Science.gov

Sample records for eger rift central

  1. Seismic imaging of the geodynamic activity at the western Eger rift in central Europe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mullick, N.; Buske, S.; Hrubcova, P.; Ruzek, B.; Shapiro, S.; Wigger, P.; Fischer, T.

    2015-04-01

    The western Eger rift at the Czech-German border in central Europe is an important geodynamically active area within the European Cenzoic rift system (ECRS) in the forelands of the Alps. Along with two other active areas of the ECRS, the French Massif Central and the east and west Eifel volcanic fields, it is characterized by numerous CO2-rich fluid emission points and frequent micro-seismicity. Existence of a plume(s) is indicated in the upper mantle which may be responsible for these observations. Here we reprocess a pre-existing deep seismic reflection profile '9HR' and interpret the subsurface structures as mapped by seismic reflectivity with previous findings, mainly from seismological and geochemical studies, to investigate the geodynamic activity in the subsurface. We find prominent hints of pathways which may allow magmatic fluids originating in the upper mantle to rise through the crust and cause the observed fluid emanations and earthquake activity.

  2. Local Moho Updoming Beneath The Western Eger Rift, Central Europe ? Results From Teleseismic Receiver Functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Geissler, W. H.; Kind, R.; Kaempf, H.; Klinge, K.; Plenefisch, T.; Zednik, J.; Horalek, J.; W-Bohemia Working Group

    The Eger rift is part of the European Cainozoic rift system. The tectono-magmatic activity in this area started in the uppermost Cretaceous. The Quaternary to active period is associated with CO2-emanations at the surface, alkaline volcanic activity, neotectonic uplift in the Slavskovsky Les area, active basin formation of the Cheb basin and earthquake swarm activity in the German/Czech boundary region NW- Bohemia/Vogtland. In the past few years there are many efforts to investigate the re- lation of mantle-crust interaction (swarm earthquakes and CO2-degassing) in a close co-operation between Czech and German institutes. One of the key-questions of the research is the understanding of the dynamic of the asthenosphere-lithosphere system beneath the area. As the first step in this direction we present Moho depths for the surrounding of the earthquake swarm area NW-Bohemia/Vogtland. We analysed tele- seismic data from stationary broadband and short-period stations and from temporary networks in the region. We calculated the Moho depth and average vp/vs-values using Moho Ps-conversions and their multiples. We obtained good results at almost all of the broadband stations. With the exception of one station within the Cheb basin also the short period stations of local networks yielded good results. At almost all stations we see a strong converted phase with positive polarity (indicating velocity increase downwards) at about 3.7 s after the P-wave which originates from the Moho disconti- nuity. The multiple conversions from the Moho could not clearly be seen in the short period data. Moho depths range from possibly only 26 km beneath the Cheb basin to 38 km in the central Bohemian massif. The local Moho updoming in the order of 3 to 4 km in NW-Bohemia seems to correlate with the geometry of the Cheb basin and one of the main centres of CO2-mantle degassing. If this local Moho high can be supported by further investigations, it could indicate active magmatic underplating

  3. A multidisciplinary study in the geodynamic active western Eger rift (Central Europe): The Quaternary volcanic complex Mytina and the recent CO2-degassing zone Hartousov

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Flechsig, C.; Heinicke, J.; Kaempf, H. W.; Nickschick, T.; Mrlina, J.

    2013-12-01

    The Eger rift (Central Europe) belongs to the European Cenozoic rift system and represents an approximately 50 km wide and 300 km long ENE-WSW striking continental rift that formed during the Upper Cretaceous-Tertiary transition. This rift zone is one of the most active seismic regions in Central Europe. Especially, the western part of the Eger rift area is dominated by ongoing hidden magmatic processes in the intra-continental lithospheric mantle. Besides of known quaternary volcanoes, these processes take place in absence of any presently active volcanism at the surface. However, they are expressed by a series of phenomena distributed over a relatively large area, like occurrence of repeated earthquake swarms, surface exhalation of mantle-derived and CO2-enriched fluids at mofettes and mineral springs, and enhanced heat flow. At present this is the only known intra-continental region where such deep-seated, active lithospheric processes currently occur. The aim of the project is to investigate the tectonic/geologic near surface structure and the degassing processes of the mofette field of Hartousov, where soil gas measurements (concentration and flux rate) in an area of appr. 3x2 km traced a permeable NS extended segment of a fault zone and revealed highly permeable Diffuse Degassing Structures (DDS). The second target is volcanic environment of the Quaternary volcanic complex Mytina maar and the cinder cone Zelezna hurka/Eisenbühl. The investigations are intended to clarify: a) the spatio-temporal reconstruction of the maar complex, and the palaeo volcanic scenario (geological model, tectonic settings, distribution of pyroclastica, b) the geological structure and the tectonic control of the recent degassing zone, and c) the comperative interpretation of both regions in the consideration of potential future volcanic risk assessment in sub-regions of the western Eger Rift. To investigate both regions the following methods are used: geoelectrics, geomagnetics

  4. Depleted subcontinental lithospheric mantle and its tholeiitic melt metasomatism beneath NE termination of the Eger Rift (Europe): the case study of the Steinberg (Upper Lusatia, SE Germany) xenoliths

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kukuła, Anna; Puziewicz, Jacek; Matusiak-Małek, Magdalena; Ntaflos, Theodoros; Büchner, Jörg; Tietz, Olaf

    2015-12-01

    The ca. 30 Ma Steinberg basanite occurs at the NE termination of the Eger (Ohře) Rift in the NW Bohemian Massif, Central Europe, and belongs to the Cenozoic alkaline Central European Volcanic Province. The basanite hosts a suite of mantle xenoliths, most of which are harzburgites containing relatively magnesian olivine (Fo 90.5-91.6) and Al-poor (0.04-0.13 a pfu) orthopyroxene (mg# 0.90-0.92). Some of these harzburgites also contain volumetrically minor clinopyroxene (mg# 0.92-0.95, Al 0.03-0.13 a pfu) and have U-shaped LREE-enriched REE patterns. The Steinberg harzburgites are typical for the Lower Silesian - Upper Lusatian domain of the European subcontinental lithospheric mantle. They represent residual mantle that has undergone extensive partial melting and was subsequently affected by mantle metasomatism by mixed carbonatite-silicate melts. The Steinberg xenolith suite comprises also dunitic xenoliths affected by metasomatism by melt similar to the host basanite, which lowered the Fo content in olivine to 87.6 %. This metasomatism happened shortly before xenolith entrainment in the erupting lava. One of the xenoliths is a wehrlite (olivine Fo 73 %, clinopyroxene mg# 0.83-0.85, subordinate orthopyroxene mg# 0.76-0.77). Its clinopyroxene REE pattern is flat and slightly LREE-depleted. This wehrlite is considered to be a tholeiitic cumulate. One of the studied harzburgites contains clinopyroxene with similar trace element contents to those in wehrlite. This type of clinopyroxene records percolation of tholeiitic melt through harzburgite. The tholeiitic melt might be similar to Cenozoic continental tholeiites occurring in the Central European Volcanic Province (e.g., Vogelsberg, Germany).

  5. Evolutionary model of the oblique rift basins- Central African Rifts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Kenn-Ming; Cheng, I.-Wen; Wu, Jong-Chang

    2016-04-01

    The geometry of oblique-rifting basin is strongly related with the angle (α) between the trend of rift and that of regional major extensional stress. The main purpose of this study is to investigate characteristics of geometry and kinematics of structure and tectono-stratigraphy during basin evolution of Central African Rifts (CAS). In this study, we simulated the formation of oblique-rifting basin with Particle Flow Code 3-Dimensions-(PFC 3D) and compared the simulation results with the tectonic settings of a series of basin in CAS. CAS started to develop in Early Cretaceous (130Ma) and lasted until the Late Cretaceous (85Ma-80Ma). The following collision between the African and Eurasian plates imposed compressional stress on CAS and folded the strata in the rift basins. Although the characteristics of rift basin formation remain controversial, palinspastic sections constructed in this study show that, in the Early Cretaceous, the rift basins are mainly characterized by normal faults and half-grabens. In the Late Cretaceous, the morphology of the rift basins was altered by large-scaled tectonic compression with the active Borogop Fault of regional scale. Also, en echelon trend of normal faults in the basins were measured and the angles between the trend with that of the rift axes of each basin were demonstrated, indicating that the development of CAS was affected by the regional extensional stress with a dextral component during the rifting process and, therefore, the rift basins were formed by oblique-rifting. In this study, we simulated the oblique-rifting basin model of various α with Particle Flow Code 3-Dimensions-(PFC 3D). The main theory of PFC 3D is based on the Discrete Element Method (DEM), in which parameters are applied to every particle in the models. We applied forces acting on both sides of rift axis, which α are 45°, 60°, 75° and 90° respectively, to simulate basin formation under oblique-rifting process. The study results of simulation

  6. CO2 degassing in the Hartoušov mofette area, western Eger Rift, imaged by CO2 mapping and geoelectrical and gravity surveys

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nickschick, Tobias; Kämpf, Horst; Flechsig, Christina; Mrlina, Jan; Heinicke, Jens

    2015-11-01

    Strong, subcontinental mantle-dominated CO2 degassing occurs in the Hartoušov and Bublák mofette fields in the western Eger Rift. The combination of CO2 gas flux and soil gas measurements as well as gravity and geoelectric surveys provides insight into the surface and subsurface of this unique mofette area. CO2 soil gas and gas flux measurements reveal that large amounts of carbon dioxide are released via channels with diameters below 1 m. Carbon dioxide emissions of several tens and up to more than 100 kg day-1 are ejected via these small seeps. Measurements with small spacings are necessary to account for the point like, focused gas discharge in the lesser degassing surrounding. We estimate that between 23 and 97 tons of CO2 are released over an area of about 350,000 m2 each day in the Hartoušov mofette field. The application of widely used geostatistical tools leads to estimations of the CO2 discharge with very high standard deviations due to the strong positive skewness of the data distribution. Geophysical investigations via electrical resistivity tomography and gravity measurements were carried out over areas of strong seepage and reveal distinct anomalies in the subsurface below mofettes, indicating rock and sediment alterations and/or sediment transport by pressurised, ascending CO2 and water mobilised by it. This study reveals that the gas emanations only occur west of a morphological step which is related to a N-S-oriented fault zone, the Počatky-Plesná fault zone. The results of CO2 mapping and the geophysical studies can track the course of this fault zone in this area. Our results fit into a tectonic model in which the mofette fields are in the centres of two independent pull-apart basin-like structures. We hypothesise that the sinistral strike-slip movement of the Počatky-Plesná fault zone leads to a pull-apart basin-like opening, at which the strong, mantle-derived CO2 degassing occurs nowadays. Since the Hartoušov and Bublák mofette fields

  7. Rapid spatiotemporal variations in rift structure during development of the Corinth Rift, central Greece

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nixon, Casey W.; McNeill, Lisa C.; Bull, Jonathan M.; Bell, Rebecca E.; Gawthorpe, Robert L.; Henstock, Timothy J.; Christodoulou, Dimitris; Ford, Mary; Taylor, Brian; Sakellariou, Dimitris; Ferentinos, George; Papatheodorou, George; Leeder, Mike R.; Collier, Richard E. LI.; Goodliffe, Andrew M.; Sachpazi, Maria; Kranis, Haralambos

    2016-05-01

    The Corinth Rift, central Greece, enables analysis of early rift development as it is young (<5 Ma) and highly active and its full history is recorded at high resolution by sedimentary systems. A complete compilation of marine geophysical data, complemented by onshore data, is used to develop a high-resolution chronostratigraphy and detailed fault history for the offshore Corinth Rift, integrating interpretations and reconciling previous discrepancies. Rift migration and localization of deformation have been significant within the rift since inception. Over the last circa 2 Myr the rift transitioned from a spatially complex rift to a uniform asymmetric rift, but this transition did not occur synchronously along strike. Isochore maps at circa 100 kyr intervals illustrate a change in fault polarity within the short interval circa 620-340 ka, characterized by progressive transfer of activity from major south dipping faults to north dipping faults and southward migration of discrete depocenters at ~30 m/kyr. Since circa 340 ka there has been localization and linkage of the dominant north dipping border fault system along the southern rift margin, demonstrated by lateral growth of discrete depocenters at ~40 m/kyr. A single central depocenter formed by circa 130 ka, indicating full fault linkage. These results indicate that rift localization is progressive (not instantaneous) and can be synchronous once a rift border fault system is established. This study illustrates that development processes within young rifts occur at 100 kyr timescales, including rapid changes in rift symmetry and growth and linkage of major rift faults.

  8. Fluid pressure and flow at great depth in the continental crust. A discussion in relation to topography, temperature and salinity distribution using as an example the KTB Fault Zones in connection with the Eger Rift Hot Spot.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kessels, W.; Kuhlmann, S.; Li, X.

    2006-12-01

    Hydraulic investigations in and between the two KTB boreholes have shown that groundwater flow is possible at great depth in the crystalline crust. Remarkable permeability was found particularly in the SE1 and SE2 fault zones. The results from a long term pump and injection test, and the related three-dimensional groundwater modelling (Graesle et al., 2006), document the existence of a large-scale (more than 10 km) hydraulic reservoir in the crystalline crust. According to this calculation, an overpressure of 0.4 MPa can be still be expected in KTB-HB in 2009, 4 years after the end of the injection. The good match with the measurement data confirms groundwater pathways at a scale of more than 10 km. The isotopic water composition recovered from the KTB pilot hole indicates a downward water flow along the SE2 fault zone, which is in contact with the Franconian Line. Moreover, there is a deep upward groundwater flow 60 km away in the western Eger Rift Valley as indicated e.g. by the temperature signature and gas flow observations. Therefore, the demand for fluid mass continuity means that water is being supplied by a downstream groundwater flow, probably from the Franconian Line. The question of potential driving processes must be answered to understand and quantify the flow in the deeper crust at a scale of 10 km to 100 km. The processes must result in a sufficient horizontal pressure gradient to allow groundwater flow at great depth. The density variations of groundwater with depth are highly relevant for the calculation of horizontal pressure differences. The two independent potential fields of gravity and pressure have to be considered. Differentiation into 4 relevant driving processes is required: \\bullet The groundwater surface topography related to the groundwater recharge and mean regional distance between neighbouring valleys \\bullet Geothermal gradient and water density depending on temperature and pressure \\bullet Different salt contents in adjacent

  9. Crustal structure of central Lake Baikal: Insights into intracontinental rifting

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    ten Brink, U.S.; Taylor, M.H.

    2002-01-01

    The Cenozoic rift system of Baikal, located in the interior of the largest continental mass on Earth, is thought to represent a potential analog of the early stage of breakup of supercontinents. We present a detailed P wave velocity structure of the crust and sediments beneath the Central Basin, the deepest basin in the Baikal rift system. The structure is characterized by a Moho depth of 39-42.5 km; an 8-km-thick, laterally continuous high-velocity (7.05-7.4 km/s) lower crust, normal upper mantle velocity (8 km/s), a sedimentary section reaching maximum depths of 9 km, and a gradual increase of sediment velocity with depth. We interpret the high-velocity lower crust to be part of the Siberian Platform that was not thinned or altered significantly during rifting. In comparison to published results from the Siberian Platform, Moho under the basin is elevated by <3 km. On the basis of these results we propose that the basin was formed by upper crustal extension, possibly reactivating structures in an ancient fold-and-thrust belt. The extent and location of upper mantle extension are not revealed by our data, and it may be offset from the rift. We believe that the Baikal rift structure is similar in many respects to the Mesozoic Atlantic rift system, the precursor to the formation of the North Atlantic Ocean. We also propose that the Central Baikal rift evolved by episodic fault propagation and basin enlargement, rather than by two-stage rift evolution as is commonly assumed.

  10. Gravity study of the Central African Rift system: A model of continental disruption 1. The Ngaoundere and Abu Gabra Rifts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Browne, S. E.; Fairhead, J. D.

    1983-05-01

    A regional compilation of published and unpublished gravity data for Central Africa is presented and reveals the presence of a major rift system, called here, the Central African Rift System. It is proposed that the junction area between the Ngaoundere and Abu Gabra rift arms in Western Sudan forms an incipient intraplate, triple-junction with the as yet unfractured, but domally uplifted and volcanically active, Darfur swell. It is only the Darfur swell that shows any similarities to the uplift and rift history of East Africa. The other two rifts arms are considered to be structurally similar to the early stages of passive margin development and thus reflect more closely the initial processes of continental fragmentation than the structures associated with rifting in East Africa.

  11. Early Cretaceous rifts of Western and Central Africa: an overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guiraud, René; Maurin, Jean-Christophe

    1992-10-01

    The structure and evolution of Early Cretaceous rift basins in Western and Central Africa are described. Two stages of rift development and fracturing have been identified: (1) from Neocomian to Early Aptian roughly E-W and NW trending troughs (Upper Benue, N Cameroon, S Chad, Sudan etc.) opened in response to a submeridian extensional regime in Central Africa while in Western Africa the N-S trending transsaharian fault zone acted as a sinistral wrench; (2) from Middle Aptian to Late Albian large northwest trending troughs (E Niger, Sudan, Sirte, etc.) opened in response to a northeast extensional regime while the Central African fault zone (from Benue to Sudan) exhibited strike-slip movements, generating pull-apart basins. These rift and fracture systems delimit three large blocks within the African plate: a Western block, an Arabian-Nubian block and an Austral block. The Arabian-Nubian block tends to separate from the two other blocks, migrating towards the north during the first stage of basin development and then towards the NE during the second stage. The opening of the Atlantic Ocean was the dominant driving force for the Western and Austral blocks while the Arabian-Nubian block probably moved in response to the opening of the Indian Ocean and to the evolution of the Tethyan margin.

  12. Groundwater fluoride enrichment in an active rift setting: Central Kenya Rift case study.

    PubMed

    Olaka, Lydia A; Wilke, Franziska D H; Olago, Daniel O; Odada, Eric O; Mulch, Andreas; Musolff, Andreas

    2016-03-01

    Groundwater is used extensively in the Central Kenya Rift for domestic and agricultural demands. In these active rift settings groundwater can exhibit high fluoride levels. In order to address water security and reduce human exposure to high fluoride in drinking water, knowledge of the source and geochemical processes of enrichment are required. A study was therefore carried out within the Naivasha catchment (Kenya) to understand the genesis, enrichment and seasonal variations of fluoride in the groundwater. Rocks, rain, surface and groundwater sources were sampled for hydrogeochemical and isotopic investigations, the data was statistically and geospatially analyzed. Water sources have variable fluoride concentrations between 0.02-75 mg/L. 73% exceed the health limit (1.5mg/L) in both dry and wet seasons. F(-) concentrations in rivers are lower (0.2-9.2mg/L) than groundwater (0.09 to 43.6 mg/L) while saline lake waters have the highest concentrations (0.27-75 mg/L). The higher values are confined to elevations below 2000 masl. Oxygen (δ(18)O) and hydrogen (δD) isotopic values range from -6.2 to +5.8‰ and -31.3 to +33.3‰, respectively, they are also highly variable in the rift floor where they attain maximum values. Fluoride base levels in the precursor vitreous volcanic rocks are higher (between 3750-6000 ppm) in minerals such as cordierite and muscovite while secondary minerals like illite and kaolinite have lower remnant fluoride (<1000 ppm). Thus, geochemical F(-) enrichment in regional groundwater is mainly due to a) rock alteration, i.e. through long residence times and natural discharge and/or enhanced leakages of deep seated geothermal water reservoirs, b) secondary concentration fortification of natural reservoirs through evaporation, through reduced recharge and/or enhanced abstraction and c) through additional enrichment of fluoride after volcanic emissions. The findings are useful to help improve water management in Naivasha as well as similar

  13. Structure of the central Terror Rift, western Ross Sea, Antarctica

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hall, Jerome; Wilson, Terry; Henrys, Stuart

    2007-01-01

    The Terror Rift is a zone of post-middle Miocene faulting and volcanism along the western margin of the West Antarctic Rift System. A new seismic data set from NSF geophysical cruise NBP04-01, integrated with the previous dataset to provide higher spatial resolution, has been interpreted in this study in order to improve understanding of the architecture and history of the Terror Rift. The Terror Rift contains two components, a structurally-controlled rollover anticlinal arch intruded by younger volcanic bodies and an associated synclinal basin. Offsets and trend changes in fault patterns have been identified, coincident with shifts in the location of depocenters that define rift sub-basins, indicating that the Terror Rift is segmented by transverse structures. Multiple phases of faulting all post-date 17 Ma, including faults cutting the seafloor surface, indicating Neogene rifting and possible modern activity.

  14. Mode of rifting in magmatic-rich setting: Tectono-magmatic evolution of the Central Afar rift system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stab, Martin; Bellahsen, Nicolas; Pik, Raphaël; Leroy, Sylvie; Ayalew, Dereje

    2014-05-01

    Observation of deep structures related to break-up processes at volcanic passive margins (VPM) is often a troublesome exercise: thick pre- to syn-breakup seaward-dipping reflectors (SDR) usually mask the continent-ocean boundary and hide the syn-rift tectonic structures that accommodate crustal stretching and thinning. Some of the current challenges are about clarifying 1) if tectonic stretching fits the observed thinning and 2) what is the effect of continuous magma supply and re-thickening of the crust during extension from a rheological point of view? The Afar region in Ethiopia is an ideal natural laboratory to address those questions, as it is a highly magmatic rift that is probably close enough to breakup to present some characteristics of VPM. Moreover, the structures related to rifting since Oligocene are out-cropping, onshore and well preserved. In this contribution, we present new structural field data and lavas (U-Th/He) datings along a cross-section from the Ethiopian Plateau, through the marginal graben down to the Manda-Hararo active rift axis. We mapped continent-ward normal fault array affecting highly tilted trapp series unconformably overlain by tilted Miocene (25-7 Ma) acid series. The main extensional and necking/thinning event took place during the end of this Miocene magmatic episode. It is itself overlain by flat lying Pliocene series, including the Stratoid. Balanced cross-sections of those areas allow us to constrain a surface stretching factor of about 2.1-2.9. Those findings have the following implications: - High beta factor constrained from field observations is at odd with thinning factor of ~1.3 predicted by seismic and gravimetric studies. We propose that the continental crust in Central Afar has been re-thickened by the emplacement of underplated magma and SDR. - The deformation in Central Afar appears to be largely distributed through space and time. It has been accommodated in a 200-300 km wide strip being a diffuse incipient

  15. Magmatic history of Red Sea rifting: perspective from the central Saudi Arabian coastal plain.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pallister, J.S.

    1987-01-01

    An early stage of magmatism related to Red Sea rifting is recorded by a Tertiary dyke complex and comagmatic volcanic rocks exposed on the central Saudi Arabian coastal plain. Field relations and new K/Ar dates indicate episodic magmatism from approx 30 m.y. to the present day and rift-related magmatism as early as 50 m.y. Localized volcanism and sheeted dyke injection ceased at approx 20 m.y. and were replaced by the intrusion of thick gabbro dykes, marking the onset of sea-floor spreading in the central Red Sea. Differences in the depths and dynamics of mantle-melt extraction and transport may account for the transition from mixed alkaline-subalkaline bimodal magmatism of the pre-20 m.y. rift basin to exclusively subalkaline (tholeiitic) magmatism of the Red Sea spreading axis and the alkali basalt volcanism inland.-L.C.H.

  16. Lithological Influences on Occurrence of High-Fluoride Waters in The Central Kenya Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olaka, L. A.; Musolff, A.; Mulch, A.; Olago, D.; Odada, E. O.

    2013-12-01

    Within the East African rift, groundwater recharge results from the complex interplay of geology, land cover, geomorphology, climate and on going volcano-tectonic processes across a broad range of spatial and temporal scales. The interrelationships between these factors create complex patterns of water availability, reliability and quality. The hydrochemical evolution of the waters is further complex due to the different climatic regimes and geothermal processes going on in this area. High fluoridic waters within the rift have been reported by few studies, while dental fluorosis is high among the inhabitants of the rift. The natural sources of fluoride in waters can be from weathering of fluorine bearing minerals in rocks, volcanic or fumarolic activities. Fluoride concentration in water depends on a number of factors including pH, temperature, time of water-rock formation contact and geochemical processes. Knowledge of the sources and dispersion of fluoride in both surface and groundwaters within the central Kenya rift and seasonal variations between wet and dry seasons is still poor. The Central Kenya rift is marked by active tectonics, volcanic activity and fumarolic activity, the rocks are majorly volcanics: rhyolites, tuffs, basalts, phonolites, ashes and agglomerates some are highly fractured. Major NW-SE faults bound the rift escarpment while the rift floor is marked by N-S striking faults We combine petrographic, hydrochemistry and structural information to determine the sources and enrichment pathways of high fluoridic waters within the Naivasha catchment. A total of 120 water samples for both the dry season (January-February2012) and after wet season (June-July 2013) from springs, rivers, lakes, hand dug wells, fumaroles and boreholes within the Naivasha catchment are collected and analysed for fluoride, physicochemical parameters and stable isotopes (δ2 H, δ18 O) in order to determine the origin and evolution of the waters. Additionally, 30 soil and

  17. The development of the East African Rift system in north-central Kenya

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hackman, B. D.; Charsley, T. J.; Key, R. M.; Wilkinson, A. F.

    1990-11-01

    Between 1980 and 1986 geological surveying to produce maps on a scale of 1:250,000 was completed over an area of over 100,000 km 2 in north-central Kenya, bounded by the Equator, the Ethiopian border and longitudes 36° and 38 °E. The Gregory Rift, much of which has the structure of an asymmetric half-graben, is the most prominent component of the Cenozoic multiple rift system which extends up to 200 km to the east and for about 100 km to the west, forming the Kenya dome. On the eastern shoulder and fringes two en echelon arrays of late Tertiary to Quaternary multicentre shields can be recognized: to the south is the Aberdares-Mount Kenya-Nyambeni Range chain and, to the north the clusters of Mount Kulal, Asie, Huri Hills and Marsabit, with plateau lavas and fissure vents south of Marsabit in the Laisamis area. The Gregory Rift terminates at the southern end of Lake Turkana. Further north the rift system splays: the arcuate Kinu Sogo fault zone forms an offset link with the central Ethiopian Rift system. In the rifts of north-central Kenya volcanism, sedimentation and extensional tectonics commenced and have been continuous since the late Oligocene. Throughout this period the Elgeyo Fault acted as a major bounding fault. A comparative study of the northern and eastern fringes of the Kenya dome with the axial graben reinforces the impression of regional E-W asymmetry. Deviations from the essential N-trend of the Gregory Rift reflect structural weaknesses in the underlying Proterozoic basement, the Mozambique Orogenic Belt: thus south of Lake Baringo the swing to the southeast parallels the axes of the ca. 620 Ma phase folds. Secondary faults associated with this flexure have created a "shark tooth" array, an expression of en echelon offsets of the eastern margin of the Gregory Rift in a transtensional stress regime: hinge zones where major faults intersect on the eastern shoulder feature intense box faulting and ramp structures which have counterparts in the rift

  18. Analysis of Proterozoic rifting and subsequent subsidence of the Central Congo Basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kadima Kabongo, Etienne; Sebagenzi Mwene Ntabwoba, Stanislas; Lucazeau, Francis

    2010-05-01

    The Central Basin (or Cuvette Centrale) of Congo is a late-Proterozoic to Recent basin covering near one million km2 with up to 9 km of sediment. Its subsidence has been related to a preexisting failed rift (Daly et al, 1992), whose origin, geometry and structure remain largely unknown. Here we present a combined analysis of subsidence and gravity that provides new lines of evidence for a rift origin. Although the dataset for the Central Basin is poor and has not been improved for a long time (only four deep wells with depths between 1856 and 4666 meters and 33 seismic lines covering 2900 km), it is sufficient for the first order characteristics. The analysis of wells data reveals that the long term subsidence (~450 m.y.) and present-day surface heat flow (~40 mWm-2) are both characteristic of a 250 km thick thermal lithosphere. This is consistent with the Archean age of the craton but not with thermal reworking during Paleozoic as hypothesized by Artemieva (2006). From the seismic lines, we can derive a 3D geometrical basin model divided into three different units defined by two major uncomformities. Each layer is assigned an average density value inferred from geophysical logs and then gravity effect is determined and subtracted from the observed gravity anomalies. The residual map shows a positive SE-NW elongated structure that can be related to a possible rift prior to basin subsidence. In order to determine the associated crustal structure, we simply assumed that the post-rift subsidence is flexural and that the rift isostasy is governed by a depth of necking. The procedure involves first flexural backstripping of sediments assuming a given Equivalent Elastic Thickness EET and then determination of the crustal thickness assuming a given depth of necking DON. EET and DON are varied in order to obtain the minimum misfit between predicted and observed gravity. The best results are obtained for EET = 100 km, DON = 10 km and an initial crust thickness of 35 km. The

  19. Modes of rifting in magma-rich settings: Tectono-magmatic evolution of Central Afar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stab, Martin; Bellahsen, Nicolas; Pik, Raphaël.; Quidelleur, Xavier; Ayalew, Dereje; Leroy, Sylvie

    2016-01-01

    Recent research in Afar (northern Ethiopia) has largely focused on the formation of the present-day ocean-continent transition at active segments (e.g., Manda Hararo). However, the Oligo-Miocene history of extension, from the onset of rifting at ~25 Ma to the eruption of the massive Stratoïd flood basalts at ~4 Ma, remains poorly constrained. Here we present new structural data and radiometric dating from Central Afar, obtained along a zone stretching from the undeformed Oligocene Ethiopian plateau to the Manda Hararo and Tat'Ale active volcanic segments. Basaltic and rhyolitic formations were mapped in two key areas corresponding to the proximal and distal parts of a half-rift. We present a balanced composite cross section of Central Afar, reconstructed using our new data and previously published geophysical data on the crustal structure. Our main findings are as follows: (1) Extension during the Mio-Pliocene corresponds to a "wide rift" style of rifting. (2) The lower crust has been underplated/intruded and rethickened during rifting by magmatic injection. (3) Our restoration points to the existence of midcrustal shear zones that have helped to distribute extension in the upper crust and to localize extension at depth in a necking zone. Moreover, we suggest that there is a close relationship between the location of a shear zone and the underplated/intruded material. In magma-rich environments such as Central Afar, breakup should be achieved once the initial continental crust has been completely replaced by the newly, magmatically accreted crust. Consequently, and particularly in Afar, crustal thickness is not necessarily indicative of breakup but instead reflects differences in tectono-magmatic regimes.

  20. Initiation and development of the Kivu rift segment in Central Africa by reactivating un-favorably oriented structural weaknesses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Delvaux, Damien; Smets, Benoît

    2015-04-01

    The Kivu rift region forms the central segment of the western branch of the East African rift system, between the northern termination of the Tanganyika rift and the southern extension of the Edward-George rift. Its structure and geological evolution has been revised in the light of a compilation of existing data on earthquake epicenters, focal depth, focal mechanisms, thermal springs and neotectonic faults. It has long been shown that the link between the Kivu rift basin and the Northern termination of the Tanganyika rift basin forms an accommodation zone in which the Rusizi tectonic depression occupies a central place (Ebinger, 1989). In addition, our compilation suggests that the NNE-trending Kivu rift basin and the N-S northern half of the Tanganyika rift basin initiated as separated, partly overlapping and differently oriented basins. The orientation and development of the Kivu rift basin was controlled by an inferred Mid-Proterozoic crustal shear zone and a Pan-African reverse fault front. It was not optimally oriented with the general (first-order) stress field characterized by roughly E-W extension. In a later stage, the more optimally N-S oriented North Tanganyika basin progressed towards the North and connected to Kivu rift in its middle in a region now occupied by the town of Bukavu. This accommodation zone is marked by Quaternary volcanism, warm thermal springs, frequent and relatively shallow seismicity. The southwestern part of the Kivu rift became progressively abandoned but it is still seismically active and hosts a number of warm thermal springs. This particular architecture influences the present-day stress field. This work is a contribution to the Belgian GeoRisCA project. Ebinger, C.J. 1989. Geometric and kinematic development of border faults and accommodation zones, Kivu-Rusizi Rift, Africa. Tectonics, 8, 117-133

  1. Petroleum geology of rift basins in Niger, Chad, and Central African Republic

    SciTech Connect

    Genik, G.J. )

    1991-08-01

    Ten Cretaceous-Tertiary rift basins in Niger, Chad and the Central African Republic (C.A.R.) are defined and the petroleum geology is overviewed based on proprietary exploration results derived from more than one million km{sup 2} of aeromagnetics, 10,520 line-km of gravity profiles, 49,721 km of reflection seismic, and 50 exploration wells. The data were acquired by Exxon with partners Shell, Chevron, Elf, Conoco, Texaco, and Amax Oil Gas During 1969-1989. In Niger and Chad, the West African rift subsystem includes the extensional basins of Termit, Tefidet, Tenere, Grein/Kafra, N'Djel Edji, and Bongor. These rift basins contain up to 15,000 m of Cretaceous to Cenozoic continental and marine clastics. Key exploration elements are Tertiary and Cretaceous fluvial to tidal sandstone reservoirs, Tertiary and Cretaceous marine to lacustrine shale source rocks and seals, with traps in normal fault blocks and anticlinal closures. There have been six oil discoveries in the Termit basin. In C.A.R., the Central African rift subsystem incorporates the extensional Doba and transtensional Doseo and Salamat basins flanking the Borogop dextral wrench fault. These basins contain up to 7,500 m of chiefly Cretaceous continental clastics. key exploration elements are Lower and Upper Cretaceous fluvial to lacustrine sandstone reservoirs, Lower Cretaceous lacustrine shale source rocks, lacustrine to flood-plain shale and mudstone seals, with traps in mainly faulted anticlinal closures. There have been six oil discoveries in the Doba basin and three in the Doseo basin. The studied petroleum geology in the rifts of Niger, Chad, and C.A.R. indicates that potentially commercial volumes of oil remain to be discovered.

  2. Petroleum geology of rift basins in Niger, Chad, and the Central African Republic

    SciTech Connect

    Genik, G.J. )

    1991-03-01

    Ten Cretaceous-Tertiary rift basins in Niger, Chad, and the Central African Republic (C.A.R.) are defined and the petroleum geology is overviewed. This paper is based on proprietary exploration results derived from more than 1 million km{sup 2} of aeromagnetics, 10,520 line km of gravity profiles, 49,721 km of reflection seismic, and 50 exploration wells. The data were acquired by Exxon with partners Shell, Chevron, Elf, Conoco, Texaco, and Amax Oil Gas, Inc., during the years 1969-1989. In Niger and Chad, the West African rift subsystem includes the extensional basins of Termit, Tefidet, Tenere, Grein/Kafra, N'Djel Edji, and Bongor. These rift basins contain up to 15,000 m of Cretaceous to Cenozoic continental and marine clastics. Key exploration elements are Tertiary and Cretaceous fluvial to tidal sandstone reservoirs, Tertiary and Cretaceous marine to lacustrine shale source rocks, and seals, with traps in normal fault blocks and anticlinal closures. There are six oil discoveries in the Termit basin. In Chad and the C.A.R., the Central African rift subsystem incorporates the extensional Doba and transtensional Doseo and Salamat basins flanking the Borogop dextral wrench fault. These basins contain up to 7,500 m of chiefly Cretaceous continental clastics. Key exploration elements are Lower and Upper Cretaceous fluvial to lacustrine sandstone reservoirs, Lower Cretaceous lacustrine shale source rocks, lacustrine to flood plain shale and mudstone seals, with traps in mainly faulted anticlinal closures. There are six oil discoveries in the Doba basin and three in the Doseo basin. The studied petroleum geology in the rifts of Niger, Chad, and the C.A.R. indicates that potentially commercial volumes of oil remain to be discovered.

  3. Spatial and temporal variations in fault activity during early development of rift polarity within the offshore Corinth rift, central Greece

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nixon, C. W.; Moyle, A.; McNeill, L. C.; Bell, R. E.; Bull, J. M.; Henstock, T.

    2014-12-01

    The Corinth rift, Greece, is a young, highly active rift. A combined dense network of marine geophysical data and onshore exposure makes Corinth a natural laboratory for investigating early rift and fault formation. Rifts commonly develop a primary polarity during their formation resulting from a dominant fault set. However, how this occurs and develops is less clear. Here we characterise this process by establishing how a dominant fault set develops within the Corinth rift. Using a high spatio-temporal resolution chronostratigraphic and rift fault model, we investigate the variations in the distribution of displacement and faulting along and across the rift axis; focussing on the partitioning of deformation between N- and S-dipping faults, at a temporal resolution of ca. 100 kyr or less. Along-strike cumulative fault displacement profiles indicate overall equal distribution of strain between major S- and N-dipping faults over the last ca. 1.5 Myr. In detail, two peaks in cumulative displacement coincide with the early development of two discrete depocentres before ca. 600 ka. Since this time, displacement has become focussed on N-dipping faults with S-dipping faults becoming less active. Syn-rift isochore maps illuminate this change: a switch in rift polarity from a dominant N-thickening depocentre to a dominant S-thickening depocentre between ca. 530-420 kyr (a rapid change in rift structure and strain distribution). This change is accommodated by transfer of activity between major faults but also by formation of numerous non-basement cutting small faults. As major S-dipping faults decrease in slip rate from ca. 600 ka, they become segmented into smaller faults with variable slip rates. In contrast, N-dipping faults on the rift's southern margin, with increased activity post ~0.5-0.4 Ma, become kinematically and geometrically linked with almost equal slip rates along strike by ca. 130 kyr, controlling the single major depocentre of the present day. Our results

  4. Tectonic development of the SW Arabian Plate margin within the central Arabian flank of the Red Sea rift system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szymanski, E.; Stockli, D. F.; Johnson, P. R.; Kattan, F. H.; Cosca, M. A.

    2009-12-01

    The Red Sea rift system is a prime example of continental rifting and has contributed significantly to our understanding of the geologic processes that manage the rupture of continental lithosphere. Using a combined geo- and thermochronometric approach, we explore the modes and mechanisms of rift margin development by studying Red Sea rift-related geologic products along the central Saudi Arabian flank of the rift system, north of Jeddah. We use apatite and zircon (U-Th)/He thermochronometry and whole-rock 40Ar/39Ar dating of basalt to define the spatiotemporal relationship between rift flank extensional structures and rift-related harrat volcanism. This technical approach permits the reconstruction of the tectonic margin from early rift architecture, to strain distribution during progressive rifting, and through subsequent whole-scale modifications of the rift flank due to thermal and isostatic factors. Constraints on the dynamics of rift flank deformation are achieved through the collection of geologic samples along long-baseline thermochronometric transects that traverse the entire Arabian shield from the coastal escarpment to the inland Paleozoic sedimentary cover sequences. Long-baseline transects resolve the timing of rift flank uplift and reveal the pattern of lithospheric modification during the rupturing of continental lithosphere. Locally, short-baseline elevation transects map the footwall exhumation of major normal faults that delineate both the modern rift margin and inland extensional basins such as the NW-trending Hamd-Jizil basin, a prominent syn-extensional basin comprised of two distinct half-grabens (Jizil and Hamd) located NW of Medina. Diffuse lithospheric extension during the Oligo-Miocene affected a widespread area well inboard from the modern rift margin; samples from footwall blocks that bound the inland Jizil and Hamd half-grabens yield apatite (U-Th)/He cooling ages of 14.7 ± 0.9 Ma and 24.5 ± 1.5 Ma, respectively. The mid-Miocene age

  5. Rift tectonics and limestone sedimentation: Jurassic of the central and eastern High Atlas, Morocco

    SciTech Connect

    Warme, J.E.; Hazlett, B.H.; Crevello, P.D.; Letsch, D.K.; Burke, R.B. )

    1988-08-01

    The central and eastern High Atlas ranges of southern Morocco represent deposition in an Early to Middle Jurassic rift which first collected continental basalts, red beds, and evaporites. Carbonate deposition was initiated by a euxinic phase, followed by a mosaic of normal marine limestones and marls controlled by regional subsidence and local differential fault-block movements and overprinted by global sea level changes. The High Atlas is now an en echelon series of high-angle reverse faults, creating abrupt and discontinuous fault-bounded ridges separated by broad synclines. Facies relationships of the Jurassic carbonates show that the faults were originally synrift normal faults, probably transtensional, now structurally reversed. Overlying Aalenian to Bajocian shelf limestones prograded into an axial seaway filled with thick marls, punctuated in the Bajocian by horizons of spectacularly exposed coralgal reefs which appear structurally isolated on separate fault blocks. Sedimentation eventually outpaced subsidence, culminating in continental deposits as the sea finally retreated in the mid-Dogger. Although abundant potential source rocks of this rift are thermally overmature, the basin serves as a well-exposed model for comparison with carbonate-filled rifts elsewhere.

  6. Receiver function constraints on crustal seismic velocities and partial melting in the Red Sea Rift, Central Afar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reed, C. A.; Almadani, S.; Gao, S. S.; Elsheikh, A. A.; Cherie, S.; Thurmond, A. K.; Liu, K. H.

    2013-12-01

    The Afar Depression is currently a unique locale for the investigation of crustal and mantle processes involved in the transition from continental to oceanic rifting. To provide high-quality images of the crust and upper mantle beneath the Red Sea Rift in Central Afar, we deployed an array of 18 broadband seismic stations in 2010 and 2011. Here we report receiver function stacking results to investigate crustal properties of this presumably incipient oceanic rift. Stacking of approximately 2200 radial receiver functions along the ~200 km long array reveals an average crustal thickness of 22 km, ranging from nearly 18 km within the Red Sea Rift axis to approximately 30 km within the overlap zone between the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden rift axes. The resulting anomalously high Vp/Vs ratios systematically decrease toward the northeast, ranging from 2.40 southwest of the Tendaho Graben to 1.85 within the overlap zone. We utilize theoretical Vp and melt fraction relationships to constrain a highly reduced average crustal P-velocity of 5.0 km/s within the rift axis, which is characterized by a melt percentage of ~11% confined primarily to the lower crust while the overlap zone contains relatively minor quantities of partial melt. An observed asymmetric distribution of high Vp/Vs values within the Tendaho Graben, as well as regionally maximum values on the southwestern rift flank, suggest crustal magmas either delivered from off-axis subcrustal magma chambers or as material present as residuum from the Red Sea Rift axis migration. Comparisons of these crustal properties beneath the Red Sea Rift and those found beneath mature mid-ocean ridges suggest the locus of extensional strain within the Central Afar is currently diffuse and in the process of localizing toward the Tendaho Graben accompanying the northeastward migration of the Afar Triple Junction.

  7. Crustal Architecture of the Inverted Central Lapland Rift Along the HUKKA 2007 Profile

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tiira, Timo; Janik, Tomasz; Kozlovskaya, Elena; Grad, Marek; Korja, Annakaisa; Komminaho, Kari; HegedŰs, Endre; Kovács, Csaba Attila; Silvennoinen, Hanna; BrŰckl, Ewald

    2014-07-01

    We have studied the lateral velocity variations along a partly buried inverted paleo-rift in Central Lapland, Northern Europe with a 2D wide-angle reflection and refraction experiment, HUKKA 2007. The experiment was designed to use seven chemical explosions from commercial and military sites as sources of seismic energy. The shots were recorded by 102 stations with an average spacing of 3.45 km. Two-dimensional crustal models of variations in P-wave velocity and Vp/Vs-ratio were calculated using the ray tracing forward modeling technique. The HUKKA 2007 experiment comprises a 455 km long profile that runs NNW-SSE parallel to the Kittilä Shear Zone, a major deformation zone hosting gold deposits in the area. The profile crosses Paleoproterozoic and reactivated Archean terranes of Central Lapland. The velocity model shows a significant difference in crustal velocity structure between the northern (distances 0-120 km) and southern parts of the profile. The difference in P-wave velocities and Vp/Vs ratio can be followed through the whole crust down to the Moho boundary indicating major tectonic boundaries. Upper crustal velocities seem to vary with the terranes/compositional differences mapped at the surface. The lower layer of the upper crust displays velocities of 6.0-6.1 km/s. Both Paleoproterozoic and Archean terranes are associated with high velocity bodies (6.30-6.35 km/s) at 100 and 200-350 km distances. The Central Lapland greenstone belt and Central Lapland Granitoid complex are associated with a 4 km-thick zone of unusually low velocities (<6.0 km/s) at distances between 120 and 220 km. We interpret the HUKKA 2007 profile to image an old, partly buried, inverted continental rift zone that has been closed and modified by younger tectonic events. It has structural features typical of rifts: inward dipping rift shoulders, undulating thickness of the middle crust, high velocity lower crust and a rather uniform crustal thickness of 48 km.

  8. Evidence from mantle xenoliths for lithosphere removal beneath the central Rio Grande Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Byerly, Benjamin L.; Lassiter, John C.

    2012-11-01

    Seismic tomography beneath the Central Rio Grande Rift (RGR) at ˜34°N shows a low P and S wave velocity zone in the mantle that extends up the base of the Moho. This low-velocity region has been interpreted by (Gao et al., 2004) to be the result of convective removal of a portion of the once >100 km thick Proterozoic lithosphere. The amount of extension in the central RGR is thought to be low (˜25%) and thus cannot account for the amount of lithosphere thinning suggested by seismic tomography. We measured whole rock and mineral major element, trace element, and isotopic compositions of spinel-peridotite xenoliths erupted along the central axis of the rift (Elephant Butte) and the eastern margin of the Colorado Plateau (Cerro Chato) to determine their depth of origin and mantle provenance and to test the delamination hypothesis. If lithosphere removal has not occurred and the low P and S wave velocities are instead the result of hydration or melt infiltration in the lithosphere, then xenoliths erupted on the rift axis should have geochemical compositions similar to Proterozoic sub-continental lithospheric mantle (SCLM). At Cerro Chato, on the margin of the Colorado Plateau, xenoliths were derived from ˜60 km depth and have geochemical signatures similar to Proterozoic sub-continental lithospheric mantle (e.g. refractory major element compositions, LREE-enrichment, enriched Sr and Nd isotopes, unradiogenic Os isotopes). At Elephant Butte, along the central rift axis, two distinct groups of xenoliths are present. The majority of xenoliths from Elephant Butte are LREE-depleted and have fertile major element compositions. Additionally, these xenoliths have isotopic signatures similar to the range for DMM (e.g. 87Sr/86Sr ranging from 0.7018 to 0.7023, ɛNd ranging from 7 to 21, and 187Os/188Os ranging from 0.122 to 0.130). We interpret this group of xenoliths to be derived from asthenospheric mantle. A less-abundant group of xenoliths at Elephant Butte are LREE

  9. Middle to late cenozoic magmatism of the southeastern Colorado plateau and central Rio Grande rift (New Mexico and Arizona, U.S.A.) : a model for continental rifting

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Baldridge, W.S.; Perry, F.V.; Vaniman, D.T.; Nealey, L.D.; Leavy, B.D.; Laughlin, A.W.; Kyle, P.; Bartov, Y.; Steinitz, G.; Gladney, E.S.

    1991-01-01

    The region of the present Rio Grande rift and southeastern Colorado Plateau underwent lithospheric extension during middle to late Cenozoic deformation affecting the entire southwestern U.S. Lithospheric mantle was disrupted, and in many regions displaced or replaced by asthenospheric mantle at depths from which basaltic magmas were derived and erupted to the surface. Study of the igneous rocks erupted or intruded during this deformation yields insights into processes of magmatism associated with extension of continental lithosphere. Magmatic rocks associated with an early (late Oligocene-early Miocene) ductile phase of extension are dominantly basaltic andesites and related, calc-alkaline intermediate to silicic derivative rocks. Mafic magmas were probably derived from isotopically "enriched" lithospheric mantle. Igneous rocks associated with a later (middle Miocene-Holocene), more brittle phase of extension include widespread basaltic rocks and localized central volcanoes of intermediate to silicic composition. Isotopic compositions of mafic rocks, which include both tholeiitic and alkalic basalts, correlate strongly with tectonic setting and lithospheric structure. Basalts erupted in areas of greatest crustal extension, such as the central and southern rift and Basin and Range province, were derived from isotopically "depleted" (correlated with "asthenospheric") mantle. Also, isotopic compositions of Pliocene to Holocene basalts are slightly more depleted than those of Miocene basalts, suggesting that subcrustal lithospheric mantle was thinned during late Miocene extension. Intermediate rocks of the central volcanoes formed by a complex combination of processes, probably dominated by fractional crystallization and by assimilation of upper and lower crust in isolated, small magma chambers. The petrologic, geochemical, and isotopic data are compatible with a model, derived first from geophysical data, whereby lithosphere is thinned beneath the central rift and

  10. Crustal Rheology and Rifted Margin Architecture: Comparing Iberia-Newfoundland, Central South Atlantic, and South China Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brune, Sascha

    2015-04-01

    Crustal rheology controls the style of rifting and ultimately the architecture of rifted margins: Hot, weak, or thick continental crust is dominated by ductile deformation and extends symmetrically into a wide rift system. Extension in cold, strong, or thin crust is accommodated by brittle faults and ductile shear zones that facilitate narrow rifts with asymmetric fault geometries. This recipe provides the standard framework to understand 2D rift geometry, however, a variety of processes exert significant control on subsequent rift evolution and ultimately on the architecture of rifted margins: inherited structures, melting and volcanism, 3D effects, extension rate, and weakening mechanisms. Numerical forward modelling studies have the opportunity to evaluate the influence of these processes on rift evolution in order to understand the complex interaction between rheology and tectonic history of specific margins. Here I compare the formation of three different magma-poor margin pairs, Iberia-Newfoundland, the Central South Atlantic Rift Segment, and the South China Sea margins within a numerical forward modelling framework. I apply a 2D version of the finite element code SLIM3D, which includes nonlinear temperature- and stress-dependent elasto-visco-plastic rheology and is able to reproduces a wide range of rift-related deformation processes such as flexure, lower crustal flow, and faulting. The Iberia-Newfoundland rifted margins are marked by moderate crustal asymmetry, with ~70 km of hyper-extended crust (less than 10 km thick) on the Iberian side and a very narrow margin on the Newfoundland counterpart. Similar to the Iberia-Newfoundland conjugates, the Central South Atlantic margins are predominantly asymmetric, however involve a much stronger degree of asymmetry with more than 200 km of hyper-extended crust offshore Angola, but only few tens of km at the Brazilian side. Kinematic and numerical modelling suggests that the asymmetry is caused by lateral

  11. The Central Metasedimentary Belt (Grenville Province) as a failed back-arc rift zone: Nd isotope evidence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dickin, A. P.; McNutt, R. H.

    2007-07-01

    Nd isotope data are presented for granitoid orthogneisses from the Central Metasedimentary Belt (CMB) of the Grenville Province in order to map the extent of juvenile Grenvillian-age crust within this orogenic belt that is composed mostly of older crustal terranes. The data reveal a 150 km-wide belt of juvenile crust in Ontario, but this belt contains a block of pre-Grenvillian crust (containing the Elzevir pluton) which yields an estimated crustal formation age of 1.5 Ga. The recognition of an older block within the CMB has profound implications for its structure and tectonic evolution, because it implies that juvenile Grenvillian crust, apparently forming a wide NE-SW belt, is in fact distributed in two narrower segments with approximately N-S strike. We suggest that the CMB comprises an en echelon series of ensimatic rift segments, created by back-arc spreading behind a continental margin arc. These rift segments extend southwards (in the subsurface) into the northeastern Unites States. The rift segments contain abundant marble outcrops, consistent with marine incursion into the rift zone, and these deposits also continue northwards into a 'Marble domain' of the CMB in Quebec. However, crustal formation ages in the latter domain are largely pre-Grenvillian, implying that the Quebec rift segment was ensialic. Hence, we interpret the CMB in Ontario and Quebec as the northern termination of a failed back-arc rift zone.

  12. Sirte Basin, north-central Libya: Cretaceous rifting above a fixed mantle hotspot?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Houten, Franklyn B.

    1983-02-01

    The complex pattern of horsts and grabens in the Sirte Basin may have developed when Mesozoic drift of the African plate put north-central Libya over a fixed mantle hotspot in Early Cretaceous time (140 to 100 m.y. ago). Significant change in the motion of the plate during the prolonged residence above a hypothetical Cameroon plume may have produced stress that fragmented thinned and weakened lithosphere. Successive uplift and subsidence along a reconstructed track of the plume, as well as in the Sirte Basin, are compatible with predicted effects of the drift of northern Africa over a fixed mantle hotspot. This speculation suggests a plausible alternative to the possibility that rifting throughout northern Africa in Early Cretaceous time may have been produced along a wide zone of extension between two African plates when they were at rest relative to underlying plumes.

  13. Petrological and Geochemical characterization of central Chihuahua basalts: a possible local sign of rifting activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Espejel-Garcia, V. V.; Garcia-Rascon, M.; Villalobos-Aragon, A.; Morton-Bermea, O.

    2012-12-01

    The central part of the mexican state, Chihuahua, is the oriental border of the Sierra Madre Occidental (silicic large igneous province), which consist of series of ignimbrites divided into two volcanic groups of andesites and rhyolites. In the central region of Chihuahua, the volcanic rocks are now part of the Basin and Range, allowing the presence of mafic rocks in the lower areas. The study area is located approximately 200 km to the NW of Chihuahua city near to La Guajolota town, in the Namiquipa County. There are at least 5 outcrops of basalts to the west of the road, named Puerto de Lopez, Malpaises, El Tascate, Quebrada Honda, and Carrizalio, respectively. These outcrops have only been previously described by the Mexican Geologic Survey (SGM) as thin basaltic flows, with vesicles filled with quartz, and phenocrystals of labradorite, andesine, oligoclase and olivine. Petrologically, the basalts present different textures, from small phenocrysts of plagioclase in a very fine matrix to large, zoned and sometimes broken phenocrysts of plagioclase in a coarser matrix. All samples have olivine in an advanced state of alteration, iddingsite. The geochemical analyses report that these basaltic flows contain characteristics of rift basalts. The rocks have a normative olivine values from 5.78 to 27.26 and nepheline values from 0 to 2.34. In the TAS diagram the samples straddle the join between basalt and trachy-basalt, reflecting a high K2O content. The Mg# average is 0.297, a value that suggests that the basalts do not come from a primitive magma. The basalts have high values of Ba (945-1334 ppm), Cu (54-147 ppm), and Zn (123-615 ppm). The contents of Rb (23-57 ppm), Sr (659-810 ppm), Y (26-33 ppm), Zr (148-217 ppm) and Cr (79-98 ppm) are characteristics of rift basalts. Using discrimination diagrams, the basalts plot in the field of within plate, supporting the rifting origin. Outcrops of other basalts, at about 80 to 100 km to the east of the study area, Lomas El

  14. Influence of rifted geometry on the variations in style of tectonic thickening between southern Quebec and central Vermont

    SciTech Connect

    Colpron, M.; Warren, M.J. . Dept. of Geological Sciences)

    1993-03-01

    The style of Taconian deformation and metamorphism varies significantly along strike from the Quebec reentrant toward the New York promontory. Comparison of Upper Proterozoic/Lower Cambrian pre-shelf sedimentary sequences between southern Quebec and central Vermont suggests that, despite important similarities, the configurations of the rifted continental crust differed along strike. In southern Quebec, the base of the rift sequence is characterized by extensive flood basalt volcanism (Tibbit Hill Fm.). The basaltic rocks were subsequently deformed by block-faulting, which acted as basement to overlying rift-clastic sediments. In central Vermont, mafic dikes cut the Middle Proterozoic Lincoln massif and are unconformably overlain by the basal rift sequence. In both areas, a hinge zone, marking the transition between relatively unsubsided and significantly attenuated continental crust, developed early in the sedimentation history. West of the hinge zone, the basal rift-clastic rocks are characterized by a relatively thin sequence indicative of shallow subaqueous to subaerial deposition (Pinnacle Fm.), capped by a dolomitic horizon (White Brook Fm. and Forestdale Mb.) and a disconformity marking renewed extension. East of the hinge zone, rift-clastic rocks are thicker, generally finer-grained, and commonly contain mafic rocks of tholeiitic affinity. In southern Quebec and northern Vermont, significant subsidence accompanied the post-White Brook/Forestdale episode of extension. In contrast, the basement high of the Lincoln massif remained largely unsubsided until the onset of thermal subsidence in the Early Cambrian. Both in southern Quebec and central Vermont, early Taconian deformation was characterized by sub-horizontal westward transport of distal clastic sedimentary rocks.

  15. Mineralization potential along the trend of the Keweenawan- age Central North American Rift System in Iowa, Nebraska, and Kansas

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Berendsen, P.

    1989-01-01

    The tectonic and sedimentary environment of the Central North American Rift System (CNARS) provides an excellent setting for major mineral deposits. Major north-northeast-trending high-angle normal or reverse faults and northwest-trending transcurrent fault systems may exercise control over ore forming processes. Gabbro and basalt are the dominant igneous rock types. Carbonatite and kimberlite occur in Nebraska and Kansas. Concentrations of Cu, Ni, Co, Ti, Au, Ag and PG minerals are known to occur in this setting. Arkosic sandstone, siltstone, shale, and minor carbonate units occur on top of the rift basalts and in flanking basins where they may reach thicknesses of 10 km (6 miles). The potential for stratiform or unconformity-related metalliferous deposits should be considered. The rift as a whole remains largely unexplored.

  16. Seismic structure of the Central US crust and shallow upper mantle: Uniqueness of the Reelfoot Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pollitz, Fred F.; Mooney, Walter D.

    2014-09-01

    Using seismic surface waves recorded with Earthscope's Transportable Array, we apply surface wave imaging to determine 3D seismic velocity in the crust and uppermost mantle. Our images span several Proterozoic and early Cambrian rift zones (Mid-Continent Rift, Rough Creek Graben-Rome trough, Birmingham trough, Southern Oklahoma Aulacogen, and Reelfoot Rift). While ancient rifts are generally associated with low crustal velocity because of the presence of thick sedimentary sequences, the Reelfoot Rift is unique in its association with low mantle seismic velocity. Its mantle low-velocity zone (LVZ) is exceptionally pronounced and extends down to at least 200 km depth. This LVZ is of variable width, being relatively narrow (∼50 km wide) within the northern Reelfoot Rift, which hosts the New Madrid Seismic Zone (NMSZ). We hypothesize that this mantle volume is weaker than its surroundings and that the Reelfoot Rift consequently has relatively low elastic plate thickness, which would tend to concentrate tectonic stress within this zone. No other intraplate ancient rift zone is known to be associated with such a deep mantle low-velocity anomaly, which suggests that the NMSZ is more susceptible to external stress perturbations than other ancient rift zones.

  17. Differential opening of the Central and South Atlantic Oceans and the opening of the West African rift system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fairhead, J. D.; Binks, R. M.

    1991-02-01

    Plate tectonic studies of the development of the Central and South Atlantic Oceans using Seasat and Geosat altimeter and magnetic anomaly isochron data now provide quantitative models of seafloor spreading through time. Such models enable an initial assessment of the differential opening between these two oceanic basins to be determined. The Equatorial Atlantic is an integral part of this oceanic rifting process, allowing stresses arising from the differential opening to be dissipated into both the Caribbean and Africa along its northern and southern boundaries respectively. The tectonic model for the West African rift system, based on geological and geophysical studies, shows a series of strike-slip fault zones diverging into Africa from the Gulf of Guinea and dissipating their shear movement into the development of extensional basins orientated perpendicular to these faults zones. The development of the West African rift system was contemporaneous with the early opening of the South Atlantic, continued to develop well after the final breakup of South America from Africa and did not cease until the late Cretaceous when there was a major phase of basin inversion and deformation. Santonian ( ~ 80 Ma) deformation across the Benue Trough (Nigeria) is broadly contemporaneous with dextral shear reactivation of the central African fracture system which, in turn resulted in renewed extension in the Sudan basins during the late Cretaceous and early Tertiary. This paper illustrates the close linkage in both time and space between the history of the African rift basins and the opening of the Atlantic. Both exhibit distinct phases of evolution with the rift basins developing in direct response to the differential opening between the Central and South Atlantic in order to dissipate stresses generated by this opening. The Mesozoic tectonic model proposed is therefore one of an intimate interaction between oceanic and continental tectonics.

  18. Basement control in the development of the early cretaceous West and Central African rift system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maurin, Jean-Christophe; Guiraud, René

    1993-12-01

    The structural framework of the Precambrian basement of the West and Central African Rift System (WCARS) is described in order to examine the role of ancient structures in the development of this Early Cretaceous rift system. Basement structures are represented in the region by large Pan-African mobile belts (built at ca. 600 Ma) surrounding the > 2 Ga West African, Congo and Sao Francisco cratons. Except for the small Gao trough (eastern Mali) located near the contact nappe of the Pan-African Iforas suture zone along the edge of the West African craton, the entire WCARS is located within the internal domains of the Pan-African mobile belts. Within these domains, two main structural features occur as the main basement control of the WCARS: (1) an extensive network of near vertical shear zones which trend north-south through the Congo, Brazil, Nigeria, Niger and Algeria, and roughly east-west through northeastern Brazil and Central Africa. The shear zones correspond to intra-continental strike-slip faults which accompanied the oblique collision between the West African, Congo, and Sao Francisco cratons during the Late Proterozoic; (2) a steep metamorphic NW-SE-trending belt which corresponds to a pre-Pan-African (ca. 730 Ma) ophiolitic suture zone along the eastern edge of the Trans-Saharian mobile belt. The post-Pan-African magmatic and tectonic evolution of the basement is also described in order to examine the state of the lithosphere prior to the break-up which occurred in the earliest Cretaceous. After the Pan-African thermo-tectonic event, the basement of the WCARS experienced a long period of intra-plate magmatic activity. This widespread magmatism in part relates to the activity of intra-plate hotspots which have controlled relative uplift, subsidence and occasionally block faulting. During the Paleozoic and the early Mesozoic, this tectonic activity was restricted to west of the Hoggar, west of Aïr and northern Cameroon. During the Late Jurassic

  19. Oblique rift opening revealed by reoccurring magma injection in central Iceland.

    PubMed

    Ruch, Joël; Wang, Teng; Xu, Wenbin; Hensch, Martin; Jónsson, Sigurjón

    2016-01-01

    Extension deficit builds up over centuries at divergent plate boundaries and is recurrently removed during rifting events, accompanied by magma intrusions and transient metre-scale deformation. However, information on transient near-field deformation has rarely been captured, hindering progress in understanding rifting mechanisms and evolution. Here we show new evidence of oblique rift opening during a rifting event influenced by pre-existing fractures and two centuries of extension deficit accumulation. This event originated from the Bárðarbunga caldera and led to the largest basaltic eruption in Iceland in >200 years. The results show that the opening was initially accompanied by left-lateral shear that ceased with increasing opening. Our results imply that pre-existing fractures play a key role in controlling oblique rift opening at divergent plate boundaries. PMID:27492709

  20. Oblique rift opening revealed by reoccurring magma injection in central Iceland

    PubMed Central

    Ruch, Joël; Wang, Teng; Xu, Wenbin; Hensch, Martin; Jónsson, Sigurjón

    2016-01-01

    Extension deficit builds up over centuries at divergent plate boundaries and is recurrently removed during rifting events, accompanied by magma intrusions and transient metre-scale deformation. However, information on transient near-field deformation has rarely been captured, hindering progress in understanding rifting mechanisms and evolution. Here we show new evidence of oblique rift opening during a rifting event influenced by pre-existing fractures and two centuries of extension deficit accumulation. This event originated from the Bárðarbunga caldera and led to the largest basaltic eruption in Iceland in >200 years. The results show that the opening was initially accompanied by left-lateral shear that ceased with increasing opening. Our results imply that pre-existing fractures play a key role in controlling oblique rift opening at divergent plate boundaries. PMID:27492709

  1. Oblique rift opening revealed by reoccurring magma injection in central Iceland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruch, Joël; Wang, Teng; Xu, Wenbin; Hensch, Martin; Jónsson, Sigurjón

    2016-08-01

    Extension deficit builds up over centuries at divergent plate boundaries and is recurrently removed during rifting events, accompanied by magma intrusions and transient metre-scale deformation. However, information on transient near-field deformation has rarely been captured, hindering progress in understanding rifting mechanisms and evolution. Here we show new evidence of oblique rift opening during a rifting event influenced by pre-existing fractures and two centuries of extension deficit accumulation. This event originated from the Bárðarbunga caldera and led to the largest basaltic eruption in Iceland in >200 years. The results show that the opening was initially accompanied by left-lateral shear that ceased with increasing opening. Our results imply that pre-existing fractures play a key role in controlling oblique rift opening at divergent plate boundaries.

  2. Post-rift unroofing of the NW Africa passive continental margin during the Central Atlantic opening

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghorbal, B.; Bertotti, G.; Andriessen, P. A. M.

    2009-04-01

    Many passive margins considered as being stable for long times, show however late uplift and exhumation at regional scale as assessed by low temperature geochronometry. A large amount of Lower Cretaceous terrigeneous sediments laid down in most of basins along the NW Africa continental margins indicate that a major episode of erosion occurred during early post-rift period in the Central Atlantic. AFT and (U-Th)/He dating performed, along a roughly >500 km N-S transect, on pre-Mesozoic basement rocks from Western Meseta to the Anti-Atlas (Morocco, NW Africa) document a fully unexpected widespread unroofing during the Middle-Late Jurassic to early Late Cretaceous, with AFT and (U-Th)/He ages ranging respectively between 120-170Ma and 115-165Ma. A well documented age cluster of 140±20Ma measured for the Moroccan Meseta, Atlas domains and Anti-Atlas belt designates those domains as potentially being the source areas of the detritic sediments considering the proximity of the depositional basins. Absence of major fault separating the Anti-Atlas from the rest of the Western African Craton during the Mesozoic suggests the unroofing region to extend further in Morocco, as far south as the Reguibat (Mauritania) or even New Guinea, documented by our investigation, and perhaps even further when confirmed by additional AFT and AHe data.

  3. Characterization of the August 2009 New Mexico earthquake swarm in the central Rio Grande rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stankova-Pursley, J.; Bilek, S. L.; Ruhl, C. J.; Aster, R. C.; Rowe, C. A.; Johnson, J. B.

    2009-12-01

    Seismicity in central New Mexico, southwestern United States, is dominated by earthquakes occurring above the mid-crustal Socorro Magma Body (SMB). The SMB is a sill-like feature ≥ 3400 km2 in area, with a top surface at 19-km depth spanning the inner Rio Grande rift half-graben system. Inflation of the magma body at rates of several mm/year, perhaps coupled with shallow transport of aqueous fluids, is the prevailing model for the region’s long-standing and anomalous seismicity. Clustered swarms of small magnitude earthquakes have been noted since the 1860s throughout this region, and have been recorded instrumentally since the early 1960’s. Beginning in late August 2009, a very productive swarm of over 400 earthquakes (as of September 2, 2009) marks the most active period since 2005. Preliminary locations of over 50 of the largest events (local magnitude ML > 0.5) highlight a very small volume (~ 12 km3), suggesting that this swarm has occurred along an isolated portion of a rift-parallel fault. Depths are well-resolved through the use of top-side magma body reflections, and most of these events have occurred between 5 and 6 km depth, although a few occurred shallower. Felt and heard reports have been filed for several of the larger (ML > 1.9) events. We present seismic data from a local short period seismic network, available USArray Transportable Array seismic stations, and a temporary broadband instrument deployment as well as infrasound data from a temporary infrasound deployment to characterize this swarm. Focal mechanisms for the larger earthquakes are determined using all available seismic data and interpreted in the context of local geologic structure. We improve on preliminary network locations by applying waveform cross-correlation to improve arrival time picks. We also estimate a more complete catalog of the seismicity by using similar waveform scanning technique to identify additional events and place in the historical context of cumulative

  4. Transition from a localized to wide deformation along Eastern branch of Central East African Rift: Insights from 3D numerical models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leroy, S. D.; Koptev, A.; Burov, E. B.; Calais, E.; Gerya, T.

    2015-12-01

    The Central East African Rift (CEAR) bifurcates in two branches (eastern, magma-rich and western, magma-poor) surrounding strong Tanzanian craton. Intensive magmatism and continental flood basalts are largely present in many of the eastern rift segments, but other segments, first of all the western branch, exhibit very small volcanic activity. The Eastern rift is characterized by southward progression of the onset of volcanism, the extensional features and topographic expression of the rift vary significantly north-southward: in northern Kenya the deformation is very wide (some 150-250 km in E-W direction), to the south the rift narrows to 60-70 km, yet further to the south the deformation widens again in the so-called Tanzania divergence zone. Widening of the Eastern branch within its southern part is associated with the impingement of the southward-propagating rift on the strong Masai block situated to east of the Tanzanian craton. To understand the mechanisms behind this complex deformation distribution, we implemented a 3Dl ultra-high resolution visco-plastic thermo-mechanical numerical model accounting for thermo-rheological structure of the lithosphere and hence captures essential features of the CEAR. The preferred model has a plume seeded slightly to the northeast of the craton center, consistent with seismic tomography, and produces surface strain distribution that is in good agreement with observed variation of deformation zone width along eastern side of Tanzanian craton: localized above bulk of mantle material deflected by cratonic keel narrow high strain zone (Kenia Rift) is replaced by wide distributed deformations within areas situated to north (northern Kenya, Turkana Rift) and to south (Tanzania divergence, Masai block) of it. These results demonstrate significant differences in the impact of the rheological profile on rifting style in case of dominant active rifting compared to dominant passive rifting. Narrow rifting, conventionally attributed to

  5. Crustal structure during active rifting in the central Salton Trough, California, constrained by the Salton Seismic Imaging Project (SSIP)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Han, L.; Hole, J. A.; Stock, J. M.; Fuis, G. S.; Driscoll, N. W.; Kell, A. M.; Kent, G.; Harding, A. J.; Gonzalez-Fernandez, A.; Lazaro-Mancilla, O.

    2013-12-01

    Seismic refraction and reflection travel times from the Salton Seismic Imaging Project (SSIP) were used to constrain crustal structure during active continental rifting in the central Salton Trough, California. SSIP, funded by NSF and USGS, acquired seismic data in and across the Salton Trough in 2011 to investigate rifting processes at the northern end of the Gulf of California extensional province and earthquake hazards at the southern end of the San Andreas Fault system. Seven lines of refraction and low-fold reflection data were acquired onshore, two lines and a grid of airgun and OBS data were acquired in the Salton Sea, and onshore-offshore data were recorded. North American lithosphere in the central Salton Trough appears to have been rifted apart and replaced by new crust added by magmatism from below and sedimentation from above. Ongoing active rifting of this new crust is manifested by shallow (<10km depth) seismicity in the oblique Brawley Seismic Zone (connecting the Imperial and San Andreas transform faults), the small Salton Buttes volcanoes, and very high heat flow that enables geothermal energy production. Analyses of the onshore-offshore seismic line that extends along the axis of the Salton Trough, parallel to the direction of plate motion, constrains rifted crustal structure. Crystalline basement (~5 km/s) generally occurs at ~4 km depth, but is at 2-3 km depth in a localized region beneath the Salton Buttes and Salton Sea geothermal field. This crystalline rock is interpreted to be late Pliocene to Quaternary Colorado River sediment that has been metamorphosed by high heat flow to a depth of at least 10km. The shallower basement under the volcanic and geothermal field is due to more intense metamorphism and hydrothermal alteration in this region of extreme heat flow. Faster velocity (6.2-6.4 km/s) observed at 10-13 km depth might be the remains of ruptured pre-existing crust or might be produced by deeper magmatism. Seismic travel times indicate

  6. Ethiopian Central Rift Valley basin hydrologic modelling using HEC-HMS and ArcSWAT

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pascual-Ferrer, Jordi; Candela, Lucila; Pérez-Foguet, Agustí

    2013-04-01

    An Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) shall be applied to achieve a sustainable development, to increase population incomes without affecting lives of those who are highly dependent on the environment. First step should be to understand water dynamics at basin level, starting by modeling the basin water resources. For model implementation, a large number of data and parameters are required, but those are not always available, especially in some developing countries where different sources may have different data, there is lack of information on data collection, etc. The Ethiopian Central Rift Valley (CRV) is an endorheic basin covering an area of approximately 10,000 km2. For the period 1996-2005, the average annual volume of rainfall accounted for 9.1 Mm3, and evapotranspiration for 8 Mm3 (Jansen et al., 2007). From the environmental point of view, basin ecosystems are endangered due to human activities. Also, poverty is widespread all over the basin, with population mainly living from agriculture on a subsistence economy. Hence, there is an urgent need to set an IWRM, but datasets required for water dynamics simulation are not too reliable. In order to reduce uncertainty of numerical simulation, two semi-distributed open software hydrologic models were implemented: HEC-HMS and ArcSWAT. HEC-HMS was developed by the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACoE) Hydrologic Engineering Center (HEC) to run precipitation-runoff simulations for a variety of applications in dendritic watershed systems. ArcSWAT includes the SWAT (Soil and Water Assessment Tool, Arnold et al., 1998) model developed for the USDA Agricultural Research Service into ArcGIS (ESRI®). SWAT was developed to assess the impact of land management practices on large complex watersheds with varying soils, land use and management conditions over long periods of time (Neitsch et al., 2005). According to this, ArcSWAT would be the best option for IWRM implementation in the basin. However

  7. Rainwater harvesting for small-scale irrigation of maize in the Central Rift Valley, Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keesstra, Saskia; Hartog, Maaike; Muluneh, Alemayehu; Stroosnijder, Leo

    2013-04-01

    In the Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia, small scale farmers mostly rely on rainfall for crop production. The erratic nature of rainfall causes frequent crop failures and makes the region structurally dependent on food aid. Rainwater Harvesting (RWH) is a technique to collect and store runoff that could provide water for livestock, domestic use or small scale irrigation. Usually, such irrigation is promoted for high value crops, but in the light of regional food security it may become interesting to invest in irrigation of maize. In this research, two cemented RWH cisterns were investigated to determine their economic and social potential for supplemental irrigation of maize using drip irrigation. For this, data from test fields with irrigated maize and monitoring of water levels of the cisterns were used, as well as a survey under 30 farmers living close to the experimental site. The results show that catchment size and management should be in balance with the designed RWH system, to prevent too little runoff or flooding. An analysis with Cropwat 8.0 was used to investigate the possibility of irrigating maize with the observed amounts of water in the RWH cisterns. This would suffice for 0.3-0.8 ha of maize. For a RWH cistern with a drip irrigation system to be economically viable, the production on this acreage should become 3-4 ton/ha; 2.5 times higher than the current yield. But the biggest challenge would be to change the perception of respondents, who don't find it logical to spend precious water on a common crop like maize. Therefore, if the Ethiopian government considers the irrigation of maize to be important for regional food security, it is recommended to either subsidize the construction of RWH cisterns or provide credit on favourable terms.

  8. Evaluating spatial and temporal variations of rainfall erosivity, case of Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meshesha, Derege Tsegaye; Tsunekawa, Atsushi; Tsubo, Mitsuru; Haregeweyn, Nigussie; Adgo, Enyew

    2015-02-01

    Land degradation in many Ethiopian highlands occurs mainly due to high rainfall erosivity and poor soil conservation practices. Rainfall erosivity is an indicator of the precipitation energy and ability to cause soil erosion. In Central Rift Valley (CRV) of Ethiopia, where the climate is characterized as arid and semiarid, rainfall is the main driver of soil erosion that in turn causes a serious expansion in land degradation. In order to evaluate the spatial and temporal variability of rainfall erosivity and its impact on soil erosion, long-term rainfall data (1980-2010) was used, and the monthly Fournier index (FI) and the annual modified Fournier index (MFI) were applied. Student's t test analysis was performed particularly to examine statistical significances of differences in average monthly and annual erosivity values. The result indicated that, in a similar spatial pattern with elevation and rainfall amount, average annual erosivity is also found being higher in western highlands of the valley and gradually decreased towards the east. The long-term average annual erosivity (MFI) showed a general decreasing trend in recent 10 years (2000-2010) as compared to previous 20 years (1980-1999). In most of the stations, average erosivity of main rainy months (May, June, July, and August) showed a decreasing trend, whereby some of them (about 33.3 %) are statically significant at 90 and 95 % confidence intervals but with high variation in spatial pattern of changes. The overall result of the study showed that rainfall aggression (erosivity) in the region has a general decreasing trend in the recent decade as compared to previous decades, especially in the western highlands of the valley. Hence, it implies that anthropogenic factors such as land use change being coupled with topography (steep slope) have largely contributed to increased soil erosion rate in the region.

  9. Searching for evidence of changes in extreme rainfall indices in the Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muluneh, Alemayehu; Bewket, Woldeamlak; Keesstra, Saskia; Stroosnijder, Leo

    2016-02-01

    Extreme rainfall events have serious implications for economic sectors with a close link to climate such as agriculture and food security. This holds true in the Central Rift Valley (CRV) of Ethiopia where communities rely on highly climate-sensitive rainfed subsistence farming for livelihoods. This study investigates changes in ten extreme rainfall indices over a period of 40 years (1970-2009) using 14 meteorological stations located in the CRV. The CRV consists of three landscape units: the valley floor, the escarpments, and the highlands all of which are considered in our data analysis. The Belg (March-May) and Kiremt (June-September) seasons are also considered in the analysis. The Mann-Kendall test was used to detect trends of the rainfall indices. The results indicated that at the annual time scale, more than half (57 %) of the stations showed significant trends in total wet-day precipitation (PRCPTOT) and heavy precipitation days (R10mm). Only 7-35 % of stations showed significant trends, for the other rainfall indices. Spatially, the valley floor received increasing annual rainfall while the escarpments and the highlands received decreasing annual rainfall over the last 40 years. During Belg, 50 % of the stations showed significant increases in the maximum number of consecutive dry days (CDD) in all parts of the CRV. However, most other rainfall indices during Belg showed no significant changes. During Kiremt, considering both significant and non-significant trends, almost all rainfall indices showed an increasing trend in the valley floor and a decreasing trend in the escarpment and highlands. During Belg and Kiremt, the CDD generally showed increasing tendency in the CRV.

  10. Land-use and land-cover dynamics in the central rift valley of Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Garedew, Efrem; Sandewall, Mats; Söderberg, Ulf; Campbell, Bruce M

    2009-10-01

    Understanding the complexity of land-use and land-cover (LULC) changes and their driving forces and impacts on human and environmental security is important for the planning of natural resource management and associated decision making. This study combines and compares participatory field point sampling (pfps) and remote sensing to explore local LULC dynamics. The study was conducted in two peasant associations located in the central Ethiopian Rift Valley, which is a dry-land mixed farming area exposed to rapid deforestation. From 1973-2006, the area of cropland doubled at the expense of woodland and wooded-grassland in both of the study sites. Major deforestation and forest degradation took place from 1973-1986; woodland cover declined from 40% to 9% in one of the study sites, while the other lost all of its original 54% woodland cover. Our study concludes that assessing LULC dynamics using a combination of remote sensing and pfps is a valuable approach. The two methods revealed similar LULC trends, while the pfps provided additional details on how farmers view the changes. This study documents dramatic trends in LULC over time, associated with rapid population growth, recurrent drought, rainfall variability and declining crop productivity. The alarming nature of these trends is reflected in a decrease in the livelihood security of local communities and in environmental degradation. Given these dry-land conditions, there are few opportunities to improve livelihoods and environmental security without external support. If negative changes are to be halted, action must be taken, including building asset bases, instituting family planning services, and creating opportunities outside these marginal environments. PMID:19688359

  11. Topography of the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary below the Upper Rhine Graben Rift and the volcanic Eifel region, Central Europe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seiberlich, C. K. A.; Ritter, J. R. R.; Wawerzinek, B.

