Possible sea-floor spreading anomalies are indentified in marine magnetic surveys conducted in the eastern Gulf of Mexico. A symmetric pattern of lineated anomalies can be correlated with the geomagnetic time scale using previously proposed opening histories for the Gulf of Mexico basin. Lineated magnetic anomalies are characterized by amplitudes of up to 30 nT and wavelengths of 45-55 km, and are correlatable across 12 different ship tracks spanning a combined distance of 6,712 km. The magnetic lineations are orientated in a NW-SE direction with 3 distinct positive lineations on either side of the inferred spreading ridge anomalies. The magnetic anomalies were forward modeled with a 2 km thick magnetic crust composed of vertically bounded blocks of normal and reverse polarity at a model source depth of 10 km. Remnant magnetization intensity and inclination are 1.6 A m-1 and 0.2° respectively, chosen to best fit the magnetic observed amplitudes and, for inclination, in accord with the nearly equatorial position of the Gulf of Mexico during Jurassic seafloor spreading. The current magnetic field is modeled with declination and inclination of and 0.65° and 20° respectively. Using a full seafloor spreading rate of 1.7 cm/yr, the anomalies correlate with magnetic chrons M21 to M10. The inferred spreading direction is consistent with previous suggestions of a North-East to South-West direction of sea-floor spreading off the west coast of Florida beginning 149 Ma (M21) and ending 134 Ma (M10). The opening direction is also consistent with the counter-clockwise rotation of Yucatan proposed in past models.
|Commitee:||Egenhoff, Sven, Robinson, Raymond|
|School:||Colorado State University|
|School Location:||United States -- Colorado|
|Source:||MAI 53/06M(E), Masters Abstracts International|
|Keywords:||Gulf of mexico, Marine magnetic anomalies, Mexico, Seafloor spreading|
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