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About The Afar Stratoid project - 2019 to 2022

During continental breakup the locus of plate extension, associated thinning and rift valley subsidence is thought to move through time from rift border faults to the new plate boundary at the rift axis. It is unclear how the migration of extension impacts on the timing, type, and distribution of volcanism and how the newly formed zones of extension at the rift axis interact to form the breakup boundary between two new plates.


In this project we will combine different disciplines (structural geology, stratigraphy, geochemistry, petrology, and geophysics) to obtain new constraints on the distribution of strain and magmatism in Afar (Ethiopia). We will target two locations, the Afar rift floor where tectonic extension and magmatism is currently active, and the Afar rift margin where tectonic extension is thought to have been focused in the past.


Our aim is to understand whether a temporal correlation exists between extension and subsidence along the rift margin and the genesis, rise and emplacement of the Afar flood basalts in the rift floor (‘Afar stratoids’). Another important focus is to understand whether extension and magma resurfacing was distributed across the rift floor or it localized across narrow rifts that have progressively migrated.

Fundings Agencies

Ministero dell'IstruzioneMinistero dell'Università e della Ricerca (MIUR) - PRIN Bando 2017 - €651 990

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