Implication of Transfer Zones in Rift Fault Propagation: Example from Cauvery Basin, Indian East Coast

  • Swagato DasguptaEmail author
Part of the Springer Geology book series (SPRINGERGEOL)


The Cauvery basin, an important Indian petroliferous peri-cratonic Mesozoic rift basin trends NE. The basin formed by break-up of eastern Gondwana landmass in Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous. Structural trend of the basin is greatly influenced by the adjacent Precambrian Eastern Ghat mobile belt and the Southern Granulite Terrain. The basin comprises of a number of ~NE trending sub-basins separated by ~NW trending transverse faults. Each of these sub-basins exhibits a set of half graben morphology that is characteristic of the rifting. The basement rock consists of Pre-Cambrian granite-gneiss of the Southern Granulite Terrain with a number of ~E trending shear zones. The present study deals with the understanding of the syn-rift fault architecture and the influence of transfer zones in rift propagation. The study includes rift fault morphology across different sub-basins from onland to offshore. I analyze the transfer zone geometry that transfers strain to overlapping and/or approaching normal faults. In such zones, slip transfers from one fault to another with similar or opposite sense. Pre-existing shear fabric of basement plays a key role in transfer zone/relay ramp/transfer fault formation, thereby guiding the rift fault geometry. These transfer zones play a major role in sediment distribution pattern as well as in generation of structural and stratigraphic traps.



SDG thanks Soumyajit Mukherjee for handling this article and provide two rounds of review comments. SDG thanks Abhimanyu Maitra for helping in preparation of Fig. 5 in this article. The work is solely based on published literature survey. No data has been taken from any companies/organizations. Mukherjee (2019) summarized this work.


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.301-Platinum AuraNavi MumbaiIndia

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