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Authors: Branca, S.* 
Coltelli, M.* 
De Beni, E.* 
Wijbrans, J.* 
Title: Geological evolution of Mount Etna volcano (Italy) from earliest products until the first central volcanism (between 500 and 100 ka ago) inferred from geochronological and stratigraphic data
Issue Date: 2007
Series/Report no.: / (2007)
DOI: 10.1007/s00531-006-0152-0
Keywords: Mount Etna
40Ar/39Ar dating
Subject Classification04. Solid Earth::04.04. Geology::04.04.99. General or miscellaneous 
Abstract: We present an updated geological evolution of Mount Etna volcano based on new 40Ar/39Ar age determinations and stratigraphic data integrating the previous K/Ar ages. Volcanism began at about 500 ka ago through submarine eruptions on the Gela–Catania Foredeep basin. About 300 ka ago fissure-type eruptions occurred on the ancient alluvial plain of the Simeto River forming a lava plateau. From about 220 ka ago the eruptive activity was localised mainly along the Ionian coast where fissure-type eruptions built a shield volcano. Between 129 and 126 ka ago volcanism shifted westward toward the central portion of the present volcano (Val Calanna–Moscarello area). Furthermore, scattered effusive eruptions on the southern periphery of Etna edifice occurred until about 121 ka ago. The stabilization of the plumbing system on the Valle del Bove area is marked by the building of two small polygenic edifices, Tarderia and Rocche volcanoes. Their eruptive activity was rather coeval ending 106 and 102 ka ago, respectively. During the investigated time-span volcanism in Etna region was controlled by a main E–W extensional tectonic related to the reactivation of Malta Escarpment fault system in eastern Sicily.
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