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A geologic process in which one edge of one crustal plate is forced below the edge of another.

[French, from Latin subductus, past participle of subdūcere, to draw away from below : sub-, sub- + dūcere, to lead; see deuk- in Indo-European roots.]

sub·duct′ v.
sub·duc′tal (-təl) adj.


1. (Physiology) the act of subducting, esp of turning the eye downwards
2. (Geological Science) geology the process of one tectonic plate sliding under another, resulting in tensions and faulting in the earth's crust, with earthquakes and volcanic eruptions


(səbˈdʌk ʃən)

the process by which collision of the earth's crustal plates results in one plate's being drawn down or overridden by another, localized along the juncture (subduc′tion zone`) of two plates.
[1965–70; < French subduction (1951); see subduct, -ion]


The sinking of one lithospheric plate’s leading edge below another lithospheric plate. This occurs below deep ocean trenches.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.subduction - a geological process in which one edge of a crustal plate is forced sideways and downward into the mantle below another plate
geologic process, geological process - (geology) a natural process whereby geological features are modified
References in periodicals archive ?
341,444 for a project titled, Sulfur Isotopes in Subduction Systems and the Global Sulfur Cycle, which seeks to address the knowledge gap in the sulfur cycle by directly examining sulfur-bearing minerals in rocks from ancient subducted plates and deep arc volcanic systems.
The research suggests that formation of adakite has various reasons including partial melting of subducted oceanic crust, crystallization differentiation of mantle-derived basaltic magma, migmatization of magma, partial melting of delaminated lower crust and partial melting of thickened lower crust.
For example, Mauna Loa contains higher proportions of an igneous rock called pyroxenite, which comes from subducted ocean crust that typically melts at deeper levels than the model suggests.
The undersea megathrust earthquake was caused when the Indian Plate was subducted by the Burma Plate and triggered a series of devastating tsunamis along the coasts of most landmasses bordering the Indian Ocean, killing 230,000 people in 14 countries, and inundating coastal communities with waves up to 30 metres (100 ft) high It was one of the deadliest natural disasters in recorded history.
The analysis of the state of stress on convergent margins has traditionally focused on the forces exerted by and on the subducted slab through ridge push occurring at the spreading centers and the slab pull, caused by the gravitational attraction of the dense slab (vanSummeren et al.
Some models suggest the presence of two subduction zones; with the Indian plate being subducted beneath the Hindu Kush region and the Eurasian plate being subducted beneath the Pamir region.
The strongest activity is centered at an intermediate depth of 60-200 km due to an old subducted tectonic plate which can currently be found in an almost vertical position.
The Zagros Thrust Zone is located along the suture where the north-easterly directed Arabian Plate is subducted below the Iranian (Asian) Plate.
During intra-oceanic subduction various parts of the subducted plate were accreted to the base of the overriding slab and subjected to a temperature between about 9001000 C forming mylonitic peridotite and then continued downwards to form the sub-ophiolitic metamorphic rocks.
It all started with an undersea earthquake in the Indian Ocean when the Indio-Australian Plate subducted below the Eurasian Plate.
At this time, while the subducted oceanic crust was getting younger, the plate was progressively rising up, passing to a flat-slab subduction (Ramos and Folguera, 2009).
Based on the models, the researchers found that parts of the slab that is being subducted sweep around behind the collision, pushing continental material into the mountain belt.