Alessio Lavecchia successfully defended his PhD
The thesis investigates the relationship between far-field forces and mantle plume-related stresses in the Afar Rift and Main Ethiopian Rift, with the aim to understand how these two factors influenced the spreading history in the region and the transition from continental breakup to seafloor spreading conditions.
Obtained results suggest that the main driving factor for lithospheric spreading consists in the force field related to the Arabia-Eurasia subduction system, but the presence of plume determined the focusing of deformation in the region. Furthermore, the lithospheric structure, whose origin results from the Panafrican orogeny, and the presence of melt at various depths in the lithosphere, also influenced the spreading history in Afar.
The thesis is written within the field of computational geodynamics. The work has been conducted at Simula Research Laboratory and Utrecht University
The adjudication committee
- Prof. dr. R. Buck,Earth Institute, Columbia University, Palisades, NY
- Prof. dr. G. Corti, Università degli studi di Firenze, Italy
- Prof. dr. D.Dingwell, Ludwig-Maximilians Universität München, Germany
- Prof. dr. T. Gerya, Department of Earth Sciences, ETH Zürich, Switzerland
- Dr. C. Thieulot, Faculty of Geosciences, Utrecht University, Netherlands
Chair of the disputation
- Prof. dr. G.J. van der Zwaan, Utrecht University, Netherlands
- Prof. dr. S. Cloetingh, Faculty of Geosciences, Utrecht University, Netherlands
- Dr. F. Beekman, Faculty of Geosciences, Utrecht University, Netherlands
- Dr. S. Clark, Simula Research Laboratory, Oslo, Norway