Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences at the University of Colorado Boulder

Peter Molnar Group

Professor of Geological Sciences, University of Colorado at Boulder
Fellow, Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences
Ph.D., Geology (Seismology), 1970, Columbia University
A.B., Physics, 1965, Oberlin College


Current Projects

Pliocene El Nino

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Western Tibet Seismology

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Tibet surface wave seismology

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New Zealand Anisotropy

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Asia Kinematics

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New Zealand - Southern Alps

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Northern Tibet and Hydrological Cycle

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Peter Molnar Group in CIRES news

Peter Molnar, 1943-2022

CIRES, Geological Sciences, CU Boulder mourn loss of exceptional scholar who inspired greatness
OceansSolid Earth


Mohadjer, S., R. Bendick, A. Ischuk, S. Kuzikov, A. Kostuk, U. Saydullaev, S. Lodi, D. M. Kakar, A. Wasy, M. A. Khan, P. Molnar, R. Bilham, and A. V. Zubovich (2010), Partitioning of India-Eurasia convergence in the Pamir-Hindu Kush from GPS measurements, Geophys. Res. Lett., 37, L04305, doi:10.1029/2009GL041737.

Harig, C., P. Molnar, and G. A. Houseman (2010), Lithospheric thinning and localization of deformation during Rayleigh-Taylor instability with nonlinear rheology and implications for intracontinental magmatism, J. Geophys. Res., 115, B02205, doi:10.1029/2009JB006422.

Dayem, K. E., P. Molnar, D. S. Battisti, and G. H. Roe (2010), Lessons learned from oxygen isotopes in modern precipitation applied to interpretation of speleothem records of paleoclimate from eastern Asia, Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., 295, 219-230.

Molnar, P., W. R. Boos, and D. S. Battisti (2010), Orographic controls on climate and paleoclimate of Asia: Thermal and mechanical roles for the Tibetan Plateau, Annual Reviews of Earth & Planetary Science, 38, 77-102.

Champagnac, J.-D., D.-Y. Yuan, W.-P. Ge, P. Molnar, and W.-J. Zheng (2010), Slip rate at the northeastern front of the Qilian Shan, China, Terra Nova, 22, 180-187.

Molnar, P. (2010), Deuterium and oxygen isotopes, paleoelevations of the Sierra Nevada, and Cenozoic climate, Geol. Soc. Amer. Bull., 122, 1106-1115.

Duret, F., N. M. Shapiro, Z. Cao, V. Levin, P. Molnar, and S. Roecker (2010), Surface wave dispersion across Tibet: Direct evidence for radial anisotropy in the crust, Geophys. Res. Lett., 37, L16306, doi:10.1029/2010GL043811.

Beavan, J., P. Denys, M. Denham, B. Hager, T. Herring, and P. Molnar (2010), Distribution of present-day vertical deformation across the Southern Alps, New Zealand, from 10 years of GPS data, Geophys. Res. Lett., 37, L16305, doi:10.1029/2010GL044165.

Molnar, P., and K. E. Dayem (2010), Major intracontinental strike-slip faults and contrasts in lithospheric strength, Geosphere, 6, 444-467.

Hatzfeld, D., and P. Molnar (2010), Comparisons of the kinematics and deep structures of the Zagros and Himalaya and of the Iranian and Tibetan plateaus and geodynamic implications, Rev. Geophys., 48, RG2005, doi:10.1029/2009RG000304.


Dayem, K. E., P. Molnar, M. K. Clark, and G. A. Houseman (2009), Far-field lithospheric deformation in Tibet during continental collision, Tectonics, 28, TC6005, doi:10.1029/2008TC002344.

Dayem, KE; Houseman, GA; Molnar, P (2009), Localization of shear along a lithospheric strength discontinuity: Application of a continuous deformation model to the boundary between Tibet and the Tarim Basin. Tectonics, 28 , doi: 10.1029/2008TC002264

Dayem, KE; Molnar, P; Clark, MK; Houseman, GA (2009), Far-field lithospheric deformation in Tibet during continental collision. Tectonics, 28 , Art. No. TC6005, doi: 10.1029/2008TC002344

Jochum, M; Fox-Kemper, B; Molnar, PH; Shields, C (2009), Differences in the Indonesian seaway in a coupled climate model and their relevance to Pliocene climate and El Nino. Paleoceanography, 24 , Art. No. PA1212, doi: 10.1029/2008PA001678

Molnar, P; Stock, JM (2009), Slowing of India's convergence with Eurasia since 20 Ma and its implications for Tibetan mantle dynamics. Tectonics, 28 , Art. No. TC3001, doi: 10.1029/2008TC002271

Molnar, P. (2009), The state of interactions among tectonics, erosion, and climate: A polemic. GSA Today, 19 (7) 44-45, doi: 10.1130/GSATG00GW.1


Burov, EB; Molnar, R (2008), Small and large-amplitude gravitational instability of an elastically compressible viscoelastic Maxwell solid overlying an inviscid incompressible fluid: Dependence of growth rates on wave number and elastic constants at low Deborah numbers. Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., 275 (4-Mar) 370-381, doi: 10.1016/j.epsl.2008.08.032

Harig, C; Molnar, P; Houseman, GA (2008), Rayleigh-Taylor instability under a shear stress free top boundary condition and its relevance to removal of mantle lithosphere from beneath the Sierra Nevada. Tectonics, 27 (6) , Art. No. TC6019, doi: 10.1029/2007TC002241

Molnar, P (2008), Closing of the Central American Seaway and the ice age: A critical review. Paleoceanography, 23 (1) , Art. No. PA2201, doi: 10.1029/2007PA001574


England, P., P. Molnar, and F. Richter (2007), John Perry's neglected critique of Kelvin's age for the Earth: A missed opportunity in geodynamics, GSA Today, 17(1), 4-9.

