Articles | Volume 12, issue 4
Solid Earth, 12, 885–913, 2021

Special issue: New insights into the tectonic evolution of the Alps and the...

Solid Earth, 12, 885–913, 2021
Research article
21 Apr 2021
Research article | 21 Apr 2021

Kinematics and extent of the Piemont–Liguria Basin – implications for subduction processes in the Alps

Eline Le Breton et al.

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Cited articles

Advokaat, E. L., Van Hinsbergen, D. J. J., Maffione, M., Langereis, C. G., Vissers, R. L. M., Cherchi, A., Schroeder, R., Madani, H., and Columbu, S.: Eocene rotation of Sardinia, and the paleogeography of the western Mediterranean region, Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., 401, 183–195,, 2014. 
Amante, C. and Eakins, B. W.: ETOPO1 1 Arc-Minute Global Relief Model, NOAA Technical Memorandum NESDIS NGDC, 24, 19,, 2009. 
Andreani, L., Loget, N., Rangin, C., and Pichon, X. Le: New structural constraints on the southern Provence thrust belt (France): Evidences for an eocene shortening event linked to the corsica–sardinia subduction, B. Soc. Geol. Fr., 181, 547–563,, 2010. 
Andrés-Martínez, M., Pérez-Gussinyé, M., Armitage, J., and Morgan, J. P.: Thermomechanical Implications of Sediment Transport for the Architecture and Evolution of Continental Rifts and Margins, Tectonics, 38, 641–665,, 2019. 
Argnani, A.: Evolution of the southern Tyrrhenian slab tear and active tectonics along the western edge of the Tyrrhenian subducted slab, Geol. Soc. Sp., 311, 193–212,, 2009. 
Short summary
The former Piemont–Liguria Ocean, which separated Europe from Africa–Adria in the Jurassic, opened as an arm of the central Atlantic. Using plate reconstructions and geodynamic modeling, we show that the ocean reached only 250 km width between Europe and Adria. Moreover, at least 65 % of the lithosphere subducted into the mantle and/or incorporated into the Alps during convergence in Cretaceous and Cenozoic times comprised highly thinned continental crust, while only 35 % was truly oceanic.