A review of the NE Atlantic conjugate margins based on seismic refraction data

Thomas Funck, Ögmundur Erlendsson, Wolfram H. Geissler, Sofie Gradmann, Geoffrey S. Kimbell, Kenneth McDermott, Uni K. Petersen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter in bookResearchpeer-review

42 Citations (Scopus)


The NE Atlantic region evolved through several rift episodes, leading to break-up in the Eocene that was associated with voluminous magmatism along the conjugate margins of East Greenland and NW Europe. Existing seismic refraction data provide good constraints on the overall tectonic development of the margins, despite data gaps at the NE Greenland shear margin and the southern Jan Mayen microcontinent. The maximum thickness of the initial oceanic crust is 40 km at the Greenland-Iceland-Faroe Ridge, but decreases with increasing distance to the Iceland plume. High-velocity lower crust interpreted as magmatic underplating or sill intrusions is observed along most margins but disappears north of the East Greenland Ridge and the Lofoten margin, with the exception of the Vestbakken Volcanic Province at the SW Barents Sea margin. South of the narrow Lofoten margin, the European side is characterized by wide margins. The opposite trend is seen in Greenland, with a wide margin in the NE and narrow margins elsewhere. The thin crust beneath the basins is generally underlain by rocks with velocities of > 7 kms -1 interpreted as serpentinized mantle in the Porcupine and southern Rockall basins; while off Norway, alternative interpretations such as eclogite bodies and underplating are also discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe NE Atlantic Region
Subtitle of host publicationA Reappraisal of Crustal Structure, Tectonostratigraphy and Magmatic Evolution
EditorsG. Péron-Pinvidic, J.R. Hopper, T. Funck, M.S. Stoker, C. Gaina, J.C. Doornenbal, U.E. Árting
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherGeological Society of London
Number of pages35
ISBN (Print)978-1-78620-278-9
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Publication series

SeriesGeological Society Special Publications

Programme Area

  • Programme Area 3: Energy Resources


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