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Evidence for slab material under Greenland and links to Cretaceous High Arctic magmatism

By G. E. Shephard, R. G. Trønnes, W. Spakman, I. Panet and C. Gaina


Understanding the evolution of extinct ocean basins through time and space demands the integration of surface kinematics and mantle dynamics. We explore the existence, origin, and implications of a proposed oceanic slab burial ground under Greenland through a comparison of seismic tomography, slab sinking rates, regional plate reconstructions, and satellite-derived gravity gradients. Our preferred interpretation stipulates that anomalous, fast seismic velocities at 1000-1600 km depth imaged in independent global tomographic models, coupled with gravity gradient perturbations, represent paleo-Arctic oceanic slabs that subducted in the Mesozoic. We suggest a novel connection between slab-related arc mantle and geochemical signatures in some of the tholeiitic and mildly alkaline magmas of the Cretaceous High Arctic Large Igneous Province in the Sverdrup Basin. However, continental crustal contributions are noted in these evolved basaltic rocks. The integration of independent, yet complementary, data sets provides insight into present-day mantle structure, magmatic events, and relict oceans

Topics: Amerasia Basin, Arctic, Greenland, slab, subduction, tectonics, Earth and Planetary Sciences(all), Geophysics
Year: 2016
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