A synthesis of tectonically-related stratigraphy in the North Atlantic-Arctic region from Aalenian to Cenomanian time

The stratigraphic evolution in the North Atlantic-Arctic region from Aalenian (187 Ma) to Cenomanian
(97 Ma) time is described in relation to four tectonic phases. The first two are related to the failed attempt
of the opening of the North Atlantic in Jurassic time. Rift basins formed as a response to extensional
forces associated with a clockwise rotation of the North American (Laurentian)/Greenland plate and a
clockwise rotation of the African plate during the opening of the Tethys. Regional uplift is suggested
north of the northward migrating pivot point in the North Atlantic, with responding diachronous
development of fan delta sedimentation. The last two phases are related to the slightly anticlockwise
rotation of the Greenland plate giving rise to compressional tectonics and uplift along many basins within
the region in Neocomian time (Phase III), while extensional tectonics dominated when further rotation
and northwest migration of the Greenland plate proceeded in Aptian-Albian time (Phase IV). The
stratigraphic evolution within the individual basins ftanking the North Atlantic and the NorwegianGreenland
Sea is to a certain degree different, but nevertheless reftects the paleopositions of the basins within the plate tectonic framework through time. One basin may reftect compression and uplift in the same time span (Tectonic Phase) as another basin may be within an extensional regime, i.e. Haltenbanken vs. Faeroe Basin (Fig. 2). These differences fingerprint the tectonic evolution, and it is the idea of this synthesis that the stratigraphic evolution of the individual basins as well as their differences follow a certain pattem and is suggested to be govemed by an overall plate tectonic model for the North Atlantic within the Aalenian-Cenomanian time span.