Sulawesi and the evolution of the Makassar Straits


The Makassar Strait has long been recognised as a zone of major geological importance. It is situated between major mountain belts of western Sulawesi and fold belts of east Borneo and is the site of the original Wallace’s Line separating Australian and Eurasian faunas and floras. Lower crust (and possibly sub-crustal mantle) basement is exposed in west Sulawesi and there has been major late Tertiary contraction. The main depocentre contains up to 17 km of sediment and on both sides there are major and potential hydrocarbon containing basins.

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