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Sample records for pacific plate boundary

  1. Role of Transtension in Rifting at the Pacific-North America Plate Boundary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stock, J. M.

    2011-12-01

    Transtensional plate motion can be accommodated either in a localized zone of transtensional rifting or over a broader region. Broader zones of deformation can be classified either as diffuse deformation or strain partitioning (one or more major strike-slip shear zones geographically offset from a region of a extensional faulting). The Pacific-North America plate boundary in southwestern North America was transtensional during much of its history and has exhibited the full range of these behaviors at different spatial scales and in different locations, as recorded by fault motions and paleomagnetic rotations. Here we focus on the northern Gulf of California part of the plate boundary (Upper and Lower Delfin basin segments), which has been in a zone of transtensional Pacific-North America plate boundary motion ever since the middle Miocene demise of adjacent Farallon-derived microplates. Prior to the middle Miocene, during the time of microplate activity, this sector of North America experienced basin-and-range normal faults (core complexes) in Sonora. However there is no evidence of continued extensional faulting nor of a Gulf-related topographic depression until after ca 12 Ma when a major ignimbrite (Tuff of San Felipe/ Ignimbrite of Hermosillo) was deposited across the entire region of the future Gulf of California rift in this sector. After 12 Ma, faults disrupted this marker bed in eastern Baja California and western Sonora, and some major NNW-striking right-lateral faults are inferred to have developed near the Sonoran coast causing offset of some of the volcanic facies. However, there are major tectonic rotations of the volcanic rocks in NE Baja California between 12 and 6 Ma, suggesting that the plate boundary motion was still occurring over a broad region. By contrast, after about 6 Ma, diminished rotations in latest Miocene and Pliocene volcanic rocks, as well as fault slip histories, show that plate boundary deformation became localized to a narrower

  2. Deformation of the Pacific/North America plate boundary at Queen Charlotte Fault: The possible role of rheology

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    ten Brink, Uri S.; Miller, Nathaniel; Andrews, Brian; Brothers, Daniel; Haeussler, Peter J.

    2018-01-01

    The Pacific/North America (PA/NA) plate boundary between Vancouver Island and Alaska is similar to the PA/NA boundary in California in its kinematic history and the rate and azimuth of current relative motion, yet their deformation styles are distinct. The California plate boundary shows a broad zone of parallel strike slip and thrust faults and folds, whereas the 49‐mm/yr PA/NA relative plate motion in Canada and Alaska is centered on a single, narrow, continuous ~900‐km‐long fault, the Queen Charlotte Fault (QCF). Using gravity analysis, we propose that this plate boundary is centered on the continent/ocean boundary (COB), an unusual location for continental transform faults because plate boundaries typically localize within the continental lithosphere, which is weaker. Because the COB is a boundary between materials of contrasting elastic properties, once a fault is established there, it will probably remain stable. We propose that deformation progressively shifted to the COB in the wake of Yakutat terrane's northward motion along the margin. Minor convergence across the plate boundary is probably accommodated by fault reactivation on Pacific crust and by an eastward dipping QCF. Underthrusting of Pacific slab under Haida Gwaii occurs at convergence angles >14°–15° and may have been responsible for the emergence of the archipelago. The calculated slab entry dip (5°–8°) suggests that the slab probably does not extend into the asthenosphere. The PA/NA plate boundary at the QCF can serve as a structurally simple site to investigate the impact of rheology and composition on crustal deformation and the initiation of slab underthrusting.

  3. How do long-offset oceanic transforms adapt to plate motion changes? The example of the Western Pacific-Antarctic plate boundary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lodolo, Emanuele; Coren, Franco; Ben-Avraham, Zvi

    2013-03-01

    Oceanic transform faults respond to changes in the direction of relative plate motion. Studies have shown that short-offset transforms generally adjust with slight bends near the ridge axis, while long-offset ones have a remarkably different behavior. The western Pacific-Antarctic plate boundary highlights these differences. A set of previously unpublished seismic profiles, in combination with magnetic anomaly identifications, shows how across a former, ~1250 km long transform (the Emerald Fracture Zone), plate motion changes have produced a complex geometric readjustment. Three distinct sections are recognized along this plate boundary: an eastern section, characterized by parallel, multiple fault strand lineaments; a central section, shallower than the rest of the ridge system, overprinted by a mantle plume track; and a western section, organized in a cascade of short spreading axes/transform lineaments. This configuration was produced by changes that occurred since 30 Ma in the Australia-Pacific relative plate motion, combined with a gradual clockwise change in Pacific-Antarctic plate motion. These events caused extension along the former Emerald Fracture Zone, originally linking the Pacific-Antarctic spreading ridge system with the Southeast Indian ridge. Then an intra-transform propagating ridge started to develop in response to a ~6 Ma change in the Pacific-Antarctic spreading direction. The close proximity of the Euler poles of rotation amplified the effects of the geometric readjustments that occurred along the transform system. This analysis shows that when a long-offset transform older than 20 Ma is pulled apart by changes in spreading velocity vectors, it responds with the development of multiple discrete, parallel fault strands, whereas in younger lithosphere, locally modified by thermal anisotropies, tensional stresses generate an array of spreading axes offset by closely spaced transforms.

  4. North America-Pacific plate boundary, an elastic-plastic megashear - Evidence from very long baseline interferometry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ward, Steven N.

    1988-01-01

    Data obtained by Mark III VLBI measurements of radio signals from permanent and mobile VLBI sites for 5.5 years of observations, starting in October 1982, were used to derive a picture of the earth crust deformation near the North America-Pacific plate boundary. The data, which included the vector positions of the VLBI sites and their rate of change, were used for comparison with a number of lithospheric deformation models based upon the concept that the motions of points near the North America-Pacific plate boundary are a linear combination of North America and Pacific velocities. The best of these models were found to fit 95 percent of the variance in 139 VLBI length and transverse velocity observations. Instantaneous shear deformation associated with plate tectonics is apparently developing in a zone 450 km wide paralleling the San Andreas Fault; some of this deformation will be recovered through elastic rebound, while the rest will be permanently set through plastic processes. Because the VLBI data have not been collected for a significant fraction of the earthquake cycle, they cannot discriminate between elastic and plastic behaviors.

  5. Subcontinental-scale crustal velocity changes along the Pacific-North America plate boundary.

    PubMed

    Davis, J L; Wernicke, B P; Bisnath, S; Niemi, N A; Elósegui, P

    2006-06-29

    Transient tectonic deformation has long been noted within approximately 100 km of plate boundary fault zones and within active volcanic regions, but it is unknown whether transient motions also occur at larger scales within plates. Relatively localized transients are known to occur as both seismic and episodic aseismic events, and are generally ascribed to motions of magma bodies, aseismic creep on faults, or elastic or viscoelastic effects associated with earthquakes. However, triggering phenomena and systematic patterns of seismic strain release at subcontinental (approximately 1,000 km) scale along diffuse plate boundaries have long suggested that energy transfer occurs at larger scale. Such transfer appears to occur by the interaction of stresses induced by surface wave propagation and magma or groundwater in the crust, or from large-scale stress diffusion within the oceanic mantle in the decades following clusters of great earthquakes. Here we report geodetic evidence for a coherent, subcontinental-scale change in tectonic velocity along a diffuse approximately 1,000-km-wide deformation zone. Our observations are derived from continuous GPS (Global Positioning System) data collected over the past decade across the Basin and Range province, which absorbs approximately 25 per cent of Pacific-North America relative plate motion. The observed changes in site velocity define a sharp boundary near the centre of the province oriented roughly parallel to the north-northwest relative plate motion vector. We show that sites to the west of this boundary slowed relative to sites east of it by approximately 1 mm yr(-1) starting in late 1999.

  6. Identifying Fault Connections of the Southern Pacific-North American Plate Boundary Using Triggered Slip and Crustal Velocities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Donnellan, A.; Grant Ludwig, L.; Rundle, J. B.; Parker, J. W.; Granat, R.; Heflin, M. B.; Pierce, M. E.; Wang, J.; Gunson, M.; Lyzenga, G. A.

    2017-12-01

    The 2010 M7.2 El Mayor - Cucapah earthquake caused extensive triggering of slip on faults proximal to the Salton Trough in southern California. Triggered slip and postseismic motions that have continued for over five years following the earthquake highlight connections between the El Mayor - Cucapah rupture and the network of faults that branch out along the southern Pacific - North American Plate Boundary. Coseismic triggering follows a network of conjugate faults from the northern end of the rupture to the Coachella segment of the southernmost San Andreas fault. Larger aftershocks and postseismic motions favor connections to the San Jacinto and Elsinore faults further west. The 2012 Brawley Swarm can be considered part of the branching on the Imperial Valley or east side of the plate boundary. Cluster analysis of long-term GPS velocities using Lloyds Algorithm, identifies bifurcation of the Pacific - North American plate boundary; The San Jacinto fault joins with the southern San Andreas fault, and the Salton Trough and Coachella segment of the San Andreas fault join with the Eastern California Shear Zone. The clustering analysis does not identify throughgoing deformation connecting the Coachella segment of the San Andreas fault with the rest of the San Andreas fault system through the San Gorgonio Pass. This observation is consistent with triggered slip from both the 1992 Landers and 2010 El Mayor - Cucapah earthquakes that follows the plate boundary bifurcation and with paleoseismic evidence of smaller earthquakes in the San Gorgonio Pass.

  7. Tectonic Evolution of the Jurassic Pacific Plate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakanishi, M.; Ishihara, T.

    2015-12-01

    We present the tectonic evolution of the Jurassic Pacific plate based on magnetic anomly lineations and abyssal hills. The Pacific plate is the largest oceanic plate on Earth. It was born as a microplate aroud the Izanagi-Farallon-Phoenix triple junction about 192 Ma, Early Jurassic [Nakanishi et al., 1992]. The size of the Pacific plate at 190 Ma was nearly half that of the present Easter or Juan Fernandez microplates in the East Pacific Rise [Martinez et at, 1991; Larson et al., 1992]. The plate boundary surrounding the Pacific plate from Early Jurassic to Early Cretaceous involved the four triple junctions among Pacific, Izanagi, Farallon, and Phoenix plates. The major tectonic events as the formation of oceanic plateaus and microplates during the period occurred in the vicinity of the triple junctions [e.g., Nakanishi and Winterer, 1998; Nakanishi et al., 1999], implying that the study of the triple junctions is indispensable for understanding the tectonic evolution of the Pacific plate. Previous studies indicate instability of the configuration of the triple junctions from Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous (155-125 Ma). On the other hand, the age of the birth of the Pacific plate was determined assuming that all triple junctions had kept their configurations for about 30 m.y. [Nakanishi et al., 1992] because of insufficient information of the tectonic history of the Pacific plate before Late Jurassic.Increase in the bathymetric and geomagnetic data over the past two decades enables us to reveal the tectonic evolution of the Pacific-Izanagi-Farallon triple junction before Late Jurassic. Our detailed identication of magnetic anomaly lineations exposes magnetic bights before anomaly M25. We found the curved abyssal hills originated near the triple junction, which trend is parallel to magnetic anomaly lineations. These results imply that the configuration of the Pacific-Izanagi-Farallon triple junction had been RRR before Late Jurassic.

  8. Rayleigh phase velocities in the upper mantle of the Pacific-North American plate boundary in southern California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Escobar, L.; Weeraratne, D. S.; Kohler, M. D.

    2013-05-01

    The Pacific-North America plate boundary, located in Southern California, presents an opportunity to study a unique tectonic process that has been shaping the plate tectonic setting of the western North American and Mexican Pacific margin since the Miocene. This is one of the few locations where the interaction between a migrating oceanic spreading center and a subduction zone can be studied. The rapid subduction of the Farallon plate outpaced the spreading rate of the East Pacific Rise rift system causing it to be subducted beneath southern California and northern Mexico 30 Ma years ago. The details of microplate capture, reorganization, and lithospheric deformation on both the Pacific and North American side of this boundary is not well understood, but may have important implications for fault activity, stresses, and earthquake hazard analysis both onshore and offshore. We use Rayleigh waves recorded by an array of 34 ocean bottom seismometers deployed offshore southern California for a 12 month duration from August 2010 to 2011. Our array recorded teleseismic earthquakes at distances ranging from 30° to 120° with good signal-to-noise ratios for magnitudes Mw ≥ 5.9. The events exhibit good azimuthal distribution and enable us to solve simultaneously for Rayleigh wave phase velocities and azimuthal anisotropy. Fewer events occur at NE back-azimuths due to the lack of seismicity in central North America. We consider seismic periods between 18 - 90 seconds. The inversion technique considers non-great circle path propagation by representing the arriving wave field as two interfering plane waves. This takes advantage of statistical averaging of a large number of paths that travel offshore southern California and northern Mexico allowing for improved resolution and parameterization of lateral seismic velocity variations at lithospheric and sublithospheric depths. We present phase velocity results for periods sampling mantle structure down to 150 km depth along the

  9. Motion of the Rivera plate since 10 Ma relative to the Pacific and North American plates and the mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DeMets, Charles; Traylen, Stephen

    2000-03-01

    To better understand the influence of Rivera plate kinematics on the geodynamic evolution of western Mexico, we use more than 1400 crossings of seafloor spreading magnetic lineations along the Pacific-Rivera rise and northern Mathematician ridge to solve for rotations of the Rivera plate relative to the underlying mantle and the Pacific and North American plates at 14 times since 9.9 Ma. Our comparison of magnetic anomaly crossings from the undeformed Pacific plate to their counterparts on the Rivera plate indicates that significant areas of the Rivera plate have deformed since 9.9 Ma. Dextral shear along the southern edge of the plate from 3.3-2.2 Ma during a regional plate boundary reorganization deformed the Rivera plate farther into its interior than previously recognized. In addition, seafloor located north of two rupture zones within the Rivera plate sutured to North America after 1.5 Ma. Anomaly crossings from these two deformed regions thus cannot be used to reconstruct motion of the Rivera plate. Finite rotations that best reconstruct Pacific plate anomaly crossings onto their undeformed counterparts on the Rivera plate yield stage spreading rates that decrease gradually by 10% between 10 and 3.6 Ma, decrease rapidly by 20% after ˜3.6 Ma, and recover after 1 Ma. The slowdown in Pacific-Rivera seafloor spreading at 3.6 Ma coincided with the onset of dextral shear across the then-incipient southern boundary of the Rivera plate with the Pacific plate. The available evidence indicates that the Rivera plate has been an independent microplate since at least 10 Ma, contrary to published assertions that it fragmented from the Cocos plate at ˜5 Ma. Motion of the Rivera plate relative to North America has changed significantly since 10 Ma, in concert with significant changes in Pacific-Rivera motion. A significant and robust feature of Rivera-North America motion not previously recognized is the cessation of margin-normal convergence and thus subduction from 2

  10. How does the Pacific Plate die, and what dies with it?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gill, J.

    2002-12-01

    Investigation continues into the demise of the Pacific Plate by the subduction, which has been its principal driving force for about 50 m.y.. Key unanswered questions in the inquiry include the following. What was the motive for subduction to start? Where is the geochemical boundary between the Pacific and Indian Plates, and what is the reason for that difference in the first place? Why do marginal basins initiate above the subducting Pacific Plate, spread for 5-10 m.y., and then stop? How much and which parts of the Pacific Plate survive to an afterlife in the continents versus descent to Hades? Most of these questions reduce to: Why are the two largest islands in the Pacific Ocean (Hawaii and Viti Levu, Fiji) so different?

  11. On the Enigmatic Birth of the Pacific Plate within the Panthalassa Ocean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boschman, L.; Van Hinsbergen, D. J. J.

    2016-12-01

    The oceanic Pacific Plate started forming in Early Jurassic time within the vast Panthalassa Ocean that surrounded the supercontinent Pangea and contains the oldest lithosphere that can directly constrain the geodynamic history of the circum-Pangean Earth. Here, we show that the geometry of the oldest marine magnetic anomalies of the Pacific Plate attests of a unique plate kinematic event that sparked the plate's birth in virtually a point location, surrounded by the Izanagi, Farallon and Phoenix Plates. We reconstruct the unstable triple junction that caused the plate reorganization leading to the birth of the Pacific Plate and present a model of the plate tectonic configuration that preconditioned this event. We show that a stable, but migrating triple junction involving the gradual cessation of intra-oceanic Panthalassa subduction culminated in the formation of an unstable transform-transform-transform triple junction. The consequent plate boundary reorganization resulted in the formation of a stable triangular three-ridge system from which the nascent Pacific Plate expanded. We link the birth of the Pacific Plate to the regional termination of intra-Panthalassa subduction. Remnants thereof have been identified in the deep lower mantle of which the locations may provide paleolongitudinal control on the absolute location of the early Pacific Plate. Our results constitute an essential step in unraveling the plate tectonic evolution of `Thalassa Incognita' comprising the comprehensive Panthalassa Ocean surrounding Pangea.

  12. On the enigmatic birth of the Pacific Plate within the Panthalassa Ocean.

    PubMed

    Boschman, Lydian M; van Hinsbergen, Douwe J J

    2016-07-01

    The oceanic Pacific Plate started forming in Early Jurassic time within the vast Panthalassa Ocean that surrounded the supercontinent Pangea, and contains the oldest lithosphere that can directly constrain the geodynamic history of the circum-Pangean Earth. We show that the geometry of the oldest marine magnetic anomalies of the Pacific Plate attests to a unique plate kinematic event that sparked the plate's birth at virtually a point location, surrounded by the Izanagi, Farallon, and Phoenix Plates. We reconstruct the unstable triple junction that caused the plate reorganization, which led to the birth of the Pacific Plate, and present a model of the plate tectonic configuration that preconditioned this event. We show that a stable but migrating triple junction involving the gradual cessation of intraoceanic Panthalassa subduction culminated in the formation of an unstable transform-transform-transform triple junction. The consequent plate boundary reorganization resulted in the formation of a stable triangular three-ridge system from which the nascent Pacific Plate expanded. We link the birth of the Pacific Plate to the regional termination of intra-Panthalassa subduction. Remnants thereof have been identified in the deep lower mantle of which the locations may provide paleolongitudinal control on the absolute location of the early Pacific Plate. Our results constitute an essential step in unraveling the plate tectonic evolution of "Thalassa Incognita" that comprises the comprehensive Panthalassa Ocean surrounding Pangea.

  13. The Malpelo Plate Hypothesis and Implications for Non-closure of the Cocos-Nazca-Pacific Plate Motion Circuit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, T.; Gordon, R. G.; Mishra, J. K.; Wang, C.

    2017-12-01

    The non-closure of the Cocos-Nazca-Pacific plate motion circuit by 15.0 mm a-1± 3.8 mm a-1 (95% confidence limits throughout this abstract) [DeMets et al. 2010] represents a daunting challenge to the central tenet of plate tectonics—that the plates are rigid. This misfit is difficult to explain from known processes of intraplate deformation, such as horizontal thermal contraction [Collette, 1974; Kumar and Gordon, 2009; Kreemer and Gordon, 2014; Mishra and Gordon, 2016] or movement of plates over a non-spherical Earth [McKenzie, 1972; Turcotte and Oxburgh, 1973]. Possibly there are one or more unrecognized plate boundaries in the circuit, but no such boundary has been found to date. To make progress on this problem, we present three new Cocos-Nazca transform fault azimuths from multibeam data now available through Geomapapp's global multi-resolution topography [Ryan et al., 2009]. We determine a new Cocos-Nazca best-fitting angular velocity from the three new transform-fault azimuths combined with the spreading rates of DeMets et al. [2010]. The new direction of relative plate motion is 3.3° ±1.8° clockwise of prior estimates and is 4.9° ±2.7° clockwise of the azimuth of the Panama transform fault, demonstrating that the Panama transform fault does not parallel Nazca-Cocos plate motion. We infer that the plate east of the Panama transform fault is not the Nazca plate, but instead is a microplate that we term the Malpelo plate. We hypothesize that a diffuse plate boundary separates the Malpelo plate from the much larger Nazca plate. The Malpelo plate extends only as far north as ≈6°N where seismicity marks another boundary with a previously recognized microplate, the Coiba plate [Pennington, 1981, Adamek et al., 1988]. The Malpelo plate moves 5.9 mm a-1 relative to the Nazca plate along the Panama transform fault. When we sum the Cocos-Pacific and Pacific-Nazca best-fitting angular velocities of DeMets et al. [2010] with our new Nazca-Cocos best

  14. Trans-Pacific Bathymetry Survey crossing over the Pacific, Antarctic, and Nazca plates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abe, N.; Fujiwara, T.

    2013-12-01

    Multibeam bathymetric data reveals seafloor fabrics, i.e. abyssal hills and fracture zones, distribution of seamounts and/or knolls and are usually smaller than the detectable size by global prediction derived from satellite altimetry. The seafloor depths combined with shipboard gravity data indicate the structure of oceanic lithosphere, thermal state, and mantle dynamics and become more accurate data set to estimate fine-scale crustal structures and subsurface mass distribution. We present the ~22000 km long survey line from the northeast Japan through to the equator at the mid-Pacific on to the southwest Chilean coast collected during the JAMSTEC R/V Mirai MR08-06 Leg-1 cruise in January-March 2009. The cruise was as a part of SORA2009 (Abe, 2009 Cruise report) for geological and geophysical studies in the southern Pacific, and was an unprecedented opportunity to collect data in the regions of the Pacific Ocean where it has been sparsely surveyed using state-of-the-art echo-sounding technology. Our multibeam bathymetric and shipboard gravity survey track crossed over the Pacific, the Antarctic, and the Nazca plates, and covered lithospheric ages varying from zero to 150 Ma. Strikes of lineated abyssal hills give critical evidences for future studies of the plate reconstruction and tectonic evolution of the old Pacific Plate because magnetic lineations are unconstrained on the seafloor in the Cretaceous magnetic quiet (125-80 Ma) zone. Consecutive trends of lineated abyssal hills and fracture zones indicate stable tectonic stress field originated from the Pacific Antarctic Ridge (PAR) and the Chile Ridge spreading systems. The seafloor fabric morphology revealed a clear boundary between the PAR and the Chile Ridge domains. The observed bathymetric boundary is probably a part of a trace of the Pacific-Antarctic-Farallon (Nazca) plate's triple junction. The result will be constraint for future studies of the plate reconstruction and tectonic evolution of the PAR

  15. Thermochronology, Uplift and Erosion at the Australian-Pacific Plate Boundary Alpine Fault restraining bend, New Zealand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sagar, M. W.; Seward, D.; Norton, K. P.

    2016-12-01

    The 650 km-long Australian-Pacific plate boundary Alpine Fault is remarkably straight at a regional scale, except for a prominent S-shaped bend in the northern South Island. This is a restraining bend and has been referred to as the `Big Bend' due to similarities with the Transverse Ranges section of the San Andreas Fault. The Alpine Fault is the main source of seismic hazard in the South Island, yet there are no constraints on slip rates at the Big Bend. Furthermore, the timing of Big Bend development is poorly constrained to the Miocene. To address these issues we are using the fission-track (FT) and 40Ar/39Ar thermochronometers, together with basin-averaged cosmogenic nuclide 10Be concentrations to constrain the onset and rate of Neogene-Quaternary exhumation of the Australian and Pacific plates at the Big Bend. Exhumation rates at the Big Bend are expected to be greater than those for adjoining sections of the Alpine Fault due to locally enhanced shortening. Apatite FT ages and modelled thermal histories indicate that exhumation of the Australian Plate had begun by 13 Ma and 3 km of exhumation has occurred since that time, requiring a minimum exhumation rate of 0.2 mm/year. In contrast, on the Pacific Plate, zircon FT cooling ages suggest ≥7 km of exhumation in the past 2-3 Ma, corresponding to a minimum exhumation rate of 2 mm/year. Preliminary assessment of stream channel gradients either side of the Big Bend suggests equilibrium between uplift and erosion. The implication of this is that Quaternary erosion rates estimated from 10Be concentrations will approximate uplift rates. These uplift rates will help to better constrain the dip-slip rate of the Alpine Fault, which will allow the National Seismic Hazard Model to be updated.

  16. Extending Alaska's plate boundary: tectonic tremor generated by Yakutat subduction

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wech, Aaron G.

    2016-01-01

    The tectonics of the eastern end of the Alaska-Aleutian subduction zone are complicated by the inclusion of the Yakutat microplate, which is colliding into and subducting beneath continental North America at near-Pacific-plate rates. The interaction among these plates at depth is not well understood, and further east, even less is known about the plate boundary or the source of Wrangell volcanism. The drop-off in Wadati-Benioff zone (WBZ) seismicity could signal the end of the plate boundary, the start of aseismic subduction, or a tear in the downgoing plate. Further compounding the issue is the possible presence of the Wrangell slab, which is faintly outlined by an anemic, eastward-dipping WBZ beneath the Wrangell volcanoes. In this study, I performed a search for tectonic tremor to map slow, plate-boundary slip in south-central Alaska. I identified ∼11,000 tremor epicenters, which continue 85 km east of the inferred Pacific plate edge marked by WBZ seismicity. The tremor zone coincides with the edges of the downgoing Yakutat terrane, and tremors transition from periodic to continuous behavior as they near the aseismic Wrangell slab. I interpret tremor to mark slow, semicontinuous slip occurring at the interface between the Yakutat and North America plates. The slow slip region lengthens the megathrust interface beyond the WBZ and may provide evidence for a connection between the Yakutat slab and the aseismic Wrangell slab.

  17. Relative motions of the Australian, Pacific and Antarctic plates estimated by the Global Positioning System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Larson, Kristine M.; Freymueller, Jeff

    1995-01-01

    Global Positioning System (GPS) measurements spanning approximately 3 years have been used to determine velocities for 7 sites on the Australian, Pacific and Antarctic plates. The site velocities agree with both plate model predictions and other space geodetic techniques. We find no evidence for internal deformation of the interior of the Australian plate. Wellington, New Zealand, located in the Australian-Pacific plate boundary zone, moves 20 +/- 5 mm/yr west-southwest relative to the Australian plate. Its velocity lies midway between the predicted velocities of the two plates. Relative Euler vectors for the Australia-Antarctica and Pacific-Antarctica plates agree within one standard deviation with the NUVEL-1A predictions.

  18. On the enigmatic birth of the Pacific Plate within the Panthalassa Ocean

    PubMed Central

    Boschman, Lydian M.; van Hinsbergen, Douwe J. J.

    2016-01-01

    The oceanic Pacific Plate started forming in Early Jurassic time within the vast Panthalassa Ocean that surrounded the supercontinent Pangea, and contains the oldest lithosphere that can directly constrain the geodynamic history of the circum-Pangean Earth. We show that the geometry of the oldest marine magnetic anomalies of the Pacific Plate attests to a unique plate kinematic event that sparked the plate’s birth at virtually a point location, surrounded by the Izanagi, Farallon, and Phoenix Plates. We reconstruct the unstable triple junction that caused the plate reorganization, which led to the birth of the Pacific Plate, and present a model of the plate tectonic configuration that preconditioned this event. We show that a stable but migrating triple junction involving the gradual cessation of intraoceanic Panthalassa subduction culminated in the formation of an unstable transform-transform-transform triple junction. The consequent plate boundary reorganization resulted in the formation of a stable triangular three-ridge system from which the nascent Pacific Plate expanded. We link the birth of the Pacific Plate to the regional termination of intra-Panthalassa subduction. Remnants thereof have been identified in the deep lower mantle of which the locations may provide paleolongitudinal control on the absolute location of the early Pacific Plate. Our results constitute an essential step in unraveling the plate tectonic evolution of “Thalassa Incognita” that comprises the comprehensive Panthalassa Ocean surrounding Pangea. PMID:29713683

  19. Origin of methane-rich natural gas at the West Pacific convergent plate boundary.

    PubMed

    Sano, Yuji; Kinoshita, Naoya; Kagoshima, Takanori; Takahata, Naoto; Sakata, Susumu; Toki, Tomohiro; Kawagucci, Shinsuke; Waseda, Amane; Lan, Tefang; Wen, Hsinyi; Chen, Ai-Ti; Lee, Hsiaofen; Yang, Tsanyao F; Zheng, Guodong; Tomonaga, Yama; Roulleau, Emilie; Pinti, Daniele L

    2017-11-15

    Methane emission from the geosphere is generally characterized by a radiocarbon-free signature and might preserve information on the deep carbon cycle on Earth. Here we report a clear relationship between the origin of methane-rich natural gases and the geodynamic setting of the West Pacific convergent plate boundary. Natural gases in the frontal arc basin (South Kanto gas fields, Northeast Japan) show a typical microbial signature with light carbon isotopes, high CH 4 /C 2 H 6 and CH 4 / 3 He ratios. In the Akita-Niigata region - which corresponds to the slope stretching from the volcanic-arc to the back-arc -a thermogenic signature characterize the gases, with prevalence of heavy carbon isotopes, low CH 4 /C 2 H 6 and CH 4 / 3 He ratios. Natural gases from mud volcanoes in South Taiwan at the collision zone show heavy carbon isotopes, middle CH 4 /C 2 H 6 ratios and low CH 4 / 3 He ratios. On the other hand, those from the Tokara Islands situated on the volcanic front of Southwest Japan show the heaviest carbon isotopes, middle CH 4 /C 2 H 6 ratios and the lowest CH 4 / 3 He ratios. The observed geochemical signatures of natural gases are clearly explained by a mixing of microbial, thermogenic and abiotic methane. An increasing contribution of abiotic methane towards more tectonically active regions of the plate boundary is suggested.

  20. Pacific-North America plate boundary reorganization in response to a change in relative plate motion: Offshore Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rohr, K. M. M.; Tryon, A. J.

    2010-06-01

    The transition from subduction in Cascadia to the transform Queen Charlotte fault along western Canada is often drawn as a subduction zone, yet recent studies of GPS and earthquake data from northern Vancouver Island are not consistent with that model. In this paper we synthesize seismic reflection and gravity interpretations with microseismicity data in order to test models of (1) microplate subduction and (2) reorganization of the preexisting strike-slip plate boundary. We focus on the critical region of outer Queen Charlotte Sound and the adjacent offshore. On much of the continental shelf, several million years of subsidence above thin crust are a counterindicator for subduction. An undated episode of compression uplifted the southernmost shelf, but subsidence patterns offshore show that recent subduction is unlikely to be responsible. Previously unremarked near-vertical faults and a mix of extensional and compressional faults offshore indicate that strike-slip faulting has been a significant mode of deformation. Seismicity in the last 18 years is dominantly strike-slip and shows large amounts of moment release on the Revere-Dellwood fault and its overlap with the Queen Charlotte fault. The relative plate motion between the Pacific and North American plates rotated clockwise ˜6 Ma and appears to have triggered formation of an evolving array of structures. We suggest that the paleo-Queen Charlotte fault which had defined this continental margin retreated northward as offshore distributed shear and the newly formed Revere Dellwood fault propagated to the northwest.

  1. An updated digital model of plate boundaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bird, Peter

    2003-03-01

    A global set of present plate boundaries on the Earth is presented in digital form. Most come from sources in the literature. A few boundaries are newly interpreted from topography, volcanism, and/or seismicity, taking into account relative plate velocities from magnetic anomalies, moment tensor solutions, and/or geodesy. In addition to the 14 large plates whose motion was described by the NUVEL-1A poles (Africa, Antarctica, Arabia, Australia, Caribbean, Cocos, Eurasia, India, Juan de Fuca, Nazca, North America, Pacific, Philippine Sea, South America), model PB2002 includes 38 small plates (Okhotsk, Amur, Yangtze, Okinawa, Sunda, Burma, Molucca Sea, Banda Sea, Timor, Birds Head, Maoke, Caroline, Mariana, North Bismarck, Manus, South Bismarck, Solomon Sea, Woodlark, New Hebrides, Conway Reef, Balmoral Reef, Futuna, Niuafo'ou, Tonga, Kermadec, Rivera, Galapagos, Easter, Juan Fernandez, Panama, North Andes, Altiplano, Shetland, Scotia, Sandwich, Aegean Sea, Anatolia, Somalia), for a total of 52 plates. No attempt is made to divide the Alps-Persia-Tibet mountain belt, the Philippine Islands, the Peruvian Andes, the Sierras Pampeanas, or the California-Nevada zone of dextral transtension into plates; instead, they are designated as "orogens" in which this plate model is not expected to be accurate. The cumulative-number/area distribution for this model follows a power law for plates with areas between 0.002 and 1 steradian. Departure from this scaling at the small-plate end suggests that future work is very likely to define more very small plates within the orogens. The model is presented in four digital files: a set of plate boundary segments; a set of plate outlines; a set of outlines of the orogens; and a table of characteristics of each digitization step along plate boundaries, including estimated relative velocity vector and classification into one of 7 types (continental convergence zone, continental transform fault, continental rift, oceanic spreading ridge

  2. Thermochronology of mid-Cretaceous dioritic granulites adjacent "Big Bend" in Australia-Pacific plate boundary, northern South Island, New Zealand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sagar, M.; Seward, D.; Heizler, M. T.; Palin, J. M.; Toy, V. G.; Tulloch, A. J.

    2012-12-01

    The Western Fiordland Orthogneiss (WFO), situated south-east of the Australian-Pacific plate boundary (Alpine Fault), southern South Island, New Zealand is the largest suite of plutonic rocks intruded into the Pacific margin of Gondwana during the final stages of arc plutonism preceding break-up of the supercontinent in the Late Cretaceous. Dextral motion of c. 480 km along the Alpine Fault during the Cenozoic has offset originally contiguous Pacific Gondwana margin rocks in northern and southern South Island. The Glenroy Complex in northern South Island, west of the Alpine Fault is dominated by two-pyroxene+hornblende granulite facies monzodioritic gneisses. U-Pb zircon geochronological and geochemical data indicate the Glenroy Complex was emplaced between 128-122 Ma and is a correlative of the WFO. The Glenroy Complex forms the lower-most block bounded by an east-dipping set of imbricate thrusts that developed during the late Cenozoic to the west of the largest S-shaped restraining bend ("Big Bend") in the Alpine Fault. New 40Ar/39Ar and fission-track thermochronological data, combined with previous geological field-mapping, demonstrate that the Glenroy Complex cooled rapidly (c. 30° C/Ma) after emplacement and granulite facies metamorphism (c. 850°C) at c. 120 Ma, through c. 550 °C by c. 110-100 Ma. The average cooling rate during the Late Cretaceous-Cenozoic was relatively slow, and initial exposure in the late Early Miocene (c. 16 Ma) was followed by reburial to c. 3-4 km (c. 80-100 °C) before final exhumation post-Pliocene. This thermal history is similar to the WFO, which cooled rapidly through c. 350 °C during mid-Cretaceous continental extension, followed by slow cooling during the Late Cretaceous and Cenozoic until development of the Australian-Pacific boundary through New Zealand facilitated rapid, exhumation-related cooling from c. 240 °C at c. 20 Ma and final exhumation post-10 Ma (Davids, 1999). However, the Glenroy Complex cooled at a faster

  3. The Malpelo Plate Hypothesis and implications for nonclosure of the Cocos-Nazca-Pacific plate motion circuit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Tuo; Gordon, Richard G.; Mishra, Jay K.; Wang, Chengzu

    2017-08-01

    Using global multiresolution topography, we estimate new transform-fault azimuths along the Cocos-Nazca plate boundary and show that the direction of relative plate motion is 3.3° ± 1.8° (95% confidence limits) clockwise of prior estimates. The new direction of Cocos-Nazca plate motion is, moreover, 4.9° ± 2.7° (95% confidence limits) clockwise of the azimuth of the Panama transform fault. We infer that the plate east of the Panama transform fault is not the Nazca plate but instead is a microplate that we term the Malpelo plate. With the improved transform-fault data, the nonclosure of the Nazca-Cocos-Pacific plate motion circuit is reduced from 15.0 mm a-1 ± 3.8 mm a-1 to 11.6 mm a-1 ± 3.8 mm a-1 (95% confidence limits). The nonclosure seems too large to be due entirely to horizontal thermal contraction of oceanic lithosphere and suggests that one or more additional plate boundaries remain to be discovered.

  4. Using Global, Quantitative Models of the Coupled Plates/Mantle System to Understand Late Neogene Dynamics of the Pacific Plate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stotz, I.; Davies, R.; Iaffaldano, G.

    2016-12-01

    the evolving mantle buoyancy-field and plate-boundary forces on the Pacific plate motion. Our approach allows distinguishing between the top-down and bottom-up controls on the recent dynamics of the Pacific plate.

  5. Using global, quantitative models of the coupled plates/mantle system to understand Late Miocene dynamics of the Pacific plate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stotz, Ingo; Iaffaldano, Giampiero; Rhodri Davies, D.

    2017-04-01

    the evolving mantle buoyancy-field and plate-boundary forces on the Pacific plate motion. Our approach allows linking geodynamical models and observations on the recent dynamics of the Pacific plate.

  6. Anomalous Late Jurassic motion of the Pacific Plate with implications for true polar wander

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fu, R. R.; Kent, D.

    2017-12-01

    True polar wander, or TPW, is the rotation of the entire mantle-crust system that results in simultaneous change in latitude and orientation for all lithospheric plates. One of the most recent candidate TPW events consists of a 30˚ rotation during Late Jurassic time (160 - 145 Ma). However, existing paleomagnetic documentation of this event derives exclusively from continental studies. Because all major landmasses except China were connected directly or via spreading centers in the Late Jurassic, the velocities of these continents were mutually constrained and their motion as a group over the underlying mantle would be indistinguishable from TPW using only continental data. On the other hand, plates of the Pacific Basin constituted a kinematically independent domain, interfacing with continents at subduction zones and slip-strike boundaries. Coherent motion of both Pacific Basin and continental plates would therefore indicate uniform motion of virtually the entire lithosphere, providing a means to distinguish TPW from continental drift. We performed thermal demagnetization on remaining samples from Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Site 801B, which were cored from the oldest sampled oceanic crust in the Western Pacific, to determine its change in paleolatitude during the Late Jurassic and Early Cretaceous (167 - 134 Ma). We find that the Pacific Plate likely underwent a steady southward drift during this time period, consistent with previous results from magnetic anomalies, except for an episode of northward motion between Oxfordian and Tithonian time (161 - 147 Ma). Although the amplitude of this northward shift is subject to significant uncertainty due to the sparse recovery of core samples, the trajectory of the Pacific Plate is most simply explained by TPW in the 160 - 145 Ma interval as inferred from continental data. Furthermore, such an interpretation is consistent with the sense of shear inferred at the Farallon-North American Plate boundary, whereas uniform

  7. Repeating Earthquakes on the Queen Charlotte Plate Boundary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hayward, T. W.; Bostock, M. G.

    2015-12-01

    The Queen Charlotte Fault (QCF) is a major plate boundary located off the northwest coast of North America that has produced large earthquakes in 1949 (M8.1) and more recently in October, 2012 (M7.8). The 2012 event was dominated by thrusting despite the fact that plate motions at the boundary are nearly transcurrent. It is now widely believed that the plate boundary comprises the QCF (i.e., a dextral strike-slip fault) as well as an element of subduction of the Pacific Plate beneath the North American Plate. Repeating earthquakes and seismic tremor have been observed in the vicinity of the QCF; providing insight into the spatial and temporal characteristics of repeating earthquakes is the goal of this research. Due to poor station coverage and data quality, traditional methods of locating earthquakes are not applicable to these events. Instead, we have implemented an algorithm to locate local (i.e., < 100 km distance to epicenter) earthquakes using a single, three-component seismogram. This algorithm relies on the P-wave polarization and, through comparison with larger local events in the Geological Survey of Canada catalogue, is shown to yield epicentral locations accurate to within 5-10 km. A total of 24 unique families of repeating earthquakes has been identified, and 4 of these families have been located with high confidence. Their epicenters locate directly on the trace of the QCF and their depths are shallow (i.e., 5-15 km), consistent with the proposed depth of the QCF. Analysis of temporal recurrence leading up to the 2012 M7.8 event reveals a non-random pattern, with an approximately 15 day periodicity. Further analysis is planned to study whether this behaviour persists after the 2012 event and to gain insight into the effects of the 2012 event on the stress field and frictional properties of the plate boundary.

  8. Block structure and geodynamics of the continental lithosphere on plate boundaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gatinsky, Yu. G.; Prokhorova, T. V.; Romanyuk, T. V.; Vladova, G. L.

    2009-04-01

    Division of the Earth lithosphere on large plates must be considered only as the first and most general approximation in its structure hierarchy. Some transit zones or difuuse boundaries after other authors take place in lithosphere plate boundaries. The tectonic tension of plate interaction is transferred and relaxed within these zones, which consist of blocks limited by seismoactive faults. Vectors of block horizontal displacements often don't coincide with vectors of main plates and change together with changing block rigidity. As a rule the intensity the seismic energy at plate and transit zone boundaries decreases linearly with distancing from these boundaries and correlates with decreasing of velocities of block horizontal displacements. But sometimes the maximum of the energy manifestation takes place in inner parts of transit zones. Some relatively tight interblock zones established in central and east Asia are the most seismically active. They limited such blocks as Pamir, Tien Shan, Bayanhar, Shan, Japanese-Korean, as well as the north boundary of the Indian Plate. A seismic energy intensity of these zones can be compared with the energy of Pacific subduction zones. It is worthy to note that the majority catastrophic earthquakes took place in Central Asia just within interblock zones. A level of block displacement is situated mainly in the bottom or inside the Earth crust, more rare in the lithosphere mantle. Blocks with the most thick lithosphere roots (SE China, Amurian) are the most rigid and weakly deformed.

  9. The Fairway-Aotea Basin and the New Caledonia Trough, witnesses of the Pacific-Australian plate boundary evolution : from mid-Cretaceous cessation of subduction to Eocene subduction renewal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Collot, J.; Geli, L. B.; Lafoy, Y.; Sutherland, R.; Herzer, R. H.; Roest, W. R.

    2009-12-01

    The geodynamical history of the SW Pacific is controlled since the Mesozoic by the evolution of peri-Pacific subduction zones, in a trench retreat by slab roll-back process, which successively occurred along the Eastern Gondwana margin. In this context, most basins which formed after 45 Ma reached a stage of seafloor spreading, have recorded the inversions of the earth's magnetic field and present typical oceanic crust morphologies. By contrast, the New Caledonia and Fairway basins, which are narrower and present thick sedimentary covers have a less known and more controversial origin. Based on a regional geological synthesis and on interpretation of multichannel seismic reflection and refraction data, combined with drill hole data off New Zealand and a compilation of regional potential data, we distinguish 2 phases of the evolution of the Fairway-Aotea Basin (FAB) and the New Caledonia Trough (NCT), which reflect the evolution of the Gondwana-Pacific plate boundary: Phase 1: Mid Cretaceous formation of the FAB in a continental intra- or back- arc position of the Pacific-Gondwana subduction system. The formation of this shallow basin reflects the onset of continental breakup of the Eastern Gondwana margin during Cenomanian which was most probably caused by a dynamic change of the subduction zone through a « verticalization » of the slab. This event may be the result of the 99 Ma kinematic plate reorganization which probably led to subduction cessation along the Gondwana-Pacific plate boundary. A tectonic escape mechanism, in relation with the locking of the subduction zone by the Hikurangi Plateau, could also be responsible of the trench retreat leading to backarc extension. Phase 2: Regional Eocene-Oligocene uplift followed by rapid subsidence (3-4 km) of the system « Lord Howe Rise - FAB - Norfolk Ridge ». The structural style of this deformation leads us to suggest that detachment of the lower crust is the cause of subsidence. We therefore propose a model in

  10. Lithospheric strength in the active boundary between the Pacific Plate and Baja California microplate constrained from lower crustal and upper mantle xenoliths

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chatzaras, Vasileios; van der Werf, Thomas; Kriegsman, Leo M.; Kronenberg, Andreas; Tikoff, Basil; Drury, Martyn R.

    2017-04-01

    The lower crust is the most poorly understood of the lithospheric layers in terms of its rheology, particularly at active plate boundaries. We studied naturally deformed lower crustal xenoliths within an active plate boundary, in order to link their microstructures and rheological parameters to the well-defined active tectonic context. The Baja California shear zone (BCSZ), located at the western boundary of the Baja California microplate, comprises the active boundary accommodating the relative motion between the Pacific plate and Baja California microplate. The basalts of the Holocene San Quintin volcanic field carry lower crustal and upper mantle xenoliths, which sample the Baja California microplate lithosphere in the vicinity of the BCSZ. The lower crustal xenoliths range from undeformed gabbros to granoblastic two-pyroxene granulites. Two-pyroxene geothermometry shows that the granulites equilibrated at temperatures of 690-920 oC. Phase equilibria (P-T pseudosections using Perple_X) indicate that symplectites with intergrown pyroxenes, plagioclase, olivine and spinel formed at 3.6-5.4 kbar, following decompression from pressures exceeding 6 kbar. FTIR spectroscopy shows that the water content of plagioclase varies among the analyzed xenoliths; plagioclase is relatively dry in two xenoliths while one xenolith contains hydrated plagioclase grains. Microstructural observations and analysis of the crystallographic texture provide evidence for deformation of plagioclase by a combination of dislocation creep and grain boundary sliding. To constrain the strength of the lower crust and upper mantle near the BCSZ we estimated the differential stress using plagioclase and olivine grain size paleopiezomtery, respectively. Differential stress estimates for plagioclase range from 10 to 32 MPa and for olivine are 30 MPa. Thus the active microplate boundary records elevated crustal temperatures, heterogeneous levels of hydration, and low strength in both the lower crust and

  11. Upper-Mantel Earthquakes in the Australia-Pacific Plate Boundary Zone and the Roots of the Alpine Fault

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boese, C. M.; Warren-Smith, E.; Townend, J.; Stern, T. A.; Lamb, S. H.

    2016-12-01

    Seismicity in the upper mantle in continental collision zones is relatively rare, but observed around the world. Temporary seismometer deployments have repeatedly detected mantle earthquakes at depths of 40-100 km within the Australia-Pacific plate boundary zone beneath the South Island of New Zealand. Here, the transpressive Alpine Fault constitutes the primary plate boundary structure linking subduction zones of opposite polarity farther north and south. The Southern Alps Microearthquake Borehole Array (SAMBA) has been operating continuously since November 2008 along a 50 km-long section of the central Alpine Fault, where the rate of uplift of the Southern Alps is highest. To date it has detected more than 40 small to moderate-sized mantle events (1≤ML≤3.9). The Central Otago Seismic Array (COSA) has been in operation since late 2012 and detected 15 upper mantle events along the sub-vertical southern Alpine Fault. Various mechanisms have been proposed to explain the occurrence of upper mantle seismicity in the South Island, including intra-continental subduction (Reyners 1987, Geology); high shear-strain gradients due to depressed geotherms and viscous deformation of mantle lithosphere (Kohler and Eberhart-Phillips 2003, BSSA); high strain rates resulting from plate bending (Boese et al. 2013, EPSL), and underthrusting of the Australian plate (Lamb et al. 2015, G3). Focal mechanism analysis reveals a variety of mechanisms for the upper mantle events but predominantly strike-slip and reverse faulting. In this study, we apply spectral analysis to better constrain source parameters for these mantle events. These results are interpreted in conjunction with new information about crustal structure and low-frequency earthquakes near the Moho and in light of existing velocity, attenuation and resistivity models.

  12. The Baja California Borderland and the Neogene Evolution of the Pacific-North American Plate Boundary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fletcher, J. M.; Eakins, B. W.

    2001-12-01

    New observational data on Neogene faulting in the borderland of Baja California places important constraints on tectonic models for the evolution of the Pacific-North American (P-NA) plate boundary and rifting in the Gulf of California. Neogene faults in the borderland range from strike slip to normal slip and accommodate integrated transtension. Most have east-facing escarpments and likely reactivate the former east-dipping accretionary complex. Numerous lines of evidence indicate that Neogene faults are still active and accomplish a significant component ( ~1-5 mm/yr) of Pacific-North American shearing. Quaternary volcanoes are found offshore and along the Pacific coastal margin, Quaternary marine terraces are warped and uplifted as high as 200 masl. Many of the offshore faults have fresh escarpments and cut Holocene sediments. Extensive arrays of Quaternary fault scarps are found throughout the coastal region and in Bahia Magdalena they are clearly associated with major faults that bound recently uplifted islands. A prominent band of seismicity follows the coast and eight earthquakes (Ms>5.0) were teleseismically recorded between 1973 and 1998. This evidence for active shearing indicates that the Baja microplate has not yet been completely transferred to the Pacific plate. The best lithologic correlation that can be used to define the total Neogene slip across the borderland faults is the offset between the Magdalena submarine fan and its Baja source terrane. The distal facies of the fan drilled during DSDP leg 63 is dominated by mudstone and siltstone that contain reworked Paleogene cocoliths derived from strata correlative with the Tepetate formation found throughout the borderland and fine-grained sandstone derived from a source terrane of granitoid basement. The Middle Miocene La Calera formation of the Cabo trough is one of many granitoid-clast syn-rift alluvial deposits that could form the continental counterpart of the submarine fan near the mouth of the

  13. Introduction to the special issue on the 2012 Haida Gwaii and 2013 Craig earthquakes at the Pacific–North America plate boundary (British Columbia and Alaska)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    James, Thomas S.; Cassidy, John F.; Rogers, Garry C.; Haeussler, Peter J.

    2015-01-01

    The 27 October 2012 Mw 7.8 Haida Gwaii thrust earthquake and the 5 January 2013 Mw 7.5 Craig strike‐slip earthquake are the focus of this special issue. They occurred along the transform boundary between the Pacific and North American plates (Fig. 1). The most identifiable feature of the plate boundary, the strike‐slip Queen Charlotte fault, might be viewed as typical of continent–ocean transform faults because it separates the continental crust of the North American plate from oceanic crust of the Pacific plate for most of its length. However, the current relative plate motion of about 5  cm/yr is highly oblique to the Queen Charlotte fault, causing a transpressive plate boundary in the region.

  14. The 2011 Tohoku-oki Earthquake related to a large velocity gradient within the Pacific plate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matsubara, Makoto; Obara, Kazushige

    2015-04-01

    We conduct seismic tomography using arrival time data picked by the high sensitivity seismograph network (Hi-net) operated by National Research Institute for Earth Science and Disaster Prevention (NIED). We used earthquakes off the coast outside the seismic network around the source region of the 2011 Tohoku-oki Earthquake with the centroid depth estimated from moment tensor inversion by NIED F-net (broadband seismograph network) as well as earthquakes within the seismic network determined by Hi-net. The target region, 20-48N and 120-148E, covers the Japanese Islands from Hokkaido to Okinawa. A total of manually picked 4,622,346 P-wave and 3,062,846 S-wave arrival times for 100,733 earthquakes recorded at 1,212 stations from October 2000 to August 2009 is available for use in the tomographic method. In the final iteration, we estimate the P-wave slowness at 458,234 nodes and the S-wave slowness at 347,037 nodes. The inversion reduces the root mean square of the P-wave traveltime residual from 0.455 s to 0.187 s and that of the S-wave data from 0.692 s to 0.228 s after eight iterations (Matsubara and Obara, 2011). Centroid depths are determined using a Green's function approach (Okada et al., 2004) such as in NIED F-net. For the events distant from the seismic network, the centroid depth is more reliable than that determined by NIED Hi-net, since there are no stations above the hypocenter. We determine the upper boundary of the Pacific plate based on the velocity structure and earthquake hypocentral distribution. The upper boundary of the low-velocity (low-V) oceanic crust corresponds to the plate boundary where thrust earthquakes are expected to occur. Where we do not observe low-V oceanic crust, we determine the upper boundary of the upper layer of the double seismic zone within high-V Pacific plate. We assume the depth at the Japan Trench as 7 km. We can investigate the velocity structure within the Pacific plate such as 10 km beneath the plate boundary since the

  15. Stress rotation across the Cascadia megathrust requires a weak subduction plate boundary at seismogenic depths

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Duo; McGuire, Jeffrey J.; Liu, Yajing; Hardebeck, Jeanne L.

    2018-03-01

    The Mendocino Triple Junction region is the most seismically active part of the Cascadia Subduction Zone. The northward moving Pacific plate collides with the subducting Gorda plate causing intense internal deformation within it. Here we show that the stress field rotates rapidly with depth across the thrust interface from a strike-slip regime within the subducting plate, reflecting the Pacific plate collision, to a thrust regime in the overriding plate. We utilize a dense focal mechanism dataset, including observations from the Cascadia Initiative ocean bottom seismograph experiment, to constrain the stress orientations. To quantify the implications of this rotation for the strength of the plate boundary, we designed an inversion that solves for the absolute stress tensors in a three-layer model subject to assumptions about the strength of the subducting mantle. Our results indicate that the shear stress on the plate boundary fault is likely no more than about ∼50 MPa at ∼20 km depth. Regardless of the assumed mantle strength, we infer a relatively weak megathrust fault with an effective friction coefficient of ∼0 to 0.2 at seismogenic depths. Such a low value for the effective friction coefficient requires a combination of high fluid pressures and/or fault-zone minerals with low inherent friction in the region where a great earthquake is expected in Cascadia.

  16. Stress rotation across the Cascadia megathrust requires a weak subduction plate boundary at seismogenic depths

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Li, Duo; McGuire, Jeffrey J.; Liu, Yajing; Hardebeck, Jeanne L.

    2018-01-01

    The Mendocino Triple Junction region is the most seismically active part of the Cascadia Subduction Zone. The northward moving Pacific plate collides with the subducting Gorda plate causing intense internal deformation within it. Here we show that the stress field rotates rapidly with depth across the thrust interface from a strike-slip regime within the subducting plate, reflecting the Pacific plate collision, to a thrust regime in the overriding plate. We utilize a dense focal mechanism dataset, including observations from the Cascadia Initiative ocean bottom seismograph experiment, to constrain the stress orientations. To quantify the implications of this rotation for the strength of the plate boundary, we designed an inversion that solves for the absolute stress tensors in a three-layer model subject to assumptions about the strength of the subducting mantle. Our results indicate that the shear stress on the plate boundary fault is likely no more than about ∼50 MPa at ∼20 km depth. Regardless of the assumed mantle strength, we infer a relatively weak megathrust fault with an effective friction coefficient of ∼0 to 0.2 at seismogenic depths. Such a low value for the effective friction coefficient requires a combination of high fluid pressures and/or fault-zone minerals with low inherent friction in the region where a great earthquake is expected in Cascadia.

  17. Reconstruction of Northeast Asian Deformation Integrated with Western Pacific Plate Subduction since 200 Ma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, S.; Gurnis, M.; Ma, P.; Zhang, B.

    2017-12-01

    The configuration and kinematics of continental deformation and its marginal plate tectonics on the Earth's surface are intrinsic manifestations of plate-mantle coupling. The complex interactions of plate boundary forces result in plate motions that are dominated by slab pull and ridge push forces and the effects of mantle drag; these interactions also result in continental deformation with a complex basin-mountain architecture and evolution. The kinematics and evolution of the western Pacific subduction and northeast Asian continental-margin deformation are a first-order tectonic process whose nature and chronology remains controversial. This paper implements a "deep-time" reconstruction of the western Pacific subduction, continental accretion or collision and basin-mountain deformation in northeast Asia since 200 Ma based on a newly revised global plate model. The results demonstrate a NW-SE-oriented shortening from 200-137 Ma, a NWW-SEE-oriented extension from 136-101 Ma, a nearly N-S-oriented extension and uplift with a short-term NWW-SEE-oriented compressional inversion in northeast China from 100-67 Ma, and a NW-SE- and nearly N-S-oriented extension from 66 Ma to the present day. The western Pacific oceanic plate subducted forward under East Asia along Mudanjiang-Honshu Island during the Jurassic, and the trenches retreated to the Sikhote-Alin, North Shimanto, and South Shimanto zones from ca. 137-128 Ma, ca. 130-90 Ma, and in ca. 60 Ma, respectively. Our time-dependent analysis of plate motion and continental deformation coupling suggests that the multi-plate convergent motion and ocean-continent convergent orogeny were induced by advance subduction during the Jurassic and earliest Cretaceous. Our analysis also indicates that the intra-continent rifting and back-arc extension were triggered by trench retreat during the Cretaceous and that the subduction of oceanic ridge and arc were triggered by trench retreat during the Cenozoic. Therefore, reconstructing

  18. Hidden Earthquake Potential in Plate Boundary Transition Zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Furlong, Kevin P.; Herman, Matthew; Govers, Rob

    2017-04-01

    Plate boundaries can exhibit spatially abrupt changes in their long-term tectonic deformation (and associated kinematics) at triple junctions and other sites of changes in plate boundary structure. How earthquake behavior responds to these abrupt tectonic changes is unclear. The situation may be additionally obscured by the effects of superimposed deformational signals - juxtaposed short-term (earthquake cycle) kinematics may combine to produce a net deformational signal that does not reflect intuition about the actual strain accumulation in the region. Two examples of this effect are in the vicinity of the Mendocino triple junction (MTJ) along the west coast of North America, and at the southern end of the Hikurangi subduction zone, New Zealand. In the region immediately north of the MTJ, GPS-based observed crustal displacements (relative to North America (NAm)) are intermediate between Pacific and Juan de Fuca (JdF) motions. With distance north, these displacements rotate to become more aligned with JdF - NAm displacements, i.e. to motions expected along a coupled subduction interface. The deviation of GPS motions from the coupled subduction interface signal near the MTJ has been previously interpreted to reflect clock-wise rotation of a coastal, crustal block and/or reduced coupling at the southern Cascadia margin. The geologic record of crustal deformation near the MTJ reflects the combined effects of northward crustal shortening (on geologic time scales) associated with the MTJ Crustal Conveyor (Furlong and Govers, 1999) overprinted onto the subduction earthquake cycle signal. With this interpretation, the Cascadia subduction margin appears to be well-coupled along its entire length, consistent with paleo-seismic records of large earthquake ruptures extending to its southern limit. At the Hikurangi to Alpine Fault transition in New Zealand, plate interactions switch from subduction to oblique translation as a consequence of changes in lithospheric structure of

  19. Zoogeography of the San Andreas Fault system: Great Pacific Fracture Zones correspond with spatially concordant phylogeographic boundaries in western North America.

    PubMed

    Gottscho, Andrew D

    2016-02-01

    The purpose of this article is to provide an ultimate tectonic explanation for several well-studied zoogeographic boundaries along the west coast of North America, specifically, along the boundary of the North American and Pacific plates (the San Andreas Fault system). By reviewing 177 references from the plate tectonics and zoogeography literature, I demonstrate that four Great Pacific Fracture Zones (GPFZs) in the Pacific plate correspond with distributional limits and spatially concordant phylogeographic breaks for a wide variety of marine and terrestrial animals, including invertebrates, fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals. These boundaries are: (1) Cape Mendocino and the North Coast Divide, (2) Point Conception and the Transverse Ranges, (3) Punta Eugenia and the Vizcaíno Desert, and (4) Cabo Corrientes and the Sierra Transvolcanica. However, discussion of the GPFZs is mostly absent from the zoogeography and phylogeography literature likely due to a disconnect between biologists and geologists. I argue that the four zoogeographic boundaries reviewed here ultimately originated via the same geological process (triple junction evolution). Finally, I suggest how a comparative phylogeographic approach can be used to test the hypothesis presented here. © 2014 Cambridge Philosophical Society.

  20. High-resolution reconstructions of Pacific-North America plate motion: 20 Ma to present

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DeMets, C.; Merkouriev, S.

    2016-11-01

    We present new rotations that describe the relative positions and velocities of the Pacific and North America plates at 22 times during the past 19.7 Myr, offering ≈1-Myr temporal resolution for studies of the geotectonic evolution of western North America and other plate boundary locations. Derived from ≈18 000 magnetic reversal, fracture zone and transform fault identifications from the Pacific-Antarctic-Nubia-North America plate circuit and the velocities of 935 GPS sites on the Pacific and North America plates, the new rotations and GPS-derived angular velocity indicate that the rate of motion between the two plates increased by ≈70 per cent from 19.7 to 9±1 Ma, but changed by less than 2 per cent since 8 Ma and even less since 4.2 Ma. The rotations further suggest that the relative plate direction has rotated clockwise for most of the past 20 Myr, with a possible hiatus from 9 to 5 Ma. This conflicts with previously reported evidence for a significant clockwise change in the plate direction at ≈8-6 Ma. Our new rotations indicate that Pacific plate motion became obliquely convergent with respect to the San Andreas Fault of central California at 5.2-4.2 Ma, in agreement with geological evidence for a Pliocene onset of folding and faulting in central California. Our reconstruction of the northern Gulf of California at 6.3 Ma differs by only 15-30 km from structurally derived reconstructions after including 3-4 km Myr-1 of geodetically measured slip between the Baja California Peninsula and Pacific plate. This implies an approximate 15-30 km upper bound for plate non-rigidity integrated around the global circuit at 6.3 Ma. A much larger 200±54 km discrepancy between our reconstruction of the northern Gulf of California at 12 Ma and that estimated from structural and marine geophysical observations suggests that faults in northwestern Mexico or possibly west of the Baja California Peninsula accommodated large amounts of obliquely divergent dextral shear

  1. Investigating the Subduction History of the Southwest Pacific using Coupled Plate Tectonic-Mantle Convection Models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matthews, K. J.; Flament, N. E.; Williams, S.; Müller, D.; Gurnis, M.

    2014-12-01

    The Late Cretaceous to mid Eocene (~85-45 Ma) evolution of the southwest Pacific has been the subject of starkly contrasting plate reconstruction models, reflecting sparse and ambiguous data. Disparate models of (1) west-dipping subduction and back-arc basin opening to the east of the Lord Howe Rise, (2) east-dipping subduction and back-arc basin closure to the east of the Lord Howe Rise, and (3) tectonic quiescence with no subduction have all been proposed for this time frame. To help resolve this long-standing problem we test a new southwest Pacific reconstruction using global mantle flow models with imposed plate motions. The kinematic model incorporates east to northeast directed rollback of a west-dipping subduction zone between 85 and 55 Ma, accommodating opening of the South Loyalty back-arc basin to the east of New Caledonia. At 55 Ma there is a plate boundary reorganization in the region. West-dipping subduction and back-arc basin spreading end, and there is initiation of northeast dipping subduction within the back-arc basin. Consumption of South Loyalty Basin seafloor continues until 45 Ma, when obduction onto New Caledonia begins. West-dipping Tonga-Kermadec subduction initiates at this time at the relict Late Cretaceous-earliest Eocene subduction boundary. We use the 3D spherical mantle convection code CitcomS coupled to the plate reconstruction software GPlates, with plate motions and evolving plate boundaries imposed since 230 Ma. The predicted present-day mantle structure is compared to S- and P-wave seismic tomography models, which can be used to infer the presence of slab material in the mantle at locations where fast velocity anomalies are imaged. This workflow enables us to assess the forward-modeled subduction history of the region.

  2. The Queen Charlotte-Fairweather Fault Zone - The Knife-Edged Pacific-North American Plate Boundary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Greene, H. G.; Barrie, J. V. J.; Brothers, D. S.; Nishenko, S. P.; Conway, K.; Enkin, R.; Conrad, J. E.; Maier, K. L.; Stacy, C.

    2016-12-01

    Recent investigations of the Queen Charlotte-Fairweather (QC-FW) Fault zone using multibeam echosounder bathymetric and 3.5-kHz sub-bottom profile data show that the fault zone is primarily represented by a single linear structure with small, localized pull-apart basins suggestive of transtension. Water column acoustical data imaged gas plumes concentrated along the fault zone with plume columns extending as much as 700 m above the crest of mud volcanoes. Piston cores indicate that the fault zone cuts hard-packed dense sands that have been dated as Pleistocene in age. The newly discovered fluids associated with the southern half of the fault zone and volcanic edifices with oceanic and continental plate petrologic affinities suggest that the QC-FW is a leaky transform system. Two independent investigations, one in the north part and one in the central part of the fault zone, using two different types of piercing points, found that the slip rate along at least a 200 km length was consistent at between 40-55 mm/yr. since about 14 ka, equivalent to the relative plate motion between the Pacific and North American plates in the NE Pacific region. We surmise that the QC-FW is accommodating most, if not all, of relative motion along a single primary strand without any detectable partitioning of motion onto other faults. This right-lateral strike-slip fault zone is expressed on the seafloor as a very straight feature that probably represents nearly pure strike-slip motion.

  3. A Geodetic Strain Rate Model for the Pacific-North American Plate Boundary, western United States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kreemer, C.; Hammond, W. C.; Blewitt, G.; Holland, A. A.; Bennett, R. A.

    2012-04-01

    We present a model of crustal strain rates derived from GPS measurements of horizontal station velocities in the Pacific-North American plate boundary in the western United States. The model reflects a best estimate of present-day deformation from the San Andreas fault system in the west to the Basin and Range province in the east. Of the total 2,846 GPS velocities used in the model, 1,197 are derived by ourselves, and 1,649 are taken from (mostly) published results. The velocities derived by ourselves (the "UNR solution") are estimated from GPS position time-series of continuous and semi-continuous stations for which data are publicly available. We estimated ITRF2005 positions from 2002-2011.5 using JPL's GIPSY-OASIS II software with ambiguity resolution applied using our custom Ambizap software. Only stations with time-series that span at least 2.25 years are considered. We removed from the time-series continental-scale common-mode errors using a spatially-varying filtering technique. Velocity uncertainties (typically 0.1-0.3 mm/yr) assume that the time-series contain flicker plus white noise. We used a subset of stations on the stable parts of the Pacific and North American plates to estimate the Pacific-North American pole of rotation. This pole is applied as a boundary condition to the model and the North American - ITRF2005 pole is used to rotate our velocities into a North America fixed reference frame. We do not include parts of the time-series that show curvature due to post-seismic deformation after major earthquakes and we also exclude stations whose time-series display a significant unexplained non-linearity or that are near volcanic centers. Transient effects longer than the observation period (i.e., slow viscoelastic relaxation) are left in the data. We added to the UNR solution velocities from 12 other studies. The velocities are transformed onto the UNR solution's reference frame by estimating and applying a translation and rotation that minimizes

  4. Holocene subsidence at the transition between strike-slip and subduction on the Pacific-Australian plate boundary, Marlborough Sounds, New Zealand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hayward, Bruce W.; Grenfell, Hugh R.; Sabaa, Ashwaq T.; Kay, Jon; Daymond-King, Rhiannon; Cochran, Ursula

    2010-03-01

    This paper provides the first solid evidence in support of a century-old hypothesis that the mountainous Marlborough Sounds region in central New Zealand is subsiding. More recent hypotheses suggest that this may be a result of southward migration of a slab of subducted Pacific Plate causing flexural downwarping of the overlying crust in the vicinity of the transition between subduction and strike-slip on the Pacific-Australian plate boundary. The proxy evidence for gradual Holocene subsidence comes from micropaleontological study of seven intertidal sediment cores from the inner Marlborough Sounds (at Havelock, Mahau Sound and Shakespeare Bay). Quantitative estimates (using Modern Analogue Technique) of former tidal elevations based on fossil foraminiferal faunas provide evidence of tectonic (not compaction-related) subsidence in all cores. Estimates of subsidence rates for individual cores vary within the range 0.2-2.4 m ka -1. The wide variation within subsidence rate estimates are related to a combination of the accuracy limits of radiocarbon dates, elevation estimates, and particularly our poor knowledge of the New Zealand Holocene sea-level curve. The most consistent subsidence rate at all three sites for the mid-late Holocene (last 6-7 ka) is ˜0.7-0.8 m ka -1. This rate is consistent with the average subsidence rate in the adjacent 4-km thick Wanganui sedimentary basin for the last 5 myr. Subsidence is inferred to have migrated southwards from the Wanganui Basin to impinge on the inner Marlborough Sounds in just the last 100-200 ka.

  5. Azimuthal anisotropy layering and plate motion in the Pacific Ocean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yuan, H.; Romanowicz, B. A.

    2012-12-01

    We recently developed a three dimensional radially and azimuthally anisotropic model of the upper mantle in north America, using a combination of long-period 3-component surface and overtone waveforms, and SKS splitting measurements (Yuan and Romanowicz, 2010, Yuan et al., 2011). We showed that azimuthal anisotropy is a powerful tool to detect layering in the upper mantle, revealing two domains in the cratonic lithosphere, separated by a sharp laterally varying boundary in the depth range 100-150 km, which seems to coincide with the mid-lithospheric boundary (MLD) found in receiver function studies. Contrary to receiver functions, azimuthal anisotropy also detects the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB) as manifested by a change in the fast axis direction, which becomes quasi-parallel to the absolute plate motion below ~250 km depth. A zone of stronger azimuthal anisotropy is found below the LAB both in the western US (peaking at depths of 100-150km) and in the craton (peaking at a depth of about 300 km). Here we show preliminary attempts at expanding our approach to the global scale, with a specific goal of determining whether such an anisotropic LAB can also be observed in the Pacific ocean. We started with our most recent global upper mantle radially anisotropic shear velocity model, determined using the Spectral Element Method (SEMum2; French et al., this meeting). We augment the corresponding global surface wave and overtone dataset (period range 60 to 400 s) with deep events and shorter period body waves, in order to ensure optimal deeper depth (>250km) anisotropy recovery due to the paucity of shear wave splitting measurements in the oceans. Our preliminary results, which do not yet incorporate SKS splitting measurements, look promising as they confirm the layering found previously in North America, using a different, global dataset and starting model. In the Pacific, our study confirms earlier azimuthal anisotropy results in the region (e.g. Smith et

  6. Florida: A Jurassic transform plate boundary

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Klitgord, Kim D.; Popenoe, Peter; Schouten, Hans

    1984-01-01

    Magnetic, gravity, seismic, and deep drill hole data integrated with plate tectonic reconstructions substantiate the existence of a transform plate boundary across southern Florida during the Jurassic. On the basis of this integrated suite of data the pre-Cretaceous Florida-Bahamas region can be divided into the pre-Jurassic North American plate, Jurassic marginal rift basins, and a broad Jurassic transform zone including stranded blocks of pre-Mesozoic continental crust. Major tectonic units include the Suwannee basin in northern Florida containing Paleozoic sedimentary rocks, a central Florida basement complex of Paleozoic age crystalline rock, the west Florida platform composed of stranded blocks of continental crust, the south Georgia rift containing Triassic sedimentary rocks which overlie block-faulted Suwannee basin sedimentary rocks, the Late Triassic-Jurassic age Apalachicola rift basin, and the Jurassic age south Florida, Bahamas, and Blake Plateau marginal rift basins. The major tectonic units are bounded by basement hinge zones and fracture zones (FZ). The basement hinge zone represents the block-faulted edge of the North American plate, separating Paleozoic and older crustal rocks from Jurassic rifted crust beneath the marginal basins. Fracture zones separate Mesozoic marginal sedimentary basins and include the Blake Spur FZ, Jacksonville FZ, Bahamas FZ, and Cuba FZ, bounding the Blake Plateau, Bahamas, south Florida, and southeastern Gulf of Mexico basins. The Bahamas FZ is the most important of all these features because its northwest extension coincides with the Gulf basin marginal fault zone, forming the southern edge of the North American plate during the Jurassic. The limited space between the North American and the South American/African plates requires that the Jurassic transform zone, connecting the Central Atlantic and the Gulf of Mexico spreading systems, was located between the Bahamas and Cuba FZ's in the region of southern Florida. Our

  7. Transients in Pacific/North American Plate Boundary Deformation: Synthesis and Modeling of GPS and Borehole Strain Observations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Solomon, Sean C.; Frey, H. V. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    This is the Final Technical Report on research conducted between 1 June 1997 and 14 September 2001 entitled "Transients in Pacific/North American plate boundary deformation: Synthesis and modeling of GPS and borehole strain observations." As the project title implies, our effort involved a geodetic study of strain transients, i.e., temporal variations in deformation rates, that occur within plate boundary zones and their relationship to earthquakes and plate motions. Important transients occur during and following large earthquakes, and there are also strain transients not apparently associated with earthquakes. A particularly intriguing class of transients, for which there is a modest but growing list of examples, are preseismic anomalies. Such earthquake precursors, if further documented and understood, would have obvious importance for earthquake hazard mitigation. Because the timescales for these diverse transients range over at least 6 orders of magnitude (minutes to years), no single geodetic technique is optimum. We therefore undertook a systematic synthesis of Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) and borehole strainmeter data in three areas in California where there are adequate numbers of both types of instruments (or their equivalent): the San Francisco Bay region (within the Bay Area Regional Deformation network), southern California (within the Southern California Integrated GPS Network), and Parkfield (where a two-color laser system provides a proxy for continuous GPS measurements). An integral component of our study was the elucidation of the physical mechanisms by which such transients occur and propagate. We therefore initiated the development of multiple forward models, using two independent approaches. In the first, we explored the response to specified earthquake slip in viscoelastic models that incorporated failure criteria and the geometry of major faults in California. In the second approach, we examined the dynamical response of a complex

  8. Iberian plate kinematics: A jumping plate boundary between Eurasia and Africa

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Srivastava, S.P.; Schouten, Hans; Roest, W.R.; Klitgord, Kim D.; Kovacs, L.C.; Verhoef, J.; Macnab, R.

