Paleomagnetic Tests of Pacific Plate Reconstructions and Implications for Motion Between Hotspots

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Science  04 Mar 1994:
Vol. 263, Issue 5151, pp. 1246-1254
DOI: 10.1126/science.263.5151.1246


The plate-motion circuit through the South Pacific and Antarctica is shown to fail paleomagnetic tests of consistency. These failures imply that reconstructions of Pacific basin plates relative to surrounding plates inferred from this circuit are systematically in error and that estimates of motion between hotspots inferred from this circuit are probably too large. Therefore, the motions between hotspots remain poorly known and may be much smaller than previously estimated.