    2013-09-01

    We study the crust-mantle and lithosphere-asthenosphere boundaries (Moho and LAB) in Central Europe, specifically below the Upper Rhine Graben (URG) rift, the Eifel volcanic region and their surrounding areas. Teleseismic recordings at permanent and mobile stations are analysed to search for shear (S) wave to compressional (P) wave converted phases. After a special processing these phases are identified in shear wave receiver functions (S-RFs). Conversions from the Moho at 2.9-3.3 s arrival time are the clearest signals in the S-RFs and indicate a relatively flat Moho at 27-30 km depth. A negative polarity conversion signal at 7-9 s arrival time can be explained with a low shear wave velocity zone (LVsZ) in the upper mantle. We use forward S-RF waveform modelling and Monte-Carlo techniques to determine shear wave velocity (vs)-depth (z) profiles which explain the observed S-RF and which outline variations of the lithospheric thickness in the study region. Across the URG rift and its surrounding mountain ranges (Black Forest, Odenwald etc.) the LAB is at a depth of about 60 ± 5 km. This depth is found for the rift itself as well as for the rift shoulders. Southeast and southwest of the URG, in the regions of the Swabian Alb and Vosges Mountains, the LAB dips to about 78 ± 5 km depth. In the volcanic Eifel region the LAB is at a much shallower depth of just 41 ± 5 km. There an upwelling mantle plume thermally eroded the lower lithosphere. The reduction of vs is about 2%-4% in the upper asthenosphere compared to the lower lithosphere. This vs contrast may be explained with a low portion of partial melt or hydrous minerals in the asthenosphere.

  12. Bridging dry spells for maize cropping through supplemental irrigation in the Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muluneh Bitew, Alemayehu; Keesstra, Saskia; Stroosnijder, Leo

    2015-04-01

    Maize yield in the Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia (CRV) suffers from dry spells at sensitive growth stages. Risk of crop failure makes farmers reluctant to invest in fertilizer. This makes the CRV food insecure. There are farms with well-maintained terraces and Rain Water Harvesting (RWH) systems using concrete farms ponds. We tested the hypothesis that in these farms supplemental irrigation with simultaneous crop intensification might boost production of a small maize area sufficient to improve food security. Intensification includes a higher plant density of a hybrid variety under optimum fertilization. First we assessed the probability of occurrence of dry spells. Then we estimated the availability of sufficient runoff in the ponds in dry years. During 2012 (dry) and 2013 (wet) on-farm field research was conducted with 10 combinations of supplemental irrigation and plant density. The simplest was rainfed farming with 30,000 plants ha-1. The most advanced was no water stress and 75,000 plants ha-1. Finally we compared our on-farm yield with that of neighbouring farmers. Because 2013 was a wet year no irrigation was needed. Our long term daily rainfall (1970-2011) analysis proves the occurrence of dry spells during the onset of the maize (Belg months March and April). In March there is hardly enough water in the ponds. So, we advise later sowing. Starting from April available water (runoff from a 2.2 ha catchment) matches crop water requirement (for 0.5 ha maize). Significant differences between grain and total biomass yield were observed between rainfed and other irrigation levels. However, since the largest difference is only 12%, the investment in irrigation non-critical drought years is not worth the effort. There was also a limited effect (18-22%) of increasing plant density. So, we advise not to use more than 45,000 plants ha-1. The grain yield and total biomass difference between farmers own practice and our on-farm research was 101% and 84% respectively

  13. Global Climate Change and Sedimentation Patterns in the Neogene Baringo Basin, Central Kenya Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deino, A. L.; Kingston, J. D.; Wilson, K. E.; Hill, A.

    2010-12-01

    The Tugen Hills are part of a ~100 km N-S tilted fault block, just west of Lake Baringo within the Central Kenyan Rift Valley. Sediments exposed in this block span the last 16 Ma and have yielded abundant and diverse fossil assemblages including a number of hominoid and hominid specimens. Much research has also focused on documenting the paleoecology of the succession through analyses of fossil floral, faunal, and biogeochemical proxies. Data from the Tugen Hills have revealed a complex evolutionary history of ecosystems characterized by spatial and temporal heterogeneity with no clear evidence of any long-term trends. While these studies suggest that the patterns of heterogeneity may be shifting at short time-scales (104-105 ka), limited temporal resolution has until now generally precluded assessments of environmental change at these scales. Recently published investigations in the Baringo Basin have provided evidence of orbitally mediated environmental change over periods which include hominid fossil localities (Deino et al., 2006; Kingston et al., 2007). The Baringo data represent the only empirical evidence for significant local environmental shifts that can directly be correlated with insolation patterns in equatorial Africa. Sedimentation patterns in the Baringo Basin between ca. 2.70 and 2.55 Ma, controlled by climatic factors, provide a detailed paleoenvironmental record including a sequence of diatomites that record rhythmic cycling of major freshwater lake systems consistent with ~23 kyr Milankovitch precessional periodicity modulated by eccentricity. The timing of the paleolakes most closely approximates insolation maximum for the June/July 30○N insolation curve, suggesting that precipitation patterns in the region are controlled by the African monsoon system. More recent fieldwork has identified older sequences that similarly demonstrate rhythmic cycling of freshwater lake systems. Preliminary 40Ar/39Ar dating of intercalated tephra reveals that

  14. The crust and upper mantle of central East Greenland - implications for continental accretion and rift evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schiffer, Christian; Balling, Niels; Ebbing, Jörg; Holm Jacobsen, Bo; Bom Nielsen, Søren

    2016-04-01

    The geological evolution of the North Atlantic Realm during the past 450 Myr, which has shaped the present-day topographic, crustal and upper mantle features, was dominated by the Caledonian orogeny and the formation of the North Atlantic and associated igneous activity. The distinct high altitude-low relief landscapes that accompany the North Atlantic rifted passive margins are the focus of a discussion of whether they are remnant and modified Caledonian features or, alternatively, recently uplifted peneplains. Teleseismic receiver function analysis of 11 broadband seismometers in the Central Fjord Region in East Greenland indicates the presence of a fossil subduction complex, including a slab of eclogitised mafic crust and an overlying wedge of hydrated mantle peridotite. This model is generally consistent with gravity and topography. It is shown that the entire structure including crustal thickness variations and sub-Moho heterogeneity gives a superior gravity and isostatic topographic fit compared to a model with a homogeneous lithospheric layer (1). The high topography of >1000 m in the western part of the area is supported by the c. 40 km thick crust. The eastern part requires buoyancy from the low velocity/low density mantle wedge. The geometry, velocities and densities are consistent with structures associated with a fossil subduction zone. The spatial relations with Caledonian structures suggest a Caledonian origin. The results indicate that topography is isostatically compensated by density variations within the lithosphere and that significant present-day dynamic topography seems not to be required. Further, this structure is suggested to be geophysically very similar to the Flannan reflector imaged north of Scotland, and that these are the remnants of the same fossil subduction zone, broken apart and separated during the formation of the North Atlantic in the early Cenozoic (2). 1) Schiffer, C., Jacobsen, B.H., Balling, N., Ebbing, J. and Nielsen, S

  15. The role of rift inheritance during Cenozoic mountain building of the central Pyrenees and geodynamic implications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Filleaudeau, P.-Y.; Mouthereau, F.; Lacombe, O.; Pik, R.; Fellin, M. G.

    2012-04-01

    Providing accurate estimates of shortening, as well as the duration and vertical amplitudes of tectonic events in collisional orogens is critical to better understanding the retroactions between the distribution of crustal deformation and surface processes during mountain building. However, structural and bedrock geochronological constraints are usually lacking accuracy for the early stages of convergence that are generally overprinted by complex deformation patterns and synorogenic burial. In this aim, we present new detrital low-temperature thermochronometry (detrital AFT dating, zircon (U-Th)/He ages) and geochronology (zircon U/Pb ages) on both flanks of the Pyrenean orogen. Combined with available in-situ thermochronometric constraints we examine the role of rift inheritance on the early stages of orogenesis. Together with foreland tectono-stratigraphic constraints and re-appraisal of the distribution of crustal deformation in the central Pyrenees, these new data offer the unique opportunity to precisely determine the kinematics on both sides of the Pyrenean mountain belt from Late Cretaceous to Miocene. Intermediate restorations are then produced for well-suited and key time intervals (Early Oligocene, Middle Eocene, Cretaceous-Paleogene transition, Late Campanian and Late Santonian) in order to examine the mass balance within the orogenic wedge. This study shows that during the initial stage of contraction (83-68 Ma) exhumation rates were accommodated by a limited amount of underthrusting. Acceleration of plate convergence in the Late Cretaceous, as inferred from plate reconstructions, is supported an exhumational event at ~65 Ma. At this time, the North Pyrenean flysch basins were inverted on top of an inherited S-dipping crustal detachment that previously exposed lithospheric mantle (Pyrenean Lherzolites) to the surface during the mid-Cretaceous extension phase . The amount of accreted material from the Iberian crust increased significantly after the

  16. Late pre-rift to early drift sedimentary history of Central Iran

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balini, Marco; Nicora, Alda; Angiolini, Lucia; Berra, Fabrizio; Henderson, Charles; Leven, Ernst; Vuolo, Irene; Borlenghi, Maria Letizia; Mandrioli, Riccardo; Bahrammanesh, Maryamnaz; Sohrabi, Zohreh

    2014-05-01

    In the last 3 years the late Paleozoic history of Central Iran has been investigated with the aim of restoring a critical phase in the geological evolution of this Cimmerian block, that is its late pre-rift and the following early drift sedimentary history. This project was developed as the ideal continuation of a former project on the Triassic collision history of Central Iran, carried out during the MEBE Programme and now under the DARIUS Programme. The approach for the new research was based on extensive samplings of selected stratigraphic sections distributed along a present day SW to NE transect, from the Sanandaj-Sirjan southeast of Shahreza (Asadabad), to Anarak, Kalmard (Rahdar), Bagh-e-Vang (Bagh-e-Vang and Shesh Angosht) and Ozbak-Kuh (Zaladou). The stratigraphic interval selected for study is comprised between the Carboniferous Sardar Formation to the Permian Jamal or Jamal-equivalent units. The main problem in the study of the units of the selected interval is their dating, often based on scattered data, and their simplified lithological descriptions available from literature. Then the sections selected for sampling were sampled on a bed-by-bed approach for several groups of fossils (conodonts, fusulinids and brachiopods) as well as for microfacies study of limestones and the petrographic study of conglomerates and breccias. The analyses of the huge amount of samples lead to improve the bio-chronostratigraphy and to much better characterize the main unconformities. The main achievements with respect to the major aims of the project can be summarized as follows: - During the late Early Carboniferous to earliest Late Carboniferous the area between Sanandaj-Sirjan and Ozbak-Kuh was characterized by marine sedimentation dominated by siltstones with episodes of shallow water carbonate sedimentation. The Kalmard unit is the unique exception within this uniform setting, as sedimentation in this area was dominated by shallow water carbonates. Evidence of

  17. Gravity study of the Central African Rift system: a model of continental disruption 2. The Darfur domal uplift and associated Cainozoic volcanism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bermingham, P. M.; Fairhead, J. D.; Stuart, G. W.

    1983-05-01

    Gravity studies of the Darfur uplift, Western Sudan, show it to be associated with a circular negative Bouguer anomaly, 50 mGal in amplitude and 700 km across. A three-dimensional model interpretation of the Darfur anomaly, using constraints deduced from geophysical studies of similar but more evolved Kenya and Ethiopia domes, suggests either a low-density laccolithic body at mid-lithospheric depth (~ 60 km) or a thinned lithosphere with emplacement at high level of low-density asthenospheric material. The regional setting of the Darfur uplift is described in terms of it being an integral part of the Central African Rift System which is shown to be broadly equivalent to the early to middle Miocene stage in the development of the Afro-Arabian Rift System. Comparisons between these rift systems suggest that extensional tectonics and passive rifting, resulting in the subsiding sedimentary rift basins associated with the Ngaoundere, Abu Gabra, Red Sea and Gulf of Aden rifts, are more typical of the early stage development of passive continental margins than the active domal uplift and development of rifted features associated with the Darfur, Kenya and Ethiopia domes.

  18. Fault kinematics and tectonic stress in the seismically active Manyara Dodoma Rift segment in Central Tanzania Implications for the East African Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Macheyeki, Athanas S.; Delvaux, Damien; De Batist, Marc; Mruma, Abdulkarim

    2008-07-01

    The Eastern Branch of the East African Rift System is well known in Ethiopia (Main Ethiopian Rift) and Kenya (Kenya or Gregory Rift) and is usually considered to fade away southwards in the North Tanzanian Divergence, where it splits into the Eyasi, Manyara and Pangani segments. Further towards the south, rift structures are more weakly expressed and this area has not attracted much attention since the mapping and exploratory works of the 1950s. In November 4, 2002, an earthquake of magnitude Mb = 5.5 struck Dodoma, the capital city of Tanzania. Analysis of modern digital relief, seismological and geological data reveals that ongoing tectonic deformation is presently affecting a broad N-S trending belt, extending southward from the North Tanzanian Divergence to the region of Dodoma, forming the proposed "Manyara-Dodoma Rift segment". North of Arusha-Ngorongoro line, the rift is confined to a narrow belt (Natron graben in Tanzania) and south of it, it broadens into a wide deformation zone which includes both the Eyasi and Manyara grabens. The two-stage rifting model proposed for Kenya and North Tanzania also applies to the Manyara-Dodoma Rift segment. In a first stage, large, well-expressed topographic and volcanogenic structures were initiated in the Natron, Eyasi and Manyara grabens during the Late Miocene to Pliocene. From the Middle Pleistocene onwards, deformations related to the second rifting stage propagated southwards to the Dodoma region. These young structures have still limited morphological expressions compared to the structures formed during the first stage. However, they appear to be tectonically active as shown by the high concentration of moderate earthquakes into earthquake swarms, the distribution of He-bearing thermal springs, the morphological freshness of the fault scarps, and the presence of open surface fractures. Fault kinematic and paleostress analysis of geological fault data in basement rocks along the active fault lines show that recent

  19. Quantitative restoration of 1 million years of crustal extension in the Gulf of Corinth rift, central Greece

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mann, P.; Dowla, N.

    2013-12-01

    The Gulf of Corinth (GOC) rifted zone of central Greece is accessible for both marine seismic data acquisition and onland field studies and has been the focus of many types of active rift research for the past 50 years. The purpose of this study is to: 1) compile all existing marine seismic reflection data from the GOC and geologic map data from adjacent onland rifts exposed south of the GOC; 2) create four digitized dip direction cross sections crossing the western (1) and central (3) GOC that included major faults and sedimentary sequences extracted from compiled onland and offshore data; 3) use 2D-MOVE software to restore these present-day cross sections to their undeformed state, adhering to line length and area balancing structural geology principles; 4) compare calculated extension amounts to previous structural studies that proposed extensional amounts using other methods. Previous work in the GOC region has led to controversies in the following topics which all impact how we construct present-day cross sections: 1) whether normal faults in the GOC sole onto a low-angle detachment or are thick-skinned faults extending deep into the crust; previous microearthquake surveys of seismogenic normal faults of the western GOC support the existence of a low-angle detachment whose fault dip and depth to detachment were used for our cross sections; 2) the listric versus planar shapes of normal faults; deep-penetration marine seismic data supports the presence of listric fault shapes with dips extending to depths of 10 km; and 3) the age of pre- and syn-rift sediments in the GOC and onland rifts to the south; we followed the age estimates of Taylor et al. (2011) for a two-stage rift history with Stage 1 from 1 Ma-700 ka and Stage 2 from 700 ka to present. Results from the four restored cross sections include: 1) the narrow, 1.35-km-wide marine strait of the western GOC exhibits the least amount of extension (1.8 km) with the oldest normal faults initiating south of GOC

  20. Teleseismic wave front anomalies at a Continental Rift: no mantle anomaly below the central Upper Rhine Graben

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kirschner, Stephanie; Ritter, Joachim; Wawerzinek, Britta

    2011-08-01

    The deep structure of the Upper Rhine Graben (URG), a continental rift in SW Germany and E France, is still poorly known. This deficit impedes a full understanding of the geodynamic evolution of this prominent rift. We study the lithosphere-asthenosphere structure using teleseismic waveforms obtained from the passive broad-band TIMO project across the central URG. The recovered, crust-corrected traveltime residuals relative to the iasp91 earth model are tiny (mostly less than 0.2-0.3 s). The average measured slowness (<1 s deg-1) and backazimuth (<5°) deviations are also very small and do not show any systematic wave front anomalies. These observed perturbation values are smaller than expected ones from synthetic 3-D ray tracing modelling with anomalies exceeding 2-3 per cent seismic velocity in the mantle. Thus there is no significant hint for any deep-seated anomaly such as a mantle cushion, etc. This result means that the rifting process did not leave behind a lower lithospheric signature, which could be clearly verified with high-resolution teleseismic experiments. The only significant traveltime perturbation at the central URG is located at its western side in the upper crust around a known geothermal anomaly. The upper crustal seismic anomaly with traveltime delays of 0.2-0.3 s cannot be explained with increased temperature alone. It is possibly related to a zone of highly altered granite. In the west of our network a traveltime anomaly (0.6-0.7 s delay) related with the Eifel plume is confirmed by the TIMO data set.

  1. Volcano deformation in central Main Ethiopian Rift system (Aluto Volcano) inferred from continuous GPS and dynamic gravity observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Birhanu, Yelebe; Biggs, Juliet; Gottsmann, Joachim; Lewi, Elias; Lloyd, Ryan; Bekele, Berhanu

    2016-04-01

    Silicic volcanic centres in the rift systems frequently experience unrest indicating long-term activity in the underlying magmatic system, but it is difficult to distinguish the contributions of hydrothermal fluids, magma or gasses. Aluto volcano which is located in the central MER system is situated between the Lakes Ziway and Langano in the north and south respectively. Continuous GPS installed from April 2013 to October 2015 shows subsidence initially, with the largest subsidence observed in the eastern part of the caldera (2 cm/yr). InSAR observations from TerraSAR-X show a radially-symmetric pattern of long-term subsidence. Dynamic gravity surveys carried out in October 2014 and 2015 showed that there is a net mass loss in the western and central part of the caldera and mass gain in the eastern and southern part of the caldera, with a sharp gradient between the two. This complex spatial pattern of gravity change is significantly different to the simple pattern of deformation indicating multiple sources of pressure and mass change exist within the caldera. We explain the ratio of gravity to height change (dg/dh) throughout the volcano by considering cooling and crystallisation of magma body, draining and precipitation of hydrothermal fluids and changes in the water table and lake levels. Keywords: volcano deformation, dynamic gravity, continental rift

  2. New perspectives on the evolution of narrow, modest extension continental rifts: Embryonic core complexes and localized, rapid Quaternary extension in the Rio Grande rift, central New Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ricketts, J.; Karlstrom, K. E.; Kelley, S.

    2013-12-01

    Updated models for continental rift zones need to address the role and development of low-angle normal fault networks, episodicity of extension, and interaction of 'active and passive' driving mechanisms. In the Rio Grande rift, USA, low-angle normal faults are found throughout the entire length of the rift, but make up a small percentage of the total fault population. The low-angle Jeter and Knife Edge faults, for example, crop out along the SW and NE margins of the Albuquerque basin, respectively. Apatite fission track (AFT) age-elevation data and apatite (U-Th)/He (AHe) ages from these rift flank uplifts record cooling between ~21 - 16 Ma in the NE rift flank and ~20 - 10 Ma in the SW, which coincides with times of rapid extension and voluminous syntectonic sedimentation. The timing of exhumation is also similar to rift flanks farther north in active margins based on AFT data alone. In addition, synthetic faults in the hanging wall of each low-angle fault become progressively steeper and younger basinward, and footwall blocks are the highest elevation along the rift flanks. These observations are consistent with a model where initially high-angle faults are shallowed in regions of maximum extension. As they rotate, new intrabasinal faults emerge which also can be rotated if extension continues. These relationships are similarly described in mature core complexes, and if these processes continued in the Rio Grande rift, it could eventually result in mid-crustal ductily deformed rocks in the footwall placed against surficial deposits in the hanging wall across faults that have been isostatically rotated to shallow dips. Although existing data are consistent with highest strain rates during a pulse of extension along the entire length of the rift 20-10 Ma., GPS-constrained measurements suggest that the rift is still actively-extending at 1.23-1.39 nstr/yr (Berglund et al., 2012). Additional evidence for Quaternary extension comes from travertine deposits that are

  3. Extensional salt tectonics in the partially inverted Cotiella post-rift basin (south-central Pyrenees): structure and evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    López-Mir, Berta; Muñoz, Josep Anton; García-Senz, Jesús

    2015-03-01

    The Cotiella Massif in the south-central Pyrenees hosts upper Cretaceous gravity-driven extensional faults which were developed in the Bay of Biscay-Pyrenean paleorift margin of the Atlantic Ocean. They accommodate up to 6 km of post-rift carbonates above relict upper Triassic salt. Subsequent Pyrenean contractional deformation preserved the main extensional features, but most of the upper Triassic salt was expulsed and then dissolved, leaving little indications of the original salt volume. Nonetheless, several distinctive salt-related features are still recognizable both at outcrop and at basin scale, providing an exposed analogue for salt-floored extensional basins developed on passive margins. Based on field research, we re-interpret the tectonic evolution of the area and suggest that passive diapirs were coeval with gravity-driven extension during the development of the Cotiella basin. The given interpretations are supported with detailed geological maps, original structural data, cross sections and outcrop photographs. The discovery of previously unknown post-rift salt structures in the Cotiella Massif is an extra element to consider in the paleogeographic reconstructions of the upper Cretaceous passive margin of the Bay of Biscay-Pyrenean realm and consequently helps in our understanding of the evolution of current Atlantic-type margins.

  4. P wave velocity of the uppermost mantle of the Rio Grande rift region of North Central New Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    Murdock, J.N.; Jaksha, L.H.

    1981-08-10

    A network of seismograph stations has operated in north-central New Mexico since 1975. The network is approximtely 200 by 300 km in size and encompasses the Rio Grande rift there. Several seismic refraction experiments have been reported in the literature for the region of the network and adjacent areas. Because all of the seismic refraction lines are unreversed, P/sub n/ velocities reported were mainly of the inverse travel time slope for the direction of the corresponding line. The values of the inverse slope for those studies range from 7.6 to 8.2 km/s. The purpose of our study is to estimate the P wave velocity of the uppermost mantle by using the time term method. First, we timed the P/sub n/ waves of strong signals from five explosions and eight shallow earthquakes recorded by the network. The main data set, which contains 87 time-distance pairs, was processed by using the time term method. The P/sub n/ velocity estimated by this method is 8.0 +- 0.1 km/s. To corroborate this estimate, we then processed 10 subsets of the main data set in the same way. Almost allof the solutions show velocities 7.9--8.1 km/s, in agreement with the velocity determined for the main data set. The station time terms of the main data set also are substantied, and they suggest that the base of the crust dips northward by a few degrees in the region of the survey. The smallest value reported by other investigators for the inverse slope (7.6 km/s) appears to be related to the dip. The normal P wave velocity of the uppermost mantle of north-central New Mexico places restrictions on thermal models of the rift. For instance, the results exlude the likelihood of a wide zone of asthenosphere at the base of the crust beneath the rift, but they do not exclude a narrow such zone.

  5. Identifying deformation styles and causes at two deforming volcanoes of the Central Main Ethiopian Rift with seismic anisotropy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nowacki, Andy; Wilks, Matthew; Kendall, J.-Michael; Biggs, Juliet; Ayele, Atalay; Tulu, Beshahe; James, Wookey

    2016-04-01

    The Main Ethiopian Rift (MER) has undergone extension since ˜8 Ma, and whilst large border faults were active until later stages, since then (2 Ma) seemingly most extension has been via the Wonji Fault Belt (WFB), a series of en-echelon faults perpendicular to current spreading, which possibly focus around magmatic centres. Two such centres are Corbetti and Aluto volcanoes in the central MER. They have shown significant (>5 cm) uplift and subsidence for at least five years, probably erupted in the Holocene, and are geothermal sites. They are presumed therefore to play an active rôle in present-day extension along the rift, via magma injection and brittle deformation; yet a detailed physical explanation of their behaviour remains elusive. We report results from a recent combined seismic-geodetic study (ARGOS) of these areas, focussing on the seismic anisotropy revealed. We confirm that both volcanoes are seismically active, with events located beneath the edifice having mean local magnitude mL = 1.0. Beneath Aluto, there are two main clusters of activity: (1) at depths 5-10 km below sea level (bsl), and (2) between ‑2 and 0 km bsl. Focal mechanisms show predominantly normal faulting on fault planes striking north-northeast (NNE), and event locations cluster along a similar trend. The identification of the WFB in this region is debated, but we show that only the deepest (5-15 km) events occur along the northeast-trending faults with outcropping to the east. Shear wave splitting of over 5 % is present, and appears to be confined to the top 5 km, since little depth dependence is shown. Fast shear wave orientations have again a NNE trend. These lines of evidence indicate that current seismic deformation, and aligned structures in the top few km, act in response to the current stress field, and not pre-existing features. Any magmatic emplacement occurring above 15 km is likely not as dykes, as these would create large seismic anisotropy at these depths which is not

  6. Seismic Imaging of a Continental Intraplate: Long-Term Persistence of Fossil Rifts and Hot Spots in the Central and Eastern United States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pollitz, F. F.; Mooney, W. D.

    2015-12-01

    Seismic surface waves from the Transportable Array of Earthscope's USArray are used to estimate phase velocity structure of 18 to 125s Rayleigh waves, then corrected for lateral crustal thickness variations (with CRUST1.0) and inverted to obtain three-dimensional crust and upper mantle structure of the Central and Eastern United States (CEUS) down to ~200 km. The obtained lithosphere structure confirms previously imaged features in the CEUS, e.g., the low seismic velocity signature of Proterozoic to Cambrian fossil rifts, the very low velocity at >150 km depth below an Eocene volcanic center in northwestern Virginia, and the very low velocity along a corridor stretching from eastern New York to New Hampshire. The model also reveals new features. The high-velocity Granite-Rhyolite Province sharply bounds the Grenville front at mid-lithosphere depth, suggesting that it acted as a backstop during the Grenville orogeny ca. 1.2 - 1.0 Ga. High-velocity mantle extending ˜ 200 km deep stretches from the Archean Superior Craton well into the Proterozoic terrains (Granite-Rhyolite, Mazatzal and Yavapai provinces). This is consistent with independent seismic velocity images and suggests that the thickness of Proterozoic lithosphere is generally ˜ 200 km. A deep low-velocity zone in central Texas is associated with the late Cretaceous Travis and Uvalde volcanic fields, and a similar deep low-velocity zone is located beneath the South Georgia Rift, which contains Jurassic basalts associated with the Central Atlantic magmatic province. Hotspot tracks may be associated with several of the low-velocity zones, and the central Texas, New York-New Hampshire, and southern Georgia zones may also be associated with the former rifted Laurentia margin. This suggests a systematic pattern whereby transient mantle thermal perturbations are accentuated near former failed rifts or rift margins.

  7. A Crustal Cross Section over the Central North Iberian Margin: New Insights into the Bay of Biscay Inverted Hyperextended Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cadenas Martínez, P.; Fernandez Viejo, G.; Pulgar, J. A.; Minshull, T. A.

    2015-12-01

    The Bay of Biscay is a V-shape failed arm of the Atlantic rift which was opened during the Mesozoic and partially closed during the Alpine orogeny in the Cenozoic, when the convergence of the Iberian and European Plates drove to the formation of the Pyrenean-Cantabrian realm in the North Iberian peninsula. A complete crustal cross section through the central part of the North Iberian Margin, representing the southern margin of the Bay of Biscay, is presented here from the interpretation of a high quality deep seismic reflection profile together with boreholes and well logs, acquired for oil and gas exploration purposes. The studied segment of this margin includes a basement high so called Le Danois Bank, and the Asturian basin, one of the sedimentary basins developed during the Mesozoic extensional processes, which was subsequently inverted during the Alpine orogeny. Most of the compression seems to have taken place through uplift of the continental platform and slope and the formation of an accretionary wedge at the bottom of the slope, so it is still possible to elucidate both extensional and compressional features. The basin appears as an asymmetric bowl bounded by synsedimentary normal faults with a maximum thickness of about 6 s TWT, which has been estimated to be equivalent to about 7 km. Depth migration of the seismic profile has revealed the presence of a deeper trough, with a maximum thickness of 13. 5 km at its main depocenter, which closely resembles the sedimentary thickness proposed for other contemporaneous proximal basins. These results support the high degree of extension and the exhumation processes proposed for this margin, deduced from refraction velocities and from the upper crustal and mantle rocks dredged at the slopes of Le Danois High. They will bring new insights to, and further constraints on, geodynamical models for this margin, where the amount of shortening linked with Cenozoic compression and the role of the rift structure during the

  8. Permeability alteration in small-displacement faults in poorly lithified sediments: Rio Grande Rift, Central New Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sigda, John M.; Goodwin, Laurel B.; Mozley, Peter S.; Wilson, John L.

    Faults in clastic rocks influence fluid flow by juxtaposition of different lithologic units and by localized alteration of petrophysical properties through cataclasis, cementation, or other deformational and diagenetic processes. Extensional tectonic settings, such as the Basin and Range Province and the Rio Grande rift, are characterized by numerous faults in both sedimentary rocks and poorly lithified basin-fill sediments. Faults in poorly lithified sediments have received little attention; our study is the first to examine their permeability. We tested whether faulting of poorly lithified sediments significantly affects permeability by comparing two uncemented, small-displacement, normal faults in New Mexico's central Rio Grande rift: one with a clay-rich core (displacement > bed thickness) and one without a clay-rich core (displacement < bed thickness). Using in situ permeametry and thin section analysis, permeability, porosity, and clay size fraction were mapped across undeformed and faulted sediments. Both fault zones display permeability values two to three orders of magnitude lower than those for undeformed sand. Clay size fraction increased four to five-fold over undeformed sand, even in the fault without a clay-rich core, and is inversely correlated with permeability. Our results indicate that small-displacement faults are much less permeable than their poorly lithified parent sediments and that permeability reduction is associated with an increase in clay size fraction, but does not depend solely on formation of a clay-rich core. Under saturated conditions these faults impede fluid flow, but may act as preferential flow paths through thick, dry vadose zones common in the arid Southwest. Numerous in extensional basins but typically not included on most geologic maps, such faults could significantly influence flow through basin-fill sediments.

  9. The 1.1-Ga Midcontinent Rift System, central North America: sedimentology of two deep boreholes, Lake Superior region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ojakangas, Richard W.; Dickas, Albert B.

    2002-03-01

    The Midcontinent Rift System (MRS) of central North America is a 1.1-Ga, 2500-km long structural feature that has been interpreted as a triple-junction rift developed over a mantle plume. As much as 20 km of subaerial lava flows, mainly flood basalts, are overlain by as much as 10 km of sedimentary rocks that are mostly continental fluvial red beds. This rock sequence, known as the Keweenawan Supergroup, has been penetrated by a few deep boreholes in the search for petroleum. In this paper, two deep boreholes in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan are described in detail for the first time. Both the Amoco Production #1-29R test, herein referred to as the St. Amour well, and the nearby Hickey Creek well drilled by Cleveland Cliffs Mining Services, were 100% cored. The former is 7238 ft (2410 m) deep and the latter is 5345 ft (1780 m) deep. The entirety of the stratigraphic succession of the Hickey Creek core correlates very well with the upper portion of the St. Amour core, as determined by core description and point-counting of 43 thin sections selected out of 100 studied thin sections. Two Lower Paleozoic units and two Keweenawan red bed units—the Jacobsville Sandstone and the underlying Freda Sandstone—are described. The Jacobsville is largely a feldspatholithic sandstone and the Freda is largely a lithofeldspathic sandstone. Below the Freda, the remaining footage of the St. Amour core consists of a thick quartzose sandstone unit that overlies a heterogenous unit of intercalated red bed units of conglomerate, sandstone, siltstone, and shale; black shale; individual basalt flows; and a basal ignimbritic rhyolite. This lower portion of the St. Amour core presents an enigma, as it correlates very poorly with other key boreholes located to the west and southwest. While a black shale sequence is similar to the petroleum-bearing Nonesuch Formation farther west, there is no conglomerate unit to correlate with the Copper Harbor Conglomerate. Other key boreholes are

  10. Post-caldera faulting of the Late Quaternary Menengai caldera, Central Kenya Rift (0.20°S, 36.07°E)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riedl, Simon; Melnick, Daniel; Mibei, Geoffrey K.; Njue, Lucy; Strecker, Manfred R.

    2015-04-01

    A structural geological analysis of young caldera volcanoes is necessary to characterize their volcanic activity, assess their geothermal potential, and decipher the spatio-temporal relationships of faults on a larger tectonic scale. Menengai caldera is one of several major Quaternary trachytic caldera volcanoes that are aligned along the volcano-tectonic axis of the Kenya Rift, the archetypal active magmatic rift and nascent plate boundary between the Nubia and Somalia plates. The caldera covers an area of approximately 80 km² and is among the youngest and also largest calderas in the East African Rift, situated close to Nakuru - a densely populated urban area. There is an increasing interest in caldera volcanoes in the Kenya Rift, because these are sites of relatively young volcanic and tectonic activity, and they are considered important sites for geothermal exploration and future use for the generation of geothermal power. Previous studies of Menengai showed that the caldera collapsed in a multi-event, multiple-block style, possibly as early as 29 ka. In an attempt to characterize the youngest tectonic activity along the volcano-tectonic axis in the transition between the Central and Northern Kenya rifts we first used a high-resolution digital surface model, which we derived by structure-from-motion from an unmanned aerial vehicle campaign. This enabled us to identify previously unrecognized normal faults, associated dyke intrusions and volcanic eruptive centers, and transfer faults with strike-slip kinematics in the caldera interior and its vicinity. In a second step we verified these structures at outcrop scale, assessed their relationship with known stratigraphic horizons and dated units, and performed detailed fault measurements, which we subsequently used for fault-kinematic analysis. The most important structures that we mapped are a series of north-northeast striking normal faults, which cross-cut both the caldera walls and early Holocene lake

  11. Incipient Crustal Stretching across AN Active Collision Belt: the Case of the Siculo-Calabrian Rift Zone (central Mediterranean)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Catalano, S.; Tortorici, G.; Romagnoli, G.; Pavano, F.

    2012-12-01

    In the Central Mediterranean, the differential roll-back of the subducting Nubia Plate caused the Neogene-Quaternary extrusion of the Calabrian arc onto the oceanic Ionian slab, and the opening of the oceanic Tyrrhenian Basin, in the overriding Eurasia Plate. The differential motion at the edges of the arc was largely accommodated along transform faults that propagated across the orogenic belt. Since the Late Quaternary, the southern edge of the arc has been replaced by the roughly N-S oriented Siculo-Calabrian Rift Zone (SCRZ) that formed as the NNW-directed normal faults of NE Sicily, crossing the orogenic belt, have linked the NNE-oriented Tyrrhenian margin of southern Calabria with the NNW-trending Africa-Ionian boundary of southeastern Sicily. Our study focused on the Sicily shoulder of the SCRZ, where the transition zone between the extensional belt and the still active Nubia-Eurasia convergent margin is characterized by two distinct mobile crustal wedges, both lying on an upwarped Mantle, where a re-orientations of the σ1 is combined with volcanism (e.g. Etna, Aeolian islands) and a huge tectonic uplift. In southeastern Sicily, the Hyblean-Etnean region evolved, since about 0.85 Ma, as an indipendent crustal wedge, moving towards the NNW and pointing to the active Mt. Etna volcano. A local ENE crustal stretching accompanied the traslation of the block and pre-dated the ESE-oriented extension governing the propagation of the southernmost branch of the SCR, which started at about 330 ka B.P.. Similarly, the Peloritani-Aeolian region, flanked by the 125 ka-old NE-Sicily branch of the rift zone, represents a mostly submerged crustal wedge that migrates towards the NE, diverging from the rest of the Sicily collision zone and pointing to the Stromboli volcano. The Peloritani-Aeolian block is characterized by the occurrence of a wide central NE-oriented collapsed basin contoured by an actively uplifting region, whose tectonic boundaries are evidenced by a sharp

  12. SHRIMP U-Pb dating of recurrent Cryogenian and Late Cambrian-Early Ordovician alkalic magmatism in central Idaho: Implications for Rodinian rift tectonics

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lund, K.; Aleinikoff, J.N.; Evans, K.V.; duBray, E.A.; deWitt, E.H.; Unruh, D.M.

    2010-01-01

    Composite alkalic plutonic suites and tuffaceous diamictite, although discontinuously exposed across central Idaho in roof pendants and inliers within the Idaho batholith and Challis volcanic-plutonic complex, define the >200-km-long northwest-aligned Big Creek-Beaverhead belt. Sensitive highresolution ion microprobe (SHRIMP) U-Pb zircon dates on these igneous rocks provide direct evidence for the orientation and location of the Neoproterozoic-Paleozoic western Laurentian rift margin in the northern U.S. Cordillera. Dating delimits two discrete magmatic pulses at ca. 665-650 Ma and 500-485 Ma at the western and eastern ends, respectively, of this belt. Together with the nearby 685 Ma volcanic rocks of the Edwardsburg Formation, there is a 200 Ma history of recurrent extensional magmatic pulses along the belt. A similar history of recurrent uplift is reflected in the stratigraphic record of the associated miogeoclinal and cratonal platform basins, suggesting that the Big Creek-Beaverhead belt originated as a border fault during continental rift events. The magmatic belt is paired with the recurrently emergent Lemhi Arch and narrow miogeoclinal facies belts and it lies inboard of a northwest-striking narrow zone of thinned continental crust. These features define a northeast-extending upper-plate extensional system between southeast Washington and southeast Idaho that formed a segment of the Neoproterozoic-Paleozoic miogeocline. This segment was flanked on the north by the St. Mary-Moyie transform zone (south of a narrow southern Canadian upper-plate margin) and on the south by the Snake River transfer zone (north of a broad Great Basin lower-plate margin). These are the central segments of a zigzagshaped Cordilleran rift system of alternating northwest-striking extensional zones offset by northeast-striking transfers and transforms. The data substantiate polyphase rift and continental separation events that included (1) pre-and syn-Windermere rifting, (2) Windermere

  13. Origin and Role of Recycled Crust in Flood Basalt Magmatism: Case Study of the Central East Greenland Rifted Margin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brown, E.; Lesher, C. E.

    2015-12-01

    Continental flood basalts (CFB) are extreme manifestations of mantle melting derived from chemically/isotopically heterogeneous mantle. Much of this heterogeneity comes from lithospheric material recycled into the convecting mantle by a range of mechanisms (e.g. subduction, delamination). The abundance and petrogenetic origins of these lithologies thus provide important constraints on the geodynamical origins of CFB magmatism, and the timescales of lithospheric recycling in the mantle. Basalt geochemistry has long been used to constrain the compositions and mean ages of recycled lithologies in the mantle. Typically, this work assumes the isotopic compositions of the basalts are the same as their mantle source(s). However, because basalts are mixtures of melts derived from different sources (having different fusibilities) generated over ranges of P and T, their isotopic compositions only indirectly represent the isotopic compositions of their mantle sources[1]. Thus, relating basalts compositions to mantle source compositions requires information about the melting process itself. To investigate the nature of lithologic source heterogeneity while accounting for the effects of melting during CFB magmatism, we utilize the REEBOX PRO forward melting model[2], which simulates adiabatic decompression melting in lithologically heterogeneous mantle. We apply the model to constrain the origins and abundance of mantle heterogeneity associated with Paleogene flood basalts erupted during the rift-to-drift transition of Pangea breakup along the Central East Greenland rifted margin of the North Atlantic igneous province. We show that these basalts were derived by melting of a hot, lithologically heterogeneous source containing depleted, subduction-modified lithospheric mantle, and <10% recycled oceanic crust. The Paleozoic mean age we calculate for this recycled crust is consistent with an origin in the region's prior subduction history, and with estimates for the mean age of

  14. SHRIMP U-Pb geochronology of Neoproterozoic Windermere Supergroup, central Idaho: Implications for rifting of western Laurentia and synchroneity of Sturtian glacial deposits

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lund, K.; Aleinikoff, J.N.; Evans, K.V.; Fanning, C.M.

    2003-01-01

    In central Idaho roof pendants, a northwest-trending belt of metamorphosed strata, correlative with the Windermere Supergroup, links northern and southern segments of the western Laurentia Neoproterozoic rift belt. Nine newly named formations within the Gospel Peaks sequence-A through Gospel Peaks sequence-D record Cryogenian preglacial, rift-glacial, and postglacial events as well as Neoproterozoic III glacial and rift events. The Edwardsburg Formation of Gospel Peaks sequence B includes interfingered bimodal rift-related volcanic and glaciogenic diamictite strata. Zircons from a rhyodacite flow in the lower Edwardsburg Formation and from a rhyolite flow at its top, dated by using the sensitive high-resolution ion microprobe (SHRIMP), yielded a weighted average of 685 ?? 7 Ma and 684 ?? 4 Ma. Reevaluation of geochronology and correlations indicates that Cryogenian rifting may have been (1) protracted between 780 and 685 Ma, (2) diachronous along the Cordillera, and/or (3) stepwise with a Cordilleran-wide event at ca. 685 Ma that initiated the formation of the Cordilleran miogeocline and set its geometry. Reevaluation of the Cryogenian glacial record indicates that (1) two associated ca. 685 Ma glacial intervals in the Edwardsburg Formation correlate with the Rapitan glaciation, (2) the Sturtian snowball Earth event must be reevaluated on the basis of revision of Rapitan glaciation from 750-700 Ma to ca. 685 Ma, and (3) there were older Cryogenian glaciations or Cryogenian glaciations were not globally synchronous. New dates and correlations significantly impact the number and synchroneity of possible snowball Earth events and the paleolatitudes of Cryogenian glaciations. Western Laurentian events at ca. 685 Ma particularily affect Neoproterozoic paleocontinental reconstructions by indicating diachronous and multi step breakup of supercontinent Rodinia.

  15. A Quantitative Analysis of Rift Processes in the Northern North Sea and Central Greece.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bryon, J. G.; White, N. J.

    2003-12-01

    Actively extending sedimentary basins provide a snapshot of the way in which basins evolve. Our observations from such regions are temporally limited: we have little understanding of the long-term processes involved but an excellent understanding of the short-term motions (100-102 years). The converse is true of tectonically dead basins where the deformation has ceased and only the end product can be observed. Studies of active basin formation in central Greece have provided a quantitative understanding of the kinematics of extensional tectonics. The use of GPS, SAR interferometry and geomorphological analysis has constrained the rate of extension and fault kinematics and geometries. Central Greece has often been cited as a present-day analogue for formation of the now inactive East Shetland Basin (ESB) in the northern North Sea. A large 3D seismic dataset has been compiled giving complete coverage of the ESB, a region comparable in size to central Greece ( ˜10,000 km2). A quantitative comparison between Greece and the ESB will close the gap in knowledge between short-term and long-term motions. Whilst the two regions have many features in common, such as tilted fault blocks, fault segments of comparable length and similar fault geometries, there are also important differences. For example, one difference between Greece and the northern North Sea is the rate of extension. The North Sea had a peak strain rate that was an order of magnitude slower than the rate at which Greece is currently extending across the gulfs of Corinth and Evia. Another difference is that the distance between large active faults in Greece appears to be significantly longer than in the ESB. A specific example of this difference in scale is the Tern-Eider ridge, which is a horst block in the ESB that appears superficially similar to the island of Evia in Greece. However, the rigid island of Evia is significantly wider than the Tern-Eider ridge. A link between this inter-fault distance and

  16. Chemistry and chronology of magmatic processes, Central Kenya Peralkaline province, East African Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anthony, E.; Deino, A. L.; White, J. C.; Omenda, P. A.

    2014-12-01

    We report here a synthesis of the geochemistry of magma evolution correlated with 40Ar/39Ar, 14 C, and U-series chronology for volcanoes in the Central Kenya Peralkaline Province (CKPP). The volcanic centers - Menengai, Eburru, Olkaria, Longonot, and Suswa - are at the apex of the Kenya Dome, and consist of trachyte, phonolite, comendite, and pantellerite. These volcanic centers are within the graben of the EARS and are characterized by a shield-building phase followed by caldera collapse and subsequent post-caldera eruptions. Geochemical modeling demonstrates that the magmas are the result of fractional crystallization of alkali basaltic magmas and magma mixing. Longonot and Suswa have the most chronologic data -14 C, Ar/Ar and U-series - and they show that the youngest eruptions have 230 Th/232Th of 0.8, which was inherited from the magma system prior to eruption. Subsequent changes in 230 Th/232 Th are due to post-eruptive decay of 230 Th and correlate well with 14 C and Ar/Ar.

  17. U-Pb ages of metarhyolites of the Catoctin and Mount Rogers formations, central and southern Appalachians: evidence for two pulses of Iapetan rifting

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Aleinikoff, J.N.; Zartman, R.E.; Walter, M.; Rankin, D.W.; Lyttle, P.T.; Burton, W.C.

    1995-01-01

    U-Pb ages of zircon from rhyolites of the Catoctin and Mount Rogers Formations demonstrate that rifting of the Laurentian continent to form the Iapetus Ocean was a prolonged event spanning 200 m.y. involving two important pulses of extrusive igneous activity. Rhyolitic flows of the non-fossiliferous Catoctin and Mount Rogers Formations, long correlated with one another on the basis of similar stratigraphic constraints, are dated at 564 ?? 9 Ma and 758 ?? 12 Ma, respectively. The data suggest a history of rifting in the central and southern Appalachians spanning 200 m.y. near the end of the Late Proterozoic. The earliest pulses did not proceed to continental separation and are not recorded north of the Potomac River. The later pulse or pulses affected the area from Newfoundland (ages of 617-590 Ma) to North Carolina and resulted in the opening of the Iapetus Ocean. -from Authors

  18. Superimposed positive and negative inversion of the syn-rift fault network preserved in the Montagna dei Fiori Anticline, Central Apennines, Italy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Storti, Fabrizio; Balsamo, Fabrizio; Koopman, Anton; Mozafari, Mahtab; Solum, John; Swennen, Rudy; Taberner, Conxita

    2016-04-01

    Syn-rift tectono-sedimentary inheritance is common in thrust-related anticlines exposed in most foreland thrust-fold belts worldwide. Inherited extensional faults provide mechanical weakness zones that typically undergo positive inversion during contraction. This unavoidably has an impact on the evolution of contractional folds. Moreover, duplexing and imbrication of thrust sheets typically produce gravitational instability of inherited fault patterns and negative inversion can be triggered in the late stages of fault-fold interaction. Such polyphase evolutionary histories can deeply influence deformation and fluid flow patterns in fault-related folds and therefore can strongly influence the distribution of structurally controlled processes such as dolomitization. In this contribution we present the results obtained from a multidisciplinary study of the tectono-sedimentary pattern and paleofluid history in carbonates exposed in the Montagna dei Fiori Anticline, at the mountain front of the Central Apennines (central Italy), where the occurrence of both syn-rift fault zones and related sediments has been previously described. Detailed mapping of the central part of the anticline, bed-perpendicular logging of syn-rift and post-rift strata, structural, petrographical, geochemical, microthermometrical, and petrophysical analyses were used to reconstruct the evolution of this anticline, starting from the pre-orogenic architecture up to its subsequent orogenic reworking. These data reveal: (1) the pre-orogenic tectono-sedimentary architecture of a folded Jurassic fault network; (2) multiple superimposition of extensional and contractional episodes of deformation on the same fault zones; (3) the presence of at least one main dolomitization episode, the timing of which is still being deciphered; (4) demonstrate the causal link between faulting and dolomitization, which favoured formation of dolostones along fault zones, particularly in the intersection/abutting areas

  19. A basaltic-ferrobasaltic granulite association, Oonagalabi gneiss complex, Central Australia: magmatic variation in an Early Proterozoic rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sivell, Warwick J.

    1986-07-01

    Extremely fractionated basaltic to ferrobasaltic amphibolites and granulites comprise two spatially associated mafic tholeiitic suites (?deformed sills) within the Early Proterozoic Oonagalabi basement gneiss complex, Harts Range, Central Australia. The metatholeiites are characterised by high to very high FeO, TiO2 and P2O5 contents, and variable depletion in CaO and Al2O3. Despite similar Zr/Nb ratios, the rocks from the two suites show different degrees of enrichment in LREE and other “immobile” incompatible elements. The basaltic melts which were parental to the two mafic suites were not comagmatic and the rocks cannot be related simply by fractionation of realistic assemblages of low-pressure fractionating phases. The data suggest that primary basaltic liquids for the two suites were derived by different degrees of partial melting from essentially similar undepleted mantle source regions. Clinopyroxene in the residual mantle assemblage controlled the composition of the segregating melt at lower degrees of melting. The ferrobasaltic compositions imply long residence times for the basaltic magmas in shallow-level differentiating tholeiitic sills and/or magma chambers in a mature propagating rift environment. High-grade (granulite facies) metamorphism, and subsequent restricted metasomatic reequilibration of the mafic rocks with interlayered migmatitic and quartzofeldspathic gneisses, have affected only abundances of certain highly-smobile elements (e.g. K2O and Rb), resulting in the partial disruption of inter-element correlations. However, the geochemical data do not indicate any large-scale depletion of large ion lithophile elements (LILE) in the Oonagalabi gneiss complex.

  20. The Lower Triassic Sorkh Shale Formation of the Tabas Block, east central Iran: Succesion of a failed-rift basin at the Paleotethys margin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lasemi, Y.; Ghomashi, M.; Amin-Rasouli, H.; Kheradmand, A.

    2008-01-01

    The Lower Triassic Sorkh Shale Formation is a dominantly red colored marginal marine succession deposited in the north-south trending Tabas Basin of east central Iran. It is correlated with the unconformity-bounded lower limestone member of the Elika Formation of the Alborz Mountains of northern Iran. The Sorkh Shale is bounded by the pre-Triassic and post-Lower Triassic interregional unconformities and consists mainly of carbonates, sandstones, and evaporites with shale being a minor constituent. Detailed facies analysis of the Sorkh Shale Formation resulted in recognition of several genetically linked peritidal facies that are grouped into restricted subtidal, carbonate tidal flat, siliciclastic tidal flat, coastal plain and continental evaporite facies associations. These were deposited in a low energy, storm-dominated inner-ramp setting with a very gentle slope that fringed the Tabas Block of east central Iran and passed northward (present-day coordinates) into deeper water facies of the Paleotethys passive margin of northern Cimmerian Continent. Numerous carbonate storm beds containing well-rounded intraclasts, ooids and bioclasts of mixed fauna are present in the Sorkh Shale Formation of the northern Tabas Basin. The constituents of the storm beds are absent in the fair weather peritidal facies of the Sorkh Shale Formation, but are present throughout the lower limestone member of the Elika Formation. The Tabas Block, a part of the Cimmerian continent in east central Iran, is a rift basin that developed during Early Ordovician-Silurian Paleotethys rifting. Facies and sequence stratigraphic analyses of the Sorkh Shale Formation has revealed additional evidence supporting the Tabas Block as a failed rift basin related to the Paleotethys passive margin. Absence of constituents of the storm beds in the fair weather peritidal facies of the Sorkh Shale Formation, presence of the constituents of the storm beds in the fair weather facies of the Elika Formation (the

  1. Adapting to climate variability and change: experiences from cereal-based farming in the central rift and Kobo Valleys, Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Kassie, Belay Tseganeh; Hengsdijk, Huib; Rötter, Reimund; Kahiluoto, Helena; Asseng, Senthold; Van Ittersum, Martin

    2013-11-01

    Small-holder farmers in Ethiopia are facing several climate related hazards, in particular highly variable rainfall with severe droughts which can have devastating effects on their livelihoods. Projected changes in climate are expected to aggravate the existing challenges. This study examines farmer perceptions on current climate variability and long-term changes, current adaptive strategies, and potential barriers for successful further adaptation in two case study regions-the Central Rift Valley (CRV) and Kobo Valley. The study was based on a household questionnaire, interviews with key stakeholders, and focus group discussions. The result revealed that about 99 % of the respondents at the CRV and 96 % at the Kobo Valley perceived an increase in temperature and 94 % at CRV and 91 % at the Kobo Valley perceived a decrease in rainfall over the last 20-30 years. Inter-annual and intraseasonal rainfall variability also has increased according to the farmers. The observed climate data (1977-2009) also showed an increasing trend in temperature and high inter-annual and intra-seasonal rainfall variability. In contrast to farmers' perceptions of a decrease in rainfall totals, observed rainfall data showed no statistically significant decline. The interaction among various bio-physical and socio-economic factors, changes in rainfall intensity and reduced water available to crops due to increased hot spells, may have influenced the perception of farmers with respect to rainfall trends. In recent decades, farmers in both the CRV and Kobo have changed farming practices to adapt to perceived climate change and variability, for example, through crop and variety choice, adjustment of cropping calendar, and in situ moisture conservation. These relatively low-cost changes in farm practices were within the limited adaptation capacity of farmers, which may be insufficient to deal with the impacts of future climate change. Anticipated climate change is expected to impose new

  2. Adapting to Climate Variability and Change: Experiences from Cereal-Based Farming in the Central Rift and Kobo Valleys, Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kassie, Belay Tseganeh; Hengsdijk, Huib; Rötter, Reimund; Kahiluoto, Helena; Asseng, Senthold; Van Ittersum, Martin

    2013-11-01

    Small-holder farmers in Ethiopia are facing several climate related hazards, in particular highly variable rainfall with severe droughts which can have devastating effects on their livelihoods. Projected changes in climate are expected to aggravate the existing challenges. This study examines farmer perceptions on current climate variability and long-term changes, current adaptive strategies, and potential barriers for successful further adaptation in two case study regions—the Central Rift Valley (CRV) and Kobo Valley. The study was based on a household questionnaire, interviews with key stakeholders, and focus group discussions. The result revealed that about 99 % of the respondents at the CRV and 96 % at the Kobo Valley perceived an increase in temperature and 94 % at CRV and 91 % at the Kobo Valley perceived a decrease in rainfall over the last 20-30 years. Inter-annual and intraseasonal rainfall variability also has increased according to the farmers. The observed climate data (1977-2009) also showed an increasing trend in temperature and high inter-annual and intra-seasonal rainfall variability. In contrast to farmers’ perceptions of a decrease in rainfall totals, observed rainfall data showed no statistically significant decline. The interaction among various bio-physical and socio-economic factors, changes in rainfall intensity and reduced water available to crops due to increased hot spells, may have influenced the perception of farmers with respect to rainfall trends. In recent decades, farmers in both the CRV and Kobo have changed farming practices to adapt to perceived climate change and variability, for example, through crop and variety choice, adjustment of cropping calendar, and in situ moisture conservation. These relatively low-cost changes in farm practices were within the limited adaptation capacity of farmers, which may be insufficient to deal with the impacts of future climate change. Anticipated climate change is expected to impose new

  3. Seismically imaging the structural legacy of rifting and collision events in the central and eastern U.S. crust

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmandt, B.; Lin, F. C.; Karlstrom, K. E.

    2015-12-01

    EarthScope's USArray now provides broadband seismic data across the contiguous U.S. and southeastern Canada. We used teleseismic receiver functions and surface wave tomography to map crustal structure beneath the entire array. Crust thickness was estimated with multi-mode Ps receiver function images using <0.5 Hz Ps and <0.25 Hz 2p1s and 2s1p reverberations between the free-surface and Moho. In areas of sedimentary basins or large impedance contrasts in the middle crust the reverberations alone often provide clearer images of the Moho than the Ps mode, because of interference from conversions at shallow interfaces is reduced at greater lag times. The new results enable large-scale comparison of the structural legacy of multiple rifting and collision events in eastern North America. Some Proterozoic rift segments defined by Bouguer gravity and surface geology maintain locally thin crust while others lack correlated Moho topography or are areas of locally thicker crust. Locally thin crust is found at southern end of the mid-continent rift (MCR) in northern Kansas and southern Nebraska, along the Reelfoot rift, and beneath inferred rifts in Michigan, Indiana, and Ohio. The Oklahoma aulacogen is not associated with a coherent change in crust thickness along its length, at least at a scale resolvable by USArray data and our imaging approach. The MCR extending northeast from Nebraska to Lake Superior has locally thicker crust, consistent with other recent results. We suggest that magmatic additions to the lower crust overwhelmed extension in the northern mid-continent rift, but not the rift segments further south and east. Collision events of the Grenville orogeny and Paleozoic orogens that created the Appalachian Mountains are still associated with ~45-55 km thick crust extending from the Grenville front eastward across the Appalachian Mountains to the fall line that marks the abrupt geomorphic transition to the coastal plains. Despite the ~45-55 km crust thickness long

  4. Hawaii Rifts

    SciTech Connect

    Nicole Lautze

    2015-01-01

    Rifts mapped through reviewing the location of dikes and vents on the USGS 2007 Geologic Map of the State of Hawaii, as well as our assessment of topography, and, to a small extent, gravity data. Data is in shapefile format.

  5. Post-rift vertical movements and horizontal deformations in the eastern margin of the Central Atlantic: Middle Jurassic to Early Cretaceous evolution of Morocco

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bertotti, Giovanni; Gouiza, Mohamed

    2012-11-01

    Wide regions of Morocco, from the Meseta to the High Atlas, have experienced km-scale upward vertical movements during Middle Jurassic to Early Cretaceous times following the appearance of oceanic crust in the Central Atlantic. The area experiencing exhumation was flanked to the W by a domain of continuous subsidence, part of which is named the Essaouira-Agadir basin. Comparison with vertical movement curves predicted by lithospheric thinning models shows that only 50-60 % of the subsidence documented in the Essaouira basin can be explained by post-rift thermal relaxation and that <30-40 % of the observed exhumation can be explained by processes (in)directly related to the evolution of the Central Atlantic rifted margin. Syn-sedimentary structures in Middle Jurassic to Lower Cretaceous formations of the Eassouira-Agadir basin are common and range from m-scale folds and thrusts to km-scale sedimentary wedges. These structures systematically document coeval shortening generally oriented at high angle to the present margin. As a working hypothesis, it is suggested that regional shortening can explain the structural observations and the enigmatic vertical movements.

  6. Late Proterozoic diabase dikes of the New Jersey Highlands; a remnant of Iapetan rifting in the north-central Appalachians

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Volkert, R.A.; Puffer, J.H.

    1995-01-01

    Diabase dikes of widespread occurrence intrude only middle Proterozoic rocks in the New Jersey Highlands. These dikes are enriched in TiO2, P2O5, Zr, and light rare earth elements, and have compositions that range from tholeiitic to alkalic. Dike descriptions, field relations, petrography, geochemistry, petrogenesis, and tectonic setting are discussed. The data are consistent with emplacement in a rift-related, within-plate environment and suggest a correlation with other occurrences of late Proterozoic Appalachian basaltic magmatism.

  7. Rift propagation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Parmentier, E. M.; Schubert, G.

    1989-01-01

    A model for rift propagation which treats the rift as a crack in an elastic plate which is filled from beneath by upwelling viscous asthenosphere as it lengthens and opens. Growth of the crack is driven by either remotely applied forces or the pressure of buoyant asthenosphere in the crack and is resisted by viscous stresses associated with filling the crack. The model predicts a time for a rift to form which depends primarily on the driving stress and asthenosphere viscosity. For a driving stress on the order of 10 MPa, as expected from the topography of rifted swells, the development of rifts over times of a few Myr requires an asthenosphere viscosity of 10 to the 16th Pa s (10 to the 17th poise). This viscosity, which is several orders of magnitude less than values determined by postglacial rebound and at least one order of magnitude less than that inferred for spreading center propagation, may reflect a high temperature or large amount of partial melting in the mantle beneath a rifted swell.

  8. Tectonics and stratigraphic development of a rifted continental margin: An example from the Eocene-middle Miocene, Taishi Basin, central Taiwan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Yan-Ching; Lin, Andrew. T.

    2015-04-01

    The rifting and forming age of South China Sea crust is about 58~37 Ma, and the shallow marine sequences of South China Sea were uplifted and exposed in Taiwan mountain belt. While most strata of Backbone Range and Hsueshan Range are metamorphosed, Western Foothills are the remaining strata. As to central Taiwan, those sequences are the critical place to explore the Cenozoic history of South China Sea rifting, since the stratigraphy record includes syn-rift to post-breakup strata. This study synthesizes field survey and borehole data to draft the tectonic and geological background of northern margin of the South China Sea, and thereby establish an evolutionary model of the target basin, Taishi Basin, from late Eocene to middle Miocene. Itemized stratigraphy strata examined from field can be nicely correlated to those of wells, and the result can be used to outline Taishi Basin. The trend shows the succession thickening toward the west and north. Most of well data shows pyroclastic deposits at bottom, succession covered on top are all sedimentary deposits. The lithology transfers from mud-dominated to sand-occupied for three times, which indicates converting of sequence. Twenty onshore and offshore exploration wells in the western Taiwan were incorporated. We identify eight types of electro-facies, which can be concluded into depositional environments. The vertical change of paleo-environments indicates different types of parasequences. By stacking individual parasequence, twelve sequences were recognized. In Western Foothills, central Taiwan, strata of more than one kilometer thickness was examined by this study, twenty-four lithofacies were discriminated, including five mudstones, three Sand-Mud laminations, seven sandstones, one conglomerate and seven types of pyroclastic deposits. Depositional environments were delivered, including (1) wave-dominated and tidal-influenced coasts, (2) wave-dominated estuary, (3) offshore continental shelf and (4) volcano apron

  9. The occurrence of a complete continental rift type of volcanic rocks suite along the Yerer-Tullu Wellel Volcano Tectonic Lineament, Central Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abebe Adhana, Tsegaye

    2014-11-01

    The Yerer-Tullu Wellel Volcano-tectonic Lineament (YTVL) is an E-W trending fault system or aborted rift that intercepts the Main Ethiopian Rift (MER) at Debre Zeyt (Bishoftu)/Yerer, in the eastern periphery of Addis Ababa. The structure is in correspondence with the westward extension of the southern margin of the Gulf of Aden rift. The YTVL extends for more than 500 km with a very clear northern fault margin, between Addis Ababa and Ambo known as the “Ambo Fault”. The southern margin is indicated by an E-W trending segmented lineaments at the latitude of about N 8°30‧, the Bedele-Metu being the most clear segment. In between these limits there are several evolved central volcanoes and cinder cones. The central volcanoes range in age from 12 to 7 Ma in the western most (Tullu Wellel) and gradually the upper limit get younger towards East to less than 1 Ma in the Wenchi and Debre Zeyt (Bishoftu) areas. These volcanic products cover the whole spectrum of a continental rift volcanic rocks suite: (1) in the eastern zone (Yerer-Bishoftu) the suite is silica over-saturated, ranging in composition from transitional basalt to peralkaline rhyolite, (2) moving westwards, between Wechacha and Wenchi, the rocks suite is silica saturated ranging in composition from alkali basalt to trachyte, (3) further West between Ijaji-Konchi and Nekemt the rocks suite is silica under-saturated ranging in composition from basanite to phonolite. Crossing the Dedessa lineament, the Tullu Wellel rocks appear to be silica saturated. Within a single suite fractional crystallization is the predominant evolutional process even in the silica over-saturated suite. The westwards progressive silica under-saturation and increase in alkalinity (except for the Tullu Wellel volcanic centers) is interpreted by the gradual deepening of an anomalous mantle where partial fusion took place. Therefore, as distance increases from the MER junction to the West, the amount of melt on the upper mantle was

  10. Structural style of the Turkana Rift, Kenya

    SciTech Connect

    Dunkelman, T.J.; Karson, J.A.; Rosendahl, B.R.

    1988-03-01

    Multifold seismic reflection and geologic mapping in part of the eastern branch of the East African Rift system of northern Kenya reveal a major rift structure containing at least 3 km of Neogene sediment fill beneath Lake Turkana. This includes a series of half-graben basins, with centrally located quaternary volcanic centers, which are linked end-to-end by structural accommodation zones. Whereas the geometry of rifting is similar to that of the nonvolcanic western branch of the East African Rift system, the Turkana half-grabens are much smaller and may reflect extension of a thinner lithosphere or development of more closely spaced fracture patterns during rift evolution, or both.

  11. Evidence for alkaline igneous activity and associated metasomatism in the Reelfoot rift, south-central Midcontinent, U. S. A

    SciTech Connect

    Goldhaber, M.B.; Diehl, S.F.; Sutley, S.J. ); Flohr, M.J.K. )

    1993-03-01

    Alkaline igneous magmatism is commonly associated with intracontinental rifts such as the Reelfoot rift (RR). Direct evidence for alkaline magmatism in the area of the RR occurs as lamprophyre and syenite encountered in deep wells. The authors' new studies of lamprophyres and sedimentary rocks from wells in the region provide additional examples of alkaline magmatism and emphasize the effects of related metasomatism. Sedimentary rocks in the Dow Chemical No. 1 Garrigan well, which is not known to contain lamprophyre dikes, probably also were metasomatically altered, as they contain authigenic fluorapatite, Ce-phosphates, and other REE-rich minerals. Enrichments of incompatible and large ion lithophile elements commonly associated with alkaline magmatism occur in the New Madrid test well, near the crest of the Pascola Arch. The carbonate-free fraction of Paleozoic rocks in this well is highly enriched in Nb (500 ppm), Ba (> 5,000 ppm), La (500 ppm), Th (1,000 ppm), and F (2,400 ppm). Abundant inclusion-rich potassium-feldspar cement in a nearby well may also be the result of alkaline metasomatism. Fluorite and elevated F concentrations are found in several wells in the RR, and contrast with stratigraphically correlative platform carbonates of the Ozark uplift, which lack F enrichment. Well and spring water samples above the RR are enriched in fluorine (as much as 5,000 ppb) compared to samples away from the rift which typically have concentrations two orders of magnitude smaller. The data and observations are consistent with relatively widespread alkaline metasomatism, which was associated with the intrusion of alkaline magmas in the RR.

  12. Sedimentary record of relay zone evolution, Central Corinth Rift (Greece): Role of fault propagation and structural inheritance.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hemelsdaël, Romain; Ford, Mary; Meyer, Nicolas

    2013-04-01

    Relay zones along rift border fault systems form topographic lows that are considered to allow the transfer of sediment from the footwall into hanging wall depocentres. Present knowledge focuses on the modifications of drainage patterns and sediment pathways across relay zones, however their vertical motion during growth and interaction of faults segments is not well documented. 3D models of fault growth and linkage are also under debate. The Corinth rift (Greece) is an ideal natural laboratory for the study of fault system evolution. Fault activity and rift depocentres migrated northward during Pliocene to Recent N-S extension. We report on the evolution of a relay zone in the currently active southern rift margin fault system from Pleistocene to present-day. The relay zone lies between the E-W East Helike (EHF) and Derveni faults (DF) that lie just offshore and around the town of Akrata. During its evolution the relay zone captured the antecedent Krathis river which continued to deposit Gilbert-type deltas across the relay zone during fault interaction, breaching and post linkage phases. Moreover our work underlines the role that pre-existing structure in the location of the transfer zone. Offshore fault geometry and kinematics, and sediment distribution were defined by interpretation and depth conversion of high resolution seismic profiles (from Maurice Ewing 2001 geophysical survey). Early lateral propagation of the EHF is recorded by synsedimentary fault propagation folds while the DF records tilted block geometries since initiation. Within the relay zone beds are gradually tilted toward the basin before breaching. These different styles of deformation highlight mechanical contrasts and upper crustal partition associated with the development of the Akrata relay zone. Onshore detailed lithostratigraphy, structure and geomorphological features record sedimentation across the subsiding relay ramp and subsequent footwall uplift after breaching. The area is

  13. Late Paleozoic crustal history of central coastal Queensland interpreted from geochemistry of Mesozoic plutons: The effects of continental rifting

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Allen, C.M.; Wooden, J.L.; Chappell, B.W.

    1997-01-01

    The eastern margin of Australia is understood to be the result of continental rifting during the Cretaceous and Tertiary. Consistent with this model, Cretaceous igneous rocks (granites to basalts) in a continental marginal setting near Bowen, Queensland are isotonically retarded, having isotopic ratios similar to those of most island arcs (Sri = 0.7030-0.7039, ??Nd = +6.46 to +3.00 and 206Pb/204Pb = 18.44-18.77, 207Pb/204Pb = 15.552-15.623, and 208Pb/204Pb = 37.90-38.52). These isotopic signatures are much less evolved than the Late Carboniferous-Permian batholith that many Cretaceous plutons intrude. As rocks ranging in age from about 300-100 Ma are well exposed near Bowen, we can track magma evolution through time. The significant change of magma source occurred much earlier than the Cretaceous based on the fact that Triassic granites in the same area are also isotonically primitive. We attribute the changes of magma composition to crustal rifting during the Late Permian and earliest Triassic. The Cretaceous rocks (actually latest Jurassic to Cretaceous, 145-98 Ma) themselves show compositional trends with time. Rocks of appropriate mineralogy for Al-in-hornblende geobarometry yield pressures ranging from 250 to 80 MPa for rocks ranging in age from 145 to 125 Ma, respectively. More significantly, this older group is relatively compositionally restricted, and is Sr-rich, and Y- and Zr-poor compared to 120-98 Ma rocks. This younger groups is bimodal, being comprised principally of basalts and rhyolites (granites). REE patterns for a given rock type, however, do not differ with age tribute these relatively subtle trace element differences to small differences in conditions (T, aH2O) at the site of melting. Cretaceous crustal rifting can explain the range of rock types and the spatial distribution of rocks < 120 Ma in a longitudinal strip between and overlapping with provinces of older Cretaceous intrusions. A subduction-related setting is assigned to the 145-125 Ma

  14. Rio Grande rift: An overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olsen, Kenneth H.; Scott Baldridge, W.; Callender, Jonathan F.

    1987-11-01

    The Rio Grande rift of the southwestern United States is one of the world's principal continental rift systems. It extends as a series of asymmetrical grabens from central Colorado, through New Mexico, to Presidio, Texas, and Chihuahua, Mexico—a distance of more than 1000 km. Although the Rio Grande rift is closely related in timing and structural style to the contiguous Basin and Range extensional province, the two can be distinguished by a variety of geological and geophysical signatures. Rifts (both oceanic and continental) can be defined as elongate depressions overlying places where the entire lithosphere has ruptured in extension. The lithosphere of the Rio Grande rift conforms to this definition, in that: (1) the crust is moderately thinned—Moho depths range from about 45 km under the flanks to about 33 km beneath the rift axis. (2) anomalously low P n velocities (7.6-7.8 km s -1) beneath the rift and a long wavelength gravity low suggest that the asthenosphere is in contact with the base of the crust. The P-velocity is abnormally low (6.4-6.5 km s -1) in the lower half of the crust beneath the rift, suggesting high crustal temperatures. However, associated seismic and volcanologic data indicate the sub-rift lower crust is not dominated by a massive composite mafic intrusion such as is sometimes inferred for the East African rifts. Seismic and magnetotelluric data suggest the presence of a thin (< 1 km) sill-like contemporary midcrustal magma body which may perhaps extend intermittently along much of the length of the rift. Seismic and structural studies indicate a dominant horizontal fabric in the upper and middle crust. The brittle-ductile transition is at depths -15 km except for the major volcanic fields, where it rises to 2-3 km. Structural development of the rift occurred mainly during two time intervals: the early phase beginning at -30 Ma. and lasting 10-12 m.y., and the late phase extending from -10 to 3 Ma. The early phase involved extensive

  15. Geochemical and Sr-Nd isotopic constraints on the mantle source of Neoproterozoic mafic dikes of the rifted eastern Laurentian margin, north-central Appalachians, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Volkert, Richard A.; Feigenson, Mark D.; Mana, Sara; Bolge, Louise

    2015-01-01

    fractures likely formed through a combination of southeast-directed extension and strike-slip shear stresses. Geochemical compositions of the dikes are the same regardless of their structural trend or location implying they formed during a single magmatic event. They, along with other mafic dikes in the north-central Appalachians, were emplaced in a within-plate tectonic setting along the rifted margin of eastern Laurentia, prior to opening of the Iapetus Ocean.

  16. Neoproterozoic A-type granitoids of the central and southern Appalachians: Intraplate magmatism associated with episodic rifting of the Rodinian supercontinent

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Tollo, R.P.; Aleinikoff, J.N.; Bartholomew, M.J.; Rankin, D.W.

    2004-01-01

    Emplacement of compositionally distinctive granitic plutons accompanied two pulses (765-680 and 620-550Ma) of crustal extension that affected the Rodinian craton at the present location of the central Appalachians during the Neoproterozoic. The dominantly metaluminous plutons display mineralogical and geochemical characteristics of A-type granites including high FeO t/MgO ratios, high abundances of Nb, Zr, Y, Ta, and REE (except Eu), and low concentrations of Sc, Ba, Sr, and Eu. These dike-like, sheet complexes occur throughout the Blue Ridge province of Virginia and North Carolina, and were emplaced at shallow levels in continental crust during active extension, forming locally multiple-intrusive plutons elongated perpendicular to the axis of extension. New U-Pb zircon ages obtained from the Polly Wright Cove (706??4Ma) and Suck Mountain (680??4Ma) plutons indicate that metaluminous magmas continued to be replenished near the end of the first pulse of rifting. The Suck Mountain body is presently the youngest known igneous body associated with earlier rifting. U-Pb zircon ages for the Pound Ridge Granite Gneiss (562??5Ma) and Yonkers Gneiss (563??2Ma) in the Manhattan prong of southeastern New York constitute the first evidence of plutonic felsic activity associated with the later period of rifting in the U.S. Appalachians, and suggest that similar melt-generation processes were operative during both intervals of crustal extension. Fractionation processes involving primary minerals were responsible for much of the compositional variation within individual plutons. Compositions of mapped lithologic units in a subset of plutons studied in detail define overlapping data arrays, indicating that, throughout the province, similar petrologic processes operated locally on magmas that became successively more chemically evolved. Limited variation in source-sensitive Y/Nb and Yb/Ta ratios is consistent with results of melting experiments and indicates that metaluminous

  17. Drilling to Resolve the Evolution of the Corinth Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McNeill, Lisa; Sakellariou, Dimitris; Nixon, Casey

    2014-05-01

    The initiation and evolution of continental rifting, ultimately leading to rifted margin and ocean basin formation, are major unanswered questions in solid Earth-plate tectonics. Many previous insights have come from mature rifted margins where activity has ceased or from computer models. The Gulf of Corinth Rift in central Greece presents an ideal laboratory for the study of young, highly active rifting that complements other rift zones (e.g., the East African and Gulf of California rifts). Exposure and preservation of syn-rift stratigraphy, high rates of extension, and an existing network of offshore seismic data offer a unique opportunity to constrain the rift history and basin development at exceptionally high resolution in the Gulf of Corinth.

  18. Temporal constraints on landscape evolution in response to rifting along the western margin of the Gulf of California, central Baja California Sur, Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mark, C.; Gupta, S.; Carter, A.; Mark, D. F.; Gautheron, C.; Martin Barajas, A.

    2011-12-01

    Rift escarpments and the high-elevation rift flanks associated with them are prominent topographic features at many developing and established passive margins. Numerical models and field investigations typically indicate that there are two principal mechanisms of rift escarpment evolution, commonly termed plateau downwearing and scarp retreat; however, many commonly studied passive margins are ancient, and have thus experienced significant post-rift modification, resulting in controversy as to which model is applicable at any particular margin. Rift flank uplift and the associated landscape changes have been less well studied; the erosional response to such uplift is often sufficient to bevel or erase the pre-rift landscape but insufficient to reset low-temperature thermochronometers, hindering field investigation. We present observations on rift landscape evolution from the Gulf of California: a ~1700 km long, highly oblique rift system. Although the precise timing of rifting remains controversial, it is known to have begun no earlier than the Mid-Miocene, and the incipient passive margins bounding the Gulf therefore retain many youthful features and provide an excellent natural laboratory for investigating landscape responses to rifting. This study examines the exhumation history of the escarpment and the development of the rift flank drainage network in the Loreto area of the Baja California Peninsula, which forms the western rift margin. Apatite (U-Th)/He (AHe) and apatite fission track (AFT) ages obtained from two escarpment-perpendicular transects from the footwall of the Loreto fault indicate that footwall denudation in response to rift flank uplift occurred at ~5.5 Ma. This age is younger than ages reported for other fundamental rift structures along the Baja California margin, and may indicate either a diachronous onset of rifting or a westward migration of extension after rifting began. A closely overlapping 40Ar/39Ar age from a lava situated near the

  19. Synsedimentary-tectonic, soft-sediment deformation and volcanism in the rifted Tethyan margin from the Upper Triassic-Middle Jurassic deep-water carbonates in Central Sicily

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Basilone, Luca; Lena, Gabriele; Gasparo-Morticelli, Maurizio

    2014-07-01

    The Pizzo Lupo section (Sicanian Mts, central Sicily) is an Upper Triassic-Lower Jurassic condensed deep-water succession, where the relationships among synsedimentary tectonic, soft-sediment deformations, volcanism and lithological changes reflect the evolution of a rift-basin. The morphostructural setting of the studied basin appears as a gently dipping slope where a fault-delimited area (graben to halfgraben) was developed. The instability of the sea floor, related to the seismic shocks, was the cause of the gravity-driven deformational sedimentary structures (slumping, breccia channelized bodies). The partly stratified basaltic rocks, with disorganized and chaotic stratification, suggest the occurrence of a volcanic complex located in neighbouring areas. A regional comparison with the tectono-sedimentary evolution of the pelagic drowning platform succession (i.e. Trapanese domain Auct.), outcropping in adjacent areas, suggests that these different domains were close to each other during the studied period forming a stepped margin platform-to-basin system. The environmental changes, synsedimentary tectonic activity and gravity-driven phenomena were the result of repeated events occurred during a long time interval, spanning from Late Triassic to Early Jurassic.

  20. 3D object-oriented image analysis in 3D geophysical modelling: Analysing the central part of the East African Rift System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fadel, I.; van der Meijde, M.; Kerle, N.; Lauritsen, N.

    2015-03-01

    Non-uniqueness of satellite gravity interpretation has traditionally been reduced by using a priori information from seismic tomography models. This reduction in the non-uniqueness has been based on velocity-density conversion formulas or user interpretation of the 3D subsurface structures (objects) based on the seismic tomography models and then forward modelling these objects. However, this form of object-based approach has been done without a standardized methodology on how to extract the subsurface structures from the 3D models. In this research, a 3D object-oriented image analysis (3D OOA) approach was implemented to extract the 3D subsurface structures from geophysical data. The approach was applied on a 3D shear wave seismic tomography model of the central part of the East African Rift System. Subsequently, the extracted 3D objects from the tomography model were reconstructed in the 3D interactive modelling environment IGMAS+, and their density contrast values were calculated using an object-based inversion technique to calculate the forward signal of the objects and compare it with the measured satellite gravity. Thus, a new object-based approach was implemented to interpret and extract the 3D subsurface objects from 3D geophysical data. We also introduce a new approach to constrain the interpretation of the satellite gravity measurements that can be applied using any 3D geophysical model.

