loading page

The origin of the low-velocity anomalies beneath the rootless Atlas Mountains: an insight gained from modeling of anisotropy developed by the travel of Canary Plume
  • Hwaju Lee,
  • Maximiliano Bezada,
  • YoungHee Kim
Hwaju Lee
Seoul National University

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

Author Profile
Maximiliano Bezada
University of Minnesota
Author Profile
YoungHee Kim
Seoul National University
Author Profile


When a mantle plume rises from the deep mantle and reaches the base of a tectonic plate, it changes the traveling direction from vertical to horizontal. The horizontal spread of plume material is often radially asymmetric. The plume found below the Canary Hotspot is an example. Previous studies have suggested that the channeling of the Canary Plume toward the westernmost Mediterranean (Alboran Sea) may have contributed to the high elevation of the Moroccan Atlas Mountains while regional upwelling and edge-driven convection are proposed as other candidates to explain the topography. Since mantle flow can develop seismic anisotropy, in this study we incorporate anisotropy as a priori constraint in teleseismic P-wave tomography. Our improved tomography result favors the hypothesis that the lateral travel of Canary Plume material supports the isostatically unstable Moroccan Atlas.