Champagnae, JD; Molnar, P; Anderson, RS; Sue, C; Delacou, B (2007), Quaternary erosion-induced isostatic rebound in the western Alps. Geology, 35 (3) 195-198, doi: 10.1130/G23053A.1

Dayem, KE; Noone, DC; Molnar, P (2007), Tropical western Pacific warm pool and maritime continent precipitation rates and their contrasting relationships with the Walker Circulation. J. Geophys. Res.-Atmos., 112 (D6), Art. No. D06101, doi: 10.1029/2006JD007870

England, PC; Molnar, P; Richter, FM (2007), Kelvin, Perry and the age of the earth. Am. Scientist, 95 (4) 342-349

Garzione, CN; Molnar, P; Libarkin, JC; MacFadden, BJ (2007), Reply to Comment on "Rapid late Miocene rise of the Bolivian Altiplano: Evidence for removal of mantle lithosphere" by Garzione et al. (2006), Earth Planet. Sci. Lett. 241 (2006) 543-556. Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., 259 (4-Mar) 630-633, doi: 10.1016/j.epsl.2007.04.054

Huybers, P; Molnar, P (2007), Tropical cooling and the onset of North American glaciation. Clim. Past., 3 (3) 549-557

Jaupart, C; Molnar, P; Cottrell, E (2007), Instability of a chemically dense layer heated from below and overlain by a deep less viscous fluid. J. Fluid Mech., 572 433-469, doi: 10.1017/S0022112006003521

Molnar, P (2007), An examination of evidence used to infer late cenozoic "Uplift" of mountain belts and other high terrain: What scientific question does such evidence pose?. J. Geol. Soc. India, 70 (3) 395-410

Molnar, P; Anderson, RS; Anderson, SP (2007), Tectonics, fracturing of rock, and erosion. J. Geophys. Res.-Earth Surf., 112 (F3) , Art. No. F03014, doi: 10.1029/2005JF000433

Molnar, P; Cane, MA (2007), Early pliocene (pre-Ice Age) El Nino-like global climate: Which El Nino?. Geosphere, 3 (5) 337-365, doi: 10.1130/GES00103.1

Molnar, P; Garzione, CN (2007), Bounds on the viscosity coefficient of continental lithosphere from removal of mantle lithosphere beneath the Altiplano and Eastern Cordillera. Tectonics, 26 (2) , Art. No. TC2013, doi: 10.1029/2006TC001964

Zhang, PZ; Molnar, P; Xu, XW (2007), Late Quaternary and present-day rates of slip along the Altyn Tagh Fault, northern margin of the Tibetan Plateau. Tectonics, 26 (5) , Art. No. TC5010, doi: 10.1029/2006TC002014


Anderson, RS; Molnar, P; Kessler, MA (2006), Features of glacial valley profiles simply explained. J. Geophys. Res.-Earth Surf., 111 (F1) , Art. No. F01004, doi: 10.1029/2005JF000344

Garzione, CN; Molnar, P; Libarkin, JC; MacFadden, BJ (2006), Rapid late Miocene rise of the Bolivian Altiplano: Evidence for removal of mantle lithosphere. Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., 241 (4-Mar) 543-556, doi: 10.1016/j.epsl.2005.11.026

Molnar, P; Anderson, RS; Kier, G; Rose, J (2006), Relationships among probability distributions of stream discharges in floods, climate, bed load transport, and river incision. J. Geophys. Res.-Earth Surf., 111 (F2) , Art. No. F02001, doi: 10.1029/2005JF000310

Molnar, P; Houseman, GA; England, PC (2006), Earth science - Palaeo-altimetry of Tibet. Nature, 444 (7117) E4-E4, doi: 10.1038/nature05368


Brown, ET; Molnar, P; Bourles, DL (2005), Comment on "Slip-rate measurements on the Karakorum Fault may imply secular variations in fault motion". Science, 309 (5739) , doi: 10.1126/science.1112508

England, P; Molnar, P (2005), Late Quaternary to decadal velocity fields in Asia. J. Geophys. Res.-Solid Earth, 110 (B12) , Art. No. B12401, doi: 10.1029/2004JB003541

Hilley, GE; Burgmann, R; Zhang, PZ; Molnar, P (2005), Bayesian inference of plastosphere viscosities near the Kunlun Fault, northern Tibet. Geophys. Res. Lett., 32 (1) , Art. No. L01302, doi: 10.1029/2004GL021658

Molnar, P (2005), Mio-pliocene growth of the Tibetan Plateau and evolution of East Asian climate.Palaeontologia Electronica, 8, 8.1.2A, 23p, 625KB;

Molnar, P (2005), An appreciation. J. Geol. Soc. India, 66 (2) 252-252


Jade, S., B. C. Bhatt, R. Bendick, V. K. Gaur, P. Molnar, M. B. Anand, and D. Kumar (2004), GPS measurements from the Ladakh Himalaya, India: Preliminary tests of plate-like or continuous deformation in Tibet, Geol. Soc. Amer. Bull., 116, 1385-1391.

Wilson, C. K., C. H. Jones, P. Molnar, A. F. Sheehan, and O. S. Boyd (2004), Distributed deformation in the lower crust and upper mantle beneath a continental strike-slip fault zone: Marlborough fault system, South Island, New Zealand, Geology, 32, 837-840.