  1. Geochemistry and zircon ages of mafic dikes in the South Qinling, central China: evidence for late Neoproterozoic continental rifting in the northern Yangtze block

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Xiyan; Chen, Fukun; Liu, Bingxiang; Zhang, He; Zhai, Mingguo

    2015-01-01

    Neoproterozoic volcanic-sedimentary sequences of the southern Qinling belt, central China, were intruded by voluminous mafic dikes. secondary ion mass spectrometry zircon U-Pb dating indicates that these dikes were emplaced at 650.8 ± 5.2 Ma, coeval with mafic rocks occurring at the northern margin of the Yangtze block. The dikes are characterized by enrichment of large ion lithophile elements, high Ti contents (up to 3.73 wt%) and Nb/Ta ratios between 14.5 and 19.6, suggesting a mantle source of oceanic island basalt affinity. Initial 87Sr/86Sr ratios show positive correlation with SiO2 contents and negative correlation with Zr/Nb ratios, implying that these rocks were affected by crustal contamination during the magma ascend and emplacement process. The dikes have initial ɛ Nd values of +0.2 to +3.3, low 206Pb/204Pb ratios of 16.96-17.45, and moderate 87Sr/86Sr ratios of 0.7043-0.7076, likely pointing to the involvement of an enriched mantle source. The mafic dikes and coeval mafic volcanic equivalents in the South Qinling and the northern Yangtze are hypothesized to be related with the prolonged breakup of the supercontinent Rodinia, suggesting that continental rifting lasted until ca. 650 Ma.

  2. Influence of rift basin geometry on the subsequent postrift sedimentation and basin inversion: The Organyà Basin and the Bóixols thrust sheet (south central Pyrenees)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mencos, Joana; Carrera, Núria; Muñoz, Josep Anton

    2015-07-01

    The extensional period in the Bay of Biscay-Pyrenean domain during the Early Cretaceous influenced subsequent Upper Cretaceous contractional Alpine structures of the Pyrenean orogen. In the Pyrenees, the Lower Cretaceous rift system shows en echelon geometries for different basins, with the Organyà Basin being one of the most important. This basin is located in the southern central Pyrenees, and the inversion of its W-E southern margin has been related to the development of the Bóixols thrust sheet, the northernmost of the south Pyrenean thrust sheets. Detailed interpretation of outcrop and seismic reflection data has revealed the presence of a NNW-SSE trending relay area, which corresponds to the western boundary of the Organyà Basin. The postrift facies belts parallel this boundary. The geometry of the contractional structures shows related variations such as changes in the structural relief and the plunge and the wavelength across this relay area. The synorogenic sediments also show characteristic thickness variations and onlap geometries perpendicular to thrust-transport direction. These evidences highlight the presence of this extensional margin and corroborate its influence in the subsequent stages of the evolution of the area. Seismic, well, and field data have been incorporated into a 3-D structural model in order to better understand the 3-D geometry of the study area.

  3. Stable oxygen and carbon isotopes of pedogenic carbonate as indicators of Plio-Pleistocene Paleoclimate in the southern Rio Grande rift, south-central New Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    Mack, G.H.; Giordano, T.H. ); Cole, D.R. ); James, W.C. ); Salyards, S.L. )

    1994-05-01

    Stable oxygen and carbon isotopes of pedogenic carbonate provide a detailed record of paleoclimatic changes from late Pliocene through early Pleistocene in the Rio Grande rift of south-central New Mexico. 30 calcic paleosols were sampled at three stratigraphic sections of the fluvial lithofacies of the Camp Rice Formation, and one calcic paleosol was sampled from fluvial sediment inset against the Camp Rice Formation. Paleosols commonly consist of an argillic B horizon (Bt) overlying a calcic (Bk) or petrocalcic (Km) horizon. The majority of paleosols consist of state II morphology calcic horizons, although one stage V horizon and five stage III horizons were also sampled. Reversal magnetostratigraphy at all four sample sites bracket the age of the paleosol-bearing strata between 2.4 and 0.7 Ma and allow estimates of the absolute age of individual paleosols. Three paleoclimatic stages are indicated by the carbon and oxygen isotopic data from south-central New Mexico. The initial stage, from 3.1 to 2.5 Ma, was characterized by the overall lowest values of [partial derivative][sup 18]O and [partial derivative][sup 13]C and by an increase in values with decreasing age, suggesting high effective moisture and abundant winter precipitation, which decreased through time, and/or relatively low temperature, which increased through time. The second stage (2.5-1.4 Ma) displays an increase in [partial derivative][sup 18]O with decreasing age but no significant change in [partial derivative][sup 13]C with time, suggesting that the effective moisture was nearly constant, but that the temperature and/or summer precipitation may have increased through time. The final stage (1.4-0.7 Ma) shows an overall increase in both [partial derivative][sup 18]P and [partial derivative][sup 13]C with decreasing age corresponding to less effective moisture, higher temperature, and/or greater summer precipitation through time. 56 refs., 6 figs., 2 tabs.

  4. Inheritance of Jurassic rifted margin architecture into the Apennines Neogene mountain building: a case history from the Lucretili Mts. (Latium, Central Italy)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bollati, Andrea; Corrado, Sveva; Marino, Maurizio

    2012-06-01

    The western Lucretili Mts. in the central Apennines (Latium, Italy) have been recently re-mapped in great detail and are the subject of combined stratigraphic, sedimentological and structural investigations. In this paper, we present a new stratigraphic interpretation of the Jurassic paleogeography of western Lucretili Mts., where a rift-derived intrabasinal paleo-high of the Alpine Tethys has been identified for the first time by means of facies analysis and biostratigraphic dating. Recognised facies associations, combined with dated stratigraphic sections, allow to define the morphology of the structural paleo-high and to identify the associated gravity-driven deposits (olistoliths) accumulated in the surrounding basin. Furthermore, we investigated the modes of interaction between Jurassic extensional structures and the subsequent contractional patterns developed during the Tertiary mountain building. In detail, the role played during Apennines tectonics by the paleo-escarpments bounding the paleo-high and by the surrounding olistoliths has been analysed. The paleo-escarpments either acted as focussing features for ENE-directed frontal thrust ramp localisation and were offset with small shortening amounts or reactivated as NNE striking high angle transpressional faults or preserved the original geometries as a result of variable orientation of paleo-escarpments with respect to the Neogene compressive stress field (with ENE oriented sigma1). Newly formed ENE striking tear faults connect these either inherited or neo-formed discontinuities. This complex stratigraphic and structural pattern is substantially different from the previous interpretations of this portion of the central Apennines based on a hypothesised layer-cake stratigraphy deformed by neo-formed Neogene thrusts. This contribution strengthens the importance of integrating facies analyses and structural investigations to detect the influence of pre-orogenic structures on compressive structural patterns

  5. Continental Rifts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosendahl, B. R.

    Continental Rifts, edited by A. M. Quennell, is a new member of the Benchmark Papers in Geology Series, edited in toto by R. W. Fairbridge. In this series the individual volume editors peruse the literature on a given topic, select a few dozen papers of ostensibly benchmark quality, and then reorder them in some sensible fashion. Some of the original papers are republished intact, but many are chopped into “McNuggets™” of information. Depending upon the volume editor, the chopping process can range from a butchering job to careful and prudent pruning. The collecting, sifting, and reorganizing tasks are, of course, equally editor-sensitive. The end product of this series is something akin to a set of Reader's Digest of Geology.

  6. Examination of the Reelfoot Rift Petroleum System, south-central United States, and the elements that remain for potential exploration and development

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Coleman, James; Pratt, Thomas L.

    2016-01-01

    No production has been established in the Reel-foot rift. However, at least nine of 22 exploratory wells have reported petroleum shows, mainly gas shows with some asphalt or solid hydrocarbon residue. Regional seismic profiling shows the presence of two large inversion structures (Blytheville arch and Pascola arch). The Blytheville arch is marked by a core of structurally thickened Elvins Shale, whereas the Pascola arch reflects the structural uplift of a portion of the entire rift basin. Structural uplift and faulting within the Reelfoot rift since the late Paleozoic appear to have disrupted older conventional hydrocarbon traps and likely spilled any potential conventional petroleum accumulations. The remaining potential resources within the Reelfoot rift are likely shale gas accumulations within the Elvins Shale; however, reservoir continuity and porosity as well as pervasive faulting appear to be significant future challenges for explorers and drillers.

  7. Evidence for hot Mississippi Valley-type brines in the Reelfoot Rift complex, south-central United States, in Late Pennsylvanian-Early Permian

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Leach, D.L.; Apodaca, L.E.; Repetski, J.E.; Powell, J.W.; Rowan, E.L.

    1997-01-01

    Petrographic and fluid inclusion studies of sparry dolomite cement from Upper Cambrian to Lower Ordovician rocks and conodont thermal-alteration indices provide evidence that hot mississippi valley-type brines were once present in the Reelfoot Rift complex. The cathodoluminescent microstratigraphy of sparry dolomite cement in the Reelfoot Rift resembles that of sparry dolomite cement associated with widespread mississippi valley-type deposition in the Ozark region. If correlative cathodoluminescent zones in the sparry dolomite from the Ozark and Reelfoot Rift regions indicate broadly contemporaneous dolomite deposition, then the results show that the Ozark MVT-type hydrothermal system extended into the Reelfoot region and onto the western flank of the Nashville Dome. Independent evidence supports migration of MVT-type brines into the Ozark region from the Reelfoot Rift complex in late Paleozoic time.

  8. Investigation of rifting processes in the Rio Grande Rift using data from unusually large earthquake swarms

    SciTech Connect

    Sanford, A.; Balch, R.; House, L.; Hartse, H.

    1995-12-01

    San Acacia Swarm in the Rio Grande Rift. Because the Rio Grande rift is one of the best seismically instrumented rift zones in the world, studying its seismicity provides an exceptional opportunity to explore the active tectonic processes within continental rifts. We have been studying earthquake swarms recorded near Socorro in an effort to link seismicity directly to the rifting process. For FY94, our research has focused on the San Acacia swarm, which occurred 25 km north of Socorro, New Mexico, along the accommodation zone between the Albuquerque-Belen and Socorro basins of the central Rio Grande rift. The swarm commenced on 25 February 1983, had a magnitude 4.2 main shock on 2 March and ended on 17 March, 1983.

  9. Subaerial exposure and drowning processes in a carbonate platform during the Mesozoic Tethyan rifting: The case of the Jurassic succession of Western Sicily (central Mediterranean)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sulli, A.; Interbartolo, F.

    2016-01-01

    The Liassic carbonate platform succession outcropping at Monte Maranfusa (central Western Sicily) consists of a shallowing-upward sequence of peritidal carbonates, with Jurassic to Paleogene pelagic limestone and siliciclastic Tertiary covers above. The cyclic sequences of subtidal wackestones/packstones, intertidal microcrystalline carbonates with bird's-eye pores, and supratidal bioclastic grainstones are interbedded with dark layers of the following composition: 1) dark-gray, compact, and well-cemented limestone with blackish clasts, interpreted as calcretes (a type of carbonate soil) and 2) reddish calcite laminae, deformed by elongated cavities, filled with vadose silt, interpreted as paleokarst. This succession is crossed by almost vertical faults, of the Late Liassic to Miocene, which often coincides with neptunian dykes, filled by several generations of Toarcian-Early Miocene pelagic sediments. Another system of dykes, known as neptunian sills, filled by injected Upper Lias-Dogger pelagic sediments, lies parallel to the stratification. The parallel dykes were caused by the flexure of the platform during the Jurassic and presumably by a planar slip in the carbonate rocks, whereas neptunian dykes are caused by faulting episodes. Here, we present evidence that the dark layers in the Liassic succession of Monte Maranfusa, previously described by many authors only as parallel dykes, can actually be interpreted as a) neptunian sills, b) pedogenic calcretes, and c) paleospeleothems. Therefore, we found evidence of exposure/flooding intervals in the evolution of the carbonate platform during the Liassic, linked to different pulses in both the subsidence/tectonic activity and the sea-level oscillations. At the top, Fe-Mn crusts (hardgrounds) seal the carbonate platform succession, which is in turn overlain by condensed pelagic deposits, confirming its drowning during rifting processes.

  10. Precessional forcing of lacustrine sedimentation in the late Cenozoic Chemeron Basin, Central Kenya Rift, and calibration of the Gauss/Matuyama boundary

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Deino, A.L.; Kingston, J.D.; Glen, J.M.; Edgar, R.K.; Hill, A.

    2006-01-01

    The fluviolacustrine sedimentary sequence of the Chemeron Formation exposed in the Barsemoi River drainage, Tugen Hills, Kenya, contains a package of five successive diatomite/fluvial cycles that record the periodic development of freshwater lakes within the axial portion of the Central Kenya Rift. The overwhelming abundance in the diatomite of planktonic species of the genera Aulacoseira and Stephanodiscus, and the virtual absence of benthic littoral diatoms and detrital material indicate areally extensive, deep lake systems. A paleomagnetic reversal stratigraphy has been determined and chronostratigraphic tie points established by 40Ar/39Ar dating of intercalated tuffs. The sequence spans the interval 3.1-2.35??Ma and bears a detailed record of the Gauss/Matuyama paleomagnetic transition. The 40Ar/39Ar age for this boundary of 2.589 ?? 0.003??Ma can be adjusted to concordance with the Astronomical Polarity Time Scale (APTS) on the basis of an independent calibration to 2.610??Ma, 29??kyr older than the previous APTS age. The diatomites recur at an orbital precessional interval of 23??kyr and are centered on a 400-kyr eccentricity maximum. It is concluded that these diatomite/fluvial cycles reflect a narrow interval of orbitally forced wet/dry climatic conditions that may be expressed regionally across East Africa. The timing of the lacustrine pulses relative to predicted insolation models favors origination of moisture from the northern Africa monsoon, rather than local circulation driven by direct equatorial insolation. This moisture event at 2.7-2.55??Ma, and later East African episodes at 1.9-1.7 and 1.1-0.9??Ma, are approximately coincident with major global climatic and oceanographic events. ?? 2006 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Tectono-sedimentary evolution of the Gondwanan Satpura Basin of central India: evidence of pre-Trap doming, rifting and pal˦oslope reversal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Casshyap, S. M.; Khan, A.

    2000-07-01

    The Mesozoic Gondwanan Satpura Basin of central India, comprising an approximately 1300 m thick sequence of the Pachmarhi, Denwa and Bagra Formations, was subjected to at least three major tectonic events. These events are manifested by tectonic dislocation, marginal uplifts, basin subsidence and deformation, as well as by stratigraphical disposition, lithofacies assemblage, and palaeoslope and pal˦ocurrent patterns. The first tectonic event is manifested by the onset of Early Triassic Pachmarhi sedimentation, which is marked in the basal part by a sudden increase of conglomeratic, pebbly, gritty to coarsegrained cross-bedded sandstone. This contrasts with the underlying fine elastics of the Late Permian Bijori Formation. The stratigraphical relationship and lithofacies, together with pal˦ocurrent and petrographic data, reflect tectonic uplift in the source area to the southeast of the Satpura Basin during or prior to the deposition of Pachmarhi Formation. The pebbly coarse sandy facies of the Pachmarhi Formation represents a braided river assemblage, overlain by a meandering river facies of the Denwa Formation, with river systems flowing dominantly from southeast to northwest. The progressive change in lithofacies and grain size upward from Pachmarhi to Denwa implies that the source area became peneplained and that the basin stabilised. During the prolonged gap of non-deposition, following the Mid-Triassic break in sedimentation after deposition of the Denwa Formation, a second tectonic event resulted in the widespread faulting and uplift of Permo-Triassic Gondwana sediments and basement rocks, respectively, to the south and north of the Narmada-Son Lineament Zone of Peninsular India. A third tectonic event is manifested by Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous Bagra conglomerate and sandstone-shale facies in the northern part of the Satpura Basin. This formation, which unconformably overlies the Precambrian, and Permian and Triassic Gondwana formations or abuts

  12. The upper mantle structure of the central Rio Grande rift region from teleseismic P and S wave travel time delays and attenuation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Slack, P.D.; Davis, P.M.; Baldridge, W.S.; Olsen, K.H.; Glahn, A.; Achauer, U.; Spence, W.

    1996-01-01

    The lithosphere beneath a continental rift should be significantly modified due to extension. To image the lithosphere beneath the Rio Grande rift (RGR), we analyzed teleseismic travel time delays of both P and S wave arrivals and solved for the attenuation of P and S waves for four seismic experiments spanning the Rio Grande rift. Two tomographic inversions of the P wave travel time data are given: an Aki-Christofferson-Husebye (ACH) block model inversion and a downward projection inversion. The tomographic inversions reveal a NE-SW to NNE-SSW trending feature at depths of 35 to 145 km with a velocity reduction of 7 to 8% relative to mantle velocities beneath the Great Plains. This region correlates with the transition zone between the Colorado Plateau and the Rio Grande rift and is bounded on the NW by the Jemez lineament, a N52??E trending zone of late Miocene to Holocene volcanism. S wave delays plotted against P wave delays are fit with a straight line giving a slope of 3.0??0.4. This correlation and the absolute velocity reduction imply that temperatures in the lithosphere are close to the solidus, consistent with, but not requiring, the presence of partial melt in the mantle beneath the Rio Grande rift. The attenuation data could imply the presence of partial melt. We compare our results with other geophysical and geologic data. We propose that any north-south trending thermal (velocity) anomaly that may have existed in the upper mantle during earlier (Oligocene to late Miocene) phases of rifting and that may have correlated with the axis of the rift has diminished with time and has been overprinted with more recent structure. The anomalously low-velocity body presently underlying the transition zone between the core of the Colorado Plateau and the rift may reflect processes resulting from the modern (Pliocene to present) regional stress field (oriented WNW-ESE), possibly heralding future extension across the Jemez lineament and transition zone.

  13. Impact of Predicted Changes in Rainfall and Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide on Maize and Wheat Yields in the Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muluneh, A.; Biazin, B.; Stroosnijder, L.; Bewket, W.; Keesstra, S.

    2014-12-01

    The objective of this study was to assess potential impacts of climate change on maize and wheat yields in the Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia. We considered effects of elevated atmospheric CO2 and changes in rainfall during the main (Kiremt) and the short (Belg) rain and cropping seasons. Crop yield simulations were made with the FAO AquaCrop model using baseline climate data and climate change scenarios projected by the ECHAM5 General Circulation Model under A2 (high) and B1 (low) emission scenarios. The MarkSimGCM daily weather generator was used to generate projected daily values of precipitation and temperature. The projected rainfall during Kiremt shows an increase by about 12-69% while projected Belg rainfall decreases by up to 68%. The mean onset of the Belg cropping season for maize is projected to be delayed by 2-9 weeks and the mean cessation is expected to be extended by more than a month in sub-humid/humid areas of the CRV. In most of the sub-humid/humid areas, the 90 day maize and wheat growing periods will not have dry spells lasting longer than 10 consecutive days. However, in the semiarid areas dry spells could last longer than 15 days. The mean simulated maize yield increased by up to 30% due to changes in the projected seasonal rainfall alone, and by up to 14% due to elevated CO2 alone. The combined effect of elevated CO2 and projected climate factors increased maize yields by up to 59% in sub-humid/humid areas, but resulted in a decrease of up to 46% in the semiarid areas. Wheat yield showed no significant response to the projected rainfall changes, but increased by up to 40% due to elevated CO2. Our results suggest that climate change will increase crop yields in the sub humid/humid regions of the CRV. However, in semi-arid areas the overall projected climate change will affect the yield negatively.

  14. The Haselgebirge evaporitic mélange in central Northern Calcareous Alps (Austria): Part of the Permian to Lower Triassic rift of the Meliata ocean?

    PubMed Central

    Schorn, Anja; Neubauer, Franz; Genser, Johann; Bernroider, Manfred

    2013-01-01

    For the reconstruction of Alpine tectonics of the Eastern Alps, the evaporitic Permian to Lower Triassic Haselgebirge Formation plays a key role in (1) the origin of Haselgebirge bearing nappes, (2) the inclusion of magmatic and metamorphic rocks revealing tectonic processes not preserved in other units, and (3) the debated mode of emplacement of the nappes, namely gravity-driven or tectonic. Within the Moosegg quarry of the central Northern Calcareous Alps gypsum/anhydrite bodies are tectonically mixed with lenses of sedimentary rocks and decimeter- to meter-sized tectonic clasts of plutonic and subvolcanic rocks and rare metamorphics. We examined various types of (1) widespread biotite–diorite, meta-syenite, (2) meta-dolerite and rare ultramafic rocks (serpentinite, pyroxenite) as well as (3) rare metamorphic banded meta-psammitic schists and meta-doleritic blueschists. The apparent 40Ar/39Ar biotite ages from three biotite–diorite, meta-dolerite and meta-doleritic blueschist samples with variable composition and fabrics range from 248 to 270 Ma (e.g., 251.2 ± 1.1 Ma) indicating a Permian age of cooling after magma crystallisation or metamorphism. The chemical composition of biotite–diorite and meta-syenite indicates an alkaline trend interpreted to represent a rift-related magmatic suite. These, as well as Permian to Jurassic sedimentary rocks, were incorporated during Cretaceous nappe emplacement forming the sulphatic Haselgebirge mélange. The scattered 40Ar/39Ar white mica ages of a meta-doleritic blueschist (of N-MORB origin) and banded meta-psammitic schist are ca. 349 and 378 Ma, respectively, proving the Variscan age of pressure-dominated metamorphism. These ages are similar to detrital white mica ages reported from the underlying Rossfeld Formations, indicating a close source–sink relationship. According to our new data, the Haselgebirge bearing nappe was transported over the Lower Cretaceous Rossfeld Formations, which include many clasts

  15. Evidence for dextral transtensional development of the Rio Grande rift, from the Bear Mountains and the Lucero uplift, central New Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    Hayden, S.N. . Dept. of Geology)

    1993-04-01

    Dextral faulting of late Eocene age associated with latest Laramide deformation has been noted for some time along the margins of, and adjacent to, the Rio Grande rift (RGr) in central NM. Recent mapping of the Hell's Mesa (HM) fault zone in the Bear Mountains and of the Comanche/Santa Fe fault zone along the western margin of the RGr at the Lucero uplift has constrained dextral deformation to extend into the Miocene, at least, and possibly into the Pliocene. The HM fault zone forms the eastern margin of the Mulligan Gulch graben between the Bear and Gallinas Mountains to the west. The main ridge of the Bear Mountains is structurally down-dropped by the HM fault and is part of the graben. This ridge is a topographic high, composed of interbedded rhyolitic ash-flow tuffs and basaltic andesite flows of the Oligocene to early Miocene Mogollon-Datil volcanic field, faulted against Eocene sediments of the Baca Formation, and Eocene to early Oligocene volcanic and volcaniclastic rocks of the Datil Group. The western margin of the RGr in the Albuquerque basin along the Lucero uplift, defined by the Comanche fault zone is structurally continuous with portions of the HM fault zone that make a right overstep through the down-dropped Navajo gap area at the southwest corner of the basin. The Comanche fault zone shows dextral-oblique shear geometry along an anastomosing zone of faulting up to 1 km wide. This zone has been intruded by hypabyssal basaltic rocks that have yielded a whole-rock K-Ar date of 27.1 Ma. In the Carrizo Arroyo (CA) area, slickenside lineations on these dikes show a strong dextral component of movement similar to that of the HM zone. The Santa Fe fault is a reverse fault for some distance north of CA. Motion on this fault has disrupted coarse sediments that contain clasts of the ca. 4.0 Ma Carrizo Mesa basalt. These observations are interpreted to indicate that dextral deformation has persisted at least through the earliest stage of extension.

  16. Syn-rift, syn-glacial and syn-orogenic sedimentary mélanges as indicators of tectonic and palaeoclimatic evolution of the Lufilian Belt, Neoproterozoic-Lower Palaeozoic of Central Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wendorff, Marek

    2010-05-01

    The Lufilian belt is an important segment of the Neoproterozoic-Lower Palaeozoic orogenic network within southern and central Africa. It deforms a sedimentary suite of the Katanga Supergroup (880-500 Ma). Mélange occurrences, traditionally called the Katangan breccias/megabreccias, are a prominent feature of the belt architecture. Some mélange bodies reach thickness of 2000 m and contain huge blocks of Katangan rocks. They were previously considered as tectonic mélanges ("friction breccias") marking regional decollement zones related to thrusting during the Pan-African orogenesis. However, these fragmental rocks were recently shown to be of sedimentary origin. They form two regionally extensive olistostrome bodies and one glaciogenic unit. The main lines of evidence for the olistostrome genesis are following: (1) lack of pervasive shearing that would point to tectonic fragmentation; (2) textures and structures diagnostic for subaqueous sediment gravity flows ranging from debris flows to turbidites; (3) roundness and provenance of clasts, and lateral facies gradients implying erosion, abrasion and unroofing of the Katangan source rocks elevated in the source areas; (4) lower boundaries of fragmental bodies are not tectonic but stratigraphic; (5) injections of unconsolidated conglomeratic matrix filling open joints in allochthonous blocks embedded in olistostrome lithosomes. The oldest mélange is a disorganised to locally organised syn rift olistostrome complex with olistoliths reaching 5 metres across. The clasts were derived from the uplifted rift margin and redeposition resulted from mass-wasting (rockfalls producing sedimentary breccias), sliding of solitary blocks, and pebbly to cobbly debris flows. The succeeding glaciogenic mélange complex originated during the Grand Conglomerat glaciation (correlative to the Sturtian glacial). It consists of disorganised clast-in-matrix facies that resulted from glacial erosion of the uplifted rift margin and

  17. Continental rift jumps

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wood, Charles A.

    1983-05-01

    Continental rift jumps, analogous to jumps of oceanic spreading ridges, are here proposed to be common. Good examples exist in Iceland and Afar (both transitional from ridge to rift jumps), West Africa (Benue Trough and Cameroon Volcanic Line), and Kenya. Indeed, the Kenya rift appears to have jumped c. 100 km eastward c. 10 m.y. ago and is currently jumping further to the east. Possible jumps exist in the Baikal rift, the Limagne-Bresse rift pair, and parallel to ancient continental margins (e.g., the Triassic basins of the eastern U.S. to Baltimore Canyon and Georges Bank). Continental rifts jump distances that are approximately equal to local lithosphere thickness, suggesting that jumped rifts are controlled by lithosphere fracturing, but there appears to be no reason for the fracturing except migration of hot spots.

  18. Pre-rift basement structure and syn-rift faulting at the eastern onshore Gulf of Corinth Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kranis, Haralambos; Skourtsos, Emmanuel; Gawthorpe, Robert; Leeder, Mike; Stamatakis, Michael

    2015-04-01

    %B We present results of recent field-based research with a view to providing information about and constraints on the initiation and evolution of the Gulf of Corinth (GoC) Rift. The onshore geology and structure of the GoC rift has been studied intensively and extensively; however most research efforts have focused on the western and partly the central parts. The last few years, efforts are being made to extend the scope of research in less-studied areas, such as the eastern southern onshore part of the GoC rift, trying to address two major issues in rift initiation and evolution, namely syn-rift faulting and pre-rift basement structure. While fault spacing and length appears to be well-constrained for the western and central parts of the GoC Rift, further east -and especially in the uplifted onshore southern part- this is thought to increase dramatically, as there are practically no mapped faults. We argue, however, that this may be a false image, owing to (i) the difficulty in identifying fault structures within a thick, fairly monotonous syn-rift sequence; (ii) the lesser attention this part has drawn; and (ii) the fact that the published summary geological and tectonic maps of the GoC area are based on the dated geological maps that cover the eastern and northern onshore shoulders of the Rift. Moreover, new field data provide new information on pre-rift structure: while only the topmost thrust sheet of the Hellenide nappe stack (Pindos Unit) was thought to crop out at the eastern southern onshore part, we mapped the underlying, non-metamorphic carbonate Unit (Tripolis Unit), which crops out within the footwall of a key intra-basin block (Xylokastro block). A minor outcrop further east, may also belong to this Unit, providing basement control, in connection with recently published offshore fault data. The mapping of these outcrops, combined with a revised stratigraphical framework for the early syn-rift deposits, allows the identification and mapping of faults

  19. Mesozoic and early Tertiary rift tectonics in East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bosworth, William

    1992-08-01

    A complex history of crustal extension occurred in east and central Africa during the Mesozoic and early Tertiary. Beginning in the Late Jurassic, this resulted in a large system of rifts, the Central African rift system, that spanned from central Sudan to southern Kenya. Late Jurassic rifting is best documented in the White and Blue Nile rifts of the Sudan, and records east-west extension in half-graben that were connected by large-scale shear zones and pull-apart basins. Early Cretaceous rifting re-activated Jurassic basins and spread to the large South Sudan rifts and Anza rift in Kenya. By the Late Cretaceous, the extension direction shifted to the NE-SW, and the presently observed large-scale rift geometry was established. In the early Tertiary, some Mesozoic basins were again reactivated, while other regions underwent wrench faulting and basin inversion. The large number of basins preserved in the Central African rift system can be used to construct an evolutionary model of continental rift tectonics. Early phases of extension at low strains produced alternating half-graben/accommodation zone geometries similar to those observed in most young and active continental rifts. At higher strains, some border faults were abandoned so that through-going, simpler active fault systems could evolve. This is interpreted as representing a switch from complex, oppositely dipping detachment structures, with strike dimensions of 50-150 km, to regional detachment structures that continue for hundreds of kilometers parallel to the rift. This change in the type of detachment was accompanied by a shift in the position of the subsidence away from the breakaway to a position focused further within the regional upper plate. Non-rotational, high angle, normal faulting dominates in the development of these late basin geometries. Deciphering similar rift basin histories from passive continental margins may, in many cases, exceed the limits of available reflection seismic data. East

  20. Understanding Natural and Human-induced Impacts on the Hydrology of Central Rift Valley Lakes in Ethiopia Using Hydrologic Modeling and Remote Sensing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seyoum, W. M.; Milewski, A.

    2013-12-01

    In the past decades lake level fluctuations have been observed in the Central Rift Valley (CRV) lakes of Ethiopia, specifically Lake Abiyata, which is receding at an alarming rate. The cause is largely unknown and thus this research identifies and quantifies the causes and effects of climate variability and human-induced factors on the CRV lakes in Ethiopia using ground data, remote sensing, and hydrologic modeling. The CRV is a closed basin with an area of 10,185 sq. km. and contains three major surficially interconnected lakes: Lake Abiyata, Lake Langano and Lake Ziway. Remote sensing data (e.g. LANDSAT and TRMM) and ground data (e.g. river discharge, lake levels) was analyzed to understand the impact of climate variability on the lakes. Image processing such as radiometric correction and Normalized Difference Water Index (NDWI) was performed to calculate the surface area of the lakes and understand the temporal variation. The semi-distributed physically based hydrologic model, Soil Water Assessment Tool (SWAT), was employed to estimate the total surface runoff to the lakes. SWAT was simulated from 1980 to 2010 and monthly preliminary calibration was performed from 1985 to 2000 using two river gauging stations. The preliminary R2 and Nash-Sutcliffe simulation efficiency values are 0.65 and 0.60, and 0.61 and 0.60. The output from SWAT, total runoff, along with precipitation and evaporation is used to calculate the water budget of each lake. Changes in the total volume of lake water were converted to changes in water heights using the geometry data of lakes (e.g. bathymetry data). The modeled lake level time series, which does not take into account the abstraction rates, are compared with the remote sensing and ground observed data. Surface area mapping from satellite imagery shows that the surface Area of L. Ziway and L. Langano remained unchanged throughout the period 1985 - 2010, whereas the surface area of L. Abiyata is decreasing from approximately 180 sq. km

  1. Understanding Natural and Human-induced Impacts on the Hydrology of Central Rift Valley Lakes in Ethiopia Using Hydrologic Modeling and Remote Sensing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seyoum, W. M.; Milewski, A.

    2011-12-01

    In the past decades lake level fluctuations have been observed in the Central Rift Valley (CRV) lakes of Ethiopia, specifically Lake Abiyata, which is receding at an alarming rate. The cause is largely unknown and thus this research identifies and quantifies the causes and effects of climate variability and human-induced factors on the CRV lakes in Ethiopia using ground data, remote sensing, and hydrologic modeling. The CRV is a closed basin with an area of 10,185 sq. km. and contains three major surficially interconnected lakes: Lake Abiyata, Lake Langano and Lake Ziway. Remote sensing data (e.g. LANDSAT and TRMM) and ground data (e.g. river discharge, lake levels) was analyzed to understand the impact of climate variability on the lakes. Image processing such as radiometric correction and Normalized Difference Water Index (NDWI) was performed to calculate the surface area of the lakes and understand the temporal variation. The semi-distributed physically based hydrologic model, Soil Water Assessment Tool (SWAT), was employed to estimate the total surface runoff to the lakes. SWAT was simulated from 1980 to 2010 and monthly preliminary calibration was performed from 1985 to 2000 using two river gauging stations. The preliminary R2 and Nash-Sutcliffe simulation efficiency values are 0.65 and 0.60, and 0.61 and 0.60. The output from SWAT, total runoff, along with precipitation and evaporation is used to calculate the water budget of each lake. Changes in the total volume of lake water were converted to changes in water heights using the geometry data of lakes (e.g. bathymetry data). The modeled lake level time series, which does not take into account the abstraction rates, are compared with the remote sensing and ground observed data. Surface area mapping from satellite imagery shows that the surface Area of L. Ziway and L. Langano remained unchanged throughout the period 1985 - 2010, whereas the surface area of L. Abiyata is decreasing from approximately 180 sq. km

  2. Style of rifting and the stages of Pangea breakup

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frizon de Lamotte, Dominique; Fourdan, Brendan; Leleu, Sophie; Leparmentier, François; Clarens, Philippe

    2015-05-01

    Pangea results from the progressive amalgamation of continental blocks achieved at 320 Ma. Assuming that the ancient concept of "active" versus "passive" rifting remains pertinent as end-members of more complex processes, we show that the progressive Pangea breakup occurred through a succession of rifting episodes characterized by different tectonic evolutions. A first episode of passive continental rifting during the Upper Carboniferous and Permian led to the formation of the Neo-Tethys Ocean. Then at the beginning of Triassic times, two short episodes of active rifting associated to the Siberian and Emeishan large igneous provinces (LIPs) failed. The true disintegration of Pangea resulted from (1) a Triassic passive rifting leading to the emplacement of the central Atlantic magmatic province (200 Ma) LIP and the subsequent opening of the central Atlantic Ocean during the lowermost Jurassic and from (2) a Lower Jurassic active rifting triggered by the Karoo-Ferrar LIP (183 Ma), which led to the opening of the West Indian Ocean. The same sequence of passive then active rifting is observed during the Lower Cretaceous with, in between, the Parana-Etendeka LIP at 135 Ma. We show that the relationships between the style of rifts and their breakdown or with the type of resulting margins (as magma poor or magma dominated) are not straightforward. Finally, we discuss the respective role of mantle global warming promoted by continental agglomeration and mantle plumes in the weakening of the continental lithosphere and their roles as rifting triggers.

  3. The 1974 Ethiopian rift geodimeter survey

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mohr, P.

    1977-01-01

    The field techniques and methods of data reduction for five successive geodimeter surveys in the Ethiopian rift valley are enlarged upon, with the considered conclusion that there is progressive accumulation of upper crustal strain, consonant with on-going rift extension. The extension is restricted to the Quaternary volcanotectonic axis of the rift, namely the Wonji fault belt, and is occurring at rates of 3 to 6 mm/yr in the northern sector of the rift valley. Although this concurs with the predictions of platetectonic analysis of the Afar triple junction, it is considered premature to endorse such a concurrence on the basis of only 5 years of observations. This is underlined by the detection of local tectonic contractions and expansions associated with geothermal and gravity anomalies in the central sector of the rift valley. There is a hint of a component of dextral slip along some of the rift-floor fault zones, both from geological evidence and from the strain patterns detected in the present geodetic surveys.

  4. Surface deformation in volcanic rift zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pollard, David D.; Delaney, Paul T.; Duffield, Wendell A.; Endo, Elliot T.; Okamura, Arnold T.

    1983-05-01

    The principal conduits for magma transport within rift zones of basaltic volcanoes are steeply dipping dikes, some of which feed fissure eruptions. Elastic displacements accompanying a single dike emplacement elevate the flanks of the rift relative to a central depression. Concomitant normal faulting may transform the depression into a graben thus accentuating the topographic features of the rift. If eruption occurs the characteristic ridge-trough-ridge displacement profile changes to a single ridge, centered at the fissure, and the erupted lava alters the local topography. A well-developed rift zone owes its structure and topography to the integrated effects of many magmatic rifting events. To investigate this process we compute the elastic displacements and stresses in a homogeneous, two-dimensional half-space driven by a pressurized crack that may breach the surface. A derivative graphical method permits one to estimate the three geometric parameters of the dike (height, inclination, and depth-to-center) and the mechanical parameter (driving pressure/rock stiffness) from a smoothly varying displacement profile. Direct comparison of measured and theoretical profiles may be used to estimate these parameters even if inelastic deformation, notably normal faulting, creates discontinuities in the profile. Geological structures (open cracks, normal faults, buckles, and thrust faults) form because of stresses induced by dike emplacement and fissure eruption. Theoretical stress states associated with dilation of a pressurized crack are used to interpret the distribution and orientation of these structures and their role in rift formation.

  5. Surface deformation in volcanic rift zones

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pollard, D.D.; Delaney, P.T.; Duffield, W.A.; Endo, E.T.; Okamura, A.T.

    1983-01-01

    The principal conduits for magma transport within rift zones of basaltic volcanoes are steeply dipping dikes, some of which feed fissure eruptions. Elastic displacements accompanying a single dike emplacement elevate the flanks of the rift relative to a central depression. Concomitant normal faulting may transform the depression into a graben thus accentuating the topographic features of the rift. If eruption occurs the characteristic ridge-trough-ridge displacement profile changes to a single ridge, centered at the fissure, and the erupted lava alters the local topography. A well-developed rift zone owes its structure and topography to the integrated effects of many magmatic rifting events. To investigate this process we compute the elastic displacements and stresses in a homogeneous, two-dimensional half-space driven by a pressurized crack that may breach the surface. A derivative graphical method permits one to estimate the three geometric parameters of the dike (height, inclination, and depth-to-center) and the mechanical parameter (driving pressure/rock stiffness) from a smoothly varying displacement profile. Direct comparison of measured and theoretical profiles may be used to estimate these parameters even if inelastic deformation, notably normal faulting, creates discontinuities in the profile. Geological structures (open cracks, normal faults, buckles, and thrust faults) form because of stresses induced by dike emplacement and fissure eruption. Theoretical stress states associated with dilation of a pressurized crack are used to interpret the distribution and orientation of these structures and their role in rift formation. ?? 1983.

  6. Structure of continental rifts: Role of older features and magmatism

    SciTech Connect

    Keller, G.R. )

    1996-01-01

    Recent geological and geophysical studies in several continental rifts have begun to shed light on the details of the processes which govern the structural evolution of these important exploration targets. In Kenya and Tanzania, the classic East African rift has been the object of several investigations which reveal that its location follows the boundary (suture ) between the Tanzanian craton (Archean) and Mozambiquan belt (Proterozoic), The Baikal rift also follows a similar boundary, and the Mid-continent rift of North America appears to do the same. Rifts themselves often act as zones of weakness which are reactivated by younger tectonic regimes. The classic North American example of this effect is the Eocambrian Southern Oklahoma aulacogen which was deformed to create the Anadarko basin and Wichita uplift in the late Paleozoic. The Central basin platform has a similar history although the original rift formed at [approximately]1,100Ma. Integration of geophysical data with petrologic and geochemical data from several rift zones has also provided a new picture of the nature and extent of magmatic modification of the crust. An interesting contradiction is that Phanerozoic rifts, except the Afar region, show little evidence for major magmatic modification of the crust whereas, at least in North America, many Precambrian rifts are associated with very large mafic bodies in the crust. The Kenya rift displays evidence for modification of the lower crust in a two-phase magmatic history, but upper crustal magmatic features are limited to local intrusions associated with volcanoes. In this rift, complex basement structure plays a much more important role than previously realized, and the geophysical signatures of basement structure and magmatism are easy to confuse. If this is also the case in other rifts, additional rift basins remain to be discovered.

  7. Structure of continental rifts: Role of older features and magmatism

    SciTech Connect

    Keller, G.R.

    1996-12-31

    Recent geological and geophysical studies in several continental rifts have begun to shed light on the details of the processes which govern the structural evolution of these important exploration targets. In Kenya and Tanzania, the classic East African rift has been the object of several investigations which reveal that its location follows the boundary (suture ?) between the Tanzanian craton (Archean) and Mozambiquan belt (Proterozoic), The Baikal rift also follows a similar boundary, and the Mid-continent rift of North America appears to do the same. Rifts themselves often act as zones of weakness which are reactivated by younger tectonic regimes. The classic North American example of this effect is the Eocambrian Southern Oklahoma aulacogen which was deformed to create the Anadarko basin and Wichita uplift in the late Paleozoic. The Central basin platform has a similar history although the original rift formed at {approximately}1,100Ma. Integration of geophysical data with petrologic and geochemical data from several rift zones has also provided a new picture of the nature and extent of magmatic modification of the crust. An interesting contradiction is that Phanerozoic rifts, except the Afar region, show little evidence for major magmatic modification of the crust whereas, at least in North America, many Precambrian rifts are associated with very large mafic bodies in the crust. The Kenya rift displays evidence for modification of the lower crust in a two-phase magmatic history, but upper crustal magmatic features are limited to local intrusions associated with volcanoes. In this rift, complex basement structure plays a much more important role than previously realized, and the geophysical signatures of basement structure and magmatism are easy to confuse. If this is also the case in other rifts, additional rift basins remain to be discovered.

  8. The Role of Rift Obliquity During Pangea Fragmentation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brune, S.; Butterworth, N. P.; Williams, S.; Müller, D.

    2014-12-01

    Does supercontinent break-up follow specific laws? What parameters control the success and the failure of rift systems? Recent analytical and geodynamic modeling suggests that oblique rifting is energetically preferred over orthogonal rifting. This implies that during rift competition, highly oblique branches proceed to break-up while less oblique ones become inactive. These models predict that the relative motion of Earth's continents during supercontinent break-up is affected by the orientation and shape of individual rift systems. Here, we test this hypothesis based on latest plate tectonic reconstructions. Using PyGPlates, a recently developed Python library that allows script-based access to the plate reconstruction software GPlates, we quantify rift obliquity, extension velocity and their temporal evolution for continent-scale rift systems of the past 200 Myr. Indeed we find that many rift systems contributing to Pangea fragmentation involved strong rift obliquity. East and West Gondwana for instance split along the East African coast with a mean obliquity of 55° (measured as the angle between local rift trend normal and extension direction). While formation of the central and southern South Atlantic segment involved a low obliquity of 10°, the Equatorial Atlantic opened under a high angle of 60°. Rifting between Australia and Antarctica involved two stages with 25° prior to 100 Ma followed by 50° obliquity and distinct increase of extension velocity. Analyzing the entire passive margin system that formed during Pangea breakup, we find a mean obliquity of 40°, with a standard deviation of 20°. Hence 50% of these margins formed with an angle of 40° or more. Considering that many conceptual models of rifting and passive margin formation assume 2D deformation, our study quantifies the degree to which such 2D models are globally applicable, and highlights the importance of 3D models where oblique rifting is the dominant mode of deformation.

  9. Rift Valley Fever Virus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a mosquito-transmitted virus or arbovirus that is endemic in sub-Saharan Africa. In the last decade, Rift Valley fever (RVF) outbreaks have resulted in loss of human and animal life, as well as had significant economic impact. The disease in livestock is primarily a...

  10. Geophysical study of the crust and upper mantle beneath the central Rio Grande rift and adjacent Great Plains and Colorado Plateau

    SciTech Connect

    Ander, M.E.

    1981-03-01

    As part of the national hot dry rock (HDR) geothermal program conducted by Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory, a regional deep magnetotelluric (MT) survey of Arizona and New Mexico was performed. The main objective of the MT project was to produce a regional geoelectric contour map of the pervasive deep electrical conductor within the crust and/or upper mantle beneath the Colorado Plateau, Basin and Range Province, and Rio Grande rift. Three MT profiles cross the Jemez lineament. Preliminary one-dimensional analysis of the data suggest the lineament is associated with anomalously high electrical conductivity very shallow in the crust. An MT/audiomagnetotelluric (AMT) study of a 161 km/sup 2/ HDR prospect was performed on the Zuni Indian Reservation, New Mexico. Two-dimensional gravity modeling of a 700-km gravity profile at 34/sup 0/30'N latitude was used to study the crust and upper mantle beneath the Rio Grande rift. Several models of each of three consecutive layers were produced using all available geologic and geophysical constraints. Two short-wavelength anomalies along the gravity profile were analyzed using linear optimization techniques.

  11. Sedimentology of an intra-montane rift-controlled fluvial dominated succession: The Upper Triassic Oukaimeden Sandstone Formation, Central High Atlas, Morocco

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fabuel-Perez, I.; Redfern, J.; Hodgetts, D.

    2009-06-01

    Triassic successions in the High Atlas of Marrakech (Morocco) provide excellent outcrop analogues for continental fluvial systems within an intra-montane rift basin and allow the study of facies distribution and controls on deposition. This paper focuses on the analysis of the Oukaimeden Sandstone Formation (F5), a fluvial dominated formation deposited in an active rift setting. Combination of traditional sedimentological field analysis with modern digital data capture techniques (e.g. spectral gamma-ray, LIDAR terrestrial scanner imaging) allows a detailed description and interpretation of the facies. The Oukaimeden Sandstone Formation is composed of channel sandstone bodies alternating with lenticular shaped fluvial bar sandstones and overbank mudstone deposits. Alternating with the fluvial facies, aeolian sandstones and alluvial fan deposits are also observed. Changes in architectural style are used to subdivide the formation into three members. The lower member (Lower Oukaimeden ) was deposited by an ephemeral braided system. The middle member (Middle Oukaimeden) records a change to perennial braided fluvial conditions in response to tectonics combined with a change in climate towards more humid conditions. The upper member (Upper Oukaimeden) is characterized by the return to ephemeral conditions, which combined with the occurrence of aeolian dunes, is interpreted to record increased aridity. The upper part of the member exhibits tidal influence, related to the first marine incursion into the basin. The Oukaimeden Sandstone Formation provide a well documented outcrop example of deposition within an intra-montane setting influenced by a combination of tectonic and climatic controls.

  12. Rift initiation with volatiles and magma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ebinger, Cynthia; Muirhead, James; Roecker, Steve; Tiberi, Christel; Muzuka, Alfred; Ferdinand, Rrichard; Mulibo, Gabrile; Kianji, Gladys

    2015-04-01

    Rift initiation in cratonic lithosphere remains an outstanding problem in continental tectonics, but strain and magmatism patterns in youthful sectors of the East African rift provide new insights. Few teleseisms occur in the Eastern rift arm of the East African rift system, except the southernmost sector in northern Tanzania where extension occurs in Archaean lithosphere. The change in seismic energy release occurs over a narrow along-axis zone, and between sectors with and without volcanoes in the central rift valley. Are these differences in strain behavior indicative of along-strike variations in a) rheology; b) strain transfer from border faults to magma intrusion zones; c) dike vs fault slip; and/or d) shallow vs deep magma chambers? We present time-space relations of seismicity recorded on a 38-station array spanning the Kenya-Tanzania border, focal mechanisms for the largest events during those time periods, and compare these to longer-term strain patterns. Lower crustal seismicity occurs along the rift length, including sectors on and off craton, and those with and without central rift valley volcanoes, and we see no clear along-strike variation in seismogenic layer thickness. One explanation for widespread lower crustal seismicity is high gas pressures and volatile migration from active metasomatism of upper mantle and magma degassing, consistent with very high volatile flux along fault zones, and widespread metasomatism of xenoliths. Volatile release and migration may be critical to strength reduction of initially cold, strong cratonic lithosphere. Seismicity patterns indicate strain (and fluid?) transfer from the Manyara border fault to Gelai shield volcano (faulting, diking) via Oldoinyo Lengai volcano. Our focal mechanisms and Global CMTs from an intense fault-dike episode (2007) show a local, temporally stable, rotation from ~E-W extension to NE-SE extension in this linkage zone, consistent with longer term patterns recorded in vent and eruptive

  13. Tectono-Sedimentary Analysis of Rift Basins: Insights from the Corinth Rift, Greece

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gawthorpe, Robert; Ford, Mary

    2015-04-01

    Existing models for the tectono-sedimentary evolution of rift basins are strongly linked the growth and linkage of normal fault segments and localization of fault activity. Early stages of faulting (rift initiation phase) are characterized by distributed, short, low displacement fault segments, subdued fault-related topography and small depocentres within which sedimentation keeps pace with subsidence. Following linkage and displacement localization (rift climax phase), deformation if focused onto major, crustal-scale fault zones with kilometre-scale displacement. These major faults generate pronounced tilted fault-block topography, with subsidence rates that outpace sedimentation causing a pronounced change to deep-water deposition. Such models have been successful in helping to understand the gross structural and sedimentary evolution of rift basins, but recent work has suggested that pre-existing structures, normal fault interaction with pre-rift salt and antecedent drainage systems significantly alter this initiation-to-climax perspective of rift basin development. The E-W-striking, Pliocene-Pleistocene Corinth rift, central Greece, is an excellent natural laboratory for studying the tectono-sedimentary evolution of rift basins due to its young age, excellent onshore exposure of syn-rift structure and stratigraphy and extensive offshore seismic data. The rift cuts across the NW-SE-striking Hellenide mountain belt and has migrated northward and westward during its evolution. The Hellenide mountain belt significantly influences topography and drainage in the west of the rift. High topography and large antecedent drainage systems, focused along palaeovalleys, provided high sediment flux to NE-flowing alluvial systems that overfilled early-rift depocentres. Further east, away from the main antecedent drainage networks, contemporaneous deposits comprise deep-lacustrine turbidite channel and lobe complexes and basinal marls. Thus the stratigraphic expression within

  14. Investigation of rifting processes in the Rio Grande Rift using data from an unusually large earthquake swarm. Final report, October 1, 1992--September 30, 1993

    SciTech Connect

    Sanford, A.; Balch, R.; Hartse, H.; House, L.

    1995-03-01

    Because the Rio Grande Rift is one of the best seismically instrumented rift zones in the world, studying its seismicity provides an exceptional opportunity to elucidate the active tectonic processes within continental rifts. Beginning on 29 November 1989, a 15 square km region near Bernardo, NM, produced the strongest and longest lasting sequence of earthquakes in the rift in 54 years. Our research focuses on the Bernardo swarm which occurred 40 km north of Socorro, New Mexico in the axial region of the central Rio Grande rift. Important characteristics concerning hypocenters, fault mechanisms, and seismogenic zones are discussed.

  15. East African Rift

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2008-01-01

    Places where the earth's crust has formed deep fissures and the plates have begun to move apart develop rift structures in which elongate blocks have subsided relative to the blocks on either side. The East African Rift is a world-famous example of such rifting. It is characterized by 1) topographic deep valleys in the rift zone, 2) sheer escarpments along the faulted walls of the rift zone, 3) a chain of lakes within the rift, most of the lakes highly saline due to evaporation in the hot temperatures characteristic of climates near the equator, 4) voluminous amounts of volcanic rocks that have flowed from faults along the sides of the rift, and 5) volcanic cones where magma flow was most intense. This example in Kenya displays most of these features near Lake Begoria.

    The image was acquired December 18, 2002, covers an area of 40.5 x 32 km, and is located at 0.1 degrees north latitude, 36.1 degrees east longitude.

    The U.S. science team is located at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. The Terra mission is part of NASA's Science Mission Directorate.

  16. Identification of central Kenyan Rift Valley Fever virus vector habitats with Landsat TM and evaluation of their flooding status with airborne imaging radar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pope, K. O.; Sheffner, E. J.; Linthicum, K. J.; Bailey, C. L.; Logan, T. M.; Kasischke, E. S.; Birney, K.; Njogu, A. R.; Roberts, C. R.

    1992-01-01

    Rift Valley Fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne virus that affects livestock and humans in Africa. Landsat TM data are shown to be effective in identifying dambos, intermittently flooded areas that are potential mosquite breeding sites, in an area north of Nairobi, Kenya. Positive results were obtained from a limited test of flood detection in dambos with airborne high resolution L, C, and X band multipolarization SAR imagery. L and C bands were effective in detecting flooded dambos, but LHH was by far the best channel for discrimination between flooded and nonflooded sites in both sedge and short-grass environments. This study demonstrates the feasibility of a combined passive and active remote sensing program for monitoring the location and condition of RVF vector habitats, thus making future control of the disease more promising.

  17. Anisotropic zonation in the lithosphere of Central North America: Influence of a strong cratonic lithosphere on the Mid-Continent Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ola, O.; Frederiksen, A. W.; Bollmann, T.; van der Lee, S.; Darbyshire, F.; Wolin, E.; Revenaugh, J.; Stein, C.; Stein, S.; Wysession, M.

    2016-06-01

    We present shear-wave splitting analyses of SKS and SKKS waves recorded at sixteen Superior Province Rifting Earthscope Experiment (SPREE) seismic stations on the north shore of Lake Superior, as well as fifteen selected Earthscope Transportable Array instruments south of the lake. These instruments bracket the Mid-Continent Rift (MCR) and sample the Superior, Penokean, Yavapai and Mazatzal tectonic provinces. The data set can be explained by a single layer of anisotropic fabric, which we interpret to be dominated by a lithospheric contribution. The fast S polarization directions are consistently ENE-WSW, but the split time varies greatly across the study area, showing strong anisotropy (up to 1.48 s) in the western Superior, moderate anisotropy in the eastern Superior, and moderate to low anisotropy in the terranes south of Lake Superior. We locate two localized zones of very low split time (< 0.6 s) adjacent to the MCR: one in the Nipigon Embayment, an MCR-related magmatic feature immediately north of Lake Superior, and the other adjacent to the eastern end of the lake, at the southern end of the Kapuskasing Structural Zone (KSZ). Both low-splitting zones are adjacent to sharp bends in the MCR axis. We interpret these two zones, along with a low-velocity linear feature imaged by a previous tomographic study beneath Minnesota and the Dakotas, as failed lithospheric branches of the MCR. Given that all three of these branches failed to propagate into the Superior Province lithosphere, we propose that the sharp bend of the MCR through Lake Superior is a consequence of the high mechanical strength of the Superior lithosphere ca. 1.1 Ga.

  18. Rift Valley Fever (RVF)

    MedlinePlus

    ... Outbreak resources, VHF information for specific groups, virus ecology, references... RVF Distribution Map Rift Valley Fever Transmission ... Outbreaks Outbreak Summaries RVF Distribution Map Resources Virus Ecology File Formats Help: How do I view different ...

  19. Structural and stratigraphic evolution of the Anza rift, Kenya

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bosworth, William; Morley, Chris K.

    1994-09-01

    The Anza rift is a large, multi-phase continental rift basin that links the Lamu embayment of southern Kenya with the South Sudan rifts. Extension and deposition of syn-rift sediments are known to have commenced by the Neocomian. Aptian-Albian strata have, thus far, not been encountered during limited drilling campaigns and, in at least one well, are replaced by a significant unconformity. Widespread rifting occurred during the Cenomanian to Maastrichtian, and continued into the Early Tertiary. Marine waters appear to have reached the central Anza rift in the Cenomanian, and a second marine incursion may have occurred during the Campanian. As no wells have yet reached basement in the basinal deeps, the possibility exists that the Anza rift may have initiated in the Late Jurassic, in conjunction with extension to the south in the Lamu embayment and to the north in the Blue Nile rift of Sudan. Structural and stratigraphic evolution in the Anza rift followed a pattern that has now been inferred in several rift settings. Early phases of extension were accommodated by moderately dipping faults that produced large stratal rotations. Sedimentary environments were dominantly fluvial, with associated small lakes and dune fields. Volcanic activity is documented for the early Neocomian, but its extent is unknown. This initial style of deformation and sedimentation may have continued through several of the earliest pulses of rifting. By the Late Cretaceous, a new system of steeply dipping faults was established, that produced a deep basin without significant rotation of strata in the north, and only minor rotation in the south. This basin geometry favored the establishment of large, deep lakes, which occasionally were connected to the sea. The older basins were partly cannibalized during the sedimentary in-filling of these successor basins. Early Senonian volcanism was encountered in one well, and reflection seismic evidence suggests that one or more thick, regionally

  20. Geochemistry and water quality assessment of central Main Ethiopian Rift natural waters with emphasis on source and occurrence of fluoride and arsenic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rango, Tewodros; Bianchini, Gianluca; Beccaluva, Luigi; Tassinari, Renzo

    2010-07-01

    Drinking water supply for the Main Ethiopian Rift (MER) area principally relies on groundwater wells and springs and is characterized by natural source of elevated fluoride concentration. New analyses reveal that the F - geochemical anomaly is associated with other potentially toxic elements such as As, U, Mo and B. Particularly, 35% of the 23 investigated groundwater wells and 70% of the 14 hot springs (and geothermal wells) show arsenic concentrations above the recommended limit of 10 μg/L ( WHO, 2006). Arsenic in groundwater wells has a positive correlation with Na + ( R2 = 0.63) and alkalinity ( HCO3-; R2 = 0.70) as well as with trace elements such as U ( R2 = 0.70), Mo ( R2 = 0.79) and V ( R2 = 0.68). PHREEQC speciation modelling indicates that Fe oxides and hydroxides are stable in water systems, suggesting their role as potential adsorbents that could influence the mobility of arsenic. Chemical analyses of leachates from MER rhyolitic rocks and their weathered and re-worked fluvio-lacustrine sediments were performed to evaluate their contribution as a source of the mentioned geochemical anomalies. These leachates were obtained from a 1-year leaching experiment on powdered rocks and sediments mixed with distilled water (10 g:50 ml). They contain as much as 220 μg/L of As, 7.6 mg/L of F -, 181 μg/L of Mo, 64 μg/L of U and 254 μg/L of V suggesting that the local sediments represent the main source and reservoir of toxic elements. These elements, originally present in the glassy portion of the MER rhyolitic rocks were progressively concentrated in weathered and re-deposited products. Therefore, together with the renowned F - problem, the possible presence of further geochemical anomalies have to be considered in water quality issues and future work has to investigate their possible health impact on the population of MER and other sectors of the East African Rift.

  1. Left-lateral shear inside the North Gulf of Evia Rift, Central Greece, evidenced by relocated earthquake sequences and moment tensor inversion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ganas, Athanassios; Mouzakiotis, Evangelos; Moshou, Alexandra; Karastathis, Vassilios

    2016-07-01

    The use of local velocity model in the analysis of seismicity recorded by the Hellenic Unified Seismological Network (HUSN), provides the opportunity to determine accurate hypocentral solutions using the weighted P- and S-wave arrival times for the November 2013, November 2014 and June 2015 North Gulf of Evia (Euboea) sequences. The hypocentral locations, including the determination of the location uncertainties, are obtained applying the non-linear probabilistic analysis. We also calculated the moment tensor solutions for the main events as well as for the strongest aftershocks. The accurate determination of seismicity showed the activation of two left-lateral, NW-SE striking, near-vertical faults, one onshore near village Taxiarchis (2013 sequence) and one offshore (offshore Malessina Peninsula, 2015 sequence). The 2014 sequence, also offshore Malessina Peninsula ruptured an oblique-slip, north-dipping normal fault with a strike of N280-290°E. All three faults occur at depths 10-16 km, with rupture zone dimensions 5-6 km along strike and 3-4 km along dip. These aftershock depths indicate a seismogenic (brittle) zone of about 15 km in depth for this rift. The left-lateral kinematics indicates strain partitioning inside the rift because of E-W horizontal compression, also evidenced by GPS data. The moderate magnitude of earthquakes (M5.2 ± 0.1) indicates that strike-slip events have a minor contribution to the crustal deformation and to active tectonics of the Gulf. Supplementary Information - Fig S2. Map of Greece showing seismic stations (green triangles) used in moment tensor analysis. Yellow stars show epicenter of mainshocks. Supplementary Fig. S3. a: Moment tensor solution of the 12 November 2013 (18:09 UTC) earthquake. To the left observed and synthetic displacement waveforms (continuous and dotted lines respectively) are shown, at the inverted stations for the radial, tangential and vertical components. At the right part of the figure the summary of the

  2. Identifying buried segments of active faults in the northern Rio Grande Rift using aeromagnetic, LiDAR,and gravity data, south-central Colorado, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ruleman, Cal; Grauch, V. J.

    2013-01-01

    Combined interpretation of aeromagnetic and LiDAR data builds on the strength of the aeromagnetic method to locate normal faults with significant offset under cover and the strength of LiDAR interpretation to identify the age and sense of motion of faults. Each data set helps resolve ambiguities in interpreting the other. In addition, gravity data can be used to infer the sense of motion for totally buried faults inferred solely from aeromagnetic data. Combined interpretation to identify active faults at the northern end of the San Luis Basin of the northern Rio Grande rift has confirmed general aspects of previous geologic mapping but has also provided significant improvements. The interpretation revises and extends mapped fault traces, confirms tectonic versus fluvial origins of steep stream banks, and gains additional information on the nature of active and potentially active partially and totally buried faults. Detailed morphology of surfaces mapped from the LiDAR data helps constrain ages of the faults that displace the deposits. The aeromagnetic data provide additional information about their extents in between discontinuous scarps and suggest that several totally buried, potentially active faults are present on both sides of the valley.

  3. Turning soil survey data into digital soil maps in the Energy Region Eger Research Model Area

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pásztor, László; Dobos, Anna; Kürti, Lívia; Takács, Katalin; Laborczi, Annamária

    2015-04-01

    Agria-Innoregion Knowledge Centre of the Eszterházy Károly College has carried out targeted basic researches in the field of renewable energy sources and climate change in the framework of TÁMOP-4.2.2.A-11/1/KONV project. The project has covered certain issues, which require the specific knowledge of the soil cover; for example: (i) investigation of quantitative and qualitative characteristics of natural and landscape resources; (ii) determination of local amount and characteristics of renewable energy sources; (iii) natural/environmental risk analysis by surveying the risk factors. The Energy Region Eger Research Model Area consists of 23 villages and is located in North-Hungary, at the Western part of Bükkalja. Bükkalja is a pediment surface with erosional valleys and dense river network. The diverse morphology of this area results diversity in soil types and soil properties as well. There was large-scale (1:10,000 and 1:25,000 scale) soil mappings in this area in the 1960's and 1970's which provided soil maps, but with reduced spatial coverage and not with fully functional thematics. To achive the recent tasks (like planning suitable/optimal land-use system, estimating biomass production and development of agricultural and ecomonic systems in terms of sustainable regional development) new survey was planned and carried out by the staff of the College. To map the soils in the study area 10 to 22 soil profiles were uncovered per settlement in 2013 and 2014. Field work was carried out according to the FAO Guidelines for Soil Description and WRB soil classification system was used for naming soils. According to the general goal of soil mapping the survey data had to be spatially extended to regionalize the collected thematic local knowledge related to soil cover. Firstly three thematic maps were compiled by digital soil mapping methods: thickness of topsoil, genetic soil type and rate of surface erosion. High resolution digital elevation model, Earth

  4. Depositional and tectonic framework of the rift basins of Lake Baikal from multichannel seismic data

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hutchinson, D.R.; Golmshtok, A.J.; Zonenshain, L.P.; Moore, T.C.; Scholz, C.A.; Klitgord, Kim D.

    1992-01-01

    Recent multichannel seismic reflection data from Lake Baikal, located in a large, active, continental rift in central Asia, image three major stratigraphic units totalling 3.5 to 7.5 km thick in four subbasins. A major change in rift deposition and faulting between the oldest and middle-rift units probably corresponds to the change from slow to fast rifting. A brief comparison of the basins of Lake Baikal with those of the East African rift system highlights differences in structural style that can be explained by differences in age and evolution of the surrounding basement rocks. -from Authors

  5. Volcanic field elongation, vent distribution and tectonic evolution of continental rift: The Main Ethiopian Rift example

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mazzarini, Francesco; Le Corvec, Nicolas; Isola, Ilaria; Favalli, Massimiliano

    2015-04-01

    Magmatism and faulting operate in continental rifts and interact at a variety of scales, however their relationship is complex. The African rift, being the best example for both active continental rifting and magmatism, provides the ideal location to study the interplay between the two mechanisms. The Main Ethiopian Rift (MER), which connects the Afar depression in the north with the Turkana depression and Kenya Rift to the south, consists of two distinct systems of normal faults and its floor is scattered with volcanic fields formed by tens to several hundreds monogenetic, generally basaltic, small volcanoes and composite volcanoes and small calderas. The distribution of vents defines the overall shape of the volcanic field. Previous work has shown that the distribution of volcanic vents and the shape of a field are linked to its tectonic environment and its magmatic system. In order to distinguish the impact of each mechanism, we analyzed four volcanic fields located at the boundary between the central and northern MER, three of them (Debre Zeyit, Wonji and Kone) grew in the rift valley and one (Akaki) on the western rift shoulder. The elongation and shape of the fields were analyzed based on their vent distribution using the Principal Component Analysis (PCA), the Vent-to-Vent Distance (VVD), and the two dimensional symmetric Gaussian kernel density estimate methods. We extracted from these methods several parameters characterizing the spatial distribution of points (e.g., eccentricity (e), eigenvector index (evi), angular dispersion (Da)). These parameters allow to define at least three types of shape for volcanic fields: strong elongate (line and ellipse), bimodal/medium elongate (ellipse) and dispersed (circle) shapes. Applied to the natural example, these methods well differentiate each volcanic field. For example, the elongation of the field increases from shoulder to rift axis inversely to the angular dispersion. In addition, the results show that none of

  6. The mesoproterozoic midcontinent rift system, Lake Superior region, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ojakangas, R.W.; Morey, G.B.; Green, J.C.

    2001-01-01

    Exposures in the Lake Superior region, and associated geophysical evidence, show that a 2000 km-long rift system developed within the North American craton ??? 1109-1087 Ma, the age span of the most of the volcanic rocks. This system is characterized by immense volumes of mafic igneous rocks, mostly subaerial plateau basalts, generated in two major pulses largely by a hot mantle plume. A new ocean basin was nearly formed before rifting ceased, perhaps due to the remote effect of the Grenville continental collision to the east. Broad sagging/subsidence, combined with a system of axial half-grabens separated along the length of the rift by accommodation zones, provided conditions for the accumulation of as much as 20 km of volcanic rocks and as much as 10 km of post-rift clastic sediments, both along the rift axis and in basins flanking a central, post-volcanic horst. Pre-rift mature, quartzose sandstones imply little or no uplift prior to the onset of rift volcanism. Early post-rift red-bed sediments consist almost entirely of intrabasinally derived volcanic sediment deposited in alluvial fan to fluvial settings; the exception is one gray to black carbon-bearing lacustrine(?) unit. This early sedimentation phase was followed by broad crustal sagging and deposition of progressively more mature red-bed, fluvial sediments with an extra-basinal provenance. ?? 2001 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. The Mesoproterozoic Midcontinent Rift System, Lake Superior Region, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ojakangas, R. W.; Morey, G. B.; Green, J. C.

    2001-06-01

    Exposures in the Lake Superior region, and associated geophysical evidence, show that a 2000 km-long rift system developed within the North American craton ∽1109-1087 Ma, the age span of most of the volcanic rocks. This system is characterized by immense volumes of mafic igneous rocks, mostly subaerial plateau basalts, generated in two major pulses largely by a hot mantle plume. A new ocean basin was nearly formed before rifting ceased, perhaps due to the remote effect of the Grenville continental collision to the east. Broad sagging/subsidence, combined with a system of axial half-grabens separated along the length of the rift by accommodation zones, provided conditions for the accumulation of as much as 20 km of volcanic rocks and as much as 10 km of post-rift clastic sediments, both along the rift axis and in basins flanking a central, post-volcanic horst. Pre-rift mature, quartzose sandstones imply little or no uplift prior to the onset of rift volcanism. Early post-rift red-bed sediments consist almost entirely of intrabasinally derived volcanic sediment deposited in alluvial fan to fluvial settings; the exception is one gray to black carbon-bearing lacustrine(?) unit. This early sedimentation phase was followed by broad crustal sagging and deposition of progressively more mature red-bed, fluvial sediments with an extra-basinal provenance.

  8. Strain distribution in the East African Rift from GPS measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stamps, S. D.; Saria, E.; Calais, E.; Delvaux, D.; Ebinger, C.; Combrinck, L.

    2008-12-01

    Rifting of continental lithosphere is a fundamental process that controls the growth and evolution of continents and the birth of ocean basins. Most rifting models assume that stretching results from far-field lithospheric stresses from plate motions, but there is evidence that asthenospheric processes play an active role in rifting, possibly through viscous coupling and/or the added buoyancy and thermal weakening from melt intrusions. The distribution of strain during rifting is a key observable to constrain such models but is however poorly known. The East African Rift (EAR) offers a unique opportunity to quantify strain distribution along and across an active continental rift and to compare a volcanic (Eastern branch) and a non-volcanic (Western branch) segment. In 2006, we established and first surveyed a network of 35 points across Tanzania and installed one continuous station in Dar Es Salaam (TANZ), followed in 2008 by a second occupation campaign. We present a preliminary velocity field for the central part of the EAR, spanning both the Western and Eastern rift branches. We compare our results with a recent kinematic model of the EAR (Stamps et al., GRL, 2008) and discuss its significance for understanding rifting processes.

  9. Hierarchical segmentation of the Malawi Rift: The influence of inherited lithospheric heterogeneity and kinematics in the evolution of continental rifts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Laó-Dávila, Daniel A.; Al-Salmi, Haifa S.; Abdelsalam, Mohamed G.; Atekwana, Estella A.

    2015-12-01

    We used detailed analysis of Shuttle Radar Topography Mission-digital elevation model and observations from aeromagnetic data to examine the influence of inherited lithospheric heterogeneity and kinematics in the segmentation of largely amagmatic continental rifts. We focused on the Cenozoic Malawi Rift, which represents the southern extension of the Western Branch of the East African Rift System. This north trending rift traverses Precambrian and Paleozoic-Mesozoic structures of different orientations. We found that the rift can be hierarchically divided into first-order and second-order segments. In the first-order segmentation, we divided the rift into Northern, Central, and Southern sections. In its Northern Section, the rift follows Paleoproterozoic and Neoproterozoic terrains with structural grain that favored the localization of extension within well-developed border faults. The Central Section occurs within Mesoproterozoic-Neoproterozoic terrain with regional structures oblique to the rift extent. We propose that the lack of inherited lithospheric heterogeneity favoring extension localization resulted in the development of the rift in this section as a shallow graben with undeveloped border faults. In the Southern Section, Mesoproterozoic-Neoproterozoic rocks were reactivated and developed the border faults. In the second-order segmentation, only observed in the Northern Section, we divided the section into five segments that approximate four half-grabens/asymmetrical grabens with alternating polarities. The change of polarity coincides with flip-over full-grabens occurring within overlap zones associated with ~150 km long alternating border faults segments. The inherited lithospheric heterogeneity played the major role in facilitating the segmentation of the Malawi Rift during its opening resulting from extension.

  10. Continental rifting: a planetary perspective

    SciTech Connect

    Muehlberger, W.R.

    1985-01-01

    The only inner planet that has abundant evidence of regional extension, and the consequent generation of rifts in the earth. The absence of plate motion on the other inner planets limits their rifts to localized bulges or subsidence areas. The rifting of oceanic lithosphere is seldom preserved in the geological record. Thus, such rifting must be inferred via plate tectonic interpretation: if there is rifting, then there must be subduction whose results are commonly well preserved. Modern continental rifts are found in many tectonic settings: continental breakup, extension transverse to collisional stresses, or wide regions of nearly uniform extension. Recognition of these settings in older rocks becomes more difficult the farther back in geologic time you travel. Rift basin fillings typically show rapid lateral and vertical facies and thickness changes, bimodal volcanism, and distinctive rift-drift sequences. Proterozoic rifts and aulacogens are well-documented in North America; ex. Keweenawan, western margin of Labrador fold belt, Belt-Uinta and the Wopmay-Athapuscow regions. Documented Archean rifts are rare. In Quebec, the truncated margin of the Minto craton bounded on the south by a 2.8 Ga greenstone belt implies an earlier rift event. The oldest proposed rift dated at 3.0 Ga contains the Pongola Supergroup in southeastern Africa. The presence of Archean dikes demonstrates a rigid crust and andesites as old as 3.5 Ga imply plate tectonics and thus, at least, oceanic rifting.

  11. Central Appalachian Valley and Ridge Province Cenozoic igneous activity and its relation in space and time with the Late Jurassic rift-to-drift-related alkalic dikes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meyer, R.; Schultz, L.; Hendriks, B. W.; Harbor, D. J.; Connors, C. D.

    2011-12-01

    and particularly K-rich, and thus have all the characteristics of delamination magmas. This confirms that delamination seems a substantial process during the rift to drift transition. After Jurassic delamination of lithosphere below Virginia hot geochemically depleted asthenosphere was transformed into lithosphere by lithospherization. This newly formed lithosphere has later been the mantle source of the Cenozoic volcanic activity. As a result, the suggested geodynamic model is not only important to the petrology community but also to understand the local geomorphology, seismicity and presence of hot springs.

  12. Central Appalachian Valley and Ridge Province Cenozoic igneous activity and their relation in space and time with the Late Jurassic rift to drift related alkalic dikes.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meyer, R.; Schultz, L.; Hendriks, B. W. H.; Harbor, D.; van Wijk, J.; Connors, C.

    2012-04-01

    . Petrogenetically the Jurassic magmas are much more alkalic and particularly K-rich, and thus have all the characteristics as described for delamination magmas by Kay & Kay (1993). This confirms that delamination seems a substantial process during the rift to drift transition. After Jurassic delamination of lithosphere below Virginia hot asthenosphere has been transformed into lithosphere by lithospheritisation. This newly formed lithosphere has later been the mantle source of the Eocene volcanic activity. As a result, the suggested geodynamic model is not only important for the petrology community but also to understand the local geomorphology, seismicity and hot springs.

  13. Antecedent rivers and early rifting: a case study from the Plio-Pleistocene Corinth rift, Greece

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hemelsdaël, Romain; Ford, Mary; Malartre, Fabrice

    2016-04-01

    Models of early rifting present syn-rift sedimentation as the direct response to the development of normal fault systems where footwall-derived drainage supplies alluvial to lacustrine sediments into hangingwall depocentres. These models often include antecedent rivers, diverted into active depocentres and with little impact on facies distributions. However, antecedent rivers can supply a high volume of sediment from the onset of rifting. What are the interactions between major antecedent rivers and a growing normal fault system? What are the implications for alluvial stratigraphy and facies distributions in early rifts? These questions are investigated by studying a Plio-Pleistocene fluvial succession on the southern margin of the Corinth rift (Greece). In the northern Peloponnese, early syn-rift deposits are preserved in a series of uplifted E-W normal fault blocks (10-15 km long, 3-7 km wide). Detailed sedimentary logging and high resolution mapping of the syn-rift succession (400 to 1300 m thick) define the architecture of the early rift alluvial system. Magnetostratigraphy and biostratigraphic markers are used to date and correlate the fluvial succession within and between fault blocks. The age of the succession is between 4.0 and 1.8 Ma. We present a new tectonostratigraphic model for early rift basins based on our reconstructions. The early rift depositional system was established across a series of narrow normal fault blocks. Palaeocurrent data show that the alluvial basin was supplied by one major sediment entry point. A low sinuosity braided river system flowed over 15 to 30 km to the NE. Facies evolved downstream from coarse conglomerates to fined-grained fluvial deposits. Other minor sediment entry points supply linked and isolated depocentres. The main river system terminated eastward where it built stacked small deltas into a shallow lake (5 to 15 m deep) that occupied the central Corinth rift. The main fluvial axis remained constant and controlled

  14. Closing of the Midcontinent-Rift - a far-field effect on Grenvillian compression

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cannon, W.F.

    1994-01-01

    The Midcontinent rift formed in the Laurentian supercontinent between 1109 and 1094 Ma. Soon after rifting, stresses changed from extensional to compressional, and the central graben of the rift was partly inverted by thrusting on original extensional faults. Thrusting culminated at about 1060 Ma but may have begun as early as 1080 Ma. On the southwest-trending arm of the rift, the crust was shortened about 30km; on the southeast-trending arm, strike-slip motion was dominant. The rift developed adjacent to the tectonically active Grenville province, and its rapid evolution from an extensional to a compressional feature at c1080 Ma was coincident with renewal of northwest-directed thrusting in the Grenville, probably caused by continent-continent collision. A zone of weak lithosphere created by rifting became the locus for deformation within the otherwise strong continental lithosphere. Stresses transmitted from the Grenville province utilized this weak zone to close and invert the rift. -Author

  15. Mesozoic Rifting in the German North Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lutz, R.; Jähne, F.; Arfai, J.

    2013-12-01

    The Central Graben is the southernmost expressions of the Mesozoic North Sea rift system that includes the Viking Graben, Moray Firth-Witch Ground grabens and the Horda-Egersund half graben. In the southern North Sea the Central Graben extends across the Dutch and the German exclusive economic zones. The structure of the Central Graben in German territorial waters was mapped in great detail in 2D and 3D seismic data and the stratigraphy has been constraint by borehole data. We provide a detailed review of the rifting activity in the German North Sea sector both in time and space and the link between rifting and salt movement. Major rifting activity started in the Central Graben during the Late Triassic and peaked during the Late Jurassic when extensive rift grabens formed, further influenced by halokinetic movements. First subsidence in the Central Graben area appears in the Early Triassic. This is documented by thickness variations in the sedimentary strata from the Triassic to the Jurassic. Remarkably thick sediments were deposited during the Late Triassic along the eastern border fault of the Central Graben and in the Late Jurassic sediments accumulated along graben-wide extensional faults and in rim-synclines of salt-structures. A basin inversion commenced in the Late Cretaceous resulting in an erosion of wide portions of Lower Cretaceous rocks or even complete removal in some parts. The area to the east of the Central Graben faced a completely different evolution. In this area major rifting activity initiated already in the Early to Middle Triassic. This is evident from huge packages of Middle Buntsandstein to Muschelkalk (Middle Triassic) sediments in the Horn Graben. Jurassic doming, forming the Mid-North Sea High, resulted in almost complete erosion of Lower and Middle Jurassic sediments in the central German North Sea. Sedimentation continued during the Early and Late Cretaceous. The Glückstadt Graben, which is a structure located farther east has a

  16. Halocinèse précoce associée au rifting jurassique dans l'Atlas central de Tunisie (région de Majoura El Hfay)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tanfous Amri, Dorra; Bédir, Mourad; Soussi, Mohamed; Azaiez, Hajer; Zitouni, Lahoussine; Hédi Inoubli, M.; Ben Boubaker, Kamel

    2005-05-01

    Seismic and sequence stratigraphy analyses, petroleum-well control and surface data studies of the Majoura-El Hfay region in the Central Atlas of Tunisia had led to identify and calibrate Jurassic seismic horizons. Seismic stratigraphic sections, seismic tectonics analyses, isochron and isopach mapping of Jurassic sequences show a differentiated structuring of platform and depocentre blocks limited by deep-seated NE-SW, north-south east-west and NW-SE faults intruded by Upper Triassic salt. The early salt migration seems to have started by the platform fracturing during the Lower Liassic rifting event. These movements are fossilized by thickness variations of Jurassic horizons, aggrading and retrograding onlap and toplap structures between subsiding rim-syncline gutters and high platform flanks intruded by salt pillows and domes. The salt migration is also attested by Middle and Upper Jurassic space depocentre migrations. Around the Majoura-El Hfay study blocks bounded by master faults, Triassic salt have pierced the Cretaceous and Tertiary sedimentary cover in a salt diapir extrusion and salt wall structures. To cite this article: D. Tanfous Amri et al., C. R. Geoscience 337 (2005).

