Episodic Rifting of Phanerozoic Rocks in the Victoria Land Basin, Western Ross Sea, Antarctica

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Science  13 Sep 1985:
Vol. 229, Issue 4718, pp. 1085-1087
DOI: 10.1126/science.229.4718.1085


Multichannel seismic-reflection data show that the Victoria Land-basin, unlike other sedimentary basins in the Ross Sea, includes a rift-depression 15 to 25 kilometers wide that parallels the Transantarctic Mountains and contains up to 12 kilometers of possible Paleozoic to Holocene age sedimentary rocks. An unconformity separates the previously identified Cenozoic sedimentary section from the underlying strata of possible Mesozoic and Paleozoic age. Late Cenozoic volcanic rocks intrude into the entire section along the eastern flank of the basin. The Victoria Land basin is probably part of a more extensive rift system that has been active episodically since Paleozoic time. Inferred rifting and basin subsidence during Mesozoic and Cenozoic time may be associated with regional crustal extension and uplift of the nearby Transantarctic Mountains.

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