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Authors: Maffione, M.* 
Pucci, S.* 
Sagnotti, L.* 
Speranza, F.* 
Title: Magnetic fabric of Pleistocene continental clays from the hanging-wall of an active low-angle normal fault (Altotiberina Fault, Italy)
Issue Date: Apr-2012
Series/Report no.: 3/101 (2012)
DOI: 10.1007/s00531-011-0704-9
Keywords: AMS
Magnetic fabric
Detachment fault
Low-angle normal fault
Altotiberina fault
Subject Classification04. Solid Earth::04.05. Geomagnetism::04.05.06. Paleomagnetism 
Abstract: Anisotropy of magnetic susceptibility (AMS) represents a valuable proxy able to detect subtle strain effects in very weakly deformed sediments. In compressive tectonic settings, the magnetic lineation is commonly parallel to fold axes, thrust faults, and local bedding strike, while in extensional regimes, it is perpendicular to normal faults and parallel to bedding dip directions. The Altotiberina Fault (ATF) in the northern Apennines (Italy) is a Plio-Quaternary NNW–SSE low-angle normal fault; the sedimentary basin (Tiber basin) at its hanging-wall is infilled with a syn-tectonic, sandy-clayey continental succession. We measured the AMS of apparently undeformed sandy clays sampled at 12 sites within the Tiber basin. The anisotropy parameters suggest that a primary sedimentary fabric has been overprinted by an incipient tectonic fabric. The magnetic lineation is well developed at all sites, and at the sites from the western sector of the basin it is oriented sub-perpendicular to the trend of the ATF, suggesting that it may be related to extensional strain. Conversely, the magnetic lineation of the sites from the eastern sector has a prevailing N–S direction. The occurrence of triaxial to prolate AMS ellipsoids and sub-horizontal magnetic lineations suggests that a maximum horizontal shortening along an E–W direction occurred at these sites. The presence of compressive AMS features at the hanging-wall of the ATF can be explained by the presence of gently N–Strending local folds (hardly visible in the field) formed by either passive accommodation above an undulated fault plane, or rollover mechanism along antithetic faults. The long-lasting debate on the extensional versus compressive Plio-Quaternary tectonics of the Apennines orogenic belt should now be revised taking into account the importance of compressive structures related to local effects.
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