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Book Chapter

Continental margins around the Gulf of Alaska

By
Roland von Huene
Roland von Huene
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Published:
January 01, 1989

Abstract

The eastern and western continental margins of the Gulf of Alaska are simple plate boundaries separating the Pacific and North American Plates. On the east is the Queen Charlotte–Fairweather transform fault system, along which the Pacific Plate moves northwest with respect to the North American Plate. On the west is the Aleutian Trench, along which the Pacific Plate converges against the North American Plate and produces a subduction zone (Fig. 1). Between the transform and convergent plate boundaries is a tectonically complicated area including the Yakutat Terrane (Jones and others, 1982), which migrated northwest on the Pacific Plate until it collided with the North American Plate. This collision occurred where the transform and thrust fault boundaries meet to form a 90° change in the trend of the plate boundary (Fig. 1). The general transform and convergent plate motion pattern has existed during the Cenozoic history of the Gulf, but variation in rate of plate motion, collision of features on the plate with North America, and subduction of oceanic crust of different age and physical properties have produced variations in the tectonic history. The tectonics produced by the subduction of thousands of kilometers of ocean crust shaped the geologic record of the convergent margin, but only the rudiments of that record are known because of the reconnaissance level of geological knowledge of the submerged margins around the Gulf of Alaska.

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Contents

DNAG, Geology of North America

The Eastern Pacific Ocean and Hawaii

E. L. Winterer
E. L. Winterer
Scripps Institution of Oceanography La Jolla, California 92093
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Donald M. Hussong
Donald M. Hussong
University of Hawaii Department of Geology and Geophysics Honolulu, Hawaii 96822
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Robert W. Decker
Robert W. Decker
4087 Silver Bar Road Mariposa, California 95338
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Geological Society of America
Volume
N
ISBN electronic:
9780813754659
Publication date:
January 01, 1989

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