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History of views on the relative positions of Antarctica and South America: A 100-year tango between Patagonia and the Antarctic Peninsula

Open-File Report 2007-1047-SRP-041

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DOI: 10.3133/ofr20071047SRP041

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Abstract

Discussion of continental drift around Antarctica began nearly 100 years ago. While the Gondwana connections of Antarctica to Africa and Australia have been well defined for decades, the relative pre-drift positions of the Antarctic Peninsula and Patagonia continue to be subjects of controversy. Certainly older figures, which showed a paleo-position of the Peninsula crossing over continental crust of the Falkland Plateau or even South Africa or Patagonia, are out of consideration now. But contradictory opinions remain over the relative paleo-position of the Peninsula as a more or less straight prolongation of the Patagonian Andes, versus a position parallel to Patagonia along the Pacific coast. Geological reasons are found for both opinions, but geophysical observations on the adjacent ocean floors, particularly the evolution of the Weddell Sea crust, speak for the last-mentioned reconstruction.

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Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
History of views on the relative positions of Antarctica and South America: A 100-year tango between Patagonia and the Antarctic Peninsula
Series title:
Open-File Report
Series number:
2007-1047-SRP-041
DOI:
10.3133/ofr20071047SRP041
Year Published:
2007
Language:
English
Publisher:
U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location:
Reston, VA
Description:
4 p.
Larger Work Type:
Report
Larger Work Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Larger Work Title:
Antarctica: A Keystone in a Changing World--Online Proceedings for the Tenth International Symposium on Antarctic Earth Sciences. Santa Barbara, California, U.S.A.--August 26 to September 1, 2007
Other Geospatial:
Antarctica
Additional Online Files(Y/N):
N