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Sample records for subducting oceanic lithosphere

  1. Geochemical evidence for the melting of subducting oceanic lithosphere at plate edges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yogodzinski, G. M.; Lees, J. M.; Churikova, T. G.; Dorendorf, F.; Wöerner, G.; Volynets, O. N.

    2001-01-01

    Most island-arc magmatism appears to result from the lowering of the melting point of peridotite within the wedge of mantle above subducting slabs owing to the introduction of fluids from the dehydration of subducting oceanic crust. Volcanic rocks interpreted to contain a component of melt (not just a fluid) from the subducting slab itself are uncommon, but possible examples have been recognized in the Aleutian islands, Baja California, Patagonia and elsewhere. The geochemically distinctive rocks from these areas, termed `adakites', are often associated with subducting plates that are young and warm, and therefore thought to be more prone to melting. But the subducting lithosphere in some adakite locations (such as the Aleutian islands) appears to be too old and hence too cold to melt. This implies either that our interpretation of adakite geochemistry is incorrect, or that our understanding of the tectonic context of adakites is incomplete. Here we present geochemical data from the Kamchatka peninsula and the Aleutian islands that reaffirms the slab-melt interpretation of adakites, but in the tectonic context of the exposure to mantle flow around the edge of a torn subducting plate. We conclude that adakites are likely to form whenever the edge of a subducting plate is warmed or ablated by mantle flow. The use of adakites as tracers for such plate geometry may improve our understanding of magma genesis and thermal structure in a variety of subduction-zone environments.

  2. New seismic observation on the lithosphere and slab subduction beneath the Indo-Myanmar block: Implications for continent oblique subduction and transition to oceanic slab subduction

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    Jiang, M.; He, Y.; Zheng, T.; Mon, C. T.; Thant, M.; Hou, G.; Ai, Y.; Chen, Q. F.; Sein, K.

    2017-12-01

    The Indo-Myanmar block locates to the southern and southeastern of the Eastern Himalayan Syntax (EHS) and marks a torsional boundary of the collision between the Indian and Eurasian plates. There are two fundamental questions concerned on the tectonics of Indo-Myanmar block since the Cenozoic time. One is whether and how the oblique subduction is active in the deep; the other is where and how the transition from oceanic subduction and continental subduction operates. However, the two problems are still under heated debate mainly because the image of deep structure beneath this region is still blurring. Since June, 2016, we have executed the China-Myanmar Geophysical Survey in the Myanmar Orogen (CMGSMO) and deployed the first portable seismic array in Myanmar in cooperation with Myanmar Geosciences Society (MGS). This array contains 70 stations with a dense-deployed main profile across the Indo-Myanmar Range, Central Basin and Shan State Plateau along latitude of 22° and a 2-D network covering the Indo-Myanmar Range and the western part of the Central Basin. Based on the seismic data collected by the new array, we conducted the studies on the lithospheric structure using the routine surface wave tomography and receiver function CCP stacking. The preliminary results of surface wave tomography displayed a remarkable high seismic velocity fabric in the uppermost of mantle beneath the Indo-Myanmar Range and Central Basin, which was interpreted as the subducted slab eastward. Particularly, we found a low velocity bulk within the high-velocity slab, which was likely to be a slab window due to the slab tearing. The preliminary results of receiver function CCP stacking showed the obvious variations of the lithospheric structures from the Indo-Myanmar Range to the Central Basin and Shan State Plateau. The lithospheric structure beneath the Indo-Myanmar Range is more complex than that beneath the Central Basin and Shan State Plateau. Our resultant high-resolution images

  3. Intermediate-Depth Subduction Earthquakes Recorded by Pseudotachylyte in Dry Eclogite-Facies Oceanic Lithosphere from the Alps

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    Scambelluri, M.; Pennacchioni, G.; Gilio, M.; Bestmann, M.

    2016-12-01

    While geophysical studies and laboratory experiments provide much information on subduction earthquakes, field studies identifying the rock types for earthquake development and the deep seismogenic environments are still scarce. To date, fluid overpressure and volume decrease during hydrous mineral breakdown the widely favoured trigger of subduction earthquakes in serpentinized lithospheric mantle and hydrated low-velocity layers atop slabs. Here we document up to 40 cm-thick pseudotachylyte (PST) in Alpine oceanic gabbro and peridotite (2-2.5 GPa-550-620°C), the analogue of a modern cold subducting oceanic lithosphere. These rocks mostly remained unaltered dry systems; only very minor domains (<1%) record partial hydration and static eclogitic metamorphism. Meta-peridotite shows high-pressure olivine + antigorite (garnet + zoisite + chlorite after mantle plagioclase); meta-gabbro develops omphacite + zoisite + talc + chloritoid + garnet. Abundant syn-eclogitic pseudotachylyte cut the dry gabbro-peridotite and the eclogitized domains. In meta-peridotite, PST shows olivine, orthopyroxene, spinel microliths and clasts of high-pressure olivine + antigorite and garnet + zoisite + chlorite aggregates. In metagabbro, microfaults in damage zones near PST cut brecciated igneous pyroxene cemented by omphacite. In unaltered gabbro, glassy PST contains micron-scale garnet replacing plagioclase microliths during, or soon after, PST cooling. In the host rock, garnet coronas between igneous olivine and plagioclase only occur near PST and between closely spaced PST veins. Absence of garnet away from PST indicates that garnet growth was triggered by mineral seeds and by heat released by PST. The above evidence shows that pseudotachylyte formed at eclogite-facies conditions. In such setting, strong, dry, metastable gabbro-peridotite concentrate stress to generate large intermediate depth subduction earthquakes without much involvement of free fluid.

  4. Fertile lithospheric mantle beneath the northwestern North China and its implication for the subduction of the Paleo-Asian Ocean

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    Dai, H. K.; Zheng, J.; Su, Y. P.; Xiong, Q.; Pan, S. K.

    2017-12-01

    The nature of the sub-continental lithospheric mantle (SCLM) beneath the western North China Craton (NCC) is poorly known, which hinders understanding the cratonic response to the southward subduction of the Paleo-Asian Ocean. Mineral chemical data of spinel lherzolite xenoliths from newly discovered Cenozoic Langshan basalts in the northwestern part of the craton have been integrated with data from other localities across the western NCC, to put constrains on the SCLM nature and to explore the reworking processes involved. Compositions of mineral cores (i.e., Mg# in olivine = 88 91) and P-T estimates ( 1.2 GPa, 950 oC) suggest the Langshan xenoliths/xenocrysts represent fragments of the uppermost SCLM and experienced ancient continental crust, and 2) the sharp decrease in lithospheric thickness from the inner part to the northern margin of the western NCC, the SCLM beneath the northwestern part should have been strongly rejuvenated or replaced by fertile and non-cratonic mantle. Combined with other geological evidence on the northwestern margin, the mantle replacement and metasomatism were likely triggered by southward subduction of the Paleo-Asian Ocean.

  5. Alpine Serpentinite Geochemistry As Key To Define Timing Of Oceanic Lithosphere Accretion To The Subduction Plate Interface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilio, M.; Scambelluri, M.; Agostini, S.; Godard, M.; Pettke, D. T.; Angiboust, S.

    2016-12-01

    Isotopic (Pb, Sr and B) and trace element (B, Be, As, Sb, U, Th) signatures of serpentinites are useful geochemical tools to assess element exchange and fluid-rock interactions in subduction zone settings. They help to unravel geological history and tectonic evolution of subduction serpentinites and associated meta-oceanic crust. Sedimentary-derived fluid influx within HP plate interface environments strongly enriches serpentinites in As, Sb, B, U and Th and resets their B, Sr and Pb isotopic compositions. This HP metasomatic signature is preserved during exhumation and/or released at higher PT through de-serpentinization, fueling partial melting in the sub-arc mantle and recycling such fingerprint into arc magmas. This study focuses on the subduction recrystallization, geochemical diversity and fluid-rock interaction recorded by high- to ultra-high pressure (HP, UHP) Alpine serpentinites from the subducted oceanic plate (Cignana Unit, Zermatt-Saas Complex, Monviso and Lanzo Ultramafic Massifs). The As and Sb compositions of the HP-UHP Alpine ophiolitic rocks reveal the interaction between serpentinite and crust-derived fluids during their emplacement along the plate interface. This enables to define a hypothetical architecture of the Alpine subduction interface, considering large ultramafic slices. In this scenario, the Lanzo peridotite and serpentinite retain an As-Sb composition comparable to DM and PM: i.e. they experienced little exchange with sediment-derived fluids. Lanzo thus belonged to sections of the subducting plate, afar from the plate interface. Serpentinites from the Lago di Cignana Unit and Monviso and Voltri are richer in As and Sb, showing moderate to strong interaction with sediment- and crust-derived fluids during subduction (i.e. they behaved as open systems). These serpentinite slices accreted at the plate interface and exchanged with slab-derived fluids at different depths during Alpine subduction: Voltri accreted at shallower conditions (50

  6. Geothermal structure of the eastern Black Sea basin and the eastern Pontides orogenic belt: Implications for subduction polarity of Tethys oceanic lithosphere

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    Nafiz Maden

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available The numerical results of thermal modeling studies indicate that the lithosphere is cold and strong beneath the Black Sea basin. The thermal lithospheric thickness increases southward from the eastern Pontides orogenic belt (49.4 km to Black Sea basin (152.2 km. The Moho temperature increases from 367 °C in the trench to 978 °C in the arc region. The heat flow values for the Moho surface change between 16.4 mW m−2 in the Black Sea basin and 56.9 mW m−2 in the eastern Pontides orogenic belt. Along the southern Black Sea coast, the trench region has a relatively low geothermal potential with respect to the arc and back-arc region. The numerical studies support the existence of southward subduction beneath the Pontides during the late Mesozoic–Cenozoic.

  7. Buckling instabilities of subducted lithosphere beneath the transition zone

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ribe, N.M.; Stutzmann, E.; Ren, Y.; Hilst, R.D. van der

    2007-01-01

    A sheet of viscous fluid poured onto a surface buckles periodically to generate a pile of regular folds. Recent tomographic images beneath subduction zones, together with quantitative fluid mechanical scaling laws, suggest that a similar instability can occur when slabs of subducted oceanic

  8. Petrogenesis of the Pulang porphyry complex, southwestern China: Implications for porphyry copper metallogenesis and subduction of the Paleo-Tethys Oceanic lithosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Peng; Dong, Guo-Chen; Zhao, Guo-Chun; Han, Yi-Gui; Li, Yong-Ping

    2018-04-01

    The Pulang complex is located in the southern segment of the Yidun Arc in the Sanjiang Tethys belt, southwestern China. It is composed of quartz diorite, quartz monzonite and granodiorite porphyries, and hosts the super-large Pulang deposit. This study presents new U-Pb geochronological, major-trace elemental and Sr-Nd-Hf isotopic data to constrain the petrogenesis of the Pulang complex and to evaluate its significances for porphyric mineralization and tectonic evolution of the Paleo-Tethys Ocean. The zircon U-Pb dating yields ages ranging from 208 Ma to 214 Ma. Geochemically, the Pulang complex has high Sr and MgO contents, and high Sr/Y and La/Yb ratios, but low Yb and Y contents, displaying adakitic affinities. However, it has moderate Sr/Y and La/Yb ratios, and high Rb contents (32 to 202 ppm). The Pulang samples plot into the transitional field between adakites and normal arc rocks, differing from typical adakites. It is attributed to the assimilation of 10-15% crustal components. The zircon εHf(t) (-4.6 to -2.5), whole-rock (87Sr/86Sr)i (0.7052 to 0.7102), εNd(t) (-0.62 to 2.12) values and adakitic affinities suggest that the Pulang complex was derived from a basaltic slab-melt source and reacted with peridotite during ascending through an enriched asthenospheric mantle wedge. The basaltic slab-melts likely resulted from the westward subduction of the Ganzi-Litang oceanic plate (a branch of the Paleo-Tethys). As far as the metallogenesis concerned, three factors in mineralization are proposed in this paper. The country rock, quartz diorite porphyry, has higher Cu contents than the mantle (average 30 ppm), suggesting that ore-forming magma was derived from a Cu-enriched source, which is a crucial contribution to the late mineralization to form the super-large Pulang deposit. In addition, the barren quartz diorite, granodiorite, and ore-bearing quartz monzonite porphyries are all characterized by high oxygen fugacity, which is another important factor for the

  9. Finding the last 200Ma of subducted lithosphere in tomography and incorporating it into plate reconstructions

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    Suppe, J.; Wu, J.; Chen, Y. W.

    2016-12-01

    Precise plate-tectonic reconstruction of the Earth has been constrained largely by the seafloor magnetic-anomaly record of the present oceans formed during the dispersal of the last supercontinent since 200Ma. The corresponding world that was lost to subduction has been only sketchily known. We have developed methodologies to map in 3D these subducted slabs of lithosphere in seismic tomography and unfold them to the Earth surface, constraining their initial size, shapes and locations. Slab edges are commonly formed at times of plate reorganization (for example bottom edges typically record initiation of subduction) such that unfolded slabs fit together at times of reorganization, as we illustrate for the Nazca slab at 80Ma and the western Pacific slabs between Kamchatka and New Zealand at 50Ma. Mapping to date suggests that a relatively complete and decipherable record of lithosphere subducted over the last 200Ma may exist in the mantle today, providing a storehouse for new discoveries. We briefly illustrate our procedure for obtaining slab-constrained plate-tectonic models from tomography with our recent study of the Philippine Sea plate, whose motions and tectonic history have been the least known of the major plates because it has been isolated from the global plate and hotspot circuit by trenches. We mapped and unfolded 28 subducted slabs in the mantle under East Asia and Australia/Oceania to depths of 1200km, with a subducted area of 25% of present-day global oceanic lithosphere, and incorporated them as constraints into a new globally-consistent plate reconstruction of the Philippine Sea and surrounding East Asia, leading to a number of new insights, including: [1] discovery of a major (8000 km x 2500 km) set of vanished oceans that we call the East Asia Sea that existed between the Pacific and Indian Oceans, now represented by flat slabs in the lower mantle under present-day Philippine Sea, eastern Sundaland and northern Australia and [2] the Philippine Sea

  10. The Two Subduction Zones of the Southern Caribbean: Lithosphere Tearing and Continental Margin Recycling in the East, Flat Slab Subduction and Laramide-Style Uplifts in the West

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    Levander, A.; Bezada, M. J.; Niu, F.; Schmitz, M.

