This page has a number of simple and more complicated, global plate
tectonics maps showing plate motions, seismicity, and other indicators
of how tectonics affects the surface of the Earth.
These maps are produced with
and make use of a range of geophysical datasets as
within iGMT or the Unified Geodynamics Earth
Science Computing Environment (UGESCE), and may be useful for
teaching or research.
For information on how to make such maps and use GMT and iGMT, see
my computing and Earth science mapping
teaching material and the Unified Geodynamics
Earth Science Computing Environment (UGESCE).
- Topography, crustal velocities, Engdahl seismicity, and Harvard CMT
Download a PDF of the same map with map center on
the Pacific or
illumination/shading: download a
- Topography, plate motions, shallow (< 50 km) seismicity and
Download a PDF with map center on
the Pacific or
- Topography, plate motions, seismicity:
Download a PDF file, centered on the
Africa. (With illumination:
The iGMT produced GMT scripts used to
make these maps can be found by following this
link to the data ftp directory.
You might also want to check out a comparison of all the colormaps
that come with GMT, as PDF files in their in their original spacing, or normalized to 0...1.
- Topography, plate boundaries, and subduction zone seismicity contour map:
This map can be useful to find rough geographic locations, etc. Slab
contours are from Gudmundsson & Sambridge's (1998) RUM model.
- Simple plate tectonic map with plate velocities:
- Global seafloor age from Mueller et al. (2008) for the
See also the animation of inferred Cenozoic seafloor age variations.
- Reconstructed seafloor age and continental drift from
et al. (2008)
et al.'s (2008) seafloor age reconstructions, as used for time
variable plate tectonic heat transport estimates by
et al. (2007) and
et al. (2009).
et al.'s (2012) seafloor age reconstructions.
Animations of Müller et al.'s (2016) seafloor age
- Müller, R.D., Seton, M., Zahirovic, S., Williams, S.E.,
Matthews, K.J., Wright, N.M., Shephard, G.E., Maloney, K.T.,
Barnett-Moore, N., Hosseinpour, M., Bower, D.J., Cannon, J.,
2016. Ocean basin evolution and global-scale plate reorganization
events since Pangea breakup, Ann. Rev. Earth Planet Sci.,
- Three dimensional visualizations
- Global and regional lithospheric deformation styles from
Shallow Global CMT
solutions Kostrov summed and colored by the mean
horizontal strain (negative: compression, zero: strike-slip, positive:
extention). See legend for bin size and depth selection criteria.
Updated: September 17, 2021.
(c) Thorsten W. Becker, 1997-2021.