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The Izu-Bonin-Mariana (IBM) arc system extends 2800 km from the Izu Peninsula to Guam Island (Fig. 2f.1) and provides an excellent example of an intra-oceanic convergent margin where the effects of crustal anatexis and assimilation are considered to be minimal (Stern et al. 2003; Tatsumi Stern 2006). The current IBM activity is caused by subduction of the Pacific Plate beneath the Philippine Sea Plate, which dips at 35° at the northern tip of this system and ia nearly vertical at Mariana. Evolution of the IBM Arc since 50 Ma has strongly in?uenced the present architecture of the Japanese archipelago. One important event during this arc system’s evolution is back-arc rifting from 15-25 Ma that separated the IBM Arc system from the remnant Kyushu-Palau Ridge by c. 500 km and created the young oceanic lithosphere of the Shikoku Basin that is now being subducted beneath the SW Japan Arc. It should be further stressed that recent geophysical and geological survey results suggest this intra-oceanic arc is an active site of both creation and growth of the continental crust. This chapter will highlight the tectonic and structural evolution of the IBM arc system.

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