Science.gov

Sample records for afar mantle plume

  1. The mantle transition zone beneath the Afar Depression and adjacent regions: implications for mantle plumes and hydration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reed, C. A.; Gao, S. S.; Liu, K. H.; Yu, Y.

    2016-06-01

    The Afar Depression and its adjacent areas are underlain by an upper mantle marked by some of the world's largest negative velocity anomalies, which are frequently attributed to the thermal influences of a lower-mantle plume. In spite of numerous studies, however, the existence of a plume beneath the area remains enigmatic, partially due to inadequate quantities of broad-band seismic data and the limited vertical resolution at the mantle transition zone (MTZ) depth of the techniques employed by previous investigations. In this study, we use an unprecedented quantity (over 14 500) of P-to-S receiver functions (RFs) recorded by 139 stations from 12 networks to image the 410 and 660 km discontinuities and map the spatial variation of the thickness of the MTZ. Non-linear stacking of the RFs under a 1-D velocity model shows robust P-to-S conversions from both discontinuities, and their apparent depths indicate the presence of an upper-mantle low-velocity zone beneath the entire study area. The Afar Depression and the northern Main Ethiopian Rift are characterized by an apparent 40-60 km depression of both MTZ discontinuities and a normal MTZ thickness. The simplest and most probable interpretation of these observations is that the apparent depressions are solely caused by velocity perturbations in the upper mantle and not by deeper processes causing temperature or hydration anomalies within the MTZ. Thickening of the MTZ on the order of 15 km beneath the southern Arabian Plate, southern Red Sea and western Gulf of Aden, which comprise the southward extension of the Afro-Arabian Dome, could reflect long-term hydration of the MTZ. A 20 km thinning of the MTZ beneath the western Ethiopian Plateau is observed and interpreted as evidence for a possible mantle plume stem originating from the lower mantle.

  2. Seismically imaging the Afar plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hammond, J. O.; Kendall, J. M.; Bastow, I. D.; Stuart, G. W.; Keir, D.; Ayele, A.; Ogubazghi, G.; Ebinger, C. J.; Belachew, M.

    2011-12-01

    Plume related flood basalt volcanism in Ethiopia has long been cited to have instigated continental breakup in northeast Africa. However, to date seismic images of the mantle beneath the region have not produced conclusive evidence of a plume-like structure. As a result the nature and even existence of a plume in the region and its role in rift initiation and continental rupture are debated. Previous seismic studies using regional deployments of sensors in East-Africa show that low seismic velocities underlie northeast Africa, but their resolution is limited to the top 200-300km of the Earth. Thus, the connection between the low velocities in the uppermost mantle and those imaged in global studies in the lower mantle is unclear. We have combined new data from Afar, Ethiopia with 6 other regional experiments and global network stations across Ethiopia, Eritrea, Djibouti and Yemen, to produce high-resolution models of upper mantle P- and S- wave velocities to the base of the transition zone. Relative travel time tomographic inversions show that the top 100km is dominated by focussed low velocity zones, likely associated with melt in the lithosphere/uppermost asthenosphere. Below these depths a broad SW-NE oriented sheet like upwelling extends down to the top of the transition zone. Within the transition zone two focussed sharp-sided low velocity regions exist: one beneath the Western Ethiopian plateau outside the rift valley, and the other beneath the Afar depression. The nature of the transition zone anomalies suggests that small upwellings may rise from a broader low velocity plume-like feature in the lower mantle. This interpretation is supported by numerical and analogue experiments that suggest the 660km phase change and viscosity jump may impede flow from the lower to upper mantle creating a thermal boundary layer at the base of the transition zone. This allows smaller, secondary upwellings to initiate and rise to the surface. Our images of secondary upwellings

  3. Which mantle below the active rift segments in Afar?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pik, Raphael; Stab, Martin; Ancellin, Marie-Anne; Sarah, Medynski; Cloquet, Christophe; Vye-Brown, Charlotte; Ayalew, Dereje; Chazot, Gilles; Bellahsen, Nicolas; Leroy, Sylvie

    2014-05-01

    The evolution of mantle sources beneath the Ethiopian volcanic province has long been discussed and debated with a long-lived controversy in identifying mantle reservoirs and locating them in the mantle. One interpretation of the isotopic composition of erupted lavas considers that the Afar mantle plume composition is best expressed by recent lavas from Afar and Gulf of Aden (e.g. Erta Ale, Manda Inakir and the 45°E torus anomaly on the Gulf of Aden) implying that all other volcanics (including other active segments and the initial flood basalt province) result from mixing of this plume component with additional lithospheric and asthenospheric components. A completely opposite view considers that the initial Oligocene continental flood basalts best represent the isotopic composition of the Afar mantle plume, which is subsequently mixed in various proportions with continental lithospheric mantle for generating some of the specific signature of Miocene and Quaternary volcanics. The precise and correct identification of mantle components involved in the generation of magmas is of particular importance because this is the only way to document the participation of mantle during extension and its potential role in break-up processes. In this contribution we provide new isotopic data for central Afar and we revisit the whole data set of the Ethiopian volcanic province in order to: (i) precisely identify the distinct mantle components implicated and (ii) discuss their location and evolution not only considering geochemical mixings, but also taking into account additional characteristics of erupted magmatic suites (volumes, location and relationships with amount of extension and segmentation). This new interpretation of geochemical data allows reconsidering the evolution of mantle in the course of rift evolution. In terms of mantle sources, two populations of active segments are frontally opposed in the volcanic province: those that share exactly the same composition with

  4. Plume- Ridge Lithospheric Interactions: Cases of Afar (Africa)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Montagner, J. P.; Stutzmann, E.; Sicilia, D.; Sebai, A.; Beucler, E.; Silveira, G.; Cara, M.; Debayle, E.; Leveque, J. J.

    2003-04-01

    Detection of mantle plumes in geophysical and geochemical data is controversial and trigger vigorous debates. It remains unclear how plumes are formed, their origin at depth, and whether they act independently from plate tectonics. We may learn about the role of plumes in mantle dynamics by studying their interactions with lithosphere and crust below ridges and the way in which they perturb the flow pattern in the uppermost mantle. Several regional tomographic studies of seismic velocity and anisotropy around several hotspots were obtained during the last 2 years. Their lateral resolution is smaller than 1000km and they enable to make qualitative intercomparison between Afar (Horn of Africa Program), Azores (COSEA project) in the Atlantic, La Reunion in the Indian Ocean and Pacific provinces hotspots. These models demonstrate that there is not only one family of plumes but several ones. Some plumes are confined in the uppermost 200km but a few can originate in the transition zone and even at the Core-mantle Boundary for superplumes. Seismic anisotropy which is a good marker of deformation processes and mantle flow pattern, shows that the interaction between a plume and a ridge below the lithosphere can occur over distances larger than 1000km, via sublithospheric channels. The existence of LACs (Low Anisotropy Channels) below the Pacific plate seems to be intimately related to the active hotspots in Central Pacific and indicate a future reorganization of plate boundaries. Another important consequence of the interaction between plume and ridge is the triggering of secondary convection in the asthenosphere, which will be discussed during the presentation.

  5. Upper Mantle Structure beneath Afar: inferences from surface waves.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sicilia, D.; Montagner, J.; Debayle, E.; Lepine, J.; Leveque, J.; Cara, M.; Ataley, A.; Sholan, J.

    2001-12-01

    The Afar hotspot is related to one of the most important plume from a geodynamic point of view. It has been advocated to be the surface expression of the South-West African Superswell. Below the lithosphere, the Afar plume might feed other hotspots in central Africa (Hadiouche et al., 1989; Ebinger & Sleep, 1998). The processes of interaction between crust, lithosphere and plume are not well understood. In order to gain insight into the scientific issue, we have performed a surface-wave tomography covering the Horn of Africa. A data set of 1404 paths for Rayleigh waves and 473 paths for Love waves was selected in the period range 45-200s. They were collected from the permanent IRIS and GEOSCOPE networks and from the PASSCAL experiment, in Tanzania and Saudi Arabia. Other data come from the broadband stations deployed in Ethiopia and Yemen in the framework of the French INSU program ``Horn of Africa''. The results presented here come from a path average phase velocities obtained with a method based on a least-squares minimization (Beucler et al., 2000). The local phase velocity distribution and the azimuthal anisotropy were simultaneously retrieved by using the tomographic technique of Montagner (1986). A correction of the data is applied according to the crustal structure of the 3SMAC model (Nataf & Ricard, 1996). We find low velocities down to 200 km depth beneath the Red Sea, the Gulf of Aden, Afars, the Ethiopian Plateau and southern Arabia. High velocities are present in the eastern Arabia and the Tanzania Craton. The anisotropy beneath Afar seems to be complex, but enables to map the flow pattern at the interface lithosphere-asthenosphere. The results presented here are complementary to those obtained by Debayle et al. (2001) at upper-mantle transition zone depths using waveform inversion of higher Rayle igh modes.

  6. The mantle sources beneath the Afar volcanic province and their interplay with extension

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pik, Raphael; Stab, Martin; Ancellin, Marie-Anne; Medynski, Sarah; Cloquet, Christophe; Ayalew, Dereje; Yirgu, Gezahegn; Chazot, Gilles; Vye-Brown, Charlotte; Bellahsen, Nicolas; Leroy, Sylvie

    2015-04-01

    The evolution of mantle sources beneath the Ethiopian volcanic province has long been discussed and debated with a long-lived controversy in identifying mantle reservoirs and locating them in the mantle. One interpretation of the isotopic composition of erupted lavas considers that the Afar mantle plume composition is best expressed by recent lavas from Afar and Gulf of Aden (e.g. Erta Ale, Manda Inakir and the 45°E torus anomaly on the Gulf of Aden) implying that all other volcanics (including other active segments and the initial flood basalt province) result from mixing of this plume component with additional lithospheric and asthenospheric components. A completely opposite view considers that the initial Oligocene continental flood basalts best represent the isotopic composition of the Afar mantle plume, which is subsequently mixed in various proportions with continental lithospheric mantle for generating some of the specific signature of Miocene and Quaternary volcanics. The precise and correct identification of mantle components involved in the generation of magmas is of particular importance because this is the only way to document the participation of mantle during extension and its potential role in break-up processes. In this contribution we provide new isotopic data for central Afar and we revisit the whole data set of the Ethiopian volcanic province and African/Arabian intraplate volcanics in order to: (i) precisely identify the distinct mantle components implicated, (ii) discuss their location and evolution in space and time, and (3) link the evolution of mantle with extensional processes beneath the Afar province. This new interpretation of geochemical data allows reconsidering the evolution of mantle in the course of rift evolution. In terms of mantle sources, two populations of active segments are frontally opposed in the volcanic province: those that share exactly the same composition with plume related CFBs (e.g. the Manda Hararo and the Main

  7. Geochemical evidence of mantle reservoir evolution during progressive rifting along the western Afar margin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rooney, Tyrone O.; Mohr, Paul; Dosso, Laure; Hall, Chris

    2013-02-01

    The Afar triple junction, where the Red Sea, Gulf of Aden and African Rift System extension zones converge, is a pivotal domain for the study of continental-to-oceanic rift evolution. The western margin of Afar forms the southernmost sector of the western margin of the Red Sea rift where that margin enters the Ethiopian flood basalt province. Tectonism and volcanism at the triple junction had commenced by ˜31 Ma with crustal fissuring, diking and voluminous eruption of the Ethiopian-Yemen flood basalt pile. The dikes which fed the Oligocene-Quaternary lava sequence covering the western Afar rift margin provide an opportunity to probe the geochemical reservoirs associated with the evolution of a still active continental margin. 40Ar/39Ar geochronology reveals that the western Afar margin dikes span the entire history of rift evolution from the initial Oligocene flood basalt event to the development of focused zones of intrusion in rift marginal basins. Major element, trace element and isotopic (Sr-Nd-Pb-Hf) data demonstrate temporal geochemical heterogeneities resulting from variable contributions from the Afar plume, depleted asthenospheric mantle, and African lithosphere. The various dikes erupted between 31 Ma and 22 Ma all share isotopic signatures attesting to a contribution from the Afar plume, indicating this initial period in the evolution of the Afar margin was one of magma-assisted weakening of the lithosphere. From 22 Ma to 12 Ma, however, diffuse diking during continued evolution of the rift margin facilitated ascent of magmas in which depleted mantle and lithospheric sources predominated, though contributions from the Afar plume persisted. After 10 Ma, magmatic intrusion migrated eastwards towards the Afar rift floor, with an increasing fraction of the magmas derived from depleted mantle with less of a lithospheric signature. The dikes of the western Afar margin reveal that magma generation processes during the evolution of this continental rift margin

  8. Mantle plumes and associated flow beneath Arabia and East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chang, Sung-Joon; Van der Lee, Suzan

    2011-02-01

    We investigate mantle plumes and associated flow beneath the lithosphere by imaging the three-dimensional S-velocity structure beneath Arabia and East Africa. This image shows elongated vertical and horizontal low-velocity anomalies down to at least mid mantle depths. This three-dimensional S-velocity model is obtained through the joint inversion of teleseismic S- and SKS-arrival times, regional S- and Rayleigh waveform fits, fundamental-mode Rayleigh-wave group velocities, and independent Moho constraints from receiver functions, reflection/refraction profiles, and gravity measurements. In the resolved parts of our S-velocity model we find that the Afar plume is distinctly separate from the Kenya plume, showing the Afar plume's origin in the lower mantle beneath southwestern Arabia. We identify another quasi-vertical low-velocity anomaly beneath Jordan and northern Arabia which extends into the lower mantle and may be related to volcanism in Jordan, northern Arabia, and possibly southern Turkey. Comparing locations of mantle plumes from the joint inversion with fast axes of shear-wave splitting, we confirm horizontal mantle flow radially away from Afar. Low-velocity channels in our model support southwestward flow beneath Ethiopia, eastward flow beneath the Gulf of Aden, but not northwestwards beneath the entire Red Sea. Instead, northward mantle flow from Afar appears to be channeled beneath Arabia.

  9. Upper mantle temperature and the onset of extension and break-up in Afar, Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Armitage, John J.; Ferguson, David J.; Goes, Saskia; Hammond, James O. S.; Calais, Eric; Rychert, Catherine A.; Harmon, Nicholas

    2015-05-01

    It is debated to what extent mantle plumes play a role in continental rifting and eventual break-up. Afar lies at the northern end of the largest and most active present-day continental rift, where the East African Rift forms a triple junction with the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden rifts. It has a history of plume activity yet recent studies have reached conflicting conclusions on whether a plume still contributes to current Afar tectonics. A geochemical study concluded that Afar is a mature hot rift with 80 km thick lithosphere, while seismic data have been interpreted to reflect the structure of a young, oceanic rift basin above mantle of normal temperature. We develop a self-consistent forward model of mantle flow that incorporates melt generation and retention to test whether predictions of melt chemistry, melt volume and lithosphere-asthenosphere seismic structure can be reconciled with observations. The rare-earth element composition of mafic samples at the Erta Ale, Dabbahu and Asal magmatic segments can be used as both a thermometer and chronometer of the rifting process. Low seismic velocities require a lithosphere thinned to 50 km or less. A strong positive impedance contrast at 50 to 70 km below the rift seems linked to the melt zone, but is not reproduced by isotropic seismic velocity alone. Combined, the simplest interpretation is that mantle temperature below Afar is still elevated at 1450 °C, rifting started around 22-23 Ma, and the lithosphere has thinned from 100 to 50 km to allow significant decompressional melting.

  10. Mantle convection in the Middle East: Reconciling Afar upwelling, Arabia indentation and Aegean trench rollback

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Faccenna, Claudio; Becker, Thorsten W.; Jolivet, Laurent; Keskin, Mehmet

    2013-08-01

    The Middle East region represents a key site within the Tethyan domain where continental break-up, collision, backarc extension and escape tectonics are kinematically linked together. We perform global mantle circulation computations to test the role of slab pull and mantle upwellings as driving forces for the kinematics of the Arabia-Anatolia-Aegean (AAA) system, evaluating different boundary conditions and mantle density distributions as inferred from seismic tomography or slab models. Model results are compared with geodetically inferred crustal motions, residual topography, and shear wave splitting measurements. The AAA velocity field with respect to Eurasia shows an anti-clockwise toroidal pattern, with increasing velocities toward the Aegean trench. The best match to these crustal motions can be obtained by combining the effect of slab pull exerted in the Aegean with a mantle upwelling underneath Afar and, more generally, with the large-scale flow associated with a whole mantle, Tethyan convection cell. Neogene volcanism for AAA is widespread, not only in the extensional or subduction settings, but also within plates, such as in Syria-Jordan-Israel and in Turkey, with geochemical fingerprints similar of those of the Afar lava. In addition, morphological features show large uplifting domains far from plate boundaries. We speculate that the tectonic evolution of AAA is related to the progressive northward entrainment of upwelling mantle material, which is itself associated with the establishment of the downwelling part of a convection cell through the segmented Tethyan slab below the northern Zagros and Bitlis collision zone. The recently established westward flow dragged Anatolia and pushed the Aegean slab south-westward, thus accelerating backarc extension. Our model reconciles Afar plume volcanism, the collision in the Bitlis mountains and northern Zagros, and the rapid increase of Aegean trench rollback in a single coherent frame of large scale mantle

  11. Multiple mantle upwellings through the transition zone beneath the Afar Depression?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hammond, J. O.; Kendall, J. M.; Stuart, G. W.; Thompson, D. A.; Ebinger, C. J.; Keir, D.; Ayele, A.; Goitom, B.; Ogubazghi, G.

    2012-12-01

    Previous seismic studies using regional deployments of sensors in East-Africa show that low seismic velocities underlie Africa, but their resolution is limited to the top 200-300km of the Earth. Thus, the connection between the low velocities in the uppermost mantle and those imaged in global studies in the lower mantle is unclear. We have combined new data from Afar, Ethiopia with 7 other regional experiments and global network stations across Kenya, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Djibouti and Yemen, to produce high-resolution models of upper mantle P- and S-wave velocities to the base of the transition zone. Relative travel time tomographic inversions show that within the transition zone two focussed sharp-sided low velocity regions exist: one beneath the Western Ethiopian plateau outside the rift valley, and the other beneath the Afar depression. Estimates of transition zone thickness suggest that this is unlikely to be an artefact of mantle discontinuity topography as a transition zone of normal thickness underlies the majority of Afar and surrounding regions. However, a low velocity layer is evident directly above the 410 discontinuity, co-incident with some of the lowest seismic velocities suggesting that smearing of a strong low velocity layer of limited depth extent may contribute to the tomographic models in north-east Afar. The combination of seismic constraints suggests that small low temperature (<50K) upwellings may rise from a broader low velocity plume-like feature in the lower mantle. This interpretation is supported by numerical and analogue experiments that suggest the 660km phase change and viscosity jump may impede flow from the lower to upper mantle creating a thermal boundary layer at the base of the transition zone. This allows smaller, secondary upwellings to initiate and rise to the surface. These, combined with possible evidence of melt above the 410 discontinuity can explain the seismic velocity models. Our images of secondary upwellings suggest that

  12. The He isotope composition of the earliest picrites erupted by the Ethiopia plume, implications for mantle plume source

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stuart, Finlay; Rogers, Nick; Davies, Marc

    2016-04-01

    The earliest basalts erupted by mantle plumes are Mg-rich, and typically derived from mantle with higher potential temperature than those derived from the convecting upper mantle at mid-ocean ridges and ocean islands. The chemistry and isotopic composition of picrites from CFB provide constraints on the composition of deep Earth and thus the origin and differentiation history. We report new He-Sr-Nd-Pb isotopic composition of the picrites from the Ethiopian flood basalt province from the Dilb (Chinese Road) section. They are characterized by high Fe and Ti contents for MgO = 10-22 wt. % implying that the parent magma was derived from a high temperature low melt fraction, most probably from the Afar plume head. The picrite 3He/4He does not exceed 21 Ra, and there is a negative correlation with MgO, the highest 3He/4He corresponding to MgO = 15.4 wt. %. Age-corrected 87Sr/86Sr (0.70392-0.70408) and 143Nd/144Nd (0.512912-0.512987) display little variation and are distinct from MORB and OIB. Age-corrected Pb isotopes display a significant range (e.g. 206Pb/204Pb = 18.70-19.04) and plot above the NHRL. These values contrast with estimates of the modern Afar mantle plume which has lower 3He/4He and Sr, Nd and Pb isotope ratios that are more comparable with typical OIB. These results imply either interaction between melts derived from the Afar mantle plume and a lithospheric component, or that the original Afar mantle plume had a rather unique radiogenic isotope composition. Regardless of the details of the origins of this unusual signal, our observations place a minimum 3He/4He value of 21 Ra for the Afar mantle plume, significantly greater than the present day value of 16 Ra, implying a significant reduction over 30 Myr. In addition the Afar source was less degassed than convecting mantle but more degassed than mantle sampled by the proto-Iceland plume (3He/4He ~50 Ra). This suggests that the largest mantle plumes are not sourced in a single deep mantle domain with a

  13. Structure of axisymmetric mantle plumes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Olson, Peter; Schubert, Gerald; Anderson, Charles

    1993-01-01

    The structure of axisymmetric subsolidus thermal plumes in the earth's lower mantle is inferred from calculations of axisymmetric thermal plumes in an infinite Prandtl number fluid with thermally activated viscosity. The velocity and temperature distribution is determined for axisymmetric convection above a heated disk in an incompressible fluid cylinder 2,400 km in height and 1,200 km in diameter. Several calculations of plumes with heat transport in the range 100-400 GW, similar to the advective heat transport at the Hawaiian hotspot, are presented. Hotspot formation by plumes originating at the base of the mantle requires both large viscosity variations and a minimum heat transport.

  14. The geochemical and Sr-Nd-Pb-He isotopic characterization of the mantle source of Rungwe Volcanic Province: comparison with the Afar mantle domain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Castillo, P. R.; Hilton, D. R.; Halldorsson, S. A.; Wang, R.

    2012-12-01

    The ultimate source of heat and magmatism associated with continental rifting in the East African Rift System (EARS) is generally viewed to be the African Superplume, but there is continuing debate on the surface expression of this large anomalous feature, which originates in the lower mantle. Previous studies have demonstrated an insignificant role for crustal contamination thereby identifying a single mantle plume signature in Quaternary basalts from the Main Ethiopian Rift in the northern EARS. This is designated to be the Afar plume and is characterized by, e.g., 3He/4He >15 RA, 206Pb/204Pb = 19.5 and 87Sr/86Sr = 0.7035 [Rooney et al., J. Pet. 53, 2012]. In contrast, the signature of plume(s) in the southern EARS is less constrained. Rogers et al. [EPSL 176, 2000] proposed a plume in the sub-lithospheric Kenyan mantle with characteristically lower 43Nd/144Nd than the Afar plume whereas Furman [JAES 48, 2007] advocated a high μ [HIMU] plume based primarily on the high 206Pb/204Pb ratios of lavas in all areas within and south of the Turkana Depression: both models assume a 3He/4He lower than the Afar plume. Here we report the trace element and Sr-Nd-Pb isotopic composition of basaltic lavas from the Rungwe Volcanic Province (RVP) in the southern extreme of the Western Rift previously identified as a high 3He/4He locality (~15 RA; [Hilton et al., GRL 38, 2011]). Trace element analyses are within the previously reported range of lava compositions that include a relatively large lithospheric component. More importantly, we identify correlations among incompatible trace element and isotopic ratios (e.g., 3He/4He vs 206Pb/204Pb, Rb/Sr, Nb/Ta; 87Sr/86Sr vs 208Pb/204Pb). Our new results suggest the presence of a distinct, high 3He/4He mantle source beneath RVP that is more radiogenic (e.g., 206Pb/204Pb up to ~19.8; 87Sr/86Sr up to 0.7055) than the Afar mantle plume. There is also very little or no HIMU signature in RPV basalts based on their high Sr and low Nd isotopic

  15. Revisiting Hotspots and Mantle Plumes: Some Phenomenology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    King, S. D.; White-Gaynor, A. L.

    2012-12-01

    Sleep (1990) used gravity, topography and heat flow from 37 hotspots to ``constrain the mechanism for swell uplift and to obtain fluxes and excess temperatures of mantle plumes,'' complementing a previous analysis by Davies (1988). We repeat that analysis for the same 37 hotspots using gravity from EGM2008 and topography from ETOPO1 (Amante and Eakins, 2009). EGM2008 is complete to spherical harmonic degree and order 2159, or roughly 20 km spatial resolution (Pavlis et al., 2012). The vertical accuracy of ETOPO1 is on the order of 10 meters. With these new models we hope to improve the uplift and subsidence rates along all 37 hotspot tracks--one of the major limitations the previous work. For example, of the 37 hotspots considered Sleep ranked only 7 with good reliability while 14 were fair and 16 were poor. With this new information we can compare and contrast hotspots with various other groupings of hotspots based on tomographic images of mantle structure (Montelli et al, 2003), primary versus secondary hotspots (Courtillot et al., 2003) or relationship to cratonic boundaries (King, 2008). One encounters some puzzles when attempting to reconcile buoyancy fluxes with other groupings of hotspots and/or observations. For example, Coutillot et al.'s seven primary hotspots include: Afar, Easter, Hawaii, Iceland, Louisville, Réunion, and Tristan. Sleep (1990) categorized the reliability of the buoyancy flux calculated by from Afar, Hawaii, Iceland, and Réunion as good, while Tristan and Easter were fair and Louisville was poor. The calculated buoyancy fluxes from Macdonald and Marqueses (both listed as fair) are twice as large as those from Iceland, Tristan, and Réunion. While we recognize that these observations cannot uniquely constrain the origin of these anomalies, better observations should help test various hypotheses.

  16. Redox conditions for mantle plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heister, L. E.; Lesher, C. E.

    2005-12-01

    The vanadium to scandium ratio (V/Sc) for basalts from mid-ocean ridge (MOR) and arc environments has been proposed as a proxy for fO2 conditions during partial melting (e.g. [1] and [2]). Contrary to barometric measurements of the fO2 of primitive lavas, the V/Sc ratio of the upper mantle at mid-ocean ridges and arcs is similar, leading previous authors to propose that the upper mantle has uniform redox potential and is well-buffered. We have attempted to broaden the applicability of the V/Sc parameter to plume-influenced localities (both oceanic and continental), where mantle heterogeneities associated with recycled sediments, mafic crust, and metasomatized mantle, whether of shallow or deep origin, exist. We find that primitive basalts from the North Atlantic Igneous Province (NAIP), Hawaii (both the Loa and Kea trends), Deccan, Columbia River, and Siberian Traps show a range of V/Sc ratios that are generally higher (average ~9) than those for MOR (average ~ 6.7) or arc (average ~7) lavas. Based on forward polybaric decompression modeling, we attribute these differences to polybaric melting and melt segregation within the garnet stability field rather than the presence of a more oxidized mantle in plume-influenced settings. Like MORB, the V/Sc ratios for plume-influenced basalts can be accounted for by an oxidation state approximately one log unit below the Ni-NiO buffer (NNO-1). Our analysis suggests that source heterogeneities have little, if any, resolvable influence on mantle redox conditions, although they have significant influence on the trace element and isotopic composition of mantle-derived melts. We suggest that variations in the redox of erupted lavas is largely a function of shallow lithospheric processes rather than intrinsic to the mantle source, regardless of tectonic setting. [1] Li and Lee (2004) EPSL, [2] Lee et al. (2005) J. of Petrology

  17. Afar plume, Anatolia escape and Aegean rollback are features of the Arabia-Middle East convection system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Becker, T. W.; Faccenna, C.; Jolivet, L.

    2012-12-01

    The Arabia-Anatolia-Aegean (AAA) system represents a key site within the Tethyan domain where continental break-up, collision, and escape tectonics are linked together. This offers an opportunity to study the forces that drive and deform the continental lithosphere within a convecting mantle. We perform global mantle circulation computations to test the role of slab pull and mantle upwellings as driving forces for the kinematics of the AAA system, evaluating different boundary conditions and mantle density distributions as inferred from seismic tomography or slab models. Model result are compared with geodesy, residual topography and shear wave splitting. The AAA velocity field with respect to Eurasia shows an anti-clockwise toroidal pattern, with increasing velocities toward the Aegean trench. The best match to these crustal motions can be obtained by combining the effect of slab pull exerted in the Aegean with a mantle upwelling underneath Afar and, more generally, with the large-scale flow associated with a whole-mantle, Tethyan convection cell. Neogene volcanism for AAA is not confined to extensional or subduction settings but also found within plate interiors, such as in Syria-Jordan-Israel and in the collisional belt. In addition, morphological feature show large uplifting domains far from plate boundary. Such intraplate tectonics may all be associated with northward plume transport and the establishment of the Tethyan convection cell upon slab segmentation. Our model reconciles Afar plume volcanism, the collision on the Bitlis, and the rapid increase of Aegean trench rollback in a single coherent frame of large scale mantle convection, initiated during the last ~40 Ma.

  18. Upper mantle structure of shear-waves velocities and stratification of anisotropy in the Afar Hotspot region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sicilia, D.; Montagner, J.-P.; Cara, M.; Stutzmann, E.; Debayle, E.; Lépine, J.-C.; Lévêque, J.-J.; Beucler, E.; Sebai, A.; Roult, G.; Ayele, A.; Sholan, J. M.

    2008-12-01

    The Afar area is one of the biggest continental hotspots active since about 30 Ma. It may be the surface expression of a mantle "plume" related to the African Superswell. Central Africa is also characterized by extensive intraplate volcanism. Around the same time (30 Ma), volcanic activity re-started in several regions of the African plate and hotspots such as Darfur, Tibesti, Hoggar and Mount Cameroon, characterized by a significant though modest volcanic production. The interactions of mantle upwelling with asthenosphere, lithosphere and crust remain unclear and seismic anisotropy might help in investigating these complex interactions. We used data from the global seismological permanent FDSN networks (GEOSCOPE, IRIS, MedNet, GEO- FON, etc.), from the temporary PASSCAL experiments in Tanzania and Saudi Arabia and a French deployment of 5 portable broadband stations surrounding the Afar Hotspot. A classical two-step tomographic inversion from surface waves performed in the Horn of Africa with selected Rayleigh wave and Love wave seismograms leads to a 3D-model of both S V velocities and azimuthal anisotropy, as well as radial SH/ SV anisotropy, with a lateral resolution of 500 km. The region is characterized by low shear-wave velocities beneath the Afar Hotspot, the Red Sea, the Gulf of Aden and East of the Tanzania Craton to 400 km depth. High velocities are present in the Eastern Arabia and the Tanzania Craton. The results of this study enable us to rule out a possible feeding of the Central Africa hotspots from the "Afar plume" above 150-200 km. The azimuthal anisotropy displays a complex pattern near the Afar Hotspot. Radial anisotropy, although poorly resolved laterally, exhibits S H slower than S V waves down to about 150 km depth, and a reverse pattern below. Both azimuthal and radial anisotropies show a stratification of anisotropy at depth, corresponding to different physical processes. These results suggest that the Afar hotspot has a different and

  19. Uppermost mantle (Pn) velocity model for the Afar region, Ethiopia: an insight into rifting processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stork, A. L.; Stuart, G. W.; Henderson, C. M.; Keir, D.; Hammond, J. O. S.

    2013-04-01

    The Afar Depression, Ethiopia, offers unique opportunities to study the transition from continental rifting to oceanic spreading because the process is occurring onland. Using traveltime tomography and data from a temporary seismic deployment, we describe the first regional study of uppermost mantle P-wave velocities (VPn). We find two separate low VPn zones (as low as 7.2 km s-1) beneath regions of localized thinned crust in northern Afar, indicating the existence of high temperatures and, potentially, partial melt. The zones are beneath and off-axis from, contemporary crustal magma intrusions in active magmatic segments, the Dabbahu-Manda-Hararo and Erta'Ale segments. This suggests that these intrusions can be fed by off-axis delivery of melt in the uppermost mantle and that discrete areas of mantle upwelling and partial melting, thought to characterize segmentation of the uppermost mantle at seafloor spreading centres, are initiated during the final stages of break-up.

  20. Mantle structure beneath the Afar triple junction derived from surface wave tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gallacher, R. J.; Keir, D.; Harmon, N.; Stuart, G. W.; Leroy, S. D.; Hammond, J. O.; Kendall, J. M.; Wondem, A. A.; Gezahegn, B. G.; Ogubazghi, G.

    2013-12-01

    Continental breakup in Afar is generally magma-rich and occurs near the triple junction of the Gulf of Aden (GOA), Red Sea rift and the Main Ethiopian rift (MER). Hypotheses for the source of magmatism associated with this rifting include elevated mantle temperatures resulting from northward migration of hot African Superplume material, and also due to phases of increased decompression melting from rapid plate thinning. To evaluate these hypotheses we conducted a surface wave tomographic experiment using 571 events and 290 stations from 15 seismic networks deployed over the past 12 years. From these data we produced a 3D shear velocity model which constrains the upper 350 km of the Earth, including the lithosphere and uppermost asthenosphere where melt is produced. At 30-100 second periods, our images show a significant (~0.1 km/s) decrease in velocity from the rift flanks into the Afar depression, showing the signature of breakup between Africa and Arabia is still present throughout the mantle. Within Afar, seismic velocities are low, with particularly localised slow anomalies at the 40-second period, beneath the Asal rift (3.57 km/s), Ayelu segment of MER (3.63 km/s) and Dabbahu rift (3.63 km/s) and fast velocities on the rift flanks (3.70-3.80 km/s). These slow anomalies show localised decompression melting and intrusion beneath the rift axis of Afar. Low velocities are also present throughout the mantle beneath the northern section of the MER and in the GOA. Our results show that the mantle beneath Afar still preserves structure from rifting 30 Ma. In addition our results show that localised plate thinning beneath zones of strain focus magmatism to a narrow rift axis.

  1. Synthetic seismic signature of thermal mantle plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goes, S.; Hansen, U.

    2003-04-01

    With increasing resolution in global tomographic models and targeted regional experiments the first seismic images of mantle plumes have emerged. In order to obtain a better idea of the expected seismic signature of a purely thermal mantle plume we perform a set of three-dimensional numerical experiments with parameters relevant to the Earth's mantle. The thermal plumes thus obtained are converted into P- and S-velocity structure taking into account the effect of temperature, pressure, an average mantle composition including phase transitions and anelasticity on the seismic velocities. Excess plume temperatures were constrained to be about 300oC below the lithosphere to be consistent with surface observations. Models with depth-dependent expansivity and conductivity and temperature and depth-dependent viscosity predict plumes that are 500-800 km wide in the lower mantle. An abrupt lowering of the viscosity above 660 km of at least a factor 30 can narrow upper mantle plumes to 100-200 km. Due to the varying sensitivity of seismic velocities to temperature with depth and mineralogy, variations in amplitude and width of the seismic plume do not coincide with the variations in the thermal structure of the plume. Anomalies of 2-4% are expected in the uppermost mantle. Reduced sensitivity in the transition zone as well as complexities due to phase boundary topography may hamper imaging continuous whole mantle plumes. Lower mantle plumes that are consistent with temperature constrasts of 100-300oC below the lithosphere will have seismic amplitudes of only 0.5-1%. Seismic anelasticity structure follows the thermal structure more closely and yields plume anomalies of 100-200% in dln(1/QS).

  2. Mantle plumes on Venus revisited

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kiefer, Walter S.

    1992-01-01

    The Equatorial Highlands of Venus consist of a series of quasicircular regions of high topography, rising up to about 5 km above the mean planetary radius. These highlands are strongly correlated with positive geoid anomalies, with a peak amplitude of 120 m at Atla Regio. Shield volcanism is observed at Beta, Eistla, Bell, and Atla Regiones and in the Hathor Mons-Innini Mons-Ushas Mons region of the southern hemisphere. Volcanos have also been mapped in Phoebe Regio and flood volcanism is observed in Ovda and Thetis Regiones. Extensional tectonism is also observed in Ovda and Thetis Regiones. Extensional tectonism is also observed in many of these regions. It is now widely accepted that at least Beta, Atla, Eistla, and Bell Regiones are the surface expressions of hot, rising mantel plumes. Upwelling plumes are consistent with both the volcanism and the extensional tectonism observed in these regions. The geoid anomalies and topography of these four regions show considerable variation. Peak geoid anomalies exceed 90 m at Beta and Atla, but are only 40 m at Eistla and 24 m at Bell. Similarly, the peak topography is greater at Beta and Atla than at Eistla and Bell. Such a range of values is not surprising because terrestrial hotspot swells also have a side range of geoid anomalies and topographic uplifts. Kiefer and Hager used cylindrical axisymmetric, steady-state convection calculations to show that mantle plumes can quantitatively account for both the amplitude and the shape of the long-wavelength geoid and topography at Beta and Atla. In these models, most of the topography of these highlands is due to uplift by the vertical normal stress associated with the rising plume. Additional topography may also be present due to crustal thickening by volcanism and crustal thinning by rifting. Smrekar and Phillips have also considered the geoid and topography of plumes on Venus, but they restricted themselves to considering only the geoid-topography ratio and did not

  3. Synthetic Seismic Signature of Thermal Mantle plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goes, S.; Hansen, U.

    2002-12-01

    With increasing resolution in global tomographic models and targeted regional experiments the first seismic images of mantle plumes have emerged. The low velocity anomalies interpreted as plumes are generally significantly more complex than the simple head-tail model of a mantle upwelling. Although some models show low velocities crossing the 660 km discontinuity, the significance of the lower mantle anomalies is still heavily debated. In order to obtain a better idea of the expected seismic signature of a mantle plume we perform a set of three-dimensional numerical experiments with parameters relevant to the Earth's mantle. The thermal plumes thus obtained are converted into P and S velocity structure taking into account the effect of temperature, pressure, an average mantle composition including phase transitions and anelasticity on the seismic velocities. Excess plume temperatures were constrained to be about 300oC below the lithosphere to be consistent with surface observations. Such plumes are 400-800 km wide. An abrupt lowering of the viscosity above 660 km causes additional narrowing in the upper mantle. VP (VS) anomalies range from -2.2 (-4) % above the transition zone to -0.5 (-1) % in the lower mantle. Due to the varying sensitivity of seismic velocities to temperature with depth and mineralogy, variations in amplitude and width of the seismic plume do not coincide with the variations in the thermal structure of the plume. Reduced sensitivity in the transition zone may hamper imaging continuous whole mantle plumes. Seismic anelasticity structure follows the thermal structure more closely and yields plume anomalies of up to 200% in dln(1/QS).

  4. 3-d numerical modeling for the interaction of mantle plumes with cratonic keel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, S.; Kuo, B.

    2003-04-01

    The magmatism of the Ethiopian and east African plateaus is one of the largest active continental igneous provinces on Earth. Great volumes of volcanic deposits have been thought to be originated from the upwelling mantle or plumes under the African continent [e.g., Ebinger et al., 1989]. Major, trace element and radiogenic isotope ratios (Sr, Nd and Pb) and the dating data [George et al., 1998] suggest that there are at least two mantle plumes, i.e., the latter Afar plume and earlier Kenya plume, beneath the East African rift system. It was proposed [e.g., Rogers et al., 2000] that the northeastward plate motion over the Kenya plume produced the magmatism from southern Ethiopia to northern Tanzania since about 45 Ma, and that the Afar plume later generated the magma in the Ethiopia Plateau. Meanwhile, it has been found that the Tanzania Craton in central Africa has survived the thermal erosion of the mantle plumes and the extensional tectonics in this region [e.g., Ritsema and van Heijst, 2000]. Here we investigate how the plume material changes its directions when it meets the tectonically stable cratonic keel using 3-D numerical experiments. The stronger temperature dependence of viscosity as well as the hotter plumes can at times provide higher buoyancy flux and determine how far the plume material can reach. In the meantime, the cratonic keel can divert the plume material and induce the edge-driven convection. Numerical models have been designed to address the double-plume hypothesis, in which the plumes were initiated at different periods of time and interacted with the cratonic keel on a moving plate. The numerical models and a comparison between the models and geological constraints will be presented.

  5. Constraining the source of mantle plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cagney, N.; Crameri, F.; Newsome, W. H.; Lithgow-Bertelloni, C.; Cotel, A.; Hart, S. R.; Whitehead, J. A.

    2016-02-01

    In order to link the geochemical signature of hot spot basalts to Earth's deep interior, it is first necessary to understand how plumes sample different regions of the mantle. Here, we investigate the relative amounts of deep and shallow mantle material that are entrained by an ascending plume and constrain its source region. The plumes are generated in a viscous syrup using an isolated heater for a range of Rayleigh numbers. The velocity fields are measured using stereoscopic Particle-Image Velocimetry, and the concept of the 'vortex ring bubble' is used to provide an objective definition of the plume geometry. Using this plume geometry, the plume composition can be analysed in terms of the proportion of material that has been entrained from different depths. We show that the plume composition can be well described using a simple empirical relationship, which depends only on a single parameter, the sampling coefficient, sc. High-sc plumes are composed of material which originated from very deep in the fluid domain, while low-sc plumes contain material entrained from a range of depths. The analysis is also used to show that the geometry of the plume can be described using a similarity solution, in agreement with previous studies. Finally, numerical simulations are used to vary both the Rayleigh number and viscosity contrast independently. The simulations allow us to predict the value of the sampling coefficient for mantle plumes; we find that as a plume reaches the lithosphere, 90% of its composition has been derived from the lowermost 260-750 km in the mantle, and negligible amounts are derived from the shallow half of the lower mantle. This result implies that isotope geochemistry cannot provide direct information about this unsampled region, and that the various known geochemical reservoirs must lie in the deepest few hundred kilometres of the mantle.

  6. Anatomy of a Pathological Mantle Plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harpp, K. S.; Geist, D. J.

    2008-12-01

    Our understanding of the Galapagos mantle plume has evolved over the past 15 years, largely as a result of the integration of geochemical and geophysical studies carried out at increasingly detailed spatial scales. Pioneering isotopic studies by Bill White and his colleagues revealed that enriched material was concentrated on the north, west, and south edges of the archipelago in an east-facing horseshoe. This, coupled with consideration of novel fluid dynamic models, resulted in the bent plume hypothesis (White et al., 1993), in which the relatively weak Galapagos plume is tilted in the direction of plate motion by shear forces generated by the movement of the overlying plate. The drag of the plate was thought to cause progressive entrainment of the upper mantle as the plume spread to the east. Subsequent sampling of seamounts on the Galapagos platform complicated our understanding of the plume, and indicated that the northern Galapagos Islands and seamounts could not be incorporated into the bent plume model. Instead, this area is best explained as a distinct province from the main archipelago, whose origin primarily results from the flow of material from the plume toward the Galapagos Spreading Center. Furthermore, the northern margin of the plume is defined by Wolf volcano, where the lithospheric cap controls melting conditions. The southern edge of the plume is characterized by rejuvenescent volcanism at Floreana Island. This activity has been attributed to metasomatized rocks in the plume that are only detectable where melting is limited to shallow mantle depths at the cooler margin of the plume. Xenoliths from Floreana indicate that it formerly had the isotopic signature of the western Galapagos. Several lines of evidence point to the plume center being located near Fernandina volcano, including high 3He/4He signals observed in both subaerial and submarine lavas from Fernandina and seismic tomographic studies. These seismic studies delineate the ascending

  7. The Axum-Adwa basalt-trachyte complex: a late magmatic activity at the periphery of the Afar plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Natali, C.; Beccaluva, L.; Bianchini, G.; Siena, F.

    2013-08-01

    CFB event, characterized by comparatively lower volume of more alkaline products, conforms to the progressive vanishing of the Afar plume thermal effects and the parallel decrease of the partial melting degrees of the related mantle sources. This evolution is also concomitant with the variation of the tectono-magmatic regime from regional lithospheric extension (CFB eruption) to localized rifting processes that favoured magmatic differentiation.

  8. Influence of the Afar plume on the deep structure of Aden and Red Sea margins - Insight from teleseismic tomography in western Yemen

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Korostelev, Félicie; Basuyau, Clémence; Leroy, Sylvie; Ahmed, Abdulhakim; Keir, Derek; Stuart, Graham; Rolandone, Frédérique; Ganad, Ismail Al; Khanbari, Khaled

    2013-04-01

    Continental rupture processes under mantle plume influence are still poorly known although extensively studied. The Afar plume has been largely investigated in Ethiopia to study early stages of continental break-up. Here we imaged the lithospheric structure of western continental Yemen to evaluate the role of the Afar plume on the evolution of the continental margin and its extent towards the East. A part of the YOCMAL project (YOung Conjugate MArgins Laboratory) permitted the deployment of twenty-three broadband stations in Yemen (from 2009 to 2010). Using a classical teleseismic tomography (Aki et al., 1974) on these stations together with a permanent GFZ station, we image the relative velocity variations of P-waves in the crust and lithosphere down to 300 km depth, with a maximum lateral resolution of about ~20 km. The model thus obtained shows (1) a dramatic and localized thinning of the crust in the vicinity of the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden (2) the presence of magmatic underplating related to seaward dipping reflectors under those two volcanic margins (3) two granitic syn-rift intrusions on the border of the great escarpment (4) a low velocity anomaly in which with evidence of partial melting, just below thick Oligocene trapps series and other volcanic events (from 15 Ma to present). This low velocity anomaly could correspond to an abnormally hot mantle and could be responsible for dynamic topography and recent magmatism in western Yemen. (5) Finally, we infer the presence of hot material under the Southwestern corner of Yemen that could be related to Miocene volcanism in Jabal an Nar.

  9. Lunar maria - result of mantle plume activity?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharkov, E.

    It is generally accepted that lunar maria are the result of catastrophic impact events. However, comparative studying of the Earth's and the Moon's tectonomagmatic evolution could evidence about another way of these specific structures origin. Such studies showed that the both planetary bodies evolved on the close scenario: their geological development began after solidification of global magmatic oceans which led to appearance of their primordial crusts: granitic on the Earth and anorthositic - on the Moon. The further evolution of the both bodies occurred in two stages. For their first stages, lasted ˜2.5 mlrd. years on the Earth and ˜1.5 mlrd. years on the Moon, were typical melts, generated in depleted mantle (Bogatikov et al., 2000). However, at the boundary 2.2-2.0 Ga ago on the Earth and 3.9-3.8 Ga on the Moon another type of magmas appeared: geochemical enriched Fe-Ti picrites and basalts, characteristic for the terrestrial Phanerozoic plume-related situations, and basaltic mare magmatism with high-Ti varieties on the Moon. It suggests that evolution of the Earth's magmatism was linked with ascending of mantle plumes (superplumes) of two generation: (1) generated in the mantle, depleted during solidification of magmatic ocean and Archean magmatic activity, and (2) generated at the core-mantle boundary (CMB). The latter were enriched in the mantle fluid components (Fe, Ti, alkalies, etc); this lighter material could ascend to shallower depths, leading to change of tectonic processes, in particular, to appearance of plate tectonics as the major type of tectonomagmatic activity till now (Bogatikov et al., 2000). By analogy to the Earth, magmatism of the Moon was also linked with ascending of mantle plumes: (1) generated in the depleted mantle (magnesian suite) and (2) generated at the lunar CMB with liquid at that time metallic core (mare basalt and picrites with high-Ti varieties). Like on the Earth, these plumes were lighter than the older plumes, and

  10. Apollinaris Patera: An Early Martian Mantle Plume?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kiefer, W. S.

    2015-12-01

    Apollinaris Patera is one of the largest volcanos on Mars outside of the Tharsis volcanic province (summit relief 5.4 km, volume 7.3x1013 m3). The mapped crater densities on Apollinaris indicate that volcanic activity ended 3.5 to 3.8 billion years ago. Apollinaris is located on the northern (lowland) side of the martian hemispheric dichotomy. Because it is an isolated, relatively point-like source of volcanism, it is plausibly interpreted as an early example of a martian mantle plume. Plume structure and conditions in the mantle can be constrained using finite element mantle convection simulations combined with a variety of petrological, geophysical, and geologic observations. (1) Basalts studied by the MER Spirit rover in nearby Gusev crater are similar in age and possibly physically connected to Apollinaris Patera. Petrologic modeling of the Gusev crater basalt compositions indicates that the thermal lithosphere was about 100 km thick with a mantle potential temperature of 1480-1530 °C. This requires a mantle thermal Rayleigh number of about 2x108 at the time of volcanism, based on the volume-averaged mantle viscosity. (2) Pyroclastic deposits at Apollinaris indicate that at least a portion of the volcanism occurred in the presence of a high concentration of water or other volatiles. This lowers the solidus temperature and increases the magma production rate but has only a limited effect on the minimum depth of melting. (3) There is a localized magnetic anomaly beneath Apollinaris that indicates that the martian core dynamo persisted until at least the earliest stage of Apollinaris volcanism, which in turn sets a lower bound on the core heat flux of 5-10 mW m-2. Preservation of the magnetic field may be the result of formation of magnetic minerals such as magnetite due to volcanically-driven hydrothermal alteration of crustal rocks beneath Apollinaris.

  11. Low-buoyancy thermochemical plumes resolve controversy of classical mantle plume concept.

    PubMed

    Dannberg, Juliane; Sobolev, Stephan V

    2015-04-24

    The Earth's biggest magmatic events are believed to originate from massive melting when hot mantle plumes rising from the lowermost mantle reach the base of the lithosphere. Classical models predict large plume heads that cause kilometre-scale surface uplift, and narrow (100 km radius) plume tails that remain in the mantle after the plume head spreads below the lithosphere. However, in many cases, such uplifts and narrow plume tails are not observed. Here using numerical models, we show that the issue can be resolved if major mantle plumes contain up to 15-20% of recycled oceanic crust in a form of dense eclogite, which drastically decreases their buoyancy and makes it depth dependent. We demonstrate that, despite their low buoyancy, large enough thermochemical plumes can rise through the whole mantle causing only negligible surface uplift. Their tails are bulky (>200 km radius) and remain in the upper mantle for 100 millions of years.

  12. Low-buoyancy thermochemical plumes resolve controversy of classical mantle plume concept

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dannberg, Juliane; Sobolev, Stephan V.

    2015-04-01

    The Earth's biggest magmatic events are believed to originate from massive melting when hot mantle plumes rising from the lowermost mantle reach the base of the lithosphere. Classical models predict large plume heads that cause kilometre-scale surface uplift, and narrow (100 km radius) plume tails that remain in the mantle after the plume head spreads below the lithosphere. However, in many cases, such uplifts and narrow plume tails are not observed. Here using numerical models, we show that the issue can be resolved if major mantle plumes contain up to 15-20% of recycled oceanic crust in a form of dense eclogite, which drastically decreases their buoyancy and makes it depth dependent. We demonstrate that, despite their low buoyancy, large enough thermochemical plumes can rise through the whole mantle causing only negligible surface uplift. Their tails are bulky (>200 km radius) and remain in the upper mantle for 100 millions of years.

  13. Low-buoyancy thermochemical plumes resolve controversy of classical mantle plume concept

    PubMed Central

    Dannberg, Juliane; Sobolev, Stephan V.

    2015-01-01

    The Earth's biggest magmatic events are believed to originate from massive melting when hot mantle plumes rising from the lowermost mantle reach the base of the lithosphere. Classical models predict large plume heads that cause kilometre-scale surface uplift, and narrow (100 km radius) plume tails that remain in the mantle after the plume head spreads below the lithosphere. However, in many cases, such uplifts and narrow plume tails are not observed. Here using numerical models, we show that the issue can be resolved if major mantle plumes contain up to 15–20% of recycled oceanic crust in a form of dense eclogite, which drastically decreases their buoyancy and makes it depth dependent. We demonstrate that, despite their low buoyancy, large enough thermochemical plumes can rise through the whole mantle causing only negligible surface uplift. Their tails are bulky (>200 km radius) and remain in the upper mantle for 100 millions of years. PMID:25907970

  14. Determining resolvability of mantle plumes with synthetic seismic modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maguire, R.; Van Keken, P. E.; Ritsema, J.; Fichtner, A.; Goes, S. D. B.

    2014-12-01

    Hotspot volcanism in locations such as Hawaii and Iceland is commonly thought to be associated with plumes rising from the deep mantle. In theory these dynamic upwellings should be visible in seismic data due to their reduced seismic velocity and their effect on mantle transition zone thickness. Numerous studies have attempted to image plumes [1,2,3], but their deep mantle origin remains unclear. In addition, a debate continues as to whether lower mantle plumes are visible in the form of body wave travel time delays, or whether such delays will be erased due to wavefront healing. Here we combine geodynamic modeling of mantle plumes with synthetic seismic waveform modeling in order to quantitatively determine under what conditions mantle plumes should be seismically visible. We model compressible plumes with phase changes at 410 km and 670 km, and a viscosity reduction in the upper mantle. These plumes thin from greater than 600 km in diameter in the lower mantle, to 200 - 400 km in the upper mantle. Plume excess potential temperature is 375 K, which maps to seismic velocity reductions of 4 - 12 % in the upper mantle, and 2 - 4 % in the lower mantle. Previous work that was limited to an axisymmetric spherical geometry suggested that these plumes would not be visible in the lower mantle [4]. Here we extend this approach to full 3D spherical wave propagation modeling. Initial results using a simplified cylindrical plume conduit suggest that mantle plumes with a diameter of 1000 km or greater will retain a deep mantle seismic signature. References[1] Wolfe, Cecily J., et al. "Seismic structure of the Iceland mantle plume." Nature 385.6613 (1997): 245-247. [2] Montelli, Raffaella, et al. "Finite-frequency tomography reveals a variety of plumes in the mantle." Science 303.5656 (2004): 338-343. [3] Schmandt, Brandon, et al. "Hot mantle upwelling across the 660 beneath Yellowstone." Earth and Planetary Science Letters 331 (2012): 224-236. [4] Hwang, Yong Keun, et al

  15. Influences on the positioning of mantle plumes following supercontinent formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heron, Philip J.; Lowman, Julian P.; Stein, Claudia

    2015-05-01

    Several mantle convection studies analyzing the effects of supercontinent formation and dispersal show that the genesis of subcontinental plumes results from the formation of subduction zones at the edges of the supercontinent rather than from the effect of continental thermal insulation or thermochemical piles. However, the influence of subduction zone location on the position of subcontinental plumes has received little attention. This study analyzes 2-D and 3-D numerical models of supercontinent formation (in an isochemical mantle) to assess the role of subduction and mantle viscosity contrast in the generation of subcontinental mantle plumes. We find that once a critical supercontinent width is reached, plumes do not form under the center of a supercontinent. In studies featuring a low viscosity lower mantle, the surface positions of the initial plumes (arriving within 90 Myr of supercontinent assembly) become locked beneath the continent at a distance 2000-3000 km from the continental margin. However, the broad downwellings in simulations that feature a high-viscosity lower mantle trigger plumes at a greater distance from the continental margin subduction. For all mantle viscosity profiles, subcontinental plumes show dependence on the location of supercontinent margin subduction. As theories differ on the role of core-mantle boundary chemical piles in plume formation, it is significant that our isochemical models show that the formation of subduction zones at the margins of a supercontinent has a profound effect on subcontinental mantle dynamics. Our results may help to explain what determined the eruption sites of past (and future) large igneous provinces.

  16. Interaction of a mantle plume and a segmented mid-ocean ridge: Results from numerical modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Georgen, Jennifer E.

    2014-04-01

    Previous investigations have proposed that changes in lithospheric thickness across a transform fault, due to the juxtaposition of seafloor of different ages, can impede lateral dispersion of an on-ridge mantle plume. The application of this “transform damming” mechanism has been considered for several plume-ridge systems, including the Reunion hotspot and the Central Indian Ridge, the Amsterdam-St. Paul hotspot and the Southeast Indian Ridge, the Cobb hotspot and the Juan de Fuca Ridge, the Iceland hotspot and the Kolbeinsey Ridge, the Afar plume and the ridges of the Gulf of Aden, and the Marion/Crozet hotspot and the Southwest Indian Ridge. This study explores the geodynamics of the transform damming mechanism using a three-dimensional finite element numerical model. The model solves the coupled steady-state equations for conservation of mass, momentum, and energy, including thermal buoyancy and viscosity that is dependent on pressure and temperature. The plume is introduced as a circular thermal anomaly on the bottom boundary of the numerical domain. The center of the plume conduit is located directly beneath a spreading segment, at a distance of 200 km (measured in the along-axis direction) from a transform offset with length 100 km. Half-spreading rate is 0.5 cm/yr. In a series of numerical experiments, the buoyancy flux of the modeled plume is progressively increased to investigate the effects on the temperature and velocity structure of the upper mantle in the vicinity of the transform. Unlike earlier studies, which suggest that a transform always acts to decrease the along-axis extent of plume signature, these models imply that the effect of a transform on plume dispersion may be complex. Under certain ranges of plume flux modeled in this study, the region of the upper mantle undergoing along-axis flow directed away from the plume could be enhanced by the three-dimensional velocity and temperature structure associated with ridge

  17. Mantle plumes in the vicinity of subduction zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mériaux, C. A.; Mériaux, A.-S.; Schellart, W. P.; Duarte, J. C.; Duarte, S. S.; Chen, Z.

    2016-11-01

    We present three-dimensional deep-mantle laboratory models of a compositional plume within the vicinity of a buoyancy-driven subducting plate with a fixed trailing edge. We modelled front plumes (in the mantle wedge), rear plumes (beneath the subducting plate) and side plumes with slab/plume systems of buoyancy flux ratio spanning a range from 2 to 100 that overlaps the ratios in nature of 0.2-100. This study shows that 1) rising side and front plumes can be dragged over thousands of kilometres into the mantle wedge, 2) flattening of rear plumes in the trench-normal direction can be initiated 700 km away from the trench, and a plume material layer of lesser density and viscosity can ultimately almost entirely underlay a retreating slab after slab/plume impact, 3) while side and rear plumes are not tilted until they reach ∼600 km depth, front plumes can be tilted at increasing depths as their plume buoyancy is lessened, and rise at a slower rate when subjected to a slab-induced downwelling, 4) rear plumes whose buoyancy flux is close to that of a slab, can retard subduction until the slab is 600 km long, and 5) slab-plume interaction can lead to a diversity of spatial plume material distributions into the mantle wedge. We discuss natural slab/plume systems of the Cascadia/Bowie-Cobb, and Nazca/San Felix-Juan Fernandez systems on the basis of our experiments and each geodynamic context and assess the influence of slab downwelling at depths for the starting plumes of Java, Coral Sea and East Solomon. Overall, this study shows how slab/plume interactions can result in a variety of geological, geophysical and geochemical signatures.

  18. Evidence for Little Shallow Entrainment in Starting Mantle Plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lohmann, F. C.; Phipps Morgan, J.; Hort, M.

    2005-12-01

    Basalts from intraplate or hotspot ocean islands show distinct geochemical signatures. Their diversity in composition is generally believed to result from the upwelling plume entraining shallow mantle material during ascent, while potentially also entraining other deep regions of the mantle. Here we present results from analogue laboratory experiments and numerical modelling that there is evidence for little shallow entrainment into ascending mantle plumes, i.e. most of the plume signature is inherited from the source. We conducted laboratory experiments using glucose syrup contaminated with glass beads to visualize fluid flow and origin. The plume is initiated by heating from below or by injecting hot, uncontaminated syrup. Particle movement is captured by a CCD camera. In our numerical experiments we solve the Stokes equations for a viscous fluid at infinite Prandtl number with passive tracer particles being used to track fluid flow and entrainment rates, simulating laboratory as well as mantle conditions. In both analogue experiments and numerical models we observe the classical plume structure being embedded in a `sheath' of material from the plume source region that retains little of the original temperature anomaly of the plume source. Yet, this sheath ascends in the `slipstream' of the plume at speeds close to the ascent speed of the plume head, and effectively prevents the entrainment of surrounding material into the plume head or plume tail. We find that the source region is most effectively sampled by an ascending plume and that compositional variations in the source region are preserved during plume ascent. The plume center and plume sheath combined are composed of up to 85% source material. However, there is also evidence of significant entrainment of up to 30% of surrounding material into the outer layers of the plume sheath. Entrainment rates are found to be influenced by mantle composition and structure, with the radial viscosity profile of the

  19. The composition of mantle plumes and the deep Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hastie, Alan R.; Fitton, J. Godfrey; Kerr, Andrew C.; McDonald, Iain; Schwindrofska, Antje; Hoernle, Kaj

    2016-06-01

    Determining the composition and geochemical diversity of Earth's deep mantle and subsequent ascending mantle plumes is vital so that we can better understand how the Earth's primitive mantle reservoirs initially formed and how they have evolved over the last 4.6 billion years. Further data on the composition of mantle plumes, which generate voluminous eruptions on the planet's surface, are also essential to fully understand the evolution of the Earth's hydrosphere and atmosphere with links to surface environmental changes that may have led to mass extinction events. Here we present new major and trace element and Sr-Nd-Pb-Hf isotope data on basalts from Curacao, part of the Caribbean large igneous province. From these and literature data, we calculate combined major and trace element compositions for the mantle plumes that generated the Caribbean and Ontong Java large igneous provinces and use mass balance to determine the composition of the Earth's lower mantle. Incompatible element and isotope results indicate that mantle plumes have broadly distinctive depleted and enriched compositions that, in addition to the numerous mantle reservoirs already proposed in the literature, represent large planetary-scale geochemical heterogeneity in the Earth's deep mantle that are similar to non-chondritic Bulk Silicate Earth compositions.

  20. The 2016 Case for Mantle Plumes and a Plume-Fed Asthenosphere (Augustus Love Medal Lecture)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morgan, Jason P.

    2016-04-01

    The process of science always returns to weighing evidence and arguments for and against a given hypothesis. As hypotheses can only be falsified, never universally proved, doubt and skepticism remain essential elements of the scientific method. In the past decade, even the hypothesis that mantle plumes exist as upwelling currents in the convecting mantle has been subject to intense scrutiny; from geochemists and geochronologists concerned that idealized plume models could not fit many details of their observations, and from seismologists concerned that mantle plumes can sometimes not be 'seen' in their increasingly high-resolution tomographic images of the mantle. In the place of mantle plumes, various locally specific and largely non-predictive hypotheses have been proposed to explain the origins of non-plate boundary volcanism at Hawaii, Samoa, etc. In my opinion, this debate has now passed from what was initially an extremely useful restorative from simply 'believing' in the idealized conventional mantle plume/hotspot scenario to becoming an active impediment to our community's ability to better understand the dynamics of the solid Earth. Having no working hypothesis at all is usually worse for making progress than having an imperfect and incomplete but partially correct one. There continues to be strong arguments and strong emerging evidence for deep mantle plumes. Furthermore, deep thermal plumes should exist in a mantle that is heated at its base, and the existence of Earth's (convective) geodynamo clearly indicates that heat flows from the core to heat the mantle's base. Here I review recent seismic evidence by French, Romanowicz, and coworkers that I feel lends strong new observational support for the existence of deep mantle plumes. I also review recent evidence consistent with the idea that secular core cooling replenishes half the mantle's heat loss through its top surface, e.g. that the present-day mantle is strongly bottom heated. Causes for

  1. Mantle plume interaction with an endothermic phase change

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schubert, Gerald; Anderson, Charles; Goldman, Peggy

    1995-01-01

    High spatial resolution numerical simulations of mantle plumes impinging from below on the endothermic phase change at 660-km depth are used to investigate the effects of latent heat release on the plume-phase change interaction. Both axisymmetric and planar upflows are considered, and the strong temperature dependence of mantle viscosity is taken into account. For plume strengths considered, a Clapeyron slope of -4 MPa/K prevents plume penetration of the phase change. Plumes readily penetrate the phase change for a Clapeyron slope of -2 MPa/K and arrive in the upper mantle considerably hotter than if they had not traversed the phase change. For the same amount of thermal drive, i.e., the same excess basal temperature, axisymmetric plumes are hotter upon reaching the upper mantle than are planar upwellings. Heating of plumes by their passage through the spinel-perovskite endothermic phase change can have important consequences for the ability of the plume to thermally thin the lithosphere and cause melting and volcanism.

  2. Mantle Plume Dynamics Constrained by Seismic Tomography and Geodynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Glisovic, P.; Forte, A. M.

    2012-12-01

    We construct a time-dependent, compressible mantle convection model in three-dimensional spherical geometry that is consistent with tomography-based instantaneous flow dynamics, using an updated and revised pseudo-spectral numerical method [Glisovic et al., Geophys. J. Int. 2012]. We explored the impact of two end-member surface boundary conditions, for a rigid and plate-like surface, along with geodynamically-inferred radial viscosity profiles. In each case we find that deep-mantle hot upwellings are durable and stable features in the mantle-wide convective circulation. These deeply-rooted mantle plumes show remarkable longevity over very long geological time spans (several hundred million years), mainly owing to the high viscosity in the lower mantle. Our very-long time convection simulations suggest that the deep-mantle plumes beneath the following hotspots: Pitcairn, Easter, Galapagos, Crozet, Kerguelen, Caroline and Cape Verde, are most reliably resolved in the present-day tomographic images.

  3. Transient mantle plumes: hot heads and cold stems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Touitou, F.; Davaille, A.; Brandeis, G.; Kumagai, I.; Vatteville, J.

    2012-04-01

    Recent petrological studies show evidences for secular cooling in mantle plumes: the source temperature of oceanic plateaus could be 100oC hotter than the source temperature of volcanic island chains. In terms of mantle plumes, it would mean that the temperature of the plume head is hotter than that of the plume stem. This is at odd with a model where a plume head would entrain so much ambient mantle on its journey towards the Earth's surface that it would end up being considerably colder than its narrow stem. So we revisited the problem using laboratory experiments and new visualization techniques to measure in situ simultaneously the temperature, velocity and composition fields. At time t=0, a hot instability is created by heating a patch of a given radius at constant power or constant temperature. The fluids are sugar syrups , with a strongly temperature-dependent viscosity. Rayleigh numbers were varied from 104 to 108, and viscosity ratio between 1.8 and 2000. After a stage where heat transport is by conduction only, the hot fluid gathers in a sphere and begins to rise, followed by a stem anchored on the hot patch. In all cases, temperatures in the head start with higher values than in the subsequent stem. However, the head also cools faster than the stem as they rise, so that they will eventually have the same temperature if the mantle is deep enough. However, our scaling laws predict that Earth's mantle plumes can indeed have hot heads and colder stems. Presence of chemically denser material on the bottom of the mantle would only increase this trend. Moreover, all the material sampled by partial melting in the plume head or stem would be coming from the heated area around the deep source, and very little entrainment from the ambient mantle is predicted.

  4. Mantle Plumes and Geologically Recent Volcanism on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kiefer, W. S.

    2013-12-01

    Despite its small size, Mars has remained volcanically active until the geologically recent past. Crater retention ages on the volcanos Arsia Mon, Olympus Mons, and Pavonis Mons indicate significant volcanic activity in the last 100-200 million years. The radiometric ages of many shergottites, a type of igneous martian meteorite, indicate igneous activity at about 180 million years ago. These ages correspond to the most recent 2-4% of the age of the Solar System. The most likely explanation for this young martian volcanism is adiabatic decompression melting in upwelling mantle plumes. Multiple plumes may be active at any time, with each of the major volcanos in the Tharsis region being formed by a separate plume. Like at least some terrestrial mantle plumes, mantle plumes on Mars likely form via an instability of the thermal boundary layer at the base of the mantle. Because Mars operates in the stagnant lid convection regime, the temperature difference between mantle and core is lower than on Earth. This reduces the temperature contrast between mantle and core, resulting in mantle plumes on Mars that are about 100 K hotter than the average mantle. The chemical composition of the martian meteorites indicates that the martian mantle is enriched in both iron and sodium relative to Earth's mantle. This lowers the dry solidus on early Mars by 30-40 K relative to Earth. Migration of sodium to the crust over time decreases this difference in solidus temperature to about 15 K at present, but that is sufficient to increase the current plume magma production rate by a factor of about 2. Hydrous phases in the martian meteorites indicate the presence of a few hundred ppm water in the mantle source region, roughly the same as Earth. Finite element simulations of martian plumes using temperature-dependent viscosity and realistic Rayleigh numbers can reproduce the geologically recent magma production rate that is inferred from geologic mapping and the melt fraction inferred from

  5. Superplumes and Plume-Clustering: Dynamical Influences from Mantle Rheology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hansen, U.; Yuen, D. A.

    2003-04-01

    Seismological studies indicate the existence of large upwelling regions of complex structures in the lower mantle. A mantle flow model with only a few strong upwellings is an alternative to conventional convection models with respect not only to pattern of the flow but also to heat transport and mixing properties. By two- and three-dimensional numerical models we demonstrate that a significant increase of the viscosity with pressure in the lower mantle leads to a focusing of buoyancy into strong upwellings from the core-mantle boundary. Taking into account a realistically decreasing coefficient of thermal expansion further facilitates the generation of superplumes. Besides pressure, the viscosity of the mantle material will strongly depend on temperature. Combining the effects of temperature and pressure-dependent viscosity, generates a significant viscosity maximum in the lower mantle. Pressure dependence let the viscosity increase from the upper to the lower mantle, temperature dependence, however, compensates this effect at greater depth. The spatiotemporal evolution of plumes is likewise influenced: While a purely pressure-dependent viscosity creates single plumes, additional temperature dependence leads to plume-clusters, characterized by instabilities at the core-mantle boundary, which are centered around a strong upwelling flow.

  6. Anatomy of mantle plumes: hot heads and cold stems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davaille, A. B.; Kumagai, I.; Vatteville, J.; Touitou, F.; Brandeis, G.

    2012-12-01

    Recent petrological studies show evidences for secular cooling in mantle plumes: the source temperature of oceanic plateaus could be 100°C hotter than the source temperature of volcanic island chains (Herzberg and Gazel, Nature, 2009). In terms of mantle plumes, it would mean that the temperature of the plume head is hotter than that of the plume stem. This is at odd with a model where a plume head would entrain so much ambient mantle on its journey towards the Earth's surface that it would end up being considerably colder than its narrow stem. So we revisited the problem using laboratory experiments and new visualization techniques to measure in situ simultaneously the temperature, velocity and composition fields. At time t=0, a hot instability is created by heating a patch of a given radius at constant power or constant temperature. The fluids are mixtures of sugar syrups , with a strongly temperature-dependent viscosity, and salt. Rayleigh numbers were varied from 104 to 108, viscosity ratios between 1.8 and 4000, and buoyancy ratios between 0 and 2. After a stage where heat transport is by conduction only, the hot fluid gathers in a sphere and begins to rise, followed by a stem anchored on the hot patch. In all cases, temperatures in the head start with higher values than in the subsequent stem. This is also the case for the thermal instabilities rising from a infinite plate heated uniformly. However, the head also cools faster than the stem as they rise, so that they will eventually have the same temperature if the mantle is deep enough. Moreover, all the material sampled by partial melting in the plume head or stem would be coming from the heated area around the deep source, and very little entrainment from the ambient mantle is predicted. The difference in temperature between head and stem strongly depends on the mantle depth, the viscosity ratio and the buoyancy ratio. Our scaling laws predict that Earth's mantle plumes can indeed have hot heads and colder

  7. A migratory mantle plume on Venus: Implications for Earth?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chapman, M.G.; Kirk, R.L.

    1996-01-01

    A spatially fixed or at least internally rigid hotspot reference frame has been assumed for determining relative plate motions on Earth. Recent 1:5,000,000 scale mapping of Venus, a planet without terrestrial-style plate tectonics and ocean cover, reveals a systematic age and dimensional progression of corona-like arachnoids occurring in an uncinate chain. The nonrandom associations between arachnoids indicate they likely formed from a deep-seated mantle plume in a manner similar to terrestrial hotspot features. However, absence of expected convergent "plate" margin deformation suggests that the arachnoids are the surface expression of a migratory mantle plume beneath a stationary surface. If mantle plumes are not stationary on Venus, what if any are the implications for Earth?

  8. Seismic evidence for a tilted mantle plume and north-south mantle flow beneath Iceland

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Shen, Y.; Solomon, S.C.; Bjarnason, I. Th; Nolet, G.; Morgan, W.J.; Allen, R.M.; Vogfjord, K.; Jakobsdottir, S.; Stefansson, R.; Julian, B.R.; Foulger, G.R.

    2002-01-01

    Shear waves converted from compressional waves at mantle discontinuities near 410- and 660-km depth recorded by two broadband seismic experiments in Iceland reveal that the center of an area of anomalously thin mantle transition zone lies at least 100 km south of the upper-mantle low-velocity anomaly imaged tomographically beneath the hotspot. This offset is evidence for a tilted plume conduit in the upper mantle, the result of either northward flow of the Icelandic asthenosphere or southward flow of the upper part of the lower mantle in a no-net-rotation reference frame. ?? 2002 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Asymmetric three-dimensional topography over mantle plumes.

    PubMed

    Burov, Evgueni; Gerya, Taras

    2014-09-01

    The role of mantle-lithosphere interactions in shaping surface topography has long been debated. In general, it is supposed that mantle plumes and vertical mantle flows result in axisymmetric, long-wavelength topography, which strongly differs from the generally asymmetric short-wavelength topography created by intraplate tectonic forces. However, identification of mantle-induced topography is difficult, especially in the continents. It can be argued therefore that complex brittle-ductile rheology and stratification of the continental lithosphere result in short-wavelength modulation and localization of deformation induced by mantle flow. This deformation should also be affected by far-field stresses and, hence, interplay with the 'tectonic' topography (for example, in the 'active/passive' rifting scenario). Testing these ideas requires fully coupled three-dimensional numerical modelling of mantle-lithosphere interactions, which so far has not been possible owing to the conceptual and technical limitations of earlier approaches. Here we present new, ultra-high-resolution, three-dimensional numerical experiments on topography over mantle plumes, incorporating a weakly pre-stressed (ultra-slow spreading), rheologically realistic lithosphere. The results show complex surface evolution, which is very different from the smooth, radially symmetric patterns usually assumed as the canonical surface signature of mantle upwellings. In particular, the topography exhibits strongly asymmetric, small-scale, three-dimensional features, which include narrow and wide rifts, flexural flank uplifts and fault structures. This suggests a dominant role for continental rheological structure and intra-plate stresses in controlling dynamic topography, mantle-lithosphere interactions, and continental break-up processes above mantle plumes. PMID:25186903

  10. Asymmetric three-dimensional topography over mantle plumes.

    PubMed

    Burov, Evgueni; Gerya, Taras

    2014-09-01

    The role of mantle-lithosphere interactions in shaping surface topography has long been debated. In general, it is supposed that mantle plumes and vertical mantle flows result in axisymmetric, long-wavelength topography, which strongly differs from the generally asymmetric short-wavelength topography created by intraplate tectonic forces. However, identification of mantle-induced topography is difficult, especially in the continents. It can be argued therefore that complex brittle-ductile rheology and stratification of the continental lithosphere result in short-wavelength modulation and localization of deformation induced by mantle flow. This deformation should also be affected by far-field stresses and, hence, interplay with the 'tectonic' topography (for example, in the 'active/passive' rifting scenario). Testing these ideas requires fully coupled three-dimensional numerical modelling of mantle-lithosphere interactions, which so far has not been possible owing to the conceptual and technical limitations of earlier approaches. Here we present new, ultra-high-resolution, three-dimensional numerical experiments on topography over mantle plumes, incorporating a weakly pre-stressed (ultra-slow spreading), rheologically realistic lithosphere. The results show complex surface evolution, which is very different from the smooth, radially symmetric patterns usually assumed as the canonical surface signature of mantle upwellings. In particular, the topography exhibits strongly asymmetric, small-scale, three-dimensional features, which include narrow and wide rifts, flexural flank uplifts and fault structures. This suggests a dominant role for continental rheological structure and intra-plate stresses in controlling dynamic topography, mantle-lithosphere interactions, and continental break-up processes above mantle plumes.

  11. Tomographic resolution of plume anomalies in the lowermost mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xue, Jing; Zhou, Ying; Chen, Yongshun

    2015-05-01

    Mantle plumes as well as `superplumes' have been imaged in the lowermost mantle in tomographic studies. To investigate seismic resolution of deep mantle plume anomalies, we use a spectral element method (SEM) to simulate global seismic wave propagation in 3-D wave speed models and measure frequency-dependent P-, S-, Pdiff- and Sdiff-wave traveltime anomalies caused by plume structures in the lowermost mantle. We compare SEM time delay measurements with calculations based on ray theory and show that an anticorrelation between bulk sound wave speed and S-wave speed could be produced as an artifact. This is caused by different wavefront healing effects between P and S waves in thermal plume models. The differences in wave diffraction between the two types of waves depend on epicentral distance and wave frequency. We show that bulk-sound speed structure can not be recovered in ray-theoretical tomographic inversions when the lateral extent of the anomaly is smaller than the size of the Fresnel zone in the lowermost mantle. In addition, an anticorrelation between bulk sound speed and S-wave speed can be produced in ray-theoretical tomography when the size of the anomaly is less than ˜2000 km; and, the artifacts become more pronounced as the lateral extent of the plume decreases. This indicates a chemical origin of `superplumes' in the lowermost mantle may not be necessary to explain observed seismic traveltimes of core-mantle diffracted waves. The same set of Pdiff and Sdiff measurements are inverted using finite-frequency tomography based on Born sensitivity kernels. We show that wavefront healing effects can be accounted for in finite-frequency tomography to recover the true velocity model.

