Ranero Cesar R.

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Cesar R.

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  • Preprint
    Geomorphology and Neogene tectonic evolution of the Palomares continental margin (Western Mediterranean)
    ( 2016-03) Gomez de la Peña, Laura ; Gracia, Eulalia ; Munoz, Araceli ; Acosta, Juan ; Gomez-Ballesteros, María ; Ranero, Cesar R. ; Uchupi, Elazar
    The Palomares continental margin is located in the southeastern part of Spain. The margin main structure was formed during Miocene times, and it is currently part of the wide deformation zone characterizing the region between the Iberian and African plates, where no well-defined plate boundary occurs. The convergence between these two plates is here accommodated by several structures, including the left lateral strike-slip Palomares Fault. The region is characterized by sparse, low to moderate magnitude (Mw < 5.2) shallow instrumental earthquakes, although large historical events have also occurred. To understand the recent tectonic history of the margin we analyze new high-resolution multibeam bathymetry data and re-processed three multichannel seismic reflection profiles crossing the main structures. The analysis of seafloor morphology and associated subsurface structure provides new insights of the active tectonic features of the area. In contrast to other segments of the southeastern Iberian margin, the Palomares margin contains numerous large and comparatively closely spaced canyons with heads that reach near the coast. The margin relief is also characterized by the presence of three prominent igneous submarine ridges that include the Aguilas, Abubacer and Maimonides highs. Erosive processes evidenced by a number of scars, slope failures, gullies and canyon incisions shape the present-day relief of the Palomares margin. Seismic images reveal the deep structure distinguishing between Miocene structures related to the formation of the margin and currently active features, some of which may reactivate inherited structures. The structure of the margin started with an extensional phase accompanied by volcanic accretion during the Serravallian, followed by a compressional pulse that started during the Latemost Tortonian. Nowadays, tectonic activity offshore is subdued and limited to few, minor faults, in comparison with the activity recorded onshore. The deep Algero-Balearic Basin is affected by surficial processes, associated to halokinesis of Messinian evaporites.
  • Article
    Structure of the mantle beneath the Alboran Basin from magnetotelluric soundings
    (John Wiley & Sons, 2015-12-19) Garcia, Xavier ; Seille, H. ; Elsenbeck, James R. ; Evans, Rob L. ; Jegen, Marion ; Holz, Sebastian ; Ledo, Juanjo ; Lovatini, Andrea ; Marti, Anna ; Marcuello, Alejandro ; Queralt, Pilar ; Ungarelli, Carlo ; Ranero, Cesar R.
    We present results of marine MT acquisition in the Alboran sea that also incorporates previously acquired land MT from southern Spain into our analysis. The marine data show complex MT response functions with strong distortion due to seafloor topography and the coastline, but inclusion of high resolution topography and bathymetry and a seismically defined sediment unit into a 3-D inversion model has allowed us to image the structure in the underlying mantle. The resulting resistivity model is broadly consistent with a geodynamic scenario that includes subduction of an eastward trending plate beneath Gibraltar, which plunges nearly vertically beneath the Alboran. Our model contains three primary features of interest: a resistive body beneath the central Alboran, which extends to a depth of ∼150 km. At this depth, the mantle resistivity decreases to values of ∼100 Ohm-m, slightly higher than those seen in typical asthenosphere at the same depth. This transition suggests a change in slab properties with depth, perhaps reflecting a change in the nature of the seafloor subducted in the past. Two conductive features in our model suggest the presence of fluids released by the subducting slab or a small amount of partial melt in the upper mantle (or both). Of these, the one in the center of the Alboran basin, in the uppermost-mantle (20–30 km depth) beneath Neogene volcanics and west of the termination of the Nekkor Fault, is consistent with geochemical models, which infer highly thinned lithosphere and shallow melting in order to explain the petrology of seafloor volcanics.