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Major Australian-Antarctic Plate Reorganization at Hawaiian-Emperor Bend Time
journal contributionposted on 2023-05-17, 17:31 authored by Joanne WhittakerJoanne Whittaker, Muller, RD, Leitchenkov, G, Stagg, H, Sdrolias, M, Gaina, C, Goncharov, A
A marked bend in the Hawaiian-Emperor seamount chain supposedly resulted from a recent major reorganization of the plate-mantle system there 50 million years ago. Although alternative mantledriven and plate-shifting hypotheses have been proposed, no contemporaneous circum-Pacific plate events have been identified. We report reconstructions for Australia and Antarctica that reveal a major plate reorganization between 50 and 53 million years ago. Revised Pacific Ocean sea-floor reconstructions suggest that subduction of the Pacific-Izanagi spreading ridge and subsequent Marianas/Tonga-Kermadec subduction initiation may have been the ultimate causes of these events. Thus, these plate reconstructions solve long-standing continental fit problems and improve constraints on the motion between East and West Antarctica and global plate circuit closure.
Department/SchoolInstitute for Marine and Antarctic Studies
PublisherAmer Assoc Advancement Science
Place of publication1200 New York Ave, Nw, Washington, USA, Dc, 20005
Rights statementCopyright 2007 AAAS