Cottrell, E., C. Jaupart, and P. Molnar (2004), Marginal stability of thick continental lithosphere, Geophys. Res. Lett., 31, L18612, doi:10.1029/2004GL020332.

Molnar, P. (2004), Interactions among topographically induced elastic stress, static fatigue, and valley incision, J. Geophys. Res., 109, F02010, doi:10.1029/2003JF000097.

Molnar, P. (2004), Late Cenozoic increase in accumulation rates of terrestrial sediment: How might climate change have affected erosion rates?, Ann. Rev. Earth Planet. Sci., 32, 67-89.

Molnar, P., and C. H. Jones (2004), A test of laboratory based rheological parameters of olivine from an analysis of late Cenozoic convective removal of mantle lithosphere beneath the Sierra Nevada, California, USA, Geophys. J. Int., 156, 555-564.

Molnar, P., and G. A. Houseman (2004), Effects of buoyant crust on the gravitational instability of thickened mantle lithosphere at zones of intracontinental convergence, Geophys. J. Int., 158, 1134-1150.

Shapiro, N. M., M. H. Ritzwoller, P. Molnar, and V. Levin (2004), Thinning and flow of Tibetan crust constrained by the seismic anisotropy, Science, 305, 233-236.

Zhang, P.-Z., Z.-k. Shen, M. Wang, W.-j. Gan, R. Bürgmann, P. Molnar, Q. Wang, Z.-j. Niu, J.-z. Sun, J.-c. Wu, Sun Hanrong, and You Xinzhao (2004), Continuous deformation of the Tibetan Plateau from global positioning system data, Geology, 32, 809-812.


Brown, E. T., R. Bendick, D. L. Bourlès, V. Gaur, P. Molnar, G. M. Raisbeck, and F. Yiou, Early Holocene climate recorded in geomorphological features in Western Tibet, Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 199, 141-151, 2003.

Brown, E. T., R. Bendick, D. L. Bourlès, V. K. Gaur, P. Molnar, G. M. Raisbeck, and F. Yiou, Slip rates of the Karakorum fault, Ladakh, India, determined using cosmic ray exposure dating of debris flows and moraines, J. Geophys. Res., 107, 10.1029/2000JB000100, 2002.

Gilbert, H. J., A. F. Sheehan, K. G. Dueker, and P. Molnar, Receiver functions in the western United States, with implications for upper mantle structure and dynamics, J. Geophys. Res., 108(B5), 2229, doi:10.1029/2001JB001194, 2003.

Molnar, P., Nature, nurture and landscape, Nature, 426, 612-614, 2003.

Molnar, P., and M. A. Cane, El Niño's tropical climate and teleconnections as a blueprint for pre-Ice Age climates, Paleoceanography, 17 (2), 10.1029/2001PA000663, 2002.

Thompson, S. C., R. J. Weldon, C. M. Rubin, K. Abdrakhmatov, P. Molnar, and G. W. Berger, Late Quaternary slip rates across the central Tien Shan, Kyrgyzstan, central Asia, J. Geophys. Res., 107, 10.1029/2001JB000596, 2002.


Scherwath, M., A. Melhuish, T. Stern, and P. Molnar, Pn anisotropy and distributed upper mantle deformation associated with a continental transform fault, Geophys. Res. Lett., 29(8), 10.1029/2001GL014179, 2002.


Abdrakhmatov, K. E., R. Weldon, S. Thompson, D. Burbank, Ch. Rubin, M. Miller, and P. Molnar, Origin, direction, and rate of modern compression in the central Tien Shan, Kyrgyzstan, GEOLOGIYA I GEOFIZIKA (RUSSIAN GEOLOGY & GEOPHYSICS), 42, 1585-1609, 2001.

Bilham, R., V. K. Gaur, and P. Molnar, Himalayan seismic hazard, Science, 293, 1442-1444, 2001.

Cane, M. A., and P. Molnar, Closing of the Indonesian seaway as a precursor to east African aridification around 3–4 million years ago, Nature, 411, 157-162, 2001.

Hallet, B., and P. Molnar, Distorted drainage basins as markers of crustal strain east of the J. Geophys. Res., 106, 13,697-13,709, 2001.

Molnar, P., Climate change, flooding in arid environments, and erosion rates, Geology, 29, 1071-1074, 2001.

Molnar, P., From Plate Tectonics to Continental Tectonics: An Evolving Perspective of Important Research, from a Graduate Student to an Established Curmudgeon, in Plate tectonics: An Insider’s History of the Modern Theory of the Earth, ed. by N. Oreskes, Westview Press, Boulder, Colorado, 288-328, 2001.

Von Herzen, R., C. Ruppel, P. Molnar, M. Nettles, S. Nagihara, and G. Ekström, A Constraint on the shear stress at the Pacific-Australia plate boundary from heat flow and seismicity at the Kermadec forearc, J. Geophys. Res., 106, 6817-6833, 2001.

Zhang Peizhen, P. Molnar, and W. R. Downs, Increased sedimentation rates and grain sizes 2–4 Myr ago due to the influence of climate change on erosion rates, Nature, 410, 891-897, 2001.


Stern, T., P. Molnar, D. Okaya, and D. Eberhart-Philips, Teleseismic P wave delays and modes of shortening the mantle lithosphere beneath South Island, New Zealand, J. Geophys. Res., 105, 21,615-21,632, 2000.


Conrad, C. P., and P. Molnar, Convective instability of a boundary layer with temperature- and strain-rate-dependent viscosity in terms of 'available buoyancy,' Geophys. J. Int., 139, 51-68, 1999.

