Science China Earth Sciences

, Volume 61, Issue 4, pp 386–405 | Cite as

Oceanic plate subduction history in the western Pacific Ocean: Constraint from late Mesozoic evolution of the Tan-Lu Fault Zone

  • Guang Zhu
  • Cheng Liu
  • Chengchuan Gu
  • Shuai Zhang
  • Yunjian Li
  • Nan Su
  • Shiye Xiao


The NE- to NNE-striking Tan-Lu Fault Zone (TLFZ) is the largest fault zone in East China, and a typical representative for the circum-Pacific tectonics. Its late Mesozoic evolution resulted from subduction of the Paleo-Pacific Plate, and can be used for indication to the subduction history. The TLFZ reactivated at the end of Middle Jurassic since its origination in Middle Triassic. This phase of sinistral motion can only be recognized along the eastern edge of the Dabie-Sulu orogenis, and indicates initiation of the Paleo-Pacific (Izanagi) Plate subduction beneath the East China continent. After the Late Jurassic standstill, the fault zone experienced intense sinistral faulting again at the beginning of Early Cretaceous under N-S compression that resulted from the NNW-ward, low-angle, high-speed subduction of the Izanagi Plate. It turned into normal faulting in the rest of Early Cretaceous, which was simultaneous with the peak destruction of the North China Craton caused by backarc extension that resulted from rollback of the subducting Izanagi Plate. The TLFZ was subjected to sinistral, transpressive displacement again at the end of Early Cretaceous. This shortening event led to termination of the North China Craton destruction. The fault zone suffered local normal faulting in Late Cretaceous due to the far-field, weak backarc extension. The late Mesozoic evolution of the TLFZ show repeated alternation between the transpressive strike-slip motion and normal faulting. Each of the sinistral faulting event took place in a relatively short period whereas every normal faulting event lasted in a longer period, which are related to the subduction way and history of the Paleo-Pacific Plates.


Tan-Lu Fault Zone Sinistral displacement Extensional activity Izanagi Plate Pacific plate 


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This study was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 41472186 & 91414301) and the National Key Basic Research Program of China (Grant No. 2016YFC0600102).

Supplementary material

11430_2017_9136_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (365 kb)
Appendix 1 Results of LA-ICP-MS zircon U-Pb isotopic dating for dikes from the southern Zhangbaling part of the Ta-Lu Fault Zone


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Copyright information

© Science China Press and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Guang Zhu
    • 1
  • Cheng Liu
    • 1
  • Chengchuan Gu
    • 1
  • Shuai Zhang
    • 1
  • Yunjian Li
    • 1
  • Nan Su
    • 1
  • Shiye Xiao
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Resource and Environmental EngineeringHefei University of TechnologyHefeiChina

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