Skip to main content

Tectonic and magmatic patterns in the Jutulstraumen rift (?) region, East Antarctica, as imaged by high-resolution aeromagnetic data

Abstract

The Jutulstraumen ice stream in western Dronning Maud Land may conceal a Jurassic continental rift. Delineating the geometry and the magmatic patterns of this inferred glaciated rift in East Antarctica is important to improve our understanding of the regional tectonic and magmatic processes associated with Gondwana break-up. A high-resolution aeromagnetic survey provides new insights over the largely buried tectonic and magmatic patterns of the Jutulstraumen area. Prominent NE-SW oriented aeromagnetic trends are detected over the Jutulstraumen. These trends delineate major inherited structural boundaries, active in Grenvillian (about 1.1 Ga) and Pan-African times (about 500 Ma), which appear to strongly control the location of the later Jurassic rift. The postulated eastern flank of the rift is marked by a broad positive anomaly over H. U. Sverdrupfjella. Buried Grenvillian age rocks may be the source of the long-wavelength anomaly. However, the higher frequency components correlate with granitoids of late Pan-African age. The inferred western flank of the rift features short-wavelength anomalies over the Borgmassivet and Ahlmannryggen areas, indicating a considerably greater extent of mid-Proterozoic tholeiitic sills than apparent in outcrop. In contrast, aeromagnetic signatures suggest that alkaline plutons, which relate to Jurassic rifting, are restricted to outcrop areas along the eastern rift flank. The prominent magnetic low over the Jutulstraumen indicates either a largely amagmatic rift, or perhaps subglacial sediments within the rift basin.

References

  1. Allen, A. R., The tectonic and metamorphic evolution of H. U. Sverdrupfjella, western Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica, in Geological evolution of Antarctica, edited by M. R. A. Thomson, J. A. Crame, and J. W. Thomson, pp. 53–60, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1991.

    Google Scholar 

  2. Barton, J. M., R. Klemd, H. L. Allssop, S. H. Auret, and Y. E. Copperthwaite, The geology and geochronology of the Annandagstoppane granite, western Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica, Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology, 97, 488–496, 1987.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  3. Behrendt, J. C., Crustal and lithospheric structure of the West Antarctic Rift System from geophysical investigations—a review, Global and Planetary Change, 23, 25–44, 1999.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  4. Behrendt, J. C., R. Saltus, D. Damaske, A. McCafferty, C. A. Finn, D. Blankenship, and R. E. Bell, Patterns of late Cenozoic volcanic and tectonic activity in the West Antarctic rift system revealed by aeromagnetic surveys, Tectonics, 15, 660–676, 1996.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  5. Blankenship, D., R. E. Bell, S. M. Hodge, J. M. Brozena, J. C. Behrendt, and C. A. Finn, Active volcanism beneath the West Antarctic ice sheet and implications for ice-sheet stability, Nature, 361, 526–529, 1993.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  6. Bozzo, E., D. Damaske, G. Caneva, M. Chiappini, F. Ferraccioli, M. Gambetta, and A. Meloni, A high resolution aeromagnetic survey over proposed drill sites offshore of Cape Roberts in the Southwestern Ross Sea (Antarctica), in The Antarctic Region: Geological Evolution and Processes, edited by C. A. Ricci, pp. 1129–1133, Terra Antartica Publication, Siena, 1997.

    Google Scholar 

  7. Briggs, J. C., Machine contouring using minimum curvature, Geophysics, 39, 39–48, 1974.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  8. Corner, B., Geological evolution of western Dronning Maud Land within a Gondwana framework: geophysics subprogramme, Final Project Report to SACAR, 1994.

    Google Scholar 

  9. Cox, K. G., Karoo igneous activity and the early stages of the break-up of Gondwanaland, in Magmatism and the Causes of Continental Breakup, edited by B. C. Storey, T. Alabaster, and R. J. Pankhurst, Geol. Soc. Spec. Publ., 68, 137–148, 1992.

    Google Scholar 

  10. Curtis, M. L., T. R. Riley, P. T. Leat, and F. Ferraccioli, Tectonic inferences from Jurassic dyke swarms and alkaline pluton emplacement in western Dronning Maud Land, Paper presented at 9th International Symposium on Antarctic Earth Sciences, 8–12 Sept. 2003, Potsdam, Germany, Terra Nostra, 60–61, 2003.

