Problematic plate reconstruction
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As has been previously proposed, Bronner et al. suggest that opening of the rift between Newfoundland and Iberia involved exhumation of mantle rocks until 112 million years ago, subsequent seafloor spreading, and crustal thickening along the high-amplitude J magnetic anomaly by magma that propagated from the Southeast Newfoundland Ridge area. Conventionally, the anomalous magnetism and basement ridges associated with the J anomaly north of the Newfoundland-Gibraltar Fracture Zone are thought to have formed about 125 million years ago at chron M0 (Fig. 1a), although the crust probably experienced some later magmatic overprinting. The M0 age would make their formation simultaneous with that of the similar J anomaly and basement ridges (the J Anomaly Ridge and Madeira Tore Rise) along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge to the south and place them within a zone of exhumed mantle in the Newfoundland-Iberia rift. In contrast, Bronner et al. propose that the J anomaly and associated basement ridges were formed by later magmatism (about 112 million years ago) that marked the end of mantle exhumation in the rift. We argue here that constraints from plate tectonic reconstructions render this possibility untenable.
Author Posting. © The Author(s), 2012. This is the author's version of the work. It is posted here by permission of Nature Publishing Group for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Nature Geoscience 5 (2012): 676-677, doi:10.1038/ngeo1596.