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The crustal structure of northern Africa is puzzling, large areas being of difficult access and concealed by the Sahara. The new global gravity models are of unprecedented precision and spatial resolution and offer a new possibility to reveal the structure of the lithosphere beneath the Sahara. The gravity gradients correlate better than gravity with geological features such as rifts, fold belts and magmatic deposits and intrusions. They are an ideal tool to follow geological units (e.g. basement units) below a stratigraphic layer of varying density (e.g. sediments). We focus on the Chad lineament, a 1300 km arcuate feature located...

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