  12. Mantle plume capture, anchoring and outflow during ridge interaction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gibson, S. A.; Richards, M. A.; Geist, D.

    2015-12-01

    Geochemical and geophysical studies have shown that >40% of the world's mantle plumes are currently interacting with the global ridge system and such interactions may continue for up to 180 Myr[1]. At sites of plume-ridge interaction up to 1400 km of the spreading centre is influenced by dispersed plume material but there are few constraints on how and where the ridge-ward transfer of deep-sourced material occurs, and also how it is sustained over long time intervals. Galápagos is an archetypal example of an off-axis plume and sheds important light on these mechanisms. The Galápagos plume stem is located ~200 km south of the spreading axis and its head influences 1000 km of the ridge. Nevertheless, the site of enriched basalts, greatest crustal thickness and elevated topography on the ridge, together with active volcanism in the archipelago, correlate with a narrow zone (~150 km) of low-velocity, high-temperature mantle that connects the plume stem and ridge at depths of ~100 km[2]. The enriched ridge basalts contain a greater amount of partially-dehydrated, recycled oceanic crust than basalts elsewhere on the spreading axis, or indeed basalts erupted in the region between the plume stem and ridge. The presence of these relatively volatile-rich ridge basalts requires flow of plume material below the peridotite solidus (i.e.>80 km). We propose a 2-stage model for the development and sustainment of a confined zone of deep ridge-ward plume flow. This involves initial on-axis capture and establishment of a sub-ridge channel of plume flow. Subsequent anchoring of the plume stem to a contact point on the ridge during axis migration results in confined ridge-ward flow of plume material via a deep network of melt channels embedded in the normal spreading and advection of the plume head[2]. Importantly, sub-ridge flow is maintained. The physical parameters and styles of mantle flow we have defined for Galápagos are less-well known at other sites of plume

  13. Seismic Migration Imaging of the Lithosphere beneath the Afar Rift System, East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, T. T. Y.; Chen, C. W.; Rychert, C.; Harmon, N.

    2015-12-01

    The Afar Rift system in east Africa is an ideal natural laboratory for investigating the incipient continental rifting, an essential component of plate tectonics. The Afar Rift is situated at the triple junction of three rifts, namely the southern Red Sea Rift, Gulf of Aden Rift and Main Ethiopian Rift (MER). The ongoing continental rifting at Afar transitions to seafloor spreading toward the southern Red Sea. The tectonic evolution of Afar is thought to be influenced by a mantle plume, but how the plume affects and interacts with the Afar lithosphere remains elusive. In this study, we use array seismic data to produce high-resolution migration images of the Afar lithosphere from scattered teleseismic wavefields to shed light on the lithospheric structure and associated tectonic processes. Our preliminary results indicate the presence of lithospheric seismic discontinuities with depth variation across the Afar region. Beneath the MER axis, we detect a pronounced discontinuity at 55 km depth, characterized by downward fast-to-slow velocity contrast, which appears to abruptly deepen to 75 km depth to the northern flank of MER. This discontinuity may be interpreted as the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary. Beneath the Ethiopian Plateau, on the other hand, a dipping structure with velocity increase is identified at 70-90 km depth. Further synthesis of observations from seismic tomography, receiver functions, and seismic anisotropy in the Afar region will offer better understanding of tectonic significance of the lithospheric discontinuities.

  14. Contrasting Mantle Plume Structure: Imaging Hawaii, Iceland and Yellowstone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allen, R. M.; Cheng, C.; Hawley, W. B.

    2014-12-01

    Regional seismic images of hotspot regions are now providing detailed constrains on the upper-mantle structure driving these volcanic sources. Comparing the observed structure in different regions reveals a complexity to mantle plume structure, and their interaction with the over-riding lithosphere, that we are only beginning to understand. Beneath Hawaii, at the top of a near-vertical conduit extending from the lower mantle, we observe two horizontal layers to the present-day plume pancake structure. The first is at ~410 to ~250 km depth, and the second extends from ~150 km to the base of the lithosphere. Beneath Iceland the plume pancake appears to consist of only a single layer from ~200 km to the Moho. Beneath Yellowstone there is also only a single layer pancake, but it fills a layer from 300 km depth up to the Moho. These differences are likely the result of both different source chemistry, and also differences in the over-riding lithospheric structure. In this presentation we will explore the upper mantle structure of all three plumes and the possible explanations for these variations.

  15. Temperature fluctuation of the Iceland mantle plume through time

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spice, Holly E.; Fitton, J. Godfrey; Kirstein, Linda A.

    2016-02-01

    The newly developed Al-in-olivine geothermometer was used to find the olivine-Cr-spinel crystallization temperatures of a suite of picrites spanning the spatial and temporal extent of the North Atlantic Igneous Province (NAIP), which is widely considered to be the result of a deep-seated mantle plume. Our data confirm that start-up plumes are associated with a pulse of anomalously hot mantle over a large spatial area before becoming focused into a narrow upwelling. We find that the thermal anomaly on both sides of the province at Baffin Island/West Greenland and the British Isles at ˜61 Ma across an area ˜2000 km in diameter was uniform, with Al-in-olivine temperatures up to ˜300°C above that of average mid-ocean ridge basalt (MORB) primitive magma. Furthermore, by combining our results with geochemical data and existing geophysical and bathymetric observations, we present compelling evidence for long-term (>107 year) fluctuations in the temperature of the Iceland mantle plume. We show that the plume temperature fell from its initial high value during the start-up phase to a minimum at about 35 Ma, and that the mantle temperature beneath Iceland is currently increasing.

  16. Thermo-chemical plumes rooted in the deep mantle beneath major hotspots: implications for mantle dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Romanowicz, B. A.; French, S.

    2015-12-01

    The existence of mantle plumes as a possible origin for hotspots has been the subject of debate for the last 30 years. Many seismic tomographic studies have hinted at the presence of plume-like features in the lower mantle, but resolution of narrow low velocity features is difficult, and ambiguity remains as to the vertical continuity of these features and how distinct they are from other low velocity blobs. We present robust evidence for significant, vertically continuous, low velocity columns in the lower mantle beneath prominent hotspots located within the footprint of the large low shear velocity provinces (LLSVPs), from a recent global, radially anisotropic whole mantle shear-wave velocity (Vs) model, SEMUCB-WM1 (French and Romanowicz, 2014, 2015). This model was constructed by inversion of a large dataset of long period three-component seismograms down to 32s period. Because it includes surface-wave overtones, S-diffracted waves and multiply reflected waves between the surface and the CMB, this dataset provides considerably better illumination of the whole mantle volume than can be obtained with a standard set of travel times alone. In addition, accurate numerical computation of the forward wavefield using the spectral element method at each iteration of the model construction, allows us to better resolve regions of lower than average Vs. The imaged plumes have several common characteristics: they are rooted in patches of very low Vs near the core mantle boundary, some of which contain documented ULVZs, and extend vertically through the lower mantle up to ~1000 km depth, where some are deflected horizontally, or give rise to somewhat thinner conduits that meander through the upper mantle in the vicinity of the target hotpots. Combined with evidence for slab stagnation at ~1000 km depth, this suggests a change in rheology between 660 and 1000 km depth, very high viscosity throughout the bulk of the lower mantle, and lower viscosity plumes, only mildly

  17. Is there any mantle plume beneath Tristan da Cunha?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schloemer, A.; Geissler, W. H.; Jegen, M. D.; Jokat, W.

    2015-12-01

    Tristan da Cunha is a volcanic island in the South Atlantic located very close to the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. Generally, it is accepted to be the location of a mantle plume, which has been active at least since the breakup of Gondwana at 130 Ma, the time when the Paraná/Etendeka flood basalts were emplaced. Furthermore, it is associated with the formation of the Walvis Ridge and the Rio Grande Rise, and therefore it's one of the key examples of a hot spot track linking a flood basalt province to an active ocean island volcano. However, global tomography models are contradicting about the origin of Tristan da Cunha: Whether it is a deep mantle plume or caused by shallow plate tectonics. To gain a better understanding, we deployed 24 broadband ocean-bottom seismometers, 26 ocean-bottom electromagnetic stations and 2 seismological land stations in January 2012 with the German research vessel Maria S. Merian. We acquired continuous seismological data for one year and recovered the instruments in January 2013.We use cross-correlated travel time residuals of teleseismic earthquakes to perform a finite-frequency tomography to resolve the P wave velocity upper mantle structure beneath the island. Here we show our preliminary results of the 3-D velocity perturbations in the upper mantle: We do not image a plume-like structure directly beneath the island. Instead we observe a low velocity region in the southwest of our array that might be related to a local mantle upwelling (mantle plume). Additionally we show the local seismicity in the Tristan da Cunha region.Chen et al. and Baba et al. will present the first results on the magnetotelluric experiment and Ryberg et al. will present the crustal structure around the Tristan da Cunha hotspot.

  18. Experimental, numerical and analytical models of mantle starting plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coulliette, D. L.; Loper, D. E.

    1995-12-01

    The results of a combined experimental, numerical and analytical investigation of starting thermal plumes are described, to obtain a better perspective on plumes within the Earth's mantle. Thermal plumes were generated experimentally in a tank of corn syrup by means of an electrical heater. Viscosity ratios of 400, 30 000, and 10 8 were generated by varying the temperature of the tank. Plumes for the smaller ratios had the traditional 'balloon-on-astring' shape, but that at the highest ratio had a novel morphology. The plume heads in the first two cases were observed to rise at roughly a constant speed, in contrast to most previous studies which found the plume heads to accelerate. Loss of buoyancy from the plume head owing to heat loss is believed to be responsible for this difference. Starting plumes were simulated numerically using an axisymmetric, finite-element code to solve the Boussinesq equations at finite Prandtl numbers. The constant rise speed observed experimentally was confirmed by the numerical simulation for the viscosity ratios of 400 and 30 000, but numerical instability prevented simulation of the case with a viscosity ratio of 10 8. There was very good agreement between the experimental and numerical rise speeds. An analytical model was developed which reduces to previous models in limiting cases. This parameterization gives better agreement with the experimental and numerical results than does any previous model.

  19. Seismic tomographic evidence for upwelling mantle plume in NE China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Chuansong; Santosh, M.

    2016-05-01

    In this study, we collected teleseismic data recorded by permanent and mobile seismic stations and carried out a teleseismic P-wave tomographic study. The results reveal low velocity perturbation regions at the central part of NE China and specifically in the Songliao basin at different depths, which correspond to the location of a proposed upwelling mantle plume identified by receiver function in a recent study. Receiver function data show a predominantly mafic/ultra-mafic lower crust in the Songliao basin, in contrast to the predominantly felsic lower crust in the other regions. The vestige of upwelling mantle plume is well defined at the mantle transition region. Based on the above results, we suggest that the volcanism in NE China and the Songliao basin formation might be related to Mesozoic mantle plume beneath NE China. We also evaluate alternate models on lower crustal delamination contributing to the volcanism in NE China following collision and amalgamation between the Siberia craton and the North China-Mongolian block during late Jurassic and early Cretaceous.

  20. Petrological evidence for secular cooling in mantle plumes.

    PubMed

    Herzberg, Claude; Gazel, Esteban

    2009-04-01

    Geological mapping and geochronological studies have shown much lower eruption rates for ocean island basalts (OIBs) in comparison with those of lavas from large igneous provinces (LIPs) such as oceanic plateaux and continental flood provinces. However, a quantitative petrological comparison has never been made between mantle source temperature and the extent of melting for OIB and LIP sources. Here we show that the MgO and FeO contents of Galapagos-related lavas and their primary magmas have decreased since the Cretaceous period. From petrological modelling, we infer that these changes reflect a cooling of the Galapagos mantle plume from a potential temperature of 1,560-1,620 degrees C in the Cretaceous to 1,500 degrees C at present. Iceland also exhibits secular cooling, in agreement with previous studies. Our work provides quantitative petrological evidence that, in general, mantle plumes for LIPs with Palaeocene-Permian ages were hotter and melted more extensively than plumes of more modern ocean islands. We interpret this to reflect episodic flow from lower-mantle domains that are lithologically and geochemically heterogeneous.

  1. Petrological evidence for secular cooling in mantle plumes.

    PubMed

    Herzberg, Claude; Gazel, Esteban

    2009-04-01

    Geological mapping and geochronological studies have shown much lower eruption rates for ocean island basalts (OIBs) in comparison with those of lavas from large igneous provinces (LIPs) such as oceanic plateaux and continental flood provinces. However, a quantitative petrological comparison has never been made between mantle source temperature and the extent of melting for OIB and LIP sources. Here we show that the MgO and FeO contents of Galapagos-related lavas and their primary magmas have decreased since the Cretaceous period. From petrological modelling, we infer that these changes reflect a cooling of the Galapagos mantle plume from a potential temperature of 1,560-1,620 degrees C in the Cretaceous to 1,500 degrees C at present. Iceland also exhibits secular cooling, in agreement with previous studies. Our work provides quantitative petrological evidence that, in general, mantle plumes for LIPs with Palaeocene-Permian ages were hotter and melted more extensively than plumes of more modern ocean islands. We interpret this to reflect episodic flow from lower-mantle domains that are lithologically and geochemically heterogeneous. PMID:19340079

  2. Thermally-Driven Mantle Plumes Reconcile Hot-spot Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davies, D.; Davies, J.

    2008-12-01

    Hot-spots are anomalous regions of magmatism that cannot be directly associated with plate tectonic processes (e.g. Morgan, 1972). They are widely regarded as the surface expression of upwelling mantle plumes. Hot-spots exhibit variable life-spans, magmatic productivity and fixity (e.g. Ito and van Keken, 2007). This suggests that a wide-range of upwelling structures coexist within Earth's mantle, a view supported by geochemical and seismic evidence, but, thus far, not reproduced by numerical models. Here, results from a new, global, 3-D spherical, mantle convection model are presented, which better reconcile hot-spot observations, the key modification from previous models being increased convective vigor. Model upwellings show broad-ranging dynamics; some drift slowly, while others are more mobile, displaying variable life-spans, intensities and migration velocities. Such behavior is consistent with hot-spot observations, indicating that the mantle must be simulated at the correct vigor and in the appropriate geometry to reproduce Earth-like dynamics. Thermally-driven mantle plumes can explain the principal features of hot-spot volcanism on Earth.

  3. On the origin of noble gases in mantle plumes.

    PubMed

    Coltice, Nicolas; Ricard, Yanick

    2002-11-15

    The chemical differences between deep- and shallow-mantle sources of oceanic basalts provide evidence that several distinct components coexist within the Earth's mantle. Most of these components have been identified as recycled in origin. However, the noble-gas signature is still a matter of debate and questions the preservation of primitive regions in the convective mantle. We show that a model where the noble-gas signature observed in Hawaii and Iceland comes from a pristine homogeneous deep layer would imply a primitive (3)He content and (3)He/(22)Ne ratio that are very unlikely. On the contrary, mass balances show that the partly degassed peridotite of a marble-cake mantle can be the noble-gas end-member with an apparent 'primitive'-like composition. This component is mixed with recycled oceanic crust in different proportions in the plume sources and in the shallow mantle. A recycling model of the mantle, involving gravitational segregation of the oceanic crust at the bottom of the mantle, potentially satisfies trace-element as well as noble-gas constraints. PMID:12460484

  4. On the origin of noble gases in mantle plumes.

    PubMed

    Coltice, Nicolas; Ricard, Yanick

    2002-11-15

    The chemical differences between deep- and shallow-mantle sources of oceanic basalts provide evidence that several distinct components coexist within the Earth's mantle. Most of these components have been identified as recycled in origin. However, the noble-gas signature is still a matter of debate and questions the preservation of primitive regions in the convective mantle. We show that a model where the noble-gas signature observed in Hawaii and Iceland comes from a pristine homogeneous deep layer would imply a primitive (3)He content and (3)He/(22)Ne ratio that are very unlikely. On the contrary, mass balances show that the partly degassed peridotite of a marble-cake mantle can be the noble-gas end-member with an apparent 'primitive'-like composition. This component is mixed with recycled oceanic crust in different proportions in the plume sources and in the shallow mantle. A recycling model of the mantle, involving gravitational segregation of the oceanic crust at the bottom of the mantle, potentially satisfies trace-element as well as noble-gas constraints.

  5. Chondritic Xenon in the Earth's mantle: new constrains on a mantle plume below central Europe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Caracausi, Antonio; Avice, Guillaume; Bernard, Peter; Furi, Evelin; Marty, Bernard

    2016-04-01

    Due to their inertness, their low abundances, and the presence of several different radiochronometers in their isotope systematics, the noble gases are excellent tracers of mantle dynamics, heterogeneity and differentiation with respect to the atmosphere. Xenon deserves particular attention because its isotope systematic can be related to specific processes during terrestrial accretion (e.g., Marty, 1989; Mukhopadhyay, 2012). The origin of heavy noble gases in the Earth's mantle is still debated, and might not be solar (Holland et al., 2009). Mantle-derived CO2-rich gases are particularly powerful resources for investigating mantle-derived noble gases as large quantities of these elements are available and permit high precision isotope analysis. Here, we report high precision xenon isotopic measurements in gases from a CO2 well in the Eifel volcanic region (Germany), where volcanic activity occurred between 700 ka and 11 ka years ago. Our Xe isotope data (normalized to 130Xe) show deviations at all masses compared to the Xe isotope composition of the modern atmosphere. The improved analytical precision of the present study, and the nature of the sample, constrains the primordial Xe end-member as being "chondritic", and not solar, in the Eifel mantle source. This is consistent with an asteroidal origin for the volatile elements in Earth's mantle and it implies that volatiles in the atmosphere and in the mantle originated from distinct cosmochemical sources. Despite a significant fraction of recycled atmospheric xenon in the mantle, primordial Xe signatures still survive in the mantle. This is also a demonstration of a primordial component in a plume reservoir. Our data also show that the reservoir below the Eifel region contains heavy-radiogenic/fissiogenic xenon isotopes, whose ratios are typical of plume-derived reservoirs. The fissiogenic Pu-Xe contribution is 2.26±0.28 %, the UXe contribution is negligible, the remainder being atmospheric plus primordial. Our

  6. Mantle plume capture, anchoring, and outflow during Galápagos plume-ridge interaction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gibson, S. A.; Geist, D. J.; Richards, M. A.

    2015-05-01

    Compositions of basalts erupted between the main zone of Galápagos plume upwelling and adjacent Galápagos Spreading Center (GSC) provide important constraints on dynamic processes involved in transfer of deep-mantle-sourced material to mid-ocean ridges. We examine recent basalts from central and northeast Galápagos including some that have less radiogenic Sr, Nd, and Pb isotopic compositions than plume-influenced basalts (E-MORB) from the nearby ridge. We show that the location of E-MORB, greatest crustal thickness, and elevated topography on the GSC correlates with a confined zone of low-velocity, high-temperature mantle connecting the plume stem and ridge at depths of ˜100 km. At this site on the ridge, plume-driven upwelling involving deep melting of partially dehydrated, recycled ancient oceanic crust, plus plate-limited shallow melting of anhydrous peridotite, generate E-MORB and larger amounts of melt than elsewhere on the GSC. The first-order control on plume stem to ridge flow is rheological rather than gravitational, and strongly influenced by flow regimes initiated when the plume was on axis (>5 Ma). During subsequent northeast ridge migration material upwelling in the plume stem appears to have remained "anchored" to a contact point on the GSC. This deep, confined NE plume stem-to-ridge flow occurs via a network of melt channels, embedded within the normal spreading and advection of plume material beneath the Nazca plate, and coincides with locations of historic volcanism. Our observations require a more dynamically complex model than proposed by most studies, which rely on radial solid-state outflow of heterogeneous plume material to the ridge.

  7. Surface and Mantle Expression of the Early Permian Tarim Mantle Plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Mimi; Tian, Wei

    2015-04-01

    The mantle process during the Early Permian Tarim plume event is revealed by flood basalt and mantle xenoliths. Permian Tarim flood basalts have typical two pulses' eruption. The first pulse of the Tarim flood basalt was erupted at 291-290Ma, characterized by OIB-like Zr/Nb (~5.83), Nb/La and Ce/Pb ratios, and PUM-like initial 187Os/188Os ratios (0.1308-0.1329). They're plotted along a 290±11Ma isochron, implying a pristine "plume mantle" source. The second pulse of the Tarim flood basalt was erupted at 283-281 Ma, with Zr/Nb (~13.6), Nb/La and Ce/Pb ratios similar or close to the lower crust and initial 187Os/188Os ratios (0.1743~19.6740) that deviated from the ~290 Ma isochron line, indicative of significant crustal assimilation. Mantle-derived peridotite and pyroxenite xenoliths hosted in Cenozoic alkali basalts (~20 Ma) are found in the Xikeer, western Tarim Block. Based on their petrographic and geochemical characteristics, peridotite xenoliths can be divided into three groups. Group 1 peridotites, with the presence of the high Mg-number of olivines (91-93) and spinel-pyroxenes clusters, experienced high-degree melt extraction (~17% fractional melting) from garnet- to spinel-stable field. Groups 2 and 3 peridotites, characterized by the clinopyroxenes with spoon-shaped and highly fractionated REE patterns respectively, underwent extensive silicate melt metasomatism at low melt/rock ratios (15) and that the host basanite is incapable of being the metasomatic agent. The Re-Os isotopic systematics of the Xikeer peridotites and pyroxenites yield an isochron of 290±11 Ma, virtually identical to the age of Tarim flood basalts. Their PUM-like Os initial ratios and convecting mantle-like ɛNd(t=290 Ma) strongly suggest that the Xikeer mantle xenoliths derive from the plume mantle. We propose that the Xikeer xenolith suite recorded mantle 'auto-refertilization' process, i.e., they may have been initially formed by melt extraction from the convecting mantle and

  8. An analytic model of axisymmetric mantle plume due to thermal and chemical diffusion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Liu, Mian; Chase, Clement G.

    1990-01-01

    An analytic model of axisymmetric mantle plumes driven by either thermal diffusion or combined diffusion of both heat and chemical species from a point source is presented. The governing equations are solved numerically in cylindrical coordinates for a Newtonian fluid with constant viscosity. Instead of starting from an assumed plume source, constraints on the source parameters, such as the depth of the source regions and the total heat input from the plume sources, are deduced using the geophysical characteristics of mantle plumes inferred from modelling of hotspot swells. The Hawaiian hotspot and the Bermuda hotspot are used as examples. Narrow mantle plumes are expected for likely mantle viscosities. The temperature anomaly and the size of thermal plumes underneath the lithosphere can be sensitive indicators of plume depth. The Hawaiian plume is likely to originate at a much greater depth than the Bermuda plume. One suggestive result puts the Hawaiian plume source at a depth near the core-mantle boundary and the source of the Bermuda plume in the upper mantle, close to the 700 km discontinuity. The total thermal energy input by the source region to the Hawaiian plume is about 5 x 10(10) watts. The corresponding diameter of the source region is about 100 to 150 km. Chemical diffusion from the same source does not affect the thermal structure of the plume.

  9. The interaction of plume heads with compositional discontinuities in the Earth's mantle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Manga, Michael; Stone, Howard A.; O'Connell, Richard J.

    1993-01-01

    The effects of compositional discontinuities of density and viscosity in the Earth's mantle on the ascent of mantle plume heads is studied using a boundary integral numerical technique. Three specific problems are considered: (1) a plume head rising away from a deformable interface, (2) a plume head passing through an interface, and (3) a plume head approaching the surface of the Earth. For the case of a plume attached to a free-surface, the calculated time-dependent plume shapesare compared with experimental results. Two principle modes of plume head deformation are observed: plume head elingation or the formation of a cavity inside the plume head. The inferred structure of mantle plumes, namely, a large plume head with a long tail, is characteristic of plumes attached to their source region, and also of buoyant material moving away from an interface and of buoyant material moving through an interface from a high- to low-viscosity region. As a rising plume head approaches the upper mantle, most of the lower mantle will quickly drain from the gap between the plume head and the upper mantle if the plume head enters the upper mantle. If the plume head moves from a high- to low-viscosity region, the plume head becomes significantly elongated and, for the viscosity contrasts thought to exist in the Earth, could extend from the 670 km discontinuity to the surface. Plume heads that are extended owing to a viscosity decrease in the upper mantle have a cylindrical geometry. The dynamic surface topography induced by plume heads is bell-shaped when the top of the plume head is at depths greater than about 0.1 plume head radii. As the plume head approaches the surface and spreads, the dynamic topography becomes plateau-shaped. The largest stresses are produced in the early stages of plume spreading when the plume head is still nearly spherical, and the surface expression of these stresses is likely to be dominated by radial extension. As the plume spreads, compressional

  10. A >100 Ma Mantle Geochemical Record: Retiring Mantle Plumes may be Premature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Konter, J. G.; Hanan, B. B.; Blichert-Toft, J.; Koppers, A. A.; Plank, T.; Staudigel, H.

    2006-12-01

    Hotspot volcanism has long been attributed to mantle plumes, but in recent years suggestions have been made that plate tectonic processes, such as extension, can account for all hotspot tracks. This explanation involves a profoundly less dynamic lower mantle, which justifies a critical evaluation before the plume model is dismissed. Such an evaluation has to involve a wide range of geochemical, geological, and geophysical techniques, broadly investigating the products of volcanism as well as the underlying lithosphere and mantle. We argue here that the combined geological record and geochemistry of intraplate volcanoes holds some important clues that help us decide between models of plume-like upwelling versus passive upwelling with lithospheric extension. The best of these integrated datasets can be obtained from the long seamount chains in the Pacific Ocean. A new combined dataset of trace element and isotopic compositions, along with modern 40Ar/39Ar ages from seamounts in the Gilbert Ridge, Tokelau chain, and West Pacific Seamount Province (WPSP) provides a record of current to Cretaceous volcanism in the South Pacific. We have reconstructed the eruptive locations of the seamounts using a range of absolute plate motion models, including some models with hotspot motion and others that use the Indo-Atlantic hotspot reference frame. Our results show that the backtracked locations consistently form clusters (300km radius) around the active ends of the Macdonald, Rurutu and Rarotonga hotspot chains, while closely matching their distinct C-HIMU and C-EM1 signatures. The oldest WPSP seamounts (older than 100 Ma) form the only exception and backtrack, with larger uncertainty, to north of Rarotonga. Therefore, the mantle currently underlying the Cook-Austral islands has produced volcanoes in three geochemically distinct areas for at least 100 m.y. Furthermore, we find the shortest mantle residence time, 0.6 Ga, for a source of mixed recycled DMM and an EM1-like

  11. Seismic evidence of the Hainan mantle plume by receiver function analysis in southern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, S. Shawn; Chen, Y. John

    2016-09-01

    The Lei-Qiong region is the largest igneous province in southern China and may be a surface expression of a mantle plume beneath the region (the Hainan mantle plume). To investigate the existence of the Hainan mantle plume, we used P-to-S receiver function to image the major seismic discontinuities beneath this region with a regional dense broadband array. We found that the Moho discontinuity beneath the Leizhou Peninsula, mostly covered by Cenozoic basaltic outcrops, is 10-15 km deeper compared to the adjacent region of Eurasian continental margin, showing a thickened local crust by upwelling mantle materials. Additionally, the imaged 410- and 660-km discontinuities suggest a thinner-than-normal mantle transition zone beneath the region, implying that hot materials penetrate through the transition zone from the lower mantle. Both seismic evidences support the existence of the mantle plume, which might be 170-200°C hotter than the surrounding mantle.

  12. Geodynamic modeling of eclogite-bearing mantle plumes: Ascent dynamics, plume-plate-interaction and surface manifestations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dannberg, Juliane; Sobolev, Stephan

    2014-05-01

    According to widely accepted models, plumes ascend from the deep mantle and cause massive melting when they reach the base of the lithosphere. Classical geodynamic models consider plumes as purely thermal and thus predict a flattening of the plume head to a disk-like structure and thin plume tails. However, geochemical data indicate that plumes have a different composition than the average mantle material and it has been suggested a long time ago that subducted oceanic crust could be recycled by mantle plumes. In addition, seismic imaging reveals thicker plume tails as well as a more complex plume structure in the upper mantle, including broad low-velocity anomalies up to 400 km depth and elongated low-velocity fingers fed by plumes. While recent numerical models have considered a different chemistry to explain complex plume shapes or zoning within plumes, they either are restricted to only a part of the plume evolution or use simplified material models. However, due to the high density of recycled oceanic crust, thermo-chemical plumes are expected to have much smaller buoyancy than thermal plumes. Therefore it is especially important to incorporate realistic material properties, as they can influence the plume dynamics crucially and determine if a plume reaches the lithosphere or remains in deeper parts of the mantle. We perform numerical experiments in a 3D spherical shell geometry to study the dynamics of the plume ascent, the interaction between plume- and plate-driven flow and the dynamics of melting in a plume head. For that purpose, we use the finite-element code ASPECT, which allows for complex temperature-, pressure-, and composition-dependent material properties. Moreover, our models incorporate phase transitions (including melting) with the accompanying rheological and density changes, Clapeyron slopes and latent heat effects for the peridotite and eclogite phase, mantle compressibility and a highly temperature- and depth-dependent viscosity. We study

  13. Linking mantle plumes, large igneous provinces and environmental catastrophes.

    PubMed

    Sobolev, Stephan V; Sobolev, Alexander V; Kuzmin, Dmitry V; Krivolutskaya, Nadezhda A; Petrunin, Alexey G; Arndt, Nicholas T; Radko, Viktor A; Vasiliev, Yuri R

    2011-09-15

    Large igneous provinces (LIPs) are known for their rapid production of enormous volumes of magma (up to several million cubic kilometres in less than a million years), for marked thinning of the lithosphere, often ending with a continental break-up, and for their links to global environmental catastrophes. Despite the importance of LIPs, controversy surrounds even the basic idea that they form through melting in the heads of thermal mantle plumes. The Permo-Triassic Siberian Traps--the type example and the largest continental LIP--is located on thick cratonic lithosphere and was synchronous with the largest known mass-extinction event. However, there is no evidence of pre-magmatic uplift or of a large lithospheric stretching, as predicted above a plume head. Moreover, estimates of magmatic CO(2) degassing from the Siberian Traps are considered insufficient to trigger climatic crises, leading to the hypothesis that the release of thermogenic gases from the sediment pile caused the mass extinction. Here we present petrological evidence for a large amount (15 wt%) of dense recycled oceanic crust in the head of the plume and develop a thermomechanical model that predicts no pre-magmatic uplift and requires no lithospheric extension. The model implies extensive plume melting and heterogeneous erosion of the thick cratonic lithosphere over the course of a few hundred thousand years. The model suggests that massive degassing of CO(2) and HCl, mostly from the recycled crust in the plume head, could alone trigger a mass extinction and predicts it happening before the main volcanic phase, in agreement with stratigraphic and geochronological data for the Siberian Traps and other LIPs. PMID:21921914

  14. Avalanches at the Core-Mantle Boundary: Possible Role in Geomagnetic Reversals, Mantle Plumes, and Superchrons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muller, R. A.; Levine, J.; Rohde, R.

    2002-12-01

    Avalanches at the core-mantle boundary have not been directly observed, but if they exist they could affect many geophysical phenomena. Avalanches occur in ?sediment? accumulating on the inner surface of the mantle (according to the theory of Buffett et al.). Because the sediment is not evenly deposited, avalanches could provide the primary mechanism to redistribute sedimentary material evenly over the core-mantle boundary. Core-mantle avalanches, like turbidity flows in the ocean, consist of both solid material and entrained liquid. Such flows can occur at shallow angles (less than a few degrees) and could continue for many kilometers or hundreds of kilometers, depending on the topography. However, these avalanches are upside-down: they flow upward, propelled by buoyancy, into inverted valleys on the mantle surface. The avalanches mix relatively cool sediment with hot liquid iron, creating a redistribution of heat near the boundary. If the avalanche is sufficiently thick (100 m) then the cold pulse will create a downward plume in the core which can disrupt the convective cells that maintain the Earth?s dipole field. When the cells reestablish, the result is a geomagnetic reversal or excursion. We predict a reversal pattern different from that of the chaotic reversals seen in simulations by Glatzmeier. Avalanche-triggered reversals begin with a rapid drop in the dipole moment (but with higher order moments increasing), followed by a period with low dipole moment lasting from hundreds to thousands of years, followed by a rapid build-up of the reversed dipole field. Studies of the detailed time structure of reversals can test the model. As with turbidity flows, we expect a spectrum of avalanche sizes. The largest avalanches are the least probable. The sudden removal of a sediment blanket exposes the lower mantle to a pulse of heat, and for sufficiently large avalanches (>> 100 meters thick) this can contribute to the conditions needed for a mantle plume. A large

  15. Plume Generation Zones On The Core Mantle Boundary: their origin and what they tell about how the Earth works - and how it has worked (Arthur Holmes Medal Lecture)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burke, Kevin

    2014-05-01

    It is more than 50 years since Wilson (1963) suggested that a fixed plume of deep origin from the convecting mantle is generating the Hotspots of the Hawaiian chain on the overlying moving rigid lithosphere and nearly 45 years since Morgan (1972) followed by suggesting that the plumes which generate Hotspots rise only from the Core/Mantle Boundary (CMB). During the past ~ 15 years testing has begun of a refinement of Morgan's idea based on the observation that Plumes responsible for Hotspots, Large Igneous Provinces (LIPs) and a significant fraction of other igneous rocks (including kimberlites) originate only in Plume Generation Zones (PGZs) at the edges on the CMB of one or other of TUZO and JASON the 2 antipodal, equatorial, Large Low Shear Wave Velocity Provinces (LLSVPs) of the deep mantle (Garnero et al. 2007) or from similar PGZs at the edges on the CMB of ~8 smaller Low Shear Wave Velocity Provinces. Today I will: (i) demonstrate using dated Hotspot, Large Igneous Province and Kimberlite occurrence history and paleomagnetic rotations (e.g. Torsvik et al. 2010, Burke et al.2008) the stability throughout the past 0.55 Ga of the LLSVPs and LSVPs (ii) show from the history of the Earth and Mars how the LLSVPs and LSVPs are likely to have formed early in Earth history and to have been stable since ~ 4.4 Ga (Burke et al. 2012) (iii) show, following an analogy suggested by Jack Whitehead of similarity to atmospheric fronts, why plumes are generated only from PGZs on the CMB at the margins of LLSVPs and LSVPs. (iv) show from results of recent seismological studies of Iceland, Jan Mayen, Hawaii, Yellowstone, the Afar and Ontong Java, that although plumes rise vertically in the deep mantle from the CMB their fate in the top ~ 1, 000 km of the mantle is proving to be varied and to depend largely, as Wilson suggested, on how they interact with the plates above them. Properties of the Plume Generation Zones (PGZs) on the CMB and of the plumes that rise from them are

  16. Mantle plumes, continental magmatism and asymmetry in the South Atlantic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gallagher, Kerry; Hawkesworth, Chris

    1994-05-01

    Melt production rates are estimated along the ocean tracks (Rio Grande Rise, Walvis Ridge) and the onshore Paraná/Etendeka Flood Basalt Province for the mantle plume currently associated with Tristan da Cunha in the South Atlantic. Assuming that the volcanic edifice is locally compensated with a thickened crust, the maximum oceanic rate (˜ 0.3 km 3 a - 1) is similar to the value for the continental flood basalt, calculated using the surface volume of lava and a duration of 5 m.y. However, this latter estimate is conservative, and the appropriate rate is probably at least a factor of 5 higher. The maximum mantle potential temperature for the ocean plume tracks is estimated to have been 1450-1540°C, assuming a dry peridotite source. Using a similar model, temperatures in excess of 1600°C are required to explain the observed magma volumes onshore. This is because there is no significant extension in the region where the oldest lavas occur. It is argued that the observed volumes of melt can be generated with small amounts of extension and with plume temperatures of < 1500°C if melting in the lithosphere is strongly influenced by the relative enrichment of volatiles. Moreover, the model predicts the inferred change to an asthenosphere-dominated source when significant extension occurs. Recent geochonological data have shown that the continental volcanics are ˜ 138 Ma in the northwest of the Paraná province and become progressively younger to the southeast. Oceanic melt production rates decrease by a factor of 3-5 towards the mid-ocean ridge/Tristan da Cunha. Intriguingly, melt production rates on the Rio Grande Rise vary to more than twice that of the Walvis Ridge for oceanic crust of similar age. This asymmetry is also seen in the continental regions, most obviously in the preserved volume of lava in the Paraná and Etendeka, but also in the topography of the underplated continental margin and the orientation of dykes and oblique extension structures. These

  17. Plate boundary processes as alternatives to mantle plume effects on the Reykjanes Ridge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martinez, F.; Hey, R. N.; Eason, D. E.

    2015-12-01

    The North Atlantic basin displays clear regional anomalies in depth and other features centered near Iceland. A current paradigm holds that these anomalies are due to a mantle plume and that the Reykjanes Ridge, located over this plume, is a sensitive recorder of its activity in the crust it accretes. Thus, many seafloor spreading features of the Reykjanes Ridge including axial reconfigurations from orthogonal to oblique spreading, elimination of segment offsets and transform faults, and formation of V-shaped ridges and troughs flanking the axis have been attributed to mantle plume thermal effects radiating outward from beneath Iceland. Based on new geophysical data from a R/V Marcus G Langseth cruise to the southern Reykjanes Ridge we propose an alternate hypothesis: that plate boundary processes superimposed on the larger regional anomalies can account for these seafloor spreading features. A key plate boundary process is sub-axial buoyant mantle upwelling because it can increase melt production and crustal thickness relative to passive mantle advection without changes in mantle temperature. We hypothesize that on a long and linear slow spreading ridge underlain by a regional gradient in mantle temperature and water content, buoyant mantle upwelling can propagate along axis and create many of the seafloor spreading effects currently attributed to radiating mantle plume thermal pulses. However, propagating buoyant mantle upwelling is fundamentally a wave-like phenomenon wherein only the form of upwelling propagates along axis, not actual mantle material. This has profoundly different implications for the formation of crustal structures than in mantle plume models, which require actual rapid radial mantle flow. This property of the sub-axial propagating buoyant mantle upwelling model, if correct, invalidates interpretation of prominent Reykjanes Ridge seafloor spreading features as indicators of regional mantle plume flow and requires reevaluation of geodynamic

  18. Long-term interaction between mid-ocean ridges and mantle plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whittaker, J. M.; Afonso, J. C.; Masterton, S.; Müller, R. D.; Wessel, P.; Williams, S. E.; Seton, M.

    2015-06-01

    Plate tectonic motions are commonly considered to be driven by slab pull at subduction zones and ridge push at mid-ocean ridges, with motion punctuated by plumes of hot material rising from the lower mantle. Within this model, the geometry and location of mid-ocean ridges are considered to be independent of lower-mantle dynamics, such as deeply sourced plumes that produce voluminous lava eruptions--termed large igneous provinces. Here we use a global plate model to reconstruct the locations of large igneous provinces relative to plumes and mid-ocean ridges at the time they formed. We find that large igneous provinces repeatedly formed at specific locations where mid-ocean ridges and plumes interact. We calculate how much mantle material was converted to oceanic lithosphere at the mid-ocean ridges and find that slowly migrating ridge systems that have been stabilized by upwelling plumes have extracted large volumes of material from the same part of the upper mantle over periods up to 180 million years. The geochemical signatures of mid-ocean ridge basalts and seismic tomographic data show that upper-mantle temperatures are elevated at significant distances from ridge-plume interactions, indicating a far-field, indirect influence of plume-ridge interactions on the upper-mantle structure. We conclude that strong feedbacks exist between the dynamics of slowly migrating ridges and deeply sourced plumes.

  19. The role of a mantle plume in the formation of Yellowstone volcanism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leonard, Tiffany; Liu, Lijun

    2016-02-01

    The origin of the Yellowstone volcanic province remains debated. Proposed hypotheses involve either a mantle plume or not. Recent tomographic images allow a quantitative evaluation of the plume hypothesis and its interaction with the Farallon slabs. Using 4-D geodynamic models with data assimilation, we find that the slab is always in the way of the initially rising plume and that the plume could reach the surface only through the broken slab hinge at ~15 Ma. For most of the time, the sinking slabs dominate the mantle flow and prohibit upwelling. We find that a plume that satisfies the present mantle image beneath Yellowstone fails to predict both voluminous hot materials at shallow depths beneath the western U.S. and the age migration of the hot spot tracks. We suggest that a plume is likely to have much less influence on the Yellowstone volcanism than previously thought.

  20. New observational and experimental evidence for a plume-fed asthenosphere boundary layer in mantle convection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morgan, J. P.; Hasenclever, J.; Shi, C.

    2013-03-01

    The textbook view is that the asthenosphere is the place beneath the tectonic plates where competing temperature and pressure effects on mantle rheology result in the lowest viscosity region of Earth's mantle. We think the sub-oceanic asthenosphere exists for a different reason, that instead it is where rising plumes of hot mantle stall and spread out beneath the strong tectonic plates. Below this plume-fed asthenosphere is a thermal and density inversion with cooler underlying average-temperature mantle. Here we show several recent seismic studies that are consistent with a plume-fed asthenosphere. These include the seismic inferences that asthenosphere appears to resist being dragged down at subduction zones, that a sub-oceanic thermal inversion ∼250-350 km deep is needed to explain the seismic velocity gradient there for an isochemical mantle, that a fast 'halo' of shear-wave travel-times surrounds the Hawaiian plume conduit, and that an apparent seismic reflector is found ∼300 km beneath Pacific seafloor near Hawaii. We also present 2D axisymmetric and 3D numerical experiments that demonstrate these effects in internally consistent models with a plume-fed asthenosphere. If confirmed, the existence of a plume-fed asthenosphere will change our understanding of the dynamics of mantle convection and melting, and the links between surface plate motions and mantle convection.

  1. What does hotspot-ridge interaction tell us about mantle plumes?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murton, B. J.

    2005-05-01

    While the scientific community is currently contending the origin and nature of 'plumes', there is no doubt that close proximity to hotspots affects the structural, volcanic and geochemical character of spreading ridges. We can consider two end-member processes that may account for the 'plume' phenomenon: the classic and current paradigm of a column of rising mantle, made buoyant by an excess of temperature and originating deep within the mantle, or a non-dynamic mechanism involving a geochemical anomaly, residing passively in the shallow mantle, that melts spontaneously as a result of intraplate stresses or asthenospheric motion. While a priori, both mechanisms may hold true, they can be distinguished for individual 'plumes' where they interact with a spreading ridge that leaves a lithospheric and crustal trail recording the history of that interaction. The Reykjanes Ridge, southwest of Iceland, has all the attributes associated with a ridge-centred 'plume'. These include: thickening of the crust, shallowing of the ridge axis, an increase in segment length, and enrichment in geochemical tracers of the 'plume' mantle. Evidence for dynamic interaction between ridge and plume comes from southward closing V-shaped ridges, centred on the plate boundary, that indicate southward advection of plume mantle away from Iceland. Geochemical tracers include incompatible trace element enrichment and isotope ratios (e.g. Sr, Nd, Pb and He) that show multi-component mixing between several depleted and enriched sources. These sources are resident in the mantle beneath the Reykjanes Ridge and show modification by melting processes, consistent with a history of advection away from Iceland. Further evidence for interaction between a dynamic 'plume' and spreading ridge comes from the Réunion-Central Indian Ridge couplet, which comprises an off-axis plume and medium-rate spreading centre. Here, the ridge also exhibits attributes associated with 'plume' influence such as shallowing

  2. Crustal Structure of the Gulf of Aden Continental Margins, from Afar to Oman, by Ambient Noise Seismic Tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Korostelev, F.; Weemstra, C.; Boschi, L.; Leroy, S. D.; Ren, Y.; Stuart, G. W.; Keir, D.; Rolandone, F.; Ahmed, A.; Al Ganad, I.; Khanbari, K. M.; Doubre, C.; Hammond, J. O. S.; Kendall, J. M.

    2014-12-01

    Continental rupture processes under mantle plume influence are still poorly known although extensively studied. The Gulf of Aden presents volcanic margins to the west, where they are influenced by the Afar hotspot, and non volcanic margins east of longitude 46° E. We imaged the crustal structure of the Gulf of Aden continental margins from Afar to Oman to evaluate the role of the Afar plume on the evolution of the passive margin and its extent towards the East. We use Ambient Noise Seismic Tomography to better understand the architecture and processes along the Gulf of Aden. This recent method, developed in the last decade, allows us to study the seismic signal propagating between two seismic stations. Ambient Noise Seismic Tomography is thus free from artifacts related to the distribution of earthquakes. We collected continuous records from about 200 permanent or temporary stations since 1999 to compute Rayleigh phase velocity maps over the Gulf of Aden.

  3. Receiver function imaging of the onset of melting, implications for volcanism beneath the Afar Rift in contrast to hotspot environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rychert, C. A.; Harmon, N.; Hammond, J. O.; Laske, G.; Kendall, J.; Ebinger, C. J.; Shearer, P. M.; Bastow, I. D.; Keir, D.; Ayele, A.; Belachew, M.; Stuart, G. W.

    2012-12-01

    Heating, melting, and stretching destroy continents at volcanic rifts. Mantle plumes are often invoked to thermally weaken the continental lithosphere and accommodate rifting through the influx of magma. However the relative effects of mechanical stretching vs. melt infiltration and weakening are not well quantified during the evolution of rifting. S-to-p (Sp) imaging beneath the Afar Rift and hotspot regions such as Hawaii provides additional constraints. We use data from the Ethiopia/Kenya Broadband Seismic Experiment (EKBSE), the Ethiopia Afar Geophysical Lithospheric Experiment (EAGLE), a new UK/US led deployment of 46 stations in the Afar depression and surrounding area, and the PLUME experiment. We use two methodologies to investigate structure and locate robust features: 1) binning by conversion point and then simultaneous deconvolution in the frequency domain, and 2) extended multitaper followed by migration and stacking. We image a lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary at ~75 km beneath the flank of the Afar Rift vs. its complete absence beneath the rift, where the mantle lithosphere has been totally destroyed. Instead a strong velocity increase with depth at ~75 km depth matches geodynamic model predictions for a drop in melt percentage at the onset of decompression melting. The shallow depth of the onset of melting is consistent with a mantle potential temperature = 1350 - 1400°C, i.e., typical for adiabatic decompression melting. Therefore although a plume initially destroyed the mantle lithosphere, its influence directly beneath Afar today is minimal. Volcanism continues via adiabatic decompression melting assisted by strong melt buoyancy effects. This contrasts with a similar feature at much deeper depth, ~150 km, just west of Hawaii, where a deep thermal plume is hypothesized to impinge on the lithosphere. Improved high resolution imaging of rifting, ridges, and hotspots in a variety of stages and tectonic settings will increase constraints on the

  4. The Role of Subduction and Mantle Plumes in the Supercontinent Cycle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heron, P. J.; Lowman, J. P.; Stein, C.

    2014-12-01

    Several processes unfold during the supercontinent cycle, more than one of which might result in an elevation in subcontinental mantle temperatures through the generation of mantle plumes. Geodynamic modeling motivated by paleogeographic plate reconstructions has indicated that subcontinental mantle upwellings appear below large continents that are extensively ringed by subduction zones. Moreover, several numerical simulations of supercontinent formation and dispersal show that the genesis of subcontinental plumes follows the formation of subduction zones on the edges of the supercontinent, rather than resulting from continental thermal insulation. However, the influence of the location of mantle downwellings on the position of subcontinental plumes has received little attention. Using 2D and 3D numerical mantle convection models, featuring geotherm- and pressure- dependent viscosity profiles with thermally and mechanically distinct oceanic and continental plates, we examine the evolution of mantle dynamics after continental accretion at a subduction zone (as occurred during the formation of Pangea). In simulations of vigorous mantle convection, we consider a range of supercontinent areas and change the upper and lower mantle viscosity contrast to determine their relation to plume formation. The results presented show that the formation of subduction zones at the margins of a supercontinent has a profound effect on mantle dynamics, and may help to explain how the sites of previous (and future) large igneous provinces were (or will be) determined. Subcontinental plume locations for all viscosity profiles show varying degrees of dependence on the location of continental margin subduction post-supercontinent formation. Furthermore, we find that changing the viscosity structure for mantle convection simulations (with similar surface heat flux) can determine the position (and number) of subcontinental plumes penetrating the upper mantle post-supercontinent formation.

  5. Geodynamically Consistent Interpretation of Seismic Tomography for Thermal and Thermochemical Mantle Plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Samuel, H.; Bercovici, D.

    2006-05-01

    Recent theoretical developments as well as increased data quality and coverage have allowed seismic tomographic imaging to better resolve narrower structures at both shallow and deep mantle depths. However, despite these improvements, the interpretation of tomographic images remains problematic mainly because of: (1) the trade off between temperature and composition and their different influence on mantle flow; (2) the difficulty in determining the extent and continuity of structures revealed by seismic tomography. We present two geodynamic studies on mantle plumes which illustrate the need to consider both geodynamic and mineral physics for a consistent interpretation of tomographic images in terms of temperature composition and flow. The first study aims to investigate the coupled effect of pressure and composition on thermochemical plumes. Using both high resolution 2D numerical modeling and simple analytical theory we show that the coupled effect of composition and pressure have a first order impact on the dynamics of mantle thermochemical plumes in the lower mantle: (1) For low Si enrichment of the plume relative to a reference pyrolitic mantle, an oscillatory behavior of the plume head is observed; (2) For Si-enriched plume compositions, the chemical density excess of the plume increases with height, leading to stagnation of large plume heads at various depths in the lower mantle. As a consequence, these thermochemical plumes may display broad (~ 1200 km wide and more) negative seismic velocity anomalies at various lower mantle depths, which may not necessarily be associated with upwelling currents. The second study focuses on the identification of thermal mantle plumes by seismic tomography beneath the Hawaiian hot spot: we performed a set of 3D numerical experiments in a spherical shell to model a rising plume beneath a moving plate. The thermal structure obtained is converted into P and S wave seismic velocities using mineral physics considerations. We

  6. Modeling of Mauritius as a Heterogeneous Mantle Plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moore, J. C.; White, W. M.; Paul, D.; Duncan, R. A.

    2008-12-01

    Mauritius Island (20°20' S, 57°30' E) is located in the western Indian Ocean and is the penultimate volcanic island of the Réunion mantle plume. Mauritius has a well-established history of episodic volcanism and erosional hiatus, traditionally characterized by three chemically and temporally distinct eruptive phases: 1) the voluminous shield-building lavas of the Older Series (8.4-5.5 Ma), 2) the Intermediate Series (3.5-1.9 Ma), and 3) the Younger Series (1.0-0.00 Ma; Duncan, unpub. data). Recent collaboration with the Mauritian Water Resource Unit has permitted the study of a series of newly available drill cores, facilitating an advanced subsurface investigation into the evolution of the island. Radiometric dating of deep lava units from these cores has identified the earliest known sample from Mauritius (B18-1; 8.4 Ma) and demonstrated the existence of Intermediate and Younger Series lavas at previously unanticipated depths, some greater than 150 meters. Calculated volumes for the combined post- erosional lavas exceed 35 km3, closely resembling new results for Hawaiian analogues (20-60 km3; Garcia, pers. comm.). While these two post-erosional series remain temporally distinct (a 0.9 M.y. hiatus remains despite new dates), they are indistinguishable in major, trace, and isotopic composition. The shield building Older Series lavas are enriched in incompatible trace elements relative to the post-erosional lavas, an inverse relationship to that observed at both Hawaii (Maui, Oahu, and Kauai) and Tahaa (Societies). In contrast isotope systematics are consistent, with shield building lavas having more enriched isotopic signatures than post-erosional lavas. The observed differences cannot be explained solely by variations in the extent of partial melting and require distinct and heterogeneous sources for the shield and post-erosional lavas. Two magma generation scenarios for a heterogeneous mantle plume with enriched (eclogitic) and depleted (peridotitic

  7. The excess temperature of plumes rising from the core-mantle boundary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Albers, Michael; Christensen, Ulrich R.

    We study the rise of conduit-type thermal plumes from the core-mantle boundary (CMB) in a simplified numerical model. Viscosity is a strong function of temperature and pressure. Assuming that all plumes start with the same excess temperature at the CMB, we find that their temperature in the upper mantle is controlled by the plume flux and is insensitive to variations in viscosity or other material parameters or to the kind of flow law (Newtonian or non-linear). The reduction of excess temperature with height is stronger for weaker plumes. Plumes with a buoyancy flux of less than 1000 kg/s should have cooled so much that they would not melt beneath old lithosphere. The existence of such hot-spots possibly indicates that not all plumes rise from the CMB.

  8. Evidence for recycled Archaean oceanic mantle lithosphere in the Azores plume.

    PubMed

    Schaefer, Bruce F; Turner, Simon; Parkinson, Ian; Rogers, Nick; Hawkesworth, Chris

    2002-11-21

    The compositional differences between mid-ocean-ridge and ocean-island basalts place important constraints on the form of mantle convection. Also, it is thought that the scale and nature of heterogeneities within plumes and the degree to which heterogeneous material endures within the mantle might be reflected in spatial variations of basalt composition observed at the Earth's surface. Here we report osmium isotope data on lavas from a transect across the Azores archipelago which vary in a symmetrical pattern across what is thought to be a mantle plume. Many of the lavas from the centre of the plume have lower 187Os/188Os ratios than most ocean-island basalts and some extend to subchondritic 187Os/188Os ratios-lower than any yet reported from ocean-island basalts. These low ratios require derivation from a depleted, harzburgitic mantle, consistent with the low-iron signature of the Azores plume. Rhenium-depletion model ages extend to 2.5 Gyr, and we infer that the osmium isotope signature is unlikely to be derived from Iberian subcontinental lithospheric mantle. Instead, we interpret the osmium isotope signature as having a deep origin and infer that it may be recycled, Archaean oceanic mantle lithosphere that has delaminated from its overlying oceanic crust. If correct, our data provide evidence for deep mantle subduction and storage of oceanic mantle lithosphere during the Archaean era.

  9. Thermal plume models and melt generation in East Africa: A dynamic modeling approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Shu-Chuan; Kuo, Ban-Yuan; Chiao, Ling-Yun; van Keken, Peter E.

    2005-08-01

    The hypothesis that thermal plumes contribute to the Cenozoic magmatism in East Africa is now widely accepted. The controversy lies on how many plumes exist and where they may be located. In this study we show numerical experiments of mantle convection models for a number of thermal plume models and discuss the implications for the melt generation in East Africa. We investigate how the plume(s), the Tanzania craton, and the African lithospheric structure may interplay to result in the magmatism distribution in East Africa since the Eocene. Our results demonstrate that the variable thickness of the lithosphere modulates melt generation. A single-plume model cannot reproduce the observations consistently. Double-plume models with plumes located at Afar and Kenya regions are viable with reasonable physical properties. The distribution of the plume material, however, is sensitive to the angle at which the Tanzania craton and regions of thick lithosphere approach the plume, as the African plate moves. Models that have present-day location of the second plume (Kenya plume) under the Eastern rift or the interior of the Tanzania craton can best match the basalt distribution. Our model results suggest that the basaltic eruptions associated with the Afar plume tap a relatively deep source of the plume body in general, whereas melting occurs at shallower depths for the Kenya plume except for the Eocene episode. The magmatism is derived from a more depleted mantle source in the low-Ti basalt province of northwestern Ethiopia. Our experiments indicate the thermal influence of the Afar plume but predict an absence of plume-derived melts, suggesting the melt generation within lithosphere triggered by thermal influence of Afar plume in this region. Our model results suggest that plume plays an active role on the initiation of the rifting process in East Africa.

  10. Plume's buoyancy and heat fluxes from the deep mantle estimated by an instantaneous mantle flow simulation based on the S40RTS global seismic tomography model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoshida, Masaki

    2012-11-01

    It is still an open question as to how much heat is transported from the deep mantle to the upper mantle by mantle upwelling plumes, which would impose a strong constraint on models of the thermal evolution of the earth. Here I perform numerical computations of instantaneous mantle flow based on a recent highly resolved global seismic tomography model (S40RTS), apply new simple fluid dynamics theories to the plume's radius and velocity, considering a Poiseuille flow assumption and a power-law relationship between the boundary layer thickness and Rayleigh number, and estimate the plume's buoyancy and heat fluxes from the deep lower mantle under varying plume viscosity. The results show that for some major mantle upwelling plumes with localized strong ascent velocity under the South Pacific and Africa, the buoyancy fluxes of each plume beneath the ringwoodite to perovskite + magnesiowüstite ("660-km") phase decomposition boundary are comparable to those inferred from observed hotspot swell volumes on the earth, i.e., on the order of 1 Mg s-1, when the plume viscosity is 1019-1020 Pa s. This result, together with previous numerical simulations of mantle convection and the gentle Clausius-Clapeyron slope for the 660-km phase decomposition derived from recent high-pressure measurements under dehydrated/hydrated conditions in the mantle transition zone, implies that mantle upwelling plumes in the lower mantle penetrate the 660-km phase decomposition boundary without significant loss in thermal buoyancy because of the weak thermal barrier at the 660-km boundary. The total plume heat flux under the South Pacific is estimated to be about 1 TW beneath the 660-km boundary, which is significantly smaller than the core-mantle boundary heat flux. Previously published scaling laws for the plume's radius and velocity based on a plume spacing theory, which explains well plume dynamics in three-dimensional time-dependent mantle convection, suggest that these plume fluxes depend

  11. Tectonic plates, D (double prime) thermal structure, and the nature of mantle plumes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lenardic, A.; Kaula, W. M.

    1994-01-01

    It is proposed that subducting tectonic plates can affect the nature of thermal mantle plumes by determining the temperature drop across a plume source layer. The temperature drop affects source layer stability and the morphology of plumes emitted from it. Numerical models are presented to demonstrate how introduction of platelike behavior in a convecting temperature dependent medium, driven by a combination of internal and basal heating, can increase the temperature drop across the lower boundary layer. The temperature drop increases dramatically following introduction of platelike behavior due to formation of a cold temperature inversion above the lower boundary layer. This thermal inversion, induced by deposition of upper boundary layer material to the system base, decays in time, but the temperature drop across the lower boundary layer always remains considerably higher than in models lacking platelike behavior. On the basis of model-inferred boundary layer temperature drops and previous studies of plume dynamics, we argue that generally accepted notions as to the nature of mantle plumes on Earth may hinge on the presence of plates. The implication for Mars and Venus, planets apparently lacking plate tectonics, is that mantle plumes of these planets may differ morphologically from those of Earth. A corollary model-based argument is that as a result of slab-induced thermal inversions above the core mantle boundary the lower most mantle may be subadiabatic, on average (in space and time), if major plate reorganization timescales are less than those acquired to diffuse newly deposited slab material.

  12. Broad plumes rooted at the base of the Earth's mantle beneath major hotspots.

    PubMed

    French, Scott W; Romanowicz, Barbara

    2015-09-01

    Plumes of hot upwelling rock rooted in the deep mantle have been proposed as a possible origin of hotspot volcanoes, but this idea is the subject of vigorous debate. On the basis of geodynamic computations, plumes of purely thermal origin should comprise thin tails, only several hundred kilometres wide, and be difficult to detect using standard seismic tomography techniques. Here we describe the use of a whole-mantle seismic imaging technique--combining accurate wavefield computations with information contained in whole seismic waveforms--that reveals the presence of broad (not thin), quasi-vertical conduits beneath many prominent hotspots. These conduits extend from the core-mantle boundary to about 1,000 kilometres below Earth's surface, where some are deflected horizontally, as though entrained into more vigorous upper-mantle circulation. At the base of the mantle, these conduits are rooted in patches of greatly reduced shear velocity that, in the case of Hawaii, Iceland and Samoa, correspond to the locations of known large ultralow-velocity zones. This correspondence clearly establishes a continuous connection between such zones and mantle plumes. We also show that the imaged conduits are robustly broader than classical thermal plume tails, suggesting that they are long-lived, and may have a thermochemical origin. Their vertical orientation suggests very sluggish background circulation below depths of 1,000 kilometres. Our results should provide constraints on studies of viscosity layering of Earth's mantle and guide further research into thermochemical convection. PMID:26333468

  13. Core Heat Flow and Suppression of Mantle Plumes by Plate-Scale Mantle Flow: Results From Laboratory Experiments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gonnermann, H. M.; Jellinek, A. M.; Richards, M. A.; Manga, M.

    2002-12-01

    Heat flow from the Earth's core to the mantle remains an unresolved quantity. Its value has implications for the core's thermal evolution and growth of the inner core, the geodynamo, and the relative abundance of radioactive elements in the core and mantle. Core heat flow is affected by dynamics of the lowermost mantle in three ways: (1) advection of heat by plume instabilities; (2) conductive heating of subducted material; and (3) suppression of plume instabilities, as well as advection of heat by plate-scale mantle flow. We present results from a boundary-layer analysis and laboratory experiments aimed at understanding the effects of an imposed large-scale circulation on thermal convection at high-Rayleigh number (106<=Ra<=109) in a fluid with a strongly temperature-dependent viscosity. The ultimate goal of this work is to better understand the effect of plate-scale mantle flow on heat flux across the CMB and on the dynamics of plume formation at the CMB. Our theoretical analysis is complemented by lab experiments, in which a layer of corn syrup is heated from below and a large-scale flow is induced in the fluid above the hot boundary. We identify 4 convective regions associated with high-Rayleigh number convection in the presence of a large-scale flow: (1) a subcritical TBL region (Domain I), where plume instabilities are suppressed by the advective thinning of the TBL and heat flux is increased relative to convection without large-scale flow; (2) a supercritical TBL region (Domain II), where plume instabilities are no longer suppressed and heat flux is equal to convection without large-scale flow; (3) a flow-dominated region (Domain III), which is free of plumes; and (4) a plume-dominated domain (Domain IV), where the interaction of hot buoyant plumes and imposed large-scale flow results in lateral advection and distortion of rising plumes. In addition, we present a boundary-layer analysis that predicts heat flux, Q, from a hot surface as a function of imposed

  14. Past Plate Motions and The Evolution of Earth's Lower Mantle: Relating LLSVPs and Plume Distribution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bull, A. L.; Torsvik, T. H.; Shephard, G. E.

    2015-12-01

    Seismic tomography elucidates broad, low shear-wave velocity structures in the lower mantle beneath Africa and the central Pacific with uncertain physical and compositional origins. The anomalously slow areas, which cover nearly 50% of the core-mantle boundary, are often referred to as Large Low Shear Velocity Provinces (LLSVPs) due to the reduced velocity of seismic waves passing through them. Several hypotheses have arisen to explain the LLSVPs in the context of large-scale mantle convection. One end-member scenario infers a spatial correlation between LLSVP margins at depth and the reconstructed surface eruption sites of hotspots, kimberlites, and Large Igneous Provinces. Such a correlation has been explained by the preferential triggering of plumes at LLSVP margins by impingement of the subducting lithosphere upon the lower thermal boundary layer at the interface between ambient mantle and the higher density structures. This scenario propounds that Earth's plate motion history plays a controlling role in plume development, and that the location, geometry and morphology of plumes may be influenced by the movement of subducting slabs. Here, we investigate what is necessary to create such a pattern of plume distribution in relation to LLSVPs. We consider what effect past plate motions may have had on the evolution of Earth's lower mantle, and discuss the development of mantle plumes in terms of subduction dynamics. We integrate plate tectonic histories and numerical models of mantle convection to investigate the role that subduction history plays in the development and evolution of plumes in the presence of LLSVPs. To test whether an interaction exists between the surface location of subduction and plume eruption sites, and if so, to what degree over time, we apply varying shifts to the absolute reference frame of the plate reconstruction. With this method, we are able to change the location of subduction at the surface and thus the global flow field. This in turn

  15. Double layering of a thermochemical plume in the upper mantle beneath Hawaii

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ballmer, M. D.; Ito, G.; Wolfe, C. J.; Cadio, C.; Solomon, S. C.

    2012-04-01

    Volcanism far from plate boundaries has traditionally been explained by "classical" plume theory. Classical plumes are typically described as narrow thermal upwellings that rise through the entire mantle to be deflected into a thin (<100 km) "pancake" beneath the overriding lithosphere. The pancake is thought to be deflected by the drag of the overriding plate and hence to support a hotspot swell that is parabolic in map view and symmetric about the direction of plate motion. Many hotspots and their swells, such as Cape Verde and Iceland, are indeed well explained by near-classical thermal plumes. High-resolution seismic velocity images obtained from the PLUME project support the concept of a deep-rooted mantle plume beneath the Hawaiian hotspot. However, in detail these images challenge traditional concepts inasmuch as they indicate a low-velocity body in the upper mantle that is too thick (~400 km) and asymmetric to be interpreted as a classical pancake. Classical plume theory is, moreover, inconsistent with several geochemical characteristics of Hawaiian magmas, which point to a heterogeneous mantle source involving mafic lithologies such as eclogite and not an exclusively thermal (i.e., isochemical) origin¹. To explore the dynamical and melting behavior of plumes containing a substantial fraction (~15%) of eclogite, we performed three-dimensional numerical simulations of thermochemical convection. Relative to ambient-mantle peridotite, eclogite is intrinsically dense. This density contrast is sensitive to phase changes in the upper mantle; the contrast peaks at 410-300 km and lessens at about 250-190 km depth, where eclogite is subsequently removed by melting. For a plume core with an eclogite content >12%, these effects locally increase the density beyond that of the ambient mantle. Therefore, the upwelling column forms a broad and thick pool at depths of 450-300 km (which we term the deep eclogite pool, or DEP). As the DEP is well supported by the deeper

  16. Constraining the Temporal and Spatial Evolution of Mantle Plumes Using the Stratigraphic Record

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mackay, L. M.; Jones, S. M.; White, N.

    2003-12-01

    Gravitational and tomographic studies provide a snap-shot of mantle plumes at the present day. However, these techniques are unable to constrain how mantle plumes have evolved, temporally and spatially, to their present day structures. A mantle plume will generate vertical motions in the overlying plate. These vertical motions will be recorded in the stratigraphic record of the region, enabling the size and planform of the mantle plume to be mapped out over time. During Cenozoic times, anomalous uplift and subsidence occurred throughout the North Atlantic region. These vertical motions most likely result from temporal and spatial variations of Iceland Plume activity. Quantifying uplift generated by the convective support of the Iceland Plume enables the extent of the Iceland Plume head to be mapped out. Here, we describe the record of activity of the southern half of the Iceland Plume head, which affected a region encompassing the British Isles, southern Greenland and eastern Canada. This record is based on stratigraphy along the extensional margins which fringe the North Atlantic Ocean. A detailed study has been carried out on the Moray Firth Basin, part of the North Sea rift system, using backstripped well-log data. The effect of tectonic subsidence has been removed from the basement subsidence profiles of 50 wells, enabling anomalous residual uplift and subsidence to be isolated. A transient Paleocene uplift-subsidence event, with a duration of approximately 15 Ma, is recorded throughout the Moray Firth Basin. The magnitude of peak uplift is 150--500 m. This transient uplift event has previously been identified in basins surrounding the British Isles, including the Faroe-Shetland Basin, the Porcupine Basin and the North Viking Graben. The initiating Iceland Plume provided dynamic support to the overlying plate and generated uplift. As the effect of the Iceland Plume in the British Isles region waned, subsidence occurred. These results from subsidence analysis

  17. Oceanic magmatic evolution during ocean opening under influence of mantle plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sushchevskaya, Nadezhda; Melanholina, Elena; Belyatsky, Boris; Krymsky, Robert; Migdisova, Natalya

    2015-04-01

    Petrology, geochemistry and geophysics as well as numerical simulation of spreading processes in plume impact environments on examples of Atlantic Ocean Iceland and the Central Atlantic plumes and Kerguelen plume in the Indian Ocean reveal: - under interaction of large plume and continental landmass the plume can contribute to splitting off individual lithosphere blocks, and their subsequent movement into the emergent ocean. At the same time enriched plume components often have geochemical characteristics of the intact continental lithosphere by early plume exposure. This is typical for trap magmatism in Antarctica, and for magmatism of North and Central Atlantic margins; - in the course of the geodynamic reconstruction under the whole region of the South Atlantic was formed (not in one step) metasomatized enriched sub-oceanic mantle with pyroxenite mantle geochemical characteristics and isotopic composition of enriched HIMU and EM-2 sources. That is typical for most of the islands in the West Antarctic. This mantle through spreading axes jumping involved in different proportions in the melting under the influence of higher-temperature rising asthenospheric lherzolite mantle; - CAP activity was brief enough (200 ± 2 Ma), but Karoo-Maud plume worked for a longer time and continued from 180 to 170 Ma ago in the main phase. Plume impact within Antarctica distributed to the South and to the East, leading to the formation of extended igneous provinces along the Transantarctic Mountains and along the east coast (Queen Maud Land province and Schirmacher Oasis). Moreover, this plume activity may be continued later on, after about 40 million years cessation, as Kerguelen plume within the newly-formed Indian Ocean, significantly affects the nature of the rift magmatism; - a large extended uplift in the eastern part of the Indian Ocean - Southeastern Indian Ridge (SEIR) was formed on the ancient spreading Wharton ridge near active Kerguelen plume. The strongest plume

  18. Reconstructing the Cenozoic evolution of the mantle: Implications for mantle plume dynamics under the Pacific and Indian plates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Glišović, Petar; Forte, Alessandro M.

    2014-03-01

    The lack of knowledge of the initial thermal state of the mantle in the geological past is an outstanding problem in mantle convection. The resolution of this problem also requires the modelling of 3-D mantle evolution that yields maximum consistency with a wide suite of geophysical constraints. Quantifying the robustness of the reconstructed thermal evolution is another major concern. To solve and estimate the robustness of the time-reversed (inverse) problem of mantle convection, we analyse two different numerical techniques: the quasi-reversible (QRV) and the backward advection (BAD) methods. Our investigation extends over the 65 Myr interval encompassing the Cenozoic era using a pseudo-spectral solution for compressible-flow thermal convection in 3-D spherical geometry. We find that the two dominant issues for solving the inverse problem of mantle convection are the choice of horizontally-averaged temperature (i.e., geotherm) and mechanical surface boundary conditions. We find, in particular, that the inclusion of thermal boundary layers that yield Earth-like heat flux at the top and bottom of the mantle has a critical impact on the reconstruction of mantle evolution. We have developed a new regularisation scheme for the QRV method using a time-dependent regularisation function. This revised implementation of the QRV method delivers time-dependent reconstructions of mantle heterogeneity that reveal: (1) the stability of Pacific and African ‘large low shear velocity provinces’ (LLSVP) over the last 65 Myr; (2) strong upward deflections of the CMB topography at 65 Ma beneath: the North Atlantic, the south-central Pacific, the East Pacific Rise (EPR) and the eastern Antarctica; (3) an anchored deep-mantle plume ascending directly under the EPR (Easter and Pitcairn hotspots) throughout the Cenozoic era; and (4) the appearance of the transient Reunion plume head beneath the western edge of the Deccan Plateau at 65 Ma. Our reconstructions of Cenozoic mantle

  19. Searching for the signal of the Iceland plume: Seismic observations of mantle discontinuities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jenkins, J.; Cottaar, S.; White, R. S.; Deuss, A. F.

    2015-12-01

    The presence of a mantle plume beneath Iceland has long been hypothesised to explain its high volumes of crustal volcanism. Practical constraints in seismic tomography mean that thin slow velocity anomalies representative of a plume signature are difficult to image. However it is possible to infer the presence of temperature anomalies at depth from the effect they have on phase transitions in surrounding mantle material. Here, we use P to S seismic wave conversions at mantle discontinuities to search for the signal of a mantle plume beneath Iceland. We employ a large data set from a wide range of seismic stations across the North Atlantic region and a dense network in Iceland, including more than 100 University of Cambridge run stations. Data are used to create over 6000 receiver functions which are converted from time to depth including 3D corrections for variations in crustal thickness and upper mantle velocity heterogeneities. The global transition zone discontinuities at depths of 410 and 660km are thought to be caused by phase changes in the olivine component of mantle rocks. We find that both the 410 and 660 discontinuities are depressed under Iceland compared to normal depths in the surrounding region. The opposite signs of the Clapeyron slopes describing the olivine phase transitions predict anti-correlation of discontinuity topography, thus observations of correlated discontinuities are generally dismissed as an artefact due to under corrected upper mantle velocity variations. We suggest instead that the correlated topography we observe is caused by a garnet (as opposed to olivine) phase transition at 660 described by a positive Clapeyron slope, such that depression of the 660 is representative of a hot anomaly at depth. Observations of additional discontinuities in the upper mantle as well as observations of a deep ~1000km discontinuity also have the potential to shed light on the presence of a mantle plume at depth.

  20. Osmium-187 enrichment in some plumes: Evidence for core-mantle interaction?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Walker, R.J.; Morgan, J.W.; Horan, M.F.

    1995-01-01

    Calculations with data for asteroidal cores indicate that Earth's outer core may have a rhenium/osmium ratio at least 20 percent greater than that of the chondritic upper mantle, potentially leading to an outer core with an osmium-187/osmium-188 ratio at least 8 percent greater than that of chondrites. Because of the much greater abundance of osmium in the outer core relative to the mantle, even a small addition of metal to a plume ascending from the D??? layer would transfer the enriched isotopic signature to the mixture. Sources of certain plume-derived systems seem to have osmium-187/osmium-188 ratios 5 to 20 percent greater than that for chondrites, consistent with the ascent of a plume from the core-mantle boundary.

  1. Plumes in the mantle. [free air and isostatic gravity anomalies for geophysical interpretation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Khan, M. A.

    1973-01-01

    Free air and isostatic gravity anomalies for the purposes of geophysical interpretation are presented. Evidence for the existance of hotspots in the mantle is reviewed. The prosposed locations of these hotspots are not always associated with positive gravity anomalies. Theoretical analysis based on simplified flow models for the plumes indicates that unless the frictional viscosities are several orders of magnitude smaller than the present estimates of mantle viscosity or alternately, the vertical flows are reduced by about two orders of magnitude, the plume flow will generate implausibly high temperatures.

  2. The Emperor Seamounts: southward motion of the Hawaiian hotspot plume in Earth's mantle.

    PubMed

    Tarduno, John A; Duncan, Robert A; Scholl, David W; Cottrell, Rory D; Steinberger, Bernhard; Thordarson, Thorvaldur; Kerr, Bryan C; Neal, Clive R; Frey, Fred A; Torii, Masayuki; Carvallo, Claire

    2003-08-22

    The Hawaiian-Emperor hotspot track has a prominent bend, which has served as the basis for the theory that the Hawaiian hotspot, fixed in the deep mantle, traced a change in plate motion. However, paleomagnetic and radiometric age data from samples recovered by ocean drilling define an age-progressive paleolatitude history, indicating that the Emperor Seamount trend was principally formed by the rapid motion (over 40 millimeters per year) of the Hawaiian hotspot plume during Late Cretaceous to early-Tertiary times (81 to 47 million years ago). Evidence for motion of the Hawaiian plume affects models of mantle convection and plate tectonics, changing our understanding of terrestrial dynamics.

  3. Upper- and mid-mantle interaction between the Samoan plume and the Tonga-Kermadec slabs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chang, Sung-Joon; Ferreira, Ana M. G.; Faccenda, Manuele

    2016-02-01

    Mantle plumes are thought to play a key role in transferring heat from the core-mantle boundary to the lithosphere, where it can significantly influence plate tectonics. On impinging on the lithosphere at spreading ridges or in intra-plate settings, mantle plumes may generate hotspots, large igneous provinces and hence considerable dynamic topography. However, the active role of mantle plumes on subducting slabs remains poorly understood. Here we show that the stagnation at 660 km and fastest trench retreat of the Tonga slab in Southwestern Pacific are consistent with an interaction with the Samoan plume and the Hikurangi plateau. Our findings are based on comparisons between 3D anisotropic tomography images and 3D petrological-thermo-mechanical models, which self-consistently explain several unique features of the Fiji-Tonga region. We identify four possible slip systems of bridgmanite in the lower mantle that reconcile the observed seismic anisotropy beneath the Tonga slab (VSH>VSV) with thermo-mechanical calculations.