    2015-12-01

    The southern Caribbean plate boundary is a complex strike-slip fault system bounded by oppositely vergent subduction zones, the Antilles subduction zone in the east, and a currently locked Caribbean-South American subduction zone in the west (Bilham and Mencin, 2013). Finite-frequency teleseismic P-wave tomography images both the Atlanic (ATL) and the Caribbean (CAR) plates subducting steeply in opposite directions to transition zone depths under northern South America. Ps receiver functions show a depressed 660 discontinuity and thickened transition zone associated with each subducting plate. In the east the oceanic (ATL) part of the South American (SA) plate subducts westward beneath the CAR, initiating the El Pilar-San Sebastian strike slip system, a subduction-transform edge propagator (STEP) fault (Govers and Wortel, 2005). The point at which the ATL tears away from SA as it descends into the mantle is evidenced by the Paria cluster seismicity at depths of 60-110 km (Russo et al, 1993). Body wave tomography and lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB) thickness determined from Sp and Ps receiver functions and Rayleigh waves suggest that the descending ATL also viscously removes the bottom third to half of the SA continental margin lithospheric mantle as it descends. This has left thinned continental lithosphere under northern SA in the wake of the eastward migrating Antilles subduction zone. The thinned lithosphere occupies ~70% of the length of the El Pilar-San Sebastian fault system, from ~64oW to ~69oW, and extends inland several hundred kilometers. In northwestern SA the CAR subducts east-southeast at low angle under northern Colombia and western Venezuela. The subducting CAR is at least 200 km wide, extending from northernmost Colombia as far south as the Bucaramanga nest seismicity. The CAR descends steeply under Lake Maracaibo and the Merida Andes. This flat slab is associated with three Neogene basement cored, Laramide-style uplifts: the Santa Marta

  11. Double subduction of continental lithosphere, a key to form wide plateau

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    Replumaz, Anne; Funiciello, Francesca; Reitano, Riccardo; Faccenna, Claudio; Balon, Marie

    2016-04-01

    The mechanisms involved in the creation of the high and wide topography, like the Tibetan Plateau, are still controversial. In particular, the behaviour of the indian and asian lower continental lithosphere during the collision is a matter of debate, either thickening, densifying and delaminating, or keeping its rigidity and subducting. But since several decades seismicity, seismic profiles and global tomography highlight the lithospheric structure of the Tibetan Plateau, and make the hypotheses sustaining the models more precise. In particular, in the western syntaxis, it is now clear that the indian lithosphere subducts northward beneath the Hindu Kush down to the transition zone, while the asian one subducts southward beneath Pamir (e.g. Negredo et al., 2007; Kufner et al., 2015). Such double subduction of continental lithospheres with opposite vergence has also been inferred in the early collision time. Cenozoic volcanic rocks between 50 and 30 Ma in the Qiangtang block have been interpreted as related to an asian subduction beneath Qiangtang at that time (De Celles et al., 2011; Guillot and Replumaz, 2013). We present here analogue experiments silicone/honey to explore the subduction of continental lithosphere, using a piston as analogue of far field forces. We explore the parameters that control the subductions dynamics of the 2 continental lithospheres and the thickening of the plates at the surface, and compare with the Tibetan Plateau evolution. We show that a continental lithosphere is able to subduct in a collision context, even lighter than the mantle, if the plate is rigid enough. In that case the horizontal force due to the collision context, modelled by the piston push transmitted by the indenter, is the driving force, not the slab pull which is negative. It is not a subduction driving by the weight of the slab, but a subduction induced by the collision, that we could call "collisional subduction".

  12. Using open sidewalls for modelling self-consistent lithosphere subduction dynamics

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    Chertova, M.V.; Geenen, T.; van den Berg, A.; Spakman, W.

    2012-01-01

    Subduction modelling in regional model domains, in 2-D or 3-D, is commonly performed using closed (impermeable) vertical boundaries. Here we investigate the merits of using open boundaries for 2-D modelling of lithosphere subduction. Our experiments are focused on using open and closed (free

  13. 3D Numerical Examination of Continental Mantle Lithosphere Response to Lower Crust Eclogitization and Nearby Slab Subduction

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    Janbakhsh, P.; Pysklywec, R.

    2017-12-01

    2D numerical modeling techniques have made great contribution to understanding geodynamic processes involved in crustal and lithospheric scale deformations for the past 20 years. The aim of this presentation is to expand the scope covered by previous researchers to 3 dimensions to address out-of-plane intrusion and extrusion of mantle material in and out of model space, and toroidal mantle wedge flows. In addition, 3D velocity boundary conditions can create more realistic models to replicate real case scenarios. 3D numerical experiments that will be presented are designed to investigate the density and viscosity effects of lower crustal eclogitization on the decoupling process of continental mantle lithosphere from the crust and its delamination. In addition, these models examine near-field effects of a subducting ocean lithosphere and a lithospheric scale fault zone on the evolution of the processes. The model solutions and predictions will also be compared against the Anatolian geology where subduction of Aegean and Arabian slabs, and the northern boundary with the North Anatolian Fault Zone are considered as two main contributing factors to anomalous crustal uplift, missing mantle lithosphere, and anomalous surface heat flux.

  14. Seismic Constraints on the Lithosphere-Asthenosphere Boundary Beneath the Izu-Bonin Area: Implications for the Oceanic Lithospheric Thinning

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    Cui, Qinghui; Wei, Rongqiang; Zhou, Yuanze; Gao, Yajian; Li, Wenlan

    2018-01-01

    The lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB) is the seismic discontinuity with negative velocity contrasts in the upper mantle. Seismic detections on the LAB are of great significance in understanding the plate tectonics, mantle convection and lithospheric evolution. In this paper, we study the LAB in the Izu-Bonin subduction zone using four deep earthquakes recorded by the permanent and temporary seismic networks of the USArray. The LAB is clearly revealed with sP precursors (sdP) through the linear slant stacking. As illustrated by reflected points of the identified sdP phases, the depth of LAB beneath the Izu-Bonin Arc (IBA) is about 65 km with a range of 60-68 km. The identified sdP phases with opposite polarities relative to sP phases have the average relative amplitude of 0.21, which means a 3.7% velocity drop and implies partial melting in the asthenosphere. On the basis of the crustal age data, the lithosphere beneath the IBA is located at the 1100 °C isotherm calculated with the GDH1 model. Compared to tectonically stable areas, such as the West Philippine Basin (WPB) and Parece Vela Basin (PVB) in the Philippine Sea, the lithosphere beneath the Izu-Bonin area shows the obvious lithospheric thinning. According to the geodynamic and petrological studies, the oceanic lithospheric thinning phenomenon can be attributed to the strong erosion of the small-scale convection in the mantle wedge enriched in volatiles and melts.

  15. Detachments of the subducted Indian continental lithosphere based on 3D finite-frequency tomographic images

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    Liang, X.; Tian, X.; Wang, M.

    2017-12-01

    Indian plate collided with Eurasian plate at 60 Ma and there are about 3000 km crustal shortening since the continental-continental collision. At least one third of the total amount of crustal shortening between Indian and Eurasian plates could not be accounted by thickened Tibetan crust and surface erosion. It will need a combination of possible transfer of lower crust to the mantle by eclogitization and lateral extrusion. Based on the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary images beneath the Tibetan plateau, there is also at least the same amount deficit for lithospheric mantle subducted into upper/lower mantle or lateral extrusion with the crust. We have to recover a detailed Indian continental lithosphere image beneath the plateau in order to explain this deficit of mass budget. Combining the new teleseismic body waves recorded by SANDWICH passive seismic array with waveforms from several previous temporary seismic arrays, we carried out finite-frequency tomographic inversions to image three-dimensional velocity structures beneath southern and central Tibetan plateau to examine the possible image of subducted Indian lithosphere in the Tibetan upper mantle. We have recovered a continuous high velocity body in upper mantle and piece-wised high velocity anomalies in the mantle transition zone. Based on their geometry and relative locations, we interpreted these high velocity anomalies as the subducted and detached Indian lithosphere at different episodes of the plateau evolution. Detachments of the subducted Indian lithosphere should have a crucial impact on the volcanism activities and uplift history of the plateau.

  16. Global equivalent magnetization of the oceanic lithosphere

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    Dyment, J.; Choi, Y.; Hamoudi, M.; Lesur, V.; Thebault, E.

    2015-11-01

    As a by-product of the construction of a new World Digital Magnetic Anomaly Map over oceanic areas, we use an original approach based on the global forward modeling of seafloor spreading magnetic anomalies and their comparison to the available marine magnetic data to derive the first map of the equivalent magnetization over the World's ocean. This map reveals consistent patterns related to the age of the oceanic lithosphere, the spreading rate at which it was formed, and the presence of mantle thermal anomalies which affects seafloor spreading and the resulting lithosphere. As for the age, the equivalent magnetization decreases significantly during the first 10-15 Myr after its formation, probably due to the alteration of crustal magnetic minerals under pervasive hydrothermal alteration, then increases regularly between 20 and 70 Ma, reflecting variations in the field strength or source effects such as the acquisition of a secondary magnetization. As for the spreading rate, the equivalent magnetization is twice as strong in areas formed at fast rate than in those formed at slow rate, with a threshold at ∼40 km/Myr, in agreement with an independent global analysis of the amplitude of Anomaly 25. This result, combined with those from the study of the anomalous skewness of marine magnetic anomalies, allows building a unified model for the magnetic structure of normal oceanic lithosphere as a function of spreading rate. Finally, specific areas affected by thermal mantle anomalies at the time of their formation exhibit peculiar equivalent magnetization signatures, such as the cold Australian-Antarctic Discordance, marked by a lower magnetization, and several hotspots, marked by a high magnetization.

  17. Amount of Asian lithospheric mantle subducted during the India/Asia collision

    OpenAIRE

    Replumaz, A.; Guillot, S.; Villaseñor, Antonio; Negredo, A. M.

    2013-01-01

    Body wave seismic tomography is a successful technique for mapping lithospheric material sinking into the mantle. Focusing on the India/Asia collision zone, we postulate the existence of several Asian continental slabs, based on seismic global tomography. We observe a lower mantle positive anomaly between 1100 and 900 km depths, that we interpret as the signature of a past subduction process of Asian lithosphere, based on the anomaly position relative to positive anomalies related to Indian c...

  18. Subduction initiation, recycling of Alboran lower crust, and intracrustal emplacement of subcontinental lithospheric mantle in the Westernmost Mediterranean

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    Varas-Reus, María Isabel; Garrido, Carlos J.; Bosch, Delphine; Marchesi, Claudio; Hidas, Károly; Booth-Rea, Guillermo; Acosta-Vigil, Antonio

    2015-04-01

    Unraveling the tectonic settings and processes involved in the annihilation of subcontinental mantle lithosphere is of paramount importance for our understanding of the endurance of continents through Earth history. Unlike ophiolites -- their oceanic mantle lithosphere counterparts -- the mechanisms of emplacement of the subcontinental mantle lithosphere in orogens is still poorly known. The emplacement of subcontinental lithospheric mantle peridotites is often attributed to extension in rifted passive margins or continental backarc basins, accretionary processes in subduction zones, or some combination of these processes. One of the most prominent features of the westernmost Mediterranean Alpine orogenic arcs is the presence of the largest outcrops worldwide of diamond facies, subcontinental mantle peridotite massifs; unveiling the mechanisms of emplacement of these massifs may provide important clues on processes involved in the destruction of continents. The western Mediterranean underwent a complex Alpine evolution of subduction initiation, slab fragmentation, and rollback within a context of slow convergence of Africa and Europe In the westernmost Mediterranean, the alpine orogeny ends in the Gibraltar tight arc, which is bounded by the Betic, Rif and Tell belts that surround the Alboran and Algero-Balearic basins. The internal units of these belts are mostly constituted of an allochthonous lithospheric domain that collided and overthrusted Mesozoic and Tertiary sedimentary rocks of the Mesozoic-Paleogene, South Iberian and Maghrebian rifted continental paleomargins. Subcontinental lithospheric peridotite massifs are intercalated between polymetamorphic internal units of the Betic (Ronda, Ojen and Carratraca massifs), Rif (Beni Bousera), and Tell belts. In the Betic chain, the internal zones of the allochthonous Alboran domain include, from bottom to top, polymetamorphic rock of the Alpujarride and Malaguide complexes. The Ronda peridotite massif -- the

  19. Shallow and buoyant lithospheric subduction : causes and implications from thermo-chemical numerical modeling

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hunen, Jeroen van

    2001-01-01

    Where two lithospheric plates converge on the Earth, one of them disappears into the mantle. The dominant driving mechanism for plate motion is regarded to be `slab pull': the subducted plate, the slab, exerts a pulling force on the attached plate at the surface. However, what has been puzzling

  20. The Role of a Weak Layer at the Base of an Oceanic Plate on Subduction Dynamics

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    Carluccio, R.; Moresi, L. N.; Kaus, B. J. P.

    2017-12-01

    Plate tectonics relies on the concept of an effectively rigid lithospheric lid moving over a weaker asthenosphere. In this model, the lithosphere asthenosphere boundary (LAB) is a first-order discontinuity that accommodates differential motion between tectonic plates and the underlying mantle. Recent seismic studies have revealed the existence of a low velocity and high electrical conductivity layer at the base of subducting tectonic plates. This thin layer has been interpreted as being weak and slightly buoyant and it has the potential to influence the dynamics of subducting plates. However, geodynamically, the role of a weak layer at the base of the lithosphere remains poorly studied, especially at subduction zones. Here, we use numerical models to investigate the first-order effects of a weak buoyant layer at the LAB on subduction dynamics. We employ both 2-D and 3-D models in which the slab and the mantle are either linear viscous or have a more realistic temperature-dependent, visco-elastic-plastic rheology and we vary the properties of the layer at the base of the oceanic lithosphere. Our results show that the presence of a weak layer affects the dynamics of plates, primarily by increasing the subduction speed and also influences the morphology of subducting slab. For moderate viscosity contrasts (1000), it can also change the morphology of the subduction itself and for thinner and more buoyant layers, the overall effect is reduced. The overall impact of this effects may depend on the effective contrast between the properties of the slab and the weak layer + mantle systems, and so, by the layer characteristics modelled such as its viscosity, density, thickness and rheology. In this study, we show and summarise this impact consistently with the recent seismological constraints and observations, for example, a pile-up of weak material in the bending zone of the subducting plate.

  1. In situ rheology of the oceanic lithosphere along the Hawaiian ridge

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    Pleus, A.; Ito, G.; Wessel, P.; Frazer, L. N.