Forest, C. E., J. A. Wolfe, P. Molnar, and K. A. Emanuel, Paleoaltimetry incorporating atmospheric physics and botanical estimates of paleoclimate, Geol. Soc. Amer. Bull., 111, 497-511, 1999.

Molnar, P., and K. A. Emanuel, Temperature profiles in radiative-convective equilibrium above surfaces of different heights, J. Geophys. Res., 104, 24,265-24,271, 1999.

Molnar, P., H. J. Anderson, E. Audoine, D. Eberhart-Phillips, K. R. Gledhill, E. R. Klosko, T. V. McEvilly, D. Okaya, M. K. Savage, T. Stern, and F. T. Wu, Continuous Deformation Versus Faulting through the Continental Lithosphere of New Zealand, Science, 286, 516-519, 1999.


Brown, E. T., D. L. Bourlès, B. C. Burchfiel, Deng Qidong, Li Jun, P. Molnar, G. M. Raisbeck, and F. Yiou, Estimation of slip rates in the southern Tien Shan using cosmic ray exposure dates of abandoned alluvial fans, Geol. Soc. Amer. Bull., 110, 377-386, 1998.

Burov, E. B., and P. Molnar, Gravity anomalies over the Ferghana Valley (central Asia) and intracontinental deformation, J. Geophys. Res., 103, 18,137-18,152, 1998.

Molnar, P., G. A. Houseman, and C. P. Conrad, Rayleigh-Taylor instability and convective thinning of mechanically thickened lithosphere: effects of non-linear viscosity decreasing exponentially with depth and of horizontal shortening of the layer, Geophys. J. Int., 133, 568-584, 1998.

Wolfe, J. A., C. E. Forest, and P. Molnar, Paleobotanical evidence of Eocene and Oligocene paleoaltitudes in midlatitude western North America, Geol. Soc. Am. Bull., 110, 664-678, 1998.


Conrad, C. P., and P. Molnar, The growth of Rayleigh-Taylor-type instabilities in the lithosphere for various rheological and density structures, Geophys. J. Int., 129, 95-112, 1997.

England, P., and P. Molnar, Active deformation of Asia: from kinematics to dynamics, Science, 278, 647-650, 1997.

England, P., and P. Molnar, The field of crustal velocity in Asia calculated from Quaternary rates of slip on faults, Geophys. J. Int., 130, 551-582, 1997.

Houseman, G. A., and P. Molnar, Gravitational (Rayleigh-Taylor) instability of a layer with non-linear viscosity and convective thinning of continental lithosphere, Geophys. J. Int., 128, 125-150, 1997.

Wolfe, J. A., H. E. Schorn, C. E. Forest, and P. Molnar, Paleobotanical evidence for high altitudes in Nevada during the Miocene, Science, 276, 1672-1675, 1997.


Abdrakhmatov, K. Ye., S. A. Aldazhanov, B. H. Hager, M. W. Hamburger, T. A. Herring, K. B. Kalabaev, V. I. Makarov, P. Molnar, S. V. Panasyuk, M. T. Prilepin, R. E. Reilinger, I. S. Sadybakasov, B. J. Souter, Yu. A. Trapeznikov, V. Ye. Tsurkov, and A. V. Zubovich, Relatively recent construction of the Tien Shan inferred from GPS measurements of present-day crustal deformation rates, Nature, 384, 450-453, 1996.

Burtman, V. S., S. F. Skobelev, and P. Molnar, Late Cenozoic slip on the Talas-Ferghana fault, the Tien Shan, central Asia, Geol. Soc. Amer. Bull., 108, 1004-1021, 1996.

Bayarsayhan, Ch., A. Bayasgalan , B. Enhtuvshin, K. W. Hudnut, R. A. Kurushin, P. Molnar, and M. Ölziybat, 1957 Gobi-Altay, Mongolia earthquake as a prototype for southern California's most devastating earthquake, Geology, 24, 579-582, 1996.

Molnar, P. and J. M. Gipson, A bound on the rheology of continental lithosphere using very long baseline interferometry: The velocity of South China with respect to Eurasia, J. Geophys. Res., 101, 545-553, 1996.


Forest, C. E., P. Molnar, and K. A. Emanuel, Palaeoaltimetry from energy conservation principles, Nature, 374, 347-350, 1995.

Gillespie, A., and P. Molnar, Asynchronous maximum advances of mountain and continental glaciers, Rev. Geophys., 33, 311-364, 1995.

Martinod, J., and P. Molnar, Lithospheric folding in the Indian Ocean and the rheology of the oceanic plate, Bull. Soc. géol. France, 166, 813-821, 1995.

Molnar, P., and P. England, Temperatures in zones of steady-state underthrusting of young oceanic lithosphere, Earth Planet. Sci. Lett, 131, 57-70, 1995.

Woodward, R. L., and P. Molnar, Lateral heterogeneity in the upper mantle and SS-S traveltime intervals for SS rays reflected from the Tibetan Plateau and its surroundings, Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., 135, 139-148, 1995.


Molnar, P., and J. M. Gipson, Very long baseline interferometry and active rotations of crustal blocks in the Western Transverse Ranges, California, Geol. Soc. Amer. Bull., 106, 594-606, 1994.

Molnar, P., E. T. Brown, B. C. Burchfiel, Deng Qidong, Feng Xianyue, Li Jun, G. M. Raisbeck, Shi Jianbang, Wu Zhangming, F. Yiou, and You Huichuan, Quaternary climate change and the formation of river terraces across growing anticlines on the north flank of the Tien Shan, China, J. Geol., 102, 583-602, 1994.