  17. Rift Valley Fever Review

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a disease of animals and humans that occurs in Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. A Phlebovirus in the family Bunyaviridae causes the disease that is transmitted by mosquitoes. Epidemics occur during years of unusually heavy rainfall that assessment models are being develo...

  18. Continental rifting - Progress and outlook

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Baker, B. H.; Morgan, P.

    1981-01-01

    It is noted that in spite of the flood of new data on continental rifts in the last 15 years, there is little consensus about the basic mechanisms and causes of rifting. The remarkable similarities in rift cross sections (shown in a figure), are considered to suggest that the anomalous lithospheric structure of rifts is more dependent on lithosphere properties than the mode of rifting. It is thought that there is a spectrum of rifting processes for which two fundamental mechanisms can be postulated: an active mechanism, whereby thermal energy is transmitted into the lithosphere from the underlying asthenosphere, and a passive mechanism by which mechanical energy is transmitted laterally through the lithosphere as a consequence of plate interactions at a distance. In order to permit the concept of the two fundamentally different mechanisms to be tested, a tentative classification is proposed that divides rifts into two basic categories: active rifting and passive rifting. Here, the magnitude of active rifting will depend on the rate at which lithosphere moves over the thermal source, with rifts being restricted to stationary or slow-moving plates.

  19. Seismic tomography of continental rifts revisited: from relative to absolute heterogeneities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Achauer, Ulrich; Masson, Frédéric

    2002-11-01

    Tomographic images for four major continental rift zones, namely the southern Rhine Graben (SRG, Germany/France), the Gregory rift (Kenya) which is the central part of the East African rift system, the Rio Grande rift (RGR) in the United States and the Lake Baikal rift zone (LBR) in Russia have been revisited by calculating and comparing absolute velocity models. The four rifts exhibit strong structural differences in the uppermost mantle down to more than 300-km depth, suggesting major differences in their geodynamic evolution albeit their similarity in age and similar surface expression. The comparative analysis suggests that tomographic images of rift zones can be used to characterize continental rifts, once the corrections to obtain absolute velocities have been carried out. Our results suggest that while the Kenya and the Rio Grande rift may be considered active with large upwelling plumes being the main controlling factor in the evolution, the southern Rhine Graben and the Lake Baikal rift are more likely passive rifts, where complex regional stress fields and inherited structures play the governing role in the evolution.

  20. Intracontinental rift comparisons: Baikal and Rio Grande Rift Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lipman, P. W.; Logatchev, N. A.; Zorin, Y. A.; Chapman, C. E.; Kovalenko, V.; Morgan, P.

    Both the Baikal rift in Siberia and the Rio Grande rift in New Mexico, Colorado and Texas are major intracontinental extensional structures of Cenozoic age that affect regions about 1500 km long and several hundred km wide (Figures 1, 2). In the summer of 1988 these rifts were visited by study groups of U.S. and Soviet geoscientists during cooperative field workshops sponsored by the Soviet Academy of Sciences, U.S. National Academy of Sciences, and U.S. Geological Survey.In the Rio Grande region, we spent 2 weeks examining rift features between El Paso, Tex., and Denver, Colo. Particular emphasis was on the sedimentary record of rift evolution, widespread volcanic activity from inception of rifting to the present, geophysical expression of rift features, and relations between rifting and the larger-scale evolution of the North American Cordillera. In the Baikal region, which presents formidable logistic problems for a workshop, we travelled by bus, truck, helicopter, and ship to examine young seismotectonic features, rift-related basalt, and bounding structures of the Siberian craton that influenced rift development (Figure 3).

  1. North America's Midcontinent Rift: when Rift MET Lip

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stein, C. A.; Stein, S. A.; Kley, J.; Keller, G. R., Jr.; Bollmann, T. A.; Wolin, E.; Zhang, H.; Frederiksen, A. W.; Ola, K.; Wysession, M. E.; Wiens, D.; Alequabi, G.; Waite, G. P.; Blavascunas, E.; Engelmann, C. A.; Flesch, L. M.; Rooney, T. O.; Moucha, R.; Brown, E.

    2015-12-01

    Rifts are segmented linear depressions, filled with sedimentary and igneous rocks, that form by extension and often evolve into plate boundaries. Flood basalts, a class of Large Igneous Provinces (LIPs), are broad regions of extensive volcanism due to sublithospheric processes. Typical rifts are not filled with flood basalts, and typical flood basalts are not associated with significant crustal extension and faulting. North America's Midcontinent Rift (MCR) is an unusual combination. Its 3000-km length formed as part of the 1.1 Ga rifting of Amazonia (Precambrian NE South America) from Laurentia (Precambrian North America) and became inactive once seafloor spreading was established, but contains an enormous volume of igneous rocks. MCR volcanics are significantly thicker than other flood basalts, due to deposition in a narrow rift rather than a broad region, giving a rift geometry but a LIP's magma volume. Structural modeling of seismic reflection data shows an initial rift phase where flood basalts filled a fault-controlled extending basin, and a postrift phase where volcanics and sediments were deposited in a thermally subsiding basin without associated faulting. The crust thinned during rifting and rethickened during the postrift phase and later compression, yielding the present thicker crust. The coincidence of a rift and LIP yielded the world's largest deposit of native copper. This combination arose when a new rift associated with continental breakup interacted with a mantle plume or anomalously hot or fertile upper mantle. Integration of diverse data types and models will give insight into questions including how the magma source was related to the rifting, how their interaction operated over a long period of rapid plate motion, why the lithospheric mantle below the MCR differs only slightly from its surroundings, how and why extension, volcanism, and compression varied along the rift arms, and how successful seafloor spreading ended the rift phase. Papers

  2. Evidence of contemporary and ancient excess fluid pressure in the New Madrid seismic zone of the Reelfoot Rift, central United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McKeown, F.A.; Diehl, S.

    1994-01-01

    In the winter of 1811-12, three of the largest historic earthquakes in the United States occurred near New Madrid, Missouri. Seismicity continues to the present day throughout a tightly clustered pattern of epicenters centered on the bootheel of Missouri, including parts of northeastern Arkansas, northwestern Tennessee, western Kentucky, and southern Illinois. In 1990, the New Madrid seismic zone/central United States became the first seismically active region east of the Rocky Mountains to be designated a priority research area within the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP). This professional paper is a collection of papers, some published separately, presenting results of the newly intensified research program in this area. Major components of this research program include tectonic framework studies, seismicity and deformation monitoring and modeling, improved seismic hazard and risk assessments, and cooperative hazard mitigation studies.

  3. Numerical modeling of continental rifting: Implications for the East African Rift system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koptev, Alexander; Burov, Evgueni; Calais, Eric; Leroy, Sylvie; Gerya, Taras; Guillou-Frottier, Laurent; Cloetingh, Sierd

    2016-04-01

    The East African Rift system (EARS) provides a unique system with juxtaposition of two contrasting yet simultaneously formed rift branches, the eastern, magma-rich, and the western, magma-poor, on either side of the old thick Tanzanian craton embedded into younger lithosphere. Here we take advantage of the improvements in our understanding of deep structures, geological evolution and recent kinematics, together with new cutting edge numerical modeling techniques to design a three-dimensional ultra-high resolution viscous plastic thermo-mechanical numerical model that accounts for thermo-rheological structure of the lithosphere and hence captures the essential geophysical features of the central EARS. Based on our experiments, we show that in case of the mantle plume seeded slightly to the northeast of the craton center, the ascending plume material is deflected by the cratonic keel and preferentially channeled along the eastern side of the craton, leading to formation of a large rift zone characterized by important magmatic activity with substantial amounts of melts derived from mantle plume material. This model is in good agreement with the observations in the EARS, as it reproduces the magmatic eastern branch and at the same time, anticlockwise rotation of the craton. However, this experiment does not reproduce the observed strain localization along the western margin of the cratonic bloc. To explain the formation of contrasting magmatic and amagmatic rift branches initiating simultaneously on either side of a non-deforming block as observed in the central EARS, we experimentally explored several scenarios of which three can be retained as specifically pertaining to the EARS: (1) The most trivial first scenario assumes rheologically weak vertical interface simulating the suture zone observed in the geological structure along the western border of the craton; (2) The second scenario involves a second smaller plume initially shifted in SW direction; (3) Finally, a

  4. (40)Ar/(39)Ar dating, paleomagnetism, and tephrochemistry of Pliocene strata of the hominid-bearing Woranso-Mille area, west-central Afar Rift, Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Deino, Alan L; Scott, Gary R; Saylor, Beverly; Alene, Mulugeta; Angelini, Joshua D; Haile-Selassie, Yohannes

    2010-02-01

    (40)Ar/(39)Ar dating of tuffs and mafic lavas, tephra geochemistry, and paleomagnetic reversal stratigraphy have been used to establish the chronostratigraphy of the Pliocene hominid-bearing fossiliferous succession at Woranso-Mille, a paleontological study area in the western part of the central Afar region of Ethiopia. The succession in the northwestern part of the study area ranges in (40)Ar/(39)Ar age from 3.82-3.570 Ma, encompassed by paleomagnetic subchron C2Ar (4.187-3.596 Ma). One of the major tuff units, locally named the Kilaytoli tuff, is correlative on the basis of age and geochemistry to the Lokochot Tuff of the Turkana Basin. A hominid partial skeleton (KSD-VP-1) was found in strata whose precise stratigraphic position and age is still under investigation, but is believed to correspond to the later part of this interval. Woranso-Mille fills a significant gap in the fossil record of northeastern Africa at the time of the lower to middle Pliocene transition, when many extant species lineages of African fauna were established. PMID:20034653

  5. Titanite and apatite fission track analyses on basement rocks of central-southern Madagascar: constraints on exhumation and denudation rates along the eastern rift shoulder of the Morondava basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Emmel, B.; Jacobs, J.; Razakamanana, T.

    2004-03-01

    Titanite and apatite fission-track (FT) thermochronology from basement rocks in central-southern Madagascar reveals a protracted post Late Neoproterozoic/Early Cambrian history of extensional tectonism, denudation and sedimentation. Titanite FT ages range between 379 ± 38 and 276 ± 17 Ma and apatite FT ages vary between 379 ± 19 and 150 ± 8 Ma. Combined titanite and apatite FT data from the western palaeo margin of Madagascar suggest denudation rates of ˜200-100 mMa -1 during Carboniferous times. The Late Neoproterozoic/Early Cambrian Ejeda shear zone was probably reactivated during this time. In contrast, for the same period denudation rates inland are ˜110-25 mMa -1. During Permo-Triassic rifting, areas that previously underwent fast denudation were buried by sedimentary cover up to ˜4.5 km. At this time, a graben developed along the transcontinental Bongolava-Ranotsara shear zone (BRSZ). Graben faults are exposed at the northeastern graben shoulder. Identical titanite and apatite FT ages close to the BRSZ indicate rapid cooling associated with fluid circulation during Early Permian times. The initial Gondwana break-up during Middle Jurassic times and the drift of Madagascar along the Davie transform fault did not significantly influence the FT data and had only minor geomorphic impact in the study area. Only the far southwestern part of the island is characterised by a higher degree of denudation (max. ˜3.5 km) during Early Jurassic times. Early Cretaceous and Cenozoic volcanic activity affected the apatite FT data from southern Madagascar. Modelled time-temperature ( T- t) paths argue for a reheating of samples from southern Madagascar to temperatures of ˜60-80 °C during the times of magmatism, before final cooling to surface temperatures.

  6. Crustal Structure of the Ethiopian Rift and Adjacent Plateaus: Results of new integrated interpretation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tadesse, K.; Keller, G. R.

    2006-12-01

    The Ethiopian rift is the large part of the East African Rift system, which represents an incipient divergent plate boundary. This important structure provides excellent opportunities to study the transition from continental to oceanic. As a result, geophysical data are becoming increasingly available but some results are contradictory. We used a newly enhanced gravity database and seismic information to produce an integrated interpretation of the crustal structure beneath the Ethiopian rift and the adjacent plateaus. Wide regions have been covered to assess the regional structures including the Kenyan and Ethiopian rifts and the area covered by the Ethiopian flood basalt. Broad negative Bouguer gravity anomalies are delineated over the Ethiopian Plateaus and the Kenyan dome. Residual gravity anomalies, which parallel the major border faults clearly highlight the segregation between the plateaus and the rift valleys. Results of other filtering techniques have clearly revealed individual volcanic centers within the rift valleys. Positive gravity anomalies outside the rift valleys may be associated with older structures, shield volcanoes, or structures that are related to the initiation and propagation of rifting. A long axial profile from the central part of Kenya to the Afar triple junction has been modeled to investigate along-axis crustal variation of the East African rift system, with emphasis on the Ethiopian rift. This modeling has been constrained using seismic refraction data from the Ethiopian Afar Geoscientific Lithospheric Experiment (EAGLE) and Kenya Rift International Seismic Project (KRISP) results. We are able to see a thin crust (~26 km) in the Afar triangle with a gradual thickening (~40 km) southwards towards the Main Central Ethiopian rift (MER). The crust thickness decreases towards Turkana rift (~22 km), and increases again towards the central eastern rift section in Kenya. Our profile model across the MER has revealed that the eastern rift

  7. East African Rift Valley, Kenya

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1990-01-01

    This rare, cloud free view of the East African Rift Valley, Kenya (1.5N, 35.5E) shows a clear view of the Turkwell River Valley, an offshoot of the African REift System. The East African Rift is part of a vast plate fracture which extends from southern Turkey, through the Red Sea, East Africa and into Mozambique. Dark green patches of forests are seen along the rift margin and tea plantations occupy the cooler higher ground.

  8. Early Jurassic paleopoles from the Hartford continental rift basin (eastern North America): Was an abrupt change in polar wander associated with the Central Atlantic Magmatic Province?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kent, D. V.; Olsen, P. E.

    2007-12-01

    The recent recognition of what may be the largest igneous province on Earth, the ~200 Ma Central Atlantic magmatic province (CAMP), with its close temporal proximity to major biotic turnover at the Triassic/Jurassic boundary, adds impetus for seeking confirmation of possibly related geodynamic phenomena. For example, CAMP emplacement seems to coincide temporally with an abrupt change in North American apparent polar wander at the so-called J1 cusp, which has been suggested to reflect a major plate reorganization or an episode of true polar wander. However, early Jurassic paleopoles from the Moenave and Wingate Formations from the Colorado Plateau that virtually define the J1 cusp have few reliable counterparts from elsewhere in North America. The thick section of cyclical Lower Jurassic continental sediments with interbedded CAMP lava flows in the Hartford basin of Connecticut and Massachusetts provides an opportunity to test the reality of the J1 cusp. We collected about 400 oriented samples distributed over 80 outcrop sites that represent a ~2500 meter-thick composite section of the Shuttle Meadow and East Berlin sedimentary formations, which are interbedded with CAMP lava units, and the lower Portland Formation, which consists of cyclical lacustrine to fluvial sediments of Early Jurassic age that conformably overlie the CAMP extrusive zone in the Hartford basin. Normal and reverse polarity ChRM directions define a coherent magnetostratigraphy and are supported by a reversal test and a positive fold test. The distribution of ChRM direction from the sediments is flattened and the mean is significantly shallower than from the coeval CAMP lavas. E/I analysis of the Hartford sedimentary ChRM data produces a result consistent with the geomagnetic field model at a mean flattening factor of 0.54; the corrected mean direction is steeper and not significantly different from the mean inclination of the Newark and Hartford CAMP volcanic units.

  9. Alkaline series related to Early-Middle Miocene intra-continental rifting in a collision zone: An example from Polatlı, Central Anatolia, Turkey

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Temel, Abidin; Yürür, Tekin; Alıcı, Pınar; Varol, Elif; Gourgaud, Alain; Bellon, Hervé; Demirbağ, Hünkar

    2010-06-01

    A large volcanic area (˜7600 km 2), the Galatean Volcanic Province (GVP), developed in northwest Central Anatolia during the Miocene along the Neo-Tethys Ocean suture zone possibly by post-collisional processes. The GVP mainly comprises 20-14 My old acid to intermediate volcanites with a geochemical signature indicating a mantle source modified by earlier (Late Cretaceous) subduction-related events. 100 km south of the GVP, near Polatlı, Ankara, basaltic rocks that cover large areas are intercalated with the Miocene deposits of the Beypazarı basin, an intra-continental subsidence zone at the southwest of the GVP. Field observations, geochemistry and K-Ar age dating of the Polatlı volcanites show that they are Early (19.9 Ma) to mid (14.1 Ma) Miocene in age, covering an area as large as 215 km 2. Variations in lava thickness and the thickness of the underlying silicified/baked zones suggest that the basaltic lavas erupted from a southern source, possibly from the Eskişehir fault zone, and flowed northwards. Most Polatlı samples have chemical compositions that indicate derivation from a mantle source with crustal contamination during ascent. They do not display any characteristic to suggest a subductional component. Although the GVP and Polatlı lavas formed close in time and space, they were derived from different mantle sources. Considering the positions of these two magmatic regions with regard to the Tethyan suture zone, we propose that the mantle beneath the GVP and near the suture zone memorised the earlier subduction while the mantle beneath Polatlı that is located about 100 km further from the suture zone remained apparently unchanged. After a significant volume of magma was consumed in the GVP, a later (˜10 My) and last activity (Güvem activity) has produced quantitatively much less basaltic rocks where this subductional signature seems to completely disappear. Considering that the western Anatolian crust is proposed to undergo extension since the

  10. The origin and geologic evolution of the East Continent Rift Basin

    SciTech Connect

    Drahovzal, J.A. . Kentucky Geological Survey)

    1992-01-01

    The East Continent Rift Basin (ECRB) is a newly recognized, dominantly sedimentary-volcanic Proterozoic rift basin that apparently represents the southern extension of the Keweenawan Midcontinent Rift. The ECRB extends from central Michigan at least as far south as south-central Kentucky. The inferred age of the rift fill is approximately 1,000 Ma. Evidence supporting a rift origin for the ECRB includes: interbedding of continental flood basalts and felsic volcanics with siliciclastics; sedimentary fill consisting of distal, arid-climate alluvial fan sediments that lack metamorphic lithologies; close proximity and similar lithologic succession to the Keweenawan rift-fill rocks of the Michigan Basin; and inferred marginal block faulting of Granite-Rhyolite Province rocks near the western edge of the ECRB. ECRB evolution is interpreted as follows: (1) formation of Granite-Rhyolite Province rocks (1,500--1,340 Ma); (2) Keweenawan crustal extension and rifting with development of central mafic complexes, emplacement of volcanic rocks, and deposition of siliciclastic fill from eroded marginal Granite-Rhyolite Province tilted fault blocks (ca 1,000 Ma); (3) overthrusting of the Grenville allochthon and associated foreland thrusting and folding of the rift sequence rocks together with deposition of foreland basin sediments (975---890 Ma); (4) Late Proterozoic erosional removal of the foreland basin sediments and interpreted wrench faulting along the Grenville Front (post-975 to pre-570 Ma); and (5) tectonic inversion, with the ECRB area remaining relatively high during major cambrian subsidence in central Kentucky (590--510 Ma).

  11. The role of inherited crustal structures and magmatism in the development of rift segments: Insights from the Kivu basin, western branch of the East African Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smets, Benoît; Delvaux, Damien; Ross, Kelly Ann; Poppe, Sam; Kervyn, Matthieu; d'Oreye, Nicolas; Kervyn, François

    2016-06-01

    The study of rift basin's morphology can provide good insights into geological features influencing the development of rift valleys and the distribution of volcanism. The Kivu rift segment represents the central section of the western branch of the East African Rift and displays morphological characteristics contrasting with other rift segments. Differences and contradictions between several structural maps of the Kivu rift make it difficult to interpret the local geodynamic setting. In the present work, we use topographic and bathymetric data to map active fault networks and study the geomorphology of the Kivu basin. This relief-based fault lineament mapping appears as a good complement for field mapping or mapping using seismic reflection profiles. Results suggest that rifting reactivated NE-SW oriented structures probably related to the Precambrian basement, creating transfer zones and influencing the location and distribution of volcanism. Both volcanic provinces, north and south of the Kivu basin, extend into Lake Kivu and are connected to each other with a series of eruptive vents along the western rift escarpment. The complex morphology of this rift basin, characterized by a double synthetic half-graben structure, might result from the combined action of normal faulting, magmatic underplating, volcanism and erosion processes.

  12. Exploring the contrasts between fast and slow rifting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morgan, Jason P.; de Monserrat, Albert; White, Lloyd; Hall, Robert

    2016-04-01

    Researchers are now finding that extension sometimes occurs at rates much faster than the mean rates observed in the development of passive margins. Examples of rapid and ultra-rapid extension are found in several locations in Eastern Indonesia. This includes in northern and central Sulawesi as well as in eastern- and westernmost New Guinea. The periods of extension are associated with sedimentary basin growth as well as phases of crustal melting and rapid uplift. This is recorded through seismic imagery of basins offshore Sulawesi and New Guinea as well as through new field studies of the onshore geology in these regions. A growing body of new geochronological and biostratigraphic data provide some control on the rates of processes, indicating that rates of extension are typically at least twice as fast and potentially an order of magnitude faster than the fastest rates applied for more commonly studied rift settings (e.g. Atlantic opening, East African Rift, Australia-Antarctica opening). Here we explore a suite of experiments more appropriate for rifting episodes in Eastern Indonesia, and compare the evolution of these 'fast' (20-100 mm/year full rate) rifting models to experiments with the same crustal geometries rifting at ~5-20 mm/year. In particular, we explore to what depths hot lower crust and mantle can be exhumed by fast rifting, and whether we can produce the p-T-t paths implied by recent onshore geological studies.

  13. Granular mechanics and rifting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reber, Jacqueline E.; Hayman, Nicholas W.; Lavier, Luc L.

    2013-04-01

    Numerical models have proved useful in the interpretation of seismic-scale images of rifted margins. In an effort to both test and further illuminate predictions of numerical models, workers have made some strides using map-scale field relations, microstructures, and strain analyses. Yet, fundamental predictions of modeling and tectonic restorations are not able to capture critical observations. For example, many models and interpretations call on continuous faults with restorable kinematic histories. In contrast, s-reflectors and other interpreted shear fabrics in the middle crust tend to be discontinuous and non-planar across a margin. Additionally, most rift-evolution models and interpretations call on end-member ductile flow laws over a range of mechanical and thermal conditions. In contrast, field observations have found that a range of "brittle" fault rocks (e.g., cataclasites and breccias) form in the deeper crust. Similarly, upper crustal materials in deep basins and fault zones can deform through both distributed and localized deformation. Altogether, there appears to be reason to bring a new perspective to aspects of the structural evolution of rifted margins. A granular mechanics approach to crustal deformation studies has several important strengths. Granular materials efficiently localize shear and exhibit a range of stick-slip behaviors, including quasi-viscous rheological responses. These behaviors emerge in discrete element models, analog-materials experiments, and natural and engineered systems regardless of the specific micromechanical flow law. Yet, strictly speaking, granular deformation occurs via failure of frictional contacts between elastic grains. Here, we explore how to relate granular-mechanics models to mesoscale (outcrop) structural evolution, in turn providing insight into basin- and margin- scale evolution. At this stage we are focusing on analog-materials experiments and micro-to-mesoscale observations linking theoretical predictions

  14. An integrated geophysical study of the northern Kenya rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mariita, Nicolas O.; Keller, G. Randy

    2007-06-01

    The Kenyan part of the East African rift is among the most studied rift zones in the world. It is characterized by: (1) a classic rift valley, (2) sheer escarpments along the faulted borders of the rift valley, (3) voluminous volcanics that flowed from faults and fissures along the rift, and (4) axial and flank volcanoes where magma flow was most intense. In northern Kenya, the rift faults formed in an area where the lithosphere was weakened and stretched by Cretaceous-Paleogene extension, and in central and southern Kenya, it formed along old zones of weakness at the contact between the Archean Tanzania craton and the Proterozoic Mozambique orogenic belt. Recent geophysical investigations focused on the tectonic evolution of the East African rift and on exploration for geothermal energy in the southern portion of the Kenyan rift provide considerable information and insight on the structure and evolution of the lithosphere. In the north, a variety of other data exist. However, the lack of an integrated regional analysis of these data was the motivation for this study. Our study began with the collection and compilation of gravity data, and then we used the seismic refraction results from the Kenya Rift International Seismic Project (KRISP), published seismic reflection data, aeromagnetic data, and geologic and drilling data as constraints in the construction of integrated gravity models. These models and gravity anomaly maps provide insight on spatial variations in crustal thickness and upper mantle structure. In addition, they show the distribution of basins and help characterize the distribution of magmatism along the axis of the northern sector of the rift. Our main observations are the following: (1) the region of thinning and anomalous mantle widens northward in agreement with previous studies showing that the crust thins from about 35 km in the south to 20 km in the north; (2) as observed in the south, gravity highs observed along the axis are due to mafic

  15. Mid-lithospheric Discontinuity Beneath the Malawi Rift, Deduced from Gravity Studies and its Relation to the Rifting Process.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Njinju, E. A.; Atekwana, E. A.; Mickus, K. L.; Abdelsalam, M. G.; Atekwana, E. A.; Laó-Dávila, D. A.

    2015-12-01

    The World Gravity Map satellite gravity data were used to investigate the lithospheric structure beneath the Cenozoic-age Malawi Rift which forms the southern extension of the Western Branch of the East African Rift System. An analysis of the data using two-dimensional (2D) power spectrum methods indicates the two distinctive discontinuities at depths of 31‒44 km and 64‒124 km as defined by the two steepest slopes of the power spectrum curves. The shallower discontinuity corresponds to the crust-mantle boundary (Moho) and compares well with Moho depth determined from passive seismic studies. To understand the source of the deeper discontinuity, we applied the 2D power spectrum analysis to other rift segments of the Western Branch as well as regions with stable continental lithospheres where the lithospheric structure is well constrained through passive seismic studies. We found that the deeper discontinuity corresponds to a mid-lithospheric discontinuity (MLD), which is known to exist globally at depths between 60‒150 km and as determined by passive seismic studies. Our results show that beneath the Malawi Rift, there is no pattern of N-S elongated crustal thinning following the surface expression of the Malawi Rift. With the exception of a north-central region of crustal thinning (< 35 km), most of the southern part of the rift is underlain by thick crust (~40‒44 km). Different from the Moho, the MLD is shallower beneath the axis of the Malawi Rift forming a N-S trending zone with depths of 64‒80 km, showing a broad and gentle topography. We interpret the MLD as representing a sharp density contrast resulting from metasomatized lithosphere due to lateral migration along mobile belts of hot mantle melt or fluids from a distant plume and not from an ascending asthenosphere. These fluids weaken the lithosphere enhancing rift nucleation. The availability of satellite gravity worldwide makes gravity a promising technique for determining the MLD globally.

  16. The South China sea margins: Implications for rifting contrasts

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hayes, D.E.; Nissen, S.S.

    2005-01-01

    Implications regarding spatially complex continental rifting, crustal extension, and the subsequent evolution to seafloor spreading are re-examined for the northern and southern-rifted margins of the South China Sea. Previous seismic studies have shown dramatic differences in the present-day crustal thicknesses as the manifestations of the strain experienced during the rifting of the margin of south China. Although the total crustal extension is presumed to be the same along the margin and adjacent ocean basin, the amount of continental crustal extension that occurred is much less along the east and central segments of the margin than along the western segment. This difference was accommodated by the early formation of oceanic crust (creating the present-day South China Sea basin) adjacent to the eastern margin segment while continued extension of continental crust was sustained to the west. Using the observed cross-sectional areas of extended continental crust derived from deep penetration seismics, two end-member models of varying rift zone widths and varying initial crustal thicknesses are qualitatively examined for three transects. Each model implies a time difference in the initiation of seafloor spreading inferred for different segments along the margin. The two models examined predict that the oceanic crust of the South China Sea basin toward the west did not begin forming until sometime between 6-12 my after its initial formation (???32 Ma) toward the east. These results are compatible with crustal age interpretations of marine magnetic anomalies. Assuming rifting symmetry with conjugate margin segments now residing along the southern portions of the South China Sea basin implies that the total width of the zone of rifting in the west was greater than in the east by about a factor of two. We suggest the most likely causes of the rifting differences were east-west variations in the rheology of the pre-rift crust and associated east-west variations in the

  17. The Midcontinent rift system in Kansas

    SciTech Connect

    Berendsen, P. . Kansas Geological Survey)

    1993-03-01

    A sequence of rift-related mafic volcanic rocks, volcanoclastic-, and clastic sedimentary rocks are recognized in cuttings and cores from about seventy wells in Kansas. The age (1,097.5 Ma) for gabbro in the Poersch [number sign]1 well in northern Kansas, as well as the general petrographic characteristics of the sedimentary rocks throughout the area favors a correlation with established Keweenawan stratigraphy in the Lake Superior region. Rift-related northeast-trending faults and older northwest-trending faults divide the area up into a number of orthogonal fault blocks or basins. Depending upon the tectonic history of the individual basin all or part of the Keweenawan section may be preserved. It is believed that large amounts of Keweenawan clastic sedimentary rock were eroded from the nemaha uplift east of the central graben of the rift and transported in an easterly direction. Prior to deposition of Paleozoic rocks the area was peneplaned. Correlation of various stratigraphic units over any distance is complicated by tectonic activity occurring at several times during the Precambrian and Paleozoic. Stratabound or stratiform deposits can occur both in the Precambrian as well as the overlying Paleozoic rocks. The possibility of massive sulfides to occur in the mafic intrusive rocks must not be excluded. In the core from the Poersch [number sign]1 well sulfides are recognized in gabbroic sills or dikes. Dark, fissile shale, similar to the Nonesuch Shale in the [number sign]1--4 Finn well averages 0.75% organic carbon. Thermal maturation within the rift probably ranges from within the oil window to over maturity.

  18. Kinematics of Rift-Parallel Deformation Along the Rukwa Rift, Western Branch, and Main Ethiopian Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stamps, D.; Koehn, D.; Burke, K. C.; d'Oreye, N.; Saria, E.; Xu, R.

    2013-12-01

    The East African Rift System spans N-S ~5000 km and currently experiences E-W extension. Previous kinematic studies of the EARS delineated 3 relatively rigid sub-plates (Victoria, Rovuma, and Lwandle) between the Nubian and Somalian plates. GPS observations of these block interiors confirm the rigid plate model, but we also detect a systematic along-rift deformation pattern at GPS stations located within rift zones bounding the western Victoria block and continuing north between the Nubian and Somalian plates. Here we present a kinematic model of present-day rift-parallel deformation along the Western branch, Rukwa Rift, and Main Ethiopian Rift constrained by a new GPS solution, earthquake slip vectors, and mapped active fault structures. We test the roles of block rotation, elastic deformation, and anelastic deformation by varying block geometry, fault slip distribution parameters, estimating permanent strain rate, and scoring each model with GPS observations. We also explore how the present-day deformation patterns relate to longer-term paleostress indicators. Observations of slickensides and offsets in seismic reflection profiles in the northern Western branch (Albertine rift) indicate a change from ~NNE trending normal faulting to include strike-slip motion within the past 7 My that may be related to previously studied stress changes in the Turkana rift. Preliminary results from the kinematic modeling demonstrate simple elastic strain accumulation on major border faults cannot explain an observed systematic northward component in GPS velocities relative to the Victoria block and the Nubian plate.

  19. A refinement of the chronology of rift-related faulting in the Broadly Rifted Zone, southern Ethiopia, through apatite fission-track analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balestrieri, Maria Laura; Bonini, Marco; Corti, Giacomo; Sani, Federico; Philippon, Melody

    2016-03-01

    To reconstruct the timing of rift inception in the Broadly Rifted Zone in southern Ethiopia, we applied the fission-track method to basement rocks collected along the scarp of the main normal faults bounding (i) the Amaro Horst in the southern Main Ethiopian Rift and (ii) the Beto Basin in the Gofa Province. At the Amaro Horst, a vertical traverse along the major eastern scarp yielded pre-rift ages ranging between 121.4 ± 15.3 Ma and 69.5 ± 7.2 Ma, similarly to two other samples, one from the western scarp and one at the southern termination of the horst (103.4 ± 24.5 Ma and 65.5 ± 4.2 Ma, respectively). More interestingly, a second traverse at the Amaro northeastern terminus released rift-related ages spanning between 12.3 ± 2.7 and 6.8 ± 0.7 Ma. In the Beto Basin, the ages determined along the base of the main (northwestern) fault scarp vary between 22.8 ± 3.3 Ma and 7.0 ± 0.7 Ma. We ascertain through thermal modeling that rift-related exhumation along the northwestern fault scarp of the Beto Basin started at 12 ± 2 Ma while in the eastern margin of the Amaro Horst faulting took place later than 10 Ma, possibly at about 8 Ma. These results suggest a reconsideration of previous models on timing of rift activation in the different sectors of the Ethiopian Rift. Extensional basin formation initiated more or less contemporaneously in the Gofa Province (~ 12 Ma) and Northern Main Ethiopian Rift (~ 10-12 Ma) at the time of a major reorganization of the Nubia-Somalia plate boundary (i.e., 11 ± 2 Ma). Afterwards, rift-related faulting involved the Southern MER (Amaro Horst) at ~ 8 Ma, and only later rifting seemingly affected the Central MER (after ~ 7 Ma).

  20. Next-generation Geotectonic Data Analysis: Using pyGPlates to quantify Rift Obliquity during Supercontinent Dispersal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Butterworth, Nathaniel; Brune, Sascha; Williams, Simon; Müller, Dietmar

    2015-04-01

    Fragmentation of a supercontinent by rifting is an integral part of plate tectonics, yet the dynamics that govern the success or failure of individual rift systems are still unclear. Recently, analytical and thermo-mechanical modelling has suggested that obliquely activated rifts are mechanically favoured over orthogonal rift systems. Hence, where two rift zones compete, the more oblique rift proceeds to break-up while the less oblique one stalls and becomes an aulacogen. This implies that the orientation and shape of individual rift systems affects the relative motion of Earth's continents during supercontinent break-up. We test this hypothesis using the latest global plate tectonic reconstructions for the past 200 million years. The analysis is performed using pyGPlates, a recently developed Python library that allows script-based access to the plate reconstruction software GPlates. We quantify rift obliquity, extension velocity and their temporal evolution for all small-scale rift segments that constituted a major rift system during the last 200 million years. Boundaries between continental and oceanic crust (COBs) mark the end of rifting and the beginning of sea floor spreading, which is why we use a global set of updated COBs in order to pinpoint continental break-up and as a proxy for the local trend of former rift systems. Analysing the entire length of all rift systems during the last 200 My, we find a mean obliquity of ~40° (measured as the angle between extension direction and local rift trend normal), with a standard deviation of 25°. More than 75% of all rift segments exceeded an obliquity of 20° highlighting the fact that oblique rifting is the rule, not the exception. More specifically, East and West Gondwana split along the East African coast with a mean obliquity of 45°. While rifting of the central and southern South Atlantic segment involved a low obliquity of 10°, the Equatorial Atlantic opened under a high angle of 60°. The separation of

  1. Rift flank segmentation, basin initiation and propagation: a neotectonic example from Lake Baikal

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Agar, S.M.; Klitgord, Kim D.

    1995-01-01

    New surficial data (field, Landsat TM and topography) define morpho-tectonic domains and rift flank segmentation in the Ol'khon region of the Central Baikal rift. Deformation, drainage and depositional patterns indicate a change in the locus of active extension that may relate to a recent (rift with concomitant shifts in depocentres. Within the hanging wall of the new western border fault, distinct segments control the location of drainage paths and syn-rift deposits. Morphology, sediment thicknesses and fault scarp amplitude indicate that a segmented rift flank graben has propagated southwards along the rift flank and is still actively fragmenting. These surficial data are used to constrain a model for the time-dependent topographic variations during progressive subsidence along a rift flank, involving the transfer of footwall units to hanging-wall domains. Rapid changes in border fault footwall relief in this model are associated with change in the active border fault location with widespread mass-wasting. The model shows that time-dependent histories need to be integrated with flexural uplift models for active normal faults. The active, syn-rift depositional systems of the Ol'khon region provide a valuable analogue for the early evolution of continental margins and the structural controls on syn-rift hydrocarbon sources and reservoirs.

  2. Introduction - Processes of continental rifting

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morgan, P.; Baker, B. H.

    1983-01-01

    It is thought likely that thermal thinning and/or diapirism can cause the extensional stress required for rifting. The rifting, however, will not occur unless the regional tectonic regime permits the sides of the rift to diverge. Whereas passive plate extension could cause rifting in isolation, the extension and rifting are likely to be localized where the lithosphere is weakest over an existing thermal anomaly. In those cases where asthenospheric diapirism occurs, which is essentially a response to thinning of the lithosphere by thermal thinning or plate extension, the effects of diapirism may completely mask the initiating mechanism. It is believed that anomalous heat transfer into the lithosphere, diapirism, and magmatism must all figure in rifting, along with a deviatoric stress field that will permit extension in a developing rift. Even though the models are useful in permitting idealized processes to be quantified and tested, better knowledge of lithosphere properties is considered necessary, in particular knowledge of mantle viscosity and its temperature dependence.

  3. Basin evolution, organization of faulting and the distribution of displacement within the Gulf of Corinth rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nixon, C. W.; McNeill, L. C.; Henstock, T.; Bull, J. M.; Bell, R. E.; Christodoulou, D.; Papatheodorou, G.; Taylor, B.; Ferentinos, G.; Sakellariou, D.; Lykousis, V.; Sachpazi, M.; Ford, M.; Goodliffe, A. M.; Leeder, M.; Gawthorpe, R. L.; Collier, R. E.; Clements, B.

    2013-12-01

    The Gulf of Corinth is a rare example of continental rifting in its initial stages of development, with an extremely dense network of marine geophysical data collected over the past two decades, making it an ideal case study for investigating early rift evolution. Through the integration of numerous seismic reflection surveys, totalling ~3930 km of seismic profiles and covering a range of frequencies (both high resolution seismic and multi-channel seismic, analogue and digital), we present: 1. a refined chronostratigraphic model for the syn-rift sediments that have been deposited in the developing offshore Corinth basin over the past ~1-2 Ma and 2. a detailed rift fault network with confirmed locations, lengths, fault interactions and development, and details of recent displacement. Our results show that chronostratigraphic models from the West Eratini basin are coherent with models from the central part of the rift. We divide the rift stratigraphy into two sequences: a late rift sequence comprising recent interbedded marine-lacustrine sediments deposited over the last ~600 kyr, and a thick early rift sequence with deposits up to ~1-2 Ma of contrasting seismic and sedimentological character. The late rift sequence is divided into six packages and can be correlated with 100 kyr glacio-eustatic cycles. We identify multiple unconformities, including a basin wide unconformity that separates the early and late rift sequences. The unconformities are attributed to differences in fault development and basin subsidence pattern along the rift. Combining the refined chronostratigraphic model with the detailed fault network allows us to: a) determine relative timings of fault activity and basin development; b) estimate absolute fault displacements both spatially and temporally at high resolution (e.g. for each interpreted 100 kyr package); c) calculate sediment flux into the basin during each stratigraphic time interval and spatial distribution of syn-rift sediment through

  4. A model for Iapetan rifting of Laurentia based on Neoproterozoic dikes and related rocks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Burton, William C.; Southworth, Scott

    2010-01-01

    Geologic evidence of the Neoproterozoic rifting of Laurentia during breakup of Rodinia is recorded in basement massifs of the cratonic margin by dike swarms, volcanic and plutonic rocks, and rift-related clastic sedimentary sequences. The spatial and temporal distribution of these geologic features varies both within and between the massifs but preserves evidence concerning the timing and nature of rifting. The most salient features include: (1) a rift-related magmatic event recorded in the French Broad massif and the southern and central Shenandoah massif that is distinctly older than that recorded in the northern Shenandoah massif and northward; (2) felsic volcanic centers at the north ends of both French Broad and Shenandoah massifs accompanied by dike swarms; (3) differences in volume between massifs of cover-sequence volcanic rocks and rift-related clastic rocks; and (4) WNW orientation of the Grenville dike swarm in contrast to the predominately NE orientation of other Neoproterozoic dikes. Previously proposed rifting mechanisms to explain these features include rift-transform and plume–triple-junction systems. The rift-transform system best explains features 1, 2, and 3, listed here, and we propose that it represents the dominant rifting mechanism for most of the Laurentian margin. To explain feature 4, as well as magmatic ages and geochemical trends in the Northern Appalachians, we propose that a plume–triple-junction system evolved into the rift-transform system. A ca. 600 Ma mantle plume centered east of the Sutton Mountains generated the radial dike swarm of the Adirondack massif and the Grenville dike swarm, and a collocated triple junction generated the northern part of the rift-transform system. An eastern branch of this system produced the Long Range dike swarm in Newfoundland, and a subsequent western branch produced the ca. 554 Ma Tibbit Hill volcanics and the ca. 550 Ma rift-related magmatism of Newfoundland.

  5. Cenozoic rifting in the West Antarctic Rift System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Granot, R.; Cande, S. S.; Stock, J. M.; Clayton, R. W.; Davey, F. J.

    2007-12-01

    The West Antarctic Rift System (WARS) experienced two episodes of Cenozoic rifting. Seafloor spreading at the Adare spreading axis, north of the Ross Sea, from Middle Eocene to Late Oligocene time (43 - 26 Ma), was directly linked with motions within the WARS. For this time interval, marine magnetic anomalies within the Adare Basin and structural features within the Ross Sea constrain the motion between East and West Antarctica. During this episode, widespread intrusive activity took place in the continental part of the rift. Subsequent Late Oligocene until present-day (26 - 0 Ma) extension was characterized by a transition to volcanic activity. Yet, the details of extension during this episode have been poorly resolved. We present preliminary results of new seismic reflection and seafloor mapping data acquired on geophysical cruise 07-01 aboard the R/VIB Nathaniel Palmer in the northern part of the rift. Our results suggest that the style of deformation changed from spreading-related faulting into diffuse normal faulting (tilted blocks) that trend NE-SW with little resultant E-W extension. Recent volcanism is distributed throughout but tends to align with the NE-SW trend, into a localized zone. Formation of the Terror Rift, Ross Sea, within the same time frame suggests that the pole of rotation has changed its position, reflecting a change in the relative magnitudes of tensile stresses along the rift. Moreover, this change was accompanied with a sharp decrease of extension rates.

  6. Along-axis transition between narrow and wide rifts: Insights from 3D numerical experiments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koptev, Alexander; Calais, Eric; Burov, Evgueni; Leroy, Sylvie; Gerya, Taras

    2016-04-01

    Based on performed high-resolution rheologically consistent three-dimensional thermo-mechanical numerical models, we show that there is a significant difference in the influence of the rheological profile on rifting style in the case of dominant active (plume-activated) rifting compared to dominant passive (far-field tectonic stresses) rifting. Narrow rifting, conventionally attributed to cold strong lithosphere in passive rifting mode, may develop in weak hot ultra-stretched lithosphere during active rifting, after plume impingement on a tectonically pre-stressed lithosphere. In that case, initially ultra-wide small-amplitude rift patterns focus, in a few Myr, in large-scale faults that form a narrow rift. Also, wide rifting may develop during ultra-slow spreading of strong lithosphere, and "switch" to the narrow rifting upon plume impingement. For further understanding the mechanisms behind the interactions between the mantle plume and far-field stresses in case of realistic horizontally heterogeneous lithosphere, we have tested our models on the case of the central East African Rift system (EARS). The EARS south of the Ethiopian Rift Valley bifurcates in two branches (eastern, magma-rich and western, magma-poor) surrounding the strong Tanzanian craton. Broad zones of low seismic velocity observed throughout the upper mantle beneath the central part of the EARS are consistent with the spreading of a deep mantle plume. The extensional features and topographic expression of the Eastern rift varies significantly north-southward: in northern Kenya the area of deformation is very wide (some 150-250 km in E-W direction), to the south the rift narrows to 60-70 km, yet further to the south this localized deformation widens again. Here we investigate this transition between localized and wide rifting using thermo-mechanical numerical modeling that couples, in a dynamic sense, the rise of the upper mantle material with the deformation of the African lithosphere below the

  7. Rift basins - Origin, history, and distribution

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burke, K. C.

    1985-01-01

    Rifts are elongate depressions overlying places where the lithosphere has ruptured in extension. Where filled with sediment they may contain exploitable quantities of oil and gas. Because rits form in a variety of tectonic settings, it is helpful to define the particular tectonic environment in which a specific rift or set of rifts has developed. A useful approach has been to relate that environment to the Wilson Cycle of the opening and the closing of oceans. This appreciation of tectonic setting can help in better understanding of the depositional, structural and thermal history of individual rift systems. The global distribution of rifts can also be related to tectonic environment. For example, rifts associated with continental rupture at a temporary still-stand of a continent over the mantle convective system (rifts like those active in East Africa today) can be distinguished from those associated with continental collision (rifts like the Cenozoic rifts of China).

  8. Geoscience Methods Lead to Paleo-anthropological Discoveries in Afar Rift, Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    WoldeGabriel, Giday; Renne, Paul R.; Hart, William K.; Ambrose, Stanley; Asfaw, Berhane; White, Tim D.

    2004-07-01

    With few exceptions, most of the hominid evolutionary record in Africa is closely associated with the East African Rift System. The exceptions are the South African and Chadian hominids collected from the southern and west-central parts of the continent, respectively. The Middle Awash region stands alone as the most prolific paleoanthropological area ever discovered (Figure 1). Its paleontological record has yielded over 13,000 vertebrate fossils, including several hominid taxa, ranging in age from 5.8 Ma to the present. The uniqueness of the Middle Awash hominid sites lies in their occurrence within long, > 6 Ma volcanic and sedimentary stratigraphic records. The Middle Awash region has yielded the longest hominid record yet available. The region is characterized by distinct geologic features related to a volcanic and tectonic transition zone between the continental Main Ethiopian and the proto-oceanic Afar Rifts. The rift floor is wider-200 km-than other parts of the East African Rift (Figure 1). Moreover, its Quaternary axial rift zone is wide and asymetrically located close to the western margin. The fossil assemblages and the lithostratigraphic records suggest that volcanic and tectonic activities within the broad rift floor and the adjacent rift margins were intense and episodic during the late Neogene rift evolution.

  9. Kinematic and thermal evolution of the Moroccan rifted continental margin: Doukkala-High Atlas transect

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gouiza, M.; Bertotti, G.; Hafid, M.; Cloetingh, S.

    2010-10-01

    The Atlantic passive margin of Morocco developed during Mesozoic times in association with the opening of the Central Atlantic and the Alpine Tethys. Extensional basins formed along the future continental margin and in the Atlas rift system. In Alpine times, this system was inverted to form the High and Middle Atlas fold-and-thrust belts. To provide a quantitative kinematic analysis of the evolution of the rifted margin, we present a crustal section crossing the Atlantic margin in the region of the Doukkala Basin, the Meseta and the Atlas system. We construct a post-rift upper crustal section compensating for Tertiary to present vertical movements and horizontal deformations, and we conduct numerical modeling to test quantitative relations between amounts and distribution of thinning and related vertical movements. Rifting along the transect began in the Late Triassic and ended with the appearance of oceanic crust at 175 Ma. Subsidence, possibly related to crustal thinning, continued in the Atlas rift in the Middle Jurassic. The numerical models confirm that the margin experienced a polyphase rifting history. The lithosphere along the transect preserved some strength throughout rifting with the Effective Elastic Thickness corresponding to an isotherm of 450°C. A mid-crustal level of necking of 15 km characterized the pre-rift lithosphere.

  10. Stress perturbation associated with the Amazonas and other ancient continental rifts

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zoback, M.L.; Richardson, R.M.

    1996-01-01

    The state of stress in the vicinity of old continental rifts is examined to investigate the possibility that crustal structure associated with ancient rifts (specifically a dense rift pillow in the lower crust) may modify substantially the regional stress field. Both shallow (2.0-2.6 km depth) breakout data and deep (20-45 km depth) crustal earthquake focal mechanisms indicate a N to NNE maximum horizontal compression in the vicinity of the Paleozoic Amazonas rift in central Brazil. This compressive stress direction is nearly perpendicular to the rift structure and represents a ???75?? rotation relative to a regional E-W compressive stress direction in the South American plate. Elastic two-dimensional finite element models of the density structure associated with the Amazonas rift (as inferred from independent gravity modeling) indicate that elastic support of this dense feature would generate horizontal rift-normal compressional stresses between 60 and 120 MPa, with values of 80-100 MPa probably most representative of the overall structure. The observed ???75?? stress rotation constrains the ratio of the regional horizontal stress difference to the rift-normal compressive stress to be between 0.25 and 1.0, suggesting that this rift-normal stress may be from 1 to 4 times larger than the regional horizontal stress difference. A general expression for the modification of the normalized local horizontal shear stress (relative to the regional horizontal shear stress) shows that the same ratio of the rift-normal compression relative to the regional horizontal stress difference, which controls the amount of stress rotation, also determines whether the superposed stress increases or decreases the local maximum horizontal shear stress. The potential for fault reactivation of ancient continental rifts in general is analyzed considering both the local stress rotation and modification of horizontal shear stress for both thrust and strike-slip stress regimes. In the Amazonas

  11. The geometry of propagating rifts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McKenzie, Dan

    1986-03-01

    The kinematics of two different processes are investigated, both of which have been described as rift propagation. Courtillot uses this term to describe the change from distributed to localised extension which occurs during the early development of an ocean basin. The term localisation is instead used here to describe this process, to distinguish it from Hey's type of propagation. Localisation generally leads to rotation of the direction of magnetisation. To Hey propagation means the extension of a rift into the undeformed plate beyond a transform fault. Detail surveys of the Galapagos rift have shown that the propagating and failing rifts are not connected by a single transform fault, but by a zone which is undergoing shear. The principal deformation is simple shear, and the kinematics of this deformation are investigated in some detail. The strike of most of the lineations observed in the area can be produced by such deformation. The mode of extension on the propagating rift appears to be localised for some periods but to be distributed for others. Neither simple kinematic arguments nor stretching of the lithosphere with conservation of crust can account for the observed variations in water depth.

  12. Shear zone reactivation during South Atlantic rifting in NW Namibia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koehn, D.; Passchier, C. W.; Salomon, E.

    2013-12-01

    Reactivation of inherited structures during rifting as well as an influence of inherited structures on the orientation of a developing rift has long been discussed (e.g. Piqué & Laville, 1996; Younes & McClay, 2002). Here, we present a qualitative and quantitative study of shear zone reactivation during the South Atlantic opening in NW Namibia. The study area comprises the Neo-Proterozoic rocks of the Kaoko Belt which was formed during the amalgamation of Gondwana. The Kaoko Belt encompasses the prominent ~500 km long ductile Purros shear zone and the Three Palms shear zone, both running sub-parallel to the present continental margin. The Kaoko Belt is partly overlain by the basalts of the Paraná-Etendeka Large Igneous Province, which with an age of ~133 Ma were emplaced just before or during the onset of the Atlantic rifting at this latitude. Combining the analysis of satellite imagery and digital elevation models with extensive field work, we identified numerous faults tracing the old shear zones along which the Etendeka basalts were down-faulted. The faults are often listric, yet we also found evidence for a regional scale basin formation. Our analysis allowed for constructing the geometry of three of these faults and we could thus estimate the vertical offsets to ~150 m, ~500 m, and ~1100 m, respectively. Our results contribute to the view that the basement inheritance plays a significant role on rifting processes and that the reactivation of shear zones can accumulate significant amounts of displacement. References: Pique, A. and E. Laville (1996). The Central Atlantic rifting: Reactivation of Paleozoic structures?. J. Geodynamics, 21, 235-255. Younes, I.A. and K. McClay (2002). Development of accommodation zones in the Gulf of Suez-Red Sea rift, Egypt. AAPG Bulletin, 86, 1003-1026.

  13. New evidence for magmatic intrusion beneath the Rio Grande rift, New Mexico.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Towle, J.N.

    1980-01-01

    An analysis of the geomagnetic variation field across the Rio Grande rift has identified two concentrations of telluric current flow beneath the rift caused by channeling of telluric currents in electrically conductive structures in the crust and upper mantle. A shallow conductor nearly coincides with a very strong reflection in a high-resoltuion seismic-reflection profile across the central Rio Grande graben which has been attributed to a lens at mid-crustal depth. The deep (more than 30 km) conductor is 200 km wide and may indicate anomalously high temperatures and, by inference, a thinning of the lithosphere beneath the rift.-Authors

  14. The East African rift system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chorowicz, Jean

    2005-10-01

    This overview paper considers the East African rift system (EARS) as an intra-continental ridge system, comprising an axial rift. It describes the structural organization in three branches, the overall morphology, lithospheric cross-sections, the morphotectonics, the main tectonic features—with emphasis on the tension fractures—and volcanism in its relationships with the tectonics. The most characteristic features in the EARS are narrow elongate zones of thinned continental lithosphere related to asthenospheric intrusions in the upper mantle. This hidden part of the rift structure is expressed on the surface by thermal uplift of the rift shoulders. The graben valleys and basins are organized over a major failure in the lithospheric mantle, and in the crust comprise a major border fault, linked in depth to a low angle detachment fault, inducing asymmetric roll-over pattern, eventually accompanied by smaller normal faulting and tilted blocks. Considering the kinematics, divergent movements caused the continent to split along lines of preexisting lithospheric weaknesses marked by ancient tectonic patterns that focus the extensional strain. The hypothesis favored here is SE-ward relative divergent drifting of a not yet well individualized Somalian plate, a model in agreement with the existence of NW-striking transform and transfer zones. The East African rift system comprises a unique succession of graben basins linked and segmented by intracontinental transform, transfer and accommodation zones. In an attempt to make a point on the rift system evolution through time and space, it is clear that the role of plume impacts is determinant. The main phenomenon is formation of domes related to plume effect, weakening the lithosphere and, long after, failure inducing focused upper mantle thinning, asthenospheric intrusion and related thermal uplift of shoulders. The plume that had formed first at around 30 Ma was not in the Afar but likely in Lake Tana region (Ethiopia

  15. Rift strength controls rapid plate accelerations: A global analysis of Pangea fragmentation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brune, S.; Williams, S.; Butterworth, N. P.; Müller, D.

    2015-12-01

    Motions of Earth's plates are thought to be driven by slab pull, basal drag, and ridge push. Here we propose that plate motions during supercontinental fragmentation are decisively controlled by the non-linear decay of a resistive force: rift strength. We use state-of-the-art global tectonic reconstructions and the new geotectonic analysis tool pyGPlates to analyze the transition from rifting to sea-floor spreading of well-studied post-Pangea rift systems (Central Atlantic, South Atlantic, Iberia/Newfoundland, Australia/Antarctica, North Atlantic, South China Sea, Gulf of California). In all cases, continental extension starts with a slow phase (< 10 mm/yr, full extension velocity) followed by a rapid acceleration over periods of a few My that introduces a fast rift phase (> 10 mm/yr). The transition from slow to fast extension takes place long before crustal break-up. In fact, we find that approximately half of the present day rifted margin area was created during the slow, and the other half during the fast phase. We reproduce the transition from slow to fast rifting using numerical forward models with force boundary conditions, such that rift velocities are not imposed but instead evolve naturally in response to changing strength of the rift. These models show that the two-phase velocity behavior during rifting and the rapid speed-up are intrinsic features of continental rupture that can be robustly inferred for different crust and mantle rheologies.It has been proposed that abrupt plate accelerations can be caused by plume-lithosphere interaction, subduction initiation, and slab detachment. However, none of these mechanisms explains our result that plate speed-up systematically precedes continental break-up. We therefore propose dynamic rift weakening as a new mechanism for rapid plate motion changes.

  16. Crustal structure of the northern mississippi embayment and a comparison with other continental rift zones

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mooney, W.D.; Andrews, M.C.; Ginzburg, A.; Peters, D.A.; Hamilton, R.M.

    1983-01-01

    Previous geological and geophysical investigations have suggested that the Mississippi Embayment is the site of a Late Precambrian continental rift that was reactivated in the Mesozoic. New information on the deep structure of the northern Mississippi Embayment, gained through an extensive seismic refraction survey, supports a rifting hypothesis. The data indicate that the crust of the Mississippi Embayment may be characterized by six primary layers that correspond geologically to unconsolidated Mesozoic and Tertiary sediments (1.8 km/s), Paleozoic carbonate and clastic sedimentary rocks (5.9 km/s), a low-velocity layer of Early Paleozoic sediments (4.9 km/s), crystalline upper crust (6.2 km/s), lower crust (6.6 km/s), modified lower crust (7.3 km/s), and mantle. Average crustal thickness is approximately 41 km. The presence and configuration of the low-velocity layer provide new evidence for rifting in the Mississippi Embayment. The layer lies within the northeast-trending upper-crustal graben reported by Kane et al. (1981), and probably represents marine shales deposited in the graben after rifting. The confirmation and delineation of a 7.3 km/s layer, identified in previous studies, implies that the lower crust has been altered by injection of mantle material. Our results indicate that this layer reaches a maximum thickness in the north-central Embayment and thins gradually to the southeast and northwest, and more rapidly to the southwest along the axis of the graben. The apparent doming of the 7.3 km/s layer in the north-central Embayment suggests that rifting may be the result of a triple junction located in the Reelfoot Basin area. The crustal structure of the Mississippi Embayment is compared to other continental rifts: the Rhinegraben, Limagnegraben, Rio Grande Rift, Gregory Rift, and the Salton Trough. This comparison suggests that alteration of the lower crust is a ubiquitous feature of continental rifts. ?? 1983.

  17. Rifting, landsliding and magmatic variability in the Canary Islands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carracedo, J. C.; Troll, V. R.; Guillou, H.; Badiola, E. R.; Pérez-Torrado, F. J.; Wiesmaier, S.; Delcamp, A.; Gonzalez, A. R.

    2009-04-01

    Rifts, probably the most influential structures in the geology of the Canary Islands, may also be responsible for the development of central felsic volcanoes, which are consistently nested in the collapse basins of the massive lateral collapses found in the Canaries. Three main types of post-collapse volcanism have been observed, particularly in the western Canaries: 1. Collapses followed by relatively scant, non-differentiated volcanism inside the collapse depression (El Golfo, El Hierro; La Orotava and Güímar, Tenerife), 2. those with important, although short-lasting (tens of thousands of years), post-collapse activity including felsic (phonolitic, trachytic) central volcanism (Bejenado, La Palma; Vallehermoso, La Gomera), and 3. those with very important, long-lasting (>100 kyr) post-collapse activity, evolving from primitive to felsic magmatism, eventually resulting in very high stratovolcanoes (Teide, Tenerife). Three consecutive sector collapses (Micheque, Güímar and La Orotava) mass-wasted the flanks of in the NE rift of Tenerife after intense and concentrated eruptive activity, particularly from about 1.10 Ma to 0.96 Ma, with periods of growth up to 15-25 m/kyr. Volcanic activity completely filled the Micheque collapse, evolving from basaltic to differentiated trachytic eruptions. Conversely, nested volcanism was less abundant in the Güímar and La Orotava collapses. This requires two fundamentally different scenarios which may be a function of active versus passive flank collapse trigger mechanisms: 1. The collapse occurs as a result of one of these short but intense intrusive-eruptive periods and probably triggered by concurring extensional stresses at the rifts (rift push), or 2. the giant landslide is derived only from gravitational instability. In the first scenario, the collapse of the flank of the rift may disrupt an established fissural feeding system that rapidly fills the collapse basin. Due to its disruption and the progressive new

  18. Clastic rocks associated with the Midcontinent rift system in Iowa

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Anderson, Raymond R.; McKay, Robert M.

    1997-01-01

    The Middle Proterozoic Midcontinent Rift System (MRS) of North America is a failed rift that formed in response to region-wide stresses about 1,100 Ma. In Iowa, the MRS is buried beneath 2,200?3,500 ft of Paleozoic and Mesozoic sedimentary rocks and Quaternary glaciogenic deposits. An extremely large volume of sediments was deposited within basins associated with the rift at several stages during its development. Although the uplift of a rift-axial horst resulted in the erosional removal of most of these clastic rocks from the central region of the MRS in Iowa, thick sequences are preserved in a series of horst-bounding basins. Recent studies incorporating petrographic analysis, geophysical modeling, and other analytical procedures have led to the establishment of a preliminary stratigraphy for these clastic rocks and interpretations of basin geometries. This information has allowed the refinement of existing theories and history of MRS formation in Iowa. Additionally, drill samples previously interpreted as indicating the existence of early Paleozoic basins overlying the Proterozoic MRS basins were re-examined. Samples previously interpreted as deep-lying Paleozoic rocks are now known to have caved from upper levels of the drillhole and were out of stratigraphic position. No deep Paleozoic basins exist in this area. These investigations led to the development of petrographic parameters useful in differentiating the Proterozoic MRS Red clastics from Paleozoic clastic rocks having similar lithologies.

  19. The Midcontinent rift in the Lake Superior region with emphasis on its geodynamic evolution

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cannon, W.F.

    1992-01-01

    The Midcontinent rift is a Middle Proterozoic continental rift which records about 15 m.y. of extension, subsidence, and voluminous volcanism in the period 1109-1094 Ma in the central part of North America. During that time the crust was nearly totally separated and as much as 25 km of subaerial basalts accumulated in a deep central depression. Following extension and volcanism, a longer period of subsidence resulted in development of a post-rift sedimentary basin in which as much a 8 km of fluvial and lacustrine clastic rocks were deposited. Partial inversion of the central depression occurred about 30-50 m.y. after extension to produce the current configuration of a central horst, composed mostly of thick volcanic accumulations, between shallower flanking basins. ?? 1992.

  20. Cenozoic rift formation in the northern Caribbean

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mann, P.; Burke, K.

    1984-01-01

    Rifts form in many different tectonic environments where the lithosphere is put into extension. An outline is provided of the distribution, orientation, and relative ages of 16 Cenozoic rifts along the northern edge of the Caribbean plate and it is suggested that these structures formed successively by localized extension as the Caribbean plate moved eastward past a continental promontory of North America. Evidence leading to this conclusion includes (1) recognition that the rifts become progressively younger westward; (2) a two-phase subsidence history in a rift exposed by upthrusting in Jamaica; (3) the absence of rifts east of Jamaica; and (4) the observation that removal of 1400 km of strike-slip displacement on the Cayman Trough fault system places the Paleogene rifts of Jamaica in an active area of extension south of Yucatan where the rifts of Honduras and Guatemala are forming today.

  1. A continental rift model for the La Grande greenstone belt

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Skulski, T.; Hynes, A.; Liu, M.; Francis, D.; Rivard, B.; Stamatelopoulou-Seymour, K.

    1986-01-01

    Stratigraphic relationships and the geochemistry of volcanic rocks contrain the nature and timing of the tectonic and magmatic processes in the pre-deformational history of the La Grande greenstone belt in the Superior Province of north-central Quebec. The lowermost supracrustals in this belt are obscured by syntectonic granitoid intrusives. The supracrustal succession in the western part of the belt consists of a lower sequence of immature clastic sediments and mafic volcanoclastics, overlain by pillowed and massive basalts. Further east, along tectonic strike, a lower sequence of mafic volcanoclastics and immature clastic sediments is overlain by a thick sequence of pillowed and massive basalts, and resedimented coarse clastic sediments and banded iron formation. These are overlain by assive basaltic andesites, andesites and intermediate volcanoclastics intercalated with immature clastic sediments. In contrast, in the eastern part of the belt lenses of felsic volcanics and volcanoclastics occur at the base of the succession and pillowed and massive basalts are overlain by komatiites at the top. The La Grande greenstone belt can be explained as the product of continental rifting. The restricted occurence of komatiites, and eastwardly directed paleocurrents in clastic sediments in the central part of the belt are consistent with rifting commencing in the east and propagating westward with time. The increase in depth of emplacement and deposition with time of the lower three units in the central part of the belt reflects deposition in a subsiding basin. These supracrustal rocks are believed to represent the initial rift succession.

  2. ALVIN-SeaBeam studies of the Sumisu Rift, Izu-Bonin arc

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taylor, B.; Brown, G.; Fryer, P.; Gill, J. B.; Hochstaedter, A. G.; Hotta, H.; Langmuir, C. H.; Leinen, M.; Nishimura, A.; Urabe, T.

    1990-10-01

    Bimodal volcanism, normal faulting, rapid sedimentation, and hydrothermal circulation characterize the rifting of the Izu-Bonin arc at 31°N. Analysis of the zigzag pattern, in plan view, of the normal faults that bound Sumisu Rift indicates that the extension direction (080° ± 10°) is orthogonal to the regional trend of the volcanic front. Normal faults divide the rift into an inner rift on the arc side, which is the locus for maximum subsidence and sedimentation, and an outer rift further west. Transfer zones that link opposing master faults and/or rift flank uplifts further subdivide the rift into three segments along strike. Volcanism is concentrated along the ENE-trending transfer zone which separates the northern and central rift segments. The differential motion across the zone is accommodated by interdigitating north-trending normal faults rather than by ENE-trending oblique-slip faults. Volcanism in the outer rift has built 50-700 m high edifices without summit craters whereas in the inner rift it has formed two multi-vent en echelon ridges (the largest is 600 m high and 16 km long). The volcanism is dominantly basaltic, with compositions reflecting mantle sources little influenced by arc components. An elongate rhyolite dome and low-temperature hydrothermal deposits occur at the en echelon step in the larger ridge, which is located at the intersection of the transfer zone with the inner rift. The chimneys, veins, and crusts are composed of silica, barite and iron oxide, and are of similar composition to the ferruginous chert that mantles the Kuroko deposits. A 1.2-km transect of seven ALVIN heat flow measurements at 30°48.5'N showed that the inner-rift-bounding faults may serve as water recharge zones, but that they are not necessarily areas of focussed hydrothermal outflow, which instead occurs through the thick basin sediments. The rift basin and arc margin sediments are probably dominated by permeable rhyolitic pumice and ash erupted from submarine

  3. Cenozoic extension in the Kenya Rift from low-temperature thermochronology: Links to diachronous spatiotemporal evolution of rifting in East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Torres Acosta, Verónica; Bande, Alejandro; Sobel, Edward R.; Parra, Mauricio; Schildgen, Taylor F.; Stuart, Finlay; Strecker, Manfred R.

    2015-12-01

    The cooling history of rift shoulders and the subsidence history of rift basins are cornerstones for reconstructing the morphotectonic evolution of extensional geodynamic provinces, assessing their role in paleoenvironmental changes and evaluating the resource potential of their basin fills. Our apatite fission track and zircon (U-Th)/He data from the Samburu Hills and the Elgeyo Escarpment in the northern and central sectors of the Kenya Rift indicate a broadly consistent thermal evolution of both regions. Results of thermal modeling support a three-phased thermal history since the early Paleocene. The first phase (~65-50 Ma) was characterized by rapid cooling of the rift shoulders and may be coeval with faulting and sedimentation in the Anza Rift basin, now located in the subsurface of the Turkana depression and areas to the east in northern Kenya. In the second phase, very slow cooling or slight reheating occurred between ~45 and 15 Ma as a result of either stable surface conditions, very slow exhumation, or subsidence. The third phase comprised renewed rapid cooling starting at ~15 Ma. This final cooling represents the most recent stage of rifting, which followed widespread flood-phonolite emplacement and has shaped the present-day landscape through rift shoulder uplift, faulting, basin filling, protracted volcanism, and erosion. When compared with thermochronologic and geologic data from other sectors of the East African Rift System, extension appears to be diachronous, spatially disparate, and partly overlapping, likely driven by interactions between mantle-driven processes and crustal heterogeneities, rather than the previously suggested north-south migrating influence of a mantle plume.

  4. Geophysical evidence of pre-sag rifting and post-rifting fault reactivation in the Parnaíba basin, Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lopes de Castro, David; Hilário Bezerra, Francisco; Adolfo Fuck, Reinhardt; Vidotti, Roberta Mary

    2016-04-01

    This study investigated the rifting mechanism that preceded the prolonged subsidence of the Paleozoic Parnaíba basin in Brazil and shed light on the tectonic evolution of this large cratonic basin in the South American platform. From the analysis of aeromagnetic, aerogravity, seismic reflection and borehole data, we concluded the following: (1) large pseudo-gravity and gravity lows mimic graben structures but are associated with linear supracrustal strips in the basement. (2) Seismic data indicate that 120-200 km wide and up to 300 km long rift zones occur in other parts of the basins. These rift zones mark the early stage of the 3.5 km thick sag basin. (3) The rifting phase occurred in the early Paleozoic and had a subsidence rate of 47 m Myr-1. (4) This rifting phase was followed by a long period of sag basin subsidence at a rate of 9.5 m Myr-1 between the Silurian and the late Cretaceous, during which rift faults propagated and influenced deposition. These data interpretations support the following succession of events: (1) after the Brasiliano orogeny (740-580 Ma), brittle reactivation of ductile basement shear zones led to normal and dextral oblique-slip faulting concentrated along the Transbrasiliano Lineament, a continental-scale shear zone that marks the boundary between basement crustal blocks. (2) The post-orogenic tectonic brittle reactivation of the ductile basement shear zones led to normal faulting associated with dextral oblique-slip crustal extension. In the west, pure-shear extension induced the formation of rift zones that crosscut metamorphic foliations and shear zones within the Parnaíba block. (3) The rift faults experienced multiple reactivation phases. (4) Similar processes may have occurred in coeval basins in the Laurentia and Central African blocks of Gondwana.

  5. Parga Chasma: Coronae and Rifting on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smrekar, S. E.; Stofan, E. R.; Buck, W. R.; Martin, P.

    2005-01-01

    The majority of coronae (quasicircular volcano-tectonic features) are found along rifts or fracture belts, and the majority of rifts have coronae [e.g. 1,2]. However, the relationship between coronae and rifts remains unclear [3-6]. There is evidence that coronae can form before, after, or synchronously with rifts [3,4]. The extensional fractures in the rift zones have been proposed to be a result of broad scale upwelling and traction on the lower lithosphere [7]. However, not all rift systems have a significant positive geoid anomaly, as would be expected for an upwelling site [8]. This could be explained if the rifts lacking anomalies are no longer active. Coronae are generally accepted to be sites of local upwelling [e.g. 1], but the observed rifting is frequently not radial to the coronae and extends well beyond the coronae into the surrounding plains. Thus the question remains as to whether the rifts represent regional extension, perhaps driven by mantle tractions, or if the coronae themselves create local thinning and extension of the lithosphere. In the first case, a regional extension model should be consistent with the observed characteristics of the rifts. In the latter case, a model of lithospheric loading and fracturing would be more appropriate. A good analogy may be the propagation of oceanic intraplate volcanoes [9].

  6. Arshan palaeoseismic feature of the Tunka fault (Baikal rift zone, Russia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smekalin, Oleg P.; Shchetnikov, Alexander A.; White, Dustin

    2013-01-01

    The traditional concept of the rift development of flank depressions in the Baikal rift zone is now doubted in view of some indicators for compression deformations identified by the seismogeological and geodetic methods. Besides, the paleoseismological investigations revealed seismogenic strike-slips and reverse faults in the Tunka fault zone that is a major structure-controlling element of the Tunka rift depression. However, a detailed study of the upslope-facing scarp in the Arshan paleoseismogenic structure zone has shown that its formation might be due to rift mechanism of basin formation. Age estimation has been made for the previously unknown pre-historic earthquake whose epicentral area coincides with the western flank of the Arshan paleoseismogenic structure. Judging from previously determined ages of paleoearthquakes, the mean recurrence period for faulting events on the central Tunka fault is 2780-3440 years.

  7. Magmatism in rifting and basin formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thybo, H.

    2008-12-01

    Whether heating and magmatism cause rifting or rifting processes cause magmatic activity is highly debated. The stretching factor in rift zones can be estimated as the relation between the initial and the final crustal thickness provided that the magmatic addition to the crust is insignificant. Recent research demonstrates substantial magmatic intrusion into the crust in the form of sill like structures in the lowest crust in the presently active Kenya and Baikal rift zones and the DonBas palaeo-rift zone in Ukraine. This result may be surprising as the Kenya Rift is associated with large amounts of volcanic products, whereas the Baikal Rift shows very little volcanism. Identification of large amounts of magmatic intrusion into the crust has strong implications for estimation of stretching factor, which in the case of Baikal Rift Zone is around 1.7 but direct estimation gives a value of 1.3-1.4 if the magmatic addition is not taken into account. This may indicate that much more stretching has taken place on rift systems than hitherto believed. Wide sedimentary basins may form around aborted rifts due to loading of the lithosphere by sedimentary and volcanic in-fill of the rift. This type of subsidence will create wide basins without faulting. The Norwegian- Danish basin in the North Sea area also has subsided gradually during the Triassic without faulting, but only few rift structures have been identified below the Triassic sequences. We have identified several mafic intrusions in the form of large batholiths, typically more than 100 km long, 20-40 km wide and 20 km thick. The associated heating would have lifted the surface by about 2 km, which may have been eroded before cooling. The subsequent contraction due to solidification and cooling would create subsidence in a geometry similar to basins that developed by loading. These new aspects of magmatism will be discussed with regard to rifting and basin formation.

  8. Magmatism in a Cambrian Laurentian Plate Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gilbert, M. C.

    2008-12-01

    Evidences of the Cambrian Southern Oklahoma Aulacogen extend over 1000km from about Dallas out to the Uncompahgre Plateau in SW Colorado. The signature of this originally extensional feature can be traced geophysically, and in some places at the present surface, petrologically and temporally, by the presence of mafic rock. It appears to have been the intracontinental third arm of a plume-generated? triple junction which helped to dismember the southern part of Laurentia on the final break-up of a Neoproterozoic supercontinent. Other parts of Laurentia rifted away and are now found in the Precordillera of Argentina. Rift magmatism appears to have been concentrated nearer the plate edge during the breakup. Perhaps as much as 40,000 km3 of mostly subaerial silicic volcanics and shallow-seated granites overlay and filled the top of the rift in the area of SW Oklahoma. The rift fill below the silicic rocks is large, layered mafic complexes and smaller, layered, hydrous gabbros, the whole set appearing as a shallow AMCG complex. Unusually, direct rift sediments are not obvious. Furthermore, silicic and mafic rocks have identical Nd signatures. Finally, about 20 Ma after rifting ceased and later into the Paleozoic during sea incursion, overlying sediments are thickened 4X compared to equivalent units 100's of kms to the rift sides. This rift appears distinct from most modern rifts. Conclusions are 1) This was a hot, narrow rift; 2) Basaltic magmatism , not sedimentation, filled the rift; 3) Magmatic intensity varied along the rift strike; 4) Silicic rocks were generated mostly directly from new mantle-derived basalt liquids through fractionation, not melting of older crustal rocks; 5) Laurentian lithosphere was weak allowing centering of the Early/Middle Paleozoic large "Oklahoma" basin (pre-Anadarko) over the rift.

  9. Classification of the rift zones of venus: Rift valleys and graben belts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guseva, E. N.

    2016-05-01

    The spatial distribution of rift zones of Venus, their topographic configuration, morphometric parameters, and the type of volcanism associating with rifts were analyzed. This allowed the main characteristic features of rifts to be revealed and two different types of rift-forming structures, serving for classification of rift zones as rift valleys and graben belts, to be isolated. These structural types (facies) of rift zones are differently expressed in the relief: rift valleys are individual deep (several kilometers) W-shaped canyons, while graben belts are clusters of multiple V-shaped and rather shallow (hundreds of meters) depressions. Graben belts are longer and wider, as compared to rift valleys. Rift valleys are spatially associated with dome-shaped volcanic rises and large volcanos (concentrated volcanic sources), while graben belts do not exhibit such associations. Volcanic activity in the graben belts are presented by spacious lava fields with no apparent sources of volcanism. Graben belts and rift valleys were formed during the Atlian Period of geologic history of Venus, and they characterized the tectonic style of the planet at the late stages of its geologic evolution. Formation of this or that structural facies of the rift zones of Venus were probably governed by the thickness of the lithosphere, its rheological properties, and the development degree of the mantle diapirs associating with rift zones.

  10. Rift flank uplift and thermal evolution of an intracratonic rift basin (eastern Canada) determined by combined apatite and zircon (U-Th)/He thermochronology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hardie, Rebecca; Schneider, David; Metcalf, James; Flowers, Rebecca

    2015-04-01

    As a significant portion of the world's oil reserves are retrieved from rift systems, a better understanding of the timing of thermal evolution and burial history of these systems will increase the potential for the discovery of hydrocarbon-bearing rifts. The Ottawa Embayment of the St. Lawrence Platform of eastern Canada is a reactivated intracratonic rift basin related to the opening of the Iapetus Ocean at ca. 620-570 Ma, followed by the formation of the well-developed continental passive margin. Siliciclastic sediments derived from the adjacent uplifted Neoproterozoic Grenville basement provide the basin fill material. Apatite and zircon (U-Th)/He thermochronology allows for low-temperature analysis across the exposed crystalline rift flank into the synrift sedimentary sequence to resolve the unroofing, burial and subsidence history of the region. Samples were collected along a ~250 km NE-SW transect, oblique to the axis of the rift, from Mont-Tremblant, Québec (~900 m) to the central axis of the Paleozoic rift in the Southern Ontario Lowlands (~300 m). Targets included Neoproterozoic metamorphic rocks of the Grenville Province along the rift flank and basinal Cambro-Ordovician Potsdam Group. Samples from the rift flank yield zircon ages from ca. 650 Ma to ca. 560 Ma and apatite ages from ca. 290 Ma to ca. 190 Ma, with a weak positive correlation between age and grain size. Zircon ages demonstrate a strong negative correlation with radiation damage: as eU increases, age decreases. By incorporating (U-Th)/He ages with regional constraints in the thermal modelling program HeFTy, viable temperature time paths for the region can be determined. Through inverse and forward modeling, preliminary rift flank (U-Th)/He ages correspond to post-Grenville cooling with <4 km of post-Carboniferous burial. The data define slow and long episodes of syn- to post-rift cooling with rates between 0.4 and 0.1 °C/Ma. (U-Th)/He dating of samples along the full-length of the transect

  11. New Model of the Midcontinent Rift in Eastern Minnesota and Western Wisconsin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McSwiggen, Peter L.; Morey, G. B.; Chandler, Val W.

