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From grains of volcanic glass to continental rifting: New Geosphere articles now online
Date:2/11/2013

fault slip during the Pliocene that extends from latitude ~40 degrees N to ~36 degrees N within the ECSZ-WLB and along the western margin of the Basin and Range Province. This regional deformation episode may be related to changes in gravitational potential energy. This paper is part of the "Origin and Evolution of the Sierra Nevada and Walker Lane" series.


Experimental modeling of rifting at craton margins
Giacomo Corti et al., Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (CNR), Istituto di Geoscienze e Georisorse, U.O. Firenze, Via G. La Pira, 4, 50121 Florence, Italy. Posted online 11 Jan. 2013; now part of the Feb. 2013 issue, http://geosphere.gsapubs.org/content/9/1/138.abstract.

Continental rifting is one of the most important geodynamic processes that shape our planet: During its evolution, lithospheric plates are torn apart and broken, and -- eventually -- a new oceanic basin is formed in between. Yet, the dynamics by which continental extension is progressively focused to form mid oceanic ridges is not well understood, especially when the process occurs at the margins of the strongest portions of the continents, the old cratonic areas. Continental rifts, such as the system of rift valleys in East Africa, Lake Baikal, or the basins that characterize large portion of the Antarctic plate, represent typical examples of these conditions, where the juxtaposition between the old, cold, and resistant lithosphere and an adjacent weaker domain is likely to influence the architecture and evolution of the extension-related deformation. In this study by Giacomo Corti and colleagues, centimeter-scale analog models are used to reproduce and analyze in the laboratory this large-scale geological process, providing results of important relevance for improving our knowledge of development of continental rifts at the margins of old, strong cratonic areas.

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Contact: Kea Giles
kgiles@geosociety.org
Geological Society of America
Source:Eurekalert

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