    Google Scholar 

  11. Duncan, R. A., P. R. Hooper, J. Rehacek, J. S. Marsh, and A. R. Duncan, The timing and duration of the Karoo igneous event, southern Gondwana, Journal of Geophysical Research, 102, 18127–18138, 1997.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  12. Ferraccioli, F. and E. Bozzo, Inherited crustal features and tectonic blocks of the Transantarctic Mountains: an aeromagnetic perspective (Victoria Land-Antarctica), Journal of Geophysical Research, 104, 25,297–25,319, 1999.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  13. Ferraccioli, F. and E. Bozzo, Cenozoic strike-slip faulting from the eastern margin of the Wilkes Subglacial Basin to the western margin of the Ross Sea Rift: an aeromagnetic connection, in Intraplate Strike-Slip Deformation Belts, edited by F. Storti, R. E. Holdsworth, and F. Salvini, Geol. So.c, London, Spec. Pub., 210, 109–133, 2003.

    Google Scholar 

  14. Ferraccioli, F., M. Gambetta, and E. Bozzo, Microlevelling procedures applied to regional aeromagnetic data: an example from the Transantarctic Mountains (Antarctica), Geophysical Prospecting, 46, 177–196, 1998.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  15. Ferraccioli, F., E. Bozzo, and G. Capponi, Aeromagnetic and gravity anomaly constraints for an early Paleozoic subduction system of Victoria Land, Antarctica, Geophys. Res. Lett., 29(10), 1406, doi:10.1029/2001GL014138, 2002a.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  16. Ferraccioli, F., E. Bozzo, and D. Damaske, Aeromagnetic signatures over western Marie Byrd Land provide insight into magmatic arc basement, mafic magmatism and structure of the eastern Ross Sea Rift flank, Tectonophysics, 347, 139–165, 2002b.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  17. Ferraccioli, F., P. C. Jones, M. L. Curtis, and P. T. Leat, Subglacial imprints of early Gondwana break-up as identified from high resolution aerogeophysical data over western Dronning Maud Land, East Antarctica, Terra Nova (in press).

  18. Finn, C., D. Moore, D. Damaske, and T. Mackey, Aeromagnetic Legacy of early Paleozoic subduction along the Pacific margin of Gondwana, Geology, 27, 1087–1090, 1999.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  19. Golynsky, A. V and N. D. Aleshkova, Regional magnetic anomalies of the Weddell Sea Region and their geological significance, Polarforshung, 67, 101–117, 2000a.

    Google Scholar 

  20. Golynsky, A. V., G. E. Grikurov, and E. N. Kamenev, Geological significance of regional magnetic anomalies in Coats Land and western Dronning Maud Land, Polarforshung, 67, 91–99, 2000b.

    Google Scholar 

  21. Golynsky, A. V., M. Chiappini, D. Damaske, F. Ferraccioli, Ferris, C. Finn,. M. Ghidella, T. Isihara, A. Johnson, S. Kovacs, V. Masolov, Y. Nogi, M. Purucker, P. Taylor, and M. Torta, ADMAP—Magnetic anomaly map of the Antarctic, 1:10,000 scale map. BAS (Misc.) 10, Cambridge, British Antarctic Survey, 2001.

    Google Scholar 

  22. Golynsky, A. V., P. Morris, L. C. Kovacs, and J. K. Ferris, A new magnetic map of the Weddell Sea and the Antarctic Peninsula, Tectonophysics, 347, 3–11, 2002.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  23. Golynsky, A. V., M. Chiappini, D. Damaske, F. Ferraccioli, C. Finn, T. Ishihara, V. N. Masolov, P. Morris, Y. Nogi, and R. R. B. von Frese, ADMAP—a Digital Magnetic Anomaly Map of the Antarctic, paper presented at 9th International Symposium on Antarctic Earth Sciences, 8–12 Sept. 2003, Potsdam, Germany, Terra Nostra, 123–124, 2003.

