Dynamic topography as expression for intraplate tectonics, plume activity and mantle dynamics
Co-organized by TS14
Convener: Lorenzo ColliECSECS | Co-conveners: Prof. Dr. Ulrich Anton Glasmacher, Mark Brandon, Hans-Peter Bunge, Anke Friedrich, Francois Guillocheau, Kurt Stüwe, Massimiliano Zattin
| Attendance Fri, 08 May, 14:00–15:45 (CEST)

Geoscientists have long assumed that variations in the Earth’s topography are primarily due to variations within the lithosphere (density, thickness, flexural rigidity), and are compensated isostatically within the asthenosphere. But geodynamic considerations predict that mantle convection should cause long wavelength deflections of the Earth’s surface, with length scales > 500 km and vertical amplitudes as large as 1 to 2 km. The largest deflections seem to be associated with subduction zones and plumes. These long-wavelength deflects are called “dynamic topography” given that they are caused by dynamic pressures associated with convection.

Over the last decade, there has been increasing interest in resolving the long-term evolution of dynamic topography. Methods include global dynamic models; kinematic reconstruction of plate motions and plate boundaries; geomorphic and stratigraphic studies of basins, coastal terraces, and rivers; paleotopography studies using paleotemperature or precipitation isotopes, erosion studies using thermochronology; landform studies; and stratigraphic analysis at continental scales to map hiatus area. Geodynamic methods have expanded now to include adjoint inversion methods, which allow a more optimal integration between observations and theory. The simultaneous growth of observations and theoretical capabilities provides us with unprecedented opportunity to test the underlying assumptions of dynamic Earth models. This transdisciplinary session brings together observational and theoretical scientists to discuss the scope and format of established and nascent convection related observables, and welcomes contributions that highlight the noisy nature of observables while exploring methods to handle the impact of uncertainty in the geodynamic data assimilation framework.