England, P., and P. Molnar, Cause and effect among thrust and normal faulting, anatectic melting and exhumation in the Himalaya, in Himalayan Tectonics, Geol. Soc. (of London) Spec. Pub., 74, ed. by P. J. Treloar and M. P. Searle, 401-411, 1993.

England, P., and P. Molnar, The interpretation of inverted metamorphic isograds using simple physical calculations, Tectonics, 12, 145-157, 1993.

Molnar, P., P. England, and J. Martinod, Mantle dynamics, the uplift of the Tibetan Plateau, and the Indian monsoon, Reviews of Geophysics, 31, 357-396, 1993.


Chatelain, J. L., P. Molnar, R. Prévot, and B. L. Isacks, Detachment of part of the downgoing slab and uplift of the New Hebrides (Vanuatu) Islands, Geophys. Res. Lett., 19(14), 1507-1510, 1992.

England, P., P. Le Fort, P. Molnar, and A. Pêcher, Heat sources for Tertiary metamorphism and anatexis in the Annapurna-Manaslu region central Nepal, J. Geophys. Res., 97, 2107-2128, 1992.

Molnar, P., A review of seismicity, recent faulting, and active deformation of the Tibetan Plateau, J. Himalayan Geology, 3 (1), 43-78, 1992.

Molnar, P., Brace-Goetze strength profiles, the partitioning of strike-slip and thrust faulting at zones of oblique convergence, and the stress-heat flow paradox of the San Andreas fault, Fault Mechanics and Transport Properties in Rocks: A Festschrift in Honor of W. F. Brace, ed. by B. Evans and T.-f. Wong, Academic Press, London, 435-459, 1992.

Molnar, P., Crust in mantle overdrive, Nature, 358, 105-106, 1992.


Burchfiel, B. C., Zhang Peizhen, Wang Yipeng, Zhang Weiqi, Song Fangmin, Deng Qidong, P. Molnar, and L. Royden, Geology of the Haiyuan fault zone, Ningxia-Hui Autonomous Region, China, and its relation to the evolution of the northeastern margin of the Tibetan plateau, Tectonics, 10, 1091-1110, 1991.

England, P., and P. Molnar, Inferences of deviatoric stress in actively deforming belts from simple physical models, Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc. Lond. A, 337, 151-164, 1991.

Ménard, G., P. Molnar, and J. P. Platt, Budget of crustal shortening and subduction of continental crust in the Alps, Tectonics, 10, 231-244, 1991.

Pandey, M. R., S. W. Roecker, and P. Molnar, P-wave residuals at stations in Nepal: evidence for a high velocity region beneath the Karakorum, Geophys. Res. Lett., 18, 1909-1912, 1991.

Zhang Peizhen, B. C. Burchfiel, P. Molnar, Zhang Weiqi, Jiao Dechen, Deng Qidong, Wang Yipeng, L. Royden, and Song Fangmin, Amount and style of late Cenozoic deformation in the Liupan Shan area, Ningxia Autonomous Region, China, Tectonics, 10, 1111-1129, 1991.


Burov, E. V., M. G. Kogan, H. Lyon-Caen and P. Molnar, Gravity anomalies, the deep structure, and dynamic processes beneath the Tien Shan, Earth Planet. Sci. Lett, 96, 367-383, 1990.

Chen, W.-P., and P. Molnar, Source parameters of earthquakes and intraplate deformation beneath the Shillong Plateau and northern Indoburman Ranges, J. Geophys. Res., 95, 12,527-12,552, 1990.

England, P., and P. Molnar, Right-lateral shear and rotation as the explanation for strike-slip faulting in eastern Tibet, Nature, 344,140-142, 1990.

England, P., and P. Molnar, Surface uplift, uplift of rocks, and exhumation of rocks, Geology, 18, 1173-1177, 1990.

Jackson, J., and P. Molnar, Active faulting and block rotations in the western Transverse Ranges, California, J. Geophys. Res., 95, 22,073-22,087, 1990.

Molnar, P., A review of the seismicity and the rates of underthrusting and deformation at the Himalaya, J. Himalayan Geology 1(2), 131-154, 1990.

Molnar, P., and P. England, Late Cenozoic uplift of mountain ranges and global climate change: chicken or egg?, Nature, 346, 29-34, 1990.

Molnar, P., The rise of mountain ranges and the evolution of humans: a causal relation?, Irish J. Sci., 10, 199-207, 1990.

Molnar, P., S-wave residuals from earthquakes in the Tibetan region and lateral variations in the upper mantle, Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., 101, 68-77, 1990.

Molnar, P., and P. England, Temperatures, heat flux, and frictional stress near major thrust faults, J. Geophys. Res., 95, 4833-4856, 1990.

Zhang Peizhen, B. C. Burchfiel, P. Molnar, Zhang Weiqi, Jiao Decheng, Deng Qidong, Wang Yipeng, L. Royden, and Song Fangmin, Late Cenozoic tectonic evolution of the Ningxia-Hui Autonomous Region, China, Geol. Soc. Amer. Bull., 102, 1484-1498, 1990.


Lyon-Caen, H., and P. Molnar, Constraints on the deep structure and dynamic processes beneath the Alps and adjacent regions from an analysis of gravity anomalies, Geophys. J. Int., 99, 19-32, 1989.

Molnar, P., and H. Lyon-Caen, Fault plane solutions of earthquakes and active tectonics of the Tibetan Plateau and its margins, Geophys. J. Int., 99, 123-153, 1989.

