The Jurassic succession of Ras Sharwayn, South-Eastern Yemen

Milvio FAZZUOLI, Marco MORELLI, Giulio PAVIA, Khalid A. AL-THOUR, Maurizio CHIOCCHINI, Viviana REALE, Emma TADDEI


Four Jurassic stratigraphic units have been recognised at Ras Sharwayn, about 300 km east of Al-Mukalla along coast of the Gulf of Aden. The Kohlan Formation (60 m) unconformably overlies the crystalline basement. Its lower and middle part consist of fluviatile sandstone and conglomerate. The upper part is made up of transitional coarse- and fine-grained sandstones and siltstones. The sequence ends with shallow marine fine-grained sandstones. The Shuqra Formation (71 m) can be divided into two members. The lower Calcareous-marly Member (45 m) consists of grey bioclastic limestone andsubordinate nodular marl (inner to mid ramp). Its age is Late Oxfordian. The upper Carbonate Member (26 m) changes from basal reddish marly limestones (mid ramp) to thick beds of red-brown, coarsely crystalline limestones and dolomites (inner ramp). The topmost beds contain fossils of colonial organisms, essentially stromatoporoids. Its age is Late Oxfordian, and possibly earliest Kimmeridgian. The Madbi Formation (>30 m) consists of yellowish marl alternating with marly limestone and bioclastic limestone (coquinas) corresponding to storm layers (mid to outer ramp). With regard to its age, a specimen of Orthosphinctes sp., collected a few metres from the base, possibly refers to the EarlyKimmeridgian. The Madbi Formation ends with an unconformity surface. The informal Clastic unit (56 m) (including the Naifa Formation) consists, from bottom upwards, of: red-brown dolomite; grey detrital limestone with quartz grains; massive, white conglomerate with well rounded limestone clasts, quartz and bioclasts (e.g. colonial organisms). The last lithotypes are gravity flow deposits, accumulated at the base of a scarp possibly tectonic in origin, approximately at the Jurassic-Cretaceous boundary.This detailed lithological, sedimentological and biostratigraphical study has provided revised lithostratigraphical subdivision and nomenclature and improved the stratigraphic contro


Jurassic; South-Eastern Yemen' carbonate ramp; uncorformity surface

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