  4. Upper- and mid-mantle interaction between the Samoan plume and the Tonga-Kermadec slabs.

    PubMed

    Chang, Sung-Joon; Ferreira, Ana M G; Faccenda, Manuele

    2016-01-01

    Mantle plumes are thought to play a key role in transferring heat from the core-mantle boundary to the lithosphere, where it can significantly influence plate tectonics. On impinging on the lithosphere at spreading ridges or in intra-plate settings, mantle plumes may generate hotspots, large igneous provinces and hence considerable dynamic topography. However, the active role of mantle plumes on subducting slabs remains poorly understood. Here we show that the stagnation at 660 km and fastest trench retreat of the Tonga slab in Southwestern Pacific are consistent with an interaction with the Samoan plume and the Hikurangi plateau. Our findings are based on comparisons between 3D anisotropic tomography images and 3D petrological-thermo-mechanical models, which self-consistently explain several unique features of the Fiji-Tonga region. We identify four possible slip systems of bridgmanite in the lower mantle that reconcile the observed seismic anisotropy beneath the Tonga slab (V(SH)>V(SV)) with thermo-mechanical calculations. PMID:26924190

  5. Upper- and mid-mantle interaction between the Samoan plume and the Tonga–Kermadec slabs

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Sung-Joon; Ferreira, Ana M. G.; Faccenda, Manuele

    2016-01-01

    Mantle plumes are thought to play a key role in transferring heat from the core–mantle boundary to the lithosphere, where it can significantly influence plate tectonics. On impinging on the lithosphere at spreading ridges or in intra-plate settings, mantle plumes may generate hotspots, large igneous provinces and hence considerable dynamic topography. However, the active role of mantle plumes on subducting slabs remains poorly understood. Here we show that the stagnation at 660 km and fastest trench retreat of the Tonga slab in Southwestern Pacific are consistent with an interaction with the Samoan plume and the Hikurangi plateau. Our findings are based on comparisons between 3D anisotropic tomography images and 3D petrological-thermo-mechanical models, which self-consistently explain several unique features of the Fiji–Tonga region. We identify four possible slip systems of bridgmanite in the lower mantle that reconcile the observed seismic anisotropy beneath the Tonga slab (VSH>VSV) with thermo-mechanical calculations. PMID:26924190

  6. Upper- and mid-mantle interaction between the Samoan plume and the Tonga-Kermadec slabs.

    PubMed

    Chang, Sung-Joon; Ferreira, Ana M G; Faccenda, Manuele

    2016-02-29

    Mantle plumes are thought to play a key role in transferring heat from the core-mantle boundary to the lithosphere, where it can significantly influence plate tectonics. On impinging on the lithosphere at spreading ridges or in intra-plate settings, mantle plumes may generate hotspots, large igneous provinces and hence considerable dynamic topography. However, the active role of mantle plumes on subducting slabs remains poorly understood. Here we show that the stagnation at 660 km and fastest trench retreat of the Tonga slab in Southwestern Pacific are consistent with an interaction with the Samoan plume and the Hikurangi plateau. Our findings are based on comparisons between 3D anisotropic tomography images and 3D petrological-thermo-mechanical models, which self-consistently explain several unique features of the Fiji-Tonga region. We identify four possible slip systems of bridgmanite in the lower mantle that reconcile the observed seismic anisotropy beneath the Tonga slab (V(SH)>V(SV)) with thermo-mechanical calculations.

  7. Dynamics and geometry of thermal plumes in the laboratory and the mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cagney, N.; Newsome, W. H.; Lithgow-Bertelloni, C. R.

    2014-12-01

    Mantle plumes are thought to be the cause of hot spots and intraplate volcanism. Despite their importance in geophysics, our understanding of their dynamics is limited; the classical head-and-tail structure known from flow-visualisation work has not been observed in tomographic studies; significant uncertainty remains about the degree to which plumes entrain ambient material from the mid-mantle; and there is no accepted definition of the plume geometry. This work addresses these problems by providing quantitative, 3D measurements of the velocity fields surrounding a thermal plume using stereoscopic Particle-Image Velocimetry, as well as local temperature measurements. The Rayleigh number range in the experiments is 0.7 - 2 x 106. The concept of the 'vortex ring bubble' is introduced, which provides a quantitative means of defining the geometry of the plume. This definition is shown to be theoretically and experimentally robust, and is easily applied to numerical and experimental data. The definition allows the degree of entrainment of ambient material to be quantified. It is also shown that this boundary definition separates the fluid that has risen from the heater from the ambient material that has gained heat through conduction. In the Earth's mantle, the Prandtl number is very large (~1023) and the effects of conduction are negligible. Our new plume-geometry definition is shown to be a close approximation of the geometry of a plume that would occur in the mantle. This shape does not contain the classical head-and-tail structure - in contrast to the widespread conception of plumes - but in agreement with tomographic studies.

  8. On thermochemical mantle plumes with an intermediate thermal power that erupt on the Earth's surface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kirdyashkin, A. A.; Kirdyashkin, A. G.

    2016-03-01

    The relative plume thermal power Ka = N/ N 1 is used ( N is the thermal power transferred from the plume base to its conduit and N 1 is the thermal power transferred from the plume conduit into the surrounding mantle in the steady-state heat conduction regime). Thermochemical mantle plumes with small (Ka < 1.15) and intermediate (1.15 < Ka < 1.9) thermal powers are formed at the core-mantle boundary beneath cratons in the absence of horizontal free-convection mantle flows beneath them, or in the presence of weak horizontal mantle flows. Thermochemical plumes reach the Earth's surface when their relative thermal power is Ka > 1.15. The thermal and hydrodynamical structure of the plume conduit ascending from the core-mantle interface to the level from which the magmatic melt erupts on the Earth's surface is presented. The model of two-stage eruption of the melt from the plume conduit to the surface is considered. The critical height of the massif above the plume roof, at which the eruption conduit supplying magmatic melt to the surface forms, is determined. The volume of melt erupting through the eruption conduit to the surface is estimated. The dependence of depth Δ x from which the melt is transported to the surface on the plume diameter for a kinematic viscosity of ν = 0.5-2 m2/s is presented. In the case when the value Δ x is larger than the depth starting from which diamond is stable (150 km), the melt from the plume conduit can transport diamonds to the Earth's surface. The melt flow in the eruption conduit is considered as a turbulent flow in a cylindrical duct. The velocity of the melt flow in the eruption conduit and the time for the melt to be transported to the surface from a depth of Δ x = 150 km for a kinematic viscosity of the melt in the eruption conduit ν v = 0.01-1 m2/s are determined. Tangential stress on the eruption conduit sidewall is estimated in cases of melt flow both in smooth and rough conduits.

  9. Consequences of a Viscosity Peak in the Lower Mantle for the Evolution of Plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hansen, U.; Yuen, D. A.; Stein, C.

    2001-12-01

    Recent work has indicated the existence of a 'viscosity hill' situated in the lower mantle between 1800 and 2000 km. We have employed 2d and 3d numerical models to examine the dynamical consequences of such a hill in the high Rayleigh number regime. Most numerical models are based on the extended Boussinesq approximation, including the effects of viscous dissipation and adiabatic (de)compression. All models include a decrease of thermal expansivity with depth. The viscosity increase in the lower mantle was assumed to range between 150 and 1000. In order to delineate effects we separately run cases with a purely depth dependent viscosity profile and such with a superimposed temperature dependence of the viscosity.The 'viscosity hill' leads to a transient stage which closely resembles the 'doming regime' as found in thermo chemical convection. Further, the 'hill' acts similar to a phase transition. Plume branching occurs in the mid lower mantle as seemingly found in tomographic studies. The lower mantle is characterized by the presence of big plumes which experience branching during ascent. The most remarkable consequence of the hill is that plumes are significantly cooler in the upper mantle.

  10. The Elephants' Graveyard: Constraints from Mantle Plumes on the Fate of Subducted Slabs and Implications for the Style of Mantle Convection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lassiter, J. C.

    2007-12-01

    The style of mantle convection (e.g., layered- vs. whole-mantle convection) is one of the most hotly contested questions in the Geological Sciences. Geochemical arguments for and against mantle layering have largely focused on mass-balance evidence for the existence of "hidden" geochemical reservoirs. However, the size and location of such reservoirs are largely unconstrained, and most geochemical arguments for mantle layering are consistent with a depleted mantle comprising most of the mantle mass and a comparatively small volume of enriched, hidden material either within D" or within seismically anomalous "piles" beneath southern Africa and the South Pacific. The mass flux associated with subduction of oceanic lithosphere is large and plate subduction is an efficient driver of convective mixing in the mantle. Therefore, the depth to which oceanic lithosphere descends into the mantle is effectively the depth of the upper mantle in any layered mantle model. Numerous geochemical studies provide convincing evidence that many mantle plumes contain material which at one point resided close to the Earth's surface (e.g., recycled oceanic crust ± sediments, possibly subduction-modified mantle wedge material). Fluid dynamic models further reveal that only the central cores of mantle plumes are involved in melt generation. The presence of recycled material in the sources of many ocean island basalts therefore cannot be explained by entrainment of this material during plume ascent, but requires that recycled material resides within or immediately above the thermo-chemical boundary layer(s) that generates mantle plumes. More recent Os- isotope studies of mantle xenoliths from OIB settings reveal the presence not only of recycled crust in mantle plumes, but also ancient melt-depleted harzburgite interpreted to represent ancient recycled oceanic lithosphere [1]. Thus, there is increasing evidence that subducted slabs accumulate in the boundary layer(s) that provide the source

  11. Evolution of North Atlantic Passive Margins Controlled by the Iceland Mantle Plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parnell-Turner, R. E.; White, N. J.; Henstock, T.; Murton, B. J.; Jones, S. M.

    2015-12-01

    Evolution of North Atlantic passive margins has been profoundly influenced by the Iceland mantle plume over the past 60 Ma. Residual depth anomalies of oceanic lithosphere, long wavelength gravity anomalies and seismic tomographic models show that upwelling mantle material extends from Baffin Bay to Western Norway. At fringing passive margins such as Northwest Scotland, there is evidence for present-day dynamic support of the crust. The Iceland plume is bisected by the Reykjanes Ridge ridge, which acts as a tape-recorder of the temporal variability of the plume. We present regional seismic reflection profiles that traverse the oceanic basin between northwest Europe and Greenland. A diachronous pattern of V-shaped ridges and troughs are imaged beneath marine sediments, revealing a complete record of transient periodicity that can be traced continuously back to ~55 Myrs. This periodicity increases from ~3 to ~8 Ma with clear evidence for minor, but systematic, asymmetric crustal accretion. V-shaped ridges grow with time and reflect small (5-30°C) changes in mantle temperature, consistent with episodic generation of hot solitary waves triggered by growth of thermal boundary layer instabilities within the mantle. Our continuous record of convective activity suggests that the otherwise uniform thermal subsidence of sedimentary basins, which fringe the North Atlantic Ocean, has been punctuated by periods of variable dynamic topography. This record can explain a set of diverse observations from the geologic record. Paleogene unconformities in the Faroe-Shetland Basin, the punctuated deposition of contourite drifts and variations in deep-water current strength can all be explained by transient mantle plume behavior. These signals of convective activity should lead to improved insights into the fluid dynamics of the mantle, and into the evolution of volcanic passive margins.

  12. Delineating the Exmouth Mantle Plume (NW Australia) : Implications for the Origin of Volcanic Margins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rohrman, M. H.

    2014-12-01

    Denudation and magmatism are distinct characteristics of Large Igneous Provinces, such as the Northwest Australian volcanic margin. Unfortunately, its temporal and spatial extent is poorly defined. Here, I present a simple isostatic model relating denudation to plume induced lithospheric thinning and underplating to delineate the Late Jurassic/Early Cretaceous Exmouth mantle plume. This upwelling was centered on a highly extended and subsided continental fragment known as the subsea Sonne/Sonja Ridge area and includes the Cuvier Margin (CM) and Cape Range Fracture Zone (CRFZ). The region is characterized by ~3 km denudation and ~ 500 m tectonic uplift, with erosion products acting as provenance for the Early Cretaceous Lower Barrow delta. Partial melting of the plume generated an underplate, characterized as a high velocity body (HVB) on seismic data. Denudation analysis indicates that only ~40 % of the HVB is melt related, with the effective underplate ~ 4 km thick at the plume centre, decreasing in the outer regions. Widespread plume induced convective lithospheric thinning set the boundary conditions for subsequent extension related magmatism and breakup in the Valanginian, as recorded by subsidence analysis of exploration wells. Hot plume derived material flowed to regions under extension, initiating additional magmatism now observed as SDRs (Seaward Dipping Reflectors series), initially thick magmatic crust, followed by normal ocean spreading in the Hauterivian. After initial upwelling, the thermal plume can be traced in a western direction as a hotspot to the Quokka Rise in the mid Cretaceous, before terminating after 35 - 50 Ma of activity. These findings suggest that most volcanic margins are generated by plume upwellings that are relatively passive features, with uplift consisting of a combination of plume induced convective lithospheric thinning and underplating. Melt migration and mantle heating subsequently lower stresses and facilitate breakup.

  13. Lead isotopes reveal bilateral asymmetry and vertical continuity in the Hawaiian mantle plume.

    PubMed

    Abouchami, W; Hofmann, A W; Galer, S J G; Frey, F A; Eisele, J; Feigenson, M

    2005-04-14

    The two parallel chains of Hawaiian volcanoes ('Loa' and 'Kea') are known to have statistically different but overlapping radiogenic isotope characteristics. This has been explained by a model of a concentrically zoned mantle plume, where the Kea chain preferentially samples a more peripheral portion of the plume. Using high-precision lead isotope data for both centrally and peripherally located volcanoes, we show here that the two trends have very little compositional overlap and instead reveal bilateral, non-concentric plume zones, probably derived from the plume source in the mantle. On a smaller scale, along the Kea chain, there are isotopic differences between the youngest lavas from the Mauna Kea and Kilauea volcanoes, but the 550-thousand-year-old Mauna Kea lavas are isotopically identical to Kilauea lavas, consistent with Mauna Kea's position relative to the plume, which was then similar to that of present-day Kilauea. We therefore conclude that narrow (less than 50 kilometres wide) compositional streaks, as well as the larger-scale bilateral zonation, are vertically continuous over tens to hundreds of kilometres within the plume.

  14. Lead isotopes reveal bilateral asymmetry and vertical continuity in the Hawaiian mantle plume.

    PubMed

    Abouchami, W; Hofmann, A W; Galer, S J G; Frey, F A; Eisele, J; Feigenson, M

    2005-04-14

    The two parallel chains of Hawaiian volcanoes ('Loa' and 'Kea') are known to have statistically different but overlapping radiogenic isotope characteristics. This has been explained by a model of a concentrically zoned mantle plume, where the Kea chain preferentially samples a more peripheral portion of the plume. Using high-precision lead isotope data for both centrally and peripherally located volcanoes, we show here that the two trends have very little compositional overlap and instead reveal bilateral, non-concentric plume zones, probably derived from the plume source in the mantle. On a smaller scale, along the Kea chain, there are isotopic differences between the youngest lavas from the Mauna Kea and Kilauea volcanoes, but the 550-thousand-year-old Mauna Kea lavas are isotopically identical to Kilauea lavas, consistent with Mauna Kea's position relative to the plume, which was then similar to that of present-day Kilauea. We therefore conclude that narrow (less than 50 kilometres wide) compositional streaks, as well as the larger-scale bilateral zonation, are vertically continuous over tens to hundreds of kilometres within the plume. PMID:15829954

  15. Hunting for the Tristan plume - An upper mantle tomography around the volcanic island Tristan da Cunha

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schlömer, Antje; Geissler, Wolfram H.; Jokat, Wilfried; Jegen, Marion

    2016-04-01

    Tristan da Cunha is a volcanic island in the South Atlantic close to the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. It is part of an area consisting of widely scattered seamounts and small islands at the western and youngest end of the aseismic Walvis Ridge. Tristan da Cunha together with the Walvis Ridge represents the classical example of a mantle plume track, because of the connection to the Cretaceous Etendeka flood basalt province in NW Namibia. The genesis of the island has so far remained enigmatic. It is hotly debated, if Tristan da Cunha sits actually above a deep mantle plume or if it is only originated by upwelling material from weak (leaky) fracture zones. It also has to be clarified if there are any indications for a plume-ridge interaction. Geochemical investigations have shown complex compositions of magmatic samples from Tristan da Cunha, which could be interpreted as a mixing of plume-derived melts and depleted upper mantle sources. To improve our understanding about the origin of Tristan and to test the mantle plume hypothesis, we deployed 24 broadband ocean-bottom seismometers and 2 seismological land stations around and on the island during an expedition in January 2012 with the German research vessel Maria S. Merian. After acquiring continuous seismological data for almost one year, the seismometers were recovered in early January 2013. We cross-correlated the arrival times of teleseismic P and PKP phases to perform a finite-frequency tomography of the upper mantle beneath the study area. Here we show the 3D mantle structure in terms of velocity variations: We do not image a "classical" plume-like structure directly beneath Tristan da Cunha, but we observe regions of low velocities at the edges of our array that we relate to local mantle upwelling from potentially deeper sources. Additionally we discuss local seismicity within the Tristan da Cunha region, which show processes along the nearby mid-ocean ridge and transform faults. Furthermore, the local seismicity

  16. Mantle plume influence on the Neogene uplift and extension of the US western Cordillera?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Parsons, T.; Thompson, G.A.; Sleep, N.H.

    1994-01-01

    Despite its highly extended and thinned crust, much of the western Cordillera in the United States is elevated more than 1km above sea level. Therefore, this region cannot be thought of as thick crust floating isostatically in a uniform mantle; rather, the lithospheric mantle and/or the upper asthenosphere must vary in thickness or density across the region. Utilizing crustal thickness and density constraints, the residual mass defcicit that must occur in the mantle lithosphere and asthenosphere beneath the western Cordillera was modelled. A major hot spot broke out during a complex series of Cenozoic tectonic events that included lithospheric thickening, back-arc extension, and transition from subduction to a transform plate boundary. It is suggested that many of the characteristics that make the western Cordillera unique among extensional provinces can be attributed to the mantle plume that created the Yellowstone hot spot. -Authors

  17. Enhanced convection and fast plumes in the lower mantle induced by the spin transition in ferropericlase.

    SciTech Connect

    Bower, D. J.; Gurnis, M.; Jackson, J. M.; Sturhahn, W.; X-Ray Science Division; California Inst. of Tech.

    2009-05-28

    Using a numerical model we explore the consequences of the intrinsic density change ({Delta}{rho}/{rho} {approx} 2-4%) caused by the Fe{sup 2+} spin transition in ferropericlase on the style and vigor of mantle convection. The effective Clapeyron slope of the transition from high to low spin is strongly positive in pressure-temperature space and broadens with high temperature. This introduces a net spin-state driving density difference for both upwellings and downwellings. In 2-D cylindrical geometry spin-buoyancy dominantly enhances the positive thermal buoyancy of plumes. Although the additional buoyancy does not fundamentally alter large-scale dynamics, the Nusselt number increases by 5-10%, and vertical velocities by 10-40% in the lower mantle. Advective heat transport is more effective and temperatures in the core-mantle boundary region are reduced by up to 12%. Our findings are relevant to the stability of lowermost mantle structures.

  18. A new model for the development of the active Afar volcanic margin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pik, Raphaël; Stab, Martin; Bellahsen, Nicolas; Leroy, Sylvie

    2016-04-01

    response to the deformation of the lithosphere, through a petrological and geochemical study of the pre- to syn-rift lavas and concluded that the lithospheric mantle experienced the combined effect of post-plume cooling, but also thinning during the Miocene. This is accompanied by the early channelization of the plume head into narrower zones, which helped focus extension at the future volcanic margins location. The anomalous mantle potential temperature increased during the very last localization phase (< 1 Ma), which leads us to argue in favor of the focussed activity of a plume stem below the volcanic margin, instead of purely passive adiabatic decompression. Our new interpretation of the regional isotopic signatures of lavas depicts a clear framework of the Afar plume and lithospheric mantle relationships to on going extension and segmentation of these margins, and allow us to propose new contrasted models for their development.

  19. Midcontinent Rift and Remnants of Initiating Mantle Plume Imaged With Magnetotellurics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bowles-martinez, E.; Schultz, A.

    2015-12-01

    Geologic evidence has long suggested that the Midcontinent Rift (MCR) was initiated by a mantle plume 1.1 Ga in the western Lake Superior region. EarthScope magnetotelluric data has been inverted to create a 3D resistivity model that shows remnants of the plume to depths of at least 150 km. The mantle plume remnants are imaged as a body of highly conductive material in the lithosphere. It is focused below western Lake Superior and northwestern Wisconsin, and elongated in a NW-SE direction, consistent with plate motion vectors. Recent seismic velocity models from EarthScope data also show an anomaly at this location. The presence of a plume after so much time has passed invites many questions regarding the long-term stability of conductive materials, the thickness of the lithosphere, and the stability of sub-craton mantle over long time periods. The resistivity model also shows features defining the length of the MCR as well as the Grenville orogeny. New data being collected this summer is incorporated into the model, extending it southeast across Grenville.

  20. Processes accompanying of mantle plume emplacement into continental lithosphere: Evidence from NW Arabian plate, Western Syria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharkov, E. V.

    2015-12-01

    Lower crustal xenoliths occurred in the Middle Cretaceous lamprophyre diatremes in Jabel Ansaria (Western Syria) (Sharkov et al., 1992). They are represented mainly garnet granulites and eclogite-like rocks, which underwent by deformations and retrograde metamorphism, and younger fresh pegmatoid garnet-kaersutite-clinopyroxene (Al-Ti augite) rocks; mantle peridotites are absent in these populations. According to mineralogical geothermobarometers, forming of garnet-granulite suite rocks occurred under pressure 13.5-15.4 kbar (depths 45-54 kn) and temperature 965-1115oC. At the same time, among populations of mantle xenoliths in the Late Cenozoic platobasalts of the region, quite the contrary, lower crustal xenoliths are absent, however, predominated spinel lherzolites (fragments of upper cooled rim of a plume head), derived from the close depths (30-40 km: Sharkov, Bogatikov, 2015). From this follows that ancient continental crust was existed here even in the Middle Cretaceous, but in the Late Cenozoic was removed by extended mantle plume head; at that upper sialic crust was not involved in geomechanic processes, because Precambrian metamorphic rocks survived as a basement for Cambrian to Cenozoic sedimentary cover of Arabian platform. In other words, though cardinal rebuilding of deep-seated structure of the region occurred in the Late Cenozoic but it did not affect on the upper shell of the ancient lithosphere. Because composition of mantle xenolithis in basalts is practically similar worldwide, we suggest that deep-seated processes are analogous also. As emplacement of the mantle plume heads accompanied by powerful basaltic magmatism, very likely that range of lower (mafic) continental crust existence is very convenient for extension of plume heads and their adiabatic melting. If such level, because of whatever reasons, was not reached, melting was limited but appeared excess of volatile matters which led to forming of lamprophyre or even kimberlite.

  1. Grand Comore Island: A well-constrained “low 3He/4He” mantle plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Class, Cornelia; Goldstein, Steven L.; Stute, Martin; Kurz, Mark D.; Schlosser, Peter

    2005-05-01

    We report He isotope ( 3He/ 4He) variations in samples from alkali basaltic and basanitic lava flows from Grande Comore Island complemented by existing [1,2] [C. Class, S.L. Goldstein, Plume-lithosphere interactions in the ocean basins: constraints from the source mineralogy. Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., 150 (1997) 245-260, C. Class, S.L. Goldstein, R. Altherr, P. Bachèchlery, The process of plume-lithosphere interaction in the ocean basins—the case of Grande Comore. J. Petrol., 39 (5) (1998) 881-903] and new Sr-Nd-Pb isotope ratios and major and trace element abundances. He isotope data in samples from Tristan da Cunha and Gough islands and the Huri Hills in Kenya are reported also. Grande Comore 3He/ 4He ratios vary between 5.05 and 7.08 RA ( 4He/ 3He ≈ 141,000-101,000). Chemical and Sr-Nd-Pb isotopic variations of Grande Comore lavas were previously shown to reflect melts derived from the deep mantle plume and the shallow lithospheric mantle [1-3] [C. Class, S.L. Goldstein, Plume-lithosphere interactions in the ocean basins: constraints from the source mineralogy. Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., 150 (1997) 245-260, C. Class, S.L. Goldstein, R. Altherr, P. Bachèchlery, The process of plume-lithosphere interaction in the ocean basins-the case of Grande Comore. J. Petrol., 39 (5) (1998) 881-903, C. Claude-Ivanaj, B. Bourdon, C.J. Allègre, Ra-Th-Sr isotope systematics in Grande Comore Island: a case study of plume-lithosphere interaction. Earth Planet. Sci. Lett. 164 (1998) 99-117]. The lithosphere-dominated end-member (La Grille volcano) shows uniform 3He/ 4He ratios within error of 6.75-7.08 RA ( 4He/ 3He ≈ 106,000-101,000) over a range of [He] = 36-428 × 10 - 9 ccSTP/g. The plume end-member (of the Karthala volcano suite), as constrained by Sr, Nd, Pb isotope ratios, shows uniformly lower 3He/ 4He ratios with 5.05-5.41 RA ( 4He/ 3He ≈ 141,000-132,000) over a range of [He] = 11-136 × 10 - 9 ccSTP/g. All samples show good correlations between Sr-Nd-He isotope

  2. Long lasting epeirogenic uplift from mantle plumes and the origin of the Southern African Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nyblade, Andrew A.; Sleep, Norman H.

    2003-12-01

    We investigate under what conditions the present-day long wavelength anomalous elevation (˜500 m) of the southern African Plateau can be attributed to Mesozoic plume events. The anomalous, long wavelength topography of the southern African Plateau cannot be easily explained by recent heating of the upper mantle, as opposed to other areas of the African Superswell, and geomorphological studies provide few hard constraints on the timing of the uplift. A Mesozoic origin for the plateau uplift is attractive in that southern Africa experienced several large magmatic events in the Mesozoic. We formulate numerical and scaling models to investigate if plume material ponded beneath cratonic lithosphere in the Mesozoic could produce 500 m of present-day elevation. We find that starting plume heads are ineffective at producing much long lasting uplift because the material spreads into a thin layer, tens of km thick. The ponded plume material also suppresses secondary convection by having a stable boundary at its base. Over time, heat continues to flow out of the top of the lithosphere, and a net imbalance of heat flow in the lithosphere develops, resulting in subsidence. Even after the plume material has cooled to the temperature of the mantle adiabat, secondary convection supplies less heat to the lithosphere than is lost upward by conduction. The cratonic lithosphere returns to its original thermal structure on a timescale of less than 200 m.y. Even two mantle starting plume heads, one at the time of Karoo volcanism (ca.183 Ma) and the other at the time of kimberlite eruption (ca. 80-90 Ma) in our models, cannot produce much (<200 m) of the present-day anomalous elevation. However, significant uplift can be generated by plume tails, provided they linger beneath the lithosphere for ˜25-30 m.y., and if the uplift effects of Mesozoic plume heads and tails are considered together, then it is possible to account for ˜500 m of present-day elevation. Consequently, a Mesozoic

  3. Modulation of mantle plumes and heat flow at the core mantle boundary by plate-scale flow: results from laboratory experiments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gonnermann, Helge M.; Jellinek, A. Mark; Richards, Mark A.; Manga, Michael

    2004-09-01

    We report results from analog laboratory experiments, in which a large-scale flow is imposed upon natural convection from a hot boundary layer at the base of a large tank of corn syrup. The experiments show that the subdivision of the convective flow into four regions provides a reasonable conceptual framework for interpreting the effects of large-scale flow on plumes. Region I includes the area of the hot thermal boundary layer (TBL) that is thinned by the large-scale flow, thereby suppressing plumes. Region II encompasses the critically unstable boundary layer where plumes form. Region III is the area above the boundary layer that is devoid of plumes. Region IV comprises the area of hot upwelling and plume conduits. Quantitative analysis of our experiments results in a scaling law for heat flux from the hot boundary and for the spatial extent of plume suppression. When applied to the Earth's core-mantle boundary (CMB), our results suggest that large-scale mantle flow, due to sinking lithospheric plates, can locally thin the TBL and suppress plume formation over large fractions of the CMB. Approximately 30% of heat flow from the core may be due to increased heat flux from plate-scale flow. Furthermore, CMB heat flux is non-uniformly distributed along the CMB, with large areas where heat flux is increased on average by a factor of 2. As a consequence, the convective flow pattern in the outer core may be affected by CMB heat-flux heterogeneity and sensitive to changes in plate-scale mantle flow. Because of plume suppression and 'focusing' of hot mantle from the CMB into zones of upwelling flow, plume conduits (hotspots) are expected to be spatially associated with lower-mantle regions of low seismic velocities, inferred as hot upwelling mantle flow.

  4. Daly Lecture: Geochemical Insights into Mantle Geodynamics and Plume Structure (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weis, D. A.

    2010-12-01

    It is almost 50 years since the first documentation of mantle heterogeneity through the study of ocean island basalts (OIB) [1]. The origin, scale and source of these heterogeneities have been the subject of debate since then. One of the most common approaches in the study of mantle heterogeneities is to analyze the geochemistry of oceanic basalts brought to the surface by mantle plumes. The composition of these ocean island basalts is usually different from those extruded at mid-ocean ridges (MORB), even if some of the post-shield/rejuvenated volcanism of some islands present depleted isotopic signatures. Improved analytical precision for radiogenic isotopes, combined with statistical data treatment, allow for more detailed investigations into the geochemical variations of basalts related to hotspots and mantle plumes and for modeling of the shallow and deep plume structure. Identification of two clear geochemical trends (Loa and Kea) among Hawaiian volcanoes [2, 3] in all isotope systems [4], together with the recurrence of similar isotopic signatures at >350 kyr intervals, have implications for the dynamics and internal structure of the Hawaiian mantle plume conduit [5]. In this lecture, I will present a compilation of recent isotopic data for samples from the shield, post-shield/late shield and rejuvenated stages on Hawaiian volcanoes, focusing specifically on high-precision Pb isotopic data (MC-ICP-MS or DS, TS TIMS) and integrated with Sr, Nd and Hf isotopes. The Hawaiian mantle plume represents >80 Myr of volcanic activity in a pure oceanic setting and corresponds to a high plume flux. All isotopic systems indicate source differences for Loa- and Kea-trend volcanoes that are maintained throughout the ~1 Myr activity of each volcano and that extend back in time on all the Hawaiian Islands (to ~5 Ma). The Loa-trend source is more heterogeneous in all isotopic systems by a factor of ~1.5 than the Kea-trend source. There are also different geochemical trends

  5. Geothermal constraints on Emeishan mantle plume magmatism: paleotemperature reconstruction of the Sichuan Basin, SW China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Chuanqing; Hu, Shengbiao; Qiu, Nansheng; Jiang, Qiang; Rao, Song; Liu, Shuai

    2016-10-01

    The Middle-Late Permian Emeishan Large Igneous Province (ELIP) in southwestern China represents a classic example of a mantle plume origin. To constrain the thermal regime of the ELIP and contemporaneous magmatic activity in the northeastern Sichuan Basin, maximum paleotemperature profiles of deep boreholes were reconstructed using vitrinite reflectance (Ro) and apatite fission track data. Two heating patterns were identified: (1) heating of the overlying lithosphere by magma storage regions and/or magmatic activity related to the mantle plume, which resulted in a relatively strong geothermal field and (2) direct heating of country rock by stock or basalt. Borehole Ro data and reconstructed maximum paleotemperature profiles near the ELIP exhibit abrupt tectonothermal unconformities between the Middle and Late Permian. The profiles in the lower subsections (i.e., pre-Middle Permian) exhibited significantly higher gradients than those in the upper subsections. Distal to the basalt province, high paleo-geotemperatures (hereafter, paleotemperatures) were inferred, despite deformation of the paleogeothermal curve due to deep faults and igneous rocks within the boreholes. In contrast, Ro profiles from boreholes without igneous rocks (i.e., Late Permian) contained no break at the unconformity. Paleotemperature gradients of the upper and the lower subsections and erosion at the Middle/Late Permian unconformity revealed variations in the thermal regime. The inferred spatial distribution of the paleothermal regime and the erosion magnitudes record the magmatic and tectonic-thermal response to the Emeishan mantle plume.

  6. Rapid Mantle Ascent Rates Beneath Brazil: Diamond Bullets from a Smoking Plume?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walter, M. J.; Frost, D. J.

    2010-12-01

    The concept of upwelling plumes of mantle material is, for many, integral to plate tectonics theory. However, proving that plumes exist has been frustrating, and a growing cadre of geoscientists either deny their existence, or remain uncomfortably agnostic. To the uninitiated, seismic tomography can seem a game of now-you-see-it, now-you-don’t, and igneous petrology a malarial fever of now-it's-hot, now-it's-cold. We suggest that diamonds and their mineral inclusions from Juina, Brazil, may provide direct evidence for rapid mantle ascent caused by an upwelling plume. Cretaceous kimberlites in Juina are famous for producing diamonds with inclusions that originated at transition zone and lower mantle depths [1]. Many of these sublithospheric inclusions show evidence of un-mixing of original single-phase minerals into composite inclusions during ascent in the mantle unrelated to kimberlite eruption [2,3]. What is not known is the timeframe or causality of mantle ascent. Diamonds are notoriously hard to date, but Re/Os dates of sulfide inclusions in lithospheric diamonds are generally Early Proterozoic or older, whereas host kimberlites are typically much younger [4]. If the Brazilian diamonds were also ancient, then un-mixing could have been the result of a couple billion years of passive upward migration in the mantle, unrelated to anything so torrid as a mantle plume. Diamond J1 from the Collier4 kimberlite has a composite CaTiO3+CaSiO3 inclusion in a core growth zone (originally perovskite) and a majoritic garnet inclusion in a rim zone. On the basis of excess silica in its formula, the garnet crystallized at 6-7 GPa (about 200 km), consistent with the un-mixing pressure obtained from the perovskite [5]. Experimental phase relations show that the original single-phase perovskite must have formed deeper, between about 300 and 700 km [5]. Thus, diamond J1 exhibits polybaric growth, having ascended some 100 to 500 km during its growth history. Many other mineral

  7. Seismic evidence for an Iceland thermo-chemical plume in the Earth's lowermost mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Yumei; Wen, Lianxing; Capdeville, Yann; Zhao, Liang

    2015-05-01

    We constrain the geographic extent, geometry and velocity structure of the seismic anomaly near the Earth's core-mantle boundary (CMB) beneath Iceland, based on travel time and three-dimensional waveform modeling of the seismic data sampling the lowermost mantle beneath Iceland. Our analysis suggests a mushroom-shaped low velocity anomaly situated in the lowermost mantle beneath Iceland surrounded by a high velocity province. The best fitting mushroom-shaped model is 600 km high and has a stem with a radius of 350 km in the lowermost 250 km of the mantle and a cap with increasing radii from 550 km at 250 km above the CMB to 650 km at 600 km above the CMB. The shear velocity structure varies from 0% at the top to - 3% at 250 km above the CMB and to - 6% at the CMB. These inferred seismic features, in combination with the previous evidence of existence of ultra-low velocity zones at the base of the mantle beneath the region, suggest that Iceland represents a thermo-chemical plume generated by interaction of downwelling and a localized chemical anomaly at the base of the mantle.

  8. Ridge push, mantle plumes and the speed of the Indian plate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eagles, Graeme; Wibisono, Affelia D.

    2013-08-01

    The buoyancy of lithospheric slabs in subduction zones is widely thought to dominate the torques driving plate tectonics. In late Cretaceous and early Paleogene times, the Indian plate moved more rapidly over the mantle than freely subducting slabs sink within it. This signal event has been attributed to arrival of the Deccan-Réunion mantle plume beneath the plate, but it is unknown in which proportions the plume acted to alter the balance of existing plate driving torques and to introduce torques of its own. Our plate kinematic analysis of the Mascarene Basin yields a detailed Indian plate motion history for the period 89-60 Ma. Plate speed initially increases steadily until a pronounced acceleration in the period 68-64 Ma, after which it abruptly returns to values much like those beforehand. This pattern is unlike that suggested to result from the direct introduction of driving forces by the arrival of a thermal plume at the base of the plate. A simple analysis of the gravitational force related to the Indian plate's thickening away from its boundary with the African plate suggests instead that the sudden acceleration and deceleration may be related to uplift of part of that boundary during a period when it was located over the plume head. In this instance, torques related to plate accretion and subduction may have contributed in similar proportions to drive plate motion.

  9. RHUM-RUM investigates La Réunion mantle plume from crust to core

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sigloch, K.; Barruol, G.

    2012-12-01

    RHUM-RUM (Réunion Hotspot and Upper Mantle - Réunions Unterer Mantel) is a French-German passive seismic experiment designed to image an oceanic mantle plume - or lack of plume - from crust to core beneath La Réunion Island, and to understand these results in terms of material, heat flow and plume dynamics. La Réunion hotspot is one of the most active volcanoes in the world, and its hotspot track leads unambiguously to the Deccan Traps of India, one of the largest flood basalt provinces on Earth, which erupted 65 Ma ago. The genesis and the origin at depth of the mantle upwelling and of the hotspot are still very controversial. In the RHUM-RUM project, 57 German and French ocean-bottom seismometers (OBS) are deployed over an area of 2000 km x 2000 km2 centered on La Réunion Island, using the "Marion Dufresne" and "Meteor" vessels. The one-year OBS deployment (Oct. 2012 - Oct. 2013) will be augmented by terrestrial deployments in the Iles Eparses in the Mozambique Channel, in Madagascar, Seychelles, Mauritius, Rodrigues and La Réunion islands. A significant number of OBS will be also distributed along the Central and South West Indian Ridges to image the lower-mantle beneath the hotspot, but also to provide independent opportunity for the study of these slow to ultra-slow ridges and of possible plume-ridge interactions. RHUM-RUM aims to characterize the vertically ascending flow in the plume conduit, as well as any lateral flow spreading into the asthenosphere beneath the western Indian Ocean. We want to establish the origin of the heat source that has been fueling this powerful hotspot, by answering the following questions: Is there a direct, isolated conduit into the deepest mantle, which sources its heat and material from the core-mantle boundary? Is there a plume connection to the African superswell at mid-mantle depths? Might the volcanism reflect merely an upper mantle instability? RHUM-RUM also aims at studying the hotspot's interaction with the

  10. RHUM-RUM investigates La Réunion mantle plume from crust to core

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sigloch, Karin; Barruol, Guilhem

    2013-04-01

    RHUM-RUM (Réunion Hotspot and Upper Mantle - Réunions Unterer Mantel) is a French-German passive seismic experiment designed to image an oceanic mantle plume - or lack of plume - from crust to core beneath La Réunion Island, and to understand these results in terms of material, heat flow and plume dynamics. La Réunion hotspot is one of the most active volcanoes in the world, and its hotspot track leads unambiguously to the Deccan Traps of India, one of the largest flood basalt provinces on Earth, which erupted 65 Ma ago. The genesis and the origin at depth of the mantle upwelling and of the hotspot are still very controversial. In the RHUM-RUM project, 57 German and French ocean-bottom seismometers (OBS) are deployed over an area of 2000 km x 2000 km2 centered on La Réunion Island, using the "Marion Dufresne" and "Meteor" vessels. The one-year OBS deployment (Oct. 2012 - Oct. 2013) will be augmented by terrestrial deployments in the Iles Eparses in the Mozambique Channel, in Madagascar, Seychelles, Mauritius, Rodrigues and La Réunion islands. A significant number of OBS will be also distributed along the Central and South West Indian Ridges to image the lower-mantle beneath the hotspot, but also to provide independent opportunity for the study of these slow to ultra-slow ridges and of possible plume-ridge interactions. RHUM-RUM aims to characterize the vertically ascending flow in the plume conduit, as well as any lateral flow spreading into the asthenosphere beneath the western Indian Ocean. We want to establish the origin of the heat source that has been fueling this powerful hotspot, by answering the following questions: Is there a direct, isolated conduit into the deepest mantle, which sources its heat and material from the core-mantle boundary? Is there a plume connection to the African superswell at mid-mantle depths? Might the volcanism reflect merely an upper mantle instability? RHUM-RUM also aims at studying the hotspot's interaction with the

  11. Mantle Plume Temperature Variations Immediately Following Continental Breakup of the Northern North Atlantic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parkin, C. J.; White, R. S.; Kusznir, N.

    2004-12-01

    The amount of melt generated by mantle decompression beneath an oceanic spreading centre and hence the oceanic crustal thickness is controlled in part by the temperature of the mantle. By measuring the thickness of the oceanic crust formed immediately after breakup of the northern North Atlantic we are able to deduce the maximum elevated mantle temperatures caused by the presence of the Iceland Mantle Plume. Crustal thickness variations are caused by temporal variations in the mantle plume temperature: at the present Reykjanes Ridge spreading centre the plume temperature pulses on a 3-5 Myr timescale with temperature variations of c.30K. We show results from the oceanic end of the Hatton-Rockall iSIMM (integrated Seismic Imaging and Modelling of Margins) project, where for this study, 45 OBS (Ocean Bottom Seismometers) were deployed across the oceanic crust of the Iceland Basin adjacent to the rifted margin. The OBS were deployed perpendicular to the margin extending 200km oceanwards from the continent-ocean boundary at Hatton bank and along a 90km strike line on the oceanic crust. OBS spacing was 10km across the oceanic crust with a denser spacing of 4km adjacent to the margin. The profile spans magnetic anomalies 18-24 (39-56 Ma) with the strike line parallel and coincident with magnetic anomaly 20 (44Ma). The seismic source was a 101.4 Ltr (6340 cu inch), low frequency, broadband airgun source designed to optimise seismic penetration at large offsets. Magnetics, bathymetry and gravity data were acquired as well as seismic reflection data using a 3km multichannel streamer (MCS). Processing of MCS reflection data has allowed accurate determination of the sediment velocity structure covering the igneous oceanic layers. Incorporation of sediment structure into a joint reflection and refraction tomographic inversion of the wide-angle OBS data has enabled us to map crustal thickness across the oceanic crust. Results span the first 17Myr of formation of the northern

  12. Anomalous sulphur isotopes in plume lavas reveal deep mantle storage of Archaean crust.

    PubMed

    Cabral, Rita A; Jackson, Matthew G; Rose-Koga, Estelle F; Koga, Kenneth T; Whitehouse, Martin J; Antonelli, Michael A; Farquhar, James; Day, James M D; Hauri, Erik H

    2013-04-25

    Basaltic lavas erupted at some oceanic intraplate hotspot volcanoes are thought to sample ancient subducted crustal materials. However, the residence time of these subducted materials in the mantle is uncertain and model-dependent, and compelling evidence for their return to the surface in regions of mantle upwelling beneath hotspots is lacking. Here we report anomalous sulphur isotope signatures indicating mass-independent fractionation (MIF) in olivine-hosted sulphides from 20-million-year-old ocean island basalts from Mangaia, Cook Islands (Polynesia), which have been suggested to sample recycled oceanic crust. Terrestrial MIF sulphur isotope signatures (in which the amount of fractionation does not scale in proportion with the difference in the masses of the isotopes) were generated exclusively through atmospheric photochemical reactions until about 2.45 billion years ago. Therefore, the discovery of MIF sulphur in these young plume lavas suggests that sulphur--probably derived from hydrothermally altered oceanic crust--was subducted into the mantle before 2.45 billion years ago and recycled into the mantle source of Mangaia lavas. These new data provide evidence for ancient materials, with negative Δ(33)S values, in the mantle source for Mangaia lavas. Our data also complement evidence for recycling of the sulphur content of ancient sedimentary materials to the subcontinental lithospheric mantle that has been identified in diamond-hosted sulphide inclusions. This Archaean age for recycled oceanic crust also provides key constraints on the length of time that subducted crustal material can survive in the mantle, and on the timescales of mantle convection from subduction to upwelling beneath hotspots. PMID:23619695

  13. Regional uplift associated with continental large igneous provinces: The roles of mantle plumes and the lithosphere

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Saunders, A.D.; Jones, S.M.; Morgan, L.A.; Pierce, K.L.; Widdowson, M.; Xu, Y.G.

    2007-01-01

    Provinces. In these examples, rifting is not a requirement for onset of LIP magmatism but melting rates are significantly increased when rifting occurs. Models that attempt to explain emplacement of these five LIPs without hot mantle supplied by mantle plumes often have difficulties in explaining the observations of surface uplift, rifting and magmatism. For example, small-scale convection related to craton or rift boundaries (edge-driven convection) cannot easily explain widespread (1000??km scale) transient surface uplift (Emeishan, Deccan, North Atlantic), and upper mantle convection initiated by differential incubation beneath cratons (the hotcell model) is at odds with rapid onset of surface uplift (Emeishan, North Atlantic). The start-up plume concept is still the most parsimonious way of explaining the observations presented here. However, observations of surface uplift cannot directly constrain the depth of origin of the hot mantle in a plume head. The short time interval between onset of transient surface uplift and magmatism in the North Atlantic and Emeishan means that the associated starting plume heads were probably not large (??? 1000??km diameter) roughly spherical diapirs and are likely to have formed narrow (??? 100??km radius) upwelling jets, with hot mantle then spreading rapidly outward within the asthenosphere. In cases where rifting post-dates magmatism (N Atlantic Phase 1) or where the degree of lithospheric extension may not have been great (Siberia), a secondary mechanism of lithospheric thinning, such as gravitational instability or delamination of the lower lithosphere, may be required to allow hot mantle to decompress sufficiently to explain the observed volume of magma with a shallow melting geochemical signature. Any such additional thinning mechanisms are probably a direct consequence of plume head emplacement. ?? 2007 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Abnormal high surface heat flow caused by the Emeishan mantle plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiang, Qiang; Qiu, Nansheng; Zhu, Chuanqing

    2016-04-01

    It is commonly believed that increase of heat flow caused by a mantle plume is small and transient. Seafloor heat flow data near the Hawaiian hotspot and the Iceland are comparable to that for oceanic lithosphere elsewhere. Numerical modeling of the thermal effect of the Parana large igneous province shows that the added heat flow at the surface caused by the magmatic underplating is less than 5mW/m2. However, the thermal effect of Emeishan mantle plume (EMP) may cause the surface hear-flow abnormally high. The Middle-Late Emeishan mantle plume is located in the western Yangtze Craton. The Sichuan basin, to the northeast of the EMP, is a superimposed basin composed of Paleozoic marine carbonate rocks and Mesozoic-Cenozoic terrestrial clastic rocks. The vitrinite reflectance (Ro) data as a paleogeothermal indicator records an apparent change of thermal regime of the Sichuan basin. The Ro profiles from boreholes and outcrops which are close to the center of the basalt province exhibit a 'dog-leg' style at the unconformity between the Middle and Upper Permian, and they show significantly higher gradients in the lower subsection (pre-Middle Permian) than the Upper subsection (Upper Permian to Mesozoic). Thermal history inversion based on these Ro data shows that the lower subsection experienced a heat flow peak much higher than that of the upper subsection. The abnormal heat flow in the Sichuan basin is consistent with the EMP in temporal and spatial distribution. The high-temperature magmas from deep mantle brought heat to the base of the lithosphere, and then large amount of heat was conducted upwards, resulting in the abnormal high surface heat flow.

  15. Seismological constraints on a possible plume root at the core-mantle boundary.

    PubMed

    Rost, Sebastian; Garnero, Edward J; Williams, Quentin; Manga, Michael

    2005-06-01

    Recent seismological discoveries have indicated that the Earth's core-mantle boundary is far more complex than a simple boundary between the molten outer core and the silicate mantle. Instead, its structural complexities probably rival those of the Earth's crust. Some regions of the lowermost mantle have been observed to have seismic wave speed reductions of at least 10 per cent, which appear not to be global in extent. Here we present robust evidence for an 8.5-km-thick and approximately 50-km-wide pocket of dense, partially molten material at the core-mantle boundary east of Australia. Array analyses of an anomalous precursor to the reflected seismic wave ScP reveal compressional and shear-wave velocity reductions of 8 and 25 per cent, respectively, and a 10 per cent increase in density of the partially molten aggregate. Seismological data are incompatible with a basal layer composed of pure melt, and thus require a mechanism to prevent downward percolation of dense melt within the layer. This may be possible by trapping of melt by cumulus crystal growth following melt drainage from an anomalously hot overlying region of the lowermost mantle. This magmatic evolution and the resulting cumulate structure seem to be associated with overlying thermal instabilities, and thus may mark a root zone of an upwelling plume.

  16. Seismic Anisotropy near Hawaii - Evidence for plume-related mantle flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Laske, Gabi; Marzen, Rachel

    2016-04-01

    During the Hawaiian PLUME (Plume-Lithosphere Undersea Melt Experiment) deployment, we collected continuous seismic data at ten land stations and nearly 70 ocean bottom sites from 2005 through mid-2007. Both the usage broad-band seismometers as well as the central location of Hawaii with good azimuthal seismicity coverage has allowed us to conduct a comprehensive analysis of surface wave azimuthal anisotropy at periods between 20 and 100 s. We use a sub-array approach to successively fit propagating spherical wave fronts in order to obtain frequency-dependent estimates at a large number of points. We use the standard Smith-and-Dahlen parameterization to express azimuthal variations. A systematic comparison between results obtained for different truncation levels in the trigonometric expansion allows us to assess stability of the results and assign error bars. At short periods, the fast direction aligns coherently with the fossil spreading direction across the entire PLUME network. This result supports the idea that flow-aligned asthenospheric material is "frozen" to the bottom of the cooling plate as it thickens. However, at longer periods, that sense the asthenosphere below the fast direction rotates incoherently, indicating that flow in the asthenosphere is significantly perturbed from the direction of current plate motion. A published shear-wave splitting study (Collins et al., 2012) found no evidence for such an anomalous mantle flow and therefore seems inconsistent with our results. We present initial surface-wave inversion results that suggest that plume-related mantle flow does not reach into the upper lithosphere. We also present forward-modeling results attempting to reconcile both surface-wave and shear-wave splitting observations. Collins, J.A., Wolfe, C.J. and Laske, G., 2012. Shear wave splitting at the Hawaiian hots pot from the PLUME land and ocean bottom seismometer deployments, Geochem. Geophys. Geosys., 13, doi:10.1029/2011gc003881.

  17. Effect of partial melting on small scale convection atop a mantle plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Agrusta, R.; Arcay, D.; Tommasi, A.; Gonzalez, A.

    2014-12-01

    A lithospheric plate passing atop a mantle plume is likely to be thermally thinned or "rejuvenated". Geophysical data on the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB) depth beneath active hotspots partly validate this prediction, but there is a large variation of the LAB upwelling estimated from different methods. Numerical simulations of plume-lithosphere interactions show that the development of small-scale convection (SSC) in the plume pancake spreading out along the base of the lithosphere is a mechanism able to rejuvenate the lithosphere, even for a fast-moving plate. The triggering of SSC has been shown to depend on the rheological behaviour of the unstable layer underlying the stagnant upper part of the thermal boundary layer (TBL), but the stability of the this layer may also be affected by partial melting.We analyze, using a 2D petrological-thermo-mechanical numerical model, the influence of partial melting on the dynamics of time-dependent SSC instabilities and the resulting rejuvenation of a lithosphere passing atop a mantle plume. These models show a complex behavior, with either an acceleration, no change or a slight decceleration of the SSC onset, due to the competing effects of the latent heat of melting, which cools the plume material, and of the buoyancy increase associated with melting, among which the dominant effect is the depletion in heavy elements of the solid fraction. The viscosity reduction, though significant (up to 2 orders of magnitude) is too localized to affect the SSC dynamics. Despite the presence of partial melting, the mechanical lithosphere erosion in not enhanced significantly relatively to melt-free models.

  18. Recent off-axis volcanism in the eastern Gulf of Aden: Implications for plume-ridge interaction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leroy, Sylvie; d'Acremont, Elia; Tiberi, Christel; Basuyau, Clémence; Autin, Julia; Lucazeau, Francis; Sloan, Heather

    2010-04-01

    Evidence of anomalous volcanism is readily observed in the Gulf of Aden, although, much of this oceanic basin remains as yet unmapped. In this paper, we investigate the possible connection of the Afar hotspot with a major off-axis volcanic structure and its interpretation as a consequence of a the anomalous presence of melt by integrating several data sets, both published and unpublished, from the Encens-Sheba cruise, the Aden New Century (ANC) cruise and several other onshore and marine surveys. These include bathymetric, gravity, magnetic, magneto-telluric data, and rock samples. Based upon these observations, interpretations were made of seafloor morphology, gravity and magnetic models, seafloor age, geochemical analyses and tectonic setting. We discuss the possible existence of a regional melting anomaly in the Gulf of Aden area and of the probability of its connection to the Afar plume. Several models that might explain the anomalous volcanism are taken into account, such as a local melting anomaly unrelated to the Afar plume, an anomalously large volume of melt associated with seafloor spreading, and interaction of the ridge with the Afar plume. A local melting anomaly and atypical seafloor spreading prove inconsistent with our observations. Two previously proposed models of plume-ridge interactions are examined: the diffuse plume dispersion called pancaked flow and channelized along-axis flow. We conclude that the configuration and structure of this young ocean basin may have the effect of channeling material away from the Afar plume along the Aden and Sheba Ridges to produce the off-axis volcanism observed on the ridge flanks. This interpretation implies that the influence of the Afar hotspot may extend much farther eastwards into the Gulf of Aden than previously believed. The segmentation of the Gulf of Aden and the configuration of the Aden-Sheba system may provide a potential opportunity to study channeled flow of solid plume mantle from the plume along

  19. A mantle plume initiation model for the wrangellia flood basalt and other oceanic plateaus.

    PubMed

    Richards, M A; Jones, D L; Duncan, R A; Depaolo, D J

    1991-10-11

    The vast Wrangellia terrane of Alaska and British Columbia is an accreted oceanic plateau with Triassic strata that contain a 3- to 6-kilometers thick flood basalt, bounded above and below by marine sedimentary rocks. This enormous outpouring of basalt was preceded by rapid uplift and was followed by gradual subsidence of the plateau. The uplift and basalt eruptions occurred in less than approximately 5 million years, and were not accompanied by significant extension or rifting of the lithosphere. This sequence of events is predicted by a mantle plume initiation, or plume head, model that has recently been developed to explain continental flood volcanism. Evidence suggests that other large oceanic basalt plateaus, such as the Ontong-Java, Kerguelen, and Caribbean, were formed as the initial outbursts of the Louisville Ridge, Kerguelen, and Galapagos hot spots, respectively. Such events may play an important role in the creation and development of both oceanic and continental crust.

  20. Mixing and entrainment in mantle plumes: A 3D experimental investigation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Newsome, William; Cotel, Aline; Lithgow-Bertelloni, Carolina; Hart, Stanley; Whitehead, John

    2011-11-01

    Significant differences exist between isotopic signatures of typical mid-ocean ridge basalts (MORB) and those associated with many ocean islands, with ocean island basalts (OIB) generally exhibiting more variability in trace element concentrations and also a bias towards enrichment in radiogenic isotopes such as Sr, Nd, Hf and Pb. Such observations coupled with other geophysical evidence have been used to suggest that OIB's are surface manifestations of thermal plumes originating in the deep interior near the core-mantle boundary that interact with distinct, heterogeneous reservoirs as material is transported from the Earth's interior to the surface. We experimentally investigate the structure and transport characteristics of isolated thermal plumes in corn syrup. The 3D velocity field is measured using a scanning stereoscopic particle image velocimetry system. Two types of tracer particles are simultaneously utilized, with thermochromic liquid crystals providing an estimate of the temperature field. Lagrangian coherent structures computed from the velocity field identify key material lines and surfaces that provide a taxonomic picture of plumes operating in different regimes. These govern how the plume interacts with the ambient during its ascent.

  1. Three-Dimensional Geophysical Structure of the Yellowstone / Snake River Plain Hotspot System: Is a Deep Mantle Plume Required?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fouch, M. J.; James, D. E.; Kelbert, A.; Egbert, G. D.; Wagner, L. S.; Carlson, R. W.; Roth, J. B.

    2011-12-01

    Providing new constraints on the origin of the Yellowstone / Snake River Plain (YSRP) hotspot system is an important contribution enabled the EarthScope program. This age-progressive track of rhyolitic volcanism has long been hypothesized as resulting from a deep mantle plume. Here we present an integrated view of new results from EarthScope seismic and magnetotelluric (MT) data that shed new light on the deep structure and dynamics of the YSRP system. Nearly all new body wave tomographic models utilizing EarthScope data show a distinct swath of strongly reduced seismic wavespeeds extending laterally from the central SRP to Yellowstone, extending to depths of no greater than ~200 km. There is no evidence for a singular, concentrated conduit of reduced velocities below 200 km, as expected from a focused mantle plume upwelling. Surface wave tomography shows similar patterns for the YSRP region, with shear wavespeeds consistent with partial melt zones within the YSRP crust and uppermost mantle extending to depths of ~125 km, and aligned with the widespread distribution of Quaternary basaltic volcanism all along the SRP. Results from regional 3D MT models show focused zones of highly conductive crust and upper mantle, with the strongest conductivities in the uppermost mantle residing beneath the central Snake River Plain and the largest contrasts extending to ~100km depth. Given the paucity of evidence for a present-day plume, we explore geophysical proxies in the mantle flow field for past plume-related dynamics, appealing to proxies for mantle flow. Data from several seismic anisotropy studies confirm that the Yellowstone region exhibits little evidence for vertical mantle flow across the region. Further, the downgoing Juan de Fuca plate, imaged clearly in the tomographic studies, would provide a barrier to an upwelling mantle plume. An alternative to the plume model involves mantle flow around a stranded fragment of the Farallon plate whose northern edge parallels

  2. Interaction of mantle plumes and migrating mid-ocean ridges: Implications for the Gal{acute a}pagos plume-ridge system

    SciTech Connect

    Ito, G.; Lin, J.; Gable, C.W.

    1997-07-01

    We investigate the three-dimensional interaction of mantle plumes and migrating mid-ocean ridges with variable viscosity numerical models. Numerical models predict that along-axis plume width W and maximum distance of plume-ridge interaction x{sub max} scale with (Q/U){sup 1/2}, where Q is plume source volume flux and U is ridge full spreading rate. Both W and x{sub max} increase with buoyancy number {Pi}{sub b} which reflects the strength of gravitational- versus plate-driven spreading. Scaling laws derived for stationary ridges in steady-state with near-ridge plumes are consistent with those obtained from independent studies of {ital Ribe} [1996]. In the case of a migrating ridge, the distance of plume-ridge interaction is reduced when a ridge migrates toward the plume because of the excess drag of the faster moving leading plate and enhanced when a ridge migrates away from the plume because of the reduced drag of the slower moving trailing plate. Given the mildly buoyant and relatively viscous plumes investigated here, the slope of the lithospheric boundary and thermal erosion of the lithosphere have little effect on plume flow. From observed plume widths of the Gal{acute a}pagos plume-migrating ridge system, our scaling laws yield estimates of Gal{acute a}pagos plume volume flux of 5{endash}16{times}10{sup 6}km{sup 3}m.y.{sup {minus}1} and a buoyancy flux of {minus}2{times}10{sup 3}kgs{sup {minus}1}. Model results suggest that the observed increase in bathymetric and mantle-Bouguer gravity anomalies along Cocos Plate isochrons with increasing isochron age is due to higher crustal production when the Gal{acute a}pagos ridge axis was closer to the plume several million years ago. The anomaly amplitudes can be explained by a plume source with a relatively mild temperature anomaly (50{degree}{endash}100{degree}C) and moderate radius (100{endash}200 km). (Abstract Truncated)

  3. Two-Stage Melting Of Mantle Plumes And The Origin Of Rejuvenescent Volcanism On Oceanic Islands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    White, W. M.; Morgan, J. P.

    2004-12-01

    tail region are isotopically distinct from those produced in the main melting region. We propose the following model to explain this difference: Mantle plumes are lithologically heterogeneous, consisting of eclogite or pyroxenite "plums" that have a solidus temperature several tens of degrees lower than the more refractory peridotite "pudding" in which they are embedded. Complete isotopic equilibrium is not achieved during melting - either because the plums are large enough (>10-100m) or the extraction of plum melts is rapid after their generation. Both the plums and the peridotite are incompatible-element enriched relative to the average depleted upper mantle, but the plums are substantially more enriched. The plums melt entirely in the base of the main melting region and the heat so consumed initially suppresses melting of the peridotite pudding. Plum-derived melts mix as they rise with melts of the peridotite pudding produced higher in the main melting region. This mixture of eclogitic and peridotitic melts form the shield stage magmas. Material in the melting "tail" has had the plums melted out of it in the main melting region. Low degree melting of the plum-free peridotite in the melting tail gives rise to rejuvenescent magmas. Melt production in the tail is more or less continuous, but rejuvenescent volcanism is not. This suggests that some other factor is involved, such as lithospheric loading by adjacent volcanoes, that provides pathways to the surface for small degree tail melts.

  4. A common mantle plume source beneath the entire East African Rift System revealed by coupled helium-neon systematics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Halldórsson, Sæmundur A.; Hilton, David R.; Scarsi, Paolo; Abebe, Tsegaye; Hopp, Jens

    2014-04-01

    We report combined He-Ne-Ar isotope data of mantle-derived xenoliths and/or lavas from all segments of the East Africa Rift System (EARS). Plume-like helium isotope (3He/4He) ratios (i.e., greater than the depleted MORB mantle (DMM) range of 8 ± 1RA) are restricted to the Ethiopia Rift and Rungwe, the southernmost volcanic province of the Western Rift. In contrast, neon isotope trends reveal the presence of an ubiquitous solar (plume-like) Ne component throughout the EARS, with (21Ne/22Ne)EX values (where (21Ne/22Ne)EX is the air-corrected 21Ne/22Ne ratio extrapolated to Ne-B) as low as 0.034, close to that of solar Ne-B (0.031). Coupling (21Ne/22Ne)EX with 4He/3He ratios indicates that all samples can be explained by admixture between a single mantle plume source, common to the entire rift, and either a DMM or subcontinental lithospheric mantle source. Additionally, we show that the entire sample suite is characterized by low 3He/22NeS ratios (mostly < 0.2)—a feature characteristic of oceanic hot spots such as Iceland. We propose that the origin of these unique noble gas signatures is the deeply rooted African Superplume which influences magmatism throughout eastern Africa. We argue that the Ethiopia and Kenya domes represent two different heads of this common mantle plume source.

  5. A mantle plume beneath California? The mid-Miocene Lovejoy Flood Basalt, northern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Garrison, N.J.; Busby, C.J.; Gans, P.B.; Putirka, K.; Wagner, D.L.

    2008-01-01

    The Lovejoy basalt represents the largest eruptive unit identified in California, and its age, volume, and chemistry indicate a genetic affinity with the Columbia River Basalt Group and its associated mantle-plume activity. Recent field mapping, geochemical analyses, and radiometric dating suggest that the Lovejoy basalt erupted during the mid-Miocene from a fissure at Thompson Peak, south of Susanville, California. The Lovejoy flowed through a paleovalley across the northern end of the Sierra Nevada to the Sacramento Valley, a distance of 240 km. Approximately 150 km3 of basalt were erupted over a span of only a few centuries. Our age dates for the Lovejoy basalt cluster are near 15.4 Ma and suggest that it is coeval with the 16.1-15.0 Ma Imnaha and Grande Ronde flows of the Columbia River Basalt Group. Our new mapping and age dating support the interpretation that the Lovejoy basalt erupted in a forearc position relative to the ancestral Cascades arc, in contrast with the Columbia River Basalt Group, which erupted in a backarc position. The arc front shifted trenchward into the Sierran block after 15.4 Ma. However, the Lovejoy basalt appears to be unrelated to volcanism of the predominantly calc-alkaline Cascade arc; instead, the Lovejoy is broadly tholeiitic, with trace-element characteristics similar to the Columbia River Basalt Group. Association of the Lovejoy basalt with mid-Miocene flood basalt volcanism has considerable implications for North American plume dynamics and strengthens the thermal "point source" explanation, as provided by the mantle-plume hypothesis. Alternatives to the plume hypothesis usually call upon lithosphere-scale cracks to control magmatic migrations in the Yellowstone-Columbia River basalt region. However, it is difficult to imagine a lithosphere-scale flaw that crosses Precambrian basement and accreted terranes to reach the Sierra microplate, where the Lovejoy is located. Therefore, we propose that the Lovejoy represents a rapid

  6. Mantle plume related dynamic uplift and plate kinematics: The NE Atlantic case with global implications.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Skogseid, Jakob; Khabbaz Ghazian, Reza; Lunt, Ian

    2014-05-01

    At present a pronounced residual depth anomaly (RDA), centred on Iceland, is characterizing the bathymetry of the NE Atlantic region. For the oceanic lithosphere this anomaly represents a <500 to >2500 m elevation difference compared to 'normal' oceanic lithosphere. The observed depth anomaly has since Cochran and Talwani (1978) been ascribed to a 200 -300 km thick moderate thermal anomaly beneath the oceanic lithosphere, the existence of which today has been proven by a sizable low velocity zone on seismic tomography data. The sub-lithosphere low velocities are, however, not limited to the oceanic domain, but also underlie the adjacent continental lithosphere, thus causing a similar magnitude anomalous elevation of the continental shelves and landmasses. The thermal anomaly is presumed to relate to the arrival of the Iceland mantle plume demonstrated by excess Paleocene and Early Eocene magmatism and the formation of the North Atlantic Volcanic Province (NAVP), and subsequent volcanic margin formation. The present width of the RDA compares with the size of the regions that experienced excess magmatism during rifting and breakup, which implies that the sub-lithospheric thermally anomalous body was emplaced in Paleocene time, but still resides in the area. This presentation aims to describe the temporal and spatial development of uplift based on combining plate kinematic modeling with models of lithospheric and plume body thickness development through Late Cretaceous-Paleocene extension, and subsequent seafloor spreading. The model prediction of uplift compares well with descriptions of erosional episodes and depositional sequences off Greenland, in the Northern North Sea, off mid-Norway and in the SW Barents Sea, and represents a mechanism that explains the present elevation of East Greenland as well as western Norway. In a global perspective the close correlation between Large Igneous Provinces (LIP's), the arrival of known mantle plumes and formation of volcanic

  7. The geomagnetic field at the Paleozoic/Mesozoic and Mesozoic/Cenozoic boundaries and lower mantle plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pechersky, D. M.

    2007-10-01

    The data on the amplitude of variations in the direction and paleointensity of the geomagnetic field and the frequency of reversals throughout the last 50 Myr near the Paleozoic/Mesozoic and Mesozoic/Cenozoic boundaries, characterized by peaks of magmatic activity of Siberian and Deccan traps, and data on the amplitude of variations in the geomagnetic field direction relative to contemporary world magnetic anomalies are generalized. The boundaries of geological eras are not fixed in recorded paleointensity, polarity, reversal frequency, and variations in the geomagnetic field direction. Against the background of the “normal” field, nearly the same tendency of an increase in the amplitude of field direction variations is observed toward epicenters of contemporary lower mantle plumes; Greenland, Deccan, and Siberian superplumes; and world magnetic anomalies. This suggests a common origin of lower mantle plumes of various formation times, world magnetic anomalies, and the rise in the amplitude of geomagnetic field variations; i.e., all these phenomena are due to a local excitation in the upper part of the liquid core. Large plumes arise in intervals of the most significant changes in the paleointensity (drops or rises), while no correlation exists between the plume generation and the reversal frequency: times of plume formation correlate with the very diverse patterns of the frequency of reversals, from their total absence to maximum frequencies, implying that world magnetic anomalies, variations in the magnetic field direction and paleointensity, and plumes, on the one hand, and field reversals, on the other, have different sources. The time interval between magmatic activity of a plume at the Earth’s surface and its origination at the core-mantle boundary (the time of the plume rise toward the surface) amounts to 20 50 Myr in all cases considered. Different rise times are apparently associated with different paths of the plume rise, “delays” in the plume

  8. Concurrent Evaluation of Magma Production, Volcano Growth, and Geochemical Structure in Mantle Plumes: Hawaii Drilling Project (HSDP) Results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Depaolo, D. J.

    2007-12-01

    The Hawaii Scientific Drilling Project (HSDP) completed its drilling and coring of the northeast flank of the Mauna Kea volcano in early 2007. The project obtained a nearly continuous core consisting of lava flows, hyaloclastite, minor intrusives and sediment from a 3260 m section of the Mauna Kea volcano, covering an age range from 200 to over 600 ka. It also recovered a 280m section of the Mauna Loa volcano. When combined with surface and dredge samples, there now is a 600-700 ky record of the lava output from Mauna Kea as well as a 200 ky record from Mauna Loa. These records can be interpreted in terms of the geochemical structure of the Hawaiian plume, given a model for the sampling of the plume by melting and melt transport. The continuous nature of the HSDP core, with the implied continuous monitoring of the lava output from the volcano, has dictated that we develop models for the plume behavior just below the lithosphere, and for how magma is collected from the plume melting region and supplied to an individual volcano. Although there are as yet no detailed physical models for the melt collection and transport, we have experimented with simple geometric models. These models can be constrained by the volume and volume-age structure of the Hawaiian volcanoes, and by available geodynamic models for the Hawaiian plume. Using these models we can interpret geochemical data from the lavas in terms of plume structure. Any systematic variability in Hawaiian lavas with depth (age) in the drillcore can be attributed to structure in the plume, and one of the interesting results is that there is such structure even though melting within the plume samples only the innermost third or so the plume radius. The data show that there is radial geochemical zoning of the melting region of the plume in terms of He, Pb, Nd, Sr and Hf isotopes. This geochemical structure represents the hot core of the plume and does not reflect entrainment of ambient lower or upper mantle. To first

  9. The High Arctic Large Igneous Province Mantle Plume caused uplift of Arctic Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Galloway, Jennifer; Ernst, Richard; Hadlari, Thomas

    2016-04-01

    The Sverdrup Basin is an east-west-trending extensional sedimentary basin underlying the northern Canadian Arctic Archipelago. The tectonic history of the basin began with Carboniferous-Early Permian rifting followed by thermal subsidence with minor tectonism. Tectonic activity rejuvenated in the Hauterivian-Aptian by renewed rifting and extension. Strata were deformed by diapiric structures that developed during episodic flow of Carboniferous evaporites during the Mesozoic and the basin contains igneous components associated with the High Arctic Large Igneous Province (HALIP). HALIP was a widespread event emplaced in multiple pulses spanning ca. 180 to 80 Ma, with igneous rocks on Svalbard, Franz Josef Island, New Siberian Islands, and also in the Sverdrup Basin on Ellef Ringnes, Axel Heiberg, and Ellesmere islands. Broadly contemporaneous igneous activity across this broad Arctic region along with a reconstructed giant radiating dyke swarm suggests that HALIP is a manifestation of large mantle plume activity probably centred near the Alpha Ridge. Significant surface uplift associated with the rise of a mantle plume is predicted to start ~10-20 my prior to the generation of flood basalt magmatism and to vary in shape and size subsequently throughout the LIP event (1,2,3) Initial uplift is due to dynamical support associated with the top of the ascending plume reaching a depth of about 1000 km, and with continued ascent the uplift topography broadens. Additional effects (erosion of the ductile lithosphere and thermal expansion caused by longer-term heating of the mechanical lithosphere) also affect the shape of the uplift. Topographic uplift can be between 1 to 4 km depending on various factors and may be followed by subsidence as the plume head decays or become permanent due to magmatic underplating. In the High Arctic, field and geochronological data from HALIP relevant to the timing of uplift, deformation, and volcanism are few. Here we present new evidence

  10. Mantle Plume Upwelling Rates: Evidence from U-Series in Young Ocean Island Basalts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bourdon, B.; Turner, S. P.; Stracke, A.; Saal, A. E.

    2004-12-01

    U-series disequilibria measured in recent lavas at intraplate volcanoes provide a powerful probe to examine the validity of the plume model. U-Th and U-Pa fractionation produced during melting is a function of the melting rate. In turn, this parameter should scale with mantle upwelling velocities. Simply stated, a larger melting rate (larger mantle upwelling velocity) yields smaller Th and Pa excess relative to their parent nuclides. A number of observations supports this approach: (1) there is a negative correlation between 230Th excess and buoyancy fluxes (2) based on new measurements of 231Pa in the Azores, Iceland and the Galapagos and literature data, we show here that there is also a well defined correlation between 231Pa excess and buoyancy flux (3) For Hawaii, Iceland and the Azores, 230Th excess (or 231Pa excess) increases as a function of the distance from the centre of the `hotspot'. These observations suggests that `hotspot' buoyancy fluxes are associated with a greater melt production per unit of time and that the centre of `hotspot' corresponds to a faster mantle upwelling velocity than its periphery. This is therefore in strong support of a model where ocean islands are associated with faster upwelling at depth. However, there is in fact not a simple relationship between melt productivity and upwelling velocities. Notably, the presence of volatiles, of mafic lithologies or of variably enriched peridotitic source could all affect melting rate and hence U-Th-Pa fractionation. We have considered these issues in great detail using a large data base for the Azores islands. While there are clear variations in mantle source composition, they cannot explain the observations of increasing 231Pa/235U ratio with distance from the centre of the Azores hotspot . If we take into account the effect of water in the source of the Azores, it clearly affects the scaling between U-series fractionation and upwelling velocity but not the overall conclusions.

  11. Patterns in Galápagos Magmatism Arising from the Upper Mantle Dynamics of Plume-Ridge Interaction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ito, G.; Bianco, T. A.

    2014-12-01

    The origin of various patterns seen in Galápagos magmatism is investigated using numerical simulations of a mantle plume interacting with the Galapágos Spreading Center (GSC) as its position and geometry evolved over the past 6 Myr. Models predict magma generation and composition from a mantle composed of fusible veins of material enriched in incompatible elements imbedded in a more refractory depleted matrix. Model 1 simulates a low-viscosity plume owing to a temperature-dependent mantle rheology; Model 2 includes the added dependence on water content, which leads to high-viscosities in the dehydrated, shallow upper mantle. Model 1 produces the most favorable results. It shows how a modest crustal thickness anomaly observed along the Western GSC can arise from a plume with large excess temperatures (>100˚C). Model 1 also predicts geographic patterns in magma isotopic compositions generally resembling those observed along the GSC as well as around the Galapágos Archipelago. These patterns are predicted to arise out of the differences in melting depths between the enriched veins and depleted matrix, coupled with spatial variations in the rate of mantle upwelling and decompression melting. The results provide an alternative to traditional explanations involving the plume mixing with or entraining the ambient mantle. The models are still missing some essential factors as indicated by the predicted increases, rather than the observed decrease in incompatible element concentration away from the hotspot along the GSC. Possible factors include a regional-scale zoning in incompatible element and/or water content within the plume, or melt migration that delivers a larger flux of incompatible-element-rich melts to the GSC. This study will be published as one of 18 chapters in The Galapagos: A Natural Laboratory for Earth Sciences, edited by K. Harpp, E. Mittlestaedt, N. d'Ozouville, and D. W. Graham, Geophys. Monogr. 204. AGU & J. Wiley, 2014.

  12. The Yellowstone magmatic system from the mantle plume to the upper crust

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, H. H.; Lin, F. C.; Schmandt, B.; Farrell, J.; Smith, R. B.; Tsai, V. C.

    2015-12-01

    The Yellowstone supervolcano is one of the largest active continental silicic volcanic fields in the world. An understanding of its properties is key to enhancing our knowledge of volcanic mechanisms and corresponding risk. Using a joint local and teleseismic earthquake P-wave seismic inversion, we unveil a basaltic lower-crustal magma body that provides a magmatic link between the Yellowstone mantle plume and the previously imaged upper-crustal magma reservoir. This lower-crustal magma body has a volume of 46,000 km3, ~4.5 times larger than the upper-crustal magma reservoir, and contains a melt fraction of ~2%. These estimates are critical to understanding the evolution of bimodal basaltic-rhyolitic volcanism, explaining the magnitude of CO2 discharge, and constraining dynamic models of the magmatic system for volcanic hazard assessment.

  13. Volcanology. The Yellowstone magmatic system from the mantle plume to the upper crust.

    PubMed

    Huang, Hsin-Hua; Lin, Fan-Chi; Schmandt, Brandon; Farrell, Jamie; Smith, Robert B; Tsai, Victor C

    2015-05-15

    The Yellowstone supervolcano is one of the largest active continental silicic volcanic fields in the world. An understanding of its properties is key to enhancing our knowledge of volcanic mechanisms and corresponding risk. Using a joint local and teleseismic earthquake P-wave seismic inversion, we revealed a basaltic lower-crustal magma body that provides a magmatic link between the Yellowstone mantle plume and the previously imaged upper-crustal magma reservoir. This lower-crustal magma body has a volume of 46,000 cubic kilometers, ~4.5 times that of the upper-crustal magma reservoir, and contains a melt fraction of ~2%. These estimates are critical to understanding the evolution of bimodal basaltic-rhyolitic volcanism, explaining the magnitude of CO2 discharge, and constraining dynamic models of the magmatic system for volcanic hazard assessment.

  14. The Yellowstone magmatic system from the mantle plume to the upper crust

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Hsin-Hua; Lin, Fan-Chi; Schmandt, Brandon; Farrell, Jamie; Smith, Robert B.; Tsai, Victor C.

    2015-05-01

    The Yellowstone supervolcano is one of the largest active continental silicic volcanic fields in the world. An understanding of its properties is key to enhancing our knowledge of volcanic mechanisms and corresponding risk. Using a joint local and teleseismic earthquake P-wave seismic inversion, we revealed a basaltic lower-crustal magma body that provides a magmatic link between the Yellowstone mantle plume and the previously imaged upper-crustal magma reservoir. This lower-crustal magma body has a volume of 46,000 cubic kilometers, ~4.5 times that of the upper-crustal magma reservoir, and contains a melt fraction of ~2%. These estimates are critical to understanding the evolution of bimodal basaltic-rhyolitic volcanism, explaining the magnitude of CO2 discharge, and constraining dynamic models of the magmatic system for volcanic hazard assessment.