    1990-01-01

    THE rotation of Iberia and its relation to the formation of the Pyrenees has been difficult to decipher because of the lack of detailed sea-floor spreading data, although several models have been proposed1-7. Here we use detailed aeromagnetic measurements from the sea floor offshore of the Grand Banks of Newfoundland to show that Iberia moved as part of the African plate from late Cretaceous to mid-Eocene time, with a plate boundary extending westward from the Bay of Biscay. When motion along this boundary ceased, a boundary linking extension in the King's Trough to compression along the Pyrenees came into existence. Finally, since the late Oligocene, Iberia has been part of the Eurasian plate, with the boundary between Eurasia and Africa situated along the Azores-Gibraltar fracture zone.

  9. Global Plate Velocities from the Global Positioning System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Larson, Kristine M.; Freymueller, Jeffrey T.; Philipsen, Steven

    1997-01-01

    We have analyzed 204 days of Global Positioning System (GPS) data from the global GPS network spanning January 1991 through March 1996. On the basis of these GPS coordinate solutions, we have estimated velocities for 38 sites, mostly located on the interiors of the Africa, Antarctica, Australia, Eurasia, Nazca, North America, Pacific, and South America plates. The uncertainties of the horizontal velocity components range from 1.2 to 5.0 mm/yr. With the exception of sites on the Pacific and Nazca plates, the GPS velocities agree with absolute plate model predictions within 95% confidence. For most of the sites in North America, Antarctica, and Eurasia, the agreement is better than 2 mm/yr. We find no persuasive evidence for significant vertical motions (less than 3 standard deviations), except at four sites. Three of these four were sites constrained to geodetic reference frame velocities. The GPS velocities were then used to estimate angular velocities for eight tectonic plates. Absolute angular velocities derived from the GPS data agree with the no net rotation (NNR) NUVEL-1A model within 95% confidence except for the Pacific plate. Our pole of rotation for the Pacific plate lies 11.5 deg west of the NNR NUVEL-1A pole, with an angular speed 10% faster. Our relative angular velocities agree with NUVEL-1A except for some involving the Pacific plate. While our Pacific-North America angular velocity differs significantly from NUVEL-1A, our model and NUVEL-1A predict very small differences in relative motion along the Pacific-North America plate boundary itself. Our Pacific-Australia and Pacific- Eurasia angular velocities are significantly faster than NUVEL-1A, predicting more rapid convergence at these two plate boundaries. Along the East Pacific Pise, our Pacific-Nazca angular velocity agrees in both rate and azimuth with NUVFL-1A.

  10. Plate boundary deformation at the latitude of the Salton Trough - northern Gulf of California (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stock, J. M.

    2013-12-01

    Along the Pacific-North America plate boundary zone, the segment including the southern San Andreas fault to Salton Trough and northern Gulf of California basins has been transtensional throughout its evolution, based on Pacific-North America displacement vectors calculated from the global plate circuit (900 × 20 km at N54°W since 20 Ma; 460 × 20 km at N48°W since 11 Ma). Nevertheless, active seismicity and focal mechanisms show a broad zone of plate boundary deformation within which the inferred stress regime varies locally (Yang & Hauksson 2013 GJI), and fault patterns in some regions suggest ongoing tectonic rotation. Similar behavior is inferred to have occurred in this zone over most of its history. Crustal structure in this region is constrained by surface geology, geophysical experiments (e.g., the 2011 Salton Seismic Imaging Project (SSIP), USGS Imperial Valley 1979, PACE), and interdisciplinary marine and onland studies in Mexico (e.g., NARS-Baja, Cortes, and surveys by PEMEX). Magnetic data (e.g., EMAG-2) aids in the recognition of large-scale crustal provinces and fault boundaries in regions lacking detailed geophysical surveys. Consideration of existing constraints on crustal thickness and architecture, and fault and basin evolution suggests that to reconcile geological deformation with plate motion history, the following additional factors need to be taken into account. 1) Plate boundary displacement via interacting systems of rotating blocks, coeval with slip on steep strike slip faults, and possibly related to slip on low angle extensional faults (e.g, Axen & Fletcher 1998 IGR) may be typical prior to the onset of seafloor spreading. This fault style may have accommodated up to 150 km of plate motion in the Mexican Continental Borderland and north of the Vizcaino Peninsula, likely between 12 and 15 Ma, as well as explaining younger rotations adjacent to the Gulf of California and current deformation southwest of the Salton Sea. 2) Geophysical

  11. Circum-arctic plate accretion - Isolating part of a pacific plate to form the nucleus of the Arctic Basin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Churkin, M.; Trexler, J.H.

    1980-01-01

    A mosaic of large lithospheric plates rims the Arctic Ocean Basin, and foldbelts between these plates contain numerous allochthonous microplates. A new model for continental drift and microplate accretion proposes that prior to the late Mesozoic the Kula plate extended from the Pacific into the Arctic. By a process of circumpolar drift and microplate accretion, fragments of the Pacific basin, including parts of the Kula plate, were cut off and isolated in the Arctic Ocean, the Yukon-Koyukuk basin in Alaska, and the Bering Sea. ?? 1980.

  12. Cenozoic lithospheric deformation in Northeast Asia and the rapidly-aging Pacific Plate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Ting; Moresi, Louis; Zhao, Dapeng; Sandiford, Dan; Whittaker, Joanne

    2018-06-01

    Northeast Asia underwent widespread rifting and magmatic events during the Cenozoic. The geodynamic origins of these tectonic events are often linked to Pacific plate subduction beneath Northeast Asia. However, the Japan Sea did not open until the late Oligocene, tens of millions of years after Pacific Plate subduction initiation in the Paleocene. Moreover, it is still not clear why the Baikal Rift Zone extension rate increased significantly after the late Miocene, while the Japan Sea opening ceased at the same time. Geodynamic models suggest these enigmatic events are related to the rapidly-aging Pacific Plate at the trench after Izanagi-Pacific spreading ridge subduction. Subduction of the young Pacific Plate delayed the Japan Sea opening during the Eocene while advection of the old Pacific Plate towards the trench increases seafloor age rapidly, allowing the Japan Sea to open after the early Miocene. The Japan Sea opening promotes fast trench retreat and slab stagnation, with subduction-induced wedge zone convection gradually increasing its extent during this process. The active rifting center associated with wedge zone convection upwelling also shifts inland-ward during slab stagnation, preventing further Japan Sea spreading while promoting the Baikal Rift Zone extension. Our geodynamic model provides a good explanation for the temporal-spatial patterns of the Cenozoic tectonic and magmatic events in Northeast Asia.

  13. Viscoelastic deformation near active plate boundaries

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ward, S. N.

    1986-01-01

    Model deformations near the active plate boundaries of Western North America using space-based geodetic measurements as constraints are discussed. The first six months of this project were spent gaining familarity with space-based measurements, accessing the Crustal Dynamics Data Information Computer, and building time independent deformation models. The initial goal was to see how well the simplest elastic models can reproduce very long base interferometry (VLBI) baseline data. From the Crustal Dynamics Data Information Service, a total of 18 VLBI baselines are available which have been surveyed on four or more occasions. These data were fed into weighted and unweighted inversions to obtain baseline closure rates. Four of the better quality lines are illustrated. The deformation model assumes that the observed baseline rates result from a combination of rigid plate tectonic motions plus a component resulting from elastic strain build up due to a failure of the plate boundary to slip at the full plate tectonic rate. The elastic deformation resulting from the locked plate boundary is meant to portray interseismic strain accumulation. During and shortly after a large interplate earthquake, these strains are largely released, and points near the fault which were previously retarded suddenly catch up to the positions predicted by rigid plate models. Researchers judge the quality of fit by the sum squares of weighted residuals, termed total variance. The observed baseline closures have a total variance of 99 (cm/y)squared. When the RM2 velocities are assumed to model the data, the total variance increases to 154 (cm/y)squared.

  14. Kinematics of the New Zealand plate boundary: Relative motion by GPS across networks of 1000 km and 50 km spacing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Meertens, Charles M.; Rocken, Christian; Perin, Barbara; Walcott, Richard

    1993-01-01

    The NASA/DOSE 'Kinematics of the New Zealand Plate Boundary' experiment is a four-year cooperative Global Positioning System (GPS) experiment involving 6 universities and institutions in New Zealand and the United States. The investigation covers two scales, the first on the scale of plates (approximately 1000 km) and the second is on the scale of the plate boundary zone (approximately 50 km). In the first portion of the experiment, phase A, the objective is to make direct measurements of tectonic plate motion between the Australian and Pacific plates using GPS in order to determine the Euler vector of this plate pair. The phase A portion of this experiment was initiated in December 1992 with the first-epoch baseline measurements on the large scale network. The network will be resurveyed two years later to obtain velocities. The stations which were observed for phase A are shown and listed. Additional regional stations which will be used for this study are listed and are part of either CIGNET or other global tracking networks. The phase A portion of the experiment is primarily the responsibility of the UNAVCO investigators. Therefore, this report concentrates on phase A. The first year of NASA funding for phase A included only support for the field work. Processing and analysis will take place with the second year of funding. The second part of the experiemnt measured relative motion between the Australian and Pacific plates across the pate boundary zone between Hokitika and Christchurch on the South Island of New Zealand. The extent and rate of deformation will be determined by comparisons with historical, conventional surveys and by repeated GPS measurements to be made in two years. This activity was the emphasis of the LDGO portion of the study. An ancillary experiment, phase C, concentrated on plate boundary deformation in the vicinity of Wellington and was done as part of training during the early portion of the field campaign. Details of the objectives of the

  15. Swath sonar mapping of Earth's submarine plate boundaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carbotte, S. M.; Ferrini, V. L.; Celnick, M.; Nitsche, F. O.; Ryan, W. B. F.

    2014-12-01

    The recent loss of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 in an area of the Indian Ocean where less than 5% of the seafloor is mapped with depth sounding data (Smith and Marks, EOS 2014) highlights the striking lack of detailed knowledge of the topography of the seabed for much of the worlds' oceans. Advances in swath sonar mapping technology over the past 30 years have led to dramatic improvements in our capability to map the seabed. However, the oceans are vast and only an estimated 10% of the seafloor has been mapped with these systems. Furthermore, the available coverage is highly heterogeneous and focused within areas of national strategic priority and community scientific interest. The major plate boundaries that encircle the globe, most of which are located in the submarine environment, have been a significant focus of marine geoscience research since the advent of swath sonar mapping. While the location of these plate boundaries are well defined from satellite-derived bathymetry, significant regions remain unmapped at the high-resolutions provided by swath sonars and that are needed to study active volcanic and tectonic plate boundary processes. Within the plate interiors, some fossil plate boundary zones, major hotspot volcanoes, and other volcanic provinces have been the focus of dedicated research programs. Away from these major tectonic structures, swath mapping coverage is limited to sparse ocean transit lines which often reveal previously unknown deep-sea channels and other little studied sedimentary structures not resolvable in existing low-resolution global compilations, highlighting the value of these data even in the tectonically quiet plate interiors. Here, we give an overview of multibeam swath sonar mapping of the major plate boundaries of the globe as extracted from public archives. Significant quantities of swath sonar data acquired from deep-sea regions are in restricted-access international archives. Open access to more of these data sets would

  16. Geographic boundary of the “Pacific Anomaly” near the Earth’s core-mantle boundary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Y.; Wen, L.

    2009-12-01

    Seismic tomography have revealed a broad, seismically low velocity anomaly in the Earth’s lower mantle beneath the Pacific (we term it the “Pacific Anomaly”), surrounded by the circum-Pacific high velocity zone. Here, we determine geographical boundary and average shear velocity structure of the Pacific Anomaly near the core-mantle boundary based on travel time analysis of ScSH-SH and ScS2-SS phases. We further constrain the detailed structure of the transition from the base of the Pacific Anomaly to the northern high velocity zone along two perpendicular cross sections on the basis of forward waveform modeling of the seismic data. Two cross-sections include one great arc across the Anomaly from New Zealand to Alaska and another from Solomon Islands to North America. Our seismic data are collected from those recorded in the China National Digital Seismographic Network, and many permanent and temporal arrays from the Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology. The observed ScS-SH and ScS2-SS differential travel time residuals allow the entire geographic boundary of the anomaly to be clearly defined. The seismic data suggest that the average shear velocity reduction inside the anomaly reaches -5% in the lowermost 300 km of the mantle. Waveform analysis of the seismic data sampling the edge of the anomaly further validates the model of the boundary previously deduced by differential-travel-time-residual data, and suggests that the northern boundary is characterized by a shear velocity model with the low-velocity region accompanied by a high velocity structure.

  17. Tectonics of the Easter plate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Engeln, J. F.; Stein, S.

    1984-01-01

    A new model for the Easter plate is presented in which rift propagation has resulted in the formation of a rigid plate between the propagating and dying ridges. The distribution of earthquakes, eleven new focal mechanisms, and existing bathymetric and magnetic data are used to describe the tectonics of this area. Both the Easter-Nazca and Easter-Pacific Euler poles are sufficiently close to the Easter plate to cause rapid changes in rates and directions of motion along the boundaries. The east and west boundaries are propagating and dying ridges; the southwest boundary is a slow-spreading ridge and the northern boundary is a complex zone of convergent and transform motion. The Easter plate may reflect the tectonics of rift propagation on a large scale, where rigid plate tectonics requires boundary reorientation. Simple schematic models to illustrate the general features and processes which occur at plates resulting from large-scale rift propagation are used.

  18. Evidence of displacement-driven maturation along the San Cristobal Trough transform plate boundary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neely, James S.; Furlong, Kevin P.

    2018-03-01

    The San Cristobal Trough (SCT), formed by the tearing of the Australia plate as it subducts under the Pacific plate near the Solomon Islands, provides an opportunity to study the transform boundary development process. Recent seismicity (2013-2016) along the 280 km long SCT, known as a Subduction-Transform Edge Propagator (STEP) fault, highlights the tearing process and ongoing development of the plate boundary. The region's earthquakes reveal two key characteristics. First, earthquakes at the western terminus of the SCT, which we interpret to indicate the Australia plate tearing, display disparate fault geometries. These events demonstrate that plate tearing is accommodated via multiple intersecting planes rather than a single through-going fault. Second, the SCT hosts sequences of Mw ∼7 strike-slip earthquakes that migrate westward through a rapid succession of events. Sequences in 1993 and 2015 both began along the eastern SCT and propagated west, but neither progression ruptured into or nucleated a large earthquake within the region near the tear. Utilizing b-value and Coulomb Failure Stress analyses, we examine these along-strike variations in the SCT's seismicity. b-Values are highest along the youngest, western end of the SCT and decrease with increasing distance from the tear. This trend may reflect increasing strain localization with increasing displacement. Coulomb Failure Stress analyses indicate that the stress conditions were conducive to continued western propagation of the 1993 and 2015 sequences suggesting that the unruptured western SCT may have fault geometries or properties that inhibit continued rupture. Our results indicate a displacement-driven fault maturation process. The multi-plane Australia plate tearing likely creates a western SCT with diffuse strain accommodated along a network of disorganized faults. After ∼90 km of cumulative displacement (∼900,000 yr of plate motion), strain localizes and faults align, allowing the SCT to host

  19. The Plate Boundary Observatory: Community Focused Web Services

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matykiewicz, J.; Anderson, G.; Lee, E.; Hoyt, B.; Hodgkinson, K.; Persson, E.; Wright, J.; Torrez, D.; Jackson, M.

    2006-12-01

    The Plate Boundary Observatory (PBO), part of the NSF-funded EarthScope project, is designed to study the three-dimensional strain field resulting from deformation across the active boundary zone between the Pacific and North American plates in the western United States. To meet these goals, PBO will install 852 continuous GPS stations, 103 borehole strainmeter stations, 28 tiltmeters, and five laser strainmeters, as well as manage data for 209 previously existing continuous GPS stations. UNAVCO provides access to data products from these stations, as well as general information about the PBO project, via the PBO web site (http://pboweb.unavco.org). GPS and strainmeter data products can be found using a variety of channels, including map searches, text searches, and station specific data retrieval. In addition, the PBO construction status is available via multiple mapping interfaces, including custom web based map widgets and Google Earth. Additional construction details can be accessed from PBO operational pages and station specific home pages. The current state of health for the PBO network is available with the statistical snap-shot, full map interfaces, tabular web based reports, and automatic data mining and alerts. UNAVCO is currently working to enhance the community access to this information by developing a web service framework for the discovery of data products, interfacing with operational engineers, and exposing data services to third party participants. In addition, UNAVCO, through the PBO project, provides advanced data management and monitoring systems for use by the community in operating geodetic networks in the United States and beyond. We will demonstrate these systems during the AGU meeting, and we welcome inquiries from the community at any time.

  20. Inter-plate aseismic slip on the subducting plate boundaries estimated from repeating earthquakes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Igarashi, T.

    2015-12-01

    Sequences of repeating earthquakes are caused by repeating slips of small patches surrounded by aseismic slip areas at plate boundary zones. Recently, they have been detected in many regions. In this study, I detected repeating earthquakes which occurred in Japan and the world by using seismograms observed in the Japanese seismic network, and investigated the space-time characteristics of inter-plate aseismic slip on the subducting plate boundaries. To extract repeating earthquakes, I calculate cross-correlation coefficients of band-pass filtering seismograms at each station following Igarashi [2010]. I used two data-set based on USGS catalog for about 25 years from May 1990 and JMA catalog for about 13 years from January 2002. As a result, I found many sequences of repeating earthquakes in the subducting plate boundaries of the Andaman-Sumatra-Java and Japan-Kuril-Kamchatka-Aleutian subduction zones. By applying the scaling relations among a seismic moment, recurrence interval and slip proposed by Nadeau and Johnson [1998], they indicate the space-time changes of inter-plate aseismic slips. Pairs of repeating earthquakes with the longest time interval occurred in the Solomon Islands area and the recurrence interval was about 18.5 years. The estimated slip-rate is about 46 mm/year, which correspond to about half of the relative plate motion in this area. Several sequences with fast slip-rates correspond to the post-seismic slips after the 2004 Sumatra-Andaman earthquake (M9.0), the 2006 Kuril earthquake (M8.3), the 2007 southern Sumatra earthquake (M8.5), and the 2011 Tohoku-oki earthquake (M9.0). The database of global repeating earthquakes enables the comparison of the inter-plate aseismic slips of various plate boundary zones of the world. I believe that I am likely to detect more sequences by extending analysis periods in the area where they were not found in this analysis.

  1. Heterogeneous subduction structure within the Pacific plate beneath the Izu-Bonin arc

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gong, Wei; Xing, Junhui; Jiang, Xiaodian

    2018-05-01

    The Izu-Bonin subduction zone is a subduction system formed in early Eocene. The structure of the subduction zone becomes complicated with the evolution of the surrounding plate motion, and many aspects are still unkown or ambiguous. The geodynamic implications are further investigated in related to published seismic observations and geochemical characters of the Izu-Bonin subduction zone. As indicated by seismic tomography and epicentral distributions, the dip angle of the plate beneath the segment to the south of 29°-30°N (the southern Izu-Bonin) is much steeper than the northern one (the northern Izu-Bonin). Deep focus events in the southern segment extend to the depth of ∼600 km, whereas in the northern section deep events just terminate at 420-450 km. Particularly, tomographic images show an obvious boundary between the northern and southern Izu-Bonin at depths of 150-600 km neglected in the previous studies. The northern and southern segments are even separated by a wide range of low-velocity anomaly in P and S wave tomography at 380 km and 450 km depths. In this depth range, three events near 30°N are characterized by strike-slip mechanisms with slab parallel σ1 and horizontally north-south trending σ3, which differ with the typical down-dip compression mechanisms for neighboring events. These events could be attributed to an abrupt change of the morphology and movement of the slab in the transition segment between the northern and southern Izu-Bonin. Indicated by the focal mechanisms, the northern and southern Izu-Bonin exhibits an inhomogeneous stress field, which is closely related to age differences of the downgoing slab. Because of the reheating process, the thermal age of the Pacific plate entering the Izu-Bonin trench in the past 10 Ma, is only 60-90 ± 20 Ma, along with the younger plate subducting in the northern segment. The seismic anisotropy implies that mantle wedge flow orientation is between the motion direction of the Pacific plate and

  2. 50-Ma Initiation of Hawaiian-Emperor Bend Records Major Change in Pacific Plate Motion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharp, Warren D.; Clague, David A.

    2006-09-01

    The Hawaiian-Emperor bend has played a prominent yet controversial role in deciphering past Pacific plate motions and the tempo of plate motion change. New ages for volcanoes of the central and southern Emperor chain define large changes in volcanic migration rate with little associated change in the chain's trend, which suggests that the bend did not form by slowing of the Hawaiian hot spot. Initiation of the bend near Kimmei seamount about 50 million years ago (MA) was coincident with realignment of Pacific spreading centers and early magmatism in western Pacific arcs, consistent with formation of the bend by changed Pacific plate motion.

  3. Anatomy of a Plate Boundary at Shallow Crustal Levels: a Composite Section from the Alpine Fault, New Zealand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barth, N. C.; Toy, V. G.; Boulton, C. J.; Carpenter, B. M.

    2010-12-01

    New Zealand's Alpine Fault is mostly a moderately SE-dipping dextral reverse plate boundary structure, but at its southern end, strike-slip-normal motion is indicated by offset of recent surfaces, juxtaposition of sediments, and both brittle and ductile shear sense indicators. At the location of uplift polarity reversal fault rocks exhumed from both the hangingwall Pacific and footwall Australian Plates are juxtaposed, offering a remarkably complete cross section of the plate boundary at shallow crustal levels. We describe Alpine Fault damage zone and fault core structures overprinted on Pacific and Australian plate mylonites of a variety of compositions, in a fault-strike perpendicular composite section spanning the reversal in dip-slip polarity. The damage zone is asymmetric; on the Australian Plate 160m of quartzose paragneiss-derived mylonites are overprinted by brittle faults and fractures that increase in density towards the principal slip surface (PSS). This damage zone fabric consists of 1-10m-spaced, moderately to steeply-dipping, 1-20cm-thick gouge-filled faults, overprinted on and sub-parallel to a mylonitic foliation sub-parallel to the PSS. On the Pacific Plate, only 40m of the 330m section of volcaniclastic-derived mylonites have brittle damage in the form of unhealed fractures and faults, as well as a pervasive greenschist facies hydrothermal alteration absent in the footwall. These damage-related structures comprise a network of small-offset faults and fractures with increasing density and intensity towards the PSS. The active Pacific Plate fault core is composed of ~1m of cataclasite grading into folded protocataclasite that is less folded and fractured with increasing distance from the PSS. The active Australian Plate fault core is <1.5m wide and consists of 3 distinct foliated clay gouges, as well as a 4cm thick brittle ultracataclasite immediately adjacent to the active PSS. The Australian Plate foliated clay gouge contains stringers of quartz

  4. Crustal motion studies in the southwest Pacific: Geodetic measurements of plate convergence in Tonga, Vanuatu and the Solomon Islands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phillips, David A.

    The southwest Pacific is one of the most tectonically dynamic regions on Earth. This research focused on crustal motion studies in three regions of active Pacific-Australia plate convergence in the southwest Pacific: Tonga, the New Hebrides (Vanuatu) and the Solomons Islands. In Tonga, new and refined velocity estimates based on more than a decade of Global Positioning System (GPS) measurements and advanced analysis techniques are much more accurate than previously reported values. Convergence rates of 80 to 165 mm/yr at the Tonga trench represent the fastest plate motions observed on Earth. For the first time, rotation of the Fiji platform relative to the Australian plate is observed, and anomalous deformation of the Tonga ridge was also detected. In the New Hebrides, a combined GPS dataset with a total time series of more than ten years led to new and refined velocity estimates throughout the island arc. Impingement of large bathymetric features has led to arc fragmentation, and four distinct tectonic segments are identified. The central New Hebrides arc segment is being shoved eastward relative to the rest of the arc as convergence is partitioned between the forearc (Australian plate) and the backarc (North Fiji Basin) boundaries due to impingement of the d'Entrecasteaux Ridge and associated Bougainville seamount. The southern New Hebrides arc converges with the Australian plate more rapidly than predicted due to backarc extension. The first measurements of convergence in the northern and southernmost arc segments were also made. In the Solomon Islands, a four-year GPS time series was used to generate the first geodetic estimates of crustal velocity in the New Georgia Group, with 57--84 mm/yr of Australia-Solomon motion and 19--39 mm/yr of Pacific-Solomon motion being observed. These velocities are 20--40% lower than predicted Australia-Pacific velocities. Two-dimensional dislocation models suggest that most of this discrepancy can be attributed to locking of

  5. Apparent Polar Wander of the Pacific Plate Since the Cretaeous and Implications for True Polar Wander and for the Plate Motion Circuit Through Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gordon, R. G.; Woodworth, D.

    2017-12-01

    In this presentation we review prior work on Pacific plate apparent polar wander and its implications (1) for true polar wander since ≈125 Ma and (2) for testing the global plate motion circuit through Antarctica. We furthermore update prior analyses using our recently improved and expanded apparent polar wander path for the Pacific plate [Woodworth et al., this meeting]. Three episodes of rapid motion of Pacific hotspots relative to the spin axis have occurred in the past ≈125 Ma: a ≈15° shift near 85 Ma [Gordon, 1983; Sager and Koppers, 2000], an ≈8° shift near the age of the Hawaiian-Emperor Bend [Petronotis et al., 1994; Woodworth et al., this meeting], and a 3°-°4 shift since 12 Ma [Woodworth et al., this meeting]. These shifts are in general agreement with the shifts of Indo-Atlantic hotspots relative to the spin axis. It has long been recognized that paleomagnetic poles from the continents, when rotated into the Pacific plate reference frame through plate motion circuits through Antarctica, are inconsistent with indigenous Pacific plate paleomagnetic poles and paleolatitudes [Suárez and Molnar, 1980; Gordon and Cox, 1980; Acton and Gordon, 1994]. We update such tests using our new and improved Pacific apparent polar wander path and show that the plate motion circuit through Antarctica still fails such paleomagnetic tests of consistency. Implications for global plate reconstructions and the hotspot reference frame will be discussed.

  6. Tectonic map of the Circum-Pacific region, Pacific basin sheet

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Scheibner, E.; Moore, G.W.; Drummond, K.J.; Dalziel, Corvalan Q.J.; Moritani, T.; Teraoka, Y.; Sato, T.; Craddock, C.

    2013-01-01

    George W. Moore (Arctic Region). Project coordination and final cartography was being carried out through the cooperation of the Office of the Chief Geologist of the U.S. Geological Survey, under the direction of General Chairman, George Gryc of Menlo Park, California. Project headquarters were located at 345 Middlefield Road, MS 952, Menlo Park, California 94025, U.S.A. The framework for the Circum-Pacific Map Project was developed in 1973 by a specially convened group of 12 North American geoscientists meeting in California. The project was officially launched at the First Circum-Pacific Conference on Energy and Mineral Resources, which met in Honolulu, Hawaii, in August 1974. Sponsors of the conference were the AAPG, Pacific Science Association (PSA), and the Coordinating Committee for Offshore Prospecting for Mineral Resources in Offshore Asian Areas (CCOP). The Circum-Pacific Map Project operates as an activity of the Circum-Pacific Council for Energy and Mineral Resources, a nonprofit organization that promotes cooperation among Circum-Pacific countries in the study of energy and mineral resources of the Pacific basin. Founded by Michel T. Halbouty in 1972, the Council also sponsors conferences, topical symposia, workshops and the Earth Science Series books. Tectonic Map Series: The tectonic maps distinguish areas of oceanic and continental crust. Symbols in red mark active plate boundaries, and colored patterns show tectonic units (volcanic or magmatic arcs, arc-trench gaps, and interarc basins) associated with active plate margins. Well-documented inactive plate boundaries are shown by symbols in black. The tectonic development of oceanic crust is shown by episodes of seafloor spreading. These correlate with the rift and drift sequences at passive continental margins and episodes of tectonic activity at active plate margins. The recognized episodes of seafloor spreading seem to reflect major changes in plate kinematics. Oceanic plateaus and other prominences of

  7. Pacific plate motion change caused the Hawaiian-Emperor Bend

    PubMed Central

    Torsvik, Trond H.; Doubrovine, Pavel V.; Steinberger, Bernhard; Gaina, Carmen; Spakman, Wim; Domeier, Mathew

    2017-01-01

    A conspicuous 60° bend of the Hawaiian-Emperor Chain in the north-western Pacific Ocean has variously been interpreted as the result of an abrupt Pacific plate motion change in the Eocene (∼47 Ma), a rapid southward drift of the Hawaiian hotspot before the formation of the bend, or a combination of these two causes. Palaeomagnetic data from the Emperor Seamounts prove ambiguous for constraining the Hawaiian hotspot drift, but mantle flow modelling suggests that the hotspot drifted 4–9° south between 80 and 47 Ma. Here we demonstrate that southward hotspot drift cannot be a sole or dominant mechanism for formation of the Hawaiian-Emperor Bend (HEB). While southward hotspot drift has resulted in more northerly positions of the Emperor Seamounts as they are observed today, formation of the HEB cannot be explained without invoking a prominent change in the direction of Pacific plate motion around 47 Ma. PMID:28580950

  8. Changes in Pacific Absolute Plate Motion and Formation of Oceanic Flood Basalt Plateaus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kroenke, L. W.; Wessel, P.

    2006-12-01

    The origin of the large oceanic flood basalt plateaus that are prominent features of the central western Pacific Basin remains unclear. Major changes in Pacific Absolute Plate Motion (APM) have been identified as occurring at 145, 125, 96, and 47 Ma. Formation of the Shatsky Rise (~145 Ma), the Ontong Java Plateau (122+ Ma), the Southern Hess Rise (95±5 Ma), and the Louisiade Plateau (~48 Ma) appear to coincide with these changes. A smaller, but still prominent change in Pacific APM also occurred at 110 Ma when the Northern Hess Rise formed. Although these concurrent events may simply be chance occurrences, initiation of plate tectonic reorganizations upon arrival of mantle plume heads also was proposed by Ratcliff et al. (1998), who suggested that the mantle plume head delivery of hot material to produce flood basalts also had the potential to trigger reorganizations of plate motions. It should be noted, however, that Pacific Rim subduction zone development also coincides with these APM changes, and that the actual cause and effect of each change in APM has yet to be clearly established. Here we present a modified Pacific APM model that uses several older seamount chains (Musicians, Ratak-Gilbert-Ellice, the Wake trails, and the Liliuokalani trails) to constrain the oldest Pacific plate motion using the hybrid technique of Wessel et al (2006).

  9. A revised estimate of Pacific-North America motion and implications for Western North America plate boundary zone tectonics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Demets, Charles; Gordon, Richard G.; Stein, Seth; Argus, Donald F.

    1987-01-01

    Marine magnetic profiles from the Gulf of Californa are studied in order to revise the estimate of Pacific-North America motion. It is found that since 3 Ma spreading has averaged 48 mm/yr, consistent with a new global plate motion model derived without any data. The present data suggest that strike-slip motion on faults west of the San Andreas is less than previously thought, reducing the San Andreas discrepancy with geodetic, seismological, and other geologic observations.

  10. EarthScope Plate Boundary Observatory Data in the College Classroom (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eriksson, S. C.; Olds, S. E.

    2009-12-01

    The Plate Boundary Observatory (PBO) is the geodetic component of the EarthScope project, designed to study the 3-D strain field across the active boundary zone between the Pacific and North American tectonics plates in the western United States. All PBO data are freely available to scientific and educational communities and have been incorporated into a variety of activities for college and university classrooms. UNAVCO Education and Outreach program staff have worked closely with faculty users, scientific researchers, and facility staff to create materials that are scientifically and technically accurate as well as useful to the classroom user. Availability of processed GPS data is not new to the geoscience community. However, PBO data staff have worked with education staff to deliver data that are readily accessible to educators. The UNAVCO Data for Educators webpage, incorporating an embedded Google Map with PBO GPS locations and providing current GPS time series plots and downloadable data, extends and updates the datasets available to our community. Google Earth allows the visualization GPS data with other types of datasets, e.g. LiDAR, while maintaining the self-contained and easy-to-use interface of UNAVCO’s Jules Verne Voyager map tools, which have multiple sets of geological and geophysical data. Curricular materials provide scaffolds for using EarthScope data in a variety of forms for different learning goals. Simple visualization of earthquake epicenters and locations of volcanoes can be used with velocity vectors to make simple deductions of plate boundary behaviors. Readily available time series plots provide opportunities for additional science skills, and there are web and paper-based support materials for downloading data, manipulating tables, and using plotting programs for processed GPS data. Scientists have provided contextual materials to explore the importance of these data in interpreting the structure and dynamics of the Earth. These data

  11. Simulating faults and plate boundaries with a transversely isotropic plasticity model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharples, W.; Moresi, L. N.; Velic, M.; Jadamec, M. A.; May, D. A.

    2016-03-01

    In mantle convection simulations, dynamically evolving plate boundaries have, for the most part, been represented using an visco-plastic flow law. These systems develop fine-scale, localized, weak shear band structures which are reminiscent of faults but it is a significant challenge to resolve the large- and the emergent, small-scale-behavior. We address this issue of resolution by taking into account the observation that a rock element with embedded, planar, failure surfaces responds as a non-linear, transversely isotropic material with a weak orientation defined by the plane of the failure surface. This approach partly accounts for the large-scale behavior of fine-scale systems of shear bands which we are not in a position to resolve explicitly. We evaluate the capacity of this continuum approach to model plate boundaries, specifically in the context of subduction models where the plate boundary interface has often been represented as a planar discontinuity. We show that the inclusion of the transversely isotropic plasticity model for the plate boundary promotes asymmetric subduction from initiation. A realistic evolution of the plate boundary interface and associated stresses is crucial to understanding inter-plate coupling, convergent margin driven topography, and earthquakes.

  12. Composite and Component Plates, Plate Non-rigidity, and the Steadiness of Plate Motion From Marine Geophysical and Space Geodetic Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gordon, R. G.; Argus, D. F.; DeMets, C.

    2017-12-01

    Plate tectonic theory has evolved since its birth 50 years ago. In particular, we now recognize that some of the originally proposed plates such as the Indo-Australia plate, the Africa plate, and the America plate are what we term "composite" plates—entities that contain no traditionally defined narrow plate boundaries, but are composed of multiple approximately rigid regions, which we term "component" plates, separated by diffuse plate boundaries. The best example of a composite plate is the Indo-Australia composite plate, which consists of the India, Capricorn, Australia, and Macquarie component plates and multiple intervening diffuse oceanic plate boundaries. The poles of relative rotation between component plates tend to lie in their mutual diffuse plate boundary. Outside of diffuse boundaries, plate rigidity has proven to be an excellent approximation, but the non-closure of some plate circuits indicates that stable plate interiors have a small but significant non-rigidity that may add up to 1 to 2 mm/a across any individual plate and may be partly due to horizontal thermal contraction of oceanic lithosphere. The greatest observational challenge to plate rigidity is posed by the Pacific-Cocos-Nazca plate circuit, which fails closure by 15 ±4 mm/a. The most rapid deformation of the plates observed with space geodesy is generated by solid Earth's viscous response to unloading of the late Pleistocene ice sheets. Differences between different realizations of global plate velocities from space geodesy appear in some cases to be due to differing assumptions about the motion of the geocenter, which affects estimated plate relative angular velocities and estimated vertical motion at geodetic sites. Comparison of space geodetic and marine geophysical plate motion rates and directions has demonstrated that plate motion is nearly steady, which allows plate boundary conditions to be applied to inter-seismic strain accumulation due to locking of specific faults. In

  13. Plate-tectonic boundary formation by grain-damage and pinning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bercovici, David

    2015-04-01

    Shear weakening in the lithosphere is an essential ingredient for understanding how and why plate tectonics is generated from mantle convection on terrestrial planets. I present continued work on a theoretical model for lithospheric shear-localization and plate generation through damage, grain evolution and Zener pinning in two-phase (polycrystalline) lithospheric rocks. Grain size evolves through the competition between coarsening, which drives grain-growth, with damage, which drives grain reduction. The interface between phases controls Zener pinning, which impedes grain growth. Damage to the interface enhances the Zener pinning effect, which then reduces grain-size, forcing the rheology into the grain-size-dependent diffusion creep regime. This process thus allows damage and rheological weakening to co-exist, providing a necessary shear-localizing feedback. Moreover, because pinning inhibits grain-growth it promotes shear-zone longevity and plate-boundary inheritance. This theory has been applied recently to the emergence of plate tectonics in the Archean by transient subduction and accumulation of plate boundaries over 1Gyr, as well as to rapid slab detachment and abrupt tectonic changes. New work explores the saturation of interface damage at low interface curvature (e.g., because it is associated with larger grains that take up more of the damage, and/or because interface area is reduced). This effect allows three possible equilibrium grain-sizes for a given stress; a small-grain-size high-shear state in diffusion creep, a large grain-size low shear state in dislocation creep, and an intermediate state (often near the deformation map phase-boundary). The low and high grain-size states are stable, while the intermediate one is unstable. This implies that a material deformed at a given stress can acquire two stable deformation regimes, a low- and high- shear state; these are indicative of plate-like flows, i.e, the coexistence of both slowly deforming plates

  14. Tracking the India-Arabia Transform Plate Boundary during Paleogene Times.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rodriguez, M.; Huchon, P.; Chamot-Rooke, N. R. A.; Fournier, M.; Delescluse, M.

    2014-12-01

    The Zagros and Himalaya mountain belts are the most prominent reliefs built by continental collision. They respectively result from Arabia and India collision with Eurasia. Convergence motions at mountain belts induced most of plate reorganization events in the Indian Ocean during the Cenozoic. Although critical for paleogeographic reconstructions, the way relative motion between Arabia and India was accommodated prior to the formation of the Sheba ridge in the Gulf of Aden remains poorly understood. The India-Arabia plate-boundary belongs to the category of long-lived (~90-Ma) oceanic transform faults, thus providing a good case study to investigate the role of major kinematic events over the structural evolution of a long-lived transform system. A seismic dataset crossing the Owen Fracture Zone, the Owen Basin, and the Oman Margin was acquired to track the past locations of the India-Arabia plate boundary. We highlight the composite age of the Owen Basin basement, made of Paleocene oceanic crust drilled on its eastern part, and composed of pre-Maastrichtian continental crust overlaid by Early Paleocene ophiolites on its western side. A major transform fault system crossing the Owen Basin juxtaposed these two slivers of lithosphere of different ages, and controlled the uplift of marginal ridges along the Oman Margin. This transform system deactivated ~40 Ma ago, coeval with the onset of ultra-slow spreading at the Carlsberg Ridge. The transform boundary then jumped to the edge of the present-day Owen Ridge during the Late Eocene-Oligocene period, before seafloor spreading began at the Sheba Ridge. This migration of the plate boundary involved the transfer of a part of the Indian oceanic lithosphere accreted at the Carlsberg Ridge to the Arabian plate. The episode of plate transfer at the India-Arabia plate boundary during the Late Eocene-Oligocene interval is synchronous with a global plate reorganization event corresponding to geological events at the Zagros and

  15. Geophysical surveys of the Queen Charlotte Fault plate boundary off SE Alaska: Preliminary results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ten Brink, U. S.; Brothers, D. S.; Andrews, B. D.; Kluesner, J.; Haeussler, P. J.; Miller, N. C.; Watt, J. T.; Dartnell, P.; East, A. E.

    2016-12-01

    Recent multibeam sonar and high-resolution seismic surveys covering the northern 400-km-long segment of Queen Charlotte Fault off SE Alaska, indicate that the entire 50 mm/yr right-lateral Pacific-North America plate motion is currently accommodated by a single fault trace. The trace is remarkably straight rarely interrupted by step-overs, and is often <100 m wide. It runs along the shelf edge dropping into the slope only in the southern end of the mapped area. The straight and narrow surficial fault expression and its location with respect to the shelf may be due to high sedimentation rate during the collapse of the SE Alaska ice cap 17,000 yr ago, which obliterated the previous surficial deformation. Gravity data suggests that the fault may separate the 15-20 Ma oceanic crust of the Pacific plate from continental forearc and arc terrains of a former subduction zone. This unusual setting for a transform plate boundary might have resulted from the northward passage of the thick crust of the Yakutat Terrane during the Late Cenozoic. A step-over at the mouth of Chatham Strait has formed a 20-km-long 1.6-km-wide pull-apart basin composed of 3 sub-basins. Internal basin stratigraphy indicates possible southward migration of the step-over with time. Slight outward curving of the southern strand may suggest the presence of a deeper barrier there, which could have terminated the northward super-shear rupture of the 2013 M7.5 Craig Earthquake. Whether this possible barrier is related to the intersection of the Aja Fracture Zone with the plate boundary is unclear. No other surficial impediments to rupture were observed along the 315 km trace between this fault step-over and a 20° bend near Icy Point, where the fault extends onshore and becomes highly transpressional. An enigmatic oval depression, 1.5-2 km wide and 500 m deep, south of the step-over and a possible mud volcano north of the step-over, may attest to possible vigorous gas and fluid upwelling along the fault

  16. Composite transform-convergent plate boundaries: description and discussion

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ryan, H.F.; Coleman, P.J.

    1992-01-01

    The leading edge of the overriding plate at an obliquely convergent boundary is commonly sliced by a system of strike-slip faults. This fault system is often structurally complex, and may show correspondingly uneven strain effects, with great vertical and translational shifts of the component blocks of the fault system. The stress pattern and strain effects vary along the length of the system and change through time. These margins are considered to be composite transform-convergent (CTC) plate boundaries. Examples are given of structures formed along three CTC boundaries: the Aleutian Ridge, the Solomon Islands, and the Philippines. The dynamism of the fault system along a CTC boundary can enhance vertical tectonism and basin formation. This concept provides a framework for the evaluation of petroleum resources related to basin formation, and mineral exploration related to igneous activity associated with transtensional processes. ?? 1992.

  17. Radiocarbon evidence for extensive plate-boundary rupture about 300 years ago at the Cascadia subduction zone

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nelson, A.R.; Atwater, B.F.; Bobrowsky, P.T.; Bradley, L.A.; Clague, J.J.; Carver, G.A.; Darienzo, M.E.; Grant, W.C.; Krueger, H.W.; Sparks, R.; Stafford, Thomas W.; Stuiver, M.

    1995-01-01

    THE Cascadia subduction zone, a region of converging tectonic plates along the Pacific coast of North America, has a geological history of very large plate-boundary earthquakes1,2, but no such earthquakes have struck this region since Euro-American settlement about 150 years ago. Geophysical estimates of the moment magnitudes (Mw) of the largest such earthquakes range from 8 (ref. 3).to 91/2 (ref. 4). Radiocarbon dating of earthquake-killed vegetation can set upper bounds on earthquake size by constraining the length of plate boundary that ruptured in individual earthquakes. Such dating has shown that the most recent rupture, or series of ruptures, extended at least 55 km along the Washington coast within a period of a few decades about 300 years ago5. Here we report 85 new 14C ages, which suggest that this most recent rupture (or series) extended at least 900 km between southern British Columbia and northern California. By comparing the 14C ages with written records of the past 150 years, we conclude that a single magnitude 9 earthquake, or a series of lesser earthquakes, ruptured most of the length of the Cascadia subduction zone between the late 1600s and early 1800s, and probably in the early 1700s.

  18. Structural acoustic control of plates with variable boundary conditions: design methodology.

    PubMed

    Sprofera, Joseph D; Cabell, Randolph H; Gibbs, Gary P; Clark, Robert L

    2007-07-01

    A method for optimizing a structural acoustic control system subject to variations in plate boundary conditions is provided. The assumed modes method is used to build a plate model with varying levels of rotational boundary stiffness to simulate the dynamics of a plate with uncertain edge conditions. A transducer placement scoring process, involving Hankel singular values, is combined with a genetic optimization routine to find spatial locations robust to boundary condition variation. Predicted frequency response characteristics are examined, and theoretically optimized results are discussed in relation to the range of boundary conditions investigated. Modeled results indicate that it is possible to minimize the impact of uncertain boundary conditions in active structural acoustic control by optimizing the placement of transducers with respect to those uncertainties.

  19. Crustal deformation and volcanism at active plate boundaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Geirsson, Halldor

    Most of Earth's volcanoes are located near active tectonic plate boundaries, where the tectonic plates move relative to each other resulting in deformation. Likewise, subsurface magma movement and pressure changes in magmatic systems can cause measurable deformation of the Earth's surface. The study of the shape of Earth and therefore studies of surface deformation is called geodesy. Modern geodetic techniques allow precise measurements (˜1 mm accuracy) of deformation of tectonic and magmatic systems. Because of the spatial correlation between tectonic boundaries and volcanism, the tectonic and volcanic deformation signals can become intertwined. Thus it is often important to study both tectonic and volcanic deformation processes simultaneously, when one is trying to study one of the systems individually. In this thesis, I present research on crustal deformation and magmatic processes at active plate boundaries. The study areas cover divergent and transform plate boundaries in south Iceland and convergent and transform plate boundaries in Central America, specifically Nicaragua and El Salvador. The study is composed of four main chapters: two of the chapters focus on the magma plumbing system of Hekla volcano, Iceland and the plate boundary in south Iceland; one chapter focuses on shallow controls of explosive volcanism at Telica volcano, Nicaragua; and the fourth chapter focuses on co- and post-seismic deformation from a Mw = 7.3 earthquake which occurred offshore El Salvador in 2012. Hekla volcano is located at the intersection of a transform zone and a rift zone in Iceland and thus is affected by a combination of shear and extensional strains, in addition to co-seismic and co-rifting deformation. The inter-eruptive deformation signal from Hekla is subtle, as observed by a decade (2000-2010) of GPS data in south Iceland. A simultaneous inversion of this data for parameters describing the geometry and source characteristics of the magma chamber at Hekla, and

  20. Pressure-Driven Poiseuille Flow: A Major Component of the Torque-Balance Governing Pacific Plate Motion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stotz, I. L.; Iaffaldano, G.; Davies, D. R.

    2018-01-01

    The Pacific Plate is thought to be driven mainly by slab pull, associated with subduction along the Aleutians-Japan, Marianas-Izu-Bonin, and Tonga-Kermadec trenches. This implies that viscous flow within the sub-Pacific asthenosphere is mainly generated by overlying plate motion (i.e., Couette flow) and that the associated shear stresses at the lithosphere's base are resisting such motion. Recent studies on glacial isostatic adjustment and lithosphere dynamics provide tighter constraints on the viscosity and thickness of Earth's asthenosphere and, therefore, on the amount of shear stress that asthenosphere and lithosphere mutually exchange, by virtue of Newton's third law of motion. In light of these constraints, the notion that subduction is the main driver of present-day Pacific Plate motion becomes somewhat unviable, as the pulling force that would be required by slabs exceeds the maximum available from their negative buoyancy. Here we use coupled global models of mantle and lithosphere dynamics to show that the sub-Pacific asthenosphere features a significant component of pressure-driven (i.e., Poiseuille) flow and that this has driven at least 50% of the Pacific Plate motion since, at least, 15 Ma. A corollary of our models is that a sublithospheric pressure difference as high as ±50 MPa is required across the Pacific domain.

  1. A Plate Tectonic Model for the Neoproterozoic with Evolving Plate Boundaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Merdith, Andrew; Collins, Alan; Williams, Simon; Pisarevsky, Sergei; Müller, Dietmar

    2017-04-01

    The Neoproterozoic was dominated by the formation of the supercontinent Rodinia, its break-up and the subsequent amalgamation of Gondwana, during which, the planet experienced large climatic variations and the emergence of complex life. Here we present a topological plate model of the Neoproterozoic based on a synthesis of available geological and palaeomagnetic data. Subduction zones, which are well preserved in the geological record, are used as a proxy for convergent margins; evidence for mid-ocean ridges and transform motion is less clearly preserved, though passive margins are used as a proxy for spreading centres, and evidence for strike-slip motions are used to model transform boundaries. We find that the model presented here only predicts 70% of the total length of subduction active today, though it models similar lengths of both transform and divergent boundaries, suggesting that we have produced a conservative model and are probably underestimating the amount of subduction. Where evidence for convergent, divergent or transform motion is not preserved, we interpret the locations of plate boundaries based on the relative motions of cratonic crust as suggested through either palaeomagnetic data or the geological record. Using GPlates, we tie these boundaries together to generate a plate model that depicts the motion of tectonic plates through the Neoproterozoic. We omit India and South China from Rodinia completely, due to long-lived subduction preserved on margins of India and conflicting palaeomagnetic data for the Cryogenian, but tie them together due to similar Tonian aged accretionary patterns along their respective (present-day) north-western and northern margins, such that these two cratons act as a "lonely wanderer" for much of the Neoproterozoic, and form their own tectonic plate. We also introduce a Tonian-Cryogenian aged rotation of the Congo-São Francisco Craton relative to Rodinia to better fit palaeomagnetic data and account for thick passive

  2. Intermittent Granular Dynamics at a Seismogenic Plate Boundary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meroz, Yasmine; Meade, Brendan J.

    2017-09-01

    Earthquakes at seismogenic plate boundaries are a response to the differential motions of tectonic blocks embedded within a geometrically complex network of branching and coalescing faults. Elastic strain is accumulated at a slow strain rate on the order of 10-15 s-1 , and released intermittently at intervals >100 yr , in the form of rapid (seconds to minutes) coseismic ruptures. The development of macroscopic models of quasistatic planar tectonic dynamics at these plate boundaries has remained challenging due to uncertainty with regard to the spatial and kinematic complexity of fault system behaviors. The characteristic length scale of kinematically distinct tectonic structures is particularly poorly constrained. Here, we analyze fluctuations in Global Positioning System observations of interseismic motion from the southern California plate boundary, identifying heavy-tailed scaling behavior. Namely, we show that, consistent with findings for slowly sheared granular media, the distribution of velocity fluctuations deviates from a Gaussian, exhibiting broad tails, and the correlation function decays as a stretched exponential. This suggests that the plate boundary can be understood as a densely packed granular medium, predicting a characteristic tectonic length scale of 91 ±20 km , here representing the characteristic size of tectonic blocks in the southern California fault network, and relating the characteristic duration and recurrence interval of earthquakes, with the observed sheared strain rate, and the nanosecond value for the crack tip evolution time scale. Within a granular description, fault and blocks systems may rapidly rearrange the distribution of forces within them, driving a mixture of transient and intermittent fault slip behaviors over tectonic time scales.

  3. Core-Mantle Boundary Complexities beneath the Mid-Pacific

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, D.; Helmberger, D. V.; Jackson, J. M.

    2016-12-01

    The detailed core-mantle boundary (CMB) structures beneath the Mid-Pacific are important to map the boundary of Large Low Shear Velocity Province (LLSVP) and the location of ultra-low velocity zone (ULVZ) related to the LLSVP and the D" layer, which are crucial for answering the key questions regarding to the mantle dynamics. Seismic data from deep earthquakes in the Fiji-Tonga region recorded by stations of USArray provide great sampling of the CMB beneath the Mid-Pacific. Here we explore the USArray data with different seismic phases to study the CMB complexities beneath the Mid-Pacific. First, we examined the differential travel time and amplitude between ScS and S for data at western US and confirm the northeastern boundary of the mid-Pacific LLSVP. The delayed ScS-S travel times and smaller amplitude of ScS require the existence of ULVZ locally. Secondly, the Sdiff data recorded by stations at central US shows variation in multi-pathing, that is, the presence of secondary arrivals following the S phase at diffracted distances (Sdiff) which suggests that the waveform complexity is due to structures at the eastern edge of the mid-Pacific LLSVP. This study reinforces previous studies that indicate late arrivals occurring after the primary Sdiff arrivals. A tapered wedge structure with low shear velocity allows for wave energy trapping, producing the observed waveform complexity and delayed arrivals at large distances. The location of the low velocity anomaly agrees with that inferred from the ScS-S measurements. We also observed advanced SV arrivals, which can be explained by the emerging of the D" discontinuity to the east of the boundary of the LLSVP to produce a "pseudo anisotropy". Thirdly, the arrivals of the SPdKS phase support the presence of an ULVZ within a two-humped LLSVP. A sharp 10 secs jump of the differential travel time between S and SKS (TS-SKS) across distance range of 5° is observed. The associated SKS waveform distortions suggest that the

  4. Southeast Pacific tectonic evolution from Early Oligocene to Present

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tebbens, S. F.; Cande, S. C.

    1997-06-01

    Plate tectonic reconstructions of the Nazca, Antarctic, and Pacific plates are presented from late Oligocene to Present. These reconstructions document major plate boundary reorganizations in the southeast Pacific at dirons 6C (24 Ma), 6(o) (20 Ma), and 5A (12 Ma) and a smaller reorganization at chron 3(o) (5 Ma). During the chron 6(o) reorganization it appears that a ridge propagated into crust north of the northernmost Pacific-Antarctic Ridge, between the Chiloe fracture zone (FZ) of the Chile ridge and Agassiz FZ of the Pacific-Nazca ridge, which resulted in a northward jump of the Pacific-Antarctic-Nazca (PAC-ANT-NAZ) mid-ocean triple junction. During the chron 5A reorganization the Chile ridge propagated northward from the Valdivia FZ system to the Challenger FZ, through lithosphere formed roughly 5 Myr earlier at the Pacific-Nazca ridge. During this reorganization a short-lived microplate (the Friday microplate) existed at the PAC-ANT-NAZ triple junction. The PAC-ANT-NAZ triple junction jumped northward 500 km as a result of this reorganization, from a location along the Valdivia FZ to a location along the Challenger FZ. The chron 5A reorganization also included a change in spreading direction of the Chile and Pacific-Antarctic ridges. The reorganization at chron 3(o) initiated the formation of the Juan Fernandez and Easter microplates along the East Pacific rise. The manner of plate boundary reorganization at chron 6(o) and chron 5A (and possibly today at the Juan Fernandez microplate) included a sequence of rift propagation, transfer of lithosphere from one plate to another, microplate formation, and microplate abandonment and resulted in northward migration of the PAC-ANT-NAZ triple junction. The associated microplate differs from previously studied microplates in that there is no failed ridge.

  5. The seismotectonics of plate boundaries

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Berger, J.; Brune, J. N.; Goodkind, J.; Wyatt, F.; Agnew, D. C.; Beaumont, C.

    1981-01-01

    Research on the seismotectonics of plate boundaries is summarized. Instrumental development and an observational program designed to study various aspects of the seismotectonics of southern California and the northern Gulf of California are described. A unique superconducting gravimeter was further developed and supported under this program for deployment and operation at several sites. Work on Earth tides is also discussed.

  6. Tectonic implications of post-30 Ma Pacific and North American relative plate motions

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bohannon, R.G.; Parsons, T.

    1995-01-01

    The Pacific plate moved northwest relative to North America since 42 Ma. The rapid half rate of Pacific-Farallon spreading allowed the ridge to approach the continent at about 29 Ma. Extinct spreading ridges that occur offshore along 65% of the margin document that fragments of the subducted Farallon slab became captured by the Pacific plate and assumed its motion proper to the actual subduction of the spreading ridge. This plate-capture process can be used to explain much of the post-29 Ma Cordilleran North America extension, strike slip, and the inland jump of oceanic spreading in the Gulf of California. Much of the post-29 Ma continental tectonism is the result of the strong traction imposed on the deep part of the continental crust by the gently inclined slab of subducted oceanic lithosphere as it moved to the northwest relative to the overlying continent. -from Authors

  7. An Evaluation of the Fixed Hotspot Hypothesis for the Pacific Plate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wessel, P.; Kroenke, L. W.

    2008-12-01

    Using geometry and ages from 12 Pacific seamount chains, we recently constructed two new Pacific absolute plate motion models that extend our self-consistent and high-resolution models back to 145 Ma. The WK08-A model maps the full uncertainty in the age progressions into uncertainties in rotation opening angles, yielding a relatively smooth plate motion model. The WK08-G model relaxes the mapping of age uncertainties in order to better isolate secondary geometry changes seen along many co-registered chains. Both models have been used to assess the viability of the fixed hotspot hypothesis in the Pacific. In constructing these models, we found that only a small group of age samples had to be discarded on the grounds that they were discordant with the dominant trends. We were able to connect plate motions for pre- and post-Emperor age intervals by including the Ratak-Gilbert-Ellice, Liliuokalani and Musicians trails in our analysis. However, as no active hotspot locations exist for the older chains their inclusion adds additional model parameters. Both age and geometry misfits increase with age, reflecting the observed increase in age uncertainties and the broader and less distinct nature of the older trails. Paleomagnetic observations from the Emperor seamount chain have been interpreted to suggest that these seamounts must have formed at latitudes significantly more northerly than the present location of the Hawaii hotspot, implying a drifting mantle plume. At the same time, new estimates of the age of the Hawaii- Emperor bend places bend formation at a time of global plate reorganization. We will present a complete analysis of inter-chain distances between coeval radiometric samples from Pacific chains and compare these distances to the inter-hotspot distances at the present time. Significant departures from the current hotspot separations would be direct and unequivocal evidence of motion between the Pacific hotspot reference frame and the spin axis and as such

  8. Seismic link at plate boundary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ramdani, Faical; Kettani, Omar; Tadili, Benaissa

    2015-06-01

    Seismic triggering at plate boundaries has a very complex nature that includes seismic events at varying distances. The spatial orientation of triggering cannot be reduced to sequences from the main shocks. Seismic waves propagate at all times in all directions, particularly in highly active zones. No direct evidence can be obtained regarding which earthquakes trigger the shocks. The first approach is to determine the potential linked zones where triggering may occur. The second step is to determine the causality between the events and their triggered shocks. The spatial orientation of the links between events is established from pre-ordered networks and the adapted dependence of the spatio-temporal occurrence of earthquakes. Based on a coefficient of synchronous seismic activity to grid couples, we derive a network link by each threshold. The links of high thresholds are tested using the coherence of time series to determine the causality and related orientation. The resulting link orientations at the plate boundary conditions indicate that causal triggering seems to be localized along a major fault, as a stress transfer between two major faults, and parallel to the geothermal area extension.

  9. The proximity of hotspots to convergent and divergent plate boundaries

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Weinstein, Stuart A.; Olson, Peter L.

    1989-01-01

    An analysis of four different hotspot distributions, ranging from Morgan's (1972) original list of 19 to Vogt's (1981) list of 117 reveals that the hotspots are preferentially located near divergent plate boundaries. The probability of this proximity occurring by chance alone is quite remote, less than 0.01 for all four hotspot distributions. The same analysis also reveals that the hotspots are preferentially excluded from regions near convergent plate boundaries. The probability of this exclusion occurring by chance alone is 0.1 or less for three out of the four distributions examined. We interpret this behavior as being a consequence of the effects of large scale convective circulation on ascending mantle plumes. Mantle thermal plumes, the most probable source of hotspots, arise from instabilities in a basal thermal boundary layer. Plumes are suppressed from regions beneath convergent boundaries by descending flow and are entrained into the upwelling flow beneath spreading centers. Plate-scale convective circulation driven by subduction may also advect mantle thermal plumes toward spreading centers.

  10. Intermittent Granular Dynamics at a Seismogenic Plate Boundary.

    PubMed

    Meroz, Yasmine; Meade, Brendan J

    2017-09-29

    Earthquakes at seismogenic plate boundaries are a response to the differential motions of tectonic blocks embedded within a geometrically complex network of branching and coalescing faults. Elastic strain is accumulated at a slow strain rate on the order of 10^{-15}  s^{-1}, and released intermittently at intervals >100  yr, in the form of rapid (seconds to minutes) coseismic ruptures. The development of macroscopic models of quasistatic planar tectonic dynamics at these plate boundaries has remained challenging due to uncertainty with regard to the spatial and kinematic complexity of fault system behaviors. The characteristic length scale of kinematically distinct tectonic structures is particularly poorly constrained. Here, we analyze fluctuations in Global Positioning System observations of interseismic motion from the southern California plate boundary, identifying heavy-tailed scaling behavior. Namely, we show that, consistent with findings for slowly sheared granular media, the distribution of velocity fluctuations deviates from a Gaussian, exhibiting broad tails, and the correlation function decays as a stretched exponential. This suggests that the plate boundary can be understood as a densely packed granular medium, predicting a characteristic tectonic length scale of 91±20  km, here representing the characteristic size of tectonic blocks in the southern California fault network, and relating the characteristic duration and recurrence interval of earthquakes, with the observed sheared strain rate, and the nanosecond value for the crack tip evolution time scale. Within a granular description, fault and blocks systems may rapidly rearrange the distribution of forces within them, driving a mixture of transient and intermittent fault slip behaviors over tectonic time scales.

  11. Imaging megathrust zone and Yakutat/Pacific plate interface in Alaska subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Y.; Abers, G. A.; Li, J.; Christensen, D. H.; Calkins, J. A.

    2013-05-01

    We image the subducted slab underneath a 450 km long transect of the Alaska subduction zone. Dense stations in southern Alaska are set up to investigate (1) the geometry and velocity structure of the downgoing plate and their relation to slab seismicity, and (2) the interplate coupled zone where the great 1964 (magnitude 9.3) had greatest rupture. The joint teleseismic migration of two array datasets (MOOS, Multidisciplinary Observations of Onshore Subduction, and BEAAR, Broadband Experiment Across the Alaska Range) based on teleseismic receiver functions (RFs) using the MOOS data reveal a shallow-dipping prominent low-velocity layer at ~25-30 km depth in southern Alaska. Modeling of these RF amplitudes shows a thin (<6.5 km) low-velocity layer (shear wave velocity of ~3 km/s), which is ~20-30% slower than normal oceanic crustal velocities, between the subducted slab and the overriding North American plate. The observed low-velocity megathrust layer (with P-to-S velocity ratio (Vp/Vs) exceeding 2.0) may be due to a thick sediment input from the trench in combination of elevated pore fluid pressure in the channel. The subducted crust below the low-velocity channel has gabbroic velocities with a thickness of 11-12 km. Both velocities and thickness of the low-velocity channel abruptly increase as the slab bends in central Alaska, which agrees with previously published RF results. Our image also includes an unusually thick low-velocity crust subducting with a ~20 degree dip down to 130 km depth at approximately 200 km inland beneath central Alaska. The unusual nature of this subducted segment has been suggested to be due to the subduction of the Yakutat terrane. We also show a clear image of the Yakutat and Pacific plate subduction beneath the Kenai Peninsula, and the along-strike boundary between them at megathrust depths. Our imaged western edge of the Yakutat terrane, at 25-30 km depth in the central Kenai along the megathrust, aligns with the western end of the

  12. Pacific western boundary currents and their roles in climate.

    PubMed

    Hu, Dunxin; Wu, Lixin; Cai, Wenju; Gupta, Alex Sen; Ganachaud, Alexandre; Qiu, Bo; Gordon, Arnold L; Lin, Xiaopei; Chen, Zhaohui; Hu, Shijian; Wang, Guojian; Wang, Qingye; Sprintall, Janet; Qu, Tangdong; Kashino, Yuji; Wang, Fan; Kessler, William S

    2015-06-18

    Pacific Ocean western boundary currents and the interlinked equatorial Pacific circulation system were among the first currents of these types to be explored by pioneering oceanographers. The widely accepted but poorly quantified importance of these currents-in processes such as the El Niño/Southern Oscillation, the Pacific Decadal Oscillation and the Indonesian Throughflow-has triggered renewed interest. Ongoing efforts are seeking to understand the heat and mass balances of the equatorial Pacific, and possible changes associated with greenhouse-gas-induced climate change. Only a concerted international effort will close the observational, theoretical and technical gaps currently limiting a robust answer to these elusive questions.

  13. Analysis of turbulent free-convection boundary layer on flat plate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Eckert, E R G; Jackson, Thomas W

    1950-01-01

    A calculation was made for the flow and heat transfer in the turbulent free-convection boundary layer on a vertical flat plate. Formulas for the heat-transfer coefficient, boundary layer thickness, and the maximum velocity in the boundary layer were obtained.

  14. Fast Paleogene Motion of the Pacific Hotspots from Revised Global Plate Circuit Constraints

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Raymond, C.; Stock, J.; Cande, S.

    2000-01-01

    Major improvements in late Cretaceous-early Tertiary Pacific-Antarctica plate reconstructions, and new East-West Antarctica rotations, allow a more definitive test of the relative motion between hotspots using global plate circuit reconstructions with quantitative uncertainties.

  15. Images for the base of the Pacific lithospheric plate beneath Wellington, New Zealand, from 500 kg dynamite shots recorded on a 100 km-long, 1000 seismometer array

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stern, T. A.; Henrys, S. A.; Sato, H.; Okaya, D. A.

    2012-12-01

    Seismic P and S-wave reflections are recorded from a west-dipping horizon at depth of 105 km beneath Wellington, New Zealand. From the depth and dip of this horizon we interpret this horizon to be the bottom of the subducting Pacific plate. In May 2011 the Seismic Array on Hikurangi margin Experiment (SAHKE) recorded reflections on a ~100 km-long high-resolution seismic line across the lower North Island of New Zealand. The main goal of this experiment was to provide a detailed image of the west dipping subducted Pacific plate beneath the Wellington city region. The seismic line had ~1000 seismographs spaced between 50-100 m apart and the 500 kg shots were in 50 m-deep, drill holes. An exceptionally high-resolution image for the top of the subducting Pacific Plate at a depth of 20-25 km beneath the Wellington region is seen. In addition, on most of the shots are a pair of 10-14 Hz reflections between 27 and 29 s two-way-travel-time (twtt) at zero offset. The quality of this reflection pair varies from shot to shot. When converted to depth and ray-traced the best solution for these deep events is a west-dipping ( ~ 15 degrees) horizon at a depth of about 105 km. This is consistent with the dip of the upper surface of the plate beneath Wellington, and therefore we argue that the deep (~105 km) reflector is the base of the Pacific plate. On two of the shots another pair 5-8 Hz reflections can also be seen between 47 and 52 s, and the move-out of these events is consistent with them being S-wave reflections from the same 105 km deep, west-dipping, boundary for a Vp/Vs ~ 1.74. Both the P-and S-wave reflections occur in pairs of twtt-thickness of 2 and 5 s, respectively and appear to define a ~ 6-8 km thick channel at the base of the plate if the Vp/Vs ratio~ 5/2 or 2.5. Such a high value of Vp/Vs is consistent with the channel containing fluids or partial melt of an unknown percent. Although we can't rule out the double reflections in both P and S as being multiples

  16. Discovering the plates boundaries in the Mediterranean sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marinelli, Maurizio

    2017-04-01

    During the 8th class the students learn geology. We analyze the earth's layers, the earthquakes, the volcanoes and other natural phenomena like subduction and orogeny. We start with a global study but our goal is to focus on the crust to discover the plates boundaries, particularly the boundary between Eurasian and African Plate in the Mediterranean sea. It's very simple for the students to discover all the information using the Internet or the science book, but I want to make with them an exploration of earth science with the help of the natural phenomena we studied during the year. We connect with Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia ( http://www.ingv.it/en/ ) where we can find a map with the earthquakes happened in the last years in Italy and in the Mediterranean sea and the list of the main volcanoes. In this way we can draw a map of the mediterranean plates and we can talk about the past and the future of the Mediterranean sea, Europe and Africa based on our maps and on the Alps orogeny. Using youtube we can have a confirm of our hypothesis about the future of the Mediterranean sea (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uGcDed4xVD4 ). A good observation for the students is given by the fact that we live in Europe but actually we stay on the African plate. The boundary is 5 km north of our school and we can go and visit the place where it is possible to see the different height of the two plates.

  17. A diffuse plate boundary model for Indian Ocean tectonics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wiens, D. A.; Demets, C.; Gordon, R. G.; Stein, S.; Argus, D.

    1985-01-01

    It is suggested that motion along the virtually aseismic Owen fracture zone is negligible, so that Arabia and India are contained within a single Indo-Arabian plate divided from the Australian plate by a diffuse boundary. The boundary is a zone of concentrated seismicity and deformation commonly characterized as 'intraplate'. The rotation vector of Australia relative to Indo-Arabia is consistent with the seismologically observed 2 cm/yr of left-lateral strike-slip along the Ninetyeast Ridge, north-south compression in the Central Indian Ocean, and the north-south extension near Chagos.

  18. Lagrangian analysis of the laminar flat plate boundary layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gabr, Mohammad

    2016-10-01

    The flow properties at the leading edge of a flat plate represent a singularity to the Blasius laminar boundary layer equations; by applying the Lagrangian approach, the leading edge velocity profiles of the laminar boundary layer over a flat plate are studied. Experimental observations as well as the theoretical analysis show an exact Gaussian distribution curve as the original starting profile of the laminar flow. Comparisons between the Blasius solution and the Gaussian curve solution are carried out providing a new insight into the physics of the laminar flow.

  19. Late Miocene Pacific plate kinematic change explained with coupled global models of mantle and lithosphere dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stotz, I. L.; Iaffaldano, G.; Davies, D. R.

    2017-07-01

    The timing and magnitude of a Pacific plate motion change within the past 10 Ma remains enigmatic, due to the noise associated with finite-rotation data. Nonetheless, it has been hypothesized that this change was driven by the arrival of the Ontong Java Plateau (OJP) at the Melanesian arc and the consequent subduction polarity reversal. The uncertainties associated with the timing of this event, however, make it difficult to quantitatively demonstrate a dynamical association. Here, we first reconstruct the Pacific plate's absolute motion since the mid-Miocene (15 Ma), at high-temporal resolution, building on previous efforts to mitigate the impact of finite-rotation data noise. We find that the largest change in Pacific plate-motion direction occurred between 10 and 5 Ma, with the plate rotating clockwise. We subsequently develop and use coupled global numerical models of the mantle/lithosphere system to test hypotheses on the dynamics driving this change. These indicate that the arrival of the OJP at the Melanesian arc, between 10 and 5 Ma, followed by a subduction polarity reversal that marked the initiation of subduction of the Australian plate underneath the Pacific realm, were the key drivers of this kinematic change.

  20. Prototypical Concepts and Misconceptions of Plate Tectonic Boundaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sibley, D. F.; Patino, L. C.

    2003-12-01

    Students of geology encounter many prototypical/exemplar concepts* that include representative, but not necessarily defining, features and characteristics. This study of students' prototypical representations of plate tectonic boundaries indicates that their representations are rich sources of information about their misconceptions about plate tectonics. After lectures in plate tectonics and mountain building, 353 students in a general education geology class were asked to draw a continent-continent convergent boundary. For this study, a correct answer is defined as having the major features in correct proportions as depicted in the plate boundary diagrams on the USGS web. Fifty-two percent of the drawings were either incorrect or incomplete such that they could not be interpreted. Only 48% were readily interpretable, and of these 22% drew the boundary correctly, showing a thickening of crust where two continents collide. Thirty-three percent drew the boundary showing concave slabs of continental crust as one might imagine two pieces of firm rubber pushed together on a rigid surface and 45% depicted mountains as one might imagine inverted ice cream cones on a rigid plank. Twenty-one senior class geology majors and graduate students were given the same assignment. Forty-eight percent rendered a correct drawing, whereas 38% drew the same ice cream cone on a plank type picture that 45% of the general education students drew. In a second class of 12 geology majors, only 1 student drew a cross section of a continent-ocean boundary similar to standard representation. Four of 12 drew mountains on the top of continental crust over a subduction zone but did not draw a compensating mass within the crust or lithosphere. Prototypical drawings provide more information about students' concepts than do most multiple-choice questions. For example, sixty-two percent of theses students who drew mountains similar to foam rubber pads pushed together on a desk or ice cream cones on a

  1. Exhumation History of an Oblique Plate Boundary: Investigating Kaikoura Mountain-building within the Marlborough Fault System, NE South Island New Zealand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Collett, C.; Duvall, A. R.; Flowers, R. M.; Tucker, G. E.

