Mike Searle on Ophiolite
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As the name implies, oceanic lithosphere underlies the oceans of the world.  Except when they are ophiolites, when oceanic lithosphere is thrust on top of a continental margin.  Are ophiolites a special kind of oceanic lithosphere?  Or are there peculiar tectonic circumstances that emplace denser oceanic rocks on top of lighter continental ones?  Mike Searle addresses these questions, and reveals the sequence of events that created the world's most extensive and best-preserved ophiolite - the Semail ophiolite in Oman. Mike Searle is Emeritus Professor of Earth Sciences at the University of Oxford and at the Camborne School of Mines in Cornwall.  For podcast illustrations, go to geologybites.com.
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