Arctic Seafloor Structure and Tectonic Evolution

  1. M.W. McEIhinny and
  2. D.A. Valencio
  1. J. F. Sweeney

Published Online: 15 MAR 2013

DOI: 10.1029/GD002p0055

Paleoreconstruction of the Continents

Paleoreconstruction of the Continents

How to Cite

Sweeney, J. F. (1981) Arctic Seafloor Structure and Tectonic Evolution, in Paleoreconstruction of the Continents (eds M.W. McEIhinny and D.A. Valencio), American Geophysical Union, Washington, D. C.. doi: 10.1029/GD002p0055

Author Information

  1. Earth Physics Branch, Department of Energy, Mines and Resources, Ottawa, Canada K1A 0Y3

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 MAR 2013
  2. Published Print: 1 JAN 1981

Book Series:

  1. Geodynamics Series

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780875905112

Online ISBN: 9781118670217



  • Free air gravity;
  • Geophysical and geological data;
  • Seafloor structure;
  • Sediments;
  • Seismicity;
  • Tectonic evolution


The age and present structure of much of the Arctic Basin has remained a mystery largely because of the unusual nature of many features of the seafloor and the lack of adequate geophysical data coverage over most of the ocean. This situation is rapidly changing as the results of several recent Arctic geophysical studies become known. It is now believed the Arctic Basin was created during Early Cretaceous time by the rotation of northern Alaska and the Chukotsk Peninsula away from northern Canada. The rotation may have been initiated by stress produced in the Arctic by the opening of the North Atlantic Ocean. Geophysical and geological evidence from Arctic Canada and north of Alaska suggests that the North American margin of Canada Basin was created by rifting during Early Cretaceous time.