    1987-12-01

    The Midcontinent rift contains a central zone of mostly volcanic and associated intrusive rocks. Flanking, and in places overlying, these mafic igneous rocks are clastic sedimentary basins which range in thickness from less than 1.5 km southwest of the west end of Lake Superior to more than 3.0 km near the Minnesota-Iowa border. New gravity and magnetic modeling of the rift has shown that most of the volcanic and intrusive rocks are contained within a central block, which in Minnesota and Wisconsin extends to a depth of at least 10 to 20 km. The geometry of this central block, which ranges from fairly symmetric to very asymmetric, appears to reflect a change from predominantly a graben to only a half-graben development. The modeling has also suggested the presence of a major prerift intrusive body along the Minnesota-Iowa border which could have locally controlled the rift's development.

  12. Failure was not an option- the Mid-Continent Rift system succeeded

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Merino, M.; Stein, C. A.; Stein, S. A.; Keller, G. R.; Flesch, L. M.; Jurdy, D. M.

    2013-12-01

    The 1.1 Ga Mid-Continent Rift (MCR) in North America is often viewed as a failed rift formed by isolated midplate volcanism and extension within the ~1.3-~0.98 Ga Grenville orogeny. An alternative view is suggested by analogy with younger and morphologically similar rift systems, whose plate tectonic settings are more easily understood because their surroundings - including seafloor with magnetic anomalies - have not been deformed or destroyed by subsequent collisions and rifting events. In this view, the MCR was part of a larger plate boundary rifting event that resulted in a successful episode of seafloor spreading. This view is motivated by various pieces of evidence. The MCR rifting looks much like rigid plate block motion, such as associated with the West Central African Rift systems formed during the Mesozoic breakup of Africa and South America and the ongoing rifting in the East African Rift region with seafloor spreading in the Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea. This view explains the affinities of the Grenville-age rocks in the central and southern Appalachians to Amazonia rather than Canadian Grenville-age Appalachian rocks. The MCR extends farther to the south than traditionally assumed along the East Continental Gravity High (a buried feature from Ohio to Alabama). This failed portion of the rift system connected to the rift successfully separating Laurentia and Amazonia. The seafloor spreading separating Amazonia from Laurentia may explain the former's relative motion toward Greenland and Baltica. This model is consistent with some of the ~1.1 Ga geological events in Amazonia. A change in the apparent polar wander path for Laurentia during the period of volcanism of the MCR could be attributed to this plate reconfiguration. The extensional phase on the MCR may have ended because motion was taken up by seafloor spreading between Laurentia and Amazonia rather ending due to another continental collision. Later reverse faulting on the MCR normal faults due to

  13. Abrupt plate accelerations shape rifted continental margins.

    PubMed

    Brune, Sascha; Williams, Simon E; Butterworth, Nathaniel P; Müller, R Dietmar

    2016-08-11

    Rifted margins are formed by persistent stretching of continental lithosphere until breakup is achieved. It is well known that strain-rate-dependent processes control rift evolution, yet quantified extension histories of Earth's major passive margins have become available only recently. Here we investigate rift kinematics globally by applying a new geotectonic analysis technique to revised global plate reconstructions. We find that rifted margins feature an initial, slow rift phase (less than ten millimetres per year, full rate) and that an abrupt increase of plate divergence introduces a fast rift phase. Plate acceleration takes place before continental rupture and considerable margin area is created during each phase. We reproduce the rapid transition from slow to fast extension using analytical and numerical modelling with constant force boundary conditions. The extension models suggest that the two-phase velocity behaviour is caused by a rift-intrinsic strength--velocity feedback, which can be robustly inferred for diverse lithosphere configurations and rheologies. Our results explain differences between proximal and distal margin areas and demonstrate that abrupt plate acceleration during continental rifting is controlled by the nonlinear decay of the resistive rift strength force. This mechanism provides an explanation for several previously unexplained rapid absolute plate motion changes, offering new insights into the balance of plate driving forces through time. PMID:27437571

  14. The Lake Albert Rift (uganda, East African Rift System): Deformation, Basin and Relief Evolution Since 17 Ma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brendan, Simon; François, Guillocheau; Cécile, Robin; Olivier, Dauteuil; Thierry, Nalpas; Martin, Pickford; Brigitte, Senut; Philippe, Lays; Philippe, Bourges; Martine, Bez

    2016-04-01

    .5 Ma: Rift stage 1 (subsidence rate: > 500m/Ma up to 600-800 m/Ma; sedimentation rate: 2.4 km3/Ma) - Rifting climax; - 2.5-0.4 Ma: uplift of the Ruwenzori Mountains and shifting from an alluvial system to a network of bedrock river incision - Rift Stage 2 (subsidence rate: 450 to 250 m/Ma; sedimentation rate: 1.5 km3/Ma); - 0.4-0 Ma: long wavelength downwarping of the Tanzanian Craton, initiation of the Lake Victoria trough, drainage network inversion and uplift of the present-day Ugandan escarpment (normal faulting motion of the border faults) with formation of perched valleys associated to the Lower Pleistocene (2.5-0.4 Ma) rivers network. At larger scale, comparison of the Lake Albert Rift evolution with the data available in the basins of both eastern and western branches of the East African Rift System shows that most of the sedimentary basins experienced the same geometrical evolution from large basins with limited fault controls during Late Miocene to narrow true rift in Late Pleistocene (e.g. Northern and Central Kenyan Basins), in agreement with the volcanism distribution, large (width >100 km) during the Miocene times, narrower (width x10 km) from Late Pliocene to Pleistocene times and today limited to narrow rifts.

  15. Boundary separating the seismically active reelfoot rift from the sparsely seismic Rough Creek graben, Kentucky and Illinois

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wheeler, R.L.

    1997-01-01

    The Reelfoot rift is the most active of six Iapetan rifts and grabens in central and eastern North America. In contrast, the Rough Creek graben is one of the least active, being seismically indistinguishable from the central craton of North America. Yet the rift and graben adjoin. Hazard assessment in the rift and graben would be aided by identification of a boundary between them. Changes in the strikes of single large faults, the location of a Cambrian transfer zone, and the geographic extent of alkaline igneous rocks provide three independent estimates of the location of a structural boundary between the rift and the graben. The boundary trends north-northwest through the northeastern part of the Fluorspar Area Fault Complex of Kentucky and Illinois, and has no obvious surface expression. The boundary involves the largest faults, which are the most likely to penetrate to hypocentral depths, and the boundary coincides with the geographic change from abundant seismicity in the rift to sparse seismicity in the graben. Because the structural boundary was defined by geologic variables that are expected to be causally associated with seismicity, it may continue to bound the Reelfoot rift seismicity in the future.

  16. Structural evolution of the southern transfer zone of the Gulf of Suez rift, Egypt

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abd-Allah, Ali M. A.; Abdel Aal, Mohamed H.; El-Said, Mohamed M.; Abd El-Naby, Ahmed

    2014-08-01

    We present a detailed study about the initiation and reactivations of Zeit-El Tor transfer zone, south Gulf of Suez rift, and its structural setting and tectonic evolution with respect to the Cretaceous-Cenozoic tectonic movements in North Egyptian margin. NE trending zone of opposed-dipping faults (22 km wide) has transferred the NE and SW rotations of the sub-basins in central and south Gulf of Suez rift, respectively. The evolution of this zone started by reactivation of the NE oriented late Neoproterozoic fractures that controlled the occurrence of Dokhan Volcanics in the rift shoulders. Later, the Syrian Arc contraction reactivated these fractures by a sinistral transpression during the Late Cretaceous-Eocene time. N64°E extension of the Oligo-Miocene rift reactivated the NE fractures by a sinistral transtension. During this rifting, the NE trending faults forming the transfer zone were more active than the rift-bounding faults; the Upper Cretaceous reverse faults in the blocks lying between these NE trending faults were rotated; and drape-related reverse faults and the positive flower structures were formed. Tectonic inversion from contraction to extension controlled the distribution and thickness of the Upper Cretaceous-Miocene rocks.

  17. Continental rift evolution: From rift initiation to incipient break-up in the Main Ethiopian Rift, East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Corti, Giacomo

    2009-09-01

    The Main Ethiopian Rift is a key sector of the East African Rift System that connects the Afar depression, at Red Sea-Gulf of Aden junction, with the Turkana depression and Kenya Rift to the South. It is a magmatic rift that records all the different stages of rift evolution from rift initiation to break-up and incipient oceanic spreading: it is thus an ideal place to analyse the evolution of continental extension, the rupture of lithospheric plates and the dynamics by which distributed continental deformation is progressively focused at oceanic spreading centres. The first tectono-magmatic event related to the Tertiary rifting was the eruption of voluminous flood basalts that apparently occurred in a rather short time interval at around 30 Ma; strong plateau uplift, which resulted in the development of the Ethiopian and Somalian plateaus now surrounding the rift valley, has been suggested to have initiated contemporaneously or shortly after the extensive flood-basalt volcanism, although its exact timing remains controversial. Voluminous volcanism and uplift started prior to the main rifting phases, suggesting a mantle plume influence on the Tertiary deformation in East Africa. Different plume hypothesis have been suggested, with recent models indicating the existence of deep superplume originating at the core-mantle boundary beneath southern Africa, rising in a north-northeastward direction toward eastern Africa, and feeding multiple plume stems in the upper mantle. However, the existence of this whole-mantle feature and its possible connection with Tertiary rifting are highly debated. The main rifting phases started diachronously along the MER in the Mio-Pliocene; rift propagation was not a smooth process but rather a process with punctuated episodes of extension and relative quiescence. Rift location was most probably controlled by the reactivation of a lithospheric-scale pre-Cambrian weakness; the orientation of this weakness (roughly NE-SW) and the Late

  18. Imaging the midcontinent rift beneath Lake Superior using large aperture seismic data

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Trehu, Anne M.; Morel-a-l'Huissier, Patrick; Meyer, R.; Hajnal, Z.; Karl, J.; Mereu, R. F.; Sexton, J.; Shay, J.; Chan, W. K.; Epili, D.; Jefferson, T.; Shih, X. R.; Wendling, S.; Milkereit, B.; Green, A.; Hutchinson, Deborah R.

    1991-01-01

    We present a detailed velocity model across the 1.1 billion year old Midcontinent Rift System (MRS) in central Lake Superior. The model was derived primarily from onshore-offshore large-aperture seismic and gravity data. High velocities obtained within a highly reflective half-graben that was imaged on coincident seismic reflection data demonstrate the dominantly mafic composition of the graben fill and constrain its total thickness to be at least 30km. Strong wide-angle reflections are observed from the lower crust and Moho, indicating that the crust is thickest (55–60km) beneath the axis of the graben. The total crustal thickness decreases rapidly to about 40 km beneath the south shore of the lake and decreases more gradually to the north. Above the Moho is a high-velocity lower crust interpreted to result from syn-rift basaltic intrusion into and/or underplating beneath the Archean lower crust. The lower crust is thickest beneath the axis of the main rift half-graben. A second region of thick lower crust is found approximately 100km north of the axis of the rift beneath a smaller half graben that is interpreted to reflect an earlier stage of rifting. The crustal model presented here resembles recent models of some passive continental margins and is in marked contrast to many models of both active and extinct Phanerozoic continental rift zones. It demonstrates that the Moho is a dynamic feature, since the pre-rift Moho is probably within or above the high-velocity lower crust, whereas the post-rift Moho is defined as the base of this layer. In the absence of major tectonic activity, however, the Moho is very stable, since the large, abrupt variations in crustal thickness beneath the MRS have been preserved for at least a billion years.

  19. Rio Grande rift: problems and perspectives

    SciTech Connect

    Baldridge, W.S.; Olsen, K.H.; Callender, J.F.

    1984-01-01

    Topics and ideas addressed include: (1) the regional extent of the Rio Grande rift; (2) the structure of the crust and upper mantle; (3) whether the evidence for an axile dike in the lower crust is compelling; (4) the nature of faulting and extension in the crust; and (5) the structural and magmatic development of the rift. 88 references, 5 figures.

  20. Rifting in iceland: new geodetic data.

    PubMed

    Decker, R W; Einarsson, P; Mohr, P A

    1971-08-01

    Small but measurable lengthening of several survey lines within the eastern rift zone of Iceland occurred between 1967 and 1970. The changes can be interpreted as a widening of the rift by 6 to 7 centimeters, possibly during the 1970 eruption of Hekla volcano. PMID:17738437

  1. Detection and Response for Rift Valley fever

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever is a viral disease that impacts domestic livestock and humans in Africa and the Middle East, and poses a threat to military operations in these areas. We describe a Rift Valley fever Risk Monitoring website, and its ability to predict risk of disease temporally and spatially. We al...

  2. Petrological and seismic studies of the lithosphere in the earthquake swarm region Vogtland/NW Bohemia, central Europe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Geissler, W. H.; Kämpf, H.; Seifert, W.; Dulski, P.

    2007-01-01

    New petrological and geochemical data of upper mantle and lower crustal xenoliths from a Quaternary tephra deposit in Mýtina, Czech Republic, are discussed in the frame of previous geophysical results (receiver functions, reflection seismology) of the western Eger/Ohře Rift area. The Vogtland/NW Bohemia region is well known for intraplate earthquake swarms, which are usually associated with volcanic activity. As previously reported, 3He/ 4He data of CO 2 emissions in mofettes and mineral-water springs point at ongoing magmatic processes in this area. Using teleseismic P receiver functions, an approximately 40-km-wide Moho updoming (from 31 to 27 km) and indications for a seismic discontinuity at 50 to 60 km depth were observed beneath the active CO 2-degassing field. The studied xenolith suite probes a lithospheric profile within the structural and gas geochemical anomaly field of the western Eger Rift. With regard to texture, composition, p- T estimates and origin, five xenolith groups can be discriminated. Upper crustal xenoliths (quartzites, phyllites, mica schists) resemble crystalline country rocks at surface. One noritic xenolith (6 kbar, 800 °C) could represent a sample of the lower crust. Clinopyroxenites and hornblendites probably represent cumulates of the nephelinitic magma or fragments of magmatic veins. Porous wehrlites and one hornblende peridotite xenolith reflect a metasomatied upper mantle. Megacrysts of Ti-rich amphibole, olivine, clinopyroxene, and phlogopite could be fragments of pegmatitic veins or high-pressure phenocrysts. Most of the ultramafic nodules (xenoliths and megacrysts) formed at pressures between 6 and 11 kbar (22 to 38 km depth), at temperatures well above regional geotherms of the Bohemian Massif calculated from surface heat flow studies. Orthopyroxene-bearing spinel-lherzolite xenoliths were not observed. Our petrographical, geochemical, and thermobarometric results indicate a lithospheric mantle strongly altered by magmatic

  3. The development of the Midcontinent Rift in the context of rapid paleogeographic change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Swanson-Hysell, N.; Vaughn, A. A.; Mustain, M. R.; Feinberg, J. M.

    2012-12-01

    Despite being active for >20 million years and resulting in the thinning of pre-rift crust by a factor of 3 or more, the 1.1 Ga Midcontinent Rift failed to dismember the Laurentian craton. This failure resulted in the preservation of a thick record of rift-related volcanic and sedimentary rocks that give geoscientists a powerful window into the development of this ancient rift. Most models for the development of the Midcontinent Rift attribute its origin to the upwelling and decompression melting of a mantle plume. On the basis of the great volume of generated magma and interpretation of geochemical data, it is argued that the early stage plateau flood basalts of the rift (~1110-1105 Ma) and the main stage volcanics that erupted into the central basin (~1100-1095 Ma) were both dominated by plume-sourced melts. However, this model needs to be reconciled with paleomagnetic data from rift volcanics that reveal a significant decrease in inclination between the early and main stage volcanics. New data we have developed from 90+ flows of the early stage Osler Volcanic Group bolster evidence from the succession at Mamainse Point that this change in inclination is the result of fast equatorward plate motion during the early stage and into the main stage of rift volcanism. Even with >20° of latitudinal motion from the time of initial volcanism to eruption of the thick main stage volcanics, magmatism was largely confined to the same geographic region in a relatively narrow central basin. If a long-lived plume was in a fixed position relative to Earth's spin axis, the large relative motion of Laurentia would make it unable to continue to be a source of melt to the rift. Two possible explanations to reconcile a plume-contribution in the main stage with this latitudinal change are: (1) That the active contribution from an underlying plume was limited to the early stage of volcanism, but substantial volume of material accreted to the lithosphere that was subsequently sampled

  4. Diking-induced moderate-magnitude earthquakes on a youthful rift border fault: The 2002 Nyiragongo-Kalehe sequence, D.R. Congo

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wauthier, C.; Smets, B.; Keir, D.

    2015-12-01

    On 24 October 2002, Mw 6.2 earthquake occurred in the central part of the Lake Kivu basin, Western Branch of the East African Rift. This is the largest event recorded in the Lake Kivu area since 1900. An integrated analysis of radar interferometry (InSAR), seismic and geological data, demonstrates that the earthquake occurred due to normal-slip motion on a major preexisting east-dipping rift border fault. A Coulomb stress analysis suggests that diking events, such as the January 2002 dike intrusion, could promote faulting on the western border faults of the rift in the central part of Lake Kivu. We thus interpret that dike-induced stress changes can cause moderate to large-magnitude earthquakes on major border faults during continental rifting. Continental extension processes appear complex in the Lake Kivu basin, requiring the use of a hybrid model of strain accommodation and partitioning in the East African Rift.

  5. Rifted Continental Margins: The Case for Depth-Dependent Extension

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huismans, Ritske S.; Beaumont, Christopher

    2015-04-01

    Even though many basic properties of non-volcanic rifted margins are predicted by uniform extension of the lithosphere, uniform extension fails to explain other important characteristics. Particularly significant discrepancies are observed at: 1) the Iberia-Newfoundland conjugate margins (Type I), where large tracts of continental mantle lithosphere are exposed at the seafloor, and at; 2) ultra-wide central South Atlantic margins (Type II) where continental crust spans wide regions below which it appears that lower crust and mantle lithosphere were removed. Neither corresponds to uniform extension in which crust and mantle thin by the same factor. Instead, either the crust or mantle lithosphere has been preferentially removed during extension. We show that the Type I and II styles are respectively reproduced by dynamical numerical lithospheric stretching models (Models I-A/C and II-A/C) that undergo depth-dependent extension. In this notation A and C imply underplating of the rift zone during rifting by asthenosphere and lower cratonic lithosphere, respectively. We also present results for models with a weak upper crust and strong lower crust, Models III-A/C, to show that lower crust can also be removed from beneath the rift zone by horizontal advection with the mantle lithosphere. From the model results we infer that these Types I, II, and III margin styles are controlled by the strength of the mid/lower crust, which determines the amount of decoupling between upper and lower lithosphere during extension and the excision of crust or mantle. We also predict the styles of sedimentary basins that form on these margins as a test of the concepts presented.

  6. Seismic Evidence for an Active Southern Rio Grande Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thompson, L. E.; Velasco, A. A.

    2010-12-01

    Competing models exist to explain what caused the Earth’s crust to spread apart 29 million years ago to create a region known today as the Rio Grande Rift (RGR). The RGR extends from central Colorado through New Mexico to northern Mexico, near El Paso. A growing body of evidence shows that geologic activity still occurs in the RGR, with a continuation of faulting, seismicity and a small widening rate. We map of the seismic velocity structure and crustal thickness using data from the Rio Grande Rift Seismic TRAnsect (RISTRA) experiment and the EarthScope Transportable Array (USArray) dataset. In addition to the data we collected from the RISTRA experiment and USArray dataset, we also acquired receiver functions from the EarthScope Automatic Receiver Survey (EARS) website (http://www.earthscope.org/data) and waveform data from the Incorporated Research Institutes for Seismology (IRIS) Data Management Center (DMC). In particular, we requested seismograms from the IRIS DMC database where we acquired teleseismic events from Jan 2000 to Dec 2009. This includes 7,259 seismic events with a minimum magnitude of 5.5 and 106,389 continuous waveforms. This data was preprocessed (merged, rotated) using a program called Standing Order of Data (SOD). We computed receiver functions and receiver function stacks for all data in the Southern Rio Grande Rift (SRGR). We map the crustal thickness, seismic velocity, and mantle structure to better determine the nature of tectonic activity that is presently taking place and further investigate the regional extension of the Southern Rio Grande Rift (SRGR). Here we present results of the crustal and velocity structure using the kriging interpolation scheme and interpret our results in relation to southern RGR deformation and extension.

  7. Cenozoic thermal, mechanical and tectonic evolution of the Rio Grande rift

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morgan, P.; Seager, W. R.; Golombek, M. P.

    1986-01-01

    Two areas of New Mexico which exhibit complex but similar Cenozoic histories of extensional tectonism are analyzed. The first study area is the Basin and Range province and southern Rio Gande rift in southern New Mexico; the second study area is the central Rio Grande rift in central and northern New Mexico, the southern San Luis basin, the Espanola basin, and the Albuquerque basin. Two phases of extension were identified: the first phase which began in mid-Oligocene was characterized by local high-strain extension events, low-angle faulting, and the development of broad, shallow basins, all indicating an approximately NE-SW + or - 25 deg extension direction; the later phase which occurred primarily in the late Miocene, was characterized by synchronous, high-angle faulting, resulting in large vertical strains which produced the modern Rio Grande rift morphology. Extension direction was approximately E-W. Geotherms were estimated and lithospheric strength curves were calculated for these two phases of extension. A high geotherm was deduced for the early phase resulting in a shallow crustal brittle transition, and insignificant mantle strength. The lithosphere subsequently cooled, resulting in a significant zone of mantle strength beneath the Moho. It is concluded that the interrelationship among regional and local prerifting, synrifting, and postrifting events in the Rio Grande rift attests to the fact that the rifting (in the region studied) should be considered in the context of other geologic events.

  8. Ambient noise tomography of the East African Rift in Mozambique

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Domingues, Ana; Silveira, Graça; Ferreira, Ana M. G.; Chang, Sung-Joon; Custódio, Susana; Fonseca, João F. B. D.

    2016-03-01

    Seismic ambient noise tomography is applied to central and southern Mozambique, located in the tip of the East African Rift (EAR). The deployment of MOZART seismic network, with a total of 30 broad-band stations continuously recording for 26 months, allowed us to carry out the first tomographic study of the crust under this region, which until now remained largely unexplored at this scale. From cross-correlations extracted from coherent noise we obtained Rayleigh wave group velocity dispersion curves for the period range 5-40 s. These dispersion relations were inverted to produce group velocity maps, and 1-D shear wave velocity profiles at selected points. High group velocities are observed at all periods on the eastern edge of the Kaapvaal and Zimbabwe cratons, in agreement with the findings of previous studies. Further east, a pronounced slow anomaly is observed in central and southern Mozambique, where the rifting between southern Africa and Antarctica created a passive margin in the Mesozoic, and further rifting is currently happening as a result of the southward propagation of the EAR. In this study, we also addressed the question concerning the nature of the crust (continental versus oceanic) in the Mozambique Coastal Plains (MCP), still in debate. Our data do not support previous suggestions that the MCP are floored by oceanic crust since a shallow Moho could not be detected, and we discuss an alternative explanation for its ocean-like magnetic signature. Our velocity maps suggest that the crystalline basement of the Zimbabwe craton may extend further east well into Mozambique underneath the sediment cover, contrary to what is usually assumed, while further south the Kaapval craton passes into slow rifted crust at the Lebombo monocline as expected. The sharp passage from fast crust to slow crust on the northern part of the study area coincides with the seismically active NNE-SSW Urema rift, while further south the Mazenga graben adopts an N-S direction

  9. Along-rift Variations in Deformation and Magmatism in the Ethiopian and Afar Rift Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keir, D.; Bastow, I. D.; Corti, G.; Mazzarini, F.; Rooney, T. O.

    2015-12-01

    The geological record at rifts and margins worldwide often reveals along-strike variations in volumes of extruded and intruded igneous rocks. These variations may be the result of asthenospheric heterogeneity, variations in rate, and timing of extension; alternatively, preexisting plate architecture and/or the evolving kinematics of extension during breakup may exert first-order control on magmatism. The Ethiopian and Afar Rift systems provide an excellent opportunity to address this since it exposes, along strike, several sectors of asynchronous rift development from continental rifting in the south to incipient oceanic spreading in the north. Here we perform studies of distribution and style of volcanism and faulting along strike in the MER and Afar. We also incorporate synthesis of geophysical, geochemical, and petrological constraints on magma generation and emplacement in order to discriminate between tectonic and mantle geodynamic controls on the geological record of a newly forming magmatic rift. Along-rift changes in extension by magma intrusion and plate stretching, and the three-dimensional focusing of melt where the rift dramatically narrows each influence igneous intrusion, volcanism and subsidence history. In addition, rift obliquity plays an important role in localizing intrusion into the crust beneath en echelon volcanic segments. Along-strike variations in volumes and types of igneous rocks found at rifted margins thus likely carry information about the development of strain during rifting, as well as the physical state of the convecting mantle at the time of breakup.

  10. Application of magnetotelluric in the modeling of underlying structure of Gour Oumelalen (Egere-Aleksod terrane, Central Hoggar, South of Algeria)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boukhalfa, Zakaria; Abderrezak, Bouzid; Khadidja, Ouzegane; Abderrahmane, Bendaoud; Mohamed, Hamoudi; Abdeslam, Abtout; Abdelhamid, Bendekken; Sofiane Said, Bougchiche; Walid, Boukhlouf; Abdelgharfour, Boukar; Aboubakr, Deramchi; Mohamed, Bendali; Abdenaceur, Lemgharbi; Mohammed, Djeddi

    2016-04-01

    The results of a magnetotelluric experiment crossing Ounane granodiorite to the east until the Amadror Wadi to the West, passing through Adrar Ounane in our study area are presented. The magnetotelluric field survey was carried out in the Gour Oumelalen (GO) area during March 2015. We deployed 34 magnetotelluric sites along two parallel EW profiles of a hundred km long. Time series were collected using a V5 system 2000® of Phoenix Geophysics. The first profile located to the north is composed of 18 braodband measurement sites obtained from merging magnetotelluri with audio-magnetotelluric (AMT) data. The second one located 10 km south of the first, is composed of 15 MT sites. An inter-station distance of ~5 km provides good lateral resolution. The MT time series were recorded during about 20 hours which allows to reach a depth of 100 km or more and the AMT data 30 minutes. This allows to get broadband magnetotelluric soundings with good quality data in period range from 0.001 s to 3000 s. In this study we will use the south profile data for modeling the underlying structure of GO. The crustal part of the model shows a resistance bloc, divided by conductive parts which can be interpreted as faults, as regards the lithospheric part it less resistant the upper part, the transition crust / mantle corresponding to MOHO is estimated at more or less 35 km.

  11. Deformation in a hyperslow oceanic rift: Insights from the tectonics of the São Miguel Island (Terceira Rift, Azores)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sibrant, A. L. R.; Marques, F. O.; Hildenbrand, A.; Boulesteix, T.; Costa, A. C. G.; Catalão, J.

    2016-02-01

    The evolution of hyperslow oceanic rifts, like the Terceira Rift (TR) in the Azores, is still poorly understood. Here we examine the distribution of strain and magmatism in the portion of the TR making up the Nubia-Eurasia plate boundary. We use São Miguel Island because it stretches most of the TR width, which allows to investigate the TR's architecture and shedding light on TR's age and mode of deformation. From topography and structural analysis, and new measurements of 380 faults and dikes, we show that (1) São Miguel has two main structural directions, N150 and N110, mostly concentrated in the eastern part of the island as an onshore continuation of the faults observed offshore in the NE (N110 faults) and SW (N140) TR walls; (2) a new N50-N80 fault system is identified in São Miguel; (3) fault and dike geometries indicate that eastern São Miguel comprises the TR's northern boundary, and the lack of major faults in central and western São Miguel indicates that rifting is mostly concentrated at master faults bounding the TR. Based on TR's geometry, structural observations and plate kinematics, we estimate that the TR initiated between 1.4 and 2.7 Ma ago and that there is no appreciable seafloor spreading associated with rifting. Based on plate kinematics, on the new structural data, and on São Miguel's structural and volcanic trends, we propose that the eastern two thirds of São Miguel lie along a main TR-related transform fault striking N70-N80, which connects two widely separated N130-N150 TR-trending segments.

  12. Cenozoic rift tectonics of the Japan Sea

    SciTech Connect

    Kimura, K.

    1988-08-01

    The Japan Sea is one of the back-arc basins in trench-arc systems bordering the western Pacific. Recent paleomagnetic works suggest the Japan Sea opened during early to middle Miocene. Radiometric and microfossil ages of the Cenozoic onland sequences in the Japanese Islands elucidate the rift tectonics of the Japan Sea. The rifting history is summarized as follows: nonmarine volcanic formations of prerift stage before 50 Ma, rift-onset unconformity at 40 Ma, nonmarine volcanic formations of synrift stage 20-33 Ma, breakup unconformity 19 Ma showing the opening of the Japan Sea, marine volcanic and sedimentary formations of synrift stage 14.5-18 Ma, beginning of regional subsidence 14.5 Ma corresponding to the end of the Japan Sea opening, marine sedimentary formations of postdrift stage after 14.5 Ma. Rifting is not limited to the synrift stage but is continued to the syndrift stage. Rifting led to a horst-and-graben structure. Thus, the Cenozoic onland sequences in the Japanese Islands are suited for a study of rift tectonics because the sequences were subaerially exposed by the late Miocene-Holocene island-arc tectonics. Rift tectonics cannot be studied as easily in most Atlantic-type passive margins.

  13. Evidence for small-scale mantle convection in the upper mantle beneath the Baikal rift zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Stephen S.; Liu, Kelly H.; Davis, Paul M.; Slack, Phillip D.; Zorin, Yuliy A.; Mordvinova, Valentina V.; Kozhevnikov, Vladimir M.

    2003-04-01

    Inversion of teleseismic P wave travel time residuals collected along a 1280-km-long profile traversing the Baikal rift zone (BRZ) reveals the existence of an upwarped lithosphere/asthenosphere interface, which causes a travel time delay of about 1 s at the rift axis ("central high"). An area with early arrivals relative to the stable Siberian platform of up to 0.5 s is observed on each side of the rift, about 200 km from the rift axis ("flank lows"). While the location of the central high is approximately fixed in the vicinity of the rift axis, those of the flank lows vary as much as 200 km with the azimuth of the arriving rays. We use three techniques to invert the travel time residuals for velocity anomalies beneath the profile. Two of the techniques assume an isotropic velocity structure, and one of them considers a transversely isotropic velocity model with a vertical axis of symmetry. We use independent geophysical observations such as gravity, active source seismic exploration, and crustal thickness measurements to compare the applicability of the models. Other types of geophysical measurements suggest that the model involving transverse isotropy is a plausible one, which suggests that the central high and flank lows are caused by the combined effects of an upwarped asthenosphere with a 2.5% lateral velocity reduction, and a velocity increase due to transverse isotropy with a vertical axis of symmetry. We consider the anisotropy to be the result of the vertical component of a lithosphere/asthenosphere small-scale mantle convection system that is associated with the rifting.

  14. Stages of Mesozoic rifting, magmatism, and salt deposition in the Eastern Gulf of Mexico inferred from a grid of deep-penetration seismic reflection data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hasan, M.; Mann, P.

    2013-12-01

    Previous investigations on the Mesozoic rift history of the Gulf of Mexico (GOM) have focused on the pre-rift, geometrical fits of continental crust in North America, Mexico, Chiapas, and Yucatan. Less emphasis has been placed on inferring the process of lithospheric thinning known from other, better studied, rifted margins including: 1) mantle plume vs. crustal controls on rifting; 2) magma-poor vs. magma-rich style; and 3) linking stratigraphic and/or uplift events to each stage of the rifting, including the deposition of massive evaporites. Observations based on interpretations of ~17,000 km of deep-penetration 2D seismic lines tied to wells lead to the following interpretations: 1) massive lava flows of 8 km in thickness and with eastward dips (seaward-dipping reflectors or 'SDR's') are mapped across a ~16,600 km2 area of Lloyd ridge in the northeastern GOM and formed prior to the formation of ocean floor in the deeper, central GOM; 2) stratigraphic correlations show that the SDR's show they are coeval or slightly later than massive salt deposition and late Jurassic sedimentary rocks, but younger than the formation of oceanic crust in the central GOM; 3) Eastern GOM is within ~600 km of the calculated center of the CAMP mantle plume head that created thickened oceanic crust beneath the Bahamas area; for this reason the presence of SDR's is a likely consequence of the CAMP plume although no core samples have been recovered to test the age and geochemistry of the volcanic rocks; and 4) the restoration of now misaligned, subsurface rifts present on the Yucatan block and in the Florida subsurface constrain the total CCW rotation of the Yucatan block to ~32°; rift orientations suggest that the rotation occurred in two phases: an earlier stage of NNW-SSE rifting that formed the original set of rifts followed by a later stage of ENE-WSW rifting that caused rifts in this orientation to become misaligned.

  15. Basalt volatile fluctuations during continental rifting: An example from the Rio Grande Rift, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rowe, Michael C.; Lassiter, John C.; Goff, Kathleen

    2015-05-01

    Hydration and metasomatism of the lithospheric mantle potentially influences both the magmatic and tectonic evolution of southwestern North America. Prior studies have suggested that volatile enrichments to the mantle underlying western North America resulted from shallow subduction of the Farallon Plate during the Laramide (˜74-40 Ma). This study examines temporal and spatial variations in volatile elements (H2O, Cl, F, and S) determined from olivine and orthopyroxene-hosted melt inclusions along and across the Rio Grande Rift, the easternmost extent of Laramide shallow subduction. Maximum chlorine enrichments are observed in the southern rift with a Cl/Nb of ˜210 and reduce with time to MORB-OIB levels (˜5-17). Measured water abundances are <0.8 wt % in rehomogenized inclusions; however, calculated H2O, based on Cl/Nb systematics, primarily varies from 0.5 to 2 wt % H2O. Sulfur abundances (<0.61 wt %), and calculated sulfide saturation, indicate magmas with high Cl/Nb also contain oxidized sulfur. The abundance of fluorine in melt inclusions (up to 0.2 wt %) is not correlated to other volatile elements. Temporal variations in melt inclusion volatile abundances coupled with varying isotopic (Sr-Nd-Pb) whole-rock systematics suggest a transition from lithospheric to asthenospheric melt generation in the southern RGR and potential lithosphere-asthenosphere melt mixing in the central RGR. East to west decrease in volatile enrichment likely reflects a combination of varying mantle sources and early removal of metasomatized lithospheric mantle underlying regional extension. Results indicate, from multiple causes, subduction-related volatile enrichment to the lithospheric mantle is ephemeral, and strong enrichments in volatiles are not preserved in active magmatic-tectonic provenances.

  16. 3D Dynamics of Oblique Rift Systems: Fault Evolution from Rift to Break-up

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brune, S.

    2014-12-01

    Rift evolution and passive margin formation has been thoroughly investigated using conceptual and numerical models in two dimensions. However, the 2D assumption that the extension direction is perpendicular to the rift trend is often invalid. In fact, the majority of rift systems that lead to continental break-up during the last 150 My involved moderate to high rift obliquity. Yet, the degree to which oblique lithospheric extension affects first-order rift and passive margin properties like surface stress pattern, fault azimuths, and basin geometry, is still not entirely clear. This contribution provides insight in crustal stress patterns and fault orientations by applying a 3D numerical rift model to oblique extensional settings. The presented forward experiments cover the whole spectrum of oblique extension (i.e. rift-orthogonal extension, low obliquity, high obliquity, strike-slip deformation) from initial deformation to breakup. They are conducted using an elasto-visco-plastic finite element model and involve crustal and mantle layers accounting for self-consistent necking of the lithosphere. Even though the model setup is very simple (horizontally layered, no inherited faults), its evolution exhibits a variety of fault orientations that are solely caused by the interaction of far-field stresses with rift-intrinsic buoyancy and strength. Depending on rift obliquity, these orientations involve rift-parallel, extension-orthogonal, and intermediate normal fault directions as well as strike-slip faults. Allowing new insights on fault patterns of the proximal and distal margins, the model shows that individual fault populations are activated in a characteristic multi-phase evolution driven by lateral density variations of the evolving rift system. Model results are in very good agreement with inferences from the well-studied Gulf of Aden and provide testable predictions for other rifts and passive margins worldwide.

  17. From hyper-extended rifts to orogens: the example of the Mauléon rift basin in the Western Pyrenees (SW France)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Masini, E.; Manatschal, G.; Tugend, J.

    2011-12-01

    -extended rift system. In our presentation, we discuss the compressional reactivation of the rift structures by the study of dip sections across the basin, from weakly reactivated sections in the west to strongly reactivated sections in the east. Comparing the sections, it results that the compression reactivated the rift structures (mainly the detachment faults) and that this reactivation occurred in 2 steps. It corresponds to the reactivation through time of the NMB before the SMB. This evolution is in line with an early proto-subduction of the hyper-extended domain beneath the European plate whereas the NMB sediments are wedged, folded and thrust onto the Iberia and Europe margins ("thin-skin" tectonics). The second step occurs when the deformation started to migrate southward resulting in the formation of the axial Pyrenees nappe stack (thick-skin tectonics). These results suggest that the inherited rift structures strongly controlled the initial convergence. Future work will revisit the more reactivated Albian basins throughout the chain to investigate how far the results from western Pyrenees can be used to understand the Central and Eastern Pyrenees. Moreover, this field-oriented study can serve as an example of how rift structures may control style and timing of orogenic processes.

  18. Volcanic and Structural History of the NE Rift Zone of Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carracedo, J.; Guillou, H.; Badiola, E. R.; Torrado, F. P.; Troll, V.; Delcamp, A.; Paris, R.; Gonzalez, A. R.

    2008-12-01

    The NE Rift of Tenerife is an excellent example of a persistent, recurrent rift, providing important evidence on the origin and dynamics of these major volcanic features. The rift developed in three successive, intense and relatively short eruptive stages (a few hundred ka), separated by longer periods of quiescence or reduced activity: A Miocene stage (7203+/-155ka), apparently extending the central Miocene shield of Tenerife towards the Anaga massif; an Upper Pliocene stage (2710+/-58ka) and the latest stage, with the main eruptive phase, in the Pleistocene. Detailed geological (GIS) mapping, geomagnetic reversal mapping and stratigraphic correlation, and radioisotopic (K/Ar) dating of volcanic formations allowed the reconstruction of the latest period of rift activity. In the early phases of this stage the majority of the eruptions grouped tightly along the axis of the rift and show reverse polarity (corresponding to the Matuyama). Dykes are of normal and reverse polarities. In the final phase of activity, eruptions are more disperse and lavas and dykes are consistently of normal polarity (Brunhes). Volcanic units of normal polarity crossed by dykes of normal and reverse polarities yield ages apparently compatible with normal events (M-B Precursor and Jaramillo) in the Upper Matuyama epoch. Three lateral collapses successively mass-wasted the rift: The Micheque collapse, completely concealed by subsequent nested volcanism, and the Güímar and La Orotava collapses, that are only partially filled. Pre- collapse and nested volcanism is predominantly basaltic, except in the Micheque collapse, where magmas evolved towards intermediate and felsic (trachytic) compositions. Rifts in the Canary Islands are long-lasting, recurrent features, probably related to primordial, plume-related fractures acting throughout the entire growth of the islands. Basaltic volcanism forms the bulk of the islands and rift zones. However, collapses of the flanks of the rifts disrupt their

  19. The Role of Rift Obliquity in Formation of the Gulf of California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bennett, Scott Edmund Kelsey

    The Gulf of California illustrates how highly oblique rift geometries, where transform faults are kinematically linked to large-offset normal faults in adjacent pull-apart basins, enhance the ability of continental lithosphere to rupture and, ultimately, hasten the formation of new oceanic basins. The Gulf of California rift has accommodated oblique divergence of the Pacific and North America tectonic plates in northwestern Mexico since Miocene time. Due to its infancy, the rifted margins of the Gulf of California preserve a rare onshore record of early continental break-up processes from which to investigate the role of rift obliquity in strain localization. Using new high-precision paleomagnetic vectors from tectonically stable sites in north-central Baja California, I compile a paleomagnetic transect of Miocene ignimbrites across northern Baja California and Sonora that reveals the timing and distribution of dextral shear associated with inception of this oblique rift. I integrate detailed geologic mapping, basin analysis, and geochronology of pre-rift and syn-rift volcanic units to determine the timing of fault activity on Isla Tiburon, a proximal onshore exposure of the rifted North America margin, adjacent to the axis of the Gulf of California. The onset of strike-slip faulting on Isla Tiburon, ca. 8 - 7 Ma, was synchronous with the onset of transform faulting along a significant length of the nascent plate boundary within the rift. This tectonic transition coincides with a clockwise azimuthal shift in Pacific-North America relative motion that increased rift obliquity. I constrain the earliest marine conditions on southwest Isla Tiburon to ca. 6.4 - 6.0 Ma, coincident with a regional latest Miocene marine incursion in the northern proto-Gulf of California. This event likely flooded a narrow, incipient topographic depression along a ˜650 km-long portion of the latest Miocene plate boundary and corresponds in time and space with formation of a newly

  20. Rapid spatio-temporal variations in rift zone deformation, Corinth rift, Greece

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nixon, Casey; McNeill, Lisa; Bull, Jonathan; Henstock, Timothy; Bell, Rebecca; Gawthorpe, Robert; Christodoulou, Dimitris; Kranis, Haris; Ferentinos, George; Papatheodorou, George; Taylor, Brian; Ford, Mary; Sakellariou, Dimitris; Leeder, Mike; Collier, Richard; Goodliffe, Andrew; Sachpazi, Maria

    2015-04-01

    The Gulf of Corinth is a young and highly active rift (<5 Ma) in its initial stages of development. An abundance of marine geophysical data and onshore exposures makes it an ideal case study for investigating early rift and fault development. Using a high resolution chronstratigraphic and rift fault model we investigate along strike variations in the basin development within the rift over the past 1-2 Myr and establishing a history of fault activity on major basin controlling faults, at temporal resolutions of ca. 100 kyr or less. We focus on variations in depocentre development and the distribution of displacement and faulting along and across the rift axis; focussing on the partitioning of deformation between N-dipping and S-dipping faults. The rift basin geometry has a complex history and varies spatially along strike of the rift. We highlight a major change in rift structure ca. 600 ka, changing from a complex rift zone to a uniform asymmetric graben. Syn-rift isochore maps identify two stages that accommodate this change: 1. a switch in rift polarity from a dominant N-thickening depocentre to a dominant S-thickening depocentre between ca. 620-420 ka (a rapid change in rift structure and strain distribution). This change is accommodated by transfer of activity between major faults but also by formation of numerous non-basement cutting small faults. 2. Progressive localization of deformation onto major N-dipping faults on the rift's southern margin. This is characterised by depocentre growth and linkage and increased activity on major N-dipping faults since ~340 ka, with faults becoming kinematically and geometrically linked with almost equal slip rates along strike by ca. 130 ka. Ultimately our results show that the early evolution of a rift fault network can be complex but that a dominant fault set eventually forms even in the earliest stages of rifting. Furthermore a switch in rift polarity is a progressive process with deformation becoming distributed before

  1. Geochemical signals of progressive continental rupture in the Main Ethiopian Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Furman, T.; Bryce, J.; Yirgu, G.; Ayalew, D.; Cooper, L.

    2003-04-01

    with values observed previously in central Ethiopia that are associated with moderately high 3He/4He values (<19 RA; Marty et al. 1996) and interpreted as reflecting involvement of a mantle plume. Taken together, these data support a model in which upwelling plume material sampled in central Ethiopia incorporates depleted mantle during ascent beneath the more highly extended portions of the African Rift.

  2. Stratigraphy, structure, and extent of the East Continent Rift Basin

    SciTech Connect

    Wickstrom, L.H. )

    1992-01-01

    The proven existence of pre-Mt. Simon sedimentary rocks named the Middle Run Formation in southwestern Ohio led to the establishment of the Cincinnati Arch Consortium, a joint industry-government partnership to investigate the areal extent, nature, and origin of this new unit. Utilizing available well, seismic, and potential-field data, the consortium has shown that the Middle Run was deposited in a Precambrian rift basin, named the East Continent Rift Basin (ECRB). These data indicate the ECRB assemblage consists of a large folded and faulted wedge of interlayered volcanic and sedimentary rocks, unconformably overlain by Cambrian strata. This wedge is estimated to be thickest (up to about 22,000 feet) on the western edge, where it is in fault contact with Grenville Province rocks. To the west, the ECRB may extend as far as central Illinois and postdates the Precambrian Granite-Rhyolite Province rocks. The contact between the ECRB and this older province appears to be in part an angular unconformity and in part block faulted. The northern limit of this basin was not encountered in the study area; this may indicate a connection with the Midcontinent Rift in Michigan. In central Kentucky, the boundary conditions are more complex. It appears that the ECRB is constricted between a large block of the Granite-Rhyolite Province to the west and the Grenville Front on the east. Large Cambrian extensional structures (Rough Creek Graben and Rome Trough) were overprinted on the Granite-Rhyolite and Grenville Provinces. The ECRB may have acted as a stable block between these Cambrian features. The relationships of the ECRB to overlying Paleozoic features may be profound. Indeed, the ECRB may prove to be the reason for the very existence of the Cincinnati and Kankakee Arches.

  3. Iowa portion of rift trend hosts wildcats

    SciTech Connect

    McCaslin, J.C.

    1984-05-07

    Definite signs point to an exploratory effort beginning at the far southwestern end of Iowa's Keweenawan rift - a new frontier for oil and gas hunters. This new round of wildcatting is located on the Midcontinent rift trend, a major geological feature extending to great depths under parts of Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota (the Keweenawan rift system), Iowa, Nebraska, Missouri, and Kansas. Recent reports hint that leasing is underway in Minnesota, with interest developing in Iowa, Missouri, and Nebraska sectors. Geophysical evidence has led to the delineation of a rift system active during the Proterozoic Y era. Geologists have traced this system by the Midcontinent gravity high and corresponding aeromagnetic signature from the surface exposure of the Keweenawan supergroup in the Lake Superior basin southwest in the subsurface through the northern Midcontinent states.

  4. The inverted Triassic rift of the Marrakech High Atlas: A reappraisal of basin geometries and faulting histories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Domènech, Mireia; Teixell, Antonio; Babault, Julien; Arboleya, Maria-Luisa

    2015-11-01

    The High Atlas of Morocco is an aborted rift developed during the Triassic-Jurassic and moderately inverted during the Cenozoic. The Marrakech High Atlas, with large exposures of basement and Triassic early syn-rift deposits, is ideal to investigate the geometries of the deepest parts of a rift, constituting a good analogue for pre-salt domains. It allows unraveling geometries and kinematics of the extensional and compressional structures and the influence that they exert over one another. A detailed structural study of the main Triassic basins and basin-margin faults of the Marrakech High Atlas shows that only a few rift faults were reactivated during the Cenozoic compressional stage in contrast to previous interpretations, and emphasizes that fault reactivation cannot be taken for granted in inverted rift systems. Preserved extensional features demonstrate a dominant dip-slip opening kinematics with strike-slip playing a minor role, at variance to models proposing a major strike-slip component along the main basin-bounding faults, including faults belonging to the Tizi n'Test fault zone. A new Middle Triassic paleogeographic reconstruction shows that the Marrakech High Atlas was a narrow and segmented orthogonal rift (sub-perpendicular to the main regional extension direction which was ~ NW-SE), in contrast to the central and eastern segments of the Atlas rift which developed obliquely. This difference in orientation is attributed to the indented Ouzellarh Precambrian salient, part of the West African Craton, which deflected the general rift trend in the area evidencing the major role of inherited lithospheric anisotropies in rift direction and evolution. As for the Cenozoic inversion, total orogenic shortening is moderate (~ 16%) and appears accommodated by basement-involved large-scale folding, and by newly formed shortcut and by-pass thrusting, with rare left-lateral strike-slip indicators. Triassic faults commonly acted as buttresses.

  5. From Rifting of a volcanic province to Oceanic Spreading in the Andaman Sea, South-East Asia.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jourdain, A.; Singh, S. C.; Klinger, Y.

    2015-12-01

    The Andaman Sea is an enigmatic feature in the Indian Ocean region. It contains the volcanic provinces of Alcock and Sewell Rises and an active spreading center. The recent rifting in the Andaman Sea initiated 4.5 Ma ago, rifting the Alcock and Seawell Rises that were formed by extensive volcanism between 23-16 Ma. The spreading started with a full spreading rate of 1.6 cm/yr and increased to 3.8 cm/yr in the last 2.5 Ma. We have access to high-resolution deep seismic reflection data crossing the whole spreading center from the rifted volcanic provinces to the spreading center. The data show the whole oceanic crust up to the Moho. The Andaman Sea is covered with a thick pile of sediments that record the tectonic history of the rift system up to the spreading axis, allowing to decipher the whole process from rifting to spreading for the first time. We see a very rapid phase of transition from the rifting of the rises to the spreading in less than 20 km. Then a succession of at least 7 half-grabens is well recorded by the sediments on both sides of the spreading center. These half grabens are separated by outward tilted low angle detachment faults, which form the base of steeply dipping normal faults due to stretching. These low angle faults seem to connect with axial magma chambers that control evolution of the rift valley. We find that new detachment faults develop every 350,000 years, forming a new rift valley. The images of active normal faults within the central rift valley allow us to quantify the formation of oceanic crust by tectonic versus magmatic processes.

  6. Discussion of Continental Rifts and Their Structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gilbert, M. C.

    2011-12-01

    When continental crust rifts, two chief modifications of that crust occur: 1)stretching of older, existing crust; 2)addition of new rift mass--sediments and mantle mafic units. However, paleorifts, such as the Cambrian Southern Oklahoma Aulacogen differ from neorifts, such as the East African. Much of this difference may be reflected in the nature of the lower rift crust. Stretching of the upper crust is accomplished primarily through faulting while the lower crust flows. Concurrently addition of sediments occurs in downdropped faulted blocks in the upper crust, and of mafic magmas risen and emplaced as intrusive layered complexes through the rift and as extrusive flows. All this happens in a regime of higher temperatures and higher heat flow. Consequences of this can include either melting of the stretched existing crust, or direct fractionation of rising mafic magma or melting of already crystallized mafic complexes, forming new silicic magmas. Geochemistry of these different magmatic bodies elucidates which of these possible processes seems dominant. Most geophysical studies of rifts have two results: 1)higher gravity anomalies indicating addition of new mafic masses, usually interpreted to be concentrated in the upper rift crust; and 2)seismic characteristics indicating crustal mottling and layering of the upper rift crust. What is not clearly indicated is nature of the lower crust, and of the mantle-crust contact (M discontinuity). Comparison of paleorifts and neorifts, and later geological history of paleorifts, suggests interesting interpretations of lower rift crust,especially in paleorifts, and some of the difficulties in sorting out answers.

  7. Crustal structure of the Southern Rio Grande rift determined from seismic refraction profiling

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sinno, Y. A.; Keller, G. R.; Harder, S. H.; Daggett, P. H.; Morgan, P.

    1986-01-01

    As part of a major cooperative seismic experiment, a series of seismic refraction profiles have been recorded in south-central New Mexico with the goal of determining the crustal structure in the southern Rio Grande rift. The data gathered greatly expand the seismic data base in the area, and consist of three interlocking regional profiles: a reversed E-W line across the rift, an unreversed N-S axial line, and an unreversed SW-SE line. The reversed E-W line shows no significant dip along the Moho (32 km thick crust) and a 7.7 km/s Pn velocity. Results from the N-S axial line and the NW-SE line indicate an apparent Pn velocity of 7.95 km/s and significant dip along the Moho with crustal thinning toward the south and southeast. When interpreted together, these data indicate a crustal thinning in the southern rift of 4-6 km with respect to the northern rift and the adjacent Basin and Range province, and establish the regional Pn velocity to be approximately 7.7 km/s. These results suggest that the Rio Grande rift can be identified as a crustal feature separate and distinct from the Basin and Range province.

  8. Incipient continental rifting: Insights from the Okavango Rift Zone, northwestern Botswana

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kinabo, Baraka Damas

    In this dissertation aeromagnetic, gravity, and Shuttle Radar Topography Mission Digital Elevation Model (SRTM DEM) data from the Okavango Rift Zone in northwest Botswana are used to map the distribution of rift and basement structures. The distribution of these structures provide useful insights into the early stages of continental rifting. The objectives of this study are (1) assessing the role of pre-existing structures on rift basin development, (2) characterizing the geometry of the nascent rift basins, (3) documenting fault growth and propagation patterns, and (4) investigating the border fault development. Potential field data especially aeromagnetic data are used to map out structures in the sediment covered basement, whereas SRTM DEM data express the surface morphology of the structures. The azimuth of rift faults parallel the orientation of the fold axes and the prominent foliation directions of the basement rocks. This indicates that pre-existing structures in the basement influenced the development of the rift structures. NE dipping faults consistently exhibit greater displacements than SE dipping faults, suggesting a developing half-graben geometry. Individual faults grow by along axis linkage of small segments that develop from soft linkage (under lapping to overlapping segments) to hard linkage (hooking, fused segments). Major rifts faults are also linking through transfer zones by the process of "fault piracy" to establish an immature border fault system. The relationships between scam heights and vertical throws reveal that the young and active faults are located outside the rift while the faults with no recent activities are in the middle suggesting that the rift is also growing in width. This study demonstrates the utility of potential field data and SRTM DEM to provide a 3-D view of incipient continental rifting processes such as fault growth and propagation.

  9. Magma paths at Piton de la Fournaise volcano: a synthesis of Hawaiian and Etnean rift zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Michon, Laurent; Ferrazzini, Valérie; Di Muro, Andrea; Chaput, Marie; Famin, Vincent

    2014-05-01

    On ocean basaltic volcanoes, magma transfer to the surface occurs along sub-vertical ascent from the mantle lithosphere through the oceanic crust and the volcanic edifice, eventually followed by lateral propagation along rift zones. We use a 17-years-long database of volcano-tectonic seismic events and a detailed mapping of the pyroclastic cones to determine the geometry and the dynamics of the magma paths intersecting the edifice of Piton de la Fournaise volcano. We show that the overall plumbing system, from about 30 km depth to the surface, is composed of two structural levels that feed distinct types of rift zones. The lower plumbing system has a southeastward (N120) orientation and permits magma transfer from the lithospheric mantle to the base of the La Réunion edifice (5 km bsl). The related rift zone is wide, linear, spotted by small to large pyroclastic cones and related lava flows and involving magma resulting from high-pressure fractionation of ol ± cpx and presents an eruption periodicity of around 200 years over the last 30 kyrs. Seismic data suggest that the long-lasting activity of this rift zone result from a regional NNE-SSW extension reactivating inherited lithospheric faults by the effect of underplating and/or thermal erosion of the mantle lithosphere. The upper plumbing system originates at the base of the edifice in the vertical continuity of the lower plumbing system. It feeds frequent (1 eruption every 9 months on average), short-lived summit and distal (flank) eruptions along summit and outer rift zones, respectively. Summit rift zones are short and present an orthogonal pattern restricted to the central active cone of Piton de la Fournaise whereas outer rift zones extend from inside the Enclos Fouqué caldera to the NE and SE volcano flanks. We show that the outer rift zones are genetically linked to the east flank seaward displacements, whose most recent events where detected in 2004 and 2007. The lateral movements are themselves

  10. 40Ar- 39Ar ages of intrusions in East Greenland: Rift-to-drift transition over the Iceland hotspot

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tegner, C.; Brooks, C. K.; Duncan, R. A.; Heister, L. E.; Bernstein, S.

    2008-03-01

    Sixteen 40Ar- 39Ar ages are presented for alkaline intrusions to appraise prolonged post-breakup magmatism of the central East Greenland rifted margin, the chronology of rift-to-drift transition, and the asymmetry of magmatic activity in the Northeast Atlantic Igneous Province. The alkaline intrusions mainly crop out in tectonic and magmatic lineaments orthogonal to the rifted margin and occur up to 100 km inland. The area south of the Kangerlussuaq Fjord includes at least four tectonic lineaments and the intrusions are confined to three time windows at 56-54 Ma, 50-47 Ma and 37-35 Ma. In the Kangerlussuaq Fjord, which coincides with a major tectonic lineament possibly the failed arm of a triple junction, the alkaline plutons span from 56 to 40 Ma. To the north and within the continental flood basalt succession, alkaline intrusions of the north-south trending Wiedemann Fjord-Kronborg Gletscher lineament range from 52 to 36 Ma. We show that post-breakup magmatism of the East Greenland rifted margin can be linked to reconfiguration of spreading ridges in the Northeast Atlantic. Northwards propagation of the proto-Kolbeinsey ridge rifted the Jan Mayen micro-continent away from central East Greenland and resulted in protracted rift-to-drift transition. The intrusions of the Wiedemann Fjord-Kronborg Gletscher lineament are interpreted as a failed continental rift system and the intrusions of the Kangerlussuaq Fjord as off-axis magmatism. The post-breakup intrusions south of Kangerlussuaq Fjord occur landward of the Greenland-Iceland Rise and are explained by mantle melting caused first by the crossing of the central East Greenland rifted margin over the axis of the Iceland mantle plume (50-47 Ma) and later by uplift associated with regional plate-tectonic reorganization (37-35 Ma). The Iceland mantle plume was instrumental in causing protracted rift-to-drift transition and post-breakup tholeiitic and alkaline magmatism on the East Greenland rifted margin, and asymmetry

  11. High Fluoride and Geothermal Activities In Continental Rift Zones, Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weldesenbet, S. F.; Wohnlich, S.

    2012-12-01

    The Central Main Ethiopian Rift basin is a continental rift system characterized by volcano-tectonic depression endowed with huge geothermal resource and associated natural geochemical changes on groundwater quality. Chemical composition of groundwater in the study area showed a well defined trend along flow from the highland and escarpment to the rift floor aquifer. The low TDS (< 500mg/l) Ca-Mg-HCO3 dominated water at recharge area in the highlands and escarpments evolve progressively into Ca-Na-HCO3 and Na-Ca-HCO3 type waters along the rift ward groundwater flow paths. These waters finally appear as moderate TDS (mean 960mg/l) Na-HCO3 type and as high TDS (> 1000 mg/l) Na-HCO3-Cl type in volcano-lacustrine aquifers of the rift floor. High concentrations of fluoride (up to 97.2 mg/l) and arsenic (up to 98μg/l) are recognized feature of groundwaters which occur mostly in the vicinity of the geothermal fields and the rift lakes in the basin. Fluoride and arsenic content of dry volcaniclastic sediments close to these areas are in the range 666-2586mg/kg and 10-13mg/kg respectively. The relationship between fluoride and calcium concentrations in groundwaters showed negative correlation. Near-equilibrium state attained between the mineral fluorite (CaF2) and the majority of fluoride-rich (>30mg/l) thermal groundwater and shallow cold groundwater. This indicated that the equilibrium condition control the high concentration of fluoride in the groundwaters. Whereas undersaturation state of fluorite in some relatively low-fluoride (<30mg/l) thermal waters indicated a dilution by cold waters. Laboratory batch leaching experiments showed that fast dissolution of fluoride from the sediment samples suddenly leached into the interacting water at the first one hour and then remain stable throughout the experiment. The concentrations of leached fluoride from the hot spring deposits, the lacustrine sediments, and the pyroclastic rock are usually low (1% of the total or less than

  12. Fluoride and Geothermal Activities In Continental Rift Zones, Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weldesenbet, S. F.

    2012-12-01

    The Central Main Ethiopian Rift basin is a continental rift system characterized by volcano-tectonic depression endowed with huge geothermal resource and associated natural geochemical changes on groundwater quality. Chemical composition of groundwater in the study area showed a well defined trend along flow from the highland and escarpment to the rift floor aquifer. The low TDS (< 500mg/l) Ca-Mg-HCO3 dominated water at recharge area in the highlands and escarpments evolve progressively into Ca-Na-HCO3 and Na-Ca-HCO3 type waters along the rift ward groundwater flow paths. These waters finally appear as moderate TDS (mean 960mg/l) Na-HCO3 type and as high TDS (> 1000 mg/l) Na-HCO3-Cl type in volcano-lacustrine aquifers of the rift floor. High concentrations of fluoride (up to 97.2 mg/l) and arsenic (up to 98μg/l) are recognized feature of groundwaters which occur mostly in the vicinity of the geothermal fields and the rift lakes in the basin. Fluoride and arsenic content of dry volcaniclastic sediments close to these areas are in the range 666-2586mg/kg and 10-13mg/kg respectively. The relationship between fluoride and calcium concentrations in groundwaters showed negative correlation. Near-equilibrium state attained between the mineral fluorite (CaF2) and the majority of fluoride-rich (>30mg/l) thermal groundwater and shallow cold groundwater. This indicated that the equilibrium condition control the high concentration of fluoride in the groundwaters. Whereas undersaturation state of fluorite in some relatively low-fluoride (<30mg/l) thermal waters indicated a dilution by cold waters. Laboratory batch leaching experiments showed that fast dissolution of fluoride from the sediment samples suddenly leached into the interacting water at the first one hour and then remain stable throughout the experiment. The concentrations of leached fluoride from the hot spring deposits, the lacustrine sediments, and the pyroclastic rock are usually low (1% of the total or less than

  13. Dynamics of continental rift propagation: the end-member modes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Van Wijk, J. W.; Blackman, D. K.

    2005-01-01

    An important aspect of continental rifting is the progressive variation of deformation style along the rift axis during rift propagation. In regions of rift propagation, specifically transition zones from continental rifting to seafloor spreading, it has been observed that contrasting styles of deformation along the axis of rift propagation are bounded by shear zones. The focus of this numerical modeling study is to look at dynamic processes near the tip of a weak zone in continental lithosphere. More specifically, this study explores how modeled rift behavior depends on the value of rheological parameters of the crust. A three-dimensional finite element model is used to simulate lithosphere deformation in an extensional regime. The chosen approach emphasizes understanding the tectonic forces involved in rift propagation. Dependent on plate strength, two end-member modes are distinguished. The stalled rift phase is characterized by absence of rift propagation for a certain amount of time. Extension beyond the edge of the rift tip is no longer localized but occurs over a very wide zone, which requires a buildup of shear stresses near the rift tip and significant intra-plate deformation. This stage represents a situation in which a rift meets a locked zone. Localized deformation changes to distributed deformation in the locked zone, and the two different deformation styles are balanced by a shear zone oriented perpendicular to the trend. In the alternative rift propagation mode, rift propagation is a continuous process when the initial crust is weak. The extension style does not change significantly along the rift axis and lengthening of the rift zone is not accompanied by a buildup of shear stresses. Model predictions address aspects of previously unexplained rift evolution in the Laptev Sea, and its contrast with the tectonic evolution of, for example, the Gulf of Aden and Woodlark Basin.

  14. The offshore East African Rift System: Structural framework at the toe of a juvenile rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Franke, Dieter; Jokat, Wilfried; Ladage, Stefan; Stollhofen, Harald; Klimke, Jennifer; Lutz, Ruediger; Mahanjane, Estevão. Stefane; Ehrhardt, Axel; Schreckenberger, Bernd

    2015-10-01

    The Cenozoic East African Rift System (EARS) extends from the Red Sea to Mozambique. Here we use seismic reflection and bathymetric data to investigate the tectonic evolution of the offshore branch of the EARS. The data indicate multiple and time transgressive neotectonic deformations along ~800 km of the continental margin of northern Mozambique. We observe a transition from a mature rift basin in the north to a juvenile fault zone in the south. The respective timing of deformation is derived from detailed seismic stratigraphy. In the north, a ~30 km wide and more than 150 km long, N-S striking symmetric graben initiated as half-graben in the late Miocene. Extension accelerated in the Pliocene, causing a continuous conjugate border fault and symmetric rift graben. Coevally, the rift started to propagate southward, which resulted in a present-day ~30 km wide half-graben, approximately 200 km farther south. Since the Pleistocene, the rift has continued to propagate another ~300 km, where the incipient rift is reflected by subrecent small-scale normal faulting. Estimates of the overall brittle extension of the matured rift range between 5 and 12 km, with an along-strike southward decrease of the extension rate. The offshore portion of the EARS evolves magma poor, similar to the onshore western branch. The structural evolution of the offshore EARS is suggested to be related to and controlled by differing inherited lithospheric fabrics. Preexisting fabrics may not only guide and focus extension but also control rift architecture.

  15. Combined 40Ar/39Ar and Fission-Track study of the Freetown Layered Igneous Complex, Freetown, Sierra Leone, West Africa: Implications for the Initial Break-up of Pangea to form the Central Atlantic Ocean and Insight into the Post-rift Evolution of the Sie

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barrie, Ibrahim; Wijbrans, Jan; Andriessen, Paul; Beunk, Frank; Strasser-King, Victor; Fode, Daniel

    2010-05-01

    good plateaus that range from 196.3 ± 3 Ma to 232.1 ± 9 Ma with the best-fit isochron plots showing a range from 193.3± 10 Ma to 234.1 ± 11 Ma. Because these dates represent cooling ages, we interpret them as representing a minimum intrusion-age of the Complex implying that its true emplacement age might be somewhat older than 230 Ma. Given that most established CAMP ages revolve around 200 Ma or younger, we hypothesise that FLIC represents a hitherto unknown pre-CAMP magmatic event that might have thermally triggered the initial break-up of Pangaea to form the Central Atlantic. This view is consistent with field-observations that the Complex is cross-cut by predominantly coast-parallel mafic dykes attributed to the CAMP dyke-swarm. To ascertain the hypothesis, we are currently carrying out U-Pb zircon dating to establish, precisely, the true emplacement age of the Complex. The Fission-track ages vary from 91.7 ± 7 Ma to 114.6 ± 9 Ma. This age range shows that after emplacement and crystallisation, the FLIC underwent an extremely slow cooling for a long period of time. This in turn implies that after the break-up of Pangea to form, in part, the Sierra Leone margin, a late and slow uplift (Erosion/denudation) that took place during the Cretaceous was a very important geological process that characterised the post-rift evolution of the margin. References: Barrie, I.J., P.A.M. Andriessen, F.F. Beunk, J.R. Wijbrans, V.E.H. Strasser-King, D.V.A.Fode. (2006). Tectonothermal Evolution of the Sierra Leone Passive Continental Margin, West Africa: Constraints from Thermochronology. Geochemica et Cosmochemica Acta 70 (18): A36- A36 Suppl. S Aug-Sep 2006. Marzoli, A., P.R. Renne, E.M. Piccirillo, M. Ernesto, G. Bellieni, A De Min. (1999). Extensive 200-Million-Year-Old Continental Flood Basalts of the Central Atlantic Magmatic Province. Science284: 616-618. McHone, J.G. (2000). Non-plume magmatism and rifting during the opening of the central Atlantic Ocean. Tectonophysics

  16. Combined 40Ar/39Ar and Fission-Track study of the Freetown Layered Igneous Complex, Freetown, Sierra Leone, West Africa: Implications for the Initial Break-up of Pangea to form the Central Atlantic Ocean and Insight into the Post-rift Evolution of the Sie

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barrie, Ibrahim; Wijbrans, Jan; Andriessen, Paul; Beunk, Frank; Strasser-King, Victor; Fode, Daniel

    2010-05-01

    good plateaus that range from 196.3 ± 3 Ma to 232.1 ± 9 Ma with the best-fit isochron plots showing a range from 193.3± 10 Ma to 234.1 ± 11 Ma. Because these dates represent cooling ages, we interpret them as representing a minimum intrusion-age of the Complex implying that its true emplacement age might be somewhat older than 230 Ma. Given that most established CAMP ages revolve around 200 Ma or younger, we hypothesise that FLIC represents a hitherto unknown pre-CAMP magmatic event that might have thermally triggered the initial break-up of Pangaea to form the Central Atlantic. This view is consistent with field-observations that the Complex is cross-cut by predominantly coast-parallel mafic dykes attributed to the CAMP dyke-swarm. To ascertain the hypothesis, we are currently carrying out U-Pb zircon dating to establish, precisely, the true emplacement age of the Complex. The Fission-track ages vary from 91.7 ± 7 Ma to 114.6 ± 9 Ma. This age range shows that after emplacement and crystallisation, the FLIC underwent an extremely slow cooling for a long period of time. This in turn implies that after the break-up of Pangea to form, in part, the Sierra Leone margin, a late and slow uplift (Erosion/denudation) that took place during the Cretaceous was a very important geological process that characterised the post-rift evolution of the margin. References: Barrie, I.J., P.A.M. Andriessen, F.F. Beunk, J.R. Wijbrans, V.E.H. Strasser-King, D.V.A.Fode. (2006). Tectonothermal Evolution of the Sierra Leone Passive Continental Margin, West Africa: Constraints from Thermochronology. Geochemica et Cosmochemica Acta 70 (18): A36- A36 Suppl. S Aug-Sep 2006. Marzoli, A., P.R. Renne, E.M. Piccirillo, M. Ernesto, G. Bellieni, A De Min. (1999). Extensive 200-Million-Year-Old Continental Flood Basalts of the Central Atlantic Magmatic Province. Science284: 616-618. McHone, J.G. (2000). Non-plume magmatism and rifting during the opening of the central Atlantic Ocean. Tectonophysics

  17. Seismic reflectivity and magmatic underplating beneath the Kenya Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thybo, H.; Maguire, P. K. H.; Birt, C.; Perchuć, E.

    2000-09-01

    The lower crust around the Kenya Rift is generally reflective in wide-angle seismic sections. Remarkably, high amplitude reflections of low frequency originate from underneath the rift, whereas weaker reflections of high frequency prevail from outside the rift. This indicates thicker layering and larger reflection coefficients in the lower crust beneath the rift than outside it. Petrologically, magmatic intrusions are compatible with the thick layering beneath the rift axis, and the associated large reflection coefficients are indicative of their cumulate layering and fractionation. Hence, the observed thinning of the crust below the rift may be substantially less than the real mechanical thinning due to the addition of intrusive or underplated material.

  18. InSAR observations of post-rifting deformation around the Dabbahu rift segment, Afar, Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamling, Ian J.; Wright, Tim J.; Calais, Eric; Lewi, Elias; Fukahata, Yukitoshi

    2014-04-01

    Increased displacement rates have been observed following manylarge earthquakes and magmatic events. Although an order of magnitude smaller than the displacements associated with the main event, the post-seismic or post-rifting deformation may continue for years to decades after the initial earthquake or dyke intrusion. Due to the rare occurrence of subaerial rifting events, there are very few observations to constrain models of post-rifting deformation. In 2005 September, a 60-km-long dyke was intruded along the Dabbahu segment of the Nubia-Arabia Plate boundary (Afar, Ethiopia), marking the beginning of an ongoing rifting episode. Continued activity has been monitored using satellite radar interferometry and data from global positioning system instruments deployed around the rift in response to the initial intrusion. Using multiple satellite passes, we are able to separate the rift perpendicular and vertical displacement fields around the Dabbahu segment. Rift perpendicular and vertical rates of up to 180 and 240 mm yr-1, respectively. Here, we show that models of viscoelastic relaxation alone are insufficient to reproduce the observed deformation field and that a large portion of the observed signal is related to the movement of magma within the rift segment. Our models suggest upper mantle viscosities of 1018-19 Pa s overlain by an elastic crust of between 15 and 30 km. To fit the observations, inflation and deflation of magma chambers in the centre of the rift and to the south east of the rift axis is required at rates of ˜0.13 and -0.08 km3 yr-1.

  19. Off rift and on rift volcanism along the southern most extremity of the Reykjanes Ridge.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoskuldsson, Armann; Martinez, Fernando; Hey, Richard

    2014-05-01

    In August-September 2013 R/V Marcus G Langseth conducted a geophysical survey of the southern Reykjanes Ridge and flanks to the Bight transform fault including the first orthogonally spreading segment to the south. The objectives were to better understand how the Reykjanes Ridge replaced the earlier transform fault-dominated structure. The survey acquired full-coverage multibeam bathymetry of some 90,000 km2 and acoustic backscatter imagery and coincident gravity and magnetic profiles. The Rift axis of the RR is defined by a rift valley, striking 36° NE, and deepens from N to S towards the Bight transform fault. Volcanism along the rift axis is characterized by en-echelon volcanic ridges striking 14°NE and rising some 400-1000 m above the valley floor, single circular volcanic sea mounts 400-600 m high, lava flow sheets and craters. Fissures and faults are not very prominent with in the rift valley. However, at both sides bounding the rift valley, fissure, faults and uplifting of the crust is a dominant feature. Surprisingly numerous volcanic edifices are observed on the faulted crust drifting away from the plate boundary. Further these volcanic edifices do not all show any faulting and have cone shape forms, indicating more explosive activity than within the rift. The volcanic edifices range in size from 2-3 km at the base to some hundreds of meters. Backscatter analysis shows that in general the volcanic edifices have higher values than the surrounding basement. These vents are observed as far as 100 km from the rifting center. High backscatter along with little or no faulting indicates that these off rift volcanic vents are younger than the basement they are resting on, thus manifesting that volcanism is not solely confined to the active rift boundary in the area. The segment south of Bight transform fault is highly dotted by these off rift volcanic vents

  20. Spatial and temporal variations in magma-assisted rifting, Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rowland, Julie V.; Wilson, Colin J. N.; Gravley, Darren M.

    2010-02-01

    Taupo Volcanic Zone (TVZ), New Zealand, is a NNE-trending rifting arc, active for ~ 2 Myr, with a 125-km-long central segment characterized by exceptionally voluminous rhyolite volcanism. The volcanic segmentation reflects along-axis variations in magmatism with implications for the thermal state of the crust and consequent rifting dynamics. Along the zone to the north and south of Central TVZ, the limbs of broad monoclines, disrupted to various degrees by normal faults, dip SE against major NW-facing fault zones. In these northern and southern segments, the loci of magmatism (shown by the position of volcanoes) and rifting (manifested by the distribution of seismicity and modern (< 61 ka) faulting in the Taupo Fault Belt (TFB)) coincide. Mantle-derived magmas are localized within the crust in a plexus of small bodies, dikes and sills, and dike-assisted rifting operates at times (but not always) as shown by the historic record. In contrast, throughout most of Central TVZ the loci of magmatism and tectonism (shown by the distribution of high-temperature geothermal systems and inferred from geophysical models and surface fault studies) are offset laterally and extensional strain appears to be partitioned accordingly. Geological, geophysical and geodetic studies indicate the following magma-assisted mechanisms of extension in Central TVZ: 1) mafic dike intrusion of length scale > 20 km and width > 1 m oriented perpendicular to the extension direction; 2) fault slips of < 2 m on structures along-strike from and coeval with silicic eruptions, some of which were triggered by mafic dike intrusion; 3) rifting episodes associated with regional-scale uplift, multi-fault rupture (slips < 2 m) and transient subsidence, arguably driven by changes in state at shallow depths. Volcanic studies of < 340 ka deposits demonstrate that an additional, but less frequent, mechanism involves temporally higher rates of fault slip with regional-scale collapse of rift basins in association

  1. Which Fault Orientations Occur during Oblique Rifting? Combining Analog and Numerical 3d Models with Observations from the Gulf of Aden

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Autin, J.; Brune, S.

    2013-12-01

    Oblique rift systems like the Gulf of Aden are intrinsically three-dimensional. In order to understand the evolution of these systems, one has to decode the fundamental mechanical similarities of oblique rifts. One way to accomplish this, is to strip away the complexity that is generated by inherited fault structures. In doing so, we assume a laterally homogeneous segment of Earth's lithosphere and ask how many different fault populations are generated during oblique extension inbetween initial deformation and final break-up. We combine results of an analog and a numerical model that feature a 3D segment of a layered lithosphere. In both cases, rift evolution is recorded quantitatively in terms of crustal fault geometries. For the numerical model, we adopt a novel post-processing method that allows to infer small-scale crustal fault orientation from the surface stress tensor. Both models involve an angle of 40 degrees between the rift normal and the extensional direction which allows comparison to the Gulf of Aden rift system. The resulting spatio-temporal fault pattern of our models shows three normal fault orientations: rift-parallel, extension-orthogonal, and intermediate, i.e. with a direction inbetween the two previous orientations. The rift evolution involves three distinct phases: (i) During the initial rift phase, wide-spread faulting with intermediate orientation occurs. (ii) Advanced lithospheric necking enables rift-parallel normal faulting at the rift flanks, while strike-slip faulting in the central part of the rift system indicates strain partitioning. (iii) During continental break-up, displacement-orthogonal as well as intermediate faults occur. We compare our results to the structural evolution of the Eastern Gulf of Aden. External parts of the rift exhibit intermediate and displacement-orthogonal faults while rift-parallel faults are present at the rift borders. The ocean-continent transition mainly features intermediate and displacement

  2. Constraining the dynamic response of subcontinental lithospheric mantle to rifting using Re-Os model ages in the Western Ross Sea, Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doherty, C.; Class, C.; Goldstein, S. L.; Shirey, S. B.; Martin, A. P.; Cooper, A. F.; Berg, J. H.; Gamble, J. A.

    2012-12-01

    In order to understand the dynamic response of the subcontinental lithospheric mantle (SCLM) to rifting, it is important to be able to distinguish the geochemical signatures of SCLM vs. asthenosphere. Recent work demonstrates that unradiogenic Os isotope ratios can indicate old depletion events in the convecting upper mantle (e.g. Rudnick & Walker, 2009), and allow us to make these distinctions. Thus, if SCLM can be traced across a rifted margin, its fate during rifting can be established. The Western Ross Sea provides favorable conditions to test the dynamic response of SCLM to rifting. Re-Os measurements from 8 locations extending from the rift shoulder to 200 km into the rift basin reveal 187Os/188Os ranging from 0.1056 at Foster Crater on the shoulder, to 0.1265 on Ross Island within the rift. While individual sample model ages vary widely throughout the margin, 'aluminochron' ages (Reisberg & Lorand, 1995) reveal a narrower range of lithospheric stabilization ages. Franklin Island and Sulfur Cones show a range of Re-depletion ages (603-1522 Ma and 436-1497 Ma) but aluminochrons yield Paleoproterozoic stabilization ages of 1680 Ma and 1789 Ma, respectively. These ages coincide with U-Pb zircon ages from Transantarctic Mountain (TAM) crustal rocks, in support of SCLM stabilization at the time of crust formation along the central TAM. The Paleoproterozoic stabilization age recorded at Franklin Island is especially significant, since it lies 200km off of the rift shoulder. The similar ages beneath the rift shoulder and within the rift suggests stretched SCLM reaches into the rift and thus precludes replacement by asthenospheric mantle. The persistence of thinned Paleoproterozoic SCLM into the rifted zone in WARS suggests that it represents a 'type I' margin of Huismans and Beaumont (2011), which is characterized by crustal breakup before loss of lithospheric mantle. The Archean Re-depletion age of 3.2 Ga observed on the rift shoulder suggests that cratonic

  3. Early Continental Rifting of the South China Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, C.; Chiu, M.; Chan, C.

