Sample records for rifting taupo volcanic

  1. Off-axis magmatism along a subaerial back-arc rift: Observations from the Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand.

    Hamling, Ian J; Hreinsdóttir, Sigrun; Bannister, Stephen; Palmer, Neville


    Continental rifting and seafloor spreading play a fundamental role in the generation of new crust. However, the distribution of magma and its relationship with tectonics and volcanism remain poorly understood, particularly in back-arc settings. We show evidence for a large, long-lived, off-axis magmatic intrusion located on the margin of the Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand. Geodetic data acquired since the 1950s show evidence for uplift outside of the region of active extension, consistent with the inflation of a magmatic body at a depth of ~9.5 km. Satellite radar interferometry and Global Positioning System data suggest that there was an increase in the inflation rate from 2003 to 2011, which correlates with intense earthquake activity in the region. Our results suggest that the continued growth of a large magmatic body may represent the birth of a new magma chamber on the margins of a back-arc rift system.

  2. Tectonic localization of multi-plume hydrothermal fluid flow in a segmented rift system, Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand

    Rowland, J. V.; Downs, D. T.; Scholz, C.; de P. S. Zuquim, M.


    High-temperature (>250°C) multi-plume hydrothermal systems occur in a range of tectonic settings, though most are extensional or transtensional. A key feature of such settings is their tendency to partition into discrete structural elements that scale with the thickness of the seismogenic zone. The late Miocene to present record of arc magmatism and rifting in the North Island of New Zealand illustrates the importance of structural segmentation and reactivation of inherited basement fabrics on the localisation of hydrothermal upflow. The 15 My record of similarly-oriented magmatism, rifting and hydrothermal activity associated with subduction of the Pacific Plate beneath the North Island of New Zealand. Lateral migration of the locus of arc magmatism, concomitant with roll-back of the subducting slab, is supported by the SE-directed younging of: 1) volcanism; 2) fault-controlled rift basins; and 3) hydrothermal activity, represented by the distribution of epithermal mineralisation within the ~15-3 Ma Coromandel Volcanic Zone (CVZ), and geothermal activity within the TVZ. Currently the TVZ is extending in a NW-SE direction at a rate that varies from ~3 mm/yr to ~15 mm/yr from SW to NE, respectively. The TVZ is partitioned into discrete rift segments, comprising arrays of NE-striking normal faults of ~20 km in length, as expected on mechanical grounds for the 6-8 km-thick seismogenic zone. Transfer zones between rift segments coincide with N-to-NW-trending alignments of geothermal fields, spaced ~ 30 km apart can be recognized elsewhere within the CVZ. The most productive epithermal deposits to date are localised where these inferred transfer zones intersect arc-parallel fault arrays. A similar tectonic configuration occurs in the Deseado Massif, Argentinian Patagonia, where interplay between transfer and rift faults is inferred to have localized hydrothermal fluids in small pull-apart basins and arrays of extension veins for durations >30 My.

  3. Structure and kinematics of the Taupo Rift, New Zealand

    Seebeck, Hannu; Nicol, Andrew; Villamor, Pilar; Ristau, John; Pettinga, Jarg


    The structure and kinematics of the continental intra-arc Taupo Rift have been constrained by fault-trace mapping, a large catalogue of focal mechanisms (N = 202) and fault slip striations. The mean extension direction of ~137° is approximately orthogonal to the regional trend of the rift and arc front (α = 84° and 79°, respectively) and to the strike of the underlying subducting Pacific Plate. Bending and rollback of the subduction hinge strongly influence the location, orientation, and extension direction of intra-arc rifting in the North Island. In detail, orthogonal rifting (α = 85-90°) transitions northward to oblique rifting (α = 69-71°) across a paleovertical-axis rotation boundary where rift faults, extension directions, and basement fabric rotate by ~20-25°. Toward the south, extension is orthogonal to normal faults which are parallel to, and reactivate, steeply dipping basement fabric. Basement reactivation facilitates strain partitioning with a portion of margin-parallel motion in the overriding plate mainly accommodated east of the rift by strike-slip faults in the North Island Fault System (NIFS). Toward the north where the rift and NIFS intersect, ~4 mm/yr strike slip is transferred into the rift with net oblique extension accommodating a component of margin-parallel motion. The trend and kinematics of the Taupo Rift are comparable to late Miocene-Pliocene intra-arc rifting in the Taranaki Basin, indicating that the northeast strike of the subducting plate and the southeast extension direction have been uniform since at least 4 Ma.

  4. A catalogue of caldera unrest at Taupo Volcanic Centre, New Zealand, using the Volcanic Unrest Index (VUI)

    Potter, Sally H.; Scott, Bradley J.; Jolly, Gill E.; Johnston, David M.; Neall, Vince E.


    Caldera unrest occurs frequently at Taupo Volcanic Centre (TVC), New Zealand, occasionally resulting in deleterious socio-economic impacts. This large silicic volcano most recently erupted in 232 AD in an explosive, caldera-forming rhyolitic eruption, devastating the central North Island. Eruptions are preceded by volcanic unrest, often consisting of seismicity, deformation, degassing, and/or geothermal system changes. These phenomena may also occur due to non-magmatic processes, complicating eruption forecasting. As volcanic unrest may or may not lead to an eruption, it needs to be characterised to provide effective warnings; this is best achieved by understanding past unrest. In this research, a catalogue of caldera unrest at TVC is developed using an historical chronology methodology, spanning from 1872 to December 2011. The Volcanic Unrest Index (VUI), which is introduced by Potter et al. (2015), is estimated for the catalogue, demonstrating its use and providing a characterisation of unrest at TVC. Sixteen episodes of unrest are identified; 4 are classified as moderate unrest (VUI 3), and 12 are classified as minor unrest (VUI 2). There has been median interval of approximately 3 years between unrest episodes and a median unrest episode duration of just under 5 months. This research provides context for future caldera unrest crises at TVC and contributes to the global caldera unrest dataset.

  5. Imaging the Roots of Geothermal Systems: 3-D Inversion of Magnetotelluric Array Data in the Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand

    Bertrand, E. A.; Caldwell, G.; Bannister, S. C.; Hill, G.; Bennie, S.


    The Taupo Volcanic Zone (TVZ), located in the central North Island of New Zealand, is a rifted arc that contains more than 20 liquid-dominated high-temperature geothermal systems, which together discharge ~4.2 GW of heat at the surface. The shallow (upper ~500 m) extent of these geothermal systems is marked by low-resistivity, mapped by tens-of-thousands of DC resistivity measurements collected throughout the 1970's and 80's. Conceptual models of heat transport through the brittle crust of the TVZ link these low-resistivity anomalies to the tops of vertically ascending plumes of convecting hydrothermal fluid. Recently, data from a 40-site array of broadband seismometers with ~4 km station spacing, and an array of 270 broadband magnetotelluric (MT) measurements with ~2 km station spacing, have been collected in the south-eastern part of the TVZ in an experiment to image the deep structure (or roots) of the geothermal systems in this region. Unlike DC resistivity, these MT measurements are capable of resolving the resistivity structure of the Earth to depths of 10 km or more. 2-D and 3-D models of subsets of these MT data have been used to provide the first-ever images of quasi-vertical low-resistivity zones (at depths of 3-7 km) that connect with the near-surface geothermal fields. These low-resistivity zones are interpreted to represent convection plumes of high-temperature fluids ascending within fractures, which supply heat to the overlying geothermal fields. At the Rotokawa, Ngatamariki and Ohaaki geothermal fields, these plumes extend to a broad layer of low-resistivity, inferred to represent a magmatic, basal heat source located below the seismogenic zone (at ~7-8 km depth) that drives convection in the brittle crust above. Little is known about the mechanisms that transfer heat into the hydrothermal regime. However, at Rotokawa, new 3-D resistivity models image a vertical low-resistivity zone that lies directly beneath the geothermal field. The top of this

  6. Ecological characteristics and management of geothermal systems of the Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand

    Boothroyd, Ian K.G. [Golder Associates Ltd., P.O. Box 33849, Takapuna, and School of Geography, Geology and Environmental Science, University of Auckland, Private Bag 92019, Auckland (New Zealand)


    New Zealand has an array of geothermal systems with distinctive ecological features, with many occurring in the Taupo Volcanic Zone in the Central North Island. Associated with these geothermal features are characteristic geophysical and geochemical components, and distinctive terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems with many attributes that are common across a range of the biotic groups. Zonation amongst vegetation communities is closely related to soil temperature and these associations generally occur in a predictable sequence along the soil temperature gradient. Similarly, clear distinctions in aquatic flora and fauna occur longitudinally downstream from the source of thermal springs and vertically on geyser mounds. The characteristic vegetation communities associated with geothermal fields and the invertebrate and algal communities found in geothermally influenced springs and streams are described, in particular the features of the Wairakei geothermal field. At this field four plant associations are recognized (non-vegetated soilfield, prostrate kanuka shrubland, prostrate kanuka scrub, mixed fernland), but all the major aquatic macroinvertebrate groups are represented and commonly found in natural freshwaters throughout New Zealand. The current management of geothermal ecosystems is reviewed with particular reference to the Waikato region of New Zealand. Management of geothermal resources in New Zealand aims to balance development with the protection of highly valued surface features via a series of regional policies, rules and regulations. Geothermal habitats, ecological gradients, and at-risk geothermal plants are included in the definition of geothermal systems for management purposes. With the recognition of the unique ecological diversity and function of geothermal ecosystems, knowledge and understanding of their ecological characteristics will be critical to the ability to utilize and sustain geothermal resources into the future. (author)

  7. Energy transport processes in a brittle ductile intrusive model of the Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand

    Weir, Graham J.


    The implications of the findings of recent GPS and micro-seismic studies in the Taupo Volcanic Zone (TVZ), New Zealand, on models of processes transporting mass, heat and chemicals are discussed. It is argued that in addition to the well established process of groundwater convection extracting heat and chemicals by interacting with magmatic intrusives under the TVZ, that two other processes may be important. Firstly, the existence of a ductile layer with very low permeability between about 8 to 15 km depth will produce a region of `enhanced conduction' in which very high conductive fluxes of energy arise from a temperature distribution which varies exponentially with depth. Secondly, water may transport up through the ductile layer, as a result of extensional processes in the ductile region. If extension is occurring at about 8 mm/yr, then geothermal heat transfer in the TVZ of about 4200 MW is made up from about 1200 MW from the cooling of intrusives in the brittle region in the upper 8 km; of about an additional 1900 MW of conducted heat entering the brittle region from the ductile region; and about an additional 1100 MW from water transport through the ductile region. Provided this water flow has a chloride concentration similar to that emitted from nearby volcanoes, then the total chloride transport from the TVZ is about 3.5 kg/s, as suggested by average enthalpy to chloride ratios in the TVZ of about 1.2 MJ/g. The present high heat and mass transport processes in the TVZ are assumed to result from the passive filling of volume created from extensional processes under the TVZ, plus conductive and/or convective heating processes below 15 km depth.

  8. A multidisciplinary approach to quantify the permeability of the Whakaari/White Island volcanic hydrothermal system (Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand)

    Heap, Michael J.; Kennedy, Ben M.; Farquharson, Jamie I.; Ashworth, James; Mayer, Klaus; Letham-Brake, Mark; Reuschlé, Thierry; Gilg, H. Albert; Scheu, Bettina; Lavallée, Yan; Siratovich, Paul; Cole, Jim; Jolly, Arthur D.; Baud, Patrick; Dingwell, Donald B.


    Our multidisciplinary study aims to better understand the permeability of active volcanic hydrothermal systems, a vital prerequisite for modelling and understanding their behaviour and evolution. Whakaari/White Island volcano (an active stratovolcano at the north-eastern end of the Taupo Volcanic Zone of New Zealand) hosts a highly reactive hydrothermal system and represents an ideal natural laboratory to undertake such a study. We first gained an appreciation of the different lithologies at Whakaari and (where possible) their lateral and vertical extent through reconnaissance by land, sea, and air. The main crater, filled with tephra deposits, is shielded by a volcanic amphitheatre comprising interbedded lavas, lava breccias, and tuffs. We deployed field techniques to measure the permeability and density/porosity of (1) > 100 hand-sized sample blocks and (2) layered unlithified deposits in eight purpose-dug trenches. Our field measurements were then groundtruthed using traditional laboratory techniques on almost 150 samples. Our measurements highlight that the porosity of the materials at Whakaari varies from ∼ 0.01 to ∼ 0.7 and permeability varies by eight orders of magnitude (from ∼ 10-19 to ∼ 10-11 m2). The wide range in physical and hydraulic properties is the result of the numerous lithologies and their varied microstructures and alteration intensities, as exposed by a combination of macroscopic and microscopic (scanning electron microscopy) observations, quantitative mineralogical studies (X-ray powder diffraction), and mercury porosimetry. An understanding of the spatial distribution of lithology and alteration style/intensity is therefore important to decipher fluid flow within the Whakaari volcanic hydrothermal system. We align our field observations and porosity/permeability measurements to construct a schematic cross section of Whakaari that highlights the salient findings of our study. Taken together, the alteration typical of a volcanic

  9. Mihi Breccia: A stack of lacustrine sediments and subaqueous pyroclastic flows within the Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand

    Downs, Drew


    The Taupo Volcanic Zone (TVZ), New Zealand, encompasses a wide variety of arc-related strata, although most of its small-volume (non-caldera-forming) eruptions are poorly-exposed and extensively hydrothermally altered. The Mihi Breccia is a stratigraphic sequence consisting of interbedded rhyolitic pyroclastic flows and lacustrine sediments with eruption ages of 281 ± 18 to at least 239 ± 6 ka (uncertainties at 2σ). In contrast to other small-volume rhyolitic eruptions within the TVZ, Mihi Breccia is relatively well-exposed within the Paeroa fault block, and contains minimal hydrothermal alteration. Pyroclastic flow characteristics and textures including: 1) breadcrusted juvenile clasts, 2) lack of welding, 3) abundant ash-rich matrix, 4) lack of fiamme and eutaxitic textures, 5) lack of thermal oxidation colors, 6) lack of cooling joints, 7) exclusive lacustrine sediment lithic clasts, and 8) interbedding with lacustrine sediments, all indicating that Mihi Breccia strata originated in a paleo-lake system. This ephemeral paleo-lake system is inferred to have lasted for > 50 kyr (based on Mihi Breccia age constraints), and referred to as Huka Lake. Mihi Breccia pyroclastic flow juvenile clast geochemistry and petrography correspond with similar-aged (264 ± 8, 263 ± 10, and 247 ± 4 ka) intra-caldera rhyolite domes filling the Reporoa caldera (source of the 281 ± 81 Kaingaroa Formation ignimbrite). These exposed intra-caldera rhyolite domes (as well as geophysically inferred subsurface domes) are proposed to be source vents for the Mihi Breccia pyroclastic flows. Soft-sediment deformation associated with Mihi Breccia strata indicate either seismic shock, rapid sediment loading during pyroclastic flow emplacement, or both. Thus, the Mihi Breccia reflects a prolonged series of subaqueous rhyolite dome building and associated pyroclastic flows, accompanied by seismic activity, emplaced into a large paleo-lake system within the TVZ.

  10. Mihi Breccia: A stack of lacustrine sediments and subaqueous pyroclastic flows within the Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand

    Downs, Drew T.


    The Taupo Volcanic Zone (TVZ), New Zealand, encompasses a wide variety of arc-related strata, although most of its small-volume (non-caldera-forming) eruptions are poorly-exposed and extensively hydrothermally altered. The Mihi Breccia is a stratigraphic sequence consisting of interbedded rhyolitic pyroclastic flows and lacustrine sediments with eruption ages of 281 ± 18 to at least 239 ± 6 ka (uncertainties at 2σ). In contrast to other small-volume rhyolitic eruptions within the TVZ, Mihi Breccia is relatively well-exposed within the Paeroa fault block, and contains minimal hydrothermal alteration. Pyroclastic flow characteristics and textures include: 1) prismatically jointed juvenile clasts, 2) lack of welding, 3) abundant ash-rich matrix, 4) lack of fiamme and eutaxitic textures, 5) lack of thermal oxidation colors, 6) lack of cooling joints, 7) exclusive lacustrine sediment lithic clasts, and 8) interbedding with lacustrine sediments, all indicating that Mihi Breccia strata originated in a paleo-lake system. This ephemeral paleo-lake system is inferred to have lasted for > 50 kyr (based on Mihi Breccia age constraints), and referred to as Huka Lake. Mihi Breccia pyroclastic flow juvenile clast geochemistry and petrography correspond with similar-aged (264 ± 8, 263 ± 10, and 247 ± 4 ka) intra-caldera rhyolite domes filling the Reporoa caldera (source of the 281 ka Kaingaroa Formation ignimbrite). These exposed intra-caldera rhyolite domes (as well as geophysically inferred subsurface domes) are proposed to be source vents for the Mihi Breccia pyroclastic flows. Soft-sediment deformation associated with Mihi Breccia strata indicates either seismic shock, rapid sediment loading during pyroclastic flow emplacement, or both. Thus, the Mihi Breccia reflects a prolonged series of subaqueous rhyolite dome building and associated pyroclastic flows, accompanied by seismic activity, emplaced into a large paleo-lake system within the TVZ.

  11. Geochemical variability of hydrothermal emissions between three Pacific volcanic arc systems: Alaskan-Aleutian and Cascadian, North America and Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand

    Blackstock, J. M.; Horton, T. W.; Gravley, D. M.; Deering, C. D.


    Knowledge of the source, transport, and fate of hydrothermal fluids in the upper crust informs our understanding and interpretation of ore-forming processes, volcanogenic hazards, geothermal resources, and volatile cycling. Co-variation between fluid inclusion CO2/CH4 and N2/Ar ratios is an established tracer of magmatic, meteoric, and crustal fluid end-members. Yet, this tracer has had limited application to macroscopic fluid reservoirs accessible via geothermal wells and hydrothermal features (e.g. pools). In this study, we compared the covariance CO2/CH4 and N2/Ar ratios of gases collected throughout the Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand (TVZ), the Alaska-Aleutian Volcanic Arc, USA (AAVA), and the Cascadian Volcanic Arc, USA (CVA) with corresponding δ13C and 3He/4He values. Our findings show that there is good agreement between these proxies for different end-member contributions at coarse scales. However, some samples classified as meteoric water according to the CO2/CH4 and N2/Ar ratios also show more positive δ13C values (~ -7.0 per mil) and relatively higher 3He/4He ratios indicative of magmatic input from primarily mantle sources. This unexpected result may be related to magmatic fluids, CO2 in particular, mixing with predominantly meteoric derived waters. The potential to identify magmatic CO2 in groundwater samples overlying geothermal systems in differing volcanic arc settings using simple and cost-effective gas ratios is a promising step forward in the search for ';surface blind' but developable geothermal systems and volcanic monitoring. 3He/4He anomalies also support this inference and underscore the potential decoupling of thermal anomalies and magmatic-derived fluids in the Earth's crust. The general agreement between the co-variation of CO2/CH4 and N2/Ar ratios with other isotope and geochemical proxies for magmatic, meteoric, and crustal end-members is encouraging to employ expanded use of these ratios for both the exploration and monitoring of

  12. Thermo-physical rock properties of greywacke basement rock and intrusive lavas from the Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand

    Mielke, P.; Weinert, S.; Bignall, G.; Sass, I.


    Greywacke of the Waipapa and Torlesse (Composite) Terrane form the basement of the Taupo Volcanic Zone (TVZ), New Zealand. Together with inferred buried lavas, domes and igneous complexes they are likely to be the dominant rock type prevailing at depths > 4 km beneath the TVZ. A fundamental understanding of the rock properties of the deep formations is of utmost importance for the exploration of deep unconventional geothermal resources. An outcrop analogue study was conducted to improve the understanding of the thermo-physical rock properties of likely deep buried rock formations beneath the TVZ. A total of 145 core samples were taken at 10 locations inside and outside the TVZ and their grain and bulk density, porosity, matrix permeability, bulk thermal conductivity and specific heat capacity, and the compressional and shear wave velocities measured on oven-dry samples. Additional tests of the unconfined compressive strength were conducted for selected greywacke samples to quantify their mechanical rock strength. The obtained data indicates that the thermo-physical rock properties are mainly controlled by porosity, and minor by mineralogy, texture and grain size. Samples from Waipapa-type and Torlesse-type greywacke exhibit minor rheological differences, with Waipapa-type greywacke having lowest porosity (about 1% vs. 3%) and highest bulk thermal conductivity (2.5 W m- 1 K- 1 vs. 1.7 W m- 1 K- 1) and specific heat capacity (0.8 kJ kg- 1 K- 1 vs. 0.7 kJ kg- 1 K- 1). Matrix permeability is rock properties due to their wide range of porosity (rock properties were tested at laboratory conditions (ambient temperature and pressure), which do not reflect the in situ conditions at greater depth. With depth, thermal conductivity and acoustic wave velocity are likely to decrease caused by micro fractures resulting from thermal cracking of the rock, while specific heat capacity increases. The data presented in this paper are expected to improve the statistical confidence on

  13. The petrology, geochronology and geochemistry of Hauhungatahi volcano, S.W. Taupo Volcanic Zone

    Cameron, Errol; Gamble, John; Price, Richard; Smith, Ian; McIntosh, William; Gardner, Mairi


    Hauhungatahi volcano is an eroded andesitic edifice 10 km west of Ruapehu volcano constructed on an upfaulted block of Mesozoic marine sediments. Hauhungatahi andesites are distinctively clinopyroxene-phyric with high ratios of clinopyroxene:plagioclase. This contrasts with the plagioclase-phyric dominated assemblages in the stratovolcanoes such as Ruapehu and Tongariro. Hauhungatahi andesites show high MgO (> 8.0% wt), Sr (> 400 ppm), Ni (> 100 ppm) and Cr (> 400 ppm) and low Si, Rb, Ba and Zr relative to andesites from Ruapehu volcano, with fractionated LREE (Ce/Sm) n ~ 2 and flat HREE (Dy/Yb) n ~ 1. Sr-isotope ratios are lower at equivalent Nd isotope ratios than Ruapehu andesites of the (oldest) Te Herenga Formation. 40Ar/ 39Ar step-heating experiments of groundmass concentrates of 4 samples have yielded ages between 881 ± 83 ka and 961 ± 59 ka, with a weighted mean age of 933 ± 46 ka, indicating that Hauhungatahi is significantly older than Ruapehu Volcano where volcanism commenced ~ 250-300 ka. Hauhungatahi is therefore similar in age to the older andesitic edifices that are marginal to the TVZ (eg Titiraupenga, Pureora and Rolles Peak). We suggest that these high-Mg andesites hold clues to the early conditioning of the lithosphere beneath TVZ, prior to the establishment of the large andesite stratovolcanoes that presently dominate the skyline at the southern end of TVZ. The relatively low abundance of plagioclase in the phenocryst assemblages hints at high P H 2O and possible involvement of amphibole in the source.

  14. Surface heat flow and CO2 emissions within the Ohaaki hydrothermal field, Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand

    Rissmann, C.; Christenson, B.; Werner, C.; Leybourne, M.; Cole, J.; Gravley, D.


    Carbon dioxide emissions and heat flow have been determined from the Ohaaki hydrothermal field, Taupo Volcanic Zone (TVZ), New Zealand following 20a of production (116MW e). Soil CO2 degassing was quantified with 2663 CO2 flux measurements using the accumulation chamber method, and 2563 soil temperatures were measured and converted to equivalent heat flow (Wm -2) using published soil temperature heat flow functions. Both CO2 flux and heat flow were analysed statistically and then modelled using 500 sequential Gaussian simulations. Forty subsoil CO 2 gas samples were also analysed for stable C isotopes. Following 20a of production, current CO2 emissions equated to 111??6.7T/d. Observed heat flow was 70??6.4MW, compared with a pre-production value of 122MW. This 52MW reduction in surface heat flow is due to production-induced drying up of all alkali-Cl outflows (61.5MW) and steam-heated pools (8.6MW) within the Ohaaki West thermal area (OHW). The drying up of all alkali-Cl outflows at Ohaaki means that the soil zone is now the major natural pathway of heat release from the high-temperature reservoir. On the other hand, a net gain in thermal ground heat flow of 18MW (from 25MW to 43.3??5MW) at OHW is associated with permeability increases resulting from surface unit fracturing by production-induced ground subsidence. The Ohaaki East (OHE) thermal area showed no change in distribution of shallow and deep soil temperature contours despite 20a of production, with an observed heat flow of 26.7??3MW and a CO 2 emission rate of 39??3T/d. The negligible change in the thermal status of the OHE thermal area is attributed to the low permeability of the reservoir beneath this area, which has limited production (mass extraction) and sheltered the area from the pressure decline within the main reservoir. Chemistry suggests that although alkali-Cl outflows once contributed significantly to the natural surface heat flow (~50%) they contributed little (99% of the original CO 2

  15. The geochemistry of lithium-bearing geothermal water, Taupo Volcanic Zone, and shallow fluid processes in a very active silicic volcanic arc

    Dean, A. S.; Hoskin, P. W.; Rudnick, R. L.; Liu, X.; Boseley, C.


    The Li abundances and isotopic systematics of Taupo Volcanic Zone (TVZ) geothermal fluids preserves a record of processes occurring within shallow portions of geothermal reservoirs as well as deeper portions of the arc crust. Understanding Li cycling and isotopic fractionation in TVZ geothermal systems contributes to a more refined understanding of physicochemical processes affecting New Zealand's geothermal resources. A comprehensive dataset of 73 samples was compiled, with samples collected from geothermal surface features (springs, spouters, geysers, etc.) and electric-power industry production wells, collectively representing18 geothermal fields across the breadth and width the TVZ. No comparable dataset of fluid analyses exists. Ion chromatography, AAS, and quadrupole ICP-MS analyses were done for Li, Cl-, SiO2, SO42- K, Na, Ca, Mg, B, Sr and Pb concentrations. Lithium abundance in geothermal fluids from the TVZ have a dataset-wide average of 5.9 mg/L and range 4 μg/L to 29 mg/L. The Li abundance and Li/Cl ratios for geothermal water and steam condensates vary systematically as a result of boiling, mixing, and water/rock reaction. Lithium abundance and Li/Cl ratios are, therefore, indicators of shallow (above 2.5 km) and locally variable reservoir processes. δ7Li analysis of 63 samples was performed at the University of Maryland, College Park. Data quality was controlled by measurement of L-SVEC as a calibration standard and by multiple analysis of selected samples. The average δ7Li value for TVZ geothermal fluids is -0.8%. Most δ7Li values for geothermal water fall within a small range of about -3% to+2% indicating similar processes are causing similar isotopic fractionation throughout the region. Considered together, Li aundances and δ7Li values, in combination with numerical models, indicate possible evolution pathways and water/rock reactions in TVZ geothermal systems. Models based on rocks and surface water analysis indicate that Li cycles and

  16. Lithology and temperature: How key mantle variables control rift volcanism

    Shorttle, O.; Hoggard, M.; Matthews, S.; Maclennan, J.


    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

  17. Temperature and pH control on lipid composition of silica sinters from diverse hot springs in the Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand.

    Kaur, Gurpreet; Mountain, Bruce W; Stott, Matthew B; Hopmans, Ellen C; Pancost, Richard D


    Microbial adaptations to environmental extremes, including high temperature and low pH conditions typical of geothermal settings, are of interest in astrobiology and origin of life investigations. The lipid biomarkers preserved in silica deposits associated with six geothermal areas in the Taupo Volcanic Zone were investigated and variations in lipid composition as a function of temperature and pH were assessed. Lipid analyses reveal highly variable abundances and distributions, reflecting community composition as well as adaptations to extremes of pH and temperature. Biomarker profiles reveal three distinct microbial assemblages across the sites: the first in Champagne Pool and Loop Road, the second in Orakei Korako, Opaheke and Ngatamariki, and the third in Rotokawa. Similar lipid distributions are observed in sinters from physicochemically similar springs. Furthermore, correlation between lipid distributions and geothermal conditions is observed. The ratio of archaeol to bacterial diether abundance, bacterial diether average chain length, degree of GDGT cyclisation and C31 and C32 hopanoic acid indices typically increase with temperature. At lower pH, the ratio of archaeol to bacterial diethers, degree of GDGT cyclisation and C31 and C32 hopanoic acid indices are typically higher. No trends in fatty acid distributions with temperature or pH are evident, likely reflecting overprinting due to population influences.

  18. Mixing and mingling in the evolution of andesite dacite magmas; evidence from co-magmatic plutonic enclaves, Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand

    Cole, J. W.; Gamble, J. A.; Burt, R. M.; Carroll, L. D.; Shelley, D.


    The southeastern side of the Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand is marked by a line of andesite/dacite/low-silica rhyolite complexes. Co-magmatic plutonic enclaves occur within the lavas of the four youngest complexes: White Island, Motuhora (Whale Island), Edgecumbe and Tauhara. The enclaves range from coarse-grained gabbros, diorites, granodiorites and a syenite to finer-grained dolerites and microdiorites. The more mafic types are generally porphyritic with large phenocrysts of plagioclase, usually with extensive sieve textures in the cores and corroded margins. Most of these enclaves, including the coarser-grained plutonic examples, contain glass and many are miarolitic. Diorites and microdiorites/dolerites predominate at White Island, Motuhora and Edgecumbe; many are porphyritic. Enclaves at Tauhara are more variable; those collected from Hipaua Dome include a range from microdiorites to quartz microdiorites and those from Rubbish Tip Dome include microdiorites, a granodiorite, and a syenite. Most enclaves show textural evidence for disequilibrium with multiple populations of plagioclase and pyroxene. They also show considerable textural variation, even within a thin section, with coarse-grained gabbros/diorites intimately mixed with finer-grained dolerites/microdiorites. Geochemically and isotopically, most enclaves have a similar composition with their host lavas, although some have lower silica contents. Enclaves at Motuhora and Tauhara are isotopically more variable, indicating multiple sources and a more complex petrogenesis. Most diorite/microdiorite enclaves are interpreted to represent parts of a crystal mush formed during fractionation of andesite/dacite magma, and entrained during later rise of magma to the surface. The granodiorite from Rubbish Tip Dome, Tauhara, probably represents part of a silicic magma chamber within the crust that fed the host low-silica rhyolite lava dome. Variability within the enclaves indicates the complexity likely to occur

  19. Inter-rifting Deformation in an Extensional Rift Segment; the Northern Volcanic Zone, Iceland

    Pedersen, R.; Masterlark, T.; Sigmundsson, F.; Arnadottir, T.; Feigl, K. L.


    The Northern Volcanic Zone (NVZ) in Iceland is an extensional rift segment, forming a sub-aerial exposure of a part of the Mid-Atlantic ridge. The NVZ is bounded to the south by the Icelandic mantle plume, currently beneath the Vatnajökull ice cap, and to the north by the Tjörnes Fracture zone, a transform zone connecting the offset on- and offshore rift segments of the Mid-Atlantic ridge. Based on geologic and tectonic mapping, the NVZ has been divided into five partly overlapping en-echelon fissure swarms, each with a central main volcanic production area. The two fissure swarms with known activity in historic time are, based on geodetic and seismic data, interpreted to have associated shallow crustal magma chambers. These central volcanoes are furthermore the only with caldera collapses associated, reflecting on the maturity of the systems. A series of newly formed InSAR images of the NVZ, spanning the interval from 1993-2006, have been formed, revealing a complex interplay of several tectonic and magmatic processes. Deformation from two subsiding shallow sources appear at the sites of the known crustal magma chambers. Furthermore, subsidence is occurring at varying degrees within the associated relatively narrow fissure swarms (15-20 km). However, the horizontal plate spreading signal is not confined to the fissure systems, and appears to be distributed over a much wider zone (about 100 km). This wide zone of horizontal spreading has previously been measured with campaign GPS surveys. A broad area of uplift situated about 18 km to the north of one of the subsidence centres (Krafla) suggests a deep seated pressurization source near the crust mantle boundary. Movements on previously unrecognized faults are apparent in the data, correlating well with the location of earthquake epicentres from minor seismic activity. Finally, utilization of geothermal resources in the Krafla area affects the deformation fields created by magmatic and tectonic processes, further

  20. A pulse of mid-Pleistocene rift volcanism in Ethiopia at the dawn of modern humans

    Hutchison, William; Fusillo, Raffaella; Pyle, David M.; Mather, Tamsin A.; Blundy, Jon D.; Biggs, Juliet; Yirgu, Gezahegn; Cohen, Benjamin E.; Brooker, Richard A.; Barfod, Dan N.; Calvert, Andrew T.


    The Ethiopian Rift Valley hosts the longest record of human co-existence with volcanoes on Earth, however, current understanding of the magnitude and timing of large explosive eruptions in this region is poor. Detailed records of volcanism are essential for interpreting the palaeoenvironments occupied by our hominin ancestors; and also for evaluating the volcanic hazards posed to the 10 million people currently living within this active rift zone. Here we use new geochronological evidence to suggest that a 200 km-long segment of rift experienced a major pulse of explosive volcanic activity between 320 and 170 ka. During this period, at least four distinct volcanic centres underwent large-volume (>10 km3) caldera-forming eruptions, and eruptive fluxes were elevated five times above the average eruption rate for the past 700 ka. We propose that such pulses of episodic silicic volcanism would have drastically remodelled landscapes and ecosystems occupied by early hominin populations.

  1. Backarc rifting, constructional volcanism and nascent disorganised spreading in the southern Havre Trough backarc rifts (SW Pacific)

    Wysoczanski, R. J.; Todd, E.; Wright, I. C.; Leybourne, M. I.; Hergt, J. M.; Adam, C.; Mackay, K.


    High resolution multibeam (EM300 and SEABEAM) data of the Southern Havre Trough (SHT), combined with observations and sample collections from the submersible Shinkai6500 and deep-tow camera, are used to develop a model for the evolution and magmatism of this backarc system. The Havre Trough and the associated Kermadec Arc are the product of westward subduction at the Pacific-Australian plate boundary. Detailed studies focus on newly discovered features including a seamount (Saito Seamount) and a deep graben (Ngatoroirangi Rift, > 4000 m water depth floored with a constructional axial volcanic ridge > 5 km in length and in excess of 200 m high), both of which are characterised by pillow and lobate flows estimated at Mass balance modelling indicates a maximum crustal thickness of ~ 11 km to magmatism within deep SHT rifts, we propose that the SHT is in an incipient phase of distributed and "disorganised" oceanic crustal accretion in multiple, ephemeral, and short but deep (> 4000 m) spreading systems. These discontinuous spreading systems are characterised by failed rifts, rift segmentation, and propagation. Successive episodes of magmatic intrusion into thinned faulted arc basement results in defocused asymmetrical accretion. Cross-arc volcanic chains, isolated volcanoes and underlying basement plateaus are interpreted to represent a "cap" of recent extrusives. However, they may also be composed entirely of newly accreted crust and the spatially extensive basement fabric of elongated volcanic ridges may be the surface expression of pervasive dike intrusion that has thoroughly penetrated and essentially replaced the original arc crust with newly accreted intrusives.

  2. Temperature and pH control on lipid composition of silica sinters from diverse hot springs in the Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand

    Kaur, G.; Mountain, B.W.; Stott, M.; Hopmans, E.C.; Pancrost, R.J.


    Microbial adaptations to environmental extremes, including high temperature and low pH conditions typical of geothermal settings, are of interest in astrobiology and origin of life investigations. The lipid biomarkers preserved in silica deposits associated with six geothermal areas in the Taupo Vol

  3. Local stresses, dyke arrest and surface deformation in volcanic edificesand rift zones

    L. S. Brenner


    Full Text Available Field studies indicate that nearly all eruptions in volcanic edifices and rift zones are supplied with magma through fractures (dykes that are opened by magmatic overpressure. While (inferred dyke injections are frequent during unrest periods, volcanic eruptions are, in comparison, infrequent, suggesting that most dykes become arrested at certain depths in the crust, in agreement with field studies. The frequency of dyke arrest can be partly explained by the numerical models presented here which indicate that volcanic edifices and rift zones consisting of rocks of contrasting mechanical properties, such as soft pyroclastic layers and stiff lava flows, commonly develop local stress fields that encourage dyke arrest. During unrest, surface deformation studies are routinely used to infer the geometries of arrested dykes, and some models (using homogeneous, isotropic half-spaces infer large grabens to be induced by such dykes. Our results, however, show that the dyke-tip tensile stresses are normally much greater than the induced surface stresses, making it difficult to explain how a dyke can induce surface stresses in excess of the tensile (or shear strength while the same strength is not exceeded at the (arrested dyke tip. Also, arrested dyke tips in eroded or active rift zones are normally not associated with dyke-induced grabens or normal faults, and some dykes arrested within a few metres of the surface do not generate faults or grabens. The numerical models show that abrupt changes in Young's moduli(stiffnesses, layers with relatively high dyke-normal compressive stresses (stress barriers, and weak horizontal contacts may make the dyke-induced surface tensile stresses too small for significant fault or graben formation to occur in rift zones or volcanic edifices. Also, these small surface stresses may have no simple relation to the dyke geometry or the depth to its tip. Thus, for a layered crust with weak contacts, straightforward

  4. Geochronological and geochemical assessment of Cenozoic volcanism from the Terror Rift region of the West Antarctic Rift System

    Rilling, Sarah E.

    The work presented in this dissertation explains results from three different methods to determine the relation between tectonism and rift-related volcanism in the Terror Rift region of the West Antarctic Rift System (WARS). Alkaline lavas from seven submarine features, Beaufort Island and Franklin Islands, and several locations near Mt Melbourne were dated by 40Ar/39Ar geochronology and analyzed for elemental and isotopic chemical signatures. Each chapter addresses a different aspect of the hypothesis that the presence of volatiles, primarily H2O or CO2, in the magma source has led to anomalously high volumes of magmatism after rift-related decompressional melting rather than requiring an active mantle plume source. Chapter 2 provides the temporal framework, illustrating that the sampled features range in age from 6.7 Ma to 89 ka, post-dating the main Miocene age phase of Terror Rift extension. Chapter 3 illustrates the traditional enriched elemental and isotopic chemical signatures to support the overall homogeneity of these lavas and previously analyzed areas of the WARS. This chapter also provides a new model for the generation of the Pb isotopic signatures consistent with a history of metasomatism in the magma source. Chapter 4 provides an entirely new chemical dataset for the WARS. The first platinum group element (PGE) abundances and extremely unradiogenic Os isotopic signatures of Cenozoic lavas from Antarctica provide the strongest evidence of melting contributions from a lithospheric mantle source. The combined results from these three studies consistently support the original hypothesis of this dissertation. New evidence suggests that WARS related lavas are not related to a mantle plume(s) as previously proposed. Instead, they are generated by passive, decompressional melting of a source, likely a combination of the asthenospheric and lithospheric mantle, which has undergone previous melting events and metasomatism.

  5. Quantifying the morphometric variability of monogenetic cones in volcanic fields: the Virunga Volcanic Province, East African Rift

    Poppe, Sam; Grosse, Pablo; Barette, Florian; Smets, Benoît; Albino, Fabien; Kervyn, François; Kervyn, Matthieu


    Volcanic cone fields are generally made up of tens to hundreds of monogenetic cones, sometimes related to larger polygenetic edifices, which can exhibit a wide range of morphologies and degrees of preservation. The Virunga Volcanic Province (VVP) developed itself in a transfer zone which separates two rift segments (i.e. Edward and Kivu rift) within the western branch of the East-African Rift. As the result of volcanic activity related to this tectonic regime of continental extension, the VVP hosts eight large polygenetic volcanoes, surrounded by over 500 monogenetic cones and eruptive fissures, scattered over the vast VVP lava flow fields. Some cones lack any obvious geo-structural link to a specific Virunga volcano. Using recent high-resolution satellite images (SPOT, Pléiades) and a newly created 5-m-resolution digital elevation model (TanDEM-X), we have mapped and classified all monogenetic cones and eruptive fissures of the VVP. We analysed the orientation of all mapped eruptive fissures and, using the MORVOLC program, we calculated a set of morphometric parameters to highlight systematic spatial variations in size or morphometric ratios of the cones. Based upon morphological indicators, we classified the satellite cones into 4 categories: 1. Simple cones with one closed-rim crater; 2. Breached cones with one open-rim crater; 3. Complex cones with two or more interconnected craters and overlapping cones; 4. Other edifices without a distinguishable crater or cone shape (e.g. spatter mounds and levees along eruptive fissures). The results show that cones are distributed in clusters and along alignments, in some cases parallel with the regional tectonic orientations. Contrasts in the volumes of cones positioned on the rift shoulders compared to those located on the rift valley floor can possibly be attributed to contrasts in continental crust thickness. Furthermore, higher average cone slopes in the East-VVP (Bufumbira zone) and central-VVP cone clusters suggest

  6. Magma genesis of the acidic volcanism in the intra-arc rift zone of the Izu volcanic arc, Japan

    Haraguchi, S.; Tokuyama, H.; Ishii, T.


    The Izu volcanic arc extends over 550 km from the Izu Peninsula, Japan, to the Nishinoshima Trough or Sofugan tectonic line. It is the northernmost segment of the Izu-Bonin-Mariana arc system, which is located at the eastern side of the Philippine Sea Plate. The recent magmatism of the Izu arc is bimodal and characterized by basalt and rhyolite (e.g. Tamura and Tatsumi 2002). In the southern Izu arc, volcanic front from the Aogashima to the Torishima islands is characterized by submarine calderas and acidic volcanisms. The intra-arc rifting, characterized by back-arc depressions, small volcanic knolls and ridges, is active in this region. Volcanic rocks were obtained in 1995 during a research cruise of the R/V MOANA WAVE (Hawaii University, cruise MW9507). Geochemical variation of volcanic rocks and magma genesis was studied by Hochstaedter et al. (2000, 2001), Machida et al (2008), etc. These studies focused magma and mantle dynamics of basaltic volcanism in the wedge mantle. Acidic volcanic rocks were also dredged during the curies MW9507. However, studies of these acidic volcanics were rare. Herein, we present petrographical and chemical analyses of these acidic rocks, and compare these results with those of other acidic rocks in the Izu arc and lab experiments, and propose a model of magma genesis in a context of acidic volcanism. Dredge sites by the cruise MW9507 are 120, and about 50 sites are in the rift zone. Recovered rocks are dominated by the bimodal assemblage of basalt-basaltic andesite and dacite-rhyolite. The most abundant phase is olivine basalt, less than 50 wt% SiO2. Andesites are minor in volume and compositional gap from 56 to 65 wt% SiO2 exists. The across-arc variation of the HFSE contents and ratios, such as Zr/Y and Nb/Zr of rhyolites exhibit depleted in the volcanic front side and enriched in reararc side. This characteristic is similar to basaltic volcanism pointed out by Hochstaedter et al (2000). The petrographical features of rhyolites

  7. Origin of three-armed rifts in volcanic islands: the case of El Hierro (Canary Islands)

    Galindo Jiménez, Inés; Becerril Carretero, Laura; Martí Molist, Joan; Gudmundsson, Agust


    Rifts zones in volcanic oceanic islands are common structures that have been explained through several theories/models. However, despite all these models it is as yet unclear whether it is the intense intrusive activity or the sector collapses that actually control the structural evolution and geometry of oceanic-island rift zones. Here we provide a new hypothesis to explain the origin and characteristics of the feeding system of oceanic-island rift zones based on the analysis of more than 1700 surface, subsurface (water galleries), and submarine structural data from El Hierro (Canary Islands). El Hierro's geological structure is primarily controlled by a three-armed rift-zone, the arms striking NE, WSW and S. Between the rift axes there are three valleys formed during huge landslides: El Golfo, El Julan, and Las Playas. Our results show: (1) a predominant NE-SW strike of structural elements, which coincides with the main regional trend of the Canary Archipelago as a whole; (2) a clear radial strike distribution of structural elements for the whole volcanic edifice (including submarine flanks) with respect to the centre of the island; (3) that the rift zones are mainly subaerial structures and do not propagate through the submarine edifice; (4) that it is only in the NE rift that structures have a general strike similar to that of the rift as a whole, and; (5) that in the W and S rifts there is not clear main direction, showing the structural elements in the W rift a fan distribution coinciding with the general radial pattern in the island as a whole. Based on these data, we suggest that the radial-striking structures reflect comparatively uniform stress fields that operated during the constructive episodes, mainly conditioned by the combination of overburden pressure, gravitational spreading, and magma-induced stresses. By contrast, in the shallower parts of the edifice, that is, the NE-SW, N-S and WNW-ESE-striking structures, reflect local stress fields related

  8. Volcanic rifts bracketing volcanoes: an analogue answer to an old unsolved problem

    Mussetti, Giulio; van Wyk de Vries, Benjamin; Corti, Giacomo; Hagos, Miruts


    It has been observed in Central America that many volcanoes have volcanic alignments and faults at their east and west feet. A quick look at many rifts indicates that this also occurs elsewhere. While this feature has been noted for at least 30 years, no explanation has ever really been convincingly put forward. During analogue experiments on rifting volcanoes we have mixed the presence of a volcanic edifice with an underlying intrusive complex. The models use a rubber sheet that is extended and provides a broad area of extension (in contrast to many moving plate models that have one localised velocity discontinuity). This well suits the situation in many rifts and diffuse strike-slip zones (i.e. Central America and the East African Rift). We have noted the formation of localised extension bracketing the volcano, the location of which depends on the position of the analogue intrusion. Thus, we think we have found the answer to this long standing puzzle. We propose that diffuse extension of a volcano and intrusive complex generates two zones of faulting at the edge of the intrusion along the axis of greatest extensional strain. These serve to create surface faulting and preferential pathways for dykes. This positioning may also create craters aligned along the axis of extension, which is another notable feature of volcanoes in Central America. Paired volcanoes and volcanic uplifts in the Danakil region of Ethiopia may also be a consequence of such a process and lead us to draw some new preliminary cross sections of the Erta Ale volcanic range.

  9. Structure and evolution of the volcanic rift zone at Ponta de São Lourenço, eastern Madeira

    Klügel, Andreas; Schwarz, Stefanie; van den Bogaard, Paul; Hoernle, Kaj A.; Wohlgemuth-Ueberwasser, Cora C.; Köster, Jana J.


    Ponta de São Lourenço is the deeply eroded eastern end of Madeira’s east-west trending rift zone, located near the geometric intersection of the Madeira rift axis with that of the Desertas Islands to the southeast. It dominantly consists of basaltic pyroclastic deposits from Strombolian and phreatomagmatic eruptions, lava flows, and a dike swarm. Main differences compared to highly productive rift zones such as in Hawai’i are a lower dike intensity (50-60 dikes/km) and the lack of a shallow magma reservoir or summit caldera. 40Ar/39Ar age determinations show that volcanic activity at Ponta de São Lourenço lasted from >5.2 to 4 Ma (early Madeira rift phase) and from 2.4 to 0.9 Ma (late Madeira rift phase), with a hiatus dividing the stratigraphy into lower and upper units. Toward the east, the distribution of eruptive centers becomes diffuse, and the rift axis bends to parallel the Desertas ridge. The bending may have resulted from mutual gravitational influence of the Madeira and Desertas volcanic edifices. We propose that Ponta de São Lourenço represents a type example for the interior of a fading rift arm on oceanic volcanoes, with modern analogues being the terminations of the rift zones at La Palma and El Hierro (Canary Islands). There is no evidence for Ponta de São Lourenço representing a former central volcano that interconnected and fed the Madeira and Desertas rifts. Our results suggest a subdivision of volcanic rift zones into (1) a highly productive endmember characterized by a central volcano with a shallow magma chamber feeding one or more rift arms, and (2) a less productive endmember characterized by rifts fed from deep-seated magma reservoirs rather than from a central volcano, as is the case for Ponta de São Lourenço.

  10. Geochemical and 40Ar/39Ar constraints on the evolution of volcanism in the Woodlark Rift, Papua New Guinea

    Catalano, Joseph P.

    The tectonic mechanisms producing Pliocene to active volcanism in eastern Papua New Guinea (PNG) have been debated for decades. In order to assess mechanisms that produce volcanism in the Woodlark Rift, we evaluate the evolution of volcanism in eastern PNG using 40Ar/39Ar thermochronology and whole rock geochemistry. Active volcanism in southeastern Papua New Guinea occurs on the Papuan Peninsula (Mt. Lamington, Mt. Victory and Waiwa), in the Woodlark Rift (Dobu Island, SE Goodenough Island, and Western Fergusson Island), and in the Woodlark Basin. In the Woodlark Basin, seafloor spreading is active and decompression melting of the upper mantle is producing basaltic magmatism. However, the cause of Pliocene and younger volcanism in the Woodlark Rift is controversial. Two hypotheses for the tectonic setting have been proposed to explain Pliocene and younger volcanism in the Woodlark Rift: (1) southward subduction of Solomon Sea lithosphere beneath eastern PNG at the Trobriand Tough and (2) decompression melting of mantle, previously modified by subduction, as the lithosphere undergoes extension associated with the opening of the Woodlark Basin. A comparison of 40Ar/39Ar ages with high field strength element (HFSE) concentrations in primary magmas indicates that HFSE concentrations correlate with age in the Woodlark rift. These data support the hypothesis that Pliocene to active volcanism in the Woodlark Rise and D'Entrecasteaux Islands results from decompression melting of a relict mantle wedge. The subduction zone geochemical signatures (negative HFSE anomalies) in Woodlark Rift lavas younger than 4 m.y. are a relict from older subduction beneath eastern Papua, likely in the middle Miocene. As the lithosphere is extended ahead of the tip of the westward propagating seafloor spreading center in the Woodlark Basin, the composition of volcanism is inherited from prior arc magmatism (via flux melting) and through time evolves toward magmatism associated with a rifting

  11. The Role of Magmatic and Volcanic Loads in Generating Seaward Dipping Reflector Structures on Volcanic Rifted Margins

    Tian, X.; Buck, W. R.


    The largest volcanic constructs on Earth are the seismically imaged seaward dipping reflector (SDR) units found offshore of many rifted continental margins, including a large portion that border the Atlantic Ocean. There is considerable controversy over whether their formation requires large offset (i.e. 10s of km) normal faults or not. Although there is some evidence for faulting in association with SDRs, we here show that a wide range of SDRs structures can be produced solely by volcanic loading. To do this we first derive a simple analytic description of a particular type of volcanic construct. We assume that the increase in density when fluid magma in a dike solidifies provides load at the rift center onto the end of a lithospheric plate. Extrusives are assumed to form flat-topped layers that fill in the flexural depression produced by the load of the solidified dike. The thin-plate flexure approximation is used to calculate the deflections due to the vertical load. This simple model produces structures similar to the observed SDRs. Expressions for the maximum thickness of the volcanic pile and the dip of an individual SDR are derived in terms of the flexure parameter and material densities. Asymmetry of SDR units seen across some conjugate margins can be explained with this model if periodic offsets, or jumps of the center of magmatism are included. In addition, we developed a numerical model of lithospheric extension, magma intrusion and volcanism with a temperature dependent elasto-viscous and brittle-plastic rheology. Results of these 2D cross-sectional models with fixed thermal structure confirm the qualitative predictions of the analytic model without the simplified uniform plate assumption. Preliminary results suggest that the rapid subsidence of SDRs, inferred for some rifted margins, can occur if magma is supplied only to the brittle upper layer and the hot weak lower crust is thinned by stretching. This numerical approach may also allow us to test

  12. Gas Geochemistry of Volcanic and Geothermal Areas in the Kenya Rift: Implications for the Role of Fluids in Continental Rifting

    Lee, H.; Fischer, T. P.; Ranka, L. S.; Onguso, B.; Kanda, I.; Opiyo-Akech, N.; Sharp, Z. D.; Hilton, D. R.; Kattenhorn, S. A.; Muirhead, J.


    The East African Rift (EAR) is an active continental rift and ideal to investigate the processes of rift initiation and the breaking apart of continental lithosphere. Mantle and crust-derived fluids may play a pivotal role in both magmatism and faulting in the EAR. For instance, large quantities of mantle-derived volatiles are emitted at Oldoinyo Lengai volcano [1, 2]. Throughout the EAR, CO2-dominated volatile fluxes are prevalent [3, 4] and often associated with faults (i.e. Rungwe area, Tanzania, [5, 6]). The purpose of this study is to examine the relationship between volcanism, faulting and the volatile compositions, focusing on the central and southern Kenyan and northern Tanzanian section of the EAR. We report our analysis results for samples obtained during a 2013 field season in Kenya. Gases were sampled at fumaroles and geothermal plants in caldera volcanoes (T=83.1-120.2°C) and springs (T=40-79.6°C and pH 8.5-10) located near volcanoes, intra-rift faults, and a transverse fault (the Kordjya fault, a key fluid source in the Magadi rift) by 4N-NaOH solution-filled and empty Giggenbach bottles. Headspace gases were analyzed by a Gas Chromatograph and a Quadrupole Mass Spectrometer at the University of New Mexico. Both N2/Ar and N2/He ratios of all gases (35.38-205.31 and 142.92-564,272, respectively) range between air saturated water (ASW, 40 and ≥150,000) and MORB (100-200 and 40-50). In addition, an N2-Ar-He ternary diagram supports that the gases are produced by two component (mantle and air) mixing. Gases in the empty bottles from volcanoes and springs have N2 (90.88-895.99 mmom/mol), CO2 (2.47-681.21 mmom/mol), CH4 (0-214.78 mmom/mol), O2 (4.47-131.12 mmom/mol), H2 (0-35.78 mmom/mol), Ar (0.15-10.65 mmom/mol), He (0-2.21 mmom/mol), and CO (0-0.08 mmom/mol). Although some of the samples show an atmospheric component, CO2 is a major component in most samples, indicating both volcanoes and springs are emitting CO2. Gases from volcanoes are enriched in

  13. Historical volcanism and the state of stress in the East African Rift System

    Geoffrey Wadge


    Full Text Available Crustal extension at the East African Rift System (EARS should, as a tectonic ideal, involve a stress field in which the direction of minimum horizontal stress is perpendicular to the rift. A volcano in such a setting should produce dykes and fissures parallel to the rift. How closely do the volcanoes of the EARS follow this? We answer this question by studying the 21 volcanoes that have erupted historically (since about 1800 and find that 7 match the (approximate geometrical ideal. At the other 14 volcanoes the orientation of the eruptive fissures/dykes and/or the axes of the host rift segments are oblique to the ideal values. To explain the eruptions at these volcanoes we invoke local (non-plate tectonic variations of the stress field caused by: crustal heterogeneities and anisotropies (dominated by NW structures in the Protoerozoic basement, transfer zone tectonics at the ends of offset rift segments, gravitational loading by the volcanic edifice (typically those with 1-2 km relief and magmatic pressure in central reservoirs. We find that the more oblique volcanoes tend to have large edifices, large eruptive volumes and evolved and mixed magmas capable of explosive behaviour. Nine of the volcanoes have calderas of varying ellipticity, 6 of which are large, reservoir-collapse types mainly elongated across rift (e.g. Kone and 3 are smaller, elongated parallel to the rift and contain active lava lakes (e.g. Erta Ale, suggesting different mechanisms of formation and stress fields. Nyamuragira is the only EARS volcano with enough sufficiently well-documented eruptions to infer its long-term dynamic behaviour. Eruptions within 7 km of the volcano are of relatively short duration (<100 days, but eruptions with more distal fissures tend to have greater obliquity and longer durations, indicating a changing stress field away from the volcano. There were major changes in long-term magma extrusion rates in 1977 (and perhaps in 2002 due to major along-rift

  14. Historical volcanism and the state of stress in the East African Rift System

    Wadge, Geoffrey; Biggs, Juliet; Lloyd, Ryan; Kendall, Michael


    Crustal extension at the East African Rift System (EARS) should, as a tectonic ideal, involve a stress field in which the direction of minimum horizontal stress is perpendicular to the rift. A volcano in such a setting should produce dykes and fissures parallel to the rift. How closely do the volcanoes of the EARS follow this? We answer this question by studying the 21 volcanoes that have erupted historically (since about 1800) and find that 7 match the (approximate) geometrical ideal. At the other 14 volcanoes the orientation of the eruptive fissures/dykes and/or the axes of the host rift segments are oblique to the ideal values. To explain the eruptions at these volcanoes we invoke local (non-plate tectonic) variations of the stress field caused by: crustal heterogeneities and anisotropies (dominated by NW structures in the Protoerozoic basement), transfer zone tectonics at the ends of offset rift segments, gravitational loading by the volcanic edifice (typically those with 1-2 km relief) and magmatic pressure in central reservoirs. We find that the more oblique volcanoes tend to have large edifices, large eruptive volumes and evolved and mixed magmas capable of explosive behaviour. Nine of the volcanoes have calderas of varying ellipticity, 6 of which are large, reservoir-collapse types mainly elongated across rift (e.g. Kone) and 3 are smaller, elongated parallel to the rift and contain active lava lakes (e.g. Erta Ale), suggesting different mechanisms of formation and stress fields. Nyamuragira is the only EARS volcano with enough sufficiently well-documented eruptions to infer its long-term dynamic behaviour. Eruptions within 7 km of the volcano are of relatively short duration (<100 days), but eruptions with more distal fissures tend to have greater obliquity and longer durations, indicating a changing stress field away from the volcano. There were major changes in long-term magma extrusion rates in 1977 (and perhaps in 2002) due to major along-rift dyking

  15. Formation of the volcanic rifted margin off Argentina/Uruguay, South Atlantic

    Franke, D.; Reichert, C.; Ladage, S.; Schnabel, M.; Schreckenberger, B.; Neben, S.; Hinz, K.


    The Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources (BGR), Germany has investigated the passive continental margins offshore Argentina and Uruguay since the early 90ies. Numerous marine geophysical surveys have meanwhile established a databasis of more than 25.000 km of regional multi-channel reflection seismic lines, accompanied with magnetic and gravity profiles. These data document that the Early Cretaceous South Atlantic continental break-up and initial sea-floor spreading were accompanied by large-scale, transient volcanism emplacing voluminous extrusives, manifested in the seismic data by huge wedges of seaward dipping reflectors (SDRs). These deeply buried and 60-120 km wide SDRs were emplaced episodically as suggested by at least three superimposed SDRS units. Distinct along-margin variations in the architecture, volume, and width of the SDRs wedges correlate with large scale margin segmentation. We identify at least four domains bounded by the Falkland Fracture Zone/Falkland Transfer, the Colorado Transfer, the Ventana Transfer and the Salado Transfer. The individual transfer zones may have acted as barriers for propagating rifts during the SDR emplacement phase, selectively directing rift segments in left stepping patterns along the western South Atlantic margin. The rift segments are offset systematically in a left stepping pattern along the western South Atlantic margin. Albeit we found extensive variations in the architecture, style and extent of the seaward dipping reflector sequences a general trend is that the largest volumes are emplaced close to the proposed transfer zones and the width of the SDRs wedges decreases northward within the individual margin segments. The different volcano-tectonic architectures of the margin segments and the distribution of the extruded magmas indicates that the emplacement of the volcanic material was controlled by the tectonic setting and the pre-rift lithosphere configuration within individual margin

  16. Evolution of the East African rift: Drip magmatism, lithospheric thinning and mafic volcanism

    Furman, Tanya; Nelson, Wendy R.; Elkins-Tanton, Linda T.


    The origin of the Ethiopian-Yemeni Oligocene flood basalt province is widely interpreted as representing mafic volcanism associated with the Afar mantle plume head, with minor contributions from the lithospheric mantle. We reinterpret the geochemical compositions of primitive Oligocene basalts and picrites as requiring a far more significant contribution from the metasomatized subcontinental lithospheric mantle than has been recognized previously. This region displays the fingerprints of mantle plume and lithospheric drip magmatism as predicted from numerical models. Metasomatized mantle lithosphere is not dynamically stable, and heating above the upwelling Afar plume caused metasomatized lithosphere with a significant pyroxenite component to drip into the asthenosphere and melt. This process generated the HT2 lavas observed today in restricted portions of Ethiopia and Yemen now separated by the Red Sea, suggesting a fundamental link between drip magmatism and the onset of rifting. Coeval HT1 and LT lavas, in contrast, were not generated by drip melting but instead originated from shallower, dominantly anhydrous peridotite. Looking more broadly across the East African Rift System in time and space, geochemical data support small volume volcanic events in Turkana (N. Kenya), Chyulu Hills (S. Kenya) and the Virunga province (Western Rift) to be derived ultimately from drip melting. The removal of the gravitationally unstable, metasomatized portion of the subcontinental lithospheric mantle via dripping is correlated in each case with periods of rapid uplift. The combined influence of thermo-mechanically thinned lithosphere and the Afar plume together thus controlled the locus of continental rift initiation between Africa and Arabia and provide dynamic support for the Ethiopian plateau.

  17. The distribution of volcanism in the Beta-Atla-Themis region of Venus: Its relationship to rifting and implications for global tectonic regimes

    Airey, M. W.; Mather, T. A.; Pyle, D. M.; Ghail, R. C.


    A new analysis of the spatial relationships between volcanic features and rifts on Venus provides new constraints on models of planetary evolution. We developed a new database of volcanic features for the Beta-Atla-Themis (BAT) region and used nearest neighbor measurements to determine relationships between different types of volcanic features and the rifts. Nearest neighbor analysis shows that all the dome-type and corona-type subpopulations tend to cluster. Rift associations were inferred from the deviation of a feature's population distribution (as a function of distance from rift) from that of a random population. Dome-type features in general have no discernible relationship with rifts. Most corona-type features have a strong association with rifts, with intermediate and large volcanoes also tending to occur close to or on rifts. Shield fields, on the other hand, tend to occur away from rifts. Our new evidence supports classifications of rifts on Venus into different types, possibly by age, with a shift from globally dispersed (more uniform) volcanism toward the more rift-focused distribution, which suggests a shift in tectonic regime. Our observations are consistent with recent models proposing the evolution of Venus from a stagnant lid regime to a subcrustal spreading regime. We also present evidence for a failed rift on Venus and note that this process may be analogous, albeit on a larger scale, to a proposed model for the evolution of the East African rift system.

  18. Volcanic evolution of an active magmatic rift segment on a 100 Kyr timescale: exposure dating of lavas from the Manda Hararo/Dabbahu segment of the Afar Rift

    Medynski, S.; Williams, A.; Pik, R.; Burnard, P.; Vye, C.; France, L.; Ayalew, D.; Yirgu, G.


    In the Afar depression (Ethiopia), extension is already organised along rift segments which morphologically resemble oceanic rifts. Segmentation here results from interactions between dyke injection and volcanism, as observed during the well documented 2005 event on the Dabbahu rift segment. During this tectono-volcanic crisis, a megadyke was injected, followed by 12 subsequent dike intrusions, sometimes associated with fissure flow eruptions. Despite the accurate surveying of the magmatic and tectonic interplay during this event via remote sensing techniques, there is a lack of data on timescales of 1 to 100 kyr, the period over which the main morphology of a rift is acquired. The Dabbahu rift segment represents an ideal natural laboratory to study the evolution of rift morphology as a response to volcanic and tectonic influences. It is possible to constrain the timing of fault growth relative to the infilling of the rift axial depression by lava flows, and to assess the influence of the different magma bodies involved in lava production along the rift-segment. We use cosmogenic nuclides (3He) to determine the ages of young (cartography (Landsat, ASTER and SPOT imagery), the rift geomorphology can be linked to the magmatic and tectonic history defined by surface exposure dating. The results show that over the last 100 ka the Northern part of the Dabbahu segment was supplied by two different magma reservoirs which can be identified based on their distinctive chemistries. The main reservoir is located beneath Dabbahu volcano, and has been supplied with magma for at least 72 ka. This magmatic centre supplies magma to most of the northern third of the rift segment. The second reservoir is located further south, on the axis, close to the current mid-segment magma chamber, which was responsible for the 2005 rifting episode. This second magmatic centre supplies magma to the remaining 2/3 of the segment, but scarcely impacts its Northern termination (where the Dabbahu

  19. Creating global comparative analyses of tectonic rifts, monogenetic volcanism and inverted relief

    van Wyk de Vries, Benjamin


    I have been all around the world, and to other planets and have travelled from the present to the Archaean and back to seek out the most significant tectonic rifts, monogenetic volcanoes and examples of inverted relief. I have done this to provide a broad foundation of the comparative analysis for the Chaîne des Puys - Limagne fault nomination to UNESCO world Heritage. This would have been an impossible task, if not for the cooperation of the scientific community and for Google Earth, Google Maps and academic search engines. In preparing global comparisons of geological features, these quite recently developed tools provide a powerful way to find and describe geological features. The ability to do scientific crowd sourcing, rapidly discussing with colleagues about features, allows large numbers of areas to be checked and the open GIS tools (such as Google Earth) allow a standardised description. Search engines also allow the literature on areas to be checked and compared. I will present a comparative study of rifts of the world, monogenetic volcanic field and inverted relief, integrated to analyse the full geological system represented by the Chaîne des Puys - Limagne fault. The analysis confirms that the site is an exceptional example of the first steps of continental drift in a mountain rift setting, and that this is necessarily seen through the combined landscape of tectonic, volcanic and geomorphic features. The analysis goes further to deepen the understanding of geological systems and stresses the need for more study on geological heritage using such a global and broad systems approach.

  20. The Temporal and Spatial Association of Faulting and Volcanism in the Cerros del Rio Volcanic Field - Rio Grande Rift, USA

    Thompson, R. A.; Hudson, M. R.; Minor, S. A.; McIntosh, W. C.; Miggins, D. P.; Grauch, V.


    The Plio-Pleistocene Cerros del Rio volcanic field (CdRVF) in northern New Mexico is one of the largest ( greater than 700 square kilometers) predominantly basaltic and andesitic volcanic centers of the Rio Grande rift; it records the late-stage, volcano-tectonic evolution of the SW part of the Espanola Basin. The CdRVF reflects both regional proclivity toward Pliocene basaltic volcanism following protracted Neogene extensional tectonism and localized eruptive response to migration of basin- bounding faults. Approximately 180 cubic kilometers of flat lying to gently dipping basalt, andesite, and minor dacite lava flows and pyroclastic deposits of the CdRVF were erupted from more than 50 exposed vents between 2.8 Ma and 1.14 Ma. Subsurface interpretations of drill hole data and incised canyon exposures of the Rio Grande show that volcanic deposits are interbedded with Santa Fe Group sediments deposited in actively subsiding sub-basins of the southernmost Espanola Basin. Major basin-bounding faults in this area strike north to northwest, dip basinward, and have mostly dip-slip and subordinate strike-slip displacement. Although major basin-bounding faults were active prior to the onset of volcanism in the CdRVF, protracted extension resulted in a westward migration of graben-bounding faults. Phases of coeval volcanism at 2.8-2.6 Ma, 2.5-2.2 Ma, and 1.5-1.1 Ma, decreased in eruptive volume through time and are delineated on the basis of mapped stratigraphy, argon geochronology, paleomagnetic and aeromagnetic properties, and record a syntectonic westward migration of eruptive centers. The alignment of vent areas with mapped faults strongly suggests deep magmatic sources utilized local structures as conduits (i.e. faults and fractures developed in response to regional stress). However, some near-surface feeder dikes associated with eroded cinder cones record orientations that are not typically correlative with regional fault patterns suggesting near-surface conduits are

  1. Volcanic activities in the Southern part of East African rift initiation: Melilitites and nephelinites from the Manyara Basin (North Tanzania rift axis)

    Baudouin, Celine; Parat, Fleurice; Tiberi, Christel; Gautier, Stéphanie; Peyrat, Sophie


    The East African Rift exposes different stages of plate boundary extension, from the initiation of the rift (North (N) Tanzania) to oceanic accretion (Afar). The N Tanzania rift-axis (north-south (S) trend) is divided into 2 different volcanic and seismic activities: (1) the Natron basin (N) with shallow seismicity and intense volcanism and (2) the Manyara basin (S) with deep crustal earthquakes and sparse volcanism. The Natron basin is characterized by extinct volcanoes (2 Ma-0.75 Ma) and active volcano (Oldoinyo Lengai) and a link between seismicity and volcanism has been observed during the Oldoinyo Lengai crisis in 2007. In the S part of the N Tanzanian rift, volcanoes erupted in the Manyara basin between 0.4 and 0.9 Ma. In this study, we used geochemical signature of magmas and deep fluids that percolate into the lithosphere beneath Manyara basin, to define the compositions of magmas and fluids at depth beneath the S part of the N Tanzania rift, compare to the Natron basin and place constrain on the volcanic and seismic activities. The Manyara basin has distinct volcanic activities with mafic magmas as melilitites (Labait) and Mg-nephelinites (carbonatite, Kwaraha), and more differentiated magmas as Mg-poor nephelinites (Hanang). Melilitites and Mg-nephelinites are primary magmas with olivine, clinopyroxene (cpx), and phlogopite recording high-pressure crystallization environment, (melilitites >4 GPa and Mg-nephelinites>1 GPa) with high volatile contents (whole rock: 0.7-4.6 wt% CO2, 0.1-0.3 wt% F and 0.1 wt% Cl). FTIR analyses of olivine constrained the water content of Labait and Kwaraha magmas at 0.1 and 0.4 wt% H2O, respectively. Geochemical modelling suggests that mafic magmas result from a low degree of partial melting (1-2%) of a peridotitic source with garnet and phlogopite (high Tb/Yb (>0.6) and Rb/Sr (0.03-0.12) ratio). Mg-poor nephelinites from Hanang volcano crystallized cpx, Ti-garnet, and nepheline as phenocrysts. Magmas result from fractional

  2. The Cenozoic volcanism in the Kivu rift: Assessment of the tectonic setting, geochemistry, and geochronology of the volcanic activity in the South-Kivu and Virunga regions

    Pouclet, A.; Bellon, H.; Bram, K.


    The Kivu rift is part of the western branch of the East African Rift system. From Lake Tanganyika to Lake Albert, the Kivu rift is set in a succession of Precambrian zones of weakness trending NW-SE, NNE-SSW and NE-SW. At the NW to NNE turn of the rift direction in the Lake Kivu area, the inherited faults are crosscut by newly born N-S fractures which developed during the late Cenozoic rifting and controlled the volcanic activity. From Lake Kivu to Lake Edward, the N-S faults show a right-lateral en echelon pattern. Development of tension gashes in the Virunga area indicates a clockwise rotation of the constraint linked to dextral oblique motion of crustal blocks. The extensional direction was W-E in the Mio-Pliocene and ENE-WSW in the Pleistocene to present time. The volcanic rocks are assigned to three groups: (1) tholeiites and sodic alkali basalts in the South-Kivu, (2) sodic basalts and nephelinites in the northern Lake Kivu and western Virunga, and (3) potassic basanites and potassic nephelinites in the Virunga area. South-Kivu magmas were generated by melting of spinel + garnet lherzolite from two sources: an enriched lithospheric source and a less enriched mixed lithospheric and asthenospheric source. The latter source was implied in the genesis of the tholeiitic lavas at the beginning of the South-Kivu tectono-volcanic activity, in relationships with asthenosphere upwelling. The ensuing outpouring of alkaline basaltic lavas from the lithospheric source attests for the abortion of the asthenospheric contribution and a change of the rifting process. The sodic nephelinites of the northern Lake Kivu originated from low partial melting of garnet peridotite of the sub-continental mantle due to pressure release during swell initiation. The Virunga potassic magmas resulted from the melting of garnet peridotite with an increasing degree of melting from nephelinite to basanite. They originated from a lithospheric source enriched in both K and Rb, suggesting the

  3. Post-rift volcanic structures of the Pernambuco Plateau, northeastern Brazil

    Buarque, Bruno V.; Barbosa, José A.; Magalhães, José R. G.; Cruz Oliveira, Jefferson T.; Filho, Osvaldo J. Correia


    The Pernambuco marginal basin is located on the eastern continental margin of northeastern Brazil, covers an area of 20,800 km2, and represents one of the most prominent frontiers for deep water oil and gas exploration off the Brazilian coast. The onshore region of this basin was highly affected by extrusive and intrusive magmatism during the Upper Albian, and the relation of that event with the volcanic structures observed in the offshore sector has not been thoroughly characterized to date. This study aims to characterize the major extrusive and intrusive volcanic structures of the offshore portion of this basin, which is dominated by the Pernambuco Plateau, and its stratigraphic relations. A set of 143 2D multichannel seismic sections that cover the Pernambuco Plateau region are used to interpret the major tectono-stratigraphic sequences and describe the distribution of volcanoes, sills, vent complexes and related volcaniclastic sequences. The interpretations are supported by aeromagnetic and gravimetric geophysical surveys. Volcanoes are classified into two groups that differ in terms of their morphology: shield-like structures and cone-shaped volcanic structures. Sill intrusions are mainly identified beneath the volcanic structures and are characterized by high-amplitude reflectors with short extensions and abrupt terminations. Volcaniclastic sequences are found adjacent to the volcanoes and are characterized by high-amplitude, disrupted reflections with local chaotic configurations. Vent complexes are classified on the basis of their morphologies as either eye-shaped or crater-shaped. The volcanic features identified within the available seismic dataset are concentrated in two main areas: in the centre of the plateau and near its northeastern border. These two regions are host basement outer highs and are surrounded by hyper-extended continental crust, which forms the plateau itself. The extrusive and intrusive features described in the offshore region were

  4. 40Ar-39Ar Age Constraints on Volcanism and Tectonism in the Terror Rift of the Ross Sea, Antarctica


    Volcanic sills and dikes inferred from seismic reflection profiles and geophysical studies of the Ross Sea are thought to be related to the rift basins in the region, and their emplacement to be coeval with extension. However, lack of precise geochronology in the Terror Rift of the Ross Sea region has left these inferred relationships poorly constrained and has hindered neotectonic studies, because of the large temporal gaps between seismic reflectors of known ages. New 40Ar/39Ar geochronology presented here for submarine volcanic rocks provides better age constraints for neotectonic interpretations within the Terror Rift. Several samples from seamounts yielded young ages between 156 ± 21 and 122 ± 26 Ka. These ages support interpretations that extension within the Terror Rift was active at least through the Pleistocene. Three evenly spaced samples from the lowermost 100 m of Franklin Island range in age from 3.28 ± 0.04 to 3.73 ± 0.05 Ma. These age determinations demonstrate that construction of a small volcanic edifice such as Franklin Island took at least several hundred thousand years, and therefore that much larger ones in the Erebus Volcanic Province are likely to have taken considerably longer than previously inferred. This warrants caution in applying a limited number of age determinations to define the absolute ages of events in the Ross Sea region

  5. Arc-rift transition volcanism in the Volcanic Hills, Jacumba and Coyote Mountains, San Diego and Imperial Counties, california

    Fisch, Gregory Zane

    Neogene volcanism associated with the subduction of the Farallon-Pacific spreading center and the transition from a subduction zone to a rift zone has been studied extensively in Baja, California, Mexico. One of the main goals of these studies was to find a geochemical correlation with slab windows that may have formed during that complicated transition. While workers have been able to find distinct geochemical signatures in samples from Baja California, none have shown statistically significant correlation with samples from southern California that are thought to be related to the same arc-rift transition events. All of the basaltic samples from this study of southern California rocks have prominent Nb depletions typical of island-arc subduction-related volcanism, in contrast to the chemistry of Baja California volcanics that have trace element patterns typical of synrift related volcanism. The work done by previous investigators has been additionally complicated due to each investigator's choice of important ratios or patterns, which bears little, if any, correlation with work done by others working in the same area. For example, Martin-Barajas et al. (1995) use K/Rb ratios in their study of the Puertocitos Volcanic Province, while Castillo (2008) argues that Sr/Y vs. Y is a better indicator of petrogenetic processes. Little petrologic work has been done on Neogene volcanic rocks in the Imperial Valley and eastern San Diego County region of Southern California. This thesis combines new research with that of previous workers and attempts to establish a better understanding of the processes involved with the transition volcanism. Prior work documents significant differences in the geochemistry between some of these areas, especially those in close proximity to each other (e.g. the Volcanic Hills and Coyote Mountains). These differences were thought to be largely the result different magmatic sources. The potential of finding two differing magma types in close

  6. New age constraints on the timing of volcanism in central Afar, in the presence of propagating rifts

    Lahitte, Pierre; Gillot, Pierre-Yves; Kidane, Tesfaye; Courtillot, Vincent; Bekele, Abebe


    We investigate the relationship between rift propagation and volcanism in the Afar Depression in the last 4 Myr. Potassium-argon and thermoluminescence dating allow detailed reconstruction of the temporal evolution of volcanism. Volcanic activity is almost continuous since 3.5 Ma, with intervals characterized by more intense activity, especially around 2 Ma. Spatial distribution of ages reveals that Stratoid Series volcanism migrated northward along a 200-km trend between 3 and 1 Ma, at about 10 cm/yr, linked to northward propagation of the Gulf of Aden Ridge, after it had cut across the Danakil horst at 4 Ma. Our work underlines the role of rhyolitic volcanism in initiation of rifting. Acid volcanoes, initially formed near the axes of extensional zones, have been subsequently dissected and are presently located on both sides of active rift segments. These lavas were the first to be erupted in areas of low extensional strain and were followed by basaltic lavas as extension increased. Differentiated volcanoes acted as zones of local weakness and guided localization of fractures, then leading to fissural magmatism. This regional-scale, composite style of rifting, including volcanic and tectonic components, can be compared to the large-scale continental breakup process itself. Deformation occurs through propagation of faults and fissures under a regional stress field. These become localized because of weakening of the crust (or lithosphere) due to emplacement of magmas, under the influence of a plume in the large-scale case, or of silicic centers linked to magma chambers in the regional-scale case.

  7. Andesite petrogenesis in a hybrid arc-rift setting: the Western Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt

    Gómez-Tuena, A.; Vázquez-Duarte, A.; Díaz-Bravo, B.; Mori, L.


