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Sample records for continental subduction-zone metamorphism

  1. UHP impure marbles from the Dabie Mountains: Metamorphic evolution and carbon cycling in continental subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Penglei; Wu, Yao; Chen, Yi; Zhang, Junfeng; Jin, Zhenmin

    2015-01-01

    Impure marbles from ultra-high pressure (UHP) metamorphic belts bear significant information on the metamorphic evolution and carbon cycling during continental subduction and exhumation. In this study, detailed petrological data are presented and a P-T-X(CO2) path is constructed for the impure marbles from the Dabie UHP terrane. Coesite relicts are discovered as inclusions within dolomite from the selected samples, which have a peak assemblage of dolomite, aragonite, garnet, omphacite, phengite, coesite, allanite and rutile. Estimated with the compositions of peak minerals, a P-T condition of 4.05-4.45 GPa at 740-820 °C is obtained by conventional geothermobarometry. The modeled fluid compositions have a low X(CO2) (0.01-0.02) at the peak conditions, while the X(CO2) firstly increased during isothermal exhumation and then decreased at later retrogression. The discovery of coesite within dolomite underscores the role of the "pressure vessel" models and highlights the significance of fluid unavailability in preserving coesite in UHP rocks. Neither petrological evidence nor independent peak P-T estimations support the breakdown of dolomite in the studied marbles, which contests recent suggestions. Analysis on the phase relations in the CaO-MgO-SiO2-H2O-CO2 system shows that the bulk rock compositions have a large control on the stable UHP carbonate associations in carbonate-bearing rocks. The low X(CO2) in the peak fluids indicates a weak decarbonation of the impure marbles under sub-arcs. In the last, a large fraction of CO2 is shown to be sequestrated during regional retrogression of clinopyroxene marbles, which has a profound influence and must be considered for the global carbon cycling.

  2. Metamorphic Perspectives of Subduction Zone Volatiles Cycling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bebout, G. E.

    2008-12-01

    Field study of HP/UHP metamorphic rocks provides "ground-truthing" for experimental and theoretical petrologic studies estimating extents of deep volatiles subduction, and provides information regarding devolatilization and deep subduction-zone fluid flow that can be used to reconcile estimates of subduction inputs and arc volcanic outputs for volatiles such as H2O, N, and C. Considerable attention has been paid to H2O subduction in various bulk compositions, and, based on calculated phase assemblages, it is thought that a large fraction of the initially structurally bound H2O is subducted to, and beyond, subarc regions in most modern subduction zones (Hacker, 2008, G-cubed). Field studies of HP/UHP mafic and sedimentary rocks demonstrate the impressive retention of volatiles (and fluid-mobile elements) to depths approaching those beneath arcs. At the slab-mantle interface, high-variance lithologies containing hydrous phases such as mica, amphibole, talc, and chlorite could further stabilize H2O to great depth. Trench hydration in sub-crustal parts of oceanic lithosphere could profoundly increase subduction inputs of particularly H2O, and massive flux of H2O-rich fluids from these regions into the slab-mantle interface could lead to extensive metasomatism. Consideration of sedimentary N concentrations and ?15N at ODP Site 1039 (Li and Bebout, 2005, JGR), together with estimates of the N concentration of subducting altered oceanic crust (AOC), indicates that ~42% of the N subducting beneath Nicaragua is returned in the corresponding volcanic arc (Elkins et al., 2006, GCA). Study of N in HP/UHP sedimentary and basaltic rocks indicates that much of the N initially subducted in these lithologies would be retained to depths approaching 100 km and thus available for addition to arcs. The more altered upper part of subducting oceanic crust most likely to contribute to arcs has sediment-like ?15NAir (0 to +10 per mil; Li et al., 2007, GCA), and study of HP/UHP eclogites indicates retention of seafloor N signatures and, in some cases, enrichments in sedimentary N due to forearc metamorphic fluid-rock interactions (Halama et al., this session). A global estimate of C cycling, using seafloor inputs (carbonate and organic matter) and estimates of volcanic CO2 outputs, indicates ~40% return (with large uncertainty) of the subducting C in volcanic gases. This imbalance appears plausible, given the evidence for deep carbonate subduction, in UHP marbles, and the preservation of graphite in UHP metasediments, together seemingly indicating that large fractions of subducting C survive forearc-to-subarc metamorphism. Estimates of return efficiency in the Central America arc, based on data for volcanic gases, are lower and variable along strike (12-29%), quite reasonably explained by de Leeuw et al. (2007, EPSL) as resulting from incomplete decarbonation of subducting sediment and AOC, fluid flow patterns expected given sediment section thickness, and varying degrees of forearc underplating. The attempts to mass-balance C and N across individual arc-trench systems demonstrate valuable integration of information from geophysical, field, petrologic, and geochemical observations. Studies of subduction-zone metamorphic suites can yield constraints on the evolution of deeply subducting rocks and the physicochemical characteristics of fluids released in forearcs and contributing to return flux in arc volcanic gases.

  3. Earthquakes, fluid pressures and rapid subduction zone metamorphism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Viete, D. R.

    2013-12-01

    High-pressure/low-temperature (HP/LT) metamorphism is commonly incomplete, meaning that large tracts of rock can remain metastable at blueschist- and eclogite-facies conditions for timescales up to millions of years [1]. When HP/LT metamorphism does take place, it can occur over extremely short durations (<<1 Myr) [1-2]. HP/LT metamorphism must be associated with processes that allow large volumes of rock to remain unaffected over long periods of time, but then suddenly undergo localized metamorphism. Existing models for HP/LT metamorphism have focussed on the role of fluids in providing heat for metamorphism [2] or catalyzing metamorphic reactions [1]. Earthquakes in subduction zone settings can occur to depths of 100s of km. Metamorphic dehydration and the associated development of elevated pore pressures in HP/LT metamorphic rocks has been identified as a cause of earthquake activity at such great depths [3-4]. The process of fracturing/faulting significantly increases rock permeability, causing channelized fluid flow and dissipation of pore pressures [3-4]. Thus, deep subduction zone earthquakes are thought to reflect an evolution in fluid pressure, involving: (1) an initial increase in pore pressure by heating-related dehydration of subduction zone rocks, and (2) rapid relief of pore pressures by faulting and channelized flow. Models for earthquakes at depth in subduction zones have focussed on the in situ effects of dehydration and then sudden escape of fluids from the rock mass following fracturing [3-4]. On the other hand, existing models for rapid and incomplete metamorphism in subduction zones have focussed only on the effects of heating and/or hydration with the arrival of external fluids [1-2]. Significant changes in pressure over very short timescales should result in rapid mineral growth and/or disequilibrium texture development in response to overstepping of mineral reaction boundaries. The repeated process of dehydration-pore pressure development-earthquake-pore pressure relief could conceivably produce a record of episodic HP/LT metamorphism driven by rapid pressure pulses. A new hypothesis is presented for the origins of HP/LT metamorphism: that HP/LT metamorphism is driven by effective pressure pulses caused by localized, earthquake-related modifications to fluid pressures in the subducted slab. In other words, HP/LT metamorphism marks abrupt changes in stress state within the subducted slab, driven by earthquake rupture and fluid flow, and involving a rapid return toward lithostatic pressure from effective pressures well below lithostatic. References: 1. Bjørnerud, MG, Austrheim, H & Lund, MG, 2002. Processes leading to eclogitization (densification) of subducted and tectonically buried crust. Journal of Geophysical Research 107, 2252. 2. Camacho, A, Lee, JKW, Hensen, BJ & Braun, J, 2005. Short-lived orogenic cycles and the eclogitization of cold crust by spasmodic hot fluids. Nature 435, 1191-1196. 3. Green, HW & Houston, H, 1995. The mechanics of deep earthquakes. Annual Reviews of Earth and Planetary Sciences 23, 169-213. 4. Hacker, BR, Peacock, SM, Abers, GA & Holloway, SD, 2003. Subduction factory 2. Are intermediate-depth earthquakes in subducting slabs linked to metamorphic dehydration reactions?. Journal of Geophysical Research 108, 2030.

  4. Dating Subduction Zone Metamorphism with Garnet and Lawsonite Geochronology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mulcahy, S. R.; Vervoort, J. D.

    2013-12-01

    Lawsonite [CaAl2Si2O7(OH)2 H2O] is a critical index mineral for high- to ultrahigh-pressure metamorphism associated with subduction. Lawsonite is an important carrier of water into the mantle, a likely contributor to subduction zone seismicity, and a bearer of trace elements that link metamorphism to arc magmatism. Due to its limited pressure-temperature stability, lawsonite can serve as a powerful petrogenetic indicator of specific metamorphic events. Lu-Hf dating of lawsonite, therefore provides a potentially powerful new tool for constraining subduction zone processes in a pressure-temperature window where few successful geochronometers exist. Broad application of lawsonite Lu-Hf geochronology requires constraining the role of pressure-temperature path, lawsonite forming reactions, and the Lu and Hf systematics within lawsonite and other blueschist facies minerals. We are working to address the role of the metamorphic path on the applicability of lawsonite Lu-Hf geochronology within the Franciscan Complex of California. The Franciscan Complex preserves mafic high-grade exotic blocks in melange that underwent a counterclockwise pressure-temperature path wherein garnet, which strongly partitions heavy rare-earth elements, formed prior to lawsonite. Coherent mafic rocks within the Franciscan Complex, however, underwent a clockwise pressure-temperature path and lawsonite growth occurred prior to garnet. We sampled exotic blocks of garnet-hornblendite, garnet-epidote amphibolite, garnet-epidote blueschist, and lawsonite blueschist from the Berkeley Hills and Tiburon Peninsula of California. We collected four samples from coherent lawsonite blueschist across the lawsonite-pumpellyite-epidote isograds in Ward Creek, near Cazadero California. High-grade blocks give ages similar to existing Franciscan geochronology: multi-stage garnet in hornblendite gives the following ages: 171×1.3 Ma (MSWD 2.8) for the core and 159.4×0.9 Ma (MSWD 2.0) for the corresponding rim; 166×0.9 Ma (MSWD 1.0) for garnet-epidote amphibolite; and 156.2×1.0 Ma (MSWD 0.35) for garnet-epidote blueschist. Samples from retrograde exotic blocks contain lawsonite formed by garnet breakdown reactions and exhibit elevated Lu concentrations (?0.5-1.3 ppm) and 176Lu/177 Hf ratios (?2.2). Two samples we dated from the Berkeley Hills and Tiburon, respectively, gave lawsonite-whole rock ages of 129.2×1.2 Ma (MSWD 1.0) and 144.9×1.2 Ma (MSWD 0.64) . In the younger sample, garnet replaced by lawsonite is dated at 149.2×1.6 Ma. Lawsonite from Ward Creek that formed by prograde reactions involving plagioclase minerals, in contrast, have low Lu concentrations (?0.3 ppm) and low 176Lu/177 Hf ratios (?0.45). A garnet age of 151.6×1.3 Ma (MSWD 12.7) was obtained from garnet-epidote blueschist. While the ages from retrograde lawsonite within exotic blocks are similar to existing ages from the Franciscan Complex, no meaningful lawsonite ages were obtained from prograde coherent blocks of Ward Creek. The results suggest that lawsonite formed from the breakdown of garnet along a retrograde path provides meaningful Lu-Hf ages, while the very-low temperature lawsonite formed along a prograde path is not well suited for geochronology. This may be due to factors such as non-equilibrium at low metamorphic grades, low bulk rock Lu content, and the prevalence of micro-zircon within these samples.

  5. Does subduction zone magmatism produce average continental crust

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ellam, R. M.; Hawkesworth, C. J.

    1988-01-01

    The question of whether present day subduction zone magmatism produces material of average continental crust composition, which perhaps most would agree is andesitic, is addressed. It was argued that modern andesitic to dacitic rocks in Andean-type settings are produced by plagioclase fractionation of mantle derived basalts, leaving a complementary residue with low Rb/Sr and a positive Eu anomaly. This residue must be removed, for example by delamination, if the average crust produced in these settings is andesitic. The author argued against this, pointing out the absence of evidence for such a signature in the mantle. Either the average crust is not andesitic, a conclusion the author was not entirely comfortable with, or other crust forming processes must be sought. One possibility is that during the Archean, direct slab melting of basaltic or eclogitic oceanic crust produced felsic melts, which together with about 65 percent mafic material, yielded an average crust of andesitic composition.

  6. Seismic investigation of the transition from continental to oceanic subduction along the western Hellenic Subduction Zone

    E-print Network

    Pearce, Frederick Douglas

    The western Hellenic subduction zone (WHSZ) exhibits well-documented along-strike variations in lithosphere density (i.e., oceanic versus continental), subduction rates, and overriding plate extension. Differences in slab ...

  7. Anatexis of garnet amphibolites from a subduction zone metamorphic terrane

    SciTech Connect

    Sorensen, S.S.; Barton, M.D.; Ernst, W.G.

    1985-01-01

    Concomitant rehydration, metasomatism and amphibolitization of eclogite blocks from a mafic/ultramafic complex of the Catalina Schist terrane, southern California, at estimated metamorphic P approx. 8-12 kb, T approx. 600/sup 0/-700/sup 0/C was apparently accompanied by partial melting of some blocks. Mobilizates of An approx./sub 10-20/ plagioclase (PL) +/- zoisite (ZO) + quartz (QZ) + celadonitic (Si approx. 3.3 p.f.u.) white mica (WM) +/- tourmaline range from stringers and dikelets (approx. 1 cm-0.5 m) in migmatitic amphibolite blocks to dikes approx. 30 m x 3 m which intrude the surrounding, locally enstatite + chlorite +/- talc +/- aluminous actinolite +/- anthophyllite-bearing ultramafic matrix. The uniform phase proportions and the coarse-grained (PL to approx. 20 cm) pegmatitic, graphic, and myrmekitic textures displayed by the dikes and dikelets suggest that they crystallized from silicate melts. WM and ZO appear to be magmatic phases. Fe-rich GT is migmatitic portions of blocks exhibits higher Mg/(Mg + Ca) p.f.u. than GT in restitic portions of blocks; rims are richer in Mg than cores. Field relations, microprobe mineral chemistry, and bulk compositions suggest the pegmatites are low fractions of amphibolite-derived partial melt. Abundant fluid inclusions occur in GT, QZ, PL and clinopyroxene. T/sub h/ for primary H/sub 2/O-rich, low salinity L + V inclusions in GT and QZ from a migmatite range from 136-169/sup 0/C; estimates of T limits for entrapment are 530-640/sup 0/C at 8 kb, 650-780/sup 0/C at 10 kb. H/sub 2/O-rich fluids evidently enabled metasomatism, amphibolitization, and anatexis of (originally) eclogitic rocks at the P-T conditions reflected by the metamorphic mineral assemblages.

  8. Elemental responses to subduction-zone metamorphism: Constraints from the North Qilian Mountain, NW China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xiao, Yuanyuan; Niu, Yaoling; Song, Shuguang; Davidson, Jon; Liu, Xiaoming

    2013-02-01

    Subduction zone metamorphism (SZM) and behaviors of chemical elements in response to this process are important for both arc magmatism and mantle compositional heterogeneity. In this paper, we report the results of our petrographic and geochemical studies on blueschist and eclogite facies rocks of sedimentary and basaltic protoliths from two metamorphic sub-belts with different metamorphic histories in the North Qilian Mountain, Northwest China. The protolith of low-grade blueschists is basaltic in composition and is most likely produced in a back-arc setting, while the protoliths of high-grade blueschists/eclogites geochemically resemble the present-day normal and enriched mid-oceanic ridge basalts plus some volcanic arc rocks. The meta-sedimentary rocks, including meta-graywacke, meta-pelite, meta-chert and marble, show geochemical similarity to global oceanic (subducted) sediments. Assuming that high field strength elements (HFSEs) are relatively immobile, the correlated variations of rare earth elements (REEs) and Th with HFSEs suggest that all these elements are probably also immobile, whereas Pb and Sr are mobile in rocks of both basaltic and sedimentary protoliths during SZM. Ba, Cs and Rb are immobile in rocks of sedimentary protoliths and mobile in rocks of basaltic protolith. The apparent mobility of U in rocks of basaltic protolith may be inherited from seafloor alterations rather than caused by SZM. On the basis of in situ mineral compositional analysis (both major and trace elements), the most significant trace element storage minerals in these subduction-zone metamorphic rocks are: lawsonite, pumpellyite, apatite, garnet and epidote group minerals for REEs, white micas (both phengite and paragonite) for large ion lithophile elements, rutile and titanite for HFSEs. The presence and stability of these minerals exert the primary controls on the geochemical behaviors of most of these elements during SZM. The immobility of REEs, Th and U owing to their redistribution into newly formed minerals suggests that subduction-zone dehydration metamorphism will not contribute to the enrichment of these elements in arc magmatism. These observations require the formation and contribution of supercritical fluids or hydrous melts (these can effectively transport the aforementioned incompatible elements) from greater depths to arc magmatism. In addition, the overall sub-chondritic Nb/Ta ratio retained in rutile-bearing eclogites indicates that the subducting/subducted residual ocean crust passing through SZM cannot be responsible for the missing Nb (relative to Ta) in the bulk silicate earth.

  9. Crustal Recylcing at Ocean Margin and Continental Subduction Zones and the Net Accumulation of Continental Crust

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scholl, D. W.; von Huene, R.

    2007-12-01

    CRUSTAL RECYCLING PROCESSES AND VOLUMES: At convergent ocean margins large volumes of rock and sediment are missing from the global length of submerged forearcs. Material is removed by the kindred tectonic process of sediment subduction and subduction erosion, both of which insert sediment and eroded crustal debris into the subduction channel separating the upper and lower plates. The channel transports entrained debris toward the mantle where it is ultimately recycled. Large tracks of exposed high P/T rocks are exposed remnants of subduction channels. Over the past 100-200 my, the average solid-rock volume of recycled crust is estimated to have averaged globally 2.5-3.0 km3/yr--or 2.5 to 3 Armstrong Units (AU). Exposed tracts of UHP rocks at collisional orogens document that crustal material is subducted deep into the mantle at continental subduction zones. Based on missing terranes of extended lower plate, a volume of recycled continental crust detached by slab failure can be estimated at ~5000 km3 for each km of the early Proterozoic Wopmay orogen of the NW Canadian Shield (Hildrenbrand and Bowring, 1999, Geology, v. 27, p.11-14). Averaged over an orogenic episode of ~40 my, the corresponding rate is ~125 km3/my/km of margin. Using the Wopmay- rate as a guide, and assuming that similar to the Cenozoic, collisional orogenic margins averaged 10-12,000 km in global length, then since the early Proterozoic crustal recycling at collisional subduction zones has averaged close to 1.5 AU (i.e., 1.5 km3/yr). Crustal losses from the upper plate have also been recognized for sectors of the Variscan orogen (Oncken, 1998, Geology, v. 26, p. 1975-1078). The missing crust is roughly 40 km3/my for each km of upper plate, thus globally tallying an additional ~0.5 AU. CRUSTAL GROWTH: New information implies that at intra-oceanic subduction zones the long-term (~50 my), global rate of arc magmatic productivity has averaged close to 5 AU, a much higher rate than formerly estimated (~1 AU). It is not clear that this rate, which is based on the growth of the Aleutian and Izu-Bonin-Mariana arc massifs corrected for subduction erosion losses, can be applied to continental or Andean arcs. But allowing that it can, then the combined global rate of additions of juvenile igneous rock to build continents ( 5 AU) is similar to that recycled at ocean margin (2-3 AU) and continental subduction zones (2 AU). Additional losses can arise from delamination of magmatically or tectonically thickened convergent-margin crust. The implication of these estimates and linked assumptions support the Armstrong posit that since the early Archean the yang of magmatic additions to the continents has been matched by the yin of recycling losses.

  10. Growth of early continental crust controlled by melting of amphibolite in subduction zones.

    PubMed

    Foley, Stephen; Tiepolo, Massimo; Vannucci, Riccardo

    2002-06-20

    It is thought that the first continental crust formed by melting of either eclogite or amphibolite, either at subduction zones or on the underside of thick oceanic crust. However, the observed compositions of early crustal rocks and experimental studies have been unable to distinguish between these possibilities. Here we show a clear contrast in trace-element ratios of melts derived from amphibolites and those from eclogites. Partial melting of low-magnesium amphibolite can explain the low niobium/tantalum and high zirconium/samarium ratios in melts, as required for the early continental crust, whereas the melting of eclogite cannot. This indicates that the earliest continental crust formed by melting of amphibolites in subduction-zone environments and not by the melting of eclogite or magnesium-rich amphibolites in the lower part of thick oceanic crust. Moreover, the low niobium/tantalum ratio seen in subduction-zone igneous rocks of all ages is evidence that the melting of rutile-eclogite has never been a volumetrically important process. PMID:12075348

  11. A continuum model of continental deformation above subduction zones - Application to the Andes and the Aegean

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wdowinski, Shimon; O'Connell, Richard J.; England, Philip

    1989-01-01

    A continuum model of continental deformation above subduction zones was developed that combines the viscous sheet and the corner flow models; the continental lithosphere is described by a two-dimensional sheet model that considers basal drag resulting from the viscous asthenosphere flow underneath, and a corner flow model with a deforming overlying plate and a rigid subducting plate is used to calculate the shear traction that acts on the base of the lithosphere above a subduction zone. The continuum model is applied to the Andes and the Aegean deformations, which represent, respectively, compressional and extensional tectonic environments above subduction zones. The models predict that, in a compressional environment, a broad region of uplifted topography will tend to develop above a more steeply dippping slab, rather than above a shallower slab, in agreement with observations in the various segments of the central Andes. For an extensional environment, the model predicts that a zone of compression can develop near the trench, and that extensional strain rate can increase with distance from the trench, as is observed in the Aegean.

  12. U-Pb SHRIMP geochronology of zircon in garnet peridotite from the Sulu UHP terrane, China: Implications for mantle metasomatism and subduction-zone UHP metamorphism

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zhang, R.Y.; Yang, J.S.; Wooden, J.L.; Liou, J.G.; Li, T.F.

    2005-01-01

    We studied the Zhimafang ultrahigh-pressure metamorphic (UHP) peridotite from pre-pilot drill hole PP-1 of Chinese Continental Scientific Drilling project in the Sulu UHP terrane, eastern China. The peridotite occurs as lens within quartofeldspathic gneiss, and has an assemblage of Ol + Opx + Cpx + Phl + Ti-clinohumite (Ti-Chu) + Grt (or chromite) ?? magnesite (Mgs). Zircons were separated from cores at depths of 152 m (C24, garnet lhezolite), 160 m (C27, strongly retrograded phlogopite-rich peridotite) and 225 m (C50, banded peridotite), and were dated by SHRIMP mass spectrometer. Isometric zircons without inherited cores contain inclusions of olivine (Fo91-92), enstatite (En91-92), Ti-clinohumite, diopside, phlogopite and apatite. The enstatite inclusions have low Al2O3 contents of only 0.04-0.13 wt.%, indicating a UHP metamorphic origin. The weighted mean 206Pb/238U zircon age for garnet lherzolite (C24) is 221 ?? 3 Ma, and a discordia lower intercept age for peridotite (C50) is 220 ?? 2 Ma. These ages are within error and represent the time of subduction-zone UHP metamorphism. A younger lower intercept age of 212 ?? 3 Ma for a foliated wehrlite (C27) was probably caused by Pb loss during retrograde metamorphism. The source of zirconium may be partially attributed to melt/fluid metasomatism within the mantle wedge. Geochronological and geochemical data confirm that the mantle-derived Zhimafang garnet peridotites (probably the most representative type of Sulu garnet peridotites) were tectonically inserted into a subducting crustal slab and subjected to in situ Triassic subduction-zone UHP metamorphism. ?? 2005 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Monazite solubility in hydrous silicic melts at high pressure conditions relevant to subduction zone metamorphism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Skora, Susanne; Blundy, Jon

    2012-03-01

    Critical to any application of accessory phase stability to subduction zone thermal structure and processes is knowledge of the thermodynamic stability of these minerals in different types of subducted rock, their solubility in the presence of fluids, and the extent to which they fractionate trace element ratios of interest. This study focuses on monazite, which is the principal carrier of light rare earth elements (LREE) and thorium (Th) in CaO-poor subducted sediments. Relatively little is known about the mechanism of monazite dissolution in high-pressure hydrous melts (or supercritical fluids), yet monazite and allanite (the principal carrier of LREE and Th in oceanic basalts and some CaO-rich sediments) solubility has been used recently to quantify subducted slab-top temperatures (Plank, T., Cooper, L.B., Manning, C.E., 2009. Emerging geothermometers for estimating slab surface temperatures. Nature Geosci. 2, 611-615). We have studied monazite solubility at subduction zone conditions (3 GPa, T ? 800 °C) in hydrous sediment-melting experiments. Experimental results highlight the important role that phosphorous exerts on monazite solubility in hydrous silicic melts at high pressure. Thermodynamically this corresponds to a case where monazite dissolves predominantly as its dissociated constituent ions (LREE3 + and PO43 -). This is in contrast to monazite solubility in granitic melts at low pressures (0.2 GPa) where it appears to dissolve predominantly as associate LREEPO4 species, such that its solubility is essentially independent of dissolved phosphorous. Our results have implications for monazite-based thermometry, as the error introduced by not taking phosphorous into account in high-pressure fluids can amount to > 100 °C.

  14. Polyphase Formation and Exhumation of HP-UHP Rocks in Continental Subduction Zone: Numerical Modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Z.; Gerya, T.

    2008-12-01

    High- to ultrahigh-pressure (HP-UHP) metamorphic rocks commonly form and exhume during the early continental collision, with the protoliths mainly derived from subducted upper and middle continental crust. While the geodynamic significance of HP-UHP complexes is widely recognized and their appearance in the Neoproterozoic is considered as a "hallmark" for establishing modern plate tectonic styles, many questions related to their origin still remain unresolved. Of particular importance is the poly-metamorphic origin of many HP-UHP terranes composed of tectonic units having strongly variable ages, peak metamorphic conditions and P-T paths. In order to address this issue we conducted 2D high-resolution thermomechanical numerical modeling of the continental subduction associated with formation and exhumation of the HP-UHP rocks, with testing different geometrical configurations, rheological properties and varied width of subducting continental margins, convergence velocity, sedimentation and erosion rates. Most of our experiments confirm poly-phase origin of HP-UHP terranes and predict existence of several consequent episodes of (U)HP rocks exhumation related to the inherently cyclic origin of continental crust subduction-detachment-exhumation process. Periodicity of formation of rheologically weak zones (thrusting faults) controlling HP-UHP rocks exhumation processes depends on the competing effects of downward directed subduction drag and upward directed crustal buoyancy forces. The buoyancy forces and related deviatoric stresses accumulate in the subduction channel due to subduction of low-density crustal rocks and are then reset back during rapid exhumation episodes. Numerical modeling suggest that UHP rocks may remain in the sub-lithospheric channel for several million years being heated to 800-900°C by the surrounding hot mantle. At the later stage upward extrusion of such hot partially molten rocks may exhume high-temperature (HT) UHP complexes toward the surface. Therefore, sub-lithospheric channel formation and extrusion processes may provide plausible explanation for occurrence of UHP-HT rocks in nature.

  15. Modeling the effects of geological heterogeneity and metamorphic dehydration on slow slip and shallow deformation in subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Skarbek, Robert M.

    Slow slip and tectonic tremor in subduction zones take place at depths (˜20 - 50 km) where there is abundant evidence for distributed shear over broad zones (˜10 - 103 m) composed of rocks with marked differences in mechanical properties and for near lithostatic pore pressures along the plate interface where the main source of fluids must be attributed to chemical dehydration reactions. In Chapter II, I model quasi-dynamic rupture along faults composed of material mixtures characterized by different rate-and-state-dependent frictional properties to determine the parameter regime capable of producing slow slip in an idealized subduction zone setting. Keeping other parameters fixed, the relative proportions of velocity-weakening (VW) and velocity-strengthening (VS) materials control the sliding character (stable, slow, or dynamic) along the fault. The stability boundary between slow and dynamic is accurately described by linear analysis of a double spring-slider system with VW and VS blocks. In Chapter III, I model viscoelastic compaction of material subducting through the slow slip and tremor zone in the presence of pressure and temperature-dependent dehydration reactions. A dehydration fluid source is included using 1) a generalized basalt dehydration reaction in subducting oceanic crust or 2) a general nonlinear kinetic reaction rate law parameterized for an antigorite dehydration reaction. Pore pressures in excess of lithostatic values are a robust feature of simulations that employ parameters consistent with the geometry of the Cascadia subduction margin. Simulations that include viscous deformation uniformly generate traveling porosity waves that transport increased fluid pressures within the slow slip region. Slow slip and tremor also occur in shallow (< 10 km depth) accretionary prism sections of subduction zones. In Chapter IV, I examine how geologic heterogeneities affect the mechanics of accretionary prisms in subduction zones by showing how spatial variations in pore pressure, porosity, and internal friction coefficient affect predictions of basal shear stress, taper angle, and internal slip surface geometry. My results suggest that assuming average porosity throughout the prism may be a good approximation in many cases, but assuming an average value for the pore pressure can cause significant errors. This dissertation includes previously published and unpublished coauthored material.

  16. Fluid processes in subduction zones.

    PubMed

    Peacock, S A

    1990-04-20

    Fluids play a critical role in subduction zones and arc magmatism. At shallow levels in subduction zones (<40 kilometers depth), expulsion of large volumes of pore waters and CH(4)-H(2)O fluids produced by diagenetic and low-grade metamorphic reactions affect the thermal and rheological evolution of the accretionary prism and provide nutrients for deep-sea biological communities. At greater depths, H(2)O and CO(2) released by metamorphic reactions in the subducting oceanic crust may alter the bulk composition in the overlying mantle wedge and trigger partial melting reactions. The location and conse-quences of fluid production in subduction zones can be constrained by consideration of phase diagrams for relevant bulk compositions in conjunction with fluid and rock pressure-temperature-time paths predicted by numerical heat-transfer models. Partial melting of subducting, amphibole-bearing oceanic crust is predicted only within several tens of million years of the initiation of subduction in young oceanic lithosphere. In cooler subduction zones, partial melting appears to occur primarily in the overlying mantle wedge as a result of fluid infiltration. PMID:17784486

  17. Petrology of HP metamorphic veins in coesite-bearing eclogite from western Tianshan, China: Fluid processes and elemental mobility during exhumation in a cold subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lü, Zeng; Zhang, Lifei; Du, Jinxue; Yang, Xin; Tian, Zuolin; Xia, Bin

    2012-04-01

    A petrological study was carried out for high pressure (HP) veins which cut through the host coesite-bearing eclogites at Habutengsu-Kebuerte in western Tianshan, China. The results place constraints on the origin and property of metamorphic fluids during subduction-zone metamorphism. Omphacite-, clinozoisite- and quartz-dominated veins occur on centimeter to meter scales within lens-shaped and layered eclogites, or cutting into the country rocks of garnet phengite schists. Coesite-bearing eclogites mainly consist of fibrous fine-grained omphacite and porphyroblastic garnet, with minor amounts of amphibole (mainly barroisite), clinozoisite, white mica (mainly paragonite) and rutile. The veins are pronouncedly coarse-grained compared to the host eclogites and commonly consist of quartz, clinozosite, rutile, white mica (phengite and paragonite) and garnet, with or without omphacite, titanite, apatite, carbonate (mainly dolomite) and glaucophane. Fluid inclusions are abundant in vein omphacite, titanite and apatite, but are rare in the equivalent minerals of host eclogites. Rounded vein garnets usually occur close to the sharp interface of vein and host eclogite. Omphacite in the veins is characterized by its euhedral form surrounded by quartz, or coarse bladed aggregates in contrast to the fibrous or patchy one, suggesting dynamic recrystallization in the host rocks. Omphacite in both veins and host eclogites has similar jadeite contents (Jd40-50), indicating formation at eclogite-facies metamorphic conditions. Vein phengite uniformly contains certain amounts of Ba with maximum BaO content of 3.16-4.25 wt.%, suggesting that Ba was mobilized during the exhumation of UHP rocks. Specific textures of vein minerals, such as the enclosure of magnesite (or calcite) in dolomite, rutile in titanite, and the occurrence of zoned Ba-rich phengite, indicate the chemical variability of channelized fluids over time. Based on Zr content in rutile and the presence of paragonite, omphacite, phengite, glaucophane as well as the little deformed textures of HP veins, it is estimated that the vein-forming fluids would flow at about 1.3-2.1 GPa and 540-580 °C, corresponding to the stage of retrograde eclogite-facies recrystallization during exhumation of the UHP eclogites that formed at peak P-T conditions of > 2.7 GPa and 460-520 °C. The HP veins occur as a consequence of a regional tectonothermal event, triggering breakdown of lawsonite within the UHP eclogites. Based on the petrology of vein minerals, it is inferred that the HP fluids were enriched in Si, Ca, Na, Al and Ba. This suggests that these elements could be mobilized during the retrograde metamorphism of UHP eclogites in a cold subduction zone. Coeval pervasive flow of HP metamorphic fluids through the UHP eclogites at this stage may be an important process to eliminate most mineralogical evidence of the UHP metamorphism.

  18. Mineralogical Evidence for the Bulk Transformation of Continental Crust to Ultrahigh-Pressure Conditions in Subduction Zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peterman, E. M.; Hacker, B. R.; Kylander-Clark, A. R.

    2005-12-01

    Evidence for (ultra)high-pressure --(U)HP-- metamorphism in modern orogenic belts and the preservation of exhumed (U)HP terranes around the world suggest that subduction and exhumation of continental crust plays an important role in Phanerozoic plate tectonics. The Western Gneiss region (WGR) of Norway, a major (U)HP province extending over 60,000 km2, provides an excellent opportunity to study how subduction to depths >100 km affects continental crust. By studying a ~60 km wide transect bounded to the north by Vartdalsfjorden and Rovdefjorden and the south by the Möre og Romsdal county boundary, we are able to examine mineralogical changes that occurred during subduction and exhumation within a rock composed predominantly of orthogneiss and variably transformed mafic bodies, which indicate the depths to which these rocks were subducted. Previous studies (e.g. Hacker et al., 2005) have suggested that Caledonian deformation in WGR host gneisses is primarily limited to brittle-ductile fabrics characterized by greenschist to lower-amphibolite facies metamorphism; the majority of the deformation in the rocks, including the pervasive foliation and foliation-parallel isoclinal folds, occurred between 1200 and 900 Ma. On the northern half of our study area, however, locally occurring neoblastic garnet crosscuts the foliation in the gneiss. The boundary of this garnet zone coincides with the local HP-UHP boundary, as determined by the presence of coesite in eclogite. Because garnet can retain information about changes in pressure and temperature, as well as the availability of water within the crust to catalyze chemical reactions, our findings suggest that 1) portions of the orthogneiss did transform at high pressures, 2) the presence of garnet within the orthogneiss may indicate conditions that approximate UHP and can therefore be useful in defining the boundaries between UHP and HP conditions, and 3) the growth of garnet during (U)HP metamorphism may be controlled by hydration of the crust, thus explaining the partial transformation to (U)HP mineral assemblages throughout the WGR.

  19. Evolution of a Subduction Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Noack, Lena; Van Hoolst, Tim; Dehant, Veronique

    2014-05-01

    The purpose of this study is to understand how Earth's surface might have evolved with time and to examine in a more general way the initiation and continuance of subduction zones and the possible formation of continents on an Earth-like planet. Plate tectonics and continents seem to influence the likelihood of a planet to harbour life, and both are strongly influenced by the planetary interior (e.g. mantle temperature and rheology) and surface conditions (e.g. stabilizing effect of continents, atmospheric temperature), but may also depend on the biosphere. Employing the Fortran convection code CHIC (developed at the Royal Observatory of Belgium), we simulate a subduction zone with a pre-defined weak zone (between oceanic and continental crust) and a fixed plate velocity for the subducting oceanic plate (Quinquis et al. in preparation). In our study we first investigate the main factors that influence the subduction process. We simulate the subduction of an oceanic plate beneath a continental plate (Noack et al., 2013). The crust is separated into an upper crust and a lower crust. We apply mixed Newtonian/non-Newtonian rheology and vary the parameters that are most likely to influence the subduction of the ocanic plate, as for example density of the crust/mantle, surface temperature, plate velocity and subduction angle. The second part of our study concentrates on the long-term evolution of a subduction zone. Even though we model only the upper mantle (until a depth of 670km), the subducted crust is allowed to flow into the lower mantle, where it is no longer subject to our investigation. This way we can model the subduction zone over long time spans, for which we assume a continuous inflow of the oceanic plate into the investigated domain. We include variations in mantle temperatures (via secular cooling and decay of radioactive heat sources) and dehydration of silicates (leading to stiffening of the material). We investigate how the mantle environment influences the subduction of the oceanic crust in terms of subduction velocity and subduction angle over time. We develop scaling laws combining the subduction velocity and angle depending on the mantle environment (and thus time). These laws can then be applied to continental growth simulations with 1D parameterized models (Höning et al., in press) or 2D/3D subduction zone simulations at specific geological times (using the correct subduction zone setting). References: Quinquis, M. et al. (in preparation). A comparison of thermo-mechanical subduction models. In preparation for G3. Noack, L., Van Hoolst, T., Dehant, V., and Breuer, D. (2013). Relevance of continents for habitability and self-consistent formation of continents on early Earth. XIII International Workshop on Modelling of Mantle and Lithosphere Dynamics, Hønefoss, Norway, 31. Aug. - 5. Sept. 2013. Höning, D., Hansen-Goos, H., Airo, A., and Spohn, T. (in press). Biotic vs. abiotic Earth: A model for mantle hydration and continental coverage. Planetary and Space Science.

  20. SUBDUCTION ZONES Robert J. Stern

    E-print Network

    Stern, Robert J.

    SUBDUCTION ZONES Robert J. Stern Geosciences Department University of Texas at Dallas Richardson December 2002. [1] Subduction zones are where sediments, oceanic crust, and mantle lithosphere return to and reequilibrate with Earth's mantle. Subduction zones are interior ex- pressions of Earth's 55,000 km

  1. H2O-fluid-saturated melting of subducted continental crust facilitates exhumation of ultrahigh-pressure rocks in continental subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Labrousse, L.; Duretz, T.; Gerya, T.

    2015-10-01

    We present two-dimensional numerical models of plate subduction and collision inspired by the Scandinavian Caledonian orogeny to investigate the possible impact of continental crust partial melting on the exhumation of ultra-high pressure metamorphic rocks. Three possible reactions were tested: low temperature solidus representing H2O-fluid-saturated partial melting, and two end-member reaction curves for dehydration melting. Thermo-mechanical effects of partial melting were implemented as (1) a viscosity decrease as a determined rheologically critical melt percentage was reached (here 0.1), (2) a change in effective heat capacity and adiabatic heating/cooling accounting for a latent heat term in the heat equation. Among the 3 tested reactions, only H2O-fluid-saturated partial melting drastically modifies the collision dynamics from the non-melting reference model holding all other parameters constant. A substantially low general viscosity truncation (here 1017 Pa s) is needed to properly resolve the effect of partial melting on deep collision processes. Low temperature melting indeed induces the development of a low viscosity buoyant plume prior to slab detachment, where migmatites exhume from UHP conditions at rates and with pressure-temperature paths similar to the natural values acknowledged for the Norwegian Caledonides. High temperature melting has no drastic influence on early collision dynamics. While positive buoyancy remains the first order driver for the exhumation of buried continental rocks, exhumation initiates in these cases with eduction subsequent to slab detachment. Melting and formation of a migmatite plume can later occur along decompression path while continental crust undergoes thermal reequilibration at temperatures above 900 °C. Some of the partially molten material can also relaminate in the overriding plate rather than exhume within the collision zone. Even if minor in terms of amount of magma produced, H2O-fluid-saturated partial melting at UHP conditions could therefore have a dramatic rheological effect and actually limits continental rocks subduction and facilitates their exhumation.

  2. Crustal growth in subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vogt, Katharina; Castro, Antonio; Gerya, Taras

    2015-04-01

    There is a broad interest in understanding the physical principles leading to arc magmatisim at active continental margins and different mechanisms have been proposed to account for the composition and evolution of the continental crust. It is widely accepted that water released from the subducting plate lowers the melting temperature of the overlying mantle allowing for "flux melting" of the hydrated mantle. However, relamination of subducted crustal material to the base of the continental crust has been recently suggested to account for the growth and composition of the continental crust. We use petrological-thermo-mechanical models of active subduction zones to demonstrate that subduction of crustal material to sublithospheric depth may result in the formation of a tectonic rock mélange composed of basalt, sediment and hydrated /serpentinized mantle. This rock mélange may evolve into a partially molten diapir at asthenospheric depth and rise through the mantle because of its intrinsic buoyancy prior to emplacement at crustal levels (relamination). This process can be episodic and long-lived, forming successive diapirs that represent multiple magma pulses. Recent laboratory experiments of Castro et al. (2013) have demonstrated that reactions between these crustal components (i.e. basalt and sediment) produce andesitic melt typical for rocks of the continental crust. However, melt derived from a composite diapir will inherit the geochemical characteristics of its source and show distinct temporal variations of radiogenic isotopes based on the proportions of basalt and sediment in the source (Vogt et al., 2013). Hence, partial melting of a composite diapir is expected to produce melt with a constant major element composition, but substantial changes in terms of radiogenic isotopes. However, crustal growth at active continental margins may also involve accretionary processes by which new material is added to the continental crust. Oceanic plateaus and other crustal units may collide with continental margins to form collisional orogens and accreted terranes in places where oceanic lithosphere is recycled back into the mantle. We use thermomechanical-petrological models of an oceanic-continental subduction zone to analyse the dynamics of terrane accretion and its implications to arc magmatisim. It is shown that terrane accretion may result in the rapid growth of continental crust, which is in accordance with geological data on some major segments of the continental crust. Direct consequences of terrane accretion may include slab break off, subduction zone transference, structural reworking, formation of high-pressure terranes and partial melting (Vogt and Gerya., 2014), forming complex suture zones of accreted and partially molten units. Castro, A., Vogt, K., Gerya, T., 2013. Generation of new continental crust by sublithospheric silicic-magma relamination in arcs: A test of Taylor's andesite model. Gondwana Research, 23, 1554-1566. Vogt, K., Castro, A., Gerya, T., 2013. Numerical modeling of geochemical variations caused by crustal relamination. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 14, 470-487. Vogt, K., Gerya, T., 2014. From oceanic plateaus to allochthonous terranes: Numerical Modelling. Gondwana Research, 25, 494-508

  3. Cascadia Subduction Zone

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Frankel, Arthur D.; Petersen, Mark D.

    2008-01-01

    The geometry and recurrence times of large earthquakes associated with the Cascadia Subduction Zone (CSZ) were discussed and debated at a March 28-29, 2006 Pacific Northwest workshop for the USGS National Seismic Hazard Maps. The CSZ is modeled from Cape Mendocino in California to Vancouver Island in British Columbia. We include the same geometry and weighting scheme as was used in the 2002 model (Frankel and others, 2002) based on thermal constraints (Fig. 1; Fluck and others, 1997 and a reexamination by Wang et al., 2003, Fig. 11, eastern edge of intermediate shading). This scheme includes four possibilities for the lower (eastern) limit of seismic rupture: the base of elastic zone (weight 0.1), the base of transition zone (weight 0.2), the midpoint of the transition zone (weight 0.2), and a model with a long north-south segment at 123.8? W in the southern and central portions of the CSZ, with a dogleg to the northwest in the northern portion of the zone (weight 0.5). The latter model was derived from the approximate average longitude of the contour of the 30 km depth of the CSZ as modeled by Fluck et al. (1997). A global study of the maximum depth of thrust earthquakes on subduction zones by Tichelaar and Ruff (1993) indicated maximum depths of about 40 km for most of the subduction zones studied, although the Mexican subduction zone had a maximum depth of about 25 km (R. LaForge, pers. comm., 2006). The recent inversion of GPS data by McCaffrey et al. (2007) shows a significant amount of coupling (a coupling factor of 0.2-0.3) as far east as 123.8? West in some portions of the CSZ. Both of these lines of evidence lend support to the model with a north-south segment at 123.8? W.

  4. Late Triassic alkaline complex in Sulu UHP terrane: Implications for post-collisional magmatism along the continental subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, H.; Song, Y.; Liu, Q.

    2014-12-01

    In order to insight into crust-mantle interaction triggered by partial melting of the subudcted continental crust during its exhumation, we carried out a combined study on Shidao alkaline complex in the Sulu ultrahigh pressure (UHP) terrane. The alkaline complex is composed of shoshonitic to ultrapotassic gabbro, pyroxene syenite, amphibole syenite, quartz syenite, and granite. Field researches suggest that the mafic rocks are earlier than the felsic ones in sequence. LA-ICPMS zircon U-Pb dating on them gives Late Triassic ages of 214 ± 2 to 200 ± 3 Ma from mafic to felsic rocks. These ages are a bit younger than Late Triassic ages for partial melting of the Sulu UHP terrane during exhumation, indicating syn-exhumation magmatism during continental collision. The alkaline rocks have wide ranges of SiO2 (49.7 - 76.7 wt.%), MgO (8.25 - 0.03 wt.%),total Fe2O3 (9.23 - 0.47 wt.%), CaO (8.39 - 0.39 wt.%), Ni (126.0 - 0.07 ppm), and Cr (182.0 - 0.45 ppm) contents. Other major oxides are regularly changed with SiO2. The alkaline rocks have characteristics of arc-like patterns in the trace element distribution, e.g., enrichment of LREE and LILE (Rb, Ba, Th and U), depletion of HFSE (Nb, Ta, P and Ti), and positive Pb anomalies. From the mafic to felsic rocks, (La/Yb)N ratios and contents of the total REE, Sr and Ba are decreased but Rb contents are increased. The alkaline rocks also display features of A2-type granitoids, suggesting a post-collisional magmatism. They have high initial 87Sr/86Sr ratios (0.70575 and 0.70927) and negative ?Nd(t) values (-18.6 to -15.0) for whole-rock. The homogeneous initial 87Sr/86Sr ratios and ?Nd(t) values of the alkaline rocks are almost unchanged with SiO2 and MgO contents, suggesting a fractional crystallization (FC) process from a same parental magma. Our studies suggest a series of crust-mantle interaction processes along the continental subduction interface as follows: (1) melts from partial melting of the subducted continental crust during its exhumation metasomatized the overlying mantle wedge; (2) partial melting of the enriched lithospheric mantle generated the Late Triassic alkaline complex; and (3) the alkaline magma was successively experienced crystal fractionation mainly dominated by olivine, clinopyroxene, plagioclase and alkali feldspar.

  5. Geodynamic models of terrane accretion: Testing the fate of island arcs, oceanic plateaus, and continental fragments in subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tetreault, J. L.; Buiter, S. J. H.

    2012-08-01

    Crustal growth at convergent margins can occur by the accretion of future allochthonous terranes (FATs), such as island arcs, oceanic plateaus, submarine ridges, and continental fragments. Using geodynamic numerical experiments, we demonstrate how crustal properties of FATs impact the amount of FAT crust that is accreted or subducted, the type of accretionary process, and the style of deformation on the overriding plate. Our results show that (1) accretion of crustal units occurs when there is a weak detachment layer within the FAT, (2) the depth of detachment controls the amount of crust accreted onto the overriding plate, and (3) lithospheric buoyancy does not prevent FAT subduction during constant convergence. Island arcs, oceanic plateaus, and continental fragments will completely subduct, despite having buoyant lithospheric densities, if they have rheologically strong crusts. Weak basal layers, representing pre-existing weaknesses or detachment layers, will either lead to underplating of faulted blocks of FAT crust to the overriding plate or collision and suturing of an unbroken FAT crust. Our experiments show that the weak, ultramafic layer found at the base of island arcs and oceanic plateaus plays a significant role in terrane accretion. The different types of accretionary processes also affect deformation and uplift patterns in the overriding plate, trench migration and jumping, and the dip of the plate interface. The resulting accreted terranes produced from our numerical experiments resemble observed accreted terranes, such as the Wrangellia Terrane and Klamath Mountain terranes in the North American Cordilleran Belt.

  6. A 3D Velocity Model of the Central Cascadia Subduction Zone beneath the Oregon Continental Shelf and Coast Range

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kenyon, C.; Trehu, A. M.; Toomey, D. R.; Wilcock, W. S.; Carbotte, S. M.; Carton, H. D.; Canales, J.

    2013-12-01

    Signals from the R/V Langseth's tuned airgun array were recorded on 6 ocean-bottom seismometers and 35 EarthScope FlexArray seismometers deployed in the Oregon Coast Range from 43.5° to 45°N as a piggyback project on the 2012 Ridge2Trench experiment to image the structure of the Juan de Fuca plate. This section of the Juan de Fuca/North America plate boundary slipped in 2 moderate low-angle thrust earthquakes in 2004, and continuing seismicity has clustered around these events since that time. It has also been associated with a transition in megathrust recurrence rate based on paleoseismic data and exhibits anomalous locking characteristics in geodetic data. Previously acquired bathymetric, potential field, and seismic data indicate the presence of subducted seamounts in this region and hint at large velocity variations of the overlying forearc crust immediately above the plate boundary [Tréhu et al., 2012]. The sources for this study are ~18,000 airgun shots along 4 lines on the continental shelf and upper slope and a line oblique to the coast that extends across the margin to the trench (and ultimately to the ridge). Data quality is excellent, with strong Pg and PmP arrivals observed at most stations for all shots. A preliminary look at the data supports the presence of large along-strike velocity variations in this region. To date, ~2/3 of the data have been picked. We will present velocity models that merge the new data with constraints from 2D and 3D onshore/offshore data acquired in 1989 and 1996 to improve the resolution and extend the velocity model to the south to include Heceta Bank, a region of uplifted late Miocene and early Pliocene sediments underlain by a previously poorly resolved high density anomaly. [Tréhu, A.M., Blakely, R.J., Williams, M.C., Subducted seamounts and recent earthquakes beneath the central Cascadia forearc, Geology, v. 40, p. 103-106, 2012

  7. Seafloor morphology of the continental slope in front the Petacalco Bay and its tsunamigenic relationship at the Mexican sector of the Middle American subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mortera-Gutierrez, C. A.; Bandy, W. L.; Millan-Motolinia, C.; Ponce-Nuñez, F.; Ortega-Ramirez, J.

    2014-12-01

    The recent occurrence of offshore, large, earthquake ruptures in the western limit of the Guerrero Seismic Gap and the scattered data of seafloor morphology of the continental slope along this sector at the Mexican Mid American subduction zone have encouraged the UNAM marine geophysical group to initiate a mapping program at the Guerrero margin, from the shelf break to the Middle American Trench. The main objective of this initiative is to have a complete cover of the seafloor morphology of the Guerrero slope as the background data for comparative studies of the seafloor deformation in case of future offshore earthquake ruptures in this region. At he first stage of this initiative, we have mapped the continental slope in front the Petacalco Bay, west of the Guerrero Seismic Gap, where three important large earthquakes occurred and caused great damages in Mexico City: Petatlán earthquake (Mw=7.6) at 1979, Michoacán earthquake (Mw=8.1) and its aftershock (Mw=7.9) at 1985. Geophysical results of two campaigns carry in 2012 (MAMRIV12) and 2013 (BABPET13) on board the BO EL PUMA are presented which include multibeam data and subbottom profiles. These data sets cover an area between 101°W and 103°W, and from the shelf-slope break to the trench. The multibeam chart shows details of the hydrological erosion induced by many submarine cannons at the upper slope, whereas the seafloor relief in the lower slope is dominated by tectonic structures. The subbottom profiles and the seafloor morphology evidence zones of big slumps and faults. For first time the Rio Balsas submarine cannon is completed chart, reaching the trench basin. The river course is deflected, possibly by shear faulting. There are slump sites near the trench that probably one is associated to the 1925 tsunami at Zihuatanejo, Guerrero. The 1985 Michoacán aftershock was accompany by a small Tsunami. At that time, the lack of morphology data in this slope inhibited further studies of seafloor-deformation and its tsunamigenic relationship. Funding providing by UNAM-DGAPA-PAPIIT grants: IN115613 and IN115513

  8. The Role of H2O in Subduction Zone Magmatism

    E-print Network

    Skemer, Philip

    The Role of H2O in Subduction Zone Magmatism Timothy L. Grove,1 Christy B. Till,1,2 and Michael J, subducted slab, chlorite, H2O-saturated, hydrous magma, arc magmas Abstract Water is a key ingredient that occurs when magmas cool and crystallize in Earth's continental crust. The source of H2O for arc magma

  9. Why subduction zones are curved

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mahadevan, L.; Bendick, R.; Liang, Haiyi

    2010-12-01

    We give an explanation for the polarity, localization, shape, size, and initiation of subduction zones on Earth. By considering a soft, thin, curved lithospheric cap with either elastic or viscous rheology supported by a thick, nearly incompressible mantle, we find two different characteristic subduction geometries arise depending on boundary conditions: (1) plate boundaries where subduction results primarily from the gravitational body force (free subduction) have characteristic plate lengths and form arc-shaped dimpled segments resulting from the competition between bending and stretching in edge buckling modes of thin spherical shells, and (2) subduction zones due to localized applied loads that push one slab of thin, positively buoyant lithosphere beneath an overriding plate (forced subduction) form localized straight segments, consistent with the deformation of indented spherical shells. Both types of subduction are nonlinear subcritical instabilities, so small perturbations in the mechanical properties of the lithosphere have pronounced effects on subduction initiation and evolution. Yet in both cases, geometric relationships determined by the shape of the Earth itself play the most critical role in controlling the basic morphology and characteristic length scales of subduction zones.

  10. Double-Sided Wedge Model For Retreating Subduction Zones: Applications to the Apenninic and Hellenic Subduction Zones (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brandon, M. T.; Willett, S.; Rahl, J. M.; Cowan, D. S.

    2009-12-01

    We propose a new model for the evolution of accreting wedges at retreating subduction zones. Advance and retreat refer to the polarity of the velocity of the overriding plate with respect to subduction zone. Advance indicates a velocity toward the subduction zone (e.g., Andes) and retreat, away from the subduction zone (e.g. Apennines, Crete). The tectonic mode of a subduction zone, whether advancing or retreating, is a result of both the rollback of the subducting plate and the absolute motion of the overriding plate. The Hellenic and Apenninic wedges are both associated with retreating subduction zones. The Hellenic wedge has been active for about 100 Ma, whereas the Apenninic wedge has been active for about 30 Ma. Comparison of maximum metamorphic pressures for exhumed rocks in these wedges (25 and 30 km, respectively) with the maximum thickness of the wedges at present (30 and 35 km, respectively) indicates that each wedge has maintained a relatively steady size during its evolution. This conclusion is based on the constraint that both frictional and viscous wedges are subject to the constraint of a steady wedge taper, so that thickness and width are strongly correlated. Both wedges show clear evidence of steady accretion during their full evolution, with accretionary fluxes of about 60 and 200 km2 Ma-1. These wedges also both show steady drift of material from the front to the rear of the wedge, with horizontal shortening dominating in the front of the wedge, and horizontal extension within the back of the wedge. We propose that these wedges represent two back-to-back wedges, with a convergent wedge on the leading side (proside), and a divergent wedge on the trailing side (retroside). In this sense, the wedges are bound by two plates. The subducting plate is familiar. It creates a thrust-sense traction beneath the proside of the wedge. The second plate is an “educting” plate, which is creates a normal-sense traction beneath the retroside of the wedge. The educting plate underlies the Tyrrenhian Sea west of the Apennines and the Cretean Sea north of Crete. The stretched crust that overlies this plate represents highly thinned wedge material that has been removed or decreted from the wedge. This decretion process accounts for the mean motion within the wedge, from pro to retro side, and the pervasive thinning within the retroside. It also explains how these wedges are able to maintain a steady wedge size with time. An important prediction of this model is that different deformational styles, involving thickening and thinning, can occur within the same tectonics setting. This is in contrast the widely cited idea that tectonic thinning is a late- or post-orogenic process.

  11. Polyphase formation and exhumation of high- to ultrahigh-pressure rocks in continental subduction zone: Numerical modeling and application to the Sulu ultrahigh-pressure terrane in eastern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Zhonghai; Gerya, Taras V.

    2009-09-01

    High- to ultrahigh-pressure (HP-UHP) metamorphic rocks commonly form and exhume during the early continental collision, and many questions related to their origin still remain unresolved. We focus our study on explaining the poly metamorphic origins of many HP-UHP terranes composed of tectonic units having strongly variable ages, peak metamorphic conditions, and P-T paths. These features are especially well characterized for the Sulu UHP terrane in eastern China which we have chosen therefore as the reference case. We conducted 2-D thermomechanical numerical modeling of continental subduction associated with formation and exhumation of HP-UHP rocks. Our experiments suggest existence of several consequent episodes of (U)HP rocks exhumation related to the inherently cyclic origin of continental crust subduction-detachment-exhumation processes. Three major phases of these processes are identified in our reference model for the Sulu UHP terrane: (1) first and (2) second exhumation episodes of HP rocks originated in the subduction channel at lithospheric depths and (3) exhumation of UHP rocks originated at asthenospheric depths. Numerical models also suggest that subducted UHP rocks which are positively buoyant compared to the mantle may detach from the slab forming a flattened plume underplating the overriding lithosphere. This sublithospheric plume may exist for several million years being heated to 800-900°C by the surrounding hot mantle. At the later stage, upward extrusion of hot partially molten rocks from the plume may exhume high-temperature (HT) UHP complexes toward the surface.

  12. Permeabilities of Subduction Zone Sediments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Screaton, E.; Gamage, K. R.; Daigle, H.; Harris, R. N.

    2013-12-01

    Permeabilities of subseafloor sediments control fluid expulsion from sediments as they are subducted or accreted and thus, compaction state, fluid overpressures, and deformation. We compare results from Integrated Ocean Drilling Program samples to compare to previously-developed permeability-porosity relationships for subduction zone sediments. Hemipelagic clay samples obtained from the incoming plate Kumano transect of the Nankai Trough (NanTroSEIZE) yield slightly lower permeability for a given porosity than previously reported results from Nankai Trough's Muroto transect and are lower than clay-rich sediments from the upper plate of CRISP offshore the Osa Peninsula of Costa Rica (CRISP). Samples from the Pacific Equatorial Transect (PEAT) and the South Pacific Gyre provide further insight to permeability behavior of sediments deposited in the Pacific basin. South Pacific Gyre sediments consist of slowly deposited pelagic clay with little biogenic or coarse clastic input. Measured permeabilities for given porosities are consistently lower than values reported for clay-rich sediments of Nankai and Costa Rica. PEAT samples comprise biogenic oozes and yield inconsistent results, with some of the highest permeabilities (10-14 m2) as well as some results similar to clay-rich sediments.

  13. Depth of seismic coupling along subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tichelaar, Bart W.; Ruff, Larry J.

    1993-02-01

    The depth dependence of underthrusting seismicity is investigated here by mapping the maximum depth of the coupled plate interface in several subduction zones that have generated large and great earthquakes. Transition depths of coupling-uncoupling are found for the circum-Pacific subduction zones of Honshu, Kuriles, Kamchatka, Aleutians, Alaska, and Mexico. For an average P wave velocity of 6.7 km/s above the plate interface the stability transition occurs at 40 +/- 5 km for most subduction zones. At the Hokkaido trench junction, where the Japan trench and the Kurile trench interact, seismic coupling is deep and extends down to 52-55 km. Deep coupling is also found in the Coquimbo region in central Chile. The Mexico subduction zone transition occurs at 20-30 km. The mechanism that may determine coupling depth is explored.

  14. Density model of the Cascadia subduction zone

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Romanyuk, T.V.; Mooney, W.D.; Blakely, R.J.

    2001-01-01

    The main goal of this work is to construct self-consistent density models along two profiles crossing the northern and central Cascadia subduction zone that have been comprehensively studied on the basis of geological, geophysical, etc. data.

  15. Sediment-derived fluids in subduction zones: Isotopic evidence from veins in blueschist and eclogite of the Franciscan Complex, California

    SciTech Connect

    Nelson, B.K. )

    1991-10-01

    Isotopic analyses of minerals from veins that cut high-grade blueschist and eclogite blocks in the central belt of the Franciscan Complex provide constraints on the chronology of metamorphic events and on the origin and movement of fluids within the subduction zone. A Rb-Sr age of 153 {plus minus}1 Ma obtained for minerals from veins and open cavities that formed contemporaneously with retrograde blueschist facies metamorphism is a minimum age for the prograde metamorphism. The veining precedes the last episode of sedimentary-matrix melange formation by a minimum 15 to 20 Ma, during which time the blocks must have been stored within the subduction complex at low temperatures and without undergoing penetrative deformation. Initial Nd-isotope compositions ({epsilon}{sub Nd}) of the vein minerals range from +10.8 to {minus}2.4, indicating that some fluids were derived predominantly from dehydration of subducted mid-ocean ridge basalt, but that other fluids had a component derived from subducted sediment. The provenance of the subducted sediment was within old continental crust, thus associating the Franciscan paleo-subduction complex with a continental craton by the time of vein formation.

  16. Earthquake hazards on the cascadia subduction zone

    SciTech Connect

    Heaton, T.H.; Hartzell, S.H.

    1987-04-10

    Large subduction earthquakes on the Cascadia subduction zone pose a potential seismic hazard. Very young oceanic lithosphere (10 million years old) is being subducted beneath North America at a rate of approximately 4 centimeters per year. The Cascadia subduction zone shares many characteristics with subduction zones in southern Chile, southwestern Japan, and Colombia, where comparably young oceanic lithosphere is also subducting. Very large subduction earthquakes, ranging in energy magnitude (M/sub w/) between 8 and 9.5, have occurred along these other subduction zones. If the Cascadia subduction zone is also storing elastic energy, a sequence of several great earthquakes (M/sub w/ 8) or a giant earthquake (M/sub w/ 9) would be necessary to fill this 1200-kilometer gap. The nature of strong ground motions recorded during subduction earthquakes of M/sub w/ less than 8.2 is discussed. Strong ground motions from even larger earthquakes (M/sub w/ up to 9.5) are estimated by simple simulations. If large subduction earthquakes occur in the Pacific Northwest, relatively strong shaking can be expected over a large region. Such earthquakes may also be accompanied by large local tsunamis. 35 references, 6 figures.

  17. Earthquake hazards on the cascadia subduction zone.

    PubMed

    Heaton, T H; Hartzell, S H

    1987-04-10

    Large subduction earthquakes on the Cascadia subduction zone pose a potential seismic hazard. Very young oceanic lithosphere (10 million years old) is being subducted beneath North America at a rate of approximately 4 centimeters per year. The Cascadia subduction zone shares many characteristics with subduction zones in southern Chile, southwestern Japan, and Colombia, where comparably young oceanic lithosphere is also subducting. Very large subduction earthquakes, ranging in energy magnitude (M(w)) between 8 and 9.5, have occurred along these other subduction zones. If the Cascadia subduction zone is also storing elastic energy, a sequence of several great earthquakes (M(w) 8) or a giant earthquake (M(w) 9) would be necessary to fill this 1200-kilometer gap. The nature of strong ground motions recorded during subduction earthquakes of M(w) less than 8.2 is discussed. Strong ground motions from even larger earthquakes (M(w) up to 9.5) are estimated by simple simulations. If large subduction earthquakes occur in the Pacific Northwest, relatively strong shaking can be expected over a large region. Such earthquakes may also be accompanied by large local tsunamis. PMID:17789780

  18. Seismic coupling and uncoupling at subduction zones

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ruff, L.; Kanamori, H.

    1983-01-01

    Some of the correlations concerning the properties of subduction zones are reviewed. A quantitative global comparison of many subduction zones reveals that the largest earthquakes occur in zones with young lithosphere and fast convergence rates. Maximum earthquake size is directly related to the asperity distribution on the fault plane. This observation can be translated into a simple model of seismic coupling where the horizontal compressive stress between two plates is proportional to the ratio of the summed asperity area to the total area of the contact surface. Plate age and rate can control asperity distribution directly through the horizontal compressive stress associated with the vertical and horizontal velocities of subducting slabs. The basalt to eclogite phase change in the down-going oceanic crust may be largely responsible for the uncoupling of subduction zones below a depth of about 40 km.

  19. Mantle Convection with Strong Subduction Zones

    E-print Network

    Conrad, Clint

    Chapter 6 Mantle Convection with Strong Subduction Zones Abstract. Because mantle viscosity deformation associated with subduction should resist plate motions, and thus slow convection in the underlying resolved in mantle-scale convection models, so its a ect on convection is di cult to investigate. We have

  20. Depth-varying rupture properties of subduction zone megathrust faults

    E-print Network

    Cerveny, Vlastislav

    ­45 km in subduction zones where relatively young oceanic lithosphere is being underthrust with shallowDepth-varying rupture properties of subduction zone megathrust faults Thorne Lay,1 Hiroo Kanamori,2] Subduction zone plate boundary megathrust faults accommodate relative plate motions with spatially varying

  1. Subduction-zone cycling of nitrogen in serpentinized mantle rocks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Halama, R.; Bebout, G. E.; John, T.; Scambelluri, M.

    2010-12-01

    Nitrogen (N) has shown great potential as a geochemical tracer of volatiles recycling, in part because of large differences in the N isotope composition of the various Earth reservoirs. The subduction flux of N in serpentinized oceanic mantle could be as important as N input flux in oceanic crust and even sediment because, although its N concentrations are lower, its volume is potentially far greater than that of the crust/sediment. However, recycling of oceanic mantle rocks is still poorly constrained for the N cycle, and N isotope data for subduction-related ultramafic rocks are scarce [1]. The primary goal of this study is to characterize the subduction flux of N in subducting altered oceanic mantle by documenting concentrations and isotopic compositions of N in mantle rocks that reflect different stages of the metamorphic subduction zone cycle. The results are crucial to assess the composition of N recycled into the mantle, to determine the extent to which N can be retained in subducted mantle rocks to depths approaching those beneath arcs, and to balance N subduction-zone inputs with outputs in arc volcanic gases. Moreover, information has been gained regarding the redistribution and isotope fractionation of N via ultramafic dehydration and metamorphic fluid-rock interaction. The samples analyzed in this study are ultramafic rocks from shallow oceanic environments to increasing P-T conditions up to depths of ~70 km. Three distinct metamorphic grades, reflecting seafloor fluid uptake, water release due to brucite breakdown and the final antigorite breakdown, were investigated: 1. Pre-subduction serpentinized mantle peridotite from non-subducted ophiolite sequences from the Northern Apennines, Italy (Monte Nero). 2. Eclogite-facies antigorite serpentinites from the Ligurian Alps, Italy (Erro Tobbio). 3. Eclogite-facies chlorite harzburgites derived from dehydration of serpentinites from the Betic Cordillera, Spain (Cerro de Almirez). The pre-subduction peridotites have the lowest N concentrations (1.3-2.1 ppm) and highly variable ?15N values (-4 to +3). High-pressure peridotites have higher N contents (up to 20 ppm) and mostly positive ?15N values. Data for veins in the peridotites are suggestive that N isotopes were not significantly fractionated by dehydration. Hence, N recycled through subduction zones via peridotites should show a range in ?15N similar to that of oceanic serpentinized peridotites. The range in ?15N for serpentinized peridotites, from pristine mantle values towards those typical of modern marine sediments, suggests derivation of N from organic-sedimentary sources, incorporated during bending-related faulting of the subducting slab and/or via metasomatic additions during subduction. N is enriched in serpentinized peridotites compared to pristine mantle rocks, and it is retained down to depths of at least 70 km and possibly deep into the mantle. Hence, serpentinized peridotites appear to represent an important reservoir for deep subduction zone N cycling. [1] Philippot et al. (2007), Min. Pet. 91:11-24

  2. Seismicity, metamorphism and rheology of the lower continental crust

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Austrheim, Håkon

    2014-05-01

    Seismological data document that both normal earthquakes and tremors occur in the lower continental crust. Pseudotachylytes (frictional melts and ultracommunited rocks) have been described from several high grade metamorphic terrains and may be the geological manifestation of this seismicity. The Grenville (c. 930Ma) granulite facies complex (T: 800 °C; P: ?10kbar) of the Lindås Nappe in the Bergen Arcs, W-Norway underwent a fluid induced partial eclogite (T: 600-650 °C; P: 15-20 kbar) and amphibolite facies metamorphism during the Caledonian (c.400-430 Ma) continent collision. Pseudotachylyte fault and injection veins formed in the dry granulites at or close to the reaction fronts both in the eclogitized (western parts) and the amphibolitized (eastern parts) of the Nappe. They are locally recrystalized with the development of amphibolite and eclogite facies assemblages demonstrating that they formed pre or syn the Caledonian metamorphism. The pseudotachylytes transect lithologies ranging from peridotite to anorthosite and consequently the influence of the seismic energy release on a range of granulite facies minerals including garnet, pyroxenes, olivine, plagioclase, hornblende and scapolite can be observed. The seismic energy released promotes the Caledonian metamorphism and change the petrophysical properties of the lower crust in the following ways: The melting and the ultracommunition of the granulite facies minerals increased the reactive surface area and produce local pathways for fluid. S-rich scapolite, a common mineral in granulities play a key role in this process by releasing S and C to form sulfides and carbonates. Small sulfide grains impregnate the pseudotachylyte veins which may lead to an increased electrical conductivity of the deep crust. The pseudotachylyte veins impose inhomogeneities in the massive rocks through grain size reduction and lead to strain localization with development of amphibolite and eclogite facies shear zones. Formation of eclogite facies breccias where meter size blocks of rotated granulites are enclosed in eclogite may have initiated by the seismic events as indicated by fractures in the relict granulite facies garnet. The seismic events may have been important in large scale transport of fluid required to bring about the metamorphism of the dry granulite facies complex.

  3. Abrupt Change in Convergence Rate as a Mechanism to Induce Extension in Highly Coupled Subduction Zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Contreras, J.

    2009-05-01

    I here present model results that bring into light a new mechanism for continental extension in convergent margins. The model is motivated by observations in the Trans-Mexican volcanic belt, a volcanic arc built above the Middle America subduction zone, that apparently contradict the current understanding of the dynamics of subduction zones. This volcanic arc is dissected along its axis by several arrays of active normal faults with a combined length of 450 km and up to 1.5 km of throw. Previous observations worldwide indicate that continental extension in convergent margins takes place where (i) the upper plate moves away from the trench, and (ii) the subduction zone is only weakly coupled. In western Mexico, neither of these phenomena is observed; North America moves toward the trench and the subduction zone is fully coupled. Moreover, extension is usually observed in the backarc, in Mexico is intra-arc. The model shows that in the case the oceanic slab sinks into the mantle at a steep angle, periods of rapid subduction lead to an increase of suction force under the forearc. This causes the over-riding plate to bend downward building up tensional stress inside the continent, 150-250 km away from the trench, resulting in failure of the associated volcanic arc.

  4. Satellite magnetic anomalies over subduction zones - The Aleutian Arc anomaly

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Clark, S. C.; Frey, H.; Thomas, H. H.

    1985-01-01

    Positive magnetic anomalies seen in MAGSAT average scalar anomaly data overlying some subduction zones can be explained in terms of the magnetization contrast between the cold subducted oceanic slab and the surrounding hotter, nonmagnetic mantle. Three-dimensional modeling studies show that peak anomaly amplitude and location depend on slab length and dip. A model for the Aleutian Arc anomaly matches the general trend of the observed MAGSAT anomaly if a slab thickness of 7 km and a relatively high (induced plus viscous) magnetization contrast of 4 A/m are used. A second source body along the present day continental margin is required to match the observed anomaly in detail, and may be modeled as a relic slab from subduction prior to 60 m.y. ago.

  5. The fate of the downgoing oceanic plate: Insight from the Northern Cascadia subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Piana Agostinetti, Nicola; Miller, Meghan S.

    2014-12-01

    In this study, we use teleseismic receiver function analysis to image the seismic structure of the Juan de Fuca oceanic plate during its subduction beneath the North American plate. Seismic data have been recorded at 58 seismic stations deployed along the northern Cascadia subduction zone. Harmonic decomposition of the receiver function data-set along a trench-normal profile allows us to image both the isotropic and the anisotropic structure of the plate (slab). Our images highlight the presence of a highly anisotropic region at 40-70 km depths across the Cascadia subduction zone. The detected seismic anisotropy is interpreted to be related to both metamorphic facies (e.g. blueschists) and fluid released during the dehydration of the subducting mantle. The processes of dehydration and metamorphism produce the variations of the seismic properties within each lithologic unit that constitutes the subducted slab, i.e. basalts, gabbro layer and upper mantle, as the oceanic plate sinks in the upper mantle. Such variations make it almost impossible to recognize the “plate boundary” as a characteristic “velocity-jump” at depth (neither positive nor negative) along the Cascadia subduction zone. Based on the comparative interpretation of both the isotropic and the anisotropic structures retrieved, we propose a 4-stage model of the evolution of the Juan de Fuca oceanic plate during its subduction beneath the North American plate.

  6. Opening and closing slab windows in congested subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moresi, Louis

    2013-04-01

    Subduction zones often try to swallow buoyant material which is embedded in the oceanic lithosphere: plume material or hotspot residues, oceanic plateaux, and fragments of continental material. This often results in the formation of a slab window and it has been shown (Mason et al, 2010; Betts et al, 2012) that this window strongly influences the subsequent evolution of the slab and the advance/retreat rate of the trench. The buoyant material typically pushes the trench into a local state of advance, and the creation of the slab window allows the rest of the trench to retreat as the mantle behind the slab flows in through the window. This situation is inherently unstable: if the buoyancy anomaly is finite in size, then the retreating trench will soon move behind the anomaly and juxtapose negatively buoyant oceanic lithosphere with active subduction. This creates the potential to close the slab window and, in doing so, transfer the buoyant material to the over-riding plate. Models show that this closure of the window initially occurs through a lateral rollback process followed by a catastrophic re-initiation of subduction behind the colliding buoyant anomaly. This rollback leaves a characteristic, tightly rolled remnant in the mantle and significant rotation in the over-riding plate and the newly-docked block. The over-riding plate is thrown into extension perpendicular to the original orientation of the trench. This same situation applies at the late-stages of a closing ocean due to the passive margin geometry and the presence of debris collected from the closing ocean floor and it seems likely that these models can also be applied to the complicated geometry of subduction in such environments. Mason, W. G.; Moresi, L.; Betts, P. G. & Miller, M. S. Three-dimensional numerical models of the influence of a buoyant oceanic plateau on subduction zones Tectonophysics, 2010, 483, 71-79 P. Betts, W. Mason, L. Moresi, The influence of mantle plumes on subduction zone dynamics, Geology, 40, 739-742 (2012)

  7. 3-D Seismic Refraction Tomography in Sumatra Subduction Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tang, G.; Barton, P.; Dean, S.; Vermeesch, P.; Jusuf, M. D.; Henstock, T.; Djajadihardja, Y. S.; McNeill, L.; Permana, H.; Party, S. S.

    2008-12-01

    A seismic refraction survey was conducted as part of the major UK and international project to image the 3-D structures and the seismic velocity of the Sumatra subduction zone. The 3-D seismic refraction tomography mainly focusses on the two segment boundaries identified by the earthquake ruptures in 2004 and 2005. High quality seismic datasets (refraction, reflection, gravity and magnetics) were collected in the two survey areas on the vessel R/V Sonne in 2008. The northern area, around the island of Simeulue, is about 196 km long and 185 km wide. 50 Ocean Bottom Seismometers (OBS) were deployed in this area, and 10462 air-gun shots were fired along 1550 km of profiles. 47 OBSs were then installed near the island of Nias, in an area of 246 km long and 180 km wide, and 9134 shots were fired on 1408 km of profiles. During the OBS deployment, air-gun shooting, and OBS recovery, high resolution swathe bathymetry data were recorded, and XBT data were collected in each OBS deployment location. Gravity data were also recorded during the whole survey and magnetics data collected during the air-gun shooting. The 3-D refraction tomography successfully sampled the two survey areas. Refractions from the oceanic and continental crust are clear and easy to pick, and refractions from the mantle lithosphere are also visible at some locations at an offset up to 150 km, which enables us to image the deeper structures of the Sumatra subduction zone. A tomographic inversion program JIVE-3D (Hobro et al. 2003) will be applied to the refraction/reflection travel times to invert them into a minimum-structure velocity model. The high resolution bathymetry will be smoothed and put into the model as a known interface. The XBT data will be used to calibrate the acoustic velocity in the water. During the shooting period, several earthquakes of magnitude 5.0 and above occurred near the survey area, which also provide extra information for the inversion. The well resolved 3-D structure models obtained will give insight into the possible rupture barriers causing the observed segmentation of the subduction zone.

  8. Acceleration spectra for subduction zone earthquakes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Boatwright, J.; Choy, G.L.

    1989-01-01

    We estimate the source spectra of shallow earthquakes from digital recordings of teleseismic P wave groups, that is, P+pP+sP, by making frequency dependent corrections for the attenuation and for the interference of the free surface. The correction for the interference of the free surface assumes that the earthquake radiates energy from a range of depths. We apply this spectral analysis to a set of 12 subduction zone earthquakes which range in size from Ms = 6.2 to 8.1, obtaining corrected P wave acceleration spectra on the frequency band from 0.01 to 2.0 Hz. Seismic moment estimates from surface waves and normal modes are used to extend these P wave spectra to the frequency band from 0.001 to 0.01 Hz. The acceleration spectra of large subduction zone earthquakes, that is, earthquakes whose seismic moments are greater than 1027 dyn cm, exhibit intermediate slopes where u(w)???w5/4 for frequencies from 0.005 to 0.05 Hz. For these earthquakes, spectral shape appears to be a discontinuous function of seismic moment. Using reasonable assumptions for the phase characteristics, we transform the spectral shape observed for large earthquakes into the time domain to fit Ekstrom's (1987) moment rate functions for the Ms=8.1 Michoacan earthquake of September 19, 1985, and the Ms=7.6 Michoacan aftershock of September 21, 1985. -from Authors

  9. Overriding Plate Controls on Subduction Zone Evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharples, W. K.; Jadamec, M. A.; Moresi, L. N.; Capitanio, F. A.

    2014-12-01

    Seismic data, rock deformation experiments, and geochemical studies indicate variability in the thickness, buoyancy, and strength of the lithosphere at plate boundaries. However, geodynamic models of subduction commonly either omit an overriding plate or do not investigate role of the variation in overriding plate properties on the subduction evolution. We present time-dependent numerical models of subduction that vary the overriding plate thickness, strength, and density and allow for a plate interface that evolves with time via an anisotropic brittle failure rheology. We examine the emergence of (a) asymmetric versus symmetric subduction, (b) trench retreat versus advance, (c) subduction zone geometry, (d) slab stagnation versus penetration into the lower mantle, and (e) flat slab subduction. The majority of the models result in sustained asymmetric subduction. The models demonstrate that trench retreat is correlated with a thin overriding plate, whereas, trench advance is correlated with a thick and/or strong overriding plate. Slab dip, measured at a depth below the plate boundary interface, has a negative correlation with an increase in overriding plate thickness. Overriding plate thickness exerts a first order control over slab penetration into the lower mantle, with penetration most commonly occurring in models with a thick overriding plate. Periods of flat slab subduction occur with thick, strong overriding plates producing strong plate boundary interface coupling. The results provide insight into how the overriding plate plays a role in establishing advancing and retreating subduction, as well as providing an explanation for the variation of slab geometry observed in subduction zones on Earth.

  10. Cyclic stressing and seismicity at strongly coupled subduction zones

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Taylor, M.A.J.; Zheng, G.; Rice, J.R.; Stuart, W.D.; Dmowska, R.

    1996-01-01

    We use the finite element method to analyze stress variations in and near a strongly coupled subduction zone during an earthquake cycle. Deformation is assumed to be uniform along strike (plane strain on a cross section normal to the trench axis), and periodic earthquake slip is imposed consistent with the long-term rate of plate convergence and degree of coupling. Simulations of stress and displacement rate fields represent periodic fluctuations in time superimposed on an average field. The oceanic plate, descending slab, and continental lithosphere are assumed here to respond elastically to these fluctuations, and the remaining mantle under and between plates is assumed to respond as Maxwell viscoelastic. In the first part of the analysis we find that computed stress fluctuations in space and time are generally consistent with observed earthquake mechanism variations with time since a great thrust event. In particular, trench-normal extensional earthquakes tend to occur early in the earthquake cycle toward the outer rise but occur more abundantly late in the cycle in the subducting slab downdip of the main thrust zone. Compressional earthquakes, when they occur at all, have the opposite pattern. Our results suggest also that the actual timing of extensional outer rise events is controlled by the rheology of the shallow aseismic portion of the thrust interface. The second part of the analysis shows the effects of mantle relaxation on the rate of ground surface deformation during the earthquake cycle. Models without relaxation predict a strong overall compressional strain rate in the continental plate above the main thrust zone, with the strain rate constant between mainshocks. However with significant relaxation present, a localized region of unusually low compressional, or even slightly extensional, strain rate develops along the surface of the continental plate above and somewhat inland from the downdip edge of the locked main thrust zone. The low strain rate starts in the middle or late part of the cycle, depending on position. This result suggests that the negligible or small contraction measured on the Shumagin Islands, Alaska, during 1980 to 1991, may not invalidate an interpretation of that region as being a moderately coupled subduction zone. In contrast, mantle relaxation causes only modest temporal nonuniformity of uplift rates in the overriding plate and of extensional stress rates in the subducting plate, even when the Maxwell time is an order of magnitude less than the recurrence interval.

  11. The earthquake cycle in subduction zones

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Melosh, H. J.; Fleitout, L.

    1982-01-01

    A simplified model of a subduction zone is presented, which incorporates the mechanical asymmetry induced by the subducted slab to anchor the subducting plate during post-seismic rebound and thus throw most of the coseismic stream release into the overthrust plate. The model predicts that the trench moves with respect to the deep mantle toward the subducting plate at a velocity equal to one-half of the convergence rate. A strong extensional pulse is propagated into the overthrust plate shortly after the earthquake, and although this extension changes into compression before the next earthquake in the cycle, the period of strong extension following the earthquake may be responsible for extensional tectonic features in the back-arc region.

  12. Mechanism of décollement formation in subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hori, Takane; Sakaguchi, Hide

    2011-12-01

    The mechanism of décollement formation was investigated through a particle-based simulation model assuming homogeneity (e.g. no weak layer or pore fluid). A décollement-like structure appeared as a spontaneously localized shear deformation near the bottom of the sediment when the thickness of the sediment was sufficient to balance the gravitational force and tectonic loading. In contrast, no such décollement-like structure was formed when the sediment was too thin; in this case, the entire prism was deformed because of plate motion. These results are consistent with various observations in real subduction zones. A precise analysis of the stress state evolution during accretion reveals that the formation of a décollement-like structure is controlled by the spatio-temporal distribution of isotropic compression states.

