Neotectonics and Quaternary Fault-reactivation in Europe's Intraplate Lithosphere

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9780080446875: Neotectonics and Quaternary Fault-reactivation in Europe's Intraplate Lithosphere

The EU funded interdisciplinary Environmental Tectonics research program ENTEC has led to new insights into the strength distribution of Europe's intraplate lithosphere, and its relationship with the localization of intraplate deformation and associated vertical motions. Pronounced lateral variations in Europe's intraplate strength occur, as a result of recent thermal perturbation in the underlying mantle and inherited inhomogeneity in lithospheric structures, as a result of Europe's polyphase pre-Quaternary evolution.

Results are presented from quantitative subsidence analysis studies, and constraints by geothermochronology, pointing to pronounced acceleration in differential vertical motions and associated topography development in intraplate Europe. These results demonstrate the vulnerability of Europe's lithosphere to neotectonic activity documented by detailed studies in the three natural laboratories of the ENTEC program: (1) the Lower Rhine Graben (LRG), (2) the Upper Rhine Graben (URG), and (3) the Vienna Basin (VB).

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