    The western sector of the Mexican subduction zone is characterized by the steep subduction of one of the youngest slabs on the planet (Rivera plate), and by the existence of a continental rift at ~230 km to the north from the trench (the so-called Tepic-Zacoalco rift, TZR), under which the subducted slab is either extremely deep or even absent (>250 km). The volcanic front is located at ~170 km from the trench and contains abundant potassic-alkaline lamprophyres with strong subduction (Ba/Ta= 1600-6000) and garnet signatures (Gd/Yb= 2-8), that have been recently interpreted as influenced by deep K2O-rich slab melts or supercritical fluids (Gómez-Tuena et al., 2011, GCA). In contrast, the most mafic rocks within the TZR are high-Nb, intraplate-like basalts that appear to derive from low extents of melting of a dryer (Ba/Ta= 800-60) and shallower (Gd/Yb= 2-2.5) mantle source. Even though a simple transition from an arc environment to an extensional tectonic regime is apparent when only the most primitive volcanic rocks are taken into account, the scenario becomes more complicated since at least five stratovolcanoes have been erupting typical arc andesites within the TZR over the last million years (San Juan, Sanganguey, Tepetiltic, Ceboruco and Tequila). Surprisingly, true calc-alkaline basalts that could be parental to andesites have not been found, indicating that andesites may have a direct mantle origin. Indeed, mayor and trace element compositions of volcanic rocks from western Mexico arrange in discrete suites with linear trends that are indicative of mixing, but they form sub-parallel arrays that do not converge to a common primitive basaltic melt, and often follow diverging trends in trace element-ratio plots. Melt-crust interactions likely occurred during magma ascent, since the volcanic rocks frequently include xenoliths and disequilibrium textures, but correlations among isotopic compositions and indexes of fractionation are not clearly observed in the

  8. Rifting, volcanism, and magma genesis at the northern end of the Danakil Depression: The Alid volcanic center of Eritrea (Invited)

    Lowenstern, J. B.; Clynne, M. A.; Duffield, W. A.; Smith, J. G.; Woldegiorgis, L.


    The Alid volcanic center, Eritrea, is a structural dome formed by subvolcanic intrusion of pyroxene-bearing rhyolite, subsequently erupted as pumice and lava, during the period 40,000 to 15,000 years ago. The northern Danakil Depression is thought to be the most recently developed part of the Afar, and represents an active continental rift subparallel to the Red Sea spreading center. The location of Alid may be controlled by the intersection of the structural grain of the NE trending Senafe-Alid lineament with the NW trending Danakil Depression. Our work began as a geothermal assessment (Duffield et al., 1997, USGS Open-file 97-291) that found evidence for 300 meters of vertical offset of early Pleistocene basalt flows over the past 1.1 million years. Structural uplift at Alid reveals Proterozoic metamorphic basement rocks overlain by Quaternary marine sediments including siltstone, and sandstones interbedded with pillow lavas and hyaloclastites. These units are overlain by subaerial amphibole-bearing rhyolites (dated at ~200 ka), basalts, and andesites that were deposited on a relatively flat surface and before significant growth of a large volcanic edifice. About 1 km of structural uplift of the marine sediments began 40 ka when pyroxene-bearing rhyolitic magma intruded close to the surface. Uplift was accompanied by contemporaneous eruptions of pumice falls and more common obsidian domes and lava flows over the next 20,000 years. Uplift apparently ceased after eruption of pyroclastic flows and vent-clogging lava about 15 ka. The pumice deposits contain cognate xenoliths of granophyric pyroxene-granite (Lowenstern et al., 1997, J. Petrol. 38:1707). Our geochronology of the uplift is consistent with the idea that growth of the Alid volcanic center played a role in isolating the southern Danakil Depression from the Red Sea, helping to initiate dessication of the rift and producing the young evaporites found today at Baddha and further south at Dallol. U

  9. Volcanic margin formation and Mesozoic rift propagators in the Cuvier Abyssal Plain off Western Australia

    Mihut, Dona; Müller, R. Dietmar


    The western margin of Australia is characterized by synrift and postrift magmatism which is not well understood. A joint interpretation of magnetic anomaly, satellite gravity anomaly and seismic data from the Cuvier Abyssal Plain and margin shows that the breakup between India and Australia started circa 136 Ma (M14) and was followed by two rift propagation events which transferred portions of the Indian Plate to the Australian Plate. Post breakup magmatism continued with the emplacement of the Wallaby and Zenith plateaus (˜17-18 km thick at their centers) along a transform margin. Two narrow magmatic edifices adjacent to the Wallaby Plateau (Sonne and Sonja ridges) represent an extinct ridge and a pseudofault, respectively. They formed by excess volcanism, probably by lateral migration of buoyant melt along upside-down crustal drainage channels from the melt source underneath the Wallaby Plateau. In a mantle plume scenario a small plume (˜400 km diameter) located underneath the rift could have locally uplifted the Bernier Platform and Exmouth Sub-basin in the Early Cretaceous and left a track consistent with the azimuth of the Wallaby and Zenith plateaus. In this case, ridge-plume interaction would have caused two consecutive ridge propagation events towards the plume while the ridge moved away from the hotspot. The abrupt end of the hotspot track west of the Zenith Plateau would be a consequence of the accelerating south-eastward motion of the spreading ridge relative to the mantle after 120 Ma, leaving the mantle plume underneath the Indian Plate. An alternative nonmantle-plume scenario is based on the observation that between breakup and chron M0 (˜120 Ma) the ocean crust in the southern Cuvier Abyssal Plain was formed while the spreading ridge abutted Indian continental crust. Small-scale convection may have been initiated during rifting in the Early Cretaceous and maintained until the Wallaby-Zenith ridge-transform intersection passed by the eastern edge

  10. A quantitative geomorphological approach to constraining the volcanic and tectonic evolution of the active Dabbahu rift segment, Afar, Ethiopia.

    Medynski, Sarah; Pik, Raphaël; Burnard, Peter; Vye-Brown, Charlotte; Blard, Pierre-Henri; France, Lydéric; Dumont, Stéphanie; Grandin, Raphaël; Schimmelpfennig, Irene; Benedetti, Lucilla; Ayalew, Dereje; Yirgu, Gezahegn


    In the Afar depression (Ethiopia), extension is organised along rift segments that morphologically resemble oceanic rifts. Segmentation results from interactions between dyke injection and volcanism, as observed during the well-documented 2005 rifting event on the Dabbahu rift segment. This tectono-volcanic crisis was observed in detail via remote sensing techniques, providing invaluable information on the present-day tectonic - magmatic interplay during a sequence of dyke intrusions. However, lack of data remains on timescales of 1 to 100 kyr, the period over which the main morphology of the rift is acquired. The Dabbahu rift segment represents an ideal natural laboratory to study the evolution of rift morphology as a response to volcanic and tectonic influences. We use cosmogenic nuclides (3He and 36Cl) to determine the ages of young (<100 kyr) lava flows and to date the initiation and movement of fault scarps, which cut the lavas. Where possible, we analysed vertical profiles along fault scarps, in an attempt to distinguish individual tectonic events that offset the scarp, estimate their amplitudes and date the recurrence intervals. These geochronological constraints, combined with major & trace element compositions, field mapping and digital mapping (Landsat, ASTER and SPOT imagery), provide valuable insights on the magmatic and tectonic history of the segment. The results show that over the last 100 ka, the northern part of the Dabbahu segment was supplied by at least two different magma reservoirs, which can be identified from their distinctive chemistries. The main reservoir is located beneath Dabbahu volcano at the northern tip of the rift segment, and has been supplied with magma for at least 72 ka. The second reservoir is located further south on the rift axis and corresponds to the current mid-segment magma chamber, which was responsible for the 2005 rifting episode. Two magmatic cycles linked to the Dabbahu magma chamber were recorded, lasting 20-30 kyr

  11. The 2011-2012 unrest at Santorini rift: Stress interaction between active faulting and volcanism

    Feuillet, Nathalie


    Santorini, active normal faulting controls the emission of volcanic products. Such geometry has implication on seismic activity around the plumbing system during unrest. Static Coulomb stress changes induced by the 2011-2012 inflation within a preexisting NW-SE extensional regional stress field, compatible with fault geometry, increased by more than 0.5 MPa in an ellipsoid-shaped zone beneath the Minoan caldera where almost all earthquakes (96%) have occurred since beginning of unrest. Magmatic processes perturb the regional stress in the caldera where strike-slip rather than normal faulting along NE-SW striking planes are expected. The inflation may have also promoted more distant moderate earthquakes on neighboring faults as the M > 5 January 2012, south of Christiania. Santorini belongs to a set of en echelon NE-SW striking rifts (Milos, Nysiros) oblique to the Aegean arc that may have initiated in the Quaternary due to propagation of the North Anatolian fault into the Southern Aegean Sea.

  12. Tectonic, volcanic and human activity ground deformation signals detected by multitemporal InSAR techniques in the Colima Volcanic Complex (Mexico) rift

    Brunori, C.; Norini, G.; Bignami, C.; Groppelli, G.; Zucca, F.; Stramondo, S.; Capra, L.; Cabral-Cano, E.


    The evolution of volcanoes is strictly related with their substratum and the regional tectonics. The link among morphology, geology and structure of volcanic edifices and the geological-structural characteristics of the basement is important to understand hazardous phenomena as flank eruptions and lateral collapses of volcanoes. The Colima Rift is an active regional structure, N-S oriented and more than 100 km long and 10 wide. This rift is filled by a ~1 km-thick sequence of quaternary lacustrine sediments, alluvium, and colluvium, mostly underling the about 3000 m thick volcanic pile of the Colima Volcanic Complex (CVC). In addition to the regional structures curved faults, roughly E-W oriented, are observed on the CVC edifice due to the spreading of the volcano moving southward on the weak basement. So in the CVC edifice and surrounding area we can observe the interaction of regional structures and volcanic ones due to the gravitational loading of the volcanic edifice on the weak substratum of the graben. To measure displacements due to magma movement at depth and interaction of regional structures and volcanic ones, SAR interferometry has proven to be a reliable method; however, andesitic stratovolcanoes like the CVC indeed,remain difficult to survey using this technique. The main causes are their specific geometry (steep topography), which induces strong tropospheric artefacts, environmental conditions (e.g., mainly vegetation, ash and/or snow cover), leading to a loss of coherency. In this work we try to detect deformations phenomena for the wide CVC using a robust multitemporal InSAR approach Differential Synthetic Aperture Radar Interferometry (DInSAR). We apply the Hooper (2008) DInSAR algorithm (StamPS/MTI) both to ENVISAT ASARr images acquired from 1993 to 2007 and to ALOS PALSAR (datasets from 2006 to 2010) in order to determine the deformation patterns in the CVC.

  13. Sr isotope geochemistry of megacrysts from continental rift and converging plate margin alkaline volcanism in South Italy

    Vollmer, R.; Johnston, Kate; Ghiara, M. R.; Lirer, L.; Munno, Rosalba


    Mineral phases of two-clinopyroxene alkaline lavas from continental rift and plate margin volcanism in South Italy have been analyzed for their Sr isotopic composition and concentration. Sr isotope disequilibria are observed between megacrysts and groundmass in all seven analysed Campanian potassic lavas, but not in a lava from Stromboli, a volcano in the Eolian arc. Variations in 87Sr/ 86Sr ratios for different phases in the lavas are likely to reflect primary Sr isotope variations in the primitive lavas (rather than crustal contamination effects). It is suggested that the observed mineral disequilibria point to the intimate association of a range of primary magmas and small-scale source heterogeneities for the Campanian volcanism. The lack of mineral disequilibria for Stromboli suggests that here source heterogeneities are absent or else exist on a very much larger scale. It is therefore unlikely that there is any genetic connection between these two types of alkaline volcanism in South Italy.

  14. Relationships between Basic and Silicic Magmatism in Continental Rift Settings: A Petrogeochemical Study of Carboniferous Post-collisional Rift Silicic Volcanics in Tianshan, NW China


    Petrogeochemical data are reported for silicic volcanic rocks from the Tianshan Carboniferous rift, with the aim of discussing the petrogenesis of silicic magmas. Incompatible element vs. incompatible element diagrams display smooth positive trends for the Tianshan Carboniferous rift-related volcanic rocks; the isotope ratios of the silicic lavas [87Sr/86Sr(t)=0.69988-0.70532; εNd(t)=4.76-8.00; 206Pb/204Pb(t)=17.435-18.017; 207Pb/204Pb(t)=15.438-15.509; 208Pb/204Pb(t) = 37.075-37.723] encompass those of the basic lavas. These data suggest a genetic link between rhyolites and basalts, but are not definitive in establishing whether silicic rocks are related to basalts through fractional crystallization or partial melting. Geochemical modeling of incompatible vs. compatible elements excludes the possibility that silicic melts are generated by the melting of basaltic rocks, and indicates a derivation by fractional crystallization plus moderate assimilation of wall rocks (AFC) starting from intermediate rocks to silicic rocks. Continuous AFC from basalt to rhyolite,with small rates of crustal assimilation, best explains the geochemical data. The presence or absence of bimodal volcanism (the "Daly Gap") might be related to cooling rates of magma chambers. In central and eastern Tianshan, the crust was thinner and the cooling rates of the magma chamber within the crust were greater. These conditions resulted in a rapid fall in temperature within the magma reservoir and caused a narrow temperature interval over which intermediate melts formed, effectively reducing the volume of the intermediate melts.

  15. The eruptive history and magmatic evolution of Aluto volcano: new insights into silicic peralkaline volcanism in the Ethiopian rift

    Hutchison, William; Pyle, David M.; Mather, Tamsin A.; Yirgu, Gezahegn; Biggs, Juliet; Cohen, Benjamin E.; Barfod, Dan N.; Lewi, Elias


    The silicic peralkaline volcanoes of the East African Rift are some of the least studied volcanoes on Earth. Here we bring together new constraints from fieldwork, remote sensing, geochronology and geochemistry to present the first detailed account of the eruptive history of Aluto, a restless silicic volcano located in a densely populated section of the Main Ethiopian Rift. Prior to the growth of the Aluto volcanic complex (before 500 ka) the region was characterized by a significant period of fault development and mafic fissure eruptions. The earliest volcanism at Aluto built up a trachytic complex over 8 km in diameter. Aluto then underwent large-volume ignimbrite eruptions at 316 ± 19 ka and 306 ± 12 ka developing a 42 km2 collapse structure. After a hiatus of 250 ka, a phase of post-caldera volcanism initiated at 55 ± 19 ka and the most recent eruption of Aluto has a radiocarbon age of 0.40 ± 0.05 cal. ka BP. During this post-caldera phase highly-evolved peralkaline rhyolite lavas, ignimbrites and pumice fall deposits have erupted from vents across the complex. Geochemical modelling is consistent with rhyolite genesis from protracted fractionation (> 80%) of basalt that is compositionally similar to rift-related basalts found east of the complex. Based on the style and volume of recent eruptions we suggest that silicic eruptions occur at an average rate of 1 per 1000 years, and that future eruptions of Aluto will involve explosive emplacement of localised pumice cones and effusive obsidian coulees of volumes in the range 1-100 × 106 m3.

  16. Lower Pliensbachian caldera volcanism in high-obliquity rift systems in the western North Patagonian Massif, Argentina

    Benedini, Leonardo; Gregori, Daniel; Strazzere, Leonardo; Falco, Juan I.; Dristas, Jorge A.


    In the Cerro Carro Quebrado and Cerro Catri Cura area, located at the border between the Neuquén Basin and the North Patagonian Massif, the Garamilla Formation is composed of four volcanic stages: 1) andesitic lava-flows related to the beginning of the volcanic system; 2) basal massive lithic breccias that represent the caldera collapse; 3) voluminous, coarse-crystal rich massive lava-like ignimbrites related to multiple, steady eruptions that represent the principal infill of the system; and, finally 4) domes, dykes, lava flows, and lava domes of rhyolitic composition indicative of a post-collapse stage. The analysis of the regional and local structures, as well as, the architectures of the volcanic facies, indicates the existence of a highly oblique rift, with its principal extensional strain in an NNE-SSW direction (˜N10°). The analyzed rocks are mainly high-potassium dacites and rhyolites with trace and RE elements contents of an intraplate signature. The age of these rocks (189 ± 0.76 Ma) agree well with other volcanic sequences of the western North Patagonian Massif, as well as, the Neuquén Basin, indicating that Pliensbachian magmatism was widespread in both regions. The age is also coincident with phase 1 of volcanism of the eastern North Patagonia Massif (188-178 Ma) represented by ignimbrites, domes, and pyroclastic rocks of the Marifil Complex, related to intraplate magmatism.

  17. Isotopic Ages of the Carbonatitic Volcanic Rocks in the Kunyang Rift Zone in Central Yunnan,China

    ZHANG Yongbei; WANG Guilan; NIE Jianfeng; ZHAO Chongshun; XU Chengyan; QIU Jiaxiang; Wang Hao


    The Mesoproterozoic Kunyang rift, which is located on the western margin of the Yangtze platform and the southern section of the Kangdian axis, is a rare massive Precambrian iron-copper polymetallic mineralization zone in China. The Mesoproterozoic Wulu (Wuding(Lufeng) basin in the middle of the rift is an elliptic basin controlled by a ring fracture system. Moreover, volcanic activities in the basin display zonation of an outer ring, a middle ring and an inner ring with carbonatitic volcanic rocks and sub-volcanic dykes discovered in the outer and middle rings. The Sm-Nd isochron ages have been determined for the outer-ring carbonatitic lavas (1685 Ma) and basaltic porphyrite of the radiating dyke swarm (1645 Ma) and the Rb-Sr isochron ages for the out-ring carbonatitic lavas (893 Ma) and the middle-ring dykes (1048 Ma). In combination of the U-Pb concordant ages of zircon (1743 Ma) in trachy-andesite of the corresponding period and stratum (1569 Ma) of the Etouchang Formation, as well as the Rb-Sr isochron age (1024 Ma) and K-Ar age (1186 Ma) of the dykes in the middle ring, the age of carbonatites in the basin is preliminarily determined. It is ensured that all of these carbonatites were formed in the Mesoproterozoic period, whereby two stages could be identified as follows: in the first stage, carbonatitic volcanic groups, such as lavas, pyroclastic rocks and volcaniclastic sedimentary rocks, were formed in the outer ring; in the second stage, carbonatitic breccias and dykes appeared in the middle ring. The metamorphic age of the carbonatitic lavas in the outer ring was determined to be concurrent with the end of the first stage of the Neoproterozoic period, corresponding to the Jinning movement in central Yunnan.

  18. Evaluation of the ongoing rifting and subduction processes in the geochemistry of magmas from the western part of the Mexican Volcanic Belt

    Verma, Surendra P.; Pandarinath, Kailasa; Rivera-Gómez, M. Abdelaly


    A compilation of new and published geochemical data for 1512 samples of volcanic rocks from the western part of the Mexican Volcanic Belt was first subdivided according to the age group (136 samples of Miocene and 1376 samples of Pliocene-Holocene). Rocks of the younger group were then subdivided as Rift (1014 samples from the triple-rift system) and No Rift (362 samples outside of the triple-rift system) or Near Trench (937 samples) and Far Trench (439 samples) magmas. These subdivisions were considered separately as basic, intermediate, and acid magmatic rocks. The application of the conventional and multidimensional techniques confirmed the great tectonic and geochemical complexity of this region. The presence of oceanic-type basalts suggested to result from a mantle plume was not confirmed from the tectonomagmatic multidimensional diagrams. The Miocene rocks, which are present at the surface far from the Middle-America Trench, showed a likely continental rift setting in most diagrams for basic rocks and a continental arc setting for intermediate rocks. These differences can be explained in terms of the petrogenetic origin of the magmas. Unlike the current thinking, the triple-rift system seems to have influenced the chemistry of Pliocene-Holocene basic rocks, which indicated a continental rift setting. The Pliocene-Holocene intermediate and acid rocks, however, did not show such an influence. The Pliocene-Holocene basic rocks indicated a continental rift setting, irrespective of the Near Trench and Far Trench subdivision because numerous Near Trench rocks also lie in the triple-rift and graben systems. However, the intermediate rocks having a crustal component in their genesis indicated a continental arc (Near Trench) or a transitional arc to within-plate setting (Far Trench). The acid rocks having a crustal component also suggested a continental arc (Near Trench) or a transitional setting (Far Trench). The application of the tectonomagmatic multidimensional

  19. New determinations of 40Ar/39Ar isotopic ages and flow volumes for Cenozoic volcanism in the Terror Rift, Ross Sea, Antarctica

    Rilling, S.; Mukasa, S.; Wilson, T.; Lawver, L.; Hall, C.


    This study provides new determinations of 40Ar/39Ar isotopic ages and flow volumes for submarine and subaerial Neogene volcanism developed within the Terror Rift, Ross Sea, Antarctica, the youngest segment of the West Antarctic Rift System. The study is based on the first dredged samples from seven seamounts north of Ross Island, as well as new data from Franklin and Beaufort Islands. The sampled foidite and basanitic lavas range in age from Quaternary (90 ± 66 ka) on a small seamount ˜10 km north of Franklin Island to 6.80 ± 0.05 Ma on Beaufort Island. These ages are consistent with ages of volcanism in both the Melbourne and Erebus Volcanic Provinces and significantly expand the documented area of Neogene magmatism in Victoria Land. There is no geographic progression of volcanism through time, but volcanism was voluminous in the Pliocene and particularly widespread during the Pleistocene. Two of the dredges sampled edifices comprised of less than 0.2 km3 of volcanic materials. The largest seamount in the study area has 58.8 km3 of volcanic material and represents growth over a period of several thousand years. Estimated minimum eruption rates range from 2 × 10-4 km3 y-1 to 2 × 10-3 km3 y-1, consistent with rates proposed for other rift systems and nearby Mt. Erebus. Recent estimates of extension magnitude for the Terror Rift correspond to minimal decompression of only 0.10 to 0.22 GPa and therefore limited melt output of a typical peridotite source.

  20. Trace element and Sr-Nd-Pb isotope geochemistry of Rungwe Volcanic Province, Tanzania: Implications for a superplume source for East Africa Rift magmatism

    Paterno R Castillo


    Full Text Available The recently discovered high, plume-like 3He/4He ratios at Rungwe Volcanic Province (RVP in southern Tanzania, similar to those at the Main Ethiopian Rift in Ethiopia, strongly suggest that magmatism associated with continental rifting along the entire East African Rift System (EARS has a deep mantle contribution (Hilton et al., 2011. New trace element and Sr-Nd-Pb isotopic data for high 3He/4He lavas and tephras from RVP can be explained by binary mixing relationships involving Early Proterozoic (+/- Archaean lithospheric mantle, present beneath the southern EARS, and a volatile-rich carbonatitic plume with a limited range of compositions and best represented by recent Nyiragongo lavas from the Virunga Volcanic Province also in the Western Rift. Other lavas from the Western Rift and from the southern Kenya Rift can also be explained through mixing between the same endmember components. In contrast, lavas from the northern Kenya and Main Ethiopian rifts can be explained through variable mixing between the same mantle plume material and the Middle to Late Proterozoic lithospheric mantle, present beneath the northern EARS. Thus, we propose that the bulk of EARS magmatism is sourced from mixing among three endmember sources: Early Proterozoic (+/- Archaean lithospheric mantle, Middle to Late Proterozoic lithospheric mantle and a volatile-rich carbonatitic plume with a limited range of compositions. We propose further that the African Superplume, a large, seismically anomalous feature originating in the lower mantle beneath southern Africa, influences magmatism throughout eastern Africa with magmatism at RVP and Main Ethiopian Rift representing two different heads of a single mantle plume source. This is consistent with a single mantle plume origin of the coupled He-Ne isotopic signatures of mantle-derived xenoliths and/or lavas from all segments of the EARS (Halldorsson et al., 2014.

  1. Inferno Chasm Rift Zone, Idaho: A Terrestrial Analog for Plains-style Volcanism in Southeastern Mare Serenitatis on the Moon

    Garry, W. B.; Hughes, S. S.; Kobs-Nawotniak, S. E.


    Volcanic features aligned along a linear graben in southeastern Mare Serenitatis (19°N, 27.5°E) on the Moon resemble a series of effusive basaltic landforms erupted along the Inferno Chasm rift zone within Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve (COTM), Idaho (42°58'00"N, 113°11'25"W). This region in Idaho is the type-locale for terrestrial plains-style volcanism. Examples of lunar plains-style volcanism have previously been described within Orientale Basin at Lacus Veris and Lacus Autumni, but this eruption style has not been used to describe the site in Mare Serenitatis. The SSERVI FINESSE team (Field Investigations to Enable Solar System Science and Exploration) has documented the features along Inferno Chasm rift using a LiDAR, Differential Global Positioning Systems, and Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) to compare with Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Narrow-Angle Camera images and digital terrain models. The region in southeastern Mare Serenitatis provides one of the best concentrations of features representative of lunar plains-style volcanism. On the Moon, these features include a cone (Osiris), a flat-topped dome, a rille-like channel (Isis), a vent, and a possible perched lava pond. In Idaho, the analog features include a dome (Grand View Crater), a rille-like channel (Inferno Chasm), vents (Cottrells Blowout, Horse Butte), and a perched lava pond (Papadakis). Both the scale and morphology of the features on the Moon are similar to the features in Idaho. For example, the channel in Isis is ~3 km long, 283 m-wide, and 25 m deep compared to Inferno Chasm which is ~1.7 km long, 100 m wide, and 20 m deep. The slope of the channel in Isis is -1.2°, while the channel in Inferno Chasm has a slope of -0.33°. The alignment of landforms on the Moon and Idaho are both consistent with dike emplacement. Observations of the flow stratigraphy for features in Idaho will inform the potential eruption conditions of the individual features on the Moon.

  2. Recent Rift Volcanism in the Northern Gulf of California and the Salton Through: Why a Preponderance of Evolved Magmas?

    Martín, A.; Weber, B.; Schmitt, A. K.; Lonsdale, P.


    Quaternary volcanoes and shallow intrusions throughout the northern Gulf Extensional Province provide a unique opportunity to characterize active crustal accretion associated with extreme continental rifting. In the Lower Delfin basin and Isla San Luis volcanic rocks have compositional continuity from basaltic andesite (>54 % SiO2) to sub-alkaline rhyolite, whereas Roca Consag in the Wagner basin, and Cerro Prieto are homogeneous, low-K, lithoidal, microlithic dacites. Salton Buttes surface lavas and a seamount in the Upper Delfin basin are dominantly rhyolitic. Basaltic xenoliths, intrusive basaltic sills and altered subsurface rhyolites are known from the Salton Trough and Cerro Prieto. All Quaternary volcanic rocks in the region have depleted (relative to CHUR) Nd isotopic compositions with ɛNd of +8.5 and +6.3 in the Salton Buttes and marginally lower values (+6.5 to +4.1) for Roca Consag, Lower Delfin basin and Isla San Luis. Rhyolite from the Upper Delfin basin yielded ɛNd of +2.2. These values are consistent with overall depleted 87Sr/86/Sr ratios (0.70353-0.70382). Only rhyolites from Lower and Upper Delfin basin have higher 87Sr/86Sr (0.70492 -0.70661) compared to coexisting andesites, which implies hydrothermal alteration and/or minor contamination by continental crust and/or sediments. Volcanic rocks within individual basins thus represent variably differentiated and, to a smaller degree, contaminated, co- genetic suites, as indicated by negative Eu anomalies that reflect plagioclase fractionation in rhyolites. Ion microprobe ages of zircons from Roca Consag are heterogeneous. The youngest ages are ~120 ka and several pre-Quaternary xenocrysts were observed, but the data define a dominant peak at ~1 Ma. The isotope data suggest recent differentiation of dominantly mantle-derived young crust. The preponderance of intermediate to felsic volcanism in the northern Gulf of California suggests that only low- density magmas can reach shallow levels where they

  3. Evolution of the Latir volcanic field, Northern New Mexico, and its relation to the Rio Grande Rift, as indicated by potassium-argon and fission track dating

    Lipman, Peter W.; Mehnert, Harald H.; Naeser, Charles W.


    Remnants of the Latir volcanic field and cogenetic plutonic rocks are exceptionally exposed along the east margin of the present-day Rio Grande rift by topographic and structural relief in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains of northern New Mexico. Evolution of the magmatic system associated with the Latir field, which culminated in eruption of a regional ash flow sheet (the Amalia Tuff) and collapse of the Questa caldera 26 m.y. ago, has been documented by 74 new potassium-argon (K-Ar) and fission track (F-T) ages. The bulk of the precaldera volcanism, ash flow eruptions and caldera formation, and initial crystallization of the associated shallow granitic batholith took place between 28 and 25 Ma; economically important molybdenum mineralization is related to smaller granitic intrusions along the south margin of the Questa caldera at about 23 Ma. Interpretation of the radiogenic ages within this relatively restricted time span is complicated by widespread thermal resetting of earlier parts of the igneous sequence by later intrusions. Many samples yielded discordant ages for different mineral phases. Thermal blocking temperatures decrease in the order: K-Ar sanidine > K-Ar biotite > F-T zircon ≫ F-T apatite. The F-T results are especially useful indicators of cooling and uplift rates. Upper portions of the subvolcanic batholith, that underlay the Questa caldera, cooled to about 100°C within about a million years of emplacement; uplift of the batholith increases to the south along this segment of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. Activity in the Latir volcanic field was concurrent with southwest directed extension along the early Rio Grande rift zone in northern New Mexico and southern Colorado. The geometry of this early rifting is compatible with interpretation as back arc extension related to a subduction system dipping gently beneath the cordilleran region of the American plate. The Latir field lies at the southern end of a southward migrating Tertiary magmatic

  4. Evidence for voluminous bimodal pyroclastic volcanism during rifting of a Paleoproterozoic arc at Snow Lake, Manitoba

    Lafrance, Bruno; Rubingh, Kate E; Gibson, Harold L


    ...) assemblage of the Flin Flon belt. Stratigraphic correlation of volcanic strata of the MB sequence with strata of the thrust-bounded Chisel sequence indicates that distinctive, submarine, eruption-fed, pyroclastic flow deposits...

  5. Monitoring the NW volcanic rift-zone of Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain: sixteen years of diffuse CO_{2} degassing surveys

    Rodríguez, Fátima; Halliwell, Simon; Butters, Damaris; Padilla, Germán; Padrón, Eleazar; Hernández, Pedro A.; Pérez, Nemesio M.


    Tenerife is the largest of the Canary Islands and, together with Gran Canaria, is the only one that has developed a central volcanic complex characterized by the eruption of differentiated magmas. At present, one of the most active volcanic structures in Tenerife is the North-West Rift-Zone (NWRZ), which has hosted two historical eruptions: Arenas Negras in 1706 and Chinyero in 1909. Since the year 2000, 47 soil CO2 efflux surveys have been undertaken at the NWRZ of Tenerife Island to evaluate the temporal and spatial variations of CO2 efflux and their relationships with the volcanic-seismic activity. We report herein the last results of diffuse CO2 efflux survey at the NWRZ carried out in July 2015 to constrain the total CO2 output from the studied area. Measurements were performed in accordance with the accumulation chamber method. Spatial distribution maps were constructed following the sequential Gaussian simulation (sGs) procedure. During 2015 survey, soil CO2 efflux values ranged from non-detectable up to 103 g m-2 d-1. The total diffuse CO2 output released to atmosphere was estimated at 403 ± 17 t d-1, values higher than the background CO2 emission estimated on 143 t d-1. For all campaigns, soil CO2 efflux values ranged from non-detectable up to 141 g m-2 d-1, with the highest values measured in May 2005. Total CO2 output from the studied area ranged between 52 and 867 t d-1. Temporal variations in the total CO2 output showed a temporal correlation with the onsets of seismic activity, supporting unrest of the volcanic system, as is also suggested by anomalous seismic activity recorded in the area during April 22-29, 2004. Spatial distribution of soil CO2 efflux values also showed changes in magnitude and amplitude, with higher CO2 efflux values located along a trending WNW-ESE area. Subsurface magma movement is proposed as a cause for the observed changes in the total output of diffuse CO2 emission, as well as for the spatial distribution of soil CO2 efflux

  6. Spatial and temporal variations of diffuse CO_{2} degassing at the N-S volcanic rift-zone of Tenerife (Canary Islands, Spain) during 2002-2015 period

    Alonso, Mar; Ingman, Dylan; Alexander, Scott; Barrancos, José; Rodríguez, Fátima; Melián, Gladys; Pérez, Nemesio M.


    Tenerife is the largest of the Canary Islands and, together with Gran Canaria Island, is the only one with a central volcanic complex that started to grow at about 3.5 Ma. Nowadays the central complex is formed by Las Cañadas caldera, a volcanic depression measuring 16×9 km that resulted from multiple vertical collapses and was partially filled by post-caldera volcanic products. Up to 297 mafic monogenetic cones have been recognized on Tenerife, and they represent the most common eruptive activity occurring on the island during the last 1 Ma (Dóniz et al., 2008). Most of the monogenetic cones are aligned following a triple junction-shaped rift system, as result of inflation produced by the concentration of emission vents and dykes in bands at 120o to one another as a result of minimum stress fracturing of the crust by a mantle upwelling. The main structural characteristic of the southern volcanic rift (N-S) of the island is an apparent absence of a distinct ridge, and a fan shaped distribution of monogenetic cones. Four main volcanic successions in the southern volcanic rift zone of Tenerife, temporally separated by longer periods (˜70 - 250 ka) without volcanic activity, have been identified (Kröchert and Buchner, 2008). Since there are currently no visible gas emissions at the N-S rift, diffuse degassing surveys have become an important geochemical tool for the surveillance of this volcanic system. We report here the last results of diffuse CO2 efflux survey at the N-S rift of Tenerife, performed using the accumulation chamber method in the summer period of 2015. The objectives of the surveys were: (i) to constrain the total CO2 output from the studied area and (ii) to evaluate occasional CO2 efflux surveys as a volcanic surveillance tool for the N-S rift of Tenerife. Soil CO2 efflux values ranged from non-detectable up to 31.7 g m-2 d-1. A spatial distribution map, constructed following the sequential Gaussian simulation (sGs) procedure, did not show an

  7. Mercury isotopic composition of hydrothermal systems in the Yellowstone Plateau volcanic field and Guaymas Basin sea-floor rift

    Sherman, L.S.; Blum, J.D.; Nordstrom, D.K.; McCleskey, R.B.; Barkay, T.; Vetriani, C.


    To characterize mercury (Hg) isotopes and isotopic fractionation in hydrothermal systems we analyzed fluid and precipitate samples from hot springs in the Yellowstone Plateau volcanic field and vent chimney samples from the Guaymas Basin sea-floor rift. These samples provide an initial indication of the variability in Hg isotopic composition among marine and continental hydrothermal systems that are controlled predominantly by mantle-derived magmas. Fluid samples from Ojo Caliente hot spring in Yellowstone range in δ202Hg from - 1.02‰ to 0.58‰ (± 0.11‰, 2SD) and solid precipitate samples from Guaymas Basin range in δ202Hg from - 0.37‰ to - 0.01‰ (± 0.14‰, 2SD). Fluid samples from Ojo Caliente display mass-dependent fractionation (MDF) of Hg from the vent (δ202Hg = 0.10‰ ± 0.11‰, 2SD) to the end of the outflow channel (&delta202Hg = 0.58‰ ± 0.11‰, 2SD) in conjunction with a decrease in Hg concentration from 46.6pg/g to 20.0pg/g. Although a small amount of Hg is lost from the fluids due to co-precipitation with siliceous sinter, we infer that the majority of the observed MDF and Hg loss from waters in Ojo Caliente is due to volatilization of Hg0(aq) to Hg0(g) and the preferential loss of Hg with a lower δ202Hg value to the atmosphere. A small amount of mass-independent fractionation (MIF) was observed in all samples from Ojo Caliente (Δ199Hg = 0.13‰ ±1 0.06‰, 2SD) but no significant MIF was measured in the sea-floor rift samples from Guaymas Basin. This study demonstrates that several different hydrothermal processes fractionate Hg isotopes and that Hg isotopes may be used to better understand these processes.

  8. Volcanic Zone, New Zealand

    Graham J. Weir


    Full Text Available A conceptual model of the Taupo Volcanic Zone (TVZ is developed, to a depth of 25 km, formed from three constant density layers. The upper layer is formed from eruption products. A constant rate of eruption is assumed, which eventually implies a constant rate of extension, and a constant rate of volumetric creation in the middle and bottom layers. Tectonic extension creates volume which can accomodate magmatic intrusions. Spreading models assume this volume is distributed throughout the whole region, perhaps in vertical dykes, whereas rifting models assume the upper crust is thinned and the volume created lies under this upper crust. Bounds on the heat flow from such magmatic intrusions are calculated. Heat flow calculations are performed and some examples are provided which match the present total heat output from the TVZ of about 4200 MW, but these either have extension rates greater than the low values of about 8 ± 4 mm/a being reported from GPS measurements, or else consider extension rates in the TVZ to have varied over time.

  9. Using high-precision 40Ar/39Ar geochronology to understand volcanic hazards within the Rio Grande rift and along the Jemez lineament, New Mexico

    Zimmerer, M. J.; McIntosh, W. C.; Heizler, M. T.; Lafferty, J.


    High-precision Ar/Ar ages were generated for late Quaternary volcanic fields in the Rio Grande rift and along the Jemez Lineament, New Mexico, to assess the time-space patterns of volcanism and begin quantifying volcanic hazards for the region. The published chronology of most late Quaternary volcanic centers in the region is not sufficiently precise, accurate, or complete for a comprehensive volcanic hazard assessment. Ar/Ar ages generated as part of this study were determined using the high-sensitivity, multi-collector ARGUS VI mass spectrometer, which provides about an order of magnitude more precise isotopic measurements compared to older generation, single-detector mass spectrometers. Ar/Ar ages suggest an apparent increase in eruption frequency during the late Quaternary within the Raton-Clayton volcanic field, northeastern NM. Only four volcanoes erupted between 426±8 and 97±3 ka. Contrastingly, four volcanoes erupted between 55±2 and 32±5 ka. This last eruptive phase displays a west to east migration of volcanism, has repose periods of 0 to 17 ka, and an average recurrence rate of 1 eruption per 5750 ka. The Zuni-Bandera volcanic field, west-central NM, is composed of the ~100 late Quaternary basaltic vents. Preliminary results suggest that most of the Chain of Craters, the largest and oldest part of the Zuni-Bandera field, erupted between ~100 and 250 ka. Volcanism then migrated to the east, where published ages indicate at least seven eruptions between 50 and 3 ka. Both volcanic fields display a west to east migration of volcanism during the last ~500 ka, although the pattern is more pronounced in the Zuni-Bandera field. A reassessment of low-precision published ages for other late Quaternary volcanic fields in region indicates that most fields display a similar west to east migration of volcanism during the last ~500 ka. One possible mechanism to explain the observed patterns of volcanism is the westward migration of the North American plate relative

  10. Diffuse CO2 emission from the NE volcanic rift-zone of Tenerife (Canary Islands, Spain): a 15 years geochemical monitoring

    Padilla, Germán; Alonso, Mar; Shoemaker, Trevor; Loisel, Ariane; Padrón, Eleazar; Hernández, Pedro A.; Pérez, Nemesio M.


    The North East Rift (NER) volcanic zone of Tenerife Island is one of the three volcanic rift-zones of the island (210 km2). The most recent eruptive activity along the NER volcanic zone took place in the 1704-1705 period with the volcanic eruptions of Siete Fuentes, Fasnia and Arafo volcanoes. The aim of this study was to report the results of a soil CO2 efflux survey undertaken in June 2015, with approximately 580 measuring sites. In-situ measurements of CO2 efflux from the surface environment of NER volcanic zone were performed by means of a portable non-dispersive infrared spectrophotometer (NDIR) model LICOR Li800 following the accumulation chamber method. To quantify the total CO2 emission from NER volcanic zone, soil CO2 efflux contour maps were constructed using sequential Gaussian simulation (sGs) as interpolation method. The total diffuse CO2 emission rate was estimated in 1209 t d-1, with CO2 efflux values ranging from non-detectable (˜0.5 g m-2 d-1) up to 123 g m-2 d-1, with an average value of 5.9 g m-2 d-1. If we compare these results with those obtained in previous surveys developed in a yearly basis, they reveal slightly variations from 2006 to 2015, with to pulses in the CO2 emission observed in 2007 and 2014. The main temporal variation in the total CO2 output does not seem to be masked by external variations. First peak precedes the anomalous seismicity registered in and around Tenerife Island between 2009 and 2011, suggesting stress-strain changes at depth as a possible cause for the observed changes in the total output of diffuse CO2 emission. Second peak could be related with futures changes in the seismicity. This study demonstrates the importance of performing soil CO2 efflux surveys as an effective surveillance volcanic tool.

  11. Segmented lateral dyke growth in a rifting event at Bárðarbunga volcanic system, Iceland.

    Sigmundsson, Freysteinn; Hooper, Andrew; Hreinsdóttir, Sigrún; Vogfjörd, Kristín S; Ófeigsson, Benedikt G; Heimisson, Elías Rafn; Dumont, Stéphanie; Parks, Michelle; Spaans, Karsten; Gudmundsson, Gunnar B; Drouin, Vincent; Árnadóttir, Thóra; Jónsdóttir, Kristín; Gudmundsson, Magnús T; Högnadóttir, Thórdís; Fridriksdóttir, Hildur María; Hensch, Martin; Einarsson, Páll; Magnússon, Eyjólfur; Samsonov, Sergey; Brandsdóttir, Bryndís; White, Robert S; Ágústsdóttir, Thorbjörg; Greenfield, Tim; Green, Robert G; Hjartardóttir, Ásta Rut; Pedersen, Rikke; Bennett, Richard A; Geirsson, Halldór; La Femina, Peter C; Björnsson, Helgi; Pálsson, Finnur; Sturkell, Erik; Bean, Christopher J; Möllhoff, Martin; Braiden, Aoife K; Eibl, Eva P S


    Crust at many divergent plate boundaries forms primarily by the injection of vertical sheet-like dykes, some tens of kilometres long. Previous models of rifting events indicate either lateral dyke growth away from a feeding source, with propagation rates decreasing as the dyke lengthens, or magma flowing vertically into dykes from an underlying source, with the role of topography on the evolution of lateral dykes not clear. Here we show how a recent segmented dyke intrusion in the Bárðarbunga volcanic system grew laterally for more than 45 kilometres at a variable rate, with topography influencing the direction of propagation. Barriers at the ends of each segment were overcome by the build-up of pressure in the dyke end; then a new segment formed and dyke lengthening temporarily peaked. The dyke evolution, which occurred primarily over 14 days, was revealed by propagating seismicity, ground deformation mapped by Global Positioning System (GPS), interferometric analysis of satellite radar images (InSAR), and graben formation. The strike of the dyke segments varies from an initially radial direction away from the Bárðarbunga caldera, towards alignment with that expected from regional stress at the distal end. A model minimizing the combined strain and gravitational potential energy explains the propagation path. Dyke opening and seismicity focused at the most distal segment at any given time, and were simultaneous with magma source deflation and slow collapse at the Bárðarbunga caldera, accompanied by a series of magnitude M > 5 earthquakes. Dyke growth was slowed down by an effusive fissure eruption near the end of the dyke. Lateral dyke growth with segment barrier breaking by pressure build-up in the dyke distal end explains how focused upwelling of magma under central volcanoes is effectively redistributed over long distances to create new upper crust at divergent plate boundaries.

  12. Two- and three-dimensional gravity modeling along western continental margin and intraplate Narmada-Tapti rifts: Its relevance to Deccan flood basalt volcanism

    Somdev Bhattacharji; Rajesh Sharma; Nilanjan Chatterjee


    magma chambers along the western continental margin and the intraplate Narmada-Tapti rifts at estimated depths between 6 and 8 km from the surface (consistent with geological, petrological and geochemical models) appear to be the major reservoirs for Deccan flood basalt volcanism at approximately 65 Ma.

  13. Timing of volcanism and initiation of rifting in Omo-Turkana Depression, Southwestern Ethiopia: Evidence from Paleomagnetism

    Erbello, A.; Kidane, T.; Brown, F.


    Abstract This Paleomagnetic study was carried out on thin widely spread lava flows of Gombe Group basalts from the lower Omo Valley in southwestern Ethiopia. The objective of the study is to integrate paleomagnetic results with previous geochronological data to know timing of volcanism and to infer the time for which the present architecture of the basin was attained. 80 oriented core samples were taken from nine sites in two field trips. Rock magnetic, petrology and paleomagnetic studies were done in the laboratory of Earth Sciences at Addis Ababa University. Pilot specimens were subjected to alternating field (AF) and thermal (TH) demagnetization and acquisition experiments. The Natural Remanent Magnetization (NRM) direction comprises two vector components in most samples. The first component of magnetization was easily erased at 5 to 25mT AF demagnetization and 120°C to 250°C TH demagnetization. A step wise increasing application of magnetic field to selected specimens revealed a saturation magnetization at about 300°C. The magnetization curve results from the acquisition experiment together with TH demagnetization of the same specimens and AF demagnetization results indicates that titanomagnetite is the dominant magnetic carrier. About 50% of magnetization is removed between Temperature ranges of 2500C and 4300C suggesting pseudo single domains as a primary carrier of magnetic remanence. From a total of nine sites, six sites show reversed polarity and two sites show normal polarity. One site has been removed because of samples from that site may have been affected by lightning. The normal and reversed polarities are 1800 apart thus they are antipodal to one another. The overall mean direction for 6 sites of reversed polarity is (DS=186.1, IS=-1.9,KS=38.8, α95=10.9) where as the two sites with normal polarity yield (DS=348.4, IS=4.6, K=378.9, α95=12.9).By using the available upper age control of Moiti tuff (3.98Ma) and Naibar tuff (4.02 Ma) which have never

  14. Diverse mantle and crustal components in lavas of the NW Cerros del Rio volcanic field, Rio Grande Rift, New Mexico

    Duncker, K. E.; Wolff, J. A.; Harmon, R. S.; Leat, P. T.; Dickin, A. P.; Thompson, R. N.


    Products of Pliocene (2 4 Ma) mafic to intermediate volcanism in the northwestern Cerros del Rio, a dominantly mafic volcanic field in the Española Basin of the Rio Grande Rift (RGR), range from 49% to 63% SiO2 and exhibit diversity in silica saturation, trace-element patterns, and isotopic compositions. Tholeiites, which are largely confined to west of the Rio Grande, have trace-element abundances that resemble those of oceanic basalts, but with mild depletions in Nb and Ta, and high 87Sr/86Sr, low 143Nd/144Nd, and high δ18O compared to typical OIB. They are regarded as asthenospherically-derived magmas contaminated with continental crust. Alkali basalts and hawaiites erupted from vents east of the Rio Grande are geochemically distinct, having generally higher overall incompatible-element abundances, but with pronounced depletions in K, Rb, Nb and Ta with respect to Th and LREE. Spatially-associated benmoreites, mugearites and latites (collectively termed “evolved” lavas) have similar trace-element characteristics to the mafic mildly-alkaline compositions, but are typically not as depleted in K. Hawaiites and evolved lavas exhibit a good negative correlation of 143Nd/144Nd with SiO2, due to interaction with lower continental crust. The most silicic “evolved” lavas carry the highest proportions of crustal material, and consequently have higher K/Th than the related hawaiites. Several (mostly mafic) lavas contain abundant crustally-derived resorbed quartz xenocrysts in O-isotope disequilibrium with the host magma. The δ18O values of xenocrystic quartz range over 4‰, indicating a variety of quartz-bearing crustal contaminants beneath the Española Basin. The hawaiites, with their unusual combination of trace-element enrichments and depletions, cannot be generated by any process of fractionation or crustal contamination superposed on a common mantle source type (oceanic or arc-source). It is a regional mantle source type, inasmuch as it was also present

  15. Sr and Nd isotopic characteristics of 1.77-1.58 Ga rift-related granites and volcanics of the Goias tin province, Central Brazil

    Pimentel, Marcio M.; Botelho, Nilson F. [Brasilia Univ., DF (Brazil). Inst. de Geociencias]. E-mail:


    Supracrustal rocks of the Arai Group, together with coeval A-type granites represent a ca. 1.77-1.58 Ga old continental rift in Brazil. Two granite families are identified: the older (1.77 Ga) group forms small undeformed plutons, and the younger granites (ca. 1.58 Ga) constitute larger, deformed plutons. Sr-Nd isotopic data for these rocks indicate that the magmatism is mostly produced of re-melting of Paleoproterozoic sialic crust. Initial Sr ratios for both granite families are ca 0.276 and 0.720. Most TDM model ages are between 2.58 and 1.80 Ga. {epsilon}{sub Nd} (T) values are between +3.6 and -11.9. Arai volcanics are bimodal, with basalts and dacites/rhyolites interlayered with continental sediments. The felsic volcanics show Nd isotopic characteristics which are very similar to the granites, and are also interpreted as reworking of Paleoproterozoic crust. Detrital sediments of the Arai Group revealed T{sub DM} model ages between 2.4 and 2.16 Ga., indicating that they are the product of erosion of Paleoproterozoic crust. The data indicate that the Arai rift system was established on crust that had just become stable after the Paleoproterozoic orogeny. (author)

  16. 40Ar/39Ar Geochronology, Isotope Geochemistry (Sr, Nd, Pb), and petrology of alkaline lavas near Yampa, Colorado: migration of alkaline volcanism and evolution of the northern Rio Grande rift

    Cosca, Michael A.; Thompson, Ren A.; Lee, John P.; Turner, Kenzie J.; Neymark, Leonid A.; Premo, Wayne R.


    Volcanic rocks near Yampa, Colorado (USA), represent one of several small late Miocene to Quaternary alkaline volcanic fields along the northeast margin of the Colorado Plateau. Basanite, trachybasalt, and basalt collected from six sites within the Yampa volcanic field were investigated to assess correlations with late Cenozoic extension and Rio Grande rifting. In this paper we report major and trace element rock and mineral compositions and Ar, Sr, Nd, and Pb isotope data for these volcanic rocks. High-precision 40Ar/39Ar geochronology indicates westward migration of volcanism within the Yampa volcanic field between 6 and 4.5 Ma, and the Sr, Nd, and Pb isotope values are consistent with a primary source in the Proterozoic subcontinental lithospheric mantle. Relict olivine phenocrysts have Mg- and Ni-rich cores, whereas unmelted clinopyroxene cores are Na and Si enriched with finely banded Ca-, Mg-, Al-, and Ti-enriched rims, thus tracing their crystallization history from a lithospheric mantle source region to one in contact with melt prior to eruption. A regional synthesis of Neogene and younger volcanism within the Rio Grande rift corridor, from northern New Mexico to southern Wyoming, supports a systematic overall southwest migration of alkaline volcanism. We interpret this Neogene to Quaternary migration of volcanism toward the northeast margin of the Colorado Plateau to record passage of melt through subvertical zones within the lithosphere weakened by late Cenozoic extension. If the locus of Quaternary alkaline magmatism defines the current location of the Rio Grande rift, it includes the Leucite Hills, Wyoming. We suggest that alkaline volcanism in the incipient northern Rio Grande rift, north of Leadville, Colorado, represents melting of the subcontinental lithospheric mantle in response to transient infiltration of asthenospheric mantle into deep, subvertical zones of dilational crustal weakness developed during late Cenozoic extension that have been

  17. Episodic kinematics in continental rifts modulated by changes in mantle melt fraction

    Lamb, Simon; Moore, James D. P.; Smith, Euan; Stern, Tim


    Oceanic crust is created by the extraction of molten rock from underlying mantle at the seafloor ‘spreading centres’ found between diverging tectonic plates. Modelling studies have suggested that mantle melting can occur through decompression as the mantle flows upwards beneath spreading centres, but direct observation of this process is difficult beneath the oceans. Continental rifts, however—which are also associated with mantle melt production—are amenable to detailed measurements of their short-term kinematics using geodetic techniques. Here we show that such data can provide evidence for an upwelling mantle flow, as well as information on the dimensions and timescale of mantle melting. For North Island, New Zealand, around ten years of campaign and continuous GPS measurements in the continental rift system known as the Taupo volcanic zone reveal that it is extending at a rate of 6-15 millimetres per year. However, a roughly 70-kilometre-long segment of the rift axis is associated with strong horizontal contraction and rapid subsidence, and is flanked by regions of extension and uplift. These features fit a simple model that involves flexure of an elastic upper crust, which is pulled downwards or pushed upwards along the rift axis by a driving force located at a depth greater than 15 kilometres. We propose that flexure is caused by melt-induced episodic changes in the vertical flow forces that are generated by upwelling mantle beneath the rift axis, triggering a transient lower-crustal flow. A drop in the melt fraction owing to melt extraction raises the mantle flow viscosity and drives subsidence, whereas melt accumulation reduces viscosity and allows uplift—processes that are also likely to occur in oceanic spreading centres.

  18. Miocene rifting in the Los Angeles basin: Evidence from the Puente Hills half-graben, volcanic rocks, and P-wave tomography

    Bjorklund, Tom; Burke, Kevin; Zhou, Hua-Wei; Yeats, Robert S.


    Formation of the Puente Hills half-graben in the northeastern Los Angeles basin and eruption of the Glendora and El Modeno Volcanics (16 14 Ma) help to define the timing of extension in the basin. Normal faulting on the proto-Whittier fault ca. 14 Ma established the Puente Hills half-graben, in which sedimentary strata accumulated between ca. 14 and 10 Ma and into which diabase sills intruded. North-South contraction began to invert the Puente Hills half-graben ca. 7 Ma, leading to formation of the Puente Hills anticline and the Whittier fault. Our high-resolution three-dimensional P-wave velocity model shows two anomalous higher velocity (6.63 km/s) bodies at depths between 9 and 18 km, which we attribute to dioritic plutons named here for Whittier Narrows and El Modeno. The stocklike Whittier Narrows pluton could have been a source for the Glendora Volcanics and the diabase sills in the Puente Hills half-graben. The sill-shaped El Modeno pluton was a likely source for the El Modeno Volcanics. The northwesterly alignment of the plutons may mark the location of the northeastern Los Angeles basin rift boundary, which is associated with the clockwise rotation of the western Transverse Ranges. Three active faults, the Elysian Park blind thrust, the Puente Hills blind thrust, and the Whittier fault, converge on the Whittier Narrows pluton, which may have played a role in their location and segmentation.

  19. Volcanic rocks and processes of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge rift valley near 36 ° 49′ N

    Hekinian, R.; Moore, J.G.; Bryan, W.B.


    Eighty samples of submarine basaltic lava were sampled from an 8 km segment of the floor and walls of the inner rift valley of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge during the French American Mid-Ocean Undersea Study (project Famous). The samples were collected from outcrops and talus slopes by the three submersibles: Alvin, Archimede, and Cyana at water depths of about 2600 meters.

  20. Mastritherium (Artiodactyla, Anthracotheriidae) from Wadi Sabya, southwestern Saudi Arabia; an earliest Miocene age for continental rift-valley volcanic deposits of the Red Sea margin

    Madden, Gary T.; Schmidt, Dwight Lyman; Whitmore, Frank C.


    A lower jaw fragment with its last molar (M/3) from the Baid formation in Wadi Sabya, southwestern Saudi Arabia, represents the first recorded occurrence in the Arabian Peninsula of an anthracotheriid artiodactyl (hippo-like, even-toed ungulate). This fossil is identified as a primitive species of Masritherium, a North and East African genus restricted, previously to the later early Miocene. This identification indicates that the age of the Baid formation, long problematical, is early Miocene and, moreover, shows that the age of the fossil site is earliest Miocene (from 25 to 21Ma). The Wadi Sabya anthracothere is the first species of fossil mammal recorded from western Saudi Arabia, and more important, it indicates an early Miocene age for the volcanic deposits of a continental rift-valley that preceded the initial sea-floor spreading of the Red Sea.

  1. Geochronology and geochemistry of the Early Jurassic Yeba Formation volcanic rocks in southern Tibet: Initiation of back-arc rifting and crustal accretion in the southern Lhasa Terrane

    Wei, Youqing; Zhao, Zhidan; Niu, Yaoling; Zhu, Di-Cheng; Liu, Dong; Wang, Qing; Hou, Zengqian; Mo, Xuanxue; Wei, Jiuchuan


    Understanding the geological history of the Lhasa Terrane prior to the India-Asia collision ( 55 ± 10 Ma) is essential for improved models of syn-collisional and post-collisional processes in the southern Lhasa Terrane. The Miocene ( 18-10 Ma) adakitic magmatism with economically significant porphyry-type mineralization has been interpreted as resulting from partial melting of the Jurassic juvenile crust, but how this juvenile crust was accreted remains poorly known. For this reason, we carried out a detailed study on the volcanic rocks of the Yeba Formation (YF) with the results offering insights into the ways in which the juvenile crust may be accreted in the southern Lhasa Terrane in the Jurassic. The YF volcanic rocks are compositionally bimodal, comprising basalt/basaltic andesite and dacite/rhyolite dated at 183-174 Ma. All these rocks have an arc-like signature with enriched large ion lithophile elements (LILEs; e.g., Rb, Ba and U) and light rare earth elements (LREEs) and depleted high field strength elements (HFSEs; e.g., Nb, Ta, Ti). They also have depleted whole-rock Sr-Nd and zircon Hf isotopic compositions, pointing to significant mantle isotopic contributions. Modeling results of trace elements and isotopes are most consistent with the basalts being derived from a mantle source metasomatized by varying enrichment of subduction components. The silicic volcanic rocks show the characteristics of transitional I-S type granites, and are best interpreted as resulting from re-melting of a mixed source of juvenile amphibole-rich lower crust with reworked crustal materials resembling metagraywackes. Importantly, our results indicate northward Neo-Tethyan seafloor subduction beneath the Lhasa Terrane with the YF volcanism being caused by the initiation of back-arc rifting. The back-arc setting is a likely site for juvenile crustal accretion in the southern Lhasa Terrane.

  2. The Chaîne des Puys and Limagne Fault World Heritage project: a global partnership for raising the profile of monogenetic volcanism and rifting

    Olive-Garcia, C.


    The present Chaîne des Puys and Limagne Fault World Heritage project represents a global partnership for raising the profile of monogenetic volcanism and rifting. From the 19th Century the Chaîne des Puys and Limagne Fault have been at the centre of discussion about the nature of volcanoes, and the origin of rifts. Part of this interest was due to the action of landowners and government agents such as Montlosier and Desmarest (who first realised that the chain were volcanoes), and national leaders such as Napoleon I, who was instrumental in the visit of Humphrey Davey and Michael Farady in 1805. The chain features largely in Scrope's 'Considerations on v olcanoes' 1825, and of Bonney's 'Volcanoes their structure and significance' of 1899. The fault escarpment is discussed at length by Lyell in Principles of Geology (1830), although they did not recognise it yet as a rift. The area has seen the development of a modern scientific-government-private partnership in geoscience research and education that has developed in parallel with the growth of a earth science centre of excellence, now the Laboratoire Magmas et Volcans. In addition, local owners and users have taken an important part in the development of this partnership to help create a sustainable management of the area. Partnerships have been developed with other sites around the world to share best practice, especially in managing inhabited natural sites. For over 30 years the area has been part of the evolving Auvergne Region Natural Volcano Park, for five years the central Puy de Dôme is a 'Grande site de France', equivalent to a national monument. Educational attractions grew up first as private - scientific partnerships (e.g. Lemptégy, Volvic, Maison de la Pierre) and then with greater public input like Vulcania and the Puy de Dome. The channelling of visitors has been accomplished by improved access by bus, and a new cog-railway up the Puy de Dôme. I present an overview of the UNESCO project, and show

  3. North America's Midcontinent Rift: when Rift MET Lip

    Stein, C. A.; Stein, S. A.; Kley, J.; Keller, G. R., Jr.; Bollmann, T. A.; Wolin, E.; Zhang, H.; Frederiksen, A. W.; Ola, K.; Wysession, M. E.; Wiens, D.; Alequabi, G.; Waite, G. P.; Blavascunas, E.; Engelmann, C. A.; Flesch, L. M.; Rooney, T. O.; Moucha, R.; Brown, E.


    Rifts are segmented linear depressions, filled with sedimentary and igneous rocks, that form by extension and often evolve into plate boundaries. Flood basalts, a class of Large Igneous Provinces (LIPs), are broad regions of extensive volcanism due to sublithospheric processes. Typical rifts are not filled with flood basalts, and typical flood basalts are not associated with significant crustal extension and faulting. North America's Midcontinent Rift (MCR) is an unusual combination. Its 3000-km length formed as part of the 1.1 Ga rifting of Amazonia (Precambrian NE South America) from Laurentia (Precambrian North America) and became inactive once seafloor spreading was established, but contains an enormous volume of igneous rocks. MCR volcanics are significantly thicker than other flood basalts, due to deposition in a narrow rift rather than a broad region, giving a rift geometry but a LIP's magma volume. Structural modeling of seismic reflection data shows an initial rift phase where flood basalts filled a fault-controlled extending basin, and a postrift phase where volcanics and sediments were deposited in a thermally subsiding basin without associated faulting. The crust thinned during rifting and rethickened during the postrift phase and later compression, yielding the present thicker crust. The coincidence of a rift and LIP yielded the world's largest deposit of native copper. This combination arose when a new rift associated with continental breakup interacted with a mantle plume or anomalously hot or fertile upper mantle. Integration of diverse data types and models will give insight into questions including how the magma source was related to the rifting, how their interaction operated over a long period of rapid plate motion, why the lithospheric mantle below the MCR differs only slightly from its surroundings, how and why extension, volcanism, and compression varied along the rift arms, and how successful seafloor spreading ended the rift phase. Papers

  4. Sr and Nd isotopic characteristics of 1.77-1.58 Ga rift-related granites and volcanics of the Goiás tin province, central Brazil



    Full Text Available Supracrustal rocks of the Araí Group, together with coeval A-type granites represent a ca. 1.77-1.58 Ga old continental rift in Brazil. Two granite families are identified: the older (1.77 Ga group forms small undeformed plutons, and the younger granites (ca. 1.58 Ga constitute larger, deformed plutons. Sr-Nd isotopic data for these rocks indicate that the magmatism is mostly product of re-melting of Paleoproterozoic sialic crust. Initial Sr ratios for both granite families are ca 0.726 and 0.720. Most TDM model ages are between 2.58 and 1.80 Ga. epsilonND(T values are between +3.6 and -11.9. Araí volcanics are bimodal, with basalts and dacites/rhyolites interlayered with continental sediments. The felsic volcanics show Nd isotopic characteristics which are very similar to the granites, and are also interpreted as reworking of Paleoproterozoic crust. Detrital sediments of the Araí Group revealed T DM model ages between 2.4 and 2.16 Ga, indicating that they are the product of erosion of Paleoproterozoic crust. The data indicate that the Araí rift system was established on crust that had just become stable after the Paleoproterozoic orogeny.As rochas supracrustais do Grupo Araí, e os granitos tipo-A associados, representam um rift continental paleo-mesoproterozóico. Duas famílias de granitos são identificadas: a mais antiga (ca. 1,77 Ga forma pequenos plutons circulares enquanto a mais jovem (ca. 1,58 Ga, constitui corpos maiores e deformados. Dados isotópicos Sr-Nd indicam que o magmatismo félsico é predominantemente o produto de re-fusão de crosta de idade paleoproterozóica. Razões 87Sr/86Sr iniciais das duas famílias são ca. 0,726 e 0,720. A maioria das idades modelo T DM caem no intervalo entre 2,58 e 1,80 Ga e os valores de épsilonND(T se distribuem entre +3.6 e -11.9. Rochas vulcânicas do Grupo Araí são bimodais, com basaltos e dacitos/riolitos intercalados em sedimentos continentais. As vulcânicas félsicas mostram

  5. European Cenozoic rift system

    Ziegler, Peter A.


    The European Cenozoic rift system extends from the coast of the North Sea to the Mediterranean over a distance of some 1100 km; it finds its southern prolongation in the Valencia Trough and a Plio-Pleistocene volcanic chain crossing the Atlas ranges. Development of this mega-rift was paralleled by orogenic activity in the Alps and Pyrenees. Major rift domes, accompanied by subsidence reversal of their axial grabens, developed 20-40 Ma after beginning of rifting. Uplift of the Rhenish Shield is related to progressive thermal lithospheric thinning; the Vosges-Black Forest and the Massif Central domes are probably underlain by asthenoliths emplaced at the crust/mantle boundary. Evolution of this rift system, is thought to be governed by the interaction of the Eurasian and African plates and by early phases of a plate-boundary reorganization that may lead to the break-up of the present continent assembly.

  6. Reassessment of petrogenesis of Carboniferous–Early Permian rift-related volcanic rocks in the Chinese Tianshan and its neighboring areas

    Linqi Xia


    Full Text Available The Carboniferous−Early Permian rift-related volcanic successions, covering large areas in the Chinese Tianshan and its adjacent areas, make up a newly recognized important Phanerozoic large igneous province in the world, which can be further divided into two sub-provinces: Tianshan and Tarim. The regional unconformity of Lower Carboniferous upon basement or pre-Carboniferous rocks, the ages (360–351 Ma of the youngest ophiolite and the peak of subduction metamorphism of high pressure–low temperature metamorphic belt and the occurrence of Ni-Cu-bearing mafic-ultramafic intrusion with age of ∼352 Ma and A-type granite with age of ∼358 Ma reveal that the final closure of the Paleo-Asian Ocean might take place in the Early Mississippian. Our summation shows that at least four criteria, being normally used to identify ancient asthenosphere upwelling (or mantle plumes, are met for this large igneous province: (1 surface uplift prior to magmatism; (2 being associated with continental rifting and breakup events; (3 chemical characteristics of asthenosphere (or plume derived basalts; (4 close links to large-scale mineralization and the uncontaminated basalts, being analogous to those of many “ore-bearing” large igneous provinces, display Sr-Nd isotopic variations between plume and EM1 geochemical signatures. These suggest that a Carboniferous asthenosphere upwelling and an Early Permian plume played the central role in the generation of the Tianshan–Tarim (central Asia large igneous province.

  7. Classification of the rift zones of venus: Rift valleys and graben belts

    Guseva, E. N.


    The spatial distribution of rift zones of Venus, their topographic configuration, morphometric parameters, and the type of volcanism associating with rifts were analyzed. This allowed the main characteristic features of rifts to be revealed and two different types of rift-forming structures, serving for classification of rift zones as rift valleys and graben belts, to be isolated. These structural types (facies) of rift zones are differently expressed in the relief: rift valleys are individual deep (several kilometers) W-shaped canyons, while graben belts are clusters of multiple V-shaped and rather shallow (hundreds of meters) depressions. Graben belts are longer and wider, as compared to rift valleys. Rift valleys are spatially associated with dome-shaped volcanic rises and large volcanos (concentrated volcanic sources), while graben belts do not exhibit such associations. Volcanic activity in the graben belts are presented by spacious lava fields with no apparent sources of volcanism. Graben belts and rift valleys were formed during the Atlian Period of geologic history of Venus, and they characterized the tectonic style of the planet at the late stages of its geologic evolution. Formation of this or that structural facies of the rift zones of Venus were probably governed by the thickness of the lithosphere, its rheological properties, and the development degree of the mantle diapirs associating with rift zones.

  8. A kinematic model for the Plio-Quaternary evolution of the Tyrrhenian Apenninic system: implications for rifting processes and volcanism

    Turco, E.; Zuppetta, A.


    During the frontal accretion due to the Late Miocene-Quaternary thrusting, the interior of the Apenninic chain underwent large-scale extension which produced the opening of the Tyrrhenian Oceanic Basin, a back-arc basin in respect to the late Cenozoic Apenninic chain, and the onset of the Quaternary volcanic activity in the Campanian Plain and more generally in the Tyrrhenian area. To outline the space/time distribution and the geotectonic setting of the Tyrrhenian volcanics we approached the problem from a kinematic point of view. A synthesis of the available geological and geophysical data leads us to suggest that the progressive migration of the Apenninic Arcs is responsible for the extension phenomena which took place during the last 5 Ma. At first, the extension resulted from the kinematic interaction between the Northern Apenninic Arc and the Southern Apenninic Arc during the Late Pliocene. Then, from the Early Pleistocene the extension was controlled by the SE migration of the Southern arc only, and therefore it can be regarded as part of the general Southern Tyrrhenian extension phenomenon. Due to the intense thinning, the isotherms migrated upward very rapidly within the Toscana, Latium and Campania lithosphere where the melting point was reached, giving rise to the onset of volcanic activity at the end of the Early Pleistocene.

  9. Influence of margin segmentation and anomalous volcanism upon the break-up of the Hatton Bank rifted margin, west of the UK

    Elliott, G. M.; Parson, L. M.


    The Hatton Bank margin, flanking the Iceland Basin is a widely cited example of a volcanic rifted margin. Prior to this study insights into the break-up history of the margin have been limited to profiles in the north and south, yet whilst valuable, the along margin tectono-magmatic variability has not been revealed. Over 5660 line km of high quality reflection seismic profiles with supplementary multibeam bathymetry were collected to support the UK's claim to Hatton region under the United Nations Convention on Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). Integration of this new data with existing profiles, allowed the margin to be divided into three segments, each of which are flanked by oceanic crust with a smooth upper surface and internal dipping reflectors. The southernmost segment is characterised by a series of inner and outer seaward dipping reflector (SDR) packages, which are separated by an outer high feature. The outer SDR are truncated by Endymion Spur, a chain of steep sided, late stage volcanic cones linked with necks. The central sector has no inner SDR package and is characterised by the presence of a highly intruded continental block, the Hatton Bank Block (HBB). The northern sector is adjacent to Lousy Bank, with a wider region of SDR recognised than to the south and a high amount of volcanic cones imaged. The variations in the distribution of the SDR's along the margin, the presence of the HBB and Endymion Spur all suggest that the break-up process was not uniform alongstrike. The division of the margin into three sectors reveals that structural segmentation played an important role in producing the variations along the margin. Break- up initiated in the south and progressed north producing the SDR packages witnessed, when the HBB was encountered the focus of break-up moved seaward of the block. The northern sector was closer to the Iceland Hotspot and hence a greater amount of volcanism is encountered. The smooth oceanic basement also indicates a high thermal flux

  10. Spatial distribution of cones and satellite-detected lineaments in the Pali Aike Volcanic Field (southernmost Patagonia): insights into the tectonic setting of a Neogene rift system

    Mazzarini, Francesco; D'Orazio, Massimo


    The relationships between the distribution and morphometric features of eruptive structures (scoria and spatter cones, maar, tuff rings) and the fracture network were investigated in the Pliocene-Quaternary Pali Aike Volcanic Field (southernmost Patagonia, Argentina-Chile). The alkali basaltic/basanitic magmas which erupted in this area have nearly primary magma compositions and often bear mantle xenoliths; hence magma ascent from deep-seated reservoirs was probably very fast, with no significant stagnation at crustal levels. Field surveys and satellite image analysis led to the identification of up to 467 eruptive structures and four main NW-SE, NE-SW, E-W and N-S fracture systems. The spatial distribution of eruptive cones and fractures was investigated through the computation of power-law exponents ( Df) for self-similar clustering. The self-similarity of cones and fractures was defined between lower and upper cut-offs which were in turn related to the thickness of the fractured mechanical layer. The fractal character of cones and fracture distribution (clustering) in the Pali Aike Volcanic Field area was thus correlated with crustal thickness. The self-similarity of fractures was used to establish the relative chronology of the detected fracture systems. The self-similar clustering exponent is highest in the E-W and NW-SE fracture systems ( Df=1.78 and 1.77, respectively), and lowest in the N-S system ( Df=1.65). The self-similar clustering of eruptive structures is well defined ( Df=1.45). The intense volcano-tectonic activity in the Pali Aike area marks a major Pliocene-Quaternary phase in the development of the Magellan Neogene Rift System.

  11. Recent eruptive episodes of the Rungwe volcanic field (Tanzania) recorded in lacustrine sediments of the Northern malawi rift

    Williams, T. M.; Henney, P. J.; Owen, R. B.


    Discrete ash horizons in Holocene sediments from northern Lake Malawi provide evidence of six eruptive episodes within the nearby Rungwe Volcanic Field between c.9000-360 BP. Rare earth element (REE) analyses show the ash layers to be strongly enriched in La, Ce, Pr, Nd, Sm, Tb, Dy, Er, Tm, Yb and Lu, with low Eu/Eu∗ and high La N/Sm N values, relative to the surrounding muds. Mixing calculations suggest possible affinities between the Rungwe ash emissions and silicic volcanics from other important Quaternary centres (e.g. Naivasha) with respect to HREE geochemistry. The LREE spectra are less comparable and may indicate a less fractionated ash assemblage for Rungwe Field. In the absence of clear in situ evidence regarding the timing and frequency of Holocene eruptions at Rungwe, the Lake Malawi sediments may prove a valuable reconstructive tool. However, the direction and extent of ash dispersal is strongly controlled by wind/climatic factors and the retention of a complete record at any single location is unlikely.

  12. Contribution of the FUTUREVOLC project to the study of segmented lateral dyke growth in the 2014 rifting event at Bárðarbunga volcanic system, Iceland

    Sigmundsson, Freysteinn; Hooper, Andrew; Hreinsdóttir, Sigrún; Vogfjörd, Kristín S.; Ófeigsson, Benedikt; Rafn Heimisson, Elías; Dumont, Stéphanie; Parks, Michelle; Spaans, Karsten; Guðmundsson, Gunnar B.; Drouin, Vincent; Árnadóttir, Thóra; Jónsdóttir, Kristín; Gudmundsson, Magnús T.; Samsonov, Sergey; Brandsdóttir, Bryndís; White, Robert S.; Ágústsdóttir, Thorbjörg; Björnsson, Helgi; Bean, Christopher J.


    The FUTUREVOLC project (a 26-partner project funded by FP7 Environment Programme of the European Commission, addressing topic "Long-term monitoring experiment in geologically active regions of Europe prone to natural hazards: the Supersite concept) set aims to (i) establish an innovative volcano monitoring system and strategy, (ii) develop new methods for near real-time integration of multi-parametric datasets, (iii) apply a seamless transdisciplinary approach to further scientific understanding of magmatic processes, and (iv) to improve delivery, quality and timeliness of transdisciplinary information from monitoring scientists to civil protection. The project duration is 1 October 2012 - 31 March 2016. Unrest and volcanic activity since August 2014 at one of the focus areas of the project in Iceland, at the Bárðarbunga volcanic system, near the middle of the project duration, has offered unique opportunities for this project. On 16 August 2014 an intense seismic swarm started in Bárðarbunga, the beginning of a major volcano-tectonic rifting event forming over 45 km long dyke extending from the caldera to Holuhraun lava field outside the northern margin of Vatnajökull. A large basaltic, effusive fissure eruption began in Holuhraun on 31 August which had by January formed a lava field with a volume in excess of one cubic kilometre. We document how the FUTUREVOLC project has contributed to the study and response to the subsurface dyke formation, through increased seismic and geodetic coverage and joint interpreation of the data. The dyke intrusion in the Bárðarbunga volcanic system, grew laterally for over 45 km at a variable rate, with an influence of topography on the direction of propagation. Barriers at the ends of each segment were overcome by the build-up of pressure in the dyke end; then a new segment formed and dyke lengthening temporarily peaked. The dyke evolution, which occurred over 14 days, was revealed by propagating seismicity, ground

  13. Volcanism and sedimentation along the western margin of the Rio Grande rift between caldera-forming eruptions of the Jemez Mountains volcanic field, north-central New Mexico, USA

    Jacobs, Elaine P.; WoldeGabriel, Giday; Kelley, Shari A.; Broxton, David; Ridley, John


    The Cerro Toledo Formation (CTF), a series of intracaldera rhyolitic dome complexes and their associated extracaldera tephras and epiclastic sedimentary deposits, records the dynamic interplay between volcanic, tectonic, and geomorphic processes that were occurring along the western margin of the Rio Grande rift between major caldera-forming eruptions of the Bandelier Tuff 1.65-1.26 Ma. The Alamo Canyon and Pueblo Canyon Members differ significantly despite deposition within a few kilometers of each other on the Pajarito Plateau. These differences highlight spatial distinctions in vent sources, eruptive styles, and depositional environments along the eastern side of the Jemez Mountains volcanic field during this ca. 400,000 year interval. Intercalated pyroclastic fall deposits and sandstones of the Pueblo Canyon Member reflect deposition with a basin. Thick Alamo Canyon Member deposits of block-and-ash-flow tuff and pyroclastic fall deposits fill a paleovalley carved into coarse grained sedimentary units reflecting deposition along the mountain front. Chemistry and ages of glass from fall deposits together with clast lithologies of sedimentary units, allow correlation of outcrops, subsurface units, and sources. Dates on pyroclastic fall deposits from Alamo Canyon record deep incision into the underlying Otowi Member in the southern part of the Pajarito Plateau within 100 k.y. of the Toledo caldera-forming eruption. Reconstruction of the CTF surface shows that this period of rapid incision was followed by aggradation where sediments largely filled pre-existing paleocanyons. Complex sequences within the upper portion of the Otowi Member in outcrop and in the subsurface record changes in the style of eruptive activity during the waning stages of the Toledo caldera-forming eruption.

  14. Subglacial volcanic activity above a lateral dyke path during the 2014-2015 Bárdarbunga-Holuhraun rifting episode, Iceland

    Reynolds, Hannah I.; Gudmundsson, Magnús T.; Högnadóttir, Thórdís; Magnússon, Eyjólfur; Pálsson, Finnur


    The rifting episode associated with the Bárdarbunga-Holuhraun eruption in 2014-2015 included the first observations of major dyke propagation under ice. Three shallow ice depressions (ice cauldrons) with volumes ranging from 1 to 18 million m3 formed in Dyngjujökull glacier above the 48-km-long lateral path of the magma, at 4, 7 and 12 km from the northern glacier edge. Aircraft-based radar altimetry profiling was used to map the evolution of the cauldrons and construct a time series of the heat transfer rates. Out of the three scenarios explored: (1) onset or increase of hydrothermal activity, (2) convection within vertical fissures filled with water overlying intruded magma and (3) subglacial eruptions, the last option emerges as the only plausible mechanism to explain the rapid heat transfer observed in a location far from known geothermal areas. The thermal signals at two of the cauldrons are consistent with effusive subglacial eruptions. The formation of the northernmost cauldron was more rapid, indicating faster heat transfer rates. Radio-echo sounding data indicate that in contrast to the other two cauldrons, an intrusion of eruptive products occurred into the glacier, reaching 50-60 m above bedrock with the increased magma-ice contact explaining the more rapid heat transfer. We propose that the 2-m widening associated with graben formation increased the groundwater storage capacity of the bedrock, creating space for the meltwater to be stored, explaining the absence of meltwater pulses draining from Dyngjujökull.

  15. Softening of sub-continental lithosphere prior rifting: Evidence from clinopyroxene chemistry in peridotite xenoliths from Natash volcanic province, SE Egypt

    Abu El-Rus, M. A.; Chazot, G.; Vannucci, R.; Gahlan, H. A.; Boghdady, G. Y.; Paquette, J.-L.