  13. Mid mantle seismic anisotropy around subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Faccenda, M.

    2014-02-01

    There is increasing evidence for mid mantle seismic anisotropy around subduction zones whose interpretation remains elusive. In this study I estimate the strain-induced mid mantle fabric and associated seismic anisotropy developing in 3D petrological-thermo-mechanical subduction models where the slab is either stagnating over the 660 km discontinuity or penetrating into the lower mantle. The modelling of synthetic lattice-preferred-orientation (LPO) development of wadsleyite and perovskite has been calibrated with results from deformational experiments and ab-initio atomic scale models, and the single crystal elastic tensor of the different mineral phases is scaled by local P-T conditions. The lower transition zone (ringwoodite + garnet) is assumed to be isotropic. Mid mantle fabric develops in proximity of the subducting slab where deformation and stresses are high, except at depths where upwelling or downwelling material undergoes phase transformations, yielding to LPO reset. The upper transition zone (wadsleyite + garnet) is characterized by weak transverse isotropy (2-3%) with symmetry axes oriented and fast S wave polarized dip-normal. A slightly stronger transverse isotropy develops in the lower mantle (perovskite + periclase), where the symmetry axes, the polarization of the fast S wave and the maximum Vp and dVs are parallel to the slab dip and subduction direction. For stagnating slab models this translates into negative and positive radial anisotropy in the upper transition zone and lower mantle back-arc, respectively, minimum delay times for vertically travelling shear waves and large shear wave splitting for waves propagating horizontally in the lower mantle. These results may help in reconciling the seismic anisotropy patterns observed in some subduction zones with subduction-induced deformation, such as those measured in the mid mantle between the Australian plate and the New Hebrides-Tonga-Kermadec trenches that I interpret as related to stagnating portions of the subducted Pacific plate.

  14. Experimental study of boron geochemistry: implications for fluid processes in subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    You, C. F.; Spivack, A. J.; Gieskes, J. M.; Rosenbauer, R.; Bischoff, J. L.

    1995-06-01

    A comprehensive experimental study, utilizing an autoclave hydrothermal apparatus with a 10B isotopic tracer, has been conducted to monitor the geochemical behavior of sediment B during early subduction zone processes. The partition coefficient of exchangeable B ( K D) was determined over a temperature range of 25-350°C, at 800 bars and a water/rock ratio of 3-1.5 w/w. These K D are shown to be a complex function of temperature, pH, and possibly mineralogy. At low temperatures, K D is significantly high at ˜4 in contrast to the value of essentially zero at temperatures higher than ˜100°C. A K D of zero represents no B adsorption, implying efficient mobilization of exchangeable B at shallow depths during sediment subduction. Our experimental results demonstrate high mobilization of bulk B in sediments (both exchangeable and lattice bound) at elevated temperatures (200-350°C), in good agreement with previous observations of B in metasediments indicating progressive depletion during metamorphism. In addition, this study emphasizes the importance of a possible water/rock ratio dependence of B mobilization. In other words, the degree of sedimentary B mobilization in subduction zones strongly depends on the local thermal structure and porosity distribution. In low geothermal gradient areas, large amounts of porewater are expelled before significant B mobilization has occurred, so that some sedimentary B will survive and get into the deeper parts of the subduction zone. Our results imply that efficient mobilization of B from the subducted slab must occur and that arc magmatism recycles most of the remaining subducted B back to surface reservoirs. A reconsideration of the B budget in subduction zones provides critical information with respect to B sources and sinks in the ocean.

  15. Tomography and Dynamics of Western-Pacific Subduction Zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, D.

    2012-01-01

    We review the significant recent results of multiscale seismic tomography of the Western-Pacific subduction zones and discuss their implications for seismotectonics, magmatism, and subduction dynamics, with an emphasis on the Japan Islands. Many important new findings are obtained due to technical advances in tomography, such as the handling of complex-shaped velocity discontinuities, the use of various later phases, the joint inversion of local and teleseismic data, tomographic imaging outside a seismic network, and P-wave anisotropy tomography. Prominent low-velocity (low-V) and high-attenuation (low-Q) zones are revealed in the crust and uppermost mantle beneath active arc and back-arc volcanoes and they extend to the deeper portion of the mantle wedge, indicating that the low-V/low-Q zones form the sources of arc magmatism and volcanism, and the arc magmatic system is related to deep processes such as convective circulation in the mantle wedge and dehydration reactions in the subducting slab. Seismic anisotropy seems to exist in all portions of the Northeast Japan subduction zone, including the upper and lower crust, the mantle wedge and the subducting Pacific slab. Multilayer anisotropies with different orientations may have caused the apparently weak shear-wave splitting observed so far, whereas recent results show a greater effect of crustal anisotropy than previously thought. Deep subduction of the Philippine Sea slab and deep dehydration of the Pacific slab are revealed beneath Southwest Japan. Significant structural heterogeneities are imaged in the source areas of large earthquakes in the crust, subducting slab and interplate megathrust zone, which may reflect fluids and/or magma originating from slab dehydration that affected the rupture nucleation of large earthquakes. These results suggest that large earthquakes do not strike anywhere, but in only anomalous areas that may be detected with geophysical methods. The occurrence of deep earthquakes under the Japan Sea and the East Asia margin may be related to a metastable olivine wedge in the subducting Pacific slab. The Pacific slab becomes stagnant in the mantle transition zone under East Asia, and a big mantle wedge (BMW) has formed above the stagnant slab. Convective circulations and fluid and magmatic processes in the BMW may have caused intraplate volcanism (e.g., Changbai and Wudalianchi), reactivation of the North China craton, large earthquakes, and other active tectonics in East Asia. Deep subduction and dehydration of continental plates (such as the Eurasian plate, Indian plate and Burma microplate) are also found, which have caused intraplate magmatism (e.g., Tengchong) and geothermal anomalies above the subducted continental plates. Under Kamchatka, the subducting Pacific slab shortens toward the north and terminates near the Aleutian-Kamchatka junction. The slab loss was induced by friction with the surrounding asthenosphere, as the Pacific plate rotated clockwise 30 Ma ago, and then it was enlarged by the slab-edge pinch-off by the asthenospheric flow. The stagnant slab finally collapses down to the bottom of the mantle, which may trigger upwelling of hot mantle materials from the lower mantle to the shallow mantle. Suggestions are also made for future directions of the seismological research of subduction zones.

  16. Detachment and/or exhumation depth clusters in subduction zones? Highlights from W. Turkey and comparison with Oman, Corsica and New Caledonia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Plunder, Alexis; Agard, Philippe; Chopin, Christian

    2014-05-01

    Recent studies have shown that exhumation of rocks is a fundamentally discontinuous process acting over short-lived time periods (~10 My) during the 'life' of a subduction zone. Recent advances in analytical techniques and in estimating P-T conditions now allow petrologists to attempt characterizing the subduction interface itself and better understanding the mechanisms that enable rocks to detach from the downgoing slab. Important clues would be provided by answering such questions as: (i) Is it the exhumation and/or the detachment preluding to exhumation that is rather a continuous process? (ii) Do the rocks primarily originate from specific depths (thereby pointing to particular conditions of mechanical coupling there) or from all along the subduction interface? Obduction (i.e., emplacement of oceanic lithosphere atop continents) and associated subduction processes provide insight into mechanical coupling at the plate interface, the rheology of the lithosphere and fossilize the different steps of an evolving subduction zone. Field-based data and petrological study in western Turkey are here used to highlight processes acting in a cooling subduction zone during both oceanic and continental subduction and are then compared with other similar geodynamic settings. In western Turkey, the Tav?anl? zone is made of oceanic lithosphere and of a thinned continental margin sequentially subducted below an oceanic plate during the Late Cretaceous. It represents an exceptionally well-preserved subduction interface thanks to later mild collision between the Anatolide-Tauride block and Eurasia. The Tav?anl? zone is divided into three major tectonic units from top to bottom: the obducted ophiolite, an accretionary complex and the continental margin. Among these three main tectonic units, two related either to oceanic or continental subduction consist of HP-LT metamorphic units that are: (i) the oceanic accretionary complex, subdivided in three tectonic units (namely complex 1, 2 and 3 from top to bottom) with different PT conditions (200°C and < 8kbar; 300°C and 12 kbar; 450°C and 17 kbar, respectively); (ii) the cover of the continental margin, which yielded eclogite-facies conditions of 500°C and 24 kbar. Comparisons with similar geodynamic settings (i.e. oceanic then continental subduction without collision: Oman, New Caledonia and Corsica) allow us to point out very similar maximum burial depths for each of those units sharing an equivalent structural position. In each setting up to three clusters of HP-LT conditions might be recognizable, chiefly at 300°C-12 kbar and 500°C-23kbar, and possibly at 450°C-17 kbar too. Those PT conditions show that slicing of kilometre-scale units occurs at fairly specific depths along the subduction interface. We finally tentatively relate these observations to the different seismic events documented in present-day subduction zones along the plate interface.

  17. Dehydration-driven topotaxy in subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Padrón-Navarta, José Alberto; Tommasi, Andréa; Garrido, Carlos J.

    2014-05-01

    Mineral replacement reactions play a fundamental role in the chemistry and the strength of the lithosphere. When externally or internally derived fluids are present, interface-coupled dissolution-precipitation is the driving mechanism for such reactions [1]. One of the microstructural features of this process is a 3D arrangement of crystallographic axes across internal interfaces (topotaxy) between reactant and product phases. Dehydration reactions are a special case of mineral replacement reaction that generates a transient fluid-filled porosity. Among others, the dehydration serpentinite is of special relevance in subduction zones because of the amount of fluids involved (potentially up to 13 wt.%). Two topotatic relationships between olivine and antigorite (the serpentine mineral stable at high temperature and pressure) have been reported in partially hydrated mantle wedge xenoliths [2]. Therefore, if precursor antigorite serpentine has a strong crystallographic preferred orientation (CPO) its dehydration might result in prograde peridotite with a strong inherited CPO. However for predicting the importance of topotactic reactions for seismic anisotropy of subduction zones we also need to consider the crystallization orthopyroxene + chlorite in the prograde reaction and, more importantly, the fact that this dehydration reaction produces a transient porosity of ca. 20 % vol. that results in local fluctuations of strain during compaction and fluid migration. We address this issue by a microstructural comparison between the CPO developed in olivine, orthopyroxene and chlorite during high-pressure antigorite dehydration in piston cylinder experiments (at 750ºC and 20 kbar and 1000ºC and 30 kbar, 168 h) and that recorded in natural samples (Cerro del Almirez, Betic Cordillera, Spain). Experimentally developed CPOs are strong. Prograde minerals show a significant inheritance of the former antigorite foliation. Topotactic relations are dominated by (001)atg//(100)ol// (100)opx//(001)chl. The relation [010]atg// [001]ol //[001]opx can also be inferred but it is weaker. Similar topotactic relations are observed in the Cerro del Almirez samples, but the CPOs are weaker and more complex. The complexity arises from constant interfacial angles and systematic low-index interfacial contacts between orthopyroxene-olivine-chlorite (e.g. (001)chl // (100)opx). As a consequence the inheritance from the antigorite serpentinite is partially obliterated. Compaction-related microstructural features are also present including: (1) smooth bending of the former foliation and diffuse olivine veinlets perpendicular to it, (2) gradual crystallographic misorientation (up to 15º) of prismatic enstatite due to buckling, (3) localized orthoenstatite(Pbca)/low clinoenstatite (P21/c) inversion, and (4) brittle fracturing of prismatic enstatite wrapped by plastically deformed chlorite. These observations suggest that topotactic crystrallographic relations are dominant in undrained systems, but that the mechanisms allowing for compaction and fluid draining significantly affect the final texture in drained systems. Because the second case prevails in subduction zones, compaction mechanisms need to be better understood for modelling the development of CPOs after foliated protoliths in the slab and the mantle wedge. [1] Putnis, A., 2009. Reviews in Mineralogy and Geochemistry 70, 87-124. [2] Boudier, F., et al. 2010 J. Petrology 51, 495-512.

  18. Metamorphic belts of Anatolia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oberhänsli, Roland; Prouteau, Amaury; Candan, Osman; Bousquet, Romain

    2015-04-01

    Investigating metamorphic rocks from high-pressure/low-temperature (HP/LT) belts that formed during the closure of several oceanic branches, building up the present Anatolia continental micro-plate gives insight to the palaeogeography of the Neotethys Ocean in Anatolia. Two coherent HP/LT metamorphic belts, the Tav?anl? Zone (distal Gondwana margin) and the Ören-Afyon-Bolkarda? Zone (proximal Gondwana margin), parallel their non-metamorphosed equivalent (the Tauride Carbonate Platform) from the Aegean coast in NW Anatolia to southern Central Anatolia. P-T conditions and timing of metamorphism in the Ören-Afyon-Bolkarda? Zone (>70?-65 Ma; 0.8-1.2 GPa/330-420°C) contrast those published for the overlying Tav?anl? Zone (88-78 Ma; 2.4 GPa/500 °C). These belts trace the southern Neotethys suture connecting the Vardar suture in the Hellenides to the Inner Tauride suture along the southern border of the Kir?ehir Complex in Central Anatolia. Eastwards, these belts are capped by the Oligo-Miocene Sivas Basin. Another HP/LT metamorphic belt, in the Alanya and Bitlis regions, outlines the southern flank of the Tauride Carbonate Platform. In the Alanya Nappes, south of the Taurides, eclogites and blueschists yielded metamorphic ages around 82-80 Ma (zircon U-Pb and phengite Ar-Ar data). The Alanya-Bitlis HP belt testifies an additional suture not comparable to the northerly Tav?anl? and Ören-Afyon belts, thus implying an additional oceanic branch of the Neotethys. The most likely eastern lateral continuation of this HP belt is the Bitlis Massif, in SE Turkey. There, eclogites (1.9-2.4 GPa/480-540°C) occur within calc-arenitic meta-sediments and in gneisses of the metamorphic (Barrovian-type) basement. Zircon U-Pb ages revealed 84.4-82.4 Ma for peak metamorphism. Carpholite-bearing HP/LT metasediments representing the stratigraphic cover of the Bitlis Massif underwent 0.8-1.2 GPa/340-400°C at 79-74 Ma (Ar-Ar on white mica). These conditions compares to the Tav?anl?-Afyon realm. However the differences in time and P-T conditions (eclogite- vs. blueschist-facies units) in the Bitlis Massif indicate that the different metamorphic peak conditions were reached at different times in a single subduction zone. Exhumation from approx. 65 to 35 km depth occurred within <10 myr. The special relations between eclogite-blueschist are due to the fact that collision with the Arabian plate was and still is on going in the Bitlis area. The Bitlis HP rocks represent a subduction realm that separated the Bitlis-Pütürge(-Bistun?) continental block from the South-Armenian (Tauride?) block, further north. Post-Eocene blueschists south of the Bitlis Massif witness the separation of the Bitlis-Pütüre block from the Arabian plate, and the southward migration of the subduction zone from the Late Cretaceous to the Oligocene. Continuous convergence of Africa and Eurasia engendered the simultaneous consumption of several, separated branches of the Neotethys Ocean and amalgamation of different terranes. The rise of the Eastern Anatolia Plateau is related to this complex geodynamic setting. Reduced seismic velocities inferred from geophysical observations, which are interpreted as complete replacement of lithospheric- by asthenospheric mantle, can be explained by thermodynamic modelling as partial hydration of the lithospheric mantle wedge during protracted subduction. Hydrated lithospheric mantle is interpreted as result of the complex geodynamic setting in Anatolia with multiple simultaneous subduction zones.

  19. Accessory minerals and subduction zone metasomatism: a geochemical comparison of two mélanges (Washington and California, U.S.A.)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sorensen, Sorena S.; Grossman, Jeffrey N.

    1993-01-01

    Data from the Gee Point and Catalina mélanges suggest that the accessory minerals titanite, rutile, apatite, zircon and REE-rich epidote play a significant role in the enrichment of trace elements in both mafic and ultramafic rocks during subduction-related fluid-rock interaction. Mobilization of incompatible elements, and deposition of such elements in the accessory minerals of mafic and ultramafic rocks may be fairly common in fluid-rich metamorphic environments in subduction zones.

  20. Subduction zone earthquake probably triggered submarine hydrocarbon seepage offshore Pakistan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fischer, David; José M., Mogollón; Michael, Strasser; Thomas, Pape; Gerhard, Bohrmann; Noemi, Fekete; Volkhard, Spiess; Sabine, Kasten

    2014-05-01

    Seepage of methane-dominated hydrocarbons is heterogeneous in space and time, and trigger mechanisms of episodic seep events are not well constrained. It is generally found that free hydrocarbon gas entering the local gas hydrate stability field in marine sediments is sequestered in gas hydrates. In this manner, gas hydrates can act as a buffer for carbon transport from the sediment into the ocean. However, the efficiency of gas hydrate-bearing sediments for retaining hydrocarbons may be corrupted: Hypothesized mechanisms include critical gas/fluid pressures beneath gas hydrate-bearing sediments, implying that these are susceptible to mechanical failure and subsequent gas release. Although gas hydrates often occur in seismically active regions, e.g., subduction zones, the role of earthquakes as potential triggers of hydrocarbon transport through gas hydrate-bearing sediments has hardly been explored. Based on a recent publication (Fischer et al., 2013), we present geochemical and transport/reaction-modelling data suggesting a substantial increase in upward gas flux and hydrocarbon emission into the water column following a major earthquake that occurred near the study sites in 1945. Calculating the formation time of authigenic barite enrichments identified in two sediment cores obtained from an anticlinal structure called "Nascent Ridge", we find they formed 38-91 years before sampling, which corresponds well to the time elapsed since the earthquake (62 years). Furthermore, applying a numerical model, we show that the local sulfate/methane transition zone shifted upward by several meters due to the increased methane flux and simulated sulfate profiles very closely match measured ones in a comparable time frame of 50-70 years. We thus propose a causal relation between the earthquake and the amplified gas flux and present reflection seismic data supporting our hypothesis that co-seismic ground shaking induced mechanical fracturing of gas hydrate-bearing sediments creating pathways for free gas to migrate from a shallow reservoir within the gas hydrate stability zone into the water column. Our results imply that free hydrocarbon gas trapped beneath a local gas hydrate seal was mobilized through earthquake-induced mechanical failure and in that way circumvented carbon sequestration within the sediment. These findings lead to conclude that hydrocarbon seepage triggered by earthquakes can play a role for carbon budgets at other seismically active continental margins. The newly identified process presented in our study is conceivable to help interpret data from similar sites. Reference: Fischer, D., Mogollon, J.M., Strasser, M., Pape, T., Bohrmann, G., Fekete, N., Spieß, V. and Kasten, S., 2013. Subduction zone earthquake as potential trigger of submarine hydrocarbon seepage. Nature Geoscience 6: 647-651.

  1. Lithospheric dynamics of Earth's subduction zones and Martian tectonic provinces

    E-print Network

    Ding, Min, Ph. D. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

    2015-01-01

    This thesis investigates lithospheric dynamics of Earth's subduction zones and Martian tectonic provinces on multiple time scales ranging from short-term earthquake deformation to long-term tectonic loading. In Chapter 2, ...

  2. Controls on earthquake rupture and triggering mechanisms in subduction zones

    E-print Network

    Llenos, Andrea Lesley

    2010-01-01

    Large earthquake rupture and triggering mechanisms that drive seismicity in subduction zones are investigated in this thesis using a combination of earthquake observations, statistical and physical modeling. A comparison ...

  3. Earthquake Production by Subduction Zones is Not Linear in Relative Plate Velocity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bird, P.; Kagan, Y. Y.; Jackson, D. D.; Schoenberg, F. P.; Werner, M. J.

    2007-12-01

    The ratio of \\{long-term-average seismic moment production per unit length of plate boundary\\} to \\{relative plate velocity\\} is determined by the "coupled thickness" of seismogenic lithosphere, and also by elastic moduli and geometric factors that are fairly well known. It is generally assumed that coupled thickness is constant within a given class of plate boundary, such as Bird's [2003, G3]: CCB Continental Convergent Boundary, CRB Continental Rift Boundary, CTF Continental Transform Fault, OCB Oceanic Convergent Boundary, OSR Oceanic Spreading Ridge, OTF Oceanic Transform Fault, or SUB Subduction zone. However, Bird et al. [2002, Geodyn. Ser.] and Bird & Kagan [2004, BSSA] found two exceptions: OSR and OTF both have greater coupled thickness at low relative plate velocities. We test for variation of coupled thickness with relative plate velocity in each of the 7 classes of plate boundary. We use shallow (<70 km) earthquakes from the Harvard CMT catalog, 1982.01.01-2007.03.31, above magnitude MW threshold of 5.51 or 5.66. In order to reduce the influence of aftershock swarms, we estimate the probability of independence of each earthquake according to the likelihood stochastic declustering method of Kagan & Jackson [1991; GJI] and use this as a weight. We use the algorithm of Bird & Kagan [2004, BSSA] to assign 95% of shallow earthquakes to plate boundary steps and plate boundary classes, rejecting all earthquakes that fall into one of the 13 orogens of Bird [2003, G3]. We order the plate-boundary steps outside orogens in each class by relative plate velocity according to the PB2002 model of Bird [2003]. Then, we plot cumulative earthquake count as a function of cumulative model tectonic moment (assuming constant coupled thickness and other parameters within each plate boundary class). The null hypothesis is a linear relation; we use 2 measures (Kolmogorov-Smirnov, and Cramer-von Mises) to quantify departures from this line. We use 10,000 simulations of each class with random Poissonian seismicity in each plate boundary step (with expectations based on the tectonic model) to assess the significance of the measures obtained. Subduction zones have velocity-dependent coupled thickness: P < 0.001 for the null hypothesis. Subduction zones with relative plate velocity <67 mm/a (which would comprise 35% of the model tectonic moment rate, in the null hypothesis) actually produce only 20% of the global subduction zone earthquakes (outside orogens), and thus have a coupled thickness about half that of faster subduction zones (if corner magnitude and spectral slope are constant). This result contradicts the uniform coupling of subduction zones inferred by Kreemer et al. [2002, Geodyn. Ser.]; the difference may be due to their exclusion of several slow subduction zones including Aegean, Cascadia, New Zealand, Caribbean, and South Shetland. Continental CCBs show a similarly strong relation (P < 0.001), with an increase in coupled thickness when velocity exceeds 25 mm/a. OSRs show coupled thickness declining with velocity, as in previous studies. OTFs and OCBs give complex results with significant variations (P < 0.01; P < 0.05) that are not easy to interpret. For CRBs and CTFs we do not reject the null hypothesis of constant coupled thickness.

  4. Crust and subduction zone structure of Southwestern Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Suhardja, Sandy Kurniawan; Grand, Stephen P.; Wilson, David; Guzman-Speziale, Marco; Gomez-Gonzalez, Juan Martin; Dominguez-Reyes, Tonatiuh; Ni, James

    2015-02-01

    Southwestern Mexico is a region of complex active tectonics with subduction of the young Rivera and Cocos plates to the south and widespread magmatism and rifting in the continental interior. Here we use receiver function analysis on data recorded by a 50 station temporary deployment of seismometers known as the MARS (MApping the Rivera Subduction zone) array to investigate crustal structure as well as the nature of the subduction interface near the coast. The array was deployed in the Mexican states of Jalisco, Colima, and Michoacan. Crustal thickness varies from 20 km near the coast to 42 km in the continental interior. The Rivera plate has steeper dip than the Cocos plate and is also deeper along the coast than previous estimates have shown. Inland, there is not a correlation between the thickness of the crust and topography indicating that the high topography in northern Jalisco and Michoacan is likely supported by buoyant mantle. High crustal Vp/Vs ratios (greater than 1.82) are found beneath the trenchward edge of magmatism including below the Central Jalisco Volcanic Lineament and the Michoacan-Guanajuato Volcanic Field implying a new arc is forming closer to the trench than the Trans Mexican Volcanic Belt. Elsewhere in the region, crustal Vp/Vs ratios are normal. The subducting Rivera and Cocos plates are marked by a dipping shear wave low-velocity layer. We estimate the thickness of the low-velocity layer to be 3 to 4 km with an unusually high Vp/Vs ratio of 2.0 to 2.1 and a drop in S velocity of 25%. We postulate that the low-velocity zone is the upper oceanic crust with high pore pressures. The low-velocity zone ends from 45 to 50 km depth and likely marks the basalt to eclogite transition.

  5. The Sulfur Cycle at Subduction Zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Moor, M. J.; Fischer, T. P.; Sharp, Z. D.

    2013-12-01

    We present sulfur (S) isotope data for magmatic gases emitted along the Central American (CA) Arc (oxidizing conditions ?QFM ~+ 1.5) and at the East African Rift (reduced conditions ?QFM ~0). The results are interpreted through mass balance calculations to characterize the S cycle through subduction zones with implications for the redox conditions of arc magmas. Voluminous gas emissions from Masaya, an open vent basaltic volcano in Nicaragua, represent >20% of the SO2 flux from the CA arc [1]. Samples from the Masaya plume have S isotope compositions of + 4.8 × 0.4 ‰ [2]. Degassing fractionation modeling and assessment of differentiation processes in this oxidized volcano suggest that this value is close to that of the source composition. High T gas samples from other CA volcanoes (Momotombo, Cerro Negro, Poas, Turrialba) range from + 3 ‰ (Cerro Negro) to + 7 ‰ (Poas; [3]). The high ?34S values are attributed to recycling of subducted oxidized sulfur (sulfate ~ + 20 ‰) through the CA arc. The ?34S values of the more reduced samples from East African Rift volcanoes, Erta Ale - 0.5 × 0.6 ‰ [3] and Oldoinyo Lengai -0.7 ‰ to + 1.2 ‰) are far lower and are probably sourced directly from ambient mantle. The subduction of oxidized material at arcs presents a likely explanation for the oxidized nature of arc magmas relative to magmas from spreading centers. We observe no distinguishable change in melt fO2 with S degassing and attribute these differences to tectonic setting. Monte Carlo modeling suggests that subducted crust (sediments, altered oceanic crust, and serpentinized lithospheric mantle) delivers ~7.7 × 2.2 x 1010 mols of S with ?34S of -1.5 × 2.3‰ per year into the subduction zone. The total S output from the arc is estimated to be 3.4 × 1.1 x 1010 mols/yr with a ?34S value similar to that of Masaya gas (+5 × 0.5 ‰). Considering ?34S values for ambient upper mantle (0 ‰ [4]) and slab-derived fluids (+14 ‰ [5]) allows calculation of the flux of S released from slab into the mantle wedge. Based on these constraints, we calculate that 1.2 × 0.4 x 1010 mols of S/yr is released from the slab. If slab-derived S is in the S6+ oxidation state, this flux is enough to oxidize the entire mantle wedge to the Fe3+/Fe2+ observed in typical arc rocks in ~ 20 million years. [1] Hilton et al. (2002) Noble Gases in Geochemistry and Cosmochemistry. pp. 319-370 [2] de Moor et al., (in review) G-cubed [3] Rowe (1994) Chem. Geol., 236:303-322 [4] Sakai et al. (1984) J. Petrol., 52: 1307-1331 [5] Alt et al. (2012) Earth Plan. Sci. Lett., 327: 50-60

  6. Initiation of Subduction Zones: A Consequence of Lateral Compositional Buoyancy Contrast Within the Lithosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Niu, Y.; O'Hara, M. J.; Pearce, J. A.

    2001-12-01

    Subduction of oceanic lithosphere into deep mantle is one of the key aspects of plate tectonics. Pull by the subducting-slab due to its negative buoyancy is widely accepted as the major driving force for plate motion and plate tectonics. Hence, there would be no plate tectonics if there were no subduction zones. Yet how a subduction zone initiates remains poorly known. Here we show that lateral compositional (vs. thermal) buoyancy contrast within the lithosphere creates the favored and necessary condition for the initiation of a subduction zone by (1) comparing the compositional and density differences between normal oceanic lithosphere (NOL) represented by abyssal peridotites (AP) and subarc lithosphere (SAL) represented by forearc peridotites (FP), and (2) simple physical analysis. As the gravitational attraction is the principal driving force of the subducting slab, it would be optimal if one part of the lithosphere experiences a greater gravitational attraction than its adjacent neighbor prior to or during the initiation of a subduction. This requires the pre-existence of a density contrast within the lithosphere. If the lithosphere is thermally uniform as is often the case, then the density contrast must result from a compositional contrast. This hypothesis can be tested by examining the lithospheric materials on both sides of a subduction zone. Subduction of a dense NOL beneath a buoyant continental lithosphere is straightforward, but intra-oceanic subduction such as in the western Pacific requires a scrutiny. Our data show that FP of Mariana and Tonga - two of the most important intra-oceanic subduction zones on Earth - are compositionally more depleted than AP: Cr#-sp (mean+/- 1? ) = 0.584+/-0.084(FP) vs. 0.307+/-0.134(AP); Mg#-ol = 0.915+/-0.006(FP) vs. 0.898+/-0.082(AP); Mg#-opx = 0.917+/-0.006(FP) vs. 0.908+/-0.006(AP); Mg#-cpx = 0.929+/-0.021(FP) vs. 0.917+/-0.011(AP). As a result, SAL is > 0.7% less dense than NOL. This density contrast due to compositional difference is equivalent to ? T = ~230° C, which is similar to or greater than the postulated thermal buoyancy contrast between a hot mantle plume and its surroundings. While the depleted nature of FP has been interpreted to result from subducting-slab dehydration induced high extents of mantle wedge melting, evidence indicates that the depletion of these FP predates the inception of the subduction, thus these FP are not residues of present-day arc magmatism. Hence, the compositional buoyancy contrast already existed within the lithosphere before the inception of the subduction in the western Pacific. Much of the Mariana SAL may be fragments of old continental lithosphere, whereas the Tonga/Fiji plateau and Kamchatka lithosphere may be remnants of buoyant, hence unsubductable oceanic plateaus (mantle plume head materials) for the Louisville and Hawaiian hotspots respectively. Passive continental margins, where the largest compositional buoyancy contrast exists within the lithosphere, are the loci of future subduction zones. Geometrical analysis shows that the compositional buoyancy contrast within the lithosphere under compression (e.g., ridge push) induces transtensional planes. The weakest plane in the vicinity of the compositional buoyancy contrast develops into a reverse fault. The dense NOL (the foot-wall) tends to sink into the hot and less dense asthenosphere. Calculations show that this tendency to sink reduces both the normal stress to, and shear resistance along, the fault plane, thus easing the sinking and favoring the initiation of a subduction zone. This concept also explains other observations and makes testable predictions on important geodynamic problems.

  7. The global range of subduction zone thermal structures from exhumed blueschists and eclogites: Rocks are hotter than models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Penniston-Dorland, Sarah C.; Kohn, Matthew J.; Manning, Craig E.

    2015-10-01

    The maximum-pressure Psbnd T conditions (Pmax- T) and prograde Psbnd T paths of exhumed subduction-related metamorphic rocks are compared to predictions of Psbnd T conditions from computational thermal models of subduction systems. While the range of proposed models encompasses most estimated Pmax- T conditions, models predict temperatures that are on average colder than those recorded by exhumed rocks. In general, discrepancies are greatest for Pmax < 2 GPa, where only a few of the highest-T model paths overlap petrologic observations and model averages are 100-300 °C colder than average conditions recorded by rocks. Prograde Psbnd T paths similarly indicate warmer subduction than typical models. Both petrologic estimates and models have inherent biases. Petrologic analysis may overestimate temperatures at Pmax where overprinting occurs during exhumation, although Psbnd T paths suggest that relatively warm conditions are experienced by rocks on the prograde subduction path. Models may underestimate temperatures at depth by neglecting shear heating, hydration reactions and fluid and rock advection. Our compilation and comparison suggest that exhumed high-P rocks provide a more accurate constraint on Psbnd T conditions within subduction zones, and that those conditions may closely represent the subduction geotherm. While exhumation processes in subduction zones require closer petrologic scrutiny, the next generation of models should more comprehensively incorporate all sources of heat. Subduction-zone thermal structures from currently available models appear to be inaccurate, and this mismatch has wide-reaching implications for our understanding of global geochemical cycles, the petrologic structure of subduction zones, and fluid-rock interactions and seismicity within subduction zones.

  8. Dynamic topography in subduction zones: insights from laboratory models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bajolet, Flora; Faccenna, Claudio; Funiciello, Francesca

    2014-05-01

    The topography in subduction zones can exhibit very complex patterns due to the variety of forces operating this setting. If we can deduce the theoretical isostatic value from density structure of the lithosphere, the effect of flexural bending and the dynamic component of topography are difficult to quantify. In this work, we attempt to measure and analyze the topography of the overriding plate during subduction compared to a pure shortening setting. We use analog models where the lithospheres are modeled by thin-sheet layers of silicone putty lying on low-viscosity syrup (asthenosphere). The model is shorten by a piston pushing an oceanic plate while a continental plate including a weak zone to localize the deformation is fixed. In one type of experiments, the oceanic plate bends and subducts underneath the continental one; in a second type the two plates are in contact without any trench, and thus simply shorten. The topography evolution is monitored with a laser-scanner. In the shortening model, the elevation increases progressively, especially in the weak zone, and is consistent with expected isostatic values. In the subduction model, the topography is characterized, from the piston to the back-wall, by a low elevation of the dense oceanic plate, a flexural bulge, the trench forming a deep depression, the highly elevated weak zone, and the continental upper plate of intermediate elevation. The topography of the upper plate is consistent with isostatic values for very early stages, but exhibits lower elevations than expected for later stages. For a same amount of shortening of the continental plate, the thickening is the same and the plate should have the same elevation in both types of models. However, comparing the topography at 20, 29 and 39% of shortening, we found that the weak zone is 0.4 to 0.6 mm lower when there is an active subduction. Theses values correspond to 2.6 to 4 km in nature. Although theses values are high, there are of the same order as dynamic topography and could represent the dynamic effect of the slab sinking into the asthenosphere and lowering the elevation of the upper plate.

  9. Global correlations between maximum magnitudes of subduction zone interface thrust earthquakes and physical parameters of subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schellart, W. P.; Rawlinson, N.

    2013-12-01

    The maximum earthquake magnitude recorded for subduction zone plate boundaries varies considerably on Earth, with some subduction zone segments producing giant subduction zone thrust earthquakes (e.g. Chile, Alaska, Sumatra-Andaman, Japan) and others producing relatively small earthquakes (e.g. Mariana, Scotia). Here we show how such variability might depend on various subduction zone parameters. We present 24 physical parameters that characterize these subduction zones in terms of their geometry, kinematics, geology and dynamics. We have investigated correlations between these parameters and the maximum recorded moment magnitude (MW) for subduction zone segments in the period 1900-June 2012. The investigations were done for one dataset using a geological subduction zone segmentation (44 segments) and for two datasets (rupture zone dataset and epicenter dataset) using a 200 km segmentation (241 segments). All linear correlations for the rupture zone dataset and the epicenter dataset (|R| = 0.00-0.30) and for the geological dataset (|R| = 0.02-0.51) are negligible-low, indicating that even for the highest correlation the best-fit regression line can only explain 26% of the variance. A comparative investigation of the observed ranges of the physical parameters for subduction segments with MW > 8.5 and the observed ranges for all subduction segments gives more useful insight into the spatial distribution of giant subduction thrust earthquakes. For segments with MW > 8.5 distinct (narrow) ranges are observed for several parameters, most notably the trench-normal overriding plate deformation rate (vOPD?, i.e. the relative velocity between forearc and stable far-field backarc), trench-normal absolute trench rollback velocity (vT?), subduction partitioning ratio (vSP?/vS?, the fraction of the subduction velocity that is accommodated by subducting plate motion), subduction thrust dip angle (?ST), subduction thrust curvature (CST), and trench curvature angle (?T). The results indicate that MW > 8.5 subduction earthquakes occur for rapidly shortening to slowly extending overriding plates (-3.0 ? vOPD? ? 2.3 cm/yr), slow trench velocities (-2.9 ? vT? ? 2.8 cm/yr), moderate to high subduction partitioning ratios (vSP?/vS? ? 0.3-1.4), low subduction thrust dip angles (?ST ? 30°), low subduction thrust curvature (CST ? 2.0 × 10-13 m-2) and low trench curvature angles (-6.3° ? ?T ? 9.8°). Epicenters of giant earthquakes with MW > 8.5 only occur at trench segments bordering overriding plates that experience shortening or are neutral (vOPD? ? 0), suggesting that such earthquakes initiate at mechanically highly coupled segments of the subduction zone interface that have a relatively high normal stress (deviatoric compression) on the interface (i.e. a normal stress asperity). Notably, for the three largest recorded earthquakes (Chile 1960, Alaska 1964, Sumatra-Andaman 2004) the earthquake rupture propagated from a zone of compressive deviatoric normal stress on the subduction zone interface to a region of lower normal stress (neutral or deviatoric tension). Stress asperities should be seen separately from frictional asperities that result from a variation in friction coefficient along the subduction zone interface. We have developed a global map in which individual subduction zone segments have been ranked in terms of their predicted capability of generating a giant subduction zone earthquake (MW > 8.5) using the six most indicative subduction zone parameters (vOPD?, vT?, vSP?/vS?, ?ST, CST and ?T). We identify a number of subduction zones and segments that rank highly, which implies a capability to generate MW > 8.5 earthquakes. These include Sunda, North Sulawesi, Hikurangi, Nankai-northern Ryukyu, Kamchatka-Kuril-Japan, Aleutians-Alaska, Cascadia, Mexico-Central America, South America, Lesser Antilles, western Hellenic and Makran. Several subduction segments have a low score, most notably Scotia, New Hebrides and Mariana.

  10. Seismicity of the eastern Hellenic Subduction Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bruestle, A.; Kueperkoch, L.; Rische, M.; Meier, T.; Friederich, W.; Egelados Working Group

    2012-04-01

    The Hellenic Subduction Zone (HSZ) is the seismically most active region of Europe. The African plate is subducting beneath the Aegean lithosphere with a relative velocity of 4 cm per year. A detailed picture of the microseismicity of the eastern HSZ was obtained by the recordings of the temporary networks CYCNET (September 2002 - September 2005) and EGELADOS (October 2005 - March 2007). In total, nearly 7000 earthquakes were located with a location uncertainty of less than 20 km. The SE Aegean is dominated by (1) shallow intraplate seismicity within the Aegean plate, by (2) interplate seismicity at the plate contact and by (3) intermediate deep seismicity along the subducting African slab. Strong shallow seismicity in the upper plate is observed along the Ptolemy graben south of Crete extending towards the Karpathos Basin, indicating intense recent deformation of the forearc. In contrary, low shallow seismicity around Rhodes indicates only minor seismic crustal deformation of the upper plate. An almost NS-striking zone of microseismicity has been located, running from the Karpathos basin via the Nisyros volcanic complex towards the EW striking Gökova graben. In the SE Aegean the geometry of the Wadati-Benioff-Zone (WBZ) within the subducting African plate is revealed in detail by the observed microseismicity. Between about 50 to 100 km depth a continuous band of intermediate deep seismicity describes the strongly curved geometry of the slab. From the central to the eastern margin of the HSZ, the dip direction of the WBZ changes from N to NW with a strong increase of the dip angle beneath the eastern Cretan Sea. The margin of the dipping African slab is marked by an abrupt end of the observed WBZ beneath SW Anatolia. Below 100 km depth, the WBZ of the eastern HSZ is dominated by an isolated cluster of intense intermediate deep seismicity (at 100-180 km depth) beneath the Nisyros volcanic complex. It has an extension of about 100x80 km and is build up of 3 parallel, linear subclusters, dipping along the subducting slab to the NW. The change of crustal deformation and slap dip indicates a significant deformation of the eastern HSZ between Karpathos and Crete.

  11. On subduction zone earthquakes and the Pacific Northwest seismicity

    SciTech Connect

    Chung, Dae H.

    1991-12-01

    A short review of subduction zone earthquakes and the seismicity of the Pacific Northwest region of the United States is provided for the purpose of a basis for assessing issues related to earthquake hazard evaluations for the region. This review of seismotectonics regarding historical subduction zone earthquakes and more recent seismological studies pertaining to rupture processes of subduction zone earthquakes, with specific references to the Pacific Northwest, is made in this brief study. Subduction zone earthquakes tend to rupture updip and laterally from the hypocenter. Thus, the rupture surface tends to become more elongated as one considers larger earthquakes (there is limited updip distance that is strongly coupled, whereas rupture length can be quite large). The great Aleutian-Alaska earthquakes of 1957, 1964, and 1965 had rupture lengths of greater than 650 km. The largest earthquake observed instrumentally, the M{sub W} 9.5, 1960 Chile Earthquake, had a rupture length over 1000 km. However, earthquakes of this magnitude are very unlikely on Cascadia. The degree of surface shaking has a very strong dependency on the depth and style of rupture. The rupture surface during a great earthquake shows heterogeneous stress drop, displacement, energy release, etc. The high strength zones are traditionally termed asperities and these asperities control when and how large an earthquake is generated. Mapping of these asperities in specific subduction zones is very difficult before an earthquake. They show up more easily in inversions of dynamic source studies of earthquake ruptures, after an earthquake. Because seismic moment is based on the total radiated-energy from an earthquake, the moment-based magnitude M{sub W} is superior to all other magnitude estimates, such as M{sub L}, m{sub b}, M{sub bLg}, M{sub S}, etc Probably, just to have a common language, non-moment magnitudes should be converted to M{sub W} in any discussions of subduction zone earthquakes.

  12. Three-Dimensional Thermal Model of the Costa Rica-Nicaragua Subduction Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosas, Juan Carlos; Currie, Claire A.; He, Jiangheng

    2015-10-01

    The thermal structure of a subduction zone controls many key processes, including subducting plate metamorphism and dehydration, the megathrust earthquake seismogenic zone and volcanic arc magmatism. Here, we present the first three-dimensional (3D), steady-state kinematic-dynamic thermal model for the Costa Rica-Nicaragua subduction zone. The model consists of the subducting Cocos plate, the overriding Caribbean Plate, and a viscous mantle wedge in which flow is driven by interactions with the downgoing slab. The Cocos plate geometry includes along-strike variations in slab dip, which induce along-strike flow in the mantle wedge. Along-strike flow occurs primarily below Costa Rica, with a maximum magnitude of 4 cm/year (~40 % of the convergence rate) for a mantle with a dislocation creep rheology; an isoviscous mantle has lower velocities. Along-margin flow causes temperatures variations of up to 80 °C in the subducting slab and mantle wedge at the volcanic arc and backarc. The 3D effects do not strongly alter the shallow (<35 km) thermal structure of the subduction zone. The models predict that the megathrust seismogenic zone width decreases from ~100 km below Costa Rica to just a few kilometers below Nicaragua; the narrow width in the north is due to hydrothermal cooling of the oceanic plate. These results are in good agreement with previous 2D models and with the rupture area of recent earthquakes. In the models, along-strike mantle flow is induced only by variations in slab dip, with flow directed toward the south where the dip angle is smallest. In contrast, geochemical and seismic observations suggest a northward flow of 6-19 cm/year. We do not observe this in our models, suggesting that northward flow may be driven by additional factors, such as slab rollback or proximity to a slab edge (slab window). Such high velocities may significantly affect the thermal structure, especially at the southern end of the subduction zone. In this area, 3D models that include slab rollback and a slab edge are needed to investigate the mantle structure and dynamics.

  13. Oregon Subduction Zone: Venting, Fauna, and Carbonates

    E-print Network

    Goldfinger, Chris

    , are associated with venting sites of cool fluids located on a fault-bend antidline at a water depth of2036 meters along permeable strata or fault zones within these clastic deposits. Methane is enriched in the water seaward-verging (thrust faults dipping toward the continental plate) and landward-verging (thrust faults

  14. The Cascadia Subduction Zone: two contrasting models of lithospheric structure

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Romanyuk, T.V.; Blakely, R.; Mooney, W.D.

    1998-01-01

    The Pacific margin of North America is one of the most complicated regions in the world in terms of its structure and present day geodynamic regime. The aim of this work is to develop a better understanding of lithospheric structure of the Pacific Northwest, in particular the Cascadia subduction zone of Southwest Canada and Northwest USA. The goal is to compare and contrast the lithospheric density structure along two profiles across the subduction zone and to interpet the differences in terms of active processes. The subduction of the Juan de Fuca plate beneath North America changes markedly along the length of the subduction zone, notably in the angle of subduction, distribution of earthquakes and volcanism, goelogic and seismic structure of the upper plate, and regional horizontal stress. To investigate these characteristics, we conducted detailed density modeling of the crust and mantle along two transects across the Cascadia subduction zone. One crosses Vancouver Island and the Canadian margin, the other crosses the margin of central Oregon.

  15. PhD offer : title : Impact of incoming oceanic plate on subduction zone interplate coupling

    E-print Network

    Nicolas, Chamot-Rooke

    little hydration of this young oceanic lithosphere (~6 9 Ma at the subduction zone [Wilson, 2002PhD offer : title : Impact of incoming oceanic plate on subduction zone interplate coupling The largest and most destructive earthquakes occur in subduction zones. Water from the dehydrating subducting

  16. Influence of paired subduction zones: insight into Central Mediterranean tectonics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miller, Meghan Samantha; Moresi, Louis; Faccenna, Claudio; Funiciello, Francesca

    2015-04-01

    The Hellenic and Calabrian slabs are subducting the last remnant of the Ionian oceanic lithosphere into the deep mantle beneath the Central Mediterranean. Seismic tomography studies have provided clear images of the present day morphology of the subducted lithosphere [1]. Tectonic studies have shown that the Calabrian slab has rolled back into its current geometry with episodes of back-arc spreading that have now ceased [2]. Conversely, GPS observations along with tectonic reconstructions show that the Hellenic slab is currently rolling back and appears to have accelerated in the past ~15 My [3], which has resulted in the only region of backarc spreading still active in the Mediterranean. Observations of seismic anisotropy from SKS splitting [4] indicate toroidal flow patterns at the edges of the subducted slabs, which lead to interpretations of mantle convection and flow. Rollback in a confined setting has allowed the two slabs to become a plate-tectonic pushmi-pullyu [5]. The evolution of each slab is necessarily dependent on the other as they are both subducting the same lithosphere in opposite directions and are sufficiently close together that their induced mantle flow patterns must interact strongly. Although this seems to be an oddity in the classical picture of plate tectonics, we note that rollback-dominated subduction is more likely to be important in the highly-confined setting of a closing ocean where the oceanic lithosphere is not always able to develop into a freely-moving plate. Under such conditions, back-to-back pairings of subducting slabs are potentially more common. To investigate this setting, we present preliminary numerical models of paired subduction zones that we have developed using Underworld. We include variations in the strength and buoyancy of the surrounding (over-riding) plates and account for the presence of continentally-derived basement in the Adriatic sea. The geodynamic models allow for exploration into the timing, mechanics, and evolution of the last remnant of the oldest oceanic lithosphere on Earth being consumed due to the convergence of Africa and Eurasia. References: [1] Piromallo & Morelli, 2004; Lucente et al, 1999 [2] D'Agostino & Selvaggi, 2004; Serpelloni et al., 2007 [3] Royden & Husson 2006 [4] Civello & Margheriti, 2004; Evangelidis et al, 2011 [5] Lofting, 1920

  17. The 2004 Sumatra Earthquake and Tsunami: Lessons Learned in Subduction Zone Science and Emergency Management for the Cascadia Subduction Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cassidy, John F.

    2015-03-01

    The 26 December 2004, Mw 9.3 Sumatra earthquake and tsunami was a pivotal turning point in our awareness of the dangers posed by subduction zone earthquakes and tsunamis. This earthquake was the world's largest in 40 years, and it produced the world's deadliest tsunami. This earthquake ruptured a subduction zone that has many similarities to the Cascadia Subduction Zone. In this article, I summarize lessons learned from this tragedy, and make comparisons with potential rupture characteristics, slip distribution, deformation patterns, and aftershock patterns for Cascadia using theoretical modeling and interseismic observations. Both subduction zones are approximately 1,100-1,300 km in length. Both have similar convergence rates and represent oblique subduction. Slip along the subduction fault during the 26 December earthquake is estimated at 15-25 m, similar to values estimated for Cascadia. The width of the rupture, ~80-150 km estimated from modeling seismic and geodetic data, is similar to the width of the "locked and transition zone" estimated for Cascadia. Coseismic subsidence of up to 2 m along the Sumatra coast is also similar to that predicted for parts of northern Cascadia, based on paleoseismic evidence. In addition to scientific lessons learned, the 2004 tsunami provided many critical lessons for emergency management and preparedness. As a result of that tragedy, a number of preparedness initiatives are now underway to promote awareness of earthquake and tsunami hazards along the west coast of North America, and plans are underway to develop prototype tsunami and earthquake warning systems along Cascadia. Lessons learned from the great Sumatra earthquake and tsunami tragedy, both through scientific studies and through public education initiatives, will help to reduce losses during future earthquakes in Cascadia and other subduction zones of the world.

  18. Supra-subduction zone tectonic setting of the Muslim Bagh Ophiolite, northwestern Pakistan: Insights from geochemistry and petrology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kakar, Mohammad Ishaq; Kerr, Andrew C.; Mahmood, Khalid; Collins, Alan S.; Khan, Mehrab; McDonald, Iain

    2014-08-01

    The geology of the Muslim Bagh area comprises the Indian passive continental margin and suture zone, which is overlain by the Muslim Bagh Ophiolite, Bagh Complex and a Flysch Zone of marine-fluvial successions. The Muslim Bagh Ophiolite has a nearly-complete ophiolite stratigraphy. The mantle sequence of foliated peridotite is mainly harzburgite with minor dunite and contains podiform chromite deposits that grade upwards into transition zone dunite. The mantle rocks (harzburgite/dunite) resulted from large degrees of partial melting of lherzolite and have also been affected by melt-peridotite reaction. The Muslim Bagh crustal section has a cyclic succession of ultramafic-mafic cumulate with dunite at the base, that grades into wehrlite/pyroxenite with gabbros (olivine gabbro, norite and hornblende gabbro) at the top. The sheeted dykes are immature in nature and are rooted in crustal gabbros. The dykes are mainly metamorphosed dolerites, with minor intrusions of plagiogranites. The configuration of the crustal section indicates that the crustal rocks were formed over variable time periods, in pulses, by a low magma supply rate. The whole rock geochemistry of the gabbros, sheeted dykes and the mafic dyke swarm suggests that they formed in a supra-subduction zone tectonic setting in Neo-Tethys during the Late Cretaceous. The dykes of the mafic swarm crosscut both the ophiolite and the metamorphic sole rocks and have a less-marked subduction signature than the other mafic rocks. These dykes were possibly emplaced off-axis and can be interpreted to have been generated in the spinel peridotite stability zone i.e., < 50-60 km, and to have risen through a slab window. The Bagh Complex is an assemblage of Triassic-Cretaceous igneous and sedimentary rocks, containing tholeiitic, N-MORB-like basalts and alkali basalts with OIB-type signatures. Nb-Ta depletion in both basalt types suggests possible contamination from continental fragments incorporated into the opening Tethyan oceanic basin during break-up of Gondwana. The lithologies and ages of the Bagh Complex imply that these rocks formed in an area extending from the continental margin over the Neo-Tethyan ocean floor. The Bagh Complex was then juxtaposed with the Muslim Bagh Ophiolite in the final stage of tectonic emplacement.

  19. Fluids and halogens at the diagenetic-metamorphic boundary: evidence from veins in continental basins, western Norway

    E-print Network

    Svensen, Henrik

    Fluids and halogens at the diagenetic-metamorphic boundary: evidence from veins in continental ABSTRACT Seven vein types are recognized in three continental Devonian molasse basins (the Hornelen, Kvamshesten and Solund basins) in western Norway. These include calcite-, quartz- and epidote-dominated veins

  20. The relationship between continental collision process and metamorphic pattern in the Himalayan collision belts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oh, Chang-Whan

    2015-04-01

    Both UHP and HP eclogites are reported from the Kaghan Valley and Tso Morari Massif in the western part of the Himalayan collision belt (Ghazanfar and Chaudhry, 1987; Thakur, 1983). UHP eclogites in the Kaghan record peak metamorphic conditions of 770 °C and 30 kbar (O'Brien et al., 2001) and was retrograded into the epidote-amphibolite or blueschist (580-610 °C, 10-13 kbar; Lombardo and Rolfo, 2000). Sensitive high-resolution ion microprobe dating of zircon reveals that the UHP eclogite formed at ca. 46 Ma (Kaneko et al., 2003; Parrish et al., 2006). The Tso Morari UHP eclogite had formed at 750 °C, > 39 kbar (Mukheerjee et al., 2003; Bundy, 1980) and underwent amphibolite facies retro-grade metamorphism (580 °C, 11 kbar) during uplift (Guillot et al., 2008). Peak metamorphism of the Tso Morari Massif was dated at ca. 53-55 Ma (Leech et al., 2005). Only HP eclogites have been reported from the mid-eastern part of the Himalayan collision belt (Lombardo and Rolfo, 2000; Corrie et al., 2010). The HP eclogite in the mid-eastern part may have formed at ca. > 780 °C and 20 kbar and was overprinted by high-pressure granulite facies metamorphism (780-750°C, 12-10 kbar) at ca. 30 Ma (Groppo et al. 2007; Corrie et al., 2010). HP granulite (890 °C, 17-18 kbar) is reported from the NBS, at the eastern terminus of the Himalayan collision belt; the granulite was subjected to retrograde metamorphism to produce lower-pressure granulite (875-850°C, 10-5 kbar), representing near-isothermal decompression (Liu and Zhong, 1997). The HP granulite metamorphism may have occurred at ca. 22-25 Ma. Along the Himalayan collision belt, peak metamorphism changes eastward from UHP eclogite facies through HP eclogite facies to high-pressure granulite facies, indicating a progressive eastwards decrease in the depth of subduction of continental crust and an eastwards increase in the geothermal gradient. The peak metamorphic ages also decrease from 53-46 Ma in the west to 22-25 Ma in the east indicating propagation of collision towards east. The following collision model of the Himalayan collision belt is proposed based on data published in previous studies. Collision between the Indian and Asian blocks started in the west before ca. 55 Ma. In the western part, the amount of oceanic slab subducted prior to continent collision was enough to pull the continental crust down to the depths of UHP metamorphism, as a wide ocean existed between the Asian and Indian blocks prior to collision. Following UHP metamorphism, oceanic slab break-off started at ca. 55~46 Ma in the west due to the very strong buoyancy of the deeply subducted continental block. In contrast, the subduction of continental crust continued at this time in the middle and eastern parts of the belt. The zone of break-off migrated eastward, initiating a change from steep- to low-angle subduction. Final break-off may have occurred in the easternmost part of the belt at ca. 22-25 Ma. The depth of slab break-off decreased toward the east due to the westward decrease of the amount of subducted oceanic crust along the Himalayan collision belt, resulting eastwards decrease of an uplifting rate due to a decrease in buoyancy of the continental slab. The slower uplift resulted in a longer period of thermal relaxation and a higher geothermal gradient. In the west, the high rate of uplift resulted the epidote amphibolite facies (580-610°C) retrograde metamorphic overprint on the UHP eclogites, whereas the relatively slow uplift in the mid-eastern part caused high-grade granulites (850°C) retrograde metamorphic overprint on the HP eclogites. The study indicates that the metamorphic pattern along the collision belt is strongly related to the amount of subducted oceanic crust between continents before collision and the depth of slab break-off. Therefore metamorphic pattern can be used to interpret both the disappeared and ongoing tectonic process during continental collision.

  1. Ups and downs in western Crete (Hellenic subduction zone).

    PubMed

    Tiberti, Mara Monica; Basili, Roberto; Vannoli, Paola

    2014-01-01

    Studies of past sea-level markers are commonly used to unveil the tectonic history and seismic behavior of subduction zones. We present new evidence on vertical motions of the Hellenic subduction zone as resulting from a suite of Late Pleistocene - Holocene shorelines in western Crete (Greece). Shoreline ages obtained by AMS radiocarbon dating of seashells, together with the reappraisal of shoreline ages from previous works, testify a long-term uplift rate of 2.5-2.7 mm/y. This average value, however, includes periods in which the vertical motions vary significantly: 2.6-3.2 mm/y subsidence rate from 42 ka to 23 ka, followed by ~7.7 mm/y sustained uplift rate from 23 ka to present. The last ~5 ky shows a relatively slower uplift rate of 3.0-3.3 mm/y, yet slightly higher than the long-term average. A preliminary tectonic model attempts at explaining these up and down motions by across-strike partitioning of fault activity in the subduction zone. PMID:25022313

  2. Ups and downs in western Crete (Hellenic subduction zone)

    PubMed Central

    Tiberti, Mara Monica; Basili, Roberto; Vannoli, Paola

    2014-01-01

    Studies of past sea-level markers are commonly used to unveil the tectonic history and seismic behavior of subduction zones. We present new evidence on vertical motions of the Hellenic subduction zone as resulting from a suite of Late Pleistocene - Holocene shorelines in western Crete (Greece). Shoreline ages obtained by AMS radiocarbon dating of seashells, together with the reappraisal of shoreline ages from previous works, testify a long-term uplift rate of 2.5–2.7?mm/y. This average value, however, includes periods in which the vertical motions vary significantly: 2.6–3.2?mm/y subsidence rate from 42?ka to 23?ka, followed by ~7.7?mm/y sustained uplift rate from 23?ka to present. The last ~5?ky shows a relatively slower uplift rate of 3.0–3.3?mm/y, yet slightly higher than the long-term average. A preliminary tectonic model attempts at explaining these up and down motions by across-strike partitioning of fault activity in the subduction zone. PMID:25022313

  3. Deformation processes in great subduction zone earthquake cycles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Y.; Wang, K.; He, J.

    2011-12-01

    Crustal deformation associated with great subduction zone earthquakes yields important information on mantle rheology and slip evolution of the megathrust. We have used three-dimensional viscoelastic finite element models to study the contemporary crustal deformation of three margins, Sumatra, Chile, and Cascadia, that are presently at different stages of their great earthquake cycles. At Sumatra where an Mw 9.2 earthquake occurred in 2004, all the GPS stations are moving seaward. At Chile where an Mw 9.5 earthquake occurred in 1960, coast GPS stations are moving landward, obviously due to the re-locking of the fault, while the inland stations are still moving seaward. At Cascadia where an Mw 9.0 earthquake occurred in 1700, all the GPS stations are moving landward. The earthquake cycle deformation at Alaska where an Mw 9.2 earthquake occurred in 1964 is similar to that of Chile, and the deformation at NE Japan where an Mw 9.0 earthquake occurred in 2011 is similar to that of Sumatra. Model results indicate that the earthquake cycle deformation of different margins is governed by a common physical process. A great earthquake causes the upper plate to move towards the trench and induces shear stresses in the upper mantle. After the earthquake, the fault is re-locked, causing the upper plate to move landward. However, portions of the fault undergo aseismic afterslip for a short duration, causing the overriding areas to move seaward. At the same time, the viscoelastic stress relaxation of the upper mantle causes prolonged seaward motion in inland areas including the forearc and the back arc. After a long time when the earthquake-induced stresses have mostly relaxed, the upper plate moves landward due to the re-locking of the fault. The model of the 2004 Sumatra earthquake indicates that the afterslip must be at work immediately after the earthquake, and the characteristic time of the afterslip is ~1 yr. With the incorporation of the transient (biviscous) rheology, the model well explains the near-field and far-field postseismic deformation within a few years after the 2004 Sumatra event. For all the margins modeled, the steady-state (Maxwell) viscosity of the continental upper mantle is determined to be ~1019 Pa s, two orders of magnitude lower than that of the global value obtained through global postglacial rebound analyses. Based on the model for the 2004 Sumatra earthquake, the transient (Kelvin) viscosity of the continental mantle is one to two orders of magnitude lower than that of the stead-state viscosity. Long-term postseismic deformation is controlled mainly by the steady-state viscosity of the mantle and is relatively better understood. For the short-term postseismic deformation, the interaction of the afterslip of the fault and the transient deformation of the mantle is still poorly understood. Geodetic monitoring following the 2010 Mw 8.8 Maule earthquake and 2011 Mw 9.0 Tohoku earthquakes is expected to improve greatly our understanding the short-term deformation over the next few years.

  4. Obduction of western Anatolian ophiolites: from birth to steady state of a subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Plunder, Alexis; Agard, Philippe; Chopin, Christian; Whitechurch, Hubert; Okay, Aral

    2015-04-01

    During Cretaceous times, the convergence between the Anatolide Tauride block (following the movement of Africa) and Eurasia lead to the closure of a branch of the Neotethyan ocean and to ophiolite obduction. Obducted ophiolite and their sub-ophiolitic units can be found along a 400 kilometre-long north to south transect in western Anatolia. The aim of this contribution is twofold: (1) (re)-appraise the metamorphic pressure-temperature (PT) conditions and evolution of the sub-ophiolitic units of western Anatolia, by constraining the formation of the metamorphic sole during the first stages of subduction and the unusual accretion of ocean-derived units along a subduction interface in an evolving, cooling thermal regime, and (2) understand the dynamics of a large-scale and long-lived obduction. Directly below the ophiolite (mostly made of mantle-derived rocks) lies a metamorphic sole. The upper part is this sole is made of garnet and garnet clinopyroxene amphibolites, the lower part consisting in amphibolite or green-schist facies metapelites and metabasite suggestive of discrete accretion steps. In the northern part of the section the metamorphic sole is characterised by an important blueschist-facies overprint destabilizing the amphibolite paragenesis. This high-pressure overprint is lacking in the southern area. Using field and petrological observations, three units (namely and from top to bottom, OC1, OC2 and OC3) were distinguished in the accretionary complex with PT conditions ranging from incipient metamorphism to blueschist facies conditions. OC1 represents most of the outcropping unit, is found all along the section and shows only low-grade metamorphism. Metamorphic conditions remains hard to establish in this unit made of a stack of hm-thick tectonic slices showing subtle differences in their metamorphic grade (from pristine pillow basalts and hydrothermalized lavas to lawsonite pumpellyite-lawsonite bearing basalts). In OC2, Fe-Mg carpholite-bearing layers were found and attest to high-pressure and low-temperature conditions. As OC2, OC3 exhibit a clear blueschist facies metamorphism, but slightly higher PT conditions. Both OC2 and 3 were only found in the northern area close to the suture zone. Combining these data, available radiometric and palaeogeographic data and recent themomechanical modelling a tentative reconstruction of the subduction-zone evolution through time during the emplacement of a large-scale ophiolite is presented. We show that the cooling of the subduction must occur very quickly (~<15 My) after subduction inception and investigate the implications for early subduction and obduction dynamics.

  5. H2O and CO2 devolatilization in subduction zones: implications for the global water and carbon cycles (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Keken, P. E.; Hacker, B. R.; Syracuse, E. M.; Abers, G. A.

    2010-12-01

    Subduction of sediments and altered oceanic crust functions as a major carbon sink. Upon subduction the carbon may be released by progressive metamorphic reactions, which can be strongly enhanced by free fluids. Quantification of the CO2 release from subducting slabs is important to determine the provenance of CO2 that is released by the volcanic arc and to constrain the flux of carbon to the deeper mantle. In recent work we used a global set of high resolution thermal models of subduction zones to predict the flux of H2O from the subducting slab (van Keken, Hacker, Syracuse, Abers, Subduction factory 4: Depth-dependent flux of H2O from subducting slabs worldwide, J. Geophys. Res., under review) which provides a new estimate of the dehydration efficiency of the global subducting system. It was found that mineralogically bound water can pass efficiently through old and fast subduction zones (such as in the western Pacific) but that warm subduction zones (such as Cascadia) see nearly complete dehydration of the subducting slab. The top of the slab is sufficiently hot in all subduction zones that the upper crust dehydrates significantly. The degree and depth of dehydration is highly diverse and strongly depends on (p,T) and bulk rock composition. On average about one third of subducted H2O reaches 240 km depth, carried principally and roughly equally in the gabbro and peridotite sections. The present-day global flux of H2O to the deep mantle translates to an addition of about one ocean mass over the age of the Earth. We extend the slab devolatilization work to carbon by providing an update to Gorman et al. (Geochem. Geophys. Geosyst, 2006), who quantified the effects of free fluids on CO2 release. The thermal conditions were based on three end-member subduction zones with linear interpolation to provide a global CO2 flux. We use the new high resolution and global set of models to provide higher resolution predictions for the provenance and pathways of CO2 release to the mantle wedge and a more robust prediction of the global CO2 flux in subduction.

  6. Background seismicity rate at subduction zones linked to slab-bending-related hydration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nishikawa, Tomoaki; Ide, Satoshi

    2015-09-01

    Tectonic properties strongly control variations in seismicity among subduction zones. In particular, fluid distribution in subduction zones influences earthquake occurrence, and it varies among subduction zones due to variations in fluid sources such as hydrated oceanic plates. However, the relationship between variations in fluid distribution and variations in seismicity among subduction zones is unclear. Here we divide Earth's subduction zones into 111 regions and estimate background seismicity rates using the epidemic type aftershock sequence model. We demonstrate that background seismicity rate correlates to the amount of bending of the incoming oceanic plate, which in turn is related to the hydration of oceanic plates via slab-bending-related faults. Regions with large bending may have high-seismicity rates because a strongly hydrated oceanic plate causes high pore fluid pressure and reduces the strength of the plate interface. We suggest that variations in fluid distribution can also cause variations in seismicity in subduction zones.

  7. Gravity anomalies, forearc morphology and seismicity in subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bassett, D.; Watts, A. B.; Das, S.

    2012-12-01

    We apply spectral averaging techniques to isolate and remove the long-wavelength large-amplitude trench-normal topographic and free-air gravity anomaly "high" and "low" associated with subduction zones. The residual grids generated illuminate the short-wavelength structure of the forearc. Systematic analysis of all subduction boundaries on Earth has enabled a classification of these grids with particular emphasis placed on topography and gravity anomalies observed in the region above the shallow seismogenic portion of the plate interface. The isostatic compensation of these anomalies is investigated using 3D calculations of the gravitational admittance and coherence. In the shallow region of the megathrust, typically within 100 km from the trench, isolated residual anomalies with amplitudes of up to 2.5 km and 125 mGal are generally interpreted as accreted/subducting relief in the form of seamounts and other bathymetric features. While most of these anomalies, which have radii < 50km, are correlated with areas of reduced seismicity, several in regions such as Japan and Java appear to have influenced the nucleation and/or propagation of large magnitude earthquakes. Long-wavelength (500 - >1000 km) trench-parallel forearc ridges with residual anomalies of up to 1.5 km and 150 mGal are identified in approximately one-third of the subduction zones analyzed. Despite great length along strike, these ridges are less than 100 km wide and several appear uncompensated. A high proportion of arc-normal structure and the truncation/morphological transition of trench-parallel forearc ridges is explained through the identification and tracking of pre-existing structure on the over-riding and subducting plates into the seismogenic portion of the plate boundary. Spatial correlations between regions with well-defined trench-parallel forearc ridges and the occurrence of large magnitude interplate earthquakes, in addition to the uncompensated state of these ridges, suggest links between the morphology of the forearc and the peak earthquake stress drop on the subduction megathrust. We present our classification of residual bathymetric and gravitational anomalies using examples from Sumatra, Kuril-Kamchatka, Mariana, Peru-Chile and the Tonga-Kermadec margin. We reassess proposed links between trench-parallel residual topography and gravity anomalies and subduction zone seismicity using global earthquake catalogs and a new compilation of published aftershock locations and distributed slip models from over 200 of the largest subduction zone earthquakes. Our results highlight the role of pre-existing structure in both the over-riding and subducting plates in modulating the along- and across-strike segmentation of subduction zones. Understanding the genesis of long-wavelength trench-parallel forearc ridges may provide further insights into links between forearc morphology, the rheology of the overriding and subducting plates and seismicity in subduction zones.

  8. Subduction zone plate bending earthquakes and implications for the hydration of the downgoing plate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Emry, E. L.; Wiens, D. A.

    2011-12-01

    The greatest uncertainty in the amount of water input into the Earth at subduction zones results from poor constraints on the degree and depth extent of mantle serpentinization in the downgoing slab. The maximum depth of serpentinization is thought to be partly controlled by the maximum depth of tensional earthquakes in the outer rise and trench and is expected to vary from subduction zone to subduction zone or even along-strike for a single subduction zone. We explore the maximum depth of extensional faulting on the incoming plate for various subduction zones in order to gain insight into the possible extent of slab serpentinization. We relocate trench events at island arc subduction zones using hypocentroidal decomposition to determine which earthquakes occurred within the incoming plate. For earthquakes with Mw ~5.5+, we determine accurate depths and refine the CMT focal mechanism by inverting teleseismic P and SH waveforms. Results from the Mariana outer rise indicate that extensional earthquakes occur in the Pacific plate at depths ranging from 10-20 km beneath the top of the crust, with the character of trench seismicity changing significantly between the northern and southern portions of the subduction zone. In comparision, results from the Aleutian subduction zone show extensional trench earthquakes occurring from 5-30 km below the surface of the subducting slab. Compressional incoming plate earthquakes occur only near the Alaskan Peninsula, possibly due to stronger coupling between the slab and overriding plate in this region. Further results from oceanic arc subduction zones will be presented and differences between subduction zones as well as along-strike differences in the character of trench seismicity will be highlighted. If the presence of extensional faulting indicates subducting lithosphere hydration, then we expect that as much as the top 30 km of the slab may be hydrated and that the degree of slab serpentinization may vary significantly between subduction zones, potentially affecting arc geochemistry, intermediate depth seismicity, and the subduction zone water budget.

  9. Enrichment of trace elements in garnet amphibolites from a paleo-subduction zone: Catalina Schist, southern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sorensen, Sorena S.; Grossman, J.N.

    1989-01-01

    The abundance, P-T stability, solubility, and element-partitioning behavior of minerals such as rutile, garnet, sphene, apatite, zircon, zoisite, and allanite are critical variables in models for mass transfer from the slab to the mantle wedge in deep regions of subduction zones. The influence of these minerals on the composition of subduction-related magmas has been inferred (and disputed) from inverse modelling of the geochemistry of island-arc basalt, or by experiment. Although direct samples of the dehydration + partial-melting region of a mature subduction zone have not been reported from subduction complexes, garnet amphibolites from melanges of circumpacific and Caribbean blueschist terranes reflect high T (>600??C) conditions in shallower regions. Such rocks record geochemical processes that affected deep-seated, high-T portions of paleo-subduction zones. In the Catalina Schist, a subduction-zone metamorphic terrane of southern California, metasomatized and migmatitic garnet amphibolites occur as blocks in a matrix of meta-ultramafic rocks. This mafic and ultramafic complex may represent either slab-derived material accreted to the mantle wedge of a nascent subduction zone or a portion of a shear zone closely related to the slab-mantle wedge contact, or both. The trace-element geochemistry of the complex and the distribution of trace elements among the minerals of garnet amphibolites were studied by INAA, XRF, electron microprobe, and SEM. In order of increasing alteration from a probable metabasalt protolith, three common types of garnet amphibolite blocks in the Catalina Schist are: (1) non-migmatitic, clinopyroxene-bearing blocks, which are compositionally similar to MORB that has lost an albite component; (2) garnet-amphibolite blocks, which have rinds that reflect local interaction between metabasite, metaperidotite, and fluid; and (3) migmatites that are extremely enriched in Th, HFSE, LREE, and other trace elements. These trace-element enrichments are mineralogically controlled by rutile, garnet, sphene, apatite, zircon, zoisite, and allanite. Alkali and alkaline earth elements are much less enriched in the solid assemblage, and thus appear to be decoupled from the other elements in the inferred metasomatic process(es). The compositions of migmatitic garnet amphibolite blocks seem to complement that of "average" island-arc tholeiite. Trace-element metasomatism reflects fluid-solid, rather than melt-solid, interaction. The metasomatic effects indicate that H2O-rich fluid, perhaps with a significant component of Na-Al silicate and alkalis, carried Th, U, Sr, REE, and HFSE. Fractionations of LREE in migmatites resemble those of migmatitic metasedimentary rocks underlying the mafic and ultramafic complex. "Exotic" LREE deposited in allanite in migmatites could have been derived from fluids in equilibrium with subducted sediment. If the paleo-subduction zone represented by the mafic and ultramafic complex of the Catalina Schist had continued its thermal and fluid evolution, a selvage of similarly enriched rocks might have been generated along the slab-mantle wedge contact between ~30 and 85 km depth. Rocks affected by "subduction-zone metasomatism," although rarely recognized at the surface, could be volumetrically significant products of the initiation of subduction and may prove to be geochemical probes of convergent margins that approach the significance of xenoliths in the study of other magmatic environments. ?? 1989.

  10. Topography and Surface Change at the Shallow Subduction Zone Near Kodiak Island, Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sauber, J.; Carver, G. A.; Carabajal, C. C.

    2001-12-01

    In our SRTM study we focus on a class of subduction zones that are responsible for the largest earthquakes as well as dramatic topography; i.e., ones in which the initial dip of the downgoing oceanic plate is shallow (<= 15° to depths of 30-40 km) and the strain regime in the forearc region of the continental overriding plate is compressional. Here we report initial results from the Kodiak Islands, Alaska portion of the study. Specifically, we are using moderate and high resolution topographic data, along with SRTM and Landsat-7 image data, to characterize the rugged topography, to identify fold and thrust faults and to delineate the location and extent of Late Pleistocene and Holocene marine terraces across the Kodiak Islands of the Alaska-Aleutian subduction zone. Additionally, kinematic GPS observations were made along several of the roads of northeastern Kodiak and across 3 sets of marine terraces. These elevation profiles will be compared with the SRTM derived digital elevation model (DEM) to evaluate the resolution of the preliminary product. The existing DEM's of the complete Kodiak Island region are of DTED Level 1 resolution. We have used these data to create a preliminary three-dimensional perspective view with a Landsat-7 image overlay. From these data we identified a number of faults and we made field observations that indicate Holocene offsets on several within a fold and thrust belt near the northeast coast of the Kodiak Islands. Our overall results of this study will be used to examine the relationship between attributes of the subduction zone (such as dip and age of downgoing slab, width of main thrust zone and known features within downgoing plate) and geophysical and geological observations and derived parameters. These include: (1) short-term deformation rates estimated from geodetic measurements (1993-2001) that are associated with the seismic cycle, (2) uplift rates that can be estimated from dating of the high-resolution elevation profiles of late-Holocene marine terraces and (3) topographic features.

  11. Chronology of historical tsunamis in Mexico and its relation to large earthquakes along the subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Suarez, G.; Mortera, C.

    2013-05-01

    The chronology of historical earthquakes along the subduction zone in Mexico spans a time period of approximately 400 years. Although the population density along the coast of Mexico has always been low, relative to that of central Mexico, several of the large subduction earthquakes reports include references to the presence of tsunamis invading the southern coast of Mexico. Here we present a chronology of historical tsunamis affecting the Pacific coast of Mexico and compare this with the historical record of subduction events and to the existing Mexican and worldwide catalogs of tsunamis in the Pacific basin. Due to the geographical orientation of the Pacific coat of Mexico, tsunamis generated on the other subduction zones of the Pacific have not had damaging effects in the country. Among the tsunamis generated by local earthquakes, the largest one by far is the one produced by the earthquake of 28 March 1787. The reported tsunami has an inundation area that reaches for over 6 km inland. The length of the coast where the tsunami was reported extends for over 450 km. In the last 100 years two large tsunamis have been reported along the Pacific coast of Mexico. On 22 June 1932 a tsunami with reported wave heights of up to 11 m hit the coast of Jalisco and Colima. The town of Cuyutlan was heavily damaged and approximately 50 people lost their lives do to the impact of the tsunami. This unusual tsunami was generated by an aftershock (M 6.9) of the large 3 June 1932 event (M 8.1). The main shock of 3 June did not produce a perceptible tsunami. It has been proposed that the 22 June event is a tsunami earthquake generated on the shallow part of the subduction zone. On 16 November 1925 an unusual tsunami was reported in the town of Zihuatanejo in the state of Guerrero, Mexico. No earthquake on the Pacific rim occurs at the same time as this tsunami and the historical record of hurricanes and tropical storms do not list the presence of a meteorological disturbance that could explain a surge wave of the height reported. Here we investigate the morphology of the trench in this region to analyze whether a local landslide on the trench slope or in the continental shelf could be the cause of this tsunami.

  12. Fore- and Back-Arc Structures Along the Hikurangi-Kermadec Subduction Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scherwath, M.; Kopp, H.; Flueh, E. R.; Henrys, S. A.; Sutherland, R.

    2009-04-01

    The Hikurangi-Kermadec subduction zone northeast of New Zealand represents an ideal target to study lateral variations of subduction zone processes. The incoming Pacific plate changes from being a large igneous province, called the Hikurangi Plateau, in the south to normal oceanic plate north of the Rapuhia Scarp. The overriding Australian plate is continental in the south, forming the North Island of New Zealand, and changes to an island arc in the north. Further lateral variability exists in changes in volcanic and hydro-thermal activity, transitions from accretion to subduction erosion, backarc spreading and rifting, and is accompanied by northward increasing seismicity. As part of the MANGO project (Marine Geoscientific Investigations on the Input and Output of the Kermadec Subduction Zone), four marine geophysical transects of largely seismic reflection and refraction data provide constraints on the upper lithospheric structures across the Hikurangi-Kermadec Trench between 29-38 degrees South. On MANGO profile 1 in the south, the initially shallow subduction of the incoming plateau coincides with crustal underplating beneath the East Cape ridge. To the west lies the 100 km wide and over 10 km deep Raukumara Basin. Seismic velocities of the upper arc mantle are around 8 km/s and are considered normal. In contrast, on MANGO profile 4, about 1000 km to the north around the volcanically active Raoul Island, the incoming oceanic crust appears to bend considerably steeper and thus causes a 50 km narrower forearc with a smaller forearc basin. Furthermore, the upper mantle velocities in both plates are relatively low (7.4-7.7 km/s), likely indicating strong bending related deformation of the incoming plate and thermal activity within the arc possibly due to spreading. Here, arc volcanism is relatively active, with many large volcanoes directly on the ridge. The central two transects MANGO 2 and 3, though without data coverage of the structure of the incoming plate, are more similar to MANGO 4. The arc regions appear to be strongly affected by the activity of the arc. The arc crust of the northern MANGO 3 becomes significantly thinner in the backarc region due to extension, and much reduced volcanism behind the ridge. The structures on MANGO 2, on the other hand, cover strong and densely spaced thermal activity from the adjacent arc volcanism, possibly linked to a recent, fluid-rich passage of the Hikurangi Plateau.

  13. Water and the Oxidation State of Subduction Zone Magmas

    SciTech Connect

    Kelley, K.; Cottrell, E

    2009-01-01

    Mantle oxygen fugacity exerts a primary control on mass exchange between Earth's surface and interior at subduction zones, but the major factors controlling mantle oxygen fugacity (such as volatiles and phase assemblages) and how tectonic cycles drive its secular evolution are still debated. We present integrated measurements of redox-sensitive ratios of oxidized iron to total iron (Fe{sup 3+}/{Sigma}Fe), determined with Fe K-edge micro-x-ray absorption near-edge structure spectroscopy, and pre-eruptive magmatic H{sub 2}O contents of a global sampling of primitive undegassed basaltic glasses and melt inclusions covering a range of plate tectonic settings. Magmatic Fe{sup 3+}/{Sigma}Fe ratios increase toward subduction zones (at ridges, 0.13 to 0.17; at back arcs, 0.15 to 0.19; and at arcs, 0.18 to 0.32) and correlate linearly with H{sub 2}O content and element tracers of slab-derived fluids. These observations indicate a direct link between mass transfer from the subducted plate and oxidation of the mantle wedge.

  14. Modeling of Mantle Convection in 3D Subduction Zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bengtson, A. K.; van Keken, P. E.; Lin, S.; Kneller, E. A.

    2010-12-01

    The influence of 3D subduction zone geometries on mantle convection patterns is not well characterized. Subducting plates with complex 3D geometries often exhibit seismological signatures that cannot be explained by 2D flow patterns [Hoernle et al. Nature 2008/2009; Long and Silver Science 2008; Kneller et al. Nature 2007]. We use finite element methods to study the lateral transport and thermal structure in 3D subduction zones and their evolution over time. Realistic 3D geometries were created from seismological observations for both the Marianas and Central America, building upon the work of Kneller et al. [Nature 2007; Geochem. Geophys. Geosyst. 2008]. Highly refined meshes were created using spherical geometry on a Cartesian mesh, and slab motion was prescribed in a kinematic manner. The finite element code Sepran was used to solve the Stokes and heat equations using diffusion creep laws for viscosity. We present the velocities, temperatures, and pressures in the mantle wedge for the Marianas and Central America regions. Comparisons are made between 2D and 3D flow patterns to test the dependence of flow on 3D geometries, in addition to dependence of flow on plate direction. Resulting thermal and lateral structures are important for understanding mantle and slab mineralogy and seismic signatures. We find the lateral transport is particularly important in regions of strong obliquity and trench curvature.

  15. Geophysical evidence for the evolution of the California Inner Continental Borderland as a metamorphic core complex

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    ten Brink, Uri S.; Zhang, Jie; Brocher, Thomas M.; Okaya, David A.; Klitgord, Kim D.; Fuis, Gary S.

    2000-01-01

    We use new seismic and gravity data collected during the 1994 Los Angeles Region Seismic Experiment (LARSE) to discuss the origin of the California Inner Continental Borderland (ICB) as an extended terrain possibly in a metamorphic core complex mode. The data provide detailed crustal structure of the Borderland and its transition to mainland southern California. Using tomographic inversion as well as traditional forward ray tracing to model the wide-angle seismic data, we find little or no sediments, low (?6.6 km/s) P wave velocity extending down to the crust-mantle boundary, and a thin crust (19 to 23 km thick). Coincident multichannel seismic reflection data show a reflective lower crust under Catalina Ridge. Contrary to other parts of coastal California, we do not find evidence for an underplated fossil oceanic layer at the base of the crust. Coincident gravity data suggest an abrupt increase in crustal thickness under the shelf edge, which represents the transition to the western Transverse Ranges. On the shelf the Palos Verdes Fault merges downward into a landward dipping surface which separates "basement" from low-velocity sediments, but interpretation of this surface as a detachment fault is inconclusive. The seismic velocity structure is interpreted to represent Catalina Schist rocks extending from top to bottom of the crust. This interpretation is compatible with a model for the origin of the ICB as an autochthonous formerly hot highly extended region that was filled with the exhumed metamorphic rocks. The basin and ridge topography and the protracted volcanism probably represent continued extension as a wide rift until ?13 m.y. ago. Subduction of the young and hot Monterey and Arguello microplates under the Continental Borderland, followed by rotation and translation of the western Transverse Ranges, may have provided the necessary thermomechanical conditions for this extension and crustal inflow.