    2017-12-01

    Much of our quantitative understanding of lithospheric rheology is based on rock deformation experiments carried out in the laboratory. The accuracy of the relationships between stress and lithosphere deformation, however, are subject to large extrapolations, given that laboratory strain rates (10-7 s-1) are much greater than geologic rates (10-15 to 10-12 s-1). In situ deformation experiments provide independent constraints and are therefore needed to improve our understanding of natural rheology. Zhong and Watts [2013] presented such a study around the main Hawaiian Islands and concluded that the lithosphere flexure requires a much weaker rheology than predicted by laboratory experiments. We build upon this study by investigating flexure around the older volcanoes of the Hawaiian ridge. The ridge is composed of a diversity of volcano sizes that loaded seafloor of nearly constant age (85+/-8 Ma); this fortunate situation allows for an analysis of flexural responses to large variations in applied loads at nearly constant age-dependent lithosphere thermal structure. Our dataset includes new marine gravity and multi-beam bathymetry data collected onboard the Schmidt Ocean Institute's R/V Falkor. These data, along with forward models of lithospheric flexure, are used to obtain a joint posterior probability density function for model parameters that control the lithosphere's flexural response to a given load. These parameters include the frictional coefficient constraining brittle failure in the shallow lithosphere, the activation energy for the low-temperature plasticity regime, and the geothermal gradient of the Hawaiian lithosphere. The resulting in situ rheological parameters may be used to verify or update those derived in the lab. Attaining accurate lithospheric rheological properties is important to our knowledge, not only of the evolution of the Hawaiian lithosphere, but also of other solid-earth geophysical problems, such as oceanic earthquakes, subduction

  2. Using open sidewalls for modelling self-consistent lithosphere subduction dynamics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. V. Chertova

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Subduction modelling in regional model domains, in 2-D or 3-D, is commonly performed using closed (impermeable vertical boundaries. Here we investigate the merits of using open boundaries for 2-D modelling of lithosphere subduction. Our experiments are focused on using open and closed (free slip sidewalls while comparing results for two model aspect ratios of 3:1 and 6:1. Slab buoyancy driven subduction with open boundaries and free plates immediately develops into strong rollback with high trench retreat velocities and predominantly laminar asthenospheric flow. In contrast, free-slip sidewalls prove highly restrictive on subduction rollback evolution, unless the lithosphere plates are allowed to move away from the sidewalls. This initiates return flows pushing both plates toward the subduction zone speeding up subduction. Increasing the aspect ratio to 6:1 does not change the overall flow pattern when using open sidewalls but only the flow magnitude. In contrast, for free-slip boundaries, the slab evolution does change with respect to the 3:1 aspect ratio model and slab evolution does not resemble the evolution obtained with open boundaries using 6:1 aspect ratio. For models with open side boundaries, we could develop a flow-speed scaling based on energy dissipation arguments to convert between flow fields of different model aspect ratios. We have also investigated incorporating the effect of far-field generated lithosphere stress in our open boundary models. By applying realistic normal stress conditions to the strong part of the overriding plate at the sidewalls, we can transfer intraplate stress to influence subduction dynamics varying from slab roll-back, stationary subduction, to advancing subduction. The relative independence of the flow field on model aspect ratio allows for a smaller modelling domain. Open boundaries allow for subduction to evolve freely and avoid the adverse effects (e.g. forced return flows of free-slip boundaries. We

  3. Petrology of Serpentinites and Rodingites in the Oceanic Lithosphere

    OpenAIRE

    Klein, Frieder

    2009-01-01

    Serpentinization, steatitization, and rodingitization are consequences of seawater reaction with lithospheric mantle. These processes take place coevally within the oceanic lithosphere and are related to circulation pathways, lithologic makeup of rocks along the flow path, fluid flux, and temperature. While the boundary conditions are set by the history of magmatic and tectonic accretion of the lithosphere, fluid-rock equilibria determine what reactions take place and where in the system. Pet...

  4. Tomographic imaging of subducted lithosphere below northwest Pacific island arcs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Der Hilst, R.; Engdahl, R.; Spakman, W.; Nolet, G.

    1991-01-01

    The seismic tomography problem does not have a unique solution, and published tomographic images have been equivocal with regard to the deep structure of subducting slabs. An improved tomographic method, using a more realistic background Earth model and surf ace-reflected as well as direct seismic phases, shows that slabs beneath the Japan and Izu Bonin island arcs are deflected at the boundary between upper and lower mantle, whereas those beneath the northern Kuril and Mariana arcs sink into the lower mantle.

  5. Complex Morphology of Subducted Lithosphere in the Mantle below the Molucca Collision Zone from Non-linear Seismic Tomography

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sri Widiyantoro

    2003-05-01

    Full Text Available Results of seismic studies presented in previous publications depict two opposing subducted oceanic lithospheric slabs under the Molucca region. This unique structure is related to the arc-arc collision between the Halmahera and Sangihe arcs. Recently, we have revisited the complex subduction zone structure by employing a non-linear tomographic imaging technique in which 3-D ray tracing has been implemented. We have used P- as well as S-wave arrival times from carefully reprocessed global data set. The results provide some improvements in the positioning of wave-speed anomalies. Consistent with earlier results, the new P-wave model depicts the two opposing subducted slabs of the Molucca Sea plate. The intriguing new observation is that the westward dipping slab appears to penetrate into the lower mantle by taking the form of folded slab. We envisage that the folding behavior may have been caused by the shift of the whole subduction system in the Molucca region toward the Eurasian continent due to the westward thrust of the Pacific plate combined with the large left-lateral movement of the Sorong fault. The inversion of travel-time residuals of direct S phases strongly confirms the new observation.

  6. Ancient Continental Lithosphere Dislocated Beneath Ocean Basins Along the Mid-Lithosphere Discontinuity: A Hypothesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Zhensheng; Kusky, Timothy M.; Capitanio, Fabio A.

    2017-09-01

    The documented occurrence of ancient continental cratonic roots beneath several oceanic basins remains poorly explained by the plate tectonic paradigm. These roots are found beneath some ocean-continent boundaries, on the trailing sides of some continents, extending for hundreds of kilometers or farther into oceanic basins. We postulate that these cratonic roots were left behind during plate motion, by differential shearing along the seismically imaged mid-lithosphere discontinuity (MLD), and then emplaced beneath the ocean-continent boundary. Here we use numerical models of cratons with realistic crustal rheologies drifting at observed plate velocities to support the idea that the mid-lithosphere weak layer fostered the decoupling and offset of the African continent's buoyant cratonic root, which was left behind during Meso-Cenozoic continental drift and emplaced beneath the Atlantic Ocean. We show that in some cratonic areas, the MLD plays a similar role as the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary for accommodating lateral plate tectonic displacements.

  7. Evidence for multiphase folding of the central Indian Ocean lithosphere

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Krishna, K.S.; Bull, J.M.; Scrutton, R.A.

    Long-wavelength (100-300 km) folding in the central Indian Ocean associated with the diffuse plate boundary separating the Indian, Australian, and Capricorn plates is Earth's most convincing example of organized large-scale lithospheric deformation...

  8. Trace element behavior during serpentinization/de-serpentinization of an eclogitized oceanic lithosphere: A LA-ICPMS study of the Lanzo ultramafic massif (Western Alps)

    OpenAIRE

    DEBRET, Baptiste; ANDREANI, Muriel; GODARD, Marguerite; NICOLLET, Christian; SCHWARTZ, Stéphane; LAFAY, Romain

    2013-01-01

    Serpentinites are one of the major components of the oceanic lithosphere and are stable in the slab and the mantle wedge up to 100-150 km depth in subduction zones. During oceanic mantle hydration and alteration, they trap trace and fluid mobile (FME: B, Li, As, Sb, Rb, Ba, Cs, Sr, U and Pb) elements that participate to elemental transfer occurring between the dehydrating slab and the mantle wedge in subduction context. The Lanzo massif is an eclogitized oceanic lithosphere that preserved its...

  9. The effects of subduction termination on the continental lithosphere: Linking volcanism, deformation, surface uplift, and slab tearing in central Anatolia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delph, Jonathan R.; Abgarmi, Bijan; Ward, Kevin M.; Beck, Susan L.; Arda Ozacar, A.; Zandt, George; Sandvol, Eric; Turkelli, Niyazi; Kalafat, Dogan

    2017-04-01

    The lithospheric evolution of Anatolia is largely defined by processes associated with the terminal stages of subduction along its southern margin. Central Anatolia represents the transition from the subduction of oceanic lithosphere at the Aegean trench in the west to the Arabian - Eurasian continental collision in the east. In the overriding plate, this complicated transition is contemporaneous with uplift along the southern margin of central Anatolia (2 km in 6 Myr), voluminous felsic-intermediate ignimbrite eruptions (>1000 km3), extension, and tectonic deformation reflected by abundant low-magnitude seismic activity. The addition of 72 seismic stations as part of the Continental Dynamics - Central Anatolian Tectonics project, along with development of a new approach to the joint inversion of receiver functions and dispersion data, enables us obtain a high-resolution 3D shear wave velocity model of central Anatolia down to 150 km. This new velocity model has important implications for the complex interactions between the downgoing, segmenting African lithosphere and the overriding Anatolian Plate. These results reveal that the lithosphere of central Anatolia and the northern Arabian Plate is thin (4.5 km/s), indicating the presence of the Cyprean slab beneath central Anatolia. Thus, uplift of the Central Taurus Mountains may be due to slab rebound after the detachment of the oceanic portion of the Cyprean slab beneath Anatolia rather than the presence of shallow asthenospheric material. These fast velocities extend to the northern margin of the Central Taurus Mountains, giving way to a NE-SW trend of very slow upper mantle shear wave velocities (interpreted to be shallow, warm asthenosphere in which melt is present. The combination of a shallow asthenosphere and lithospheric-scale weaknesses associated with relict tectonic structures formed during the assembly of Anatolia are responsible for the spatial distribution of volcanism in the Central Anatolian

  10. Kinematics of Late Cretaceous subduction initiation in the Neo-Tethys Ocean reconstructed from ophiolites of Turkey, Cyprus, and Syria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maffione, Marco; van Hinsbergen, Douwe J. J.; de Gelder, Giovanni I. N. O.; van der Goes, Freek C.; Morris, Antony

    2017-05-01

    Formation of new subduction zones represents one of the cornerstones of plate tectonics, yet both the kinematics and geodynamics governing this process remain enigmatic. A major subduction initiation event occurred in the Late Cretaceous, within the Neo-Tethys Ocean between Gondwana and Eurasia. Suprasubduction zone ophiolites (i.e., emerged fragments of ancient oceanic lithosphere formed at suprasubduction spreading centers) were generated during this subduction event and are today distributed in the eastern Mediterranean region along three E-W trending ophiolitic belts. Several models have been proposed to explain the formation of these ophiolites and the evolution of the associated intra-Neo-Tethyan subduction zone. Here we present new paleospreading directions from six Upper Cretaceous ophiolites of Turkey, Cyprus, and Syria, calculated by using new and published paleomagnetic data from sheeted dyke complexes. Our results show that NNE-SSW subduction zones were formed within the Neo-Tethys during the Late Cretaceous, which we propose were part of a major step-shaped subduction system composed of NNE-SSW and WNW-ESE segments. We infer that this subduction system developed within old (Triassic?) lithosphere, along fracture zones and perpendicular weakness zones, since the Neo-Tethyan spreading ridge formed during Gondwana fragmentation would have already been subducted at the Pontides subduction zone by the Late Cretaceous. Our new results provide an alternative kinematic model of Cretaceous Neo-Tethyan subduction initiation and call for future research on the mechanisms of subduction inception within old (and cold) lithosphere and the formation of metamorphic soles below suprasubduction zone ophiolites in the absence of nearby spreading ridges.

  11. Lithospheric Expressions of the Precambrian Shield, Mesozoic Rifting, and Cenozoic Subduction and Mountain Building in Venezuela

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levander, A.; Masy, J.; Niu, F.

    2013-05-01

    The Caribbean (CAR)-South American (SA) plate boundary in Venezuela is a broad zone of faulting and diffuse deformation. GPS measurements show the CAR moving approximately 2 cm/yr relative to SA, parallel to the strike slip fault system in the east, with more oblique convergence in the west (Weber et al., 2001) causing the southern edge of the Caribbean to subduct beneath northwestern South America. The west is further complicated by the motion of the triangular Maracaibo block, which is escaping northeastward relative to SA along the Bocono and Santa Marta Faults. In central and eastern Venezuela, plate motion is accommodated by transpression and transtension along the right lateral San Sebastian- El Pilar strike-slip fault system. The strike-slip system marks the northern edge of coastal thrust belts and their associated foreland basins. The Archean-Proterozoic Guayana Shield, part of the Amazonian Craton, underlies southeastern and south-central Venezuela. We used the 87 station Venezuela-U.S. BOLIVAR array (Levander et al., 2006) to investigate lithospheric structure in northern South America. We combined finite-frequency Rayleigh wave tomography with Ps and Sp receiver functions to determine lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB) depth. We measured Rayleigh phase velocities from 45 earthquakes in the period band 20-100s. The phase velocities were inverted for 1D shear velocity structure on a 0.5 by 0.5 degree grid. Crustal thickness for the starting model was determined from active seismic experiments and receiver function analysis. The resulting 3D shear velocity model was then used to determine the depth of the LAB, and to CCP stack Ps and Sp receiver functions from ~45 earthquakes. The receiver functions were calculated in several frequency bands using iterative deconvolution and inverse filtering. Lithospheric thickness varies by more a factor of 2.5 across Venezuela. We can divide the lithosphere into several distinct provinces, with LAB depth

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    Subduction initiation is a critical link in the plate tectonic cycle. Intraoceanic subduction zones can form along transform faults and fracture zones, but how subduction nucleates parallel to mid-ocean ridges, as in e.g., the Neotethys Ocean during the Jurassic, remains a matter of debate. In

  13. Flexural modeling of the elastic lithosphere at an ocean trench: A parameter sensitivity analysis using analytical solutions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Contreras-Reyes, Eduardo; Garay, Jeremías

    2018-01-01

    The outer rise is a topographic bulge seaward of the trench at a subduction zone that is caused by bending and flexure of the oceanic lithosphere as subduction commences. The classic model of the flexure of oceanic lithosphere w (x) is a hydrostatic restoring force acting upon an elastic plate at the trench axis. The governing parameters are elastic thickness Te, shear force V0, and bending moment M0. V0 and M0 are unknown variables that are typically replaced by other quantities such as the height of the fore-bulge, wb, and the half-width of the fore-bulge, (xb - xo). However, this method is difficult to implement with the presence of excessive topographic noise around the bulge of the outer rise. Here, we present an alternative method to the classic model, in which lithospheric flexure w (x) is a function of the flexure at the trench axis w0, the initial dip angle of subduction β0, and the elastic thickness Te. In this investigation, we apply a sensitivity analysis to both methods in order to determine the impact of the differing parameters on the solution, w (x). The parametric sensitivity analysis suggests that stable solutions for the alternative approach requires relatively low β0 values (rise bulge. The alternative method is a more suitable approach, assuming that accurate geometric information at the trench axis (i.e., w0 and β0) is available.

  14. Driving Forces of Plate Tectonics and Evolution of the Oceanic Lithosphere and Asthenosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forsyth, D. W.

    2017-12-01

    As plate tectonics became established as an excellent kinematic description of the relative motions of different blocks of the Earth's lithosphere, many investigators also began exploring the forces involved in driving the plate motions. Because the plates move at nearly constant velocities over long periods of time and inertial terms are unimportant, driving forces must always be balanced by resisting forces in a way that regulates the velocities. Forsyth and Uyeda (1975) incorporated the balancing of torques on the individual plates to help constrain the relative importance of the driving and resisting forces, as parameterized in a way based on prior model investigations of individual parts of the convecting system. We found that the primary driving force was sinking of subducting lithosphere at trenches, balanced largely by viscous resisting forces in the sub-asthenospheric mantle; that viscous drag beneath the oceanic plates was negligible; and that mid-ocean ridges provided a relatively small push. One of the early questions was whether there was buoyant upwelling on a large scale beneath mid-ocean ridges as part of a whole mantle convection system with subduction of the plates representing the downwelling limb. If so, then it would be likely that the plates were just riding on top of large convection cells. Seismic tomography has demonstrated that, on average, there are no deep roots beneath mid-ocean ridges, so that active, buoyant upwelling from the deep mantle does not exist beneath spreading centers. However, more recent tomographic studies have found asymmetry of the shear velocity structure beneath ridges in some areas, pointing to a smaller scale of active convection in the shallow mantle perhaps induced by melt retention buoyancy or the local effects of ridge/hotspot interaction.