    Major and trace element compositions were determined for well-preserved diopside relics in highly altered mantle xenoliths from Natash volcanic province, south Eastern Desert of Egypt, to unravel the major magmatic processes that occurred within the lithospheric mantle long time before the Red Sea rift. The diopside shows a limited compositional range as for mg# (0.89-0.92), Al2O3 (3.52-5.60 wt%), andTiO2 (0.15-0.35 wt%), whereas it is characterised by a larger variability as for Na2O (0.23-1.83 wt%) and, in particular the trace elements. The latter identify two main diopside types: 1) CPX-I has low abundances of incompatible elements, spoon-like REE patterns, small negative anomalies in Ti and Zr and a positive anomaly in Sr; and 2) CPX-II has high abundances in incompatible elements, REE patterns with steady enrichment from HREE to LREE patterns and marked negative anomalies in Ti and Zr. The range of REE patterns in the mantle section can be explained by 7-22% batch melting of the primitive mantle followed by varying degrees of trace element chromatographic exchange. CPX-I underwent only small-scale reactive porous flow metasomatism at the percolation front, whereas CPX-II resulted from large-scale rock-melt interaction close to the melt source. Trace element abundances of CPX-II suggest equilibration with carbonatite-like melts that bear close similarities with the carbonatites that enriched the lithosphere in the southern part of the Arabian plate. The similarity of the P-T gradients recorded by the Natash and southern part of Arabian lithospheres, as well as their re-fertilisation by similar, carbonatite-like agents, is consistent with the presence of a mantle plume at the base of the lithosphere after accretion of the Arabian-Nubian Shield in Late Precambrian. The plume material was fossilized due to secular cooling and became part of the lithospheric mantle before the eruption of the Natash volcanic in Late Cretaceous.

  16. A Cambrian Arc Built on the Neoproterozoic Rifted Margin of Gondwana

    Musgrave, R. J.


    Cambrian convergence along the northeastern side of the Curnamona Craton, the Gondwana margin in southeastern Australia, resulted in the development of the Delamerian Orogen. A Neoproterozoic rifted margin, marked by the alkalic Mount Arrowsmith Volcanics, forms the substrate on which is built a NE-facing Cambrian arc, complete with a clearly delineated inner imbricate accretionary prism (the Wonnaminta Zone) and outer thin-skinned wedge (the Kayrunnera Zone). Arc volcanism, represented by the calc-alkaline Mount Wright Volcanics, exhibits mixed arc-rift geochemistry. Interpretation and modelling of magnetic data reveals a chain of volcanic edifices of the Mount Wright Arc, now below 3 to 7 km of Devonian sandstones in the Bancannia Trough. Remarkably, a simple rotation around an Euler pole reconstructs the Wonnaminta Zone against the craton, and aligns structural elements on the two sides of the trough. Arc volcanism evidently occupied a rift in marginal continental crust, and the geometry, geochemistry and geophysical properties of the Mount Wright Arc are closely analogous to the Taupo Zone of New Zealand. Rifting of the arc divided Delamerian structures, indicating that at least part of the Delamerian deformation developed in a subduction accretion setting, rather than in some terminal collision. Below the Wonnaminta Zone a 3 to 5 km thick body can be traced as a large magnetic source along the length of the zone. Overridden by the thrust stack of the accretionary prism, this body is mostly planar and dips towards the east, although it is deformed into a broad antiform in the central part of the zone. Physical properties suggest that this body may be a thick rift-volcanic pile equivalent to the Mount Arrowsmith Volcanics. In the southern part of the belt a re-entrant in the Wonnaminta Zone faces a large magnetic anomaly sourced in the basement of the Kayrunnera Zone. The geometry of the re-entrant, and the development of Silurian and Devonian basins over the

  17. Catastrophic volcanism

    Lipman, Peter W.


    Since primitive times, catastrophes due to volcanic activity have been vivid in the mind of man, who knew that his activities in many parts of the world were threatened by lava flows, mudflows, and ash falls. Within the present century, increasingly complex interactions between volcanism and the environment, on scales not previously experienced historically, have been detected or suspected from geologic observations. These include enormous hot pyroclastic flows associated with collapse at source calderas and fed by eruption columns that reached the stratosphere, relations between huge flood basalt eruptions at hotspots and the rifting of continents, devastating laterally-directed volcanic blasts and pyroclastic surges, great volcanic-generated tsunamis, climate modification from volcanic release of ash and sulfur aerosols into the upper atmosphere, modification of ocean circulation by volcanic constructs and attendent climatic implications, global pulsations in intensity of volcanic activity, and perhaps triggering of some intense terrestrial volcanism by planetary impacts. Complex feedback between volcanic activity and additional seemingly unrelated terrestrial processes likely remains unrecognized. Only recently has it become possible to begin to evaluate the degree to which such large-scale volcanic processes may have been important in triggering or modulating the tempo of faunal extinctions and other evolutionary events. In this overview, such processes are examined from the viewpoint of a field volcanologist, rather than as a previous participant in controversies concerning the interrelations between extinctions, impacts, and volcanism.

  18. Venus: Geology of Beta Regio rift system

    Nikishin, A. M.; Borozdin, V. K.; Bobina, N. N.


    Beta Regio is characterized by the existence of rift structures. We compiled new geologic maps of Beta Regio according to Magellan data. There are many large uplifted tesserae on beta upland. These tesserae are partly buried by younger volcanic cover. We can conclude, using these observations, that Beta upland formed mainly due to lithospheric tectonic uplifting and was only partly constructed by volcanism. Theia Mons is the center of the Beta rift system. Many rift belts are distributed radially to Theia Mons. Typical widths of rifts are 40-160 km. Rift valleys are structurally represented by crustal grabens or half-grabens. There are symmetrical and asymmetrical rifts. Many rifts have shoulder uplifts up to 0.5-1 km high and 40-60 km wide. Preliminary analysis for rift valley structural cross sections lead to the conclusion that rifts originated due to 5-10 percent crustal extension. Many rifts traverse Beta upland and spread to the surrounding lowlands. We can assume because of these data that Beta rift system has an active-passive origin. It formed due to regional tectonic lithospheric extension. Rifting was accelerated by upper-mantle hot spot origination under the center of passive extension (under the Beta Regio).

  19. Shallow-source aeromagnetic anomalies observed over the West Antarctic Ice Sheet compared with coincident bed topography from radar ice sounding - New evidence for glacial "removal" of subglacially erupted late Cenozoic rift-related volcanic edifices

    Behrendt, John C.; Blankenship, D.D.; Morse, D.L.; Bell, R.E.


    Aeromagnetic and radar ice sounding results from the 1991-1997 Central West Antarctica (CWA) aerogeophysical survey over part of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) and subglacial area of the volcanically active West Antarctic rift system have enabled detailed examination of specific anomaly sources. These anomalies, previously interpreted as caused by late Cenozoic subglacial volcanic centers, are compared to newly available glacial bed-elevation data from the radar ice sounding compilation of the entire area of the aeromagnetic survey to test this hypothesis in detail. We examined about 1000 shallow-source magnetic anomalies for bedrock topographic expression. Using very conservative criteria, we found over 400 specific anomalies which correlate with bed topography directly beneath each anomaly. We interpret these anomalies as indicative of the relative abundance of volcanic anomalies having shallow magnetic sources. Of course, deeper source magnetic anomalies are present, but these have longer wavelengths, lower gradients and mostly lower amplitudes from those caused by the highly magnetic late Cenozoic volcanic centers. The great bulk of these >400 (40-1200-nT) anomaly sources at the base of the ice have low bed relief (60-600 m, with about 80%10 million years ago. Eighteen of the anomalies examined, about half concentrated in the area of the WAIS divide, have high-topographic expression (as great as 400 m above sea level) and high bed relief (up to 1500 m). All of these high-topography anomaly sources at the base of the ice would isostatically rebound to elevations above sea level were the ice removed. We interpret these 18 anomaly sources as evidence of subaerial eruption of volcanoes whose topography was protected from erosion by competent volcanic flows similar to prominent volcanic peaks that are exposed above the surface of the WAIS. Further, we infer these volcanoes as possibly erupted at a time when the WAIS was absent. In contrast, at the other extreme

  20. Shallow-source aeromagnetic anomalies observed over the West Antarctic Ice Sheet compared with coincident bed topography from radar ice sounding—new evidence for glacial "removal" of subglacially erupted late Cenozoic rift-related volcanic edifices

    Behrendt, John C.; Blankenship, Donald D.; Morse, David L.; Bell, Robin E.


    Aeromagnetic and radar ice sounding results from the 1991-1997 Central West Antarctica (CWA) aerogeophysical survey over part of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) and subglacial area of the volcanically active West Antarctic rift system have enabled detailed examination of specific anomaly sources. These anomalies, previously interpreted as caused by late Cenozoic subglacial volcanic centers, are compared to newly available glacial bed-elevation data from the radar ice sounding compilation of the entire area of the aeromagnetic survey to test this hypothesis in detail. We examined about 1000 shallow-source magnetic anomalies for bedrock topographic expression. Using very conservative criteria, we found over 400 specific anomalies which correlate with bed topography directly beneath each anomaly. We interpret these anomalies as indicative of the relative abundance of volcanic anomalies having shallow magnetic sources. Of course, deeper source magnetic anomalies are present, but these have longer wavelengths, lower gradients and mostly lower amplitudes from those caused by the highly magnetic late Cenozoic volcanic centers. The great bulk of these >400 (40-1200-nT) anomaly sources at the base of the ice have low bed relief (60-600 m, with about 80%WAIS >10 million years ago. Eighteen of the anomalies examined, about half concentrated in the area of the WAIS divide, have high-topographic expression (as great as 400 m above sea level) and high bed relief (up to 1500 m). All of these high-topography anomaly sources at the base of the ice would isostatically rebound to elevations above sea level were the ice removed. We interpret these 18 anomaly sources as evidence of subaerial eruption of volcanoes whose topography was protected from erosion by competent volcanic flows similar to prominent volcanic peaks that are exposed above the surface of the WAIS. Further, we infer these volcanoes as possibly erupted at a time when the WAIS was absent. In contrast, at the other

  1. Laboratory Studies of Ice Nucleation on Volcanic Ash

    Tolbert, M. A.; Schill, G. P.; Genareau, K. D.


    Ice nucleation on volcanic ash controls both ash aggregation and cloud glaciation, which affect human respiratory health, atmospheric transport, and global climate. We have performed laboratory studies of the depositional and immersion freezing efficiency of three distinct samples of volcanic ash using Raman Microscopy coupled to an environmental cell. Ash from the Fuego (Basaltic Ash, Guatemala), Soufriere Hills (Andesetic Ash, Montserrat), and Taupo (Rhyolitic Ash, New Zealand) volcanoes were chosen to represent different geographical locations and silica content. All ash samples were quantitatively analyzed for both percent crystallinity and mineralogy using X-ray diffraction. We find that all three samples of volcanic ash are excellent depositional ice nuclei, nucleating ice at ice saturation ratios of 1.05 ± 0.1. For immersion freezing, however, only the Taupo ash exhibited efficient heterogeneous ice nucleation activity. Similar to recent studies on mineral dust, we suggest that the mineralogy of volcanic ash may dictate its ice nucleation activity in the immersion mode.

  2. Giant rafted pumice blocks from the most recent eruption of Taupo volcano, New Zealand: Insights from palaeomagnetic and textural data

    von Lichtan, I. J.; White, J. D. L.; Manville, V.; Ohneiser, C.


    Giant blocks of pumice lie strewn along a former shoreline of intracaldera Lake Taupo, New Zealand, and are the sole subaerial evidence of the most recent volcanism at the Taupo supervolcano. Geochemically they are identical to material erupted during the complex and multiphase 1.8 ka Taupo eruption, which they post-date by one to two decades. The blocks, some of which are > 10 m long, show complex jointing patterns indicative of both surface chilling and continued interior expansion, as well as heterogeneous vesicularity, with dense rims (mean density 917 kg/m3) grading via an intervening transition zone (mean density 844 kg/m3) into a more highly vesicular interior (mean density 815 kg/m3). Analysis of thermal demagnetisation data indicates significant reorientation of the blocks as they cooled through a series of blocking temperatures. Some parts of block rims cooled to below 580 °C well before emplacement on the shore, whereas other parts in the interior and transition zones, which cooled more slowly, acquired different orientations before stranding. Some block interiors cooled after blocks were finally deposited, and record the direction of the 1.8 ka field. The blocks are believed to be derived from one or both of a pair of rhyolitic lava domes that developed on the bed of Lake Taupo several decades after the climactic Taupo eruption over the inferred vent area. These, and similar giant rafted pumice blocks in other marine and lacustrine settings raise a number of questions about how volatile-rich felsic magma can be erupted underwater with only limited thermal fragmentation. Furthermore, the prolonged flotation of out-sized fragments of vesiculated magma formed during subaqueous dome-growth contrasts with the rapid sinking of smaller pieces of hot plinian pumice under laboratory conditions. The genesis of pumice forming the blocks is not entirely clear. Most simply the blocks may represent part of a vesiculated carapace of a growing lava dome, broken loose

  3. Rio Grande Rift: History of Tectonic Opening and Magmatism

    van Wijk, J.; Axen, G. J.; Koning, D.


    We describe the mid-Miocene to present opening history of the Rio Grande rift from tectonic subsidence patterns, published Quaternary fault activity, and spatial, temporal and geochemical distributions of volcanism. Rift opening was quite fast until 8 Ma, with tectonic subsidence rates comparable to those of the pre-rupture phase of rifted continent margins, but post-8 Ma rates are slower in all studied localities. Integration of age control reveals that a rift-margin unconformity formed between 8.5 and 3.5 Ma, its exact duration varying depending on location. This partly coincides with uplift of the Ogallala formation in the western Great Plains. The widespread extent of the unconformity suggest that the unconformity records a region-wide dynamic uplift event, possibly resulting from mantle upwelling below the region. This is supported by geoid analyses. The unconformity postdates a change in relative plate motion between the North American and Pacific plates, which may account for the post-8 Ma decrease in subsidence rates. Distribution of Quaternary fault activity is concentrated on the border faults in the northern basins where the rift is in a juvenile stage, but distributed on intra-basin faults further south in the rift where the crust is thinned more. Our analyses show that volcanism in the Rio Grande rift has been of mainly basaltic composition since the Miocene; volcanism during early rifting ranged from basalt to rhyolite. Volcanism has not been evenly distributed in the rift, but concentrated in three large volcanic fields that were located outside of the main rift prior to rift opening, and along the Jemez Lineament which crosses the Rio Grande rift, with sporadic volcanic activity elsewhere. The southern portion of the rift has experienced less volcanic activity than the northern rift, perhaps because it is underlain by fast seismic wave velocity upper mantle that may be linked to colder or compositionally different (Farallon plate subduction related

  4. Magmatism in rifting and basin formation

    Thybo, H.


    Whether heating and magmatism cause rifting or rifting processes cause magmatic activity is highly debated. The stretching factor in rift zones can be estimated as the relation between the initial and the final crustal thickness provided that the magmatic addition to the crust is insignificant. Recent research demonstrates substantial magmatic intrusion into the crust in the form of sill like structures in the lowest crust in the presently active Kenya and Baikal rift zones and the DonBas palaeo-rift zone in Ukraine. This result may be surprising as the Kenya Rift is associated with large amounts of volcanic products, whereas the Baikal Rift shows very little volcanism. Identification of large amounts of magmatic intrusion into the crust has strong implications for estimation of stretching factor, which in the case of Baikal Rift Zone is around 1.7 but direct estimation gives a value of 1.3-1.4 if the magmatic addition is not taken into account. This may indicate that much more stretching has taken place on rift systems than hitherto believed. Wide sedimentary basins may form around aborted rifts due to loading of the lithosphere by sedimentary and volcanic in-fill of the rift. This type of subsidence will create wide basins without faulting. The Norwegian- Danish basin in the North Sea area also has subsided gradually during the Triassic without faulting, but only few rift structures have been identified below the Triassic sequences. We have identified several mafic intrusions in the form of large batholiths, typically more than 100 km long, 20-40 km wide and 20 km thick. The associated heating would have lifted the surface by about 2 km, which may have been eroded before cooling. The subsequent contraction due to solidification and cooling would create subsidence in a geometry similar to basins that developed by loading. These new aspects of magmatism will be discussed with regard to rifting and basin formation.

  5. Crustal-scale recycling in caldera complexes and rift zones along the Yellowstone hotspot track: O and Hf isotopic evidence in diverse zircons from voluminous rhyolites of the Picabo volcanic field, Idaho

    Drew, Dana L.; Bindeman, Ilya N.; Watts, Kathryn E.; Schmitt, Axel K.; Fu, Bin; McCurry, Michael


    followed by rapid batch assembly prior to eruption. However, due to the greater abundance of low-δ18O rhyolites at Picabo, the eruptive framework may reflect an intertwined history of caldera collapse and coeval Basin and Range rifting and hydrothermal alteration. We speculate that the source rocks with pre-existing low-δ18O alteration may be related to: (1) deeply buried and unexposed older deposits of Picabo-age or Twin Falls-age low-δ18O volcanics; and/or (2) regionally-abundant late Eocene Challis volcanics, which were hydrothermally altered near the surface prior to or during peak Picabo magmatism. Basin and Range extension, specifically the formation of metamorphic core complexes exposed in the region, could have facilitated the generation of low-δ18O magmas by exhuming heated rocks and creating the large water-rock ratios necessary for shallow hydrothermal alteration of tectonically (rift zones) and volcanically (calderas) buried volcanic rocks. These interpretations highlight the major processes by which supereruptive volumes of magma are generated in the SRP, mechanisms applicable to producing rhyolites worldwide that are facilitated by plume driven volcanism and extensional tectonics.

  6. Structure of the central Terror Rift, western Ross Sea, Antarctica

    Hall, Jerome; Wilson, Terry; Henrys, Stuart


    The Terror Rift is a zone of post-middle Miocene faulting and volcanism along the western margin of the West Antarctic Rift System. A new seismic data set from NSF geophysical cruise NBP04-01, integrated with the previous dataset to provide higher spatial resolution, has been interpreted in this study in order to improve understanding of the architecture and history of the Terror Rift. The Terror Rift contains two components, a structurally-controlled rollover anticlinal arch intruded by younger volcanic bodies and an associated synclinal basin. Offsets and trend changes in fault patterns have been identified, coincident with shifts in the location of depocenters that define rift sub-basins, indicating that the Terror Rift is segmented by transverse structures. Multiple phases of faulting all post-date 17 Ma, including faults cutting the seafloor surface, indicating Neogene rifting and possible modern activity.

  7. Distinguishing styles of explosive eruptions at Erebus, Redoubt and Taupo volcanoes using multivariate analysis of ash morphometrics

    Avery, Meredith R.; Panter, Kurt S.; Gorsevski, Pece V.


    The style and dynamics of volcanic eruptions control the level and type of hazards posed for local populations and can have a temporary long-range impact on climate if eruptions are extremely energetic. The purpose of this study is to provide a statistical approach to ash morphometrics in order to provide a means by which to evaluate diverse eruption styles and mechanisms of fragmentation. The methodology presented can be applied to tephra deposits worldwide and may aid volcanic hazard mitigation by better defining a volcano's history of explosive behavior. Ash-sized grains were collected from tephra deposits on Mount Erebus, Antarctica (imaged by scanning electron microscopy. Morphometric properties were determined using image processing software and then evaluated by several statistical methods. Discriminant analysis of all parameters was found to be the best at differentiating the tephra deposits and allowing for interpretation of eruptive styles in conjunction with field observations. A linear array of data forming a positive slope in factor space, which explains > 99% of the total data variance, is interpreted to represent a continuum between fragmentations involving water-magma interaction ("wet") to grains that were formed predominately by magmatic ("dry") fragmentation mechanisms. The Taupo Hatepe ash, which was deposited from a phreatoplinian eruption column, has the highest factor values in the array, which signifies, in part, more rectangular/blocky morphologies with smooth grain edges. Factor values for the 2009 Redoubt eruption (events 2-4) are nearly as high as Hatepe ash and based on this we suggest that it was produced, in part, by phreatomagmatic fragmentation. This is supported by field observations that document melting and eruption through glacial ice during the early phases of the 2009 activity. Redoubt ash grains from later stages of the same eruption (events 9-18) show a significant shift to lower values in factor space (more irregular

  8. The mesoproterozoic midcontinent rift system, Lake Superior region, USA

    Ojakangas, R.W.; Morey, G.B.; Green, J.C.


    Exposures in the Lake Superior region, and associated geophysical evidence, show that a 2000 km-long rift system developed within the North American craton ??? 1109-1087 Ma, the age span of the most of the volcanic rocks. This system is characterized by immense volumes of mafic igneous rocks, mostly subaerial plateau basalts, generated in two major pulses largely by a hot mantle plume. A new ocean basin was nearly formed before rifting ceased, perhaps due to the remote effect of the Grenville continental collision to the east. Broad sagging/subsidence, combined with a system of axial half-grabens separated along the length of the rift by accommodation zones, provided conditions for the accumulation of as much as 20 km of volcanic rocks and as much as 10 km of post-rift clastic sediments, both along the rift axis and in basins flanking a central, post-volcanic horst. Pre-rift mature, quartzose sandstones imply little or no uplift prior to the onset of rift volcanism. Early post-rift red-bed sediments consist almost entirely of intrabasinally derived volcanic sediment deposited in alluvial fan to fluvial settings; the exception is one gray to black carbon-bearing lacustrine(?) unit. This early sedimentation phase was followed by broad crustal sagging and deposition of progressively more mature red-bed, fluvial sediments with an extra-basinal provenance. ?? 2001 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Transition from alkaline to calc-alkaline volcanism during evolution of the Paleoproterozoic Francevillian basin of eastern Gabon (Western Central Africa)

    Thiéblemont, Denis; Bouton, Pascal; Préat, Alain; Goujou, Jean-Christian; Tegyey, Monique; Weber, Francis; Ebang Obiang, Michel; Joron, Jean Louis; Treuil, Michel


    We report new geochemical data for the volcanic and subvolcanic rocks associated with the evolution of the Francevillian basin of eastern Gabon during Paleoproterozoic times (c. 2.1-2 Ga). Filling of this basin has proceeded through four main sedimentary or volcano-sedimentary episodes, namely FA, FB, FC and FD. Volcanism started during the FB episode being present only in the northern part of the basin (Okondja sub-basin). This volcanism is ultramafic to trachytic in composition and displays a rather constant alkaline geochemical signature. This signature is typical of a within-plate environment, consistent with the rift-setting generally postulated for the Francevillian basin during the FB period. Following FB, the FC unit is 10-20 m-thick silicic horizon (jasper) attesting for a massive input of silica in the basin. Following FC, the FD unit is a c. 200-400 m-thick volcano-sedimentary sequence including felsic tuffs and epiclastic rocks. The geochemical signatures of these rocks are totally distinct from those of the FB alkaline lavas. High Th/Ta and La/Ta ratios attest for a calc-alkaline signature and slight fractionation between heavy rare-earth suggests melting at a rather low pressure. Such characteristics are comparable to those of felsic lavas associated with the Taupo zone of New Zealand, a modern ensialic back-arc basin. Following FD, the FE detrital unit is defined only in the Okondja region, probably associated with a late-stage collapse of the northern part of the basin. It is suggested that the alkaline to calc-alkaline volcanic transition reflects the evolution of the Francevillian basin from a diverging to a converging setting, in response to the onset of converging movements in the Eburnean Belt of Central Africa.

  10. 3.30 Ga high-silica intraplate volcanic-plutonic system of the Gavião Block, São Francisco Craton, Brazil: Evidence of an intracontinental rift following the creation of insulating continental crust

    Zincone, Stefano A.; Oliveira, Elson P.; Laurent, Oscar; Zhang, Hong; Zhai, Mingguo


    High-silica rhyolites having U-Pb zircon ages of 3303 ± 11 Ma occur along the eastern border of the Gavião Block (Brazil) associated with the Contendas-Mirante and Mundo Novo supracrustal belts. Unlike many Archean greenstone sequences, they are not interlayered with mafic to intermediate units. Instead, they belong to an inter-related plutonic-volcanic system, together with granitic massifs having similar zircon crystallization ages of ca. 3293 ± 3 Ma and 3328 ± 3 Ma and plotting along the same geochemical trends as the rhyolites. The rhyolites show well-preserved primary volcanic features such as magma flow textures and euhedral phenocrysts. High emplacement temperatures are indicated by petrographic evidence (β-quartz phenocrysts), zircon saturation temperatures (915-820 °C) and geochemical data, especially high SiO2 (74-79 wt.%) together with elevated Fe2O3(T) ( 3 wt.%), MgO (0.5-1.5 wt.%) and low Al2O3 (extraction and eruption of highly silicic residual liquid formed by crystallization of granitic magma in a relatively shallow (< 10 km) reservoir, now represented by the granite massifs. The granite magma was formed by melting or differentiation of material similar to the diorite gneiss that occurs regionally. The 3.30 Ga volcanic-plutonic systems formed after a period of crustal growth and stabilization of a thick continental lithosphere, represented by massive 3.40-3.33 Ga TTG and medium to high-K calk-alkaline magmatism in the Gavião Block. The 3.30 Ga-old rhyolites and granites would therefore have formed in an intracontinental tectonic setting after the formation and stabilization of new continental crust, and accordingly would represent the first stages of rifting and continental break-up. Intraplate magmatism and intracrustal differentiation processes took place on Earth at 3.3 Ga and produced magmas that were distinct from Archean TTGs, questioning the reliability (or at least the uniqueness) of "intraplate models" to explain the origin of the

  11. Exploration of the Rotokawa geothermal field, Taupo volcanic zone, New Zealand

    Browne, P.R.L. (Univ. of Auckland (New Zealand))


    The Rotokawa geothermal field is located 7 km east of Wairakei, New Zealand, and has been investigated for its sulphur resources and power potential over the past 50 years. Exploration of the field has slow and mostly unsystematic. The depths of the drill holes are less than 50 m until 1964. Since 1965 the exploration has been carried out systematically. Three, one and four exploration wells were drilled in 1965-66, 1977, and 1984-86 respectively. Finding Jurassic greywackes and argillites at a depth of 2200 m below a thick (ca. 900 m)sequence of two pyroxene andesite lava flows had an important significance, because the Jurassic rocks are the basement rocks for the North Island. The Rotokawa geothermal field represents an important resource with an assessed potential of 49 MW (proven), 100 MW (probable) and 200 MW (possible), though these figures are considered to be probably optimistic. Further exploratory drilling is needed. The main development problems at this stage are: (1) encountering good subsurface permeability, (2) identifying and combating corrosive CO{sub 2}-rich fluids, (3) determining the most favorable reinjection conditions; this is a problem, ironically enhanced by the hot temperature and the consequently high silica contents of the thermal fluids, (4) establishing an acceptable development plan for the field which accommodates the requirements of both the sulphur mining interests, the power producers, and especially the Ngati Tahu maori owners of the land. 24 refs., 2 figs., 2 tabs.

  12. The role of inherited crustal structures and magmatism in the development of rift segments: Insights from the Kivu basin, western branch of the East African Rift

    Smets, Benoît; Delvaux, Damien; Ross, Kelly Ann; Poppe, Sam; Kervyn, Matthieu; d'Oreye, Nicolas; Kervyn, François


    The study of rift basin's morphology can provide good insights into geological features influencing the development of rift valleys and the distribution of volcanism. The Kivu rift segment represents the central section of the western branch of the East African Rift and displays morphological characteristics contrasting with other rift segments. Differences and contradictions between several structural maps of the Kivu rift make it difficult to interpret the local geodynamic setting. In the present work, we use topographic and bathymetric data to map active fault networks and study the geomorphology of the Kivu basin. This relief-based fault lineament mapping appears as a good complement for field mapping or mapping using seismic reflection profiles. Results suggest that rifting reactivated NE-SW oriented structures probably related to the Precambrian basement, creating transfer zones and influencing the location and distribution of volcanism. Both volcanic provinces, north and south of the Kivu basin, extend into Lake Kivu and are connected to each other with a series of eruptive vents along the western rift escarpment. The complex morphology of this rift basin, characterized by a double synthetic half-graben structure, might result from the combined action of normal faulting, magmatic underplating, volcanism and erosion processes.

  13. Comparative riftology: insights from crustal structure into the evolution of continental rifts and passive continental margins

    Kley, Jonas; Stein, Carol; Stein, Seth; Keller, Randy; Wysession, Michael; Frederiksen, Andrew


    Continental rifts evolve to seafloor spreading and are preserved in passive margins, or fail and remain as fossil features in continents. Rifts at different stages give insight into these different evolutionary paths. Of particular interest is how volcanic passive margins evolve. These features are characterized by sequences of volcanic rocks yielding magnetic anomalies landward of and sometimes larger than the oldest spreading anomalies. Seaward-dipping reflectors (SDR) occur in stretched continental crust landward of the oldest oceanic crust and are underplated by high-velocity lower crustal bodies. How and when these features form remains unclear. Insights are given by the Midcontinent Rift (MCR), formed by 1.1 Ga rifting of Amazonia from Laurentia, that failed once seafloor spreading was established elsewhere. MCR volcanics are much thicker than other continental flood basalts, due to deposition in a narrow rift rather than a broad region, giving a rift's geometry but a LIP's magma volume. The MCR provides a snapshot of the deposition of a thick highly magnetized volcanic section during rifting. Surface exposures and seismic-reflection data in and near Lake Superior show a rift basin filled by inward-dipping flood basalt layers. Had the rift evolved to seafloor spreading, the basin would have split into two sets of volcanics with opposite-facing SDRs, each with a strong magnetic anomaly. Because the rift formed as a series of alternating half-grabens, structural asymmetries between conjugate margins can naturally occur. Hence the MCR shows that many features form prior to breakup. Because the MCR was massively inverted by regional compression long after it failed and was uplifted, its structure is better known than failed rifts that incurred lesser degrees of inversion. It provides an end member for the evolution of actively extending rifts, characterized by upwelling mantle and negative gravity anomalies, in contrast to failed and inverted rifts without

  14. The East Greenland rifted volcanic margin

    C. Kent Brooks


    Full Text Available The Palaeogene North Atlantic Igneous Province is among the largest igneous provinces in the world and this review of the East Greenland sector includes large amounts of information amassed since previous reviews around 1990.The main area of igneous rocks extends from Kangerlussuaq (c. 67°N to Scoresby Sund (c. 70°N, where basalts extend over c. 65 000 km2, with a second area from Hold with Hope (c. 73°N to Shannon (c. 75°N. In addition, the Ocean Drilling Project penetrated basalt at five sites off South-East Greenland. Up to 7 km thickness of basaltic lavas have been stratigraphically and chemically described and their ages determined. A wide spectrum of intrusions are clustered around Kangerlussuaq, Kialeeq (c. 66°N and Mesters Vig (c. 72°N. Layered gabbros are numerous (e.g. the Skaergaard and Kap Edvard Holm intrusions, as are under- and oversaturated syenites, besides small amounts of nephelinite-derived products, such as the Gardiner complex (c. 69°N with carbonatites and silicate rocks rich in melilite, perovskite etc. Felsic extrusive rocks are sparse. A single, sanidine-bearing tuff found over an extensive area of the North Atlantic is thought to be sourced from the Gardiner complex.The province is famous for its coast-parallel dyke swarm, analogous to the sheeted dyke swarm of ophiolites, its associated coastal flexure, and many other dyke swarms, commonly related to central intrusive complexes as in Iceland. The dyke swarms provide time markers, tracers of magmatic evolution and evidence of extensional events. A set of dykes with harzburgite nodules gives unique insight into the Archaean subcontinental lithosphere.Radiometric dating indicates extrusion of huge volumes of basalt over a short time interval, but the overall life of the province was prolonged, beginning with basaltic magmas at c. 60 Ma and continuing to the quartz porphyry stock at Malmbjerg (c. 72°N at c. 26 Ma. Indeed, activity was renewed in the Miocene with the emplacement of small volumes of basalts of the Vindtoppen Formation to the south of Scoresby Sund.Although the basalts were extruded close to sea level, this part of East Greenland is a plateau raised to c. 2 km, but the timing of uplift is controversial. Superimposed on the plateau is a major dome at Kangerlussuaq.East Greenland presents a rich interplay between magmatic and tectonic events reflecting the birth of the North Atlantic Ocean. It was active over a much longer period (36 Ma than other parts of the province (5 Ma in the Hebrides, Northern Ireland and the Faroe Islands and contains a wider range of products, including carbonatites, and felsic rocks tend to be granitic rather than syenitic. As expected, there are many similarities with Iceland, the present-day expression of activity in the province. Differences are readily explained by higher production rates and the thicker lithospheric lid during the early stages of development in East Greenland. The igneous and related activity clearly results from plate-tectonic factors, but the relationship is not understood in detail. In particular, the nature of the underlying mantle processes, primarily the presence or absence of a plume, is still not resolved.

  15. Morphotectonics of the Tunka rift and its bordering mountains in the Baikal rift system, Russia

    Shchetnikov, Alexander


    The Tunka section of the Baikal rift system presents a uniform alternation of the following neostructural forms: tilted horsts and asymmetrical block uplifts on the northern flank; the central system of the rift valleys; and the arched uplift of the southern flank. This is a standard set of morphostructural elements for the Baikal rift system. The main morphological feature of the Tunka rift is the strong inclination of its floor, ranging from 900 m to 200 km in general elevation above Lake Baikal. Such traits of recent geodynamics as volcanism, thermal activity, and seismicity are also different from other parts of the rift zone. All of these features of the Tunka rift are related to the deep structure of the rift zone. The peculiarities of the neotectonic structure of the Tunka rift, which are clearly expressed morphologically as is typical of the Baikal rift system, as well as its unique features are in accordance with deep geodynamic processes of the region. On the other hand, the development of the rift basin structures of the southwestern area near Baikal is complicated by inversion deformations. Local uplifts followed by deformations of the basin sedimentary cover and inverted morphostructures expressed in relief are fixed against the background of the general subsidence of blocks of the pre-Cenozoic basement grabens. The Tunka rift has repeatedly experienced inversion deformations throughout its history. The last wave of such deformations involved the southwestern region near Baikal in the second half of the late Pleistocene. During the Quaternary, the positive component prevailed in the whole range of vertical movements of the inter-rift and interbasin blocks; since the late Neogene, these structures have experienced a slow but steady uplift, accompanied by their extension at the expense of the bordering basins. The remote influence of the India-Asia collision on the formation of the southwestern section of the Baikal rift system is very significant and

  16. Cyclists' attitudes toward policies encouraging bicycle travel: findings from the Taupo Bicycle Study in New Zealand.

    Tin Tin, Sandar; Woodward, Alistair; Thornley, Simon; Langley, John; Rodgers, Anthony; Ameratunga, Shanthi


    Utility cycling provides substantial health, environmental and economic benefits. Despite a favourable trend in leisure-time cycling, cycling is infrequently used for everyday travel needs in New Zealand. This study investigated cyclists' attitudes toward environmental and policy measures that would encourage them to cycle more, particularly for a trip to work. A cross-sectional analysis was undertaken using baseline data obtained from the Taupo Bicycle Study, a web-based longitudinal study. The study population comprised 2469 cyclists, aged 16 years or over, who had enrolled in the 2006 Wattyl Lake Taupo Cycle Challenge. The majority (88%) reported the provision of bicycle lanes as an important factor that would encourage them to cycle more often, followed by bicycle paths (76%), better bicycle security (64%), reduced motor vehicle speed (55%) and bike friendly public transport (38%). Of those who reported travelling to work at least once a week (N = 2223), varying proportions reported shower facilities at work (61%), fewer difficult intersections (43%), rising fuel costs (41%), fewer car parks (27%), bike designed to commute (26%) and rising cost of car parking (25%) as important factors that would encourage them to cycle to work more often. There were important differences in these perceived influences defined by the participants' socio-demographic characteristics and current cycling habits.

  17. Permo-Triassic anatexis, continental rifting and the disassembly of western Pangaea

    Cochrane, Ryan; Spikings, Richard; Gerdes, Axel; Ulianov, Alexey; Mora, Andres; Villagómez, Diego; Putlitz, Benita; Chiaradia, Massimo


    Crustal anatectites are frequently observed along ocean-continent active margins, although their origins are disputed with interpretations varying between rift-related and collisional. We report geochemical, isotopic and geochronological data that define an ~ 1500 km long belt of S-type meta-granites along the Andes of Colombia and Ecuador, which formed during 275-223 Ma. These are accompanied by amphibolitized tholeiitic basaltic dykes that yield concordant zircon U-Pb dates ranging between 240 and 223 Ma. A model is presented which places these rocks within a compressive Permian arc setting that existed during the amalgamation of westernmost Pangaea. Anatexis and mafic intrusion during 240-223 Ma are interpreted to have occurred during continental rifting, which culminated in the formation of oceanic crust and initiated the break-up of western Pangaea. Compression during 275-240 Ma generated small volumes of crustal melting. Rifting during 240-225 Ma was characterized by basaltic underplating, the intrusion of tholeiitic basalts and a peak in crustal melting. Tholeiitic intrusions during 225-216 Ma isotopically resemble depleted mantle and yield no evidence for contamination by continental crust, and we assign this period to the onset of continental drift. Dissected ophiolitic sequences in northern Colombia yield zircon U-Pb dates of 216 Ma. The Permo-Triassic margin of Ecuador and Colombia exhibits close temporal, faunal and geochemical similarities with various crustal blocks that form the basement to parts of Mexico, and thus these may represent the relict conjugate margin to NW Gondwana. The magmatic record of the early disassembly of Pangaea spans ~ 20 Ma (240-216 Ma), and the duration of rifting and rift-drift transition is similar to that documented in Cretaceous-Tertiary rift settings such as the West Iberia-Newfoundland conjugate margins, and the Taupo-Lau-Havre System, where rifting and continental disassembly also occurred over periods lasting ~ 20 Ma.

  18. The NE Rift of Tenerife: towards a model on the origin and evolution of ocean island rifts; La dorsal NE de Tenerife: hacia un modelo del origen y evolucion de los rifts de islas oceanicas

    Carracedo, J. C.; Guillou, H.; Rodriguez Badiola, E.; Perez-Torrado, F. J.; Rodriguez Gonzalez, A.; Peris, R.; Troll, V.; Wiesmaier, S.; Delcamp, A.; Fernandez-Turiel, J. L.


    The NE Rift of Tenerife is an excellent example of a persistent, recurrent rift, providing important evidence of the origin and dynamics of these major volcanic features. The rift developed in three successive, intense and relatively short eruptive stages (a few hundred ka), separated by longer periods of quiescence or reduced activity: A Miocene stage (7266 {+-}156 ka), apparently extending the central Miocene shield of Tenerife towards the Anaga massif; an Upper Pliocene stage (2710{+-} 58 ka) and the latest stage, with the main eruptive phase in the Pleistocene. Detailed geological (GIS) mapping, geomagnetic reversal mapping and stratigraphic correlation, and radioisotopic (K/Ar) dating of volcanic formations allowed the reconstruction of the latest period of rift activity. In the early phases of this stage the majority of the eruptions grouped tightly along the axis of the rift and show reverse polarity (corresponding to the Matuyama chron). Dykes are of normal and reverse polarities. In the final phase of activity, eruptions are more disperse and lavas and dykes are consistently of normal polarity (Brunhes chron). Volcanic units of normal polarity crossed by dykes of normal and reverse polarities yield ages apparently compatible with normal subchrons (M-B Precursor and Jaramillo) in the Upper Matuyama chron. Three lateral collapses successively mass-wasted the rift: The Micheque collapse, completely concealed by subsequent nested volcanism, and the Guimar and La Orotava collapses, that are only partially filled. Time occurrence of collapses in the NE rift apparently coincides with glacial stages, suggesting that giant landslides may be finally triggered by sea level chan-ges during glaciations. Pre-collapse and nested volcanism is predominantly basaltic, except in the Micheque collapse, where magmas evolved towards intermediate and felsic (trachytic) compositions. Rifts in the Canary Islands are long-lasting, recurrent features, probably related to primordial

  19. Geothermal resources of rifts: A comparison of the rio grande rift and the salton trough

    Swanberg, Chandler A.


    The Rio Grande Rift and the Salton Trough are the best developed rift systems in the United States and both share many features common to rifts in general, including geothermal resources. These two rifts have different tectonic and magmatic histories, however, and these differences are reflected in the nature of their geothermal resources. The Salton Trough is a well developed and successful rift. It is the landward extension of the Gulf of California spreading center, which has separated Baja, California, from the remainder of Mexico. Quaternary silicic magmatization has occurred and several of the geothermal resources are associated with recent rhyolitic intrusions. Such resources tend to be high temperature (> 200°C). Greenschist facies metamorphism has been observed in several of the geothermal wells. Localized upper crustal melting is a distinct possibility and there is increasing speculation that very high temperature (> 300°C) geothermal fluids may underlie a large portion of the central trough at depths in excess of 4 km. Low temperature geothermal resources associated with shallow hydrothermal convection are less common and tend to be located on the flanks of the trough or in the Coachella Valley to the north of the zone of active rifting. In contrast, the Rio Grande Rift is less well developed. Recent volcanism consists primarily of mantle-derived basalts, which have not had sufficient residence time within the crust to generate significant crustal melting. The geothermal resources within the Rio Grande Rift do not correlate well with these young basalts. Rather, the quantity of geothermal resources are low temperature (geothermal exploration targets.

  20. Rapid high-silica magma generation in basalt-dominated rift settings

    Berg, Sylvia E.; Troll, Valentin R.; Burchardt, Steffi; Deegan, Frances M.; Riishuus, Morten S.; Whitehouse, Martin J.; Harris, Chris; Freda, Carmela; Ellis, Ben S.; Krumbholz, Michael; Gústafsson, Ludvik E.


    The processes that drive large-scale silicic magmatism in basalt-dominated provinces have been widely debated for decades, with Iceland being at the centre of this discussion [1-5]. Iceland hosts large accumulations of silicic rocks in a largely basaltic oceanic setting that is considered by some workers to resemble the situation documented for the Hadean [6-7]. We have investigated the time scales and processes of silicic volcanism in the largest complete pulse of Neogene rift-related silicic magmatism preserved in Iceland (>450 km3), which is a potential analogue of initial continent nucleation in early Earth. Borgarfjörður Eystri in NE-Iceland hosts silicic rocks in excess of 20 vol.%, which exceeds the ≤12 vol% usual for Iceland [3,8]. New SIMS zircon ages document that the dominantly explosive silicic pulse was generated within a ≤2 Myr window (13.5 ± 0.2 to 12.2 ± 03 Ma), and sub-mantle zircon δ18O values (1.2 to 4.5 ± 0.2‰, n=337) indicate ≤33% assimilation of low-δ18O hydrothermally-altered crust (δ18O=0‰), with intense crustal melting at 12.5 Ma, followed by rapid termination of silicic magma production once crustal fertility declined [9]. This silicic outburst was likely caused by extensive rift flank volcanism due to a rift relocation and a flare of the Iceland plume [4,10] that triggered large-scale crustal melting and generated mixed-origin silicic melts. High-silica melt production from a basaltic parent was replicated in a set of new partial melting experiments of regional hydrated basalts, conducted at 800-900°C and 150 MPa, that produced silicic melt pockets up to 77 wt.% SiO2. Moreover, Ti-in-zircon thermometry from Borgarfjörður Eystri give a zircon crystallisation temperature ~713°C (Ti range from 2.4 to 22.1 ppm, average=7.7 ppm, n=142), which is lower than recorded elsewhere in Iceland [11], but closely overlaps with the zircon crystallisation temperatures documented for Hadean zircon populations [11-13], hinting at

  1. Pore Fluid Evolution Influenced by Volcanic Activities and Related Diagenetic Processes in a Rift Basin: Evidence from the Paleogene Medium-Deep Reservoirs of Huanghekou Sag, Bohai Bay Basin, China

    Zhongheng Sun


    Full Text Available Volcanic activities exert a significant influence on pore fluid property and related diagenetic processes that substantially controlled reservoirs quality. Analysis of Paleogene medium-deep sandstones on the Huanghekou Sag provides insight into relating the diagenetic processes to pore fluid property evolution influenced by volcanic activities. Three distinct types of pore fluids were identified on the basis of an integrated and systematic analysis including core and thin section observation, XRD, SEM, CL, and trace element. Alkaline aqueous medium environment occurred in E2s1+2 where volcanic activities have insignificant influence on pore fluids, evidenced by typical alkaline diagenetic events such as K-feldspar albitization, quartz dissolution, feldspar dissolution, and carbonate cementation. During the deposition of E3d3, influx of terrestrial freshwater and alteration of ferromagnesian-rich pore water result in the formation of mixing aqueous medium environment through volcanic eruption dormancy causing zeolite dissolution, clay mineral transformation, and K-feldspar albitization. Ferromagnesian-rich aqueous medium environment developed resulting from the intensive hydrolysis of the unstable ferromagnesian minerals formed due to intense volcanic activities during E3d1+2 and corresponding predominant diagenetic processes were characterized by the precipitation and dissolution of low-silica zeolites. Therefore, the differential properties of pore fluids caused various diagenetic processes controlling reservoir quality.

  2. Haemoragisk Rift Valley Fever

    Fabiansen, Christian; Thybo, Søren


    A case of fatal hemorrhagic Rift Valley fever during an epidemic in Kenya's North Eastern Province in January 2007 is described.......A case of fatal hemorrhagic Rift Valley fever during an epidemic in Kenya's North Eastern Province in January 2007 is described....

  3. Rift Valley Fever Virus

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a mosquito-transmitted virus or arbovirus that is endemic in sub-Saharan Africa. In the last decade, Rift Valley fever (RVF) outbreaks have resulted in loss of human and animal life, as well as had significant economic impact. The disease in livestock is primarily a...

  4. A preliminary description of the Gan-Hang failed rift, southeastern china

    Goodell, P. C.; Gilder, S.; Fang, X.


    The Gan-Hang failed rift, as defined by present-day topography, extends at least 450 km in length and 50 km in width. It is a northeast-southwest trending series of features spanning from Hangzhou Bay in Zhejiang province into Jiangxi province through Fuzhou City. Southwest of Fuzhou, the rift splits into two portions: one continuing along the southwestern trend, and the other diverging westward. The total extent of the rift cannot be defined at this time. The rift is superimposed upon a major suture zone of Caledonian or early Mesozoic age. The suture represents the fusing of the South China (Huanan) and Yangtze cratons. Perhaps in Late Triassic, but for sure by Late-Middle Jurassic time, the rifting was initiated and followed this older suture, in part. This time corresponds roughly to the middle stage of the Yanshanian orogeny and to the subduction of the postulated Pacific- Kula ridge southeast of the continental margin. The total thickness of the sediments and volcanics filling the rift valley reaches more than 10,000 m. Peak intensity of extension was between Late-Middle Jurassic and Middle to Late Cretaceous. Sedimentation within the rift was not continuous and is marked with periodic unconformities. Sediments within the rift include red beds, sandstones, siltstones, mudstones, conglomerates, breccias, tuffs, and ignimbrites. Vertebrate fossils and dinosaur eggs are also found. Contemporaneous volcanics within and flanking the rift include basalts, rhyolites, granites, gabbros, dacites, and andesites. Silicic volcanics are mostly attributed to caldera systems. Early basalts are tholeiitic and later change to alkaline-olivine basalt. Bimodal volcanism is recognized. Peak intensity of volcanism ranges between 135 and 75 Ma. In Early Cenozoic time, the area was a topographic low. Paleocene- Eocene sediments and evaporites are the last rocks to be deposited in the rift. Today the rift is delineated by major, high-angle faults (the Pingxiang-Guangfeng deep fault

  5. Augmented Reality Oculus Rift

    Höll, Markus; Heran, Nikolaus; Lepetit, Vincent


    This paper covers the whole process of developing an Augmented Reality Stereoscopig Render Engine for the Oculus Rift. To capture the real world in form of a camera stream, two cameras with fish-eye lenses had to be installed on the Oculus Rift DK1 hardware. The idea was inspired by Steptoe \\cite{steptoe2014presence}. After the introduction, a theoretical part covers all the most neccessary elements to achieve an AR System for the Oculus Rift, following the implementation part where the code ...

  6. The Records of the Tectonic Evolution From the Volcanics in Qiangtang Basin, Tibet

    He Zhonghua; Yang Deming; Li Cai; Pu Zhongyu


    The volcanism in Qiangtang Basin is very frequent due to the divergence and subduction of the various plates. The study indicates that these volcanics are formed in different tectonic settings: 1 )Hercynian volcanics are mainly basalts and are formed in the intraplate and intercontinental rift. 2 ) Indosinian volcanics markedly vary in the distribution and composition and reflect transitional MORB and island are environments respectively. 3) Yanshanian volcanics consist predominantly of basalts, andesites, dacites and rhyolites and are characterized by calc- alkaline volcanic suite, indicating island arc setting. 4)Himalayan volcanics are complicated and associated with intraplate orogency. The volcanism provides important tectonic information for recognizing the evolution of Qiangtang Basin.

  7. Dike intrusions during rifting episodes obey scaling relationships similar to earthquakes

    L., Passarelli; E., Rivalta; A., Shuler


    As continental rifts evolve towards mid-ocean ridges, strain is accommodated by repeated episodes of faulting and magmatism. Discrete rifting episodes have been observed along two subaerial divergent plate boundaries, the Krafla segment of the Northern Volcanic Rift Zone in Iceland and the Manda-Hararo segment of the Red Sea Rift in Ethiopia. In both cases, the initial and largest dike intrusion was followed by a series of smaller intrusions. By performing a statistical analysis of these rifting episodes, we demonstrate that dike intrusions obey scaling relationships similar to earthquakes. We find that the dimensions of dike intrusions obey a power law analogous to the Gutenberg-Richter relation, and the long-term release of geodetic moment is governed by a relationship consistent with the Omori law. Due to the effects of magma supply, the timing of secondary dike intrusions differs from that of the aftershocks. This work provides evidence of self-similarity in the rifting process. PMID:24469260

  8. Rifting, rotation, detachment faulting, and sedimentation: Miocene evolution of the southern California margin

    Bachman, S.B.; Crouch, J.K. (Crouch, Bachman, and Associates, Inc., Santa Barbara, CA (USA))


    The evolution of the Los Angeles and adjacent offshore Santa Monica and San Pedro basins of southern California began during the earliest Miocene. The basins formed as the result of rifting and subsequent large scale rotation of segments within a preexisting Mesozoic-Paleogene forearc basin. Clockwise rotation (less than 90{degree}) of the outer two-thirds of this fore-arc basin during the early and middle Miocene moved these once north-trending forearc strata into an east-west trend (the modern Transverse Ranges). The eastern margin of the initial rift remains in its original location and is best documented from outcrop and subsurface data in the San Joaquin Hills. What was once the western margin of the rift has been rotated to a position north of the rift, along the southern Santa Monica Mountains. The early Miocene Vaqueros sandstones. which that are entirely shallow-marine and thousands of feet thick provide evidence for initial subsidence of the rift. Widening of the rift and separation of the Santa Monica Mountains and the San Joaquin Hills in the early and middle Miocene was accompanied by detachment faulting and volcanism along the rift margins. These detachment faults can be documented in the subsurface of the San Joaquin Hills and in outcrop in the Santa Monica Mountains. A unique aspect of this inner borderland rift is the rapid uplift, exposure, erosion, and then subsidence of high pressure/temperature metamorphic basement blocks (Catalina schist) within the rift itself. These basement rocks were buried 20 to 30 km beneath the ancestral fore arc prior to rifting. They were uplifted, perhaps due to thermal effects, during pervasive early and middle Miocene volcanism within the rift. Evidence of these dramatic events is provided by the distinctive San Onofre breccia deposit exposed along the margins of the rift.

  9. Rifting, landsliding and magmatic variability in the Canary Islands

    Carracedo, J. C.; Troll, V. R.; Guillou, H.; Badiola, E. R.; Pérez-Torrado, F. J.; Wiesmaier, S.; Delcamp, A.; Gonzalez, A. R.


    Rifts, probably the most influential structures in the geology of the Canary Islands, may also be responsible for the development of central felsic volcanoes, which are consistently nested in the collapse basins of the massive lateral collapses found in the Canaries. Three main types of post-collapse volcanism have been observed, particularly in the western Canaries: 1. Collapses followed by relatively scant, non-differentiated volcanism inside the collapse depression (El Golfo, El Hierro; La Orotava and Güímar, Tenerife), 2. those with important, although short-lasting (tens of thousands of years), post-collapse activity including felsic (phonolitic, trachytic) central volcanism (Bejenado, La Palma; Vallehermoso, La Gomera), and 3. those with very important, long-lasting (>100 kyr) post-collapse activity, evolving from primitive to felsic magmatism, eventually resulting in very high stratovolcanoes (Teide, Tenerife). Three consecutive sector collapses (Micheque, Güímar and La Orotava) mass-wasted the flanks of in the NE rift of Tenerife after intense and concentrated eruptive activity, particularly from about 1.10 Ma to 0.96 Ma, with periods of growth up to 15-25 m/kyr. Volcanic activity completely filled the Micheque collapse, evolving from basaltic to differentiated trachytic eruptions. Conversely, nested volcanism was less abundant in the Güímar and La Orotava collapses. This requires two fundamentally different scenarios which may be a function of active versus passive flank collapse trigger mechanisms: 1. The collapse occurs as a result of one of these short but intense intrusive-eruptive periods and probably triggered by concurring extensional stresses at the rifts (rift push), or 2. the giant landslide is derived only from gravitational instability. In the first scenario, the collapse of the flank of the rift may disrupt an established fissural feeding system that rapidly fills the collapse basin. Due to its disruption and the progressive new

  10. Metallogeny of the midcontinent rift system of North America

    Nicholson, S.W.; Cannon, W.F.; Schulz, K.J.


    The 1.1 Ga Midcontinent rift system of North America is one of the world's major continental rifts and hosts a variety of mineral deposits. The rocks and mineral deposits of this 2000 km long rift are exposed only in the Lake Superior region. In the Lake Superior region, the rift cuts across Precambrian basement terranes ranging in age from ??? 1850 Ma to more than 3500 Ma. Where exposed, the rift consists of widespread tholeiitic basalt flows with local interlayered rhyolite and clastic sedimentary rocks. Beneath the center of Lake Superior the volcanic and sedimentary rocks are more than 30 km deep as shown by recent seismic reflection profiles. This region hosts two major classes of mineral deposits, magmatic and hydrothermal. All important mineral production in this region has come from hydrothermal deposits. Rift-related hydrothermal deposits include four main types: (1) native copper deposits in basalts and interflow sediments; (2) sediment-hosted copper sulfide and native copper; (3) copper sulfide veins and lodes hosted by rift-related volcanic and sedimentary rocks; and (4) polymetallic (five-element) veins in the surrounding Archean country rocks. The scarcity of sulfur within the rift rocks resulted in the formation of very large deposits of native metals. Where hydrothermal sulfides occur (i.e., shale-hosted copper sulfides), the source of sulfur was local sedimentary rocks. Magmatic deposits have locally supported exploration and minor production, but most are subeconomic presently. These deposits occur in intrusions exposed near the margins of the rift and include CuNiPGE and TiFe (V) in the Duluth Complex, U-REE-Nb in small carbonatites, and breccia pipes resulting from local hydrothermal activity around small felsic intrusions. Mineralization associated with some magmatic bodies resulted from the concentration of incompatible elements during fractional crystallization. Most of the sulfide deposits in intrusions, however, contain sulfur derived from

  11. Beta Regio rift system on Venus: Geologic interpretation of Magellan images

    Nikishin, A. M.; Bobina, N. N.; Borozdin, V. K.; Burba, G. A.


    Magellan SAR images and altimetric data were used to produce a new geologic map of the Northern part of Beta Regio within the frames of C1-30N279 mapsheet. It was part of our contributions into C1-formate geologic mapping efforts. The original map is at 1:8,000,000 scale. The rift structures are typical for Beta Regio on Venus. There are many large uplifted tessera areas on Beta upland. They occupy areas of higher topography. These tessera are partly burried by younger volcanic cover of plain material. These observations show that Beta upland was formed mainly due to lithospheric tectonical uplifting, and only partly was constructed by volcanic activity. A number of rift valleis traverse Beta upland and spread to the surrounding lowlands. The largest rift crosses Beta N to S. Typical width of rifts is 40 to 160 km. Rift valleis in this region are structurally represented by crustal grabens and half-grabens. There are symmetrical and asymmetrical rifts. A lot of them have shoulder uplifts with the relative high up to 0.5-1 km and width 40 to 60 km. Preliminary analysis of the largest rift valley structural cross-sections leads to the conclusion that it originated due to a 5-10 percent crustal extension. The prominent shield volcano - Theia Mons - is located at the center of Beta rift system. It could be considered as the surface manifestation of the upper mantle hot spot. Most of the rift belts are located radially to Theia Mons. The set of these data leads to conclusion that Beta rift system has an 'active-passive' origin. It was formed due to the regional tectonic lithospheric extension. Rifting was accelerated by the upper mantle hot spot located under the center of passive extension (under Beta Regio).

  12. Middle Tertiary continental rift and evolution of the Red Sea in southwestern Saudi Arabia

    Schmidt, Dwight Lyman; Hadley, Donald G.; Brown, Glen F.


    Middle Tertiary rift volcanism in a continental-rift valley in the Arabian-Nubian Shield was the first surface expression of active mantle convection beneath an axis that was to become the Red Sea. Investigation of the coastal plain of southwestern Saudi Arabia suggests that the rift valley was filled with basaltic and felsic to rhyolitic volcanic rocks (Ad Darb and Damad formations), cherty tuffaceous siltstones (Baid formation), and subordinate Nubian-type quartz sandstone (Ayyanah sandstone) between about 30 and 20 Ma ago. These rocks are named herein the Jizan group. At the same time, alkali-olivine basalt was erupted on the stable Precambrian craton at locations 100 to 200 km east of the rift valley axis.

  13. GIS-Based emergency and evacuation planning for volcanic hazards in New Zealand

    Cole, J. W.; Sabel, C. E.; Blumenthal, E.


    in New Zealand is high, with 10 volcanoes or volcanic centres (Auckland, Bay of Islands, Haroharo, Mayor Island, Ruapehu, Taranaki, Tarawera, Taupo, Tongariro (including Ngauruhoe) and White Island) recognised as active or potentially active. In addition there are many active and potentially active...... (reduction, readiness, response and recovery) can benefit from CIS, including applications related to transportation systems, a critical element in managing effective lifelines in an emergency. This is particularly true immediately before and during a volcanic eruption. The potential for volcanic activity...... volcanoes along the Kermadec Island chain. There is a great deal of background information on all of these volcanoes, and GIS is currently being used for some aspects of monitoring (e.g. ERS and Envisat radar interferometry for observing deformation prior to eruptions). If an eruption is considered imminent...

  14. Phanerozoic Rifting Phases And Mineral Deposits

    Hassaan, Mahmoud


    In North Africa occur Mediterranean and Red Sea metallogenic provinces. In each province distribute 47 iron- manganese- barite and lead-zinc deposits with tectonic-structural control. The author presents in this paper aspects of position of these deposits in the two provinces with Phanerozoic rifting . The Mediterranean Province belongs to two epochs, Hercynian and Alpine. The Hercynian Epoch manganese deposits in only Moroccoa- Algeria belong to Paleozoic tectonic zones and Proterozoic volcanics. The Alpine Epoch iron-manganese deposits are of post-orogenic exhalative-sedimentary origin. Manganese deposits in southern Morocco occur in Kabil-Rief quartz-chalcedony veins controlled by faults in andesitic sheets and in bedded pelitic tuffs, strata-form lenses and ore veins, in Precambrian schist and in Triassic and Cretaceous dolomites. Disseminated manganese with quartz and barite and effusive hydrothermal veins are hosted in Paleocene volcanics. Manganese deposits in Algeria are limited and unrecorded in Tunisia. Strata-form iron deposits in Atlas Heights are widespread in sub-rift zone among Jurassic sediments inter-bedding volcanic rocks. In Algeria, Group Beni-Saf iron deposits are localized along the Mediterranean coast in terrigenous and carbonate rocks of Jurassic, Cretaceous and Eocene age within faults and bedding planes. In Morocco strata-form hydrothermal lead-zinc deposits occur in contact zone of Tertiary andesite inter-bedding Cambrian shale, Lias dolomites and Eocene andesite. In both Algeria and Tunisia metasomatic Pb-Zn veins occur in Campanian - Maastrichtian carbonates, Triassic breccia, Jurassic limestone, Paleocene sandstones and limestone and Neogene conglomerates and sandstones. The Red Sea metallogenic province belongs to the Late Tertiary-Miocene times. In Wadi Araba hydrothermal iron-manganese deposits occur in Cretaceous sediments within 320°and 310 NW faults related to Tertiary basalt. Um-Bogma iron-manganese deposits are closely

  15. Groundwater fluoride enrichment in an active rift setting: Central Kenya Rift case study

    Olaka, Lydia A., E-mail: [Department of Geology, University of Nairobi, P.O Box 30197, Nairobi (Kenya); Wilke, Franziska D.H. [Geoforschungs Zentrum, Telegrafenberg, 14473 Potsdam (Germany); Olago, Daniel O.; Odada, Eric O. [Department of Geology, University of Nairobi, P.O Box 30197, Nairobi (Kenya); Mulch, Andreas [Senckenberg Biodiversity and Climate Research Centre, Senckenberganlage 25, 60325 Frankfurt (Germany); Institut für Geowissenschaften, Goethe Universität Frankfurt, Altenhöferallee 1, 60438 Frankfurt (Germany); Musolff, Andreas [UFZ-Helmholtz-Centre for Environmental Research, Department of Hydrogeology, Permoserstr. 15, 04318 Leipzig (Germany)


    Groundwater is used extensively in the Central Kenya Rift for domestic and agricultural demands. In these active rift settings groundwater can exhibit high fluoride levels. In order to address water security and reduce human exposure to high fluoride in drinking water, knowledge of the source and geochemical processes of enrichment are required. A study was therefore carried out within the Naivasha catchment (Kenya) to understand the genesis, enrichment and seasonal variations of fluoride in the groundwater. Rocks, rain, surface and groundwater sources were sampled for hydrogeochemical and isotopic investigations, the data was statistically and geospatially analyzed. Water sources have variable fluoride concentrations between 0.02–75 mg/L. 73% exceed the health limit (1.5 mg/L) in both dry and wet seasons. F{sup −} concentrations in rivers are lower (0.2–9.2 mg/L) than groundwater (0.09 to 43.6 mg/L) while saline lake waters have the highest concentrations (0.27–75 mg/L). The higher values are confined to elevations below 2000 masl. Oxygen (δ{sup 18}O) and hydrogen (δD) isotopic values range from − 6.2 to + 5.8‰ and − 31.3 to + 33.3‰, respectively, they are also highly variable in the rift floor where they attain maximum values. Fluoride base levels in the precursor vitreous volcanic rocks are higher (between 3750–6000 ppm) in minerals such as cordierite and muscovite while secondary minerals like illite and kaolinite have lower remnant fluoride (< 1000 ppm). Thus, geochemical F{sup −} enrichment in regional groundwater is mainly due to a) rock alteration, i.e. through long residence times and natural discharge and/or enhanced leakages of deep seated geothermal water reservoirs, b) secondary concentration fortification of natural reservoirs through evaporation, through reduced recharge and/or enhanced abstraction and c) through additional enrichment of fluoride after volcanic emissions. The findings are useful to help improve water management

  16. The Transition from Initial Rifting to Ultra-Slow Seafloor Spreading within Endeavor Deep

    Pockalny, R. A.; Larson, R. L.; Popham, C. T.; Natland, J. H.


    Endeavor Deep is a NW-SE trending, 3 km-deep rift basin located along the divergent portion of the Nazca/Juan Fernandez plate boundary. The rift basin is the result of the propagation of the East Ridge toward the northwest with relative motion across the ridge defined by a rapidly rotating (5.5 degrees/myr) Euler Pole located ~100 km to the northwest. The close proximity of Endeavor Deep to this Euler Pole results in a rapidly varying velocity field along the length of the deep and represents a unique location to study the effect of varying divergence rates on initial crustal extension. Recently collected EM300 bathymetry, DSL120 sidescan, surface-towed magnetics and JASON II observations have documented 4 distinct stages of rifting along the 70 km length of Endeavor Deep. These stages include (from NW to SE): amagmatic rifting, distributed initial volcanism, centralized waxing volcanism, and crustal formation by ultra-slow seafloor spreading. Amagmatic extension, evolving to rifting, occurs at spreading rates less than 13 km/myr and is characterized by rapidly deepening rift depths from NW to SE with an overall increase in depth of about 2.5 km. Extension is accommodated over a width of about 10-15 km and some flexural uplift of the defining scarps is observed. Distributed initial volcanism occurs at spreading rates from 13-14 km/myr and is characterized by coalesced volcanic constructs (100-200 m-high, 1-2 km-wide) across the width of the rift floor. The depth of the rift basin becomes fairly constant, but the cross-sectional area of the deep continues to increase. Centralized waxing volcanism occurs at spreading rates from 14-17 km/myr and is characterized by pillow ridges and tectonic lineations along the central portion of the rift floor which are oriented parallel to the long axis of the rift basin (orthogonal to the direction of extension). The floor of the rift basin begins to shoal and the cross-sectional area of the deep decreases initially and then

  17. Tectonic focusing of voluminous basaltic eruptions in magma-deficient backarc rifts

    Anderson, Melissa O.; Hannington, Mark D.; Haase, Karsten; Schwarz-Schampera, Ulrich; Augustin, Nico; McConachy, Timothy F.; Allen, Katie


    The Coriolis Troughs of the New Hebrides subduction zone are among the youngest backarc rifts in the world. They reach depths of >3 km, despite their small size (Pacific, occur on the youngest lava flows. Comparison with similar axial volcanoes on the mid-ocean ridges suggests that the 46 ×106 m3 of sheet flows in the caldera could have been erupted in ridge. This study shows that the upper plate stresses can result in dramatic variability in magma supply and hydrothermal activity at the earliest stages of arc rifting and could explain the wide range of melt compositions, volcanic styles and mineral deposit types found in nascent backarc rifts.

  18. Structural interpretation of El Hierro (Canary Islands) rifts system from gravity inversion modelling

    Sainz-Maza, S.; Montesinos, F. G.; Martí, J.; Arnoso, J.; Calvo, M.; Borreguero, A.


    Recent volcanism in El Hierro Island is mostly concentrated along three elongated and narrow zones which converge at the center of the island. These zones with extensive volcanism have been identified as rift zones. The presence of similar structures is common in many volcanic oceanic islands, so understanding their origin, dynamics and structure is important to conduct hazard assessment in such environments. There is still not consensus on the origin of the El Hierro rift zones, having been associated with mantle uplift or interpreted as resulting from gravitational spreading and flank instability. To further understand the internal structure and origin of the El Hierro rift systems, starting from the previous gravity studies, we developed a new 3D gravity inversion model for its shallower layers, gathering a detailed picture of this part of the island, which has permitted a new interpretation about these rifts. Previous models already identified a main central magma accumulation zone and several shallower high density bodies. The new model allows a better resolution of the pathways that connect both levels and the surface. Our results do not point to any correspondence between the upper parts of these pathways and the rift identified at the surface. Non-clear evidence of progression toward deeper parts into the volcanic system is shown, so we interpret them as very shallow structures, probably originated by local extensional stresses derived from gravitational loading and flank instability, which are used to facilitate the lateral transport of magma when it arrives close to the surface.

  19. Continental Rifts and Resources

    Stein, Holly J.


    Nearly all resource-forming systems involve upward mobility of fluids and melts. In fact, one of the most effective means of chemically transforming the earth's crust can be readily observed in the rift environment. Imposition of rifting is based on deeper stresses that play out in the crust. At its most fundamental level, rifting transfers heat and fluids to the crust. Heat delivered by fluids aids both in transport of metal and maturation of hydrocarbons. The oxidizing capacity of fluids on their arrival in the deep crust, whether derived from old slabs, depleted upper mantle and/or deeper, more primitive mantle, is a fundamental part of the resource-forming equation. Oxidizing fluids transport some metals and breakdown kerogen, the precursor for oil. Reducing fluids transport a different array of metals. The tendency is to study the resource, not the precursor or the non-economic footprint. In doing so, we lose the opportunity to discover the involvement and significance of initiating processes; for example, externally derived fluids may produce widespread alteration in host rocks, a process that commonly precedes resource deposition. It is these processes that are ultimately the transferable knowledge for successful mineral and hydrocarbon exploration. Further limiting our understanding of process is the tendency to study large, highly complex, and economically successful ore-forming or petroleum systems. In order to understand their construction, however, it is necessary to put equal time toward understanding non-economic systems. It is the non-economic systems that often clearly preserve key processes. The large resource-forming systems are almost always characterized by multiple episodes of hydrothermal overprints, making it difficult if not impossible to clearly discern individual events. Understanding what geologic and geochemical features blocked or arrested the pathway to economic success or, even worse, caused loss of a resource, are critical to

  20. The roles of fractional crystallization, magma mixing, crystal mush remobilization and volatile-melt interactions in the genesis of a young basalt-peralkaline rhyolite suite, the greater Olkaria volcanic complex, Kenya Rift valley

    Macdonald, R.; Belkin, H.E.; Fitton, J.G.; Rogers, N.W.; Nejbert, K.; Tindle, A.G.; Marshall, A.S.


    The Greater Olkaria Volcanic Complex is a young (???20 ka) multi-centred lava and dome field dominated by the eruption of peralkaline rhyolites. Basaltic and trachytic magmas have been erupted peripherally to the complex and also form, with mugearites and benmoreites, an extensive suite of magmatic inclusions in the rhyolites. The eruptive rocks commonly represent mixed magmas and the magmatic inclusions are themselves two-, three- or four-component mixes. All rock types may carry xenocrysts of alkali feldspar, and less commonly plagioclase, derived from magma mixing and by remobilization of crystal mushes and/or plutonic rocks. Xenoliths in the range gabbro-syenite are common in the lavas and magmatic inclusions, the more salic varieties sometimes containing silicic glass representing partial melts and ranging in composition from anorthite ?? corundum- to acmite-normative. The peralkaline varieties are broadly similar, in major element terms, to the eruptive peralkaline rhyolites. The basalt-trachyte suite formed by a combination of fractional crystallization, magma mixing and resorption of earlier-formed crystals. Matrix glass in metaluminous trachytes has a peralkaline rhyolitic composition, indicating that the eruptive rhyolites may have formed by fractional crystallization of trachyte. Anomalous trace element enrichments (e.g. ??? 2000 ppm Y in a benmoreite) and negative Ce anomalies may have resulted from various Na- and K-enriched fluids evolving from melts of intermediate composition and either being lost from the system or enriched in other parts of the reservoirs. A small group of nepheline-normative, usually peralkaline, magmatic inclusions was formed by fluid transfer between peralkaline rhyolitic and benmoreitic magmas. The plumbing system of the complex consists of several independent reservoirs and conduits, repeatedly recharged by batches of mafic magma, with ubiquitous magma mixing. ?? The Author 2008. Published by Oxford University Press. All

  1. Distribution and characteristics of volcanic reservoirs in China

    HUANG Yulong; WANG Pujun; CHEN Shuming


    About forty productive oil/gas fields hosted in volcanic reservoirs have been found since 1957 in fourteen basins of China. They can be simply subdivided into two groups, the east and the west. Reservoir volcanic rocks of the east group are predominantly composed of Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous rhyolite and Tertiary basalt, preferred being considered as rift type volcanics developed in the circum-Pacific tectonic regime. Those of the west are Permo-Carboniferous intermediate/basic volcanic rocks, being island-arc type ones developed in paleo-Asian Ocean tectonic regime.

  2. Deposition and immersion-mode nucleation of ice by three distinct samples of volcanic ash

    Schill, G. P.; Genareau, K.; Tolbert, M. A.


    Ice nucleation of volcanic ash controls both ash aggregation and cloud glaciation, which affect atmospheric transport and global climate. Previously, it has been suggested that there is one characteristic ice nucleation efficiency for all volcanic ash, regardless of its composition, when accounting for surface area; however, this claim is derived from data from only two volcanic eruptions. In this work, we have studied the depositional and immersion freezing efficiency of three distinct samples of volcanic ash using Raman microscopy coupled to an environmental cell. Ash from the Fuego (basaltic ash, Guatemala), Soufrière Hills (andesitic ash, Montserrat), and Taupo (Oruanui eruption, rhyolitic ash, New Zealand) volcanoes were chosen to represent different geographical locations and silica content. All ash samples were quantitatively analyzed for both percent crystallinity and mineralogy using X-ray diffraction. In the present study, we find that all three samples of volcanic ash are excellent depositional ice nuclei, nucleating ice from 225 to 235 K at ice saturation ratios of 1.05 ± 0.01, comparable to the mineral dust proxy kaolinite. Since depositional ice nucleation will be more important at colder temperatures, fine volcanic ash may represent a global source of cold-cloud ice nuclei. For immersion freezing relevant to mixed-phase clouds, however, only the Oruanui ash exhibited appreciable heterogeneous ice nucleation activity. Similar to recent studies on mineral dust, we suggest that the mineralogy of volcanic ash may dictate its ice nucleation activity in the immersion mode.

  3. Magma ascent and emplacement in a continental rift setting: lessons from alkaline complexes in active and ancient rift zones

    Hutchison, William; Lloyd, Ryan; Birhanu, Yelebe; Biggs, Juliet; Mather, Tamsin; Pyle, David; Lewi, Elias; Yirgu, Gezahgen; Finch, Adrian


    A key feature of continental rift evolution is the development of large chemically-evolved alkaline magmatic systems in the shallow crust. At active alkaline systems, for example in the East African Rift, the volcanic complexes pose significant hazards to local populations but can also sustain major geothermal resources. In ancient rifts, for example the Gardar province in Southern Greenland, these alkaline magma bodies can host some of the world's largest rare element deposits in resources such as rare earths, niobium and tantalum. Despite their significance, there are major uncertainties about how such magmas are emplaced, the mechanisms that trigger eruptions and the magmatic and hydrothermal processes that generate geothermal and mineral resources. Here we compare observations from active caldera volcanoes in the Ethiopian Rift with compositionally equivalent ancient (1300-1100 Ma) plutonic systems in the Gardar Rift province (Greenland). In the Ethiopian Rift Valley we use InSAR and GPS data to evaluate the temporal and spatial evolution of ground deformation at Aluto and Corbetti calderas. We show that unrest at Aluto is characterized by short (3-6 month) accelerating uplift pulses likely caused by magmatic fluid intrusion at 5 km. At Corbetti, uplift is steady ( 6.6 cm/yr) and sustained over many years with analytical source models suggesting deformation is linked to sill intrusion at depths of 7 km. To evaluate the validity of these contrasting deformation mechanisms (i.e. magmatic fluid intrusion and sill emplacement) we carried out extensive field, structural and geochemical analysis in the roof zones of two alkaline plutons (Ilímaussaq and Motzfeldt) in Greenland. Our results show that the volatile contents (F, Cl, OH and S) of these magmas were exceptionally high and that there is evidence for ponding of magmatic fluids in the roof zone of the magma reservoir. We also identified extensive sill networks at the contact between the magma reservoir and the

  4. Evolution of the central Rio Grande rift, New Mexico: New potassium-argon ages

    Baldridge, W. S.; Damon, P. E.; Shafiqullah, M.; Bridwell, R. J.


    New K sbnd Ar age determinations on mid-Oligocene to Pleistocene volcanic and shallow intrusive rocks from the central Rio Grande rift permit a more detailed understanding of the tectonic and magmatic history of the rift. Initial extension in the region of the central rift may have begun prior to 27 m.y. ago. By 25 m.y. ago broad basins existed and were filling with volcaniclastic sediments derived mainly from volcanic centers in the San Juan and Questa areas. Continued tectonic activity narrowed these basins by 21-19 m.y. ago, indicated in the Santa Fe area by tilting and faulting that immediately postdate 20-m.y.-old latite. Uplift of the Sangre de Cristo, Sandia, and Nacimiento Mountains shed clastic debris of the Santa Fe Group into these basins. Early rift magmatism is characterized by an overlap of mid-Tertiary intermediate intrusive and extrusive activity, extending to 20 m.y. ago, with mafic and ultramafic volcanism, ranging from 25 to 19 m.y. Both volcanism and tectonic activity were minimal during the middle Miocene. About 13 m.y. ago renewed volcanic activity began. Tectonism commenced in the late Miocene, resulting in the present, narrow grabens. The term "Rio Grande rift" should be restricted to these grabens formed during post-mid-Miocene deformation. Widespread eruption of tholeiitic and alkali olivine basalts occurred 3-2 m.y. ago. The Rio Grande drainage system was integrated 4.5-3 m.y. ago, leading to the present erosional regime. These intervals of deformation and magmatism correspond generally with a similar sequence of events in the Basin and Range province south of the Colorado Plateau. This similarity indicates that the Rio Grande rift is not a unique structure in the southwestern U.S., and must be related to the larger context of the entire Basin and Range province.

  5. Mantle Flow Across the Baikal Rift Constrained With Integrated Seismic Measurements

    Lebedev, S.; Meier, T.; van der Hilst, R. D.


