Red Sea Rift
The Red Sea Rift is a spreading center between two tectonic plates, the African Plate and the Arabian Plate. It extends down the length of the Red Sea, stretching from the southern end of the Dead Sea Transform to a triple junction with the Aden Ridge and the East African Rift (the Afar Triple Junction) in the Afar Depression of eastern Africa.
The rift zone includes the island of Jabal al-Tair, formed by the basaltic stratovolcano of the same name, located northwest of the Bab al-Mandab passage at the mouth of the Red Sea, about half way between Yemen and Eritrea. The volcano erupted on 30 September 2007, after 124 years of dormancy.
The axial deep of the rift was the location of the first known hot hydrothermal brines discovered on the sea floor. Workers from 1949 through the 1960s confirmed the presence of hot, 60 °C, saline brines and associated metalliferous muds. The hot solutions were emanating from an active subseafloor rift.
- Degens, Egon T. (ed.), 1969, Hot Brines and Recent Heavy Metal Deposits in the Red Sea, 600 pp, Springer-Verlag
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