  15. Southward Ejection of Subcontinental Lithosphere and large-scale Asthenospheric Enrichment beneath central Chile resulting from Flat Subduction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacques, G.; Hoernle, K.; Schaefer, B. F.; Hauff, F.; Gill, J.; Holm, P. M.; Bindeman, I. N.; Folguera, A.; Lara, L.; Ramos, V. A.

    2015-12-01

    Flat subduction is a common process in subduction zones, causing crustal shortening and thickening and possibly subduction erosion. These processes can lead to the contamination of asthenospheric melts either by lithospheric assimilation (e.g. MASH) or by subduction erosion of lithosphere into the asthenospheric source. We present new major and trace element and Sr-Nd-Pb-Hf-O-Os isotope data for a transect of Quaternary volcanic rocks across the Northern Southern Volcanic Front (NSVZ) of Chile at ~33.5°S, just south of the area of flat subduction, extending from the volcanic front (VF) to the rear arc (RA). The newly discovered calc-alkaline to alkaline RA rocks are more mafic (MgO~4-9wt.%) than the VF rocks (MgO~2.0-4.5wt.%). Both groups have overlapping Sr-Nd-Hf isotopic compositions that are more enriched than lavas from further south in the SVZ with two RA trachybasalts displaying extreme 87Sr/86Sr (0.710), eNd (-6) and eHf (-9). The RA samples, however, have less radiogenic Pb isotopic compositions with the two extreme RA trachybasalt samples having the least radiogenic Pb. The 207Pb/204Pb vs. Nd/Pb, Ce/Pb and Nb/U form good inverse linear correlations extending from subducted sediments to a mantle-like component. Mesozoic/Paleozoic crust and Grenvillian Argentinian lower crust do not fall on or along an extension of these arrays. The ol, plag and groundmassd18O (normalized to melt) of samples covering the full range in Sr-Nd-Pb-Hf isotopic composition lie within the mantle range (5.5-5.9). High Os abundances (~330ppt) in radiogenic Os (187Os/188Os=0.18) samples are not consistent with derivation from a mantle plume or continental crust. eNd and eHf increase to the south along the VF, e.g. eHf ranges from -9 to +10, forming an excellent linear correlation (r2=0.99), indicating that the enriched component is present in the source for >1000km to at least ~43°S. We propose that flattening of the Pampean slab 1) triggered subduction erosion of enriched

  16. Numerical modelling of lithospheric flexure in front of subduction zones in Japan and its role to initiate melt extraction from the LVZ.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bessat, A.; Pilet, S.; Duretz, T.; Schmalholz, S. M.

    2017-12-01

    Petit-spot volcanoes were found fifteen years ago by Japanese researchers at the top of the subducting plate in Japan (Hirano 2006). This discovery is of great significance as it highlights the importance of tectonic processes for the initiation of intraplate volcanism. The location of these small lava flows is unusual and seems to be related to the plate flexure, which may facilitate the extraction of low degree melts from the base of the lithosphere, a hypothesis previously suggested to explain changes in electric and seismic properties at 70-90 km depth, i.e. within the low velocity zone (LVS) (Sifré 2014). A critical question is related to the process associated with the extraction of this low degree melts from the LVZ. First models suggested that extension associated to plate bending allows large cracks to propagate across the lithosphere and could promote the extraction of low degree melts at the base of the lithosphere (Hirano 2006 & Yamamoto 2014). However, the study of petit-spot mantle xenoliths from Japan (Pilet 2016) has demonstrated that low degree melts are not directly extracted to the surface but percolate, interact and metasomatize the oceanic lithosphere. In order to understand the melt extraction process in the region of plate bending, we performed 2D thermo-mechanical simulations of Japanese-type subduction. The numerical model considers viscoelastoplastic deformation. This allows the quantification of state of the stress, strain rates, and viscosities which will control the percolation of melt initially stocked at the base of the lithosphere. Initial results show that plate flexure changes the distribution of the deformation mechanism in the flexure zone, between 40 km to 80 km depth. A change of the dominant deformation mechanism from diffusion creep to dislocation creep and from there to Peierls creep was observed about 200 to 300 km from the trench. These changes are linked to the augmentation of the stresses in the flexure zone. At the

  17. Rayleigh and S wave tomography constraints on subduction termination and lithospheric foundering in central California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Chengxin; Schmandt, Brandon; Hansen, Steven M.; Dougherty, Sara L.; Clayton, Robert W.; Farrell, Jamie; Lin, Fan-Chi

    2018-01-01

    The crust and upper mantle structure of central California have been modified by subduction termination, growth of the San Andreas plate boundary fault system, and small-scale upper mantle convection since the early Miocene. Here we investigate the contributions of these processes to the creation of the Isabella Anomaly, which is a high seismic velocity volume in the upper mantle. There are two types of hypotheses for its origin. One is that it is the foundered mafic lower crust and mantle lithosphere of the southern Sierra Nevada batholith. The alternative suggests that it is a fossil slab connected to the Monterey microplate. A dense broadband seismic transect was deployed from the coast to the western Sierra Nevada to fill in the least sampled areas above the Isabella Anomaly, and regional-scale Rayleigh and S wave tomography are used to evaluate the two hypotheses. New shear velocity (Vs) tomography images a high-velocity anomaly beneath coastal California that is sub-horizontal at depths of ∼40–80 km. East of the San Andreas Fault a continuous extension of the high-velocity anomaly dips east and is located beneath the Sierra Nevada at ∼150–200 km depth. The western position of the Isabella Anomaly in the uppermost mantle is inconsistent with earlier interpretations that the Isabella Anomaly is connected to actively foundering foothills lower crust. Based on the new Vs images, we interpret that the Isabella Anomaly is not the dense destabilized root of the Sierra Nevada, but rather a remnant of Miocene subduction termination that is translating north beneath the central San Andreas Fault. Our results support the occurrence of localized lithospheric foundering beneath the high elevation eastern Sierra Nevada, where we find a lower crustal low Vs layer consistent with a small amount of partial melt. The high elevations relative to crust thickness and lower crustal low Vs zone are consistent with geological inferences that lithospheric foundering drove

  18. Rayleigh and S wave tomography constraints on subduction termination and lithospheric foundering in central California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Chengxin; Schmandt, Brandon; Hansen, Steven M.; Dougherty, Sara L.; Clayton, Robert W.; Farrell, Jamie; Lin, Fan-Chi

    2018-04-01

    The crust and upper mantle structure of central California have been modified by subduction termination, growth of the San Andreas plate boundary fault system, and small-scale upper mantle convection since the early Miocene. Here we investigate the contributions of these processes to the creation of the Isabella Anomaly, which is a high seismic velocity volume in the upper mantle. There are two types of hypotheses for its origin. One is that it is the foundered mafic lower crust and mantle lithosphere of the southern Sierra Nevada batholith. The alternative suggests that it is a fossil slab connected to the Monterey microplate. A dense broadband seismic transect was deployed from the coast to the western Sierra Nevada to fill in the least sampled areas above the Isabella Anomaly, and regional-scale Rayleigh and S wave tomography are used to evaluate the two hypotheses. New shear velocity (Vs) tomography images a high-velocity anomaly beneath coastal California that is sub-horizontal at depths of ∼40-80 km. East of the San Andreas Fault a continuous extension of the high-velocity anomaly dips east and is located beneath the Sierra Nevada at ∼150-200 km depth. The western position of the Isabella Anomaly in the uppermost mantle is inconsistent with earlier interpretations that the Isabella Anomaly is connected to actively foundering foothills lower crust. Based on the new Vs images, we interpret that the Isabella Anomaly is not the dense destabilized root of the Sierra Nevada, but rather a remnant of Miocene subduction termination that is translating north beneath the central San Andreas Fault. Our results support the occurrence of localized lithospheric foundering beneath the high elevation eastern Sierra Nevada, where we find a lower crustal low Vs layer consistent with a small amount of partial melt. The high elevations relative to crust thickness and lower crustal low Vs zone are consistent with geological inferences that lithospheric foundering drove uplift

  19. Out-of-plane reflections - are they evidence for deep subducted lithosphere?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schumacher, Lina; Thomas, Christine

    2015-04-01

    Subduction zones form dominant tectonic features on the Earth and have complex three-dimensional structures. Tomographic inversions for P- and S-wave seismic velocities in the Earth's mantle give impressive images of slabs descending into the deep Earth. However, direct observations of deep slabs are scarce but necessary to make statements concerning physical parameters, structural differences within the slab and its behavior with depth. The main objective of this study is to investigate the geometry, physical parameters and structural differences of subducted lithosphere by investigating seismic P-wave arrivals that reflect off the base of the slab using seismic array techniques. The great circle paths of the source-receiver combinations used do not intersect the slab and serve as reference. We focus on the North pacific region by using earthquakes from Japan, the Philippines and the Hindukush recorded at North American networks (e.g. USArray, Alaska and Canada). The data cover a period from 2000-2012 with a minimum magnitude of 5.6 Mw and depths below 100 km. We are looking for reflections from the slab region that would arrive at the stations with deviating backazimuths. Information on slowness, backazimuth and travel time of the observed out-of-plane arrivals is used to backtrace the wave to its scattering location and to map seismic heterogeneities associated with subduction zones. The reflection points give an idea for the 3D structures within the mantle. Assuming only single scattering in the backtracing algorithm, most out-of-plane signals have to travel as P*P and only a few as S*P phases, due to their timing. Taking into account the radiation pattern of each event in direction of the great circle path and towards the calculated reflection point, it is possible to compare the polarities of the out-of-plane signals with P and/or PP. Furthermore, we analyze the out-of-plane waveforms in the beam trace of the observed slowness and backazimuth by cross

  20. Melt Origin Across a Rifted Continental Margin: A Case for Subduction-related Metasomatic Agents in the Lithospheric Source of Alkaline Basalt, Northwest Ross Sea, Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panter, K. S.; Castillo, P.; Krans, S. R.; Deering, C. D.; McIntosh, W. C.; Valley, J. W.; Kitajima, K.; Kyle, P. R.; Hart, S. R.; Blusztajn, J.

    2017-12-01

    Alkaline magmatism within the West Antarctic rift system in the NW Ross Sea (NWRS) includes a chain of shield volcanoes extending 260 km along the coast, numerous seamounts located on the continental shelf and hundreds more within the oceanic Adare Basin. Dating and geochemistry confirm that the seamounts are Pliocene‒Pleistocene in age and petrogenetically akin to the mostly Miocene volcanism on the continent as well as to a much broader region of alkaline volcanism that altogether encompasses areas of West Antarctica, Zealandia and Australia. All of these regions were contiguous prior to Gondwana breakup at 100 Ma, suggesting that the magmatism is interrelated. Mafic alkaline magmas (> 6 wt.% MgO) erupted across the transition from continent to ocean in the NWRS show a remarkable systematic increase in Si-undersaturation, P2O5, Sr, Zr, Nb and light rare earth element (LREE) concentrations, LREE/HREE and Nb/Y ratios. Radiogenic isotopes also vary with Nd and Pb ratios increasing and Sr ratios decreasing ocean-ward. The variations are not explained by crustal contamination or by changes in degree of mantle partial melting but are likely a function of the thickness and age of mantle lithosphere. The isotopic signature of the most Si-undersaturated and incompatible element enriched basalts best represent the composition of the sub-lithospheric source with low 87Sr/86Sr (≤ 0.7030) and δ18Oolivine (≤ 5.0 ‰), high 143Nd/144Nd ( 0.5130) and 206Pb/204Pb (≥ 20) ratios. The isotopic `endmember' is derived from recycled material and was transferred to the lithospheric mantle by small degree melts to form amphibole-rich metasomes. Later melting of the metasomes produced silica-undersaturated liquids that reacted with the surrounding peridotite. This reaction occurred to a greater extent as the melt traversed through thicker and older lithosphere continent-ward. Ancient or more recent ( 550‒100 Ma) subduction along the margin of Gondwana supplied the recycled

  1. Mid-ocean ridge serpentinite in the Puerto Rico Trench: Accretion, alteration, and subduction of Cretaceous seafloor in the Atlantic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klein, F.; Marschall, H.; Bowring, S. A.; Horning, G.

    2016-12-01

    Serpentinite is believed to be one of the main carriers of water and fluid mobile elements into subduction zones, but direct evidence for serpentinite subduction has been elusive. The Antilles island arc is one of only two subduction zones worldwide that recycles slow-spreading oceanic lithosphere where descending serpentinite is both exposed by faulting and directly accessible on the seafloor. Here we examined serpentinized peridotites dredged from the North Wall of the Puerto Rico Trench (NWPRT) to assess their formation and alteration history and discuss geological ramifications resulting from their emplacement and subduction. Lithospheric accretion and serpentinization occurred, as indicated by U-Pb geochronology of hydrothermally altered zircon, at the Cretaceous Mid-Atlantic Ridge (CMAR). In addition to lizardite-rich serpentinites with pseudomorphic textures after olivine and pyroxene typical for static serpentinization at slow spreading mid-ocean ridges, recovered samples include non-pseudomorphic antigorite-rich serpentinites that are otherwise typically associated with peridotite at convergent plate boundaries. Antigorite-serpentinites have considerably lower Fe(III)/Fetot and lower magnetic susceptibilities than lizardite-serpentinites with comparable Fetot contents. Rare earth element (REE) contents of lizardite-serpentinites decrease linearly with increasing Fe(III)/Fetot of whole rock samples, suggesting that oxidation during seafloor weathering of serpentinite releases REEs to seawater. Serpentinized peridotites recorded multifaceted igneous and high- to low-temperature hydrothermal processes that involved extensive chemical, physical, and mineralogical modifications of their peridotite precursors with strong implications for our understanding of the accretion, alteration, and subduction of slow-spreading oceanic lithosphere.

  2. Upper mantle beneath foothills of the western Himalaya: subducted lithospheric slab or a keel of the Indian shield?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vinnik, L.; Singh, A.; Kiselev, S.; Kumar, M. Ravi

    2007-12-01

    The fate of the mantle lithosphere of the Indian Plate in the India-Eurasia collision zone is not well understood. Tomographic studies reveal high P velocity in the uppermost mantle to the south of the western Himalaya, and these high velocities are sometimes interpreted as an image of subducting Indian lithosphere. We suggest that these high velocities are unrelated to the ongoing subduction but correspond to a near-horizontal mantle keel of the Indian shield. In the south of the Indian shield upper-mantle velocities are anomalously low, and relatively high velocities may signify a recovery of the normal shield structure in the north. Our analysis is based on the recordings of seismograph station NIL in the foothills of the western Himalaya. The T component of the P receiver functions is weak relative to the Q component, which is indicative of a subhorizontally layered structure. Joint inversion of the P and S receiver functions favours high uppermost mantle velocities, typical of the lithosphere of Archean cratons. The arrival of the Ps converted phase from 410 km discontinuity at NIL is 2.2 s earlier than in IASP91 global model. This can be an effect of remnants of Tethys subduction in the mantle transition zone and of high velocities in the keel of the Indian shield. Joint inversion of SKS particle motions and P receiver functions reveals a change in the fast direction of seismic azimuthal anisotropy from 60° at 80-160 km depths to 150° at 160-220 km. The fast direction in the lower layer is parallel to the trend of the Himalaya. The change of deformation regimes at a depth of 160 km suggests that this is the base of the lithosphere of the Indian shield. A similar boundary was found with similar techniques in central Europe and the Tien Shan region, but the base of the lithosphere in these regions is relatively shallow, in agreement with the higher upper-mantle temperatures. The ongoing continental collision is expressed in crustal structure: the crust

  3. Influence of lateral slab edge distance on plate velocity, trench velocity, and subduction partitioning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schellart, W. P.; Stegman, D. R.; Farrington, R. J.; Moresi, L.

