The subglacial geology of Wilkes Land, East Antarctica

Aitken, A.R.A.; Young, D.A.; Ferraccioli, F. ORCID:; Betts, P.G.; Greenbaum, J.S.; Richter, T.G.; Roberts, J.L.; Blankenship, D.D.; Siegert, M.J.. 2014 The subglacial geology of Wilkes Land, East Antarctica. Geophysical Research Letters, 41 (7). 2390-2400.

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Wilkes Land is a key region for studying the configuration of Gondwana and for appreciating the role of tectonic boundary conditions on East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS) behavior. Despite this importance, it remains one of the largest regions on Earth where we lack a basic knowledge of geology. New magnetic, gravity and subglacial topography data allow the region's first comprehensive geological interpretation. We map lithospheric domains and their bounding faults, including the suture between Indo-Antarctica and Australo-Antarctica. Furthermore, we image subglacial sedimentary basins, including the Aurora and Knox Subglacial Basins, and the previously unknown Sabrina Subglacial Basin. Commonality of structure in magnetic, gravity and topography data suggest that pre-EAIS tectonic features are a primary control on subglacial topography. The preservation of this relationship after glaciation suggests that these tectonic features provide topographic and basal boundary conditions that have strongly influenced the structure and evolution of the EAIS.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
Programmes: BAS Programmes > Polar Science for Planet Earth (2009 - ) > Environmental Change and Evolution
ISSN: 00948276
Additional Keywords: East Antarctica, Gondwana, Columbia, Rodinia, East Antarctic Ice Sheet
Date made live: 25 Mar 2014 14:09 +0 (UTC)

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