Nubia-Eurasia kinematics: an alternative interpretation from Mediterranean and North Atlantic evidence

E. Mantovani, M. Viti, D. Babbucci, D. Albarello


It is argued that the Plio-Quaternary deformation pattern in the Mediterranean region is compatible with a SSWNNE
convergence between Africa (Nubia) and Eurasia and that the significant difference between this kinematics
and the one provided by global models (SSE-NNW convergence e.g., the NUVEL-1) may be due to the fact
that those models interpret North Atlantic data by adopting an oversimplified two-plate configuration, which
cannot account for the occurrence of significant seismotectonic activity inside the presumed Nubia and Eurasia
blocks. It is shown that the adoption of a new plate configuration involving the Iberia and Morocco microplates,
strongly suggested by geological and seismotectonic evidence, makes it possible to identify a kinematic model
compatible within errors with the constraints recognized in the Mediterranean region and with the NUVEL-1
North Atlantic data set. Some considerations are made about why the present-day Nubia-Eurasia kinematic models
inferred from geodetic observations are significantly different from long-term models, such as model NUVEL-
1 and the one proposed in this work.


Nubia-Eurasia kinematics;Mediterranean region;Plio-Quaternary deformation

Full Text:



We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue to use this site we will assume that you are happy with it (Read more).

Published by INGV, Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia - ISSN: 2037-416X