    2010-12-01

    Combined two years (2007 and 2008) of OBS and MCS studies in the northern slope of the South China Sea, we suggest that the early rifting, probably during 60 - 30 mabp, is an asymmetrical Atlantic-type continental rifting. The crust thin out from 35-40 km of possible continental crust to about 10-15 km of typical oceanic crust. Along the continent-ocean boundary, we observe an intrusion of the high P-wave velocity (about 7.5-8.0 km/sec). This is possible of mantle exhumation as comparable to other Atlantic-type continental margins. The OBS result is revealed by the gravity data. Along the upper layers of the continental crust as well as the oceanic crust, the MCS and multi-beam bathymetry data show that they are covered by numerous submarine seamounts. This probably relate to a volcanic origin of the Cenozoic sea-floor spreading during 30-15 mabp as mapped by previous magnetic anomalies in this region. The sea-floor spreading spread apart in the central, NW and SW sub-basins with several different episodes. Lack of the deep crustal data in the southern slope of the South China Sea, particularly around the Sprately area, the interpretation is speculative. However, several very large-size atolls (150 - 200 km in diameter), such as the Chen-Ho, Shun-Zu, Chung-Yeh and Chiu-Cheng fringing reefs, are sub-parallel located along the south margins. We interpret that these are the upper portions of the continental rifting. Combined the two tectonic stories in the northern and southern slope of the South China Sea, we believe that it is in consistent with the complicate nature of the South China Sea crust.

  4. Rifting Thick Lithosphere - Canning Basin, Western Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Czarnota, Karol; White, Nicky

    2016-04-01

    The subsidence histories and architecture of most, but not all, rift basins are elegantly explained by extension of ~120 km thick lithosphere followed by thermal re-thickening of the lithospheric mantle to its pre-rift thickness. Although this well-established model underpins most basin analysis, it is unclear whether the model explains the subsidence of rift basins developed over substantially thick lithosphere (as imaged by seismic tomography beneath substantial portions of the continents). The Canning Basin of Western Australia is an example where a rift basin putatively overlies lithosphere ≥180 km thick, imaged using shear wave tomography. Subsidence modelling in this study shows that the entire subsidence history of the <300 km wide and <6 km thick western Canning Basin is adequately explained by mild Ordovician extension (β≈1.2) of ~120 km thick lithosphere followed by post-rift thermal subsidence. This is consistent with the established model, described above, albeit with perturbations due to transient dynamic topography support which are expressed as basin-wide unconformities. In contrast the <150 km wide and ~15 km thick Fitzroy Trough of the eastern Canning Basin reveals an almost continuous period of normal faulting between the Ordovician and Carboniferous (β<2.0) followed by negligible post-rift thermal subsidence. These features cannot be readily explained by the established model of rift basin development. We attribute the difference in basin architecture between the western and eastern Canning Basin to rifting of thick lithosphere beneath the eastern part, verified by the presence of ~20 Ma diamond-bearing lamproites intruded into the basin depocentre. In order to account for the observed subsidence, at standard crustal densities, the lithospheric mantle is required to be depleted in density by 50-70 kg m-3, which is in line with estimates derived from modelling rare-earth element concentrations of the ~20 Ma lamproites and global isostatic

  5. Complexities in rift initiation and development within the Iceland Plateau, North-Atlantic.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brandsdóttir, Bryndís; Hooft, Emilie; Mjelde, Rolf; Murai, Yoshio

    2015-04-01

    Spreading north of Iceland has been complex since the break-up of the North Atlantic in late Paleocene-early Eocene. Magnetic anomalies within the Iceland Plateau, west of the Ægir Ridge and along the Greenland-Iceland-Faeroe Ridge are irregular, formed by plate boundary complexities at breakup, branched accretion zones, westward rifting relocations, and large overlapping rifts. The 700 km long KRISE7 seismic refraction/reflection and gravity profile, straddles 66.5°N, between the Kolbeinsey and Ægir Ridges, crossing the three physiographic provinces that characterize this region: the Iceland Shelf, Iceland Plateau and Norway Basin. On the basis of crustal thickness and velocity structure, combined with older seismic reflection profiles and drill cores, these provinces correspond to three individual spreading rifts that were active at different time periods. The deep, fan shaped Norway basin was formed during the initial opening of the Atlantic by spreading at the now extinct Ægir Ridge. The oldest crust in the western Norway Basin has thickness 8-10 km and this thins to 4-5 km at the Ægir Ridge reflecting the progressive abandonment of spreading at this rift axis. The eastern Iceland Plateau was the locus of an extinct spreading center, which was segmented and overlapped the Ægir Ridge by 300 km. Spreading on the Iceland Plateau rift occurred simultaneously with that on the Ægir Ridge prior to 26 Ma, when the Kolbeinsey Ridge was initiated by a westward rift jump. The Iceland Plateau rift formed by rifting along the continent-ocean transition at the former central E-Greenland margin, associated with the formation of the Jan Mayen Ridge. Lower crustal domes and corresponding gravity highs across the Iceland Plateau mark the location of the extinct rift axis. The crust at the Iceland Plateau rift is thicker (12-15 km) that that at the conjugate Ægir Ridge and formed under active upwelling conditions (normal lower crustal velocities), which we attribute to

  6. Earthquake clusters in Corinth Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mesimeri, Maria; Papadimitriou, Eleftheria; Karakostas, Vasilios; Tsaklidis, George

    2013-04-01

    Clusters commonly occur as main shock-aftershock (MS-AS) sequences but also as earthquake swarms, which are empirically defined as an increase in seismicity rate above the background rate without a clear triggering main shock earthquake. Earthquake swarms occur in a variety of different environments and might have a diversity of origins, characterized by a high b-value in their magnitude distribution. The Corinth Rift, which was selected as our target area, appears to be the most recent extensional structure, with a likely rate of fault slip of about 1cm/yr and opening of 7mm/yr. High seismic activity accommodates the active deformation with frequent strong (M≥6.0) events and several seismic excitations without a main shock with clearly discriminative magnitude. Identification of earthquake clusters that occurred in this area in last years and investigation of their spatio-temporal distribution is attempted, with the application of known declustering algorithms, aiming to associate their occurrence with certain patterns in seismicity behavior. The earthquake catalog of the National Hellenic Seismological Network is used, and a certain number of clusters were extracted from the dataset, with the MS-AS sequences being distinguished from earthquake swarms. Spatio-temporal properties of each subset were analyzed in detail, after determining the respective completeness magnitude. This work was supported in part by the THALES Program of the Ministry of Education of Greece and the European Union in the framework of the project entitled "Integrated understanding of Seismicity, using innovative Methodologies of Fracture mechanics along with Earthquake and non-extensive statistical physics - Application to the geodynamic system of the Hellenic Arc, SEISMO FEAR HELLARC".

  7. The Midcontinent rift system and the Precambrian basement in southern Michigan

    SciTech Connect

    Smith, W.A. . Dept. of Geology)

    1994-04-01

    The Precambrian basement within Michigan consists of at least three provinces, each characterized by distinctive potential field anomalies: (1) the Eastern Granite-Rhyolite Province (EGRP) in the south, (2) the Grenville Province in the southeast and (3) the Penokean Province to the north. Also located within the basement is the Mid-Michigan rift (MMR), which is the eastern arm of the Midcontinent rift system (MRS). Southwest and parallel to the MMR is a series of linear positive gravity anomalies which has been referred to as the Ft. Wayne rift (FWR) and the Southwest Michigan Anomaly (SWMA). The EGRP, which is characterized by undeformed and unmetamorphosed rhyolite to dacite and epizonal granites, was emplaced ca. 1510--1450 Ma. However, the EGRP may be comprised of several terranes of varying extent and origin based on analysis of potential field data and rock and mineral ages. The MMR and the FWR/SWMA are characterized by linear arrays of positive magnetic and gravity anomalies, which are probably due to thick accumulations of mafic igneous rocks within the rifts. The extent and trends of the FWR/SWMA have been largely inferred from geophysical data with a presumption of the age of about 1,100 Ma. The continuation of the MMR southward into Ohio and Kentucky as a sequence of gravity highs is questionable and needs further resolution. The FWR/SWMA may be part of the East Continent Rift Basin (ECRB). The ECRB, which is a large complex of related rift basins of Keweenawan age (1300 --1100 Ma), may be an extension of the MRS but it is not physically continuous with it. The ECRB lies to the west of the Grenville Front and extends at least from northwest Ohio to central Kentucky. Extensions of the ECRB north and south are speculative.

  8. Crustal Structure beneath the Rwenzori Region of the Albertine Rift using Ambient-Noise Tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaviani, A.; Paul, A.; Rumpker, G.

    2015-12-01

    In this study we investigate the crustal structure beneath the Rwenzori region by analyzing a 1-year ambient-noise data set recorded by a network of 33 broadband seismic stations that have operated between September 2009 and August 2011. The Rwenzori region, located between the Democratic Republic of Congo and Uganda, is part of the western (Albertine) branch of the East African Rift System (EARS). The region of study is situated between the Albert Rift and the Edward Rift segments and covers an area of approximately 120 km by 50 km. The main objective of the seismological experiment was to address the questions of the uplift of the Rwenzori Mountains in an extensional regime and the absence of a crustal root beneath the mountain range. Any model proposed to address these questions requires the knowledge of the structure of the Rwenzori horst and surrounding rift shoulders. Previous results from local travel-time tomography revealed the presence of low-velocity anomalies in the upper crust beneath the mountain range relative to higher velocities in the surrounding shoulders. However, since the stations used in the previous study only covered the northern part of the region, the resolution of the models proposed by the body-wave tomography was very low beneath the Rwenzori Mountains. Hence, the limits of the Rwenzori horst at depth relative to the rift shoulders are still poorly known. The main objective of our ambient-noise tomography (ANT) is to provide an explanation for the building of Rwenzori Mountains. Due to the small aperture of the seismological network, we are mainly interested in the shallow crustal structure including the boundaries between the central Rwenzori horst and the surrounding rift shoulders as well as the variations in the thickness of the sedimentary basins. We expect that the ANT images will be able to delineate the boundaries between the main tectonic features including the limits of the Rwenzori horst at depth.

  9. Structural framework of the Jaibaras Rift, Brazil, based on geophysical data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pedrosa, Nilo Costa, Jr.; Vidotti, Roberta M.; Fuck, Reinhardt A.; Leopoldino Oliveira, Karen M.; Castelo Branco, R. Mariano G.

    2015-03-01

    The Cambro-Ordovician Jaibaras Rift is a NE-SW trending elongated feature, controlled by the Transbrasiliano lineament, locally known as Sobral-Pedro II shear zone (SPIISZ). An integrated study of geophysical data (gammaspectrometry, magnetometry and gravimetry) was undertaken in the Jaibaras Rift area, between Ceará Central (CCD) and Médio Coreaú domains (MCD), northwest Borborema Province. Geophysical data were interpreted qualitatively and quantitatively in order to understand the tectono-magmatic relations and rift formation based on the main geophysical lineaments, source geometry and depth, and separation of geophysical domains. In addition, a 2D gravity model was generated. The results show a structural partition characterized by NE-SW lineaments and E-W inflexions, where CCD presents a relatively mild magnetic field, whilst the MCD field is more disturbed. The Jaibaras Rift is characterized by positive magnetic and gravity anomalies. The SPIISZ, which corresponds to the SE fault edge of the Jaibaras Rift, is marked by strong magnetic dipoles and strong gravity gradients in the profile, showing the deep character of the Transbrasiliano lineament in the region. The Café-Ipueiras fault, at the NW edge of the rift, is well marked in gravity profiles, but displays low contrast of the magnetic field. Interpretation of the gravimetric anomaly map allowed to recognizing the main NE-SW axis, with alternation of maxima and minima in MCD. A regional gravity gradient reveals significant lateral density variation between the MCD and CCD perpendicular to the SPIISZ, emphasizing it as a main continental suture zone between crustal blocks.

  10. Young rift kinematics in the Tadjoura rift, western Gulf of Aden, Republic of Djibouti

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Daoud, Mohamed A.; Le Gall, Bernard; Maury, René C.; Rolet, JoëL.; Huchon, Philippe; Guillou, Hervé

    2011-02-01

    The Tadjoura rift forms the westernmost edge of the westerly propagating Sheba ridge, between Arabia and Somalia, as it enters into the Afar depression. From structural and remote sensing data sets, the Tadjoura rift is interpreted as an asymmetrical south facing half-graben, about 40 km wide, dominated by a large boundary fault zone to the north. It is partially filled up by the 1-3 Myr old Gulf Basalts which onlapped the older Somali Basalts along its shallower southern flexural margin. The major and trace element analysis of 78 young onshore lavas allows us to distinguish and map four distinct basaltic types, namely the Gulf, Somali, Goumarre, and Hayyabley Basalts. These results, together with radiometric age data, lead us to propose a revised volcano-stratigraphic sketch of the two exposed Tadjoura rift margins and to discriminate and date several distinct fault networks of this oblique rift. Morphological and statistical analyses of onshore extensional fault populations show marked changes in structural styles along-strike, in a direction parallel to the rift axis. These major fault disturbances are assigned to the arrest of axial fault tip propagation against preexisting discontinuities in the NS-oriented Arta transverse zone. According to our model, the sinistral jump of rifting into the Asal-Ghoubbet rift segment results from structural inheritance, in contrast with the en échelon or transform mechanism of propagation that prevailed along the entire length of the Gulf of Aden extensional system.

  11. Submarine thermal springs on the Galapagos Rift

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Corliss, J.B.; Dymond, J.; Gordon, L.I.; Edmond, J.M.; Von Herzen, R. P.; Ballard, Richard D.; Green, K.; Williams, D.; Bainbridge, A.; Crane, K.; Van Andel, T. H.

    1979-01-01

    The submarine hydrothermal activity on and near the Galápagos Rift has been explored with the aid of the deep submersible Alvin. Analyses of water samples from hydrothermal vents reveal that hydrothermal activity provides significant or dominant sources and sinks for several components of seawater; studies of conductive and convective heat transfer suggest that two-thirds of the heat lost from new oceanic lithosphere at the Galápagos Rift in the first million years may be vented from thermal springs, predominantly along the axial ridge within the rift valley. The vent areas are populated by animal communities. They appear to utilize chemosynthesis by sulfur-oxidizing bacteria to derive their entire energy supply from reactions between the seawater and the rocks at high temperatures, rather than photosynthesis

  12. Submarine thermal sprirngs on the galapagos rift.

    PubMed

    Corliss, J B; Dymond, J; Gordon, L I; Edmond, J M; von Herzen, R P; Ballard, R D; Green, K; Williams, D; Bainbridge, A; Crane, K; van Andel, T H

    1979-03-16

    The submarine hydrothermal activity on and near the Galápagos Rift has been explored with the aid of the deep submersible Alvin. Analyses of water samples from hydrothermal vents reveal that hydrothermal activity provides significant or dominant sources and sinks for several components of seawater; studies of conductive and convective heat transfer suggest that two-thirds of the heat lost from new oceanic lithosphere at the Galápagos Rift in the first million years may be vented from thermal springs, predominantly along the axial ridge within the rift valley. The vent areas are populated by animal communities. They appear to utilize chemosynthesis by sulfur-oxidizing bacteria to derive their entire energy supply from reactions between the seawater and the rocks at high temperatures, rather than photosynthesis. PMID:17776033

  13. Crustal extension in the Baikal rift zone

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zorin, Yu; Cordell, L.

    1991-01-01

    Analysis of the gravity field along four profiles crossing the Baikal rift zone permits an estimate of the amount of anomalous mass produced by 1. (1) graben-fill sediments, 2. (2) Moho uplift and intrusion of mantle sills and dikes, 3. (3) an asthenospheric bulge. Crustal extension is evaluated based on the idea of mass and volume balance of material introduced into and removed from the initial volume of the crust. Extension in the Baikal rift increases southwestward from 0.9 km in the Chara depression to 19.3 km in the South Baikal depression. These values generally agree with the position of the Euler pole determined from seismic data (fault plane solutions). Average rotation velocity for the lithospheric plates separated by the rift zone is estimated to be 5.93 ?? 10-4 rad/m.y. over about 30 m.y. ?? 1991.

  14. Seismic investigation of the southern Rio Grande Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thompson, Lennox E.

    Competing models exist to explain what caused the Earth's crust to spread apart 29 million years ago to create a region known today as the Rio Grande Rift (RGR). The RGR extends from central Colorado through New Mexico to northern Mexico, near El Paso. The RGR has different geologic features that distinguish it from most other valleys (e.g., the RGR was not cut by a river nor does a river branch upstream). A growing body of evidence shows that geologic activity still occurs in the RGR, with a continuation of faulting, seismicity and widening at a small rate of about 0.3 mm/yr (Woodward , 1977). We map of the seismic velocity structure and crustal thickness using data from the Rio Grande Rift Seismic TRAnsect (RISTRA) experiment and the EarthScope Transportable Array (USArray) dataset. In addition to the data we collected from the RISTRA experiment and USArray dataset, we also acquired receiver functions from the EarthScope Automatic Receiver Survey (EARS) website (http://www.earthscope.org/data) and waveform data from the Incorporated Research Institutes for Seismology (IRIS) Data Management Center (DMC). We requested seismograms from the IRIS DMC database where we acquired teleseismic events from Jan 2000 to Dec 2009. This includes 7,259 seismic events with a minimum magnitude of 5.5 and 106,389 continuous waveforms. This data was preprocessed (merged, rotated) using a program called Standing Order of Data (SOD). The RISTRA experiment and the USArray were designed to image crust and mantle structures by computing receiver functions for all data in the Southern Rio Grande Rift (SRGR). We map the crustal thickness, seismic velocity, and mantle structure for the sole purpose to better determine the nature of tectonic activity that is presently taking place and further investigate the regional extension of the Southern Rio Grande Rift (SRGR). Here we present preliminary results of the crustal and velocity structure using the kriging interpolation scheme seem stable

  15. Oil exploration in nonmarine rift basins of interior Sudan

    SciTech Connect

    Schull, T.J.

    1984-04-01

    In early 1975 Chevron Overseas Petroleum Inc. commenced a major petroleum exploration effort in previously unexplored interior Sudan. With the complete cooperation of the Sudanese Government, Chevron has acquired a vast amount of geologic and geophysical data during the past 9 years. These data include extensive aeromagnetic and gravity surveys, 25,000 mi (40,200 km) of seismic data, and the results of 66 wells. This information has defined several large rift basins which are now recognized as a major part of the Central African rift system. The sedimentary basins of interior Sudan are characterized by thick Cretaceous and Tertiary nonmarine clastic sequences. Over 35,000 ft (10,600 m) of sediment have been deposited in the deepest trough, and extensive basinal areas are underlain by more than 20,000 ft (6100 m) of sediment. The depositional sequence includes thick lacustrine shales and claystones, flood plain claystones, and lacustrine, fluvial, and alluvial sandstones and conglomerates. Those lacustrine claystones which were deposited in an anoxic environment provide oil-prone source rocks. Reservoir sandstones have been found in a wide variety of nonmarine sandstone facies. The extensional tectonism which formed these basins began in the Early Cretaceous. Movement along major fault trends continued intermittently into the Miocene. This deformation resulted in a complex structural history which led to the formation of several deep fault-bounded troughs, major interbasin high trends, and complex basin flanks. This tectonism has created a wide variety of structures, many of which have become effective hydrocarbon traps.

  16. Upwarp of anomalous asthenosphere beneath the Rio Grande rift

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Parker, E.C.; Davis, P.M.; Evans, J.R.; Iyer, H.M.; Olsen, K.H.

    1984-01-01

    Continental rifts are possible analogues of mid-ocean ridges, although major plate tectonic features are less clearly observed1. Current thermal models of mid-ocean ridges2-4 consist of solid lithospheric plates overlying the hotter, less viscous asthenosphere, with plate thickness increasing away from the ridge axis. The lithospheric lower boundary lies at or near the melting point isotherm, so that at greater depths higher temperatures account for lower viscosity, lower seismic velocities and possibly partial melting. Upwarp of this boundary at the ridge axis concentrates heat there, thus lowering densities by expansion and raising the sea floor to the level of thermal isostatic equilibrium. At slow spreading ridges, a major central graben forms owing to the mechanics of magma injection into the crust5. Topography, heat flow, gravity and seismic studies support these models. On the continents, a low-velocity channel has been observed, although it is poorly developed beneath ancient cratons6-9. Plate tectonic models have been applied to continental basins and margins10-12, but further similarities to the oceanic models remain elusive. Topographic uplift is often ascribed to Airy type isostatic compensation caused by crustal thickening, rather than thermal compensation in the asthenosphere. Here we discuss the Rio Grande rift, in southwestern United States. Teleseismic P-wave residuals show that regional uplift is explained by asthenosphere uplift rather than crustal thickening. ?? 1984 Nature Publishing Group.

  17. Variation in styles of rifting in the Gulf of California.

    PubMed

    Lizarralde, Daniel; Axen, Gary J; Brown, Hillary E; Fletcher, John M; González-Fernández, Antonio; Harding, Alistair J; Holbrook, W Steven; Kent, Graham M; Paramo, Pedro; Sutherland, Fiona; Umhoefer, Paul J

    2007-07-26

    Constraints on the structure of rifted continental margins and the magmatism resulting from such rifting can help refine our understanding of the strength of the lithosphere, the state of the underlying mantle and the transition from rifting to seafloor spreading. An important structural classification of rifts is by width, with narrow rifts thought to form as necking instabilities (where extension rates outpace thermal diffusion) and wide rifts thought to require a mechanism to inhibit localization, such as lower-crustal flow in high heat-flow settings. Observations of the magmatism that results from rifting range from volcanic margins with two to three times the magmatism predicted from melting models to non-volcanic margins with almost no rift or post-rift magmatism. Such variations in magmatic activity are commonly attributed to variations in mantle temperature. Here we describe results from the PESCADOR seismic experiment in the southern Gulf of California and present crustal-scale images across three rift segments. Over short lateral distances, we observe large differences in rifting style and magmatism--from wide rifting with minor synchronous magmatism to narrow rifting in magmatically robust segments. But many of the factors believed to control structural evolution and magmatism during rifting (extension rate, mantle potential temperature and heat flow) tend to vary over larger length scales. We conclude instead that mantle depletion, rather than low mantle temperature, accounts for the observed wide, magma-poor margins, and that mantle fertility and possibly sedimentary insulation, rather than high mantle temperature, account for the observed robust rift and post-rift magmatism. PMID:17653189

  18. UHP-UHT peak conditions and near-adiabatic exhumation path of diamond-bearing garnet-clinopyroxene rocks from the Eger Crystalline Complex, North Bohemian Massif

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haifler, Jakub; Kotková, Jana

    2016-04-01

    Intermediate garnet-clinopyroxene rocks from the Eger Crystalline Complex, North Bohemian Massif, contain microdiamonds enclosed in garnet and zircon. The variable mineral assemblage of these rocks allows for an evaluation of the P-T evolution using numerous univariant equilibria and thermodynamic modelling, in addition to the ternary feldspar solvus, Ti-in-garnet, Zr-in-rutile and Ti-in-zircon thermometry. Zircon mantle domains with diamond inclusions contain 111-189 ppm Ti, reflecting temperatures of 1037-1117 °C. The peak pressure consistent with diamond stability corresponds to c. 4.5-5.0 GPa. Ti-in-garnet thermometry using the Ti content of diamond-bearing garnet core yielded temperatures of 993-1039 °C at c. 5.0 GPa. An omphacite inclusion in garnet (reflecting c. 2.3-2.4 GPa at c. 1050 °C) and metastably preserved kyanite represent relics of eclogite-facies conditions. The dominant high-pressure granulite-facies mineral assemblage of low-Ca garnet, diopsidic clinopyroxene, antiperthitic feldspar and quartz equilibrated at 1.8-2.1 GPa and c. 1050 °C, based on the XGrs isopleth of the garnet mantle, garnet-feldspar-kyanite-quartz univariant equilibria and ternary feldspar solvus. Our thermodynamic modelling shows that a steep decrease of XGrs from a maximum core value of 0.32 to 0.17 at the rim as well as a rimward XMg increase (from 0.42 to 0.50) are consistent with significant decompression without heating. The latter is related to omphacite and kyanite breakdown reactions producing garnet and plagioclase. The Ti content in the rim zone of zircon (13-42 ppm), exsolved plagioclase and K-feldspar associated with matrix diopside and garnet rim, and late biotite reflect temperatures of c. 830-900 °C at c. 1.4 GPa. A similar temperature is recorded by matrix rutile grains, containing 2028-4390 ppm Zr and representing a relatively homogeneous population in contrast to rutile enclosed in garnet with variable Zr content. Our results show that the garnet

  19. Thermomechanical models of the Rio Grande rift

    SciTech Connect

    Bridwell, R.J.; Anderson, C.A.

    1980-01-01

    Fully two-dimensional, coupled thermochemical solutions of a continental rift and platform are used to model the crust and mantle structure of a hot, buoyant mantle diapir beneath the Rio Grande rift. The thermomechanical model includes both linear and nonlinear laws of the Weertman type relating shear stress and creep strain rate, viscosity which depends on temperature and pressure, and activation energy, temperature-dependent thermal conductivity, temperature-dependent coefficient of thermal expansion, the Boussinesq approximation for thermal bouyancy, material convection using a stress rate that is invariant to rigid rotations, an elastically deformable crust, and a free surface. The model determines the free surface velocities, solid state flow field in the mantle, and viscosity structure of lithosphere and asthenosphere. Regional topography and crustal heat flow are simulated. A suite of symmetric models, assumes continental geotherms on the right and the successively increasing rift geotherms on the left. These models predict an asthenospheric flow field which transfers cold material laterally toward the rift at > 300 km, hot, buoyant material approx. 200 km wide which ascends vertically at rates of 1 km/my between 175 to 325 km, and spreads laterally away from the rift at the base of the lithosphere. Crustal spreading rates are similar to uplift rates. The lithosphere acts as stiff, elastic cap, damping upward motion through decreased velocities of 1 km/10 my and spreading uplift laterally. A parameter study varying material coefficients for the Weertman flow law suggests asthenospheric viscosities of approx. 10/sup 22/ to 10/sup 23/ poise. Similar studies predict crustal viscosities of approx. 10/sup 25/ poise. The buoyant process of mantle flow narrows and concentrates heat transport beneath the rift, increases upward velocity, and broadly arches the lithosphere. 10 figures, 1 table.

  20. The Offshore East African Rift System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Franke, D.; Klimke, J.; Jokat, W.; Stollhofen, H.; Mahanjane, S.

    2014-12-01

    Numerous studies have addressed various aspects of the East African Rift system but surprisingly few on the offshore continuation of the south-eastern branch of the rift into the Mozambique Channel. The most prominent article has been published almost 30 years ago by Mougenot et al. (1986) and is based on vintage seismic data. Several studies investigating earthquakes and plate motions from GPS measurements reveal recent deformation along the offshore branch of the East African Rift system. Slip vectors from earthquakes data in Mozambique's offshore basins show a consistent NE direction. Fault plane solutions reveal ~ E-W extensional failure with focal depth clustering around 19 km and 40 km, respectively. Here, we present new evidence for neotectonic deformation derived from modern seismic reflection data and supported by additional geophysical data. The modern rift system obviously reactivates structures from the disintegration of eastern Gondwana. During the Jurassic/Cretaceous opening of the Somali and Mozambique Basins, Madagascar moved southwards along a major shear zone, to its present position. Since the Miocene, parts of the shear zone became reactivated and structurally overprinted by the East African rift system. The Kerimbas Graben offshore northern Mozambique is the most prominent manifestation of recent extensional deformation. Bathymetry data shows that it deepens northwards, with approximately 700 m downthrown on the eastern shoulder. The graben can be subdivided into four subbasins by crosscutting structural lineaments with a NW-SE trend. Together with the N-S striking graben-bounding faults, this resembles a conjugate fault system. In seismic reflection data normal faulting is distinct not only at the earthquake epicenters. The faults cut through the sedimentary successions and typically reach the seafloor, indicating ongoing recent deformation. Reference: Mougenot, D., Recq, M., Virlogeux, P., and Lepvrier, C., 1986, Seaward extension of the East

  1. Rifted continental margins: geometric control on crustal architecture and melting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lundin, Erik; Redfield, Tim; Peron-Pinvidic, Gwenn

    2014-05-01

    A new model is provided for the distribution of magma-poor and magma-rich rifted margins. The South Atlantic, Central Atlantic, North Atlantic - Arctic (Eurasia Basin), and Red Sea all are magma-rich at their distal ends and magma-poor at their proximal ends (with respect to their poles of rotation). The well-known architectural zonation across fully developed magma-poor margins (limited crustal stretching, hyperextension, exhumed mantle, oceanic crust) is also observed along the lengths of many margins at the super-regional scale. Zones of exhumed mantle, marking magma-poor margin, can be mapped for thousands of kilometers. Likewise can zones of seaward dipping reflectors (SDR) marking magma-rich margins. At this scale, the age of the oceanic crust becomes younger in the direction of the rotation pole, implying that the continents ruptured by rift tip propagation (and rotation pole propagation). Propagation is also manifested by the age of pre-break-up magmatism, break-up unconformity, and margin uplift. Hence, the classic cross-sectional depiction of margin evolution has a third dimension. The degree of melting follows the same pattern. At the distal end of e.g. the South Atlantic, SDR zones are wide and gradually thin toward the rotation pole. Eventually exhumed mantle takes over, marking the transition to the magma-poor margins, which remain to the proximal end of rifting. SDR zones also thin laterally from ca 10-15 km thickness at the continent-ocean boundary (COB) to ca 7 km thick oceanic crust beyond the SDRs. Outcrop data demonstrate that also exhumed mantle contains up to ca 12% melt, infiltrated in the peridotites. Thus, melting is largest at the distal ends near the COB, and decreases both laterally toward the evolving ocean and along strike toward the rift tip. Accepting that continents are rigid to a first order, the linear rate of extension at any given location along an evolving rift and ocean, is governed by the angular rate of opening, the distance

  2. Paleomagnetic evidence of oblique rift localization in the Gulf of California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bennett, S. E.; Oskin, M. E.

    2012-12-01

    Paleomagnetic analysis of extensive Miocene ignimbrites in northwest Mexico reveals the timing and distribution of dextral shear associated with the inception of the Gulf of California rift. We drilled new high-precision paleomagnetic reference sites for the regionally extensive 12.5 Ma Tuff of San Felipe (SF) and the 6.4 Ma Tuffs of Mesa Cuadrada (MC) in undeformed, mesa-top exposures in north-central Baja California, west of the rift-bounding San Pedro Martír fault system. The paleomagnetic remanence directions determined at these tectonically stable sites in central Baja California (DSF=212.4°, ISF=-3.0°, nSF=48; DMC=15.6°, IMC=56.2°, nMC=92) are consistent over tens of kilometers. These directions are counter-clockwise from directions measured at most previously published paleomagnetic sites within the rift, an indication that fault blocks within the rift have experienced variable clockwise vertical-axis rotation. Additionally, α95 confidence cones at these new sites (SF=1.3°, MC=1.0°) are smaller than at the previously defined reference site at Mesa Cuadrada (SF=4.1°, MC=8.9°), where few cores were drilled (nSF=6, nMC=3). Comparisons of new paleomagnetic remanence directions from central Baja California with directions from previous intra-rift studies indicate clockwise vertical-axis rotations for SF and MC up to 76 ± 11° and 40 ± 3°, respectively. An important exception is the easternmost SF drill site in central Sonora, where no clockwise rotation has occurred since 12.5 Ma. Although SF is tilted gently to the west at this site, it appears to lie beyond the limit of clockwise vertical-axis rotation related to oblique rifting. The mean magnitudes of the rotation errors (bar∆RSF= 4.3°, bar∆RMC= 6.3°) using these new paleomagnetic sites are lower than using the previous reference sites at Mesa Cuadrada (bar∆RSF=5.6°, bar∆RMC=13.2°), owing mostly to the larger number of cores collected at the new reference sites. At 10 of 11 paired

  3. Construction and destruction of a volcanic island developed inside an oceanic rift: Graciosa Island, Terceira Rift, Azores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sibrant, A. L. R.; Marques, F. O.; Hildenbrand, A.

    2014-09-01

    There is a great lack of knowledge regarding the evolution of islands inside active oceanic rifts, in particular the meaning of the different evolutionary steps. Therefore, we conducted an investigation in Graciosa Island, which lies at the northwestern end of the Terceira Rift in the Azores Triple Junction, with the objective of constraining the evolution of the island in terms of volcanic growth and mass wasting, in particular the meaning and age of the destruction events. From digital elevation model (DEM) analysis, stratigraphic and tectonic observations, K/Ar dating on key samples, and available bathymetry and gravity data, we propose that Graciosa comprises five main volcanic complexes separated by major unconformities related to large scale mass wasting: (1) The older volcanic edifice (Serra das Fontes Complex) grew until ca. 700 ka, and was affected by a major flank collapse towards the southwest, which removed the whole SW flank, the summit and a part of the NE flank. (2) The Baía do Filipe Complex developed between at least 472 ka and 433 ka in two different ways: in the SW (presently offshore) as a main volcano, and in the NE unconformably over the sub-aerial remnants of the Serra das Fontes Complex, as secondary volcanic edifices. (3) The Baía do Filipe Complex was affected by a major flank collapse towards the SW, again removing most of the edifice. (4) The remnants of the Baía do Filipe Complex were covered in unconformity by the Serra Dormida Complex between ca. 330 and 300 ka, which in turn was unconformably covered by the younger Basaltic Cover Complex between ca. 300 ka and 214 ka. These two units were affected by a third major sector collapse that removed the whole western flank, the summit and part of the eastern flank of the Serra Dormida and Basaltic Cover complexes. (5) Despite the relatively young age of Graciosa, the collapse scars are not well preserved, and not active anymore. (6) A central-type volcano has been growing since at least

  4. Backarc rifting, constructional volcanism and nascent disorganised spreading in the southern Havre Trough backarc rifts (SW Pacific)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wysoczanski, R. J.; Todd, E.; Wright, I. C.; Leybourne, M. I.; Hergt, J. M.; Adam, C.; Mackay, K.

    2010-02-01

    High resolution multibeam (EM300 and SEABEAM) data of the Southern Havre Trough (SHT), combined with observations and sample collections from the submersible Shinkai6500 and deep-tow camera, are used to develop a model for the evolution and magmatism of this backarc system. The Havre Trough and the associated Kermadec Arc are the product of westward subduction at the Pacific-Australian plate boundary. Detailed studies focus on newly discovered features including a seamount (Saito Seamount) and a deep graben (Ngatoroirangi Rift, > 4000 m water depth floored with a constructional axial volcanic ridge > 5 km in length and in excess of 200 m high), both of which are characterised by pillow and lobate flows estimated at < 20,000 years old based on sediment cover, high reflectivity and thin Mn crusts on recovered glassy olivine basalts and basaltic andesites. Elongate volcanic ridges at 35°15'S and 34°30'S, and backarc seamounts (35°30'S, 178°30'E) occur at the eastern margin of the SHT. Similar seafloor morphology is observed in the central and western portions of the basin, suggesting that recent volcanism may be broadly distributed across the backarc. Mass balance modelling indicates a maximum crustal thickness of ~ 11 km to < 6 km, similar to estimates of crustal thickness in the Lau Basin to the north. Given such high crustal attenuation and extensive backarc mafic magmatism within deep SHT rifts, we propose that the SHT is in an incipient phase of distributed and "disorganised" oceanic crustal accretion in multiple, ephemeral, and short but deep (> 4000 m) spreading systems. These discontinuous spreading systems are characterised by failed rifts, rift segmentation, and propagation. Successive episodes of magmatic intrusion into thinned faulted arc basement results in defocused asymmetrical accretion. Cross-arc volcanic chains, isolated volcanoes and underlying basement plateaus are interpreted to represent a "cap" of recent extrusives. However, they may also be

  5. The rift to break-up evolution of the Gulf of Aden: Insights from 3D numerical lithospheric-scale modelling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brune, Sascha; Autin, Julia

    2013-11-01

    The Gulf of Aden provides an ideal setting to study oblique rifting since numerous structural data are available onshore and offshore. Recent surveys showed that the spatio-temporal evolution of the Gulf of Aden rift system is dominated by three fault orientations: displacement-orthogonal (WSW), rift-parallel (WNW) and an intermediate E-W trend. The oldest parts of the rift that are exposed onshore feature displacement-orthogonal and intermediate directions, whereas the subsequently active necking zone involves mainly rift-parallel faults. The final rift phase recorded at the distal margin is characterised by displacement-orthogonal and intermediate fault orientations. We investigate the evolution of the Gulf of Aden from rift initiation to break-up by means of 3D numerical experiments on lithospheric scale. We apply the finite element model SLIM3D which includes realistic, elasto-visco-plastic rheology and a free surface. Despite recent advances, 3D numerical experiments still require relatively coarse resolution so that individual faults are poorly resolved. We address this issue by proposing a simple post-processing method that uses the surface stress-tensor to evaluate stress regime (extensional, strike-slip, compressional) and preferred fault azimuth. The described method is applicable to any geodynamic model and easy to introduce. Our model reproduces the observed fault pattern of the Gulf of Aden and illustrates how multiple fault directions arise from the interaction of local and far-field tectonic stresses in an evolving rift system. The numerical simulations robustly feature intermediate faults during the initial rift phase, followed by rift-parallel normal faulting at the rift flanks and strike-slip faults in the central part of the rift system. Upon break-up, displacement-orthogonal as well as intermediate faults occur. This study corroborates and extends findings from previous analogue experiments of oblique rifting on lithospheric scale and allows new

  6. Gas Geochemistry of Volcanic and Geothermal Areas in the Kenya Rift: Implications for the Role of Fluids in Continental Rifting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, H.; Fischer, T. P.; Ranka, L. S.; Onguso, B.; Kanda, I.; Opiyo-Akech, N.; Sharp, Z. D.; Hilton, D. R.; Kattenhorn, S. A.; Muirhead, J.

    2013-12-01

    The East African Rift (EAR) is an active continental rift and ideal to investigate the processes of rift initiation and the breaking apart of continental lithosphere. Mantle and crust-derived fluids may play a pivotal role in both magmatism and faulting in the EAR. For instance, large quantities of mantle-derived volatiles are emitted at Oldoinyo Lengai volcano [1, 2]. Throughout the EAR, CO2-dominated volatile fluxes are prevalent [3, 4] and often associated with faults (i.e. Rungwe area, Tanzania, [5, 6]). The purpose of this study is to examine the relationship between volcanism, faulting and the volatile compositions, focusing on the central and southern Kenyan and northern Tanzanian section of the EAR. We report our analysis results for samples obtained during a 2013 field season in Kenya. Gases were sampled at fumaroles and geothermal plants in caldera volcanoes (T=83.1-120.2°C) and springs (T=40-79.6°C and pH 8.5-10) located near volcanoes, intra-rift faults, and a transverse fault (the Kordjya fault, a key fluid source in the Magadi rift) by 4N-NaOH solution-filled and empty Giggenbach bottles. Headspace gases were analyzed by a Gas Chromatograph and a Quadrupole Mass Spectrometer at the University of New Mexico. Both N2/Ar and N2/He ratios of all gases (35.38-205.31 and 142.92-564,272, respectively) range between air saturated water (ASW, 40 and ≥150,000) and MORB (100-200 and 40-50). In addition, an N2-Ar-He ternary diagram supports that the gases are produced by two component (mantle and air) mixing. Gases in the empty bottles from volcanoes and springs have N2 (90.88-895.99 mmom/mol), CO2 (2.47-681.21 mmom/mol), CH4 (0-214.78 mmom/mol), O2 (4.47-131.12 mmom/mol), H2 (0-35.78 mmom/mol), Ar (0.15-10.65 mmom/mol), He (0-2.21 mmom/mol), and CO (0-0.08 mmom/mol). Although some of the samples show an atmospheric component, CO2 is a major component in most samples, indicating both volcanoes and springs are emitting CO2. Gases from volcanoes are enriched in

  7. Deformation during the 1975-84 Krafla rifting crisis, NE Iceland, measured by optical image correlation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hollingsworth, J.; Leprince, S.; Avouac, J.; Ayoub, F.

    2011-12-01

    topography in the north promotes deeper diking. Correlation of aerial photos between 1957 and 1976 (during the early stages of the rifting crisis) indicate 2 m extension, which is localized on faults along the northern end of the fissure swarm. No fault slip occurs in the central section of the fissure swarm during the same period, suggesting extension in the north during the early stages of rifting may result from dike injections sourced from the north (possibly offshore), rather than the Krafla caldera to the south. A similar variation in magmatic source region was also observed during the 2005-2009 Afar rifting crisis in East Africa.

  8. Influence of the mechanical coupling and inherited strength variations on the geometry of continental rifts.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Philippon, Melody; van Delft, Pim; van Winden, Matthijs; Zamuroviç, Dejan; Sokoutis, Dimitrios; Willingshofer, Ernst; Cloetingh, Sierd

    2013-04-01

    vary from grabens bounded by high angle normal faults (analogue to the geometry of the Upper Rhine Graben & North Sea Central graben) to listric faults rooting on a basal detachment defining a more asymmetric system (similar to the geometry of the golf of Corinth rift).

  9. Syn-rift unconformities punctuating the lower-middle Cambrian transition in the Atlas Rift, Morocco

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Álvaro, J. Javier; Ezzouhairi, Hassan; Clausen, Sébastien; Ribeiro, M. Luisa; Solá, Rita

    2015-04-01

    The Cambrian Tamdroust and Bab n'Ali Volcanic Complexes represent two magmatic episodes developed in the latest Ediacaran-Cambrian Atlas Rift of Morocco. Their rifting pulses were accompanied by accumulation of volcanosedimentary edifices (dominated by effusive lava flows in the former and explosive acidic aprons in the latter) associated with active tilting and uplift. Sealing of their peneplaned horst-and-graben palaeotopographies led to the onset of distinct onlapping geometries and angular discordances capping eroded basements ranging from the Ediacaran Ouarzazate Supergroup to the Cambrian Asrir Formation. Previous interpretations of these discordances as pull-apart or compressive events are revised here and reinterpreted in an extensional (rifting) context associated with active volcanism. The record of erosive unconformities, stratigraphic gaps, condensed beds and onlapping patterns across the traditional "lower-middle Cambrian" (or Cambrian Series 2-3) transition of the Atlas Rift must be taken into consideration for global chronostratigraphic correlation based on their trilobite content.

  10. Patterns of Quaternary uplift of the Corinth rift southern border (N Peloponnese, Greece) revealed by fluvial landscape morphometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Demoulin, A.; Beckers, A.; Hubert-Ferrari, A.

    2015-10-01

    The Rift of Corinth is a world-class example of young active rifting and, as such, is an ideal natural laboratory of continental extension. However, though much investigated for two decades, several aspects of the mechanisms at work are still poorly understood. The aim of this paper is a detailed morphometric study of the fluvial landscape response to the tectonic uplift of the rift southern shoulder in order to reconstruct the rift's Quaternary evolution, with special attention to timing, location, and intensity of uplift episodes. Based on the use of a large set of catchment and long profile metrics complemented by the new R/SR integrative approach of the regional drainage network, we identified three distinct episodes of uplift of the northern Peloponnese coastal tract, of which the intermediate one, dated around 0.35-0.4 Ma, is only recorded in the topography of the central part of the rift shoulder, and the youngest one appears to have propagated from east to west over the last 10-20 ka. While net uplift remained minimum in the eastern part of the study area during the whole Quaternary, it shows a clear maximum in the central part of the rift shoulder since 0.4 Ma and an eastward shift of this maximum in recent times. Maximum uplift rates calculated from the morphometric data are of > 1.05 and 2-5 mm year- 1 for, the mid-Middle Pleistocene and Holocene uplift episodes, respectively. The morphometric evidence reveals an onshore uplift history remarkably consistent with the rift evolution reconstructed from other data sets. In the long term, it shows a stable pattern of maximum activity in the central part of the rift, confirming previous conclusions about the absence of rift propagation. In the short term, it sheds light on a possible E-W migration of the zone of recent uplift, suggesting that in the near future fault activity and seismic hazard might concentrate in the Heliki-Aegion area, at the western tip of this uplift wave.

  11. Stratigraphy and rifting history of the Mesozoic-Cenozoic Anza rift, Kenya

    SciTech Connect

    Winn, R.D. Jr.; Steinmetz, J.C. ); Kerekgyarto, W.L. )

    1993-11-01

    Lithological and compositional relationships, thicknesses, and palynological data from drilling cuttings from five wells in the Anza rift, Kenya, indicate active rifting during the Late Cretaceous and Eocene-Oligocene. The earlier rifting possibly started in the Santonian-Coniacian, primarily occurred in the Campanian, and probably extended into the Maastrichtian. Anza rift sedimentation was in lacustrine, lacustrine-deltaic, fluvial, and flood-basin environments. Inferred synrift intervals in wells are shalier, thicker, more compositionally immature, and more poorly sorted than Lower Cretaceous ( )-lower Upper Cretaceous and upper Oligocene( )-Miocene interrift deposits. Synrift sandstone is mostly feldspathic or arkosic wacke. Sandstone deposited in the Anza basin during nonrift periods is mostly quartz arenite, and is coarser and has a high proportion of probable fluvial deposits relative to other facies. Volcanic debris is absent in sedimentary strata older than Pliocene-Holocene, although small Cretaceous intrusions are present in the basin. Cretaceous sandstone is cemented in places by laumontite, possibly recording Campanian extension. Early Cretaceous history of the Anza basin is poorly known because of the limited strata sampled; Jurassic units were not reached. Cretaceous rifting in the Anza basin was synchronous with rifting in Sudan and with the breakup and separation of South America and Africa; these events likely were related. Eocene-Oligocene extension in the Anza basin reflects different stresses. The transition from active rifting to passive subsidence in the Anza basin at the end of the Neogene, in turn, records a reconfigured response of east African plates to stresses and is correlated with formation of the East Africa rift.

  12. Rupture Zones of Strong Earthquakes In The Corinth Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Papadopoulos, G. A.; Kouskouna, V.; Plessa, A.

    Ruptures zones of the strong (M 8805; 6) earthquakes that occurred in the Corinth rift in the last three hundred years have been determined on the basis of aftershock epi- central distributions , intensity distributions and observations regarding seismogenic ground failures and tsunamis. The space U time distribution of the rupture zones indi- cates that (1) for time intervals of about 50yrs the rupture zones do not overlap; over- alpping appear, however, in longer time intervals , (2) there is a trend of the seismic activity to decrease westwards , and (3) particular regions constitute potential seis- mic gaps , like the Kiato UXylocastro region in the south coast of the Corinth Gulf, where the large 1402 earthquake occurred, and the Livadia U Desfina region where the A.D.361 and 551 large earthquakes possibly took place.

  13. Rift Valley Fever during Rainy Seasons, Madagascar, 2008 and 2009

    PubMed Central

    Andriamandimby, Soa Fy; Randrianarivo-Solofoniaina, Armand Eugène; Jeanmaire, Elisabeth M.; Ravololomanana, Lisette; Razafimanantsoa, Lanto Tiana; Rakotojoelinandrasana, Tsanta; Razainirina, Josette; Hoffmann, Jonathan; Ravalohery, Jean-Pierre; Rafisandratantsoa, Jean-Théophile; Rollin, Pierre E.

    2010-01-01

    During 2 successive rainy seasons, January 2008 through May 2008 and November 2008 through March 2009, Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) caused outbreaks in Madagascar. Human and animal infections were confirmed on the northern and southern coasts and in the central highlands. Analysis of partial sequences from RVFV strains showed that all were similar to the strains circulating in Kenya during 2006–2007. A national cross-sectional serologic survey among slaughterhouse workers at high risk showed that RVFV circulation during the 2008 outbreaks included all of the Malagasy regions and that the virus has circulated in at least 92 of Madagascar’s 111 districts. To better predict and respond to RVF outbreaks in Madagascar, further epidemiologic studies are needed, such as RVFV complete genome analysis, ruminant movement mapping, and surveillance implementation. PMID:20507747

  14. Ultrastructural pathology of human liver in Rift Valley fever.

    PubMed

    Shraim, Mubarak Al; Eid, Refaat; Radad, Khaled; Saeed, Noora

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a zoonotic disease that primarily affects ruminant animals and can also cause fatal disease in humans. In the current report, we present the ultrastructural changes in the liver of a man aged 60 years who died from RVF in the Aseer Central Hospital, Abha, Saudi Arabia. The main hepatic changes by transmission electron microscopy included the presence of 95-115 nm electron-dense particles consistent with RVF virions, nuclear condensation, vacuolar degeneration, lipid droplet accumulation and mitochondrial damage and dilation. There were also viral inclusion bodies with electron-dense aggregates, dilation of intercellular spaces, damage of sinusoidal microvilli with widening of space of Disse, dilation of bile canaliculi and increasing number of phagolysosomes. PMID:27485877

  15. The Midcontinent Rift and Grenville connection

    SciTech Connect

    Cambray, F.W.; Fujita, K. . Dept. of Geological Sciences)

    1994-04-01

    The Mid-Proterozoic, Midcontinent Rift System (MRS) is delineated by an inverted U shaped gravity and magnetic anomaly. It terminates in southeast Michigan but a less continuous series of anomalies and sediments, the Eastcontinent Rift occur on a north-south line through Ohio and Kentucky. The geometry allows for a north-south opening, the Lake Superior section being orthogonal to opening, the western arm transtensional and the north-south trending eastern arm a transform boundary offset by pull-apart basins. The opening and closing of the rift overlaps in time with the Grenville Orogeny. Grenville age rocks can also be found in the Llano uplift of Texas. The authors propose a model to explain the temporal and geographic association of the opening and closing of the MRS with the Grenville Orogeny that involves irregular suturing between two continental masses. Initiation of Grenville suturing, associated with south dipping subduction, in the northeast and in the Llano area of Texas would leave portion of unclosed ocean in between. Tensional stresses in the continental crust adjacent to the oceanic remnant could lead to its fragmentation and the formation of the MRS. The remaining oceanic lithosphere would eventually subduct, limiting the opening of the MRS. Continued convergence of the plates would induce compressional stresses thus accounting for the deformation of the MRS. An analogy is made with more recent opening of the Red Sea, Gulf of Aden Rift System in association with irregular collision along the Zagros-Bitlis Sutures.

  16. Molecular Rift: Virtual Reality for Drug Designers.

    PubMed

    Norrby, Magnus; Grebner, Christoph; Eriksson, Joakim; Boström, Jonas

    2015-11-23

    Recent advances in interaction design have created new ways to use computers. One example is the ability to create enhanced 3D environments that simulate physical presence in the real world--a virtual reality. This is relevant to drug discovery since molecular models are frequently used to obtain deeper understandings of, say, ligand-protein complexes. We have developed a tool (Molecular Rift), which creates a virtual reality environment steered with hand movements. Oculus Rift, a head-mounted display, is used to create the virtual settings. The program is controlled by gesture-recognition, using the gaming sensor MS Kinect v2, eliminating the need for standard input devices. The Open Babel toolkit was integrated to provide access to powerful cheminformatics functions. Molecular Rift was developed with a focus on usability, including iterative test-group evaluations. We conclude with reflections on virtual reality's future capabilities in chemistry and education. Molecular Rift is open source and can be downloaded from GitHub. PMID:26558887

  17. Diagnostic approaches for Rift Valley Fever

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Disease outbreaks caused by arthropod-borne animal viruses (arboviruses) resulting in significant livestock and economic losses world-wide appear to be increasing. Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus (RVFV) is an important arbovirus that causes lethal disease in cattle, camels, sheep and goats in Sub-Saha...

  18. Magma-assisted rifting in Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Kendall, J-M; Stuart, G W; Ebinger, C J; Bastow, I D; Keir, D

    2005-01-13

    The rifting of continents and evolution of ocean basins is a fundamental component of plate tectonics, yet the process of continental break-up remains controversial. Plate driving forces have been estimated to be as much as an order of magnitude smaller than those required to rupture thick continental lithosphere. However, Buck has proposed that lithospheric heating by mantle upwelling and related magma production could promote lithospheric rupture at much lower stresses. Such models of mechanical versus magma-assisted extension can be tested, because they predict different temporal and spatial patterns of crustal and upper-mantle structure. Changes in plate deformation produce strain-enhanced crystal alignment and increased melt production within the upper mantle, both of which can cause seismic anisotropy. The Northern Ethiopian Rift is an ideal place to test break-up models because it formed in cratonic lithosphere with minor far-field plate stresses. Here we present evidence of seismic anisotropy in the upper mantle of this rift zone using observations of shear-wave splitting. Our observations, together with recent geological data, indicate a strong component of melt-induced anisotropy with only minor crustal stretching, supporting the magma-assisted rifting model in this area of initially cold, thick continental lithosphere. PMID:15650736

  19. The 1973 Ethiopian-Rift geodimeter survey

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mohr, P. A.

    1974-01-01

    Remeasurement of the Adama, Lake Langana, and Arba Minch (Lake Margherita) geodimeter networks in 1973 has enabled Mohr's interpretation concerning possible surface ground deformation in the Ethiopian rift to be considerably developed. Extension appears to have occurred across the Mojjo-Adama horst at a rate of about 1 cm yr/1. The opposing rims of the Adama graben have not moved significantly relative to one another (between 1969 and 1973), but stations on the sliced graben floor show possible movement with a large rift-trend component. In the Wolenchiti quadrilateral, significant movement of station RABBIT is confirmed, but the radical change of vector (that of 1970-1971 to that of 1971-1973) casts doubt on a tectonic cause and seems to indicate that stations on steep hillslopes are liable to be unstable. South of the quadrilateral and east of the Adama graben, alternating rift-trend zones of extension and shortening appear to coexist. In the Lake Langana network, significant movements of the order of 0.5 cm yr/1 are directed perpendicular to the rift floor faulting.

  20. Prediction of a Rift Valley fever Outbreak

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Using satellite measurements to detect elevated sea surface temperatures (SSTs) and subsequent elevated normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) data in Africa, we predicted an outbreak of Rift Valley fever (RVF) in humans and animals in the Horn of Africa during September 2006-May 2007. We det...

  1. Rift Valley fever: A neglected zoonotic disease?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a serious viral disease of animals and humans in Africa and the Middle East that is transmitted by mosquitoes. First isolated in Kenya during an outbreak in 1930, subsequent outbreaks have had a significant impact on animal and human health, as well as national economies. ...

  2. Mesozoic rift basins in western desert of Egypt, their southern extension and impact on future exploration

    SciTech Connect

    Taha, M.A. )

    1988-08-01

    Rift basins are a primary target of exploration in east, central, and west Africa. These intracratonic rift basins range in age from the Triassic to the Neogene and are filled with lagoonal-lacustrine sand-shale sequences. Several rift basins may be present in the Western Desert of Egypt. In the northeastern African platform, the Mesozoic Tethyan strand lines were previously interpreted to have limited southern extension onto the continent. This concept, based upon a relatively limited amount of subsurface data, has directed and focused the exploration for oil and gas to the northernmost 120 km of the Western Desert of Egypt. Recent well and geophysical data indicate a southerly extension of mesozoic rift basins several hundred kilometers inland from the Mediterranean Sea. Shushan/Faghur and Abu Gharadig/Bahrein basins may represent subparallel Mesozoic basins, trending northeast-southwest. Marine Oxfordian-Kimmeridgian sediments were recently reported from wells drilled approximately 500 km south of the present-day Mediterranean shoreline. The link of these basins with the Sirte basin to the southwest in Libya is not well understood. Exploration is needed to evaluate the hydrocarbon potential of such basins.

  3. Broad accommodation of rift-related extension recorded by dyke intrusion in Saudi Arabia

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pallister, J.S.; McCausland, W.A.; Jonsson, Sigurjon; Lu, Zhiming; Zahran, H.M.; El, Hadidy S.; Aburukbah, A.; Stewart, I.C.F.; Lundgren, P.R.; White, R.A.; Moufti, M.R.H.

    2010-01-01

    The extensive harrat lava province of Arabia formed during the past 30 million years in response to Red Sea rifting and mantle upwelling. The area was regarded as seismically quiet, but between April and June 2009 a swarm of more than 30,000 earthquakes struck one of the lava fields in the province, Harrat Lunayyir, northwest Saudi Arabia. Concerned that larger damaging earthquakes might occur, the Saudi Arabian government evacuated 40,000 people from the region. Here we use geologic, geodetic and seismic data to show that the earthquake swarm resulted from magmatic dyke intrusion. We document a surface fault rupture that is 8 km long with 91 cm of offset. Surface deformation is best modelled by the shallow intrusion of a north-west trending dyke that is about 10 km long. Seismic waves generated during the earthquakes exhibit overlapping very low- and high-frequency components. We interpret the low frequencies to represent intrusion of magma and the high frequencies to represent fracturing of the crystalline basement rocks. Rather than extension being accommodated entirely by the central Red Sea rift axis, we suggest that the broad deformation observed in Harrat Lunayyir indicates that rift margins can remain as active sites of extension throughout rifting. Our analyses allowed us to forecast the likelihood of a future eruption or large earthquake in the region and informed the decisions made by the Saudi Arabian government to return the evacuees.

  4. Prebreakup geology of the Gulf of Mexico-Caribbean: Its relation to Triassic and Jurassic rift systems of the region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bartok, Peter

    1993-01-01

    A review of the prebreakup geology of west central Pangea, comprising northern South America, the Gulf of Mexico, and West Africa, combined with a study of the Mesozoic rift trends of the region confirms a relation between the rift systems and the underlying older grain of deformation. The prebreakup analysis focuses attention on the Precambrian, early Paleozoic, and late Paleozoic tectonic events affecting the region and assumes a Pindell fit. Two late Precambrian orogenic belts are observed in west central Pangea. Along the northern South American margin and Yucatan a paleo northeast trending Pan-African aged fold belt is documented. A second system is observed along West Africa extending from the High Atlas to the Mauritanides and Rockelides. Similar aged orogenies in the Appalachians are compared. During the late Paleozoic, renewed orogenic activity, associated with the Gondwana-Laurentia suture, affected large segments of west central Pangea. The general trend of the system is northeast-southwest and essentially parallels the Guayana craton and West African and eastern North American cratons. Mesozoic rifling closely followed either the Precambrian trends or the late Paleozoic orogenic belt. The Triassic component focused along the western portions of the Gulf of Mexico continuing into eastern Mexico and western South America. The Jurassic rift trend followed along the separation between Yucatan and northern South America. At Lake Maracaibo the Jurassic rift system eventually overlaps the Triassic rifts. The Jurassic rift resulted in the "Hispanic Corridor" that permitted Tethyan and Pacific marine faunas to mix at a time when the Gulf of Mexico underwent continental sedimentation.

  5. Unraveling the Interaction Between Mantle Processes and the Tectono-Sedimentary Evolution During Final Rifting Based on the Study of Remnants of the Alpine Tethys Rifted Margins Exposed in the Alps

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mohn, G.; Masini, E.; Manatschal, G.; Muntener, O.; Kusznir, N.

    2007-12-01

    The tectonic, sedimentary and isostatic evolution of distal rifted margins are poorly constrained and the available data from present-day magma-poor rifted margins, such as the Iberia-Newfoundland or the Southern Atlantic margins suggest that its evolution is complex and very different from that of proximal margins. In contrast to present-day rifted margins, where rift structures are covered by sediments and are at abyssal depth, remnants of ancient margins preserved in collisional orogens bear, if not overprinted by later deformation, important information on the stratigraphic, tectonic and mantle evolution during rifting. This is particularly true for the Adriatic and parts of the European margins exposed in the Alps in Central Europe. From these margins remnants of the first oceanic crust, the subcontinental mantle, from lower crustal rocks, detachment systems, remnants of the distal and proximal margins and the stratigraphic record of rifting, including pre-, syn- and post-rift sediments are preserved. A paleogeographic reconstruction of all these structures including the associated stratigraphy and the underlying basement represents a unique opportunity to study the relations between shallow crustal and mantle processes during rifting. Previous studies suggested that the margins in the Alps resulted from a complex poly-phase evolution that initiated with distributed stretching (220 to 190 Ma), continued with localized thinning (around 180 Ma) and terminated with exhumation of mantle rocks and first MOR-type magmatism (at 160 Ma). Thus, rifting leading to breakup and opening of the Alpine Tethys was shown to be the result of strain localization and to include a transition from decoupled to coupled deformation in which detachment faulting played an important role. How crustal thinning is linked in detail with strain localization, uplift of distal domains and melt infiltration in the rising mantle during crustal thinning is, however, not yet understood. We will

  6. Petrofabrics of olivine in a rift axis and rift shoulder and their implications for seismic anisotropy beneath the Rio Grande rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Munjae; Jung, Haemyeong; Kil, Youngwoo

    2015-04-01

    Mantle-derived xenoliths associated with continental rifting can provide important information about the mantle structure and the physicochemical properties of deformation processes in the upper mantle. Metasomatized spinel peridotites from Adam's Diggings (AD) at a rift shoulder and Elephant Butte (EB) at a rift axis in the Rio Grande rift (RGR) were investigated to understand the deformation processes and seismic anisotropy occurring in the upper mantle. As determined through analysis of the lattice preferred orientation (LPO) of olivine by using a scanning electron microscope equipped with electron backscatter diffraction (SEM/EBSD), AD peridotites exhibited C-type LPO of olivine indicating a dominant slip system of (100)[001] at the rift shoulder, whereas EB peridotites exhibited A-type LPO indicating a dominant slip system of (010)[100] at the rift axis. Both geochemical data and microstructural observations indicate that the localized mantle enrichment processes, including melts with hydrous fluids, controlled multiple mantle metasomatisms and deformation of rocks under wet conditions (with olivine C-type LPO) at the rift shoulder (AD), whereas mantle depletion by decompression partial melting caused deformation of rocks under dry conditions (with olivine A-type LPO) at the rift axis (EB). These observations provide evidence for localized hydration and physicochemical heterogeneity of the upper mantle in the Rio Grande rift (RGR) zone. Seismic anisotropy observed beneath this zone can be attributed to the transtensional rupture, such as inhomogeneous stretching, and the petrofabrics of olivine beneath the study area.

  7. Structural inheritance, segmentation, and rift localization in the Gulf of Aden oblique rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bellahsen, Nicolas; Leroy, Sylvie; Autin, Julia; d'Acremont, Elia; Razin, Philippe; Husson, Laurent; Pik, Raphael; Watremez, Louise; Baurion, Celine; Beslier, Marie-Odile; Khanbari, Khaled; Ahmed, Abdulhakim

    2013-04-01

    The structural evolution of the Gulf of Aden passive margins was controlled by its oblique divergence kinematics, inherited structures, and the Afar hot spot. The rifting between Arabia and Somalia started at 35 Ma just before the hot spot paroxysm (at 30Ma) and lasted until 18Ma, when oceanic spreading started. Fieldwork suggests that rift parallel normal faults initiated in the (future) distal margins, after a first stage of distributed rifting, and witness the rift localization, as confirmed by 4-layer analogue models. These faults arise either from crust or lithosphere scale buoyancy forces that are strongly controlled by the mantle temperature under the influence of the Afar hot spot. This implies a transition from a distributed mode to a localized one, sharper, both in space and time, in the West (close to the hot spot) than in the East (far away from the hot spot). In this framework, first order transform F.Z. are here (re-) defined by the fact that they deform continental crust. In the Gulf of Aden, as well as in other continental margins, it appears that these F.Z. are often, if not always, located at continental transfer or "transform" fault zones. Our detailed field-study of an offshore transfer fault zone in the southeastern Gulf of Aden (Socotra Island) shows that these structures are long-lived since early rifting until post rift times. During the early rifting, they are inherited structures reactivated as oblique normal faults before accommodating strike-slip motion. During the Ocean-Continent Transition (OCT) formation ("post syn-rift" times), a significant uplift occurred in the transfer fault zone footwall as shown by stratigraphic and LT thermochronology data. Second order transform F.Z. are defined as deforming only the OCT, thus initiated at the moment of its formation. In the western Gulf of Aden, the hot spot provoked a rift localization strongly oblique to the divergence and, as a consequence, several second order transform F.Z. formed (as

  8. A new tectono-sedimentary model for Cretaceous mixed nonmarine-marine oil-prone Komombo Rift, South Egypt

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Selim, S. S.

    2016-07-01

    The Komombo Basin is a recently discovered mixed nonmarine-marine, petroliferous basin of Cretaceous age in South Egypt. It is an asymmetrical half graben, synchronous with the Neothys opening and filled with up to 4 km of continental to open marine strata ranging from Early to Late Cretaceous. Despite its great relevance, no detailed sedimentological study concerning this basin has been carried out to date. Here, we present an integrated approach to the borehole and core data, as well as unique outcrop sections to construct a new detailed sedimentological interpretation on depositional systems, controls on basin evolution, basin configuration and regional tectonic setting. Seven depositional systems were recognized: (I) a fluvial fan system, (II) a braidplain system, (III) a siliciclastic lacustrine system, (IV) a lacustrine/lagoonal system, (V) a fluvial-estuarine system, (VI) a tidally affected delta, and (VII) an open marine system. The Komombo Basin evolution can be compartmentalized into three main rifting phases: the Berriasian-Early Barremian, Late Barremian, and Aptian-Albian. The first and third rifting phases are comparable with the rifting phases reported for several basins in North and Central Africa. The second rifting phase represents a transitional event between the other two phases. The first three depositional systems consist mainly of continental siliciclastics and are dominant in the Berriasian-Early Barremian and Late Barremian rifting phases. The lacustrine/lagoon and fluvial-estuarine systems correspond to the Aptian-Albian rifting phase, while the Campanian-Maastrichtian open-shelf deposits represents the post-rift stage.

  9. Integration of geophysical and geochemical data for the study of the North-Est Rift dynamics on Mount Etna volcano

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tripaldi, Simona; Balasco, Marianna; Lapenna, Vincenzo; Loddo, Mariano; Moretti, Pierpaolo; Neri, Marco; Piscitelli, Sabatino; Romano, Gerardo; Schiavone, Domenico; Siniscalchi, Agata

    2010-05-01

    Mount Etna volcano is located at the front of the Apennine-Maghrebian Chain, along the Malta Escarpment, and lies on the Pliocene-Pleistocene foredeep deposits. The apparatus is characterized by a central conduit divided, at surface, into four summit craters, with a maximum elevation of 3329 m above sea level. In the upper part (>1500 m), three main "rift zones" can be identified: the NE Rift, the S Rift and the W Rift. These structures are probably shallow, do not tap deep magma and are usually directly fed by the central conduit, rather than from an underlying shallow magma chamber. The volcano is characterized by the displacement of its eastern to southern flanks, involving an on-shore area of >700 km2. This is confined to the north by the Pernicana fault system (PFS). The PFS, located on the NE sector of Mt. Etna, is >18 km long, from the NE Rift to the coastline. The western PFS is seismogenetic, while the eastern PFS undergoes creep movements. In its westernmost section, the PFS is divided into two main segments, the more northerly of these starting from the Monte Nero area of the NE Rift and the more southerly from Piano Provenzana. The PFS is kinematically connected, with a feedback mechanism, to eruptions occurring on the NE Rift. In spite of this relationship, the PFS has shown continuous activity between 1947 and 2002, a period when no eruptions occurred on the NE Rift, with major surface fracturing and seismic activity in 1984-1988. Geophysical-geochemical investigation were conducted in the area where PFS is connected with the NE Rift, including the areas characterized by a consistent slip, as well as those structures through which the motion occurs. The aim of this work is to provide a multidisciplinary frame to characterize this dynamic and structural natural system. Magnetotelluric, geoelectric, self-potential and and soil gas emissions measurements give a comprehensive view on the geometry and depth of the lithological units together with fluid

  10. At the tip of a propagating rift - The offshore East African Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Franke, Dieter; Jokat, Wilfried; Ladage, Stefan; Stollhofen, Harald; Klimke, Jennifer; Lutz, Ruediger; Mahanjane, Stefane; Ehrhardt, Axel; Schreckenberger, Bernd

    2016-04-01

    Numerous studies have addressed various aspects of the East African Rift system (EARS) but surprisingly few the offshore continuation of the south-eastern branch of the rift into the Mozambique Channel. Here, we present new evidence for neotectonic deformation derived from modern seismic reflection data and supported by additional geophysical data. The Kerimbas Graben offshore northern Mozambique is the most prominent manifestation of sub-recent extensional deformation. The seismic reflection data reveals that recent normal faulting often utilizes preexisting, deeply buried half-graben structures which likely are related to the formation of the Somali Basin. The ~30 km wide and ~150 km long symmetric graben is in a stage where the linkage of scattered normal faults already did happen, resulting in increased displacement and accommodation of most of the extension across the basin. However, deep earthquakes below the rift indicate a strong and still preserved lithospheric mantle. Extension is becoming diffuse where an onshore suture, subdividing the northern from the southern metamorphic basement onshore Mozambique, is closest to the offshore rift. It appears likely that this suture is the origin for the variation in rifting style, indicating that mantle fabric resulting from a Cambrian collision has been preserved as mechanical anisotropy of the lithospheric mantle. Further south the rift focuses in an about 30 km wide half-graben. An important finding is that the entire offshore branch of the EARS lacks significant volcanism. Along the offshore EARS there are only negligible indications for recent volcanism in the reflection seismic data such as sills and dikes. Apparently the "Comoros mantle plume" (French and Romanowicz, 2015) has a very minor influence on the progressive extensional deformation along the northern Mozambique continental margin, leading eventually to breakup sometimes in the future. Combining structural with earthquake data reveals that the magma

  11. Forensic investigation of rift-to-drift transitions and volcanic rifted margins birth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meyer, R.; Hertogen, J.

    2008-12-01

    Volcanic rifted margins (VRM) reflect excess magmatism generated during the rift-to-drift transition of a continental rift system evolving into a Mid-Ocean Ridge (MOR). As a result many VRM (e.g. NAIP and CAMP) are recognized as Large Igneous Provinces (LIP). The prominent structural characteristics of VRM are Continental Flood Basalts, High-Velocity Lower Crustal bodies (HVLC) and Seaward Dipping Reflector Sequences (SDRS). However, the causes of these anomalously high eruption rates and magma volumes are presently poorly understood. Controversial issue opinions are based on two competing hypotheses: 1) Mantle plume related mechanisms where the excess magmatism results from elevated mantle temperatures; and 2) Rift induced small scale convection processes causing temperature anomalies and enhancing the mantle rock flux through the melt window. Largely because of difficulties to sample oceanic basement at VRM -due to thick sediment covers- the composition of rift-to-drift transition magmas is generally poorly constrained. We reviewed the geodynamic histories and magma compositions from well known VRM (e.g. NE Australia, E USA, Madagascar) and compared these data with own geochemical data from different NE Atlantic tectono-magmatic VRM zones. These comparisons point to a consistent, general VRM formation model. This model has to explain the primary observation, that geological long periods of extension have been reported -in all investigated VRM areas- prior to the breakup. Extensional far field stress looks to be the main geodynamic cause for continental breakup. Small scale convection during the late phase of a continental rift system is probably the key process generating excess magmatism in LIP related to rift-to-drift transitions.

  12. Volcanic rifts bracketing volcanoes: an analogue answer to an old unsolved problem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mussetti, Giulio; van Wyk de Vries, Benjamin; Corti, Giacomo; Hagos, Miruts

    2015-04-01

    It has been observed in Central America that many volcanoes have volcanic alignments and faults at their east and west feet. A quick look at many rifts indicates that this also occurs elsewhere. While this feature has been noted for at least 30 years, no explanation has ever really been convincingly put forward. During analogue experiments on rifting volcanoes we have mixed the presence of a volcanic edifice with an underlying intrusive complex. The models use a rubber sheet that is extended and provides a broad area of extension (in contrast to many moving plate models that have one localised velocity discontinuity). This well suits the situation in many rifts and diffuse strike-slip zones (i.e. Central America and the East African Rift). We have noted the formation of localised extension bracketing the volcano, the location of which depends on the position of the analogue intrusion. Thus, we think we have found the answer to this long standing puzzle. We propose that diffuse extension of a volcano and intrusive complex generates two zones of faulting at the edge of the intrusion along the axis of greatest extensional strain. These serve to create surface faulting and preferential pathways for dykes. This positioning may also create craters aligned along the axis of extension, which is another notable feature of volcanoes in Central America. Paired volcanoes and volcanic uplifts in the Danakil region of Ethiopia may also be a consequence of such a process and lead us to draw some new preliminary cross sections of the Erta Ale volcanic range.

  13. Heat flow in the Keweenawan rift system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perry, C.; Mareschal, J.; Jaupart, C. P.

    2012-12-01

    The emplacement of large volumes of mafic volcanic rocks during the Keweenawan rifting has modified the average crustal composition and affects the present steady state heat flux in the region. We have combined new heat flux measurements in the Superior Province of the Canadian Shield and previously published data to characterize the heat flux field around the Keweenawan rift system. For the Nipigon embayment, North of lake Superior in Ontario, mafic intrusions associated with the Keweenawan rifting have resulted in an increase in the volume of mafic rocks in the crust and caused a very small <3mW m-2 decrease in the mean heat flux. There is a very marked decrease in the heat flux (Δ Q ≈ 20mW m-2) beneath the western half of Lake Superior and to the west. The very low values of the surface heat flux (≈ 22mW m-2 correlate with the maximum Bouguer gravity anomaly. The heat flux at the base of the crust in the Canadian Shield has been determined from surface heat flux, heat production, and crustal stucture to be ≈ 15 mW m-2. In the Keweenawan rift, the surface heat flux is only a few mW m-2 higher than the mantle heat flux, which implies that the contribution of the entire crustal column to the surface heat flux is small and that the crust is exclusively made up of depleted mafic volcanic rocks. In the eastern part and northeast of Lake Superior, there is a marked increase in heat flux that correlates with a lower Bouguer anomaly. Local high heat flux anomalies due to intrusions by felsic rocks are superposed with a long wavelength trend of higher heat flow suggesting a more felsic crustal composition in the eastern part of the Keweenawan rift. Simple models suggest that such a thick dense volcanic pile as accumulated in the Keweenawan rift is almost invariably unstable and that very particular conditions were required for it to stabilize in the crust.

  14. Controls on (anomalous) topography in rifted margin settings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huismans, Ritske S.

    2015-04-01

    Contrasting end members of volcanic and non-volcanic passive margin formation show a large variability in basin shape and structure, subsidence history, and associated topographic evolution of the onshore rifted margins. The large range of structural style and associated topography of these systems imply a strong variability in the underlying thermo-mechanical conditions at the time of rifting. Rift - passive margin styles ranging from narrow to ultra wide are explained using forward numerical models with varying rheological structure, with strong crust lithosphere leading to narrow rift formation associated with highly elevated rift shoulders and conversely weak crust lithosphere resulting in highly stretched wide rifted conjugate margins and little flank morphology. In some cases rifted margins appear to indicate the formation of anomalous post rift topography. A number of mechanisms including small-scale convective removal of the lower lithosphere, lithosphere counter-flow, and dynamic topography, have been invoked to explain the anomalous topography. Forward numerical models are used to predict the magnitude and characteristic topography associated with each of these mechanisms and to evaluate their potential for explaining these apparent anomalous characteristics of rifts and rifted margins.

  15. Negative gravity anomaly over spreading rift valleys: Mid-Atlantic Ridge at 26°N

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bowin, Carl; Milligan, Julie

    1985-03-01

    A pronounced negative free-air gravity anomaly commonly occurs over the median valley of slow spreading ocean ridges. Previous results, using Wiener filtering and cross-spectral analysis techniques for the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, obtained estimates of the elastic plate thickness in the range of 7-13 km and the existence of a residual negative gravity anomaly over the median rift valley, suggesting that the rift valley has a response function different than the remainder of the spreading ridge. In this paper we have improved the derivation of the topography-gravity admittance function for spreading ocean crust by carefully avoiding several sources of spectral splattering when processing the data: (1) selecting data from a cruise that followed a flowline of central North Atlantic relative plate motion and hence is least corrupted by fracture zones; and (2) accounting for the difference in distance between the gravity meter and the regional variation in elevation as the ridge crest is traversed. Improvements of lesser importance include the use of cubic splines to interpolate to equally spaced data rather than linear interpolation, and correction of the free-air anomaly values for long-wavelength variations of the indirect effect. Comparison of the resulting admittance function to elastic flexure response functions suggests an elastic plate thickness of about 8 km. The improved admittance function, when convolved with the ridge topography, provides a predicted gravity profile that accounts very well for the negative anomaly over the rift valley. Therefore, the isostatic response function for the rift valley is similar to that for the topography away from the rift valley.

  16. Assessing the Threat of Amphibian Chytrid Fungus in the Albertine Rift: Past, Present and Future

    PubMed Central

    Seimon, Tracie A.; Ayebare, Samuel; Sekisambu, Robert; Muhindo, Emmanuel; Mitamba, Guillain; Greenbaum, Eli; Menegon, Michele; Pupin, Fabio; McAloose, Denise; Ammazzalorso, Alyssa; Meirte, Danny; Lukwago, Wilbur; Behangana, Mathias; Seimon, Anton; Plumptre, Andrew J.

    2015-01-01

    Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), the cause of chytridiomycosis, is a pathogenic fungus that is found worldwide and is a major contributor to amphibian declines and extinctions. We report results of a comprehensive effort to assess the distribution and threat of Bd in one of the Earth’s most important biodiversity hotspots, the Albertine Rift in central Africa. In herpetological surveys conducted between 2010 and 2014, 1018 skin swabs from 17 amphibian genera in 39 sites across the Albertine Rift were tested for Bd by PCR. Overall, 19.5% of amphibians tested positive from all sites combined. Skin tissue samples from 163 amphibians were examined histologically; of these two had superficial epidermal intracorneal fungal colonization and lesions consistent with the disease chytridiomycosis. One amphibian was found dead during the surveys, and all others encountered appeared healthy. We found no evidence for Bd-induced mortality events, a finding consistent with other studies. To gain a historical perspective about Bd in the Albertine Rift, skin swabs from 232 museum-archived amphibians collected as voucher specimens from 1925–1994 were tested for Bd. Of these, one sample was positive; an Itombwe River frog (Phrynobatrachus asper) collected in 1950 in the Itombwe highlands. This finding represents the earliest record of Bd in the Democratic Republic of Congo. We modeled the distribution of Bd in the Albertine Rift using MaxEnt software, and trained our model for improved predictability. Our model predicts that Bd is currently widespread across the Albertine Rift, with moderate habitat suitability extending into the lowlands. Under climatic modeling scenarios our model predicts that optimal habitat suitability of Bd will decrease causing a major range contraction of the fungus by 2080. Our baseline data and modeling predictions are important for comparative studies, especially if significant changes in amphibian health status or climactic conditions are

  17. SAGE 2010 Magnetotelluric Soundings Provide New Constraints on Rio Grande Rift Mid-Crustal Conductor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Strader, A. E.; Martin, C. L.; Thomas, T.; Bedrosian, P. A.; Pellerin, L.; Jiracek, G. R.