  15. Volcanology. The Yellowstone magmatic system from the mantle plume to the upper crust.

    PubMed

    Huang, Hsin-Hua; Lin, Fan-Chi; Schmandt, Brandon; Farrell, Jamie; Smith, Robert B; Tsai, Victor C

    2015-05-15

    The Yellowstone supervolcano is one of the largest active continental silicic volcanic fields in the world. An understanding of its properties is key to enhancing our knowledge of volcanic mechanisms and corresponding risk. Using a joint local and teleseismic earthquake P-wave seismic inversion, we revealed a basaltic lower-crustal magma body that provides a magmatic link between the Yellowstone mantle plume and the previously imaged upper-crustal magma reservoir. This lower-crustal magma body has a volume of 46,000 cubic kilometers, ~4.5 times that of the upper-crustal magma reservoir, and contains a melt fraction of ~2%. These estimates are critical to understanding the evolution of bimodal basaltic-rhyolitic volcanism, explaining the magnitude of CO2 discharge, and constraining dynamic models of the magmatic system for volcanic hazard assessment. PMID:25908659

  16. Interaction of mantle plume heads with the earth's surface and onset of small-scale convection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Griffiths, R. W.; Campbell, I. H.

    1991-10-01

    The interaction of a mantle plume head with the earth's surface was examined by studying the behavior of a spherical blob of a buoyant fluid under the effect of gravity which forces it toward either a rigid horizontal boundary or a free surface. In the experiments, buoyant spheres of diapir fluid having no surface tension and extremely small Reynolds numbers but diameters as large as are practical in the laboratory were injected into wide cylindrical tanks filled with viscous (nu = 149 sq cm/sec) glucose syrup. Experimental results are presented for the thinning and lateral spreading of the bouyant fluid and for the thinning of the squeeze layer for both the case of a rigid, nonslip boundary (a rigid Perspex lid) and that of a free surface. These are compared with similarity scaling laws based on a balance between the buoyancy of the diapir and the viscous stresses in the diapir's surroundings.

  17. Rapid formation of Ontong Java Plateau by Aptian mantle plume volcanism

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Tarduno, J.A.; Sliter, W.V.; Kroenke, L.; Leckie, M.; Mayer, H.; Mahoney, J.J.; Musgrave, R.; Storey, M.; Winterer, E.L.

    1991-01-01

    The timing of flood basalt volcanism associated with formation of the Ontong Java Plateau (OJP) is estimated from paleomagnetic and paleontologic data. Much of OJP formed rapidly in less than 3 million years during the early Aptian, at the beginning of the Cretaceous Normal Polarity Superchron. Crustal emplacement rates are inferred to have been several times those of the Deccan Traps. These estimates are consistent with an origin of the OJP by impingement at the base of the oceanic lithosphere by the head of a large mantle plume. Formation of the OJP may have led to a rise in sea level that induced global oceanic anoxia. Carbon dioxide emissions likely contributed to the mid-Cretaceous greenhouse climate but did not provoke major biologic extinctions.

  18. Constraints on Mantle Plume Melting Conditions in the Martian Mantle Based on Improved Melting Phase Relationships of Olivine-Phyric Shergottite Yamato 980459

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kiefer, Walter S.; Rapp, Jennifer F.; Usui, Tomohiro; Draper, David S.; Filiberto, Justin

    2016-01-01

    Martian meteorite Yamato 980459 (hereafter Y98) is an olivine-phyric shergottite that has been interpreted as closely approximating a martian mantle melt [1-4], making it an important constraint on adiabatic decompression melting models. It has long been recognized that low pressure melting of the Y98 composition occurs at extremely high temperatures relative to martian basalts (1430 degC at 1 bar), which caused great difficulties in a previous attempt to explain Y98 magma generation via a mantle plume model [2]. However, previous studies of the phase diagram were limited to pressures of 2 GPa and less [2, 5], whereas decompression melting in the present-day martian mantle occurs at pressures of 3-7 GPa, with the shallow boundary of the melt production zone occurring just below the base of the thermal lithosphere [6]. Recent experimental work has now extended our knowledge of the Y98 melting phase relationships to 8 GPa. In light of this improved petrological knowledge, we are therefore reassessing the constraints that Y98 imposes on melting conditions in martian mantle plumes. Two recently discovered olivine- phyric shergottites, Northwest Africa (NWA) 5789 and NWA 6234, may also be primary melts from the martian mantle [7, 8]. However, these latter meteorites have not been the subject of detailed experimental petrology studies, so we focus here on Y98.

  19. Melt-generation processes associated with the Tristan mantle plume: Constraints on the origin of EM-1

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gibson, S. A.; Thompson, R. N.; Day, J. A.; Humphris, S. E.; Dickin, A. P.

    2005-09-01

    The enriched mantle 1 (EM-1) component in ocean-island basalts (OIB, e.g., Kerguelen, Pitcairn and Walvis Ridge) has been attributed to melting in upwelling mantle plumes of either: (i) shallow-recycled delaminated subcontinental-lithospheric-mantle or crust; or (ii) deep-recycled metasomatised lithosphere, oceanic plateau or oceanic crust plus a few percent of pelagic sediment. We present new geochemical data for OIB samples from the central South Atlantic; these include 100 to 30 Ma alkali and tholeiitic basalts from the Walvis Ridge and Rio Grande Rise and < 3 Ma basanites and basalts from Tristan da Cunha, Inaccessible and Gough. Additionally, we have analysed Cretaceous mafic-potassic magmas from south-west Africa and eastern South America in order to establish the compositional variation of metasomatised lithospheric mantle that may have been delaminated during Gondwana break-up. The results of our rare-earth-element inversion and Sr-, Nd- and Pb-isotopic mixing models suggest that the 'depleted' mantle plume component resembles FOZO and that the composition of the 'enriched' mantle component in central South Atlantic OIB has varied both spatially and temporally. At least three different enriched mantle end-members are required to explain the compositional range of 100 to 30 Ma OIB magmas. These resemble the source regions of mafic-potassic magmas from: (i) the Congo craton and Damara belt of south-west Africa; (ii) the São Francisco craton and Brasilia belt of south-east Brazil; and (iii) the Rio Apa-Luis Alves craton of southern Brazil and Paraguay. The most isotopically enriched EM-1 basalts ( ɛNd = - 0.8 to - 4.5), generated on the Walvis Ridge and Rio Grande Rise between 89 and 78 Ma, appear to contain a 10% to 15% contribution from a melt source region with low ɛNd, 206Pb / 204Pb and high [La / Nb] n, similar in composition to metasomatised subcratonic lithospheric mantle beneath southern Brazil and Paraguay. Reconstructions of plate motions indicate

  20. Petrological processes in mantle plume heads: Evidence from study of mantle xenoliths in the late Cenozoic alkali Fe-Ti basalts in Western Syria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharkov, Evgenii

    2015-04-01

    It is consensus now that within-plate magmatism is considered with ascending of mantle plumes and adiabatic melting of their head. At the same time composition of the plumes' matter and conditions of its adiabatic melting are unclear yet. The major source of objective information about it can be mantle xenoliths in alkali basalts and basanites which represent fragments of material of the plume heads above magma-generation zone. They are not represent material in melting zone, however, carry important information about material of modern mantle plumes, its phase composition and components, involved in melting. Populations of mantle xenoliths in basalts are characterized by surprising sameness in the world and represented by two major types: (1) dominated rocks of ``green'' series, and (2) more rare rocks of ``black'' series, which formed veins in the ``green'' series matrix. It can evidence about common composition of plume material in global scale. In other words, the both series of xenoliths represent two types of material of thermochemical mantle plumes, ascended from core-mantle boundary (Maruyama, 1994; Dobretsov et al., 2001). The same types of xenoliths are found in basalts and basanites of Western Syria (Sharkov et al., 1996). Rocks of ``green'' series are represented by Sp peridotites with cataclastic and protogranular structures and vary in composition from dominated spinel lherzolites to spinel harzburgites and rare spinel pyroxenites (websterites). It is probably evidence about incomplete homogenizing of the plume head matter, where material, underwent by partial melting, adjoins with more fertile material. Such heterogeneity was survived due to quick cooling of upper rim of the plume head in contact with relatively cold lithosphere. Essential role among xenoliths of the ``black'' series play Al-Ti-augite and water-bearing phases like hornblende (kaersutute) and Ti-phlogopite. Rocks of this series are represented by wehrlite, clinopyroxenite, amphibole

  1. Paleogeothermal record of the Emeishan mantle plume: evidences from borehole Ro data in the Sichuan basin, SW China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, S.

    2013-12-01

    The Emeishan basalt province located in the southwest of China is widely accepted to be a result of the eruption of a mantle plume at the time of middle-late Permian. If it was a mantle plume, the ambient sedimentary rocks must be heated up during the development of the mantle plume and this thermal effect must be recorded by some geothermometers in the country rocks. The vitrinite reflectance (Ro) data as a maximum paleotemperature recorder from boreholes in Sichuan basin was employed to expose the thermal regime related to the proposed Emeishan mantle plume. The Ro profiles from boreholes which drilled close to the Emeishan basalts shows a ';dog-leg' (break) style at the unconformity between the middle and the upper Permian, and the Ro profiles in the lower subsection (pre-middle Permian) shows a significantly higher slopes (gradients) than those in the upper subsection. In contrast, those Ro profiles from boreholes far away from the center of the basalt province have no break at the uncomformity. Based on the chemical kinetic model of Ro, the paleo-temperature gradients for the upper and the lower subsections in different boreholes, as well as the erosion at the unconformity between the middle and the upper Permian, were reconstructed to reveal the variations of the temperature gradients and erosion thickness with geological time and space. Both the thermal regime and the erosion thickness together with their spatial variation (structure) provide strong geothermal evidence for the existence of the Emeishan mantle plume in the middle-late Permian.

  2. Relative and Absolute Plate Motions, Mantle Plumes and Volcanism in the Arctic region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gaina, C.; Torsvik, T. H.

    2012-04-01

    Seafloor spreading in the North Atlantic ocean from Mesozoic until present day involved relative motion between three major tectonic plates: North America, Greenland and Eurasia and a number of microplates. Relative motions between these tectonic plates and movement of northern Pacific terranes since the Jurassic led to the development of the Arctic region as we know it today. Studying the connection between the two realms involve good knowledge of the development of the North Atlantic and Arctic margins and oceanic basins and ideally, model uncertainties. Here we review the kinematics of North Atlantic and asses the implications of different models for locating the plate boundaries in the Arctic. One set of models implies extension before opening of the Eurasia basin and we postulate that this was accommodated in the proximity of Alpha- Mendeleev Ridge. The origin of (mainly) Cretaceous large igneous activity in the central Arctic (the Alpha Mendeleev Ridge) and in the proximity of rifted margins, the so-called HALIP, is still debated. New models of global plate circuits and the connection with deep mantle are used to re-evaluate a possible link between the Arctic volcanism and mantle plumes.

  3. Mongolian plateau: Evidence for a late Cenozoic mantle plume under central Asia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Windley, Brian F.; Allen, Mark B.

    1993-04-01

    The 2500 x 700 km Mongolian plateau (average elevation 2000 m) is situated between the Altai orogen and the Siberian craton and occupies much of Mongolia and Transbaikalia in Russia. The plateau is characterized by (1) basin and range topography and two major domes(Hentai, 600 x 300 km, and Hangai, 800 x 550 km), where altitudes reach 3905 m; (2) lithosphere that is thinner than adjacent areas (minimum ˜50 km); (3) elevated heat flow (up to 120 mW/m2); (4) dominantly alkaline basaltic volcanism in the form of cones, lava fields, and volcanic plateaus mostly of Miocene-Quaternary age, and (5) rifts, including Baikal (main evolution in the Pliocene-Quaternary), Tunka (Oligocene-early Miocene), and Hobsogol (Pliocene-Quaternary). Existing models explain these features in terms of diapiric upwelling of a mantle asthenolith below the main rifts and/or as a long-distance effect of the India-Asia collision. We propose that the late Cenozoic uplift of the whole Mongolian plateau and associated rifting, magmatism, high heat flow, and lithospherec thinning are not externally driven by the India-Asia collision, but are the expression of the interaction of a mantle plume with overlying lithosphere. Some rifts link and interact with major strike-slip faults, such as the Bolnai. Such faults may be the major expression of the India-Asia collision in this region.

  4. Neogene magmatism northeast of the Aegir and Kolbeinsey ridges, NE Atlantic: Spreading ridge-mantle plume interaction?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Breivik, AsbjøRn Johan; Faleide, Jan Inge; Mjelde, Rolf

    2008-02-01

    According to mantle plume theory the Earth's interior cools partly by localized large vertical mass transport, causing extensive decompression melting. The Iceland melt anomaly is regarded as a typical example of a mantle plume. However, there are centers of Miocene to recent magmatism in the Norwegian-Greenland Sea not easily explained by the plume theory. Here we present new data to document diffuse late Miocene magmatic underplating of older oceanic crust located mostly north of the Aegir Ridge, an extinct seafloor spreading axis in the Norway Basin. There is also a region with similar magmatism northeast of the presently spreading Kolbeinsey Ridge north of Iceland. Intraplate magmatism in these locations is not easily explained by local plume models, edge-driven convection, or by asthenosphere flow-lithosphere thickness interaction. On the basis of correlation between the magmatism and the active or extinct spreading ridges, we propose the mid-ocean ridge basalt-capture model, in which this magmatism can be understood through plume-spreading ridge interaction: The asthenosphere flow out from Iceland captures deeper, low-degree partially molten asthenospheric regions from underneath the spreading ridges and carry these across the terminating fracture zones, to subsequently underplate oceanic crust or to intrude and build seamounts. This model is similar to lithospheric cracking models for intraplate magmatism in requiring that low-degree partial melt can be retained in the asthenosphere over time but differ in that the magma is extracted by internal magma movement processes and not by external tectonic forces.

  5. Mantle plume or slab window?: Physical and geochemical constraints on the origin of the Caribbean oceanic plateau (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kerr, A. C.; Hastie, A.

    2009-12-01

    The Caribbean oceanic plateau formed in the Pacific realm when it erupted onto the Farallon plate due to melting of (possibly) the Galapagos hotspot at ~93 Ma. The plateau was subsequently transported to the northeast and collided with the Great Arc of the Caribbean thus initiating subduction polarity reversal and the consequent tectonic emplacement of the Caribbean plate between the North and South American continents. The plateau represents a large outpouring of mafic volcanism, which has been interpreted as having formed by melting of a hot mantle plume. Conversely, some have suggested that a slab window could be involved in forming the plateau. However, the source regions of oceanic plateaus are distinct from N-MORB (the likely source composition for slab window mafic rocks). Furthermore, melt modelling using primitive (high-MgO) Caribbean oceanic plateau lavas from Curaçao, shows that the primary magmas of the plateau contained ~20 wt.% MgO and were derived from 30-32 % partial melting of a fertile peridotite source region which had a potential temperature (Tp) of 1564-1614 °C. Thus, the Caribbean oceanic plateau lavas are derived from decompression melting of a hot upwelling mantle plume with excess heat relative to ambient upper mantle. Extensional decompression partial melting of sub-slab asthenosphere in a slab window with an ambient mantle Tp cannot produce enough melt to form a plateau. The formation of the Caribbean oceanic plateau by melting of ambient upper mantle in, or close to, a slab window setting, is therefore, highly improbable. Reference Hastie, A.R., Kerr, A.C. 2010. Mantle plume or slab window?: Physical and geochemical constraints on the origin of the Caribbean oceanic plateau. Earth Science Reviews, in press.

  6. VP and VS structure of the Yellowstone hot spot from teleseismic tomography: Evidence for an upper mantle plume

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Waite, Gregory P.; Smith, Robert B.; Allen, Richard M.

    2006-01-01

    The movement of the lithosphere over a stationary mantle magmatic source, often thought to be a mantle plume, explains key features of the 16 Ma Yellowstone–Snake River Plain volcanic system. However, the seismic signature of a Yellowstone plume has remained elusive because of the lack of adequate data. We employ new teleseismic P and S wave traveltime data to develop tomographic images of the Yellowstone hot spot upper mantle. The teleseismic data were recorded with two temporary seismograph arrays deployed in a 500 km by 600 km area centered on Yellowstone. Additional data from nearby regional seismic networks were incorporated into the data set. The VP and VS models reveal a strong low-velocity anomaly from ∼50 to 200 km directly beneath the Yellowstone caldera and eastern Snake River Plain, as has been imaged in previous studies. Peak anomalies are −2.3% for VP and −5.5% for VS. A weaker, anomaly with a velocity perturbation of up to −1.0% VP and −2.5% VS continues to at least 400 km depth. This anomaly dips 30° from vertical, west-northwest to a location beneath the northern Rocky Mountains. We interpret the low-velocity body as a plume of upwelling hot, and possibly wet rock, from the mantle transition zone that promotes small-scale convection in the upper ∼200 km of the mantle and long-lived volcanism. A high-velocity anomaly, 1.2%VP and 1.9% VS, is located at ∼100 to 250 km depth southeast of Yellowstone and may represent a downwelling of colder, denser mantle material.

  7. Midcontinent rift volcanism in the Lake Superior region: Sr, Nd, and Pb isotopic evidence for a mantle plume origin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nicholson, S.W.; Shirey, S.B.

    1990-01-01

    Between 1091 and 1098 Ma, most of a 15- to 20-km thickness of dominantly tholeiitic basalt erupted in the Midcontinent Rift System of the Lake Superior region, North America. The Portage Lake Volcanics in Michigan, which are the younget MRS flood basalts, fall into distinctly high- and low-TiO2 types having different liquid lines of descent. Incompatible trace elements in both types of tholeiites are enriched compared to depleted or primitive mantle and both basalt types are isotopically indistinguishable. The isotopic enrichment of the MRS source compared to depleted mantle is striking and must have occurred at least 700 m.y. before 1100 Ma. There are two likely sources for such magmatism: subcontinental lithospheric mantle enriched during the early Proterozoic or enriched mantle derived from an upwelling plume. Decompression melting of an upwelling enriched mantle plume in a region of lithosphere thinned by extension could have successfully generated the enormous volume (850 ?? 103 km3) of relatively homogeneous magma in a restricted time interval. -from Authors

  8. The Hawaiian Mantle Plume from Toe to Head along the Northwest Hawaiian Ridge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harrison, L.; Weis, D.; Garcia, M. O.

    2015-12-01

    The Hawaiian-Emperor (HE) chain records ~82 Myr of volcanism1 with two distinct geochemical and geographical trends, Kea and Loa, identified on the archipelago. The Northwest Hawaiian Ridge (NWHR) includes 51 volcanoes, spanning ~42 Myr between the bend in the HE chain and the Hawaiian Islands (47% of the HE chain2), that has no high-precision isotopic data aside from two volcanoes near the bend1. Only Kea compositions have been observed on Emperor seamounts (>50 Ma)1,3, whereas the Hawaiian Islands (<6.5 Ma) have both Kea and Loa lavas3,4. We have analyzed 23 samples of shield stage tholeiitic lavas from 13 NWHR volcanoes for Pb isotopes to test if the Loa trend exhibits a persistent presence along the ridge after Diakakuji seamount1. Age corrected 206Pb/204Pb range from 17.870 at Diakakuji to 18.654 at Midway atoll. The most enriched Loa isotopic compositions are erupted at Diakakuji (comparable to Lanai), and Mokumanamana, West Nihoa, and Nihoa have isotopic compositions similar to Mauna Loa. These observations suggest an ephemeral presence of the Loa geochemical trend along the NWHR. When shield-stage lavas of each Hawaiian volcano is averaged, NWHR volcanoes shows the most and least radiogenic Pb of the entire HE dataset: Diakakuji (0.9703) and Midway (0.9247). The NWHR exhibits the most geochemically extreme lava compositions along a region where many geophysical parameters (volcanic propagation rate, magmatic flux, mantle potential temperature) were changing significantly2,5. At a broader scale, correlation between radiogenic Pb and magmatic flux suggests source composition may control some of these changes, and help explain why the Hawaiian mantle plume seems to be strengthening5 rather than waning like classic plumes and LIPs. 1Regelous et al., 2003, J. Pet., 44, 1, 113-140. 2Garcia et al., 2015, GSA Sp. Pap. 511. 3Tanaka et al., 2008, EPSL, 265, 450-465. 4Weis et al., 2011, Nat. Geosci., 4, 831-838. 5Vidal & Bonneville, 2004, J. Geophy. Res., 109.

  9. Time-dependent convection models of mantle thermal structure constrained by seismic tomography and geodynamics: implications for mantle plume dynamics and CMB heat flux

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Glišović, P.; Forte, A. M.; Moucha, R.

    2012-08-01

    surface plates and a rigid surface. The thermal interpretation of seismic tomography models does not provide a radial profile of the horizontally averaged temperature (i.e. the geotherm) in the mantle. One important goal of this study is to obtain a steady-state geotherm with boundary layers which satisfies energy balance of the system and provides the starting point for more realistic numerical simulations of the Earth's evolution. We obtain surface heat flux in the range of Earth-like values : 37 TW for a rigid surface and 44 TW for a surface with tectonic plates coupled to the mantle flow. Also, our convection simulations deliver CMB heat flux that is on the high end of previously estimated values, namely 13 TW and 20 TW, for rigid and plate-like surface boundary conditions, respectively. We finally employ these two end-member surface boundary conditions to explore the very-long-time scale evolution of convection over billion-year time windows. These billion-year-scale simulations will allow us to determine the extent to which a 'memory' of the starting tomography-based thermal structure is preserved and hence to explore the longevity of the structures in the present-day mantle. The two surface boundary conditions, along with the geodynamically inferred radial viscosity profiles, yield steady-state convective flows that are dominated by long wavelengths throughout the lower mantle. The rigid-surface condition yields a spectrum of mantle heterogeneity dominated by spherical harmonic degree 3 and 4, and the plate-like surface condition yields a pattern dominated by degree 1. Our exploration of the time-dependence of the spatial heterogeneity shows that, for both types of surface boundary condition, deep-mantle hot upwellings resolved in the present-day tomography model are durable and stable features. These deeply rooted mantle plumes show remarkable longevity over very long geological time spans, mainly owing to the geodynamically inferred high viscosity in the lower

  10. Tracking the Tristan-Gough Mantle Plume Using Discrete Chains of Intraplate Volcanic Centers Buried in the Walvis Ridge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O'Connor, John; Jokat, Wilfried; Wijbrans, Jan

    2016-04-01

    Explanations for hotspot trails range from deep mantle plumes rising from the core-mantle boundary (CMB) to shallow plate cracking. Such mechanisms cannot explain uniquely the scattered hotspot trails distributed across a 2,000-km-wide swell in the sea floor of the southeast Atlantic Ocean. While these hotspot trails formed synchronously, in a pattern consistent with movement of the African Plate over plumes rising from the edge of the African LLSVP, their distribution is controlled by the interplay between plumes and the motion and structure of the African Plate (O'Connor et al. 2012). A significant challenge is to establish how the vigor and flow of hotspot material to the mid-ocean ridge constructed the Walvis Ridge. 40Ar/39Ar stratigraphy for three sites across the central Walvis Ridge sampled by Ocean Drilling (DSDP Leg 74) (Rohde et al., 2013; O'Connor & Jokat 2015a) indicates an apparent inverse relation between the volume flux of hotspot volcanism and the distance between the mid-ocean ridge and the Tristan-Gough hotspot. Moreover, since ˜93 Ma the geometry and motion of the mid-ocean ridge determined where hotspot material was channeled to the plate surface to build the Walvis Ridge. Interplay between hotspot flow, and the changing geometry of the mid-ocean ridge as it migrated relative to the Tristan-Gough hotspot, might explain much of the age and morphology of the Walvis Ridge. Thus, tracking the location of the Tristan-Gough plume might not be practicable if most of the complex morphology of the massive Walvis Ridge is related to the proximity of the South Atlantic mid-ocean ridge. But 40Ar/39Ar basement ages for the Tristan-Gough hotspot track (Rohde et al., 2013; O'Connor & Jokat 2015b), together with information about morphology and crustal structure from new swath maps and seismic profiles, suggest that separated age-progressive intraplate segments track the location of the Tristan-Gough mantle plume. The apparent continuity of the inferred age

  11. Tracking the Tristan-Gough Mantle Plume Using Discrete Chains of Intraplate Volcanic Centers Buried in the Walvis Ridge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O'Connor, J. M.; Jokat, W.; Wijbrans, J. R.

    2015-12-01

    Explanations for hotspot trails range from deep mantle plumes rising from the core-mantle boundary (CMB) to shallow plate cracking. Such mechanisms cannot explain uniquely the scattered hotspot trails distributed across a 2,000-km-wide swell in the sea floor of the southeast Atlantic Ocean. While these hotspot trails formed synchronously, in a pattern consistent with movement of the African Plate over plumes rising from the edge of the African LLSVP, their distribution is controlled by the interplay between plumes and the motion and structure of the African Plate (O'Connor et al., 2012). A significant challenge is to establish how the vigor and flow of hotspot material to the mid-ocean ridge constructed the Walvis Ridge. 40Ar/39Ar ages for three sites across the central Walvis Ridge sampled by Ocean Drilling (DSDP Leg 74) (Rohde et al., 2013; O'Connor and Jokat, 2015a) indicate an apparent inverse relation between the volume flux of hotspot volcanism and the distance between the mid-ocean ridge and the Tristan-Gough hotspot. Moreover, since ca. 93 Ma the geometry and motion of the mid-ocean ridge determined where hotspot material was channeled to the plate surface to build the Walvis Ridge. Interplay between hotspot flow, and the changing geometry of the mid-ocean ridge as it migrated relative to the Tristan-Gough hotspot, might explain much of the age and morphology of the Walvis Ridge. Thus, tracking the location of the Tristan-Gough plume might not be practicable if most of the complex morphology of the massive Walvis Ridge is related to the proximity of the South Atlantic mid-ocean ridge. But 40Ar/39Ar basement ages for the Tristan-Gough hotspot track (Rohde et al., 2013; O'Connor and Jokat, 2015b), together with information about morphology and crustal structure from new swath maps and seismic profiles, suggest that separated age-progressive intraplate segments track the location of the Tristan-Gough mantle plume. The apparent continuity of the inferred age

  12. Recycling of crustal material by the Iceland mantle plume: New evidence from nitrogen elemental and isotope systematics of subglacial basalts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Halldórsson, Sæmundur A.; Hilton, David R.; Barry, Peter H.; Füri, Evelyn; Grönvold, Karl

    2016-03-01

    We report new nitrogen (N2) abundance and isotope (δ15N) data for 43 subglacial basaltic glasses from the neovolcanic zones of Iceland, a key locality in studies of mantle plume geochemistry and crust-mantle processes. New helium and argon abundance and isotope data are also reported to supplement previous studies (Füri et al., 2010; Barry et al., 2014), allowing elemental ratios (e.g., N2/40Ar∗ where 40Ar∗ = radiogenic 40Ar) to be calculated. Subglacial basaltic glasses with N2 > 2 μcm3 STP/g show a wide range in δ15N values, from -2.91 to +11.96‰ (vs. Air), with values >6‰ only observed at one locality in the Eastern Rift Zone. Elemental ratios involving N2, i.e., N2/3He, and N2/40Ar∗, span several orders of magnitude from 2.5 × 105 to 9.0 × 107, and 32.8 to 1.46 × 106, respectively. In contrast, argon isotope ratios (40Ar/36Ar) are limited, ranging from air-like (∼298.6) values up to 1330. Glasses exhibit a wide range in helium isotope ratios (8-26 RA), with clear distinctions between individual rift segments. A number of processes have extensively modified original mantle source N isotope and relative abundance compositions - most significantly air interaction, crustal contamination in some instances, and possibly degassing-induced fractionation. Under the assumption that the starting 4He/40Ar∗ production ratio of Iceland mantle is identical to the depleted MORB mantle (DMM), a filtering protocol for the entire N dataset, based upon 40Ar/36Ar and 4He/40Ar∗ ratios, was adopted to identify samples with unmodified δ15N values. Consequently, we identify 22 samples that define the Icelandic mantle N-isotope distribution (δ15N = -2.29 to +5.71‰). Using the filtered dataset, we investigate simple binary mixing scenarios involving N2/3He-N2/40Ar∗-δ15N variations to identify mantle end-member compositions. Mixing scenarios are consistent with a recycled component in the Iceland mantle source, defined by a high and heterogeneous δ15N end

  13. Mantle plumes - A boundary layer approach for Newtonian and non-Newtonian temperature-dependent rheologies. [modeling for island chains and oceanic aseismic ridges

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yuen, D. A.; Schubert, G.

    1976-01-01

    Stress is placed on the temperature dependence of both a linear Newtonian rheology and a nonlinear olivine rheology in accounting for narrow mantle flow structures. The boundary-layer theory developed incorporates an arbitrary temperature-dependent power-law rheology for the medium, in order to facilitate the study of mantle plume dynamics under real conditions. Thermal, kinematic, and dynamic structures of mantle plumes are modelled by a two-dimensional natural-convection boundary layer rising in a fluid with a temperature-dependent power-law relationship between shear stress and strain rate. An analytic similarity solution is arrived at for upwelling adjacent to a vertical isothermal stress-free plane. Newtonian creep as a deformation mechanism, thermal anomalies resulting from chemical heterogeneity, the behavior of plumes in non-Newtonian (olivine) mantles, and differences in the dynamics of wet and dry olivine are discussed.

  14. Laboratory models of three-dimensional mantle flow: Implications on Northwest U.S. volcanism for plume and non-plume sources (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Druken, K. A.; Kincaid, C. R.; Griffiths, R. W.

    2009-12-01

    We present results from laboratory modeling addressing the question of whether a plume is required for reconciling the existing data sets of the Cascade subduction system in the Northwest U.S. Three-dimensional analog models are used to map the spatial and temporal patterns of subduction-induced upwelling associated with decompression melting. A series of experiments with varied combinations of down-dip, rollback and steepening plate motions, as well as extension in the overriding plate, were run with particle tracking techniques to focus on vertical velocities (e.g. favorable to decompression melting) in the mantle wedge. An overriding plate with varied depth is also incorporated to the model in order to more accurately approximate the lithosphere structure of the Northwest U.S. Glucose syrup, with a temperature dependent viscosity, and a phenolic plate were used to model the upper mantle and subducting plate, respectively. Hydraulic pistons control longitudinal, translational and steepening motions of the slab as a simplified kinematic approach to mimic dynamic experiments. Results show that the strongest vertical velocities occur in response to the onset of trench retreat and extension of the overriding plate, independent of the lithospheric “bottom topography”, with the largest occurring when there is an asymmetric style of extension. Spatial and temporal melt patterns mapped from these upwelling events, in addition to experiments with a buoyant plume source, are compared with the Northwest U.S. volcanism over the last 20 Ma. Preliminary results show non-plume melt patterns initially follow a trench parallel (north/south) orientation, which is progressively distorted trench-normal (east/west) with continued rollback subduction.

  15. Transition of Mount Etna lavas from a mantle-plume to an island-arc magmatic source.

    PubMed

    Schiano, P; Clocchiatti, R; Ottolini, L; Busà, T

    2001-08-30

    Mount Etna lies near the boundary between two regions that exhibit significantly different types of volcanism. To the north, volcanism in the Aeolian island arc is thought to be related to subduction of the Ionian lithosphere. On Sicily itself, however, no chemical or seismological evidence of subduction-related volcanism exists, and so it is thought that the volcanism-including that on Mount Etna itself-stems from the upwelling of mantle material, associated with various surface tectonic processes. But the paucity of geological evidence regarding the primary composition of magma from Mount Etna means that its source characteristics remain controversial. Here we characterize the trace-element composition of a series of lavas emitted by Mount Etna over the past 500 kyr and preserved as melt inclusions inside olivine phenocrysts. We show that the compositional change in primary magmas from Mount Etna reflects a progressive transition from a predominantly mantle-plume source to one with a greater contribution from island-arc (subduction-related) basalts. We suggest that this is associated with southward migration of the Ionian slab, which is becoming juxtaposed with a mantle plume beneath Sicily. This implies that the volcanism of Mount Etna has become more calc-alkaline, and hence more explosive, during its evolution.

  16. Receiver function imaging of the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary and melt beneath the Afar Rift in comparison to other systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rychert, Catherine A.; Harmon, Nicholas

    2015-04-01

    Heating, melting, and stretching destroy continents at volcanic rifts. Mantle plumes are often invoked to thermally weaken the continental lithosphere and accommodate rifting through the influx of magma. However the relative effects of mechanical stretching vs. melt infiltration and weakening are not well quantified during the evolution of rifting. S-to-p (Sp) imaging beneath the Afar Rift provides additional constraints. We use two methodologies to investigate structure and locate robust features: 1) binning by conversion point and then simultaneous deconvolution in the frequency domain, and 2) extended multitaper followed by migration and stacking. We image a lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary at ~75 km beneath the flank of the Afar Rift vs. its complete absence beneath the rift. Instead, a strong velocity increase with depth at ~75 km depth is imaged. Beneath the rift axis waveform modeling suggests the lack of a mantle lithosphere with a velocity increase at ~75 km depth. Geodynamic models that include high melt retention and suppress thermal convection easily match the required velocity-depth profile, the velocity increase arising from a drop in melt percentage at the onset of decompression melting. Whereas, models with conservative melt retention that include thermal buoyancy effects cannot reproduce the strong velocity increase. The shallow depth of the onset of melting is consistent with a mantle potential temperature = 1350 - 1400°C, i.e., typical for adiabatic decompression melting. Trace element signatures and geochemical modeling have been used to argue for a thick lithosphere beneath the rift and slightly higher mantle potential temperatures ~1450°C, although overall, given modeling assumptions, the results are not in disagreement. Therefore, although a plume initially destroyed the mantle lithosphere, its influence directly beneath Afar today is not strong. Volcanism continues via adiabatic decompression melting assisted by strong melt buoyancy

  17. Convection experiments in a centrifuge and the generation of plumes in a very viscous fluid. [for earth mantle models

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nataf, H.-C.; Hager, B. H.; Scott, R. F.

    1984-01-01

    In this paper, experiments are described for which inertial effects are negligible. A small aspect-ratio tank filled with a very viscous fluid (Pr = 10 to the 6th) is used to observe the behavior of convection for Rayleigh numbers up to 6.3 x 10 to the 5th. These high values are reached by conducting the experiment in a centrifuge which provides a 130-fold increase in apparent gravity. Rotational effects are small, but cannot be totally dismissed. In this geometry, thermal boundary layer instabilities are indeed observed, and are found to be very similar to their lower Prandtl number counterparts. It is tentatively concluded that once given a certain degree of 'vulnerability' convection can develop 'plume' like instabilities, even when the Prandtl number is infinite. The concept is applied to the earth's mantle and it is speculated that 'plumes' could well be the dominant mode of small-scale convection under the lithospheric plates.

  18. Long-lived postbreakup magmatism along the East Greenland margin: Evidence for shallow-mantle metasomatism by the Iceland plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Storey, M.; Pedersen, A. K.; Stecher, O.; Bernstein, S.; Larsen, H. C.; Larsen, L. M.; Baker, J. A.; Duncan, R. A.

    2004-02-01

    40Ar/39Ar dating has identified a succession of middle Miocene (14 13 Ma) basaltic lavas in East Greenland that overlie Eocene flood basalts that were erupted during continental breakup ca. 56 55 Ma. The long postbreakup magmatic history (˜40 m.y.) of the East Greenland margin precludes a simple relationship between this later igneous activity and the track of the Iceland hotspot. Chemical and isotopic data suggest that the postbreakup magmas were produced from mantle that had been metasomatized by light rare earth element enriched, H2O- and CO2-bearing melts originating from the Iceland plume. Episodic melting of recently metasomatized shallow mantle beneath Greenland and the North Atlantic can explain both the composition and the long-lived nature of postbreakup magmatism along the East Greenland margin, as well as lavas on Jan Mayen Island that have enriched, Icelandic-type isotopic signatures.

  19. Are high 3He/4He ratios in oceanic basalts an indicator of deep-mantle plume components?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Meibom, A.; Anderson, D.L.; Sleep, N.H.; Frei, R.; Chamberlain, C.P.; Hren, M.T.; Wooden, J.L.

    2003-01-01

    The existence of a primordial, undegassed lower mantle reservoir characterized by high concentration of 3He and high 3He/4He ratios is a cornerstone assumption in modern geochemistry. It has become standard practice to interpret high 3He/4He ratios in oceanic basalts as a signature of deep-rooted plumes. The unfiltered He isotope data set for oceanic spreading centers displays a wide, nearly Gaussian, distribution qualitatively similar to the Os isotope (187Os/188 Os) distribution of mantle-derived Os-rich alloys. We propose that both distributions are produced by shallow mantle processes involving mixing between different proportions of recycled, variably aged radiogenic and unradiogenic domains under varying degrees of partial melting. In the case of the Re-Os isotopic system, radiogenic mid-ocean ridge basalt (MORB)-rich and unradiogenic (depleted mantle residue) endmembers are constantly produced during partial melting events. In the case of the (U+Th)-He isotope system, effective capture of He-rich bubbles during growth of phenocryst olivine in crystallizing magma chambers provides one mechanism for 'freezing in' unradiogenic (i.e. high 3He/4He) He isotope ratios, while the higher than chondritic (U+Th)/He elemental ratio in the evolving and partially degassed MORB melt provides the radiogenic (i.e. low 3He/4He) endmember. If this scenario is correct, the use of He isotopic signatures as a fingerprint of plume components in oceanic basalts is not justified. Published by Elsevier Science B.V.

  20. Implications for Long-Term Mantle History of the Restricted Distribution of Large Igneous Province (LIP) Plume Sources at the Core-Mantle Boundary (CMB)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burke, K.; Steinberger, B.; Torsvik, T. H.; Smethurst, M. A.

    2008-12-01

    We have found, by rotation of LIPs of the past 300 My to their eruption sites in a paleomagnetic reference frame corrected for true polar wander, that those sites concentrate vertically above the margins at the CMB of the two Large Low Shear Wave Velocity Provinces(LLSVPs) of the deep mantle (Torsvik et al. 2006). This surprising discovery of narrow (< 200 wide) Plume Generation Zones stable for at least 300 My on the CMB at the LLSVP margins is consistent with the idea that the LLSVPs are compositionally (and probably also thermally) distinct dense bodies (each making up ca. 1 percent of mantle mass) rather than thermally buoyant "superplumes". The "centers of mass" of the two LLSVPs are antipodally disposed close to the equator, an intriguing possible further indication of long-term stability because the positively elevated part of the residual geoid, which matches the LLSVPs and therefore also appears also to have been stable for at least 300 My finds an analog in the aeroid of Mars of which the elevated regions are themselves antipodal on the equator. Because some volcanoes of Mars perhaps > 3.8 My in age are concentrated on the rims of the elevated aeroid it is worth considering the implications of the possible isolation of the LLSVPs from the rest of the mantle through most of Earth history. If the 2 percent of mantle mass that makes the LLSVPs has escaped being involved in making ocean floor it will be more Fe rich and denser than the average mantle. If it has also escaped being involved in making continent it will be richer in U,Th and K and hotter. It will have distinctive noble gas concentrations and could be the source (by diffusion) of the Earth's current 3He flux (Burke et al. 2008). If a velocity change attributable to a perovskite/post-perovskite transition can be mapped consistently both within and outside the LLSVPs it will help in testing the idea that the interiors of LLSVPs are hotter than the rest of the deep mantle.

  1. Plume Capture by Divergent Plate Motions: Implications for the Distribution of Hotspots, Geochemistry of Mid-Ocean Ridge Basalts, and Heat Flux from the Core-Mantle Boundary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jellinek, A. M.; Richards, M. A.

    2001-12-01

    The coexistence of mantle plumes with plate-scale flow is problematic in geodynamics. Significant problems include the fixity of hotspots with respect to plate motions, the spatial distribution and duration of hotspots, the geophysical and geochemical signatures of plume-ridge interactions, and the relation between mantle plumes and heat flux across the core-mantle boundary. We present results from laboratory experiments aimed at understanding the effects of an imposed large-scale circulation on thermal convection at high Rayleigh number (up to 109) in a fluid with a strongly temperature-dependent viscosity. In a large tank, a layer of corn syrup is heated from below while being stirred by large-scale flow due to the opposing motions of a pair of conveyor belts immersed in the syrup at the top of the tank. Three regimes are observed, depending on the velocity ratio V of the imposed horizontal flow velocity to the rise velocity of plumes ascending from the hot boundary. When V<<1, large scale circulation has a negligible effect and convective upwelling occurs as randomly-spaced axisymmetric plumes that interact with one another. When V>10, plume instabilities are suppressed entirely and the heat flux from the hot lower boundary is carried by a central sheet-like upwelling. At intermediate V, ascending plumes are advected along the bottom boundary layer, and the heat flux from the boundary is found to scale (according to a simple boundary layer theory) with V and the ratio of the viscosity of cold fluid above the thermal boundary layer to the viscosity of the hottest fluid in contact with the bottom boundary. For large viscosity ratios (10-100), only about 1/5th or less of the total heat flux from the hot boundary layer is carried by plume instabilities, even for modest imposed horizontal flow velocities (V of order 1). When applied to Earth, our results suggest that plate-scale flow focuses ascending mantle plumes toward mid-ocean ridges, and that plumes may be

  2. Helium isotopes in early Iceland plume picrites: Constraints on the composition of high 3He/ 4He mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Starkey, Natalie A.; Stuart, Finlay M.; Ellam, Robert M.; Fitton, J. Godfrey; Basu, Sudeshna; Larsen, Lotte M.

    2009-01-01

    A detailed study of the geochemistry of a new suite of early Iceland plume picrites shows that extremely high 3He/ 4He ratios (up to 50 Ra) are found in picrites from Baffin Island and West Greenland. High 3He/ 4He picrites display a wide range in 87Sr/ 86Sr (0.70288-0.70403), 143Nd/ 144Nd (0.51288-0.51308) and incompatible trace element ratios (e.g. La/Sm n = 0.5-1.6). These overlap the complete range of compositions of mid-ocean ridge basalts and most northern hemisphere ocean island basalts, including Iceland. Crustal contamination modelling in which high-grade Proterozoic crustal basement rocks for the region are mixed with a depleted parent cannot account for the trend displayed by the Baffin Island and West Greenland picrites. This rules out the possibility that the incompatible trace element, Sr and Nd isotope range of the high 3He/ 4He picrites is due to crustal contamination. The compositional range at high 3He/ 4He is also inconsistent with derivation from a primordial-He-rich reservoir that is a residue of ancient mantle depletion. This implies that the composition of the high 3He/ 4He mantle cannot be determined simply by extrapolating ocean island basalt He-Sr-Nd-Pb-Os isotope data. The apparent decoupling of He from trace element and lithophile radiogenic isotope tracers is difficult to attain by simple mixing of a high-[He], high 3He/ 4He reservoir with various depleted and enriched He-poor mantle reservoirs. The possibility that primordial He has diffused into a reservoir with a composition typical of convecting upper mantle cannot be ruled out. If so, the process must have occurred after the development of existing mantle heterogeneity, and requires the existence of a deep, primordial He-rich reservoir.

  3. An optical method for measuring temperature in laboratory models of mantle plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Laudenbach, N.; Christensen, U. R.

    2001-05-01

    We present a method for measuring radial temperature profiles in laboratory thermal plumes using the deflection of a laser beam that passes through the fluid. Plumes are created by injecting hot corn syrup into a column of cold syrup at a well-defined rate. Every second a new radial temperature profile can be taken, which makes the method suitable for monitoring time-dependent phenomena. We compare the thermal structure of stationary plume conduits and of propagating solitary waves with numerical results obtained with a 2-D axisymmetric convection code. The agreement is excellent and shows that accurate high-resolution temperature profiles can be obtained without perturbing the flow.

  4. On the relationship between tectonic plates and thermal mantle plume morphology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lenardic, A.; Kaula, W. M.

    1993-01-01

    Models incorporating plate-like behavior, i.e., near uniform surface velocity and deformation concentrated at plate boundaries, into a convective system, heated by a mix of internal and basal heating and allowing for temperature dependent viscosity, were constructed and compared to similar models not possessing plate-like behavior. The simplified numerical models are used to explore how plate-like behavior in a convective system can effect the lower boundary layer from which thermal plumes form. A principal conclusion is that plate-like behavior can significantly increase the temperature drop across the lower thermal boundary layer. This temperature drop affects the morphology of plumes by determining the viscosity drop across the boundary layer. Model results suggest that plumes on planets possessing plate-like behavior, e.g., the Earth, may differ in morphologic type from plumes on planets not possessing plate-like behavior, e.g., Venus and Mars.

  5. Co-location of eruption sites of the Siberian Traps and North Atlantic Igneous Province: Implications for the nature of hotspots and mantle plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smirnov, Aleksey V.; Tarduno, John A.

    2010-09-01

    One of the striking exceptions to the mantle plume head-tail hypothesis that seeks to explain magmatism of large igneous provinces (LIPs) and hotspot tracks is the ~250 million-year-old Siberian Traps. The lack of a clear hotspot track linked to this LIP has been one motivation to explore non-plume alternative mechanisms. Here, we use a paleomagnetic Euler pole analysis to constrain the location of the Siberian Traps at the time of their eruption. The reconstructed position coincides with the mantle region that also saw eruption of the ~ 61-58 million year-old North Atlantic Igneous Province (NAIP). Together with LIP volume estimates, this reconstruction poses a dilemma for some non-plume models: the partial-melts needed to account for the Siberian Traps should have depleted the enriched upper mantle source that is in turn crucial for the later formation of the NAIP. The observations instead suggest the existence of a long-lived (>250 million-year-long) lower mantle chemical and/or thermal anomaly, and significant temporal changes in mantle plume flux.

  6. Impact of a fixed Siberian Traps mantle plume on the tectonics of the Arctic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lawver, L. A.; Norton, I. O.; Gahagan, L.

    2012-12-01

    Eruption of the Siberian Traps at the Permo-Triassic boundary [~250 Ma] produced more than 3 x 106 km3 of rapidly emplaced magma throughout a region ~2.5 x 106 km2 in extent. Dates from the New Siberian Islands of 252 ± 2 Ma (Kuzmichev & Pease, 2007) indicate that Siberian Trap-related magmas are found ~500 km to the east of where they are generally shown to terminate to the west of the Lena River. Cenozoic opening of the Eurasian Basin would account for some of this discrepancy. A Siberian Trap mantle plume in an absolute reference frame fixed to the present day location of the Iceland hot spot, tracks through time across the Taimyr Peninsula region during the Late Triassic period and then to north of the Severnaya Zemlya archipelago by the end of the Middle Jurassic. With the exception of some Middle Triassic dates from the Taimyr Peninsula there is no apparent expression of a hot spot track during the this period. Motion of Laurasia in a paleomagnetically controlled reference frame has the Franz Josef Land archipelago over the fixed hotspot from about 155 Ma to 147 Ma prior to the early phase of the High Arctic Large Igneous Province [HALIP], generally taken to be 130 Ma to 120 Ma. Campsie et al (1988) have one date of 145 Ma from samples collected by Fridthof Nansen in 1895-1896 on Solsberi Island. Dibner et al (1988) have a dozen ages from dolerite samples from various islands spanning the period 175 ±12 Ma to 138 ±10 Ma with five of them between 158 Ma to 144 Ma. During the Late Jurassic into the earliest Cretaceous the track of the fixed hotspot follows the future margin of the Barents Shelf just inboard of a reconstructed Lomonosov Ridge. By the end of the Valanginian, the hotspot tracks curves slightly, mimicking the southern curve of the Lomonosov Ridge off North America. The early phase of the HALIP moves the region of the northern Ellesmere Island over the hotspot while forming the Mendeleev and Alpha ridges. By middle Albian time, the Siberian Traps

  7. Searching for Seismic Signatures of a Plume Source at the Base of the Mantle Below the Galapagos Island Hotspot

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vanacore, E.; Niu, F.

    2007-12-01

    , in the Northeast portion of the sampled region bounded to the south and west at approximately \\m-3°S and \\m267° longitude. While the residual differential travel times and the anisotropy measurements do not conclusively show that there is a mantle plume source at the base of the mantle in this region, the data does indicate there the lower mantle beneath the Galapagos Islands has significant structure meriting further study.

  8. Tungsten isotope evidence that mantle plumes contain no contribution from the Earth's core.

    PubMed

    Scherstén, Anders; Elliott, Tim; Hawkesworth, Chris; Norman, Marc

    2004-01-15

    Osmium isotope ratios provide important constraints on the sources of ocean-island basalts, but two very different models have been put forward to explain such data. One model interprets (187)Os-enrichments in terms of a component of recycled oceanic crust within the source material. The other model infers that interaction of the mantle with the Earth's outer core produces the isotope anomalies and, as a result of coupled (186)Os-(187)Os anomalies, put time constraints on inner-core formation. Like osmium, tungsten is a siderophile ('iron-loving') element that preferentially partitioned into the Earth's core during core formation but is also 'incompatible' during mantle melting (it preferentially enters the melt phase), which makes it further depleted in the mantle. Tungsten should therefore be a sensitive tracer of core contributions in the source of mantle melts. Here we present high-precision tungsten isotope data from the same set of Hawaiian rocks used to establish the previously interpreted (186)Os-(187)Os anomalies and on selected South African rocks, which have also been proposed to contain a core contribution. None of the samples that we have analysed have a negative tungsten isotope value, as predicted from the core-contribution model. This rules out a simple core-mantle mixing scenario and suggests that the radiogenic osmium in ocean-island basalts can better be explained by the source of such basalts containing a component of recycled crust.

  9. A search for 142Nd evidence of primordial mantle heterogeneities in plume basalts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boyet, Maud; Garcia, Michael O.; Pik, Raphaël; Albarède, Francis

    2005-02-01

    In order to assess whether material differentiated shortly after terrestrial accretion is still present in the deep mantle, we investigated hot spot basalts for 142Nd/144Nd anomalies that could attest for the presence of live 146Sm (T1/2 = 103 My) at the time the mantle source of these basalts formed. We analyzed high 3He/4He basalts from Loihi and Ethiopia and normal 3He/4He basalts from Iceland. Although the 143Nd/144Nd ratios of these basalts reflect a source with long-term LREE (light rare earth elements) depletion, no resolvable 142Nd anomalies were detected. Taking the analytical uncertainties (10-20 ppm) into account, however, the present results do not rule out the possibility that a large proportion of material fractionated very early in the Earth's history may still be hidden in the deep mantle.

  10. Understanding the nature of mantle upwelling beneath East-Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Civiero, Chiara; Hammond, James; Goes, Saskia; Ahmed, Abdulhakim; Ayele, Atalay; Doubre, Cecile; Goitom, Berhe; Keir, Derek; Kendall, Mike; Leroy, Sylvie; Ogubazghi, Ghebrebrhan; Rumpker, Georg; Stuart, Graham

    2014-05-01

    The concept of hot upwelling material - otherwise known as mantle plumes - has long been accepted as a possible mechanism to explain hotspots occurring at Earth's surface and it is recognized as a way of removing heat from the deep Earth. Nevertheless, this theory remains controversial since no one has definitively imaged a plume and over the last decades several other potential mechanisms that do not require a deep mantle source have been invoked to explain this phenomenon, for example small-scale convection at rifted margins, meteorite impacts or lithospheric delamination. One of the best locations to study the potential connection between hotspot volcanism at the surface and deep mantle plumes on land is the East African Rift (EAR). We image seismic velocity structure of the mantle below EAR with higher resolution than has been available to date by including seismic data recorded by stations from many regional networks ranging from Saudi Arabia to Tanzania. We use relative travel-time tomography to produce P- velocity models from the surface down into the lower mantle incorporating 9250 ray-paths in our model from 495 events and 402 stations. We add smaller earthquakes (4.5 < mb < 5.5) from poorly sampled regions in order to have a more uniform data coverage. The tomographic results allow us to image structures of ~ 100-km length scales to ~ 1000 km depth beneath the northern East-Africa rift (Ethiopia, Eritrea, Djibouti, Yemen) with good resolution also in the transition zone and uppermost lower mantle. Our observations provide evidence that the shallow mantle slow seismic velocities continue trough the transition zone and into the lower mantle. In particular, the relatively slow velocity anomaly beneath the Afar Depression extends up to depths of at least 1000 km depth while another low-velocity anomaly beneath the Main Ethiopian Rift seems to be present in the upper mantle only. These features in the lower mantle are isolated with a diameter of about 400 km

  11. Is the track of the Yellowstone hotspot driven by a deep mantle plume? -- Review of volcanism, faulting, and uplift in light of new data

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pierce, Kenneth L.; Morgan, Lisa A.

    2009-01-01

    Both the belts of faulting and the YCHT are asymmetrical across the volcanic hotspot track, flaring out 1.6 times more on the south than the north side. This and the southeast tilt of the Yellowstone plume may reflect southeast flow of the upper mantle.

  12. Surface plates and thermal plumes - Separate scales of the mantle convective circulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peltier, W. R.

    In reviewing the problem of mantle convection, emphasis is placed on several recent developments from the theory of convection itself, from studies of mantle viscosity using postglacial rebound data, and from geochemistry. This recent work is seen as demonstrating that most of the observations that can be employed to constrain models of the convective circulation lend themselves to a satisfactory explanation by the simple whole mantle model. It is noted that this conceptual model has been strongly reinforced by the recent geochemical consensus that the earth contains far too little radioactivity to explain the currently observed surface heat flow. The difference between the rate of radioactive heat supply and the surface heat loss should be made up principally by the secular cooling of the planet. This scenario is seen as having the additional attractive feature that it immediately provides the energy to the core that is necessary to power the geodynamo. As the planet cools, the inner core grows and thereby drives a chemical convective circulation that Loper and Roberts (1981) have most recently argued to be an extremely efficient means of generating a magnetic field. The hypothesis of whole mantle convection is seen as reconciling most of the existing observations.

  13. Low velocities in the oceanic upper mantle and their relation to plumes: insights from SEM-based waveform tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lekic, V.; French, S. W.; Romanowicz, B. A.

    2013-12-01

    into several vertically coherent "conduits", the most prominent under Hawaii and the Pacific superswell, where they appear to be rooted in the lower mantle. These conduits have complex shapes, in particular, the one associated with Hawaii undulates as it "rises", and is deflected towards the ridge as it reaches the bottom of the "fingering" layer. Individual hotspots do not lie immediately above the conduits but in their general vicinity. Nor are the fingers always associated with prominent hotspots. This morphology in the top 400 km of the oceanic mantle suggests the presence of a complex dynamic interplay between plate-driven flow just below the lithosphere, return flow directed toward the ridges, and influx from the deep plume conduits.

  14. The Quaternary volcanic rocks of the northern Afar Depression (northern Ethiopia): Perspectives on petrology, geochemistry, and tectonics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hagos, Miruts; Koeberl, Christian; van Wyk de Vries, Benjamin

    2016-05-01

    The northern Afar Depression is one of the most volcano-tectonically active parts of the East African Rift system, a place where oceanic rifting may be beginning to form an incipient oceanic crust. In its center, over an area that is ∼80 km long and ∼50 km wide, there are seven major NNW-SSE-aligned shield volcanoes/volcanic edifices surrounded by compositionally distinct fissure-fed basalts. The Quaternary lavas in this area range from transitional to tholeiitic basalts, with significant across-axis variation both in mineralogy and chemistry. The variation in the contents of the major elements (TiO2, Al2O3, and Fe2O3), incompatible trace elements (Nd, Hf, Th, Ta), and the contents and ratios of the rare earth elements (REE) (e.g., (La/Yb)n = 5.3-8.9) indicate some variation in the petrogenetic processes responsible for the formation of these basalts. However, the variation in isotopic compositions of the mafic lavas is minimal (87Sr/86Sr = 0.7036-0.7041, 143Nd/144Nd = 0.51286-0.51289), which suggests only one source for all the Danakil Depression basalts. These basalts have isotope and incompatible trace element ratios that overlap with those of the Oligocene High-Ti2 flood basalts from the Ethiopian Plateau, interpreted as being derived from the last phase/tail of the Afar mantle plume source. Moreover, the Ce/Pb, Ba/U ratios indicate that the involvement of continental crust in the petrogenesis of the basaltic rocks is minimal; instead, both depth and degree of melting of the source reservoir underneath the northern Afar Depression played a major role for the production of incompatible element-enriched basalts (e.g., AleBagu Shield basalts) and the incompatible element-depleted tholeiitic basalts (e.g., Erta'Ale and Alu Shield basalts).

  15. Afar and ERTS-1 imagery

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mohr, P. A. (Principal Investigator)

    1972-01-01

    The author has identified the following significant results. The excellent ERTS-1 imagery of the Afar region of Ethiopia permits a preliminary revision to the analysis of the structures of this triple-rift junction, and also revisions to the outcrops of some lithological formations. The fault-belts of the Afar floor can now be mapped in fine detail. The Danakil horst is identified to be limited on its western side against Afar by a major fault-line, and it seems unlikely that the horst is the exposed, easterly portion of a west-dipping sialic block underlying all northern Afar. The Salt Plain appears to be a true graben. The Ethiopian plateau-Afar margin consists of a series of right-offset sectors, the offsets being marked by silicic volcanic centers. The nature of these offsets is related to the vexed question of cross-rift faulting. Such faulting is identifiable on the ERTS-1 imagery, both on the Afar floor, and in the monoclinally warped western margin. The significance of this faulting, though subordinate to the tensional faults of the fault-belts, awaits elucidation.

  16. New 40Ar / 39Ar age and geochemical data from seamounts in the Canary and Madeira volcanic provinces: Support for the mantle plume hypothesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Geldmacher, J.; Hoernle, K.; Bogaard, P. v. d.; Duggen, S.; Werner, R.

    2005-08-01

    The role of mantle plumes in the formation of intraplate volcanic islands and seamount chains is being increasingly questioned. Particular examples are the abundant and somewhat irregularly distributed island and seamount volcanoes off the coast of northwest Africa. New 40Ar / 39Ar ages and Sr-Nd-Pb isotope geochemistry of volcanic rocks from seamounts northeast of the Madeira Islands (Seine and Unicorn) and northeast of the Canary Islands (Dacia and Anika), however, provide support for the plume hypothesis. The oldest ages of shield stage volcanism from Canary and Madeira volcanic provinces confirm progressions of increasing age to the northeast. Average volcanic age progression of ∼1.2 cm/a is consistent with rotation of the African plate at an angular velocity of ∼0.20° ± 0.05 /Ma around a common Euler pole at approximately 56° N, 45° W computed for the period of 0-35 Ma. A Euler pole at 35° N, 45° W is calculated for the time interval of 35-64 Ma. The isotope geochemistry further confirms that the Madeira and Canary provinces are derived from different sources, consistent with distinct plumes having formed each volcanic group. Conventional hotspot models, however, cannot easily explain the up to 40 m.y. long volcanic history at single volcanic centers, long gaps in volcanic activity, and the irregular distribution of islands and seamounts in the Canary province. A possible explanation could involve interaction of the Canary mantle plume with small-scale upper mantle processes such as edge-driven convection. Juxtaposition of plume and non-plume volcanism could also account for observed inconsistencies of the classical hotspot concept in other volcanic areas.

  17. Petrogenesis of nephelinites from the Tarim Large Igneous Province, NW China: Implications for mantle source characteristics and plume-lithosphere interaction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, Zhiguo; Zhang, Zhaochong; Hou, Tong; Santosh, M.; Zhang, Dongyang; Ke, Shan

    2015-04-01

    The nephelinite exposed in the Wajilitage area in the northwestern margin of the Tarim large igneous province (TLIP), Xinjiang, NW China display porphyritic textures with clinopyroxene, nepheline and olivine as the major phenocryst phases, together with minor apatite, sodalite and alkali feldspar. The groundmass typically has cryptocrystalline texture and is composed of crystallites of clinopyroxene, nepheline, Fe-Ti oxides, sodalite, apatite, rutile, biotite, amphibole and alkali feldspar. We report rutile SIMS U-Pb age of 268 ± 30 Ma suggesting that the nephelinite may represent the last phase of the TLIP magmatism, which is also confirmed by the field relation. The nephelinite shows depleted Sr-Nd isotopic compositions with age-corrected 87Sr/86Sr and εNd(t) values of 0.70348-0.70371 and + 3.28 to + 3.88 respectively indicating asthenospheric mantle source. Based on the reconstructed primary melt composition, the depth of magma generation is estimated as 115-140 km and the temperatures of mantle melting as 1540-1575 °C. The hotter than normal asthenospheric mantle temperature suggests the involvement of mantle thermal plume. The Mg isotope values display a limited range of δ26Mg from - 0.35 to - 0.55‰, which are lower than the mantle values (- 0.25‰). The Mg isotopic compositions, combined with the Sr-Nd isotopes and major and trace element data suggest that the Wajilitage nephelinite was most likely generated by low-degree partial melting of the hybridized carbonated peridotite/eclogite source, which we correlate with metasomatism by subducted carbonates within the early-middle Paleozoic convergent regime. A plume-lithosphere model is proposed with slight thinning of the lithosphere and variable depth and degree of melting of the carbonated mantle during the plume-lithosphere interaction. This model also accounts for the variation in lithology of the TLIP.

  18. Double Mantle Plume Upwelling—A Possible Formation Mechanism of Beta Plateau and Devana Chasma,Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ding, N.

    2009-12-01

    Ning Ding,Zuoxun Zeng,China University of Geosciences,Wuhan,430074,China NingDing.eagle@gmail.com Introduction:Venus represents a‘one plate planet’[1],and the uplift,fractures and volcanism in Beta Regio on Venus are considered to be formed by lithosphere uplift driven by a hot plume[2]. Based on the double peaking saddle landform,we suggest the tectonic pattern of double mantle plume upwelling to interpret the formation mechanism of Beta Plateau and Devana Chasma.We take a physical modeling to validate this possibility. Model:There is no ductile shear in Venus[3],so we use quartz sands to simulate the crust of Venus.We use two wood stickes 1.5cm in diameter rising from the rubber canvas slowly and straight till about half of the model,then falling down slowly and straight.The base is a hard rubber plate,in the center of which,there are two holes 3cm in diameter,and the distance between them is 5cm.The holes are covered by rubber canvas.We use the quartz sands in colours of white, red and black with particle size of 70 mess as the model materials. Result:Fig.1:At the beginning of the wood stickes upwelling,only fine radial cracks are formed above the upwelling from central to outside.With the upwelling continue,surface energy of the fine radial cracks increase and make the cracks unstable,finally,the fine radial cracks connect each other and form a fracture zone.And then the two mantle plume downwelling,the fracture zone is developed to form a chasma at the end. Fig.2:The four profiles all form reverse faults outside and normal faults inside.But the difference is the faults in the middle of the chasma goes deeper than others.It is the pattern of Beta Plateau where the tectonic rising is cut by Devana Chasma zone in the topographic features. Fig.3:From the tow fig., we can see two points similar:a.the elevation is high and distribution area is large around the area of two upwelling and it is high around the area of chasma,but the distribution area is small

  19. Petrology and Geochronology of Kaula Volcano lavas: An off-axis window into the Hawaiian Mantle Plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garcia, M. O.; Weis, D.; Jicha, B. R.; Tree, J. P.; Bizimis, M.

    2014-12-01

    The Hawaiian Islands extend NW for 625 km from Lō'ihi to Ka'ula island. One anomalous feature cross-cutting the Hawaiian Islands is the Kaua'i Ridge, a 165 km-long bathymetric high with three well-defined gravity highs. These gravity highs are centered under or near the islands of Ka'ula, Ni'ihau and Kaua'i, and represent the cores of three shield volcanoes whose volumes decrease dramatically with distance from the axis of the Hawaiian Chain (Kaua'i, 58 x 103 km3, Ni'ihau x 103 km, Ka'ula 10 x 103 km; Robinson and Eakins 2006). Ka'ula Volcano, on the SW end of the Kaua'i Ridge, is centered 100 km off the axis of the Hawaiian mantle plume. The volcano is capped by a small island, which is a remnant of a nephelinitic tuff cone. The cone contains abundant accidental bombs of lava (tholeiite, phonolite and basanite), peridotite and pyroxenite, and unexploded ordnance from US military bombing. Two JASON dives on the flanks of Ka'ula recovered only alkalic lavas. Three stage of Ka'ula volcanism have been identified from sampling the volcanic bombs and flanks of the volcano. These rocks were dated using 40Ar/39Ar methods for the basalts and K-Ar for the phonolites. A tholeiitic shield basalt yielded an age of 6.2 Ma, the oldest reliable age for any Hawaiian Island tholeiite. Post-shield phonolites gave ages of 4.0 to 4.2 Ma (Garcia et al., 1986) and rejuvenation stage alkalic basalts yielded ages of 1.9 to 0.5 Ma. These ages are nearly identical to those for the same stages for adjacent Ni'ihau volcano but slightly older than on Kauai, 100 km to the NE (Sherrod et al. 2007). Thus, volcanism was nearly simultaneous along Kaua'i Ridge. The new age results extend to 420 km the distance within the Hawaiian Islands that experienced coeval rejuvenated volcanism. Geochemically, the rejuvenated and tholeiitic lavas from the Kaua'i Ridge are very similar with mixed source signatures of Loa and Kea trend compositions. Mixed Loa-Kea sources have been found for many other Hawaiian

  20. Garnet-bearing ultramafic rocks from the Dominican Republic: Fossil mantle plume fragments in an ultra high pressure oceanic complex?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gazel, Esteban; Abbott, Richard N.; Draper, Grenville

    2011-07-01

    Ultra high pressure (UHP) garnet-bearing ultramafic rocks from the Dominican Republic may represent the only known example where such rocks were exhumed at an ocean-ocean convergent plate boundary, and where the protolith crystallized from a UHP magma (> 3.2 GPa, > 1500 °C). This study focuses on the petrology and geochemistry of one of the ultramafic lithologies, the pegmatitic garnet-clinopyroxenite (garnet + clinopyroxene + spinel + corundum + hornblende). Three distinct types of garnet were recognized: Type-1 garnet (low Ca, high Mg) is interpreted as near magmatic (P > 3.2 GPa, > 1500 °C). Type-1‧ garnet (high Ca, low Mg) is interpreted as having formed approximately isochemically from magmatic high-Al clinopyroxene. Type-2 garnet (intermediate Ca, high Mg, and low Fe + Mn) formed together with hornblende as a result of late, low-pressure retrograde hydration. Clinopyroxene is close to diopside-hedenbergite (Mg# ~ 88) and metasomatized by arc-related fluids. Spinel and corundum occur as microinclusions in type-1 and type-1‧ garnets in the only reported natural occurrence of coexisting garnet + spinel + corundum, indicative of very high pressure. Chondrite-normalized REEs (rare earth elements) of the garnets show humped or weakly sinusoidal patterns, typically associated with garnet inclusions in diamond and garnet in kimberlite that crystallized at UHP conditions. These humped to weakly sinusoidal REE patterns developed as the result of interaction with a light REE-enriched metasomatic fluid. Partitioning of REEs between type-1‧ and type-1 garnets is consistent with the former having inherited its REEs from a high-Al clinopyroxene predecessor. The partitioning preserves a record of near-solidus temperatures (~ 1475 °C). Petrology and phase relationships independently suggest near-solidus conditions > 1500 °C (the highest temperature conditions reported in a UHP orogenic setting), providing evidence for an origin in a mantle plume. Therefore, the

  1. A Geochemical Transect Across the Lau and North Fiji Basins: New Evidence for the Distribution of Multiple Mantle Plume Components

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Price, A. A.; Jackson, M. G.; Blichert-Toft, J.; Arculus, R. J.; Conatser, C. S.; Konter, J. G.; Koppers, A. A. P.; Blusztajn, J.

    2014-12-01

    The Lau and North Fiji backarc basins are located in a tectonically complex region of the South Pacific, where the upper mantle may have been modified by up to five hotspots (Samoa, Rurutu, Rarotonga, Macdonald, and Louisville), each with distinct geochemical fingerprints. We present new Hf, Nd, Sr, and Pb isotopic data for basaltic samples dredged from seven areas along an east-west transect spanning the Lau and North Fiji basins to determine the possible influence and distribution of these various hotspot sources. We find that the isotope ratios of nearly all samples can be explained by mixing a depleted mantle component, which is ubiquitous in the Lau Basin, with a component similar to that found in Samoan shield (EMII) and/or rejuvenated (EMI) lavas. Lavas as far southwest as the Fiji Triple Junction (North Fiji Basin) show enriched geochemical signatures (87Sr/86Sr and 206Pb/204Pb up to 0.7037 and 18.635 respectively, and 143Nd/144Nd and 176Hf/177Hf down to 0.51285 and 0.283023, respectively) trending toward Samoa. This observation extends the range of Samoan influence into the North Fiji Basin 400 km south of its previous observed extent at South Pandora Ridge. The few samples that cannot be explained solely by incorporation of Samoan material are from the northeastern Lau Basin (Falloon et al., 2007) and host a dilute HIMU component that may relate to the incorporation of material from the Rurutu hotspot. This component is not observed further to the west in the Lau and North Fiji basins. A ubiquitous EMI signature in the region may be linked to the Rarotonga hotspot. New dredges from the northeast Lau Basin may give clearer signals that will reveal the identity of the enriched plume component.

  2. The deep seismic structure of the Ethiopia/Afar hotspot and the African superplume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hansen, Samantha E.; Nyblade, Andrew A.

    2013-07-01

    The Ethiopia/Afar hotspot has been frequently explained as an upper mantle continuation of the African superplume, with anomalous material in the lower mantle under southern Africa, rising through the transition zone beneath eastern Africa. However, the significantly larger amplitude low velocity anomaly in the upper mantle beneath Ethiopia/Afar, compared to the anomalies beneath neighboring regions, has led to questions about whether or not along-strike differences in the seismic structure beneath eastern Africa and western Arabia are consistent with the superplume interpretation. Here we present a new P-wave model of the hotspot's deep structure and use it to evaluate the superplume model. At shallow (< ˜400 km) depths, the slowest velocities are centered beneath the Main Ethiopian Rift, and we attribute these low velocities to decompression melting beneath young, thin lithosphere. At deeper depths, the low velocity structure trends to the northeast, and the locus of the low velocity anomaly is found beneath Afar. The northeast-trending structure with depth is best modeled by northeastward flow of warm superplume material beneath eastern Africa. The combined effects of shallow decompression melting and northeastward flow of superplume material explain why upper mantle velocities beneath Ethiopia/Afar are significantly slower than those beneath neighboring East Africa and western Arabia. The superplume interpretation can thus explain the deep seismic structure of the hotspot if the effects of both decompression melting and mantle flow are considered.

  3. Major influence of plume-ridge interaction, lithosphere thickness variations, and global mantle flow on hotspot volcanism—The example of Tristan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gassmöller, Rene; Dannberg, Juliane; Bredow, Eva; Steinberger, Bernhard; Torsvik, Trond H.

    2016-04-01

    Hotspot tracks are thought to originate when mantle plumes impinge moving plates. However, many observed cases close to mid-ocean ridges do not form a single age-progressive line, but vary in width, are separated into several volcanic chains, or are distributed over different plates. Here we study plume-ridge interaction at the example of the Tristan plume, which features all of these complexities. Additionally, the South Atlantic formed close to where plume volcanism began, opening from the south and progressing northward with a notable decrease in magmatism across the Florianopolis Fracture Zone. We study the full evolution of the Tristan plume in a series of three-dimensional regional models created with the convection code ASPECT. We then compute crustal thickness maps and compare them to seismic profiles and the topography of the South Atlantic. We find that the separation of volcanism into the Tristan and Gough chain can be explained by the position of the plume relative to the ridge and the influence of the global flow field. Plume material below the off-ridge track can flow toward the ridge and regions of thinner lithosphere, where decompression melting leads to the development of a second volcanic chain resembling the Tristan and Gough hotspot tracks. Agreement with the observations is best for a small plume buoyancy flux of 500 kg/s or a low excess temperature of 150 K. The model explains the distribution of syn-rift magmatism by hot plume material that flows into the rift and increases melt generation.

  4. Mantle source of the 2.44-2.50-Ga mantle plume-related magmatism in the Fennoscandian Shield: evidence from Os, Nd, and Sr isotope compositions of the Monchepluton and Kemi intrusions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Sheng-Hong; Hanski, Eero; Li, Chao; Maier, Wolfgang D.; Huhma, Hannu; Mokrushin, Artem V.; Latypov, Rais; Lahaye, Yann; O'Brien, Hugh; Qu, Wen-Jun

    2016-08-01

    Significant PGE and Cr mineralization occurs in a number of 2.44-2.50-Ga mafic layered intrusions located across the Karelian and Kola cratons. The intrusions have been interpreted to be related to mantle plume activity. Most of the intrusions have negative ɛNd values of about -1 to -2 and slightly radiogenic initial Sr isotope compositions of about 0.702 to 0.703. One potential explanation is crustal contamination of a magma derived from a mantle plume, but another possibility is that the magma was derived from metasomatized sub-continental lithospheric mantle. Samples from the upper chromitite layers of the Kemi intrusion and most samples from the previously studied Koitelainen and Akanvaara intrusions have supra-chondritic γOs values indicating some crustal contamination, which may have contributed to the formation of chromitites in these intrusions. Chromite separates from the main ore zone of the Kemi and Monchepluton intrusions show nearly chondritic γOs, similar to the coeval Vetreny belt komatiites. We suggest that the Os isotope composition of the primitive magma was not significantly changed by crustal contamination due to a high Os content of the magma and a low Os content of the contaminant. Modeling suggests that the Os and Nd isotope compositions of the Monchepluton and Kemi intrusions cannot be explained by assuming a magma source in the sub-continental lithospheric mantle with sub-chondritic γOs. A better match for the isotope data would be a plume mantle source with chondritic Re/Os and Os isotope composition, followed by crustal contamination.

  5. Basaltic volcanism, mantle plumes, and the mechanics of rifting: The Paraná flood basalt province of South America

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harry, Dennis L.; Sawyer, Dale S.

    1992-03-01

    Dynamic modeling of continental extension between South America and Africa shows that the mechanics of rifting played an important role in determining the pattern of volcanism within the Paraná and Etendeka flood-basalt provinces on the Brazilian and Namibian margins. The key feature of the model is the development of a horizontal pressure gradient in the lower crust during the early stages of extension, which provided a mechanism for transporting magma generated beneath the incipient sea-floor spreading axis into the Paraná province, 100-200 km distant. The horizontal pressure gradient developed as a consequence of the dynamic interaction of preexisting weaknesses in the middle crust and upper mantle during rifting. The model accounts for the large quantity of basalt, the asymmetric distribution of basalt on the conjugate margins, and the northward migration of the eruptive center with time. The rapidity of magma genesis is in agreement with models of decompression melting during rifting. The model indicates that although elevated asthenosphere temperatures associated with the Tristan plume account for the volume of melt generated, the mechanics of rifting control the location and style of emplacement. The model suggests that extension in the region began ca. 150-155 Ma, and lasted about 25 m.y.

  6. Pb, Nd, and Sr isotopic evidence for a multicomponent source for rocks of Cook-Austral Islands and heterogeneities of mantle plumes

    SciTech Connect

    Nakamura, Yoichi; Tatsumoto, Mitsunobu )

    1988-12-01

    Sr, Nd, and Pb isotopic compositions were measured in alkane volcanic rocks from the South Cook Islands and the Austral Islands. The results show that the Cook-Austral rocks have an extremely wide range in isotopic compositions of Pb: {sup 206}Pb/{sup 204}Pb from 18.25 to 21.76, {sup 207}Pb/{sup 204}Pb from 15.48 to 15.83, and {sup 208}Pb/{sup 204}Pb from 38.37 to 40.62, whereas isotopic compositions of Sr and Nd are less variable. Isotopically, Mangaia, Rimatara, and Rurutu form one group, which shows extremely ratiogenic Pb isotopic compositions but near-MORB (mid-ocean ridge basalts) values for Sr and Nd isotopic ratios. In contrast, samples from Aitutaki, Rarotonga, Mauke, and Atiu (Aitutaki group) have high {sup 207}Pb/{sup 204}Pb and {sup 208}Pb/{sup 204}Pb and moderately high {sup 87}Sr/{sup 86}Sr (Dupal anomaly). The Aitutaki group could have been derived from heterogeneous mantle plumes, which rose from the enriched deep mantle (the almost primitive lower mantle or recycled continental and oceanic slabs). On the other hand, the Mangaia component could have been derived from the depleted upper mantle which may have been metasomatized with a Co{sub 2}-rich fluid, as indicated by the near-MORB values of Sr and Nd isotopes. Although Pb isotopic data of the two groups cannot be distinguished from each other statistically, the end components of the Pb-Pb system do not match with those of the Nd-Sr system. Thus, the data must be explained by a multi-, at least three, component mixing model: the mantle plumes, metasomatized upper mantle, and lithosphere. The K-Ar ages and isotopic characteristics of the Cook-Austral rocks indicate that if one mantle plume rises from the deep mantle in this region, it has separated into at least two segments on the way to the surface.

  7. Pb, Nd, and Sr isotopic evidence for a multicomponent source for rocks of Cook-Austral Islands and heterogeneities of mantle plumes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nakamura, Y.; Tatsumoto, M.