  16. Distribution of slip from 11 Mw > 6 earthquakes in the northern Chile subduction zone

    E-print Network

    Simons, Mark

    Distribution of slip from 11 Mw > 6 earthquakes in the northern Chile subduction zone M. E in northern Chile (23°­25°S) between the years 1993 and 2000. We invert body wave waveforms and geodetic data. Simons (2006), Distribution of slip from 11 Mw > 6 earthquakes in the northern Chile subduction zone, J

  17. Interseismic coupling, segmentation and mechanical behavior of the central Chile subduction zone

    E-print Network

    Vigny, Christophe

    Interseismic coupling, segmentation and mechanical behavior of the central Chile subduction zone M in Chile over the last two decades showed that an entire portion of the Nazca-South America subduction zone in central Chile), combined with other published data sets, to quantify the spatial variations

  18. High-resolution models of subduction zones: Implications for mineral dehydration reactions and the transport of water

    E-print Network

    van Keken, Peter

    High-resolution models of subduction zones: Implications for mineral dehydration reactions volcanism is intimately linked to mineral dehydration reactions in the subducting oceanic mantle, crust conflicting estimates of slab temperature in subduction zones that are characterized by rapid subduction

  19. Plate detachment, asthenosphere upwelling, and topography across subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gvirtzman, Zohar; Nur, Amos

    1999-06-01

    This study analyzes the topography across subduction zones, considering the separate contributions of the crust and the mantle lithosphere to the observed surface elevation. We have found a transition from a region where the overriding plate is coupled to the descending slab and pulled down along with it to a region where the overriding plate floats freely on the asthenosphere. When the subducting slab retreats oceanward rapidly this transition is abrupt, and the edge of the overriding plate is uplifted. We propose that at some point during rapid slab rollback the overriding plate detaches and rebounds like a boat released from its keel. This event is associated with suction of asthenospheric material into the gap that is opened between the plates up to the base of the crust. As a result, the forearc uplifts, and magmatism in the arc increases.

  20. Late holocene tectonics and paleoseismicity, southern cascadia subduction zone.

    PubMed

    Clarke, S H; Carver, G A

    1992-01-10

    Holocene deformation indicative of large subduction-zone earthquakes has occurred on two large thrust fault systems in the Humboldt Bay region of northern California. Displaced stratigraphic markers record three offsets of 5 to 7 meters each on the Little Salmon fault during the past 1700 years. Smaller and less frequent Holocene displacements have occurred in the Mad River fault zone. Elsewhere, as many as five episodes of sudden subsidence of marsh peats and fossil forests and uplift of marine terraces are recorded. Carbon-14 dates suggest that the faulting, subsidence, and uplift events were synchronous. Relations between magnitude and various fault-offset parameters indicate that earthquakes accompanying displacements on the Little Salmon fault had magnitudes of at least 7.6 to 7.8. More likely this faulting accompanied rupture of the boundary between the Gorda and North American plates, and magnitudes were about 8.4 or greater. PMID:17756070

  1. Slab melting versus slab dehydration in subduction-zone magmatism

    PubMed Central

    Mibe, Kenji; Kawamoto, Tatsuhiko; Matsukage, Kyoko N.; Fei, Yingwei; Ono, Shigeaki

    2011-01-01

    The second critical endpoint in the basalt-H2O system was directly determined by a high-pressure and high-temperature X-ray radiography technique. We found that the second critical endpoint occurs at around 3.4 GPa and 770?°C (corresponding to a depth of approximately 100 km in a subducting slab), which is much shallower than the previously estimated conditions. Our results indicate that the melting temperature of the subducting oceanic crust can no longer be defined beyond this critical condition and that the fluid released from subducting oceanic crust at depths greater than 100 km under volcanic arcs is supercritical fluid rather than aqueous fluid and/or hydrous melts. The position of the second critical endpoint explains why there is a limitation to the slab depth at which adakitic magmas are produced, as well as the origin of across-arc geochemical variations of trace elements in volcanic rocks in subduction zones. PMID:21536910

  2. Slab melting versus slab dehydration in subduction-zone magmatism.

    PubMed

    Mibe, Kenji; Kawamoto, Tatsuhiko; Matsukage, Kyoko N; Fei, Yingwei; Ono, Shigeaki

    2011-05-17

    The second critical endpoint in the basalt-H(2)O system was directly determined by a high-pressure and high-temperature X-ray radiography technique. We found that the second critical endpoint occurs at around 3.4 GPa and 770?°C (corresponding to a depth of approximately 100 km in a subducting slab), which is much shallower than the previously estimated conditions. Our results indicate that the melting temperature of the subducting oceanic crust can no longer be defined beyond this critical condition and that the fluid released from subducting oceanic crust at depths greater than 100 km under volcanic arcs is supercritical fluid rather than aqueous fluid and/or hydrous melts. The position of the second critical endpoint explains why there is a limitation to the slab depth at which adakitic magmas are produced, as well as the origin of across-arc geochemical variations of trace elements in volcanic rocks in subduction zones. PMID:21536910

  3. When Boundary Layers Collide: Plumes v. Subduction Zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moresi, L. N.; Betts, P. G.; Miller, M. S.; Willis, D.; O'Driscoll, L.

    2014-12-01

    Many subduction zones retreat while hotspots remain sufficiently stable in the mantle to provide an approximate reference frame. As a consequence, the mantle can be thought of as an unusual convecting system which self-organises to promote frequent collisions of downgoing material with upwellings. We present three 3D numerical models of subduction where buoyant material from a plume head and an associated ocean-island chain or plateau produce flat slab subduction and deformation of the over-riding plate. We observe transient instabilities of the convergent margin including: contorted trench geometry; trench migration parallel with the plate margin; folding of the subducting slab and orocline development at the convergent margin; and transfer of the plateau to the overriding plate. The presence of plume material beneath the oceanic plateau causes flat subduction above the plume, resulting in a "bowed" shaped subducting slab. In the absence of a plateau at the surface, the slab can remain uncoupled from the over-riding plate during very shallow subduction and hence there is very little shortening at the surface or advance of the plate boundary. In plateau-only models, plateau accretion at the edge of the overriding plate results in trench migration around the edge of the plateau before subduction re-establishes directly behind the trailing edge of the plateau. The plateau shortens during accretion and some plateau material subducts. In a plateau-plus-plume model, accretion is associated with rapid trench advance as the flat slab drives the plateau into the margin. This indentation stops once a new convergent boundary forms close to the original trench location. A slab window formed beneath the accreted plateau allows plume material to flow from beneath the subducting plate to the underside of the overriding plate. In all of these models the subduction zone maintains a relatively stable configuration away from the buoyancy anomalies within the downgoing plate. The models provide a dynamic context for plateau and plume accretion in accretionary orogenic systems.

  4. High interseismic coupling in the Eastern Makran (Pakistan) subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Y. N.; Jolivet, R.; Simons, M.; Agram, P. S.; Martens, H. R.; Li, Z.; Lodi, S. H.

    2015-06-01

    Estimating the extent of interseismic coupling along subduction zone megathrusts is essential for quantitative assessments of seismic and tsunami hazards. Up to now, quantifying the seismogenic potential of the eastern Makran subduction zone at the northern edge of the Indian ocean has remained elusive due to a paucity of geodetic observations. Furthermore, non-tectonic processes obscure the signature of accumulating elastic strain. Historical earthquakes of magnitudes greater than 7 have been reported. In particular, the 1945 Mw 8.1 earthquake resulted in a significant tsunami that swept the shores of the Arabian Sea and the Indian Ocean. A quantitative estimate of elastic strain accumulation along the subduction plate boundary in eastern Makran is needed to confront previous indirect and contradictory conclusions about the seismic potential in the region. Here, we infer the distribution of interseismic coupling on the eastern Makran megathrust from time series of satellite Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) images acquired between 2003 and 2010, applying a consistent series of corrections to extract the low amplitude, long wavelength deformation signal associated with elastic strain on the megathrust. We find high interseismic coupling (i.e. the megathrust does not slip and elastic strain accumulates) in the central section of eastern Makran, where the 1945 earthquake occurred, while lower coupling coincides spatially with the subduction of the Sonne Fault Zone. The inferred accumulation of elastic strain since the 1945 earthquake is consistent with the future occurrence of magnitude 7+ earthquakes and we cannot exclude the possibility of a multi-segment rupture (Mw 8+). However, the likelihood for such scenarios might be modulated by partitioning of plate convergence between slip on the megathrust and internal deformation of the overlying, actively deforming, accretionary wedge.

  5. Deep-Focus Repeating Earthquakes in the TongaFiji Subduction Zone by Wen-che Yu and Lianxing Wen*

    E-print Network

    Wen, Lianxing

    Deep-Focus Repeating Earthquakes in the Tonga­Fiji Subduction Zone by Wen-che Yu and Lianxing Wen* Abstract Deep-focus earthquakes in the Tonga­Fiji subduction zone make up greater than 66% of the globally recorded deep seismicity. The high number of deep-focus seismicity in this active subduction zone allows us

  6. Electrical structure of the central Cascadia subduction zone: The EMSLAB Lincoln Line revisited

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Evans, Rob L.; Wannamaker, Philip E.; McGary, R. Shane; Elsenbeck, Jimmy

    2014-09-01

    The EMSLAB experiment was an ambitious onshore-offshore magnetotelluric (MT) transect of the Cascadia subduction zone. When completed (1985-1988), it was the largest experiment of its kind. Modeling and inversion capabilities at the time were, however, not sufficiently sophisticated to handle a fully regularized inversion of the data, including the seafloor data and bathymetric constraints, with the main final model presented based on trial and error forward modeling of the responses. Moreover, new data collected as part of the Earthscope USArray program are of higher quality due to improvements in instrument technology, and augment the original EMSLAB data set, presenting an opportunity to revisit the structure in this part of the subduction system. We have integrated the original wide-band MT data as well as several long-period stations from the original EMSLAB data set and invert these in conjunction with EMSLAB seafloor responses and new Earthscope data on land. This new composite data set has been analyzed in several ways, within a two-dimensional geometry in which conductivity is assumed to be invariant along a strike direction roughly coincident with that of the subduction zone. We have solved for fully smooth regularized models, as well as solutions that allow discontinuities in conductivity along the top surface of the descending slab. Finally, we have tested specific features in the EMSLAB model, notably a moderately shallow (~30 km depth) forearc conductor. A feature similar to this shallow conductor is a consistent and required feature in our new inversion models, but the new models highlight the connection between the slab and what is interpreted to be an accumulation of aqueous fluids in the deep crust. The depth (~40 km) at which the conductor intersects the slab suggests that the fluids are released by the transition of hydrous basalt to eclogite at upper greenschist facies and higher metamorphic grade. The nose of the mantle wedge has a conductivity consistent with a dry peridotite composition and thermal models of the system. At a depth of around 80 km the mantle intersecting the slab shows a slight increase in conductivity. This increase is not sufficient to require the presence of melt, but a conductor indicative of melt can be inserted into the model at this depth without compromising the fit.

  7. High-pressure amphibolite facies dynamic metamorphism and the Mesozoic tectonic evolution of an ancient continental margin, east- central Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dusel-Bacon, C.; Hansen, V.L.; Scala, J.A.

    1995-01-01

    Ductilely deformed amphibolite facies tectonites comprise two adjacent terranes in east-central Alaska: the northern, structurally higher Taylor Mountain terrane and the southern, structurally lower Lake George subterrane of the Yukon-Tanana terrane. The pressure, temperature, kinematic and age data are interpreted to indicate that the metamorphism of the Taylor Mountain terrane and Lake George subterrane took place during different phases of a latest Palaeozoic through early Mesozoic shortening episode resulting from closure of an ocean basin now represented by klippen of the Seventymile-Slide Mountain terrane. High- to intermediate-pressure metamorphism of the Taylor Mountain terrane took place within a SW-dipping (present-day coordinates) subduction system. High- to intermediate-pressure metamorphism of the Lake George subterrane and the structural contact zone occurred during NW-directed overthrusting of the Taylor Mountain, Seventymile-Slide Mountain and Nisutlin terranes, and imbrication of the continental margin in Jurassic time. -from Authors

  8. Postcollisional mafic igneous rocks record crust-mantle interaction during continental deep subduction.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Zi-Fu; Dai, Li-Qun; Zheng, Yong-Fei

    2013-01-01

    Findings of coesite and microdiamond in metamorphic rocks of supracrustal protolith led to the recognition of continental subduction to mantle depths. The crust-mantle interaction is expected to take place during subduction of the continental crust beneath the subcontinental lithospheric mantle wedge. This is recorded by postcollisional mafic igneous rocks in the Dabie-Sulu orogenic belt and its adjacent continental margin in the North China Block. These rocks exhibit the geochemical inheritance of whole-rock trace elements and Sr-Nd-Pb isotopes as well as zircon U-Pb ages and Hf-O isotopes from felsic melts derived from the subducted continental crust. Reaction of such melts with the overlying wedge peridotite would transfer the crustal signatures to the mantle sources for postcollisional mafic magmatism. Therefore, postcollisonal mafic igneous rocks above continental subduction zones are an analog to arc volcanics above oceanic subduction zones, providing an additional laboratory for the study of crust-mantle interaction at convergent plate margins. PMID:24301173

  9. Postcollisional mafic igneous rocks record crust-mantle interaction during continental deep subduction

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Zi-Fu; Dai, Li-Qun; Zheng, Yong-Fei

    2013-01-01

    Findings of coesite and microdiamond in metamorphic rocks of supracrustal protolith led to the recognition of continental subduction to mantle depths. The crust-mantle interaction is expected to take place during subduction of the continental crust beneath the subcontinental lithospheric mantle wedge. This is recorded by postcollisional mafic igneous rocks in the Dabie-Sulu orogenic belt and its adjacent continental margin in the North China Block. These rocks exhibit the geochemical inheritance of whole-rock trace elements and Sr-Nd-Pb isotopes as well as zircon U-Pb ages and Hf-O isotopes from felsic melts derived from the subducted continental crust. Reaction of such melts with the overlying wedge peridotite would transfer the crustal signatures to the mantle sources for postcollisional mafic magmatism. Therefore, postcollisonal mafic igneous rocks above continental subduction zones are an analog to arc volcanics above oceanic subduction zones, providing an additional laboratory for the study of crust-mantle interaction at convergent plate margins. PMID:24301173

  10. Turbidite event history--Methods and implications for Holocene paleoseismicity of the Cascadia subduction zone

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Goldfinger, Chris; Nelson, C. Hans; Morey, Ann E.; Johnson, Joel E.; Patton, Jason R.; Karabanov, Eugene; Gutierrez-Pastor, Julia; Eriksson, Andrew T.; Gracia, Eulalia; Dunhill, Gita; Enkin, Randolph J.; Dallimore, Audrey; Vallier, Tracy; Kayen, Robert, (Edited By)

    2012-01-01

    Turbidite systems along the continental margin of Cascadia Basin from Vancouver Island, Canada, to Cape Mendocino, California, United States, have been investigated with swath bathymetry; newly collected and archive piston, gravity, kasten, and box cores; and accelerator mass spectrometry radiocarbon dates. The purpose of this study is to test the applicability of the Holocene turbidite record as a paleoseismic record for the Cascadia subduction zone. The Cascadia Basin is an ideal place to develop a turbidite paleoseismologic method and to record paleoearthquakes because (1) a single subduction-zone fault underlies the Cascadia submarine-canyon systems; (2) multiple tributary canyons and a variety of turbidite systems and sedimentary sources exist to use in tests of synchronous turbidite triggering; (3) the Cascadia trench is completely sediment filled, allowing channel systems to trend seaward across the abyssal plain, rather than merging in the trench; (4) the continental shelf is wide, favoring disconnection of Holocene river systems from their largely Pleistocene canyons; and (5) excellent stratigraphic datums, including the Mazama ash and distinguishable sedimentological and faunal changes near the Pleistocene-Holocene boundary, are present for correlating events and anchoring the temporal framework. Multiple tributaries to Cascadia Channel with 50- to 150-km spacing, and a wide variety of other turbidite systems with different sedimentary sources contain 13 post-Mazama-ash and 19 Holocene turbidites. Likely correlative sequences are found in Cascadia Channel, Juan de Fuca Channel off Washington, and Hydrate Ridge slope basin and Astoria Fan off northern and central Oregon. A probable correlative sequence of turbidites is also found in cores on Rogue Apron off southern Oregon. The Hydrate Ridge and Rogue Apron cores also include 12-22 interspersed thinner turbidite beds respectively. We use 14C dates, relative-dating tests at channel confluences, and stratigraphic correlation of turbidites to determine whether turbidites deposited in separate channel systems are correlative - triggered by a common event. In most cases, these tests can separate earthquake-triggered turbidity currents from other possible sources. The 10,000-year turbidite record along the Cascadia margin passes several tests for synchronous triggering and correlates well with the shorter onshore paleoseismic record. The synchroneity of a 10,000-year turbidite-event record for 500 km along the northern half of the Cascadia subduction zone is best explained by paleoseismic triggering by great earthquakes. Similarly, we find a likely synchronous record in southern Cascadia, including correlated additional events along the southern margin. We examine the applicability of other regional triggers, such as storm waves, storm surges, hyperpycnal flows, and teletsunami, specifically for the Cascadia margin. The average age of the oldest turbidite emplacement event in the 10-0-ka series is 9,800±~210 cal yr B.P. and the youngest is 270±~120 cal yr B.P., indistinguishable from the A.D. 1700 (250 cal yr B.P.) Cascadia earthquake. The northern events define a great earthquake recurrence of ~500-530 years. The recurrence times and averages are supported by the thickness of hemipelagic sediment deposited between turbidite beds. The southern Oregon and northern California margins represent at least three segments that include all of the northern ruptures, as well as ~22 thinner turbidites of restricted latitude range that are correlated between multiple sites. At least two northern California sites, Trinidad and Eel Canyon/pools, record additional turbidites, which may be a mix of earthquake and sedimentologically or storm-triggered events, particularly during the early Holocene when a close connection existed between these canyons and associated river systems. The combined stratigraphic correlations, hemipelagic analysis, and 14C framework suggest that the Cascadia margin has three rupture modes: (1) 19-20 full-length or nearly full length ruptures; (

  11. Initiation of the Fiordland-Puysegur subduction zone, New Zealand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mao, X.; Gurnis, M.; May, D.

    2014-12-01

    The Australia-Pacific plate boundary south of New Zealand was an active ridge 45 Ma to 30 Ma, generating oceanic crust between the Resolution Rifted Margin and the Campbell Rifted Margin. Referred to as the Macquarie Ridge Complex (MRC), this boundary progressively evolved into a strike-slip boundary from 30 Ma to 20 Ma; the northern segment, the Fiordland-Puysegur subduction zone (FPSZ), has had a substantial transpressional component. Over the last 20 Myr, 600 km of highly oblique plate motion occurred at the MRC, and resulted in a maximum total convergence of 150-200 km at the FPSZ, which some simple models suggested might be near the threshold for a self-sustaining subduction. The morphology of the Puysegur Ridge shows a diagnostic change from uplift to subsidence expected for the transition of a subduction zone from being forced externally to being internally driven by the negative buoyancy of the slab. The large negative gravity anomalies over the Snares Zone, in the middle of the FPSZ, imply strong vertical forces pulling downward the lithosphere. To better understand these observations, we use a viscous flow forward model with a free surface to simulate the geodynamics of the FPSZ since 20 Ma. The forward model describes the dynamics of an incompressible, Stokes fluid. Brittle-ductile behavior of the material within the crust-asthenosphere is modeled by using a fluid viscosity defined via a composite flow law comprised from an Arrhenius and a Drucker-Prager rheology. The well-constrained relative plate motion between the Australian and Pacific plates is used to define a Dirichlet boundary condition for velocity within the lithosphere. In the mantle, we apply the hydrostatic pressure as a normal stress boundary condition. A simplified surface process model consisting of linear diffusion is applied at the free surface to simulate short-range erosion and sedimentation. Our models show that the topographic variations within the Puysegur Ridges may correspond to different stages of subduction initiation. The Snares Zone may be self-sustaining, while the northern and southern parts of the FPSZ are approaching such a self-sustaining threshold.

  12. Sublithospheric Triggers for Episodic Silicic Magmatism in Subduction Zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gerya, T.; Vogt, K.; Schubert, M.

    2014-12-01

    The melt source and ascent mechanisms for crustal-scale silicic magmatism in subduction zones remain a matter of debate. Recent petrological-thermo-mechanical numerical experiments suggest that important physical controls of this process can be of sublithospheric origin. Firstly, deep sources of silicic magma can be related to episodic development of positively buoyant diapiric structures in the mantle wedge originated from deeply subducted rock mélanges (Gerya and Yuen, 2003; Castro and Gerya, 2008). Partial melting of these rapidly ascending lithologically mixed structures can produce silicic magmas with a relatively constant major element composition and variable time-dependent isotopic ratios inherited from the mélange (Vogt et al., 2013). Secondly, episodic injections of subduction-related mantle-derived mafic magmas into a partially molten hot zone of the arc lower crust can drive ascents of pre-existing felsic crustal magmas toward upper crustal levels. The injection of mafic magma induces overpressure in the lower crustal magma reservoir, which increases crustal stresses and triggers development of brittle/plastic fracture zones serving as conduits for the rapid episodic ascent of felsic magmas (Shubert et al., 2013). Our numerical results thus imply that subduction-related sublithospheric magma intrusions into the lower arc crust may both be the prime source for the generation of silicic magmas and the major physical driving mechanism for their episodic ascent toward upper crustal levels. References:Castro, A., and Gerya, T.V., 2008. Magmatic implications of mantle wedge plumes: experimental study. Lithos 103, 138-148. Gerya, T.V., and Yuen, D.A., 2003. Rayleigh-Taylor instabilities from hydration and melting propel "cold plumes" at subduction zones. Earth and Planetary Science Letters 212, 47-62.Schubert, M., Driesner, T., Gerya, T.V., Ulmer, P., 2013. Mafic injection as a trigger for felsic magmatism: A numerical study. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 14, 1910-1928.Vogt, K., Castro, A., and Gerya, T., 2013. Numerical modeling of geochemical variations cause by crustal relamination. Geochemestry Geophysics Geosystems 14, 470-487.

  13. Earthquake swarms in circum-Pacific subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holtkamp, S. G.; Brudzinski, M. R.

    2011-05-01

    We systematically and manually search through clusters of earthquakes along circum-Pacific subduction zones to identify potential earthquake swarms. In total, we find 266 potential earthquake swarms: 180 we classify as megathrust and 68 we classify as volcanic due to their proximity to the megathrust or to volcanoes. We focus on the megathrust swarms and demonstrate that: (1) the number of events in a swarm is not a function of the largest earthquake in the swarm, (2) swarms exhibit an approximately constant rate of seismicity that lasts until after the mean timing of events in the swarm, (3) the timing of the largest earthquake in the sequence is no different than the timing of any other earthquake in the sequence, (4) our catalogs of earthquakes comprising swarms (~ 9000 events) have high b-values (1.5 to 2), and (5) when earthquake swarms are considered as single events using total duration and cumulative moment, they appear to be consistent with the slow earthquake magnitude-duration scaling law presented by Ide et al. (2007). The first three observations, along with the observation that swarms can span very large areas compared to their cumulative seismic moment, argue against static stress triggering as a driving mechanism for earthquake swarms. Along strike propagation velocities are observed for several swarms, showing epicentral propagation of ~ 10 km/day, similar to other documented slow slip events. Together, this evidence implies that aseismic slip along the megathrust is likely an important mechanism for the generation of megathrust earthquake swarms in circum-Pacific subduction zones. We then conduct a comparison of swarms and large megathrust earthquakes, finding evidence that the two are broadly anti-correlated: megathrust segments with large earthquake swarm gaps are more likely to experience large (Mw > 8) megathrust events. We characterize the ubiquity of megathrust swarms at different margins, and suggest that fault properties along Marianas-type margins may allow for earthquake swarms to occur regularly, but other margins may rely on other variables, such as the subduction of a ridge or seamount, to facilitate the generation of megathrust earthquake swarms.

  14. Stability and dynamics of serpentinite layer in subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hilairet, Nadege; Reynard, Bruno

    2009-02-01

    The hydrous phyllosilicate serpentines have a strong influence on subduction zone dynamics because of their high water content and low strength at shallow and intermediate depths. In the absence of data, Newtonian rheology of serpentinites has been assumed in numerical models yet experimental data show that serpentine rheology is best described by a power law rheology recently determined in subduction zone conditions [Hilairet, N., et al., 2007. High-pressure creep of serpentine, interseismic deformation, and initiation of subduction. Science, 318(5858): 1910-1913]. Using a simple 1D model of a serpentinized channel and - as opposed to previous models - in this power law rheology, we examine the influence of channel thickness, temperature and subduction angle on serpentine flow driven by density contrast (serpentinization degree) with the surroundings. At temperatures of 200-500 °C relevant to intermediate depths a fully serpentinized channel is unlikely to be thicker than 2-3 km. For channel thicknesses of 2 km upward velocities are comparable to those using a constant viscosity of 10 18 Pa s. The velocity profile using power law rheology shows shear zones at the edges of the channel and a low strain rate region at its centre consistent with the frequent observation of weakly deformed HP-rocks. Upward velocities estimated for channels 1 to 3 km thick are comparable to the serpentinization rates for maximum estimates of fluid velocities within shear zones in the literature. Competition between the upward flow and serpentinization may lead to intermittent behavior with alternating growth periods and thinning by exhumation. At shallower levels the thickness allowed for a channel may be up to ~ 8-10 km if the rheology has a higher dependence on stress. We therefore propose that the exhumation of HP oceanic units in serpentinite channels is organized in two levels, the deepest and fastest motion being driven by density contrast with the surrounding mantle and the shallowest circulation being driven by forced return flow. The thicknesses estimated here for serpentinized layers at intermediated depths are similar to the precision of seismic studies. The deepest serpentinite channel may thus be difficult to detect by seismic methods, but it will have a strong influence on the mechanical coupling between the slab and mantle wedge.

  15. New seismic images of the cascadia subduction zone from cruise SO 108-ORWELL

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Flueh, E.R.; Fisher, M.A.; Bialas, J.; Childs, J. R.; Klaeschen, D.; Kukowski, Nina; Parsons, T.; Scholl, D. W.; ten Brink, U.; Trehu, A.M.; Vidal, N.

    1998-01-01

    In April and May 1996, a geophysical study of the Cascadia continental margin off Oregon and Washington was conducted aboard the German R/V Sonne. This cooperative experiment by GEOMAR and the USGS acquired wide-angle reflection and refraction seismic data, using ocean-bottom seismometers (OBS) and hydrophones (OBH), and multichannel seismic reflection (MCS) data. The main goal of this experiment was to investigate the internal structure and associated earthquake hazard of the Cascadia subduction zone and to image the downgoing plate. Coincident MCS and wide-angle profiles along two tracks are presented here. The plate boundary has been imaged precisely beneath the wide accretionary wedge close to shore at c13km depth. Thus, the downgoing plate dips more shallowly than previously assumed. The dip of the plate changes from 2?? to 4?? at the eastern boundary of the wedge on the northern profile, whereas approximately 3km of sediment is entering the subduction zone. On the southern profile, where the incoming sedimentary section is about 2.2km thick, the plate dips about 0.5?? to 1.5?? near the deformation front and increases to 3.5?? further landwards. On both profiles, the deformation of the accretionary wedge has produced six ridges on the seafloor, three of which represent active faulting, as indicated by growth folding. The ridges are bordered by landward verging faults which reach as deep as the top of the oceanic basement. Thus, the entire incoming sediment package is being accreted. At least two phases of accretion are evident, and the rocks of the older accretionary phase(s) forms the backstop for the younger phase, which started around 1.5 Ma ago. This documents that the 30 to 50km wide frontal part of the accretionary wedge, which is characterized by landward vergent thrusts, is a Pleistocene feature which was formed in response to the high input of sediment building the fans during glacial periods. Velocities increase quite rapidly within the wedge, both landward and downward. At the toe of the deformation front, velocities are higher than 4.0 km/s, indicating extensive dewatering of deep, oceanic sediment. Further landward, considerable velocity variation is found, which indicates major breaks throughout the accretionary history.

  16. Geoid anomalies in the vicinity of subduction zones

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mcadoo, D. C.

    1980-01-01

    The regional geoid of the southwest Pacific is matched reasonably well by results from a model of the upper mantle density structure (including slabs) associated with subduction zones of the region. Estimates of the geoid are obtained from Geos-3 and Seasat radar altimeter data. These data are very well suited to the task of detecting intermediate wavelength (600-4000 km) geopotential variations. Actually, subducting slabs can be expected to produce primarily intermediate and longer wavelength variations. Gravimetric profiles across trench/island arc complexes resolve primarily short wavelengths. The model represents subducting slabs as thin surfaces of anomalous mass per unit area. These surfaces are positioned using published seismicity results which detail the configuration of the Benioff zones. Crustal effects are ignored. Effects due to the contrast between the young thermal lithosphere of the behind-arc regions (marginal basins) and the older lithosphere seaward of the trench are modelled. Results indicate that the New Hebrides slab possesses an average areal density anomaly of about 300,000 gm/sq cm. This is about three times that which is estimated for the Tonga-Kermadec slab. Additional modelling suggests that slabs worldwide may be an important source of large, long wavelength gravity highs; i.e., they may contribute substantially to geopotential power of harmonic degree as low as three or four up to twenty or more.

  17. Teleseismic shear wave tomography of the Japan subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Asamori, Koichi; Zhao, Dapeng

    2015-12-01

    We present a high-resolution shear wave tomography of the Japan subduction zone down to a depth of 700 km, which is determined by inverting a large number of high-quality S-wave arrival-time data from local earthquakes and teleseismic events. The subducting Pacific and Philippine Sea (PHS) slabs are revealed clearly as high-velocity (high-V) zones, whereas low-velocity (low-V) anomalies are revealed in the mantle wedge above the two slabs. The PHS slab has subducted aseismically down to a depth of 480 km under the Japan Sea and to a depth of 540 km under the Tsushima Strait. A window is revealed within the aseismic PHS slab, being consistent with P-wave tomography. Prominent low-V and high-Poisson's ratio (?) anomalies exist below the PHS slab and above the Pacific slab, which reflect hot and wet mantle upwelling caused by the joint effect of deep dehydration of the Pacific slab and convective circulation process in the mantle wedge above the Pacific slab. The hot and wet mantle upwelling has caused the complex geometry and structure of the PHS slab in SW Japan, and contributed to the Quaternary volcanism along the Japan Sea coast. In eastern Japan, low-V zones are revealed at depths of 200-700 km below the Pacific slab, which may reflect hot upwelling from the lower mantle or even the core-mantle boundary.

  18. A Computer-Based Subduction-Zone-Earthquake Exercise for Introductory-Geology Classes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shea, James Herbert

    1991-01-01

    Describes the author's computer-based program for a subduction-zone-earthquake exercise. Instructions for conducting the activity and obtaining the program from the author are provided. Written in IBM QuickBasic. (PR)

  19. On the mechanism of seismic decoupling and back are spreading at subduction zones

    SciTech Connect

    Scholz, C.H.; Campos, J.

    1995-11-10

    This report discusses a force model for the mechanics of seismic decoupling and back arc spreading at subduction zones. This model predicts three regimes: seismically coupled compressional arcs; seismically decoupled extensional arcs; and strongly extensional arcs with back arc spreading.

  20. High-temperature metamorphism during extreme thinning of the continental crust: a reappraisal of the North Pyrenean passive paleomargin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clerc, C.; Lahfid, A.; Monié, P.; Lagabrielle, Y.; Chopin, C.; Poujol, M.; Boulvais, P.; Ringenbach, J.-C.; Masini, E.; de St Blanquat, M.

    2015-06-01

    An increasing number of field examples in mountain belts show that the formation of passive margins during extreme continent thinning may occur under conditions of high to very high thermal gradient beneath a thin cover of syn-rift sediments. Orogenic belts resulting from the tectonic inversion of distal margins and regions of exhumed continental mantle may exhibit high-temperature, low-pressure (HT-LP) metamorphism and coeval syn-extensional, ductile deformation. Recent studies have shown that the northern flank of the Pyrenean belt, especially the North Pyrenean Zone, is one of the best examples of such inverted hot, passive margin. In this study, we provide a map of HT-LP metamorphism based on a data set of more than 100 peak-temperature estimates obtained using Raman spectroscopy of the carbonaceous material (RSCM). This data set is completed by previous PT (pressure and temperature) estimates based on mineral assemblages, and new 40Ar-39Ar (amphibole, micas) and U-Pb (titanite) ages from metamorphic and magmatic rocks of the North Pyrenean Zone. The implications on the geological evolution of the Cretaceous Pyrenean paleomargins are discussed. Ages range mainly from 110 to 90 Ma, and no westward or eastward propagation of the metamorphism and magmatism can be clearly identified. In contrast, the new data reveal a progressive propagation of the thermal anomaly from the base to the surface of the continental crust. Focusing on the key localities of the Mauléon basin, Arguenos-Moncaup, Lherz, Boucheville and the Bas-Agly, we analyze the thermal conditions prevailing during the Cretaceous crustal thinning. The results are synthetized into a series of three regional thematic maps and into two detailed maps of the Arguenos-Moncaup and Lherz areas. The results indicate a first-order control of the thermal gradient by the intensity of crustal thinning. The highest grades of metamorphism are intimately associated with the areas where subcontinental mantle rocks have been unroofed or exhumed.

  1. Thermal Evolution of Juvenile Subduction Zones ' New Constraints from Lu-Hf Geochronology on HP oceanic rocks (Halilba?i, Central Anatolia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pourteau, Amaury; Scherer, Erik; Schmidt, Alexander; Bast, Rebecca

    2015-04-01

    The thermal structure of subduction zones plays a key role on mechanical and chemical processes taking place along the slab-mantle interface. Until now, changes through time of this thermal structure have been explored mostly by the means of numerical simulations. However, both "warm" (i.e., epidote-bearing), and "cold" (i.e., lawsonite-bearing) HP oceanic rocks have been reported in some fossil subduction complexes exposed at the Earth's surface (e.g., Franciscan Complex, California; Rio San Juan Complex, Hispañola; Halilba?? Unit, Central Anatolia). These a-priori "incompatible" rocks witness different thermal stages of ancient subduction zones and their study might provide complementary constraints to numerical models. To decipher the meaning of these contrasting metamorphic rocks in the Halilba?? Unit, we are carrying out Lu-Hf geochronology on garnet (grt) and lws from a variety of HP oceanic rocks, as well as the metamorphic sole of the overlying ophiolite. We selected five samples that are representative of the variety of metamorphic evolutions (i.e. peak conditions and P-T paths) encountered in this area. Preliminary analyses yielded 110 Ma (grt-hbl isochron) for a sub-ophiolitic grt amphibolite; 92 Ma (grt-omp) for an eclogite with prograde and retrograde ep; 90 Ma (grt-omp) for an eclogitic metabasite with prograde ep and retrograde ep+lws; 87 Ma (grt-gln) for a lws eclogite with prograde ep; and 86 Ma (grt-gln) for a blueschist with prograde and retrograde lws. These ages are mainly two-point isochrons. Further-refined data will be presented at the EGU General Assembly 2015, in Vienna. The consistent younging trend from "warm" to "cold" metamorphic rocks revealed by these first-order results points to metamorphic-sole formation during the initiation of intra-oceanic subduction at ~110 Ma, and subsequent cooling of the slab-mantle interface between 92 and 86 Ma. Therefore, the contrasting metamorphic evolutions encountered in the Halilba?? Unit record the progressive thermal maturation of the juvenile Neotethyan subduction zone. This period of ~23 myr between subduction initiation and thermal "steady state" is significantly shorter than that obtained for the Rio San Juan Complex (~60 myr; Krebs et al. 2008, Lithos, 103, 106-137), but compares well with that for the Franciscan Complex (~22 myr; Anczkiewicz et al. 2004, EPSL, 225, 147-161) and falls in the range predicted in numerical simulations (e.g., Gerya et al. 2002, Tectonics, 21/6, 1056).

  2. Slab dehydration and fluid-producing metamorphic reactions in early subduction stages: the record of the metamorphic sole of the Mont Albert ophiolite (Quebec, Canada)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jewison, Ella; Soret, Mathieu; Dubacq, Benoït; Agard, Philippe; Labrousse, Loïc

    2015-04-01

    Metamorphic soles found at the base of obducted ophiolites provide valuable information on the early history of the subduction / obduction system. Metamorphic soles are characterised by rocks originating from the ocean floor (basalts and sediments in variable proportions) metamorphosed up to granulite facies, where the intensity of metamorphism increases to the top of the unit, towards the contact with peridotite. Their mafic and less frequently pelitic lithologies make them sensitive recorders of their pressure-temperature conditions of crystallization and allow radiometric dating. In addition, metamorphic soles have directly witnessed slab dehydration as they underwent similar fluid-producing metamorphic reactions before being accreted to the mantle wedge peridotites (i.e. before "underplating"). The mechanisms of underplating remain uncertain, because of the somewhat obscure link between weakening through fluid production and hardening via garnet crystallization, with direct consequences on the rheology of the plate interface. In this study, we document fluid-producing reactions occurring during the prograde history of the metamorphic sole of the Taconian (ca. 460 Ma) ophiolite from Mont Albert (Quebec, Canada). This metamorphic sole shows variably metamorphosed mafic and pelitic rocks with metamorphic gradients over the scale of 10 metres, with clinopyroxene-garnet-amphibole granulite facies mafic rocks at the contact with the overlying peridotites. Evidences of melting of pelitic lithologies increase towards the contact, and no remains of metapelites have been found within about 20 m from the contact. Fluid channelization and melt migration is evidenced by decimetric dykes and veins. Away from the contact, metamorphism intensity gradually decreases to greenschist facies with abundant hydrated silicates. The aim of the study is to provide constraints (i) on the nature of the fluids produced (aqueous versus melt), (ii) on their composition and (iii) on the pressure-temperature conditions of their production. This will allow a better understanding of the rheological behaviour of subducting slabs in subduction zones and of amphibolites in the lower continental crust.

  3. Links between fluid circulation, temperature, and metamorphism in subducting slabs

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Spinelli, G.A.; Wang, K.

    2009-01-01

    The location and timing of metamorphic reactions in subducting lithosph??re are influenced by thermal effects of fluid circulation in the ocean crust aquifer. Fluid circulation in subducting crust extracts heat from the Nankai subduction zone, causing the crust to pass through cooler metamorphic faci??s than if no fluid circulation occurs. This fluid circulation shifts the basalt-to-eclogite transition and the associated slab dehydration 14 km deeper (35 km farther landward) than would be predicted with no fluid flow. For most subduction zones, hydrothermal cooling of the subducting slab will delay eclogitization relative to estimates made without considering fluid circulation. Copyright 2009 by the American Geophysical Union.

  4. Earth's free oscillations recorded by free-fall OBS ocean-bottom seismometers at the Lesser Antilles subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bécel, A.; Laigle, M.; Diaz, J.; Montagner, J.-P.; Hirn, A.

    2011-12-01

    Three unburied ocean bottom seismometers (OBS) equipped with Trillium 240 s broad-band seismometers recorded spheroidal free oscillations of the Earth out to periods over 1000 s period, for the M = 8.1, April 1, 2007 Solomon Islands earthquake. In contrast to broadband observatories of the global network that operate in quiet continental locations, these instruments were dropped on the several-km thick layer of sediments of the forearc and accretionary wedge of the Lesser Antilles subduction zone. Furthermore, a high ambient noise level due to the ocean surface infragravity waves is expected to cover the frequency band of Earth's normal modes band when recorded at these sites. In spite of these hostile environmental conditions, the frequency of clearly defined peaks of the Earth's normal modes were measured after the earthquake. This suggests that the recording of normal modes and long period waves can be extended to parts of the hitherto inaccessible ocean with currently available OBS technology.

  5. The earliest mantle fabrics formed during subduction zone infancy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harigane, Y.; Michibayashi, K.; Morishita, T.; Tani, K.; Dick, H. J.; Ishizuka, O.

    2013-12-01

    Harzburgites obtained from the oldest crust-mantle section in the Philippine Sea plate along the landward slope of the southern Izu-Ogasawara Trench in Izu-Bonin-Mariana arc, that explored by Dive 7K417 of the ROV Kaiko 7000II during R/V Kairei cruise KR08-07, and Dredge 31 of R/V Hakuho-Maru cruise KH07-02, operated by the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology. Harzburgites preserve mantle fabrics formed during the infancy of the subduction zone; that is during the initial stages of Pacific plate subduction beneath the Philippine Sea plate. The main constituent minerals of harzburgites are olivine (15.6%), orthopyroxene (Opx; 13.1%) and spinel (0.5%), along with serpentine (70.8%) as a secondary mineral. Microstructure shows inequigranular interlobate (or protogranular) textures. There is no secondary deformation such as porphyroclastic or fine-grained textures. The secondary serpentine shows undeformed mesh texture in the harzburgites. Harzburgites have crystal preferred orientation patterns in olivine (001)[100] and Opx (100)[001]. The mineral chemistry in harzburgites have high olivine forsterite (90.6-92.1 mol.%) and NiO (~0.4 wt%) contents, low Opx Al2O3 (<~1.5 wt%) and Na2O (<0.03 wt%), and high spinel Cr# (65-67). This has the characteristics of residual peridotites, whereas the dunites, obtained from the same location as the harzburgites, provide evidence for the earliest stages of arc volcanism during the inception of subduction. Therefore, we propose that the (001)[100] olivine patterns began forming in immature fore-arc mantle with an increase in slab-derived hydrous fluids during the initial stages of subduction in in situ oceanic island arc.

  6. Multiple garnet growth in garnet-kyanite-staurolite gneiss, Pangong metamorphic complex, Ladakh Himalaya: New constraints on tectonic setting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thanh, N. X.; Sajeev, K.; Itaya, T.; Windley, B. F.

    2011-12-01

    Garnet-kyanite-staurolite gneiss in the Pangong complex, Ladakh Himalaya, contains porphyroblastic euhedral garnets, blades of kyanite and resorbed staurolite surrounded by a fine-grained muscovite-biotite matrix associated with a leucogranite layer. Sillimanite is absent. The gneiss contains two generations of garnet in cores and rims that represent two stages of metamorphism. Garnet cores are extremely rich in Mn (XSps = 0.35-0.38) and poor in Fe (XAlm = 0.40-0.45), whereas rims are relatively Mn-poor (XSps = 0.07-0.08), and rich in Fe (XAlm = 0.75-0.77). We suggest that garnet cores formed during prograde metamorphism in a subduction zone followed by abrupt exhumation, during early collision of the Ladakh arc and Karakoram block. The subsequent India-Asia continental collision subducted the metamorphic rocks to a mid-crustal level, where the garnet rims overgrew the Mn-rich cores at ca. 680 °C and ca. 8.5 kbar. PT calculations were estimated from phase diagrams calculated using a calculated bulk chemical composition in the Mn-NCKFMASHT system for the garnet-kyanite-staurolite-bearing assemblage. Muscovites from the metamorphic rocks and associated leucogranites have consistent K-Ar ages (ca. 10 Ma), closely related to activation of the Karakoram fault in the Pangong metamorphic complex. These ages indicate the contemporaneity of the exhumation of the metamorphic rocks and the cooling of the leucogranites.

  7. Transdimensional imaging of random velocity inhomogeneities in Nankai subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takahashi, T.; Obana, K.; Yamamoto, Y.; Kaiho, Y.; Nakanishi, A.; Kodaira, S.; Kaneda, Y.

    2014-12-01

    The Nankai trough in southwestern Japan is a convergent margin where the Philippine Sea plate is subducting beneath the Eurasian plate. We have conducted five seismic observations with ocean bottom seismograms (OBSs) from 2008 to 2012 to elucidate detailed seismic structures and its relations with fault segments of large earthquakes. These observations covered the entire area of the Nankai trough, but quantity and quality of data are not spatially uniform because of different observing lengths and various noises. Waveform data of OBSs suggests variously-sized anomalies of random velocity inhomogeneity (i.e., scattering strength) in this subduction zone. To clarify details of random inhomogeneity structures, we conducted a transdimensional imaging of random inhomogeneities by means of the reversible jump Markov Chain Monte Carlo (rjMCMC) without assuming smooth spatial distributions of unknown parameters. We applied the rjMCMC for the inversion of peak delay times of S-wave envelopes at 4-8, 8-16, and 16-32 Hz, where the peak delay time is defined as the time lag from the S-wave onset to its maximal amplitude arrival. This delay time mainly reflects the accumulated multiple forward scattering effect due to random inhomogeneities. We assumed the von Karman type power spectral density function (PSDF) for random velocity fluctuation, and estimated two parameters related with the PSDF at large wavenumber. Study area is partitioned by discrete Voronoi cells of which number and spatial sizes are variable. Estimated random inhomogeneities show clear lateral variations along the Nankai trough. The strongest inhomogeneity on the Nankai trough was found near the subducted Kyushu-Palau ridge that is located at the western margin of the fault segments. We also find a horizontal variation of inhomogeneity along the non-volcanic tremor zone. Relatively strong inhomogeneities in this tremor zone were imaged beneath west Shikoku and Kii-Peninsula. These anomalies were not clearly imaged in our previous study because we had to impose smoothing constraints. Our result implies that transdimensional imaging can be used to reveal detailed seismic structures from spatially non-uniform data.

  8. Multiscale seismic imaging of the Western-Pacific subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, D.

    2011-12-01

    We used multiscale seismic tomography to determine the detailed 3-D structure of the crust and mantle under the Western-Pacific subduction zone. The subducting Pacific and Philippine Sea (PHS) slabs are imaged clearly from their entering the mantle at the oceanic trenches to their reaching the mantle transition zone and finally to the core-mantle boundary (CMB). High-resolution local tomography of Northeast Japan has imaged the shallow portion of the slab from the Japan Trench down to about 200 km depth under Japan Sea. The 3-D Vp and Vs structures of the forearc region under the Pacific Ocean are constrained by locating suboceanic events precisely with sP depth phases. Strong structural heterogeneity is revealed in the megathrust zone under the forearc region, and there is a good correlation between the heterogeneity and the distribution of large thrust earthquakes including the great 2011 Tohoku-oki earthquake (Mw 9.0). A joint inversion of local and teleseismic data imaged the subducting Pacific slab down to 670 km depth under the Japan Islands and the Japan Sea. The PHS slab is detected down to 500 km depth under SW Japan. A mantle upwelling is found under SW Japan that rises from about 400 km depth right above the Pacific slab up to the PHS slab. Regional and global tomography revealed the Pacific slab that is stagnant in the mantle transition zone under Eastern China. A big mantle wedge (BMW) has formed in the upper mantle above the stagnant slab. Convective circulations in the BMW and deep dehydration of the stagnant slab may have caused the intraplate volcanoes in NE Asia, such as the Changbai and Wudalianchi volcanoes. The active Tengchong volcanism in SW China is caused by a similar process in the BMW above the subducting Burma (or Indian) slab. Global tomography shows pieces of fast anomalies in the middle and lower mantle as well as in the D" layer above the CMB, suggesting that the stagnant slab finally collapses down to the lower mantle and CMB as a result of very large gravitational instability from phase transitions. Prominent slow anomalies are also revealed in the mantle under the subducting slabs, which may represent either mantle plumes or upwelling flows associated with the deep subduction of the slabs.

  9. Numerical modeling of fluid migration in subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walter, Marius J.; Quinteros, Javier; Sobolev, Stephan V.

    2015-04-01

    It is well known that fluids play a crucial role in subduction evolution. For example, excess mechanical weakening along tectonic interfaces, due to excess fluid pressure, may enable oceanic subduction. Hence, the fluid content seems to be a critical parameter for subduction initiation. Studies have also shown a correlation between the location of slab dehydration and intermediate seismic activity. Furthermore, expelled fluids from the subduction slab affect the melting temperature, consequently, contributing to partial melting in the wedge above the downgoing plate, and resulting in chemical changes in earth interior and extensive volcanism. In summary, fluids have a great impact on tectonic processes and therefore should be incorporated into geodynamic numerical models. Here we use existing approaches to couple and solve fluid flow equations in the SLIM-3D thermo-mechanical code. SLIM-3D is a three-dimensional thermo-mechanical code capable of simulating lithospheric deformation with elasto-visco-plastic rheology. It incorporates an arbitrary Lagrangian Eulerian formulation, free surface, and changes in density and viscosity, due to endothermic and exothermic phase transitions. It has been successfully applied to model geodynamic processes at different tectonic settings, including subduction zones. However, although SLIM-3D already includes many features, fluid migration has not been incorporated into the model yet. To this end, we coupled solid and fluid flow assuming that fluids flow through a porous and deformable solid. Thereby, we introduce a two-phase flow into the model, in which the Stokes flow is coupled with the Darcy law for fluid flow. This system of equations becomes, however, nonlinear, because the rheology and permeability are depended on the porosity (fluid fraction of the matrix). Ultimately, the evolution of porosity is governed by the compaction pressure and the advection of the porous solid. We show the details of our implementation of the fluid flow into the existing thermo-mechanical finite element code and present first results of benchmarks (e.g. solitary wave) and experiments. We are especially interested in the coupling of subduction processes and the evolution of the magmatic arc. Thereby, we focus on the key factors controlling magma emplacement and its influence on subduction processes.

  10. Structure and Deformation of the Hikurangi-Kermadec Subduction Zone - Transitions Revealed by Seismic Wide-angle Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scherwath, M.; Kopp, H.; Flueh, E. R.; Henrys, S. A.; Sutherland, R.

    2008-12-01

    The Hikurangi-Kermadec subduction zone northeast of New Zealand represents an ideal target to study lateral variations of subduction zone processes. The incoming Pacific plate changes from being a large igneous province, called the Hikurangi Plateau, in the south to normal oceanic plate north of the Rapuhia Scarp. The overriding Australian plate of continental character in the south, forming the North Island of New Zealand, and changes to an island arc in the north. Further lateral variability exists in changes in volcanic and hydro-thermal activity, transitions from accretion to subduction erosion, backarc spreading and rifting, and is accompanied by northward increasing seismicity. As part of the MANGO project (Marine Geoscientific Investigations on the Input and Output of the Kermadec Subduction Zone), four marine geophysical transects of largely seismic reflection and refraction data provide constraints on the upper lithospheric structures across the Hikurangi-Kermadec Trench between 29-38 deg S. On MANGO profile 1 in the south, the initially shallow subduction of the incoming plateau coincides with crustal underplating beneath the East Cape ridge. To the west lies the 100 km wide and over 10 km deep Raukumara Basin. Seismic velocities of the upper mantle of both plates are around 8 km/s and are considered normal. In contrast, on MANGO profile 4, about 1000 km to the north around the volcanically active Raoul Island, the incoming oceanic crust appears to bend considerably steeper and thus causes a 50 km narrower forearc with a smaller forearc basin. Furthermore, the upper mantle velocities in both plates are relatively low (7.4-7.7 km/s), likely indicating strong bending related deformation of the incoming plate and thermal activity within the arc possibly due to spreading. The central two transects MANGO 2 and 3, though without data coverage of the structure of the incoming plate, are more similar to MANGO 4. The arc regions appear to be strongly affected by the activity of the arc. The arc crust of the northern MANGO 3 becomes significantly thinner in the backarc region due to extension, whereas the data from MANGO 2 likely show thermal activity from the adjacent arc volcanism.

  11. Reevaluating carbon fluxes in subduction zones, what goes down, mostly comes up

    PubMed Central

    Kelemen, Peter B.; Manning, Craig E.

    2015-01-01

    Carbon fluxes in subduction zones can be better constrained by including new estimates of carbon concentration in subducting mantle peridotites, consideration of carbonate solubility in aqueous fluid along subduction geotherms, and diapirism of carbon-bearing metasediments. Whereas previous studies concluded that about half the subducting carbon is returned to the convecting mantle, we find that relatively little carbon may be recycled. If so, input from subduction zones into the overlying plate is larger than output from arc volcanoes plus diffuse venting, and substantial quantities of carbon are stored in the mantle lithosphere and crust. Also, if the subduction zone carbon cycle is nearly closed on time scales of 5–10 Ma, then the carbon content of the mantle lithosphere + crust + ocean + atmosphere must be increasing. Such an increase is consistent with inferences from noble gas data. Carbon in diamonds, which may have been recycled into the convecting mantle, is a small fraction of the global carbon inventory. PMID:26048906

  12. Reevaluating carbon fluxes in subduction zones, what goes down, mostly comes up.

    PubMed

    Kelemen, Peter B; Manning, Craig E

    2015-07-28

    Carbon fluxes in subduction zones can be better constrained by including new estimates of carbon concentration in subducting mantle peridotites, consideration of carbonate solubility in aqueous fluid along subduction geotherms, and diapirism of carbon-bearing metasediments. Whereas previous studies concluded that about half the subducting carbon is returned to the convecting mantle, we find that relatively little carbon may be recycled. If so, input from subduction zones into the overlying plate is larger than output from arc volcanoes plus diffuse venting, and substantial quantities of carbon are stored in the mantle lithosphere and crust. Also, if the subduction zone carbon cycle is nearly closed on time scales of 5-10 Ma, then the carbon content of the mantle lithosphere + crust + ocean + atmosphere must be increasing. Such an increase is consistent with inferences from noble gas data. Carbon in diamonds, which may have been recycled into the convecting mantle, is a small fraction of the global carbon inventory. PMID:26048906

  13. Stress orientations in subduction zones and the strength of subduction megathrust faults

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hardebeck, Jeanne L.

    2015-09-01

    Subduction zone megathrust faults produce most of the world’s largest earthquakes. Although the physical properties of these faults are difficult to observe directly, their frictional strength can be estimated indirectly by constraining the orientations of the stresses that act on them. A global investigation of stress orientations in subduction zones finds that the maximum compressive stress axis plunges systematically trenchward, consistently making an angle of 45° to 60° with respect to the subduction megathrust fault. These angles indicate that the megathrust fault is not substantially weaker than its surroundings. Together with several other lines of evidence, this implies that subduction zone megathrusts are weak faults in a low-stress environment. The deforming outer accretionary wedge may decouple the stress state along the megathrust from the constraints of the free surface.

  14. Stress orientations in subduction zones and the strength of subduction megathrust faults.

    PubMed

    Hardebeck, Jeanne L

    2015-09-11

    Subduction zone megathrust faults produce most of the world's largest earthquakes. Although the physical properties of these faults are difficult to observe directly, their frictional strength can be estimated indirectly by constraining the orientations of the stresses that act on them. A global investigation of stress orientations in subduction zones finds that the maximum compressive stress axis plunges systematically trenchward, consistently making an angle of 45° to 60° with respect to the subduction megathrust fault. These angles indicate that the megathrust fault is not substantially weaker than its surroundings. Together with several other lines of evidence, this implies that subduction zone megathrusts are weak faults in a low-stress environment. The deforming outer accretionary wedge may decouple the stress state along the megathrust from the constraints of the free surface. PMID:26359399

  15. Dehydrated fluid and seismic deformation in deep subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Okamoto, K.

    2013-12-01

    It has been considered that there is a correlation between the double seismic zone and metamorphic dehydration reaction in deep slab. The location of the upper limits of the upper seismic plane correspond to metamorphic facies boundary where H2O contents change in subducting crust; numerous earthquakes from 60 to 110 km depths in the lawsonite-blueschist facies, many earthquakes in the lower crust of the slab from 110 to 150 km depths in the lawsonite-amphibole eclogite facies and few earthquakes in the lawsonite eclogite facies. There is still minor amount of H2O present in the lawsonite eclogite facies. The dehydrated fluid is not the only trigger to cause slab earthquake. Recent petrological researches have revealed that both blueschist and lawsonite eclogite are stable in the same pressure and temperature condition because chemical variation including water content creates both lawsonite-amphibole eclogite and lawsonite eclogite in different portion of subducted crust. It would cause stress localization and hydro-fracturing in the slab in the shallower part (depths ranging from 60 to 110 km) and lawsonite amphibole eclogite in the lower crust in the deeper part (from 110 to 150 km depth) in the upper seismic plane. The lower plane of the double seismic zone, is considered to be related to dehydration reaction in the slab. Metamorphic olivine has been described in vein from serpentinite mylonite. The vein was created by dehydration reaction to decompose antigorite under shear deformation. In the cold slab beneath Tohoku arc, the reaction has a negative slope in P-T space and forms olivine+orthopyroxene+fluid. In the warm slab beneath SW Japan, the reaction has a positive slope in P-T space and forms olivine+talc+fluid. The above these dehydration reactions are well-described in the serpentinite from high P/T metamorphic belt from Spain, and Italy, respectively.

  16. Tomography, Dynamical Modeling and the Geologic History of the Subduction Zone Around the Japanese Islands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Honda, S.

    2014-12-01

    Since the subduction zone is one of the most geologically active regions in the world, it has attracted much attention from the various fields of the earth science. In this presentation, we try to combine the results and knowledge of seismic tomography, geodynamic modeling and the geologic history of the subduction zone around the Japanese Islands to constrain the nature of the subduction zone there. For this purpose, first, we estimate the cold temperature anomaly by converting the fast velocity anomaly of GAP_P4 model [Fukao & Obayashi, 2013] to the cold temperature anomaly using the recent estimate of d(ln Vp)/dT by Karato [2008]. The magnitude of the anomaly is constrained by the work on the relation between the theoretical estimate of temperature and the seismicity in the subducting slab [Emmerson & McKenzie, 2007]. We find that, although the velocity anomaly itself does not show a significant high velocity anomaly just below the stagnated slab, the estimated temperature shows rather continuous cold anomaly from the upper to the lower mantle. This continuous feature is consistent with the recent results of geodynamic modeling of the subduction zone. However, we still see a significant thinning or an absence of the slab just below the stagnated slab in the transition zone. This is more evident in other tomographic models. Geodynamical modeling of subduction, especially, the stagnation of the slab in the transition zone shows that the slab behavior strongly depends on the geological settings of subduction zone such as the rollback of trench. To understand the present feature of the slab revealed by the seismic tomography, we construct a simple half-kinematic model of subduction zone by taking into account the geological settings, that is, the opening of the Japan Sea. We find that the slab similar to the present image is obtained in terms of disruption of the slab suggesting that it occurred during the opening of the Japan Sea.

  17. Incoming plate faulting in the Northern and Western Pacific and implications for subduction zone water budgets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Emry, Erica L.; Wiens, Douglas A.

    2015-03-01

    The greatest uncertainty in the amount of water input into the Earth at subduction zones results from poor constraints on the degree of mantle serpentinization in the incoming plate. Recent studies suggest that the depth of serpentinization within the incoming plate mantle is likely controlled by the depth of extensional faulting caused by lithospheric bending at the outer rise and trench. We explore the maximum depth of extension within the incoming plate at Northwestern Pacific subduction zones in order to estimate the depth limit of serpentinization and to identify any significant variation between subduction zone segments. We relocate trench earthquakes to identify which events occurred within the incoming plate and determine accurate depths for 63 incoming plate earthquakes occurring during 1988-2011 by inverting teleseismic broadband P and SH waveforms. We observe that the top 10-15 km of the incoming plate mantle experiences extensional faulting at all of the subduction zones with a reasonable sample of earthquakes; 60% of the total number of extensional earthquakes occur at crustal depths or within the top 5 km of the incoming plate mantle, 80% occur above 10 km within the mantle, and 95% occur above 15 km. There is evidence for variation throughout the different regions of study, for example extensional earthquakes occur down to 20 km below the crust in the western Aleutians and Izu-Bonin. We propose that the incoming plate mantle is most strongly hydrated in the upper 5 km, and that partial serpentinization exists regionally within the incoming plate mantle to ?15 km. Making reasonable assumptions about the degree of serpentinization and incorporating previous estimates of crustal water, we calculate that the total water carried into the Northern and Western Pacific subduction zones is generally higher than previous estimates, and is approximately 4- 6 ×108 Tg /Myr, or ? 45- 70 ×103 Tg /Myr per kilometer of subduction zone.

  18. Boninites as windows into trace element mobility in subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    König, Stephan; Münker, Carsten; Schuth, Stephan; Luguet, Ambre; Hoffmann, J. Elis; Kuduon, Jonathan

    2010-01-01

    Boninites are subduction-related rocks originating from re-melting of highly depleted mantle sources left after extraction of tholeiitic melts. Due to their depleted nature, the incompatible trace element inventory of boninites is virtually entirely inherited from slab components without a significant contribution from the refractory mantle wedge. Thus, boninites constitute an excellent window into processes controlling trace element mobilization at the slab-mantle wedge interface. In order to constrain the behaviour of trace elements in subduction zones with a special emphasis on high field strength elements, we analyzed low-Ca boninites and associated tholeiitic basalts from Cape Vogel, Papua New Guinea (PNG) and compare them with compositions of high-Ca boninites and associated tholeiitic basalts from Cyprus. High-precision HFSE (Nb, Ta, Zr, Hf, W) concentration data of the boninites and associated tholeiitic basalts were obtained by isotope dilution. Major, trace element, and Sr-Nd-Hf-Pb isotope compositions clearly document a significant contribution of slab-derived melts involved in the petrogenesis of the PNG boninites, whereas only fluid-like subduction components were involved in the petrogenesis of the PNG basalts and the Cyprus suite. Low-Ca boninites from PNG are derived from a more refractory mantle source (˜21% depletion) than the high-Ca boninites from Cyprus (˜11% depletion) and their respective tholeiitic precursors (<10% depletion). In agreement with the more depleted nature of their mantle source, boninites exhibit a significantly stronger overprint by slab components. High-precision HFSE data indicate that, in comparison to LILE, a somewhat lower but measurable mobilization of all investigated HFSE in both slab-derived fluids and melts is evident. Modelling calculations demonstrate that the subduction components dominate the LILE budget and also largely control LREE and HFSE abundances in the boninite sources. Notably, the increasing influence of slab-derived fluids results in a decrease of the negative Nb-Ta anomaly, most likely reflecting a similar mobility of Nb-Ta and LREE at higher pressures near the critical point of fluid-melt miscibility. Ratios of Zr/Hf and Nb/Ta in the melt-like slab components dominating in the sources of the PNG boninites were probably fractionated in equilibrium with garnet-amphibolitic mafic oceanic crust. HFSE ratios in the Cyprus boninites are best explained by dehydration of subducted pelagic sediments in the absence of Ti-rich phases such as rutile. Our results also confirm previous assertions that the mobility of HFSE decreases in the order Sb > W-Mo > Nb-Ta > Zr-Hf. Furthermore, Mo-W systematics may provide a potential novel tracer for the amount, composition and redox state of subducted pelagic sediments that contribute to the geochemical budget of intra-oceanic arc systems.

  19. Structure and seismic activity of the Lesser Antilles subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Evain, M.; Galve, A.; Charvis, P.; Laigle, M.; Ruiz Fernandez, M.; Kopp, H.; Hirn, A.; Flueh, E. R.; Thales Scientific Party

    2011-12-01

    Several active and passive seismic experiments conducted in 2007 in the framework of the European program "Thales Was Right" and of the French ANR program "Subsismanti" provided a unique set of geophysical data highlighting the deep structure of the central part of the Lesser Antilles subduction zone, offshore Dominica and Martinique, and its seismic activity during a period of 8 months. The region is characterized by a relatively low rate of seismicity that is often attributed to the slow (2 cm/yr) subduction of the old, 90 My, Atlantic lithosphere beneath the Caribbean Plate. Based on tomographic inversion of wide-angle seismic data, the forearc can clearly be divided into an inner forearc, characterised by a high vertical velocity gradient in the igneous crust, and an outer forearc with lower crustal velocity gradient. The thick, high velocity, inner forearc is possibly the extension at depth of the Mesozoic Caribbean crust outcropping in La Désirade Island. The outer forearc, up to 70 km wide in the northern part of the study area, is getting narrower to the south and disappears offshore Martinique. Based on its seismic velocity structure with velocities higher than 6 km/s the backstop consists, at least partly, of magmatic rocks. The outer forearc is also highly deformed and faulted within the subducting trend of the Tiburon Ridge. With respect to the inner forearc velocity structure the outer forearc basement could either correspond to an accreted oceanic terrane or made of highly fractured rocks. The inner forearc is a dense, poorly deformable crustal block, tilted southward as a whole. It acts as a rigid buttress increasing the strain within both the overriding and subducting plates. This appears clearly in the current local seismicity affecting the subducting and the overriding plates that is located beneath the inner forearc. We detected earthquakes beneath the Caribbean forearc and in the Atlantic oceanic plate as well. The main seismic activity is concentrated in the lower crust and in the mantle wedge, close to the island arc beneath the inner forearc domain. In comparison, little seismicity is observed beneath the outer forearc domain. We propose that the difference of the seismicity beneath the inner and the outer forearc is related to a difference of crustal structure between the inner forearc interpreted as a dense, thick and rigid crustal block and the lighter and more flexible outer forearc. Seismicity is enhanced beneath the inner forearc because it likely increases the vertical stress applied to the subducting plate. At depth, interplate earthquakes observed between 35 and 45 km depth, deeper than the Moho of the forearc (~30 km), possibly reveal the downdip limit of the seismogenic zone. The Thales Scientific Party is composed of: Bayrakci, G., Bécel, A., Charvis, P., Diaz, J., Evain, M., Flueh, E., Gallart, J., Gailler, A., Galve, A., Hello, Y., Hirn, A., Kopp, H., Krabbenhoeft, A., Laigle, M., Lebrun, J. F., Monfret, T., Papenberg, C., Planert, L., Ruiz, M., Sapin, M., Weinzierl, W.

  20. Magmatism and metamorphism linked to the accretion of continental blocks south of the Hindu Kush, Afghanistan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Faryad, Shah Wali; Collett, Stephen; Petterson, Mike; Sergeev, Sergey A.

    2013-08-01

    Metamorphic basement rocks in the southern part of the Western Hindu Kush at contact with the Kabul and Helmand crustal blocks were investigated to elucidate pressure-temperature variation and relative time relations among different metamorphic rocks. The rocks are represented by Proterozoic amphibolite facies para-/orthogneisses and migmatites with low-grade Paleozoic volcano-sedimentary sequences. Major- and trace-element geochemistry from two orthogneiss bodies and geochronological data, including new SHRIMP analyses on zircon from one of these bodies shows that they are derived from granitic rocks that related to two different magmatic arcs of Triassic and Cretaceous ages. The Triassic granites are common in the Western Hindu Kush where they intrude basement units; the Cretaceous granitic belt crosses the Afghan Central blocks south of the Hindu Kush Mountains. Three different metamorphic events have been distinguished in the southern part of Western Hindu Kush. Based on an unconformity between basement units and Carboniferous cover sequences, the first two amphibolite and greenschist facies metamorphic events are Proterozoic and Pre-Carboniferous in age respectively. The third metamorphism was recognized in Triassic and Cretaceous granitic rocks near to contact with the Kabul Block. It is of Eocene age and reached medium pressure amphibolite facies conditions. This event is genetically linked to the collision of India and Eurasia which produced a series of trans-Afghan Central block magmatic arcs and crustal scale deformation.

  1. Along-strike complex geometry of subduction zones - an experimental approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Midtkandal, I.; Gabrielsen, R. H.; Brun, J.-P.; Huismans, R.

    2012-04-01

    Recent knowledge of the great geometric and dynamic complexity insubduction zones, combined with new capacity for analogue mechanical and numerical modeling has sparked a number of studies on subduction processes. Not unexpectedly, such models reveal a complex relation between physical conditions during subduction initiation, strength profile of the subducting plate, the thermo-dynamic conditions and the subduction zones geometries. One rare geometrical complexity of subduction that remains particularly controversial, is the potential for polarity shift in subduction systems. The present experiments were therefore performed to explore the influence of the architecture, strength and strain velocity on complexities in subduction zones, focusing on along-strike variation of the collision zone. Of particular concern were the consequences for the geometry and kinematics of the transition zones between segments of contrasting subduction direction. Although the model design to some extent was inspired by the configuration along the Iberian - Eurasian suture zone, the results are also of significance for other orogens with complex along-strike geometries. The experiments were set up to explore the initial state of subduction only, and were accordingly terminated before slab subduction occurred. The model wasbuilt from layers of silicone putty and sand, tailored to simulate the assumed lithospheric geometries and strength-viscosity profiles along the plate boundary zone prior to contraction, and comprises two 'continental' plates separated by a thinner 'oceanic' plate that represents the narrow seaway. The experiment floats on a substrate of sodiumpolytungstate, representing mantle. 24 experimental runs were performed, varying the thickness (and thus strength) of the upper mantle lithosphere, as well as the strain rate. Keeping all other parameters identical for each experiment, the models were shortened by a computer-controlled jackscrew while time-lapse images were recorded. After completion, the models were saturated with water and frozen, allowing for sectioning and profile inspection. The experiments were invariably characterized by different along-strike patterns of deformation, so that three distinct structural domains could be distinguished in all cases. Model descriptions are subdivided accordingly, including domain CC, simulating a continent-continent collision, domain OC, characterized by continent-ocean-continent collision and domain T, representing the transition zone between domain CC and domain OC. The latter zone varied in width and complexity depending on the contrast in structural style developed in the two other domains; in cases where domain OC developed very differently from domain CC, the transition zone was generally wider and more complex. A typical experiment displayed the following features and strain history: In domain CC two principal thrust sheets are displayed, which obviously developed in an in-sequence foreland-directed fashion. The lowermost detachment nucleated at the base of the High Strength Lithospheric Mantle analogue, whereas the uppermost thrust was anchored within the "lower crust". The two thrusts operated in concert, the surface trace of the deepest dominating in the west, and the shallowest in the east. The kinematic development of domain CC could be subdivided into four stages, including initiation of a symmetrical anticline with a minute amplitude and situated directly above the velocity discontinuity defined by the plate contact (stage 1), contemporaneous development of the two thrusts (stage 2) and an associated asymmetrical anticline (stage 3) with a central collapse graben in the latest phase (stage 4). It is noted that the segment CC as seen in a clear majority of the experiments followed this pattern of development. In contrast, the configuration of domain OC displayed greater variation, and included north and south-directed subduction, folding, growth of pop-up-structures and triangle zones. In the "ocean crust" domain, stage 1 was characterized by the growt

  2. GEOL 443 SYLLABUS Igneous and Metamorphic Petrology, Spring 2013

    E-print Network

    Zeng, Ning

    and Chapter 1 dynamics of the Earth. Where are igneous rocks generated? Jan 29 Classification and nomenclature 11 March 5 Igneous Rock Associations (subduction zones and granitoids) Chapters 12-18 March 7 Exam 1 Description This course provides an introduction to the petrology of igneous and metamorphic rocks. Topics

  3. Determination of the pore fluid pressure ratio at seismogenic megathrusts in subduction zones: Implications for strength of

    E-print Network

    Seno, Tetsuzo

    Determination of the pore fluid pressure ratio at seismogenic megathrusts in subduction zones) sn, where l is the pore fluid pressure ratio, m is the coefficient of static friction, and sn. (2009), Determination of the pore fluid pressure ratio at seismogenic megathrusts in subduction zones

  4. Imaging of Upwelling Fluids and Partial Melt in the Subduction Zone with 3D Regional Electrical Resistivity Structure by the Network-MT Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hata, M.; Oshiman, N.; Yoshimura, R.; Tanaka, Y.; Uyeshima, M.

    2012-04-01

    Subduction zones are where oceanic plate and seawater (aqueous fluids) return to Earth's mantle and the fluids released into the mantle from the downgoing slab as a consequence of metamorphic reactions [e.g., Tatsumi, 1989]. Such the fluids trigger partial melt of upper mantle and crust. As a result, igneous activity forms volcanoes as typical surface expressions in subduction zones because the partial melt rises owing to its lower density. The island of Kyushu in the Southwestern Japan is a typical high angle subduction zone, at which the hot Shikoku basin (15-27 Ma) and the cold Philippine Sea plate (45-55 Ma) subduct beneath the Eurasian plate. Kyushu can be separated into three parts; northern Kyushu, central Kyushu and southern Kyushu, and there exist many quaternary active volcanoes, as the Aso and Kuju volcanoes in the northern part and Kirishima and Sakurajima volcanoes in the southern part, with defining a volcanic front. Moreover, the central Kyushu is devoid of active volcanoes, where it is considered that the buoyant Kyushu-Palau Ridge subducts. It is important to investigate structure beneath Kyushu for understanding the volcanic formation. In the Kyushu district, the Network-Magnetotelluric (MT) observations were carried out from 1993 to 1998 to cover the whole island of Kyushu. The Network-MT method employs metallic wires in a commercial telephone network to measure the electric potential difference with a dipole length of ten to several tens of kilometers. The Network-MT data provide valuable information on fluid and partial melt (magma) generation because the electromagnetic soundings are highly sensitive to the presence of a few percent of interconnected fluids (aqueous and/or melt). We analyzed the Network-MT data sets, which have geoelectromagnetic information from the crust to upper mantle, in order to determine regional scale electrical resistivity structure. We applied three-dimensional (3D) inversion analyses using the WSINV3DMT inversion code of the version for the Network-MT impedance responses [Uyeshima et al., 2008]. Two remarkable features are found that a conductive block exists beneath the volcano of which the bottom extends to the backarc side and the forearc side including the Philippine Sea plate is resistive. Moreover, the resistive region distributes along the hinge line of the subducting plate as imaged by seismicity. The former conductor is thought to represent fluids released from the slab or partial melt related to the fluid, constituting a magma source for subduction zone volcanoes. In this presentation, we would like to explain details on the 3D resistivity structure related to the subducting Philippine Sea plate and the active volcanoes.

  5. The potential for a great earthquake along the southernmost Ryukyu subduction zone

    E-print Network

    Simons, Mark

    eastern Taiwan and Yonaguni Island (123 E, Figure 1). Along the Ryukyu Trench, the Philippine Sea Plate at the southern Ryukyu Islands ($123.6 E) [Nishimura et al., 2004]. Given the convergence rate of about 80­ 85 mmThe potential for a great earthquake along the southernmost Ryukyu subduction zone Ya-Ju Hsu,1

  6. Mantle convection with strong subduction zones Clinton P. Conrad* and Bradford H. Hager

    E-print Network

    Conrad, Clint

    Mantle convection with strong subduction zones Clinton P. Conrad* and Bradford H. Hager Department-scale con- vection models, so its effect on convection is dif®cult to investigate. We have developed a new for convection, which includes an expression for the energy needed to deform the oceanic lithosphere

  7. Inferred pore pressures at the Costa Rica subduction zone: implications for dewatering processes

    E-print Network

    Fisher, Andrew

    Inferred pore pressures at the Costa Rica subduction zone: implications for dewatering processes a direct measure of the rate and magnitude of sediment dewatering. Laboratory consolidation tests indicate use a simple model of fluid flow to demonstrate that dewatering of the underthrust sediments can occur

  8. A low viscosity wedge in subduction zones Magali I. Billen *, Michael Gurnis

    E-print Network

    Billen, Magali I.

    A low viscosity wedge in subduction zones Magali I. Billen *, Michael Gurnis Seismological mantle wedge), which could decrease the viscosity of the mantle locally by several orders of magnitude. Using numerical models we demonstrate that a low viscosity wedge has a dramatic influence on the force

  9. Plate bending at subduction zones: Consequences for the direction of plate motions

    E-print Network

    between plate bending and various sources of friction at plate boundaries and in the interior toward the trench, especially when the downgoing plate has a distribution of ages [10], and hencePlate bending at subduction zones: Consequences for the direction of plate motions Bruce A. Buffett

  10. Reevaluating carbon fluxes in subduction zones, what goes down, mostly comes up

    E-print Network

    Manning, Craig

    of carbon are stored in the mantle lithosphere and crust. Also, if the subduction zone carbon cycle fraction of the global carbon inventory. carbon cycle | subduction | aqueous geochemistry | metasediment is important but poorly constrained. There have been several recent reviews of the subduction carbon cycle (1

  11. Stress drop as a criterion to differentiate subduction zones where Mw 9 earthquakes can occur

    E-print Network

    Seno, Tetsuzo

    Stress drop as a criterion to differentiate subduction zones where Mw 9 earthquakes can occur Tetsuzo Seno Earthquake Research Institute, University of Tokyo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-0032, Japan a b earthquake Asperity Scaling relation Pore fluid pressure ratio Seismic coupling I propose a hypothesis

  12. GPS constraints on 34 slow slip events within the Cascadia subduction zone, 19972005

    E-print Network

    Miller, M. Meghan

    GPS constraints on 34 slow slip events within the Cascadia subduction zone, 1997­2005 W. Szeliga,1; accepted 27 December 2007; published 8 April 2008. [1] Refinements to GPS analyses in which we factor California an 11-month periodicity continues through 2005. We invert GPS offsets of the 12 best recorded

  13. Guatemala jadeitites and albitites were formed by deuterium-rich serpentinizing fluids deep within a subduction zone

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Johnson, C.A.; Harlow, G.E.

    1999-01-01

    Jadeitites and albitites from the Motagua Valley, Guatemala, are high-pressure-low-temperature metasomatic rocks that occur as tectonic inclusions in serpentinite-matrix melange. Metasomatism was driven by a fluid with a ??18OH2O value of 6???, and a ??DH2O value that is high in comparison with metamorphic fluids at other high-pressure-low-temperature localities of similar grade. We infer that the fluid was originally seawater that was entrained during subduction either as mineral-bound H2O or as free pore waters. The fluid drove serpentinization reactions in ultramafic rocks, possibly leading to deuterium enrichment of H2O, prior to forming the Jadeitites and albitites at a depth of 29 ?? 11 km. There are isotopic and fluid-inclusion similarities to rodingites, which are Ca-rich metasomatites found at other serpentinite localities. Our results suggest that the serpentinization process, whether it occurs within subduction zones or on the flanks of oceanic spreading ridges, may produce residual fluids that are H2O rich, have 1-8 wt% equivalent NaCl, and have high, perhaps sea water-like, ??D values.

  14. Mantle plume-subduction zone interactions over the past 60 Ma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fletcher, Michael; Wyman, Derek A.

    2015-09-01

    A variety of mantle plume types have been proposed and there is a wide range of ways that these plumes might interact with subduction zone arcs. This study looks at the frequency of interaction between previously catalogued plumes and subduction zones while also assessing the potential role of slab windows to either generate false plume signals or contribute to genuine examples of mantle plume-subduction zone interactions. Of the plumes included in several widely cited catalogues, 29% have moved within 1000 km of a subduction zone and 17% have moved within 500 km of a subduction zone over the past 60 Ma, assuming that the plume life span extended over this period. Of the plumes that moved within 1000 km of a subduction zone, 56% are rated as either a deep or mid-mantle plume by an author of at least one of the catalogues. The 44% of interacting plumes that are not rated as mid-mantle or deep by at least one author are the most likely to be related to "top-down" plate tectonic processes. This study shows that they were never coincident with a slab window, although they have often interacted within distances of 1000 km. The manner of interaction between plumes and slab windows depends on the relative positions of the plume, ridge, and slab window. Of the plumes that interact over a 1000 km circular "Zone of Potential Interaction" (ZPI), 28% are no longer interacting today, but have survived that process. While most plumes interact in the form of a ZPI moving over a trench from either behind or in front of the trench, several plumes do cross the trench, demonstrating that plumes can survive even that interaction. Plume-trench interaction occurs in clusters in the northeast and southwest Pacific with limited events in the northwest and southeast Pacific. The presence of clusters in the northeast and southwest Pacific may be caused by the closer proximity of mid-mantle and deep plumes to a subduction zone in these areas. Whereas some deeper plumes may be modified by slab related mantle flow, the coincidence of shallow plumes with changes in plate boundaries suggests an origin related to sites of weakness or extension in the oceanic crust.

  15. Finite element model predictions of static deformation from dislocation sources in a subduction zone: Sensitivities to homogeneous, isotropic, Poisson-solid, and half-space assumptions

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Masterlark, Timothy

    2003-01-01

    Dislocation models can simulate static deformation caused by slip along a fault. These models usually take the form of a dislocation embedded in a homogeneous, isotropic, Poisson-solid half-space (HIPSHS). However, the widely accepted HIPSHS assumptions poorly approximate subduction zone systems of converging oceanic and continental crust. This study uses three-dimensional finite element models (FEMs) that allow for any combination (including none) of the HIPSHS assumptions to compute synthetic Green's functions for displacement. Using the 1995 Mw = 8.0 Jalisco-Colima, Mexico, subduction zone earthquake and associated measurements from a nearby GPS array as an example, FEM-generated synthetic Green's functions are combined with standard linear inverse methods to estimate dislocation distributions along the subduction interface. Loading a forward HIPSHS model with dislocation distributions, estimated from FEMs that sequentially relax the HIPSHS assumptions, yields the sensitivity of predicted displacements to each of the HIPSHS assumptions. For the subduction zone models tested and the specific field situation considered, sensitivities to the individual Poisson-solid, isotropy, and homogeneity assumptions can be substantially greater than GPS. measurement uncertainties. Forward modeling quantifies stress coupling between the Mw = 8.0 earthquake and a nearby Mw = 6.3 earthquake that occurred 63 days later. Coulomb stress changes predicted from static HIPSHS models cannot account for the 63-day lag time between events. Alternatively, an FEM that includes a poroelastic oceanic crust, which allows for postseismic pore fluid pressure recovery, can account for the lag time. The pore fluid pressure recovery rate puts an upper limit of 10-17 m2 on the bulk permeability of the oceanic crust. Copyright 2003 by the American Geophysical Union.

  16. A comparison of seismicity in world's subduction zones: Implication by the difference of b-values

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nishikawa, T.; Ide, S.

    2013-12-01

    Since the pioneering study of Uyeda and Kanamori (1979), it has been thought that world's subduction zones can be classified into two types: Chile and Mariana types. Ruff and Kanamori (1980) suggested that the maximum earthquake size within each subduction zone correlates with convergence rate and age of subducting lithosphere. Subduction zones with younger lithosphere and larger convergence rates are associated with great earthquakes (Chile), while subduction zones with older lithosphere and smaller convergence rates have low seismicity (Mariana). However, these correlations are obscured after the 2004 Sumatra earthquake and the 2009 Tohoku earthquake. Furthermore, McCaffrey (2008) pointed out that the history of observation is much shorter than the recurrence times of very large earthquakes, suggesting a possibility that any subduction zone may produce earthquakes larger than magnitude 9. In the present study, we compare world's subduction zones in terms of b-values in the Gutenberg-Richer relation. We divided world's subduction zones into 146 regions, each of which is bordered by a trench section of about 500 km and extends for 200 km from the trench section in the direction of relative plate motion. In each region, earthquakes equal to or larger than M4.5 occurring during 1988-2009 were extracted from ISC catalog. We find a positive correlation between b-values and ages of subducting lithosphere, which is one of the two important variables discussed in Ruff and Kanamori (1980). Subduction zones with younger lithosphere are associated with high b-values and vice versa, while we cannot find a correlation between b-values and convergence rates. We used the ages determined by Müller et al. (2008) and convergence rate calculated using PB2002 (Bird, 2003) for convergence rate. We also found a negative correlation between b-values and the estimates of seismic coupling, which is defined as the ratio of the observed seismic moment release rate to the rate calculated from plate tectonic velocities (Scholz and Campos, 2012). Lithosphere age also has a weak negative correlation with the degree of seismic coupling. Based on differences in b-values for the types of faulting, Schorlemmer et al. (2005) suggested that b-value depends inversely on differential stress. This idea, taken together with correlations in the present study, suggests a model where the buoyancy of subducting slabs which depends on the lithosphere age determines stress state and the b-value in each sunbduction zone. The stress state also controls the seismic coupling. This model is basically consistent with the idea of Ruff and Kanamori (1980). Subduction zones with younger and lighter lithosphere are in a compressive stress state and associate with high coupling and small b-values (Chile), while those with older and heavier lithosphere are in a tensional stress state and correlate with low coupling and large b-values (Mariana). Subduction zones such as Nicaragua and El Salvador where b-values are much higher than the expectation from the above correlations may be explained by considering the fact that local tectonics affects the seismic coupling (LaFemina et al., 2009; Scholz and Campos, 2012).

