Seismic signatures of complex geological structures in the Cue-Weld Range area, Murchison domain, Yilgarn Craton, Western Australia

Omid Ahmadi, Hemin Koyi, Christopher Juhlin, Klaus Gessner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


The Murchison domain forms the northwest part of the Youanmi Terrane, a tectonic unit within the Neoarchean Yilgarn Craton in Western Australia. In the Cue-Weld Range area the Murchison domain has experienced a complex magmatic and deformation history that resulted in a transposed array of greenstone belts that host significant iron, gold, and base metal deposits. In this study, we interpret the upper 2 s (about 6 km) of a deep crustal seismic profile 10GA–YU1, near the town of Cue, and correlate rock units and structures in outcrop with corresponding reflections. We performed 3D constant velocity ray-tracing and calculate the corresponding travel times for the reflections for time domain pre-stack and post-stack seismic data. This allows us to link shallow reflections with mafic volcanic rocks of the Glen Group and basaltic rocks of the Polelle Group in outcrop. Based on our interpretation and published geological maps and data, we propose a model in which the local stratigraphy represents a refolded thrust system. To test our hypothesis, we applied 2D acoustic finite difference forward modeling. The corresponding synthetic data were processed in the same way as the acquired data. Comparisons between the acquired and the synthetic data show that the model is consistent with observations. We propose a new model for the subsurface of the Cue-Weld Range area and argue that some of the lithologies in the area are repeated structurally at different levels. Our approach highlights the benefit of imaging and modeling of deep seismic transects to resolve local structural complexity in Archean granite-greenstone terrains.

Original languageBritish English
Pages (from-to)56-66
Number of pages11
StatePublished - 15 Oct 2016


  • 3D structural model
  • Finite difference modeling
  • Murchison domain
  • Ray-tracing
  • Seismic interpretation
  • Weld range


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