    The Baikal Rift is located at the boundary of the stable Siberian Craton and deforming central Mongolia. The origin of the late Cenozoic rifting and volcanism are debated, as is the mantle flow beneath the rift zone. Here we combine new evidence from azimuthally-anisotropic upper-mantle tomography and from a radially-anisotropic inversion of interstation surface-wave dispersion curves with previously published shear-wave-splitting measurements of azimuthal anisotropy across the rift (Gao et al. 1994). While our tomographic model maps isotropic and anisotropic shear-velocity heterogeneity globally, the inversion of interstation phase-velocity measurements produces a single, radially-anisotropic, shear-velocity profile that averages from the rift to 500 km SE of it. The precision and the broad band (8-340 s) of the Rayleigh and Love wave curves ensures high accuracy of the profile. Tomography and shear-wave splitting both give a NW-SE fast direction (perpendicular to the rift) in the vicinity of the rift, changing towards W-E a few hundred kilometers from it. Previously, this has been interpreted as evidence for mantle flow similar to that beneath mid-ocean ridges, with deeper vertical flow directly beneath the rift also proposed. Our radially anisotropic profile, however, shows that while strong anisotropy with SH waves faster than SV waves is present in the thin lithosphere and upper asthenosphere beneath and SE of the rift, no anisotropy is required below 110 km. The tomographic model shows thick cratonic lithosphere north of the rift. These observations suggest that instead of a flow diverging from the rift axis in NW and SE directions, the most likely pattern is the asthenospheric flow in SE direction from beneath the Siberian lithosphere and across the rift. Possible driving forces of the flow are large-scale lithospheric deformation in East Asia and the draining of asthenosphere at W-Pacific subduction zones; a plume beneath the Siberian craton also cannot be

  6. Volcanic hazards of the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory and adjacent areas

    Hackett, W.R. [WRH Associates, Salt Lake City, UT (United States); Smith, R.P. [Lockheed Idaho Technologies Co., Idaho Falls, ID (United States)


    Potential volcanic hazards are assessed, and hazard zone maps are developed for the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory (INEL) and adjacent areas. The basis of the hazards assessment and mapping is the past volcanic history of the INEL region, and the apparent similarity of INEL volcanism with equivalent, well-studied phenomena in other regions of active volcanism, particularly Hawaii and Iceland. The most significant hazards to INEL facilities are associated with basaltic volcanism, chiefly lava flows, which move slowly and mainly threaten property by inundation or burning. Related hazards are volcanic gases and tephra, and ground disturbance associated with the ascent of magma under the volcanic zones. Several volcanic zones are identified in the INEL area. These zones contain most of the volcanic vents and fissures of the region and are inferred to be the most probable sites of future INEL volcanism. Volcanic-recurrence estimates are given for each of the volcanic zones based on geochronology of the lavas, together with the results of field and petrographic investigations concerning the cogenetic relationships of INEL volcanic deposits and associated magma intrusion. Annual probabilities of basaltic volcanism within the INEL volcanic zones range from 6.2 {times} 10{sup {minus}5} per year (average 16,000-year interval between eruptions) for the axial volcanic zone near the southern INEL boundary and the Arco volcanic-rift zone near the western INEL boundary, to 1 {times} 10{sup {minus}5} per year (average 100,000-year interval between eruptions) for the Howe-East Butte volcanic rift zone, a geologically old and poorly defined feature of the central portion of INEL. Three volcanic hazard zone maps are developed for the INEL area: lava flow hazard zones, a tephra (volcanic ash) and gas hazard zone, and a ground-deformation hazard zone. The maps are useful in land-use planning, site selection, and safety analysis.

  7. Geomorphology of the central Red Sea Rift: Determining spreading processes

    Augustin, Nico; van der Zwan, Froukje M.; Devey, Colin W.; Ligi, Marco; Kwasnitschka, Tom; Feldens, Peter; Bantan, Rashad A.; Basaham, Ali S.


    Continental rifting and ocean basin formation is occurring today in the Red Sea, providing a possible modern analogue for the creation of mid-ocean ridges. Yet many of the seafloor features observed along the axis of the Red Sea appear anomalous compared to ancient and modern examples of mid-ocean ridges in other parts of the world, making it unclear, until recently, whether the Red Sea is truly analogous. Recent work suggests that the main morphological differences between the Red Sea Rift (RSR) and other mid-ocean ridges are due to the presence and movement of giant, submarine salt flows, which blanket large portions of the rift valley and thereby the oceanic crust. Using ship-based, high-resolution multibeam bathymetry of the central RSR between 16.5°N and 23°N we focus here on the RSR volcanic terrains not covered by salt and sediments and compare their morphologies to those observed along slow and ultra-slow spreading ridges elsewhere. Regional variations in style and intensity of volcanism can be related to variations in volcanic activity and mantle heat flow. The Red Sea oceanic seafloor shows typical features of mature (ultra)slow-spreading mid-ocean ridges, such as 2nd order discontinuities (overlapping spreading centres) and magma focussing in the segment centres (forming spreading-perpendicular volcanic ridges of thick oceanic crust). The occurrence of melt-salt interaction at locations where salt glaciers blanket the neovolcanic zone, and the absence of large detachment faults are unique features of the central RSR. These features can be related to the young character of the Red Sea and may be applicable to all young oceanic rifts, associated with plumes and/or evaporites. Thus, the RSR falls in line with (ultra)slow-spreading mid-ocean ridges globally, which makes the Red Sea a unique but highly important type example for initiation of slow rifting and seafloor spreading and one of the most interesting targets for future ocean research.


    of the kinetic temperature of the central Ethiopian rift lakes and adjacent highlands. ... component of the surface radiation balance from only one surface measurement derived from NOAA. TM and ... The basin studied is part of the Ethiopian Rift system bounded within the limits .... Topographic conditions, which determine ...

  9. The magmatic budget of Atlantic type rifted margins: is it related to inheritance?

    Manatschal, Gianreto; Tugend, Julia; Picazo, Suzanne; Müntener, Othmar


    In the past, Atlantic type rifted margins were either classified as volcanic or non-volcanic. An increasing number of high quality reflection and refraction seismic surveys and drill hole data show a divergent style of margin architecture and an evolution in which the quantity and distribution of syn-rift magmatism is variable, independently of the amount of extension. Overgeneralized classifications and models assuming simple relations between magmatic and extensional systems are thus inappropriate to describe the formation of rifted margins. More recent studies show that the magmatic evolution of rifted margins is complex and cannot be characterized based on the volume of observed magma alone. On the one hand, so-called "non-volcanic" margins are not necessarily amagmatic, as shown by the results of ODP drilling along the Iberia-Newfoundland rifted margins. On the other hand, magma-rich margins, such as the Norwegian, NW Australian or the Namibia rifted margins show evidence for hyper-extension prior to breakup. These observations suggest that the magmatic budget does not only depend on extension rates but also on the composition and temperature of the decompressing mantle. Moreover, the fact that the magmatic budget may change very abruptly along strike and across the margin is difficult to reconcile with the occurrence of plumes or other deep-seated large-scale mantle phenomena only. These overall observations result in questions on how magmatic and tectonic processes are interacting during rifting and lithospheric breakup and on how far inheritance may control the magmatic budget during rifting. In our presentation we will review results from the South and North Atlantic and the Alpine Tethys domain and will discuss the structural and magmatic evolution of so-called magma-rich and magma-poor rifted margins. In particular, we will try to define when, where and how much magma forms during rifting and lithospheric breakup. The key questions that we aim to address

  10. Rifts in spreading wax layers

    Ragnarsson, R; Santangelo, C D; Bodenschatz, E; Ragnarsson, Rolf; Ford, J Lewis; Santangelo, Christian D; Bodenschatz, Eberhard


    We report experimental results on the rift formation between two freezing wax plates. The plates were pulled apart with constant velocity, while floating on the melt, in a way akin to the tectonic plates of the earth's crust. At slow spreading rates, a rift, initially perpendicular to the spreading direction, was found to be stable, while above a critical spreading rate a "spiky" rift with fracture zones almost parallel to the spreading direction developed. At yet higher spreading rates a second transition from the spiky rift to a zig-zag pattern occurred. In this regime the rift can be characterized by a single angle which was found to be dependent on the spreading rate. We show that the oblique spreading angles agree with a simple geometrical model. The coarsening of the zig-zag pattern over time and the three-dimensional structure of the solidified crust are also discussed.

  11. Triassic rift-related sedimentary basins in northern Chile (24° 29°S)

    Suarez, M.; Bell, C. M.


    Triassic rocks in northern Chile (latitude 24°-29°S) include marine and continental rift-related sedimentary deposits, associated with basaltic, andesitic, and silicic volcanic rocks. Five main successions include the deposits of two marine basins (Profeta and San Félix) separated by three continental basins (Cifuncho, La Ternera, and La Coipa). The marine strata include turbidites and debris flow deposits interpreted as coarse-grained fan-delta sediments. The continental sediments include lacustrine fan delta, open lake, braided river, alluvial fan, and sabkha deposits. The widespread fan-delta systems (both marine and lacustrine), together with abrupt lateral and vertical facies discontinuities and large-scale depositional cycles, are indicative of rift-controlled sedimentation. The associated magmatic activity indicates that this rifting was the product of subduction-related extension or strike-slip movement on the active plate margin. Triassic rifting was followed in Late Triassic to Early Jurassic times by widespread thermotectonic subsidence.

  12. Listric growth faults in the Kenya Rift Valley

    Jones, W. B.

    Many of the major faults in the Kenya Rift Valley are curved in section, were active over considerable periods and form sets which are related in space and time. They can, therefore, be regarded as systems of listric growth faults. The Elgeyo Fault marks the western limit of rift structures at this latitude and displaces the basement surface by up to about 6 km. The Kamasia Hills are a block rotated above this fault plane. Movement on the Elgeyo Fault has been grossly continuous since at least 16 Ma ago but deposition of volcanics and sediments has generally kept pace with the growth of the escarpment. The Kaparaina Arch is a rollover anticline on the downthrown side of the Saimo Fault on the eastern side of the Kamasia Hills. On the eastern side of the rift, the block between the Bogoria and Wasages-Marmanet Faults has shown continued rotation since about 15 Ma. The Pleistocene lavas on the rift floor here show rollover into the Bogoria Fault and have formed a facing near the top of the escarpment. Area balancing calculations suggest depths to décollement of 25 km for the Elgeyo Fault, 6 km for the Saimo Fault and 12 km for the Bogoria Fault. The most direct evidence for the listric nature of the faults is provided by microearthquakes near Lake Manyara which appear to lie on fault planes connected to surface escarpments.

  13. Lucky Strike seamount: Implications for the emplacement and rifting of segment-centered volcanoes at slow spreading mid-ocean ridges

    Escartín, J.; Soule, S. A.; Cannat, M.; Fornari, D. J.; Düşünür, D.; Garcia, R.


    history of emplacement, tectonic evolution, and dismemberment of a central volcano within the rift valley of the slow spreading Mid-Atlantic Ridge at the Lucky Strike Segment is deduced using near-bottom sidescan sonar imagery and visual observations. Volcano emplacement is rapid (spreading may eventually split it. At Lucky Strike, this results in two modes of crustal construction. Eruptions and tectonic activity focus at a narrow graben that bisects the central volcano and contains the youngest lava flows, accumulating a thick layer of extrusives. Away from the volcano summit, deformation and volcanic emplacement is distributed throughout the rift valley floor, lacking a clear locus of accretion and deformation. Volcanic emplacement on the rift floor is characterized by axial volcanic ridges fed by dikes that propagate from the central axial magma chamber. The mode of rapid volcano construction and subsequent rifting observed at the Lucky Strike seamount is common at other central volcanoes along the global mid-ocean ridge system.

  14. Volcanic-plutonic parity and the differentiation of the continental crust.

    Keller, C Brenhin; Schoene, Blair; Barboni, Melanie; Samperton, Kyle M; Husson, Jon M


    The continental crust is central to the biological and geological history of Earth. However, crustal heterogeneity has prevented a thorough geochemical comparison of its primary igneous building blocks-volcanic and plutonic rocks-and the processes by which they differentiate to felsic compositions. Our analysis of a comprehensive global data set of volcanic and plutonic whole-rock geochemistry shows that differentiation trends from primitive basaltic to felsic compositions for volcanic versus plutonic samples are generally indistinguishable in subduction-zone settings, but are divergent in continental rifts. Offsets in major- and trace-element differentiation patterns in rift settings suggest higher water content in plutonic magmas and reduced eruptibility of hydrous silicate magmas relative to dry rift volcanics. In both tectonic settings, our results indicate that fractional crystallization, rather than crustal melting, is predominantly responsible for the production of intermediate and felsic magmas, emphasizing the role of mafic cumulates as a residue of crustal differentiation.

  15. Mesozoic rifting and basin inversion along the northern African Tethyan margin: an overview

    Guiraud, R. [Universite de Montpellier II (France). Laboratoire de Geophysique et Tectonique


    The northern African Tethyan margin registered three major rifting episodes from the latest Palaeozoic-earliest Mesozoic to the earliest Cenozoic. Break-up of Gondwana was initiated in the late Carboniferous. Along the northern African-Arabian plate margin rifting propagated westward from the northeastern Arabian margin to Morocco during the Permian and Triasssic, and was accompanied by Mid-Late triassi-earliest Liassic extensive alkaline flow basalts. Rifting continued during the Liassic, e.g. in the Moghrebian Atlas troughs. A second stage of rifting occurred in the Late Jurassic and continued into, or was rejuvenated during the Early Cretaceous. Along the east Mediterranean margin, some large E-W trending rifts formed often with associated volcanism, e.g. southern Sirt and Abu Gharadig. Most researchers believe the oceanization of the eastern Mediterranean basin occurred at this time. During the Mesozoic, therefore, the northern margin of the African-Arabian plate registered both rifting resulting in the oceanization of the Tethys and rifting resulting from the initiation of the closure of the Tethys. The intraplate domain exhibited echoes of the tectonic events affecting the margin. (author)

  16. The Importance of Magmatic Fluids in Continental Rifting in East Africa

    Muirhead, J.; Kattenhorn, S. A.; Ebinger, C. J.; Lee, H.; Fischer, T. P.; Roecker, S. W.; Kianji, G.


    The breakup of strong continental lithosphere requires more than far-field tectonic forces. Growing evidence for early-stage cratonic rift zones points to the importance of heat, magma and volatile transfer in driving lithospheric strength reduction. The relative contributions of these processes are fundamental to our understanding of continental rifting. We present a synthesis of results from geological, geochemical and geophysical studies in one of the most seismically and volcanically active sectors of the East African Rift (Kenya-Tanzania border) to investigate the role of fluids during early-stage rifting (integrated with subsurface imaging and fault kinematic data derived from the 38-station CRAFTI broadband seismic array. Teleseismic and abundant local earthquakes enable assessment of the state-of-stress and b-values as a function of depth. High Vp/Vs ratios and tomographic imaging suggest the presence of fluids in the crust, with high pore fluid pressures driving failure at lower tectonic stress. Together, these cross-disciplinary data provide compelling evidence that early-stage rifting in East Africa is assisted by fluids exsolved from deep magma bodies, some of which are imaged in the lower crust. We assert that the flux of deep magmatic fluids during rift initiation plays a key role in weakening lithosphere and localizing strain. High surface gas fluxes, fault-fed hydrothermal springs and persistent seismicity highlight the East African Rift as the ideal natural laboratory for investigating fluid-driven faulting processes in extensional tectonic environments.

  17. Seismic volcanostratigraphy of large, extrusive complexes in continental rift basins of Northeast China:Analysis of general bedding patterns in volcanostratigraphy and their seismic reflection configurations

    衣健; 王璞珺; 高有峰; 陈崇阳; 赵然磊


    The aim of this work is to establish volcanic seismic reflection configuration models in the rift basins of Northeast China from a new perspective, the volcanostratigraphic structure. Accordingly, the volcanostratigraphic structure of an outcrop near the Hailaier Rift Basin was analyzed to understand the characteristics and causal factors of physical boundaries. Further, 3D seismic reflection data and analysis of deep boreholes in the Songliao Rift Basin were used to establish the relationship between volcanic seismic reflection configurations and volcanostratigraphic structures. These studies suggested that in volcanic successions, physical boundaries coincide with volcanic boundaries, and their distributions are controlled by the stacking patterns of volcanic units. Therefore, volcanic seismic reflection configurations can be interpreted in terms of the stacking patterns of volcanic units. These are also referred to as general bedding patterns in volcanostratigraphy. Furthermore, four typical seismic reflection configurations were identified, namely, the chaotic, the parallel continuous, the hummocky, the multi-mound superimposed and the composite. The corresponding interpretation models comprised single massive unit, vertical, intersectional, lateral multi-mound, and composite stacking patterns. The hummocky and composite reflection configurations with intersectional and composite stacking patterns are the most favorable for the exploration of volcanic reservoirs in rift basins.

  18. A submarine perspective of the Honolulu Volcanics, Oahu

    Clague, David A.; Paduan, Jennifer B.; McIntosh, William C.; Cousens, Brian L.; Davis, Alicé S.; Reynolds, Jennifer R.


    Lavas and volcaniclastic deposits were observed and collected from 4 submarine cones that are part of the Honolulu Volcanics on Oahu, Hawaii. The locations of these and a few additional, but unsampled, vents demonstrate that nearly all the vents are located on or very close to the shoreline of Oahu, with the most distal vent just 12 km offshore. The clastic samples and outcrops range from coarse breccias to cross-bedded ash deposits and show that explosive volcanism at depths between about 350 and 590 m depth played a part in forming these volcanic cones. The eruptive styles appear to be dominantly effusive to strombolian at greater depths, but apparently include violent phreatomagmatic explosive activity at the shallower sites along the submarine southwest extension of the Koko Rift. The compositions of the recovered samples are broadly similar to the strongly alkalic subaerial Honolulu Volcanics lavas, but the submarine lavas, erupted further from the Koolau caldera, have slightly more radiogenic Sr isotopic ratios, and trace element patterns that are distinct from either the subaerial Honolulu Volcanics or the submarine North Arch lavas. These patterns are characterized by moderate to strong positive Sr and P anomalies, and moderate to strong negative Cs, Rb, U, Th, Zr, and Hf anomalies. Most samples have strong negative K and moderate negative Ti anomalies, as do all subaerial Honolulu Volcanics and North Arch samples, but one group of samples from the Koko Rift lack this chemical signature. The data are consistent with more garnet in the source region for the off-shore samples than for either the on-shore Honolulu Volcanics lavas. New Ar-Ar ages show that eruptions at the submarine vents and Diamond Head occurred between about 0.5 Ma and 0.1 Ma, with the youngest ages from the Koko Rift. These ages are in general agreement with most published ages for the formation and suggest that some much younger ages reported previously from the Koko Rift are probably

  19. The distribution and hydrogeological controls of fluoride in the groundwater of central Ethiopian rift and adjacent highlands

    Ayenew, Tenalem


    Occurrence of fluoride (F) in groundwater has drawn worldwide attention, since it has considerable impact on human health. In Ethiopia high concentrations of F in groundwaters used for community water supply have resulted in extensive dental and skeletal fluorosis. As a part of a broader study, the distribution of F in groundwater has been investigated, and compared with bedrock geology and pertinent hydrochemical variables. The result indicates extreme spatial variations. High F concentration is often associated with active and sub-active regional thermal fields and acidic volcanics within high temperature rift floor. Variations in F can also be related to changes in calcium concentration resulting from dissolution of calcium minerals and mixing with waters of different chemical composition originated from variable hydrogeological environment across the rift valley. The concentration of F dramatically declines from the rift towards the highlands with the exception of scattered points associated with thermal springs confined in local volcanic centers. There are also interactions of F-rich alkaline lakes and the surrounding groundwater. Meteoric waters recharging volcanic aquifers become enriched with respect to F along the groundwater flow path from highland recharge areas to rift discharge areas. Locally wells drilled along large rift faults acting as conduits of fresh highland waters show relatively lower F. These areas are likely to be possible sources of better quality waters within the rift. The result of this study has important implications on site selection for water well drilling.

  20. Calibration of a transient transport model to tritium measurements in rivers and streams in the Western Lake Taupo catchment, New Zealand

    Gusyev, M. A.; Toews, M.; U. Morgenstern; Stewart, M.; C. Daughney; Hadfield, J.


    Here we present a general approach of calibrating transient transport models to tritium concentrations in river waters developed for the MT3DMS/MODFLOW model of the Western Lake Taupo catchment, New Zealand. Tritium is a time-dependent tracer with radioactive half-life of 12.32 yr. In the transport model, the tritium input (measured in rain) passes through the groundwater system, and the modelled tritium concentrations are compared to the measured tritium concentrations in the river outl...

  1. Teleseismic body wave tomography within a highly extended continental rift: the Woodlark Rift, Papua New Guinea

    Eilon, Z.; Abers, G. A.; Jin, G.; Kim, Y.; Gaherty, J. B.


    The Woodlark Rift, Papua New Guinea, has been a region of westward-propagating continental extension for 6-8 Ma, grading westward from seafloor spreading to newly thinned continent. The D'Entrecasteaux Islands (DIs) lie immediately to the west of the youngest spreading centres in continental crust that has undergone 140-190 km of extension. These islands are dominated by metamorphic core complexes (MCCs) containing 5-6 Ma ultra-high pressure (UHP) coesite-eclogite exhumed at ~20 mm/yr coeval with extension. An array of 31 PASSCAL broadband seismometers and 8 broadband OBSs was installed around the region from 2010-2011 to investigate the thinned continent close to the onset of seafloor spreading. We present results of a teleseismic P- and S- wave tomography study that images the mantle beneath the rapidly extending continent. Preliminary observations include strong azimuthal dependence of differential travel times, indicating significant lateral velocity variations and inferred thermal gradients. Using Ps receiver functions and SsPmP reflections, we estimate variations in Moho depth to correct for the crustal effect on travel times. We observe large (>1s) travel time delays beneath the DIs in both P and S arrivals, while stations on the Trobriand Islands and Papuan Peninsula exhibit travel time deficits of 1-2 s. This indicates that lithosphere is thinnest beneath the DIs, along the axis of the rift, in agreement with the location of Quaternary volcanism and consistent with results from surface waves [Ge et al., AGU2013 abstract] and a previous, lower-resolution tomographic study nearby. There is also evidence for moderately thinned lithosphere in the basin immediately south of the DIs. We have previously established strong, spreading-parallel anisotropy from SKS splitting caused by mantle olivine fabric beneath the DIs and the Trobriand Platform, inferred to represent asthenospheric flow in response to rifting. Detailed tomography will reveal how thinning of

  2. Deposition and immersion mode nucleation of ice by three distinct samples of volcanic ash using Raman spectroscopy

    Schill, G. P.; Genareau, K.; Tolbert, M. A.


    Ice nucleation on volcanic ash controls both ash aggregation and cloud glaciation, which affect atmospheric transport and global climate. Previously, it has been suggested that there is one characteristic ice nucleation efficiency for all volcanic ash, regardless of its composition, when accounting for surface area; however, this claim is derived from data from only two volcanic eruptions. In this work, we have studied the depositional and immersion freezing efficiency of three distinct samples of volcanic ash using Raman Microscopy coupled to an environmental cell. Ash from the Fuego (basaltic ash, Guatemala), Soufrière Hills (andesitic ash, Montserrat), and Taupo (Oruanui euption, rhyolitic ash, New Zealand) volcanoes were chosen to represent different geographical locations and silica content. All ash samples were quantitatively analyzed for both percent crystallinity and mineralogy using X-ray diffraction. In the present study, we find that all three samples of volcanic ash are excellent depositional ice nuclei, nucleating ice from 225-235 K at ice saturation ratios of 1.05 ± 0.01, comparable to the mineral dust proxy kaolinite. Since depositional ice nucleation will be more important at colder temperatures, fine volcanic ash may represent a global source of cold-cloud ice nuclei. For immersion freezing relevant to mixed-phase clouds, however, only the Oruanui ash exhibited heterogeneous ice nucleation activity. Similar to recent studies on mineral dust, we suggest that the mineralogy of volcanic ash may dictate its ice nucleation activity in the immersion mode.

  3. Evaluation of the Lithospheric Contribution to Southern Rio Grande Rift Mafic Melts

    Konter, J. G.; Crocker, L.; Anaya, L. M.; Rooney, T. O.


    As continental rifting proceeds, the accommodation of lithospheric thinning by mechanical extension and magmatic intrusion represents an important but poorly constrained tectonic process. Insight into role of the magmatic component may come from the composition of volcanic products, which can record magma-lithosphere interactions. The volcanic activity in continental rift environments is frequently characterized by bimodal associations of mafic and silicic volcanism with heterogenous lithospheric contributions. We present a new integrated data set from several mafic volcanic fields in the Rio Grande Rift, consisting of major and trace element compositions, as well as isotopes. This data set provides insight into asthenospheric melting processes and interactions with the overlying lithosphere. The melting processes and the related extensional volcanism is the result of foundering of the Farallon slab. Large volume silicic eruptions such as those in the Sierra Madre Occidental originate from a large contribution of lithospheric melting, with a subordinate asthenospheric contribution. In contrast, Late Tertiary and Quaternary basaltic volcanic fields in the Rio Grande Rift were likely sourced in the asthenosphere and did not reside in the lithosphere for substantial periods. As a result the region is the ideal natural laboratory to investigate the interaction of asthenospheric melts with the lithosphere. In particular the wide array of volcanic fields contain multiple xenolith localities, such as Kilbourne Hole, providing direct samples of lithosphere and crust. Although previous studies have focused on correlations between amount of extension related to Farallon slab foundering, volcanic compositions, and their mantle sources, we present data that suggest that some compositional signatures may pre-date current tectonic processes. Radiogenic isotope data from several volcanic fields in New Mexico show a converging pattern in Pb isotope compositions, focusing on the

  4. Cenozoic extension in the Kenya Rift from low-temperature thermochronology: Links to diachronous spatiotemporal evolution of rifting in East Africa

    Torres Acosta, Verónica; Bande, Alejandro; Sobel, Edward R.; Parra, Mauricio; Schildgen, Taylor F.; Stuart, Finlay; Strecker, Manfred R.


    The cooling history of rift shoulders and the subsidence history of rift basins are cornerstones for reconstructing the morphotectonic evolution of extensional geodynamic provinces, assessing their role in paleoenvironmental changes and evaluating the resource potential of their basin fills. Our apatite fission track and zircon (U-Th)/He data from the Samburu Hills and the Elgeyo Escarpment in the northern and central sectors of the Kenya Rift indicate a broadly consistent thermal evolution of both regions. Results of thermal modeling support a three-phased thermal history since the early Paleocene. The first phase (~65-50 Ma) was characterized by rapid cooling of the rift shoulders and may be coeval with faulting and sedimentation in the Anza Rift basin, now located in the subsurface of the Turkana depression and areas to the east in northern Kenya. In the second phase, very slow cooling or slight reheating occurred between ~45 and 15 Ma as a result of either stable surface conditions, very slow exhumation, or subsidence. The third phase comprised renewed rapid cooling starting at ~15 Ma. This final cooling represents the most recent stage of rifting, which followed widespread flood-phonolite emplacement and has shaped the present-day landscape through rift shoulder uplift, faulting, basin filling, protracted volcanism, and erosion. When compared with thermochronologic and geologic data from other sectors of the East African Rift System, extension appears to be diachronous, spatially disparate, and partly overlapping, likely driven by interactions between mantle-driven processes and crustal heterogeneities, rather than the previously suggested north-south migrating influence of a mantle plume.



    This paper is concentrated on Cenozoic volcanism and geothermal resources in Northeast China. There are a lot of Cenozoic volcanoes, a large area of volcanic rocks, a large number of active faults and rich geothermal resources in Northeast China. The time and space characteristics of Cenozoic volcanism and the space distribution characters of hot springs and high geothermal flux regions in Northeast China are described and discussed on the basis of geological, geothermal, drilling and volcanological data. It is revealed that the hot springs and high geothermal flux regions are re lated to the Cenozoic volcanism, rifting and faulting in Northeast China. It is especially emphasized that the hot springs and high geothermal anomaly areas are controlled by active deep faults. It is proposed that the Cenozoic volcanism re gions, rift basins, active fault belts, activated plate suture zones and large earthquake occurrence points are the best areas for prospecting geothermal resources. The geothermal resources in younger volcanic zones are richer than those in older volcanic belts. The hot springs and active or activated faults might be a very good clue for looking for geothermal resources.

  6. Distributed deformation ahead of the Cocos-Nazca Rift at the Galapagos triple junction

    Smith, Deborah K.; Schouten, Hans; Zhu, Wen-lu; Montési, Laurent G. J.; Cann, Johnson R.


    The Galapagos triple junction is not a simple ridge-ridge-ridge (RRR) triple junction. The Cocos-Nazca Rift (C-N Rift) tip does not meet the East Pacific Rise (EPR). Instead, two secondary rifts form the link: Incipient Rift at 2°40‧N and Dietz Deep volcanic ridge, the southern boundary of the Galapagos microplate (GMP), at 1°10‧N. Recently collected bathymetry data are used to investigate the regional tectonics prior to the establishment of the GMP (∼1.5 Ma). South of C-N Rift a band of northeast-trending cracks cuts EPR-generated abyssal hills. It is a mirror image of a band of cracks previously identified north of C-N Rift on the same age crust. In both areas, the western ends of the cracks terminate against intact abyssal hills suggesting that each crack initiated at the EPR spreading center and cut eastward into pre-existing topography. Each crack formed a short-lived triple junction until it was abandoned and a new crack and triple junction initiated nearby. Between 2.5 and 1.5 Ma, the pattern of cracking is remarkably symmetric about C-N Rift providing support for a crack interaction model in which crack initiation at the EPR axis is controlled by stresses associated with the tip of the westward-propagating C-N Rift. The model also shows that offsets of the EPR axis may explain times when cracking is not symmetric. South of C-N Rift, cracks are observed on seafloor as old as 10.5 Ma suggesting that this triple junction has not been a simple RRR triple junction during that time.

  7. The development of extension and magmatism in the Red Sea rift of Afar

    Keir, Derek; Bastow, Ian D.; Pagli, Carolina; Chambers, Emma L.


    Despite the importance of continental breakup in plate tectonics, precisely how extensional processes such as brittle faulting, ductile plate stretching, and magma intrusion evolve in space and time during the development of new ocean basins remains poorly understood. The rifting of Arabia from Africa in the Afar depression is an ideal natural laboratory to address this problem since the region exposes subaerially the tectonically active transition from continental rifting to incipient seafloor spreading. We review recent constraints on along-axis variations in rift morphology, crustal and mantle structure, the distribution and style of ongoing faulting, subsurface magmatism and surface volcanism in the Red Sea rift of Afar to understand processes ultimately responsible for the formation of magmatic rifted continental margins. Our synthesis shows that there is a fundamental change in rift morphology from central Afar northward into the Danakil depression, spatially coincident with marked thinning of the crust, an increase in the volume of young basalt flows, and subsidence of the land towards and below sea-level. The variations can be attributed to a northward increase in proportion of extension by ductile plate stretching at the expense of magma intrusion. This is likely in response to a longer history of localised heating and weakening in a narrower rift. Thus, although magma intrusion accommodates strain for a protracted period during rift development, the final stages of breakup are dominated by a phase of plate stretching with a shift from intrusive to extrusive magmatism. This late-stage pulse of decompression melting due to plate thinning may be responsible for the formation of seaward dipping reflector sequences of basalts and sediments, which are ubiquitous at magmatic rifted margins worldwide.

  8. The Lake Albert Rift (uganda, East African Rift System): Deformation, Basin and Relief Evolution Since 17 Ma

    Brendan, Simon; François, Guillocheau; Cécile, Robin; Olivier, Dauteuil; Thierry, Nalpas; Martin, Pickford; Brigitte, Senut; Philippe, Lays; Philippe, Bourges; Martine, Bez


    This study is based on a coupled basin infilling study and a landforms analysis of the Lake Albert Rift located at the northern part of the western branch of the East African Rift. The basin infilling study is based on both subsurface data and outcrops analysis. The objective was to (1) obtain an age model based on onshore mammals biozones, (2) to reconstruct the 3D architecture of the rift using sequence stratigraphy correlations and seismic data interpretation, (3) to characterize the deformation and its changes through times and (4) to quantify the accommodation for several time intervals. The infilling essentially consists of isopach fault-bounded units composed of lacustrine deposits wherein were characterized two major unconformities dated at 6.2 Ma (Uppermost Miocene) and 2.7 Ma (Pliocene-Pleistocene boundary), coeval with major subsidence and climatic changes. The landforms analysis is based on the characterization and relative dating (geometrical relationships with volcanism) of Ugandan landforms which consist of stepped planation surfaces (etchplains and peplians) and incised valleys. We here proposed a seven-steps reconstruction of the deformation-erosion-sedimentation relationships of the Lake Albert Basin and its catchments: - 55-45 Ma: formation of laterites corresponding to the African Surface during the very humid period of the Lower-Middle Eocene; - 45-22: stripping of the African Surface in response of the beginning of the East-African Dome uplift and formation of a pediplain which associated base level is the Atlantic Ocean; - 17-2.5 Ma: Initiation of the Lake Albert Basin around 17 Ma and creation of local base levels (Lake Albert, Edward and George) on which three pediplains tend to adapt; - 18 - 16 Ma to 6.2 Ma: "Flexural" stage (subsidence rate: 150-200 m/Ma; sedimentation rate 1.3 km3/Ma between 17 and 12 Ma and 0.6 km3/Ma from 12 to 6 Ma) - depocenters location (southern part of Lake Albert Basin) poorly controlled by fault; - 6.2 Ma to 2

  9. Diffuse degassing at Longonot volcano, Kenya: Implications for CO2 flux in continental rifts

    Robertson, Elspeth; Biggs, Juliet; Edmonds, Marie; Clor, Laura; Fischer, Tobias P.; Vye-Brown, Charlotte; Kianji, Gladys; Koros, Wesley; Kandie, Risper


    Magma movement, fault structures and hydrothermal systems influence volatile emissions at rift volcanoes. Longonot is a Quaternary caldera volcano located in the southern Kenyan Rift, where regional extension controls recent shallow magma ascent. Here we report the results of a soil carbon dioxide (CO2) survey in the vicinity of Longonot volcano, as well as fumarolic gas compositions and carbon isotope data. The total non-biogenic CO2 degassing is estimated at < 300 kg d- 1, and is largely controlled by crater faults and fractures close to the summit. Thus, recent volcanic structures, rather than regional tectonics, control fluid pathways and degassing. Fumarolic gases are characterised by a narrow range in carbon isotope ratios (δ13C), from - 4.7‰ to - 6.4‰ (vs. PDB) suggesting a magmatic origin with minor contributions from biogenic CO2. Comparison with other degassing measurements in the East African Rift shows that records of historical eruptions or unrest do not correspond directly to the magnitude of CO2 flux from volcanic centres, which may instead reflect the current size and characteristics of the subsurface magma reservoir. Interestingly, the integrated CO2 flux from faulted rift basins is reported to be an order of magnitude higher than that from any of the volcanic centres for which CO2 surveys have so far been reported.

  10. Seismic hazard of the Kivu rift (western branch, East African Rift system): new neotectonic map and seismotectonic zonation model

    Delvaux, Damien; Mulumba, Jean-Luc; Sebagenzi Mwene Ntabwoba, Stanislas; Fiama Bondo, Silvanos; Kervyn, François; Havenith, Hans-Balder


    setting, with the lowest value in the volcanically active Virunga - Rutshuru zone, highest in the currently non-volcanic parts of Lake Kivu, Rusizi valley and North Tanganyika rift zone, and intermediate in the regions flanking the axial rift zone. Those are to be considered as preliminary values, as there are a number of important uncertainties such as the heterogeneity and relatively short duration of the instrumental seismic catalogue used (60 years), the absence of locally derived attenuation laws and thus the choice of the attenuation laws used, and the seismic zonation scheme. Delvaux, D. et al., 2016. Journal of African Earth Sciences, doi: 10.1016/j.jafrearsci.2016.10.004.

  11. Tectonic inheritance in the development of the Kivu - north Tanganyika rift segment of the East African Rift System: role of pre-existing structures of Precambrian to early Palaeozoic origin.

    Delvaux, Damien; Fiama Bondo, Silvanos; Ganza Bamulezi, Gloire


    The present architecture of the junction between the Kivu rift basin and the north Tanganyika rift basin is that of a typical accommodation zone trough the Ruzizi depression. However, this structure appeared only late in the development of the Western branch of the East African Rift System and is the result of a strong control by pre-existing structures of Precambrian to early Palaeozoic origin. In the frame of a seismic hazard assessment of the Kivu rift region, we (Delvaux et al., 2016) constructed homogeneous geological, structural and neotectonic maps cross the five countries of this region, mapped the pre-rift, early rift and Late Quaternary faults and compiled the existing knowledge on thermal springs (assumed to be diagnostic of current tectonic activity along faults). We also produced also a new catalogue of historical and instrumental seismicity and defined the seismotectonic characteristics (stress field, depth of faulting) using published focal mechanism data. Rifting in this region started at about 11 Ma by initial doming and extensive fissural basaltic volcanism along normal faults sub-parallel to the axis of the future rift valley, as a consequence of the divergence between the Nubia and the Victoria plate. In a later stage, starting around 8-7 Ma, extension localized along a series of major border faults individualizing the subsiding tectonic basins from the uplifting rift shoulders, while lava evolved towards alkali basaltic composition until 2.6 Ma. During this stage, initial Kivu rift valley was extending linearly in a SSW direction, much further than its the actual termination at Bukavu, into the Mwenga-Kamituga graben, up to Namoya. The SW extremity of this graben was linked via a long oblique transfer zone to the central part of Lake Tanganyika, itself reactivating an older ductile-brittle shear zone. In the late Quaternary-early Holocene, volcanism migrated towards the center of the basin, with the development of the Virunga volcanic massif

  12. Architecture of the intracontinental Jaibaras Rift, Brazil, based on geophysical data

    Pedrosa, Nilo C.; Vidotti, Roberta M.; Fuck, Reinhardt A.; Castelo Branco, R. M. G.; Almeida, Afonso R. de; Silva, Nilton C. Vieira; Braga, Luiz R. C.


    Qualitative and quantitative integration and interpretation of magnetic, gravity and magnetotelluric data help to determine the internal architecture of the Jaibaras rift, and allow assessing the evolution of the Jaibaras Rift within the Precambrian crystalline basement of Borborema Province, NE Brazil. This was achieved by 2D joint modeling of magnetic and gravity data in five sections across the main axis of the Jaibaras Rift. Surface data, rock density measurements, depth constraints from 2D Euler deconvolution and geophysical information from previous work in the area were integrated to constrain the modeling. The magnetic and gravity profiles of the Jaibaras Rift indicate estimated source bodies at depths up to 2.5 km, showing complex configuration for the structural framework, with a set of asymmetric grabens and horsts. The 2D magnetotelluric inversion shows that the Jaibaras Rift is marked by low resistivity values, and maximum thickness of the sedimentary package up to approximately 3 km. Shallow dipping conductive material may represent either a suture zone between the Ceará Central and Médio Coreaú domains or a set of fractures due to horizontal σ1 stress in the Ceará Central Domain. The Jaibaras Rift displays a very complex internal structure, with discontinuous sequences of grabens and horsts, and a significant volume of surface and subsurface volcanic rocks. The sedimentary packages with volcanic rift sequences have variable thicknesses, from 1 to 3 km. These rock units are controlled by normal faults that developed from older discontinuities, such as the Transbrasiliano lineament.


    Schiffer, Christian; Petersen, Kenni Dinesen

    underlain by high-velocity and density bodies (“Lower Crustal Bodies”, LCBs). A widely accepted theory of the origin of LCBs is that they were emplaced by magmatic underplating at volcanic margins. At the same time mantle serpentinization is thought to create geophysically similar structures at non...... and shows that such structures can ‘survive’ subsequent rifting and continental break up. Our model is a simple alternative that explains observations at passive margins and rift zones by accounting for the observation that most passive margins are sub-parallel to earlier shortening and extension events...

  14. High Resolution Aircraft Scanner Mapping of Geothermal and Volcanic Areas

    Mongillo, M.A.; Cochrane, G.R.; Wood, C.P.; Shibata, Y.


    High spectral resolution GEOSCAN Mkll multispectral aircraft scanner imagery has been acquired, at 3-6 m spatial resolutions, over much of the Taupo Volcanic Zone as part of continuing investigations aimed at developing remote sensing techniques for exploring and mapping geothermal and volcanic areas. This study examined the 24-band: visible, near-IR (NIR), mid-IR (MIR) and thermal-IR (TIR) imagery acquired over Waiotapu geothermal area (3 m spatial resolution) and White Island volcano (6 m resolution). Results show that color composite images composed of visible and NIR wavelengths that correspond to color infrared (CIR) photographic wavelengths can be useful for distinguishing among bare ground, water and vegetation features and, in certain cases, for mapping various vegetation types. However, combinations which include an MIR band ({approx} 2.2 {micro}m) with either visible and NIR bands, or two NIR bands, are the most powerful for mapping vegetation types, water bodies, and bare and hydrothermally altered ground. Combinations incorporating a daytime TIR band with NIR and MIR bands are also valuable for locating anomalously hot features and distinguishing among different types of surface hydrothermal alteration.

  15. Seismic hazard assessment of the Kivu rift segment based on a new seismotectonic zonation model (western branch, East African Rift system)

    Delvaux, Damien; Mulumba, Jean-Luc; Sebagenzi, Mwene Ntabwoba Stanislas; Bondo, Silvanos Fiama; Kervyn, François; Havenith, Hans-Balder


    In the frame of the Belgian GeoRisCA multi-risk assessment project focusing on the Kivu and northern Tanganyika rift region in Central Africa, a new probabilistic seismic hazard assessment has been performed for the Kivu rift segment in the central part of the western branch of the East African rift system. As the geological and tectonic setting of this region is incompletely known, especially the part lying in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, we compiled homogeneous cross-border tectonic and neotectonic maps. The seismic risk assessment is based on a new earthquake catalogue based on the ISC reviewed earthquake catalogue and supplemented by other local catalogues and new macroseismic epicenter data spanning 126 years, with 1068 events. The magnitudes have been homogenized to Mw and aftershocks removed. The final catalogue used for the seismic hazard assessment spans 60 years, from 1955 to 2015, with 359 events and a magnitude of completeness of 4.4. The seismotectonic zonation into 7 seismic source areas was done on the basis of the regional geological structure, neotectonic fault systems, basin architecture and distribution of thermal springs and earthquake epicenters. The Gutenberg-Richter seismic hazard parameters were determined by the least square linear fit and the maximum likelihood method. Seismic hazard maps have been computed using existing attenuation laws with the Crisis 2012 software. We obtained higher PGA values (475 years return period) for the Kivu rift region than the previous estimates. They also vary laterally in function of the tectonic setting, with the lowest value in the volcanically active Virunga - Rutshuru zone, highest in the currently non-volcanic parts of Lake Kivu, Rusizi valley and North Tanganyika rift zone, and intermediate in the regions flanking the axial rift zone.

  16. Volcanic gas

    McGee, Kenneth A.; Gerlach, Terrance M.


    In Roman mythology, Vulcan, the god of fire, was said to have made tools and weapons for the other gods in his workshop at Olympus. Throughout history, volcanoes have frequently been identified with Vulcan and other mythological figures. Scientists now know that the “smoke" from volcanoes, once attributed by poets to be from Vulcan’s forge, is actually volcanic gas naturally released from both active and many inactive volcanoes. The molten rock, or magma, that lies beneath volcanoes and fuels eruptions, contains abundant gases that are released to the surface before, during, and after eruptions. These gases range from relatively benign low-temperature steam to thick hot clouds of choking sulfurous fume jetting from the earth. Water vapor is typically the most abundant volcanic gas, followed by carbon dioxide and sulfur dioxide. Other volcanic gases are hydrogen sulfide, hydrochloric acid, hydrogen, carbon monoxide, hydrofluoric acid, and other trace gases and volatile metals. The concentrations of these gas species can vary considerably from one volcano to the next.

  17. Modelling of sea floor spreading initiation and rifted continental margin formation

    Tymms, V. J.; Isimm Team


    Recent observations of depth dependent (heterogeneous) stretching where upper crustal extension is much less than that of the lower crust and lithospheric mantle at both non-volcanic and volcanic margins plus the discovery of broad domains of exhumed continental mantle at non-volcanic rifted margins are not predicted by existing quantitative models of rifted margin formation which are usually based on intra-continental rift models subjected to very large stretching factors. New conceptual and quantitative models of rifted margin formation are required. Observations and continuum mechanics suggest that the dominant process responsible for rifted continental margin formation is sea-floor spreading of the young ocean ridge, rather than pre-breakup intra-continental rifting. Simple fluid flow models of ocean ridge processes using analytical iso-viscous corner-flow demonstrate that the divergent motion of the upwelling mantle beneath the ocean ridge, when viewed in the reference frame of the young continental margin, shows oceanward flow of the lower continental crust and lithospheric mantle of the young rifted margin giving rise to depth dependent stretching as observed. Single-phase fluid-models have been developed to model the initiation of sea-floor spreading and the thermal, stretching and thinning evolution of the young rifted continental margin. Finite element fluid-flow modelling incorporating the evolving temperature dependent viscosity field on the fluid flow also show depth dependent stretching of the young continental margin. Two-phase flow models of ocean ridges incorporating the transport of both solid matrix and melt fluid (Spiegelman &Reynolds 1999) predict the divergent motion of the asthenosphere and lithosphere matrix, and the focusing of basaltic melt into the narrow axial zone spreading centre at ocean ridges. We are adapting two-phase flow models for application to the initiation of sea-floor spreading and rifted continental margin formation. i

  18. Pressure and temperature evolution of upper mantle under the Rio Grande Rift

    Kil, Y.; Wendlandt, R. F.


    Spinel peridotite xenoliths associated with the Rio Grande Rift axis (Potrillo and Elephant Butte volcanic fields) and the western rift shoulder (Adam’s Diggings) have been investigated to correlate pre-eruptive pressure and temperature conditions with xenolith deformation textures and rift location. Temperatures of xenolith equilibration at the rift shoulder are 100 250°C cooler for a given pressure than the temperatures at the rift axis. Undeformed xenoliths (protogranular texture) are derived from higher temperature and higher pressure conditions than deformed xenoliths (porphyroclastic and equigranular textures) in the rift axis. Exsolution lamellae in pyroxenes, small decreases in Al contents of orthopyroxenes from core to rim, and small differences in porphyroclastic orthopyroxene compositions versus neoblastic orthopyroxene compositions indicate high temperatures followed by cooling and a larger cooling interval in deformed rocks than in undeformed rocks. These features, along with thermal histories based on calcium zoning in olivine rims, indicate that the upper mantle under Adam’s Diggings and Elephant Butte has undergone cooling from an initial high temperature state followed by a late heating event, and the upper mantle under Potrillo has undergone cooling, reheating, and late heating events.

  19. Accumulation of fossil fuels and metallic minerals in active and ancient rift lakes

    Robbins, E.I.


    A study of active and ancient rift systems around the world suggests that accumulations of fossil fuels and metallic minerals are related to the interactions of processes that form rift valleys with those that take place in and around rift lakes. The deposition of the precursors of petroleum, gas, oil shale, coal, phosphate, barite, Cu-Pb-Zn sulfides, and uranium begins with erosion of uplifted areas, and the consequent input of abundant nutrients and solute loads into swamps and tectonic lakes. Hot springs and volcanism add other nutrients and solutes. The resulting high biological productivity creates oxidized/reduced interfaces, and anoxic and H2S-rich bottom waters which preserves metal-bearing organic tissues and horizons. In the depositional phases, the fine-grained lake deposits are in contact with coarse-grained beach, delta, river, talus, and alluvial fan deposits. Earthquake-induced turbidites also are common coarse-grained deposits of rift lakes. Postdepositional processes in rifts include high heat flow and a resulting concentration of the organic and metallic components that were dispersed throughout the lakebeds. Postdepositional faulting brings organic- and metal-rich sourcebeds in contact with coarse-grained host and reservoir rocks. A suite of potentially economic deposits is therefore a characteristic of rift valleys. ?? 1983.

  20. Volcanic Catastrophes

    Eichelberger, J. C.


    The big news from 20th century geophysics may not be plate tectonics but rather the surprise return of catastrophism, following its apparent 19th century defeat to uniformitarianism. Divine miracles and plagues had yielded to the logic of integrating observations of everyday change over time. Yet the brilliant interpretation of the Cretaceous-Tertiary Boundary iridium anomaly introduced an empirically based catastrophism. Undoubtedly, decades of contemplating our own nuclear self-destruction played a role in this. Concepts of nuclear winter, volcanic winter, and meteor impact winter are closely allied. And once the veil of threat of all-out nuclear exchange began to lift, we could begin to imagine slower routes to destruction as "global change". As a way to end our world, fire is a good one. Three-dimensional magma chambers do not have as severe a magnitude limitation as essentially two-dimensional faults. Thus, while we have experienced earthquakes that are as big as they get, we have not experienced volcanic eruptions nearly as great as those preserved in the geologic record. The range extends to events almost three orders of magnitude greater than any eruptions of the 20th century. Such a calamity now would at the very least bring society to a temporary halt globally, and cause death and destruction on a continental scale. At maximum, there is the possibility of hindering photosynthesis and threatening life more generally. It has even been speculated that the relative genetic homogeneity of humankind derives from an evolutionary "bottleneck" from near-extinction in a volcanic cataclysm. This is somewhat more palatable to contemplate than a return to a form of Original Sin, in which we arrived at homogeneity by a sort of "ethnic cleansing". Lacking a written record of truly great eruptions, our sense of human impact must necessarily be aided by archeological and anthropological investigations. For example, there is much to be learned about the influence of

  1. Transition from a localized to wide deformation along Eastern branch of Central East African Rift: Insights from 3D numerical models

    Leroy, S. D.; Koptev, A.; Burov, E. B.; Calais, E.; Gerya, T.


    The Central East African Rift (CEAR) bifurcates in two branches (eastern, magma-rich and western, magma-poor) surrounding strong Tanzanian craton. Intensive magmatism and continental flood basalts are largely present in many of the eastern rift segments, but other segments, first of all the western branch, exhibit very small volcanic activity. The Eastern rift is characterized by southward progression of the onset of volcanism, the extensional features and topographic expression of the rift vary significantly north-southward: in northern Kenya the deformation is very wide (some 150-250 km in E-W direction), to the south the rift narrows to 60-70 km, yet further to the south the deformation widens again in the so-called Tanzania divergence zone. Widening of the Eastern branch within its southern part is associated with the impingement of the southward-propagating rift on the strong Masai block situated to east of the Tanzanian craton. To understand the mechanisms behind this complex deformation distribution, we implemented a 3Dl ultra-high resolution visco-plastic thermo-mechanical numerical model accounting for thermo-rheological structure of the lithosphere and hence captures essential features of the CEAR. The preferred model has a plume seeded slightly to the northeast of the craton center, consistent with seismic tomography, and produces surface strain distribution that is in good agreement with observed variation of deformation zone width along eastern side of Tanzanian craton: localized above bulk of mantle material deflected by cratonic keel narrow high strain zone (Kenia Rift) is replaced by wide distributed deformations within areas situated to north (northern Kenya, Turkana Rift) and to south (Tanzania divergence, Masai block) of it. These results demonstrate significant differences in the impact of the rheological profile on rifting style in case of dominant active rifting compared to dominant passive rifting. Narrow rifting, conventionally attributed to

  2. A model for the structure, composition and evolution of the Kenya rift

    Mechie, J.; Keller, G. R.; Prodehl, C.; Khan, M. A.; Gaciri, S. J.


    .0-8.2 km/s occur. The presence of hot mantle material beneath the Kenya dome since the onset of volcanism here at 15-20 Ma is still compatible with the abrupt change in mantle P-wave velocities as the rift boundaries are crossed. Petrological interpretation of the seismic velocities indicates a few (up to 5) percent basaltic melt in the mantle below the rift except in the two layers with velocities greater than 8.0 km/s under the northern part of the rift where some crystal orientation (anisotropy) is necessary. Below about 45-50 km depth beneath the southern part of the rift the magma could exist as in situ partial melt. The above results, taken together with results from teleseismic studies, petrology and surface geology, indicate anomalously hot mantle material appearing below the present site of the Kenya rift at about 20-30 Ma. The active uprising of this anomalously hot mantle material since this time has given rise to widespread volcanism along the whole length of the rift and has modified the crust beneath the rift by mafic igneous underplating and intrusion, especially into the basal crustal layer. Accompanying the uprise of the anomalously hot mantle material minor crustal extension (5-10 km) has occurred beneath the Kenya dome in the southern part of the rift where crustal thickness is large (35 km). Under the Turkana region in the northern part of the rift, a greater amount of extension (35-40 km) has taken place and the crustal thickness is small (20 km), although the depth to the onset of melting under the northern part of the rift is, if anything, greater than under the southern part of the rift.

  3. Lithological Influences on Occurrence of High-Fluoride Waters in The Central Kenya Rift

    Olaka, L. A.; Musolff, A.; Mulch, A.; Olago, D.; Odada, E. O.


    Within the East African rift, groundwater recharge results from the complex interplay of geology, land cover, geomorphology, climate and on going volcano-tectonic processes across a broad range of spatial and temporal scales. The interrelationships between these factors create complex patterns of water availability, reliability and quality. The hydrochemical evolution of the waters is further complex due to the different climatic regimes and geothermal processes going on in this area. High fluoridic waters within the rift have been reported by few studies, while dental fluorosis is high among the inhabitants of the rift. The natural sources of fluoride in waters can be from weathering of fluorine bearing minerals in rocks, volcanic or fumarolic activities. Fluoride concentration in water depends on a number of factors including pH, temperature, time of water-rock formation contact and geochemical processes. Knowledge of the sources and dispersion of fluoride in both surface and groundwaters within the central Kenya rift and seasonal variations between wet and dry seasons is still poor. The Central Kenya rift is marked by active tectonics, volcanic activity and fumarolic activity, the rocks are majorly volcanics: rhyolites, tuffs, basalts, phonolites, ashes and agglomerates some are highly fractured. Major NW-SE faults bound the rift escarpment while the rift floor is marked by N-S striking faults We combine petrographic, hydrochemistry and structural information to determine the sources and enrichment pathways of high fluoridic waters within the Naivasha catchment. A total of 120 water samples for both the dry season (January-February2012) and after wet season (June-July 2013) from springs, rivers, lakes, hand dug wells, fumaroles and boreholes within the Naivasha catchment are collected and analysed for fluoride, physicochemical parameters and stable isotopes (δ2 H, δ18 O) in order to determine the origin and evolution of the waters. Additionally, 30 soil and

  4. Rifted Continental Margins: The Case for Depth-Dependent Extension

    Huismans, Ritske S.; Beaumont, Christopher


    Even though many basic properties of non-volcanic rifted margins are predicted by uniform extension of the lithosphere, uniform extension fails to explain other important characteristics. Particularly significant discrepancies are observed at: 1) the Iberia-Newfoundland conjugate margins (Type I), where large tracts of continental mantle lithosphere are exposed at the seafloor, and at; 2) ultra-wide central South Atlantic margins (Type II) where continental crust spans wide regions below which it appears that lower crust and mantle lithosphere were removed. Neither corresponds to uniform extension in which crust and mantle thin by the same factor. Instead, either the crust or mantle lithosphere has been preferentially removed during extension. We show that the Type I and II styles are respectively reproduced by dynamical numerical lithospheric stretching models (Models I-A/C and II-A/C) that undergo depth-dependent extension. In this notation A and C imply underplating of the rift zone during rifting by asthenosphere and lower cratonic lithosphere, respectively. We also present results for models with a weak upper crust and strong lower crust, Models III-A/C, to show that lower crust can also be removed from beneath the rift zone by horizontal advection with the mantle lithosphere. From the model results we infer that these Types I, II, and III margin styles are controlled by the strength of the mid/lower crust, which determines the amount of decoupling between upper and lower lithosphere during extension and the excision of crust or mantle. We also predict the styles of sedimentary basins that form on these margins as a test of the concepts presented

  5. Simulated tritium concentrations in river waters of the western Lake Taupo catchment, New Zealand with MODPATH particle tracking

    M. A. Gusyev


    Full Text Available We simulated in a previous study tritium concentrations in the river waters of the western Lake Taupo catchment (WLTC using MODFLOW/MT3DMS model (Gusyev et al., 2013. The model was calibrated to match simulated tritium to measured tritium in river waters at baseflows of the Waihaha, Whanganui, Whareroa, Kuratau and Omori river catchments of the WLTC. Following from this work we now utilized the same MODFLOW model for the WLTC to calculate the pathways of groundwater particles (and their corresponding tritium concentrations using steady-state particle tracking with MODPATH. In order to simulate baseflow tritium concentrations with MODPATH, transit time distributions (TTDs such as cumulative frequency distribution (CFD and probability density function (PDF are generated with particle tracking for the river networks of the five WLTC catchment outflows. Then, PDFs are used in the convolution integral with tritium concentration time series obtained in the precipitation. The resulting MODPATH tritium concentrations yield a very good match to measured tritium concentrations and are similar to the MT3DMS simulated tritium concentrations, with the greatest variation occurring around the bomb peak. MODPATH and MT3DMS also yield similar Mean Transit Times (MTT of groundwater contribution to river baseflows, but the actual shape of the TTDs is strikingly different. While both distributions provide valuable information, the methodologies used to derive the TTDs are fundamentally different and hence must be interpreted differently. With the current models setting, only the methodology used with MODPATH provides the true TTD for use with the convolution integral.

  6. Diachronism in the late Neoproterozoic-Cambrian arc-rift transition of North Gondwana: A comparison of Morocco and the Iberian Ossa-Morena Zone

    Álvaro, J. Javier; Bellido, Félix; Gasquet, Dominique; Pereira, M. Francisco; Quesada, Cecilio; Sánchez-García, Teresa


    In the northwestern border of the West African craton (North Gondwana), a transition from late Neoproterozoic subduction/collision to Cambrian rift processes was recorded in the Anti-Atlas (Morocco) and in the Ossa-Morena Zone (Iberia). Cambrian rifting affected both Pan-African and Cadomian basements in a stepwise and diachronous way. Subsequently, both areas evolved into a syn-rift margin episodically punctuated by uplift and tilting that precluded Furongian sedimentation. A comparison of sedimentary, volcanic and geodynamic evolution is made in the late Neoproterozoic (Pan-African and Cadomian) belts and Cambrian rifts trying to solve the apparent diachronous (SW-NE-trending) propagation of an early Palaeozoic rifting regime that finally led to the opening of the Rheic Ocean.

  7. Deformation in a hyperslow oceanic rift: Insights from the tectonics of the São Miguel Island (Terceira Rift, Azores)

    Sibrant, A. L. R.; Marques, F. O.; Hildenbrand, A.; Boulesteix, T.; Costa, A. C. G.; Catalão, J.


    The evolution of hyperslow oceanic rifts, like the Terceira Rift (TR) in the Azores, is still poorly understood. Here we examine the distribution of strain and magmatism in the portion of the TR making up the Nubia-Eurasia plate boundary. We use São Miguel Island because it stretches most of the TR width, which allows to investigate the TR's architecture and shedding light on TR's age and mode of deformation. From topography and structural analysis, and new measurements of 380 faults and dikes, we show that (1) São Miguel has two main structural directions, N150 and N110, mostly concentrated in the eastern part of the island as an onshore continuation of the faults observed offshore in the NE (N110 faults) and SW (N140) TR walls; (2) a new N50-N80 fault system is identified in São Miguel; (3) fault and dike geometries indicate that eastern São Miguel comprises the TR's northern boundary, and the lack of major faults in central and western São Miguel indicates that rifting is mostly concentrated at master faults bounding the TR. Based on TR's geometry, structural observations and plate kinematics, we estimate that the TR initiated between 1.4 and 2.7 Ma ago and that there is no appreciable seafloor spreading associated with rifting. Based on plate kinematics, on the new structural data, and on São Miguel's structural and volcanic trends, we propose that the eastern two thirds of São Miguel lie along a main TR-related transform fault striking N70-N80, which connects two widely separated N130-N150 TR-trending segments.

  8. Geochemical signals of progressive continental rupture in the Main Ethiopian Rift

    Furman, T.; Bryce, J.; Yirgu, G.; Ayalew, D.; Cooper, L.


    Mafic volcanics of the Main Ethiopian Rift record the development of magmatic rift segments during continental extension. The Ethiopian Rift is one arm of a triple junction that formed above a Paleogene mantle plume, concurrent with eruption of flood basalts ca. 30 Ma across northern Ethiopian and Yemen. The geochemistry of Ethiopian Rift lavas thus provides insight into processes associated with the shift from mechanical (lithospheric) to magmatic (asthenospheric) segmentation in the transitional phase of continental rifting. Quaternary basalts from five volcanic centers representing three magmatic segments display along-axis geochemical variations that likely reflect the degree of rifting and magma supply, which increase abruptly with proximity to the highly-extended Afar region. To first order, the geochemical data indicate a decreasing degree of shallow-level fractionation and greater involvement of depleted or plume-like mantle source materials in basalts sampled closer to the Afar. These spatially controlled geochemical signatures observed in contemporaneous basalts are similar to temporal variations documented in southern Ethiopia, where Quaternary lavas indicate a greater degree of crustal extension than those erupted at the onset of plume activity. Primitive Ethiopian Rift basalts have geochemical signatures (e.g., Ce/Pb, La/Nb, Ba/Nb, Ba/Rb, U/Th) that overlap ocean island basalt compositions, suggesting involvement of sub-lithospheric source materials. The estimated depth of melting (65-75 km) is shallower than values obtained for young primitive mafic lavas from the Western Rift and southern Kenya as well as Oligocene Ethiopian flood basalts from the onset of plume-driven activity. Basalts from the Turkana region (N. Kenya) and Erta 'Ale (Danakil depression) reflect melting at shallower levels, corresponding to the greater degree of crustal extension in these provinces. Preliminary Sr and Nd isotopic data trend towards primitive earth values, consistent


    V. V. Chashchin; F. P. Mitrofanov


    The article provides data on the structure of the Paleoproterozoic intercontinental Imandra-Varzuga rifting structure (IVS) and compositions of intrusive formations typical of the early stage of the IVS development and associated mineral resources. IVS is located in the central part of the Kola region. Its length is about 350 km, and its width varies from 10 km at the flanks to 50 km in the central part. IVS contains an association of the sedimentary-volcanic, intrusive and dyke complexes. It...

  10. Lake sediments provide the first eruptive history for Corbetti, a high-risk Main Ethiopian Rift volcano

    Martin-Jones, Catherine M.; Lane, Christine S.; Pearce, Nicholas J. G.; Smith, Victoria C.; Lamb, Henry F.; Schaebitz, Frank; Viehberg, Finn; Brown, Maxwell C.; Frank, Ute; Asrat, Asfawossen


    A recent World Bank report found that 49 of Ethiopia's 65 known Holocene volcanoes pose a high-risk to the surrounding population. One of these volcanoes, Corbetti, located in the densely populated Main Ethiopian Rift (MER), has only one documented Holocene eruption. Any risk assessment for Corbetti is therefore highly uncertain. Reliable hazard forecasting is dependent on the completeness of volcanic records. In the case of Ethiopian Rift volcanoes complete records are hindered by frequently poorly exposed, buried and inaccessible proximal outcrops. Lake sediments can yield comprehensive, stratigraphically-resolved dossiers of past volcanism. Here we use volcanic ash (tephra) layers preserved in sediments from three MER lakes to provide the first record of Holocene volcanism for Corbetti. It shows that Corbetti has erupted explosively throughout the Holocene at an average return period of 800 years. Based on the thickness and dispersal of the tephras, at least six eruptions were of a large magnitude, and there were four eruptions in the past 2000 years. Future explosive eruptions are likely and these could have significant societal impacts, they could blanket nearby Awassa and Shashamene, home to 260,000 people, with pumice deposits. Our data indicate that the threat posed by Corbetti has been significantly underestimated. These data can be used to refine regional volcano monitoring and develop evacuation plans. This lake sediment-tephrostratigraphic approach shows significant potential for application throughout the East African Rift system, and is essential to understanding volcanic hazards in this rapidly developing region.

  11. Cenozoic rift formation in the northern Caribbean

    Mann, P.; Burke, K.


    Rifts form in many different tectonic environments where the lithosphere is put into extension. An outline is provided of the distribution, orientation, and relative ages of 16 Cenozoic rifts along the northern edge of the Caribbean plate and it is suggested that these structures formed successively by localized extension as the Caribbean plate moved eastward past a continental promontory of North America. Evidence leading to this conclusion includes (1) recognition that the rifts become progressively younger westward; (2) a two-phase subsidence history in a rift exposed by upthrusting in Jamaica; (3) the absence of rifts east of Jamaica; and (4) the observation that removal of 1400 km of strike-slip displacement on the Cayman Trough fault system places the Paleogene rifts of Jamaica in an active area of extension south of Yucatan where the rifts of Honduras and Guatemala are forming today.

  12. How Volcanism Controls Climate Change

    Ward, P. L.


    km decrease in tropopause height. Changes in the rates and types of volcanism have been the primary cause of climate change throughout geologic time. Large explosive volcanoes erupting as frequently as once per decade increment the world into ice ages. Extensive, effusive basaltic volcanism warms the world out of ice ages. Twelve of the 13 dated basaltic table mountains in Iceland experienced their final eruptive phase during the last deglaciation when deposits of sulfate and volcanic ash fell over Greenland at their highest rates. Massive flood basalts are typically accompanied by extreme warming, ozone depletion, and major mass extinctions. The Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum occurred when subaerial extrusion of basalts related to the opening of the Greenland-Norwegian Sea suddenly increased to rates greater than 3000 cubic km per km of rift per million years. Dansgaard-Oeschger sudden warming events are contemporaneous with increased volcanism especially in Iceland and last longer when that volcanism lasts longer. Sudden influxes of fresh water often observed in the North Atlantic during these events are most likely caused by extensive sub-glacial volcanism. The Medieval Warm Period, Little Ice Age, major droughts, and many sudden changes in human civilization began with substantial increases in volcanism. Extensive submarine volcanism does not affect climate directly but is linked with increases in ocean acidity and anoxic events.

  13. Hf isotope evidence for variable slab input and crustal addition in basalts and andesites of the Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand

    Waight, Tod Earle; Troll, Valentin R.; Gamble, J.A.


    variations likely represent variability in primary magma compositions as a result of different degrees of sediment addition at the slab-wedge interface. Coupled variations in isotopic composition, LILE/HFSE ratios (e.g. Rb/Zr and Ba/La) and SiO2 also clearly indicate that shallower level crustal interactions......Crustal contamination complicates the identification of primary mantle-derived magma compositions in Continental arcs. However,when crustal processes and components arewell characterised, it is possible to extrapolate through continental arc magma compositional arrays towards the Hf and Nd isotope...... compositions of uncontaminated primary magmas. This is because of the similar behaviour of Hf and Nd during fractional crystallisation and mantle melting, and the subsequent limited variation in Hf/Nd in mantle-derived magmas and in many crustal lithologies, resulting in linear contamination trends for Hf...

  14. Basic and ultrabasic volcanic rocks from the Argyll Group (Dalradian) of NE Scotland


    The Dalradian Supergroup of the Scottish Highlands is a largely metasedimentary succession of Neoproterozoic to Early Cambrian age, metamorphosed during the Caledonian Orogeny. The rocks were deposited on the Laurentian margin during and following the break-up of Rodinia. This rift setting is evidenced, in the upper half of the succession, by the presence of several volcanic sequences. A significant development of these volcanic rocks occurs in the NE Grampian Highlands. There, the Blackwater...

  15. Plate kinematics of the Afro-Arabian Rift System with emphasis on the Afar Depression, Ethiopia

    Bottenberg, Helen Carrie

    This work utilizes the Four-Dimensional Plates (4DPlates) software, and Differential Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (DInSAR) to examine plate-scale, regional-scale and local-scale kinematics of the Afro-Arabian Rift System with emphasis on the Afar Depression in Ethiopia. First, the 4DPlates is used to restore the Red Sea, the Gulf of Aden, the Afar Depression and the Main Ethiopian Rift to development of a new model that adopts two poles of rotation for Arabia. Second, the 4DPlates is used to model regional-scale and local-scale kinematics within the Afar Depression. Most plate reconstruction models of the Afro-Arabian Rift System relies on considering the Afar Depression as a typical rift-rift-rift triple junction where the Arabian, Somali and Nubian (African) plates are separating by the Red Sea, the Gulf of Aden and the Main Ethiopian Rift suggesting the presence of "sharp and rigid" plate boundaries. However, at the regional-scale the Afar kinematics are more complex due to stepping of the Red Sea propagator and the Gulf of Aden propagator onto Afar as well as the presence of the Danakil, Ali Sabieh and East Central Block "micro-plates". This study incorporates the motion of these micro-plates into the regional-scale model and defined the plate boundary between the Arabian and the African plates within Afar as likely a diffused zone of extensional strain within the East Central Block. Third, DInSAR technology is used to create ascending and descending differential interferograms from the Envisat Advanced Synthetic Aperture Radar (ASAR) C-Band data for the East Central Block to image active crustal deformation related to extensional tectonics and volcanism. Results of the DInSAR study indicate no strong strain localization but rather a diffused pattern of deformation across the entire East Central Block.

  16. Deep structure of the northern Rio Grande rift beneath the San Luis basin (Colorado) from a seismic reflection survey: implications for rift evolution

    Tandon, Kush; Brown, Larry; Hearn, Thomas


    A seismic reflection survey by Chevron across the San Luis basin (northern Rio Grande rift) and San Juan volcanic field of southern Colorado is reprocessed with extended correlation to search for basement structure. The trace of the main bounding fault of the basin, a high-angle normal fault against the Sangre de Cristo Range, can be correlated to a wide zone of dipping reflection fabric and soles out at lower crustal depths (26-28 km). The deeper reflection fabric represent either broad extensional strain or pre-existing structure, such as a Laramide thrust system. The Sangre de Cristo bounding fault in San Luis basin does not sole out at mid-crustal depths but continues into the lower crust with a shallower dip. The basin architecture in the northern Rio Grande rift (San Luis basin) provides little if any evidence that the Sangre de Cristo bounding fault should flatten in a shallow listric fashion. This fault geometry is quite similar to the high-angle bounding fault in the Espanola basin but contrasts with less deeply-rooted faults in the Albuquerque basin in the central Rio Grande rift. Deeper soling out of the Sangre de Cristo bounding fault could be due to less extension in the northern Rio Grande rift and/or greater strength of the lithosphere compared to the central Rio Grande rift. Unequivocal Moho reflections beneath the San Luis basin cannot be identified, probably due to limited signal penetration or a gradational nature of the Moho. The majority of rift-related movement observed on the Sangre de Cristo bounding fault is post-Eocene. Either the western margin of the basin is marked by a tight monocline or a low-angle normal fault.

  17. Upper mantle P-wave velocity structure beneath northern Lake Malawi and the Rungwe Volcanic Province, East Africa

    Grijalva, A. N.; Kachingwe, M.; Nyblade, A.; Shillington, D. J.; Gaherty, J. B.; Ebinger, C. J.; Accardo, N. J.; O'Donnell, J. P.; Mbogoni, G. J.; Mulibo, G. D.; Ferdinand, R.; Chindandali, P. R. N.; Mphepo, F.


    A recent deployment of 55 broadband seismic stations around the northern Lake Malawi rift as part of the SEGMeNT project have provided a new dataset for imaging crustal and upper mantle structure beneath the Rungwe volcanic center and northern most segment of the Lake Malawi Rift. The goal of our study is to characterize the upper mantle velocity structure and determine to what extent the rifting has been influenced by magmatism. P relative arrival time residuals have been obtained for 115 teleseismic events with magnitudes > 5 in the 30 - 90 degree distance range. They are being tomographically inverted, together with travel time residuals from previous deployments for a 3-D velocity model of the upper mantle. Preliminary results indicate a low wave speed anomaly in the uppermost mantle beneath the Rungwe volcanics. Future results will determine if this anomaly exists under the northern Lake Malawi rift.

  18. Probing the age and temperature of rifting in Afar

    Armitage, John; Goes, Saskia; Ferguson, David; Hammond, James; Calais, Eric


    Rifting along the southern part of the Red Sea margin in NE Africa (leading to formation of Afar) has been closely associated with magmatic activity since the initiation of extension at around ~ 25Ma. Numerous active volcanoes are currently found along rift zones here and magma intrusion into the crust has potentially accommodated significant amounts of extension. This extensive present-day volcanism has been linked to elevated mantle temperature, perhaps due to a thermal plume, or as a consequence of passive flow in the mantle beneath the extending lithosphere. Geochemical evidence for basaltic lavas erupted in Afar have been used to suggest that mantle temperatures are in the range 1370 to 1490°C, and that the region is currently experiencing late stage rifting. Analysis of changes in shear wave seismic velocities and relative travel time tomography suggests mantle temperatures are within a similar range, yet the region has greater similarities to a young spreading centre. The range in potential temperature estimates is however very large, with different implications for the volcanic history of the region and hence timing of break-up. Rather than focusing a single observable, we use a relatively straight forward model of extension and decompression melting to predict the seismic-velocity and attenuation structure of the asthenosphere and lithosphere, synthetic receiver functions as a result of this seismic structure, crustal thickness as a result of decompression and finally the melt composition. From this combined study we find that melt composition and seismic structure are dependent on both temperature and time. If mantle potential temperature is 1350°C then both the seismic structure and melt composition can be matched if the duration of extension is more than 30 Myr. However this is longer than the estimated duration of extension from plate reconstructions, and given the low rate of extension in Afar, this cold model only generates up to 5 km of igneous

  19. Is the Proterozoic Ladoga Rift (SE Baltic Shield) a rift?

    Artemieva, Irina; Shulgin, Alexey


    The southern part of the Baltic Shield hosts a series of mafic dykes and sills of Mesoproterozoic ages, including a ca. 1.53-1.46 Ga sheet-like gabbro-dolerite sills and the Salmi plateau-basalts from the Lake Ladoga region. Based on chiefly geochemical data, the region is conventionally interpre......The southern part of the Baltic Shield hosts a series of mafic dykes and sills of Mesoproterozoic ages, including a ca. 1.53-1.46 Ga sheet-like gabbro-dolerite sills and the Salmi plateau-basalts from the Lake Ladoga region. Based on chiefly geochemical data, the region is conventionally...... interpreted as an intracratonic Ladoga rift (graben). We question the validity of this geodynamic interpretation by analyzing regional geophysical data (crustal structure, heat flow, Bouguer gravity anomalies, magnetic anomalies, and mantle Vs velocities). We provide a complete list of tectonic, magmatic......, and geophysical characteristics typical of continental rifts in general and demonstrate that, except for magmatic and, perhaps, some gravity signature, the Lake Ladoga region lacks any other rift features. We also compare the geophysical data from the Lake Ladoga region with similar in age Midcontinent and Valday...

  20. Review of Paleomagnetic Age Constraints of Mid-Continent Rift Strata, Upper Midwestern United States

    Houlihan, E.; Runkel, A.; Feinberg, J. M.; Cowan, C. A.; Titus, S.


    The Keweenawan Supergroup consists of 1.1 Ga volcanic units and overlying km-thick sedimentary succession that are associated with the Midcontinent Rift (MR), one of the most prominent geologic features in the Precambrian basement rocks of the North American craton (Morey and Green, 1982; Ojakangas et al., 2001; Ojakangas and Dickas, 2002). Recent studies targeting the sedimentary sequences of the rift highlight a longstanding problem that limits the impact of their results. The studies are based on data collected from a sedimentary package of the Keweenawan Supergroup that is very poorly constrained in age. Sedimentary strata low in the succession are constrained by dated intercalated volcanics, or mineralization ages, that indicate syn-rift filling commenced at about 1087 Ma as volcanism was waning (Davis and Paces, 1990). However, km-thick younger strata within the rift are constrained in maximum age only by virtue of overlying Cambrian fossil-bearing units (Morey and Ojakangas, 1982). Thus, the bulk of the MR sedimentary succession has a range in possible age of about 500 Ma, and potentially is in places as young as Middle Cambrian. Paleomagnetic methods may hold the most promise to date the MR sedimentary succession. Widespread paleomagnetic studies have been conducted on the igneous rocks of the rift, and several previous studies have used paleomagnetic techniques to date the sedimentary units as well (Dubois, 1962; Henry et al., 1976; Elmore and Van der Voo, 1978; Roy and Robertson, 1978; Halls and Palmer, 1981; Palmer et al., 1981; Watts, 1981; McCabe and Van der Voo, 1982; Diehl and Haig, 1994; Kulakov et al., 2013 and others). These authors generally considered the paleomagnetic signatures to be consistent with a Mesoproterozoic age for both the igneous and sedimentary rocks of the rift. Recently, however, authors have suggested that the uppermost sedimentary units are much younger in age, based on a combination of zircon and paleomagnetic analysis

  1. Geologic evolution of the Jemez Mountains and their potential for future volcanic activity

    Burton, B.W.


    Geophysical and geochemical data and the geologic history of the Rio Grande rift and the vicinity of the Jemez Mountains are summarized to determine the probability of future volcanic activity in the Los Alamos, New Mexico area. The apparent cyclic nature of volcanism in the Jemez Mountains may be related to intermittent thermal inputs into the volcanic system beneath the region. The Jemez lineament, an alignment of late Cenozoic volcanic centers that crosses the rift near Los Alamos, has played an important role in the volcanic evolution of the Jemez Mountains. Geophysical data suggest that there is no active shallow magma body beneath the Valles caldera, though magma probably exists at about 15 km beneath this portion of the rift. The rate of volcanism in the Jemez Mountains during the last 10 million years has been 5 x 10/sup -9//km/sup 2//y. Lava or ash flows overriding Laboratory radioactive waste disposal sites would have little potential to release radionuclides to the environment. The probability of a new volcano intruding close enough to a radioactive waste disposal site to effect radionuclide release is 2 x 10/sup -7//y.

  2. Mechanical strength of extended continental lithosphere: Constraints from the Western Rift System, East Africa

    Ebinger, Cynthia J.; Karner, Garry D.; Weissel, Jeffrey K.