  17. Strain partitioning and interplate friction in oblique subduction zones: Constraints provided by experimental modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chemenda, A.; Lallemand, S.; Bokun, A.

    2000-03-01

    Physical modeling of oblique subduction is performed to study the mechanism of strain partitioning. The model is two-layer and includes the elasto-plastic lithosphere (the overriding and subducting plates) and the low-viscosity liquid asthenosphere. The subduction is driven by a push force from a piston and a pull force when the density contrast ?? between the subducting plate and the asthenosphere is positive. We vary both ?? and the interplate friction (frictional stresses). Slip partitioning is obtained only in the models with high interplate friction and only when the overriding plate contains a weak zone. This zone in the models corresponds either to locally thinned lithosphere or to cut (fault). The horizontal, trench-normal component of the interplate friction force |Fph| can be comparable with the absolute value of the horizontal component of the nonhydrostatic interplate pressure force |Fph | in the subduction zone. Ffh is always negative (compression), while Fph can be either negative (compressional subduction regime) or positive (extensional regime). High friction, which promotes partitioning, can completely cancel the extensional (suction) force Fph. Back arc tension and strike-slip faulting appear thus as conflicting processes, although they can coexist in the same subduction zone, depending on the relative values of relevant forces. It appears that high friction can exist only in compressional subduction zones where partitioning should develop more easily. This conclusion is supported by the comparison of two oblique subduction zones, having similar geometry: the compressional southern Kurile zone (strong partitioning) and extensional southern Ryukyu zone (no lithospheric-scale partitioning). Other factors controlling the strain partitioning are the length of the oblique subduction zone, the boundary conditions at the transverse limits of the forearc sliver, and of course, the obliquity of subduction.

  18. Measuring surface deformation in subduction zones with InSAR: Examples from South America and Cascadia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pritchard, M. E.; Lohman, R. B.; Fournier, T. J.; Holtkamp, S. G.

    2009-05-01

    Ground displacements in subduction zones provide several important constraints: the location and magnitude of fault slip on the megathrust during large earthquakes and slow slip events, as well as the nature and extent of inter-seismic, post-seismic, and even pre-seismic surface deformation. The development of satellite Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) has allowed such ground displacements to be measured in many areas without dense arrays of continuously recording instruments on the ground, such as South America and Indonesia. Even where such arrays exist (like in Cascadia), InSAR observations can complement ground observations with increased spatial coverage or by helping to reconstruct the full three-dimensional deformation field. We will demonstrate the capabilities of InSAR in subduction zones with examples of co- seismic, post-seismic, and inter-seismic ground displacement in the Peru-Chile subduction zone including nine subduction zone earthquakes (6.7 < Mw < 8.5). Because of the arid climate in southern Peru and northern Chile, conventional C-band (5.6 cm radar wavelength) InSAR is successful, although like all geodetic methods, InSAR can be effected by changes in the refractive properties of the troposphere and ionosphere. We demonstrate that these atmospheric effects and orbital errors must be removed or accounted for when measuring small amplitude deformation over large spatial scales. In other subduction zones with more vegetation ground cover, L-band (23 cm wavelength) InSAR is successful, but observations are infrequent and the available data starts in 2006. To develop a longer time series (starting in 1992), we will demonstrate the potential of persistent scatterer C-band InSAR to reveal surface deformation in vegetated areas like Cascadia.

  19. Unrevealing the History of Earthquakes and Tsunamis of the Mexican Subduction Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ramirez-Herrera, M. T.; Castillo-Aja, M. D. R.; Cruz, S.; Corona, N.; Rangel Velarde, V.; Lagos, M.

    2014-12-01

    The great earthquakes and tsunamis of the last decades in Sumatra, Chile, and Japan remind us of the need for expanding the record of history of such catastrophic events. It can't be argued that even countries with extensive historical documents and tsunami sand deposits still have unsolved questions on the frequency of them, and the variables that control them along subduction zones. We present here preliminary results of a combined approach using historical archives and multiple proxies of the sedimentary record to unrevealing the history of possible great earthquakes and their tsunamis on the Mexican Subduction zone. The Mexican subduction zone extends over 1000 km long and little is known if the entire subduction zone along the Middle American Trench behaves as one enormous unit rather than in segments that rupture at different frequencies and with different strengths (as the short instrumental record shows). We searched on historical archives and earthquake databases to distinguish tsunamigenic events registered from the 16th century to now along the Jalisco-Colima and Guerrero-Oaxaca coastal stretches. The historical data referred are mostly from the 19th century on since the population on the coast was scarce before. We found 21 earthquakes with tsunamigenic potential, and of those 16 with doubtful to definitive accompanying tsunami on the Jalisco-Colima coast, and 31 tsunamigenic earthquakes on the Oaxaca-Guerrero coast. Evidence of great earthquakes and their tsunamis from the sedimentary record are scarce, perhaps due poor preservation of tsunami deposits in this tropical environment. Nevertheless, we have found evidence for a number of tsunamigenic events, both historical and prehistorical, 1932 and 1400 AD on Jalisco, and 3400 BP, 1789 AD, 1979 ad, and 1985 AD on Guerrero-Oaxaca. We continue working and a number of events are still to be dated. This work would aid in elucidating the history of earthquakes and tsunamis on the Mexican subduction zone.

  20. Anatexis and metamorphism in tectonically thickened continental crust exemplified by the Sevier hinterland, western North America

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Patino Douce, Alberto E.; Humphreys, Eugene D.; Johnston, A. Dana

    1990-01-01

    This paper presents a thermal and petrologic model of anatexis and metamorphism in regions of crustal thickening exemplified by the Sevier hinterland in western North America, and uses the model to examine the geological and physical processes leading to crustally derived magmatism. The results of numerical experiments show that anatexis was an inevitable end-product of Barrovian metamorphism in the thickened crust of the late Mesozoic Sevier orogenic belt and that the advection of heat across the lithosphere, in the form of mantle-derived mafic magmas, was not required for melting of metasedimentary rocks. It is suggested that, in the Sevier belt, as in other intracontinental orogenic belts, anatexis occurred in the midcrust and not at the base of the crust.

  1. Deformation of Lawsonite at High Pressure and High Temperature - Implications for Low Velocity Layers in Subduction Zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Amiguet, E.; Hilairet, N.; Wang, Y.; Gillet, P.

    2014-12-01

    During subduction, the hydrated oceanic crust undergoes a series of metamorphic reactions and transform gradually to blueschists and eclogite at depths of 20-50 km. Detailed seismic observations of subduction zones suggest a complex layered structure with the presence of a Low Velocity Layer (LVL) related to the oceanic crust [1] persisting to considerable depths (100- 250 km).While the transformation from blueschist to eclogite [2] and the presence of glaucophane up to 90-100 km [3] could explain some of these observations, the presence of LVL at greater depths could be related to the presence of the hydrous mineral lawsonite (CaAl2(Si2O7)(OH)2 H2O). Its stability field extends to 8.5 GPa and 1100K corresponding to depths up to 250 km in cold hydrous part of subducting slabs [4]. Because these regions undergo large and heterogeneous deformation, lawsonite plasticity and crystal preferred orientation (CPOs) may strongly influence the dynamic of subduction zones and the seismic properties. We present a deformation study at high presssure and high temperature on lawsonite. Six samples were deformed at 4-10 GPa and 600K to 1000K using a D-DIA apparatus [5] at 13-BMD at GSECARS beamline, APS, in axial compression up to 30% deformation with strain rates of 3.10-4s-1 to 6.10-6s-1. We measured in-situ lattice strains (a proxy for macroscopic stress), texture and strain using synchrotron radiations and calculated the macroscopic stress using lawsonite elastic properties [6]. Results from lattice strain analysis show a dependence of flow stress with temperature and strain rate. Texture analysis coupled with transmission electron microscopy showed that dislocation creep is the dominant deformation mechanism under our deformation conditions. [1] Abers, Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 176, 323-330, 2000 [2] Helffrich et al., Journal of Geophysical Research, 94, 753-763, 1989 [3] Bezacier et al., Tectonophysics, 494, 201-210, 2010 [4] Schmidt & Poli, Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 163, 361-379,1998 [5] Wang et al, Review for Scientific Instruments, 74(6), 3002-3011, 2003 [6] Chantel et al., Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 349-350, 116-125, 2012

  2. Subduction Zone Concepts and the 2010 Chile Earthqake (Arthur Holmes Medal Lecture)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    von Huene, Roland

    2010-05-01

    Knowledge of convergent margin systems evolved from hypothesis testing with marine geophysical technology that improved over decades. Wegener's drift hypothesis, Holmes mantle convection, and marine magnetic anomaly patterns were integrated into an ocean spreading concept that won wide acceptance after ocean drilling confirmed the crustal younging trend toward the Mid-Atlantic ridge. In contrast, the necessary disposal of oceanic and trench sediment at convergent margins remained largely hypothetical. Fresh interpretations of some coastal mountains as exposing ancient convergent margin rock assemblages and the seismologist's "Wadati-Benioff" zone were combined into a widely-accepted hypothesis. A convergent margin upper plate was pictured as an imbricate fan of ocean sediment thrust slices detached from the lower plate. During the 1980s ocean drilling to test the hypothesis revealed what then were counter-intuitive processes of sediment subduction and subduction erosion. Rather than the proposed seaward growth by accretion, many margins had lost material from erosion. In current concepts, individual margins are shaped by the net consequences of subduction accretion, sediment subduction, and subduction erosion. Similarly, recently acquired age data from ancient subduction complexes reveal periods dominated by accretion separated by periods dominated by tectonic erosion. Globally, the recycling of continental crustal material at subduction zones appears largely balanced by magmatic addition at volcanic arcs. The longevity of the original imbricate fan model in text books confirms its pictorial simplicity, because geophysical images and drill core evidence show that it commonly applies to only a relatively small frontal prism. A better understanding of convergent margin dynamics is of urgent societal importance as coastal populations increase rapidly and as recent disastrous earthquakes and tsunamis verify. The shift in convergent margin concepts has developed through 50 years of improved acquisition techniques, analysis capabilities, and imaging that greatly improves resolution in observational data. The first observatories in boreholes that place instruments closer to earthquake rupture zones have been deployed. Technological improvement should be strongly pursued to meet future challenges. Advanced seismic imaging and the new riser drilling vessel Chikyu are tools to significantly advance understanding of earthquake mechanics but availability is restricted by current global science budgets. The present scientific knowledge leaves great earthquakes and tsunamis an unpredictable "stealth" natural hazard of great proportions.

  3. Imaging the Locked Zone of the Cascadia Subduction Zone Using Receiver Functions from the Cascadia Initiative

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Janiszewski, H. A.; Abers, G. A.; Gaherty, J. B.; Carton, H. D.

    2014-12-01

    The Cascadia subduction zone is a hot end-member system that is characterized by the subduction of young, thickly sedimented lithosphere. Previous receiver function studies have observed a low velocity zone (LVZ) with strong contrasts along the thrust up to 40 km depth. It is hypothesized that this may be created by a channel of either near-lithostatic pressure fluids or stronger metasediments, implying a weak thrust zone. These studies have been limited to data from onshore stations, and thus have not imaged the shallower, geodetically locked portion of the thrust zone, which is located offshore. The ocean bottom seismometers (OBS) from the Cascadia Initiative (CI), which are among the first broadband instruments successfully deployed in shallow water using low-profile Trawl-Resistant-Mounts (TRM), offer the opportunity to extend receiver function studies of the LVZ offshore. Calculation of receiver functions from OBS data is difficult due to water column noise. Fortunately, the TRM housing yields quieter horizontal-component signals, and with proper application of tilt and compliance corrections receiver functions are calculated at all of the successfully deployed TRM OBS from CI Year 1, as well as at some deep water stations. We use velocity models from the previous onshore receiver function studies to generate synthetic receiver functions to compare with our data. Several of the stations on the continental margin have consistent arrivals at 3-4 s lag that match predicted depths for the subduction interface. The shallow-water stations deployed off the coast of Grays Harbor, Washington record a high-amplitude asymmetric arrival consistent with reverberations off the top and bottom of the LVZ. This high-amplitude arrival is not as evident at other stations along the margin region. This along strike variation may be evidence for segmentation along the thrust zone; however, a careful analysis of these complex signals will be needed to determine the extent of the LVZ offshore. The evolution of this LVZ from the up-dip locked region through the transition zone to the down-dip freely slipping region will aid in our understanding of the hydration state of the Cascadia thrust.

  4. Transition from dehydration to hydration during exhumation of the Sanbagawa metamorphic belt, Japan, revealed by the continuous P- T path recorded in garnet and amphibole zoning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Uno, Masaoki; Iwamori, Hikaru; Toriumi, Mitsuhiro

    2015-09-01

    To investigate the water budget in deep accretionary prisms, we undertook a detailed petrologic analysis of garnet-bearing amphibolites in the subduction-origin high-pressure Sanbagawa metamorphic belt, Japan. We obtained a continuous P- T path of exhumation by the application of differential thermodynamics to compositional zoning in both garnet and amphibole. The P- T path is characterized by three stages of decompression: (1) heating decompression from 1.5 GPa and 550 °C to 1.1 GPa and 600 °C; (2) isothermal decompression toward 0.8 GPa and 580 °C; and (3) cooling decompression to 0.3 GPa and 400 °C. Comparison with the results of numerical modeling of the thermal structures of subduction zones suggests that the peak-pressure condition is warmer than the slab surface temperature in a typical subduction zone, but is consistent with subduction of a young slab during the Sanbagawa metamorphism. The heating decompression just after the peak-pressure condition is explained by heating from the mantle wedge during ascent of the metamorphic body in the accretionary prism; heating stops when the metamorphic body reaches crustal depths. Mass balance calculations for the mineral reactions in an amphibolite reveal that the dehydration associated with the growth of Ca-poor garnet takes place during heating decompression, whereas hydration takes place during cooling decompression by the breakdown of garnet and pargasite to form chlorite and actinolite. Such a transition from dehydration to hydration in the exhuming metabasite body in an accretionary prism generates fluids between the continental Moho and the slab surface and may explain the seismic activity above the subduction plate boundary, such as supra-slab earthquakes.

  5. Evaluating the Extent of C Cycling Through a Cold Subduction Zone: New Clues from Izu- Bonin Melt Inclusions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shaw, A. M.; Hauri, E. H.; Fischer, T. P.; Hilton, D. R.

    2006-05-01

    Subduction zones provide our best window into C cycling processes between Earth's surface reservoirs and the mantle. The efficiency of this process can be constrained through volatile studies of melt inclusions, where measured pre-eruptive CO2 contents are combined with magma production rates to obtain an output CO2 flux. These outputs can then be compared to C inputs from the subducting slab (sedimentary, organic and altered oceanic crust) to evaluate budgets through a given arc system. Decarbonation of the various C components within a slab are strongly controlled by temperature, pressure and fluid availability. The Izu-Bonin subduction zone system is a cold subduction zone and modeled CO2 behaviour for low temperature geotherms suggest that little decarbonation would occur at subarc depths 1. However, fluids can effectively promote decarbonation. Trace element ratios of Izu arc rocks 2 predict that a significant amount of fluid is fluxed through the Izu-Bonin arc system. This study aims to evaluate the extent of C recycling through a cold, yet fluid-rich arc system. Here we report new CO2 melt inclusions abundance data from 4 volcanoes in the Izu-Bonin arc: Nijima, Oshima, Hachijojima and Aogashima. Concentrations of CO2, along with other volatiles (H2O, F, SO2, Cl), were determined using SIMS techniques at the Carnegie Institution of Washington. Various processes can modify intrinsic volatile contents such as degassing, fractional crystallization, crustal contamination and extent of melting, thereby masking true source values. CO2 contents of Izu-Bonin melt inclusions show positive trends with other volatiles (H2O and SO2) and with MgO contents (with the exception of Nijima). This indicates that differentiation and degassing have occurred simultaneously. In this case, we assume that the highest CO2 concentration samples (up to 1200 ppm CO2 from Nijima volcano) best represent pre-eruptive magma compositions. Comparing a total CO2 input of 10.35 Mmol/yr3 to our calculated output of 17.6 Mmol/yr (assuming a magma production rate of 60 km3/km/Myr1) we estimate that approximately 17% of C subducted at the trench is recycled at the arc front. This value is remarkably similar to the C recycling efficiency found at the Central American arc (14-18%)5, where thermal conditions are significantly warmer. 1Kerrick, D.M. and Connolly, J.A.D. Metamorphic devolatization of subducted marine sediments and the transport of volatiles into the Earth's mantle, Nature v. 411, 293-296 (2001). 2Stern, R. J., Fouch, M. J. & Klemperer, S. in Inside the Subduction Factory 175-222 (2003). 3Hilton, D. R., Fischer, T. P. & Marty, B. Rev. in Mineral v. 47 319-370. 4Dimalanta, C., Taira, A., Yumul, G. P., Jr., Tokuyama, H. & Mochizuki, K. EPSL, v. 202, 105-115 (2002). 5Shaw, A. M., Hilton, D. R., Fischer, T. P., Walker, J. A. & Alvarado, G. EPSL v. 214, 499-513 (2003).

  6. Elevation of volcanoes and their edifice heights at subduction zones

    SciTech Connect

    Ben-Avraham, Z.; Nur, A.

    1980-08-10

    The elevation above sea level of circum-Pacific volcanoes situated on continental crust varies greatly, not only between various chains but also within chains. Their edifice heights, however, are essentially constant with each chain. This pattern is reversed for oceanic volcanoes: The elevation circum-Pacific volcanoes situated on oceanic curst is constant within arcs, while edifice heights are greatly variable. In continents the depth to the root zones of volcanoes may be within the elastic part of the lithosphere, whereas in the oceans it may be well below the elastic part of the lithosphere. We suggest that melting, or the onset of the volcanic uprising, may be controlled in both cases primarily by pressure: in the continental lithosphere by the overburden pressure determined by depth below the local surface and in the oceanic lithosphere by the isostatically compensated pressure zone controlled by depth below sea level. The pattern seems to hold even in complex geological regions and may be used to identify the nature of the crust in such regions.

  7. Middle Cambrian to Late Ordovician evolution of the Appalachian margin: Foundering of a passive margin to form a subduction zone and volcanic arc

    SciTech Connect

    Washington, P.A. , Southern Pines, NC )

    1994-03-01

    From late Middle Cambrian to early Late Ordovician time, the Appalachian passive margin experienced a series of orogenic events culminating in the Taconic orogeny. Most of these events are generally viewed as enigmatic and isolated, but they can be viewed as a coherent tectonic sequence of events. The early stages involved broad uplifts and localized extension, especially of internal shelf and adjacent continental interiors. Later stages involved increased subsidence rates of the outer shelf, resulting in retreat of the outer margin of the carbonate platform.The beginning of volcanic activity coincides with, or immediately follows, the rapid subsidence. Onset of compressional orogenesis is often temporally separated from the initial rapid subsidence. These events can be integrated into a tectonic model in which the passive margin is converted into an active Andean margin. Early uplift and extension events represented the surface expression of the beginning of deep-seated downward mantle convection. Subsequent rapid subsidence events represented the mechanical failure of the lithosphere as the convection reaches maturity. Failure of the lithosphere resulted in a subduction zone that quickly created arc volcanism. The compressive Taconic orogenesis occurred when the arc was thrust back onto the shelf margin as the subduction zone migrated continentward in response to progressively channeled convective flow.

  8. Probing the Detailed Seismic Velocity Structure of Subduction Zones Using Advanced Seismic Tomography Methods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, H.; Thurber, C. H.

    2005-12-01

    Subduction zones are one of the most important components of the Earth's plate tectonic system. Knowing the detailed seismic velocity structure within and around subducting slabs is vital to understand the constitution of the slab, the cause of intermediate depth earthquakes inside the slab, the fluid distribution and recycling, and tremor occurrence [Hacker et al., 2001; Obara, 2002].Thanks to the ability of double-difference tomography [Zhang and Thurber, 2003] to resolve the fine-scale structure near the source region and the favorable seismicity distribution inside many subducting slabs, it is now possible to characterize the fine details of the velocity structure and earthquake locations inside the slab, as shown in the study of the Japan subduction zone [Zhang et al., 2004]. We further develop the double-difference tomography method in two aspects: the first improvement is to use an adaptive inversion mesh rather than a regular inversion grid and the second improvement is to determine a reliable Vp/Vs structure using various strategies rather than directly from Vp and Vs [see our abstract ``Strategies to solve for a better Vp/Vs model using P and S arrival time'' at Session T29]. The adaptive mesh seismic tomography method is based on tetrahedral diagrams and can automatically adjust the inversion mesh according to the ray distribution so that the inversion mesh nodes are denser where there are more rays and vice versa [Zhang and Thurber, 2005]. As a result, the number of inversion mesh nodes is greatly reduced compared to a regular inversion grid with comparable spatial resolution, and the tomographic system is more stable and better conditioned. This improvement is quite valuable for characterizing the fine structure of the subduction zone considering the highly uneven distribution of earthquakes within and around the subducting slab. The second improvement, to determine a reliable Vp/Vs model, lies in jointly inverting Vp, Vs, and Vp/Vs using P, S, and S-P times in a manner similar to double-difference tomography. Obtaining a reliable Vp/Vs model of the subduction zone is more helpful for understanding its mechanical and petrologic properties. Our applications of the original version of double-difference tomography to several subduction zones beneath northern Honshu, Japan, the Wellington region, New Zealand, and Alaska, United States, have shown evident velocity variations within and around the subducting slab, which likely is evidence of dehydration reactions of various hydrous minerals that are hypothesized to be responsible for intermediate depth earthquakes. We will show the new velocity models for these subduction zones by applying our advanced tomographic methods.

  9. Experimental Study on Fluid Distribution at Ultra-High Metamorphic Conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mönicke, K.; Burchard, M.; Duyster, J.; Maresch, W. V.; Röller, K.; Stöckhert, B.

    2001-12-01

    Ultra-high pressure (UHP) metamorphic rocks record deep subduction of continental crust. Insight into their rheological behavior at UHP metamorphic conditions is important for the understanding of the mechanical state and the kinematics within subduction zones. Amazingly, many exhumed UHP metamorphic rocks do not show evidence of significant deformation. Thus, it has been proposed that deformation is localized in low-strength zones controlled by partially wetting interstitial fluids [1]. Experimental results [2] show that at UHP metamorphic conditions only one homogenous fluid phase with variable composition exists, whose density and viscosity should be intermediate between those of conventional aqueous solutions and hydrous melts. Inclusions of such supercritical fluid have been recently described from a natural UHP metamorphic rock [3]. Motivated by these findings, experiments using a piston-cylinder apparatus were performed to study the fluid distribution in various rock types at pressures of 3.5 GPa and temperatures between 900 ° C and 600 ° C. Starting materials were natural UHP metamorphic specimens of (1) S-type granitic biotite-phengite-gneiss and (2) pyrope-quartzite, both from the Dora Maira Massif (Western Alps, Italy) and (3) a diamond-bearing garnet-mica-gneiss with granodioritic bulk composition from the Saxonian Erzgebirge (Germany), all with 2 wt.% water added. The supercritical fluids formed in these experiments can be quenched to form a silicic glass with demixing of an aqueous solution without changing the UHP fluid topology significantly. The shape of the fluid-filled interstices is irregular and complex, resulting in a low volume/interface area ratio and a potential of high stress concentration at the edges of wedge-shaped offshoots. We propose that the distribution of supercritical fluids has a pronounced effect on the strength of cool subducted crust, allowing deformation by grain boundary sliding and dissolution precipitation creep, or granular flow with grain shape accommodation by material transfer via an intergranular fluid [4], possibly localized in specific rock types. References: \

  10. Paleoseismic Investigations of Subduction Zone Earthquakes on the Southeastern Coast of the Kenai Peninsula, Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kelsey, H. M.; Witter, R. C.; Briggs, R. W.; Engelhart, S. E.; Nelson, A. R.; Haeussler, P. J.

    2013-12-01

    Rupture extents for prehistoric subduction zone earthquakes on the Alaska margin are poorly documented. For example, the 1964 great Alaska earthquake ruptured the subduction zone from Prince William Sound westward to the southwest end of Kodiak Island, but an outstanding question is whether or not earlier subduction earthquakes ruptured a shorter segment in the Kodiak region with the eastern margin located in the Kenai Peninsula. To address the question, we investigated several embayments on the Pacific (southeastern) coast of the Kenai Peninsula to reconstruct the late Holocene paleoseismic history. Constraints to constructing a paleoseismic history on the outer Kenai coast include recent deglaciation of embayments that limits a stratigraphic record to approximately the last 1 to 3 thousand years and the high wave-energy environment that results in frequent closure of embayments by barrier bars. Recognizing these constraints, two approaches have proved productive in investigating paleoseismic history on the outer Kenai coast. One involves understanding how beach ridges can be formed and modified by coseismic subsidence and documenting timing and number of late Holocene prehistoric earthquakes based on beach ridge genesis and evolution. The other approach, which is the more conventional paleoseismic approach for subduction zones, is investigating stratigraphic evidence for coseismic subsidence in peaty and muddy sediment within embayments. We illustrate these two approaches using two coastal sites in Aialik Bay within Kenai Fjords National Park, a strandplain complex at Verdant Cove and a drowned embayment at Quicksand Cove, respectively. Both sites record two prehistoric subduction zone earthquakes prior to the historically known 1964 great Alaska earthquake.

  11. Carbon mobilized at shallow depths in subduction zones by carbonatitic liquids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poli, Stefano

    2015-08-01

    More than half a gigaton of CO2 is subducted into Earth’s interior each year. At least 40% of this CO2 is returned to the atmosphere by arc volcanism. Processes that are known to release carbon from subducting slabs--decarbonation or carbonate dissolution in fluids--can account for only a portion of the CO2 released at arc volcanoes. Carbonatitic liquids may form from the subducting crust, but are thought to form only at very high temperatures. Melting of carbonated rocks could restrict the subduction of carbon into the deeper Earth. However, the behaviour of such rock types in subduction zones is unclear. Here I use laboratory experiments to show that calcium-rich hydrous carbonatitic liquids can form at temperatures as low as 870 to 900 °C, which corresponds to shallow depths of just 120 km beneath subduction zone arcs, in warm thermal regimes. I find that water strongly depresses the solidus for hydrous carbonate gabbro and limestone rocks, creating carbonatitic liquids that efficiently scavenge volatile elements, calcium and silicon, from the slab. These extremely mobile and reactive liquids are expected to percolate into the mantle wedge, and create a CO2 source for subduction zone magmatism. Carbonatitic liquids thus provide a potentially significant pathway for carbon recycling at shallow depths beneath arcs.

  12. Constraints from fluid inclusions in mantle minerals on the composition of subduction-zone fluids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schiano, P.; Provost, A.; Cluzel, N.

    2013-12-01

    Slab-derived fluids are thought to enrich the mantle wedge in water and trace elements, and this metasomatized mantle region becomes the source of island arc basalts. Much of the evidence for this model has been derived indirectly through the study of the composition of the end-products, the lavas, and there have only been a few direct studies of the metasomatism of the mantle rocks from these regions. Therefore important aspects of the model have remained somewhat hypothetical. In particular, there are different viewpoints on the nature of subduction fluids, their trace element compositions and their pathways in the slab and overlying mantle. The whole debate is also hampered by the limited memory that high-pressure metamorphic rocks preserve of their subduction history, due to retrograde overprinting during exhumation, and by uncertainties in reproducing the conditions of subduction during experiments. Here we identify trapped pristine samples of the fluid phase percolating through the mantle wedge beneath island arcs, by examining fluid inclusions trapped within spinel-harzburgite xenoliths in an arc-front volcano (Batan island, Luzon arc). The xenoliths correspond to previously metasomatized mantle fragments incorporated in the lavas during ascent. Cl-bearing H2O-rich fluid inclusions occur within both primary (ol, opx) and late metasomatic minerals (e.g., cpx, phlogopite, amphibole). They were formed by the addition of aqueous fluids or by separation of aqueous fluids from H2O-saturated melt inclusions, as suggested by the occurrence of composite inclusions consisting of silicate glass and H2O (liq+vap). The associated silicate melt inclusions were previously shown to display silica-rich compositions that are consistent with slab-derived melts [1] or melts of metasomatized mantle peridotites [2]. In situ Raman spectroscopy reveals that at room temperature, the fluid inclusions are composed mainly of H2O, H2S and HS- and contain also sulphur (S6) and Mg-carbonates. Step-heating experiments were performed using a heating stage placed under the Raman microscope to estimate the initial composition of the trapped fluid. At 930°C, the final homogenization temperature of the associated melt inclusions, the fluid inclusions are homogeneous and composed of H2O, H2S and CO2. Salinities in the H2O-NaCl system calculated using freezing point depression relationship indicate that total salt of less than 10 wt% NaCl-equivalent is dissolved in the aqueous fluids. Trace-element data for Cl-bearing H2O-rich fluid inclusions are obtained using LA-ICPMS at Clermont-Ferrand. Comparison with compositions of the associated silicate melt inclusions allows determination of fluid/melt partition coefficients Dfluid/melt for the slab-released phases. The resultant coefficients are compared with experimentally determined Dfluid/melt, discussed in terms of recycling rates of key elements in subduction zones, and considered for the generation of trace element patterns typical for calc-alkaline magmas. [1] Schiano et al. (1995) Nature 377, 595-600 ; [2] Eiler et al. (2007) G3 8(9) doi :10.1029/2006GC001503

  13. A Crustal Structure Study of the Southern Ryukyu Subduction Zone by Using the Aftershock Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cho, Y.; Lin, J.; Lee, C.

    2011-12-01

    The region along the Ryukyu subduction zone is known as a tsunami disaster zone. The biggest tsunami (85 m) of Japan history was recorded in the Ishigaki Island, Ryukyu, in 1771. The paleo-tsunami events show that it has a frequency of about 150 years. This thread makes the Ryukyu subduction zone as a concerned field for the earthquake studies. However, due to the long distance from the east coast of Taiwan, this is an area out of the effective earthquake detection zone from the Central Weather Bureau network. A main shock of M = 6.9 occurred near the Ishigaki Island in 2009 August 17. After this event, we quickly deployed the OBS and found many aftershocks with the magnitude greater than 5.0. The main shock was 240 km, NE direction from the Hualien city, Taiwan. If a tsunami occurred, it took only less than 15 minutes to arrive the coast. From the recorded data, we picked the P- and S-wave using the 1-D module (iasp91). There were 1500 recorded events during those time range, and most of the earthquakes were located around the Nanao Basin. Based on this, we study the southern Ryukyu subduction zone structure by using the results from focal mechanism solution. From the earthquake relocation it shows that two main groups of aftershocks. They tend in northwest - southeast with a left-lateral strike-slip fault. The left-lateral strike-slip fault is the main structures that link with the splay faults at the southern Ryukyu Trench. The stability and extension of the splay faults are one of the major concerns for the occurrence of mega earthquake. More than 500-km long of the splay fault, such as that in the Indonesia, Chile and Japan subduction zones, has attacked by mega earthquakes in the recent years. The second group of those aftershocks was located in the Gagua Ridge near the Ryukyu Trench. This group may represent the ridge structure relate to the Taitung canyon fault. The front of Ryukyu Trench was being as a locked subduction zone where it is easily to accumulate the earthquake stress. Because of these two earthquake groups are out of range of Taiwan Central Weather Bureau network and lack of information, it is worthwhile to focus our attentions on it.

  14. Earthquake supercycle in subduction zones controlled by the downdip width of the seismogenic zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Herrendörfer, Robert; van Dinther, Ylona; Gerya, Taras; Dalguer, Luis Angel

    2015-04-01

    Supercycles describe a long-term cluster of megathrust earthquakes that consist of partial ruptures before a complete failure of a subduction zone segment (Sieh et al. 2008, Goldfinger et al. 2013). The controls on supercycles remain unclear, although structural or fault frictional heterogeneities were proposed (Sieh et al. 2008). We recognize that supercycles have been suggested in those subduction zones (Sieh et al. 2008, Goldfinger et al. 2013, Metois et al. 2014, Chlieh et al. 2014) for which the seismogenic zone downdip width is estimated (Heuret et al. 2011, Hayes et al. 2012, Hayes et al. 2013) to be larger than average. Here we assess this potential link between the seismogenic zone downdip width and supercycles. For this purpose we use the continuum-based seismo-mechanical model of megathrust earthquake cycles in subduction zones (Van Dinther et al. 2013), which was validated through a comparison against scaled analogue subduction experiments (Corbi et al. 2013). The two-dimensional numerical model setup consists of a visco-elastic wedge underthrusted by a rigid plate and a frictional boundary layer simulating the megathrust. In this boundary layer, we evaluate a non-associative Drucker-Prager plasticity with pressure dependent yield strength and a strongly rate-dependent friction formulation. The velocity-weakening seismogenic zone with a downdip width W is limited up-and downdip by velocity-strengthening regions. In our numerical models, an increasing seismogenic zone downdip width leads to a transition from ordinary cycles of similar sized complete ruptures to supercycles. For supercycles in wide seismogenic zones, we demonstrate how interseismic deformation accompanied by partial ruptures effectively increases the stress throughout the seismogenic zone until a crack-like superevent releases most of the accumulated stresses. Our findings suggest that supercycles are more likely to occur in subduction zones with a large seismogenic downdip width due to a larger potential strength excess. It takes longer and more events to reach a critical stress state in the center of wider seismogenic zones. We conclude that such stress evolution along the dip of a wide seismogenic zone is the simplest mechanism governing supercycles. Our results show that earthquake size variability during a supercycle can be purely explained by the along-dip evolution of stress heterogeneities within an up- and downdip bounded homogeneous seismogenic zone. Additional a priori complexities, like previously suggested structural or frictional heterogeneities (Sieh et al. 2008) are not required to generate supercycles, although they are expected to complicate our simplest explanation of supercycles. We suggest that larger than thus far observed earthquakes could occur as part of a supercycle in subduction zones with a large seismogenic zone downdip width.

  15. Imaging the Western Pacific Subduction Zones Using High-resolution Radon Transforms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gu, Y. J.; Schultz, R.; An, Y.

    2007-12-01

    Underside reflections (SS, PP precursors) have been widely used in imaging seismic discontinuity structures since the early 1990s. While these waves provide a outstanding global coverage, some regions remain under- sampled, for example, much of the Western Pacific subduction zones and South America. Furthermore, the so called "cap centers" of common signal enhancement schemes do not always reflect the true centers of data, nor do they aim to reduce the effect of uneven coverage. We present results from analyzing the largest SS precursor dataset to date (from 1981-2007) along the Western Pacific subduction zones. This data set more than doubles the data used in the global study of Gu et al. (2003) in the same regions. We adopt variable cap sizes (hence variable resolutions) to equalize the data count, and apply a high-resolution Radon Transform method to simultaneously constrain the ray angle and timing of SS precursors. Our study shows strong depressions of the 660-km discontinuity along the subduction zones, and the lateral variations strongly correlate with regional seismic velocities. The lateral extent of the depressions is smaller than previously found, which we attribute to the high resolution of our new approach. The 410-km discontinuity is elevated beneath the northwestern Pacific, and the anti-correlation with the topography of the 660- km discontinuity reflect significant thermal variations. Overall, however, the correlation between the two transition zone discontinuities is poor in along the Western Pacific subduction zones. The presence of water, garnet phase transformation and the limited lateral dimension of subducted slabs could all affect the topography of these discontinuities, particularly the 410 km discontinuity. The thickness of the transition zone, however, appear to be a more robust measure of temperature: it is consistently narrower than the global average across these subduction zones, as would be expected from the olivine phase transitions. In addition to the transition zone discontinuities, our high-resolution Radon images also present clear evidence of mantle reflectors near 250 km and 850-950 km. The occurrence of the latter reflector is more common than previously proposed and could represent a potential global discontinuity. Phase transformation or chemical differentiation could contribute to this well-resolved interface.

  16. Scattering beneath Western Pacific subduction zones: evidence for oceanic crust in the mid-mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bentham, H. L. M.; Rost, S.

    2014-06-01

    Small-scale heterogeneities in the mantle can give important insight into the dynamics and composition of the Earth's interior. Here, we analyse seismic energy found as precursors to PP, which is scattered off small-scale heterogeneities related to subduction zones in the upper and mid-mantle. We use data from shallow earthquakes (less than 100 km depth) in the epicentral distance range of 90°-110° and use array methods to study a 100 s window prior to the PP arrival. Our analysis focuses on energy arriving off the great circle path between source and receiver. We select coherent arrivals automatically, based on a semblance weighted beampower spectrum, maximizing the selection of weak amplitude arrivals. Assuming single P-to-P scattering and using the directivity information from array processing, we locate the scattering origin by ray tracing through a 1-D velocity model. Using data from the small-aperture Eielson Array (ILAR) in Alaska, we are able to image structure related to heterogeneities in western Pacific subduction zones. We find evidence for ˜300 small-scale heterogeneities in the region around the present-day Japan, Izu-Bonin, Mariana and West Philippine subduction zones. Most of the detected heterogeneities are located in the crust and upper mantle, but 6 per cent of scatterers are located deeper than 600 km. Scatterers in the transition zone correlate well with edges of fast features in tomographic images and subducted slab contours derived from slab seismicity. We locate deeper scatterers beneath the Izu-Bonin/Mariana subduction zones, which outline a steeply dipping pseudo-planar feature to 1480 km depth, and beneath the ancient (84-144 Ma) Indonesian subduction trench down to 1880 km depth. We image the remnants of subducted crustal material, likely the underside reflection of the subducted Moho. The presence of deep scatterers related to past and present subduction provides evidence that the subducted crust does descend into the lower mantle at least for these steeply dipping subduction zones. Applying the same technique to other source-receiver paths will increase our knowledge of the small-scale structure of the mantle and will provide further constraints on geodynamic models.

  17. A non extensive statistical physics analysis of the Hellenic subduction zone seismicity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vallianatos, F.; Papadakis, G.; Michas, G.; Sammonds, P.

    2012-04-01

    The Hellenic subduction zone is the most seismically active region in Europe [Becker & Meier, 2010]. The spatial and temporal distribution of seismicity as well as the analysis of the magnitude distribution of earthquakes concerning the Hellenic subduction zone, has been studied using the concept of Non-Extensive Statistical Physics (NESP) [Tsallis, 1988 ; Tsallis, 2009]. Non-Extensive Statistical Physics, which is a generalization of Boltzmann-Gibbs statistical physics, seems a suitable framework for studying complex systems (Vallianatos, 2011). Using this concept, Abe & Suzuki (2003;2005) investigated the spatial and temporal properties of the seismicity in California and Japan and recently Darooneh & Dadashinia (2008) in Iran. Furthermore, Telesca (2011) calculated the thermodynamic parameter q of the magnitude distribution of earthquakes of the southern California earthquake catalogue. Using the external seismic zones of 36 seismic sources of shallow earthquakes in the Aegean and the surrounding area [Papazachos, 1990], we formed a dataset concerning the seismicity of shallow earthquakes (focal depth ? 60km) of the subduction zone, which is based on the instrumental data of the Geodynamic Institute of the National Observatory of Athens (http://www.gein.noa.gr/, period 1990-2011). The catalogue consists of 12800 seismic events which correspond to 15 polygons of the aforementioned external seismic zones. These polygons define the subduction zone, as they are associated with the compressional stress field which characterizes a subducting regime. For each event, moment magnitude was calculated from ML according to the suggestions of Papazachos et al. (1997). The cumulative distribution functions of the inter-event times and the inter-event distances as well as the magnitude distribution for each seismic zone have been estimated, presenting a variation in the q-triplet along the Hellenic subduction zone. The models used, fit rather well to the observed distributions, implying the complexity of the spatiotemporal properties of seismicity and the usefulness of NESP in investigating such phenomena, exhibiting scale-free nature and long range memory effects. Acknowledgments. This work was supported in part by the THALES Program of the Ministry of Education of Greece and the European Union in the framework of the project entitled "Integrated understanding of Seismicity, using innovative Methodologies of Fracture mechanics along with Earthquake and non extensive statistical physics - Application to the geodynamic system of the Hellenic Arc. SEISMO FEAR HELLARC". GM and GP wish to acknowledge the partial support of the Greek State Scholarships Foundation (???).

  18. A look inside of diamond-forming media in deep subduction zones

    PubMed Central

    Dobrzhinetskaya, Larissa F.; Wirth, Richard; Green, Harry W.

    2007-01-01

    Geologists have “known” for many years that continental crust is buoyant and cannot be subducted very deep. Microdiamonds 10–80 ?m in size discovered in the 1980s within metamorphic rocks related to continental collisions clearly refute this statement, suggesting that material of continental crust has been subducted to a minimum depth of >150 km and incorporated into mountain chains during tectonic exhumation. Over the past decade, the rapidly moving technological advancement has made it possible to examine these diamonds in detail, and to learn that they contain nanometric multiphase inclusions of crystalline and fluid phases and are characterized by a “crustal” signature of carbon stable isotopes. Scanning and transmission electron microscopy, focused ion beam techniques, synchrotron infrared spectroscopy, and nano-secondary ion mass spectrometry studies of these diamonds provide evidence that they were crystallized from a supercritical carbon-oxygen-hydrogen fluid. These microdiamonds preserve evidence of the pathway by which carbon and water can be subducted to mantle depths and returned back to the earth's surface. PMID:17389388

  19. A look inside of diamond-forming media in deep subduction zones.

    PubMed

    Dobrzhinetskaya, Larissa F; Wirth, Richard; Green, Harry W

    2007-05-29

    Geologists have "known" for many years that continental crust is buoyant and cannot be subducted very deep. Microdiamonds 10-80 microm in size discovered in the 1980s within metamorphic rocks related to continental collisions clearly refute this statement, suggesting that material of continental crust has been subducted to a minimum depth of >150 km and incorporated into mountain chains during tectonic exhumation. Over the past decade, the rapidly moving technological advancement has made it possible to examine these diamonds in detail, and to learn that they contain nanometric multiphase inclusions of crystalline and fluid phases and are characterized by a "crustal" signature of carbon stable isotopes. Scanning and transmission electron microscopy, focused ion beam techniques, synchrotron infrared spectroscopy, and nano-secondary ion mass spectrometry studies of these diamonds provide evidence that they were crystallized from a supercritical carbon-oxygen-hydrogen fluid. These microdiamonds preserve evidence of the pathway by which carbon and water can be subducted to mantle depths and returned back to the earth's surface. PMID:17389388

  20. A Look Inside of Diamond-Forming Media in Deep Subduction Zones

    SciTech Connect

    Dobrzhinetskaya,L.; Wirth, R.; Green, II, H.

    2007-01-01

    Geologists have 'known' for many years that continental crust is buoyant and cannot be subducted very deep. Microdiamonds 10-80 {mu}m in size discovered in the 1980s within metamorphic rocks related to continental collisions clearly refute this statement, suggesting that material of continental crust has been subducted to a minimum depth of > 150 km and incorporated into mountain chains during tectonic exhumation. Over the past decade, the rapidly moving technological advancement has made it possible to examine these diamonds in detail, and to learn that they contain nanometric multiphase inclusions of crystalline and fluid phases and are characterized by a 'crustal' signature of carbon stable isotopes. Scanning and transmission electron microscopy, focused ion beam techniques, synchrotron infrared spectroscopy, and nano-secondary ion mass spectrometry studies of these diamonds provide evidence that they were crystallized from a supercritical carbon-oxygen-hydrogen fluid. These microdiamonds preserve evidence of the pathway by which carbon and water can be subducted to mantle depths and returned back to the earth's surface.

  1. Petrofabrics of high-pressure rocks exhumed at the slab-mantle interface from the "point of no return" in a subduction zone (Sivrihisar, Turkey)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whitney, Donna L.; Teyssier, Christian; Seaton, Nicholas C. A.; Fornash, Katherine F.

    2014-12-01

    The highest pressure recorded by metamorphic rocks exhumed from oceanic subduction zones is ~2.5 GPa, corresponding to the maximum decoupling depth (MDD) (80 ± 10 km) identified in active subduction zones; beyond the MDD (the "point of no return") exhumation is unlikely. The Sivrihisar massif (Turkey) is a coherent terrane of lawsonite eclogite and blueschist facies rocks in which assemblages and fabrics record P-T-fluid-deformation conditions during exhumation from ~80 to 45 km. Crystallographic fabrics and other features of high-pressure metasedimentary and metabasaltic rocks record transitions during exhumation. In quartzite, microstructures and crystallographic fabrics record deformation in the dislocation creep regime, including dynamic recrystallization during decompression, and a transition from prism slip to activation of rhomb and basal slip that may be related to a decrease in water fugacity during decompression (~2.5 to ~1.5 GPa). Phengite, lawsonite, and omphacite or glaucophane in quartzite and metabasalt remained stable during deformation, and omphacite developed an L-type crystallographic fabric. In marble, aragonite developed columnar textures with strong crystallographic fabrics that persisted during partial to complete dynamic recrystallization that was likely achieved in the stability field of aragonite (P > ~1.2 GPa). Results of kinematic vorticity analysis based on lawsonite shape fabrics are consistent with shear criteria in quartzite and metabasalt and indicate a large component of coaxial deformation in the exhuming channel beneath a simple shear dominated interface. This large coaxial component may have multiplied the exhuming power of the subduction channel and forced deeply subducted rocks to flow back from the point of no return.

  2. Evolution of the northern Sierra Nevada metamorphic belt: Petrological, structural, and Ar/Ar constraints

    SciTech Connect

    Hacker, B.R.

    1993-05-01

    The Sierra Nevada metamorphic belt constitutes an important record of the growth of continental crust from essentially oceanic materials. In the northern Sierra, the central part of the belt is made up of volcanoplutonic arcs and sediment-dominated units inferred to be accretionary wedges or closed ocean basins. The latter are broken formation and melange composed of radiolarian chert, lava, and volcanogenic and continental turbidites. Sedimentary detritus in the largest of these units can be plausibly linked to sources farther east in the Sierra, suggesting that deposition occurred near the eastern Sierran arc. Isoclinal folds, steeply dipping foliations, and steeply plunging down-dip lineations are characteristics structures. The westernmost unit is only feebly recrystallized, and deformation was accomplished principally by stress solution and local redeposition in veins. More easterly, inboard units are compositionally similar, but they recrystallized at pumpellyite-actinolite-and blueschist-facies conditions and deformed via solution-transfer and dislocation creep. Phengite silica contents, the degree of quartz veining, and the locations of pseudo-isograds support an eastward increase in metamorphic pressure and temperature. Metamorphic conditions during the growth of pumpellyite and actinolite ranged from {approximately}150-350 {degrees}C and 200-400 MPa, compatible with recrystallization and deformation in subduction zones or the deeper levels of magmatic arcs. Ar/Ar ages of volcanisclastic rocks and crosscutting plutons constrain the age of deformation and metamorphism in the western part of the region to 174-165 Ma. Deformation and recrystallization in more easterly units may have been coeval or begun as early as Triassic time. 58 refs., 14 figs., 4 tabs.

  3. Mantle convection, tectonics and the evolution of the Tethyan subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jolivet, Laurent; Sternai, Pietro; Menant, Armel; Faccenna, Claudio; Becker, Thorsten; Burov, Evguenii

    2014-05-01

    Mantle convection drives plate tectonics and the size, number and thermotectonic age of plates codetermines the convection pattern. However, the degree of coupling of surface deformation and mantle flow is unclear. Most numerical models of lithospheric deformation are designed such that strain is a consequence of kinematic boundary conditions, and rarely account for basal stresses due to mantle flow. On the other hand, convection models often treat the lithosphere as a single-layer stagnant lid with vertically undeformable surface. There is thus a gap between convection models and lithospheric-scale geodynamic models. The transmission of stresses from the flowing mantle to the crust is a complex process. The presence of a ductile lower crust inhibits the upward transmission of stresses but a highly extended crust in a hot environment such as a backarc domain, with no lithospheric mantle and a ductile lower crust in direct contact with asthenosphere, will be more prone to follow the mantle flow than a thick and stratified lithosphere. We review geological observations and present reconstructions of the Aegean and Middle East and discuss the possible role played by basal drag in governing lithospheric deformation. In Mediterranean backarc regions, lithosphere-mantle coupling is effective on geological time scale as shown by the consistency of SKS fast orientations in the mantle with stretching directions in the crust. The long-term geological history of the Tethyan convergent zone suggests that asthenospheric flow has been an important player. The case of Himalaya and Tibet strongly supports a major contribution of a northward asthenospheric push, with no persistent slab that could drive India after collision, large thrust planes being then decoupling zones between deep convection and surface tectonics. The African plate repeatedly fragmented during its northward migration with the separation of Apulia and Arabia. Indeed, extension has been active on the northern side of Africa from the Jurassic until the collision in the Oligocene, and even afterward when Arabia formed by opening of the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden. This also suggests a dominant role of an underlying flow at large scale, dragging and mechanically eroding plates and breaking them into fragments, then passively carried. Only during a short period of the Late Cretaceous did the situation change drastically with the obduction event giving the large ophiolitic nappes observed from Oman to Turkey. This obduction event has never been really explained. It has been shown to be coeval with faster plate velocities and more active formation of oceanic crust globally, which in turn suggests a link with deep mantle convection. We discuss this succession of events and propose to relate them with the basal drag induced by convective mantle flow below the African continental lithosphere. We discuss the effects of convection on crustal deformation at different scales from deep convection related to plumes and subduction zones to more local mantle flow due to slab retreat and tearing.

  4. Ultramafic cumulates of oceanic mantle affinity in a continental subduction zone: UHP garnet

    E-print Network

    Hattori, Kéiko H.

    resembles Cpx in primitive olivine-rich gabbros from an oceanic spreading ridge [3], and (b) high-Ti cpx (1*/Eu 1.0-2.3). This suggests that the protoliths were olivine-rich gabbros with ca. 60% olivine, 25% An

  5. Geothermal modelling of faulted metamorphic crystalline crust: a new model of the Continental Deep Drilling Site KTB (Germany)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szalaiová, Eva; Rabbel, Wolfgang; Marquart, Gabriele; Vogt, Christian

    2015-11-01

    The area of the 9.1-km-deep Continental Deep Drillhole (KTB) in Germany is used as a case study for a geothermal reservoir situated in folded and faulted metamorphic crystalline crust. The presented approach is based on the analysis of 3-D seismic reflection data combined with borehole data and hydrothermal numerical modelling. The KTB location exemplarily contains all elements that make seismic prospecting in crystalline environment often more difficult than in sedimentary units, basically complicated tectonics and fracturing and low-coherent strata. In a first step major rock units including two known nearly parallel fault zones are identified down to a depth of 12 km. These units form the basis of a gridded 3-D numerical model for investigating temperature and fluid flow. Conductive and advective heat transport takes place mainly in a metamorphic block composed of gneisses and metabasites that show considerable differences in thermal conductivity and heat production. Therefore, in a second step, the structure of this unit is investigated by seismic waveform modelling. The third step of interpretation consists of applying wavenumber filtering and log-Gabor-filtering for locating fractures. Since fracture networks are the major fluid pathways in the crystalline, we associate the fracture density distribution with distributions of relative porosity and permeability that can be calibrated by logging data and forward modelling of the temperature field. The resulting permeability distribution shows values between 10-16 and 10-19 m2 and does not correlate with particular rock units. Once thermohydraulic rock properties are attributed to the numerical model, the differential equations for heat and fluid transport in porous media are solved numerically based on a finite difference approach. The hydraulic potential caused by topography and a heat flux of 54 mW m-2 were applied as boundary conditions at the top and bottom of the model. Fluid flow is generally slow and mainly occurring within the two fault zones. Thus, our model confirms the previous finding that diffusive heat transport is the dominant process at the KTB site. Fitting the observed temperature-depth profile requires a correction for palaeoclimate of about 4 K at 1 km depth. Modelled and observed temperature data fit well within 0.2 °C bounds. Whereas thermal conditions are suitable for geothermal energy production, hydraulic conditions are unfavourable without engineered stimulation.

  6. High-temperature metamorphism during extreme thinning of the continental crust: a reappraisal of the north Pyrenean paleo-passive margin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clerc, C.; Lahfid, A.; Monié, P.; Lagabrielle, Y.; Chopin, C.; Poujol, M.; Boulvais, P.; Ringenbach, J.-C.; Masini, E.; de St Blanquat, M.

    2015-02-01

    An increasing number of field examples in mountain belts show that the formation of passive margins during extreme continent thinning may occur under conditions of high to very high thermal gradient beneath a thin cover of syn-rift sediments. Orogenic belts resulting from the tectonic inversion of distal margins and regions of exhumed continental mantle may exhibit high-temperature, low-pressure (HT-LP) metamorphism and coeval syn-extensional, ductile deformation. Recent studies have shown that the northern flank of the Pyrenean belt, especially the North Pyrenean Zone, is one of the best examples of such inverted hot, passive margin. In this study, we provide a map of HT-LP metamorphism based on a dataset of more than one hundred peak-temperature estimates obtained using Raman spectroscopy of the carbonaceous material (RSCM). This dataset is completed by previous PT estimates based on mineral assemblages, and new Ar-Ar (amphibole, micas) and U-Pb (titanite) ages from metamorphic and magmatic rocks of the North Pyrenean Zone. The implications on the geological evolution of the Cretaceous Pyrenean paleomargins are discussed. Ages range mainly from 110 to 90 Ma and no westward or eastward propagation of the metamorphism and magmatism can be clearly identified. In contrast, the new data reveal a progressive propagation of the thermal anomaly from the base to the surface of the continental crust. Focusing on the key-localities of the Mauléon Basin, Arguenos-Moncaup, Lherz, Boucheville and the Bas-Agly, we analyse the thermal conditions prevailing during the Cretaceous crustal thinning. The results are synthetized into a series of three regional thematic maps, and into two detailed maps of the Arguenos-Moncaup and Lherz areas. The results indicate a first-order control of the thermal gradient by the intensity of crustal thinning. The highest grades of metamorphism are intimately associated with the areas where subcontinental mantle rocks have been unroofed or exhumed.

  7. Compaction Further Enhances Inelastic Wedge Failure in Shallow Subduction Zone Earthquakes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ma, S.; Hirakawa, E. T.

    2014-12-01

    Accretionary wedges in the subduction zone are typically highly porous due to continuous influx of unconsolidated sediments on the seafloor. A well-known deformation mode for porous materials is compaction. When porous materials are compacted in the undrained condition (as in the rapid loading of earthquake rupture) the pore pressure increases significantly when pore space closes while pore fluids are largely incompressible, resulting in a much larger pore pressure increase than that by the elastic compression alone. In this work, we incorporate compaction in our poroplastic model of shallow subduction zone earthquakes (Ma, 2012; Ma and Hirakawa, 2013) by using an end-cap yield criterion (e.g., Wong, 1997). We show that for a wedge on the verge of compactant failure initially (due to large porosity) up-dip rupture causes significant wedge compaction, which induces large pore pressure increase, reduces effective stress, and causes more easily shear failure. The wedge needs not be on the verge of Coulomb failure initially. Dilatancy accompanying shear failure near the end of deformation process can reduce volume loss due to initial compaction, resulting in a small net volumetric plastic strain. Compaction significantly enhances failure in the wedge, which makes our wedge-failure mechanism more plausible in explaining well-documented anomalous observations for shallow subduction zone earthquakes, such as slow rupture velocity, efficient tsunami generation, deficiency in high-frequency radiation, and low moment-scaled radiated energy. The dynamically elevated pore pressure may also explain numerous observations on the hydrologic activities in the wedge (e.g., mud volcanoes).

  8. A Thick, Deformed Sedimentary Wedge in an Erosional Subduction Zone, Southern Costa Rica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Silver, E. A.; Kluesner, J. W.; Edwards, J. H.; Vannucchi, P.

    2014-12-01

    A paradigm of erosional subduction zones is that the lower part of the wedge is composed of strong, crystalline basement (Clift and Vannucchi, Rev. Geophys., 42, RG2001, 2004). The CRISP 3D seismic reflection study of the southern part of the Costa Rica subduction zone shows quite the opposite. Here the slope is underlain by a series of fault-cored anticlines, with faults dipping both landward and seaward that root into the plate boundary. Deformation intensity increases with depth, and young, near-surface deformation follows that of the deeper structures but with basin inversions indicating a dynamic evolution (Edwards et al., this meeting). Fold wavelength increases landward, consistent with the folding of a landward-thickening wedge. Offscraping in accretion is minimal because incoming sediments on the lower plate are very thin. Within the wedge, thrust faulting dominates at depth in the wedge, whereas normal faulting dominates close to the surface, possibly reflecting uplift of the deforming anticlines. Normal faults form a mesh of NNW and ENE-trending structures, whereas thrust faults are oriented approximately parallel to the dominant fold orientation, which in turn follows the direction of roughness on the subducting plate. Rapid subduction erosion just prior to 2 Ma is inferred from IODP Expedition 334 (Vannucchi et al., 2013, Geology, 49:995-998). Crystalline basement may have been largely removed from the slope region during this rapid erosional event, and the modern wedge may consist of rapidly redeposited material (Expedition 344 Scientists, 2013) that has been undergoing deformation since its inception, producing a structure quite different from that expected of an eroding subduction zone.

  9. Estimation of strong ground motions from hypothetical earthquakes on the Cascadia subduction zone, Pacific Northwest

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Heaton, T.H.; Hartzell, S.H.

    1989-01-01

    Strong ground motions are estimated for the Pacific Northwest assuming that large shallow earthquakes, similar to those experienced in southern Chile, southwestern Japan, and Colombia, may also occur on the Cascadia subduction zone. Fifty-six strong motion recordings for twenty-five subduction earthquakes of Ms???7.0 are used to estimate the response spectra that may result from earthquakes Mw<81/4. Large variations in observed ground motion levels are noted for a given site distance and earthquake magnitude. When compared with motions that have been observed in the western United States, large subduction zone earthquakes produce relatively large ground motions at surprisingly large distances. An earthquake similar to the 22 May 1960 Chilean earthquake (Mw 9.5) is the largest event that is considered to be plausible for the Cascadia subduction zone. This event has a moment which is two orders of magnitude larger than the largest earthquake for which we have strong motion records. The empirical Green's function technique is used to synthesize strong ground motions for such giant earthquakes. Observed teleseismic P-waveforms from giant earthquakes are also modeled using the empirical Green's function technique in order to constrain model parameters. The teleseismic modeling in the period range of 1.0 to 50 sec strongly suggests that fewer Green's functions should be randomly summed than is required to match the long-period moments of giant earthquakes. It appears that a large portion of the moment associated with giant earthquakes occurs at very long periods that are outside the frequency band of interest for strong ground motions. Nevertheless, the occurrence of a giant earthquake in the Pacific Northwest may produce quite strong shaking over a very large region. ?? 1989 Birkha??user Verlag.

  10. Absolute plate motions since 130 Ma constrained by subduction zone kinematics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williams, Simon; Flament, Nicolas; Dietmar Müller, R.; Butterworth, Nathaniel

    2015-05-01

    The absolute motions of the lithospheric plates relative to the Earth's deep interior are commonly constrained using observations from paleomagnetism and age-progressive seamount trails. In contrast, an absolute plate motion (APM) model linking surface plate motions to subducted slab remnants mapped from seismic tomography has recently been proposed. Absolute plate motion models (or "reference frames") derived using different methodologies, different subsets of hotspots, or differing assumptions of hotspot motion, have contrasting implications for parameters that describe the long term state of the plate-mantle system, such as the balance between advance and retreat of subduction zones, plate velocities, and net lithospheric rotation. Previous studies of contemporary plate motions have used subduction zone kinematics as a constraint on the most likely APM model. Here we use a relative plate motion model to compute these values for the last 130 Myr for a range of alternative reference frames, and quantitatively compare the results. We find that hotspot and tomographic slab-remnant reference frames yield similar results for the last 70 Myr. For the 130-70 Ma period, where hotspot reference frames are less well constrained, these models yield a much more dispersed distribution of slab advance and retreat velocities. By contrast, plate motions calculated using the slab-remnant reference frame, or using a reference frame designed to minimise net rotation, yield more consistent subduction zone kinematics for times older than 70 Ma. Introducing the global optimisation of trench migration characteristics as a key criterion in the construction of APM models forms the foundation of a new method of constraining APMs (and in particular paleolongitude) in deep geological time.

  11. Trace element behavior in hydrothermal experiments: Implications for fluid processes at shallow depths in subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    You, C.-F.; Castillo, P. R.; Gieskes, J. M.; Chan, L. H.; Spivack, A. J.

    1996-05-01

    Chemical evaluation of fluids affected during progressive water-sediment interactions provides critical information regarding the role of slab dehydration and/or crustal recycling in subduction zones. To place some constraints on geochemical processes during sediment subduction, reactions between décollement sediments and synthetic NaCl-CaCl 2 solutions at 25-350°C and 800 bar were monitored in laboratory hydrothermal experiments using an autoclave apparatus. This is the first attempt in a single set of experiments to investigate the relative mobilities of many subduction zone volatiles and trace elements but, because of difficulties in conducting hydrothermal experiments on sediments at high P-T conditions, the experiments could only be designed for a shallow (˜ 10 km) depth. The experimental results demonstrate mobilization of volatiles (B and NH 4) and incompatible elements (As, Be, Cs, Li, Pb, Rb) in hydrothermal fluids at relatively low temperatures (˜ 300°C). In addition, a limited fractionation of light from heavy rare earth elements (REEs) occurs under hydrothermal conditions. On the other hand, the high field strength elements (HFSEs) Cr, Hf, Nb, Ta, Ti, and Zr are not mobile in the reacted fluids. The observed behavior of volatiles and trace elements in hydrothermal fluids is similar to the observed enrichment in As, B, Cs, Li, Pb, Rb, and light REEs and depletion in HFSEs in arc magmas relative to magmas derived directly from the upper mantle. Thus, our work suggests a link between relative mobilities of trace elements in hydrothermal fluids and deep arc magma generation in subduction zones. The experimental results are highly consistent with the proposal that the addition of subduction zone hydrous fluids to the subarc mantle, which has been depleted by previous melting events, can produce the unique characteristics of arc magmas. Moreover, the results suggest that deeply subducted sediments may no longer have the composition necessary to generate the other distinct characteristics, such as the B-? 11 B and B- 10Be systematics, of arc lavas. Finally, the mobilization of B, Cs, Pb, and light REEs relative to heavy REEs in the hydrothermal fluids fractionate the ratios of B/Be, B/Nb, Cs/Rb, Pb/Ce, La/Ba and LREE/HREE, which behave conservatively during normal magmatic processes. These results demonstrate that the composition of slab-derived fluids has great implications for the recycling of elements; not only in arc magmas but also in mantle plumes.

  12. Decarbonation efficiency in modern subduction zones and the source of high Cretaceous pCO2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turchyn, A. V.; Edmonds, M.; Johnston, F. K.

    2011-12-01

    Arc volcanism at subduction zones plays a fundamental role in the long-term carbon cycle. In its simplest form, the long term carbon cycle is comprised of four major processes: CO2 is supplied to the atmosphere by volcanic degassing in arcs, CO2 is removed from the atmosphere through silicate weathering reactions, carbon is deposited in the oceans as calcium carbonate, and returned to the mantle or the atmosphere via subduction and subduction-related volcanoes, respectively. It has been hypothesized that arc-volcanic carbon output may have been particularly important in the Cretaceous Greenhouse, when subduction of the carbonate-rich Tethys ocean crust could have led to enhanced CO2 outgassing rates and thus an overall warmer climate. Previous studies have suggested, however, that the devolatilization of subducting sediments and altered oceanic crust is critically dependent on the thermal structure of the downgoing slab [Kerrick and Connolly, 2001]: most subducting sediments are devolatilized in the forearc and do not contribute to subarc volcanism. We make a first attempt to compile a global modern inventory of 'decarbonation efficiencies' of subduction zones and apply our findings to the likely subduction zones in the Tethys. Similar to previous studies, our analysis indicates that the thermal structure of subduction zones controls the extent and depth of slab decarbonation, while the sediment geochemistry may be of secondary importance. The calculated decarbonation efficiency of modern arcs ranges from 18-70%. We highlight the importance of the composition and thickness of the overlying crust, and the importance of crustal contamination of magmas by platform carbonates in the Andes and Lesser Antilles. We suggest that over geological time, the proportion of subduction under thick continents (e.g. Andes) versus subduction under thin continents or ocean crust (e.g. Central America) may be critical for modulating long term CO2 outgassing from volcanoes. This analysis allows us to make inferences about the potential volcanic CO2 flux from subduction of the Tethys during the Cretaceous, suggesting between a 8 and 222% increase over modern CO2 outgassing. We suggest that the primary reason for the increase in CO2 outgassing in the Cretaceous is contamination of arc magmas by platform carbonates in the overlying crust, the subduction of highly 'decarbonation-efficient' crust, in addition to the increased subduction of carbonate-bearing sediments. A number of uncertainties remain, however, particularly regarding the quantification of accurate carbon outputs from arc volcanoes (during both eruptive and non-eruptive periods), and the importance of altered oceanic crust as a carbon source, which will require focused future studies.

  13. Shallow velocity structure of the Alaska Peninsula subduction zone and implications for controls on seismic behavior

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, J.; Shillington, D. J.; Becel, A.; Nedimovic, M. R.; Kuehn, H.; Webb, S. C.; Abers, G. A.; Keranen, K. M.; Saffer, D. M.

    2014-12-01

    Downdip and along-strike variations in the seismic behavior of subduction zone megathrust faults are thought to be strongly controlled by changes in the material properties along the plate boundary. Roughness and hydration of the incoming plate, fluid pressure and lithology in the subducting sediment channel are likely to control the distribution of shallower rupture. Here, we focus on the subduction zone offshore of the Alaska Peninsula. In 2011, the ALEUT program acquired deep penetration multichannel seismic (MCS) reflection and ocean bottom seismometer (OBS) data across the apparently freely sliding Shumagin Gap, the locked Semidi segment that last ruptured in 1938 M8.2 earthquake, and the locked western Kodiak asperity, which ruptured in the 1964 M9.2 earthquake. Seismic reflection data from the ALEUT cruise reveal significant variability in the thickness of sediment on the incoming plate and entering the trench, and the roughness and degree of hydration of the incoming plate. Oceanic crust entering the trench in the Shumagin gap is rugged with extensive faults and only a thin layer of sediment (<0.5 km thick). Farther east in the Semidi segment, the subducting plate has a smoother surface with thicker sediments (~1 km thick) and less faulting/hydration. To better constrain the properties of the accretionary prism and shallow part of the plate boundary, we are undertaking travel time tomography using reflection/refraction phases in OBS and MCS data, and constraints on the interface geometry from MCS images to estimate the detailed shallow velocity structure, with particular focus on properties within the shallow subduction channel. We observe refractions and reflections in OBS data from the shallow part of the subduction zone in both the Shumagin Gap and Semidi segment, including reflections off the top and base of what appears to be a layer of subducting sediment, which can be used for this work. We plan to present initial models of the shallow part of the subduction zone from both segments and discuss comparisons between the two.

  14. Formation of metamorphic core complexes in non-over-thickened continental crust: A case study of Liaodong Peninsula (East Asia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Kun; Burov, Evgueni; Gumiaux, Charles; Chen, Yan; Lu, Gang; Mezri, Leila; Zhao, Liang

    2015-12-01

    Pre-thickened hot orogenic crust is often considered a necessary condition for the formation of continental metamorphic core complexes (MCCs). However, the discovery of MCCs in the Liaodong Peninsula, where the crust has a normal thickness (~ 35 km), challenges the universality of this scenario. Therefore, we implement a series of 2-D numerical thermo-mechanical modeling experiments in which we investigate the conditions of MCC formation in normal crusts, as well as the relationships between the underlying mechanisms and the syn-rift basin evolution. In these experiments, we explore the impact of the lithostratigraphic and thermo-rheological structure of the crust. We also examine the lithosphere thickness, strain softening, extension rate, and surface erosion/ sedimentation processes. The experiments demonstrate that high thermal gradients and crustal heterogeneities result only in a symmetric spreading dome, which is geometrically incompatible with the observations of the MCCs in the Liaodong Peninsula. According to our further findings, the strain softening should play a key role in the development of asymmetric strain localization and domal topography uplift, while synchronous surface erosion controls the polarity of the syn-rift basin. The synthetic model data are compatible with the geological observations and cooling history based on the thermo-chronology for the eastern part of the East Asia during the late Mesozoic to the early Cenozoic. The model-predicted P-T-t paths are essentially different from those inferred for the other known MCCs, confirming the exceptional character of the MCC formation in the wide rift system of the East Asia.

  15. Magnetic properties of Archean gneisses from the northeastern North China Craton: the relationship between magnetism and metamorphic grade in the deep continental crust

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Hongcai; Liu, Qingsheng; Zhao, Weihua; Li, Zhiyong; Zheng, Jianping

    2015-04-01

    Magnetic mineralogy of crustal rocks has important implications for understanding continental crustal evolution and origin of regional magnetic anomalies. However, magnetic properties of the deep continental crust are still poorly understood. In this paper, measurements of density (?), mass-specific magnetic susceptibility (?), natural remanent magnetization (NRM) and magnetic hysteresis loops, temperature-dependent magnetic susceptibility (?-T), chemical and mineral analyses were conducted on Archean gneiss samples from the Jixian petrophysical section in the Precambrian terrain, northeastern North China Craton, with the aim of refining understanding of magnetic phase transformations in the deep crustal rocks. Results show that density and rock magnetic properties change distinctly with metamorphic facies. The dominant magnetic mineral is magnetite, while a little hematite is present in a few samples. Together with geochemical and mineralogical compositions, it is inferred that progressive increase in metamorphic grade from east to west is the major cause for magnetic enhancement of the lower crust in the studied section. Therefore, we conclude that study of magnetic phases of deep crustal rocks can offer important insights into the history of high metamorphic grade terranes.

  16. Magmatic and metamorphic development of an early to mid-Paleozoic continental margin arc in the southernmost Central Asian Orogenic Belt, Inner Mongolia, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Wei; Jian, Ping; Kröner, Alfred; Shi, Yuruo

    2013-08-01

    The Bainaimiao arc in Inner Mongolia, China, comprises a weakly metamorphosed volcani-sedimentary sequence and a low-P/T metamorphic complex. In this study we present SHRIMP zircon ages and geochemical data to document the temporal and genetic relationships between these two tectonic units. Zircons from a rhyolite and two dacites (high-K calc-alkaline) of the volcani-sedimentary sequence yielded 206Pb/238U ages of 474 ± 7 Ma, 453 ± 7 Ma and 436 ± 9 Ma respectively, that we interpret as recording the timing of three volcanic arc episodes. Rocks from the low-P/T metamorphic complex yielded zircon ages of 462 ± 11 Ma for a sillimanite gneiss and 437 ± 5 Ma for a plagioclase-hornblende gneiss, reflecting two distinct anatectic events. Also from the low-P/T complex, the protolith age of a metadiorite is 438 ± 2 Ma. A diorite from a weakly deformed diorite-granodiorite pluton in the low-P/T complex has a zircon age of 419 ± 10 Ma that correlates in time with regional collisional magmatism. An undeformed pegmatite dike cutting the low-P/T metamorphic complex has an age of 411 ± 8 Ma, which postdates collision and provides an upper limit for the termination of orogeny. Accordingly, we conclude that the volcani-sedimentary sequence and the low-P/T metamorphic complex evolved coherently in the early to mid-Paleozoic and formed an integral continental margin arc in the southernmost Central Asian Orogenic Belt.

  17. Implications of estimated magmatic additions and recycling losses at the subduction zones of accretionary (non-collisional) and collisional (suturing) orogens

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Scholl, D. W.; Von Huene, R.

    2009-01-01

    Arc magmatism at subduction zones (SZs) most voluminously supplies juvenile igneous material to build rafts of continental and intra-oceanic or island arc (CIA) crust. Return or recycling of accumulated CIA material to the mantle is also most vigorous at SZs. Recycling is effected by the processes of sediment subduction, subduction erosion, and detachment and sinking of deeply underthrust sectors of CIA crust. Long-term (>10-20 Ma) rates of additions and losses can be estimated from observational data gathered where oceanic crust underruns modern, long-running (Cenozoic to mid-Mesozoic) ocean-margin subduction zones (OMSZs, e.g. Aleutian and South America SZs). Long-term rates can also be observationally assessed at Mesozoic and older crust-suturing subduction zone (CSSZs) where thick bodies of CIA crust collided in tectonic contact (e.g. Wopmay and Appalachian orogens, India and SE Asia). At modern OMSZs arc magmatic additions at intra-oceanic arcs and at continental margins are globally estimated at c. 1.5 AU and c. 1.0 AU, respectively (1 AU, or Armstrong Unit,= 1 km3 a-1 of solid material). During collisional suturing at fossil CSSZs, global arc magmatic addition is estimated at 0.2 AU. This assessment presumes that in the past the global length of crustal collision zones averaged c. 6000 km, which is one-half that under way since the early Tertiary. The average long-term rate of arc magmatic additions extracted from modern OMSZs and older CSSZs is thus evaluated at 2.7 AU. Crustal recycling at Mesozoic and younger OMSZs is assessed at c. 60 km3 Ma-1 km-1 (c. 60% by subduction erosion). The corresponding global recycling rate is c. 2.5 AU. At CSSZs of Mesozoic, Palaeozoic and Proterozoic age, the combined upper and lower plate losses of CIA crust via subduction erosion, sediment subduction, and lower plate crustal detachment and sinking are assessed far less securely at c. 115 km3 Ma-1 km-1. At a global length of 6000 km, recycling at CSSZs is accordingly c. 0.7 AU. The collective loss of CIA crust estimated for modern OMSZs and for older CSSZs is thus estimated at c. 3.2 AU. SZ additions (2.7 AU) and subtractions (23.2 AU) are similar. Because many uncertainties and assumptions are involved in assessing and applying them to the deep past, the net growth of CIA crust during at least Phanerozoic time is viewed as effectively nil. With increasing uncertainty, the long-term balance can be applied to the Proterozoic, but not before the initiation of the present style of subduction at c. 3 Ga. Allowing that since this time a rounded-down rate of recycling of 3 AU is applicable, a startlingly high volume of CIA crust equal to that existing now has been recycled to the mantle. Although the recycled volume (c. 9 ?? 109 km3) is small (c. 1%) compared with that of the mantle, it is large enough to impart to the mantle the signature of recycled CIA crust. Because subduction zones are not spatially fixed, and their average global lengths have episodically been less or greater than at present, recycling must have contributed significantly to creating recognized heterogeneities in mantle geochemistry. ?? The Geological Society of London 2009.

  18. Early to Middle Ordovician organized and disorganized supra-subduction zone spreading along the Laurentian margin of Iapetus, Newfoundland Appalachians

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zagorevski, Alexandre; van Staal, Cees R.; McNicoll, Vicki J.; Cutts, Jamie A.

    2013-04-01

    The Annieopsquotch accretionary tract (AAT) comprises a thrust stack of Lower to Middle Ordovician arc and backarc terranes that were accreted to the Laurentian margin of Iapetus during Middle to Upper Ordovician. Geological relationships suggest that the constituent terranes of the AAT initially formed outboard of composite Laurentian margin in an extensional arc that underwent multiple rifting episodes prior to its accretion. The initiation of AAT magmatism led to the development of Tremadocian to Floian supra-subduction zone ophiolites with organized ridges indicated by well developed sheeted dyke complexes. This spreading centre propagated through a fragment of Laurentian crust and separated it from the composite Laurentian margin. This crustal block formed the basement to subsequent Floian to Darriwilian AAT arc magmatism. The Floian arc rifted leading to organized spreading in the Lloyds River backarc basin which was floored by juvenile backarc ophiolitic crust. The latest Floian to earliest Dapingian arc magmatism occurred above thickened crust, locally leading to eruption of andesitic rocks. The establishment of the Darriwilian arc was in part coeval with and followed yet another stage of rifting. Darriwilian magmatism is characterised by great along-strike variability, ranging from continental to intraoceanic calc-alkaline arc to tholeiitic back-arc magmatism, and lack of sheeted dyke complexes. The diversity of the magmatism can be attributed to fragmentation and magmatic reworking of the Laurenia-derived basement along strike in the same arc that is undergoing disorganized spreading. The constituent terranes of AAT were underplated beneath the composite Laurentian margin within ~5 Ma following their formation, coeval with extensional arc magmatism. This and other constraints suggest that the AAT thrust stack formed following subduction initiation in the backarc. AAT magmatism was terminated by the closure of the main tract of Iapetus and arrival of the peri-Gondwanan Victoria arc at the Laurentian margin.

  19. Frictional properties of sediments entering the Costa Rica subduction zone offshore the Osa Peninsula: implications for fault slip in shallow subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Namiki, Yuka; Tsutsumi, Akito; Ujiie, Kohtaro; Kameda, Jun

    2014-12-01

    We examined the frictional properties of sediments on the Cocos plate offshore the Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica, and explored variations in the intrinsic frictional properties of the sediment inputs to the Costa Rica subduction zone. Sediment samples were collected at Site U1381A during the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program Expedition 334, and include hemipelagic clay to silty clay material (Unit I) and pelagic silicic to calcareous ooze (Unit II). The frictional properties of the samples were tested at a normal stress of 5 MPa under water-saturated conditions and with slip velocities ranging from 0.0028 to 2.8 mm/s for up to 340 mm of displacement. The experimental results reveal that the steady-state friction coefficient values of clay to silty clay samples are as low as ~0.2, whereas those of silicic to calcareous ooze samples are as high as 0.6 to 0.8. The clay to silty clay samples show a positive dependence of friction on velocity for all tested slip velocities. In contrast, the silicic to calcareous ooze samples show a negative dependence of friction on velocity at velocities of 0.0028 to 0.28 mm/s and either neutral or positive dependence at velocities higher than 0.28 mm/s. Given the low frictional coefficient values observed for the clay to silty clay samples of Unit I, the décollement at the Costa Rica Seismogenesis Project transect offshore the Osa Peninsula likely initiates in Unit I and is initially very weak. In addition, the velocity-strengthening behavior of the clay to silty clay suggests that faults in the very shallow portion of the Costa Rica subduction zone are stable and thus behave as creeping segments. In contrast, the velocity-weakening behavior of the silicic to calcareous ooze favors unstable slip along faults. The shallow seismicity occurred at a depth as shallow as ~9 km along the Costa Rica margin offshore the Osa Peninsula (Mw 6.4, June 2002), indicating that materials characterized by velocity-weakening behavior constitute the fault zone at the depth of the seismicity. Fault slip nucleating along a fault in Unit II would be a likely candidate for the source of the shallow earthquake event.

  20. A satellite magnetic perspective of subduction zones, large igneous provinces, rifts, and diffuse plate boundary zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Purucker, M. E.; Whaler, K. A.

    2008-12-01

    Large and intermediate-scale tectonic features such as subduction zones, large igneous provinces, rifts, and diffuse plate boundary zones are often seen to have a magnetic signature visible from the perspective of near-Earth magnetic field satellites such as CHAMP and Orsted. Why do these tectonic features have a magnetic signature, while others do not? A new model of the lithospheric field (MF-6, Maus et al., 2008) extending to spherical harmonic degree 120 (333 km wavelength) has been used to evaluate the magnetic state of the lithosphere under the assumption that the magnetization is either induced (with a seismic starting model), or remanent (with a minimum norm approach). Some of the features identified from these images include the Tethyan and NE Siberian diffuse plate boundary zones, the Red Sea rift, and Cretaceous rift basins developed on the West African shield. Almost without exception, subduction zones exhibit a magnetic signature, as do many large igneous provinces. In this talk we discuss some of the new insights this magnetic perspective provides, and speculate on the controls which determine whether tectonic features will be expressed magnetically.

  1. Exhumation of serpentinized peridotite in the northern Manila subduction zone inferred from forward gravity modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doo, Wen-Bin; Lo, Chung-Liang; Kuo-Chen, Hao; Brown, Dennis; Hsu, Shu-Kun

    2015-10-01

    The Taiwan Integrated Geodynamic Research program (TAIGER) collected two wide-angle and reflection seismic transects across the northern Manila subduction zone that provide constraints on the seismic velocity structure of the crust. Two-dimensional gravity modeling along these two transects shows a significant, relatively high density (3.12 and 3.02 g/cm3) in the fore-arc region, at the interface between the subducting Eurasian Plate and the accretionary prism in front of the Luzon arc on the overriding Philippine Sea Plate. The anomalous density in this zone is higher than that in the fore-arc crust and the accretionary prism but lower than that in mantle. Numerous geophysical and geological data, together with numerical models, have indicated that serpentinization of the fore-arc mantle is both expected and observed. Serpentinization of mantle rocks can dramatically reduce their seismic velocity and therefore their seismic velocity in a density to velocity conversion. Therefore, the source of the high-density material could be serpentinized fore-arc mantle, with serpentinization caused by the dehydration of the subducting Eurasian Plate. We interpret that positive buoyancy combined with weak plate coupling forces in the northern Manila subduction zone is resulting in this serpentinized fore-arc mantle peridotite being exhumed.

  2. Important role for organic carbon in subduction-zone fluids in the deep carbon cycle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sverjensky, Dimitri A.; Stagno, Vincenzo; Huang, Fang

    2014-12-01

    Supercritical aqueous fluids link subducting plates and the return of carbon to Earth's surface in the deep carbon cycle. The amount of carbon in the fluids and the identities of the dissolved carbon species are not known, which leaves the deep carbon budget poorly constrained. Traditional models, which assume that carbon exists in deep fluids as dissolved gas molecules, cannot predict the solubility and ionic speciation of carbon in its silicate rock environment. Recent advances enable these limitations to be overcome when evaluating the deep carbon cycle. Here we use the Deep Earth Water theoretical model to calculate carbon speciation and solubility in fluids under upper mantle conditions. We find that fluids in equilibrium with mantle peridotite minerals generally contain carbon in a dissolved gas molecule form. However, fluids in equilibrium with diamonds and eclogitic minerals in the subducting slab contain abundant dissolved organic and inorganic ionic carbon species. The high concentrations of dissolved carbon species provide a mechanism to transport large amounts of carbon out of the subduction zone, where the ionic carbon species may influence the oxidation state of the mantle wedge. Our results also identify novel mechanisms that can lead to diamond formation and the variability of carbon isotopic composition via precipitation of the dissolved organic carbon species in the subduction-zone fluids.

