Distinct variations of crustal shear wave velocity structure and radial anisotropy beneath the North China Craton and tectonic implications

TitleDistinct variations of crustal shear wave velocity structure and radial anisotropy beneath the North China Craton and tectonic implications
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsCheng C, Chen L, Yao HJ, Jiang MM, Wang BY
JournalGondwana Research
Date Published2013/01
Type of ArticleArticle
ISBN Number1342-937X
Accession NumberWOS:000312746000003
Keywords2-station analysis; Ambient noise tomography; ambient seismic noise; Crustal deformation; Crustal shear velocity; granulite xenoliths; laminated lower crust; liaodong peninsula; lithosphere beneath; lower continental-crust; metamorphic core complex; North China Craton; ordos basin; Radial anisotropy; sino-korean craton

This study presents the crustal shear wave velocity structure and radial anisotropy along two linear seismic arrays across the North China Craton (NCC) from ambient noise tomography. About a half to one year long ambient noise data from 87 stations were used for obtaining the inter-station surface wave empirical Green's functions (EGFs) from cross-correlation. Rayleigh and Love dispersion curves within the period band 5-30 s were measured from the EGFs of the vertical and transverse components, respectively. These dispersion data were then used to determine the crustal shear wave velocity structure (V-SV and V-SH) and radial anisotropy (2(V-SH-V-SV)/(V-SH +V-SV)) from point-wise linear inversion with constraints from receiver function analysis. Our results reveal substantial structural variations among different parts of the NCC. The Bohai Bay Basin in the eastern NCC is underlain by a thin crust (-30 km) with relatively low velocities (particularly V-SV) and large positive radial anisotropy in the middle to lower crust. Such a crustal structure is no longer of a cratonic type and may have resulted from the widespread tectonic extension and intensive magmatism in this region since late Mesozoic. Beneath the Ordos Basin in the western NCC, the crust is relatively thicker (>= 40 km) and well stratified, and presents a large-scale low velocity zone in the middle to lower crust and overall weak radial anisotropy except for a localized lower crust anomaly. The overall structural features of this region resemble those of typical Precambrian shields, in agreement with the long-term stability of the region. The crustal structure under the Trans North China Orogen (TNCO, central NCC) is more complicated and characterized by smaller scale velocity variations, strong positive radial anisotropy in the middle crust and rapid change to weak-to-negative anisotropy in the lower crust. These features may reflect complex deformations and crust-mantle interactions, probably associated with tectonic extension and magmatic underplating during the Mesozoic to Cenozoic evolution of the region. Our structural images in combination with previous seismic, geological and geochemical observations suggest that the Phanerozoic lithospheric reactivation and destruction processes may have affected the crust (especially the middle and lower crust) of the eastern NCC, and the effect probably extended to the TNCO, but may have minor influence on the crust of the western part of the craton. (c) 2012 International Association for Gondwana Research. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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