Crustal structure of southern Burkina Faso inferred from magnetotelluric, gravity and magnetic data

F. Le Pape, A. G. Jones, M. W. Jessell, S. Perrouty, L. A. Gallardo, L. Baratoux, C. Hogg, Luc Siebenaller, A. Touré, P. Ouiya, G. Boren

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Understanding the architecture of the West African craton at depth is essential to be able to reconstruct its evolution. Our study focuses on the crustal imaging of structures and geometries characterizing the crust of the Leo-Man shield with broadband and long period magnetotelluric data collected in southern Burkina Faso and covering a 220 km long profile. The resulting 3D resistivity crustal model highlights the distribution of the granite-greenstone assemblages with depth showing excellent correlation with mapped surficial lithologies. The whole crust of southern Burkina Faso is resistive, with lateral as opposed to vertical major resistivity contrasts, reflecting the location of major-scale shear zones characterizing this part of the Baoulé-Mossi domain. Ground gravity data acquired along the same line as the MT data were also modeled and show relatively good correspondence with the resistivity model. The new resistivity and gravity models compared with results from joint inversion of gravity and aeromagnetic data highlight significant changes between the greenstone belts and granitoid domains along the profile. The comparison of the geophysics with the geology enables us to define new depth constraints of the main tectonic features in the area. The observed large scale dipping shear zones favour the model of crustal building through major parallel thrust faults.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)261-272
Number of pages12
JournalPrecambrian Research
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Burkina Faso
  • Gravity
  • Joint inversion
  • Magnetization
  • Magnetotellurics
  • West African craton

Cite this