Research: Convergent Systems

Structural architecture of the Hudson Valley fold-thrust belt

Insufficient subsurface data (e.g., seismic surveys and well logs) have long hindered interpretations of the structural architecture of the post-Taconic northern Appalachian fold-thrust belt. To partially address this need, I examined the structural architecture of the fold-thrust belt near Kingston, NY. This region is significant because it is in the transition between the central (Pennsylvanian Valley and Ridge) and northern (Hudson Valley) segments of the Appalachian fold-thrust belt. I combined results of detailed geologic mapping (Fig. 1) and serial cross sections to create a 3-D model for the structural architecture of the fold-thrust belt. This model illustrates a two-tiered duplex system similar to that of the central Appalachians, but at a much smaller scale. The dramatic contrast in structural scale between the central and northern segments of the Appalachian fold-thrust belt is likely the result of along-strike thinning of the mechanically significant stratigraphic units within the deformed Siluro-Devonian sequence. The results of this work are relevant to ongoing efforts to characterize natural gas deposits in the Appalachian Plateau and adjacent areas.

In collaboration with:

Yvette Kuiper, Colorado School of Mines

Frederick Vollmer, SUNY New Paltz

Jeffrey Walker, Vassar College

Michael J. Harrison, Tennessee Technical University

Stephen Marshak, University of Illinois

M. Scott Wilkerson, DePauw University

Kurtis C. Burmeister

Associate Professor of Geology