  3. Aftereffects of Subduction-Zone Earthquakes: Potential Tsunami Hazards along the Japan Sea Coast.

    PubMed

    Minoura, Koji; Sugawara, Daisuke; Yamanoi, Tohru; Yamada, Tsutomu

    2015-01-01

    The 2011 Tohoku-Oki Earthquake is a typical subduction-zone earthquake and is the 4th largest earthquake after the beginning of instrumental observation of earthquakes in the 19th century. In fact, the 2011 Tohoku-Oki Earthquake displaced the northeast Japan island arc horizontally and vertically. The displacement largely changed the tectonic situation of the arc from compressive to tensile. The 9th century in Japan was a period of natural hazards caused by frequent large-scale earthquakes. The aseismic tsunamis that inflicted damage on the Japan Sea coast in the 11th century were related to the occurrence of massive earthquakes that represented the final stage of a period of high seismic activity. Anti-compressive tectonics triggered by the subduction-zone earthquakes induced gravitational instability, which resulted in the generation of tsunamis caused by slope failing at the arc-back-arc boundary. The crustal displacement after the 2011 earthquake infers an increased risk of unexpected local tsunami flooding in the Japan Sea coastal areas. PMID:26399180

  4. Deep Magnetotelluric survey on Crete Island across the Hellenic Subduction Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kalisperi, D.; Smirnov, M.; Kokologiannakis, A.; Pentes, G.; Makris, J. P.

    2013-12-01

    Crete Island is located in a prominent position at the fore-arc of the Hellenic Subduction Zone (HSZ), thus enabling onshore study of the Earth's deep structure. The area is characterized by a complicated geological and geotectonic setting as well as by intense geodynamics that manifests itself in high seismicity. The aim of the ongoing research project 'MagnetoTellurics in studying Geodynamics of the hEllenic ARc (MT-GEAR)' is to contribute to the investigation of the geoelectric structure of Southern Aegean, and particularly to try to image the Hellenic Subduction Zone. In this context, onshore magnetotelluric (MT) measurements were carried out in July 2013 on Crete Island, comprising three parallel profiles aligned to the North-South (NS) direction, yielding a site spacing of about 5 to 10 km. In total, 21 broad-band MT soundings were conducted in the period range of 0.003-1000 s organized in the three 36Km, 30Km and 42Km long NS trending profiles. Data were collected using two different types of MT instruments (an EMI MT24LF and two Uppsala type MTU2000 systems) which were running simultaneously. We present the resulting model of the conductivity structure of the HSZ in the area of Crete.

  5. Effect of depth-dependent shear modulus on tsunami generation along subduction zones

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Geist, E.L.; Bilek, S.L.

    2001-01-01

    Estimates of the initial size of tsunamis generated by subduction zone earthquakes are significantly affected by the choice of shear modulus at shallow depths. Analysis of over 360 circum-Pacific subduction zone earthquakes indicates that for a given seismic moment, source duration increases significantly with decreasing depth (Bilek and Lay, 1998; 1999). Under the assumption that stress drop is constant, the increase of source duration is explained by a 5-fold reduction of shear modulus from depths of 20 km to 5 km. This much lower value of shear modulus at shallow depths in comparison to standard earth models has the effect of increasing the amount of slip estimated from seismic moment determinations, thereby increasing tsunami amplitude. The effect of using depth dependent shear modulus values is tested by modeling the tsunami from the 1992 Nicaraguan tsunami earthquake using a previously determined moment distribution (lhmle??, 1996a). We find that the tide gauge record of this tsunami is well matched by synthetics created using the depth dependent shear modulus and moment distribution. Because excitation of seismic waves also depends on elastic heterogeneity, it is important, particularly for the inversion of short period waves, that a consistent seismic/tsunami shear modulus model be used for calculating slip distributions.

  6. Automated Detection and Modeling of Slow Slip: Case Study of the Cascadia Subduction Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Crowell, B. W.; Bock, Y.; Liu, Z.

    2012-12-01

    The discovery of transient slow slip events over the past decade has changed our understanding of tectonic hazards and the earthquake cycle. Proper geodetic characterization of transient deformation is necessary for studies of regional interseismic, coseismic and postseismic tectonics, and miscalculations can affect our understanding of the regional stress field. We utilize two different methods to create a complete record of slow slip from continuous GPS stations in the Cascadia subduction zone between 1996 and 2012: spatiotemporal principal component analysis (PCA) and the relative strength index (RSI). The PCA is performed on 100 day windows of nearby stations to locate signals that exist across many stations in the network by looking at the ratio of the first two eigenvalues. The RSI is a financial momentum oscillator that looks for changes in individual time series with respect to previous epochs to locate rapid changes, indicative of transient deformation. Using both methods, we create a complete history of slow slip across the Cascadia subduction zone, fully characterizing the timing, progression, and magnitude of events. We inject the results from the automated transient detection into a time-dependent slip inversion and apply a Kalman filter based network inversion method to image the spatiotemporal variation of slip transients along the Cascadia margin.

  7. Ambient seafloor noise excited by earthquakes in the Nankai subduction zone

    PubMed Central

    Tonegawa, Takashi; Fukao, Yoshio; Takahashi, Tsutomu; Obana, Koichiro; Kodaira, Shuichi; Kaneda, Yoshiyuki

    2015-01-01

    Excitations of seismic background noises are mostly related to fluid disturbances in the atmosphere, ocean and the solid Earth. Earthquakes have not been considered as a stationary excitation source because they occur intermittently. Here we report that acoustic-coupled Rayleigh waves (at 0.7–2.0?Hz) travelling in the ocean and marine sediments, retrieved by correlating ambient noise on a hydrophone array deployed through a shallow to deep seafloor (100–4,800?m) across the Nankai Trough, Japan, are incessantly excited by nearby small earthquakes. The observed cross-correlation functions and 2D numerical simulations for wave propagation through a laterally heterogeneous ocean–crust system show that, in a subduction zone, energetic wave sources are located primarily under the seafloor in directions consistent with nearby seismicity, and secondarily in the ocean. Short-period background noise in the ocean–crust system in the Nankai subduction zone is mainly attributed to ocean-acoustic Rayleigh waves of earthquake origin. PMID:25635384

  8. Ambient seafloor noise excited by earthquakes in the Nankai subduction zone.

    PubMed

    Tonegawa, Takashi; Fukao, Yoshio; Takahashi, Tsutomu; Obana, Koichiro; Kodaira, Shuichi; Kaneda, Yoshiyuki

    2015-01-01

    Excitations of seismic background noises are mostly related to fluid disturbances in the atmosphere, ocean and the solid Earth. Earthquakes have not been considered as a stationary excitation source because they occur intermittently. Here we report that acoustic-coupled Rayleigh waves (at 0.7-2.0 Hz) travelling in the ocean and marine sediments, retrieved by correlating ambient noise on a hydrophone array deployed through a shallow to deep seafloor (100-4,800 m) across the Nankai Trough, Japan, are incessantly excited by nearby small earthquakes. The observed cross-correlation functions and 2D numerical simulations for wave propagation through a laterally heterogeneous ocean-crust system show that, in a subduction zone, energetic wave sources are located primarily under the seafloor in directions consistent with nearby seismicity, and secondarily in the ocean. Short-period background noise in the ocean-crust system in the Nankai subduction zone is mainly attributed to ocean-acoustic Rayleigh waves of earthquake origin. PMID:25635384

  9. Thrust-type subduction-zone earthquakes and seamount asperites: A physical model for seismic rupture

    SciTech Connect

    Cloos, M. )

    1992-07-01

    A thrust-type subduction-zone earthquake of M{sub W} 7.6 ruptures an area of {approximately}6,000 km{sup 2}, has a seismic slip of {approximately}1 m, and is nucleated by the rupture of an asperity {approximately}25km across. A model for thrust-type subduction-zone seismicity is proposed in which basaltic seamounts jammed against the base of the overriding plate act as strong asperities that rupture by stick-slip faulting. A M{sub W} 7.6 event would correspond to the near-basal rupture of a {approximately}2-km-tall seamount. The base of the seamount is surrounded by a low shear-strength layer composed of subducting sediment that also deforms between seismic events by distributed strain (viscous flow). Planar faults form in this layer as the seismic rupture propagates out of the seamount at speeds of kilometers per second. The faults in the shear zone are disrupted after the event by aseismic, slow viscous flow of the subducting sediment layer. Consequently, the extent of fault rupture varies for different earthquakes nucleated at the same seamount asperity because new fault surfaces form in the surrounding subducting sediment layer during each fast seismic rupture.

  10. Geophysical signature of hydration-dehydration processes in active subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reynard, Bruno

    2013-04-01

    Seismological and magneto-telluric tomographies are potential tools for imaging fluid circulation when combined with petrophysical models. Recent measurements of the physical properties of serpentine allow refining hydration of the mantle and fluid circulation in the mantle wedge from geophysical data. In the slab lithospheric mantle, serpentinization caused by bending at the trench is limited to a few kilometers below the oceanic crust (<5 km). Double Wadati-Benioff zones, 20-30 km below the crust, are explained by deformation of dry peridotites, not by serpentine dehydration. It reduces the required amount of water stored in solid phases in the slab (Reynard et al., 2010). In the cold (<700°C) fore-arc mantle wedge above the subducting slab, serpentinization is caused by the release of large amounts of hydrous fluids in the cold mantle above the dehydrating subducted plate. Low seismic velocities in the wedge give a time-integrated estimate of hydration and serpentinization. Serpentinization reaches 50-100% in hot subduction, while it is below 10% in cold subduction (Bezacier et al., 2010; Reynard, 2012). Electromagnetic profiles of the mantle wedge reveal high electrical-conductivity bodies. In hot areas of the mantle wedge (> 700°C), water released by dehydration of the slab induces melting of the mantle under volcanic arcs, explaining the observed high conductivities. In the cold melt-free wedge (< 700°C), high conductivities in electromagnetic profiles provide "instantaneous" images of fluid circulation because the measured electrical conductivity of serpentine is below 0.1 mS/m (Reynard et al., 2011). A small fraction (ca. 1% in volume) of connective high-salinity fluids accounts for the highest observed conductivities. Low-salinity fluids (? 0.1 m) released by slab dehydration evolve towards high-salinity (? 1 m) fluids during progressive serpentinization in the wedge. These fluids can mix with arc magmas at depths and account for high-chlorine melt inclusions in arc lavas. High electrical conductivities up to 1 S/m in the hydrated wedge of the hot subductions (Ryukyu, Kyushu, Cascadia) reflect high fluid concentration, while low to moderate (<0.01 S/m) conductivities in the cold subductions (N-E Japan, Bolivia) reflect low fluid flow. This is consistent with the seismic observations of extensive shallow serpentinization in hot subduction zones, while serpentinization is sluggish in cold subduction zones. Bezacier, L., et al. 2010. Elasticity of antigorite, seismic detection of serpentinites, and anisotropy in subduction zones. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 289, 198-208. Reynard, B., 2012. Serpentine in active subduction zones. Lithos, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.lithos.2012.10.012. Reynard, B., Mibe, K. & Van de Moortele, B., 2011. Electrical conductivity of the serpentinised mantle and fluid flow in subduction zones. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 307, 387-394. Reynard, B., Nakajima, J. & Kawakatsu, H., 2010. Earthquakes and plastic deformation of anhydrous slab mantle in double Wadati-Benioff zones. Geophysical Research Letters, 37, L24309.

  11. New estimates of subducted water from depths of extensional outer rise earthquakes at the Northwestern Pacific subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Emry, E. L.; Wiens, D. A.

    2012-12-01

    The presence of water within the subducting slab mantle may have important implications for subduction zone water budgets, intermediate depth earthquakes, and transport of water into Earth's deep mantle. However, the amount of water stored in hydrous slab mantle rocks prior to subduction is not well constrained. Large extensional faults formed as the plate bends at the subduction zone outer rise are thought to be the main pathway by which water can travel into and hydrate the slab mantle; yet for many subduction zones accurate depths of extensional outer rise faulting are also not well known. Therefore, we attempt to identify the maximum observed depth of extensional faulting, and thereby identify the possible depth extent of slab mantle hydration, by accurately locating and determining depths for outer rise and trench axis earthquakes at Northern and Western Pacific subduction zones. For each region, we relocate all earthquakes seaward of the trench axis as well as forearc earthquakes within 60 km landward of the trench axis using ISC arrival times and the hypocentroidal decomposition relative location algorithm. We then model P- and SH- waveforms and their associated depth phases for all earthquakes with Mw 5.0+ since 1990 that exhibit good signal-to-noise ratios and do not have shallow-dipping thrust focal mechanisms, which are indicative of subduction zone plate interface earthquakes. In total, we redetermined epicenters and depths for over 70 earthquakes at the Alaskan, Aleutian, Kamchatka, Kuril, Japan, and Izu-Bonin-Mariana trenches. We find that at most Pacific subduction zones there is evidence for extensional faulting down to 10-15 km within the top of the oceanic plate mantle, and in total, 95% of our analyzed extensional outer rise events occur within the crust or top 15 km of the mantle. However some regions, such as the Bonin and Aleutian Islands, show evidence for extensional faulting as deep as 20 km below the base of the crust. If the mantle of the subducting slab is hydrated down to ~15 km (with ~2-3.5 wt. % water), and assuming published values for the amount of water in the slab crust [1], then we expect that ~10^10 Tg/Myr of water are input into Northwestern Pacific subduction zones. This value for only the Northwestern Pacific subduction zones is then 10 times larger than previous global estimates [1] and indicates a need to reevaluate recent subduction water flux calculations. [1] Van Keken et al (2011), JGR, 116, B01401.

  12. New U-Pb Age and Trace Element Composition of Young Metamorphic Zircon Rims from the UHP Tso Morari Complex, NW Himalaya, Distinguishes Peak from Retrograde Metamorphism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leech, M. L.; Coble, M. A.; Singh, S.; Guillot, S.; Jain, A. K.

    2014-12-01

    The ultrahigh-pressure (UHP) Tso Morari Complex (TMC) sits in the footwall of the Indus-Yarlung suture zone in the NW Himalaya. The timing of metamorphism during subduction and exhumation in the complex is critical to constraining the age of the India-Asia collision. de Sigoyer et al. (2000) and Leech et al. (2005) reported mean U-Pb ages for thin outer rims of sectioned zircon between 55 ± 6 Ma and 53.3 ± 0.7 Ma, respectively, for the age of peak UHP through retrograde metamorphism, and Leech et al. (2005) used these data to calculate the minimum age for the start of continental subduction at 57 ± 1 Ma. Recently published results for the TMC have reignited debate on the age of metamorphism and thus, the timing of India-Asia collision. We used the same TM38 sample analyzed for the results described in Leech et al. (2005) and performed new SIMS U-Pb depth-profiling analyses to target only the outermost ~1.5 micron rims of zircon. Our results yield a mean age of 44.9 ± 0.7 Ma; adjacent spots for REE analyses yielded positive, enriched HREE profiles with negative Eu anomalies and corresponding Ti-in-zircon temperatures of ~550° to 680° C. Sharp boundaries between zircon domains are clearly resolved with CL and BSE imaging of TM38 zircons, and there is a large age difference between rims and protolith core ages; any mixing during depth-profiling through rims is clear. The positive HREE profiles imply the period of zircon growth in the TMC at c. 45 Ma to be retrograde. We suggest that the 47-43 Ma peak ages and flat heavy REE profiles with no Eu anomaly recently reported by Donaldson et al. (2013) on sectioned zircons, and interpreted as the age of UHP metamorphism of the TMC, may actually represent mixing between zircon rims and cores. The Leech et al. (2005) collision age of 57 ± 1 Ma assumed the TMC represents the leading edge of India. However, numerical modeling of Warren et al. (2008) suggests all exhumed material is derived from the central part of the pro-continental margin 200 km inboard of the ocean-continent transition. Recalculating using the geometric model of Leech et al. (2005) and the 53.3 ± 0.7 Ma age of peak UHP metamorphism yields a revised age of 61.1 ± 1.0 Ma for the entry of northwestern Greater Indian continental crust into the subduction zone beneath the Kohistan-Ladakh arc.

  13. JOURNAL OF GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH, VOL. 93, NO. B7, PAGES 7869-7884, JULY 10, 1988 StressTransfer and SeismicPhenomena in Coupled Subduction Zones

    E-print Network

    Dmowska, Renata

    Transfer and SeismicPhenomena in Coupled Subduction Zones During the Earthquake Cycle RENATA DMOWSKA AND JAMES R. RICE,Massachusetts An elementary mechanical model of a coupled subduction zone is presented.It is used to study the transfer contact zone with the overriding plate, during the earthquake cycle.The model assumesan elastic plate

  14. Phengite-hosted LILE enrichment in eclogite and related rocks: Implications for fluid-mediated mass transfer in subduction zones and arc magma genesis

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sorensen, Sorena S.; Grossman, J.N.; Perfit, M.R.

    1997-01-01

    Geochemical differences between island arc basalts (LAB) and ocean-floor basalts (mid-ocean ridge basalts; MORB) suggest that the large-ion lithophile elements (LILE) K, Ba, Rb and Cs are probably mobilized in subduction zone fluids and melts. This study documents LILE enrichment of eclogite, amphibolite, and epidote ?? garnet blueschist tectonic blocks and related rocks from melanges of two subduction complexes. The samples are from six localities of the Franciscan Complex, California, and related terranes of Oregon and Baja California, and from the Samana Metamorphic Complex, Samana Peninsula, Dominican Republic. Most Franciscan blocks are MORB-like in their contents of rare earth elements (REE) and high field strength elements (HFSE); in contrast, most Samana blocks show an LAB signature of these elements. The whole-rock K2O contents of both groups range from 1 to 3 wt %; K, Ba, Rb, and Cs are all strongly intercorrelated. Many blocks display K/Ba similar to melasomatized transition zones and rinds at their outer margins. Some transition zones and rinds are enriched in LILE compared with host blocks; others are relatively depleted in these elements. Some LILE-rich blocks contain 'early' coarse-grained muscovite that is aligned in the foliation defined by coarse-grained omphacite or amphibole grains. Others display 'late' muscovite in veins and as a partial replacement of garnet; many contain both textural types. The muscovite is phengite that contains ???3??25-3??55 Si per 11 oxygens, and ???0??25-0??50 Mgper 11 oxygens. Lower-Si phengite has a significant paragonite component: Na per 11 oxygens ranges to ???0??12. Ba contents of phengite range to over 1 wt % (0??027 per 11 oxygens). Ba in phengite does not covary strongly with either Na or K. Ba contents of phengite increase from some blocks to their transition zones or rinds, or from blocks to their veins. Averaged KlBa ratios for phengite and host samples define an array which describes other subsamples of the block and other analyzed blocks. Phengite carries essentially all of the LILE in otherwise mafic eclogite, amphibolite, and garnet blueschist blocks that are enriched in these elements compared with MORE. It evidently tracks a distinctive type of LILE metasomatism that attends both high-T and retrograde subduction zone metamorphism. An obvious source for the LILE is a fluid in equilibrium with metasedimentary rocks. High-grade semipelitic schists from subduction complexes and subductable sediment display LILE values that resemble those seen in the most LILE-rich blocks. Modeling of Ba and Ti suggests that 1-40 wt % of phengite added to MORB can produce their observed LILE enrichment. Thus, the release of LILE from such rocks to fluids or melts in very high-T and -P parts of subduction zones probably depends critically on the stability and solubility relations of phengite, which is thought to be stable at pressures as high as 95-110 kbar at T= 750-1050??C.

  15. U/Pb detrital zircon provenance from late cretaceous metamorphic units of the Guajira Peninsula, Colombia: Tectonic implications on the collision between the Caribbean arc and the South American margin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weber, M.; Cardona, A.; Valencia, V.; García-Casco, A.; Tobón, M.; Zapata, S.

    2010-10-01

    Mesozoic metamorphic units exposed along the northern margin of the South American plate record the different stages of subduction evolution or arc-continent collision between the margins of the Caribbean plate and the South American continent. U-Pb detrital zircon geochronology for provenance analysis was carried out on meta-sedimentary rocks of the Etpana formation and metamorphic boulders found within a nearby Tertiary conglomerate, including high-pressure rocks in the Colombian Caribbean. All samples have similar age populations, suggesting that they share a relatively common source and paleogeography. Prominent age peaks include Meso and Paleoproterozoic ages of ca. 1624 Ma and 1315 Ma, Cambrian to Neoproterozoic ages of ca. 630 Ma, 580 Ma and 547 Ma, and less abundant Jurassic and Permian ages of ca. 270 Ma and 160 Ma, which indicate that the South American margin is a major source for the sedimentary protoliths. There are also remnants of younger Cretaceous allocthonous Caribbean arc input at ca. 90-70 Ma. The deposition and metamorphism of these units records the ongoing Late Cretaceous continental subduction of the South American margin within the Caribbean intra-oceanic arc-subduction zone. This gave way to an arc-continent collision between the Caribbean and the South American plates, and sediments with continental signatures were incorporated into the subduction channel and the accretionary wedge. As convergence continued, sediments derived from a mix of South American and arc sources were deposited and included in the collisional wedge up until <71 Ma.

  16. Slip stability regimes in illite-rich fault gouge in subduction zone megathrusts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Den Hartog, S. A.; Spiers, C. J.

    2011-12-01

    To understand the depth distribution of seismicity and to reliably model earthquake nucleation within subduction zone megathrusts, data on the frictional properties of realistic, i.e. illite- and/or muscovite-rich, subduction zone fault gouges sheared under in-situ megathrust conditions are required. We performed rotary shear friction experiments on illite-rich gouge derived from Rochester Shale under conditions relevant to rupture nucleation in a subduction zone megathrust, i.e. at effective normal stresses of 50-170 MPa, a pore fluid pressure of 100 MPa, temperatures of 150-600°C and sliding velocities ranging from 1 to 100 ?m/s. Results obtained at an effective normal stress of 170 MPa show three frictional stability regimes depending on temperature. At a low temperature (150-250°C; Regime 1) slip is characterised by a coefficient of friction of ~0.6, roughly constant strain hardening rates and velocity strengthening behaviour, whereby (a-b) values decrease with increasing temperature. The experiments at the highest temperatures investigated (450-500°C; Regime 3) show a coefficient of friction of ~0.8 and strain hardening rates that increase strongly at shear strains >35. Slip in this regime is also velocity strengthening, but with (a-b) values that increase with increasing temperature. At intermediate temperatures (250-450°C; Regime 2) a sharp transition occurs in frictional behaviour. In this temperature range, the coefficient of friction increases from ~0.6 to ~0.8 and the strain hardening rate switches from constant to showing a sharp increase at high strains. In addition, Regime 2 shows velocity weakening behaviour, accentuated by temperature- and velocity-dependent stick-slip events. The three frictional regimes are also reflected in the microstructures of the deformed samples, which show a decrease in the quartz grain size in Regimes 2 and 3 compared with Regime 1, and a decrease in porosity in Regime 3 compared with Regimes 1 and 2. At an effective normal stress of 50 MPa, Regimes 2 and 3 shift to higher temperatures, with Regime 2, the velocity weakening regime, occurring at approximately 350-600°C. Regime 2, observed at 170 MPa, broadly corresponds with the temperature range believed to apply to the seismogenic zone in subduction megathrusts. In addition, the shift of this regime of potentially unstable slip to higher temperatures at lower effective normal stress offers a possible explanation for the predominance of slow slip events just downdip of the seismogenic zone.

  17. Marine electromagnetics: A new tool for mapping fluids at subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Key, K.; Naif, S.; Constable, S.; Evans, R. L.

    2013-12-01

    The recent adoption of marine electromagnetic (EM) methods by the hydrocarbon exploration industry has driven technological innovations in acquisition hardware and modeling software that have created new opportunities for studying plate boundary structure at subduction zones. Because the bulk electrical resistivity measured by EM surveys is strongly dependent on crustal porosity and hence fluid content, EM data can provide valuable constraints on crustal hydration in the incoming oceanic plate, fluids released through sediment compaction and dehydration reactions occurring after the plate is subducted, and fluids escaping through the overlying forearc crust. Since water also plays an important role in regulating subduction earthquake processes and frictional behavior along the plate boundary, EM data have the potential to reveal new insights on the causes of large subduction zone earthquakes and their potential for generating tsunamis. As a demonstration of this novel technique, we present new results from the first controlled-source EM survey of a subduction zone, carried out at the Middle America Trench offshore Nicaragua in 2010. During this survey 50 seafloor EM receivers were deployed along a 280 km profile extending from the abyssal plain, across the trench and onto the forearc. Controlled-source EM signals were broadcast to the receivers by deep-towing a low-frequency electric dipole transmitter close to the seafloor along the entire survey profile, generating diffusive EM waves that traveled through the crust and uppermost mantle. Non-linear two-dimensional inversion of the data reveals a significant decrease in crustal resistivity with the onset of bending faults at the trench outer rise and images a continuous zone of low resistivity porous sediments being carried down with the subducting plate to at least 10 km down dip from the trench. Further landward at about 25 km from the trench, a sub-vertical low-resistivity zone extending from the plate boundary into the overlying forearc crust is consistent with the fluid release expected from the smectite-illite transformation and occurs directly beneath the location of known seafloor fluid seeps. Potential future surveys at other margins such as Cascadia, Alaska, New Zealand and Japan and integrated interpretation with other geophysical, geochemical and geological studies offers the chance for greatly enhancing our understanding of subduction processes.

  18. Subduction zone Hf-anomalies: Mantle messenger, melting artefact or crustal process?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Woodhead, Jon; Hergt, Janet; Greig, Alan; Edwards, Louise

    2011-04-01

    The origin of Hf elemental depletions in subduction zone magmas is investigated using new major- and trace-element data for cumulate xenoliths from the Mariana arc, and deep sea sediments recovered by the DSDP and ODP drilling programmes. Results indicate that most of the rare earth element (REE) and Hf inventory in the xenoliths is contained within two minerals—clinopyroxene and titanomagnetite—and that removal of a typical gabbroic fractionating assemblage reduces the depletion in Hf relative to neighbouring REE on a mantle normalised trace element diagram (commonly denoted Hf/Hf*) in the evolving magmas. Confirmation of this observation is provided by a variety of literature data from different subduction zones in which bulk-rock samples also define a positive correlation between Hf/Hf* and the silica content of the magmas. In agreement with experimental studies on REE-HFSE partitioning, we observe that the ability of clinopyroxene to influence the Hf/Hf* of fractionating magmas is associated with its aluminium content. This decoupling of Hf from the REE in differentiating arc magmas suggests that bulk rock Hf/Hf* values, when used in isolation, are unlikely to provide a robust measure of source REE-Hf characteristics, even when suites are filtered to exclude all but the most mafic samples. It may be possible to normalise data to a constant degree of fractionation, and in this way distinguish subtle changes in source Hf/Hf* but most existing datasets are of neither the size nor quality to attempt such calculations. Modification of Hf/Hf* is also seen when modelling mantle melting processes and there are strong suggestions that source variations are influenced by not only subducted sediment, which exhibits a remarkably wide range in Hf/Hf*, but also subduction zone fluids. These observations remove some of the constraints imposed on recent models that attempt to reconcile Hf isotope data with Hf-REE abundance data in some arc suites. Although a case may be made for the involvement of residual, minor, phases in the downgoing slab, fluid and sediment addition, and the role of major phases during partial melting, in particular clinopyroxene, in the mantle wedge can also exert a strong influence on Hf-REE relationships.

  19. Seismological investigations of the subduction zone plate interface: New advances and challenges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rietbrock, Andreas; Garth, Tom; Hicks, Stephen

    2015-04-01

    In the last decade, huge advances have been made in analysing the slip distribution of large megathrust earthquakes and how slip relates to geodetic locking, shedding light on the character of the seismic cycle in subduction zones. Recently, a number of studies have suggested that at convergent plate boundaries, geodetic locking may be closely related to slip distribution of subsequent large earthquakes, as found recently for the Maule 2010 and Tohoku 2011 earthquakes. However, the physical (e.g. seismic) properties along the subduction zone interface are still poorly constrained, posing a major limitation to our physical understanding of both geodetic locking and earthquake rupture process. Here, we present high-resolution seismic tomography results (P- and S-wave velocity), as well as earthquake locations to make a detailed investigation of seismic properties along the portion of the plate interface that ruptured during the 2010 Maule earthquake. Additionally, to test the robustness of our models, we performed numerous numerical tests including changes to the parameterization, synthetic recovery tests and bootstrap analysis. We find P-wave velocities of about 5.7 km/s at 10 km depth and linearly increasing to 7.5 km/s at a depth of 30 km. Between 30 km and 43 km, P-wave velocities are relatively constant at around 7.5 km/s before a subsequent increase to 8.3 km/s at larger depths (>60 km) is observed. The Poisson's ratio is significantly elevated, at values of up to 0.35 at shallow depths of 10km to 15km, before reaching less elevated values of 0.28-0.29 in the depth range between 20km and 43km. Comparison of these velocities to petrological models shows good agreement below 30 - 50 km depth. At shallower depths though P-wave velocities are significantly lower, which together with the elevated poisons ratio indicates that this portion of the mega thrust is highly hydrated, suggesting that material properties may in part control the seismogenic character of subduction megathrusts Comparison of our findings to other regional tomographic models from other subduction zones worldwide (Japan, Sumatra) shows excellent agreements with our results.

  20. PTt path in metamorphic rocks of the Khoy region (northwest Iran) and their tectonic significance for Cretaceous Tertiary continental collision

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Azizi, H.; Moinevaziri, H.; Mohajjel, M.; Yagobpoor, A.

    2006-06-01

    Metamorphic rocks in the Khoy region are exposed between obducted ophiolites to the southwest and sedimentary rocks of Precambrian-Paleozoic age to the northeast. The Qom formation (Oligocene-Miocene) with a basal conglomerate transgressively overlies all of these rocks. The metamorphic rocks consist of both metasediments and metabasites. The metasediments are micaschist, garnet-staurolite schist and garnet-staurolite sillimanite schist with some meta-arkose, marble and quartzite. The metabasites are metamorphosed to greenschist and amphibolite facies from a basaltic and gabbroic protolith of tholeiitic and calc-alkaline rocks. Geothermobarometry based on the equivalence of minerals stability and their paragenesis in these rocks and microprobe analyses by several different methods indicate that metamorphism occurred in a temperature range between 450 and 680 °C at 5.5 and 7.5 kb pressure. Rims of minerals reveal a considerable decrease of pressure (<2 kb) and insignificant decrease of temperature. The PTt path of this metamorphism is normal. The MFG line passes above the triple junction of Al 2SiO 5 polymorphs, and the average geothermal gradient during metamorphism was from 27 to 37 °C/km, which is more concordant with the temperature regime of collision zones. We infer that crustal thickening during post-Cretaceous (possibly Eocene) collision of the Arabian plate and the Azerbaijan-Albourz block was the main factor that caused the metamorphism in the studied area.

  1. Forearc Basin Structure in the Andaman-Nicobar Segment of the Sumatra-Andaman Subduction Zone: Insight from High-Resolution Seismic Reflection Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moeremans, R. E.; Singh, S. C.

    2014-12-01

    The Andaman-Nicobar subduction is the northernmost segment of the Sumatra-Andaman subduction zone and marks the western boundary of the Andaman Sea, which is a complex backarc extensional basin. We present the interpretation of a new set of deep seismic reflection data acquired across the Andaman-Nicobar forearc basin, from 8°N to 11°N, to understand the structure and evolution of the forearc basin, focusing on how the obliquity of convergence affects deformation in the forearc, as well as on the Diligent (DF) and Eastern Margin Faults (EMF). Constraining the evolution of this basin, which is strongly related to the collision of India and Eurasia, can help shed light onto present-day deformation processes along this segment of the subduction zone, where convergence is highly oblique and little data is available. We find that he DF is a backthrust and corresponds to the Mentawai (MFZ) and West Andaman Fault (WAF) systems further south, offshore Sumatra. The DF is expressed as a series of mostly landward verging folds and faults, deforming the early to late Miocene sediments. The DF seems to root from the boundary between the accretionary complex and the continental backstop, where it meets the EMF. The EMF marks the western boundary of the forearc basin; it is associated with subsidence and is expressed as a deep piggyback basin, associated with recent Pliocene to Pleistocene subsidence at the western edge of the forearc basin. The eastern edge of the forearc basin is marked by the Invisible Bank (IB), which is thought to be tilted and uplifted continental crustal block. Subsidence along the EMF and uplift and tilting of the IB seem to be related to different opening phases in the Andaman Sea. The sliver Andaman-Nicobar Fault (ANF), which is the active northward extension of the Great Sumatra sliver Fault (GSF), lies to the east of the IB, and marks the boundary between continental crust underlying the forearc basin and crust accreted at the Andaman Sea Spreading Center.

  2. In situ Raman spectroscopic investigation of the structure of subduction-zone fluids

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mibe, Kenji; Chou, I.-Ming; Bassett, William A.

    2008-01-01

    In situ Raman spectra of synthetic subduction-zone fluids (KAlSi3O8-H2O system) were measured to 900?? and 2.3 GPa using a hydrothermal diamond-anvil cell. The structures of aqueous fluid and hydrous melt become closer when conditions approach the second critical endpoint. Almost no three-dimensional network was observed in the supercritical fluid above 2 GPa although a large amount of silicate component is dissolved, suggesting that the physical and chemical properties of these phases change drastically at around the second critical endpoint. Our experimental results indicate that the fluids released from a subducting slab change from aqueous fluid to supercritical fluid with increasing depth under the volcanic arcs. Copyright 2008 by the American Geophysical Union.

  3. Hot 'nough for ya?: Controls and Constraints on modeling flux melting in subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spiegelman, M.; Wilson, C. R.; van Keken, P.; Kelemen, P. B.; Hacker, B. R.

    2012-12-01

    The qualitative concept of flux-melting in subduction zones is well established. Progressive dehydration reactions in the down-going slab release fluids to the hot overlying mantle wedge, causing flux melting and the migration of melts to the volcanic front. However, the quantitative details of fluid release, migration, melt generation and transport in the wedge remain poorly understood. In particular, there are two fundamental observations that defy quantitative modeling. The first is the location of the volcanic front with respect to intermediate depth earthquake (e.g. ˜ 100±40 km; England et al., 2004, Syracuse and Abers, 2006) which is remarkably robust yet insensitive to subduction parameters. This is particularly surprising given new estimates on the variability of fluid release in global subduction zones (e.g. van Keken et al. 2011) which show great sensitivity of fluid release to slab thermal conditions. Reconciling these results implies some robust mechanism for focusing fluids/melts toward the wedge corner. The second observation is the global existence of thermally hot erupted basalts and andesites that, if derived from flux melting of the mantle requires sub-arc mantle temperatures of ˜ 1300° C over shallow pressures of 1-2 GPa which are not that different from mid-ocean ridge conditions. These thermodynamic constraints are also implicit in recent parameterizations of wet melting (e.g. Kelley et al, 2010) which tend to produce significant amounts of melt only near the dry solidus. These observations impose significant challenges for geodynamic models of subduction zones, and in particular for those that don't include the explicit transport of fluids and melts. We present new high-resolution model results that suggest that a more complete description of coupled fluid/solid mechanics (allowing the fluid to interact with solid rheological variations) together with rheologically consistent solutions for temperature and solid flow, may provide the required ingredients that allow for robust focusing of both fluids and hot solids to the sub-arc regions. We demonstrate coupled fluid/solid flow models for simplified geometries to understand the basic processes, as well as for more geologically relevant models from a range of observed arc geometries. We will also evaluate the efficacy of current wet melting parameterizations in these models. All of these models have been built using new modeling software we have been developing that allows unprecedented flexibility in the composition and solution of coupled multi-physics problems. Dubbed TerraFERMA (the transparent Finite Element Rapid Model Assembler...no relation to the convection code TERRA), this new software leverages several advanced computational libraries (FEniCS/PETSc/Spud) to make it significantly easier to construct and explore a wide range of models of varying complexity. Subduction zones provide an ideal application area for understanding the role of different degrees of coupling of fluid and solid dynamics and their relation to observations.

  4. Long-term perspectives on giant earthquakes and tsunamis at subduction zones

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Satake, K.; Atwater, B.F.

    2007-01-01

    Histories of earthquakes and tsunamis, inferred from geological evidence, aid in anticipating future catastrophes. This natural warning system now influences building codes and tsunami planning in the United States, Canada, and Japan, particularly where geology demonstrates the past occurrence of earthquakes and tsunamis larger than those known from written and instrumental records. Under favorable circumstances, paleoseismology can thus provide long-term advisories of unusually large tsunamis. The extraordinary Indian Ocean tsunami of 2004 resulted from a fault rupture more than 1000 km in length that included and dwarfed fault patches that had broken historically during lesser shocks. Such variation in rupture mode, known from written history at a few subduction zones, is also characteristic of earthquake histories inferred from geology on the Pacific Rim. Copyright ?? 2007 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.

  5. Nonextensivity at the Circum-Pacific subduction zones-Preliminary studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scherrer, T. M.; França, G. S.; Silva, R.; de Freitas, D. B.; Vilar, C. S.

    2015-05-01

    Following the fragment-asperity interaction model introduced by Sotolongo-Costa and Posadas (2004) and revised by Silva et al. (2006), we try to explain the nonextensive effect in the context of the asperity model designed by Lay and Kanamori (1981). To address this issue, we used data from the NEIC catalog in the decade between 2001 and 2010, in order to investigate the so-called Circum-Pacific subduction zones. We propose a geophysical explanation to nonextensive parameter q. The results need further investigation however evidence of correlation between the nonextensive parameter and the asperity model is shown, i.e., we show that q-value is higher for areas with larger asperities and stronger coupling.

  6. The energy release in earthquakes, and subduction zone seismicity and stress in slabs. Ph.D. Thesis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vassiliou, M. S.

    1983-01-01

    Energy release in earthquakes is discussed. Dynamic energy from source time function, a simplified procedure for modeling deep focus events, static energy estimates, near source energy studies, and energy and magnitude are addressed. Subduction zone seismicity and stress in slabs are also discussed.

  7. Comparison of gravity anomaly between mature and immature intra-oceanic subduction zones in the western Pacific

    E-print Network

    Comparison of gravity anomaly between mature and immature intra-oceanic subduction zones. In the isostatic residual gravity anomaly map, the width of non- isostatically-compensated region of the mature attraction due to seafloor is removed, a large difference exists between the mature and immature subduction

  8. Magnitude Limits of Subduction Zone Earthquakes by Yufang Rong, David D. Jackson, Harold Magistrale, and Chris Goldfinger

    E-print Network

    Goldfinger, Chris

    Magnitude Limits of Subduction Zone Earthquakes by Yufang Rong, David D. Jackson, Harold Magistrale, and Chris Goldfinger Abstract Maximum earthquake magnitude (mx) is a critical parameter in seismic hazard. In this study, we use probable maximum earthquake magnitude within a time period of interest, mpT, to replace mx

  9. Plate kinematics, slab shape and back-arc stress: A comparison between laboratory models and current subduction zones

    E-print Network

    Demouchy, Sylvie

    5, France b Dip. Scienze Geologiche, Università degli Studi « Roma TRE », Largo S.Leonardo Murialdo­6]. However, a recent global study which considered all present-day oceanic subduction zones has shown of the overriding plate (V Y OP) [8,9]. Trench Earth and Planetary Science Letters 256 (2007) 473­483 www

  10. On the relationships between slab dip, back-arc stress, upper plate absolute motion, and crustal nature in subduction zones

    E-print Network

    Demouchy, Sylvie

    ; subduction dynamics. Index Terms: 3040 Marine Geology and Geophysics: Plate tectonics (8150, 8155, 8157, 8158On the relationships between slab dip, back-arc stress, upper plate absolute motion, and crustal] Statistical analysis of modern oceanic subduction zone parameters, such as the age of a downgoing plate

  11. Thermal modeling of the southern Alaska subduction zone: Insight into the petrology of the subducting slab and overlying mantle wedge

    SciTech Connect

    Ponko, S.C.; Peacock, S.M.

    1995-11-10

    This report discusses a two-dimensional thermal model of the southern Alaska subduction zone. This model allows specfic predictions to be made about the pressure-temperature conditions and mineralogy of the subducting oceanic crust and the mantle wedge and assess different petrologic models for the generation of Alaskan arc magmas.

  12. B-type olivine fabric in the mantle wedge: Insights from high-resolution non-Newtonian subduction zone models

    E-print Network

    van Keken, Peter

    B-type olivine fabric in the mantle wedge: Insights from high-resolution non-Newtonian subduction of subduction zones. These include 3-D flow effects, parallel melt filled cracks, and B-type olivine fabric. We predict the distribution of B- type and other fabrics with high-resolution thermal and stress models

  13. Plasticity of the dense hydrous magnesium silicate phase A at subduction zones conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gouriet, K.; Hilairet, N.; Amiguet, E.; Bolfan-Casanova, N.; Wang, Y.; Reynard, B.; Cordier, P.

    2015-11-01

    The plasticity of the dense hydrous magnesium silicate (DHMS) phase A, a key hydrous mineral within cold subduction zones, was investigated by two complementary approaches: high-pressure deformation experiments and computational methods. The deformation experiments were carried out at 11 GPa, 400 and 580 °C, with in situ measurements of stress, strain and lattice preferred orientations (LPO). Based on viscoplastic self-consistent modeling (VPSC) of the observed LPO, the deformation mechanisms at 580 °C are consistent with glide on the (0 0 0 1) basal and (0 1 1 bar 0) prismatic planes. At 400 °C the deformation mechanisms involve glide on (2 bar 1 1 0) prismatic, (0 0 0 1) basal and { 1 1 2 bar 1 } pyramidal planes. Both give flow stresses of 2.5-3 GPa at strain rates of 2-4 × 10-5 s-1. We use the Peierls-Nabarro-Galerkin (PNG) approach, relying on first-principles calculations of generalized stacking fault (?-surface), and model the core structure of potential dislocations in basal and prismatic planes. The computations show multiple dissociations of the 1/3 [ 2 1 bar 1 bar 0 ] and [ 0 1 1 bar 0 ] dislocations ( and dislocations) in the basal plane, which is compatible with the ubiquity of basal slip in the experiments. The ?-surface calculations also suggest 1/3 [ 2 1 bar 1 bar 3 ] and [ 0 1 bar 1 1 ] dislocations ( or directions) in prismatic and pyramidal planes, which is also consistent with the experimental data. Phase A has a higher flow strength than olivine. When forming at depths from the dehydration of weak and highly anisotropic hydrated ultramafic rocks, phase A may not maintain the mechanical softening antigorite can provide. The seismic properties calculated for moderately deformed aggregates suggest that S-wave seismic anisotropy of phase A-bearing rocks is lower than hydrous subduction zone lithologies such as serpentinites and blueschists.

  14. Dehydration kinetics of talc and 10 Å phase: Consequences for subduction zone seismicity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chollet, Mélanie; Daniel, Isabelle; Koga, Kenneth T.; Petitgirard, Sylvain; Morard, Guillaume

    2009-06-01

    The process of dehydration embrittlement is usually proposed as an explanation for the presence of intermediate-depth earthquakes in subduction zones. It assumes that the release of water by hydrous mineral breakdown is fast enough to provoke brittle failure. We performed high-pressure, high-temperature, dehydration experiments of talc and 10 Å phase coupled with in situ measurement of reaction kinetics using synchrotron X-ray diffraction. Newly developed, X-ray transparent, pressure-sealed, titanium capsule ensured a closed thermochemical environment. From isothermal kinetics data fitted to the Avrami's equation and from the texture of reaction products, we conclude that dehydration rates of these minerals are limited by diffusion. Predicted minimum rates of fluid release range from 10 - 4 to 9 × 10 - 6 m 3fluid m - 3 rock s - 1 , and are fast enough to provoke hydraulic rupture since Maxwell relaxation rate of rocks relevant of subduction zones are slower than the rate of fluid release. These rates are comparable between talc, 10 Å phase and antigorite also [Perrillat, J.-P., Daniel, I., Koga, K.T., Reynard, B., Cardon, H., Crichton, W.A., 2005. Kinetics of antigorite dehydration: a real-time X-ray diffraction study. Earth Planet. Sci. Lett. 236, 899-913]. Consequently, we suggest that the dehydration of hydrous minerals may eventually be fast enough to trigger the intermediate-depth earthquakes, and that the deepest among intermediate-depth earthquakes may actually locate the limits for dehydration of hydrous minerals in the downgoing lithosphere.

  15. Deformation Mechanisms of Antigorite Serpentinite at Subduction Zone Conditions Determined from Experimentally and Naturally Deformed Rocks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Auzende, A. L.; Escartin, J.; Walte, N.; Guillot, S.; Hirth, G.; Frost, D. J.

    2014-12-01

    The rheology of serpentinite, and particularly that of antigorite-bearing rocks, is of prime importance for understanding subduction zone proceses, including decoupling between the downwelling slab and the overriding plate, exhumation of high-pressure rocks, fluids pathways and, more generally, mantle wedge dynamics. We present results from deformation-DIA experiments on antigorite serpentinite performed under conditions relevant of subduction zones (1-3.5 GPa ; 400-650°C). We complemented our study with a sample deformed in a Griggs-type apparatus at 1 GPa and 400°C (Chernak and Hirth, EPSL, 2010), and with natural samples from Cuba and the Alps deformed under blueschist/eclogitic conditions. Our observations on experimental samples of antigorite deformed within its stability field show that deformation is dominated by cataclastic flow; we can only document a minor contribution of plastic deformation. In naturally deformed samples, deformation-related plastic structures largely dominate strain accommodation, but we also document a minor contribution of brittle deformation. When dehydration occurs in experiments, plasticity increases, and is coupled to local embrittlement attributed to hydraulic fracturating due to the migration of dehydration fluids. Our results thus show that semibrittle deformation operates within and above the stability field of antigorite. We also document that the corrugated structure of antigorite has a control on the strain accommodation mechanisms under subduction conditions, with preferred inter and intra-cracking along (001) and gliding along both a and b. Deformation dominated by brittle processes, as observed in experiments, may occur during deformation at elevated (seismic?) strain rates, while plastic deformation, as observed in naturally deformed rocks, may correspond instead to low strain rates instead (aseismic creep?). We also discuss the role of antigorite rheology and mode of deformation on fluid transport.

  16. Dislocation model of strain accumulation and release at a subduction zone

    SciTech Connect

    Savage, J.C.

    1983-06-10

    Strain accumulation and release at a subduction zone are attributed to stick slip on the main thrust zone and steady aseismic slip on the remainder of the plate interface. This process can be described as a superposition of steady state subduction and a repetitive cycle of slip on the main thrust zone, consisting of steady normal slip at the plate convergence rate plus occasional thrust events that recover the accumulated normal slip. Because steady state subduction does not contribute to the deformation at the free surface, deformation observed there is completely equivalent to that produced by the slip cycle alone. The response to that slip is simply the response of a particular earth model to embedded dislocations. For a purely elastic earth model, the deformation cycle consists of a coseismic offset followed by a linear-in-time recovery to the initial value during the interval between earthquakes. For an elastic-viscoelastic earth model (elastic lithosphere over a viscoelastic asthenosphere), the postearthquake recovery is not linear in time. Records of local uplift as a function of time indicate that the long-term postseimic recovery is approximately linear, suggesting that elastic earth models are adequate to describe the deformation cycle. However, the deformation predicted for a simple elastic half-space earth does not reproduce the deformation observed along the subduction zones in Japna at all well if stick slip is restricted to the main thrust zone. As recognized earlier by Shimazaki, Seno, and Kato, the uplift profiles could be explained if stick slips were postulated to extend along the plate interface beyond the main thrust zone to a depth of perhaps 100 km, but independent evidence suggests that stick slip at such depths if unlikely.

  17. Helium solubility in mica and mechanisms for deep transport of noble gases in subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jackson, C.; Parman, S. W.; Kelley, S. P.; Cooper, R. F.

    2012-12-01

    We have experimentally determined helium solubility in mica to explore possible transport mechanisms of noble gases in subduction zones. Helium solubility in single crystals of muscovite and F-phlogopite investigated is relatively high, ~1 [He]/PHe (ppm/kbar). This solubility is approximately two orders of magnitude greater than values recently measured for olivine [1], and similar to values recently measured for amphibole with a low density of unoccupied ring sites [2]. Helium was dissolved into the micas by subjecting them to a high pressure noble gas atmosphere (1.26-1.48 He-Ne-Ar kbar) at moderate temperatures (450-700 C), allowing the micas to diffusively equilibrate with the imposed helium fugacity. Diffusion of Ne and Ar is too slow in both micas at the explored conditions to quantify their solubility. Experiments were conducted using a TZM gas pressure medium apparatus (Brown University). Analysis was completed by noble gas LA-MS (Open University, UK). Muscovite (dioctehedral) and F-phlogopite (trioctehedral) represent the two basic structural groups of micas, suggesting micas stabilized at higher pressures and temperatures, such as phengite, can provide a relatively deep transport mechanism for noble gases delivered to subduction zones. Thus, phengite may play a role in explaining atmospheric signatures in mantle derived noble gases [e.g.3,4]. 1. Heber, V. S., Brooker, R. A., Kelley, S. P. & Wood, B. J., GCA, 71, 1041-1061 2. Jackson C.R.M, Kelley S.P., Parman S.W., Cooper R.F., Goldschmidt 2012 Abstract 3. Holland, G. & Ballentine, C. J., Nature 441, 186-191 4. Mukhopadhyay, S.. Nature 486, 101-104

  18. Deformation mechanisms of antigorite serpentinite at subduction zone conditions determined from experimentally and naturally deformed rocks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Auzende, Anne-Line; Escartin, Javier; Walte, Nicolas P.; Guillot, Stéphane; Hirth, Greg; Frost, Daniel J.

    2015-02-01

    We performed deformation-DIA experiments on antigorite serpentinite at pressures of 1-3.5 GPa and temperatures of between 400 and 650 °C, bracketing the stability of antigorite under subduction zone conditions. For each set of pressure-temperature (P-T) conditions, we conducted two runs at strain rates of 5 ×10-5 and 1 ×10-4 s-1. We complemented our study with a sample deformed in a Griggs-type apparatus at 1 GPa and 400 °C (Chernak and Hirth, 2010), and with natural samples from Cuba and the Alps deformed under blueschist/eclogitic conditions. Optical and transmission electron microscopies were used for microstructural characterization and determination of deformation mechanisms. Our observations on experimentally deformed antigorite prior to breakdown show that deformation is dominated by cataclastic flow with observable but minor contribution of plastic deformation (microkinking and (001) gliding mainly expressed by stacking disorder mainly). In contrast, in naturally deformed samples, plastic deformation structures are dominant (stacking disorder, kinking, pressure solution), with minor but also perceptible contribution of brittle deformation. When dehydration occurs in experiments, plasticity increases and is coupled to local embrittlement that we attribute to antigorite dehydration. In dehydrating samples collected in the Alps, embrittlement is also observed suggesting that dehydration may contribute to intermediate-depth seismicity. Our results thus show that semibrittle deformation operates within and above the stability field of antigorite. However, the plastic deformation recorded by naturally deformed samples was likely acquired at low strain rates. We also document that the corrugated structure of antigorite controls the strain accommodation mechanisms under subduction conditions, with preferred inter- and intra-grain cracking along (001) and gliding along both a and b. We also show that antigorite rheology in subduction zones is partly controlled by the presence of fluids, which can percolate within the exhumation channel via deformation-induced interconnected porosity.

  19. Evaluation of strain accumulation in global subduction zones from seismicity data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ikuta, Ryoya; Mitsui, Yuta; Kurokawa, Yuri; Ando, Masataka

    2015-12-01

    We compared the cumulative seismic slip of interplate earthquakes (?M5.5) with relative plate motion at subduction zones. By assuming that each interplate earthquake occurred on a stick-slip patch, we used the slip history of each patch to calculate the interplate slip in the surrounding area. We considered that areas in which interplate earthquakes occurred but that had small cumulative slips compared with relative plate motion were accumulating strain, and we calculated the size of these areas. We first used this method to test the rupture areas of six M9-class interplate earthquakes that have occurred during the past 100 years. The cumulative seismic slip preceding and following the six earthquakes was smaller than the relative plate motion in the rupture areas of the earthquakes. We interpret the areas of slip-deficient stick-slip patches to be the rupture areas of future huge earthquakes. We applied the same procedure to global subduction zones and found that slip-deficient stick-slip patches with large spatial extents (equivalent to the rupture area of M9-class earthquakes) occur in an additional 25 locations. Considering that six M9-class earthquakes have occurred in the past 110 years and that the recurrence interval in each case is probably between a few hundred and a thousand years, it is not surprising that 25 regions globally are capable of producing M9-class earthquakes. These regions may be the most likely candidates for the rupture areas of future M9-class interplate earthquakes.

  20. Paleoseismic Records of Multiple Great Earthquakes from the Subduction Zones of Sumatra, Chile, and Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dura, T.; Horton, B.; Briggs, R. W.; Cisternas, M.; Ely, L. L.; Kelsey, H. M.; Nelson, A. R.; Rubin, C. M.

    2014-12-01

    Instrumental and historical records have proved too short to estimate the potential magnitudes and recurrence intervals of rare events such as the 2004 Indian Ocean and 2011 Tohoku-Oki great earthquakes and tsunamis. Paleoseismology improves our understanding of subduction zone hazards by extending earthquake histories thousands of years into the past. Through paleoseismic investigations at subduction zones, we scrutinize coastal sediments in low-energy depositional environments to reconstruct relative sea-level (RSL) changes related to upper-plate deformation from past earthquakes and tsunami inundation. Microfossils—long recognized as valuable RSL indicators—in coastal sediment provide an independent test of earthquake related RSL change and tsunami deposition inferred from coastal stratigraphy. Here, we illustrate the value and potential of paleoseismic methods at megathrust sites in Sumatra, Chile, and the eastern Aleutian Islands to identify both coseismic subsidence and uplift. In western Sumatra, coastal sediments beneath a lowland near the city of Padang contain stratigraphic evidence for two mid Holocene earthquakes, each resulting in > 1 m of coseismic subsidence. A site along the most populated portion of the central Chilean coast near Valparaíso records stratigraphic and diatom evidence of six instances of early to mid-Holocene coseismic uplift (< 1 m) accompanied by tsunamis. Coastal marsh sediment on the eastern Aleutian Island of Sitkinak contains stratigraphic and diatom evidence for three instances of uplift and two of subsidence during great earthquakes. Such biostratigraphic evidence of past great earthquakes and tsunamis shows that the absence of great megathrust events near our sites in the last 200-300 years is not representative of the potential for great events on the megathrusts. In addition, we discuss how our earthquake and tsunami records fit within the context of past regional RSL histories and emphasize the importance of RSL on the preservation and interpretation of evidence of past events.

  1. Seismic structure beneath the Rivera subduction zone from finite-frequency seismic tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Ting; Grand, Stephen P.; Wilson, David; Guzman-Speziale, Marco; Gomez-Gonzalez, Juan Martin; Dominguez-Reyes, Tonatiuh; Ni, James

    2009-01-01

    The subduction zone of western Mexico is a unique region on Earth where microplate capture and overriding plate disruption are occurring today. The young, small Rivera plate and the adjacent Cocos plate are subducting beneath the Jalisco block of Mexico. Here, we present a P wave tomographic model of the upper mantle to 400 km depth beneath the Jalisco block and surrounding regions using teleseismic P waves recorded by the Mapping the Rivera Subduction Zone (MARS) and Colima Volcano Deep Seismic Experiment (CODEX) seismic arrays. The inversion used 12,188 P wave residuals and finite-frequency theory to backproject the 3-D traveltime sensitivity kernels through the model. Below a depth of 150 km, the tomography model shows a clear gap between the Rivera and Cocos slabs that increases in size with depth. The gap between the plates lies beneath the northern part of the Colima graben and may be responsible for the location of Colima volcano. The images indicate that the deep Rivera plate is subducting more steeply than does the adjacent Cocos plate and also has a more northerly trajection. At a depth of about 100 km, both the Rivera and Cocos slabs have increased dips such that the slabs are deeper than 200 km beneath the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt (TMVB). It is also found that the Rivera plate is at roughly 140-km depth beneath the young central Jalisco Volcanic lineament. Our images suggest that the Rivera plate and westernmost Cocos plate have recently rolled back toward the trench. This scenario may explain the unusual magmatic activity seen in the TMVB.

  2. Could a Sumatra-like megathrust earthquake occur in the south Ryukyu subduction zone?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Jing-Yi; Sibuet, Jean-Claude; Hsu, Shu-Kun; Wu, Wen-Nan

    2014-12-01

    A comparison of the geological and geophysical environments between the Himalaya-Sumatra and Taiwan-Ryukyu collision-subduction systems revealed close tectonic similarities. Both regions are characterized by strongly oblique convergent processes and dominated by similar tectonic stress regimes. In the two areas, the intersections of the oceanic fracture zones with the subduction systems are characterized by trench-parallel high free-air gravity anomaly features in the fore-arcs and the epicenters of large earthquakes were located at the boundary between the positive and negative gravity anomalies. These event distributions and high-gravity anomalies indicate a strong coupling degree of the intersection area, which was probably induced by a strong resistance of the fracture features during the subduction. Moreover, the seismicity distribution in the Ryukyu area was very similar to the pre-seismic activity pattern of the 2004 Sumatra event. That is, thrust-type earthquakes with a trench-normal P-axis occurred frequently along the oceanward side of the mainshock, whereas only a few thrust earthquakes occurred along the continentward side. Therefore, the aseismic area located west of 128°E in the western Ryukyu subduction zone could have resulted from the strong plate locking effect beneath the high gravity anomaly zone. By analogy with the tectonic environment of the Sumatra subduction zone, the occurrence of a potential Sumatra-like earthquake in the south Ryukyu arc is highly likely and the rupture will mainly propagate continentward to fulfill the region of low seismicity (approximately 125° E to 129° E; 23° N to 26.5° N), which may generate a hazardous tsunami.

  3. 2010 Maule earthquake slip correlates with pre-seismic locking of Andean subduction zone.

    PubMed

    Moreno, Marcos; Rosenau, Matthias; Oncken, Onno

    2010-09-01

    The magnitude-8.8 Maule (Chile) earthquake of 27 February 2010 ruptured a segment of the Andean subduction zone megathrust that has been suspected to be of high seismic potential. It is the largest earthquake to rupture a mature seismic gap in a subduction zone that has been monitored with a dense space-geodetic network before the event. This provides an image of the pre-seismically locked state of the plate interface of unprecedentedly high resolution, allowing for an assessment of the spatial correlation of interseismic locking with coseismic slip. Pre-seismic locking might be used to anticipate future ruptures in many seismic gaps, given the fundamental assumption that locking and slip are similar. This hypothesis, however, could not be tested without the occurrence of the first gap-filling earthquake. Here we show evidence that the 2010 Maule earthquake slip distribution correlates closely with the patchwork of interseismic locking distribution as derived by inversion of global positioning system (GPS) observations during the previous decade. The earthquake nucleated in a region of high locking gradient and released most of the stresses accumulated in the area since the last major event in 1835. Two regions of high seismic slip (asperities) appeared to be nearly fully locked before the earthquake. Between these asperities, the rupture bridged a zone that was creeping interseismically with consistently low coseismic slip. The rupture stopped in areas that were highly locked before the earthquake but where pre-stress had been significantly reduced by overlapping twentieth-century earthquakes. Our work suggests that coseismic slip heterogeneity at the scale of single asperities should indicate the seismic potential of future great earthquakes, which thus might be anticipated by geodetic observations. PMID:20829792

  4. Fault plane orientations of deep earthquakes in the Izu-Bonin-Marianas subduction zone system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Myhill, R.; Warren, L. M.

    2011-12-01

    We present the results of directivity analysis on 45 deep earthquakes within the Izu-Bonin-Marianas subduction zone between 1993 and 2011. The age of the subducting Pacific plate increases from north to south along the trench, from 120 Ma offshore Tokyo to over 150 Ma east of the Mariana Islands. The dip of the deep slab generally increases from north to south, and is steep to overturned beneath the southern Bonin Islands and Marianas. Between 34 and 26 degrees north, a peak in seismicity at 350-450 km depth marks a decrease in dip as the slab approaches the base of the upper mantle. We observe directivity for around 60 percent of the analysed earthquakes, and use the propagation characteristics to find the best fitting rupture vector. In 60-70 percent of cases with well constrained rupture directivity, the best fitting rupture vector allows discrimination of the fault plane and the auxiliary plane of the focal mechanism. The identified fault planes between 100 km and 500 km are predominantly near-horizontal or south-southwest dipping. Rotated into the plane of the slab, the fault plane poles form a single cluster, since the more steeply dipping fault planes are found within more steeply dipping sections of slab. The dominance of near-horizontal fault planes at intermediate depth agrees with results from previous studies of the Tonga and Middle-America subduction zones. However, the presence of a single preferred fault plane orientation for large deep-focus earthquakes has not been previously reported, and contrasts with the situation for deep-focus earthquakes in the Tonga-Kermadec subduction system. Ruptures tend to propagate away from the top surface of the slab. We discuss potential causes of preferred fault plane orientations within subducting slabs in the light of existing available data, and the implications for mechanisms of faulting at great depths within the Earth.

  5. Mid-mantle seismic anisotropy patterns around subduction zones predicted by numerical modelling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Faccenda, Manuele

    2014-05-01

    There is increasing evidence for mid mantle seismic anisotropy around subduction zones whose interpretation remains elusive. In this study I estimate the strain-induced mid mantle fabric and associated seismic anisotropy developing in 3D petrological-thermo-mechanical subduction models where the slab is either stagnating over the 660 km discontinuity or penetrating into the lower mantle. The modeling of synthetic lattice-preferred-orientation (LPO) development of wadsleyite and perovskite has been calibrated with results from deformational experiments and ab-initio atomic scale models, and the single crystal elastic tensor of the different mineral phases is scaled by local P-T conditions. The lower transition zone (ringwoodite + garnet) is assumed to be isotropic. Mid mantle fabric develops in proximity of the subducting slab where deformation and stresses are high, except at depths where upwelling or downwelling material undergoes phase transformations, yielding to LPO reset. The upper transition zone (wadsleyite + garnet) is characterized by weak transverse isotropy (2-3%) with symmetry axes oriented and fast S wave polarized dip-normal. A slightly stronger transverse isotropy develops in the lower mantle (perovskite + periclase), where the symmetry axes, the polarization of the fast S wave and the maximum Vp and dVs are parallel to the slab dip and subduction direction. For stagnating slab models this translates into negative and positive radial anisotropy in the upper transition zone and lower mantle back-arc, respectively, minimum delay times for vertically travelling shear waves and large shear wave splitting for waves propagating horizontally in the lower mantle. These results may help in reconciling the seismic anisotropy patterns observed in some subduction zones with subduction-induced deformation, such as those measured in the mid mantle between the Australian plate and the New Hebrides-Tonga-Kermadec trenches that I interpret as related to stagnating portions of the subducted Pacific plate.

  6. Ultrahigh-pressure metamorphic rocks from the Chinese Continental Scientific Drilling Project: II Oxygen isotope and fluid inclusion distributions through vertical sections

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xiao, Yilin; Zhang, Zeming; Hoefs, Jochen; van den Kerkhof, Alfons

    2006-10-01

    In order to reconstruct the formation and exhumation mechanisms of UHP metamorphic terrains, the Chinese Continental Scientific Drilling Program (CCSD) has been carried out in Donghai of the Dabie-Sulu ultrahigh-pressure (UHP) metamorphic belt, East China. Eclogite, gneiss, amphibolite (retrograded from eclogite), ultramafic rocks, and minor schist and quartzite have been drilled. Aiming to reveal the fluid behaviour in a vertical sequence of an UHP slab, we investigated fluid inclusion and oxygen isotope characteristics of selected drillcores from the main hole and the pilot-holes PP2 and ZK 703 of the CCSD. More than 540 laser-ablation oxygen isotope analyses on garnet, omphacite, quartz, kyanite, amphibole, phengite, rutile, epidote, amphibole, plagioclase, and biotite from various rocks in the depth range of 0-3,000 m (mainly eclogite and gneiss) show that the investigated rocks can be divided into two groups: 18O-depleted rocks (as low as ?18O = -7.4‰ for garnet) indicate interaction with cold climate meteoric waters, whereas 18O-normal rocks (with bulk ?18O > +5.6‰) have preserved the O-isotopic compositions of their protoliths. Meteoric water/rock interaction has reached depths of at least 2,700 m. Oxygen isotope equilibrium has generally been achieved. Isotopic compositions of mineral phases are homogeneous on a mm to cm scale regardless of lithology, but heterogeneous on the scale of a few metres. Oxygen isotope distributions in the vertical sections favour an “in situ” origin of the UHP metamorphic rocks. The very negative ?18O eclogites usually have higher hydroxyl-mineral contents than the normal ?18O rocks, indicating higher water content during UHP metamorphism. Fluid inclusion data suggest that rocks with depleted 18O compositions have had different fluid histories compared to those with normal ?18O values. Rocks with depleted 18O mainly have primary medium-to-high salinity inclusions in omphacite, kyanite and quartz, and abundant secondary low-salinity or pure water inclusions in quartz, indicating a high-salinity-brine-dominated fluid system during peak UHP metamorphism; no carbonic inclusions have been identified in these rocks. By contrast, primary very high-density CO2 inclusions are commonly found in the rocks with normal ?18O values. These observations suggest that fluid and oxygen isotope composition of minerals are related and reflect variable degrees of alterations of the Dabie-Sulu UHP metamorphic rocks.

  7. Contrasting plate-tectonic styles of the Qinling-Dabie-Sulu and Franciscan metamorphic belts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ernst, W. G.; Liou, J. G.

    1995-04-01

    The Dabie Mountains are part of the >2000-km-long Qinling-Dabie-Sulu suture zone juxtaposing the Sino-Korean and Yangtze cratons. An eastern extension apparently crosses Korea and lies along the Japan Sea side of Honshu as the Imjingang and Sangun terranes, respectively; a northeastern segment may be present in Sikhote-Alin, Russian Far East. This orogenic belt records late Paleozoic ocean-floor consumption and the Triassic collision of two Precambrian continental massifs in east-central China. Coesite and microdiamond inclusions in strong, refractory minerals of eclogite facies ultrahigh-pressure (UHP) metamorphic rocks in the Dabie-Sulu area attest to profound subduction of a leading salient of the old, cold Yangtze craton, now recovered through tectonic exhumation and erosion. Northward increase in intensity of subsolidus recrystallization of the suture complex is analogous to the internal progression in grade of high-pressure (HP) and UHP metamorphism documented in the Western Alps. In both regions, subduction of narrow prongs of continental material, UHP metamorphism, and return toward midcrustal levels of relatively lower density, buoyant microcontinental blocks resulted from delamination of these rocks from the descending, higher density, oceanic-crust-capped lithospheric plate. Such salients of continental crust represent an integral structural part of the downgoing slab, remain intact, and may be dragged to great depths before disengaging and rising differentially as coherent blocks. UHP parageneses include trace mineralogic relics requiring peak metamorphic conditions of 700 900 ° C and 28 35 kbar or more. In contrast, Pacific-type HP metamorphic belts, as represented by the Franciscan Complex of western California, recrystallized under physical conditions up to 200 500 ° C, 10 ± 3 kbar. In this setting, voluminous quartzo-feldspathic and graywacke debris was carried downward on oceanic-crust-capped lithosphere, choking the subduction zone with incompetent material. Sited between both plates, and strongly adhering to neither, this buoyant, largely sedimentary complex decoupled at 25 30 km depth, and ascended toward the surface. In both Alpine-type intracontinental collision and Pacific-type underflow, light sialic material displaced dense mantle; thus, the return to midcrustal levels was propelled dominantly by body forces.

  8. Buoyancy-driven, rapid exhumation of ultrahigh-pressure metamorphosed continental?crust

    PubMed Central

    Ernst, W. G.; Maruyama, S.; Wallis, S.

    1997-01-01

    Preservation of ultrahigh-pressure (UHP) minerals formed at depths of 90–125 km require unusual conditions. Our subduction model involves underflow of a salient (250 ± 150 km wide, 90–125 km long) of continental crust embedded in cold, largely oceanic crust-capped lithosphere; loss of leading portions of the high-density oceanic lithosphere by slab break-off, as increasing volumes of microcontinental material enter the subduction zone; buoyancy-driven return toward midcrustal levels of a thin (2–15 km thick), low-density slice; finally, uplift, backfolding, normal faulting, and exposure of the UHP terrane. Sustained over ?20 million years, rapid (?5 mm/year) exhumation of the thin-aspect ratio UHP sialic sheet caught between cooler hanging-wall plate and refrigerating, downgoing lithosphere allows withdrawal of heat along both its upper and lower surfaces. The intracratonal position of most UHP complexes reflects consumption of an intervening ocean basin and introduction of a sialic promontory into the subduction zone. UHP metamorphic terranes consist chiefly of transformed, yet relatively low-density continental crust compared with displaced mantle material—otherwise such complexes could not return to shallow depths. Relatively rare metabasaltic, metagabbroic, and metacherty lithologies retain traces of phases characteristic of UHP conditions because they are massive, virtually impervious to fluids, and nearly anhydrous. In contrast, H2O-rich quartzofeldspathic, gneissose/schistose, more permeable metasedimentary and metagranitic units have backreacted thoroughly, so coesite and other UHP silicates are exceedingly rare. Because of the initial presence of biogenic carbon, and its especially sluggish transformation rate, UHP paragneisses contain the most abundantly preserved crustal diamonds. PMID:11038569

  9. Buoyancy-driven, rapid exhumation of ultrahigh-pressure metamorphosed continental crust.

    PubMed

    Ernst, W G; Maruyama, S; Wallis, S

    1997-09-01

    Preservation of ultrahigh-pressure (UHP) minerals formed at depths of 90-125 km require unusual conditions. Our subduction model involves underflow of a salient (250 +/- 150 km wide, 90-125 km long) of continental crust embedded in cold, largely oceanic crust-capped lithosphere; loss of leading portions of the high-density oceanic lithosphere by slab break-off, as increasing volumes of microcontinental material enter the subduction zone; buoyancy-driven return toward midcrustal levels of a thin (2-15 km thick), low-density slice; finally, uplift, backfolding, normal faulting, and exposure of the UHP terrane. Sustained over approximately 20 million years, rapid ( approximately 5 mm/year) exhumation of the thin-aspect ratio UHP sialic sheet caught between cooler hanging-wall plate and refrigerating, downgoing lithosphere allows withdrawal of heat along both its upper and lower surfaces. The intracratonal position of most UHP complexes reflects consumption of an intervening ocean basin and introduction of a sialic promontory into the subduction zone. UHP metamorphic terranes consist chiefly of transformed, yet relatively low-density continental crust compared with displaced mantle material-otherwise such complexes could not return to shallow depths. Relatively rare metabasaltic, metagabbroic, and metacherty lithologies retain traces of phases characteristic of UHP conditions because they are massive, virtually impervious to fluids, and nearly anhydrous. In contrast, H2O-rich quartzofeldspathic, gneissose/schistose, more permeable metasedimentary and metagranitic units have backreacted thoroughly, so coesite and other UHP silicates are exceedingly rare. Because of the initial presence of biogenic carbon, and its especially sluggish transformation rate, UHP paragneisses contain the most abundantly preserved crustal diamonds. PMID:11038569

  10. Magmatic peridotites and pyroxenites, Andong Ultramafic Complex, Korea: Geochemical evidence for supra-subduction zone formation and extensive melt-rock interaction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whattam, Scott A.; Cho, Moonsup; Smith, Ian E. M.

    2011-12-01

    The Andong Ultramafic Complex (AUC) mainly comprises peridotites (wehrlites ± plagioclase or spinel; or plagioclase + spinel) and related serpentinites with subordinate low-Al pyroxenites (clinopyroxenites, orthopyroxenites, and websterites). These rocks are compositionally similar to sub-continental lithospheric mantle peridotites and pyroxenites. Wehrlites formed predominantly by fractional crystallization processes within supra-subduction zone magmas and the pyroxenites are generally consistent with segregation and accumulation in similar magmas. Bulk rock ratios of Al2O3/SiO2 (0.01-0.03) and MgO/SiO2 (up to > 1) exhibited by the wehrlites and serpentinites indicate crystallization from a refractory source that underwent high degrees of melt extraction. Spinel chemistry confirms this and demonstrates that wehrlite and clinoproxenite protoliths underwent approximately 20-23% and 12-15% partial melting, respectively. Wehrlites and serpentinites also preserve evidence of extensive melt-peridotite interaction manifest as bulk rock SiO2-depletions and FeOt-enrichments relative to mantle residua as well as low Mg# (0.39-0.45) spinels with variable Ti contents but constant Cr# (0.42-0.47). These features are identical to those of ‘impregnated' plagioclase-peridotites of abyssal and sub-continental environments and compositional trends in spinel space imply reaction between secondary, MORB-like melts saturated in olivine + clinopyroxene or olivine and a harzburgitic protolith. High olivine:pyroxene (~ 3:1) and clinopyroxene:orthopyroxene ratios of the wehrlites coupled with chemical data dictate that reactions entailed orthopyroxene dissolution and olivine recrystallization. All AUC rock types exhibit primitive mantle-normalized incompatible element signatures characterized by LILE-enrichments, high fluid-mobile/immobile element ratios (Sr/Nd, Ba/La and Pb/Ce ? 1) and prominent HFSE (Nb, Zr, and Ti) depletions indicative of generation in a sub-arc environment within a supra-subduction zone system. A candidate for the associated arc-system is the one responsible for nearby arc-related Jurassic granitoids. Southeast-directed thrusting along the Andong Fault System may account for subsequent emplacement of the AUC into the Gyeongsang Basin.

  11. 3D double difference velocity tomography of the Middle America subduction zone beneath Nicaragua and Costa Rica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Driskell, Melissa M.

    Waveform and arrival onset data collected on five amphibious arrays deployed along the Costa Rica-Nicaragua portion of the Middle America subduction zone are integrated to conduct high resolution velocity and location studies. Pick quality is evaluated using an automated arrival detection algorithm based on the wavelet transform and Akaike information criterion, resulting in revised pick weights for inversion studies. I explore the effect of new weighting and removal of poor data by relocating hypocenters through a minimum one dimensional velocity model and conducting double-difference local earthquake tomography (LET). Analysis of the hypocenter relocation and seismic velocity tomography results suggest that using the improved quality determinations improve sharpness in the velocity images. Double-difference LET, utilizing catalog derived absolute and differential times and waveform cross-correlation derived differential times, is conducted with the quality-controlled dataset. Results show improved hypocentral locations of seismogenic zone earthquakes and compressional and shear velocity structure of the seismogenic zone. There is high variability in seismic structure along the length of the margin. I find that the up-dip limit of seismogenic zone microseismicity is variable but approximately corresponds to the 150°C isotherm. The downdip limit of interseismic microseismicity occurs near the continental Moho intersection with the subducting plate interface. Seismicity is sparser in Nicaragua and low velocities dominate the margin. Low Vp and high Vp/Vs in the oceanic mantle suggest serpentinization. Seismogenic zone seismicity resides in a low Vp and low Vp/Vs band that parallels the top of the high-velocity subducting slab. This low velocity band thin and weakens from north to south. This may reflect decreasing hydration or changes in overpressure along the plate interface. The addition of data from the TUCAN experiment provides additional raypath coverage along margin due to the broader aperture of the array. The results are compared to the coarse model and an ancillary method of calculating high-resolution Vp/Vs measurements. Using the highest resolution data along the Nicoya peninsula, we find that regions with subduction tremor and slow slip are associated with high Vp zones. These regions may be a better proxy signal for defining the limit of rupture during major earthquakes.

  12. Ascent paths of fluids and partial melts at the Sunda Arc compared with other subduction zones by geophysical parameters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luehr, B.-G.; Koulakov, I.; Kopp, H.; Rabbel, W.; Zschau, J.

    2012-04-01

    During the last decades many investigations were carried out at active continental margins to understand the link between the subduction of the fluid saturated oceanic plate and the process of ascent of fluids and partial melts forming a magmatic system that leads to volcanism at the earth surface. With seismic methods the physical structure of the down going slab and the part above it can be resolved. In particular the record of the natural seismicity and its distribution allows the three-dimensional imaging of the entire crust and lithosphere structure above the Wadati Benioff zone with the help of tomographic procedures, and therewith the entire ascent path region and reservoirs of fluids and melts, which are responsible for volcanism. If we consider statistically the distance between the volcanic chain at the earth surface down to the subducted plate and the Wadati Benioff zone then the mean value of the depth distance results of approximately 110 kilometers. Surprisingly, this depth range shows pronounced seismicity at most of all subduction zones. Additionally, mineralogical investigations in the lab have shown that the diving plate is maximal dehydrated around the 100 km depth because of temperature and pressure conditions at this depth range. However, assuming a vertical fluid ascent there are exceptions. For instance at the Sunda Arc beneath Central Java the vertical distance results in approximately 150 km, but, seismic investigations have shown that here the fluids do not ascend vertically, but inclined even from a source area at around the 100 km depth. With the seismic tomography areas where fluids ascent and the appearance of partial melts as well as the distribution of these materials in the crust can be detected and imaged by their lowered seismic velocities, high Vp/Vs ratios, as well as increased attenuation of seismic shear waves. The seismic velocity anomalies detected so far are within a range of a few per cent to more than 30% reduction. Discussed will be results with findings from structural investigations at Lake Toba, Sumatra, Kamchatka and parts of the Andes.

  13. High Resolution 3-D Waveform Tomography of the Lithospheric Structure of the Hellenic Subduction Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lamara, Samir; Friederich, Wolfgang; Schumacher, Florian; Meier, Thomas; Egelados Working Group

    2015-04-01

    We present a high-resolution lithospheric shear-wave velocity model of the Hellenic subduction zone obtained by full waveform tomography of the EGELADOS project data. This high quality data was collected with the broadband amphibian seismic network EGELADOS that was deployed all over the southern Aegean from October 2005 to April 2007 providing a sampling of the south Aegean lithosphere with a resolution never reached before. Because of the strong deformations in the Hellenic subduction zone and the linear approximation in solving the full waveform inverse problem, a special care was taken to guarantee the best possible accuracy of earthquakes parameters and initial reference models. The accurate locations of the selected earthquakes were hence re-estimated and the best moment tensors were selected by computing the misfits between the observed seismograms for one event and a set of synthetics calculated for every value of the fault angles (strike, dip and rake) and hypocenter depths. On the other hand, instead of using an average 1D reference model for the complete region, a 1D path-specific approach permitted to obtain the 1D initial model for each source-receiver pair by waveform fitting using a grid search varying the Moho depth and the average S-wave velocity in the crust. These models were then refined by a 1D inversion and used to calculate the sensitivity kernels for each source-receiver pair. For the inversion, we adopted a special formulation including a correction term which permits to use the path-specific sensitivity kernels in an inversion for 3D velocity perturbations relative to a single 1D reference model constructed from all these 1D initial models. The inversion was done in frequency domain with a frequency window ranging from 0.03 Hz to 0.1 Hz. For the selected 2695 paths the total number of data values reached 140140. The model was discretized in volume cells with a varying vertical width and a fixed lateral one of approximately 15 km, resulting in 67320 model parameters. Adding the smoothing and damping constraints we solved in total a system of 274780 equations for 67320 unknowns. The 3D tomographic model obtained from the full waveform inversion of the shear-wave velocity resolves in high details the crustal structure of the Hellenic subduction zone and images distinctly the eastern part of the volcanic arc where most of the actual volcanic activity is concentrated. Thinning of the crust in the Gulf of Corinth and many special features of the forearc such as low velocity anomalies throughout its upper 40 km depth are also well imaged. The crustal thickness in the southern Aegean shows strong variations in the whole region with a shallower Moho in the volcanic arc and the Cretan Sea (from 18 km to 25 km) and a thicker one beneath the entire forearc especially in its south-eastern part (from 45 to 50 km).

  14. Fractal analysis of the spatial distribution of earthquakes along the Hellenic Subduction Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Papadakis, Giorgos; Vallianatos, Filippos; Sammonds, Peter

    2014-05-01

    The Hellenic Subduction Zone (HSZ) is the most seismically active region in Europe. Many destructive earthquakes have taken place along the HSZ in the past. The evolution of such active regions is expressed through seismicity and is characterized by complex phenomenology. The understanding of the tectonic evolution process and the physical state of subducting regimes is crucial in earthquake prediction. In recent years, there is a growing interest concerning an approach to seismicity based on the science of complex systems (Papadakis et al., 2013; Vallianatos et al., 2012). In this study we calculate the fractal dimension of the spatial distribution of earthquakes along the HSZ and we aim to understand the significance of the obtained values to the tectonic and geodynamic evolution of this area. We use the external seismic sources provided by Papaioannou and Papazachos (2000) to create a dataset regarding the subduction zone. According to the aforementioned authors, we define five seismic zones. Then, we structure an earthquake dataset which is based on the updated and extended earthquake catalogue for Greece and the adjacent areas by Makropoulos et al. (2012), covering the period 1976-2009. The fractal dimension of the spatial distribution of earthquakes is calculated for each seismic zone and for the HSZ as a unified system using the box-counting method (Turcotte, 1997; Robertson et al., 1995; Caneva and Smirnov, 2004). Moreover, the variation of the fractal dimension is demonstrated in different time windows. These spatiotemporal variations could be used as an additional index to inform us about the physical state of each seismic zone. As a precursor in earthquake forecasting, the use of the fractal dimension appears to be a very interesting future work. Acknowledgements Giorgos Papadakis wish to acknowledge the Greek State Scholarships Foundation (IKY). References Caneva, A., Smirnov, V., 2004. Using the fractal dimension of earthquake distributions and the slope of the recurrence curve to forecast earthquakes in Colombia. Earth Sci. Res. J., 8, 3-9. Makropoulos, K., Kaviris, G., Kouskouna, V., 2012. An updated and extended earthquake catalogue for Greece and adjacent areas since 1900. Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 12, 1425-1430. Papadakis, G., Vallianatos, F., Sammonds, P., 2013. Evidence of non extensive statistical physics behavior of the Hellenic Subduction Zone seismicity. Tectonophysics, 608, 1037-1048. Papaioannou, C.A., Papazachos, B.C., 2000. Time-independent and time-dependent seismic hazard in Greece based on seismogenic sources. Bull. Seismol. Soc. Am., 90, 22-33. Robertson, M.C., Sammis, C.G., Sahimi, M., Martin, A.J., 1995. Fractal analysis of three-dimensional spatial distributions of earthquakes with a percolation interpretation. J. Geophys. Res., 100, 609-620. Turcotte, D.L., 1997. Fractals and chaos in geology and geophysics. Second Edition, Cambridge University Press. Vallianatos, F., Michas, G., Papadakis, G., Sammonds, P., 2012. A non-extensive statistical physics view to the spatiotemporal properties of the June 1995, Aigion earthquake (M6.2) aftershock sequence (West Corinth rift, Greece). Acta Geophys., 60, 758-768.

