The Origin and Evolution of the Caribbean Plate
This book considers the geology between North and South America. It contributes to debate about the area's evolution, particularly that of the Caribbean. Prevailing understanding is that the Caribbean formed in the Pacific and was engulfed between the Americas as the latter drifted west. Accordingly, the Caribbean Plate comprises internal, Jurassic–Cretaceous oceanic rocks, thickened into a Cretaceous hotspot/plume plateau, with obducted ophiolites and Cretaceous–Palaeogene, subduction-related, intra-oceanic volcanic arc and metamorphosed arc/continental rocks exposed on its margins. An alternative interpretation is that the Caribbean evolved in place. It consists largely of continental crust, extended in the Triassic–Jurassic, which subsided below thick Jurassic–Cretaceous carbonate rocks and flood basalts, and Cenozoic carbonate and clastic rocks. After uplift of ‘oceanic’ and volcanic arc rocks onto (continental) margins, the interior foundered in the Middle Eocene. Papers range from regional overviews and discussions of Caribbean origins to aspects of local geology arranged in a circum-Caribbean tour and ending in the interior. They address tectonics, structure, geochronology, seismicity, igneous and metamorphic petrology, metamorphism, geochemistry, stratigraphy and palaeontology.
The geotectonic story of the northwestern branch of the Caribbean Arc: Implications from structural and geochronological data of Cuba
Published:January 01, 2009
K. P. Stanek, W. V. Maresch, J. L. Pindell, 2009. "The geotectonic story of the northwestern branch of the Caribbean Arc: Implications from structural and geochronological data of Cuba", The Origin and Evolution of the Caribbean Plate, K. H. James, M. A. Lorente, J. L. Pindell
Download citation file:
Within the last decade, modern petrological and geochronological methods in combination with detailed studies of the field geology have allowed the reconstruction of tectonic processes in the northwestern part of the Caribbean Plate. The development of an oceanic Proto-Yucatán Basin can be traced from the Late Jurassic to the Mid-Cretaceous. From the Mid-Cretaceous onward, an interaction of this basin with the Caribbean Arc can be observed. Geochronological data prove continuous magmatic activity and generation of HP mineral suites in the Caribbean Arc from the Aptian to the Campanian/Maastrichtian. Magmatism ceased at least in onshore central Cuba at about 75...