    2010-12-01

    Since the inception of the Summer of Applied Geophysical Experience (SAGE) program in 1983, long-period magnetotelluric (MT) soundings have imaged a pronounced mid-crustal conductor at 10-20 km depth within the central Rio Grande rift. Wideband MT soundings (0.01 to over 1000 s period) collected in 2010 extended the detection of this feature to nearly 100 km length along the rift axis in the vicinity of Santa Fe, New Mexico. The conductive anomaly is clearly defined in the longest periods of the mode identified as the transverse electric (TE) in the recently acquired MT data. The spatially-limited 2010 soundings in the Santo Domingo Basin do not allow two-dimensional (2-D) inversions; however, one-dimensional (1-D) inversion of TE mode measurements in conductive rift basins can yield good depth estimates of deep conductive layers as has been shown by 2-D rift MT modeling. Such 1-D inversions of the 2010 MT soundings yield ~20 km depth to the top of the mid-crustal conductor, 5-10 km deeper than 90 km to the north if 3-D effects are negligible. Estimated conductance of the Santo Domingo basin conductor is 2000 S with resistivities in the range of 2-10 ohm-m. An interpretation of the ubiquitous, mid-crustal conductor in the Rio Grande rift is interconnected, saline, aqueous fluid trapped in the ductile crust below the ~10 km-deep seismogenic zone after fluid release and upward ascent from an upwarped mantle.

  18. Assessing the Threat of Amphibian Chytrid Fungus in the Albertine Rift: Past, Present and Future.

    PubMed

    Seimon, Tracie A; Ayebare, Samuel; Sekisambu, Robert; Muhindo, Emmanuel; Mitamba, Guillain; Greenbaum, Eli; Menegon, Michele; Pupin, Fabio; McAloose, Denise; Ammazzalorso, Alyssa; Meirte, Danny; Lukwago, Wilbur; Behangana, Mathias; Seimon, Anton; Plumptre, Andrew J

    2015-01-01

    Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), the cause of chytridiomycosis, is a pathogenic fungus that is found worldwide and is a major contributor to amphibian declines and extinctions. We report results of a comprehensive effort to assess the distribution and threat of Bd in one of the Earth's most important biodiversity hotspots, the Albertine Rift in central Africa. In herpetological surveys conducted between 2010 and 2014, 1018 skin swabs from 17 amphibian genera in 39 sites across the Albertine Rift were tested for Bd by PCR. Overall, 19.5% of amphibians tested positive from all sites combined. Skin tissue samples from 163 amphibians were examined histologically; of these two had superficial epidermal intracorneal fungal colonization and lesions consistent with the disease chytridiomycosis. One amphibian was found dead during the surveys, and all others encountered appeared healthy. We found no evidence for Bd-induced mortality events, a finding consistent with other studies. To gain a historical perspective about Bd in the Albertine Rift, skin swabs from 232 museum-archived amphibians collected as voucher specimens from 1925-1994 were tested for Bd. Of these, one sample was positive; an Itombwe River frog (Phrynobatrachus asper) collected in 1950 in the Itombwe highlands. This finding represents the earliest record of Bd in the Democratic Republic of Congo. We modeled the distribution of Bd in the Albertine Rift using MaxEnt software, and trained our model for improved predictability. Our model predicts that Bd is currently widespread across the Albertine Rift, with moderate habitat suitability extending into the lowlands. Under climatic modeling scenarios our model predicts that optimal habitat suitability of Bd will decrease causing a major range contraction of the fungus by 2080. Our baseline data and modeling predictions are important for comparative studies, especially if significant changes in amphibian health status or climactic conditions are encountered

  19. Inland thinning of West Antarctic Ice Sheet steered along subglacial rifts.

    PubMed

    Bingham, Robert G; Ferraccioli, Fausto; King, Edward C; Larter, Robert D; Pritchard, Hamish D; Smith, Andrew M; Vaughan, David G

    2012-07-26

    Current ice loss from the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) accounts for about ten per cent of observed global sea-level rise. Losses are dominated by dynamic thinning, in which forcings by oceanic or atmospheric perturbations to the ice margin lead to an accelerated thinning of ice along the coastline. Although central to improving projections of future ice-sheet contributions to global sea-level rise, the incorporation of dynamic thinning into models has been restricted by lack of knowledge of basal topography and subglacial geology so that the rate and ultimate extent of potential WAIS retreat remains difficult to quantify. Here we report the discovery of a subglacial basin under Ferrigno Ice Stream up to 1.5 kilometres deep that connects the ice-sheet interior to the Bellingshausen Sea margin, and whose existence profoundly affects ice loss. We use a suite of ice-penetrating radar, magnetic and gravity measurements to propose a rift origin for the basin in association with the wider development of the West Antarctic rift system. The Ferrigno rift, overdeepened by glacial erosion, is a conduit which fed a major palaeo-ice stream on the adjacent continental shelf during glacial maxima. The palaeo-ice stream, in turn, eroded the 'Belgica' trough, which today routes warm open-ocean water back to the ice front to reinforce dynamic thinning. We show that dynamic thinning from both the Bellingshausen and Amundsen Sea region is being steered back to the ice-sheet interior along rift basins. We conclude that rift basins that cut across the WAIS margin can rapidly transmit coastally perturbed change inland, thereby promoting ice-sheet instability. PMID:22837002

  20. The Rwenzori Mountains of western Uganda - Aspects on the evolution of their remarkable morphology within the Albertine Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bauer, F. U.; Karl, M.; Glasmacher, U. A.; Nagudi, B.; Schumann, A.; Mroszewski, L.

    2012-09-01

    The Rwenzori Mountains form a narrow mountain range within the western branch of the East African Rift System. They rise to heights of more than 5000 m a.s.l. and are composed of Precambrian metamorphic rocks. Lacking a volcanic origin the Rwenzoris are regarded as an extreme example of rift flank uplift and a key area to study rift-related uplift processes within an extensional setting. To determine these processes and underlying rift dynamics, the presented study provides constraints on the temporal and spatial exhumation history of the Rwenzori Mts. Recent and former geomorphology is investigated, addressing geomorphologic proxies as well as the cooling history. Associated erosion rates are derived from thermochronological data, allowing constraining relief changes over time. It could be demonstrated, that inherited tectonic structures play a major role in routing erosion processes. The cooling history of the Rwenzori Mts derived from low-temperature thermochronology reaches back to Jurassic times. Final exhumation was recorded for Neogene times, with differentiated erosion and uplift movements during the last 10 Ma and a fast final uplift of the Rwenzoris in the near past, where erosion could not compensate for (Bauer et al., 2010a). This paper integrates geomorphologic and thermochronological constraints, in order to provide a basis for understanding the development of the evolution of the Albertine Rift area, with focus placed on the Mesozoic and Cenozoic history of the central Rwenzori Mts.

  1. Fault-Controlled Fluid Migration during Early-Stage Continental Rifting in the Magadi Basin, Kenya

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muirhead, J.; Lee, H.; Fischer, T. P.; Kattenhorn, S. A.; Ebinger, C. J.; Kianji, G.; Maqway, M. D.; Thomas, N.; Onguso, B.

    2014-12-01

    The mechanisms controlling the migration of mantle-derived, CO­2-rich fluids in early-stage continental rifts are poorly constrained, yet have important implications for processes occurring during the initiation of continental breakup. Within the East African Rift specifically, the role of normal fault structures in transporting fluids, and the role these fluids play in driving deformation, is yet to be addressed. The 7 Ma Magadi Basin of the EAR exhibits active hydrothermal fluid flow amongst an excellently exposed array of normal faults, providing a unique opportunity to test the mechanics of fault-controlled fluid migration at an early-stage continental rift setting. We present a study utilizing both geochemical and structural data collected from active and fossilized fluid systems observed along faults in the Magadi Basin. The distribution and orientation of veins and systematic fracture sets around fault zones were recorded in the field, and fault throws were measured using a Trimble GPS. Larger faults were analyzed remotely using aerial imagery and the Aster GDEM v.2. Fault data were then compared with CO2 flux measured on soil and from gas-emitting fractures in and around fault zones using an accumulation chamber. Our data reveal that CO2-rich fluids travel along fault-parallel fractures within fault zones, and fault-oblique fracture sets in the accommodation zones between fault segments. Fluids rising through faults may additionally be diverted along lithologic boundaries in fault grabens, such as the contact between lavas and overlying sedimentary fill. The highest CO2 flux observed in the Magadi region occurs in the central axis of the rift, along faults with the highest observable throws (>150 m) as well as the 1998 earthquake rupture. This study illustrates a direct link between fluid flow and faulting during the earliest stages of continental rifting. High CO2 soil flux and active hydrothermal fluid flow is, therefore, a potential indicator of faults

  2. A Late Cretaceous Orogen Triggering the Tertiary Rifting of the West Sunda Plate; Andaman Sea Region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sautter, B.; Pubellier, M. F.; Menier, D.

    2015-12-01

    Rifted Basins often develop in internal zones of orogenic belts, although the latter may not be easy to unravel. We chose the example of the super-stretched Andaman sea region affected by several stages of rifting in the internal zone of a composite collage of allochthonous terranes. We made use of a set of geophysical, geochronological and structural data to analyze the rifting evolution and reconstruct the previous compressional structures. - Starting in the late Oligocene the East Andaman Basin opened as a back arc in a right-lateral pull- apart. The rifting propagated Westward to the central Andaman basin in the Middle Miocene, and to the oceanic spreading stage in the Pliocene. - An early extension occurred in the Paleogene, marked by widespread opening of isolated continental basins onshore Malay Peninsula and offshore Andaman Shelf and Malacca Straits. The rifting was accommodated by LANF's along preexisting weakness zones such as hinges of folds and granitic batholiths. Continuous extension connected the isolated basins offshore, whereas onshore, the grabens remained confined. There, AFT data show an uplift phase around 30Ma. In the Late Cretaceous, a major deformation occurred oblique to the pre-existing Indosinian basement fabrics. The convergence was partitioned into thrusting and uplift of the Cretaceous volcanic arc in Thailand and Myanmar, inversion of Mesozoic basins, and coeval wrenching responsible for large phacoid-shaped crustal slivers bounded by wide strike slip fault zones. The slivers share similar characteristics: a thick continental core of lower Paleozoic sedimentary basins units surrounded by Late Cretaceous granitoids. Radiometric data and fission tracks indicate a widespread thermal anomaly in all West Sunda Plate synchronous to a strong uplift. In the Latest Mesozoic, the Western Margin of Sunda plate was subjected to a major E-W compression, accommodated by oblique conjugate strike slip faults, leading to the formation of a large

  3. Rainfall and epizootic Rift Valley fever*

    PubMed Central

    Davies, F. G.; Linthicum, K. J.; James, A. D.

    1985-01-01

    Epizootic Rift Valley fever (RVF) has occurred in Kenya four times over the last 30 years. Widespread, frequent, and persistent rainfall has been a feature of these epizootic periods. A composite statistic, based upon measurements of these rainfall characteristics, is positive during periods of epizootic Rift Valley fever. The heavy rainfall raises the level of the water table in certain areas, flooding the grassland depressions (dambos) that are the habitat of the immature forms of certain ground-pool-breeding mosquitos of the genus Aedes. RVF virus is probably transmitted transovarially in these species, very large numbers of which emerge under these damp conditions. This is when clinical signs of the disease are first seen. PMID:3879206

  4. The North Polar Spur and Aquila Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sofue, Yoshiaki

    2015-03-01

    Soft X-ray intensity at 0.89 keV along the North Polar Spur (NPS) is shown to follow the extinction law due to the interstellar gas in the Aquila Rift by analysing the ROSAT archival data, which proves that the NPS is located behind the rift. The Aquila-Serpens molecular clouds, where the X-ray optical depth exceeds unity, are shown to have a mean LSR velocity of v = 7.33 ± 1.94 km s-1, corresponding to a kinematic distance of r = 0.642 ± 0.174 kpc. Assuming a shell structure, a lower limit of the distance to NPS is derived to be 1.01 ± 0.25 kpc, with the shell centre being located farther than 1.1 kpc. Based on the distance estimation, we argue that the NPS is a Galactic halo object.

  5. Which mantle below the active rift segments in Afar?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pik, Raphael; Stab, Martin; Ancellin, Marie-Anne; Sarah, Medynski; Cloquet, Christophe; Vye-Brown, Charlotte; Ayalew, Dereje; Chazot, Gilles; Bellahsen, Nicolas; Leroy, Sylvie

    2014-05-01

    The evolution of mantle sources beneath the Ethiopian volcanic province has long been discussed and debated with a long-lived controversy in identifying mantle reservoirs and locating them in the mantle. One interpretation of the isotopic composition of erupted lavas considers that the Afar mantle plume composition is best expressed by recent lavas from Afar and Gulf of Aden (e.g. Erta Ale, Manda Inakir and the 45°E torus anomaly on the Gulf of Aden) implying that all other volcanics (including other active segments and the initial flood basalt province) result from mixing of this plume component with additional lithospheric and asthenospheric components. A completely opposite view considers that the initial Oligocene continental flood basalts best represent the isotopic composition of the Afar mantle plume, which is subsequently mixed in various proportions with continental lithospheric mantle for generating some of the specific signature of Miocene and Quaternary volcanics. The precise and correct identification of mantle components involved in the generation of magmas is of particular importance because this is the only way to document the participation of mantle during extension and its potential role in break-up processes. In this contribution we provide new isotopic data for central Afar and we revisit the whole data set of the Ethiopian volcanic province in order to: (i) precisely identify the distinct mantle components implicated and (ii) discuss their location and evolution not only considering geochemical mixings, but also taking into account additional characteristics of erupted magmatic suites (volumes, location and relationships with amount of extension and segmentation). This new interpretation of geochemical data allows reconsidering the evolution of mantle in the course of rift evolution. In terms of mantle sources, two populations of active segments are frontally opposed in the volcanic province: those that share exactly the same composition with

  6. Proterozoic Midcontinent Rift System, an overview

    SciTech Connect

    Kerr, S.D.; Landon, S.M.

    1992-01-01

    The Middle and Late Proterozoic Midcontinent Rift System (MRS) extends across the middle US, from Lake Superior through Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa and Nebraska into Kansas on the southwest limb and across upper and lower Michigan on the southeast limb. Exploration for oil and gas generated over 7,000 miles of seismic, a leasehold of near seven million acres, but only three test wells. The initial extension of the MRS was marked by filling with layered basalt. Thickness documented by GLIMPCE suggests crustal separation was nearly achieved. The thick dense basalts and thinned pre-rift crust provide high amplitude gravity anomalies which characterize the rift trend. Extension slowed and eventually ceased, creating a sag phase during which clastic sediments were deposited, including sapropelic shale and siltstone, fluvial sandstones and siltstones, and fluvial/alluvial conglomerates. Tectonic inversion to compressional and transpressional forces occurred late in rift history, possibly during part of the period of clastic fill. The MRS trend is highly segmented, with varied tectonic styles, suggesting complex stress systems in its development. The Nonesuch Formation is marine or lacustrine siltstone and shale containing sufficient organic matter to be an effective source rock for oil and gas. Similar facies have been identified along the extent of the western limb, in the subsurface in Minnesota, Iowa and Kansas. TOC values are as high as 3% and maturity ranges from peak oil to advanced. Surface seeps, fluid inclusions, mud log shows and modeling indicate the potential for multiple episodes of generation. Potential reservoir rocks have been identified and seals are present as lacustrine and fluvial shales and possible evaporites. The MRS remains a relatively unexplored frontier hydrocarbon province with giant field potential in the heart of North America.

  7. Seismotectonics of Reelfoot rift basement structures

    SciTech Connect

    Dart, R.L.; Swolfs, H.S. )

    1993-03-01

    Contour maps of the Precambrian basement surface show major northwest-trending structural features within the boundaries of the northeast-oriented Reelfoot rift. These northwest-trending features, southeast of New Madrid, Missouri, consist of a trough flanked on the northeast by a 2-km-high ridge. These features correlate with similar features on an updated depth-to-magnetic basement map. The boundary between the trough and the ridge slopes gently to the southwest. The upward projection of this boundary into the overlying Paleozoic strata may be expressed on a structure-contour map of the Cambrian rocks. The vertical relief of this boundary on the younger datum is inferred to be about 1 km. This Precambrian trough-ridge structure may correlate with a southwest dipping, west-northwest-striking normal fault inferred by Schwalb (1982) to offset rocks of the Cambrian-Ordovician Knox Megagroup that subcrop at the Paleozoic surface. Schwalb (1982) inferred 1.22 km of vertical relief on this fault near the bootheel of Missouri. The nature and significance of this tectonic-structural boundary is unclear, but at the top of the Precambrian basement rocks, it coincides with the southwestern terminus of the New Madrid seismic zone (NMSZ) near the end of the Blytheville arch in northeastern Arkansas. Since the mid-1970's, when instrumental recording began, some of the earthquakes in the NMSZ having the largest magnitudes occurred in this area. The authors working hypothesis is that this trough-ridge structural boundary may concentrate stress and/or may be a barrier that defines the southwestern limit of the seismically active axial fault zone in the rift. Future study will concentrate on improving the understanding of the influence of rift-bounding faults on the lateral extent of this structure, as well as constructing a tectonic stress model of seismically active rift faults and this trough-ridge structure.

  8. the role of magmatism and segmentation in the structural evolution of the Afar Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stab, Martin; Bellahsen, Nicolas; Pik, Raphaël; Quidelleur, Xavier; Ayalew, Dereje; Leroy, Sylvie

    2015-04-01

    A common issue at volcanic passive margins (VPM) is the lack of observation of the structures that accommodate stretching and thinning. Indeed, the most distal parts and the Ocean-Continent Transition is often masked by thick seaward-dipping reflectors (SDR) sequences. Some current challenges are then to know if the observed thinning fit the divergence (thinning vs dyking); and what is the rheological effect of magma supply that re-thickens the crust during extension? In the Central Afar magmatic rift (Ethiopia), the structures related to rifting since Oligocene are cropping out onshore and are well preserved. We present here a new structural model based on field data and lavas (U-Th/He and K/Ar) datings along a balanced cross-section of the Central Afar Western Margin. We mapped continent-ward normal fault array affecting highly tilted trapp series (29-30 Ma) unconformably overlain by tilted Oligo-Miocene (25-7 Ma) acid series. The main extensional and necking/thinning event took place during the end of this Miocene magmatic episode. The Pliocene flood basalt (Stratoid series) is erupted over an already thinned crust. The bulk extension for the Afar Western Margin is ß ~ 2.50. Our main findings are: - Oligo-Miocene deformation in Central Afar appears to be largely distributed through space and time ("magmatic wide rift"). It has been accommodated in a 200-300 km wide strip being a diffuse incipient plate boundary during the whole rifting history until the formation of present-day magmatic segments. There is a period of tectonic quiescence accompanied with few magma erupted at the surface between 25 Ma and 7 Ma. We suggest that tectonic and magmatic activity was focused at that time on the highly faulted Danakil block and Southern Red Sea, away from our study zone. - ß ~ 2.50 is higher than the thinning factor of ~1.30 observed in geophysical studies. We propose that the continental crust in Central Afar has been re-thickened during extension by the syn-rift

  9. Westward drift, rift asymmetry and continental uplift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doglioni, C.; Carminati, E.; Bonatti, E.

    2003-04-01

    Although not predicted by classic plate tectonics theory, the topography of ocean ridges and rifts show a distinct asymmetry, when depth is plotted both vs. distance from the ridge and square root of the age of the oceanic crust. The eastern sides of the East Pacific Rise, of the mid Atlantic ridge, of the NW Indian ridge are in average more elevated than the conjugate flank to the west and eastern sides show slower subsidence rates. A similar asymmetry can be observed across the Red Sea and Baikal rifts. We suggest that depleted and lighter asthenosphere generated by partial melting below the ocean ridges shifts 'eastward' relative to the lithosphere, determining a density deficit below the eastern flank. The 'eastward' migration of the lighter Atlantic asthenosphere under the African continent, could eventually have contributed to the anomalous post-rift uplift of Africa and explain the anomalously higher topography of Africa with respect to other continents. This model suggests that the 'westward' drift of the lithosphere relative to the underlying mantle might be a global phenomenon and not just a mean delay.

  10. Structural control of the Limagne Rift Fault on the Chaîne des Puys

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Van Wyk de Vries, B.; Tiu, G.; Mossoux, S.; Kervyn, M.; Lagmay, A. A.

    2012-12-01

    The close proximity of the Limagne Fault to the Chaîne des Puys (Massif Central, France) has been noted for a long time. In fact, if the Limagne fault had not raised the Chaîne relative to the Limagne Rift, to create a spectacular skyline of volcanoes, there would probably not have been so much interest in them. Early geologists such as Elie de Beaumont, Davy, Lyell, Murchison, and Von Humbolt, were as much concerned with explaining the escarpment by catastrophism or uniformitarianism, as they were with battling over neptunism and plutonism, or craters of elevation. The questions still stands as to what relationship the monogenetic volcanoes have to the fault, and perhaps: are the volcanoes monogenetic because of the fault? - seeing as just to the south of the rift, stand the Mont Dore-Sancy and Cantal stratovolcanoes. Considering the spatial-temporal relationship, it becomes clear that there are volcanoes on the fault, in the rift, and behind the footwall, but with different ages and configurations. Early volcanoes are cut by the faulting, showing a potential linkage, later volcanoes, as a whole, follow generally the main structural trend NS of the rift, but in detail group around a more NE-SW trend, that can be related to Hercynian structures, and to a major transfer fault linking the Limagne Rift to the Rhine Graben. These trends host some of the youngest volcanoes, and the fault appears to have been more recently active in this area, and the area of some damaging historic earthquakes. Considering the proximity of the fault as an influence in the monogenetic nature of the volcanism, more needs to be known about the state of faulting in the Tertiary in the Massif Central. However, the area of the Chaîne de Puys is highly heterogeneous, with complex associations of Hercynian and Tertiary structures, and thus the crustal structure may be compatible with multiple pathways, and thus a monogenetic tendency. In conclusion, there is a probably spatial and temporal

  11. Sismotectonics in the western branch of the East African Rift System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Delvaux, Damien; Kervyn, François; Mulumba, Jean-Luc; Kipata, Louis; Sebagenzi, Stanislas; Mavonga, Georges; Macheyeki, Athanas; Temu, Elly Bryan

    2013-04-01

    The western branch of the East African rift system is known of its particular seismic activity with larger magnitude (up to Ms 7.3) and more frequent destructive earthquakes than in the eastern branch. As a contribution to the IGCP 601 project Seismotectonic Map of Africa, we compiled the known active faults, thermal springs and historical seismicity in Central Africa. Using the rich archives of the Royal Museum for Central Africa, publications and own field observations, we present a compilation of available data relative to the current seismotectonic activity along the western branch of the East African rift system, in DRC, Rwanda, Burundi and Tanzania. Neotectonic activity related to the western rift branch is in general well expressed and relatively well studied in the eastern flank of this rift branch, in Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi and Tanzania. In contrast, the western flank of this rift branch, largely exposed in the DRC, has attracted less attention. However, data collected during the colonial times show significant sismotectonic activity in East DRC, not only in the western flank of the western rift branch, but extending far westwards up to the margin of the Congo basin. In particular, our predecessors paid a special attention to the mapping and description of thermal springs, noticing that they are often controlled by active faults. In addition, the operators of the relatively dense network of meteorological stations installed in the DRC, Rwanda and Burundi also recorded were with variable level of completeness and detail the earthquakes that they could felt. This provides a rich database that is used to complete the existing knowledge on historical seismicity. An important effort has still to be paid to identify and map potentially active fault due to poor field accessibility, tropical climate weathering and vegetation coverage. The main problem in the compilation of active fault data is that very few of them have been investigated by paleoseismic trenching

  12. Development of the Barents Sea rift and its influence on sedimentation and hydrocarbon formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balanyuk, Inna; Dmitrievsky, Anatoly; Shapovalov, Sergey; Chaikina, Olga

    2010-05-01

    to the greatest deposits of this depression. An extended field acoustic data collected in the Barents Sea led to understanding of general fundamental problems for all Arctic Seas and, first of all, the problem of Quaternary glaciations. An analysis of Eurasian-Arctic continental margin shows correspondence between the rift systems of the shelf with those of the ocean. This relation can be observed by an example of the central Arctic region. All the rift systems underlying the sediment basin are expressed in the sea bed relief as spacious and extensive graben valleys burnished by lobes. The rift structures and the sediment cover are connected by the systems of transversal (or oblique) faults. A study of the regional geologic structure of basins affords believing in the very complicated inner riftogenic structure of the base and the lower part of the sediment cover, which is represented by a combination of grabens and horsts bound by the same tectonic border in the form of high amplitude fault zones, and have a very high density of fault-fractured tectonics. In the same time, a branching of the rift structures related to rounding of large solid blocks of the crust, represented by Archaean or Baikal base prominences, takes place. Their frequent structural connection with the continental paleo-rift structures is ascertained, but the shelf rift system are not their straight prolongation and separated by base thresholds concealed under the sediment cover or by bulkheads expressed even in the modern relief. The information on geodynamic development of the region, thermal convection and modern sedimentation enable assessment of the real potentiality for underwater works in the region, potential gas hydrates resources, and will help to assign a strategy of prospecting work, to range the known fields, to carry out a regional survey for engineering work.

  13. Anomalous deep earthquakes beneath the East African Rift: evidence for rift induced delamination of the lithosphere?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lindenfeld, Michael; Rümpker, Georg; Schmeling, Harro; Wallner, Herbert

    2010-05-01

    The over 5000 m high Rwenzori Mountains are situated within the western branch of the East African Rift System, at the border between Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. They represent a basement block within the rift valley whose origin and relation to the evolution of the EARS are highly puzzling. During 2006/2007 a network of 27 seismological stations was operated in this area to investigate crustal and upper mantle structure in conjunction with local seismicity. The data analysis revealed unexpectedly high microseismic activity. On average more than 800 events per month could be located with magnitudes ranging from 0.5 to 5.1. Hypocentral depths go as deep as 30 km with a pronounced concentration of activity at a depth of about 15 km. This presentation focuses on a cluster of seven earthquakes that were located at anomalous depths between 53 and 60 km. According to our present knowledge these are the deepest events so far observed within the EARS and the African Plate. Their origin might be connected to magmatic intrusions. However, the existence of earthquakes at this depth is enigmatic, especially within a rifting regime were one expects hot and weak material close to the surface, which is not capable of seismogenic deformation. We think that these events are closely related to the evolution of the Rwenzoris. A recent hypothesis to explain the extreme uplift of the Rwenzori Mountains is rift induced delamination (RID) of mantle lithosphere that is captured between two approaching rift segments. By numerical modelling we show that the RID-process is also able to bring material that is cold and brittle enough to release seismic energy into greater depth. Therefore the RID-mechanism gives a consistent explanation for the detected deep events as well as for the uplift of a mountain block in a rift setting.

  14. Kīlauea's Upper East Rift Zone: A Rift Zone in Name Only

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Swanson, D. A.; Fiske, R. S.

    2014-12-01

    Kīlauea's upper east rift zone (UERZ) extends ~3 km southeastward from the summit caldera to the Koáe fault system, where it starts to bend into the main part of the ENE-trending rift zone. The UERZ lacks a distinct positive gravity anomaly (though coverage is poor) and any evidence of deformation associated with magma intrusion. All ground ruptures—and the Puhimau thermal area—trend ENE, crossing the UERZ at a high angle. Lua Manu, Puhimau, and Kóokóolau craters are the only surface evidence of the UERZ. Yet the UERZ is seismically active, and all magma entering the rest of the rift zone must pass through it. Rather than a rift zone in the traditional sense, with abundant dikes and ground ruptures along its trend, the UERZ cuts across the ENE structural grain and serves only as a connector to the rest of the rift zone, not a locus of dike formation along its length. The UERZ probably developed as a consequence of gradual SSE migration of the active part of the main east rift zone at the trailing edge of the south flank. During migration, a connection to the summit reservoir complex must be maintained; otherwise, the middle and lower east rift zone would starve and magma from Kīlauea's summit reservoir complex would have to go elsewhere. Over time, the UERZ lengthened and rotated clockwise to maintain the connection. Near the caldera, the UERZ may be widening westward as the summit reservoir complex migrates southward from the center of the caldera to its present position. A layered stress regime results in the upper 2-3 km mimicking the pervasive ENE structural grain of most of Kīlauea, whereas the underlying magmatic part of the UERZ responds to stresses related to SE magma transport. Magma intruding upward from the connector forms a dike that follows the ENE structural grain, as during the 1974 eruption. The active east rift zone has been migrating since ~100 ka, estimated by applying a 700-y extension rate across the Koa'e fault system to the ~6.5 km

  15. Geodetic measurements and numerical models of rifting in Northern Iceland for 1993-2008

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ali, S. T.; Feigl, K. L.; Carr, B. B.; Masterlark, T.; Sigmundsson, F.

    2014-03-01

    Rifting occurs as episodes of active deformation in individual rift segments of the Northern Volcanic Zone (NVZ) in Iceland. Here, we simulate deformation around the Krafla central volcano and rift system in the NVZ using a 3-D numerical model in order to explain synthetic aperture radar data acquired by the ERS and Envisat satellite missions between 1993 and 2008. The deformation is non-linear in time over the observed interval. The observed deformation can be explained by a combination of three processes, including: (i) secular plate spreading between the North American and Eurasian plates at a rate of 18.2 mm yr-1, (ii) viscoelastic relaxation following the Krafla Fires rifting episode between 1975 and 1984 and (iii) inflation/deflation of shallow magma chambers beneath the Theistareykir and Krafla central volcanoes. We minimize the misfit between the observed and modelled values of the range change gradient, averaged over all samples, using a simulated annealing algorithm that uses a first-order Taylor series to approximate the fitting function. The calibration parameters include the locking depth of the plate boundary and the rheological properties of the lower crust and mantle. The 68-per cent confidence intervals for the parameters in the solution that best fits the data are: (i) a locking depth of 8.0 to 9.5 km, (ii) a viscosity of 19 to 49 EPa.s (1 EPa.s =1018 Pa.s) in the lower crust at depths between 8 and 24 km and (iii) a viscosity of 5 to 9 EPa.s in the upper mantle below 24 km.

  16. The role of fluids in lower-crustal earthquakes near continental rifts.

    PubMed

    Reyners, Martin; Eberhart-Phillips, Donna; Stuart, Graham

    2007-04-26

    The occurrence of earthquakes in the lower crust near continental rifts has long been puzzling, as the lower crust is generally thought to be too hot for brittle failure to occur. Such anomalous events have usually been explained in terms of the lower crust being cooler than normal. But if the lower crust is indeed cold enough to produce earthquakes, then the uppermost mantle beneath it should also be cold enough, and yet uppermost mantle earthquakes are not observed. Numerous lower-crustal earthquakes occur near the southwestern termination of the Taupo Volcanic Zone (TVZ), an active continental rift in New Zealand. Here we present three-dimensional tomographic imaging of seismic velocities and seismic attenuation in this region using data from a dense seismograph deployment. We find that crustal earthquakes accurately relocated with our three-dimensional seismic velocity model form a continuous band along the rift, deepening from mostly less than 10 km in the central TVZ to depths of 30-40 km in the lower crust, 30 km southwest of the termination of the volcanic zone. These earthquakes often occur in swarms, suggesting fluid movement in critically loaded fault zones. Seismic velocities within the band are also consistent with the presence of fluids, and the deepening seismicity parallels the boundary between high seismic attenuation (interpreted as partial melt) within the central TVZ and low seismic attenuation in the crust to the southwest. This linking of upper and lower-crustal seismicity and crustal structure allows us to propose a common explanation for all the seismicity, involving the weakening of faults on the periphery of an otherwise dry, mafic crust by hot fluids, including those exsolved from underlying melt. Such fluids may generally be an important driver of lower-crustal seismicity near continental rifts. PMID:17460671

  17. Pre-breakup geology of the Gulf of Mexico-Caribbean: Its relation to Triassic and Jurassic rift systems of the region

    SciTech Connect

    Bartok, P. )

    1993-02-01

    A review of the pre-breakup geology of west-central Pangea, comprised of northern South America, Gulf of Mexico and West Africa, combined with a study of the Mesozoic rift trends of the region confirms a relation between the rift systems and the underlying older grain of deformation. The pre-breakup analysis focuses attention on the Precambrian, Early Paleozoic and Late Paleozoic tectonic events affecting the region and assumes a Pindell fit. Two Late Precambrian orogenic belts are observed in the west central Pangea. Along the northern South American margin and Yucatan a paleo northeast trending Pan-African aged fold belt is documented. A second system is observed along West Africa extending from the High Atlas to the Mauritanides and Rockelides. During the Late Paleozoic, renewed orogenic activity, associated with the Gondwana/Laurentia suture, affected large segments of west central Pangea. The general trend of the system is northeast-southwest and essentially parallels the Gyayana Shield, West African, and eastern North American cratons. Mesozoic rifting closely followed either the Precambrian trends or the Late Paleozoic orogenic belt. The Triassic component focuses along the western portions of the Gulf of Mexico continuing into eastern Mexico and western South America. The Jurassic rift trend followed along the separation between Yucatan and northern South America. At Lake Maracaibo the Jurassic rift system eventually overlaps the Triassic rifts. The Jurassic rift resulted in the [open quotes]Hispanic Corridor[close quotes] that permitted Tethyan and Pacific marine faunas to mix at a time when the Gulf of Mexico underwent continental sedimentation.

  18. Post-rift tectonic reactivation and its effect on deep-water deposits in the Qiongdongnan Basin, northwestern South China Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mao, Kainan; Xie, Xinong; Xie, Yuhong; Ren, Jianye; Chen, Hui

    2015-09-01

    The post-rift evolution of extensional basins is traditionally thought to be dominated by thermal subsidence due to cessation of the major fault activity during the post-rift stage. The Qiongdongnan Basin, which is located in the northwestern continental margins of the South China Sea, has exhibited significant deviations from typical post-rift characteristics. In the basin, a distinct tectonic reactivation occurred since the Late Miocene (11.6 Ma). Three notable aspects of the observed tectonic reactivation during the post-rift stage include, (1) pre-existing fault reactivation, (2) multiple large-scale magmatic intrusions, and (3) rapid post-rift subsidence. During this period the basin infill significantly changed in depositional environments shifting rapidly from littoral-neritic to bathyal-abyssal environments since Late Miocene. The pre-existing fault activity along the No. 2 fault of the basin resulted in the formation of initial shelf breaks and led to the development of continental slope. In addition, the pre-existing faults along the Central Depression zone created a small sub-basin with distinctive axial negative topography characteristics formed between structural highs. These geomorphological changes led to the formation of the Central Canyon. Large-scale magmatic intrusions occurred along the fault zone in the Central Depression of the basin during the post-rift stage. Those deviations, as evidenced from pre-existing fault reactivation, magmatic intrusions, and rapid post-rift subsidence in the Qiongdongnan Basin is believed to be related to the Hainan Plume event.

  19. How Is Lower Crust Modified As A Neo-Rift Becomes A Paleo-Rift and Part Of The Craton?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gilbert, M. C.

    2004-12-01

    The Southern Oklahoma Aulacogen (SOA), at the southern end of Laurentia (present coordinates), if behaving as neo-rifts, such as the Rio Grande Rift, presumably possessed a rift structure in the Cambrian with a continental thickness of about 28km. Seismic data, though sparse, suggest a present thickness of the SOA is about 45km, indistinguishable from adjacent rifted Proterozoic crust. By what process do we add 15km to the original SOA crust: underplating, eclogite-gabbro transformation, or deformation? This question has bearing on how we understand and interpret all paleo-rifts now a part of continental cores. Geology of the southern Midcontinent of North America does not show evidence of significant thermal events in the Phanerozoic. This effectively rules out underplating and phase transformation as a cause of change in M-discontinuity depth. Present SOA outcrops are in the Wichita Mountains of southwestern Oklahoma, part of the easternmost Ancestral Rockies. These outcrops are in the Wichita-Amarillo crustal block uplifted about 7km in the Pennsylvanian. The Anadarko Basin to the north went down about 7km. Large Pennsylvanian thrust faults in the upper brittle crust are documented. Thus it appears that compressive deformation may be able to account for the change in crustal thickness from neo-rift type to paleo-rift and craton type. However, the accommodation made in the lower crust may be more dramatic than deformation in the upper crust because shortening, and thickening of the order of 2X, is probably required. Comparisons with other paleo-rifts in North America, such as the Middle Proterozoic Midcontinent Rift and the NeoProterozoic Reelfoot Rift, show that their crustal thicknesses now also match their previously rifted margins. Can the same sequence, as seems to be the case with the SOA, apply to other paleo-rifts?

  20. Rifting and breakup in the South China Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Franke, Dieter; Savva, Dimitri; Pubellier, Manuel; Steuer, Stephan; Mouly, Benoit; Auxietre, Jean-Luc; Meresse, Florian; Chamot-Rooke, Nicolas

    2014-05-01

    The magma-poor or intermediate magmatic South China Sea is a natural laboratory for studying rifting and breakup. The basin shows an irregular triangular shape with a SW pointing apex, which manifests a preceding propagating rift. The earliest phase of rifting started in the Early Paleocene when a Mesozoic convergent margin changed to extension. After about 30 Million years of rifting, breakup in the major eastern subbasin of the SCS occurred in the Early Oligocene but rifting continued and subsequent breakup of the southwest subbasin took place in the Late Oligocene. The wide Early Cenozoic South China Sea rift preserves the initial rift architecture at the distal margins. Seismic reflection data imaging conjugate crustal sections at the South China Sea margins result in a conceptual model for rift-evolution at conjugate magma-poor margins in time and space. Most distinct are regular undulations in the crust-mantle boundary. Individual rift basins are bounded to crustal blocks by listric normal faults on either side. Moho uplifts are distinct beneath major rift basins, while the Moho is downbended beneath crustal blocks, with a wavelength of undulations in the crust-mantle boundary that approximately equals the thickness of the continental crust. Most of the basin-bounding faults sole out within the middle crust. At the distal margins, detachment faults are located at a mid-crustal level where a weak zone decouples crust and mantle lithosphere during rifting. The lower crust in contrast is interpreted as being strong. Only in the region within about 50 km from the continent-ocean transition (COT) we suggest that normal faults reach the mantle, enabling potentially a coupling between the crust and the mantle. Here, at the proximal margins detachment fault dip either seaward or landward. This may indicate the presence of exhumed mantle bordering the continental margins. Post-rift shallow-water platform carbonates indicate a delay in subsidence during rifting in the

  1. Structure and kinematics of the Taupo Rift, New Zealand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seebeck, Hannu; Nicol, Andrew; Villamor, Pilar; Ristau, John; Pettinga, Jarg

    2014-06-01

    The structure and kinematics of the continental intra-arc Taupo Rift have been constrained by fault-trace mapping, a large catalogue of focal mechanisms (N = 202) and fault slip striations. The mean extension direction of ~137° is approximately orthogonal to the regional trend of the rift and arc front (α = 84° and 79°, respectively) and to the strike of the underlying subducting Pacific Plate. Bending and rollback of the subduction hinge strongly influence the location, orientation, and extension direction of intra-arc rifting in the North Island. In detail, orthogonal rifting (α = 85-90°) transitions northward to oblique rifting (α = 69-71°) across a paleovertical-axis rotation boundary where rift faults, extension directions, and basement fabric rotate by ~20-25°. Toward the south, extension is orthogonal to normal faults which are parallel to, and reactivate, steeply dipping basement fabric. Basement reactivation facilitates strain partitioning with a portion of margin-parallel motion in the overriding plate mainly accommodated east of the rift by strike-slip faults in the North Island Fault System (NIFS). Toward the north where the rift and NIFS intersect, ~4 mm/yr strike slip is transferred into the rift with net oblique extension accommodating a component of margin-parallel motion. The trend and kinematics of the Taupo Rift are comparable to late Miocene-Pliocene intra-arc rifting in the Taranaki Basin, indicating that the northeast strike of the subducting plate and the southeast extension direction have been uniform since at least 4 Ma.

  2. GLIMPCE Seismic reflection evidence of deep-crustal and upper-mantle intrusions and magmatic underplating associated with the Midcontinent Rift system of North America

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Behrendt, John C.; Hutchinson, D.R.; Lee, M.; Thornber, C.R.; Trehu, A.; Cannon, W.; Green, A.

    1990-01-01

    Deep-crustal and Moho reflections, recorded on vertical incidence and wide angle ocean bottom Seismometer (OBS) data in the 1986 GLIMPCE (Great Lakes International Multidisciplinary Program on Crustal Evolution) experiment, provide evidence for magmatic underplating and intrusions within the lower crust and upper mantle contemporaneous with crustal extension in the Midcontinent Rift system at 1100 Ma. The rift fill consists of 20-30 km (7-10 s) of basalt flows, secondary syn-rift volcaniclastic and post-basalt sedimentary rock. Moho reflections recorded in Lake Superior over the Midcontinent Rift system have times from 14-18 s (about 46 km to as great as 58 km) in contrast to times of about 11-13 s (about 36-42 km crustal thickness) beneath the surrounding Great Lakes. The Seismically complex deep-crust to mantle transition zone (30-60 km) in north-central Lake Superior, which is 100 km wider than the rift half-graben, reflects the complicated products of tectonic and magmatic interaction of lower-crustal and mantle components during evolution or shutdown of the aborted Midcontinent Rift. In effect, mantle was changed into crust by lowering Seismic velocity (through intrusion of lower density magmatic rocks) and increasing Moho (about 8.1 km s-1 depth. ?? 1990.

  3. Phanerozoic Rifting Phases And Mineral Deposits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hassaan, Mahmoud

    2016-04-01

    In North Africa occur Mediterranean and Red Sea metallogenic provinces. In each province distribute 47 iron- manganese- barite and lead-zinc deposits with tectonic-structural control. The author presents in this paper aspects of position of these deposits in the two provinces with Phanerozoic rifting . The Mediterranean Province belongs to two epochs, Hercynian and Alpine. The Hercynian Epoch manganese deposits in only Moroccoa- Algeria belong to Paleozoic tectonic zones and Proterozoic volcanics. The Alpine Epoch iron-manganese deposits are of post-orogenic exhalative-sedimentary origin. Manganese deposits in southern Morocco occur in Kabil-Rief quartz-chalcedony veins controlled by faults in andesitic sheets and in bedded pelitic tuffs, strata-form lenses and ore veins, in Precambrian schist and in Triassic and Cretaceous dolomites. Disseminated manganese with quartz and barite and effusive hydrothermal veins are hosted in Paleocene volcanics. Manganese deposits in Algeria are limited and unrecorded in Tunisia. Strata-form iron deposits in Atlas Heights are widespread in sub-rift zone among Jurassic sediments inter-bedding volcanic rocks. In Algeria, Group Beni-Saf iron deposits are localized along the Mediterranean coast in terrigenous and carbonate rocks of Jurassic, Cretaceous and Eocene age within faults and bedding planes. In Morocco strata-form hydrothermal lead-zinc deposits occur in contact zone of Tertiary andesite inter-bedding Cambrian shale, Lias dolomites and Eocene andesite. In both Algeria and Tunisia metasomatic Pb-Zn veins occur in Campanian - Maastrichtian carbonates, Triassic breccia, Jurassic limestone, Paleocene sandstones and limestone and Neogene conglomerates and sandstones. The Red Sea metallogenic province belongs to the Late Tertiary-Miocene times. In Wadi Araba hydrothermal iron-manganese deposits occur in Cretaceous sediments within 320°and 310 NW faults related to Tertiary basalt. Um-Bogma iron-manganese deposits are closely

  4. Understanding the Transition From Continental to Oceanic Rifting in the Northern Ethiopian Rift - the EAGLE Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stuart, G.

    2003-12-01

    A consortium of UK (Leeds, Leicester, Royal Holloway, Edinburgh,), US (Stanford, UTEP, Penn State,) and Ethiopian (Addis Ababa) universities are exploring the kinematics and dynamics of continental breakup through the Ethiopia Afar Geoscientific Lithospheric Experiment (EAGLE), which aims to probe the crust and upper mantle structure between the Main Ethiopian (continental) and Afar (ocean spreading) rifts. EAGLE is a multi-disciplinary study centered around a set of passive and controlled-source seismic experiments, and incorporates additional magnetotelluric, gravity, GPS and petrological studies. The initial Phase I seismic experiment consisted of a deployment of 30 broadband seismometers for a period of 16 months (Oct. 2001 to Jan. 2003) over a 250 km x 250 km area of the rift valley and its uplifted flanks. P- and S-wave tompography from teleseismic traveltime residuals, SKS splitting analyses and receiver functions provide images of crust and deep earth structure. The Phase II seismic experiment consisted of a further 50 broadband instruments for a period of 4 months over a 200 km x 100 km area encompassing 4 magmatic segments in the Main Ethiopian Rift. These recordings have furthered our understanding of the location of active seismicity, fault plane mechanisms and segmentation of rift crustal structure. Phase III consisted of the deployment of a further 1100 seismic instruments during a controlled source seismic project involving 20 shots being fired into one 450 km cross-rift profile (Profile 1), one 450 km axial profile (Profile 2), and a dense 2D array of instruments in a 150 km diameter circle around the profiles1 intersection (Profile 3), all centered on the magmatically active Nazret region. The crust and upper mantle velocity models derived provide estimates of total crustal thinning across the rift, assess the role of basement in the location of major faults and magmatic segments, and determine whether significant underplating takes place. An 18

  5. Complex seismicity patterns in the Rwenzori region: insights to rifting processes at the Albertine Rift.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lindenfeld, M.; Rümpker, G.; Wölbern, I.; Batte, A. G.; Schumann, A.

    2012-04-01

    Numerous seismological studies in East Africa have focused on the northern and eastern branches of the East African Rift System (EARS). However, the seismic activity along the western branch is much more pronounced. Here, the Rwenzori Mountains are located within the Albertine rift valley, at the border between Uganda and D.R. Congo. During a seismic monitoring campaign between February 2006 and September 2007 we have recorded more than 800 earthquakes per month in the Rwenzori area. The earthquake distribution is highly heterogeneous. The majority of located events lie within faults zones to the East and West of the Rwenzoris with the highest seismic activity observed in the northeastern area, were the mountains are in contact with the rift shoulders. The hypocentral depth distribution peaks at 16 km depth and extends down to the Moho which was found at 20 - 32 km depths by teleseismic receiver functions. Local magnitudes range from -0.5 to 5.1 with a b-value of 1.1. Fault plane solutions of 304 events were derived from P-polarities and SV/P amplitude ratios. More than 70% of the source mechanisms exhibit normal faulting. T-axis trends are highly uniform and oriented WNW-ESE, which is perpendicular to the rift axis and in good agreement with kinematic rift models. The area of highest seismic activity NE of the Rwenzoris is characterized by the occurrence of several earthquake clusters in 5 -20 km depth. They have stable positions throughout time and form elongated pipes with 1-2 km diameter and vertical extensions of 3-5 km. From petrological considerations we presume that these earthquake swarms are triggered by fluids and gasses which originate from a magmatic source below the crust. The existence of a magmatic source within the lithosphere is supported by the detection of a shear-wave velocity reduction in 55-80 km depth from receiver-function analysis and the location of mantle earthquakes at about 60 km. We interpret these observations as indication for an

  6. Geophysical glimpses into the Ferrigno Rift at the northwestern tip of the West Antarctic Rift System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bingham, Robert; Ferraccioli, Fausto

    2014-05-01

    The West Antarctic Rift System (WARS) forms one of the largest continental rift systems on Earth. The WARS is of major significance as it forms the lithospheric cradle for the marine-based and potentially unstable West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS). Seismic refraction, reflection, aeromagnetic, gravity and drilling in the Ross Sea have revealed most of what we know about its structure, tectonic and magmatic patterns and sedimentary basins. Aerogeophysical research and passive seismic networks have considerably extended our knowledge of the WARS and its influence on the overlying WAIS in the Siple Coast and Amundsen Sea Embayment (ASE) regions. The Bellingshausen Sea Embayment region has however remained largely unexplored, and hence the possible extent of the WARS in this sector has remained poorly constrained. Here we use a combination of reconnaissance ground-based and airborne radar observations, airborne gravity, satellite gravity and aeromagnetic data to investigate the WARS in the Bellingshausen Sea Embayment, in the area of the Ferrigno Ice Stream (Bingham et al., 2012, Nature). This region is of high significance, as it one of the main sectors of the WAIS that is currently exhibiting rapid ice loss, thought to be driven primarily by oceanic warming. Assessing geological controls on subice topography and ice dynamics is therefore of prime importance in this part of the WAIS. Ground-based and airborne radar image a subglacial basin beneath the Ferrigno Ice Stream that is up to 1.5 kilometres deep and that connects the ice-sheet interior to the Bellingshausen Sea margin. We interpret this basin as a narrow, glacially overdeepened rift basin that formed at the northwestern tip of the WARS. Satellite gravity data cannot resolve such a narrow rift basin but indicate that the crust beneath the region is likely thinned, lending support to the hypothesis that this area is indeed part of the WARS. Widely-spaced aeromagnetic data image a linear low along the inferred

  7. Early-stage rifting in the southwest East African Rift: Insights from new reflection seismic data from Lakes Tanganyika and Malawi (Nyasa)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scholz, C. A.; Wood, D. A.; Shillington, D. J.; McCartney, T.; Accardo, N. J.

    2015-12-01

    The western branch of the East African Rift is characterized by modest amounts of mainly amagmatic extension; deeply-subsided, fault-controlled basins; and large-magnitude, deep seismicity. Lakes Tanganyika and Malawi are two of the world's largest lakes, with maximum water depths of 1450 and 700 m respectively. Newly acquired seismic reflection data, along with newly reprocessed legacy data reveal thick sedimentary sections, in excess of 5 km in some localities. The 1980's vintage legacy data from Project PROBE have been reprocessed through pre-stack depth migration in Lake Tanganyika, and similar reprocessing of legacy data from Lake Malawi is forthcoming. New high-fold and large-source commercial and academic data have recently been collected in southern Lake Tanganyika, and in the northern and central basins of Lake Malawi as part of the 2015 SEGMeNT project. In the case of Lake Tanganyika, new data indicate the presence of older sediment packages that underlie previously identified "pre-rift" basement (the "Nyanja Event"). These episodes of sedimentation and extension may substantially predate the modern lake. These deep stratal reflections are absent in many localites, possibly on account of attenuation of the acoustic signal. However in one area of southern Lake Tanganyika, the newly-observed deep strata extend axially for ~70 km, likely representing deposits from a discrete paleolake. The high-amplitude Nyanja Event is interpreted as the onset of late-Cenozoic rifting, and the changing character of the overlying depositional sequences reflects increasing relief in the rift valley, as well as the variability of fluvial inputs, and the intermittent connectivity of upstream lake catchments. Earlier Tanganyika sequences are dominated by shallow lake and fluvial-lacustrine facies, whereas later sequences are characterized by extensive gravity flow deposition in deep water, and pronounced erosion and incision in shallow water depths and on littoral platforms. The

  8. Tectonic structure of the continental Rifting of the northern margin of the South China Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cameselle, A. L.; Ranero, C. R.; Franke, D.; Barckhausen, U.

    2012-12-01

    We present multichannel seismic reflection images of about 2250 km of reprocessed seismic records collected during Sonne cruise 49 across the northern margin of the South China Sea. The data were collected in four seismic lines striking perpendicular to the strike of the margin. The lines cross the outer continental shelf and slope, and two of them continue across the central region of the basin. The four lines have been carefully reprocessed to improve signal to noise ratio including pre-stack statistical predictive deconvolution, pre-stack multiple attenuation by radon filtering and by FK filtering. Semblance-based velocity picking was before and after processing with analyses every 5 km or closer in areas of rough basement topography. Constant velocity stacks were also used in areas of interest. The data were stacked and subsequently post-stack time migrated using an FD algorithm and time and space variant smooth velocity models. The resulting sections display in detail the structure of post-rift and syn-rift sediment, the basement structure of fault-bounded blocks, often fault reflections, and very often clear and fairly continuous reflections from crust - mantle boundary. The four seismic images show the tectonic structure formed during -now inactive- rifting. From west to east the tectonic structure changes considerably as the amount of extension attained increases towards the east. In the western region the lines show the structure of the Xisha Trough, from the region where continental rifting stopped before continental-crust break up and separation to the east where a extension may have led to break up and subsequent to seafloor spreading. The images show clearly how the continental crust-mantle boundary progressively shallows to reach close to the top of the basement. The conjugate continental flanks of the rift display rather different styles of faulting producing a very asymmetric structure. The conjugate flanks display rather different amounts of fault

  9. The deep structure of Alpine-type orogens: how important is rift-inheritance?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tugend, Julie; Manatschal, Gianreto; Mohn, Geoffroy

    2016-04-01

    Collisional belts are commonly thought to result from the closure of oceanic basins and subsequent inversion of former rifted margins. The formation and evolution of collisional belts should therefore be closely interlinked with the initial architecture of former rifted margins. Reflection and refraction seismic data from present-day magma-poor rifted margins show the omnipresence of hyperextended domains (severely thinned continental crust (<10 km) and/or exhumed serpentinized mantle with minor magmatic additions) between unequivocal continental and oceanic domains. Integrating these new observations and exploring their impact on mountain building processes may result in alternative interpretations of the lithospheric structure of collisional orogens. We focus on the Pyrenees and Western to Central Alps, respectively resulting from the inversion of a Late Jurassic to Mid Cretaceous and an Early to Mid Jurassic rift system eventually floored by hyperextended crust, exhumed mantle or proto-oceanic crust. The rift-related pre-collisional architecture of the Pyrenees shows many similarities with that proposed for the Alps; although the width of the hyperextended and in particular of the proto-oceanic domains is little constrained. Contrasting with the Pyrenees, remnants of these domains are largely affected by orogeny-related deformation and show a HP-LT to HT-MP metamorphic overprint in the Alps. Nevertheless, in spite of the occurrence of these highly deformed and metamorphosed rocks constituting the internal parts of the Alps, the overall crustal and lithospheric structure looks surprisingly comparable. High resolution tomographic images across both orogens unravel the occurrence of a velocity anomaly dipping underneath the internal domains and progressively attenuated at depth that we interpret as former hyperextended domains subducted/underthrusted during collision. This interpretation contrasts with the classical assumption that the subducted material is made of

  10. Geometry of the neoproterozoic and paleozoic rift margin of western Laurentia: Implications for mineral deposit settings

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lund, K.

    2008-01-01

    The U.S. and Canadian Cordilleran miogeocline evolved during several phases of Cryogenian-Devonian intracontinental rifting that formed the western mangin of Laurentia. Recent field and dating studies across central Idaho and northern Nevada result in identification of two segments of the rift margin. Resulting interpretations of rift geometry in the northern U.S. Cordillera are compatible with interpretations of northwest- striking asymmetric extensional segments subdivided by northeast-striking transform and transfer segments. The new interpretation permits integration of miogeoclinal segments along the length of the western North American Cordillera. For the U.S. Cordillera, miogeoclinal segments include the St. Mary-Moyie transform, eastern Washington- eastern Idaho upper-plate margin, Snake River transfer, Nevada-Utah lower-plate margin, and Mina transfer. The rift is orthogonal to most older basement domains, but the location of the transform-transfer zones suggests control of them by basement domain boundaries. The zigzag geometry of reentrants and promontories along the rift is paralleled by salients and recesses in younger thrust belts and by segmentation of younger extensional domains. Likewise, transform transfer zones localized subsequent transcurrent structures and igneous activity. Sediment-hosted mineral deposits trace the same zigzag geometry along the margin. Sedimentary exhalative (sedex) Zn-Pb-Ag ??Au and barite mineral deposits formed in continental-slope rocks during the Late Devonian-Mississippian and to a lesser degree, during the Cambrian-Early Ordovician. Such deposits formed during episodes of renewed extension along miogeoclinal segments. Carbonate-hosted Mississippi Valley- type (MVT) Zn-Pb deposits formed in structurally reactivated continental shelf rocks during the Late Devonian-Mississippian and Mesozoic due to reactivation of preexisting structures. The distribution and abundance of sedex and MVT deposits are controlled by the

  11. Oppositely directed pairs of propagating rifts in back-arc basins: Double saloon door seafloor spreading during subduction rollback

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, A. K.

    2006-06-01

    When a continent breaks up into two plates, which then separate from each other about a rotation pole, it can be shown that if initial movement is taken up by lithospheric extension, asthenospheric breakthrough and oceanic accretion propagate toward the pole of rotation. Such a propagating rift model is then applied to an embryonic centrally located rift which evolves into two rifts propagating in opposite directions. The resultant rhombic shape of the modeled basin, initially underlain entirely by thinned continental crust, is very similar to the Oligocene to Burdigalian back-arc evolution of the Valencia Trough and the Liguro-Provencal Basin in the western Mediterranean. Existing well and seismic stratigraphic data confirm that a rift did initiate in the Gulf of Lion and propagated southwest into the Valencia Trough. Similarly, seismic refraction, gravity, and heat flow data demonstrate that maximum extension within the Valencia Trough/Liguro-Provencal Basin occurred in an axial position close to the North Balearic Fracture Zone. The same model of oppositely propagating rifts, when applied to the Burdigalian/Langhian episode of back-arc oceanic accretion within the Liguro-Provencal and Algerian basins, predicts a number of features which are borne out by existing geological and geophysical, particularly magnetic data. These include the orientation of subparallel magnetic anomalies, presumed to be seafloor spreading isochrons, in both basins; concave-to-the-west fracture zones southwest of the North Balearic Fracture Zone, and concave-to-the-east fracture zones to its northeast; a spherical triangular area of NW oriented seafloor spreading isochrons southwest of Sardinia; the greater NW extension of the central (youngest?) magnetic anomaly within this triangular area, in agreement with the model-predicted northwestward propagation of a rift in this zone; successively more central (younger) magnetic anomalies abutting thinned continental crust nearer to the pole of

  12. Structural evolution of the Abiquiu embayment, Rio Grande Rift: Implications for the development of transfer zones.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hicks, R. T.; Murphy, M. A.

    2006-12-01

    The Abiquiu embayment is located along the boundary between the Colorado Plateau and the Rio Grande rift in north central New Mexico. It is an early rift basin bordered by the Canones fault system on its west side that is oblique to the regional trend of the Rio Grande rift and lies within a region where the polarity of the rift changes. Knowledge of the geometry, kinematics, and slip history of the basin-bounding faults is important in understanding segmentation of the Rio Grande rift and may shed light on the development of transform zones in general. We present geologic mapping, stratigraphic analysis and structural analyses of geologic features in the Abiquiu area to assess the role of Abiquiu embayment in the development of the Rio Grande rift. Our mapping shows that the Canones fault system is an east-dipping, oblique normal fault system that strikes northeast for approximately 20 km. It juxtaposes Permian and Triassic age formations in its footwall against upper Jurassic rocks and 300 m of Tertiary basin fill in its hanging wall. Attitudes of pre-rift strata in the hanging wall define a basin-scale rollover structure, which implies the fault system is listric at depth. Fault slip data collected from the Canones fault system shows the mean slip direction is ENE, which yields nearly equal components of left- slip and normal dip-slip. Mode 1 fractures adjacent to the fault system strike between N20E and N47E, an orientation similar to the strike of basaltic dikes several kilometers east of the surface trace of the Canones fault system. Restoration of the contact between Permian and Triassic-age rocks in a direction parallel to the mean slip direction yields slip estimates that show along strike changes. In the southern part of the study area we estimate 300 m of net slip. In the north, we estimate approximately 425 m. The majority of the total slip occurred before deposition of the 8-10 Ma Lobato basalt. Offset of this basalt unit is less than 50 m, implying

  13. Combining detrital geochronology and sedimentology to assess basin development in the Rukwa Rift of the East African Rift System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hilbert-Wolf, Hannah; Roberts, Eric; Mtelela, Cassy; Downie, Bob

    2015-04-01

    We have employed a multifaceted approach to sedimentary provenance analysis in order to assess the timing and magnitude of tectonic events, sedimentation, and landscape development in the Western Branch of the East African Rift System. Our approach, termed 'Sedimentary Triple Dating', integrates: (1) U-Pb dating via LA-ICPMS; (2) fission track; and (3) (U-Th)/He thermochronology of detrital zircon and apatite. We integrate geochronology, thermochronology, and provenance analysis to relate the initiation of rifting events to regional dynamic uplift, sedimentation patterns, and interpret the far-reaching climatic and evolutionary effects of fluctuating rift flank topography in the Rukwa Rift, a segment of the Western Branch. This work provides additional data to support the recent concept of synchronous development of the Western and Eastern branches of the East African Rift System ~25 Ma, and better constrains the age, location and provenance of subsequent rifting and sedimentation events in the Rukwa Rift Basin. Investigation of well cuttings and outcrop samples from the Neogene-Recent Lake Beds Succession in the Rukwa Rift Basin revealed a suite of previously unrecognized tuffaceous deposits at the base of the succession. A population of euhedral, magmatic zircons from a basal Lake Beds tuff and Miocene-Pliocene detrital zircons from well cuttings suggest that Neogene rift reactivation and volcanism began ~9-10 Ma. This timing is consistent with demonstrated rifting in Uganda and Malawi, as well as with the initiation of volcanism in the Rungwe Volcanic Province at the southern end of the Rukwa Rift, and the estimated development of Lake Tanganyika to the north. Moreover, there appear to be a suite of unconformity bounded stratigraphic units that make up the Lower Lake Beds succession, and detrital zircon maximum depositional ages from these units suggests episodic sedimentation in the rift, punctuated by long hiatuses or uplift, rather than steady subsidence and

  14. The first australopithecine 2,500 kilometres west of the Rift Valley (Chad)

    PubMed

    Brunet, M; Beauvilain, A; Coppens, Y; Heintz, E; Moutaye, A H; Pilbeam, D

    1995-11-16

    The first sites with Pliocene and Pleistocene mammals west of the Rift Valley in Central Africa in northern Chad were reported in 1959 (ref. 1), and documented the presence of mixed savannah and woodland habitats. Further sites and a probable Homo erectus cranio-facial fragment were subsequently discovered. In 1993 a survey of Pliocene and Pleistocene formations in the Borkou-Ennedi-Tibesti Province of Chad (B.E.T.) led to the discovery of 17 new sites in the region of Bahr el Ghazal (classical Arabic for River of the Gazelles) near Koro Toro. One site, KT 12 (15 degrees 58'10"N, 18 degrees 52'46"E) yielded an australopithecine mandible associated with a fauna biochronologically estimated to be 3.0-3.5 Myr old. Australopithecine species described since 1925 are known from southern Africa and from sites spread along the eastern Rift Valley from Tanzania to Ethiopia (Fig. 1). This new find from Chad, which is most similar in morphology to Australopithecus afarensis, documents the presence of an early hominid a considerable distance, 2,500 km, west of the Rift Valley. PMID:7477344

  15. Fault Orientations at Obliquely Rifted Margins: Where? When? Why?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brune, Sascha

    2015-04-01

    Present-day knowledge of rifted margin formation is largely based on 2D seismic lines, 2D conceptual models, and corroborated by 2D numerical experiments. However, the 2D assumption that the extension direction is perpendicular to the rift trend is often invalid. In fact, worldwide more than 75% of all rifted margin segments have been formed under significant obliquity exceeding 20° (angle measured between extension direction and rift trend normal): During formation of the Atlantic Ocean, oblique rifting dominated at the sheared margins of South Africa and Patagonia, the Equatorial Atlantic margins, separation of Greenland and North America, and it played a major role in the protracted rift history of the North East Atlantic. Outside the Atlantic Ocean, oblique rifting occurred during the split between East and West Gondwana, the separation of India and Australia, India and Madagascar, Australia and Antarctica, as well as Arabia and Africa. It is presently observed in the Gulf of California, the Aegean and in the East African Rift. Despite its significance, the degree to which oblique lithospheric extension affects first-order rift and passive margin properties like surface stress pattern, fault azimuths, and basin geometry, is still not entirely clear. This contribution provides insight in crustal stress patterns and fault orientations by applying a 3D numerical rift model to oblique extensional settings. The presented forward experiments cover the whole spectrum of oblique extension (i.e. rift-orthogonal extension, low obliquity, high obliquity, strike-slip deformation) from initial deformation to breakup. They are conducted using an elasto-visco-plastic finite element model and involve crustal and mantle layers accounting for self-consistent necking of the lithosphere. Results are thoroughly compared to previous analogue experiments, which yields many similarities but also distinct differences for late rift stages and for high obliquity. Even though the model

  16. Architecture and early evolution of the Oslo Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sundvoll, B.; Larsen, B. T.

    1994-12-01

    A revised assessment of architecture and pre-rift fabric connections of the Oslo Rift has been undertaken and linked to a new appraisal of observations and data related to the initial phase of the rift evolution. In addition to half-graben segmentation, accommodation zones and transfer faults are readily identified in the linking sectors between the two main grabens and between graben segments. Axial flexures are proposed between facing half-grabens. The accommodation zones were generally sites of volcanism during rifting. Pre-rift tectonic structures played an influential role in the rift location and development. The deviant N-S axis of the Vestfold graben segment is viewed as related to pre-rift structural control through faults and shear zones. This area was probably a site of Proterozoic/Palaeozoic crustal and lithospheric attenuation. Field evidence suggests that the rift started as a crustal sag with no apparent surface faulting in a flat and low-lying land at a time about 305-310 Ma. Volcanism, sub-surface sill intrusion and faulting started about simultaneously some time after the initial sag (300-305 Ma). Faulting and basaltic volcanism were initially localized to transfer faults along accommodation zones and a NNW-SSE transtensional zone along the eastern margin of the incipient Vestfold graben segment. This transtensional zone was probably created by right-lateral simple shear tracing pre-rift structures in response to a regional stress field with the tensional axis normal and the maximum compressional axis parallel to the NNE-SSW-trending rift axis.

  17. Mid-Continent rift system - a frontier hydrocarbon province

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, C.K.; Kerr, S.D. Jr.

    1983-08-01

    Geophysical evidence in the Mid-Continent has led to delineation of a rift system active during the Proterozoic Y Era. The Mid-Continent rift system can be traced by the Mid-Continent gravity high and corresponding aeromagnetic anomaly signature from the surface exposure of the Keweenawan Supergroup in the Lake Superior basin southwest in the subsurface through Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska, and Kansas. The aeromagnetic anomaly signature of the rift trend discloses where these sediments have been preserved. Thick accumulations of upper Proterozoic sediments are indicated by both upward continuation of the aeromagnetic profiles across the rift trend and gravity models which incorporate: 1) a deep mafic body to create the narrow gravity high, 2) anomalously thick crust to account for the more regional gravity low, and 3) sedimentary accumulations on the Precambrian surface to explain the small-scale notches which occur within the narrow gravity high. Reflection seismic data are virtually unknown in the rift area; however, data recently acquired by COCORP across the southern end of the feature in Kansas provide evidence of thick stratified sequences in the rift valley. Studies of the East African rift have revealed that the tropical rift valley is an exceptionally fertile environment for deposition and preservation of kerogenous material. The Sirte, Suez, Viking, Dnieper-Donetz, and Tsaidam basins are just a few of the rift basins currently classed as giant producers. The existence of a rift basin trend with thick accumulations of preserved sediments, demonstrably organic rich, introduces the northern Mid-Continent US as a new frontier for hydrocarbon exploration.

  18. Anatomy of lithosphere necking during orthogonal rifting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nestola, Yago; Cavozzi, Cristian; Storti, Fabrizio

    2013-04-01

    The evolution of lithosphere necking is a fundamental parameter controlling the structural architecture and thermal-state of rifted margin. The necking shape depends on several parameters, including the extensional strain-rate and thermal layering of the lithosphere. Despite a large number of analogue and numerical modelling studies on lithosphere extension, a quantitative description of the evolution of necking through time is still lacking. We used analogue modelling to simulate in three-dimension the progression of lithosphere thinning and necking during orthogonal rifting. In our models we simulated a typical "cold and young" 4-layer lithosphere stratigraphy: brittle upper crust (loose quartz sand), ductile lower crust (silicon-barite mixture), brittle upper mantle (loose quartz sand), and ductile lower mantle (silicon-barite mixture). The experimental lithosphere rested on a glucose syrup asthenosphere. We monitored model evolution by periodic and coeval laser scanning of both the surface topography and the lithosphere base. After model completion, each of the four layers was removed and the top of the underlying layer was scanned. This technical approach allowed us to quantify the evolution in space and time of the thinning factors for both the whole lithosphere (βz) and the crust (γ). The area of incremental effective stretching (βy) parallel to the extensional direction was obtained from the βz maps.

  19. Sensitivity analysis of rift induced delamination with application to Rwenzori Mountains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wallner, Herbert; Schmeling, Harro

    2011-12-01

    Rift induced delamination (RID) was favoured as a geodynamic process explaining the special situation of an extremely elevated old crustal block located in a continental rift system, the Rwenzori Mountains. The concept of RID is an upwelling asthenosphere encircling stiff lithosphere. If temperature- and stress-dependent viscosity of the undermost lower crust is reduced and strength fails, the detachment of cold and dense mantle-lithosphere root is trigged. Surface expressions are propagating rift tips surrounding an uplifting less dense crustal block. This study was performed to test the scope of application of RID hypothesis. Characteristic features of the numerical models are kept constant, whereas parameters controlling the initial temperature anomaly, rheological properties and the background geotherm are varied systematically. The system answer is a bifurcation, either the anomaly cools down or the central mantle lithosphere detaches and sinks down, or, rather an unsuccessful and successful RID. The excess temperature of the prescribed initial anomaly is most sensitive and serves at the transition from cooling to delamination as a critical temperature. Delamination works only in certain ranges. The anomaly full width ranges between 20 and 50 km, the offset of the symmetric anomalies lies between 64 and 180 km and the top anomaly has to reach into the lower crust. The corresponding geometric characteristics of the Rwenzori region always lies inside the found parameter ranges for the delamination regime, even near the optimum. Quantitative parameters concerning rheology are uncertain but, qualitatively, conform to the available findings. Thus, we establish RID as a possible mechanism coinciding roughly with the local observations, such as, an old crustal horst inside a young rift system, a missing mountain root, the high seismicity, low seismic velocities in the lower crust, minor volcanism and extreme topography. If RID is valid for the very special situation

  20. Magmatic cycles pace tectonic and morphological expression of rifting (Afar depression, Ethiopia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Medynski, S.; Pik, R.; Burnard, P.; Dumont, S.; Grandin, R.; Williams, A.; Blard, P.-H.; Schimmelpfennig, I.; Vye-Brown, C.; France, L.; Ayalew, D.; Benedetti, L.; Yirgu, G.

    2016-07-01

    The existence of narrow axial volcanic zones of mid-oceanic ridges testifies of the underlying concentration of both melt distribution and tectonic strain. As a result of repeated diking and faulting, axial volcanic zones therefore represent a spectacular topographic expression of plate divergence. However, the submarine location of oceanic ridges makes it difficult to constrain the interplay between tectonic and magmatic processes in time and space. In this study, we use the Dabbahu-Manda Hararo (DMH) magmatic rift segment (Afar, Ethiopia) to provide quantitative constraints on the response of tectonic processes to variations in magma supply at divergent plate boundaries. The DMH magmatic rift segment is considered an analogue of an oceanic ridge, exhibiting a fault pattern, extension rate and topographic relief comparable to intermediate- to slow-spreading ridges. Here, we focus on the northern and central parts of DMH rift, where we present quantitative slip rates for the past 40 kyr for major and minor normal fault scarps in the vicinity of a recent (September 2005) dike intrusion. The data obtained show that the axial valley topography has been created by enhanced slip rates that occurred during periods of limited volcanism, suggestive of reduced magmatic activity, probably in association with changes in strain distribution in the crust. Our results indicate that the development of the axial valley topography has been regulated by the lifetimes of the magma reservoirs and their spatial distribution along the segment, and thus to the magmatic cycles of replenishment/differentiation (<100 kyr). Our findings are also consistent with magma-induced deformation in magma-rich rift segments. The record of two tectonic events of metric vertical amplitude on the fault that accommodated the most part of surface displacement during the 2005 dike intrusion suggests that the latter type of intrusion occurs roughly every 10 kyr in the northern part of the DMH segment.

  1. Tectonic focusing of voluminous basaltic eruptions in magma-deficient backarc rifts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anderson, Melissa O.; Hannington, Mark D.; Haase, Karsten; Schwarz-Schampera, Ulrich; Augustin, Nico; McConachy, Timothy F.; Allen, Katie

    2016-04-01

    The Coriolis Troughs of the New Hebrides subduction zone are among the youngest backarc rifts in the world. They reach depths of >3 km, despite their small size (<100 km in length and only 25-45 km wide) and their proximity to the arc front (∼50 km). The narrow, deep graben morphology is characteristic of magma-deficient arc rifts in the early stages of backarc extension, where the rate of extension and subsidence exceeds the magmatic input. Unexpectedly, the youngest graben, the Vate Trough, contains a centrally-located 1000-m tall and 14-km wide shield volcano with a large, 5 × 8 km breached summit caldera. The Nifonea axial volcano has a volume of ∼126 km3, reflecting unusually high extrusion rates, given its young age (<3 Ma), and the summit caldera hosts the remnants of a large lava lake, the first described from a submarine backarc setting. Extensive diffuse hydrothermal venting and several clusters of black smoker chimneys, with the highest recorded fluid temperatures (368 °C) in the SW Pacific, occur on the youngest lava flows. Comparison with similar axial volcanoes on the mid-ocean ridges suggests that the 46 ×106 m3 of sheet flows in the caldera could have been erupted in <30 hours. The focusing of voluminous basaltic eruptions into an otherwise magma-deficient backarc has been linked to strong left-lateral transtension caused by clockwise rotation and segmentation of the southern portion of the arc after collision with d'Entrecasteaux ridge. This study shows that the upper plate stresses can result in dramatic variability in magma supply and hydrothermal activity at the earliest stages of arc rifting and could explain the wide range of melt compositions, volcanic styles and mineral deposit types found in nascent backarc rifts.

  2. Geophysical studies of the West Antarctic Rift System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Behrendt, J. C.; Lemasurier, W. E.; Cooper, A. K.; Tessensohn, F.; TréHu, A.; Damaske, D.

    1991-12-01

    The West Antarctic rift system extends over a 3000 × 750 km, largely ice covered area from the Ross Sea to the base of the Antarctic Peninsula, comparable in area to the Basin and Range and the East African rift system. A spectacular rift shoulder scarp along which peaks reach 4-5 km maximum elevation marks one flank and extends from northern Victoria Land-Queen Maud Mountains to the Ellsworth-Whitmore-Horlick Mountains. The rift shoulder has maximum present physiographic relief of 5 km in the Ross Embayment and 7 km in the Ellsworth Mountains-Byrd Subglacial Basin area. The Transantarctic Mountains part of the rift shoulder (and probably the entire shoulder) has been interpreted as rising since about 60 Ma, at episodic rates of ˜1 km/m.y., most recently since mid-Pliocene time, rather than continuously at the mean rate of 100 m/m.y. The rift system is characterized by bimodal alkaline volcanic rocks ranging from at least Oligocene to the present. These are exposed asymmetrically along the rift flanks and at the south end of the Antarctic Peninsula. The trend of the Jurassic tholeiites (Ferrar dolerites, Kirkpatric basalts) marking the Jurassic Transantarctic rift is coincident with exposures of the late Cenozoic volcanic rocks along the section of the Transantarctic Mountains from northern Victoria Land to the Horlick Mountains. The Cenozoic rift shoulder diverges here from the Jurassic tholeiite trend, and the tholeiites are exposed continuously (including the Dufek intrusion) along the lower- elevation (1-2 km) section of Transantarctic Mountains to the Weddell Sea. Widely spaced aeromagnetic profiles in West Antarctica indicate the absence of Cenozoic volcanic rocks in the ice covered part of the Whitmore-Ellsworth-Mountain block and suggest their widespread occurrence beneath the western part of the ice sheet overlying the Byrd Subglacial Basin. A German Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources (BGR)-U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) aeromagnetic

  3. Rift zones and magma plumbing system of Piton de la Fournaise volcano: How do they differ from Hawaii and Etna?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Michon, Laurent; Ferrazzini, Valérie; Di Muro, Andrea; Villeneuve, Nicolas; Famin, Vincent

    2015-09-01

    On ocean basaltic volcanoes, magma transfer to the surface proceeds by subvertical ascent from the mantle lithosphere through the oceanic crust and the volcanic edifice, possibly followed by lateral propagation along rift zones. We use a 19-year-long database of volcano-tectonic seismic events together with detailed mapping of the cinder cones and eruptive fissures to determine the geometry and the dynamics of the magma paths intersecting the edifice of Piton de la Fournaise volcano. We show that the overall plumbing system, from about 30 km depth to the surface, is composed of two structural levels that feed distinct types of rift zones. The deep plumbing system is rooted between Piton des Neiges and Piton de la Fournaise volcanoes and has a N30-40 orientation. Above 20 km below sea level (bsl), the main axis switches to a N120 orientation, which permits magma transfer from the lithospheric mantle to the base of the oceanic crust, below the summit of Piton de la Fournaise. The related NW-SE rift zone is 15 km wide, linear, spotted by small to large pyroclastic cones and related lava flows and emits slightly alkaline magmas resulting from high-pressure fractionation of clinopyroxene ± olivine. This rift zone has low magma production rate of ~ 0.5-3.6 × 10- 3 m3s- 1 and an eruption periodicity of around 200 years over the last 30 ka. Seismic data suggest that the long-lasting activity of this rift zone result from regional NNE-SSW extension, which reactivates inherited lithospheric faults by the effect of underplating and/or thermal erosion of the mantle lithosphere. The shallow plumbing system (< 11 km bsl) connects the base of the crust with the Central Cone. It is separated from the deep plumbing system by a relatively large aseismic zone between 8 and 11 km bsl, which may represent a deep storage level of magma. The shallow plumbing system feeds frequent, short-lived summit and flank (NE and SE flanks) eruptions along summit and outer rift zones, respectively

  4. The Albertine Rift, East Africa: Initial rifting, long-term landscape evolution and final surface uplift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bauer, Friederike U.; Glasmacher, Ulrich A.; Ring, Uwe; Grobe, René W.; Starz, Matthias; Mambo, Vikandy S.