Molnar, P., The geologic evolution of the Tibetan Plateau, Amer. Sci., 77, 350-360, 1989.


Kidd, W. S. F., and P. Molnar, Quaternary and active faulting observed on the 1985 Academia Sinica-Royal Society geotraverse of Tibet, Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc. Lond., Ser. A, 327, 337-363, 1988.

Ménard, G., and P. Molnar, Collapse of a Hercynian Tibetan Plateau into a late Palaeozoic Basin and Range Province in southern Europe, Nature, 334, 235-237, 1988.

Molnar, P., A review of geophysical constraints on the deep structure of the Tibetan Plateau, the Himalaya, and the Karakorum and their tectonic implications, Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc. Lond., Ser. A, 326, 33-88, 1988.

Molnar, P., and H. Lyon-Caen, Some simple physical aspects of the support, structure, and evolution of mountain belts, in Processes in Continental Lithospheric Deformation, Geol. Soc. Amer. Spec. Pap. 218, 179-207, 1988.

Molnar, P., Continental tectonics in the aftermath of plate tectonics, Nature, 335, 131-137, 1988.

Molnar, P., F. Pardo-Casas, and J. Stock, The Cenozoic and late Cretaceous evolution of the Indian Ocean basin: Uncertainties in the reconstructed positions of the Indian, African, and Antarctic plates, Basin Res., 1, 23-40, 1988.

Pandey, M. R., and P. Molnar, The distribution of intensity of the Bihar-Nepal earthquake of 15 January 1934 and bounds on the extent of the rupture zone, J. Geol. Soc. Nepal, 5, 22-44, 1988.

Rosa, J. W. C., and P. Molnar, Uncertainties in reconstructions of the Pacific, Farallon, Vancouver, and Kula plates and constraints on the rigidity of the Pacific and Farallon (and Vancouver) plates between 72 and 35 Ma, J. Geophys. Res., 93, 2997-3008, 1988.

Stock, J., and P. Molnar, Uncertainties and implications of the late Cretaceous and Tertiary position of North America relative to the Farallon, Kula, and Pacific plates, Tectonics, 7, 1339-1384, 1988.

Zhang Peizhen, P. Molnar, B. C. Burchfiel, L. Royden, Wang Yipeng, Deng Qidong, Song Fangmin, Zhang Weiqi, and Jiao Decheng, Bounds on the Holocene slip rate of the Haiyuan fault, north-central China, Quaternary Research, 30, 151-164, 1988.

Zhang Peizhen, P. Molnar, Zhang Weiqi, Deng Qidong, Wang Yipeng, B. C. Burchfiel, Song Fangmin, L. Royden, and Jiao Decheng, Bounds on the recurrence interval of major earthquakes along the Haiyuan fault in north-central China, Seismol. Res. Lett., 59, 81-89, 1988.


M.I.T. 1985 Field Geophysics Course and Shawn Biehler, A geophysical investigation of the northern Panamint Valley, Inyo County, California: Evidence for possible low angle normal faulting at shallow depth in the crust, J. Geophys. Res., 92, 10,427-10,441, 1987.

Molnar, P. and J. Stock, Relative motions of hotspots in the Pacific, Atlantic, and Indian Oceans since late Cretaceous time, Nature, 327, 587-591, 1987.

Molnar, P., Inversion of profiles of uplift rates for the geometry of dip-slip faults at depth, with examples from the Alps and the Himalaya, Annales Geophysicae, 5B, 663-670, 1987.

Molnar, P., B. C. Burchfiel, Zhao Ziyun, Liang K'uangyi, Wang Shuji, and Huang Minmin, The geologic evolution of northern Tibet: Results from an expedition to Ulugh Muztagh, Science, 235, 299-304, 1987.

Molnar, P., Ulugh Muztagh: The highest peak on the northern Tibetan Plateau, Alpine J., 92, 104-116, 1987.

Nelson, M. R., R. McCaffrey, and P. Molnar, Source parameters for 11 earthquakes in the Tien Shan, Central Asia, determined by P and SH waveform inversion, J. Geophys. Res., 92, 12,629-12,648, 1987.

Pardo-Casas, F. and P. Molnar, Relative motion of the Nazca (Farallon) and South American plates since Late Cretaceous time, Tectonics, 6, 233-248, 1987.

Stock, J., and P. Molnar, Revised history of early Tertiary plate motion in the south-west Pacific, Nature, 325, 495-499, 1987.

Zhang Weiqi, Jiao Decheng, Zhang Peizhen, P. Molnar, B. C. Burchfiel, Deng Qidong, and Wang Yipeng, Displacement along the Haiyuan fault associated with the great 1920 Haiyuan, China, earthquake, Bull. Seismo. Soc. Amer. 77, 117-181, 1987.


Chang Chengfa, Chen Nansheng, M. P. Coward, Deng Wanming, J. F. Dewey, A. Gansser, N. B. W. Harris, Jin Chengwei, W. S. F. Kidd, M. R. Leeder, Li Huan, Lin Jinlu, Liu Chengjie, Mei Houjun, P. Molnar, Pan Yun, Pan Yusheng, J. A. Pearce, R. M. Shackleton, A. B. Smith, Sun Yiyin, M. Ward, D. Watts, Xu Juntao, Xu Ronghua, Yin Jixiang, and Zhang Yuquan, Preliminary conclusions of the Royal Society and Academia Sinica 1985 geotraverse of Tibet, Nature, 323, 501-507, 1986.