    1988-01-01

    Sr, Nd, and Pb isotopic compositions were measured in alkaline volcanic rocks (alkali basalt, ankaramite, nephelinite, phonolite, and trachyte) from the South Cook Islands (Aitutaki, Mauke, Rarotonga, Atiu, and Mangaia) and the Austral Islands (Rimatara and Rurutu). The results show that the Cook-Austral rocks have an extremely wide range in isotopic compositions of Pb: 206Pb 204Pb from 18.25 to 21.76, 207pb 204pb from 15.48 to 15.83, and sol208pb 204Pb from 38.37 to 40.62, whereas isotopic compositions of Sr and Nd are less variable. Isotopically, Mangaia, Rimatara, and Rurutu form one group (Mangaia group), which shows extremely radiogenic Pb isotopic compositions but near-MORB (mid-oceanic ridge basalts) values for Sr and Nd isotopic ratios. In contrast, samples from Aitutaki, Rarotonga, Mauke, and Atiu (Aitutaki group) have high 207Pb 204Pb and 208Pb 204Pb and moderately high 87Sr 86Sr (Dupal anomaly). The Aitutaki group could have been derived from heterogeneous mantle plumes, which rose from the enriched deep mantle (the almost primitive lower mantle or recycled continental and oceanic slabs). On the other hand, the Mangaia component could have been derived from the depleted upper mantle which may have been metasomatized with a CO2-rich fluid, as indicated by the near-MORB values of Sr and Nd isotopes. Although Pb isotopic data of the two groups cannot be distinguished from each other statistically, the end components of the Pb-Pb system do not match with those of the Nd-Sr system. Thus, the data must be explained by a multi-, at least three, component mixing model: the mantle plumes (Dupal component and a recycled oceanic slab), metasomatized upper mantle, and lithosphere. The K-Ar ages and isotopic characteristics of the Cook-Austral rocks indicate that if one mantle plume rises from the deep mantle in this region, it has separated into at least two segments on the way to the surface. ?? 1988.

  8. Origin of two types of rhyolites in the Tarim Large Igneous Province: Consequences of incubation and melting of a mantle plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Hai-Quan; Xu, Yi-Gang; Tian, Wei; Zhong, Yu-Ting; Mundil, Roland; Li, Xian-Hua; Yang, Yue-Heng; Luo, Zhen-Yu; Shang-Guan, Shi-Mai

    2014-09-01

    The Early Permian Tarim Large Igneous Province (LIP) in northwestern China contains a large area of silicic volcanics (~ 48,000 km2) which are spatially and temporally associated with mafic-ultramafic rocks. In order to understand the behavior of crust above a mantle plume, selected rhyolitic samples are investigated in terms of U-Pb zircon dating, geochemical and isotopic analyses. The Tarim rhyolites have high A/CNK ratios (= molar Al2O3/CaO + Na2O + K2O), Fe#, Ga/Al ratios, concentrations of high field strength elements (HFSEs) such as Zr and Nb, and rare earth elements (REEs), along with high zircon saturation temperatures (872-940 °C), typical of aluminous A-type granitoids. Two contrasting rock types have been recognized. The low Nb-Ta type rhyolites are mainly associated with the first phase of the Tarim flood basalt magmatism at ~ 290 Ma. They are characterized by negative Nb-Ta anomalies, low εNd(t) and εHf(t) values, and high 87Sr/86Sr(t) and δ18Ozircon values, consistent with a derivation from continental crustal source. The high Nb-Ta type rhyolites and their plutonic equivalents are associated with the second episode of Tarim magmatism (283-272 Ma). They are characterized by small negative to positive Nb-Ta anomalies, oceanic island basalt (OIB)-like trace element ratios, low 87Sr/86Sr(t) and high εNd(t) and εHf(t) values. These high Nb-Ta rhyolites are best interpreted as hybrid products of crystal fractionation of mafic magmas, coupled with crustal assimilation. The temporal and compositional evolution of the Tarim rhyolites reflects various extents of thermal and mass exchange between mantle-derived basaltic magma and crustal material above a mantle plume. When the plume head rises to the base of the Tarim craton, it first melts enriched components in the lithospheric mantle (~ 290 Ma), part of which may have ponded near the crust-mantle boundary and induced crustal anatexis leading to the formation of the low Nb-Ta type rhyolites. At ~ 280 Ma

  9. Low Velocities in the Oceanic Upper Mantle and Their Relation to Plumes: New Insights From SEM-based Waveform Tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Romanowicz, B. A.; French, S. W.; Lekic, V.

    2012-12-01

    The advent of 3D numerical seismic wavefield computations is beginning to bear fruits in seismic tomography, particularly as it enables better resolution of regions of lower than average velocity, which otherwise can be hidden by wavefront healing effects. Inspection of the oceanic part of our latest global tomographic model, SEMum2 (French et al., this meeting), developed using waveform inversion and the spectral element method, confirms the presence of a well marked shear wave low velocity zone beneath the lithosphere, with a velocity minimum which deepens progressively as a function of age of the plate, and reaches values that are lower than in previous tomographic global models. Interestingly, below this "classical" low velocity zone, the model reveals a pattern of alternating lower and higher velocities organized into elongated bands in the direction of absolute plate motion (APM). This fingerlike structure, confined to the depth range 200-350 km, is most prominent beneath the Pacific plate, but also present under the eastern Antarctic plate, in the south Atlantic and in parts of the Indian ocean. The wavelength of the fingers in the direction perpendicular to the APM, is on the order of 1000 km, consistent with the scaling predicted from laboratory experiments on Rayleigh Taylor instabilities (Weeraratne et al., this meeting). Below this depth, the low velocities appear organized into several vertically coherent "conduits", the most prominent under Hawaii and the Pacific superswell, where they appear to be rooted in the lower mantle. These conduits have complex shapes, in particular, the one associated with Hawaii undulates as it "rises", and is deflected towards the ridge as it reaches the bottom of the "fingering" layer. Individual hotspots do not lie immediately above the conduits but in their general vicinity. Nor are the fingers always associated with prominent hotspots. This morphology in the top 400 km of the oceanic mantle suggests the presence of a

  10. A review of Wilson Cycle plate margins: What is the role of mantle plumes in continental break-up along former sutures?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buiter, Susanne; Torsvik, Trond

    2013-04-01

    It was Tuzo Wilson (1966) who recognised that the different faunal distributions on both sides of the present-day North Atlantic Ocean required the existence of an earlier proto-Atlantic Ocean. The observation that the present-day Atlantic Ocean mainly opened along a former suture was a crucial step in the formulation of the Wilson Cycle theory. The theory implies that collision zones are structures that are able to localize extensional deformation for long times after the collision has waned. We review margin pairs around the Atlantic and Indian Oceans with the aim to evaluate the extent to which oceanic opening used former sutures and to analyse the role of mantle plumes in continental break-up. We aid our analyses with plate tectonic reconstructions using GPlates (www.gplates.org). Already Wilson recognized that Atlantic break-up did not always follow the precise line of previous junction. For example, Atlantic opening did not utilize the Iapetus suture in Great Britain and rather than opening along the younger Rheic suture north of Florida, break-up occurred along the older Pan-African structures south of Florida. As others before us, we find no correlation of suture and break-up age. Often continental break-up occurs some hundreds of Myrs after collision, but it may also take more than a Gyr, as for example for Australia-Antarctica and Congo-São Francisco. This places serious constraints on potential collision zone weakening mechanisms. Several studies have pointed to a link between continental break-up and large-scale mantle upwellings. It is, however, much debated whether plumes use existing rifts as a pathway, or whether plumes play an active role in causing rifting. It is also important to realise that in several cases break-up cannot be related to plume activity. Examples are the Iberia-Newfoundland, Equatorial Atlantic Ocean, and Australia-Antarctica plate margins. For margins that are associated with large igneous provinces (LIPs), we find a positive

  11. Petrological and geochemical variations along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge between 46°S and 32°S: Influence of the Tristan da Cunha mantle plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Humphris, Susan E.; Thompson, Geoffrey; Schilling, Jean-Guy; Kingsley, Richard H.

    1985-06-01

    Basalts from a section of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge close to the active volcanic island of Tristan da Cunha in the South Atlantic have been analysed to investigate the influence of the mantle plume on the geochemistry of basalts being erupted at the spreading center. Although petrographically the rocks show only limited variation, two basaltic types were determined to be erupting in this region based on their major, trace and REE compositions. One group shows depletion in the incompatible and LRE elements, and can be characterised as N-type mid-ocean ridge basalts. The second group shows "enriched" geochemical characteristics and is similar to T-type MORBs. Mixing hyperbolae for the incompatible element and REE ratios suggest that extensive mixing of an end-member, characteristic of a plume region with an end-member of normal depleted MORB, canaccount for the occurrence of the T-type MORBs in this region.Based on the nature and development of the Tristan da Cunha mantle plume over the past 100 Ma, a composite model of evolution is suggested,in which a ridge-centered hotspot progressed to a near ridge hotspot, and finally to a totally intraplate situation. The fact that Tristan da Cunha is highly alkalic now, but that an irregular geochemical anomalyis also present on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge at this latitude would suggest an intermediate stage between the near-ridge and totally intraplate situation. This model leads to the conclusion that, as the Mid-Atlantic Ridge migrated away from the Tristan hotspot, a preferential sublithospheric flow towards the Ridge was established. This discontinuous feature can explain the geochemical variations seen along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge by providing a mechanism for mixing of a depleted N-type MORB component with an enriched component originating through processes active at the Tristan da Cunha mantle plume.

  12. Cocos Plate Seamounts offshore NW Costa Rica and SW Nicaragua: Implications for large-scale distribution of Galápagos plume material in the upper mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Herbrich, Antje; Hoernle, Kaj; Werner, Reinhard; Hauff, Folkmar; Bogaard, Paul v. d.; Garbe-Schönberg, Dieter

    2015-01-01

    The origin of intraplate volcanism not directly part of a hotspot track, such as diffuse seamount provinces, and the extent of mantle plume influence on the upper mantle remain enigmatic. Here we present new 40Ar/39Ar age data and geochemical (major and trace-element and Sr-Nd-Pb isotopic) data from seamounts on the Cocos Plate presently located offshore of NW Costa Rica and SW Nicaragua. The seamounts (~ 7-24 Ma) require mixing of an enriched ocean island basalt composition, similar to that of the Northern Galápagos Domain, with two depleted components. One of the depleted components is similar to East Pacific Rise normal mid-ocean ridge basalt and the other has more depleted incompatible elements, either reflecting secondary melting of MORB or a depleted Galápagos plume component. Seamounts with ages significantly younger than the ocean crust formed in an intraplate setting and can be explained by northward transport of Galápagos plume material along the base of the Cocos Plate up to 900 km away from the hotspot and 250-500 km north of the Galápagos hotspot track. We propose that melting occurs due to decompression as the mantle upwells to shallower depth as it flows northwards, either due to changes in lithospheric thickness or as a result of upwelling at the edge of a viscous plug of accumulated plume material at the base of the lithosphere. The tholeiitic to alkaline basalt compositions of the Cocos Plate Seamounts compared to the more silica under-saturated compositions of Hawaiian rejuvenated and arch (alkali basalts to nephelinites) lavas are likely to reflect the significant difference in age (< 25 vs ~ 90 Ma) and thus thickness of the lithosphere on which the lavas were erupted.

  13. Composition of the Tarim mantle plume: Constraints from clinopyroxene antecrysts in the early Permian Xiaohaizi dykes, NW China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, Xun; Xu, Yi-Gang; Luo, Zhen-Yu; Zhao, Jian-Xin; Feng, Yue-Xing

    2015-08-01

    Numerous alkaline basaltic dykes crosscut the Early Permian Xiaohaizi wehrlite in drill-cores and syenite intrusion in the Tarim large igneous province, NW China. One basaltic dyke contains abundant clinopyroxene macrocrysts with strong resorption textures. Such a textural disequilibrium is consistent with their contrasting chemistry between the macrocrysts (Mg# = 80-89) and the host dyke (Mg# = 39, corresponding to Mg# = 73 of clinopyroxene in equilibrium with the dyke), indicating that they are not phenocrysts. The clinopyroxene macrocrysts are characterized by low TiO2 (0.26-1.09 wt.%), Al2O3 (1.15-3.10 wt.%) and Na2O (0.16-0.37 wt.%), unlike those in mantle peridotites but resembling those in layered mafic intrusions in the same area. The clinopyroxene macrocrysts and the clinopyroxenes from the Xiaohaizi cumulate wehrlites define a coherent compositional trend and have identical trace element patterns, pointing to a comagmatic origin for these crystals. Accordingly, the macrocrysts cannot be xenocrysts foreign to the magmatic system. Rather they are antecrysts that crystallized from progenitor magmas and have been reincorporated into the host dyke before intrusion. The 87Sr/86Sri (0.7035-0.7037) and εNdi (4.5-4.8) of the clinopyroxene macrocrysts with high Mg# (80-89) are apparently lower and higher than their respective ratios of the clinopyroxenes in the wehrlites (Mg# = 75-84, 87Sr/86Sri = 0.7038-0.7041, εNdi = 1.0-1.9). This difference in isotopes can be accounted for by assimilation and fractional crystallization (AFC) process operated during the formation of the Xiaohaizi intrusion. In this sense, the clinopyroxene macrocrysts record the composition of the uncontaminated Tarim plume-derived melts.

  14. Not all Primordial Noble Gas Signatures are Associated with OIBs and Mantle Plumes - Mantle Heterogeneity, Primordial Shallow Sources and a Solar-like He, Ne Signature in an Ancient North American Craton

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ma, L.; Castro, M. C.; Hall, C. M.

    2007-12-01

    The presence of primordial He and Ne components in ocean island basalts (OIBs) as well as a mantle He/heat flux ratio lower than the production ratio near mid-ocean ridges have historically been used to support the existence of a two-layer mantle convection model. This would comprise a lower, primordial, undegassed reservoir from which He removal to the upper degassed mantle would be impeded. Arguments based on He and heat transport have been recently invalidated by Castro et al. (2005) and should no longer be used to justify the presence of two such distinct mantle reservoirs. Indeed, it was shown that such low He/heat flux ratios are expected and do not reflect a He deficit in the original crust or mantle reservoir. By contrast, the occurrence of a He/heat flux ratio greater than the radiogenic production ratio can only result from a past mantle thermal event in which the released heat has already escaped while the released He remains, and is slowly rising to the surface. Such a high He/heat flux ratio is present in shallow groundwaters of the Michigan Basin. We now present results of a new noble gas study conducted in the Michigan Basin, in which 38 deep (0.5-3.6km) brine samples were collected and analyzed for all noble gas abundances and isotopic ratios. As expected from previously computed shallow high He/heat flux ratios, both He and Ne isotopic ratios clearly indicate the presence of a mantle component. Of greater significance is the primordial, solar-like signature, of this mantle component. It is also the first primordial signature ever recorded in crustal fluids in a continental region. Because no hotspots or hotspot tracks are known in the area, it is highly unlikely for such primordial, solar-like signature to result from a mantle plume-related mechanism originating deep in the mantle. We argue that such a primordial signature can be explained by a shallow noble gas reservoir in the subcontinental lithospheric mantle (SCLM) beneath the Michigan Basin

  15. Is the track of the Yellowstone hotspot driven by a deep mantle plume? — Review of volcanism, faulting, and uplift in light of new data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pierce, Kenneth L.; Morgan, Lisa A.

    2009-11-01

    Geophysical imaging of a tilted mantle plume extending at least 500 km beneath the Yellowstone caldera provides compelling support for a plume origin of the entire Yellowstone hotspot track back to its inception at 17 Ma with eruptions of flood basalts and rhyolite. The widespread volcanism, combined with a large volume of buoyant asthenosphere, supports a plume head as an initial phase. Estimates of the diameter of the plume head suggest it completely spanned the upper mantle and was fed from sources beneath the transition zone, We consider a mantle-plume depth to at least 1,000 km to best explain the large scale of features associated with the hotspot track. The Columbia River-Steens flood basalts form a northward-migrating succession consistent with the outward spreading of a plume head beneath the lithosphere. The northern part of the inferred plume head spread (pancaked) upward beneath Mesozoic oceanic crust to produce flood basalts, whereas basalt melt from the southern part intercepted and melted Paleozoic and older crust to produce rhyolite from 17 to 14 Ma. The plume head overlapped the craton margin as defined by strontium isotopes; westward motion of the North American plate has likely "scraped off" the head from the plume tail. Flood basalt chemistries are explained by delamination of the lithosphere where the plume head intersected this cratonic margin. Before reaching the lithosphere, the rising plume head apparently intercepted the east-dipping Juan de Fuca slab and was deflected ~ 250 km to the west; the plume head eventually broke through the slab, leaving an abruptly truncated slab. Westward deflection of the plume head can explain the anomalously rapid hotspot movement of 62 km/m.y. from 17 to 10 Ma, compared to the rate of ~ 25 km/m.y. from 10 to 2 Ma. A plume head-to-tail transition occurred in the 14-to-10-Ma interval in the central Snake River Plain and was characterized by frequent (every 200-300 ka for about 2 m.y. from 12.7 to 10.5 Ma

  16. Is the track of the Yellowstone hotspot driven by a deep mantle plume? - Review of volcanism, faulting, and uplift in light of new data

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pierce, K.L.; Morgan, L.A.

    2009-01-01

    Geophysical imaging of a tilted mantle plume extending at least 500??km beneath the Yellowstone caldera provides compelling support for a plume origin of the entire Yellowstone hotspot track back to its inception at 17??Ma with eruptions of flood basalts and rhyolite. The widespread volcanism, combined with a large volume of buoyant asthenosphere, supports a plume head as an initial phase. Estimates of the diameter of the plume head suggest it completely spanned the upper mantle and was fed from sources beneath the transition zone, We consider a mantle-plume depth to at least 1,000 km to best explain the large scale of features associated with the hotspot track. The Columbia River-Steens flood basalts form a northward-migrating succession consistent with the outward spreading of a plume head beneath the lithosphere. The northern part of the inferred plume head spread (pancaked) upward beneath Mesozoic oceanic crust to produce flood basalts, whereas basalt melt from the southern part intercepted and melted Paleozoic and older crust to produce rhyolite from 17 to 14??Ma. The plume head overlapped the craton margin as defined by strontium isotopes; westward motion of the North American plate has likely "scraped off" the head from the plume tail. Flood basalt chemistries are explained by delamination of the lithosphere where the plume head intersected this cratonic margin. Before reaching the lithosphere, the rising plume head apparently intercepted the east-dipping Juan de Fuca slab and was deflected ~ 250??km to the west; the plume head eventually broke through the slab, leaving an abruptly truncated slab. Westward deflection of the plume head can explain the anomalously rapid hotspot movement of 62??km/m.y. from 17 to 10??Ma, compared to the rate of ~ 25??km/m.y. from 10 to 2??Ma. A plume head-to-tail transition occurred in the 14-to-10-Ma interval in the central Snake River Plain and was characterized by frequent (every 200-300??ka for about 2??m.y. from 12.7 to 10

  17. Rare gas isotopes and parent trace elements in ultrabasic-alkaline-carbonatite complexes, Kola Peninsula: identification of lower mantle plume component

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tolstikhin, I. N.; Kamensky, I. L.; Marty, B.; Nivin, V. A.; Vetrin, V. R.; Balaganskaya, E. G.; Ikorsky, S. V.; Gannibal, M. A.; Weiss, D.; Verhulst, A.; Demaiffe, D.

    2002-03-01

    During the Devonian magmatism (370 Ma ago) ˜20 ultrabasic-alkaline-carbonatite complexes (UACC) were formed in the Kola Peninsula (north-east of the Baltic Shield). In order to understand mantle and crust sources and processes having set these complexes, rare gases were studied in ˜300 rocks and mineral separates from 9 UACC, and concentrations of parent Li, K, U, and Th were measured in ˜70 samples. 4He/ 3He ratios in He released by fusion vary from pure radiogenic values ˜10 8 down to 6 × 10 4. The cosmogenic and extraterrestrial sources as well as the radiogenic production are unable to account for the extremely high abundances of 3He, up to 4 × 10 -9 cc/g, indicating a mantle-derived fluid in the Kola rocks. In some samples helium extracted by crushing shows quite low 4He/ 3He = 3 × 10 4, well below the mean ratio in mid ocean ridge basalts (MORB), (8.9 ± 1.0) × 10 4, indicating the contribution of 3He-rich plume component. Magnetites are principal carriers of this component. Trapped 3He is extracted from these minerals at high temperatures 1100°C to 1600°C which may correspond to decrepitation or annealing primary fluid inclusions, whereas radiogenic 4He is manly released at a temperature range of 500°C to 1200°C, probably corresponding to activation of 4He sites degraded by U, Th decay. Similar 4He/ 3He ratios were observed in Oligocene flood basalts from the Ethiopian plume. According to a paleo-plate-tectonic reconstruction, 450 Ma ago the Baltica (including the Kola Peninsula) continent drifted not far from the present-day site of that plume. It appears that both magmatic provinces could relate to one and the same deep-seated mantle source. The neon isotopic compositions confirm the occurrence of a plume component since, within a conventional 20Ne/ 22Ne versus 21Ne/ 22Ne diagram, the regression line for Kola samples is indistinguishable from those typical of plumes, such as Loihi (Hawaii). 20Ne/ 22Ne ratios (up to 12.1) correlate well with 40

  18. Temporal variations in the mantle potential temperatures along the Northwest Hawaiian Ridge using olivine-liquid equilibria: Implications for Hawaiian plume melt flux variations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tree, J. P.; Garcia, M. O.; Putirka, K. D.

    2013-12-01

    samples from Midway, Hancock, and Gardner Pinnacles will be analyzed in order to obtain additional estimates of temporal variations in mantle potential temperature variations along the Ridge. Other parameters may also be affecting the magmatic productivity such as source heterogeneities (ie: pyroxenite vs peridotite) or melting pressure. These will be investigated using the computational methods of PRIMELT2 to understand significance of temperature, pressure, and compositional variations on the melt flux history of Hawaiian mantle plume.

  19. Isotope characteristics of the Okenyenya igneous complex, northwestern Namibia: constraints on the composition of the early Tristan plume and the origin of the EM 1 mantle component

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Milner, Simon C.; le Roex, Anton P.

    1996-06-01

    Sr, Nd and Pb isotope data are presented for a variety of intrusive rocks from the Mesozoic age Okenyenya igneous complex, which is temporally and spatially associated with the Etendeka Group volcanic rocks in northwestern Namibia. On the basis of bulk rock geochemistry the Okenyenya intrusions can be subdivided into tholeiitic and alkaline suites. The tholeiitic suite has a wide range in isotope composition; for example, initial ɛSr ( ɛSr(i)) from 1.2 to 150 with decrease in initial ɛNd ( ɛNd(i)) from 4.8 to -3.9. In contrast, the undersaturated rock types show a more restricted range and, in terms of ɛSr(i) (- 11.0-15.1) and ɛNd(i) (0.3-5.0), plot within the mantle array and close to Bulk Earth values. The range in isotope composition shown by the Okenyenya intrusions is similar to that shown by the Etendeka Group volcanic rocks. The tholeiitic suite is comparable in isotope composition to the Etendeka low TiZr (LTZ) basalts and defines a trend towards continental crust, whereas the alkaline suite is similar to the Etendeka Tafelkop basalts. The Etendeka high TiZr (HTZ) basalts do not have an isotopic equivalent amongst the Okenyenya intrusions, but are indistinguishable from basalts in DSDP Hole 525A on the Walvis Ridge; both are strongly displaced towards enriched mantle (EM 1) sources. The large variation in ɛSr(i) shown by the tholeiitic suite and Etendeka LTZ basalts appears to reflect extensive crustal contamination of the magmas, whereas the HTZ basalts, which trend towards EM 1, owe their isotope composition to melting of ancient continental lithospheric mantle. The alkaline gabbros and the Tafelkop basalts have compositions similar to the present-day composition of the Tristan plume and are interpreted as direct melts of the upwelling Tristan mantle plume at the time of continental break-up. An analogous relationship is observed between the Marion plume, Madagascan Upper Cretaceous basalts, and MORB erupted at the intersection between the

  20. Post-rifting relaxation in the Afar region, Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nooner, Scott L.; Bennati, Laura; Calais, Eric; Buck, W. Roger; Hamling, Ian J.; Wright, Tim J.; Lewi, Elias

    2009-11-01

    Crustal accretion at divergent plate boundaries typically occurs via the periodic intrusion of dikes, but their emplacement and the associated deformation are rarely observed. The few existing observations at subaerial rifts show that these diking events are followed by a decadal-scale period with extension rates faster than the secular divergent plate motion. This transient accelerated deformation has been explained by continued subsurface magma injection or by relaxation, in the viscoelastic mantle, of the stress changes imparted by dike opening. For the first time, GPS measurements were collected within a few months of a rifting event at a major plate boundary, the September 2005, 60 km-long dike intrusion in the Dabbahu segment, Afar, Ethiopia. Extension rates for the first 3 years greatly exceed the plate motion (Nubia-Arabia) secular divergence rate, even at sites located more than 60 km from the rift axis. Here we show that these observations are consistent with stress relaxation in a viscoelastic upper mantle with a viscosity of about 5 × 1018 Pa·s overlain by a 12-14 km-thick elastic crust. The alternative model of continued diking requires continuous opening well below the Moho and is therefore unlikely. Instead, magma injection in Afar since June 2006 has taken the form of smaller discrete diking events, tapping into a mid-crustal melt reservoir under the segment center.

  1. Interaction of extended mantle plume head with ancient lithosphere: evidence from deep-seated xenoliths in basalts and lamprophyre diatremes in Western Syria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharkov, Evgenii

    2016-04-01

    The Middle Cretaceous lamprophyric diatremes of the Jabel Ansaria Ridge contain xenoliths of ancient lower crustal rocks mainly represented by the suite of partly altered garnet granulite and eclogite-like rocks, which were formed at the expense of ferrogabbros and ferroclinopyroxenites most likely in the course of underplating of Fe-Ti basalt. Garnet (Alm26Grs11Py63) megacrysts and coarse-granular garnet-clinopyroxene intergrowths are most likely the varieties of rocks of this series. Garnet megacrysts are represented by large (up to 10 cm in diameter) round "nodules," often molten from the surface. Garnet is usually fractured, and the kelyphite material similar to that in rocks of the eclogite-granulite series occurs in fractures. In addition, we found several intergrowths of garnet with large (up to 3-5 cm in length) crystals of high-Al augite with the low of Ti and Na contents like in rocks of the eclogite-granulite suite. Coarse-grained garnet-clinopyroxene-hornblende rocks with spinel, as well as megacrysts of Al-Ti augite with kaersutite, form the second group in prevalence. This group is close to mantle xenoliths of the "black series" in alkali Fe-Ti basalt worldwide. Kaersutite in these rocks contains gaseous cavities, which provides evidence for the origin of rocks at the expense of a strongly fluidized melt/fluid. In contrast to rocks of the eclogite-granulite series, these rocks did not undergo alteration. Garnet Alm19-26Grs12-13.5Py59-67.5 usually associates with dark opaque spinel. In contrast, the Late Cenozoic plateaubasalts of the region practically do not contain lower crustal xenoliths, whereas xenoliths of mantle spinel lherzolite (fragments of the upper cooled rim of the plume head) are widely abundant. According to data of mineralogical thermobarometry, rocks of the eclogite-granulite suite were formed at 13.5-15.4 kbar (depths of 45-54 km) and 965-1115°C. Rocks of this suite are typical representatives of the continental lower crust

  2. Sub-km HIMU-type Enriched Mantle at a Mid-ocean Ridge Far From a Plume: Endeavour, JdFR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gill, J. B.; Michael, P. J.; Dreyer, B. M.; Clague, D. A.; Ramos, F. C.

    2015-12-01

    The Endeavour segment of the Juan de Fuca Ridge is characterized by abundant enriched (E) MORB since the currently inflated axial ridge formed <105 years ago, and by the full range of depleted (D) to E-MORB during the last 2300 years in the km-wide axial graben. Two different styles of enrichment of moderately incompatible elements are present. The first characterized basalts across the ~5 km-wide ridge from >10,000 to ~4000 years ago, whereas the second characterizes more recent basalts erupted in the axial graben. We attribute the first to a higher proportion of pyroxenite to enriched peridotite in the mantle source during ridge inflation. The more recent style reflects the reduced role of pyroxenite after the axial graben formed. The enriched component for both styles is a HIMU-type because it has low 87Sr/86Sr and 176Hf/177Hf relative to 143Nd/144Nd, lower 3He/4He (~8.1 RA) than in the more depleted basalts, shallow slopes on Pb isotope diagrams, and high Nb/LREE ratios. It is regionally widespread and shared with the West Valley and Explorer segments to the north. At least 14 different samplings of mantle components occurred within <1 km of ridge length and width during a time when <1 km of upwelling occurred, indicating that the scale of mantle heterogeneity is <1 km in this setting that is far from a plume.

  3. Uppermost mantle velocity from Pn tomography in the Gulf of Aden

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Corbeau, Jordane; Rolandone, Frédérique; Leroy, Sylvie; Al-Lazki, Ali; Keir, Derek; Stuart, Graham; Stork, Anna

    2013-04-01

    We present an analysis of Pn traveltimes to determine lateral variations of velocity in the uppermost mantle and crustal thickness beneath the Gulf of Aden and its margins. No detailed tomographic image of the entire Gulf of Aden was available. Previous tomographic studies covered the eastern Gulf of Aden and were thus incomplete or at a large scale with a too low resolution to see the lithospheric structures. From 1990 to 2010, 49206 Pn arrivals were selected from the International Seismological Center catalogue. We also used temporary networks : YOCMAL (Young Conjugate Margins Laboratory) networks with broadband stations located in Oman, Yemen and Socotra from 2003 to 2011, and Djibouti network from 2009 to 2011. From these networks we picked Pn arrivals and selected 4110 rays. Using a least-squares tomographic code (Hearn, 1996), these data were analyzed to solve for velocity variations in the mantle lithosphere. We perform different inversions for shorter and longer ray path data sets in order to separate the shallow and deep structure within the mantle lid. In the upper lid, zones of low velocity (7.7 km/s) around Sanaa, Aden, Afar, and along the Gulf of Aden are related to active volcanism. Off-axis volcanism and a regional melting anomaly in the Gulf of Aden area may be connected to the Afar plume, and explained by the model of channeling material away from the Afar plume along ridge-axis. Our study validates the channeling model and shows that the influence of the Afar hotspot may extend much farther eastwards along the Aden and Sheba ridges into the Gulf of Aden than previously believed. Still in the upper lid, high Pn velocities (>8,2 km/s) are observed in Yemen and may be related to the presence of a magmatic underplating under the volcanic margin of Aden and under the Red Sea margins. In the lower lid, zones of low velocities are spatially located differently than in the upper lid. On the Oman margin, a low velocity zone (7.6 km/s) suggests deep partial

  4. New attempts to identify core-mantle interactions in plume-derived materials using ultra-high precision tungsten isotope measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Touboul, M.; Puchtel, I. S.; Walker, R. J.

    2010-12-01

    Some mantle plume derived materials show coupled 187,186Os enrichments relative to upper-mantle materials that have been interpreted by some to reflect core-mantle interaction (Brandon et al., 1999, 2003, Puchtel et al., 2005). In addition to osmium, tungsten is another element whose isotopic composition can potentially be used to trace core-mantle interactions. Tungsten has one radiogenic isotope, 182W, a decay product of 182Hf, with a half-life of ~9 Myr. Like Os, W is siderophile, under reducing conditions, and, hence, is preferentially incorporated into Earth’s core, whereas Hf is lithophile and is retained in the mantle. Fractionation of Hf from W during core formation is predicted to have led to large differences in 182W/184W between the core and mantle. The use of W isotopes as tracers of core-mantle interaction has been hampered by limitations in the ability to measure W isotopic ratios at the level of ± 10 ppm or better. Within analytical uncertainty, MC-ICP-MS measurements of terrestrial rocks investigated so far show no resolvable 182W anomalies (Scherstén et al., 2004). Over the past year, we have developed a new ultra-high precision 182W/184W measurement protocol using a Triton thermal ionization mass spectrometer, allowing us to resolve 182W anomalies at a ± 6 ppm level (2σ, n=40). All W isotope measurements are performed in a negative ionization mode (WO3-) using a dynamic acquisition scheme. This precision improvement allows us to more rigorously interrogate the W isotopic compositions of materials with potentially deep mantle origins. A major problem in this application of W isotopes is the acquisition of mantle-derived materials that have not been contaminated with crustal W. Here we present W abundances, measured using isotope dilution, and corresponding ultra-high precision W isotopic composition measurements of Archean komatiites from the Kostomuksha greenstone belt (Baltic Shield), for which coupled 186Os-187Os enrichment has been

  5. Linking the Earth's surface with the deep-mantle plume beneath a region from Iceland to the city of Perm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Glišović, Petar; Forte, Alessandro; Simmons, Nathan; Grand, Stephen

    2014-05-01

    Current tomography models consistently reveal three large-scale regions of strongly reduced seismic velocity in the lowermost mantle under the Pacific, Africa and a region that extends from below Iceland to the city of Perm (the Perm Anomaly). We have carried out mantle dynamic simulations (Glišović et al., GJI 2012; Glišović & Forte, EPSL 2014) of the evolution of these large-scale structures that directly incorporate: 1) robust constraints provided by joint seismic-geodynamic inversions of mantle density structure with constraints provided by mineral physics data (Simmons et al., GJI 2009); and 2) constraints on mantle viscosity inferred by inversion of a suite of convection-related and glacial isostatic adjustment data sets (Mitrovica & Forte, EPSL 2004) characterised by Earth-like Rayleigh numbers. The convection simulations provide a detailed insight into the very-long-time evolution of the buoyancy of these lower-mantle anomalies. We find, in particular, that the buoyancy associated with the Perm Anomaly generates a very long-lived superplume that is connected to the paleomagnetic location of the Siberian Traps at the time of their eruption (Smirnov & Tarduno, EPSL 2010) and also to location of North Atlantic Igneous Provinces (i.e., the opening of North Atlantic Ocean).

  6. The effect of mantle plume heads on the motion between the African and Antarctic plates in the Late Cretaceous and Early Cenozoic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cande, S. C.; Patriat, P.

    2012-12-01

    Indo-Atlantic plate kinematics during the Late Cretaceous and Early Cenozoic were dominated by a period of roughly 25 million years during which the motions of India and Africa appear to have been coupled: a rapid speedup of India's absolute motion starting around 68 Ma was accompanied by a dramatic slowdown of Africa's absolute motion and the subsequent slowdown of India between 52 and 45 Ma was accompanied by a speedup of Africa. Cande and Stegman (2011) proposed that the coupled nature of these plate motions was caused by the arrival of the Reunion plume head at the Earth's surface: the speedup of India (slowdown of Africa) was due to the onset of the plume head, while the slowdown of India (speedup of Africa) was due to the waning of the plume head. This hypothesis is controversial since the slowdown of India has long been attributed to the initial collision of India with Eurasia and it is not clear how mantle plume heads affect plate motions. In order to better understand the cause of the coupled motions of India and Africa we have re-examined the motion of Africa relative to Antarctica as constrained by magnetic anomalies and fracture zones on the Southwest Indian Ridge (SWIR). The bends of the SWIR fracture zones contain a particularly important record of plate motion changes: a gradual ccw bend starting at Chron 32 is followed by a sharp cw bend at Chron 24. We present here a set of 13 revised rotations for the SWIR for the time interval from Chron 34 to Chron 18. These rotations quantify in more detail than in previous studies the changes recorded by the SWIR fracture zones. The onset of the ccw change in spreading direction and start of a rapid decrease in spreading rate on the SWIR occurs around Chron 32 (71 Ma). From Chron 32 to Chron 24 the motion between Africa and Antarctica is characterized by a continuous and apparently smooth migration of the Africa-Antarctic stage pole. The most dramatic change in motion along the SWIR is the sudden cw bend of

  7. Multiple mantle upwellings beneath the Northern East-African Rift System from relative P- and S-wave traveltime tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Civiero, Chiara; Hammond, James; Goes, Saskia; Fishwick, Stewart; Ahmed, Abdulhakim; Ayele, Atalay; Doubre, Cecile; Goitom, Berhe; Keir, Derek; Kendall, Mike; Leroy, Sylvie; Ogubazghi, Ghebrebrhan; Rumpker, Georg; Stuart, Graham

    2015-04-01

    Mantle plumes have been invoked as the likely cause of East African Rift volcanism and extension. However, the nature of mantle upwelling is debated, with proposed configurations ranging from a single broad plume, the African Superplume, connected to the LLSVP beneath Southern Africa, to one or more distinct lower-mantle sources along the rift. We present a new relative travel-time tomography model that images detailed P- and S- wave velocities from P,S and SKS phases below the northern East-African, Red Sea and Gulf of Aden rift. Data comes from stations that cover the area from Tanzania to Saudi Arabia. The aperture of the integrated dataset allows us to image for the first time structures of ~100 km length scale down to depths of 900 km beneath this region. Our images provide evidence of at least two low-velocity structures with a diameter of ~200 km that continue through the transition zone and into the lower mantle: the first extends to at least 900 km beneath Afar, and a second reaching at least 750 km depth just west of the Main Ethiopian Rift, a region with off-rift volcanism. Taking into account seismic sensitivity to temperature and thermally controlled phase boundary topography, we interpret these features as multiple focused upwellings from below the transition zone with excess temperatures of 100±50 K. The scale of the upwellings is smaller than any of the previously proposed lower mantle plume sources. This suggests the ponding or flow of deep-plume material below the transition zone may be spawning smaller upper-mantle upwellings.

  8. Constraints on a plume in the mid-mantle beneath the Iceland region from seismic array data

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pritchard, M.J.; Foulger, G.R.; Julian, B.R.; Fyen, J.

    2000-01-01

    Teleseismic P waves passing through low-wave-speed bodies in the mantle are refracted, causing anomalies in their propagation directions that can be measured by seismometer arrays. Waves from earthquakes in the eastern Pacific and western North America arriving at the NORSAR array in Norway and at seismic stations in Scotland pass beneath the Iceland region at depths of ~ 1000-2000 km. Waves arriving at NORSAR have anomalous arrival azimuths consistent with a low-wave-speed body at a depth of ~ 1500 km beneath the Iceland-Faeroe ridge with a maximum diameter of ~ 250 km and a maximum wave-speed contrast of ~ 1.5 per cent. This agrees well with whole-mantle tomography results, which image a low-wave-speed body at this location with a diameter of ~ 500 km and a wave-speed anomaly of ~ 0.5 per cent, bearing in mind that whole-mantle tomography, because of its limited resolution, broadens and weakens small anomalies. The observations cannot resolve the location of the body, and the anomaly could be caused in whole or in part by larger bodies farther away, for example by a body imaged beneath Greenland by whole-mantle tomography.

  9. Melting during late-stage rifting in Afar is hot and deep.

    PubMed

    Ferguson, D J; Maclennan, J; Bastow, I D; Pyle, D M; Jones, S M; Keir, D; Blundy, J D; Plank, T; Yirgu, G

    2013-07-01

    Investigations of a variety of continental rifts and margins worldwide have revealed that a considerable volume of melt can intrude into the crust during continental breakup, modifying its composition and thermal structure. However, it is unclear whether the cause of voluminous melt production at volcanic rifts is primarily increased mantle temperature or plate thinning. Also disputed is the extent to which plate stretching or thinning is uniform or varies with depth with the entire continental lithospheric mantle potentially being removed before plate rupture. Here we show that the extensive magmatism during rifting along the southern Red Sea rift in Afar, a unique region of sub-aerial transition from continental to oceanic rifting, is driven by deep melting of hotter-than-normal asthenosphere. Petrogenetic modelling shows that melts are predominantly generated at depths greater than 80 kilometres, implying the existence of a thick upper thermo-mechanical boundary layer in a rift system approaching the point of plate rupture. Numerical modelling of rift development shows that when breakup occurs at the slow extension rates observed in Afar, the survival of a thick plate is an inevitable consequence of conductive cooling of the lithosphere, even when the underlying asthenosphere is hot. Sustained magmatic activity during rifting in Afar thus requires persistently high mantle temperatures, which would allow melting at high pressure beneath the thick plate. If extensive plate thinning does occur during breakup it must do so abruptly at a late stage, immediately before the formation of the new ocean basin.

  10. Full seismic waveform inversion of the African crust and Mantle - Initial Results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Afanasiev, Michael; Ermert, Laura; Staring, Myrna; Trampert, Jeannot; Fichtner, Andreas

    2016-04-01

    We report on the progress of a continental-scale full-waveform inversion (FWI) of Africa. From a geodynamic perspective, Africa presents an especially interesting case. This interest stems from the presence of several anomalous features such as a triple junction in the Afar region, a broad region of high topography to the south, and several smaller surface expressions such as the Cameroon Volcanic Line and Congo Basin. The mechanisms behind these anomalies are not fully clear, and debate on their origin spans causative mechanisms from isostatic forcing, to the influence of localized asthenospheric upwelling, to the presence of deep mantle plumes. As well, the connection of these features to the African LLSVP is uncertain. Tomographic images of Africa present unique challenges due to uneven station coverage: while tectonically active areas such as the Afar rift are well sampled, much of the continent exhibits a severe dearth of seismic stations. As well, while mostly surrounded by tectonically active spreading plate boundaries (a fact which contributes to the difficulties in explaining the South's high topography), sizeable seismic events (M > 5) in the continent's interior are relatively rare. To deal with these issues, we present a combined earthquake and ambient noise full-waveform inversion of Africa. The noise component serves to boost near-surface sensitivity, and aids in mitigating issues related to the sparse source / station coverage. The earthquake component, which includes local and teleseismic sources, aims to better resolve deeper structure. This component also has the added benefit of being especially useful in the search for mantle plumes: synthetic tests have shown that the subtle scattering of elastic waves off mantle plumes makes the plumes an ideal target for FWI [1]. We hope that this new model presents a fresh high-resolution image of sub-African geodynamic structure, and helps advance the debate regarding the causative mechanisms of its surface

  11. Upper mantle seismic structure beneath the Pacific Northwest: A plume-triggered delamination origin for the Columbia River flood basalt eruptions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Darold, Amberlee; Humphreys, Eugene

    2013-03-01

    We invert teleseismic P and S body waves constrained by an ambient-noise surface wave model and Moho depth inferred from receiver function analysis (Gao et al., 2011) to image mantle structures continuously from the surface to the base of the upper mantle. The major structures coincide with prominent geological features. We focus on a NE-Oregon structure, termed here the Wallowa anomaly, which coincides with the source area for the ˜16 Ma Columbia River flood basalt eruptions and a circular area of topographic relief created during and after these eruptions. Resolution tests indicate that the curtain-like structure previously interpreted as Farallon lithosphere connects with the Wallowa anomaly above 150 km along the northeast margin of the Wallowa anomaly. This connection, along with the pre-flood basalt magmatic and tectonic history of the Pacific Northwest, lead us to conclude that arrival of the Yellowstone plume to south-central Oregon initiated delamination of remnant Farallon lithosphere from the base of NE Oregon, exposing ocean crust to Yellowstone asthenosphere. This hypothesis accounts for the propagation of flood basalt volcanism far north of the Yellowstone hotspot track, and for the high-silica composition of most of the flood basalt magmas.

  12. RHUM-RUM, a Large-Scale Effort to Seismologically Image a Mantle Plume Under the Reunion Hotspot: Experiment Presentation and Initial Results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sigloch, K.; Barruol, G.

    2014-12-01

    RHUM-RUM is a German-French geophysical experiment based on the seafloor and on islands surrounding the hotspot of La Réunion, western Indian Ocean. Its primary objective is to clarify the presence or absence of a mantle plume beneath the Reunion hotspot, which is thought to have first pierced the surface 65 million years ago with the eruption of the Deccan Traps on India. RHUM-RUM's central component is a one-year deployment (Oct 2012 - Nov 2013) of 57 broadband ocean-bottom seismometers (OBS) and hydrophones on an area of 2000x2000 km2 surrounding the hotspot. All OBS have been successfully recovered. We also have been operating 37 land seismometers on the islands of La Réunion, Mauritius, Rodrigues, southern Seychelles, îles Eparses, and on Madagascar between 2011 and 2014. As the data collection stage is drawing to a close, we discuss data yield and quality with respect to RHUM-RUM's primary purpose (passive seismological imaging through all depth levels of the mantle) and secondary applications ("environmental seismology" in a sparsely instrumented area, e.g., tracking of tropical cyclones). We give an overview of the research questions investigated by the RHUM-RUM group, and present preliminary results.

  13. Isotope-geochemical Nd-Sr evidence of Palaeoproterozoic plume magmatism in Fennoscandia and mantle-crust interaction on stages of layered intrusions formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Serov, Pavel; Bayanova, Tamara; Kunakkuzin, Evgeniy; Steshenko, Ekaterina

    2016-04-01

    characteristic feature is that in most cases, the proportion of mantle component decreases from the central parts of intrusions to their boundary zones. This may indicate a slight degree of contamination of the magma intrusion by crustal material near the contacts with the frame- rocks. Thus, our investigations show that Palaeoproterozoic layered PGE-bearing intrusions in the N-E Fennoscandian Shield were derived from intraplate magmatism. The same Palaeoproterozoic layered intrusions are known on the Fennoscandian Shield, Superior and Wyoming provinces of the world, and according to [Heaman, 1997; Ernst et.al., 2008] they were derived from the mantle plumes which caused the breakup of the oldest Kenorland supercontinent. These studies were supported by the RFBR 15-35-20501.

  14. Mantle geodynamics and implications for Earth's mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lassak, Teresa Mae

    Seismic evidence suggests the presence of two large, low shear wave velocity provinces in Earth's lowermost mantle beneath Africa and the central Pacific. The origin and evolution of these provinces is not constrained but is thought to be linked to Earth's large-scale mantle dynamics. The focus of this work is to determine if seismic models of core-mantle boundary (CMB) topography can be useful in characterizing Earth's mantle dynamics. The dynamic motions in Earth's mantle exert stress on the boundaries of Earth's mantle, which results in topography at the Earth's CMB. Better understanding topography on Earth's CMB could provide important constraints on mantle dynamics and on lower mantle heterogeneity. The work in this dissertation investigates two proposed dynamical hypotheses for Earth's mantle: thermal upwellings (plume clusters) and large intrinsically dense yet thermally buoyant piles of primitive mantle material (thermochemical piles). CMB topography is calculated for each model in order to identify topography patterns that are unique to each model. CMB topographic relief beneath thermochemical piles is relatively flat and upwarped compared to downwarping CMB topography beneath downwelling regions. In plume cluster models, there is a direct correlation between upwarping relief on the CMB and upwellings while downwarping relief occurs exclusively beneath downwelling regions. The results show that both thermochemical pile and plume cluster models produce unique CMB topography signatures; thus as seismic studies better resolve the global topography of Earth's CMB, there is potential to constrain the chemical and dynamic nature of Earth's lower mantle.

  15. He-Ne-Ar isotope studies of mafic volcanic rocks and mantle xenoliths from the East African Rift System - contrasting isotope signals in different rift branches

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Halldorsson, S. A.; Hilton, D. R.; Scarsi, P.; Abebe, T.; Massi, K. M.; Barry, P. H.; Fischer, T. P.; de Moor, J.; Rudnick, R. L.

    2010-12-01

    Helium isotope studies of the East African Rift System (EARS) suggest the involvement of a deep mantle plume(s) beneath the northern (Ethiopian) segment [1-3]. The highest 3He/4He (RA) signatures found to date show a close association with the greatest magma volumes erupted since the Early Cenozoic in the region. While the helium isotope characteristics are well established in the Ethiopia-Afar region, Ne and Ar systematics remain poorly constrained. Using a combined He-Ne-Ar isotope approach, our aim is to determine the regional extent of the influence of the Afar plume and to distinguish between subcontinental lithospheric mantle (SCLM) and/or a possible second mantle plume sources located to the south of the Turkana Depression. Xenoliths and mafic lavas from N-Tanzania display a limited range in He isotopes (5-7 RA) with exceptions at Arusha (7.8RA) and Labait (8.7RA), through 7.1-8.7 RA in N-Kenya and S-Ethiopia, to 14.3 RA in the Main Ethiopian Rift and Afar, spanning nearly the entire range of previously reported values. The mean 3He/4He ratio from of lavas and xenoliths from N-Tanzania is remarkably close to the global average of 6.1±0.9 (RA) for continental xenoliths and basalts, thought to represent the SCLM [4]. Thus far, only MORB-like values of 7.3-8.3 RA have been found in volcanics of the Western rift. Initial Ne isotope data reveal the presence of a solar-like Ne component in xenoliths from the Ethiopia-Afar region, with extrapolated 21Ne/22Neex ratios of 0.0365 (assuming Ne-B = 12.5). This trend overlaps that of the Loihi-Kilauea line (L-K). Interestingly, a xenolith from N-Tanzania has a 21Ne/22Neex ratio of 0.0415, falling on a trajectory intermediate between MORB and L-K. The highest 40Ar/36Ar ratio obtained on phenocrysts/xenoliths to date is 1510. The generally low 3He/4He ratios of N-Tanzania likely result from different mixing proportions of asthenospheric sources with lithospheric material, the latter having developed lower 3He/4He ratios

  16. Constraining the Composition of the Subcontinental Lithospheric Mantle Beneath the East African Rift: FTIR Analysis of Water in Spinel Peridotite Mantle Xenoliths

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Erickson, Stephanie Gwen; Nelson, Wendy R.; Peslier, Anne H.; Snow, Jonathan E.

    2014-01-01

    The East African Rift System was initiated by the impingement of the Afar mantle plume on the base of the non-cratonic continental lithosphere (assembled during the Pan-African Orogeny), producing over 300,000 kmof continental flood basalts approx.30 Ma ago. The contribution of the subcontinental lithospheric mantle (SCLM) to this voluminous period of volcanism is implied based on basaltic geochemical and isotopic data. However, the role of percolating melts on the SCLM composition is less clear. Metasomatism is capable of hybridizing or overprinting the geochemical signature of the SCLM. In addition, models suggest that adding fluids to lithospheric mantle affects its stability. We investigated the nature of the SCLM using Fourier transform infrared spectrometry (FTIR) to measure water content in mantle xenoliths entrained in young (1 Ma) basaltic lavas from the Ethiopian volcanic province. The mantle xenoliths consist dominantly of spinel lherzolites and are composed of nominally anhydrous minerals, which can contain trace water as H in mineral defects. Eleven mantle xenoliths come from the Injibara-Gojam region and two from the Mega-Sidamo region. Water abundances of olivines in six samples are 1-5ppm H2O while the rest are below the limit of detection (<0.5 ppm H2O); orthopyroxene and clinopyroxene contain 80-238 and 111-340 ppm wt H2O, respectively. Two xenoliths have higher water contents - a websterite (470 ppm) and dunite (229 ppm), consistent with involvement of ascending melts. The low water content of the upper SCLM beneath Ethiopia is as dry as the oceanic mantle except for small domains represented by percolating melts. Consequently, rifting of the East African lithosphere may not have been facilitated by a hydrated upper mantle.

  17. Midcontinent rift volcanism in the Lake Superior region: Sr, Nd, and Pb isotopic evidence for a mantle plume origin

    SciTech Connect

    Nicholson, S.W. Univ. of Minnesota, MN ); Shirey, S.B. )

    1990-07-10

    Between 1091 and 1098 Ma, most of a 15- to 20-km thickness of dominantly tholeiitic basalt erupted in the Midcontinent Rift System of the Lake Superior region, North American. The Portage Lake Volcanics in Michigan, which are the youngest MRS flood basalts, fall into distinctly high- and low-TiO{sub 2} types having different liquid lines of descent. Incompatible trace elements in both types of tholeiites are enriched compared to depleted or primitive mantle (La/Yb = 4.3-5.3; Th/Ta = 2.12-2.16; Zr/Y = 4.3-4.4), and both basalt types are isotopically indistinguishable. Sr, Nd, and Pb isotopic compositions of the Portage Lake tholeiites have {sup 87}Sr/{sup 86}Sr{sub i} {approx}0.7038, {epsilon}{sub Nd(1095 Ma)} {approx}0 {plus minus} 2, and {mu}{sub 1} {approx}8.2. Model ages with respect to a depleted mantle source (T{sub DM}) average about 1950-2100 Ma. Portage Lake rhyolits fall into two groups. Type I rhyolites have Nd and Pb isotopic characteristics ({epsilon}{sub Nd(1095 Ma)} {approx}0 to {minus}4.7; {mu}{sub 1} {approx}8.2-7.8) consistent with contamination of tholeiitic rocks by 5-10% Archean crust. The one type II rhyolite analyzed has Nd and Pb isotopic compositions ({epsilon}{sub Nd(1095 Ma)} {approx}{minus}13 to {minus}16; {mu}{sub 1} {approx}7.6-7.7) which are consistent with partial melting of Archean crust. Early Proterozoic crust was not a major contaminant of MRS rocks in the Lake Superior region. Most reported Nd and Pb isotopic compositions of MRS tholeiites from the main stage of volcanism in the Lake Superior region and of the Duluth Complex are comparable to the Nd and Pb isotopic data for Portage lake tholeiites. The isotopic enrichment of the MRS source compared to depleted mantle is striking and must have occurred at least 700 m.y. before 1100 Ma.

  18. the role of magmatism and segmentation in the structural evolution of the Afar Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stab, Martin; Bellahsen, Nicolas; Pik, Raphaël; Quidelleur, Xavier; Ayalew, Dereje; Leroy, Sylvie

    2015-04-01

    -rift magmatic supply. The difference in tectono-magmatic style between Central Afar (distributed extension and thick crust) and Northern Afar Erta Ale segment (narrow graben, thin crust) may be explained by the difference of magma volume (extruded & underplated) brought to the crust during extension. Magma supply in Central Afar thus allows the crust to be stretched without extreme thinning despite high degree of divergence. Thus, break-up may occur in both Central and Northern Afar, not depending on the apparent thickness of the crust but rather on the ability of the system to localize deformation. - There appears to be a link between early-rift transform zones and distribution of magmatic activity that affects in turn the structural style. We suggest that the closest feature from the SDR at mature VPM is the Stratoid series. The difference of volume between the Stratoid and the enormous volume of SDR imaged in seismic studies (e.g South Atlantic) is probably best explained by an initial low mantle potential temperature in Afar. Contrasted structural styles in Afar are the product of magma supply and segmentation, controlling thinning and extension distribution in the rift.

  19. A kinematic model for the development of the Afar Depression and its paleogeographic implications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Redfield, T. F.; Wheeler, W. H.; Often, M.

    2003-11-01

    The Afar Depression is a highly extended region of continental to transitional oceanic crust lying at the junction of the Red Sea, the Gulf of Aden and the Ethiopian rifts. We analyze the evolution of the Afar crust using plate kinematics and published crustal models to constrain the temporal and volumetric evolution of the rift basin. Our reconstruction constrains the regional-scale initial 3D geometry and subsequent extension and is well calibrated at the onset of rifting (˜20 Ma) and from the time of earliest documented sea-floor spreading anomalies (˜6 Ma Red Sea; ˜10 Ma Gulf of Aden). It also suggests the Danakil block is a highly extended body, having undergone between ˜200% and ˜400% stretch. Syn-rift sedimentary and magmatic additions to the crust are taken from the literature. Our analysis reveals a discrepancy: either the base of the crust has not been properly imaged, or a (plume-related?) process has somehow caused bulk removal of crustal material since extension began. Inferring subsidence history from thermal modeling and flexural considerations, we conclude subsidence in Afar was virtually complete by Mid Pliocene time. Our analysis contradicts interpretations of late (post 3 Ma) large (˜2 km) subsidence of the Hadar area near the Ethiopian Plateau, suggesting paleoclimatic data record regional, not local, climate change. Tectonic reconstruction (supported by paleontologic and isotopic data) suggests that a land bridge connected Africa and Arabia, via Danakil, up to the Early to Middle Pliocene. The temporal constraints on land bridge and escarpment morphology constrain Afar paleogeography, climate, and faunal migration routes. These constraints (particularly the development of geographic isolation) are fundamentally important for models evaluating and interpreting biologic evolution in the Afar, including speciation and human origins.

  20. The role of mantle plumes in the evolution of the African segment of Pangea and the formation of the Atlantic Ocean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peyve, A. A.

    2015-09-01

    In this paper, we discuss a broad range of issues related to the formation of large igneous provinces in the African segment of Pangea on the basis of modern seismic tomography data. The formation of older igneous provinces (Central American and Karoo) is attributed to a prolonged phase of upwelling of hot mantle material or fluids in separate jets within a much larger area than the supposed plume head. Owing to its huge size and the thick, dense continental crust, Pangea acted as a shield promoting the accumulation and lateral channeling of heat energy beneath the lithosphere. The changes in global Earth dynamics and the generation of extensional stresses alone may have led to the breakup of Pangea, triggering the eruption of large volumes of magma over short period of time. The same factors led to the opening of the Atlantic Ocean. We provide arguments that the African superplume represents a Cenozoic structure not associated with the emplacement of the Karoo province. At the same time, the hot material brought under the lithosphere by this superplume synchronously with the start of magmatism in east Africa then spread out to the northwest to form local melting areas in Central and Northwestern Africa. We suggest that magmatic activity within the same region may have lasted, with interruptions, over tens of millions of years. Because of plate motion, these lowvelocity zones acting as heat sources appear to have lost their deep-seated roots, so that mantle reservoirs surviving at the base of the lithosphere may have fed magmatism and drifted together with the lithosphere.

  1. Topography of Upper Mantle Seismic Discontinuities Beneath the North Atlantic: The Azores, Canary and Cape Verde Plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, C.; Saki, M.; Nippress, S. E. J.; Lessing, S.

    2014-12-01

    We are mapping the topography of upper mantle seismic discontinuities beneath the North Atlantic and surrounding regions by using precursor arrivals to PP and SS seismic waves that reflect off the seismic discontinuities. Numerous source-receiver combinations have been used in order to collect a large dataset of reflection points beneath our investigation area. We analysed over 1700 seismograms from MW>5.8 events using array seismic methods to enhance the signal to noise ratio. The measured time lag between PP (SS) arrivals and their corresponding precursors on robust stacks are used to measure the depth of the transition zone boundaries. The reflectors' depths show a correlation between the location of known hotspots and a significantly depressed 410 km discontinuity indicating a temperature increase of 50-300 K compared to the surrounding mantle. For the 660 km discontinuity three distinct behaviours are visible: i) normal depths beneath Greenland and at a distance of a few hundred kilometres away from known hotspots, ii) shallower 660 km discontinuity compared with the global average value near hotspots closer to the Mid-Atlantic Ridge and iii) very few observations of a 660 km discontinuity at the hotspot locations. We interpret our observations as a large upwelling beneath the southern parts of our study region, possibly due to the South Atlantic convection cell. The thermal anomaly may be blocked by endothermic phase transformation and likely does not extend through the top of the transition zone except for those branches which appear as the Azores, Canaries and Cape Verde hotspots at the surface.

  2. Topography of upper mantle seismic discontinuities beneath the North Atlantic: The Azores, Canary and Cape Verde plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saki, Morvarid; Thomas, Christine; Nippress, Stuart E. J.; Lessing, Stephan

    2015-01-01

    We are mapping the topography of upper mantle seismic discontinuities beneath the North Atlantic and surrounding regions by using precursor arrivals to PP and SS seismic waves that reflect off the seismic discontinuities. Numerous source-receiver combinations have been used in order to collect a large dataset of reflection points beneath our investigation area. We analysed over 1700 seismograms from MW > 5.8 events using array seismic methods to enhance the signal to noise ratio. The measured time lag between PP (SS) arrivals and their corresponding precursors on robust stacks are used to measure the depth of the transition zone boundaries. The reflectors' depths show a correlation between the location of known hotspots and a significantly depressed 410 km discontinuity indicating a temperature increase of 50-300 K compared to the surrounding mantle. For the 660 km discontinuity three distinct behaviours are visible: (i) normal depths beneath Greenland and at a distance of a few hundred kilometres away from known hotspots, (ii) shallower 660 km discontinuity compared with the global average value near hotspots closer to the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, and (iii) very few observations of a 660 km discontinuity at the hotspot locations. We interpret our observations as a large upwelling beneath the southern parts of our study region, possibly due to the South Atlantic convection cell. The thermal anomaly may be ponding beneath the endothermic 660 km phase transformation and likely does not extend through the top of the transition zone as a whole, except for those branches which appear as the thinner upwellings of Azores, Canaries and Cape Verde hotspots at the surface.

  3. Topography of upper mantle seismic discontinuities beneath the North Atlantic: the Azores, Canary and Cape Verde plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saki, Morvarid; Thomas, Christine; Nippress, Stuart E. J.; Lessing, Stephan

    2015-04-01

    We are mapping the topography of upper mantle seismic discontinuities beneath the North Atlantic and surrounding regions by using precursor arrivals to PP and SS seismic waves that reflect off the seismic discontinuities. Many source-receiver combinations have been used in order to collect a large dataset of reflection points beneath our investigating area. We analyzed over 1700 seismograms from MW>5.8 events using array seismic methods to enhance the signal to noise ratio. The measured time lag between PP (SS) arrivals and their corresponding precursors on robust stacks are used to measure the depth of the transition zone boundaries. The reflectors' depths show a correlation between the location of hotspots and a significantly depressed 410 km discontinuity indicating a temperature increase of 200-300 K compared to the surrounding mantle. For the 660 km discontinuity three distinct behaviours are visible: i) normal depths beneath Greenland and at a distance of a few hundred kilometres away from the hotspots and ii) shallower 660 km discontinuity compared with the global average value near hotspots closer to the Mid-Atlantic Ridge and iii) very few observations of a 660 km discontinuity at the hotspot locations. We interpret our observations as a large upwelling beneath the southern parts of our study region, possibly due to the South Atlantic convection cell. The thermal anomaly may be blocked by endothermic phase transformation and likely does not extend through the top of the transition zone as whole except for those branches which appear as the Azores, Canaries and Cape Verde hotspots at the surface.

  4. Plume capture by divergent plate motions: implications for the distribution of hotspots, geochemistry of mid-ocean ridge basalts, and estimates of the heat flux at the core-mantle boundary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jellinek, A. Mark; Gonnermann, Helge M.; Richards, Mark A.

    2003-01-01

    The coexistence of stationary mantle plumes with plate-scale flow is problematic in geodynamics. We present results from laboratory experiments aimed at understanding the effects of an imposed large-scale circulation on thermal convection at high Rayleigh number (10 6≤Ra≤10 9) in a fluid with a temperature-dependent viscosity. In a large tank, a layer of corn syrup is heated from below while being stirred by large-scale flow due to the opposing motions of a pair of conveyor belts immersed in the syrup at the top of the tank. Three regimes are observed, depending on the ratio V of the imposed horizontal flow velocity to the rise velocity of plumes ascending from the hot boundary, and on the ratio λ of the viscosity of the interior fluid to the viscosity of the hottest fluid in contact with the bottom boundary. When V≪1 and λ≥1, large-scale circulation has a negligible effect on convection and the heat flux is due to the formation and rise of randomly spaced plumes. When V>10 and λ>100, plume formation is suppressed entirely, and the heat flux is carried by a sheet-like upwelling located in the center of the tank. At intermediate V, and depending on λ, established plume conduits are advected along the bottom boundary and ascending plumes are focused towards the central upwelling. Heat transfer across the layer occurs through a combination of ascending plumes and large-scale flow. Scaling analyses show that the bottom boundary layer thickness and, in turn, the basal heat flux q depend on the Peclet number, Pe, and λ. When λ>10, q∝Pe 1/2 and when λ→1, q∝(Pe λ) 1/3, consistent with classical scalings. When applied to the Earth, our results suggest that plate-driven mantle flow focuses ascending plumes towards upwellings in the central Pacific and Africa as well as into mid-ocean ridges. Furthermore, plumes may be captured by strong upwelling flow beneath fast-spreading ridges. This behavior may explain why hotspots are more abundant near slow

  5. Crustal and upper mantle structure beneath south-western margin of the Arabian Peninsula from teleseismic tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Korostelev, Félicie; Basuyau, Clémence; Leroy, Sylvie; Tiberi, Christel; Ahmed, Abdulhakim; Stuart, Graham W.; Keir, Derek; Rolandone, Frédérique; Ganad, Ismail; Khanbari, Khaled; Boschi, Lapo

    2014-07-01

    image the lithospheric and upper asthenospheric structure of western continental Yemen with 24 broadband stations to evaluate the role of the Afar plume on the evolution of the continental margin and its extent eastward along the Gulf of Aden. We use teleseismic tomography to compute relative P wave velocity variations in south-western Yemen down to 300 km depth. Published receiver function analysis suggest a dramatic and localized thinning of the crust in the vicinity of the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, consistent with the velocity structure that we retrieve in our model. The mantle part of the model is dominated by the presence of a low-velocity anomaly in which we infer partial melting just below thick Oligocene flood basalts and recent off-axis volcanic events (from 15 Ma to present). This low-velocity anomaly could correspond to an abnormally hot mantle and could be responsible for dynamic topography and recent magmatism in western Yemen. Our new P wave velocity model beneath western Yemen suggests the young rift flank volcanoes beneath margins and on the flanks of the Red Sea rift are caused by focused small-scale diapiric upwelling from a broad region of hot mantle beneath the area. Our work shows that relatively hot mantle, along with partial melting of the mantle, can persist beneath rifted margins after breakup has occurred.

  6. Plate break-up geometry in SE-Afar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Geoffroy, Laurent; Le Gall, Bernard; Daoud, Mohamed

    2014-05-01

    New structural data acquired in Djibouti strongly support the view of a magma-rich to magma-poor pair of conjugate margins developed in SE Afar since at least 9 Ma. Our model is illustrated by a crustal-scale transect that emphasizes the role of a two-stage extensional detachment fault system, with opposing senses of motion through time. The geometry and kinematics of this detachment fault pattern are mainly documented from lavas and fault dip data extracted from remote sensing imagery (Landsat ETM+, and corresponding DEM), further calibrated by field observations. Although expressed by opposite fault geometries, the two successive extensional events evidenced here are part of a two-stage continental extensional tear-system associated with the ongoing propagation of the Aden-Tadjoura oceanic axis to the NW. A flip-flop evolution of detachment faults accommodating lithosphere divergence has recently been proposed for the development of the Indian Ocean and continental margins (Sauter et al., 2013). However, the SE Afar evolution further suggests a radical and sudden change in lithosphere behavior during extension, from a long-term and widespread magmatic stage to a syn-sedimentary break-up stage where mantle melting concentrates along the future oceanic axis. Of special interest is the fact that a late and rapid stage of non-magmatic extension led to break-up, whose geometry triggered the location of the break-up axis and earliest oceanic accretion. New structural data acquired in Djibouti strongly support the view of a magma-rich to magma-poor pair of conjugate margins developed in SE Afar since at least 9 Ma. Our model is illustrated by a crustal-scale transect that emphasizes the role of a two-stage extensional detachment fault system, with opposing senses of motion through time. The geometry and kinematics of this detachment fault pattern are mainly documented from lavas and fault dip data extracted from remote sensing imagery (Landsat ETM+, and corresponding

  7. Petrology and geochronology of lavas from Ka'ula Volcano: Implications for rejuvenated volcanism of the Hawaiian mantle plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garcia, Michael O.; Weis, Dominique; Jicha, Brian R.; Ito, Garrett; Hanano, Diane

    2016-07-01

    Marine surveying and submersible sampling of Ka'ula Volcano, located 100 km off the axis of the Hawaiian chain, revealed widespread areas of young volcanism. New 40Ar/39Ar and geochemical analyses of the olivine-phyric submarine and subaerial volcanic rocks show that Ka'ula is shrouded with 1.9-0.5 Ma alkalic basalts. The ages and chemistry of these rocks overlap with rejuvenated lavas on nearby, northern Hawaiian Island shields (Ni'ihau, Kaua'i and South Kaua'i Swell). Collectively, these rejuvenated lavas cover a vast area (∼7000 km2), much more extensive than any other area of rejuvenated volcanism worldwide. Ka'ula rejuvenated lavas range widely in alkalinity and incompatible element abundances (e.g., up to 10× P2O5 at a given MgO value) and ratios indicating variable degrees of melting of a heterogeneous source. Heavy REE elements in Ka'ula lavas are pinned at a mantle normalized Yb value of 10 ± 1, reflecting the presence of garnet in the source. Trace element ratios indicate the source also contained phlogopite and an Fe-Ti oxide. The new Ka'ula ages show that rejuvenated volcanism was nearly coeval from ∼0.3 to 0.6 Ma along a 450 km segment of the Hawaiian Islands (from West Maui to north of Ka'ula). The ages and volumes for rejuvenated volcanism are inconsistent with all but one geodynamic melting model proposed to date. This model advocates a significant contribution of pyroxenite to rejuvenated magmas. Analyses of olivine phenocryst compositions suggest a major (33-69%) pyroxenite component in Ka'ula rejuvenated lavas, which correlates positively with radiogenic Pb isotope ratios for Ka'ula. This correlation is also observed in lavas from nearby South Kaua'i lavas, as was reported for Atlantic oceanic islands. The presence of pyroxenite in the source may have extended the duration and volume of Hawaiian rejuvenated volcanism.

  8. Investigating Transition Zone Thickness Variation under the Arabian Plate: Evidence Lacking for Deep Mantle Upwellings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Juliá, J.; Tang, Z.; Mai, P. M.; Zahran, H.

    2014-12-01

    Cenozoic volcanic outcrops in Arabia - locally known as harrats - span more than 2000 km along the western half of the Arabian plate, from eastern Yemen to southern Syria. The magmatism is bimodal in character, with older volcanics (30 to 20 My) being tholeiitic-to-transitional and paralleling the Red Sea margin, and younger volcanics (12 Ma to Recent) being transitional-to-strongly-alkalic and aligning in a more north-south direction. The bimodal character has been attributed to a two-stage rifting process along the Red Sea, where the old volcanics would have produced from shallow sources related to an initial passive rifting stage, and young volcanics would have originated from one or more deep-seated mantle plumes driving present active rifting. Early models suggested the harrats would have resulted from either lateral flow from the Afar plume in Ethiopia, or more locally from a separate mantle plume directly located under the shield. Most recently, tomographic images of the Arabian mantle have suggested the northern harrats could be resulting from flow originating at a deep plume under Jordan. In this work, we investigate the location of deep mantle plumes under the Arabian plate by mapping transition zone thickness with teleseismic receiver functions. The transition zone is bounded by seismic discontinuities, nominally at 410 and 660 km depth, originating from phase transitions in the olivine-normative component of the mantle. The precise depth of the discontinuities is strongly dependent on temperature and, due to the opposing signs of the corresponding Clapeyron slopes, positive temperature anomalies are expected to result in thinning of the transition zone. Our dataset consists of ~5000 low-frequency (fc < 0.25 Hz) receiver function waveforms obtained at ~110 broadband stations belonging to a number of permanent and temporary seismic networks in the region. The receiver functions were migrated to depth and stacked along a ~2000 km long record section

  9. Multiple mantle upwellings in the transition zone beneath the northern East-African Rift system from relative P-wave travel-time tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Civiero, Chiara; Hammond, James O. S.; Goes, Saskia; Fishwick, Stewart; Ahmed, Abdulhakim; Ayele, Atalay; Doubre, Cecile; Goitom, Berhe; Keir, Derek; Kendall, J.-Michael; Leroy, Sylvie; Ogubazghi, Ghebrebrhan; Rümpker, Georg; Stuart, Graham W.

    2015-09-01

    Mantle plumes and consequent plate extension have been invoked as the likely cause of East African Rift volcanism. However, the nature of mantle upwelling is debated, with proposed configurations ranging from a single broad plume connected to the large low-shear-velocity province beneath Southern Africa, the so-called African Superplume, to multiple lower-mantle sources along the rift. We present a new P-wave travel-time tomography model below the northern East-African, Red Sea, and Gulf of Aden rifts and surrounding areas. Data are from stations that span an area from Madagascar to Saudi Arabia. The aperture of the integrated data set allows us to image structures of ˜100 km length-scale down to depths of 700-800 km beneath the study region. Our images provide evidence of two clusters of low-velocity structures consisting of features with diameter of 100-200 km that extend through the transition zone, the first beneath Afar and a second just west of the Main Ethiopian Rift, a region with off-rift volcanism. Considering seismic sensitivity to temperature, we interpret these features as upwellings with excess temperatures of 100 ± 50 K. The scale of the upwellings is smaller than expected for lower mantle plume sources. This, together with the change in pattern of the low-velocity anomalies across the base of the transition zone, suggests that ponding or flow of deep-plume material below the transition zone may be spawning these upper mantle upwellings. This article was corrected on 28 SEP 2015. See the end of the full text for details.

  10. Anticlockwise P-T evolution at ∼280 Ma recorded from ultrahigh-temperature metapelitic granulite in the Chinese Altai orogenic belt, a possible link with the Tarim mantle plume?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tong, Laixi; Xu, Yi-Gang; Cawood, Peter A.; Zhou, Xin; Chen, Yibing; Liu, Zhao

    2014-11-01

    An ultrahigh-temperature (UHT) metapelitic granulite assemblage consisting of garnet(g)-spinel(sp)-orthopyroxene(opx)-sillimanite(sil)-cordierite(cd)-ilmenite(ilm)-biotite(bi)-plagioclase(pl)-quartz(q) occurs within migmatitic paragneiss near Kalasu in the Chinese Altai, NW China. Textural relations, mineral compositions and P-T estimates, indicate three stages of mineral assemblages: (1) pre-peak prograde stage (M1) consisting of a sp-sil-bearing or sp-opx-bearing inclusion assemblage, with low-Al2O3 contents (4-5 wt.%) in orthopyroxene and P-T conditions of ∼7 kbar and ∼890 °C, (2) peak UHT stage (M2) comprising a g-opx-cd-bearing coarse-grained assemblage, with high-Al2O3 contents (8-9 wt.%) in orthopyroxene and peak conditions of ∼8 kbar and ∼970 °C, and (3) post-peak HT stage (M3) containing an oriented opx-bi-sil-bearing assemblage in matrix, with moderate amounts of Al2O3 (6-7 wt.%) in orthopyroxene and P-T conditions of 8-9 kbar and ∼870 °C. The three discrete stages define an anticlockwise P-T path involving initial prograde heating and post-peak near isobaric cooling. Such a near isobaric cooling anticlockwise P-T path suggests that UHT metamorphism likely occurred in an overall extensional tectonic setting with associated underplating of mantle-derived mafic magma. A SHRIMP zircon U-Pb age of 278 ± 2 Ma obtained from the metapelitic granulite indicates UHT metamorphism in the Altai orogen occurred during the Permian, coeval with spacially associated mantle-derived mafic intrusions (∼280 Ma) and the Tarim mantle plume (∼275 Ma). Thus, the Permian UHT metamorphism of the Chinese Altai is likely associated with underplating and heating of mantle-derived mafic magma as a result of the Tarim mantle plume.

  11. Magnetotelluric imaging of upper crustal partial melt at Tendaho graben in Afar, Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Didana, Yohannes Lemma; Thiel, Stephan; Heinson, Graham

    2014-05-01

    We report on a recent magnetotelluric (MT) survey across the Manda Hararo magmatic segment (MHMS) within the Tendaho graben in the Afar Depression in northeastern Ethiopia. Twenty-two broadband MT sites with ˜1 km station spacing were deployed along a profile with the recorded data covering a period range from 0.003 s to 1000 s. A two-dimensional (2-D) resistivity model reveals an upper crustal fracture zone (fault) and partial melt with resistivity of 1-10Ωm at a depth of >1 km. The partial melt has a maximum horizontal width of 15 km and extends to a depth of 15 km within the Afar Stratoid Series basalts. We estimate a melt fraction of about 13% based on geochemical and borehole data, and bulk resistivity from the 2-D MT inversion model. The interpreted upper crustal partial melt may have been formed by either a magma intrusion from mantle sources or a large volume of continental crust that has been fluxed by a small amount of mantle melt and heat. Within the MHMS and Tendaho graben, a magma intrusion is a plausible explanation for the upper crustal conductor. The inferred presence of a conductive fracture zone or fault with hydrothermal fluid and shallow heat sourcing magma reservoir also makes the Tendaho graben a promising prospect for the development of conventional hydrothermal geothermal energy.

  12. Exposed guyot from the afar rift, ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Bonatti, E; Tazieff, H

    1970-05-29

    A series of originally submarine volcanoes has been found in the Afar Depression. Some of the volcanic structures are morphologically similar to oceanic guyots. One of them consists of strata of finely fragmented and pulverized basaltic glass. The fragmentation of the lava is probably the result of stream explosions taking place during the submarine eruption. The flat top of this guyot is considered to be a constructional feature; by analogy, it is suggested that not all oceanic guyots are necessarily the result of wave truncation of former volcanic islands.

