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Viscoplastic model of mountain building

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  • UserElvinas Ribinskas, DAMTP
  • ClockMonday 20 February 2023, 13:00-14:00
  • HouseMR5, CMS.

If you have a question about this talk, please contact Prof. John R. Taylor.

Accretionary wedges are collections of sediment that form at convergent plate margins. On the surface they often look like mountain ranges. Modelling these structures allows to understand how they evolve and what are mechanical properties of the sediments that form them.

I will present a viscoplastic thin-film model of an accretionary wedge, where an initially uniform horizontal layer of fluid is scraped off by a vertical backstop. The model is found to have three asymptotic self-similar regimes that are controlled by the dimensionless Bingham number.

Analogue experiments inspired by the model geometry are done to test the model predictions. Surface buckling is observed in all of the experiments, resembling real accretionary wedges. I will discuss some features of the buckles and ideas in which this phenomenon might be studied.

This talk is part of the Geophysical and Environmental Processes series.

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