Diaz, J., Torne, M., Vergés, J., Jiménez-Munt, I., Martí, J., Carbonell, R., Schimmel, M., Geyer, A., Ruiz, M., García-Castellanos, D., Alvarez-Marrón, J., Brown, D., Villaseñor, A., Ayala, C., Palomeras, I., Fernandez, M., & Gallart, J. (2021). Four decades of geophysical research on Iberia and adjacent margins. Earth-Science Reviews, 103841. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.earscirev.2021.103841


The dimensions, the geographical position and the complex geological history of the Iberian Peninsula makes it a unique and singular target to study its crustal and upper mantle structure and geodynamical evolution using geophysical methods. The lithospheric structure beneath Iberia has been investigated since the 1970’s using deep multichannel seismic reflection and refraction/wide-angle reflection profiling. Gravimetric and magnetic data were acquired following the deployment of permanent and temporary stations, mostly during the 1990’s. Beginning in the late 1990’s, the progressive use of Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) instruments contributed to monitor the present-day motions. During the last decades, numerous geological and geophysical surveys have investigated the Iberian lithosphere and upper mantle in the onshore and offshore regions, the most recent ones related to the TopoIberia project. The approach developed in this contribution is twofold. Firstly, we summarize the available geophysical information over Iberia, from focusing on the upper crust to the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary and the transition zone marking the bottom of the upper mantle. Results of GNSS data, potential fields, controlled source seismic profiles, magnetotelluric data, body and surface wave tomography, receiver functions and 2D and 3D lithospheric modeling are reviewed and compared. Secondly, we focus on the areas of greater geodynamic interest and the regions where inconsistencies within the geophysical results, or contradictions in their tectonic interpretation exist, identifying the major questions that are still under debate. Besides shedding light to the state of knowledge and pointing out present-day research challenges, this review provides a tool for the integration of the diverse geophysical datasets with the surface geology and geodynamical processes that are interpreted to have built the complex geology of the Iberian Peninsula.

Reference article

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