plate tectonics

What controls Victoria microplate rotation in the East African Rift?

Lake Magadi, Kenya.

This week in News & Views, Anne Glerum, postdoc at GFZ Potsdam, discusses how her numerical models support a lithosphere-driven mechanism for the rotation of large continental microplates, like Victoria in the East African Rift System. The East African Rift System (EARS) is a newly forming divergent boundary between the Nubian and Somalian plates (Fig. 1). The plate boundary system includes se ...[Read More]

Understanding intraplate earthquakes

Understanding intraplate earthquakes

  One of the basic tenets of plate tectonics states that deformation occurs along plate boundaries while plate interiors remain almost undeformed. Intraplate earthquakes  defy this principle and hence are quite enigmatic.  In this week’s News and Views, Prof. Attreyee Ghosh from the Centre for Earth Sciences, Indian Institute of Science, tries to explain the reasons behind intraplate ea ...[Read More]

Can plume-lithosphere interaction initiate a modern subduction zone?

Plume-induced subduction inititation?

This week in News & Views, dr. Marzieh Baes from GFZ Potsdam introduces us to the mechanisms behind subduction initiation. Moreover, she discusses the different types of subduction initiation in reaction to plume-lithosphere interaction that she observed in her recent 3-d numerical modelling study. Possible scenarios of subduction initiation According to plate tectonics, oceanic plates are for ...[Read More]

What controlled the evolution of Plate Tectonics on Earth?

Great Unconformity - Immensity River, Grand Canyon

Plate tectonics is a key geological process on Earth, shaping its surface, and making it unique among the planets in the Solar System. Yet, how plate tectonics emerged and which factors controlled its evolution remain controversial. The recently published paper in Nature by Sobolev and Brown suggests new ideas to solve this problem…. What makes plate tectonics possible on contemporary Earth? It is ...[Read More]