The Jan Mayen microcontinent's Cenozoic stratigraphic succession and structural evolution within the NE-Atlantic

Anett Blischke, Martyn S. Stoker, Bryndís Brandsdóttir, John R. Hopper, Gwenn Peron-Pinvidic, Jana Ólavsdóttir, Peter Japsen

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Cenozoic seismic-stratigraphic units of the Jan Mayen microcontinent (JMMC) are presented in context with kinematic modelling of plate reorganisation correlation with conjugate margins, and their chrono-stratigraphic correlations. Our model of development of the microcontinent, from continental breakup to present-day, is based on the interpretation of new and legacy geological and geophysical data. From these data, we have established eleven Cenozoic seismic-stratigraphic units (JM-70 to JM-01) separated by ten locally varying unconformities and disconformities, six of which are regional and reflect discrete tectonostratigraphic phases in the evolution of the Jan Mayen region. These six main phases are: (1) pre-breakup Paleocene (>55 Ma) extension represented by seismic unit JM-70, which comprises terrigenous and marine sedimentary rocks and a thick plateau basalt volcanic succession; (2) Early Eocene (∼55-52 Ma) syn-breakup (rift-to-drift) represented by seismic unit JM-60 and comprises a mix of intrusive igneous rocks, subaerial lavas and hyaloclastites, and non-marine to shallow-marine sedimentary rocks; (3) Early to Mid-Eocene (∼52-43 Ma) syn-breakup (rift-to-drift) and rift-transfer across the Iceland plateau rift, represented by seismic unit JM-50 that comprises volcanic rocks and shelf-margin deltaic sediment succession; (4) Late Eocene – Early Oligocene (43-30 Ma) ridge transfer and tectonic re-arrangement in proximity of the Iceland hotspot represented in the rock record by shallow-to deep-marine deposits preserved as units JM-40, JM-35, and JM-30; (5) in the Late Oligocene (30-22 Ma), a second breakup occurred along the western JMMC igneous margin, together with the formation of the south-western Jan Mayen igneous province, the proto-Kolbeinsey ridge, and the initiation of proto-Iceland all, of which, is represented in the rock record by seismic units JM-20 and JM-15; and, (6) Miocene-to-present-day separation of the JMMC from East Greenland (since 22 Ma), which is represented by seismic units JM-10, JM-05, and JM-01 that reflect a general deepening of the microcontinent.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)702-737
Number of pages36
JournalMarine and Petroleum Geology
Publication statusPublished - May 2019


  • Cenozoic
  • Dual-breakup
  • Hiatus
  • Iceland plateau
  • Jan Mayen microcontinent
  • Kinematic model
  • Seismic stratigraphy
  • Unconformity

Programme Area

  • Programme Area 3: Energy Resources


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