I. D. Carr*

*North Africa Research Group, Geology (BMS), Oxford Brookes University, Headington, Oxford OX3 0BP.


A synthesis of the sedimentology and sequence stratigraphy of the Palaeozoic succession of North Africa is presented. Two chronostratigraphic correlation panels have been constructed at roughly right angles to each other across North Africa, in WNW-ESE and NNW-SSE orientations. The panels illustrate the way in which sedimentology and hydrocarbon geology vary across the continent through time. The Palaeozoic succession is divided into five second-order sequences (NA 1, Early Cambrian to Late Ordovician; NA 2, Late Ordovician to Late Silurian; NA 3, Devonian; NA 4, Carboniferous; NA 5, Permian), with sequence boundaries, maximum flooding surfaces and systems tracts being defined for NA 1 to NA 4. Palaeogeographic reconstructions for the North African region from the Cambrian to the Carboniferous are illustrated, and a sea-level curve based on the panels and palaeogeographic reconstructions is compared to other published sea-level curves. The proximity of the North African region to the South Pole during the Palaeozoic and its relative tectonic stability, suggest that sea-level curves derived from the area should closely reflect Palaeozoic glacio-eustasy. This study may be used to investigate the occurrence of reservoir, seal and source rocks away from areas of data control, and could provides a useful framework for future third-order studies.

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