Earthquake Glossary - lithosphere

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  • lithosphere

    The lithosphere is the outer solid part of the earth, including the crust and uppermost mantle. The lithosphere is about 100 km thick, although its thickness is age dependent (older lithosphere is thicker).The lithosphere below the crust is brittle enough at some locations to produce earthquakes by faulting, such as within a subducted oceanic plate.


    lithosphere

    (Image courtesy of Massey University)