The History and Dynamics of Global Plate Motions

The History and Dynamics of Global Plate Motions

Editor(s): Mark A. Richards, Richard G. Gordon, Rob D. Van Der Hilst

Published Online: 19 MAR 2013

Print ISBN: 9780875909790

Online ISBN: 9781118668535

DOI: 10.1029/GM121

About this Book

Published by the American Geophysical Union as part of the Geophysical Monograph Series, Volume 121.

The new global tectonics that emerged three decades ago profoundly changed our view of the Earth and its evolution. Although the theory of plate tectonics gives a kinematic description of much of Earth's surface motions, our dynamical understanding remains incomplete and unsatisfactory in many ways. Key remaining issues include the mechanics of plate boundaries and intraplate deformation, the relation between plate-scale dynamics and hotspot volcanism, vertical surface motions (dynamic topography) associated with subduction, and the origin of the plate-tectonic style of convection itself. The past two decades have seen fairly steady progress on a number of these problems, spurred in large part by the advent of 3-D seismic imaging of the Earth's interior. More recently, advances in high performance computing have provided long-needed 3-D geodynamic modeling tools that are yielding new insights into the relation between mantle convection and plate tectonics, and the interpretation of seismic heterogeneity structure.

Table of contents

    1. You have free access to this content
    2. What the Mantle Sees: The Effects of Continents on Mantle Heat Flow (pages 95–112)

      A. Lenardic, L. Guillou-Frottier, J.-C. Mareschal, C. Jaupart, L.-N. Moresi and W. M. Kaula

    3. Mesozoic/Cenozoic Tectonic Events Around Australia (pages 161–188)

      R. Dietmar Müller, Carmen Gaina, Anahita Tikku, Dona Mihut, Steven C. Cande and Joann M. Stock