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Geologic evidence for the prolongation of active normal faults of the Mona rift into northwestern Puerto Rico

By
Jean-Claude Hippolyte
Jean-Claude Hippolyte
1
UMR CNRS 5025 Laboratoire de Géodynamique des Chaînes Alpines, Université de Savoie—Campus Scientifique Technolac, 73376 Le Bourget du Lac Cedex, France
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Paul Mann
Paul Mann
2
Institute for Geophysics, Jackson School of Geosciences, University of Texas at Austin, 4412 Spicewood Springs Road, Bldg. 600, Austin, Texas 78759 USA
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Nancy R. Grindlay
Nancy R. Grindlay
3
Center for Marine Science, University of North Carolina, Wilmington, North Carolina 28409, USA
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Published:
January 01, 2005

Topography, bathymetry, regional structural observations, and fault slip measurements support the idea that the Mona rift is an active, offshore extensional structure separating a colliding area (eastern Hispaniola) from a subducting area (northwestern Puerto Rico). Near the city of Aguadilla in northwestern Puerto Rico, paleostress reconstruction through fault slip analysis demonstrates that the Mona rift is opening in an E-W direction. This fault slip analysis also indicates that the opening is oblique in the southern part of the Mona rift. We propose that oblique rifting results from accommodation of E-W extension by oblique right-lateral reactivation of previously mapped, NW-trending Eocene basement convergent structures (Aguadilla faults, Cerro Goden fault). The evolution of the stress field during the Miocene and the present E-W opening of the Mona rift support the assumption that the Miocene 25° counterclockwise rotation of Puerto Rico has stopped and that this island is presently moving to the east relative to the colliding Hispaniola.

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Contents

GSA Special Papers

Active Tectonics and Seismic Hazards of Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, and Offshore Areas

Paul Mann
Paul Mann
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Geological Society of America
Volume
385
ISBN print:
9780813723853
Publication date:
January 01, 2005

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