Dictionary of Geotourism

2020 Edition
| Editors: Anze Chen, Young Ng, Erkuang Zhang, Mingzhong Tian

Plate Suture

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-13-2538-0_1911

Synonym: Suture zone

The term plate suture generally refers to a zone that is formed by the collision of two continental plates. Plate sutures represent palaeo-plate boundaries and therefore are an important basis for the reconstruction of palaeo-plates. The theory of plate tectonics postulates that the movement of oceanic plates causes them to collide and merge with continental plates and subsequently leads to deformation of the continental margins. The original remnants of the oceanic crust (usually in the form of an ophiolite complex) are retained in this deformed zone. It is generally accepted that this collision zone is the location of the original suture. When the Indian Plate drifted northwards, it collided with the ancient Eurasian continent, which led to the closure of the Neo-Tethys Ocean and the formation of the Indian Plate-Yarlung Tsangpo Plate suture zone. This zone contains an ophiolite complex that contains the remnants of the Neo-Tethys oceanic crust as well as...

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