    2015-12-01

    The Kaikoura Mountains stand high as topographic anomalies in the oblique Pacific-Australian plate boundary zone known as the Marlborough Fault System (MFS), NE South Island New Zealand. The base of both the Inland and Seaward Kaikoura Ranges are bound on the SE by major, steeply NW-dipping, right lateral, active strike-slips (Clarence and Hope faults of the MFS, respectively). Previous geologic mapping, observations of predominantly horizontal fault slip at the surface from GPS and offset Quaternary deposits, and uplift of marine terraces, provide evidence for shortening and mountain-building via distributed deformation off of the main MFS strike-slip faults. However, quantitative estimates of the magnitude and spatial patterns of exhumation and of the timing of mountain-building in the Kaikouras are needed to understand more fully the nature of oblique deformation in the MFS. We present new apatite and zircon (U-Th)/He ages from opposite sides of the Hope and Clarence faults, spanning over 2 km of relief within the Kaikoura Mountains to identify spatial and temporal changes in exhumation rates in relation to the adjacent faults. Young (~3 Ma) apatite He ages and rapid (potentially > 1 mm/yr) exhumation rates from opposite sides of the faults are consistent with previously mentioned evidence of recent, regional, distributed deformation off of the main MFS faults. Moreover, early Miocene zircon He ages imply that parts of this region experienced an earlier phase of fault-related exhumation. Large changes in zircon He ages across the faults from ~20 Ma to > 100 Ma support hypotheses that portions of the Marlborough Faults may be re-activated, early Miocene thrusts. The zircon data are also consistent with the hypothesis of an early Miocene initiation of the oblique Pacific-Australian plate boundary in this region. Evidence for this comes from a change in sedimentation during this time from fine marine sediments to coarse, terrigenous conglomerates. Observing more

  2. The Hawaii-Emperor Bend: Clearly a Record of Pacific Plate Motion Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wessel, P.; Harada, Y.; Kroenke, L. W.; Sterling, A.

    2003-12-01

    As most introductory textbooks will point out, the conventional explanation for the ˜120° change in the trends of the Hawaiian and Emperor chains is a ˜60° change in plate motion over a fixed plume in the mantle. Recently, however, new paleomagnetic and radiometric age data from the Emperor Seamounts have led some scientists to reject the conventional view of the origin of the Hawaii-Emperor bend in favor of a mobile plume. Yet, at the brink of being explained away as the mere consequence of a drifting plume, the fixed hotspot hypothesis now gains support from newly reported radiometric dates of rock samples from seamounts at the bend which reveal an age much older than expected. Unlike the previous younger age ( ˜43 Ma), the older age ( ˜47 Ma) allows the bend to be directly correlated with a period of pronounced, global tectonic reorganizations around Chron 21. Here we present a new Pacific absolute plate motion model, derived from 15 hotspot chains, which does not require hotspot drift in order to satisfy geometric and chronological constraints. By considering this absolute plate motion model with available Pacific paleomagnetic poles we find support for the notion that the spin axis was closer to the Hawaiian hotspot during the formation of the Emperor chain, and this interpretation (polar wander, not hotspot drift) also explains the paleomagnetic latitudes from the Emperor seamounts as well as the lack of coral reefs materials in the drill holes north of Koko Guyot. However, this interpretation is not unique, and drift cannot be summarily ruled out. Yet, if Pacific plumes are drifting then they appear to be moving in unison. Careful examination of the Pacific seafloor reveals additional Pacific trails with bends that appear to be contemporaneous with the Hawaii-Emperor Bend, although conclusive radiometric age data are lacking. Our plate motion model predicts hotspot tracks that fit these bends. Considering all these lines of evidence the fixed hotspot

  3. Oceanic broad multifault transform plate boundaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ligi, Marco; Bonatti, Enrico; Gasperini, Luca; Poliakov, Alexei N. B.

    2002-01-01

    Oceanic transform plate boundaries consist of a single, narrow (a few kilometers wide) strike-slip seismic zone offsetting two mid-ocean ridge segments. However, we define here a new class of oceanic transform boundaries, with broad complex multifault zones of deformation, similar to some continental strike-slip systems. Examples are the 750-km- long, 120-km-wide Andrew Bain transform on the Southwest Indian Ridge, and the Romanche transform, where the Mid-Atlantic Ridge is offset by a lens-shaped, ˜900-km- long, ˜100-km-wide sliver of deformed lithosphere bound by two major transform valleys. One of the valleys is seismically highly active and constitutes the present-day principal transform boundary. However, strike-slip seismic events also occur in the second valley and elsewhere in the deformed zone. Some of these events may be triggered by earthquakes from the principal boundary. Numerical modeling predicts the development of wide multiple transform boundaries when the age offset is above a threshold value of ˜30 m.y., i.e., in extra-long (>500 km) slow-slip transforms. Multiple boundaries develop so that strike-slip ruptures avoid very thick and strong lithosphere.

  4. A review of the tectonic evolution of the Northern Pacific and adjacent Cordilleran Orogen

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jakob, Johannes; Gaina, Carmen; Johnston, Stephen T.

    2014-05-01

    Numerous plate kinematic models for the North Pacific realm have been developed since the advent of plate tectonics in the early seventies (e.g Atwater (1970), Mammerickx and Sharman (1988)). Although published kinematic models are consistent with the broad scale features of the North Pacific, the link between plate motions and the evolution of the North American Cordillera remains poorly understood. Part of the problem lies in conflicting interpretations of geological versus paleomagnetic data sets, with the result being a lack of consensus regarding: the paleolocation of key geological units; the paleogeography of terrane formation and amalgamation; the motion, boundaries and even existence of oceanic plates; and the character (e.g. trend of subduction) and position of plate boundaries within the northern Pacific basin. Remnants of the Farallon and Kula plates, and some short-lived microplates, demonstrate the complicated tectonic evolution of the oceanic realm west of the North American margin (e.g. Rea and Dixon (1983); McCrory and Wilson (2013); Shephard et al. (2013)). The creation and destruction of major tectonic plates and microplates has presumably left a record in the Cordilleran orogen of western North America. However, working backward from the geological relationships to plate reconstructions remains difficult. Here we investigate the relationship between the plate motions of the Pacific Ocean and the terrane movements in the North American Cordillera by revising the marine magnetic and gravity anomalies of the northern Pacific. In particular, we reevaluate plate boundaries at times of major changes in plate geometry of the Pacific, Kula, Chinook and Farallon plates from C34n onward. Our focus is also on the plate geometries of the Resurrection, Eshamy and Siletz-Crescent plates during the time between anomaly C26 and C12, and the links between plate interactions and on-shore tectonic events recorded in the geological record of Vancouver Island

  5. 3-D subduction dynamics in the western Pacific: Mantle pressure, plate kinematics, and dynamic topography.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holt, A. F.; Royden, L.; Becker, T. W.; Faccenna, C.

    2017-12-01

    While it is well established that the slab pull of negatively buoyant oceanic plates is the primary driving force of plate tectonics, the dynamic "details" of subduction have proved difficult to pin down. We use the Philippine Sea Plate region of the western Pacific as a site to explore links between kinematic observables (e.g. topography and plate motions) and the dynamics of the subduction system (e.g. mantle flow, mantle pressure). To first order, the Philippine Sea Plate can be considered to be the central plate of a double slab system containing two slabs that dip in the same direction, to the west. This subduction configuration presents the opportunity to explore subduction dynamics in a setting where two closely spaced slabs interact via subduction-induced mantle flow and stresses transmitted through the intervening plate. We use a 3-D numerical approach (e.g. Holt et al., 2017), augmented by semi-analytical models (e.g. Jagoutz et al., 2017), to develop relationships between dynamic processes and kinematic properties, including plate velocities, lithospheric stress state, slab dip angles, and topography. When combined with subduction zone observables, this allows us to isolate the first order dynamic processes that are in operation in the Philippine Sea Plate region. Our results suggest that positive pressure build-up occurs in the asthenosphere between the two slabs (Izu-Bonin-Mariana and Ryukyu-Nankai), and that this is responsible for producing much of the observed kinematic variability in the region, including the steep dip of the Pacific slab at the Izu-Bonin-Mariana trench, as compared to the flat dip of the Pacific slab north of Japan. We then extend our understanding of the role of asthenospheric pressure to examine the forces responsible for the plate kinematics and dynamic topography of the entire Western Pacific subduction margin(s). References:Holt, A. F., Royden, L. H., Becker, T. W., 2017. Geophys. J. Int., 209, 250-265Jagoutz, O., Royden, L

  6. Global Dynamic Numerical Simulations of Plate Tectonic Reorganizations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morra, G.; Quevedo, L.; Butterworth, N.; Matthews, K. J.; Müller, D.

    2010-12-01

    We use a new numerical approach for global geodynamics to investigate the origin of present global plate motion and to identify the causes of the last two global tectonic reorganizations occurred about 50 and 100 million years ago (Ma) [1]. While the 50 Ma event is the most well-known global plate-mantle event, expressed by the bend in the Hawaiian-Emperor volcanic chain, a prominent plate reorganization at about 100 Ma, although presently little studied, is clearly indicated by a major bend in the fracture zones in the Indian Ocean and by a change in Pacific plate motion [2]. Our workflow involves turning plate reconstructions into surface meshes that are subsequently employed as initial conditions for global Boundary Element numerical models. The tectonic setting that anticipates the reorganizations is processed with the software GPlates, combining the 3D mesh of the paleo-plate morphology and the reconstruction of paleo-subducted slabs, elaborated from tectonic history [3]. All our models involve the entire planetary system, are fully dynamic, have free surface, are characterized by a spectacular computational speed due to the simultaneous use of the multi-pole algorithm and the Boundary Element formulation and are limited only by the use of sharp material property variations [4]. We employ this new tool to unravel the causes of plate tectonic reorganizations, producing and comparing global plate motion with the reconstructed ones. References: [1] Torsvik, T., Müller, R.D., Van der Voo, R., Steinberger, B., and Gaina, C., 2008, Global Plate Motion Frames: Toward a unified model: Reviews in Geophysics, VOL. 46, RG3004, 44 PP., 2008 [2] Wessel, P. and Kroenke, L.W. Pacific absolute plate motion since 145 Ma: An assessment of the fixed hot spot hypothesis. Journal of Geophysical Research, Vol 113, B06101, 2008 [3] L. Quevedo, G. Morra, R. D. Mueller. Parallel Fast Multipole Boundary Element Method for Crustal Dynamics, Proceeding 9th World Congress and 4th Asian

  7. New insights into North America-Pacific Plate boundary deformation from Lake Tahoe, Salton Sea and southern Baja California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brothers, Daniel Stephen

    Five studies along the Pacific-North America (PA-NA) plate boundary offer new insights into continental margin processes, the development of the PA-NA tectonic margin and regional earthquake hazards. This research is based on the collection and analysis of several new marine geophysical and geological datasets. Two studies used seismic CHIRP surveys and sediment coring in Fallen Leaf Lake (FLL) and Lake Tahoe to constrain tectonic and geomorphic processes in the lakes, but also the slip-rate and earthquake history along the West Tahoe-Dollar Point Fault. CHIRP profiles image vertically offset and folded strata that record deformation associated with the most recent event (MRE). Radiocarbon dating of organic material extracted from piston cores constrain the age of the MRE to be between 4.1--4.5 k.y. B.P. Offset of Tioga aged glacial deposits yield a slip rate of 0.4--0.8 mm/yr. An ancillary study in FLL determined that submerged, in situ pine trees that date to between 900-1250 AD are related to a medieval megadrought in the Lake Tahoe Basin. The timing and severity of this event match medieval megadroughts observed in the western United States and in Europe. CHIRP profiles acquired in the Salton Sea, California provide new insights into the processes that control pull-apart basin development and earthquake hazards along the southernmost San Andreas Fault. Differential subsidence (>10 mm/yr) in the southern sea suggests the existence of northwest-dipping basin-bounding faults near the southern shoreline. In contrast to previous models, the rapid subsidence and fault architecture observed in the southern part of the sea are consistent with experimental models for pull-apart basins. Geophysical surveys imaged more than 15 ˜N15°E oriented faults, some of which have produced up to 10 events in the last 2-3 kyr. Potentially 2 of the last 5 events on the southern San Andreas Fault (SAF) were synchronous with rupture on offshore faults, but it appears that ruptures on

  8. Using Global Plate Velocity Boundary Conditions for Embedded Regional Geodynamic Models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taramon Gomez, Jorge; Morgan, Jason; Perez-Gussinye, Marta

    2015-04-01

    The treatment of far-field boundary conditions is one of the most poorly resolved issues for regional modeling of geodynamic processes. In viscous flow, the choice of far-field boundary conditions often strongly shapes the large-scale structure of a geosimulation. The mantle velocity field along the sidewalls and base of a modeling region is typically much more poorly known than the geometry of past global motions of the surface plates as constrained by global plate motion reconstructions. For regional rifting models it has become routine to apply highly simplified 'plate spreading' or 'uniform rifting' boundary conditions to a 3-D model that limits its ability to simulate the geodynamic evolution of a specific rifted margin. One way researchers are exploring the sensitivity of regional models to uncertain boundary conditions is to use a nested modeling approach in which a global model is used to determine a large-scale flow pattern that is imposed as a constraint along the boundaries of the region to be modeled. Here we explore the utility of a different approach that takes advantage of the ability of finite element models to use unstructured meshes than can embed much higher resolution sub-regions within a spherical global mesh. In our initial project to validate this approach, we create a global spherical mesh in which a higher resolution sub-region is created around the nascent South Atlantic Rifting Margin. Global Plate motion BCs and plate boundaries are applied for the time of the onset of rifting, continuing through several 10s of Ma of rifting. Thermal, compositional, and melt-related buoyancy forces are only non-zero within the high-resolution subregion, elsewhere, motions are constrained by surface plate-motion constraints. The total number of unknowns needed to solve an embedded regional model with this approach is less than 1/3 larger than that needed for a structured-mesh solution on a Cartesian or spherical cap sub-regional mesh. Here we illustrate

  9. Air flow in the boundary layer near a plate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dryden, Hugh L

    1937-01-01

    The published data on the distribution of speed near a thin flat plate with sharp leading edge placed parallel to the flow (skin friction plate) are reviewed and the results of some additional measurements are described. The purpose of the experiments was to study the basic phenomena of boundary-layer flow under simple conditions.

  10. Crustal gravitational potential energy change at the convergent plate boundary near Taiwan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lo, C.; Hsu, S.

    2003-12-01

    The Taiwan orogen has formed due to the convergence between the Philippine Sea plate and Eurasian plate. Numerous earthquakes are occurring along the active convergent plate boundary in eastern Taiwan. To the northeast, the Philippine Sea plates is subducting northwards beneath the Ryukyu Arc. To the south, the Eurasian plate is subducting eastwards beneath the Luzon Arc. The plate interaction has caused crustal deformation and produced earthquakes. The earthquakes have caused radial permanent displacement of the crust and have altered the crustal gravitational potential energy. Here we use the earthquake source mechanisms, determined by the Broadband Array in Taiwan for Seismology (BATs) from 1995 to 2003, to calculate the crustal gravitational potential energy (GPE) change and discuss their tectonic implication along the convergent plate boundary. In Ilan Plain, the westernmost Okinawa Trough, it shows a crustal GPE loss. It is related to the crustal subsidence because of the backarc extension of the Okinawa Trough. In contrast, due to the Philippine Sea plate subucting northwards beneath Eurasian Plate, the Ryukyu convergent boundary shows systematic crustal GPE gain. Near Taiwan, the crustal GPE change is gained, indicating the collisional convergence of the Luzon Arc. To the south of Taiwan, along the Luzon Arc the crustal GPE is also gain, representing the initial uplifting of the Taiwan mountain belt.

  11. Imaging megathrust zone and Yakutat/Pacific plate interface in Alaska subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Y.; Abers, G. A.; Li, J.; Christensen, D. H.; Calkins, J. A.

    2012-12-01

    We image the subducted slab underneath a 450 km long transect of the Alaska subduction zone. Dense stations in southern Alaska are set up to investigate (1) the geometry and velocity structure of the downgoing plate and their relation to slab seismicity, and (2) the interplate coupled zone where the great 1964 (magnitude 9.3) had greatest rupture. The joint teleseismic migration of two array datasets (MOOS, Multidisciplinary Observations of Onshore Subduction, and BEAAR, Broadband Experiment Across the Alaska Range) based on teleseismic receiver functions (RFs) using the MOOS data reveal a shallow-dipping prominent low-velocity layer at ~25-30 km depth in southern Alaska. Modeling of these RF amplitudes shows a thin (3-6.5 km) low-velocity layer (shear wave velocity less than 3 km/s), which is ~20-30% slower than normal oceanic crustal velocities, between the subducted slab and the overriding North America plate. The observed low-velocity megathrust layer (with Vp/Vs ratio exceeding 2.0) may be due to a thick sediment input from the trench in combination of elevated pore fluid pressure in the channel. The subducted crust below the low-velocity channel has gabbroic velocities with a thickness of 11-15 km. Both velocities and thickness of the low-velocity channel abruptly increase as the slab bends in central Alaska, which agrees with previously published RF results. Our image also includes an unusually thick low-velocity crust subducting with a ~20 degree dip down to 130 km depth at approximately 200 km inland beneath central Alaska. The unusual nature of this subducted segment has been suggested to be due to the subduction of the Yakutat terrane. Subduction of this buoyant crust could explain the shallow dip of the thrust zone beneath southern Alaska. We also show a clear image of the Yakutat and Pacific plate subduction beneath the Kenai Peninsula, and the along-strike boundary between them at megathrust depths. Our imaged western edge of the Yakutat terrane, at

  12. The lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary beneath the South Island of New Zealand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hua, Junlin; Fischer, Karen M.; Savage, Martha K.

    2018-02-01

    Lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB) properties beneath the South Island of New Zealand have been imaged by Sp receiver function common-conversion point stacking. In this transpressional boundary between the Australian and Pacific plates, dextral offset on the Alpine fault and convergence have occurred for the past 20 My, with the Alpine fault now bounded by Australian plate subduction to the south and Pacific plate subduction to the north. Using data from onland seismometers, especially the 29 broadband stations of the New Zealand permanent seismic network (GeoNet), we obtained 24,971 individual receiver functions by extended-time multi-taper deconvolution, and mapped them to three-dimensional space using a Fresnel zone approximation. Pervasive strong positive Sp phases are observed in the LAB depth range indicated by surface wave tomography. These phases are interpreted as conversions from a velocity decrease across the LAB. In the central South Island, the LAB is observed to be deeper and broader to the northwest of the Alpine fault. The deeper LAB to the northwest of the Alpine fault is consistent with models in which oceanic lithosphere attached to the Australian plate was partially subducted, or models in which the Pacific lithosphere has been underthrust northwest past the Alpine fault. Further north, a zone of thin lithosphere with a strong and vertically localized LAB velocity gradient occurs to the northwest of the fault, juxtaposed against a region of anomalously weak LAB conversions to the southeast of the fault. This structure could be explained by lithospheric blocks with contrasting LAB properties that meet beneath the Alpine fault, or by the effects of Pacific plate subduction. The observed variations in LAB properties indicate strong modification of the LAB by the interplay of convergence and strike-slip deformation along and across this transpressional plate boundary.

  13. Numerical modeling of the transitional boundary layer over a flat plate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ivanov, Dimitry; Chorny, Andrei

    2015-11-01

    Our example is connected with fundamental research on understanding how an initially laminar boundary layer becomes turbulent. We have chosen the flow over a flat plate as a prototype for boundary-layer flows around bodies. Special attention was paid to the near-wall region in order to capture all levels of the boundary layer. In this study, the numerical software package OpenFOAM has been used in order to solve the flow field. The results were used in a comparative study with data obtained from Large Eddy Simulation (LES). The composite SGS-wall model is presently incorporated into a computer code suitable for the LES of developing flat-plate boundary layers. Presently this model is extended to the LES of the zero-pressure gradient, flat-plate turbulent boundary layer. In current study the time discretization is based on a second order Crank-Nicolson/Adams-Bashforth method. LES solver using Smagorinsky and the one-equation LES turbulence models. The transition models significantly improve the prediction of the onset location compared to the fully turbulent models.LES methods appear to be the most promising new tool for the design and analysis of flow devices including transition regions of the turbulent flow.

  14. Flat Plate Boundary Layer Stimulation Using Trip Wires and Hama Strips

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peguero, Charles; Henoch, Charles; Hrubes, James; Fredette, Albert; Roberts, Raymond; Huyer, Stephen

    2017-11-01

    Water tunnel experiments on a flat plate at zero angle of attack were performed to investigate the effect of single roughness elements, i.e., trip wires and Hama strips, on the transition to turbulence. Boundary layer trips are traditionally used in scale model testing to force a boundary layer to transition from laminar to turbulent flow at a single location to aid in scaling of flow characteristics. Several investigations of trip wire effects exist in the literature, but there is a dearth of information regarding the influence of Hama strips on the flat plate boundary layer. The intent of this investigation is to better understand the effects of boundary layer trips, particularly Hama strips, and to investigate the pressure-induced drag of both styles of boundary layer trips. Untripped and tripped boundary layers along a flat plate at a range of flow speeds were characterized with multiple diagnostic measurements in the NUWC/Newport 12-inch water tunnel. A wide range of Hama strip and wire trip thicknesses were used. Measurements included dye flow visualization, direct skin friction and parasitic drag force, boundary layer profiles using LDV, wall shear stress fluctuations using hot film anemometry, and streamwise pressure gradients. Test results will be compared to the CFD and boundary layer model results as well as the existing body of work. Conclusions, resulting in guidance for application of Hama strips in model scale experiments and non-dimensional predictions of pressure drag will be presented.

  15. Circum-Pacific diatomite deposits

    SciTech Connect

    North, F.K.

    1986-07-01

    Deformed diatomites of assured identification are all Oligocene or younger. They are not to be interpreted with oceanic diatom oozes as analogs, nor with California's Monterey Formation as prototype. All examples, apart from the unique Monterey, are deposits of relatively shallow waters at convergent plate or microplate boundaries: in arc-trench gaps or (less importantly) in immediate back-arc belts. Tethyan examples, along a collision boundary, are now slivers in the late stages of external flysch along the fronts of Alpine thrust belts. Circum-Pacific examples, at ocean-continent subduction boundaries, are preserved only on mountainous islands or peninsulas, the uplift (not folding) ofmore » which has protected the diatomites and their overlying evaporites from subduction. The control is tectonic and volcanic, not by water temperature or eustatism. Preserved deposits appear to be restricted to particular segments of the Pacific boundary delineated by Benioff zones having some significant minimum dip. The unique Monterey Formation owes its spectacular development and preservation to the conversion of an arc-trench boundary to a transform boundary, at a triple junction, before the diatomite was deposited. The Monterey's importance as an oil source sediment does not stem from its true diatomite component. Other Circum-Pacific diatomites are of negligible significance to the petroleum geologist, but are potentially minable for other uses in Japan, the Philippines, and Peru, and possibly in Chile.« less

  16. Constraints from Seamounts on Pacific Plate or Plume Motion Prior to 80 Ma.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Konter, J. G.; Koppers, A. A. P.; Jackson, M. G.; Finlayson, V.; Konrad, K.

    2015-12-01

    The Hawaii-Emperor and Louisville hotspot tracks have long dominated the data set constraining absolute plate motion models. However, prior to ~80 Ma, multiple shorter, discontinuous hotspot trails and oceanic plateaus have been used to constrain absolute plate motion. Based on this earlier work, a clear Hawaii-Emperor style bend seems apparent around 100 Ma in the West Pacific Seamount Province (WPSP). More importantly, the ongoing debate on a plate versus plume motion origin for the Hawaii-Emperor Bend is applicable here, as the ~100 Ma bend may correspond to a global plate reorganization (Matthews et al., EPSL, 2012). Data for a comparison of bends comes from three groups with similar geographic patterns: 1) Mid-Pacific Mountains, Line Islands; 2) Shatsky Rise, Hess Rise, Musician and Wentworth Seamounts; and 3) Wake Seamounts, Marshall Islands, Magellan Seamounts. Both groups 1 and 2 feature a large igneous province (LIP) at their oldest end: Shatsky Rise and the Mid-Pacific Mountains. According to plate reconstructions these LIPs were constructed near all-ridge triple junctions, thus potential plume-ridge interactions need to be clarified before these LIPs can be used to define an absolute mantle reference frame. In contrast, the volcanoes of the third group (Wake, Marshall, Magellan) did erupt truly intra-plate and we therefore argue that this group provides a constraint on plate motion beyond 80 Ma that is independent of plume-ridge interactions. Since the volcanoes in this group are part of the WPSP, which is densely populated with seamounts, a combination of 40Ar/39Ar ages and Sr-Nd-Pb-Hf isotopes is needed to distinguish different hotspot tracks in this region. Backtracking each volcano through its age to its original eruptive location and using compositional color-coding, reveals groupings and patterns that vary by plate motion model, while the temporal patterns of backtracked locations inform us about potential plume motions.

  17. Boundary scavenging in the Pacific Ocean - A comparison of Be-10 and Pa-231

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anderson, R. F.; Lao, Y.; Broecker, W. S.; Trumbore, S. E.; Hofmann, H. J.

    1990-01-01

    Measurements of U, Th, Pa-231, and Be-10 concentrations were conducted in Holocene sediments from several sites representing open-ocean and ocean-margin environments in the Pacific Ocean. The results show that boundary scavenging plays a major role in the removal of Be-10 from the Pacific. Deposition of Be-10 is more than an order of magnitude greater at margin sites than at deep central Pacific sites, while Pa-231 is 4- to 5-fold greater at margin sites. The factors controling boundary scavenging of Pa and Be are discussed.

  18. Diffuse Pacific-North American plate boundary: 1000 km of dextral shear inferred from modeling geodetic data

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Parsons, T.; Thatcher, W.

    2011-01-01

    Geodetic measurements tell us that the eastern part of the Basin and Range Province expands in an east-west direction relative to stable North America, whereas the western part of the province moves to the northwest. We develop three-dimensional finite element representations of the western United States lithosphere in an effort to understand the global positioning system (GPS) signal. The models are constrained by known bounding-block velocities and topography, and Basin and Range Province deformation is represented by simple plastic (thermal creep) rheology. We show that active Basin and Range spreading by gravity collapse is expected to have a strong southward component that does not match the GPS signal. We can reconcile the gravitational component of displacement with observed velocity vectors if the Pacific plate applies northwest-directed shear stress to the Basin and Range via the Sierra Nevada block. This effect reaches at least 1000 km east of the San Andreas fault in our models. ?? 2011 Geological Society of America.

  19. Control of boundary layer transition location and plate vibration in the presence of an external acoustic field

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Maestrello, L.; Grosveld, F. W.

    1991-01-01

    The experiment is aimed at controlling the boundary layer transition location and the plate vibration when excited by a flow and an upstream sound source. Sound has been found to affect the flow at the leading edge and the response of a flexible plate in a boundary layer. Because the sound induces early transition, the panel vibration is acoustically coupled to the turbulent boundary layer by the upstream radiation. Localized surface heating at the leading edge delays the transition location downstream of the flexible plate. The response of the plate excited by a turbulent boundary layer (without sound) shows that the plate is forced to vibrate at different frequencies and with different amplitudes as the flow velocity changes indicating that the plate is driven by the convective waves of the boundary layer. The acoustic disturbances induced by the upstream sound dominate the response of the plate when the boundary layer is either turbulent or laminar. Active vibration control was used to reduce the sound induced displacement amplitude of the plate.

  20. Fractures, not Plumes, Have Controlled Major Seamount Volcanism in the Pacific over 170 Million Years

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Natland, J. H.; Winterer, E. L.

    2003-12-01

    The distribution of guyots and atolls and large volcanic islands on the Pacific plate can be used to outline the likely connection between stresses acting on the plate and the gradual development of large, linear volcanic chains over the past 170 Ma. We construe three general periods with different stress regimes in the history of the Pacific plate. 1) During the Jurassic and Early Cretaceous, the Pacific plate was surrounded by ridge segments and there were no major stress alignments within it. Within-plate volcanism thus assumed the scattered arrangement for the condition of no tectonic stress (1), and the large Magellan and Wake seamount clusters formed. Near the eastern boundaries of the plate, complex and shifting patterns of ridge reorganization dictated formation of very long, splayed, near-axis ridges such as Horizon Guyot and Necker Ridge. 2) At about 90 Ma, the growing middle-aged Pacific plate achieved its first persistent stress regime with the formation of subduction boundaries along its western or northwestern margin. The plate was no longer static but began to move over the asthenosphere and into the mantle. Subduction boundaries and the overall direction of subduction are uncertain, but this imparted a general yet not fully stable component of tension across the plate, producing the NNW Gilbert-Marshall, Line and Emperor Seamount ridges, generally orthogonal to the overall direction of least principal stress. The Line Island seamount chain, being near ridge axes, sustained a variable stress regime. It thus has no age progression of rocks dated between 70-90 Ma (2), great width, and a dual orientations of ridges. 3) By 47 Ma, nearly half of the boundaries of the Pacific plate now were trenches spanning from the Aleutians to New Zealand. In addition, northward migration of the Indian plate and Australia caught a major portion of the westerly moving Pacific plate between the northeast corner of the Tonga Trench and the Aleutians. The plate could not

  1. Structure and lithology of the Japan Trench subduction plate boundary fault

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kirkpatrick, James D.; Rowe, Christie D.; Ujiie, Kohtaro; Moore, J. Casey; Regalla, Christine; Remitti, Francesca; Toy, Virginia; Wolfson-Schwehr, Monica; Kameda, Jun; Bose, Santanu; Chester, Frederick M.

    2015-01-01

    The 2011 Mw9.0 Tohoku-oki earthquake ruptured to the trench with maximum coseismic slip located on the shallow portion of the plate boundary fault. To investigate the conditions and physical processes that promoted slip to the trench, Integrated Ocean Drilling Program Expedition 343/343T sailed 1 year after the earthquake and drilled into the plate boundary ˜7 km landward of the trench, in the region of maximum slip. Core analyses show that the plate boundary décollement is localized onto an interval of smectite-rich, pelagic clay. Subsidiary structures are present in both the upper and lower plates, which define a fault zone ˜5-15m thick. Fault rocks recovered from within the clay-rich interval contain a pervasive scaly fabric defined by anastomosing, polished, and lineated surfaces with two predominant orientations. The scaly fabric is crosscut in several places by discrete contacts across which the scaly fabric is truncated and rotated, or different rocks are juxtaposed. These contacts are inferred to be faults. The plate boundary décollement therefore contains structures resulting from both distributed and localized deformation. We infer that the formation of both of these types of structures is controlled by the frictional properties of the clay: the distributed scaly fabric formed at low strain rates associated with velocity-strengthening frictional behavior, and the localized faults formed at high strain rates characterized by velocity-weakening behavior. The presence of multiple discrete faults resulting from seismic slip within the décollement suggests that rupture to the trench may be characteristic of this margin.

  2. Simulating wave-turbulence on thin elastic plates with arbitrary boundary conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Rees, Wim M.; Mahadevan, L.

    2016-11-01

    The statistical characteristics of interacting waves are described by the theory of wave turbulence, with the study of deep water gravity wave turbulence serving as a paradigmatic physical example. Here we consider the elastic analog of this problem in the context of flexural waves arising from vibrations of a thin elastic plate. Such flexural waves generate the unique sounds of so-called thunder machines used in orchestras - thin metal plates that make a thunder-like sound when forcefully shaken. Wave turbulence in elastic plates is typically investigated numerically using spectral simulations with periodic boundary conditions, which are not very realistic. We will present the results of numerical simulations of the dynamics of thin elastic plates in physical space, with arbitrary shapes, boundary conditions, anisotropy and inhomogeneity, and show first results on wave turbulence beyond the conventionally studied rectangular plates. Finally, motivated by a possible method to measure ice-sheet thicknesses in the open ocean, we will further discuss the behavior of a vibrating plate when floating on an inviscid fluid.

  3. Spatio-temporal mapping of plate boundary faults in California using geodetic imaging

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Donnellan, Andrea; Arrowsmith, Ramon; DeLong, Stephen B.

    2017-01-01

    The Pacific–North American plate boundary in California is composed of a 400-km-wide network of faults and zones of distributed deformation. Earthquakes, even large ones, can occur along individual or combinations of faults within the larger plate boundary system. While research often focuses on the primary and secondary faults, holistic study of the plate boundary is required to answer several fundamental questions. How do plate boundary motions partition across California faults? How do faults within the plate boundary interact during earthquakes? What fraction of strain accumulation is relieved aseismically and does this provide limits on fault rupture propagation? Geodetic imaging, broadly defined as measurement of crustal deformation and topography of the Earth’s surface, enables assessment of topographic characteristics and the spatio-temporal behavior of the Earth’s crust. We focus here on crustal deformation observed with continuous Global Positioning System (GPS) data and Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) from NASA’s airborne UAVSAR platform, and on high-resolution topography acquired from lidar and Structure from Motion (SfM) methods. Combined, these measurements are used to identify active structures, past ruptures, transient motions, and distribution of deformation. The observations inform estimates of the mechanical and geometric properties of faults. We discuss five areas in California as examples of different fault behavior, fault maturity and times within the earthquake cycle: the M6.0 2014 South Napa earthquake rupture, the San Jacinto fault, the creeping and locked Carrizo sections of the San Andreas fault, the Landers rupture in the Eastern California Shear Zone, and the convergence of the Eastern California Shear Zone and San Andreas fault in southern California. These examples indicate that distribution of crustal deformation can be measured using interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR), Global Navigation

  4. The Plate Boundary Observatory Cascadia Network: Development and Installation of a Large Scale Real-time GPS Network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Austin, K. E.; Blume, F.; Berglund, H. T.; Feaux, K.; Gallaher, W. W.; Hodgkinson, K. M.; Mattioli, G. S.; Mencin, D.

    2014-12-01

    The EarthScope Plate Boundary Observatory (PBO), through a NSF-ARRA supplement, has enhanced the geophysical infrastructure in in the Pacific Northwest by upgrading a total of 282 Plate Boundary Observatory GPS stations to allow the collection and distribution of high-rate (1 Hz), low-latency (<1 s) data streams (RT-GPS). These upgraded stations supplemented the original 100 RT-GPS stations in the PBO GPS network. The addition of the new RT-GPS sites in Cascadia should spur new volcano and earthquake research opportunities in an area of great scientific interest and high geophysical hazard. Streaming RT-GPS data will enable researchers to detect and investigate strong ground motion during large geophysical events, including a possible plate-interface earthquake, which has implications for earthquake hazard mitigation. A Mw 6.9 earthquake occurred on March 10, 2014, off the coast of northern California. As a response, UNAVCO downloaded high-rate GPS data from Plate Boundary Observatory stations within 500 km of the epicenter of the event, providing a good test of network performance.In addition to the 282 stations upgraded to real-time, 22 new meteorological instruments were added to existing PBO stations. Extensive testing of BGAN satellite communications systems has been conducted to support the Cascadia RT-GPS upgrades and the installation of three BGAN satellite fail over systems along the Cascadia margin will allow for the continuation of data flow in the event of a loss of primary communications during in a large geophysical event or other interruptions in commercial cellular networks. In summary, with these additional upgrades in the Cascadia region, the PBO RT-GPS network will increase to 420 stations. Upgrades to the UNAVCO data infrastructure included evaluation and purchase of the Trimble Pivot Platform, servers, and additional hardware for archiving the high rate data, as well as testing and implementation of GLONASS and Trimble RTX positioning on the

  5. Mantle dynamics and generation of a geochemical mantle boundary along the East Pacific Rise - Pacific/Antarctic ridge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Guo-Liang; Chen, Li-Hui; Li, Shi-Zhen

    2013-12-01

    A large-scale mantle compositional discontinuity was identified along the East Pacific Rise (EPR) and the Pacific-Antarctic Ridge (PAR) with an inferred transition located at the EPR 23°S-32°S. Because of the EPR-Easter hotspot interactions in this area, the nature of this geochemical discontinuity remains unclear. IODP Sites U1367 and U1368 drilled into the ocean crust that was accreted at ∼33.5 Ma and ∼13.5 Ma, respectively, between 28°S and 30°S on the EPR. We use lavas from Sites U1367 and U1368 to track this mantle discontinuity away from the EPR. The mantle sources for basalts at Sites U1367 and U1368 represent, respectively, northern and southern Pacific mantle sub-domains in terms of Sr-Nd-Pb-Hf isotopes. The significant isotopic differences between the two IODP sites are consistent with addition of ancient subduction-processed ocean crust to the south Pacific mantle sub-domain. Our modeling result shows that a trace element pattern similar to that of U1368 E-MORB can be formed by melting a subduction-processed typical N-MORB. The trace element and isotope compositions for Site U1368 MORBs can be formed by mixing a HIMU mantle end-member with Site U1367 MORBs. Comparison of our data with those from the EPR-PAR shows a geochemical mantle boundary near the Easter microplate that separates the Pacific upper mantle into northern and southern sub-domains. On the basis of reconstruction of initial locations of the ocean crust at the two sites, we find that the mantle boundary has moved northward to the Easter microplate since before 33.5 Ma. A model, in which along-axis asthenospheric flow to where asthenosphere consumption is strongest, explains the movement of the apparent mantle boundary.

  6. Revised Pacific-Antarctic plate motions and geophysics of the Menard Fracture Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Croon, Marcel B.; Cande, Steven C.; Stock, Joann M.

    2008-07-01

    A reconnaissance survey of multibeam bathymetry and magnetic anomaly data of the Menard Fracture Zone allows for significant refinement of plate motion history of the South Pacific over the last 44 million years. The right-stepping Menard Fracture Zone developed at the northern end of the Pacific-Antarctic Ridge within a propagating rift system that generated the Hudson microplate and formed the conjugate Henry and Hudson Troughs as a response to a major plate reorganization ˜45 million years ago. Two splays, originally about 30 to 35 km apart, narrowed gradually to a corridor of 5 to 10 km width, while lineation azimuths experienced an 8° counterclockwise reorientation owing to changes in spreading direction between chrons C13o and C6C (33 to 24 million years ago). We use the improved Pacific-Antarctic plate motions to analyze the development of the southwest end of the Pacific-Antarctic Ridge. Owing to a 45° counterclockwise reorientation between chrons C27 and C20 (61 to 44 million years ago) this section of the ridge became a long transform fault connected to the Macquarie Triple Junction. Following a clockwise change starting around chron C13o (33 million years ago), the transform fault opened. A counterclockwise change starting around chron C10y (28 millions years ago) again led to a long transform fault between chrons C6C and C5y (24 to 10 million years ago). A second period of clockwise reorientation starting around chron C5y (10 million years ago) put the transform fault into extension, forming an array of 15 en echelon transform faults and short linking spreading centers.

  7. New observations on mid-plate volcanism and the tectonic history of the Pacific plate, Tahiti to Easter microplate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Searle, R. C.; Francheteau, J.; Cornaglia, B.

    1995-04-01

    -echelon features. The Austral Fracture Zone is the only major fracture zone crossed in our transit, and here is characterised by four fossil transform strands. Its marked position on the AAPG and GEBCO maps is found to be in error. Finally, we found that the expected change from NNW- to NNE-trending spreading fabric at chron 6C did not occur in a clear-cut way, as predicted by earlier tectonic histories of the Pacific. Instead, the post-chron 6C fabric oscillates in a confused way between NNE and NNW, suggesting to us that this area has been characterised by an unstable plate boundary, probably associated with a succession of propagating rifts or microplates from chron 6C to the present.

  8. Geological process of the slow earthquakes -A hypothesis from an ancient plate boundary fault rock

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kitamura, Y.; Kimura, G.; Kawabata, K.

    2012-12-01

    We present an integrated model of the deformation along the subduction plate boundary from the trench to the seismogenic zone. Over years of field based research in the Shimanto Belt accretionary complex, southwest Japan, yielded breaking-through discoveries on plate boundary processes, for example, the first finding of pseudotachylyte in the accretionary prism (Ikesawa et al., 2003). Our aim here is to unveil the geological aspects of slow earthquakes and the related plate boundary processes. Studied tectonic mélanges in the Shimanto Belt are regarded as fossils of plate boundary fault zone in subduction zone. We traced material from different depths along subduction channel using samples from on-land outcrops and ocean drilling cores. As a result, a series of progressive deformation down to the down-dip limit of the seismogenic zone was revealed. Detailed geological survey and structural analyses enabled us to separate superimposed deformation events during subduction. Material involved in the plate boundary deformation is mainly an alternation of sand and mud. As they have different competency and are suffered by simple shear stress field, sandstones break apart in flowing mudstones. We distinguished several stages of these deformations in sandstones and recognized progress in the intensity of deformation with increment of underthrusting. It is also known that the studied Mugi mélange bears pseudotachylyte in its upper bounding fault. Our conclusion illustrates that the subduction channel around the depth of the seismogenic zone forms a thick plate boundary fault zone, where there is a clear segregation in deformation style: a fast and episodic slip at the upper boundary fault and a slow and continuous deformation within the zone. The former fast deformation corresponds to the plate boundary earthquakes and the latter to the slow earthquakes. We further examined numerically whether this plate boundary fault rock is capable of releasing seismic moment enough to

  9. Weak incident shock interactions with Mach 8 laminar boundary layers. [of flat plate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kaufman, L. G., II; Johnson, C. B.

    1974-01-01

    Weak shock-wave interactions with boundary layers on a flat plate were investigated experimentally in Mach 8 variable-density tunnel for plate-length Reynolds numbers. The undisturbed boundary layers were laminar over the entire plate length. Pressure and heat-transfer distributions were obtained for wedge-generated incident shock waves that resulted in pressure rises ranging from 1.36 to 4.46 (both nonseparated and separated boundary-layer flows). The resulting heat-transfer amplifications ranged from 1.45 to 14. The distributions followed established trends for nonseparated flows, for incipient separation, and for laminar free-interaction pressure rises. The experimental results corroborated established trends for the extent of the pressure rise and for certain peak heat-transfer correlations.

  10. Electromagnetic imaging the of the Pacific-North American plate boundary in central California, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wheelock, B. D.; Constable, S.; Key, K. W.

    2010-12-01

    The continental margin of central California lies adjacent to a segment of the San Andreas fault (SAF) that exhibits a transition between locked behavior south of the town of Cholame, and freely slipping (creeping) behavior north of the town of Parkfield. Recent reports of non-volcanic tremor (NVT) near the town of Cholame represent the first observation of NVT in a strike-slip environment. Dense clusters of tremor episodes located at the northern limit of the locked section of the SAF were found to originate within the ductile lower crust at depths between 15 and 30~km, and have been interpreted as evidence of high pore fluid pressure. An excess of fluids in this region is likely given its history of subduction, which transports large quantities of water into the forearc crust and mantle. We present a study that uses deep electromagnetic imaging methods to estimate the abundance and distribution of pore fluids at depths associated with non-volcanic tremor. This study extends a previously collected terrestrial profile of magnetotelluric (MT) data (Becken et al. 2008, Geophysical Journal International) into the offshore environment. We deployed 21 seafloor instruments that collected controlled-source electromagnetic (CSEM) and MT data in a line extending from the coast near Morro Bay, across the continental shelf, and out onto the Pacific plate. The marine MT data results in apparent resistivity and phase estimates at periods between 1~s and 20,000~s, sufficient for probing the upper 100~km of regional conductivity. A significant coast effect, marked by asymptotic behavior in the TE mode of the MT responses, is observed at the deep water sites. This necessitates accurate bathymetry modeling when inverting. The CSEM transmitter was towed by all receivers broadcasting a compact broadband binary waveform with a 0.25~Hz fundamental frequency. The controlled-source signal is observed above the noisefloor at source-receiver offsets up to 6~km, which provides constraints

  11. Data Access and Web Services at the EarthScope Plate Boundary Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matykiewicz, J.; Anderson, G.; Henderson, D.; Hodgkinson, K.; Hoyt, B.; Lee, E.; Persson, E.; Torrez, D.; Smith, J.; Wright, J.; Jackson, M.

    2007-12-01

    The EarthScope Plate Boundary Observatory (PBO) at UNAVCO, Inc., part of the NSF-funded EarthScope project, is designed to study the three-dimensional strain field resulting from deformation across the active boundary zone between the Pacific and North American plates in the western United States. To meet these goals, PBO will install 880 continuous GPS stations, 103 borehole strainmeter stations, and five laser strainmeters, as well as manage data for 209 previously existing continuous GPS stations and one previously existing laser strainmeter. UNAVCO provides access to data products from these stations, as well as general information about the PBO project, via the PBO web site (http://pboweb.unavco.org). GPS and strainmeter data products can be found using a variety of access methods, incuding map searches, text searches, and station specific data retrieval. In addition, the PBO construction status is available via multiple mapping interfaces, including custom web based map widgets and Google Earth. Additional construction details can be accessed from PBO operational pages and station specific home pages. The current state of health for the PBO network is available with the statistical snap-shot, full map interfaces, tabular web based reports, and automatic data mining and alerts. UNAVCO is currently working to enhance the community access to this information by developing a web service framework for the discovery of data products, interfacing with operational engineers, and exposing data services to third party participants. In addition, UNAVCO, through the PBO project, provides advanced data management and monitoring systems for use by the community in operating geodetic networks in the United States and beyond. We will demonstrate these systems during the AGU meeting, and we welcome inquiries from the community at any time.

  12. Owen Fracture Zone: The Arabia-India plate boundary unveiled

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fournier, M.; Chamot-Rooke, N.; Rodriguez, M.; Huchon, P.; Petit, C.; Beslier, M. O.; Zaragosi, S.

    2011-02-01

    We surveyed the Owen Fracture Zone at the boundary between the Arabia and India plates in the NW Indian Ocean using a high-resolution multibeam echo-sounder (Owen cruise, 2009) for search of active faults. Bathymetric data reveal a previously unrecognized submarine fault scarp system running for over 800 km between the Sheba Ridge in the Gulf of Aden and the Makran subduction zone. The primary plate boundary structure is not the bathymetrically high Owen Ridge, but is instead a series of clearly delineated strike-slip fault segments separated by several releasing and restraining bends. Despite an abundant sedimentary supply by the Indus River flowing from the Himalaya, fault scarps are not obscured by recent deposits and can be followed over hundreds of kilometres, pointing to very active tectonics. The total strike-slip displacement of the fault system is 10-12 km, indicating that it has been active for the past ~ 3 to 6 Ma if its current rate of motion of 3 ± 1 mm yr- 1 has remained stable. We describe the geometry of this recent fault system, including a major pull-apart basin at the latitude 20°N, and we show that it closely follows an arc of small circle centred on the Arabia-India pole of rotation, as expected for a transform plate boundary.

  13. Origin of the oceanic basalt basement of the Solomon Islands arc and its relationship to the Ontong Java Plateau-insights from Cenozoic plate motion models

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wells, R.E.

    1989-01-01

    Cenozoic global plate motion models based on a hotspot reference frame may provide a useful framework for analyzing the tectonic evolution of the Solomon Islands convergent margin. A postulated late Miocene collision of the Ontong Java Plateau (OJP) with a NE-facing arc is consistent with the predicted path of the OJP across the Pacific Basin and its Miocene arrival at the trench. Late-stage igneous activity (65-30 Ma) predicted for the OJP as it rode over the Samoan hotspot occurred in correlative stratigraphic sections on Malaita, the supposed accreted flake of OJP in the Solomon Islands arc. Convergence similar to the present velocities between Australia and the Pacific plates was characteristic of the last 43 million years. Prior to 43 Ma Pacific-Australia plate motions were divergent, seemingly at odds with geologic evidence for early Tertiary convergence, particularly in Papua New Guinea. A postulated South Pacific plate may have existed between Australia and the Pacific plate and would have allowed implied northward subduction along the northeastern Australia plate boundary that lasted into the early Eocene. Subsequent reorganization of plate motions in the middle Eocene correlates with middle Eocene marginal basin formation along ridges oblique to the main plate boundary. Cessation of spreading on the Pacific-South Pacific Ridge and its subsequent subduction beneath Asia followed the change in Pacific plate motion at 43 Ma. A trapped remnant of the extinct, NW-trending ridge may still lie beneath the western Philippine Sea. The terminal deformation, metamorphism and ophiolite obduction in the Eocene orogen of the southwest Pacific also correlates with the major change in Pacific plate motion at 43 Ma and the subsequent compression of the dying Eocene arc against outlying continental and oceanic crustal blocks of the Australian plate. The Solomon Islands oceanic basement may represent juxtaposition of oceanic plateaus of the Australian plate beneath

  14. Formation of plate boundaries: The role of mantle volatilization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seno, Tetsuzo; Kirby, Stephen H.

    2014-02-01

    In the early Earth, convection occurred with the accumulation of thick crust over a weak boundary layer downwelling into the mantle (Davies, G.F., 1992. On the emergence of plate tectonics. Geology 20, 963-966.). This would have transitioned to stagnant-lid convection as the mantle cooled (Solomatov, V.S., Moresi, L.-N., 1997. Three regimes of mantle convection with non-Newtonian viscosity and stagnant lid convection on the terrestrial planets. Geophys. Res. Lett. 24, 1907-1910.) or back to a magma ocean as the mantle heated (Sleep, N., 2000. Evolution of the mode of convection within terrestrial planets. J. Geophys. Res. 105(E7): 17563-17578). Because plate tectonics began operating on the Earth, subduction must have been initiated, thus avoiding these shifts. Based on an analogy with the continental crust subducted beneath Hindu Kush and Burma, we propose that the lithosphere was hydrated and/or carbonated by H2O-CO2 vapors released from magmas generated in upwelling plumes and subsequently volatilized during underthrusting, resulting in lubrication of the thrust above, and subduction of the lithosphere along with the overlying thick crust. Once subduction had been initiated, serpentinized forearc mantle may have formed in a wedge-shaped body above a dehydrating slab. In relict arcs, suture zones, or rifted margins, any agent that warms and dehydrates the wedge would weaken the region surrounding it, and form various types of plate boundaries depending on the operating tectonic stress. Thus, once subduction is initiated, formation of plate boundaries might be facilitated by a major fundamental process: weakening due to the release of pressurized water from the warming serpentinized forearc mantle.

  15. Propagation of the Hawaiian-Emperor volcano chain by Pacific plate cooling stress

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stuart, W.D.; Foulger, G.R.; Barall, M.

    2007-01-01

    The lithosphere crack model, the main alternative to the mantle plume model for age-progressive magma emplacement along the Hawaiian-Emperor volcano chain, requires the maximum horizontal tensile stress to be normal to the volcano chain. However, published stress fields calculated from Pacific lithosphere tractions and body forces (e.g., subduction pull, basal drag, lithosphere density) are not optimal for southeast propagation of a stress-free, vertical tensile crack coincident with the Hawaiian segment of the Hawaiian-Emperor chain. Here we calculate the thermoelastic stress rate for present-day cooling of the Pacific plate using a spherical shell finite element representation of the plate geometry. We use observed seafloor isochrons and a standard model for lithosphere cooling to specify the time dependence of vertical temperature profiles. The calculated stress rate multiplied by a time increment (e.g., 1 m.y.) then gives a thermoelastic stress increment for the evolving Pacific plate. Near the Hawaiian chain position, the calculated stress increment in the lower part of the shell is tensional, with maximum tension normal to the chain direction. Near the projection of the chain trend to the southeast beyond Hawaii, the stress increment is compressive. This incremental stress field has the form necessary to maintain and propagate a tensile crack or similar lithosphere flaw and is thus consistent with the crack model for the Hawaiian volcano chain.?? 2007 The Geological Society of America.

  16. Features on Venus generated by plate boundary processes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mckenzie, Dan; Ford, Peter G.; Johnson, Catherine; Parsons, Barry; Sandwell, David; Saunders, Stephen; Solomon, Sean C.

    1992-01-01

    Various observations suggest that there are processes on Venus that produce features similar to those associated with plate boundaries on earth. Synthetic aperture radar images of Venus, taken with a radar whose wavelength is 12.6 cm, are compared with GLORIA images of active plate boundaries, obtained with a sound source whose wavelength is 23 cm. Features similar to transform faults and to abyssal hills on slow and fast spreading ridges can be recognized within the Artemis region of Venus but are not clearly visible elsewhere. The composition of the basalts measured by the Venera 13 and 14 and the Vega 2 spacecraft corresponds to that expected from adiabatic decompression, like that which occurs beneath spreading ridges on earth. Structures that resemble trenches are widespread on Venus and show the same curvature and asymmetry as they do on earth. These observations suggest that the same simple geophysical models that have been so successfully used to understand the tectonics of earth can also be applied to Venus.

  17. Petrologic Aspects of Seamount and Guyot Volcanism on the Ancestral Mesozoic Pacific Plate: a Review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Natland, J. H.

    2007-12-01

    Hundreds of large seamounts and guyots are widely scattered almost in a "shotgun-blast" arrangement in an area about the size of the United States west of the Mississippi River on the Mesozoic Pacific plate between the Mariana Trench and the Gilbert Islands. Most of these formed between ~160-100 Ma while the Pacific plate was surrounded by spreading ridges and growing outward in all directions. There is little to no indication that the seamounts and guyots formed along linear seamount chains; existing radiometric-age data show no age progressions. The volcanoes appear to have formed in response to a uniform stress configuration across the plate, which was either not moving or moving very slowly at the time (1, 2), much like the modern Antarctic plate. When the growing plate started to encounter subduction systems in the western Pacific at ~90 Ma, consistent stress patterns began to develop, and the broad linear Gilbert and Line volcanic ridge systems began to form. Even then, however, considerable overlapping of volcanism occurred, and only the most general age progressions are evident in existing data. Petrologic data from samples obtained from dozens of volcanic summits by dredging and beneath several carbonate platforms by drilling reveal considerable diversity in development of differentiated alkalic magmatic lineages rooted in diverse parental basaltic rocks. These include transitional, alkalic and basanitic compositions, with differentiates of hawaiite, mugearite, trachyte and one phonolite. Many of the basaltic rocks are partly to significantly transformed by alteration under oxidative conditions (dredged rocks) and both oxidative and non-oxidative conditions (drilled rocks). This can make estimations of mantle geochemical provenance difficult. Nevertheless, the province has been linked by backtracking techniques to the modern SOPITA region of the South Pacific (3), and its rocks show enrichments in trace elements and isotopic characteristics similar to

  18. Seismotectonics and recent evolution of the Eurasia-North America Plate Boundary in Northeastern Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Imaev, V. S.; Imaeva, L. P.; Kozmin, B. M.; Fujita, K. T.; Mackey, K. G.

    2009-04-01

    In contrast to oceanic plate boundaries which are usually well defined by earthquake locations and magnetic anomalies, the present and past kinematics of plate boundaries in the continents remains problematic in many settings. One particularly vexing such boundary is the one that separates Eurasia from North America in Northeast Russia. In the earliest plate models it was evident that the mid-Atlantic spreading ridge continues in the Arctic as the Gakkel ridge which then runs almost perpendicularly into the continental shelf of Russia in the Laptev sea. On the shelf, and further south on land, the narrow belt of seismicity that is found along the Gakkel ridge broadens into a diffuse swath of earthquakes which is in places more than 800 km wide and extends along the Chersky Range towards the coast of the Okhotsk sea and northern Kamchatka The fact that the Okhotsk sea is aseismic but is surrounded by seismic belts has to lead the interpretation that it is an independent microplate that lies between the Eurasian, North American, Pacific and Amur plates (Cook et al., 1986).Unravelling the kinematics of the Eurasia-Okhotsk-North America Plate boundaries has proven difficult. This is in part due to the paucity of geological and geophysical data from this remote region, and to the fact that the Eurasia-North America pole of rotation lies in close vicinity to the plate boundary itself. Cook et al. (1986), using earthquake slip vectors, placed the current pole of rotation near the Lena river delta, that is, in the area where Eurasia-North America plate boundary comes on shore ). As a consequence, spreading along the Gakkel ridge north of the pole of rotation, should change into convergence or strike-slip to the south depending on the orientation of the boundary. Making specific predictions for fault kinematics in the area has been hampered by the fact that different geophysical and geodetic data-sets have yielded different locations for the Eurasia-North America pole of

  19. Actively dewatering fluid-rich zones along the Costa Rica plate boundary fault

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bangs, N. L.; McIntosh, K. D.; Silver, E. A.; Kluesner, J. W.; Ranero, C. R.; von Huene, R.

    2012-12-01

    New 3D seismic reflection data reveal distinct evidence for active dewatering above a 12 km wide segment of the plate boundary fault within the Costa Rica subduction zone NW of the Osa Peninsula. In the spring of 2011 we acquired a 11 x 55 km 3D seismic reflection data set on the R/V Langseth using four 6,000 m streamers and two 3,300 in3 airgun arrays to examine the structure of the Costa Rica margin from the trench into the seismogenic zone. We can trace the plate-boundary interface from the trench across our entire survey to where the plate-boundary thrust lies > 10 km beneath the margin shelf. Approximately 20 km landward of the trench beneath the mid slope and at the updip edge of the seismogenic zone, a 12 km wide zone of the plate-boundary interface has a distinctly higher-amplitude seismic reflection than deeper or shallower segments of the fault. Directly above and potentially directly connected with this zone are high-amplitude, reversed-polarity fault-plane reflections that extend through the margin wedge and into overlying slope sediment cover. Within the slope cover, high-amplitude reversed-polarity reflections are common within the network of closely-spaced nearly vertical normal faults and several broadly spaced, more gently dipping thrust faults. These faults appear to be directing fluids vertically toward the seafloor, where numerous seafloor fluid flow indicators, such as pockmarks, mounds and ridges, and slope failure features, are distinct in multibeam and backscatter images. There are distinctly fewer seafloor and subsurface fluid flow indicators both updip and downdip of this zone. We believe these fluids come from a 12 km wide fluid-rich segment of the plate-boundary interface that is likely overpressured and has relatively low shear stress.

  20. Earthquakes along the Azores-Iberia plate boundary revisited

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Batlló, Josep; Matos, Catarina; Torres, Ricardo; Cruz, Jorge; Custódio, Susana

    2017-04-01

    The plate boundary that separates the Eurasian and African plates between the Azores triple junction and Gibraltar has unleashed some of the highest magnitude earthquakes in Europe in the historical and instrumental periods, including the 1755 great Lisbon earthquake with an estimated magnitude of M8.5-8.7, a M8.3 earthquake in 1941 in a transform oceanic fault, a M8.1 fault in 1975 in an oceanic intraplate domain, and a M7.9 earthquake in 1969 offshore SW Portugal. The plate boundary evolves from a divergent boundary in the east - the Azores domain - through a strike-slip domain at the center - the Gloria fault domain - to an oblique convergence domain in the west - west Iberia and its oceanic margin. A proper mapping of the seismicity along this plate boundary is key to better understanding it. Prior to the early eighties, many earthquakes with epicentre in the Atlantic and even in mainland Portugal were undetected or not located instrumentally. However knowledge of the occurrence and location of earthquakes prior to this period is critical to understanding the seismicity of the region and for the assessment of seismic hazard and risk. The relocation of events recorded instrumentally until 1960 is particularly difficult due to the poor sensitivity of the seismographs, few available stations, incompleteness of the reports and lack of accuracy of station chronometers. Thus, different catalogues often provide different locations for the same event, with no information about how they were obtained. On the other hand, there are also conspicuous gaps in the instrumental records of some Portuguese stations. For many earthquakes of the studied period records rely solely on felt effects. In general, a good control on the accuracy or quality of epicenters lacks. Here we present a review of the locations of instrumental earthquakes of the Azores-west Iberia region in the period 1900-1960. In total, we reviewed around 350 earthquakes. More than 160 additional events have

  1. Tectonics of the Nazca-Antarctic plate boundary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anderson-Fontana, Sandra; Larson, Roger L.; Engeln, Joseph F.; Lundgren, Paul; Stein, Seth

    1987-01-01

    A new bathymetric chart of part of the Chile transform system is constructed, based mainly on an R/V Endeavor survey from 100 deg W to its intersection with the East Ridge of the Juan Fernandez microplate. A generally continuous lineated trend can be followed through the entire region, with the transform valley being relatively narrow and well-defined from 109 deg W to approximately 104 deg 30 min W. The fracture zone then widens to the east, with at least two probable en echelon offsets to the south at 104 deg and 102 deg W. Six new strike-slip mechanisms along the Chile Transform and one normal fault mechanism near the northern end of the Chile Rise, inverted together with other plate-motion data from the eastern portion of the boundary, produce a new best-fit Euler pole for the Nazca-Antarctic plate pair, providing tighter constraints on the relative plate motions.

  2. Tectonics of the Scotia-Antarctica plate boundary constrained from seismic and seismological data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Civile, D.; Lodolo, E.; Vuan, A.; Loreto, M. F.

    2012-07-01

    The plate boundary between the Scotia and Antarctic plates runs along the broadly E-W trending South Scotia Ridge. It is a mainly transcurrent margin that juxtaposes thinned continental and transitional crust elements with restricted oceanic basins and deep troughs. Seismic profiles and regional-scale seismological constraints are used to define the peculiarities of the crustal structures in and around the southern Scotia Sea, and focal solutions from recent earthquakes help to understand the present-day geodynamic setting. The northern edge of the western South Scotia Ridge is marked by a sub-vertical, left-lateral master fault. Locally, a narrow wedge of accreted sediments is present at the base of the slope. This segment represents the boundary between the Scotia plate and the independent South Shetland continental block. Along the northern margin of the South Orkney microcontinent, the largest fragment of the South Scotia Ridge, an accretionary prism is present at the base of the slope, which was possibly created by the eastward drift of the South Orkney microcontinent and the consequent subduction of the transitional crust present to the north. East of the South Orkney microcontinent, the physiography and structure of the plate boundary are less constrained. Here the tectonic regime exhibits mainly strike-slip behavior with some grade of extensional component, and the plate boundary is segmented by a series of NNW-SSE trending release zones which favored the fragmentation and dispersion of the crustal blocks. Seismic data have also identified, along the north-western edge of the South Scotia Ridge, an elevated region - the Ona Platform - which can be considered, along with the Terror Rise, as the conjugate margin of the Tierra del Fuego, before the Drake Passage opening. We propose here an evolutionary sketch for the plate boundary (from the Late Oligocene to the present) encompassing the segment from the Elephant Island platform to the Herdman Bank.

  3. Attractors for non-dissipative irrotational von Karman plates with boundary damping

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bociu, Lorena; Toundykov, Daniel

    Long-time behavior of solutions to a von Karman plate equation is considered. The system has an unrestricted first-order perturbation and a nonlinear damping acting through free boundary conditions only. This model differs from those previously considered (e.g. in the extensive treatise (Chueshov and Lasiecka, 2010 [11])) because the semi-flow may be of a non-gradient type: the unique continuation property is not known to hold, and there is no strict Lyapunov function on the natural finite-energy space. Consequently, global bounds on the energy, let alone the existence of an absorbing ball, cannot be a priori inferred. Moreover, the free boundary conditions are not recognized by weak solutions and some helpful estimates available for clamped, hinged or simply-supported plates cannot be invoked. It is shown that this non-monotone flow can converge to a global compact attractor with the help of viscous boundary damping and appropriately structured restoring forces acting only on the boundary or its collar.

  4. Transitional and turbulent flat-plate boundary layers with heat transfer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Xiaohua; Moin, Parviz

    2010-11-01

    We report on our direct numerical simulation of two incompressible, nominally zero-pressure-gradient flat-plate boundary layers from momentum thickness Reynolds number 80 to 1950. Heat transfer between the constant-temperature solid surface and the free-stream is also simulated with molecular Prandtl number=1. Throughout the entire flat-plate, the ratio of Stanton number and skin-friction St/Cfdeviates from the exact Reynolds analogy value of 0.5 by less than 1.5%. Turbulent Prandtl number t peaks at the wall. Preponderance of hairpin vortices is observed in both the transitional and turbulent regions of the boundary layers. In particular, the internal structure of merged turbulent spots is hairpin forest; the internal structure of infant turbulent spots is hairpin packet. Numerous hairpin vortices are readily detected in both the near-wall and outer regions of the boundary layers up to momentum thickness Reynolds number 1950. This suggests that the hairpin vortices in the turbulent region are not simply the aged hairpin forests convected from the upstream transitional region. Temperature iso-surfaces in the companion thermal boundary layers are found to be a useful tracer in identifying hairpin vortex structures.

  5. Seismic Velocity and Elastic Properties of Plate Boundary Faults

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jeppson, Tamara N.

    The elastic properties of fault zone rock at depth play a key role in rupture nucleation, propagation, and the magnitude of fault slip. Materials that lie within major plate boundary fault zones often have very different material properties than standard crustal rock values. In order to understand the mechanics of faulting at plate boundaries, we need to both measure these properties and understand how they govern the behavior of different types of faults. Mature fault zones tend to be identified in large-scale geophysical field studies as zones with low seismic velocity and/or electrical resistivity. These anomalous properties are related to two important mechanisms: (1) mechanical or diagenetic alteration of the rock materials and/or (2) pore fluid pressure and stress effects. However, in remotely-sensed and large-length-scale data it is difficult to determine which of these mechanisms are affecting the measured properties. The objective of this dissertation research is to characterize the seismic velocity and elastic properties of fault zone rocks at a range of scales, with a focus on understanding why the fault zone properties are different from those of the surrounding rock and the potential effects on earthquake rupture and fault slip. To do this I performed ultrasonic velocity experiments under elevated pressure conditions on drill core and outcrops samples from three plate boundary fault zones: the San Andreas Fault, California, USA; the Alpine Fault, South Island, New Zealand; and the Japan Trench megathrust, Japan. Additionally, I compared laboratory measurements to sonic log and large-scale seismic data to examine the scale-dependence of the measured properties. The results of this study provide the most comprehensive characterization of the seismic velocities and elastic properties of fault zone rocks currently available. My work shows that fault zone rocks at mature plate boundary faults tend to be significantly more compliant than surrounding crustal

  6. Ocean Basin Evolution and Global-Scale Plate Reorganization Events Since Pangea Breakup

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Müller, R. Dietmar; Seton, Maria; Zahirovic, Sabin; Williams, Simon E.; Matthews, Kara J.; Wright, Nicky M.; Shephard, Grace E.; Maloney, Kayla T.; Barnett-Moore, Nicholas; Hosseinpour, Maral; Bower, Dan J.; Cannon, John

    2016-06-01

    We present a revised global plate motion model with continuously closing plate boundaries ranging from the Triassic at 230 Ma to the present day, assess differences among alternative absolute plate motion models, and review global tectonic events. Relatively high mean absolute plate motion rates of approximately 9-10 cm yr-1 between 140 and 120 Ma may be related to transient plate motion accelerations driven by the successive emplacement of a sequence of large igneous provinces during that time. An event at ˜100 Ma is most clearly expressed in the Indian Ocean and may reflect the initiation of Andean-style subduction along southern continental Eurasia, whereas an acceleration at ˜80 Ma of mean rates from 6 to 8 cm yr-1 reflects the initial northward acceleration of India and simultaneous speedups of plates in the Pacific. An event at ˜50 Ma expressed in relative, and some absolute, plate motion changes around the globe and in a reduction of global mean plate speeds from about 6 to 4-5 cm yr-1 indicates that an increase in collisional forces (such as the India-Eurasia collision) and ridge subduction events in the Pacific (such as the Izanagi-Pacific Ridge) play a significant role in modulating plate velocities.

  7. Buckling transition and boundary layer in non-Euclidean plates.

    PubMed

    Efrati, Efi; Sharon, Eran; Kupferman, Raz

    2009-07-01

    Non-Euclidean plates are thin elastic bodies having no stress-free configuration, hence exhibiting residual stresses in the absence of external constraints. These bodies are endowed with a three-dimensional reference metric, which may not necessarily be immersible in physical space. Here, based on a recently developed theory for such bodies, we characterize the transition from flat to buckled equilibrium configurations at a critical value of the plate thickness. Depending on the reference metric, the buckling transition may be either continuous or discontinuous. In the infinitely thin plate limit, under the assumption that a limiting configuration exists, we show that the limit is a configuration that minimizes the bending content, among all configurations with zero stretching content (isometric immersions of the midsurface). For small but finite plate thickness, we show the formation of a boundary layer, whose size scales with the square root of the plate thickness and whose shape is determined by a balance between stretching and bending energies.

  8. Palaeotectonic implications of increased late Eocene-early Oligocene volcanism from South Pacific DSDP sites

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kennett, J.P.; Von Der Borch, C.; Baker, P.A.; Barton, C.E.; Boersma, A.; Cauler, J.P.; Dudley, W.C.; Gardner, J.V.; Jenkins, D.G.; Lohman, W.H.; Martini, E.; Merrill, R.B.; Morin, R.; Nelson, Campbell S.; Robert, C.; Srinivasan, M.S.; Stein, R.; Takeuchi, A.; Murphy, M.G.

    1985-01-01

    Late Eocene-early Oligocene (42-35 Myr) sediments cored at two DSDP sites in the south-west Pacific contain evidence of a pronounced increase in local volcanic activity, particularly in close association with the Eocene-Oligocene boundary. This pulse of volcanism is coeval with that in New Zealand and resulted from the development of an Indo- Australian / Pacific Plate boundary through the region during the late Eocene. The late Eocene / earliest Oligocene was marked by widespread volcanism and tectonism throughout the Pacific and elsewhere, and by one of the most important episodes of Cenozoic climatic cooling. ?? 1985 Nature Publishing Group.

  9. The Iceland Plate Boundary Zone: Propagating Rifts, Migrating Transforms, and Rift-Parallel Strike-Slip Faults

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karson, J. A.

    2017-11-01

    Unlike most of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, the North America/Eurasia plate boundary in Iceland lies above sea level where magmatic and tectonic processes can be directly investigated in subaerial exposures. Accordingly, geologic processes in Iceland have long been recognized as possible analogs for seafloor spreading in the submerged parts of the mid-ocean ridge system. Combining existing and new data from across Iceland provides an integrated view of this active, mostly subaerial plate boundary. The broad Iceland plate boundary zone includes segmented rift zones linked by transform fault zones. Rift propagation and transform fault migration away from the Iceland hotspot rearrange the plate boundary configuration resulting in widespread deformation of older crust and reactivation of spreading-related structures. Rift propagation results in block rotations that are accommodated by widespread, rift-parallel, strike-slip faulting. The geometry and kinematics of faulting in Iceland may have implications for spreading processes elsewhere on the mid-ocean ridge system where rift propagation and transform migration occur.

  10. Plate tectonics beyond plate boundaries: the role of ancient structures in intraplate orogenesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heron, Philip; Pysklywec, Russell; Stephenson, Randell

    2015-04-01

    The development of orogens that occur at a distance from plate boundaries (i.e., `intraplate' deformation) cannot be adequately explained through conventional plate tectonic theory. Intraplate deformation infers a more complex argument for lithospheric and mantle interaction than plate tectonic theory allows. As a result, the origins of intraplate orogenesis are enigmatic. One hypothesis is the amalgamation of continental material (i.e., micro-plates) leaves inherent scars on the crust and mantle lithosphere. Previous studies into continent-continent collisions identify a number of scenarios from accretionary tectonics that affect the crust and mantle (namely, the development of a Rayleigh-Taylor instability, lithospheric underplating, lithospheric delamination, and lithospheric subduction). Any of these processes may weaken the lithosphere allowing episodic reactivation of faults within continental interiors. Hence, continental convergence (i.e., shortening) at a time after continental collision may cause the already weakened crust and mantle lithosphere to produce intraplate deformation. In order to better understand the processes involved in deformation away from plate boundaries, we present suites of continental shortening models (using the high-resolution thermal-mechanical modelling code SOPALE) to identify the preferred style of deformation. We model ancient structures by applying weak subduction scarring, changing the rheological conditions, and modifying the thermal structure within the lithosphere. To highlight the role of surface processes on plate and lithosphere deformation, the effect of climate-driven erosion and deposition on the tectonic structure of intraplate deformation is also addressed. We explore the relevance of the models to previously studied regions of intraplate orogenesis, including the Pyrenees in Europe, the Laramide orogen in North America, Tien Shan orogen in Central Asia, and Central Australia. The findings of the simulations with

  11. Receptivity of Flat-Plate Boundary Layer in a Non-Uniform Free Stream (Vorticity Normal to the Plate)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kogan, M. N.; Ustinov, M. V.

    1997-01-01

    Work is devoted to study of free-stream vorticity normal to leading edge interaction with boundary layer over plate and resulting flow distortion influence on laminar-turbulent transition. In experiments made the wake behind the vertically stretched wire was used as a source of vortical disturbances and its effect on the boundary layer over the horizontally mounted plate with various leading edge shapes was investigated. The purpose of experiments was to check the predictions of theoretical works of M.E. Goldstein, et. al. This theory shows that small free-stream inhomogeneity interacting with leading edge produces considerable distortion of boundary layer flow. In general, results obtained confirms predictions of Goldstein's theory, i.e., the amplification of steady vortical disturbances in boundary layer caused by vortex lines stretching was observed. Experimental results fully coincide with predictions of theory for large Reynolds number, relatively sharp leading edge and small disturbances. For large enough disturbances the flow distortion caused by symmetric wake unexpectedly becomes antisymmetric in spanwise direction. If the leading edge is too blunt the maximal distortion takes place immediately at the nose and no further amplification was observed. All these conditions and results are beyond the scope of Goldstein's theory.

