The Migif-Hafafit gneissic complex of the Egyptian Eastern Desert: Fold interference patterns involving multiply deformed sheath folds

Abdel Rahman Fowler, Baher El Kalioubi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The Wadi Hafafit Complex (WHC) is an arcuate belt of orthogneisses, migmatites and other high-grade metamorphic rocks, which marks the boundary between the Central Eastern and the South Eastern Deserts of Egypt. In the WHC, gneissic metagabbro outlines macroscopic fold interference patterns characterized by elliptical to irregular culminations cored by gneissic meta-tonalite to meta-trondhjemite. The five main culminations of the WHC have previously been labeled A (most northerly), B, C, D and E (most southerly). A detailed structural investigation of B, C, D and E reveals that these structures are a result of the interference of four macroscopic fold phases, the first three of which may represent a single deformation event. The first folding involved sheath-like fold nappes, which were transported to the N or NW, assisted by translation on gently dipping mylonite zones. The regional gneissosity and mineral extension lineations formed during this folding event. The fold nappes were deformed by mainly open upright small macroscopic and mesocopic folds with approximately NE-trending hinges. As a probable continuation of the latter folding, the sheaths were buckled into large macroscopic folds and monoclines with the same NE-trends. The fourth macroscopic folding resulted from shortening along the NE-SW direction, producing mainly NW-SE-trending upright gently plunging folds. Gravitative uplift is disputed as a component of the deformation history of the WHC. The peculiarities of the fold interference pattern result from the interesting behaviour of sheath folds during their refolding.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)247-275
Number of pages29
JournalTectonophysics
Volume346
Issue number3-4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2002

Keywords

  • Egyptian Eastern Desert
  • Fold interference patterns
  • Migif-Hafafit gneisses
  • Multiple folding
  • Pan-African geology
  • Sheath folds

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Earth-Surface Processes

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