    Google Scholar 

  24. Grantham, G. H., Aspects of Jurassic magmatism and faulting in western Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica: implications for Gondwana break-up, in Weddell Sea Tectonics and Gondwana Break-up, edited by B. C. Storey, E. C. King and R. A. Livermore, Geol. Soc. Spec. Publ., 108, 63–73, 1996.

    Google Scholar 

  25. Grantham, G. H. and D. R. Hunter, The timing and nature of faulting and jointing adjacent to the Pencksökket, western Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica, in Geological Evolution of Antarctica, edited by M. R. A. Thomson, J. A. Crame, and J. W. Thomson, pp. 47–51, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1991.

    Google Scholar 

  26. Grantham, G. H., P. B. Groenwald, and D. R. Hunter, Geology of the northern H. U. Sverdrupfjella, western Dronning Maud Land and the implications for Gondwana reconstructions, South African Journal of Antarctic Research, 18, 2–10, 1988.

    Google Scholar 

  27. Grantham, G. H., A. B. Moyes, and D. R. Hunter, The age, petrogenesis and emplacement of the Dalamatian granite, H. U. Sverdrupfjella, Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica, Antarctic Science, 3, 197–204, 1991.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  28. Grantham, G. H., C. Jackson, A. B. Moyes, P. B. Groenwald, P. D. Harris, G. Ferrar, and J. R. Krynauw, The tectonothermal evolution of the Kirwanveggen-H. U. Sverdrupfjella areas, Dronning Maud Land, Antarcticall, Precambrian Research, 75, 200–231, 1995.

    Google Scholar 

  29. Grantham, G. H., P. G. Guise, T. Spell, B. M. Eglington, and F. J. Kruger, The age, chemistry and structure of Jurassic intrusions in H. U. Sverdrupfjella, western Dronning Maud Land, Paper presented at IV International Dyke Conference, Ithala, South Africa, 27, 2001.

  30. Groenwald, P. B., G. H. Grantham, and M. K. Watkeys, Geological evidence for a Proterozoic to Mesozoic link between southeastern Africa and Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica, J. Geol. Soc, London, 148, 1115–1123, 1991.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  31. Groenwald, P. B., A. B. Moyes, G. H. Grantham, and J. R. Krynauw, East Antarctic crustal evolution: geological constraints and modelling in western Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica, Precambrian Research, 75, 231–251, 1995.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  32. Hanson, R. E., M. W. Martin, S. A. Bowring, and H. Munyanyiwa, U-Pb zircon age for the Umkondo dolerites, eastern Zimbabwe: 1.1 Ga large igneous province in southern Africa-East Antarctica and possible Rodinia correlations, Geology, 26, 1143–1146, 1998.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  33. Harris, C., Petrogenesis of the Sistfjell syenite complex, Dronning Maud Land: generation of low δ18O magmas by crustal contamination of rift zone magmas, Geological Society of South Africa Centennial Geocongress, Extended Abstracts, 1, 240–243, 1995.

    Google Scholar 

  34. Harris, C. and G. H. Grantham, Geology and petrogenesis of the Straumsvola nepheline syenite complex, Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica, Geological Magazine, 130, 513–532, 1993.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  35. Harris, C., J. S. Marsh, A. R. Duncan, and A. J. Erlank, The petrogenesis of the Kirwan Basalts of Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica, Journal of Petrology, 31, 341–369, 1990.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  36. Harris, C., B. R. Watters, and P. B. Groenewald, Geochemistry of the Mesozoic regional basic dykes of western Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica, Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology, 107, 100–111, 1991.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  37. Hoyday, Ø. A., A force balance study of ice flow and basal conditions of Jutulstraumen, Antarctica, Journal ofGlaciology, 42, 413–425, 1996.

    Google Scholar 

  38. Jacobs, J. and F. Lisker, Post-Permian tectono-thermal evolution of western Dronning Maud Land, East Antarctica: an apatite-fission track approach, Antarctic Science, 11(4), 451–460, 1999.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  39. Jokat, W., T. Boebel, M. König, and U. Meyer, Timing and geometry of early Gondwana breakup, J. Geophys. Res., 108(B9), 2428, doi:10.1029/2002JB001802, 2003.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  40. Knoper, M., C. Jackson, P. Harris, G. Ferrar, J. Krynauv, A. Moyes, and C. Harris, Geological maps of the Kirwanveggen, western Dronning Maud Land, East Antarctica, in The Antarctic Region: Geological Evolution and Processes, edited by C. A. Ricci, pp. 1129–1133, Terra Antartica Publication, Siena, 1997.

