Journal article

RIDGE TORQUES AND CONTINENTAL COLLISION IN THE INDIAN-AUSTRALIAN PLATE

M SANDIFORD, DD COBLENTZ, RM RICHARDSON

GEOLOGY | GEOLOGICAL SOC AMER, INC | Published : 1995

Abstract

The excess gravitational potential energy of a collisional orogen that may be supported by focusing distributed ridge torques in a plate depends on the ratio l′ of the effective lengths of ridge systems and collisional fronts. In the Indian-Australian plate, the net torque due to the asymmetric distribution of mid-ocean ridges and young oceanic lithosphere along the southern boundary is ~8.5 × 10 25 N.m and is capable of supporting an excess potential energy of the Himalayan collision zone of up to 7.5 × 10 12 J/m 2 . The concept that collision in the Indian-Australian plate may be sustained by ridge torques suggests that collisional driving stresses may be sensitive to l′. Changes in l′ may..

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