    Although regional isostasy generally is associated with continental lithospheric compression and foreland basin formation, local isostatic compensation commonly is assumed in models of extensional basin formation. The assumption of negligible lithospheric strength during rifting often is justified on the basis of: (1) high heat flow and temperatures produced by elevating the lithosphere - asthenosphere boundary and (2) fracturing of the crust and lithosphere by normal faults. By modeling the development of rift basins within the Western rift system of East Africa and their associated free air gravity anomalies, we assess the role of basin-producing normal faults in modifying the flexural strength of extended lithosphere. Heat flow and seismicity data from the East African plateau region indicate that the Western rift system located on the western side of the plateau developed in old, cold continental lithosphere. These relatively narrow (40-70 km wide), but deep, basins are bounded along one side by high-angle border faults that penetrate to lower crustal levels, as indicated by seismicity data. Along the length of the Western rift system, depth to pre-rift basement and rift flank topography vary between basins from 1 to 8 km and from 1 to 2 km respectively, with deeper basins generally correlating with higher flanks. Comparison of model predictions with topography and free air gravity profiles reveals that the basin depth and the flank height in the majority of the Western rift basins studied can be explained simply by small heaves (3-10 km) across the border fault and with significant flexural strength of the lithosphere maintained during extension. Where both observed basin depth and flank height could not be reproduced, basins were located adjacent to eruptive volcanic centers active in Miocene-Recent times. In these areas, basin depth, rift flank elevation, and free air gravity anomaly may be modified by magmatic underplating of the crust. Estimates of

  3. The Role of Rift Obliquity in Formation of the Gulf of California

    Bennett, Scott Edmund Kelsey

    The Gulf of California illustrates how highly oblique rift geometries, where transform faults are kinematically linked to large-offset normal faults in adjacent pull-apart basins, enhance the ability of continental lithosphere to rupture and, ultimately, hasten the formation of new oceanic basins. The Gulf of California rift has accommodated oblique divergence of the Pacific and North America tectonic plates in northwestern Mexico since Miocene time. Due to its infancy, the rifted margins of the Gulf of California preserve a rare onshore record of early continental break-up processes from which to investigate the role of rift obliquity in strain localization. Using new high-precision paleomagnetic vectors from tectonically stable sites in north-central Baja California, I compile a paleomagnetic transect of Miocene ignimbrites across northern Baja California and Sonora that reveals the timing and distribution of dextral shear associated with inception of this oblique rift. I integrate detailed geologic mapping, basin analysis, and geochronology of pre-rift and syn-rift volcanic units to determine the timing of fault activity on Isla Tiburon, a proximal onshore exposure of the rifted North America margin, adjacent to the axis of the Gulf of California. The onset of strike-slip faulting on Isla Tiburon, ca. 8 - 7 Ma, was synchronous with the onset of transform faulting along a significant length of the nascent plate boundary within the rift. This tectonic transition coincides with a clockwise azimuthal shift in Pacific-North America relative motion that increased rift obliquity. I constrain the earliest marine conditions on southwest Isla Tiburon to ca. 6.4 - 6.0 Ma, coincident with a regional latest Miocene marine incursion in the northern proto-Gulf of California. This event likely flooded a narrow, incipient topographic depression along a ˜650 km-long portion of the latest Miocene plate boundary and corresponds in time and space with formation of a newly

  4. Rifting processes in the centre of Siberia revealed by BEST (Baikal Explosion Seismic Transects)

    Nielsen, C. A.; Thybo, H.; Jensen, M. M.; Ross, A.; Suvorov, V. D.; Emanov, A.; Seleznev, V.; Tatkov, G.; Perchuc, E.; Gazcynski, E.


    The Baikal Rift Zone is located in Siberia at the centre of the world's largest continental area. It offers a unique opportunity for studying the processes of intra-cratonic rifting. The BEST project (Baikal Explosion Seismic Transects) comprises two deep seismic profiles at the southern end of Lake Baikal. The field project was carried out in October 2002 after a pilot project in September 2001. The aim of the project is to determine the crustal and upper mantle seismic velocity structure. The two profiles are: (1) a 360 km long, NS-trending profile across the rift zone from the Mongolian border to Cheremhovo, and (2) a 360 km long EW-trending profile along-strike of the rift zone at the northern shore of the lake into the Tunka depression to the Mongolian border. 180 Texan one-component seismographs were deployed along each profile. The primary seismic sources were 13 explosions in boreholes, each with a 500 to 3000 kg charge. Supplementary sources were airgun shots in the lake (one 100 l airgun on profile 1, one 30 l airgun on profile 2) and the supervibrator located at Babushkin near the cross point between the two profiles at the shore of the lake. We present the preliminary modelling results of the BEST data from tomographic inversion of first arrival times and 2D ray tracing modelling of the seismic velocity structure of the crust and uppermost mantle. The models show: (1) A pronounced sedimentary graben structure to depths of at least 10 km; (2) No significant crustal thinning below the rift zone; (3) Strong seismic reflectivity underneath the rift zone, indicative of pronounced magmatic intrusion into the lower crust, despite the non-volcanic appearance of much of the rift zone; (4) No sign of significant reduction of the seismic Pn wave velocity; and (5) No clear indication of continuation of the cratonic crust underneath the rift zone in disagreement with a recently published model of the rifting process. Instead the model is in agreement with a model in

  5. Volcanic hazard management in dispersed volcanism areas

    Marrero, Jose Manuel; Garcia, Alicia; Ortiz, Ramon


    Traditional volcanic hazard methodologies were developed mainly to deal with the big stratovolcanoes. In such type of volcanoes, the hazard map is an important tool for decision-makers not only during a volcanic crisis but also for territorial planning. According to the past and recent eruptions of a volcano, all possible volcanic hazards are modelled and included in the hazard map. Combining the hazard map with the Event Tree the impact area can be zoned and defining the likely eruptive scenarios that will be used during a real volcanic crisis. But in areas of disperse volcanism is very complex to apply the same volcanic hazard methodologies. The event tree do not take into account unknown vents, because the spatial concepts included in it are only related with the distance reached by volcanic hazards. The volcanic hazard simulation is also difficult because the vent scatter modifies the results. The volcanic susceptibility try to solve this problem, calculating the most likely areas to have an eruption, but the differences between low and large values obtained are often very small. In these conditions the traditional hazard map effectiveness could be questioned, making necessary a change in the concept of hazard map. Instead to delimit the potential impact areas, the hazard map should show the expected behaviour of the volcanic activity and how the differences in the landscape and internal geo-structures could condition such behaviour. This approach has been carried out in La Palma (Canary Islands), combining the concept of long-term hazard map with the short-term volcanic scenario to show the expected volcanic activity behaviour. The objective is the decision-makers understand how a volcanic crisis could be and what kind of mitigation measurement and strategy could be used.

  6. Reviewing Landmark Nitrogen Cap and Trade Legislation in New Zealand's Taupo Catchment: What Have We Learned after 5+ Years?

    Baisden, W. T.; Hamilton, D. P.


    In 2007, the first cap and trade legislation for a catchment nitrogen (N) budget was enacted to protect water quality in New Zealand's iconic Lake Taupo. The clarity of the 616 km² N-limited oligotrophic lake was declining due to human-induced increases in N losses from the 3,487 km² catchment. Focus was placed on reversing increases in N inputs from agriculture, and to a lesser degree sewerage sources. The legislation imposed a cap equal to 20% reduction in the N inputs to the lake, and enabled trading. The landmark legislation could have failed during appeal. Sources of disagreement included the N budgeting model and grand-parenting method that benchmarked the N leaching of individual farms. The N leaching rates for key land uses were also a major battleground, with strong effects on the viability of trading and relative value of enterprises. Sufficient science was applied to resolve the substantive issues in the appeal by 2008. Crucially, the decision recognized that N inputs to the "N cascade" mattered more than leaching evidence including land-use legacies. Other catchment cap-and-trade schemes followed. Rotorua Lakes had already capped inputs and established a ~33% N input reduction target after acceptance of a trading scheme compatible with groundwater lag times. In the Upper Manawatu catchment, a cap-and-trade scheme now governs river N loads in a more typical farming region, with an innovative allocation scheme based on the natural capital of soils. Collectively, these schemes have succeeded in imposing a cap, and signaling the intention of reductions over time. I conclude with common themes in the successes, and examine the role of science in the success and ongoing implementation. Central to success has been the role of science in framing N budgets at farm and catchment scales. Long-term data has been invaluable, despite the need to correct biases. Cap-and-trade policies alter future science needs toward reducing uncertainty in overall budgets, the

  7. Combining hydrologic and groundwater modelling to characterize a regional aquifer system within a rift setting (Gidabo River Basin, Main Ethiopian Rift)

    Birk, Steffen; Mechal, Abraham; Wagner, Thomas; Dietzel, Martin; Leis, Albrecht; Winkler, Gerfried; Mogessie, Aberra


    The development of groundwater resources within the Ethiopian Rift is complicated by the strong physiographic contrasts between the rift floor and the highland and by the manifold hydrogeological setting composed of volcanic rocks of different type and age that are intersected by numerous faults. Hydrogeochemical and isotope data from various regions within the Ethiopian Rift suggest that the aquifers within the semi-arid rift floor receive a significant contribution of groundwater flow from the humid highland. For example, the major ion composition of groundwater samples from Gidabo River Basin (3302 km²) in the southern part of the Main Ethiopian Rift reveals a mixing trend from the highland toward the rift floor; moreover, the stable isotopes of water, deuterium and O-18, of the rift-floor samples indicate a component recharged in the highland. This work aims to assess if the hydrological and hydrogeological data available for Gidabo River Basin is consistent with these findings and to characterize the regional aquifer system within the rift setting. For this purpose, a two-step approach is employed: First, the semi-distributed hydrological model SWAT is used to obtain an estimate of the spatial and temporal distribution of groundwater recharge within the watershed; second, the numerical groundwater flow model MODFLOW is employed to infer aquifer properties and groundwater flow components. The hydrological model was calibrated and validated using discharge data from three stream gauging stations within the watershed (Mechal et al., Journal of Hydrology: Regional Studies, 2015, doi:10.1016/j.ejrh.2015.09.001). The resulting recharge distribution exhibits a strong decrease from the highland, where the mean annual recharge amounts to several hundred millimetres, to the rift floor, where annual recharge largely is around 100 mm and below. Using this recharge distribution as input, a two-dimensional steady-state groundwater flow model was calibrated to hydraulic

  8. Edaphic and Topographic Constraints on Exploitation of the Central Kenya Rift by Large Mammals and Early Hominins


    Our aim in this paper is to create a palaeoenvironmental and spatio-temporal framework for interpreting\\ud human land use and exploitation of large mammals in the Central Kenya Rift over the past 2 million years,\\ud with particular reference to the Nakuru-Elmenteita-Naivasha basin and its adjacent rift flanks on the\\ud Kinangop Plateau and Mau escarpment. We pay particular attention to the tectonic and volcanic history\\ud of the region, and to the system of lakes that have undergone periodic ...

  9. Volcanic hazard assessment in monogenetic volcanic fields

    Bartolini, Stefania


    [eng] One of the most important tasks of modern volcanology, which represents a significant socio-economic implication, is to conduct hazard assessment in active volcanic systems. These volcanological studies are aimed at hazard that allows to constructing hazard maps and simulating different eruptive scenarios, and are mainly addressed to contribute to territorial planning, definition of emergency plans or managing volcanic crisis. The impact of a natural event, as a volcanic eruption, can s...

  10. The development of the East African Rift system in north-central Kenya

    Hackman, B. D.; Charsley, T. J.; Key, R. M.; Wilkinson, A. F.


    Between 1980 and 1986 geological surveying to produce maps on a scale of 1:250,000 was completed over an area of over 100,000 km 2 in north-central Kenya, bounded by the Equator, the Ethiopian border and longitudes 36° and 38 °E. The Gregory Rift, much of which has the structure of an asymmetric half-graben, is the most prominent component of the Cenozoic multiple rift system which extends up to 200 km to the east and for about 100 km to the west, forming the Kenya dome. On the eastern shoulder and fringes two en echelon arrays of late Tertiary to Quaternary multicentre shields can be recognized: to the south is the Aberdares-Mount Kenya-Nyambeni Range chain and, to the north the clusters of Mount Kulal, Asie, Huri Hills and Marsabit, with plateau lavas and fissure vents south of Marsabit in the Laisamis area. The Gregory Rift terminates at the southern end of Lake Turkana. Further north the rift system splays: the arcuate Kinu Sogo fault zone forms an offset link with the central Ethiopian Rift system. In the rifts of north-central Kenya volcanism, sedimentation and extensional tectonics commenced and have been continuous since the late Oligocene. Throughout this period the Elgeyo Fault acted as a major bounding fault. A comparative study of the northern and eastern fringes of the Kenya dome with the axial graben reinforces the impression of regional E-W asymmetry. Deviations from the essential N-trend of the Gregory Rift reflect structural weaknesses in the underlying Proterozoic basement, the Mozambique Orogenic Belt: thus south of Lake Baringo the swing to the southeast parallels the axes of the ca. 620 Ma phase folds. Secondary faults associated with this flexure have created a "shark tooth" array, an expression of en echelon offsets of the eastern margin of the Gregory Rift in a transtensional stress regime: hinge zones where major faults intersect on the eastern shoulder feature intense box faulting and ramp structures which have counterparts in the rift

  11. Abrupt plate accelerations shape rifted continental margins

    Brune, Sascha; Williams, Simon E.; Butterworth, Nathaniel P.; Müller, R. Dietmar


    Rifted margins are formed by persistent stretching of continental lithosphere until breakup is achieved. It is well known that strain-rate-dependent processes control rift evolution, yet quantified extension histories of Earth’s major passive margins have become available only recently. Here we investigate rift kinematics globally by applying a new geotectonic analysis technique to revised global plate reconstructions. We find that rifted margins feature an initial, slow rift phase (less than ten millimetres per year, full rate) and that an abrupt increase of plate divergence introduces a fast rift phase. Plate acceleration takes place before continental rupture and considerable margin area is created during each phase. We reproduce the rapid transition from slow to fast extension using analytical and numerical modelling with constant force boundary conditions. The extension models suggest that the two-phase velocity behaviour is caused by a rift-intrinsic strength-velocity feedback, which can be robustly inferred for diverse lithosphere configurations and rheologies. Our results explain differences between proximal and distal margin areas and demonstrate that abrupt plate acceleration during continental rifting is controlled by the nonlinear decay of the resistive rift strength force. This mechanism provides an explanation for several previously unexplained rapid absolute plate motion changes, offering new insights into the balance of plate driving forces through time.

  12. Abrupt plate accelerations shape rifted continental margins.

    Brune, Sascha; Williams, Simon E; Butterworth, Nathaniel P; Müller, R Dietmar


    Rifted margins are formed by persistent stretching of continental lithosphere until breakup is achieved. It is well known that strain-rate-dependent processes control rift evolution, yet quantified extension histories of Earth's major passive margins have become available only recently. Here we investigate rift kinematics globally by applying a new geotectonic analysis technique to revised global plate reconstructions. We find that rifted margins feature an initial, slow rift phase (less than ten millimetres per year, full rate) and that an abrupt increase of plate divergence introduces a fast rift phase. Plate acceleration takes place before continental rupture and considerable margin area is created during each phase. We reproduce the rapid transition from slow to fast extension using analytical and numerical modelling with constant force boundary conditions. The extension models suggest that the two-phase velocity behaviour is caused by a rift-intrinsic strength--velocity feedback, which can be robustly inferred for diverse lithosphere configurations and rheologies. Our results explain differences between proximal and distal margin areas and demonstrate that abrupt plate acceleration during continental rifting is controlled by the nonlinear decay of the resistive rift strength force. This mechanism provides an explanation for several previously unexplained rapid absolute plate motion changes, offering new insights into the balance of plate driving forces through time.

  13. Magmatic cycles pace tectonic and morphological expression of rifting (Afar depression, Ethiopia)

    Medynski, S.; Pik, R.; Burnard, P.; Dumont, S.; Grandin, R.; Williams, A.; Blard, P.-H.; Schimmelpfennig, I.; Vye-Brown, C.; France, L.; Ayalew, D.; Benedetti, L.; Yirgu, G.


    The existence of narrow axial volcanic zones of mid-oceanic ridges testifies of the underlying concentration of both melt distribution and tectonic strain. As a result of repeated diking and faulting, axial volcanic zones therefore represent a spectacular topographic expression of plate divergence. However, the submarine location of oceanic ridges makes it difficult to constrain the interplay between tectonic and magmatic processes in time and space. In this study, we use the Dabbahu-Manda Hararo (DMH) magmatic rift segment (Afar, Ethiopia) to provide quantitative constraints on the response of tectonic processes to variations in magma supply at divergent plate boundaries. The DMH magmatic rift segment is considered an analogue of an oceanic ridge, exhibiting a fault pattern, extension rate and topographic relief comparable to intermediate- to slow-spreading ridges. Here, we focus on the northern and central parts of DMH rift, where we present quantitative slip rates for the past 40 kyr for major and minor normal fault scarps in the vicinity of a recent (September 2005) dike intrusion. The data obtained show that the axial valley topography has been created by enhanced slip rates that occurred during periods of limited volcanism, suggestive of reduced magmatic activity, probably in association with changes in strain distribution in the crust. Our results indicate that the development of the axial valley topography has been regulated by the lifetimes of the magma reservoirs and their spatial distribution along the segment, and thus to the magmatic cycles of replenishment/differentiation (<100 kyr). Our findings are also consistent with magma-induced deformation in magma-rich rift segments. The record of two tectonic events of metric vertical amplitude on the fault that accommodated the most part of surface displacement during the 2005 dike intrusion suggests that the latter type of intrusion occurs roughly every 10 kyr in the northern part of the DMH segment.

  14. Lake-groundwater relationships and fluid-rock interaction in the East African Rift Valley: isotopic evidence

    Darling, W. George; Gizaw, Berhanu; Arusei, Musa K.


    The assessment of water resources in the Rift Valley environment is important for population, agriculture and energy-related issues and depends on a good understanding of the relationship between freshwater lakes and regional groundwater. This can be hampered by the amount of fluid-rock interaction which occurs throughout the rift, obscuring original hydrochemical signatures. However, O and H stable isotope ratios can be used as tracers of infiltration over sometimes considerable distances, while showing that the volcanic edifices of the rift floor have varying effects on groundwater flow patterns. Specific cases from Kenya and Ethiopia are considered, including Lakes Naivasha, Baringo, Awasa and Zwai. In addition to their physical tracing role, stable isotopes can reveal information about processes of fluid-rock interaction. The general lack of O isotope shifting in rift hydrothermal systems suggests a high water:rock ratio, with the implication that these systems are mature. Carbon isotope studies on the predominantly bicarbonate waters of the rift show how they evolve from dilute meteoric recharge to highly alkaline waters, via the widespread silicate hydrolysis promoted by the flux of mantle carbon dioxide which occurs in most parts of the rift. There appears to be only minor differences in the C cycle between Kenya and Ethiopia.

  15. Integrating remote sensing, field studies and CO2 surveys to unravel structural controls on fluid pathways at a young rift volcano

    Hutchison, W.; Mather, T. A.; Pyle, D. M.; Biggs, J.; Yirgu, G.


    In volcanically and seismically active rift systems, pre-existing faults can play a significant role in the development of a volcanic complex, ultimately providing high permeability pathways that magma, hydrothermal fluids and gas can ascend to the surface. The Main Ethiopian Rift (MER) provides an ideal natural laboratory to investigate how pre-existing structures influence active volcanic processes because it hosts a number of young volcanic complexes within an active extensional tectonic setting. In this presentation we bring together observations from new high spatial resolution airborne imagery, field campaigns and CO2 degassing surveys to examine how magma, hydrothermal fluid and gas pathways are coupled to the major structural features on Aluto, a typical young silicic volcanic complex of the MER. Digital mapping of the volcanic complex using new LiDAR DEMs (2-m pixel) reveal that a significant number of lava flow vents and explosion craters on Aluto may be linked to a structural control by either rift-aligned faults that dissect the complex or a volcanic ring fracture. Mapping of surface hydrothermal alteration with aerial photos (geothermal fluid upwellings and confirms their links to the main structures. Results of volcanic CO2 degassing surveys also confirm elevated fluxes (>>100 g m-2 d-1) along major faulting and volcanic structures. There are, however, significant variations in CO2 flux along the fault zones, which can be linked to differences in near surface permeability caused by changes in topography and surface lithology. Overall these different observations of how lava, hydrothermal fluids and gas reach the surface are complementary and provide a strong case for the overarching structural controls on volcanic fluid pathways at present and throughout the evolution of the complex.

  16. Evolving volcanism at the tip of a propagating arc: The earliest high-Mg andesites in northern New Zealand

    Booden, Mathijs A.; Smith, Ian E. M.; Mauk, Jeffrey L.; Black, Philippa M.


    A NNW-striking string of isolated volcanic centers, the Kiwitahi chain, erupted between 15 and 5.5 Ma in northern New Zealand. Prior to 6.2 Ma, the erupted rocks were plagioclase- and hornblende-dominated andesites, which are geochemically comparable to coeval andesites erupted in the nearby, much larger Coromandel Volcanic Zone (CVZ). Compared to CVZ andesites, however, the Kiwitahi andesites show more subdued incompatible element enrichments, and they generally have relatively unradiogenic Sr isotope compositions. These features, and the small eruption volumes involved, suggest that the Kiwitahi centers formed over the edge of a magmatic system that was centered on the CVZ. The Kiwitahi centers progressively become younger towards the SSE representing the migration over the time of the edge of this magmatic system. Between 6.2 and 5.5 Ma, four centers at the southern end of the chain erupted pyroxene-dominated, high-magnesium andesites that are geochemically unlike coeval andesites in the CVZ, but similar to Quaternary high-Mg andesites erupted along the western edge of the Taupo Volcanic Zone. These are the earliest known high-Mg andesites in northern New Zealand; their appearance may mark the inception of the current configuration where high-Mg andesite eruptions precede regular andesitic volcanism at the leading edge of the arc.

  17. Ambient Noise Surface Wave Tomography of the volcanic systems of eastern Iceland

    Green, R. G.; Priestley, K. F.; White, R. S.


    The Vatnajökull region of central-east Iceland lies above the head of the Iceland mantle plume where the crust is thickest due to enhanced melt supply. As a result the region contains a high density of volcanic rift systems, with six large subglacial central volcanoes. Due to the ice cover, the geological structure of the area and the location of past eruptions are poorly known. Imaging of the crustal velocity heterogeneities beneath the ice sheet aims to reveal much in terms of the structure of these volcanic plumbing systems. Mapping of significant velocity changes through time may also be indicative of movement of melt around the central volcanoes; one of which (Bárðarbunga) experienced a major rifting event in August 2014 (Sigmundsson et al. Nature 2015, Green et al. Nature Geosci. 2015). We present results from tomographic imaging of the volcanic systems in the region, using continuous data from a local broadband seismic network in central-east Iceland which provides excellent ray path coverage of the volcanic systems. This is supplemented by data from the HOTSPOT and ICEMELT experiments and the permanent monitoring stations of the Icelandic Meteorological Office. We process the continuous data following Benson et al. 2007 and automatic frequency-time analysis (FTAN) routines are used to extract more than 9000 dispersion measurements. We then generate Rayleigh wave group velocity maps which we present here. We find low velocity regions beneath the Vatnajökull icecap which are bounded by the surface expression of the volcanic rift systems. The lower velocities also extend north-west to the volcanic system under the Hofsjökull ice cap, and northwards towards Askja and the volcanic systems of the northern volcanic zone. We also produce locations and focal mechanisms of earthquakes caused by magmatic and hydrothermal activity to correlate structure with the activity of the volcanic systems.

  18. Basin Modelling of the Laptev Sea Rift, NE Russia

    Brandes, C.; Franke, D.; Piepjohn, K.; Gaedicke, C.


    The Laptev Sea Rift in the northeastern Arctic shelf area of Russia is a standard example for an oceanic rift system that propagates into a continent and plays an important role in the geodynamic models for the opening of the Eurasia Basin. To better understand the evolution of this rift, a basin modelling study was carried out with the software PetroMod®. The software simulates and analyses the burial history and temperature evolution of a sedimentary basin. It is a dynamic forward simulation based on the finite element method. The modelled section used in this study is based on a depth converted seismic section, acquired by the BGR. The section covers the Anisin Basin and is characterized by listric normal faults. The numerical simulation was supported by tectonic and sedimentological field data sets that were collected in outcrops during the CASE 13 expedition in 2011. Normal faults in outcrops were analysed using fault-slip inversion techniques to derive the paleo-extension direction. The presence of normal faults in relatively unconsolidated Paleogene sediments and in Neogene to Quaternary volcanic rocks, indicate very young extension in the area of the New Siberian Islands. The conceptual model for the simulation was built on the basis of the seismic data and the properties of the rocks and sediments observed in the outcrops. Initial results show that the present-day temperature field in the area of the Anisin Basin is characterized by seafloor-parallel isotherms. In the central part of the graben structure, the isotherms are slightly bent down and the heat-flow is reduced, probably due to blanketing effects. An extracted geohistory curve is almost linear and implies that subsidence controlled by faults is the dominating mechanism. From the simulation, sedimentation rates are derived that were highest in the early Paleocene phase of graben development and decreased in the late Eocene.

  19. The lateral extent of volcanic interactions during unrest and eruption

    Biggs, Juliet; Robertson, Elspeth; Cashman, Katharine


    Volcanic eruptions often occur simultaneously or tap multiple magma reservoirs. Such lateral interactions between magmatic systems are attributed to stress changes or hydraulic connections but the precise conditions under which coupled eruptions occur have yet to be quantified. Here we use interferometric synthetic aperture radar satellite data to analyse the surface deformation generated by volcanic unrest in the Kenyan Rift. We identify several magma sources located at depths of 2-5 km importantly, sources that are spaced less than about 10 km apart interact, whereas those spaced more than about 25 km apart do not. However, volcanoes up to 25 km apart have interacted in the geologic past. Thus, volcanic coupling is not simply controlled by the distance between the magma reservoirs. We then consider different tectonic settings globally, including intraplate volcanoes such as Hawaii and Yellowstone, arc volcanism in Alaska and Chile, and other rift settings, such as New Zealand, Iceland and Afar. We find that the most closely spaced magmatic interactions are controlled by the extent of a shallow crystal mush layer, stress changes can couple large eruptions over distances of about 20-40 km, and only large dyke intrusions or subduction earthquakes could generate coupled eruptions over distances of about 50-100 km.

  20. Volcanic unrest in Kenya: geological history from a satellite perspective

    Robertson, E.; Biggs, J.; Edmonds, M.; Vye-Brown, C.


    The East African Rift (EAR) system is a 5,000 km long series of fault bounded depressions that run from Djibouti to Mozambique. In the Kenyan Rift, fourteen Quaternary volcanoes lie along the central rift axis. These volcanoes are principally composed of trachyte pyroclastics and trachyte and basaltic lavas forming low-angle multi-vent edifices. Between 1997 and 2008, geodetic activity has been observed at five Kenyan volcanoes, all of which have undergone periods of caldera collapse and explosive activity. We present a remote-sensing study to investigate the temporal and spatial development of volcanic activity at Longonot volcano. High-resolution mapping using ArcGIS and an immersive 3D visualisation suite (GeovisionaryTM) has been used with imagery derived from ASTER, SPOT5 and GDEM data to identify boundaries of eruptive units and establish relative age in order to add further detail to Longonot's recent eruptive history. Mapping of the deposits at Longonot is key to understand the recent geological history and forms the basis for future volcanic hazard research to inform risk assessments and mitigation programs in Kenya. Calderas at Kenyan volcanoes are elliptical in plan view and we use high-resolution imagery to investigate the regional stresses and structural control leading to the formation of these elliptical calderas. We find that volcanoes in the central and northern segments of the Kenyan rift are elongated nearly parallel to the direction of least horizontal compressive stress, likely as a reflection of the direction of the plate motion vector at the time of caldera collapse. The southern volcanoes however are elongated at an acute angle to the plate motion vector, most likely as a result of oblique opening of the Kenyan rift in this region.

  1. Taos Plateau Volcanic Project: A Vehicle for Integration of Concepts in Igneous Petrology

    Henry, D.; Dutrow, B.


    Integrating concepts of igneous petrology is generally a challenge, but can be effective in the context of a project based on actual field, geochemical and geochronological data. The final lab project in the igneous portion of petrology involves a series of volcanic and associated rock samples that were collected from the Taos Plateau Volcanic Field, New Mexico, USA. Samples were collected over an area of several tens of km2 throughout the Plateau and represent a spatially and temporally correlated rock suite related to continental rifting. Rift-related magmatism encompasses much of the diversity of terrestrial magma types. Compositions of mafic magmas range from tholeiite to some of the most silica-undersaturated magmas found on the continents. Large effusive eruptions from fissures are typical of some rifts, whereas others may be dominated by central vent cones or even silicic caldera complexes. The injection of mantle-derived magma in extending crust may have a profound effect on the rheology of the crust and, therefore, the style of deformation associated with extension. Most of these aspects of rift volcanism and a wide range of mafic to silicic magma compositions are represented in the Rio Grande rift and the volcanic rocks of the Taos Plateau. In addition, much published data exists for whole rock and trace element geochemistry as well as geochronology. Rock samples and associated information are presented so that the student must integrate multiple lines of evidence, petrographic, petrologic, geochemical and geochronological data in a geospatial framework, to establish a geologic history of the region. The student must also draw on skills learned in mineralogy and structural geology furthering core geoscience education. Subsequent to the petrology course, the students visit the Taos Plateau Volcanic Field during their required field camp, thus reinforcing the linkage between the classroom setting and geologic reality.

  2. Depositional and Immersion-Mode Ice Nucleation of Fine-Grained Volcanic Ash Samples

    Cloer, S.; Woods, T.; Genareau, K. D.


    Volcanic lightning is a common phenomenon during explosive eruptions; occurring as vent discharges, near-vent discharges, and plume lightning. Plume lightning is most similar to thunderstorm lightning, where volcanic ash may act as ice nuclei. Volcanic ash samples derived from eight volcanoes: Augustine, Crater Peak, Katmai, Okmok, Redoubt (Alaska, U.S.A.), Lathrop Well (Nevada, U.S.A.), Taupo (New Zealand), and Valles Caldera (New Mexico, U.S.A.); were used to determine what roles ash mineralogy, particularly Fe-oxide-bearing minerals and silica-enriched minerals, grain shape, and grain size have in the nucleation of ice, which can generate plume lightning. Depositional and immersion-mode ice nucleation experiments were performed using a Nicolet Almega XR Dispersive Raman spectrometer, following the methods of Schill et al. (2015), where samples were shaken for 24 h prior to experiments in ultra-pure water, then nebulized to super micron droplets. Depositional nucleation experiments were conducted from 225-235 K, and immersion-mode nucleation experiments were conducted from 233-278 K. A JEOL JSM 6010 Plus/LA scanning electron microscope (SEM), along with Image-J freeware, was used to quantify the number density of Fe-oxide mineral phases in backscattered electron images, with an x-ray diffractometer (XRD) used to determine bulk mineral abundance and an x-ray fluorescence (XRF) spectrometer to determine bulk ash composition. Based on previous studies, we hypothesize that all ash samples will efficiently form depositional ice nuclei; however, certain mineral phases will dictate the efficiency of immersion-mode ice nucleation including K or Na / Ca feldspars, which have been shown to be efficient nuclei, and Fe-oxide-bearing minerals. These results will shed new light on volcanic cloud dynamics and add new parameters for atmospheric models, which currently only address effects of mineral dust as ice nuclei and overlook the potential role of volcanic ash.

  3. Microstructural and seismic properties of the upper mantle underneath a rifted continental terrane (Baja California): An example of sub-crustal mechanical asthenosphere?

    Palasse, L.N.; Vissers, R.L.M.; Paulssen, H.; Basu, A.R.; Drury, M.R.


    The Gulf of California rift is a young and active plate boundary that links the San Andreas strike-slip fault system in California to the oceanic spreading system of the East Pacific Rise. The xenolith bearing lavas of the San Quintin volcanic area provide lower crust and upper mantle samples from b

  4. Stratigraphic Modelling of Continental Rifting

    Mondy, Luke; Duclaux, Guillaume; Salles, Tristan; Thomas, Charmaine; Rey, Patrice


    Interlinks between deformation and sedimentation have long been recognised as an important factor in the evolution of continental rifts and basins development. However, determining the relative impact of tectonic and climatic forcing on the dynamics of these systems remains a major challenge. This problem in part derives from a lack of modelling tools capable of simulated high detailed surface processes within a large scale (spatially and temporally) tectonic setting. To overcome this issue an innovative framework has been designed using two existing numerical forward modelling codes: Underworld, capable of simulating 3D self-consistent tectonic and thermal lithospheric processes, and Tellus, a forward stratigraphic and geomorphic modelling framework dedicated to simulating highly detailed surface dynamics. The coupling framework enables Tellus to use Underworld outputs as internal and boundary conditions, thereby simulating the stratigraphic and geomorphic evolution of a realistic, active tectonic setting. The resulting models can provide high-resolution data on the stratigraphic record, grain-size variations, sediment provenance, fluvial hydrometric, and landscape evolution. Here we illustrate a one-way coupling method between active tectonics and surface processes in an example of 3D oblique rifting. Our coupled model enables us to visualise the distribution of sediment sources and sinks, and their evolution through time. From this we can extract and analyse at each simulation timestep the stratigraphic record anywhere within the model domain. We find that even from a generic oblique rift model, complex fluvial-deltaic and basin filling dynamics emerge. By isolating the tectonic activity from landscape dynamics with this one-way coupling, we are able to investigate the influence of changes in climate or geomorphic parameters on the sedimentary and landscape record. These impacts can be quantified in part via model post-processing to derive both instantaneous and

  5. Rift Valley fever outbreak, southern Mauritania, 2012.

    Sow, Abdourahmane; Faye, Ousmane; Ba, Yamar; Ba, Hampathé; Diallo, Diawo; Faye, Oumar; Loucoubar, Cheikh; Boushab, Mohamed; Barry, Yahya; Diallo, Mawlouth; Sall, Amadou Alpha


    After a period of heavy rainfall, an outbreak of Rift Valley fever occurred in southern Mauritania during September-November 2012. A total of 41 human cases were confirmed, including 13 deaths, and 12 Rift Valley fever virus strains were isolated. Moudjeria and Temchecket Departments were the most affected areas.

  6. Amazonian volcanism inside Valles Marineris on Mars

    Brož, Petr; Hauber, Ernst; Wray, James J.; Michael, Gregory


    The giant trough system of Valles Marineris is one of the most spectacular landforms on Mars, yet its origin is still unclear. Although often referred to as a rift, it also shows some characteristics that are indicative of collapse processes. For decades, one of the major open questions was whether volcanism was active inside the Valles Marineris. Here we present evidence for a volcanic field on the floor of the deepest trough of Valles Marineris, Coprates Chasma. More than 130 individual edifices resemble scoria and tuff cones, and are associated with units that are interpreted as lava flows. Crater counts indicate that the volcanic field was emplaced sometime between ∼0.4 Ga and ∼0.2 Ga. The spatial distribution of the cones displays a control by trough-parallel subsurface structures, suggesting magma ascent in feeder dikes along trough-bounding normal faults. Spectral data reveal an opaline-silica-rich unit associated with at least one of the cones, indicative of hydrothermal processes. Our results point to magma-water interaction, an environment of astrobiological interest, perhaps associated with late-stage activity in the evolution of Valles Marineris, and suggest that the floor of Coprates Chasma is promising target for the in situ exploration of Mars.

  7. Basaltic ignimbrites in monogenetic volcanism: the example of La Garrotxa volcanic field

    Martí, J.; Planagumà, L. l.; Geyer, A.; Aguirre-Díaz, G.; Pedrazzi, D.; Bolós, X.


    Ignimbrites are pyroclastic density current deposits common in explosive volcanism involving intermediate and silicic magmas and in less abundance in eruptions of basaltic central and shield volcanoes. However, they are not widely described in association with monogenetic volcanism, where typical products include lava flows, scoria and lapilli fall deposits, as well as various kinds of pyroclastic density current deposits and explosion breccias. In La Garrotxa basaltic monogenetic volcanic field, part of the Neogene-Quaternary European rift system located in the northeast of the Iberian Peninsula, we have identified a particular group of pyroclastic density current deposits that show similar textural characteristics to silicic ignimbrites, indicating an overlap in transport and depositional processes. These deposits can be clearly distinguished from other pyroclastic density current deposits generated during phreatomagmatic phases that typically correspond to thinly laminated units with planar-to-cross-bedded stratification. The monogenetic ignimbrite deposits correspond to a few meters to several tens of meters thick units rich in lithic- and lapilli scoria fragments, with an abundant ash matrix, and internally massive structure, emplaced along valleys and gullies, with run-out distances up to 6 km and individual volumes ranging from 106 to 1.5 × 107 m3. The presence of flattened scoria and columnar jointing in some of these deposits suggests relatively high emplacement temperatures, coinciding with available paleomagnetic data that suggests an emplacement temperature around 450-500 °C. In this work, we describe the main characteristics of these pyroclastic deposits that were generated by a number of phreatomagmatic episodes. Comparison with similar deposits from silicic eruptions and previous examples of ignimbrites associated with basaltic volcanism allows us to classify them as `basaltic ignimbrites'. The recognition in monogenetic volcanism of such

  8. The sub-volcanic system of El Hierro, Canary Islands

    Galindo, I.; Becerril, L.; Gudmundsson, A.


    The main volcanotectonic structures of El Hierro are three rift zones, trending northeast, west, and south. Most of the eruptions in El Hierro within these zones are basaltic fissure eruptions fed by subvertical dykes. The dykes appear as close to collinear or slightly offset segments, their surface expressions being clusters of cinder cones and eruptive vents. Three large landslides, referred to as El Golfo, El Julan, and Las Playas, have eroded the areas between rift axes and provide exposures that make it possible to provide a three-dimensional view of the uppermost part of the sub-volcanic system. Here we report the results of a structural study of the sub-volcanic system as obtained through the analysis of dykes and eruptive vents. The data obtained from surface outcrops have been combined with data from subsurface water galleries. More than 600 eruptive vents and 625 dykes have been studied in detail to characterise the subvolcanic system of the island. Using cinder-cone and other eruptive-vent alignments it has been possible to infer 115 eruptive fissures with lengths that range from 40 m to 2200 m. NE-SW trending volcanic fissures and dykes are common on the entire island and predominate in the northeast rift zone. The main strike of the dykes and fissures in the south and west rift zones are approximately NNW-SSE and E-W, respectively. However, in the west rift zone, eruptive fissures display a fan distribution with directions that range from N43°E to N124°E. Volcanic fissures within the El Golfo landslide valley trend parallel to the head scarp, except those that are close to the head of the valley, many of which are perpendicular to the scarp. Dykes show a radial distribution in the head scarp of the El Golfo landslide. Three feeder-dykes directly connected with their lava flows have been identified in El Hierro. Feeder dykes are difficult to observe in the field but provide important information when their lengths and thicknesses can be measured

  9. Submarine Volcanic Morphology of Santorini Caldera, Greece

    Nomikou, P.; Croff Bell, K.; Carey, S.; Bejelou, K.; Parks, M.; Antoniou, V.


    Santorini volcanic group form the central part of the modern Aegean volcanic arc, developed within the Hellenic arc and trench system, because of the ongoing subduction of the African plate beneath the European margin throughout Cenozoic. It comprises three distinct volcanic structures occurring along a NE-SW direction: Christianna form the southwestern part of the group, Santorini occupies the middle part and Koloumbo volcanic rift zone extends towards the northeastern part. The geology of the Santorini volcano has been described by a large number of researchers with petrological as well as geochronological data. The offshore area of the Santorini volcanic field has only recently been investigated with emphasis mainly inside the Santorini caldera and the submarine volcano of Kolumbo. In September 2011, cruise NA-014 on the E/V Nautilus carried out new surveys on the submarine volcanism of the study area, investigating the seafloor morphology with high-definition video imaging. Submarine hydrothermal vents were found on the seafloor of the northern basin of the Santorini caldera with no evidence of high temperature fluid discharges or massive sulphide formations, but only low temperature seeps characterized by meter-high mounds of bacteria-rich sediment. This vent field is located in line with the normal fault system of the Kolumbo rift, and also near the margin of a shallow intrusion that occurs within the sediments of the North Basin. Push cores have been collected and they will provide insights for their geochemical characteristics and their relationship to the active vents of the Kolumbo underwater volcano. Similar vent mounds occur in the South Basin, at shallow depths around the islets of Nea and Palaia Kameni. ROV exploration at the northern slopes of Nea Kameni revealed a fascinating underwater landscape of lava flows, lava spines and fractured lava blocks that have been formed as a result of 1707-1711 and 1925-1928 AD eruptions. A hummocky topography at

  10. Spatial variation of volcanic rock geochemistry in the Virunga Volcanic Province: Statistical analysis of an integrated database

    Barette, Florian; Poppe, Sam; Smets, Benoît; Benbakkar, Mhammed; Kervyn, Matthieu


    We present an integrated, spatially-explicit database of existing geochemical major-element analyses available from (post-) colonial scientific reports, PhD Theses and international publications for the Virunga Volcanic Province, located in the western branch of the East African Rift System. This volcanic province is characterised by alkaline volcanism, including silica-undersaturated, alkaline and potassic lavas. The database contains a total of 908 geochemical analyses of eruptive rocks for the entire volcanic province with a localisation for most samples. A preliminary analysis of the overall consistency of the database, using statistical techniques on sets of geochemical analyses with contrasted analytical methods or dates, demonstrates that the database is consistent. We applied a principal component analysis and cluster analysis on whole-rock major element compositions included in the database to study the spatial variation of the chemical composition of eruptive products in the Virunga Volcanic Province. These statistical analyses identify spatially distributed clusters of eruptive products. The known geochemical contrasts are highlighted by the spatial analysis, such as the unique geochemical signature of Nyiragongo lavas compared to other Virunga lavas, the geochemical heterogeneity of the Bulengo area, and the trachyte flows of Karisimbi volcano. Most importantly, we identified separate clusters of eruptive products which originate from primitive magmatic sources. These lavas of primitive composition are preferentially located along NE-SW inherited rift structures, often at distance from the central Virunga volcanoes. Our results illustrate the relevance of a spatial analysis on integrated geochemical data for a volcanic province, as a complement to classical petrological investigations. This approach indeed helps to characterise geochemical variations within a complex of magmatic systems and to identify specific petrologic and geochemical investigations

  11. Sedimentology and significance of an early syn-rift paleovalley, Wadi Tayiba, Suez Rift, Egypt

    Jackson, Christopher Aiden-Lee


    Wadi Tayiba is located along the western margin of the Hammam Faraun fault block, western Sinai, Egypt and is generally thought to contain exposures of the 'type-section' for late pre-rift to early syn-rift stratigraphy associated with the Oligo-Miocene Suez Rift. Previous studies have suggested a complex vertical succession of sedimentary facies characterise the late pre-rift to early syn-rift and imply major and abrupt variations in relative sea-level during this time. Detailed sedimentological and stratigraphic analysis of the Wadi Tayiba type-section presented in this study identifies not only a far simpler vertical facies succession than previously suggested but also the development of a major paleovalley system at the base of the early syn-rift succession. It is suggested that this subtle but significant feature is the cause of the complex vertical facies succession previously interpreted. It is concluded that continuous marine sedimentation and only moderate amplitude variations in relative sea-level occurred during the Eocene to Early Oligocene within at least this part of the Suez Rift. A major relative sea-level fall occurred during the middle Oligocene and a regionally developed erosional surface associated with this event marks the contact between late pre-rift and early syn-rift strata. The results of this study have major implications for sub-regional correlations of late pre-rift to early syn-rift stratigraphic units and resultant palaeogeographic reconstructions of the late pre-rift to early syn-rift period.

  12. Seismic evidence for a crustal magma reservoir beneath the upper east rift zoneof Kilauea volcano, Hawaii

    Lin, Guoqing; Amelung, Falk; Lavallee, Yan; Okubo, Paul G.


    An anomalous body with low Vp (compressional wave velocity), low Vs (shear wave velocity), and high Vp/Vs anomalies is observed at 8–11 km depth beneath the upper east rift zone of Kilauea volcano in Hawaii by simultaneous inversion of seismic velocity structure and earthquake locations. We interpret this body to be a crustal magma reservoir beneath the volcanic pile, similar to those widely recognized beneath mid-ocean ridge volcanoes. Combined seismic velocity and petrophysical models suggest the presence of 10% melt in a cumulate magma mush. This reservoir could have supplied the magma that intruded into the deep section of the east rift zone and caused its rapid expansion following the 1975 M7.2 Kalapana earthquake.

  13. Is the Gop rift oceanic? A reevaluation of the Seychelles-India conjugate margins

    Guan, Huixin; Werner, Philippe; Geoffroy, Laurent


    Recent studies reevaluated the timing and evolution of the breakup process between the Seychelles continental ridge and India, and the relationship between this evolution and mantle melting associated with the Deccan Igneous Province1,2,3. Those studies, mainly based on gravity and seismic refraction surveys, point that the oceanic domain located between the Seychelles and the Laxmi Ridge (here designed as the Carlsberg Basin) is the youngest oceanic domain between India and the Seychelles. To the East of the Laxmi Ridge, the aborted Gop Rift is considered as an older highly magmatic extensional continental system with magmatism, breakup and oceanic spreading being coeval with or even predating the emplacement of the major pulse of the Deccan trapps. This interpretation on the oceanic nature of the Gop Rift conflicts with other extensive surveys based on magnetic and seismic reflection data4 which suggest that the Gop Rift is an extended syn-magmatic continental domain. In our work based (a) on the existing data, (b) on new deep-seismic reflection surveys (already published by Misra5) down to the Moho and underlying mantle and (c) on new concepts on the geometry of volcanic passive margins, we propose a distinct interpretation of the Seychelles-India system. As proposed by former authors6,7, the Indian margin suffered some continental stretching and thinning before the onset of the Deccan traps during the Mesozoic. Thus continental crust thickness cannot be used easily as a proxy of syn-magmatic stretching-thinning processes or even to infer the presence or not of oceanic-type crust based, solely, on crustal thickness. However, some remarkable features appear on some of the deep penetration seismic lines we studied. We illustrate that the whole Seychelles/India system, before the opening of the present-day "Carlsberg Basin" may simply be regarded as a pair of sub-symmetric conjugate volcanic passive margins (VPMs) with inner and outer SDR wedges dipping towards the

  14. Oblique rifting at Tempe Fossae, Mars

    Fernández, Carlos; Anguita, Francisco


    This work shows the results of a structural study of the faults observed at the Tempe Rift (northeastern Tharsis region), Mars. A new, detailed map of faults and fault systems was used to geometrically characterize the fracture architecture of the Tempe Rift and to measure fault length, displacement, and spacing data, to analyze the spatial distribution of fault centroids, and to investigate the fractal nature of fault trace maps. A comparison with analog models and the use of conventional techniques of fault population analysis show that the Tempe Rift was most probably generated under sinistral oblique-rifting processes, which highlights the importance of the presence of inherited fractures in the tectonic evolution of the Noachian crust. The angle between the extension direction and the rift axis varies along the Tempe Rift, ranging from 50°-60° at its central southern part to 66°-88° to the southwest. Fault scaling relationships are similar to those found at mid-ocean ridges on Earth with exponential fault length-frequency distributions. Localized, inhomogeneous deformation generated weakly interacting faults, spanning the entire thickness of the mechanical layer. This thickness decreased from southwest to northeast along the rift, along with distance from the central part of the Tharsis dome.

  15. Kinematics of the Ethiopian Rift and Absolute motion of Africa and Somalia Plates

    Muluneh, A. A.; Cuffaro, M.; Doglioni, C.


    The Ethiopian Rift (ER), in the northern part of East African Rift System (EARS), forms a boundary zone accommodating differential motion between Africa and Somalia Plates. Its orientation was influenced by the inherited Pan-African collisional system and related lithospheric fabric. We present the kinematics of ER derived from compilation of geodetic velocities, focal mechanism inversions, structural data analysis, and construction of geological profiles. GPS velocity field shows a systematic eastward magnitude increase in NE direction in the central ER. In the same region, incremental extensional strain axes recorded by earthquake focal mechanism and fault slip inversion show ≈N1000E orientation. This deviation between GPS velocity trajectories and orientation of incremental extensional strain is developed due to left lateral transtensional deformation. This interpretation is consistent with the en-échelon pattern of tensional and transtensional faults, the distribution of the volcanic centers, and the asymmetry of the rift itself. Small amount of vertical axis blocks rotation, sinistral strike slip faults and dyke intrusions in the rift accommodate the transtensional deformation. We analyzed the kinematics of ER relative to Deep and Shallow Hot Spot Reference Frames (HSRF). Comparison between the two reference frames shows different kinematics in ER and also Africa and Somalia plate motion both in magnitude and direction. Plate spreading direction in shallow HSRF (i.e. the source of the plumes locates in the asthenosphere) and the trend of ER deviate by about 27°. Shearing and extension across the plate boundary zone contribute both to the style of deformation and overall kinematics in the rift. We conclude that the observed long wavelength kinematics and tectonics are consequences of faster SW ward motion of Africa than Somalia in the shallow HSRF. This reference frame seems more consistent with the geophysical and geological constraints in the Rift. The

  16. Sediment infill within rift basins: Facies distribution and effects of deformation: Examples from the Kenya and Tanganyika Rifts, East Africa

    Tiercelin, J.J.; Lezzar, K.E. (Universite de Bretagne Occidentale, Brest (France)); Richert, J.P. (Elf Aquitaine, Pau (France))


    Oil is known from lacustrine basins of the east African rift. The geology of such basins is complex and different depending on location in the eastern and western branches. The western branch has little volcanism, leading to long-lived basins, such as Lake Tanganyika, whereas a large quantity of volcanics results in the eastern branch characterized by ephemeral basins, as the Baringo-Bogoria basin in Kenya. The Baringo-Bogoria basin is a north-south half graben formed in the middle Pleistocene and presently occupied by the hypersaline Lake Bogoria and the freshwater Lake Baringo. Lake Bogoria is fed by hot springs and ephemeral streams controlled by grid faults bounding the basin to the west. The sedimentary fill is formed by cycles of organic oozes having a good petroleum potential and evaporites. On the other hand, and as a consequence of the grid faults, Lake Baringo is fed by permanent streams bringing into the basin large quantities of terrigenous sediments. Lake Tanganyika is a meromictic lake 1470 m deep and 700 km long, of middle Miocene age. It is subdivided into seven asymmetric half grabens separated by transverse ridges. The sedimentary fill is thick and formed by organic oozes having a very good petroleum potential. In contrast to Bogoria, the lateral distribution of organic matter is characterized by considerable heterogeneity due to the existence of structural blocks or to redepositional processes.

  17. Prolonged post-rift magmatism on highly extended crust of divergent continental margins (Baiyun Sag, South China Sea)

    Zhao, Fang; Alves, Tiago M.; Wu, Shiguo; Li, Wei; Huuse, Mads; Mi, Lijun; Sun, Qiliang; Ma, Benjun


    Three-dimensional (3D) seismic, borehole and geochemical data reveal a prolonged phase of post-rift magmatism on highly extended crust of the Baiyun Sag, South China Sea. Two volcanic complexes are identified and described in the context of continental rifting and diachronous continental breakup of the South China Sea. Biostratigraphic data from exploration wells BY7-1 and BY2, complemented by K-Ar datings from core samples, confirm that magmatic activity in the Baiyun Sag occurred in two main stages: (1) a first episode at the base of the Miocene (23.8 Ma); and (2) a second episode occurring at the end of the Early Miocene (17.6 Ma). The relative location of volcanic complexes in the Baiyun Sag, and their stratigraphic position, reveals prolonged magmatism inboard of the ocean-continent transition zone during continental breakup. We suggest that magmatism in the Baiyun Sag reflects progressive continental breakup in the South China Sea, with the last volcanic episode marking the end of a breakup sequence representing the early post-rift tectonic events associated with the continental breakup process. Seismic and borehole data from this breakup sequence records diachronous magma emplacement and complex changes in depositional environments during continental breakup.

  18. The rift architecture and extensional tectonics of the South China Sea

    Cameselle, Alejandra L.; Ranero, César R.; Barckhausen, Udo; Franke, Dieter


    Non-volcanic rifted continental margins are classically described as the product of lithospheric stretching and breakup leading to mantle exhumation, and subsequent seafloor spreading. However, recent studies question this model and indicate a wider range of structural evolutions, that challenge the existing model (e.g. Australia-Antarctic Rift System (Direen et al. 2007, 2011); the Tyrrhenian basin (Prada et al., 2014) or the South China Sea (Cameselle et al. 2015)). Rifting in the South China Sea developed from a series of extensional events, from early Eocene to Late Oligocene, resulting in a V-shape oceanic basin affected by the occurrence of several spreading centers, ridges, transform faults and post-spreading volcanism. In recent years, this marginal basin - the largest in East Asia - has increasingly become one of the key sites for the study of rifting and continental break-up. Its relative small size - compared to many classic, Atlantic-type continental margin settings - allows to easily match conjugated rifted margins and its relative youth promotes the preservation of its original nature. To examine the rifting evolution of the South China Sea, we have reprocessed with modern algorithms multichannel seismic profiles acquired during Sonne49 and BGR84 cruises across the three major subbasins: NW, SW and East subbasins. State-of-the-art of processing techniques have been used to increase the signal to noise ratio, including Tau-P and Wiener predictive deconvolution, multiple attenuation by both radon filtering and wave-equation-based surface-related multiple elimination (SRME) and time migration. To complement seismic interpretation, available vintage multichannel seismic data have been reprocessed with a post-stack flow, including Wiener deconvolution, FK-filtering, space and time variant band-pass filter and time migration. The improving quality of the seismic images shows a range of features including post-rift and syn-rift sediments, the structure of

  19. Geodetic results in Afar: The rifting episode of November 1978 in the Asal-Ghoubbet rift

    Kasser, M.; Lepine, J. C.; Ruegg, J. C.; Tarantula, A.


    A seismo-tectonic and volcanic crisis occurred in November 1978 in the Asal-Ghoubbet rift, first subaerial section of the accreting plate boundary between the African and Arabian plates (Allard et al., 1979; Abdallah et al., 1979; Le Dain et al., 1980). The activity was located in the center of a geodetic network set up in the winter 1972-1973 by the Institut Géographique National in collaboration with the Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris. Simultaneously, a precise levelling line of about 100 km was established across the area (I.G.N., 1973). The resurveying of both the geodetic network and the levelling line was carried out after the crisis, between November 1978 and March 1979. Extensions up to 2.4 m and vertical displacements up to 0.7 m were measured. Operating techniques and results of the resurveying are described in Kasser et al. (1979) and Ruegg et al. (1979). Figure 1 shows the horizontal displacements (relating to point B and to the direction BT) and figure 2 shows the vertical displacements relating to the two external points. Tarantola et al. (1979, 1980) have shown that these results can be geodynamically interpreted by a mechanism of sudden breaking and elastic rebound after an elastic stretching of the crust due to the relative drift of the plates. The breaking is triggered by magmatic fracturing of the crust, with dykes injection from a magmatic chamber which has fed the basaltic fissurai eruption. The horizontal and vertical displacements outside the broken zone of the Inner Floor are predicted by a numerical model based on this interpretation which fit very well the experimental data.

  20. Did Paleogene North Atlantic rift-related eruptions drive early Eocene climate cooling?

    Jolley, David W.; Widdowson, Mike


    The delivery of volcanogenic sulphur into the upper atmosphere by explosive eruptions is known to cause significant temporary climate cooling. Therefore, phreatomagmatic and phreatoplinian eruptions occurring during the final rifting stages of active flood basalt provinces provide a potent mechanism for triggering climate change. During the early Eocene, the northeast Atlantic margin was subjected to repeated ashfall for 0.5 m.y. This was the result of extensive phreatomagmatic activity along 3000 km of the opening northeast Atlantic rift. These widespread, predominantly basaltic ashes are now preserved in marine sediments of the Balder Formation and its equivalents, and occur over an area extending from the Faroe Islands to Denmark and southern England. These ash-bearing sediments also contain pollen and spore floras derived from low diversity forests that grew in cooler, drier climates than were experienced either before or after these highly explosive eruptions. In addition, coeval plant macrofossil evidence from the Bighorn Basin, Wyoming, USA, also shows a comparable pattern of vegetation change. The coincidence of the ashes and cooler climate pollen and spore floras in northwest Europe identifies volcanism as the primary cause of climate cooling. Estimates show that whilst relatively few phreatomagmatic eruptive centres along the 3000 km opening rift system could readily generate 0.5-1 °C cooling, on an annual basis, only persistent or repeated volcanic phases would have been able to achieve the long-term cooling effect observed in the floral record. We propose that the cumulative effect of repeated Balder Formation eruptions initiated a biodiversity crisis in the northeast Atlantic margin forests. Only the decline of this persistent volcanic activity, and the subsequent climatic warming at the start of the Eocene Thermal Maximum allowed the growth of subtropical forests to develop across the region.

  1. Groundwater dynamics in the complex aquifer system of Gidabo River Basin, southern Main Ethiopian Rift: Evidences from hydrochemistry and isotope hydrology

    Degu, Abraham; Birk, Steffen; Dietzel, Martin; Winkler, Gerfried; Moggessie, Aberra


    Located in the tectonically active Main Ethiopian Rift system, the Gidabo River Basin in Ethiopia has a complex hydrogeological setting. The strong physiographic variation from highland to rift floor, variability in volcanic structures and disruption of lithologies by cross-cutting faults contribute for their complex nature of hydrogeology in the area. Until now, the groundwater dynamics and the impact of the tectonic setting on groundwater flow in this region are not well understood, though the local population heavily depends on groundwater as the major water supply. A combined approach based on hydrochemical and isotopic data was applied to investigate the regional flow dynamics of the groundwater and the impact of tectonic setting. Groundwater evolves from slightly mineralized Ca-Mg-HCO3 on the highland to highly mineralized Na-HCO3 dominating type in the deep rift floor aquifers. δ18O and δD composition of groundwater show a general progressive enrichment from the highland to the rift floor, except in thermal and deep rift floor aquifers. Relatively the thermal and deep rift floor aquifers are depleted and show similar signature to the groundwaters of highland, indicating groundwater inflow from the highland. Correspondingly, rising HCO3 and increasingly enriched signatures of δ 13C points to hydrochemical evolution of DIC and diffuse influx of mantle CO2 into the groundwater system. Thermal springs gushing out along some of the fault zones, specifically in the vicinity of Dilla town, display clear influence of mantle CO2 and are an indication of the role of the faults acting as a conduit for deep circulating thermal water to the surface. By considering the known geological structures of the rift, hydrochemical and isotopic data we propose a conceptual groundwater flow model by characterizing flow paths to the main rift axis. The connection between groundwater flow and the impact of faults make this model applicable to other active rift systems with similar

  2. Two-Dimensional Numerical Modeling of Intracontinental Extension: A Case Study Of the Baikal Rift Formation

    Yang, H.; Chemia, Zurab; Artemieva, Irina

    and geophysical studies, the geodynamic origin and evolution of the BRZ is still debated. We applytwo-dimensional finite difference code to model the lithosphere-scale de-formation in several locations across the strike of the Baikal Rift zone. The model se-tup takes an advantage of regional geophysical models...... to determinethe set of parameters that may define regional li-thosphere evolution towards the present lithosphere structure, which we further con-trol by gravity data, regional volcanism, and the age of the BRZ formation. We dem-onstrate the roleof pre-existing faults on the BRZ evolution and on formation of "off...

  3. Subsurface images of the Eastern Rift, Africa, from the joint inversion of body waves, surface waves and gravity: investigating the role of fluids in early-stage continental rifting

    Roecker, S.; Ebinger, C.; Tiberi, C.; Mulibo, G.; Ferdinand-Wambura, R.; Mtelela, K.; Kianji, G.; Muzuka, A.; Gautier, S.; Albaric, J.; Peyrat, S.


    The Eastern Rift System (ERS) of northern Tanzania and southern Kenya, where a cratonic lithosphere is in the early stages of rifting, offers an ideal venue for investigating the roles of magma and other fluids in such an environment. To illuminate these roles, we jointly invert arrival times of locally recorded P and S body waves, phase delays of ambient noise generated Rayleigh waves and Bouguer anomalies from gravity observations to generate a 3-D image of P and S wave speeds in the upper 25 km of the crust. While joint inversion of gravity and arrival times requires a relationship between density and wave speeds, the improvement in resolution obtained by the combination of these disparate data sets serves to further constrain models, and reduce uncertainties. The most significant features in the 3-D model are (1) P and S wave speeds that are 10-15 per cent lower beneath the rift zone than in the surrounding regions, (2) a relatively high wave speed tabular feature located along the western edge of the Natron and Manyara rifts, and (3) low (˜1.71) values of Vp/Vs throughout the upper crust, with the lowest ratios along the boundaries of the rift zones. The low P and S wave speeds at mid-crustal levels beneath the rift valley are an expected consequence of active volcanism, and the tabular, high-wave speed feature is interpreted to be an uplifted footwall at the western edge of the rift. Given the high levels of CO2 outgassing observed at the surface along border fault zones, and the sensitivity of Vp/Vs to pore-fluid compressibility, we infer that the low Vp/Vs values in and around the rift zone are caused by the volcanic plumbing in the upper crust being suffused by a gaseous CO2 froth on top of a deeper, crystalline mush. The repository for molten rock is likely located in the lower crust and upper mantle, where the Vp/Vs ratios are significantly higher.

  4. Deepening, and repairing, the metabolic rift.

    Schneider, Mindi; McMichael, Philip


    This paper critically assesses the metabolic rift as a social, ecological, and historical concept describing the disruption of natural cycles and processes and ruptures in material human-nature relations under capitalism. As a social concept, the metabolic rift presumes that metabolism is understood in relation to the labour process. This conception, however, privileges the organisation of labour to the exclusion of the practice of labour, which we argue challenges its utility for analysing contemporary socio-environmental crises. As an ecological concept, the metabolic rift is based on outmoded understandings of (agro) ecosystems and inadequately describes relations and interactions between labour and ecological processes. Historically, the metabolic rift is integral to debates about the definitions and relations of capitalism, industrialism, and modernity as historical concepts. At the same time, it gives rise to an epistemic rift, insofar as the separation of the natural and social worlds comes to be expressed in social thought and critical theory, which have one-sidedly focused on the social. We argue that a reunification of the social and the ecological, in historical practice and in historical thought, is the key to repairing the metabolic rift, both conceptually and practically. The food sovereignty movement in this respect is exemplary.

  5. Thermochronological investigation of the timing of rifting and rift segmentation in the Gulf of Suez, Egypt

    Bosworth, W.; Stockli, D. F.


    The Tertiary Gulf of Suez rift system is one of the best-studied continental rift systems and has inspired many fundamental geodynamic models for continental rifting. However, our limited knowledge of how extensional strain is spatially and temporally distributed has made it difficult to adequately evaluate models for the dynamic evolution of this rift. A critical aspect of constraining the evolution of rifting and rift segmentation in the Gulf of Suez involves acquiring reliable geochronological constraints on extensional faulting. This study has commenced a systematic investigation of the timing and spatial distribution of rifting, lateral rift segmentation, and rift localization within the Gulf of Suez, Egypt, employing apatite and zircon (U-Th)/He thermochronometry. (U-Th)/He thermochronometric analysis of sample transects from exhumed fault blocks within the rift integrated with structural data will allow us to directly determine the timing, distribution, and magnitude of extension. The onset of major rifting (~24-19 Ma) in the Gulf of Suez was marked by the development of crustal domino-style tilt blocks and syn-rift deposition of the late Oligocene non-marine Abu Zenima Fm and non-marine to restricted marine Nukhul Fm. Development of the Gulf of Aqaba-Dead Sea transform cut off the rift from the Red Sea rift at an early extensional stage. Apatite (AHe) and zircon (ZHe) (U- Th)/He data were collected from basement and pre-rift sedimentary sample transects from the central and southern Sinai Peninsula portion and the Gebel El Zeit area in the southern Gulf of Suez as well as from basement samples from selected drill cores off Gebel El Zeit. Preliminary data exhibit partially reset ages trending as old as ~70 Ma (AHe) and ~450 Ma (ZHe) from shallower structural levels (Proterozoic basement and Phanerozoic cover sequence). Structurally deeper samples yield abundant AHe ages of ~22-24 Ma, indicative of rapid cooling and exhumation during the early Miocene. More

  6. Incipient continental rifting: Insights from the Okavango Rift Zone, northwestern Botswana

    Kinabo, Baraka Damas

    In this dissertation aeromagnetic, gravity, and Shuttle Radar Topography Mission Digital Elevation Model (SRTM DEM) data from the Okavango Rift Zone in northwest Botswana are used to map the distribution of rift and basement structures. The distribution of these structures provide useful insights into the early stages of continental rifting. The objectives of this study are (1) assessing the role of pre-existing structures on rift basin development, (2) characterizing the geometry of the nascent rift basins, (3) documenting fault growth and propagation patterns, and (4) investigating the border fault development. Potential field data especially aeromagnetic data are used to map out structures in the sediment covered basement, whereas SRTM DEM data express the surface morphology of the structures. The azimuth of rift faults parallel the orientation of the fold axes and the prominent foliation directions of the basement rocks. This indicates that pre-existing structures in the basement influenced the development of the rift structures. NE dipping faults consistently exhibit greater displacements than SE dipping faults, suggesting a developing half-graben geometry. Individual faults grow by along axis linkage of small segments that develop from soft linkage (under lapping to overlapping segments) to hard linkage (hooking, fused segments). Major rifts faults are also linking through transfer zones by the process of "fault piracy" to establish an immature border fault system. The relationships between scam heights and vertical throws reveal that the young and active faults are located outside the rift while the faults with no recent activities are in the middle suggesting that the rift is also growing in width. This study demonstrates the utility of potential field data and SRTM DEM to provide a 3-D view of incipient continental rifting processes such as fault growth and propagation.

  7. Petrogenesis and geodynamic significance of silicic volcanism in the western Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt

    Petrone, C. M.; Ferrari, L.; Orozco, M. A.; Lopez Martinez, M.


    Silicic volcanism in the western Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt (WTMVB) was defined a Pliocene ignimbrite flare-up associated with the rifting of the Jalisco block from mainland Mexico (Frey et al., 2007; GSAB). With the integration of new and published geochronologic, geochemical, and isotope data we revise this interpretation and propose a new petrogenetic model. The oldest silicic volcanism consists of large silicic domes and minor pyroclastic flows (~370 km3) emplaced to the north of Guadalajara above a thick succession of ~11 to 8.7 Ma basaltic lavas, which yielded Ar-Ar and obsidian FT ages of ~7.5 to 5 Ma. Shortly after (4.9 to 2.9 Ma) large amount of rhyolitic lavas and ash flow tuffs (~500 km3) were emplaced in a WNW-ESE trending belt from Guadalajara to Compostela. Rhyolitic domes and flows (~430 km3) were emplaced also in the Pleistocene mostly between Tequila and Guadalajara with the late Pleistocene La Primavera caldera (~35 km3) as the sole explosive volcanic episodes. As a whole, silicic volcanism occurred from Late Miocene to the Pleistocene, and was dominated by dome and lava flows. Most rhyolites have high LILE/HFSE values and negative spikes at Nb, P and Ti. They also show the same Ba/Nb and K/Rb values and slightly higher Rb/Sr ratios as the 11-8 Ma basalts. Rhyolite Sr isotope data (87Sr/86Sr init = 0.70371 - 070598) are only slightly more radiogenic than the 11-8 basalts (87Sr/86Sr init = 0.70349-0.70410), whereas Nd isotope ratios are indistinguishable from them. Sr and Nd isotope ratios of the rhyolites are also similar to the crust nearby, indicating that they can be compatible either with fractional crystallization (FC) of basalts or with crust assimilation/melting. However REE contents are too low to be the result of basalt FC. Isotope and REE data can be successfully modelled with an initial crustal melt which subsequently undergone fractional crystallization of feldspar and quartz. Late Miocene slab detachment and subsequent slab rollback

  8. The Kenya rift axial gravity high: a re-interpretation

    Swain, C. J.


    Since KRISP 85 did not provide overwhelming evidence for the massive intrusion that was originally suggested to explain the axial gravity high yet did provide a velocity section for the upper crust along the axis of the Kenya Rift, it is appropriate to use this section to control a re-interpretation of the gravity anomalies. A 2 {1}/{2} D inversion procedure has been used to model a number of isostatic anomaly profiles between Lake Baringo and Suswa. There are too many unknowns and gravity station coverage is too sparse for the results to be unique. Nevertheless, certain conclusions can be drawn. One of those is that some relatively dense material exists within the basement all along the Rift axis, since the axial isostatic anomalies are positive even though they occur where there are several thousand metres of Cenozoic volcanics of relatively low density (inferred from their seismic velocity of 3.7-5.1 km/s). The dense material is envisaged as a zone of dyke injection and assigned a density of 2.75-2.76 g/cm 3 (corresponding to its 6.05 km/s velocity) compared to a normal basement density of 2.70 g/cm 3. It is assumed to extend down to 22 km—the top of the 7.1 km/s layer. The KRISP 85 line passed just east of Menengai, where the basement velocity increases to about 6.6 km/s over a distance of about 20 km. On an east-west gravity profile through Menengai there is a gravity high corresponding to this velocity increase which has been modelled as a basic intrusion (density 2.93 g/cm 3) underlying the caldera.

  9. Petrogenesis and origin of modern Ethiopian rift basalts: Constraints from isotope and trace element geochemistry

    Ayalew, D.; Jung, S.; Romer, R. L.; Kersten, F.; Pfänder, J. A.; Garbe-Schönberg, D.


    The source of continental rift-related basalts and their relation to rifting processes is a continuous matter of debate. We present major and trace element and Sr, Nd, Hf and Pb isotope data for axial rift basalts from eight volcanic centres (Ayelu, Hertali, Dofan, Fantale, Kone, Bosetti and Gedemsa, from NE to SW) in Afar and Main Ethiopian Rift (MER) to assess their source regions and their genetic relationships. These lavas have geochemical characteristics, i.e., a peak at Ba, Nb and troughs at K and Rb in primitive mantle-normalised multielement diagrams, which are consistent with predominant melting of an amphibole-bearing lithospheric mantle. However, the isotopic compositions for these lavas are heterogeneous (87Sr/86Sr = 0.70354-0.70431, 143Nd/144Nd = 0.51280-0.51294, 176Hf/177Hf = 0.28301-0.28315, 206Pb/204Pb = 18.48-19.31, 207Pb/204Pb = 15.53-15.62, 208Pb/204Pb = 38.61-39.06) and require various mantle reservoirs with distinctive isotopic signatures. The range of isotopic compositions requires the involvement of three distinct source components from the asthenospheric and veined lithospheric mantle. Progressive rifting leads to lithosperic thinning and upwelling of hot asthenospheric mantle, which induces melting of the veined lithospheric mantle. The trace element characteristics of the lavas are dominated by the vein material, which has a higher trace element content than the surrounding mantle. The isotopic composition of the vein material, however, is not very different from the ambient mantle, giving rise of apparent uncoupling of trace element and isotope constraints for the melt source. The uprising basaltic liquids in part inherit a lithospheric trace element signature, while their isotopic compositions are mostly unaffected due to short residence times within the lithosphere in context with progressive rifting and lithospheric thinning. Thus, the geochemical and isotope data are consistent with a multi-component source prevailing beneath the Afar

  10. The mode of rifting of the Tyrrhenian Sea

    Milia, Alfonsa; Torrente, Maurizio M.


    The back-arc evolution of the Tyrrhenian Sea has mainly been attributed to the roll-back towards the south-east of the subducting Ionian plate that could have provided the bulk of the space required for this extension. The Tyrrhenian Sea is a triangular basin characterized by two large bathyal basins (Vavilov and Marsili basins) that are covered by some hundred meters of sediments, and a number of peri- Tyrrhenian basins filled by thousands of meters of clastic and/or volcaniclastic sediments. The stratigraphic record of these basins offers an opportunity to study the timing and kinematics of the basin-forming faults that are relevant for the creation of a model on the opening of the Tyrrhenian Sea. Basin analysis was performed using interpretation of seismic reflection profiles and well logs. The interpretation of these data was made using seismic and sequence stratigraphy and structural geology in a GIS-dedicated environment. The sequence stratigraphy interpretation of the deepest wells were performed using discontinuities and trends in wireline log pattern. Systems tracts and transgressive-regressive cycles were identified in well log succession and seismic profiles. The sequence stratigraphy approach allows the identification of 4th-order depositional sequences (100 ka). The geologic evolution, in terms of age of basin formation, style of deformation, timing of activity of the fault bounding basins, tectonic subsidence, post-rift infill and volcanic activity, was analyzed for several peri-Tyrrhenian basins. The study reconstructed the three-dimensional architecture of the peri-Tyrrhenian basins and illustrated the link between the bathyal basin and the Tyrrhenian margin. We document that during the evolution of the Tyrrhenian region several basins opened contemporaneously with different direction of extension and a progressive change in rifting direction occurred along the Campania Margin. The mode of rifting of the Tyrrhenian Sea was characterized by different

  11. The Boring Volcanic Field of the Portland-Vancouver area, Oregon and Washington: tectonically anomalous forearc volcanism in an urban setting

    Evarts, Russell C.; Conrey, Richard M.; Fleck, Robert J.; Hagstrum, Jonathan T.; O'Connor, Jim; Dorsey, Rebecca; Madin, Ian P.


    More than 80 small volcanoes are scattered throughout the Portland-Vancouver metropolitan area of northwestern Oregon and southwestern Washington. These volcanoes constitute the Boring Volcanic Field, which is centered in the Neogene Portland Basin and merges to the east with coeval volcanic centers of the High Cascade volcanic arc. Although the character of volcanic activity is typical of many monogenetic volcanic fields, its tectonic setting is not, being located in the forearc of the Cascadia subduction system well trenchward of the volcanic-arc axis. The history and petrology of this anomalous volcanic field have been elucidated by a comprehensive program of geologic mapping, geochemistry, 40Ar/39Ar geochronology, and paleomag-netic studies. Volcanism began at 2.6 Ma with eruption of low-K tholeiite and related lavas in the southern part of the Portland Basin. At 1.6 Ma, following a hiatus of ~0.8 m.y., similar lavas erupted a few kilometers to the north, after which volcanism became widely dispersed, compositionally variable, and more or less continuous, with an average recurrence interval of 15,000 yr. The youngest centers, 50–130 ka, are found in the northern part of the field. Boring centers are generally monogenetic and mafic but a few larger edifices, ranging from basalt to low-SiO2 andesite, were also constructed. Low-K to high-K calc-alkaline compositions similar to those of the nearby volcanic arc dominate the field, but many centers erupted magmas that exhibit little influence of fluids derived from the subducting slab. The timing and compositional characteristics of Boring volcanism suggest a genetic relationship with late Neogene intra-arc rifting.

  12. Calibration of a transient transport model to tritium measurements in rivers and streams in the Western Lake Taupo catchment, New Zealand

    M. A. Gusyev


    Full Text Available Here we present a general approach of calibrating transient transport models to tritium concentrations in river waters developed for the MT3DMS/MODFLOW model of the Western Lake Taupo catchment, New Zealand. Tritium is a time-dependent tracer with radioactive half-life of 12.32 yr. In the transport model, the tritium input (measured in rain passes through the groundwater system, and the modelled tritium concentrations are compared to the measured tritium concentrations in the river outlets for the Waihaha, Whanganui, Whareroa, Kuratau and Omori river catchments from 2000–2007. For the Kuratau River, tritium was also measured between 1960 and 1970, which allowed us to fine-tune the transport model. In order to incorporate all surface flows from rivers to small streams, an 80 m uniform grid cell size was selected in the steady-state MODFLOW model for the model area of 1072 km2. The groundwater flow model was first calibrated to groundwater levels and stream flow observations. Then, the transport model was calibrated to the measured tritium concentrations in the river waters. The MT3DMS model results show good agreement with the measured tritium values in all five river catchments. Finally, the calibrated MT3DMS model is applied to simulate groundwater ages that are used to construct groundwater age distributions for the river catchments.

  13. Environmental impact of the 1.8 ka Taupo eruption, New Zealand: Landscape responses to a large-scale explosive rhyolite eruption

    Manville, V.; Segschneider, B.; Newton, E.; White, J. D. L.; Houghton, B. F.; Wilson, C. J. N.


    Large-scale ignimbrite eruptions from rhyolitic caldera volcanoes can trigger geologically instantaneous changes in sedimentary systems over huge areas by either burying existing environments or overloading them with vast quantities of unconsolidated particulate material. The post-eruption readjustment of the landscape to such perturbations is one of the most dramatic processes in physical sedimentology, exemplified here by the 1.8 ka Taupo eruption in the central North Island of New Zealand. This eruption generated voluminous fall deposits, then climaxed with emplacement of a c. 30 km 3 non-welded ignimbrite over a near-circular area of c. 20 000 km 2. Approximately 90% of the area, but retrenchment of single thread rivers and a return to pre-eruption gradients and bedloads years to decades later. Typically the modern profile of many streams and rivers follow closely their pre-eruption profiles, and incision and erosion is overwhelmingly confined to the deposits of the eruption itself. Although the general remobilisation pattern is similar for all impacted river systems, detailed studies of the Waikato, Rangitaiki, Mohaka, Ngaruroro and Whanganui catchments show that the relative timing and scale of each eruption response phase differs between each catchment. These reflect differences in catchment physiography and hydrology, and the volume and type of pyroclastic material deposited in each. Ultimately, the landscape response reflects the relative spatial distributions of, and the volumetric ratios between, the volumes of pyroclastic debris, water, and accommodation space in the basin (cf. Kataoka and Manville, this volume).

  14. Carboniferous Bimodal Volcanic Rocks and Their Plate Tectonic Setting,Hainan Island

    夏邦栋; 施光宇; 等


    The Carboniferous volcanic rocks in western Hainan Island consist of a series of oceanic tholeite and rhyoporphyrite,showing bimodal nature.Similar geochemical characters,in terms of abun-daces and relative rations of incompatible elements and REE and the REE patterns,between the basalt and continental rift-associated tholeiite indicate the occurrence of Late Paleozoic rifting in the area.The basaltic magma,with a low degree of evolution,was originated from deep mantle,show-ing contamination by low crustal material.The rhyolite is thought to be formed from partial melting of the continental crust by higher thermal flow in a rift environment rather than from fractional crystallization of a basaltic magma.

  15. Mode of rifting in magmatic-rich setting: Tectono-magmatic evolution of the Central Afar rift system

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


    Observation of deep structures related to break-up processes at volcanic passive margins (VPM) is often a troublesome exercise: thick pre- to syn-breakup seaward-dipping reflectors (SDR) usually mask the continent-ocean boundary and hide the syn-rift tectonic structures that accommodate crustal stretching and thinning. Some of the current challenges are about clarifying 1) if tectonic stretching fits the observed thinning and 2) what is the effect of continuous magma supply and re-thickening of the crust during extension from a rheological point of view? The Afar region in Ethiopia is an ideal natural laboratory to address those questions, as it is a highly magmatic rift that is probably close enough to breakup to present some characteristics of VPM. Moreover, the structures related to rifting since Oligocene are out-cropping, onshore and well preserved. In this contribution, we present new structural field data and lavas (U-Th/He) datings along a cross-section from the Ethiopian Plateau, through the marginal graben down to the Manda-Hararo active rift axis. We mapped continent-ward normal fault array affecting highly tilted trapp series unconformably overlain by tilted Miocene (25-7 Ma) acid series. The main extensional and necking/thinning event took place during the end of this Miocene magmatic episode. It is itself overlain by flat lying Pliocene series, including the Stratoid. Balanced cross-sections of those areas allow us to constrain a surface stretching factor of about 2.1-2.9. Those findings have the following implications: - High beta factor constrained from field observations is at odd with thinning factor of ~1.3 predicted by seismic and gravimetric studies. We propose that the continental crust in Central Afar has been re-thickened by the emplacement of underplated magma and SDR. - The deformation in Central Afar appears to be largely distributed through space and time. It has been accommodated in a 200-300 km wide strip being a diffuse incipient

  16. Volcanic signals in oceans

    Stenchikov, Georgiy L.