  13. Exposed guyot from the afar rift, ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Bonatti, E; Tazieff, H

    1970-05-29

    A series of originally submarine volcanoes has been found in the Afar Depression. Some of the volcanic structures are morphologically similar to oceanic guyots. One of them consists of strata of finely fragmented and pulverized basaltic glass. The fragmentation of the lava is probably the result of stream explosions taking place during the submarine eruption. The flat top of this guyot is considered to be a constructional feature; by analogy, it is suggested that not all oceanic guyots are necessarily the result of wave truncation of former volcanic islands. PMID:17833451

  14. Three-dimensional electrical conductivity in the mantle beneath the Payún Matrú Volcanic Field in the Andean backarc of Argentina near 36.5°S: evidence for decapitation of a mantle plume by resurgent upper mantle shear during slab steepening

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burd, A. I.; Booker, J. R.; Mackie, R.; Favetto, A.; Pomposiello, M. C.

    2014-08-01

    Southern Mendoza and northern Neuquén Provinces, south of the Pampean Shallow Subduction region in western Argentina, are host to the <2 Myr Payunia Basaltic Province, which covers ˜39 500 km2 with primarily basaltic intraplate volcanism. This backarc igneous province can be explained by extension due to trench roll-back following steepening of a flat slab that existed in the middle to late Miocene. Magnetotelluric data collected at 37 sites from 67°W to 70°W and 35°S to 38°S are used to probe the source of the Payún Matrú basalts. These data, which require significantly 3-D structure, are inverted with a 3-D non-linear conjugate gradient algorithm that minimizes structure for a given data misfit. We identify two significant electrically conductive structures. One, called the SWAP (shallow western asthenospheric plume) approaches the surface beneath the Payún Matrú Caldera and the Trómen Volcano and dips westward towards the subducted Nazca slab. The second, called the DEEP (deep eastern plume) approaches the surface ˜100 km to the southeast of Payún Matrú and dips steeply east to ˜400 km depth while remaining above the subducted Nazca slab. We use a variety of model assessment techniques including forward modelling and constrained inversion to test the veracity of these features. We interpret the SWAP as the source of the <2 Myr intraplate volcanism. Our model assessment permits but does not require the SWAP to connect to the Nazca slab. The SWAP and DEEP are electrically connected only in the shallow crust, which is likely due to the Neuquén sedimentary basin and not a magmatic process. We propose that the SWAP and DEEP may have been more robustly connected in the past, but that the DEEP was decapitated to form the SWAP when shallow northwestward mantle flow resumed during steepening of the slab. The ˜2 Myr basaltic volcanism is the result of this decapitated DEEP magma that had ponded below the crust until extension allowed eruption. The

  15. Receiver function constraints on crustal seismic velocities and partial melting in the Red Sea Rift, Central Afar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reed, C. A.; Almadani, S.; Gao, S. S.; Elsheikh, A. A.; Cherie, S.; Thurmond, A. K.; Liu, K. H.

    2013-12-01

    The Afar Depression is currently a unique locale for the investigation of crustal and mantle processes involved in the transition from continental to oceanic rifting. To provide high-quality images of the crust and upper mantle beneath the Red Sea Rift in Central Afar, we deployed an array of 18 broadband seismic stations in 2010 and 2011. Here we report receiver function stacking results to investigate crustal properties of this presumably incipient oceanic rift. Stacking of approximately 2200 radial receiver functions along the ~200 km long array reveals an average crustal thickness of 22 km, ranging from nearly 18 km within the Red Sea Rift axis to approximately 30 km within the overlap zone between the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden rift axes. The resulting anomalously high Vp/Vs ratios systematically decrease toward the northeast, ranging from 2.40 southwest of the Tendaho Graben to 1.85 within the overlap zone. We utilize theoretical Vp and melt fraction relationships to constrain a highly reduced average crustal P-velocity of 5.0 km/s within the rift axis, which is characterized by a melt percentage of ~11% confined primarily to the lower crust while the overlap zone contains relatively minor quantities of partial melt. An observed asymmetric distribution of high Vp/Vs values within the Tendaho Graben, as well as regionally maximum values on the southwestern rift flank, suggest crustal magmas either delivered from off-axis subcrustal magma chambers or as material present as residuum from the Red Sea Rift axis migration. Comparisons of these crustal properties beneath the Red Sea Rift and those found beneath mature mid-ocean ridges suggest the locus of extensional strain within the Central Afar is currently diffuse and in the process of localizing toward the Tendaho Graben accompanying the northeastward migration of the Afar Triple Junction.

  16. The Upper Mantle Flow Field around South-Africa as Reflected by Isotopic Provinciality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meyzen, C.; Blichert-Toft, J.; Ludden, J.; Humler, E.; Mevel, C.; Albarede, F.

    2006-12-01

    Isotopic studies of MORB have established the existence of broad isotopic provinces within the underlying asthenosphere, such as in the Indian Ocean (DUPAL). How these features relate to mantle circulation is, however, still unknown. The steepness of the transition between such isotopic provinces will define the geometry of the velocity field in the upper mantle. In this respect, the transition between the Indian and South Atlantic provinces, two domains that are isotopically contrasted, should be readily identifiable over this long ridge segment. Here, we present Hf isotope data for 60 samples dredged along the SWIR between 35° and 69°E. The new Hf isotope data show that the Indian asthenosphere does not spill directly into the South Atlantic upper mantle: the general decreasing southward gradient observed for ^{176}Hf/^{177}Hf down the mid- Atlantic Ridge, and also for Sr isotopes and model Th/U ratios (derived from Pb isotopes), is overprinted by material with radiogenic Sr, unradiogenic Hf and high Th/U. The Indian domain grades into the South Atlantic around Bouvet, while the South Atlantic collides with the Atlantic province around Tristan. We interpret these features to represent fronts between three adjacent isotopic provinces similar to what has been suggested for the Australian-Antarctic Discordance. The common DUPAL signature of MORB and OIB from the Indian province and the geochemistry of Gulf of Aden MORB and the Afar plume suggest that the source of this distinctive mantle component is deep and lies to the north of the province. This is also what the three-dimensional flow field computed by Behn et al. (2004) from shear-wave splitting shows with a major lower mantle upwelling radiating at the base of the asthenosphere under the Afar plume. Lower mantle gushing out from this source flows southward unimpeded along the Indian ridges, whereas it only reaches the South Atlantic ridge after first having been deflected under the deep roots of the South

  17. The basaltic volcanism of the Dumisseau Formation in the Sierra de Bahoruco, SW Dominican Republic: A record of the mantle plume-related magmatism of the Caribbean Large Igneous Province

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Escuder-Viruete, Javier; Joubert, Marc; Abad, Manuel; Pérez-Valera, Fernando; Gabites, Janet

    2016-06-01

    The basaltic volcanism of the Dumisseau Fm in the Sierra de Bahoruco, SW Dominican Republic, offers the opportunity to study, on land, the volcanism of the Caribbean Large Igneous Province (CLIP). It consists of an at least 1.5 km-thick sequence of submarine basaltic flows and pyroclastic deposits, intruded by doleritic dykes and sills. Three geochemical groups have been identified: low-Ti tholeiites (group I); high-Ti transitional basalts (group II); and high-Ti and LREE-enriched alkaline basalts (group III). These geochemical signatures indicate a plume source for all groups of basalts, which are compositionally similar to the volcanic rocks that make up various CLIP fragments in the northern region of the Caribbean Plate. Trace element modelling indicates that group I magmas are products of 8-20% melting of spinel lherzolite, group II magmas result 4-10% melting of a mixture of spinel and garnet lherzolite, and group III basalts are derived by low degrees (0.05-4%) of melting of garnet lherzolite. Dynamic melting models suggest that basalts represent aggregate melts produced by progressive decompression melting in a mantle plume. There is no compositional evidence for the involvement of a Caribbean supra-subduction zone mantle or crust in the generation of the basalts. Two 40Ar/39Ar whole-rock ages reflect the crystallisation of group II magmas at least in the late Campanian (~ 74 Ma) and the lower Eocene (~ 53 Ma). All data suggest that the Dumisseau Fm is an emerged fragment of the CLIP, which continues southward through the Beata Ridge

  18. Continental aggregation, subduction initiation, and plume generation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heron, P. J.; Lowman, J. P.

    2013-12-01

    Several processes unfold during the supercontinent cycle, more than one of which might result in an elevation in subcontinental mantle temperatures through the generation of mantle plumes. Paleogeographic plate reconstructions have indicated that sub-continental mantle upwellings appear below large continents that are extensively ringed by subduction zones. Moreover, several numerical simulations of supercontinent formation and dispersal attribute the genesis of sub-continental plumes to the generation of subduction zones on the edges of the supercontinent, rather than resulting from continental insulation. However, the role of the location of downwellings in producing a return-flow upwelling, and on increasing sub-continental mantle temperatures, is not fully understood. In this mantle convection study, we examine the evolution of mantle dynamics after supercontinent accretion over a subduction zone (analogous to the formation of Pangea) for a range of continental coverage. We present 2D and 3D Cartesian geometry mantle convection simulations, featuring geotherm- and pressure-dependent viscosity with thermally and mechanically distinct oceanic and continental plates. Through changing the size of the continent we are able to analyze the factors involved in the generation of mantle plumes in purely thermal convection. Furthermore, we change the upper and lower mantle viscosity to determine their relation to plume formation in vigorous mantle convection simulations. Elevated sub-continental temperatures are analyzed in relation to continental coverage to further understand the influence of continental tectonics on the thermal evolution of the mantle.

  19. Primary and secondary processes constraining the noble gas isotopic signatures of carbonatites and silicate rocks from Brava Island: evidence for a lower mantle origin of the Cape Verde plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mourão, Cyntia; Moreira, Manuel; Mata, João; Raquin, Aude; Madeira, José

    2012-06-01

    We present and discuss noble gas compositions of minerals from silicate rocks (olivines) and carbonatites (apatites and calcites) from Brava Island. The presence of an almost ubiquitous atmosphere-derived fingerprint is explained as reflecting contamination by seawater. Because of the high U and Th content in apatites, which are responsible for 4He production by α-decay, the high measured 4He/3He ratios do not represent magmatic signatures. In contrast, low values of 4He/3He in calcites (≥61,223; R/ R a ≤ 11.80) and olivines (≥56,240; R/ R a ≤ 12.85) are considered to be representative of signatures trapped at the time of crystallization, given that there are no evidences for significant cosmogenic additions. These relatively low 4He/3He ratios depicted by silicate and carbonatite rocks imply the contribution of a reservoir that evolved under low (U + Th)/3He; this is considered a strong evidence for the genesis of Brava by a mantle plume deeply anchored in the lower mantle. The inferred low 4He/40Ar* ratio (≈0.3), before degassing, is thought to reflect the contribution to the carbonatites source of a mantle domain evolving under high K/U, which cannot be explained by recycling of crustal components. The possible link between the low 4He/40Ar* source and the "missing Ar reservoir" is discussed. The usually referred geochemical dichotomy between Northern and Southern Cape Verde islands, which is markedly evident from Sr, Nd, and Pb isotope signatures, is not apparent from Brava Island (Southern Cape Verde), where some samples present relatively unradiogenic 4He/3He signatures, similar to those reported for the Northern islands of the archipelago.

  20. Magmatism on rift flanks: Insights from ambient noise phase velocity in Afar region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Korostelev, Félicie; Weemstra, Cornelis; Leroy, Sylvie; Boschi, Lapo; Keir, Derek; Ren, Yong; Molinari, Irene; Ahmed, Abdulhakim; Stuart, Graham W.; Rolandone, Frédérique; Khanbari, Khaled; Hammond, James O. S.; Kendall, J. M.; Doubre, Cécile; Ganad, Ismail Al; Goitom, Berhe; Ayele, Atalay

    2015-04-01

    During the breakup of continents in magmatic settings, the extension of the rift valley is commonly assumed to initially occur by border faulting and progressively migrate in space and time toward the spreading axis. Magmatic processes near the rift flanks are commonly ignored. We present phase velocity maps of the crust and uppermost mantle of the conjugate margins of the southern Red Sea (Afar and Yemen) using ambient noise tomography to constrain crustal modification during breakup. Our images show that the low seismic velocities characterize not only the upper crust beneath the axial volcanic systems but also both upper and lower crust beneath the rift flanks where ongoing volcanism and hydrothermal activity occur at the surface. Magmatic modification of the crust beneath rift flanks likely occurs for a protracted period of time during the breakup process and may persist through to early seafloor spreading.

  1. Correlated Os-Pb-Nd-Sr isotopes in the Austral-Cook chain basalts: the nature of mantle components in plume sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schiano, P.; Burton, K. W.; Dupré, B.; Birck, J.-L.; Guille, G.; Allègre, C. J.

    2001-04-01

    Osmium (Os), strontium (Sr), neodymium (Nd) and lead (Pb) isotopes have been measured on a suite of aphyric basalts from 12 islands of the Austral-Cook island archipelago, an area which exhibits a range in Pb isotope compositions that encompasses almost the entire range displayed by ocean island basalts (OIB). Although the samples have Os concentrations (1.69-34.80 ppt) at the lower end of the range measured for OIB, they display a range of initial 187Os/ 188Os ratios (between 0.1279 and 0.1594) similar to that defined by olivine-phyric, Os-rich OIB. Positive Os-Nd, Os-Pb and negative Os-Sr isotope correlations are documented, indicating that the isotopic arrays represent various proportions of mixing between a HIMU-type end-member represented by Mangaia and Tubuai islands and characterized by radiogenic Os and Pb isotopic compositions, and an end-member represented by Rarotonga island which is characterized by unradiogenic Os and intermediate Sr, Nd and Pb isotopic compositions. The HIMU signature of the mantle component involved in Tubuai-Mangaia mantle sources requires long-term enrichments of U and Th relative to Pb and Re relative to Os, without associated increase in Rb/Sr, that are consistent with recycled oceanic crust. The end-member represented by Rarotonga basalts shows Os, Sr, Nd, and Pb isotopic signatures similar to those presumed for the 'bulk silicate earth' (BSE), which cannot be obtained by mixing the four mantle components (DMM, HIMU and EM1 and 2) generally used to circumscribe the Sr-Nd-Pb isotopic data of OIB. The primitive-like isotopic characters of this end-member might be ascribed to the presence of undepleted material from a lower segment of the mantle in the source of the Austral-Cook island basalts (and more specifically Rarotonga basalts); however, such a hypothesis is challenged by both the absence of a primordial 3He signature and the non-primitive Ce/Pb and Nb/U values for the Austral-Cook island basalts. Alternatively, assuming

  2. Recent rift-related volcanism in Afar, Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferguson, David J.; Barnie, Talfan D.; Pyle, David M.; Oppenheimer, Clive; Yirgu, Gezahegn; Lewi, Elias; Kidane, Tesfaye; Carn, Simon; Hamling, Ian

    2010-04-01

    Rift zones are the most common magmatic environment on Earth. However opportunities to observe active rifting are rare, and consequently the volcanological characteristics of rift systems are not well understood. An ongoing phase of magmatic rifting along a section of the Red Sea system in Afar, Ethiopia, presents an exceptional opportunity to constrain relationships between volcanism and crustal growth. Here, by integrating analyses of satellite images (i.e. MODIS, OMI, ASTER, and ALI) with field observations, we characterise two recent (August 2007 and June 2009) basaltic fissure eruptions in Afar and evaluate the role and significance of volcanism in the rifting process. Both events were brief (36-72 h) and erupted 4.4-18 × 10 6 m 3 of lava from a fissure system 4-6.5 km in length. Data from the spaceborne Ozone Monitoring Instrument (OMI) suggests total SO 2 emissions for each eruption of 26 ± 5 kt (2007) and 34 ± 7 kt (2009), consistent with complete degassing of the erupted magma volumes. Using geodetic models for the intrusive activity in Afar we estimate the partitioning of magma between intrusive and extrusive components, up to July 2009, to be ˜ 180:1. Comparing the first-order volcanic characteristics and the intrusive-extrusive volume balance for the Afar volcanism with data from the 1975-1984 Krafla rifting cycle (Iceland) suggests that the volcanic flux in Afar will rise significantly over the next few years as the stresses are increasingly relieved by dyking, and subsequent dykes are able to propagate more easily to the surface. As a consequence, basaltic fissure eruptions in this section of the Afar rift will become of increasing large magnitude as the rifting event matures over the next 5-10 yr. Using available models of magmatic rifting we forecast the likely size and location of future eruptions in Afar.

  3. Relationship between plume and plate tectonics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Puchkov, V. N.

    2016-07-01

    The relationship between plate- and plume-tectonics is considered in view of the growth and breakdown of supercontinents, active rifting, the formation of passive volcanic-type continental margins, and the origin of time-progressive volcanic chains on oceanic and continental plates. The mantle wind phenomenon is described, as well as its effect on plume morphology and anisotropy of the ambient mantle. The interaction of plumes and mid-ocean ridges is discussed. The principles and problems of plume activity analysis in subduction- and collision-related foldbelts are considered and illustrated with examples.

  4. Volcanic architecture of the Afar Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vye, C.; Smith, K.; Bateson, L.; Jordan, C.

    2010-12-01

    A new approach for rapidly mapping large volcanic areas has enabled identification of the spatial relationship between lava flows at the scale of single eruptive units, and the temporal development of faults associated with continental rifting. This integrated geological mapping approach involving remote sensing and three-dimensional image analysis has been applied to the Afar Region of the African Rift. We analyse topography and surface rock chemistry based false colour Landsat, ASTER and Lidar imagery within an immersive three-dimensional visualisation suite using SocetSet and Geovisionary software. This remote data is ground-proofed by the targeted field studies. This method is proving to be particularly successful in producing a subdivision of basaltic lava flows based on surface features and morphology of flow lobes where chemostratigraphic applications fail to identify individual eruption units. The high-resolution record has facilitated investigations of the style and size of fissure eruptions, their source, the processes affecting synchronous basaltic and felsic volcanic activity, and the style and duration of basaltic lava flow emplacement. The success of this technique is particularly significant when working in areas which are difficult to access, and may be applied in the future within environmentally or logistically challenging regions.

  5. Plumes Do Not Exist

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamilton, W. B.; Anderson, D. L.; Foulger, G. R.; Winterer, E. L.

    Hypothetical plumes from the deep mantle are widely assumed to provide an abso- lute hotspot reference frame, inaugurate rifting, drive plates, and profoundly influence magmatic and tectonic evolution of oceans and continents. Many papers on local to global tectonics, magmatism, and geochemistry invoke plumes, and assign to the man- tle whatever properties, dynamics, and composition are needed to enable them. The fixed-plume concept arose from the Emperor-Hawaii seamount-and-island province, the 45 Ma inflection in which was assumed to record a 60-degree change in direction by the Pacific plate. Paleomagnetic latitudes and smooth Pacific spreading patterns show that such a change did not occur. Other Pacific chains once assumed to be syn- chronous with, and Euler-parallel to, Hawaii have proved to be neither. Thermal and physical properties of Hawaiian lithosphere falsify plume predictions. Rationales for fixed hotspots elsewhere also have become untenable as databases enlarged. Astheno- sphere is everywhere near solidus temperature, so buoyant melt does not require a local heat source but, rather, needs a thin roof or crack or tensional setting for egress. MORB and ocean-island basalt (OIB) broadly intergrade in composition, but MORB typically is richer in refractory elements and their radiogenic daughters, whereas OIB commonly is richer in fusible elements and their daughters. MORB and OIB contrasts are required by melt behavior and do not indicate unlike source reservoirs. MORB melts rise, with minimal reaction, through hot asthenosphere, whereas OIB melts re- act, and thereby lose substance, by crystallizing refractories and retaining and assim- ilating subordinate fusibles, with thick, cool lithosphere and crust. There is no need for hypotheses involving chaotic plume behavior or thousands of km of lateral flow of plume material, nor for postulates of SprimitiveT lower mantle contrary to cos- & cedil;mological and thermodynamic considerations. Plume

  6. Mantle dynamics following supercontinent formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heron, Philip J.

    This thesis presents mantle convection numerical simulations of supercontinent formation. Approximately 300 million years ago, through the large-scale subduction of oceanic sea floor, continental material amalgamated to form the supercontinent Pangea. For 100 million years after its formation, Pangea remained relatively stationary, and subduction of oceanic material featured on its margins. The present-day location of the continents is due to the rifting apart of Pangea, with supercontinent dispersal being characterized by increased volcanic activity linked to the generation of deep mantle plumes. The work presented here investigates the thermal evolution of mantle dynamics (e.g., mantle temperatures and sub-continental plumes) following the formation of a supercontinent. Specifically, continental insulation and continental margin subduction are analyzed. Continental material, as compared to oceanic material, inhibits heat flow from the mantle. Previous numerical simulations have shown that the formation of a stationary supercontinent would elevate sub-continental mantle temperatures due to the effect of continental insulation, leading to the break-up of the continent. By modelling a vigorously convecting mantle that features thermally and mechanically distinct continental and oceanic plates, this study shows the effect of continental insulation on the mantle to be minimal. However, the formation of a supercontinent results in sub-continental plume formation due to the re-positioning of subduction zones to the margins of the continent. Accordingly, it is demonstrated that continental insulation is not a significant factor in producing sub-supercontinent plumes but that subduction patterns control the location and timing of upwelling formation. A theme throughout the thesis is an inquiry into why geodynamic studies would produce different results. Mantle viscosity, Rayleigh number, continental size, continental insulation, and oceanic plate boundary evolution are

  7. Zoned mantle convection.

    PubMed

    Albarède, Francis; Van Der Hilst, Rob D

    2002-11-15

    We review the present state of our understanding of mantle convection with respect to geochemical and geophysical evidence and we suggest a model for mantle convection and its evolution over the Earth's history that can reconcile this evidence. Whole-mantle convection, even with material segregated within the D" region just above the core-mantle boundary, is incompatible with the budget of argon and helium and with the inventory of heat sources required by the thermal evolution of the Earth. We show that the deep-mantle composition in lithophilic incompatible elements is inconsistent with the storage of old plates of ordinary oceanic lithosphere, i.e. with the concept of a plate graveyard. Isotopic inventories indicate that the deep-mantle composition is not correctly accounted for by continental debris, primitive material or subducted slabs containing normal oceanic crust. Seismological observations have begun to hint at compositional heterogeneity in the bottom 1000 km or so of the mantle, but there is no compelling evidence in support of an interface between deep and shallow mantle at mid-depth. We suggest that in a system of thermochemical convection, lithospheric plates subduct to a depth that depends - in a complicated fashion - on their composition and thermal structure. The thermal structure of the sinking plates is primarily determined by the direction and rate of convergence, the age of the lithosphere at the trench, the sinking rate and the variation of these parameters over time (i.e. plate-tectonic history) and is not the same for all subduction systems. The sinking rate in the mantle is determined by a combination of thermal (negative) and compositional buoyancy and as regards the latter we consider in particular the effect of the loading of plates with basaltic plateaux produced by plume heads. Barren oceanic plates are relatively buoyant and may be recycled preferentially in the shallow mantle. Oceanic plateau-laden plates have a more pronounced

  8. Zoned mantle convection.

    PubMed

    Albarède, Francis; Van Der Hilst, Rob D

    2002-11-15

    We review the present state of our understanding of mantle convection with respect to geochemical and geophysical evidence and we suggest a model for mantle convection and its evolution over the Earth's history that can reconcile this evidence. Whole-mantle convection, even with material segregated within the D" region just above the core-mantle boundary, is incompatible with the budget of argon and helium and with the inventory of heat sources required by the thermal evolution of the Earth. We show that the deep-mantle composition in lithophilic incompatible elements is inconsistent with the storage of old plates of ordinary oceanic lithosphere, i.e. with the concept of a plate graveyard. Isotopic inventories indicate that the deep-mantle composition is not correctly accounted for by continental debris, primitive material or subducted slabs containing normal oceanic crust. Seismological observations have begun to hint at compositional heterogeneity in the bottom 1000 km or so of the mantle, but there is no compelling evidence in support of an interface between deep and shallow mantle at mid-depth. We suggest that in a system of thermochemical convection, lithospheric plates subduct to a depth that depends - in a complicated fashion - on their composition and thermal structure. The thermal structure of the sinking plates is primarily determined by the direction and rate of convergence, the age of the lithosphere at the trench, the sinking rate and the variation of these parameters over time (i.e. plate-tectonic history) and is not the same for all subduction systems. The sinking rate in the mantle is determined by a combination of thermal (negative) and compositional buoyancy and as regards the latter we consider in particular the effect of the loading of plates with basaltic plateaux produced by plume heads. Barren oceanic plates are relatively buoyant and may be recycled preferentially in the shallow mantle. Oceanic plateau-laden plates have a more pronounced

  9. Carbon isotope and abundance systematics of Icelandic geothermal gases, fluids and subglacial basalts with implications for mantle plume-related CO2 fluxes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barry, P. H.; Hilton, D. R.; Füri, E.; Halldórsson, S. A.; Grönvold, K.

    2014-06-01

    We report new carbon dioxide (CO2) abundance and isotope data for 71 geothermal gases and fluids from both high-temperature (HT > 150 °C at 1 km depth) and low-temperature (LT < 150 °C at 1 km depth) geothermal systems located within neovolcanic zones and older segments of the Icelandic crust, respectively. These data are supplemented by CO2 data obtained by stepped heating of 47 subglacial basaltic glasses collected from the neovolcanic zones. The sample suite has been characterized previously for He-Ne (geothermal) and He-Ne-Ar (basalt) systematics (Füri et al., 2010), allowing elemental ratios to be calculated for individual samples. Geothermal fluids are characterized by a wide range in carbon isotope ratios (δ13C), from -18.8‰ to +4.6‰ (vs. VPDB), and CO2/3He values that span eight orders of magnitude, from 1 × 104 to 2 × 1012. Extreme geothermal values suggest that original source compositions have been extensively modified by hydrothermal processes such as degassing and/or calcite precipitation. Basaltic glasses are also characterized by a wide range in δ13C values, from -27.2‰ to -3.6‰, whereas CO2/3He values span a narrower range, from 1 × 108 to 1 × 1012. The combination of both low δ13C values and low CO2 contents in basalts indicates that magmas are extensively and variably degassed. Using an equilibrium degassing model, we estimate that pre-eruptive basaltic melts beneath Iceland contain ∼531 ± 64 ppm CO2 with δ13C values of -2.5 ± 1.1‰, in good agreement with estimates from olivine-hosted melt inclusions (Metrich et al., 1991) and depleted MORB mantle (DMM) CO2 source estimates (Marty, 2012). In addition, pre-eruptive CO2 compositions are estimated for individual segments of the Icelandic axial rift zones, and show a marked decrease from north to south (Northern Rift Zone = 550 ± 66 ppm; Eastern Rift Zone = 371 ± 45 ppm; Western Rift Zone = 206 ± 24 ppm). Notably, these results are model dependent, and selection of a lower

  10. Tracking Iceland Plume Motion Using Trace Element Geochemistry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fitton, J. G.; Walters, R. L.; Jones, S. M.

    2011-12-01

    The Greenland-Scotland Ridge (GSR) is a hotspot track built by interaction between the Mid Atlantic Ridge (MAR) and the Iceland mantle plume. Unlike most other hotspot tracks built by ridge-plume interaction, the GSR is 2 to 3 times wider than the plume conduit in the upper mantle. (This unusual wide morphology arises because Icelandic crust changes significantly in thickness within a few million years of accretion, probably mainly by viscous flow in the hot lower crust). The upshot is that the GSR cannot be compared directly with theoretical plume tracks from hotspot reference frame models. However, it is possible to track the position of the Iceland plume conduit using the trace element geochemistry of basaltic lavas. Away from the plume conduit, plate spreading drives upwelling of mantle through the melting region. Above the plume conduit, plume-driven flow forces mantle through the lower part of the melting region faster than the plate-driven upwelling rate. The average depth of melting is therefore greater directly above the plume conduit than away from the plume conduit, and this difference in average melting depth means that melts generated directly above the plume conduit are relatively enriched in incompatible trace elements. Joint modelling of trace element compositions and crustal thickness can also be used to establish location of melting relative to the plume conduit. To date, these concepts have been used only to explain compositional variations in modern (post-glacial) Icelandic lavas; in this study we show that the same concepts can be applied to map the location of the plume conduit throughout the onshore Icelandic geological record (since the middle Miocene, c. 16 Ma). The plume track thus determined is in reasonable agreement with theoretical tracks calculated under the assumption that the Iceland Plume has remained fixed relative to other Indo-Atlantic hotspots. This result also supports the idea that episodic relocations of the onshore part of

  11. Thermal and Chemical Structures at the Core-Mantle Boundary: Implications for the Mantle Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stein, C.; Mertens, M.; Hansen, U.

    2013-12-01

    The core-mantle boundary (CMB) represents the lower boundary layer of the actively convecting Earth's mantle and is structurally very complex. For example, large low shear wave velocity provinces (LLSVPs) but also small-scale ultra-low velocity zones (ULVZs) have been detected seismically. Thermal and chemical structures such as thermal plumes and thermochemical piles have been considered to explain the complexities. Both affect the dynamics of the Earth's mantle and its temporal evolution. But also the surface plates are an essential aspect of mantle convection that strongly influence the dynamics of the interior. Cold subducting slabs penetrating the lower boundary layer will also affect the CMB topography. To study the structure and dynamics of the lower mantle we use numerical thermochemical models of mantle convection with a complex rheological approach, including a strong temperature-, stress- and pressure-dependent viscosity. This allows for the investigation of thermal plumes and thermochemical piles in combination with plate-like surface motion and deep subduction. In thermochemical convection dense material is viscously trapped by the flow and piled beneath plumes. The presence of the dense layer reduces the mobility of the surface plates but during plate evolution we find a variety of plume classes (plumes, thermals, line-plumes) leaving a complex structure in the CMB topography.

  12. Evolution of continental-scale drainage in response to mantle dynamics and surface processes: An example from the Ethiopian Highlands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sembroni, Andrea; Molin, Paola; Pazzaglia, Frank J.; Faccenna, Claudio; Abebe, Bekele

    2016-05-01

    Ethiopia offers an excellent opportunity to study the effects and linkage between mantle dynamics and surface processes on landscape evolution. The Ethiopian Highlands (NW Ethiopia), characterized by a huge basaltic plateau, is part of the African Superswell, a wide region of dynamically-supported anomalously high topography related to the rising of the Afar plume. The initiation and steadiness of dynamic support beneath Ethiopia has been explored in several studies. However the presence, role, and timing of dynamic support beneath Ethiopia and its relationship with continental flood basalts volcanism and surface processes are poorly defined. Here, we present a geomorphological analysis of the Ethiopian Highlands supplying new constraints on the evolution of river network. We investigated the general topographic features (filtered topography, swath profiles, local relief) and the river network (river longitudinal profiles) of the study area. We also apply a knickpoint celerity model in order to provide a chronological framework to the evolution of the river network. The results trace the long-term progressive capture of the Ethiopian Highlands drainage system and confirm the long-term dynamic support of the area, documenting its impact on the contrasting development of the Blue Nile and Tekeze basins.

  13. Evolution of continental-scale drainage in response to mantle dynamics and surface processes: an example from the Ethiopian Highlands.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sembroni, Andrea; Molin, Paola; Pazzaglia, Frank J.; Faccenna, Claudio; Abebe, Bekele

    2016-04-01

    Ethiopia offers an excellent opportunity to study the effects and linkage between mantle dynamics and surface processes on landscape evolution. The Ethiopian Highlands (NW Ethiopia), characterized by a huge basaltic plateau, is part of the African Superswell, a wide region of dynamically-supported anomalously high topography related to the rising of the Afar plume. The initiation and steadiness of dynamic support beneath Ethiopia has been explored in several studies. However the presence, role, and timing of dynamic support beneath Ethiopia and its relationship with continental flood basalts volcanism and surface processes are poorly defined. Here, we present a geomorphological analysis of the Ethiopian Highlands supplying new constrains on the evolution of river network. We investigated the general topographic features (filtered topography, swath profiles, local relief) and the river network (river longitudinal profiles) of the study area. We also apply a knickpoint celerity model in order to provide a chronological framework to the evolution of the river network. The results trace the long-term progressive capture of the Ethiopian Highlands drainage system and confirm the long-term dynamic support of the area, documenting its impact on the contrasting development of the Blue Nile and Tekeze basins.

  14. Magmatism on rift flanks: insights from Ambient-Noise Phase-velocity in Afar region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Korostelev, Félicie; Weemstra, Cornelis; Leroy, Sylvie; Boschi, Lapo; Ren, Yong; Ahmed, Abdulhakim; Keir, Derek; Stuart, Graham W.; Rolandone, Frédérique; Khanbari, Khaled; Hammond, James O. S.; Kendall, J. Michael; Doubre, Cécile; Ganad, Ismail Al

    2015-04-01

    During the breakup of continent in the presence of magma, strain is commonly assumed to initially occur by border faulting, and progressively migrate in space and time towards axial magma intrusion. Magmatic processes near the rift flanks are commonly ignored. We present phase-velocity maps of the crust and uppermost mantle of the conjugate margins of the southern Red Sea (Afar and Yemen) using ambient noise tomography to constrain crustal modification during breakup. Our images show that the low seismic velocities characterize not only upper crust beneath the axial volcanic systems, but also both upper and lower crust beneath rift flanks where ongoing volcanism and hydrothermal activity occurs at the surface. The results show that magmatic modification of the crust beneath rift flanks likely occurs for a protracted period of time during the breakup process, and may persist through to early seafloor spreading. Since ongoing flank magmatism during breakup impacts the thermal evolution of the lithosphere, it has implications for the subsidence history of the rift.

  15. Not so hot "hot spots" in the oceanic mantle.

    PubMed

    Bonath, E

    1990-10-01

    Excess volcanism and crustal swelling associated with hot spots are generally attributed to thermal plumes upwelling from the mantle. This concept has been tested in the portion of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge between 34 degrees and 45 degrees (Azores hot spot). Peridotite and basalt data indicate that the upper mantle in the hot spot has undergone a high degree of melting relative to the mantle elsewhere in the North Atlantic. However, application of various geothermometers suggests that the temperature of equilibration of peridotites in the mantle was lower, or at least not higher, in the hot spot than elsewhere. The presence of H(2)O-rich metasomatized mantle domains, inferred from peridotite and basalt data, would lower the melting temperature of the hot spot mantle and thereby reconcile its high degree ofmelting with the lack of a mantle temperature anomaly. Thus, some so-called hot spots might be melting anomalies unrelated to abnormally high mantle temperature or thermal plumes.

  16. Viscosity jump in Earth's mid-mantle.

    PubMed

    Rudolph, Maxwell L; Lekić, Vedran; Lithgow-Bertelloni, Carolina

    2015-12-11

    The viscosity structure of Earth's deep mantle affects the thermal evolution of Earth, the ascent of mantle plumes, settling of subducted oceanic lithosphere, and the mixing of compositional heterogeneities in the mantle. Based on a reanalysis of the long-wavelength nonhydrostatic geoid, we infer viscous layering of the mantle using a method that allows us to avoid a priori assumptions about its variation with depth. We detect an increase in viscosity at 800- to 1200-kilometers depth, far greater than the depth of the mineral phase transformations that define the mantle transition zone. The viscosity increase is coincident in depth with regions where seismic tomography has imaged slab stagnation, plume deflection, and changes in large-scale structure and offers a simple explanation of these phenomena.

  17. Geochemistry of mid ocean ridge basalts (MORB) from the northern Central Indian Ridge between 7°46 and 13°20 S: Implication of mantle heterogeneity influenced by Reunion hotspot plume?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, J.; Lee, I.; Lee, S.; Kim, J.

    2010-12-01

    Between the Rodrigues Triple Junction (RTJ) and Carlsberg Ridge, The Central Indian Ridge (CIR) is a slow-intermediate spreading-rate (~ 43mm/year) plate boundary formed during separation of the Mascarene Plateau from the Chagos-Lacadives Ridge. Although several samplings of basaltic rocks were carried out in previous explorations on Indian Ridge, no systematic studies on the petrogenesis of CIR, especially for north of 18°S have been reported yet. We present the major and trace element composition of lavas dredged along the spreading axis of the northern CIR between 7°46 and 13°20 S. The mineralogy of the CIR MORB mainly consists of tiny needle- and/or lath-like plagioclase microlites (~45%), sub- to anhedral olivine (~15%), small anhedral clino-pyroxene (~10%), and intersertal/intergranular Fe-Ti oxide glass matrix (~30%). In the whole rock and glass chemistry, the samples show the very similar pattern of compositional variation in SiO2, Al2O3, FeO, and CaO concentration against MgO (6.59 ~ 8.68 wt %), although relatively less compatible elements (TiO2, Na2O, K2O, and P2O5) show linear trend. Plottings of Na8.0, Fe8.0, and CaO/Al2O3 vs. depth are examined to check the varying extents of partial melting and the global correlations. The results broadly agree with the global trend of MORB and fall within the dry MORB domain. Concentration of light rare earth elements (LREE) vary widely in the analyzed rock samples ((La/Sm)N ≈ 0.68 ~ 1.41 and (Nb/Yb)N ≈ 0.42 ~ 1.93). In spider diagram normalized by primitive mantle, the volcanic lavas show systematic increase of incompatible element concentration from south (segment 1) to north (segment 5), which could be attributed to the influence of enriched source in south of the study area. However, basalts from segment 2 are significantly enriched in incompatible elements. Plots of the ratios of several incompatible elements versus La/Sm ratio show a linear trend which could be attributed to the mixing of depleted and

  18. Geodetic measurements and numerical models of the Afar rifting sequence 2005-2010

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ali, T.; Feigl, K.; Calais, E.; Hamling, I. J.; Wright, T. J.

    2012-12-01

    Rifting episodes are characterized by magma migration and dike intrusions that perturb the stress field within the surrounding lithosphere, inducing viscous flow in the lower crust and upper mantle that leads to observable, transient surface deformation. The Manda Hararo-Dabbahu rifting episode that occurred in the Afar depression between 2005 and 2010 is the first such episode to unfold fully in the era of satellite geodesy, thus providing a unique opportunity to probe the rheology of lithosphere at a divergent plate boundary. GPS and SAR measurements over the region since 2005 show accelerated surface deformation rates during post-diking intervals [Wright et al., Nature Geosci., 2012]. Using these observations in combination with a numerical model, we estimate model parameters that best explain the deformation signal. Our model accounts for three distinct processes: (i) secular plate spreading between Nubian and Arabian plates, (ii) time dependent post-rifting viscoelastic relaxation following the 14 dike intrusions that occurred between 2005 and 2010, including the 60 km long mega dike intrusion of September 2005, and (iii) magma accumulation within crustal reservoirs that feed the dikes. To model the time dependent deformation field, we use the open-source unstructured finite element code, Defmod [Ali, 2011, http://defmod.googlecode.com/]. Using a gradient-based iterative scheme [Ali and Feigl, Geochem. Geophys. Geosyst., 2012], we optimize the fit between observed and modeled deformation to estimate parameters in the model, including the locking depth of the rift zone, geometry and depth of magma reservoirs and rheological properties of lower crust and upper mantle, along with their formal uncertainties.

  19. Three-dimensional simulations of plume-lithosphere interaction at the hawaiian swell

    PubMed

    Moore; Schubert; Tackley

    1998-02-13

    Rapid lithospheric thinning by mantle plumes has not been achieved in numerical experiments performed to date. Efficient thinning depends on small-scale instabilities that convectively remove lithospheric material. These instabilities are favored by hotter plumes or stronger temperature dependence of viscosity, and a simple scaling independent of rheology controls their onset. This scaling allows extrapolation of the results of numerical experiments to the Earth's mantle. Mantle plumes between 100 and 150 kelvins hotter than the background mantle should exhibit small-scale convective rolls aligned with the plate motion. The unusual variation in heat flow across the Hawaiian swell may be due to such instabilities. It was found that the spreading of the plume creates a downwelling curtain of material that isolates it from the rest of the mantle for distances of at least 1000 kilometers from the plume origin. This isolation has important consequences for the geochemical heterogeneity of the lithosphere and upper mantle.

  20. Birch's Mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anderson, D. L.

    2002-12-01

    Francis Birch's 1952 paper started the sciences of mineral physics and physics of the Earth's interior. Birch stressed the importance of pressure, compressive strain and volume in mantle physics. Although this may seem to be an obvious lesson many modern paradoxes in the internal constitution of the Earth and mantle dynamics can be traced to a lack of appreciation for the role of compression. The effect of pressure on thermal properties such as expansivity can gravitational stratify the Earth irreversibly during accretion and can keep it chemically stratified. The widespread use of the Boussinesq approximation in mantle geodynamics is the antithesis of Birchian physics. Birch pointed out that eclogite was likely to be an important component of the upper mantle. Plate tectonic recycling and the bouyancy of oceanic crust at midmantle depths gives credence to this suggestion. Although peridotite dominates the upper mantle, variations in eclogite-content may be responsible for melting- or fertility-spots. Birch called attention to the Repetti Discontinuity near 900 km depth as an important geodynamic boundary. This may be the chemical interface between the upper and lower mantles. Recent work in geodynamics and seismology has confirmed the importance of this region of the mantle as a possible barrier. Birch regarded the transition region (TR ; 400 to 1000 km ) as the key to many problems in Earth sciences. The TR contains two major discontinuities ( near 410 and 650 km ) and their depths are a good mantle thermometer which is now being exploited to suggest that much of plate tectonics is confined to the upper mantle ( in Birch's terminology, the mantle above 1000 km depth ). The lower mantle is homogeneous and different from the upper mantle. Density and seismic velocity are very insensitive to temperature there, consistent with tomography. A final key to the operation of the mantle is Birch's suggestion that radioactivities were stripped out of the deeper parts of

  1. Mapping the Hawaiian plume conduit with converted seismic waves

    PubMed

    Li; Kind; Priestley; Sobolev; Tilmann; Yuan; Weber

    2000-06-22

    The volcanic edifice of the Hawaiian islands and seamounts, as well as the surrounding area of shallow sea floor known as the Hawaiian swell, are believed to result from the passage of the oceanic lithosphere over a mantle hotspot. Although geochemical and gravity observations indicate the existence of a mantle thermal plume beneath Hawaii, no direct seismic evidence for such a plume in the upper mantle has yet been found. Here we present an analysis of compressional-to-shear (P-to-S) converted seismic phases, recorded on seismograph stations on the Hawaiian islands, that indicate a zone of very low shear-wave velocity (< 4 km s(-1)) starting at 130-140 km depth beneath the central part of the island of Hawaii and extending deeper into the upper mantle. We also find that the upper-mantle transition zone (410-660 km depth) appears to be thinned by up to 40-50 km to the south-southwest of the island of Hawaii. We interpret these observations as localized effects of the Hawaiian plume conduit in the asthenosphere and mantle transition zone with excess temperature of approximately 300 degrees C. Large variations in the transition-zone thickness suggest a lower-mantle origin of the Hawaiian plume similar to the Iceland plume, but our results indicate a 100 degrees C higher temperature for the Hawaiian plume.

  2. Petrological constraints on evolution of continental lithospheric mantle beneath the northwestern Ethiopian plateau: Insight from mantle xenoliths from the Gundeweyn area, East Gojam, Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alemayehu, Melesse; Zhang, Hong-Fu; Zhu, Bin; Fentie, Birhanu; Abraham, Samuel; Haji, Muhammed

    2016-01-01

    Detailed petrographical observations and in-situ major- and trace-element data for minerals from ten spinel peridotite xenoliths from a new locality in Gundeweyn area, East Gojam, have been examined in order to understand the composition, equilibrium temperature and pressure conditions as well as depletion and enrichment processes of continental lithospheric mantle beneath the Ethiopian plateau. The peridotite samples are very fresh and, with the exception of one spinel harzburgite, are all spinel lherzolites. Texturally, the xenoliths can be divided into two groups as primary and secondary textures. Primary textures are protogranular and porphyroclastic while secondary ones include reaction, spongy and lamellae textures. The Fo content of olivine and Cr# of spinel ranges from 86.5 to 90.5 and 7.7 to 14.1 in the lherzolites, respectively and are 89.8 and 49.8, respectively, in the harzburgite. All of the lherzolites fall into the lower Cr# and Fo region in the olivine-spinel mantle array than the harzburgite, which indicates that they are fertile peridotites that experienced low degrees of partial melting and melt extraction. Orthopyroxene and clinopyroxene show variable Cr2O3 and Al2O3 contents regardless of their lithology. The Mg# of orthopyroxene and clinopyroxene are 87.3 to 90.1 and 85.8 to 90.5 for lherzolite and 90.4 and 91.2 for harzburgite, respectively. The peridotites have been equilibrated at a temperature and pressure ranging from 850 to 1100 °C and 10.2 to 30 kbar, respectively, with the highest pressure record from the harzburgite. They record high mantle heat flow between 60 and 150 mW/m2, which is not typical for continental environments (40 mW/m2). Such a high geotherm in continental area shows the presence of active mantle upwelling beneath the Ethiopian plateau, which is consistent with the tectonic setting of nearby area of the Afar plume. Clinopyroxene of five lherzolites and one harzburgite samples have a LREE enriched pattern and the rest

  3. Mantle metasomatism

    SciTech Connect

    Menzies, M.; Hawkesworth, C.

    1986-01-01

    The concept of metasomatism and its role in the geochemical enrichment and depletion processes in upper mantle rocks remains contentious. This volume makes a comprehensive contribution to the study of metasomatic and enrichment processes: origin and importance in determining trace element and isotopic heterogeneity in the lithospheric mantle. It begins with a theoretical thermodynamic and experimental justification for metasomatism and proceeds to present evidence for this process from the study of mantle xenoliths. Finally the importance of metasomatism in relation to basaltic volcanism is assessed. The contents are as follows: Dynamics of Translithospheric Migration of Metasomatic Fluid and Alkaline Magma. Solubility of Major and Trace Elements in Mantle Metasomatic Fluids: Experimental Constraints. Mineralogic and Geochemical Evidence for Differing Styles of Metasomatism in Spinel Lherzolite Xenoliths: Enriched Mantle Source Regions of Basalts. Characterization of Mantle Metasomatic Fluids in Spinel Lherzolites and Alkali Clinophyroyxenites from the West Eifel and South-West Uganda. Metasomatised Harzburgites in Kimberlite and Alkaline Magmas: Enriched Resites and ''Flushed'' Lherzolites. Metasomatic and Enrichment Phenomena in Garnet-Peridotite Facies Mantle Xenoliths from the Matsoku Kimberlite Pipe Lesotho. Evidence for Mantle Metasomatism in Periodite Nodules from the Kimberley Pipes South Africa. Metasomatic and Enrichment Processes in Lithospheric Peridotites, an Effective of Asthenosphere-Lithosphere Interaction. Isotope Variations in Recent Volcanics: A Trace Element Perspective. Source Regions of Mid-Ocean Ridge Basalts: Evidence for Enrichment Processes. The Mantle Source for the Hawaiian Islands: Constraints from the Lavas and Ultramafic Inclusions.

  4. The planet beyond the plume hypothesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, Alan D.; Lewis, Charles

    1999-12-01

    Acceptance of the theory of plate tectonics was accompanied by the rise of the mantle plume/hotspot concept which has come to dominate geodynamics from its use both as an explanation for the origin of intraplate volcanism and as a reference frame for plate motions. However, even with a large degree of flexibility permitted in plume composition, temperature, size, and depth of origin, adoption of any limited number of hotspots means the plume model cannot account for all occurrences of the type of volcanism it was devised to explain. While scientific protocol would normally demand that an alternative explanation be sought, there have been few challenges to "plume theory" on account of a series of intricate controls set up by the plume model which makes plumes seem to be an essential feature of the Earth. The hotspot frame acts not only as a reference but also controls plate tectonics. Accommodating plumes relegates mantle convection to a weak, sluggish effect such that basal drag appears as a minor, resisting force, with plates having to move themselves by boundary forces and continents having to be rifted by plumes. Correspondingly, the geochemical evolution of the mantle is controlled by the requirement to isolate subducted crust into plume sources which limits potential buffers on the composition of the MORB-source to plume- or lower mantle material. Crustal growth and Precambrian tectonics are controlled by interpretations of greenstone belts as oceanic plateaus generated by plumes. Challenges to any aspect of the plume model are thus liable to be dismissed unless a counter explanation is offered across the geodynamic spectrum influenced by "plume theory". Nonetheless, an alternative synthesis can be made based on longstanding petrological evidence for derivation of intraplate volcanism from volatile-bearing sources (wetspots) in conjunction with concepts dismissed for being incompatible or superfluous to "plume theory". In the alternative Earth, the sources for

  5. Volatiles, rheology, and mantle convection: Comparing Earth, Venus, and Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kiefer, Walter S.

    1994-01-01

    Silicate rheology is controlled in part by volatile content. The variation of viscosity with position in the mantle will influence the nature of mantle convection; hence, modeling mantle convection and its effect on surface observables such as the geoid places constraints on the viscosity structure of a planet's mantle and may indirectly constrain the volatile distribution. Models of viscous mantle flow and the Earth's geoid indicate that there is roughly a two order of magnitude variation in viscosity between the upper and lower mantles, although there is some disagreement over the depth of the viscosity minimum in the upper mantle. Some studies of post-glacial rebound also support such a viscosity contrast between the upper and lower mantles. On Venus, several highland regions appear to be supported by mantle plumes. Modeling of the geoid and topography of these regions indicates that if these features are plume-related, then the mantle of Venus can not have an Earth-like low viscosity zone in its upper mantle. On Mars, the Tharsis volcanic province has alternatively been explained as supported either by mantle convection or by flexure of a thick lithosphere. If the convective model is correct, then the large geoid anomaly requires that Mars can not have a low viscosity zone in its upper mantle.

  6. Superplumes and the Viscosity Structure of the Mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hansen, U.; Yuen, D.

    2004-05-01

    Seismological studies indicate the existence of large upwelling regions of complex structures in the lower mantle. A mantle flow model with only a few strong upwellings is an alternative to conventional convection models with respect not only to pattern of the flow but also to heat transport and mixing properties. By two- and three-dimensional numerical models we demonstrate that a significant increase of the viscosity with pressure in the lower mantle leads to a focusing of buoyancy into strong upwellings from the core-mantle boundary.This phenomenon is further enhanced by a thermal expansion coefficient which decreases with pressure. Besides pressure, the viscosity of the mantle material will strongly depend on temperature. Combining the effects of temperature and pressure-dependent viscosity, generates a significant viscosity maximum in the lower mantle. Pressure dependence let the viscosity increase from the upper to the lower mantle, temperature dependence, however, compensates this effect at greater depth. The spatiotemporal evolution of plumes is likewise influenced: While a purely pressure-dependent viscosity creates single plumes, additional temperature dependence leads to plume-clusters, characterized by instabilities at the core-mantle boundary, which are centered around a strong upwelling flow. These plumes generate a complex flow pattern at the base of the mantle.

  7. Tvashtar's Plume

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2007-01-01

    This dramatic image of Io was taken by the Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) on New Horizons at 11:04 Universal Time on February 28, 2007, just about 5 hours after the spacecraft's closest approach to Jupiter. The distance to Io was 2.5 million kilometers (1.5 million miles) and the image is centered at 85 degrees west longitude. At this distance, one LORRI pixel subtends 12 kilometers (7.4 miles) on Io.

    This processed image provides the best view yet of the enormous 290-kilometer (180-mile) high plume from the volcano Tvashtar, in the 11 o'clock direction near Io's north pole. The plume was first seen by the Hubble Space Telescope two weeks ago and then by New Horizons on February 26; this image is clearer than the February 26 image because Io was closer to the spacecraft, the plume was more backlit by the Sun, and a longer exposure time (75 milliseconds versus 20 milliseconds) was used. Io's dayside was deliberately overexposed in this picture to image the faint plumes, and the long exposure also provided an excellent view of Io's night side, illuminated by Jupiter. The remarkable filamentary structure in the Tvashtar plume is similar to details glimpsed faintly in 1979 Voyager images of a similar plume produced by Io's volcano Pele. However, no previous image by any spacecraft has shown these mysterious structures so clearly.

    The image also shows the much smaller symmetrical fountain of the plume, about 60 kilometers (or 40 miles) high, from the Prometheus volcano in the 9 o'clock direction. The top of a third volcanic plume, from the volcano Masubi, erupts high enough to catch the setting Sun on the night side near the bottom of the image, appearing as an irregular bright patch against Io's Jupiter-lit surface. Several Everest-sized mountains are highlighted by the setting Sun along the terminator, the line between day and night.

    This is the last of a handful of LORRI images that New Horizons is sending 'home' during its busy close

  8. Hard turbulent thermal convection and thermal evolution of the mantle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yuen, D. A.; Hansen, U.; Zhao, W.; Vincent, A. P.; Malevsky, A. V.

    1993-01-01

    Hard turbulent convection is investigated using laboratory experiments and numerical simulations. In Newtonian mantle convection, the appearance of disconnected plumes marks the transition from soft to hard turbulence. For non-Newtonian rheology, the transition to hard turbulence takes place at much lower Nusselt numbers than it does for Newtonian rheology. This has important ramifications for the mantle. Large curvatures are developed in the trajectories of non-Newtonian plumes in the hard turbulent regime, in contrast to the trajectories of Newtonian plumes. When phase transitions are considered, mantle convection tends to become more layered with increasing Rayleigh numbers. The manner of mantle convection might have changed with time from a layered to a more whole mantle type of flow. Superplume events could have been caused by catastrophic overturns associated with strong gravitational instabilities in the transition zone.

  9. Magma-maintained rift segmentation at continental rupture in the 2005 Afar dyking episode.

    PubMed

    Wright, Tim J; Ebinger, Cindy; Biggs, Juliet; Ayele, Atalay; Yirgu, Gezahegn; Keir, Derek; Stork, Anna

    2006-07-20

    Seafloor spreading centres show a regular along-axis segmentation thought to be produced by a segmented magma supply in the passively upwelling mantle. On the other hand, continental rifts are segmented by large offset normal faults, and many lack magmatism. It is unclear how, when and where the ubiquitous segmented melt zones are emplaced during the continental rupture process. Between 14 September and 4 October 2005, 163 earthquakes (magnitudes greater than 3.9) and a volcanic eruption occurred within the approximately 60-km-long Dabbahu magmatic segment of the Afar rift, a nascent seafloor spreading centre in stretched continental lithosphere. Here we present a three-dimensional deformation field for the Dabbahu rifting episode derived from satellite radar data, which shows that the entire segment ruptured, making it the largest to have occurred on land in the era of satellite geodesy. Simple elastic modelling shows that the magmatic segment opened by up to 8 m, yet seismic rupture can account for only 8 per cent of the observed deformation. Magma was injected along a dyke between depths of 2 and 9 km, corresponding to a total intrusion volume of approximately 2.5 km3. Much of the magma appears to have originated from shallow chambers beneath Dabbahu and Gabho volcanoes at the northern end of the segment, where an explosive fissural eruption occurred on 26 September 2005. Although comparable in magnitude to the ten year (1975-84) Krafla events in Iceland, seismic data suggest that most of the Dabbahu dyke intrusion occurred in less than a week. Thus, magma intrusion via dyking, rather than segmented normal faulting, maintains and probably initiated the along-axis segmentation along this sector of the Nubia-Arabia plate boundary. PMID:16855588

  10. InSAR observations of post-rifting deformation around the Dabbahu rift segment, Afar, Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamling, Ian J.; Wright, Tim J.; Calais, Eric; Lewi, Elias; Fukahata, Yukitoshi

    2014-04-01

    Increased displacement rates have been observed following manylarge earthquakes and magmatic events. Although an order of magnitude smaller than the displacements associated with the main event, the post-seismic or post-rifting deformation may continue for years to decades after the initial earthquake or dyke intrusion. Due to the rare occurrence of subaerial rifting events, there are very few observations to constrain models of post-rifting deformation. In 2005 September, a 60-km-long dyke was intruded along the Dabbahu segment of the Nubia-Arabia Plate boundary (Afar, Ethiopia), marking the beginning of an ongoing rifting episode. Continued activity has been monitored using satellite radar interferometry and data from global positioning system instruments deployed around the rift in response to the initial intrusion. Using multiple satellite passes, we are able to separate the rift perpendicular and vertical displacement fields around the Dabbahu segment. Rift perpendicular and vertical rates of up to 180 and 240 mm yr-1, respectively. Here, we show that models of viscoelastic relaxation alone are insufficient to reproduce the observed deformation field and that a large portion of the observed signal is related to the movement of magma within the rift segment. Our models suggest upper mantle viscosities of 1018-19 Pa s overlain by an elastic crust of between 15 and 30 km. To fit the observations, inflation and deflation of magma chambers in the centre of the rift and to the south east of the rift axis is required at rates of ˜0.13 and -0.08 km3 yr-1.

  11. Magma-maintained rift segmentation at continental rupture in the 2005 Afar dyking episode.

    PubMed

    Wright, Tim J; Ebinger, Cindy; Biggs, Juliet; Ayele, Atalay; Yirgu, Gezahegn; Keir, Derek; Stork, Anna

    2006-07-20

    Seafloor spreading centres show a regular along-axis segmentation thought to be produced by a segmented magma supply in the passively upwelling mantle. On the other hand, continental rifts are segmented by large offset normal faults, and many lack magmatism. It is unclear how, when and where the ubiquitous segmented melt zones are emplaced during the continental rupture process. Between 14 September and 4 October 2005, 163 earthquakes (magnitudes greater than 3.9) and a volcanic eruption occurred within the approximately 60-km-long Dabbahu magmatic segment of the Afar rift, a nascent seafloor spreading centre in stretched continental lithosphere. Here we present a three-dimensional deformation field for the Dabbahu rifting episode derived from satellite radar data, which shows that the entire segment ruptured, making it the largest to have occurred on land in the era of satellite geodesy. Simple elastic modelling shows that the magmatic segment opened by up to 8 m, yet seismic rupture can account for only 8 per cent of the observed deformation. Magma was injected along a dyke between depths of 2 and 9 km, corresponding to a total intrusion volume of approximately 2.5 km3. Much of the magma appears to have originated from shallow chambers beneath Dabbahu and Gabho volcanoes at the northern end of the segment, where an explosive fissural eruption occurred on 26 September 2005. Although comparable in magnitude to the ten year (1975-84) Krafla events in Iceland, seismic data suggest that most of the Dabbahu dyke intrusion occurred in less than a week. Thus, magma intrusion via dyking, rather than segmented normal faulting, maintains and probably initiated the along-axis segmentation along this sector of the Nubia-Arabia plate boundary.

  12. A long-lived ancient subduction-induced mantle boundary within the Pacific mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, G.; Smith-Duque, C. E.; Tang, S.; Li, S.; Alvarez Zarikian, C. A.; D'Hondt, S.; Inagaki, F.

    2012-12-01

    A large-scale mantle discontinuity has been identified along the East Pacific Rise (EPR) and the Pacific-Antarctic Ridge (PAR) with an inferred transition zone between the EPR 23°S-31°S. Because of strong interactions of the EPR with the Easter mantle plume, the nature and genesis of this geochemical transition zone remain unclear. IODP sites U1367 and U1368 drilled into the basement that was accreted from the mantle of the Pacific-Farallon/Nazca ridge at ~33.5 Ma and ~13.5 Ma, respectively, at latitudes of 28°S to 29°S on the EPR. Lavas from sites U1367 and U1368 are used here to track this mantle discontinuity away from the EPR. The Sr-Nd-Pb isotope data reported here show strong discrepancies between the two sites unrelated to the plume-ridge interaction. which suggests the persistence of a mantle boundary near latitudes of the Easter island since at least 33.5 Ma. Comparison of our data with those along the EPR-PAR defines an isotopic anomaly in the Pacific mantle with a mantle boundary near the EPR 29°S and a gentle transition near the PAR 57°S. This isotopic anomaly is coupled with a low-velocity zone near the core-mantle boundary in the south Pacific, low 3He/4He ratios of lavas, and shallow axial depth1 south of the EPR 29°S along the EPR-PAR. Interpretation of this mantle discontinuity involves an ancient subduction zone across the EPR 28°S-29°S that allowed long-lasting introduction of recycled oceanic crust and depleted mantle wedge into the south Pacific mantle. Lavas at sites U1367 and U1368 might have sampled mantle that once was part of this ancient subduction zone that remained largely intact and not stirred by mantle convection.

  13. Development of diapiric structures in the upper mantle due to phase transitions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Liu, M.; Yuen, D. A.; Zhao, W.; Honda, S.

    1991-01-01

    Solid-state phase transition in time-dependent mantle convection can induce diapiric flows in the upper mantle. When a deep mantle plume rises toward phase boundaries in the upper mantle, the changes in the local thermal buoyancy, local heat capacity, and latent heat associated with the phase change at a depth of 670 kilometers tend to pinch off the plume head from the feeding stem and form a diapir. This mechanism may explain episodic hot spot volcanism. The nature of the multiple phase boundaries at the boundary between the upper and lower mantle may control the fate of deep mantle plumes, allowing hot plumes to go through and retarding the tepid ones.

  14. Evolution of helium isotopes in the Earth's mantle.

    PubMed

    Class, Cornelia; Goldstein, Steven L

    2005-08-25

    Degassing of the Earth's mantle through magmatism results in the irreversible loss of helium to space, and high (3)He/(4)He ratios observed in oceanic basalts have been considered the main evidence for a 'primordial' undegassed deep mantle reservoir. Here we present a new global data compilation of ocean island basalts, representing upwelling 'plumes' from the deep mantle, and show that island groups with the highest primordial signal (high (3)He/(4)He ratios) have striking chemical and isotopic similarities to mid-ocean-ridge basalts. We interpret this as indicating a common history of mantle trace element depletion through magmatism. The high (3)He/(4)He in plumes may thus reflect incomplete degassing of the deep Earth during continent and ocean crust formation. We infer that differences between plumes and the upper-mantle source of ocean-ridge basalts reflect isolation of plume sources from the convecting mantle for approximately 1-2 Gyr. An undegassed, primordial reservoir in the mantle would therefore not be required, thus reconciling a long-standing contradiction in mantle dynamics.

  15. North Atlantic magmatism controlled by temperature, mantle composition and buoyancy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brown, Eric L.; Lesher, Charles E.

    2014-11-01

    Large igneous provinces are characterized by anomalously high rates of magma production. Such voluminous magmatism is commonly attributed to partial melting of hot, buoyantly upwelling mantle plume material. However, compositional heterogeneity in the mantle, caused by the subduction of oceanic crust, can also enhance magma production, diminishing the need for elevated temperatures associated with upwelling plumes. A plume origin for the North Atlantic large igneous province has been questioned because lava compositions correlate with crustal thickness, implying a link between magma productivity and mantle source composition. Here we use a numerical model that simulates upwelling and melting of compositionally heterogeneous mantle material to constrain the conditions that gave rise to magmatism in the North Atlantic. Using observations of lava compositions and volumes from the North Atlantic, we show that subducted crustal material represented less than 10% of the mantle source. We further show that mantle temperatures have remained elevated by 85-210 °C and increased mantle upwelling up to 14 times the rate of plate separation has occurred over the past 56 Myr. The enhanced temperatures and upwelling rates extended along more than 1,000 km of the Palaeogene rift, but are substantially more restricted along the modern Mid-Atlantic Ridge. These findings reflect the long-term manifestation of a mantle plume.

  16. Hotspots and the evolution of the mantle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anderson, D. L.

    1979-01-01

    Trace element patterns show that continental and ocean island basalts are complementary to mid-ocean ridge basalts (MORB). The relative sizes of the two source regions can be estimated from enrichment/depletion patterns. Their combined volume, computed from estimates of whole mantle abundances, occupies the entire upper mantle. The source regions appear to be the result of an early differentiation of the mantle. The MORB source evolved from the melt fraction which lost its late stage enriched fluids to the overlying plume source. The MORB source is primarily garnet and clinopyroxene, consistent with it being an eclogite cumulate.

  17. Two-way interaction between plume and slab: The Hainan-Manila example

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mériaux, Catherine; Duarte, João; Schellart, Wouter

    2015-04-01

    Three-dimensional upper-mantle laboratory models consisting of a compositional plume that is initiated underneath an entirely dynamically driven dense plate fixed at the surface along its trailing edge exhibit a two-way interaction between plume and slab. The slab influence on the plume is driven by the induced mantle flow generated by the plate motion, which includes a sinking and a retreating phase. Slab/Plume buoyancy flux ratios ranged between 7 and 18. In all models, the plume is being swept away from the slab during its rise, and once it has reached the surface, its head spreads towards the trench as a gravity current while its conduit keeps being deflected away. The plume influence on the slab is seen later, when the slab in its retreat gets closer to the plume. The plume buoyancy spreading under the slab then weakens the subduction rate. The degree to which the subduction rate is lessened is conditioned by the level of asymmetry, which the slab may develop along its free edge during its impact at the bottom surface. A lasting symmetric plate causes maximum disturbance of the plume to the slab retreat rate, while plate asymmetry alleviates the plume influence as the plume buoyancy is no longer trapped underneath the plate in its centreline but can escape sideways. Our laboratory model configuration applies to the Hainan plume and Manila subduction system. The geophysical and seismic observations showing the existence of a NW-SE tilting plume-like mantle low-velocity structure in the crust and in the mantle beneath the north Hainan Island-Leizhou Peninsula basalt province are explained by slab rollback induced toroidal mantle flow from the Manila subduction zone. On the basis of our models, it can be foreseen that the Hainan plume is to spread out under the Manila slab towards the mantle wedge in the future, which could lessen the Manila subduction rate.

  18. P- and S-wave delays caused by thermal plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maguire, Ross; Ritsema, Jeroen; van Keken, Peter E.; Fichtner, Andreas; Goes, Saskia

    2016-08-01

    Many studies have sought to seismically image plumes rising from the deep mantle in order to settle the debate about their presence and role in mantle dynamics, yet the predicted seismic signature of realistic plumes remains poorly understood. By combining numerical simulations of flow, mineral-physics constraints on the relationships between thermal anomalies and wave speeds, and spectral-element method based computations of seismograms, we estimate the delay times of teleseismic S and P waves caused by thermal plumes. Wave front healing is incomplete for seismic periods ranging from 10 s (relevant in traveltime tomography) to 40 s (relevant in waveform tomography). We estimate P-wave delays to be immeasurably small (<0.3 s). S-wave delays are larger than 0.4 s even for S waves crossing the conduits of the thinnest thermal plumes in our geodynamic models. At longer periods (>20 s), measurements of instantaneous phase misfit may be more useful in resolving narrow plume conduits. To detect S-wave delays of 0.4-0.8 s and the diagnostic frequency dependence imparted by plumes, it is key to minimize the influence of the heterogeneous crust and upper mantle. We argue that seismic imaging of plumes will advance significantly if data from wide-aperture ocean-bottom networks were available since, compared to continents, the oceanic crust and upper mantle are relatively simple.

  19. P and S wave delays caused by thermal plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maguire, Ross; Ritsema, Jeroen; van Keken, Peter E.; Fichtner, Andreas; Goes, Saskia

    2016-05-01

    Many studies have sought to seismically image plumes rising from the deep mantle in order to settle the debate about their presence and role in mantle dynamics, yet the predicted seismic signature of realistic plumes remains poorly understood. By combining numerical simulations of flow, mineral-physics constraints on the relationships between thermal anomalies and wave speeds, and spectral-element method based computations of seismograms, we estimate the delay times of teleseismic S and P waves caused by thermal plumes. Wavefront healing is incomplete for seismic periods ranging from 10 s (relevant in traveltime tomography) to 40 s (relevant in waveform tomography). We estimate P wave delays to be immeasurably small (< 0.3 s). S wave delays are larger than 0.4 s even for S waves crossing the conduits of the thinnest thermal plumes in our geodynamic models. At longer periods (> 20 s), measurements of instantaneous phase misfit may be more useful in resolving narrow plume conduits. To detect S wave delays of 0.4-0.8 s and the diagnostic frequency dependence imparted by plumes, it is key to minimize the influence of the heterogeneous crust and upper mantle. We argue that seismic imaging of plumes will advance significantly if data from wide-aperture ocean-bottom networks were available since, compared to continents, the oceanic crust and upper mantle is relatively simple.

  20. Interactions among mid-ocean ridges, plumes and Large Igneous Provinces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whittaker, J. M.; Afonso, J. C.; Masterton, S. M.; Müller, D.; Wessel, P.; Williams, S.; Seton, M.

    2015-12-01

    Plate tectonic motions are commonly considered to be driven by slab pull at subduction zones and ridge push at mid-ocean ridges (MORs), with motion punctuated by plumes of hot material rising from the lower mantle. Within this model, the geometry and location of MORs are considered to be independent from deeply sourced mantle plumes commonly implicated in the formation of Large Igneous Provinces (LIPs). Here we reconstruct the absolute locations of LIPs and MORs relative to plume locations, and find that LIPs predominantly form episodically at specific locations of MOR-plume interaction. Analysis of MOR and continental diverging plate boundary locations since 180 Myr reveals that long-standing MOR-plume interactions are enabled by slowly migrating ridge systems. We calculate how much mantle material was converted to oceanic lithosphere at the MORs and calculate that slowly migrating MORs have extracted large volumes of material from the same part of the upper mantle over periods up to 180 million years. The geochemical signatures of mid-ocean ridge basalts and seismic tomographic data show that upper-mantle temperatures are elevated at significant distances from ridge-plume interactions, indicating a far-field, indirect influence of plume-ridge interactions on the upper-mantle structure. In summary, long-standing interaction between divergent plate boundaries and mantle plumes, leading to the formation of LIPs, occurs in a much more systematic way than previously appreciated. The interaction of the surface spreading system with deeply sourced mantle plumes is an overlooked yet important aspect of the mantle circulation system, with likely implications for understanding a range of Earth system processes, such as evolution of the plate-mantle system, supercontinent assembly and dispersal, and patterns of ridge morphology and geochemistry.

  1. Vertically Discontinuous Seismic Signatures From Continuous Thermochemical Plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harris, A. C.; Kincaid, C.; Savage, B.

    2008-12-01

    To interpret seismic signatures associated with mantle upwellings, we must understand the distribution of thermochemical heterogeneities within mantle plumes. Thermochemical heterogeneities are expected to arise within plumes by the incorporation of subducted lithosphere (Eclogite and Harzburgite) that has reached the plume source region (thermal boundary layers in the mantle). We analyze laboratory experiments in conjunction with seismic velocity models to predict the seismic signature of thermochemical plumes. Laboratory experiments are fully three-dimensional and use glucose syrup (Rayleigh number: 106) to model the mantle and a two-layer subducted lithosphere, where composition (viscosity and density) is controlled by water content. Experiments show heterogeneous upwellings with variations in both temperature and composition that are more complex than predicted in previous plume models. Spatial distributions for temperature and composition in representative, repeatable types of thermochemical upwellings are tracked through time, scaled to mantle values and used to calculate predicted seismic velocities. Apparent seismic velocity signals are estimated for patterns in thermochemical heterogeneity with length scales ranging from 1 to 300 km and excess temperatures from 50 to 300°C. Results show that if plumes are purely thermal they can be identified in the usual way, by slow velocities. However, if plumes are a mixture of compositions, as predicted by laboratory models, their velocity structure is more complex. An Ecolgite lens within a plume at ~300km depth with an excess temperature of 250°C can have the same velocity as regular mantle with no excess temperature. A Harzburgite lobe of a plume head (up to half of the plume volume) at 300km depth with an excess temperature of 225°C can have the same Vs as regular mantle with no excess temperature, but can only mask up to 55°C in Vp. Spatial variations in temperature control velocity structure above 300km

  2. East Asia: Seismotectonics, magmatism and mantle dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Dapeng; Yu, Sheng; Ohtani, Eiji

    2011-02-01

    In this article, we review the significant recent results of geophysical studies and discuss their implications on seismotectonics, magmatism, and mantle dynamics in East Asia. High-resolution geophysical imaging revealed structural heterogeneities in the source areas of large crustal earthquakes, which may reflect magma and fluids that affected the rupture nucleation of large earthquakes. In subduction zone regions, the crustal fluids originate from the dehydration of the subducting slab. Magmatism in arc and back-arc areas is caused by the corner flow in the mantle wedge and dehydration of the subducting slab. The intraplate magmatism has different origins. The continental volcanoes in Northeast Asia (such as Changbai and Wudalianchi) seem to be caused by the corner flow in the big mantle wedge (BMW) above the stagnant slab in the mantle transition zone and the deep dehydration of the stagnant slab as well. The Tengchong volcano in Southwest China is possibly caused by a similar process in BMW above the subducting Burma microplate (or Indian plate). The Hainan volcano in southernmost China seems to be a hotspot fed by a lower-mantle plume associated with the Pacific and Philippine Sea slabs' deep subduction in the east and the Indian slab's deep subduction in the west down to the lower mantle. 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 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 beneath the subducting slabs and cause the slab-plume interactions. Some of these issues, such as the origin of intraplate magmatism, are still controversial, and so further detailed studies are needed from now.

  3. Chondritic xenon in the Earth's mantle.

    PubMed

    Caracausi, Antonio; Avice, Guillaume; Burnard, Peter G; Füri, Evelyn; Marty, Bernard

    2016-05-01

    Noble gas isotopes are powerful tracers of the origins of planetary volatiles, and the accretion and evolution of the Earth. The compositions of magmatic gases provide insights into the evolution of the Earth's mantle and atmosphere. Despite recent analytical progress in the study of planetary materials and mantle-derived gases, the possible dual origin of the planetary gases in the mantle and the atmosphere remains unconstrained. Evidence relating to the relationship between the volatiles within our planet and the potential cosmochemical end-members is scarce. Here we show, using high-precision analysis of magmatic gas from the Eifel volcanic area (in Germany), that the light xenon isotopes identify a chondritic primordial component that differs from the precursor of atmospheric xenon. This is consistent with an asteroidal origin for the volatiles in the Earth's mantle, and indicates that the volatiles in the atmosphere and mantle originated from distinct cosmochemical sources. Furthermore, our data are consistent with the origin of Eifel magmatism being a deep mantle plume. The corresponding mantle source has been isolated from the convective mantle since about 4.45 billion years ago, in agreement with models that predict the early isolation of mantle domains. Xenon isotope systematics support a clear distinction between mid-ocean-ridge and continental or oceanic plume sources, with chemical heterogeneities dating back to the Earth's accretion. The deep reservoir now sampled by the Eifel gas had a lower volatile/refractory (iodine/plutonium) composition than the shallower mantle sampled by mid-ocean-ridge volcanism, highlighting the increasing contribution of volatile-rich material during the first tens of millions of years of terrestrial accretion. PMID:27111512

  4. Chondritic xenon in the Earth's mantle.

    PubMed

    Caracausi, Antonio; Avice, Guillaume; Burnard, Peter G; Füri, Evelyn; Marty, Bernard

    2016-05-01

    Noble gas isotopes are powerful tracers of the origins of planetary volatiles, and the accretion and evolution of the Earth. The compositions of magmatic gases provide insights into the evolution of the Earth's mantle and atmosphere. Despite recent analytical progress in the study of planetary materials and mantle-derived gases, the possible dual origin of the planetary gases in the mantle and the atmosphere remains unconstrained. Evidence relating to the relationship between the volatiles within our planet and the potential cosmochemical end-members is scarce. Here we show, using high-precision analysis of magmatic gas from the Eifel volcanic area (in Germany), that the light xenon isotopes identify a chondritic primordial component that differs from the precursor of atmospheric xenon. This is consistent with an asteroidal origin for the volatiles in the Earth's mantle, and indicates that the volatiles in the atmosphere and mantle originated from distinct cosmochemical sources. Furthermore, our data are consistent with the origin of Eifel magmatism being a deep mantle plume. The corresponding mantle source has been isolated from the convective mantle since about 4.45 billion years ago, in agreement with models that predict the early isolation of mantle domains. Xenon isotope systematics support a clear distinction between mid-ocean-ridge and continental or oceanic plume sources, with chemical heterogeneities dating back to the Earth's accretion. The deep reservoir now sampled by the Eifel gas had a lower volatile/refractory (iodine/plutonium) composition than the shallower mantle sampled by mid-ocean-ridge volcanism, highlighting the increasing contribution of volatile-rich material during the first tens of millions of years of terrestrial accretion.

  5. Numerical and laboratory experiments on the dynamics of plume-ridge interaction. Progress report

    SciTech Connect

    Kincaid, C.; Gable, C.W.

    1995-09-01

    Mantle plumes and passive upwelling beneath ridges are the two dominant modes of mantle transport and thermal/chemical fluxing between the Earth`s deep interior and surface. While plumes and ridges independently contribute to crustal accretion, they also interact and the dispersion of plumes within the upper mantle is strongly modulated by mid-ocean ridges. The simplest mode of interaction, with the plume centered on the ridge, has been well documented and modeled. The remaining question is how plumes and ridges interact when the plume is located off-axis; it has been suggested that a pipeline-like flow from the off-axis plume to the ridge axis at the base of the rigid lithosphere may develop. Mid-ocean ridges migrating away from hot mantle plumes can be affected by plume discharges over long times and ridge migration distances. Salient feature of this model is that off-axis plumes communicate with the ridge through a channel resulting from the refraction and dispersion of an axi-symmetric plume conduit along the base of the sloping lithosphere. To test the dynamics of this model, a series of numerical and laboratory dynamic experiments on the problem of a fixed ridge and an off-axis buoyant upwelling were conducted. Results are discussed.

