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Episodes 2008; 31(1): 82-91

Published online March 1, 2008


Copyright © International Union of Geological Sciences.

Structure and evolution of the continental margin off Norway and the Barents Sea

Jan Inge Faleide1, Filippos Tsikalas1,3, Asbjørn Johan Breivik1, Rolf Mjelde2, Oliver Ritzmann1, Øyvind Engen1, Jonas Wilson1,4, and Olav Eldholm2

1Department of Geosciences, University of Oslo, P.O. Box 1047 Blindern, N-0316 Oslo, Norway. E-mail: j.i.faleide@geo.uio.no
2Department of Earth Science, University of Bergen, Allegaten 41, N-5007 Bergen, Norway.
3Present address: Eni Norge AS, P.O. Box 101 Forus, N-4064 Stavanger, Norway.
4Present address: StatoilHydro, N-0246 Oslo, Norway.

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0) which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The Norwegian Margin formed in response to early Cenozoic continental breakup and subsequent opening of the Norwegian-Greenland Sea. There is a well-defined margin segmentation and the various segments are characterized by distinct crustal properties, structural and magmatic styles, and post-opening history of vertical motions. The sedimentary basins at the conjugate continental margins off Norway and Greenland and in the western Barents Sea developed as a result of a series of post-Caledonian rift episodes until early Cenozoic time, when complete continental separation took place.