SURVEYS IN GEOPHYSICS, vol.35, no.2, pp.431-448, 2014 (SCI-Expanded)
The North Anatolian Fault (NAF) is not observed on the surface beyond 40 km southeast of Karliova town toward the western shoreline of Lake Van. Various amplitudes of gravity and aeromagnetic anomalies are observed around the lake and surrounding region. In the gravity anomaly map, contour intensity is observed from the north of Mus city center toward Lake Van. There is a possibility that the NAF extends from here to the lake. Because there is no gravity data within the lake, the extension of the NAF is unknown and uncertain in the lake and to the east. Meanwhile, it is observed from the aeromagnetic anomalies that there are several positive and negative amplitude anomalies aligned around a slightly curved line in the east-west direction. The same curvature becomes much clearer in the analytic signal transformation map. The volcanic mountains of Nemrut and Suphan, and magnetic anomalies to the east of the Lake Van are all lined up and extended with this slightly curved line, provoking thoughts that a fault zone that was not previously mapped may exist. The epicenter of the major earthquake event that occurred on October 23, 2011 is located on this fault zone. The fault plane solution of this earthquake indicates a thrust fault in the east-west direction, consistent with the results of this study. Volcanic mountains in this zone are accepted as still being active because of gas seepages from their calderas, and magnetic anomalies are caused by buried causative bodies, probably magmatic intrusions. Because of its magmatic nature, this zone could be a good prospect for geothermal energy exploration. In this study, the basement of the Van Basin was also modelled three-dimensionally (3D) in order to investigate its hydrocarbon potential, because the first oil production in Anatolia was recorded around the Kurzot village in this basin. According to the 3D modelling results, the basin is composed of three different depressions aligned in the N-S direction and many prospective structures were observed between and around these depressions where the depocenter depths may reach down to 10 km.