From orogeny to rifting: insights from the Norwegian ‘reactivation phase’
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionScientific Reports. 2020, 10 (1), . 10.1038/s41598-020-71893-z
Based on observations from the Mid-Norwegian extensional system, we describe how, when and where the post-Caledonian continental crust evolved from a context of orogenic disintegration to one of continental rifting. We highlight the importance of a deformation stage that occurred between the collapse mode and the high-angle faulting mode often associated with early rifting of continental crust. This transitional stage, which we interpret to represent the earliest stage of rifting, includes unexpected large magnitudes of crustal thinning facilitated through the reactivation and further development of inherited collapse structures, including detachment faults, shear zones and metamorphic core complexes. The reduction of the already re-equilibrated post-orogenic crust to only ~ 50% of normal thickness over large areas, and considerably less locally, during this stage shows that the common assumption of very moderate extension in the proximal margin domain may not conform to margins that developed on collapsed orogens.