  6. The effects of mantle compressibility on mantle dynamics, magmatism and degassing for super-Earths

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, X.; Zhong, S.

    2010-12-01

    The discovery of extra-solar planets, especially massive terrestrial super-Earths, prompts studies of surface and internal characteristics of super-Earths that may help characterize super-Earths and understand their surface environments and habitability. An important question is related to the formation and evolution of super-Earth’s atmosphere for which mantle degassing resulting from magmatism has important controls. Similar to terrestrial planets in our Solar system, volcanism and magmatism for super-Earths, as a form of heat release from planetary interiors, are likely controlled by the dynamics of mantle convection, and more specifically plate tectonic process and mantle upwelling plumes. However, compared with that for terrestrial planets in our Solar system, the dynamics of mantle convection for super-Earths due to their larger size and mass should be more dissipative and display larger compressibility effects. Using a radius scaling with mass for super-Earths by Valencia et al. [2007], it can be inferred that the mantle dissipation number Di for super-Earths with ~10 Earth’s mass may be 4 times larger than that for the Earth. This may lead to rapid cooling of mantle upwellings and warming of mantle downwellings for super-Earths, thus diminishing mantle buoyancy driving mantle convection. With the large dissipation number, we found that the excess temperature of mantle upwelling plumes may decrease by one order of magnitude as they ascend through the mantle, thus greatly reducing plume-related magmatism and degassing. Another important control on Super-Earth’s magmatism and degassing comes from their increased surface gravitational acceleration that for super-Earths with ~10 Earth’s mass may be three times larger than that at the Earth’s surface. This limits the melting to relatively shallow depths and within small depth ranges, thus posing additional difficulties for plume-related magmatism and degassing. This implies that degassing for super

  7. Dyke intrusion dynamics during the ongoing rifting episode in Afar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jacques, E.; Grandin, R.; Nercessian, A.; Ayele, A.; Keir, D.; Doubre, C.; Socquet, A.; Lemarchand, A.

    2010-12-01

    Dyke intrusion is one of the main processes of crustal accretion occurring along magma-assisted divergent plate boundaries, in particular along Mid-Ocean Ridges. Seismology, through the analysis of earthquake migration coeval to dyke intrusion, is one of the few tools, with geodesy, which allows studying the dynamics of this fundamental process. In Afar (Ethiopia), the major Dabbahu-Manda Hararo rifting episode started in September 2005 with the intrusion a 60 km-long, 5 m-wide mega-dyke. Between June 2006 and May 2010, 13 smaller dykes (~10 km long) were emplaced, giving an outstanding opportunity to perform such studies. A few weeks after the rifting episode commenced, a regional seismological network of broadband stations was installed in Afar (part of a multinational project including UK, US and Ethiopia). In November 2007, in collaboration with the Geophysical Observatory of Addis Ababa University, IPGP (Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris) installed a local telemetered seismological network including 5 short-period stations around the southern half of the Dabbahu-Manda Hararo rift. We focus here on the microseismicity related to five dyke intrusions, which occurred between June 2006 and February 2009. The dykes propagated away from the Walis magma reservoir (WMR, 12.3°N, 40.6°E) at velocities ranging from 0.5km/h to 2km/h. Earthquake migrations during dyke intrusions involved a narrow (less than 5 km wide), seismically-active strip around the dykes, and seem to show the following pattern: first, near the tip of the propagating dyke, probably in the damage zone, small to moderate earthquakes are detected. Subsequent, more energetic earthquakes may have been triggered only after sufficient dyke inflation had occurred. Earthquake sequences, which occurred north of WMR, migrated faster (~2km/h) than those that took place south of WMR (0.5-1km/h), and liberated a greater amount of seismic energy. This is in keeping with results of normal stress modeling

  8. Spectral analysis of dike-induced earthquakes in Afar, Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tepp, Gabrielle; Ebinger, Cynthia J.; Yun, Sang-Ho

    2016-04-01

    Shallow dike intrusions may be accompanied by fault slip above the dikes, a superposition which complicates seismic and geodetic data analyses. The diverse volcano-tectonic and low-frequency local earthquakes accompanying the 2005-2010 large-volume dike intrusions in the Dabbahu-Manda Hararo rift (Afar), some with fault displacements of up to 3 m at the surface, provide an opportunity to examine the relations among the earthquakes, dike intrusions, and surface ruptures. We apply the frequency index (FI) method to characterize the spectra of swarm earthquakes from six of the dikes. These earthquakes often have broad spectra with multiple peaks, making the usual peak frequency classification method unreliable. Our results show a general bimodal character with high FI earthquakes associated with deeper dikes (top > 3 km subsurface) and low FI earthquakes associated with shallow dikes, indicating that shallow dikes result in earthquakes with more low-frequency content and larger-amplitude surface waves. Low FI earthquakes are more common during dike emplacement, suggesting that interactions between the dike and faults may lead to lower FI. Taken together, likely source processes for low FI earthquakes are shallow hypocenters (<3 km) possibly with surface rupture, slow rupture velocities, and interactions with dike fluids. Strong site effects also heavily influence the earthquake spectral content. Additionally, our results suggest a continuum of spectral responses, implying either that impulsive volcano-tectonic earthquakes and the unusual, emergent earthquakes have similar source processes or that simple spectral analyses, such as FI, cannot distinguish different source processes.

  9. Visuality, mobility and the cosmopolitan: inhabiting the world from afar.

    PubMed

    Szerszynski, Bronislaw; Urry, John

    2006-03-01

    In earlier publications based on the research discussed in this article (e.g. Szerszynski and Urry 2002), we argued that an emergent culture of cosmopolitanism, refracted into different forms amongst different social groups, was being nurtured by a widespread 'banal globalism'--a proliferation of global symbols and narratives made available through the media and popular culture. In the current article we draw on this and other empirical research to explore the relationship between visuality, mobility and cosmopolitanism. First we describe the multiple forms of mobility that expand people's awareness of the wider world and their capacity to compare different places. We then chart the changing role that visuality has played in citizenship throughout history, noting that citizenship also involves a transformation of vision, an absenting from particular contexts and interests. We explore one particular version of that transformation--seeing the world from afar, especially in the form of images of the earth seen from space--noting how such images conventionally connote both power and alienation. We then draw on another research project, on place and vision, to argue that the shift to a cosmopolitan relationship with place means that humans increasingly inhabit their world only at a distance. PMID:16506999

  10. Visuality, mobility and the cosmopolitan: inhabiting the world from afar.

    PubMed

    Szerszynski, Bronislaw; Urry, John

    2006-03-01

    In earlier publications based on the research discussed in this article (e.g. Szerszynski and Urry 2002), we argued that an emergent culture of cosmopolitanism, refracted into different forms amongst different social groups, was being nurtured by a widespread 'banal globalism'--a proliferation of global symbols and narratives made available through the media and popular culture. In the current article we draw on this and other empirical research to explore the relationship between visuality, mobility and cosmopolitanism. First we describe the multiple forms of mobility that expand people's awareness of the wider world and their capacity to compare different places. We then chart the changing role that visuality has played in citizenship throughout history, noting that citizenship also involves a transformation of vision, an absenting from particular contexts and interests. We explore one particular version of that transformation--seeing the world from afar, especially in the form of images of the earth seen from space--noting how such images conventionally connote both power and alienation. We then draw on another research project, on place and vision, to argue that the shift to a cosmopolitan relationship with place means that humans increasingly inhabit their world only at a distance.

  11. The volcano seismic crisis in Afar, Ethiopia, starting September 2005

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ayele, Atalay; Jacques, Eric; Kassim, Mohammed; Kidane, Tesfaye; Omar, Ahmed; Tait, Stephen; Nercessian, Alexandre; de Chabalier, Jean-Bernard; King, Geoffrey

    2007-03-01

    We describe the seismo-volcanic crisis that occurred in northern Afar in late 2005, which involved 15 earthquakes greater than M5 and a small explosive silicic eruption from a vent called Da'Ure (at 12.651°N., 40.519°N) close to Dabbahu volcano. The purpose is to pull together the different sources of information into a coherent preliminary interpretation of what happened. The main geophysical data are the locations of the largest earthquakes, and a radar interferogram of unusually high quality that reveals injection of a 60 km long dyke with surface deformation expressed as normal faulting. Subsidence occurred around the Dabbahu volcanic edifice. Most of the dyke is likely to have been basaltic rather than silicic although the eruption was silicic. The volume of the subsidence represents at most 25% of the magma injected into the dyke. The silicic eruption was possibly triggered by interaction of basaltic magma with a shallow silicic reservoir. At about the same time as the eruption and dyking episode, some activity appears also to have taken place at the lava lake at Erta Ale volcano, some 150 km to the north of the eruption site. We evaluate the possibility that there may be some link by calculating stresses associated with opening of the fissure and looking at the activity of the lava lake as revealed by the thermal anomaly seen by weather satellites.

  12. Seismic tomography of the Massif Central - The plume story revisited

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Granet, Michel; Achauer, Ulrich; Barruol, Guilhem

    2010-05-01

    Picking up on the earlier ideas from the 70', that there might be a mantle plume beneath the Massif Central, and following extensive seismological and petrological field work in the French Massif Central in the beginning of the 1990's a small-scale plume beneath the volcanic zone in the central part of the Massif Central, ascending from asthenospheric depths was postulated (Granet et al., 1995 a, b). Including Bouguer gravity and petrophysical modelling arguments this fascinating idea was further established and the name "baby-plume" was created for this kind of phenomena (Sobolev et al., 1997). However, the southeastern end and the depth extension of this plume structure could not be properly established, due to the limited aperture of the seismic arrays used at the time. This triggered a new research program, called TRACK, with the aim of tracking the traces of supposed small-scale continental mantle plume structures by integrated seismological methods. Part of Track was a new seismological field experiment carried out in central-southern part of the Massif Central in 1998/99, with seismic tomography and the study of seismic anisotropy at its core. The joint analysis of both data-sets suggests that the plume deflects to the South-East with depth, in accordance with the flow pattern suggested from SKS-splitting (Barruol and Granet,2002). In this paper we will present the new results (size and depth extent) of the mantle plume beneath the Massif Central and discuss the geodynamic implications.

  13. Mantle cryptology

    SciTech Connect

    Zindler, A.; Jagoutz, E.

    1988-02-01

    A group of anhydrous peridotites from Peridot Mesa, Arizona, document isotopic and trace element heterogeneity in the source mantle. LREE enrichments in two spinel periodotites may have occurred immediately prior to entrainment through interaction with a melt similar to the hose basanite. Detailed characterization of inclusion-free peridotite phases, and washed and unwahsed whole-rock samples, verifies the presence of a ubiquitous secondary contaminant which derives from interaction of the peridotites with local ground waters and host magma. Once the veil of this contamination is removed, coexisting phases are found to be in isotopic equilibrium. Further, a comparison of washed whole rocks and calculated clean-bulk compositions documents the occurrence of an important intragranular fluid-hosted trace element component. For the very incompatible elements (K, Rb, Cs, and Ba, and probably U, Th, Pb and gaseous components as well) this component dominates the nodule budget for two of the three samples studied in detail. Production of basaltic magmas from fertile but incompatible-element-depleted peridotite requires the action of melting processes such as those recently proposed by McKenzie (1985) and O'Hara (1985). The distinctive feature of these models is that they call on effectively larger source volumes for more incompatible elements. In this context, depletions of incompatible trace elements in MORB source mantle will be more extreme than has heretofore been suspected. This would essentially preclude the long-term total isolation of a MORB source mantle above the 670 km seismic discontinuity.

  14. Stress field during early magmatism in the Ali Sabieh Dome, Djibouti, SE Afar rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sue, Christian; Le Gall, Bernard; Daoud, Ahmed Mohamed

    2014-09-01

    The so-called Ali Sabieh range, SE Afar rift, exhibits an atypical antiform structure occurring in the overall extensional tectonic context of the Afar triple junction. We dynamically analyzed the brittle deformation of this specific structural high using four different methods in order to better constrain the tectonic evolution of this key-area in the Afar depression. Paleostress inversions appear highly consistent using the four methods, which a posteriori validates this approach. Computed paleostress fields document two major signals: an early E-W extensional field, and a later transcurrent field, kinematically consistent with the previous one. The Ali Sabieh range may have evolved continuously during Oligo-Miocene times from large-scale extensional to transcurrent tectonism, as the result of probable local stress permutation between σ1 and σ2 stress axes.

  15. Helium and lead isotopes reveal the geochemical geometry of the Samoan plume.

    PubMed

    Jackson, M G; Hart, S R; Konter, J G; Kurz, M D; Blusztajn, J; Farley, K A

    2014-10-16

    Hotspot lavas erupted at ocean islands exhibit tremendous isotopic variability, indicating that there are numerous mantle components hosted in upwelling mantle plumes that generate volcanism at hotspots like Hawaii and Samoa. However, it is not known how the surface expression of the various geochemical components observed in hotspot volcanoes relates to their spatial distribution within the plume. Here we present a relationship between He and Pb isotopes in Samoan lavas that places severe constraints on the distribution of geochemical species within the plume. The Pb-isotopic compositions of the Samoan lavas reveal several distinct geochemical groups, each corresponding to a different geographic lineament of volcanoes. Each group has a signature associated with one of four mantle endmembers with low (3)He/(4)He: EMII (enriched mantle 2), EMI (enriched mantle 1), HIMU (high µ = (238)U/(204)Pb) and DM (depleted mantle). Critically, these four geochemical groups trend towards a common region of Pb-isotopic space with high (3)He/(4)He. This observation is consistent with several low-(3)He/(4)He components in the plume mixing with a common high-(3)He/(4)He component, but not mixing much with each other. The mixing relationships inferred from the new He and Pb isotopic data provide the clearest picture yet of the geochemical geometry of a mantle plume, and are best explained by a high-(3)He/(4)He plume matrix that hosts, and mixes with, several distinct low-(3)He/(4)He components. PMID:25318524

  16. Helium and lead isotopes reveal the geochemical geometry of the Samoan plume.

    PubMed

    Jackson, M G; Hart, S R; Konter, J G; Kurz, M D; Blusztajn, J; Farley, K A

    2014-10-16

    Hotspot lavas erupted at ocean islands exhibit tremendous isotopic variability, indicating that there are numerous mantle components hosted in upwelling mantle plumes that generate volcanism at hotspots like Hawaii and Samoa. However, it is not known how the surface expression of the various geochemical components observed in hotspot volcanoes relates to their spatial distribution within the plume. Here we present a relationship between He and Pb isotopes in Samoan lavas that places severe constraints on the distribution of geochemical species within the plume. The Pb-isotopic compositions of the Samoan lavas reveal several distinct geochemical groups, each corresponding to a different geographic lineament of volcanoes. Each group has a signature associated with one of four mantle endmembers with low (3)He/(4)He: EMII (enriched mantle 2), EMI (enriched mantle 1), HIMU (high µ = (238)U/(204)Pb) and DM (depleted mantle). Critically, these four geochemical groups trend towards a common region of Pb-isotopic space with high (3)He/(4)He. This observation is consistent with several low-(3)He/(4)He components in the plume mixing with a common high-(3)He/(4)He component, but not mixing much with each other. The mixing relationships inferred from the new He and Pb isotopic data provide the clearest picture yet of the geochemical geometry of a mantle plume, and are best explained by a high-(3)He/(4)He plume matrix that hosts, and mixes with, several distinct low-(3)He/(4)He components.

  17. Upper-mantle origin of the Yellowstone hotspot

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Christiansen, R.L.; Foulger, G.R.; Evans, J.R.

    2002-01-01

    Fundamental features of the geology and tectonic setting of the northeast-propagating Yellowstone hotspot are not explained by a simple deep-mantle plume hypothesis and, within that framework, must be attributed to coincidence or be explained by auxiliary hypotheses. These features include the persistence of basaltic magmatism along the hotspot track, the origin of the hotspot during a regional middle Miocene tectonic reorganization, a similar and coeval zone of northwestward magmatic propagation, the occurrence of both zones of magmatic propagation along a first-order tectonic boundary, and control of the hotspot track by preexisting structures. Seismic imaging provides no evidence for, and several contraindications of, a vertically extensive plume-like structure beneath Yellowstone or a broad trailing plume head beneath the eastern Snake River Plain. The high helium isotope ratios observed at Yellowstone and other hotspots are commonly assumed to arise from the lower mantle, but upper-mantle processes can explain the observations. The available evidence thus renders an upper-mantle origin for the Yellowstone system the preferred model; there is no evidence that the system extends deeper than ???200 km, and some evidence that it does not. A model whereby the Yellowstone system reflects feedback between upper-mantle convection and regional lithospheric tectonics is able to explain the observations better than a deep-mantle plume hypothesis.

  18. Afar-wide Crustal Strain Field from Multiple InSAR Tracks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pagli, C.; Wright, T. J.; Wang, H.; Calais, E.; Bennati Rassion, L. S.; Ebinger, C. J.; Lewi, E.

    2010-12-01

    Onset of a rifting episode in the Dabbahu volcanic segment, Afar (Ethiopia), in 2005 renewed interest in crustal deformation studies in the area. As a consequence, an extensive geodetic data set, including InSAR and GPS measurements have been acquired over Afar and hold great potential towards improving our understanding of the extensional processes that operate during the final stages of continental rupture. The current geodetic observational and modelling strategy has focused on detailed, localised studies of dyke intrusions and eruptions mainly in the Dabbahu segment. However, an eruption in the Erta ‘Ale volcanic segment in 2008, and cluster of earthquakes observed in the Tat Ale segment, are testament to activity elsewhere in Afar. Here we make use of the vast geodetic dataset available to obtain strain information over the whole Afar depression. A systematic analysis of all the volcanic segments, including Dabbahu, Manda-Hararo, Alayta, Tat ‘Ale Erta Ale and the Djibouti deformation zone, is undertaken. We use InSAR data from multiple tracks together with available GPS measurements to obtain a velocity field model for Afar. We use over 300 radar images acquired by the Envisat satellite in both descending and ascending orbits, from 12 distinct tracks in image and wide swath modes, spanning the time period from October 2005 to present time. We obtain the line-of-sight deformation rates from each InSAR track using a network approach and then combine the InSAR velocities with the GPS observations, as suggested by Wright and Wang (2010) following the method of England and Molnar (1997). A mesh is constructed over the Afar area and then we solve for the horizontal and vertical velocities on each node. The resultant full 3D Afar-wide velocity field shows where current strains are being accumulated within the various volcanic segments of Afar, the width of the plate boundary deformation zone and possible connections between distinct volcanic segments on a

  19. Recycled dehydrated lithosphere observed in plume-influenced mid-ocean-ridge basalt.

    PubMed

    Dixon, Jacqueline Eaby; Leist, Loretta; Langmuir, Charles; Schilling, Jean-Guy

    2002-11-28

    A substantial uncertainty in the Earth's global geochemical water cycle is the amount of water that enters the deep mantle through the subduction and recycling of hydrated oceanic lithosphere. Here we address the question of recycling of water into the deep mantle by characterizing the volatile contents of different mantle components as sampled by ocean island basalts and mid-ocean-ridge basalts. Although all mantle plume (ocean island) basalts seem to contain more water than mid-ocean-ridge basalts, we demonstrate that basalts associated with mantle plume components containing subducted lithosphere--'enriched-mantle' or 'EM-type' basalts--contain less water than those associated with a common mantle source. We interpret this depletion as indicating that water is extracted from the lithosphere during the subduction process, with greater than 92 per cent efficiency.

  20. ASSESSMENT OF PLUME DIVING

    EPA Science Inventory

    This presentation presents an assessment of plume diving. Observations included: vertical plume delineation at East Patchogue, NY showed BTEX and MTBE plumes sinking on either side of a gravel pit; Lake Druid TCE plume sank beneath unlined drainage ditch; and aquifer recharge/dis...

  1. Reply to Comment on “Garnet-bearing ultramafic rocks from the Dominican Republic: Fossil mantle plume fragments in an ultra high pressure oceanic complex?” by Jan C.M. De Hoog

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gazel, Esteban; Abbott, Richard N.; Draper, Grenville

    2012-03-01

    Two competing hypotheses have been proposed for garnet-bearing ultramafic rocks in the Dominican Republic: (1) The ultrahigh pressure (UHP) - ultrahigh temperature (UHT) hypothesis involves a magmatic protolith of mantle origin, which was then delivered to, and incorporated into deep-subducted oceanic crust (eclogite) at UHP conditions (Abbott et al., 2005, 2006, 2007; Abbott and Draper, 2010; Gazel et al., 2011). (2) The low-pressure (LP) hypothesis involves a plagioclase-bearing, arc-related protolith of crustal origin, which was then subducted to UHP conditions (De Hoog, 2011; Hattori et al., 2010a,b). In both hypotheses, the rocks were uplifted to the surface by an as yet poorly understood mechanism. Here we respond to concerns regarding the integrity of REE analyses, Cpx-Grt REE partitioning, other matters related to the interpretation of the trace element data, and Grt-Spl major-element thermometry. We show that none of the concerns precludes a UHP magmatic origin.

  2. Two views of Hawaiian plume structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hofmann, Albrecht W.; Farnetani, Cinzia G.

    2013-12-01

    Fundamentally contradictory interpretations of the isotopic compositions of Hawaiian basalts persist, even among authors who agree that the Hawaiian hotspot is caused by a deep-mantle plume. One view holds that the regional isotopic pattern of the volcanoes reflects large-scale heterogeneities in the basal thermal boundary layer of the mantle. These are drawn into the rising plume conduit, where they are vertically stretched and ultimately sampled by volcanoes. The alternative view is that the plume resembles a "uniformly heterogeneous plum pudding," with fertile plums of pyroxenite and/or enriched peridotite scattered in a matrix of more refractory peridotite. In a rising plume, the plums melt before the matrix, and the final melt composition is controlled significantly by the bulk melt fraction. Here we show that the uniformly heterogeneous plum pudding model is inconsistent with several geochemical observations: (1) the relative melt fractions inferred from La/Yb ratios in shield-stage basalts of the two parallel (Kea- and Loa-) volcanic chains, (2) the systematic Pb-isotopic differences between the chains, and the absence of such differences between shield and postshield phases, (3) the systematic shift to uniformly depleted Nd-isotopic compositions during rejuvenated volcanism. We extend our previous numerical simulation to the low melt production rates calculated far downstream (200-400 km) from shield volcanism. Part of these melts, feeding rejuvenated volcanism, are formed at pressures of ˜5 GPa in the previously unmelted underside of the plume, from material that originally constituted the uppermost part of the thermal boundary layer at the base of the mantle.

  3. Volatile Organic Compound Emission from Quercus suber, Quercus canariensis, and its hybridisation product Quercus afares

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Welter, S.; Bracho Nuñez, A.; Staudt, M.; Kesselmeier, J.

    2009-04-01

    Oaks represent one of the most important plant genera in the Northern hemisphere and include many intensively VOC emitting species. The major group constitutes the isoprene emitters, but also monoterpene emitters and non-emitters can be found. These variations in the oak species might partly be due to their propensity for inter- and intraspecific hybridisation. This study addresses the foliar VOC production of the former hybridisation product the deciduous Quercus afares and its parents, two very distant species: the evergreen monoterpene emitter Quercus suber and the deciduous isoprene emitter Quercus canariensis. The measurements were performed in Southern France, applying two different methods. Plants were investigated in situ in the field with a portable gas exchange measuring system as well as in the laboratory on cut branches with an adapted enclosure system. Quercus afares was found to be a monoterpene emitting species. However, the monoterpene emission was lower and the composition different to that of Quercus suber. Whereas Quercus suber trees belonged to the pinene type most individuals of Quercus afares were identified to represent a limonene type. Quercus canariensis emitted besides high amounts of isoprene also linalool and (Z)-3-hexenylacetate. Emissions from Quercus suber and Quercus afares were higher in the field measurements than in the laboratory on cut branches whereas Quercus canariensis exhibited lower isoprene emissions from cut branches. The results demonstrate the need of further emission studies on a plant species level.

  4. Ethnobotanical study of plants used in management of livestock health problems by Afar people of Ada’ar District, Afar Regional State, Ethiopia

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The great majority of the Afar people of Ethiopia are pastoralists, highly dependent on livestock and livestock products. Livestock productivity is, however, frequently affected by different diseases. Although many districts in the Region have veterinary clinics, they lack basic facilities. As a result, the Afar people are still dependent on local materials, mainly plants, and traditional knowledge to manage livestock health problems. However, there is a serious threat to such local resources mainly due to recurrent drought and influence of modernization. Hence there is a need for proper documentation and evaluation of the existing ethnoveterinary knowledge in the Region. This study was aimed at documenting and analysing ethnoveterinary knowledge of people in Ada’ar District of the Afar Region associated with the use of plants. Methods The study involved interviewing selected knowledgeable Afar people in Ada’ar District on the use of plants to manage livestock ailments. Fidelity Level (FL) values were calculated for the reported medicinal plant to estimate their healing potentials. Specimens of reported medicinal plant were collected, identified and deposited at the National Herbarium, Addis Ababa University. Results The study revealed 49 medicinal plants as being used by the Afar people of Ada’ar District for the treatment of various livestock ailments, the majority of which (67.3%) were shrubs. Highest number of medicinal plants was used to treat blackleg, contagious caprine pleuropneumonia (CCPP), sudden sickness and pneumonia. Leaf was the most frequently sought plant part, accounting for 47% of the reported plants. All the medicnal plants used in the District were uncultivated ones growing in semi-disturbed and disturbed habitats as remnant plants and weeds. Cissus quadrangularis and Solanum incanum were the plants scoring the highest fidelity level values for their use to treat blackleg and respiratory tract problems, respectively. Conclusion

  5. A young source for the Hawaiian plume.

    PubMed

    Sobolev, Alexander V; Hofmann, Albrecht W; Jochum, Klaus Peter; Kuzmin, Dmitry V; Stoll, Brigitte

    2011-08-25

    Recycling of oceanic crust through subduction, mantle upwelling, and remelting in mantle plumes is a widely accepted mechanism to explain ocean island volcanism. The timescale of this recycling is important to our understanding of mantle circulation rates. Correlations of uranogenic lead isotopes in lavas from ocean islands such as Hawaii or Iceland, when interpreted as model isochrons, have yielded source differentiation ages between 1 and 2.5 billion years (Gyr). However, if such correlations are produced by mixing of unrelated mantle components they will have no direct age significance. Re-Os decay model ages take into account the mixing of sources with different histories, but they depend on the assumed initial Re/Os ratio of the subducted crust, which is poorly constrained because of the high mobility of rhenium during subduction. Here we report the first data on (87)Sr/(86)Sr ratios for 138 melt inclusions in olivine phenocrysts from lavas of Mauna Loa shield volcano, Hawaii, indicating enormous mantle source heterogeneity. We show that highly radiogenic strontium in severely rubidium-depleted melt inclusions matches the isotopic composition of 200-650-Myr-old sea water. We infer that such sea water must have contaminated the Mauna Loa source rock, before subduction, imparting a unique 'time stamp' on this source. Small amounts of seawater-derived strontium in plume sources may be common but can be identified clearly only in ultra-depleted melts originating from generally highly (incompatible-element) depleted source components. The presence of 200-650-Myr-old oceanic crust in the source of Hawaiian lavas implies a timescale of general mantle circulation with an average rate of about 2 (±1) cm yr(-1), much faster than previously thought. PMID:21832996

  6. Modes of rifting in magma-rich settings: Tectono-magmatic evolution of Central Afar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stab, Martin; Bellahsen, Nicolas; Pik, Raphaël.; Quidelleur, Xavier; Ayalew, Dereje; Leroy, Sylvie

    2016-01-01

    Recent research in Afar (northern Ethiopia) has largely focused on the formation of the present-day ocean-continent transition at active segments (e.g., Manda Hararo). However, the Oligo-Miocene history of extension, from the onset of rifting at ~25 Ma to the eruption of the massive Stratoïd flood basalts at ~4 Ma, remains poorly constrained. Here we present new structural data and radiometric dating from Central Afar, obtained along a zone stretching from the undeformed Oligocene Ethiopian plateau to the Manda Hararo and Tat'Ale active volcanic segments. Basaltic and rhyolitic formations were mapped in two key areas corresponding to the proximal and distal parts of a half-rift. We present a balanced composite cross section of Central Afar, reconstructed using our new data and previously published geophysical data on the crustal structure. Our main findings are as follows: (1) Extension during the Mio-Pliocene corresponds to a "wide rift" style of rifting. (2) The lower crust has been underplated/intruded and rethickened during rifting by magmatic injection. (3) Our restoration points to the existence of midcrustal shear zones that have helped to distribute extension in the upper crust and to localize extension at depth in a necking zone. Moreover, we suggest that there is a close relationship between the location of a shear zone and the underplated/intruded material. In magma-rich environments such as Central Afar, breakup should be achieved once the initial continental crust has been completely replaced by the newly, magmatically accreted crust. Consequently, and particularly in Afar, crustal thickness is not necessarily indicative of breakup but instead reflects differences in tectono-magmatic regimes.

  7. Not so hot "hot spots" in the oceanic mantle.

    PubMed

    Bonath, E

    1990-10-01

    Excess volcanism and crustal swelling associated with hot spots are generally attributed to thermal plumes upwelling from the mantle. This concept has been tested in the portion of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge between 34 degrees and 45 degrees (Azores hot spot). Peridotite and basalt data indicate that the upper mantle in the hot spot has undergone a high degree of melting relative to the mantle elsewhere in the North Atlantic. However, application of various geothermometers suggests that the temperature of equilibration of peridotites in the mantle was lower, or at least not higher, in the hot spot than elsewhere. The presence of H(2)O-rich metasomatized mantle domains, inferred from peridotite and basalt data, would lower the melting temperature of the hot spot mantle and thereby reconcile its high degree ofmelting with the lack of a mantle temperature anomaly. Thus, some so-called hot spots might be melting anomalies unrelated to abnormally high mantle temperature or thermal plumes. PMID:17808242

  8. On possible plume-guided seismic waves

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Julian, B.R.; Evans, J.R.

    2010-01-01

    Hypothetical thermal plumes in the Earth's mantle are expected to have low seismic-wave speeds and thus would support the propagation of guided elastic waves analogous to fault-zone guided seismic waves, fiber-optic waves, and acoustic waves in the oceanic SOund Fixing And Ranging channel. Plume-guided waves would be insensitive to geometric complexities in the wave guide, and their dispersion would make them distinctive on seismograms and would provide information about wave-guide structure that would complement seismic tomography. Detecting such waves would constitute strong evidence of a new kind for the existence of plumes. A cylindrical channel embedded in an infinite medium supports two classes of axially symmetric elastic-wave modes, torsional and longitudinal-radial. Torsional modes have rectilinear particle motion tangent to the cylinder surface. Longitudinal-radial modes have elliptical particle motion in planes that include the cylinder axis, with retrograde motion near the axis. The direction of elliptical particle motion reverses with distance from the axis: once for the fundamental mode, twice for the first overtone, and so on. Each mode exists only above its cut-off frequency, where the phase and group speeds equal the shear-wave speed in the infinite medium. At high frequencies, both speeds approach the shear-wave speed in the channel. All modes have minima in their group speeds, which produce Airy phases on seismograms. For shear wave-speed contrasts of a few percent, thought to be realistic for thermal plumes in the Earth, the largest signals are inversely dispersed and have dominant frequencies of about 0.1-1 Hz and durations of 15-30 sec. There are at least two possible sources of observable plume waves: (1) the intersection of mantle plumes with high-amplitude core-phase caustics in the deep mantle; and (2) ScS-like reflection at the core-mantle boundary of downward-propagating guided waves. The widespread recent deployment of broadband

  9. Potential Dynamical Mechanisms Behind Global Mantle Events

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hansen, U.; Loddoch, A.; Stein, C.

    2007-05-01

    By numerical models we have investigated three potential mechanisms behind global mantle events. Plumes, originating in the thermal boundary layers of the mantle convection system can exhibit a significant episodicity, once a strong temperature-dependence of the viscosity of the mantle material is taken into account. An increase of the viscosity with pressure, as sometimes believed to suppress plumes, acts in fact to focus buoyancy into a few strong upwellings, which are potentially able to generate events on global scale. Plumes originating self- consistently from a thermal boundary layer, transport mostly material from their source region, while they entrain only little material during ascent. Compositionally dense material at the Core-mantle boundary has been proposed to explain seismological observed anomalies. The stability of such heterogeneities against entrainment by the overlying mantle-flow is determined by a complex set of properties, rather than by the density difference alone. Model calculations, taking into account a combined dependence of viscosity on temperature, pressure and , as mostly neglected; on composition, demonstrate, that under such conditions the D", can function as an isolated reservoir form some time, that however the destruction of the compositionally distinct layer, shielding the Earth'core can take place rapidly., with a profound effect also on the surface heat flow.. Finally we observe that episodic mobilization events of the surface are dynamically plausible for appropriate rheologies. A combination of temperature- and stress-dependent viscosity leads to an intermittent type of temporal behavior, where periods showing no surface motion (stagnant lid) are interrupted by phases with strong plate motions at the top. It seems at least possible that plate motion is not a continuously operating process.

  10. Existence of complex spatial zonation in the Galápagos plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoernle, Kaj; Werner, Reinhard; Phipps Morgan, Jason; Garbe-Schönberg, Dieter; Bryce, Julie; Mrazek, Johann

    2000-05-01

    Basalts from intraplate or hotspot ocean islands (e.g., the Hawaiian, Galápagos, and Canary Islands) are believed to be formed by mantle plumes, which emanate from mantle boundary layers such as the core-mantle boundary. The long-term chemical structure of mantle plumes, however, remains poorly constrained. Spatial variation in the chemical composition has long been recognized in lavas from the Galápagos Islands: Enriched plume material forms a horseshoe-shaped region with depleted mantle, similar in composition to mid-ocean ridge basalt, in its inner part. The enriched horseshoe-shaped region can be subdivided into three distinct geochemical domains. We show that these same domains occur in the same relative positions with respect to morphology in a geochemical profile across the Galápagos hotspot track off the coast of Costa Rica, indicating that the asymmetrical spatial zonation of the Galápagos hotspot has existed for at least 14 m.y. Combined with published He isotope data, the results of this study imply that plume material can ascend from the lower mantle, possibly from the core-mantle boundary, with little stirring occurring during ascent, and that zonation in hotspot lavas may in some cases reflect spatial heterogeneity within the lower mantle source.

  11. Influence of heating mode on three-dimensional mantle convection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bercovici, D.; Schubert, G.; Glatzmaier, G. A.

    1989-01-01

    Numerical models of three-dimensional thermal convection in highly viscous spherical shells with different combinations of internal and basal heating consistently have upwelling concentrations in the form of cylindrical plumes and downwelling in planar sheets. As the proportion of internal heating increases, the number of upwelling plumes increases, and downwelling sheets become more vigorous and time-dependent. With any amount of basal heating, the entire convective pattern, during its evolution, is anchored to the upwelling plumes. As the proportion of internal heating increases, the heat flow carried by the upwelling plumes remains a large fraction of the basal heat flow. Downwelling sheets carry only a minor fraction (approximately 30 percent) of the basal heat flow (even when the shell is entirely heated from below), but they advect almost all of the internally generated heat. The relatively large number of plumes in the earth's mantle (inferred from hotspots), the possibility that downwelling slabs are vigorous enough to penetrate the lower mantle, and the small fraction of terrestrial surface heat flow carried by plumes all suggest that the mantle is predominantly heated from within.

  12. Paraná Magmatic Province Tristan da Cunha plume system: fixed versus mobile plume, petrogenetic considerations and alternative heat sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ernesto, M.; Marques, L. S.; Piccirillo, E. M.; Molina, E. C.; Ussami, N.; Comin-Chiaramonti, P.; Bellieni, G.

    2002-11-01

    Paleomagnetic reconstructions demonstrate that the Tristan da Cunha (TC) plume, which is usually related to the genesis of the high- and low-Ti flood tholeiites of the Paraná Magmatic Province (PMP), was located ˜1000 km south of the Paraná Province at the time of the magma eruptions. Assuming plume mobility, and considering the low-velocity zone identified in the northern portion of the PMP as the TC 'fossil' plume (˜20° from the present TC position), the plume migrated southward from 133-132 (main volcanic phase) to 80 Ma at a rate of about 40 mm/yr. From 80 Ma to Present the plume remained virtually fixed, leaving a track (Walvis Ridge) compatible with the African plate movement. However, geochemical and Sr-Nd-Pb isotopic data do not support that the tholeiites from Walvis Ridge, Rio Grande Rise and Paraná can result from mixing dominated by the TC plume and mid-ocean ridge basalt components. The similarity among the high-Ti basalts from Rio Grande Rise, part of Walvis Ridge (525A) and the Paraná Province suggests that delaminated subcontinental lithospheric mantle must be considered in their genesis. Regional thermal anomalies in deep mantle mapped by geoid and seismic tomography data offer an alternative non-plume-related heat source for the generation of intracontinental magmatic provinces.

  13. The bent Hawaiian-Emperor hotspot track: inheriting the mantle wind.

    PubMed

    Tarduno, John; Bunge, Hans-Peter; Sleep, Norm; Hansen, Ulrich

    2009-04-01

    Bends in volcanic hotspot lineaments, best represented by the large elbow in the Hawaiian-Emperor chain, were thought to directly record changes in plate motion. Several lines of geophysical inquiry now suggest that a change in the locus of upwelling in the mantle induced by mantle dynamics causes bends in hotspot tracks. Inverse modeling suggests that although deep flow near the core-mantle boundary may have played a role in the Hawaiian-Emperor bend, capture of a plume by a ridge, followed by changes in sub-Pacific mantle flow, can better explain the observations. Thus, hotspot tracks can reveal patterns of past mantle circulation.

  14. Imaging the mantle beneath Iceland using integrated seismological techniques

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Allen, R.M.; Nolet, G.; Morgan, W.J.; Vogfjord, K.; Bergsson, B.H.; Erlendsson, P.; Foulger, G.R.; Jakobsdottir, S.; Julian, B.R.; Pritchard, M.; Ragnarsson, S.; Stefansson, R.

    2002-01-01

    Using a combination of body wave and surface wave data sets to reveal the mantle plume and plume head, this study presents a tomographic image of the mantle structure beneath Iceland to 400 km depth. Data comes primarily from the PASSCAL-HOTSPOT deployment of 30 broadband instruments over a period of 2 years, and is supplemented by data from the SIL and ICEMELT networks. Three sets of relative teleseismic body wave arrival times are generated through cross correlation: S and SKS arrivals at 0.03-0.1 Hz, and P and PKIKP arrivals at 0.03-0.1 and 0.8-2.0 Hz. Prior to inversion the crustal portion of the travel time anomalies is removed using the crustal model ICECRTb. This step has a significant effect on the mantle velocity variations imaged down to a depth of ???250 km. Inversion of relative arrival times only provides information on lateral velocity variations. Surface waves are therefore used to provide absolute velocity information for the uppermost mantle beneath Iceland. The average wave number for the Love wave fundamental mode at 0.020 and 0.024 Hz is measured and used to invert for the average S velocity. Combination of the body wave and surface wave information reveals a predominantly horizontal low-velocity anomaly extending from the Moho down to ???250 km depth, interpreted as a plume head. Below the plume head a near-cylindrical low-velocity anomaly with a radius of ???100 km and peak VP and VS anomalies of -2% and -4%, respectively, extends down to the maximum depth of resolution at 400 km. Within the plume head, in the uppermost mantle above the core of the plume, there is a relatively high velocity with a maximum VP and VS anomaly of +2%. This high-velocity anomaly may be the result of the extreme degree of melt extraction necessary to generate the thick (46 km) crust in central Iceland. Comparison of the plume volumetric flux implied by our images, the crustal generation rate, and the degree of melting suggested by rare earth element inversions

  15. Cenozoic Plume-Slab Interaction Beneath the Pacific Northwest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Obrebski, M. J.; Allen, R. M.; Hung, S.; Pollitz, F. F.

    2009-12-01

    Here we present new images of the structure beneath the Pacific Northwest obtained by inverting both compressional and shear teleseismic body waves and using finite-frequency sensitivity kernels. The models use all available seismic data from the Earthscope Transportable Array, regional seismic networks and two Flexible Array experiments (Mendocino and FACES experiments) deployed on the west coast. By picking P, S and SKS arrivals manually and estimating station-to-station relative arrival times through cross correlation of the waveforms, we select only the highest quality data. East from the Juan de Fuca slab and north from the Mendocino Triple Junction, the mantle structure is dominated by high velocity blocks that are likely to be fragments of the Farallon slab. In the middle of the slab fragments, both our compressional (DNA09-P) and shear (DNA09-S) velocity models show a continuous low velocity anomaly that extends from the Yellowstone Caldera down into the lower mantle. We interpret this feature as a deep-seated mantle plume. The striking contrast between the slab-dominated mantle north from the MTJ and the continuous deep-seated Yellowstone mantle plume suggests the plume disrupted the Farallon slab during its ascent to the surface.

  16. Turbulent Plumes in Nature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Woods, Andrew W.

    2010-01-01

    This review describes a range of natural processes leading to the formation of turbulent buoyant plumes, largely relating to volcanic processes, in which there are localized, intense releases of energy. Phenomena include volcanic eruption columns, bubble plumes in lakes, hydrothermal plumes, and plumes beneath the ice in polar oceans. We assess how the dynamics is affected by heat transfer, particle fallout and recycling, and Earth's rotation, as well as explore some of the mixing of the ambient fluid produced by plumes in a confined geometry.

  17. Three-dimensional spherical models of convection in the earth's mantle

    SciTech Connect

    Bercovici, D.; Schubert, G. ); Glatzmaier, G.A. )

    1989-05-26

    Three-dimensional, spherical models of mantle convection in the earth reveal that upwelling cylindrical plumes and downwelling planar sheets are the primary features of mantle circulation. Thus, subduction zones and descending sheetlike slabs in the mantle are fundamental characteristics of thermal convection in a spherical shell and are not merely the consequences of the rigidity of the slabs, which are cooler than the surrounding mantle. Cylindrical mantle plumes that cause hotspots such as Hawaii are probably the only form of active upwelling and are therefore not just secondary convective currents separate from the large-scale mantle circulation. Active sheetlike upwellings that could be associated with mid-ocean ridges did not develop in the model simulations, a result that is in agreement with evidence suggesting that ridges are passive phenomena resulting from the tearing of surface plates by the pull of descending slabs. 36 refs., 3 figs.

  18. Modeling Europa's dust plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Southworth, B. S.; Kempf, S.; Schmidt, J.

    2015-12-01

    The discovery of Jupiter's moon Europa maintaining a probably sporadic water vapor plume constitutes a huge scientific opportunity for NASA's upcoming mission to this Galilean moon. Measuring properties of material emerging from interior sources offers a unique chance to understand conditions at Europa's subsurface ocean. Exploiting results obtained for the Enceladus plume, we simulate possible Europa plume configurations, analyze particle number density and surface deposition results, and estimate the expected flux of ice grains on a spacecraft. Due to Europa's high escape speed, observing an active plume will require low-altitude flybys, preferably at altitudes of 5-100 km. At higher altitudes a plume may escape detection. Our simulations provide an extensive library documenting the possible structure of Europa dust plumes, which can be quickly refined as more data on Europa dust plumes are collected.

  19. Subducting slabs: Jellyfishes in the Earth's mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loiselet, Christelle; Braun, Jean; Husson, Laurent; Le Carlier de Veslud, Christian; Thieulot, Cedric; Yamato, Philippe; Grujic, Djordje

    2010-08-01

    The constantly improving resolution of geophysical data, seismic tomography and seismicity in particular, shows that the lithosphere does not subduct as a slab of uniform thickness but is rather thinned in the upper mantle and thickened around the transition zone between the upper and lower mantle. This observation has traditionally been interpreted as evidence for the buckling and piling of slabs at the boundary between the upper and lower mantle, where a strong contrast in viscosity may exist and cause resistance to the penetration of slabs into the lower mantle. The distribution and character of seismicity reveal, however, that slabs undergo vertical extension in the upper mantle and compression near the transition zone. In this paper, we demonstrate that during the subduction process, the shape of low viscosity slabs (1 to 100 times more viscous than the surrounding mantle) evolves toward an inverted plume shape that we coin jellyfish. Results of a 3D numerical model show that the leading tip of slabs deform toward a rounded head skirted by lateral tentacles that emerge from the sides of the jellyfish head. The head is linked to the body of the subducting slab by a thin tail. A complete parametric study reveals that subducting slabs may achieve a variety of shapes, in good agreement with the diversity of natural slab shapes evidenced by seismic tomography. Our work also suggests that the slab to mantle viscosity ratio in the Earth is most likely to be lower than 100. However, the sensitivity of slab shapes to upper and lower mantle viscosities and densities, which remain poorly constrained by independent evidence, precludes any systematic deciphering of the observations.

  20. Subducting Slabs: Jellyfishes in the Earth's Mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loiselet, C.; Braun, J.; Husson, L.; Le Carlier de Veslud, C.; Thieulot, C.; Yamato, P.; Grujic, D.

    2010-12-01

    The constantly improving resolution of geophysical data, seismic tomography and seismicity in particular, shows that the lithosphere does not subduct as a slab of uniform thickness but is rather thinned in the upper mantle and thickened around the transition zone between the upper and lower mantle. This observation has traditionally been interpreted as evidence for the buckling and piling of slabs at the boundary between the upper and lower mantle, where a strong contrast in viscosity may exist and cause resistance to the penetration of slabs into the lower mantle. The distribution and character of seismicity reveal, however, that slabs undergo vertical extension in the upper mantle and compression near the transition zone. In this paper, we demonstrate that during the subduction process, the shape of low viscosity slabs (1 to 100 times more viscous than the surrounding mantle) evolves toward an inverted plume shape that we coin jellyfish. Results of a 3D numerical model show that the leading tip of slabs deform toward a rounded head skirted by lateral tentacles that emerge from the sides of the jellyfish head. The head is linked to the body of the subducting slab by a thin tail. A complete parametric study reveals that subducting slabs may achieve a variety of shapes, in good agreement with the diversity of natural slab shapes evidenced by seismic tomography. Our work also suggests that the slab to mantle viscosity ratio in the Earth is most likely to be lower than 100. However, the sensitivity of slab shapes to upper and lower mantle viscosities and densities, which remain poorly constrained by independent evidence, precludes any systematic deciphering of the observations.

  1. Comparing the nature of the western and eastern Azores mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Genske, Felix S.; Beier, Christoph; Stracke, Andreas; Turner, Simon P.; Pearson, Norman J.; Hauff, Folkmar; Schaefer, Bruce F.; Haase, Karsten M.

    2016-01-01

    The Azores islands in the central North-Atlantic originate from a regional melting anomaly, probably created by melting hot, unusually hydrous and geochemically enriched mantle. Here, we present Hf, Pb and Os isotopic data in geochemically well-characterised primitive lavas from the islands Flores and Corvo that are located west of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge (MAR), as well as submarine samples from a subsided island west of Flores and from Deep Sea Drilling Project (DSDP) holes drilled in the western part of the Azores platform and beyond. These are compared to existing data from the Azores islands east of the MAR. The geodynamic origin of the two islands west of the ridge axis and furthest from the inferred plume centre in the central part of the plateau is enigmatic. The new data constrain the source compositions of the Flores and Corvo lavas and show that the western and eastern Azores mantle is isotopically similar, with the exception of an enriched component found exclusively on eastern São Miguel. Trace element ratios involving high field strength elements (HFSE) are distinctly different in the western islands (e.g. twofold higher Nb/Zr) compared to any of the islands east of the MAR. A similar signature is observed in MAR basalts to the south of the Azores platform and inferred to originate from (auto-) metasomatic enrichment of the sub-ridge mantle (Gale et al., 2011, 2013). In a similar fashion, low degree melts from an enriched source component may metasomatise the ambient plume mantle underneath the western Azores islands. Melting such a modified plume mantle can explain the chemical differences between lavas from the western and eastern Azores islands without the need for additional plume components. Recent re-enrichment and intra melting column modification of the upwelling mantle can cause local to regional scale geochemical differences in mantle-derived melts.

  2. Numerical Study on plumes and thermochemical piles in plate-mode convection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stein, C.; Brannaschke, K.; Hansen, U.

    2010-12-01

    Plates and plumes are two important aspects of mantle convection that both have large impact on the structure and dynamics of the Earth's mantle. Tectonic plates shield the interior from effective cooling and the movement of plates and subduction processes affect the dynamics of the interior. Thermal plumes and thermochemical piles forming at the core-mantle boundary play a further role in the mixing and evolution of the mantle. We apply a 2D numerical code to investigate the structure and evolution of the mantle in thermal and thermochemical convection. In our model plates form in a self-consistent manner, so that we can study the effect of plate-mode convection. During periods of subduction, we observe the formation of plume clusters. In cases where we apply a strong pressure-dependent viscosity, we find a few, stable Superplumes. In thermochemical convection dense material is viscously trapped by the flow and piled up beneath plumes. We will here discuss the effect of plates on plumes and piles and compare the signals they leave at the surface and core-mantle boundary.

  3. Water Distribution in the Continental and Oceanic Upper Mantle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Peslier, Anne H.

    2015-01-01

    Nominally anhydrous minerals such as olivine, pyroxene and garnet can accommodate tens to hundreds of ppm H2O in the form of hydrogen bonded to structural oxygen in lattice defects. Although in seemingly small amounts, this water can significantly alter chemical and physical properties of the minerals and rocks. Water in particular can modify their rheological properties and its distribution in the mantle derives from melting and metasomatic processes and lithology repartition (pyroxenite vs peridotite). These effects will be examined here using Fourier transform infrared spectrometry (FTIR) water analyses on minerals from mantle xenoliths from cratons, plume-influenced cratons and oceanic settings. In particular, our results on xenoliths from three different cratons will be compared. Each craton has a different water distribution and only the mantle root of Kaapvaal has evidence for dry olivine at its base. This challenges the link between olivine water content and survival of Archean cratonic mantle, and questions whether xenoliths are representative of the whole cratonic mantle. We will also present our latest data on Hawaii and Tanzanian craton xenoliths which both suggest the intriguing result that mantle lithosphere is not enriched in water when it interacts with melts from deep mantle upwellings (plumes).

  4. Mapping the evolving strain field during continental breakup from crustal anisotropy in the Afar Depression

    PubMed Central

    Keir, Derek; Belachew, M.; Ebinger, C.J.; Kendall, J.-M.; Hammond, J.O.S.; Stuart, G.W.; Ayele, A.; Rowland, J.V.

    2011-01-01

    Rifting of the continents leading to plate rupture occurs by a combination of mechanical deformation and magma intrusion, yet the spatial and temporal scales over which these alternate mechanisms localize extensional strain remain controversial. Here we quantify anisotropy of the upper crust across the volcanically active Afar Triple Junction using shear-wave splitting from local earthquakes to evaluate the distribution and orientation of strain in a region of continental breakup. The pattern of S-wave splitting in Afar is best explained by anisotropy from deformation-related structures, with the dramatic change in splitting parameters into the rift axis from the increased density of dyke-induced faulting combined with a contribution from oriented melt pockets near volcanic centres. The lack of rift-perpendicular anisotropy in the lithosphere, and corroborating geoscientific evidence of extension dominated by dyking, provide strong evidence that magma intrusion achieves the majority of plate opening in this zone of incipient plate rupture. PMID:21505441

  5. Bookshelf faulting and horizontal block rotations between overlapping rifts in southern Afar

    SciTech Connect

    Tapponnier, P.; Armijo, R.; Manighetti, I.; Courtillot, V. )

    1990-01-01

    Lateral slip on initially rift-parallel normal faults may be a particularly efficient mechanism to accommodate strain between overlapping oceanic rifts. It occurs in southern Afar, where clockwise block rotations result from distributed dextral shear between the overlapping Ghoubbet Asal-Manda Inakir and Manda Hararo-Abhe Bad rifts. Faulting observed during the 1969, Serdo earthquakes and on SPOT images is consistent with the shear being taken up by left-lateral slip on steep NW-SE striking faults, which formed as normal faults before extensional strain became localized in the two rifts. This bookshelf faulting accounts quantitatively for the 14.5{degree} {plus minus}7.5{degree} rotation documented by paleomagnetism in the 1.8 {plus minus}0.4 Ma old Afar stratoid basalts, given the 17.5 {plus minus}5 mm/yr rate of separation between Arabia and Somalia.

  6. Geology and palaeontology of the Late Miocene Middle Awash valley, Afar rift, Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    WoldeGabriel, G; Haile-Selassie, Y; Renne, P R; Hart, W K; Ambrose, S H; Asfaw, B; Heiken, G; White, T

    2001-07-12

    The Middle Awash study area of Ethiopia's Afar rift has yielded abundant vertebrate fossils (approximately 10,000), including several hominid taxa. The study area contains a long sedimentary record spanning Late Miocene (5.3-11.2 Myr ago) to Holocene times. Exposed in a unique tectonic and volcanic transition zone between the main Ethiopian rift (MER) and the Afar rift, sediments along the western Afar rift margin in the Middle Awash provide a unique window on the Late Miocene of Ethiopia. These deposits have now yielded the earliest hominids, described in an accompanying paper and dated here to between 5.54 and 5.77 Myr. These geological and palaeobiological data from the Middle Awash provide fresh perspectives on hominid origins and early evolution. Here we show that these earliest hominids derive from relatively wet and wooded environments that were modulated by tectonic, volcanic, climatic and geomorphic processes. A similar wooded habitat also has been suggested for the 6.0 Myr hominoid fossils recently recovered from Lukeino, Kenya. These findings require fundamental reassessment of models that invoke a significant role for global climatic change and/or savannah habitat in the origin of hominids. PMID:11449271

  7. Surface wave tomography across Afar, Ethiopia: Crustal structure at a rift triple-junction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guidarelli, M.; Stuart, G.; Hammond, J. O. S.; Kendall, J. M.; Ayele, A.; Belachew, M.

    2011-12-01

    The Afar Depression in northeast Africa contains the rift triple-junction between the Nubia, Arabia and Somalia plates. We analyze Rayleigh wave group velocity from 250 regional earthquakes recorded by 40 broadband stations to study the crustal structure across Afar and adjacent plateau regions in northern Ethiopia. The dispersion velocities are inverted to obtain surface wave tomographic maps for periods between 5 and 25 seconds, sensitive to approximately the top 30 km of the lithosphere. The tomographic maps show a significant low dispersion velocity anomaly (>20%) within the upper crust, below the site of recent dyke intrusions (2005-present) in the Dabbahu and Manda-Hararo magmatic segments. Similar low velocity regions are imaged where magma intrusion in the Afar crust has been inferred over the last decade from seismicity or volcanic eruptions. We invert two group velocity curves to compare the S-wave velocity structure of the crust within an active magmatic segment with that of adjacent areas; the active region has a low velocity zone (Vs ˜ 3.2 km/s), between about 6-12 km, which we infer to be due to the presence of partial melt within the lower crust.

  8. Chondritic xenon in the Earth’s mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Caracausi, Antonio; Avice, Guillaume; Burnard, Peter G.; Füri, Evelyn; Marty, Bernard

    2016-05-01

    Noble gas isotopes are powerful tracers of the origins of planetary volatiles, and the accretion and evolution of the Earth. The compositions of magmatic gases provide insights into the evolution of the Earth’s mantle and atmosphere. Despite recent analytical progress in the study of planetary materials and mantle-derived gases, the possible dual origin of the planetary gases in the mantle and the atmosphere remains unconstrained. Evidence relating to the relationship between the volatiles within our planet and the potential cosmochemical end-members is scarce. Here we show, using high-precision analysis of magmatic gas from the Eifel volcanic area (in Germany), that the light xenon isotopes identify a chondritic primordial component that differs from the precursor of atmospheric xenon. This is consistent with an asteroidal origin for the volatiles in the Earth’s mantle, and indicates that the volatiles in the atmosphere and mantle originated from distinct cosmochemical sources. Furthermore, our data are consistent with the origin of Eifel magmatism being a deep mantle plume. The corresponding mantle source has been isolated from the convective mantle since about 4.45 billion years ago, in agreement with models that predict the early isolation of mantle domains. Xenon isotope systematics support a clear distinction between mid-ocean-ridge and continental or oceanic plume sources, with chemical heterogeneities dating back to the Earth’s accretion. The deep reservoir now sampled by the Eifel gas had a lower volatile/refractory (iodine/plutonium) composition than the shallower mantle sampled by mid-ocean-ridge volcanism, highlighting the increasing contribution of volatile-rich material during the first tens of millions of years of terrestrial accretion.

  9. Three-dimensional laboratory modeling of the Tonga trench and Samoan plume interaction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Druken, K. A.; Kincaid, C. R.; Pockalny, R. A.; Griffiths, R. W.; Hart, S. R.

    2009-12-01

    Plume processes occurring near ridge centers (e.g. Iceland) or mid-plate (e.g. Hawaii) have been well studied; however, the behavior of a plume near a subducting plate is still poorly understood and may in fact differ from the typical expected plume surfacing patterns. We investigate how three-dimensional subduction-driven flow relates to the deformation and dispersal of nearby upwelling plume material and the associated geochemical spatial patterns, with site-specific comparisons to the Tonga trench and Samoan plume system. Eighteen plume-trench laboratory experiments were conducted with varied combinations of subduction motions (down-dip, trench rollback, slab steepening and back-arc extension) and plume parameters (position and temperature.) A phenolic plate and glucose syrup, with a temperature dependent viscosity, are used to model the slab and upper mantle, respectively. Hydraulic pistons control longitudinal, translational and steepening motions of the slab as a simplified kinematic approach to mimic dynamic experiments. Results show that the subduction-induced flow dominates the upwelling strength of the plume, causing a significant portion of the plume head to subduct before reaching the melt zone. The remaining material is entrained around the slab edge into the mantle wedge by the trench rollback-induced flow. The proportion of subducted verses entrained material is predominantly dependent on plume location (relative to the trench) and thermal strength, with additional effects from back-arc extension and plate steepening.

  10. Numerical Mantle Convection Modeling: The Effect of Plates on the Surface Topography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stein, C.; Fahl, A.; Hansen, U.

    2008-12-01

    Until today it is unclear in which way mantle processes find their expressions in surface signatures such as heat flow, gravity and topography. On Earth, plates may shield the surface from far below processes. Further, the situation is complicated by the interaction of internal dynamics and the motion of surface plates. In order to better understand this relationship and the possible imprints of internal dynamics on the surface, we have employed a numerical model of mantle convection with a complex rheology. The equations of mantle convection have been solved using the multigrid method in a finite volume formulation. In particular, we applied a viscosity structure which strongly depends on temperature, pressure and stress, thus allowing for surface plates to form naturally and as an integral part of the convective system. The experiments were carried out in a Cartesian box with stress-free, impermeable boundaries, reflecting sidewalls and isothermal temperatures at the top (T = 0) and at the bottom (T = 1). In this configuration we have performed several numerical experiments to understand the surface expression of rising mantle plumes. While it is common understanding that plumes elevate the surface topography, our results show that the existence of a mantle plume can also correlate with a depression in the topography rather than always leading to an elevation. One reason for this phenomenon is that the overriding plate sinks deeper into the mantle at the plume location and overcompensates the effect of the buoyancy-driven plume.

  11. He and Sr isotopes in the Lau Basin mantle: depleted and primitive mantle components

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poreda, R. J.; Craig, H.

    1992-11-01

    Helium isotope ratios in Lau Basin back-arc basalts range from 7 to 22 times the atmospheric value ( R A), i.e. from ratios typical of MORB (Depleted Mantle) helium (R/R A = 8 ± 1) to ratios similar to 'high- 3He' hotspots as observed in the Hawaiian, Icelandic, and nearby Samoan plume ( R/R A = 24 ). Along the Central Lau Basin spreading axis and its northward extension in the region around Niuafo'ou Volcano, 3He/ 4He ratios have typical MORB values (range = 7.5-8.6), but on Rochambeau Bank, the southern flank of a large seamount, ratios up to 22 R A occur. These high 3He/ 4He ratios are extrema of linear arrays (11-22 R A) of He vs. Sr, Nd and Pb isotope ratios, between a Depleted Mantle (MORB) end-member and a Primitive Helium Mantle component (PHEM). PHEM is the Enriched Mantle end-member for the 'depleted' array formed with the DM component, and at the same time the Depleted end-member for the 'enriched' array formed with 'EM' the EM2-type end-member for Masefau Bay, Samoan basalts, as these two binary arrays intersect at its composition. Sr and Nd isotopic arrays vs. each other and vs. 3He are consistent with these binary 'mirror arrays' for Lau and Masefau basalts. The 3He data show unequivocally that deep-mantle plume material is present at Rochambeau Bank, and to some extent in the leaky transform/spreading axis along Peggy Ridge. We suppose that the Samoan plume component regards itself as an 'off-ridge' hotspot relative to the nearby Lau spreading axis, and that some of its material is channeled toward Peggy Ridge in a manner similar to the channeling we observe at the Galapagos and Pascua (Easter Island) hotspots.

  12. Geophysical inferences of thermal-chemical structures in the lower mantle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yuen, D. A.; Cadek, O.; Chopelas, A.; Matyska, C.

    1993-01-01

    Lateral variations of the temperature field in the lower mantle have been reconstructed using new results in mineral physics and seismic tomographic data. We show that, with the application of high-pressure experimental values of thermal expansivity and of sound velocities, the slow seismic anomalies in the lower mantle under the Pacific and Africa can be converted into realistic-looking plume structures with large dimensions of 0(1000 km). The outer fringes of the plumes have an excess temperature of around 400 K. In the core of the plumes are found tonguelike structures with extremely high thermal anomalies. These values can exceed 1200 K and are too high to be explained on the basis of thermal anomalies alone. We suggest that these major plumes in the deep mantle may be driven by both thermal and chemical buoyancies or that enhanced conductive heat-transfer may be important there.

  13. An olivine-free mantle source of Hawaiian shield basalts.

    PubMed

    Sobolev, Alexander V; Hofmann, Albrecht W; Sobolev, Stephan V; Nikogosian, Igor K

    2005-03-31

    More than 50 per cent of the Earth's upper mantle consists of olivine and it is generally thought that mantle-derived melts are generated in equilibrium with this mineral. Here, however, we show that the unusually high nickel and silicon contents of most parental Hawaiian magmas are inconsistent with a deep olivine-bearing source, because this mineral together with pyroxene buffers both nickel and silicon at lower levels. This can be resolved if the olivine of the mantle peridotite is consumed by reaction with melts derived from recycled oceanic crust, to form a secondary pyroxenitic source. Our modelling shows that more than half of Hawaiian magmas formed during the past 1 Myr came from this source. In addition, we estimate that the proportion of recycled (oceanic) crust varies from 30 per cent near the plume centre to insignificant levels at the plume edge. These results are also consistent with volcano volumes, magma volume flux and seismological observations. PMID:15800614

  14. An olivine-free mantle source of Hawaiian shield basalts.

    PubMed

    Sobolev, Alexander V; Hofmann, Albrecht W; Sobolev, Stephan V; Nikogosian, Igor K

    2005-03-31

    More than 50 per cent of the Earth's upper mantle consists of olivine and it is generally thought that mantle-derived melts are generated in equilibrium with this mineral. Here, however, we show that the unusually high nickel and silicon contents of most parental Hawaiian magmas are inconsistent with a deep olivine-bearing source, because this mineral together with pyroxene buffers both nickel and silicon at lower levels. This can be resolved if the olivine of the mantle peridotite is consumed by reaction with melts derived from recycled oceanic crust, to form a secondary pyroxenitic source. Our modelling shows that more than half of Hawaiian magmas formed during the past 1 Myr came from this source. In addition, we estimate that the proportion of recycled (oceanic) crust varies from 30 per cent near the plume centre to insignificant levels at the plume edge. These results are also consistent with volcano volumes, magma volume flux and seismological observations.

  15. New geodetic measurements in central Afar constraining the Arabia-Somalia-Nubia triple junction kinematics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doubre, C.; Deprez, A.; Masson, F.; Socquet, A.; Lewi, E.; Grandin, R.; Calais, E.; Wright, T. J.; Bendick, R. O.; Pagli, C.; Peltzer, G.; de Chabalier, J. B.; Ibrahim Ahmed, S.

    2014-12-01

    The Afar Depression is an extraordinary submerged laboratory where the crustal mechanisms involved in the active rifting process can be studied. But the crustal movements at the regional scale are complicated by being the locus of the meeting of three divergent plate boundaries: the oceanic spreading ridges of the Red Sea and the Aden Ridge and the intra-continental East-African Rift (EAR). We present here the first GPS measurements conducted in a new network in Central Afar, complementing existing networks in Eritrea, around the Manda-Harraro 2005-2010 active segment, in the Northern part of the EAR and in Djibouti. Even if InSAR data were appropriate for mapping the deformation field, the results are difficult to interpret for analyzing the regional kinematics because of the atmospheric conditions, the lack of complete data catalogue, the acquisition configuration and the small velocity variations. Therefore, our measurements in the new sites are crucial to obtain an accurate velocity field over the whole depression, and focus specifically on the spatial organization of the deformation to characterize the tripe junction. These first results show that a small part of the motion of the Somalia plate with respect to the Nubia plate or the Arabia plate (2-3 mm/yr) occurs south of the Tadjura Gulf and East of the Adda-do segment in Southern Afar. The complex kinematic pattern involves a clockwise rotation of this Southeastern part of the Afar rift and can be related to the significant seismic activity regularly recorded in the region of Jigjiga (northern Somalia-Ethiopia border). The western continuation of the Aden Ridge into Afar extends West of the Asal rift segment and does not reach the young active segment of Manda-Inakir (MI). A slow gradient of velocity is observed across the Dobi Graben and across the large systems of faults between Lake Abhe and the MI rift segment. A striking change of the velocity direction occurs in the region of Assaïta, west of Lake

  16. Block rotation and continental extension in Afar: A comparison to oceanic microplate systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Acton, Gary D.; Stein, Seth; Engeln, Joseph F.

    1991-06-01

    The reorganization of oceanic spreading centers separating major plates often appears to occur by a process in which discrete microplates form and evolve by rift propagation. To see whether such microplate behavior has implications for continental rifting, we investigate the application of a microplate model to the Afar region at the Nubia-Somalia-Arabia triple junction. Studies of marine magnetic anomalies, volcanic ages, bathymetry, and seismicity suggest that the westward propagating Gulf of Aden spreading center has propagated into eastern Afar within the past 2 m.y., causing rifting and extension within the continent. We derive constraints on the extension history from the geometry and timing of rift formation and from paleomagnetic data indicating that Pliocene to Pleistocene age rocks have undergone a clockwise rotation of ˜11°. We suggest that the history of rifting, the rotation, and several other features of the regional geology can be described by combining features of an oceanic microplate model and the concept of rift localization previously proposed for Afar. In this scenario, motion occurring on several rifts within an extensional zone preceding the propagating spreading center is gradually transferred to a single rift. While motion is transferred, the overlap region between the growing and dying rifts acts as one or more microplates or blocks that rotate relative to the surrounding major plates. The rifting history and rotations in eastern Afar are thus related to the rift propagation and localization that occurs as the plate boundary evolves. Provided the constraints we use are appropriate, our model better describes the regional kinematics than alternative block models including one based on "bookshelf" faulting. If the tectonics of Afar are typical for continental breakup, they have interesting implications for the geometry of passive margins. In particular, asymmetric rifted margins can be produced if the final location of the rift axis is not

  17. Modeling Europa's Dust Plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Southworth, B.; Kempf, S.; Schmidt, J.

    2015-12-01

    The discovery of Europa maintaining a probably sporadic water vapor plume constitutes a huge scientific opportunity for NASA's upcoming mission to this Galilean moon. Measuring the properties of material emerging from interior sources offers a unique chance to understand conditions at Europa's subsurface ocean. Exploiting results obtained for the Enceladus plume, we adjust the ejection model by Schmidt et al. [2008] to the conditions at Europa. In this way, we estimate properties of a possible, yet unobserved dust component of the Europa plume. For a size-dependent speed distribution of emerging ice particles we use the model from Kempf et al. [2010] for grain dynamics, modified to run simulations of plumes on Europa. Specifically, we model emission from the two plume locations determined from observations by Roth et al. [2014] and also from other locations chosen at the closest approach of low-altitude flybys investigated in the Europa Clipper study. This allows us to estimate expected fluxes of ice grains on the spacecraft. We then explore the parameter space of Europa dust plumes with regard to particle speed distribution parameters, plume location, and spacecraft flyby elevation. Each parameter set results in a 3-dimensional particle density structure through which we simulate flybys, and a map of particle fallback ('snowfall') on the surface of Europa. Due to the moon's high escape speed, a Europa plume will eject few to no particles that can escape its gravity, which has several further consequences: (i) For given ejection velocity a Europa plume will have a smaller scale height, with a higher particle number densities than the plume on Enceladus, (ii) plume particles will not feed the diffuse Galilean dust ring, (iii) the snowfall pattern on the surface will be more localized about the plume location, and will not induce a global m = 2 pattern as seen on Enceladus, and (iv) safely observing an active plume will require low altitude flybys, preferably at 50

  18. Vertically deflected mantle flow at the eastern edge of the African Large Low Shear Velocity Province

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ford, H. A.; Long, M. D.; He, X.; Lynner, C.

    2014-12-01

    Despite the abundantly clear evidence for the existence of two Large Low Shear Velocity Provinces (LLSVPs) in the lower mantle, the origin, composition, and dynamics are still not well understood, nor is the relationship of the LLSVPs to the greater mantle. Observations of seismic anisotropy are often used to better understand flow in the mantle, but their utility is limited in the mostly isotropic lower mantle. An exception to this is in the lowermost mantle (D") where observations of seismic anisotropy are numerous; however, the interpretation of such measurements in terms of dynamic processes remains challenging. Here we use observations of seismic anisotropy at the eastern edge of the African LLSVP beneath the Afar hotspot to 1) test the consistency of different mechanisms for D" anisotropy with observations, and 2) constrain the geometry of mantle flow at an LLSVP edge. Our observational data set consists of measurements of differential S-ScS and discrepant SKS-SKKS splitting, totaling 22 SKS, SKKS and ScS phases, corrected for upper mantle anisotropy. By utilizing different raypath combinations, we are able to sample the edge structure of the African LLSVP from five distinct raypath orientations, an improvement over previous work. Through forward modeling using mineral physics constraints, we find that our splitting observations are best fit by a model of crystallographically aligned post-perovskite, with the [100] axis oriented either vertically, or highly oblique to the horizontal plane. Such an alignment suggests that mantle flow at the eastern edge of the African LLSVP has an upward component, consistent with either the vertical deflection of material at the LLSVP or with sheet-like upwellings. Placing our preferred flow scenario(s) in context with other recent work, we propose that the edge of the African LLSVP acts as a barrier to mantle flow, ultimately deflecting flow upwards along the margins.

  19. Small-scale convection induces temporal and spatial variability in Hawaiian plume volcanism (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ballmer, M. D.; Ito, G.; van Hunen, J.; Tackley, P. J.

    2010-12-01

    Our understanding of age-progressive intraplate volcanism has yet built on “classical” plume theory. The simplest description of such a classical plume involves a stationary columnar upwelling that rises through the entire mantle to spawn hotspot volcanism. Plume-lithosphere interaction is classically specified as a steady-state process forming a “pancake” of hot mantle that spreads symmetrically beneath the overriding lithosphere, and a parabolic curtain that surrounds it. This paradigm successfully predicts many first-order observations at Hawaii, which is the archetype for plume-fed volcanism. However, it fails to give an explanation for (1) strong variations of volcanic flux at the Hawaiian hotspot over geological time, (2) rejuvenated stage and flexural arch volcanism, both occuring well away from the hotspot, and (3) geochemical non-symmetry of hotspot volcanism as expressed in Loa and Kea volcanic trends. We find that the effects of small-scale sublithospheric convection (SSC) break the symmetry and steady-state behavior of plume-lithosphere interaction explaining parts of these enigmatic observations (1-3) altogether. We simulate mantle flow and melting in fully thermochemical, three-dimensional numerical models with strongly temperature-dependent rheology. In all our models, SSC develops in the ambient mantle beneath seafloor of age ≥70 Myrs (i.e., before the arrival of the Hawaiian plume), and more vigorously within the plume pancake. Plume pancake SSC is predicted to give rise to secondary upwellings that account for rejuvenated stage, and flexural arch volcanism. Ambient mantle SSC shapes sublithospheric topography, and therefore controls the main hotspot volcanic flux. This interplay of SSC and the plume is a time-dependent process therefore entailing volcanic flux variations over geological time. We assume a mantle source that consists of a matrix of depleted peridotite with fine-scale streaks of hydrous peridotite and pyroxenite. For such a

  20. Experiments on metal-silicate plumes and core formation.

    PubMed

    Olson, Peter; Weeraratne, Dayanthie

    2008-11-28

    Short-lived isotope systematics, mantle siderophile abundances and the power requirements of the geodynamo favour an early and high-temperature core-formation process, in which metals concentrate and partially equilibrate with silicates in a deep magma ocean before descending to the core. We report results of laboratory experiments on liquid metal dynamics in a two-layer stratified viscous fluid, using sucrose solutions to represent the magma ocean and the crystalline, more primitive mantle and liquid gallium to represent the core-forming metals. Single gallium drop experiments and experiments on Rayleigh-Taylor instabilities with gallium layers and gallium mixtures produce metal diapirs that entrain the less viscous upper layer fluid and produce trailing plume conduits in the high-viscosity lower layer. Calculations indicate that viscous dissipation in metal-silicate plumes in the early Earth would result in a large initial core superheat. Our experiments suggest that metal-silicate mantle plumes facilitate high-pressure metal-silicate interaction and may later evolve into buoyant thermal plumes, connecting core formation to ancient hotspot activity on the Earth and possibly on other terrestrial planets. PMID:18826918

  1. Experiments on metal-silicate plumes and core formation.

    PubMed

    Olson, Peter; Weeraratne, Dayanthie

    2008-11-28

    Short-lived isotope systematics, mantle siderophile abundances and the power requirements of the geodynamo favour an early and high-temperature core-formation process, in which metals concentrate and partially equilibrate with silicates in a deep magma ocean before descending to the core. We report results of laboratory experiments on liquid metal dynamics in a two-layer stratified viscous fluid, using sucrose solutions to represent the magma ocean and the crystalline, more primitive mantle and liquid gallium to represent the core-forming metals. Single gallium drop experiments and experiments on Rayleigh-Taylor instabilities with gallium layers and gallium mixtures produce metal diapirs that entrain the less viscous upper layer fluid and produce trailing plume conduits in the high-viscosity lower layer. Calculations indicate that viscous dissipation in metal-silicate plumes in the early Earth would result in a large initial core superheat. Our experiments suggest that metal-silicate mantle plumes facilitate high-pressure metal-silicate interaction and may later evolve into buoyant thermal plumes, connecting core formation to ancient hotspot activity on the Earth and possibly on other terrestrial planets.

  2. On the possibility of crater formation associated with an ascending plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Medvedev, A. B.

    2008-04-01

    A hypothetical possibility of a qualitative explanation of large crater formation on the surfaces of the Moon and Mercury is discussed in terms of the concept of thermal mantle plumes. Prerequisites to this hypothesis are revealed under the assumption that the model equation of state of SiO2 exhibiting an anomaly (a negative coefficient of thermal expansion) in the range of states approximately corresponding to average conditions typical of mantles of minor planets is applicable, in a first approximation, to mantle material. The anomaly reduces the buoyancy of hot plume material in such a way that, under conditions of moderate overheating, only relatively high columns comparable in size to the mantle are capable of ascending from the mantle bottom to the crust; allows cold peripheral material surrounding the hot column to be pushed away; causes compaction of the vertical zone of the contact of the column with the surrounding medium at the first stages after the plume ascent; and leads to compaction of the deep mantle due to the long-term heat supply. Such phenomena can lead to vertical craterlike deformations of the crust in areas of ascending large plumes whose presence can be supposed at early stages of the existence of minor planets. Significant implications of such an anomaly for geophysical processes can also be postulated.

  3. Os-He Isotope Systematics of Iceland Picrites: Evidence for a Deep Origin of the Iceland Plume

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brandon, Alan D.; Graham, David W.; Waight, Tod; Gautason, Bjarni

    2007-01-01

    Recent work on the origin of the Iceland hotspot suggests that it may result from upwelling upper mantle material rather than a deep plume. To constrain the depths of origins of Iceland mantle sources, Os and He isotope systematics were obtained on a suite picrites that span the compositional range observed within the neovolcanic zones.

  4. Evidence for melt channelization in Galapagos plume-ridge interaction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mittal, T.; Richards, M. A.

