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Tibetan and Indian lithospheres in the upper mantle beneath Tibet: Evidence from broadband surface-wave dispersion

Tibetan and Indian lithospheres in the upper mantle beneath Tibet: Evidence from broadband surface-wave dispersion
Tibetan and Indian lithospheres in the upper mantle beneath Tibet: Evidence from broadband surface-wave dispersion
Broadband seismic experiments over the last two decades have produced dense data coverage across Tibet. Yet, the mechanism of the India-Asia lithospheric convergence beneath it remains a puzzle, with even its basic features debated and with very different end-member models advocated today. We measured highly accurate Rayleigh- and Love-wave phase-velocity curves in broad period ranges (up to 5–200 s) for a few tens of pairs and groups of stations across Tibet, combining, in each case, hundreds to thousands of interstation measurements made with cross-correlation and waveform-inversion methods. Robust shear-velocity profiles were then determined by extensive series of nonlinear inversions of the data, designed to constrain the depth-dependent ranges of isotropic-average shear speeds and radial anisotropy. Temperature anomalies in the upper mantle were estimated from shear velocities using accurate petrophysical relationships. Our results reveal strong heterogeneity in the upper mantle beneath Tibet. Very large high-velocity anomalies in the upper mantle are consistent with the presence of underthrust (beneath southwestern Tibet) and subducted (beneath central and eastern Tibet) Indian lithosphere. The corresponding thermal anomalies match those estimated for subducted Indian lithosphere. In contrast to the Indian lithosphere, Tibetan lithosphere and asthenosphere display low-to-normal shear speeds; Tibetan lithosphere is thus warm and thin. Radial anisotropy in the upper mantle is weak in central and strong in northeastern Tibet, possibly reflecting asthenospheric flow above the subducting Indian lithospheric slab.
Tibetan, Indian, lithosphere, subduction, shear speed, upper mantle
1525-2027
4260-4281
Agius, Matthew R.
cb168c8d-0926-4c0d-951c-721fb4cf1ebf
Lebedev, Sergei
f6d20961-82f2-4faa-a66b-3951bb33c634
Agius, Matthew R.
cb168c8d-0926-4c0d-951c-721fb4cf1ebf
Lebedev, Sergei
f6d20961-82f2-4faa-a66b-3951bb33c634

Agius, Matthew R. and Lebedev, Sergei (2013) Tibetan and Indian lithospheres in the upper mantle beneath Tibet: Evidence from broadband surface-wave dispersion. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 14 (10), 4260-4281. (doi:10.1002/ggge.20274).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Broadband seismic experiments over the last two decades have produced dense data coverage across Tibet. Yet, the mechanism of the India-Asia lithospheric convergence beneath it remains a puzzle, with even its basic features debated and with very different end-member models advocated today. We measured highly accurate Rayleigh- and Love-wave phase-velocity curves in broad period ranges (up to 5–200 s) for a few tens of pairs and groups of stations across Tibet, combining, in each case, hundreds to thousands of interstation measurements made with cross-correlation and waveform-inversion methods. Robust shear-velocity profiles were then determined by extensive series of nonlinear inversions of the data, designed to constrain the depth-dependent ranges of isotropic-average shear speeds and radial anisotropy. Temperature anomalies in the upper mantle were estimated from shear velocities using accurate petrophysical relationships. Our results reveal strong heterogeneity in the upper mantle beneath Tibet. Very large high-velocity anomalies in the upper mantle are consistent with the presence of underthrust (beneath southwestern Tibet) and subducted (beneath central and eastern Tibet) Indian lithosphere. The corresponding thermal anomalies match those estimated for subducted Indian lithosphere. In contrast to the Indian lithosphere, Tibetan lithosphere and asthenosphere display low-to-normal shear speeds; Tibetan lithosphere is thus warm and thin. Radial anisotropy in the upper mantle is weak in central and strong in northeastern Tibet, possibly reflecting asthenospheric flow above the subducting Indian lithospheric slab.

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Agius_et_al-2013-Geochemistry,_Geophysics,_Geosystems.pdf - Version of Record
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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 18 September 2013
e-pub ahead of print date: 2 October 2013
Published date: 17 October 2013
Keywords: Tibetan, Indian, lithosphere, subduction, shear speed, upper mantle
Organisations: Geology & Geophysics

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 388018
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/388018
ISSN: 1525-2027
PURE UUID: 7a2d58af-f422-42d9-8c66-f836b089c83b

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Date deposited: 17 Feb 2016 16:12
Last modified: 19 Jul 2019 20:17

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