Turkish Journal of Earth Sciences




Plate tectonic reconstructions have been employed in geosciences since 1970s, in the context of hydrocarbon exploration, regional geology and paleobiology. Such studies have given valuable inputs for climate and geodynamic computations, present-day mantle structure, models of plate motion, and the interpretation of the drift of hotspots, true polar wander (TPW), sea level and stratigraphic signals. However, geodynamic models generated in the past by incorporating global plate tectonic reconstructions have limitations. To overcome this, GPlates software brings forward a new era of interactive plate tectonic reconstruction software integrated with GIS databases that incorporates a wide variety of geological and geophysical data. Besides modelling tectonic and crustal evolution, GPlates has also been used in visualizing paleogeography and paleobathymetry, in understanding deep carbon cycle, subduction zone initiation, mantle evolution, investigating earthquakes and predicting future supercontinents. the software has been widely used in hydrocarbon exploration along the passive conjugate margins such as from the margins of South America and Africa and has provided promising results in acquiring new and more reliable prospecting criteria for petroleum systems. Additionally, it has become an integral tool for paleolatitude calculations, modelling of paleoclimate and paleoenvironment. This article reviews key plate reconstructions that have been carried out using GPlates, the typical constraints and the set of input parameters.

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