Combined Multifactor Evidence of a Giant Lower-Mantle Ring Structure below the Eastern Mediterranean

Lev Eppelbaum, Zvi Ben-Avraham, Youri Katz, Sierd Cloetingh, Mikhail Kaban

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In the Arabian-Northern African region, interaction of the Nubian, Arabian and Eurasian plates and many small tectonic units is conspicuous. In order to better understand this interaction, we use satellite derived gravity data (retracked to the Earth’s surface) recognized now as a powerful tool for tectono-geodynamic zonation. We applied the polynomial approximation to the gravity data which indicated the presence of a large, deep ring structure in the eastern Mediterranean centered below the Island of Cyprus. Quantitative analysis of residual gravity anomaly provides an estimate of the deep anomalous body’s upper edge at a depth of about 1700 km. Computations of the residual gravity anomalies for the lower mantle also indicate presence of anomalous sources. The GPS vector pattern coinciding with the gravity trend implies counter clockwise rotation of this structure. Independent analyses of the geoid isolines map and seismic tomography data support the existence of a deep anomaly. Paleomagnetic data analysis from the surrounding regions confirms a counter clockwise rotation. Numerous petrological, mineralogical, geodynamical and tectonic data suggest a relation between this deep structure and near-surface processes. This anomaly sheds light on a number of phenomena including the Cyprus gravity anomaly, counter clockwise rotation of the Mesozoic terrane belt and asymmetry of basins along continental transform faults.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-32
Number of pages22
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2020


  • Satellite gravity
  • Geodynamics
  • Tectonics
  • Paleomagnetism
  • GPS
  • Integrated analysis


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