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TitleDigital isochrons of the world's ocean floor
AuthorMüller, R D; Roest, W R; Royer, J Y; Gahagan, L M; Sclater, J G
SourceJournal of Geophysical Research vol. 102, no. B2, 1997 p. 3211-3214, Open Access logo Open Access
Alt SeriesGeological Survey of Canada, Contribution Series 1996353
Mediapaper; on-line; digital
File formatpdf
AreaWorld oceans
Lat/Long WENS-180.0000 180.0000 90.0000 -90.0000
Subjectstectonics; marine geology; isochrons; oceanic crust; tectonic elements; tectonic interpretations; tectonic setting; plate boundaries; Cenozoic; Quaternary; Tertiary; Cretaceous; Jurassic
Illustrationssketch maps
Released1997 02 10
AbstractWe have created a digital age grid of the ocean floor with a grid node interval of 6 arc min using a self-consistent set of global isochrons and associated plate reconstruction poles. The age at each grid node was determined by linear interpolation between adjacent isochrons in the direction of spreading. Ages for ocean floor between the oldest identified magnetic anomalies and continental crust were interpolated by estimating the ages of passive continental margin segments from geological data and published plate models. We have constructed an age grid with error estimates for each grid cell as a function of (1) the error of ocean floor ages identified from magnetic anomalies along ship tracks and the age of the corresponding grid cells in our age grid, (2) the distance of a given grid cell to the nearest magnetic anomaly identification, and (3) the gradient of the age grid: i.e., larger errors are associated with high age gradients at fracture zones or other age discontinuities. Future applications of this digital grid include studies of the thermal and elastic structure of the lithosphere, the heat loss of the Earth, ridge-push forces through time, asymmetry of spreading, and providing constraints for seismic tomography and mantle convection models.

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