Cenozoic tectonic evolution of the Marguerite Bay area, Antarctic Peninsula, interpreted from geophysical data
Magnetic, gravity and bathymetric data from Marguerite Bay are used to study the relationships between oceanic and continental tectonic evolution in the arc and fore-arc of the Antarctic Peninsula. The data are used to redefine the crustal structure of the Marguerite Bay area, providing evidence for a northward continuation of George VI Sound and the Alexander Island Mesozoic accretionary prism almost to the continental shelf edge. A two-stage model of extension, associated with changes in spreading rates and approaching ridge segments, is proposed to explain the crustal structure and Cenozoic tectonic evolution of the area. The model involves the opening of George VI trough by Tertiary dextral transtension, followed by oblique extension in an area bounded by the Tula and Adelaide fracture zones. This interpretation confirms previous work linking oceanic tectonic processes with continental arc and fore-arc structural development.