    2011-01-01

    Subduction of oceanic lithosphere occurs through both trenchward subducting plate motion and trench retreat. We investigate how subducting plate velocity, trench velocity and the partitioning of these two velocity components vary for individual subduction zone segments as a function of proximity to

  4. Magnitude of long-term non-lithostatic pressure variations in lithospheric processes: insight from thermo-mechanical subduction/collision models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gerya, Taras

    2014-05-01

    On the one hand, the principle of lithostatic pressure is habitually used in metamorphic geology to calculate paleo-depths of metamorphism from mineralogical pressure estimates given by geobarometry. On the other hand, it is obvious that this lithostatic (hydrostatic) pressure principle should only be valid for an ideal case of negligible deviatoric stresses during the long-term development of the entire tectono-metamorphic system - the situation, which newer comes to existence in natural lithospheric processes. The question is therefore not "Do non-lithostatic pressure variations exist?" but " What is the magnitude of long-term non-lithostatic pressure variations in various lithospheric processes, which can be recorded by mineral equilibria of respective metamorphic rocks?". The later question is, in particular, relevant for various types of high-pressure (HP) and ultrahigh-pressure (UHP) rocks, which are often produced in convergent plate boundary settings (e.g., Hacker and Gerya, 2013). This question, can, in particular, be answered with the use of thermo-mechanical models of subduction/collision processes employing realistic P-T-stress-dependent visco-elasto-brittle/plastic rheology of rocks. These models suggest that magnitudes of pressure deviations from lithostatic values can range >50% underpressure to >100% overpressure, mainly in the regions of bending of rheologically strong mantle lithosphere (Burg and Gerya, 2005; Li et al., 2010). In particular, strong undepresures along normal faults forming within outer rise regions of subducting plates can be responsible for downward water suction and deep hydration of oceanic slabs (Faccenda et al., 2009). Weaker HP and UHP rocks of subduction/collision channels are typically subjected to lesser non-lithostatic pressure variations with characteristic magnitudes ranging within 10-20% from the lithostatic values (Burg and Gerya, 2005; Li et al., 2010). The strength of subducted crustal rocks and the degree of

  5. Comparison of Oceanic and Continental Lithosphere, Asthenosphere, and the LAB Through Shear Velocity Inversion of Rayleigh Wave Data from the ALBACORE Amphibious Array in Southern California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amodeo, K.; Rathnayaka, S.; Weeraratne, D. S.; Kohler, M. D.

    2016-12-01

    Continental and oceanic lithosphere, which form in different tectonic environments, are studied in a single amphibious seismic array across the Southern California continental margin. This provides a unique opportunity to directly compare oceanic and continental lithosphere, asthenosphere, and the LAB (Lithosphere-Asthenosphere Boundary) in a single data set. The complex history of the region, including spreading center subduction, block rotation, and Borderland extension, allows us to study limits in the rigidity and strength of the lithosphere. We study Rayleigh wave phase velocities obtained from the ALBACORE (Asthenospheric and Lithospheric Broadband Architecture from the California Offshore Region Experiment) offshore seismic array project and invert for shear wave velocity structure as a function of depth. We divide the study area into several regions: continent, inner Borderland, outer Borderland, and oceanic seafloor categorized by age. A unique starting Vs model is used for each case including layer thicknesses, densities, and P and S velocities which predicts Rayleigh phase velocities and are compared to observed phase velocities in each region. We solve for shear wave velocities with the best fit between observed and predicted phase velocity data in a least square sense. Preliminary results indicate that lithospheric velocities in the oceanic mantle are higher than the continental region by at least 2%. The LAB is observed at 50 ± 20 km beneath 15-35 Ma oceanic seafloor. Asthenospheric low velocities reach a minimum of 4.2 km/s in all regions, but have a steeper positive velocity gradient at the base of the oceanic asthenosphere compared to the continent. Seismic tomography images in two and three dimensions will be presented from each study region.

  6. Metamorphism and Shear Localization in the Oceanic and Continental Lithosphere: A Local or Lithospheric-Scale Effect?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montesi, L.

    2017-12-01

    Ductile rheologies are characterized by strain rate hardening, which favors deformation zones that are as wide as possible, thus minimizing strain rate and stress. By contrast, plate tectonics and the observation of ductile shear zones in the exposed middle to lower crust show that deformation is often localized, that is, strain (and likely strain rate) is locally very high. This behavior is most easily explained if the material in the shear zone is intrinsically weaker than the reference material forming the wall rocks. Many origins for that weakness have been proposed. They include higher temperature (shear heating), reduced grain size, and fabric. The latter two were shown to be the most effective in the middle crust and upper mantle (given observational limits restricting heating to 50K or less) but they were not very important in the lower crust. They are not sufficient to explain the generation of narrow plate boundaries in the oceans. We evaluate here the importance of metamorphism, especially related to hydration, in weakening the lithosphere. Serpentine is a major player in the dynamics of the oceanic lithosphere. Although its ductile behavior is poorly constrained, serpentine is likely to behave in a brittle or quasi-plastic manner with a reduced coefficient of friction, replacing stronger peridotite. Serpentinization sufficiently weakens the oceanic lithosphere to explain the generation of diffuse plate boundaries and, combined with grain size reduction, the development of narrow plate boundaries. Lower crust outcrops, especially in the Bergen Arc (Norway), display eclogite shear zones hosted in metastable granulites. The introduction of water triggered locally a metamorphic reaction that reduces rock strength and resulted in a ductile shear zone. The presence of these shear zones has been used to explain the weakness of the lower crust perceived from geodesy and seismic activity. We evaluate here how much strain rate may increase as a result of

  7. Determination of intrinsic attenuation in the oceanic lithosphere-asthenosphere system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takeuchi, Nozomu; Kawakatsu, Hitoshi; Shiobara, Hajime; Isse, Takehi; Sugioka, Hiroko; Ito, Aki; Utada, Hisashi

    2017-12-01

    We recorded P and S waves traveling through the oceanic lithosphere-asthenosphere system (LAS) using broadband ocean-bottom seismometers in the northwest Pacific, and we quantitatively separated the intrinsic (anelastic) and extrinsic (scattering) attenuation effects on seismic wave propagation to directly infer the thermomechanical properties of the oceanic LAS. The strong intrinsic attenuation in the asthenosphere obtained at higher frequency (~3 hertz) is comparable to that constrained at lower frequency (~100 seconds) by surface waves and suggests frequency-independent anelasticity, whereas the intrinsic attenuation in the lithosphere is frequency dependent. This difference in frequency dependence indicates that the strong and broad peak dissipation recently observed in the laboratory exists only in the asthenosphere and provides new insight into what distinguishes the asthenosphere from the lithosphere.

  8. The electrical conductivity of the upper mantle and lithosphere from the magnetic signal due to ocean tidal flow

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schnepf, Neesha Regmi; Kuvshinov, Alexey; Grayver, Alexander

    galvanically with Earth’s lithosphere (i.e. by direct coupling of the source currents in the ocean with the underlying substrate), enabling conductivity estimations at shallower depths. Here we present the results of determining a 1-D conductivity-depth profile of oceanic lithosphere and upper mantle using...

  9. Intra-Panthalassa Ocean subduction zones revealed by fossil arcs and mantle structure

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meer, D.G. van der; Torsvik, T.H.; Spakman, W.; Hinsbergen, D.J.J. van; Amaru, M.L.

    2012-01-01

    The vast Panthalassa Ocean once surrounded the supercontinent Pangaea. Subduction has since consumed most of the oceanic plates that formed the ocean floor, so classic plate reconstructions based on magnetic anomalies can be used only to constrain the ocean’s history since the Cretaceous period, and

  10. Continental lithospheric subduction and intermediate-depth seismicity: Constraints from S-wave velocity structures in the Pamir and Hindu Kush

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Wei; Chen, Yun; Yuan, Xiaohui; Schurr, Bernd; Mechie, James; Oimahmadov, Ilhomjon; Fu, Bihong

    2018-01-01

    The Pamir has experienced more intense deformation and shortening than Tibet, although it has a similar history of terrane accretion. Subduction as a primary way to accommodate lithospheric shortening beneath the Pamir has induced the intermediate-depth seismicity, which is rare in Tibet. Here we construct a 3D S-wave velocity model of the lithosphere beneath the Pamir by surface wave tomography using data of the TIPAGE (Tien Shan-Pamir Geodynamic program) and other seismic networks in the area. We imaged a large-scale low velocity anomaly in the crust at 20-50 km depth in the Pamir overlain by a high velocity anomaly at a depth shallower than 15 km. The high velocity anomalies colocate with exposed gneiss domes, which may imply a similar history of crustal deformation, partial melting and exhumation in the hinterland, as has occurred in the Himalaya/Tibet system. At mantle depths, where the intermediate-depth earthquakes are located, a low velocity zone is clearly observed extending to about 180 km and 150 km depth in the Hindu Kush and eastern Pamir, respectively. Moreover, the geometry of the low-velocity anomaly suggests that lower crustal material has been pulled down into the mantle by the subducting Asian and Indian lithospheric mantle beneath the Pamir and Hindu Kush, respectively. Metamorphic processes in the subducting lower crust may cause the intermediate-depth seismicity down to 150-180 km depth beneath the Pamir and Hindu Kush. We inverted focal mechanisms in the seismic zone for the stress field. Differences in the stress field between the upper and lower parts of the Indian slab imply that subduction and detachment of the Indian lithosphere might cause intense seismicity associated with the thermal shear instability in the deep Hindu Kush.

  11. Electrical structure of the lithosphere across the Western Paraná suture zone: the role of a Neoproterozoic-Cambrian subduction in generating the Paraná Magmatic Province

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dragone, G. N.; Bologna, M.; Gimenez, M. E.; Alvarez, O.; Lince Klinger, F. G.; Correa-Otto, S.; Ussami, N.

    2017-12-01

    The Paraná Magmatic Province (PMP) together with the Etendeka Province (EP) in Africa is one of the Earth's largest igneous provinces originated prior to the Western Gondwanaland break-up and the inception of the South Atlantic Ocean in the Lower Cretaceous. Geochemical data of PMP-EP basalts collected since late 1980's indicate the origin of PMP-EP by melting of a heterogeneous and enriched subcontinental lithospheric mantle with fast rate of eruption (borders of the PMP, the Western Paraná suture zone (WPS in Fig. 1). We discuss the electrical properties of the lithosphere along three MT profiles across the WPS. MT-A profile (Padilha et al., 2015, JGR) extends from Rio Apa craton towards the center of PMP (high-TiO2 basalts). Profile MT-B extends from Tebicuary craton towards the center of PMP (low-TiO2) and profile MT-C extends from Rio de la Plata craton towards the southern PMP (low- and high-TiO2). All profiles show a resistive ( 104 ohm m) and thick (> 150 km) lithosphere in the cratonic areas whereas the electrical lithosphere is thinner (<100 km) with alternating high and low resistivities within PMP. Vertically elongated and high electrical conductivity anomalies ( 10 ohm m) centered at 40 km depth occur along the -30 mGal contour line in the three profiles, and are interpreted as the location of the suture and former subduction zone. We will discuss the correlation between geochemical and petrological characteristics of basalts and the electrical properties of the lithospheric mantle underneath.

  12. Global Models of Ridge-Push Force, Geoid, and Lithospheric Strength of Oceanic plates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahatsente, Rezene

    2017-12-01

    An understanding of the transmission of ridge-push related stresses in the interior of oceanic plates is important because ridge-push force is one of the principal forces driving plate motion. Here, I assess the transmission of ridge-push related stresses in oceanic plates by comparing the magnitude of the ridge-push force to the integrated strength of oceanic plates. The strength is determined based on plate cooling and rheological models. The strength analysis includes low-temperature plasticity (LTP) in the upper mantle and assumes a range of possible tectonic conditions and rheology in the plates. The ridge-push force has been derived from the thermal state of oceanic lithosphere, seafloor depth and crustal age data. The results of modeling show that the transmission of ridge-push related stresses in oceanic plates mainly depends on rheology and predominant tectonic conditions. If a lithosphere has dry rheology, the estimated strength is higher than the ridge-push force at all ages for compressional tectonics and at old ages (>75 Ma) for extension. Therefore, under such conditions, oceanic plates may not respond to ridge-push force by intraplate deformation. Instead, the plates may transmit the ridge-push related stress in their interior. For a wet rheology, however, the strength of young lithosphere (stress may dissipate in the interior of oceanic plates and diffuses by intraplate deformation. The state of stress within a plate depends on the balance of far-field and intraplate forces.

  13. Global variations in gravity-derived oceanic crustal thickness: Implications on oceanic crustal accretion and hotspot-lithosphere interactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, J.; Zhu, J.

