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Research project

Determining the 3D structure of the west Galicia rifted margin

Project overview

Continental breakup occurs by stretching and thinning of the lithosphere. At some rifted margins, the style of deformation changes at high degrees of extension to one dominated by motion along low-angle detachment faults. Seismic profiles available before this project demonstrated that the deformation is highly three- dimensional, but were insufficient to determine the nature of this 3D deformation. To determine how this final phase of continental extension occurs, we conducted a 3D combined reflection and wide-angle seismic experiment on the west Galicia margin, which is characterised by crust thinning to less than 3 km, well-defined fault blocks, probable detachment and polyphase faulting, but virtually no magmatism or thick sediment piles to obscure the structures and the amount of extension.


Lead researcher

Professor Tim Minshull

Professor in Ocean & Earth Science

Research interests

  • Continental breakup and the onset of seafloor spreading
  • Methane hydrate beneath the seafloor and its role in the Earth system
  • Exploration geophysics: seismic and electromagnetic imaging
Other researchers

Professor Jonathan Bull

Professor in Ocean & Earth Science

Research interests

  • Fluid Flow and Carbon Capture and Storage
  • Monitoring, Measurement and Verification
  • Marine Geophysics

Collaborating research institutes, centres and groups

Research outputs

Bhargav Boddupalli,
Joanna Morgan,
Gaye Bayrakci,
& Dirk Klaeschen
, 2021 , Geophysical Journal International , 227 (1) , 228--256
Type: article
Gaël Lymer,
Derren J.f. Cresswell,
Tim J. Reston,
Dale S. Sawyer,
Julia K. Morgan,
Carl Stevenson,
Annabel Causer,
& Donna J. Shillington
, 2019 , Earth and Planetary Science Letters , 515 , 90--99
Type: article
C. Nur Schuba,
Gary G. Gray,
Julia K. Morgan,
Dale S. Sawyer,
Donna J. Shillington,
Tim J. Reston,
& Brian E. Jordan
, 2018 , Earth and Planetary Science Letters , 492 , 232--238
Type: article
C. Chen,
L. Watremez,
M. Prada,
R. Edwards,
B. O’Reilly,
T. Reston,
G. Wagner,
V. Gaw,
D. Klaschen,
& P. Shannon
, 2018 , Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth
Type: article
Richard, Gareth Davy,
Joanna V. Morgan,
Gaye Bayrakci,
Dirk Klaeschen,
T.J. Reston,
Dale S. Sawyer,
Gael Lymer,
& Derren Cresswell
, 2017 , Geophysical Journal International
Type: article
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