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Book Chapter

The Middle America Trench

By
Barclay P. Collins
Barclay P. Collins
Tenneco Oil Exploration and Production Bakersfield, California
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Joel S. Watkins
Joel S. Watkins
Consultant Houston, Texas
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Published:
January 01, 1986

Abstract

Seismic line MX-16 transects the Middle America Trench on the Pacific coast of Mexico. The bathymetric map reveals a narrow continental shelf, a steep trench slope, and an axial trench about 5 km below sea level. A large submarine canyon cuts the upper slope in the vicinity of line MX-16. This area was extensively drilled during Leg 66 of the Deep Sea Drilling Project (Watkins et al., 1982).

Subduction in the area has been active intermittently during the last 100 m.y. (Karig et al., 1978). The convergence rate of the underthrusting Cocos plate relative to the overriding North American plate is inferred to be about 7 cm/yr (Minster and Jordan, 1978). Leg 66 drilling results suggest the continental margin in the area was truncated between 10 and 35 m.y.B.P., perhaps by transcurrent faulting or subduction erosion (Moore et al., 1982). A small accreted wedge subsequently developed by sediment underplating and offscraping (Moore et al., 1982). No forearc basin such as those seen on many trench slopes is evident on seismic line MX-16.

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Contents

AAPG Studies in Geology

Seismic Images of Modern Convergent Margin Tectonic Structure

Roland von Huene
Roland von Huene
U.S. Geological Survey Menlo Park, California
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Susan Vath
Susan Vath
U.S. Geological Survey Menlo Park, California
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Christine Sperber
Christine Sperber
U.S. Geological Survey Menlo Park, California
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Bridgett Fulop
Bridgett Fulop
U.S. Geological Survey Menlo Park, California
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Lee Bailey
Lee Bailey
U.S. Geological Survey Menlo Park, California
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Monique Martin
Monique Martin
U.S. Geological Survey Menlo Park, California
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American Association of Petroleum Geologists
Volume
26
ISBN electronic:
9781629811499
Publication date:
January 01, 1986

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