West Tech Breakfast: Finding Lost Tectonic Plate Fragments Using Seismic Tomography ... To Be RESCHEDULED

Complete Title: Finding Lost Tectonic Plate Fragments Using Seismic Tomography - Geological and Hydrocarbon Implications Along the Andean Cordillera     Sponsored by: Schlumberger and WesternGeco

Meeting Location:

Schlumberger Facility
10001 Richmond Ave., Q Auditorium
Houston, TX  77042

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Speaker: Jonny Wu, Dept. of Earth and Atmospheric Science, University of Houston

Plate tectonic reconstructions of Nazca subduction under the Andes remain debated because the Nazca-Farallon seafloor has been subducted.  Here I show a novel approach to plate tectonics that that involves ‘unsubducting’ lost oceanic plates in Earth’s mantle that are imaged from mantle seismic tomography.  Subducted Nazca slabs were mapped from tomography using 3D seismic interpretation-style workflows.  Tomographic velocities extracted along the slabs reveal details of subducted features.  Unfolding of the mapped slabs (i.e. structurally restorations) allow their pre-subduction geometry to be estimated and input into quantitative plate reconstructions.    The next-generation ‘tomographic’ plate models reveal that Nazca subduction along the Andes was not fully continuous since the Mesozoic but included episodic divergent phases.  At the Neuquen basin, Argentina, foredeep sedimentation and compression initiation were linked to deep interactions between the Nazca slab and lower mantle.  I discuss possible hydrocarbon implications along the Andean Cordillera from the new plate tectonic insights.  

Speaker Biography: Jonny Wu, Dept. of Earth and Atmospheric Science, University of Houston 
Jonny Wu is an Assistant Professor in structural geology, tectonics and mantle structure at the Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, University of Houston.  Wu is a Canadian and conducted his graduate studies at Royal Holloway, University of London, UK, followed by a postdoctoral fellowship at National Taiwan University.  Wu formerly worked at Shell Canada as an exploration geologist on the Canadian East Coast and Mackenzie Delta-Beaufort between 1998 to 2004.  His research interests are in global plate tectonics, East Asia tectonics, structural ‘sandbox’ modeling, and sedimentary basins.  Wu’s work on Andes Mountains plate tectonics was published in the journal Nature earlier this year and featured on the front cover.
Breakfast will be available starting at 7:00 AM
Technical Talk will start at 7:30
Event will end by 8:30


4/8/2020 7:00 AM - 8:30 AM
Eastern Standard Time

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