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Earth science

Palaeo-altimetry of Tibet

Naturevolume 444pageE4 (2006) | Download Citation

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Abstract

Arising from: D. B. Rowley & B. S. Currie Nature 439, 677–681 (2006); Rowley & Currie reply

The determination of palaeo-elevation has emerged in the past 15 years as an important tool for constraining physical processes that govern the formation of mountain belts. Rowley and Currie1 report palaeo-elevations for the Lunpola basin within the Tibetan plateau and claim that these elevations are incompatible with 'mantle-thickening models' for mountain formation. We show here that their data do not support this conclusion and, indeed, are consistent with its opposite. The Tibetan plateau could have risen by a kilometre or more as its dense lower lithosphere sank into the underlying mantle.

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References

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Affiliations

  1. Department of Geological Sciences and Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Science (CIRES), University of Colorado, Boulder, 80309-0399, Colorado, USA

    • Peter Molnar
  2. Institute of Geophysics and Tectonics, School of Earth and Environment, University of Leeds, Leeds, LS2 9JT, UK

    • Gregory A. Houseman
  3. Department of Earth Sciences, Oxford University, Oxford, OX1 3PR, UK

    • Philip C. England

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Correspondence to Peter Molnar.

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https://doi.org/10.1038/nature05368

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