Shallow marine to fluvial transition in the Siwalik succession of the Kameng River section, Arunachal Himalaya and its implication for foreland basin evolution

Article Type

Research Article

Publication Title

Journal of Asian Earth Sciences


An understanding of the depositional environment and paleogeography of the Siwalik foreland basin are crucial in interpreting the basin configuration, sediment transport pathways and its evolutionary history. This study examines the sedimentology of the Siwalik succession of the Kameng River valley, Arunachal Himalaya, northeastern India. The facies characteristics of the fine-grained, well-sorted sediments of the Dafla Formation and its complex, polymodal paleocurrent pattern in this section, reveals deposition in a variety of open marine to deltaic environment. The overlying Subansiri Formation, characterized by coarse-grained, thick, multistoried sandstone, and showing more consistent SW-ward paleocurrent, indicate deposition from a large, axial braided river system. The proposed redefinition of the boundary between the Lower Siwalik Dafla and the Middle Siwalik Subansiri formations implies their transition at around 7.5 Ma, instead of 10.5 Ma, suggested earlier. The revised age of the transition is consistent with the age of arrival of the Transhimalayan sediments at 7 Ma and also denotes the time of marine to fluvial transition in this area. Presence of marine sediments in the Kameng section, with similar records further west, indicates the existence of an extensive seaway in the eastern Himalaya during the lower Siwalik time. The extant paleodrainage reconstructions have been recast on the basis of new data on the sedimentology and paleocurrent from this section. It is inferred that the changing sea level, uplifting Shillong Plateau and drainage evolution in the eastern Himalayan foreland during the middle Miocene time controlled the marine to fluvial transition in the basin.



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Open Access, Green

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