    Sulfate aerosols resulting from strong volcanic explosions last for 2–3 years in the lower stratosphere. Therefore it was traditionally believed that volcanic impacts produce mainly short-term, transient climate perturbations. However, the ocean integrates volcanic radiative cooling and responds over a wide range of time scales. The associated processes, especially ocean heat uptake, play a key role in ongoing climate change. However, they are not well constrained by observations, and attempts to simulate them in current climate models used for climate predictions yield a range of uncertainty. Volcanic impacts on the ocean provide an independent means of assessing these processes. This study focuses on quantification of the seasonal to multidecadal time scale response of the ocean to explosive volcanism. It employs the coupled climate model CM2.1, developed recently at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration\\'s Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory, to simulate the response to the 1991 Pinatubo and the 1815 Tambora eruptions, which were the largest in the 20th and 19th centuries, respectively. The simulated climate perturbations compare well with available observations for the Pinatubo period. The stronger Tambora forcing produces responses with higher signal-to-noise ratio. Volcanic cooling tends to strengthen the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation. Sea ice extent appears to be sensitive to volcanic forcing, especially during the warm season. Because of the extremely long relaxation time of ocean subsurface temperature and sea level, the perturbations caused by the Tambora eruption could have lasted well into the 20th century.

  17. Cenozoic Volcanism and Intraplate Subduction at the Northern Margin of the Tibetan Plateau



    Developed in the Mt.Kunlun orogenic belt at the northern margin of the Tibetan Plateau is an active Cenozoic volcanic zone which is more than 1000km in length and some ten to hundred kilometers in width.It extends east-westwards and is roughly parallet to the strike of Mt.Kunlun.The Cenozoic volcanic rocks are divided into the northern(N-)and southern(S-)subzones.Eruptions of volcanic lavas in the S-subzone are related to an initial rift zone within the north Qiangtang terrane,but the volcanic rocks in the N-subzone are relatively close to the contact zone between the Mt.Kunlun and the Tarim terrane.The space-time distribution,petrological and geochemical features can be explained by a model of southward intraplate subduction of the Tarim terrane.

  18. Earthquake and Volcanic Hazard Mitigation and Capacity Building in Sub-Saharan Africa

    Ayele, A.


    The East African Rift System (EARS) is a classic example of active continental rifting, and a natural laboratory setting to study initiation and early stage evolution of continental rifts. The EARS is at different stages of development that varies from relatively matured rift (16 mm/yr) in the Afar to a weakly extended Okavango Delta in the south with predicted opening velocity < 3 mm/yr. Recent studies in the region helped researchers to highlight the length and timescales of magmatism and faulting, the partitioning of strain between faulting and magmatism, and their implications for the development of along-axis segmentation. Although the human resource and instrument coverage is sparse in the continent, our understanding of rift processes and deep structure has improved in the last decade after the advent of space geodesy and broadband seismology. The recent major earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and mega dike intrusions that occurred along the EARS attracted several earth scientist teams across the globe. However, most African countries traversed by the rift do not have the full capacity to monitor and mitigate earthquake and volcanic hazards. Few monitoring facilities exist in some countries, and the data acquisition is rarely available in real-time for mitigation purpose. Many sub-Saharan Africa governments are currently focused on achieving the millennium development goals with massive infrastructure development scheme and urbanization while impending natural hazards of such nature are severely overlooked. Collaborations with overseas researchers and other joint efforts by the international community are opportunities to be used by African institutions to best utilize limited resources and to mitigate earthquake and volcano hazards.

  19. The volcanic and tectonic history of Enceladus

    Kargel, J.S.; Pozio, S.


    reaccretion of Enceladus. Another area of cratered plains has modified craters (e.g., Ali Baba and Aladdin), which some workers have explained by anomalous heat flow and viscous relaxation; lateral shear and shield-building volcanism also may have been important. A young rift-like structure (northern Samarkand Sulci) has few craters and a concentration of cracks or grabens and flattened, flooded, and rifted craters. Pit chains and cratered domes suggest explosive volcanism. Smooth plains may have formed by cryovolcanic equivalents of flood-basalt volcanism. Pure H2O would be difficult to extrude through an icy crust and is cosmochemically improbable as a cryovolcanic agent. Density relations rule out eutectic brine lavas on Enceladus, but NH3-H2O volcanism is possible. Current steady-state tidal dissipation may cause melting of ammonia hydrate at a depth of ???25 km if the crust is made of ammonia hydrate or ???100 km if it is made of water ice. ?? 1996 Academic Press, Inc.

  20. Large-scale volcanism associated with coronae on Venus - Implications for formation and evolution

    Roberts, Kari M.; Head, James W.


    Large-scale volcanism, in the form of areally extensive flow fields, is a previously unrecognized important aspect of the evolution of at least 41 percent of all coronae on Venus. The timing and scale of many coronae flow fields is consistent with an origin due to the arrival and pressure-release melting of material in the head of a mantle plume or diapir. The production of voluminous amounts of volcanism at some coronae is proposed to be the result of larger plume size and/or the intersection of mantle upwellings with regions of lithospheric extension and rifting.

  1. Volcanic Rocks and Features

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Volcanoes have contributed significantly to the formation of the surface of our planet. Volcanism produced the crust we live on and most of the air we breathe. The...

  2. A new perspective on evolution of the Baikal Rift

    Victor D. Mats


    The three-stage model of the rift history does not rule out the previous division into two major stages but rather extends its limits back into time as far as the Maastrichtian. Our model is consistent with geological, stratigraphic, structural, and geophysical data and provides further insights into the understanding of rifting in the Baikal region in particular and continental rifting in general.

  3. Molecular epidemiology of Rift Valley fever virus.

    Grobbelaar, Antoinette A; Weyer, Jacqueline; Leman, Patricia A; Kemp, Alan; Paweska, Janusz T; Swanepoel, Robert


    Phylogenetic relationships were examined for 198 Rift Valley fever virus isolates and 5 derived strains obtained from various sources in Saudi Arabia and 16 countries in Africa during a 67-year period (1944-2010). A maximum-likelihood tree prepared with sequence data for a 490-nt section of the Gn glycoprotein gene showed that 95 unique sequences sorted into 15 lineages. A 2010 isolate from a patient in South Africa potentially exposed to co-infection with live animal vaccine and wild virus was a reassortant. The potential influence of large-scale use of live animal vaccine on evolution of Rift Valley fever virus is discussed.

  4. Kinematics of the South Atlantic rift

    C. Heine


    Full Text Available The South Atlantic rift basin evolved as branch of a large Jurassic-Cretaceous intraplate rift zone between the African and South American plates during the final breakup of western Gondwana. While the relative motions between South America and Africa for post-breakup times are well resolved, many issues pertaining to the fit reconstruction and particular the relation between kinematics and lithosphere dynamics during pre-breakup remain unclear in currently published plate models. We have compiled and assimilated data from these intraplated rifts and constructed a revised plate kinematic model for the pre-breakup evolution of the South Atlantic. Based on structural restoration of the conjugate South Atlantic margins and intracontinental rift basins in Africa and South America, we achieve a tight fit reconstruction which eliminates the need for previously inferred large intracontinental shear zones, in particular in Patagonian South America. By quantitatively accounting for crustal deformation in the Central and West African rift zone, we have been able to indirectly construct the kinematic history of the pre-breakup evolution of the conjugate West African-Brazilian margins. Our model suggests a causal link between changes in extension direction and velocity during continental extension and the generation of marginal structures such as the enigmatic Pre-salt sag basin and the São Paulo High. We model an initial E–W directed extension between South America and Africa (fixed in present-day position at very low extensional velocities until Upper Hauterivian times (≈126 Ma when rift activity along in the equatorial Atlantic domain started to increase significantly. During this initial ≈17 Myr-long stretching episode the Pre-salt basin width on the conjugate Brazilian and West African margins is generated. An intermediate stage between 126.57 Ma and Base Aptian is characterised by strain localisation, rapid lithospheric weakening in the

  5. Chronology and origin of Au-Cu deposits related to Paleozoic intracontinental rifting in West Tianshan Mountains, NW China

    李华芹; 陈富文


    Located between the Tarim platform and Junggar massif, the West Tianshan intracontinental rift abuts against the China-Kazakhstan boundary in the west part, borders on the Yilianhabierga late Paleozoic relic ocean basin and the South Tianshan late Paleozoic ocean basin respectively in the northeast separated by the Aibi Lake fault and in the southeast by the fault along the southern margin of the Yili massif. During the development and after the close of the West Tianshan intracontinental rifting in the Carboniferous-Permian period, a series of nonferrous and precious metal mineralizations occurred with the Au-Cu deposits being the most important. Isotopic chronologic study of representative deposits of different types shows that gold-copper mineralization in the West Tianshan intracontinental rift zone mainly happened during the middle-late Hercynian Period, among which the Axi volcanic hydrothermal type gold deposit was formed during the Carboniferous with a fluid inclusion Rb-Sr isochron age of (339 ± 28) Ma; the Qiabukanzhuota quartzolite type gold deposit has a Rb-Sr isochron age of (312 ± 46) Ma; the Tawuerbieke porphyry type gold deposit has a Rb-Sr isochron age of (295 ± 16) Ma; the Jingbulak magmatic liquation Cu-Ni deposit and the Musizaote porphyry type Cu deposit have the forming ages of 300 Ma ± and 250 Ma ±, respectively. Analyses of crustal evolution and metallogenetic geological backgrounds of Au-Cu mineralizations in the studied area shows a close correlation with the rifting.

  6. Structural control of the Limagne Rift Fault on the Chaîne des Puys

    Van Wyk de Vries, B.; Tiu, G.; Mossoux, S.; Kervyn, M.; Lagmay, A. A.


    The close proximity of the Limagne Fault to the Chaîne des Puys (Massif Central, France) has been noted for a long time. In fact, if the Limagne fault had not raised the Chaîne relative to the Limagne Rift, to create a spectacular skyline of volcanoes, there would probably not have been so much interest in them. Early geologists such as Elie de Beaumont, Davy, Lyell, Murchison, and Von Humbolt, were as much concerned with explaining the escarpment by catastrophism or uniformitarianism, as they were with battling over neptunism and plutonism, or craters of elevation. The questions still stands as to what relationship the monogenetic volcanoes have to the fault, and perhaps: are the volcanoes monogenetic because of the fault? - seeing as just to the south of the rift, stand the Mont Dore-Sancy and Cantal stratovolcanoes. Considering the spatial-temporal relationship, it becomes clear that there are volcanoes on the fault, in the rift, and behind the footwall, but with different ages and configurations. Early volcanoes are cut by the faulting, showing a potential linkage, later volcanoes, as a whole, follow generally the main structural trend NS of the rift, but in detail group around a more NE-SW trend, that can be related to Hercynian structures, and to a major transfer fault linking the Limagne Rift to the Rhine Graben. These trends host some of the youngest volcanoes, and the fault appears to have been more recently active in this area, and the area of some damaging historic earthquakes. Considering the proximity of the fault as an influence in the monogenetic nature of the volcanism, more needs to be known about the state of faulting in the Tertiary in the Massif Central. However, the area of the Chaîne de Puys is highly heterogeneous, with complex associations of Hercynian and Tertiary structures, and thus the crustal structure may be compatible with multiple pathways, and thus a monogenetic tendency. In conclusion, there is a probably spatial and temporal

  7. Magmatic cycles pace tectonic and morphological expression of rifting (Afar depression, Ethiopia)

    Medynski, Sarah; Pik, Raphael; Burnard, Peter; Blard, Pierre-Henri


    Dyking and faulting at mid-oceanic ridges are concentrated in narrow axial volcanic zones due to focussing of both melt distribution and tectonic strain along the plate boundary. Due to the predominantly submarine location of oceanic ridges, the interplay between these processes remain poorly constrained in time and space. In this study, we use the Dabbahu-Manda Hararo (DMH) magmatic rift segment (MRS) (Afar, Ethiopia) to answers the long debated chicken-egg question about magmatic and tectonic processes in extensive context: which on comes first, and how those two processes interplay to finally form oceanic ridges? The DMH MRS is an oceanic ridge analogue and here we present quantitative slip rates on major and minor normal fault scarps for the past 40 kyr in the vicinity of a recent (September 2005) dike intrusion. Our data show that the long-term-vertical slip rates of faults that ruptured in 2005 are too low to explain the present rift topography and that the 2005 strain distribution is not the main stress accommodating mechanism in the DMH segment. Instead, we show that the axial valley topography is created by enhanced slip rates which occur only when the amount of magma available in magma reservoirs is limited, thus preventing dykes from reaching the surface. Our results suggest that development of the axial valley topography is regulated by the magma reservoir lifetime and, thus, to the magmatic cycles of replenishment/differentiation (< 100 ky). This implies that in the DMH rift system (with a magma supply typical of an intermediate spreading centre), significant topography of the axial rift valley is transient, and is expressed only when magma available in the reservoirs decreases. The absence of tilting on the rift margins over the last 200 kyr also suggests that amagmatic accommodation of extension is not required over this time period. Extension instead is accommodated by dykes injected laterally from multiple ephemeral reservoirs located along the DMH

  8. Inferring the effects of compositional boundary layers on crystal nucleation, growth textures, and mineral chemistry in natural volcanic tephras through submicron-resolution imaging

    Georg F. Zellmer


    Full Text Available Crystal nucleation and growth are first order processes captured in volcanic rocks and record important information about the rates of magmatic processes and chemical evolution of magmas during their ascent and eruption. We have studied glass-rich andesitic tephras from the Central Plateau of the Southern Taupo Volcanic Zone by electron- and ion-microbeam imaging techniques to investigate down to sub-micrometre scale the potential effects of compositional boundary layers (CBLs of melt around crystals on the nucleation and growth of mineral phases and the chemistry of crystal growth zones. We find that CBLs may influence the types of mineral phases nucleating and growing, and growth textures such as the development of swallowtails. The chemistry of the CBLs also has the capacity to trigger intermittent overgrowths of nanometre-scale bands of different phases in rapidly growing crystals, resulting in what we refer to as cryptic phase zoning. The existence of cryptic phase zoning has implications for the interpretation of microprobe compositional data, and the resulting inferences made on the conditions of magmatic evolution. Identification of cryptic phase zoning may in future lead to more accurate thermobarometric estimates and thus geospeedometric constraints. In future, a more quantitative characterization of CBL formation and its effects on crystal nucleation and growth may contribute to a better understanding of melt rheology and magma ascent processes at the onset of explosive volcanic eruptions, and will likely be of benefit to hazard mitigation efforts.

  9. Thermochronometric evidence for diffuse extension and two-phase rifting within the Central Arabian Margin of the Red Sea Rift

    Szymanski, E.; Stockli, D. F.; Johnson, P. R.; Hager, C.


    Numerical time-temperature models derived from a 2-D network of apatite and zircon (U-Th)/He ages reveal a three-stage thermotectonic history for the central Arabian rift flank (CARF) of the Red Sea Rift (RSR) system. The pre-rift Arabian-Nubian Shield existed as part of a passive Paleo-Tethyan margin until a widespread tectonic event at 350 Ma exhumed the proto-CARF to mid-to-upper crustal structural levels. After remaining thermally stable through the Mesozoic, the first phase of RSR extension began with a distinct rift pulse at 23 Ma when fault blocks across a 150 km wide area were exhumed along a diffuse set of rift-parallel faults from an average pre-rift flank depth of 1.7 ± 0.8 km. This rift onset age is mirrored in thermochronometric and sequence stratigraphic analyses elsewhere along the Red Sea Nubian and Arabian margins, confirming that rifting occurred concomitantly along the full Red Sea-Gulf of Suez rift system. Diffuse lithospheric extension lasted for 8 Myr before a second rift pulse at 15 Ma, coincident with regional stress realignment, transferred active faulting basinward toward the modern RSR axial trough. CARF time-temperature models indicate that the prevalent rift style during both RSR extensional phases was one of localized, structurally controlled block faulting and contemporaneous dike injection, not wholesale rift flank uplift.

  10. Volume estimation of rift-related magmatic features using seismic interpretation and 3D inversion of gravity data on the Guinea Plateau, West Africa

    Kardell, Dominik A.

    The two end-member concept of mantle plume-driven versus far field stress-driven continental rifting anticipates high volumes of magma emplaced close to the rift-initiating plume, whereas relatively low magmatic volumes are predicted at large distances from the plume where the rifting is thought to be driven by far field stresses. We test this concept at the Guinea Plateau, which represents the last area of separation between Africa and South America, by investigating for rift-related volumes of magmatism using borehole, 3D seismic, and gravity data to run structural 3D inversions in two different data areas. Despite our interpretation of igneous rocks spanning large areas of continental shelf covered by the available seismic surveys, the calculated volumes in the Guinea Plateau barely match the magmatic volumes of other magma-poor margins and thus endorse the aforementioned concept. While the volcanic units on the shelf seem to be characterized more dominantly by horizontally deposited extrusive volcanic flows distributed over larger areas, numerous paleo-seamounts pierce complexly deformed pre and syn-rift sedimentary units on the slope. As non-uniqueness is an omnipresent issue when using potential field data to model geologic features, our method faced some challenges in the areas exhibiting complicated geology. In this situation less rigid constraints were applied in the modeling process. The misfit issues were successfully addressed by filtering the frequency content of the gravity data according to the depth of the investigated geology. In this work, we classify and compare our volume estimates for rift-related magmatism between the Guinea Fracture Zone (FZ) and the Saint Paul's FZ while presenting the refinements applied to our modeling technique.

  11. From rifting to active spreading in the Lau Basin - Havre Trough backarc system (SW Pacific): Locking/unlocking induced by seamount chain subduction

    Ruellan, E.; Delteil, J.; Wright, I.; Matsumoto, T.


    Associated with Pacific-Australia plate convergence, the Lau Basin - Havre Trough is an active back-arc basin that has been opened since ˜5.5 Ma by rifting and southward propagating oceanic spreading. Current back-arc opening rates decrease from 159 mm yr-1 in the northern Lau Basin to 15 mm y-1 in the southern Havre Trough. Major tectonic changes occur at the transition between Havre Trough rifting and full oceanic spreading of the Eastern Lau Spreading Center (ELSC), where the oblique-to-trench, westward subducting Louisville Seamount Chain (LSC) sweeps southwards along the Tonga trench. New swath bathymetry, seismic reflection data, and limited rock sampling in this area constrain a tectonic and kinematic back-arc model that incorporates the effects of LSC subduction. The ELSC, which extends southward to 24°55'S, forms a deep rift valley propagating southward through older, rifted arc basement. Present-day seismicity and fresh and fractured pillow lavas at 23°42'S are consistent with rift valley neovolcanism. Conversely, the northern Havre Trough has low seismicity and rifted volcanic basement ridges trending 25-45° oblique to the basin axis consistent with low levels of extensional tectonism and volcanism. This latter structural fabric is interpreted as an early stage of rifting that is now "locked" due to compression on the arc exerted by LSC subduction, while in the Lau Basin such effects have passed as the LSC swept along the Tonga Trench. It is proposed that the Lau-Havre back-arc opening is controlled by tectonic constraints exerted at the limits of the system by the LSC subduction, which determines the southward migration of the Tonga Arc pole of rotation and associated Lau Basin opening. A discrete three-stage back-arc opening evolution is proposed, comprising: (1) an initial phase of back-arc rifting along the whole length of the plate boundary, beginning at ˜6-5 Ma; (2) a subsequent phase, mostly present in the southern part of the back-arc domain

  12. Diagnostic approaches for Rift Valley Fever

    Disease outbreaks caused by arthropod-borne animal viruses (arboviruses) resulting in significant livestock and economic losses world-wide appear to be increasing. Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus (RVFV) is an important arbovirus that causes lethal disease in cattle, camels, sheep and goats in Sub-Saha...

  13. Unexpected Rift Valley fever outbreak, northern Mauritania.

    El Mamy, Ahmed B O; Baba, Mohamed Ould; Barry, Yahya; Isselmou, Katia; Dia, Mamadou L; El Kory, Mohamed O B; Diop, Mariam; Lo, Modou Moustapha; Thiongane, Yaya; Bengoumi, Mohammed; Puech, Lilian; Plee, Ludovic; Claes, Filip; de La Rocque, Stephane; Doumbia, Baba


    During September-October 2010, an unprecedented outbreak of Rift Valley fever was reported in the northern Sahelian region of Mauritania after exceptionally heavy rainfall. Camels probably played a central role in the local amplification of the virus. We describe the main clinical signs (hemorrhagic fever, icterus, and nervous symptoms) observed during the outbreak.

  14. Reemergence of Rift Valley fever, Mauritania, 2010.

    Faye, Ousmane; Ba, Hampathé; Ba, Yamar; Freire, Caio C M; Faye, Oumar; Ndiaye, Oumar; Elgady, Isselmou O; Zanotto, Paolo M A; Diallo, Mawlouth; Sall, Amadou A


    A Rift Valley fever (RVF) outbreak in humans and animals occurred in Mauritania in 2010. Thirty cases of RVF in humans and 3 deaths were identified. RVFV isolates were recovered from humans, camels, sheep, goats, and Culex antennatus mosquitoes. Phylogenetic analysis of isolates indicated a virus origin from western Africa.

  15. Kinematics of the South Atlantic rift

    Heine, Christian; Müller, R Dietmar


    The South Atlantic rift basin evolved as branch of a large Jurassic-Cretaceous intraplate rift zone between the African and South American plates during the final breakup of western Gondwana. By quantitatively accounting for crustal deformation in the Central and West African rift zone, we indirectly construct the kinematic history of the pre-breakup evolution of the conjugate West African-Brazilian margins. Our model suggests a causal link between changes in extension direction and velocity during continental extension and the generation of marginal structures such as the enigmatic Pre-salt sag basin and the S\\~ao Paulo High. We model an initial E-W directed extension between South America and Africa (fixed in present-day position) at very low extensional velocities until Upper Hauterivian times ($\\approx$126 Ma) when rift activity along in the equatorial Atlantic domain started to increase significantly. During this initial $\\approx$17 Myr-long stretching episode the Pre-salt basin width on the conjugate Br...

  16. Groundwater links between Kenyan Rift Valley lakes

    Becht, Robert; Mwango, Fred; Muno, Fred Amstrong


    The series of lakes in the bottom of the Kenyan Rift valley are fed by rivers and springs. Based on the water balance, the relative positions determining the regional groundwater flow systems and the analysis of natural isotopes it can be shown that groundwater flows from lake Naivasha to lake Magadi, Elementeita, Nakuru and Bogoria.

  17. Rift Valley fever: A neglected zoonotic disease?

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a serious viral disease of animals and humans in Africa and the Middle East that is transmitted by mosquitoes. First isolated in Kenya during an outbreak in 1930, subsequent outbreaks have had a significant impact on animal and human health, as well as national economies. ...

  18. Molecular Rift: Virtual Reality for Drug Designers.

    Norrby, Magnus; Grebner, Christoph; Eriksson, Joakim; Boström, Jonas


    Recent advances in interaction design have created new ways to use computers. One example is the ability to create enhanced 3D environments that simulate physical presence in the real world--a virtual reality. This is relevant to drug discovery since molecular models are frequently used to obtain deeper understandings of, say, ligand-protein complexes. We have developed a tool (Molecular Rift), which creates a virtual reality environment steered with hand movements. Oculus Rift, a head-mounted display, is used to create the virtual settings. The program is controlled by gesture-recognition, using the gaming sensor MS Kinect v2, eliminating the need for standard input devices. The Open Babel toolkit was integrated to provide access to powerful cheminformatics functions. Molecular Rift was developed with a focus on usability, including iterative test-group evaluations. We conclude with reflections on virtual reality's future capabilities in chemistry and education. Molecular Rift is open source and can be downloaded from GitHub.

  19. Rifting Thick Lithosphere - Canning Basin, Western Australia

    Czarnota, Karol; White, Nicky


    The subsidence histories and architecture of most, but not all, rift basins are elegantly explained by extension of ~120 km thick lithosphere followed by thermal re-thickening of the lithospheric mantle to its pre-rift thickness. Although this well-established model underpins most basin analysis, it is unclear whether the model explains the subsidence of rift basins developed over substantially thick lithosphere (as imaged by seismic tomography beneath substantial portions of the continents). The Canning Basin of Western Australia is an example where a rift basin putatively overlies lithosphere ≥180 km thick, imaged using shear wave tomography. Subsidence modelling in this study shows that the entire subsidence history of the Canning Basin is adequately explained by mild Ordovician extension (β≈1.2) of ~120 km thick lithosphere followed by post-rift thermal subsidence. This is consistent with the established model, described above, albeit with perturbations due to transient dynamic topography support which are expressed as basin-wide unconformities. In contrast the Canning Basin reveals an almost continuous period of normal faulting between the Ordovician and Carboniferous (βCanning Basin to rifting of thick lithosphere beneath the eastern part, verified by the presence of ~20 Ma diamond-bearing lamproites intruded into the basin depocentre. In order to account for the observed subsidence, at standard crustal densities, the lithospheric mantle is required to be depleted in density by 50-70 kg m-3, which is in line with estimates derived from modelling rare-earth element concentrations of the ~20 Ma lamproites and global isostatic considerations. Together, these results suggest that thick lithosphere thinned to > 120 km is thermally stable and is not accompanied by post-rift thermal subsidence driven by thermal re-thickening of the lithospheric mantle. Our results show that variations in lithospheric thickness place a fundamental control on basin architecture

  20. Volcanic hazards to airports

    Guffanti, M.; Mayberry, G.C.; Casadevall, T.J.; Wunderman, R.


    Volcanic activity has caused significant hazards to numerous airports worldwide, with local to far-ranging effects on travelers and commerce. Analysis of a new compilation of incidents of airports impacted by volcanic activity from 1944 through 2006 reveals that, at a minimum, 101 airports in 28 countries were affected on 171 occasions by eruptions at 46 volcanoes. Since 1980, five airports per year on average have been affected by volcanic activity, which indicates that volcanic hazards to airports are not rare on a worldwide basis. The main hazard to airports is ashfall, with accumulations of only a few millimeters sufficient to force temporary closures of some airports. A substantial portion of incidents has been caused by ash in airspace in the vicinity of airports, without accumulation of ash on the ground. On a few occasions, airports have been impacted by hazards other than ash (pyroclastic flow, lava flow, gas emission, and phreatic explosion). Several airports have been affected repeatedly by volcanic hazards. Four airports have been affected the most often and likely will continue to be among the most vulnerable owing to continued nearby volcanic activity: Fontanarossa International Airport in Catania, Italy; Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport in Alaska, USA; Mariscal Sucre International Airport in Quito, Ecuador; and Tokua Airport in Kokopo, Papua New Guinea. The USA has the most airports affected by volcanic activity (17) on the most occasions (33) and hosts the second highest number of volcanoes that have caused the disruptions (5, after Indonesia with 7). One-fifth of the affected airports are within 30 km of the source volcanoes, approximately half are located within 150 km of the source volcanoes, and about three-quarters are within 300 km; nearly one-fifth are located more than 500 km away from the source volcanoes. The volcanoes that have caused the most impacts are Soufriere Hills on the island of Montserrat in the British West Indies

  1. Submarine volcanoes of the Kolumbo volcanic zone NE of Santorini Caldera, Greece

    Nomikou, P.; Carey, S.; Papanikolaou, D.; Croff Bell, K.; Sakellariou, D.; Alexandri, M.; Bejelou, K.


    The seafloor northeast of Santorini volcano in Greece consists of a small, elongated rifted basin that has been the site of recent submarine volcanism. This area lies within the Cyclades back-arc region of the present Hellenic subduction zone where the seafloor of the eastern Mediterranean Sea is descending beneath the Aegean microplate. The Cycladic region and the Aegean Sea as a whole are known to be regions of north-south back-arc extension and thinning of continental crust. Nineteen submarine volcanic cones occur within this small rift zone, the largest of these being Kolumbo which last erupted explosively in 1650 AD, causing significant damage and fatalities on the nearby island of Santorini. Previous SEABEAM mapping and seismic studies from HCMR indicate that many of the smaller v'olcanic cones have been built above the present seafloor, while others are partly buried, indicating a range of ages for the activity along this volcanic line. None of the cones to the northeast of Kolumbo had been explored in detail prior to a cruise of the E/V Nautilus (NA007) in August 2010. The ROV Hercules was used to explore the slopes, summits and craters of 17 of the 19 centers identified on multibeam maps of the area. Water depths of the submarine volcano's summits ranged from 18 to 450 m. In general, the domes/craters northeast of Kolumbo were sediment covered and showed little evidence of recent volcanic activity. Outcrops of volcanic rock were found in the crater walls and slopes of some of the cones but they typically consisted of volcanic fragments of pumice and lava that have been cemented together by biological activity, indicative of the lack of recent eruptions. Geochemical analysis of samples collected on the northeast cones showed evidence of low temperature hydrothermal circulation on the summit and upper flanks in the form of stream-like manganese precipitates emanating from pits and fractures.

  2. Analogy between natural gas found in lakes of rift valley system of east Africa and its allied gas in Japan

    Fukuta, O.


    The Afar triangle in northeastern Ethiopia is where the Red Sea rift, the Carlsberg Ridge of the Indian Ocean, and the Rift Valley system of east Africa meet. In 1979, J. Welhan and H. Craig reported that hydrothermal vents at 21/sup 0/N, on the East Pacific Rise, are discharging turbid waters. Mixtures of the plumes with ambient seawater contain significant amounts of dissolved H/sub 2/ and CH/sub 4/ as well as mantel-derived /sup 3/He-rich helium. The /sup 3/He//sup 4/He ratios of rock samples obtained earlier by J. Lupton and H. Craig from the Mid-Oceanic Ridge, including the Mid-Atlantic Ridge and the east Pacific Rise, are extremely high at an almost constant value of (1.3 +/- 0.2) x 10/sup -5/, which they defined as the MOR-type helium. However, the deep brines of the Red Sea contain about 1,000 times more methane than normal seawater does, according to Gold and Soter in 1980. Much evidence leads us to believe that large amounts of /sup 3/He-rich helium-bearing natural gas have been gushing out in many places of the Rift Valley of east Africa for a long time. In 1980, Gold and Soter stated that Lake Kivu, which occupies part of the East African rift valley, contains 50 million tons of dissolved methane for which there is no adequate microbial source. The Japanese Islands began to separate from the Asian continent during the early Miocene. The early Miocene was characterized by intensive volcanic activity that produced large amounts of pyroclastics and other volcanic rocks, generally called green tuff in Japan. It has been suggested that oil and gas in green tuff is derived from the upper mantle.

  3. Peripheral structures of the Rio Grande Rift in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, around the Colorado-New Mexico border

    Fridrich, C. J.; Workman, J. B.


    Recently active faults of the Rio Grande rift near the Colorado-New Mexico border are almost entirely limited to the San Luis basin. In contrast, the early (≈26 to ≈10 Ma) structure of the rift in this area is significantly broader. A wide zone of abandoned, peripheral extensional structures is exposed on the eastern flank of the San Luis basin—in the west half of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, known in this area as the southern Culebra and northern Taos Ranges. New detailed mapping shows that the eastern limit of the zone of early peripheral extension is marked by an aligned series of north-trending grabens, including the Devil’s Park, Valle Vidal, and Moreno Valley basins. Master faults of these intermontaine basins are partly localized along, and evidently reactivated moderate- to high-angle Laramide (≈70 to ≈40 Ma) reverse faults of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. Between these grabens and the San Luis basin lies a structural zone that varies in style from block faulting, in the north, to more closely spaced tilted-domino-style faulting in the Latir volcanic field, to the south. Additional early rift structures include several long northwest-striking faults, the largest of which are interpreted to have accommodated significant right-lateral strike-slip, based on abrupt southwestward increase in the magnitude of extension across them. These faults evidently transferred strain from the axial part of the rift into the zone of early peripheral extension, and accommodated lateral changes in structural style. Throughout the area of early peripheral extension, there is a correlation between the magnitude of local volcanism and the degree of extension; however, it is unclear if extension drove volcanism—via mantle upwelling, or if extension was maximized where the crust was weakest, owing to the presence of magma and hot rock at shallow depths.

  4. Linking deep earth to surface processes in the Woodlark Rift of Papua New Guinea; a framework for understanding (U)HP exhumation globally

    Baldwin, S.; Fitzgerald, P. G.; Bermudez, M. A.; Webb, L. E.; Moucha, R.; Miller, S. R.; Catalano, J. P.; Zirakparvar, N. A.


    During the Cenozoic the leading edge of the AUS plate was subducted northwards beneath the forearc of oceanic island arc(s), during its north-northeast passage over a complexly structured mantle. Sediments and basalts were metamorphosed under (U)HP conditions to form blueschists and eclogites, and lower-grade metamorphic rocks that are now exposed throughout New Guinea, primarily south of, and structurally beneath, obducted ophiolites. In the Woodlark Rift the youngest (2-8 Ma) (U)HP rocks on Earth were exhumed from mantle depths (>90 km) at plate tectonic rates (1-4 cm yr-1) west of the active Woodlark Basin seafloor spreading center rift tip. How these (U)HP rocks were exhumed is the focus of an ongoing collaborative multidisciplinary project which aims to understand linkages between deep earth, plate tectonic, and surface processes in the Woodlark Rift. Since the Late Miocene, a regionally extensive subduction complex was exhumed on the southern-rifted margin of the Woodlark Basin (Pocklington Rise), and in the lower plates of the D'Entrecasteaux, Misima, and Dayman dome metamorphic core complexes. Late Miocene-to-Pliocene metamorphism of sediments and basalts preceded diachronous exhumation from east to west, in the same direction as rift propagation. In contrast the northern-rifted margin (Woodlark Rise) comprises mid-Miocene to Pliocene volcanic flows and pyroclastic material ranging in composition from basalt to rhyolite, with capping limestone. The age of volcanic rocks on the northern-rifted margin also youngs from east to west. Pliocene to active syn-rift volcanism on the Woodlark Rise and in the D'Entrecasteaux Islands is synchronous with (U)HP exhumation, and results from decompression melting of a relict mantle wedge. As lithospheric extension proceeds, volcanic compositions evolve from subduction zone geochemical signatures (i.e., negative HFSE anomalies) toward E-MORB. Preliminary mantle convection models investigate large-scale background mantle

  5. Volcanic hazards on the Island of Hawaii

    Mullineaux, Donal Ray; Peterson, Donald W.


    Volcanic hazards on the Island of Hawaii have been determined to be chiefly products of eruptions: lava flows, falling fragments, gases, and particle-and-gas clouds. Falling fragments and particle-and-gas clouds can be substantial hazards to life, but they are relatively rare. Lava flows are the chief hazard to property; they are frequent and cover broad areas. Rupture, subsidence, earthquakes, and sea waves (tsunamis) caused by eruptions are minor hazards; those same events caused by large-scale crustal movements, however, are major hazards to both life and property. Volcanic hazards are greatest on Mauna Loa and Kilauea, and the risk is highest along the rift zones of those volcanoes. The hazards are progressively less severe on Hualalai, Mauna Kea, and Kohala volcanoes. Some risk from earthquakes extends across the entire island, and the risk from tsunamis is high all along the coast. The island has been divided into geographic zones of different relative risk for each volcanic hazard, and for all those hazards combined. Each zone is assigned a relative risk for that area as a whole; the degree of risk varies within the zones, however, and in some of them the risk decreases gradationally across the entire zone. Moreover, the risk in one zone may be locally as great or greater than that at some points in the zone of next higher overall risk. Nevertheless, the zones can be highly useful for land-use planning. Planning decisions to which the report is particularly applicable include the selection of kinds of structures and kinds of land use that are appropriate for the severity and types of hazards present. For example, construction of buildings that can resist a lava flow is generally not feasible, but it is both feasible and desirable to build structures that can resist falling rock fragments, earthquakes, and tsunamis in areas where risk from those hazards is relatively high. The report can also be used to select sites where overall risk is relatively low, to

  6. Geochemistry and petrogenesis of extension-related magmas close to the volcanic front of the central part of the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt

    Verma, Surendra P.; Torres-Sánchez, Darío; Velasco-Tapia, Fernando; Subramanyam, K. S. V.; Manikyamba, C.; Bhutani, Rajneesh


    New geochemical data for 23 samples from the Sierra de Chichinautzin (SCN) and Sierra Santa Catarina (SSC) located at the volcanic front of the central part of the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt were combined with the published data on 580 samples from the SCN to explore the origin and evolution of the Quaternary trachybasalt and basalt to andesite and dacite. The rare-earth element concentrations for the evolved intermediate and acid rocks are lower than those for the more basic varieties, implying that the evolved magmas cannot be generated by a simple fractional crystallisation process without crustal assimilation. The size of the Nb and Ta negative anomalies increases from basic to acid, which is similar to the behaviour of most continental rifts and extension-related areas, but contrasts from all island and continental arcs. The multidimensional tectonomagmatic diagrams indicate a continental rift setting from basic and alkaline intermediate magmas. The SSC represents a new site of within-plate alkaline magmas discovered in this work, which complements the earlier interpretation of the adjacent SCN as a manifestation of continental rift or extension-related magmatism.

  7. Precambrian Lunar Volcanic Protolife

    Jack Green


    Full Text Available Five representative terrestrial analogs of lunar craters are detailed relevant to Precambrian fumarolic activity. Fumarolic fluids contain the ingredients for protolife. Energy sources to derive formaldehyde, amino acids and related compounds could be by flow charging, charge separation and volcanic shock. With no photodecomposition in shadow, most fumarolic fluids at 40 K would persist over geologically long time periods. Relatively abundant tungsten would permit creation of critical enzymes, Fischer-Tropsch reactions could form polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and soluble volcanic polyphosphates would enable assembly of nucleic acids. Fumarolic stimuli factors are described. Orbital and lander sensors specific to protolife exploration including combined Raman/laser-induced breakdown spectrocsopy are evaluated.

  8. Status of volcanic hazard studies for the Nevada Nuclear Waste Storage Investigations. Volume II

    Crowe, B.M.; Wohletz, K.H.; Vaniman, D.T.; Gladney, E.; Bower, N.


    Volcanic hazard investigations during FY 1984 focused on five topics: the emplacement mechanism of shallow basalt intrusions, geochemical trends through time for volcanic fields of the Death Valley-Pancake Range volcanic zone, the possibility of bimodal basalt-rhyolite volcanism, the age and process of enrichment for incompatible elements in young basalts of the Nevada Test Site (NTS) region, and the possibility of hydrovolcanic activity. The stress regime of Yucca Mountain may favor formation of shallow basalt intrusions. However, combined field and drill-hole studies suggest shallow basalt intrusions are rare in the geologic record of the southern Great Basin. The geochemical patterns of basaltic volcanism through time in the NTS region provide no evidence for evolution toward a large-volume volcanic field or increases in future rates of volcanism. Existing data are consistent with a declining volcanic system comparable to the late stages of the southern Death Valley volcanic field. The hazards of bimodal volcanism in this area are judged to be low. The source of a 6-Myr pumice discovered in alluvial deposits of Crater Flat has not been found. Geochemical studies show that the enrichment of trace elements in the younger rift basalts must be related to an enrichment of their mantle source rocks. This geochemical enrichment event, which may have been metasomatic alteration, predates the basalts of the silicic episode and is, therefore, not a young event. Studies of crater dimensions of hydrovolcanic landforms indicate that the worst case scenario (exhumation of a repository at Yucca Mountain by hydrovolcanic explosions) is unlikely. Theoretical models of melt-water vapor explosions, particularly the thermal detonation model, suggest hydrovolcanic explosion are possible at Yucca Mountain. 80 refs., 21 figs., 5 tabs.

  9. Relations between tectonics and sedimentation along the Eastern Sardinian margin (Western Tyrrhenian Sea) : from rifting to reactivation

    Gaullier, Virginie; Chanier, Frank; Vendeville, Bruno; Lymer, Gaël; Maillard, Agnès; Thinon, Isabelle; Lofi, Johanna; Sage, Françoise; Giresse, Pierre; Bassetti, Maria-Angela


    salt and its Late Messinian and Early Pliocene brittle overburden. "METYSAR" fieldwork onshore was conducted in the Orosei region and showed that the main present-day Cedrino river follows the trend of a paleo-valley that cuts through the underlying granitic basement and alterites. These deposits, along with the basement, were likely eroded during Messinian times, then reworked during a marine transgression. Micro-fauna in these fine-grained marine sediments are of Upper Pliocene age. The strata dip by 20° to 30° and trend NNE-SSW, a direction which is sub-parallel to the main tectonic structures involved in the rifting of the margin. The tilted Pliocene strata were overlain by volcanic flows, some dating from Upper Pliocene time. Field mapping has evidenced that there was a paleo-topographic relief, trending NNE-SSW, that controlled the sediment deposition. These results indicate that the post-Messinian tectonic activity, which is also visible offshore, controlled the sedimentary architecture and the paleogeography of this area. Onshore, there are signs of neither Lower-Pliocene marine deposits nor Gilbert deltas. The absence of such sedimentary edifices, which are characteristic of the Pliocene refilling of the Mediterranean basin are clues about significant post-rift vertical movements in the Tyrrhenian sea.

  10. Mesoclimatic imprints on palaeoclimate records from rift graben sediments: Implications from stable and radiogenic isotope data from mammalian tooth enamel

    Brachert, Thomas; Brügmann, Gerhard; Mertz, Dieter F.; Kullmer, Ottmar; Schrenk, Friedemann; Ssemmanda, Immaculate; Taubald, Herbert


    within the habitat of the hippopotamids and implies increasing evaporation of lake waters in the Albertine Rift. The variation in the Sr isotopic composition documents variable Sr fluxes from the Albertine Rift catchments composed of radiogenic Archaean, less radiogenic Proterozoic crustal rocks and unradiogenic Neogene mantle derived volcanic rocks. Lake Albert is located in Archaean rocks. Therefore, the most radiogenic strontium isotopic composition at 2 Ma implies contributions of meteoric waters draining dominantly Archaean crust and maximum isolation of the lake. This is consistent with its maximum evaporation state reflected in 18O/16O values and vegetation change inferred from 13C/12C. Our data show that mesoclimate variation induced by graben formation and rift shoulder uplift must be taken into account when interpreting rift floor related climate archives such as palaeosols.

  11. Depositional model of Permian Luodianian volcanic island and its impact on the distribution of fusulinid assemblage in southern Qinghai, Northwest China

    NIU ZhiJun; XU AnWu; WANG JianXiong; DUAN QiFa; ZHAO XiaoMing; YAO HuaZhou


    Pan-riftizational tectonic activity reached climax at Luodianian (Permian) in the East Tethyan Domain,Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. Because of eruptive volcanics and influence of terrigenous materials, a complex volcanic-sedimentary landform formed on the sea floor in southern Qinghai. Four sedimentary facies types were recognized based on detailed field mapping. Spatially, platform facies volcanic-limestone type was located at the center belt approximately trending NWW, surrounded by shallow water slope facies tuff/tuffite type at the two flanks and deep water slope facies breccia/calcirudite at the most outside. The depression facies sandstone-mudstone type, which comprised mainly mudstone, deposited between volcanic islands (platform facies volcanic-limestone type). Based on the field mapping and stratigraphic section data, seven rift-related sedimentary facies were recognized and a depositional model for volcanic island was proposed. It is revealed that some volcanic island chain formed quickly and intermittently in the Qamdo Block during violent eruption, and small carbonate reef, shoal,platform occurred above or on edge of volcanic island, and some slope sedimentary facies surrounded volcano island chain during dormant period of volcanic activities. Three types of fusulinid assemblages were distinguished in the carbonate rocks, which deposited in varied positions of a palaeo-volcanic island: (1) Misellina- Schwagerina assemblage occurred above or on edge of volcanic island, (2) Parafusulina assemblage was located at restricted depression facies among volcanic islands or carbonate platform, and (3) the reworked Pseudofusulina-Schwagerina assemblage occurred at slope facies near margin of volcanic island, which originally deposited in the shallow-water carbonate platform, then collapsed along the volcanic island margin with fusulinid-bearing grain-supported carbonate conglomerate or calcirudite, and finally re-deposited on the deeper slope. The sedimentary sequence

  12. Depositional model of Permian Luodianian volcanic island and its impact on the distribution of fusulinid assemblage in southern Qinghai,Northwest China


    Pan-riftizational tectonic activity reached climax at Luodianian (Permian) in the East Tethyan Domain, Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. Because of eruptive volcanics and influence of terrigenous materials, a complex volcanic-sedimentary landform formed on the sea floor in southern Qinghai. Four sedimentary facies types were recognized based on detailed field mapping. Spatially, platform facies volcanic-limestone type was located at the center belt approximately trending NWW, surrounded by shallow water slope facies tuff/tuffite type at the two flanks and deep water slope facies breccia/calcirudite at the most outside. The depression facies sandstone-mudstone type, which comprised mainly mudstone, de-posited between volcanic islands (platform facies volcanic-limestone type). Based on the field map-ping and stratigraphic section data, seven rift-related sedimentary facies were recognized and a depo-sitional model for volcanic island was proposed. It is revealed that some volcanic island chain formed quickly and intermittently in the Qamdo Block during violent eruption, and small carbonate reef, shoal, platform occurred above or on edge of volcanic island, and some slope sedimentary facies surrounded volcano island chain during dormant period of volcanic activities. Three types of fusulinid assemblages were distinguished in the carbonate rocks, which deposited in varied positions of a palaeo-volcanic island: (1) Misellina-Schwagerina assemblage occurred above or on edge of volcanic island, (2) Para-fusulina assemblage was located at restricted depression facies among volcanic islands or carbonate platform, and (3) the reworked Pseudofusulina-Schwagerina assemblage occurred at slope facies near margin of volcanic island, which originally deposited in the shallow-water carbonate platform, then collapsed along the volcanic island margin with fusulinid-bearing grain-supported carbonate con-glomerate or calcirudite, and finally re-deposited on the deeper slope. The sedimentary

  13. Seismicity of the rocky mountains and Rio Grande Rift from the EarthScope Transportable Array and CREST temporary seismic networks, 2008-2010

    Nakai, J. S.; Sheehan, A. F.; Bilek, S. L.


    We developed a catalog of small magnitude (ML -0.1 to 4.7) seismicity across Colorado and New Mexico from the EarthScope USArray Transportable Array and CREST (Colorado Rocky Mountains Experiment and Seismic Transects) seismic networks from 2008 to 2010 to characterize active deformation in the Rio Grande Rift. We recorded over 900 earthquakes in the Rio Grande Rift region, not including induced earthquakes and mine blasts, and find that the rift is actively deforming both broadly and in distinct regions. Seismic events that are likely induced, mostly in the Raton Basin, make up 66% of the catalog (1837 earthquakes). Neogene faults in the northern rift in north central Colorado are seismically active in the North Park Basin and northwestern Colorado. The central rift from the San Luis Basin (southern Colorado) to south of the Socorro Magma Body is the most seismically active rift region, and seismicity delineates the deformation in the Colorado Plateau transition zone, which is spatially correlated with volcanic vents, dikes, and faults within the western Jemez Lineament. The eastern Jemez Lineament is nearly aseismic and surrounded by a halo of seismicity culminating in boundaries defined by recent moderate (Mw 3.9 and Mw 3.3) earthquakes. The southern rift is characterized by diffuse seismicity in Texas and Mexico. This study provides an updated seismic catalog built with uniformity in seismometer coverage and low epicentral uncertainties ( 2 km) that allows for regional evaluation of seismicity. During this time period, clusters of seismicity and moderate magnitude earthquakes characterize deformation in a low-strain rate extensional environment.

  14. Mapping Precambrian Basement Fabric with Magnetic Data in the Karonga Basin Area and its Control on the Development of the Malawi Rift.

    Johnson, T.; Abdelsalam, M. G.; Atekwana, E. A.; Chindandali, P. R. N.; Clappe, B.; Laó-Dávila, D. A.; Dawson, S.; Hull, C. D.; Nyalugwe, V.; Salima, J.


    The Malawi Rift forms the southern termination of the western branch of the East African Rift System. It is suggested that it propagates from the Rungwe Volcanic Province in the north for ~700 km into Mozambique in the south. The northern portion of the Malawi Rift is dominated by the Mesoproterozoic basement rocks of the Ubendian-Usagaran belts to the north and west and the Irumide Belt in the south. The Mugese shear zone (MSZ) forms the boundary between the Ubendian-Usagaran and Irumide Belts. We used magnetic data to determine the relationship between the geology of the nascent Malawi Rift and the strong magnetic fabric observed in the Mugese shear zone from aeromagnetic maps. We integrated the aeromagnetic data with ground magnetic data acquired along two W-E transects using a cesium vapor magnetometer at a nominal station spacing of 500 m. We also acquired kinematic data (strike and dip) on exposed basement geology and Karoo sediments. Both transects extend from the uplifted basement areas cutting across the MSZ into the rift floor sediments. Our results show that the MSZ is characterized by a prominent WNW-ESE magnetic anomaly that is parallel to the basement fabric north of the town of Karonga but changes orientation to NNW-SSE south of Karonga. This shear zone is composed of gneisses in amphibolite to granulite facies that are steeply dipping (50-80°) to the west. The strong magnetization and magnetic lineation of the MSZ results from alternating light and dark colored gneissic bands. This magnetization is strongest in unweathered basement rocks and lowest in weathered basement rocks and Karoo sediments. The orientation of the strong magnetic fabric of the Mugese shear zone may play an important role on the accommodation of strain within the rift basin. Detailed mapping of the magnetic fabric can improve our understanding of the formation of faults in the nascent Malawi Rift.

  15. Neogene seismites and seismic volcanic rocks in the Linqu area, Shandong Province, E China

    Tian H.S.


    Full Text Available The Yishu Fault Zone runs through the centre of Shandong Province (E China; it is a deep-seated large fault system that still is active. Two volcanic faulted basins (the Shanwang and Linqu Basins in the Linqu area, west of the fault zone, are exposed to rifting, which process is accompanied by a series of tectonic and volcanic earthquakes with a magnitude of 5-8. Lacustrine sediments in the basins were affected by these earthquakes so that seismites with a variety of soft-sediment deformation structures originated. The seismites form part of the Shanwang Formation of the Linqu Group. Semi-consolidated fluvial conglomerates became deformed in a brittle way; these seismites are present at the base of the Yaoshan Formation. Intense earthquakes triggered by volcanic activity left their traces in the form of seismic volcanic rocks associated with liquefied-sand veins in the basalt/sand intercalations at the base of the Yaoshan Formation. These palaeo-earthquake records are dated around 14-10 Ma; they are responses to the intense tectonic extension and the basin rifting in this area and even the activity of the Yishu Fault Zone in the Himalayan tectonic cycle.

  16. The Role of Grain Size and Shape on the Electrical Conductivity of Volcanic Ash

    Woods, T.; Genareau, K. D.; Cloer, S.


    Volcanic lightning is a common, yet understudied, phenomenon. The exact mechanisms of electric charge generation and transmission in explosive eruption plumes are poorly understood. Ash is a probable charge carrier, and thus, the physical properties of ash may factor into charge generation and transmission. Specifically, the shape and size of ash grains, volatiles bound within the grains, and the efficiency of grains to act as ice nuclei may be contributing factors. To examine the relationship between conductivity and grain size/shape, this research compares conductivity measurements to grain size distribution and shape from five minimally processed ash samples collected from explosive eruptions in Alaska, U.S.A. (Katmai, 1912; Crater Peak, 1992; Augustine, 2006; Okmok, 2008; Redoubt, 2009) that produced volcanic lightning and a set of homogenized (with respect to grain size and shape) ash samples from Lathrop Wells (Nevada, U.S.A.), Taupo (New Zealand), and the Valles Caldera (New Mexico, U.S.A.). Grain size distribution was measured using a laser diffractometer particle size analyzer and grain shapes (aspect ratios, concavity indices) were characterized using backscattered electron images that were processed with ImageJ freeware. The resistance of minimally compressed samples was measured using a current amplifier and converted to conductivity. A general effective media (GEM) equation was then applied using the assumption that the grains are oblate ellipsoids under the influence of minimal compaction. Preliminary analyses suggest that compaction, and therefore shape and contact points, controls ash conductivity and not bulk composition, as homogenized samples provide variable resistance measurements from 1.6 x 10-3 to 9.9 x 10-1 S/m. Non-homogenized Alaskan samples are hypothesized to have higher concavity indices and conductivities when compared to the homogenized samples, due to wider variations in grain size and shape, and these data will be presented.

  17. Lung problems and volcanic smog

    ... releases gases into the atmosphere. Volcanic smog can irritate the lungs and make existing lung problems worse. ... deep into the lungs. Breathing in volcanic smog irritates the lungs and mucus membranes. It can affect ...

  18. Plate Tectonic Setting and Eruptive Characteristics of the K—rich Volcanic Belt in HeilingJiang Province,Northeast China

    邱家骧; 吴志勤; 等


    Various lines of geological,geophysical and geochemical evidence indicate that the K-rich volcanic belt in Northeast China as represented by the volcanic groups at Wudalianchi,Erkeshan and Kelo was developed,in terms of plate tectonics,in a rift valley system within the continental plate,The volcanic material includes effusive lavas and explosive pyroclastics whose characteristics and flowing/accumulation mechanisms were studied in detail,The distribution of pyroclastics shows that the eruption is of Strombolian type with increasing intensity towards the late stages.

  19. Hydrothermal Petroleum in Active Continental Rift: Lake Chapala, Western Mexico, Initial Results.

    Zarate-del Valle, P. F.; Simoneit, B. R.; Ramirez-Sanchez, H. U.


    Lake Chapala in western Mexico is located partially in the Citala Rift, which belongs to the well-known neotectonic Jalisco continental triple junction. The region is characterized by active volcanism (Ceboruco, Volcan de Fuego), tectonic (1995 earthquake, M=8, 40-50 mm to SW) and hydrothermal (San Juan Cosala & Villa Corona spas and La Calera sinter deposit) activities. Hydrothermal petroleum has been described in active continental rift (East African Rift) and marine spreading zones (Guaymas Basin, Gulf of California). In 1868 the Mexican local press reported that manifestations of bitumen were appearing in front of the Columba Cap on the mid south shore of Lake Chapala. This bitumen is linked to the lake bottom and when the water level decreases sufficiently it is possible to access these tar bodies as islands. Because of these manifestations the Mexican oil company (PEMEX) drilled an exploration well (2,348m) at Tizapan El Alto without success. Hydrothermal activity is evident in the tar island zone as three in-shore thermal springs (26.8 m depth, 48.5° C, pH 7.8 and oriented N-S). The preliminary analyses by GC-MS of the tar from these islands indicate hydrothermal petroleum derived from lake sedimentary organic matter, generated at low temperatures (150° -200° C). The tars contain no n-alkanes, no PAH or other aromatics, but a major UCM of branched and cyclic hydrocarbons and mature biomarkers derived from lacustrine biota. The biomarkers consist of mainly 17α (H),21β (H)-hopanes ranging from C27 to C34 (no C28), gammacerane, tricyclic terpanes (C20-C26), carotane and its cracking products, and drimanes (C14-C16). The biomarker composition indicates an organic matter source from bacteria and algae, typical of lacustrine ecosystems. 14C dating of samples from two tar islands yielded ages exceeding 40 kyrs, i.e., old carbon from hydrothermal/tectonic remobilization of bitumen from deeper horizons to the surface. The occurrence of hydrothermal petroleum in

  20. Geology of Volcan Las Navajas, a pleistocene trachyte/peralkaline rhyolite volcanic center in Nayarit, Mexico

    Hegre, J.A.; Nelson, S.A.


    Volcan Las Navajas, located in the northwestern portion of the Mexican Volcanic Belt has produced a sequence of volcanic rocks with compositions in marked contrast to the predominantly calc-alkaline volcanoes which predominate in this part of Mexico. The oldest exposed lavas consist of trachytes with 63% SiO/sub 2/, 6% FeO*, and 500 ppm Zr along with comenditic rhyolites with 68% SiO/sub 2/, 5% FeO*, 800 ppm Zr, and an agpaitic index of 1.0. These lavas were followed by the eruption of a comenditic ash-flow tuff and the formation of a caldera 2.7 km in diameter. This caldera was subsequently filled by eruptions of pantelleritic rhyolite obsidian lava flows with 72% SiO/sub 2/, 8% FeO*, 1100 ppm Zr, and an agpaitic index of 1.5 to 1.9. A second caldera was then formed which is offset to the south of the main eruptive vents for previous eruptions. This younger caldera has a diameter of about 4.8 km and its southern walls have been covered by calc-alkaline andesitic lavas erupted from nearby Sanganguey volcano. Volcanoclastic sediments in the floor of the younger caldera have been tilted and faulted in a manner suggestive of late stage resurgence. Subsequent eruptions within the caldera, however, have been restricted to calc-alkaline andesites. Tectonically, the area in which this volcano occurs appears to have been undergoing a crustal rifting event since the Pliocene. The occurrence of these peralkaline rocks lends further support to such a hypothesis.

  1. Volcanism and Oil & Gas In Northeast China

    Shan Xuanlong


    Based on study on the relation with volcanic rock and oil & gas in Songliao Basin and Liaohe Basin in northeast China, author proposes that material from deep by volcanism enrichs the resources in basins, that heat by volcanism promotes organic matter transforming to oil and gas, that volcanic reservoir is fracture, vesicular, solution pore, intercrystal pore.Lava facies and pyroclastic facies are favourable reservoir. Mesozoic volcanic reservoir is majority of intermediate, acid rock,but Cenozoic volcanic reservoir is majority of basalt. Types of oil and gas pool relating to volcanic rock include volcanic fracture pool, volcanic unconformity pool, volcanic rock - screened pool, volcanic darpe structural pool.

  2. The Kenya rift revisited: insights into lithospheric strength through data-driven 3-D gravity and thermal modelling

    Sippel, Judith; Meeßen, Christian; Cacace, Mauro; Mechie, James; Fishwick, Stewart; Heine, Christian; Scheck-Wenderoth, Magdalena; Strecker, Manfred R.


    We present three-dimensional (3-D) models that describe the present-day thermal and rheological state of the lithosphere of the greater Kenya rift region aiming at a better understanding of the rift evolution, with a particular focus on plume-lithosphere interactions. The key methodology applied is the 3-D integration of diverse geological and geophysical observations using gravity modelling. Accordingly, the resulting lithospheric-scale 3-D density model is consistent with (i) reviewed descriptions of lithological variations in the sedimentary and volcanic cover, (ii) known trends in crust and mantle seismic velocities as revealed by seismic and seismological data and (iii) the observed gravity field. This data-based model is the first to image a 3-D density configuration of the crystalline crust for the entire region of Kenya and northern Tanzania. An upper and a basal crustal layer are differentiated, each composed of several domains of different average densities. We interpret these domains to trace back to the Precambrian terrane amalgamation associated with the East African Orogeny and to magmatic processes during Mesozoic and Cenozoic rifting phases. In combination with seismic velocities, the densities of these crustal domains indicate compositional differences. The derived lithological trends have been used to parameterise steady-state thermal and rheological models. These models indicate that crustal and mantle temperatures decrease from the Kenya rift in the west to eastern Kenya, while the integrated strength of the lithosphere increases. Thereby, the detailed strength configuration appears strongly controlled by the complex inherited crustal structure, which may have been decisive for the onset, localisation and propagation of rifting.

  3. The Role of Rift Obliquity During Pangea Fragmentation

    Brune, S.; Butterworth, N. P.; Williams, S.; Müller, D.


    Does supercontinent break-up follow specific laws? What parameters control the success and the failure of rift systems? Recent analytical and geodynamic modeling suggests that oblique rifting is energetically preferred over orthogonal rifting. This implies that during rift competition, highly oblique branches proceed to break-up while less oblique ones become inactive. These models predict that the relative motion of Earth's continents during supercontinent break-up is affected by the orientation and shape of individual rift systems. Here, we test this hypothesis based on latest plate tectonic reconstructions. Using PyGPlates, a recently developed Python library that allows script-based access to the plate reconstruction software GPlates, we quantify rift obliquity, extension velocity and their temporal evolution for continent-scale rift systems of the past 200 Myr. Indeed we find that many rift systems contributing to Pangea fragmentation involved strong rift obliquity. East and West Gondwana for instance split along the East African coast with a mean obliquity of 55° (measured as the angle between local rift trend normal and extension direction). While formation of the central and southern South Atlantic segment involved a low obliquity of 10°, the Equatorial Atlantic opened under a high angle of 60°. Rifting between Australia and Antarctica involved two stages with 25° prior to 100 Ma followed by 50° obliquity and distinct increase of extension velocity. Analyzing the entire passive margin system that formed during Pangea breakup, we find a mean obliquity of 40°, with a standard deviation of 20°. Hence 50% of these margins formed with an angle of 40° or more. Considering that many conceptual models of rifting and passive margin formation assume 2D deformation, our study quantifies the degree to which such 2D models are globally applicable, and highlights the importance of 3D models where oblique rifting is the dominant mode of deformation.

  4. Rayleigh-wave imaging of upper-mantle shear velocities beneath the Malawi Rift; Preliminary results from the SEGMeNT experiment

    Accardo, N. J.; Gaherty, J. B.; Shillington, D. J.; Nyblade, A.; Ebinger, C. J.; Mbogoni, G. J.; Chindandali, P. R. N.; Mulibo, G. D.; Ferdinand-Wambura, R.; Kamihanda, G.


    The Malawi Rift (MR) is an immature rift located at the southern tip of the Western branch of the East African Rift System (EARS). Pronounced border faults and tectonic segmentation are seen within the upper crust. Surface volcanism in the region is limited to the Rungwe volcanic province located north of Lake Malawi (Nyasa). However, the distribution of extension and magma at depth in the crust and mantle lithosphere is unknown. As the Western Rift of the EARS is largely magma-poor except for discrete volcanic provinces, the MR presents the ideal location to elucidate the role of magmatism in early-stage rifting and the manifestation of segmentation at depth. This study investigates the shear velocity of the crust and mantle lithosphere beneath the MR to constrain the thermal structure, the amount of total crustal and lithospheric thinning, and the presence and distribution of magmatism beneath the rift. Utilizing 55 stations from the SEGMeNT (Study of Extension and maGmatism in Malawi aNd Tanzania) passive-source seismic experiment operating in Malawi and Tanzania, we employed a multi-channel cross-correlation algorithm to obtain inter-station phase and amplitude information from Rayleigh wave observations between 20 and 80 s period. We retrieve estimates of phase velocity between 9-20 s period from ambient noise cross-correlograms in the frequency domain via Aki's formula. We invert phase velocity measurements to obtain estimates of shear velocity (Vs) between 50-200 km depth. Preliminary results reveal a striking low-velocity zone (LVZ) beneath the Rungwe volcanic province with Vs ~4.2-4.3 km/s in the uppermost mantle. Low velocities extend along the entire strike of Lake Malawi and to the west where a faster velocity lid (~4.5 km/s) is imaged. These preliminary results will be extended by incorporating broadband data from seven "lake"-bottom seismometers (LBS) to be retrieved from Lake Malawi in October of this year. The crust and mantle modeling will be

  5. La dorsal NE de Tenerife: hacia un modelo del origen y evolución de los rifts de islas oceánicas

    Delcamp, A.


    Full Text Available The NE Rift of Tenerife is an excellent example of a persistent, recurrent rift, providing important evidence of the origin and dynamics of these major volcanic features. The rift developed in three successive, intense and relatively short eruptive stages (a few hundred ka, separated by longer periods of quiescence or reduced activity: A Miocene stage (7266 ± 156 ka, apparently extending the central Miocene shield of Tenerife towards the Anaga massif; an Upper Pliocene stage (2710 ± 58 ka and the latest stage, with the main eruptive phase in the Pleistocene. Detailed geological (GIS mapping, geomagnetic reversal mapping and stratigraphic correlation, and radioisotopic (K/Ar dating of volcanic formations allowed the reconstruction of the latest period of rift activity. In the early phases of this stage the majority of the eruptions grouped tightly along the axis of the rift and show reverse polarity (corresponding to the Matuyama chron. Dykes are of normal and reverse polarities. In the final phase of activity, eruptions are more disperse and lavas and dykes are consistently of normal polarity (Brunhes chron. Volcanic units of normal polarity crossed by dykes of normal and reverse polarities yield ages apparently compatible with normal subchrons (M-B Precursor and Jaramillo in the Upper Matuyama chron. Three lateral collapses successively mass-wasted the rift: The Micheque collapse, completely concealed by subsequent nested volcanism, and the Güímar and La Orotava collapses, that are only partially filled. Time occurrence of collapses in the NE rift apparently coincides with glacial stages, suggesting that giant landslides may be finally triggered by sea level chan-ges during glaciations. Pre-collapse and nested volcanism is predominantly basaltic, except in the Micheque collapse, where magmas evolved towards intermediate and felsic (trachytic compositions. Rifts in the Canary Islands are long-lasting, recurrent features, probably related to

  6. Modeling volcanic ash dispersal

    CERN. Geneva


    The assessment of volcanic fallout hazard is an important scientific, economic, and political issue, especially in densely populated areas. From a scientific point of view, considerable progress has been made during the last two decades through the use of increasingly powerful computational models and capabilities. Nowadays, models are used to quantify hazard...

  7. Cleopatra Patera on Venus - Venera 15/16 evidence for a volcanic origin

    Schaber, G. G.; Kozak, R. C.; Masursky, H.


    The nonconcentric nature, anomalous depth, and terraced morphology of the nested craters that compose Cleopatra Patera are more closely analogous to volcanic craters (calderas) than multiring impact structures. Associated deposits northeast and downslope of the Patera first recognized on Venera 15/16 radar images are interpreted as volcanic plains related to, and perhaps cogenetic with, Cleopatra. The plains lavas probably originated as effusions from a radial rift zone or ring fissures. Rim deposits surrounding Cleopatra are asymmetric along the structural fabric of the region, also indicating fissure-type eruptions. Finally, a volcanic origin not only is easily reconciled with the tectonic setting of the Patera, it is almost required by the correlation between the Patera and regional structural trend.

  8. Deccan volcanism, the KT mass extinction and dinosaurs

    G Keller; A Sahni; S Bajpai


    Recent advances in Deccan volcanic studies indicate three volcanic phases with the phase-1 at 67.5 Ma followed by a 2 m.y. period of quiescence. Phase-2 marks the main Deccan volcanic eruptions in Chron 29r near the end of the Maastrichtian and accounts for ∼80% of the entire 3500 m thick Deccan lava pile. At least four of the world’s longest lava flows spanning 1000 km across India and out into the Gulf of Bengal mark phase-2. The final phase-3 was smaller, coincided with the early Danian Chron 29n and also witnessed several of the longest lava flows. The KT boundary and mass extinction was first discovered based on planktic foraminifera from shallow marine intertrappean sediments exposed in Rajahmundry quarries between the longest lava flows of the main volcanic phase-2 and smaller phase-3. At this locality early Danian (zone P1a) planktic foraminiferal assemblages directly overlie the top of phase-2 eruptions and indicate that the masse extinction coincided with the end of this volcanic phase. Planktic foraminiferal assemblages also mark the KT boundary in intertrappean sediments at Jhilmili, Chhindwara, where freshwater to estuarine conditions prevailed during the early Danian and indicate the presence of a marine seaway across India at KT time. Dinosaur bones, nesting sites with complete eggs and abundant eggshells are known from central India surrounding the hypothesized seaway through the Narmada-Tapti rift zone. A Maastrichtian age is generally assigned to these dinosaur remains. Age control may now be improved based on marine microfossils from sequences deposited in the seaway and correlating these strata to nearby terrestrial sequences with dinosaur remains.

  9. Deccan volcanism, the KT mass extinction and dinosaurs

    G Keller; A Sahni; S Bajpai


    Recent advances in Deccan volcanic studies indicate three volcanic phases with the phase-1 at 67.5 Ma followed by a 2 m.y. period of quiescence. Phase-2 marks the main Deccan volcanic eruptions in Chron 29r near the end of the Maastrichtian and accounts for ∼80% of the entire 3500 m thick Deccan lava pile. At least four of the world’s longest lava flows spanning 1000 km across India and out into the Gulf of Bengal mark phase-2. The final phase-3 was smaller, coincided with the early Danian Chron 29n and also witnessed several of the longest lava flows. The KT boundary and mass extinction was first discovered based on planktic foraminifera from shallow marine intertrappean sediments exposed in Rajahmundry quarries between the longest lava flows of the main volcanic phase-2 and smaller phase-3. At this locality early Danian (zone P1a) planktic foraminiferal assemblages directly overlie the top of phase-2 eruptions and indicate that the masse extinction coincided with the end of this volcanic phase. Planktic foraminiferal assemblages also mark the KT boundary in intertrappean sediments at Jhilmili, Chhindwara, where freshwater to estuarine conditions prevailed during the early Danian and indicate the presence of a marine seaway across India at KT time. Dinosaur bones, nesting sites with complete eggs and abundant eggshells are known from central India surrounding the hypothesized seaway through the Narmada-Tapti rift zone. A Maastrichtian age is generally assigned to these dinosaur remains. Age control may now be improved based on marine microfossils from sequences deposited in the seaway and correlating these strata to nearby terrestrial sequences with dinosaur remains.

  10. Wetlands as a Record of Climate Change and Hydrological Response in Arid Rift Settings

    Ashley, G. M.


    Of all the terrestrial depositional settings, rift basins typically provide the greatest accommodation space, and consequently have some of the longest records of continental sedimentation. Lake deposits were the only rift component studied for records of long-term climatic change and for testing hypotheses of orbital forcing. Recently, the continuing quest for the paleontological and cultural records of human origins entombed in the sedimentary rocks of the East African Rift System raised questions concerning hydrologic and biologic response to climatic change. Additional issues are the impact of climate on paleolandscapes and the environmental stresses that might have affected human evolution. Other important indicators of rift hydrology, such as springs and wetlands are now emerging as viable records of climate change. Rift valley basins are shallow, hydrologically closed systems that are responsive to shifts in climate, and specifically sensitive to changes in the hydrologic budget (P-ET). Long term wet-dry cycles in the low latitudes are thought to be astronomically controlled, i.e. Milankovitch precession cycles (19-23 ka). In the tropics, precipitation (P) varies with changes in solar insolation which fluctuates Lake levels are known to fluctuate in response to change in hydrologic budget and wetlands appear to respond similarly. Springs and groundwater-fed wetlands are common, however the sources and sustainability of water or what geologic factors lead to the formation and longevity of wetlands is not well established. It appears that rainfall is trapped on topographic highs (rift fault blocks and volcanoes). This meteoric water infiltrates quickly through porous volcanic rocks and is stored in aquifers and released slowly. As a component of the rift hydrologic system, wetlands appear to be reliable indicators of rainfall fluctuations on both Milankovitch and sub-Milankovitch time scales. Wetland sediments are commoner in the geologic record during times

  11. How inheritance, geochemical and geophysical properties of the lithospheric mantle influence rift development and subsequent collision

    Picazo, Suzanne; Chenin, Pauline; Müntener, Othmar; Manatschal, Gianreto; Karner, Garry; Johnson, Christopher


    . Conversely to a classical subduction where the oceanic lithosphere being subducted produces a mobile component that contributes to the formation of long-lived volcanic arcs, a hyper-extended rifted system and small oceanic basins (production of arc magmas. Such a mantle wedge might remains fertile with a high potential to melt during the first stages of subsequent extension. Hacker, B. R., Abers, G. A., and Peacock, S. M. (2003). Subduction factory 1. Theoretical mineralogy, densities, seismic wave speeds, and H2O contents. Journal of Geophysical Research, 108(B1):2029. Picazo, S., Müntener, O., Manatschal, G., Bauville, A., Karner, G., & Johnson, C. (2016). Mapping the nature of mantle domains in Western and Central Europe based on clinopyroxene and spinel chemistry: Evidence for mantle modification during an extensional cycle. Lithos, 266, 233-263.

  12. Calibration of a transient transport model to tritium data in streams and simulation of groundwater ages in the western Lake Taupo catchment, New Zealand

    M. A. Gusyev


    Full Text Available Here we present a general approach of calibrating transient transport models to tritium concentrations in river waters developed for the MT3DMS/MODFLOW model of the western Lake Taupo catchment, New Zealand. Tritium has a known pulse-shaped input to groundwater systems due to the bomb tritium in the early 1960s and, with its radioactive half-life of 12.32 yr, allows for the determination of the groundwater age. In the transport model, the tritium input (measured in rainfall passes through the groundwater system, and the simulated tritium concentrations are matched to the measured tritium concentrations in the river and stream outlets for the Waihaha, Whanganui, Whareroa, Kuratau and Omori catchments from 2000–2007. For the Kuratau River, tritium was also measured between 1960 and 1970, which allowed us to fine-tune the transport model for the simulated bomb-peak tritium concentrations. In order to incorporate small surface water features in detail, an 80 m uniform grid cell size was selected in the steady-state MODFLOW model for the model area of 1072 km2. The groundwater flow model was first calibrated to groundwater levels and stream baseflow observations. Then, the transient tritium transport MT3DMS model was matched to the measured tritium concentrations in streams and rivers, which are the natural discharge of the groundwater system. The tritium concentrations in the rivers and streams correspond to the residence time of the water in the groundwater system (groundwater age and mixing of water with different age. The transport model output showed a good agreement with the measured tritium values. Finally, the tritium-calibrated MT3DMS model is applied to simulate groundwater ages, which are used to obtain groundwater age distributions with mean residence times (MRTs in streams and rivers for the five catchments. The effect of regional and local hydrogeology on the simulated groundwater ages is investigated by demonstrating groundwater ages

  13. Properties of middle-late Proterozoic volcanic rocks in South Qinling and the Precambrian continental break-up

    夏林圻; 夏祖春; 徐学义


    In South Qinling, the volcanic series of the middle-late Proterozoic Yunxi Group, Yaolinghe Group, Xi.xiang Group and Bikou Group have characteristics of the continental rift volcanic rocks or continental flood basalts and are formed in continental intraplate tensional setting. The enrichment of incompatible elements, high εNd values and low-medium 87Sr/86Sr initial ratios of these volcanic rocks indicate that they were derived from asthenospheric plume. Under the action of the intense pull-apart in lithosphere, the mantle plume upwelled, quickly decompressed and melted, and finally produced magma. This tensional process made the continental crust break and eventually led to an oceanic basin in late Proterozoic. The middle-late Proterozoic volcanism is a precursor of Precarabrian continental break-up in the South Qinling.

  14. Venus - Stereoscopic Images of Volcanic Domes


    This Magellan image depicts a stereoscopic pair of an area on Venus with small volcanic domes. Stereoscopic images of Venus offer exciting new possibilities for scientific analysis of Venusian landforms, such as the domes shown here, impact craters, graben -- long rifts bounded by faults -- and other geologic features. Stereopsis, or a three-dimensional view of this scene, may be obtained by viewing with a stereoscope. One may also cut this photograph into two parts and look at the left image with the left eye and the right image with the right eye; conjugate images (the same features) should be about 5 centimeters (2 inches) apart when viewing. This area is located at 38.4 degrees south latitude and 78.3 degrees east longitude. The incidence, or look, angle of the left image is 28.5 degrees and that of the right image is 15.6 degrees. Radar illumination for both images comes from the left. A small dome at left center is about 140 meters (464 feet) high and 6 kilometers (3.7 miles) wide. Other domes with smaller relief can be perceived in three dimensions. At the smaller incidence angle used to acquire the image on the right, radar brightness is more sensitive to small changes in topography. This enhances the visibility of many of the domes in this scene.

  15. Thermal regimes of major volcanic centers: Magnetotelluric constraints

    Hermance, J.F.


    The interpretation of geophysical/electromagnetic field data has been used to study dynamical processes in the crust beneath three of the major tectono-volcanic features in North America: the Long Valley/Mono Craters Volcanic Complex in eastern California, the Cascades Volcanic Belt in Oregon, and the Rio Grande Rift in the area of Socorro, New Mexico. Primary accomplishments have been in the area of creating and implementing a variety of 2-D generalized inverse computer codes, and the application of these codes to fields studies on the basin structures and he deep thermal regimes of the above areas. In order to more fully explore the space of allowable models (i.e. those inverse solutions that fit the data equally well), several distinctly different approaches to the 2-D inverse problem have been developed: (1) an overdetermined block inversion; (2) an overdetermined spline inverstion; (3) a generalized underdetermined total inverse which allows one to tradeoff certain attributes of their model, such as minimum structure (flat models), roughness (smooth models), or length (small models). Moreover, we are exploring various approaches for evaluating the resolution model parameters for the above algorithms. 33 refs.

  16. A Comparison and Analog-Based Analysis of Sinuous Channels on the Rift Aprons of Ascraeus Mons and Pavonis Mons Volcanoes, Mars

    Collins, A.; de Wet, A.; Bleacher, J.; Schierl, Z.; Schwans, B.


    The origin of sinuous channels on the flanks of the Tharsis volcanoes on Mars is debated among planetary scientists. Some argue a volcanic genesis [1] while others have suggested a fluvial basis [2-4]. The majority of the studies thus far have focused on channels on the rift apron of Ascraeus Mons. Here, however, we broadly examine the channels on the rift apron of Pavonis Mons and compare them with those studied channels around Ascraeus. We compare the morphologies of features from both of these volcanoes with similar features of known volcanic origin on the island of Hawai i. We show that the morphologies between these two volcanoes in the Tharsis province are very similar and were likely formed by comparable processes, as previous authors have suggested [5]. We show that, although the morphologies of many of the channels around these volcanoes show some parallels to terrestrial fluvial systems, these morphologies can also be formed by volcanic processes. The context of these features suggests that volcanic processes were the more likely cause of these channels.