  12. Seismicity of the Earth 1900-2010 eastern margin of the Australia plate

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Benz, Harley M.; Herman, Matthew; Tarr, Arthur C.; Hayes, Gavin P.; Furlong, Kevin P.; Villaseñor, Antonio; Dart, Richard L.; Rhea, Susan

    2011-01-01

    The eastern margin of the Australia plate is one of the most seismically active areas of the world due to high rates of convergence between the Australia and Pacific plates. In the region of New Zealand, the 3,000 km long Australia-Pacific plate boundary extends from south of Macquarie Island to the southern Kermadec Island chain. It includes an oceanic transform (the Macquarie Ridge), two oppositely verging subduction zones (Puysegur and Hikurangi), and a transpressive continental transform, the Alpine Fault through South Island, New Zealand. Since 1900, there have been 15 M7.5+ earthquakes recorded near New Zealand. Nine of these, and the four largest, occurred along or near the Macquarie Ridge, including the 1989 M8.2 event on the ridge itself, and the 2004 M8.1 event 200 km to the west of the plate boundary, reflecting intraplate deformation. The largest recorded earthquake in New Zealand itself was the 1931 M7.8 Hawke's Bay earthquake, which killed 256 people. The last M7.5+ earthquake along the Alpine Fault was 170 years ago; studies of the faults' strain accumulation suggest that similar events are likely to occur again.

  13. Anomalous Late Jurassic motion of the Pacific Plate with implications for true polar wander

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fu, Roger R.; Kent, Dennis V.

    2018-05-01

    True polar wander, or TPW, is the rotation of the entire mantle-crust system about an equatorial axis that results in a coherent velocity contribution for all lithospheric plates. One of the most recent candidate TPW events consists of a ∼30° rotation during Late Jurassic time (160-145 Ma). However, existing paleomagnetic documentation of this event derives exclusively from continents, which compose less than 50% of the Earth's surface area and may not reflect motion of the entire mantle-crust system. Additional paleopositional information from the Pacific Basin would significantly enhance coverage of the Earth's surface and allow more rigorous testing for the occurrence of TPW. We perform paleomagnetic analyses on core samples from Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Site 801B, which were taken from the oldest available Pacific crust, to determine its paleolatitude during the Late Jurassic and Early Cretaceous (167-133 Ma). We find that the Pacific Plate underwent a steady southward drift of 0.49°-0.74° My-1 except for an interval between Kimmeridgian and Tithonian time (157-147 Ma), during which it underwent northward motion at 1.45° ± 0.76° My-1 (1σ). This trajectory indicates that the plates of the Pacific Basin participated in the same large-amplitude (∼30°) rotation as continental lithosphere in the 160-145 Ma interval. Such coherent motion of a large majority of the Earth's surface strongly supports the occurrence of TPW, suggesting that a combination of subducting slabs and rising mantle plumes was sufficient to significantly perturb the Earth's inertia tensor in the Late Jurassic.

  14. Localized double-array stacking analysis of PcP: D″ and ULVZ structure beneath the Cocos plate, Mexico, central Pacific, and north Pacific

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hutko, Alexander R.; Lay, Thorne; Revenaugh, Justin

    2009-01-01

    A large, high quality P-wave data set comprising short-period and broadband signals sampling four separate regions in the lowermost mantle beneath the Cocos plate, Mexico, the central Pacific, and the north Pacific is analyzed using regional one-dimensional double-array stacking and modelling with reflectivity synthetics. A data-screening criterion retains only events with stable PcP energy in the final data stacks used for modelling and interpretation. This significantly improves the signal stacks relative to including unscreened observations, allows confident alignment on the PcP arrival and allows tight bounds to be placed on P-wave velocity structure above the core–mantle boundary (CMB). The PcP reflections under the Cocos plate are well modelled without any ultra-low velocity zone from 5 to 20°N. At latitudes from 15 to 20°N, we find evidence for two P-wave velocity discontinuities in the D″ region. The first is ∼182 km above the CMB with a δln Vp of +1.5%, near the same depth as a weaker discontinuity (<+0.5%) observed from 5 to 15°N in prior work. The other reflector is ∼454 km above the CMB, with a δln Vp of +0.4%; this appears to be a shallower continuation of the joint P- and S-wave discontinuity previously detected south of 15° N, which is presumed to be the perovskite to post-perovskite phase transition. The data stacks for paths bottoming below Mexico have PcP images that are well matched with the simple IASP91 structure, contradicting previous inferences of ULVZ presence in this region. These particular data are not very sensitive to any D″ discontinuities, and simply bound them to be <∼2%, if present. Data sampling the lowermost mantle beneath the central Pacific confirm the presence of a ∼15-km thick ultra-low velocity zone (ULVZ) just above the CMB, with δln Vp and δln Vs of around −3 to −4% and −4 to −8%, respectively. The ULVZ models predict previous S-wave data stacks well. The data for this region

  15. Cenozoic forearc tectonics in northeastern Japan: Relationships between outer forearc subsidence and plate boundary kinematics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Regalla, Christine

    Here we investigate the relationships between outer forearc subsidence, the timing and kinematics of upper plate deformation and plate convergence rate in Northeast Japan to evaluate the role of plate boundary dynamics in driving forearc subsidence. The Northeastern Japan margin is one of the first non-accretionary subduction zones where regional forearc subsidence was argued to reflect tectonic erosion of large volumes of upper crustal rocks. However, we propose that a significant component of forearc subsidence could be the result of dynamic changes in plate boundary geometry. We provide new constraints on the timing and kinematics of deformation along inner forearc faults, new analyses of the evolution of outer forearc tectonic subsidence, and updated calculations of plate convergence rate. These data collectively reveal a temporal correlation between the onset of regional forearc subsidence, the initiation of upper plate extension, and an acceleration in local plate convergence rate. A similar analysis of the kinematic evolution of the Tonga, Izu-Bonin, and Mariana subduction zones indicates that the temporal correlations observed in Japan are also characteristic of these three non-accretionary margins. Comparison of these data with published geodynamic models suggests that forearc subsidence is the result of temporal variability in slab geometry due to changes in slab buoyancy and plate convergence rate. These observations suggest that a significant component of forearc subsidence at these four margins is not the product of tectonic erosion, but instead reflects changes in plate boundary dynamics driven by variable plate kinematics.

  16. Life and death of the resurrection plate: Evidence for its existence and subduction in the northeastern Pacific in Paleocene-Eocene time

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Haeussler, P.J.; Bradley, D.C.; Wells, R.E.; Miller, M.L.

    2003-01-01

    Onshore evidence suggests that a plate is missing from published reconstructions of the northeastern Pacific Ooean in Paleocene- Eocene time. The Resurrection plate, named for the Resurrection Peninsula ophiolite near Seward, Alaska, was located east of the Kula plate and north of the Farallon plate. We interpret coeval near-trench magmatism in southern Alaska and the Cascadia margin as evidence for two slab windows associated with trench-ridge-trench (TRT) triple junctions, which formed the western and southern boundaries of the Resurrection plate. In Alaska, the Sanak-Baranof belt of near-trench intrusions records a west-to-east migration, from 61 to 50 Ma, of the northern TRT triple junction along a 2100-km-long section of coastline. In Oregon, Washington, and southern Vancouver Island, voluminous basaltic volcanism of the Siletz River Volcanics, Crescent Formation, and Metchosin Volcanics occurred between ca. 66 and 48 Ma. Lack of a clear age progression of magmatism along the Cascadia margin suggests that this southern triple junction did not migrate significantly. Synchronous near-trench magmatism from southeastern Alaska to Puget Sound at ca. 50 Ma documents the middle Eocene subduction of a spreading center, the crest of which was subparallel to the margin. We interpret this ca. 50 Ma event as recording the subduction-zone consumption of the last of the Resurrection plate. The existence and subsequent subduction of the Resurrection plate explains (1) northward terrane transport along the southeastern Alaska-British Columbia margin between 70 and 50 Ma, synchronous with an eastward-migrating triple junction in southern Alaska; (2) rapid uplift and voluminous magmatism in the Coast Mountains of British Columbia prior to 50 Ma related to subduction of buoyant, young oceanic crust of the Resurrection plate; (3) cessation of Coast Mountains magmatism at ca. 50 Ma due to cessation of subduction, (4) primitive mafic magmatism in the Coast Mountains and Cascade

  17. Measurements of strain at plate boundaries using space based geodetic techniques

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Robaudo, Stefano; Harrison, Christopher G. A.

    1993-01-01

    We have used the space based geodetic techniques of Satellite Laser Ranging (SLR) and VLBI to study strain along subduction and transform plate boundaries and have interpreted the results using a simple elastic dislocation model. Six stations located behind island arcs were analyzed as representative of subduction zones while 13 sites located on either side of the San Andreas fault were used for the transcurrent zones. The length deformation scale was then calculated for both tectonic margins by fitting the relative strain to an exponentially decreasing function of distance from the plate boundary. Results show that space-based data for the transcurrent boundary along the San Andreas fault help to define better the deformation length scale in the area while fitting nicely the elastic half-space earth model. For subduction type bonndaries the analysis indicates that there is no single scale length which uniquely describes the deformation. This is mainly due to the difference in subduction characteristics for the different areas.

  18. Subduction of the Pacific Plate Beneath the Kamchatka: Volcanism and Tectonic Earthquakes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gordeev, E. I.

    2008-12-01

    The results of studying subduction process of the Pacific plate beneath the Kamchatka and related processes are described. The focal mechanism solutions estimated from Centroid Moment Tensor (CMT) catalog and sequence of the largest earthquakes occurred in Kamchatka were used to asses velocity of subducted slab. The boundary of contact for subducted slab is determined at a depth of 30-70 km, and is considered as a plane at azimuth 217° and with a dip angle of 25°. The rate of subduction estimated from CMT mechanisms yields V=0.9 cm/yr for southern zone (south of Shipunsky Cape), and V=1.4 cm/yr for central zone (from Shipunsky Cape to Kronotsky Cape). The largest coupled consistent earthquakes recorded from 1737 were used for analysis. The results show, that for the southern area V=6.6 - 7.1 cm yr (two couples), and for the central part V=6.6 cm yr. The estimated value of velocity for the creep part of subducted slab is about 5 to 15 per cent of the bulk velocity. The Pacific plate subducts at a rate of 8 cm yr. Series of GPS observations conducted from 1997 up to 2007 were used to estimate the rate at which Kamchatka is deformed under the effect of the subducted slab (along-slab direction). The average values of rate and velocity variations versus the average rate were estimated response to permanent GPS station PETR. It was shown that the motion at BKI (Bering) regardless KlU (Klyuchi) is uneven: variations of velocity reach up to 30 per cent (at average running window of 1 year). There are about 28 active volcanoes in Kamchatka that provide intensive volcanic activity in this region. The volcanoes produce about 16-17% of magmatic rocks erupted by all volcanoes in the Earth. Over the past 5 years, eruptions of Sheveluch, Klyuchevskoy, Bezymianny, Karymsky, and Mutnovsky volcanoes have occurred. Although many of these volcanoes are in sparsely populated areas, they lie adjacent to the heavily North Pacific air routes between North America, Europe and Asia. The

  19. Logistical Support for the Installation of the Plate Boundary Observatory GPS and Borehole Strainmeter Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kurnik, C.; Austin, K.; Coyle, B.; Dittmann, T.; Feaux, K.; Friesen, B.; Johnson, W.; Mencin, D.; Pauk, B.; Walls, C.

    2007-12-01

    The Plate Boundary Observatory (PBO), part of the NSF-funded EarthScope project, is designed to study the three- dimensional strain field resulting from deformation across the active boundary zone between the Pacific and North American plates in the western United States. To meet these goals, UNAVCO will install 880 continuous GPS stations, 103 borehole strainmeter stations, 28 tiltmeters, and five laser strainmeters by October 2008. Such a broad network presents significant logisitical challenges, including moving supplies, equipment, and personnel around 6 million square kilometers, and this requires accurate tracking and careful planning. The PBO logistics chain includes the PBO headquarters at UNAVCO in Boulder, Colorado and five regional offices in the continental United States and Alaska, served by dozens of suppliers spread across the globe. These offices are responsible for building and maintaining sites in their region. Most equipment and supplies first arrive in Boulder, where they are tagged and entered into a UNAVCO-wide equipment database, assembled and quality checked as necessary, and sent on to the appropriate regional office. Larger items which are costly to store and ship from Boulder, such as batteries or long sections of stainless steel pipe and bar required for monuments, are shipped directly from the supplier to each region as needed. These supplies and equipment are also tracked through the ordering, delivery, installation, and maintenance cycle via Earned Value Management techniques which allow us to meet NSF and other Federal procurement rules. Early prototypes and assembly configurations aid the development of material and supply budgets. A thorough understanding of Federal procurement rules at project start up is critical as the project moves forward.

  20. Balancing the plate motion budget in the South Island, New Zealand using GPS, geological and seismological data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wallace, Laura M.; Beavan, John; McCaffrey, Robert; Berryman, Kelvin; Denys, Paul

    2007-01-01

    The landmass of New Zealand exists as a consequence of transpressional collision between the Australian and Pacific plates, providing an excellent opportunity to quantify the kinematics of deformation at this type of tectonic boundary. We interpret GPS, geological and seismological data describing the active deformation in the South Island, New Zealand by using an elastic, rotating block approach that automatically balances the Pacific/Australia relative plate motion budget. The data in New Zealand are fit to within uncertainty when inverted simultaneously for angular velocities of rotating tectonic blocks and the degree of coupling on faults bounding the blocks. We find that most of the plate motion budget has been accounted for in previous geological studies, although we suggest that the Porter's Pass/Amberley fault zone in North Canterbury, and a zone of faults in the foothills of the Southern Alps may have slip rates about twice that of the geological estimates. Up to 5 mm yr-1 of active deformation on faults distributed within the Southern Alps <100 km to the east of the Alpine Fault is possible. The role of tectonic block rotations in partitioning plate boundary deformation is less pronounced in the South Island compared to the North Island. Vertical axis rotation rates of tectonic blocks in the South Island are similar to that of the Pacific Plate, suggesting that edge forces dominate the block kinematics there. The southward migrating Chatham Rise exerts a major influence on the evolution of the New Zealand plate boundary; we discuss a model for the development of the Marlborough fault system and Hikurangi subduction zone in the context of this migration.

  1. Relaxation of the accelerating-gas boundary layer to the test-gas boundary layer on a flat plate in an expansion tube

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gupta, R. N.; Trimpi, R. L.

    1973-01-01

    An analytic investigation of the relaxation of the accelerating-gas boundary layer to the test-gas boundary layer over a flat plate mounted in an expansion tube has been conducted. In this treatment, nitrogen has been considered as the test gas and helium as the accelerating gas. The problem is analyzed in two conically similar limits: (1) when the time lag between the arrival of the shock and the interface at the leading edge of the plate is very large, and (2) when this time lag is negligible. The transient laminar boundary-layer equations of a perfect binary-gas mixture are taken as the flow governing equations. These coupled equations have been solved numerically by Gauss-Seidel line-relaxation method. The results predict the transient behavior as well as the time required for an all-helium accelerating-gas boundary layer to relax to an all-nitrogen boundary layer.

  2. The roof plate boundary is a bi-directional organiser of dorsal neural tube and choroid plexus development.

    PubMed

    Broom, Emma R; Gilthorpe, Jonathan D; Butts, Thomas; Campo-Paysaa, Florent; Wingate, Richard J T

    2012-11-01

    The roof plate is a signalling centre positioned at the dorsal midline of the central nervous system and generates dorsalising morphogenic signals along the length of the neuraxis. Within cranial ventricles, the roof plate gives rise to choroid plexus, which regulates the internal environment of the developing and adult brain and spinal cord via the secretion of cerebrospinal fluid. Using the fourth ventricle as our model, we show that the organiser properties of the roof plate are determined by its boundaries with the adjacent neuroepithelium. Through a combination of in ovo transplantation, co-culture and electroporation techniques in chick embryos between embryonic days 3 and 6, we demonstrate that organiser properties are maintained by interactions between the non-neural roof plate and the neural rhombic lip. At the molecular level, this interaction is mediated by Delta-Notch signalling and upregulation of the chick homologue of Hes1: chairy2. Gain- and loss-of-function approaches reveal that cdelta1 is both necessary and sufficient for organiser function. Our results also demonstrate that while chairy2 is specifically required for the maintenance of the organiser, its ectopic expression is not sufficient to recapitulate organiser properties. Expression of atonal1 in the rhombic lip adjacent at the roof plate boundary is acutely dependent on both boundary cell interactions and Delta-Notch signalling. Correspondingly, the roof plate boundary organiser also signals to the roof plate itself to specify the expression of early choroid plexus markers. Thus, the roof plate boundary organiser signals bi-directionally to acutely coordinate the development of adjacent neural and non-neural tissues.

  3. Constraints on Pacific plate kinematics and dynamics with global positioning system measurements

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dixon, T. H.; Golombek, M. P.; Thornton, C. L.

    1985-01-01

    A measurement program designed to investigate kinematic and dynamic aspects of plate tectonics in the Pacific region by means of satellite observations is proposed. Accuracy studies are summarized showing that for short baselines (less than 100 km), the measuring accuracy of global positioning system (GPS) receivers can be in the centimeter range. For longer baselines, uncertainty in the orbital ephemerides of the GPS satellites could be a major source of error. Simultaneous observations at widely (about 300 km) separated fiducial stations over the Pacific region, should permit an accuracy in the centimeter range for baselines of up to several thousand kilometers. The optimum performance level is based on the assumption of that fiducial baselines are known a priori to the centimeter range. An example fiducial network for a GPS study of the South Pacific region is described.

  4. Dynamic behaviour of thin composite plates for different boundary conditions

    SciTech Connect

    Sprintu, Iuliana, E-mail: sprintui@yahoo.com, E-mail: rotaruconstantin@yahoo.com; Rotaru, Constantin, E-mail: sprintui@yahoo.com, E-mail: rotaruconstantin@yahoo.com

    2014-12-10

    In the context of composite materials technology, which is increasingly present in industry, this article covers a topic of great interest and theoretical and practical importance. Given the complex design of fiber-reinforced materials and their heterogeneous nature, mathematical modeling of the mechanical response under different external stresses is very difficult to address in the absence of simplifying assumptions. In most structural applications, composite structures can be idealized as beams, plates, or shells. The analysis is reduced from a three-dimensional elasticity problem to a oneor two-dimensional problem, based on certain simplifying assumptions that can be made because the structure is thin.more » This paper aims to validate a mathematical model illustrating how thin rectangular orthotropic plates respond to the actual load. Thus, from the theory of thin plates, new analytical solutions are proposed corresponding to orthotropic rectangular plates having different boundary conditions. The proposed analytical solutions are considered both for solving equation orthotropic rectangular plates and for modal analysis.« less

  5. Compilation of Surface Creep on California Faults and Comparison of WGCEP 2007 Deformation Model to Pacific-North American Plate Motion

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wisely, Beth A.; Schmidt, David A.; Weldon, Ray J.

    2008-01-01

    expressed as earthquakes large enough to model. Because the ratio of the rate of creep relative to the total slip rate is often used to infer the average depth of creep, the ?depth? of creep can be calculated and used to reduce the surface area of a fault that generates earthquakes in our model. This reduction of surface area of rupture is described by an ?aseismicity factor,? assigned to each creeping fault in Appendix A. An aseismicity factor of less than 1 is only assigned to faults that are inferred to creep during the entire interseismic period. A single aseismicity factor was chosen for each section of the fault that creeps by expert opinion from the observations documented here. Uncertainties were not determined for the aseismicity factor, and thus it represents an unmodeled (and difficult to model) source of error. This Appendix simply provides the documentation of known creep, the type and precision of its measurement, and attempts to characterize the creep as interseismic, afterslip, transient or triggered. Parts 2 and 3 of this Appendix compare the WG-07 deformation model and the seismic source model it generates to the strain generated by the Pacific - North American plate motion. The concept is that plate motion generates essentially all of the elastic strain in the vicinity of the plate boundary that can be released as earthquakes. Adding up the slip rates on faults and all others sources of deformation (such as C-zones and distributed ?background? seismicity) should approximately yield the plate motion. This addition is usually accomplished by one of four approaches: 1) line integrals that sum deformation along discrete paths through the deforming zone between the two plates, 2) seismic moment tensors that add up seismic moment of a representative set of earthquakes generated by a crustal volume spanning the plate boundary, 3) strain tensors generated by adding up the strain associated with all of the faults in a crustal volume spanning the plate

  6. NOAA Deepwater Exploration of the Marianas 2016: Pacific Plate, Mariana Trench, and Mariana Forearc

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fryer, P. B.; Glickson, D.; Kelley, C.; Drazen, J.; Stern, R. J.

    2016-12-01

    Legs 1 and 3 of NOAA Okeanos Explorer EX1605 made 18 (ROV) dives exploring the following: 7 Cretaceous-age, Pacific Plate guyots east of the Trench; 1 small volcano on a Pacific Plate fracture; 3 areas of the inner trench slope; 2 forearc serpentinite mud volcanoes; and 5 forearc fault blocks. The Pacific Plate guyots are heavily manganese encrusted. Part of the rationale for those dives was to make baseline characterization of biota and habitats before potential mining. These guyots had striking diversity and abundance of fauna. Dives on 2 guyots examined high-relief scarps, formed when both down-going plate and edifices fractured outboard of the trench. The scarp on one had Cretaceous reef sequences, whereas the other exposed layers of volcanics. The dive on a small (1 km diameter, 141 m high) volcano on a plate fracture near the trench affirmed that it was relatively young, maybe like Petit-Spot volcanoes east of the Japan Trench. A dive in a canyon west of Guam transitioned from a steep slope of volcanic talus to a gentle sediment-covered slope. The inner trench slope opposite the subducting guyot that exposes reef deposits, revealed similar sequences, suggesting that the guyot is being incorporated into the Mariana forearc. The other inner slope dive traversed talus with fragments of serpentinized peridotite and lies near a chain of forearc serpentinite mud volcanoes. The 2 serpentinite mud volcanoes explored have sedimented, apparently inactive, surfaces, though we recovered a serpentinized peridotite sample from one of them. Dives on the forearc fault blocks attest to dynamic vertical tectonism. Three in the northern forearc show sediment sequences of varying types and textures, all dipping trenchward. Spectacular mid-forearc fault scarps strike east-west, stair-stepping down southward and were traversed on 2 dives. We saw many sequences of indurated sediments. Mapping on Legs 2 and 3 of the expedition showed that these fault scarps are mirrored to the south

  7. Global isostatic geoid anomalies for plate and boundary layer models of the lithosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hager, B. H.

    1981-01-01

    Commonly used one dimensional geoid models predict that the isostatic geoid anomaly over old ocean basins for the boundary layer thermal model of the lithosphere is a factor of two greater than that for the plate model. Calculations presented, using the spherical analogues of the plate and boundary layer thermal models, show that for the actual global distribution of plate ages, one dimensional models are not accurate and a spherical, fully three dimensional treatment is necessary. The maximum difference in geoid heights predicted for the two models is only about two meters. The thermal structure of old lithosphere is unlikely to be resolvable using global geoid anomalies. Stripping the effects of plate aging and a hypothetical uniform, 35 km, isostatically-compensated continental crust from the observed geoid emphasizes that the largest-amplitude geoid anomaly is the geoid low of almost 120 m over West Antarctica, a factor of two greater than the low of 60 m over Ceylon.

  8. In-Flight Boundary-Layer Transition of a Large Flat Plate at Supersonic Speeds

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Banks, D. W.; Frederick, M. A.; Tracy, R. R.; Matisheck, J. R.; Vanecek, N. D.

    2012-01-01

    A flight experiment was conducted to investigate the pressure distribution, local-flow conditions, and boundary-layer transition characteristics on a large flat plate in flight at supersonic speeds up to Mach 2.00. The tests used a NASA testbed aircraft with a bottom centerline mounted test fixture. The primary objective of the test was to characterize the local flow field in preparation for future tests of a high Reynolds number natural laminar flow test article. A second objective was to determine the boundary-layer transition characteristics on the flat plate and the effectiveness of using a simplified surface coating. Boundary-layer transition was captured in both analog and digital formats using an onboard infrared imaging system. Surface pressures were measured on the surface of the flat plate. Flow field measurements near the leading edge of the test fixture revealed the local flow characteristics including downwash, sidewash, and local Mach number. Results also indicated that the simplified surface coating did not provide sufficient insulation from the metallic structure, which likely had a substantial effect on boundary-layer transition compared with that of an adiabatic surface. Cold wall conditions were predominant during the acceleration to maximum Mach number, and warm wall conditions were evident during the subsequent deceleration.

  9. The roof plate boundary is a bi-directional organiser of dorsal neural tube and choroid plexus development

    PubMed Central

    Broom, Emma R.; Gilthorpe, Jonathan D.; Butts, Thomas; Campo-Paysaa, Florent; Wingate, Richard J. T.

    2012-01-01

    The roof plate is a signalling centre positioned at the dorsal midline of the central nervous system and generates dorsalising morphogenic signals along the length of the neuraxis. Within cranial ventricles, the roof plate gives rise to choroid plexus, which regulates the internal environment of the developing and adult brain and spinal cord via the secretion of cerebrospinal fluid. Using the fourth ventricle as our model, we show that the organiser properties of the roof plate are determined by its boundaries with the adjacent neuroepithelium. Through a combination of in ovo transplantation, co-culture and electroporation techniques in chick embryos between embryonic days 3 and 6, we demonstrate that organiser properties are maintained by interactions between the non-neural roof plate and the neural rhombic lip. At the molecular level, this interaction is mediated by Delta-Notch signalling and upregulation of the chick homologue of Hes1: chairy2. Gain- and loss-of-function approaches reveal that cdelta1 is both necessary and sufficient for organiser function. Our results also demonstrate that while chairy2 is specifically required for the maintenance of the organiser, its ectopic expression is not sufficient to recapitulate organiser properties. Expression of atonal1 in the rhombic lip adjacent at the roof plate boundary is acutely dependent on both boundary cell interactions and Delta-Notch signalling. Correspondingly, the roof plate boundary organiser also signals to the roof plate itself to specify the expression of early choroid plexus markers. Thus, the roof plate boundary organiser signals bi-directionally to acutely coordinate the development of adjacent neural and non-neural tissues. PMID:23052907

  10. Global plate boundary evolution and kinematics since the late Paleozoic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matthews, Kara J.; Maloney, Kayla T.; Zahirovic, Sabin; Williams, Simon E.; Seton, Maria; Müller, R. Dietmar

    2016-11-01

    Many aspects of deep-time Earth System models, including mantle convection, paleoclimatology, paleobiogeography and the deep Earth carbon cycle, require high-resolution plate motion models that include the evolution of the mosaic of plate boundaries through time. We present the first continuous late Paleozoic to present-day global plate model with evolving plate boundaries, building on and extending two previously published models for the late Paleozoic (410-250 Ma) and Mesozoic-Cenozoic (230-0 Ma). We ensure continuity during the 250-230 Ma transition period between the two models, update the absolute reference frame of the Mesozoic-Cenozoic model and add a new Paleozoic reconstruction for the Baltica-derived Alexander Terrane, now accreted to western North America. This 410-0 Ma open access model provides a framework for deep-time whole Earth modelling and acts as a base for future extensions and refinement. We analyse the model in terms of the number of plates, predicted plate size distribution, plate and continental root mean square (RMS) speeds, plate velocities and trench migration through time. Overall model trends share many similarities to those for recent times, which we use as a first order benchmark against which to compare the model and identify targets for future model refinement. Except for during the period 260-160 Ma, the number of plates (16-46) and ratio of "large" plates (≥ 107.5 km2) to smaller plates ( 2.7-6.6) are fairly similar to present-day values (46 and 6.6, respectively), with lower values occurring during late Paleozoic assembly and growth of Pangea. This temporal pattern may also reflect difficulties in reconstructing small, now subducted oceanic plates further back in time, as well as whether a supercontinent is assembling or breaking up. During the 260-160 Ma timeframe the model reaches a minima in the number of plates, in contrast to what we would expect during initial Pangea breakup and thus highlighting the need for refinement

  11. Repeating Deep Very Low Frequency Earthquakes: An Evidence of Transition Zone between Brittle and Ductile Zone along Plate Boundary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ishihara, Y.; Yamamoto, Y.; Arai, R.

    2017-12-01

    Recently slow or low frequency seismic and geodetic events are focused under recognition of important role in tectonic process. The most western region of Ryukyu trench, Yaeyama Islands, is very active area of these type events. It has semiannual-like slow slip (Heki et.al., 2008; Nishimura et.al.,2014) and very frequent shallow very low frequency earthquakes near trench zone (Ando et.al.,2012; Nakamura et.al.,2014). Arai et.al.(2016) identified clear reverse phase discontinuity along plate boundary by air-gun survey, suggesting existence of low velocity layer including fluid. The subducting fluid layer is considered to control slip characteristics. On the other hand, deep low frequency earthquake and tremor observed at south-western Honshu and Shikoku of Japan are not identified well due to lack of high-quality seismic network. A broadband seismic station(ISG/PS) of Pacific21 network is operating in last 20 years that locates on occurrence potential area of low frequency earthquake. We tried to review continuous broadband record, searching low frequency earthquakes. In pilot survey, we found three very low frequency seismic events which are dominant in less than 0.1Hz component and are not listed in earthquake catalogue. Source locates about 50km depth and at transition area between slow slip event and active area of general earthquake along plate boundary. To detect small and/or hidden very low frequency earthquake, we applied matched filter analysis to continuous three components waveform data using pre-reviewed seismogram as template signal. 12 events with high correlation are picked up in last 10 years. Most events have very similar waveform, which means characteristics of repeating deep very low frequency earthquake. The event history of very low frequency earthquake is not related with one of slow slip event in this region. In Yaeyama region, low frequency earthquake, general earthquake and slow slip event occur dividing in space and have apparent

  12. Gradual unlocking of plate boundary controlled initiation of the 2014 Iquique earthquake.

    PubMed

    Schurr, Bernd; Asch, Günter; Hainzl, Sebastian; Bedford, Jonathan; Hoechner, Andreas; Palo, Mauro; Wang, Rongjiang; Moreno, Marcos; Bartsch, Mitja; Zhang, Yong; Oncken, Onno; Tilmann, Frederik; Dahm, Torsten; Victor, Pia; Barrientos, Sergio; Vilotte, Jean-Pierre

    2014-08-21

    On 1 April 2014, Northern Chile was struck by a magnitude 8.1 earthquake following a protracted series of foreshocks. The Integrated Plate Boundary Observatory Chile monitored the entire sequence of events, providing unprecedented resolution of the build-up to the main event and its rupture evolution. Here we show that the Iquique earthquake broke a central fraction of the so-called northern Chile seismic gap, the last major segment of the South American plate boundary that had not ruptured in the past century. Since July 2013 three seismic clusters, each lasting a few weeks, hit this part of the plate boundary with earthquakes of increasing peak magnitudes. Starting with the second cluster, geodetic observations show surface displacements that can be associated with slip on the plate interface. These seismic clusters and their slip transients occupied a part of the plate interface that was transitional between a fully locked and a creeping portion. Leading up to this earthquake, the b value of the foreshocks gradually decreased during the years before the earthquake, reversing its trend a few days before the Iquique earthquake. The mainshock finally nucleated at the northern end of the foreshock area, which skirted a locked patch, and ruptured mainly downdip towards higher locking. Peak slip was attained immediately downdip of the foreshock region and at the margin of the locked patch. We conclude that gradual weakening of the central part of the seismic gap accentuated by the foreshock activity in a zone of intermediate seismic coupling was instrumental in causing final failure, distinguishing the Iquique earthquake from most great earthquakes. Finally, only one-third of the gap was broken and the remaining locked segments now pose a significant, increased seismic hazard with the potential to host an earthquake with a magnitude of >8.5.

  13. Playing jigsaw with Large Igneous Provinces—A plate tectonic reconstruction of Ontong Java Nui, West Pacific

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hochmuth, Katharina; Gohl, Karsten; Uenzelmann-Neben, Gabriele

    2015-11-01

    The three largest Large Igneous Provinces (LIP) of the western Pacific—Ontong Java, Manihiki, and Hikurangi Plateaus—were emplaced during the Cretaceous Normal Superchron and show strong similarities in their geochemistry and petrology. The plate tectonic relationship between those LIPs, herein referred to as Ontong Java Nui, is uncertain, but a joined emplacement was proposed by Taylor (2006). Since this hypothesis is still highly debated and struggles to explain features such as the strong differences in crustal thickness between the different plateaus, we revisited the joined emplacement of Ontong Java Nui in light of new data from the Manihiki Plateau. By evaluating seismic refraction/wide-angle reflection data along with seismic reflection records of the margins of the proposed "Super"-LIP, a detailed scenario for the emplacement and the initial phase of breakup has been developed. The LIP is a result of an interaction of the arriving plume head with the Phoenix-Pacific spreading ridge in the Early Cretaceous. The breakup of the LIP shows a complicated interplay between multiple microplates and tectonic forces such as rifting, shearing, and rotation. Our plate kinematic model of the western Pacific incorporates new evidence from the breakup margins of the LIPs, the tectonic fabric of the seafloor, as well as previously published tectonic concepts such as the rotation of the LIPs. The updated rotation poles of the western Pacific allow a detailed plate tectonic reconstruction of the region during the Cretaceous Normal Superchron and highlight the important role of LIPs in the plate tectonic framework.

  14. The Lithosphere-asthenosphere Boundary beneath the South Island of New Zealand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hua, J.; Fischer, K. M.; Savage, M. K.

    2017-12-01

    Lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB) properties beneath the South Island of New Zealand have been imaged by Sp receiver function common-conversion point stacking. In this transpressional boundary between the Australian and Pacific plates, dextral offset on the Alpine fault and convergence have occurred for the past 20 My, with the Alpine fault now bounded by Australian plate subduction to the south and Pacific plate subduction to the north. This study takes advantage of the long-duration and high-density seismometer networks deployed on or near the South Island, especially 29 broadband stations of the New Zealand permanent seismic network (GeoNet). We obtained 24,980 individual receiver functions by extended-time multi-taper deconvolution, mapping to three-dimensional space using a Fresnel zone approximation. Pervasive strong positive Sp phases are observed in the LAB depth range indicated by surface wave tomography (Ball et al., 2015) and geochemical studies. These phases are interpreted as conversions from a velocity decrease across the LAB. In the central South Island, the LAB is observed to be deeper and broader to the west of the Alpine fault. The deeper LAB to the west of the Alpine fault is consistent with oceanic lithosphere attached to the Australian plate that was partially subducted while also translating parallel to the Alpine fault (e.g. Sutherland, 2000). However, models in which the Pacific lithosphere has been underthrust to the west past the Alpine fault cannot be ruled out. Further north, a zone of thin lithosphere with a strong and vertically localized LAB velocity gradient occurs to the west of the fault, juxtaposed against a region of anomalously weak LAB conversions to the east of the fault. This structure, similar to results of Sp imaging beneath the central segment of the San Andreas fault (Ford et al., 2014), also suggests that lithospheric blocks with contrasting LAB properties meet beneath the Alpine fault. The observed variations in

  15. An Integrated View of Tectonics in the North Pacific Derived from GPS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elliott, J.; Freymueller, J.; Marechal, A.; Larsen, C.; Perea Barreto, M. A.

    2015-12-01

    Textbooks show a simple picture of the tectonics of the North Pacific, with discrete deformation along the boundary between the Pacific and North American plates along the Aleutian megathrust and Fairweather/Queen Charlotte fault system. Reality is much more complex, with a pattern of broadly distributed deformation. This is in part due to a number of studies and initiatives (such as PBO) in recent years that have greatly expanded the density of GPS data throughout the region. We present an overview of the GPS data acquired and various tectonic interpretations developed over the past decade and discuss a current effort to integrate the available data into a regional tectonic model for Alaska and northwestern Canada. Rather than discrete plate boundaries, we observe zones of concentrated deformation where the majority of the relative plate motion is accommodated. Within these zones, there are major fault systems, such as the Fairweather-Queen Charlotte transform and the Aleutian megathrust, where most of the deformation occurs along a main structure, but often motion is instead partitioned across multiple faults, such as the fold-and-thrust belt of the eastern St. Elias orogen. In zones of particular complexity, such as the eastern syntaxis of the St. Elias orogen, the deformation is better described by continuum deformation than localized strain along crustal structures. Strain is transferred far inboard, either by diffuse deformation or along fault system such as the Denali fault, and outboard of the main zones of deformation. The upper plate, if it can be called such, consists of a number of blocks and deforming zones while the lower plate is segmented between the Yakutat block and Pacific plate and is also likely undergoing internal deformation.

  16. Using Remote Sensing Data to Constrain Models of Fault Interactions and Plate Boundary Deformation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Glasscoe, M. T.; Donnellan, A.; Lyzenga, G. A.; Parker, J. W.; Milliner, C. W. D.

    2016-12-01

    Determining the distribution of slip and behavior of fault interactions at plate boundaries is a complex problem. Field and remotely sensed data often lack the necessary coverage to fully resolve fault behavior. However, realistic physical models may be used to more accurately characterize the complex behavior of faults constrained with observed data, such as GPS, InSAR, and SfM. These results will improve the utility of using combined models and data to estimate earthquake potential and characterize plate boundary behavior. Plate boundary faults exhibit complex behavior, with partitioned slip and distributed deformation. To investigate what fraction of slip becomes distributed deformation off major faults, we examine a model fault embedded within a damage zone of reduced elastic rigidity that narrows with depth and forward model the slip and resulting surface deformation. The fault segments and slip distributions are modeled using the JPL GeoFEST software. GeoFEST (Geophysical Finite Element Simulation Tool) is a two- and three-dimensional finite element software package for modeling solid stress and strain in geophysical and other continuum domain applications [Lyzenga, et al., 2000; Glasscoe, et al., 2004; Parker, et al., 2008, 2010]. New methods to advance geohazards research using computer simulations and remotely sensed observations for model validation are required to understand fault slip, the complex nature of fault interaction and plate boundary deformation. These models help enhance our understanding of the underlying processes, such as transient deformation and fault creep, and can aid in developing observation strategies for sUAV, airborne, and upcoming satellite missions seeking to determine how faults behave and interact and assess their associated hazard. Models will also help to characterize this behavior, which will enable improvements in hazard estimation. Validating the model results against remotely sensed observations will allow us to better

  17. Structural patterns and tectonic history of the Bauer microplate, Eastern Tropical Pacific

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Eakins, B.W.; Lonsdale, P.F.

    2003-01-01

    The Bauer microplate was an independent slab of oceanic lithosphere that from 17 Ma to 6 Ma grew from 1.4 ?? 105 km2 to 1.2 ?? 106 km2 between the rapidly diverging Pacific and Nazca plates. Growth was by accretion at the lengthening and overlapping axes of the (Bauer-Nazca) Galapagos Rise (GR) and the (Pacific-Bauer) East Pacific Rise (EPR). EPR and GR axial propagation to create and rapidly grow the counter-clockwise spinning microplate occurred in two phases: (1) 17-15Ma, when the EPR axis propagated north and the GR axis propagated south around a narrow (100- to 200-km-wide) core of older lithosphere; and (2) 8-6 Ma, when rapid northward propagation of the EPR axis resumed, overlapping ???400 km of the fast-spreading Pacific-Nazca rise-crest and appending a large (200- to 400-km-wide) area of the west flank of that rise as a 'northern annex' to the microplate. Between 15 and 8 Ma the microplate grew principally by crustal accretion at the crest of its rises. The microplate was captured by the Nazca plate and the Galapagos Rise axis became extinct soon after 6 Ma, when the south end of the Pacific-Bauer EPR axis became aligned with the southern Pacific-Nazca EPR axis and its north end was linked by the Quebrada Transform to the northern Pacific-Nazca EPR axis. Incomplete multibeam bathymetry of the microplate margins, and of both flanks of the Pacific-Bauer and Bauer-Nazca Rises, together with archival magnetic and satellite altimetry data, clarifies the growth and (counter-clockwise) rotation of the microplate, and tests tectonic models derived from studies of the still active, much smaller, Easter and Juan Fernandez microplates. Our interpretations differ from model predictions in that Euler poles were not located on the microplate boundary, propagation in the 15-8 Ma phase of growth was not toward these poles, and microplate rotation rates were small (5??/m.y.) for much of its history, when long, bounding transform faults reduced coupling to Nazca plate

  18. a Lattice Boltzmann Study of the 2d Boundary Layer Created by AN Oscillating Plate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cappietti, L.; Chopard, B.

    We study the applicability of the Lattice Boltzmann Method (LBM) to simulate the 2D laminar boundary layer induced by an oscillating flat plate. We also investigate the transition to the disturbed laminar regime that occurs with a rough oscillating plate. The simulations were performed in two cases: first with a fluid otherwise at rest and second in presence of superimposed current. The generation of coherent vortex structures and their evolution are commented. The accuracy of the method was checked by comparisons with the exact analytical solution of the Navier-Stokes equations for the so-called Stokes' Second Problem. The comparisons show that LBM reproduces this time varying flow with first order accuracy. In the case of the wavy-plate, the results show that a mechanism of vortex-jet formations, low speed-streak and shear instability sustain a systems of stationary vortices outside the boundary layer. The vortex-jet takes place at the end of the decelerating phase whereas the boundary layer turns out to be laminar when the plate accelerates. In the presence of the superimposed current, the vortex-jet mechanism is still effective but the vortices outside the boundary layer are only present during part of the oscillating period. During the remaining part, the flow turns out to be laminar although a wave perturbation in the velocity field is present.

  19. An EarthScope Plate Boundary Observatory Progress Report

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jackson, M.; Anderson, G.; Blume, F.; Walls, C.; Coyle, B.; Feaux, K.; Friesen, B.; Phillips, D.; Hafner, K.; Johnson, W.; Mencin, D.; Pauk, B.; Dittmann, T.

    2007-12-01

    UNAVCO is building and operating the Plate Boundary Observatory (PBO), part of the NSF-funded EarthScope project to understand the structure, dynamics, and evolution of the North American continent. When complete in October 2008, the 875 GPS, 103 strain and seismic, and 28 tiltmeters stations will comprise the largest integrated geodetic and seismic network in United States and the second largest in the world. Data from the PBO network will facilitate research into plate boundary deformation with unprecedented scope and detail. As of 1 September 2007, UNAVCO had completed 680 PBO GPS stations and had upgraded 89% of the planned PBO Nucleus stations. Highlights of the past year's work include the expansion of the Alaska subnetwork to 95 continuously-operating stations, including coverage of Akutan and Augustine volcanoes and reconnaissance for future installations on Unimak Island; the installation of nine new stations on Mt. St. Helens; and the arrival of 33 permits for station installations on BLM land in Nevada. The Augustine network provided critical data on magmatic and volcanic processes associated with the 2005-2006 volcanic crisis, and has expanded to a total of 11 stations. Please visit http://pboweb.unavco.org/?pageid=3 for further information on PBO GPS network construction activities. As of September 2007, 41 PBO borehole stations had been installed and three laser strainmeter stations were operating, with a total of 60 borehole stations and 4 laser strainmeters expected by October 2007. In response to direction from the EarthScope community, UNAVCO installed a dense network of six stations along the San Jacinto Fault near Anza, California; installed three of four planned borehole strainmeter stations on Mt. St. Helens; and has densified coverage of the Parkfield area. Please visit http://pboweb.unavco.org/?pageid=8 for more information on PBO strainmeter network construction progress. The combined PBO/Nucleus GPS network provides 350 GB of raw standard

  20. Slip Behavior of the Queen Charlotte Plate Boundary Before and After the 2012, MW 7.8 Haida Gwaii Earthquake: Evidence From Repeating Earthquakes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hayward, Tim W.; Bostock, Michael G.

    2017-11-01

    The Queen Charlotte plate boundary, near Haida Gwaii, B.C., includes the dextral, strike-slip, Queen Charlotte Fault (QCF) and the subduction interface between the downgoing Pacific and overriding North American plates. In this study, we present a comprehensive repeating earthquake catalog that represents an effective slip meter for both structures. The catalog comprises 712 individual earthquakes (0.3≤MW≤3.5) arranged into 224 repeating earthquake families on the basis of waveform similarity and source separation estimates from coda wave interferometry. We employ and extend existing relationships for repeating earthquake magnitudes and slips to provide cumulative slip histories for the QCF and subduction interface in six adjacent zones within the study area between 52.3°N and 53.8°N. We find evidence for creep on both faults; however, creep rates are significantly less than plate motion rates, which suggests partial locking of both faults. The QCF exhibits the highest degrees of locking south of 52.8°N, which indicates that the seismic hazard for a major strike-slip earthquake is highest in the southern part of the study area. The 28 October 2012, MW 7.8 Haida Gwaii thrust earthquake occurred in our study area and altered the slip dynamics of the plate boundary. The QCF is observed to undergo accelerated, right-lateral slip for 1-2 months following the earthquake. The subduction interface exhibits afterslip thrust motion that persists for the duration of the study period (i.e., 3 years and 2 months after the Haida Gwaii earthquake). Afterslip is greatest (5.7-8.4 cm/yr) on the periphery of the main rupture zone of the Haida Gwaii event.

  1. Initiation of the Pyrenean plate boundary fault and its effect on the near- and far-field deformation of the European plate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dielforder, Armin; Frasca, Gianluca; Ford, Mary

    2017-04-01

    The European plate was affected by contractional deformation events in Late Cretaceous time. This is recorded by inception of thrusting and foreland basin subsidence in the Pyrenean realm, and inversion of Mesozoic rift systems in the interior of the European plate. It is widely accepted that the plate-wide deformation resulted from the onset of NE-directed convergence of Africa-Iberia relative to Europe, and a strong mechanical coupling of the plates, which allowed the transfer of stresses far into Europe. Geological data from both the Pyrenean orogen and the interior of the European plate indicate, however, that these conditions persisted only for 15-20 Myr and that Europe experienced a plate-wide stress relaxation during Paleocene time. Although a slow down in plate convergence between Africa and Europe and North Atlantic continental rifting were proposed as potential causes for the stress relaxation, the subject has remained controversial. In particular, none of the mechanisms seem to be suitable to explain the required changes in the mechanical coupling of Iberian and European plates and the associated stress transfer. Here we propose a new model for the Upper Cretaceous to Paleocene tectonic evolution of the European plate, which takes the temporal evolution of the Pyrenean plate boundary fault into account. Based on plate reconstructions, geological field-data, and restored cross-sections we argue that the plate boundary fault initiated during the Upper Cretaceous within the exhumed mantle domain situated between the rifted margins of the Iberian and European plates. At the transition from the Late Cretaceous to Paleocene, the mantle domain was closed and the rifted margins collided. This evolution was associated with a substantial change in the fault rheology leading to an overall decrease in the plate coupling force. During Paleocene time, the plate coupling force was efficiently balanced by the gravitational push of the European plate, leading to a near

  2. Fundamental structure model of island arcs and subducted plates in and around Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iwasaki, T.; Sato, H.; Ishiyama, T.; Shinohara, M.; Hashima, A.

    2015-12-01

    The eastern margin of the Asian continent is a well-known subduction zone, where the Pacific (PAC) and Philippine Sea (PHS) plates are being subducted. In this region, several island arcs (Kuril, Northeast Japan, Southwest Japan, Izu-Bonin and Ryukyu arcs) meet one another to form a very complicated tectonic environment. At 2014, we started to construct fundamental structure models for island arcs and subducted plates in and around Japan. Our research is composed of 6 items of (1) topography, (2) plate geometry, (3) fault models, (4) the Moho and brittle-ductile transition zone, (5) the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary, and (6) petrological/rheological models. Such information is basic but inevitably important in qualitative understanding not only for short-term crustal activities in the subduction zone (particularly caused by megathrust earthquakes) but also for long-term cumulative deformation of the arcs as a result of strong plate-arc/arc-arc interactions. This paper is the first presentation of our research, mainly presenting the results of items (1) and (2). The area of our modelling is 12o-54o N and 118o-164o E to cover almost the entire part of Japanese Islands together with Kuril, Ryukyu and Izu-Bonin trenches. The topography model was constructed from the 500-m mesh data provided from GSJ, JODC, GINA and Alaska University. Plate geometry models are being constructed through the two steps. In the first step, we modelled very smooth plate boundaries of the Pacific and Philippine Sea plates in our whole model area using 42,000 earthquake data from JMA, USGS and ISC. For 7,800 cross sections taken with several directions to the trench axes, 2D plate boundaries were defined by fitting to the earthquake distribution (the Wadati-Benioff zone), from which we obtained equi-depth points of the plate boundary. These equi-depth points were then approximated by spline interpolation technique to eliminate shorter wave length undulation (<50-100 km). The obtained

  3. Boundary-layer transition on a plate subjected to simultaneous spanwise and chordwise pressure gradients

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Boldman, D. R.; Brinich, P. F.

    1974-01-01

    The boundary-layer transition on a short plate was studied by means of the china-clay visual technique. The plate model was mounted in a wind tunnel so that it was subjected to small simultaneous spanwise and chordwise pressure gradients. Results of the experimental study, which was performed at three subsonic velocities, indicated that the transition pattern was appreciably curved in the spanwise direction but quite smooth and well behaved. Reasonable comparisons between predictions of transition and experiment were obtained from two finite-difference two-dimensional boundary-layer calculation methods which incorporated transition models based on the concept of a transition intermittency factor.

  4. Upper plate contraction north of the migrating Mendocino triple junction northern California: Implications for partitioning of strain

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McCrory, P.A.

    2000-01-01

    Geologic measurement of permanent contraction across the Cascadia subduction margin constrains one component of the tectonic deformation along the convergent plate boundary, the component critical for the seismic hazard assessment of crustal faults. A comprehensive survey of active faults in onshore subduction margin rocks at the southern end of the Cascadia subduction zone indicates that these thrust faults accommodate ??10 mm/yr of convergence oriented 020??-045??. Seismotectonic models of subduction zones typically assign this upper plate strain to the estimate of aseismic slip on the megathrust. Geodetic models include this permanent crustal strain within estimates of elastic strain accumulation on the megathrust. Both types of models underestimate the seismic hazard associated with crustal faults. Subtracting the observed contraction from the plate convergence rate (40-50 mm/yr; directed 040??-055??) leaves 30-40 mm/yr of convergence to be partitioned between slip on the megathrust, contraction within the southern Juan de Fuca plate, and crustal contraction outside the subduction complex rocks. This simple estimate of slip partitioning neglects the discrepancy between the plate convergence and contraction directions in the vicinity of the Mendocino triple junction. The San Andreas and Cascadia limbs of the Mendocino triple junction are not collinear. The eastern edge of the broad San Andreas boundary is ??85 km east of the Cascadia subduction boundary, and across this zone the Pacific plate converges directly with the North America plate. The skewed orientation of crustal structures just north of the leading edge of the Pacific plate suggests that they are deforming in a hybrid stress field resulting from both Juan de Fuca-North America motion and Pacific-North America motion. The composite convergence direction (50 mm/yr: directed 023??) is consistent with the compressive stress axis (020??) inferred from focal mechanisms of crustal earthquakes in the

  5. In-Flight Boundary-Layer Transition on a Large Flat Plate at Supersonic Speeds

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Banks, Daniel W.; Fredericks, Michael Alan; Tracy, Richard R.; Matisheck, Jason R.; Vanecek, Neal D.

    2012-01-01

    A flight experiment was conducted to investigate the pressure distribution, local flow conditions, and boundary-layer transition characteristics on a large flat plate in flight at supersonic speeds up to Mach 2.0. The primary objective of the test was to characterize the local flow field in preparation for future tests of a high Reynolds number natural laminar flow test article. The tests used a F-15B testbed aircraft with a bottom centerline mounted test fixture. A second objective was to determine the boundary-layer transition characteristics on the flat plate and the effectiveness of using a simplified surface coating for future laminar flow flight tests employing infrared thermography. Boundary-layer transition was captured using an onboard infrared imaging system. The infrared imagery was captured in both analog and digital formats. Surface pressures were measured with electronically scanned pressure modules connected to 60 surface-mounted pressure orifices. The local flow field was measured with five 5-hole conical probes mounted near the leading edge of the test fixture. Flow field measurements revealed the local flow characteristics including downwash, sidewash, and local Mach number. Results also indicated that the simplified surface coating did not provide sufficient insulation from the metallic structure, which likely had a substantial effect on boundary-layer transition compared with that of an adiabatic surface. Cold wall conditions were predominant during the acceleration to maximum Mach number, and warm wall conditions were evident during the subsequent deceleration. The infrared imaging system was able to capture shock wave impingement on the surface of the flat plate in addition to indicating laminar-to-turbulent boundary-layer transition.

  6. Crustal Deformation at the Arabian Plate-Boundary observed by InSAR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jonsson, S.; Cavalié, O.; Akoglu, A. M.; Wang, T.; Xu, W.; Feng, G.; Dutta, R.; Abdullin, A. K.

    2013-12-01

    The Arabian plate is bounded by a variety of active plate boundaries, with extension in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden to the south, compression in Turkey and Iran to the north, and transform faults to the west and to the east. Internally, however, the Arabian plate has been shown to be tectonically rather stable, despite evidence of recent volcanism and earthquake faulting. We use InSAR observations to study recent tectonic and volcanic activity at several locations at the Arabian plate boundary as well within the plate itself. The region near the triple junction between the Arabian, Eurasian, and Anatolian plates has often been the focus of studies on continental deformation behavior and interseismic deformation. Here we use large-scale InSAR data processing to map the deformation near the triple junction and find the deformation to be focused on major faults with little intra-plate deformation. The eastern part of the East Anatolian Fault appears to have a very shallow locking depth with limited fault-normal deformation. Several major earthquakes that have occurred in recent years on the Arabian plate boundary, including the 2011 magnitude 7.1 Van earthquake in eastern Turkey. It occurred as a result of convergence of the Arabian plate towards Eurasia and caused significant surface deformation that we have analyzed with multiple coseismic InSAR, GPS, and coastal uplift observations. We use high-resolution Cosmo-Skymed and TerraSAR-X data to derive 3D coseismic displacements from offsets alone, as some of the interferograms are almost completely incoherent. By identifying point-like targets within the images, we were able to derive accurate pixel offsets between SAR sub-images containing such targets, which we used to estimate the 3D coseismic displacements. The derived 3D displacement field helped in constraining the causative northward dipping thrust-fault. The Qadimah fault is a recently discovered fault located on the Red Sea coast north of Jeddah and under the

  7. Comments on the Parameters and Processes that Affect the Preservation Potential and Style of Oblique-Divergent Plate Boundaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Umhoefer, P. J.

    2014-12-01

    Oblique-divergent or transtensional zones present particular challenges in ancient belts because of the poor preservation potential of the thinned continental crust and young oceanic crust. Many oblique belts will preferentially preserve their boundary zones that lie within continents rather than the main plate boundary zone, which will be at a much lower elevation and composed of denser crust. Zones of tectonic escape or strike-slip overprinting of arcs or plateaus deform continental crust and may be better preserved. Here I highlight parameters and processes that have major effects on oblique divergent belts. Strain partitioning is common, but not ubiquitous, along and across oblique boundaries; the causes of partitioning are not always clear and make this especially vexing for work in ancient belts. Partitioning causes complexity in the patterns of structures at all scales. Inherited structures commonly determine the orientation and style of structures along oblique boundaries and can control the pattern of faults across transtensional belts. Regionally, inherited trends of arcs or other 1000-km-scale features can control boundary structures. Experiments and natural examples suggest that oblique boundary zones contain less of a record of strike-slip faulting and more extensional structures. The obliquity of divergence produces predictable families of structures that typify (i) strike-slip dominated zones (obliquity <~20°), (ii) mixed zones (~20° - ~35°), and (iii) extension dominated zones (>~35°). The combination of partitioning and mixed structures in oblique zones means that the boundaries of belts with large-magnitude strike-slip faulting will commonly preserve little of no record of that faulting history. Plate boundaries localize strain onto the main plate boundary structures from the broader plate boundary and therefore the boundary zones commonly preserve the earlier structures more than later structures, a major problem in interpreting ancient belts

  8. The boundary between the Indian and Asian tectonic plates below Tibet

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Junmeng; Yuan, Xiaohui; Liu, Hongbing; Kumar, Prakash; Pei, Shunping; Kind, Rainer; Zhang, Zhongjie; Teng, Jiwen; Ding, Lin; Gao, Xing; Xu, Qiang; Wang, Wei

    2010-01-01

    The fate of the colliding Indian and Asian tectonic plates below the Tibetan high plateau may be visualized by, in addition to seismic tomography, mapping the deep seismic discontinuities, like the crust-mantle boundary (Moho), the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB), or the discontinuities at 410 and 660 km depth. We herein present observations of seismic discontinuities with the P and S receiver function techniques beneath central and western Tibet along two new profiles and discuss the results in connection with results from earlier profiles, which did observe the LAB. The LAB of the Indian and Asian plates is well-imaged by several profiles and suggests a changing mode of India-Asia collision in the east-west direction. From eastern Himalayan syntaxis to the western edge of the Tarim Basin, the Indian lithosphere is underthrusting Tibet at an increasingly shallower angle and reaching progressively further to the north. A particular lithospheric region was formed in northern and eastern Tibet as a crush zone between the two colliding plates, the existence of which is marked by high temperature, low mantle seismic wavespeed (correlating with late arriving signals from the 410 discontinuity), poor Sn propagation, east and southeast oriented global positioning system displacements, and strikingly larger seismic (SKS) anisotropy. PMID:20534567

  9. The boundary between the Indian and Asian tectonic plates below Tibet.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Junmeng; Yuan, Xiaohui; Liu, Hongbing; Kumar, Prakash; Pei, Shunping; Kind, Rainer; Zhang, Zhongjie; Teng, Jiwen; Ding, Lin; Gao, Xing; Xu, Qiang; Wang, Wei

    2010-06-22

    The fate of the colliding Indian and Asian tectonic plates below the Tibetan high plateau may be visualized by, in addition to seismic tomography, mapping the deep seismic discontinuities, like the crust-mantle boundary (Moho), the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB), or the discontinuities at 410 and 660 km depth. We herein present observations of seismic discontinuities with the P and S receiver function techniques beneath central and western Tibet along two new profiles and discuss the results in connection with results from earlier profiles, which did observe the LAB. The LAB of the Indian and Asian plates is well-imaged by several profiles and suggests a changing mode of India-Asia collision in the east-west direction. From eastern Himalayan syntaxis to the western edge of the Tarim Basin, the Indian lithosphere is underthrusting Tibet at an increasingly shallower angle and reaching progressively further to the north. A particular lithospheric region was formed in northern and eastern Tibet as a crush zone between the two colliding plates, the existence of which is marked by high temperature, low mantle seismic wavespeed (correlating with late arriving signals from the 410 discontinuity), poor Sn propagation, east and southeast oriented global positioning system displacements, and strikingly larger seismic (SKS) anisotropy.

  10. Architectural Blueprint for Plate Boundary Observatories based on interoperable Data Management Platforms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kerschke, D. I.; Häner, R.; Schurr, B.; Oncken, O.; Wächter, J.

    2014-12-01

    Interoperable data management platforms play an increasing role in the advancement of knowledge and technology in many scientific disciplines. Through high quality services they support the establishment of efficient and innovative research environments. Well-designed research environments can facilitate the sustainable utilization, exchange, and re-use of scientific data and functionality by using standardized community models. Together with innovative 3D/4D visualization, these concepts provide added value in improving scientific knowledge-gain, even across the boundaries of disciplines. A project benefiting from the added value is the Integrated Plate boundary Observatory in Chile (IPOC). IPOC is a European-South American network to study earthquakes and deformation at the Chilean continental margin and to monitor the plate boundary system for capturing an anticipated great earthquake in a seismic gap. In contrast to conventional observatories that monitor individual signals only, IPOC captures a large range of different processes through various observation methods (e.g., seismographs, GPS, magneto-telluric sensors, creep-meter, accelerometer, InSAR). For IPOC a conceptual design has been devised that comprises an architectural blueprint for a data management platform based on common and standardized data models, protocols, and encodings as well as on an exclusive use of Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) including visualization components. Following the principles of event-driven service-oriented architectures, the design enables novel processes by sharing and re-using functionality and information on the basis of innovative data mining and data fusion technologies. This platform can help to improve the understanding of the physical processes underlying plate deformations as well as the natural hazards induced by them. Through the use of standards, this blueprint can not only be facilitated for other plate observing systems (e.g., the European Plate

  11. Current Plate Motion Across the Southwest Indian Ridge: Implications for the Diffuse Oceanic Plate Boundary Between Nubia and Somalia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horner-Johnson, B. C.; Cowles, S. M.; Gordon, R. G.; Argus, D. F.

    2001-12-01

    Prior studies of plate motion data along the Southwest Indian Ridge (SWIR) have produced results that conflict in detail. Chu & Gordon [1999], from an analysis of 59 spreading rates averaged over 3 Myr and of the azimuths of active transform faults, found that the data are most consistent with a diffuse Nubia-Somalia plate boundary where it intersects the SWIR. When they solve for the best-fitting hypothetical narrow boundary, they find that it lies near 37° E, east of the Prince Edward fracture zone. They find a Nubia-Somalia pole of rotation near the east coast of South Africa. In contrast, Lemaux, Gordon, and Royer [2001], from an analysis of 237 crossings of marine magnetic anomaly 5 (11 Ma), find that most of the motion is accommodated in a narrow zone, most likely along the ``inactive'' trace of the Andrew Bain fracture zone complex (ABFZC), which intersects the SWIR near 32° E. They find a pole well to the west of, and probably to the southwest of, the pole of rotation found by Chu & Gordon. Their pole indicates mainly strike-slip motion along the ``inactive'' ABFZC. To resolve these conflicting results, we determined a new greatly expanded and spatially much denser set of 243 spreading rates and analyzed available bathymetric data of active transform faults along the SWIR. The data show that the African oceanic lithosphere spreading away from the SWIR cannot simply be two plates divided by a single narrow boundary. Our interpretation of the data is as follows. Near the SWIR, there is a diffuse boundary with a western limit near the ABFZC and an eastern limit near 63.5° E. Slip is partitioned in this wide boundary. Somewhere near the ABFZC (most likely the ABFZC itself) is a concentrated locus of right-lateral shearing parallel to the ABFZC whereas contraction perpendicular to the ABFZC is accommodated east of the ABFZC, perhaps over a very broad zone.

  12. Triple Junction Reorganizations: A Mechanism for the Initiation of the Great Pacific Fractures Zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pockalny, R. A.; Larson, R. L.; Grindlay, N. R.

    2001-12-01

    There are two general explanations for the initiation of oceanic transform faults that eventually evolve into fracture zones: transforms inherited from continental break-up and transforms acquired in response to a change in plate motions. These models are sufficient to explain the fracture zones in oceans formed by continental break-up. However, neither model accounts for the initiation of the large-offset, great Pacific fracture zones that characterized the Pacific-Farallon plate boundary prior to 25 Ma. Primarily, these models are unable to explain why the initial age of these fracture zones becomes progressively younger from the Mendocino fracture zone (\\~{ } 160 Ma) southward down to the Resolution FZ (\\~{ }84 Ma). We propose a new transform initiation mechanism for the great Pacific fracture zones, which is intimately tied to tectonic processes at triple junctions and directly related to the growth of the Pacific Plate. Recently acquired multibeam bathymetry and marine geophysics data collected along Pandora's Escarpment in the southwestern Pacific have identified the escarpment as the trace of the Pacific-Farallon-Phoenix triple junction on the Pacific Plate. Regional changes in the trend of the triple junction trace between 84-121 Ma roughly coincide with the initiation of the Marquesas, Austral and Resolution fracture zones. Bathymetry and backscatter data from the projected intersections of these fracture zones with the triple junction trace identify several anomalous structures that suggest tectonic reorganizations of the triple junction. We believe this reorganization created the initial transform fault(s) that ultimately became the large-offset, great Pacific fracture zones. Several possible mechanisms for initiating the transform faults are explored including microplate formation, ridge-tip propagation, and spontaneous transform fault formation.

  13. Kinematics and dynamics of the East Pacific Rise linked to a stable, deep-mantle upwelling [Kinematics and dynamics of the East Pacific Rise linked to whole mantel convective motions

    SciTech Connect

    Rowley, David B.; Forte, Alessandro M.; Rowan, Christopher J.

    Earth’s tectonic plates are generally considered to be driven largely by negative buoyancy associated with subduction of oceanic lithosphere. In this context, mid-ocean ridges (MORs) are passive plate boundaries whose divergence accommodates flow driven by subduction of oceanic slabs at trenches. We show that over the past 80 million years (My), the East Pacific Rise (EPR), Earth’s dominant MOR, has been characterized by limited ridge-perpendicular migration and persistent, asymmetric ridge accretion that are anomalous relative to other MORs. We reconstruct the subduction-related buoyancy fluxes of plates on either side of the EPR. The general expectation is that greater slab pullmore » should correlate with faster plate motion and faster spreading at the EPR. Moreover, asymmetry in slab pull on either side of the EPR should correlate with either ridge migration or enhanced plate velocity in the direction of greater slab pull. Based on our analysis, none of the expected correlations are evident. This implies that other forces significantly contribute to EPR behavior. We explain these observations using mantle flow calculations based on globally integrated buoyancy distributions that require core-mantle boundary heat flux of up to 20 TW. The time-dependent mantle flow predictions yield a long-lived deep-seated upwelling that has its highest radial velocity under the EPR and is inferred to control its observed kinematics. Lastly, the mantle-wide upwelling beneath the EPR drives horizontal components of asthenospheric flows beneath the plates that are similarly asymmetric but faster than the overlying surface plates, thereby contributing to plate motions through viscous tractions in the Pacific region.« less

  14. Kinematics and dynamics of the East Pacific Rise linked to a stable, deep-mantle upwelling [Kinematics and dynamics of the East Pacific Rise linked to whole mantel convective motions

    DOE PAGES

    Rowley, David B.; Forte, Alessandro M.; Rowan, Christopher J.; ...

    2016-12-23

    Earth’s tectonic plates are generally considered to be driven largely by negative buoyancy associated with subduction of oceanic lithosphere. In this context, mid-ocean ridges (MORs) are passive plate boundaries whose divergence accommodates flow driven by subduction of oceanic slabs at trenches. We show that over the past 80 million years (My), the East Pacific Rise (EPR), Earth’s dominant MOR, has been characterized by limited ridge-perpendicular migration and persistent, asymmetric ridge accretion that are anomalous relative to other MORs. We reconstruct the subduction-related buoyancy fluxes of plates on either side of the EPR. The general expectation is that greater slab pullmore » should correlate with faster plate motion and faster spreading at the EPR. Moreover, asymmetry in slab pull on either side of the EPR should correlate with either ridge migration or enhanced plate velocity in the direction of greater slab pull. Based on our analysis, none of the expected correlations are evident. This implies that other forces significantly contribute to EPR behavior. We explain these observations using mantle flow calculations based on globally integrated buoyancy distributions that require core-mantle boundary heat flux of up to 20 TW. The time-dependent mantle flow predictions yield a long-lived deep-seated upwelling that has its highest radial velocity under the EPR and is inferred to control its observed kinematics. Lastly, the mantle-wide upwelling beneath the EPR drives horizontal components of asthenospheric flows beneath the plates that are similarly asymmetric but faster than the overlying surface plates, thereby contributing to plate motions through viscous tractions in the Pacific region.« less

  15. Laminar-Boundary-Layer Oscillations and Transition on a Flat Plate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schubauer, G B; Skramstad, H K

    1948-01-01

    This is an account of an investigation in which oscillations were discovered in the laminar boundary layer along a flat plate. These oscillations were found during the course of an experiment in which transition from laminar to turbulent flow was being studied on the plate as the turbulence in the wind stream was being reduced to unusually low values by means of damping screens. The first part of the paper deals with experimental methods and apparatus, measurements of turbulence and sound, and studies of transition. A description is then given of the manner in which oscillations were discovered and how they were found to be related to transition, and then how controlled oscillations were produced and studied in detail.

  16. Philippine Sea Plate inception, evolution, and consumption with special emphasis on the early stages of Izu-Bonin-Mariana subduction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lallemand, Serge

    2016-12-01

    We compiled the most relevant data acquired throughout the Philippine Sea Plate (PSP) from the early expeditions to the most recent. We also analyzed the various explanatory models in light of this updated dataset. The following main conclusions are discussed in this study. (1) The Izanagi slab detachment beneath the East Asia margin around 60-55 Ma likely triggered the Oki-Daito plume occurrence, Mesozoic proto-PSP splitting, shortening and then failure across the paleo-transform boundary between the proto-PSP and the Pacific Plate, Izu-Bonin-Mariana subduction initiation and ultimately PSP inception. (2) The initial splitting phase of the composite proto-PSP under the plume influence at ˜54-48 Ma led to the formation of the long-lived West Philippine Basin and short-lived oceanic basins, part of whose crust has been ambiguously called "fore-arc basalts" (FABs). (3) Shortening across the paleo-transform boundary evolved into thrusting within the Pacific Plate at ˜52-50 Ma, allowing it to subduct beneath the newly formed PSP, which was composed of an alternance of thick Mesozoic terranes and thin oceanic lithosphere. (4) The first magmas rising from the shallow mantle corner, after being hydrated by the subducting Pacific crust beneath the young oceanic crust near the upper plate spreading centers at ˜49-48 Ma were boninites. Both the so-called FABs and the boninites formed at a significant distance from the incipient trench, not in a fore-arc position as previously claimed. The magmas erupted for 15 m.y. in some places, probably near the intersections between back-arc spreading centers and the arc. (5) As the Pacific crust reached greater depths and the oceanic basins cooled and thickened at ˜44-45 Ma, the composition of the lavas evolved into high-Mg andesites and then arc tholeiites and calc-alkaline andesites. (6) Tectonic erosion processes removed about 150-200 km of frontal margin during the Neogene, consuming most or all of the Pacific ophiolite

  17. Faunal breaks and species composition of Indo-Pacific corals: the role of plate tectonics, environment and habitat distribution.

    PubMed

    Keith, S A; Baird, A H; Hughes, T P; Madin, J S; Connolly, S R

    2013-07-22

    Species richness gradients are ubiquitous in nature, but the mechanisms that generate and maintain these patterns at macroecological scales remain unresolved. We use a new approach that focuses on overlapping geographical ranges of species to reveal that Indo-Pacific corals are assembled within 11 distinct faunal provinces. Province limits are characterized by co-occurrence of multiple species range boundaries. Unexpectedly, these faunal breaks are poorly predicted by contemporary environmental conditions and the present-day distribution of habitat. Instead, faunal breaks show striking concordance with geological features (tectonic plates and mantle plume tracks). The depth range over which a species occurs, its larval development rate and genus age are important determinants of the likelihood that species will straddle faunal breaks. Our findings indicate that historical processes, habitat heterogeneity and species colonization ability account for more of the present-day biogeographical patterns of corals than explanations based on the contemporary distribution of reefs or environmental conditions.

  18. Faunal breaks and species composition of Indo-Pacific corals: the role of plate tectonics, environment and habitat distribution

    PubMed Central

    Keith, S. A.; Baird, A. H.; Hughes, T. P.; Madin, J. S.; Connolly, S. R.

    2013-01-01

    Species richness gradients are ubiquitous in nature, but the mechanisms that generate and maintain these patterns at macroecological scales remain unresolved. We use a new approach that focuses on overlapping geographical ranges of species to reveal that Indo-Pacific corals are assembled within 11 distinct faunal provinces. Province limits are characterized by co-occurrence of multiple species range boundaries. Unexpectedly, these faunal breaks are poorly predicted by contemporary environmental conditions and the present-day distribution of habitat. Instead, faunal breaks show striking concordance with geological features (tectonic plates and mantle plume tracks). The depth range over which a species occurs, its larval development rate and genus age are important determinants of the likelihood that species will straddle faunal breaks. Our findings indicate that historical processes, habitat heterogeneity and species colonization ability account for more of the present-day biogeographical patterns of corals than explanations based on the contemporary distribution of reefs or environmental conditions. PMID:23698011

  19. Boundary layer flow of air over water on a flat plate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nelson, John; Alving, Amy E.; Joseph, Daniel D.

    1993-01-01

    A non-similar boundary layer theory for air blowing over a water layer on a flat plate is formulated and studied as a two-fluid problem in which the position of the interface is unknown. The problem is considered at large Reynolds number (based on x), away from the leading edge. A simple non-similar analytic solution of the problem is derived for which the interface height is proportional to x(sub 1/4) and the water and air flow satisfy the Blasius boundary layer equations, with a linear profile in the water and a Blasius profile in the air. Numerical studies of the initial value problem suggests that this asymptotic, non-similar air-water boundary layer solution is a global attractor for all initial conditions.

  20. Prediction and measurement of heat transfer rates for the shock-induced unsteady laminar boundary layer on a flat plate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cook, W. J.

