Holding Up Tibet

The continent-continent collision between India and Asia about 50
million years ago created the high-standing Tibetan Plateau. Kosarev
et al. (p. 1306) imaged the structure of the crust and uppermost
mantle across the plateau using teleseismic P waves that were
converted by changes in structural features into S waves. These
images allow them to infer a continuous north-dipping structure
within the Indian lithosphere that may be related to stable
subduction and a discontinuous, south-dipping structure within the
Asian lithosphere that suggests a weak region that is being broken up
by the collision. These structures suggest that the rheology and
composition of the Indian lithosphere are different from the Asian