  17. Spatial probability distribution of future volcanic eruptions at El Hierro Island (Canary Islands, Spain)

    Becerril, Laura; Cappello, Annalisa; Galindo, Inés; Neri, Marco; Del Negro, Ciro


    The 2011 submarine eruption that took place in the proximity of El Hierro Island (Canary Islands, Spain) has raised the need to identify the most likely future emission zones even on volcanoes characterized by low frequency activity. Here, we propose a probabilistic method to build the susceptibility map of El Hierro, i.e. the spatial distribution of vent opening for future eruptions, based on the probabilistic analysis of volcano-structural data of the Island collected through new fieldwork measurements, bathymetric information, as well as analysis of geological maps, orthophotos and aerial photographs. These data have been divided into different datasets and converted into separate and weighted probability density functions, which were included in a non-homogeneous Poisson process to produce the volcanic susceptibility map. The most likely area to host new eruptions in El Hierro is in the south-western part of the West rift. High probability locations are also found in the Northeast and South rifts, and along the submarine parts of the rifts. This map represents the first effort to deal with the volcanic hazard at El Hierro and can be a support tool for decision makers in land planning, emergency measures and civil defense actions.

  18. Seismicity of the Earth 1900-2013 East African Rift

    Hayes, Gavin P.; Jones, Eric S.; Stadler, Timothy J.; Barnhart, William D.; McNamara, Daniel E.; Benz, Harley M.; Furlong, Kevin P.; Villaseñor, Antonio; Hayes, Gavin P.; Jones, Eric S.; Stadler, Timothy J.; Barnhart, William D.; McNamara, Daniel E.; Benz, Harley M.; Furlong, Kevin P.; Villaseñor, Antonio


    The East African Rift system (EARS) is a 3,000-km-long Cenozoic age continental rift extending from the Afar triple junction, between the horn of Africa and the Middle East, to western Mozambique. Sectors of active extension occur from the Indian Ocean, west to Botswana and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). It is the only rift system in the world that is active on a continent-wide scale, providing geologists with a view of how continental rifts develop over time into oceanic spreading centers like the Mid-Atlantic Ridge.

  19. Archaeology in the Kilauea East Rift Zone: Part 1, Land-use model and research design, Kapoho, Kamaili and Kilauea Geothermal Subzones, Puna District, Hawaii Island

    Burtchard, G.C.; Moblo, P. [International Archaeological Research Inst., Inc., Honolulu, HI (United States)


    The Puna Geothermal Resource Subzones (GRS) project area encompasses approximately 22,000 acres centered on the Kilauea East Rift Zone in Puna District, Hawaii Island. The area is divided into three subzones proposed for geothermal power development -- Kilauea Middle East Rift, Kamaili and Kapoho GRS. Throughout the time of human occupation, eruptive episodes along the rift have maintained a dynamic landscape. Periodic volcanic events, for example, have changed the coastline configuration, altered patterns of agriculturally suitable sediments, and created an assortment of periodically active, periodically quiescent, volcanic hazards. Because of the active character of the rift zone, then, the area`s occupants have always been obliged to organize their use of the landscape to accommodate a dynamic mosaic of lava flow types and ages. While the specific configuration of settlements and agricultural areas necessarily changed in response to volcanic events, it is possible to anticipate general patterns in the manner in which populations used the landscape through time. This research design offers a model that predicts the spatial results of long-term land-use patterns and relates them to the character of the archaeological record of that use. In essence, the environmental/land-use model developed here predicts that highest population levels, and hence the greatest abundance and complexity of identifiable prehistoric remains, tended to cluster near the coast at places that maximized access to productive fisheries and agricultural soils. With the possible exception of a few inland settlements, the density of archaeological remains expected to decrease with distance from the coastline. The pattern is generally supported in the regions existing ethnohistoric and archaeological record.

  20. 231Pa systematics in postglacial volcanic rocks from Iceland

    Turner, Simon; Kokfelt, Thomas; Hoernle, Kaj; Lundstrom, Craig; Hauff, Folkmar


    Several recent studies have highlighted the potential of combined 238U-230Th and 235U-231Pa systematics to constrain upwelling rates and the role of recycled mafic lithologies in mantle plume-derived basalts. Accordingly, we present measurements of the 231Pa concentrations from 26 mafic volcanic rocks from Iceland, including off-axis basalts from the Snaefellsnes Peninsula, to complement previously published 238U-230Th-226Ra data. 231Pa concentrations vary from 27 to 624 fg/g and (231Pa/235U) ratios from 1.12 to 2.11 with the exception of one anomalous sample from the Southeast Rift which has a 231Pa deficit with (231Pa/235U) = 0.86. An important new result is that basalts from the Southeast Rift and the Snaefellsnes Peninsula define a trend at relatively low (231Pa/235U) for a given (230Th/238U) ratio. Many of the remaining samples fall in or around the global field for ocean island basalts but those from the Mid-Iceland Belt and the Southwest Rift/Reykjanes Peninsula extend to higher (231Pa/235U) ratios at a given (230Th/238U), similar to mid-ocean ridge basalts. In principle, these lavas could result from melting of peridotite at lower pressures. However, there is no reason to suspect that the Mid-Iceland Belt and the Southwest Rift lavas reflect shallower melting than elsewhere in Iceland. In our preferred model, these lavas reflect melting of garnet peridotite whereas those from the Southeast Rift and the Snaefellsnes Peninsula contain a significant contribution (up to 20%) of melt from garnet pyroxenite. This is consistent with incompatible trace element and radiogenic isotope evidence for recycled oceanic crust in these lavas. There is increasing agreement that the displacement of ocean island basalts to lower (231Pa/235U) ratios at a given (230Th/238U), compared to mid-ocean ridge basalts, reflects the role of recycled mafic lithologies such as garnet pyroxenite as well as higher average pressures of melting. It now seems likely that this interpretation may

  1. Exploring Hawaiian Volcanism

    Poland, Michael P.; Okubo, Paul G.; Hon, Ken


    In 1912 the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) was established by Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor Thomas A. Jaggar Jr. on the island of Hawaii. Driven by the devastation he observed while investigating the volcanic disasters of 1902 at Montagne Pelée in the Caribbean, Jaggar conducted a worldwide search and decided that Hawai`i provided an excellent natural laboratory for systematic study of earthquake and volcano processes toward better understanding of seismic and volcanic hazards. In the 100 years since HVO's founding, surveillance and investigation of Hawaiian volcanoes have spurred advances in volcano and seismic monitoring techniques, extended scientists' understanding of eruptive activity and processes, and contributed to development of global theories about hot spots and mantle plumes.

  2. Exploring Hawaiian volcanism

    Poland, Michael P.; Okubo, Paul G.; Hon, Ken


    In 1912 the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) was established by Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor Thomas A. Jaggar Jr. on the island of Hawaii. Driven by the devastation he observed while investigating the volcanic disasters of 1902 at Montagne Pelée in the Caribbean, Jaggar conducted a worldwide search and decided that Hawai‘i provided an excellent natural laboratory for systematic study of earthquake and volcano processes toward better understanding of seismic and volcanic hazards. In the 100 years since HVO’s founding, surveillance and investigation of Hawaiian volcanoes have spurred advances in volcano and seismic monitoring techniques, extended scientists’ understanding of eruptive activity and processes, and contributed to development of global theories about hot spots and mantle plumes.

  3. Rift architecture and sedimentology of the Phetchabun Intermontane Basin, central Thailand

    Remus, David; Webster, Mark; Keawkan, Kanjana

    The Phetchabun Basin, located onshore in central Thailand is one of at least 30 Tertiary intermontane basins identified in Thailand. The basin is a composite of several north-south trending half and full graben, which formed through transtensional dextral shear along the Mae Ping fault zone. Several conjugate strike-slip faults cut the basin and may have acted as the mechanism for formation of the individual graben. The grabens vary in depth from 2500 to 1100 m with the deepest being in the south and progressively shallowing northwards. Seismic cross sections across the basin reveal typical rift structuring. Central graben horsts, hanging wall anticlines and rotated fault blocks predominate within the graben, while wrench style structures are evident along inferred transfer zones. Sedimentation commenced in the Oligocene with syn-rift fluvial deposits and associated rift volcanics. An Oligocene to Mid-Miocene sedimentary sequence (Wichian Buri Group) of fluvial and lacustrine deposits followed. Diorite and diabase intrusives reflect periods of igneous activity during the Early and Late Middle Miocene. After the Mid-Miocene tectonic episode, lacustrine conditions were re-established over much of the basin and predominantly fine-grained sediments were deposited (Chaliang Lab Formation). Plio-Pleistocene sediments comprising lithic sands and shales were deposited in an oxidizing alluvial environment. Waxy oils and dry gas have been recovered from thin bedded sandstone reservoirs and igneous sills. Initial tests at Wichian Buri-1 indicated flow rates up to 500 BOPD from thin sands, while Bo Rang-1 tested gas at rates up to 5.5 MMCFG/D from an altered sill.

  4. Red Sea rift-related Quseir basalts, central Eastern Desert, Egypt: Petrogenesis and tectonic processes

    Farahat, Esam S.; Ali, Shehata; Hauzenberger, Christoph


    Mineral and whole-rock chemistry of Red Sea rift-related Tertiary basalts from south Quseir city, central Eastern Desert of Egypt is presented to investigate their petrogenesis and relationship to tectonic processes. The south Quseir basalts (SQB) are classified as high-Ti (TiO2 >2 wt.%) subalkaline transitional lava emplaced in an anorogenic tectonic setting. Their Mg# varies from 48 to 53 indicating the evolved nature of the SQB. Pearce element ratios suggest that the SQB magmas evolved via fractional crystallization of olivine + clinopyroxene ± plagioclase, but the absence of Eu anomalies argues against significant plagioclase fractionation. Clinopyroxene compositions provide evidence for polybaric fractionation of the parental mafic magmas. Estimated temperatures of crystallization are 1015 to 1207 °C for clinopyroxene and 1076 to 1155 °C for plagioclase. These values are interpreted to result from early stage crystallization of clinopyroxene followed by concurrent crystallization of clinopyroxene and plagioclase. The incompatible trace element signatures of the SQB (La/Ba = 0.08-0.10 and La/Nb = 0.89-1.04) are comparable to those of ocean island basalts (OIB) generated from an asthenospheric mantle source unaffected by subduction components. Modeling calculations indicate that the SQB primary magmas were derived from 4-5% partial melting of a garnet-bearing lherzolite mantle source. The NE Egyptian basaltic volcanism is spatially and temporally related to Red Sea rifting and to the local E-W striking faults, confirming a relationship to tectonic activity. Our results suggest that the extensional regime associated with Red Sea rifting controlled the generation of the Egyptian basalts, likely as a result of passive upwelling of asthenospheric mantle.

  5. Subdiffusion of volcanic earthquakes

    Abe, Sumiyoshi


    A comparative study is performed on volcanic seismicities at Mt.Eyjafjallajokull in Iceland and Mt. Etna in Sicily, Italy, from the viewpoint of science of complex systems, and the discovery of remarkable similarities between them regarding their exotic spatio-temporal properties is reported. In both of the volcanic seismicities as point processes, the jump probability distributions of earthquakes are found to obey the exponential law, whereas the waiting-time distributions follow the power law. In particular, a careful analysis is made about the finite size effects on the waiting-time distributions, and accordingly, the previously reported results for Mt. Etna [S. Abe and N. Suzuki, EPL 110, 59001 (2015)] are reinterpreted. It is shown that spreads of the volcanic earthquakes are subdiffusive at both of the volcanoes. The aging phenomenon is observed in the "event-time-averaged" mean-squared displacements of the hypocenters. A comment is also made on presence/absence of long term memories in the context of t...

  6. Characteristics of seismicity in Eritrea (2011-2012): Implications for rifting dynamics

    Goitom, B.; Hammond, J. O. S.; Kendal, M. J.; Ogubazghi, G.; Keir, D.; Ayele, A.; Illsley-Kemp, F.


    Eritrea hosts the final stages of on-land East-African rifting, yet questions remain about how rifting transits from the Afar Depression to the Red Sea. In this study, we use data from recent deployments of 6 broadband seismometers in Eritrea together with deployments in Ethiopia to locate seismicity and determine the current focus of strain. Over 1000 events have been located with local magnitudes 0.7-5.0. A significant period of seismicity was observed on 1 July 2012 around Nabro volcano and is associated with the biggest event of mL 5 preceded by 33 events in the previous two days. It may be related to magma movement below Nabro. Other significant seismicity was observed on 25 December 2011 and is correlated with an earthquake of mL 4.2 and associated with 13 other events on the same day. This event is located around Hayli Gubbi and Ale Bagu volcanoes and could be related to the activities around these volcanoes. We use double difference relocations to improve accuracy and show two main clusters of seismicity, one oriented NW-SE in the Bada-Alid axis along the north-western boundary of the Danakil microplate and the other NE-SW, following the trend of the Biddu-Nabro volcanic complex. Our new estimates of seismicity demarcate the boundary between the Nubian, Somalian, and Danakil Microplate and suggest that the Danakil microplate may be broken in two along the Biddu-Nabro Volcanic complex. We estimate b-values for the different clusters of events and show that close to the major border faults near Massawa, average b-values are lower (0.65) than that found near the volcanic centres (1.2 - Bada-Alid, 0.81 - Biddu-Nabro). This may indicate that the stress is less in the volcanic regions and the seismicity is due to movement of magma fluids and strain is accommodated by the injection of magma. In contrast the earthquakes around Massawa occur in relatively stronger rocks suggesting strain may be accommodated by movement on larger faults.

  7. Late Cenozoic volcanism in the western Woodlark Basin area, SW Pacific: the sources of marine volcanic ash layers based on their elemental and Sr-Nd isotope compositions

    Lackschewitz, K. S.; Mertz, D. F.; Devey, C. W.; Garbe-Schönberg, C.-D.


    Tephra fallout layers and volcaniclastic deposits, derived from volcanic sources around and on the Papuan Peninsula, form a substantial part of the Woodlark Basin marine sedimentary succession. Sampling by the Ocean Drilling Program Leg 180 in the western Woodlark Basin provides the opportunity to document the distribution of the volcanically-derived components as well as to evaluate their chronology, chemistry, and isotope compositions in order to gain information on the volcanic sources and original magmatic systems. Glass shards selected from 57 volcanogenic layers within the sampled Pliocene-Pleistocene sedimentary sequence show predominantly rhyolitic compositions, with subordinate basaltic andesites, basaltic trachy-andesites, andesites, trachy-andesites, dacites, and phonolites. It was possible to correlate only a few of the volcanogenic layers between sites using geochemical and age information apparently because of the formation of strongly compartmentalised sedimentary realms on this actively rifting margin. In many cases it was possible to correlate Leg 180 volcanic components with their eruption source areas based on chemical and isotope compositions. Likely sources for a considerable number of the volcanogenic deposits are Moresby and Dawson Strait volcanoes (D'Entrecasteaux Islands region) for high-K calc-alkaline glasses. The Dawson Strait volcanoes appear to represent the source for five peralkaline tephra layers. One basaltic andesitic volcaniclastic layer shows affinities to basaltic andesites from the Woodlark spreading tip and Cheshire Seamount. For other layers, a clear identification of the sources proved impossible, although their isotope and chemical signatures suggest similarities to south-west Pacific subduction volcanism, e.g. New Britain and Tonga-Kermadec island arcs. Volcanic islands in the Trobriand Arc (for example, Woodlark Island Amphlett Islands and/or Egum Atoll) are probable sources for several volcaniclastic layers with ages

  8. Tectonic characteristics and structural styles of a continental rifted basin: Revelation from deep seismic reflection profiles

    Yuan Li


    Full Text Available The Fushan Depression is a half-graben rifted sub-basin located in the southeast of the Beibuwan Basin, South China Sea. The Paleogene Liushagang sequence is the main hydrocarbon-bearing stratigraphic unit in the sub-basin. Using three-dimensional (3-D seismic data and logging data over the sub-basin, we analyzed structural styles and sedimentary characteristics of the Liushagang sequence. Five types of structural styles were defined: ancient horst, traditional slope, flexure slope-break, faulted slope-break and multiple-stage faults slope, and interpretations for positions, background and development formations of each structural style were discussed. Structural framework across the sub-basin reveals that the most remarkable tectonic setting is represented by the central transfer zone (CTZ which divides the sub-basin into two independent depressions, and two kinds of sequence architectures are summarized: (i the western multi-stage faults slope; (ii the eastern flexure slope break belt. Combined with regional stress field of the Fushan Depression, we got plane combinations of the faults, and finally built up plan distribution maps of structural system for main sequence. Also, we discussed the controlling factors mainly focused on subsidence history and background tectonic activities such as volcanic activity and earthquakes. The analysis of structural styles and tectonic evolution provides strong theoretical support for future prospecting in the Fushan sub-basin and other similar rifted basins of the Beibuwan Basin in South China Sea.

  9. The 24th January 2016 Hawassa earthquake: Implications for seismic hazard in the Main Ethiopian Rift

    Wilks, Matthew; Ayele, Atalay; Kendall, J.-Michael; Wookey, James


    Earthquakes of low to intermediate magnitudes are a commonly observed feature of continental rifting and particularly in regions of Quaternary to Recent volcanism such as in the Main Ethiopian Rift (MER). Although the seismic hazard is estimated to be less in the Hawassa region of the MER than further north and south, a significant earthquake occurred on the 24th January 2016 in the Hawassa caldera basin and close to the Corbetti volcanic complex. The event was felt up to 100 km away and caused structural damage and public anxiety in the city of Hawassa itself. In this paper we first refine the earthquake's location using data from global network and Ethiopian network stations. The resulting location is at 7.0404°N, 38.3478°E and at 4.55 km depth, which suggests that the event occurred on structures associated with the caldera collapse of the Hawassa caldera in the early Pleistocene and not through volcano-tectonic processes at Corbetti. We calculate local and moment magnitudes, which are magnitude scales more appropriate at regional hypocentral distances than (mb) at four stations. This is done using a local scale (attenuation term) previously determined for the MER and spectral analysis for ML and MW respectively and gives magnitude estimates of 4.68 and 4.29. The event indicates predominantly normal slip on a N-S striking fault structure, which suggests that slip continues to occur on Wonji faults that have exploited weaknesses inherited from the preceding caldera collapse. These results and two previous earthquakes in the Hawassa caldera of M > 5 highlight that earthquakes continue to pose a risk to structures within the caldera basin. With this in mind, it is suggested that enhanced monitoring and public outreach should be considered.

  10. Structural pattern at the northwestern sector of the Tepic-Zacoalco rift and tectonic implications for the Jalisco block, western Mexico

    Urrutia-Fucugauchi, Jaime; González-Morán, Tomás


    Analysis of the aeromagnetic anomalies over the northwestern sector of the Tepic-Zacoalco rift documents a NE-SW pattern of lineaments that are perpendicular to the inferred NW-SE boundary between the Jalisco block and the Sierra Madre Occidental. The boundary lies within the central sector of the Tepic-Zacoalco rift immediately north of the Ceboruco and Tepetiltic stratovolcanoes and extends up to the San Juan stratovolcano, where it intersects the NE-SW magnetic anomaly lineament that runs toward the Pacific coast (which intersects two volcanic centers). This N35°E lineament separates the central rift zone of low amplitude mainly negative anomalies (except those positive anomalies over the stratovolcanoes) from the zone to the north and west characterized by high amplitude positive long wavelength anomalies. The NE-SW lineament is parallel to the western sector of the Ameca graben and the offshore Bahia de Banderas graben and to the structural features of the Punta Mita peninsula at the Pacific coast, and thus seems to form part of a regional NE-SW pattern oblique to the proposed westward or northwestward motion of the Jalisco block. The orientation of this regional structural pattern at the northern end of the Tepic-Zacoalco rift seems consistent with proposed dominant SW-directed extension along the rift during the Pliocene and Quaternary, rather than with NW-SE lateral strike-slip faulting. The orthogonal pattern that characterizes the northernmost boundary of the Tepic-Zacoalco rift is oblique to the pattern observed in the Grande de Santiago river (which conforms the northern limit of the rift) and for the central-eastern sectors of the Ameca graben (south of the rift). This spatial arrangement of major lineaments and structural elements points to a complex tectonic history for the region that includes the rifting of the Gulf of California and margin deformation due to plate convergence and kinematic re-organization events, and which may have resulted in

  11. The topology of evolving rift fault networks: Single-phase vs multi-phase rifts

    Duffy, Oliver B.; Nixon, Casey W.; Bell, Rebecca E.; Jackson, Christopher A.-L.; Gawthorpe, Rob L.; Sanderson, David J.; Whipp, Paul S.


    Rift fault networks can be complex, particularly those developed by multiple periods of non-coaxial extension, comprising non-colinear faults with many interactions. Thus, topology, rather than simple geometry, is required to characterise such networks, as it provides a way to describe the arrangement of individual faults in the network. Topology is analysed here in terms of nodes (isolated I nodes or connected Y or X nodes) and branches (I-I, I-C, C-C branches). In map view, the relative proportions of these parameters vary in natural single- and multi-phase rift fault networks and in scaled physical models at different stages of development and strain. Interactions in single-phase rifting are limited to fault splays and along-strike fault linkage (I node and I-I or I-C branch dominated networks), whereas in multi-phase rifting the topology evolves towards Y node and C-C branch dominated networks, with the degree of connectivity increasing with greater strain. The changes in topology and network connectivity have significant implications for fluid flow and reservoir compartmentalisation studies. Furthermore, topology helps to distinguish single and multiple phase extension (i.e. tectonic histories), and thus provide constraints on the geodynamic context of sedimentary basins.

  12. Hydrothermal bitumen generated from sedimentary organic matter of rift lakes - Lake Chapala, Citala Rift, western Mexico

    Zarate del Valle, Pedro F. [Departamento de Quimica, Universidad de Guadalajara - CUCEI, Ap. Postal 4-021, Guadalajara, Jalisco CP 44410 (Mexico); Simoneit, Bernd R.T. [Environmental and Petroleum Geochemistry Group, College of Oceanic and Atmospheric Sciences, Oregon State University, Building 104, Corvallis, OR 97331-5503 (United States)]. E-mail:


    Lake Chapala is in the Citala Rift of western Mexico, which in association with the Tepic-Zacoalco and Colima Rifts, form the well-known neotectonic Jalisco continental triple junction. The rifts are characterized by evidence for both paleo- and active hydrothermal activity. At the south shore of the lake, near the Los Gorgos sublacustrine hydrothermal field, there are two tar emanations that appear as small islands composed of solid, viscous and black bitumen. Aliquots of tar were analyzed by GC-MS and the mixtures are comprised of geologically mature biomarkers and an UCM. PAH and n-alkanes are not detectable. The biomarkers consist mainly of hopanes, gammacerane, tricyclic terpanes, carotane and its cracking products, steranes, and drimanes. The biomarker composition and bulk C isotope composition ({delta} {sup 13}C = -21.4%) indicate an organic matter source from bacteria and algae, typical of lacustrine ecosystems. The overall composition of these tars indicates that they are hydrothermal petroleum formed from lacustrine organic matter in the deeper sediments of Lake Chapala exceeding 40 ka ({sup 14}C) in age and then forced to the lakebed by tectonic activity. The absence of alkanes and the presence of an UCM with mature biomarkers are consistent with rapid hydrothermal oil generation and expulsion at temperatures of 200-250 deg. C. The occurrence of hydrothermal petroleum in continental rift systems is now well known and should be considered in future energy resource exploration in such regions.

  13. Vestiges of an Iapetan rift basin in the New Jersey Highlands: Implfications for the Neoproterozoic Laurentian margin

    Gates, A.E.; Volkert, R.A.


    Thin, discontinuous remnants of Neoproterozoic intracratonic rift-basin deposits of the Chestnut Hill Formation occur in the western New Jersey Highlands. These deposits form an important link between well-documented Iapetan rift-basins in both the northern and southern Appalachians. The close spatial relations of Chestnut Hill rocks to Paleozoic sedimentary rocks open the possibility that additional Iapetan rift-basins could be concealed beneath the rocks of the Valley and Ridge Province to the west indicating a much broader zone of rifting than has been previously proposed. The Chestnut Hill Formation is intermittently exposed along a 100 km-long band that extends northeast from Pennsylvania nearly to New York State. The lower part of the Chestnut Hill Formation is composed of interbedded lithic pebble- to boulder-conglomerate and feldspathic sandstone grading upward into interbedded phyllite, feldspathic and quartz sandstone, local paleosaprolite, quartz-pebble conglomerate, thin limestone lenses, volcanic, and volcaniclasic rocks, abundant bedded ironstone (hematite ore), and ultimately into diamictites that are interpreted as possible tilloids and containing rounded intra and extrabasinal clasts of the other lithologies. Extensive soft-sediment deformation, cross bedding, and clastic dikes are common in all but the lowest and upper facies. Banded hematite layers occur preferentially in fine-grained tuffs and tuffaceous sediments, but hematitization has affected most lithologies. Volcanic rocks consist of altered rhyolitic tuffs and lapilli tuffs that are interbedded with sediments. The Chestnut Hill Formation is interpreted to have been deposited in early alluvial, and later a complex of fluvial, lacustrine and deltaic environments. Provenance studies based upon petrographic and geochemical analysis of clastic rocks indicate that the sediments are predominantly immature and reflect derivation from local uplifted felsic basement sources in a rifted

  14. Role of Variscan tectonics inheritance in the Jurassic rifting of the passive margin of Adria: insights from the Canavese Zone (Western Southern Alps, Italy)

    De Caroli, Sara; Succo, Andrea; Centelli, Arianna; Barbero, Edoardo; Borghi, Alessandro; Balestro, Gianni; Festa, Andrea


    The formation of rifted continental margins by extension of continental lithosphere leading to seafloor spreading is a complex component of the plate tectonic cycle. Geological mapping, supported by multidisciplinary analyses of rifted continental margins may thus provide significant information to better understand and model the related processes, and explain the geometry of those margins as observed by means of seismic imaging. We present here our new findings on the Canavese Zone (Italian Western Alps), which is inferred to represent the remnant of the Jurassic syn-rift stretching, thinning and dismemberment of the distal passive margin of Adria, occurred during the opening of the Northern Alpine Tethys. Through multiscale and multidisciplinary, field- and laboratory-based structural, stratigraphic and petrographic studies (from geological map scale to mesoscale and microscope scale), we document that the tectonic dismemberment of the rifted continental margin of Adria did not simply result from the syn-rift Jurassic extension, but was strongly favored by the inheritance of older (Variscan and post-Variscan) tectonic stages, which controlled earlier lithospheric weakness. Our findings show the existence of two different tectonic units of the pre-Variscan basement, which were deformed, juxtaposed and exhumed already during the Variscan orogeny as constraint by (i) intrusion of early Permian granitoids, (ii) emplacement of volcanic rocks and (iii) unconformable overlie of Permian deposits on those metamorphic units. The syn-extensional (syn-rift) Jurassic faults, which affect the Mesozoic sedimentary succession, show only limited vertical displacement that was ineffective in producing and justifying the crustal thinning observed in pre-Variscan basement units. Finally, Late Cretaceous-Early Paleocene and Late Cenozoic strike-slip faulting (i.e. Alpine and Insubric tectonic stages) reactivated previously formed faults, leading to the formation of a complex tectonic

  15. Crustal structure and rift tectonics across the Cauvery–Palar basin, Eastern Continental Margin of India based on seismic and potential field modelling

    D Twinkle; G Srinivasa Rao; M Radhakrishna; K S R Murthy


    The Cauvery–Palar basin is a major peri-cratonic rift basin located along the Eastern Continental Margin of India (ECMI) that had formed during the rift-drift events associated with the breakup of eastern Gondwanaland (mainly India–Sri Lanka–East Antarctica). In the present study, we carry out an integrated analysis of the potential field data across the basin to understand the crustal structure and the associated rift tectonics. The composite-magnetic anomaly map of the basin clearly shows the onshore-tooffshore structural continuity, and presence of several high-low trends related to either intrusive rocks or the faults. The Curie depth estimated from the spectral analysis of offshore magnetic anomaly data gave rise to 23 km in the offshore Cauvery–Palar basin. The 2D gravity and magnetic crustal models indicate several crustal blocks separated by major structures or faults, and the rift-related volcanic intrusiverocks that characterize the basin. The crustal models further reveal that the crust below southeast Indian shield margin is ∼36 km thick and thins down to as much as 13–16 km in the Ocean Continent Transition (OCT) region and increases to around 19–21 km towards deep oceanic areas of the basin. Thefaulted Moho geometry with maximum stretching in the Cauvery basin indicates shearing or low angle rifting at the time of breakup between India–Sri Lanka and the East Antarctica. However, the additional stretching observed in the Cauvery basin region could be ascribed to the subsequent rifting of Sri Lanka from India. The abnormal thinning of crust at the OCT is interpreted as the probable zone of emplaced Proto-Oceanic Crust (POC) rocks during the breakup. The derived crustal structure along with other geophysical data further reiterates sheared nature of the southern part of the ECMI.

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

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


    A common issue at volcanic passive margins (VPM) is the lack of observation of the structures that accommodate stretching and thinning. Indeed, the most distal parts and the Ocean-Continent Transition is often masked by thick seaward-dipping reflectors (SDR) sequences. Some current challenges are then to know if the observed thinning fit the divergence (thinning vs dyking); and what is the rheological effect of magma supply that re-thickens the crust during extension? In the Central Afar magmatic rift (Ethiopia), the structures related to rifting since Oligocene are cropping out onshore and are well preserved. We present here a new structural model based on field data and lavas (U-Th/He and K/Ar) datings along a balanced cross-section of the Central Afar Western Margin. We mapped continent-ward normal fault array affecting highly tilted trapp series (29-30 Ma) unconformably overlain by tilted Oligo-Miocene (25-7 Ma) acid series. The main extensional and necking/thinning event took place during the end of this Miocene magmatic episode. The Pliocene flood basalt (Stratoid series) is erupted over an already thinned crust. The bulk extension for the Afar Western Margin is ß ~ 2.50. Our main findings are: - Oligo-Miocene deformation in Central Afar appears to be largely distributed through space and time ("magmatic wide rift"). It has been accommodated in a 200-300 km wide strip being a diffuse incipient plate boundary during the whole rifting history until the formation of present-day magmatic segments. There is a period of tectonic quiescence accompanied with few magma erupted at the surface between 25 Ma and 7 Ma. We suggest that tectonic and magmatic activity was focused at that time on the highly faulted Danakil block and Southern Red Sea, away from our study zone. - ß ~ 2.50 is higher than the thinning factor of ~1.30 observed in geophysical studies. We propose that the continental crust in Central Afar has been re-thickened during extension by the syn-rift

  17. Geophysical glimpses into the Ferrigno Rift at the northwestern tip of the West Antarctic Rift System

    Bingham, Robert; Ferraccioli, Fausto


    The West Antarctic Rift System (WARS) forms one of the largest continental rift systems on Earth. The WARS is of major significance as it forms the lithospheric cradle for the marine-based and potentially unstable West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS). Seismic refraction, reflection, aeromagnetic, gravity and drilling in the Ross Sea have revealed most of what we know about its structure, tectonic and magmatic patterns and sedimentary basins. Aerogeophysical research and passive seismic networks have considerably extended our knowledge of the WARS and its influence on the overlying WAIS in the Siple Coast and Amundsen Sea Embayment (ASE) regions. The Bellingshausen Sea Embayment region has however remained largely unexplored, and hence the possible extent of the WARS in this sector has remained poorly constrained. Here we use a combination of reconnaissance ground-based and airborne radar observations, airborne gravity, satellite gravity and aeromagnetic data to investigate the WARS in the Bellingshausen Sea Embayment, in the area of the Ferrigno Ice Stream (Bingham et al., 2012, Nature). This region is of high significance, as it one of the main sectors of the WAIS that is currently exhibiting rapid ice loss, thought to be driven primarily by oceanic warming. Assessing geological controls on subice topography and ice dynamics is therefore of prime importance in this part of the WAIS. Ground-based and airborne radar image a subglacial basin beneath the Ferrigno Ice Stream that is up to 1.5 kilometres deep and that connects the ice-sheet interior to the Bellingshausen Sea margin. We interpret this basin as a narrow, glacially overdeepened rift basin that formed at the northwestern tip of the WARS. Satellite gravity data cannot resolve such a narrow rift basin but indicate that the crust beneath the region is likely thinned, lending support to the hypothesis that this area is indeed part of the WARS. Widely-spaced aeromagnetic data image a linear low along the inferred

  18. Link between extension, dyking and subsidence as the reconstruction tool of intraplate rifting mechanism (backstripping data, modelling and geochronology)

    Polyansky, Oleg P.; Reverdatto, Vladimir V.; Babichev, Alexey V.


    Correlation between subsidence and extension-related magmatism is key in determining mechanism of intracratonic sedimentary basins formation. The total volume of basic sheet intrusions and volcanics within sedimentary rock mass characterizes indirectly the degree of depletion and thinning of the rifted mantle lithosphere. At present the documented features of real-world intracontinental basins show a wide range of parameters characterizing the duration and rate of subsidence, degree of extension/thinning of the lithosphere, age and extent of dyking. For creation of general model of continental rifting it is important to reconstruct an evolution of basins finished at the continental stage, not entered an oceanic spreading phase. One of examples of such structure is the Vilyui sedimentary basin in the eastern Siberian Platform which includes the massive emplacements (10**5 km3) of extrusive and intrusive rocks of the Vilyui large igneous province. We combine backstripping reconstructions of sedimentation and thermal regime during the subsidence with a numerical modelling based on the deformable solid mechanics. It is the first time that the evolution of sedimentation and subsidence which is nonuniform over the basin area has been analyzed for the Vilyui basin. The rift origin of the basin is proved. We estimate the spatial distribution of the parameters of crustal and mantle-lithosphere extension as well as expansion due to dike intrusions. According to the reconstructions, the type of subsidence curves for the sedimentary rocks of the basin depends on the tectonic regime of sedimentation in individual subbasins. The backstripping analysis revealed two stages of extension (sediments 4-5 km thick) and a foreland stage (sediments >2 km thick). With the two-layered lithosphere model, we concluded that the subcrustal layer underwent predominant extension (by a factor of 1.2-2.0 vs. 1.1-1.4 in the crust). In each section, dyke-related extension due to basic intrusion is

  19. Volcanism on Mars. Chapter 41

    Zimbelman, J. R.; Garry, W. B.; Bleacher, J. E.; Crown, D. A.


    Spacecraft exploration has revealed abundant evidence that Mars possesses some of the most dramatic volcanic landforms found anywhere within the solar system. How did a planet half the size of Earth produce volcanoes like Olympus Mons, which is several times the size of the largest volcanoes on Earth? This question is an example of the kinds of issues currently being investigated as part of the space-age scientific endeavor called "comparative planetology." This chapter summarizes the basic information currently known about volcanism on Mars. The volcanoes on Mars appear to be broadly similar in overall morphology (although, often quite different in scale) to volcanic features on Earth, which suggests that Martian eruptive processes are not significantly different from the volcanic styles and processes on Earth. Martian volcanoes are found on terrains of different age, and Martian volcanic rocks are estimated to comprise more than 50% of the Martian surface. This is in contrast to volcanism on smaller bodies such as Earth's Moon, where volcanic activity was mainly confined to the first half of lunar history (see "Volcanism on the Moon"). Comparative planetology supports the concept that volcanism is the primary mechanism for a planetary body to get rid of its internal heat; smaller bodies tend to lose their internal heat more rapidly than larger bodies (although, Jupiter's moon Io appears to contradict this trend; Io's intense volcanic activity is powered by unique gravitational tidal forces within the Jovian system; see "Volcanism on Io"), so that volcanic activity on Mars would be expected to differ considerably from that found on Earth and the Moon.

  20. Paleogene volcanism in Central Afghanistan: Possible far-field effect of the India-Eurasia collision

    Motuza, Gediminas; Šliaupa, Saulius


    A volcanic-sedimentary succession of Paleogene age is exposed in isolated patches at the southern margin of the Tajik block in the Ghor province of Central Afghanistan. The volcanic rocks range from basalts and andesites to dacites, including adakites. They are intercalated with sedimentary rocks deposited in shallow marine environments, dated biostratigraphically as Paleocene-Eocene. This age corresponds to the age of the Asyābēd andesites located in the western Ghor province estimated by the 40Ar/39Ar method as 54 Ma. The magmatism post-dates the Cimmerian collision between the Tajik block (including the Band-e-Bayan block) and the Farah Rod block located to the south. While the investigated volcanic rocks apparently bear geochemical signatures typical to an active continental margin environment, it is presumed that the magmatism was related to rifting processes most likely initiated by far-field tectonics caused by the terminal collision of the Indian plate with Eurasia (Najman et al., 2017). This event led to the dextral movement of the Farah Rod block, particularly along Hari Rod (Herat) fault system, resulting in the development of a transtensional regime in the proximal southern margin of the Tajik block and giving rise to a rift basin where marine sediments were interbedded with pillow lavas intruded by sheeted dyke series.

  1. Volcanic Eruptions in the southern Red Sea 2007-2013

    Jónsson, Sigurjón; Xu, Wenbin; Ruch, Joël


    After more than a century of volcanic quiescence the southern Red Sea has seen three volcanic eruptions during the past decade. The eruptions occurred on Jebel at Tair Island in 2007-8 and within the Zubair archipelago in 2011-12 and 2013. As the islands are remote, without geophysical instrumentation, and lack direct observers, we obtained most of the information about these eruptions from studying Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) and optical satellite images. We used the images to deduce the timing and progress of the volcanic activity and to constrain the geometry of the dikes feeding the eruptions. The Jebel at Tair eruption started energetically and caused damage to Yemeni military buildings on the island and even a few casualties. The erupted lava came from a short summit fissure and covers about 6 km2, which is almost half of the island. The fissure orientations of this and previous eruptions indicate that the stress field on Tair Island is temporarily varying and isolated from the regional Red Sea stress field. The eruptions within the Zubair archipelago, which is located about 50 km southeast of Tair Island, produced two new islands and were fed by dikes much larger than the small size of the new islands might suggest. This is indicated by relative displacements between different islands in the archipelago, derived from offset tracking of SAR images. Together the three volcanic eruptions and several seismic swarms indicate that the southern Red Sea has been experiencing a rifting episode with multiple dike intrusions and meter-scale extension, and that this part of the plate boundary is more active than previously thought.

  2. SHRIMP U-Pb dating of recurrent Cryogenian and Late Cambrian-Early Ordovician alkalic magmatism in central Idaho: Implications for Rodinian rift tectonics

    Lund, K.; Aleinikoff, J.N.; Evans, K.V.; duBray, E.A.; deWitt, E.H.; Unruh, D.M.


    Composite alkalic plutonic suites and tuffaceous diamictite, although discontinuously exposed across central Idaho in roof pendants and inliers within the Idaho batholith and Challis volcanic-plutonic complex, define the >200-km-long northwest-aligned Big Creek-Beaverhead belt. Sensitive highresolution ion microprobe (SHRIMP) U-Pb zircon dates on these igneous rocks provide direct evidence for the orientation and location of the Neoproterozoic-Paleozoic western Laurentian rift margin in the northern U.S. Cordillera. Dating delimits two discrete magmatic pulses at ca. 665-650 Ma and 500-485 Ma at the western and eastern ends, respectively, of this belt. Together with the nearby 685 Ma volcanic rocks of the Edwardsburg Formation, there is a 200 Ma history of recurrent extensional magmatic pulses along the belt. A similar history of recurrent uplift is reflected in the stratigraphic record of the associated miogeoclinal and cratonal platform basins, suggesting that the Big Creek-Beaverhead belt originated as a border fault during continental rift events. The magmatic belt is paired with the recurrently emergent Lemhi Arch and narrow miogeoclinal facies belts and it lies inboard of a northwest-striking narrow zone of thinned continental crust. These features define a northeast-extending upper-plate extensional system between southeast Washington and southeast Idaho that formed a segment of the Neoproterozoic-Paleozoic miogeocline. This segment was flanked on the north by the St. Mary-Moyie transform zone (south of a narrow southern Canadian upper-plate margin) and on the south by the Snake River transfer zone (north of a broad Great Basin lower-plate margin). These are the central segments of a zigzagshaped Cordilleran rift system of alternating northwest-striking extensional zones offset by northeast-striking transfers and transforms. The data substantiate polyphase rift and continental separation events that included (1) pre-and syn-Windermere rifting, (2) Windermere

  3. Field-trip guides to selected volcanoes and volcanic landscapes of the western United States



    The North American Cordillera is home to a greater diversity of volcanic provinces than any comparably sized region in the world. The interplay between changing plate-margin interactions, tectonic complexity, intra-crustal magma differentiation, and mantle melting have resulted in a wealth of volcanic landscapes.  Field trips in this guide book collection (published as USGS Scientific Investigations Report 2017–5022) visit many of these landscapes, including (1) active subduction-related arc volcanoes in the Cascade Range; (2) flood basalts of the Columbia Plateau; (3) bimodal volcanism of the Snake River Plain-Yellowstone volcanic system; (4) some of the world’s largest known ignimbrites from southern Utah, central Colorado, and northern Nevada; (5) extension-related volcanism in the Rio Grande Rift and Basin and Range Province; and (6) the eastern Sierra Nevada featuring Long Valley Caldera and the iconic Bishop Tuff.  Some of the field trips focus on volcanic eruptive and emplacement processes, calling attention to the fact that the western United States provides opportunities to examine a wide range of volcanological phenomena at many scales.The 2017 Scientific Assembly of the International Association of Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth’s Interior (IAVCEI) in Portland, Oregon, was the impetus to update field guides for many of the volcanoes in the Cascades Arc, as well as publish new guides for numerous volcanic provinces and features of the North American Cordillera. This collection of guidebooks summarizes decades of advances in understanding of magmatic and tectonic processes of volcanic western North America. These field guides are intended for future generations of scientists and the general public as introductions to these fascinating areas; the hope is that the general public will be enticed toward further exploration and that scientists will pursue further field-based research.

  4. Volcanic Ash Nephelometer Probe Project

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Advanced dropsondes that could effectively be guided through atmospheric regions of interest such as volcanic plumes may enable unprecedented observations of...

  5. Carboniferous rifted arcs leading to an archipelago of multiple arcs in the Beishan-Tianshan orogenic collages (NW China)

    Tian, Zhonghua; Xiao, Wenjiao; Windley, Brian F.; Zhang, Ji'en; Zhang, Zhiyong; Song, Dongfang


    The Beishan and East Tianshan Orogenic Collages in the southernmost Central Asian Orogenic Belt (CAOB) record the final stages of evolution of the Paleo-Asian Ocean. These collages and their constituent arcs have an important significance for resolving current controversies regarding their tectonic setting and age, consequent accretionary history of the southern CAOB, and the closure time of the Paleo-Asian Ocean. In this paper, we present our work on the southern Mazongshan arc and the northern Hongyanjing Basin in the Beishan Orogenic Collage (BOC), and our comparison with the Bogda arc and associated basins in the East Tianshan Orogenic Collage. Field relationships indicate that the Pochengshan fault defines the boundary between the arc and basin in the BOC. Volcanic rocks including basalts and rhyolites in the Mazongshan arc have bimodal calc-alkaline characteristics, an enrichment in large ion lithophile elements such as Rb, Ba, and Pb and depletion in high field-strength elements (e.g., Nb and Ta), which were probably developed in a subduction-related tectonic setting. We suggest that these bimodal calc-alkaline volcanic rocks formed in rifted arcs instead of post-orogenic rifts with mantle plume inputs. By making detailed geochemical comparisons between the Mazongshan arc and the Bogda arc to the west, we further propose that they are similar and both formed in arc rifts, and helped generate a Carboniferous archipelago of multiple arcs in the southern Paleo-Asian Ocean. These data and ideas enable us to postulate a new model for the tectonic evolution of the southern CAOB.

  6. Volcanic Eruptions and Climate

    Robock, A.


    Large volcanic eruptions inject sulfur gases into the stratosphere, which convert to sulfate aerosols with an e-folding residence time of about one year. The radiative and chemical effects of these aerosol clouds produce responses in the climate system. Observations and numerical models of the climate system show that volcanic eruptions produce global cooling and were the dominant natural cause of climate change for the past millennium, on timescales from annual to century. Major tropical eruptions produce winter warming of Northern Hemisphere continents for one or two years, while high latitude eruptions in the Northern Hemisphere weaken the Asian and African summer monsoon. The Toba supereruption 74,000 years ago caused very large climate changes, affecting human evolution. However, the effects did not last long enough to produce widespread glaciation. An episode of four large decadally-spaced eruptions at the end of the 13th century C.E. started the Little Ice Age. Since the Mt. Pinatubo eruption in the Philippines in 1991, there have been no large eruptions that affected climate, but the cumulative effects of small eruptions over the past decade had a small effect on global temperature trends. The June 13, 2011 Nabro eruption in Eritrea produced the largest stratospheric aerosol cloud since Pinatubo, and the most of the sulfur entered the stratosphere not by direct injection, but by slow lofting in the Asian summer monsoon circulation. Volcanic eruptions warn us that while stratospheric geoengineering could cool the surface, reducing ice melt and sea level rise, producing pretty sunsets, and increasing the CO2 sink, it could also reduce summer monsoon precipitation, destroy ozone, allowing more harmful UV at the surface, produce rapid warming when stopped, make the sky white, reduce solar power, perturb the ecology with more diffuse radiation, damage airplanes flying in the stratosphere, degrade astronomical observations, affect remote sensing, and affect

  7. Petrological and Geochemical characterization of central Chihuahua basalts: a possible local sign of rifting activity

    Espejel-Garcia, V. V.; Garcia-Rascon, M.; Villalobos-Aragon, A.; Morton-Bermea, O.


    The central part of the mexican state, Chihuahua, is the oriental border of the Sierra Madre Occidental (silicic large igneous province), which consist of series of ignimbrites divided into two volcanic groups of andesites and rhyolites. In the central region of Chihuahua, the volcanic rocks are now part of the Basin and Range, allowing the presence of mafic rocks in the lower areas. The study area is located approximately 200 km to the NW of Chihuahua city near to La Guajolota town, in the Namiquipa County. There are at least 5 outcrops of basalts to the west of the road, named Puerto de Lopez, Malpaises, El Tascate, Quebrada Honda, and Carrizalio, respectively. These outcrops have only been previously described by the Mexican Geologic Survey (SGM) as thin basaltic flows, with vesicles filled with quartz, and phenocrystals of labradorite, andesine, oligoclase and olivine. Petrologically, the basalts present different textures, from small phenocrysts of plagioclase in a very fine matrix to large, zoned and sometimes broken phenocrysts of plagioclase in a coarser matrix. All samples have olivine in an advanced state of alteration, iddingsite. The geochemical analyses report that these basaltic flows contain characteristics of rift basalts. The rocks have a normative olivine values from 5.78 to 27.26 and nepheline values from 0 to 2.34. In the TAS diagram the samples straddle the join between basalt and trachy-basalt, reflecting a high K2O content. The Mg# average is 0.297, a value that suggests that the basalts do not come from a primitive magma. The basalts have high values of Ba (945-1334 ppm), Cu (54-147 ppm), and Zn (123-615 ppm). The contents of Rb (23-57 ppm), Sr (659-810 ppm), Y (26-33 ppm), Zr (148-217 ppm) and Cr (79-98 ppm) are characteristics of rift basalts. Using discrimination diagrams, the basalts plot in the field of within plate, supporting the rifting origin. Outcrops of other basalts, at about 80 to 100 km to the east of the study area, Lomas El

  8. System of Volcanic activity



    Full Text Available A comparison is made among the systems of B. G.
    Escher (3, of R. W. van Bemmelen (1 and that of the author (4. In this
    connection, on the basis of Esclier's classification, the terms of "constructiv
    e " and "destructive" eruptions are introduced into the author's system and
    at the same time Escher's concept on the possible relation between the depth
    of magma-chamber and the measure of the gas-pressure is discussed briefly.
    Three complementary remarks to the first paper (4 011 the subject of system
    of volcanic activity are added.

  9. Kinematics of the Neogene Terror Rift: Constraints from calcite twinning strain in AND-1B core, McMurdo Ice Shelf

    Paulsen, T.; Wilson, T. J.; Demosthenous, C.; Millan, C.; Jarrard, R. D.; Laufer, A.


    Strain analyses of mechanically twinned calcite in veins and faults hosted by Neogene (13.6 Ma to 4.3 Ma) sedimentary and volcanic rocks recovered within the ANDRILL AND-1B drill core from the Terror Rift in the southern Ross Sea, Antarctica, yield prolate and oblate ellipsoids with principal shortening and extension strains ranging from 0.1% to 8.5%. The majority of samples show homogeneous coaxial strain predominantly characterized by subvertical shortening, which we attribute to lithostatic loading in an Andersonian normal faulting stress regime during sedimentary and ice sheet burial of the stratigraphic sequence. The overall paucity of a non-coaxial layer-parallel shortening signal in the AND-1B twin populations suggests that horizontal compressive stresses predicted by Neogene transtensional kinematic models for the rift system have been absent or of insufficient magnitude to cause a widespread noncoaxial strain overprint. Limited numbers of oriented samples yield a possible average ESE extension direction for the rift that is subparallel to other indicators of Neogene extension. The lack of horizontal shortening in the twin data suggests the Neogene Terror Rift system either lacks a strong longitudinal strike-slip component, or that spatial partitioning of strain controls the maximum shortening axes seen in rocks of this age.

  10. Anatomy of lithosphere necking during orthogonal rifting

    Nestola, Yago; Cavozzi, Cristian; Storti, Fabrizio


    The evolution of lithosphere necking is a fundamental parameter controlling the structural architecture and thermal-state of rifted margin. The necking shape depends on several parameters, including the extensional strain-rate and thermal layering of the lithosphere. Despite a large number of analogue and numerical modelling studies on lithosphere extension, a quantitative description of the evolution of necking through time is still lacking. We used analogue modelling to simulate in three-dimension the progression of lithosphere thinning and necking during orthogonal rifting. In our models we simulated a typical "cold and young" 4-layer lithosphere stratigraphy: brittle upper crust (loose quartz sand), ductile lower crust (silicon-barite mixture), brittle upper mantle (loose quartz sand), and ductile lower mantle (silicon-barite mixture). The experimental lithosphere rested on a glucose syrup asthenosphere. We monitored model evolution by periodic and coeval laser scanning of both the surface topography and the lithosphere base. After model completion, each of the four layers was removed and the top of the underlying layer was scanned. This technical approach allowed us to quantify the evolution in space and time of the thinning factors for both the whole lithosphere (βz) and the crust (γ). The area of incremental effective stretching (βy) parallel to the extensional direction was obtained from the βz maps.

  11. Graben formation during the Bárðarbunga rifting event in central Iceland

    Ruch, Joel


    On the 16th of August 2014, an intense seismic swarm was detected at the Bárðarbunga caldera (central Iceland), which migrated to the east and then to the northeast during the following days. The swarm, highlighting magma propagation pathway from the caldera, migrated laterally during the following two weeks over 40 km. By the end of August, a volcanic eruption had started along a north-south oriented fissure located ~45 km from the caldera. Here we focus on the near-field deformation related to the dike emplacement in the shallow crust, which generated in few days an 8 km long by 0.8 km wide graben (depression) structure. The new graben extends from the northern edge of the Vatnajökull glacier and to the north to the eruptive fissure. We analyze the temporal evolution of the graben by integrating structural mapping using multiple acquisitions of TerraSAR-X amplitude radar images, InSAR and ground-truth data with GPS and structural measurements. Pixel-offset tracking of radar amplitude images shows clearly the graben subsidence, directly above the intrusion pathway, of up to 6 meters in the satellite line-of-sight direction. We installed a GPS profile of 15 points across the graben in October 2014 and measured its depth up to 8 meters, relative to the flanks of the graben. Field structural observations show graben collapse structures that typically accompany dike intrusions, with two tilted blocks dipping toward the graben axis, bordered by two normal faults. Extensive fractures at the center of the graben and at the graben edges show a cumulative extension of ~8 meters. The formation of the graben was also accompanied by strong seismic activity locally, constraining the time frame period of the main graben formation subsidence. Our results show a rare case of a graben formation captured from space and from ground observations. Such structures are the dominant features along rift zones, however, their formation remain poorly understood. The results also provide

  12. The Climate and Human Impacts of Major Explosive Volcanism AD670-730, A Multi-proxy Assessment

    Gao, C.; Ludlow, F.


    Chronologically secure volcanic events can provide an important tool to improve ice core dating as well as our understanding of volcano-climate responses. However, there is a substantial lack of reference horizons for ice-core dating during the first millennium, excepting the Taupo (New Zealand, AD186×10) and Vesuvius (Italy, AD 79) eruptions. In this exploratory case-study, we use a total of 20 ice core records, 9 from the Arctic and 11 from the Antarctic, together with historical records to examine the occurrence and climatic impact of explosive volcanism, AD 670-730. Sulfate signals comparable in magnitude to the sizeable 1815 Tambora eruption are detected in all of the ice-core time series, with different cores attributing the timing of eruptions to AD 676×2, 688×2, or 700×2, respectively. Historical records of widespread frost damage, anomalously warm winters, drought, famine and mortality from Chinese, European and Middle Eastern chronicles suggest substantial climate and social perturbations during AD 677-685 and AD 699-709. The distinctive double-peak feature seen in the majority of the volcanic signals from both poles at AD 676×2 and AD 688×2 suggests that these signals may belong to the same eruption, with those cores dating the signals to c.AD 676 generally considered to have a more precise chronology. Combining the evidence from natural and historical anthropogenic records and taking into account uncertainties (e.g. resolution, dating accuracy) associated with individual ice cores, we propose that a (most-likely) low-latitude eruption took place around AD676, followed by another possible eruption around AD700, identifiable by the significant acidity in polar ice-caps and historical documents. Unique historical observations of 'blood rain' in Ireland (often associated with Saharan sand deposition, but also plausibly with iron and manganese-rich tephra falls) also suggest a high-latitude eruption (possibly Icelandic) at AD693, corresponding to a

  13. New insights into continental rifting from a damage rheology modeling

    Lyakhovsky, Vladimir; Segev, Amit; Weinberger, Ram; Schattner, Uri


    Previous studies have discussed how tectonic processes could produce relative tension to initiate and propagate rift zones and estimated the magnitude of the rift-driving forces. Both analytic and semi-analytic models as well as numerical simulations assume that the tectonic force required to initiate rifting is available. However, Buck (2004, 2006) estimated the minimum tectonic force to allow passive rifting and concluded that the available forces are probably not large enough for rifting of thick and strong lithosphere in the absence of basaltic magmatism (the "Tectonic Force" Paradox). The integral of the yielding stress needed for rifting over the thickness of the normal or thicker continental lithosphere are well above the available tectonic forces and tectonic rifting cannot happen (Buck, 2006). This conclusion is based on the assumption that the tectonic stress has to overcome simultaneously the yielding stress over the whole lithosphere thickness and ignore gradual weakening of the brittle rocks under long-term loading. In this study we demonstrate that the rifting process under moderate tectonic stretching is feasible due to gradual weakening and "long-term memory" of the heavily fractured brittle rocks, which makes it significantly weaker than the surrounding intact rock. This process provides a possible solution for the tectonic force paradox. We address these questions utilizing 3-D lithosphere-scale numerical simulations of the plate motion and faulting process base on the damage mechanics. The 3-D modeled volume consists of three main lithospheric layers: an upper layer of weak sediments, middle layer of crystalline crust and lower layer of the lithosphere mantle. Results of the modeling demonstrate gradual formation of the rift zone in the continental lithosphere with the flat layered structure. Successive formation of the rift system and associated seismicity pattern strongly depend not only on the applied tectonic force, but also on the healing

  14. Volcan Reventador's Unusual Umbrella

    Chakraborty, P.; Gioia, G.; Kieffer, S. W.


    In the past two decades, field observations of the deposits of volcanoes have been supplemented by systemmatic, and sometimes, opportunistic photographic documentation. Two photographs of the umbrella of the December 3, 2002 eruption of Volcan Reventador, Ecuador, reveal a prominently scalloped umbrella that is unlike any umbrella previously documented on a volcanic column. The material in the umbrella was being swept off a descending pyroclastic flow, and was, therefore, a co-ignimbrite cloud. We propose that the scallops are the result of a turbulent Rayleigh-Taylor (RT) instability with no precedents in volcanology. We ascribe the rare loss of buoyancy that drives this instability to the fact that the Reventador column fed on a cool co-ignimbrite cloud. On the basis of the observed wavelength of the scallops, we estimate a value for the eddy viscosity of the umbrella of 4000 ~m2/s. This value is consistent with a previously obtained lower bound (200 ~m2/s, K. Wohletz, priv. comm., 2005). We do not know the fate of the material in the umbrella subsequent to the photos. The analysis suggests that the umbrella was negatively buoyant. Field work on the co-ignimbrite deposits might reveal whether or not the material reimpacted, and if so, where and whether or not this material was involved in the hazardous flows that affected the main oil pipeline across Ecuador.

  15. Uranium series, volcanic rocks

    Vazquez, Jorge A.


    Application of U-series dating to volcanic rocks provides unique and valuable information about the absolute timing of crystallization and differentiation of magmas prior to eruption. The 238U–230Th and 230Th-226Ra methods are the most commonly employed for dating the crystallization of mafic to silicic magmas that erupt at volcanoes. Dates derived from the U–Th and Ra–Th methods reflect crystallization because diffusion of these elements at magmatic temperatures is sluggish (Cherniak 2010) and diffusive re-equilibration is insignificant over the timescales (less than or equal to 10^5 years) typically associated with pre-eruptive storage of nearly all magma compositions (Cooper and Reid 2008). Other dating methods based on elements that diffuse rapidly at magmatic temperatures, such as the 40Ar/39Ar and (U–Th)/He methods, yield dates for the cooling of magma at the time of eruption. Disequilibrium of some short-lived daughters of the uranium series such as 210Po may be fractionated by saturation of a volatile phase and can be employed to date magmatic gas loss that is synchronous with volcanic eruption (e.g., Rubin et al. 1994).

  16. Volcanic Eruptions and Climate

    LeGrande, Allegra N.; Anchukaitis, Kevin J.


    Volcanic eruptions represent some of the most climatically important and societally disruptive short-term events in human history. Large eruptions inject ash, dust, sulfurous gases (e.g. SO2, H2S), halogens (e.g. Hcl and Hbr), and water vapor into the Earth's atmosphere. Sulfurous emissions principally interact with the climate by converting into sulfate aerosols that reduce incoming solar radiation, warming the stratosphere and altering ozone creation, reducing global mean surface temperature, and suppressing the hydrological cycle. In this issue, we focus on the history, processes, and consequences of these large eruptions that inject enough material into the stratosphere to significantly affect the climate system. In terms of the changes wrought on the energy balance of the Earth System, these transient events can temporarily have a radiative forcing magnitude larger than the range of solar, greenhouse gas, and land use variability over the last millennium. In simulations as well as modern and paleoclimate observations, volcanic eruptions cause large inter-annual to decadal-scale changes in climate. Active debates persist concerning their role in longer-term (multi-decadal to centennial) modification of the Earth System, however.

  17. Mylonitic volcanics near Puging, Upper Siang district, Arunachal Pradesh: Evidence of oblique-slip thrusting

    T K Goswami; P Bhattacharyya; D Bezbaruah


    The Abor volcanics of the continental flood basalt affinity are extensively exposed in different parts of the Siang valley. These are associated with Yinkiong Group of rocks of Paleocene–Eocene age and represent syn-sedimentary volcanism in a rift setting. Subsequent folding and thrusting of the Siyom and Rikor sequences above the Yinkiong Group of rocks represent changes from syn-to-post collisionalbrittle-ductile tectonic episodes. Mylonitic Abor volcanics in the thrust contacts are studied at several locations in the north and south of Puging in the Siang valley. Both the Abor volcanics and associated Rikor and Yinkiong Group of rocks preserve meso to micro-scale fabric asymmetries indicating that the thrust contacts are shear zones of brittle-ductile nature containing mylonitic textures of high shear strain.Two distinct hitherto unrecognised shear zones in the north and south of Puging are named as North Puging Shear Zone (NPSZ) and South Puging Shear Zone (SPSZ). The kinematic indicators along the thrust contact indicate oblique slip thrusting of the Rikor and Siyom thrust sheets above the Yinkiong Group of rocks. This paper provides field evidence proving that the compression due the Burmese plate made oblique slip thrusting and zones of mylonitised volcanics possible and associated metasediments were formed. The kinematic indicators in the NPSZ and SPSZ respectively indicate top-to-SSE and top-to-NNW sense of shears.

  18. Mobilization of arsenic and other naturally occurring contaminants in groundwater of the Main Ethiopian Rift aquifers.

    Rango, Tewodros; Vengosh, Avner; Dwyer, Gary; Bianchini, Gianluca


    This study investigates the mechanisms of arsenic (As) and other naturally occurring contaminants (F(-), U, V, B, and Mo) mobilization from Quaternary sedimentary aquifers of the Main Ethiopian Rift (MER) and their enrichment in the local groundwater. The study is based on systematic measurements of major and trace elements as well as stable oxygen and hydrogen isotopes in groundwater, coupled with geochemical and mineralogical analyses of the aquifer rocks. The Rift Valley aquifer is composed of rhyolitic volcanics and Quaternary lacustrine sediments. X-ray fluorescence (XRF) results revealed that MER rhyolites (ash, tuff, pumice and ignimbrite) and sediments contain on average 72 wt. % and 65 wt. % SiO2, respectively. Petrographic studies of the rhyolites indicate predominance of volcanic glass, sanidine, pyroxene, Fe-oxides and plagioclase. The As content in the lacustrine sediments (mean = 6.6 mg/kg) was higher than that of the rhyolites (mean: 2.5 mg/kg). The lacustrine aquifers of the Ziway-Shala basin in the northern part of MER were identified as high As risk zones, where mean As concentration in groundwater was 22.4 ± 33.5 (range of 0.60-190 μg/L) and 54% of samples had As above the WHO drinking water guideline value of 10 μg/L. Field As speciation measurements showed that most of the groundwater samples contain predominantly (~80%) arsenate-As(V) over arsenite-As(III) species. The As speciation together with field data of redox potential (mean Eh = +73 ± 65 mV) and dissolved-O2 (6.6 ± 2.2 mg/L) suggest that the aquifer is predominantly oxidative. Water-rock interactions, including the dissolution of volcanic glass produces groundwater with near-neutral to alkaline pH (range 6.9-8.9), predominance of Na-HCO3 ions, and high concentration of SiO2 (mean: 85.8 ± 11.3 mg/L). The groundwater data show high positive correlation of As with Na, HCO3, U, B, V, and Mo (R(2) > 0.5; p ~8, reflecting the pH-dependence of their mobilization. Based on the

  19. Geochemical and geochronological constraints on the origin and evolution of rocks in the active Woodlark Rift of Papua New Guinea

    Zirakparvar, Nasser Alexander

    fragments of an active margin'. This chapter uses a panoply of geochronological (U-Pb zircon) and geochemical (Lu-Hf and Sm-Nd isotopes, trace/REEs, and major elements) tools to investigate the origin the major lithostratigraphic units in the Woodlark Rift. Important findings in this chapter include the establishment of a tectonic link between sialic metamorphic rocks in the Woodlark Rift and the remnants of a Late Cretaceous aged bi-modal volcanic province along Australia's northern Queensland coast. This link is important because it identifies another rifted fragment of the former Australian continental margin in Gondwana, and demonstrates the complexity of recognizing the dispersed fragments of active margins. Another important finding of this chapter is that Quaternary aged high silica rhyolites erupted in the western Woodlark Rift have mantle isotopic and geochemical signatures, and are therefore not the extrusive equivalents of partially melted metamorphic rocks found in the lower plates of large metamorphic core complexes. This is important because it signifies that lithospheric rupture has already occurred, despite the fact that mid-ocean ridge basalts are not yet being erupted and there are still topographically prominent metamorphic core complexes in the region. This chapter is not yet published, but is being prepared for submission to Gondwana Research. The third chapter is entitled 'Zircon growth in rapidly evolving plate boundary zones: Evidence from the active Woodlark Rift of Papua New Guinea'. The original purpose of this chapter was simply to use U-Pb dating of zircons from felsic and intermediate gneisses in the Woodlark Rift to understand the history of rocks from (U)HP terranes that don't preserve the (U)HP metamorphic paragenesis. It was soon realized that the types of U-Pb zircon analyses typically performed on a SIMS instrument were going to be insufficient to fully understand the geochemical and geochronological records within zircons from these

  20. Rifting and lower crustal reflectivity: A case study of the intracratonic Dniepr-Donets rift zone, Ukraine

    Lyngsie, Stig B.; Thybo, Hans; Lang, Rasmus


    Intracratonic rifting, caused by late Devonian extensional stresses in the East European Craton, created the largest rift zone in Europe, the Pripyat-Dniepr-Donets rift (southeast Ukraine). The rift basin is approximately 2000 km long, up to 170 km wide, and 22 km deep. Wide-angle refraction and reflection seismic data from the Donbas Basin deep seismic Refraction and Reflection Experiments (DOBRE'99) project together with gravity and magnetic data are analyzed for the structure and evolution of the Donbas Fold Belt, which is the uplifted and deformed part of the Dniepr-Donets Basin. The seismic data are used for identification of large-scale crustal structures and modeling of the seismic velocities of the crust and uppermost mantle. A ray-trace-based velocity and density model is derived by joint inversion of gravity and traveltime data. The inversion result reveals a zone of high density and velocity beneath the basin at middle to lower crustal levels, slightly offset to the NE of the rift axis. Full waveform synthetic seismograms, matching the observed data, show high-amplitude and low-frequency arrivals from this high-density body as well as from the Moho. We interpret the high-amplitude, low-frequency signals as reflections from layered magmatic rocks, which intruded into the ductile lower crust during the main rift phase and subsequently were sorted by fractional crystallization. The intrusive material thickened the lower crust by approximately 50%. This may explain the enigmatic flat Moho topography across the rift zone which has been significantly stretched (β = 1.3). The rifting initiated in the late Devonian (Frasnien) as a consequence of back-arc extension in relation to subduction of the Paleo-Tethys Ocean. The subducting oceanic slab may have enriched the mantle with volatiles and created convection, leading to strong partial melting, upwelling, and continued rifting in the Famennien. We interpret the asymmetrical rift geometry as a combination of

  1. Hierarchical segmentation of the Malawi Rift: The influence of inherited lithospheric heterogeneity and kinematics in the evolution of continental rifts

    Laó-Dávila, Daniel A.; Al-Salmi, Haifa S.; Abdelsalam, Mohamed G.; Atekwana, Estella A.


    We used detailed analysis of Shuttle Radar Topography Mission-digital elevation model and observations from aeromagnetic data to examine the influence of inherited lithospheric heterogeneity and kinematics in the segmentation of largely amagmatic continental rifts. We focused on the Cenozoic Malawi Rift, which represents the southern extension of the Western Branch of the East African Rift System. This north trending rift traverses Precambrian and Paleozoic-Mesozoic structures of different orientations. We found that the rift can be hierarchically divided into first-order and second-order segments. In the first-order segmentation, we divided the rift into Northern, Central, and Southern sections. In its Northern Section, the rift follows Paleoproterozoic and Neoproterozoic terrains with structural grain that favored the localization of extension within well-developed border faults. The Central Section occurs within Mesoproterozoic-Neoproterozoic terrain with regional structures oblique to the rift extent. We propose that the lack of inherited lithospheric heterogeneity favoring extension localization resulted in the development of the rift in this section as a shallow graben with undeveloped border faults. In the Southern Section, Mesoproterozoic-Neoproterozoic rocks were reactivated and developed the border faults. In the second-order segmentation, only observed in the Northern Section, we divided the section into five segments that approximate four half-grabens/asymmetrical grabens with alternating polarities. The change of polarity coincides with flip-over full-grabens occurring within overlap zones associated with ~150 km long alternating border faults segments. The inherited lithospheric heterogeneity played the major role in facilitating the segmentation of the Malawi Rift during its opening resulting from extension.

  2. Volatile content of Hawaiian magmas and volcanic vigor

    Blaser, A. P.; Gonnermann, H. M.; Ferguson, D. J.; Plank, T. A.; Hauri, E. H.; Houghton, B. F.; Swanson, D. A.


    We test the hypothesis that magma supply to Kīlauea volcano, Hawai'i may be affected by magma volatile content. We find that volatile content and magma flow from deep source to Kīlauea's summit reservoirs are non-linearly related. For example, a 25-30% change in volatiles leads to a near two-fold increase in magma supply. Hawaiian volcanism provides an opportunity to develop and test hypotheses concerning dynamic and geochemical behavior of hot spot volcanism on different time scales. The Pu'u 'Ō'ō-Kupaianaha eruption (1983-present) is thought to be fed by essentially unfettered magma flow from the asthenosphere into a network of magma reservoirs at approximately 1-4 km below Kīlauea's summit, and from there into Kīlauea's east rift zone, where it erupts. Because Kīlauea's magma becomes saturated in CO2 at about 40 km depth, most CO2 is thought to escape buoyantly from the magma, before entering the east rift zone, and instead is emitted at the summit. Between 2003 and 2006 Kīlauea's summit inflated at unusually high rates and concurrently CO2emissions doubled. This may reflect a change in the balance between magma supply to the summit and outflow to the east rift zone. It remains unknown what caused this surge in magma supply or what controls magma supply to Hawaiian volcanoes in general. We have modeled two-phase magma flow, coupled with H2O-CO2 solubility, to investigate the effect of changes in volatile content on the flow of magma through Kīlauea's magmatic plumbing system. We assume an invariant magma transport capacity from source to vent over the time period of interest. Therefore, changes in magma flow rate are a consequence of changes in magma-static and dynamic pressure throughout Kīlauea's plumbing system. We use measured summit deformation and CO2 emissions as observational constraints, and find from a systematic parameter analysis that even modest increases in volatiles reduce magma-static pressures sufficiently to generate a 'surge' in

  3. Temporal and geochemical constraints on active volcanism in southeastern Papua New Guinea

    Catalano, J. P.; Baldwin, S.; Fitzgerald, P. G.; Webb, L. E.; Hollocher, K.


    Active volcanism in southeastern Papua New Guinea occurs on the Papuan Peninsula (Mt. Lamington and Mt. Victory), in the Woodlark Rift (Dobu Island, SE Goodenough Island, and Western Fergusson Island), and in the Woodlark Basin. In the Woodlark Basin seafloor spreading is active and decompression melting of the mantle produces basalts. However, the cause of volcanism on the Papuan Peninsula and immediately west of active seafloor spreading rift tip in the Woodlark Basin is controversial. Previous studies have suggested active volcanism there results from 1) southward subduction of Solomon Sea lithosphere at the Trobriand Trough or 2) decompression melting as the lithosphere is extended and eventually ruptures. To evaluate these possibilities 20 samples were collected from a bimodal basalt-rhyolite suite in the D’Entrecasteaux Islands approximately 80 km west of the sea floor spreading rift tip. Siliceous ash flow tuffs on Dobu Island, Sanaroa Island, and Eastern Fergusson Island consist of sanidine/anorthoclase + Fe/Ti oxides (illmenite/ magnetite) ± quartz ± nepheline ± clinopyroxene ± xenocrystic olivine. Sanidine and K-feldspar from these ash flow tuffs yielded flat age spectra with 40Ar/39Ar isochron ages of 0.008 ± 0.002 Ma and 0.553 ± 0.001 Ma. ICP-MS trace and REE geochemistry on felsic rocks from Dobu Island and Eastern Fergusson Island yielded multi-element diagrams with enriched incompatible elements, and corresponding negative Nb, Sr, Eu, and Ti anomalies. In contrast, mafic volcanics from SE Goodenough Island are comprised of plagioclase + olivine + Fe/Ti oxides ± orthopyroxene ± clinopyroxene ± hornblende ± biotite. Biotite yielded a 40Ar/39Ar isochron age of 0.376 ± 0.05 Ma. MORB-normalized multi-element diagrams of mafic rocks from SE Goodenough Island are LREE-enriched patterns with negative Nb and positive Sr anomalies. In comparison, multi-element diagrams from previous work on mafic rocks from the New Britain arc to the north also

  4. Magma-compensated crustal thinning in continental rift zones.

    Thybo, H; Nielsen, C A


    Continental rift zones are long, narrow tectonic depressions in the Earth's surface where the entire lithosphere has been modified in extension. Rifting can eventually lead to rupture of the continental lithosphere and creation of new oceanic lithosphere or, alternatively, lead to formation of wide sedimentary basins around failed rift zones. Conventional models of rift zones include three characteristic features: surface manifestation as an elongated topographic trough, Moho shallowing due to crustal thinning, and reduced seismic velocity in the uppermost mantle due to decompression melting or heating from the Earth's interior. Here we demonstrate that only the surface manifestation is observed at the Baikal rift zone, whereas the crustal and mantle characteristics can be ruled out by a new seismic profile across southern Lake Baikal in Siberia. Instead we observe a localized zone in the lower crust which has exceptionally high seismic velocity and is highly reflective. We suggest that the expected Moho uplift was compensated by magmatic intrusion into the lower crust, producing the observed high-velocity zone. This finding demonstrates a previously unknown role for magmatism in rifting processes with significant implications for estimation of stretching factors and modelling of sedimentary basins around failed rift structures.

  5. Strain Localisation at Rift Segment Boundaries: An Example from the Bocana Transfer Zone in Central Baja California, Mexico

    Seiler, C.; Gleadow, A. J.; Kohn, B. P.


    pre-rift strata in this area. The BTZ itself is characterized by two en echelon WNW-ESE striking dextral-oblique transfer faults with a significant down-to-the-NNE extensional component. Strain is transferred from the Libertad breakaway fault onto the transfer faults over a distance of >20km through a network of interacting normal, oblique and strike-slip faults. The shape, location and orientation of the main faults were strongly influenced by pre-existing rheological heterogeneities. Major normal faults are parallel to either the Mesozoic metamorphic foliation or Cretaceous intrusive contacts, and developed where the foliation was at a high angle to the extension direction. In contrast, the oblique-slip faults of the BTZ formed parallel to the metamorphic foliation where formlines are at a small angle to the regional extension direction. Compared to other, less well-understood accommodation zones in the Gulf of California rift, the BTZ shows a distinct lack of volcanic activity, which may help explain the different exposure and structural expression of the various segment boundaries.

  6. Facies, stratal and stacking patterns of syn-rift sequences along present-day and fossil hyperextended rifted margins

    Ribes, Charlotte; Epin, Marie-Eva; Gillard, Morgane; Chenin, Pauline; Ghienne, Jean-Francois; Manatschal, Gianreto; Karner, Garry D.; Johnson, Christopher A.


    Research on the formation and evolution of deep-water rifted margins has undergone a major paradigm shift in recent years. An increasing number of studies of present-day and fossil rifted margins allows us to identify and characterize the architecture of hyperextended rifted margins. However, at present, little is known about the depositional environments, sedimentary facies and stacking and stratal patterns in syn-rift sequences within these domains. In this context, characterizing and understanding the spatial and temporal evolution of the stratal and stacking patterns is a new challenge. The syn-rift sequence at rifted margins is deposited during the initial stages of stretching to the onset of oceanic accretion and comprises pre-, syn- and post-kinematic deposits along the margin. A difficulty arises from the fact that the observed stratigraphic geometries and facies relationships result from the complex interplay between sediment supply and creation of accommodation, which in turn are controlled by regional synchronous events (i.e. crustal necking and onset of seafloor spreading) and diachronous events (i.e. migration of deformation during rifting, lags in sediment input to the distal margin). These parameters are poorly constrained in hyperextended rift systems. Indeed, the complex structural evolution of hyperextended systems include an evolution from initially distributed to localized extension (i.e. necking) and the development of poly-phase in-sequence and/or out of sequence extensional faulting associated with mantle exhumation and magmatic activity. This multiphase structural evolution can generate complex accommodation patterns over a highly structured top basement but can only be recognized if there is sufficient sediment input to record the events. In our presentation, we show preliminary results for fossil Alpine Tethys margins exposed in the Alps and seismic examples of the present-day deep water rifted margins offshore Australian-Antarctica, East

  7. Friction in volcanic environments

    Kendrick, Jackie E.; Lavallée, Yan


    Volcanic landscapes are amongst the most dynamic on Earth and, as such, are particularly susceptible to failure and frictional processes. In rocks, damage accumulation is frequently accompanied by the release of seismic energy, which has been shown to accelerate in the approach to failure on both a field and laboratory scale. The point at which failure occurs is highly dependent upon strain-rate, which also dictates the slip-zone properties that pertain beyond failure, in scenarios such as sector collapse and pyroclastic flows as well as the ascent of viscous magma. High-velocity rotary shear (HVR) experiments have provided new opportunities to overcome the grand challenge of understanding faulting processes during volcanic phenomena. Work on granular ash material demonstrates that at ambient temperatures, ash gouge behaves according to Byerlee's rule at low slip velocities, but is slip-weakening, becoming increasingly lubricating as slip ensues. In absence of ash along a slip plane, rock-rock friction induces cataclasis and heating which, if sufficient, may induce melting (producing pseudotachylyte) and importantly, vesiculation. The viscosity of the melt, so generated, controls the subsequent lubrication or resistance to slip along the fault plane thanks to non-Newtonian suspension rheology. The shear-thinning behaviour and viscoelasticity of frictional melts yield a tendency for extremely unstable slip, and occurrence of frictional melt fragmentation. This velocity-dependence acts as an important feedback mechanism on the slip plane, in addition to the bulk composition, mineralogy and glass content of the magma, that all influence frictional behaviour. During sector collapse events and in pyroclastic density currents it is the frictional properties of the rocks and ash that, in-part, control the run-out distance and associated risk. In addition, friction plays an important role in the eruption of viscous magmas: In the conduit, the rheology of magma is integral

  8. Tectonic Framework of the Kachchh Rift Basin

    Talwani, P.; Gangopadhyay, A. K.