    1972-01-01

    The unsteady laminar boundary layer induced by the flow-initiating shock wave passing over a flat plate mounted in a shock tube was theoretically and experimentally studied in terms of heat transfer rates to the plate for shock speeds ranging from 1.695 to 7.34 km/sec. The theory presented by Cook and Chapman for the shock-induced unsteady boundary layer on a plate is reviewed with emphasis on unsteady heat transfer. A method of measuring time-dependent heat-transfer rates using thin-film heat-flux gages and an associated data reduction technique are outlined in detail. Particular consideration is given to heat-flux measurement in short-duration ionized shocktube flows. Experimental unsteady plate heat transfer rates obtained in both air and nitrogen using thin-film heat-flux gages generally agree well with theoretical predictions. The experimental results indicate that the theory continues to predict the unsteady boundary layer behavior after the shock wave leaves the trailing edge of the plate even though the theory is strictly applicable only for the time interval in which the shock remains on the plate.

  1. Finite-Difference Solutions for Compressible Laminar Boundary-Layer Flows of a Dusty Gas over a Semi-Infinite Flat Plate.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1986-08-01

    AD-A174 952 FINITE - DIFFERENCE SOLUTIONS FOR CONPRESSIBLE LANINAR 1/2 BOUNDARY-LAYER FLOUS (U) TORONTO UNIV DOWNSVIEW (ONTARIO) INST FOR AEROSPACE...dilute dusty gas over a semi-infinite flat plate. Details are given of the impliit finite , difference schemes as well as the boundary conditions... FINITE - DIFFERENCE SOLUTIONS FOR COMPRESSIBLE LAMINAR BOUNDARY-LAYER FLOWS OF A DUSTY GAS OVER A SEMI-INFINITE FLAT PLATE by B. Y. Wang and I. I

  2. The San Andreas fault experiment. [gross tectonic plates relative velocity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, D. E.; Vonbun, F. O.

    1973-01-01

    A plan was developed during 1971 to determine gross tectonic plate motions along the San Andreas Fault System in California. Knowledge of the gross motion along the total fault system is an essential component in the construction of realistic deformation models of fault regions. Such mathematical models will be used in the future for studies which will eventually lead to prediction of major earthquakes. The main purpose of the experiment described is the determination of the relative velocity of the North American and the Pacific Plates. This motion being so extremely small, cannot be measured directly but can be deduced from distance measurements between points on opposite sites of the plate boundary taken over a number of years.

  3. Seismotectonics of the Lwandle-Nubia plate boundary between South Africa and the Southwest Indian Ridge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hartnady, Chris; Okal, Emile; Calais, Eric; Stamps, Sarah; Saria, Elifuraha

    2013-04-01

    The Lwandle (LW) plate shares a boundary with the Nubia (NU) plate, extending from a diffuse triple junction with the Rovuma plate in Southern Mozambique to a triple junction with the Antarctic plate along a segment of the Southwest Indian Ridge (SWIR). The LW-NU boundary terminates in the ~750 km-long, complex transform of the Andrew Bain Fracture Zone (ABFZ), but its exact locus is still unclear. Recent works locate it along the eastern boundary of the submarine Mozambique Ridge, parallel to the pre-existing, oceanic transform-fault fabric. However, an early concept of the LW block ('ambiguous region' of Hartnady, 1990, Fig. 2) indicates a more westerly trajectory in the north that includes parts of South Africa, with a southerly extension across old oceanic crust of the submarine Natal Valley and Transkei Basin. This proposed boundary is marked by several, aligned epicentres of moderate to strong earthquakes (1941, 1942, 1956, 1969, 1972, 1975, 1981 and 1989). Our re-examination of seismographic records from the 1975 'intraplate' earthquake (-37.62°N, 30.98°E, mb5.0), in the oceanic crust of the distal Transkei Basin, shows a thrust-faulting focal mechanism along a nodal plane striking N272°E. The largest (ML4.2) of a series of three small earthquakes in the Natal Valley in 2009, close to a zone of recent seafloor deformation mapped in 1992, has similar first-motion patterns at Southern African seismograph stations. When the 1975 slip-vector result (N173°E) is combined with a normal-faulting slip vector (N078°E) from a 1986 onland earthquake (-30.53°N, 28.84°E, mb5.0) near the Lesotho-KZN border, and both are incorporated into the wider data-set previously used to solve for East African Rift kinematics, they produce a LW-NU rotation pole that is located south of Africa, near the Agulhas Plateau, and approximately 950 km from the Natal Valley deformation zone. The modeled low rate of right-lateral, LW-NU slip (~0.50-0.75 mm/yr) across this LW-NU boundary

  4. On approximating guided waves in plates with thin anisotropic coatings by means of effective boundary conditions

    PubMed

    Niklasson; Datta; Dunn

    2000-09-01

    In this paper, effective boundary conditions for elastic wave propagation in plates with thin coatings are derived. These effective boundary conditions are used to obtain an approximate dispersion relation for guided waves in an isotropic plate with thin anisotropic coating layers. The accuracy of the effective boundary conditions is investigated numerically by comparison with exact solutions for two different material systems. The systems considered consist of a metallic core with thin superconducting coatings. It is shown that for wavelengths long compared to the coating thickness there is excellent agreement between the approximate and exact solutions for both systems. Furthermore, numerical results presented might be used to characterize coating properties by ultrasonic techniques.

  5. Kinematics and dynamics of the East Pacific Rise linked to a stable, deep-mantle upwelling

    PubMed Central

    Rowley, David B.; Forte, Alessandro M.; Rowan, Christopher J.; Glišović, Petar; Moucha, Robert; Grand, Stephen P.; Simmons, Nathan A.

    2016-01-01

    Earth’s tectonic plates are generally considered to be driven largely by negative buoyancy associated with subduction of oceanic lithosphere. In this context, mid-ocean ridges (MORs) are passive plate boundaries whose divergence accommodates flow driven by subduction of oceanic slabs at trenches. We show that over the past 80 million years (My), the East Pacific Rise (EPR), Earth’s dominant MOR, has been characterized by limited ridge-perpendicular migration and persistent, asymmetric ridge accretion that are anomalous relative to other MORs. We reconstruct the subduction-related buoyancy fluxes of plates on either side of the EPR. The general expectation is that greater slab pull should correlate with faster plate motion and faster spreading at the EPR. Moreover, asymmetry in slab pull on either side of the EPR should correlate with either ridge migration or enhanced plate velocity in the direction of greater slab pull. Based on our analysis, none of the expected correlations are evident. This implies that other forces significantly contribute to EPR behavior. We explain these observations using mantle flow calculations based on globally integrated buoyancy distributions that require core-mantle boundary heat flux of up to 20 TW. The time-dependent mantle flow predictions yield a long-lived deep-seated upwelling that has its highest radial velocity under the EPR and is inferred to control its observed kinematics. The mantle-wide upwelling beneath the EPR drives horizontal components of asthenospheric flows beneath the plates that are similarly asymmetric but faster than the overlying surface plates, thereby contributing to plate motions through viscous tractions in the Pacific region. PMID:28028535

  6. Kinematics and dynamics of the East Pacific Rise linked to a stable, deep-mantle upwelling.

    PubMed

    Rowley, David B; Forte, Alessandro M; Rowan, Christopher J; Glišović, Petar; Moucha, Robert; Grand, Stephen P; Simmons, Nathan A

    2016-12-01

    Earth's tectonic plates are generally considered to be driven largely by negative buoyancy associated with subduction of oceanic lithosphere. In this context, mid-ocean ridges (MORs) are passive plate boundaries whose divergence accommodates flow driven by subduction of oceanic slabs at trenches. We show that over the past 80 million years (My), the East Pacific Rise (EPR), Earth's dominant MOR, has been characterized by limited ridge-perpendicular migration and persistent, asymmetric ridge accretion that are anomalous relative to other MORs. We reconstruct the subduction-related buoyancy fluxes of plates on either side of the EPR. The general expectation is that greater slab pull should correlate with faster plate motion and faster spreading at the EPR. Moreover, asymmetry in slab pull on either side of the EPR should correlate with either ridge migration or enhanced plate velocity in the direction of greater slab pull. Based on our analysis, none of the expected correlations are evident. This implies that other forces significantly contribute to EPR behavior. We explain these observations using mantle flow calculations based on globally integrated buoyancy distributions that require core-mantle boundary heat flux of up to 20 TW. The time-dependent mantle flow predictions yield a long-lived deep-seated upwelling that has its highest radial velocity under the EPR and is inferred to control its observed kinematics. The mantle-wide upwelling beneath the EPR drives horizontal components of asthenospheric flows beneath the plates that are similarly asymmetric but faster than the overlying surface plates, thereby contributing to plate motions through viscous tractions in the Pacific region.

  7. Near Continuum Velocity and Temperature Coupled Compressible Boundary Layer Flow over a Flat Plate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Xin; Cai, Chunpei

    2017-04-01

    The problem of a compressible gas flows over a flat plate with the velocity-slip and temperature-jump boundary conditions are being studied. The standard single- shooting method is applied to obtain the exact solutions for velocity and temperature profiles when the momentum and energy equations are weakly coupled. A double-shooting method is applied if these two equations are closely coupled. If the temperature affects the velocity directly, more significant velocity slip happens at locations closer to the plate's leading edge, and inflections on the velocity profiles appear, indicating flows may become unstable. As a consequence, the temperature-jump and velocity-slip boundary conditions may trigger earlier flow transitions from a laminar to a turbulent flow state.

  8. The P-wave boundary of the Large-Low Shear Velocity Province beneath the Pacific

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frost, Daniel A.; Rost, Sebastian

    2014-10-01

    The Large Low Shear Velocity Provinces (LLSVPs) in the lower mantle represent volumetrically significant thermal or chemical or thermo-chemical heterogeneities. Their structure and boundaries have been widely studied, mainly using S-waves, but much less is known about their signature in the P-wavefield. We use an extensive dataset recorded at USArray to create, for the first time, a high-resolution map of the location, shape, sharpness, and extent of the boundary of the Pacific LLSVP using P (Pdiff)-waves. We find that the northern edge of the Pacific LLSVP is shallow dipping (26° relative to the horizontal) and diffuse (∼120 km wide transition zone) whereas the eastern edge is steeper dipping (70°) and apparently sharp (∼40 km wide). We trace the LLSVP boundary up to ∼500 km above the CMB in most areas, and 700 km between 120° and 90°W at the eastern extent of the boundary. Apparent P-wave velocity drops are ∼1-3% relative to PREM, indicating a strong influence of LLSVPs on P-wave velocity, at least in the high-frequency wavefield, in contrast to previous studies. A localised patch with a greater velocity drop of ∼15-25% is detected, defined by large magnitude gradients of the travel-time residuals. We identify this as a likely location of an Ultra-Low Velocity Zone (ULVZ), matching the location of a previously detected ULVZ in this area. The boundary of a separate low velocity anomaly, of a similar height to the LLSVP, is detected in the north-west Pacific, matching tomographic images. This outlier appears to be connected to the main LLSVP through a narrow channel close to the CMB and may be in the process of joining or splitting from the main LLSVP. We also see strong velocity increases in the lower mantle to the east of the LLSVP, likely detecting subducted material beneath central America. The LLSVP P-wave boundary is similar to that determined in high-resolution S-wave studies and follows the -0.4% ΔVS iso-velocity contour in the S40RTS

  9. Tectonic lineaments in the cenozoic volcanics of southern Guatemala: Evidence for a broad continental plate boundary zone

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Baltuck, M.; Dixon, T. H.

    1984-01-01

    The northern Caribbean plate boundary has been undergoing left lateral strike slip motion since middle Tertiary time. The western part of the boundary occurs in a complex tectonic zone in the continental crust of Guatemala and southernmost Mexico, along the Chixoy-Polochic, Motogua and possibly Jocotan-Chamelecon faults. Prominent lineaments visible in radar imagery in the Neogene volcanic belt of southern Guatemala and western El Salvador were mapped and interpreted to suggest southwest extensions of this already broad plate boundary zone. Because these extensions can be traced beneath Quaternary volcanic cover, it is thought that this newly mapped fault zone is active and is accommodating some of the strain related to motion between the North American and Caribbean plates. Onshore exposures of the Motoqua-Polochic fault systems are characterized by abundant, tectonically emplaced ultramafic rocks. A similar mode of emplacement for these off shore ultramafics, is suggested.

  10. Strength and Deformation Rate of Plate Boundaries: The Rheological Effects of Grain Size Reduction, Structure, and Serpentinization.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Montesi, L.; Gueydan, F.

    2016-12-01

    Global strain rate maps reveal 1000-fold contrasts between plate interiors, oceanic or continental diffuse plate boundaries and narrow plate boundaries. Here, we show that rheological models based on the concepts of shear zone localization and the evolution of rock structure upon strain can explain these strain rate contrasts. Ductile shear zones constitute a mechanical paradox in the lithosphere. As every plastic deformation mechanism is strain-rate-hardening, ductile rocks are expected to deform at low strain rate and low stress (broad zone of deformation). Localized ductile shear zones require either a localized forcing (locally high stress) or a thermal or structural anomaly in the shear zone; either can be inherited or develop progressively as rocks deform. We previously identified the most effective process at each depth level of the lithosphere. In the upper crust and middle crust, rocks fabric controls localization. Grain size reduction is the most efficient mechanism in the uppermost mantle. This analysis can be generalized to consider a complete lithospheric section. We assume strain rate does not vary with depth and that the depth-integrated strength of the lithospheric does not change over time, as the total force is controlled by external process such as mantle convection and plate and slab buoyancy. Reducing grain size from a coarse value typical of undeformed peridotite to a value in agreement with the stress level (piezometer) while letting that stress vary from depth to depth (the integrated stress remains the same) increases the lithospheric strain rate by about a factor of 1000. This can explain the development of diffuse plate boundaries. The slightly higher strain rate of continental plate boundary may reflect development of a layered rock fabric in the middle crust. Narrow plate boundaries require additional weakening process. The high heat flux near mid-ocean ridge implies a thin lithosphere, which enhances stress (for constant integrated

  11. Paleocene Pacific Plate reorganization mirrored in formation of the Suvarov Trough, Manihiki Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pietsch, Ricarda; Uenzelmann-Neben, Gabriele

    2016-10-01

    The Suvarov Trough is a graben structure that deviates from the Danger Islands Troughs within the Manihiki Plateau, a Large Igneous Province (LIP) located in the Central Pacific. New high-resolution seismic reflection data provide evidence that the graben formed in two phases during the Paleocene (65-45 Ma). In a first phase extension occurred in southwestward direction, pulling apart the northern part of the Suvarov Trough and a parallel trending unnamed trough. In a second phase a change of extensional force direction occurred from southwest to west-northwest, forming the southern part of the Suvarov Trough that extends onto the High Plateau. The formation of the Suvarov Trough is accompanied by a series of normal fault systems that apparently formed simultaneously. Comparing the seismic results to existing Pacific paleo strain reconstructions, the timing of increased strain and local deformation direction fits well to our findings. We thus suggest that the multiple strike directions of the Suvarov Trough represent an extensional structure that was caused by the major, stepwise Pacific Plate reorganization during the Paleocene.

  12. Central Tropical Pacific Variability And ENSO Response To Changing Climate Boundary Conditions: Evidence From Individual Line Island Foraminifera

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rustic, G. T.; Polissar, P. J.; Ravelo, A. C.; White, S. M.

    2017-12-01

    The El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) plays a dominant role in Earth's climate variability. Paleoceanographic evidence suggests that ENSO has changed in the past, and these changes have been linked to large-scale climatic shifts. While a close relationship between ENSO evolution and climate boundary conditions has been predicted, testing these predictions remains challenging. These climate boundary conditions, including insolation, the mean surface temperature gradient of the tropical Pacific, global ice volume, and tropical thermocline depth, often co-vary and may work together to suppress or enhance the ocean-atmosphere feedbacks that drive ENSO variability. Furthermore, suitable paleo-archives spanning multiple climate states are sparse. We have aimed to test ENSO response to changing climate boundary conditions by generating new reconstructions of mixed-layer variability from sedimentary archives spanning the last three glacial-interglacial cycles from the Central Tropical Pacific Line Islands, where El Niño is strongly expressed. We analyzed Mg/Ca ratios from individual foraminifera to reconstruct mixed-layer variability at discrete time intervals representing combinations of climatic boundary conditions from the middle Holocene to Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 8. We observe changes in the mixed-layer temperature variability during MIS 5 and during the previous interglacial (MIS 7) showing significant reductions in ENSO amplitude. Differences in variability during glacial and interglacial intervals are also observed. Additionally, we reconstructed mixed-layer and thermocline conditions using multi-species Mg/Ca and stable isotope measurements to more fully characterize the state of the Central Tropical Pacific during these intervals. These reconstructions provide us with a unique view of Central Tropical Pacific variability and water-column structure at discrete intervals under varying boundary climate conditions with which to assess factors that shape ENSO

  13. Effect of plate permeability on nonlinear stability of the asymptotic suction boundary layer.

    PubMed

    Wedin, Håkan; Cherubini, Stefania; Bottaro, Alessandro

    2015-07-01

    The nonlinear stability of the asymptotic suction boundary layer is studied numerically, searching for finite-amplitude solutions that bifurcate from the laminar flow state. By changing the boundary conditions for disturbances at the plate from the classical no-slip condition to more physically sound ones, the stability characteristics of the flow may change radically, both for the linearized as well as the nonlinear problem. The wall boundary condition takes into account the permeability K̂ of the plate; for very low permeability, it is acceptable to impose the classical boundary condition (K̂=0). This leads to a Reynolds number of approximately Re(c)=54400 for the onset of linearly unstable waves, and close to Re(g)=3200 for the emergence of nonlinear solutions [F. A. Milinazzo and P. G. Saffman, J. Fluid Mech. 160, 281 (1985); J. H. M. Fransson, Ph.D. thesis, Royal Institute of Technology, KTH, Sweden, 2003]. However, for larger values of the plate's permeability, the lower limit for the existence of linear and nonlinear solutions shifts to significantly lower Reynolds numbers. For the largest permeability studied here, the limit values of the Reynolds numbers reduce down to Re(c)=796 and Re(g)=294. For all cases studied, the solutions bifurcate subcritically toward lower Re, and this leads to the conjecture that they may be involved in the very first stages of a transition scenario similar to the classical route of the Blasius boundary layer initiated by Tollmien-Schlichting (TS) waves. The stability of these nonlinear solutions is also investigated, showing a low-frequency main unstable mode whose growth rate decreases with increasing permeability and with the Reynolds number, following a power law Re(-ρ), where the value of ρ depends on the permeability coefficient K̂. The nonlinear dynamics of the flow in the vicinity of the computed finite-amplitude solutions is finally investigated by direct numerical simulations, providing a viable scenario for

  14. Stress Rotation Across the Cascadia Megathrust Requires a Weak Subduction Plate Boundary at Seismogenic Depths

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, D.; McGuire, J. J.; Liu, Y.; Hardebeck, J.

    2017-12-01

    Despite the great effort spent investigating subduction zones, there are very limited constraints on the stress state on the plate boundary fault at the depth of megathrust earthquakes. Here we utilize a focal mechanism dataset, including observations from the Cascadia Initiative ocean bottom seismograph experiment, to constrain the stress orientations. We present a high-resolution inversion for the principal stress orientations both above and below the thrust interface in the southern Cascadia Subduction zone. The distinctive stresses above and below the interface require a significant stress rotation within 10 km of the plate boundary. To quantify the implications of this rotation for the strength of the plate boundary, we designed an inversion that solves for the absolute stress tensors in a three-layer model subject to assumptions about the strength of the subducting mantle. Our approach utilizes the continuous traction boundary conditions between layers as well as the observed principal stress orientations and the relative magnitude ratios in the crust and subducting mantle as constraints. Our results indicate that the shear stress on the plate boundary fault is likely no more than about 50 MPa at 20 km depth. Regardless of the assumed upper mantle strength, we infer a relatively weak megathrust fault with an effective friction coefficient of 0 to 0.2 at seismogenic depths. The central question for the Cascadia subduction zone is why it remains seismically quiet despite the 300+ years of stress accumulation since the last megathrust earthquake. For example, we also document that no thrust earthquakes were recorded by the 2-year Cascadia Initiative expedition down to magnitude 2.0, despite the stress perturbation generated by a nearby Mw5.7 earthquake on Jan 28th, 2015, on the Mendocino Transform fault. To help answer that question, we provide a new and fundamental constraint on the absolute level of stress accumulation to date in the current seismic cycle. Our

  15. A model for the motion of the Philippine Sea plate consistent with NUVEL-1 and geological data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Seno, Tetsuzo; Stein, Seth; Gripp, Alice E.

    1993-01-01

    We investigate angular velocity vectors of the Philippine Sea (PH) plate relative to the adjacent major plates, Eurasia (EU) and Pacific (PA), and the smaller Caroline (CR) plate. Earthquake slip vector data along the Philippine Sea plate are inverted, subject to the constraint that EU-PA motion equals that predicted by the global relative plate model NUVEL-1. The resulting solution fails to satisfy geological constraints along the Caroline-Pacific boundary: convergence along the Mussau Trench and divergence along the Sorol Trough. We then seek solutions satisfying both the CR-PA boundary conditions and the Philippine Sea slip vector data, by adjusting the PA-PH and EU-PH best fitting poles within their error ellipses. We also consider northern Honshu to be part of the North American plate and impose the constraint that the Philippine Sea plate subducts beneath northern Honshu along the Sagmi Trough in a NNW-NW direction. Of the solutions satisfying these conditions, we select the best EU-PH as 48.2 deg N, 157.0 deg E, 1.09 deg/my, corresponding to a pole far from Japan and south of Kamchatka, and PA-PH, 1.2 deg N, 134.2 deg E, 1.00 deg/my. Predicted NA-PH and EU-PH convergence rates in central Honshu are consistent with estimated seismic slip rates. Previous estimates of the EU-PH pole close to central Honshu are inconsistent with extension within the Bonin backarc implied by earthquake slip vectors and NNW-NW convergence of the Bonin forearc at the Sagami Trough.

  16. Seismicity of the Earth 1900-2012 Philippine Sea plate and vicinity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Smoczyk, Gregory M.; Hayes, Gavin P.; Hamburger, Michael W.; Benz, Harley M.; Villaseñor, Antonio; Furlong, Kevin P.

    2013-01-01

    The complex tectonics surrounding the Philippine Islands are dominated by the interactions of the Pacific, Sunda, and Eurasia plates with the Philippine Sea plate (PSP). The latter is unique because it is almost exclusively surrounded by zones of plate convergence. At its eastern and southeastern edges, the Pacific plate is subducted beneath the PSP at the Izu-Bonin, Mariana, and Yap trenches. Here, the subduction zone exhibits high rates of seismic activity to depths of over 600 km, though no great earthquakes (M>8.0) have been observed, likely because of weak coupling along the plate interface. In the northeast, the PSP subducts beneath Japan and the eastern margin of the Eurasia plate at the Nankai and Ryukyu trenches, extending westward to Taiwan. The Nankai portion of this subduction zone has hosted some of the largest earthquakes along the margins of the PSP, including a pair of Mw8.1 megathrust events in 1944 and 1946. Along its western margin, the convergence of the PSP and the Sunda plate is responsible for a broad and active plate boundary system extending along both sides of the Philippine Islands chain. The region is characterized by opposite-facing subduction systems on the east and west sides of the islands, and the archipelago is cut by a major transform structure: the Philippine Fault. Subduction of the Philippine Sea plate occurs at the eastern margin of the islands along the Philippine Trench and its northern extension, the East Luzon Trough. On the west side of Luzon, the Sunda Plate subducts eastward along a series of trenches, including the Manila Trench in the north, the smaller Negros Trench in the central Philippines, and the Sulu and Cotabato trenches in the south. Twentieth and early twentyfirst century seismic activity along the boundaries of the Philippine Sea plate has produced seven great (M>8.0) earthquakes and 250 large (M>7) events. Among the most destructive events were the 1923 Kanto, the 1948 Fukui, and the 1995 Kobe, Japan

  17. Pliocene eclogite exhumation at plate tectonic rates in eastern Papua New Guinea.

    PubMed

    Baldwin, Suzanne L; Monteleone, Brian D; Webb, Laura E; Fitzgerald, Paul G; Grove, Marty; Hill, E June

    2004-09-16

    As lithospheric plates are subducted, rocks are metamorphosed under high-pressure and ultrahigh-pressure conditions to produce eclogites and eclogite facies metamorphic rocks. Because chemical equilibrium is rarely fully achieved, eclogites may preserve in their distinctive mineral assemblages and textures a record of the pressures, temperatures and deformation the rock was subjected to during subduction and subsequent exhumation. Radioactive parent-daughter isotopic variations within minerals reveal the timing of these events. Here we present in situ zircon U/Pb ion microprobe data that dates the timing of eclogite facies metamorphism in eastern Papua New Guinea at 4.3 +/- 0.4 Myr ago, making this the youngest documented eclogite exposed at the Earth's surface. Eclogite exhumation from depths of approximately 75 km was extremely rapid and occurred at plate tectonic rates (cm yr(-1)). The eclogite was exhumed within a portion of the obliquely convergent Australian-Pacific plate boundary zone, in an extending region located west of the Woodlark basin sea floor spreading centre. Such rapid exhumation (> 1 cm yr(-1)) of high-pressure and, we infer, ultrahigh-pressure rocks is facilitated by extension within transient plate boundary zones associated with rapid oblique plate convergence.

  18. Slab dragging and the recent geodynamic evolution of the western Mediterranean plate boundary region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spakman, Wim; Chertova, Maria V.; van den Berg, Arie P.; Thieulot, Cedric; van Hinsbergen, Douwe J. J.

    2016-04-01

    The Tortonian-Present geodynamic evolution of the plate boundary between North Africa and Iberia is characterized by first-order enigmas. This concerns, e.g., the diffuse tectonic activity of the plate boundary; the crustal thickening below the Rif; the closing of the northern Moroccan marine gateways prior to the Messinian Salinity Crisis; crustal extension of the central to eastern Betics; the origin and sense of motion of the large left-lateral Trans Alboran Shear Zone (TASZ) and Eastern Betic Shear Zone (EBSZ); and lithosphere delamination of the North African continental edge. Many explanations have been given for each of these seemingly disparate tectonic features, which invariably have been addressed in the plate tectonic context of the NW-SE relative plate convergence between the major plates since the Tortonian, mostly independently from each other. Usually there is no clear role for the subducted slab underlying the region, except for presumed rollback, either to SW or to the W, depending on the type of observations that require explanation. Here we integrate the dynamic role of the slab with the NW-SE relative plate convergence by 3-D numerical modelling of the slab evolution constrained by absolute plate motions (Chertova et al., JGR,2014 & Gcubed 2014). By combining observations and predictions from seismology, geology, and geodesy, with our numerical 3-D slab-mantle dynamics modelling, we developed a new and promising geodynamic framework that provides explanations of all noted tectonic enigmas in a coherent and connected way. From the Tortonian until today, we propose that mantle-resisted slab dragging combines with the NW-SE plate convergence across the (largely) unbroken plate boundary to drive the crustal deformation of the region. Slab dragging is the lateral transport, pushing or pulling, of slab through the mantle by the absolute motion of the subducting plate (Chertova et al., Gcubed, 2014). Because the slab is connected to both the Iberian

  19. Low Ozone in the Marine Boundary Layer of the Tropical Pacific Ocean

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Singh, Hanwant B.; Gregory, G. L.; Andesrson, B.; Browell, E.; Sachse, G. W.; Davis, D. D.; Crawford, J.; Bradshaw, J. D.; Talbot, R.; Blake, D. R.; hide

    1994-01-01

    Aircraft measurements of ozone, its key precursors, and a variety of chemical tracers were made in the troposphere of the western and central Pacific in October 1991. These data are presented and analyzed to examine the occurrence of low ozone concentrations in the remote marine boundary layer of the tropical and equatorial Pacific Ocean. The data from these flights out of Guam, covering an area extending from the equator to 20 N and from south of the Philippines to Hawaii, show average O3 concentrations as low as 8-9 ppb (ppb=10(exp-9)v/v) at altitudes of 0.3-0.5 km in the boundary layer. Individual measurements as low as 2-5 ppb were recorded. Low O3 concentrations do not always persist in space and time. High O3, generally associated with the transport of upper tropospheric air, was also encountered in the boundary layer. In practically all cases, O3 increased to values as large as 25-30 ppb within 2 km above the boundary layer top. Steady state model computations are used to suggest that these low O3 concentrations are a result of net photochemical O3 destruction in a low NO environment, sea-surface deposition, and extremely low net entrainment rates (1-2 mm per second) from the free troposphere. Day/night measurements of ethane, propane, gaseous and aerosol Cl suggest that daytime (morning) Cl atom concentrations in the vicinity of 10(exp 5) molecules per cubic centimeter may be present in the marine boundary layer. This Cl atom abundance can be rationalized only if sea salt aerosols can release free chlorine (Cl2) to the gas phase in the presence of sun light (and possibly O3). These Cl atom concentrations, however, are still insufficient and Cl (or Br) chemistry is not likely to be an important cause of the observed low O3.

  20. Paleomagnetic Tests of Global Plate Reconstructions with Fixed and Moving Hotspots

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andrews, D. L.; Gordon, R. G.; Horner-Johnson, B. C.

    2004-12-01

    Three distinct approaches have been used in prior work to estimate the motion of the Pacific basin plates relative to the surrounding continents. The first approach is to use the global plate motion circuit through Antarctica (e.g., the Pacific plate to the Antarctic plate to the African plate to the North American plate). An update to this approach is to incorporate the modest mid-Tertiary motion between East and West Antarctica estimated by Cande et al. (2000). A recently proposed second approach is to take an alternative circuit for the early Tertiary of the Pacific plate to the Australian plate to the East Antarctic plate to the African plate to the North American plate (Steinberger et al. 2004). The third approach is to assume that the hotspots in the Pacific Ocean are fixed relative to those in the Atlantic and Indian Oceans (e.g., Engebretson et al., 1986), which we recently showed indicates motion between East and West Antarctica of 800 ± 500 km near the Ross Sea Embayment. The first approach (global plate motion circuit through Antarctica) indicates very rapid motion between Pacific and Indo-Atlantic hotspots during the early Tertiary (e.g., Raymond et al. 2000). The second approach (global plate motion circuit through Australia) indicates slower, but still substantial, motion between Pacific and Indo-Atlantic hotspots (Steinberger et al. 2004). Because each of the three approaches predicts distinctly different motion between the Pacific plate and the continental plates, they can be tested with paleomagnetic data. The results of such tests indicate that the first approach leads to systematic and significant misfits between Pacific and non-Pacific early Tertiary and Late Cretaceous paleomagnetic poles. The second approach leads to slightly smaller misfits. In contrast, the circuit based on fixed hotspots brings the Pacific and non-Pacific paleomagnetic poles into consistency. Thus the paleomagnetic data decisively favor fixed hotspots over the alternative

  1. Movies of Finite Deformation within Western North American Plate Boundary Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holt, W. E.; Birkes, B.; Richard, G. A.

    2004-12-01

    Animations of finite strain within deforming continental zones can be an important tool for both education and research. We present finite strain models for western North America. We have found that these moving images, which portray plate motions, landform uplift, and subsidence, are highly useful for enabling students to conceptualize the dramatic changes that can occur within plate boundary zones over geologic time. These models use instantaneous rates of strain inferred from both space geodetic observations and Quaternary fault slip rates. Geodetic velocities and Quaternary strain rates are interpolated to define a continuous, instantaneous velocity field for western North America. This velocity field is then used to track topography points and fault locations through time (both backward and forward in time), using small time steps, to produce a 6 million year image. The strain rate solution is updated at each time step, accounting for changes in boundary conditions of plate motion, and changes in fault orientation. Assuming zero volume change, Airy isostasy, and a ratio of erosion rate to tectonic uplift rate, the topography is also calculated as a function of time. The animations provide interesting moving images of the transform boundary, highlighting ongoing extension and subsidence, convergence and uplift, and large translations taking place within the strike-slip regime. Moving images of the strain components, uplift volume through time, and inferred erosion volume through time, have also been produced. These animations are an excellent demonstration for education purposes and also hold potential as an important tool for research enabling the quantification of finite rotations of fault blocks, potential erosion volume, uplift volume, and the influence of climate on these parameters. The models, however, point to numerous shortcomings of taking constraints from instantaneous calculations to provide insight into time evolution and reconstruction models

  2. Plate Boundary Observatory Strainmeter Recordings of The M6.0 August 24, 2014 South Napa Earthquake

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hodgkinson, Kathleen; Mencin, David; Phillips, David; Mattioli, Glen; Meertens, Charles

    2015-04-01

    The 2014 Mw6.0 South Napa earthquake nucleated at 11 km depth near the West Napa fault, one of a complex system of sub-parallel major right lateral faults north of San Francisco that together accommodate much of the relative motion between the Pacific and North American tectonic plates. The South Napa event was the largest to have shaken the San Francisco Bay Area (SFBA) in almost 25 years. A major goal of the NSF-funded EarthScope Plate Boundary Observatory (PBO), installed and maintained by UNAVCO, was to enable researchers to study the interaction between the faults that form a plate boundary zone, and in particular, to investigate the role that aseismic transients contribute to strain accumulation and release. To realize this goal, PBO includes borehole tensor strainmeters (BSMs) installed in several targeted regions, including on to the north and east of San Francisco. Two PBO BSMs have been operating in the SFBA since 2008: B057, north of San Francisco and 30 km from the epicenter, and B054, 3 km from the Hayward Fault and 40 km from the epicenter. We find the coseismic strains recorded by B057 are close to those predicted using elastic half-space dislocation theory and the seismically determined focal mechanism, while a more complicated variable slip model may be required for observations from B054. Months after the event, B057 continued to record a significant postseismic signal. In this presentation we document the coseismic signals recorded by the PBO BSMs and characterize the temporal behavior of the postseismic signal at B057. The PBO network includes over 1100 GPS, 75 BSMs, 79 seismometers and arrays of tiltmeters, pore pressure sensors and meteorological instrumentation. UNAVCO generates an Earthscope Level 2 processed strain time-series combined into areal and shear strains for the PBO BSM network; the raw data are available from the IRIS DMC in mSEED format. For events of interest, such as the South Napa earthquake, UNAVCO generates a 1-sps

  3. Tectono-magmatic relationships along an obliquely convergent plate boundary: Sumatra, Indonesia.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Acocella, Valerio; Bellier, Olivier

    2017-04-01

    The tectono-magmatic relationships along divergent and orthogonally convergent plate boundaries have been defined in several aspects. However, much less is known along obliquely convergent plate boundaries, where the strain partitioning promotes strike-slip structures along the volcanic arc. Here it is unclear if and, in case, how strike-slip structures may control arc volcanism, in terms of processes, distribution and size. To better define these features, we review the available tectonic, structural and volcanological data on Sumatra (Indonesia), which provides the ideal case study. The Sumatra volcanic arc consists of 48 major active volcanoes. Of these, 46% lie within 10 km from the dextral Great Sumatra Fault (GSF), which carries most of the strike-slip displacement on the overriding plate, whereas 27% of the volcanoes lie at >20 km from the GSF. Considering the volcanoes lying within 10 km from GSF, 76% show some possible structural relation to the GSF, whereas only 28% (7 volcanoes) show a clear structural relation to the GSF, being located in pull-apart or releasing bends between dextral segments. However, these localized areas of extension do not seem to promote the development of magmatic segments, similarly to orthogonally convergent plate boundaries. Many volcanoes lie to the west of the GSF, largely following the shallower portions of the slab, which reaches its average partial melting depth (130±30 km) more westward. There is a preferred volcano alignment and elongation along the N30-N40°E trend, almost parallel to the convergence vector; this trend coincides with the direction of the extensional structures found along the arc. Other volcanoes are elongated parallel to the GSF, possibly resulting from the co- and post-seismic across-arc extension, as observed during the 2004 mega-earthquake. Finally, there is no relationship between the slip rate along GSF and the erupted volumes along the arc: the highest productivity of Toba caldera may be

  4. Oblique collision and accretion of the Netherlands Leeward Antilles island arc: A structural analysis of the Caribbean-South American plate boundary zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beardsley, Amanda Gail

    2007-12-01

    The Netherlands Leeward Antilles volcanic island arc is an ideal natural laboratory to study the evolution of the Caribbean-South American plate boundary. The Leeward Antilles islands (Aruba, Curacao, and Bonaire) are located offshore western Venezuela, within the obliquely convergent diffuse plate boundary zone. Outcrop analysis, microthermometry, and 2D marine seismic reflection data provide evidence of three generations of regional deformation since the Late Cretaceous. Outcrop analysis of structural features, including faults, joints, and veins, characterizes the kinematic history of the islands. Fluid inclusion analysis of quartz and calcite veins coupled with apatite fission-track dating provides the island exhumation history. Finally, marine reflection seismic data processing and interpretation of newly acquired data elucidates offshore structures to integrate with our onshore results. The oldest regional deformation, resulting in both ductile (D1) and brittle (F 1) structures, is attributed to displacement partitioning along the arcuate Caribbean plate boundary. Associated crustal thinning initiated island exhumation, at a rate of 0.18 km/my, from a maximum burial depth of 6 km in the Late Cretaceous (˜89 Ma). Coeval with D1/F1 deformation and exhumation, stretching of the island arc resulted in extensive basin rifting that separated the island blocks. At ˜55 Ma, a change in the relative motion of the Caribbean plate altered plate boundary dynamics. Displacement along the right-lateral Caribbean transform fault and Oca - San Sebastian - El Pilar strike-slip fault system created a wrench tectonic regime within the diffuse plate boundary zone. A second generation of brittle structures (F2) developed while the islands were at a maximum burial depth of 2 km during the Paleocene/Eocene. Since ˜45 Ma, continued motion along the strike-slip fault systems and oblique plate convergence resulted in the youngest generation of structural features (F3). Regional

  5. Plate Motion and Crustal Deformation Estimated with Geodetic Data from the Global Positioning System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Argus, Donald F.; Heflin, Michael B.

    1995-01-01

    We use geodetic data taken over four years with the Global Positioning System (GPS) to estimate: (1) motion between six major plates and (2) motion relative to these plates of ten sites in plate boundary zones. The degree of consistency between geodetic velocities and rigid plates requires the (one-dimensional) standard errors in horizontal velocities to be approx. 2 mm/yr. Each of the 15 angular velocities describing motion between plate pairs that we estimate with GPS differs insignificantly from the corresponding angular velocity in global plate motion model NUVEL-1A, which averages motion over the past 3 m.y. The motion of the Pacific plate relative to both the Eurasian and North American plates is observed to be faster than predicted by NUVEL-1A, supporting the inference from Very Long B ase- line Interferometry (VLBI) that motion of the Pacific plate has speed up over the past few m.y. The Eurasia-North America pole of rotation is estimated to be north of NUVEL-1A, consistent with the independent hypothesis that the pole has recently migrated northward across northeast Asia to near the Lena River delta. Victoria, which lies above the main thrust at the Cascadia subduction zone, moves relative to the interior of the overriding plate at 30% of the velocity of the subducting plate, reinforcing the conclusion that the thrust there is locked beneath the continental shelf and slope.

  6. Plate tectonics of the northern part of the Pacific Ocean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Verzhbitsky, E. V.; Kononov, M. V.; Kotelkin, V. D.

    2007-10-01

    Geophysical data on the northern part of the Pacific Ocean were systematized to compile a map of geomagnetic and geothermal studies of the Bering Sea. The absence of reliable data about the formation time of the Bering Sea structures of oceanic and continental origins is noted; this hampered the assessment of the geodynamical processes in the North Pacific. Based on the geophysical data, we estimated the age of the structures of the Bering Sea floor such as the Commander Basin (21 My), the Shirshov Ridge (95 and 33 My in the northern and southern parts, respectively), the Aleutian Basin (70 My), the Vitus Arch (44 My), the Bowers Ridge (30 My), and the Bowers Basin (40 My). These values are confirmed by the geological, geophysical, and kinematic data. A numerical modeling of the formation of extensive regional structures (Emperor Fracture Zone, Chinook Trough, and others) in the Northern Pacific is carried out. A conclusion was made on the basis of the geological and geothermal analysis that the northern and southern parts of the Shirshov Ridge have different geological ages and different tectonic structures. The northern part of the ridge is characterized by an upthrust-nappe terrain origin, while the southern part has originated from a torn-away island arc similar to the origin of the Bowers Ridge. The sea floor of the Aleutian Basin represents a detached part of the Upper Cretaceous Kula plate, on which spreading processes took place in the Vitus Arch area in the Eocene. The final activity phase in the Bering Sea began 21 My B.P. by spreading of the ancient oceanic floor of the Commander Basin. Based on the age estimations of the structures of the Bering Sea floor, the results of the modeling of the process of formation of regional fracture zones and of the geomagnetic, geothermal, tectonic, geological, and structural data, we calculated and compiled a kinematic model (with respect to a hot spot reference system) of the northern part of the Pacific Ocean for 21

  7. Counter-Rotating Magellan and Trinidad Microplates at the Mesozoic Pacific-Phoenix-Farallon Triple Junction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schouten, H.; Smith, D. K.

    2005-12-01

    Magellan and Trinidad microplates developed at the Mesozoic triple junction between the Pacific, Phoenix and Farallon plates; the microplates were instrumental in the transition from a transform-ridge-transform to a ridge-ridge-ridge triple junction, which took several tens of millions of years. Contrasting qualitative models for the evolution of these microplates [e.g., Tamaki and Larson, 1988; Nakanishi et al., 1992] provide meager insight in the mechanics of microplate evolution and triple junction transformation. We propose a quantitative model for the evolution of Magellan and Trinidad microplates based on the edge-driven microplate kinematic principles [Schouten et al., 1993] that have provided successful quantitative solutions for the motions of Easter, Juan Fernandez, and Galapagos microplates. In these edge-driven solutions, two angular velocity vectors (describing motion between microplate and driving plates) are located on the microplate boundaries at the tip of rifts that propagate between microplate and driving plates. The rift propagation leaves pseudofaults on microplate and driving plates; the pseudofaults, which can be recognized in the seafloor topography, then become proxies for the trajectories of the angular velocity vectors from which a quantitative solution of microplate motion is derived. Using the estimated seafloor topography of the region and published marine magnetic anomaly lineations we propose the following scenario. The Magellan microplate rotated counterclockwise as evidenced by the fanning of magnetic lineations about the Magellan Trough and the rotation of the older Mid-Pac Mountains lineation set. The Trinidad microplate rotated clockwise relative to the Pacific plate to judge from the wedge-shaped region about the Trinidad trough that has its narrow tip on the Victoria fracture zone (recognized in the estimated seafloor topograpy). The clockwise motion of the Trinidad microplate was driven by Pacific-Phoenix motion; the

  8. Paleomagnetism of Midway Atoll lavas and northward movement of the Pacific plate

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gromme, S.; Vine, F.J.

    1972-01-01

    Two deep drill holes through the reef limestones of Midway Atoll penetrated 120 m and 19 m of basaltic lavas that were dated by the KAr method at 18 my. Inclinations of natural remanent magnetization have been measured in 173 specimens cut from 57 core samples from 13 of the lava flows. The mean paleomagnetic inclination is 27.6?? ?? 6.8??, corresponding to a paleolatitude of 14.7?? ?? 4.2??. The present latitude of Midway is 28??, suggesting a northward component of motion of the Pacific plate of approximately 13?? or 1400 km in the last 18 my. The paleolatitude of Midway is thus not significantly different from the present latitude (19??) of the active volcanic island of Hawaii. The paleomagnetic data from the Midway basalts thus support the hypothesis of Wilson and Morgan that volcanic heat sources are fixed with respect to the Earth's mantle below the asthenosphere and their apparent migration with time is due to plate motion. ?? 1972.

  9. Circum-Pacific seismic potential: 1989-1999

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nishenko, S.P.

    1991-01-01

    The seismic potential for 96 segments of simple plate boundaries around the circum-Pacific region is presented in terms of the conditional probability for the occurrence of either large or great interplate earthquakes during the next 5, 10, and 20 years (i.e., 1989-1994, 1989-1999 and 1989-2009). This study represents the first probabilistic summary of seismic potential on this scale, and involves the comparison of plate boundary segments that exhibit varying recurrence times, magnitudes, and tectonic regimes. Presenting these data in a probabilistic framework provides a basis for the uniform comparison of seismic hazard between these differing fault segments, as well as accounting for individual variations in recurrence time along a specific fault segment, and uncertainties in the determination of the average recurrence time. The definition of specific segments along simple plate boundaries relies on the mapping of earthquake rupture zones as defined by the aftershock distributions of prior large and great earthquakes, and historic descriptions of felt intensities and damage areas. The 96 segments are chosen to represent areas likely to be ruptured by "characteristic" earthquakes of a specified size or magnitude. The term characteristic implies repeated breakage of a plate boundary segment by large or great earthquakes whose source dimensions are similar from cycle to cycle. This definition does not exclude the possibility that occasionally adjacent characteristic earthquake segments may break together in a single, larger event. Conversely, a segment may also break in a series of smaller ruptures. Estimates of recurrence times and conditional probabilities for characteristic earthquakes along segments of simple plate boundaries are based on 1) the historic and instrumental record of large and great earthquake occurrence; 2) paleoseismic evidence of recurrence from radiometric dating of Holocene features produced by earthquakes; 3) direct calculations of recurrence

  10. Earthquake recurrence and risk assessment in circum-Pacific seismic gaps

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Thatcher, W.

    1989-01-01

    THE development of the concept of seismic gaps, regions of low earthquake activity where large events are expected, has been one of the notable achievements of seismology and plate tectonics. Its application to long-term earthquake hazard assessment continues to be an active field of seismological research. Here I have surveyed well documented case histories of repeated rupture of the same segment of circum-Pacific plate boundary and characterized their general features. I find that variability in fault slip and spatial extent of great earthquakes rupturing the same plate boundary segment is typical rather than exceptional but sequences of major events fill identified seismic gaps with remarkable order. Earthquakes are concentrated late in the seismic cycle and occur with increasing size and magnitude. Furthermore, earthquake rup-ture starts near zones of concentrated moment release, suggesting that high-slip regions control the timing of recurrent events. The absence of major earthquakes early in the seismic cycle indicates a more complex behaviour for lower-slip regions, which may explain the observed cycle-to-cycle diversity of gap-filling sequences. ?? 1989 Nature Publishing Group.

  11. Lateral variations in upper-mantle seismic anisotropy in the Pacific from inversion of a surface-wave dispersion dataset

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eddy, C. L.; Ekstrom, G.; Nettles, M.; Gaherty, J. B.

    2017-12-01

    We present a three-dimensional model of the anisotropic velocity structure of the Pacific lithosphere and asthenosphere. The presence of seismic anisotropy in the oceanic upper mantle provides information about the geometry of flow in the mantle, the nature of the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary, and the possible presence of partial melt in the asthenosphere. Our dataset consists of fundamental-mode dispersion for Rayleigh and Love waves measured between 25-250 s with paths crossing the Pacific Ocean. We invert the phase anomaly measurements directly for three-dimensional anisotropic velocity structure. Our models are radially anisotropic and include the full set of elastic parameters that describe azimuthal variations in velocity (e.g. Gc, Gs). We investigate the age dependence of seismic velocity and radial anisotropy and find that there are significant deviations from the velocities predicted by a simple oceanic plate cooling model. We observe strong radial anisotropy with vsh > vsv in the asthenosphere of the central Pacific. We investigate the radial anisotropy in the shallow lithosphere, where previous models have reported conflicting results. There is a contrast in both upper-mantle isotropic velocities and radial anisotropy between the Pacific and Nazca plates, across the East Pacific Rise. We also investigate lateral variations in azimuthal anisotropy throughout the Pacific upper mantle and find that there are large areas over which the anisotropy fast axis does not align with absolute plate motion, suggesting the presence of small-scale convection or pressure-driven flow beneath the base of the oceanic plate.

  12. Segmentation and disruption of the East Pacific Rise in the mouth of the Gulf of California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lonsdale, Peter

    1995-08-01

    Analysis of new multibeam bathymetry and all available magnetic data shows that the 340 km-long crest of the East Pacific Rise between Rivera and Tamayo transforms contains segments of both the Pacific-Rivera and the Pacific-North America plate boundaries. Another Pacific-North America spreading segment (“Alarcon Rise”) extends 60 km further north to the Mexican continental margin. The Pacific-North America-Rivera triple junction is now of the RRR type, located on the risecrest 60 km south of Tamayo transform. Slow North America-Rivera rifting has ruptured the young lithosphere accreted to the east flank of the rise, and extends across the adjacent turbidite plain to the vicinity of the North America-Rivera Euler pole, which is located on the plate boundary. The present absolute motion of the Rivera microplate is an anticlockwise spin at 4° m.y.-1 around a pole located near its southeast corner; its motion has recently changed as the driving forces applied to its margins have changed, especially with the evolution of the southern margin from a broad shear zone between Rivera and Mathematician microplates to a long Pacific-Rivera transform. Pleistocene rotations in spreading direction, by as much as 15° on the Pacific-Rivera boundary, have segmented the East Pacific Rise into a staircase of en echelon spreading axes, which overlap at lengthening and migrating nontransform offsets. The spreading segments vary greatly in risecrest geomorphology, including the full range of structural types found on other rises with intermediate spreading rates: axial rift valleys, split shield volcanoes, and axial ridges. Most offsets between the segments have migrated southward, but within the past 1 m.y. the largest of them (with 14 27 km of lateral displacement) have shown “dueling” behavior, with short-lived reversals in migration direction. Migration involves propagation of a spreading axis into abyssal hill terrain, which is deformed and uplifted while it occupies the

  13. An analytical study of the free and forced vibration response of a ribbed plate with free boundary conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Tian Ran; Zhang, Kai

    2018-05-01

    An analytical study to predict the vibration response of a ribbed plate with free boundary conditions is presented. The analytical solution was derived using a double cosine integral transform technique and then utilized to study the free and forced vibration of the ribbed plate, as well as the effect of the rib on the modal response of the uniform plate. It is shown that in addition to the three zero-frequency rigid body modes of the plate, the vibration modes of the uniform plate can be classified into four mode groups according to the symmetric properties of the plate with respect to the two orthogonal middle lines parallel to the plate edges. The four mode groups correspond to a double symmetric group, a double anti-symmetric group and two symmetric/anti-symmetric groups. Whilst the inclusion of the rib to the plate is shown to cause distortion to the distribution of vibration modes, most modes can still be traced back to the original modes of the uniform plate. Both the mass and stiffness of the rib are shown to affect the modal vibration of the uniform plate, whereby a dominant effect from the rib mass leads to a decrease in the modal frequency of the plate, whereas a dominant effect from the rib stiffness leads to an increase in plate modal frequency. When the stiffened rib behaves as an effective boundary to the plate vibration, an original plate mode becomes a pair of degenerate modes, whereby one mode has a higher frequency and the other mode has a lower frequency than that of the original mode.

  14. Paleomagnetic Quantification of Neogene Block Rotations within an Active Transtensional Plate Boundary, Baja California, Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weber, J.; Umhoefer, P. J.; Pérez Venzor, J. A.; Bachtadse, V.

    2009-12-01

    Compared to oceanic plate boundaries which are generally narrow zones of deformation, continental plate boundaries appear as widespread areas with complex and poorly understood kinematics. Motion of crustal blocks within these “diffuse plate boundaries” causes rather small-scale lithospheric deformation within the boundary zone, while the main plates behave more rigid. Complex deformation patterns of interacting terranes separated by a variety of active faults are the consequence. To study the dynamic implications of boundary zone deformation, the southern part of the Baja California peninsula, Mexico (Baja) has been chosen as target for a detailed paleomagnetic study. In combination with geodetic measurements it is tried to characterize rigid block rotations and temporal changes in rotation rates. Up to now, little paleomagnetic work directed toward vertical axis rotations has been done in Baja California, despite its location in a major active transtensional zone. To address this problem, a total of 501 cores from 63 sites in the southern part of Baja - including sites on San José Island, San Francisco Island and Cerralvo Island - has been taken from volcanic and sedimentary rocks covering the last 25 million years in time. The analysis of paleomagnetic declinations and comparison to coeval data from North America and stable areas of Baja California allow evaluating the long-term kinematics of the region and the effects of oblique-rifting in the Gulf of California to the east. Nearly all sampled sites indicate vertical axis rotation up to 30-40 degrees with an average of about 20-25 degrees. Depending on the location these rotations have been either clockwise or counter-clockwise and are correlated with the opening of the Gulf of California and the translation of the Baja California peninsula to the North. Results of the paleomagnetic investigation are compared to geodetic data of the last few years in order to address the problem how strain is partitioned

  15. Experimental Results from a Flat Plate, Turbulent Boundary Layer Modified for the Purpose of Drag Reduction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elbing, Brian R.

    2006-11-01

    Recent experiments on a flat plate, turbulent boundary layer at high Reynolds numbers (>10^7) were performed to investigate various methods of reducing skin friction drag. The methods used involved injecting either air or a polymer solution into the boundary layer through a slot injector. Two slot injectors were mounted on the model with one located 1.4 meters downstream of the nose and the second located 3.75 meters downstream. This allowed for some synergetic experiments to be performed by varying the injections from each slot and comparing the skin friction along the plate. Skin friction measurements were made with 6 shear stress sensors flush mounted along the stream-wise direction of the model.

  16. A seismic gap along an accreting plate boundary : Example of the Djibouti Ridge, Afar, East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruegg, Jean-Claude; Lépine, Jean-Claude

    1983-05-01

    A segment of the Gulf of Tadjoura (Djibouti, East-Africa) accreting plate boundary, shows a period of quiescence in the seismic activity since 1974. This segment corresponds to the extension area of the aftershock activity that has occured after a cluster of magnitude 5.5 earthquakes in April 1973. From this example we propose that the seismic gap concept can be extended to moderate earthquakes occuring at extensional plate boundaries. The magnitude of the largest earthquakes at the spreading axis is limited by the size of the rupture length and by the strength of the brittle lithosphere. In the case of the Djibouti ridge recurrence time of 10-20 years are found for earthquakes of about M =6.

  17. Structure and composition of the plate-boundary slip zone for the 2011 Tohoku-Oki earthquake.

    PubMed

    Chester, Frederick M; Rowe, Christie; Ujiie, Kohtaro; Kirkpatrick, James; Regalla, Christine; Remitti, Francesca; Moore, J Casey; Toy, Virginia; Wolfson-Schwehr, Monica; Bose, Santanu; Kameda, Jun; Mori, James J; Brodsky, Emily E; Eguchi, Nobuhisa; Toczko, Sean

    2013-12-06

    The mechanics of great subduction earthquakes are influenced by the frictional properties, structure, and composition of the plate-boundary fault. We present observations of the structure and composition of the shallow source fault of the 2011 Tohoku-Oki earthquake and tsunami from boreholes drilled by the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program Expedition 343 and 343T. Logging-while-drilling and core-sample observations show a single major plate-boundary fault accommodated the large slip of the Tohoku-Oki earthquake rupture, as well as nearly all the cumulative interplate motion at the drill site. The localization of deformation onto a limited thickness (less than 5 meters) of pelagic clay is the defining characteristic of the shallow earthquake fault, suggesting that the pelagic clay may be a regionally important control on tsunamigenic earthquakes.

  18. Plate Motions, Regional Deformation, and Time-Variation of Plate Motions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gordon, R. G.

    1998-01-01

    The significant results obtained with support of this grant include the following: (1) Using VLBI data in combination with other geodetical, geophysical, and geological data to bound the present rotation of the Colorado Plateau, and to evaluate to its implications for the kinematics and seismogenic potential of the western half of the conterminous U.S. (2) Determining realistic estimates of uncertainties for VLBI data and then applying the data and uncertainties to obtain an upper bound on the integral of deformation within the "stable interior" of the North American and other plates and thus to place an upper bound on the seismogenic potential within these regions. (3) Combining VLBI data with other geodetic, geophysical, and geologic data to estimate the motion of coastal California in a frame of reference attached to the Sierra Nevada-Great Valley microplate. This analysis has provided new insights into the kinematic boundary conditions that may control or at least strongly influence the locations of asperities that rupture in great earthquakes along the San Andreas transform system. (4) Determining a global tectonic model from VLBI geodetic data that combines the estimation of plate angular velocities with individual site linear velocities where tectonically appropriate. and (5) Investigation of the some of the outstanding problems defined by the work leading to global plate motion model NUVEL-1. These problems, such as the motion between the Pacific and North American plates and between west Africa and east Africa, are focused on regions where the seismogenic potential may be greater than implied by published plate tectonic models.

  19. Unsteady heat-flux measurements of second-mode instability waves in a hypersonic flat-plate boundary layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kegerise, Michael A.; Rufer, Shann J.

    2016-08-01

    In this paper, we report on the application of the atomic layer thermopile (ALTP) heat-flux sensor to the measurement of laminar-to-turbulent transition in a hypersonic flat-plate boundary layer. The centerline of the flat-plate model was instrumented with a streamwise array of ALTP sensors, and the flat-plate model was exposed to a Mach 6 freestream over a range of unit Reynolds numbers. Here, we observed an unstable band of frequencies that are associated with second-mode instability waves in the laminar boundary layer that forms on the flat-plate surface. The measured frequencies, group velocities, phase speeds, and wavelengths of these instability waves are consistent with data previously reported in the literature. Heat flux time series, and the Morlet wavelet transforms of them, revealed the wave-packet nature of the second-mode instability waves. In addition, a laser-based radiative heating system was used to measure the frequency response functions (FRF) of the ALTP sensors used in the wind tunnel test. These measurements were used to assess the stability of the sensor FRFs over time and to correct spectral estimates for any attenuation caused by the finite sensor bandwidth.

  20. Divergent plate boundaries and crustal spreading on Venus: Evidence from Aphrodite Terra

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Crumpler, L. S.; Head, James W.

    1989-01-01

    The modes of lithospheric heat transfer and the tectonic styles may differ between Earth and Venus, depending on how the high surface temperature (700 K = 430 C), dense and opaque atmosphere (approx. 10 MPa = 100 bars), lack of water oceans, and the other known ways in which Venus differs from Earth, influence basic lithospheric processes, thermal gradient, upper mantle temperature, thermal and chemical evolution, and convection. A fundamental question is whether the lithosphere of Venus is horizontally stable, like the other terrestrial planets, or is mobile like that on Earth. The variety of characteristics, their integrated relationships, and their predictable behavior throughout Western Aphrodite Terra are similar to those features known to occur in association with the terrestrial seafloor at spreading centers and divergent plate boundaries. It is concluded that Western Aphrodite Terra represents the site of crustal spreading centers and divergent plate boundaries. The extent of similar characteristics and processes elsewhere on Venus outside of the 13,000 km long Western and Eastern Aphrodite Terra rise is unknown at the present, but their presence in other areas of the equatorial highlands, suggested from recent analysis, may be tested with forthcoming Magellan data.

  1. Geometry and spatial variations of seismic reflection intensity of the upper surface of the Philippine Sea plate off the Boso Peninsula, Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kono, Akihiro; Sato, Toshinori; Shinohara, Masanao; Mochizuki, Kimihiro; Yamada, Tomoaki; Uehira, Kenji; Shinbo, Takashi; Machida, Yuya; Hino, Ryota; Azuma, Ryousuke

    2017-07-01

    In the region off the Boso Peninsula, Japan, the Pacific plate is subducting westward beneath both the Honshu island arc and Philippine Sea plate, while the Philippine Sea plate is subducting northwestward beneath the Honshu island arc. These complex tectonic interactions have caused numerous seismic events occurred in the past. To better understand these seismic events, it is important to determine the geometry of the plate boundary, in particular the upper surface of the Philippine Sea plate. We conducted an active-source seismic refraction survey in July and August 2009 from which we obtained a 2-D P-wave velocity structure model along a 216-km profile. We used the velocity model and previously published data that indicate a P-wave velocity of 5.0 km/s for the upper surface of the subducting Philippine Sea plate to delineate its boundary with the overriding Honshu island arc. Our isodepth contours of the upper surface of the Philippine Sea plate show that its dip is shallow at depths of 10 to 15 km, far off the Boso Peninsula. This shallow dip may be a result of interference from the Pacific plate slab, which is subducting westward under the Philippine Sea plate. Within our survey data, we recognized numerous seismic reflections of variable intensity, some of which came from the upper surface of the Philippine Sea plate. An area of high seismic reflection intensity corresponds with the main slip area of the Boso slow slip events. Our modeling indicates that those reflections can be explained by an inhomogeneous layer close to the upper surface of the Philippine Sea plate.

  2. Influence of obliquely subducting slab on Pacific-North America shear motion inferred from seismic anisotropy along the Queen Charlotte margin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cao, L.; Kao, H.; Wang, K.; Wang, Z.

    2016-12-01

    Haida Gwaii is located along the transpressive Queen Charlotte margin between the Pacific (PA) and North America (NA) plates. The highly oblique relative plate motion is partitioned, with the strike-slip component accommodated by the Queen Charlotte Fault (QCF) and the convergent component by a thrust fault offshore. To understand how the presence of a obliquely subducting slab influences shear deformation of the plate boundary, we investigate mantle anisotropy by analyzing shear-wave splitting of teleseismic SKS phases recorded at 17 seismic stations in and around Haida Gwaii. We used the MFAST program to determine the polarization direction of the fast wave (φ) and the delay time (δt) between the fast and slow phases. The fast directions derived from stations on Haida Gwaii and two stations to the north on the Alaska Panhandle are predominantly margin-parallel (NNW). However, away from the plate boundary, the fast direction transitions to WSW-trending, very oblique or perpendicular to the plate boundary. Because the average delay time of 0.6-2.45 s is much larger than values based on an associated local S phase splitting analysis in the same study area, it is reasonable to infer that most of the anisotropy from our SKS analysis originates from the upper mantle and is associated with lattice-preferred orientation of anisotropic minerals. The margin-parallel fast direction within about 100 km of the QCF (average φ = -40º and δt = 1.2 s) is likely induced by the PA-NA shear motion. The roughly margin-normal fast directions farther away, although more scatterd, are consistent with that previously observed in the NA continent and are attributed to the absolute motion of the NA plate. However, the transition between the two regimes based on our SKS analysis appears to be gradual, suggesting that the plate boundary shear influences a much broader region at mantle depths than would be inferred from the surface trace of the QCF. We think this is due to the presence

  3. Plane wave diffraction by a finite plate with impedance boundary conditions.

    PubMed

    Nawaz, Rab; Ayub, Muhammad; Javaid, Akmal

    2014-01-01

    In this study we have examined a plane wave diffraction problem by a finite plate having different impedance boundaries. The Fourier transforms were used to reduce the governing problem into simultaneous Wiener-Hopf equations which are then solved using the standard Wiener-Hopf procedure. Afterwards the separated and interacted fields were developed asymptotically by using inverse Fourier transform and the modified stationary phase method. Detailed graphical analysis was also made for various physical parameters we were interested in.

  4. Gliders Measure Western Boundary Current Transport from the South Pacific to the Equator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davis, R. E.; Kessler, W. S.; Sherman, J. T.

    2011-12-01

    Since 2007, the Consortium on the Ocean's Role in Climate (CORC) has used repeated glider transects across the southern Solomon Sea to measure the previously nearly unsampled mass and heat transport from the South Pacific to the equatorial zone. Mean transport is dominated by the New Guinea Coastal Undercurrent (NGCUC). This low-latitude western boundary current is a major element of the shallow meridional overturning circulation, returning water from the subtropical South Pacific to the Equatorial Undercurrent (EUC) where it upwells. We find the mean NGCUC to be a jet less than 100 km wide, centered near 300 m depth, with equatorward velocities reaching 35 cm/s and salinity anomalies on isopycnals up to 0.05. Weaker poleward flow is found near the surface in the eastern basin. Equatorward transport above 700 m is typically 20 Sv, but nearly vanished during two La Niñas and reached 25 Sv during an El Niño. Within these events the seasonal cycle cannot yet be defined. Transport variability is strongest outside the boundary current and appears to consist of two independently moving layers with a boundary near 250 m. ENSO variability is predominantly in the upper layer. The relation of Solomon Sea mass and heat transport with ENSO indicators will be discussed The ability to initiate and maintain measurements that support such quantitative analyses with a small effort in a remote site far from research institutions demonstrates that gliders can be a productive part of the global ocean observing system.

  5. Plate boundary reorganization in the active Banda Arc-continent collision: Insights from new GPS measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nugroho, Hendro; Harris, Ron; Lestariya, Amin W.; Maruf, Bilal

    2009-12-01

    New GPS measurements reveal that large sections of the SE Asian Plate are progressively accreting to the edge of the Australian continent by distribution of strain away from the deformation front to forearc and backarc plate boundary segments. The study was designed to investigate relative motions across suspected plate boundary segments in the transition from subduction to collision. The oblique nature of the collision provides a way to quantify the spatial and temporal distribution of strain from the deformation front to the back arc. The 12 sites we measured from Bali to Timor included some from an earlier study and 7 additional stations, which extended the epoch of observation to ten years at many sites. The resulting GPS velocity field delineates at least three Sunda Arc-forearc regions around 500 km in strike-length that shows different amounts of coupling to the Australian Plate. Movement of these regions relative to SE Asia increases from 21% to 41% to 63% eastward toward the most advanced stages of collision. The regions are bounded by the deformation front to the south, the Flores-Wetar backarc thrust system to the north, and poorly defined structures on the sides. The suture zone between the NW Australian continental margin and the Sunda-Banda Arcs is still evolving with more than 20 mm/yr of movement measured across the Timor Trough deformation front between Timor and Australia.

  6. Seismicity and Seismic Hazard along the Western part of the Eurasia-Nubia plate boundary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bezzeghoud, Mourad; Fontiela, João; Ferrão, Celia; Borges, José Fernando; Caldeira, Bento; Dib, Assia; Ousadou, Farida

    2016-04-01

    The seismic phenomenon is the most damaging natural hazard known in the Mediterranean area. The western part of the Eurasia-Nubia plate boundary extends from the Azores to the Mediterranean region. The oceanic part of the plate boundary is well delimited from the Azores Islands, along the Azores-Gibraltar fault to approximately 12°W (west of the Strait of Gibraltar). From 12°W to 3.5°E, including the Iberia-Nubia region and extending to the western part of Algeria, the boundary is more diffuse and forms a wider area of deformation. The boundary between the Iberia and Nubia plates is the most complex part of the margin. This region corresponds to the transition from an oceanic boundary to a continental boundary, where Iberia and Nubia collide. Although most earthquakes along this plate boundary are shallow and generally have magnitudes less than 5.5, there have been several high-magnitude events. Many devastating earthquakes, some of them tsunami-triggering, inflicted heavy loss and considerable economic damage to the region. From 1920 to present, three earthquakes with magnitudes of about 8.0 (Mw 8.2, 25 November 1941; Ms 8.0, 25 February 1969; and Mw 7.9, 26 May 1975) occurred in the oceanic region, and four earthquakes with magnitudes of about 7.0 (Mw 7.1, 8 May 1939, Santa Maria Island and Mw 7.1, January 1980, Terceira and Graciosa Islands, both in the Azores; Ms 7.1, 20 May 1931, Azores-Gibraltar fracture zone; and Mw 7.3, 10 October 1980, El Asnam, Algeria) occurred along the western part of the Eurasia-Nubia plate boundary. In general, large earthquakes (M ≥7) occur within the oceanic region, with the exception of the El Asnam (Algeria) earthquakes. Some of these events caused extensive damage. The 1755 Lisbon earthquake (˜Mw 9) on the Portugal Atlantic margin, about 200 km W-SW of Cape St. Vincent, was followed by a tsunami and fires that caused the near-total destruction of Lisbon and adjacent areas. Estimates of the death toll in Lisbon alone (~70

  7. Constraints on the rheology of the lower crust in a strike-slip plate boundary: evidence from the San Quintín xenoliths, Baja California, Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van der Werf, Thomas; Chatzaras, Vasileios; Marcel Kriegsman, Leo; Kronenberg, Andreas; Tikoff, Basil; Drury, Martyn R.

    2017-12-01

    The rheology of lower crust and its transient behavior in active strike-slip plate boundaries remain poorly understood. To address this issue, we analyzed a suite of granulite and lherzolite xenoliths from the upper Pleistocene-Holocene San Quintín volcanic field of northern Baja California, Mexico. The San Quintín volcanic field is located 20 km east of the Baja California shear zone, which accommodates the relative movement between the Pacific plate and Baja California microplate. The development of a strong foliation in both the mafic granulites and lherzolites, suggests that a lithospheric-scale shear zone exists beneath the San Quintín volcanic field. Combining microstructural observations, geothermometry, and phase equilibria modeling, we estimated that crystal-plastic deformation took place at temperatures of 750-890 °C and pressures of 400-560 MPa, corresponding to 15-22 km depth. A hot crustal geotherm of 40 ° C km-1 is required to explain the estimated deformation conditions. Infrared spectroscopy shows that plagioclase in the mafic granulites is relatively dry. Microstructures are interpreted to show that deformation in both the uppermost lower crust and upper mantle was accommodated by a combination of dislocation creep and grain-size-sensitive creep. Recrystallized grain size paleopiezometry yields low differential stresses of 12-33 and 17 MPa for plagioclase and olivine, respectively. The lower range of stresses (12-17 MPa) in the mafic granulite and lherzolite xenoliths is interpreted to be associated with transient deformation under decreasing stress conditions, following an event of stress increase. Using flow laws for dry plagioclase, we estimated a low viscosity of 1.1-1.3×1020 Pa ṡ s for the high temperature conditions (890 °C) in the lower crust. Significantly lower viscosities in the range of 1016-1019 Pa ṡ s, were estimated using flow laws for wet plagioclase. The shallow upper mantle has a low viscosity of 5.7×1019 Pa ṡ s

  8. Receptivity of flat-plate boundary layer in a non-uniform free stream (vorticity normal to the plate)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kogan, M. N.

    1994-01-01

    Recent progress in both the linear and nonlinear aspects of stability theory has highlighted the importance of the receptivity problem. One of the most unclear aspects of receptivity study is the receptivity of boundary-layer flow normal to vortical disturbances. Some experimental and theoretical results permit the proposition that quasi-steady outer-flow vortical disturbances may trigger by-pass transition. In present work such interaction is investigated for vorticity normal to a leading edge. The interest in these types of vortical disturbances arise from theoretical work, where it was shown that small sinusoidal variations of upstream velocity along the spanwise direction can produce significant variations in the boundary-layer profile. In the experimental part of this work, such non-uniform flow was created and the laminar-turbulent transition in this flow was investigated. The experiment was carried out in a low-turbulence direct-flow wind tunnel T-361 at the Central Aerohydrodynamic Institute (TsAGI). The non-uniform flow was produced by laminar or turbulent wakes behind a wire placed normal to the plate upstream of the leading edge. The theoretical part of the work is devoted to studying the unstable disturbance evolution in a boundary layer with strongly non-uniform velocity profiles similar to that produced by outer-flow vorticity. Specifically, the Tollmien-Schlichting wave development in the boundary layer flow with spanwise variations of velocity is investigated.

  9. Plate motions and deformations from geologic and geodetic data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jordan, Thomas H.

    1989-01-01

    The very long baseline interferometry (VLBI) measurements made in the western U.S. since 1979 provide discrete samples of the temporal and spatial deformation field. The interpretation of the VLBI derived rates of deformation requires an examination of geologic information and more densely sampled ground based geodetic data. Triangulation and trilateration data measured on two regional networks, one in the central Mojave Desert and one in the Coast Ranges east of the San Andreas fault, were processed. At the spatial scales spanned by these local geodetic networks, auxiliary geologic and geophysical data were utilized to examine the relation between measured incremental strain and the accommodation of strain seen in local geologic structures, strain release in earthquakes, and principal stress directions inferred from in situ measurements. VLBI data was also processed from stations distributed across the Pacific-North America plate boundary zone in the western U.S. The VLBI data were used to constrain the integrated rate of deformation across portions of the continental plate boundary in California and to provide a tectonic framework to interpret regional geodetic and geologic studies.

  10. Generalized wall function and its application to compressible turbulent boundary layer over a flat plate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, J.; Wu, S. P.

    2017-04-01

    Wall function boundary conditions including the effects of compressibility and heat transfer are improved for compressible turbulent boundary flows. Generalized wall function formulation at zero-pressure gradient is proposed based on coupled velocity and temperature profiles in the entire near-wall region. The parameters in the generalized wall function are well revised. The proposed boundary conditions are integrated into Navier-Stokes computational fluid dynamics code that includes the shear stress transport turbulence model. Numerical results are presented for a compressible boundary layer over a flat plate at zero-pressure gradient. Compared with experimental data, the computational results show that the generalized wall function reduces the first grid spacing in the directed normal to the wall and proves the feasibility and effectivity of the generalized wall function method.

