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Reconstruction of the Cenozoic deformation of the Bohai Bay Basin, North China

Zhu, Yinbing and Liu, Shaofeng and Zhang, Bo and Gurnis, Michael and Ma, Pengfei (2021) Reconstruction of the Cenozoic deformation of the Bohai Bay Basin, North China. Basin Research, 33 (1). pp. 364-381. ISSN 0950-091X.

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A well‐constrained plate deformation model may lead to an improved understanding of sedimentary basin formation and the connection between subduction history and over‐riding plate deformation. Building quantitative models of basin kinematics and deformation remains challenging often due to the lack of comprehensive constraints. The Bohai Bay Basin (BBB) is an important manifestation of the destruction of the North China Craton, and records the plate kinematic history of East Asia during the Cenozoic. Although a number of interpretations of the formation of the BBB have been proposed, few quantitative basin reconstruction models have been built to test and refine previous ideas. Here, we developed a quantitative deformation reconstruction of the BBB constrained with balanced cross‐sections and structural, stratigraphic, and depositional age data. Our reconstruction suggests that the basin formation process was composed of three main stages: Paleocene‐early Eocene (65‐42 Ma) extension initiation, middle Eocene‐early Oligocene (42‐32.8 Ma) extension climax, and post‐Oligocene (32.8‐0 Ma) post‐extensional subsidence. The deformation of the BBB is spatially heterogeneous, and its velocity directions rotated clockwise during the basin formation process. The reconstruction supports the interpretation that the BBB formed via strike‐slip faulting and orthogonal extension and that the basin is classified as a composite extensional‐transtensional basin. We argue that the clockwise rotation of the basin velocity field was driven by the counter‐clockwise rotation in the direction of Pacific Plate subduction. The kinematics of the BBB imply that the Pacific Plate may have been sufficiently coupled to the over‐riding East Asian Plate during the critical period of Pacific Plate reorganization. The new reconstruction provides a quantitative basis for studies of deformation processes not only in the vicinity of the BBB but more broadly throughout East Asia.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Zhu, Yinbing0000-0002-4115-3308
Liu, Shaofeng0000-0002-4115-3308
Zhang, Bo0000-0003-0212-8879
Gurnis, Michael0000-0003-1704-597X
Ma, Pengfei0000-0001-8078-6784
Additional Information:© 2020 International Association of Sedimentologists and European Association of Geoscientists and Engineers and John Wiley & Sons Ltd. Issue Online: 22 January 2021; Version of Record online: 31 May 2020; Accepted manuscript online: 15 May 2020; Manuscript accepted: 08 May 2020; Manuscript revised: 06 May 2020; Manuscript received: 26 January 2020. Research funding: National Natural Science Foundation of China. Grant Numbers: 41572189, 41820104004. Chinese Academy of Sciences. Grant Number: XDB18000000. Ministry of Science and Technology of the People's Republic of China. Grant Number: 2017YFC0601405. National Science Foundation. Grant Number: EAR‐1645775.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
National Natural Science Foundation of China41572189
National Natural Science Foundation of China41820104004
Chinese Academy of SciencesXDB18000000
Ministry of Science and Technology (Taipei)2017YFC0601405
Subject Keywords:Bohai Bay Basin; deformation; geodynamic mechanism; kinematic constraint; quantitative reconstruction; subsidence
Issue or Number:1
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20200518-071832204
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Zhu, Y, Liu, S, Zhang, B, Gurnis, M, Ma, P. Reconstruction of the Cenozoic deformation of the Bohai Bay Basin, North China. Basin Res. 2021; 33: 364–381.
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:103255
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:18 May 2020 15:08
Last Modified:29 Jan 2021 17:57

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