    2012-12-01

    We present a new global model of oceanic crustal thickness based on inversion of global oceanic gravity anomaly with constrains from seismic crustal thickness profiles. We first removed from the observed marine free-air gravity anomaly all gravitational effects that can be estimated and removed using independent constraints, including the effects of seafloor topography, marine sediment thickness, and the age-dependent thermal structure of the oceanic lithosphere. We then calculated models of gravity-derived crustal thickness through inversion of the residual mantle Bouguer anomaly using best-fitting gravity-modeling parameters obtained from comparison with seismically determined crustal thickness profiles. Modeling results show that about 5% of the global crustal volume (or 9% of the global oceanic surface area) is associated with model crustal thickness 8.6 km and is interpreted to have been affected by excess magmatism. The percentage of oceanic crustal volume that is associated with thick crustal thickness (>8.6 km) varies greatly among tectonic plates: Pacific (33%), Africa (50%), Antarctic (33%), Australia (30%), South America (34%), Nazca (23%), North America (47%), India (74%), Eurasia (68%), Cocos (20%), Philippine (26%), Scotia (41%), Caribbean (89%), Arabian (82%), and Juan de Fuca (21%). We also found that distribution of thickened oceanic crust (>8.6 km) seems to depend on spreading rate and lithospheric age: (1) On ocean basins younger than 5 Ma, regions of thickened crust are predominantly associated with slow and ultraslow spreading ridges. The relatively strong lithospheric plate at slow and ultraslow ridges might facilitate the loading of large magmatic emplacements on the plate. (2) In contrast, crustal thickness near fast and intermediately fast spreading ridges typically does not exceed 7-8 km. The relatively weak lithosphere at fast and intermediately fast ridges might make it harder for excess magmatism to accrete. We further speculate that

  14. Deep subduction of hot young oceanic slab required by the Syros eclogites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flemetakis, Stamatis; Moulas, Evangelos; Kostopoulos, Dimitrios; Chatzitheodoridis, Elias

    2014-05-01

    The Cycladic islands of Syros and Siphnos, Aegean Sea, Greece, represent subducted IAT and BABB remnants of the Neotethyan Pindos Ocean. Garnet porphyroblasts (Ø=1mm) in a glaucophane-zoisite eclogite from Kini locality on Syros are compositionally zoned and display a unique prograde heating path from a high-pressure greenschist-facies core with high XSps and low Mg# via a blueschist-facies mantle with moderate XSps and Mg# to an eclogite-facies rim with low XSps and high Mg#. The outermost 35 μm of the garnet rims show flat XSps with rapidly increasing outwards Mg#. Na-Act-Chl-Ph rimmed by Gln mark the greenschist-blueschist facies transition, whereas Pg rimmed by Omp and the incoming of Rt at the expense of Ttn signify the blueschist-eclogite facies transition. Raman barometry of quartz inclusions in the eclogitic garnet rims coupled with elastic modelling of the garnet host [1], and Zr-in-Rt and Grt-Cpx-Ph thermobarometry revealed near-UHP P-T conditions of the order of 2.6 GPa/660°C (maximum residual pressure was 0.8-0.9GPa). By contrast, the greenschist-blueschist transition lies at ~0.75 GPa/355°C. This pressure is in excellent agreement with the position of the albite = jadeite + quartz boundary calculated at 350°C using the observed omphacite composition corrected for jadeite activity (Koons & Thompson, 1985) [2]. As a result, Cpx inclusions in garnet core signify the early entrance of garnet in the subduction zone history of the slab. Furthermore, the early growth of garnet (in lower pressures) observed in eclogites from Syros lies in great agreement with published slab-geotherms that indicate hot subduction and show a precocious garnet growth (Baxter and Caddick, 2013) [3]. The complete absence of lawsonite and the great abundance of zoisite crystals, based on the stability fields of both minerals (Poli et al., 2009) [4], further constrain the P-T trajectory of the slab. Our new P-T estimates match published T distributions on the slab surface

  15. The link between great earthquakes and the subduction of oceanic fracture zones

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. D. Müller

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Giant subduction earthquakes are known to occur in areas not previously identified as prone to high seismic risk. This highlights the need to better identify subduction zone segments potentially dominated by relatively long (up to 1000 yr and more recurrence times of giant earthquakes. We construct a model for the geometry of subduction coupling zones and combine it with global geophysical data sets to demonstrate that the occurrence of great (magnitude ≥ 8 subduction earthquakes is strongly biased towards regions associated with intersections of oceanic fracture zones and subduction zones. We use a computational recommendation technology, a type of information filtering system technique widely used in searching, sorting, classifying, and filtering very large, statistically skewed data sets on the Internet, to demonstrate a robust association and rule out a random effect. Fracture zone–subduction zone intersection regions, representing only 25% of the global subduction coupling zone, are linked with 13 of the 15 largest (magnitude Mw ≥ 8.6 and half of the 50 largest (magnitude Mw ≥ 8.4 earthquakes. In contrast, subducting volcanic ridges and chains are only biased towards smaller earthquakes (magnitude < 8. The associations captured by our statistical analysis can be conceptually related to physical differences between subducting fracture zones and volcanic chains/ridges. Fracture zones are characterised by laterally continuous, uplifted ridges that represent normal ocean crust with a high degree of structural integrity, causing strong, persistent coupling in the subduction interface. Smaller volcanic ridges and chains have a relatively fragile heterogeneous internal structure and are separated from the underlying ocean crust by a detachment interface, resulting in weak coupling and relatively small earthquakes, providing a conceptual basis for the observed dichotomy.

  16. Satellite Tidal Magnetic Signals Constrain Oceanic Lithosphere-Asthenosphere Boundary Earth Tomography with Tidal Magnetic Signals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grayver, Alexander V.; Schnepf, Neesha R.; Kuvshinov, Alexey V.; Sabaka, Terence J.; Chandrasekharan, Manoj; Olsen, Niles

    2016-01-01

    The tidal flow of electrically conductive oceans through the geomagnetic field results in the generation of secondary magnetic signals, which provide information on the subsurface structure. Data from the new generation of satellites were shown to contain magnetic signals due to tidal flow; however, there are no reports that these signals have been used to infer subsurface structure. Here we use satellite-detected tidal magnetic fields to image the global electrical structure of the oceanic lithosphere and upper mantle down to a depth of about 250 km. The model derived from more than 12 years of satellite data reveals an Approximately 72 km thick upper resistive layer followed by a sharp increase in electrical conductivity likely associated with the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary, which separates colder rigid oceanic plates from the ductile and hotter asthenosphere.

  17. The Othris Ophiolite, Greece: A snapshot of subduction initiation at a mid-ocean ridge

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Barth, M.G.; Mason, P.R.D.; Davies, G.R.; Drury, M.R.

    2008-01-01

    The mantle section of the Tethyan-type Othris Ophiolite, Greece, records tectono-magmatic processes characteristic of both mid-ocean ridges and supra-subduction zones. The Othris Ophiolite is a remnant of the Jurassic Neotethys Ocean, which existed between Eurasia and Gondwanaland. Othris

  18. Satellite tidal magnetic signals constrain oceanic lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Grayver, Alexander V.; Schnepf, Neesha R.; Kuvshinov, Alexey V.

    2016-01-01

    The tidal flow of electrically conductive oceans through the geomagnetic field results in the generation ofsecondary magnetic signals, which provide information on the subsurface structure. Data from the new generation of satellites were shown to contain magnetic signals due to tidal flow; howeve...

  19. Three steps of serpentinization in an eclogitized oceanic serpentinization front (Lanzo Massif - Western Alps)

    OpenAIRE

    DEBRET, Baptiste; NICOLLET, christian; ANDREANI, Muriel; SCHWARTZ, Stéphane; GODARD, Marguerite

    2013-01-01

    The Lanzo peridotite massif is a fragment of oceanic lithosphere generated in an ocean-continent transition context and eclogitized during alpine collision. Despite the subduction history, the massif has preserved its sedimentary oceanic cover, suggesting that it may have preserved its oceanic structure. It is an exceptional case for studying the evolution of a fragment of the lithosphere from its oceanization to its subduction and then exhumation. We present a field and petrological study re...

  20. Subduction zones seen by GOCE gravity gradients

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Švarc, Mario; Herceg, Matija; Cammarano, Fabio

    In this study, the GOCE (Gravity field and steady state Ocean Circulation Explorer) gradiometry data were used to study geologic structures and mass variations within the lithosphere in areas of known subduction zones. The advantage of gravity gradiometry over other gravity methods is that gradie...

  1. Hf-Nd isotope decoupling in the oceanic lithosphere: constraints from spinel peridotites from Oahu, Hawaii

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bizimis, Michael; Sen, Gautam; Salters, Vincent J. M.

    2004-01-01

    We present a detailed geochemical investigation on the Hf, Nd and Sr isotope compositions and trace and major element contents of clinopyroxene mineral separates from spinel lherzolite xenoliths from the island of Oahu, Hawaii. These peridotites are believed to represent the depleted oceanic lithosphere beneath Oahu, which is a residue of a MORB-related melting event some 80-100 Ma ago at a mid-ocean ridge. Clinopyroxenes from peridotites from the Salt Lake Crater (SLC) show a large range of Hf isotopic compositions, from ɛHf=12.2 (similar to the Honolulu volcanics series) to extremely radiogenic, ɛHf=65, at nearly constant 143Nd/ 144Nd ratios ( ɛNd=7-8). None of these samples show any isotopic evidence for interaction with Koolau-type melts. A single xenolith from the Pali vent is the only sample with Hf and Nd isotopic compositions that falls within the MORB field. The Hf isotopes correlate positively with the degree of depletion in the clinopyroxene (e.g. increasing Mg#, Cr#, decreasing Ti and heavy REE contents), but also with increasing Zr and Hf depletions relative to the adjacent REE in a compatibility diagram. The Lu/Hf isotope systematics of the SLC clinopyroxenes define apparent ages of 500 Ma or older and these compositions cannot be explained by mixing between any type of Hawaiian melts and the depleted Pacific lithosphere. Metasomatism of an ancient (e.g. 1 Ga or older) depleted peridotite protolith can, in principle, explain these apparent ages and the Nd-Hf isotope decoupling, but requires that the most depleted samples were subject to the least amount of metasomatism. Alternatively, the combined isotope, trace and major element compositions of these clinopyroxenes are best described by metasomatism of the 80-100 Ma depleted oceanic lithosphere by melts products of extensive mantle-melt interaction between Honolulu Volcanics-type melts and the depleted lithosphere.

  2. Eclogitization of the Subducted Oceanic Crust and Its Implications for the Mechanism of Slow Earthquakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xinyang; Zhao, Dapeng; Suzuki, Haruhiko; Li, Jiabiao; Ruan, Aiguo

    2017-12-01

    The generating mechanism and process of slow earthquakes can help us to better understand the seismogenic process and the petrological evolution of the subduction system, but they are still not very clear. In this work we present robust P and S wave tomography and Poisson's ratio images of the subducting Philippine Sea Plate beneath the Kii peninsula in Southwest Japan. Our results clearly reveal the spatial extent and variation of a low-velocity and high Poisson's ratio layer which is interpreted as the remnant of the subducted oceanic crust. The low-velocity layer disappears at depths >50 km, which is attributed to crustal eclogitization and consumption of fluids. The crustal eclogitization and destruction of the impermeable seal play a key role in the generation of slow earthquakes. The Moho depth of the overlying plate is an important factor affecting the depth range of slow earthquakes in warm subduction zones due to the transition of interface permeability from low to high there. The possible mechanism of the deep slow earthquakes is the dehydrated oceanic crustal rupture and shear slip at the transition zone in response to the crustal eclogitization and the temporal stress/strain field. A potential cause of the slow event gap existing beneath easternmost Shikoku and the Kii channel is the premature rupture of the subducted oceanic crust due to the large tensional force.

  3. History and evolution of Subduction in the Precambrium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fischer, R.; Gerya, T.

    2013-12-01

    Plate tectonics is a global self-organising process driven by negative buoyancy at thermal boundary layers. Phanerozoic plate tectonics with its typical subduction and orogeny is relatively well understood and can be traced back in the geological records of the continents. Interpretations of geological, petrological and geochemical observations from Proterozoic and Archean orogenic belts however (e.g. Brown, 2006), suggest a different tectonic regime in the Precambrian. Due to higher radioactive heat production the Precambrian lithosphere shows lower internal strength and is strongly weakened by percolating melts. The fundamental difference between Precambrian and Phanerozoic subduction is therefore the upper-mantle temperature, which determines the strength of the upper mantle (Brun, 2002) and the further subduction history. 3D petrological-thermomechanical numerical modelling experiments of oceanic subduction at an active plate at different upper-mantle temperatures show these different subduction regimes. For upper-mantle temperatures 250 K above the present day value no subduction occurs any more. The whole lithosphere starts to delaminate and drip-off. But the subduction style is not only a function of upper-mantle temperature but also strongly depends on the thickness of the subducting plate. If thinner present day oceanic plates are used in the Precambrian models, no shallow underplating is observed but steep subduction can be found up to an upper-mantle temperature of 200 K above present day values. Increasing oceanic plate thickness introduces a transition from steep to flat subduction at lower temperatures of around 150 K. Thicker oceanic plates in the Precambrium also agree with results from earlier studies, e.g. Abbott (1994). References: Abbott, D., Drury, R., Smith, W.H.F., 1994. Flat to steep transition in subduction style. Geology 22, 937-940. Brown, M., 2006. Duality of thermal regimes is the distinctive characteristic of plate tectonics since the

  4. Recycling of Oceanic Lithosphere: Water, fO2 and Fe-isotope Constraints

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bizmis, M.; Peslier, A. H.; McCammon, C. A.; Keshav, S.; Williams, H. M.

    2014-01-01

    Spinel peridotite and garnet pyroxenite xenoliths from Hawaii provide important clues about the composition of the oceanic lithosphere, and can be used to assess its contribution to mantle heterogeneity upon recycling. The peridotites have lower bulk H2O (approximately 70-114 ppm) than the MORB source, qualitatively consistent with melt depletion. The garnet pyroxenites (high pressure cumulates) have higher H2O (200-460 ppm, up to 550 ppm accounting for phlogopite) and low H2O/Ce ratios (less than 100). The peridotites have relatively light Fe-isotopes (delta Fe -57 = -0.34 to 0.13) that decrease with increasing depletion, while the pyroxenites are significantly heavier (delta Fe-57 up to 0.3). The observed xenolith, as well as MORB and OIB total Fe-isotope variability is larger that can be explained by existing melting models. The high H2O and low H2O/Ce ratios of pyroxenites are similar to estimates of EM-type OIB sources, while their heavy delta Fe-57 are similar to some Society and Cook-Austral basalts. Therefore, recycling of mineralogically enriched oceanic lithosphere (i.e. pyroxenites) may contribute to OIB sources and mantle heterogeneity. The Fe(3+)/Sigma? systematics of these xenoliths also suggest that there might be lateral redox gradients within the lithosphere, between juxtaposed oxidized spinel peridotites (deltaFMQ = -0.7 to 1.6, at 15 kb) and more reduced pyroxenites (deltaFMQ = -2 to -0.4, at 20-25kb). Such mineralogically and compositionally imposed fO2 gradients may generate local redox melting due to changes in fluid speciation (e.g. reduced fluids from pyroxenite encountering more oxidized peridotite). Formation of such incipient, small degree melts could further contribute to metasomatic features seen in peridotites, mantle heterogeneity, as well as the low velocity and high electrical conductivity structures near the base of the lithosphere and upper mantle.

  5. Seismic evidence for overpressured subducted oceanic crust and megathrust fault sealing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Audet, Pascal; Bostock, Michael G; Christensen, Nikolas I; Peacock, Simon M

    2009-01-01

    Water and hydrous minerals play a key part in geodynamic processes at subduction zones by weakening the plate boundary, aiding slip and permitting subduction-and indeed plate tectonics-to occur. The seismological signature of water within the forearc mantle wedge is evident in anomalies with low seismic shear velocity marking serpentinization. However, seismological observations bearing on the presence of water within the subducting plate itself are less well documented. Here we use converted teleseismic waves to obtain observations of anomalously high Poisson's ratios within the subducted oceanic crust from the Cascadia continental margin to its intersection with forearc mantle. On the basis of pressure, temperature and compositional considerations, the elevated Poisson's ratios indicate that water is pervasively present in fluid form at pore pressures near lithostatic values. Combined with observations of a strong negative velocity contrast at the top of the oceanic crust, our results imply that the megathrust is a low-permeability boundary. The transition from a low- to high-permeability plate interface downdip into the mantle wedge is explained by hydrofracturing of the seal by volume changes across the interface caused by the onset of crustal eclogitization and mantle serpentinization. These results may have important implications for our understanding of seismogenesis, subduction zone structure and the mechanism of episodic tremor and slip.