  11. Extension and transtension in the plate boundary zone of the northeastern Caribbean

    SciTech Connect

    Speed, R.C.; Larue, D.K.

    1991-03-01

    The authors propose that the Caribbean (Ca)-North American (NA) plate boundary zone (pbz) from the Puerto Rico Trench to the Venezuelan Basin from Mona Canyon east has been in left-transtension over the last 15-20 ma. A boundary-normal component of extension occurs throughout the pbz and is a principal cause of the Puerto Rico Trench. Such extension is due to WNW velocity of NA-Ca and the northward pullaway of NA from its S-dipping slab, which is below Puerto Rico. Strike slip motion may be taken up among terranes in the pbz by rigid CCW rotation and by oblique slip at theirmore » boundaries. Rotation of the largest terrane, Puerto Rico-Virgin Islands (PRVI), has caused such major structures as the Muertos thrust and Anegada Passage. The model implies NA-Ca velocity estimated from Cayman transforms is more accurate than that from slip vectors from seisms in the NA slab.« less

  12. The interpretation of crustal dynamics data in terms of plate motions and regional deformation near plate boundaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Solomon, Sean C.

    During our participation in the NASA Crustal Dynamics Project under NASA contract NAS-27339 and grant NAG5-814 for the period 1982-1991, we published or submitted for publication 30 research papers and 52 abstracts of presentations at scientific meetings. In addition, five M.I.T. Ph.D. students (Eric Bergman, Steven Bratt, Dan Davis, Jeanne Sauber, Anne Sheehan) were supported wholly or in part by this project during their thesis research. Highlights of our research progress during this period include the following: application of geodetic data to determine rates of strain in the Mojave block and in central California and to clarify the relation of such strain to the San Andreas fault and Pacific-North American plate motions; application of geodetic data to infer post seismic deformation associated with large earthquakes in the Imperial Valley, Hebgen Lake, Argentina, and Chile; determination of the state of stress in oceanic lithosphere from a systematic study of the centroid depths and source mechanisms of oceanic intraplate earthquakes; development of models for the state of stress in young oceanic regions arising from the differential cooling of the lithosphere; determination of the depth extent and rupture characteristics of oceanic transform earthquakes; improved determination of earthquake slip vectors in the Gulf of California, an important data set for the estimation of Pacific-North American plate motions; development of models for the state of stress and mechanics of fold-and-thrust belts and accretionary wedges; development of procedures to invert geoid height, residual bathymetry, and differential body wave travel time residuals for lateral variations in the characteristic temperature and bulk composition of the oceanic upper mantle; and initial GPS measurements of crustal deformation associated with the Imperial-Cerro Prieto fault system in southern California and northern Mexico. Full descriptions of the research conducted on these topics may be

  13. The interpretation of crustal dynamics data in terms of plate motions and regional deformation near plate boundaries

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Solomon, Sean C.

    1991-01-01

    During our participation in the NASA Crustal Dynamics Project under NASA contract NAS-27339 and grant NAG5-814 for the period 1982-1991, we published or submitted for publication 30 research papers and 52 abstracts of presentations at scientific meetings. In addition, five M.I.T. Ph.D. students (Eric Bergman, Steven Bratt, Dan Davis, Jeanne Sauber, Anne Sheehan) were supported wholly or in part by this project during their thesis research. Highlights of our research progress during this period include the following: application of geodetic data to determine rates of strain in the Mojave block and in central California and to clarify the relation of such strain to the San Andreas fault and Pacific-North American plate motions; application of geodetic data to infer post seismic deformation associated with large earthquakes in the Imperial Valley, Hebgen Lake, Argentina, and Chile; determination of the state of stress in oceanic lithosphere from a systematic study of the centroid depths and source mechanisms of oceanic intraplate earthquakes; development of models for the state of stress in young oceanic regions arising from the differential cooling of the lithosphere; determination of the depth extent and rupture characteristics of oceanic transform earthquakes; improved determination of earthquake slip vectors in the Gulf of California, an important data set for the estimation of Pacific-North American plate motions; development of models for the state of stress and mechanics of fold-and-thrust belts and accretionary wedges; development of procedures to invert geoid height, residual bathymetry, and differential body wave travel time residuals for lateral variations in the characteristic temperature and bulk composition of the oceanic upper mantle; and initial GPS measurements of crustal deformation associated with the Imperial-Cerro Prieto fault system in southern California and northern Mexico. Full descriptions of the research conducted on these topics may be

  14. How does the 2010 El Mayor - Cucapah Earthquake Rupture Connect to the Southern California Plate Boundary Fault System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Donnellan, A.; Ben-Zion, Y.; Arrowsmith, R.

    2016-12-01

    The Pacific - North American plate boundary in southern California is marked by several major strike slip faults. The 2010 M7.2 El Mayor - Cucapah earthquake ruptured 120 km of upper crust in Baja California to the US-Mexico border. The earthquake triggered slip along an extensive network of faults in the Salton Trough from the Mexican border to the southern end of the San Andreas fault. Earthquakes >M5 were triggered in the gap between the Laguna Salada and Elsinore faults at Ocotillo and on the Coyote Creek segment of the San Jacinto fault 20 km northwest of Borrego Springs. UAVSAR observations, collected since October of 2009, measure slip associated with the M5.7 Ocotillo aftershock with deformation continuing into 2014. The Elsinore fault has been remarkably quiet, however, with only M5.0 and M5.2 earthquakes occurring on the Coyote Mountains segment of the fault in 1940 and 1968 respectively. In contrast, the Imperial Valley has been quite active historically with numerous moderate events occurring since 1935. Moderate event activity is increasing along the San Jacinto fault zone (SJFZ), especially the trifurcation area, where 6 of 12 historic earthquakes in this 20 km long fault zone have occurred since 2000. However, no recent deformation has been detected using UAVSAR measurements in this area, including the recent M5.2 June 2016 Borrego earthquake. Does the El Mayor - Cucapah rupture connect to and transfer stress primarily to a single southern California fault or several? What is its role relative to the background plate motion? UAVSAR observations indicate that the southward extension of the Elsinore fault has recently experienced the most localized deformation. Seismicity suggests that the San Jacinto fault is more active than neighboring major faults, and geologic evidence suggests that the Southern San Andreas fault has been the major plate boundary fault in southern California. Topographic data with 3-4 cm resolution using structure from motion from

  15. Structural and Tectonic Map Along the Pacific-North America Plate Boundary in Northern Gulf of California, Sonora Desert and Valle de Mexicali, Mexico, from Seismic Reflection Evidence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gonzalez-Escobar, M.; Suarez-Vidal, F.; Mendoza-Borunda, R.; Martin Barajas, A.; Pacheco-Romero, M.; Arregui-Estrada, S.; Gallardo-Mata, C.; Sanchez-Garcia, C.; Chanes-Martinez, J.

    2012-12-01

    Between 1978 and 1983, Petróleos Mexicanos (PEMEX) carried on an intense exploration program in the northern Gulf of California, the Sonora Desert and the southern part of the Mexicali Valley. This program was supported by a seismic reflection field operation. The collected seismic data was 2D, with travel time of 6 s recording, in 48 channels, and the source energy was: dynamite, vibroseis and air guns. Since 2007 to present time, the existing seismic data has been re-processing and ire-interpreting as part of a collaboration project between the PEMEX's Subdirección de Exploración (PEMEX) and CICESE. The study area is located along a large portion of the Pacific-North America plate boundary in the northern Gulf of California and the Southern part of the Salton Trough tectonic province (Mexicali Valley). We present the result of the processes reflection seismic lines. Many of the previous reported known faults were identify along with the first time described located within the study region. We identified regions with different degree of tectonic activity. In structural map it can see the location of many of these known active faults and their associated seismic activity, as well as other structures with no associated seismicity. Where some faults are mist placed they were deleted or relocated based on new information. We included historical seismicity for the region. We present six reflection lines that cross the aftershocks zone of the El Mayor-Cucapah earthquake of April 4, 2010 (Mw7.2). The epicenter of this earthquake and most of the aftershocks are located in a region where pervious to this earthquake no major earthquakes are been reported. A major result of this study is to demonstrate that there are many buried faults that increase the seismic hazard.

  16. Lower plate deformation structures along the Costa Rica erosive plate boundary - results from IODP Expedition 344 (CRISP 2)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brandstätter, Jennifer; Kurz, Walter; Micheuz, Peter; Krenn, Kurt

    2015-04-01

    1414 is located ~1 km seaward of the deformation front offshore the Osa Peninsula and Caño Island. Primary science goals at Site U1414 included characterization of the alteration state of the magmatic basement. Brittle structures within the incoming plate (sites U1380, U1414) are mineralized extensional fractures and shear fractures. The shear fractures mainly show a normal component of shear. Within the sedimentary sequence both types of fractures dip steeply (vertical to subvertical) and strike NNE-SSW. Deformation bands trend roughly ENE-WSW, sub-parallel to the trend of the Cocos ridge. Structures in the Cocos Ridge basalt mainly comprise mineralized veins at various orientations. A preferred orientation of strike directions was not observed. Some veins show straight boundaries, others are characterized by an irregular geometry characterized by brecciated wall rock clasts embedded within vein precipitates. The vein mineralization was analysed in detail by RAMAN spectroscopy. Precipitation conditions and fluid chemistry were analysed by fluid inclusions entrapped within vein minerals. Vein mineralizations mainly consist of carbonate (fibrous aragonite, calcite), chalcedony, and quartz. Vein mineralization is mainly characterized by zoned antitaxial growth of carbonate fibres including a suture along the central vein domains. Quartz is often characterized by fibre growth of crystals perpendicular to the vein boundaries, too. These zoned veins additinally have wall rock alteration seams consisting of clay minerals. The precipitation sequence basically indicates that fluid chemistry evolved from an CO2-rich towards a SiO2- rich fluid.

  17. Unsteady laminar boundary-layer calculations on oscillating configurations including backflow. Part 1: Flat plate, oscillating in its own plane

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Geissler, W.

    1983-01-01

    A finite difference method has been developed to calculate the unsteady boundary layer over an oscillating flat plate. Low- and high frequency approximations were used for comparison with numerical results. Special emphasis was placed on the behavior of the flow and on the numerical calculation procedure as soon as reversed flow has occurred over part of the oscillation cycle. The numerical method displayed neither problems nor singular behavior at the beginning of or within the reversed flow region. Calculations, however, came to a limit where the back-flow region reached the plate's leading edge in the case of high oscillation amplitudes. It is assumed that this limit is caused by the special behavior of the flow at the plate's leading edge where the boundary layer equations are not valid.

  18. Inherited segmentation of the Iberian-African margins and tectonic reconstruction of a diffuse plate boundary.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fernàndez, Manel; Torne, Montserrat; Vergés, Jaume; Casciello, Emilio

    2016-04-01

    Diffuse plate-boundary regions are characterized by non-well defined contacts between tectonic plates thus making difficult their reconstruction through time. The Western Mediterranean is one of these regions, where the convergence between the African and Iberian plates since Late Cretaceous resulted in the Betic-Rif arcuate orogen, the Gulf of Cadiz imbricate wedge, and the Alboran back-arc basin. Whereas the Iberia-Africa plate boundary is well defined west to the Gorringe Bank and along the Gloria Fault, it becomes much more diffuse eastwards with seismicity spreading over both the south-Iberian and north-African margins. Gravity data, when filtered for short wavelengths, show conspicuous positive Bouguer anomalies associated with the Gorringe Bank, the Gulf of Cadiz High and the Ronda/Beni-Bousera peridotitic massifs reflecting an inherited Jurassic margin segmentation. The subsequent Alpine convergence between Africa and Iberia reactivated these domains, producing crustal-scale thrusting in the Atlantic segments and eventually subduction in the proto-Mediterranean segments. The Jurassic segmentation of the Iberia-Africa margins substantiates the double-polarity subduction model proposed for the region characterized by a change from SE-dipping polarity in the Gorringe, Gulf of Cadiz and Betic-Rif domains, to NW-dipping polarity in the proto-Algerian domain. Therefore, the Algerian and Tyrrhenian basins in the east and the Alboran basin in the west are the result of SSE-E and NW-W retreating slabs of oceanic and/or hyper-extended Tethyan domains, respectively.

  19. Water Release from Cold Serpentinized Forearc Mantle During Subduction Associated with Changes in Incoming Oceanic Plate Thermal Structure and Plate Boundary Kinematics: New Insights into Serpentinite Belts and Plate-Boundary Rheology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kirby, Stephen

    2016-04-01

    Kirby, Wang, and Brocher (Earth Planets and Space, 2014) recently showed how the change in kinematics of the California margin from subduction motion to continental transform motion with the birth and growth of the San Andreas Fault System (SAFS) beginning at about 33 Ma BP likely led to a warming of the former forearc mantle and the release of water from serpentinized mantle by dehydration and a likely increase in fluid pressures along the SAFS. Such a mantle source of pressurized water gives insights into both the low sliding resistance for the SAFS and the mobilization and ascent of some serpentinized mantle peridotites through the crust. Thermal modeling by others has also shown that changes in the incoming plate age and subduction rate can also lead to warming of the forearc mantle during subduction. This development gives insights into the Mesozoic and Paleogene ages of emplacement of some, but not all, California serpentinites. Recent mineralogical and geochemical observations of serpentinite blocks in serpentinize mélange bodies in the San Francisco Bay Area (Uno and Kirby, 2014 AGU Meeting and Lewis and Kirby, 2015 AGU Meeting) suggest that these rocks sustained multiple stages of serpentinization that are broadly consistent with the model of Kirby et al. (2014). A new development comes from interpretation of investigations in the literature of localized late-stage silica-carbonate-water alteration of serpentinite bodies in California that this alteration occurred largely in Neogene time when the highest rates of water release from the former forearc mantle probably occurred. This presentation also suggests that the occurrence of serpentinite belts emplaced in Cenozoic time during changing plate-boundary kinematics, such as the Cenozoic closing of the Tethys Ocean bordering Eurasia by subduction and collision and arc reversal and decreasing convergence rates under the Greater Antilles and Colombia and New Guinea, may give insights into the serpentinite

  20. Plumes do not Exist: Plate Circulation is Confined to Upper Mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamilton, W. B.

    2002-12-01

    Plumes from deep mantle are widely conjectured to define an absolute reference frame, inaugurate rifting, drive plates, and profoundly modify oceans and continents. Mantle properties and composition are assumed to be whatever enables plumes. Nevertheless, purported critical evidence for plume speculation is false, and all data are better interpreted without plumes. Plume fantasies are made ever more complex and ad hoc to evade contradictory data, and have no predictive value because plumes do not exist. All plume conjecture derives from Hawaii and the guess that the Emperor-Hawaii inflection records a 60-degree change in Pacific plate direction at 45 Ma. Paleomagnetic latitudes and smooth Pacific spreading patterns disprove any such change. Rationales for other fixed plumes collapse when tested, and hypotheses of jumping, splitting, and gyrating plumes are specious. Thermal and physical properties of Hawaiian lithosphere falsify plume predictions. Purported tomographic support elsewhere represents artifacts and misleading presentations. Asthenosphere is everywhere near solidus temperature, so melt needs a tensional setting for egress but not local heat. Gradational and inconsistent contrasts between MORB and OIB are as required by depth-varying melt generation and behavior in contrasted settings and do not indicate systematically unlike sources. MORB melts rise, with minimal reaction, through hot asthenosphere, whereas OIB melts react with cool lithosphere, and lose mass, by crystallizing refractories and retaining and assimilating fusibles. The unfractionated lower mantle of plume conjecture is contrary to cosmologic and thermodynamic data, for mantle below 660 km is more refractory than that above. Subduction, due to density inversion by top-down cooling that forms oceanic lithosphere, drives plate tectonics and upper-mantle circulation. It organizes plate motions and lithosphere stress, which controls plate boundaries and volcanic chains. Hinge rollback is the

  1. Pacific tectonics: Eastern-Pacific "stationarity" of EPR and causative association with Equator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bostrom, R. C.

    2003-04-01

    The fundamentals of present-day Pacific tectonics are observed to be: its N/S mirror-symmetry about the Equator, displayed by the major transforms; its E/W asymmetry, represented by the western motion of the world's largest plate, originating in the eastern Equatorial Pacific; and correspondingly, development of the globally most voluminous subduction, at the western Pacific margin. The configuration seen at present is maintained at a fundamental level. The maximum in convective upwelling develops as coalescing plumes in the Galapagos region in the eastern Pacific. This has been found (Lonsdale 1988; McGuire and Hilde 2002; Chen and Lin 2002) to produce steady westward propagation of the Nazca/Cocos axis. Continually renewed, it determines the orientation and locus of a quasi-stationary EPR, centered on the Equator. Magnetic dating of boundaries in satellite gravity images records the Cenozoic history of the EPR, namely re-orientation in consequence of slow counter-clockwise re-orientation of the Equator. Relative to the present, during Maastrichtian times both Equator and plate motion were aligned WNW, recorded paleomagnetically and by features in the western, older part of the Pacific crust. Material subducted at that time accumulated principally beneath the SE Asia margin. Its slow heating is believed to play a role in the deep-seated activity and back-arc spreading associated with latter-day convergence in that region. The mechanism primarily responsible for the Pacific regime may be that mantle convection is not immune, as is generally tacitly supposed, to the minute westward tilt (c. 0.36°) under which it takes place. The latter, now astronomically quantifiable without tidal identification, represents the attraction component of water and solid-Earth masses which averaged over unit day lags the direction of purely geocentric g. Under gravity minutely E/W asymmetric, convection as always promoting the most efficient dissipative configuration, favors

  2. 49 CFR 71.10 - Pacific zone.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... Office of the Secretary of Transportation STANDARD TIME ZONE BOUNDARIES § 71.10 Pacific zone. The fifth zone, the Pacific standard time zone, includes that part of the continental United States that is west of the boundary line between the mountain and Pacific standard time zones described in § 71.9, but...

  3. Active Tectonics of the Far North Pacific Observed with GPS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elliott, J.; Freymueller, J. T.; Jiang, Y.; Leonard, L. J.; Hyndman, R. D.; Mazzotti, S.

    2017-12-01

    The idea that the tectonics of the northeastern Pacific is defined by relatively discrete deformation along the boundary between the Pacific and North American plates has given way to a more complex picture of broad plate boundary zones and distributed deformation. This is due in large part to the Plate Boundary Observatory and several focused GPS studies, which have greatly increased the density of high-quality GPS data throughout the region. We will present an updated GPS velocity field in a consistent reference frame as well as a new, integrated block model that sheds light on regional tectonics and provides improved estimates of motion along faults and their potential seismic hazard. Crustal motions in southern Alaska are strongly influenced by the collision and flat-slab subduction of the Yakutat block along the central Gulf of Alaska margin. In the area nearest to the collisional front, small blocks showing evidence of internal deformation are required. East of the front, block motions show clockwise rotation into the Canadian Cordillera while west of the front there are counterclockwise rotations that extend along the Alaska forearc, suggesting crustal extrusion. Farther from the convergent margin, the crust appears to move as rigid blocks, with uniform motion over large areas. In western Alaska, block motions show a southwesterly rotation into the Bering Sea. Arctic Alaska displays southeasterly motions that gradually transition into easterly motion in Canada. Much of the southeastern Alaska panhandle and coastal British Columbia exhibit northwesterly motions. Although the relative plate motions are mainly accommodated along major faults systems, including the Fairweather-Queen Charlotte transform system, the St. Elias fold-and-thrust belt, the Denali-Totschunda system, and the Alaska-Aleutian subduction zone, a number of other faults accommodate lesser but still significant amounts of motion in the model. These faults include the eastern Denali/Duke River

  4. Distribution and migration of aftershocks of the 2010 Mw 7.4 Ogasawara Islands intraplate normal-faulting earthquake related to a fracture zone in the Pacific plate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Obana, Koichiro; Takahashi, Tsutomu; No, Tetsuo; Kaiho, Yuka; Kodaira, Shuichi; Yamashita, Mikiya; Sato, Takeshi; Nakamura, Takeshi

    2014-04-01

    describe the aftershocks of a Mw 7.4 intraplate normal-faulting earthquake that occurred 150 km east Ogasawara (Bonin) Islands, Japan, on 21 December 2010. It occurred beneath the outer trench slope of the Izu-Ogasawara trench, where the Pacific plate subducts beneath the Philippine Sea plate. Aftershock observations using ocean bottom seismographs (OBSs) began soon after the earthquake and multichannel seismic reflection surveys were conducted across the aftershock area. Aftershocks were distributed in a NW-SE belt 140 km long, oblique to the N-S trench axis. They formed three subparallel lineations along a fracture zone in the Pacific plate. The OBS observations combined with data from stations on Chichi-jima and Haha-jima Islands revealed a migration of the aftershock activity. The first hour, which likely outlines the main shock rupture, was limited to an 80 km long area in the central part of the subsequent aftershock area. The first hour activity occurred mainly around, and appears to have been influenced by, nearby large seamounts and oceanic plateau, such as the Ogasawara Plateau and the Uyeda Ridge. Over the following days, the aftershocks expanded beyond or into these seamounts and plateau. The aftershock distribution and migration suggest that crustal heterogeneities related to a fracture zone and large seamounts and oceanic plateau in the incoming Pacific plate affected the rupture of the main shock. Such preexisting structures may influence intraplate normal-faulting earthquakes in other regions of plate flexure prior to subduction.

  5. Geodetic Constraints on the Rigidity and Eastern Boundary of the Sierra Nevada Micro-Plate, from Mohawk Valley to Southern Walker Lane

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kreemer, C. W.; Hammond, W. C.; Blewitt, G.

    2009-12-01

    The Sierra Nevada - Great Valley (SNGV) micro-plate has long been recognized as a tectonically rigid, though mobile, entity within the Pacific - North America plate boundary zone. The motion of the SNGV relative to stable North America (and the Colorado Plateau) provides the kinematic boundary condition for, and perhaps drives, the deformation in the Basin and Range Province (BRP) and Walker Lane. In the north the motion of the SNGV is aligned with the Mohawk Valley fault zone, which could have a slip rate of over a few mm/yr. The crest of the Sierras marks the SNGV’s eastern edge, but the obliquity between orientation of this boundary and the block’s motion implies an expected increase in rangefront-normal extension from the northern to southern Walker Lane. We use new GPS data from the EarthScope Plate Boundary Observatory (PBO) and our own semi-continuous MAGNET network to revisit the following questions: 1) Do the data still support rigidity of the SNGV?; 2) How far east does the rigidity extend and how does this relate to SNGV lithology?; 3) How does the direction of SNGV motion relate to the strike of its eastern margin and observed strain partitioning (and its along strike variation) in the Walker Lane?; and 4) How is SNGV-BRP motion accommodated between the Walker Lane and the Cascadia forearc? We analyze data from all the available continuous GPS sites in the greater SNGV region, including new data from PBO, as well as data from MAGNET. All data are processed with the GIPSY-OASIS II precise point positioning software using recently reprocessed orbits from JPL's IGS Analysis Center. The processing includes satellite and station antenna calibrations and all data have the phase ambiguities fixed using the Ambizap algorithm. Positions are estimated in our custom-made North America reference frame in which continental-scale common-mode errors are removed. Velocities and uncertainties are estimated using the CATS software in which we assuming an error model

  6. Jet-boundary and Plan-form Corrections for Partial-Span Models with Reflection-Plane, End-Plate, or No End-Plate in a Closed Circular Wind Tunnel

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sivells, James C; Deters, Owen J

    1946-01-01

    A method is presented for determining the jet-boundary and plan-form corrections necessary for application to test data for a partial-span model with a reflection plane, an end plate, or no end plate in a closed circular wind tunnel. Examples are worked out for a partial-span model with each of the three end conditions in the Langley 19-foot pressure tunnel and the corrections are applied to measured values of lift, drag, pitching-moment, rolling-moment, and yawing-moment coefficients.

  7. Plate tectonic reconstruction of South and East Asia since 43 Ma using seismic tomographic constraints: role of the subducted ';East Asia Sea' (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, J. E.; Suppe, J.; Renqi, L.; Kanda, R. V.

    2013-12-01

    Lithosphere that subducts at convergent plate boundaries provides a potentially decipherable plate tectonic record. In this study we use global seismic tomography to map subducted slabs in the upper and lower mantle under South and East Asia to constrain plate reconstructions. The mapped slabs include the Pacific, the Indian Ocean and Banda Sea, the Molucca Sea, Celebes Sea, the Philippine Sea and Eurasia, New Guinea and other lower mantle detached slabs. The mapped slabs were restored to the earth surface and used with Gplates software to constrain a globally-consistent, fully animated plate reconstruction of South and East Asia. Three principal slab elements dominate possible plate reconstructions: [1] The mapped Pacific slabs near the Izu-Bonin and the Marianas trenches form a subvertical slab curtain or wall extending down to 1500 km in the lower mantle. The ';slab curtain' geometry and restored slabs lengths indicate that the Pacific subduction zone has remained fixed within +/- 250 km of its present position since ~43 Ma. In contrast, the Tonga Pacific slab curtain records at least 1000 km trench rollback associated with expansion of back-arc basins. [2] West of the Pacific slab curtain, a set of flat slabs exist in the lower mantle and record a major 8000km by 2500-3000km ocean that existed at ~43 Ma. This now-subducted ocean, which we call the ';East Asian Sea', existed between the Ryukyu Asian margin and the Lord Howe hotspot, present-day eastern Australia, and fills a major gap in Cenozoic plate reconstructions between Indo-Australia, the Pacific Ocean and Asia. [3] An observed ';picture puzzle' fit between the restored edges of the Philippine Sea, Molucca Sea and Indian Ocean slabs suggests that the Philippine Sea was once part of a larger Indo-Australian Ocean. Previous models of Philippine Sea plate motions are in conflict with the location of the East Asian Sea lithosphere. Using the mapped slab constraints, we propose the following 43 Ma to 0 plate

  8. Prehistoric earthquakes on the Caribbean-South American plate boundary, central Range Fault, Trinidad

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Prentice, Carol S.; Crosby, Christopher J.; Weber, John C.; Ragona, Daniel

    2010-01-01

    Recent geodetic studies suggest that the Central Range fault is the principal plate-boundary structure accommodating strike-slip motion between the Caribbean and South American plates. Our study shows that the fault forms a topographically prominent lineament in central Trinidad. Results from a paleoseismic investigation at a site where Holocene sediments have been deposited across the Central Range fault indicate that it ruptured the ground surface most recently between 2710 and 550 yr B.P. If the geodetic slip rate of 9–15 mm/yr is representative of Holocene slip rates, our paleoseismic data suggest that at least 4.9 m of potential slip may have accumulated on the fault and could be released during a future large earthquake (M > 7).

  9. Prehistoric earthquakes on the Caribbean-South American plate boundary, central range fault, Trinidad

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Prentice, C.S.; Weber, J.C.; Crosby, C.J.; Ragona, D.

    2010-01-01

    Recent geodetic studies suggest that the Central Range fault is the principal plate-boundary structure accommodating strike-slip motion between the Caribbean and South American plates. Our study shows that the fault forms a topographically prominent lineament in central Trinidad. Results from a paleoseismic investigation at a site where Holocene sediments have been deposited across the Central Range fault indicate that it ruptured the ground surface most recently between 2710 and 550 yr B.P. If the geodetic slip rate of 9-15 mm/yr is representative of Holocene slip rates, our paleoseismic data suggest that at least 4.9 m of potential slip may have accumulated on the fault and could be released during a future large earthquake (M > 7). ?? 2010 Geological Society of America.

  10. Providing Hands on Experiences to Museum Visitors to Explore and Learn about Earthquakes and their Impacts in the Pacific Northwest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olds, S. E.; Schiffman, C. R.; Butler, R. F.; Farley, M.; Frankel, S.; Hunter, N.; Lillie, R. J.

    2013-12-01

    Over the past ten years, UNAVCO has developed a suite of learning materials for formal undergraduate and grades 6-12 classroom environments, integrating GPS data from the EarthScope Plate Boundary Observatory (PBO) to explore Earth science processes. To make complex Earth processes accessible to general audiences, UNAVCO has designed a multi-component visiting museum exhibit that explores the tectonic setting of the United States Pacific Northwest, hazards of living on a plate boundary, and the technologies being used to study the plate motion and in the future, help communities become more resilient to the impacts of earthquakes. This exhibit was installed in Fall 2013 at the Oregon State University (OSU) Hatfield Marine Science Center (HMSC) in Newport, Oregon. Through multiple hands-on elements, visitors to the HMSC exhibit explore and experience the build up and release of strain in the region, along with some of the technologies used to measure these changes. In one component, visitors compress a model of the Pacific Northwest to feel the build up of strain in the landscape and observe the movement of land over time. Supporting panels connect this movement to the measurements currently being observed by the network of PBO and other GPS stations in the Pacific Northwest. In another component, visitors learn about the recurrence interval for earthquakes at the Juan De Fuca - North America plate boundary by turning a handle to slowly move and compress plates until a simulated earthquake occurs. A related component explores how an earthquake early warning system (EEWS) of the future might combine seismic data collected by both seismometers and real time GPS to allow people and communities time to prepare for oncoming ground shaking and tsunami after an earthquake. Several technologies are also highlighted throughout the exhibit, including information panels that compare the accuracy of high precision GPS with smartphone technologies. Additionally, models of a full

  11. A new global plate velocity model using space geodetic data, REVEL

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sella, G. F.; Dixon, T. H.; Mao, A.; Stein, S.

    2001-12-01

    Our model describes the relative velocities of 19 plates and continental blocks, and is derived from publicly available space geodetic (primarily GPS) data for the period 1993-2000. We include an independent and rigorous estimate for GPS velocity uncertainties in order to assess plate rigidity, and propagate these uncertainties to the velocity predictions. By excluding sites that may be influenced by seismic cycle effects within the plate boundary zone as well sites affected by glacial isostatic adjustment, we believe the plate velocity model is representative of geologically Recent motions (last ~10,000 years) and have termed it REVEL, for Recent velocity. Departures from short term rigid plate behaviour due to glacial isostatic adjustment are clearly observed for North America and Eurasia. Australia shows possible differences from rigid plate behavior in a manner consistent with its mapped intraplate stress field. We see statistically significant differences between the velocity predictions of REVEL-2000 and those of the NUVEL-1A geologic model for about one third of tested plate pairs. Pacific-North America motion and motion of the Caribbean plate with respect to North and South America are significantly faster than NUVEL-1A, presumably reflecting systematic errors in the geological model because the relevant rate data do not reflect the full plate rate. Many other differences between the geodetic and geological models appear to reflect real velocity changes over the last few million years. Nubia-Arabia and Arabia-Eurasia appear to be slowing, perhaps related to the collision of Arabia with Eurasia and consequent increased resistance to Arabia's northward motion Several other plate pairs, including Nazca-Pacific, Nazca-South America and Nubia-South America, are experiencing gradual slowing that dates back to about 25 Ma. This is the time of the initiation of the modern Andes mountains, and we speculate that associated crustal thickening on the leading edge of

  12. Locking, mass flux and topographic response at convergent plate boundaries - the Chilean case

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oncken, Onno

    2016-04-01

    On the long term, convergent plate boundaries have been shown to be controlled by either accretion/underplating or by subduction erosion. Vertical surface motion is coupled to convergence rate - typically with an uplift rate of the coastal area ranging from 0 to +50% of convergence rate in accretive systems, and -20 to +30% in erosive systems. Vertical kinematics, however, are not necessarily linked to horizontal strain mode, i.e. upper plate shortening or extension, in a simple way. This range of kinematic behaviors - as well as their acceleration where forearcs collide with oceanic ridges/plateau - is well expressed along the Chilean plate margin. Towards the short end of the time scale, deformation appears to exhibit a close correlation with the frictional properties and geodetic locking at the plate interface. Corroborating analogue experiments of strain accumulation during multiple earthquake cycles, forearc deformation and uplift focus above the downdip and updip end of seismic coupling and slip and are each related to a particular stage of the seismic cycle, but with opposite trends for both domains. Similarly, barriers separating locked domains along strike appear to accumulate most upper plate faulting interseismically. Hence, locking patters are reflected in topography. From the long-term memory contained in the forearc topography the relief of the Chilean forearc seems to reflect long term stability of the observed heterogeneity of locking at the plate interface. This has fundamental implications for spatial and temporal distribution of seismic hazard. Finally, the nature of locking at the plate interface controlling the above kinematic behavior appears to be strongly controlled by the degree of fluid overpressuring at the plate interface suggesting that the hydraulic system at the interface takes a key role for the forearc response.

  13. An eddy-viscosity treatment of the unsteady turbulent boundary layer on a flat plate in an expansion tube

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gupta, R. N.; Trimpi, R. L.

    1974-01-01

    An analysis is presented for the relaxation of a turbulent boundary layer on a semiinfinite flat plate after passage of a shock wave and a trailing driver gas-driven gas interface. The problem has special application to expansion tube flows. The flow-governing equations have been transformed into the Lamcrocco variables. The numerical results indicate that a fully turbulent boundary layer relaxes faster to the final steady-state values of heat transfer and skin-friction than a fully laminar boundary layer.

  14. How the interior viscosity structure of a terrestrial planet controls plate driving forces and plate tectonics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoeink, T.; Lenardic, A.; Jellinek, M.; Richards, M. A.

    2011-12-01

    One of the fundamental unresolved problems in Earth and planetary science is the generation of plate tectonics from mantle convection. Important achievements can be made when considering rheological properties in the context of mantle convection dynamics. Among these milestones are (1) a deeper understanding of the balance of forces that drive and resist plate motion and (2) the dynamic generation of narrow plate boundaries (that lead to a piecewise continuous surface velocity distribution). Extending classic plate-tectonic theory we predict a plate driving force due to viscous coupling at the base of the plate from fast flow in the asthenosphere. Flow in the asthenosphere is due to shear-driven contributions from an overriding plate and due to additional pressure-driven contributions. We use scaling analysis to show that the extent to which this additional plate-driving force contributes to plate motions depends on the lateral dimension of plates and on the relative viscosities and thicknesses of lithosphere and asthenosphere. Whereas slab-pull forces always govern the motions of plates with a lateral extent greater than the mantle depth, asthenosphere-drive forces can be relatively more important for smaller (shorter wavelength) plates, large relative asthenosphere viscosities or large asthenosphere thicknesses. Published plate velocities, tomographic images and age-binned mean shear wave velocity anomaly data allow us to estimate the relative contributions of slab-pull and asthenosphere-drive forces driving the motions of the Atlantic and Pacific plates. At the global scale of terrestrial planets, we use 3D spherical shell simulations of mantle convection with temperature-, depth- and stress dependent rheology to demonstrate that a thin low-viscosity layer (asthenosphere) governs convective stresses imparted to the lithosphere. We find, consistent with theoretical predictions, that convective stresses increase for thinner asthenospheres. This result might

  15. Quantifying dispersal from hydrothermal vent fields in the western Pacific Ocean

    PubMed Central

    Mitarai, Satoshi; Watanabe, Hiromi; Nakajima, Yuichi; Shchepetkin, Alexander F.; McWilliams, James C.

    2016-01-01

    Hydrothermal vent fields in the western Pacific Ocean are mostly distributed along spreading centers in submarine basins behind convergent plate boundaries. Larval dispersal resulting from deep-ocean circulations is one of the major factors influencing gene flow, diversity, and distributions of vent animals. By combining a biophysical model and deep-profiling float experiments, we quantify potential larval dispersal of vent species via ocean circulation in the western Pacific Ocean. We demonstrate that vent fields within back-arc basins could be well connected without particular directionality, whereas basin-to-basin dispersal is expected to occur infrequently, once in tens to hundreds of thousands of years, with clear dispersal barriers and directionality associated with ocean currents. The southwest Pacific vent complex, spanning more than 4,000 km, may be connected by the South Equatorial Current for species with a longer-than-average larval development time. Depending on larval dispersal depth, a strong western boundary current, the Kuroshio Current, could bridge vent fields from the Okinawa Trough to the Izu-Bonin Arc, which are 1,200 km apart. Outcomes of this study should help marine ecologists estimate gene flow among vent populations and design optimal marine conservation plans to protect one of the most unusual ecosystems on Earth. PMID:26929376

  16. Quantifying dispersal from hydrothermal vent fields in the western Pacific Ocean.

    PubMed

    Mitarai, Satoshi; Watanabe, Hiromi; Nakajima, Yuichi; Shchepetkin, Alexander F; McWilliams, James C

    2016-03-15

    Hydrothermal vent fields in the western Pacific Ocean are mostly distributed along spreading centers in submarine basins behind convergent plate boundaries. Larval dispersal resulting from deep-ocean circulations is one of the major factors influencing gene flow, diversity, and distributions of vent animals. By combining a biophysical model and deep-profiling float experiments, we quantify potential larval dispersal of vent species via ocean circulation in the western Pacific Ocean. We demonstrate that vent fields within back-arc basins could be well connected without particular directionality, whereas basin-to-basin dispersal is expected to occur infrequently, once in tens to hundreds of thousands of years, with clear dispersal barriers and directionality associated with ocean currents. The southwest Pacific vent complex, spanning more than 4,000 km, may be connected by the South Equatorial Current for species with a longer-than-average larval development time. Depending on larval dispersal depth, a strong western boundary current, the Kuroshio Current, could bridge vent fields from the Okinawa Trough to the Izu-Bonin Arc, which are 1,200 km apart. Outcomes of this study should help marine ecologists estimate gene flow among vent populations and design optimal marine conservation plans to protect one of the most unusual ecosystems on Earth.

  17. Plate boundary and major fault system in the overriding plate within the Shumagin gap at the Alaska-Aleutian subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Becel, A.; Shillington, D. J.; Nedimovic, M. R.; Keranen, K. M.; Li, J.; Webb, S. C.; Kuehn, H.

    2013-12-01

    Structure in the overriding plate is one of the parameters that may increase the tsunamigenic potential of a subduction zone but also influence the seismogenic behavior and segmentation of great earthquake rupture. The Alaska-Aleutian margin is characterized by along-strike changes in plate interface coupling over relatively small distances. Here, we present trench normal multichannel seismic (MCS) profiles acquired across the Shumagin gap that has not broken in many decades and appears to be weakly coupled. The high fold, deep penetration (636 channel, 8-km long streamer, 6600 cu.in airgun source) MCS data were acquired as part of the ALEUT project. This dataset gives us critical new constraints on the interplate boundary that can be traced over ~100 km distance beneath the forearc with high variation in its reflection response with depth. These profiles also reveal the detailed upper plate fault structure and forearc morphology. Clear reflections in the overriding plate appear to delineate one or more large faults that cross the shelf and the upper slope. These faults are observed 75 km back from the trench and seem to branch at depth and connect to the plate interface within this gap at ~11 s twtt. We compare the reflective structure of these faults to that of the plate boundary and examine where it intersects the megathrust with respect of the expected downdip limit of coupling. We also compare this major structure with the seismicity recorded in this sector. The imaged fault system is associated with a large deep basin (~6s twt) that is an inherited structure formed during the pre-Aleutian period. Basins faults appear to have accommodated primarily normal motion, although folding of sediments near the fault and complicated fault geometries in the shallow section may indicate that this fault has accommodated other types of motion during its history that may reflect the stress-state at the megathrust over time. The deformation within the youngest sediment also

  18. The Caribbean-South American plate boundary at 65°W: Results from wide-angle seismic data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bezada, M. J.; Magnani, M. B.; Zelt, C. A.; Schmitz, M.; Levander, A.

    2010-08-01

    We present the results of the analysis of new wide-angle seismic data across the Caribbean-South American plate boundary in eastern Venezuela at about 65°W. The ˜500 km long profile crosses the boundary in one of the few regions dominated by extensional structures, as most of the southeastern Caribbean margin is characterized by the presence of fold and thrust belts. A combination of first-arrival traveltime inversion and simultaneous inversion of PmP and Pn arrivals was used to develop a P wave velocity model of the crust and the uppermost mantle. At the main strike-slip fault system, we image the Cariaco Trough, a major pull-apart basin along the plate boundary. The crust under the Southern Caribbean Deformed Belt exhibits a thickness of ˜15 km, suggesting that the Caribbean Large Igneous Province extends to this part of the Caribbean plate. The velocity structures of basement highs and offshore sedimentary basins imaged by the profile are comparable to those of features found in other parts of the margin, suggesting similarities in their tectonic history. We do not image an abrupt change in Moho depth or velocity structure across the main strike-slip system, as has been observed elsewhere along the margin. It is possible that a terrane of Caribbean island arc origin was accreted to South America at this site and was subsequently bisected by the strike-slip fault system. The crust under the continental portion of the profile is thinner than observed elsewhere along the margin, possibly as a result of thinning during Jurassic rifting.

  19. Calculation of oblique-shock-wave laminar-boundary-layer interaction on a flat plate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Goldberg, U.; Reshotko, E.

    1980-01-01

    A finite difference solution to the problem of the interaction between an impinging oblique shock wave and the laminar boundary layer on a flat plate is presented. The boundary layer equations coupled with the Prandtl-Meyer relation for the external flow are used to calculate the flow field. A method for the calculation of the separated flow region is presented and discussed. Comparisons between this theory and the experimental results of other investigators show fairly good agreement. Results are presented for the case of a cooled wall with an oncoming flow at Mach number 2.0 without and with suction. The results show that a small amount of suction greatly reduces the extent of the separated region in the vicinity of the shock impingement location.

  20. Shear wave velocity structure in the lithosphere and asthenosphere across the Southern California continent and Pacific plate margin using inversion of Rayleigh wave data from the ALBACORE project.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Price, A. C.; Weeraratne, D. S.; Kohler, M. D.; Rathnayaka, S.; Escobar, L., Sr.

    2015-12-01

    The North American and Pacific plate boundary is a unique example of past subduction of an oceanic spreading center which has involved oceanic plate capture and inception of a continental transform boundary that juxtaposes continental and oceanic lithosphere on a single plate. The amphibious ALBACORE seismic project (Asthenospheric and Lithospheric Broadband Architecture from the California Offshore Region Experiment) deployed 34 ocean bottom seismometers (OBS) on 15-35 Ma seafloor and offers a unique opportunity to compare the LAB in continental and oceanic lithosphere in one seismic study. Rayleigh waves were recorded simultaneously by our offshore array and 82 CISN network land stations from 2010-2011. Here we predict phase velocities for a starting shear wave velocity model for each of 5 regions in our study area and compare to observed phase velocities from our array in a least-squares sense that produces the best fit 1-D shear wave velocity structure for each region. Preliminary results for the deep ocean (seafloor 25-32 Ma) indicates high velocities reaching 4.5 km/s at depths of 50 km associated with the lithosphere for seafloor 25-32 Ma. A negative velocity gradient is observed below this which reaches a minimum of 4.0 km/s at 160 km depth. The mid-ocean region (age 13-25 Ma) indicates a slightly lower magnitude and shallower LVZ. The Inner Borderland displays the highest lithospheric velocities offshore reaching 4.8 km/s at 40 km depth indicating underplating. The base of the LVZ in the Borderland increases sharply from 4.0 km/s to 4.5 km/s at 80-150 km depth indicating partial melt and compositional changes. The LVZ displays a very gradual positive velocity gradient in all other regions such as the deep seafloor and continent reaching 4.5 km/s at 300 km depth. The deep ocean, Borderlands, and continental region each have unique lithospheric velocities, LAB depths, and LVZ character that indicate stark differences in mantle structure that occur on a

  1. Effects of Periodic Unsteady Wake Flow and Pressure Gradient on Boundary Layer Transition Along the Concave Surface of a Curved Plate. Part 3

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schobeiri, M. T.; Radke, R. E.

    1996-01-01

    Boundary layer transition and development on a turbomachinery blade is subjected to highly periodic unsteady turbulent flow, pressure gradient in longitudinal as well as lateral direction, and surface curvature. To study the effects of periodic unsteady wakes on the concave surface of a turbine blade, a curved plate was utilized. On the concave surface of this plate, detailed experimental investigations were carried out under zero and negative pressure gradient. The measurements were performed in an unsteady flow research facility using a rotating cascade of rods positioned upstream of the curved plate. Boundary layer measurements using a hot-wire probe were analyzed by the ensemble-averaging technique. The results presented in the temporal-spatial domain display the transition and further development of the boundary layer, specifically the ensemble-averaged velocity and turbulence intensity. As the results show, the turbulent patches generated by the wakes have different leading and trailing edge velocities and merge with the boundary layer resulting in a strong deformation and generation of a high turbulence intensity core. After the turbulent patch has totally penetrated into the boundary layer, pronounced becalmed regions were formed behind the turbulent patch and were extended far beyond the point they would occur in the corresponding undisturbed steady boundary layer.

  2. Deformation across the Pacific-North America plate boundary near San Francisco, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Prescott, W.H.; Savage, J.C.; Svarc, J.L.; Manaker, D.

    2001-01-01

    We have detected a narrow zone of compression between the Coast Ranges and the Great Valley, and we have estimated slip rates for the San Andreas, Rodgers Creek, and Green Valley faults just north of San Francisco. These results are based on an analysis of campaign and continuous Global Positioning System (GPS) data collected between 1992 and 2000 in central California. The zone of compression between the Coast Ranges and the Great Valley is 25 km wide. The observations clearly show 3.8??1.5 mm yr-1 of shortening over this narrow zone. The strike slip components are best fit by a model with 20.8??1.9 mm yr-1 slip on the San Andreas fault, 10.3??2.6 mm yr-1 on the Rodgers Creek fault, and 8.1??2.1 mm yr-1 on the Green Valley fault. The Pacific-Sierra Nevada-Great Valley motion totals 39.2??3.8 mm yr-1 across a zone that is 120 km wide (at the latitude of San Francisco). Standard deviations are one ??. The geodetic results suggest a higher than geologic rate for the Green Valley fault. The geodetic results also suggest an inconsistency between geologic estimates of the San Andreas rate and seismologic estimates of the depth of locking on the San Andreas fault. The only convergence observed is in the narrow zone along the border between the Great Valley and the Coast Ranges.

  3. Inverse methods-based estimation of plate coupling in a plate motion model governed by mantle flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ratnaswamy, V.; Stadler, G.; Gurnis, M.

    2013-12-01

    Plate motion is primarily controlled by buoyancy (slab pull) which occurs at convergent plate margins where oceanic plates undergo deformation near the seismogenic zone. Yielding within subducting plates, lateral variations in viscosity, and the strength of seismic coupling between plate margins likely have an important control on plate motion. Here, we wish to infer the inter-plate coupling for different subduction zones, and develop a method for inferring it as a PDE-constrained optimization problem, where the cost functional is the misfit in plate velocities and is constrained by the nonlinear Stokes equation. The inverse models have well resolved slabs, plates, and plate margins in addition to a power law rheology with yielding in the upper mantle. Additionally, a Newton method is used to solve the nonlinear Stokes equation with viscosity bounds. We infer plate boundary strength using an inexact Gauss-Newton method with line search for backtracking. Each inverse model is applied to two simple 2-D scenarios (each with three subduction zones), one with back-arc spreading and one without. For each case we examine the sensitivity of the inversion to the amount of surface velocity used: 1) full surface velocity data and 2) surface velocity data simplified using a single scalar average (2-D equivalent to an Euler pole) for each plate. We can recover plate boundary strength in each case, even in the presence of highly nonlinear flow with extreme variations in viscosity. Additionally, we ascribe an uncertainty in each plate's velocity and perform an uncertainty quantification (UQ) through the Hessian of the misfit in plate velocities. We find that as plate boundaries become strongly coupled, the uncertainty in the inferred plate boundary strength decreases. For very weak, uncoupled subduction zones, the uncertainty of inferred plate margin strength increases since there is little sensitivity between plate margin strength and plate velocity. This result is significant

  4. Present-day kinematics of the Rivera plate and implications for tectonics in southwestern Mexico

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Demets, Charles; Stein, Seth

    1990-01-01

    A model for the present-day motion of the Rivera plate relative to the North America, Cocos, and Pacific plates is derived using new data from the Pacific-Rivera rise and Rivera transform fault, together with new estimates of Pacific-Rivera motions. The results are combined with the closure-consistent NUVEL-1 global plate motion model of DeMets et al. (1990) to examine present-day deformation in southwestern Mexico. The analysis addresses several questions raised in previous studies of the Rivera plate. Namely, do plate motion data from the northern East Pacific rise require a distinct Rivera plate? Do plate kinematic data require the subduction of the Rivera plate along the seismically quiescent Acapulco trench? If so, what does the predicted subduction rate imply about the earthquake recurrence interval in the Jalisco region of southwestern Mexico?

  5. Geographic information system (GIS) compilation of geophysical, geologic, and tectonic data for the Circum-North Pacific

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Greninger, Mark L.; Klemperer, Simon L.; Nokleberg, Warren J.

    1999-01-01

    The accompanying directory structure contains a Geographic Information Systems (GIS) compilation of geophysical, geological, and tectonic data for the Circum-North Pacific. This area includes the Russian Far East, Alaska, the Canadian Cordillera, linking continental shelves, and adjacent oceans. This GIS compilation extends from 120?E to 115?W, and from 40?N to 80?N. This area encompasses: (1) to the south, the modern Pacific plate boundary of the Japan-Kuril and Aleutian subduction zones, the Queen Charlotte transform fault, and the Cascadia subduction zone; (2) to the north, the continent-ocean transition from the Eurasian and North American continents to the Arctic Ocean; (3) to the west, the diffuse Eurasian-North American plate boundary, including the probable Okhotsk plate; and (4) to the east, the Alaskan-Canadian Cordilleran fold belt. This compilation should be useful for: (1) studying the Mesozoic and Cenozoic collisional and accretionary tectonics that assembled this continental crust of this region; (2) studying the neotectonics of active and passive plate margins in this region; and (3) constructing and interpreting geophysical, geologic, and tectonic models of the region. Geographic Information Systems (GIS) programs provide powerful tools for managing and analyzing spatial databases. Geological applications include regional tectonics, geophysics, mineral and petroleum exploration, resource management, and land-use planning. This CD-ROM contains thematic layers of spatial data-sets for geology, gravity field, magnetic field, oceanic plates, overlap assemblages, seismology (earthquakes), tectonostratigraphic terranes, topography, and volcanoes. The GIS compilation can be viewed, manipulated, and plotted with commercial software (ArcView and ArcInfo) or through a freeware program (ArcExplorer) that can be downloaded from http://www.esri.com for both Unix and Windows computers using the button below.

  6. An integral wall model for Large Eddy Simulation (iWMLES) and applications to developing boundary layers over smooth and rough plates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Xiang; Sadique, Jasim; Mittal, Rajat; Meneveau, Charles

    2014-11-01

    A new wall model for Large-Eddy-Simulations is proposed. It is based on an integral boundary layer method that assumes a functional form for the local mean velocity profile. The method, iWMLES, evaluates required unsteady and advective terms in the vertically integrated boundary layer equations analytically. The assumed profile contains a viscous or roughness sublayer, and a logarithmic layer with an additional linear term accounting for inertial and pressure gradient effects. The iWMLES method is tested in the context of a finite difference LES code. Test cases include developing turbulent boundary layers on a smooth flat plate at various Reynolds numbers, over flat plates with unresolved roughness, and a sample application to boundary layer flow over a plate that includes resolved roughness elements. The elements are truncated cones acting as idealized barnacle-like roughness elements that often occur in biofouling of marine surfaces. Comparisons with data show that iWMLES provides accurate predictions of near-wall velocity profiles in LES while, similarly to equilibrium wall models, its cost remains independent of Reynolds number and is thus significantly lower compared to standard zonal or hybrid wall models. This work is funded by ONR Grant N00014-12-1-0582 (Dr. R. Joslin, program manager).

  7. BOLIVAR: the Caribbean-South America plate boundary between 60W and 71W as imaged by seismic reflection data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Magnani, M.; Mann, P.; Clark, S. A.; Escalona, A.; Zelt, C. A.; Christeson, G. L.; Levander, A.

    2007-12-01

    We present the results of ~6000km of marine multi-channel seismic (MCS) reflection data collected offshore Venezuela as part of the Broadband Ocean Land Investigation of Venezuela and the Antilles arc Region project (BOLIVAR). The imaged area spans almost 12 degrees of longitude and 5 degrees of latitude and encompasses the diffuse plate boundary between South America (SA) and the SE Caribbean plate (CAR). This plate boundary has been evolving for at least the past 55My when the volcanic island arc that borders the CAR plate started colliding obliquely with the SA continent: the collision front has migrated from west to east. BOLIVAR MCS data show that the crustal architecture of the present plate boundary is dominated by the eastward motion of the Caribbean plate with respect to SA and is characterized by a complex combination of convergent and strike-slip tectonics. To the north, the reflection data image the South Caribbean Deformed Belt (SCDB) and the structures related to the thrusting of the CAR plate under the Leeward Antilles volcanic arc region. The data show that the CAR underthrusting continues as far east as the southern edge of the Aves ridge and detailed stratigraphic dating of the Venezuela basin and trench deposits suggests that the collision began in the Paleogene. The amount of shortening along the SCDB decreases toward the east, in part due to the geometry of plate motion vectors and in part as a result of the NNE escape of the Maracaibo block in western Venezuela. South of the SCDB the MCS profiles cross the Leeward Antilles island arc and Cenozoic sedimentary basins, revealing a complex history of Paleogene-Neogene multiphase extension, compression, and tectonic inversion, as well as the influence of the tectonic activity along the right-lateral El Pilar - San Sebastian fault system. East of the Bonaire basin the MCS data image the southern end of the Aves Ridge abandoned volcanic island arc and the southwestern termination of the Grenada basin

  8. Relaxation of an unsteady turbulent boundary layer on a flat plate in an expansion tube

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gurta, R. N.; Trimpi, R. L.

    1974-01-01

    An analysis is presented for the relaxation of a turbulent boundary layer on a semi-infinite flat plate after passage of a shock wave and a trailing driver gas-driven gas interface. The problem has special application to expansion-tube flows. The flow-governing equations have been transformed into the Crocco variables, and a time-similar solution is presented in terms of the dimensionless distance-time variable alpha and the dimensionless velocity variable beta. An eddy-viscosity model, similar to that of time-steady boundary layers, is applied to the inner and outer regions of the boundary layer. A turbulent Prandtl number equal to the molecular Prandtl number is used to relate the turbulent heat flux to the eddy viscosity. The numerical results, obtained by using the Gauss-Seidel line-relaxation method, indicate that a fully turbulent boundary layer relaxes faster to the final steady-state values of heat transfer and skin friction than a laminar boundary layer. The results also give a fairly good estimate of the local skin friction and heat transfer for near steady-flow conditions.

  9. Direct simulation of flat-plate boundary layer with mild free-stream turbulence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Xiaohua; Moin, Parviz

    2014-11-01

    Spatially evolving direct numerical simulation of the flat-plate boundary layer has been performed. The momentum thickness Reynolds number develops from 80 to 3000 with a free-stream turbulence intensity decaying from 3 percent to 0.8 percent. Predicted skin-friction is in agreement with the Blasius solution prior to breakdown, follows the well-known T3A bypass transition data during transition, and agrees with the Erm and Joubert Melbourne wind-tunnel data after the completion of transition. We introduce the concept of bypass transition in the narrow sense. Streaks, although present, do not appear to be dynamically important during the present bypass transition as they occur downstream of infant turbulent spots. For the turbulent boundary layer, viscous scaling collapses the rate of dissipation profiles in the logarithmic region at different Reynolds numbers. The ratio of Taylor microscale and the Kolmogorov length scale is nearly constant over a large portion of the outer layer. The ratio of large-eddy characteristic length and the boundary layer thickness scales very well with Reynolds number. The turbulent boundary layer is also statistically analyzed using frequency spectra, conditional-sampling, and two-point correlations. Near momentum thickness Reynolds number of 2900, three layers of coherent vortices are observed: the upper and lower layers are distinct hairpin forests of large and small sizes respectively; the middle layer consists of mostly fragmented hairpin elements.

  10. Plate-boundary kinematics in the Alps: Motion in the Arosa suture zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ring, Uwe; Ratschbacher, Lothar; Frisch, Wolfgang

    1988-08-01

    The Arosa zone forms a melange complex along the Penninic/Austroalpine boundary and belongs to the main Alpine suture zone. Accretion and plate collision occurred during Cretaceous and lower Tertiary time. A mixture of ophiolitic rocks and pelagic sediments is imbricated with flysch and blocks of Austroalpine (continental) derivation. We present a description of deformation structures, an analysis of strain, and a kinematic interpretation based on structural work. Deformation histories of imbricates show a translation path that was west-directed between ca. 110 and 50 Ma and north-directed thereafter. The kinematics of the Arosa zone agrees with the recently deduced displacement history of the Austroalpine units in the Eastern Alps during the Cretaceous orogeny. This calls for a predominantly top-to-the-west imbrication of Austroalpine and Penninic units and is in contradiction to what is inferred in most models of the Eastern Alps. A direct relation between the deformation along the Austroalpine margin and relative plate motion existed.

  11. A preliminary investigation of boundary-layer transition along a flat plate with adverse pressure gradient

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Von Doenhoff, Albert E

    1938-01-01

    Boundary-layer surveys were made throughout the transition region along a smooth flat plate placed in an airstream of practically zero turbulence and with an adverse pressure gradient. The boundary-layer Reynolds number at the laminar separation point was varied from 1,800 to 2,600. The test data, when considered in the light of certain theoretical deductions, indicated that transition probably began with separation of the laminar boundary layer. The extent of the transition region, defined as the distance from a calculated laminar separation point to the position of the first fully developed turbulent boundary-layer profile, could be expressed as a constant Reynolds number run of approximately 70,000. Some speculations are presented concerning the application of the foregoing concepts, after certain assumptions have been made, to the problem of the connection between transition on the upper surface of an airfoil at high angles of attack and the maximum lift.

  12. The effect of plate-scale rheology and plate interactions on intraplate seismicity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    So, Byung-Dal; Capitanio, Fabio A.

    2017-11-01

    We use finite element modeling to investigate on the stress loading-unloading cycles and earthquakes occurrence in the plate interiors, resulting from the interactions of tectonic plates along their boundary. We model a visco-elasto-plastic plate embedding a single or multiple faults, while the tectonic stress is applied along the plate boundary by an external loading visco-elastic plate, reproducing the tectonic setting of two interacting lithospheres. Because the two plates deform viscously, the timescale of stress accumulation and release on the faults is self-consistently determined, from the boundary to the interiors, and seismic recurrence is an emerging feature. This approach overcomes the constraints on recurrence period imposed by stress (stress-drop) and velocity boundary conditions, while here it is unconstrained. We illustrate emerging macroscopic characteristics of this system, showing that the seismic recurrence period τ becomes shorter as Γ and Θ decreases, where Γ =ηI /ηL, the viscosity ratio of the viscosities of the internal fault-embedded to external loading plates, respectively, and Θ =σY /σL the stress ratio of the elastic limit of the fault to far-field loading stress. When the system embeds multiple, randomly distributed faults, stress transfer results in recurrence period deviations, however the time-averaged recurrence period of each fault show the same dependence on Γ and Θ, illustrating a characteristic collective behavior. The control of these parameters prevails even when initial pre-stress was randomly assigned in terms of the spatial arrangement and orientation on the internal plate, mimicking local fluctuations. Our study shows the relevance of macroscopic rheological properties of tectonic plates on the earthquake occurrence in plate interiors, as opposed to local factors, proposing a viable model for the seismic behavior of continent interiors in the context of large-scale, long-term deformation of interacting tectonic

  13. Record of the Pacific Large Low Shear Velocity Province Upwellings Preserved in the Cretaceous Large Igneous Provinces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Madrigal, P.; Gazel, E.; Flores, K. E.; Bizimis, M.; Jicha, B. R.

    2015-12-01

    As the surface expression of deep mantle dynamics, Large Igneous Provinces (LIPs) are associated with the edges of large low shear velocity provinces (LLSVP) rooted at the core-mantle boundary. Instabilities in the LLSVP can cause periodic upwellings of material in the form of mantle plumes, which impact the lithosphere forming LIPs. However, the time frames of these massive lava outpourings are still uncertain. While continental LIPs are more readily accessible, oceanic LIPs have only been studied through drilling and sampling of fragments accreted to continental margins or island arcs, hence, they are relatively less understood. The impact of oceanic LIPs on oceanic biota is conspicuously recorded in global occurrences of black shale deposits that evidence episodes of anoxia and mass extinctions shortly after the formation of LIPs that ultimately can affect life on the entire planet. Our new geochemical and geochronological data of accreted Pacific LIPs found in the coasts of Nicoya Peninsula in Costa Rica record three LIP pulses possibly reflecting upwelling periods of the LLSVP at 140, 120 and 90 Ma. In order to test different models of origin of these LIPS, we created a complete reconstruction of the Pacific Plate configuration from the Mid-Jurassic to Upper-Cretaceous to show the existing correlation between upwelling pulses at edges of the Pacific LLSVP, oceanic anoxic events and the age from Pacific LIPs. We propose that since the formation of the Pacific plate at circa 175-180 Ma, a series of upwellings that interacted with mid-ocean ridge systems separated by 10-20 Ma have affected the planet periodically forming oceanic LIPs that still can be found today on the Pacific seafloor and accreted along the plate margins.

  14. MHD Free Convective Boundary Layer Flow of a Nanofluid past a Flat Vertical Plate with Newtonian Heating Boundary Condition

    PubMed Central

    Uddin, Mohammed J.; Khan, Waqar A.; Ismail, Ahmed I.

    2012-01-01

    Steady two dimensional MHD laminar free convective boundary layer flows of an electrically conducting Newtonian nanofluid over a solid stationary vertical plate in a quiescent fluid taking into account the Newtonian heating boundary condition is investigated numerically. A magnetic field can be used to control the motion of an electrically conducting fluid in micro/nano scale systems used for transportation of fluid. The transport equations along with the boundary conditions are first converted into dimensionless form and then using linear group of transformations, the similarity governing equations are developed. The transformed equations are solved numerically using the Runge-Kutta-Fehlberg fourth-fifth order method with shooting technique. The effects of different controlling parameters, namely, Lewis number, Prandtl number, buoyancy ratio, thermophoresis, Brownian motion, magnetic field and Newtonian heating on the flow and heat transfer are investigated. The numerical results for the dimensionless axial velocity, temperature and nanoparticle volume fraction as well as the reduced Nusselt and Sherwood number have been presented graphically and discussed. It is found that the rate of heat and mass transfer increase as Newtonian heating parameter increases. The dimensionless velocity and temperature distributions increase with the increase of Newtonian heating parameter. The results of the reduced heat transfer rate is compared for convective heating boundary condition and found an excellent agreement. PMID:23166688

  15. Precise relative locations for earthquakes in the northeast Pacific region

    DOE PAGES

    Cleveland, K. Michael; VanDeMark, Thomas F.; Ammon, Charles J.

    2015-10-09

    We report that double-difference methods applied to cross-correlation measured Rayleigh wave time shifts are an effective tool to improve epicentroid locations and relative origin time shifts in remote regions. We apply these methods to seismicity offshore of southwestern Canada and the U.S. Pacific Northwest, occurring along the boundaries of the Pacific and Juan de Fuca (including the Explorer Plate and Gorda Block) Plates. The Blanco, Mendocino, Revere-Dellwood, Nootka, and Sovanco fracture zones host the majority of this seismicity, largely consisting of strike-slip earthquakes. The Explorer, Juan de Fuca, and Gorda spreading ridges join these fracture zones and host normal faultingmore » earthquakes. Our results show that at least the moderate-magnitude activity clusters along fault strike, supporting suggestions of large variations in seismic coupling along oceanic transform faults. Our improved relative locations corroborate earlier interpretations of the internal deformation in the Explorer and Gorda Plates. North of the Explorer Plate, improved locations support models that propose northern extension of the Revere-Dellwood fault. Relocations also support interpretations that favor multiple parallel active faults along the Blanco Transform Fault Zone. Seismicity of the western half of the Blanco appears more scattered and less collinear than the eastern half, possibly related to fault maturity. We use azimuthal variations in the Rayleigh wave cross-correlation amplitude to detect and model rupture directivity for a moderate size earthquake along the eastern Blanco Fault. Lastly, the observations constrain the seismogenic zone geometry and suggest a relatively narrow seismogenic zone width of 2 to 4 km.« less

  16. Polynomial decay rate of a thermoelastic Mindlin-Timoshenko plate model with Dirichlet boundary conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grobbelaar-Van Dalsen, Marié

    2015-02-01

    In this article, we are concerned with the polynomial stabilization of a two-dimensional thermoelastic Mindlin-Timoshenko plate model with no mechanical damping. The model is subject to Dirichlet boundary conditions on the elastic as well as the thermal variables. The work complements our earlier work in Grobbelaar-Van Dalsen (Z Angew Math Phys 64:1305-1325, 2013) on the polynomial stabilization of a Mindlin-Timoshenko model in a radially symmetric domain under Dirichlet boundary conditions on the displacement and thermal variables and free boundary conditions on the shear angle variables. In particular, our aim is to investigate the effect of the Dirichlet boundary conditions on all the variables on the polynomial decay rate of the model. By once more applying a frequency domain method in which we make critical use of an inequality for the trace of Sobolev functions on the boundary of a bounded, open connected set we show that the decay is slower than in the model considered in the cited work. A comparison of our result with our polynomial decay result for a magnetoelastic Mindlin-Timoshenko model subject to Dirichlet boundary conditions on the elastic variables in Grobbelaar-Van Dalsen (Z Angew Math Phys 63:1047-1065, 2012) also indicates a correlation between the robustness of the coupling between parabolic and hyperbolic dynamics and the polynomial decay rate in the two models.

  17. An intraslab earthquake (M7.1) along a buried hydrated fault in the Pacific plate, triggered by the 2011 M9 Tohoku earthquake

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakajima, J.; Hasegawa, A.; Kita, S.

    2011-12-01

    A M9.0 megathrust earthquake, the 2011 off the Pacific Coast of Tohoku Earthquake, occurred on 11 March 2011 on the plate boundary east off northeastern (NE) Japan. After this great earthquake, seismicity has been activated in the Pacific plate as well as along its upper surface, and a large earthquake (M7.1) occurred on April 7 in the Pacific slab at a depth of 66 km, located near the down-dip limit of the large interplate slip of the M9 event. Here we perform travel-time tomography to reveal heterogeneous seismic velocity structures around the focal area of the 2011 M7.1 intraslab event, and discuss the occurrence of the 2011 M7.1 event in terms of dehydration embrittlement hypothesis. We applied the double-difference tomography method (Zhang and Thurber, 2003) to large number of arrival-time data obtained at a nation-wide seismograph network in Japan. Arrival-time data were produced from 8911 earthquakes and 188 stations, and comprised 247,504 P waves and 196,057 S waves, with differential data of 1,608,230 for P waves and 1,114,068 for S waves. Grid intervals were set at 10-20 km in the along-arc direction, 5-10 km perpendicular to the arc, and 5-10 km in the vertical direction The final results were obtained after eight iterations, which reduced the travel-time residual from 0.17 s to 0.11 s for P waves, and from 0.33 s to 0.19 s for S waves. The results show a low-velocity zone around the focal area of the M7.1 event, and that the aftershock activity is limited to the upper 15 km of the oceanic mantle. The lateral extent of the low-velocity zone is comparable to the distribution of aftershocks, suggesting a concentration of fluids in the aftershock area. The angle between the aftershock alignment and the dip of the slab surface is estimated to be ~60°, which is consistent with the dip of an oceanward-dipping normal fault observed at the outer-trench slope. These observations suggest that the M7.1 intraslab event occurred as a result of reactivation of a

  18. Crustal and upper mantle investigations of the Caribbean-South American plate boundary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bezada, Maximiliano J.

    The evolution of the Caribbean --- South America plate boundary has been a matter of vigorous debate for decades and many questions remain unresolved. In this work, and in the framework of the BOLIVAR project, we shed light on some aspects of the present state and the tectonic history of the margin by using different types of geophysical data sets and techniques. An analysis of controlled-source traveltime data collected along a boundary-normal profile at ˜65°W was used to build a 2D P-wave velocity model. The model shows that the Caribbean Large Igenous Province is present offshore eastern Venezuela and confirms the uniformity of the velocity structure along the Leeward Antilles volcanic belt. In contrast with neighboring profiles, at this longitude we see no change in velocity structure or crustal thickness across the San Sebastian - El Pilar fault system. A 2D gravity modeling methodology that uses seismically derived initial density models was developed as part of this research. The application of this new method to four of the BOLIVAR boundary-normal profiles suggests that the uppermost mantle is denser under the South American continental crust and the island arc terranes than under the Caribbean oceanic crust. Crustal rocks of the island arc and extended island arc terranes of the Leeward Antilles have a relatively low density, given their P-wave velocity. This may be caused by low iron content, relative to average magmatic arc rocks. Finally, an analysis of teleseismic traveltimes with frequency-dependent kernels produced a 3D P-wave velocity perturbation model. The model shows the structure of the mantle lithosphere under the study area and clearly images the subduction of the Atlantic slab and associated partial removal of the lower lithosphere under northern South America. We also image the subduction of a section of the Caribbean plate under South America with an east-southeast direction. Both the Atlantic and Caribbean subducting slabs penetrate the

  19. 3D Thermal/Mechanical Evolution Of The Plate Boundary Corner In SE Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barker, A.; Koons, P.; Upton, P.; Pavlis, T.; Chapman, J.

    2007-12-01

    The St Elias orogen of southeast Alaska forms part of an actively deforming plate boundary corner. The corner accommodates the transition from a strike-slip lateral boundary to a convergent normal boundary. Oblique convergence of the Yakutat microplate into the corner generates early stage tectonic characteristics associated with other corner systems (e.g. Himalayan Eastern Syntaxis). In combination with the high relief, the extreme erosive processes of the region redistribute crustal material, partition tectonic strain, and influence the advection of deep crustal material. The evolution of the convergent corner is investigated using 3D numerical models and sandbox analog models. Preliminary model results indicate the deformation partitions into a narrow two-sided orogen along the lateral boundary. The pattern transitions into a wider zone of shortening bounded by inboard and outboard directed thrusts along the frontal boundary. The inclusion of erosion boundary conditions leads to nascent tectonic aneurysm behavior, involving increased strain localization and focused vertical advection of deep crustal material. Thermal models, using the 3D velocity field from these mechanical solutions, show a vertical deflection (towards the surface) of isotherms beneath the eroding region. Sensitivity of the aneurysm behavior is related to the efficiency of the imposed erosion rate (i.e. greater erosion rates led to greater bedrock uplift rates). Higher erosion rates are localized within zones containing major glacier systems in SE Alaska: Bering Glacier, Bagley Icefield, Malaspina Glacier, and Seward Glacier. Combined thermal/mechanical solutions identify the glacier valleys as rheological weakspots, defined by localized strain and differential advection of deep crustal material.

  20. True Polar Wander and Hotspot Fixity: A Paleomagnetic Investigation of the Skewness of Magnetic Anomaly 12r (32 Ma B.P.) on the Pacific Plate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gordon, R. G.; Horner-Johnson, B. C.

    2010-12-01

    Prior studies have shown that Pacific hotspots and Indo-Atlantic hotspots have moved in approximate unison relative to the spin axis since 65 Ma B.P. [Morgan, 1981; Gordon and Cape, 1981; Gordon, 1982] and since 56 Ma B.P. [Petronotis et al., 1994], which is most simply interpreted as true polar wander. In contrast, Pacific hotspots and Indo-Atlantic hotspots give conflicting results for 72 Ma B.P. and for 81 Ma B.P., which may indicate motion between Pacific hotspots and Indo-Atlantic hotspots [Tarduno and Cottrell, 1997; Petronotis et al., 1999; Tarduno et al., 2003]. Thus it is important to estimate Pacific plate apparent polar wander (APW) for more time intervals. From such estimates the APW of Pacific hotspots can be inferred and compared with that of Indo-Atlantic hotspots [e.g., Besse and Courtillot 2002]. Here we present a study of the skewness of anomaly 12r between the Galapagos and Clipperton and between the Clipperton and Clarion fracture zones. We chose this region for several reasons: First, numerical experiments, like those conducted by Acton and Gordon [1991], indicate that magnetic profiles between the Galapagos and Clarion fracture zones should contain the most information about the Pacific plate paleomagnetic pole for chron C12r (32 Ma B.P.). Second, in these two spreading rate corridors, spreading half rates range from 72 to 86 mm/a and therefore have negligible anomalous skewness, given that they exceed ≈50 mm/a [Roest et al., 1992; Dyment et al. 1994]. Third, vector aeromagnetic profiles are available for analysis. One of the challenges to interpreting magnetic anomalies in low latitudes where the anomalies strike nearly north-south is the very low amplitude of the signal relative to the noise, the latter of which can be especially intense near the present magnetic equator due to the amplification of diurnal variation by the equatorial electrojet. Previously we showed that vector aeromagnetic profiles record low-latitude Pacific plate

  1. Subduction history of the Paleo-Pacific plate beneath the Eurasian continent: Evidence from Mesozoic igneous rocks and accretionary complex in NE Asia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, W.

