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Science. 2002 Nov 8;298(5596):1219-21.

Seismic images of crust and upper mantle beneath Tibet: evidence for Eurasian plate subduction.

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GeoForschungsZentrum Potsdam, Telegrafenberg, 14473 Potsdam, Germany.


Seismic data from central Tibet have been combined to image the subsurface structure and understand the evolution of the collision of India and Eurasia. The 410- and 660-kilometer mantle discontinuities are sharply defined, implying a lack of a subducting slab beneath the plateau. The discontinuities appear slightly deeper beneath northern Tibet, implying that the average temperature of the mantle above the transition zone is about 300 degrees C hotter in the north than in the south. There is a prominent south-dipping converter in the uppermost mantle beneath northern Tibet that might represent the top of the Eurasian mantle lithosphere underthrusting the northern margin of the plateau.

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