Tomographic Evidence for Localized Lithospheric Shear Along the Altyn Tagh Fault

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Seismic tomography across the Altyn Tagh fault, at the north edge of the Tibetan Plateau, reveals a low P-wave velocity anomaly below the fault down to 140 kilometers. This anomaly probably reflects strike-slip shear in the lithosphere. Slip-partitioning may also induce a wedge of crust from the Tarim Basin to plunge into the mantle.

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