    2015-12-01

    Mesozoic magmatisms in NE China can be subdivided into seven stages, i.e., Late Triassic, Early Jurassic, Middle Jurassic, Late Jurassic, early Early Cretaceous, late Early Cretaceous, and Late Cretaceous. Late Triassic magmatisms consist of calc-alkaline igneous rocks in the Erguna Massif, and bimodal igneous rocks in eastern margin of Eurasian continent. The former reveals southward subduction of the Mongol-Okhotsk oceanic plate, the latter reveals an extensional environment (Xu et al., 2013). Early Jurassic magmatisms are composed of calc-alkaline igneous rocks in the eastern margin of the Eurasian continent and the Erguna Massif, revealing westward subduction of the Paleo-pacific plate and southward subduction of the Mongol-Okhotsk oceanic plate (Tang et al., 2015), respectively. Middle Jurassic magmatism only occur in the Great Xing'an Range and the northern margin of the NCC, and consists of adakitic rocks that formed in crustal thickening, reflecting the closure of the Mongol-Okhotsk ocean (Li et al., 2015). Late Jurassic and early Early Cretaceous magmatisms only occur to the west of the Songliao Basin, and consist of trackyandesite and A-type of rhyolites, revealing an extensional environment related to delamination of thickened crust. The late Early Cretaceous magmatisms are widespread in NE China, and consist of calc-alkaline volcanics in eastern margin and bimodal volcanics in intracontinent, revealing westward subduction of the Paleo-pacific plate. Late Cretaceous magmatisms mainly occur to the east of the Songliao Basin, and consist of calc-alkaline volcanics in eastern margin and alkaline basalts in intracontinent (Xu et al., 2013), revealing westward subduction of the Paleo-pacific plate. The Heilongjiang complex with Early Jurassic deformation, together with Jurassic Khabarovsk complex in Russia Far East and Mino-Tamba complex in Japan, reveal Early Jurassic accretionary history. Additionally, the Raohe complex with the age of ca. 169 Ma was

  2. Plate tectonic constraints on the cessation of subduction beneath the Baja California peninsula, Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stock, J. M.

    2007-05-01

    I review published models, existing global plate tectonic data and published marine geophysical observations west of Baja California to assess the timing and conditions under which subduction ceased along the W margin of Baja California. The relative motion of the Farallon microplate fragments can be reconstructed using Pacific- North America global plate motions (from the Pacific-Antarctica-Nubia-North America plate circuit) added to the local velocities of the microplates with respect to the Pacific plate. Because the Pacific plate was moving obliquely away from North America, the time at which subduction stopped has often been taken to be the time at which the microplates joined the Pacific plate (the ages of dead spreading centers preserved west of North America on the Pacific plate). The timing of cessation of subduction west of what is now northern Baja California is not recorded by a dead ridge offshore but is inferred to be coincident with extension and rotation in the continental borderland (early-middle Miocene). The Arguello microplate stopped spreading relative to the Pacific plate at about 13 Ma, providing a younger age limit on the cessation of subduction in the sector N of the Shirley transform fault. The time of cessation of spreading of the Magdalena-Pacific (M-P) ridge has been proposed by Michaud et al. (2006 Geology) to be as young as 8 Ma. However, the clockwise rotation of the M-P ridge before it ceased, and its inferred slow spreading rate away from the Pacific plate implies transcurrent motion with virtually no convergence between the Magdalena microplate and the North America plate during the last stages of activity of the M-P ridge. Subduction can occur by motion of forearc fragments without any convergence of the major bounding plates (e.g., the modern South Shetland Trench), but this may be ruled out for Baja California due to the small spatial scale of the microplates compared to the scale of the stable Baja California peninsula block

  3. Flowfield measurements in a separated and reattached flat plate turbulent boundary layer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Patrick, William P.

    1987-01-01

    The separation and reattachment of a large-scale, two-dimensional turbulent boundary layer at low subsonic speed on a flat plate has been studied experimentally. The separation bubble was 55 cm long and had a maximum bubble thickness, measured to the height of the mean dividing streamline, of 17 cm, which was twice the thickness of the inlet boundary layer. A combination of laser velocimetry, hot-wire anemometry, pneumatic probing techniques, and flow visualization were used as diagnostics. Principal findings were that an outer inviscid rotational flow was defined which essentially convected over the blockage associated with the inner, viscously dominated bubble recirculation region. A strong backflow region in which the flow moved upstream 100 percent of the time was measured near the test surface over the central 35 percent of the bubble. A laminar backflow boundary layer having pseudo-turbulent characteristics including a log-linear velocity profile was generated under the highly turbulent backflow. Velocity profile shapes in the reversed flow region matched a previously developed universal backflow profile at the upstream edge of the separation region but not in the steady backflow region downstream. A smoke flow visualization movie and hot-film measurements revealed low frequency nonperiodic flapping at reattachment. However, forward flow fraction data at reattachment and mean velocity profiles in the redeveloping boundary layer downstream of reattachment correlated with backward-facing step data when the axial dimension was scaled by the distance from the maximum bubble thickness to reattachment.

  4. Linkages Between the Megathrust and Upper-plate Deformation: Lessons From the Deformational Dichotomy of the 2016 Kaikoura New Zealand Earthquake

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Furlong, K. P.; Herman, M. W.

    2017-12-01

    Following the 2016 Mw 7.8 Kaikoura earthquake, the nature of the coseismic rupture was unclear. Seismological and tsunami evidence pointed to significant involvement of the subduction megathrust, while geodetic and field observations pointed to a shallow set of intra-crustal faults as the main participants during the earthquake. It now appears that the Kaikoura earthquake produced synchronous faulting on the plate boundary subduction interface - the megathrust - and on a suite of crustal faults above the rupture zone in the overlying plate. This Kaikoura-style earthquake, involving synchronous ruptures on multiple components of the plate boundary, may be an important mode of plate boundary deformation affecting seismic hazard along subduction zones. Here we propose a model to explain how these upper-plate faults are loaded during the periods between megathrust earthquakes and subsequently can rupture synchronously with the megathrust. Between megathrust earthquakes, horizontal compression, driven by plate convergence, locks the upper-plate faults, particularly those at higher angles to the convergence direction and the oblique plate motion of the subducting Pacific plate deforms the upper-plate in bulk shear. During the time interval of megathrust rupture, two things happen which directly affect the stress conditions acting on these upper-plate faults: (1) slip on the megathrust and the associated `rebound' of the upper plate reduces the compressive or normal stress acting on the upper plate faults, and (2) the base of the upper plate faults (and the upper plate itself) is decoupled from the slab in the region above rupture area. The reduction in normal stress acting on these faults increases their Coulomb Stress state to strongly favor strike-slip fault slip, and the basal decoupling of the upper plate allows it to undergo nearly complete stress recovery in that region; enabling the occurrence of very large offsets on these faults - offsets that exceed the slip on

  5. Long-lived melting of ancient lower crust of the North China Craton in response to paleo-Pacific plate subduction, recorded by adakitic rhyolite

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Chao; Song, Shuguang; Niu, Yaoling; Allen, Mark B.; Su, Li; Wei, Chunjing; Zhang, Guibin; Fu, Bin

    2017-11-01

    Magmatism in eastern China in response to paleo-Pacific plate subduction during the Mesozoic was complex, and it is unclear how and when exactly the magmas formed via thinning and partial destruction of the continental lithosphere. To better understand this magmatism, we report the results of a geochronological and geochemical study of Early Cretaceous adakitic rhyolite (erupted at 125.4 ± 2.2 Ma) in the Xintaimen area within the eastern North China Craton (NCC). In situ zircon U-Pb dating shows that this adakitic rhyolite records a long ( 70 Myrs) and complicated period of magmatism with concordant 206Pb/238U ages from 193 Ma to 117 Ma. The enriched bulk rock Sr-Nd isotopic compositions of the Xintaimen adakitic rhyolite, as well as the enriched zircon Hf and O isotopic compositions, indicate that the magmas parental to the adakitic rhyolite were derived from partial melting of the Paleoproterozoic mafic lower crust, heated by mafic melts derived from the mantle during the paleo-Pacific plate subduction. A minor older basement component is indicated by the presence of captured Neoarchean to Early Paleoproterozoic zircons. The Mesozoic zircons have restricted Hf and O isotopic compositions irrespective of their ages, suggesting that they formed from similar sources at similar melting conditions. The Xintaimen adakitic rhyolite offers an independent line of evidence that the ancient lower crust of eastern China underwent a long period ( 70 Myrs) of destruction, melting or remelting, from 193 to 120 Ma, related to the subduction of the paleo-Pacific plate beneath eastern China.

  6. Abbot Ice Shelf, the Amundsen Sea Continental Margin and the Southern Boundary of the Bellingshausen Plate Seaward of West Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cochran, J. R.; Tinto, K. J.; Bell, R. E.

    2014-12-01

    The Abbot Ice Shelf extends 450 km along the coast of West Antarctica between 103°W and 89°W and straddles the boundary between the Bellingshausen Sea continental margin, which overlies a former subduction zone, and Amundsen Sea rifted continental margin. Inversion of NASA Operation IceBridge airborne gravity data for sub-ice bathymetry shows that the western part of the ice shelf, as well as Cosgrove Ice Shelf to the south, are underlain by a series of east-west trending rift basins. The eastern boundary of the rifted terrain coincides with the eastern boundary of rifting between Antarctica and Zealandia and the rifts formed during the early stages of this rifting. Extension in these rifts is minor as rifting quickly jumped north of Thurston Island. The southern boundary of the Cosgrove Rift is aligned with the southern boundary of a sedimentary basin under the Amundsen Embayment continental shelf to the west, also formed by Antarctica-Zealandia rifting. The shelf basin has an extension factor, β, of 1.5 - 1.7 with 80 -100 km of extension occurring in an area now ~250 km wide. Following this extension early in the rifting process, rifting centered to the north of the present shelf edge and proceeded to continental rupture. Since then, the Amundsen Embayment continental shelf has been tectonically quiescent and has primarily been shaped though subsidence, sedimentation and the passage of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet back and forth across it. The former Bellingshausen Plate was located seaward of the Amundsen Sea margin prior to its incorporation into the Antarctic Plate at ~62 Ma. During the latter part of its existence, Bellingshausen plate motion had a clockwise rotational component relative to Antarctica producing convergence between the Bellingshausen and Antarctic plates east of 102°W. Seismic reflection and gravity data show that this convergence is expressed by an area of intensely deformed sediments beneath the continental slope from 102°W to 95°W and

  7. An unrecognized major collision of the Okhotomorsk Block with East Asia during the Late Cretaceous, constraints on the plate reorganization of the Northwest Pacific

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Yong-Tai

    2013-11-01

    Interactions at plate boundaries induce stresses that constitute critical controls on the structural evolution of intraplate regions. However, the traditional tectonic model for the East Asian margin during the Mesozoic, invoking successive episodes of paleo-Pacific oceanic subduction, does not provide an adequate context for important Late Cretaceous dynamics across East Asia, including: continental-scale orogenic processes, significant sinistral strike-slip faulting, and several others. The integration of numerous documented field relations requires a new tectonic model, as proposed here. The Okhotomorsk continental block, currently residing below the Okhotsk Sea in Northeast Asia, was located in the interior of the Izanagi Plate before the Late Cretaceous. It moved northwestward with the Izanagi Plate and collided with the South China Block at about 100 Ma. The indentation of the Okhotomorsk Block within East Asia resulted in the formation of a sinistral strike-slip fault system in South China, formation of a dextral strike-slip fault system in North China, and regional northwest-southeast shortening and orogenic uplift in East Asia. Northeast-striking mountain belts over 500 km wide extended from Southeast China to Southwest Japan and South Korea. The peak metamorphism at about 89 Ma of the Sanbagawa high-pressure metamorphic belt in Southwest Japan was probably related to the continental subduction of the Okhotomorsk Block beneath the East Asian margin. Subsequently, the north-northwestward change of motion direction of the Izanagi Plate led to the northward movement of the Okhotomorsk Block along the East Asian margin, forming a significant sinistral continental transform boundary similar to the San Andreas fault system in California. Sanbagawa metamorphic rocks in Southwest Japan were rapidly exhumed through the several-kilometer wide ductile shear zone at the lower crust and upper mantle level. Accretionary complexes successively accumulated along the East

  8. P-wave tomography of Northeast Asia: Constraints on the western Pacific plate subduction and mantle dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ma, Jincheng; Tian, You; Liu, Cai; Zhao, Dapeng; Feng, Xuan; Zhu, Hongxiang

    2018-01-01

    A high-resolution model of 3-D P-wave velocity structure beneath Northeast Asia and adjacent regions is determined by using 244,180 arrival times of 14,163 local and regional earthquakes and 319,857 relative travel-time residuals of 9988 teleseismic events recorded at ∼2100 seismic stations in the study region. Our tomographic results reveal the subducting Pacific slab clearly as a prominent high-velocity anomaly from the Japan Trench to the North-South Gravity lineament (NSGL) in East China. The NSGL is roughly coincident with the western edge of the stagnant Pacific slab in the mantle transition zone (MTZ). The subducting Pacific slab has partly sunk into the lower mantle beneath Northeast China, but under the Sino-Korean Craton the slab lies horizontally in the MTZ. The NSGL, as an important tectonic line in Mainland China, is marked by sharp differences in the surface topography, gravity anomaly, crustal and lithospheric thickness and mantle seismic velocity from the east to the west. These features of the NSGL and large-scale hot and wet upwelling in the big mantle wedge (BMW) in the east of the NSGL are all related to the subduction processes of the Western Pacific plate. The Changbai intraplate volcanic group is underlain by a striking low-velocity anomaly from the upper MTZ and the BMW up to the surface, and deep earthquakes (410-650 km depths) occur actively in the subducting Pacific slab to the east of the Changbai volcano. We propose that the Changbai volcanic group is caused by upwelling of hot and wet asthenospheric materials and active convection in the BMW. The formation of other volcanic groups in the east of the NSGL is also associated with the subduction-driven corner flow in the BMW.

  9. Slab interactions in 3-D subduction settings: The Philippine Sea Plate region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holt, Adam F.; Royden, Leigh H.; Becker, Thorsten W.; Faccenna, Claudio

    2018-05-01

    The importance of slab-slab interactions is manifested in the kinematics and geometry of the Philippine Sea Plate and western Pacific subduction zones, and such interactions offer a dynamic basis for the first-order observations in this complex subduction setting. The westward subduction of the Pacific Sea Plate changes, along-strike, from single slab subduction beneath Japan, to a double-subduction setting where Pacific subduction beneath the Philippine Sea Plate occurs in tandem with westward subduction of the Philippine Sea Plate beneath Eurasia. Our 3-D numerical models show that there are fundamental differences between single slab systems and double slab systems where both subduction systems have the same vergence. We find that the observed kinematics and slab geometry of the Pacific-Philippine subduction can be understood by considering an along-strike transition from single to double subduction, and is largely independent from the detailed geometry of the Philippine Sea Plate. Important first order features include the relatively shallow slab dip, retreating/stationary trenches, and rapid subduction for single slab systems (Pacific Plate subducting under Japan), and front slabs within a double slab system (Philippine Sea Plate subducting at Ryukyu). In contrast, steep to overturned slab dips, advancing trench motion, and slower subduction occurs for rear slabs in a double slab setting (Pacific subducting at the Izu-Bonin-Mariana). This happens because of a relative build-up of pressure in the asthenosphere beneath the Philippine Sea Plate, where the asthenosphere is constrained between the converging Ryukyu and Izu-Bonin-Mariana slabs. When weak back-arc regions are included, slab-slab convergence rates slow and the middle (Philippine) plate extends, which leads to reduced pressure build up and reduced slab-slab coupling. Models without back-arcs, or with back-arc viscosities that are reduced by a factor of five, produce kinematics compatible with present

  10. Whole-mantle convection with tectonic plates preserves long-term global patterns of upper mantle geochemistry.

    PubMed

    Barry, T L; Davies, J H; Wolstencroft, M; Millar, I L; Zhao, Z; Jian, P; Safonova, I; Price, M

    2017-05-12

    The evolution of the planetary interior during plate tectonics is controlled by slow convection within the mantle. Global-scale geochemical differences across the upper mantle are known, but how they are preserved during convection has not been adequately explained. We demonstrate that the geographic patterns of chemical variations around the Earth's mantle endure as a direct result of whole-mantle convection within largely isolated cells defined by subducting plates. New 3D spherical numerical models embedded with the latest geological paleo-tectonic reconstructions and ground-truthed with new Hf-Nd isotope data, suggest that uppermost mantle at one location (e.g. under Indian Ocean) circulates down to the core-mantle boundary (CMB), but returns within ≥100 Myrs via large-scale convection to its approximate starting location. Modelled tracers pool at the CMB but do not disperse ubiquitously around it. Similarly, mantle beneath the Pacific does not spread to surrounding regions of the planet. The models fit global patterns of isotope data and may explain features such as the DUPAL anomaly and long-standing differences between Indian and Pacific Ocean crust. Indeed, the geochemical data suggests this mode of convection could have influenced the evolution of mantle composition since 550 Ma and potentially since the onset of plate tectonics.

  11. Plane elasto-plastic analysis of v-notched plate under bending by boundary integral equation method. Ph.D. Thesis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rzasnicki, W.

    1973-01-01

    A method of solution is presented, which, when applied to the elasto-plastic analysis of plates having a v-notch on one edge and subjected to pure bending, will produce stress and strain fields in much greater detail than presently available. Application of the boundary integral equation method results in two coupled Fredholm-type integral equations, subject to prescribed boundary conditions. These equations are replaced by a system of simultaneous algebraic equations and solved by a successive approximation method employing Prandtl-Reuss incremental plasticity relations. The method is first applied to number of elasto-static problems and the results compared with available solutions. Good agreement is obtained in all cases. The elasto-plastic analysis provides detailed stress and strain distributions for several cases of plates with various notch angles and notch depths. A strain hardening material is assumed and both plane strain and plane stress conditions are considered.

  12. Stress Transfer Processes during Great Plate Boundary Thrusting Events: A Study from the Andaman and Nicobar Segments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andrade, V.; Rajendran, K.

    2010-12-01

    The response of subduction zones to large earthquakes varies along their strike, both during the interseismic and post-seismic periods. The December 26, 2004 earthquake nucleated at 3° N latitude and its rupture propagated northward, along the Andaman-Sumatra subduction zone, terminating at 15°N. Rupture speed was estimated at about 2.0 km per second in the northern part under the Andaman region and 2.5 - 2.7 km per second under southern Nicobar and North Sumatra. We have examined the pre and post-2004 seismicity to understand the stress transfer processes within the subducting plate, in the Andaman (10° - 15° N ) and Nicobar (5° - 10° N) segments. The seismicity pattern in these segments shows distinctive characteristics associated with the outer rise, accretionary prism and the spreading ridge, all of which are relatively better developed in the Andaman segment. The Ninety East ridge and the Sumatra Fault System are significant tectonic features in the Nicobar segment. The pre-2004 seismicity in both these segments conform to the steady-state conditions wherein large earthquakes are fewer and compressive stresses dominate along the plate interface. Among the pre-2004 great earthquakes are the 1881 Nicobar and 1941 Andaman events. The former is considered to be a shallow thrust event that generated a small tsunami. Studies in other subduction zones suggest that large outer-rise tensional events follow great plate boundary breaking earthquakes due to the the up-dip transfer of stresses within the subducting plate. The seismicity of the Andaman segment (1977-2004) concurs with the steady-state stress conditions where earthquakes occur dominantly by thrust faulting. The post-2004 seismicity shows up-dip migration along the plate interface, with dominance of shallow normal faulting, including a few outer rise events and some deeper (> 100 km) strike-slip faulting events within the subducting plate. The September 13, 2002, Mw 6.5 thrust faulting earthquake at

  13. Plate tectonics and crustal deformation around the Japanese Islands

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hashimoto, Manabu; Jackson, David D.

    1993-01-01

    We analyze over a century of geodetic data to study crustal deformation and plate motion around the Japanese Islands, using the block-fault model for crustal deformation developed by Matsu'ura et al. (1986). We model the area including the Japanese Islands with 19 crustal blocks and 104 faults based on the distribution of active faults and seismicity. Geodetic data are used to obtain block motions and average slip rates of faults. This geodetic model predicts that the Pacific plate moves N deg 69 +/- 2 deg W at about 80 +/- 3 mm/yr relative to the Eurasian plate which is much lower than that predicted in geologic models. Substantial aseismic slip occurs on the subduction boundaries. The block containing the Izu Peninsula may be separated from the rigid part of the Philippine Sea plate. The faults on the coast of Japan Sea and the western part of the Median Tectonic Line have slip rates exceeding 4 mm/yr, while the Fossa Magna does not play an important role in the tectonics of the central Japan. The geodetic model requires the division of northeastern Japan, contrary to the hypothesis that northeastern Japan is a part of the North American plate. Owing to rapid convergence, the seismic risk in the Nankai trough may be larger than that of the Tokai gap.

  14. The Evolution of the Earth's Mantle Structure and Surface and Core-mantle Boundary Heat Flux since the Paleozoic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, N.; Zhong, S.

    2010-12-01

    The cause for and time evolution of the seismically observed African and Pacific slow anomalies (i.e., superplumes) are still unclear with two competing proposals. First, the African and Pacific superplumes have remained largely unchanged for at least the last 300 Ma and possibly much longer. Second, the African superplume is formed sometime after the formation of Pangea (i.e., at 330 Ma ago) and the mantle in the African hemisphere is predominated by cold downwelling structures before and during the assembly of Pangea, while the Pacific superplume has been stable for the Pangea supercontinent cycle (i.e., globally a degree-1 structure before the Pangea formation). Here, we construct a plate motion history back to 450 Ma and use it as time-dependent surface boundary conditions in 3-dimensional spherical models of thermochemical mantle convection to study the evolution of mantle structure as well as the surface and core-mantle boundary heat flux. Our results for the mantle structures suggest that while the mantle in the African hemisphere before the assembly of Pangea is predominated by the cold downwelling structure resulting from plate convergence between Gondwana and Laurussia, it is unlikely that the bulk of the African superplume structure can be formed before ~240 Ma (i.e., ~100 Ma after the assembly of Pangea). The evolution of mantle structure has implications for heat flux at the surface and core-mantle boundary (CMB). Our results show that while the plate motion controls the surface heat flux, the major cold downwellings control the core-mantle boundary heat flux. A notable feature in surface heat flux from our models is that the surface heat flux peaks at ~100 Ma ago but decreases for the last 100 Ma due to the breakup of Pangea and its subsequent plate evolution. The CMB heat flux in the equatorial regions shows two minima during period 320-250 Ma and period 120-84 Ma. The first minimum clearly results from the disappearance of a major cold downwelling

  15. An analysis of the relaxation of laminar boundary layer on a flat plate after passage of an interface with application to expansion-tube flows

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gupta, R. N.

    1972-01-01

    The relaxation of the accelerating-gas boundary layer to the test-gas boundary layer over a flat plate in an expansion tube is analyzed. Several combinations of test gas and acceleration gas are considered. The problem is treated in two conically similar limits: (1) when the time lag between the arrival of the shock and the interface at the leading edge of the plate is very large, and (2) when this lag is negligible. The time-dependent laminar-boundary-layer equations of a binary mixture of perfect gases are taken as the flow-governing equations. This coupled set of differential equations, written in terms of the Lam-Crocco variables, has been solved by a line-relaxation finite-difference techniques. The results presented include the Stanton number and the local skin-friction coefficient as functions of shock Mach number and the nondimensional distance-time variable. The results indicate that more than 95 percent of the test-gas boundary layer exists over a length, measured from the leading edge of the plate, equal to about three-tenths of the distance traversed by the interface in the free stream.

  16. Late Mesozoic- Cenozoic plate boundaries in the North Atlantic – Arctic: Quantitative reconstructions using Hellinger criterion in GPlates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gaina, Carmen; Watson, Robin; Cirbus, Juraj

    2015-04-01

    uncertainties are combined with a regional model and used to infer the plate boundaries during the formation of Labrador Sea and Baffin Bay. Challenges for establishing the continuation of these plate boundaries the Arctic domain are also discussed. References Chang, T. (1988), Estimating the relative rotation of two tectonic plates from boundary crossings, J. Am. Stat. Assoc., 83, 1178-1183. Hellinger, S. J. (1981), The uncertainties of finite rotations in plate tectonics, J Geophys Res, 86, 9312-9318. Hanna, M.S and T. Chang (1990), On graphically representing the confidence region for an unknown rotation in three dimensions. Computers & Geosciences 16 (2), 163-194. Royer, J. Y., and T. Chang (1991), Evidence for Relative Motions between the Indian and Australian Plates during the Last 20 My from Plate Tectonic Reconstructions - Implications for the Deformation of the Indo-Australian Plate, J Geophys Res, 96(B7), 11779-11802.

  17. The Tectonic Boundary Between Eastern Subbaisin and South-West Subbasin of the South China Sea Revealed from the Normalized Magnetic Source Strength

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, L.; Meng, X.

    2014-12-01

    The South China Sea (SCS), surrounded by the Eurasia, Pacific and India-Australia plates, is one of the largest marginal seas in the Western Pacific. It was formed by the interaction of the three plates and the seafloor spreading during Late Oligocene time to Early Miocene time. The boundary between Eastern Subbaisin and South-west Subbasin of the SCS has long been debated in the literature. Refining the boundary is one of the crucial tasks for correctly understanding the seafloor spreading model of the SCS. Due to few drills on the deep ocean basin of the SCS, magnetic data become important information for refining the boundary. However, the interpretation of magnetic data in the SCS suffers from the remanent magnetization of ocean crust as well as igneous rock and seamounts. The conventional reduction-to-pole anomalies at low latitudes usually neglect the remanent magnetization, making the interpretation incorrect. Here, we assembled high-resolution total magnetic intensity (TMI) data around the ocean basin of the SCS, and then did a special transformation of the TMI anomalies with a varying magnetic inclinations algorithm to obtain the normalized source strength (NSS). The NSS has advantage of insensitivity to remanent magnetization, benefitting correct interpretation. The NSS presents discriminative features from east to west in the ocean basin. The boundary of the discriminative features is clear and just ranges from the northeastern edge of the Zhongsha Islands running in the southeast direction to the northeastern edge of the Reed Bank. These imply that magnetic structure and tectonic features in the crust are discriminative between both sides of this boundary. It can be deduced that this boundary is the tectonic boundary between Eastern Subbaisin and South-west Subbasin. We acknowledge the financial support of the National Natural Science Foundation of China (41374093) and the SinoProbe-01-05 project.

  18. On gravity from SST, geoid from Seasat, and plate age and fracture zones in the Pacific

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Marsh, B. D.; Marsh, J. G.; Williamson, R. G. (Principal Investigator)

    1984-01-01

    A composite map produced by combining 90 passes of SST data show good agreement with conventional GEM models. The SEASAT altimeter data were deduced and found to agree with both the SST and GEM fields. The maps are dominated (especially in the east) by a pattern of roughly east-west anomalies with a transverse wavelength of about 2000 km. Comparison with regional bathymetric data shows a remarkedly close correlation with plate age. Most anomalies in the east half of the Pacific could be partly caused by regional differences in plate age. The amplitude of these geoid or gravity anomalies caused by age differences should decrease with absolute plate age, and large anomalies (approximately 3 m) over old, smooth sea floor may indicate a further deeper source within or perhaps below the lithosphere. The possible plume size and ascent velocity necessary to supply deep mantle material to the upper mantle without complete thermal equilibration was considered. A plume emanating from a buoyant layer 100 km thick and 10,000 times less viscous than the surrounding mantle should have a diameter of about 400 km and must ascend at about 10 cm/yr to arrive still anomalously hot in the uppermost mantle.

  19. Deleterious localized stress fields: the effects of boundaries and stiffness tailoring in anisotropic laminated plates

    PubMed Central

    Weaver, P. M.

    2016-01-01

    The safe design of primary load-bearing structures requires accurate prediction of stresses, especially in the vicinity of geometric discontinuities where deleterious three-dimensional stress fields can be induced. Even for thin-walled structures significant through-thickness stresses arise at edges and boundaries, and this is especially precarious for laminates of advanced fibre-reinforced composites because through-thickness stresses are the predominant drivers in delamination failure. Here, we use a higher-order equivalent single-layer model derived from the Hellinger–Reissner mixed variational principle to examine boundary layer effects in laminated plates comprising constant-stiffness and variable-stiffness laminae and deforming statically in cylindrical bending. The results show that zigzag deformations, which arise due to layerwise differences in the transverse shear moduli, drive boundary layers towards clamped edges and are therefore critically important in quantifying localized stress gradients. The relative significance of the boundary layer scales with the degree of layerwise anisotropy and the thickness to characteristic length ratio. Finally, we demonstrate that the phenomenon of alternating positive and negative transverse shearing deformation through the thickness of composite laminates, previously only observed at clamped boundaries, can also occur at other locations as a result of smoothly varying the material properties over the in-plane dimensions of the laminate. PMID:27843401

  20. Skin friction drag reduction on a flat plate turbulent boundary layer using synthetic jets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Belanger, Randy; Boom, Pieter D.; Hanson, Ronald E.; Lavoie, Philippe; Zingg, David W.

    2017-11-01

    In these studies, we investigate the effect of mild synthetic jet actuation on a flat plate turbulent boundary layer with the goal of interacting with the large scales in the log region of the boundary layer and manipulating the overall skin friction. Results will be presented from both large eddy simulations (LES) and wind tunnel experiments. In the experiments, a large parameter space of synthetic jet frequency and amplitude was studied with hot film sensors at select locations behind a pair of synthetic jets to identify the parameters that produce the greatest changes in the skin friction. The LES simulations were performed for a selected set of parameters and provide a more complete evaluation of the interaction between the boundary layer and synthetic jets. Five boundary layer thicknesses downstream, the skin friction between the actuators is generally found to increase, while regions of reduced skin friction persist downstream of the actuators. This pattern is reversed for forcing at low frequency. Overall, the spanwise-averaged skin friction is increased by the forcing, except when forcing at high frequency and low amplitude, for which a net skin friction reduction persists downstream. The physical interpretation of these results will be discussed. The financial support of Airbus is gratefully acknowledged.

  1. Rebalance to the Pacific: Resourcing the Strategy

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-03-01

    concern is the geophysical stability of the ocean floor. Plate tectonics are shifting the sea floor daily, creating constant seismic activity. Known...countriesandterritories/northkorea/ index.html. 13 The Pacific Plate is unstable and always shifting, causing plates to slide underneath each other thus creating energy

  2. Earthquake-induced gravitational potential energy change at convergent plate boundary near Taiwan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lo, C.; Hsu, S.

    2004-12-01

    The coseismic displacement induced by earthquakes will change the gravitational potential energy (GPE). Okamoto and Tanimoto (2002) have shown that the gain of {Δ GPE} corresponds to the compressional stress regime while the loss of {Δ GPE} corresponds to the extensional stress regime. Here we show an example at a convergent plate boundary near Taiwan. The Philippine Sea Plate is converging against the Eurasian Plate with a velocity of 7-8 cm/yr near Taiwan, which has caused the active Taiwan orogeny and induced abundant earthquakes. We have examined the corresponding change of gravitational potential energy by using 757 earthquakes from the earthquake catalogue of the Broadband Array in Taiwan for Seismology (BATS) from July 1995 to December 2003. The results show that the variation of the crustal Δ GPE strongly correlates with the different stage of the orogenesis. Except for the western Okinawa Trough and the southern Taiwan, most of the Taiwan convergent region exhibits a gain of crustal Δ GPE. In contrast, the lithospheric Δ GPE in the Taiwan region exhibits a reverse pattern. For the whole Taiwan region, the earthquake-induced crustal Δ GPE and the lithospheric Δ GPE during the observation period are 1.03×1017 joules and -1.15×1017 joules, respectively. The average rate of the whole Δ GPE in the Taiwan region is very intense and equal to -2.07×1010 watts, corresponding to about one percent of the global Δ GPE loss induced by earthquakes.

  3. Plume-stagnant slab-lithosphere interactions: Origin of the late Cenozoic intra-plate basalts on the East Eurasia margin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kimura, Jun-Ichi; Sakuyama, Tetsuya; Miyazaki, Takashi; Vaglarov, Bogdan S.; Fukao, Yoshio; Stern, Robert J.

    2018-02-01

    Intra-plate basalts of 35-0 Ma in East Eurasia formed in a broad backarc region above the stagnant Pacific Plate slab in the mantle transition zone. These basalts show regional-scale variations in Nd-Hf isotopes. The basalts with the most radiogenic Nd-Hf center on the Shandong Peninsula with intermediate Nd-Hf at Hainan and Datong. The least radiogenic basalts occur in the perimeters underlain by the thick continental lithosphere. Shandong basalts possess isotopic signatures of the young igneous oceanic crust of the subducted Pacific Plate. Hainan and Datong basalts have isotopic signatures of recycled subduction materials with billions of years of storage in the mantle. The perimeter basalts have isotopic signatures similar to pyroxenite xenoliths from the subcontinental lithospheric mantle beneath East Eurasia. Hainan basalts exhibit the highest mantle potential temperature (Tp), while the Shandong basalts have the lowest Tp. We infer that a deep high-Tp plume interacted with the subducted Pacific Plate slab in the mantle transition zone to form a local low-Tp plume by entraining colder igneous oceanic lithosphere. We infer that the subducted Izanagi Plate slab, once a part of the Pacific Plate mosaic, broke off from the Pacific Plate slab at 35 Ma to sink into the lower mantle. The sinking Izanagi slab triggered the plume that interacted with the stagnant Pacific slab and caused subcontinental lithospheric melting. This coincided with formation of the western Pacific backarc marginal basins due to Pacific Plate slab rollback and stagnation.

  4. Interaction between central volcanoes and regional tectonics along divergent plate boundaries: Askja, Iceland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trippanera, Daniele; Ruch, Joël; Acocella, Valerio; Thordarson, Thor; Urbani, Stefano

    2018-01-01

    Activity within magmatic divergent plate boundaries (MDPB) focuses along both regional fissure swarms and central volcanoes. An ideal place to investigate their mutual relationship is the Askja central volcano in Iceland. Askja consists of three nested calderas (namely Kollur, Askja and Öskjuvatn) located within a hyaloclastite massif along the NNE-SSW trending Icelandic MDPB. We performed an extensive field-based structural analysis supported by a remote sensing study of tectonic and volcanic features of Askja's calderas and of the eastern flank of the hyaloclastite massif. In the massif, volcano-tectonic structures trend N 10° E to N 40° E, but they vary around the Askja caldera being both parallel to the caldera rim and cross-cutting on the Western side. Structural trends around the Öskjuvatn caldera are typically rim parallel. Volcanic vents and dikes are preferentially distributed along the caldera ring faults; however, they follow the NNE-SSW regional structures when located outside the calderas. Our results highlight that the Askja volcano displays a balanced amount of regional (fissure-swarm related) and local (shallow-magma-chamber related) tectonic structures along with a mutual interaction among these. This is different from Krafla volcano (to the north of Askja) dominated by regional structures and Grímsvötn (to the South) dominated by local structures. Therefore, Askja represents an intermediate tectono-magmatic setting for volcanoes located in a slow divergent plate boundary. This is also likely in accordance with a northward increase in the spreading rate along the Icelandic MDPB.

  5. Multi-type Tectonic Responses to Plate Motion Changes of Mega-Offset Transform Faults at the Pacific-Antarctic Ridge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, F.; Lin, J.; Yang, H.; Zhou, Z.

    2017-12-01

    Magmatic and tectonic responses of a mid-ocean ridge system to plate motion changes can provide important constraints on the mechanisms of ridge-transform interaction and lithospheric properties. Here we present new analysis of multi-type responses of the mega-offset transform faults at the Pacific-Antarctic Ridge (PAR) system to plate motion changes in the last 12 Ma. Detailed analysis of the Heezen, Tharp, and Udintsev transform faults showed that the extensional stresses induced by plate motion changes could have been released through a combination of magmatic and tectonic processes: (1) For a number of ridge segments with abundant magma supply, plate motion changes might have caused the lateral transport of magma along the ridge axis and into the abutting transform valley, forming curved "hook" ridges at the ridge-transform intersection. (2) Plate motion changes might also have caused vertical deformation on steeply-dipping transtensional faults that were developed along the Heezen, Tharp, and Udintsev transform faults. (3) Distinct zones of intensive tectonic deformation, resembling belts of "rift zones", were found to be sub-parallel to the investigated transform faults. These rift-like deformation zones were hypothesized to have developed when the stresses required to drive the vertical deformation on the steeply-dipping transtensional faults along the transform faults becomes excessive, and thus deformation on off-transform "rift zones" became favored. (4) However, to explain the observed large offsets on the steeply-dipping transtensional faults, the transform faults must be relatively weak with low apparent friction coefficient comparing to the adjacent lithospheric plates.

  6. Lasting mantle scars lead to perennial plate tectonics.

    PubMed

    Heron, Philip J; Pysklywec, Russell N; Stephenson, Randell

    2016-06-10

    Mid-ocean ridges, transform faults, subduction and continental collisions form the conventional theory of plate tectonics to explain non-rigid behaviour at plate boundaries. However, the theory does not explain directly the processes involved in intraplate deformation and seismicity. Recently, damage structures in the lithosphere have been linked to the origin of plate tectonics. Despite seismological imaging suggesting that inherited mantle lithosphere heterogeneities are ubiquitous, their plate tectonic role is rarely considered. Here we show that deep lithospheric anomalies can dominate shallow geological features in activating tectonics in plate interiors. In numerical experiments, we found that structures frozen into the mantle lithosphere through plate tectonic processes can behave as quasi-plate boundaries reactivated under far-field compressional forcing. Intraplate locations where proto-lithospheric plates have been scarred by earlier suturing could be regions where latent plate boundaries remain, and where plate tectonics processes are expressed as a 'perennial' phenomenon.

  7. Analysis of seasonal ozone budget and spring ozone latitudinal gradient variation in the boundary layer of the Asia-Pacific region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hou, Xuewei; Zhu, Bin; Kang, Hanqing; Gao, Jinhui

    2014-09-01

    The ozone (O3) budget in the boundary layer of the Asia-Pacific region (AP) was studied from 2001 to 2007 using the output of Model of Ozone and Related chemical Tracers, version 4 (MOZART-4). The model-simulated O3 data agree well with observed values. O3 budget analysis using the model output confirms that the dominant factor controlling seasonal variation of O3 differs by region. Photochemistry was found to play a critical role over Japan, the Korean Peninsula and Eastern China. Over the northwestern Pacific Ocean, advective flux was found to drive the seasonal variation of O3 concentrations. The large latitudinal gradient in O3 with a maximum of 52 ppbv over the marine boundary layer around 35°N during the spring was mainly due to chemistry; meanwhile, advection was found to weaken the gradient. The contribution of stratospheric O3 was ranked second (20%) to the local contribution (25%) in Japan and the Korean Peninsula near 35°N. The rate of O3 export from China's boundary layer was the highest (approximately 30%) in low latitudes and decreased with increasing latitude, while the contribution of North America and Europe increased with increasing latitude, from 10% in lower latitudes to 24% in higher latitudes.

  8. Possibility of existence of serpentinized material at the Izu-Bonin subduction plate boundary around 31N using Q structure by FDM-simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kamimura, A.; Kasahara, J.

    2003-12-01

    At the Izu-Bonin subduction zone (IBSZ), there is a chain of serpentine seamounts at the forearc slope of trench axis, and few large earthquakes occurred at shallow depth (<100km) in spite of many large ones at greater depth (>400km). To elucidate these characteristics we carried out a seismic refraction-reflection study at the forearc slope of the IBSZ around 31N using 22 OBSs and chemical explosives and airguns as seismic sources in 1998. As the results of forward and travel-time inversion modeling of the study, P-wave velocity structures were obtained along E-W and N-S survey lines which is perpendicular to and parallel to the trench axis, respectively (Kamimura et al., 2002). The result of E-W line (transect a summit of serpentine seamount) suggests presence of a low velocity zone just above the subducting Pacific plate, and this zone connects to the Torishima Serpentine Forearc Seamount. The interpretation of the result was: dehydration of hydrated oceanic crust supplies water to the mantle wedge, and peridotites of the mantle wedge were serpentinized. The serpentinized peridotites have moved between the oceanic slab and the overriding island arc crust and were diapiring into the serpentine seamount. The serpentine on the plate boundary might act as a lubricant and decrease seismic activity along the subduction zone, and this can explain the characteristics of seismicity of IBSZ. In order to evaluate Q structures of the above low velocity zone on the subducting slab, we calculated synthetic waveforms using FDM (Finite Difference Method) with elastodynamic formulation (E3D code, developed by Dr. Shawn Larsen) and the P-wave velocity 2D structure of Kamimura et al. (2002). The E3D uses staggered grid, and 2nd order and 4th order approximation in time and space, respectively. Grid spacing of the calculation is 30 m in x and z, and 1.5 msec in time. Five-Hz and 0-phase Ricker wavelet_@pressure source was used. Several structure models are used for comparison. One

  9. Convergent Plate Boundary Processes in the Archean: Evidence from Greenland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Polat, A.

    2014-12-01

    The structural, magmatic and metamorphic characteristics of Archean greenstone belts and associated TTG (tonalite, trondhjemite and granodiorite) gneisses in southern West Greenland are comparable to those of Phanerozoic convergent plate margins, suggesting that Archean continents grew mainly at subduction zones. These greenstone belts are composed mainly of tectonically juxtaposed fragments of oceanic crust including mafic to ultramafic rocks, with minor sedimentary rocks. Volcanic rocks in the greenstone belts are characterized mainly by island arc tholeiitic basalts, picrites, and boninites. The style of deformation and geometry of folds in 10 cm to 5 m wide shear zones are comparable to those occur on 1 to 50 km scale in the greenstone belts and TTG gneisses, suggesting that compressional tectonic processes operating at convergent plate boundaries were the driving force of Archean crustal accretion and growth. Field observations and trace element data suggest that Archean continental crust grew through accretion of mainly island arcs and melting of metamorphosed mafic rocks (amphibolites) in thickened arcs during multiple tectonothermal events. Fold patterns on cm to km scale are consistent with at least three phases of deformation and multiple melting events generating TTG melts that intruded mainly along shear zones in accretionary prism and magmatic arcs. It is suggested that Archean TTGs were produced by three main processes: (1) melting of thickened oceanic island arcs; (2) melting of subducted oceanic crust; and (3) differentiation of basaltic melts originating from metasomatized sub-arc mantle wedge peridotites.

  10. Nonlinear Radiation Heat Transfer Effects in the Natural Convective Boundary Layer Flow of Nanofluid Past a Vertical Plate: A Numerical Study

    PubMed Central

    Mustafa, Meraj; Mushtaq, Ammar; Hayat, Tasawar; Ahmad, Bashir

    2014-01-01

    The problem of natural convective boundary layer flow of nanofluid past a vertical plate is discussed in the presence of nonlinear radiative heat flux. The effects of magnetic field, Joule heating and viscous dissipation are also taken into consideration. The governing partial differential equations are transformed into a system of coupled nonlinear ordinary differential equations via similarity transformations and then solved numerically using the Runge–Kutta fourth-fifth order method with shooting technique. The results reveal an existence of point of inflection for the temperature distribution for sufficiently large wall to ambient temperature ratio. Temperature and thermal boundary layer thickness increase as Brownian motion and thermophoretic effects intensify. Moreover temperature increases and heat transfer from the plate decreases with an increase in the radiation parameter. PMID:25251242

  11. Crustal deformation evidences for viscous coupling and fragmented lithosphere at the Nubia-Iberia plate boundary (Western Mediterranean)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Palano, Mimmo; González, Pablo J.; Fernández, José

    2016-04-01

    A spatially dense crustal velocity field, based on up to 15 years of GNSS observations at more than 380 sites and extensively covering the Iberian Peninsula and Northern Africa, allow us to provide new insights into two main tectonic processes currently occurring in this area. We detected a slow large-scale clockwise rotation of the Iberian Peninsula with respect to a local pole located closely to the northwestern sector of the Pyrenean mountain range (Palano et al., 2015). Although this crustal deformation pattern could suggest a rigid rotating lithosphere block, this model would predict significant shortening along the Western (off-shore Lisbon) and North Iberian margin which cannot totally ruled out but currently is not clearly observed. Conversely, we favour the interpretation that this pattern reflects the quasi-continuous straining of the ductile lithosphere in some sectors of South and Western Iberia in response to viscous coupling of the NW Nubia and Iberian plate boundary in the Gulf of Cádiz. Furthermore, the western Mediterranean basin appears fragmented into independent crustal tectonic blocks, which delimited by inherited lithospheric shear structures and trapped within the Nubia-Eurasia collision, are currently accommodating most of the plate convergence rate. Among these blocks, an (oceanic-like western) Algerian one is currently transferring a significant fraction of the Nubia-Eurasia convergence rate into the Eastern Betics (SE Iberia) and likely causing the eastward motion of the Baleares Promontory. Most of the observed crustal ground deformation can be attributed to processes driven by spatially variable lithospheric plate forces imposed along the Nubia-Eurasia convergence boundary. Nevertheless, the observed deformation field infers a very low convergence rates as observed also at the eastern side of the western Mediterranean, along the Calabro Peloritan Arc, by space geodesy (e.g. Palano, 2015). References Palano M. (2015). On the present

  12. Tertiary plate tectonics and high-pressure metamorphism in New Caledonia

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Brothers, R.N.; Blake, M.C.

    1973-01-01

    The sialic basement of New Caledonia is a Permian-Jurassic greywacke sequence which was folded and metamorphosed to prehnite-pumpellyite or low-grade greenschist facies by the Late Jurassic. Succeeding Cretaceous-Eocene sediments unconformably overlie this basement and extend outwards onto oceanic crust. Tertiary tectonism occurred in three distinct phases. 1. (1) During the Late Eocene a nappe of peridotite was obducted onto southern New Caledonia from northeast to southwest, but without causing significant metamorphism in the underlying sialic rocks. 2. (2) Oligocene compressive thrust tectonics in the northern part of the island accompanied a major east-west subduction zone, at least 30 km wide, which is identified by an imbricate system of tectonically intruded melanges and by development of lawsonite-bearing assemblages in adjacent country rocks; this high-pressure mineralogy constituted a primary metamorphism for the Cretaceous-Eocene sedimentary pile, but was overprinted on the Mesozoic prehnite-pumpellyite metagreywackes. 3. (3) Post-Oligocene transcurrent faulting along a northwest-southeast line (the sillon) parallel to the west coast caused at least 150 km of dextral offset of the southwest frontal margin of the Eocene ultramafic nappe. At the present time, the tectonics of the southwest Pacific are related to a series of opposite facing subduction (Benioff) zones connected by transform faults extending from New Britain-Solomon Islands south through the New Hebrides to New Zealand and marking the boundary between the Australian and Pacific plates. Available geologic data from this region suggest that a similar geometry existed during the Tertiary and that the microcontinents of New Guinea, New Caledonia and New Zealand all lay along the former plate boundary which has since migrated north and east by a complex process of sea-floor spreading behind the active island arcs. ?? 1973.

  13. Recording Plate Boundary Deformation Processes Around The San Jacinto Fault, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hodgkinson, K.; Mencin, D.; Borsa, A.; Fox, O.; Walls, C.; Van Boskirk, E.

    2012-04-01

    The San Jacinto Fault is one of the major faults which form the San Andreas Fault System in southern California. The fault, which lies to the west of the San Andreas, is one of the most active in the region. While strain rates are higher along the San Andreas, 23-37 mm/yr compared to 12-22 mm/yr along the San Jacinto, there have been 11 earthquakes of M6 and greater along the San Jacinto in the past 150 years while there have been none of this magnitude on the San Andreas in this region. UNAVCO has installed an array of geodetic and seismic instruments along the San Jacinto as part of the Plate Boundary Observatory (PBO). The network includes 25 GPS stations within 20 km of the surface trace with a concentration of borehole instrumentation in the Anza region where there are nine boreholes sites. Most of the borehole sites contain a GTSM21 4-component strainmeter, a Sonde-2 seismometer, a MEMS accelerometer and a pore pressure sensor. Thus, the array has the capability to capture plate boundary deformation processes with periods of milliseconds (seismic) to decades (GPS). On July 7th 2010 a M5.4 earthquake occurred on the Coyote Creek segment of the fault. The event was preceded by a M4.9 earthquake in the same area four weeks earlier and four earthquakes of M5 and greater within a 20 km radius of the epicenter in the past 50 years. In this study we will present the signals recorded by the different instrument types for the July 7th 2010 event and will compare the coseismic displacements recorded by the GPS and strainmeters with the displacement field predicted by Okada [1992]. All data recorded as part of the PBO observatory are publically available from the UNAVCO, the IRIS Data Management Center and the Northern California Earthquake Data Center.

  14. Seismicity of the Earth 1900–2010 Australia plate and vicinity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Benz, Harley M.; Herman, Matthew; Tarr, Arthur C.; Hayes, Gavin P.; Furlong, Kevin P.; Villaseñor, Antonio; Dart, Richard L.; Rhea, Susan

    2011-01-01

    This map shows details of the Australia plate and vicinity not presented in Tarr and others (2010). The boundary of the Australia plate includes all fundamental plate boundary components: mid-ocean ridges, subduction zones, arc-continent collisions, and large-offset transform faults. Along the southern edge of the plate the mid-ocean ridge separates the Australia and Antarctica plates and its behavior is straightforward. In contrast, the other boundary segments that ring the Australia plate represent some of the most seismically active elements of the global plate boundary system, and some of the most rapidly evolving plate interactions. As a result, there are some very complex structures which host many large and great earthquakes

  15. Aerosol Properties Observed in the Subtropical North Pacific Boundary Layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Royalty, T. M.; Phillips, B. N.; Dawson, K. W.; Reed, R.; Meskhidze, N.; Petters, M. D.

    2017-09-01

    The impact of anthropogenic aerosol on climate forcing remains uncertain largely due to inadequate representation of natural aerosols in climate models. The marine boundary layer (MBL) might serve as a model location to study natural aerosol processes. Yet source and sink mechanisms controlling the MBL aerosol number, size distribution, chemical composition, and hygroscopic properties remain poorly constrained. Here aerosol size distribution and water uptake measurements were made aboard the R/V Hi'ialakai from 27 June to 3 July 2016 in the subtropical North Pacific Ocean. Size distributions were predominantly bimodal with an average integrated number concentration of 197 ± 98 cm-3. Hygroscopic growth factors were measured using the tandem differential mobility analyzer technique for dry 48, 96, and 144 nm particles. Mode kappa values for these were 0.57 ± 0.12, 0.51 ± 0.09, and 0.52 ± 0.08, respectively. To better understand remote MBL aerosol sources, a new algorithm was developed which decomposes hygroscopicity distributions into three classes: carbon-containing particles, sulfate-like particles, and sodium-containing particles. Results from this algorithm showed low and steady sodium-containing particle concentrations while the sulfate-like and carbon-containing particle concentrations varied during the cruise. According to the classification scheme, carbon-containing particles contributed at least 3-7%, sulfate-like particles contributed at most 77-88% and sodium-containing particles at least contributed 9-16% to the total aerosol number concentration. Size distribution and hygroscopicity data, in conjunction with air mass back trajectory analysis, suggested that the aerosol budget in the subtropical North Pacific MBL may be controlled by aerosol entrainment from the free troposphere.

  16. Supercontinent Pangea, Mantle Dynamics, and Reference Frame of Global Plate Motions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhong, S.; Rudolph, M. L.; Liu, X.

    2014-12-01

    Arguably the most important and challenging goal in geodynamics is to understand the two-way dynamics between tectonic plates and mantle convection. While it has long been recognized that the present-day degree-2 mantle structure as imaged seismically is closely related to the plate motions (Hager and O'Connell, 1981) and their history (<119 Ma) (Ricard et al., 1993; McNamara and Zhong, 2005), recent studies have expanded this concept, from two different perspectives, by seeking connections between Pangea assembly and breakup and mantle structure and dynamics. First, it has been proposed that the large igneous provinces (LIPs) and kimberlite volcanism erupted mainly along the edges of the two major seismically slow anomalies above the core-mantle boundary (often referred to as the Africa and Pacific LLSVPs) (Torsvik et al, 2010). This has led to the proposal that the present-day degree-2 mantle structure has existed for >500 Ma (Torsvik et al., 2014), although its statistical significance has been challenged (Austermann et al., 2013). The proposals of the spatially stable Africa and Pacific LLSVPs and of the LIP eruptions along their edges have also been exploited in attempts to build global plate motion models since the Pangea assembly by providing a plate motion reference frame or inferring true polar wander (TPW) corrections to the plate motions (Torsvik et al., 2014). Second, mantle dynamics studies indicate that degree-1 mantle convection, which is expected with realistic lithospheric and mantle viscosity, may be needed for assembly of a supercontinent (e.g., Pangea) (Zhong et al., 2007). This suggests that the present degree-2 mantle structure may have been formed only after the Pangea assembly from an initially degree-1 structure - a scenario that is consistent with convection calculations with a proxy plate motion model that considers Pangea process (Zhang et al., 2010). In this presentation, in addition to critically reviewing these arguments, we will

  17. A test of present-day plate geometries for northeast Asia and Japan

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Demets, Charles

    1992-01-01

    Alternative geometries for the present-day configuration of plate boundaries in northeast Asia and Japan are tested using NUVEL-1 and 256 horizontal earthquake slip vectors from the Japan and northern Kuril trenches. Statistical analysis of the slip vectors is used to determine whether the North American, Eurasian, or Okhotsk plate overlies the trench. Along the northern Kuril trench, slip vectors are well-fit by the NUVEL-1 Pacific-North America Euler pole, but are poorly fit by the Pacific-Eurasia Euler pole. Results for the Japan trench are less conclusive, but suggest that much of Honshu and Hokkaido are also part of the North American plate. The simplest geometry consistent with the trench slip vectors is a geometry in which the North American plate extends south to 41 deg N, and possibly includes northern Honshu and southern Hokkaido. Although these results imply that the diffuse seismicity that connects the Lena River delta to Sakhalin Island and the eastern Sea of Japan records motion between Eurasia and North America, onshore geologic and seismic data define an additional belt of seismicity in Siberia that cannot be explained with this geometry. Assuming that these two seismic belts constitute evidence for an Okhotsk block, two published kinematic models for motion of the Okhotsk block are tested. The first model, which predicts motion of up to 15 mm/yr relative to North America, is rejected because Kuril and Japan trench slip vectors are fit more poorly than for the simpler geometry described above. The second model gives a good fit to the trench slip vectors, but only if Okhotsk-North America motion is slower than 5 mm/yr.

  18. Lasting mantle scars lead to perennial plate tectonics

    PubMed Central

    Heron, Philip J.; Pysklywec, Russell N.; Stephenson, Randell

    2016-01-01

    Mid-ocean ridges, transform faults, subduction and continental collisions form the conventional theory of plate tectonics to explain non-rigid behaviour at plate boundaries. However, the theory does not explain directly the processes involved in intraplate deformation and seismicity. Recently, damage structures in the lithosphere have been linked to the origin of plate tectonics. Despite seismological imaging suggesting that inherited mantle lithosphere heterogeneities are ubiquitous, their plate tectonic role is rarely considered. Here we show that deep lithospheric anomalies can dominate shallow geological features in activating tectonics in plate interiors. In numerical experiments, we found that structures frozen into the mantle lithosphere through plate tectonic processes can behave as quasi-plate boundaries reactivated under far-field compressional forcing. Intraplate locations where proto-lithospheric plates have been scarred by earlier suturing could be regions where latent plate boundaries remain, and where plate tectonics processes are expressed as a ‘perennial' phenomenon. PMID:27282541

  19. Intraplate deformation, stress in the lithosphere and the driving mechanism for plate motions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hager, Bradford H.

    1988-01-01

    During this period work was carried out on three fronts relevant to the understanding of intraplate deformation, stress in the lithosphere, and the driving mechanisms for plate motions: (1) observational constraints, using GPS geodesy on the deformation in the region of the boundry between the Pacific and North American plates in central and southern California; (2) numerical modeling of the effects of temperature dependent lithospheric viscosity on the stress and strain history of extensional regimes; and (3) improvement of estimates of mantle viscosity variation, the long-wave-length density variations in the mantle, and the topography of the core-mantel boundary from modeling of geoid anomalies, nutation, and changes in length of day. These projects are described in more detail, followed by a discussion of meetings attended and a list of abstracts and papers submitted and/or published.

  20. A Western Pacific Hotspot?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    MacPherson, C. G.; Hall, R.

    2002-12-01

    The petrology of volcanic rocks from the St. Andrew Strait and helium isotope ratios of backarc lavas from the Manus Basin have been used to propose the existence of an active hotspot beneath the eastern Bismarck Sea [1,2]. The possible influence of this hotspot can be assessed by mapping its present location onto a plate tectonic reconstruction of the western Pacific [3,4]. During the Middle Eocene the nascent Izu-Bonin-Mariana (IBM) arc lay above the hotspot. The volume of magma emplaced at the IBM arc at that time substantially exceeds the average magma production rate for mature island arcs. Furthermore, the ultramafic (boninitic) character of much of this magmatism requires elevated temperatures in the mantle. The geochemistry of contemporaneous magmatism in the backarc resembles melts usually found at ocean islands and much of the backarc region experienced significant uplift at that time. All of these features can be explained by the influx of hot, buoyant, chemically distinct mantle beneath the IBM and its hinterland. The plates lying above the hotspot during the later Eocene were subsequently subducted, but plate reconstruction suggests that during the Oligo-Miocene it was crossed by parts of the Caroline Plate where the Euripik Rise is found. This is an aseismic rise that possesses the geophysical characteristics of thickened oceanic crust formed by excess, basaltic magmatism and is the type of structure that would result from the passage of relatively young oceanic lithosphere over a mantle hotspot. Plate reconstruction for the western Pacific predicts a hotspot trail that is consistent with the Middle Eocene and Oligo-Miocene geology of the IBM and Caroline Plates, respectively. Parts of the trail have been disrupted by subsequent sea-floor spreading or lost through subduction but the remaining vestiges are consistent with the action of a thermal anomaly throughout much of the Cenozoic. More speculatively, the difference in buoyancy between the IBM

  1. Unsteady Boundary-Layer Flow over Jerked Plate Moving in a Free Stream of Viscoelastic Fluid

    PubMed Central

    Mehmood, Ahmer; Ali, Asif; Saleem, Najma

    2014-01-01

    This study aims to investigate the unsteady boundary-layer flow of a viscoelastic non-Newtonian fluid over a flat surface. The plate is suddenly jerked to move with uniform velocity in a uniform stream of non-Newtonian fluid. Purely analytic solution to governing nonlinear equation is obtained. The solution is highly accurate and valid for all values of the dimensionless time 0 ≤ τ < ∞. Flow properties of the viscoelastic fluid are discussed through graphs. PMID:24892060

  2. Large-Eddy Simulation of the Flat-plate Turbulent Boundary Layer at High Reynolds numbers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Inoue, Michio

    The near-wall, subgrid-scale (SGS) model [Chung and Pullin, "Large-eddy simulation and wall-modeling of turbulent channel flow'', J. Fluid Mech. 631, 281--309 (2009)] is used to perform large-eddy simulations (LES) of the incompressible developing, smooth-wall, flat-plate turbulent boundary layer. In this model, the stretched-vortex, SGS closure is utilized in conjunction with a tailored, near-wall model designed to incorporate anisotropic vorticity scales in the presence of the wall. The composite SGS-wall model is presently incorporated into a computer code suitable for the LES of developing flat-plate boundary layers. This is then used to study several aspects of zero- and adverse-pressure gradient turbulent boundary layers. First, LES of the zero-pressure gradient turbulent boundary layer are performed at Reynolds numbers Retheta based on the free-stream velocity and the momentum thickness in the range Retheta = 103-1012. Results include the inverse skin friction coefficient, 2/Cf , velocity profiles, the shape factor H, the Karman "constant", and the Coles wake factor as functions of Re theta. Comparisons with some direct numerical simulation (DNS) and experiment are made, including turbulent intensity data from atmospheric-layer measurements at Retheta = O (106). At extremely large Retheta , the empirical Coles-Fernholz relation for skin-friction coefficient provides a reasonable representation of the LES predictions. While the present LES methodology cannot of itself probe the structure of the near-wall region, the present results show turbulence intensities that scale on the wall-friction velocity and on the Clauser length scale over almost all of the outer boundary layer. It is argued that the LES is suggestive of the asymptotic, infinite Reynolds-number limit for the smooth-wall turbulent boundary layer and different ways in which this limit can be approached are discussed. The maximum Retheta of the present simulations appears to be limited by machine

  3. DSMC simulations of leading edge flat-plate boundary layer flows at high Mach number

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pradhan, Sahadev, , Dr.

    2017-04-01

    The flow over a 2D leading-edge flat plate is studied at Mach number Ma =(Uinf / \\setmn √{kBTinf / m}) in the range plate boundary layer at high Mach number. Here, LT is the characteristic dimension, Uinfand Tinfare the free stream velocity and temperature, rhoinf is the free stream density, m is the molecular mass, muinf is the molecular viscosity based on the free stream temperature Tinf , and kB is the Boltzmann constant. The variation of streamwise velocity, temperature, number-density, and mean free path along the wall normal direction away from the plate surface is studied. The qualitative nature of the streamwise velocity at high Mach number is similar to those in the incompressible limit (parabolic profile). However, there are important differences. The amplitudes of the streamwise velocity increase as the Mach number increases and turned into a more flatter profile near the wall. There is significant velocity and temperature slip at the surface of the plate, and the slip increases as the Mach number is increased. It is interesting to note that for the highest Mach numbers considered here, the streamwise velocity at the wall exceeds the sound speed, and the flow is supersonic throughout the flow domain.

  4. DSMC simulations of leading edge flat-plate boundary layer flows at high Mach number

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pradhan, Sahadev, , Dr.

    2016-11-01

    The flow over a 2D leading-edge flat plate is studied at Mach number Ma = (Uinf /√{kBTinf / m }) in the range plate boundary layer at high Mach number. Here, LT is the characteristic dimension, Uinf and Tinf are the free stream velocity and temperature, ρinf is the free stream density, mis the molecular mass, μinf is the molecular viscosity based on the free stream temperature Tinf, and kB is the Boltzmann constant. The variation of streamwise velocity, temperature, number-density, and mean free path along the wall normal direction away from the plate surface is studied. The qualitative nature of the streamwise velocity at high Mach number is similar to those in the incompressible limit (parabolic profile). However, there are important differences. The amplitudes of the streamwise velocity increase as the Mach number increases and turned into a more flatter profile near the wall. There is significant velocity and temperature slip at the surface of the plate, and the slip increases as the Mach number is increased. It is interesting to note that for the highest Mach numbers considered here, the streamwise velocity at the wall exceeds the sound speed, and the flow is supersonic throughout the flow domain.

  5. DSMC simulations of leading edge flat-plate boundary layer flows at high Mach number

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pradhan, Sahadev, , Dr.

    2017-01-01

    The flow over a 2D leading-edge flat plate is studied at Mach number Ma = (Uinf /√{kBTinf / m }) in the range plate boundary layer at high Mach number. Here, LT is the characteristic dimension, Uinf and Tinf are the free stream velocity and temperature, rhoinf is the free stream density, m is the molecular mass, muinf is the molecular viscosity based on the free stream temperature Tinf , and kB is the Boltzmann constant. The variation of streamwise velocity, temperature, number-density, and mean free path along the wall normal direction away from the plate surface is studied. The qualitative nature of the streamwise velocity at high Mach number is similar to those in the incompressible limit (parabolic profile). However, there are important differences. The amplitudes of the streamwise velocity increase as the Mach number increases and turned into a more flatter profile near the wall. There is significant velocity and temperature slip at the surface of the plate, and the slip increases as the Mach number is increased. It is interesting to note that for the highest Mach numbers considered here, the streamwise velocity at the wall exceeds the sound speed, and the flow is supersonic throughout the flow domain.

  6. DSMC simulations of leading edge flat-plate boundary layer flows at high Mach number

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pradhan, Sahadev

    2016-10-01

    The flow over a 2D leading-edge flat plate is studied at Mach number Ma = (Uinf / {kBTinf /m}) in the range plate boundary layer at high Mach number. Here, LT is the characteristic dimension, Uinf and Tinf are the free stream velocity and temperature, rhoinf is the free stream density, m is the molecular mass, muinf is the molecular viscosity based on the free stream temperature Tinf , and kB is the Boltzmann constant. The variation of streamwise velocity, temperature, number-density, and mean free path along the wall normal direction away from the plate surface is studied. The qualitative nature of the streamwise velocity at high Mach number is similar to those in the incompressible limit (parabolic profile). However, there are important differences. The amplitudes of the streamwise velocity increase as the Mach number increases and turned into a more flatter profile near the wall. There is significant velocity and temperature slip at the surface of the plate, and the slip increases as the Mach number is increased. It is interesting to note that for the highest Mach numbers considered here, the streamwise velocity at the wall exceeds the sound speed, and the flow is supersonic throughout the flow domain.

  7. DSMC simulations of leading edge flat-plate boundary layer flows at high Mach number

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pradhan, Sahadev, , Dr.

    The flow over a 2D leading-edge flat plate is studied at Mach number Ma = (Uinf / ∖ sqrt{kBTinf / m})in the range plate boundary layer at high Mach number. Here, LTis the characteristic dimension, Uinfand Tinfare the free stream velocity and temperature, rhoinf is the free stream density, mis the molecular mass, muinf is the molecular viscosity based on the free stream temperature Tinf , and kBis the Boltzmann constant. The variation of streamwise velocity, temperature, number-density, and mean free path along the wall normal direction away from the plate surface is studied. The qualitative nature of the streamwise velocity at high Mach number is similar to those in the incompressible limit (parabolic profile). However, there are important differences. The amplitudes of the streamwise velocity increase as the Mach number increases and turned into a more flatter profile near the wall. There is significant velocity and temperature slip at the surface of the plate, and the slip increases as the Mach number is increased. It is interesting to note that for the highest Mach numbers considered here, the streamwise velocity at the wall exceeds the sound speed, and the flow is supersonic throughout the flow domain. Indian Institute of Science Bangalore-560 012, India.

  8. GIS Plate Tectonic Reconstruction of the Gulf of California-Salton Trough Oblique Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Skinner, L. A.; Bennett, S. E.; Umhoefer, P. J.; Oskin, M. E.; Dorsey, R. J.; Nava, R. A.

    2011-12-01

    We present GIS-based plate tectonic reconstruction maps for the Gulf of California-Salton Trough oblique rift. The maps track plate boundary deformation in 2 and 1 Myr slices (6-2 Ma and 2 Ma-present) using a custom ArcGIS add-in tool to close extensional basins and restore slip on dextral faults. The tool takes a set of polygons depicting present day locations of tectonic blocks and sequentially restores displacement of their centroids along a vector specific to that time slice. Tectonic blocks are defined by faults, geology, seismic data, and bathymetry/topography. Spreading center and fault-slip rates were acquired from geologic data, cross-Gulf tie points, GPS studies, and aeromagnetic data. A recent GPS study indicated that ~92% of modern-day Pacific-North America (PAC-NAM) plate motion is localized between the Baja California microplate and North America. Relative plate motion azimuth varies from ~302° in the southern Gulf to ~314° in the Salton Trough. Baja-North America GPS rates agree remarkably with ~6 Ma geologic offsets across the Gulf and are used during reconstruction steps back to 6 Ma. In the southern Gulf, unpublished GPS data indicate that modern plate motion is partitioned between the plate boundary, Gulf-margin system, and borderland faults west of Baja California. The Alarcon and Guaymas spreading centers initiated at 2.4 Ma and 6 Ma (Lizarralde et al., 2007), respectively, while the Farallon, Pescadero, and Carmen spreading centers began between ~2-1 Ma (Lonsdale, 1989). Therefore, the 2, 4, and 6 Ma reconstruction steps include a long transtensional fault zone along much of the southern Gulf, connecting the Guaymas spreading center with either the Alarcon spreading center or East Pacific Rise. In the northern Gulf, transtensional strain initiated in coastal Sonora by ~7 Ma and migrated westward as the Gulf opened. At ~6 Ma strain migrated west into marine pull-apart basins that now lie within the eastern Gulf. Seismic reflection studies

  9. Finding the last 200Ma of subducted lithosphere in tomography and incorporating it into plate reconstructions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Suppe, J.; Wu, J.; Chen, Y. W.

    2016-12-01

    Precise plate-tectonic reconstruction of the Earth has been constrained largely by the seafloor magnetic-anomaly record of the present oceans formed during the dispersal of the last supercontinent since 200Ma. The corresponding world that was lost to subduction has been only sketchily known. We have developed methodologies to map in 3D these subducted slabs of lithosphere in seismic tomography and unfold them to the Earth surface, constraining their initial size, shapes and locations. Slab edges are commonly formed at times of plate reorganization (for example bottom edges typically record initiation of subduction) such that unfolded slabs fit together at times of reorganization, as we illustrate for the Nazca slab at 80Ma and the western Pacific slabs between Kamchatka and New Zealand at 50Ma. Mapping to date suggests that a relatively complete and decipherable record of lithosphere subducted over the last 200Ma may exist in the mantle today, providing a storehouse for new discoveries. We briefly illustrate our procedure for obtaining slab-constrained plate-tectonic models from tomography with our recent study of the Philippine Sea plate, whose motions and tectonic history have been the least known of the major plates because it has been isolated from the global plate and hotspot circuit by trenches. We mapped and unfolded 28 subducted slabs in the mantle under East Asia and Australia/Oceania to depths of 1200km, with a subducted area of 25% of present-day global oceanic lithosphere, and incorporated them as constraints into a new globally-consistent plate reconstruction of the Philippine Sea and surrounding East Asia, leading to a number of new insights, including: [1] discovery of a major (8000 km x 2500 km) set of vanished oceans that we call the East Asia Sea that existed between the Pacific and Indian Oceans, now represented by flat slabs in the lower mantle under present-day Philippine Sea, eastern Sundaland and northern Australia and [2] the Philippine Sea

  10. The central role of the Hikurangi Plateau in the Cenozoic tectonics of New Zealand and the Southwest Pacific

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reyners, Martin

    2013-01-01

    Recent work involving relocation of New Zealand seismicity using a nationwide 3-D seismic velocity model has located the subducted western edge of the Hikurangi Plateau. Both the thickness (ca. 35 km) and the area of the plateau subducted in the Cenozoic (ca. 287,000 km2) are much larger than previously supposed. From ca. 45 Ma, the westernmost tip of the plateau controlled the transition at the Pacific/Australia plate boundary from subduction to the north to Emerald Basin opening to the south. At ca. 23 Ma, curvature of the subduction zone against the western flank of the buoyant plateau became extreme, and a Subduction-Transform Edge Propagator (STEP fault) developed along the western edge of the plateau. This STEP fault corresponds to the Alpine Fault, and the resulting Pacific slab edge is currently defined by intermediate-depth seismicity under the northernmost South Island. Alpine STEP fault propagation was terminated at ca. 15 Ma, when the western edge of the plateau became parallel to the trench, and thus STEP fault formation was no longer favoured. Wholesale subduction of the plateau at the Hikurangi subduction zone began at ca. 10 Ma. The development of a subduction décollement above the plateau mechanically favoured deformation within the overlying Australian plate continental crust. This led to inception of the Marlborough fault system at ca. 7 Ma, and the North Island fault system at 1-2 Ma. At ca. 7 Ma, the western edge of the converging plateau again became more normal to the trench, and there is evidence supporting the development of a second STEP fault beneath the Taupo Volcanic Zone until ca. 3 Ma. Both episodes of STEP fault development at the plateau edge led to rapid slab rollback, and correspond closely with episodes of backarc basin opening to the north in the wider Southwest Pacific. The Cenozoic tectonics of New Zealand and the Southwest Pacific has been strongly influenced not only by the resistance to subduction of the buoyant Hikurangi

  11. Vibration characteristics of functionally graded carbon nanotube reinforced composite rectangular plates on Pasternak foundation with arbitrary boundary conditions and internal line supports

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhong, Rui; Wang, Qingshan; Tang, Jinyuan; Shuai, Cijun; Liang, Qian

    2018-02-01

    This paper presents the first known vibration characteristics of moderately thick functionally graded carbon nanotube reinforced composite rectangular plates on Pasternak foundation with arbitrary boundary conditions and internal line supports on the basis of the firstorder shear deformation theory. Different distributions of single walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) along the thickness are considered. Uniform and other three kinds of functionally graded distributions of carbon nanotubes along the thickness direction of plates are studied. The solutions carried out using an enhanced Ritz method mainly include the following three points: Firstly, create the Lagrange energy function by the energy principle; Secondly, as the main innovation point, the modified Fourier series are chosen as the basic functions of the admissible functions of the plates to eliminate all the relevant discontinuities of the displacements and their derivatives at the edges; Lastly, solve the natural frequencies as well as the associated mode shapes by means of the Ritz-variational energy method. In this study, the influences of the volume fraction of CNTs, distribution type of CNTs, boundary restrain parameters, location of the internal line supports, foundation coefficients on the natural frequencies and mode shapes of the FG-CNT reinforced composite rectangular plates are presented.

