Continued Convergence After the Occurrence of a Slab Break-Off: The Case of the Cyprian Arc

R. Granot, Y. Hamiel, M. Kanari, S. Kurant, O. Katz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The detachment (i.e., break-off) of down-going subducting oceanic slabs is a major geodynamic event with far-reaching consequences, one of which is the reduction of the slab pull force acting on the trailing plate. We investigate the motion of the Sinai Microplate where a recent (∼1 Myr ago) slab break-off occurred along its sole converging plate boundary (Cyprian Arc) with the overriding Anatolia Microplate. Based on new bathymetric mapping, high-resolution seismic reflection imaging, geodetic and earthquake data, we show that Sinai is actively moving in a northwest direction with respect to Nubia. Our results indicate that despite the recent slab break-off, Sinai has and is still being pulled (or pushed) toward the overriding Anatolia Microplate. The continued convergence possibly occurs because of a persistent slab pull force, a suction force induced by the down-going detached slab and/or by the upper mantle flow induced by the Afar Plume.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere2023GL108095
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Issue number7
StatePublished - 16 Apr 2024
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2024. The Authors.


  • Eastern Mediterranean
  • plate kinematics
  • Sinai microplate
  • slab detachment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


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