The anisotropy of magnetic susceptibility (AMS) is an effective tool to measure the rock petrofabric and it allow analyzing the tectonic stress. The southwest boundary of Gondwana in South America is the counter-part of the Cape fold belt of South Africa and its geological evolution is still a subject of debate. Samples of different localities of this sector were analyzed with the AMS technique, from Buenos Aires, La Pampa and Mendoza province. For rocks of Permian age, there is a clear regional magnetic signature indicating a NW-SE elongation direction and a NE-SW shortening. The ASM patterns obtained in the oldest rocks are complex, probably as the result of stress interference in the magnitudes, space and time with different pulses of the orogenic activity developed from the Middle Devonian to the Permian. In the southwest of Gondwana, small continental plates were accreted to the main continent mass during the Middle Devonian. The Permian deformation has been interpreted as the consequence of a paleogeographic re-organization of Gondwana that moves to lowest latitudes to makes the Pangea continent during the Triassic. This younger deformation evidences an orogenic front migration and attenuation to the foreland basin.
Part of the book: Tectonics