  6. Subduction Drive of Plate Tectonics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamilton, W. B.

    2003-12-01

    Don Anderson emphasizes that plate tectonics is self-organizing and is driven by subduction, which rights the density inversion generated as oceanic lithosphere forms by cooling of asthenosphere from the top. The following synthesis owes much to many discussions with him. Hinge rollback is the key to kinematics, and, like the rest of actual plate behavior, is incompatible with bottom-up convection drive. Subduction hinges (which are under, not in front of, thin leading parts of arcs and overriding plates) roll back into subducting plates. The Pacific shrinks because bounding hinges roll back into it. Colliding arcs, increasing arc curvatures, back-arc spreading, and advance of small arcs into large plates also require rollback. Forearcs of overriding plates commonly bear basins which preclude shortening of thin plate fronts throughout periods recorded by basin strata (100 Ma for Cretaceous and Paleogene California). This requires subequal rates of advance and rollback, and control of both by subduction. Convergence rate is equal to rates of rollback and advance in many systems but is greater in others. Plate-related circulation probably is closed above 650 km. Despite the popularity of concepts of plumes from, and subduction into, lower mantle, there is no convincing evidence for, and much evidence against, penetration of the 650 in either direction. That barrier not only has a crossing-inhibiting negative Clapeyron slope but also is a compositional boundary between fractionated (not "primitive"), sluggish lower mantle and fertile, mobile upper mantle. Slabs sink more steeply than they dip. Slabs older than about 60 Ma when their subduction began sink to, and lie down on and depress, the 650-km discontinuity, and are overpassed, whereas younger slabs become neutrally buoyant in mid-upper mantle, into which they are mixed as they too are overpassed. Broadside-sinking old slabs push all upper mantle, from base of oceanic lithosphere down to the 650, back under

  7. Origin and Distribution of Water Contents in Continental and Oceanic Lithospheric Mantle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peslier, Anne H.

    2013-01-01

    The water content distribution of the upper mantle will be reviewed as based on the peridotite record. The amount of water in cratonic xenoliths appears controlled by metasomatism while that of the oceanic mantle retains in part the signature of melting events. In both cases, the water distribution is heterogeneous both with depth and laterally, depending on localized water re-enrichments next to melt/fluid channels. The consequence of the water distribution on the rheology of the upper mantle and the location of the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary will also be discussed.

  8. Long distance transport of eclogite and blueschist during early Pacific Ocean subduction rollback

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tamblyn, Renee; Hand, Martin; Kelsey, David; Phillips, Glen; Anczkiewicz, Robert

    2017-04-01

    The Tasmanides in eastern Australia represent a period of continental crustal growth on the western margin of the Pacific Ocean associated with slab rollback from the Cambrian until the Triassic. During rollback numerical models predict that subduction products can become trapped in the forearc (Geyra et al., 2002), and can migrate with the trench as it retreats. In a long-lived subduction controlled regime such as the Tasmanides, this should result in an accumulation of subduction products with protracted geochronological and metamorphic histories. U-Pb, Lu-Hf, Sm-Nd and Ar-Ar geochronology and phase equilibria modelling of lawsonite-eclogite and garnet blueschist in the Southern New England Fold Belt in Australia demonstrate that high-P low-T rocks remained within a subduction setting for c. 40 Ma, from c. 500 to 460 Ma. High-P metamorphic rocks initially formed close to the Australian cratonic margin during the late Cambrian, and were subsequently transported over 1500 Ma oceanward, during which time subducted material continued to accumulate, resulting in the development of complex mélange which records eclogite and blueschist metamorphism and partial exhumation over 40 Ma. The duration of refrigerated metamorphism approximates the extensional evolution of the upper plate which culminated in the development of the Lachlan Fold Belt. The protracted record of eclogite and blueschist metamorphism indicates that rapid exhumation is not necessarily required for preservation of high-pressure metamorphic rocks from subduction systems. Reference: Gerya, T. V., Stockhert, B., & Perchuk, A. L. (2002). Exhumation of high-pressure metamorphic rocks in a subduction channel: A numerical simulation. Tectonics, 21(6), 6-1-6-19. doi:10.1029/2002tc001406

  9. Oceanic provenance of lithospheric mantle beneath Lower Silesia (SW Poland) and the two kinds of its "Fe-metasomatism"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Puziewicz, Jacek; Matusiak-Małek, Magdalena; Ntaflos, Theodoros; Kukuła, Anna; Ćwiek, Mateusz

    2016-04-01

    Lusatia is surrounded to the West and South West by Al-richer domains (the first Al-rich orthopyroxene occurrences in mantle xenoliths are located in the Rhön Mts. to the West and in Upper Palatinate to the South-West. The low Al content in orthopyroxene, corresponding to that typical for the Lower Silesian European mantle domain, is characteristic for (1) oceanic mantle formed in the mid ocean ridges (MOR) and (2) mantle wedge affected by extreme melting in the supra-subduction zones (SSZ). The SSZ harzburgites contain usually orthopyroxene which is more Al-poor (< 2.0 wt. % Al2O3) than that of the MOR ones (2.0 - 6. 0 wt. % Al2O3; Bonatti & Michael 1989, EPSL 91, 297-311). Thus, we infer that the Lower Silesian SCLM originated rather in the MOR setting. The Lower Silesian B harzburgites were formed by reactive basaltic melt percolation, which lowered the forsterite content in olivine and Mg# in orthopyroxene ("Fe metasomatism"). The B1 harzburgites contain orthopyroxene which is Al poor (see above) irrespectively of forsterite content of coexisting olivine. Thus, the medium which led to the "Fe-metasomatism" must have been also Al-poor. This criterion is met by tholeiitic basaltic melts which originate by multiple polybaric mantle melting in MOR environment. Their percolation in oceanic mantle leads to production of low-Al orthopyroxene (e. g in the peridotites from East Pacific Rise, Dick & Natland 1996 Proc ODP Sci Res, 147, 103-234). Therefore, we suggest that the B1 harzburgites originated by "Fe-metasomatism" also in the MOR setting. The coexistence of A and B1 harzburgites suggests that they represent lithospheric mantle generated in the magma-rich, thus rather fast-spreading, MOR. Textural relationships show that the Al-enriched B2 harzburgites were also affected by "Fe metasomatism", but by alkaline basaltic melt percolating in SCLM during Cenozoic rifting. The crust overlying western part of the Lower Silesian domain of European SCLM belongs to the easternmost

  10. The future of Earth's oceans: consequences of subduction initiation in the Atlantic and implications for supercontinent formation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Duarte, J.C.; Schellart, W.P.; Rosas, F.M.

    2016-01-01

    Subduction initiation is a cornerstone in the edifice of plate tectonics. It marks the turning point of the Earth's Wilson cycles and ultimately the supercycles as well. In this paper, we explore the consequences of subduction zone invasion in the Atlantic Ocean, following recent discoveries at the

  11. Kinematics of Late Cretaceous subduction initiation in the Neo-Tethys Ocean reconstructed from ophiolites of Turkey, Cyprus, and Syria

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Maffione, Marco; van Hinsbergen, Douwe J.J.; de Gelder, Giovanni I.N.O.; van der Goes, Freek C.; Morris, Antony

    Formation of new subduction zones represents one of the cornerstones of plate tectonics, yet both the kinematics and geodynamics governing this process remain enigmatic. A major subduction initiation event occurred in the Late Cretaceous, within the Neo-Tethys Ocean between Gondwana and Eurasia.

  12. Lithosphere destabilization by melt percolation during pre-oceanic rifting: Evidence from Alpine-Apennine ophiolitic peridotites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piccardo, Giovanni; Ranalli, Giorgio

    2017-04-01

    Orogenic peridotites from Alpine-Apennine ophiolite Massifs (Lanzo, Voltri, External and Internal Ligurides, - NW Italy, and Mt. Maggiore - Corsica) derive from the mantle lithosphere of the Ligurian Tethys. Field/structural and petrologic/geochemical studies provide constraints on the evolution of the lithospheric mantle during pre-oceanic passive rifting of the late Jurassic Ligurian Tethys ocean. Continental rifting by far-field tectonic forces induced extension of the lithosphere by means of km-scale extensional shear zones that developed before infiltration of melts from the asthenosphere (Piccardo and Vissers, 2007). After significant thinning of the lithosphere, the passively upwelling asthenosphere underwent spinel-facies decompression melting along the axial zone of the extensional system. Silica-undersaturated melt fractions percolated through the lithospheric mantle via diffuse/focused porous flow and interacted with the host peridotite through pyroxenes-dissolving/olivine-precipitating melt/rock reactions. Pyroxene dissolution and olivine precipitation modified the composition of the primary silica-undersaturated melts into derivative silica-saturated melts, while the host lithospheric spinel lherzolites were transformed into pyroxene-depleted/olivine-enriched reactive spinel harzburgites and dunites. The derivative liquids interacted through olivine-dissolving/orthopyroxene+plagioclase-crystallizing reactions with the host peridotites that were impregnated and refertilized (Piccardo et al., 2015). The saturated melts stagnated and crystallized in the shallow mantle lithosphere (as testified by diffuse interstitial crystallization of euhedral orthopyroxene and anhedral plagioclase) and locally ponded, forming orthopyroxene-rich/olivine-free gabbro-norite pods (Piccardo and Guarnieri, 2011). Reactive and impregnated peridotites are characterized by high equilibration temperatures (up to 1250 °C) even at low pressure, plagioclase-peridotite facies

  13. Seismic observation of a sharp post-garnet phase transition within the Farallon crust: Evidence for oceanic plateau subduction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maguire, R.; Ritsema, J.

    2017-12-01

    The tectonic evolution of North America over the past 150 million years was heavily influenced by the complex subduction history of the Farallon plate. In particular, Laramide mountain building may have been triggered by the initiation of flat slab subduction in the late Cretaceous. While it has been proposed that the cause of slab flattening is related to the subduction of an oceanic plateau[1], direct geophysical evidence of a subducted oceanic plateau is lacking. Here, using P-to-S receiver functions, we detect a sharp seismic discontinuity at 720-km depth beneath the southeastern United States and Gulf of Mexico. We interpret this discontinuity as a garnet-to-bridgmanite phase transition occurring within a thickened Farallon crust. Our results are consistent with a subducted oceanic plateau (likely the conjugate half of the Hess rise) which is foundering below the base of the mantle transition zone. Additionally, we find a strong 520-km discontinuity beneath the southeastern United States which may indicate a hydrous transition zone due to the release of H2O from the Farallon slab. These results provide insight into the dynamics of flat slab subduction as well as the tectonic history of North America. [1] Livaccari, R. F., Burke, K., & Şengör, A. M. C. (1981). Was the Laramide orogeny related to subduction of an oceanic plateau? Nature, v. 289, p. 276-278, doi: 10.1038/289276a0

  14. Water in the oceanic lithosphere: Salt Lake Crater xenoliths, Oahu, Hawaii

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peslier, A. H.; Bizimis, M.

    2010-12-01

    Water can be present in nominally anhydrous minerals of peridotites in the form of hydrogen bonded to structural oxygen. Such water in the oceanic upper mantle could have a significant effect on its physical and chemical properties. However, the water content of the MORB source has been inferred indirectly from the compositions of basalts. Direct determinations on abyssal peridotites are scarce because they have been heavily hydrothermally altered. Here we present the first water analyses of minerals from spinel peridotite xenoliths of Salt Lake Crater, Oahu, Hawaii, which are exceptionally fresh. These peridotites are thought to represent fragments of the Pacific oceanic lithosphere that was refertilized by alkalic Hawaiian melts. A few have unradiogenic Os and radiogenic Hf isotopes and may be fragments of an ancient ( 2 Ga) depleted and recycled lithosphere. Water contents in olivine (Ol), orthopyroxene (Opx), and clinopyroxene (Cpx) were determined by FTIR spectrometry. Preliminary H_{2}O contents show ranges of 8-10 ppm for Ol, 151-277 ppm for Opx, and 337-603 ppm for Cpx. Reconstructed bulk rock H_{2}O contents range from 88-131 ppm overlapping estimates for the MORB source. Water contents between Ol minerals of the same xenolith are heterogeneous and individual OH infrared bands vary within a mineral with lower 3230 cm^{-1} and higher 3650-3400 cm^{-1} band heights from core to edge. This observation suggests disturbance of the hydrogen in Ol likely occurring during xenolith entrainment to the surface. Pyroxene water contents are higher than most water contents in pyroxenes from continental peridotite xenoliths and higher than those of abyssal peridotites. Cpx water contents decrease with increasing degree of depletion (e.g. increasing Fo in Ol and Cr# in spinel) consistent with an incompatible behavior of water. However Cpx water contents also show a positive correlation with LREE/HREE ratios and LREE concentrations consistent with refertilization. Opx

  15. Water in the Oceanic Lithosphere: Salt Lake Crater Xenoliths, Oahu, Hawaii

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peslier, Anne H.; Bizimis, Michael

    2010-01-01

    Water can be present in nominally anhydrous minerals of peridotites in the form of hydrogen bonded to structural oxygen. Such water in the oceanic upper mantle could have a significant effect on its physical and chemical properties. However, the water content of the MORB source has been inferred indirectly from the compositions of basalts. Direct determinations on abyssal peridotites are scarce because they have been heavily hydrothermally altered. Here we present the first water analyses of minerals from spinel peridotite xenoliths of Salt Lake Crater, Oahu, Hawaii, which are exceptionally fresh. These peridotites are thought to represent fragments of the Pacific oceanic lithosphere that was refertilized by alkalic Hawaiian melts. A few have unradiogenic Os and radiogenic Hf isotopes and may be fragments of an ancient (2 Ga) depleted and recycled lithosphere. Water contents in olivine (Ol), orthopyroxene (Opx), and clinopyroxene (Cpx) were determined by FTIR spectrometry. Preliminary H_{2}O contents show ranges of 8-10 ppm for Ol, 151-277 ppm for Opx, and 337-603 ppm for Cpx. Reconstructed bulk rock H_{2}O contents range from 88-131 ppm overlapping estimates for the MORB source. Water contents between Ol minerals of the same xenolith are heterogeneous and individual OH infrared bands vary within a mineral with lower 3230 cm^{-1} and higher 3650-3400 cm^{-1} band heights from core to edge. This observation suggests disturbance of the hydrogen in Ol likely occurring during xenolith entrainment to the surface. Pyroxene water contents are higher than most water contents in pyroxenes from continental peridotite xenoliths and higher than those of abyssal peridotites. Cpx water contents decrease with increasing degree of depletion (e.g. increasing Fo in Ol and Cr# in spinel) consistent with an incompatible behavior of water. However Cpx water contents also show a positive correlation with LREE/HREE ratios and LREE concentrations consistent with refertilization. Opx water

  16. Separate zones of sulfate and sulfide release from subducted mafic oceanic crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomkins, Andrew G.; Evans, Katy A.