    Evaluation of available geological data has allowed us to determine the tectonic framework of the Kachchh rift basin (KRB), the host to the 1819 Kachchh (MW 7.8), 1956 Anjar ( M 6.0) and the recent January 26, 2001 Bhachau (MW 7.6) earthquakes. The ~ 500 km x 200 km east-west trending KRB was formed during the Mesozoic following the break-up of Gondwanaland. It is bounded to the north and south by the Nagar Parkar and Kathiawar faults which separate it from the Precambrian granitic rocks of the Indian craton. The eastern border is the Radanpur-Barmer arch (defined by an elongate belt of gravity highs) which separates it from the early Cretaceous Cambay rift basin. KRB extends ~ 150 km offshore to its western boundary, the continental shelf. Following India's collision with Eurasia, starting ~ 50 MY ago, there was a stress reversal, from an extensional to the (currently N-S) compressional regime. Various geological observations attest to continuous tectonic activity within the KRB. Mesozoic sediments were uplifted and folded and then intruded by Deccan trap basalt flows in late Cretaceous. Other evidence of continuous tectonic activity include seismically induced soft sediment deformation features in the Upper Jurassic Katrol formation on the Kachchh Mainland and in the Holocene sequences in the Great Rann. Pleistocene faulting in the fluvial sequence along the Mahi River (in the bordering Cambay rift) and minor uplift during late Quaternary at Nal Sarovar, prehistoric and historic seismicity associated with surface deformation further attest to ongoing tectonic activity. KRB has responded to N-S compressional stress regime by the formation of east-west trending folds associated with Allah Bund, Kachchh Mainland, Banni, Vigodi, Katrol Hills and Wagad faults. The Allah Bund, Katrol Hill and Kachchh Mainland faults were associated with the 1819, 1956 and 2001 earthquakes. Northeast trending Median High, Bhuj fault and Rajkot-Lathi lineament cut across the east

  9. Biogeochemistry of Kenyan Rift Valley Lake Sediments

    Grewe, Sina; Kallmeyer, Jens


    The numerous lakes in the Kenyan Rift Valley show strong hydrochemical differences due to their varying geologic settings. There are freshwater lakes with a low alkalinity like Lake Naivasha on the one hand and very salt-rich lakes with high pH values like Lake Logipi on the other. It is known that the underlying lake sediments are influenced by the lake chemistry and by the microorganisms in the sediment. The aim of this work is to provide a biogeochemical characterization of the lake sediments and to use these data to identify the mechanisms that control lake chemistry and to reconstruct the biogeochemical evolution of each lake. The examined rift lakes were Lakes Logipi and Eight in the Suguta Valley, Lakes Baringo and Bogoria south of the valley, as well as Lakes Naivasha, Oloiden, and Sonachi on the Kenyan Dome. The porewater was analysed for different ions and hydrogen sulphide. Additionally, alkalinity and salinity of the lake water were determined as well as the cell numbers in the sediment, using fluorescent microscopy. The results of the porewater analysis show that the overall chemistry differs considerably between the lakes. In some lakes, concentrations of fluoride, chloride, sulphate, and/or hydrogen sulphide show strong concentration gradients with depth, whereas in other lakes the concentrations show only minor variations. Fluoride is present in all lakes; the lowest concentration is found in Lake Oloiden (60 - 90 mg/l), the highest one in Lake Bogoria (1,025 - 1,930 mg/l). The lakes show also large differences in sulphate concentrations. The values vary between 2 mg/l in Lake Baringo and 15,250 mg/l in Lake Eight. In all cores, sulphate concentration does not change significantly with depth; however, there is a distinct peak in each core, raising the question of synchronicity. As expected, chloride concentrations correlate with total salinity. There is no hydrogen sulphide present in the porewater of Lakes Naivasha, Baringo, and Oloiden, whereas in

  10. Tectonic evolution of the Western Eger rift: a tale of two faults

    Tomasek, Jan; Kley, Jonas; Fischer, Tomáš; Štěpančíková, Petra


    The Eger Rift and Cheb basin in northwestern Bohemia are part of the European Cenozoic Rift System. They are associated with earthquake swarms, voluminous CO2 outgassing and Quaternary mantle-derived volcanism. The Eger Graben, of which the Cheb basin is traditionally considered a subbasin, contains a Cenozoic volcano-sedimentary record no thicker than 500 m. The structure of the extensional system is dominated by two large faults: (1) the ENE-striking Krušné Hory Fault (KHF), which delimits the northwestern shoulder of the Eger rift and has accommodated tilting and uplift of the Erzgebirge, creating a present day elevation difference of 700 m; (2) the NNW-striking Mariánské Lázně Fault (MLF), which is the master fault of the Cheb basin. First-order structural relationships indicate that the MLF has cross-cut the Eger rift at right angle and offset it with dominantly normal sense of motion. These relationships suggest that activity on the MLF was accentuated late in the history of the rift, around early Pliocene time, reflecting a fundamental change of the governing stress field. We aim to constrain, in conjunction with a Czech companion project focussing on tectonic geomorphology and seismology, the tectonic evolution of the two basins, and in particular the kinematics and timing of the Krušné Hory (Erzgebirge) and Mariánské Lázně bounding faults over Late Cenozoic time. This will be done by modelling the subsidence of the basins from stratigraphic and structural data. Rift shoulder uplift, exhumation and fault offsets will be constrained by low-T thermochronology, especially (U-Th)/He on apatite (AHe). 2D cross-sections and restorable structural 3D models will delimit the range of possible fault geometries and constrain the magnitude of fault displacements, their gradients and the deep architecture of the large faults. The Cheb basin forms an approximate semi-ellipse in map view, suggesting it is a half-graben bounded by a listric, WSW-dipping MLF

  11. Volcanic studies at Katmai


    The Continental Scientific Drilling Program (CSDP) is a national effort supported by the Department of Energy, the US Geological Survey, and the National Science Foundation. One of the projects proposed for the CSDP consists of drilling a series of holes in Katmai National Park in Alaska to give a third dimension to the model of the 1912 eruption of Novarupta, and to investigate the processes of explosive volcanism and hydrothermal transport of metals (Eichelberger et al., 1988). The proposal for research drilling at Katmai states that ``the size, youth, elevated temperature, and simplicity of the Novarupta vent make it a truly unique scientific target.`` The National Park Service (NPS), which has jurisdiction, is sympathetic to aims of the study. However, NPS wishes to know whether Katmai is indeed uniquely suited to the research, and has asked the Interagency Coordinating Group to support an independent assessment of this claim. NPS suggested the National Academy of Sciences as an appropriate organization to conduct the assessment. In response, the National Research Council -- the working arm of the Academy -- established, under the aegis of its US Geodynamics Committee, a panel whose specific charge states: ``The proposed investigation at Katmai has been extensively reviewed for scientific merit by the three sponsoring and participating agencies. Thus, the scientific merit of the proposed drilling at Katmai is not at issue. The panel will review the proposal for scientific drilling at Katmai and prepare a short report addressing the specific question of the degree to which it is essential that the drilling be conducted at Katmai as opposed to volcanic areas elsewhere in the world.``

  12. Quaternary basaltic volcanism in the Payenia volcanic province, Argentina

    Søager, Nina

    The extensive Quaternary volcanism in the Payenia volcanic province, Mendoza, Argentina, is investigated in this study by major and trace element analyses, Sr, Nd, Hf and Pb-isotopic analyses and Zr-Hf isotope dilution data on samples from almost the entire province. The samples are mainly...... in basalts from all the studied volcanic fields in Payenia is signs of lower crustal contamination indicating assimilation of, in some cases, large amounts of trace element depleted, mafic, plagioclase-bearing rocks. The northern Payenia is dominated by backarc basalts erupted between late Pliocene to late...

  13. Rift Valley fever: the Nigerian story

    Adewale A. Adeyeye


    Full Text Available Rift Valley fever (RVF is an arthropod-borne zoonotic disease of livestock. It is characterised by fever, salivation, abdominal pain, diarrhoea, mucopurulent to bloody nasal discharge, abortion, rapid decrease in milk production and death in animals. Infected humans experience an influenza-like illness that is characterised by fever, malaise, headaches, nausea and epigastric pain followed by recovery, although mortality can occur. RVF was thought to be a disease of sub-Saharan Africa but with the outbreaks in Egypt and the Arabian Peninsula, it may be extending its range further afield. Virological and serological evidence indicates that the virus exists in Nigeria and, with the warning signal sent by international organisations to countries in Africa about an impending outbreak, co-ordinated research between veterinarians and physicians in Nigeria is advocated.

  14. An epidemiological model of Rift Valley fever

    Nicole P. Leahy


    Full Text Available We present and explore a novel mathematical model of the epidemiology of Rift Valley Fever (RVF. RVF is an Old World, mosquito-borne disease affecting both livestock and humans. The model is an ordinary differential equation model for two populations of mosquito species, those that can transmit vertically and those that cannot, and for one livestock population. We analyze the model to find the stability of the disease-free equlibrium and test which model parameters affect this stability most significantly. This model is the basis for future research into the predication of future outbreaks in the Old World and the assessment of the threat of introduction into the New World.

  15. Regional magnetic anomaly constraints on continental rifting

    Vonfrese, R. R. B.; Hinze, W. J.; Olivier, R.; Bentley, C. R.


    Radially polarized MAGSAT anomalies of North and South America, Europe, Africa, India, Australia and Antarctica demonstrate remarkably detailed correlation of regional magnetic lithospheric sources across rifted margins when plotted on a reconstruction of Pangea. These major magnetic features apparently preserve their integrity until a superimposed metamorphoric event alters the magnitude and pattern of the anomalies. The longevity of continental scale magnetic anomalies contrasts markedly with that of regional gravity anomalies which tend to reflect predominantly isostatic adjustments associated with neo-tectonism. First observed as a result of NASA's magnetic satellite programs, these anomalies provide new and fundamental constraints on the geologic evolution and dynamics of the continents and oceans. Accordingly, satellite magnetic observations provide a further tool for investigating continental drift to compliment other lines of evidence in paleoclimatology, paleontology, paleomagnetism, and studies of the radiometric ages and geometric fit of the continents.

  16. Late Paleozoic rift-related basalts from central Inner Mongolia, China

    Zhu, Wenping; Tian, Wei; Wei, Chunjing; Shao, Ji-an; Fu, Bin; Fanning, C. Mark; Chen, Mimi; Wang, Bin


    Late Paleozoic basaltic volcanism widely occurred in central Inner Mongolia, the southeastern part of the Central Asia Orogenic Blet (CAOB). Three volcanic pulses are identified by ion microprobe (SHRIMP II) zircon U-Pb analysis, which are Late Carboniferous (ca. 315 Ma), the latest Carboniferous (ca. 303 Ma) and early Permian (ca. 284 Ma). Basalts in the earliest stage are characterized by flat HREE, depletion in Nb and Ta, MORB-like Th/Yb ratios and depleted mantle (DM)-like Hf isotopic ratios. These are similar to forearc basalts, that have been generated by melting of a fluxed depleted mantle in an extensional environment. The latest Carboniferous basalts (sample D1363) have no Zr-Hf anomalies, relatively radiogenic Hf isotopic ratios (εHf(t) = +12.1 to +19.7) and high δ18O values up to 8.5‰, VSMOW. These are likely to be magmas originated from decompressional melting of a depleted mantle that interacted with ocean floor pillow basalts during their ascending through the crust. The early Permian sample D1380 have variable 206Pb/238U zircon ages with an interpreted magma crystallization age of 284.4 ± 2.5 Ma. These zircons have scattered Hf isotope (εHf(t) = +5 to +14) and δ18O (1.8-11.0‰, VSMOW), which suggest the involvement of a relatively enriched mantle source. Overall the temporal evolution of the Late Paleozoic basaltic volcanism from central Inner Mongolia suggests a rift-related tectonic setting.


    Perry, F. V.; Crowe, G. A.; Valentine, G. A.; Bowker, L. M.


    This report synthesizes the results of volcanism studies conducted by scientists at the Los Alamos National Laboratory and collaborating institutions on behalf of the Department of Energy's Yucca Mountain Project. Chapter 1 introduces the volcanism issue for the Yucca Mountain site and provides the reader with an overview of the organization, content, and significant conclusions of this report. The hazard of future basaltic volcanism is the primary topic of concern including both events that intersect a potential repository and events that occur near or within the waste isolation system of a repository. Future volcanic events cannot be predicted with certainty but instead are estimated using formal methods of probabilistic volcanic hazard assessment (PVHA). Chapter 2 describes the volcanic history of the Yucca Mountain region (YMR) and emphasizes the Pliocene and Quaternary volcanic record, the interval of primary concern for volcanic risk assessment. The distribution, eruptive history, and geochronology of Plio-Quaternary basalt centers are described by individual center emphasizing the younger postcaldera basalt (<5 Ma). The Lathrop Wells volcanic center is described in detail because it is the youngest basalt center in the YMR. The age of the Lathrop Wells center is now confidently determined to be about 75 thousand years old. Chapter 3 describes the tectonic setting of the YMR and presents and assesses the significance of multiple alternative tectonic models. The distribution of Pliocene and Quaternary basaltic volcanic centers is evaluated with respect to tectonic models for detachment, caldera, regional and local rifting, and the Walker Lane structural zone. Geophysical data are described for the YMR and are used as an aid to understand the distribution of past basaltic volcanic centers and possible future magmatic processes. Chapter 4 discusses the petrologic and geochemical features of basaltic volcanism in the YMR, the southern Great Basin and the


    Perry, F. V.; Crowe, G. A.; Valentine, G. A.; Bowker, L. M.


    This report synthesizes the results of volcanism studies conducted by scientists at the Los Alamos National Laboratory and collaborating institutions on behalf of the Department of Energy's Yucca Mountain Project. Chapter 1 introduces the volcanism issue for the Yucca Mountain site and provides the reader with an overview of the organization, content, and significant conclusions of this report. The hazard of future basaltic volcanism is the primary topic of concern including both events that intersect a potential repository and events that occur near or within the waste isolation system of a repository. Future volcanic events cannot be predicted with certainty but instead are estimated using formal methods of probabilistic volcanic hazard assessment (PVHA). Chapter 2 describes the volcanic history of the Yucca Mountain region (YMR) and emphasizes the Pliocene and Quaternary volcanic record, the interval of primary concern for volcanic risk assessment. The distribution, eruptive history, and geochronology of Plio-Quaternary basalt centers are described by individual center emphasizing the younger postcaldera basalt (<5 Ma). The Lathrop Wells volcanic center is described in detail because it is the youngest basalt center in the YMR. The age of the Lathrop Wells center is now confidently determined to be about 75 thousand years old. Chapter 3 describes the tectonic setting of the YMR and presents and assesses the significance of multiple alternative tectonic models. The distribution of Pliocene and Quaternary basaltic volcanic centers is evaluated with respect to tectonic models for detachment, caldera, regional and local rifting, and the Walker Lane structural zone. Geophysical data are described for the YMR and are used as an aid to understand the distribution of past basaltic volcanic centers and possible future magmatic processes. Chapter 4 discusses the petrologic and geochemical features of basaltic volcanism in the YMR, the southern Great Basin and the

  19. Dating a 109.9 m ice core from Dome A (East Antarctica) with volcanic records and a firn densification model

    LI ChuanJin; XIAO CunDe; HOU ShuGui; REN JiaWen; DING MingHu; GUO Rui


    A 109.9 m ice core was extracted at a location about 300 m away from the Dome A summit (80°00′S,77°21″E) by the Chinese team of the International Trans-Antarctic Science Expedition (ITASE) during the 21st Chinese National Antarctica Research Expedition (CHINARE) in January 2005.Two independent methods were used for dating the ice core,volcanic event markers shown by prominent non-sea-salt sulfate (nss-SO42-) and the Herron and Langway (H-L) fim densification model.Six prominent volcanic events (Agung 1963 AD,Tambora 1815 AD,Kuwae 1453 AD,Unknown 1259 AD,Taupo 186 AD and Pinatubo 1050 BC) were identified by comparison with other Antarctic ice cores.Based on the mean accumulation rates between adjacent events,we estimate the age at the firn pore close-off depth (102 m) was 3516±100 a BP.This is the oldest close-off age ever reported from the Antarctic and the Greenland ice sheets.Calculations using the H-L model sho,w that the age at the same depth is 3581±100 a BP.The two dating techniques differ by 65 years,or-1.8% of the record.We calculated the bottom age of the ice core as 4009±150 a BP using the volcanic d,ating method and 4115±150 a BP using the H-L model method.

  20. Inverted Relief in volcanic landscapes, an old idea with new observations in the Chaîne des Puys

    van Wyk de Vries, Benjamin; Karátson, Dávid


    The concept of volcanic inverted relief is almost as old as geology. It was identified by Desmarest (1870) in Central France, and by Whitney (1879) in California, and quickly began to be used as a tool in the uniformitarianism / catastrophism argument. In the 20th century inverted relief was identified and described in many volcanic fields by Cotton, later explored in Australia by Ollier, and most of the known examples presented in their textbooks are from Australia.Study continued in Central France, in the 19th and 20th centuries, notably on the Montagne de la Serre at the southern end of the Chaîne des Puys. This latter site has the advantage of having multiple ages of inverted relief stacked closely together over a rift margin fault. This creates especially clear and intricate inverted relief types. However, apart from these studies inverted relief has received little attention, yet is acknowledged to be present in most volcanic environments to some degree. The advent of planetary geology has partly brought inverted relief back to the fore, as it is clearly present on Mars. We review the characteristics of inverted relief and discuss their use as a tracer of long-term landscape evolution. At a broad scale it can be used for determining differential erosion rates. In turn, these can be used for assessing feedback processes between erosion, exhumation and mantle melting in rifts. Inverted relief also protects surfaces that can then record tectonic movement. This is used to clarify the structure of the Limagne Rift margin. At a more local scale, the inverted relief is often characterised by landsliding and deep seated gravitational deformation that is an important hazard in volcanic terrains. Several inverted relief related landslide disasters are recorded in the French Massif Central, and a landslide map is presented for the Chaîne des Puys - Limagne fault area. Finally a global review of inverted relief geosites is presented.

  1. Late Miocene extension in coastal Sonora, México: Implications for the evolution of dextral shear in the proto-Gulf of California oblique rift

    Darin, M. H.; Bennett, S. E. K.; Dorsey, R. J.; Oskin, M. E.; Iriondo, A.


    The timing, kinematics, and processes responsible for the rapid transition from subduction to oblique rifting and the localization of the Pacific-North America plate boundary in the Gulf of California are not well understood. Well exposed volcanic rocks deposited between 15 and 10 Ma in the Sierra Bacha (coastal Sonora, México) preserve a record of late Miocene deformation on the eastern rifted margin of the Gulf of California and offer new insights into the timing and kinematic evolution of oblique rifting. Detailed geologic mapping, fault kinematic analysis, U-Pb and 40Ar/39Ar geochronology, and paleomagnetic data reveal that the > 2 km-thick composite volcanic section is cut by a series of southwest-dipping, domino-style normal faults and uniformly tilted down-to-the-northeast. Palinspastic cross-section restoration suggests that the region experienced ca. 55-60% northeast-southwest-directed extension between 11.7 and 10-9 Ma. Fault kinematic data reflect relatively minor dextral transtension either following or during the later stages of extension. Paleomagnetic results indicating modest clockwise vertical-axis block rotation suggest that dextral shear was concentrated in the southwest of the study area near the modern coastline. These results support an emerging model in which dextral strain was not ubiquitous across Sonora and did not initiate immediately following the 12.5 Ma transition from subduction to oblique rifting. Instead, strain east of the Baja California microplate at this latitude evolved from extension-dominated transtension prior to 8 Ma to dextral shear-dominated transtension by 7-6 Ma. The onset of dextral shear in coastal Sonora likely resulted from an increase in rift obliquity due to a change in relative plate motion direction at 8 Ma. The increase in rift obliquity and resultant onset of significant strike-slip faulting played a crucial role in facilitating subsequent plate boundary localization and marine incursion in the northern Gulf

  2. Io. [theories concerning volcanic activity

    Johnson, T. V.; Soderblom, L. A.


    A report on the continuing investigation of Io is presented. Gravitational resonance is discussed as the cause of Io's volcanism, and the volcanic activity is explained in terms of sulfur chemistry. Theories concerning the reasons for the two main types of volcanic eruptions on Io are advanced and correlated with geographical features of the satellite. The sulfur and silicate models of the calderas are presented, citing the strengths and weaknesses of each. Problems of the gravitational resonance theory of Io's heat source are then described. Finally, observations of Io planned for the Galileo mission are summarized.

  3. Temporal and spatial constraints on the evolution of a Rio Grande rift sub-basin, Guadalupe Mountain area, northern New Mexico

    Thompson, R. A.; Turner, K. J.; Cosca, M. A.; Drenth, B.; Hudson, M. R.; Lee, J.


    The Taos Plateau volcanic field (TPVF) in the southern San Luis Valley of northern New Mexico is the most voluminous of the predominantly basaltic Neogene (6-1 Ma) volcanic fields of the Rio Grande rift. Volcanic deposits of the TPVF are intercalated with alluvial deposits of the Santa Fe Group and compose the N-S-trending San Luis Basin, the largest basin of the northern rift (13,500 km2 in area). Pliocene volcanic rocks of the Guadalupe Mountain area of northern New Mexico are underlain by the southern end of one of the larger sub-basins of the San Luis Valley, the Sunshine sub-basin (~ 450 km2 in area) juxtaposed against the down-to-west frontal fault of the Precambrian-cored Sangre de Cristo Range. The sub-basin plunges northward and extends to near the Colorado-New Mexico border. The western margin (~15 km west of the Sangre de Cristo fault) is constrained by outcrops of Oligocene to Miocene volcanic rocks of the Latir volcanic field, interpreted here as a broad pre-Pliocene intra-rift platform underlying much of the northern TPVF. The southern sub-basin border is derived, in part, from modeling of gravity and aeromagnetic data and is interpreted as a subsurface extension of this intra-rift platform that extends southeastward to nearly the Sangre de Cristo range front. Broadly coincident with this subsurface basement high is the northwest-trending, curvilinear terminus of the down-to-northeast Red River fault zone. South of the gravity high, basin-fill alluvium and ~3.84 Ma Servilleta basalt lava flows thicken along a poorly exposed, down-to-south, basin-bounding fault of the northern Taos graben, the largest of the San Luis Valley sub-basins. The uppermost, western sub-basin fill is exposed along steep canyon walls near the confluence of the Rio Grande and the Red River. Unconformity-bound, lava flow packages are intercalated with paleo Red River fan alluvium and define six eruptive sequences in the Guadalupe Mountain area: (1) Guadalupe Mtn. lavas (dacite ~5

  4. Lithospheric thinning beneath rifted regions of Southern California.

    Lekic, Vedran; French, Scott W; Fischer, Karen M


    The stretching and break-up of tectonic plates by rifting control the evolution of continents and oceans, but the processes by which lithosphere deforms and accommodates strain during rifting remain enigmatic. Using scattering of teleseismic shear waves beneath rifted zones and adjacent areas in Southern California, we resolve the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary and lithospheric thickness variations to directly constrain this deformation. Substantial and laterally abrupt lithospheric thinning beneath rifted regions suggests efficient strain localization. In the Salton Trough, either the mantle lithosphere has experienced more thinning than the crust, or large volumes of new lithosphere have been created. Lack of a systematic offset between surface and deep lithospheric deformation rules out simple shear along throughgoing unidirectional shallow-dipping shear zones, but is consistent with symmetric extension of the lithosphere.

  5. Seismicity near Lake Bogoria in the Kenya Rift valley

    Cooke, Philippa; Maguire, Peter; Evans, Russ; Laffoley, Nicholas

    An analysis of a local earthquake data set from within the Kenya Rift Valley has provided constraints on the crustal structure and rheology of the Rift as a whole. A 15 station seismic network operated for three months near Lake Bogoria in the central trough of the Kenya Rift (Fig.1). The project was part of the Kenya Rift International Seismic Project of 1985 (KRISP 85). The principal aim of the network was to record local seismicity. The network covered a 20 × 20 km2 area including the southern part of Lake Bogoria and had a station spacing of approximately 5 km. This extended abstract of a forthcoming paper [P.A.V. Cooke et al.,unpublished ms.] describes activity which occurred within an area of about 70 km diameter centred on the network.



    salts from lake brines as demonstrated herein have a direct industrial value addition to Tanzanian ... Table 1: Trend of brine ionic concentrations in Tanzanian rift valley lakes (Kameka 2006). ..... chemical investigative work, it is needed to.

  7. An updated global earthquake catalogue for stable continental regions: Reassessing the correlation with ancient rifts

    Schulte, S.M.; Mooney, W.D.


    We present an updated global earthquake catalogue for stable continental regions (SCRs; i.e. intraplate earthquakes) that is available on the Internet. Our database contains information on location, magnitude, seismic moment and focal mechanisms for over 1300 M (moment magnitude) ??? 4.5 historic and instrumentally recorded crustal events. Using this updated earthquake database in combination with a recently published global catalogue of rifts, we assess the correlation of intraplate seismicity with ancient rifts on a global scale. Each tectonic event is put into one of five categories based on location: (i) interior rifts/taphrogens, (ii) rifted continental margins, (iii) non-rifted crust, (iv) possible interior rifts and (v) possible rifted margins. We find that approximately 27 per cent of all events are classified as interior rifts (i), 25 per cent are rifted continental margins (ii), 36 per cent are within non-rifted crust (iii) and 12 per cent (iv and v) remain uncertain. Thus, over half (52 per cent) of all events are associated with rifted crust, although within the continental interiors (i.e. away from continental margins), non-rifted crust has experienced more earthquakes than interior rifts. No major change in distribution is found if only large (M ??? 6.0) earthquakes are considered. The largest events (M ??? 7.0) however, have occurred predominantly within rifts (50 per cent) and continental margins (43 per cent). Intraplate seismicity is not distributed evenly. Instead several zones of concentrated seismicity seem to exist. This is especially true for interior rifts/taphrogens, where a total of only 12 regions are responsible for 74 per cent of all events and as much as 98 per cent of all seismic moment released in that category. Of the four rifts/taphrogens that have experienced the largest earthquakes, seismicity within the Kutch rift, India, and the East China rift system, may be controlled by diffuse plate boundary deformation more than by the

  8. TDRS satellite over African Rift Valley, Kenya, Africa


    This post deploy view of a TDRS satellite shows a segment of the African Rift Valley near Lake Baringo, Kenya, Africa (3.0S, 36.0E). The African Rift Valley system is a geologic fault having its origins in southern Turkey, through the near east forming the bed of the Jordan River, Gulf of Aqaba, the Red Sea and down through east Africa. The line of lakes and valleys of east Africa are the result of the faulting activity.

  9. Geology of Newberry National Volcanic Monument, Oregon, USA

    Donnelly-Nolan, J. M.; Jensen, R. A.; Robinson, J. E.


    Volcanic geology is the dominant theme at Newberry National Volcanic Monument in central Oregon. Established almost 25 years ago, the NNVM (like the Mt. St. Helens National Volcanic Monument) is managed by the U.S. Forest Service. The monument encompasses some 90 square miles in Deschutes National Forest of the 1200-sq-mi Newberry Volcano, including the 4x5 mi scenic central caldera and the volcano's youngest lava flow, the 1300-yr-old Big Obsidian Flow. The seismically-monitored Newberry Volcano is considered by the USGS to be a very high threat volcano, with the potential to impact adjacent populations in Bend, Sunriver, and LaPine and damage infrastructure including highways, railroads, and power lines. Unspectacular from a distance, the broad shield shape of Newberry Volcano hides the abundance and youthfulness of volcanic activity. Included in NNVM are 7-ka basalt to andesite lavas of the Northwest Rift Zone (NWRZ) that erupted from spatter and cinder cones over a N-S distance of 20 miles and temporarily blocked the flow of the adjacent Deschutes River. These well-exposed lavas are post-Mazama in age, having erupted after a blanket of ash and pumice was deposited on the volcano when Mt. Mazama erupted at 7.7 ka to form Crater Lake. Images from lidar data obtained in 2011 clearly display the post-Mazama lavas, which not only are unmantled by the tephra, but also lack the thick forest that has grown in the tephra further obscuring many of the youthful volcanic features across this massive rear-arc Cascades volcano. NNVM features interpretive trails at the Big Obsidian Flow in the caldera and at Lava Cast Forest and Lava Butte flow along the NWRZ. Also within the monument are two of the premier drivable viewpoints in Oregon, on Lava Butte and at the 7984-ft top of Paulina Peak on the rim of the caldera. On a clear day, views from Paulina Peak encompass much of the High Cascades, extending from Mt. Shasta in California to Mt. Adams in Washington.

  10. Evolution of an Interbasin Mountain-Block Extensional Accommodation Zone Within the Central Colorado Rio Grande Rift, USA

    Minor, S. A.; Caine, J. S.; Fridrich, C.; Hudson, M. R.


    Our understanding of extensional strain transfer and accommodation in continental rifts has grown considerably, but few studied transfer zones exhibit high internal topographic and structural relief. In the Rio Grande rift of Colorado the WNW-trending northern tip of the Sangre de Cristo Range separates the opposite-tilted Upper Arkansas River (UAR) and San Luis half grabens. We have investigated the development and role of faults flanking this "Poncha" intrarift mountain block in transferring extension between rift basins, mountain block surface uplift, and landscape evolution. The topographically rugged Poncha block consists of Proterozoic metamorphic and plutonic rocks overlain on its west and southwest flanks by 34.5-33-Ma volcanic rocks and alluvial deposits of the Mio-Pliocene Dry Union Formation. Similar Dry Union sediments underlie a moderately elevated, strongly dissected older piedmont along the northern front of the mountain block. All of these units are tilted 10-35º to the W and SW. A WNW-trending, right-stepping fault system > 25 km in length separates the piedmont and UAR basin from the steep northern Poncha mountain front. Slip measurements along this fault system, cutting deposits as young as ~200 ka, indicate dextral-normal oblique movement. The NNW-striking, down-to-E southern Sawatch range-front fault system forms the western terminus of the Poncha block where it juxtaposes Dry Union deposits against Sawatch Proterozoic basement rocks. Gently tilted proximal diamicton and alluvial deposits on the downthrown blocks of both range-front faults likely mark Plio-Pleistocene(?) mountain block uplift. Arrays of NNW- to WNW-striking faults cutting volcanic and Dry Union units on the flanks of the Poncha block commonly have normal-oblique slip, with greater tendency for dextral strike-slip components on WNW-striking faults. Preliminary paleomagnetic data from the volcanic rocks detect no significant vertical-axis rotation that accompanied oblique

  11. An interdisciplinary approach for groundwater management in area contaminated by fluoride in East African Rift System

    Da Pelo, Stefania; Melis, M. Teresa; Dessì, Francesco; Pistis, Marco; Funedda, Antonio; Oggiano, Giacomo; Carletti, Alberto; Soler Gil, Albert; Barbieri, Manuela; Pittalis, Daniele; Ghiglieri, Giorgio


    Groundwater is the main source of fresh water supply for most of the rural communities in Africa (approximately 75% of Africans has confidence in groundwater as their major source of drinking water). Many African countries has affected by high fluoride concentration in groundwater (up to 90 mg/L), generating the contamination of waters, soils and food, in particular in the eastern part of the continent. It seems that fluoride concentration is linked to geology of the Rift Valley: geogenic occurrence of fluoride is often connected to supergenic enrichment due to the weathering of alkaline volcanic rocks, fumaric gases and presence of thermal waters. The H2020 project FLOWERED (de-FLuoridation technologies for imprOving quality of WatEr and agRo-animal products along the East African Rift Valley in the context of aDaptation to climate change) wish to address environmental and health (human and animal) issues associated to the fluoride contamination in the African Rift Valley, in particular in three case study area located in Ethiopia, Tanzania and Kenya. FLOWERED aims to develop an integrated, sustainable and participative water and agriculture management at a cross-boundary catchment scale through a strong interdisciplinary research approach. It implies knowledge of geology, hydrogeology, mineralogy, geochemistry, agronomy, crop and animal sciences, engineering, technological sciences, data management and software design, economics and communication. The proposed approach is based on a detailed knowledge of the hydrogeological setting, with the identification and mapping of the specific geological conditions of water contamination and its relation with the different land uses. The East African Rift System (EARS) groundwater circulation and storage, today already poorly understood, is characterized by a complex arrangement of aquifers. It depends on the type of porosity and permeability created during and after the rock formation, and is strongly conditioned by the

  12. Volcanic eruptions observed with infrasound

    Johnson, Jeffrey B.; Aster, Richard C.; Kyle, Philip R.


    Infrasonic airwaves produced by active volcanoes provide valuable insight into the eruption dynamics. Because the infrasonic pressure field may be directly associated with the flux rate of gas released at a volcanic vent, infrasound also enhances the efficacy of volcanic hazard monitoring and continuous studies of conduit processes. Here we present new results from Erebus, Fuego, and Villarrica volcanoes highlighting uses of infrasound for constraining quantitative eruption parameters, such as eruption duration, source mechanism, and explosive gas flux.

  13. Los volcanes y los hombres

    García, Carmen


    Desde las entrañas de la tierra, los volcanes han creado la atmósfera, el agua de los océanos, y esculpido los relieves del planeta: son, pues, los zahoríes de la vida. Existen volcanes que los hombres explotan o cultivan, y otros sobre los cuales se han construido observatorios en los que se llevan a cabo avanzadas investigaciones científicas.

  14. Volcanic hazards and aviation safety

    Casadevall, Thomas J.; Thompson, Theodore B.; Ewert, John W.; ,


    An aeronautical chart was developed to determine the relative proximity of volcanoes or ash clouds to the airports and flight corridors that may be affected by volcanic debris. The map aims to inform and increase awareness about the close spatial relationship between volcanoes and aviation operations. It shows the locations of the active volcanoes together with selected aeronautical navigation aids and great-circle routes. The map mitigates the threat that volcanic hazards pose to aircraft and improves aviation safety.

  15. Chronology and volcanology of the 1949 multi-vent rift-zone eruption on La Palma (Canary Islands)

    Klügel, A.; Schmincke, H.-U.; White, J. D. L.; Hoernle, K. A.


    The compositionally zoned San Juan eruption on La Palma emanated from three eruptive centers located along a north-south-trending rift zone in the south of the island. Seismic precursors began weakly in 1936 and became strong in March 1949, with their foci progressing from the north of the rift zone towards its south. This suggests that magma ascended beneath the old Taburiente shield volcano and moved southward along the rift. The eruption began on June 24, 1949, with phreatomagmatic activity at Duraznero crater on the ridgetop (ca. 1880 m above sea level), where five vents erupted tephritic lava along a 400-m-long fissure. On June 8, the Duraznero vents shut down abruptly, and the activity shifted to an off-rift fissure at Llano del Banco, located at ca. 550 m lower elevation and 3 km to the northwest. This eruptive center issued initially tephritic aa and later basanitic pahoehoe lava at high rates, producing a lava flow that entered the sea. Two days after basanite began to erupt at Llano del Banco, Hoyo Negro crater (ca. 1880 m asl), located 700 m north of Duraznero along the rift, opened on July 12 and produced ash and bombs of basanitic to phonotephritic composition in violent phreatomagmatic explosions ( White and Schmincke, 1999). Llano del Banco and Hoyo Negro were simultaneously active for 11 days and showed a co-variance of their eruption rates indicating a shallow hydraulic connection. On July 30, after 3 days of quiescence at all vents, Duraznero and Hoyo Negro became active again during a final eruptive phase. Duraznero issued basanitic lava at high rates for 12 h and produced a lava flow that descended towards the east coast. The lava contains ca. 1 vol.% crustal and mantle xenoliths consisting of 40% tholeiitic gabbros from the oceanic crust, 35% alkaline gabbros, and 20% ultramafic cumulates. The occurrence of xenoliths almost exclusively in the final lava is consistent with their origin by wall-rock collapse at depth near the end of the eruption

  16. Use of precipitation and groundwater isotopes to interpret regional hydrology on a tropical volcanic island: Kilauea volcano area, Hawaii

    Scholl, M.A.; Ingebritsen, S.E.; Janik, C.J.; Kauahikaua, J.P.


    Isotope tracer methods were used to determine flow paths, recharge areas, and relative age for groundwater in the Kilauea volcano area of the Island of Hawaii. A network of up to 66 precipitation collectors was emplaced in the study area and sampled twice yearly for a 3-year period. Stable isotopes in rainfall show three distinct isotopic gradients with elevation, which are correlated with trade wind, rain shadow, and high- elevation climatological patterns. Temporal variations in precipitation isotopes are controlled more by the frequency of storms than by seasonal temperature fluctuations. Results from this study suggest that (1) sampling network design must take into account areal variations in rainfall patterns on islands and in continental coastal areas and (2) isotope/elevation gradients on other tropical islands may be predictable on the basis of similar climatology. Groundwater was sampled yearly in coastal springs, wells, and a few high-elevation springs. Areal contrasts in groundwater stable isotopes and tritium indicate that the volcanic rift zones compartmentalize the regional groundwater system, isolating the groundwater south of Kilauea's summit and rift zones. Part of the Southwest Rift gone appears to act as a conduit for water from higher elevation, but there is no evidence for downrift flow in the springs and shallow wells sampled in the lower East Rift Zone.

  17. Rifts in the tectonic structure of East Antarctica

    Golynsky, Dmitry; Golynsky, Alexander


    It was established that riftogenic and/or large linear tectonic structures in East Antarctica are distributed with a steady regularity with average distance between them about 650 km. All these structures (13) represent objects of undoubted scientific and practical interest and might be considered as immediate objects for conducting integrated geological and geophysical investigations. Analysis and generalization of the RADARSAT satellite system imagery and radio-echosounding survey data collected in the eastern part of Princess Elizabeth Land allow us to distinguish spatial boundaries of previously unknown continental rift system that was proposed to name Gaussberg (Golynsky & Golynsky, 2007). The rift is about 500 km long, and taking into consideration its western continuation in the form of short (fragmented) faults, may exceed 700 km. The elevation difference between depressions and horsts reaches 3 km. The rift structure consists of two sub-parallel depressions separated by segmented horst-like rises (escarpments). Deep depressions within the rift reach more than 800 m bsl near the West Ice Shelf and within the central graben occupied by the Phillipi Glacier. The width of the Gaussberg Rift system varies from 60 km in the south-western area to 150 km near the West Ice Shelf. The Gaussberg rift is considered as a part of the Lambert rift system, which has a complicated structure clearly recognized over both the continent and also its margin. The Gaussberg rift probably exploited a weak zone between the Proterozoic mobile belt and the Archaean Vestfold-Rauer cratonic block. Supposedly it initiated at the turn of Jurassic and Permian epoch or a little bit earlier as in case of the Lambert rift where the Permian graben formation with coal-bearing deposits predetermined the subsequent development of submeridional rift zone. The Gaussberg and also the Scott rift developed in the Queen Marie Land, may be considered as continuations of the Mahanadi Valley rift and

  18. Interactions between basalts and oil source rocks in rift basins: CO2 generation


    Basalts interbedded with oil source rocks are discovered frequently in rift basins of eastern China, where CO2 is found in reservoirs around or within basalts, for example in the Binnan reservoir of the Dongying Depression. In the reservoirs, CO2 with heavy carbon isotopic composition (δ13C>-10‰ PDB) is in most cases accounts for 40% of the total gas reserve, and is believed to have resulted from degassing of basaltic magma from the mantle. In their investigations of the Binnan reservoir, the authors suggested that the CO2 would result from interactions between the source rocks and basalts. As the source rocks around basalts are rich in carbonate minerals, volcanic minerals, transition metals and organic matter, during their burial history some of the transition metals were catalyzed on the thermal degradation of organic matter into hydrocarbons and on the decomposition of carbonate minerals into CO2, which was reproduced in thermal simulations of the source rocks with the transition metals (Ni and Co). This kind of CO2 accounts for 55%-85% of the total gas reserve generated in the process of thermal simulation, and its δ13C values range from -11‰- -7.2‰ PDB, which are very similar to those of CO2 found in the Binnan reservoir. The co-generation of CO2 and hydrocarbon gases makes it possible their accumulation together in one trap. In other words, if the CO2 resulted directly from degassing of basaltic magma or was derived from the mantle, it could not be accumulated with hydrocarbon gases because it came into the basin much earlier than hydrocarbon generation and much earlier than trap formation. Therefore, the source rocks around basalts generated hydrocarbons and CO2 simultaneously through catalysis of Co and Ni transition metals, which is useful for the explanation of co-accumulation of hydrocarbon gases and CO2 in rift basins in eastern China.

  19. Initial stages of oceanic spreading in the Bransfield Rift from magnetic and gravity data analysis

    Catalán, Manuel; Galindo-Zaldivar, Jesús; Davila, José Martín; Martos, Yasmina M.; Maldonado, Andrés; Gambôa, Luiz; Schreider, Anatoly A.


    Bransfield Basin, a 500-km-long and 100-km-wide extensional structure with a well-marked NE-SW orientation, is considered a back-arc basin developed since the Pliocene and associated with subduction of the former Phoenix Plate below the South Shetland Islands Block. Extension also occurs in this area as a consequence of the end of the sinistral fault zone that deforms the South Scotia Ridge. On the basis of potential field data from marine cruises, we provide new magnetic and Bouguer gravity maps of the area at sea level. We have characterized the central magnetic anomaly by using Euler deconvolution method, spectral analysis and forward modeling obtaining a thin (1.5 km) and shallow (4 km b.s.l.) layer, and a low total magnetization (2.6 A/m). The forward modeling was constrained on basis of previous seismic refraction studies. Our models show two situations. The first presents a uniform density values along the entire crust in the basin. This would be compatible with rifting in a more advanced stage, or even an oceanic crust in its earliest stages, while the second would support the existence of a stretched, thinned and altered crust through the injection of volcanic material. In the light of these models, analysis of the new potential field maps presented in this work and information from previous studies we consider that the Central Bransfield Basin is in a rifting in its latest stages or presents an incipient oceanic crust formed by recent oceanic spreading.

  20. Monogenetic volcanic fields and their geoheritage values of western Saudi Arabia and their implication to holistic geoeducation projects locally and globally (Invited)

    Nemeth, K.; Moufti, R.


    Monogeneitc volcanic fields are the most common manifestation of volcanism on Earth and other planets. They composed of small volume and short lived volcanoes each of them with a relatively simple eruption history. In spite of recent researches demonstrated complex, repeated and geochemically distinct eruption histories commonly associated with te formation of small-volume volcanoes, they are still considerred as volcanoes that are in human-scale and therefore ideal to use them as educational tools or part of volcanic geoheritage projects including geopark developments. In the western margin of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia there are at least 9 intracontinental volcanic fields subparalell with the Red Sea Rift ranging from alkaline basaltic to basalt-trachyte bimodal dispersed volcanic systems. Among these volcanic fields the geoheritage value of three fields were recently evaluated and proposed that they are suitable for further development to establish the first volcanic geoparks in the Arabian Peninsula in the area of 1) Al Madinah (AMVF) 2) Kishb (KVF) and 3) Hutaymah Volcanic Fields (HVF). The AMVF offers a natural concept based on specific volcanic precinct ordering of its volcanic geoheritages from the most accessable and most common volcanism that is historically significant (eg. scoria and lava spatter cones with extensive lava fields) toward a more adventure geotourism style approach in remote, less common but more destructive type of volcanism (eg. trachytic explosion craters). In the contrary, the KVF is a perfect site where phreatomagmatic volcanism and their consequences were identified as a major driving force for further geopark developments. The HVF with its rich archaeological and cultural sites and superbly exposed variously eroded tuff rings and maars offer a good location to develop geoeducation programs to highlight short- and long-term climatic and hydrologic changes in an area a volcanic field evolved. The three Saudi projects also demonstrate

  1. The Central Lake Malawi (Nyasa) Rift: single or multiple rift segments?

    McCartney, T.; Scholz, C. A.; Shillington, D. J.; Accardo, N. J.; Chindandali, P. R. N.; Kamihanda, G.


    Accommodation zones connect rift segments, which are fundamental elements of continental rift architecture. The sedimentary record aids our assessment of the evolution of this linkage. The central basin of Lake Malawi is one of the most structurally complex regions of the Malawi Rift. Border fault margins have been interpreted on both shorelines; three structures within the basin have been interpreted as segments of a corresponding accommodation zone. We investigate these structures by integrating single- and multi-channel reflection seismic data, including new MCS acquired in 2015 for the SEGMeNT project. The stratigraphic record in the central basin, inferred from seismic reflection profiles, provides compelling evidence that most fault-related subsidence is accommodated by the western border fault. Strata on both sides of all three structures dip to the west. The pre-rift basement in the sub-basin west of the central structure is considerably deeper (~ 4 s TWTT sub-bottom) than that in the broader eastern sub-basin (~ 2.5 s TWTT sub-bottom). A syncline in the eastern sub-basin shows little variation in seismic facies, particularly over the last 1.3 m.y. In contrast, the western sub-basin exhibits seismic facies indicative of fluvial input from two major rivers, siliciclastic input from the border fault footwall rising > 1000 m above lake level, and mud diapirs in the deepest part of the sub-basin. Horizons pierced by these diapirs onlap the central structure, suggesting diapir rise postdates relative uplift of the structure. Correlations with the age model from a 2005 scientific drilling project will better constrain this timing. The structural high helps focus siliciclastic sediments into the sub-basin, resulting in the overpressure conditions required for mud diapirism. We hypothesize that the diapirs are the result of sediment loading in the deep main depocenter of the central basin rather than fault mechanisms. The basement highs in the central basin control

  2. Cretaceous alkaline volcanism in south Marzanabad, northern central Alborz, Iran: Geochemistry and petrogenesis

    Roghieh Doroozi


    Full Text Available The alkali-basalt and basaltic trachy-andesites volcanic rocks of south Marzanabad were erupted during Cretaceous in central Alborz, which is regarded as the northern part of the Alpine-Himalayan orogenic belt. Based on petrography and geochemistry, en route fractional crystallization of ascending magma was an important process in the evolution of the volcanic rocks. Geochemical characteristics imply that the south Marzanabad alkaline basaltic magma was originated from the asthenospheric mantle source, whereas the high ratios of (La/YbN and (Dy/YbN are related to the low degree of partial melting from the garnet bearing mantle source. Enrichment pattern of Nb and depletion of Rb, K and Y, are similar to the OIB pattern and intraplate alkaline magmatic rocks. The K/Nb and Zr/Nb ratios of volcanic rocks range from 62 to 588 and from 4.27 to 9 respectively, that are some higher in more evolved samples which may reflect minor crustal contamination. The isotopic ratios of Sr and Nd respectively vary from 0.70370 to 0.704387 and from 0.51266 to 0.51281 that suggest the depleted mantle as a magma source. The development of south Marzanabad volcanic rocks could be related to the presence of extensional phase, upwelling and decompressional melting of asthenospheric mantle in the rift basin which made the alkaline magmatism in Cretaceous, in northern central Alborz of Iran.

  3. Peridotite xenoliths from Ethiopia: inferences on mantle processes from Plume to Rift settings

    Beccaluva, Luigi; Bianchini, Gianluca; Ellam, Robert Mark; Natali, Claudio; Santato, Alessandro; Siena, Franca; Stuart, Finlay


    agreement with the respective bulk rock chemistry. Sr-Nd-Pb on separeted clinopyroxenes are 87Sr/86Sr 0.70220-0.70310, 143Nd/144Nd 0.51301-0.51379, 206Pb/204Pb 18.38-19.34 for lherzolites, and 87Sr/86Sr 0.70268-0.70326, 143Nd/144Nd 0.51275-0.51305, 206Pb/204Pb 18.46-18.52 for harzburgites, thus ranging in composition between the DM and HIMU mantle end-members. These data suggest variably carbonated alkali-silicate melt(s) as the main metasomatic agent(s) of southern MER xenoliths in agreement with what observed in other mantle xenolith occurrences set along the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden rifted continental margins which radiate from the Afar triple point. The decidedly different types of metasomatic agents recorded in Ethiopian mantle xenoliths, from the CFB area to the Rift system, clearly reflect distinct tectonomagmatic settings, i.e. the plume-related Oligocene subalkaline magmatism and the Neogene rift-related alkaline volcanism.

  4. Propagation of rifting along the Arabia-Somalia Plate Boundary: Into Afar

    Manighetti, I.; Tapponnier, P.; Gillot, P. Y.; Jacques, E.; Courtillot, V.; Armijo, R.; Ruegg, J. C.; King, G.


    It is generally accepted that the Aden ridge has propagated westward from ˜58°E to the western tip of the Gulf of Aden/Tadjoura, at the edge of Afar. Here, we use new tectonic and geochronological data to examine the geometry and kinematics of deformation related to the penetration of that ridge on dry land in the Republic of Djibouti. We show that it veers northward, forming a narrow zone of dense faulting along the northeastern edge of the Afar depression. The zone includes two volcanic rifts (Asal-Ghoubbet and Manda Inakir), connected to one another and to the submarine part of the ridge by transfer zones. Both rifts are composite, divided into two or three disconnected, parallel, NW-SE striking subrifts, all of which appear to have propagated northwestward. In Asal-Ghoubbet as in Manda Inakir, the subrifts appear to have formed in succession, through north directed jumps from subrifts more farther south. At present, the northernmost subrifts (Manda and Dirko Koma) of the Manda Inakir rift, form the current tip of the northward propagating Arabia-Somalia plate boundary in Afar. We account for most observations by a mechanical model similar to that previously inferred for the Gulf of Aden, in which propagation is governed by the intensity and direction of the minimum horizontal principal stress, σ3. We interpret the northward propagation on land, almost orthogonal to that in the gulf, to be related to necking of the Central Afar lithosphere where it is thinnest. Such necking may be a consequence of differential magmatic thickening, greater in the center of the Afar depression where the Ethiopian hot spot enhanced profuse basaltic effusion and underplating than along the edges of the depression. The model explains why the Aden ridge foregoes its WSW propagation direction, constant from ˜58°E to Asal-Ghoubbet. At a smaller scale, individual rifts and subrifts keep opening perpendicular to the Arabia-Somalia (or Danakil-Somalia) motion vector and propagate

  5. Tectonics and soil edaphics as controls on animal migrations and early human inhabitance in the Kenya Rift

    Kübler, Simon; Rucina, Stephen; Reynolds, Sally; Fürgut, Felix; Bailey, Geoffrey; King, Geoffrey


    Animal movements in the tectonically active East African Rift Valley today are influenced by a combination of topography and soil nutrient distribution (soil edaphics). These patterns would have been the same in the past when hominins inhabited the area. Our study in the Kenya Rift shows that soil edaphics and active rift structures play a key role in present day animal movements as well as the for the location of early hominin sites. We carried out field analysis at Olorgesailie and Kariandusi, two key hominin sites in the southern and central Kenya Rift, respectiveley. Based on studying the relationship between the geology, tectonics and soil development we identified 'good' and 'bad' regions both in terms of edaphics and accessibility for grazing animals. We further sampled a large number of soils that developed on the volcanic bedrock and sediments of the region and interviewed the local Maasai shepherds to learn about present-day good and bad grazing sites. Ultimately, we created palaeoenvironmental and spatio-temporal reconstructions for interpreting human land use and exploitation of large mammals in the Kenya Rift for the relevant time frame of approximately 1 Ma BP. At Olorgesailie the hominin site is located in lacustrine sediments at the southern edge of a playa that extends north and northwest of Mt. Olorgesailie. The lakebeds are now tilted and eroded by motion on two north-south striking faults. The lake was trapped by volcanic flows and alluvial fans from Mt. Olorgesailie and was released by the fault motion leading to deep river incision and exposure of the site. To the west and the north steep fault scarps bound the playa forming a natural barrier for animals. Field observations and information from local shepherds suggest that the abundant trachytes at the valley floor produce poor soils whereas the soils developed on lacustrine and alluvial sediments close to the hominin site provide much more attractive grazing sites for present-day animals

  6. The Fenwei rift and its recent periodic activity

    Wang, Jing-Ming


    The Fenwei rift on the southern sector of the Jin—Shaan rift system of China is marked by a crescent-shaped valley 600 km in length and 30-90 km in width depressed up to 10 km and filled with about 7000 m of Cenozoic deposits, bounded on both northern and southern sides by majestic mountain ranges. The geometry of the rift valley is characterized by six branch depressions and five intervening swells extending east-northeastward in a dextral en-echelon pattern and bounded on both sides by abrupt topographic slopes reflecting the underlying faults. These are typically a system of growth faults having downthrows ranging from 800 m to 10 km and dipping toward the centre of the valley forming an asymmetric graben structure. The geometry, kinematics and evolution of these faults have had controlling influences on the neotectonic movement of the rift and its recent periodic activity as the present overall form of the rift valley. Estimates of the amount of extension across the rift for various recent geological periods were obtained from calculations made on the fault separation of corresponding stratigraphie horizons. The total amount of extension in response to tensile stresses, acting in a direction varying from 25° NW on the west to 70° NW on the northeast is estimated to be 9065 m, since the beginning of the rift formation in the Eocene whereas the rate of extension in the Recent is 4.5 mm/yr and in modern times it is 8-24 mm/yr. The amount of left-lateral displacement across the rift during various stages of its development was also calculated from the observed effects of strike-slip movement on the drainage system. The left-lateral offset since the mid-Pleistocene is approximately 7170 m and the offset rate in modern times is 6 mm/yr. These estimates suggest that the Fenwei rift has been a place of intense neotectonic activity. Details of more recent activity of the rift were investigated in terms of the various rift-related phenomena such as seismic events

  7. Stochastic velocity inversion of seismic reflection/refraction traveltime data for rift structure of the southwest Barents Sea

    Clark, Stephen A.; Faleide, Jan Inge; Hauser, Juerg


    We present results from an active-source, onshore–offshore seismic reflection/refraction transect acquired as part of the PETROBAR project (Petroleum-related studies of the Barents Sea region). The 700 km-long profile is oriented NW–SE, coincident with previously published multichannel seismic...... reflection profiles. We utilize layer-based raytracing in a Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) inversion to determine a probabilistic velocity model constraining the sedimentary rocks, crystalline crust, and uppermost mantle in a complex tectonic regime. The profile images a wide range of crustal types and ages...... with the amount of overlap derived from published plate reconstructions. Local β factors approach 3, where Bjørnøya Basin reaches a depth of more than 13 km. Volcanics, carbonates, salt, diagenesis and metamorphism make deep sedimentary basin fill difficult to distinguish from original, pre-rift crystalline crust...

  8. Quaternary basaltic volcanism in the Payenia volcanic province, Argentina

    Søager, Nina

    primitive basalts and trachybasalts but also more evolved samples from the retroarc region and the larger volcanoes Payún Matrú and Payún Liso are presented. The samples cover a broad range of compositions from intraplate lavas similar to ocean island basalts to arc andesites. A common feature found...... Pleistocene times. These basalts mark the end of a period of shallow subduction of the Nazca slab beneath the Payenia province and volcanism in the Nevado volcanic field apparently followed the downwarping slab in a north-northwest direction ending in the Northern Segment. The northern Payenia basalts...... the literature. The Nevado basalts have been modelled by 4-10 % melting of a primitive mantle added 1-5 % upper continental crust. In the southern Payenia province, intraplate basalts dominate. The samples from the Payún Matrú and Río Colorado volcanic fields are apparently unaffected by the subducting slab...

  9. Fault architecture in the Main Ethiopian Rift and comparison with experimental models: Implications for rift evolution and Nubia-Somalia kinematics

    Agostini, Andrea; Bonini, Marco; Corti, Giacomo; Sani, Federico; Mazzarini, Francesco


    The Main Ethiopian Rift (MER) offers a complete record of the time-space evolution of a continental rift. We have characterized the brittle deformation in different rift sectors through the statistical analysis of a new database of faults obtained from the integration between satellite images and digital elevation models, and implemented with field controls. This analysis has been compared with the results of lithospheric-scale analogue models reproducing the kinematical conditions of orthogonal and oblique rifting. Integration of these approaches suggests substantial differences in fault architecture in the different rift sectors that in turn reflect an along-axis variation of the rift development and southward decrease in rift evolution. The northernmost MER sector is in a mature stage of incipient continental rupture, with deformation localised within the rift floor along discrete tectono-magmatic segments and almost inactive boundary faults. The central MER sector records a transitional stage in which migration of deformation from boundary faults to faults internal to the rift valley is in an incipient phase. The southernmost MER sector is instead in an early continental stage, with the largest part of deformation being accommodated by boundary faults and almost absent internal faults. The MER thus records along its axis the typical evolution of continental rifting, from fault-dominated rift morphology in the early stages of extension toward magma-dominated extension during break-up. The extrapolation of modelling results suggests that a variable rift obliquity contributes to the observed along-axis variations in rift architecture and evolutionary stage, being oblique rifting conditions controlling the MER evolution since its birth in the Late Miocene in relation to a constant post ca. 11 Ma ~ N100°E Nubia-Somalia motion.

  10. Atmospheric chemistry in volcanic plumes.

    von Glasow, Roland


    Recent field observations have shown that the atmospheric plumes of quiescently degassing volcanoes are chemically very active, pointing to the role of chemical cycles involving halogen species and heterogeneous reactions on aerosol particles that have previously been unexplored for this type of volcanic plumes. Key features of these measurements can be reproduced by numerical models such as the one employed in this study. The model shows sustained high levels of reactive bromine in the plume, leading to extensive ozone destruction, that, depending on plume dispersal, can be maintained for several days. The very high concentrations of sulfur dioxide in the volcanic plume reduces the lifetime of the OH radical drastically, so that it is virtually absent in the volcanic plume. This would imply an increased lifetime of methane in volcanic plumes, unless reactive chlorine chemistry in the plume is strong enough to offset the lack of OH chemistry. A further effect of bromine chemistry in addition to ozone destruction shown by the model studies presented here, is the oxidation of mercury. This relates to mercury that has been coemitted with bromine from the volcano but also to background atmospheric mercury. The rapid oxidation of mercury implies a drastically reduced atmospheric lifetime of mercury so that the contribution of volcanic mercury to the atmospheric background might be less than previously thought. However, the implications, especially health and environmental effects due to deposition, might be substantial and warrant further studies, especially field measurements to test this hypothesis.

  11. Climatic impact of volcanic eruptions

    Rampino, Michael R.


    Studies have attempted to 'isolate' the volcanic signal in noisy temperature data. This assumes that it is possible to isolate a distinct volcanic signal in a record that may have a combination of forcings (ENSO, solar variability, random fluctuations, volcanism) that all interact. The key to discovering the greatest effects of volcanoes on short-term climate may be to concentrate on temperatures in regions where the effects of aerosol clouds may be amplified by perturbed atmospheric circulation patterns. This is especially true in subpolar and midlatitude areas affected by changes in the position of the polar front. Such climatic perturbation can be detected in proxy evidence such as decrease in tree-ring widths and frost rings, changes in the treeline, weather anomalies, severity of sea-ice in polar and subpolar regions, and poor grain yields and crop failures. In low latitudes, sudden temperature drops were correlated with the passage overhead of the volcanic dust cloud (Stothers, 1984). For some eruptions, such as Tambora, 1815, these kinds of proxy and anectdotal information were summarized in great detail in a number of papers and books (e.g., Post, 1978; Stothers, 1984; Stommel and Stommel, 1986; C. R. Harrington, in press). These studies lead to the general conclusion that regional effects on climate, sometimes quite severe, may be the major impact of large historical volcanic aerosol clouds.

  12. Late Ordovician (post-Sardic) rifting branches in the North Gondwanan Montagne Noire and Mouthoumet massifs of southern France

    Javier Álvaro, J.; Colmenar, Jorge; Monceret, Eric; Pouclet, André; Vizcaïno, Daniel


    Upper Ordovician-Lower Devonian rocks of the Cabrières klippes (southern Montagne Noire) and the Mouthoumet massif in southern France rest paraconformably or with angular discordance on Cambrian-Lower Ordovician strata. Neither Middle-Ordovician volcanism nor associated metamorphism is recorded, and the subsequent Middle-Ordovician stratigraphic gap is related to the Sardic phase. Upper Ordovician sedimentation started in the rifting branches of Cabrières and Mouthoumet with deposition of basaltic lava flows and lahar deposits (Roque de Bandies and Villerouge formations) of continental tholeiite signature (CT), indicative of continental fracturing. The infill of both rifting branches followed with the onset of (1) Katian (Ka1-Ka2) conglomerates and sandstones (Glauzy and Gascagne formations), which have yielded a new brachiopod assemblage representative of the Svobodaina havliceki Community; (2) Katian (Ka2-Ka4) limestones, marlstones, and shales with carbonate nodules, reflecting development of bryozoan-echinoderm meadows with elements of the Nicolella Community (Gabian and Montjoi formations); and (3) the Hirnantian Marmairane Formation in the Mouthoumet massif that has yielded a rich and diverse fossil association representative of the pandemic Hirnantia Fauna. The sealing of the subaerial palaeorelief generated during the Sardic phase is related to Silurian and Early Devonian transgressions leading to onlapping patterns and the record of high-angle discordances.

  13. Neogene Development of the Terror Rift, western Ross Sea, Antarctica

    Sauli, C.; Sorlien, C. C.; Busetti, M.; De Santis, L.; Wardell, N.; Henrys, S. A.; Geletti, R.; Wilson, T. J.; Luyendyk, B. P.


    Terror Rift is a >300 km-long, 50-70 km-wide, 14 km-deep sedimentary basin at the edge of the West Antarctic Rift System, adjacent to the Transantarctic Mountains. It is cut into the broader Victoria Land Basin (VLB). The VLB experienced 100 km of mid-Cenozoic extension associated with larger sea floor spreading farther north. The post-spreading (Neogene) development of Terror Rift is not well understood, in part because of past use of different stratigraphic age models. We use the new Rossmap seismic stratigraphy correlated to Cape Roberts and Andrill cores in the west and to DSDP cores in the distant East. This stratigraphy, and new fault interpretations, was developed using different resolutions of seismic reflection data included those available from the Seismic Data Library System. Depth conversion used a new 3D velocity model. A 29 Ma horizon is as deep as 8 km in the south, and a 19 Ma horizon is >5 km deep there and 4 km-deep 100 km farther north. There is a shallower northern part of Terror Rift misaligned with the southern basin across a 50 km right double bend. It is bounded by steep N-S faults down-dropping towards the basin axis. Between Cape Roberts and Ross Island, the Oligocene section is also progressively-tilted. This Oligocene section is not imaged within northern Terror Rift, but the simplest hypothesis is that some of the Terror Rift-bounding faults were active at least during Oligocene through Quaternary time. Many faults are normal separation, but some are locally vertical or even reverse-separation in the upper couple of km. However, much of the vertical relief of the strata is due to progressive tilting (horizontal axis rotation) and not by shallow faulting. Along the trend of the basin, the relief alternates between tilting and faulting, with a tilting margin facing a faulted margin across the Rift, forming asymmetric basins. Connecting faults across the basin form an accommodation zone similar to other oblique rifts. The Neogene basin is

  14. Holocene phreatomagmatic eruptions alongside the densely populated northern shoreline of Lake Kivu, East African Rift: timing and hazard implications

    Poppe, Sam; Smets, Benoît; Fontijn, Karen; Rukeza, Montfort Bagalwa; De Marie Fikiri Migabo, Antoine; Milungu, Albert Kyambikwa; Namogo, Didier Birimwiragi; Kervyn, François; Kervyn, Matthieu


    The Virunga Volcanic Province (VVP) represents the most active zone of volcanism in the western branch of the East African Rift System. While the VVP's two historically active volcanoes, Nyamulagira and Nyiragongo, have built scoria cones and lava flows in the adjacent lava fields, several small phreatomagmatic eruptive centers lie along Lake Kivu's northern shoreline, highlighting the potential for explosive magma-water interaction. Their presence in the densely urbanized Sake-Goma-Gisenyi area necessitates an assessment of their eruptive mechanisms and chronology. Some of these eruptive centers possess multiple vents, and depositional contacts suggest distinct eruptive phases within a single structure. Depositional facies range from polymict tuff breccia to tuff and loose lapilli, often impacted by blocks and volcanic bombs. Along with the presence of dilute pyroclastic density current (PDC) deposits, indicators of magma-water interaction include the presence of fine palagonitized ash, ash aggregates, cross-bedding, and ballistic impact sags. We estimate that at least 15 phreatomagmatic eruptions occurred in the Holocene, during which Lake Kivu rose to its current water level. Radiocarbon dates of five paleosols in the top of volcanic tuff deposits range between ˜2500 and ˜150 cal. year bp and suggest centennial- to millennial-scale recurrence of phreatomagmatic activity. A vast part of the currently urbanized zone on the northern shoreline of Lake Kivu was most likely impacted by products from phreatomagmatic activity, including PDC events, during the Late Holocene, highlighting the need to consider explosive magma-water interaction as a potential scenario in future risk assessments.

  15. Mid-lithospheric Discontinuity Beneath the Malawi Rift, Deduced from Gravity Studies and its Relation to the Rifting Process.

    Njinju, E. A.; Atekwana, E. A.; Mickus, K. L.; Abdelsalam, M. G.; Atekwana, E. A.; Laó-Dávila, D. A.


    The World Gravity Map satellite gravity data were used to investigate the lithospheric structure beneath the Cenozoic-age Malawi Rift which forms the southern extension of the Western Branch of the East African Rift System. An analysis of the data using two-dimensional (2D) power spectrum methods indicates the two distinctive discontinuities at depths of 31‒44 km and 64‒124 km as defined by the two steepest slopes of the power spectrum curves. The shallower discontinuity corresponds to the crust-mantle boundary (Moho) and compares well with Moho depth determined from passive seismic studies. To understand the source of the deeper discontinuity, we applied the 2D power spectrum analysis to other rift segments of the Western Branch as well as regions with stable continental lithospheres where the lithospheric structure is well constrained through passive seismic studies. We found that the deeper discontinuity corresponds to a mid-lithospheric discontinuity (MLD), which is known to exist globally at depths between 60‒150 km and as determined by passive seismic studies. Our results show that beneath the Malawi Rift, there is no pattern of N-S elongated crustal thinning following the surface expression of the Malawi Rift. With the exception of a north-central region of crustal thinning (Malawi Rift forming a N-S trending zone with depths of 64‒80 km, showing a broad and gentle topography. We interpret the MLD as representing a sharp density contrast resulting from metasomatized lithosphere due to lateral migration along mobile belts of hot mantle melt or fluids from a distant plume and not from an ascending asthenosphere. These fluids weaken the lithosphere enhancing rift nucleation. The availability of satellite gravity worldwide makes gravity a promising technique for determining the MLD globally.

  16. The Cryogenian intra-continental rifting of Rodinia: Evidence from the Laurentian margin in eastern North America

    McClellan, Elizabeth; Gazel, Esteban


    The geologic history of the eastern North American (Laurentian) margin encompasses two complete Wilson cycles that brought about the assembly and subsequent disaggregation of two supercontinents, Rodinia and Pangea. In the southern and central Appalachian region, basement rocks were affected by two episodes of crustal extension separated by > 100 m.y.; a Cryogenian phase spanning the interval 765-700 Ma and an Ediacaran event at ~ 565 Ma. During the Cryogenian phase, the Mesoproterozoic continental crust was intruded by numerous A-type felsic plutons and extensional mafic dikes. At ~ 760-750 Ma a bimodal volcanic sequence erupted onto the uplifted and eroded basement. This sequence, known as the Mount Rogers Formation (MRF), comprises a bimodal basalt-rhyolite lower section and an upper section of dominantly peralkaline rhyolitic sheets. Here, we provide new geochemical evidence from the well-preserved volcanic rocks of the Cryogenian lower MRF, with the goal of elucidating the process that induced the initial stage of the break-up of Rodinia and how this affected the evolution of the eastern Laurentian margin. The geochemical compositions of the Cryogenian lavas are remarkably similar to modern continental intra-plate settings (e.g., East African Rift, Yellowstone-Snake River Plain). Geochemical, geophysical and tectonic evidence suggests that the common denominator controlling the melting processes in these settings is deep mantle plume activity. Thus, evidence from the MRF suggests that the initial phase of extension of the Laurentian margin at ~ 760-750 Ma was possibly triggered by mantle plume activity. It is possible that lithospheric weakness caused by a mantle plume that impacted Rodinia triggered the regional extension and produced the intra-continental rifting that preceded the breakup of the Laurentian margin.

  17. East Antarctic rifting triggers uplift of the Gamburtsev Mountains.

    Ferraccioli, Fausto; Finn, Carol A; Jordan, Tom A; Bell, Robin E; Anderson, Lester M; Damaske, Detlef


    The Gamburtsev Subglacial Mountains are the least understood tectonic feature on Earth, because they are completely hidden beneath the East Antarctic Ice Sheet. Their high elevation and youthful Alpine topography, combined with their location on the East Antarctic craton, creates a paradox that has puzzled researchers since the mountains were discovered in 1958. The preservation of Alpine topography in the Gamburtsevs may reflect extremely low long-term erosion rates beneath the ice sheet, but the mountains' origin remains problematic. Here we present the first comprehensive view of the crustal architecture and uplift mechanisms for the Gamburtsevs, derived from radar, gravity and magnetic data. The geophysical data define a 2,500-km-long rift system in East Antarctica surrounding the Gamburtsevs, and a thick crustal root beneath the range. We propose that the root formed during the Proterozoic assembly of interior East Antarctica (possibly about 1 Gyr ago), was preserved as in some old orogens and was rejuvenated during much later Permian (roughly 250 Myr ago) and Cretaceous (roughly 100 Myr ago) rifting. Much like East Africa, the interior of East Antarctica is a mosaic of Precambrian provinces affected by rifting processes. Our models show that the combination of rift-flank uplift, root buoyancy and the isostatic response to fluvial and glacial erosion explains the high elevation and relief of the Gamburtsevs. The evolution of the Gamburtsevs demonstrates that rifting and preserved orogenic roots can produce broad regions of high topography in continental interiors without significantly modifying the underlying Precambrian lithosphere.

  18. GPS and InSAR observations of ground deformation in the northern Malawi (Nyasa) rift from the SEGMeNT project

    Durkin, W. J., IV; Pritchard, M. E.; Elliott, J.; Zheng, W.; Saria, E.; Ntambila, D.; Chindandali, P. R. N.; Nooner, S. L.; Henderson, S. T.


    We describe new ground deformation observations from the SEGMeNT (Study of Extension and maGmatism in Malawi aNd Tanzania) spanning the northern sector of the Malawi (Nyasa) rift, which is one of the few places in the world suitable for a comprehensive study of early rifting processes. We installed 12 continuous GPS sensors spanning 700 km across the rift including Tanzania, Malawi, and Zambia to measure the width and gradient within the actively deforming zone. Most of these stations have 3 or more years of data now, although a few have shorter time series because of station vandalism. Spanning a smaller area, but with higher spatial resolution, we have created a time series of ground deformation using 150 interferograms from the Japanese ALOS-1 satellite spanning June 2007 to December 2010. We also present interferograms from other satellites including ERS, Envisat, and Sentinel spanning shorter time intervals. The observations include the 2009-2010 Karonga earthquake sequence and associated postseismic deformation as seen by multiple independent satellite lines-of-sight, that we model using a fault geometry determined using relocated aftershocks recorded by a local seismic array. We have not found any ground deformation at the Rungwe volcanic province from InSAR within our detection threshold ( 2 cm/yr), but we have observed localized seasonal ground movements exceeding 8 cm that are associated with subsidence in the dry season and uplift at the beginning of the wet season.

  19. Aurorae and Volcanic Eruptions


    Thermal-IR Observations of Jupiter and Io with ISAAC at the VLT Summary Impressive thermal-infrared images have been obtained of the giant planet Jupiter during tests of a new detector in the ISAAC instrument on the ESO Very Large Telescope (VLT) at the Paranal Observatory (Chile). . They show in particular the full extent of the northern auroral ring and part of the southern aurora. A volcanic eruption was also imaged on Io , the very active inner Jovian moon. Although these observations are of an experimental nature, they demonstrate a great potential for regular monitoring of the Jovian magnetosphere by ground-based telescopes together with space-based facilities. They also provide the added benefit of direct comparison with the terrestrial magnetosphere. PR Photo 21a/01 : ISAAC image of Jupiter (L-band: 3.5-4.0 µm) . PR Photo 21b/01 : ISAAC image of Jupiter (Narrow-band 4.07 µm) . PR Photo 21c/01 : ISAAC image of Jupiter (Narrow-band 3.28 µm) . PR Photo 21d/01 : ISAAC image of Jupiter (Narrow-band 3.21 µm) . PR Photo 21e/01 : ISAAC image of the Jovian aurorae (false-colour). PR Photo 21f/01 : ISAAC image of volcanic activity on Io . Addendum : The Jovian aurorae and polar haze. Aladdin Meets Jupiter Thermal-infrared images of Jupiter and its volcanic moon Io have been obtained during a series of system tests with the new Aladdin detector in the Infrared Spectrometer And Array Camera (ISAAC) , in combination with an upgrade of the ESO-developed detector control electronics IRACE. This state-of-the-art instrument is attached to the 8.2-m VLT ANTU telescope at the ESO Paranal Observatory. The observations were made on November 14, 2000, through various filters that isolate selected wavebands in the thermal-infrared spectral region [1]. They include a broad-band L-filter (wavelength interval 3.5 - 4.0 µm) as well as several narrow-band filters (3.21, 3.28 and 4.07 µm). The filters allow to record the light from different components of the Jovian atmosphere

  20. Geopulsation, Volcanism and Astronomical Periods

    Yang Xuexiang; Chen Dianyou; Yang Xiaoying; Yang Shuchen


    Volcanism is mainly controlled by the intermittent release of energy in the earth. As far as the differential rotation of the earth's inner core is concerned, the Galactic Year may change the gravitational constant G, the solar radiative quantity and the moving speed of the solar system and affect the exchange of angular momentum between core and mantle as well as the energy exchange between crust and mantle. As a result, this leads to eruptions of superplumes and magma, and controls the energy flow from core - mantle boundary (CMB) to crust. When the earth' s speed decreases, it will release a huge amount of energy. They are the reason of the correspondence of the volcanic cycles one by one with the astronomical periods one by one. According to the astronomical periods, volcanic eruptions may possibly be predicted in the future.

  1. Volcanic eruptions and solar activity

    Stothers, Richard B.


    The historical record of large volcanic eruptions from 1500 to 1980 is subjected to detailed time series analysis. In two weak but probably statistically significant periodicities of about 11 and 80 yr, the frequency of volcanic eruptions increases (decreases) slightly around the times of solar minimum (maximum). Time series analysis of the volcanogenic acidities in a deep ice core from Greenland reveals several very long periods ranging from about 80 to about 350 yr which are similar to the very slow solar cycles previously detected in auroral and C-14 records. Solar flares may cause changes in atmospheric circulation patterns that abruptly alter the earth's spin. The resulting jolt probably triggers small earthquakes which affect volcanism.

  2. Geochemical study for volcanic surveillance

    Panichi, C.; La Ruffa, G. [Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, International Institute for Geothermal Research Ghezzano, PI (Italy)


    For years, geologists have been striving to reconstruct volcanic eruptions from the analysis of pyroclastic deposits and lava flows on the surface of the earth and in the oceans. This effort has produced valuable information on volcanic petrology and magma generation, separation, mixing, crystallisation, and interaction with water in phreatomagmatic and submarine eruptions. The volcanological process are tied to the dynamics of the earth's crust and lithosphere. The mantle, subducted oceanic crust, and continental crust contain different rock types and are sources of different magmas. Magmas consist primarily of completely or partially molten silicates containing volatile materials either dissolved in the melt or as bubbles of gas. The silicate and volatile portions affect the physical properties of magma and, therefore, the nature of a volcanic eruption.

  3. Models of volcanic eruption hazards

    Wohletz, K.H.


    Volcanic eruptions pose an ever present but poorly constrained hazard to life and property for geothermal installations in volcanic areas. Because eruptions occur sporadically and may limit field access, quantitative and systematic field studies of eruptions are difficult to complete. Circumventing this difficulty, laboratory models and numerical simulations are pivotal in building our understanding of eruptions. For example, the results of fuel-coolant interaction experiments show that magma-water interaction controls many eruption styles. Applying these results, increasing numbers of field studies now document and interpret the role of external water eruptions. Similarly, numerical simulations solve the fundamental physics of high-speed fluid flow and give quantitative predictions that elucidate the complexities of pyroclastic flows and surges. A primary goal of these models is to guide geologists in searching for critical field relationships and making their interpretations. Coupled with field work, modeling is beginning to allow more quantitative and predictive volcanic hazard assessments.

  4. A GIS-based methodology for the estimation of potential volcanic damage and its application to Tenerife Island, Spain

    Scaini, C.; Felpeto, A.; Martí, J.; Carniel, R.


    This paper presents a GIS-based methodology to estimate damages produced by volcanic eruptions. The methodology is constituted by four parts: definition and simulation of eruptive scenarios, exposure analysis, vulnerability assessment and estimation of expected damages. Multi-hazard eruptive scenarios are defined for the Teide-Pico Viejo active volcanic complex, and simulated through the VORIS tool. The exposure analysis identifies the elements exposed to the hazard at stake and focuses on the relevant assets for the study area. The vulnerability analysis is based on previous studies on the built environment and complemented with the analysis of transportation and urban infrastructures. Damage assessment is performed associating a qualitative damage rating to each combination of hazard and vulnerability. This operation consists in a GIS-based overlap, performed for each hazardous phenomenon considered and for each element. The methodology is then automated into a GIS-based tool using an ArcGIS® program. Given the eruptive scenarios and the characteristics of the exposed elements, the tool produces expected damage maps. The tool is applied to the Icod Valley (North of Tenerife Island) which is likely to be affected by volcanic phenomena in case of eruption from both the Teide-Pico Viejo volcanic complex and North-West basaltic rift. Results are thematic maps of vulnerability and damage that can be displayed at different levels of detail, depending on the user preferences. The aim of the tool is to facilitate territorial planning and risk management in active volcanic areas.

  5. Tectonics and sedimentology of post-rift anomalous vertical movements: the rifted margin of Morocco

    Bertotti, Giovanni; Charton, Remi; Luber, Tim; Arantegui, Angel; Redfern, Jonathan


    Roughly 15 years ago it was discovered that substantial parts of the Morocco passive continental margin experienced km-scale, post-rift exhumation. It was predicted that the sands resulting from the associated erosion would be present in the offshore and potentially form hydrocarbon reservoirs. At the same time, anomalous post-rift vertical movements have been documented in various localities of the world and rifted continental margins are at present exciting objects of research. Following intense research efforts the knowledge of the kinematics of vertical movements and their implications for sedimentary systems is increasing. The low-T geochronology initially limited to the classical Meseta-Massif Ancien de Marrakech transect has been expanded reaching the Reguibate Massif to the S and covering, possibly more importantly, one transect in E-W direction a