  15. CO2 analysis in high-pressure melts and implications for carbon recycling in subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hermann, J.; Martin, L.

    2012-04-01

    Carbon recycling in subduction zones plays an important role in the evolution of climate through geological time and in the formation of diamonds in the deep mantle. Carbonates formed during seafloor alteration of the oceanic crust are buried into the deep Earth along subduction zones. We conducted experiments with a starting material made of a synthetic Potassium, CO2 and H2O-bearing basaltic composition at 3.0 and 3.5 GPa, 700 - 800°C and at 4.5 GPa, 800-900°C in a piston-cylinder apparatus, corresponding to typical conditions of the subducted slab at subarc conditions. The experimental results indicate that the solidus occurs between 700 and 750°C at both 3.0 and 3.5 GPa. In order to understand the CO2 transfer in subduction zones it is thus important to quantify the molar X(CO2)=CO2/(CO2+H2O) of such aqueous fluid or hydrous melt. However, so far this has not been possible because CO2 exsolves from the fluid/melt in the experiments during quenching. We have developed a new method where the experimental capsules are pierced under vacuum and the gas present after the experiment is mixed with He and directly analysed with a gas chromatograph equipped with a thermal conductivity detector (GC-TCD). Peak areas read in the chromatograms are proportional to the partial pressures of CO2 and H2O. Small quantities of these gasses can be determined with accuracy (±5%, on average) after the calibration of the GC-TCD using pure gas standards. For subsolidus runs at 700°C, GC-TCD analyses of the aqueous fluid show a decrease of the X(CO2) from 5.9±0.3% to 3.8±0.3% with increasing pressure from 3.0 to 3.5 GPa, respectively. It is more difficult to assess the CO2-H2O compositions of the hydrous melts. GC-TCD analysis of runs at 775°C show that approximately 75% (X(CO2)=3.6±0.1%) and 50% (X(CO2) =5.7±0.3%) of the volatiles dissolved in the melt are exsolved during the quench in the 3.5 and 3.0 GPa experiments, respectively. Additionally, the glass pools have been analysed by FTIR spectroscopy using an ATR objective, which provides an excellent means of comparison between relative amounts of dissolved volatile species. The main carbon species in the melt pool is the carbonate ion. The relative heights of the total water and carbonate peaks indicate that the glass at 3.5 GPa has about four times higher X(CO2) than the one at 3.0 GPa and X(CO2) values are 2-3% and 8-12% at 3 and 3.5 GPa, respectively. The resulting X(CO2) of the melt that was present at experimental conditions is thus ~3% at 3.0 GPa and ~7% at 3.5 GPa, 775°C (Fig. 3), providing evidence for a significant enhancement of carbonate solubility with increasing pressure in hydrous melts. Our results suggest that fluid fluxed partial melting of altered basalts provides an efficient mechanism by which significant amounts of subducted carbon can be brought back to the atmosphere via arc magmatism on relatively short time scales of less than 10 Ma.

  16. Apparent stress, fault maturity and seismic hazard for normal-fault earthquakes at subduction zones

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Choy, G.L.; Kirby, S.H.

    2004-01-01

    The behavior of apparent stress for normal-fault earthquakes at subduction zones is derived by examining the apparent stress (?? a = ??Es/Mo, where E s is radiated energy and Mo is seismic moment) of all globally distributed shallow (depth, ?? 1 MPa) are also generally intraslab, but occur where the lithosphere has just begun subduction beneath the overriding plate. They usually occur in cold slabs near trenches where the direction of plate motion across the trench is oblique to the trench axis, or where there are local contortions or geometrical complexities of the plate boundary. Lower ??a (< 1 MPa) is associated with events occurring at the outer rise (OR) complex (between the OR and the trench axis), as well as with intracrustal events occurring just landward of the trench. The average apparent stress of intraslab-normal-fault earthquakes is considerably higher than the average apparent stress of interplate-thrust-fault earthquakes. In turn, the average ?? a of strike-slip earthquakes in intraoceanic environments is considerably higher than that of intraslab-normal-fault earthquakes. The variation of average ??a with focal mechanism and tectonic regime suggests that the level of ?? a is related to fault maturity. Lower stress drops are needed to rupture mature faults such as those found at plate interfaces that have been smoothed by large cumulative displacements (from hundreds to thousands of kilometres). In contrast, immature faults, such as those on which intraslab-normal-fault earthquakes generally occur, are found in cold and intact lithosphere in which total fault displacement has been much less (from hundreds of metres to a few kilometres). Also, faults on which high ??a oceanic strike-slip earthquakes occur are predominantly intraplate or at evolving ends of transforms. At subduction zones, earthquakes occurring on immature faults are likely to be more hazardous as they tend to generate higher amounts of radiated energy per unit of moment than earthquakes occurring on mature faults. We have identified earthquake pairs in which an interplate-thrust and an intraslab-normal earthquake occurred remarkably close in space and time. The intraslab-normal member of each pair radiated anomalously high amounts of energy compared to its thrust-fault counterpart. These intraslab earthquakes probably ruptured intact slab mantle and are dramatic examples in which Mc (an energy magnitude) is shown to be a far better estimate of the potential for earthquake damage than Mw. This discovery may help explain why loss of life as a result of intraslab earthquakes was greater in the 20th century in Latin America than the fatalities associated with interplate-thrust events that represented much higher total moment release. ?? 2004 RAS.

  17. Paleostress analysis of a subduction zone megasplay fault - An example from the Nobeoka Thrust, Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kawasaki, R.; Hamahashi, M.; Hashimoto, Y.; Otsubo, M.; Yamaguchi, A.; Kitamura, Y.; Kameda, J.; Hamada, Y.; Fukuchi, R.; Kimura, G.

    2014-12-01

    The megasplay faults in subduction zones, branching from plate boundary thrusts, are thought to have a potential to generate earthquakes and accompany tsunamis. Paleo-splay faults exposed on land often preserve clear deformation features of the seismogenic zone and provide information on the fault mechanisms at depth. One of the important information that can be obtained from exhumed faults is paleo-stress field. Here we investigated the Nobeoka Thrust, a fossilized megasplay fault in the Shimanto Belt in Kyushu, which consists of phyllite and sandstone-shale mélanges that have experienced maximum burial temperatures of ~250 -320°C, [Kondo et al., 2005, Tectonics 24.6(2005)]. Kondo et al. (2005) described two orientations of slickensides from the outcrop, suggesting the existence of flexural gentle fold in kilometer scale. The paleo-stress fields preserved in the Nobeoka Thrust is likely to represent multiple stages occurring during burial and uplift, enabling the reconstruction of fault motions along the fault. In this study, we analyzed paleo-stress from slip vectors on small faults observed in the drilled cores of the Nobeoka Thrust obtained from scientific drilling performed in 2011. Small faults are expected to be less-reactivated and their population is much larger than that of large faults, providing high statistical reliability. Multiple inverse method [MIM; Yamaji, 2000, Journal of Structural Geology, 22, 441-452] was applied to the small faults. K-means clustering [Otsubo et al. , 2006, Journal of Structural Geology, 28, 991-997] was applied to stress tensors detected by the MIM for estimating optimal solutions. The results reveal stress solution of four directions existing throughout the drilled range. The stress solution is applied to faults distributed among different lithology, and therefore the paleo-stress is thought to have acted on the whole cores. By drawing the stress polygon from the direction of the stress solution and the stress rate, we estimate the stress state of the Nobeoka Thrust and discuss potential insights to the fault stress evolution of megasplay fault in a subduction zone.

  18. Interseismic coupling and seismic potential along the Central Andes subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chlieh, Mohamed; Perfettini, Hugo; Tavera, Hernando; Avouac, Jean-Philippe; Remy, Dominique; Nocquet, Jean-Mathieu; Rolandone, FréDéRique; Bondoux, Francis; Gabalda, Germinal; Bonvalot, Sylvain

    2011-12-01

    We use about two decades of geodetic measurements to characterize interseismic strain build up along the Central Andes subduction zone from Lima, Peru, to Antofagasta, Chile. These measurements are modeled assuming a 3-plate model (Nazca, Andean sliver and South America Craton) and spatially varying interseismic coupling (ISC) on the Nazca megathrust interface. We also determine slip models of the 1996 Mw = 7.7 Nazca, the 2001 Mw = 8.4 Arequipa, the 2007 Mw = 8.0 Pisco and the Mw = 7.7 Tocopilla earthquakes. We find that the data require a highly heterogeneous ISC pattern and that, overall, areas with large seismic slip coincide with areas which remain locked in the interseismic period (with high ISC). Offshore Lima where the ISC is high, a Mw˜8.6-8.8 earthquake occurred in 1746. This area ruptured again in a sequence of four Mw˜8.0 earthquakes in 1940, 1966, 1974 and 2007 but these events released only a small fraction of the elastic strain which has built up since 1746 so that enough elastic strain might be available there to generate a Mw > 8.5 earthquake. The region where the Nazca ridge subducts appears to be mostly creeping aseismically in the interseismic period (low ISC) and seems to act as a permanent barrier as no large earthquake ruptured through it in the last 500 years. In southern Peru, ISC is relatively high and the deficit of moment accumulated since the Mw˜8.8 earthquake of 1868 is equivalent to a magnitude Mw˜8.4 earthquake. Two asperities separated by a subtle aseismic creeping patch are revealed there. This aseismic patch may arrest some rupture as happened during the 2001 Arequipa earthquake, but the larger earthquakes of 1604 and 1868 were able to rupture through it. In northern Chile, ISC is very high and the rupture of the 2007 Tocopilla earthquake has released only 4% of the elastic strain that has accumulated since 1877. The deficit of moment which has accumulated there is equivalent to a magnitude Mw˜8.7 earthquake. This study thus provides elements to assess the location, size and magnitude of future large megathurst earthquakes in the Central Andes subduction zone. Caveats of this study are that interseismic strain of the forearc is assumed time invariant and entirely elastic. Also a major source of uncertainty is due to fact that the available data place very little constraints on interseismic coupling at shallow depth near the trench, except offshore Lima where sea bottom geodetic measurements have been collected suggesting strong coupling.

  19. Back-arc strain in subduction zones: Statistical observations versus numerical modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arcay, D.; Lallemand, S.; Doin, M.-P.

    2008-05-01

    Recent statistical analysis by Lallemand et al. (2008) of subduction zone parameters revealed that the back-arc deformation mode depends on the combination between the subducting (vsub) and upper (vup) plate velocities. No significant strain is recorded in the arc area if plate kinematics verifies vup = 0.5 vsub - 2.3 (cm/a) in the HS3 reference frame. Arc spreading (shortening) occurs if vup is greater (lower) than the preceding relationship. We test this statistical law with numerical models of subduction, by applying constant plate velocities far away from the subduction zone. The subducting lithosphere is free to deform at all depths. We quantify the force applied on the two converging plates to sustain constant surface velocities. The simulated rheology combined viscous (non-Newtonian) and brittle behaviors, and depends on water content. The influence of subduction rate vs is first studied for a fixed upper plate. After 950 km of convergence (steady state slab pull), the transition from extensional to compressive stresses in the upper plate occurs for vs ˜ 1.4 cm/a. The effect of upper plate velocity is then tested at constant subduction rate. Upper plate retreat (advance) with respect to the trench increases extension (compression) in the arc lithosphere and increases (decreases) the subducting plate dip. Our modeling confirms the statistical kinematic relationship between vsub and vup that describes the transition from extensional to compressive stresses in the arc lithosphere, even if the modeled law is shifted toward higher rates of upper plate retreat, using our set of physical parameters (e.g., 100 km thick subducting oceanic plate) and short-term simulations. Our results make valid the choice of the HS3 reference frame for assessing plate velocity influence on arc tectonic regime. The subduction model suggests that friction along the interplate contact and the mantle Stokes reaction could be the two main forces competing against slab pull for upper mantle subductions. Besides, our simulations show that the arc deformation mode is strongly time dependent.

  20. Holocene Tsunami Deposits From Large Tsunamis Along the Kuril Subduction Zone, Northeast Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nanayama, F.; Furukawa, R.; Satake, K.; Soeda, Y.; Shigeno, K.

    2003-12-01

    Holocene tsunami deposits in eastern Hokkaido between Nemuro and Tokachi show that the Kuril subduction zone repeatedly produced earthquakes and tsunamis larger than those recorded in this region since AD 1804 (Nanayama et al., Nature, 424, 660-663, 2003). Twenty-two postulated tsunami sand layers from the past 9500 years are preserved on lake bottom near Kushiro City, and about ten postulated tsunami sand layers from the past 3000 years are preserved in peat layers on the coastal marsh of Kiritappu. We dated these ten tsunami deposits (named Ts1 to Ts10 from shallower to deeper) in peat layers by radiocarbon and tephrochronology, correlated them with historical earthquakes and tsunamis, and surveyed their spatial distribution to estimate the tsunamisO inland inundation limits. Ts10 and Ts9 are under regional tephra Ta-c2 (ca. 2.5 ka) and represent prehistorical events. Ts8 to Ts5 are between two regional tephra layers Ta-c2 and B-Tm (ca. 9th century). In particular, Ts5 is found just below B-Tm, so it is dated 9th century (Heian era). Ts4 is dated ca 13th century (Kamakura era), while Ts3, found just below Us-b and Ta-b (AD 1667-1663), is dated 17th century (Edo era). Ts2 is dated 19th century (Edo era) and may correspond to the AD 1843 Tempo Tokachi-oki earthquake (Mt 8.0) recorded in a historical document Nikkanki of Kokutai-ji temple at Akkeshi. Ts1 is inferred 20th century and may correspond to the tsunami from the AD 1960 Chilean earthquake (M 9.5) or the AD 1952 Tokachi-oki earthquake (Mt 8.2). Our detailed surveys indicate that Ts3 and Ts4 can be traced more than 3 km from the present coast line in Kirittapu marsh, much longer than the limits (< 1 km) of recent deposits Ts1 and Ts2 or documented inundation of the 19th and 20th century tsunamis. The recurrence intervals of great tsunami inundation are about 400 to 500 years, longer than that of typical interplate earthquakes along the Kuril subduction zone. The longer interval and the apparent large tsunami inundation indicate unusual origin of these tsunamis.

  1. Evolving seismogenic plate boundary megathrust and mega-splay faults in subduction zone (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kimura, G.; Hamahashi, M.; Fukuchi, R.; Yamaguchi, A.; Kameda, J.; Kitamura, Y.; Hashimoto, Y.; Hamada, Y.; Saito, S.; Kawasaki, R.

    2013-12-01

    Understanding the fault mechanism and its relationship to the sesimo-tsunamigenesis is a key of the scientific targets of subduction zone and therefore NantroSEIZE project of IODP and future new drilling project of International Ocean Discovery Program keeps focusing on that. Mega-splay fault branched from plate boundary megathrust in subduction zone is located around the border between outer and inner wedges and is considered to cause great earthquake and tsunami such as 1960 Alaska earthquake, 1944 and 1946 Nankai-Tonankai earthquakes, and 2004 Sumatra earthquakes. Seismic reflection studies for the mega-splay fault in 2D and 3D in the Nankai forearc present the reflector with negative or positive polarities with various amplitudes and suggest complicated petrophysical properties and condition of the fault and its surroundings. The Nankai mega-splay fault at a depth of ~5km is going to be drilled and cored by NantroSEIZE experiments and is expected for great progress of understanding of the fault mechanics. Before drilling the really targeted seismogenic fault, we are conducting many exercises of geophysical and geological observations. The core-log-seismic integrated exercise for the exhumed mega-splay fault by drilling was operated for the Nobeoka thrust in the Shimanto Belt, Kyushu, Japan. The Nobeoka thrust was once buried in the depth >~10km and suffered maximum temperature >~300 dgree C. As the core recovery is ~99%, perfect correlation between the core and logging data is possible. Thickness of the fault zone is >200 m with a ~50 cm thick central fault core dividing the phyllitic hanging wall and the footwall of broken-melange like cataclasite. A-few-meter-thick discrete damage zones with fault cores are recognized by difference in physical properties and visual deformation textures at several horizons in the fault zone. Host rocks for those damaged zones are completely lithified cataclasites with abundant mineral veins, which record the older and deeper deformation in the maximum depth >10km. Temperature difference between the hanging wall and footwall suggests the displacement along the Nobeoka thrust is >10km, which is almost similar to the mega-splay fault in the Nankai Trough. Geological and physical properties of the Nobeoka thrust suggest an evolving process of the seismogenic mega-splay fault associated with seismogenic up-thrust of the inner wedge of the accretionary prism.

  2. Large, pre-digital earthquakes of the Bonin-Mariana subduction zone, 1930-1974

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Okal, Emile A.; Reymond, Dominique; Hongsresawat, Sutatcha

    2013-02-01

    The Bonin-Mariana subduction zone is the end-member example of a decoupled system, as described by Uyeda and Kanamori (1979), with no interplate thrust solutions of moments greater than 8 × 1025 dyn cm known in the CMT catalog, although a number of earthquakes are reported with assigned magnitudes around or above 7, both during the WWSSN period and the historical pre-1962 era. We present a systematic study of these events, including relocation and inversion of moment tensors. We obtain 15 new moment tensor solutions, featuring a wide variety of focal mechanisms both in the fore-arc and the outer rise, and most importantly a shallow-dipping interplate thrust mechanism with a moment of 4 × 1027 dyn cm for the event of 28 December 1940 at a location 175 km East of Pagan. Our results show that the modern CMT catalog still undersamples the seismicity of the Mariana arc, which is thus not immune to relatively large, albeit rare, interplate thrust events, with moments 40 times that of the largest Global-CMT solution. Frequency-magnitude relations would then suggest a return time of 320 years for a magnitude 8 interplate thrust faulting earthquake in the Bonin-Mariana system.

  3. Effect of Murray ridge on the tsunami propagation from Makran subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Swapna, M.; Srivastava, Kirti

    2014-12-01

    The aseismic Murray ridge (MR) is a continuation of the Owen fracture zone which marks the boundary between the Indian and Arabian plates. Due to large variation in morphology and structure within this NE-SW trending ridge in the Arabian Sea a large variation of the bathymetry from few hundred metres to about 4000 m is seen. Observed seismicity on the ridge system is predominantly strike-slip. Tsunamis generated in the Makran subduction zone (MSZ) will propagate through the MR system due to its proximity. As the tsunami speed depends on the depth of the ocean, bathymetry plays a vital role on tsunami propagation. In this paper, the effect of tsunami propagation through the MR system is carried out with the existing bathymetry and comparing the results by removing the bathymetry. To study this phenomenon the 1945 Makran tsunami and worst possible tsunamigenic earthquakes form eastern and western MSZ are considered. The directivity of tsunami propagation with the ridge system is seen to change after crossing the MR towards the southeast direction for tsunamis generated in the eastern MSZ. For tsunami generated in the western MSZ there is no change in its directivity and is almost same as without the ridge with propagation being towards the open sea. Hence the MR not only affects the amplitude of the tsunamis but also the directionality and the arrival times.

  4. Earthquake supercycle in subduction zones controlled by the width of the seismogenic zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Herrendörfer, Robert; van Dinther, Ylona; Gerya, Taras; Dalguer, Luis Angel

    2015-06-01

    A supercycle describes a long-term cluster of differently-sized megathrust earthquakes, leading up to the final complete failure of a subduction zone segment. The precise controls on supercycles are unclear, although structural and frictional heterogeneities are proposed. We recognize that supercycles are suggested to occur in those regions where the estimated downdip width of the seismogenic zone is larger than average. Here we investigate the link between supercycles and the seismogenic zone downdip width using a two-dimensional numerical model. In our simulations, the first megathrust earthquakes in a supercycle generally rupture only the outermost parts of the seismogenic zone. These partial ruptures are stopped owing to a large excess of strength over stress, and transfer stresses towards the centre of the seismogenic zone. In addition to the continued tectonic loading, they thereby gradually reduce the strength excess so that the largest megathrust events finally rupture the entire seismogenic zone and release most of the accumulated stress. A greater width increases the average strength excess and thus favours supercycles over ordinary cycles of only similarly sized complete ruptures. Our results imply that larger than thus far observed earthquakes could conclude a supercycle where seismogenic zone widths are larger than average.

  5. GPS Application : Theoretical Analysis of Coseismic Crustal Deformation of the Subduction Zone Colombia - Ecuador

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ramos Barreto, A. L.; Franco, S. I.; Iglesias, A.

    2010-12-01

    The Colombia - Ecuador trench is located on the northwestern subduction zone along the Nazca and South America plate boundary. The zone is considered tectonically complex and it is continuously under large crustal deformation. The rapid convergence rate (58mm/a) in the zone caused a series of four large earthquakes (Mw>7.5) in the 20th century: 1906(Mw=8.8), 1942 (Mw=7.6), 1958 (Mw=7.7) and 1979 (Mw=8.2), three of them had a tsunamigenic character and affected the coastal region of Colombia and Ecuador. There is a deficit in seismic energy released as an earthquake in the region, since the last event was registered in 1979. Measurements of coseismic permanent displacements of the earth surface from Global Positioning System (GPS) could provide critical information to recognize the areas more sensitive to them and to constraint the geographical distribution of large displacements over the fault plane. Considering a uniform mesh over the rupture areas of the events and adjacent zones, we made a theoretical analysis of expected surface deformations for two rupture scenarios, by using an Okada's simple dislocation model implemented in the Dis3D program. Based on the obtained maximun coseismic deformation, we evaluate the sensibility of the present Colombian GPS stations, and also we propose some possible locations for new stations toward enhancing the network's reliability and sensitivity to the crustal deformation associated with subduction earthquakes in the Colombia - Ecuador zone.

  6. Origin of magmas in subduction zones: a review of experimental studies.

    PubMed

    Kushiro, Ikuo

    2007-02-01

    Studies of the origin of magmas in subduction zones, particularly in the Japanese island arc, have been significantly advanced by petrological, geochemical, geophysical and experimental studies during last 50 years. Kuno's original model(1)) for magma generation in the Japanese island arc, that tholeiite magmas are formed at relatively shallow levels in the mantle on the Pacific Ocean side whereas alkali basalt magmas are formed in deeper levels on the Japan Sea side, stimulated subsequent studies, particularly high-pressure experimental studies in which the author participated. Recent seismic tomographic studies of regions beneath the Japanese island arc demonstrate that seismic low-velocity zones where primary magmas are formed have finger-like shapes and rise obliquely from the Japan Sea side toward the Pacific Ocean side. Based on experimental studies, it is suggested that the compositions of primary magmas depend mainly on the H2O content and degree of melting in the melting zones, and that primary tholeiite magmas are formed by 10-25% melting of the source mantle containing less than 0.2 wt.% H2O. High-alumina basalt and alkali basalt magmas are formed by smaller degrees of melting of similar mantle, whereas primary boninite magmas are formed by more than 20% melting of the source mantle with more than 0.2 wt.% H2O, and finally, high-magnesia andesite magmas are formed by smaller degrees of melting of similar mantle. PMID:24019580

  7. Submarine landslide potential near the megasplay fault at the Nankai subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ikari, Matt J.; Strasser, Michael; Saffer, Demian M.; Kopf, Achim J.

    2011-12-01

    We investigate the mechanics of slope failures on the Nankai accretionary complex offshore Japan in the vicinity of a major out-of-sequence thrust fault (termed the "megasplay"). Incorporating laboratory-measured shear strength of slope sediments sampled during Integrated Ocean Drilling Project (IODP) Expeditions 315 and 316 with local seafloor slope angles from bathymetric data and constraints on in-situ effective stress conditions from drilling, we find that slopes in the study area are stable and submarine landslides are not expected to occur under static conditions. In order to assess the possibility of slope failure triggered by coseismic rupture of the megasplay fault, we use empirical relations for strong ground motion attenuation from earthquakes with Mw 6-9. We find that the slope sediments should be stable based on computations from one model, developed from a catalog of worldwide subduction zone earthquakes ( Youngs et al., 1997). However, using a different model developed primarily from a catalog of crustal earthquakes in Japan ( Kanno et al., 2006), we find that slopes should be unstable for earthquakes 8 ? Mw ? 9, and possibly unstable for events with 6 ? Mw < 8, depending on the proximity of rupture to the seafloor. Considering limitations of the models and geologic observations of slope failure recurrence, the true slope stability is likely to be in between the predictions of the two models, and we suggest that it may be modulated by long-term pore pressure fluctuations.

  8. Origin of magmas in subduction zones: a review of experimental studies

    PubMed Central

    Kushiro, Ikuo

    2007-01-01

    Studies of the origin of magmas in subduction zones, particularly in the Japanese island arc, have been significantly advanced by petrological, geochemical, geophysical and experimental studies during last 50 years. Kuno’s original model1) for magma generation in the Japanese island arc, that tholeiite magmas are formed at relatively shallow levels in the mantle on the Pacific Ocean side whereas alkali basalt magmas are formed in deeper levels on the Japan Sea side, stimulated subsequent studies, particularly high-pressure experimental studies in which the author participated. Recent seismic tomographic studies of regions beneath the Japanese island arc demonstrate that seismic low-velocity zones where primary magmas are formed have finger-like shapes and rise obliquely from the Japan Sea side toward the Pacific Ocean side. Based on experimental studies, it is suggested that the compositions of primary magmas depend mainly on the H2O content and degree of melting in the melting zones, and that primary tholeiite magmas are formed by 10–25% melting of the source mantle containing less than 0.2 wt.% H2O. High-alumina basalt and alkali basalt magmas are formed by smaller degrees of melting of similar mantle, whereas primary boninite magmas are formed by more than 20% melting of the source mantle with more than 0.2 wt.% H2O, and finally, high-magnesia andesite magmas are formed by smaller degrees of melting of similar mantle. PMID:24019580

  9. Subduction zone tectonic studies to develop concepts for the occurrence of sediment subduction (Phase I). Final technical report

    SciTech Connect

    Hilde, T.W.C.

    1984-08-01

    The objective was to determine the fate of sediments at convergent lithospheric plate boundaries. The study focuses on the structures of the Circum-Pacific trenches and shallow portions of the associated subduction zones. Sediment distribution and the nature of sediment deformation was defined through the various stages of plate convergence to determine if the sediments are subducted or accreted. The controlling factors for sediment subduction and/or accretion were determined. 50 figs. (ACR)

  10. A subduction zone reference frame based on slab geometry and subduction partitioning of plate motion and trench migration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schellart, W. P.

    2011-08-01

    The geometry of subducted slabs that interact with the transition zone depends critically on the partitioning of the subduction velocity (vS$\\perp$) at the surface into its subducting plate motion component (vSP$\\perp$) and trench migration component (vT$\\perp$). Geodynamic models of progressive subduction demonstrate such dependence with five distinct slab geometries and corresponding partitioning ratios (vSP$\\perp$/vS$\\perp$): slab draping (vSP$\\perp$/vS$\\perp$ ? 0.5), slab draping with recumbent folds (0.5 < vSP$\\perp$/vS$\\perp$ < ˜0.8), slab piling (˜0.8 ? vSP$\\perp$/vS$\\perp$ ? ˜1.2), slab roll-over with recumbent folds (˜1.2 < vSP$\\perp$/vS$\\perp$ < ˜1.5) and slab roll-over (vSP$\\perp$/vS$\\perp$ ? ˜1.5). The model findings have been applied to subduction zones in nature with well-resolved slab geometries, for which subduction partitioning ratios have been calculated during the last 20 million years in two global reference frames: the Indo-Atlantic and Pacific hotspot reference frames. The model-nature comparison determines in which reference frame subduction partitioning ratios are most in agreement with observed slab geometries. In the Indo-Atlantic frame, five (out of five) selected subduction zone segments with well-resolved slab geometries, plate velocities and trench velocities (Japan, Izu-Bonin, Mariana, Tonga, Kermadec) agree with the geodynamic model predictions, as calculated subduction partitioning ratios match the observed slab geometries. In the Pacific frame the partitioning ratio of only one subduction zone segment (Izu-Bonin) matches observations. It is thus concluded that the Indo-Atlantic hotspot reference frame is preferred over the Pacific one as a subduction zone reference frame in which to describe plate motions, subduction kinematics and mantle flow.

  11. Mechanical model of the interplate shear coupling change associated with the spherical oceanic lithosphere buckling process at subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eguchi, T.

    2012-12-01

    We present a hypothetical model of mechanical stress change on the plate interface due to the slab age increases or decrease after the major spherical buckling at subduction zones. Here, we first assume that the absolute plate motion velocity of the overriding lithosphere is approximately zero at subduction zones concerned. (1) Spherical tectonics suggests that, in the case of both edges of the single trench segment having been fixed with the mantle frame, if the slab age is gradually increasing or decreasing, the normal stress (or shear coupling stresses) on the plate interface will increase or decrease to some extent, respectively. (2) In the case of the abrupt increase or decrease in the slab age, the spherical slab segment might basically follow the mechanical buckling theory. The buckling sequence of the trench segment(s) during morphological transformation is not like as a step function but as a gentle curve of some short period. This is mainly because of the rheology response for the materials concerned, not only the slab segment itself but also the passive viscous flow regime within the surrounding upper mantle layer as well as the overriding lithosphere. When we incorporate the non-negligible absolute motion of the overriding lithosphere or the dominant horizontal compressive tectonic regime due to the approaching effect of zonal buoyant structures such as linear seamount chains at the junction of convergence plate boundaries, the above models on the interplate coupling vs. the gradual slab-age change at subduction zones would become rather complicated.

  12. Reflection seismology: The continental crust (1986). Volume 14

    SciTech Connect

    Barazangi, M.; Brown, L.

    1986-01-01

    This volume explores the major problems of deep geology and continental tectonics, the issues of deep crustal fluids, and the geological significance of deep reflections. It reports on seismic results from Precambrian crust to Paleozoic structures, including seismic results from the Appalachian-Hercynian system and new results from the Cordillera of western North America, the young subduction zone of western Canada, and Antarctica.

  13. Ophiolites and Continental Margins of the Mesozoic Western U.S. Cordillera

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dilek, Y.

    2001-12-01

    The Mesozoic tectonic history of the western U.S. Cordillera records evidence for multiple episodes of accretionary and collisional orogenic events and orogen-parallel strike-slip faulting. Paleozoic-Jurassic volcanic arc complexes and subduction zone assemblages extending from Mexico to Canada represent an East-Pacific magmatic arc system and an accretionary-type orogen evolved along the North American continental margin. Discontinuous exposures of Paleozoic upper mantle rocks and ophiolitic units structurally beneath this magmatic arc system are remnants of the Panthalassan oceanic lithosphere, which was consumed beneath the North American continent. Pieces of this subducted Panthalassan oceanic lithosphere that underwent high-P metamorphism are locally exposed in the Sierra Nevada foothills (e.g. Feather River Peridotite) indicating that they were subsequently (during the Jurassic) educted in an oblique convergent zone along the continental margin. This west-facing continental margin arc evolved in a broad graben system during much of the Jurassic as a result of extension in the upper plate, keeping pace with slab rollback of the east-dipping subduction zone. Lower to Middle Jurassic volcanoplutonic complexes underlain by an Upper Paleozoic-Lower Mesozoic polygenetic ophiolitic basement currently extend from Baja California-western Mexico through the Sierra-Klamath terranes to Stikinia-Intermontane Superterranes in Canada and represent an archipelago of an east-facing ensimatic arc terrane that developed west and outboard of the North American continental margin arc. The Smartville, Great Valley, and Coast Range ophiolites (S-GV-CR) in northern California are part of this ensimatic terrane and represent the island arc, arc basement, and back-arc tectonic settings, respectively. The oceanic Josephine-Rogue-Chetco-Rattlesnake-Hayfork tectonostratigraphic units in the Klamath Mountains constitute a west-facing island arc system in this ensimatic terrane as a counterpart of the east-facing S-GV-CR system to the south. The Guerrero intra-oceanic island arc system in Mexico was also part of the ensimatic arc terrane. Incorporation of this super arc terrane into the North American continent occurred diachronously along the irregular continental margin in the Middle Jurassic (in the north) through Early Cretaceous (in the south) during an arc-continent collision, marking a collisional orogenic episode in the North American Cordilleran history. Rifting of this accreted arc in the Late Jurassic (155-148 Ma) might have resulted from a sinistral transtensional deformation associated with the rapid NW motion of North America. Magmas generated during this rifting event probably migrated through the accreted arc crust and the continental margin units in the tectonic lower plate. The Franciscan subduction zone dipping eastwards beneath the continent was established in the latest Jurassic, following the collisional event and restoring the North American Cordillera back into an accretionary-type, Andean-style orogen. Different episodes of orogen-parallel intra-continental strike-slip faulting facilitated lateral dispersion of accreted terranes and continental margin units during the Early Cretaceous and transpressional deformation and batholithic magmatism in the Sierra Nevada magmatic arc in the Late Cretaceous. A Jurassic-Cretaceous island arc system (Wrangellia-Insular Superterrane) that had developed west of the Jurassic archipelago collapsed into the edge of North America during Late Cretaceous-Tertiary time and underwent northward lateral translation along the continental margin. These observations and interpretations have strong implications for the tectonic evolution of Central America and the Caribbean region.

  14. Influence of deformation mechanisms and metamorphic reactions during strain localization in the continental crust under lower amphibolite facies conditions: an example from the Gotthard massif

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oliot, E.; Goncalves, P.; Schulmann, K.; Marquer, D.

    2009-04-01

    Ductile shear zones are the result of the process of strain localization in the continental crust. Depending on the metamorphic conditions during deformation, strain localization is coeval with dramatic changes in microstructures, mineralogy and mass transfers, due to the interactions with externally-derived fluid. Therefore, to accurately model the mechanisms of strain localization, it is critical to identify deformation mechanisms related to the recrystallization of the quartzo-feldspathic assemblages, and to better constrain the role of metamorphic reactions during deformation. The aim of this contribution is to characterize the mineralogical, geochemical, textural and microstructural evolution of a high strain zone from the Fibbia granite, which is located in the Gotthard Massif (External Crystalline Massif, Central Alps). This variscan massif has been affected by Alpine Tertiary metamorphism and deformation under lower amphibolite facies conditions. The strain gradient is approximately a meter width. The rock texture evolves from a weakly deformed granite, toward an orthogneiss, a mylonite and a ~10 cm-wide ultramylonite. The mineralogical assemblage changes from a metastable magmatic assemblage consisting of Qtz + Kspar + Pla + Bio ± Pheng ± Grt ± Ep to a fine banded texture consisting of a quartzo-feldspathic matrix, with metamorphic phyllosilicates (biotite and phengite) and garnet in the ultramylonite. Cathodoluminescence (CL) imaging has been used to quantify the modal proportions of phases in the quartzo-feldspathic matrix in this strain gradient. More specifically, in the orthogneiss and the mylonite, CL imaging reveals a subtle layering consisting of alternating bands of quartz-rich ribbons, K-feldspars and coupled quartz- and plagioclase-rich ribbons. The texture in the ultramylonite is more homogeneous with isolated single quartz and K-feldspar grains. CL imaging has also revealed chemical zoning, as "core and mantle" texture in plagioclases. With increasing strain, modal abundance of K-feldspars decreases from 28% to 16%, whereas both micas increase from 5% to 21%. Similarly, albite evolves from 25% to 8%, whereas oligoclase evolves from 5% to 25%. Deformation mechanisms responsible for these microstructures have been studied by combining a quantitative textural analysis (CSD, SPO, grain boundary frequency and orientation - PolyLX MatlabTM toolbox; Lexa, 2005) and a crystallographic study by EBSD. Deformation mechanisms of quartz, K-feldspar and plagioclase are a combination of SGR and GBM in the orthogneiss and in the mylonite, whereas GBS is active in the ultramylonite. CPO characteristic features are still a matter of debate. Because mass transfers occurred in this shear zone (gains of MnO, CaO, Fe2O3, P2O5 and TiO2) without volume change, thermodynamic modeling of phase relations in such open system must consider the variations of effective bulk rock composition during deformation. In this example, phase relations have been mapped using Perple_X'07 (Connolly, 2005) as a function of P, T, M(H2O) and X(bulk composition), in order to highlight the influence of subtle mass transfers on the syn-deformation stability of mineral assemblages at 500°C and 7.2 kbars. A particular attention has been paid to the role of water content on the stable assemblage and on compositions of metamorphic phyllosilicates. Water under-saturated conditions induce the stability of aluminosilicates, and should increase the Xmg in biotite and decrease the amount of tschermak substitution in phengite. P- and T-M(H20) diagram suggest that the Alpine ductile shear zones occurred under water-saturated conditions. This study reveals that strain localization is related to the metamorphic reactions (breakdowns of K-feldspars to phengites and magmatic plagioclase to albite and oligoclase), which induce a strong decrease in grain size reduction and a switch in deformation mechanism from SGR and GBM to GBS in the ultramylonite. The good agreement between phase diagram section predictions and the observations suggest that high

  15. Fore-arc basin deformation in the Andaman-Nicobar segment of the Sumatra-Andaman subduction zone: Insight from high-resolution seismic reflection data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moeremans, Raphaële E.; Singh, Satish C.

    2015-08-01

    The Andaman-Nicobar region is the northernmost segment of the Sumatra-Andaman subduction zone and marks the western boundary of the Andaman Sea, which is a complex active back-arc extensional basin. We present the interpretation of a new set of deep seismic reflection data acquired across the Andaman-Nicobar fore-arc basin, from 8°N to 11°N, in order to better understand its structure and evolution, focusing on (1) how obliquity of convergence affects deformation in the fore arc, (2) the nature and role of the Diligent Fault (DF), and (3) the Eastern Margin Fault (EMF). Despite the obliquity of convergence, back thrusting and compression seem to dominate the Andaman-Nicobar fore-arc basin deformation. The DF is primarily a back thrust and corresponds to the Mentawai and West Andaman Fault systems farther in the south, along Sumatra. The DF is expressed in the fore-arc basin as a series of mostly landward verging folds and faults, deforming the early to late Miocene sediments. The DF seems to root from the boundary between the accretionary complex and the continental backstop, where it meets the EMF. The EMF marks the western boundary of the fore-arc basin; it is associated with subsidence and is expressed as a deep piggyback basin, containing recent Pliocene to Pleistocene sediments. The eastern edge of the fore-arc basin is the Invisible Bank (IB), which is thought to be tilted and uplifted continental crust. Subsidence along the EMF and uplift and tilting of the IB seem to be related to different opening phases in the Andaman Sea.

  16. Frictional behaviour of subduction zone fault rocks at low to high sliding velocities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    den Hartog, S. A.; Peach, C. J.; Spiers, C.; Hirose, T.; Tanikawa, W.; Shimamoto, T.

    2010-12-01

    The frictional and/or rheological behaviour of megathrust fault rocks is of key importance for understanding phenomena such as stable versus unstable sliding, post-seismic fault creep and strength recovery between earthquakes. However, many uncertainties remain about the microphysical processes controlling such behaviour. For example, the onset of seismogenic behaviour is often attributed to the dehydration of smectite to form illite. If this were true, illite should show frictional characteristics that allow unstable behaviour. However, previous experiments at room temperature and room humidity have shown only velocity strengthening behaviour for illite. Our aim was to explore the frictional behaviour of (simulated) subduction zone fault gouges under a wide range of conditions, addressing their frictional behaviour in general and the frictional stability of illite-rich gouge in particular. We used samples prepared from crushed and disaggregated illite shale and ODP material from Leg 190, Site 1174B. We performed experiments on water saturated samples with 1) a hydrothermal ring shear machine, 2) a biaxial friction machine and 3) a high velocity rotary shear machine. The hydrothermal ring shear machine allowed simulation of in-situ conditions corresponding to ~10 km depth within a subduction zone, i.e. an effective normal stress of 170 MPa, a pore fluid pressure of 100 MPa, a temperature of 200-300oC and slip velocities of 1-100 ?m/s, reaching shear strains of ~50. We performed the biaxial experiments at an effective normal stress of 5-30 MPa, room temperature and sliding velocities of 0.18-149 ?m/s, attaining shear strains of 50-100. The high velocity experiments were done at a normal stress of 0.5-1.5 MPa, sliding velocities of 1.7x10-4-1.7 m/s and displacements of >10 m. These three types of experiments show several trends. In all experiments up to velocities of 0.17 m/s, strain hardening is observed for illite gouge, with the coefficient of friction increasing from 0.3 at low displacements/strains, to values as high as 0.7 at large shear strains under in-situ conditions. The rate of strain hardening crudely increases with decreasing sample thickness and increasing normal stress. Such behaviour could have important implications for inhibiting shear localization and unstable slip. Biaxial experiments suggest an even higher rate of slip hardening for the ODP materials than for illite gouge. Illite gouge shows velocity strengthening behaviour at all conditions investigated. However, at 300oC and in-situ effective normal stress and pore fluid pressure conditions, velocity weakening and stick-slip occurs, perhaps providing a mechanism for seismogenesis. In addition, at 1.7 m/s, the coefficient of friction decreases compared with lower velocities. The ODP materials show only velocity strengthening behaviour.

  17. Yttrium Behavior in Aqueous Fluid At High Pressures and Temperatures: Implications for Cold Subduction Zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tanis, E. A.; Simon, A. C.; Tschauner, O. D.; Frank, M. R.; Chow, P.; Xiao, Y.; Hanchar, J. M.

    2010-12-01

    Constraining thermodynamically the mass transfer of the REE and HFSE from subducted oceanic crust and metasediments to the mantle wedge is fundamental towards interpreting trace element processes in subduction zone recycling and the plumbing system of arc volcanoes. Experimental studies of trace element partitioning involving aqueous fluids at P-T appropriate for slab-mantle wedge conditions are complicated by the difficulties in retrieving the fluid. In this study, we used a diamond anvil cell (HDAC) and in situ synchrotron X-ray florescence (SXRF; at the HPCAT 16-IDD undulator beamline at the APS) to quantify the solubility of Y, a proxy for the heavy REEs, in acidic aqueous fluid under the P-T conditions of cold subducting slabs. These data extend those of Schmidt et al. (2007) from 2 to 5 GPa. Gold was used as the pressure standard via in situ XRD. A synthetic xenotime (YPO4) crystal was placed close to the inside edge of the gasket and the remaining chamber volume filled with a 2 M HCl aqueous solution. A monochromatic incident beam focused to a 35x50 micron spot was used. Fluorescence from the sample was collected 10 degrees away from the incident beam in a 170 degree backscattering geometry and measured by using a silicon drift detector. We verified that the sample and HDAC geometry eliminates completely any secondary fluorescence from xenotime in the sample chamber; i.e., only Y fluorescence from the fluid was measured. A five-point Y standard calibration was used. The collected spectra of standards and the xenotime experiments were summed, and normalized to beam flux and time. The Y peak was extracted, and analyzed by fitting the background and peak area. The standard calibration demonstrates a linear relationship between concentration and peak area. These data indicate that equilibrium is achieved in approximately 1 hr. The Y concentration in the fluid at run conditions was determined by comparing the measured Y peak area with the standard calibration; we note that the Y standard concentrations bracket the measured Y peak area in the unknown solutions. The measured concentration of Y in the fluid is 415(40) ppm at 310 C at 5 GPa, consistent with Schmidt et al. (2007) who report 495 ppm Y at 300 C and 0.1 GPa. The measured concentration of Y in our experiments at 5 GPa and 450 C is 210(20) ppm, indicating that the concentration of Y in acidic aqueous fluid at 450 C decreases with increasing pressure. These new data constrain the effect of P and T on the mass transfer of HREE via a slab-(metasediment)-evolved aqueous fluid into the overlying mantle wedge and arc plumbing system; hence, the data have important implications for the relationship between HREE partitioning and slab-evolved fluid as a function of the P and T attending mass flux in subduction zones.

  18. Supercritical aqueous fluids in subduction zones carrying carbon and sulfur: oxidants for the mantle wedge?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sverjensky, Dimitri; Manning, Craig

    2014-05-01

    Much speculation surrounds the nature of aqueous fluids in subduction zones. Aqueous fluids likely trigger partial melting in the mantle wedge, influencing the chemistry of the magmas that erupt in island arcs. They also may play a role in transporting elements that could metasomatize and oxidize the overlying mantle wedge, most importantly C, S and Fe. However, full coupling of aqueous fluid chemistry with the silicate, carbonate, C, sulfide and sulfate minerals has remained limited to pressures of 0.5 GPa because of limitations on the HKF aqueous ion equation of state. Recent progress in developing a Deep Earth Water model (Sverjensky et al., 2014), calibrated with new experimental data, now enables a detailed evaluation of the evolution of aqueous fluid chemistry to a pressure of 6 GPa, well into subduction zone conditions. We report aqueous speciation models for eclogitic aqueous fluids constrained by model mineral assemblages that give preliminary indications of the solubilities of elements that could contribute to mass transfer and redox changes in the mantle wedge. For example, at 600 °C and 2.5 GPa, an aqueous fluid in equilibrium with jadeite, paragonite, muscovite, quartz, lawsonite, almandine, talc, magnesite and pyrite at QFM oxidation state with 0.1 molal total Cl, contains 5.5 molal C, 0.04 molal S, and 9 micromolal Fe. The fluid has a pH of 4.7, much greater than the neutral pH of 3.3; the predominant species and molalities are CO2 (5.0), Na+ (0.44), Si(OH)4 (0.36), HCO3- (0.26), H3SiO4- (0.23), CaHCO3+ (0.18), silica dimer (0.10), Cl- (0.09), K+ (0.08), HCOO- (0.06), H2S (0.03). Calculations for model eclogitic fluids at the higher pressures and temperatures of subarc conditions also show that the solubility of C is much greater than either S or Fe at QFM. However, in subarc eclogitic fluids of higher oxidation state (QFM +3 to +4) in equilibrium with hematite, anhydrite, jadeite, kyanite, phlogopite, coesite, lawsonite, almandine-pyrope, and magnesite, the C/S ratio can vary from 0.2 to 3.5 when temperature varies from 650 to 750 °C at 4 GPa. Fe concentrations remain negligible. These results strongly suggest that aqueous subarc eclogitic fluids that evolve to QFM +3 to +4, perhaps by reaction with metamorphosed Fe-oxide-bearing sediments, could transport significant amounts of C and/or S into the mantle wedge environment depending on the temperature. Hotter subduction should favor high C/S fluids, whereas colder subduction should favor low C/S fluids. Aqueous Fe transport is unlikely to be playing a significant role in oxidizing the mantle wedge. Sverjensky, D. A., Harrison, B., and Azzolini, D., 2014. Water in the deep Earth: the dielectric constant and the solubilities of quartz and corundum to 60 kb and 1,200°C. Geochim. et Cosmochim. Acta (in press).

  19. Local structural controls on outer-rise faulting, hydration, and seismicity in the Alaska subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shillington, D. J.; Becel, A.; Nedimovic, M. R.; Kuehn, H.; Webb, S. C.; Li, J.; Keranen, K. M.; Abers, G. A.

    2013-12-01

    We present evidence from marine geophysical data that pre-existing structures in the incoming oceanic plate off the Alaska Peninsula control bending faulting and hydration at the outer rise, which in turn correlate to changes in the abundance of interplate and intermediate-depth earthquakes within the subduction zone. Thus, pre-existing heterogeneities in the downgoing plate can result in significant variations in plate hydration over relatively small distances and may in part explain the observed global diversity of seismicity in subduction zones. ALEUT MCS and bathymetry data reveal large changes in the style and amount of bending in the incoming plate. To the west, outboard of the Shumagin Gap, there is significant bending faulting, with fault offsets up to ~250 m at the seafloor and larger offsets at depth. Faults create rugged topography at the seafloor, and sediment cover is thin (~0.5 km). Most faults have strikes within ~25 degrees of the trench. In contrast, the downgoing plate outboard of the Semidi segment to the east exhibits less dramatic bending faulting, with maximum offsets at the seafloor of 30 m, and the sediment cover is thicker (>1 km). These along-strike changes in faulting correlate with changes in the expected orientation of pre-existing structures in the incoming oceanic crust, which is nearly parallel to the trench near the Shumagin Gap, but highly oblique to the trench near the Semidi segment. This implies that more favorably-oriented pre-existing structures may facilitate bending faulting. P-wave velocity models from wide-angle seismic data reveal that along-strike changes in faulting are accompanied by variations in the velocity structure of the incoming plate. Mantle velocities are reduced by ~0.5 km/s at the outer rise off the Shumagin Gap, where significant bending faulting is observed. We interpret decreased velocities to represent serpentinization of the upper mantle. In contrast, the velocity structure is more variable off the Semidi segment, where the profile obliquely crosses seafloor fabric, but no comparable reduction is observed, implying less hydration at the outer rise. Variations in outer rise faulting and hydration correlate to changes in seismicity at depth. The Shumagin area is characterized by abundant interplate and intermediate depth microseismicity, while the Semidi segment exhibits relatively fewer events in both depth ranges. We suggest that local controls on bending faulting and hydration control the occurrence of both types of microseismicity. The greater deformation and hydration of the plate in the Shumagin Gap may enable intermediate depth earthquakes through dehydration embrittlement and/or the reactivation of bending faults. The paucity of both in the Semidi segment may limit the amount of intermediate depth seismicity. Likewise, the rougher plate surface in the Shumagin may form many small asperities when subducted and thus generate abundant small interplate earthquakes, while the smooth, sedimented surface of the Semidi segment would be associated with more distributed, even coupling and less seismicity when subducted, with fewer small events but capable of rupturing more easily in great (M>8) earthquakes.

  20. Docked Or Accreted Indian Ocean Fracture Ridges Along The Sumatra Subduction Zone Northern Tip

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rangin, C.; Le Pichon, X.; Lin, J.; Maury, T.; Jean Claude, S.

    2004-12-01

    Detailed multibeam mapping coupled with echo sounder data collected offshore the northern tip of Sumatra over the rupture area of the Dec. 26 2004 Mw 9.3 earthquake during the Sumatra aftershock cruise reveal dominant sub-meridian dextral wrenching at the western termination of the Sunda subduction zone. N10°W trending dextral wrench faults with both west and east vergency affect the wedge that overlies in this area the northern prolongation of the NS trending oceanic fracture zone ridges system that absorbs the Indian/Australian plates relative motion between the 90° E and 92°E ridges. Three main N10°W dextral wrenched fault zones with a discrete westward vergency were continuously mapped on the basis of bathymetry and low frequency sounder profiles over 150km across the wedge. The Upper Splay Fault located immediately west of the Inner Ridge (backstop or innermost wedge?) extends from south of Simelue/Nias Island to the vicinity of the Nicobar Islands to the north. The N/S Median Splay Fault within the core of the wedge is the site of the most intense strike-slip deformation evidenced by flower structures and micro-seismicity (OBS). Piggy-back basins are dextrally wrenched as shown by echo sounder data. The westernmost half of the wedge is dominated by NNW elongated pop-up structures with both west and east verging thrusts. Many of these are interpreted by us as oceanic ridges deformation in progress. We propose that the structural fabric of the wedge is due to the interaction of the 90°-92°E oceanic fracture ridges system with the Sumatra backstop and inner wedge. The ridges deformed at depth by NS left-lateral strike-slip faulting due to the distributed Indian/Australian motion dominate the fabric of the hyper- oblique convergent zone. As a consequence, if the ridges are not yet incorporated within the wedge, as we believe, the inter-plate boundary that is well defined by after-slip seismicity near 40-50km depth below the Aceh basin and is known to extend westward with a gentle dip under the upper wedge, does not extend below the outer oceanic fractures system that forms the backbone of the lower wedge. It would have to steepen upward to merge into the MSF in the median part of the wedge. Thus, in our preferred interpretation, the inter-plate boundary does not extend below the lower part of the wedge that is essentially constituted by deformed but still not accreted oceanic fracture volcanic ridges and the steep dip of the decollement east of the MSF below the shallow upper wedge may have played a major role in the generation of the Sumatra Tsunami. Alternatively one would have to assume that the ridges are already incorporated within the wedge which we have at this stage no evidence for. We show that this type of interaction of the submeridian Indian ocean fracture ridges with the subduction zone extends far north into Myanmar and Bangladesh along the NS trending Andaman trench.

  1. Docked Or Accreted Indian Ocean Fracture Ridges Along The Sumatra Subduction Zone Northern Tip

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rangin, C.; Le Pichon, X.; Lin, J.; Maury, T.; Jean Claude, S.

    2007-12-01

    Detailed multibeam mapping coupled with echo sounder data collected offshore the northern tip of Sumatra over the rupture area of the Dec. 26 2004 Mw 9.3 earthquake during the Sumatra aftershock cruise reveal dominant sub-meridian dextral wrenching at the western termination of the Sunda subduction zone. N10°W trending dextral wrench faults with both west and east vergency affect the wedge that overlies in this area the northern prolongation of the NS trending oceanic fracture zone ridges system that absorbs the Indian/Australian plates relative motion between the 90° E and 92°E ridges. Three main N10°W dextral wrenched fault zones with a discrete westward vergency were continuously mapped on the basis of bathymetry and low frequency sounder profiles over 150km across the wedge. The Upper Splay Fault located immediately west of the Inner Ridge (backstop or innermost wedge?) extends from south of Simelue/Nias Island to the vicinity of the Nicobar Islands to the north. The N/S Median Splay Fault within the core of the wedge is the site of the most intense strike-slip deformation evidenced by flower structures and micro-seismicity (OBS). Piggy-back basins are dextrally wrenched as shown by echo sounder data. The westernmost half of the wedge is dominated by NNW elongated pop-up structures with both west and east verging thrusts. Many of these are interpreted by us as oceanic ridges deformation in progress. We propose that the structural fabric of the wedge is due to the interaction of the 90°-92°E oceanic fracture ridges system with the Sumatra backstop and inner wedge. The ridges deformed at depth by NS left-lateral strike-slip faulting due to the distributed Indian/Australian motion dominate the fabric of the hyper- oblique convergent zone. As a consequence, if the ridges are not yet incorporated within the wedge, as we believe, the inter-plate boundary that is well defined by after-slip seismicity near 40-50km depth below the Aceh basin and is known to extend westward with a gentle dip under the upper wedge, does not extend below the outer oceanic fractures system that forms the backbone of the lower wedge. It would have to steepen upward to merge into the MSF in the median part of the wedge. Thus, in our preferred interpretation, the inter-plate boundary does not extend below the lower part of the wedge that is essentially constituted by deformed but still not accreted oceanic fracture volcanic ridges and the steep dip of the decollement east of the MSF below the shallow upper wedge may have played a major role in the generation of the Sumatra Tsunami. Alternatively one would have to assume that the ridges are already incorporated within the wedge which we have at this stage no evidence for. We show that this type of interaction of the submeridian Indian ocean fracture ridges with the subduction zone extends far north into Myanmar and Bangladesh along the NS trending Andaman trench.

  2. Physical properties and Consolidation behavior of sediments from the N. Japan subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Valdez, R. D., II; Lauer, R. M.; Ikari, M.; Kitajima, H.; Saffer, D. M.

    2013-12-01

    Sediment hydraulic properties, consolidation state, and ambient pore pressure development are key parameters that affect fluid migration, deformation, and the slip behavior and mechanical strength of subduction zone megathrusts. In order to better understand the dynamics and mechanisms of large subduction earthquakes, Integrated Oceanic Drilling Program (IODP) Expedition 343, drilled into the toe of the Japan Trench subduction zone in a region of large shallow slip in the M 9.0 Tohoku earthquake, as part of the Japan Trench Fast Drilling Project (J-FAST). Here, we report on two constant rate of strain (CRS) uniaxial consolidation experiments and two triaxial deformation experiments on bedded claystone and clayey mudstone core samples collected from the frontal prism and subducted sediment section cored at Site C0019, 2.5 km landward of the Japan Trench, from depths of 697.18 and 831.45 mbsf. The goals of our experiments were: (1) to define the hydraulic and acoustic properties of sediments that host the subduction megathrust fault that slipped in the M 9.0 Tohoku earthquake; and (2) to constrain in-situ consolidation state and its implications for in-situ stress. The permeability-porosity trends are similar for the two samples, and both exhibit permeability that decreases systematically with increasing effective stress and decreasing porosity, and which varies log-linearly with porosity. Permeabilities of material from the frontal prism decrease from 5×10-18 m2 at 5 MPa effective stress, to 3.0×10-19 m2 at 70 MPa, and porosities decrease from 51% to 29%, while permeabilities of the subducted sediment sample decrease from 5×10-18 m2 at 5 MPa to 3.6×10-19 m2 at 90 MPa, and porosities decrease from 49% to 36%. In-situ permeabilities for the prism and underthrust sediment samples, estimated using laboratory defined permeability-porosity relationships, are 4.9×10-18 m2 and 3.7×10-18 m2, respectively. Elastic wavespeeds increase systematically with increasing effective stress. P-wave velocities (Vp) in the frontal prism sample increase from 2.1 km/s at 8 MPa to 2.7 km/s at 55 MPa effective stress, and velocities in the underthrust sediment sample increase from 2.3 km/s at 6 MPa to 3.0 km/s at 76.5 MPa. Estimated in-situ Vp for the frontal prism and underthrust sediment sample are 2.1 km/s and 2.4 km/s, respectively. This is slightly higher than both the logging while drilling (LWD) measurements and shipboard velocity measurements on discrete samples. We also estimated pre-consolidation pressures (Pc) for each sample using the work-stress method. Comparing Pc with the present day in-situ vertical stress calculated from shipboard bulk density data, we find that both samples are severely overconsolidated. We report this in terms of overconsolidation ratio (OCR), defined as the ratio of Pc to the in-situ stress expected for the case of normal consolidation. Values of OCR for the prism and underthrust samples are 3.95 and 4.28, respectively. This overconsolidation is broadly consistent with fully drained (non-overpressured) conditions, and may reflect uplift and unroofing of the sediments following peak burial greater than their current depth, a significant contribution from lateral tectonic stresses leading to an effective stress far greater than expected for the case of uniaxial burial, or cementation that leads to apparent overconsolidation.

  3. Seismic?wave attenuation determined from tectonic tremor in multiple subduction zones

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Yabe, Suguru; Baltay, Annemarie S.; Ide, Satoshi; Beroza, Gregory C.

    2014-01-01

    Tectonic tremor provides a new source of observations that can be used to constrain the seismic attenuation parameter for ground?motion prediction and hazard mapping. Traditionally, recorded earthquakes of magnitude ?3–8 are used to develop ground?motion prediction equations; however, typical earthquake records may be sparse in areas of high hazard. In this study, we constrain the distance decay of seismic waves using measurements of the amplitude decay of tectonic tremor, which is plentiful in some regions. Tectonic tremor occurs in the frequency band of interest for ground?motion prediction (i.e., ?2–8??Hz) and is located on the subducting plate interface, at the lower boundary of where future large earthquakes are expected. We empirically fit the distance decay of peak ground velocity from tremor to determine the attenuation parameter in four subduction zones: Nankai, Japan; Cascadia, United States–Canada; Jalisco, Mexico; and southern Chile. With the large amount of data available from tremor, we show that in the upper plate, the lower crust is less attenuating than the upper crust. We apply the same analysis to intraslab events in Nankai and show the possibility that waves traveling from deeper intraslab events experience more attenuation than those from the shallower tremor due to ray paths that pass through the subducting and highly attenuating oceanic crust. This suggests that high pore?fluid pressure is present in the tremor source region. These differences imply that the attenuation parameter determined from intraslab earthquakes may underestimate ground motion for future large earthquakes on the plate interface.

  4. Shallow seismicity patterns in the northwestern section of the Mexico Subduction Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abbott, Elizabeth R.; Brudzinski, Michael R.

    2015-11-01

    This study characterizes subduction related seismicity with local deployments along the northwestern section of the Mexico Subduction Zone where 4 portions of the plate interface have ruptured in 1973, 1985, 1995, and 2003. It has been proposed that the subducted boundary between the Cocos and Rivera plates occurs beneath this region, as indicated by inland volcanic activity, a gap in tectonic tremor, and the Manzanillo Trough and Colima Graben, which are depressions thought to be associated with the splitting of the two plates after subduction. Data from 50 broadband stations that comprised the MARS seismic array, deployed from January 2006 to June 2007, were processed with the software program Antelope and its generalized source location algorithm, genloc, to detect and locate earthquakes within the network. Slab surface depth contours from the resulting catalog indicate a change in subduction trajectory between the Rivera and Cocos plates. The earthquake locations are spatially anti-correlated with tectonic tremor, supporting the idea that they represent different types of fault slip. Hypocentral patterns also reveal areas of more intense seismic activity (clusters) that appear to be associated with the 2003 and 1973 megathrust rupture regions. Seismicity concentrated inland of the 2003 rupture is consistent with slip on a shallowly dipping trajectory for the Rivera plate interface as opposed to crustal faulting in the overriding North American plate. A prominent cluster of seismicity within the suspected 1973 rupture zone appears to be a commonly active portion of the megathrust as it has been active during three previous deployments. We support these interpretations by determining focal mechanisms and detailed relocations of the largest events within the 1973 and inland 2003 clusters, which indicate primarily thrust mechanisms near the plate interface.

  5. Nazca-South America Subduction Zone Reflectivity from P'P' Precursors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gu, Y. J.; Schultz, R.

    2012-12-01

    Much of what is known about mantle owes to the interpretation of its reflectivity structure. On the global scale mantle stratifications have been attributed to mineralogical phase changes of olivine; two widely observed examples are the 410 and 660 km discontinuities. Among the various seismological tools, results from longer-period SS/PP precursors and high frequency receiver functions are routinely compared to increase the confidence of the recovered mantle stratifications. The former are lower frequency approaches with complex Fresnel zones, while constraints on receiver distribution hinder analysis in oceanic regions for the latter. P'P' precursors are a promising high frequency alternative, capable of resolving small-scale structures (resolution of ~5 km vertically, 200 km laterally) in the mantle, owing to its short-period nature (~1Hz), shallow angle of incidence and nearly symmetric Fresnel zone. However, P'P' precursors are known for several complications: phase triplication (PKiKPPKiKP, PKIKPPKIKP, PKPPKPab and PKPPKPbc) and the maximum-phase Fresnel zones result in strong scattering and asymmetric arrivals. Much of these concerns are alleviated through revamped processing techniques involving stacking, deconvolution, Radon transform and migration. We utilize P'P' precursors to constrain the mantle structure and layering beneath the Nazca-South America subduction zone. Our migration profiles reveal both olivine (e.g., 410, 520, 660) and garnet related transitions in the mantle, with constraints on the sharpness of these transitions. Observations of a depressed 660 are attributed to thermal variations, showing the spatial extent of the impinging Nazca slab. Prominent 520 arrivals near subducted slab material suggest this transition is sharpened to a thickness resonant with P'P' (~10km). The possibility of chemical heterogeneity is evidenced near the top of the mantle transition zone through complicated 410 amplitudes. The existence, depth, sharpness and strength of these reflectors/discontinuities offer new constraints on the dynamics and mineralogy of the mantle.

  6. Repeating earthquakes on the Chile subduction zone following the Maule 2010 M 8.8 earthquake

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rietbrock, A.; Jenkins, J.; Tilmann, F. J.; Hicks, S. P.; Palo, M.

    2013-12-01

    We investigate repeating earthquakes (REs) on the Chile subduction zone, in the first 9 months following the Maule 2010 M 8.8 earthquake. Using the aftershock catalogue of approximately 30,000 events (Rietbrock et al., 2012) and the data from the International Maule Aftershock Dataset (IMAD), we identify 1550 clusters of small magnitude (Mw ~1.5-3) events showing similar waveforms (cross-correlation coefficients>0.9). Clusters are found from the surface to depths of ~60km, indicating the generation of RE on pre-existing crustal faults and slab interface. A particularly dense band of clustered seismicity runs NE-SW along the length of Chile at 37-47km depth on the slab/continent interface, apparently defining the limit of plate coupling (Rietbrock et al, 2012; Lange et al., 2012). Relocation of deep clusters, via the double difference method (hypoDD), reveal that they lie within a region of increased fluid content (interpreted from high Vp/Vs ratio (Hicks et al., 2012)), and define streaks of seismicity orientated down-dip. Moment tensor analysis of selected aftershocks shows that larger events M 4-5 are located at the interface or deeper in the slab (5-8km beneath the slab interface) and show thrust motion along the direction of the plate interface. REs, in contrast, show predominantly strike-slip motion and are located close to the interface. Temporal analysis also shows non-constant recurrence times of events within clusters, which we interpret as an indication that the seismicity in the deep clusters are driven by pulses of after-slip from the Maule 2010 event together with episodic fluid migration. We introduce a model of Mixed Mode Fault Slip (MMFS) to explain our observations, where aseismic sliding of trench sediments in the subduction channel build up stress on fragments of ocean crust, causing them to repeatedly fracture and generate repeating earthquakes.

  7. Waveform tomography of Nankai subduction zone: Imaging of a mega-splay fault system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kamei, R.; Pratt, R. G.; Tsuji, T.

    2011-12-01

    We apply Frequency-domain Waveform Tomography to form quantitative, high-resolution P-wave velocity images of a megasplay fault system within the central Nankai subduction zone offshore of southwest Japan using controlled source Ocean Bottom Seismometer (OBS) data originally acquired in 2004. Waveform Tomography attempts to fit recorded waveforms rather than just first arrivals, and thus generates a high-resolution velocity structure in a scale of a wavelength, while the conventional Traveltime Tomogrpahy is limited to the scale of the Fresnel zone. The frequency-domain implementation facilitates a multi-scale approach, in which initial results are matlabgenerated using low frequencies (starting at 2.25 Hz), and higher frequencies (up to 8.5 Hz) are introduced progressively. These results also yield significant improvements in the data fit to the OBS data, in comparison with those obtained from Traveltime Tomography conducted by Nakanishi et al., 2008. A remarkable agreement of apparent lithological boundaries from Waveform Tomography with corresponding reflections on seismic migration images (Moore et al., 2009, Park et al., 2010) provides further confidence in the validity of the results. The megasplay fault is evident on the final image as a sharp velocity discontinuity, delineating the upper surface of a velocity reduction of nearly 1 km/s with respect to the regional 1D velocity trend. The megasplay fault can be traced continuously throughout the entire system, from a nearly horizontal section at the landward extent, moving seaward through to a steeper angle penetrating the old accretionary prisms, with several additional splays appearing to branch in the shallow subsurface. The Waveform Tomography images further confirms a connection zone 1.5 km thick between two potentially over-pressured low velocity zones in the system, suggesting that pore-fluids may be transported from the inner wedge, to the transition zone and to the surface through fluid conduits associated with the megasplay fault system.

  8. Coseismic and postseismic stress rotations due to great subduction zone earthquakes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hardebeck, Jeanne L.

    2012-01-01

    The three largest recent great subduction zone earthquakes (2011 M9.0 Tohoku, Japan; 2010 M8.8 Maule, Chile; and 2004 M9.2 Sumatra-Andaman) exhibit similar coseismic rotations of the principal stress axes. Prior to each mainshock, the maximum compressive stress axis was shallowly plunging, while immediately after the mainshock, both the maximum and minimum compressive stress axes plunge at ~45°. Dipping faults can be oriented for either reverse or normal faulting in this post-mainshock stress field, depending on their dip, explaining the observed normal-faulting aftershocks without requiring a complete reversal of the stress field. The significant stress rotations imply near-complete stress drop in the mainshocks, with >80% of the pre-mainshock stress relieved in the Tohoku and Maule earthquakes and in the northern part of the Sumatra-Andaman rupture. The southern part of the Sumatra-Andaman rupture relieved ~60% of the pre-mainshock stress. The stress axes rotated back rapidly in the months following the Tohoku and Maule mainshocks, and similarly in the southern part of the Sumatra-Andaman rupture. A rapid postseismic rotation is possible because the near-complete stress drop leaves very little “background” stress at the beginning of the postseismic reloading. In contrast, there has been little or no postseismic rotation in the northern part of the Sumatra-Andaman rupture over the 7 years since the mainshock. All M ?8.0 subduction earthquakes since 1990 with an adequate number of pre- and post-mainshock events were evaluated, and not all show similar coseismic stress rotations. Deeper earthquakes exhibit smaller coseismic stress rotations, likely due to increasing deviatoric stress with depth.

  9. Elastic thickness structure of the Andaman subduction zone: Implications for convergence of the Ninetyeast Ridge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ratheesh Kumar, R. T.; Windley, B. F.; Rajesh, V. J.; Santosh, M.

    2013-12-01

    We use the Bouguer coherence (Morlet isostatic response function) technique to compute the spatial variation of effective elastic thickness (Te) of the Andaman subduction zone. The recovered Te map resolves regional-scale features that correlate well with known surface structures of the subducting Indian plate and the overriding Burma plate. The major structure on the India plate, the Ninetyeast Ridge (NER), exhibits a weak mechanical strength, which is consistent with the expected signature of an oceanic ridge of hotspot origin. However, a markedly low strength (0 < Te < 3 km) in that region, where the NER is close to the Andaman trench (north of 10°N), receives our main attention in this study. The subduction geometry derived from the Bouguer gravity forward modeling suggests that the NER has indented beneath the Andaman arc. We infer that the bending stresses of the viscous plate, which were reinforced within the subducting oceanic plate as a result of the partial subduction of the NER buoyant load, have reduced the lithospheric strength. The correlation, Te < Ts (seismogenic thickness) reveals that the upper crust is actively deforming beneath the frontal arc Andaman region. The occurrence of normal-fault earthquakes in the frontal arc, low Te zone, is indicative of structural heterogeneities within the subducting plate. The fact that the NER along with its buoyant root is subducting under the Andaman region is inhibiting the subduction processes, as suggested by the changes in trench line, interrupted back-arc volcanism, variation in seismicity mechanism, slow subduction, etc. The low Te and thinned crustal structure of the Andaman back-arc basin are attributed to a thermomechanically weakened lithosphere. The present study reveals that the ongoing back-arc spreading and strike-slip motion along the West Andaman Fault coupled with the ridge subduction exerts an important control on the frequency and magnitude of seismicity in the Andaman region.

  10. Estimation of slip rate and fault displacement during shallow earthquake rupture in the Nankai subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamada, Yohei; Sakaguchi, Arito; Tanikawa, Wataru; Yamaguchi, Asuka; Kameda, Jun; Kimura, Gaku

    2015-12-01

    Enormous earthquakes repeatedly occur in subduction zones, and the slips along megathrusts, in particular those propagating to the toe of the forearc wedge, generate ruinous tsunamis. Quantitative evaluation of slip parameters (i.e., slip velocity, rise time and slip distance) of past slip events at shallow, tsunamigenic part of the fault is critical to characterize such earthquakes. Here, we attempt to quantify these parameters of slips that may have occurred along the shallow megasplay fault and the plate boundary décollement in the Nankai Trough, off southwest Japan. We apply a kinetic modeling to vitrinite reflectance profiles on the two fault rock samples obtained from Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP). This approach constitutes two calculation procedures: heat generation and numerical profile fitting of vitrinite reflectance data. For the purpose of obtaining optimal slip parameters, residue calculation is implemented to estimate fitting accuracy. As the result, the measured distribution of vitrinite reflectance is reasonably fitted with heat generation rate and slip duration ( t r ) of 16,600 J/s/m2 and 6,250 s, respectively, for the megasplay and 23,200 J/s/m2 and 2,350 s, respectively, for the frontal décollement, implying slow and long-term slips. The estimated slip parameters are then compared with previous reports. The maximum temperature, Tmax, for the Nankai megasplay fault is consistent with the temperature constraint suggested by a previous work. Slow slip velocity, long-term rise time, and large displacement are recognized in these fault zones (both of the megasplay, the frontal décollement). These parameters are longer and slower than typical coseismic slip, but are rather consistent with rapid afterslip.

  11. Velocity and Density Models Incorporating the Cascadia Subduction Zone for 3D Earthquake Ground Motion Simulations

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stephenson, William J.

    2007-01-01

    INTRODUCTION In support of earthquake hazards and ground motion studies in the Pacific Northwest, three-dimensional P- and S-wave velocity (3D Vp and Vs) and density (3D rho) models incorporating the Cascadia subduction zone have been developed for the region encompassed from about 40.2?N to 50?N latitude, and from about -122?W to -129?W longitude. The model volume includes elevations from 0 km to 60 km (elevation is opposite of depth in model coordinates). Stephenson and Frankel (2003) presented preliminary ground motion simulations valid up to 0.1 Hz using an earlier version of these models. The version of the model volume described here includes more structural and geophysical detail, particularly in the Puget Lowland as required for scenario earthquake simulations in the development of the Seattle Urban Hazards Maps (Frankel and others, 2007). Olsen and others (in press) used the model volume discussed here to perform a Cascadia simulation up to 0.5 Hz using a Sumatra-Andaman Islands rupture history. As research from the EarthScope Program (http://www.earthscope.org) is published, a wealth of important detail can be added to these model volumes, particularly to depths of the upper-mantle. However, at the time of development for this model version, no EarthScope-specific results were incorporated. This report is intended to be a reference for colleagues and associates who have used or are planning to use this preliminary model in their research. To this end, it is intended that these models will be considered a beginning template for a community velocity model of the Cascadia region as more data and results become available.

  12. On the feedback between forearc morphotectonics and megathrust earthquakes in subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosenau, M.; Oncken, O.

    2008-12-01

    An increasing number of observations suggest an intrinsic relationship between short- and long-term deformation processes in subduction zones. These include the global correlation between megathrust earthquake slip patterns with morphotectonic forearc features, the historical predominance of giant earthquakes (M > 9) along accretionary margins and the occurrence of (slow and shallow) tsunami earthquakes along erosive margins. To gain insight into the interplay between seismogenesis and tectonics in subduction settings we have developed a new modeling technique which joins analog and elastic dislocation approaches. Using elastoplastic wedges overlying a rate- and state-dependent interface, we demonstrate how analog earthquakes drive permanent wedge deformation consistent with the dynamic Coulomb wedge theory and how wedge deformation in turn controls basal "seismicity". During an experimental run, elastoplastic wedges evolve from those comparable to accretionary margins, characterized by plastic wedge shortening, to those mimicking erosive margins, characterized by minor plastic deformation. Permanent shortening localizes at the periphery of the "seismogenic" zone leading to a "morphotectonic" segmentation of the upper plate. Along with the evolving segmentation of the wedge, the magnitude- frequency relationship and recurrence distribution of analog earthquakes develop towards more periodic events of similar size (i.e. characteristic earthquakes). From the experiments we infer a positive feedback between short- and long-term deformation processes which tends to stabilize the spatiotemporal patterns of elastoplastic deformation in subduction settings. We suggest (1) that forearc anatomy reflects the distribution of seismic and aseismic slip at depth, (2) that morphotectonic segmentation assists the occurrence of more characteristic earthquakes, (3) that postseismic near-trench shortening relaxes coseismic compression by megathrust earthquakes and thus reduces tsunami earthquake risk in accretionary settings and (4) that permanent coastal shortening allows adjacent segments to fail more synchronized thus triggering much greater earthquakes in accretionary settings.

  13. Earthquake swarm activity in the Oaxaca segment of Middle American Subduction Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brudzinski, M. R.; Cabral, E.; Arciniega-Ceballos, A.

    2013-05-01

    An outstanding question in geophysics is the degree to which the newly discovered family of slow fault slip behaviors is related to more traditional earthquakes, especially since theoretical predictions indicate slip in the deeper transitional zone promotes failure in the shallower seismogenic zone. The Oaxacan segment of the Middle American Subduction zone is a natural region to pursue detailed studies of the spectrum of fault slip due to the unusually shallow subduction angle and short trench-to-coast distances that bring broad portions of the seismogenic and transitional zones of the plate interface inland. A deployment of broadband seismometers in this region has improved the network coverage to ~70 km station spacing since 2006, providing new opportunities to investigate smaller seismic phenomena. While characterization of tectonic tremor has been a prominent focus of this deployment, the improved network has also revealed productive earthquake swarms, whose sustained periods of similar magnitude earthquakes are also thought to be driven by slow slip. We identify a particularly productive earthquake swarm in July 2006 (~600 similar earthquakes detected), which occurred during a week-long episode of tectonic tremor and geodetically detected slow slip. Using a multi-station "template matching" waveform cross correlation technique, we have been able to detect and locate swarm earthquakes several orders of magnitude smaller than that of traditional processing, particularly during periods of increased background activity, because the detector is finely tuned to events with similar hypocentral location and focal mechanism. When we scan for repeats of the event families detected in the July 2006 sequence throughout the 6+ years since, we find these families were also activated during several other slow slip episodes, which indicates a link between slow slip in the transition zone and earthquakes at the downdip end of the seismogenic portion of the megathrust.

  14. Non-Volcanic Tremor along the Oaxaca segment of the Middle America Subduction Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hinojohsa-Prieto, H. R.; Brudzinski, M. R.; Cabral-Cano, E.; Arciniega-Ceballos, A.; Diaz-Molina, O.; Demets, D.

    2008-12-01

    Convergent plate boundaries generate great earthquakes when tectonic stresses accumulate on the plate interface. Down-dip from the seismogenic zone where increasing temperatures, pressure and dehydration affect frictional behavior, episodic tremor and slip (ETS) has been shown to occur in the transitional zone. The Oaxaca subduction zone is an ideal area for detailed ETS studies as rapid convergent rates, shallow subduction, and short trench-to-coast distances bring the seismogenic and transition zones of the plate interface up to 250 km inland. Previously analyzed slow slip events occur over large areas in southern Mexico, and may even extend up-dip into the seismogenic zone, potentially playing a role in future megathrust earthquakes. A new seismic deployment consisting of 7 broadband seismometers geographically dispersed inland along the Oaxaca segment provide the means to examine non-volcanic tremor (NVT) signals in detail for the first time. In this study, we investigate the spatial and temporal distribution of NVT in this region, including the duration, initiation and termination points, migration rates and directionality, and recurrence. We analyze NVT signals with a semi-automated process for identifying prominent bursts, and analyst-refined relative arrival times are inverted for source locations. We find week-long NVT episodes with location clusters that migrate at typical speeds, but NVT episodes occur much more frequently than month- long GPS-detectable slow slip episodes. We also observe a clear spatial relationship indicating a downward progression of deformation with the subducting plate from megathrust earthquakes to microseismicity to slow slip events to NVT to intraplate seismicity.

  15. Subduction zone locking, strain partitioning, intraplate deformation and their implications to Seismic Hazards in South America

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Galgana, G. A.; Mahdyiar, M.; Shen-Tu, B.; Pontbriand, C. W.; Klein, E.; Wang, F.; Shabestari, K.; Yang, W.

    2014-12-01

    We analyze active crustal deformation in South America (SA) using published GPS observations and historic seismicity along the Nazca Trench and the active Ecuador-Colombia-Venezuela Plate boundary Zone. GPS-constrained kinematisc models that incorporate block and continuum techniques are used to assess patterns of regional tectonic deformation and its implications to seismic potential. We determine interplate coupling distributions, fault slip-rates, and intraplate crustal strain rates in combination with historic earthquakes within 40 seismic zones crust to provide moment rate constraints. Along the Nazca subduction zone, we resolve a series of highly coupled patches, interpreted as high-friction producing "asperities" beneath the coasts of Ecuador, Peru and Chile. These include areas responsible for the 2010 Mw 8.8 Maule Earthquake and the 2014 Mw 8.2 Iquique Earthquake. Predicted tectonic block motions and fault slip rates reveal that the northern part of South America deforms rapidly, with crustal fault slip rates as much as ~20 mm/a. Fault slip and locking patterns reveal that the Oca Ancón-Pilar-Boconó fault system plays a key role in absorbing most of the complex eastward and southward convergence patterns in northeastern Colombia and Venezuela, while the near-parallel system of faults in eastern Colombia and Ecuador absorb part of the transpressional motion due to the ~55 mm/a Nazca-SA plate convergence. These kinematic models, in combination with historic seismicity rates, provide moment deficit rates that reveal regions with high seismic potential, such as coastal Ecuador, Bucaramanga, Arica and Antofagasta. We eventually use the combined information from moment rates and fault coupling patterns to further constrain stochastic seismic hazard models of the region by implementing realistic trench rupture scenarios (see Mahdyiar et al., this volume).

  16. Time-Dependent Inner Core Structures Examined by Repeating Earthquakes in the Southwest Pacific Subduction Zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, W. C.

    2014-12-01

    Time-dependent inner core structure is interpreted as differential rotation of the Earth's inner core. This inference is made on the basis of variations deviated from an isotropic and homogeneous inner core structure and the amount of velocity perturbations progressively evolving as a function of calendar time. Most compelling evidences for inner core rotation come from the inner core structures beneath Colombia and Venezuela, characterized by strong anisotropy and lateral variation, for the South Sandwich Islands earthquakes recorded by College (COL) and other seismic stations in Alaska. Repeating earthquakes with highly similar waveforms can minimize the potential artifacts due to inter-event separation and unknown short-scale mantle heterogeneities, and can acquire robust measurement of time shift due to temporal change of inner core structures. Moderate repeating earthquake sequences (RES) in the Tonga-Kermadec-Vanuatu in the southwest Pacific subduction zones are studied over a 20-year time window between 1990 and 2009. I select 13 RES consisting of two or three events with time separation of 2 - 14.4 years and analyze the PKiKP-PKPdf, PKPbc-PKPdf, and PKPab-PKPdf phase pairs recorded by the European, African, and central Asian stations sampling the eastern hemisphere of the inner core. I measure the double differential time of the phase pairs using waveform cross-correlation. Majority of the double differential time measurements within ±50 millisecond can largely be explained by the time shift due to inter-event distance on the order of hundreds of meters or less and null change of the PKPdf phase. These observations indicate inner core structures in the eastern hemisphere are uniform and probably insensitive to motion of the inner core.

  17. Automatic picking and earthquake relocation for the Antilles subduction zone (1972-2013)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Massin, F.; Amorèse, D.; Bengoubou-Valerius, M.; Bernard, M.

    2013-12-01

    Locations for earthquake recorded in the Antilles subduction zone are processed separately by regional observatories and ISC. There is no earthquake location catalog available compiling all available first arrival data. We aim to produce a best complete earthquake catalog by merging all available first arrival data for better constrains on earthquake locations. ISC provides the first arrival data of 29243 earthquakes (magnitude range from 1.4 to 6.4) recorded by PRSN (Porto Rico), SRC (British West Indies), and form FUNVISIS (Venezuela). IPGP provided the first arrival data of 68718 earthquakes (magnitude from 0.1 to 7.5) recorded by OVSG (Guadeloupe, 53226 earthquakes since 1981) and by OVSM (Martinique, 29931 earthquakes since 1972). IPGP also provides the accelerometer waveform data of the GIS-RAP network in the Antilles. The final catalog contains 84979 earthquakes between 1972 and 2013, 24528 of which we compiled additional data. We achieved automatic picking using the Component Energy Correlation Method. The CECM provide high precision phase detection, a realistic estimation of picking error and realistic weights that can be used with manual pick weights. The CECM add an average of 3 P-waves and 2 S-waves arrivals to 3846 earthquakes recoded by the GIS-RAP network since 2002. Cluster analysis, earthquake local tomography and relative locations are to be applied in order to image active faulting and migration of seismicity. This will help to understand seismic coupling in the seismogenic zone as well as triggering mechanisms of intermediate depth seismicity like fluid migration beneath the volcanic arc.

