A new assessment of the elastic thickness (Te) structure of the Indian shield, and its implications

Deshraj Trivedi, Yudhvir Singh, Tanmay K. Maji, Suresh Ch. Kandpal, Rajesh R. Nair


The elastic thickness (Te) of continents is a matter of much debate. Recent studies have shown that a number of factors control the continental Te, including age, heat flow, and lithospheric thickness. Here, we estimate the Te structure of the whole Indian shield using an improved isotropic fan wavelet land ocean deconvolution methodology, and we compare these results with the global published Te estimates in the Archean, Proterozoic and younger geological provinces. Our study reveals low (0-45 km/0-35 km), intermediate (45-70 km) and high (70-100 km) Te values in the Archean/Quaternary, the Proterozoic, and the Tertiary provinces, respectively, of the Indian shield. This is in contrast with global estimates of Te in similar geological provinces. In the absence of any correlation of Te with any controlling parameters, we propose that the mantle properties, rather than the tectonic history, are responsible for influences on the Te values within the Indian shield. The global positioning system horizontal velocity vectors yielded a locking depth of ca. 20 ±4 km, and the aseismic creep beyond correlates well with the high strength of ca. 70 km to 100 km in the central Himalayan foreland.


Elastic thickness; Indian Shield; Seismic Zoning; Himalayas

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.4401/ag-5172
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Published by INGV, Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia - ISSN: 2037-416X