    2013-04-01

    The Albertine Rift and associated Rwenzori Mountains form a striking feature at the north-western portion of the East African Rift System. The Rwenzori Mtns are built up by a dissected Precambrian metamorphic basement block that has been uplifted to heights of more than 5 km. The fundamental subject addressed by this study is the temporal and spatial evolution of the Rwenzori Mtns and adjacent Albertine Rift (western Uganda and Eastern Congo) at different time scales. In order to unlock how and at what time the extreme surface uplift occurred, low-temperature thermochronology methods were applied and combined with thermokinematic modelling. By means of apatite fission-track, apatite and zircon (U-Th-Sm)/He dating, combined with 2D (HeFTy) and 3D (Pecube) thermokinematic modelling different phases of landscape evolution could be determined for the Albertine area, where movements of surface uplift can be traced from Palaeozoic to Neogene times. Since the Palaeozoic several cooling events affected the Albertine area and Rwenzori Mtns, as revealed from samples along the rift shoulders and across the mountain range. Results from low-temperature thermochronology and thermokinematic modelling demonstrate that the Rwenzoris were not exhumed as a coherent block but are composed of distinct decoupled blocks with diverging exhumation histories and block movements along inherited faults. Thus, the evolution of the Rwenzoris was not solely triggered by Neogene rifting; moreover, a Mesozoic topographic Albertine high is conceivable. Since the Miocene renewed rock and surface uplift of distinct blocks with forced movements at the western flank of the Rwenzoris occurred. Rock uplift, thereby, outweighed erosion, resulting in the recent high topography of the Rwenzoris and their asymmetric character. Detrital thermochronology data confirm a Neogene surface uplift and indicate transition of erosional forces in Plio-/Pleistocene times. Thermokinematic modelling, applied to samples

  5. The rift to drift evolution of the South China Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ranero, Cesar R.; Cameselle, Alejandra; Franke, Dieter; Barckhausen, Udo

    2016-04-01

    Re-processing with modern algorithms of multichannel seismic reflection records from the South China Sea provide novel images on the crustal structure of the continental margin and its boundary zone with the oceanic crust (COB). The selected re-processed seismic lines strike perpendicular to the margins' trend and cross the entire basin, providing complementary images of conjugated rift segments of the NW, SW, and E sub-basins. Re-processed sections image the post-rift and syn-rift sediment, and fault-bounded basement blocks, often also intra-crustal fault reflections that together provide detailed information of the tectonic structural style during rifting. Further, the largest imaging improvement has been obtained in the delineation of -very often- clear fairly continuous reflections from the crust-mantle boundary across the continental margin into the oceanic crust. The images show how crustal thickness and structure change in parallel to changes in the tectonic style of the deformation during the evolution of the rift. The interpreted COB occurs in regions where the tectonic style displays the most noticeable changes from segments where extension is dominated by normal faulting to segments where faulting is comparatively minor and the crust shows fairly gentle lateral thickness variations; these latter segments are interpreted as oceanic crust. The identification of the continental and oceanic tectonic domains permits to study the along-strike evolution in rifting processes and rift segmentation. Also, the comparison of the tectonic structure of the conjugated flanks of the continental rift across the ocean basins is used to understand the last stages of rifting and the relative importance of tectonic extension and magmatism in final break up and spreading initiation. Although there is ample evidence of important volcanism in the images, with some spectacular large conical volcanoes formed over continental crust and numerous sill-like reflections in the

  6. Early opening of initially closed Gulf of Mexico and central North Atlantic ocean

    SciTech Connect

    Van Siclen, D.C.

    1984-09-01

    This paper presents ideas on the early opening and evolution of the Gulf of Mexico and the central North Atlantic ocean. It discusses rifting activity, plate tectonics, magnetic anomalies, and the geologic time elements involved.

  7. Structural pattern at the northwestern sector of the Tepic-Zacoalco rift and tectonic implications for the Jalisco block, western Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Urrutia-Fucugauchi, Jaime; González-Morán, Tomás

    2006-10-01

    Analysis of the aeromagnetic anomalies over the northwestern sector of the Tepic-Zacoalco rift documents a NE-SW pattern of lineaments that are perpendicular to the inferred NW-SE boundary between the Jalisco block and the Sierra Madre Occidental. The boundary lies within the central sector of the Tepic-Zacoalco rift immediately north of the Ceboruco and Tepetiltic stratovolcanoes and extends up to the San Juan stratovolcano, where it intersects the NE-SW magnetic anomaly lineament that runs toward the Pacific coast (which intersects two volcanic centers). This N35°E lineament separates the central rift zone of low amplitude mainly negative anomalies (except those positive anomalies over the stratovolcanoes) from the zone to the north and west characterized by high amplitude positive long wavelength anomalies. The NE-SW lineament is parallel to the western sector of the Ameca graben and the offshore Bahia de Banderas graben and to the structural features of the Punta Mita peninsula at the Pacific coast, and thus seems to form part of a regional NE-SW pattern oblique to the proposed westward or northwestward motion of the Jalisco block. The orientation of this regional structural pattern at the northern end of the Tepic-Zacoalco rift seems consistent with proposed dominant SW-directed extension along the rift during the Pliocene and Quaternary, rather than with NW-SE lateral strike-slip faulting. The orthogonal pattern that characterizes the northernmost boundary of the Tepic-Zacoalco rift is oblique to the pattern observed in the Grande de Santiago river (which conforms the northern limit of the rift) and for the central-eastern sectors of the Ameca graben (south of the rift). This spatial arrangement of major lineaments and structural elements points to a complex tectonic history for the region that includes the rifting of the Gulf of California and margin deformation due to plate convergence and kinematic re-organization events, and which may have resulted in

  8. Middle Stone Age starch acquisition in the Niassa Rift, Mozambique

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mercader, Julio; Bennett, Tim; Raja, Mussa

    2008-09-01

    The quest for direct lines of evidence for Paleolithic plant consumption during the African Middle Stone Age has led scientists to study residues and use-wear on flaked stone tools. Past work has established lithic function through multiple lines of evidence and the spatial breakdown of use-wear and microscopic traces on tool surfaces. This paper focuses on the quantitative analysis of starch assemblages and the botanical identification of grains from flake and core tools to learn about human ecology of carbohydrate use around the Niassa woodlands, in the Mozambican Rift. The processing of starchy plant parts is deduced from the occurrence of starch assemblages that presumably got attached to stone tool surfaces by actions associated with extractive or culinary activities. Specifically, we investigate starch grains from stone tools recently excavated in northern Mozambique at the site of Mikuyu; which presumably spans the middle to late Pleistocene and represents similar sites found along the Malawi/Niassa corridor that links East, Southern, and Central Africa. Starch was extracted and processed with a diverse tool kit consisting of scrapers, cores, points, flakes, and other kinds of tools. The microbotanical data suggests consumption of seeds, legumes, caryopses, piths, underground storage organs, nuts, and mesocarps from more than a dozen families. Our data suggest a great antiquity for starch use in Africa as well as an expanded diet and intensification.

  9. The geographic distribution of fluoride in surface and groundwater in Ethiopia with an emphasis on the Rift Valley.

    PubMed

    Tekle-Haimanot, Redda; Melaku, Zenebe; Kloos, Helmut; Reimann, Clemens; Fantaye, Wondwossen; Zerihun, Legesse; Bjorvatn, Kjell

    2006-08-15

    This paper analyzes the most extensive database on fluoride distribution in Ethiopia. Of the total 1438 water samples tested, 24.2% had fluoride concentrations above the 1.5 mg/l recommended optimum concentration recommended by WHO. Regionally, by far the highest fluoride levels were recorded in the Rift Valley, where 41.2% of all samples exceeded the 1.5 mg/l level. Only 1.0% of the samples from the central and northwestern highlands and 10.0% in the southeastern highlands exceeded 1.5 mg/l. Larger proportions of deep wells (50.0%) and hot springs (90.0%) than shallow wells (27.2%) and cold springs (12.6%) exceeded the 1.5 mg/l level. The highest fluoride concentrations were recorded for Rift Valley lakes Shala (264.0 mg/l) and Abijata (202.4 mg/l) and the lowest in Lake Tana, and rivers, wells and springs in the highlands. The fluoride concentrations of the Awash River, which originates in the highlands and flows through the Rift Valley, increase downstream, giving concern over the current diversion of high-fluoride water from Lake Beseka. Of the various flourosis prevention methods tried in Ethiopia, the treatment of surface water has been shown to be the most feasible and effective for towns and large commercial farms in the Rift Valley, although defluoridation methods should be considered for smaller rural communities. PMID:16360195

  10. Papers presented to the Conference on the Processes of Planetary Rifting

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1981-01-01

    The basic problems of processes of planetary rifting are addressed from the following viewpoints: (1) speculation as to the origin and development of rifts; (2) rifts on other planets; (3) tectonics; (4) geology; (5) chemistry of the lithosphere; (6) physics of the lithosphere; and (7) resources associated with rifting. The state of ignorance on the subject and its remedy is debated.

  11. Reassessment of the rifting process in the Western Corinth Rift from relocated seismicity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lambotte, S.; Lyon-Caen, H.; Bernard, P.; Deschamps, A.; Patau, G.; Nercessian, A.; Pacchiani, F.; Bourouis, S.; Drilleau, M.; Adamova, P.

    2014-06-01

    The seismic activity in the western part of the Corinth Rift (Greece) over the period 2000-2007, monitored by a dense network of three-component stations, is analysed in terms of multiplets and high precision relocation using double difference techniques. This detailed analysis provides new insights into the geometry of faults at depth, the nature and the structure of the active zone at 6-8 km depth previously interpreted as a possible detachment, and more generally into the rifting process. The seismicity exhibits a complex structure, strongly varying along the rift axis. The detailed picture of the seismic zone below the rift indicates that its shallower part (at depths of 6-8 km) is 1-1.5 km thick with a complex microstructure, and that its deeper part (at depths of 9-12 km) gently dipping to the north (10-20°) is 0.1-0.3 km thick with a microstructure consistent with the general slope of the structure. Although the nature of this seismic zone remains an open question, the presence of seismicity beneath the main active area, the strong variability of the structure along the rift over short distances and the complex microstructure of the shallower part revealed by the multiplet analysis are arguments against the hypothesis of a mature detachment under the rift: this active zone more likely represents a layer of diffuse deformation. The geometry of the mapped active faults is not well defined at depth, as no seismicity is observed between 0 and 4 km, except for the Aigion Fault rooting in the seismic layer at 6 km depth with a dip of 60°. A distinct cloud of seismicity may be associated with the antithetic Kalithea Fault, on which the 1909 Fokis earthquake (Ms = 6.3) may have occurred. The link between the 1995 rupture (Ms = 6.2) and the faults known at the surface has been better constrained, as the relocated seismicity favours a rupture on an offshore, blind fault dipping at 30°, rather than on the deeper part of the East Helike Fault. Consequently, the 1995

  12. Magma-compensated crustal thinning in continental rift zones.

    PubMed

    Thybo, H; Nielsen, C A

    2009-02-12

    Continental rift zones are long, narrow tectonic depressions in the Earth's surface where the entire lithosphere has been modified in extension. Rifting can eventually lead to rupture of the continental lithosphere and creation of new oceanic lithosphere or, alternatively, lead to formation of wide sedimentary basins around failed rift zones. Conventional models of rift zones include three characteristic features: surface manifestation as an elongated topographic trough, Moho shallowing due to crustal thinning, and reduced seismic velocity in the uppermost mantle due to decompression melting or heating from the Earth's interior. Here we demonstrate that only the surface manifestation is observed at the Baikal rift zone, whereas the crustal and mantle characteristics can be ruled out by a new seismic profile across southern Lake Baikal in Siberia. Instead we observe a localized zone in the lower crust which has exceptionally high seismic velocity and is highly reflective. We suggest that the expected Moho uplift was compensated by magmatic intrusion into the lower crust, producing the observed high-velocity zone. This finding demonstrates a previously unknown role for magmatism in rifting processes with significant implications for estimation of stretching factors and modelling of sedimentary basins around failed rift structures. PMID:19212408

  13. A Blowing Snow Model for Ice Shelf Rifts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leonard, K. C.; Tremblay, L.; Macayeal, D. R.

    2005-12-01

    Ice melange (a mixture of snow, marine ice, and ice talus) may play various roles in the rates of propagation of iceberg-calving rifts through Antarctic ice shelves. This modeling study examines the role of windblown snow in the formation and maintenance of ice melange in the "nascent rift" in the Ross Ice Shelf (78 08'S, 178 29'W). The rift axis is perpendicular to the regional wind direction, allowing us to employ a two-dimensional blowing snow model. The Piektuk-Tuvaq blowing snow model (Dery and Tremblay, 2004) adapted the Piektuk blowing snow model for use in sea ice environments by including parameterization for open-water leads within the sea ice. This version of the model was used to study the initial conditions of a freshly-opened rift, as the input of blowing snow into the seawater within the rift promotes marine ice formation by cooling and freshening the surface water. We adapted the Piektuk-Tuvaq model both for the local climatic conditions and to incorporate the geometry of the rift, which is 30m deep and 100m wide (far deeper than a lead). We present the evolution of the topography within the rift for two cases. The first is an ice melange composed exclusively of snow and marine ice, the second uses an initial topography including large chunks of ice talus.

  14. Martian canyons and African rifts: Structural comparisons and implications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frey, H. V.

    1978-01-01

    The resistant parts of the canyon walls of the Martian rift complex Valled Marineris were used to infer an earlier, less eroded reconstruction of the major roughs. The individual canyons were then compared with individual rifts of East Africa. When measured in units of planetary radius, Martian canyons show a distribution of lengths nearly identical to those in Africa, both for individual rifts and for compound rift systems. A common mechanism which scales with planetary radius is suggested. Martian canyons are significantly wider than African rifts. The overall pattern of the rift systems of Africa and Mars are quite different in that the African systems are composed of numerous small faults with highly variable trend. On Mars the trends are less variable; individual scarps are straighter for longer than on earth. This is probably due to the difference in tectonic histories of the two planets: the complex history of the earth and the resulting complicated basement structures influence the development of new rifts. The basement and lithosphere of Mars are inferred to be simple, reflecting a relatively inactive tectonic history prior to the formation of the canyonlands.

  15. Composition of the crust beneath the Kenya rift

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mooney, W.D.; Christensen, N.I.

    1994-01-01

    We infer the composition of the crust beneath and on the flanks of the Kenya rift based on a comparison of the KRISP-90 crustal velocity structure with laboratory measurements of compressional-wave velocities of rock samples from Kenya. The rock samples studied, which are representative of the major lithologies exposed in Kenya, include volcanic tuffs and flows (primarily basalts and phonolites), and felsic to intermediate composition gneisses. This comparison indicates that the upper crust (5-12 km depth) consists primarily of quartzo-feldspathic gneisses and schists similar to rocks exposed on the flanks of the rift, whereas the middle crust (12-22 km depth) consists of more mafic, hornblende-rich metamorphic rocks, probably intruded by mafic rocks beneath the rift axis. The lower crust on the flanks of the rift may consist of mafic granulite facies rocks. Along the rift axis, the lower crust varies in thickness from 9 km in the southern rift to only 2-3 km in the north, and has a seismic velocity substantially higher than the samples investigated in this study. The lower crust of the rift probably consists of a crust/mantle mix of high-grade metamorphic rocks, mafic intrusives, and an igneous mafic residuum accreted to the base of the crust during differentiation of a melt derived from the upper mantle. ?? 1994.

  16. Structural evolution history of the Red Sea Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Almeida, G. A. F.

    2010-05-01

    The Red Sea Rift has been an object of comprehensive studies by several generations of geologists and geophysicists. Many publications and open-file reports provide insights into the geological history of this rift. Paleogene and Cretaceous rocks, which are considered to be prerift, are locally exposed at the margins of the Red Sea Rift. At the same time, some evidence indicates that at least some of these rocks are related to the early stage of the evolution of the Red Sea Rift. The available geological data suggest that the Red Sea region started its active evolution in the Cretaceous. As follows from lithostratigraphic data, the Cretaceous-Paleogene trough that predated the Oligocene-Quaternary rift covered this region completely or partially. The pre-Oligocene magmatism and geological evidence show that the Cretaceous-Paleogene trough was of the rift type. The Cretaceous-Eocene and Oligocene-Quaternary phases of rifting were separated by an epoch of uplifting and denudation documented by the erosion surface and unconformity.

  17. Tectonic Framework of the Kachchh Rift Basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Talwani, P.; Gangopadhyay, A. K.

    2001-05-01

    Evaluation of available geological data has allowed us to determine the tectonic framework of the Kachchh rift basin (KRB), the host to the 1819 Kachchh (MW 7.8), 1956 Anjar ( M 6.0) and the recent January 26, 2001 Bhachau (MW 7.6) earthquakes. The ~ 500 km x 200 km east-west trending KRB was formed during the Mesozoic following the break-up of Gondwanaland. It is bounded to the north and south by the Nagar Parkar and Kathiawar faults which separate it from the Precambrian granitic rocks of the Indian craton. The eastern border is the Radanpur-Barmer arch (defined by an elongate belt of gravity highs) which separates it from the early Cretaceous Cambay rift basin. KRB extends ~ 150 km offshore to its western boundary, the continental shelf. Following India's collision with Eurasia, starting ~ 50 MY ago, there was a stress reversal, from an extensional to the (currently N-S) compressional regime. Various geological observations attest to continuous tectonic activity within the KRB. Mesozoic sediments were uplifted and folded and then intruded by Deccan trap basalt flows in late Cretaceous. Other evidence of continuous tectonic activity include seismically induced soft sediment deformation features in the Upper Jurassic Katrol formation on the Kachchh Mainland and in the Holocene sequences in the Great Rann. Pleistocene faulting in the fluvial sequence along the Mahi River (in the bordering Cambay rift) and minor uplift during late Quaternary at Nal Sarovar, prehistoric and historic seismicity associated with surface deformation further attest to ongoing tectonic activity. KRB has responded to N-S compressional stress regime by the formation of east-west trending folds associated with Allah Bund, Kachchh Mainland, Banni, Vigodi, Katrol Hills and Wagad faults. The Allah Bund, Katrol Hill and Kachchh Mainland faults were associated with the 1819, 1956 and 2001 earthquakes. Northeast trending Median High, Bhuj fault and Rajkot-Lathi lineament cut across the east

  18. Inversion tectonics during continental rifting: The Turkana Cenozoic rifted zone, northern Kenya

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Le Gall, B.; VéTel, W.; Morley, C. K.

    2005-04-01

    Remote sensing data and revised seismic reflection profiles provide new insights about the origin of inverted deformation within Miocene-Recent basins of the Turkana rift (northern Kenya) in the eastern branch of the East African rift system. Contractional structures are dominated by weakly inverted sets of fault blocks within <3.7 Myr old synrift series. Most of reverse extensional faults involve components of oblique-slip, whereas associated hanging wall folds are characterized by large wavelength upright folding. The area of basin inversion is restricted to a 40 × 100 km elongated zone overlying a first-order N140°E trending fault zone in the basement, referred to as the N'Doto transverse fault zone (NTFZ). In the proposed kinematic model, inversion tectonics is assigned to permutation of principal stress axes (σ1/σ2) in addition to the clockwise rotation of extension (from nearly N90°E to N130°E) during Pliocene. The transition from pure extension (Miocene) to a wrench faulting regime (Pliocene) first results in the development of T-type fault networks within a dextrally reactivated shear zone (NTFZ). Inversion tectonics occurred later (<3.7 Ma) in response to a still rotated (˜20°) shortening axis (σ1) oriented N40°E that caused the oblique compression of earlier (NS to N20°E) extensional structures within the NTFZ. The origin of basin inversion and strain concentration in the Turkana rift is thus directly linked to a crustal weakness zone, transverse to the rift axis, and involving steep prerift anisotropies.

  19. Final Rifting and Continental Breakup in the South China Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Franke, D.; Savva, D.; Pubellier, M. F.; Steuer, S.; Mouly, B.; Auxietre, J. L.; Meresse, F.; Chamot-Rooke, N. R. A.

    2014-12-01

    The magma-poor or intermediate magmatic South China Sea basin shows a triangular shape with a SW pointing apex, which manifests a preceding propagating rift. The earliest phase of rifting started in the Early Paleocene when a Mesozoic convergent margin changed to extension. After about 30 Myrs of rifting, breakup in the major eastern subbasin of the SCS occurred in the Early Oligocene and subsequent breakup of the southwest subbasin took place in the Late Oligocene. Seismic reflection data imaging conjugate crustal sections result in a conceptual model for rift-evolution at conjugate margins in time and space. Distinct are regular undulations in the crust-mantle boundary. Individual rift basins are bounded to crustal blocks by listric normal faults on either side. Moho uplifts are distinct beneath major rift basins, while the Moho is downbended beneath crustal blocks. Most of the basin-bounding faults sole out within the middle crust. At the distal margins, detachment faults are located at a mid-crustal level where a weak zone decouples crust and mantle lithosphere during rifting. The lower crust in contrast is interpreted as being strong. Only in the region within about 50 km from the oceanic domain we suggest that normal faults reach the mantle, enabling potentially a coupling between the crust and the mantle. Here, at the proximal margins detachment fault dip either seaward or landward. Largely symmetric structures result from the initial rifting stage. At the future breakup position either of the rift basin bounding faults subsequently penetrates the entire crust, resulting in asymmetry at this location. However, asymmetric deformation which is controlled by large scale detachment faulting is confined to narrow areas and does not result in a margin-wide simple-shear model. Rather considerable along-margin variations are suggested resulting in alternating "upper and lower plate" margins.

  20. Ambient noise tomography of the western Corinth Rift, Greece

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giannopoulos, Dimitrios; Rivet, Diane; Sokos, Efthimios; Deschamps, Anne; Paraskevopoulos, Paraskevas; Lyon-Caen, Hélène; Pascal, Bernard; Tselentis, G.-Akis

    2016-04-01

    The Corinth Rift separates Peloponnesus to the south from main-land Greece to the north. It is one of the most active extensional intra-continental rifts in the world, with geodetically measured rates of extension varying from ~5 mm/yr at the eastern part to ~15 mm/yr at the western part. This work presents a first attempt to study the crustal velocity structure of the western Corinth Rift using ambient noise recordings. We used 3 yrs (01/2012-12/2014) of continuous waveform data recorded at 24 stations from the Corinth Rift Laboratory (CRL) and the Hellenic Unified Seismological Network (HUSN). All available vertical component time-series were cross-correlated to extract Rayleigh wave Green's functions. Group velocity dispersion curves between 0.5 and 7 s period were measured for each station pair by applying frequency-time analysis and then inverted to build group velocity maps of the study area. At the studied periods, the northern coast of the Corinth Rift is generally imaged as a region of elevated seismic velocities compared to the southern coast. More specifically, low velocities are observed in areas of Plio-Quaternary syn-rift sediments such as off-shore regions of the rift, the Mornos delta and a large part of the southern coast. Higher velocities are observed in pre-rift basement structures which are dominated mostly by carbonates. The preliminary results demonstrate good agreement with the major geological features of the area and agree relatively well with previous local earthquake tomography studies. This work will be the base for further investigations towards the study of the Corinth Rift structure using long time-series of ambient noise data.

  1. Recent rift-related volcanism in Afar, Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferguson, David J.; Barnie, Talfan D.; Pyle, David M.; Oppenheimer, Clive; Yirgu, Gezahegn; Lewi, Elias; Kidane, Tesfaye; Carn, Simon; Hamling, Ian

    2010-04-01

    Rift zones are the most common magmatic environment on Earth. However opportunities to observe active rifting are rare, and consequently the volcanological characteristics of rift systems are not well understood. An ongoing phase of magmatic rifting along a section of the Red Sea system in Afar, Ethiopia, presents an exceptional opportunity to constrain relationships between volcanism and crustal growth. Here, by integrating analyses of satellite images (i.e. MODIS, OMI, ASTER, and ALI) with field observations, we characterise two recent (August 2007 and June 2009) basaltic fissure eruptions in Afar and evaluate the role and significance of volcanism in the rifting process. Both events were brief (36-72 h) and erupted 4.4-18 × 10 6 m 3 of lava from a fissure system 4-6.5 km in length. Data from the spaceborne Ozone Monitoring Instrument (OMI) suggests total SO 2 emissions for each eruption of 26 ± 5 kt (2007) and 34 ± 7 kt (2009), consistent with complete degassing of the erupted magma volumes. Using geodetic models for the intrusive activity in Afar we estimate the partitioning of magma between intrusive and extrusive components, up to July 2009, to be ˜ 180:1. Comparing the first-order volcanic characteristics and the intrusive-extrusive volume balance for the Afar volcanism with data from the 1975-1984 Krafla rifting cycle (Iceland) suggests that the volcanic flux in Afar will rise significantly over the next few years as the stresses are increasingly relieved by dyking, and subsequent dykes are able to propagate more easily to the surface. As a consequence, basaltic fissure eruptions in this section of the Afar rift will become of increasing large magnitude as the rifting event matures over the next 5-10 yr. Using available models of magmatic rifting we forecast the likely size and location of future eruptions in Afar.

  2. Rifting of Continental Interiors: Some New Geophysical Data and Interpretations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keller, G. R.

    2005-12-01

    Rifting is one of the major processes that affect the evolution of the continents. This process sometimes leads to continental breakup and the formation of new oceans, but more often does not. This is presumably due to extension not progressing sufficiently to form a new plate margin resulting in a structure, which remains isolated in an intra-plate environment. The Southern Oklahoma aulacogen is such a feature, and the continental portion of the East African rift system may be a modern example. As more detailed geophysical and geological studies of rifts have become available in recent years, a complex picture of rift structure and evolution has emerged. Global patterns that reveal the connections between lithospheric structure (deep and shallow), magmatism (amount and style), amount of extension, uplift, and older structures remain elusive. However, our geophysical studies of modern and paleo rifts in North America, East Africa, and Europe makes it possible to make some general observations: 1). Magmatism in rifts is modest without the presence of a (pre-existing?) thermal anomaly in the mantle. 2). Magmatic modification of the crust takes many forms which probably depend on the nature of older structures present and the state of the lithosphere when rifting is initiated (i.e. cold vs. hot; fertility), 3) There is no clear relation between amount of extension and the amount of magmatic modification of the crust. 4) Brittle deformation in the upper crustal is complex, often asymmetrical and older features often play important roles in focusing deformation. However on a lithospheric scale, rift structure is usually symmetrical. 5) A better understanding of rift processes is emerging as we achieve higher levels of integration of a wide variety of geoscience data.

  3. Is the Gop rift oceanic? A reevaluation of the Seychelles-India conjugate margins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guan, Huixin; Werner, Philippe; Geoffroy, Laurent

    2016-04-01

    Gop Rift axis. We propose that the conspicuous buoyant central part of the Gop Rift is likely associated with a continental C-Block as described in a recent paper on conjugated VPMs8, at least in the southern part of the Gop Rift. The crust below the Laxmi basin is probably transitional continental i.e. strongly intruded. West of India and west of the Laxmi Ridge, the transition to the Carlsberg Basin occurs along a clearly-expressed transform fault, not through an extended and thinned continental margin. We reinterpret the whole system based on those observations and propositions, giving some explanations on controversial magnetic anomalies based on similar observations from the southern Atlantic Ocean. 1: Collier et al., 2008. Age of the Seychelles-India break-up. Earth and Planetary Science Letters. 2: Minshull et al., 2008. The relationship between riftingand magmatism in the northeastern Arabian Sea. Nature Geoscience. 3 : Armitage et al., 2010. The importance of rift history for volcanic margin. Nature. 4 : Krishna et al., 2006. Nature of the crust in the Laxmi Basin (14 degrees-20 degrees N), western continental margin of India. Tectonics. 5 : Misra et al., 2015. Repeat ridge jumps and microcontinent separation: insights from NE Arabian Sea. Marine and Petroleum Geology. 6 : Biswas, 1982. Rift basins in the western margin of India and their hydrocarbon prospects. Bull. Am. Assoc. Pet. Geol. 7 : Chatterjee et al., 2013. The longest voyage: Tectonic, magmatic, and paleoclimatic evolution of the Indian plate during its northward flight from Gondwana to Asia. Gondwana Research. 8 : Geoffroy et al., 2015. Volcanic passive margins: anotherway to break up continents. Scientific Reports.

  4. Precambrian rift: genesis of strata-bound ore deposits.

    PubMed

    Kanasewich, E R

    1968-09-01

    Study of deep seismic reflections has detected a Precambrian rift valley below flat-lying sediments in southern Alberta. The anomalous magnetic and gravity trends show that the rift is continuous across Alberta and British Columbia (through the Kimberley lead-zinc field) and possibly the Coeur d'Alene mining district of Idaho. There is evidence that these ore bodies were deposited in a Precambrian rift under conditions similar to those prevailing in the hot-brine areas of the modern Red Sea. PMID:17812797

  5. Regional magnetic anomaly constraints on continental rifting

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vonfrese, R. R. B.; Hinze, W. J.; Olivier, R.; Bentley, C. R.

    1985-01-01

    Radially polarized MAGSAT anomalies of North and South America, Europe, Africa, India, Australia and Antarctica demonstrate remarkably detailed correlation of regional magnetic lithospheric sources across rifted margins when plotted on a reconstruction of Pangea. These major magnetic features apparently preserve their integrity until a superimposed metamorphoric event alters the magnitude and pattern of the anomalies. The longevity of continental scale magnetic anomalies contrasts markedly with that of regional gravity anomalies which tend to reflect predominantly isostatic adjustments associated with neo-tectonism. First observed as a result of NASA's magnetic satellite programs, these anomalies provide new and fundamental constraints on the geologic evolution and dynamics of the continents and oceans. Accordingly, satellite magnetic observations provide a further tool for investigating continental drift to compliment other lines of evidence in paleoclimatology, paleontology, paleomagnetism, and studies of the radiometric ages and geometric fit of the continents.

  6. Diffuse Radiation from the Aquila Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jyothy, S. N.; Murthy, Jayant; Karuppath, Narayanankutty; Sujatha, N. V.

    2015-12-01

    We present an analysis of the diffuse ultraviolet (UV) background in a low latitude region near the Aquila Rift based on observations made by the Galaxy Evolution Explorer (GALEX). The UV background is at a level of about 2000 ph cm-2 s-1 sr-1 Å-1 with no correlation with either the Galactic latitude or the 100 μm infrared (IR) emission. Rather, the UV emission falls off with distance from the bright B2 star HIP 88149, which is in the centre of the field. We have used a Monte Carlo model to derive an albedo of 0.6-0.7 in the UV with a phase function asymmetry factor (g) of 0.2-0.4. The value for the albedo is dependent on the dust distribution while g is determined by the extent of the halo.

  7. The role of inheritance in structuring hyperextended rift systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manatschal, Gianreto; Lavier, Luc; Chenin, Pauline

    2015-04-01

    A long-standing question in Earth Sciences is related to the importance of inheritance in controlling tectonic processes. In contrast to physical processes that are generally applicable, assessing the role of inheritance suffers from two major problems: firstly, it is difficult to appraise without having insights into the history of a geological system; and secondly all inherited features are not reactivated during subsequent deformation phases. Therefore, the aim of our presentation is to give some conceptual framework about how inheritance may control the architecture and evolution of hyperextended rift systems. We use the term inheritance to refer to the difference between an "ideal" layer-cake type lithosphere and a "real" lithosphere containing heterogeneities and we define 3 types of inheritance, namely structural, compositional and thermal inheritance. Moreover, we assume that the evolution of hyperextended rift systems reflects the interplay between their inheritance (innate/"genetic code") and the physical processes at play (acquired/external factors). Thus, by observing the architecture and evolution of hyperextended rift systems and integrating the physical processes, one my get hints on what may have been the original inheritance of a system. Using this approach, we focus on 3 well-studied rift systems that are the Alpine Tethys, Pyrenean-Bay of Biscay and Iberia-Newfoundland rift systems. For the studied examples we can show that: 1) strain localization on a local scale and during early stages of rifting is controlled by inherited structures and weaknesses 2) the architecture of the necking zone seems to be influenced by the distribution and importance of ductile layers during decoupled deformation and is consequently controlled by the thermal structure and/or the inherited composition of the curst 3) the location of breakup in the 3 examples is not significantly controlled by the inherited structures 4) inherited mantle composition and rift

  8. Early-stage rifting of the northern Tyrrhenian Sea Basin: Results from a combined wide-angle and multichannel seismic study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moeller, S.; Grevemeyer, I.; Ranero, C. R.; Berndt, C.; Klaeschen, D.; Sallares, V.; Zitellini, N.; Franco, R.

    2013-08-01

    Extension of the continental lithosphere leads to the formation of rift basins and ultimately may create passive continental margins. The mechanisms that operate during the early stage of crustal extension are still intensely debated. We present the results from coincident multichannel seismic and wide-angle seismic profiles that transect across the northern Tyrrhenian Sea Basin. The profiles cross the Corsica Basin (France) to the Latium Margin (Italy) where the early-rift stage of the basin is well preserved. We found two domains, each with a distinct tectonic style, heat flow and crustal thickness. One domain is the Corsica Basin in the west that formed before the main rift phase of the northern Tyrrhenian Sea opening (˜8-4 Ma). The second domain is rifted continental crust characterized by tilted blocks and half-graben structures in the central region and at the Latium Margin. These two domains are separated by a deep (˜10 km) sedimentary complex of the eastern portion of the Corsica Basin. Travel-time tomography of wide-angle seismic data reveals the crustal architecture and a subhorizontal 15-17 ± 1 km deep Moho discontinuity under the basin. To estimate the amount of horizontal extension we have identified the pre-, syn-, and post-tectonic sedimentary units and calculated the relative displacement of faults. We found that major faults initiated at angles of 45°-50° and that the rifted domain is horizontally stretched by a factor of β ˜ 1.3 (˜8-10 mm/a). The crust has been thinned from ˜24 to ˜17 km indicating a similar amount of extension (˜30%). The transect represents one of the best imaged early rifts and implies that the formation of crustal-scale detachments, or long-lived low-angle normal faults, is not a general feature that controls the rift initiation of continental crust. Other young rift basins, like the Gulf of Corinth, the Suez Rift or Lake Baikal, display features resembling the northern Tyrrhenian Basin, suggesting that half

  9. POST-RIFT UPLIFT OF THE RIFTED MARGIN OF THE GULF OF ADEN

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bache, F.; Leroy, S.; Baurion, C.; Gorini, C.; Lucazeau, F.; Razin, P.; Robinet, J.; D'Acremont, E.; Autin, J.

    2009-12-01

    The Gulf of Aden is a young and narrow oceanic basin formed in Oligo-Miocene time between the rifted margins of the Arabian and Somalian plates. The distal margin and particularly the Ocean-Continent Transition (OCT) domain were previously studied considering a large set of data (Leroy et al., 2004; d'Acremont et al., 2005; d'Acremont et al., 2006; Autin, et al accepted). This study focus on the sedimentary cover identified on seismic reflection profiles collected during Encens-Sheba (2000) and Encens (2006) cruises. Sedimentary stratal pattern and seismic facies succession permit us to highlight a late tectonic event affecting the Dhofar margin. The understanding of facies and depositional sequences is a major challenge for the knowledge of the post-rift tectono-sedimentological evolution of the Gulf of Aden during the spreading. This study let us to distinguish three domains, which match to the structural segmentation inherited from the rifting episode of this margin. The sedimentary record is strongly controlled by a recent (quaternary to now) tectonic phase. Vertical movements lead to the formation of numerous instabilities on the continental slope and Mass-transport deposits (MTDs) on the lower slope and deep basin. The quaternary uplift rate increases eastward, toward the Socotra Hadbeen transform fault zone. The recurrence of the gravitational events shows that the margin history can be divided into active and passive periods since the beginning of the post-rifting evolution of North Aden (17-6 Ma). There is a main sedimentological switch in the studied zone around 7- 10 Ma. This major changes of sedimentation rate and facies types (slope-wash detritus, Mass-transport deposits MTDs, first occurrence of deep sea fans) is probably due to the uplift of the margin and climatic change (first occurrence of the Monsoon in this region). All the incision/erosion stages of continental slope (from slope instabilities set up to the formation of mature canyon) observed

  10. Link between extension, dyking and subsidence as the reconstruction tool of intraplate rifting mechanism (backstripping data, modelling and geochronology)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Polyansky, Oleg P.; Reverdatto, Vladimir V.; Babichev, Alexey V.

    2014-05-01

    predicted over a range of γ = 0.01-0.12 (average value 0.06, i.e., ~6%). This value seems acceptable if we consider cumulative sills and dykes thicknesses in the outcrops and borehole sections in the Upper Devonian-Lower Carboniferous sediments. For better rifting age resolution we sampled dolerites from the western, eastern and central dyke swarms, which were then analyzed by stepwise 40Ar/39Ar heating. The determined ages of the monomineral plagioclase and pyroxene fractions from the dyke samples (345-378 Ma) coincide well with fast subsidence and sedimentation phase in the Devonian defined by backstripping data. Dating of dyke intrusions shows following succession of rifting episodes: extension by dyking starts near the central axes (364-378 Ma), extending to the periphery areas on the opposite sides of the rift through (345-362 Ma). The established sequence of dyke intrusions is alternative to the oceanic crust spreading, at which the age of intrusions is increased from the spreading center in rift-perpendicular direction. Results of thermo-mechanical modelling of formation of the Vilyui rift basin are presented. The goal of 2D finite elements modelling is to demonstrate that the deep troughs can form in the continental crust under its limited extension. The 2D numerical simulation shows the possibility of considerable localized subsidence near the rift axis and explains why mafic dike swarms are concentrated on the basin periphery. Thus, the mechanism of the Vilyui basin formation by means of magmatic rifting is corroborated [Polyansky at al., 2013]. RFBR grant no. 14-05-00188.

  11. The effect of thermal weakening and buoyancy forces on rift localization: Field evidences from the Gulf of Aden oblique rifting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bellahsen, N.; Husson, L.; Autin, J.; Leroy, S.; d'Acremont, E.

    2013-11-01

    On the basis of field and geophysical data, analog and numerical models, we here discuss the role of buoyancy forces arising from thickness variations in the lithosphere during rifting. In the Gulf of Aden, an oceanized Tertiary oblique rift, several successive directions of extension and associated normal faults suggest that transient stress rotations occurred during rifting. Especially, rift-parallel faults (070°E) overprinted the early divergence-perpendicular normal faults (110°E). Moreover, some first-order differences are noticeable between the western part of the Gulf, which deformed under the Afar hot spot influence, and the eastern part. In the western Gulf of Aden, the ocean-continent transition (OCT) and the oceanic ridge have cut obliquely through the inherited and reactivated Mesozoic basins (100°E to 140°E). The OCT trend is parallel to the overall Gulf trend (070°E). In the eastern part, the oceanization occurred within few syn-rift 110°E-trending basins and the OCT trends mostly perpendicular to the divergence direction. Here, we propose that this contrast is strongly controlled by the Afar hot spot: during rifting times, the hot spot likely induced a hot thermal anomaly in the western asthenosphere. This may have triggered both thermal buoyancy forces and thermal weakening of the lithosphere that helped localizing the rift obliquely. In such localized rift, rift-perpendicular trending crustal buoyancy forces (i.e. around 160°E) have enhanced rift-parallel normal faults (070°E) during final rift localization into a narrow zone strongly oblique to the early syn-rift basins. As a consequence of the Afar hot spot, in the west, the ridge is long and straight; in the east, the ridge segments are rather long too (although less than in the west) as the ridge initiated parallel to the OCT; in between, the ridge is more segmented as both the hot spot influence gradually decreases eastward and the ridge initiated obliquely to the OCT.

  12. Low lower crustal velocity across Ethiopia: Is the Main Ethiopian Rift a narrow rift in a hot craton?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Keranen, K.M.; Klemperer, S.L.; Julia, J.; Lawrence, J. F.; Nyblade, A.A.

    2009-01-01

    [1] The Main Ethiopian Rift (MER) is a classic narrow rift that developed in hot, weak lithosphere, not in the initially cold, thick, and strong lithosphere that would be predicted by common models of rift mode formation. Our new 1-D seismic velocity profiles from Rayleigh wave/receiver function joint inversion across the MER and the Ethiopian Plateau indicate that hot lower crust and upper mantle are present throughout the broad region affected by Oligocene flood basalt volcanism, including both the present rift and the adjacent Ethiopian Plateau hundreds of kilometers from the rift valley. The region of hot lithosphere closely corresponds to the region of flood basalt volcanism, and we interpret that the volcanism and thermal perturbation were jointly caused by impingement of the Afar plume head. Across the affected region, Vs is 3.6-3.8 km/s in the lowermost crust and ???4.3 km/s in the uppermost mantle, both ??0.3 km/s lower than in the eastern and western branches of the East African Rift System to the south. We interpret the low Vs in the lower crust and upper mantle as indicative of hot lithosphere with partial melt. Our results lead to a hybrid rift mode, in which the brittle upper crust has developed as a narrow rift along the Neoproterozoic suture between East and West Gondwana, while at depth lithospheric deformation is distributed over the broad region (??400 km wide) thermally perturbed by the broad thermal upwelling associated with the Afar plume head. Development of both the East African Rift System to the south (in cold, strong lithosphere) and the MER to the north (in hot, weak lithosphere) as narrow rifts, despite their vastly different initial thermal states and depth-integrated lithospheric strength, indicates that common models of rift mode formation that focus only on temperature, thickness, and vertical strength profiles do not apply to these classic continental rifts. Instead, inherited structure and associated lithospheric weaknesses are

  13. Structural controls on the spatial distribution and geochemical composition of volcanism in a continental rift zone; an example from Owens Valley, eastern California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haproff, P. J.; Yin, A.

    2014-12-01

    Bimodal volcanism is common in continental rift zones. Structural controls to the emplacement and compositions of magmas, however, are not well understood. To address this issue, we examine the location, age, and geochemistry of active volcanic centers, and geometry and kinematics of rift-related faults across the active transtensional Owens Valley rift zone. Building on existing studies, we postulate that the spatial distribution and geochemical composition of volcanism are controlled by motion along rift-bounding fault systems. Along-strike variation in fault geometry and characteristics of active volcanism allow us to divide Owens Valley into three segments: southern, northern, and central. The southern segment of Owens Valley is a simple shear, asymmetric rift bounded to the west by the east-dipping Sierra Nevada frontal fault (SNFF). Active vents of Coso volcanic field are distributed along the eastern rift shoulder and characterized by the eruption of bimodal lavas. The SNFF within this segment is low-angle and penetrates through the lithosphere and into the ductile asthenosphere, allowing for mantle-derived magma to migrate across the weakest part of the fault zone beneath the eastern rift shoulder. Magma thermally weakens wall rocks and eventually stalls in the crust where the melt develops a greater felsic component prior to eruption. The northern segment of Owens Valley displays similar structural geometry, as the west-dipping White Mountains fault (WMF) is listric at depth and offsets the crust and mantle lithosphere, allowing for vertical transport of magma and reservoir emplacement within the crust. Bimodal lavas periodically erupted in the Long Valley Caldera region along the western rift shoulder. The central segment of Owens Valley is a pure shear, symmetric graben generated by motion along the SNFF and WMF. The subvertical, right-slip Owens Valley fault (OVF) strikes along the axis of the valley and penetrates through the lithosphere into the

  14. A New Look at Spreading in Iceland: Propagating Rifts, Migrating Transform Faults, and Microplate Tectonics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karson, J.; Horst, A. J.; Nanfito, A.

    2011-12-01

    Iceland has long been used as an analog for studies of seafloor spreading. Despite its thick (~25 km) oceanic crust and subaerial lavas, many features associated with accretion along mid-ocean ridge spreading centers, and the processes that generate them, are well represented in the actively spreading Neovolcanic Zone and deeply glaciated Tertiary crust that flanks it. Integrated results of structural and geodetic studies show that the plate boundary zone on Iceland is a complex array of linked structures bounding major crustal blocks or microplates, similar to oceanic microplates. Major rift zones propagate N and S from the hotspot centered beneath the Vatnajökull icecap in SE central Iceland. The southern propagator has extended southward beyond the South Iceland Seismic Zone transform fault to the Westman Islands, resulting in abandonment of the Eastern Rift Zone. Continued propagation may cause abandonment of the Reykjanes Ridge. The northern propagator is linked to the southern end of the receding Kolbeinsey Ridge to the north. The NNW-trending Kerlingar Pseudo-fault bounds the propagator system to the E. The Tjörnes Transform Fault links the propagator tip to the Kolbeinsey Ridge and appears to be migrating northward in incremental steps, leaving a swath of deformed crustal blocks in its wake. Block rotations, concentrated mainly to the west of the propagators, are clockwise to the N of the hotspot and counter-clockwise to the S, possibly resulting in a component of NS divergence across EW-oriented rift zones. These rotations may help accommodate adjustments of the plate boundary zone to the relative movements of the N American and Eurasian plates. The rotated crustal blocks are composed of highly anisotropic crust with rift-parallel internal fabric generated by spreading processes. Block rotations result in reactivation of spreading-related faults as major rift-parallel, strike-slip faults. Structural details found in Iceland can help provide information

  15. Lithospheric thinning beneath rifted regions of Southern California.

    PubMed

    Lekic, Vedran; French, Scott W; Fischer, Karen M

    2011-11-11

    The stretching and break-up of tectonic plates by rifting control the evolution of continents and oceans, but the processes by which lithosphere deforms and accommodates strain during rifting remain enigmatic. Using scattering of teleseismic shear waves beneath rifted zones and adjacent areas in Southern California, we resolve the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary and lithospheric thickness variations to directly constrain this deformation. Substantial and laterally abrupt lithospheric thinning beneath rifted regions suggests efficient strain localization. In the Salton Trough, either the mantle lithosphere has experienced more thinning than the crust, or large volumes of new lithosphere have been created. Lack of a systematic offset between surface and deep lithospheric deformation rules out simple shear along throughgoing unidirectional shallow-dipping shear zones, but is consistent with symmetric extension of the lithosphere. PMID:21979933

  16. Serpentized mantle at rifted margins: The Goban Spur example

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bullock, A. D.; Minshull, T. A.

    2002-12-01

    The crustal structure of rifted continental margins can tell us about the processes that operated from continental extension to eventual break-up and sea floor spreading. Variations between margins may record different processes operating during extension or indicate changes in the external geological controls such as mantle plume influence. Extension between Europe and North America began in the mid Cretaceous, dated at the Goban Spur-Flemish Cap rift as late Hauterivian-early Barremian (126-128 Ma) from deep sea drilling (DSDP leg 80) results on the Goban Spur margin. Marine magnetic anomaly 34 can be identified clearly on both margins and indicates that sea floor spreading began no later than 83 Ma. Syn-rift volcanism is limited to a 20 km basaltic body, with considerable lateral extent, at the foot of the continental slope, emplaced at the end of continental rifting. \

  17. Relationship of coronae, regional plains and rift zones on Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krassilnikov, A. S.; Kostama, V.-P.; Aittola, M.; Guseva, E. N.; Cherkashina, O. S.

    2012-08-01

    Coronae and rifts are the most prominent volcano-tectonic features on the surface of Venus. Coronae are large radial-concentric structures with diameters of 100 to over 1000 km. They have varied topographical shapes, radial and concentric fracturing and compressional tectonic structures are common for their annuli. Massive volcanism is also connected with some of the structures. Coronae are interpreted to be the result of updoming and fracturing on the surface due to interaction of mantle diapirs with the lithosphere and its subsequent gravitational relaxation. According to Stofan et al. (2001), two types of coronae are observed: type 1 - coronae that have annuli of concentric ridges and/or fractures (407 structures), and type 2 that have similar characteristics to type 1 but lack a complete annulus of ridges and fractures (107 structures). We analyzed 20% of this coronae population (we chose each fifth structure from the Stofan et al. (2001) catalog; 82 coronae of type 1 and 22 coronae of type 2, in total 104 coronae) for the (1) spatial distribution of rift structures and time relationship of rift zones activity with time of regional volcanic plains emplacement, and (2) tectonics, volcanism, age relative to regional plains and relationship with rifts. Two different age groups of rifts on Venus were mapped at the scale 1:50 000 000: old rifts that predate and young rifts that postdate regional plains. Most of young rifts inherit strikes of old rifts and old rifts are reworked by them. This may be evidence of rift-produced uplift zones that were probably mostly stable during both types of rifts formation. Evolution of distribution of rift systems with time (decreasing of distribution and localization of rift zones) imply thickening of the lithosphere with time. Coronae-producing mantle diapirism and uplift of mantle material in rift zones are not well correlated at least in time in most cases, because majority of coronae (77%) of both types has no genetic

  18. Sociocultural and Economic Dimensions of Rift Valley Fever

    PubMed Central

    Muga, Geoffrey Otieno; Onyango-Ouma, Washington; Sang, Rosemary; Affognon, Hippolyte

    2015-01-01

    Health researchers have advocated for a cross-disciplinary approach to the study and prevention of infectious zoonotic diseases, such as Rift Valley Fever. It is believed that this approach can help bring out the social determinants and effects of the zoonotic diseases for the design of appropriate interventions and public health policy. A comprehensive literature review using a systematic search strategy was undertaken to explore the sociocultural and economic factors that influence the transmission and spread of Rift Valley Fever. Although the findings reveal a paucity of social research on Rift Valley Fever, they suggest that livestock sacrificial rituals, food preparation and consumption practices, gender roles, and inadequate resource base for public institutions are the key factors that influence the transmission. It is concluded that there is need for cross-disciplinary studies to increase the understanding of Rift Valley Fever and facilitate appropriate and timely response and mitigation measures. PMID:25688166

  19. The geology and geophysics of the Oslo rift

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ruder, M. E.

    1981-01-01

    The regional geology and geophysical characteristics of the Oslo graben are reviewed. The graben is part of a Permian age failed continental rift. Alkali olivine, tholefitic, and monzonitic intrusives as well as basaltic lavas outline the extent of the graben. Geophysical evidence indicates that rifting activity covered a much greater area in Skagerrak Sea as well as the Paleozoic time, possibly including the northern Skagerrak Sea as well as the Oslo graben itself. Much of the surficial geologic characteristics in the southern part of the rift have since been eroded or covered by sedimentation. Geophysical data reveal a gravity maximum along the strike of the Oslo graben, local emplacements of magnetic material throughout the Skagerrak and the graben, and a slight mantle upward beneath the rift zone. Petrologic and geophysical maps which depict regional structure are included in the text. An extensive bibliography of pertinent literature published in English between 1960 and 1980 is also provided.

  20. Geochemical evidence of mantle reservoir evolution during progressive rifting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rooney, T. O.; Mohr, P.; Dosso, L.; Hall, C. M.

    2010-12-01

    The Afar region in East Africa, which represents the triple junction of three well-exposed Cenozoic rift systems, is a pivotal domain in the study of rift evolution. The western margin of Afar, defined by a wide transitional region from plateau to rift floor, developed in response to the rifting of the Red Sea commencing shortly after the eruption of the ~31-29 Ma Ethiopian-Yemen flood basalts. The Oligocene lava sequence which covers this rift margin was fed from intensive diking. The dikes and the block-faulting and monoclinal warping that followed provide an opportunity to probe the geochemical reservoirs preserved in the magmatic record and the development of the rifting processes. Argon geochronology reveals that dikes along the western Afar margin span the entire history of rift evolution from the initial Oligocene flood basalt event to the development of focused zones of intrusion in rift marginal basins. Major and trace element, and isotopic results (Sr-Nd-Pb-Hf) from these dikes demonstrate temporal geochemical heterogeneity defined by variable contributions from the Afar plume, depleted mantle and African lithosphere, consistent with studies of Quaternary basalts from the Ethiopian Rift. On a broader scale our results show that as the western Afar margin matures, the initially significant contribution from the Afar plume wanes in favor of shallow asthenospheric and lithospheric reservoirs. The early dikes, which are coincident with the initial weakening of the lithosphere in a magma-assisted rifting model, geochemically resemble the widespread plume-derived flood basalts and shields that constitute the Ethiopian Plateau. Subsequent diking is characterized by a lesser role for the Afar plume and greater contributions from the African lithosphere and depleted mantle. During the terminal stage of dike emplacement, where focused magmatic intrusion accommodated extension, a more significant fraction is derived from the depleted mantle and less of a

  1. Parameters influencing the location and characteristics of volcanic eruptions in a youthful extensional setting: Insights from the Virunga Volcanic Province, in the Western Branch of the East African Rift System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smets, Benoît; d'Oreye, Nicolas; Kervyn, Matthieu; Kervyn, François

    2016-04-01

    The East African Rift System (EARS) is often mentioned as the modern archetype for rifting and continental break-up (Calais et al., 2006, GSL Special Publication 259), showing the complex interaction between rift faults, magmatism and pre-existing structures of the basement. Volcanism in the EARS is characterized by very active volcanoes, several of them being among the most active on Earth (Wright et al., 2015, GRL 42). Such intense volcanic activity provides useful information to study the relationship between rifting, magmatism and volcanism. This is the case of the Virunga Volcanic Province (VVP) located in the central part of the Western Branch of the EARS, which hosts two of the most active African volcanoes, namely Nyiragongo and Nyamulagira. Despite the intense eruptive activity in the VVP, the spatial distribution of volcanism and its relationship with the extensional setting remain little known. Here we present a study of the interaction between tectonics, magmatism and volcanism at the scale of the Kivu rift section, where the VVP is located, and at the scale of a volcano, by studying the dense historical eruptive activity of Nyamulagira. Both the complex Precambrian basement and magmatism appear to contribute to the development of the Kivu rift. The presence of transfer zones north and south of the Lake Kivu rift basin favoured the development of volcanic provinces at these locations. Rift faults, including reactivated Precambrian structures influenced the location of volcanism within the volcanic provinces and the rift basin. At a more local scale, the historical eruptive activity of Nyamulagira highlights that, once a composite volcano developed, the gravitational stress field induced by edifice loading becomes the main parameter that influence the location, duration and lava volume of eruptions.

  2. An updated global earthquake catalogue for stable continental regions: reassessing the correlation with ancient rifts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schulte, Saskia M.; Mooney, Walter D.

    2005-06-01

    We present an updated global earthquake catalogue for stable continental regions (SCRs; i.e. intraplate earthquakes) that is available on the Internet. Our database contains information on location, magnitude, seismic moment and focal mechanisms for over 1300 M (moment magnitude) >= 4.5 historic and instrumentally recorded crustal events. Using this updated earthquake database in combination with a recently published global catalogue of rifts, we assess the correlation of intraplate seismicity with ancient rifts on a global scale. Each tectonic event is put into one of five categories based on location: (i) interior rifts/taphrogens, (ii) rifted continental margins, (iii) non-rifted crust, (iv) possible interior rifts and (v) possible rifted margins. We find that approximately 27 per cent of all events are classified as interior rifts (i), 25 per cent are rifted continental margins (ii), 36 per cent are within non-rifted crust (iii) and 12 per cent (iv and v) remain uncertain. Thus, over half (52 per cent) of all events are associated with rifted crust, although within the continental interiors (i.e. away from continental margins), non-rifted crust has experienced more earthquakes than interior rifts. No major change in distribution is found if only large (M>= 6.0) earthquakes are considered. The largest events (M>= 7.0) however, have occurred predominantly within rifts (50 per cent) and continental margins (43 per cent). Intraplate seismicity is not distributed evenly. Instead several zones of concentrated seismicity seem to exist. This is especially true for interior rifts/taphrogens, where a total of only 12 regions are responsible for 74 per cent of all events and as much as 98 per cent of all seismic moment released in that category. Of the four rifts/taphrogens that have experienced the largest earthquakes, seismicity within the Kutch rift, India, and the East China rift system, may be controlled by diffuse plate boundary deformation more than by the presence

  3. An updated global earthquake catalogue for stable continental regions: Reassessing the correlation with ancient rifts

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schulte, S.M.; Mooney, W.D.

    2005-01-01

    We present an updated global earthquake catalogue for stable continental regions (SCRs; i.e. intraplate earthquakes) that is available on the Internet. Our database contains information on location, magnitude, seismic moment and focal mechanisms for over 1300 M (moment magnitude) ??? 4.5 historic and instrumentally recorded crustal events. Using this updated earthquake database in combination with a recently published global catalogue of rifts, we assess the correlation of intraplate seismicity with ancient rifts on a global scale. Each tectonic event is put into one of five categories based on location: (i) interior rifts/taphrogens, (ii) rifted continental margins, (iii) non-rifted crust, (iv) possible interior rifts and (v) possible rifted margins. We find that approximately 27 per cent of all events are classified as interior rifts (i), 25 per cent are rifted continental margins (ii), 36 per cent are within non-rifted crust (iii) and 12 per cent (iv and v) remain uncertain. Thus, over half (52 per cent) of all events are associated with rifted crust, although within the continental interiors (i.e. away from continental margins), non-rifted crust has experienced more earthquakes than interior rifts. No major change in distribution is found if only large (M ??? 6.0) earthquakes are considered. The largest events (M ??? 7.0) however, have occurred predominantly within rifts (50 per cent) and continental margins (43 per cent). Intraplate seismicity is not distributed evenly. Instead several zones of concentrated seismicity seem to exist. This is especially true for interior rifts/taphrogens, where a total of only 12 regions are responsible for 74 per cent of all events and as much as 98 per cent of all seismic moment released in that category. Of the four rifts/taphrogens that have experienced the largest earthquakes, seismicity within the Kutch rift, India, and the East China rift system, may be controlled by diffuse plate boundary deformation more than by the

  4. Spatial changes of seismic attenuation and multiscale geological heterogeneity in the Baikal rift and surroundings from analysis of coda waves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dobrynina, Anna A.; Sankov, Vladimir A.; Chechelnitsky, Vladimir V.; Déverchère, Jacques

    2016-04-01

    The Baikal rift system is undergoing an active tectonic deformation expressed by a high level of seismic activity. This deformation leads to physical and mechanical changes of crustal properties which can be investigated by the seismic quality factor and its frequency dependence. Using a single backscattering model, a seismic quality-factor (QC), a frequency parameter (n) and an attenuation coefficient (δ) have been estimated by analyzing coda waves of 274 local earthquakes of the Baikal rift system for nineteen lapse time windows (W) from 10 to 100 s every 5 s and for six central frequencies (0.3, 0.75, 1.5, 3, 6 and 12 Hz). The average QC value increases with the frequency and lapse time window from 46 ± 52 (at 0.75 Hz) to 502 ± 109 (at 12 Hz) for W = 10 s and from 114 ± 49 (at 0.3 Hz) to 1865 ± 679 (at 12 Hz) for W = 100 s. The values of QC(f) and δ were estimated for the whole Baikal rift system and for separate tectonic blocks: the stable Siberian Platform, main rift basins, spurs and uplifts. Along the rift system, the Q0-value (QC-factor at the frequency f = 1 Hz) varies within 72-109 and the frequency parameter n ranges from 0.87 to 1.22, whereas Q0 is 134 and n is 0.48 for the stable Siberian Platform. Vertical variations of attenuation reveal that sharp changes of δ and n are confined to the velocity discontinuities. The comparison of lateral variations of seismic wave attenuation and geological and geophysical characteristics of the Baikal rift system shows that attenuation is correlated with both seismic activity and heat flow and in a lesser degree with the surface fault density and the age of the crust. Seismic wave attenuation found across the main shear zones of the south-western Baikal rift (Main Sayan strike-slip fault zone and Tunka, Obruchev and Primorsky normal faults) is increased by more than 25-60% compared to the neighboring areas.

  5. Permo-Triassic structural evolution of the Argana Valley, impact of the Atlantic rifting in the High Atlas, Morocco

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baudon, Catherine; Redfern, Jonathan; Van Den Driessche, Jean

    2012-04-01

    basin or a wide rift. Comparison with other Permo-Triassic basins on the Atlantic margin and in the High Atlas suggests that the structural evolution in the western part of the High Atlas has been mainly affected by Atlantic rifting. The influence of Tethys rifting is confined to the central part of the High Atlas, the Massif Ancien acting as a structural buffer between the two realms.

  6. Ground deformation across the Corinth rift from 22 years of GPS observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Briole, Pierre

    2013-04-01

    Between 1990 and 2012 sixteen GPS campaigns have been carried out in the western and central rift of Corinth area and surroundings in order to map and monitor the extension and the vertical motions of the rift. Since 2001 five permanent GPS stations are also operated in the western rift plus a EUREF station located at the University of Patras. Fieldwork involved in total more than eighty people. The campaign network was designed as the sum of a "first order" network with approximately 70 points measured in several campaigns during sessions of several days and a "second order" with more than 100 points measured once during a few hours and available for future measurements. Spacing between points in the centre of the network (Corinth Rift Laboratory, CRL, http://crlab.eu) is approximately one point every five kilometres. This density was defined so as sample each main known fault of the southern coast of the rift and to provide in principle ten to twenty points with significant motion in case of a M=6 earthquake like the June 15, 1995 Aigion earthquake, and possibly one point with significant motion in case of M=5 shallow earthquake like those of January 18 and 22, 2010 near Nafpaktos. The density of points is less outside the central area but enough to provide constraints on the boundary conditions of the rift, in particular at its western termination near the city of Patras. The percentage of destroyed points is approximately 10% in 10 years and if maintained the network could be usable during several more decades. Kinematic GPS data were also acquired along several hundred of kilometres of roads on both sides of the rift. The ten years time series at the five permanent stations provides an accurate determination of the overall extension and a local reference frame for the network. The permanent station located at Trizonia island exhibits a 2mm/yr subsidence rate, the four others (Kounina, Psaromita, Lidoriki, Efpalio) show no vertical velocity. However Efpalio

  7. Geochemistry of East African Rift basalts: An overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Furman, Tanya

    2007-06-01

    Mafic lavas erupted along the East African Rift System from the Afar triangle in northern Ethiopia to the Rungwe province in southern Tanzania display a wide range of geochemical and isotopic compositions that reflect heterogeneity in both source and process. In areas with the lowest degree of crustal extension (the Western and Southern Kenya Rifts) primitive lavas record the greatest extent of lithospheric melting, manifest in elevated abundances of incompatible elements and highly radiogenic Sr-Nd-Pb isotopic compositions. Where prolonged extension has removed most or all of the mantle lithosphere (the Turkana and Northern Kenya Rifts), a larger role for sub-lithospheric processes is indicated. At intermediate degrees of extension (the Main Ethiopian Rift) both lithospheric and sub-lithospheric contributions are observed, and crustal assimilation occurs in some cases. Despite the wide compositional range of African Rift basalts, a restricted number of source domains contribute to magmatism throughout the area. These individual domains are: (1) the subcontinental mantle lithosphere; (2) a plume source with high-μ Sr-Nd-Pb-He isotopic affinities, present in all areas within and south of the Turkana Depression; and (3) a plume source with isotopic signatures analogous to those observed in some ocean islands, including high 3He/ 4He values, present throughout the Ethiopian Rift and the Afar region. The two plume sources may both be derived from the South African Superplume, which is likely to be a compositionally heterogeneous feature of the lower mantle.

  8. Buried Mesozoic rift basins of Moroccan Atlantic continental margin

    SciTech Connect

    Mohamed, N.; Jabour, H.; El Mostaine, M.

    1995-08-01

    The Atlantic continental margin is the largest frontier area for oil and gas exploration in Morocco. Most of the activity has been concentrated where Upper Jurassic carbonate rocks have been the drilling objectives, with only one significant but non commercial oil discovery. Recent exploration activities have focused on early Mesozoic Rift basins buried beneath the post-rift sediments of the Middle Atlantic coastal plain. Many of these basins are of interest because they contain fine-grained lacustrine rocks that have sufficient organic richness to be classified as efficient oil prone source rock. Location of inferred rift basins beneath the Atlantic coastal plain were determined by analysis of drilled-hole data in combination with gravity anomaly and aeromagnetic maps. These rift basins are characterized by several half graben filled by synrift sediments of Triassic age probably deposited in lacustrine environment. Coeval rift basins are known to be present in the U.S. Atlantic continental margin. Basin modeling suggested that many of the less deeply bored rift basins beneath the coastal plain are still within the oil window and present the most attractive exploration targets in the area.

  9. P Wave Velocity Structure Beneath the Baikal Rift Axis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brazier, R. A.; Nyblade, A. A.; Boman, E. C.

    2001-12-01

    Over 100 p wave travel times from the 1500 km en echelon Baikal Rift system are used in this study.The events range 3 to 13 degrees from Talaya, Russia (TLY) along the axis of southwest northeast trending rift in East Siberia. A Herglotz Wiechert inversion of these events resolved a crust of 6.4 km/s and a gradient in the mantle starting at 35 km depth and 7.7 km/s down to 200 km depth and 8.2 km/s. This is compatible with Gao et al,1994 cross sectional structure which cuts the rift at about 400km from TLY. The Baikal Rift hosts the deepest lake and is the most seismically active rift in the world. It is one of the few continental rifts, it separates the Siberian craton and the Syan-Baikal mobile fold belt. Two events, the March 21 1999 magnitude 5.7 earthquake 638 km from TLY and the November 13th 1995 magnitude 5.9 earthquake 863 km from TLY were modeled for there PnL wave structure using the discrete wavenumber method and the Harvard CMT solutions with adjusted depths from p-pP times. The PnL signals match well. A genetic algorithm will used to perturb the velocity structure and compare to a selection of the events between 3 and 13 degrees many will require moment tensor solutions.

  10. Sedimentary deposits in response to rift geometry in Malawi, Africa

    SciTech Connect

    Bishop, M.G. )

    1991-03-01

    Sedimentary deposits of the Malawi continental rift basin are a direct result of topography and tectonics unique to rift structure. Recent models describe rifts as asymmetric half-graben connected in series by transfer of accommodation zones. Half-graben consist of roughly parallel, tilted fault blocks stepping up from the bounding fault zone where maximum subsidence occurs. The rift becomes a local baselevel and depocenter as regional drainage is shed away by the rift shoulders. Most of the sediments are derived locally due to internal drainage of connected basins, individual basins, and individual fault blocks. The patterns of sedimentation and facies associations depend on structural position at both fault block and half-graben scales. Drainage is directed and dammed by tilted fault blocks. Forward-tilted fault blocks form basinward-thickening sediment wedges filled with facies of axial fluvial systems, alluvial fault-scarp fans, and ponded swamp and lake deposits. These deposits are asymmetrically shifted toward the controlling fault and onlap the upthrown side of the block, ordinarily the site of erosion or nondeposition. Rivers entering the lake on back tilted fault blocks form large deltas resulting in basinward fining and thinning sediment wedges. Lacustrine, nearshore, shoreline, and lake shore plain deposits over multiple fault blocks record lake levels, water chemistry, and tectonic episodes. Tectonic movement periodically changes the basin depth, configuration, and baselevel. This movement results in widespread unconformities deposition and reworking of sediments within the rift.

  11. Structure of the southern Rio Grande rift from gravity interpretation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Daggett, P. H.; Keller, G. R.; Wen, C.-L.; Morgan, P.

    1986-05-01

    Regional Bouguer gravity anomalies in southern New Mexico have been analyzed by two-dimensional wave number filtering and poly-nomial trend surface analysis of the observed gravity field. A prominent, regional oval-shaped positive gravity anomaly was found to be associated with the southern Rio Grande rift. Computer modeling of three regional gravity profiles suggests that this anomaly is due to crustal thinning beneath the southern Rio Grande rift. These models indicate a 25 to 26-km minimum crustal thickness within the rift and suggest that the rift is underlain by a broad zone of anomalously low-density upper mantle. The southern terminus of the anomalous zone is approximately 50 km southwest of El Paso, Texas. A thinning of the rifted crust of 2-3 km relative to the adjacent Basin and Range province indicates an extension of about 9 percent during the formation of the modern southern Rio Grande rift. This extension estimate is consistent with estimates from other data sources. The crustal thinning and anomalous mantle is thought to result from magmatic activity related to surface volcanism and high heat flow in this area.

  12. Contribution of Transverse Structures, Magma, and Crustal Fluids to Continental Rift Evolution: The East African Rift in Southern Kenya

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kattenhorn, S. A.; Muirhead, J.; Dindi, E.; Fischer, T. P.; Lee, H.; Ebinger, C. J.

    2013-12-01

    The Magadi rift in southern Kenya formed at ~7 Ma within Proterozoic rocks of the Mozambique orogenic belt, parallel to its contact with the Archean Tanzania craton. The rift is bounded to the west by the ~1600-m-high Nguruman border fault. The rift center is intensely dissected by normal faults, most of which offset ~1.4-0.8 Ma lavas. Current E-W extensional velocities are ~2-4 mm/yr. Published crustal tomography models from the rift center show narrow high velocity zones in the upper crust, interpreted as cooled magma intrusions. Local, surface-wave, and SKS-splitting measurements show a rift-parallel anisotropy interpreted to be the result of aligned melt zones in the lithosphere. Our field observations suggest that recent fault activity is concentrated at the rift center, consistent with the location of the 1998 seismic swarm that was associated with an inferred diking event. Fault zones are pervasively mineralized by calcite, likely from CO2-rich fluids. A system of fault-fed springs provides the sole fluid input for Lake Magadi in the deepest part of the basin. Many of these springs emanate from the Kordjya fault, a 50-km-long, NW-SE striking, transverse structure connecting a portion of the border fault system (the NW-oriented Lengitoto fault) to the current locus of strain and magmatism at the rift center. Sampled springs are warm (44.4°C) and alkaline (pH=10). Dissolved gas data (mainly N2-Ar-He) suggests two-component mixing (mantle and air), possibly indicating that fluids are delivered into the fault zone from deep sources, consistent with a dominant role of magmatism to the focusing of strain at the rift center. The Kordjya fault has developed prominent fault scarps (~150 m high) despite being oblique to the dominant ~N-S fault fabric, and has utilized an en echelon alignment of N-S faults to accommodate its motion. These N-S faults show evidence of sinistral-oblique motion and imply a bookshelf style of faulting to accommodate dextral-oblique motion

  13. Magmatic expression of lithospheric thinning across continental rifts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thompson, R. N.; Gibson, S. A.

    1994-05-01

    Studies of magmatism associated with continental rifting have traditionally focused only on volcanism within the downfaulted axial zone and along its immediate flanks. Teleseismic travel-time delay studies during the last decade have confirmed the results of earlier gravity surveys of rifted areas, showing that thinning at the base of the continental lithosphere occurs throughout a zone up to about 10 times wider than the physiographic expression of the rift. It is, therefore, logical to consider rifting-related magmatism on the same scale. Potential sources of mafic magmas in rift zones are the thinned subcontinental lithospheric mantle (SCLM), the convecting mantle beneath the continental plate and mixtures of the two. Detailed elemental and radiogenic isotope geochemical studies show that, during the initial extension of continental rifts, the associated mafic magmatism tends to be: (1) relatively sodic and from predominantly convecting mantle sources at the rift axis; (2) relatively potassic and from predominantly lithospheric mantle sources at the margins of the thinned-plate zone. This underlying geochemical pattern is obscured in many instances by such processes as crustal contamination and magma mixing within open-system reservoirs. The mafic ultrapotassic component that provides a distinctive input to SCLM-source magmas appears to be largely fusible at temperatures well below the dry solidus of SCLM; so that, in some cases, prolonged magmatism at a site causes removal of most or all of the potassic lithosphere-source melt (as mafic ultrapotassic magmas or as a contribution to mixed-source melts) without destruction of that lithosphere segment as a geophysically defined unit. Such a zone of refractory lithosphere permits subsequent, recognisable, convecting mantle source melts to penetrate it and reach the surface. These principles are illustrated by discussion of the Neogene-Quaternary magmatism of the Rio Grande, East African, Rhine and Baikal rifts, in

  14. Sedimentation and reservoir distribution related to a tilted block system in the Sardinia Oligocene-Miocene rift (Italy)

    SciTech Connect

    Tremolieres, P.; Cherchi, A.; Eschard, R.; De Graciansky, P.C.; Montadert, L.

    1988-08-01

    In the western Mediterranean basin lies a rift system about 250 km long and 50 km wide and its infilling outcrop (central Sardinia). Seismic reflection surveys show its offshore extension. Block tilting started during the late Oligocene and lasted during Aquitanian-early Burdigalian time. Two main fault trends, with synthetic and antithetic throws, define the more-or-less collapsed blocks. This morphology guided the transit and trapping of sediments. The sedimentation started in a continental environment then, since the Chattian, in marine conditions. In the central part, the series can reach a thickness of 2,000 m. The basement composition and the volcanics products related to the main fault motion controlled the nature of the synrift deposits. According to their location in the rift context, the tilted blocks trap either continental deposits or marine siliciclastic or carbonate deposits. In the deeper part of the graben, sands were redeposited by gravity flows into the basinal marls. The younger prerift deposits are from Eocene to early Oligocene age and locally comprise thick coal layers. Postrift deposits, mainly marls, sealed the blocks and synrift sedimentary bodies. In middle and late Miocene time some faults were reactivated during compressional events. Then, a quaternary extensional phase created the Campidano graben, filled with about 1,000 m of sediments superimposed on the Oligocene-Miocene rift.

  15. Tectonic controls on rift basin morphology: Evolution of the northern Malawi (Nyasa) rift

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ebinger, C. J.; Deino, A. L.; Tesha, A. L.; Becker, T.; Ring, U.

    1993-01-01

    Radiometric (K-Ar and Ar-40/Ar-39) age determinations of volcanic and volcaniclastic rocks, combined with structural, gravity, and seismic reflection data, are used to constrain the age of sedimentary strata contained within the seismically and volcanically active northern Malawi (Nyasa) rift and to characterize changes in basin and flank morphologies with time. Faulting and volcanism within the Tukuyu-Karonga basin began at approximately 8.6 Ma, when sediments were deposited in abroad, initially asymmetric lake basin bounded on its northeastern side by a border fault system with minor topographic relief. Extensions, primarily by a slip along the border fault, and subsequent regional isostatic compensation led to the development of a 5-km-deep basin bounded by broad uplifted flanks. Along the low-relief basin margin opposite border fault, younger stratigraphic sequences commonly onlap older wedge-shaped sequences, although their internal geometry is often progradational. Intrabasinal faulting, flankuplift, and basaltic and felsic volcanism from centers at the northern end of the basin became more important at about 2.5 Ma when cross-rift transfer faults developed to link the Tukuyu-Karonga basin to the Rukwa basin. Local uplift and volcanic construction at the northern end of the basin led to a southeastward shift in the basin's depocenter. Sequence boundaries are commonly erosional along this low-relief (hanging wall) margin and conformable in the deep lake basin. The geometry of stratigraphic sequences and the distribution of the erosion indicate that horizontal and vertical crustal movements both across and along the length of the rift basin led to changes in levels of the lake, irrespective of paleoclimatic fluctuations.

  16. The onshore northeast Brazilian rift basins: An early Neocomian aborted rift system

    SciTech Connect

    Matos, R. )

    1990-05-01

    Early Cretaceous rift basins of northeastern Brazil illustrate key three-dimensional geometries of intracontinental rift systems, controlled mainly by the basement structures. These basins were formed and then abandoned during the early extension associated with the north-south-propagating separation of South America and Africa. During the early Neocomian, extensional deformation jumped from the easternmost basins (group 1: Sergipe Alagoas and Gabon basins; group 2: Reconcavo, Tucano, and Jatoba basins) to the west, forming a series of northeast-trending intracratonic basins (group 3: Araripe, Rio do Peixe, Iguatu, Malhada Vermelha, Lima Campos, and Potiguar basins). The intracratonic basins of groups 2 and 3 consist of asymmetric half-grabens separated by basement highs, transfer faults, and/or accommodation zones. These basins are typically a few tens of kilometers wide and trend northeast-southwest, roughly perpendicular to the main extension direction during the early Neocomian. Preexisting upper crustal weakness zones, like the dominantly northeast-southwest-trending shear zones of the Brazilian orogeny, controlled the development of intracrustal listric normal faults. Internal transverse structures such as transfer faults (Reconcavo basin and onshore Potiguar basin) and accommodation zones (onshore Potiguar basin and Araripe basin) were also controlled by the local basement structural framework. Transverse megafaults and lithostructural associations controlled the three main rift trends. The megashear zones of Pernanbuco (Brazil)-Ngaundere (Africa) apparently behaved like a huge accommodation zone, balancing extensional deformation along the Reconcavo-Jatoba/Sergipe Alagoas-Gabon trends with simultaneous extension along the Araripe-Potiguar trend. The Sergipe Alagoas-Gabon trend and the Potiguar basin represent the site of continued evolution into a marginal open basin following early Neocomian deformation.

  17. Geodynamic models of the Wilson Cycle: From rifts to mountains to rifts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buiter, Susanne; Tetreault, Joya; Torsvik, Trond

    2015-04-01

    The Wilson Cycle theory that oceans close and reopen along the former suture is a fundamental concept in plate tectonics. The theory suggests that subduction initiates at a passive margin, closing the ocean, and that future continental extension localises at the ensuing collision zone. Each stage of the Wilson Cycle will therefore be characterised by inherited structural and thermal heterogeneities. Here we investigate the role of Wilson Cycle inheritance by considering the influence of (1) passive margin structure on continental collision and (2) collision zones on passive margin formation. Passive margins may be preferred locations for subduction initiation because inherited faults and areas of exhumed serpentinized mantle may weaken a margin enough to localise shortening. If subduction initiates at a passive margin, the shape and structure of the passive margins will affect future continental collision. Our review of present-day passive margins along the Atlantic and Indian Oceans reveals that most passive margins are located on former collision zones. Continental break-up occurs on relatively young sutures, such as Morocco-Nova Scotia, and on very old sutures, such as the Greenland-Labrador and East Antarctica-Australia systems. This implies that it is not always post-collisional collapse that initiates the extensional phase of a Wilson Cycle. We highlight the impact of collision zone inheritance on continental extension and rifted margin architecture. We show numerical experiments of one Wilson Cycle of subduction, collision, and extension. Subduction initiates at a tapered passive margin. Closure of a 60 Ma ocean leads to continental collision and slab break-off, followed by some tens of kilometres of slab eduction. Mantle flow above the sinking detached slab enhances deformation in the rift area. The resulting rift exposes not only continental crust, but also subduction-related sediments and oceanic crust remnants. Renewed subduction in the post

  18. Rifting, Volcanism, and the Geochemical Character of the Mantle Beneath the West Antarctic Rift System (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mukasa, S. B.; Aviado, K. B.; Rilling-Hall, S.; Bryce, J. G.; Cabato, J.

    2013-12-01

    The West Antarctic Rift System (WARS) is one of the largest extensional alkali volcanic provinces on Earth, but the mechanisms responsible for generating the massive amounts of its associated magmatism remain controversial. The failure of both passive and active decompression melting models to adequately explain the observed lava volumes has prompted debate about the relative roles of thermal plume-related melting and ancient subduction-related flux melting. 40Ar/39Ar dating and geochemical analyses of the lavas, as well as volatile and trace-element determinations of olivine-hosted melt inclusions shed light on the relationship between rifting and volcanism, and also improve our understanding of the geochemical character of the mantle beneath the WARS. Results show that the magmatism post-dates the main phase of extension along the Terror Rift within the WARS, which supports a decompression-melting model without the benefit of a significant thermal anomaly. However, the observed large magma volumes seem to require a volatile-fluxed mantle, a notion supported by a long history of subduction (>500 Myr) along the paleo-Pacific margin of Gondwana. In fact, the legacy of that subduction may manifest itself in the high H2O concentrations of olivine-hosted melt inclusions (up to 3 wt% in preliminary results from ion probe measurements). The major oxide compositions of lavas in the WARS are best matched to experimental melts of garnet pyroxenite and carbonated peridotite sources. The Pb and Nd isotopic systems are decoupled from each other, suggesting removal of fluid-mobile elements from the mantle source possibly during the long history of subduction along this Gondwana margin. Extremely unradiogenic 187Os/188Os ranging to as low as 0.1081 × 0.0001 hints at the involvement of lithospheric components in generation of magmas in the WARS.

  19. Distribution of deformation on an active normal fault network, NW Corinth Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ford, Mary; Meyer, Nicolas; Boiselet, Aurélien; Lambotte, Sophie; Scotti, Oona; Lyon-Caen, Hélène; Briole, Pierre; Caumon, Guillaume; Bernard, Pascal

    2013-04-01

    Over the last 20-25 years, geodetic measurements across the Gulf of Corinth have recorded high extension rates varying from 1.1 cm/a in the east to a maximum of 1.6 cm/a in the west. Geodetic studies also show that current deformation is confined between two relatively rigid blocks defined as Central Greece (to the north) and the Peloponnesus to the south. Active north dipping faults (<1 Ma) define the south coast of the subsiding Gulf, while high seismicity (major earthquakes and micro-seismicity) is concentrated at depth below and to the north of the westernmost Gulf. How is this intense deformation distributed