  18. Tectonic tremor locations along the western Mexico subduction zone using stacked waveforms of similar events

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schlanser, K. M.; Brudzinski, M. R.; Holtkamp, S. G.; Shelly, D. R.

    2011-12-01

    Tectonic (non-volcanic) tremor is difficult to locate due to its emergent nature, but critical to assess what impact it has on the plate interface slip budget. Tectonic tremor has been observed in Jalisco, Colima, and Michoacán regions of southern Mexico using the MARS seismic network. A semi-automated approach in which analyst-refined relative arrival times are inverted for source locations using a 1-D velocity model has previously produced hundreds of source locations. The results found tectonic tremor shift from near the 50 km contour to the 20 km contour going from east to west, with the latter epicenters hugging the coastline. There is little room between the tectonic tremor and the seismogenic zone for a wide intervening slow slip region like what is seen in other region of the Mexican subduction zone, suggesting a potentially different source process than tremor in other regions. This study seeks to refine the tremor source locations by stacking families of similar events to enhance the signal to noise ratio and bring out clear P- and S-wave arrivals even for low amplitude sources at noisier stations. Well-defined tremor bursts within the Jalisco, Colima, and Michoacán region from previous results are being used to define 6 s template waveforms that are matched to similar waveforms through cross-correlation over the entire duration of recording. After stacking the similar events, the clarified arrival times will be used to refine the source locations. Particular attention will be paid to whether the tremor families form a dipping linear feature consistent with the plate interface and if tremor associated with the Rivera plate is as shallow (~20km) as it appears from previous results.

  19. South Sandwich: The Forgotten Subduction Zone and Tsunami Hazard in the South Atlantic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Okal, E. A.; Hartnady, C. J.

    2008-12-01

    While no large interplate thrust earthquakes are known at the South Sandwich subduction zone, historical catalogues include a number of earthquakes with reported magnitudes of 7 or more. We present a detailed seismological study of the largest one (27 June 1929; M (G&R) = 8.3). The earthquake relocates 80 km North of the Northwestern corner of the arc. Its mechanism, inverted using the PDFM method, features normal faulting on a steeply dipping fault plane (phi, delta, lambda = 71, 70, 272 deg.). The seismic moment, 1.7 10**28 dyn*cm, supports Gutenberg and Richter's estimate, and is 28 times the largest shallow CMT in the region. The 1929 event is interpreted as representing a lateral tear in the South Atlantic plate, comparable to similar earthquakes in Samoa and Loyalty, deemed "STEP faults" by Gover and Wortel [2005]. Hydrodynamic simulations using the MOST method [Titov and Synolakis, 1997] suggest deep-water tsunami amplitudes reaching 30 cm off the coast of Brazil, where it should have had observable run-up, and 20 cm along the Gulf of Guinea (Ivory Coast, Ghana). We also simulate a number of potential sources obtained by assigning the 1929 moment to the geometries of other known earthquakes in the region, namely outer-rise normal faulting events at the center of the arc and its southern extremity, and an interplate thrust fault at the Southern corner, where the youngest lithosphere is subducted. A common feature of these models is the strong focusing of tsunami waves by the SAR, the SWIOR, and the Agulhas Rise, resulting in amplitudes always enhanced in Ghana, Southern Mozambique and certain parts of the coast of South Africa. This study documents the potential tsunami hazard to South Atlantic shorelines from earthquakes in this region, principally normal faulting events.

  20. The South Sandwich "Forgotten" Subduction Zone and Tsunami Hazard in the South Atlantic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Okal, E. A.; Hartnady, C. J. H.; Synolakis, C. E.

    2009-04-01

    While no large interplate thrust earthquakes are know at the "forgotten" South Sandwich subduction zone, historical catalogues include a number of events with reported magnitudes 7 or more. A detailed seismological study of the largest event (27 June 1929; M (G&R) = 8.3) is presented. The earthquake relocates 80 km North of the Northwestern corner of the arc and its mechanism, inverted using the PDFM method, features normal faulting on a steeply dipping fault plane (phi, delta, lambda = 71, 70, 272 deg. respectively). The seismic moment of 1.7*10**28 dyn*cm supports Gutenberg and Richter's estimate, and is 28 times the largest shallow CMT in the region. This event is interpreted as representing a lateral tear in the South Atlantic plate, comparable to similar earthquakes in Samoa and Loyalty, deemed "STEP faults" by Gover and Wortel [2005]. Hydrodynamic simulations were performed using the MOST method [Titov and Synolakis, 1997]. Computed deep-water tsunami amplitudes of 30cm and 20cm were found off the coast of Brazil and along the Gulf of Guinea (Ivory Coast, Ghana) respectively. The 1929 moment was assigned to the geometries of other know earthquakes in the region, namely outer-rise normal faulting events at the center of the arc and its southern extremity, and an interplate thrust fault at the Southern corner, where the youngest lithosphere is subducted. Tsunami hydrodynamic simulation of these scenarios revealed strong focusing of tsunami wave energy by the SAR, the SWIOR and the Agulhas Rise, in Ghana, Southern Mozambique and certain parts of the coast of South Africa. This study documents the potential tsunami hazard to South Atlantic shorelines from earthquakes in this region, principally normal faulting events.

  1. Gravity anomalies, crustal structure, and seismicity at subduction zones: 1. Seafloor roughness and subducting relief

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bassett, Dan; Watts, Anthony B.

    2015-05-01

    An ensemble averaging technique is used to remove the long-wavelength topography and gravity field from subduction zones. >200 residual bathymetric and gravimetric anomalies are interpreted within fore arcs, many of which are attributed to the tectonic structure of the subducting plate. The residual-gravimetric expression of subducting fracture zones extends >200 km landward of the trench axis. The bathymetric expression of subducting seamounts with height ?1 km and area ?500 km2 (N=36), and aseismic ridges (N>10), is largest near the trench (within 70 km) and above shallow subducting slab depths (SLAB1.0 <17 km). Subducting seamounts are similar in wavelength, amplitude, and morphology to unsubducted seamounts. Morphology, spatial distributions, and reduced levels of seismicity are considered inconsistent with mechanical models proposing wholesale decapitation, and the association of subducting seamounts with large-earthquakes. Subducting aseismic ridges are associated with uplift and steepening of the outer fore arc, a gradual reduction in residual bathymetric expression across the inner fore arc, and a local increase in the width and elevation of the volcanic-arc/orogen. These contrasting expressions reflect the influence of margin-normal variations in rigidity on where and how the upper plate deforms, both to accommodate subducting relief and in response to stresses transmitted across the plate interface. The outer fore arc and arc have lower rigidity due to fracturing and thermal weakening, respectively. Similar associations with complex earthquakes and fault creep suggest aseismic ridge subduction may also be accommodated by the development and evolution of a broad fracture network, the geometrical strength of which may exceed the locking strength of a smooth fault.

  2. Depth variation of upper mantle seismic discontinuities in the region of the Tonga subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, J.; Wiens, D. A.; Emry, E.; Wei, S. S.; Cai, C.; Webb, S. C.; Menke, W. H.; Zha, Y.; Chen, Y. J.

    2013-12-01

    In order to study the mantle transition zone structure near the Tonga subduction zone in the southwestern Pacific, we analyzed receiver functions from teleseismic P waves recorded by both island broadband seismic stations and ocean bottom seismographs deployed as part of the RIDGE2000 Lau Basin Imaging Project. First, we used an iterative deconvolution in the time domain to obtain the receiver functions [Ammon, 1999]. The orientations of the OBS's were derived from a combination of the results of ambient noise correlation and Rayleigh-Wave polarization methods. Then a 3-D stacking approach [T. J. Owens, 2000] is adopted to stack those receiver functions for all station-event pairs. We binned the study area and stacked the traces within a certain radius from each bin at depths with a 10-km increment. The Tonga slab subducts with the fastest known convergence velocity, and the tectonics of this region are very complex. A flat slab with scattered seismicity is found to the west of the main Tonga slab in tomographic models. An elevation of the 410-km and a depression of the 660-km discontinuities are expected at and near the subducting slab since the olivine transitions are perturbed by the cold slab at these depths. From the on-going receiver function study, we are expecting to present detailed structure of the mantle transition zone at this complex plate boundary. Thomas J. Owens, Andrew A. Nyblade, Harold Gurrola, Charles A. Langston. Mantle transition zone structure beneath Tanzania, East Africa. Geophysical research letters, Vol. 27, No.6, Pages 827-830, 2000.

  3. Dynamic models for metamorphic core complex formation and scaling: The role of unchannelized collapse of thickened continental crust

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bendick, Rebecca; Baldwin, Julia

    2009-11-01

    Metamorphic core complexes at collisions between cratons and softer terranes, such as in the northern North American Cordillera, share a set of characteristic features including spatial and temporal association of ductile mid-crustal deformation with brittle normal faulting, spatial coincidence with prior crustal thickening, characteristic spatial scaling and limited duration and extent of deformation. These properties are reproduced in numerical solutions for gravity-driven collapse of a viscous crustal region under conditions where vertical stress is continuous through thickened lithosphere (rigid, deformable conditions). Such solutions allow inversion for effective mechanical properties and crustal geometry from direct observations of aspect ratio and exhumation velocity; in the northern Rockies, core complex geometry is consistent with a twofold decrease in viscosity of the thickened Cordilleran crustal welt.

  4. Relative impact of mantle densification and eclogitization of slabs on subduction dynamics: A numerical thermodynamic/thermokinematic investigation of metamorphic density evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duesterhoeft, Erik; Quinteros, Javier; Oberhänsli, Roland; Bousquet, Romain; de Capitani, Christian

    2014-12-01

    Understanding the relationships between density and spatio-thermal variations at convergent plate boundaries is important for deciphering the present-day dynamics and evolution of subduction zones. In particular, the interaction between densification due to mineralogical phase transitions and slab pull forces is subject to ongoing investigations. We have developed a two-dimensional subduction zone model that is based on thermodynamic equilibrium assemblage calculations and includes the effects of melting processes on the density distribution in the lithosphere. Our model calculates the 'metamorphic density' of rocks as a function of pressure, temperature and chemical composition in a subduction zone down to 250 km. We have used this model to show how the hydration, dehydration, partial melting and fractionation processes of rocks all influence the metamorphic density and greatly depend on the temperature field within the subduction system. These processes are largely neglected by other approaches that reproduce the density distribution within this complex tectonic setting. Our model demonstrates that the initiation of eclogitization (i.e., when crustal rocks reach higher densities than the ambient mantle) of the slab is not the only significant process that makes the descending slab denser and generates the slab pull force. Instead, the densification of the lithospheric mantle of the sinking slab starts earlier than eclogitization and contributes significantly to slab pull in the early stages of subduction. Accordingly, the complex metamorphic structure of the slab and the mantle wedge has an important impact on the development of subduction zones.

  5. Fluid-related inclusions in Alpine high-pressure peridotite reveal trace element recycling during subduction-zone dehydration of serpentinized mantle (Cima di Gagnone, Swiss Alps)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scambelluri, Marco; Pettke, Thomas; Cannaò, Enrico

    2015-11-01

    Serpentinites release at sub-arc depths volatiles and several fluid-mobile trace elements found in arc magmas. Constraining element uptake in these rocks and defining the trace element composition of fluids released upon serpentinite dehydration can improve our understanding of mass transfer across subduction zones and to volcanic arcs. The eclogite-facies garnet metaperidotite and chlorite harzburgite bodies embedded in paragneiss of the subduction melange from Cima di Gagnone derive from serpentinized peridotite protoliths and are unique examples of ultramafic rocks that experienced subduction metasomatism and devolatilization. In these rocks, metamorphic olivine and garnet trap polyphase inclusions representing the fluid released during high-pressure breakdown of antigorite and chlorite. Combining major element mapping and laser-ablation ICP-MS bulk inclusion analysis, we characterize the mineral content of polyphase inclusions and quantify the fluid composition. Silicates, Cl-bearing phases, sulphides, carbonates, and oxides document post-entrapment mineral growth in the inclusions starting immediately after fluid entrapment. Compositional data reveal the presence of two different fluid types. The first (type A) records a fluid prominently enriched in fluid-mobile elements, with Cl, Cs, Pb, As, Sb concentrations up to 103 PM (primitive mantle), ?102 PM Tl, Ba, while Rb, B, Sr, Li, U concentrations are of the order of 101 PM, and alkalis are ?2 PM. The second fluid (type B) has considerably lower fluid-mobile element enrichments, but its enrichment patterns are comparable to type A fluid. Our data reveal multistage fluid uptake in these peridotite bodies, including selective element enrichment during seafloor alteration, followed by fluid-rock interaction along with subduction metamorphism in the plate interface melange. Here, infiltration of sediment-equilibrated fluid produced significant enrichment of the serpentinites in As, Sb, B, Pb, an enriched trace element pattern that was then transferred to the fluid released at greater depth upon serpentine dehydration (type A fluid). The type B fluid hosted by garnet may record the composition of the chlorite breakdown fluid released at even greater depth. The Gagnone study-case demonstrates that serpentinized peridotites acquire water and fluid-mobile elements during ocean floor hydration and through exchange with sediment-equilibrated fluids in the early subduction stages. Subsequent antigorite devolatilization at subarc depths delivers aqueous fluids to the mantle wedge that can be prominently enriched in sediment-derived components, potentially triggering arc magmatism without the need of concomitant dehydration/melting of metasediments or altered oceanic crust.

  6. Petrological modeling of the flat and steep subduction zone in Central Chile, based on seismological, thermo-mechanical and mineralogical data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marianne, M.; Monfret, T.; Pardo, M. H.; Gerbault, M.; Ranalli, G.; Nolet, G.

    2012-12-01

    The Central Chilean subduction zone (27-35°S) is host to a multitude of unexplained phenomena, all likely linked to one another. The region displays a well developed, highly seismically active flat subduction, which correlates very well with the Juan Fernandez aseismic Ridge (JFR) track, subducting with the Nazca plate beneath South America. The nature of deformation back to normal subduction (30°) to the north and south of the flat slab is still debated. The continental crust above it is one of the thickest in the world (>70 km), and arc volcanism has ceased after having progressively migrated eastward at the inception of slab flattening. We notice the presence of a Double Benioff Zone (DBZ) with unexpectedly large interplane distance (30 km) than a conventional distance linked with the oceanic's plate age (~35 Ma). We also interpret a sequence of intermediate-depth earthquakes to occur along a reactivated pre-existing fault plane, probably indicating a link with outer rise faults. In order to better understand the interaction between the subducting and overriding lithospheres, the role of the JFR on the flat slab and the microseismicity, we have aimed at modeling the petrological composition of the area, along the flat slab (31.5°S) and the normally subducting slab (33.5°S). We have been looking for domains of plate hydration (and to which plausible amounts), and for the location of buoyant material in the slab, which is thought to be the main cause for its flattening. To do so, we combined seismic data with instantaneous thermo-mechanical models and mineralogical rock property databases. Here, we present seismic tomography images of first wave arrivals for the region from temporary seismic campaigns. Our seismic velocities associated to the ~100 km depth flat slab are best modeled with eclogitized oceanic crust, with a density > 3400 kg/m3. Non-eclogitized MORB material leads to much too low Vp and Vs values to explain our data in the flat slab. The continental mantle is characterized by spinel and garnet peridotites and is probably unusually cold, and the slab mantle is comprised dominantly of garnet peridotite. The lower continental crust appears to be eclogitized, in accordance with independent seismic studies for the area. What we find also is a moderately hydrated slab (2-12 wt% H2O) and continental mantle corner wedge (1-8 wt% H2O) down to a maximum of 70 km depth. Other domains are characterized by rocks with less than 0.1%wt H20.

  7. Traces of H2O in Ultrahigh-Pressure Metamorphic Rocks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dobrzhinetskaya, L. F.

    2007-05-01

    Ultrahigh-pressure (UHP) metamorphic rocks accommodate a significant amount of H2O at high pressures and temperatures during their deep subduction. Fluid-driven processes are responsible for mineral reactions; they may trigger phase transformations and provide a decisive weakening effect on the rheological behavior of the rocks during deep subduction, or they may lead to brittle failure and earthquakes. Dehydration reactions, producing fluid (i.e., H2O, CO2) during regional metamorphism at low-to-mid crustal levels (P ~ 0.1 - 1 GPa), are reasonably pressure insensitive. At these levels, the maximum dehydration occurs at the greatest temperatures experienced by buried rocks. In the deep subduction zone (> 120 - 150 km), where both high pressures and temperatures operate, the situation is different. There, on the one hand, the water becomes chemically bonded and incorporated into the structure of both nominally hydrous and anhydrous minerals. On the other hand, the aqueous fluid (a supercritical fluid) dissolves a considerable amount of mineral components at high pressures and temperatures, and a solute concentration increases as pressure is increased. Microstructural observations on ultrahigh-pressure minerals from eclogites and metasediments provide convincing evidence of fluid involvement as deep as the upper mantle and possibly, the mantle transition zone. Diamond is one of the minerals of great importance because it unambiguously records the high pressure (minimum 4 GPa and possibly > 4GPa) at which the host rocks were recrystallized. We present here the results of studies of nano-inclusions associated with dislocations of growth and/or with interstitial defects of carbon in diamond structure obtained with transmission electron microscopy, microRaman, and microInfrared synchrotron assisted spectroscopy. A diverse composition of multicomponent fluid and crystalline inclusions and characteristic of nitrogen aggregations, provide evidence that the diamonds were crystallized from a supercritical C-O-H fluid during a UHP metamorphism related to continental collision. These observations are also consistent with diamonds synthesized at high pressure and high temperature from graphite, amorphous carbon, and coal in the presence of H2O. The crustal signature of carbon isotopes (? 13C) in the diamonds, together with their multiphase fluid- solid inclusions, provides evidence of a pathway by which organic carbon and H2O were subducted to the mantle depths and returned back to the Earth's surface. Microstructural patterns such as healed cracks, microfabrics, etc., observed in other minerals co-existing with diamonds, can therefore be recognized and attributed to UPH metamorphism events and may cast a light on the deformation and rheology of UHP metamorphic rocks.

  8. Separation of supercritical slab-fluids to form aqueous fluid and melt components in subduction zone magmatism

    PubMed Central

    Kawamoto, Tatsuhiko; Kanzaki, Masami; Mibe, Kenji; Ono, Shigeaki

    2012-01-01

    Subduction-zone magmatism is triggered by the addition of H2O-rich slab-derived components: aqueous fluid, hydrous partial melts, or supercritical fluids from the subducting slab. Geochemical analyses of island arc basalts suggest two slab-derived signatures of a melt and a fluid. These two liquids unite to a supercritical fluid under pressure and temperature conditions beyond a critical endpoint. We ascertain critical endpoints between aqueous fluids and sediment or high-Mg andesite (HMA) melts located, respectively, at 83-km and 92-km depths by using an in situ observation technique. These depths are within the mantle wedge underlying volcanic fronts, which are formed 90 to 200 km above subducting slabs. These data suggest that sediment-derived supercritical fluids, which are fed to the mantle wedge from the subducting slab, react with mantle peridotite to form HMA supercritical fluids. Such HMA supercritical fluids separate into aqueous fluids and HMA melts at 92 km depth during ascent. The aqueous fluids are fluxed into the asthenospheric mantle to form arc basalts, which are locally associated with HMAs in hot subduction zones. The separated HMA melts retain their composition in limited equilibrium with the surrounding mantle. Alternatively, they equilibrate with the surrounding mantle and change the major element chemistry to basaltic composition. However, trace element signatures of sediment-derived supercritical fluids remain more in the melt-derived magma than in the fluid-induced magma, which inherits only fluid-mobile elements from the sediment-derived supercritical fluids. Separation of slab-derived supercritical fluids into melts and aqueous fluids can elucidate the two slab-derived components observed in subduction zone magma chemistry. PMID:23112158

  9. Separation of supercritical slab-fluids to form aqueous fluid and melt components in subduction zone magmatism.

    PubMed

    Kawamoto, Tatsuhiko; Kanzaki, Masami; Mibe, Kenji; Matsukage, Kyoko N; Ono, Shigeaki

    2012-11-13

    Subduction-zone magmatism is triggered by the addition of H(2)O-rich slab-derived components: aqueous fluid, hydrous partial melts, or supercritical fluids from the subducting slab. Geochemical analyses of island arc basalts suggest two slab-derived signatures of a melt and a fluid. These two liquids unite to a supercritical fluid under pressure and temperature conditions beyond a critical endpoint. We ascertain critical endpoints between aqueous fluids and sediment or high-Mg andesite (HMA) melts located, respectively, at 83-km and 92-km depths by using an in situ observation technique. These depths are within the mantle wedge underlying volcanic fronts, which are formed 90 to 200 km above subducting slabs. These data suggest that sediment-derived supercritical fluids, which are fed to the mantle wedge from the subducting slab, react with mantle peridotite to form HMA supercritical fluids. Such HMA supercritical fluids separate into aqueous fluids and HMA melts at 92 km depth during ascent. The aqueous fluids are fluxed into the asthenospheric mantle to form arc basalts, which are locally associated with HMAs in hot subduction zones. The separated HMA melts retain their composition in limited equilibrium with the surrounding mantle. Alternatively, they equilibrate with the surrounding mantle and change the major element chemistry to basaltic composition. However, trace element signatures of sediment-derived supercritical fluids remain more in the melt-derived magma than in the fluid-induced magma, which inherits only fluid-mobile elements from the sediment-derived supercritical fluids. Separation of slab-derived supercritical fluids into melts and aqueous fluids can elucidate the two slab-derived components observed in subduction zone magma chemistry. PMID:23112158

  10. Dynamics of intraoceanic subduction initiation: 1. Oceanic detachment fault inversion and the formation of supra-subduction zone ophiolites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maffione, Marco; Thieulot, Cedric; van Hinsbergen, Douwe J. J.; Morris, Antony; Plümper, Oliver; Spakman, Wim

    2015-06-01

    Subduction initiation is a critical link in the plate tectonic cycle. Intraoceanic subduction zones can form along transform faults and fracture zones, but how subduction nucleates parallel to mid-ocean ridges, as in e.g., the Neotethys Ocean during the Jurassic, remains a matter of debate. In recent years, extensional detachment faults have been widely documented adjacent to slow-spreading and ultraslow-spreading ridges where they cut across the oceanic lithosphere. These structures are extremely weak due to widespread occurrence of serpentine and talc resulting from hydrothermal alteration, and can therefore effectively localize deformation. Here, we show geochemical, tectonic, and paleomagnetic evidence from the Jurassic ophiolites of Albania and Greece for a subduction zone formed in the western Neotethys parallel to a spreading ridge along an oceanic detachment fault. With 2-D numerical modeling exploring the evolution of a detachment-ridge system experiencing compression, we show that serpentinized detachments are always weaker than spreading ridges. We conclude that, owing to their extreme weakness, oceanic detachments can effectively localize deformation under perpendicular far-field forcing, providing ideal conditions to nucleate new subduction zones parallel and close to (or at) spreading ridges. Direct implication of this, is that resumed magmatic activity in the forearc during subduction initiation can yield widespread accretion of suprasubduction zone ophiolites at or close to the paleoridge. Our new model casts the enigmatic origin of regionally extensive ophiolite belts in a novel geodynamic context, and calls for future research on three-dimensional modeling of subduction initiation and how upper plate extension is associated with that.

  11. Recurrence of Great Earthquakes: Evidence of Double Periodicity Along the Cascadia Subduction Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jurney, C.

    2002-12-01

    Since the recognition that the Cascadia subduction zone in the US Pacific Northwest has produced large magnitude earthquakes in the past seven thousand years there has been considerable discussion centered on the dates and intervals between the earthquakes. Accurate information about the intervals between events improves the estimated date and magnitude of the next great earthquake and increases our ability to assess the potential level of risk to the residents and structures of the Cascadia margin. The penultimate event occurred about 1000 years ago but relatively little organic material has been dated. In this study, organic material collected from buried soils along the banks of the Lewis and Clark River near Astoria, Oregon yielded high precision radiocarbon dates that better constrain the dates of the penultimate and the fourth event. The peaty horizon of soil 2, marking the penultimate event, yielded an age of 990 +/-\\ 60 RCYBP. The muddy horizon of soil 2 approximately 20-30 cm below the peaty soil yielded an age of 1227 \\pm 30 RCYBP. A Sitka spruce stump in growth position in soil 4 yielded an age of 1698 \\pm$14 RCYBP. These new dates are combined with paleoseismological data from literature in an attempt to find a distribution of recurrence between earthquakes. The accompanying statistical analysis systematically combines the average dates with two comparable sources of standard deviations, arising from (i) radiocarbon dating, and (ii) inter-sample deviations as reported by different authors. The resulting statistical distribution of recurrence intervals in the Cascadia margin allows us to reject both the hypothesis of single normally distributed periodic rate, and Poissonian random recurrence model. The minimal distribution fitting the data is the superposition of two normals, a "short" one with average period of 310 years/standard deviation of 120 years, and a "long" one with average of 820 years and standard deviation of 140 years. This fit leads to statistical "recurrence spectroscopy", refines our current expectation of the great events along the Cascadia margin, and necessitates the advanced spatial modeling of tectonic creep.

  12. Counter-intuitive Behavior of Subduction Zones: Weak Faults Rupture, Strong Faults Creep

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, K.; Gao, X.; Bilek, S. L.; Brown, L. N.

    2014-12-01

    Subduction interfaces that produce great earthquakes are often said to be "strongly coupled", and those that creep are said to be "weakly coupled". However, the relation between the strength and seismogenic behavior of subduction faults is far from clear. Seismological and geodetic observations of earthquake rupture usually provide information only on stress change, not fault strength. In this study, we infer fault strength by calculating frictional heating along megathrusts and comparing results with heat flow measurements. We find that stick-slip megathrusts that have produced great earthquakes such as at Japan Trench and northern Sumatra have very low apparent friction coefficients (~ 0.02 - 0.03), but megathrusts that creep such as at Northern Hikurangi and Manila Trench have higher values (up to ~0.13). The differnce cannot be explained by coseismic dynamic weakening of the stick-slip megathrusts, because the average stress drop in great earthquakes is usually less than 5 MPa, equivalent to a coseismic reduction of apparent friction coefficient by less than ~0.01. Therefore our results indicate differences in the static strength of different subduction faults. Why are the creeping faults stronger? We think it is related to their creeping mechanism. Very rugged subducting seafloor tends to cause creep and hinder great earthquake rupture (Wang and Bilek, 2014). In contrast, all giant earthquakes have occurred at subduction zones with relatively smooth subducting seafloor. Large geometrical irregularities such as seamounts generate heterogeneous structure and stresses that promote numerous small and medium size earthquakes and aseismic creep. The creeping is a process of breaking and wearing of geometrical irregularities in a deformation zone and is expected to be against relatively large resistance (strong creep). This is different from the creeping of smooth faults due to the presence of weak fault gouge (weak creep) such as along the creeping segment of the San Andreas fault. The general correlation between subducting seafloor ruggedness, creeping, and greater heat dissipation, if further verified, provides a new perspective in assessing earthquake and tsunami hazards for risk mitigation. Wang, K., and S. L. Bilek. Tectonophysics 610, 1-24 (2014).

  13. The variations of long time period slow slip events along the Ryukyu subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tu, Y. T.; Heki, K.

    2014-12-01

    Slow slip events (SSEs) are a type of slow earthquakes that can be observed with Global Positioning System (GPS) networks in the world. Those events are detected on intensely coupled plate boundaries such as Cascadia subduction zone (Dragert et al., 2001), western North America, Mexico (Kostoglodov et al., 2003), Alaska (Ohta et al., 2007) and Tokai and Boso areas (Ozawa et al., 2002, 2003), central Japan and are considered to have relations to large subduction thrust earthquakes. However, in southwestern Ryukyu trench where most of researchers believe that it should be a decoupled plate boundary, SSEs recur regularly and are located at a patch that is as deep as 20 to 40 km (Heki and Kataoka, 2008). For comprehending the characteristics and time variations of SSEs in this area, the GEONET GPS data of 16 years are used in this study. During 1997 to 2014, more than thirty SSEs are identified near Hateruma Island, Ryukyu. The average recurrence interval is calculated to be 6.3 months and release seismic moment is Mw 6.6 on average. However, the values of recurrence interval are not invariable. From 1997 to 2002, interval period of SSEs is 7.5 months, but during 2002 to 2008, the interval period decreases suddenly to 5.5 months. After 2008, the value restores to 7.2 months again. Furthermore, the slip amount of SSEs in this area varies with time. From 1997 to 2002, the slip is 9.5 cm/year; and during 2002 to 2008, the value slightly increases to 10.5 cm/year. However, in 2008 to 2013, the slip drops to 6.6 cm/year, but accord to the trend of cumulative slip, the slip value would increase in 2014. Considering these data, we find the slip values increase conspicuously in 2002 and 2013. Coincidentally, one Mw 7.1 thrust earthquake occurred in 2002 and earthquake swarm activity started in the Okinawa trough approximately 50km north of the SSE patch. In 2013, another earthquake swarm activity occurred in nearly the same area as the 2002 activity. This suggests that the slip amount varies due to the earthquake swarm activities in Okinawa trough; the external stress perturbations such as magma injection and the Mw 7.1 earthquake could accelerate the slip amount of SSEs.

  14. Tsunami recurrence inferred from soil deposits on Ishigaki island along the Ryukyu subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ando, M.; Shishikura, M.; Tu, Y.; Nakamura, M.; Arashiro, Y.

    2012-12-01

    The Ryukyu trench at the northwestern boundary of the Philippine Sea plate had no known thrust earthquakes Mw>8.0 in approximately the last 250 years. Due to this lack of associated large thrust earthquakes, an accepted common idea is that Ryukyu trench is aseismic. However, in 1771 a large tsunami struck Ishigaki islands and Miyako islands with the run-up height of up to 30-35 m. The 1771 source is suggested to be a tsunami (slow) earthquake with Mw=8.0 that occurred near the trench axis. Furthermore, very-low frequency earthquakes at shallow depths near the trench axis and slow-slip events at depths of 30km have been identified in the western Ryukyu trench. These findings suggest that the Ryukyu subduction zone has the potential to generate large thrust earthquakes. If the slip deficit has accumulated at the interface, the accumulated slip of more than 30 m would cause a large earthquake and a huge tsunami. Considering the abovementioned findings, estimate for the size and recurrence intervals of past tsunamis along the western Ryukyu trench was undertaken through excavation surveys of the Holocene deposits in Ishigaki and Miyako islands. The excavated sites are located on the lower Holocene marine terraces and implemented using a geoslicer or backhoes at 10 sites on November 2011 and June 2012. Stratigraphic and foraminiferal assemblages of tsunami sediment were compared with shallow beach sand to gain information on sediment source and depositional style. Based on the excavations, two tsunami layers were identified at 5 sites and provided estimates of sedimentation ages. The results obtained from stratigaraphic and foraminiferal analyses together with C14 dates of tsunami sediment indicated an event between 9-11th C. on Ishigaki and another or the same event occurred between 11th C. and 1771 on Miyako island. Consequently, if the 1771 earthquake is the only event that had occurred in the last 300 years over the 120 km, large earthquakes would potentially occur in the future along the rest of segments along the Western Ryukyu boundary.

  15. Why is the Cascadia subduction zone backarc hot? Numerical tests of mantle wedge flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Currie, C. A.; Wang, K.; Hyndman, R. D.; He, J.

    2003-12-01

    Understanding mantle wedge processes is critical for constraining thermal and petrological controls on in-slab earthquakes and the behaviour of the deep subduction thrust fault. Observational constraints indicate that the mantle wedge at the northern Cascadia subduction zone is extremely hot. Below the volcanic arc, temperatures greater than 1300° C are required for magma generation. In the backarc, surface heat flow, seismic velocities, thermal isostasy and xenolith studies suggest temperatures of 1200° C at 60 km depth for a distance of 500 km. The landward limit of the backarc is the abrupt contact with the thick, cold North America craton, making high backarc temperatures even more surprising. An initial compilation of thermal data shows that most other backarcs are similarly hot. Finite element thermal models are used to investigate the backarc mantle flow structure that maintains these high temperatures. Two principle driving forces for flow are: traction along the top of the subducting slab and buoyancy forces due to lateral thermal heterogeneities, such as cooling by the slab and Rayleigh instabilities. In this study, we primarily deal with traction-driven flow, using Cascadia subduction parameters. A thick (>200 km) lithosphere was introduced at the landward backarc boundary, consistent with the presence of the North America craton root. For an isoviscous mantle, the craton deflects hot material from depth into the wedge, resulting in a warmer wedge than models without a craton, although the temperatures are 150-300° C lower than inferred from observations. Decoupling of the wedge from the over-riding plate increases the backarc Moho temperature by over 100° C; temperatures below the arc are relatively unaffected. With a more realistic stress- and temperature-dependent viscosity, high velocity flow originates from great depths along the landward boundary, even without a craton. Flow is strongly focussed into the wedge corner, leading to much higher sub-arc temperatures (>1250° C). However, the flow pattern produces low backarc mantle temperatures and heat flow, inconsistent with observations. For all models, full coupling between the subducting plate and wedge was assumed. If partial decoupling occurs, due to the presence of hydrated mantle or serpentine/talc, wedge flow velocities will be slower, and the wedge will be cooler than predicted by the models. None of the traction-driven flow models simultaneously produced high temperatures below the volcanic arc and a uniformly hot backarc. Numerous studies indicate that the mantle wedge viscosity is less than 1019 Pa s. Initial tests suggest that at such low viscosities, wedge flow driven by thermal buoyancy may be more important than traction-driven flow.

  16. Repeating earthquakes on the Chile Subduction zone following the Maule 2010 Earthquake

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jenkins, Jennifer; Rietbrock, Andreas

    2013-04-01

    Repeating earthquakes showing identical waveforms are thought to represent stick-slip movement on small asperities driven by surrounding aseismically sliding areas. Such events have the potential to measure slip rates directly on a fault interface and such techniques have been successfully implemented in numerous locations, most notably on the San Andreas Fault and, more recently, the Japan subduction zone. Following the 2010 Mw 8.8 Maule earthquake, an international collaboration resulted in the set up of a large seismic network to investigate aftershock activity. The International Maule Aftershock Dataset (IMAD) collated from this network provides an excellent opportunity to study repeating earthquakes in the context of aftershock activity. Using data from the first 9 months following the main shock we identify similar events on the basis of waveform similarity at multiple stations (cross correlation coefficients > 0.9 over 7 sec window), and group using the clustering algorithm of Maurer and Diechmann (1995). Thus far this technique has been applied to a band of deep seismicity (40-50km) running NE-SW inland along the length of Chile, which is distributed in elongated trench parallel groups of seismicity. Of the 9229 events analysed 1561 (17%), were found to be part of clusters of similar events, though approximately 50% of events were part of doublets as opposed to larger multiplets. These small (average Ml 3-3.5), highly similar earthquakes are distributed throughout the deep seismicity band and multiple similar clusters can be found in each group of seismicity. Moment tensor inversions of larger similar events reveal slab interface thrust type focal mechanisms. It is thought that repeating earthquake asperities may delineate the border between larger locked and creeping areas of the fault plane (Sammis & Rice, 2001), thus we hypothesise that this band of clustered seismicity may represent the transition zone between the locked and aseismically sliding regions of the down going slab. Following this theory identification of offshore clustered seismicity may aid in better defining the limit of the coseismic rupture area, which varies greatly between published coseismic slip models. Initial investigations into recurrence times between similar events within clusters, reveal a complex variation with time rather than the simple increase in recurrence time following the main event anticipated. It is hoped that relative location of repeating events may now be improved using a double difference relocation algorithm, allowing more detailed investigation of cluster distribution and location/timing relationships.

  17. Crustal deformation at the Nankai subduction zone inferred from onshore GPS velocities and seafloor geodetic observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Watanabe, T.; Tadokoro, K.; Ikuta, R.; Okuda, T.; Nagai, S.; Kuno, M.

    2011-12-01

    The Philippine Sea plate (PH) subducts beneath the southwest Japan along the Nankai Trough with a rate of about 4-6 cm/yr, where megathrust earthquakes have repeatedly occurred every 100-150 years. The probability of earthquake occurrence within 30 years from January 1st, 2011 are estimated to be 87 %, 70 %, and 60 % for the next Tokai, Tonankai, and Nankai earthquakes, respectively. We are concerned about the expansion of earthquake damage because these earthquakes have possibilities of interlocking with adjacent segments according to the historical record. Thus, it is important to know the spatio-temporal variation of crustal deformation accompanied with plate interaction. For this issue, we have conducted seafloor geodetic observation at the Nankai Trough using a GPS/Acoustic technique since 2004. In this system, we estimate the position of a surveying vessel by Kinematic GPS analysis and measure the distance between the vessel and the benchmark on the seafloor by Acoustic measurements. Next we determine the location of the benchmark. For the repeatability of this observation, the location of benchmark is determined within a precision of 2-3 cm at horizontal components. Recently, a number of research institutes have conducted seafloor geodetic observation using this technique before and after earthquakes occurred in offshore area, and then they have provided significant achievement to understand inter-, co-, and post-seismic crustal deformation. Several seafloor benchmarks are located at the Nankai subduction zone, which are individually operated by Japan Coast Guard, Tohoku University, and Nagoya University. In the Kumano Basin, we have three seafloor benchmarks located about 60-80 km away from the deformation front of the Nankai Trough. The observations from 2005 to 2010 have illustrated that those benchmarks are moving at rates of about 3-4 cm/yr toward west-northwest with velocity uncertainties of about 2 cm/yr relative to the Amurian plate (AM). In this study, we investigate interplate coupling at the Nankai Trough using onshore GPS velocities derived from Geophysical Survey Institute of Japan and offshore GPS site velocities derived from seafloor geodetic observation. We assume that observed GPS velocities are represented by the superposition of elastic deformation associated with subduction of the PH, rigid block motion of the overriding plate, and error. The plate interface along the Nankai Trough is represented by multiple rectangular faults. Moreover relative plate motion of the PH-AM (Sella et al., 2002) is assigned to the plate interface as a priori constraint.

  18. Dispersed Volcanic Ash in Sediment Entering NW Pacific Ocean Subduction Zones: Towards a Regional Perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scudder, R. P.; Murray, R. W.; Underwood, M.; Kutterolf, S.; Plank, T.; Dyonisius, M.; Arshad, M. A.

    2011-12-01

    Volcanic ash has long been recognized to be an important component of the global sedimentary system. Ash figures prominently in a number of sedimentary and petrophysical investigations, including how the fluid budget of subducting sediment will be affected by hydration/dehydration reactions. Additionally, many studies focus on discrete ash layers, and how to link their presence with volcanism, climate, arc evolution, biological productivity, and other processes. Less widely recognized is the ash that is mixed into the bulk sediment, or "dispersed" ash. Dispersed ash is quantitatively significant and is an under-utilized source of critical geochemical and tectonic information. Based on geochemical studies of ODP Site 1149, a composite of DSDP Sites 579 & 581, as well as IODP Sites C0011 & C0012 drilled during Expedition 322, we will show the importance of dispersed ash to the Izu-Bonin-Marianas, Kurile-Kamchatka and Nankai subduction zones. Initial geochemical analyses of the bulk sediment, as related to dispersed ash entering these subduction systems are presented here. Geochemical analysis shows that the characteristics of the three sites exhibit some variability consistent with observed lithological variations. For example, the average SiO2/Al2O3 ratios at Site 1149, Site C0011 and Site C0012 average 3.7. The composite of Sites 579 & 581 exhibits a higher average of 4.6. There are contrasts between other key major elemental indicators as well (e.g., Fe2O3). Ternary diagrams such as K2O-Na2O-CaO show that there are at least two distinct geochemical fields with Sites 1149, C0011 and C0012 clustering in one and Sites 579 & 581 in the other. Q-mode Factor Analysis was performed on the bulk sediment chemical data in order to determine the composition of potential end members of these sites. The multivariate statistics indicate that Site 1149 has 3-4 end members, consistent with the results of Scudder et al. (2009, EPSL, v. 284, pp 639), while each of the other sites has 4-5 end members. These geochemical signatures (e.g., K2O) of the dispersed ash can be exploited to provide insight into the importance of clay mineralogy (i.e., smectite). Additional results from trace and REE analyses, combined with additional statistical treatments, will also be presented.

  19. Fluid Origins, Thermal Regimes, and Fluid and Solute Fluxes in the Forearc of Subduction Zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kastner, M.; Solomon, E. A.; Harris, R. N.; Torres, M. E.

    2014-12-01

    An in-depth analysis and synthesis of published and newly acquired data on the chemical and isotopic composition of forearc fluids, fluid fluxes, and the associated thermal regimes in five well-studied, representative erosional and accretionary subduction zone (SZ) forearcs will be presented. Evidence of large-scale fluid flow, primarily focused along faults, is manifested by widespread seafloor venting, associated biological communities, authigenic carbonate formation, chemical and isotopic anomalies in pore-fluid depth-profiles, and thermal anomalies. The nature of fluid venting seems to differ at the two types of SZs. At both, fluid and gas venting sites are primarily associated with faults. At accretionary SZs, the décollement and underthrust coarser-grained stratigraphic horizons are the main fluid conduits, whereas at non-accreting and erosive margins, the fluids from compaction and dehydration reactions are to a great extent partitioned between the décollement and focused conduits through the prism. The measured fluid output fluxes at seeps are high, ~15-40 times the amount that can be produced through local steady-state compaction, suggesting additional fluid sources or non-steady-state fluid flow must be involved. Recirculation of seawater must be an important component of the overall forearc output fluid flux. The most significant chemical and isotopic characteristics of the expelled fluids relative to seawater are: Cl dilution, sulfate, Ca and Mg depletions, and enrichments in Li, B, Si, Sr, alkalinity, and hydrocarbon concentrations; they often have distinctive ?18O, ?D, ?7Li, ?11B, and ?37Cl values, and variable Sr isotope ratios. These characteristics provide key insights on the source of the fluid and the temperature at the source. Using our best fluid output flux estimate and considering an ocean volume of 1340 × 106 km3, the global ocean residence time in SZs is ~100 Myr. This value is five times faster than previous estimates for SZs and is more similar to the estimates of the residence time in the global ridge crest that range from 20-90 Myr. Based on this extrapolated fluid reflux to the global ocean, SZs are an important source and sink for several elements and isotopic ratios, in particular an important sink for seawater sulfate, Ca, Mg, and sulfate, and an important source of B and Li.

  20. Spatial distribution of random velocity inhomogeneities in the western part of Nankai subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takahashi, T.; Obana, K.; Yamamoto, Y.; Nakanishi, A.; Kodaira, S.; Kaneda, Y.

    2011-12-01

    In the Nankai trough, there are three seismogenic zones of megathrust earthquakes (Tokai, Tonankai and Nankai earthquakes). Lithospheric structures in and around these seismogenic zones are important for the studies on mutual interactions and synchronization of their fault ruptures. Recent studies on seismic wave scattering at high frequencies (>1Hz) make it possible to estimate 3D distributions of random inhomogeneities (or scattering coefficient) in the lithosphere, and clarified that random inhomogeneity is one of the important medium properties related to microseismicity and damaged structure near the fault zone [Asano & Hasegawa, 2004; Takahashi et al. 2009]. This study estimates the spatial distribution of the power spectral density function (PSDF) of random inhomogeneities the western part of Nankai subduction zone, and examines the relations with crustal velocity structure and seismic activity. Seismic waveform data used in this study are those recorded at seismic stations of Hi-net & F-net operated by NIED, and 160 ocean bottom seismographs (OBSs) deployed at Hyuga-nada region from Dec. 2008 to Jan. 2009. This OBS observation was conducted by JAMSTEC as a part of "Research concerning Interaction Between the Tokai, Tonankai and Nankai Earthquakes" funded by Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, Japan. Spatial distribution of random inhomogeneities is estimated by the inversion analysis of the peak delay time of small earthquakes [Takahashi et al. 2009], where the peak delay time is defined as the time lag from the S-wave onset to its maximal amplitude arrival. We assumed the von Karman type functional form for the PSDF. Peak delay times are measured from root mean squared envelopes at 4-8Hz, 8-16Hz and 16-32Hz. Inversion result can be summarized as follows. Random inhomogeneities beneath the Quaternary volcanoes are characterized by strong inhomogeneities at small spatial scale (~ a few hundreds meter) and weak spectral gradient. Those in the Hyuga-nada region are characterized by the strong inhomogeneities at large spatial wavelength and steep spectral gradient. Random inhomogeneities in the Hyuga-nada region are similar with those in the frontal arc high in northern Izu-Bonin arc, which is thought to be a remnant arc that is presently inactive [Takahashi et al. 2011]. This coincidence implies the existence of subducted Kyushu-Palau ridge in this anomaly of random inhomogeneities, which is also suggested by the seismic refraction survey in this region [Nakanishi et al. 2010 AGU Fall Mtg.]. Source rupture areas of large earthquakes (M>6) in Hyuga-nada regions tend to locate around this anomaly of inhomogeneities. We may say that this anomalously inhomogeneous region is a structural factor affecting the seismic activity in Hyuga-nada region.

  1. Nanoscale Properties of Rocks and Subduction Zone Rheology: Inferences for the Mechanisms of Deep Earthquakes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riedel, M. R.

    2007-12-01

    Grain boundaries are the key for the understanding of mineral reaction kinetics. More generally, nanometer scale processes involved in breaking and establishing bonds at reaction sites determine how and at which rate bulk rock properties change in response to external tectonic forcing and possibly feed back into various geodynamic processes. A particular problem is the effects of grain-boundary energy on the kinetics of the olivine-spinel phase transformation in subducting slabs. Slab rheology is affected in many ways by this (metastable) mineral phase change. Sluggish kinetics due to metastable hindrance is likely to cause particular difficulties, because of possible strong non-linear feedback loops between strain-rate and change of creep properties during transformation. In order to get these nanoscale properties included into thermo-mechanical models, reliable kinetic data is required. The measurement of grain-boundary energies is, however, a rather difficult problem. Conventional methods of grain boundary surface tension measurement include (a) equilibrium angles at triple junction (b) rotating ball method (c) thermal groove method, and others (Gottstein & Shvindlerman, 1999). Here I suggest a new method that allows for the derivation of grain-boundary energies for an isochemical phase transformation based on experimental (in-situ) kinetic data in combination with a corresponding dynamic scaling law (Riedel and Karato, 1997). The application of this method to the olivine-spinel phase transformation in subducting slabs provides a solution to the extrapolation problem of measured kinetic data: Any kinetic phase boundary measured at the laboratory time scale can be "scaled" to the correct critical isotherm at subduction zones, under experimentelly "forbidden" conditions (Liou et al., 2000). Consequences for the metastability hypothesis that relates deep seismicity with olivine metastability are derived and discussed. References: Gottstein G, Shvindlerman LS (1999) Grain Boundary Migration in Metals, CRC Press, 385 pp., New York. Riedel MR, Karato S (1997) Grain-Size Evolution in Subducted Oceanic Lithosphere Associated with the Olivine- Spinel Transformation and Its Effects on Rheology. EPSL 148: 27-43. Liou JG, Hacker BR, Zhang RY (2000) Into the forbidden zone. Science 287, 1215-1216.

  2. Earthquake precise locations catalog for the Lesser Antilles subduction zone (1972-2013)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Massin, Frederick; Amorese, Daniel; Beauducel, Francois; Bengoubou-Valérius, Mendy; Bernard, Marie-Lise; Bertil, Didier

    2014-05-01

    Locations for earthquake recorded in the Lesser Antilles subduction zone are processed separately by regional observatories, NEIC and ISC. There is no earthquake location catalog available compiling all available phase arrival data. We propose a new best complete earthquake catalog by merging all available phase arrival data for better constrains on earthquake locations. ISC provides the phase arrival data of 29243 earthquakes (magnitude range from 1.4 to 6.4) recorded by PRSN (Porto Rico), SRC (British West Indies), and from FUNVISIS (Venezuela). We add phases data from IPGP observatories for 68718 earthquakes from magnitudes 0.1 to 7.5 (OVSG, Guadeloupe, recorded 53226 earthquakes since 1981, and OVSM, Martinique, recorded 29931 earthquakes since 1972). IPGP also provides the accelerometer waveform data of the GIS-RAP network. We achieved automatic picking on the GIS-RAP data using the Component Energy Correlation Method. The CECM provides high precision phase detection, a realistic estimation of picking error and realistic weights that can be used with manual pick weights. The CECM add an average of 3 P-waves and 2 S-waves arrivals to 3846 earthquakes recorded by the GIS-RAP network since 2002. The final catalog contains 84979 earthquakes between 1972 and 2013, 24528 of which we compiled additional data. We achieve earthquake location using NonLinLoc, regional P and S waves data and a set of one dimensional velocity models. We produce improved locations for 22974 earthquakes (better residuals, on equal or larger arrival dataset) and improved duration magnitudes for 6258 earthquakes (using duration data and improved locations). A subset of best constrained 15626 hypocenters (with more than 8 phases and an average RMS of 0.48±0.77s) could be used for structural analysis and earthquake local tomography. Relative locations are to be applied in order to image active faulting. We aim to understand coupling in the seismogenic zone as well as triggering mechanisms of intermediate depth seismicity like fluid migration beneath the volcanic arc.

  3. He isotope ratios in the Nankai Trough and Costa Rica subduction zones - implications for volatile cycling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kastner, M.; Hilton, D. R.; Jenkins, W. J.; Solomon, E. A.; Spivack, A. J.

    2013-12-01

    The noble gas 3He is a clear indicator of primordial volatile flux from the mantle, thus providing important insights on the interaction between Earth's interior and exterior reservoirs. Volatile cycling at ridge-crests and its impact on the evolution of seawater chemistry is rather well known as constrained by the 3He flux, whereas the impact of volatile cycling at subduction zones (SZs) on seawater chemistry is as yet poorly known. Constraining chemical and isotopic cycling at SZs is important for understanding the evolution of the mantle-crust and ocean-atmosphere systems. To gain insights on volatile cycling in SZs, pore fluids were sampled for He concentration and isotopic analyses at two tectonically contrasting SZs, Nankai Trough (offshore Japan, Muroto and Kumano transects), an accretionary SZ, and Costa Rica (Offshore Osa Peninsula), an erosional SZ. Sampling for He was achieved by rapidly subsampling core sediments, cleaning and transferring these samples into Ti squeezers in a glove bag, and storing the squeezed pore fluids in crimped Cu tubes for shore-based He concentration and isotope ratio analyses. At the Nankai Trough SZ there is a remarkable range of He isotopic values. The 3He/4He ratios relative to atmospheric ratio (RA) range from mostly crustal 0.47 RA to 4.30 RA which is ~55% of the MORB value of 8 RA. Whereas at the Costa Rica SZ, offshore Osa Peninsula, the ratios range from 0.86 to 1.14 RA, indicating the dominance of crustal radiogenic 4He that is from U and Th decay. The distribution of the He isotope values at Nankai Trough is most interesting, fluids that contain significant mantle 3He components (3He/4He >1) were sampled along and adjacent to fluid conduits that were identified by several chemical and isotopic data (i.e. Cl, B, and Li), including the presence of thermogenic hydrocarbons. Whereas the fluids dominated by 4He (3He/4He ?1) were obtained from sediment sections that were between the fluid conduits. At Costa Rica, however, even along conduits, the fluids were not greatly enriched in 3He, hence there is no evidence for fluid advection from the subducting Cocos Ridge and numerous seamounts into the sediments, suggesting greatly diminished hydrothermal activity. Focused flow along faults, the décollement, splay and out of sequence faults, and fractured and permeable horizons at SZs play a key role in controlling fluid and heat transport, including mantle He, whereas diffuse flow plays a minor role; mud volcanoes and seeps as well play some role in volatile cycling.

  4. Evidence of melting, melt percolation and deformation in a supra-subduction zone (Marum ophiolite complex, Papua New Guinea)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaczmarek, Mary-Alix; Jonda, Leo; Davies, Hugh L.

    2015-08-01

    New geochemical and microstructural data are presented for a suite of ultramafic rocks from the Marum ophiolite in Papua New Guinea. Our results describe a piece of most depleted mantle made essentially of dunite and harzburgite showing compositions of supra-subduction zone peridotite. Strong olivine crystallographic preferred orientations (CPOs) in dunite and harzburgite inferred the activation of both (001)[100] and (010)[100] slip systems, which are activated at high-temperature and low-stress conditions. Clinopyroxene and orthopyroxene CPOs inferred the activation of (100)[001] and (010)[001] slip systems, which are common for pyroxenes deformed at high temperature. This plastic deformation is interpreted to have developed during the formation of the Marum ophiolite, prior to melt percolation. The orientation of the foliation and olivine [100] slip directions sub-parallel to the subduction zone indicates that mantle flow was parallel to the trench pointing a fast polarisation direction parallel to the arc. This provides new evidence that fast polarisation direction parallel to the arc could be caused by anisotropic peridotite and not by olivine [001] slip. After its formation, Marum ophiolite has been fertilised by diffuse crystallisation of a low proportion of clinopyroxene (1-2 %) (P1) and formation of cm-scale ol-clinopyroxenite and ol-websterite veins cross-cutting the foliation (P2). This percolating melt shows silica-rich magnesian affinities (boninite-like) related to supra-subduction zone in a young fore-arc environment. The peridotite has also been percolated by a melt with more tholeiite affinities precipitating plagioclase-rich wehrlite and thin gabbroic veins (P3); these are interpreted to form after the boninitic event. The small proportion of newly crystallised pyroxene in the dunite shows similar orientation of crystallographic axes to the host dunite (<100>ol parallel to <001>cpx-opx). In contrast, the pyroxenes in ol-clinopyroxenite, ol-websterite and the thin gabbroic veins in the wehrlite, record their own orientation with <001> axes at 45°-60° to olivine <100> axes. Our results indicate that for low melt proportion the crystallisation is governed by epitaxial growth, and when the proportion of melt is higher the newly formed minerals record syn-kinematic crystallisation. This switch of crystallographic axes orientation of newly formed minerals indicates a reorientation of the constraints during the boninitic and tholeiitic melts event probably due to a variation of lateral mantle flow within the fore-arc area. The variation of the crystallographic axes orientation could be an indicator for the development of a young fore-arc mantle in supra-subduction zone.

  5. The thermal effect of fluid circulation in the subducting crust on slab melting in the Chile subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spinelli, Glenn A.; Wada, Ikuko; He, Jiangheng; Perry, Matthew

    2016-01-01

    Fluids released from subducting slabs affect geochemical recycling and melt generation in the mantle wedge. The distribution of slab dehydration and the potential for slab melting are controlled by the composition/hydration of the slab entering a subduction zone and the pressure-temperature path that the slab follows. We examine the potential for along-strike changes in temperatures, fluid release, and slab melting for the subduction zone beneath the southern portion of the Southern Volcanic Zone (SVZ) in south central Chile. Because the age of the Nazca Plate entering the subduction zone decreases from ?14 Ma north of the Guafo Fracture Zone to ?6 Ma to the south, a southward warming of the subduction zone has been hypothesized. However, both north and south of Guafo Fracture Zone the geochemical signatures of southern SVZ arc lavas are similar, indicating 3-5 wt.% sediment melt and little to no contribution from melt of subducted basalt or aqueous fluids from subducted crust. We model temperatures in the system, use results of the thermal models and the thermodynamic calculation code Perple_X to estimate the pattern of dehydration-derived fluid release, and examine the potential locations for the onset of melting of the subducting slab. Surface heat flux observations in the region are most consistent with fluid circulation in the high permeability upper oceanic crust redistributing heat. This hydrothermal circulation preferentially cools the hottest parts of the system (i.e. those with the youngest subducting lithosphere). Models including the thermal effects of fluid circulation in the oceanic crust predict melting of the subducting sediment but not the basalt, consistent with the geochemical observations. In contrast, models that do not account for fluid circulation predict melting of both subducting sediment and basalt below the volcanic arc south of Guafo Fracture Zone. In our simulations with the effects of fluid circulation, the onset of sediment melting occurs under the volcanic arc, but dewatering of the subducting sediment and basalt is focused farther seaward (below the landward boundary of the stagnant mantle wedge corner). Thus, the sediment melt could enter the mantle wedge, contributing to the composition of the southern SVZ magmas, yet remain separate from the fluid derived from sediment dewatering which could migrate updip within the slab or into the wedge corner. Preferential hydrothermal cooling of the hottest segments of the system can help explain how there can be fairly uniform magma composition along the arc, despite large along-arc differences in the age of the subducting plate.

  6. Constraints on Subduction Zone Coupling along the Philippine and Manila Trenches based on GPS and Seismological Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamburger, M. W.; Johnson, K. M.; Nowicki, M. A. E.; Bacolcol, T. C.; Solidum, R., Jr.; Galgana, G.; Hsu, Y. J.; Yu, S. B.; Rau, R. J.; McCaffrey, R.

    2014-12-01

    We present results of two techniques to estimate the degree of coupling along the two major subduction zone boundaries that bound the Philippine Mobile Belt, the Philippine Trench and the Manila Trench. Convergence along these plate margins accommodates about 100 mm/yr of oblique plate motion between the Philippine Sea and Sundaland plates. The coupling estimates are based on a recently acquired set of geodetic data from a dense nationwide network of continuous and campaign GPS sites in the Philippines. First, we use a kinematic, elastic block model (tdefnode; McCaffrey, 2009) that combines existing fault geometries, GPS velocities and focal mechanism solutions to solve for block rotations, fault coupling, and intra-block deformation. Secondly, we use a plate-block kinematic model described in Johnson (2013) to simultaneously estimate long-term fault slip rates, block motions and interseismic coupling on block-bounding faults. The best-fit model represents the Philippine Mobile Belt by 14 independently moving rigid tectonic blocks, separated by active faults and subduction zones. The model predicts rapid convergence along the Manila Trench, decreasing progressively southwards, from > 100 mm/yr in the north to less than 20 mm/yr in the south at the Mindoro Island collision zone. Persistent areas of high coupling, interpreted to be asperities, are observed along the Manila Trench slab interface, in central Luzon (16-18°N) and near its southern and northern terminations. Along the Philippine Trench, we observe ~50 mm/yr of oblique convergence, with high coupling observed at its central and southern segments. We identify the range of allowable coupling distributions and corresponding moment accumulation rates on the two subduction zones by conducting a suite of inversions in which the total moment accumulation rate on a selected fault is fixed. In these constrained moment inversions we test the range of possible solutions that meet criteria for minimum, best-fit, and maximum coupling that still fit the data, based on reduced chi-squared calculations. In spite of the variable coupling, the total potential moment accumulation rate along each of the two subduction zones is estimated to range from 3.98 x 1019 to 2.24 x 1020 N-m yr-1, equivalent to a magnitude Mw 8.4 to 8.9 earthquake per 100 years.

  7. Variability in forearc deformation during subduction: Insight from geodynamic models and application to the Calabria subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Zhihao; Schellart, Wouter; Duarte, Joao

    2015-04-01

    In nature subducting slabs and overriding plate segments bordering subduction zones are generally embedded within larger plates. Such large plates can impose far-field boundary conditions that impact the style of subduction and overriding plate deformation. Here we present 3D dynamic analogue models of subduction, in which the far-field boundary conditions at the trailing edges of the subducting plate (SP) and overriding plate (OP) are varied. Four configurations are presented: Free (both plates free), SP-Fixed, OP-Fixed and SP-OP-Fixed. We investigate their impact on the kinematics and dynamics of subduction, with a special focus on overriding plate deformation. Our models indicate that in natural (narrow) subduction zones, assuming a homogeneous overriding plate, the formation of backarc basins (e.g., Tyrrhenian Sea, Aegean Sea, Scotia Sea) is generally expected to occur at a comparable location (300-500 km from the trench), irrespective of the boundary condition. Furthermore, our models indicate that the style of forearc deformation (shortening or extension) is determined by the mobility of the overriding plate through controlling the force normal to the subduction zone interface (trench suction). Our geodynamic model that uses the SP-OP-Fixed set-up is comparable to the Calabria subduction zone with respect to subduction kinematics, slab geometry, trench curvature and accretionary wedge configuration. Furthermore, it provides explanation for the natural observations of both backarc extension in the Tyrrhenian Sea and forearc extension in the Calabria region, which have been active since the Miocene. We explain the observations as a consequence of subduction of the narrow Calabrian slab and the immobility of the subducting African plate and overriding Eurasian plate. This setting forced subduction to be accommodated almost entirely by slab rollback (not trenchward overriding plate motion), while trench retreat was accommodated almost entirely by backarc and forearc extension (not trenchward overriding plate motion), similarly to our SP-OP-Fixed model. This tectonic setting induced strong trench suction, which caused the forearc extension in Calabria.

  8. Ultramafic cumulates of oceanic affinity in an intracontinental subduction zone: UHP garnet peridotites from Pohorje (Eastern

    E-print Network

    Hattori, Kéiko H.

    peridotites from Pohorje (Eastern Alps, Slovenia) Jan C.M. De Hoog 1,* Marian Janák 2 Mirijam Vrabec 3 Keiko H Garnet peridotites from the Slovenska Bistrica Ultramafic Complex (SBUC) in the Pohorje Mts., Eastern depleted mantle of oceanic affinity. The metamorphic assemblage of the garnet peridotites consists

  9. Geodynamics of collision and collapse at the AfricaArabiaEurasia subduction zone an introduction

    E-print Network

    Utrecht, Universiteit

    ; (2) continental drift, sea-floor spreading and formation of ocean basins; (3) subduction initiation and drifting in the Western Mediterranean (Dercourt et al. 1986), and with initiation of the Tyrrhenian oceanic subduction stage closes the oceanic basin, even- tually resulting in the arrival of a continental

  10. Evolving subduction zones in the Western United States, as interpreted from igneous rocks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lipman, P.W.; Prostka, H.J.; Christiansen, R.L.

    1971-01-01

    Variations in the ratio of K2O to SiO4 in andesitic rocks suggest early and middle Cenozoic subduction beneath the western United States along two subparallel imbricate zones dipping about 20 degrees eastward. The western zone emerged at the continental margin, but the eastern zone was entirely beneath the continental plate. Mesozoic subduction apparently occurred along a single steeper zone.

  11. Nitrogen isotopes in ophiolitic metagabbros: A re-evaluation of modern nitrogen fluxes in subduction zones and implication for the early Earth atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Busigny, Vincent; Cartigny, Pierre; Philippot, Pascal

    2011-12-01

    Nitrogen contents and isotope compositions together with major and trace element concentrations were determined in a sequence of metagabbros from the western Alps (Europe) in order to constrain the evolution and behavior of N during hydrothermal alteration on the seafloor and progressive dehydration during subduction in a cold slab environment (8 °C/km). The rocks investigated include: (i) low-strain metagabbros that equilibrated under greenschist to amphibolite facies (Chenaillet Massif), blueschist facies (Queyras region) and eclogite facies (Monviso massif) conditions and (ii) highly-strained mylonites and associated eclogitic veins from the Monviso Massif. In all samples, nitrogen (2.6-55 ppm) occurs as bound ammonium ( NH4+) substituting for K or Na-Ca in minerals. Cu concentrations show a large variation, from 73.2 to 6.4 ppm, and are used as an index of hydrothermal alteration on the seafloor because of Cu fluid-mobility at relatively high temperature (>300 °C). In low-strain metagabbros, ?15N values of +0.8‰ to +8.1‰ are negatively correlated with Cu concentrations. Eclogitic mylonites and veins display Cu concentrations lower than 11 ppm and show a ?15N-Cu relationship that does not match the ?15N-Cu correlation found in low-strain rocks. This ?15N-Cu correlation preserved in low-strain rocks is best interpreted by leaching of Cu-N compounds, possibly of the form Cu(NH 3) 22+, during hydrothermal alteration. Recognition that the different types of low-strain metagabbros show the same ?15N-Cu correlation indicates that fluid release during subduction zone metamorphism did not modify the original N and Cu contents of the parent hydrothermally-altered metagabbros. In contrast, the low Cu content present in eclogitic veins and mylonites implies that ductile deformation and veining were accompanied either by a loss of copper or that externally-derived nitrogen was added to the system. We estimate the global annual flux of N subducted by metagabbros as 4.2 (±2.0) × 10 11 g/yr. This value is about half that of sedimentary rocks, which suggests that gabbros carry a significant portion of the subducted nitrogen. The net budget between subducted N and that outgassed at volcanic arcs indicates that ˜80% of the subducted N is not recycled to the surface. On a global scale, the total amount of N buried to the mantle via subduction zones is estimated to be three times higher than that released from the mantle via mid-ocean ridges, arc and intraplate volcanoes and back-arc basins. This implies that N contained in Earth surface reservoirs, mainly in the atmosphere, is progressively transferred and sequestered into the mantle, with a net flux of ˜9.6 × 10 11 g/yr. Assuming a constant flux of subducted N over the Earth's history indicates that an amount equivalent to the present atmospheric N may have been sequestered into the silicate Earth over a period of 4 billion years.

  12. Pattern and kinematic polarity of late Mesozoic extension in continental NE Asia: Perspectives from metamorphic core complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Tao; Zheng, Yadong; Zhang, Jinjiang; Zeng, Lingsen; Donskaya, Tatiana; Guo, Lei; Li, Jianbo

    2011-12-01

    Late Mesozoic extension in NE Asia resulted in the development of a large extensional province. Metamorphic core complexes (MCCs) are the major features in this province and have 40Ar/39Ar ages of 130-110 Ma for the mylonites and U-Pb zircon ages of 150-110 Ma for the integral granitic intrusions. Based on this and previous studies, this paper summarizes major characteristics of these MCCs and recognizes a regional kinematic shear sense. Most MCCs in the Transbaikalia region, Sino-Mongolia border tract, and the northwest-central portion of the North China craton (NCC) show a top-to-the-southeast (SE) shear, whereas those in the eastern and southern NCC locally underwent top-to-the-northwest (NW) shear. The three largest basins (Songliao, Huabei and Ordos) in North China are located in the transitional zone between domains of opposing shear sense. We interpret the extension in the Transbaikalia, Sino-Mongolia tract and northwestern part of the NCC to reflect late-orogenic collapse of thickened crust following Middle-Late Jurassic collision along the Okhotsk suture. The southeastward extension is probably controlled by crustal-scale top-to-the-SE tangential shear. The transition from contraction to extension is marked by detachment faults that nucleated as extensional crenulation cleavage (ecc, i.e., C') in sub-horizontal ductile shear zones late in orogenic crustal thickening. The combined effect of gravitational loading and thermal-uplifting is considered to be the origin of the late-or post-orogenic collapse. The top-to-the-NW extension in the NE of the NCC might reflect antithetic sub-extensional zones or Mesozoic back-arc extension as a far-field effect of Cretaceous Pacific plate subduction.

  13. The impact of splay faults on fluid flow, solute transport, and pore pressure distribution in subduction zones: A case study offshore the Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lauer, Rachel M.; Saffer, Demian M.

    2015-04-01

    Observations of seafloor seeps on the continental slope of many subduction zones illustrate that splay faults represent a primary hydraulic connection to the plate boundary at depth, carry deeply sourced fluids to the seafloor, and are in some cases associated with mud volcanoes. However, the role of these structures in forearc hydrogeology remains poorly quantified. We use a 2-D numerical model that simulates coupled fluid flow and solute transport driven by fluid sources from tectonically driven compaction and smectite transformation to investigate the effects of permeable splay faults on solute transport and pore pressure distribution. We focus on the Nicoya margin of Costa Rica as a case study, where previous modeling and field studies constrain flow rates, thermal structure, and margin geology. In our simulations, splay faults accommodate up to 33% of the total dewatering flux, primarily along faults that outcrop within 25 km of the trench. The distribution and fate of dehydration-derived fluids is strongly dependent on thermal structure, which determines the locus of smectite transformation. In simulations of a cold end-member margin, smectite transformation initiates 30 km from the trench, and 64% of the dehydration-derived fluids are intercepted by splay faults and carried to the middle and upper slope, rather than exiting at the trench. For a warm end-member, smectite transformation initiates 7 km from the trench, and the associated fluids are primarily transmitted to the trench via the décollement (50%), and faults intercept only 21% of these fluids. For a wide range of splay fault permeabilities, simulated fluid pressures are near lithostatic where the faults intersect overlying slope sediments, providing a viable mechanism for the formation of mud volcanoes.

  14. Metamorphic probing of subduction dynamics and rheology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Agard, Philippe

    2015-04-01

    Understanding subduction dynamics and rheology, and particularly the role of fluids and deformation, strongly relies on integrated tectonic, petrological and geochemical studies able to retrieve from our most direct and reliable natural probes (i.e., preserved metamorphic assemblages) their pressure-temperature-time (P-T-t) evolution. I first provide two examples of such integrated studies that allow tracking rock trajectories and exhumation dynamics in subduction zones -- thanks to the considerable progress made over the last ten years on estimating P-T-t conditions. The Oman example shows how EPMA mapping and the detailed study of local, low-temperature equilibria help constrain the behaviour and dynamics of upper crustal units during continental subduction, demonstrating the importance of slicing, accretion at depths of ~30 km and short-lived tectonic expulsion. In the Western Alps, the extensive coverage of field exposures by means of the Raman Spectrometry of carbonaceous matter and by dedicated pseudosection modelling allows to identify the existence of tens of km long, fairly continuous slices of downgoing slab exhumed from similar eclogitic depths (~80 km), and to assess the role of the overall fluid content in enabling their exhumation/preservation. I then illustrate how metamorphic rocks can provide ideal probes (though still partly to be improved) to address key, large-scale tectonic processes and not 'simply' histories, and do stress the importance of adequate field-based data acquisition. Three examples (and present-day limitations) are reviewed here: (1) The regional-scale exhumation of blueschists from the downdip end of the seismogenic zone across thousands of kilometers along the Neotethys (at ~1-1.5 GPa, 350°C) is a major geodynamic event providing insights into changes in interplate mechanical coupling and subduction dynamics. (2) Eclogite breccias recently reported in the Monviso area (W. Alps) allow constraining short-term processes involving seismogenesis, fluid migration (and its duration), fluid fluxes and will help improve our general understanding of the earthquake 'factory' (at ~2.6 GPa, 550°C). (3) Amphibolite to granulite-facies metamorphic soles (i.e., ~500m thick tectonic slices welded to the base of ophiolites) provide specific insights into the rheology of nascent subduction, as their accretion is restricted to a transient, optimal P-T-t window (at 1±0.2 GPa, 750-850°C, after < 1-2 My) during which fluid release and infiltration lead to similar effective rheology on both sides of the plate interface (i.e., downgoing crust and mantle wedge). This transient though universal episode maximizes interplate mechanical coupling and ultimately promotes the detachment of the sole from the sinking slab. For all three examples above, one should emphasize the need for a better assessment of the P-T stability of (the complex solid solutions of) amphiboles, which would represent a major breakthrough for our further understanding of subduction dynamics and rheology.

  15. The dynamics of serpentinite dehydration reactions in subduction zones: Constrains from the Cerro del Almirez ultramafic massif (Betic Cordillera, SE Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dilissen, Nicole; Garrido, Carlos J.; López Sánchez-Vizcaíno, Vicente; Padrón-Navarta, José Alberto

    2015-04-01

    Arc volcanism, earthquakes and subduction dynamics are controlled by fluids from downgoing slabs and their effect on the melting and rheology of the overlying mantle wedge. High pressure dehydration of serpentinite in the slab and the subduction channel is considered as one of the main sources of fluids in subduction zones. Even though this metamorphic reaction is essential in subduction activities, the behavior of the fluids, the kinetics and thermodynamics during the breakdown reaction are still poorly understood. The Cerro del Almirez (Nevado-Filábride Complex, Betic Cordillera, SE Spain) uniquely preserves the dehydration front from antigorite serpentinite to chlorite-harzburgite and constitutes a unique natural laboratory to investigate high-pressure dehydration of serpentinite. This reaction occurred in a subduction setting releasing up to 13 wt% of water, contributing significantly to the supply of fluids to the overlying mantle wedge. A key to the understanding of the metamorphic conditions prevailing during serpentinite dehydration is to study the two prominent textures -granofels and spinifex-like chlorite harzburgite- occurring in this reaction product. The detailed texture differences in the Chl-harzburgite can provide insights into diverse kinetic and thermodynamic conditions of this dehydration reaction due to variations in effective pressure and drainage conditions. It has been proposed that difference in overpressure (P') and deviation from growth equilibrium, i.e. overstepping, is responsible for these two types of textures [Padrón-Navarta et al., 2011]. The magnitude and duration of P' is highly dependent on dehydration kinetics [Connolly, 1997]. The fast pressure drop, with spinifex-texture as a product, can be linked to draining events expected after hydrofracturing, which are recorded in grain size reduction zones in this massif. According to this hypothesis, mapping of textural variation in Chl-harzburgite might be used as a proxy to investigate the hydrodynamics of serpentinite dehydration reaction. During an intensive detailed field mapping of a well-exposed area of ca. 0.87 km2 in the W-SW part of the massif, we mapped textural variations of Chl-harzburgite every three to ten meters. Granofels and spinifex lenses occur within scales of decimetres to decametres. These spatial scale constrains can be linked to temporal scales of the reactions and to the spatial and temporal variation of fluid release during dehydration of serpentinite. REFERENCES Connolly, J. A. D. (1997), Devolatilization-generated fluid pressure and deformation-propagated fluid flow during prograde regional metamorphism, J. Geophys. Res.-Solid Earth, 102(B8), 18149-18173, doi:10.1029/97jb00731. Padrón-Navarta, J. A., V. López Sánchez-Vizcaíno, C. J. Garrido, and M. T. Gómez-Pugnaire (2011), Metamorphic record of high-pressure dehydration of antigorite serpentinite to chlorite harzburgite in a subduction setting (Cerro del Almirez, Nevado-Filábride Complex, southern Spain), Journal of Petrology, 52(10), 2047-2078.

  16. Spatiotemporal variations of the slow slip event between 2008 and 2013 in the southcentral Alaska subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fu, Yuning; Liu, Zhen; Freymueller, Jeffrey T.

    2015-07-01

    We apply a Kalman filter-based time-dependent slip inversion method to model a long-term Slow Slip Event (SSE) in the southcentral Alaska subduction zone from 2008 to 2013. This event occurred downdip of the asperity that ruptured in the 1964 earthquake, the same part of plate interface that slipped during a previous SSE between 1998 and 2001. Most of the slip deficit that accumulated during the steady period between 2001 and 2008 (8 years total) in the SSE source region was released by this SSE. Our results indicate both lateral and downdip propagation during this event. The SSE started at the end of 2008 at the upper section of the slip patch, and gradually propagated to the east and to the deeper part of the interface. Our results indicate no connection between this SSE in Upper Cook Inlet and another SSE in Lower Cook Inlet that started in 2010. Analysis of the earthquake catalog in the southcentral Alaska subduction zone shows a clear increase in seismicity associated with the 2008-2013 SSE. With the data from a newly available continuous GPS site, we now can better constrain the start time of the 1998-2001 SSE as ˜1998.58.

  17. Construction of semi-dynamic model of subduction zone with given plate kinematics in 3D sphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morishige, M.; Honda, S.; Tackley, P. J.

    2010-09-01

    We present a semi-dynamic subduction zone model in a three-dimensional spherical shell. In this model, velocity is imposed on the top surface and in a small three-dimensional region around the shallow plate boundary while below this region, the slab is able to subduct under its own weight. Surface plate velocities are given by Euler's theorem of rigid plate rotation on a sphere. The velocity imposed in the region around the plate boundary is determined so that mass conservation inside the region is satisfied. A kinematic trench migration can be easily incorporated in this model. As an application of this model, mantle flow around slab edges is considered, and we find that the effect of Earth curvature is small by comparing our model with a similar one in a rectangular box, at least for the parameters used in this study. As a second application of the model, mantle flow around a plate junction is studied, and we find the existence of mantle return flow perpendicular to the plate boundary. Since this model can naturally incorporate the spherical geometry and plate movement on the sphere, it is useful for studying a specific subduction zone where the plate kinematics is well constrained.

  18. Radiocarbon evidence for extensive plate-boundary rupture about 300 years ago at the Cascadia subduction zone

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nelson, A.R.; Atwater, B.F.; Bobrowsky, P.T.; Bradley, L.-A.; Clague, J.J.; Carver, G.A.; Darienzo, M.E.; Grant, W.C.; Krueger, H.W.; Sparks, R.; Stafford, Thomas W., Jr.; Stuiver, M.

    1995-01-01

    THE Cascadia subduction zone, a region of converging tectonic plates along the Pacific coast of North America, has a geological history of very large plate-boundary earthquakes1,2, but no such earthquakes have struck this region since Euro-American settlement about 150 years ago. Geophysical estimates of the moment magnitudes (Mw) of the largest such earthquakes range from 8 (ref. 3).to 91/2 (ref. 4). Radiocarbon dating of earthquake-killed vegetation can set upper bounds on earthquake size by constraining the length of plate boundary that ruptured in individual earthquakes. Such dating has shown that the most recent rupture, or series of ruptures, extended at least 55 km along the Washington coast within a period of a few decades about 300 years ago5. Here we report 85 new 14C ages, which suggest that this most recent rupture (or series) extended at least 900 km between southern British Columbia and northern California. By comparing the 14C ages with written records of the past 150 years, we conclude that a single magnitude 9 earthquake, or a series of lesser earthquakes, ruptured most of the length of the Cascadia subduction zone between the late 1600s and early 1800s, and probably in the early 1700s.

  19. Revisiting viscoelastic effects on interseismic deformation and locking degree: A case study of the Peru-North Chile subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Shaoyang; Moreno, Marcos; Bedford, Jonathan; Rosenau, Matthias; Oncken, Onno

    2015-06-01

    Viscoelastic effects potentially play an important role during all phases of the earthquake cycle in subduction zones. However, most current models neglect such effects in the interseismic deformation pattern. Here we use finite element method (FEM) models to investigate the control of viscoelasticity on interseismic deformation and to highlight the pitfalls of interpreting the data with purely elastic models for both the forward and inverse problems. Our results confirm that elastic models are prone to overestimating the interseismic locking depth, a crucial parameter for estimating the maximum possible earthquake magnitude. The application of the viscoelastic model improves the fit to the interseismic deformation, especially in the inland area. Additionally, we construct 3-D FEM models constrained by geophysical and GPS data and apply our methodology to the Peru-North Chile subduction zone. Our results indicate that viscoelastic effects contribute significantly to the observed GPS data. The signals interpreted as back-arc shortening in the elastic model can be alternatively explained by viscoelastic deformation, which, in turn, dramatically refines the interseismic locking pattern in both dip and strike directions. Our viscoelastic locking map exhibits excellent correlation with the slip distributions of previous earthquakes, especially the recent 2014 Mw 8.1 Iquique earthquake. The incorrect elastic assumptions affect the analysis of interseismic deformation with respect to slip deficit calculations. Our results thus suggest that it is necessary to thoroughly reevaluate existing locking models that are based on purely elastic models, some of which attribute viscoelastic deformation to different sources such as microplate sliver motions.

  20. Redox-variability and controls in subduction zones from an iron-isotope perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nebel, O.; Sossi, P. A.; Bénard, A.; Wille, M.; Vroon, P. Z.; Arculus, R. J.

    2015-12-01

    An ongoing controversy in mantle geochemistry concerns the oxidation state of the sources of island arc lavas (IAL). Three key factors control oxidation-reduction (redox) of IAL sources: (i) metasomatism of the mantle wedge by fluids and/or melts, liberated from the underlying subducted slab; (ii) the oxidation state of the wedge prior to melting and metasomatism; and (iii) the loss of melt from IAL sources. Subsequently, magmatic differentiation by fractional crystallisation, possible crustal contamination and degassing of melts en route to and at the surface can further modify the redox states of IAL. The remote nature of sub-arc processes and the complex interplay between them render direct investigations difficult. However, a possible gauge for redox-controlled, high-temperature pre-eruptive differentiation conditions is variations in stable Fe isotope compositions (expressed here as ?57Fe) in erupting IAL because Fe isotopes can preserve a record of sub-surface mass transfer reactions involving the major element Fe. Here we report Fe isotope compositions of bulk IAL along the active Banda arc, Indonesia, which is well known for a prominent subducted sediment input. In conjunction with other arc rocks, ?57Fe in erupted Banda IAL indicates that fractional crystallisation and possibly crustal contamination primarily control their Fe isotope signatures. When corrected for fractional crystallisation and filtered for contamination, arc magmas that had variable sediment melt contributions in their sources show no resolvable co-variation of ?57Fe with radiogenic isotope tracers. This indicates that crustal recycling in the form of subducted sediment does not alter the Fe isotope character of arc lavas, in agreement with mass balance estimates. Primitive sources of IAL, however, are clearly isotopically lighter than those sourced beneath mid-ocean ridges, indicating either preferential Fe3+-depletion in the mantle wedge by prior, ?57Fe-heavy melt extraction, and/or addition of an isotopically-light slab-derived agent. Based on our findings and previous models of arc redox conditions, we propose a three-stage process to explain the Fe isotope composition of IAL: (i) prior melt depletion lowers Fe3+/?Fe (Fe3+ over total Fe) in the residues, leaving refractory, ?57Fe-light and possibly reduced mantle wedge protoliths beneath arcs. The oxygen fugacity (fO2) of these refractory protoliths may be up to -2 log10 units reduced relative to the fayalite-magnetite-quartz synthetic oxygen buffer (?FMQ); (ii) oxidised, slab-derived fluids, Fe-poor but possibly rich in sulphate (i.e., S6+), trigger melting of depleted protoliths with minimal effect on ?57Fe. Melts derived from this fluid-modified wedge source have high Fe3+/?Fe, oxidised by the reduction of S6+, but importantly retain the light ?57Fe from their mantle wedge source; (iii) after melt liberation from the mantle wedge, arc magmas initially become progressively oxidised and isotopically heavier in Fe through fractional crystallisation of ferromagnesian silicates. In summary, reduction consequent to Fe3+-rich melt extraction and subsequent oxidation, likely by S6+-rich fluids, results in a "redox yo-yo" in IAL sources. Fractional crystallisation will further oxidise and elevate ?57Fe in erupting IAL. Iron isotope signatures in IAL record a complex magmatic history with no simple relation between ?57Fe and calculated fO2 in erupted lavas. Records of higher fO2 in subduction zones compared to MORB sources are inherited from the subduction component.

