Revised Tectonic Reconstruction of the Gulf of Mexico and Northern Caribbean Region (Paleoceanographic Mapping Project Report No. 17-1286)
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Using the Pindell and Barrett (1987, in press) model for the evolution of the Caribbean as a starting point, we present 14 plate reconstructions (and a color animation) illustrating the evolution of the Caribbean region for the period 17 5 to 0 Ma. The new aspects of these maps are the result of: 1) Utilization of the Evans and Sutherland PS300 interactive 3-D color graphics display computer to project color-coded tectonic elements onto a spherical surface and to quantify the rotation parameters; 2) Subdivision of complex plate boundary zones into small rigid blocks; 3) Incorporation of results from recent Univ. of Texas Caribbean studies of the Yucatan Basin, Cayman Trough, Colombian Basin, Panama, Hispaniola, and Puerto Rico; 5) Incorporation of lithofacies and lithologic assemblages from the University of Chicago paleogeographic data base; 6) Use of the new model (Klitgord and Schouten, 1986) for the evolution of the North, Central and Southern Atlantic Oceans; 7) Assumption that the basement of Cuba is the same as stable Bahamas Platform; 8) Palinspastic restoration of the volume of the Gulf of Mexico and the North American continental margin based on total tectonic subsidence model of Dunbar and Sawyer (1986); 9) Juxtaposition of Demerara Plateau and Guinea Plateau to constrain northern South American -central African fit.