• S Mohanty

      Articles written in Journal of Earth System Science

    • Structural studies in the Pre-Vindhyan rocks of Rajasthan: A summary of work of the last three decades

      K Naha S Mohanty

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      Multiple deformation in all the Precambrian metamorphic-migmatitic rocks has been reported from Rajasthan during the last three decades. But, whereas the Aravalli Group and the Banded Gneissic Complex show similarity in the style and sequence of structures in all their details, the rocks of the Delhi Group trace a partly independent trend. Isoclinal folds of the first generation (AF1) in the rocks of the Aravalli Group had gentle westerly plunge prior to later deformations. These folds show reclined, inclined, and upright attitude as a result of coaxial upright folding (AFla). Superposition of upright folds (AF2) of varying tightness, with axial plane striking N to NNE, has resulted in interference patterns of diverse types in the scale of maps, and deformation of earlier planar and linear structures in the scale of hand specimens. The structures of the third generation (AF3) are either open recumbent folds or reclined conjugate folds with axial planes dipping gently towards NE or SW. Structures of the last phase are upright conjugate folds (AF4) with axial planes striking NNE-SSW and E-W.

      The Banded Gneissic Complex (BGC) underlies the Aravalli Group with a conglomerate horizon at the contact, especially in southern Rajasthan. But, for a major part of central and southern Rajasthan, migmatites representing BGC show a structural style and sequence identical with those in the Aravalli Group. Migmatization, broadly synkinematic with the AF1 folding, suggests extensive remobilization of the basement. Very rare relict fabric athwart to and overprinted by structures of AF, generation provide tangible evidence for a basement.

      Although the structures of later phases in the rocks of the Delhi Group (DF3 and DF4) match with the late-phase structures in the Aravalli Group (AF3 and AF4), there is a contrast in the structural history of the early stages in the rocks of the two groups. The folds of the first generation in the Delhi Group (DF1) were recumbent to reclined with gentle plunge towards N to NNE or S to SSW. These were followed by coaxial upright folds of varying tightness (DF2). Absence of westerly trending AF1 folds in the Delhi Group, and extreme variation in plunge of the AF2 folds in contrast with the fairly constant plunge of the DF2 folds, provide evidence for an angular unconformity between the Aravalli and the Delhi Groups.

      Depending on the importance of flattening attendant with and following buckling during AF2 deformation, the lineations of AF1 generation show different patterns. Where the AF1 lineations are distributed in circular cones around AF2 axes because of flexural-slip folding in layered rocks with high viscosity contrast, loci of early lineations indicate that the initial orientation of the AF1 axes were subhorizontal, trending towards N280°.

      The orientation of the axial planes of the earlier folds has controlled the development of the later folds. In sectors where the AF, axial planes had N-S strike and gentle dips, or E-W strike with gentle to steep dips, nearly E-W horizontal compression during AF2 deformation resulted in well-developed AF2 folds. By contrast, where the AF, axial planes were striking nearly N-S with steep dips, E-W horizontal compression resulted in tightening (flattening) of the already isoclinal AF1 folds, and probably boudinage structures in some instances, without the development of any AF2 folds. A similar situation obtains when DF4 deformation is superposed on earlier structures. Where the dominant S-planes were subhorizontal, N-S compression during DF4 deformation resulted in either chevron folds with E-W striking axial plane or conjugate folds with axial plane striking NE and NW. In zones with S-planes striking E-W and dipping steeply, the N-S compression resulted in flattening of the earlier folds without development of DF4 folds.

    • Deformation path concepts in strain analysis: Applications for study of ductile shear zones

      S Mohanty

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      The internal fabric of a deformed rock represents the state of finite strain. In some special cases the fabrics also record the strain history of the deformed body. These special cases can profitably be utilized to compare the predictions of dynamic models and strain paths in natural deformations. In this contribution, the concept of deformation path in the study of ductile shear zones has been demonstrated.

    • Earthquake source characteristics along the arcuate Himalayan belt: Geodynamic implications

      Prosanta Kumar Khan Md Afroz Ansari S Mohanty

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      The occurrences of moderate to large magnitude earthquakes and associated subsurface geological processes were critically examined in the backdrop of Indian plate obliquity, stress obliquity, topography, and the late Tertiary regional tectonics for understanding the evolving dynamics and kinematics in the central part of the Himalayas. The higher topographic areas are likely associated with the zones of depressions, and the lower topographic areas are found around the ridges located in the frontal part of the orogen. A positive correlation between plate and stress obliquities is established for this diffuse plate boundary. We propose that the zone of sharp bending of the descending Indian lithosphere is the nodal area of major stress accumulation which is released occasionally in form of earthquakes. The lateral geometry of the Himalayas shows clusters of seismicity at an angle of ∼20° from the centre part of the arc. Such spatial distribution is interpreted in terms of compression across the arc and extension parallel to the arc. This biaxial deformation results in the development of dilational shear fractures, observed along the orogenic belt, at an angle of ∼20° from the principal compressive stress axis.

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