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Topographic divides formed by active flexural folding in the NE marginal zone of the Tibetan Plateau
- Chen, Peng, Lin, Aiming
- Geomorphology 2019 v.332 pp. 1-9
- drainage systems, geophysics, topography, China, Yellow River
- Topographic divides along the northeastern marginal zone of the Tibetan Plateau separate tributary drainage systems that flow into the Yellow River. Field investigations and topographic analysis indicate that: i) Late Quaternary–Holocene sedimentary sequences are deformed into a series of left-stepping WNW–ESE-trending en echelon flexural folds; ii) the folds form topographic divides that separate drainage systems that flow into the Yellow River; and iii) the regional axis of maximum compressive stress, as inferred from flexural folds and active fault-related structures, trends ENE–WSW, consistent with geophysical and seismic data. These results demonstrate that the topographic divides formed through active flexural folding and faulting in the northeastern marginal zone of the Tibetan Plateau, corresponding to the ongoing northeastward shortening of the plateau accommodating the Eurasia-India continental collision.