Articles | Volume 10, issue 2
Research article
03 Apr 2019
Research article |  | 03 Apr 2019

Ionian Abyssal Plain: a window into the Tethys oceanic lithosphere

Anke Dannowski, Heidrun Kopp, Frauke Klingelhoefer, Dirk Klaeschen, Marc-André Gutscher, Anne Krabbenhoeft, David Dellong, Marzia Rovere, David Graindorge, Cord Papenberg, and Ingo Klaucke

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Cited articles

Argnani, A. and Bonazzi, C.: The Malta Escarpment fault zone offshore eastern Sicily: Pliocene-Quaternary tectonic evolution based on new multichannel seismic data, Tectonics, 24, TC4009,, 2005. 
Baldi, P., Degli Angioli, E., Piallini L., and Mantovani, E.: Gravity anomaly interpretation in the Calabrian Arc and surrounding regions: a tridimensional approach, Earth Evol. Sci., 3, 243–247, 1982. 
Barreca, G., Scarfì, L., Cannavò, F., Koulakov, I., and Monaco, C.: New structural and seismological evidence and interpretation of a lithospheric-scale shear zone at the southern edge of the Ionian subduction system (central-eastern Sicily, Italy), Tectonics, 35, 1489–1505,, 2016. 
Carlson, R. L.: Seismic velocities in the uppermost oceanic crust: Age dependence and the fate of layer 2A, J. Geophys. Res., 103, 7069–7077,, 1998. 
Carlson, R. L. and Herrick, C. N.: Densities and porosities in the oceanic crust and their variations with depth and age, J. Geophys. Res., 95, 9153–9170,, 1990. 
Short summary
The nature of the Ionian Sea crust has been the subject of scientific debate for more than 30 years. Seismic data, recorded on ocean bottom instruments, have been analysed and support the interpretation of the Ionian Abyssal Plain as a remnant of the Tethys oceanic lithosphere with the Malta Escarpment as a transform margin and a Tethys opening in the NNW–SSE direction.