A transdisciplinary and community-driven database to unravel subduction zone initiation

Fabio Crameri*, Valentina Magni, Mathew Domeier, Grace E. Shephard, Kiran Chotalia, George Cooper, Caroline M. Eakin, Antoniette Greta Grima, Derya Gürer, Ágnes Király, Elvira Mulyukova, Kalijn Peters, Boris Robert, Marcel Thielmann

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    89 Citations (Scopus)


    Subduction zones are pivotal for the recycling of Earth’s outer layer into its interior. However, the conditions under which new subduction zones initiate are enigmatic. Here, we constructed a transdisciplinary database featuring detailed analysis of more than a dozen documented subduction zone initiation events from the last hundred million years. Our initial findings reveal that horizontally forced subduction zone initiation is dominant over the last 100 Ma, and that most initiation events are proximal to pre-existing subduction zones. The SZI Database is expandable to facilitate access to the most current understanding of subduction zone initiation as research progresses, providing a community platform that establishes a common language to sharpen discussion across the Earth Science community.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number3750
    JournalNature Communications
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2020


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