    2015-12-01

    Many present-day hot spots are located within ~ 1000 km of a mid-ocean ridge, either currently or in the geologic past, leading to frequent interaction between these two magmatic regimes. The consequent plume-ridge interactions provide a unique opportunity to test models for asthenosphere-lithosphere dynamics, with the plume acting as a tracer fluid in the problem, and excess magmatism reflecting otherwise unsampled sub-surface phenomena. Galapagos is an off-ridge hotspot with the mantle plume located ~150-250 km south of the plate boundary. Plume-ridge interaction in Galapagos is expressed by the formation of volcanic lineaments of islands and seamounts - e.g., the Wolf-Darwin lineament (WDL) - providing a direct probe of the plume-ridge interaction process, especially in regards to geochemical data. Although several models have been proposed to explain plume-ridge interaction in Galapagos, none adequately explain the observed characteristics, especially the WDL. In particular, predicted lithospheric fault orientations and melt density considerations appear at odds with observations, suggesting that lithospheric extension is not the primary process for formation of these islands. Other off-ridge hotspots interacting with nearby spreading ridges, such as Reunion and Louisville, also exhibit volcanic lineaments linking the plume and the ridge. Thus these lineament-type features are a common outcome of plume-ridge interaction that are indicative of the underlying physics. We propose that the lineaments are surface expressions of narrow sub-lithospheric melt channels focused towards the spreading ridge. These channels should form naturally due to the reactive infiltration instability in a two-phase flow of magma and solid mantle as demonstrated in two-phase flow simulations (e.g., Katz & Weatherley 2012). For Galapagos, we show that melt channels can persist thermodynamically over sufficient length-scales to link the plume and nearby ridge segments. We also show that

  5. Stealth Plumes on Io

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, T. V.; Matson, Dennis L.; Blaney, Diana L.; Veeder, Glenn J.; Davies, Ashley

    1995-01-01

    We suggest that Io's eruptive activity may include a class of previously undetected SO2 geysers. The thermodynamic models for the eruptive plumes discovered by Voyager 'involve low to moderate entropy SO2 eruptions. The resulting plumes are a mixture of solid and gas which emerge from the vent and follow essentially ballistic trajectories. We show that intrusion of silicate magma into buried SO2 deposits can create the required conditions for high entropy eruptions which proceed entirely in the vapor phase. These purely gaseous plumes would have been invisible to Voyager's instruments. Hence, we call them "stealth" plumes. Such eruptions could explain the "patchy" SO2 atmosphere inferred from recent UV and micro-wave spectral observations. The magma intrusion rate required to support the required gas production for these plumes is a negligible fraction of estimated global magma intrusion rates.

  6. Deep mantle cycling of oceanic crust: evidence from diamonds and their mineral inclusions.

    PubMed

    Walter, M J; Kohn, S C; Araujo, D; Bulanova, G P; Smith, C B; Gaillou, E; Wang, J; Steele, A; Shirey, S B

    2011-10-01

    A primary consequence of plate tectonics is that basaltic oceanic crust subducts with lithospheric slabs into the mantle. Seismological studies extend this process to the lower mantle, and geochemical observations indicate return of oceanic crust to the upper mantle in plumes. There has been no direct petrologic evidence, however, of the return of subducted oceanic crustal components from the lower mantle. We analyzed superdeep diamonds from Juina-5 kimberlite, Brazil, which host inclusions with compositions comprising the entire phase assemblage expected to crystallize from basalt under lower-mantle conditions. The inclusion mineralogies require exhumation from the lower to upper mantle. Because the diamond hosts have carbon isotope signatures consistent with surface-derived carbon, we conclude that the deep carbon cycle extends into the lower mantle.

  7. Deep mantle cycling of oceanic crust: evidence from diamonds and their mineral inclusions.

    PubMed

    Walter, M J; Kohn, S C; Araujo, D; Bulanova, G P; Smith, C B; Gaillou, E; Wang, J; Steele, A; Shirey, S B

    2011-10-01

    A primary consequence of plate tectonics is that basaltic oceanic crust subducts with lithospheric slabs into the mantle. Seismological studies extend this process to the lower mantle, and geochemical observations indicate return of oceanic crust to the upper mantle in plumes. There has been no direct petrologic evidence, however, of the return of subducted oceanic crustal components from the lower mantle. We analyzed superdeep diamonds from Juina-5 kimberlite, Brazil, which host inclusions with compositions comprising the entire phase assemblage expected to crystallize from basalt under lower-mantle conditions. The inclusion mineralogies require exhumation from the lower to upper mantle. Because the diamond hosts have carbon isotope signatures consistent with surface-derived carbon, we conclude that the deep carbon cycle extends into the lower mantle. PMID:21921159

  8. Recycled crust in the Galápagos Plume source at 70 Ma: Implications for plume evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trela, Jarek; Vidito, Christopher; Gazel, Esteban; Herzberg, Claude; Class, Cornelia; Whalen, William; Jicha, Brian; Bizimis, Michael; Alvarado, Guillermo E.

    2015-09-01

    Galápagos plume-related lavas in the accreted terranes of the Caribbean and along the west coast of Costa Rica and Panama provide evidence on the evolution of the Galápagos mantle plume, specifically its mantle temperature, size and composition of heterogeneities, and dynamics. Here we provide new 40Ar/39Ar ages, major and trace element data, Sr-Nd-Pb isotopic compositions, and high-precision olivine analyses for samples from the Quepos terrane (Costa Rica) to closely examine the transitional phase of the Galápagos Plume from Large Igneous Province (LIP) to ocean island basalt (OIB) forming stages. The new ages indicate that the record of Quepos volcanism began at 70 Ma and persisted for 10 Ma. Petrological evidence suggests that the maximum mantle potential temperature (Tp) of the plume changed from ∼1650° to ∼1550 °C between 90-70 Ma. This change correlates with a dominant pyroxenite component in the Galapagos source as indicated by high Ni and Fe/Mn and low Ca olivines relative to those that crystallized in normal peridotite derived melts. The decrease in Tp also correlates with an increase in high-field strength element enrichments, e.g., Nb/Nb*, of the erupted lavas. Radiogenic isotope ratios (Nd-Pb) suggest that the Quepos terrane samples have intermediate (Central Domain) radiogenic signatures. The Galápagos plume at 70 Ma represents elevated pyroxenite melt productivity relative to peridotite in a cooling lithologically heterogeneous mantle.

  9. Laminar plume formation by high pressure CO2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nadal, Francois; Meunier, Patrice; Pouligny, Bernard; Laurichesse, Eric

    2012-11-01

    Convection flows have often revealed the presence of plumes, especially in the earth's mantle where the Schmidt number is large. There has thus been a large number of studies on plumes created by a point source. However, there are very few results on plumes generated by an extended source. Here, we present experimental, numerical and theoretical results on the flow created by high pressure CO2 dissolved into distilled water. The thin layer of dense fluid created at the surface destabilizes through the Rayleigh-Taylor instability and leads to a laminar and parallel stationary plume. The plume width and amplitude are measured by Particle Image Velocimetry for various aspect ratios, Bond and Rayleigh numbers. They are in good agreement with the numerical result if a no-slip boundary condition is assumed at the free surface. Finally, the theory for a plume generated by a point source is adapted for an extended source, which leads to different scaling exponents (with a logarithmic dependence), in excellent agreement with the experimental and numerical results. This study thus provides a simple and accurate description of axisymmetric plumes generated by an extended source.

  10. Did mantle plume magmatism help trigger the Great Oxidation Event?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ciborowski, T. Jake. R.; Kerr, Andrew C.

    2016-03-01

    The Great Oxidation Event (GOE) represents the first sustained appearance of free oxygen in Earth's atmosphere. This fundamental event in Earth's history has been dated to approximately 2450 million years ago (Ma), that is, hundreds of millions of years after the appearance of photosynthetic cyanobacteria in the fossil record. A variety of mechanisms have been suggested to explain this time lag between the onset of photosynthesis and atmospheric oxygenation, including orogenesis, changes in the areal extent and distribution of continental shelves, the secular release of hydrogen to space, and methanogenic bacterial stress. Recently, it has been proposed that subaerial volcanism during the early Proterozoic could have provided a large pulse of sulphate to the ancient oceans, the reduction of which liberated the oxygen to drive the GOE. Here we show that the Matachewan Large Igneous Province (LIP), which is partially preserved in Scandinavia and North America, is both exactly coincident with the onset of the GOE, and of sufficient magnitude to be the source of this sulphate release. We therefore propose that the volcanism associated with the emplacement of the Matachewan LIP was a principal driver of the oxygenation of our planet.

  11. Lithology and temperature: How key mantle variables control rift volcanism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shorttle, O.; Hoggard, M.; Matthews, S.; Maclennan, J.

    2015-12-01

    Continental rifting is often associated with extensive magmatic activity, emplacing millions of cubic kilometres of basalt and triggering environmental change. The lasting geological record of this volcanic catastrophism are the large igneous provinces found at the margins of many continents and abrupt extinctions in the fossil record, most strikingly that found at the Permo-Triassic boundary. Rather than being considered purely a passive plate tectonic phenomenon, these episodes are frequently explained by the involvement of mantle plumes, upwellings of mantle rock made buoyant by their high temperatures. However, there has been debate over the relative role of the mantle's temperature and composition in generating the large volumes of magma involved in rift and intra-plate volcanism, and even when the mantle is inferred to be hot, this has been variously attributed to mantle plumes or continental insulation effects. To help resolve these uncertainties we have combined geochemical, geophysical and modelling results in a two stage approach: Firstly, we have investigated how mantle composition and temperature contribute to melting beneath Iceland, the present day manifestation of the mantle plume implicated in the 54Ma break up of the North Atlantic. By considering both the igneous crustal production on Iceland and the chemistry of its basalts we have been able to place stringent constraints on the viable temperature and lithology of the Icelandic mantle. Although a >100°C excess temperature is required to generate Iceland's thick igneous crust, geochemistry also indicates that pyroxenite comprises 10% of its source. Therefore, the dynamics of rifting on Iceland are modulated both by thermal and compositional mantle anomalies. Secondly, we have performed a global assessment of the mantle's post break-up thermal history to determine the amplitude and longevity of continental insulation in driving excess volcanism. Using seismically constrained igneous crustal

  12. Mantle heterogeneity beneath the southern Mid-Atlantic Ridge: trace element evidence for contamination of ambient asthenospheric mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    le Roux, P. J.; le Roex, A. P.; Schilling, J.-G.; Shimizu, N.; Perkins, W. W.; Pearce, N. J. G.

    2002-10-01

    We report new trace element data for an extensive suite of quench basalt glasses dredged from the southern Mid-Atlantic Ridge (MAR) between 40°S and 52.5°S. Ratios between highly incompatible trace elements are strongly correlated and indicate a systematic distribution of incompatible element enriched mid-ocean ridge basalt (MORB) (E-type: Zr/Nb=5.9-19, Y/Nb=0.9-8.4, (La/Sm) n=1.0-2.9) and incompatible element depleted MORB (N-type: Zr/Nb=30-69, Y/Nb=11-29, (La/Sm) n=0.48-0.79) along this section of the southern MAR. A notable feature of N-type MORB from the region is the higher than usual Ba/Nb (4-9), La/Nb (1.2-2.4) and primitive mantle normalised K/Nb ratios (>1). Ba/Nb ratios in E-type MORB samples from 47.5 to 49°S are especially elevated (>10). The occurrence and geographic distribution of E-type MORB along this section of the southern MAR can be correlated with the ridge-centred Shona and off-axis Discovery mantle plumes. In conjunction with published isotope data for a subset of the same sample suite [Douglass et al., J. Geophys. Res. 104 (1999) 2941], a model is developed whereby prior to the breakup of Gondwana and the opening of the South Atlantic Ocean, the underlying asthenospheric mantle was locally contaminated by fluids/melts rising from the major Mesozoic subduction zone along the south-southwest boundary of Gondwana, leaving a subduction zone geochemical imprint (elevated (K/Nb) n and 87Sr/ 86Sr ratios, decreased 143Nd/ 144Nd ratios). Subsequent impingement of three major mantle plume heads (Tristan/Gough, Discovery, Shona) resulted in heating and thermal erosion of the lowermost subcontinental lithosphere and dispersal into the convecting asthenospheric mantle. With the opening of the ocean basin, continued plume upwelling led to plume-ridge interactions and mixing between geochemically enriched mantle derived from the Shona and Discovery mantle plumes, material derived from delamination of the subcontinental lithosphere, and mildly subduction

  13. Three-dimensional instabilities of mantle convection with multiple phase transitions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Honda, S.; Yuen, D. A.; Balachandar, S.; Reuteler, D.

    1993-01-01

    The effects of multiple phase transitions on mantle convection are investigated by numerical simulations that are based on three-dimensional models. These simulations show that cold sheets of mantle material collide at junctions, merge, and form a strong downflow that is stopped temporarily by the transition zone. The accumulated cold material gives rise to a strong gravitational instability that causes the cold mass to sink rapidly into the lower mantle. This process promotes a massive exchange between the lower and upper mantles and triggers a global instability in the adjacent plume system. This mechanism may be cyclic in nature and may be linked to the generation of superplumes.

  14. The August 2002 earthquake sequence in north Afar: Insights into the neotectonics of the Danakil microplate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ayele, Atalay; Stuart, Graham; Bastow, Ian; Keir, Derek

    2007-06-01

    In August 2002, there was high seismic activity in Afar concentrated at the plateau margin of the northern Ethiopian rift east of Mekele, near the western part of the Danakil microplate. The spatial and temporal distributions of this seismic activity over four weeks indicate the NNW propagation of the Gulf of Aden rift across the Afar Depression towards the western Ethiopian plateau. Fault plane solutions for six larger earthquakes from the August 2002 sequence are estimated from moment tensor inversion of local broadband waveform data. The results show only normal faulting on NNW trending and NE dipping faults, which agree with tectonics of the area and distribution of aftershocks. No strike-slip component is observed in any of our fault plane solutions or those of other workers including Harvard CMT solutions in the region. Such motion would be indicative of oblique-slip deformation between the Nubian plate and the Danakil microplate consistent with counter-clockwise rotation of the microplate. Hypocentral depths of well-constrained events are 5-7 km, which is the approximate elastic plate thickness in the Main Ethiopian rift, possibly indicating the depth to the brittle-ductile transition zone in this part of the Afar Depression. The shallowness of the depth estimates agree with the macroseismic reports available from a wide area in northern Ethiopia. Potential future shallow crustal deformation may cause significant loss of human life and damage to property in the densely populated highland region around Mekele unless measures are taken in improving building standards. The b-value for this sequence is estimated to be 0.66 using a least squares fit, while it is 0.67 ± 0.16 from a maximum-likelihood approach. This estimated b-value is low or the frequency of occurrence of relatively larger magnitude events is high indicating that it is a highly stressed region as evidenced by the recent increase of the seismicity in the area.

  15. Characteristics of the Bab al Mandab-Northern Afar area of the southern Red Sea

    SciTech Connect

    Allen, R.B. ); Sikander, A.H. ); Abouzakhm, A.G.

    1991-08-01

    The southern Red Sea and adjacent Afar area represent an enigmatic portion of the Red Sea/Gulf of Aden basin system. Although the topographic rift shoulders of the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden can be traced through this elbow, and appear to suggest that a similar width for the zone of extension is maintained across the region, the character of the floor of the rift zone changes. The distinctive character of the southern Red Sea-Afar area results in part from a topographically elevated region, possibly associated with the Red Sea-Gulf of Aden-East African rift triple junction. In addition, however, seismic data from offshore Ethiopia suggests that the distinctive character is due a complex pattern of rifting. The central axial trough of the Red Sea decreases in depth to the south toward the strait of Bab al Mandab, suggesting that rifting is dying out southward. Farther to the west at the same latitude, a major but narrow half-graben can be seen on seismic in the Gulf of Zula, bounded to the east by a large west-dipping normal fault. This structure continues south into the Danakil Depression of the Afar area. Between these two en echelon rift trends, the Danakil Alps form a long-lived high. Seismic data from the southern Red Sea of Ethiopia show southward thinning and pinch-out of the Miocene syn-rift evaporite sequence onto the northern Danakil block. Thus, it appears that the Danakil block has largely escaped Red Sea extension and subsidence. Instead, it forms a large unextended terrain located between overlapping en echelon rift trends, and may represent an accommodation zone structure associated with offset in the rift axis of the southern Red Sea.

  16. Primordial metallic melt in the deep mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Zhou; Dorfman, Susannah M.; Labidi, Jabrane; Zhang, Shuai; Li, Mingming; Manga, Michael; Stixrude, Lars; McDonough, William F.; Williams, Quentin

    2016-04-01

    Seismic tomography models reveal two large low shear velocity provinces (LLSVPs) that identify large-scale variations in temperature and composition in the deep mantle. Other characteristics include elevated density, elevated bulk sound speed, and sharp boundaries. We show that properties of LLSVPs can be explained by the presence of small quantities (0.3-3%) of suspended, dense Fe-Ni-S liquid. Trapping of metallic liquid is demonstrated to be likely during the crystallization of a dense basal magma ocean, and retention of such melts is consistent with currently available experimental constraints. Calculated seismic velocities and densities of lower mantle material containing low-abundance metallic liquids match the observed LLSVP properties. Small quantities of metallic liquids trapped at depth provide a natural explanation for primitive noble gas signatures in plume-related magmas. Our model hence provides a mechanism for generating large-scale chemical heterogeneities in Earth's early history and makes clear predictions for future tests of our hypothesis.

  17. A rapid burst in hotspot motion through the interaction of tectonics and deep mantle flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hassan, Rakib; Müller, R. Dietmar; Gurnis, Michael; Williams, Simon E.; Flament, Nicolas

    2016-05-01

    Volcanic hotspot tracks featuring linear progressions in the age of volcanism are typical surface expressions of plate tectonic movement on top of narrow plumes of hot material within Earth’s mantle. Seismic imaging reveals that these plumes can be of deep origin—probably rooted on thermochemical structures in the lower mantle. Although palaeomagnetic and radiometric age data suggest that mantle flow can advect plume conduits laterally, the flow dynamics underlying the formation of the sharp bend occurring only in the Hawaiian-Emperor hotspot track in the Pacific Ocean remains enigmatic. Here we present palaeogeographically constrained numerical models of thermochemical convection and demonstrate that flow in the deep lower mantle under the north Pacific was anomalously vigorous between 100 million years ago and 50 million years ago as a consequence of long-lasting subduction systems, unlike those in the south Pacific. These models show a sharp bend in the Hawaiian-Emperor hotspot track arising from the interplay of plume tilt and the lateral advection of plume sources. The different trajectories of the Hawaiian and Louisville hotspot tracks arise from asymmetric deformation of thermochemical structures under the Pacific between 100 million years ago and 50 million years ago. This asymmetric deformation waned just before the Hawaiian-Emperor bend developed, owing to flow in the deepest lower mantle associated with slab descent in the north and south Pacific.

  18. A rapid burst in hotspot motion through the interaction of tectonics and deep mantle flow.

    PubMed

    Hassan, Rakib; Müller, R Dietmar; Gurnis, Michael; Williams, Simon E; Flament, Nicolas

    2016-05-11

    Volcanic hotspot tracks featuring linear progressions in the age of volcanism are typical surface expressions of plate tectonic movement on top of narrow plumes of hot material within Earth's mantle. Seismic imaging reveals that these plumes can be of deep origin--probably rooted on thermochemical structures in the lower mantle. Although palaeomagnetic and radiometric age data suggest that mantle flow can advect plume conduits laterally, the flow dynamics underlying the formation of the sharp bend occurring only in the Hawaiian-Emperor hotspot track in the Pacific Ocean remains enigmatic. Here we present palaeogeographically constrained numerical models of thermochemical convection and demonstrate that flow in the deep lower mantle under the north Pacific was anomalously vigorous between 100 million years ago and 50 million years ago as a consequence of long-lasting subduction systems, unlike those in the south Pacific. These models show a sharp bend in the Hawaiian-Emperor hotspot track arising from the interplay of plume tilt and the lateral advection of plume sources. The different trajectories of the Hawaiian and Louisville hotspot tracks arise from asymmetric deformation of thermochemical structures under the Pacific between 100 million years ago and 50 million years ago. This asymmetric deformation waned just before the Hawaiian-Emperor bend developed, owing to flow in the deepest lower mantle associated with slab descent in the north and south Pacific.

  19. A rapid burst in hotspot motion through the interaction of tectonics and deep mantle flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hassan, Rakib; Müller, R. Dietmar; Gurnis, Michael; Williams, Simon E.; Flament, Nicolas

    2016-05-01

    Volcanic hotspot tracks featuring linear progressions in the age of volcanism are typical surface expressions of plate tectonic movement on top of narrow plumes of hot material within Earth’s mantle. Seismic imaging reveals that these plumes can be of deep origin—probably rooted on thermochemical structures in the lower mantle. Although palaeomagnetic and radiometric age data suggest that mantle flow can advect plume conduits laterally, the flow dynamics underlying the formation of the sharp bend occurring only in the Hawaiian–Emperor hotspot track in the Pacific Ocean remains enigmatic. Here we present palaeogeographically constrained numerical models of thermochemical convection and demonstrate that flow in the deep lower mantle under the north Pacific was anomalously vigorous between 100 million years ago and 50 million years ago as a consequence of long-lasting subduction systems, unlike those in the south Pacific. These models show a sharp bend in the Hawaiian–Emperor hotspot track arising from the interplay of plume tilt and the lateral advection of plume sources. The different trajectories of the Hawaiian and Louisville hotspot tracks arise from asymmetric deformation of thermochemical structures under the Pacific between 100 million years ago and 50 million years ago. This asymmetric deformation waned just before the Hawaiian–Emperor bend developed, owing to flow in the deepest lower mantle associated with slab descent in the north and south Pacific.

  20. A rapid burst in hotspot motion through the interaction of tectonics and deep mantle flow.

    PubMed

    Hassan, Rakib; Müller, R Dietmar; Gurnis, Michael; Williams, Simon E; Flament, Nicolas

    2016-05-12

    Volcanic hotspot tracks featuring linear progressions in the age of volcanism are typical surface expressions of plate tectonic movement on top of narrow plumes of hot material within Earth's mantle. Seismic imaging reveals that these plumes can be of deep origin--probably rooted on thermochemical structures in the lower mantle. Although palaeomagnetic and radiometric age data suggest that mantle flow can advect plume conduits laterally, the flow dynamics underlying the formation of the sharp bend occurring only in the Hawaiian-Emperor hotspot track in the Pacific Ocean remains enigmatic. Here we present palaeogeographically constrained numerical models of thermochemical convection and demonstrate that flow in the deep lower mantle under the north Pacific was anomalously vigorous between 100 million years ago and 50 million years ago as a consequence of long-lasting subduction systems, unlike those in the south Pacific. These models show a sharp bend in the Hawaiian-Emperor hotspot track arising from the interplay of plume tilt and the lateral advection of plume sources. The different trajectories of the Hawaiian and Louisville hotspot tracks arise from asymmetric deformation of thermochemical structures under the Pacific between 100 million years ago and 50 million years ago. This asymmetric deformation waned just before the Hawaiian-Emperor bend developed, owing to flow in the deepest lower mantle associated with slab descent in the north and south Pacific. PMID:27172048

  1. Helium-3 from the mantle - Primordial signal or cosmic dust?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anderson, Don L.

    1993-01-01

    Helium-3 in hotspot magmas has been used as unambiguous evidence for the existence of a primordial, undegassed reservoir deep in the Earth's mantle. However, a large amount of helium-3 is delivered to the Earth's surface by interplanetary dust particles (IDPs). Recycling of deep-sea sediments containing these particles to the mantle, and eventual incorporation in magma, can explain the high helium-3/helium-4 ratios of hotspot magmas. Basalts with high helium-3/helium-4 ratios may represent degassing of helium introduced by ancient (probably 1.5 to 2.0 billion years old) pelagic sediments rather than degassing of primordial lower mantle material brought to the surface in plumes. Influx of IDPs can also explain the neon and siderophile compositions of mantle samples.

  2. Study of the deformation in Central Afar using InSAR NSBAS chain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deprez, A.; Doubre, C.; Grandin, R.; Saad, I.; Masson, F.; Socquet, A.

    2013-12-01

    The Afar Depression (East Africa) connects all three continental plates of Arabia, Somalia and Nubia plates. For over 20 Ma, the divergent motion of these plates has led to the formation of large normal faults building tall scarps between the high plateaus and the depression, and the development of large basins and an incipient seafloor spreading along a series of active volcano-tectonic rift segments within the depression. The space-time evolution of the active surface deformation over the whole Afar region remains uncertain. Previous tectonic and geodetic studies confirm that a large part of the current deformation is concentrated along these segments. However, the amount of extension accommodated by other non-volcanic basins and normal faulting remains unclear, despite significant micro-seismic activity. Due to the active volcanism, large transient displacements related to dyking sequence, notably in the Manda Hararo rift (2005-2010), increase the difficulty to characterize the deformation field over simple time and space scales. In this study, we attempt to obtain a complete inventory of the deformation within the whole Afar Depression and to understand the associated phenomena, which occurred in this singular tectonic environment. We study in particular, the behavior of the structures activated during the post-dyking stage of the rift segments. For this purpose, we conduct a careful processing of a large set of SAR ENVISAT images over the 2004-2010 period, we also use previous InSAR results and GPS data from permanent stations and from campaigns conducted in 1999, 2003, 2010, 2012 within a GPS network particularly dense along the Asal-Ghoubbet segment. In one hand, in the western part of Afar, the far-field response of the 2005-2010 dyke sequence appears to be the dominant surface motion on the mean velocity field. In an other hand, more eastward across the Asal-Ghoubbet rift, strong gradients of deformation are observed. The time series analysis of both In

  3. Volcano-tectonic evolution of the Western Afar margin: new geochronological and structural data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stab, Martin; Pik, Raphael; Bellahsen, Nicolas; Leroy, Sylvie; Ayalew, Dereje; Denèle, Yoann

    2013-04-01

    The rift system in NW-Afar (Ethiopia) is part of the Nubia-Somalia-Arabia triple junction located above the Afar hot spot active mainly since Oligocene times. It represents a unique natural laboratory for field study of superficial and deep lithospheric structure and process interactions during the transition between rifting and oceanic spreading in magma-rich setting. Most past field studies in Afar focused on the recognition and correlation of Afar's volcano-stratigraphic record and led to models of margin development that stress out the major trends of volcanic structures and give accordingly the following chronological "big picture". (1) 2km-thick flood basalt province emplaced at ca. 30 Ma due to hot spot activity over Jurassic to Permian sedimentary rocks and basement. (2) Rifting started around 25-20 Ma with half graben and great escarpment formation along with localization of volcanic activity in highly faulted narrower basins followed by lithospheric flexure. (3) The deformation migrated toward the rift centre with the emplacement around 8-5 Ma of bi-modal volcanics later faulted. (4) A second pulse of flood-basalt, the so-called Stratoid series, started at 4 Ma, until 1 Ma. In this contribution, we present new structural field data and lavas (U-Th/He) datings along a cross-section from the marginal graben to the Manda-Hararo active rift axis. In the newly explored Sullu Adu ranges, which were previously thought to be made of 8 Ma Dahla Basalts Fm., we mapped normal faults arrays affecting a complex magmatic series. We dated highly tilted 30 Ma pre-rift basic and silicic volcanic rocks that are unconformably overlain by syn-rift volcanics (25 to 8 Ma). This pattern is in some places either masked by unconformable thick stratoid cover or strongly eroded by dense river drainage. However, it is preserved enough to suggest a lower-than-expected extension ratio and/or the presence of major normal faults controlling seaward-dipping reflectors (SDR) emplacement

  4. Evolution of Northeast Atlantic Magmatic Continental Margins from an Ethiopian-Afar Perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    England, R. W.; Cornwell, D. G.; Ramsden, A. M.

    2014-12-01

    One of the major problems interpreting the evolution of magmatic continental margins is that the structure which should record the pre-magmatic evolution of the rift and which potentially influences the character of the rifting process is partially or completely obscured by thick basalt lava flows and sills. A limited number of deep reflection seismic profiles acquired with tuned seismic sources have penetrated the basalts and provide an image of the pre-magmatic structure, otherwise the principle data are lower resolution wide-angle/refraction profiles and potential field models which have greater uncertainties associated with them. In order to sidestep the imaging constraints we have examined the Ethiopian - Afar rift system to try to understand the rifting process. The Main Ethiopian rift contains an embryonic magmatic passive margin dominated by faulting at the margins of the rift and en-echelon magmatic zones at the centre. Further north toward Afar the rift becomes in-filled with extensive lava flows fed from fissure systems in the widening rift zone. This rift system provides, along its length, a series of 'snapshots' into the possible tectonic evolution of a magmatic continental margin. Deep seismic profiles crossing the NE Atlantic margins reveal ocean dipping reflector sequences (ODRS) overlying extended crust and lower crustal sill complexes of intruded igneous rock, which extend back beneath the continental margin. The ODRS frequently occur in fault bounded rift structures along the margins. We suggest, by analogy to the observations that can be made in the Ethiopia-Afar rift that these fault bounded basins largely form at the embryonic rift stage and are then partially or completely filled with lavas fed from fissures which are now observed as the ODRS. Also in the seismic profiles we identify volcanic constructs on the ODRS which we interpret as the equivalent of the present day fissure eruptions seen in Afar. The ocean ward dip on the ODRS is

  5. 2D and 3D Numerical Experiments Assessing the Necessary Conditions for a Plume-fed Asthenosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, C.; Phipps Morgan, J.; Hasenclever, J.

    2008-12-01

    In past years we have presented observation evidence which suggests to us that in Earth's mantle there exists a buoyant asthenosphere layer fed by upwelling in mantle plumes, and consumed by accretion and transformation into overlying lithosphere by ridge upwelling and melt-extraction (which creates a ~60km-thick layer of compositional lithosphere at mid-ocean ridges), by plate cooling (which accretes a further ~40km of asthenosphere after 100 Ma of near-surface cooling), and by dragdown by subducting slabs (which drags a further ~20km sheet of buoyant asthenosphere on either side of the subducting slab). This scenario has been recently reviewed in Yamamoto et al (GSA Vol. 431). We believe that the reason this mode of mantle convection has not yet been seen in numerical models of mantle convection is due to the inability of current models to model the correct upwelling rates in focused lower-viscosity plumes (i.e. that, due to numerical resolution problems they currently underpredict plume upwelling) and to correctly model the magnitude of downdragging of a more buoyant but lower viscosity asthenosphere layer by subducting slabs (which they currently overpredict, cf. Phipps Morgan et al., Terra Nova, 2007). Here we present results from a suite of 2D and 3D calculations that include the effects of ridge accretion, plate cooling and well-resolved asthenosphere dragdown by subducting slabs. In the 2D experiments we do not let mantle plumes spontaneously form at the hot base of the mantle. Instead we extract mantle at a prescribed rate from a single region near the bottom of the mantle (the base of the 'plume stem') and inject this hot material into the uppermost mantle using a local dilation element 'source'. The point is to bypass an incorrect 2D treatment of plume upwelling (plumes should be pipes that only slightly disrupt surrounding flow instead of sheets that break 2D mantle flow), in order to explore what upwelling flux is needed to form a persistent plume

  6. Prometheus: Io's wandering plume.

    PubMed

    Kieffer, S W; Lopes-Gautier, R; McEwen, A; Smythe, W; Keszthelyi, L; Carlson, R

    2000-05-19

    Unlike any volcanic behavior ever observed on Earth, the plume from Prometheus on Io has wandered 75 to 95 kilometers west over the last 20 years since it was first discovered by Voyager and more recently observed by Galileo. Despite the source motion, the geometric and optical properties of the plume have remained constant. We propose that this can be explained by vaporization of a sulfur dioxide and/or sulfur "snowfield" over which a lava flow is moving. Eruption of a boundary-layer slurry through a rootless conduit with sonic conditions at the intake of the melted snow can account for the constancy of plume properties. PMID:10817989

  7. Hotspot activity and plume pulses recorded by geometry of spreading axes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abelson, Meir; Agnon, Amotz

    2001-06-01

    Anomalous plan view geometry (planform) of spreading axes is shown to be a faithful indicator of hotspot influence, possibly capable of detecting pulses of hotspot discharge. A planform anomaly (PA) occurs when the orientation of second-order ridge segments is prominently oblique to the spreading direction. PA is found in the vicinity of hotspots at shallow ridges (<1.5 km), suggesting hotspot influence. In places the PA and shallow bathymetry are accompanied by geochemical anomalies, corroborating hotspot influence. This linkage is best expressed in the western Gulf of Aden, where the extent of the PA from the Afar hotspot coincides with the extent of La/Sm and Sr isotopic anomalies. Using fracture mechanics we predict PA to reflect overpressurized melt that dominates the stresses in the crust, consistent with hotspot regime. Accordingly, the temporal variations of the planform previously inferred from magnetic anomalies around the Kolbeinsey Ridge (KR), north of Iceland, record episodes of interaction with the hotspot and major pulses of the plume. This suggestion is corroborated by temporal correlation of episodes showing PA north of Iceland with plume pulses previously inferred by the V-shaped ridges around the Reykjanes Ridge (RR), south of Iceland. In contrast to the RR, the temporal correlation suggests simultaneous incidence of the plume pulses at Iceland and KR, hundreds of kilometers to the north. A deep northward branch of the Iceland plume active during pulse-periods may explain these observations.

  8. 4 Gy of Mantle Recycling: Evolution of Species in the Mantle Zoo

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hart, S. R.

    2008-12-01

    (2007) for Samoan lavas that show the undeniable presence of an ancient sediment component. The parentage of EM1 and HIMU are less certain. While typically ascribed to recycled sediment and ocean crust, respectively, adequate models for their derivation and evolution still invoke believable but ad hoc chemical processing during subduction. Recycled metasomatized lower oceanic mantle lithosphere is an alternative model for EM1, with perhaps a similar believability quotient. FOZO was discovered hiding in the mantle zoo post-Hofmann and White 1982, and is perhaps the least understood of the mantle critters. Numerous models and variants exist for FOZO; many involve recycled components and most require ancient processing ages. FOZO unequivocally is not 'primordial' mantle. My current world view: DMM - depleted upper mantle, perhaps containing small meter-scale mafic lithologies. FOZO - very ancient ubiquitous meso- scale (50-100 km) lower mantle association of recycled lithospheric peridotites and highly refractory mafic crust. HIMU - similar, but containing mafic crust that is less processed during subduction. EM1 - old metasomatized lower oceanic lithosphere. EM2 - peridotite with recycled continental crustal components. In any of these species, the mafic or metasomatic components need not exist as separate lithologies, but may be subsumed into a single peridotitic lithology. HIMU, EM1 and EM2 exist in their most pure-bred forms in the lower mantle piles demarcated seismically as the Pacific and African Superplumes. A mantle regime change occurred ~ 1.8 Gy ago, leading to increased plume access to these piles.

  9. CHLORINATED SOLVENT PLUME CONTROL

    EPA Science Inventory

    This lecture will cover recent success in controlling and assessing the treatment of shallow ground water plumes of chlorinated solvents, other halogenated organic compounds, and methyl tert-butyl ether (MTBE).

  10. Mars Methane Plume Tracer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mischna, M. A.; Banfield, D.; Sykes, I.

    2014-07-01

    Putative releases of methane from the martian surface may be challenging to detect from orbit. Successful detections depend on the character of the plume itself (duration, magnitude, expanse), but also on the observing platform.

  11. Methane Plumes on Mars

    NASA Video Gallery

    Spectrometer instruments attached to several telescopes detect plumes of methane emitted from Mars during its summer and spring seasons. High levels of methane are indicated by warmer colors. The m...

  12. 3-D numerical modeling of plume-induced subduction initiation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baes, Marzieh; Gerya, taras; Sobolev, Stephan

    2016-04-01

    Investigation of mechanisms involved in formation of a new subduction zone can help us to better understand plate tectonics. Despite numerous previous studies, it is still unclear how and where an old oceanic plate starts to subduct beneath the other plate. One of the proposed scenarios for nucleation of subduction is plume-induced subduction initiation, which was investigated in detail, using 2-D models, by Ueda et al. (2008). Recently. Gerya et al. (2015), using 3D numerical models, proposed that plume-lithosphere interaction in the Archean led to the subduction initiation and onset of plate tectonic. In this study, we aim to pursue work of Ueda et al. (2008) by incorporation of 3-D thermo-mechanical models to investigate conditions leading to oceanic subduction initiation as a result of thermal-chemical mantle plume-lithosphere interaction in the modern earth. Results of our experiments show four different deformation regimes in response to plume-lithosphere interaction, that are a) self-sustaining subduction initiation where subduction becomes self-sustained, b) freezing subduction initiation where subduction stops at shallow depths, c) slab break-off where subducting circular slab breaks off soon after formation and d) plume underplating where plume does not pass through the lithosphere but spreads beneath it (failed subduction initiation). These different regimes depend on several parameters such as plume's size, composition and temperature, lithospheric brittle/plastic strength, age of the oceanic lithosphere and presence/absence of lithospheric heterogeneities. Results show that subduction initiates and becomes self-sustained when lithosphere is older than 10 Myr and non-dimensional ratio of the plume buoyancy force and lithospheric strength above the plume is higher than 2.

  13. Sulfur plumes off Namibia

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    Sulfur plumes rising up from the bottom of the ocean floor produce colorful swirls in the waters off the coast of Namibia in southern Africa. The plumes come from the breakdown of marine plant matter by anaerobic bacteria that do not need oxygen to live. This image was acquired by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on the Terra satellite on April 24, 2002 Credit: Jacques Descloitres, MODIS Land Rapid Response Team, NASA/GSFC

  14. ON THE VIGOR OF MANTLE CONVECTION IN SUPER-EARTHS

    SciTech Connect

    Miyagoshi, Takehiro; Tachinami, Chihiro; Kameyama, Masanori; Ogawa, Masaki E-mail: ctchnm.geo@gmail.com E-mail: cmaogawa@mail.ecc.u-tokyo.ac.jp

    2014-01-01

    Numerical models are presented to clarify how adiabatic compression affects thermal convection in the mantle of super-Earths ten times the Earth's mass. The viscosity strongly depends on temperature, and the Rayleigh number is much higher than that of the Earth's mantle. The strong effect of adiabatic compression reduces the activity of mantle convection; hot plumes ascending from the bottom of the mantle lose their thermal buoyancy in the middle of the mantle owing to adiabatic decompression, and do not reach the surface. A thick lithosphere, as thick as 0.1 times the depth of the mantle, develops along the surface boundary, and the efficiency of convective heat transport measured by the Nusselt number is reduced by a factor of about four compared with the Nusselt number for thermal convection of incompressible fluid. The strong effect of adiabatic decompression is likely to inhibit hot spot volcanism on the surface and is also likely to affect the thermal history of the mantle, and hence, the generation of magnetic field in super-Earths.

  15. Numerical Modeling of Deep Mantle Flow: Thermochemical Convection and Entrainment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mulyukova, Elvira; Steinberger, Bernhard; Dabrowski, Marcin; Sobolev, Stephan

    2013-04-01

    One of the most robust results from tomographic studies is the existence of two antipodally located Large Low Shear Velocity Provinces (LLSVPs) at the base of the mantle, which appear to be chemically denser than the ambient mantle. Results from reconstruction studies (Torsvik et al., 2006) infer that the LLSVPs are stable, long-lived, and are sampled by deep mantle plumes that rise predominantly from their margins. The origin of the dense material is debated, but generally falls within three categories: (i) a primitive layer that formed during magma ocean crystallization, (ii) accumulation of a dense eclogitic component from the recycled oceanic crust, and (iii) outer core material leaking into the lower mantle. A dense layer underlying a less dense ambient mantle is gravitationally stable. However, the flow due to thermal density variations, i.e. hot rising plumes and cold downwelling slabs, may deform the layer into piles with higher topography. Further deformation may lead to entrainment of the dense layer, its mixing with the ambient material, and even complete homogenisation with the rest of the mantle. The amount of the anomalous LLSVP-material that gets entrained into the rising plumes poses a constraint on the survival time of the LLSVPs, as well as on the plume buoyancy, on the lithospheric uplift associated with plume interaction and geochemical signature of the erupted lavas observed at the Earth's surface. Recent estimates for the plume responsible for the formation of the Siberian Flood Basalts give about 15% of entrained dense recycled oceanic crust, which made the hot mantle plume almost neutrally buoyant (Sobolev et al., 2011). In this numerical study we investigate the mechanics of entrainment of a dense basal layer by convective mantle flow. We observe that the types of flow that promote entrainment of the dense layer are (i) upwelling of the dense layer when it gets heated enough to overcome its stabilizing chemical density anomaly, (ii

  16. Early Earth plume-lid tectonics: A high-resolution 3D numerical modelling approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fischer, R.; Gerya, T.

    2016-10-01

    Geological-geochemical evidence point towards higher mantle potential temperature and a different type of tectonics (global plume-lid tectonics) in the early Earth (>3.2 Ga) compared to the present day (global plate tectonics). In order to investigate tectono-magmatic processes associated with plume-lid tectonics and crustal growth under hotter mantle temperature conditions, we conduct a series of 3D high-resolution magmatic-thermomechanical models with the finite-difference code I3ELVIS. No external plate tectonic forces are applied to isolate 3D effects of various plume-lithosphere and crust-mantle interactions. Results of the numerical experiments show two distinct phases in coupled crust-mantle evolution: (1) a longer (80-100 Myr) and relatively quiet 'growth phase' which is marked by growth of crust and lithosphere, followed by (2) a short (∼20 Myr) and catastrophic 'removal phase', where unstable parts of the crust and mantle lithosphere are removed by eclogitic dripping and later delamination. This modelling suggests that the early Earth plume-lid tectonic regime followed a pattern of episodic growth and removal also called episodic overturn with a periodicity of ∼100 Myr.

  17. The size of plume heterogeneities constrained by Marquesas isotopic stripes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chauvel, Catherine; Maury, René C.; Blais, Sylvain; Lewin, Eric; Guillou, Hervé; Guille, GéRard; Rossi, Philippe; Gutscher, Marc-André

    2012-07-01

    The scale and geometry of chemical and isotopic heterogeneities in the source of plumes have important scientific implications on the nature, composition and origin of plumes and on the dynamics of mantle mixing over time. Here, we address these issues through the study of Marquesas Islands, one of the Archipelagoes in Polynesia. We present new Sr, Nd, Pb, Hf isotopes as well as trace element data on lavas from several Marquesas Islands and demonstrate that this archipelago consists of two adjacent and distinct rows of islands with significantly different isotopic compositions. For the entire 5.5 Ma construction period, the northern islands, hereafter called the Ua Huka group, has had systematically higher 87Sr/86Sr and lower 206Pb/204Pb ratios than the southern Fatu Hiva group at any given 143Nd/144Nd value. The shape and curvature of mixing arrays preclude the ambient depleted MORB mantle as one of the mixing end-members. We believe therefore that the entire isotopic heterogeneity originates in the plume itself. We suggest that the two Marquesas isotopic stripes originate from partial melting of two adjacent filaments contained in small plumes or "plumelets" that came from a large dome structure located deep in the mantle under Polynesia. Low-degree partial melting under Marquesas and other "weak" Polynesian hot spot chains (Pitcairn-Gambier, Austral-Cook, Society) sample small areas of the dome and preserve source heterogeneities. In contrast, more productive hot spots build up large islands such as Big Island in Hawaii or Réunion Island, and the higher degrees of melting blur the isotopic variability of the plume source.

  18. Pb - Isotopes and Pulses of the Deccan Plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Basu, A. R.; Yannopoulos, A. S.

    2015-12-01

    Mantle plumes are generally implicated for flood basalt generation in both continental and oceanic environments by impact of large plume heads beneath or within the lithosphere. The Deccan and Siberian flood basalt eruptions, synchronous with the Cretaceous-Paleogene and end-Permian extinctions, respectively, continue to fascinate geoscientists in search for the "kill-mechanisms" by impacts, volcanisms or both. Recently, Richards et al. (2015) proposed that bulk of the Deccan eruption was triggered by the Chicxulub impact. We showed (Basu et al., 1993) that early (68.5 Ma) and late (65 Ma) alkalic pulses of the Deccan were before and after the impact event at 66 Ma. Here, we focus on an extensive volcano-stratigraphic study of Pb isotopic systematics of 69 basaltic samples from 3 subgroups and 12 formations of the Deccan, each sampled from bottom to top along the stratigraphic section, covering the 3km thick 12 Deccan formations. Pb is sensitive to crustal contamination of mantle plume-derived magmas as both the upper and lower mantle are low in Pb (0.02 - 0.15 ppm) compared to ~ 4 ppm in continental crust. The lower Deccan formations of Kalsubai and Lonavala have initial 206Pb/204Pb with a widely varying range (16.543 - 22.823) indicating continental crustal contamination. In contrast, the upper formations of the Wai subgroup show a narrow range of 16.883 to 18.956, reflecting the plume signature. In addition, the 206Pb/204Pb and 207Pb/204Pb data of the Kalsubai subgroup lavas give an isochron age of 2603±140 Ma (single-stage, µ = 8). The Wai subgroup shows a narrow and restricted Pb isotopic range plotting closer to the Geochron. We interpret these data to infer that the basement rocks of the Deccan, the Archean Indian craton, were assimilated by the upwelling melt, ultimately clearing the conduit passages for the lavas sourced from direct melting of the plume head.

  19. Rogue Mantle Helium and Neon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Albarede, F.

    2007-12-01

    The canonical view of He isotope geochemistry holds that high 3He/4He ratios in basalts fingerprints undegassed mantle sources. Hawaiian basalts with unradiogenic He with 3He/4He up to 30 RA are therefore seen as originating from parts of the mantle that is still primordial, at least much more so than MORB mantle (3He/4He ~ 8 RA). This view was strongly reinforced by the discovery of solar and even planetary Ne components in oceanic basalts and gas wells. The canonical view, however, conflicts with multiple observations on ocean islands, notably Hawaiian basalts: the correlation of {187}Os/{186}Os with δ 18O combined with the presence of unusually radiogenic Hf isotope compositions for a given Nd isotope composition and the correlation between Hf and Pb isotopes are all features strongly reminiscent of ancient subducted oceanic crust and pelagic sediments in the source of the Hawaiian plume. These conflicting observations beg the question of how Hawaiian basalts, which carry the embodiment of a primordial gas signature, at the same time can provide such strong evidence of surface material recycling. I here suggest and alternative model that uses the marble cake paradigm and Shuster et al.'s data on olivine. A solution to this conundrum lies in an analogy with oil genesis: 3He and Ne do not reside in the low-melting point peridotites in which they were originally hosted but rather migrated since early in Earth history into refractory 'reservoir' rocks. Since there can be no free gas phase percolating at pressures in excess of olivine carbonation at ~3 GPa, He must be largely redistributed by diffusion. The time scale of diffusion is the defining parameter: although over billions of years 3He diffuses across large distances, melting events are too short to efficiently strip residual refractory rocks from their high-3He/4He component. Assuming that melts begin forming over the uppermost 100 km with an upwelling rate of 10 m y-1 in plume conduits and 10 cm y-1 under

  20. The Earth's Mantle.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McKenzie, D. P.

    1983-01-01

    The nature and dynamics of the earth's mantle is discussed. Research indicates that the silicate mantle is heated by the decay of radioactive isotopes and that the heat energizes massive convention currents in the upper 700 kilometers of the ductile rock. These currents and their consequences are considered. (JN)

  1. Variability of Water in the Convecting Mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hauri, E. H.; Saal, A. E.

    2014-12-01

    Estimation of the abundance of water in mantle sources first requires careful consideration of the shallow-level effects of degassing and contamination by seawater-derived components. Use of submarine glasses erupted at >500m water depth, and critically-evaluated use of melt inclusion volatile contents, can be used to identify and eliminate degassing as an important mitigating factor; widespread evidence for seawater-derived components are evident in halogen contents, but these effects do not typically correlate with water though there may be subtle effects in long-lived magmatic systems at mid-ocean ridges. H2O/Ce ratios show large differences between mid-ocean ridges, hotspots, back-arc basins and arc-front volcanoes that testify to the large input of water at subduction zones; however, at arcs most of the Ce (like most of the water) is derived from the subducting slab, and at hotspots isotopic tracers of recycled components indicate the presence of materials that can, in sufficient quantity, dominate the Ce budget of mantle plumes. Thus H2O/Ce ratios, while useful, are problematic when the goal is to determine the absolute abundances of water in mantle sources because the abundance of Ce cannot normally be assumed with confidence, except perhaps at mid-ocean ridges. A more complete understanding of the abundance of water in mantle sources can be obtained when data for radiogenic isotopes are used as tracers of mantle composition, and when major and trace element data illuminate the process of mantle melting. In areas far from hotspots, normal mid-ocean ridges reveal a remarkably narrow range of H2O/Ce ratios yet display large-scale regional differences between ocean basins [1]. Isotopically enriched signatures at hotspots suggest low absolute H2O abundances [2], yet there is so much water delivered to the sources of arc volcanoes that even >95% dehydration of slabs results in delivery of water to the deep mantle in excess of that observed in MORB sources. The

  2. Two-stage melting and the geochemical evolution of the mantle: a recipe for mantle plum-pudding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phipps Morgan, Jason; Morgan, W. Jason

    1999-07-01

    We explore a geochemical model for mantle evolution where a sequence of hotspot and ridge upwelling has melted the mantle to make hotspot and mid-ocean ridge basalts and their residues, and plate subduction has re-cycled and stirred all of these differentiation products back into the mantle. After billions of years this process has mixed various `plums' of incompatible-element rich veins within a matrix made from the residues of melting that have been depleted in incompatible elements. We propose that the mantle flows upward and melts in a two-stage process. During the first stage, plume upwelling and melting creates an enriched ocean island basalt by extracting a low degree melt (˜1-4%) from the rising mantle mixture. The plums are easier to melt, so proportionally more of the incompatible elements are extracted from these components. After melt extraction, the mixture of leftovers is depleted in composition, even though it still contains ˜96-99% of the mass of the original plume upwelling. These depleted leftovers are hot and buoyant so they pond beneath the lithosphere as an asthenosphere layer. When they rise and melt a second time beneath a mid-ocean ridge, a depleted mid-ocean ridge basalt is extracted. The now extremely depleted leftovers, ˜85% of the mass of the original plume upwelling, accrete to oceanic lithosphere which eventually subducts to recycle leftovers, eroded continental crust, and basaltic plums back into the mantle. Observed trace element, rare gas, and isotopic contrasts between oceanic island and mid-ocean ridge basalts can be produced by a recipe which assumes that throughout Earth history these two sequential stages of deep plume and shallower ridge melting have both created and reprocessed the plums and residues that make up the present-day mantle. In this recipe the two-stage melting process does not change through time, but the rate of mantle overturn slows over time in proportion to the decrease in radioactive heat production.

  3. Seismic Structure and Origin of the Hainan Plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, J.

    2012-12-01

    tomography and receiver function, we consider that the Hainan plume exist in the northeast of Hainan island and may originate from lower mantle. Our result provided new seismological evidences for the scope and origin of Hainan mantle plume.

  4. Seismic anisotropy and mantle flow beneath Africa and Arabia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elsheikh, Ahmed Abdalla

    In spite of numerous studies, the mechanisms for the rifting, uplifting, and volcanism on the African plate remain enigmatic. The most popular hypotheses proposed for explaining these tectonic phenomena involve edge-driven small-scale mantle convection and the thermal or dynamic effects of one or more mantle plumes. In this study we use continental scale shear-wave splitting (SWS) measurements to provide additional constraints on the various models of rifting, uplifting, and volcanism of the Cameroon Volcanic Line (CVL) and the Arabian plate. The splitting of P-to-S converted phases at the core-mantle boundary on the receiver side (XKS including PKS, SKKS, and SKS) is one of the most effective approaches to constrain convective mantle flow patterns. A robust procedure involving automatic and manual batch processing to reliably assess and objectively rank shear-wave splitting parameters were used. The resulting 1532 pairs of splitting parameters show a NNE dominated fast direction. Spatial distribution of the splitting parameters in the CVL and Arabia is not consistent with the edge-driven small-scale mantle convection hypothesis, the mantle plume hypothesis, fossil fabrics formed by past tectonic events, or the fabric-forming process due to the absolute plate motion relative to the deep mantle. The research suggests that the progressive thinning of the lithosphere through basal erosion by the flow leads to decompression melting is responsible for the formation of the CVL, and olivine lattice preferred orientation in the upper asthenosphere associated with the northward motion of the African plate since 150 Ma, most likely causes the observed anisotropy across the Red Sea.

  5. Testing geodynamic models of lowermost mantle flow with a regional shear wave splitting data set

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ford, H. A.; Long, M. D.

    2015-12-01

    Global flow models rely on a number of assumptions, including composition, temperature, viscosity, and deformation mechanism. In the upper mantle, flow models and their associated assumptions can be tested and refined with observations of seismic anisotropy, which is treated as a proxy for flow direction. Beneath the transition zone, direct observations of seismic anisotropy are scarce, except for in the lowermost ~250 km of the mantle. In this study, we utilize a comprehensive, previously published (Ford et al., 2015) shear wave splitting study in order to test a three-dimensional global geodynamic flow model (Walker et al., 2011). Our study focuses on a region of the lowermost mantle along the eastern edge of the African Superplume beneath the Afar region. We find that our observations are fit by a model which invokes slip along the (010) plane of post-perovskite with flow directed down and to the southwest. Critically, we demonstrate the ability of a regional data set to interrogate models of lower mantle flow.

  6. Modelling Constraints From Boundary Layeer Estimates on the Sharpness of Superplumes in the Lower Mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hansen, U.; Yuen, D.

    2002-12-01

    Recent seismic waveform modelling of the lower mantle structure under Africa and the central Pacific unveiled strong lateral heterogeneities in the S-velocity extending from the core-mantle boundary(CMB) to about 1500 km. From the jumps in the SKS travel times seismologists have put bounds on the sharpness of this vertical boundary to be lie between 50 and 80 km and they call these structures vertical "walls". These enigmatic features have been interpreted as evidence for chemical plumes based on arguments drawn from numerical simulations which did not take the depth-dependence of viscosity into account. But it is well known that the dynamical effect of an increasing viscosity is to enhance the thermal contrast between the rising plume and the surrounding mantle. With today's computational resources it is commonplace in 2-D to obtain accurate estimates for the thickness of these "walls" as a function of the lower-mantle viscosity structure and other ambient environmental factors. We can with high-resolution calculations obtain estimates of the transition widths of the boundary layers down to 20 km in 2-D and around 100 km in 3-D cartesian geometries. We have studied the influence of different viscosity-depth profiles on the structure of plumes, both in 2D and 3D calculations. A viscosity profile strongly increasing in the lower mantle, leads to the formation of only a few, strong plumes with a significant thermal contrast and sharp thermal boundaries. A realistic decrease of the thermal expansion coefficient throughout the mantle further amplifies this effect. Our most complex calculations, including also a strong dependence of viscosity on temperature, clearly reveal the formation of superplumes, sharply bordered by thermal boundary layers. On the basis of these results, the finding of relatively sharp structures at the CMB and above would not conclusively imply the existence of thermochemical plumes but can rather be explained by thermally driven instabilities in

  7. Vertical Motions at the Edges of the Icelandic Plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schoonman, Charlotte; White, Nicky; Luckett, Richard

    2015-04-01

    The Icelandic mantle plume, a major convective upwelling, has had a profound effect on the evolution of the North Atlantic region over the last 62 Myrs. Recent body and surface wave tomographic studies show that the planform of the Icelandic Plume is not circular but highly irregular, with fingers of anomalously slow mantle extending beneath the lithosphere of the British Isles and Norway. In these regions, analysis of receiver functions indicates that crustal isostasy does not completely account for present-day topographic elevation, which suggests the presence of a significant component of dynamic support. This study investigates the crustal and mantle structure above these asthenospheric fingers in order to develop an understanding of the interaction between convective processes and their topographic expression at the surface. Large teleseismic earthquakes recorded on a network of broadband, three component seismometers deployed throughout the British Isles are being used to construct receiver functions. Through forward and inverse modelling of these receiver functions, as well as joint inversion of the receiver functions and Rayleigh wave group dispersion data, the velocity structure of the crust and mantle underneath each station is determined. Preliminary results show that anomalously thin crust occurs beneath Northwest Scotland, directly above an asthenospheric finger. Further work will attempt to image the top of the anomalously hot asthenospheric finger and to extend the project into other parts of the North Atlantic Ocean, constraining the spatial distribution of any dynamic topography.

  8. Geochemical Diversity of the Mantle: 50 Years of Acronyms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hart, S. R.

    2014-12-01

    50 years ago, Gast, Tilton and Hedge demonstrated that the oceanic mantle is isotopically heterogeneous. 28 years ago, Zindler and Hart formalized the concept of geochemical mantle components, with an attendant, to some, odious, acronym soup. Work on a marriage of mantle geochemistry and dynamics continues unabated. We know unequivocally that the mantle is chemically heterogeneous; we do not know the scale lengths of these heterogeneities. We know unequivocally that these heterogeneities have persisted for eons (Gy); we do not know where they were formed or where they are stored. Through the kind auspices of the Plume Model, we plausibly have access to the whole mantle. The most accessible and well understood mantle reservoir is the upper depleted MORB mantle (DMM). Classically, this mantle was depleted by extraction of oceanic and continental crust from a "chondritic" bulk silicate Earth. In this post-Boyet and Carlson world, the complementary enriched reservoir may instead be hidden in the deepest mantle. In this case, DMM will become an endangered acronym. Hofmann and White (1982) argued that radiogenic Pb mantle (HIMU) is re-cycled ocean crust, and this is a comfortably viable model. It does require some ad hoc chemical manipulations during subduction. Given 2 Gy of aggregate mantle strains, the mafic component in HIMU may be of small length scale (< 50 m), possibly subsumed into the dominant peridotitic lithology. This mantle species is globally widespread. Enriched mantles (EM1 and EM2) almost certainly reflect recycling of enriched continental material. This was splendidly verified by Jackson et al (2007), with 87Sr/86Sr in Samoan EM2 lavas up to 0.721. The lithology and length scale of EM1 and EM2 is unconstrained. EM1 is globally present; EM2 is confined to the SW Pacific hotspots. FOZO is a work in progress; many would like to see it become extinct! The trace element signatures of HIMU and FOZO mantles have been constrained using melting models; in both

  9. Role of the subduction filter in mantle recycling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kimura, J. I.; Skora, S. E.; Gill, J.; Van Keken, P. E.

    2015-12-01

    Subduction modifies the descending basaltic and sedimentary oceanic crust and generates felsic arc materials and continental crust. Studies of element mass balances in the subduction zone therefore reveal the evolution of the Earth's two major geochemical reservoirs: the continent crust and mantle. We use the Arc Basalt Simulator ver.4 (ABS4) to model the geochemical mass balance during dehydration by prograde metamorphism and melting of the slab followed by subsequent flux melting of the wedge mantle caused by the addition of slab-derived liquids. The geochemistry of high-Mg andesite or adakite formed in a hot subduction zone is akin to the present-day bulk continental crust and to the Archean (>2 Ga) Tonalite-Trondjhemite-Granodiorite composition. Therefore, the residual slab and the metasomatized mantle wedge at hot subduction zones should be the most plausible sources for materials recycled back into the deep mantle. Model calculations of isotopic growth in the residual slab and mantle formed in hot subduction zones reproduce fairly well the EM1-FOZO-HIMU isotope arrays found in ocean island basalts (OIBs) of deep mantle plume origin, although FOZO with high 3He/4He is not generated by this slab recycling process. The recycled materials are bulk igneous ocean crust for HIMU and metasomatized mantle wedge peridotite for EM1. In contrast, the EM2-FOZO array can be generated in a cold subduction zone with igneous oceanic crust for FOZO and sediment for EM2 sources. Necessary residence time are ~2 Ga to form HIMU-FOZO-EM1 and ~1 Ga to form EM2-FOZO. The subducted oceanic crust (forming HIMU) and mantle wedge peridotite (forming EM1) may have travelled in the mantle together. They then melted together in an upwelling mantle plume to form the EM1-FOZO-HIMU isotopic variations found frequently in OIBs. In contrast, the less frequent EM2-FOZO array suggests a separate source and recycling path. These recycling ages are consistent with the change in the mantle potential

  10. Seismic imaging of transition zone discontinuities suggests hot mantle west of Hawaii.

    PubMed

    Cao, Q; van der Hilst, R D; de Hoop, M V; Shim, S-H

    2011-05-27

    The Hawaiian hotspot is often attributed to hot material rising from depth in the mantle, but efforts to detect a thermal plume seismically have been inconclusive. To investigate pertinent thermal anomalies, we imaged with inverse scattering of SS waves the depths to seismic discontinuities below the Central Pacific, which we explain with olivine and garnet transitions in a pyrolitic mantle. The presence of an 800- to 2000-kilometer-wide thermal anomaly (ΔT(max) ~300 to 400 kelvin) deep in the transition zone west of Hawaii suggests that hot material does not rise from the lower mantle through a narrow vertical plume but accumulates near the base of the transition zone before being entrained in flow toward Hawaii and, perhaps, other islands. This implies that geochemical trends in Hawaiian lavas cannot constrain lower mantle domains directly. PMID:21617072

  11. Seismic imaging of transition zone discontinuities suggests hot mantle west of Hawaii.

    PubMed

    Cao, Q; van der Hilst, R D; de Hoop, M V; Shim, S-H

    2011-05-27

    The Hawaiian hotspot is often attributed to hot material rising from depth in the mantle, but efforts to detect a thermal plume seismically have been inconclusive. To investigate pertinent thermal anomalies, we imaged with inverse scattering of SS waves the depths to seismic discontinuities below the Central Pacific, which we explain with olivine and garnet transitions in a pyrolitic mantle. The presence of an 800- to 2000-kilometer-wide thermal anomaly (ΔT(max) ~300 to 400 kelvin) deep in the transition zone west of Hawaii suggests that hot material does not rise from the lower mantle through a narrow vertical plume but accumulates near the base of the transition zone before being entrained in flow toward Hawaii and, perhaps, other islands. This implies that geochemical trends in Hawaiian lavas cannot constrain lower mantle domains directly.

  12. 40 Million Years of the Iceland Plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parnell-Turner, R. E.; White, N.; Henstock, T.; Maclennan, J.; Murton, B. J.; Jones, S. M.

    2011-12-01

    The V-shaped ridges, straddling the mid oceanic ridges to the North and South of Iceland, provide us with a linear record of transient mantle convective circulation. Surprisingly, we know little about the structure of these ridges: prior to this study, the most recent regional seismic reflection profiles were acquired in the 1960s. During the Summer of 2010, we acquired over 3,000 km of seismic reflection data across the oceanic basin South of Iceland. The cornerstones of this programme are two 1000 km flowlines, which traverse the basin from Greenland to the European margin. The geometry of young V-shaped ridges near to the oceanic spreading center has been imaged in fine detail; older ridges, otherwise obscured in gravity datasets by sediment cover, have been resolved for the first time. We have mapped the sediment-basement interface, transformed each profile onto an astronomical time scale, and removed the effects of long wavelength plate cooling. The resulting chronology of Icelandic plume activity provides an important temporal frame of reference for plume flux over the past 40 million years. The profiles also cross major contourite drift deposits, notably the Gardar, Bjorn and Eirik drifts. Fine-scale sedimentary features imaged here demonstrate distinct episodes of drift construction; by making simple assumptions about sedimentation rates, we can show that periods of drift formation correspond to periods of enhanced deep water circulation which is in turn moderated by plume activity. From a regional point of view, this transient behaviour manifests itself in several important ways. Within sedimentary basins fringing the North Atlantic, short lived regional uplift events periodically interrupt thermal subsidence from Eocene times to the present day. From a paleoceanographic perspective, there is good correlation between V-shaped ridge activity and changes in overflow of the ancient precursor to North Atlantic Deep Water. This complete history of the Iceland

  13. Plumes and Earth's Dynamic History : from Core to Biosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Courtillot, V. E.

    2002-12-01

    The last half century has been dominated by the general acceptance of plate tectonics. Although the plume concept emerged early in this story, its role has remained ambiguous. Because plumes are singularities, both in space and time, they tend to lie dangerously close to catastrophism, as opposed to the calm uniformitarian view of plate tectonics. Yet, it has become apparent that singular events and transient phenomena are of great importance, even if by definition they cover only a small fraction of geological time, in diverse observational and theoretical fields such as 1) magnetic reversals and the geodynamo, 2) tomography and mantle convection, 3) continental rifting and collision, and 4) evolution of the fluid envelopes (atmospheric and oceanic "climate"; evolution of species in the biosphere). I will emphasize recent work on different types of plumes and on the correlation between flood basalts and mass extinctions. The origin of mantle plumes remains a controversial topic. We suggest that three types of plumes exist, which originate at the three main discontinuities in the Earth's mantle (base of lithosphere, transition zone and core-mantle boundary). Most of the hotspots are short lived (~ 10Ma) and seem to come from the transition zone or above. Important concentrations occur above the Pacific and African superswells. Less than 10 hotspots have been long lived (~ 100Ma) and may have a very deep origin. In the last 50 Ma, these deep-seated plumes in the Pacific and Indo-Atlantic hemispheres have moved slowly, but motion was much faster prior to that. This change correlates with major episodes of true polar wander. The deeper ("primary") plumes are thought to trace global shifts in quadrupolar convection in the lower mantle. These are the plumes that were born as major flood basalts or oceanic plateaus (designated as large igneous provinces or LIPs). Most have an original volume on the order or in excess of 2.5 Mkm3. In most provinces, volcanism lasted on

  14. Lower mantle thermal structure deduced from seismic tomography, mineral physics and numerical modelling

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cadek, O.; Yuen, D. A.; Steinbach, V.; Chopelas, A.; Matyska, C.

    1994-01-01

    The long-wavelength thermal anomalies in the lower mantle have been mapped out using several seismic tomographic models in conjunction with thermodynamic parameters derived from high-pressure mineral physics experiments. These parameters are the depth variations of thermal expansivity and of the proportionality factor between changes in density and seismic velocity. The giant plume-like structures in the lower mantle under the Pacific Ocean and Africa have outer fringes with thermal anomalies around 300-400 K, but very high temperatures are found in the center of the plumes near the base of the core-mantle boundary. These extreme values can exceed +1500 K and may reflect large hot thermal anomalies in the lower mantle, which are supported by recent measurements of high melting temperatures of perovskite and iron. Extremely cold anomalies, around -1500 K, are found for anomalies in the deep mantle around the Pacific rim and under South America. Numerical simulations show that large negative thermal anomalies in the mid-lower mantle have modest magnitudes of around -500 K. correlation pattern exists between the present-day locations of cold masses in the lower mantle and the sites of past subduction since the Cretaceous. Results from correlation analysis show that the slab mass-flux in the lower mantle did not conform to a steady-state nature but exhibited time-dependent behavior.

  15. Solid-liquid iron partitioning in Earth's deep mantle.

    PubMed

    Andrault, Denis; Petitgirard, Sylvain; Lo Nigro, Giacomo; Devidal, Jean-Luc; Veronesi, Giulia; Garbarino, Gaston; Mezouar, Mohamed

    2012-07-18

    Melting processes in the deep mantle have important implications for the origin of the deep-derived plumes believed to feed hotspot volcanoes such as those in Hawaii. They also provide insight into how the mantle has evolved, geochemically and dynamically, since the formation of Earth. Melt production in the shallow mantle is quite well understood, but deeper melting near the core-mantle boundary remains controversial. Modelling the dynamic behaviour of deep, partially molten mantle requires knowledge of the density contrast between solid and melt fractions. Although both positive and negative melt buoyancies can produce major chemical segregation between different geochemical reservoirs, each type of buoyancy yields drastically different geodynamical models. Ascent or descent of liquids in a partially molten deep mantle should contribute to surface volcanism or production of a deep magma ocean, respectively. We investigated phase relations in a partially molten chondritic-type material under deep-mantle conditions. Here we show that the iron partition coefficient between aluminium-bearing (Mg,Fe)SiO(3) perovskite and liquid is between 0.45 and 0.6, so iron is not as incompatible with deep-mantle minerals as has been reported previously. Calculated solid and melt density contrasts suggest that melt generated at the core-mantle boundary should be buoyant, and hence should segregate upwards. In the framework of the magma oceans induced by large meteoritic impacts on early Earth, our results imply that the magma crystallization should push the liquids towards the surface and form a deep solid residue depleted in incompatible elements.

  16. Solid-liquid iron partitioning in Earth's deep mantle.

    PubMed

    Andrault, Denis; Petitgirard, Sylvain; Lo Nigro, Giacomo; Devidal, Jean-Luc; Veronesi, Giulia; Garbarino, Gaston; Mezouar, Mohamed

    2012-07-19

    Melting processes in the deep mantle have important implications for the origin of the deep-derived plumes believed to feed hotspot volcanoes such as those in Hawaii. They also provide insight into how the mantle has evolved, geochemically and dynamically, since the formation of Earth. Melt production in the shallow mantle is quite well understood, but deeper melting near the core-mantle boundary remains controversial. Modelling the dynamic behaviour of deep, partially molten mantle requires knowledge of the density contrast between solid and melt fractions. Although both positive and negative melt buoyancies can produce major chemical segregation between different geochemical reservoirs, each type of buoyancy yields drastically different geodynamical models. Ascent or descent of liquids in a partially molten deep mantle should contribute to surface volcanism or production of a deep magma ocean, respectively. We investigated phase relations in a partially molten chondritic-type material under deep-mantle conditions. Here we show that the iron partition coefficient between aluminium-bearing (Mg,Fe)SiO(3) perovskite and liquid is between 0.45 and 0.6, so iron is not as incompatible with deep-mantle minerals as has been reported previously. Calculated solid and melt density contrasts suggest that melt generated at the core-mantle boundary should be buoyant, and hence should segregate upwards. In the framework of the magma oceans induced by large meteoritic impacts on early Earth, our results imply that the magma crystallization should push the liquids towards the surface and form a deep solid residue depleted in incompatible elements. PMID:22810700

  17. The Mantle Seismic Heterogeneities Inferred by USArray Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ko, J. Y. T.; Zhan, Z.; Hung, S. H.; Li, D.; Helmberger, D. V.

    2015-12-01

    The detailed images of mantle seismic heterogeneities is establishing the link between modern mantle dynamics and past surface geological evolutions. The recent deployment of the USArray network of seismometers rolling from the west coast to the east coast of United States during 2004 to 2015 afford an extraordinary data set to investigate such mantle seismic heterogeneities. Here we first explored the D" structure beneath Caribbean region and found an east-to-west asymmetrical undulation of the D" discontinuity with a V-shaped depression of ~80-150 km over a lateral distance of 600 km, coinciding with a similar trend of shear wave velocity showing the most profound reduction of ~5% at the bottom of the thinnest D" layer. The strong correlation between the D" topography and velocity variations indicates lateral fluctuation in the D" temperature modulated by the reheated slab material has perturbed the phase transition boundary significantly and may reflect a transitional period of the proposed mega-plume scenario. Secondly, these emerging data not only shed light on the lowermost mantle structures but provide new constraints on the mid and upper mantle seismic velocity heterogeneities beneath the United States. We found that frequency-dependent traveltime residuals and amplitudes of S waves from South America events display considerable scatter patterns recorded by USArray stations which can be attributed to upper mantle heterogeneities beneath the U.S. and mid or lower mantle seismic anomalies along the raypaths. The analysis of waveform complexity is utilized in this work and gives complementary constraints on the location and geometry of these mantle heterogeneities such as possible slab remnants below Central and Eastern United States. We further exploited the newly developed 2D finite-difference method with various mantle heterogeneity models to better understand the possible geophysical features producing these anomalies.

  18. Thermal Conductivity Of Earth's Deepest Mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hofmeister, A. M.

    2006-05-01

    Thermal transport properties in the deep mantle are estimated, due to the lack of suitable samples and difficulties in attaining realistic temperatures: (1)The lattice component of thermal diffusivity (D) is constrained through measurements of dense phases with diverse chemical compositions made using the laser-flash technique, which is accurate (2%) and eliminates spurious direct radiative transfer. Thermal diffusivity is constant once a critical temperature (Tsat) of 1100 to 1500K is exceeded. The saturated mean free path (Lsat, computed from Dsat and sound velocities) nearly equals the primitive lattice parameter A. This relationship is used to estimate temperature independent values of D and klat in the lower mantle. Pressure derivatives are predicted by the damped harmonic oscillator model. (2)An effective thermal conductivity krad due to diffusion of heat by phonons is calculated from near-IR to UV spectra. To represent the internally heated, grainy mantle, our formulation accounts for emissivity depending on frequency, physical scattering depending on grain-size (d), and for reduction of intensity through back-reflections at interfaces. Pressure effects should be insignificant. To obtain krad at high T from perovskite spectra that are taken only at 298K, an approximate analytical solution is derived, which indicates that krad depends nearly linearly on T in the lower mantle. For perovskite (and probably post-pv), krad has a maximum at X=0.05 Fe no. for d=1 mm. At X=0.1, krad is maximized at d=3 mm. Because our approximation does not account for interface reflections, krad is overestimated at large X and d. The maxima would be sharper and shifted to slightly lower values, had this effect been included. Due to grain-size size effects, mainly shortening the mean free path, krad is low for minerals with low spin Fe, for which case a maximumin krad exists at high Fe content. Plumes are expected to form under destabilizing conditions of low thermal conductivity

  19. Collapse in Thermal Plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pears, M. I.; Lithgow-Bertelloni, C. R.; Dobson, D. P.; Davies, R.

    2013-12-01

    Collapsing thermal plumes have been investigated through experimental and numerical simulations. Collapsing plumes are an uncommon fluid dynamical phenomenon, usually seen when the buoyancy source is turned off. A series of fluid dynamical experiments were conducted on thermal plumes at a variety of temperature and viscosity contrasts, in a 26.5 cm^3 cubic tank heated by a constant temperature heater 2 cm in diameter and no-slip bottom and top surfaces. Working fluids included Lyle's Golden Syrup and ADM's Liquidose 436 syrup, which have strongly-temperature dependent viscosity and high Pr number (10^3-10^7 at experimental conditions). Visualisation included white light shadowgraphs and PIV of the central plane. Temperature contrasts ranged from 3-60°C, and two differing forms of collapse were identified. At very low temperature differences 'no rise' collapse was discovered, where the plumes stagnate in the lower third of the tank before collapsing. At temperature differences between 10-23°C normal evolution occurred until 'lens shape' collapse developed between midway and two-thirds of the distance from the base. The lens shape originated in the top of the conduit and was present throughout collapse. At temperatures above ΔT=23°C the plumes follow the expected growth and shape and flatten out at the top of the tank. Thermal collapse remains difficult to explain given experimental conditions (continuous heating). Instead it is possible that small density differences arising from crystallization at ambient temperatures changes plume buoyancy-inducing collapse. We show results on the evolution of the refractive index of the syrup through time to ascertain this possibility. Preliminary numerical results using Fluidity will be presented to explore a greater parameter range of viscosity contrasts and tank aspect ratios.

  20. Rocket plume burn hazard.

    PubMed

    Stoll, A M; Piergallini, J R; Chianta, M A

    1980-05-01

    By use of miniature rocket engines, the burn hazard posed by exposure to ejection seat rocket plume flames was determined in the anaesthetized rat. A reference chart is provided for predicting equivalent effects in human skin based on extrapolation of earlier direct measurements of heat input for rat and human burns. The chart is intended to be used in conjunction with thermocouple temperature measurements of the plume environment for design and modification of escape seat system to avoid thermal injury on ejection from multiplace aircraft. PMID:7387571

  1. Mineralogy and composition of the oceanic mantle

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Putirka, Keith; Ryerson, F.J.; Perfit, Michael; Ridley, W. Ian

    2011-01-01

    The mineralogy of the oceanic basalt source region is examined by testing whether a peridotite mineralogy can yield observed whole-rock and olivine compositions from (1) the Hawaiian Islands, our type example of a mantle plume, and (2) the Siqueiros Transform, which provides primitive samples of normal mid-ocean ridge basalt. New olivine compositional data from phase 2 of the Hawaii Scientific Drilling Project (HSDP2) show that higher Ni-in-olivine at the Hawaiian Islands is due to higher temperatures (T) of melt generation and processing (by c. 300°C) related to the Hawaiian mantle plume. DNi is low at high T, so parental Hawaiian basalts are enriched in NiO. When Hawaiian (picritic) parental magmas are transported to shallow depths, olivine precipitation occurs at lower temperatures, where DNi is high, leading to high Ni-in-olivine. Similarly, variations in Mn and Fe/Mn ratios in olivines are explained by contrasts in the temperatures of magma processing. Using the most mafic rocks to delimit Siqueiros and Hawaiian Co and Ni contents in parental magmas and mantle source compositions also shows that both suites can be derived from natural peridotites, but are inconsistent with partial melting of natural pyroxenites. Whole-rock compositions at Hawaii and Siqueiros are also matched by partial melting experiments conducted on peridotite bulk compositions. Hawaiian whole-rocks have elevated FeO contents compared with Siqueiros, which can be explained if Hawaiian parental magmas are generated from peridotite at 4-5 GPa, in contrast to pressures of slightly greater than 1 GPa for melt generation at Siqueiros; these pressures are consistent with olivine thermometry, as described in an earlier paper. SiO2-enriched Koolau compositions are reproduced if high-Fe Hawaiian parental magmas re-equilibrate at 1-1·5 GPa. Peridotite partial m