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Abstract

Seismic reflection and refraction profiles, and potential field data, complemented by crustal-scale gravity modelling, plate reconstructions and well cross-sections are used to study the evolution of the South Segment of the South Atlantic conjugate margins. Distinct along-margin structural and magmatic changes that are spatially related to a number of conjugate transfer systems are revealed. The northern province, between the Rio Grande Fracture Zone and the Salado Transfer Zone, is characterized by symmetrical seawards-dipping reflections (SDRs) and symmetrical continent–ocean transitional domain. The central province, between the Salado Transfer Zone and the conjugate Colorado–Hope transfer system, is characterized by along-strike tectonomagmatic asymmetry. The Tristan da Cunha plume, located on the central province of the South Segment, may have influenced the volume of magmatism but did not necessarily alter the process of rifted margin formation. Thus implying that, apart from voluminous magmatism, the extensional evolution of the central province of the South Segment may have much in common with ‘magma-poor’ margins.

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