Molnar, P., The geologic history and structure of the Himalaya, Amer. Sci., 74, 144-154, 1986.

Molnar, P., The Structure of mountain ranges, Sci. Amer., 254, 70-79, July, 1986.


Lyon-Caen, H. and P. Molnar, Gravity anomalies, flexure of the Indian plate, and the structure, support and evolution of the Himalaya and Ganga Basin, Tectonics, 4, 513-538, 1985.

Molnar, P. and J. M. Stock, A method for bounding uncertainties in combined plate reconstructions, J. Geophys. Res., 90, 12,537-12,544, 1985.


Baranowski, J., J. Armbruster, L. Seeber, and P. Molnar, Focal depths and fault plane solutions of earthquakes and active tectonics of the Himalaya, J. Geophys. Res., 89, 6918-6928, 1984.

Deng Qidong, Song Fangmin, Zhu Shilong, Li Mengluan, Wang Tielin, Zhang Weiqi, B. C. Burchfiel, P. Molnar, and Zhang Peizhen, Active faulting and tectonics of the Ningxia-Hui Autonomous Region, China, J. Geophys. Res., 89, 4427-4445, 1984.

Grange, F., D. Hatzfeld, P. Cunningham, P. Molnar, S. W. Roecker, G. Suárez, A. Rodriques, and L. Ocola, Microearthquake seismicity and fault plane solutions in southern Peru, J. Geophys. Res., 89, 6139-6152, 1984.

Le Dain, A. Y., P. Tapponnier, and P. Molnar, Active faulting and tectonics of Burma and surrounding regions, J. Geophys. Res., 89, 453-472, 1984.

Lyon-Caen, H. and P. Molnar, Gravity anomalies and the structure of western Tibet and the southern Tarim Basin, Geophys. Res. Lett., 11, 1251-1254, 1984.

Molnar, P. and W.-P. Chen, S-P wave travel time residuals and lateral inhomogeneity in the mantle beneath Tibet and the Himalaya, J. Geophys. Res., 89, 6911-6917, 1984.

Molnar, P. and Deng Qidong, Faulting associated with large earthquakes and the average rate of deformation in central and eastern Asia, J. Geophys. Res., 89, 6203-6227, 1984.

Molnar, P., Structure and tectonics of the Himalaya: Constraints and implications of geophysical data, Annual Reviews of Earth and Planetary Sciences, 12, 489-518, 1984.


Chen, W.-P. and P. Molnar, Focal depths of intracontinental and intraplate earthquakes and their implications for the thermal and mechanical properties of the lithosphere, J. Geophys. Res., 88, 4183-4214, 1983.

Lyon-Caen, H. and P. Molnar, Constraints on the structure of the Himalaya from an analysis of gravity anomalies and a flexural model of the lithosphere, J. Geophys. Res., 88, 8171-8191, 1983.

Molnar, P. and W.-P Chen, Focal depths and fault plane solutions of earthquakes under the Tibetan plateau, J. Geophys. Res., 88, 1180-1196, 1983.

Molnar, P., Average regional strain due to slip on numerous faults of different orientations, J. Geophys. Res., 88, 6430-6432, 1983.

Suárez, G., P. Molnar and B. C. Burchfiel, Seismicity, fault plane solutions, depth of faulting and active tectonics of the Andes of Peru, Ecuador and southern Colombia, J. Geophys. Res., 88, 10,403-10,428, 1983.

Stock, J. M. and P. Molnar, Some geometrical aspects of uncertainties in combined plate reconstructions, Geology, 11, 697-701, 1983.


Molnar, P. and W.-P. Chen, Seismicity and Mountain Building, in Mountain Building Processes, K. Hsu, ed., Academic Press, London, 41-57, 1982.


Chen, W.-P. and P. Molnar, Constraints on the seismic wave velocity structure beneath the Tibetan Plateau and their tectonic implications, J. Geophys. Res., 86, 5937-5962, 1981.

Chen, W.-P., J. L. Nábelek, T. J. Fitch, and P. Molnar, An intermediate depth earthquake beneath Tibet: Source characteristics of the event of September 14, 1976, J. Geophys. Res., 86, 2863-2876, 1981.

Dalmayrac, B. and P. Molnar, Parallel thrust and normal faulting in Peru and constraints on the state of stress, Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., 55, 473-481, 1981.

Houseman, G. A., D. P. McKenzie, and P. Molnar, Convective instability of a thickened boundary layer and its relevance for the thermal evolution of continental convergent belts, J. Geophys. Res., 86, 6115-6132, 1981.

Molnar, P. and P. Tapponnier, A possible dependence of tectonic strength on the age of the crust in Asia, Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., 52, 107-114, 1981.


Chatelain, J.-L., S. W. Roecker, D. Hatzfeld, and P. Molnar, Microearthquake seismicity and fault plane solutions in the Hindu-Kush region and their tectonic implications, J. Geophys. Res., 85, 1365-1387, 1980.

Suárez, G. and P. Molnar, Paleomagnetic data and pelagic sediment facies and the motion of the Pacific plate relative to the spin axis since the late Cretaceous, J. Geophys. Res., 85, 5257-5280, 1980.


Jackson, J., P. Molnar, H. Patton, T. J. Fitch, Seismotectonic aspects of the Markansu Valley, Tadjikstan, earthquake of August 11, 1974, J. Geophys. Res., 84, 6157-6167, 1979.

Jones, L. M., and P. Molnar, Some characteristics of foreshocks and their possible relationship to earthquake prediction and premonitory slip faults, J. Geophys. Res., 84, 3596-3608, 1979.

