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Conjugate Divergent Margins

uytThe story behind conjugate margins is of great interest and importance to both industry and academia. Several of the biggest petroleum discoveries of the last decade have been found in the South Atlantic conjugate margins, which has lead to increased research and exploration in these areas.

This special publication from the Geological Society comprises 25 papers, and is split into three sections: South Atlantic, North Atlantic, and Continental Break-Up Processes. Of these, the South Atlantic chapter is easily the longest, making the North Atlantic chapter feel short in comparison.

A good deal of time is spent looking at the margins of Brazil, while less time is spent on African counterparts. The Nova Scotia and Moroccan margins also receive a good deal of attention. The final section deals with continental break-up processes. A lot of time is spent by a number of different authors dissecting non-volcanic rifted margins, but conspicuously less on their volcanic counterparts.

The integration of gravity, magnetic and seismic data is a common theme among many of the papers. There are several very good examples of this, and some beautiful maps and sections are shown. Much of the seismic is recent and high quality, showing a good level of detail. The petroleum systems are reviewed thoroughly, including discussions on both individual fields and play concepts. The papers themselves are largely very good, while high quality printing makes the most of detailed and colourful images.

Overall this is another good volume from the GSL, but cannot hope to be comprehensive due to the sheer size of the topic. It does present an interesting and absorbing story of the evolution of particularly the South Atlantic margins, but could be balanced with more time spent on North Atlantic margins, and also more discussion of the evolution of volcanic rifted margins.  

by Murray Hoggett

W U MOHRIAK et al. (Eds). Published by: The Geological Society 2013. ISBN: 978-1-86239-349-3. List price: £120; Geological Society: £60; Other qualifying societies: £72. 568pp.