  1. The impact of thick subduction zone sediment input sections on earthquake and tsunami potential

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McNeill, L. C.; Smith, G. L.; Henstock, T.

    2012-12-01

    The role of input sediments at subduction zones in controlling fault properties and seismogenic behavior is an ongoing focus area of geohazard research. This includes the effect of sediment burying oceanic basement topography, smoothing the plate interface and reducing the potential for earthquake rupture-stopping barriers. The impact of extremely thick sediment sections on the position of the updip limit of the seismogenic zone has, however, not been examined in detail. At some margins, convergent margin seismicity (including recent megathrust ruptures, aftershocks, and smaller magnitude plate boundary earthquakes) has recorded activity on the plate boundary significantly further seaward than conventionally expected, i.e., beneath the prism and extending close to the trench. Example margins include those with very thick input sediment sections e.g., North Sumatra and Makran, where trench sediment thicknesses reach 5-7 km. These results prove that the accretionary wedge can behave seismogenically, resulting in a potentially significant impact on rupture width, and earthquake and tsunami magnitude. On the North Sumatra margin, rupture during the 2004 earthquake propagated far seaward beneath the prism with possible evidence for aftershock activity to the trench. On the Makran margin, several 20th Century M5-8 earthquakes appear to originate from the plate boundary beneath the outer/offshore prism, including a M 8 earthquake in 1945, but this margin's seismic and tsunamigenic hazard potential has often been under-acknowledged. The base of the input sediment sections at these two margins are dense and likely lithified, hence not conforming to the expectation of thick sediment sections being overpressured and weak. In addition, the accreted sediments of the North Sumatran prism interior are high density. Thermal modeling of the Makran margin, with the thickest global sediment input section and the widest prism, places the 150°C isotherm or updip seismogenic limit at the trench, generating a wide, partly offshore seismogenic zone beneath the accretionary prism. Integrating an estimated rupture width from thermal structure of the plate boundary with likely rupture length and slip scenarios, generates potential M8.5-9 earthquakes on this margin. Similar thermal modeling of the North Sumatra margin places the updip limit ~30-40 km landward of the trench, broadly in agreement with slip models for the 2004 earthquake and placing a significant part of the seismogenic zone beneath the accretionary prism. This position coincides with structural and morphological changes thought to relate to changes in internal prism and basal fault properties. For subduction plate boundary rupture, the seaward extent of the seismogenic zone has implications for tsunami generation with potential for an increased submarine rupture area and rupture in deeper water. These examples support the idea that the morphology and structure of the forearc can be used to assess the position of the updip seismogenic limit and suggest that other margins with very thick sediment input should be carefully examined for their seismic potential.

  2. Transient Landscape Response to Increased Coupling Across a Subduction Zone Interface, Talamanca Range, Costa Rica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sitchler, J. C.; Kirby, E.; Fisher, D. M.

    2006-12-01

    Deconvolving the interactions between climate, erosion and tectonics requires understanding the processes and characteristic timescales of the response of erosional systems to perturbations in external forcing. Although readily studied in numerical simulations, few natural field sites exist where one can examine system response to a change in tectonic forcing. Here we present one example from Costa Rica. The Cordillera de Talamanca (CT) is the highest mountain range in isthmian Central America, with peaks exceeding 3800 meters. The range is underlain by an extinct Miocene volcanic arc, and is, at present, amagmatic. The cessation of arc volcanism at ca. 3.5 Ma along the 170 km segment of the plate boundary is attributed to subduction of the thick, buoyant portion of the Cocos plate created at the Galapagos spreading center. Previous workers have concluded that active deformation of the upper plate, including subsidence of the outer forearc, shortening in the inner forearc (Fila Costena range), and uplift of the arc itself reflects an increased coupling across the subduction zone interface. Presently, this coupling culminates inboard of the aseismic Cocos Ridge, which is subducting near-orthogonally to the Middle America Trench (MAT). Based on tectonic reconstructions, the collision of the CR axis occurred at ca. 1-2 Ma when the triple junction related to the subducting Panama Fracture Zone migrated southeast past the present position of the ridge. The implications of this ridge-trench collision for landscape evolution in the CT have been largely unexplored. We evaluate the impact of this recent tectonic perturbation on the erosional system by characterizing the longitudinal channel form of drainages that extend from the isthmian divide to the backarc basin in the CT using a digital elevation model. Channels throughout the Talamanca range exhibit distinct, non-equilibrium longitudinal profiles, characterized by a low-gradient upper reach separated from a steep, incised lower reach by a convex knickpoint. Hillslope gradients mimic this pattern, in that the landscape above knickpoints is characterized by low topographic relief. Knickpoints throughout the range are confined to a fairly narrow elevation range clustered around 2000 m, well below the ice extent of the last glacial maximum, and a preliminary analysis suggests that they are not strongly influenced by mapped lithologic differences. The uniform elevation distribution leads us to infer that these knickpoints define a mobile boundary between predominately low-gradient relict landscapes in the upper reaches of streams and relatively high-gradient (on the order of 2 to 3 times steeper) landscape in the lower reaches of the CT that is adjusting to a new (higher) incision rate. These initial observations are consistent with a simple model of a step-function increase in regional uplift rate, and subsequent transient fluvial response to the relative base level change. Downstream projection of the relict fluvial profiles suggests 1-1.5 km of incision, which we infer to represent rock uplift since the collision of the CR at ca. 1-2 Ma. Ongoing research is focused on accounting for evolving orographic precipitation and spatial patterns of rock uplift. However, our preliminary results indicate that the Talamanca range have experienced significant surface uplift at their crest as a consequence of subduction of the Cocos Ridge.

  3. Volatile (H2O, CO2, Cl, S) budget of the Central American subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Freundt, A.; Grevemeyer, I.; Rabbel, W.; Hansteen, T. H.; Hensen, C.; Wehrmann, H.; Kutterolf, S.; Halama, R.; Frische, M.

    2014-02-01

    After more than a decade of multidisciplinary studies of the Central American subduction zone mainly in the framework of two large research programmes, the US MARGINS program and the German Collaborative Research Center SFB 574, we here review and interpret the data pertinent to quantify the cycling of mineral-bound volatiles (H2O, CO2, Cl, S) through this subduction system. For input-flux calculations, we divide the Middle America Trench into four segments differing in convergence rate and slab lithological profiles, use the latest evidence for mantle serpentinization of the Cocos slab approaching the trench, and for the first time explicitly include subduction erosion of forearc basement. Resulting input fluxes are 40-62 (53) Tg/Ma/m H2O, 7.8-11.4 (9.3) Tg/Ma/m CO2, 1.3-1.9 (1.6) Tg/Ma/m Cl, and 1.3-2.1 (1.6) Tg/Ma/m S (bracketed are mean values for entire trench length). Output by cold seeps on the forearc amounts to 0.625-1.25 Tg/Ma/m H2O partly derived from the slab sediments as determined by geochemical analyses of fluids and carbonates. The major volatile output occurs at the Central American volcanic arc that is divided into ten arc segments by dextral strike-slip tectonics. Based on volcanic edifice and widespread tephra volumes as well as calculated parental magma masses needed to form observed evolved compositions, we determine long-term (105 years) average magma and K2O fluxes for each of the ten segments as 32-242 (106) Tg/Ma/m magma and 0.28-2.91 (1.38) Tg/Ma/m K2O (bracketed are mean values for entire Central American volcanic arc length). Volatile/K2O concentration ratios derived from melt inclusion analyses and petrologic modelling then allow to calculate volatile fluxes as 1.02-14.3 (6.2) Tg/Ma/m H2O, 0.02-0.45 (0.17) Tg/Ma/m CO2, and 0.07-0.34 (0.22) Tg/Ma/m Cl. The same approach yields long-term sulfur fluxes of 0.12-1.08 (0.54) Tg/Ma/m while present-day open-vent SO2-flux monitoring yields 0.06-2.37 (0.83) Tg/Ma/m S. Input-output comparisons show that the arc water fluxes only account for up to 40 % of the input even if we include an "invisible" plutonic component constrained by crustal growth. With 20-30 % of the H2O input transferred into the deeper mantle as suggested by petrologic modeling, there remains a deficiency of, say, 30-40 % in the water budget. At least some of this water is transferred into two upper-plate regions of low seismic velocity and electrical resistivity whose sizes vary along arc: one region widely envelopes the melt ascent paths from slab top to arc and the other extends obliquely from the slab below the forearc to below the arc. Whether these reservoirs are transient or steady remains unknown.

  4. Neotectonics of the Sumatran Fault and paleogeodesy of the Sumatran subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Natawidjaja, Danny Hilman

    Under the Sumatran plate boundary the Australian-Indian plate is subductiog at about 60 mm/yr in the direction N11°E. The oblique convergence is partitioned into trench-parallel slip---accommodated largely by the Sumatran fault zone and trench-perpendicular slip---accommodated by the subduction zone. Our detailed map of the Sumatran fault zone (SFZ) shows that the Sumatran fault is highly segmented. The influence of these fault segmentations on historical seismic source dimensions suggests that the dimensions of future events will also be influenced by fault geometry. The largest geomorphic offsets along the Sumatran fault zone are about 20 km, and may represent the total offset across the fault. If so, the present SFZ may just be 2 Ma old. The shape and location of the Sumatran fault and the active volcanic arc are highly correlated with the shape and character of the underlying subductiog oceanic lithosphere. We utilize coral microatolls in west Sumatra to document evidence for deformation of the underlying subduction interface. Microatolls are very sensitive to fluctuations in sea level, and thus act as natural tide gauges. They record not only the magnitude of vertical deformation associated with earthquakes (paleoseismic data), but also continuously track long-term aseismic deformation that occurs during intervals between earthquakes (paleogeodetic data). Numerous microatolls from the region around the equator record a simple pattern of tilt away from the trench axis in 1935 related to an Mw7.7 earthquake. About 115 km from the trench axis, uplift was nil. Nearer to the trench, uplift progressively increased trench-ward to at least 90 cm. Farther than 115 km from the trench, submergence of up to 35 cm occurred. We model these paleogeodetic data by a 2.3 m slip event on the interface between 88 and 125 km from the trench axis. A large aseismic event or "silent earthquake" in 1962 is among the most interesting phenomena discovered in the coral record, and is the second largest short-lived event recorded throughout the equatorial region. Furthermore, paleogeodetic data reveal that the interseismic deformation rates have varied both temporally and spatially. For two centuries prior to 1935, the rates of long-term submergence above the soon-to-fail rupture were relatively low, indicative of rapid aseismic slip on the subjacent subduction interface. During the 25 years following the 1935 event, submergence rates dramatically increased. Modeling of these data suggests that much of the patch that ruptured in 1935 locked up in the decades after the earthquake. For the last four decades, the rates above the 1935 rupture have been lower than they were in two and half decades following the 1935 event, but are higher still than they were in the decades prior to 1935.

  5. Structure of the Lesser Antilles subduction zone from seismic refraction tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Charvis, P.; Evain, M.; Galve, A.; Laigle, M.; Ruiz Fernandez, M.; Kopp, H.; Hirn, A.; Flueh, E. R.; Party, T.

    2011-12-01

    In 2007, two wide-angle seismic experiments were conducted to constrain the structure of the central Lesser Antilles subduction zone. During the Sismantilles II experiment, seismic refraction data recorded by a network of 27 OBSs over an area of more than 6000 km2 provide new insights on the crustal structure of the forearc offshore Martinique and Dominica islands. The tomographic inversion of first arrival travel times provides a 3D P-wave velocity model down to 15 km. Basement velocity gradient shows the forearc made of two distinct units: A high velocity gradient domain named the inner forearc in comparison to a lower velocity gradient domain located further trenchward named the outer forearc. The inner forearc is likely the extension at depth of the Mesozoic magmatic crust outcropping to the north in La Désirade Island and along the scarp of the Karukera spur and then represent the eastern limit of the Caribbean Plateau. The outer forearc probably consists of magmatic rocks of a similar origin. It could be either part of the margin of the Caribbean Plateau, like the inner forearc, but the crust was thinned and fractured during the past tectonic history of the area or by recent subduction processes, or an oceanic terrane more recently accreted to the island arc. Whereas the inner forearc appears as a rigid block uplifted and tilted as a whole to the south, short wavelength deformations of the outer forearc basement are observed, beneath a 3 to 6 km thick sedimentary pile, in relation with the subduction of the Tiburon ridge and associated seamounts. North, offshore Dominica Island, the outer forearc is 70 km wide. It extends as far as 180 km to the east of the volcanic front where it acts as a backstop on which the accretionary wedge developed. Its width decreases strongly to the south to terminate offshore Martinique where the inner forearc acts as the backstop. Two dense wide-angle seismic refraction lines, shot during the Trail experiment (2007) provides a 2D velocity model across the whole arc north and south of Dominica Island. Wide-angle reflection travel times were inverted to constrain the deepest interfaces. It appears that the overriding plate is characterized by a thick crust, the Moho interface being at 30 km depth along both profile. To the south, an intra-crustal interface 20 km deep that strikes only beneath the inner forearc region is also imaged separating the upper crust from the lower crust. The Lesser Antilles Thales scientific party is composed of Bayrakci, G., Bécel, A., Charvis, P., Diaz, J., Evain, M., Flueh, E., Gallart, J., Gailler, A., Galve, A., Hello, Y., Hirn, A., Kopp, H., Krabbenhoeft, A., Laigle, M., Lebrun, J. F., Monfret, T., Papenberg, C., Planert, L., Ruiz, M., Sapin, M., Weinzierl, W.

  6. In situ Raman study of dissolved CaCO3 minerals under subduction zone conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Facq, S.; Daniel, I.; Sverjensky, D. A.

    2012-12-01

    The fate and the characteristics of the Earth's deep carbon reservoirs are still not well understood [1]. The connection between the surficial and the deep-Earth carbon cycles occurs at subduction zones where carbon is transported into the mantle and where hydrous silicates and carbonate minerals break down releasing H2O and C-species in fluids associated with mantle metasomatism and the generation of arc volcanism [2]. In order to obtain mass balance between recycling and burial in the deep mantle, the study of the dissolution of CaCO3 minerals in equilibrium with aqueous fluids under mantle conditions is crucial. We report a novel integrated experimental and theoretical study of the equilibration of CaCO3 minerals with aqueous solutions (pure water or NaCl solutions) at high pressures and temperatures (0.5 to 8 GPa and 250 to 500 °C). The fluid speciation was studied using in situ Raman spectroscopy coupled to an externally heated membrane type DAC equipped with 500 ?m pure synthetic diamond anvils. In a typical experiment, the aqueous fluid and a calcite crystal [3] were loaded in a rhenium gasket. The pressure was determined from the calibrated shift of the carbonate ?1 symmetric stretching mode of aragonite and the temperature measured with a K-type thermocouple. Raman spectra were recorded using a Labram HR800 Raman spectrometer (Horiba Jobin-Yvon) coupled to a Spectra Physics Ar+ laser. At equilibrium with an aragonite crystal, the Raman data show that bicarbonate is the most abundant species in low-pressure fluids (below 4 GPa) whereas carbonate becomes progressively dominant at higher pressure. After correction from their Raman cross-sections [4], the relative amounts of dissolved carbonate and bicarbonate were estimated from the areas of the Raman bands of the carbonate and bicarbonate ions (?1 and ?5 symmetric stretching modes, respectively). The presence of sodium chloride influences the speciation by extending the pressure field where the bicarbonate species is dominant in the fluid. The Raman data were also used to constrain a theoretical thermodynamic model of the fluid speciation in equilibrium with CaCO3. Building on published calcite solubility data from 400 - 700 °C and 2 - 16 kb [3, 5], revised thermodynamic properties of aqueous CO2 and HCO3-, data for the aqueous CaHCO3+ complex from 4 to 90 °C [6], and estimated dielectric constants of water, enabled an equation of state characterization of the standard Gibbs free energy of CaHCO3+ at the conditions of the Raman study. At 300 - 400 °C, the Raman speciation results were used to constrain equilibrium constants involving the carbonate ion. The results indicate that CO2 is a minor species in fluids in equilibrium with aragonite at 300 - 500 °C and P > 1.0 GPa. Instead, the CaHCO3+ species becomes important at high pressures until carbonate ion becomes the dominant C-species. [1] Marty, B. and Tolstikhin, I.N., Chemical Geology 145, 233 (1998) [2] Schmidt, M.W. and Poli, S., Earth and Planetary Science Letters 163, 163 (1998) [3] Caciagli, N.C. and Manning, C.E., Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology 146, 275 (2003) [4] Frantz, J., Chemical Geology 152, 211 (1998) [5] Fein, J.B. and Walther, J.V., Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology 103, 317 (1989) [6] Plummer, L.N. and Busenberg, E., Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 46, 1011 (1982)

  7. Effect of slab dehydration on the mantle wedge dynamics in subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arcay, D.; Doin, M. P.; Tric, E.

    2003-04-01

    In oceanic subduction zones, dehydration of slab's minerals might partly explain back-arc spreading and its initiation within the volcanic arc. While the slab enters the asthenosphere, it releases water which hydrates the asthenosphere and might significantly decrease its viscosity. This should develop the corner flow, and warm the overriding lithosphere. If the induced thermal erosion lasts, an extensive stress will locally appear. In a first step numerical experiments were performed to understand what controls the mechanical evolution of cold subduction. Our thermomechanical model combines a non-Newtonian viscous rheology and a pseudo-brittle rheology, as a function of depth, temperature and stress, both for an oceanic crust and the mantle . The viscous parameters and the frictional coefficient for the mantle are in good agreement with laboratory measurements, whereas we imposed a very low frictional coefficient in the oceanic crust to maintain low stresses on the subduction plane (f_s? 0.008) and, in some simulations, a maximum yield stress of 30 MPa in the mantle. These preliminary simulations show firstly that dissipation energy modifies the dip angle of subduction and reduces the global force necessary to subduct and secondly that, even without dehydration, a corner flow appears rapidly (at 2 My) with velocity of 5±2 cm/y and erodes thermally the overriding lithosphere by about 12 km after 5 My. In our dehydration modelling, the released water comes from the oceanic crust, and the altered peridotite of the slab. This peridotite is believed to be serpentinized at the mid-ocean ridge and along normal faults during bending near the trench, and can be 5 to 20 km thick. We use accurate phase diagrams for H_2O-satured mantle peridotite and a gabbroic crust to determine at each time step the amount of water released or absorbed by each unit of rock. Transition phases are supposed to be not metastable. We assume that the rock viscosity decrease depends on the concentration in water. The viscosity of a H_2O-satured asthenospheric rock is at least 100 times less than that of a dry one, at a pressure of 3 kbars (Hirth and Kohlstedt, 1996). For cold subductions, simulations show a three-step dehydration of the subducting lithosphere. The crust releases its water at 74 km (blue schists destabilisation) and the top part of peridotite at 150 km (chlorite destablisation). In the bottom peridotite part serpentine transforms into phase A at 200 km whitout losing water. As P-T-t paths remain quite cold, only a small amount of water is liberated. However this water seems to be sufficient to hydrate the overlapping lithosphere over a significant volume (about 100 km wide and 50 km high) and increases the mantle corner concentration in water. Introducing a decrease in viscosity associated to the hydrated corner, we observe an increasing thermal erosion of the overlapping lithosphere.

  8. Combining seismic tomography and crustal plate reconstructions to better understand the origin of the Caribbean and the history of its subduction zones (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mann, P.; Norton, I. O.

    2013-12-01

    Most previous approaches to Caribbean tectonics have relied heavily on the jigsaw-like reconstruction of small and complexly deformed blocks of continental and arc crust sandwiched between the much larger North and South American plates along with estimations for the widths of oceanic and oceanic plateau areas consumed at subduction zones fringing the modern Caribbean plate. The advent and steady improvement of tomographic models capable of imaging deeply subducted and continuous slabs provides a more complete picture of the history of Caribbean plate motions and subduction processes than conventional plate reconstructions alone. In this presentation we compare the recent tomographic results of Benthem et al. (2013) with a quantitative Caribbean crustal plate model to reach conclusions concerning the initiation, duration and cessation of subduction zones and whether the Caribbean originated in the Pacific Ocean (mobilist view) or closer to its present inter-American location (fixist view). We assign four slabs to the NE or E entry of the Caribbean plate into the Interamerican area and invoke these slabs as supportive of the mobilist view of Caribbean evolution: 1) the longest, deepest and most continuously-imaged slab in the Caribbean is the eastward-dipping Farallon slab that can be traced over 2000 km from the western Caribbean to the western Atlantic Ocean; the Farallon slab represents an early to late Cretaceous phase of subduction beneath the Great Arc of the Caribbean (GAC), an intraoceanic arc that moved from west to east across the Pacific Ocean. The great length of the Farallon slab attests to the Pacific origin of the GAC which is now a major crustal component of the modern Caribbean plate; 2) the Lesser Antilles slab represents the result of a late Cretaceous polarity reversal from east-dipping subduction to west-dipping subduction beneath the GAC that is divided into two separate slabs with dips to the WNW (Southern Lesser Antilles) or WSW (Northern Lesser Antilles and Greater Antilles). The boundary between the two slabs is interpreted by Benthem et al. as the now-subducted North America-South America plate boundary. The length of both slabs in the range of 1100 km indicates an age of polarity reversal and subduction initiation at 60 Ma. 3) the east-dipping Cocos plate slab is 900-1000 km long and follows into the mantle the older, deeper Farallon slab; the Cocos plate represents a splitting of the Farallon plate in late Oligocene time and continued eastward subduction against the western margin of the consolidated plate. We assign the remaining short and recent Caribbean slabs (Muertos, Maracaibo) into a separate category: Cenozoic polarity reversals related to the east-facing GAC colliding with Caribbean passive margins. This latest phase of reversals did not play a role in the eastward transport of the Caribbean plate but instead acts to reduce the size of the Caribbean plate in a north-south direction.

  9. Thermo-rheological, shear heating model for leucogranite generation, metamorphism, and deformation during

    E-print Network

    Liu, Mian

    Thermo-rheological, shear heating model for leucogranite generation, metamorphism, and deformation Accepted 20 June 2001 Abstract This paper evaluates thermotectonic models for metamorphism and leucogranite of regional deformation and staurolite-grade regional metamorphism. Published Consortium for Continental

  10. Subduction-Driven Recycling of Continental Margin Lithosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levander, Alan; Bezada, Maximiliano; Niu, Fenglin; Palomeras, Imma; Thurner, Sally; Humphreys, Eugene; Carbonell, Ramon; Gallart, Josep; Schmitz, Michael; Miller, Meghan

    2015-04-01

    Subduction recycling of oceanic lithosphere, a central theme of plate tectonics, is relatively well understood, whereas recycling continental lithosphere is more difficult to recognize, and appears far more complicated. Delamination and localized convective downwelling are two widely recognized processes invoked to explain the removal of lithospheric mantle under or adjacent to orogenic belts. Here we describe another process that can lead to the loss of continental lithosphere adjacent to a subduction zone: Subducting oceanic plates can entrain and recycle lithospheric mantle from an adjacent continent and disrupt the continental lithosphere far inland from the subduction zone. Seismic images from recent dense broadband seismograph arrays in northeastern South America (SA) and in the western Mediterranean show higher than expected volumes of positive anomalies identified as the subducted Atlantic slab under northeastern SA, and the Alboran slab beneath the Gibraltar arc region (GA). The positive anomalies lie under and are aligned with the continental margins at depths greater than 200 km. Closer to the surface we find that the continental margin lithospheric mantle is significantly thinner than expected beneath the orogens adjacent to the subduction zones. The thinner than expected lithosphere extends inland as far as the edges of nearby cratonic cores. These observations suggest that subducting oceanic plates viscously entrain and remove continental mantle lithosphere from beneath adjacent continental margins, modulating the surface tectonics and pre-conditioning the margins for further deformation. The latter can include delamination of the entire lithospheric mantle, as around GA, inferred by results from active and passive seismic experiments. Viscous removal of continental margin lithosphere creates lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB) topography which can give rise to secondary downwellings under the continental interior far inland from the subduction zone: We image one under SA and we infer that one or more have occurred in the past under the western Mediterranean. The process of subduction-driven continental margin lithosphere removal reconciles numerous, sometimes mutually exclusive, geodynamic models proposed to explain the complex oceanic-continental tectonics of these two subduction zones.

  11. Tsunami history of an Oregon coastal lake reveals a 4600 yr record of great earthquakes on the Cascadia subduction zone

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kelsey, H.M.; Nelson, A.R.; Hemphill-Haley, E.; Witter, R.C.

    2005-01-01

    Bradley Lake, on the southern Oregon coastal plain, records local tsunamis and seismic shaking on the Cascadia subduction zone over the last 7000 yr. Thirteen marine incursions delivered landward-thinning sheets of sand to the lake from nearshore, beach, and dune environments to the west. Following each incursion, a slug of marine water near the bottom of the freshwater lake instigated a few-year-to-several-decade period of a brackish (??? 4??? salinity) lake. Four additional disturbances without marine incursions destabilized sideslopes and bottom sediment, producing a suspension deposit that blanketed the lake bottom. Considering the magnitude and duration of the disturbances necessary to produce Bradley Lake's marine incursions, a local tsunami generated by a great earthquake on the Cascadia subduction zone is the only accountable mechanism. Extreme ocean levels must have been at least 5-8 m above sea level, and the cumulative duration of each marine incursion must have been at least 10 min. Disturbances without marine incursions require seismic shaking as well. Over the 4600 yr period when Bradley Lake was an optimum tsunami recorder, tsunamis from Cascadia plate-boundary earthquakes came in clusters. Between 4600 and 2800 cal yr B.P., tsunamis occurred at the average frequency of ??? 3-4 every 1000 yr. Then, starting ???2800 cal yr B.P., there was a 930-1260 yr interval with no tsunamis. That gap was followed by a ???1000 yr period with 4 tsunamis. In the last millennium, a 670-750 yr gap preceded the A.D. 1700 earthquake and tsunami. The A.D. 1700 earthquake may be the first of a new cluster of plate-boundary earthquakes and accompanying tsunamis. Local tsunamis entered Bradley Lake an average of every 390 yr, whereas the portion of the Cascadia plate boundary that underlies Bradley Lake ruptured in a great earthquake less frequently, about once every 500 yr. Therefore, the entire length of the subduction zone does not rupture in every earthquake, and Bradley Lake has recorded earthquakes caused by rupture along the entire length of the Cascadia plate boundary as well as earthquakes caused by rupture of shorter segments of the boundary. The tsunami record from Bradley Lake indicates that at times, most recently ???1700 yr B.P., overlapping or adjoining segments of the Cascadia plate boundary ruptured within decades of each other. ?? 2005 Geological Society of America.

  12. Stochastic strong ground motion simulations for the intermediate-depth earthquakes of the south Aegean subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kkallas, Harris; Papazachos, Konstantinos; Boore, David; Margaris, Vasilis

    2015-04-01

    We have employed the stochastic finite-fault modelling approach of Motazedian and Atkinson (2005), as described by Boore (2009), for the simulation of Fourier spectra of the Intermediate-depth earthquakes of the south Aegean subduction zone. The stochastic finite-fault method is a practical tool for simulating ground motions of future earthquakes which requires region-specific source, path and site characterizations as input model parameters. For this reason we have used data from both acceleration-sensor and broadband velocity-sensor instruments from intermediate-depth earthquakes with magnitude of M 4.5-6.7 that occurred in the south Aegean subduction zone. Source mechanisms for intermediate-depth events of north Aegean subduction zone are either collected from published information or are constrained using the main faulting types from Kkallas et al. (2013). The attenuation parameters for simulations were adopted from Skarladoudis et al. (2013) and are based on regression analysis of a response spectra database. The site amplification functions for each soil class were adopted from Klimis et al., (1999), while the kappa values were constrained from the analysis of the EGELADOS network data from Ventouzi et al., (2013). The investigation of stress-drop values was based on simulations performed with the EXSIM code for several ranges of stress drop values and by comparing the results with the available Fourier spectra of intermediate-depth earthquakes. Significant differences regarding the strong-motion duration, which is determined from Husid plots (Husid, 1969), have been identified between the for-arc and along-arc stations due to the effect of the low-velocity/low-Q mantle wedge on the seismic wave propagation. In order to estimate appropriate values for the duration of P-waves, we have automatically picked P-S durations on the available seismograms. For the S-wave durations we have used the part of the seismograms starting from the S-arrivals and ending at the 95%-energy limit of the Husid plots. After appropriate calibration of all parameters involved in the simulations we generated separate stochastic waveforms for both P- and S-waves, and produce the final synthetics by appropriate merging of the two stochastic waveforms. This work has been partly supported by the 3D-SEGMENTS project #1337 funded by EC European Social Fund and the Operational Programme "Education and Lifelong Learning" of the ARISTEIA-I call of the Greek Secretariat of Research and Technology.

  13. Mineralogy and fluid content of sediments entering the Costa Rica subduction zone - Results from Site U1414, IODP Expedition 344

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Charpentier, D.; Buatier, M.; Kutterolf, S.; Straub, S. M.; Nascimento, D.; Millan, C.

    2013-12-01

    Subduction zones are characterized by the largest thrust earthquakes, as quantified by both rupture area and seismic moment release. Offshore Costa Rica, the oceanic Cocos Plate subducts under the Caribbean plate forming the southern end of the Middle America trench. A high convergence rate and almost complete subduction of incoming sediments make the Costa Rica convergent margin an extremely dynamic environment. The Costa Rica Seismogenesis Project (CRISP) is designed to understand the processes that control nucleation and seismic rupture of large earthquakes at erosional subduction zones. Site U1414 of IODP Exp.344 was drilled to investigate the material from the incoming Cocos Plate. A key parameter of incoming plate is fluid content and release because it impacts deformation within the subduction complex. The deposition, compaction and diagenesis of sedimentary rocks control the distribution of fluids, fluid pressures and fluid flow patterns within subduction zones. We therefore decided to characterize sediment composition and quantify the different types of water at Site U1414. Mineralogical investigations were performed using optical and electronic microscope observations, X Ray Diffraction (on bulk and clay fractions), Cation Exchange Capacity measurements, carbon analyses (to determine carbonate contents), and sequenced extractions in NaOH (to quantify the biogenic opal content). Fluid characteristics were approached by thermal gravimetric analyses. The entire sedimentary sequence was recovered at Site U1414 and can be divided into three major sedimentary units. The first one is a hemipelagic silty clay to clay with a gradual increase of calcareous nannofossils. The dominant mineral is smectite associated in the clay fractions with kaolinite and zeolites. Small amounts of biogenic opal have been analyzed. Other minerals like quartz, feldspar and calcite are also present. The second unit is composed of nannofossil-rich calcareous ooze. The proportion of biosilica is variable and can attain 15 wt.%. Smectite and zeolites are present in smaller amount. The third unit is a lithified sandstone. Biosilica and smectite are absent, but zeolites are still present in this unit. Fluid content that can be released varies from about 15 wt.% to 40 wt.%. In shallow levels a significant proportion is pore water fluid, whereas in deeper levels water stored within minerals comprises a greater proportion of the total fluid budget. The presence of smectite yields to fluid release by dehydration and dehydroxylation at temperatures less than approximately 100°C and 500°C respectively. Transformation of biogenic opal to diagenetic silice goes to completion at temperatures of 50-100°C. It seems to be an importance source of fluid in the second unit, whereas in unit three it is zeolite water.

  14. S-wave anisotropy estimated by seismic interferometry using ambient noise record in the Nankai Trough subduction zone, Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kimura, T.; Mikada, H.; Araki, E.; Kitada, K.

    2013-12-01

    In the Nankai Trough subduction zone, located beneath the Pacific Ocean off the southeast coast of Japan, interplate earthquakes can be generated repeatedly in association with stress accumulation and release cycle. In this study, we aim to obtain the information of S-wave anisotropy beneath the seafloor, which could be interpreted as a proxy of stress and strain field above the subduction zone. For this purpose, we apply the seismic interferometry technique to ambient noise records acquired by seafloor and subseafloor seismometers deployed above the Nankai Trough subduction zone. In this area, we have twenty seafloor seismometers as a part of DONET (Dense Oceanfloor Network System for Earthquake and Tsunamis) and a borehole seismometer installed in the IODP (Integrated Ocean Drilling Program) C0002G observatory at the bottom of the borehole, 900 m below seafloor. Both observatories were designed and installed to monitor the seismic activity and the process of earthquake generation including the stress accumulation. In this study, we apply the seismic interferometry to ambient noise records observed by these DONET and C0002G seismometers. Seismic interferometry is a method to retrieve the impulse response by the cross-correlation of seismic records simultaneously acquired by the two seismometers. Because the horizontal components are dominated by S-wave energy, we expected that auto- and cross-correlation functions (ACF and CCF), calculated from the horizontal components of each seismometer, would provide us the knowledge of S-wave velocity and anisotropy beneath seafloor, as a proxy of strain and stress field, and fluid migration above the plate boundary. We obtained zero offset 4-C ACF and CCFs comprising V11, V12, V21, and V22, calculated form continuous ambient noise records observed by horizontal components of each seismometer. Vij are ACF and CCFs calculated from ambient noise record observed by i- and j-direction receiver components, and represents impulse response which has i-direction source and j-direction receiver of each seismometer. We used each 1 hour dataset for more than 6 months and obtained Vij as 30 s zero offset impulse responses for each seismometer. In the obtained ACF and CCFs, several coherent events are visible. However, the events in each component are not consistent with that of others. It might result from S-wave splitting affected by anisotropy. S-wave split into two orthogonal directions along anisotropy direction in propagating anisotropy media. We then applied the Alford rotation and the layer stripping method to the obtained 4-C ACF and CCFs to estimate S-wave anisotropy direction and amplitude beneath each seismometer in each layer, shallow sediment and accretionary prism above the plate boundary. Obtained results, including the azimuth and magnitude of anisotropy as functions of depth, show good agreement with S-wave anisotropy directions and principle shear stress directions estimated from two of the other methods, i.e., borehole breakout analysis in the IODP C0009 borehole, and P-S converted wave analysis using airgun OBS data. We expect that our method could make it possible to monitor temporal changes in the azimuth and the magnitude in anisotropy, as a proxy of stress field, using real-time ambient noise records in the subduction zone.

  15. Discordant 14C ages from buried tidal-marsh soils in the Cascadia subduction zone, southern Oregon coast

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nelson, A.R.

    1992-01-01

    Peaty, tidal-marsh soils interbedded with estuarine mud in late Holocene stratigraphic sequences near Coos Bay, Oregon, may have been submerged and buried during great (M > 8) subduction earthquakes, smaller localized earthquakes, or by nontectonic processes. Radiocarbon dating might help distinguish among these alternatives by showing that soils at different sites were submerged at different times along this part of the Cascadia subduction zone. But comparison of conventional 14C ages for different materials from the same buried soils shows that they contain materials that differ in age by many hundreds of years. Errors in calibrated soil ages represent about the same length of time as recurrence times for submergence events (150-500 yr)-this similarity precludes using conventional 14C ages to distinguish buried soils along the southern Oregon coast. Accelerator mass spectrometer 14C ages of carefully selected macrofossils from the tops of peaty soils should provide more precise estimates of the times of submergence events. ?? 1992.

  16. Niobium-enriched basalts from the Wabigoon subprovince, Canada: evidence for adakitic metasomatism above an Archean subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wyman, D. A.; Ayer, J. A.; Devaney, J. R.

    2000-06-01

    Late Archean niobium-enriched basalts from the Central Sturgeon Lake assemblage and Neepawa group of the western Wabigoon subprovince have mantle-normalized Nb/La between 0.8 and 1.3 and Zr/Y between 4 and 7. They are compositionally similar to basalts attributed to adakite metasomatism of mantle wedge regions in Cenozoic subduction zones [Sajona et al., J. Petrol. 37 (1996) 693-726]. In detail, their Sc-REE systematics suggest the Archean basalts were generated above the garnet stability field. An association with adakite-like volcanic rocks, an absence of komatiites and the arc-like attributes of their host sequences suggest a subduction-related origin for the basalts. If current models of adakite and Niobium-enriched basalt genesis are valid, then additional examples of these rocks should be relatively common in other Archean greenstone belts.

  17. Oceanic crust in the mid-mantle beneath west-central Pacific subduction zones: evidence from S to P converted waveforms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Zhongtao; He, Xiaobo

    2015-10-01

    The fate of subducted slabs is enigmatic, yet intriguing. We analyse seismic arrivals at ˜20-50 s after the direct P wave in an array in northeast China (NECESSArray) recordings of four deep earthquakes occurring beneath the west-central Pacific subduction zones (from the eastern Indonesia to Tonga region). We employ the array analysing techniques of fourth root vespagram and beam-forming analysis to constrain the slowness and backazimuth of later arrivals. Our analyses reveal that these arrivals have a slightly lower slowness value than the direct P wave and the backazimuth deviates slightly from the great circle direction. Along with calculation of 1-D synthetic seismograms, we conclude that the later arrival is corresponding to an energy of S-to-P converted at a scatterer below the sources. Total five scatterers are detected at depths varying from ˜700 to 1110 km in the study region. The past subducted oceanic crust most likely accounts for the seismic scatterers trapped in the mid-mantle beneath the west-central subduction zones. Our observation in turn reflects that oceanic crust at least partly separated from subducted oceanic lithosphere and may be trapped substantially in the mid-mantle surrounding subduction zones, in particular in the western Pacific subduction zones.

  18. Tectono-stratigraphy and low-grade metamorphism of Late Permian and Early Jurassic accretionary complexes within the Kurosegawa belt, Southwest Japan: Implications for mechanisms of crustal displacement within active continental margin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hara, Hidetoshi; Kurihara, Toshiyuki; Mori, Hiroshi

    2013-04-01

    We characterize the tectono-stratigraphic architecture and low-grade metamorphism of the accretionary complex preserved in the Kurosegawa belt of the Kitagawa district in eastern Shikoku, Southwest Japan, in order to understand its internal structure, tectono-metamorphic evolution, and assessments of displacement of continental fragments within the complex. We report the first ever documented occurrence of an Early Jurassic radiolarian assemblage within the accretionary complex of the Kurosegawa belt that has been previously classified as the Late Permian accretionary complex, thus providing a revised age interpretation for these rocks. The accretionary complex is subdivided into four distinct tectono-stratigraphic units: Late Permian mélange and phyllite units, and Early Jurassic mélange and sandstone units. The stratigraphy of these four units is structurally repeated due to an E-W striking, steeply dipping regional fault. We characterized low-grade metamorphism of the accretionary complex via illite crystallinity and Raman spectroscopy of carbonaceous material. The estimated pattern of low-grade metamorphism showed pronounced variability within the complex and revealed no discernible spatial trends. The primary thermal structure in these rocks was overprinted by later tectonic events. Based on geological and thermal structure, we conclude that continental fragments within the Kurosegawa belt were structurally translated into both the Late Permian and Early Jurassic accretionary complexes, which comprise a highly deformed zone affected by strike-slip tectonics during the Early Cretaceous. Different models have been proposed to explain the initial structural evolution of the Kurosegawa belt (i.e., micro-continent collision and klippe tectonic models). Even if we presuppose either model, the available geological evidence requires a new interpretation, whereby primary geological structures are overprinted and reconfigured by later tectonic events.

  19. Simulations of seismic hazard for the Pacific Northwest of the United States from earthquakes associated with the Cascadia subduction zone

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Petersen, M.D.; Cramer, C.H.; Frankel, A.D.

    2002-01-01

    We investigate the impact of different rupture and attenuation models for the Cascadia subduction zone by simulating seismic hazard models for the Pacific Northwest of the U.S. at 2% probability of exceedance in 50 years. We calculate the sensitivity of hazard (probabilistic ground motions) to the source parameters and the attenuation relations for both intraslab and interface earthquakes and present these in the framework of the standard USGS hazard model that includes crustal earthquakes. Our results indicate that allowing the deep intraslab earthquakes to occur anywhere along the subduction zone increases the peak ground acceleration hazard near Portland, Oregon by about 20%. Alternative attenuation relations for deep earthquakes can result in ground motions that differ by a factor of two. The hazard uncertainty for the plate interface and intraslab earthquakes is analyzed through a Monte-Carlo logic tree approach and indicates a seismic hazard exceeding 1 g (0.2 s spectral acceleration) consistent with the U.S. National Seismic Hazard Maps in western Washington, Oregon, and California and an overall coefficient of variation that ranges from 0.1 to 0.4. Sensitivity studies indicate that the paleoseismic chronology and the magnitude of great plate interface earthquakes contribute significantly to the hazard uncertainty estimates for this region. Paleoseismic data indicate that the mean earthquake recurrence interval for great earthquakes is about 500 years and that it has been 300 years since the last great earthquake. We calculate the probability of such a great earthquake along the Cascadia plate interface to be about 14% when considering a time-dependent model and about 10% when considering a time-independent Poisson model during the next 50-year interval.

  20. Structural interpretation and physical property estimates based on COAST 2012 seismic reflection profiles offshore central Washington, Cascadia subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Webb, S. I.; Tobin, H. J.; Everson, E. D.; Fortin, W.; Holbrook, W. S.; Kent, G.; Keranen, K. M.

    2014-12-01

    The Cascadia subduction zone has a history of large magnitude earthquakes, but a near-total lack of plate interface seismicity, making the updip limit of the seismogenic zone difficult to locate. In addition, the central Cascadia accretionary prism is characterized by an extremely low wedge taper angle, landward vergent initial thrusting, and a flat midslope terrace between the inner and outer wedges, unlike most other accretionary prisms (e.g. the Nankai Trough, Japan). The Cascadia Open Access Seismic Transect (COAST) lines were shot by R/V Marcus Langseth in July of 2012 off central Washington to image this subduction zone. Two trench-parallel and nine trench-perpendicular lines were collected. In this study, we present detailed seismic interpretation of both time- and depth-migrated stacked profiles, focused on elucidating the deposition and deformation of both pre- and syn-tectonic sediment in the trench and slope. Distribution and timing of sediments and their deformation is used to unravel the evolution of the wedge through time. Initially, interpretation of the time-sections is carried out to support the building of tomographic velocity models to aid in the pre-stack depth migration (PSDM) of selected lines. In turn, we use PSDM velocity models to estimate porosity and pore pressure conditions at the base of the wedge and across the basal plate interface décollement where possible, using established velocity-porosity transforms. Interpretation in this way incorporates both accurate structural relationships and robust porosity models to document wedge development and present-day stress state, in particular regions of potential overpressure. Results shed light on the origin and evolution of the mid-slope terrace and the low taper angle for the forearc wedge. This work may shed light ultimately on the position of the potential updip limit of the seismogenic zone beneath the wedge.

  1. Joint Inversion of Seismic and Gravity Data for Velocity Structure and Hypocentral Locations of the Colombian Subduction Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Syracuse, E. M.; Maceira, M.; Prieto, G. A.; Zhang, H.; Ammon, C. J.

    2014-12-01

    Joint inversions of geophysical data recover models that simultaneously fit multiple types of constraints while playing upon the various sensitivities of each data type. Here, we combine body wave arrival times with surface wave dispersion measurements and gravity observations to develop a combined 3D P- and S-wave velocity model for the crust and upper mantle of Colombia. P- and S-wave arrival times were obtained for local earthquakes from instruments in the Colombian National Seismic Network. Rayleigh wave dispersion curves were inverted for using a subset of network stations and larger local earthquakes. Gravity observations were extracted from the global satellite-based model EGM2008. Preliminary results using body waves only show reduced velocities beneath the volcanic arc in the upper 25 km of the crust. Crustal velocities are also reduced from the 1D starting model beneath the Eastern Cordillera in the northern half of the country. Relocations of intermediate-depth seismicity clearly indicate a discontinuity in the slab centered 5° N latitude, where the southern portion of the slab is ~200 km trenchward of the northern portion, coincident with the termination of arc volcanism and in recent years interpreted as due to a slab tear [Vargas and Mann, 2013]. Seismicity below 100 km depth in the southern portion of the subduction zone­­­ is surrounded by a ~100-km-thick region of elevated velocities, associated with the subduction of the Nazca Plate, and embedded within a broader region of reduced velocities. The northern portion of the subduction zone at 100 km depth and below is characterized by a broad region of elevated velocities, which may be consistent with a slab of an old, thickened Caribbean Plate origin. The overlapping of the edges of the Nazca and Caribbean slabs may contribute to the seismicity of the Bucaramanga nest.

  2. Ultrahigh-pressure minerals and metamorphic terranes - The view from China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liou, J. G.; Ernst, W. G.; Zhang, R. Y.; Tsujimori, T.; Jahn, B. M.

    2009-07-01

    Ultrahigh-pressure (UHP) metamorphism refers to mineralogical modifications of continental and oceanic crustal protoliths ± associated mafic-ultramafic rocks initially formed or emplaced in shallow levels of the lithosphere, but which subsequently have experienced P- T conditions within or above the coesite stability field (>˜2.7 GPa, ˜700 °C). Typical products include eclogite, garnet peridotite, and UHP varieties of metapelite, quartzite, marble, paragneiss, and orthogneiss. UHP metamorphic assemblages require relatively cold lithospheric subduction to mantle depths; some recrystallization even occurs under "forbidden" P- T conditions, characterized by a geotherm of <5 °C/km. In appropriate bulk compositions, UHP metamorphism produces coesite, microdiamond and other indicator phases such as majoritic garnet, TiO 2 with ?-PbO 2 structure, supersilicic clinopyroxene, high- P clinoenstatite, K-cymrite and stishovite. Globally, at least 20 coesite-bearing eclogitic, eight diamond-bearing, and five majoritic garnet-bearing UHP regions have been documented thus far; they are mostly of Phanerozoic ages. The presence of majoritic garnet, and even apparent stishovite pseudomorph in supracrustal rocks suggests continental subduction to mantle depths exceeding 300 km; such UHP metamorphic terranes should be distinguished from deep-seated mantle xenoliths that contain UHP minerals. Cold subduction zones may be sites of major recycling of H 2O back into the mantle; high- P experiments on mafic-ultramafic bulk compositions reveal that many important hydrous and formally anhydrous phases are stable under such UHP conditions. The current explosion of research on continental UHP terranes reflects their significance for mantle dynamics and the tectonics of continental subduction, collision, exhumation, mantle-slab interactions, and geochemical recycling. A further characterization of UHP phases and positive identification of UHP minerals requires new experimental studies coupled with state-of-the-art analyses. For example, the very rare occurrence of microdiamond inclusions in zircons from Dabie-Sulu UHP rocks may reflect high f attending recrystallization inasmuch as epidote is rather common. Rutile needles within garnets from Sulu UHP eclogitic rocks may not be the result of exsolution, so in such cases the apparent UHP pressure may have been over estimated. Hadean igneous microdiamond inclusions in Jack Hills detrital zircons could have originated from mantle xenoliths whereas abundant detrital Phanerozoic diamonds containing inclusions of coesite and other eclogitic minerals from New South Wales might have been derived from unexposed UHP metamorphic terranes. Micro-mineral intergrowth and nano-size minerals may hold important key to deciphering the actual P- T paths of subduction and mantle return flow. Although most exhumed terranes have returned surfaceward relatively rapidly after short time of UHP condition, the long duration of storage at great depth and slow exhumation for the largest UHP terranes remain as major problems.

  3. Dynamics of continental accretion.

    PubMed

    Moresi, L; Betts, P G; Miller, M S; Cayley, R A

    2014-04-10

    Subduction zones become congested when they try to consume buoyant, exotic crust. The accretionary mountain belts (orogens) that form at these convergent plate margins have been the principal sites of lateral continental growth through Earth's history. Modern examples of accretionary margins are the North American Cordilleras and southwest Pacific subduction zones. The geologic record contains abundant accretionary orogens, such as the Tasmanides, along the eastern margin of the supercontinent Gondwana, and the Altaïdes, which formed on the southern margin of Laurasia. In modern and ancient examples of long-lived accretionary orogens, the overriding plate is subjected to episodes of crustal extension and back-arc basin development, often related to subduction rollback and transient episodes of orogenesis and crustal shortening, coincident with accretion of exotic crust. Here we present three-dimensional dynamic models that show how accretionary margins evolve from the initial collision, through a period of plate margin instability, to re-establishment of a stable convergent margin. The models illustrate how significant curvature of the orogenic system develops, as well as the mechanism for tectonic escape of the back-arc region. The complexity of the morphology and the evolution of the system are caused by lateral rollback of a tightly arcuate trench migrating parallel to the plate boundary and orthogonally to the convergence direction. We find geological and geophysical evidence for this process in the Tasmanides of eastern Australia, and infer that this is a recurrent and global phenomenon. PMID:24670638

  4. Continental crust generated in oceanic arcs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gazel, Esteban; Hayes, Jorden L.; Hoernle, Kaj; Kelemen, Peter; Everson, Erik; Holbrook, W. Steven; Hauff, Folkmar; van den Bogaard, Paul; Vance, Eric A.; Chu, Shuyu; Calvert, Andrew J.; Carr, Michael J.; Yogodzinski, Gene M.

    2015-04-01

    Thin oceanic crust is formed by decompression melting of the upper mantle at mid-ocean ridges, but the origin of the thick and buoyant continental crust is enigmatic. Juvenile continental crust may form from magmas erupted above intra-oceanic subduction zones, where oceanic lithosphere subducts beneath other oceanic lithosphere. However, it is unclear why the subduction of dominantly basaltic oceanic crust would result in the formation of andesitic continental crust at the surface. Here we use geochemical and geophysical data to reconstruct the evolution of the Central American land bridge, which formed above an intra-oceanic subduction system over the past 70 Myr. We find that the geochemical signature of erupted lavas evolved from basaltic to andesitic about 10 Myr ago--coincident with the onset of subduction of more oceanic crust that originally formed above the Galápagos mantle plume. We also find that seismic P-waves travel through the crust at velocities intermediate between those typically observed for oceanic and continental crust. We develop a continentality index to quantitatively correlate geochemical composition with the average P-wave velocity of arc crust globally. We conclude that although the formation and evolution of continents may involve many processes, melting enriched oceanic crust within a subduction zone--a process probably more common in the Archaean--can produce juvenile continental crust.

  5. Lu-Hf geochronology on cm-sized garnets using microsampling: New constraints on garnet growth rates and duration of metamorphism during continental collision (Menderes Massif, Turkey)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmidt, Alexander; Pourteau, Amaury; Candan, Osman; Oberhänsli, Roland

    2015-12-01

    This study shows Lu-Hf geochronology of zoned garnet crystals contained in mica schists from the southern Menderes Massif, Turkey. Selected samples are four 3-5 cm large garnet megacrysts of which several consecutive garnet shells have been sampled with a micro-saw and analyzed for dating. The results are used to extract growth rates of garnet, and also to improve the time constraint for Alpine-aged overprint of the Pan-African basement in the Menderes Massif. Lu-Hf ages of the sampled garnet shells are determined by two-point garnet-only isochrons using the garnets' Lu-depleted rim compositions. This yields a consistent decrease of age information from core to rim segments of individual garnet crystals and the calculated isochron ages propose a time frame of growth between 42.6 ± 1.9 and 34.8 ± 3.1 Ma. Major element profiles in the investigated garnets characterize zoning patterns indicative of prograde conditions: Rayleigh fractionated bell-shaped Mn and decreasing Fe/(Fe + Mg) are recorded by the garnets' core to rim compositions. Therefore the obtained Lu-Hf ages record timing of early prograde growth for the cores of the garnets. Two of the large garnet crystals also yield isochron ages of 58.83 ± 0.69 and 50.16 ± 0.84 Ma in their innermost cores, which appear to record an early nucleation event. This view, however, is not in concordance with the observed major element profiles of these garnets, and therefore is interpreted with caution. Termination of the garnet growth period is determined through the calculation of radial growth rates based on the size of the garnets and the Lu-Hf ages obtained for consecutive shells. Extrapolation of these rates potentially constrains the total duration for garnet growth terminating at 31 ± 6 Ma. Comparison of the growth rates calculated for individual crystals shows a variety of slow and fast growing garnets, and similar results have been previously obtained with the Rb-Sr and Sm-Nd isotope systems. The new data provides a precise age determination for prograde Barrovian metamorphism in the southern Menderes Massif, which so far was placed between 63 and 27 Ma on the basis of mica Rb-Sr and Ar-Ar dating. This study provides new constraints crucial to the understanding of the tectonic evolution of southwest Anatolia and the Aegean realm, as it yields a shorter outline for Alpine aged continental collision.

  6. San Andreas Fault tremor and retrograde metamorphism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fagereng, Åke; Diener, Johann F. A.

    2011-12-01

    Tectonic tremor is an enigmatic low-frequency seismic phenomenon mainly observed in subduction zones, but also documented along the deep extension of the central San Andreas Fault. The physical mechanisms behind this unusual seismic event are not yet determined for any tectonic setting; however, low effective stress conditions arising from metamorphic fluid production are commonly inferred for subduction-related tremor. We investigate the petrologic conditions at which the San Andreas tectonic tremor is inferred to occur through calculations of the pressure - temperature - time evolution of stable mineral assemblages and their water content in the dominant lithologies of the Franciscan Complex. We find that tremor locations around Parkfield and Cholame are currently experiencing retrograde metamorphic conditions. Within the temperature-depth conditions of observed tremor activity, at approximately 500°C and 20 km depth, several mineralogical transitions may occur in cooling greywacke and mafic rocks, leading to localised, significant removal of free water and an associated volume decrease. This indicates that, contrary to subduction-related tremor, tremor on the San Andreas Fault is not linked to prograde, crustal metamorphic fluid production within the fault zone; rather it might be related to mantle-derived fluids from below the tremor zone, and/or fault zone weakening that occurs as phyllosilicates replace more competent and granular mineral phases.

  7. Evaluating the effect of rheology on the evolution of continental collision: Application to the Zagros orogen.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    François, T.; Burov, E.; Agard, P.; Meyer, B.

    2012-04-01

    We explore the impact of thermo-rheological structure of the lithosphere on the transition from oceanic to continental subduction and evolution of the continental collision at moderate convergence rates. We have designed large-scale (3082×590 km), high-resolution fully coupled thermo-mechanical numerical models to (1) study the evolution of continent-continent collision and (2) draw some parallels with the tectonic evolution of the Zagros, where collision between the Arabian craton and the Eurasian lithosphere resulted in the rise of the Iranian plateau. This collision zone is of particular interest due to its disputed resemblance to the faster Himalayan collision between the Indian craton and Eurasia, which gave birth to the vast Tibetan plateau. Our models implement free upper surface boundary, surface erosion, rheological stratification (upper crust, lower crust, lithospheric mantle and asthenosphere), brittle-elastic-ductile rheology, metamorphic phase changes (density and physical properties), and account for the specific crustal and thermal structure of the Arabian and Iranian continental lithospheres. The initial model geometry corresponds to the pre-continental collision phase, with an oceanic, Neotethyan subducting lithosphere still separating the two continents. In the experiments we investigate different thermo-rheological structures for both the lower and upper plate, going from wet to dry olivine (plus Peierls) rheology for the mantle parts and from two-layer to three-layer crustal structures with all possible granite, diorite, granulate and diabase rheologies. As in some previous Himalayan studies, the experiments suggest that, whatever the crustal rheology, the continental subduction occurs only in the case of relatively strong mantle lithospheres with dry olivine rheologies (for the lower plate, temperature at Moho depth, Tm < 550° C) and high initial convergence rates (>1.5-5 cm/yr). Depending on the lower-crustal rheology (strong or weak), either the whole (upper and lower) crust or only the lower crust is involved in subduction. In case of weak metamorphic rheologies, phase changes and progressive densification along the subduction zone improve chances for stable subduction. In general, exhumation of UHP-HP rocks to the surface is favored if the crustal rheological profile is characterized by two internal ductile decollement levels (between the upper and lower or intermediate crust and the lower crust and mantle lithosphere). On the other hand, the formation of the Iranian plateau is compatible with the assumption of rather weak mantle and crustal rheology. Hence, the models show that only a relatively narrow range of rheological parameters is compatible with the evolution of Zagros collision, which in turn allows us to further constrain the long-term rheology of the continental lithosphere.

  8. Fast rates of subduction erosion along the Costa Rica Pacific margin: Implications for nonsteady rates of crustal recycling at subduction zones

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Vannucchi, P.; Ranero, C.R.; Galeotti, S.; Straub, S.M.; Scholl, D. W.; McDougall-Ried, K.

    2003-01-01

    At least since the middle Miocene (???16 Ma), subduction erosion has been the dominant process controlling the tectonic evolution of the Pacific margin of Costa Rica. Ocean Drilling Program Site 1042 recovered 16.5 Ma nearshore sediment at ???3.9 km depth, ???7 km landward of the trench axis. The overlying Miocene to Quaternary sediment contains benthic foraminifera documenting margin subsidence from upper bathyal (???200 m) to abyssal (???2000 m) depth. The rate of subsidence was low during the early to middle Miocene but increased sharply in the late Miocene-early Pliocene (5-6.5 Ma) and at the Pliocene-Pleistocene boundary (2.4 Ma). Foraminifera data, bedding dip, and the geometry of slope sediment indicate that tilting of the forearc occurred coincident with the onset of rapid late Miocene subsidence. Seismic images show that normal faulting is widespread across the continental slope; however, extension by faulting only accounts for a minor amount of the post-6.5 Ma subsidence. Basal tectonic erosion is invoked to explain the subsidence. The short-term rate of removal of rock from the forearc is about 107-123 km3 Myr-1 km-1. Mass removal is a nonsteady state process affecting the chemical balance of the arc: the ocean sediment input, with the short-term erosion rate, is a factor of 10 smaller than the eroded mass input. The low 10Be concentration in the volcanic arc of Costa Rica could be explained by dilution with eroded material. The late Miocene onset of rapid subsidence is coeval with the arrival of the Cocos Ridge at the subduction zone. The underthrusting of thick and thermally younger ocean crust decreased the subduction angle of the slab along a large segment of the margin and changed the dynamic equilibrium of the margin taper. This process may have induced the increase in the rate of subduction erosion and thus the recycling of crustal material to the mantle. Copyright 2003 by the American Geophysical Union.

  9. Experimental Constraints on CO2 Solubility in Rhyolitic Slab Melts - Implications for Carbon Flux in Subduction Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duncan, M. S.; Dasgupta, R.

    2014-12-01

    Understanding the fate of carbon in subduction zones is critical to understand carbon cycle on a global scale. The amount of carbonate and reduced (organic) carbon that is subducted and the amount of CO2 that is released from arc volcanoes vary for subduction zones around the globe. If the agent of carbon transfer from slab to sub-arc mantle is a partial melt of either ocean-floor sediments [1] or hydrous basalt [2], we need to know the solubility of CO2 in rhyolitic slab melt to constrain the flux of carbon in subduction zones. Our previous experiments have constrained CO2 content in silicic slab melts as a function of P (1.5-3.0 GPa) and melt H2O content (0.5-3.0 wt.%) [3]. Here we extend our experiments to constrain the effect of temperature (1100-1400 °C) and fO2 (CO2 vapor-saturated [3] and graphite-saturated) on CO2 solubility and speciation in natural rhyolitic melts. From our data, we constructed empirical and thermodynamic models to calculate CO2 content in slab melts at P and T appropriate for the sub-arc region of the subducting slab at variable fO2 [4]. These experiments and models show that CO2 solubility increases with increasing P, fO2, and melt H2O contents to ~3.5 wt.%, while there is a only slight increase in CO2 solubility with increasing T though the effect is much smaller. Our study constrains the extent of C-cycling to the deep interior and to the arc source for graphite-saturated domains of the downgoing crust. Further, there is a general correspondence between CO2 solubility in slab-derived, rhyolitic melts at sub-arc depth with measured CO2 outflux at arcs [5]. For hotter slabs (T>800 °C) the calculated CO2 contents using our thermodynamic model, for example, are 1.5-3.4 wt.% for a low-H2O melt generated near the FMQ buffer and correspond to arc fluxes of 50-500 × 109 mol/yr. For colder slabs (T<800 °C) the calculated CO2 contents are 0.9-1.6 wt.% for a low-H2O melt generated near the FMQ buffer and correspond to arc fluxes of 0.1-15 ×1 09 mol/yr. This correspondence suggests that slab-derived silicic melt may be the chief agent of C-transport from slab to mantle wedge. [1] Plank and Langmuir (1993) Nature, 362, 739-743; [2] Prouteau et al. (2001) Nature, 410, 197-200; [3] Duncan and Dasgupta. (2014) GCA, 124, 328-347; [4] Syracuse et al. (2010) PEPI, 183, 73-90; [5] Fischer et al. (2008) Geochem. J., 42, 21-38.

  10. Crustal investigation of the Hellenic subduction zone using wide aperture seismic data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bohnhoff, M.; Makris, J.; Papanikolaou, D.; Stavrakakis, G.

    2001-12-01

    We present the results of a wide-aperture seismic onshore-offshore study (Crete Seismic Experiment) in the Cretan region as part of the Hellenic arc compressional system. Three seismic lines were carried out on and around the island of Crete in order to investigate the crustal structure of the region. Up to 119 three-component recording stations were deployed on each profile that observed seismic energy generated by a 48-l airgun array and eight 20-kg landshots. A total of 6208 shots were fired. Upon completing the fieldwork, the vertical components of all stations were evaluated; 300 Common-Receiver-Gather (CRG) sections of the ocean bottom seismographs (OBS) and land stations as well as 100 Common-Source-Gather (CSG) sections of the land shots and selected airgun shots were compiled and modeled in order to generate a 2D P-wave velocity-depth model for each profile. The accuracy of the model depends on the depth and position along the profiles and does not exceed 5% for both depth and P-wave velocity. We identified strong lateral variations in crustal and sedimentary thickness mainly in a north-south direction but also along strike (east-west). The crust is continental and has a maximum thickness of 32.5 km below northern central Crete. Its subdivision in an upper ( vp=5.8-6.3 km/s, locally up to 6.5 km/s) and a lower ( vp=6.4-6.9 km/s) part is justified by a first-order discontinuity with vp-velocity a contrast of up to 0.6 km/s. The eastern part of Crete shows a significantly thinner crust of 24 to 26 km. To the North, the crustal thickness decreases to 15 km below the central Cretan Sea. The prominent decrease of the Moho depth north of central Crete is interpreted to represent the northern end of a microcontinent that was subducted in Oligocene times and later surfaced by 'buoyant escape' (Stöckhert et al., 1999; Thomson et al., 1999). The P- T- t- D history of the high-pressure rocks of Crete, Greece: denudation by buoyant escape. In: Exhumation Processes: Normal Faulting, Ductile Flow and Erosion. Ring, U., Lister, G., Willet, S., Brandon, M. (Eds.), Spec. Publ. of the Geol. Soc. of London, p. 154]. To the south and southwest of the island, the continental crust gradually thins to a minimum of 17 km and at approximately 100 km off the southern coast of Crete, it is in contact with oceanic crust below the Mediterranean Ridge. Upper mantle velocities were determined to be 7.7 km/s below the Cretan Sea and 8.0 km/s south of Crete. Below the continental Cretan crust, a 6- to 7-km-thick layer with vp-velocities between 6.6 and 7.1 km/s was identified on each line and could be followed by reflections to a depth of 42 km. It is decoupled from the overlying continental crust at central Crete and is interpreted as oceanic crust presently under subduction towards the NNE below the Aegean Sea.

  11. Geologic processes of accretion in the Cascadia subduction zone west of Washington State

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fisher, M.A.; Flueh, E.R.; Scholl, D. W.; Parsons, T.; Wells, R.E.; Trehu, A.; ten Brink, U.; Weaver, C.S.

    1999-01-01

    The continental margin west of Oregon and Washington undergoes a northward transition in morphology, from a relatively narrow, steep slope west of Oregon to a broad, midslope terrace off Washington. Multichannel seismic (MCS) reflection data collected over the accretionary complex show that the morphologic transition is accompanied by significant change in accretionary style: West of Oregon the direction of thrust vergence in the wedge toe flip-flops between landward and seaward, whereas off Washington, thrust faults in the toe verge consistently landward, except near the mouth of the Columbia River where detachment folding of accreted sediment is evident. Furthermore, rocks under the broad midslope terrace west of Washington appear to be intruded by diapirs. The combination of detachment folding, diapirs, and landward-vergent thrust faults all suggest that nearly as far landward as the shelf break, coupling along the interplate decollement is, or has been, low, as suggested by other lines of evidence.

  12. Subduction-driven recycling of continental margin lithosphere.

    PubMed

    Levander, A; Bezada, M J; Niu, F; Humphreys, E D; Palomeras, I; Thurner, S M; Masy, J; Schmitz, M; Gallart, J; Carbonell, R; Miller, M S

    2014-11-13

    Whereas subduction recycling of oceanic lithosphere is one of the central themes of plate tectonics, the recycling of continental lithosphere appears to be far more complicated and less well understood. Delamination and convective downwelling are two widely recognized processes invoked to explain the removal of lithospheric mantle under or adjacent to orogenic belts. Here we relate oceanic plate subduction to removal of adjacent continental lithosphere in certain plate tectonic settings. We have developed teleseismic body wave images from dense broadband seismic experiments that show higher than expected volumes of anomalously fast mantle associated with the subducted Atlantic slab under northeastern South America and the Alboran slab beneath the Gibraltar arc region; the anomalies are under, and are aligned with, the continental margins at depths greater than 200 kilometres. Rayleigh wave analysis finds that the lithospheric mantle under the continental margins is significantly thinner than expected, and that thin lithosphere extends from the orogens adjacent to the subduction zones inland to the edges of nearby cratonic cores. Taking these data together, here we describe a process that can lead to the loss of continental lithosphere adjacent to a subduction zone. Subducting oceanic plates can viscously entrain and remove the bottom of the continental thermal boundary layer lithosphere from adjacent continental margins. This drives surface tectonics and pre-conditions the margins for further deformation by creating topography along the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary. This can lead to development of secondary downwellings under the continental interior, probably under both South America and the Gibraltar arc, and to delamination of the entire lithospheric mantle, as around the Gibraltar arc. This process reconciles numerous, sometimes mutually exclusive, geodynamic models proposed to explain the complex oceanic-continental tectonics of these subduction zones. PMID:25391963

  13. A dearth of intermediate melts at subduction zone volcanoes and the petrogenesis of arc andesites.

    PubMed

    Reubi, Olivier; Blundy, Jon

    2009-10-29

    Andesites represent a large proportion of the magmas erupted at continental arc volcanoes and are regarded as a major component in the formation of continental crust. Andesite petrogenesis is therefore fundamental in terms of both volcanic hazard and differentiation of the Earth. Andesites typically contain a significant proportion of crystals showing disequilibrium petrographic characteristics indicative of mixing or mingling between silicic and mafic magmas, which fuels a long-standing debate regarding the significance of these processes in andesite petrogenesis and ultimately questions the abundance of true liquids with andesitic composition. Central to this debate is the distinction between liquids (or melts) and magmas, mixtures of liquids with crystals, which may or may not be co-genetic. With this distinction comes the realization that bulk-rock chemical analyses of petrologically complex andesites can lead to a blurred picture of the fundamental processes behind arc magmatism. Here we present an alternative view of andesite petrogenesis, based on a review of quenched glassy melt inclusions trapped in phenocrysts, whole-rock chemistry, and high-pressure and high-temperature experiments. We argue that true liquids of intermediate composition (59 to 66 wt% SiO(2)) are far less common in the sub-volcanic reservoirs of arc volcanoes than is suggested by the abundance of erupted magma within this compositional range. Effective mingling within upper crustal magmatic reservoirs obscures a compositional bimodality of melts ascending from the lower crust, and masks the fundamental role of silicic melts (>/=66 wt% SiO(2)) beneath intermediate arc volcanoes. This alternative view resolves several puzzling aspects of arc volcanism and provides important clues to the integration of plutonic and volcanic records. PMID:19865169

  14. Major Existence of Very Low Frequency Earthquakes in Background Seismicity Along Subduction Zone of South-western Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ishihara, Y.

    2003-12-01

    The condense, high quality and equalized broadband seismic network provided us to recognize the variety of seismic sources. The active volcanoes excite seismic waves with various frequency characteristics. Some cases show the long period seismic waves greater than 10 sec associates with volcanic activities. The tectonic seismic events originated at the close to trench zone are frequently lack of high frequency, greater than 1 Hz, seismic wave component. Meanwhile, the many low frequency earthquakes and tremors whose sources are not explicated are occurred in lower crust and subcrustal region. The subduction zone of Philippine Sea plate in south-western Japan is actively genetic area of low frequency earthquake group. The broadband seismic array of Japan region observed unknown long period ground motions. The seismograms are higher amplitude between 10 and 30 sec period than ground noise level. The earthquake JMA and USGS catalogues don_ft list about these long period seismograms. The arrival order of wave packet means that these events locate subduction zone around Japan. The hypocenters of unknown events are estimated by arrival times of vertical peak amplitude using the assumption that the ground motion dominates Rayleigh wave. The more detailed determination of major events is performed by combined technique for moment tensor inversion and grid search. The moment magnitude of uncatalogued event is greater than 3.5 because of the detection limitation. The largest event is distributed to about 4.5 Mw level and special event is greater than 5.0. The frequency characteristics show that source time is 7 to 20 sec by comparison with synthetic seismograms. We call these uncatalogued events _gvery low frequency earthquake_h. The hypocenters are located to two kinds of zones along the Philippine Sea subducting plate in south-western Japan. The one zone is very close to the trough. The seismicity listed by earthquake catalogues is low level in the zone and hypocenters are distributed in island arc side. The very low frequency earthquakes occur in outer area of seismic generation zone. The other zone is coincided with extended zone generating low frequency seismic events. Very low frequency earthquake occurs intermittently in limited area. Frequently, activity increases for some days and swarm type activity generates occasionally. To evaluate integrated seismicity for anomalous events, same class magnitude, greater than 3.0, events occurred in same and surrounding area are picked up from JMA earthquake catalogue. The analysis shows that seismicity of very low frequency earthquakes is comparative with one of normal earthquakes in background activity. We concluded that very low frequency earthquake is one of factors playing seismically important role.

  15. Improving automatic earthquake locations in subduction zones: a case study for GEOFON catalog of Tonga-Fiji region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nooshiri, Nima; Heimann, Sebastian; Saul, Joachim; Tilmann, Frederik; Dahm, Torsten

    2015-04-01

    Automatic earthquake locations are sometimes associated with very large residuals up to 10 s even for clear arrivals, especially for regional stations in subduction zones because of their strongly heterogeneous velocity structure associated. Although these residuals are most likely not related to measurement errors but unmodelled velocity heterogeneity, these stations are usually removed from or down-weighted in the location procedure. While this is possible for large events, it may not be useful if the earthquake is weak. In this case, implementation of travel-time station corrections may significantly improve the automatic locations. Here, the shrinking box source-specific station term method (SSST) [Lin and Shearer, 2005] has been applied to improve relative location accuracy of 1678 events that occurred in the Tonga subduction zone between 2010 and mid-2014. Picks were obtained from the GEOFON earthquake bulletin for all available station networks. We calculated a set of timing corrections for each station which vary as a function of source position. A separate time correction was computed for each source-receiver path at the given station by smoothing the residual field over nearby events. We begin with a very large smoothing radius essentially encompassing the whole event set and iterate by progressively shrinking the smoothing radius. In this way, we attempted to correct for the systematic errors, that are introduced into the locations by the inaccuracies in the assumed velocity structure, without solving for a new velocity model itself. One of the advantages of the SSST technique is that the event location part of the calculation is separate from the station term calculation and can be performed using any single event location method. In this study, we applied a non-linear, probabilistic, global-search earthquake location method using the software package NonLinLoc [Lomax et al., 2000]. The non-linear location algorithm implemented in NonLinLoc is less sensitive to the problem of local misfit minima in the model space. Moreover, the spatial errors estimated by NonLinLoc are much more reliable than those derived by linearized algorithms. According to the obtained results, the root-mean-square (RMS) residual decreased from 1.37 s for the original GEOFON catalog (using a global 1-D velocity model without station specific corrections) to 0.90 s for our SSST catalog. Our results show 45-70% reduction of the median absolute deviation (MAD) of the travel-time residuals at regional stations. Additionally, our locations exhibit less scatter in depth and a sharper image of the seismicity associated with the subducting slab compared to the initial locations.

  16. Using the Vertical Component of the Surface Velocity Field to Map the Locked Zone at Cascadia Subduction Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moulas, E.; Brandon, M. T.; Podladchikov, Y.; Bennett, R. A.

    2014-12-01

    At present, our understanding of the locked zone at Cascadia subduction zone is based on thermal modeling and elastic modeling of horizontal GPS velocities. The thermal model by Hyndman and Wang (1995) provided a first-order assessment of where the subduction thrust might be cold enough for stick-slip behavior. The alternative approach by McCaffrey et al. (2007) is to use a Green's function that relates horizontal surface velocities, as recorded by GPS, to interseismic elastic deformation. The thermal modeling approach is limited by a lack of information about the amount of frictional heating occurring on the thrust (Molnar and England, 1990). The GPS approach is limited in that the horizontal velocity component is fairly insensitive to the structure of the locked zone. The vertical velocity component is much more useful for this purpose. We are fortunate in that vertical velocities can now be measured by GPS to a precision of about 0.2 mm/a. The dislocation model predicts that vertical velocities should range up to about 20 percent of the subduction velocity, which means maximum values of ~7 mm/a. The locked zone is generally entirely offshore at Cascadia, except for the Olympic Peninsula region, where the underlying Juan De Fuca plate has an anomalously low dip. Previous thermal and GPS modeling, as well as tide gauge data and episodic tremors indicate the locked zone there extends about 50 to 75 km onland. This situation provides an opportunity to directly study the locked zone. With that objective in mind, we have constructed a full 3D geodynamic model of the Cascadia subduction zone. At present, the model provides a full representation of the interseismic elastic deformation due to variations of slip on the subduction thrust. The model has been benchmarked against the Savage (2D) and Okada (3D) analytical solutions. This model has an important advantage over traditional dislocation modeling in that we include temperature-sensitive viscosity for the upper and lower plates, and also use realistic constitutive models to represent the locked zone. Another important advantage is that the 3D model provides a full representation of the interseismic deformation, which is important for interpreting GPS data.

  17. Why Archaean TTG cannot be generated by MORB melting in subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, Hervé; Moyen, Jean-François; Guitreau, Martin; Blichert-Toft, Janne; Le Pennec, Jean-Luc

    2014-06-01

    Until recently it was assumed that the Archaean continental crust (made of TTGs: tonalites, trondhjemites, and granodiorites) was generated through partial melting of MORB-like basalts in hot subduction environments, where the subducted oceanic crust melted at high pressure, leaving a garnet-bearing amphibolitic or eclogitic residue. However, recent geochemical models as well as basalt melting experiments have precluded MORB as a plausible source for TTGs. Rather, geochemical and experimental evidences indicate that formation of TTG required a LILE-enriched source, similar to oceanic plateau basalts. Moreover, subduction is a continuous process, while continental growth is episodic. Several “super-growth events” have been identified at ~ 4.2, ~ 3.8, ~ 3.2, ~ 2.7, ~ 1.8, ~ 1.1, and ~ 0.5 Ga, which is inconsistent with the regular pattern that would be expected from a subduction-driven process. In order to account for this periodicity, it has been proposed that, as subduction proceeds, descending residual slabs accumulate at the 660-km seismic discontinuity. When stored oceanic crust exceeds a certain mass threshold, it rapidly sinks into the mantle as a cold avalanche, which induces the ascent of mantle plumes that in turn produce large amounts of magmas resulting in oceanic plateaus. However, melting at the base of thick oceanic plateaus does not appear to be a realistic process that can account for TTG genesis. Modern oceanic plateaus contain only small volumes (? 5%) of felsic magmas generally formed by high degrees of fractional crystallization of basaltic magmas. The composition of these felsic magmas drastically differs from that of TTGs. In Iceland, the interaction between a mantle plume and the mid-Atlantic ridge gives rise to an anomalously (Archaean-like) high geothermal gradient resulting in thick basaltic crust able to melt at shallow depth. Even in this favorable context though, the characteristic Archaean TTG trace element signature is not being produced. Consequently, internal recycling of oceanic plateaus does not appear to be a suitable process for the genesis of Archaean continental crust. A possible alternative to this scenario is the subduction of oceanic plateaus. This hypothesis is supported by a present-day analog. In Ecuador, the Carnegie ridge, which is an oceanic plateau resulting from the Galapagos hot spot activity, is being subducted beneath the South American plate. Not only are the resulting magmas adakitic (TTG-like) in composition, but the volcanic productivity is several times greater than in other parts of the Andean volcanic arc. Above the location where the plateau is subducted, the arc is wide and the quaternary volcanoes numerous (about 80 active edifices). The volcanic productivity of each individual volcano also is more intense than away from the subduction focal point with an average output rate of about 0.4-0.5 km3·ka- 1 compared with only about 0.05-0.2 km3·ka- 1 for production rates at volcanoes erupting in the rest of the arc. Consequently, we infer that occasional subduction of oceanic plateaus throughout Earth's history can account for the episodic nature of crustal growth. Additionally, the generation by this mechanism of huge volumes of TTG-like magmas would readily dominate the crustal growth record.

  18. The Neo-Tethyan subduction zone(s,?) in Azerbaijan, NW Iran: preliminary results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lechmann, Anna; Burg, Jean-Pierre; Faridi, Mohammad

    2015-04-01

    Azerbaijan in NW Iran, and in particular the Khoy ophiolitic complex, require more detailed documentation to integrate them as elements of the Alpine-Himalayan orogenic belt. They are attributed to multiple accretion and collision after subduction and closure of the Tethys Ocean and related seaways. We are interested in the pre- to syn-collisional relationships between the ophiolitic, arc and other magmatic units. This work investigates to what extent single or multiple collisions and orogeny have shaped the NW Iranian Plateau. In particular, we want to understand the changes in deformation style within the collision zone and the effects of several possibly coeval events such as closure of two suture zones separated by an arc and possibly followed by slab break-off(s). Fieldwork focused on sampling the different magmatic rock units to specify the structural record and the structural relationships between the various lithological units. Cretaceous to Quaternary, regionally distributed magmatic rocks were collected to have good resolution of their changes in space and time. Petrological, geochemical and isotope studies will characterize magmatic rocks and their sources. Major and trace element geochemistry of mantle and crustal suites of the Khoy ophiolitic complex help to constrain the tectonic setting. Two complexes were defined on the basis of K-Ar dating (Khalatbari-Jafari et al., 2004). An older, probably subducted ophiolite of Triassic-Jurassic age and a younger non-metamorphic ophiolite of Late Cretaceous age. Fossil-bearing sediments provide stratigraphic ages of important contacts. Preliminary results are present in form of bulk rock and trace element chemistry of ultramafic and mafic rocks of the Khoy ophiolite(s, ?) and offer a first possibility to compare the data with already existing publications. Additionally, petrological studies of various magmatic rocks present first products for a starting discussion on the geodynamic evolution of the NW part of Iran. This work is supported by SNF Research Grant (project 200021_153124/1). REFERENCE Khalatbari-Jafari, M., Juteau, T., Bellon, H., Whitechurch, H., Cotton, J. & Emami, H. 2004: New geological, geochronological and geochemical investigations on the Khoy ophiolites and related formations, NW Iran. Journal of Asian Earth Sciences, 23, 507-535.

  19. Subduction zones beneath Indonesia imaged by Rayleigh wave phase velocity tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, F.; Yang, T.; Harmon, N.

    2013-12-01

    Situated at the junction of several tectonic plates including Indian-Australia, Eurasia, and Philippine Sea, the Indonesian archipelago is one of the most tectonically complex regions on earth with subductions, collisions and accretions occurring along and within its boundaries. A high-resolution lithospheric and upper mantle model, therefore, is needed to understand these complex processes beneath this region. We present a phase velocity model derived from teleseismic Rayleigh waves recorded at seismic stations in this region. We use the modified version of the two-plane wave tomography, in which the non-planar effects of surface wave propagation such as multipathing and scattering are accounted for by two plane wave interference and using of finite frequency kernels. We measure the amplitudes and phases at 16 individual periods ranging from 20s to 150s for the fundamental mode of Rayleigh waves at over 30 stations. 254 earthquakes are selected from global events greater than Ms 5.5 in the distance range of 25°- 150°. To account for the wavefield inconsistencies among stations for each earthquake due to the large scale of our study region, we divide the seismic array into 4 groups of stations in the two-plane wave parameter inversion. The phase velocity maps from our preliminary results show coherent features between adjacent periods. The most dominant structure in phase velocity maps for all periods is the strong fast-velocity belts beneath Sunda Trench, Java Trench, Timor Trough and the trenches around Celebes Sea, which shift gradually toward the subduction directions. The strength of the high velocity anomaly varies among trenches, likely suggesting the different age of subducting slabs. In addition, a velocity contrast in the middle of Borneo appears to mark the Lupar Line, a boundary between the stable Sundaland continental core and fragments of ophiolitic and Asian continental material accreted to Borneo during the Cretaceous. The 3-D shear wave structure derived from these 2-D phase velocity maps at different periods, which is in progress, certainly will sharpen the images of the complex subduction system, unraveling more geodynamic processes in this region.

  20. On protolith-, metamorphic overprint, microstructure and rheology of mineral assemblages in orogenic peridotites of the central Scandinavian Caledonides

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gilio, Mattia; Clos, Frediano; Van Roermund, Herman L. M.

    2013-04-01

    The Scandinavian Caledonides (SC) are a deeply eroded Alpine-type orogenic belt formed by closure of the Iapetus ocean and collision between Baltica and Laurentia (500-380 Ma). The SC consists of a stack of Nappe Complexes (from bottom to top called Lower, Middle, Upper and Uppermost Allochthons) thrusted to the east over the Baltic Shield (Brueckner and Van Roermund, 2004; Gee et al., 2008). Fossil lithospheric mantle fragments, called orogenic peridotites, have been found within the (upper part of) middle, upper and uppermost Allochthons, as well as in the reworked basement gneisses (a.o Western Gneiss Complex (WGC)) along the Norwegian west coast. They occur as isolated lenses that contain diverse mineral parageneses and/or bulk rock compositions. Crustal incorporation of orogenic peridotite is classically interpreted to be the result of plate collisional processes related to orogeny (Brueckner and Medaris, 2000). The WGC and parts of the upper part of the Middle Allochthon (a.o. Seve Nappe Complex (SNC) in N Jämtland/S Västerbotten, central Sweden), are well known for the occurrence of high (HP) and ultrahigh pressure (UHP) metamorphic terranes (of Caledonian age). The (U)HPM evidence clearly demonstrates the deep metamorphic origin of these rocks interpreted to be caused by continental subduction and/or collision. Other metamorphic rocks (of Caledonian age) exposed in allochthonous nappes are solely characterised by greenschist-, amphibolite- and/or MP granulite "facies" mineral assemblages that can be interpreted, in the absence of retrogression, to have formed in less deeply subducted (and/or metamorphic) environments. This duality in metamorphic</