  12. The effect of energy accumulation and boundary slip on laminar flow between rotating plates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Zhenpeng; Zeng, Liangcai; Chen, Keying; Jin, Xiaohong; Wu, Shiqian

    2018-02-01

    The poor operating conditions of fluid lubrication equipment during the start-up process are due to the resistance of the high-viscosity lubricating liquid. Moreover, the excessive reduction in fluid viscosity due to the elevated temperature resulting from power consumption during prolonged operation is not conducive to the generation of dynamic pressure. In this study, we examine the effect of energy accumulation and boundary slip on the laminar flow of a liquid between a pair of rotating plates. The experiments are conducted using a rotary rheometer, with polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) as the thermal insulation material and polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) as the slip drag reduction material, and a three-dimensional simulation model is established. This model is derived by combining the energy equation including the slip length and the heat conduction equation. Thus, the temperature changes over time are predicted by this model, and the model accuracy is verified by experiments. The results reveal the following points: 1) boundary slips function as a drag reduction mechanism for short-time continuous operation; 2) under prolonged operation, the slip reduces the extent of the oil viscosity decrease and clear control of the elevated temperature by the boundary slip is observed.

  13. Accelerated plate tectonics.

    PubMed

    Anderson, D L

    1975-03-21

    The concept of a stressed elastic lithospheric plate riding on a viscous asthenosphere is used to calculate the recurrence interval of great earthquakes at convergent plate boundaries, the separation of decoupling and lithospheric earthquakes, and the migration pattern of large earthquakes along an arc. It is proposed that plate motions accelerate after great decoupling earthquakes and that most of the observed plate motions occur during short periods of time, separated by periods of relative quiescence.

  14. Using Global Plate Velocity Boundary Conditions for Embedded Regional Geodynamic Models: Application to 3-D Modeling of the Early Rifting of the South Atlantic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taramón, Jorge M.; Morgan, Jason P.; Pérez-Gussinyé, Marta

    2016-04-01

    The treatment of far-field boundary conditions is one of the most poorly resolved issues for regional modeling of geodynamic processes. In viscous flow, the choice of far-field boundary conditions often strongly shapes the large-scale structure of a geosimulation. The mantle velocity field along the sidewalls and base of a modeling region is typically much more poorly known than the geometry of past global motions of the surface plates as constrained by global plate motion reconstructions. For regional rifting models it has become routine to apply highly simplified 'plate spreading' or 'uniform rifting' boundary conditions to a 3-D model that limits its ability to simulate the geodynamic evolution of a specific rifted margin. One way researchers are exploring the sensitivity of regional models to uncertain boundary conditions is to use a nested modeling approach in which a global model is used to determine a large-scale flow pattern that is imposed as a constraint along the boundaries of the region to be modeled. Here we explore the utility of a different approach that takes advantage of the ability of finite element models to use unstructured meshes than can embed much higher resolution sub-regions. Here we demonstrate the workflow and code tools that we created to generate this unstructured mesh: solver based on springs, guide-mesh and routines to improve the quality, e.g., closeness to a regular tetrahedron, of the tetrahedral elements of the mesh. Note that the same routines are used to generate a new mesh in the remeshing of a distorted Lagrangian mesh. In our initial project to validate this approach, we create a global spherical shell mesh in which a higher resolution sub-region is created around the nascent South Atlantic Rifting Margin. Global Plate motion BCs and plate boundaries are applied for the time of the onset of rifting, continuing through several 10s of Ma of rifting. Thermal, compositional, and melt-related buoyancy forces are only non

  15. Seismicity and Structure of the Incoming Pacific Plate Subducting into the Japan Trench off Miyagi

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Obana, K.; Fujie, G.; Kodaira, S.; Takahashi, T.; Yamamoto, Y.; Sato, T.; Yamashita, M.; Nakamura, Y.; Miura, S.

    2015-12-01

    Stresses within the oceanic plate in trench axis and outer-rise region have been characterized by shallow extension and deep compression due to the bending of the plate subducting into the trench. The stress state within the incoming/subducting oceanic plate is an important factor not only for the occurrence of shallow intraplate normal-faulting earthquakes in the trench-outer rise region but also the hydration of the oceanic plate through the shallow normal faults cutting the oceanic lithosphere. We investigate seismic velocity structure and stress state within the incoming/subducting Pacific Plate in the Japan Trench based on the OBS aftershock observations for the December 2012 intraplate doublet, which consists of a deep reverse faulting (Mw 7.2) and a shallow normal faulting (Mw 7.2) earthquake, in the Japan Trench off Miyagi. Hypocenter locations and seismic velocity structures were estimated from the arrival time data of about 3000 earthquakes by using double-difference tomography method (Zhang and Thurber, 2003). Also, focal mechanisms were estimated from first motion polarities by using the program HASH by Hardebeck and Shearer (2002). The results show that the earthquakes occurred mainly within the oceanic crust and the uppermost mantle. The deepest event was located at a depth of about 60 km. Focal mechanisms of the earthquakes shallower than a depth of 40 km indicate normal-faulting with T-axis normal to the trench. On the other hand, first motion polarities of the events at depths between 50 and 60 km can be explained a reverse faulting. The results suggest that the neutral plane of the stress between shallow extension and deep compression locates at 40 to 50 km deep. Seismic velocity structures indicate velocity decrease in the oceanic mantle toward the trench. Although the velocity decrease varies with locations, the results suggest the bending-related structure change could extend to at least about 15 km below the oceanic Moho in some locations.

  16. Numerical investigation of hypersonic flat-plate boundary layer transition mechanism induced by different roughness shapes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Yunlong; Zhao, Yunfei; Xu, Dan; Chai, Zhenxia; Liu, Wei

    2016-10-01

    The roughness-induced laminar-turbulent boundary layer transition is significant for high-speed aerospace applications. The transition mechanism is closely related to the roughness shape. In this paper, high-order numerical method is used to investigate the effect of roughness shape on the flat-plate laminar-to-turbulent boundary layer transition. Computations are performed in both the supersonic and hypersonic regimes (free-stream Mach number from 3.37 up to 6.63) for the square, cylinder, diamond and hemisphere roughness elements. It is observed that the square and diamond roughness elements are more effective in inducing transition compared with the cylinder and hemisphere ones. The square roughness element has the longest separated region in which strong unsteadiness exists and the absolute instability is formed, thus resulting in the earliest transition. The diamond roughness element has a maximum width of the separated region leading to the widest turbulent wake region far downstream. Furthermore, transition location moves backward as the Mach number increases, which indicates that the compressibility significantly suppresses the roughness-induced boundary layer transition.

  17. Experimental constraints and theoretical bases for microstructural damage in plate boundary shear zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Skemer, P. A.; Cross, A. J.; Bercovici, D.

    2016-12-01

    (Ultra)mylonites from plate boundary shear zones are characterized by severe grain-size reduction and well-mixed mineral phases. The evolution from relatively undeformed tectonite protoliths to highly deformed (ultra)mylonites via the formation of new grain and phase boundaries is described as microstructural `damage.' Microstructural damage is important for two reasons: grain-size reduction is thought to result in significant rheological weakening, while phase mixing inhibits mechanical recovery and preserves the zone of weakness to be reactivated repeatedly throughout the tectonic cycle. Grain-size reduction by dynamic recrystallization has been studied extensively in both geologic and engineered materials, yet the progressive mixing of mineral phases during high pressure/temperature shear - the other essential element of damage or mylonitization - is not well understood. In this contribution we present new experimental results and theory related to two distinct phase mixing processes. First, we describe high strain torsion experiments on calcite and anhydrite mixtures and a simple geometric mixing model related to the stretching and thinning of monophase domains. Second, we describe a grain-switching mechanism that is driven by the surface-tension driven migration of newly formed interphase triple junctions. Unlike dynamic recrystallization, which occurs at relatively small strains, both phase mixing mechanisms described here appear to require extremely large strains, a prediction that is consistent with geologic observations. These data suggest that ductile shear zones experience long, transient intervals of microstructural evolution during which rheology is not at steady state. Microstructural damage may be interpreted as the product of several interconnected physical processes, which are collectively essential to the preservation of long-lived, Earth-like plate tectonics.

  18. Extensive deposits on the Pacific plate from Late Pleistocene North American glacial lake outbursts

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Normark, W.R.; Reid, J.A.

    2003-01-01

    One of the major unresolved issues of the Late Pleistocene catastrophic-flood events in the northwestern United States (e.g., from glacial Lake Missoula) has been what happened when the flood discharge reached the ocean. This study compiles available 3.5-kHz high-resolution and airgun seismic reflection data, long-range sidescan sonar images, and sediment core data to define the distribution of flood sediment in deepwater areas of the Pacific Ocean. Upon reaching the ocean at the mouth of the Columbia River near the present-day upper continental slope, sediment from the catastrophic floods continued flowing downslope as hyperpycnally generated turbidity currents. The turbidity currents resulting from the Lake Missoula and other latest Pleistocene floods followed the Cascadia Channel into and through the Blanco Fracture Zone and then flowed west to the Tufts Abyssal Plain. A small part of the flood sediment, which was stripped off the main flow at a bend in the Cascadia Channel at its exit point from the Blanco Fracture Zone, continued flowing more than 400 km to the south and reached the Escanaba Trough, a rift valley of the southern Gorda Ridge. Understanding the development of the pathway for the Late Pleistocene flood sediment reaching Escanaba Trough provides insight for understanding the extent of catastrophic flood deposits on the Pacific plate.

  19. Fluid flow and heat transfer of carbon nanotubes along a flat plate with Navier slip boundary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khan, W. A.; Khan, Z. H.; Rahi, M.

    2014-06-01

    Homogeneous flow model is used to study the flow and heat transfer of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) along a flat plate subjected to Navier slip and uniform heat flux boundary conditions. This is the first paper on the flow and heat transfer of CNTs along a flat plate. Two types of CNTs, namely, single- and multi-wall CNTs are used with water, kerosene or engine oil as base fluids. The empirical correlations are used for the thermophysical properties of CNTs in terms of the solid volume fraction of CNTs. For the effective thermal conductivity of CNTs, Xue (Phys B Condens Matter 368:302-307, 2005) model has been used and the results are compared with the existing theoretical models. The governing partial differential equations and boundary conditions are converted into a set of nonlinear ordinary differential equations using suitable similarity transformations. These equations are solved numerically using a very efficient finite difference method with shooting scheme. The effects of the governing parameters on the dimensionless velocity, temperature, skin friction, and Nusselt numbers are investigated and presented in graphical and tabular forms. The numerical results of skin friction and Nusselt numbers are compared with the available data for special cases and are found in good agreement.

  20. The memory of the accreting plate boundary and the continuity of fracture zones

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schouten, Hans; Klitgord, Kim D.

    1982-01-01

    A detailed aeromagnetic anomaly map of the Mesozoic seafloor-spreading lineations southwest of Bermuda reveals the dominant magnetic grain of the oceanic crust and the character of the accreting boundary at the time of crustal formation. The magnetic anomaly pattern is that of a series of elongate lobes perpendicular to the fracture zone (flowline) trends. The linear sets of magnetic anomaly peaks and troughs have narrow regions of reduced amplitude anomalies associated with the fracture zones. During the period of Mesozoic geomagnetic polarity reversals (when 1200 km of central North Atlantic seafloor formed), the Atlantic accreting boundary consisted of stationary, elongate, spreading center cells that maintained their independence even though sometimes only minor spatial offsets existed between cells. Normal oceanic crustal structure was formed in the spreading center cells, but structural anomalies and discontinuities characteristic of fracture zones were formed at their boundaries, which parallel flowlines of Mesozoic relative plate motion in the central North Atlantic. We suggest that the memory for a stationary pattern of independent spreading center cells resides in the young brittle lithosphere at the accreting boundary where the lithosphere is weakest; here, each spreading center cell independently goes through its cylce of stress buildup, stress release, and crustal accretion, after which its memory is refreshed. The temporal offset between the peaks of the accretionary activity that takes place within each cell may provide the mechanism for maintaining the independence of adjacent spreading center cells through times when no spatial offset between the cells exists.

  1. Boundary-Layer Bypass Transition Over Large-Scale Bodies

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2016-12-16

    shape of the streamwise velocity profile compared to the flat- plate boundary layer. The research showed that the streamwise wavenumber plays a key role...many works on the suppression of the transitional boundary layer. Most of the results in the literature are for the flat- plate boundary layer but the...behaviour of the velocity and pressure changes with the curvature. This work aims to extend the results of the flat- plate boundary layer to a Rankine

  2. Crustal structure of a transform plate boundary: San Francisco Bay and the central California continental margin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Holbrook, W.S.; Brocher, T.M.; ten Brink, Uri S.; Hole, J.A.

    1996-01-01

    lower-crustal velocity of Pacific oceanic crust suggest that it was underplated by magmatism associated with the nearby Pioneer seamount. The Salinian Block consists of a 15-km-thick layer of velocity 6.0-6.2 km/s overlying a 5-km-thick, high-velocity (7.0 km/s) lower crust that may be oceanic crust, Cretaceous arc-derived lower crust, or a magmatically underplated layer. The strong structural variability across the margin attests to the activity of strike-slip faulting prior to and during development of the transcurrent Pacific/North American plate boundary around 29 Ma. Copyright 1996 by the American Geophysical Union.

  3. Elastostatic stress analysis of orthotropic rectangular center-cracked plates

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gyekenyesi, G. S.; Mendelson, A.

    1972-01-01

    A mapping-collocation method was developed for the elastostatic stress analysis of finite, anisotropic plates with centrally located traction-free cracks. The method essentially consists of mapping the crack into the unit circle and satisfying the crack boundary conditions exactly with the help of Muskhelishvili's function extension concept. The conditions on the outer boundary are satisfied approximately by applying the method of least-squares boundary collocation. A parametric study of finite-plate stress intensity factors, employing this mapping-collocation method, is presented. It shows the effects of varying material properties, orientation angle, and crack-length-to-plate-width and plate-height-to-plate-width ratios for rectangular orthotropic plates under constant tensile and shear loads.

  4. The African and Pacific Superplumes and Thermochemical Piles and Their Relationship to Supercontinent Pangea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhong, S.; Leng, W.; Zhang, N.; McNamara, A. K.

    2008-12-01

    The long-wavelength structure for the present-day Earth's mantle is characterized by circum-Pacific subduction and the antipodal African and Pacific superplumes. The African and Pacific superplumes are anchored on two major thermochemical piles that extend from the core-mantle boundary (CMB) to possibly >500 km above CMB. These two superplumes are where most of large igneous provinces (LIPs) and plume-related volcanism are originated in the last 250 Ma. The thermochemical piles may provide distinct geochemical signatures observed in oceanic island basalts, although it remains controversial whether the piles consist of primordial mantle materials or recycled crust and lithosphere. Geodynamic modeling has demonstrated that the main structural features of the mantle including the circum-Pacific subduction, African and Pacific superplumes, and the thermochemical piles, are closely related to mantle convection associated with plate motion history for the last 120 Ma. However, outstanding questions remain. When did the African and Pacific superplumes and thermochemical piles start to take the current forms? How stable and stationary have they been in the mantle? How are they related to the observations of tectonics and volcanism priori to 120 Ma ago? Our recent studies on long-wavelength mantle convection and supercontinent cycles suggest that the African and Pacific superplumes and thermochemical piles are dynamic features and that they may move laterally in response to mantle flow associated with surface plate motion, such as past subduction and convergence between Laurentia and Gondwana. In particular, our studies suggest that the African superplume and pile did not form until Laurentia and Gondwana collided to form Pangea, while the Pacific anomaly may have been there for a longer time. Our results also suggest that, after lengthy convergence between Laurentia and Gondwana that pushed away the pile materials away from the African hemisphere, later subduction

  5. Tectonics and evolution of the Juan Fernandez microplate at the Pacific-Nazca-Antarctic triple junction

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anderson-Fontana, S.; Larson, R. L.; Engein, J. F.; Lundgren, P.; Stein, S.

    1986-01-01

    Magnetic and bathymetric profiles derived from the R/V Endeavor survey and focal mechanism studies for earthquakes on two of the Juan Fernandez microplate boundaries are analyzed. It is observed that the Nazca-Juan Fernandez pole is in the northern end of the microplate since the magnetic lineation along the East Ridge of the microplate fans to the south. The calculation of the relative motion of the Juan Fernandez-Pacific-Nazca-Antarctic four-plate system using the algorithm of Minster et al. (1974) is described. The development of tectonic and evolutionary models of the region is examined. The tectonic model reveals that the northern boundary of the Juan Fernandez microplate is a zone of compression and that the West Ridge and southwestern boundary are spreading obliquely; the evolutionary model relates the formation of the Juan Fernandez microplate to differential spreading rates at the triple junction.

  6. 3D geometry of a plate boundary fault related to the 2016 Off-Mie earthquake in the Nankai subduction zone, Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsuji, Takeshi; Minato, Shohei; Kamei, Rie; Tsuru, Tetsuro; Kimura, Gaku

    2017-11-01

    We used recent seismic data and advanced techniques to investigate 3D fault geometry over the transition from the partially coupled to the fully coupled plate interface inboard of the Nankai Trough off the Kii Peninsula, Japan. We found that a gently dipping plate boundary décollement with a thick underthrust layer extends beneath the entire Kumano forearc basin. The 1 April 2016 Off-Mie earthquake (Mw6.0) and its aftershocks occurred, where the plate boundary décollement steps down close to the oceanic crust surface. This location also lies beneath the trenchward edge of an older accretionary prism (∼14 Ma) developed along the coast of the Kii peninsula. The strike of the 2016 rupture plane was similar to that of a formerly active splay fault system in the accretionary prism. Thus, the fault planes of the 2016 earthquake and its aftershocks were influenced by the geometry of the plate interface as well as splay faulting. The 2016 earthquake occurred within the rupture area of large interplate earthquakes such as the 1944 Tonankai earthquake (Mw8.1), although the 2016 rupture area was much smaller than that of the 1944 event. Whereas the hypocenter of the 2016 earthquake was around the underplating sequence beneath the younger accretionary prism (∼6 Ma), the 1944 great earthquake hypocenter was close to oceanic crust surface beneath the older accretionary prism. The variation of fault geometry and lithology may influence the degree of coupling along the plate interface, and such coupling variation could hinder slip propagation toward the deeper plate interface in the 2016 event.

  7. DSMC simulations of leading edge flat-plate boundary layer flows at high Mach number

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pradhan, Sahadev

    2016-09-01

    The flow over a 2D leading-edge flat plate is studied at Mach number Ma = (Uinf /√{kBTinf / m }) in the range plate boundary layer at high Mach number. Here, LT is the characteristic dimension, Uinf and Tinf are the free stream velocity and temperature, rhoinf is the free stream density, m is the molecular mass, muinfis the molecular viscosity based on the free stream temperature Tinf , and kB is the Boltzmann constant. The variation of streamwise velocity, temperature, number-density, and mean free path along the wall normal direction away from the plate surface is studied. The qualitative nature of the streamwise velocity at high Mach number is similar to those in the incompressible limit (parabolic profile). However, there are important differences. The amplitudes of the streamwise velocity increase as the Mach number increases and turned into a more flatter profile near the wall. There is significant velocity and temperature slip ((Pradhan and Kumaran, J. Fluid Mech-2011); (Kumaran and Pradhan, J. Fluid Mech-2014)) at the surface of the plate, and the slip increases as the Mach number is increased. It is interesting to note that for the highest Mach numbers considered here, the streamwise velocity at the wall exceeds the sound speed, and the flow is supersonic throughout the flow domain.

  8. Tectonic activity evolution of the Scotia-Antarctic Plate boundary from mass transport deposit analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pérez, Lara F.; Bohoyo, Fernando; Hernández-Molina, F. Javier; Casas, David; Galindo-Zaldívar, Jesús; Ruano, Patricia; Maldonado, Andrés.

    2016-04-01

    The spatial distribution and temporal occurrence of mass transport deposits (MTDs) in the sedimentary infill of basins and submerged banks near the Scotia-Antarctic plate boundary allowed us to decode the evolution of the tectonic activity of the relevant structures in the region from the Oligocene to present day. The 1020 MTDs identified in the available data set of multichannel seismic reflection profiles in the region are subdivided according to the geographic and chronological distributions of these features. Their spatial distribution reveals a preferential location along the eastern margins of the eastern basins. This reflects local deformation due to the evolution of the Scotia-Antarctic transcurrent plate boundary and the impact of oceanic spreading along the East Scotia Ridge (ESR). The vertical distribution of the MTDs in the sedimentary record evidences intensified regional tectonic deformation from the middle Miocene to Quaternary. Intensified deformation started at about 15 Ma, when the ESR progressively replaces the West Scotia Ridge (WSR) as the main oceanic spreading center in the Scotia Sea. Coevally with the WSR demise at about 6.5 Ma, increased spreading rates of the ESR and numerous MTDs were formed. The high frequency of MTDs during the Pliocene, mainly along the western basins, is also related to greater tectonic activity due to uplift of the Shackleton Fracture Zone by tectonic inversion and extinction of the Antarctic-Phoenix Ridge and involved changes at late Pliocene. The presence of MTDs in the southern Scotia Sea basins is a relevant indicator of the interplay between sedimentary instability and regional tectonics.

  9. Links Between Clay Dehydration and Plate Boundary Earthquakes Along the Costa Rica Subduction Megathrust

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lauer, R. M.; Saffer, D. M.; Harris, R. N.

    2016-12-01

    The transformation of smectite to illite is one leading hypothesis to explain the upper transition from stable aseismic slip to seismogenesis along subduction megathrusts, through its influence on both fluid pressure and fault zone frictional properties. Here, we document a well-defined spatial correlation between plate boundary seismicity and smectite transformation at the Costa Rican subduction zone, consistent with the idea that clay transformation and associated silica deposition condition the fault for locking and stick-slip behavior. Previous efforts to explore this relationship have been impeded by a lack of studies that precisely locate seismicity at margins where the thermal structure is well-constrained. We take advantage of new results from Costa Rica that together provide a clear view of both seismicity and thermal conditions on the Middle-America megathrust. These results allow a thorough evaluation of the links between smectite dehydration and fault-slip behavior. We simulate smectite transformation using a kinetic model to assess reaction progress and quantify fluid production at the plate boundary, along 16-transects that span a 500-km length along strike. We find that large (Mw≥7.0) earthquakes are located down-dip of peak fluid production and in regions where the reaction is >50% complete. The earthquake ruptures, however, extend up-dip into the zone of peak reaction. We suggest that silica cementation that accompanies the reaction promotes lithification, embrittlement, and slip-weakening behavior that together enable the initiation of unstable slip, which can then propagate updip into fluid-rich and weak regions of the megathrust that coincide with the peak dehydration window.

  10. Duration of convergence at the Pacific-Gondwana plate margin: insights from accessory phase petrochronology of the Alpine Schist, New Zealand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Briggs, S. I.; Cottle, J. M.; Smit, M. A.; Arnush, N. F.

    2016-12-01

    The timing, duration and along-strike synchroneity of metamorphism and anataxis in the Alpine Schist of New Zealand is a matter of considerable debate. Our preliminary data indicate that metamorphism resulting in garnet growth occurred from 97 - 75 Ma, and anatectic melting occurred from 80 - 51 Ma. These events are contemporaneous with rifting of Zealandia from East Gondwana, and Tasman Sea spreading from 83 - 52 Ma. An important implication of these results is that Late Cretaceous convergence along the Zealandia segment of the Pacific-Gondwana plate margin may have persisted much later than previously thought, and that convergence and extension occurred coevally in adjacent areas. This poses the question: for how long did convergence continue along the Pacific-Gondwana plate margin during East Gondwana breakup? To fully decipher the multiple stages of the complex metamorphic history recorded in the Alpine Schist, we combine Lu-Hf garnet geochronology with U-Th/Pb and REE analyses of zircon and monazite. We use the newly developed `single-shot laser ablation split stream' (SS-LASS) analysis method to obtain depth profiles through 5-10 µm metamorphic zircon overgrowths at 100 nm depth resolution to constrain both the timing and petrological context of discrete metamorphic zircon (re-)crystallization events recorded in the Alpine Schist. We also employ high spatial resolution LASS analysis to target rare 5 - 20 µm monazite in thin section to augment garnet and zircon data. Our multi-accessory phase petrochronology approach is capable of resolving discrete short-duration thermal events, strengthening the geological interpretation of `mean' Lu-Hf garnet ages and discerning between an episodic versus a prolonged history of metamorphism. In addition, comparison with geochronology from anatectic pegmatites clarifies the temporal relationship between metamorphism and melting in the Alpine Schist, while providing direct constraints on the timing and duration of

  11. Lithospheric strength variations as a control on new plate boundaries: examples from the northern Red Sea region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steckler, Michael S.; ten Brink, Uri S.

    1986-08-01

    The complex plate boundary between Arabia and Africa at the northern end of the Red Sea includes the Gulf of Suez rift and the Gulf of Aqaba—Dead Sea transform. Geologic evidence indicates that during the earliest phase of rifting the Red Sea propagated NNW towards the Mediterranean Sea creating the Gulf of Suez. Subsequently, the majority of the relative movement between the plates shifted eastward to the Dead Sea transform. We propose that an increase in the strength of the lithosphere across the Mediterranean continental margin acted as a barrier to the propagation of the rift. A new plate boundary, the Dead Sea transform formed along a zone of minimum strength. We present an analysis of lithospheric strength variations across the Mediterranean continental margin. The main factors controlling these variations are the geotherm, crustal thickness and composition, and sediment thickness. The analysis predicts a characteristic strength profile at continental margins which consists of a marked increase in strength seaward of the hinge zone and a strength minimum landward of the hinge zone. This strength profile also favors the creation of thin continental slivers such as the Levant west of the Dead Sea transform and the continental promontory containing Socotra Island at the mouth of the Gulf of Aden. Calculations of strength variations based on changes of crustal thickness, geotherm and sediment thickness can be extended to other geologic settings as well. They can explain the location of rerifting events at intracratonic basins, of backarc basins and of major continental strike-slip zones.

  12. Validation of High-Speed Turbulent Boundary Layer and Shock-Boundary Layer Interaction Computations with the OVERFLOW Code

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oliver, A. B.; Lillard, R. P.; Blaisdell, G. A.; Lyrintizis, A. S.

    2006-01-01

    The capability of the OVERFLOW code to accurately compute high-speed turbulent boundary layers and turbulent shock-boundary layer interactions is being evaluated. Configurations being investigated include a Mach 2.87 flat plate to compare experimental velocity profiles and boundary layer growth, a Mach 6 flat plate to compare experimental surface heat transfer,a direct numerical simulation (DNS) at Mach 2.25 for turbulent quantities, and several Mach 3 compression ramps to compare computations of shock-boundary layer interactions to experimental laser doppler velocimetry (LDV) data and hot-wire data. The present paper describes outlines the study and presents preliminary results for two of the flat plate cases and two small-angle compression corner test cases.

  13. The role of harzburgite layers in the morphology of subducting plates and the behavior of oceanic crustal layers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoshida, Masaki

    2014-05-01

    Previous numerical studies of mantle convection focusing on subduction dynamics have indicated that the viscosity contrast between the subducting plate and the surrounding mantle have a primary effect on the behavior of subducting plates. The seismically observed plate stagnation at the base of the mantle transition zone (MTZ) under the Western Pacific and Eastern Eurasia is considered to mainly result from a viscosity increase at the ringwoodite to perovskite + magnesiowüstite (Rw→Pv+Mw) phase decomposition boundary, i.e., the boundary between the upper and lower mantle. The harzburgite layer, which is sandwiched between basaltic crust and depleted peridotite (lherzolite) layers, is a key component of highly viscous, cold oceanic plates. However, the possible sensitivity of the effective viscosity of harzburgite layers in the morphology of subducting plates that are flattened in the MTZ and/or penetrated in the lower mantle has not been examined systematically in previous three-dimensional (3D) numerical modeling studies that consider the viscosity increase at the boundary between the upper and lower mantle. In this study, in order to investigate the role of harzburgite layers in the morphology of subducting plates and the behavior of oceanic crustal layers, I performed a series of numerical simulations of mantle convection with semi-dynamic plate subduction in 3D regional spherical-shell geometry. The results show that a buckled crustal layer is observed under the "heel" of the stagnant slab that begins to penetrate into the lower mantle, regardless of the magnitude of the viscosity contrast between the harzburgite layer and the underlying mantle, when the factor of viscosity increase at the boundary of the upper and lower mantle is larger than 60-100. As the viscosity contrast between the harzburgite layer and the underlying mantle increases, the curvature of buckling is larger. When the viscosity increase at the boundary of the upper and lower mantle and the

  14. Unsteady boundary layer flow and heat transfer of a Casson fluid past an oscillating vertical plate with Newtonian heating.

    PubMed

    Hussanan, Abid; Zuki Salleh, Mohd; Tahar, Razman Mat; Khan, Ilyas

    2014-01-01

    In this paper, the heat transfer effect on the unsteady boundary layer flow of a Casson fluid past an infinite oscillating vertical plate with Newtonian heating is investigated. The governing equations are transformed to a systems of linear partial differential equations using appropriate non-dimensional variables. The resulting equations are solved analytically by using the Laplace transform method and the expressions for velocity and temperature are obtained. They satisfy all imposed initial and boundary conditions and reduce to some well-known solutions for Newtonian fluids. Numerical results for velocity, temperature, skin friction and Nusselt number are shown in various graphs and discussed for embedded flow parameters. It is found that velocity decreases as Casson parameters increases and thermal boundary layer thickness increases with increasing Newtonian heating parameter.

  15. Abrupt plate acceleration through oblique rifting: Geodynamic aspects of Gulf of California evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brune, S.

    2016-12-01

    The Gulf of California formed by oblique divergence across the Pacific-North America plate boundary. This presentation combines numerical forward modeling and plate tectonic reconstructions in order to address 2 important aspects of rift dynamics: (1) Plate motions during continental rifting are decisively controlled by the non-linear decay of rift strength. This conclusion is based on a recent plate-kinematic analysis of post-Pangea rift systems (Central Atlantic, South Atlantic, Iberia/Newfoundland, Australia/Antarctica, North Atlantic, South China Sea). In all cases, continental rifting starts with a slow phase followed by an abrupt acceleration within a few My introducing a fast rift phase. Numerical forward modeling with force boundary conditions shows that the two-phase velocity behavior and the rapid speed-up during rifting are intrinsic features of continental rupture that can be robustly inferred for different crust and mantle rheologies. (2) Rift strength depends on the obliquity of the rift system: the force required to maintain a given rift velocity can be computed from simple analytical and more realistic numerical models alike, and both modeling approaches demonstrate that less force is required to perpetuate oblique extension. The reason is that plastic yielding requires a smaller plate boundary force when extension is oblique to the rift trend. Comparing strike slip and pure extension end-member scenarios, it can be shown that about 50% less force is required to deform the lithosphere under strike-slip. This result implies that rift systems involving significant obliquity are mechanically preferred. These two aspects shed new light on the underlying geodynamic causes of Gulf of California rift history. Continental extension is thought to have started in Late Eocene/Oligocene times as part of the southern Basin and Range Province and evolved in a protracted history at low extension rate (≤15 mm/yr). However, with a direction change in Baja

  16. Seamount statistics in the Pacific Ocean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, Deborah K.; Jordan, Thomas H.

    1988-04-01

    We apply the wide-beam sampling technique of Jordan et al. (1983) to approximately 157,000 km of wide-beam profiles to obtain seamount population statistics for eight regions in the eastern and southern Pacific Ocean. Population statistics derived from wide-beam echograms are compared with seamount counts from Sea Beam swaths and with counts from bathymetric maps. We find that the average number of seamounts with summit heights h ≥ H is well-approximated by the exponential frequency-size distribution: ν(H)=νoe-βH. The exponential model for seamount sizes, characterized by the single scale parameter β-1, is found to be superior to a power-law (self-similar) model, which has no intrinsic scale, in describing the average distribution of Pacific seamounts, and it appears to be valid over a size spectrum spanning 5 orders of magnitude in abundance. Large-scale regional variations in seamount populations are documented. We observe significant differences in seamount densities across the Murray fracture zone in the North Pacific and the Eltanin fracture zone system in the South Pacific. The Eltanin discontinuity is equally evident on both sides of the Pacific-Antarctic ridge. In the South Pacific, regions symmetrically disposed about the ridge axis have very similar seamount densities, despite the large difference between Pacific plate and Antarctic plate absolute velocities; evidently, any differences in the shear flows at the base of the Pacific and Antarctic plates do not affect seamount emplacement. Systematic variations in νo and β are observed as a function of lithospheric age, with the number of large seamounts increasing more rapidly than small seamounts. These observations have been used to develop a simple model for seamount production under the assumptions that (1) an exponential size-frequency distribution is maintained, (2) production is steady state, and (3) most small seamounts are formed on or near the ridge axis. The limited data available from

  17. Modeling the Geometry of Plate Boundary and Seismic Structure in the Southern Ryukyu Trench Subduction Zone, Japan, Using Amphibious Seismic Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamamoto, Y.; Takahashi, T.; Ishihara, Y.; Kaiho, Y.; Arai, R.; Obana, K.; Nakanishi, A.; Miura, S.; Kodaira, S.; Kaneda, Y.

    2018-02-01

    Here we present the new model, the geometry of the subducted Philippine Sea Plate interface beneath the southern Ryukyu Trench subduction zone, estimated from seismic tomography and focal mechanism estimation by using passive and active data from a temporary amphibious seismic network and permanent land stations. Using relocated low-angle thrust-type earthquakes, repeating earthquakes, and structural information, we constrained the geometry of plate boundary from the trench axis to a 60 km depth with uncertainties of less than 5 km. The estimated plate geometry model exhibited large variation, including a pronounced convex structure that may be evidence of a subducted seamount in the eastern portion of study area, whereas the western part appeared smooth. We also found that the active earthquake region near the plate boundary, defined by the distance from our plate geometry model, was clearly separated from the area dominated by short-term slow-slip events (SSEs). The oceanic crust just beneath the SSE-dominant region, the western part of the study area, showed high Vp/Vs ratios (>1.8), whereas the eastern side showed moderate or low Vp/Vs (<1.75). We interpreted this as an indication that high fluid pressures near the surface of the slab are contributing to the SSE activities. Within the toe of the mantle wedge, P and S wave velocities (<7.5 and <4.2 km/s, respectively) lower than those observed through normal mantle peridotite might suggest that some portions of the mantle may be at least 40% serpentinized.

  18. The behavior of a convergent plate boundary - Crustal deformation in the South Kanto district, Japan

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Scholz, C. H.; Kato, T.

    1978-01-01

    The northwesternmost part of the Sagami trough, a part of the Philippine Sea-Eurasian plate boundary, was ruptured during the great South Kanto earthquake in 1923. Very extensive and frequent geodetic measurements of crustal deformation have been made in the South Kanto district since the 1890's, and these constitute the most complete data set on crustal movements in the world. These data were reanalyzed and interpreted and according to our interpretation indicate the following sequence of events. The coseismic movements were due to oblique thrust and right lateral slip of about 8 m on a fault outcropping at the base of the Sagami trough. This was followed by postseismic deformation resulting from reversed afterslip of 20-60 cm that occurred at an exponentially decaying rate in time. The interseismic deformation is produced by steady subduction at a rate of about 1.8 cm/yr. During subduction the top 10-15 km of the plate boundary is apparently locked, while deeper parts slip aseismically at an irregular rate. No significant precursory deformation was observed. The recurrence time for 1923 type earthquakes is 200-300 years. The Boso and Miura peninsulas are broken into a series of fault-bound blocks that move semi-independently of the surrounding region. The subduction zone itself, where it is exposed on land, is shown to be a wide zone encompassing several faults that are active at different times.

  19. What controls interplate coupling? Implications from abrupt change in coupling on the Pacific plate across a border between two overlying plates in the southernmost extent of the NE Japan subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Uchida, N.; Hasegawa, A.; Nakajima, J.; Matsuzawa, T.

    2008-12-01

    In the southernmost extent of the NE Japan subduction zone, the Pacific plate (PA) is subducting beneath two different tectonic plates - the North American plate (NA) to the north and the Philippine Sea plate (PH) to the south. The change of overlying plate for the PA provides a good opportunity to test the influence of the overlying plate on interplate coupling. In the present study, detailed location of the border between the PH and NA overlying the PA is estimated from slip vectors of the interplate events. Then we compared the interplate coupling coefficients between the two regions overlain by the two plates based on the small repeating earthquake data. Analysis of slip vectors of interplate events shows that the slip vectors abruptly change their slip angles off Kanto. This suggests that the location of the border between the two overlying plates is extending northwestward from the triple junction. The distribution of interplate coupling coefficient estimated from the cumulative slip of small repeating earthquakes reveals a distinct change from south (ca. 0.3) to north (ca. 0.7) across this border. This border corresponds to the southern limit of M > 7 earthquakes and intense seismicity along the Japan Trench, again indicating the stronger coupling to the north. We also investigated the structure of the overlying plates from seismic tomography using a large number of travel-time data obtained from the nationwide seismograph network. The results reveal a distinct low-velocity zone just above the PA in the region overlain by the PH, whereas there is no low-velocity zone in the region overlain by the NA. These observations imply that the overlying plate controls large-scale coupling at the plate interface. Acknowledgement: We used waveforms from the seismic networks of University of Tokyo in addition to the data from Tohoku University. Arrival time data for seismic tomography and earthquake relocation are provided by the Japan Metrological Agency.

  20. Post-rift Tectonic History of the Songliao Basin, NE China: Cooling Events and Post-rift Unconformities Driven by Orogenic Pulses From Plate Boundaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Song, Ying; Stepashko, Andrei; Liu, Keyu; He, Qingkun; Shen, Chuanbo; Shi, Bingjie; Ren, Jianye

    2018-03-01

    The classic lithosphere-stretching model predicts that the post-rift evolution of extensional basin should be exclusively controlled by decaying thermal subsidence. However, the stratigraphy of the Songliao Basin in northeastern China shows that the post-rift evolution was punctuated by multiple episodes of uplift and exhumation events, commonly attributed to the response to regional tectonic events, including the far-field compression from plate margins. Three prominent tectonostratigraphic post-rift unconformities are recognized in the Late Cretaceous strata of the basin: T11, T03, and T02. The subsequent Cenozoic history is less constrained due to the incomplete record of younger deposits. In this paper, we utilize detrital apatite fission track (AFT) thermochronology to unravel the enigmatic timing and origin of post-rift unconformities. Relating the AFT results to the unconformities and other geological data, we conclude that in the post-rift stage, the basin experienced a multiepisodic tectonic evolution with four distinct cooling and exhumation events. The thermal history and age pattern document the timing of the unconformities in the Cretaceous succession: the T11 unconformity at 88-86 Ma, the T03 unconformity at 79-75 Ma, and the T02 unconformity at 65-50 Ma. A previously unrecognized Oligocene unconformity is also defined by a 32-24 Ma cooling event. Tectonically, all the cooling episodes were regional, controlled by plate boundary stresses. We propose that Pacific dynamics influenced the wider part of eastern Asia during the Late Cretaceous until Cenozoic, whereas the far-field effects of the Neo-Tethys subduction and collision processes became another tectonic driver in the later Cenozoic.

  1. Irregular earthquake recurrence patterns and slip variability on a plate-boundary Fault

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wechsler, N.; Rockwell, T. K.; Klinger, Y.

    2015-12-01

    The Dead Sea fault in the Levant represents a simple, segmented plate boundary from the Gulf of Aqaba northward to the Sea of Galilee, where it changes its character into a complex plate boundary with multiple sub-parallel faults in northern Israel, Lebanon and Syria. The studied Jordan Gorge (JG) segment is the northernmost part of the simple section, before the fault becomes more complex. Seven fault-crossing buried paleo-channels, offset by the Dead Sea fault, were investigated using paleoseismic and geophysical methods. The mapped offsets capture the long-term rupture history and slip-rate behavior on the JG fault segment for the past 4000 years. The ~20 km long JG segment appears to be more active (in term of number of earthquakes) than its neighboring segments to the south and north. The rate of movement on this segment varies considerably over the studied period: the long-term slip-rate for the entire 4000 years is similar to previously observed rates (~4 mm/yr), yet over shorter time periods the rate varies from 3-8 mm/yr. Paleoseismic data on both timing and displacement indicate a high COV >1 (clustered) with displacement per event varying by nearly an order of magnitude. The rate of earthquake production does not produce a time predictable pattern over a period of 2 kyr. We postulate that the seismic behavior of the JG fault is influenced by stress interactions with its neighboring faults to the north and south. Coulomb stress modelling demonstrates that an earthquake on any neighboring fault will increase the Coulomb stress on the JG fault and thus promote rupture. We conclude that deriving on-fault slip-rates and earthquake recurrence patterns from a single site and/or over a short time period can produce misleading results. The definition of an adequately long time period to resolve slip-rate is a question that needs to be addressed and requires further work.

  2. Impact of Ship Emissions on Marine Boundary Layer NO(x) and SO2 Distributions over the Pacific Basin

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Davis, D. D.; Grodzinsky, G.; Kasibhatla, P.; Crawford, J.; Chen, G.; Liu, S.; Bandy, A.; Thornton, D.; Guan, H.; Sandholm, S.

    2001-01-01

    The impact of ship emissions on marine boundary layer (MBL) NO(x) and SO2 levels over the Pacific Ocean has been explored by comparing predictions (with and without ships) from a global chemical transport model (GCTM) against compiled airborne observations of MBL NO(x) and SO2. For latitudes above 15 N, which define that part of the Pacific having the heaviest shipping, this analysis revealed significant model over prediction for NOx and a modest under prediction for SO2 when ship emissions were considered. Possible reasons for the difference in NO(x) and SO2 were explored using a full-chemistry box model. These results revealed that for an actual plume setting the NO(x) lifetime could be greatly shortened by chemical processes promoted by ship plume emissions themselves. Similar chemical behavior was not found for SO2.

  3. Plate tectonics, damage and inheritance.

    PubMed

    Bercovici, David; Ricard, Yanick

    2014-04-24

    The initiation of plate tectonics on Earth is a critical event in our planet's history. The time lag between the first proto-subduction (about 4 billion years ago) and global tectonics (approximately 3 billion years ago) suggests that plates and plate boundaries became widespread over a period of 1 billion years. The reason for this time lag is unknown but fundamental to understanding the origin of plate tectonics. Here we suggest that when sufficient lithospheric damage (which promotes shear localization and long-lived weak zones) combines with transient mantle flow and migrating proto-subduction, it leads to the accumulation of weak plate boundaries and eventually to fully formed tectonic plates driven by subduction alone. We simulate this process using a grain evolution and damage mechanism with a composite rheology (which is compatible with field and laboratory observations of polycrystalline rocks), coupled to an idealized model of pressure-driven lithospheric flow in which a low-pressure zone is equivalent to the suction of convective downwellings. In the simplest case, for Earth-like conditions, a few successive rotations of the driving pressure field yield relic damaged weak zones that are inherited by the lithospheric flow to form a nearly perfect plate, with passive spreading and strike-slip margins that persist and localize further, even though flow is driven only by subduction. But for hotter surface conditions, such as those on Venus, accumulation and inheritance of damage is negligible; hence only subduction zones survive and plate tectonics does not spread, which corresponds to observations. After plates have developed, continued changes in driving forces, combined with inherited damage and weak zones, promote increased tectonic complexity, such as oblique subduction, strike-slip boundaries that are subparallel to plate motion, and spalling of minor plates.

  4. Spatial variations in the nature of the oceanic plate in the northwestern Pacific margin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fujie, G.; Kodaira, S.; Shirai, T.; Dannowski, A.; Thorwart, M.; Grevemeyer, I.; Morgan, J. P.; Miura, S.

    2016-12-01

    formed, indicating that the oceanic plate in the NW Pacific margin, the input to the northeastern Japanese island arc, is more complicated here than we previously thought.In this presentation, we will show an overview of the Vp model along the whole profile and detailed seismic structure beneath the petit-spot area derived by the P-to-S converted waves.

  5. Seismicity of the Earth 1900-2013 offshore British Columbia-southeastern Alaska and vicinity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hayes, Gavin P.; Smoczyk, Gregory M.; Ooms, Jonathan G.; McNamara, Daniel E.; Furlong, Kevin P.; Benz, Harley M.; Villaseñor, Antonio

    2014-01-01

    The tectonics of the Pacific margin of North America between Vancouver Island and south-central Alaska are dominated by the northwest motion of the Pacific plate with respect to the North America plate at a velocity of approximately 50 mm/yr. In the south of this mapped region, convergence between the northern extent of the Juan de Fuca plate (also known as the Explorer microplate) and North America plate dominate. North from the Explorer, Pacific, and North America plate triple junction, Pacific:North America motion is accommodated along the ~650-km-long Queen Charlotte fault system. Offshore of Haida Gwaii and to the southwest, the obliquity of the Pacific:North America plate motion vector creates a transpressional regime, and a complex mixture of strike-slip and convergent (underthrusting) tectonics. North of the Haida Gwaii islands, plate motion is roughly parallel to the plate boundary, resulting in almost pure dextral strike-slip motion along the Queen Charlotte fault. To the north, the Queen Charlotte fault splits into multiple structures, continuing offshore of southwestern Alaska as the Fairweather fault, and branching east into the Chatham Strait and Denali faults through the interior of Alaska. The plate boundary north and west of the Fairweather fault ultimately continues as the Alaska-Aleutians subduction zone, where Pacific plate lithosphere subducts beneath the North America plate at the Aleutians Trench. The transition is complex, and involves intraplate structures such as the Transition fault. The Pacific margin offshore British Columbia is one of the most active seismic zones in North America and has hosted a number of large earthquakes historically.

  6. East Pacific Rise at lat 19°S: Evidence for a recent ridge jump

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morton, Janet L.; Ballard, Robert D.

    1986-02-01

    A detailed ANGUS (Acoustically Navigated Geological Undersea Surveyor) photographic and bathymetric survey of the East Pacific Rise (EPR) near lat 19°S reveals a small jump of the ridge axis to the west. The axial block in this region consists of two parallel ridges 3 km apart and separated by a 200-m-deep valley. South of lat 19°06‧S the plate boundary is a single, narrow (<1 km) ridge. The eastern ridge near lat 19°S is shallower than the western ridge and is morphologically a continuation of the narrow, active ridge axis to the south. ANGUS photographs along both ridges and in the intervening valley, however, show that the western ridge is the currently active plate boundary. We suggest that spreading shifted westward from the eastern ridge to its present position within the past 40 000 yr. The EPR in the general region has been characterized by asymmetric spreading for the past 2.4 m.y. The sense of the ridge jump near lat 19°S is consistent with the asymmetric spreading, which could have been produced by a series of such jumps.

  7. Geometry and structure of the pull-apart basins developed along the western South American-Scotia plate boundary (SW Atlantic Ocean)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Esteban, F. D.; Tassone, A.; Isola, J. I.; Lodolo, E.; Menichetti, M.

    2018-04-01

    The South American-Scotia plate boundary is a left-lateral fault system which runs roughly E-W for more than 3000 km across the SW Atlantic Ocean and the Tierra del Fuego Island, reaching to the west the southern Chile Trench. Analyses of a large dataset of single- and multi-channel seismic reflection profiles acquired offshore has allowed to map the trace of the plate boundary from Tierra del Fuego to the Malvinas Trough, a tectonic depression located in the eastern part of the fault system, and to reconstruct the shape and geometry of the basins formed along the principal displacement zone of the fault system. Three main Neogene pull-apart basins that range from 70 to 100 km in length, and from 12 to 22 km in width, have been identified along this segment of the plate boundary. These basins have elongated shapes with their major axes parallel to the ENE-WSW direction of the fault zone. The sedimentary architecture and the infill geometry of the basins suggest that they represent mostly strike-slip dominated transtension basins which propagated from E to W. The basins imaged by seismic data show in some cases geometrical and structural features linked to the possible reactivation of previous wedge-top basins and inherited structures pertaining to the external front of the Magallanes fold-and-thrust compression belt, along which the South American-Scotia fault system has been superimposed. It is suggested that the sequence of the elongated basins occur symmetrically to a thorough going strike-slip fault, in a left-stepping geometrical arrangement, in a manner similar to those basins seen in other transcurrent environments.

  8. Anomalous Buckling Characteristics of Laminated Metal-Matrix Composite Plates with Central Square Holes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ko, William L.

    1998-01-01

    Compressive buckling analysis was performed on metal-matrix composite (MMC) plates with central square holes. The MMC plates have varying aspect ratios and hole sizes and are supported under different boundary conditions. The finite-element structural analysis method was used to study the effects of plate boundary conditions, plate aspect ratio, hole size, and the composite stacking sequence on the compressive buckling strengths of the perforated MMC plates. Studies show that by increasing the hole sizes, compressive buckling strengths of the perforated MMC plates could be considerably increased under certain boundary conditions and aspect ratios ("anomalous" buckling behavior); and that the plate buckling mode could be symmetrical or antisymmetrical, depending on the plate boundary conditions, aspect ratio, and the hole size. For same-sized plates with same-sized holes, the compressive buckling strengths of the perforated MMC plates with [90/0/0/90]2 lamination could be as much as 10 percent higher or lower than those of the [45/- 45/- 45/45]2 laminations, depending on the plate boundary conditions, plate aspect ratios, and the hole size. Clamping the plate edges induces far stronger "anomalous" buckling behavior (enhancing compressive buckling strengths at increasing hole sizes) of the perforated MMC plates than simply supporting the plate edges.

  9. New Evidence for Quaternary Strain Partitioning Along the Queen Charlotte Fault System, Southeastern Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walton, M. A. L.; Miller, N. C.; Brothers, D. S.; Kluesner, J.; Haeussler, P. J.; Conrad, J. E.; Andrews, B. D.; Ten Brink, U. S.

    2017-12-01

    The Queen Charlotte Fault (QCF) is a fast-moving ( 53 mm/yr) transform plate boundary fault separating the Pacific Plate from the North American Plate along western Canada and southeastern Alaska. New high-resolution bathymetric data along the fault show that the QCF main trace accommodates nearly all strike-slip plate motion along a single narrow deformation zone, though questions remain about how and where smaller amounts of oblique convergence are accommodated along-strike. Obliquity and convergence rates are highest in the south, where the 2012 Haida Gwaii, British Columbia MW 7.8 thrust earthquake was likely caused by Pacific underthrusting. In the north, where obliquity is lower, aftershocks from the 2013 Craig, Alaska MW 7.5 strike-slip earthquake also indicate active convergent deformation on the Pacific (west) side of the plate boundary. Off-fault structures previously mapped in legacy crustal-scale seismic profiles may therefore be accommodating part of the lesser amounts of Quaternary convergence north of Haida Gwaii. Between 2015 and 2017, the USGS acquired more than 8,000 line-km of offshore high-resolution multichannel seismic (MCS) data along the QCF to better understand plate boundary deformation. The new MCS data show evidence for Quaternary deformation associated with a series of elongate ridges located within 30 km of the QCF main trace on the Pacific side. These ridges are anticlinal structures flanked by growth faults, with recent deformation and active fluid flow characterized by seafloor scarps and seabed gas seeps at ridge crests. Structural and morphological evidence for contractional deformation decreases northward along the fault, consistent with a decrease in Pacific-North America obliquity along the plate boundary. Preliminary interpretations suggest that plate boundary transpression may be partitioned into distinctive structural domains, in which convergent stress is accommodated by margin-parallel thrust faulting, folding, and ridge

  10. GPS and seismological constraints on active tectonics and arc-continent collision in Papua New Guinea: Implications for mechanics of microplate rotations in a plate boundary zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wallace, Laura M.; Stevens, Colleen; Silver, Eli; McCaffrey, Rob; Loratung, Wesley; Hasiata, Suvenia; Stanaway, Richard; Curley, Robert; Rosa, Robert; Taugaloidi, Jones

    2004-05-01

    The island of New Guinea is located within the deforming zone between the Pacific and Australian plates that converge obliquely at ˜110 mm/yr. New Guinea has been fragmented into a complex array of microplates, some of which rotate rapidly about nearby vertical axes. We present velocities from a network of 38 Global Positioning System (GPS) sites spanning much of the nation of Papua New Guinea (PNG). The GPS-derived velocities are used to explain the kinematics of major tectonic blocks in the region and the nature of strain accumulation on major faults in PNG. We simultaneously invert GPS velocities, earthquake slip vectors on faults, and transform orientations in the Woodlark Basin for the poles of rotation of the tectonic blocks and the degree of elastic strain accumulation on faults in the region. The data are best explained by six distinct tectonic blocks: the Australian, Pacific, South Bismarck, North Bismarck, and Woodlark plates and a previously unrecognized New Guinea Highlands Block. Significant portions of the Ramu-Markham Fault appear to be locked, which has implications for seismic hazard determination in the Markham Valley region. We also propose that rapid clockwise rotation of the South Bismarck plate is controlled by edge forces initiated by the collision between the Finisterre arc and the New Guinea Highlands.

  11. On the relationship between tectonic plates and thermal mantle plume morphology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lenardic, A.; Kaula, W. M.

    1993-01-01

    Models incorporating plate-like behavior, i.e., near uniform surface velocity and deformation concentrated at plate boundaries, into a convective system, heated by a mix of internal and basal heating and allowing for temperature dependent viscosity, were constructed and compared to similar models not possessing plate-like behavior. The simplified numerical models are used to explore how plate-like behavior in a convective system can effect the lower boundary layer from which thermal plumes form. A principal conclusion is that plate-like behavior can significantly increase the temperature drop across the lower thermal boundary layer. This temperature drop affects the morphology of plumes by determining the viscosity drop across the boundary layer. Model results suggest that plumes on planets possessing plate-like behavior, e.g., the Earth, may differ in morphologic type from plumes on planets not possessing plate-like behavior, e.g., Venus and Mars.

  12. Plate tectonics of the Mediterranean region.

    PubMed

    McKenzie, D P

    1970-04-18

    The seismicity and fault plane solutions in the Mediterranean area show that two small rapidly moving plates exist in the Eastern Mediterranean, and such plates may be a common feature of contracting ocean basins. The results show that the concepts of plate tectonics apply to instantaneous motions across continental plate boundaries.

  13. Possible microplate generation at RRR triple junctions due to the non-circular finite motion of plates relative to each other

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cronin, V. S.

    2012-12-01

    First generation ideas of the kinematic stability of triple junctions lead to the common belief that the geometry of ridge-ridge-ridge (RRR) triple junctions remains constant over time under conditions of symmetric spreading. Given constant relative motion between each plate pair -- that is, the pole of plate relative motion is fixed to both plates in each pair during finite motion, as assumed in many accounts of plate kinematics -- there would be no boundary mismatch at the triple junction and no apparent kinematic reason why a microplate might develop there. But if, in a given RRR triple junction, the finite motion of one plate as observed from the other plate is not circular (as is generally the case, given the three-plate problem of plate kinematics), the geometry of the ridges and the triple junction will vary with time (Cronin, 1992, Tectonophys 207, 287-301). To explore the possible consequences of non-circular finite motion between plates at an RRR triple junction, a simple model was coded based on the cycloid finite-motion model (e.g., Cronin, 1987, Geology 15, 1006-1009) using NNR-MORVEL56 velocities for individual plates (Argus et al., 2011, G3 12, doi: 10.1029/2011GC003751). Initial assumptions include a spherical Earth, symmetric spreading, and constant angular velocities during the modeled finite time interval. The assumed-constant angular velocity vectors constitute a reference frame for observing finite plate motion. Typical results are [1] that the triple junction migrates relative to a coordinate system fixed to the angular-velocity vectors, [2] ridge axes rotates relative to each other, and [3] a boundary mismatch develops at the synthetic triple junction that might result in microplate nucleation. In a model simulating the Galapagos triple junction between the Cocos, Nazca and Pacific plates whose initial state did not include the Galapagos microplate, the mismatch gap was as much as ~3.4 km during 3 Myr of model displacement (see figure). The

  14. Earthquakes and submarine volcanism in the Northeast Pacific: Exploration in the time domain based on 21-years of hydroacoustic monitoring

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hammond, S. R.; Dziak, R. P.; Fox, C. G.

    2012-12-01

    Monitoring of regional seismic activity in the Northeast Pacific has been accomplished for the past 21 years using US Navy's Sound Surveillance System (SOSUS) hydrophone arrays. Seafloor seismic activity in this region occurs along the spreading center and transform boundaries between the Juan de Fuca, Pacific and North American plates. During the time span, from 1991 through 2011, nearly 50,000 earthquakes were detected and located. The majority of these events were associated with these tectonic boundaries but sections of several plate boundaries were largely aseismic during the this time span. While most of the earthquakes were associated with geological structures revealed in bathymetric maps of the region, there were also less easily explained intraplate events including a swarm of events within the interior of the southern portion of the Juan de Fuca plate. The location and sequential timing of events on portions of the plate boundaries also suggests ordered patterns of stress release. Among the most scientifically significant outcomes of acoustic monitoring was the discovery that deep seafloor magmatic activity can be accompanied by intense (> 1000 events/day) earthquake swarms. The first swarm detected by SOSUS, in 1993, was confirmed to have been associated with an extrusive volcanic eruption which occurred along a segment of the Juan de Fuca spreading center. Notably, this was the first deep spreading center eruption detected, located, and studied while it was active. Subsequently, two more swarms were confirmed to have been associated with volcanic eruptions, one on the Gorda spreading center in 1996 and the other at Axial volcano in 1998. One characteristic of these swarm events is migration of their earthquake locations 10s of km along the ridge axis tracking the movement of magma down-rift. The most rapid magma propagation events have been shown to be associated with seafloor eruptions and dramatic, transient changes in hydrothermal circulation as

  15. Plate deformation at depth under northern California: Slab gap or stretched slab?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    ten Brink, Uri S.; Shimizu, N.; Molzer, P.C.

    1999-01-01

    Plate kinematic interpretations for northern California predict a gap in the underlying subducted slab caused by the northward migration of the Pacific-North America-Juan de Fuca triple junction. However, large-scale decompression melting and asthenospheric upwelling to the base of the overlying plate within the postulated gap are not supported by geophysical and geochemical observations. We suggest a model for the interaction between the three plates which is compatible with the observations. In this 'slab stretch' model the Juan de Fuca plate under coastal northern California deforms by stretching and thinning to fill the geometrical gap formed in the wake of the northward migrating Mendocino triple junction. The stretching is in response to boundary forces acting on the plate. The thinning results in an elevated geothermal gradient, which may be roughly equivalent to a 4 Ma oceanic lithosphere, still much cooler than that inferred by the slab gap model. We show that reequilibration of this geothermal gradient under 20-30 km thick overlying plate can explain the minor Neogene volcanic activity, its chemical composition, and the heat flow. In contrast to northern California, geochemical and geophysical consequences of a 'true' slab gap can be observed in the California Inner Continental Borderland offshore Los Angeles, where local asthenospheric upwelling probably took place during the Miocene as a result of horizontal extension and rotation of the overlying plate. The elevated heat flow in central California can be explained by thermal reequilibration of the stalled Monterey microplate under the Coast Ranges, rather than by a slab gap or viscous shear heating in the mantle.

  16. The African and Pacific Superplume Structures Constrained by Assembly and Breakup of Pangea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, N.; Zhong, S.; Leng, W.; Li, Z.

    2009-12-01

    Seismic tomography studies indicate that the Earth’s mantle structure is characterized by African and Pacific seismically slow velocity anomalies (i.e., superplumes) and circum-Pacific seismically fast anomalies (i.e., a globally spherical harmonic degree-2 structure). McNamara and Zhong (2005) have demonstrated that the African and Pacific superplume structures result from dynamic interaction between mantle convection and surface plate motion history in the last 120 Ma. However, their models produce slightly stronger degree 3 structure than degree 2 near the CMB. Here, we construct a proxy model of plate motions for the African hemisphere for the last 450 Ma since the Early Paleozoic using the paleogeographic reconstruction of continents constrained by paleomagnetic and geological observations. Using this proxy model for plate motion history as the time-dependent surface boundary conditions for a 3-dimensional spherical model of thermochemical mantle convection, we calculate the present-day mantle structure and explore the evolution of mantle structures since the Early Paleozoic. Our model calculations reproduce well the present-day mantle structure including the African and Pacific superplumes. The power spectra of our calculated present-day temperature field shows that the strongest power occurs at degree 2 in the lower mantle while in the upper mantle the strongest power is at degree 3. The degree correlation between tomography model S20RTS and our calculated temperature field shows a high correlation at the degree 1 and degree 2 in the lower mantle while the upper mantle and the short wavelength structures do not correlate well. The summed degree correlation for the lower mantle shows a relatively good correlation for the bottom 300 km of the mantle but the correlation is significantly reduced at depth 600 km above the CMB. For the evolution of mantle structures, we focus on the evolution of the African superplume. Our results suggest that the mantle in the

  17. Active faults and minor plates in NE Asia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kozhurin, Andrey I.; Zelenin, Egor A.

    2014-05-01

    Stated nearly 40 yr ago the uncertainty with plate boundaries location in NE Asia (Chapman, Solomon, 1976) still remains unresolved. Based on the prepositions that a plate boundary must, first, reveal itself in linear sets of active structures, and, second, be continuous and closed, we have undertaken interpretation of medium-resolution KH-9 Hexagon satellite imageries, mostly in stereoscopic regime, for nearly the entire region of NE Asia. Main findings are as follows. There are two major active fault zones in the region north of the Bering Sea. One of them, the Khatyrka-Vyvenka zone, stretches NE to ENE skirting the Bering Sea from the Kamchatka isthmus to the Navarin Cape. Judging by the kinematics of the Olyutorsky 2006 earthquake fault, the fault zones move both right-laterally and reversely. The second active fault zone, the Lankovaya-Omolon zone, starts close to the NE margin of the Okhotsk Sea and extends NE up to nearly the margin of the Chukcha Sea. The fault zone is mostly right-lateral, with topographically expressed cumulative horizontal offsets amounting to 2.5-2.6 km. There may be a third NE-SW zone between the major two coinciding with the Penzhina Range as several active faults found in the southern termination of the Range indicate. The two active fault zones divide the NE Asia area into two large domains, which both could be parts of the Bering Sea plate internally broken and with uncertain western limit. Another variant implies the Khatyrka-Vyvenka zone as the Bering Sea plate northern limit, and the Lankovaya-Omolon zone as separating an additional minor plate from the North-American plate. The choice is actually not crucial, and more important is that both variants leave the question of where the Bering Sea plate boundary is in Alaska. The Lankovaya-Omolon zone stretches just across the proposed northern boundary of the Okhorsk Sea plate. NW of the zone, there is a prominent left-lateral Ulakhan fault, which is commonly interpreted to be a

  18. Comments on ``seismic properties of the Eltanin transform system, south Pacific'' by Emile A. Okal and Amy R. Langenhorst

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wessel, Paul; Kroenke, Loren W.

    2001-03-01

    Seismicity in the Eltanin transform system region reflects the current relative motion between the Pacific and Antarctica plates. As such, the seismicity provides little or no constraints on models for late Neogene Pacific absolute plate motion changes that in turn forced a synchronous change in relative plate motions resulting in the current relative plate motion.

  19. Changes in Flat Plate Wake Characteristics Obtained With Decreasing Plate Thickness

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rai, Man Mohan

    2016-01-01

    The near and very near wake of a flat plate with a circular trailing edge is investigated with data from direct numerical simulations. Computations were performed for four different Reynolds numbers based on plate thickness (D) and at constant plate length. The value of ?/D varies by a factor of approximately 20 in the computations (? being the boundary layer momentum thickness at the trailing edge). The separating boundary layers are turbulent in all the cases. One objective of the study is to understand the changes in wake characteristics as the plate thickness is reduced (increasing ?/D). Vortex shedding is vigorous in the low ?/D cases with a substantial decrease in shedding intensity in the largest ?/D case (for all practical purposes shedding becomes almost intermittent). Other characteristics that are significantly altered with increasing ?/D are the roll-up of the detached shear layers and the magnitude of fluctuations in shedding period. These effects are explored in depth. The effects of changing ?/D on the distributions of the time-averaged, near-wake velocity statistics are discussed.

  20. Subduction Drive of Plate Tectonics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamilton, W. B.

    2003-12-01

    Don Anderson emphasizes that plate tectonics is self-organizing and is driven by subduction, which rights the density inversion generated as oceanic lithosphere forms by cooling of asthenosphere from the top. The following synthesis owes much to many discussions with him. Hinge rollback is the key to kinematics, and, like the rest of actual plate behavior, is incompatible with bottom-up convection drive. Subduction hinges (which are under, not in front of, thin leading parts of arcs and overriding plates) roll back into subducting plates. The Pacific shrinks because bounding hinges roll back into it. Colliding arcs, increasing arc curvatures, back-arc spreading, and advance of small arcs into large plates also require rollback. Forearcs of overriding plates commonly bear basins which preclude shortening of thin plate fronts throughout periods recorded by basin strata (100 Ma for Cretaceous and Paleogene California). This requires subequal rates of advance and rollback, and control of both by subduction. Convergence rate is equal to rates of rollback and advance in many systems but is greater in others. Plate-related circulation probably is closed above 650 km. Despite the popularity of concepts of plumes from, and subduction into, lower mantle, there is no convincing evidence for, and much evidence against, penetration of the 650 in either direction. That barrier not only has a crossing-inhibiting negative Clapeyron slope but also is a compositional boundary between fractionated (not "primitive"), sluggish lower mantle and fertile, mobile upper mantle. Slabs sink more steeply than they dip. Slabs older than about 60 Ma when their subduction began sink to, and lie down on and depress, the 650-km discontinuity, and are overpassed, whereas younger slabs become neutrally buoyant in mid-upper mantle, into which they are mixed as they too are overpassed. Broadside-sinking old slabs push all upper mantle, from base of oceanic lithosphere down to the 650, back under

  1. Reconstructing the Cenozoic evolution of the mantle: Implications for mantle plume dynamics under the Pacific and Indian plates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Glišović, Petar; Forte, Alessandro M.

    2014-03-01

    The lack of knowledge of the initial thermal state of the mantle in the geological past is an outstanding problem in mantle convection. The resolution of this problem also requires the modelling of 3-D mantle evolution that yields maximum consistency with a wide suite of geophysical constraints. Quantifying the robustness of the reconstructed thermal evolution is another major concern. To solve and estimate the robustness of the time-reversed (inverse) problem of mantle convection, we analyse two different numerical techniques: the quasi-reversible (QRV) and the backward advection (BAD) methods. Our investigation extends over the 65 Myr interval encompassing the Cenozoic era using a pseudo-spectral solution for compressible-flow thermal convection in 3-D spherical geometry. We find that the two dominant issues for solving the inverse problem of mantle convection are the choice of horizontally-averaged temperature (i.e., geotherm) and mechanical surface boundary conditions. We find, in particular, that the inclusion of thermal boundary layers that yield Earth-like heat flux at the top and bottom of the mantle has a critical impact on the reconstruction of mantle evolution. We have developed a new regularisation scheme for the QRV method using a time-dependent regularisation function. This revised implementation of the QRV method delivers time-dependent reconstructions of mantle heterogeneity that reveal: (1) the stability of Pacific and African ‘large low shear velocity provinces’ (LLSVP) over the last 65 Myr; (2) strong upward deflections of the CMB topography at 65 Ma beneath: the North Atlantic, the south-central Pacific, the East Pacific Rise (EPR) and the eastern Antarctica; (3) an anchored deep-mantle plume ascending directly under the EPR (Easter and Pitcairn hotspots) throughout the Cenozoic era; and (4) the appearance of the transient Reunion plume head beneath the western edge of the Deccan Plateau at 65 Ma. Our reconstructions of Cenozoic mantle

  2. Kinematic signature of India/Australia plates break-up

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iaffaldano, G.; Bunge, H.

    2008-12-01

    The paradigm of Plate Tectonics states that the uppermost layer of the Earth is made of a number of quasi- rigid blocks moving at different rates in different directions, while most of the deformation is focused along their boundaries. Perhaps one of the most interesting and intriguing processes in Plate Tectonics is the generation of new plate boundaries. The principle of inertia implies that any such event would invariably trigger changes in plate motions, because the budget of mantle basal-drag and plate-boundary forces would be repartitioned. A recent episode is thought to have occurred in the Indian Ocean, where a variety of evidences - including localized seismicity along the Nienty East Ridge, compression-generated unconformities of ocean-floor sediments, and identified paleomagnetic isochrones - suggest the genesis of a boundary separating the India and Australia plates. Here we use global numerical models of the coupled mantle/lithosphere system to show for the first time that an event of separation between India and Australia, having occurred sometime between 11 and 8 Myrs ago, has left a distinct signature in the observed record of plate motions. Specifically, while motions of India and Australia relative to fixed Eurasia are almost indistinguishable prior to 11 Myrs ago, their convergence to Eurasia since then differs significantly, by as much as 2 cm/yr. Finally, we speculate about possible causes for the separation between India and Australia plates.

  3. Kinematic signature of India/Australia plates break-up

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iaffaldano, G.; Bunge, H.-P.

    2009-04-01

    The paradigm of Plate Tectonics states that the uppermost layer of the Earth is made of a number of quasi-rigid blocks moving at different rates in different directions, while most of the deformation is focused along their boundaries. Perhaps one of the most interesting and intriguing processes in Plate Tectonics is the generation of new plate boundaries. The principle of inertia implies that any such event would invariably trigger changes in plate motions, because the budget of mantle basal-drag and plate-boundary forces would be repartitioned. A recent episode is thought to have occurred in the Indian Ocean, where a variety of evidences - including localized seismicity along the Nienty East Ridge, compression-generated unconformities of ocean-floor sediments, and identified paleomagnetic isochrones - suggest the genesis of a boundary separating the India and Australia plates. Here we use global numerical models of the coupled mantle/lithosphere system to show for the first time that an event of separation between India and Australia, having occurred sometime between 11 and 8 Myrs ago, has left a distinct signature in the observed record of plate motions. Specifically, while motions of India and Australia relative to fixed Eurasia are almost indistinguishable prior to 11 Myrs ago, their convergence to Eurasia since then differs significantly, by as much as 2 cm/yr. Finally, we speculate about possible causes for the separation between India and Australia plates.

  4. Heterogeneous distribution of pelagic sediments incoming the Japan Trench possibly controlling slip propagation on shallow plate boundary fault

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamaguchi, A.; Nakamura, Y.; Fukuchi, R.; Kurano, H.; Ikehara, K.; Kanamatsu, T.; Arai, K.; Usami, K.; Ashi, J.

    2017-12-01

    Catastrophic tsunami of the 2011 Tohoku Earthquake was triggered by large coseismic slip reached to the Japan Trench axis (e.g. Fujiwara et al., 2011, Science; Kodaira et al., 2012, Nature Geoscience). Results of the IODP Expedition 343 (JFAST) suggest that small friction of smectite-rich pelagic clay caused slip propagation on shallow plate boundary fault (Ujiie et al., 2013, Science; Kameda et al., 2015, Geology; Moore et al., 2015, Geosphere). On the other hand, JAMSTEC high-resolution seismic profiles show that incoming sediments have large heterogeneities in thicknesses, and two areas of extremely thin sediments on the Pacific Plate (thickness less than 100 m) were found at around 39°N (Nakamura et al., AGU 2017, this session). To reconcile whether the smectite-rich pelagic clay even exists in these areas, we sampled surface sediments during the R/V Shinsei Maru KS-15-3 cruise. Seven piston cores were retrieved from seaward trench slope, horst, graben, and graben edge. Core lithologies are mainly diatomaceous ooze/clay including tephra layers, not resemble to pelagic clays discovered in JFAST. Ages of tephra layers were estimated by correlating mineral assemblages and refractive indices of volcanic glasses to Japanese widespread tephras. Averaged sedimentation rates of seaward trench slope, horst, graben, and graben edge are estimated to be 25-30, 6.5-20, 45, 0.9 cm/kyr, respectively. These sedimentation rates imply that sediments on seaward trench slope and horst have been deposited in the last 160-500 kyr, suggesting that entire pelagic sediments, including smectite-rich pelagic clay, have been removed by some reasons in the last 0.5 million years. Possible reason for such mod