Structural patterns of the Lake Ercek Basin, eastern Anatolia (Turkey): evidence from single-channel seismic interpretation

Toker M., Tur H.

MARINE GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH, vol.39, no.4, pp.567-588, 2018 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 39 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s11001-017-9333-4
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.567-588
  • Keywords: Lake Ercek, Eastern Anatolia, Seismic data, Faulting patterns, Basement highs, Structural inversion, Half-graben structure, Marginal sections, 23 OCTOBER 2011, VAN TURKEY, MW 7.1, EARTHQUAKE M-W=7.1, HIGH PLATEAU, DEFORMATION, AFTERSHOCKS, REGION, FIELD
  • Van Yüzüncü Yıl University Affiliated: Yes


This study presents an analysis of the single-channel high-resolution shallow seismic reflection data from Lake Ercek, eastern Anatolia, to provide key information on the deformational elements, on the fault patterns and on the overall tectonic structure of the Lake Ercek Basin. High-resolution seismic data reveal major structural and deformational features, including N-S trending normal faults and W-E trending reverse faults bounding the Lake Ercek Basin, basement highs and folded structures along the marginal sections of the lake. The N-S trending normal faults asymmetrically control the steep western margin and the gentle eastern deltaic section, while the W-E trending reverse faults appear at the northern and southern margins. The N-S trending normal faults, half-graben structure, and the gradual thickening of sediments in the Ercek Basin toward the fault scarps strongly suggest an extensional tectonic regime resulting from an N-S compression. The Ercek Basin is an extension-controlled depocenter; it is a relatively undeformed and flat-lying deep Basin, forming a typical example of the half-graben structure. The N-S trending normal faults appear to be currently active and control the lake center and the E-delta section, resulting in subsidence in the lake floor. In the N- and S-margins of the lake, there is evidence of folding, faulting and accompanying block uplifting, suggesting a significant N-S compressional regime that results in the reverse faulting and basement highs along the marginal sections. The folding and faulting caused strong uplift of the basement blocks in the N- and S- margins, subsequently exposing the shelf and slope areas. The exposed areas are evident in the erosional unconformity of the surface of the basement highs and thinned sediments. The tilted basement strata and subsequent erosion over the basement block highs suggest prominent structural inversion, probably long before the formation of the lake. New high-resolution seismic data reveal the fault patterns and structural lineaments of the Lake Ercek and provide strong evidence for an ongoing extension and subsidence. The present study provides new structural insights that will support future tectonic and sedimentary studies and the development of strategies related to active earthquake faults and major seismic events in the region of Lake Ercek.