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Abstract

We present a revised magnetic isochron map of the conjugate Arabian and Eastern Somali basins based on an up-to-date compilation of Indian, French, and other available sea-surface magnetic data. We have used the magnetic anomaly and the modulus of the analytical signal computed from the magnetic anomaly to identify and precisely locate the young and old edges of magnetic chrons in both basins. In addition to the major, well-defined anomalies, we have also used correlatable second-order features of the magnetic anomalies, the ‘tiny wiggles’, to strengthen the interpretation. The resulting isochrons and tectonic elements have been validated using the stochastic method of palaeogeographical reconstruction. The magnetic anomaly pattern in both basins depicts clear oblique offsets, characteristics of pseudofaults associated with propagating ridge segments. Our tectonic interpretation of the area revealed: (1) a complex pattern of ridge propagation between Chrons 28n (c. 63 Ma) and 25n (c. 56 Ma), with dominant eastward propagation between Chrons 26n (c. 58 Ma) and 25n; (2) numerous, systematic westward propagations between Chrons 24n (c. 53 Ma) and 20n (c. 43 Ma); (3) asymmetric crustal accretion (caused by ridge propagation and asymmetric sea-floor spreading) in the conjugate basins during the whole period; (4) a slowing of India-Somalia motion after c. 52 Ma.

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