Molnar, P., Earthquake Recurrence intervals and plate tectonics, Bull. Seismo. Soc. Amer., 69, 115-133, 1979.

Molnar, P., D. Freedman, and J. S. F. Shih, Lengths of intermediate and deep seismic zones and temperatures in downgoing slabs of lithosphere, Geophys. J. Roy. Astr. Soc., 56, 41-54, 1979.

Molnar, P. and D. Gray, Subduction of continental lithosphere: Some constraints and uncertainties, Geology, 7, 58-62, 1979.

Molnar, P. and T. Atwater, Interarc spreading and cordilleran tectonics as alternates related to the age of subducted oceanic lithosphere, Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., 41, 330-340, 1979.

Tapponnier, P. and P. Molnar, Active faulting and Cenozoic tectonics of the Tien Shan, Mongolia and Baykal Regions, J. Geophys. Res., 84, 3425-3459, 1979.


Molnar, P. and P. Tapponnier, Active tectonics of Tibet, J. Geophys. Res., 83, 5361-5375, 1978.


Bunce, E. T., and P. Molnar, Seismic reflection profiling and basement topography in the Somali Basin: Possible fracture zones between Madagascar and Africa, J. Geophys. Res., 82, 5305-5311, 1977.

Chen, W.-P. and P. Molnar, Seismic moments of major earthquakes and the average rate of slip in Central Asia, J. Geophys. Res., 82, 2945-2969, 1977.

Khalturin, V. I., T. G. Rautian, and P. Molnar, The spectral content of Pamir-Hindu Kush intermediate depth earthquakes: Evidence for a high-Q zone in the upper mantle, J. Geophys. Res., 82, 2931-2943, 1977.

Molnar, P., and P. Tapponnier, The collision between India and Eurasia, Sci. Amer., 236(4), 30-41, 1977.

Molnar, P. and P. Tapponnier, Relation of the tectonics of eastern China to the India-Eurasia collision: Application of slip-line field theory to large-scale continental tectonics, Geology, 5, 212-216, 1977.

Molnar, P., W.-P. Chen, T. J. Fitch, P. Tapponnier, W. E. K. Warsi, and F. T. Wu, Structure and tectonics of the Himalaya: A brief summary of relevant geophysical observations, Collogue Internationaux du CNRS, No. 268, Himalaya: Sciences de la Terre, Editions du Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Paris, 269-294, 1977.

Ruzaikin, A. I., I. L. Nersesov, V. I. Khalturin, and P. Molnar, Propagation of Lg and lateral variations in crustal structure in Asia, J. Geophys. Res., 82, 307-316, 1977.

Tapponnier, P. and P. Molnar, Active faulting and tectonics of China, J. Geophys. Res., 82, 2905-2930, 1977.


Jones, L. and P. Molnar, Frequency of foreshocks, Nature, 262, 677-679, 1976.

Tapponnier, P. and P. Molnar, Slip-line field theory and large-scale continental tectonics, Nature, 264, 319-324, 1976.


Molnar, P. and J. Francheteau, The relative motion of "hot spots" in the Atlantic and Indian Oceans During the Cenozoic, Geophys. J. Roy. Astronom. Soc., 43, 763-774, 1975.

Molnar, P. and P. Tapponnier, Cenozoic tectonics of Asia: Effects of a continental collision, Science, 189, 419-426, 1975.

Shih, J. and P. Molnar, Analysis and implications of the sequence of ridge jumps that eliminated the Surveyor transform fault, J. Geophys. Res., 80, 4815-4822, 1975.


Minster, J. B., T. H. Jordan, P. Molnar, and E. Haines, Numerical modelling of instantaneous plate tectonics, Geophys. J. Roy. Astr. Soc., 36, 541-576, 1974.


Atwater, T. and P. Molnar, Relative motion of the Pacific and North American plates deduced from sea-floor spreading in the Atlantic, Indian, and South Pacific Oceans, Proc. Conf. on Tectonic Problems of the San Andreas Fault System, Geological Sciences XIII, School of Earth Sciences, Stanford Univ. Publications, 136-148, 1973.

Molnar, P. and T. Atwater, Relative motion of hot spots in the mantle, Nature, 246, 288-291, 1973.

Molnar, P., B. E. Tucker, and J. N. Brune, Corner frequencies of P and S waves and models of earthquake sources, Bull. Seism. Soc. Am., 63, 2091-2104, 1973.

Molnar, P., T. J. Fitch, and F. T. Wu, Fault plane solutions of shallow earthquakes and contemporary tectonics in Asia, Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., 19, 101-112, 1973.


Scholz, C., P. Molnar, and T. Johnson, Detailed studies of frictional sliding of granite and implications for the earthquake mechanism, J. Geophys. Res., 77, 6392-6406, 1972.


Isacks, B. and P. Molnar, Distribution of stresses in the descending lithosphere from a global survey of focal-mechanism solutions of mantle earthquakes, Rev. Geophys. Space Phys., 9, 103-174, 1971.


Isacks, B. and P. Molnar, Mantle earthquake mechanisms and the sinking of the lithosphere, Nature, 223, 1121-1124, 1969.

Molnar, P. and J. Oliver, Lateral variations of attenuation in the upper mantle and discontinuities in the lithosphere, J. Geophys. Res., 74, 2648-2682, 1969.

Molnar, P. and L. R. Sykes, Tectonics of the Caribbean and Middle America regions from focal mechanisms and seismicity, Geol. Soc. Am. Bull., 80, 1639-1684, 1969.

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