Abstract

On land much of the Pacific margin is composed of allochthonous terranes, which are of continental and noncontinental origins. In the oceans numerous oceanic rises, some of which are submerged continental fragments, are presently embedded in the oceanic plates. These oceanic rises are probably future accreted terranes. They thus represent one stage in the development of allochthonous terranes found in orogenic zones. Minerals found in these terranes were formed at locations that in the past could have been thousands of kilometres away. This is because some oceanic terranes were split into several parts that moved with their respective plates in different directions. Also, faulting at the continental margins caused large-scale concurrent and post-accretionary horizontal translations of hundreds of kilometres of the allochthonous terranes.Studying the allochthonous terranes may provide important information about the Paleozoic and early Mesozoic history of the Pacific Ocean, because most of the oceanic crust of this age has disappeared leaving only those allochthonous terranes that were once oceanic plateaus within this crust. Understanding the history of the Pacific basin plates and of the allochthonous terranes may lead to the discovery of minerals within the submerged oceanic plateaus.

You do not currently have access to this article.