Seismic and non-seismic soft-sediment deformation structures in the Proterozoic Bhander Limestone, central India

Subir Sarkar 1 , Adrita Choudhuri 1 , Santanu Banerjee 2 , A.J. (Tom) Van Loon 3 , and Pradip K Bose 1
  • 1 Department of Geological Sciences, Jadavpur University, Kolkata-700 032, India
  • 2 Department of Earth Sciences, IIT Bombay, Powai, Mumbai 400 076, India
  • 3 Institute of Geology, Adam Mickiewicz University, Maków Polnych 16, 61-606 Poznan, Poland. e-mail:


Numerous soft-sediment deformation structures occur within the Proterozoic Bhander Limestone of an intracratonic sag basin in a 750 m long section along the Thomas River, near Maihar, central India. Part of these deformation structures have most probably a non-seismic origin, but other structures are interpreted as resulting from earthquake-induced shocks. These seismic structures are concentrated in a 60 cm thick interval, which is interpreted as three stacked seismi-tes. These three seismites are traceable over the entire length of the section. They divide the sedimentary succession in a lower part (including the seismites) deposited in a hypersaline lagoon, and an upper open-marine (shelf) part. Most of the soft-sediment deformations outside the seismite interval occur in a lagoonal intraclastic and muddy facies association.

The SSDS within the seismite interval show a lateral continuity. They record simultaneous fluidisation and liquefaction. The bases of each of the three composing seismite bands are defined by small-scale shear folds, probably recording an earthquake and aftershocks.

The presence of the three seismite bands at the boundary between the lagoonal and the overlying open-marine oolitic facies association suggests that the seismic event also triggered basin subsidence.

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