    Google Scholar 

  41. Luttinen, A. V. and H. Furnes, Flood basalts of Vestfjella: Jurassic magmatism across an Archaean—Proterozoic lithospheric boundary in Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica, Journal of Petrology, 41, 1271–1305, 2000.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  42. Luttinen, A. V., K. H. Grind, J. U. Siivola, and M. H. Räisänen, The mafic igneous rocks of Vestfjella, western Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica, Antarctic Rep. Finland, 4, 12–19, 1994.

    Google Scholar 

  43. Mader, G. L., Rapid static and kinematic Global Positioning System solutions using the ambiguity function technique, J. Geophys. Res., 97, 3271–3283, 1992.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  44. Marsh, J. S., Discussion “The geophysical mapping of Mesozoic dyke swarms in southern Africa and their origin in the disruption of Gondwana”, J. African Earth Sci., 35, 525–527, 2002.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  45. Martin, A. K. and C. J. H. Hartnady, Plate tectonic development of the south west Indian Ocean: a revised reconstruction of East Antarctica and Africa, J. Geophys. Res., 91, 4767–4786, 1986.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  46. Moyes, A. B., J. M. Barton, and P. B. Groenewald, Late Proterozoic to Early Palaeozoic tectonism in Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica: supercontinental fragmentation and amalgamation, J. Geol. Soc, London, 150, 833–842, 1993a.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  47. Moyes, A. B., P. B. Groenwald, and R. W. Brown, Isotopic constraints on the age and origin of the Brattskarvet intrusive suite, Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica. Chemical Geology, 106, 453–466, 1993b.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  48. Perritt, S. H. and M. K. Watkeys, Implications of late Pan-African shearing in western Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica, in Intraplate strike-slip Deformation Belts, edited by F. Storti, R. E. Holdsworth, and F. Salvini, Geol. Soc, London, Spec. Pub., 210, 135–143, 2003.

    Google Scholar 

  49. Ravich, M. G. and D. S. Solov’ev, Geology and petrology of the mountains of central Queen Maud Land (Eastern Antarctica), Transactions of the Science Research Institute of Arctic Geology, Ministry of Geology of the USSR, 141, 348 pp., 1966.

    Google Scholar 

  50. Reeves, C., The geophysical mapping of Mesozoic dyke swarms in southern Africa and their origin in the disruption of Gondwana

  51. Riley, T. R., P. T. Leat, M. L. Curtis, L. L. Millar, R. A. Duncan, and A. Fazel, Early-Middle Jurassic dolerite dykes from western Dronning Maud Land (Antarctica): identifying mantle sources in the Karoo large igneous province, Journal of Petrology, 46, 1489–1524, 2005.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  52. Sergeyev, M. B., Magnetic properties of rocks from the south-eastern part of the Weddell Sea region, Antarctica, Polarforshung, 67, 119–124, 2000.

    Google Scholar 

  53. Tikku, A. A., K. M. Marks, and L. C. Kovacs, An early Cretaceous extinct spreading center in the northern Natal valley, Tectonophysics, 347, 87–108, 2002.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  54. Watters, B. R., The Straumsnutane Volcanics, western Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica, South African Journal of Antarctic Research, 2, 23–31, 1972.

    Google Scholar 

  55. Wolmarans, L. G. and L. E. Kent, Geological investigations in western Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica—a synthesis, South African Journal of Antarctic Research, Supplement 2, 93 pp., 1982.

Download references

Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to F. Ferraccioli.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Ferraccioli, F., Jones, P.C., Curtis, M.L. et al. Tectonic and magmatic patterns in the Jutulstraumen rift (?) region, East Antarctica, as imaged by high-resolution aeromagnetic data. Earth Planet Sp 57, 767–780 (2005). https://doi.org/10.1186/BF03351856

Download citation

Key words

  • Aeromagnetic anomalies
  • rift
  • Jutulstraumen
  • East Antarctica