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Handled by Isabelle Manighetti
Located in northern Niger, the NW–SE Téfidet trough is the western branch of the Ténéré rift megasystem.
Here we present a tectono-sedimentary analysis of the Téfidet trough, based on the combined use of satellite imagery, field observations and measures, and available literature. We use these data to analyse the sedimentary facies and the tectonic deformations (faults, folds, basins) in the Téfidet trough, and derive their relative chronology. Doing so, we characterize synrift and postrift deformations and their interactions with sedimentation.
Altogether our analyses suggest that the Téfidet trough was affected from the Cretaceous to the Paleogene by three major tectonic periods.
The first period was a rifting stage with extension and transtension during the Albian–Aptian times. The mean extension was ∼N60° and dominantly produced NW–SE-trending normal faults, a few strike-slip faults locally associated with small folds with sigmoidal axis and small reverse faults, and progressive unconformities.
the second period was also a rifting time, which prevailed during the Upper Cretaceous. The regime was marked by transtensional to extensional tectonics, under a ∼N130° shortening and a ∼N60° trending stretching. The end of this period saw the closure of the Téfidet trough.
the third period was a postrift stage. It was characterized by a ∼N70° extensional to transtensional regime during the Oligocene–Pliocene. It mainly produced post-sedimentary extensional faults and fractures and alkaline volcanism. We eventually discuss these deformation phases in relation with the Cretaceous Gondwana breakup and its related rifting events in West and North Africa, and with the subsequent Africa–Europe collision.
Keywords : Téfidet trough, South Atlantic opening, Africa–Europe collision, Synsedimentary tectonics, Albian–Aptian