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PROJECT TITLE: Tectonic-climatic interactions in arid orogen-basin systems (TECLA)
FUNDING: Spanish Agency (Plan Nacional I+D)
DURATION: 2012-2014

Vergés et al., 2011, Geol. mag.:

Arid climate within some orogens such as the Zagros Mountains, is a phenomenon that modifies the balance between the tectonic processes that generate topography and the erosion/transport processes that remove it. Sediment trapping in intramountain basins can modify the evolution of tectonic deformation. Inversely, it is well known that arid climate results from the topographic blockage of incoming humid wind into the orogen (orographic precipitation).In this project we aim at investigating the mechanisms involved in this feedback between climate and tectonics by means of numerical modelling techniques constrained with multidisciplinary observations, mostly collected from our own work and existing publications. We will perform a combined numerical modeling of the processes controlling the evolution of intramountain basins and the mechanisms by which these basins become exorheic and are drained and eroded out of the orogen. We will address geological escenarios where numerous recent data on tectonics and sedimentation have been collected and where an effort in the large-scale tectonosedimentary evolution has already been done. Suitable systems are the Zagros-Persian Basin system; the Carpathian-Pannonian Basin system, and the Cenozoic intramountain basins of Iberia.
The main outcomes expected are a new method for estimating erodibility from overtopping basins and a better understanding of the processes controlling the evolution of topography during orogenesis and their relative importance.

[Full proposal PDF here]

Personnel involved:
Dr. Daniel García-Castellanos (PI) 
Prof. Jaume Vergés
Dr. Charlotte Fillon (post-doc)
Dr. Eduard Saura (post-doc Central High Atlas, Morocco)
Prof. Manel Fernàndez
Dr. Emilio Casciello (JAE post-doc W Mediterranean)
Dr. Ivone Jiménez-Munt 

Preliminary results & publications:

Jiménez-Munt, I., Fernàndez, M., Saura, E., Vergés, J., Garcia-Castellanos, D., 2012. 3-D lithospheric structure and regional/residual Bouguer anomalies in the Arabia-Eurasia collision (Iran). Geophys. J. Intnl. 190, 1311-1324, doi:10.1111/j.1365-246X.2012.05580.x [pdf]

Saura, E., Embry, J.-C., Vergés, J., Hunt, D.W., Casciello, E., Homke, S., 2012. Growth fold controls on carbonate distribution in mixed foreland basins: Insights from the Amiran foreland basin (NW Zagros, Iran) and stratigraphic numerical modelling,  Basin Research

An animation of the 2D model (manuscript submitted): 

results from tAo software