Reconstructed Ages of the Oceanic Lithosphere

seafloor age grid at 000
            Ma seafloor age grid at 050
            Ma seafloor age grid at 100
            Ma
seafloor age grid at 150
            Ma seafloor age grid at 200
            Ma seafloor age grid at 250
            Ma
seafloor age grid at 300
            Ma seafloor age grid at 350
            Ma seafloor age grid at 400
            Ma


Karlsen et al. (2021) developed a model of past seafloor ages, extending back to 400 Ma. This model is based on on the TracTec algorithm developed by Karlsen et al. (2020) applied to the tectonc reconstruction of Matthews et al. (2016), which was updated according to Torsvik et al. (2019). This reconstruction extends back to 400 Ma and continues to the present day. The age grids from this seafloor age reconstruction model are available below. Note that the Karlsen et al. (2020) algorithm uses tracers to assign ages to seafloor areas. Here we apply interpolation to fill in any gaps, and we have cropped ages in continental areas, as they are defined by Matthews et al. (2016). Alternative interpolation and cropping schemes are possible.

The python code for the TracTec algorithm is available on Zenodo. Note that the seafloor ages in the Zenodo package were developed using the Matthews et al. (2016) reconstruction but without the updated tectonic for the Pacific based on Torsvik et al. (2019). The age grids supplied below do include this update.

Available for Download:

Citation for the seafloor age grids:
  • Karlsen, K.S., C.P. Conrad, M. Domeier, and R.G. Trønnes (2021), Spatiotemporal variations in surface heat flux imply a heterogeneous mantle cooling history, Geophysical Research Letters, 48, e2020GL092119, doi:10.1029/2020GL092119. [online version] [reprint] [supplement]
Citation for the seafloor age grid reconstruction method (TracTec code):
Citations for the underlying tectonic model:
  • Matthews, K. J., K. T. Maloney, S. Zahirovic, S. E. Williams, M. Seton, and R. D. Müller (2016), Global plate boundary evolution and kinematics since the late Paleozoic, Global and Planetary Change, 146(Supplement C), 226-250, doi:10.1016/j.gloplacha.2016.10.002.
  • Torsvik, T.H., B. Steinberger, G.E. Shephard, P.V. Doubrovine, C. Gaina, M Domeier, C.P. Conrad, and W.W. Sager (2019) Pacific-Panthalassic reconstructions: Overview, errata and the way forward, Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 20, 3659-3689, doi:10.1029/2019GC008402. [online version] [reprint]
    Supplemental Files: [PACIFIC.ZIP] [Pacific_EARTHBYTE_Model_R.ZIP]