Controls of subducting slab dip and age on the extensional versus compressional deformation in the overriding plate

Ritabrata Dasgupta, Nibir Mandal, Changyeol Lee

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6 Citations (Scopus)


Oceanic plate subduction can exert extensional, compressional or both types of deformations simultaneously in overriding plates. In this study, we explore the factors controlling these two competing modes of deformation in response to contrasting stress fields. Two-dimensional computational fluid dynamics models are presented to show that the dip and age of subducting slabs are crucial parameters to modulate the extensional versus compressional deformations. Shallow-dipping (< 30°) and/or young (< 60 Myr) subducting slabs favor compressional tectonics to form an orogenic wedge (accretionary type), whereas steeply dipping (> 45°) and/or old (> 60 Myr) slabs facilitate extensional tectonics, expressed as a back-arc basin (non-accretionary type). We validate the parametric analysis by comparing our model results with the observed modes of overriding plate deformation in natural subduction zones.

Original languageEnglish
Article number228716
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Feb 20

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank Dr. Arthur Bauville, two anonymous reviewers and Editor Dr. Kelin Wang – for their insightful comments and suggestions at various stages to improve the present study. We thank Dr. Collin J. Grant, Shell, UK for his help in improving the English language of our manuscript. This work is a part of RD's doctoral thesis. RD gratefully acknowledges the University Grants Commission, India, for providing a fellowship. NM thanks the SERB, Department of Science and Technology, India, for the J. C. Bose Fellowship. CL is supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (Grant: 2017R1A6A1A07015374 and 2019R1A2C1002517 ) and Yonsei University Research Fund of 2019-22-0010 . All the data are available from the corresponding author upon request.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Elsevier B.V.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geophysics
  • Earth-Surface Processes


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