Stress distribution over the Mozambique Ridge

Vladimir Lyakhovsky, Zvi Ben-Avraham, Margaret Reznikov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The Mozambique Ridge is an aseismic oceanic plateau in the southwestern Indian Ocean. During the separation of Antarctica and South Africa in the Early Cretaceous, the Mozambique Ridge was segmented by fracture zones which were assumed to become inactive during the Cenomanian, when Africa and Antarctica were finally separated. However, the existence of active normal faulting in the central part of the Mozambique Ridge was demonstrated by single and multichannel seismic surveys. Numerical modelling of the stress distribution caused by the crustal structure of the Mozambique Ridge and the adjacent oceanic basins suggests the possible existence of a zone with average horizontal tension up to 70 MPa along the central part of this passive ridge, which may cause the modern fault activity. These stresses also cause an additional dynamic anomaly which can explain small variations of the geoid anomaly over the ridge.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)21-27
Number of pages7
JournalTectonophysics
Volume240
Issue number1-4
DOIs
StatePublished - 30 Dec 1994

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