Paleomagnetic results from the Palau Islands indicate that the islands have undergone 60°-70° of clockwise rotation since mid-Oligocene time. This post-mid-Oligocene rotation is interpreted to represent the motion of the Philippine Sea plate and not a local rotation for the following reasons: (1) lack of morphologic expression of the differential rotation along the Palau-Kyushu Ridge, (2) similarity to predicted rotations obtained by using phase-shifted magnetic anomaly data, and (3) ubiquitous clockwise rotations seen in paleomagnetic data from around the Philippine Sea plate. This strong clockwise rotation of the Philippine Sea plate provides a mechanism for oblique subduction and related transcurrent motion along the margin of the Philippine archipelago.

First Page Preview

First page PDF preview
You do not currently have access to this article.