Paleostructure of the northwestern end of Antarctica and the Bransfield strait evolution
© Yu.V. Kozlenko, M.V. Kozlenko
In order to study evolution of the Bransfield Straight, reconstruction of paleostructure of northwestern extremity of Antarctica has been
conducted on the base of analysis of batimetric and seismologic data as well as results of mapping of DSS and GPS observations.
As a result of conducted studies the limits of the Earth's crust blocks of the northern extremity of the Antarctic Peninsula, the North
Shetland Islands and adjacent water area, which are different by their characteristics and history of development have been found. A scheme
has been proposed for the mechanism of formation of up to-date structure of the region. It has been shown that earlier in this region a single
geomorphologic mega-structure existed. Expansion of the Earth's crust in the central part of the rift resulted in creation of the passive rift
in the western sub-depression. The results obtained testify to the fact that the leading role in formation of the North-Shetland trough was played
by the thrust of the South-Shetland block to the Phenix Plate as a result of spreading in the Bransfield Straight. In such a way the concept of
arising of this structure as a result of subduction of the Plate Phenix under the Antarctic Peninsula is denied.