Most major fields in the northeastern area of Saudi Arabia and Kuwait are anticlinal structures developed above north-northeast–south-southwest-trending basement lineaments. Based on structural interpretation of 3D seismic data sets, the fault pattern over one such field in the offshore Arabian Gulf of Kuwait and Saudi Arabia was analyzed in detail and integrated into the regional tectonic framework. Two discrete fault sets were identified. First, a system of Cretaceous extensional block faulting was observed that is parallel to and associated with folding over the basement structure. Second, a complex wrench-fault assemblage was identified associated with a Palaeogene dextral couple across the Zagros suture, which overprinted the inherited structural fabric. Convex-upward, Zagros-parallel flower structures were interpreted along with coeval synthetic and antithetic strike-slip fault systems. The interpretation of two discrete faults sets was then applied to an adjacent field that proved to have experienced a more complex tectonic history. Integration of the seismic fault interpretation into the regional tectonic history provided a robust framework that enhanced the understanding of the fault pattern and the structural interpretation of a nearby more complex field.
- Received January 14, 2014.
- Revision received June 10, 2014.
- Accepted July 15, 2014.