Tectonic setting

Tectonic setting of Turkey within the Alpide-Himalayan chain. A-T: Anatolides-Taurides; P:Pontides
Take from http://web.itu.edu.tr/~okay/makalelerim/91_geology_of_turkey_anschnitt_2008.pdf

Turkey sits on the Alpide belt, a mountain range which extends from Java in the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic and includes the Alps, the Carpathians, the mountains of Asia Minor and Iran, the Hindu Kush, the Himalayas, and the mountains of Southeast Asia.

The oldest rocks on earth form the heart of the continental plates which move slowly over time. These ancient plates came together to form a single continent, Pangaea, around 250ma (Million Years Ago) Pangaea formed a “C” shape around the Tethys oceans. The Tethys oceans closed as Pangaea broke up and eastern Gondwana (Antarctica, India and Australia) rotated and moved towards Laurasia (Asia, Europe and N. America). The Atlantic formed when Laurasia broke up. The eastern Mediterranean and the Indian Oceans are remnants of the Neotethys Ocean while the western Mediterranean is geologically part of the Atlantic. The Aegean is a relatively new sea (less than 30ma).

Turkey is an amalgamation of several terranes and the remnants of small oceans which opened and closed again as Gondwana moved towards Laurasia. A terrane is a fragment of crustal material broken off one tectonic plate and "sutured" to crust lying on another plate.

Tectonic map of north-eastern Mediterranean region showing the major sutures and continental blocks. Sutures are shown by heavy lines with the polarity of former subduction zones indicated by filled triangles. Heavy lines with open triangles represent active subduction zones. The Late Cretaceous oceanic crust in the Black Sea is shown by grey tones. Small open triangles indicate the vergence of the major fold and thrust belts.

Take from http://web.itu.edu.tr/~okay/makalelerim/91_geology_of_turkey_anschnitt_2008.pdf

The Anatolide – Tauride Block of Southern Turkey contains several terranes that broke off from Gondwana. The Pontides to the north of the Izmir – Ankara Suture are derived from Lauratia. This suture represents the final closure of the western end of the Neotethys Ocean.

Tectonic Setting

Local Geology