Incipient spreading center in the Gulf of Elat, northern Red Sea

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The Gulf of Elat, located at the northern Red Sea, is a rift that forms the southern section of the Dead Sea rift system. A recent high-resolution seismic reflection survey showed that lenticular grabens and axial anticlines are the predominant structures at the rift floor. Structural relationships suggest that after the lenticular graben was formed at the rift floor, it was filled with sediments. Axial uplift along the rift caused the widening of the graben and the development of axial anticlines, and at a later stage a new graben started to develop between the flank of the anticline and the boundary fault of the rift. The data indicate that the tectonic regime affecting the southern Dead Sea rift is one of uplift and extension, acting simultaneously. It is presumed that upwelling of magma in the upper mantle, extending northwards from the Red Sea, is the cause for these uplift and extensional phenomena, and that the Gulf of Elat is an incipient spreading center.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)117-126
Number of pages10
JournalEarth and Planetary Science Letters
Issue number1
StatePublished - Aug 1982
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science


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