    2015-10-01

    Liberation of fluids during subduction of oceanic crust is thought to transfer sulfur into the overlying sub-arc mantle. However, despite the importance of sulfur cycling through magmatic arcs to climate change, magma oxidation and ore formation, there has been little investigation of the metamorphic reactions responsible for sulfur release from subducting slabs. Here, we investigate the relative stability of anhydrite (CaSO4) and pyrite (FeS2) in subducted basaltic oceanic crust, the largest contributor to the subducted sulfur budget, to place constraints on the processes controlling sulfur release. Our analysis of anhydrite stability at high pressures suggests that this mineral should dominantly dissolve into metamorphic fluids released across the transition from blueschist to eclogite facies (∼450-650 °C), disappearing at lower temperatures on colder geothermal trajectories. In contrast, we suggest that sulfur release via conversion of pyrite to pyrrhotite occurs at temperatures above 750 °C. This higher temperature stability is indicated by the preservation of pyrite-bornite inclusions in coesite-bearing eclogites from the Sulu Belt in China, which reached temperatures of at least 750 °C. Thus, sulfur may be released from subducting slabs in two separate pulses; (1) varying proportions of SO2, HSO4- and H2S are released via anhydrite breakdown at the blueschist-eclogite transition, promoting oxidation of remaining silicates in some domains, and (2) H2S is released via pyrite breakdown well into the eclogite facies, which may in some circumstances coincide with slab melting or supercritical liquid generation driven by influx of serpentinite-derived fluids. These results imply that the metallogenic potential in the sub-arc mantle above the subducting slab varies as a function of subduction depth, having the greatest potential above the blueschist-eclogite transition given the association between oxidised magmas and porphyry Cu(-Au-Mo) deposits. We speculate

  17. Where does subduction initiate and die? Insights from global convection models with continental drift

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ulvrova, Martina; Williams, Simon; Coltice, Nicolas; Tackley, Paul

    2017-04-01

    Plate tectonics is a prominent feature on Earth. Together with the underlying convecting mantle, plates form a self-organized system. In order to understand the dynamics of the coupled system, subduction of the lithospheric plates plays the key role since it links the exterior with the interior of the planet. In this work we study subduction initiation and death with respect to the position of the continental rafts. Using thermo-mechanical numerical calculations we investigate global convection models featuring self-consistent plate tectonics and continental drifting employing a pseudo-plastic rheology and testing the effect of a free surface. We consider uncompressible mantle convection in Boussinesq approximation that is basaly and internaly heated. Our calculations indicate that the presence of the continents alterns stress distribution within a certain distance from the margins. Intra-oceanic subudction initiation is favorable during super-continent cycles while the initiation at passive continental margin prevails when continents are dispersed. The location of subduction initiation is additionally controlled by the lithospheric strength. Very weak lithosphere results in domination of intra-oceanic subduction initiation. The subduction zones die more easily in the vicinity of the continent due to the strong rheological contrast between the oceanic and continental lithosphere. In order to compare our findings with subduction positions through time recorded on Earth, we analyse subduction birth in global plate reconstruction back to 410 My.

  18. How does continental lithosphere break-apart? A 3D seismic view on the transition from magma-poor rifted margin to magmatic oceanic lithosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emmanuel, M.; Lescanne, M.; Picazo, S.; Tomasi, S.

    2017-12-01

    In the last decade, high-quality seismic data and drilling results drastically challenged our ideas about how continents break apart. New models address their observed variability and are presently redefining basics of rifting as well as exploration potential along deepwater rifted margins. Seafloor spreading is even more constrained by decades of scientific exploration along Mid Oceanic Ridges. By contrast, the transition between rifting and drifting remains a debated subject. This lithospheric breakup "event" is geologically recorded along Ocean-Continent Transitions (OCT) at the most distal part of margins before indubitable oceanic crust. Often lying along ultra-deepwater margin domains and buried beneath a thick sedimentary pile, high-quality images of these domains are rare but mandatory to get strong insights on the processes responsible for lithospheric break up and what are the consequences for the overlying basins. We intend to answer these questions by studying a world-class 3D seismic survey in a segment of a rifted margin exposed in the Atlantic. Through these data, we can show in details the OCT architecture between a magma-poor hyper-extended margin (with exhumed mantle) and a classical layered oceanic crust. It is characterized by 1- the development of out-of-sequence detachment systems with a landward-dipping geometry and 2- the increasing magmatic additions oceanwards (intrusives and extrusives). Geometry of these faults suggests that they may be decoupled at a mantle brittle-ductile interface what may be an indicator on thermicity. Furthermore, magmatism increases as deformation migrates to the future first indubitable oceanic crust what controls a progressive magmatic crustal thickening below, above and across a tapering rest of margin. As the magmatic budget increases oceanwards, full-rate divergence is less and less accommodated by faulting. Magmatic-sedimentary architectures of OCT is therefore changing from supra-detachment to magmatic

  19. Water Content of the Oceanic Lithosphere at Hawaii from FTIR Analysis of Peridotite Xenoliths

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peslier, Anne H.; Bizmis, Michael

    2013-01-01

    Although water in the mantle is mostly present as trace H dissolved in minerals, it has a large influence on its melting and rheological properties. The water content of the mantle lithosphere beneath continents is better constrained by abundant mantle xenolith data than beneath oceans where it is mainly inferred from MORB glass analysis. Using Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectrometry, we determined the water content of olivine (Ol), clinopyroxene (Cpx) and orthopyroxene (Opx) in spinel peridotite xenoliths from Salt Lake Crater, Oahu, Hawaii, which are thought to represent fragments of the Pacific oceanic lithosphere that was refertilized by alkalic Hawaiian melts. Only Ol exhibits H diffusion profiles, evidence of limited H loss during xenolith transport to the surface. Water concentrations (Ol: 9-28 ppm H2O, Cpx: 246-566 ppm H2O, Opx: 116-224 ppm H2O) are within the range of those from continental settings but higher than those from Gakkel ridge abyssal peridotites. The Opx H2O contents are similar to those of abyssal peridotites from Atlantic ridge Leg 153 (170-230 ppm) but higher than those from Leg 209 (10- 14 ppm). The calculated bulk peridotite water contents (94 to 144 ppm H2O) are in agreement with MORB mantle source water estimates and lower than estimates for the source of Hawaiian rejuvenated volcanism (approx 540 ppm H2O) . The water content of Cpx and most Opx correlates negatively with spinel Cr#, and positively with pyroxene Al and HREE contents. This is qualitatively consistent with the partitioning of H into the melt during partial melting, but the water contents are too high for the degree of melting these peridotites experienced. Melts in equilibrium with xenolith minerals have H2O/Ce ratios similar to those of OIB

  20. Some consequences of the subduction of young slabs

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    England, P.; Wortel, R.

    The negative buoyancy force exerted by a subducting oceanic slab depends on its descent velocity, and strongly on its age. For lithosphere close to thermal equilibrium, this force dominates by a large margin the resisting forces arising from friction on the plate boundary and compositional buoyancy.

  1. Seismicity of Romania: fractal properties of earthquake space, time and energy distributions and their correlation with segmentation of subducted lithosphere and Vrancea seismic source

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Popescu, E.; Ardeleanu, L.; Bazacliu, O.; Popa, M.; Radulian, M.; Rizescu, M.

    2002-01-01

    now (first two stages) refer to the determination of the fractal properties of the time and space distributions for the Vrancea subcrustal earthquakes. The application of the variation coefficient method in time domain outlines the existence of different types of generation models in the two segments delimited on depth in the Vrancea subcrustal region: crack-like events (M D ≤ 3.6) which are more clustered in the upper segment of the subducted lithosphere; asperity-like events (M D > 3.6) which on the contrary are more clustered in the lower segment of the subducted lithosphere. Application of fractal statistics leads us to the following conclusions: Time fractal dimension, D t , of the Vrancea subcrustal earthquakes varies in a relative small interval, D t with in the range [0.81 - 0.92]; these values indicate a clustering tendency in all analyzed cases; Data set is well approximated by a fractal model for a time domain τ with in the range [2 to 2 7 days]; in the same time interval, deviations from the linearity are also noticed, indicating a superposition of the scale invariance behavior (fractal properties) with a Poisson distribution (random). As concerns the space clustering properties of the Vrancea subcrustal events, our purpose is to test the hypothesis of segmentation on depth of the subducted lithosphere. Our work emphasized consequently the existence of two maxima in the depth-earthquake distribution: a) 60 ≤ h ≤110 km; b)110 < h ≤ 220 km. The space clustering analysis showed also that: 1. In the case of the upper segment, the fractal dimension of the epicenter distribution decreases in time from 1.83 to 1.71; 2. In the case of the lower segment, the fractal dimension of the epicenter distribution has a tendency of increase in time from 1.65 to 1.91; 3. In the case of the whole subducted slab, there is a trend of increase in time from 1.65 to 1.91. In conclusion, the analysis of the clustering properties in time and space in the case of Vrancea

  2. Water, oceanic fracture zones and the lubrication of subducting plate boundaries—insights from seismicity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlaphorst, David; Kendall, J.-Michael; Collier, Jenny S.; Verdon, James P.; Blundy, Jon; Baptie, Brian; Latchman, Joan L.; Massin, Frederic; Bouin, Marie-Paule

    2016-03-01

    We investigate the relationship between subduction processes and related seismicity for the Lesser Antilles Arc using the Gutenberg-Richter law. This power law describes the earthquake-magnitude distribution, with the gradient of the cumulative magnitude distribution being commonly known as the b-value. The Lesser Antilles Arc was chosen because of its along-strike variability in sediment subduction and the transition from subduction to strike-slip movement towards its northern and southern ends. The data are derived from the seismicity catalogues from the Seismic Research Centre of The University of the West Indies and the Observatoires Volcanologiques et Sismologiques of the Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris and consist of subcrustal events primarily from the slab interface. The b-value is found using a Kolmogorov-Smirnov test for a maximum-likelihood straight line-fitting routine. We investigate spatial variations in b-values using a grid-search with circular cells as well as an along-arc projection. Tests with different algorithms and the two independent earthquake cataloges provide confidence in the robustness of our results. We observe a strong spatial variability of the b-value that cannot be explained by the uncertainties. Rather than obtaining a simple north-south b-value distribution suggestive of the dominant control on earthquake triggering being water released from the sedimentary cover on the incoming American Plates, or a b-value distribution that correlates with on the obliquity of subduction, we obtain a series of discrete, high b-value `bull's-eyes' along strike. These bull's-eyes, which indicate stress release through a higher fraction of small earthquakes, coincide with the locations of known incoming oceanic fracture zones on the American Plates. We interpret the results in terms of water being delivered to the Lesser Antilles subduction zone in the vicinity of fracture zones providing lubrication and thus changing the character of the

  3. Unraveling multiple phases of sulfur cycling during the alteration of ancient ultramafic oceanic lithosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwarzenbach, Esther M.; Gill, Benjamin C.; Johnston, David T.

    2018-02-01

    Ultramafic-hosted hydrothermal systems - characterized by ongoing serpentinization reactions - exert an important influence on the global sulfur cycle. Extensive water-rock interaction causes elemental exchange between seawater and the oceanic lithosphere, effectively removing sulfate from seawater through both abiogenic and biogenic processes. Here, we use bulk rock multiple sulfur isotope signatures (32S, 33S, 34S) and in situ sulfide analyses together with petrographic observations to track the sulfur cycling processes and the hydrothermal evolution of ancient peridotite-hosted hydrothermal systems. We investigate serpentinized peridotites from the Northern Apennine ophiolite in Italy and the Santa Elena ophiolite in Costa Rica and compare those with the Iberian Margin (Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Leg 149 and 173) and the 15°20‧N Fracture Zone along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge (ODP Leg 209). In situ measurements of sulfides in the Northern Apennine serpentinites preserve a large range in δ34Ssulfide of -33.8 to +13.3‰ with significant heterogeneities within single sulfide grains and depending on mineralogy. Detailed mineralogical investigation and comparison with bulk rock Δ33Ssulfide and in situ δ34Ssulfide data implies a thermal evolution of the system from high temperatures (∼350 °C) that allowed thermochemical sulfate reduction and input of hydrothermal sulfide to lower temperatures (rock associated with detachment faulting along a mid-ocean ridge spreading center. The Santa Elena peridotites preserve distinct signatures for fluid circulation at high temperatures with both closed system thermochemical sulfate reduction and input of mafic-derived sulfur. In addition, the peridotites provide strong evidence that low Ca2+ concentrations in peridotite-hosted systems can limit sulfate removal during anhydrite precipitation at temperatures above 150 °C. This may play a central role for the availability of sulfate to microbial communities within these

  4. The initial superposition of oceanic and continental units in the southern Western Alps: constraints on geometrical restoration and kinematics of the continental subduction wedge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dumont, Thierry; Schwartz, Stéphane; Matthews, Steve; Malusa, Marco; Jouvent, Marine

    2017-04-01

    The tectonic contact separating continental and oceanic units is preserved at outcrop in many locations within the Western Alps. The contact has experienced prolonged and progressive deformation during Oligocene collision and subsequent 'extrusive' contraction which is approximately westerly-directed (Dumont et al., 2012). Despite variable metamorphic grade, this tectonic contact displays a relative consistency of tectonostratigraphic and structural characteristics. Removal of the Oligocene and younger deformation is a critical requirement to allow assessment of the kinematic evolution during the Eocene continental subduction phase. The best preserved relationships are observed near the base of the Helminthoid Flysch nappes, in the footwall of the Penninic thrust, or in the external part of the Briançonnais zone. Here, the oceanic units are composed of detached Cretaceous sediments, but they are underlain locally by an olistostrome containing basaltic clasts. Further to the east, the internal boundary of the Briançonnais zone s.l. (including the 'Prepiedmont units'), is frequently marked by breccia or megabreccia, but is strongly affected by blueschist-facies metamorphism and by approximately easterly directed backfolding and backthrusting. At one locality, there is compelling evidence that the oceanic and continental units were already tectonically stacked and metamorphosed (together) 32Ma ago. Some megabreccias of mixed continental/oceanic provenance can be interpreted as a metamorphic equivalent of the external olistostrome, products of the initial pulses of tectonic stacking. The overlying units are composed dominantly of metasediments, containing distributed ophiolitic megaboudins (Tricart & Schwartz, 2006). Further east again, the tectonic contact separates the Dora-Maira continental basement from the Mt. Viso units which are predominantly composed of oceanic lithosphere. Both the Dora-Maira and Mt. Viso units are eclogitic, but the HP peak is apparently

  5. Uppermost oceanic crust structure and properties from multichannel seismic data at the Alaska subduction zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Becel, A.; Carton, H. D.; Shillington, D. J.

    2017-12-01

    The most heterogeneous, porous and permeable layer within a subducting oceanic crust is the uppermost layer called Layer 2A. This layer, made of extrusive basalts, forms at the ridge axis and persists as a thin ( 600 m) low-velocity cap in old crust. Nearing the trench axis, when oceanic plate bends, normal faults can be formed or reactivated at the outer-rise allowing a more vigorous hydrothermal circulation to resume within this layer. Porosity and heterogeneity within this layer are important to assess because these parameters might have a profound impact on subduction zone processes. However, conventional refraction data quality is rarely good enough to look into detail into the properties of the uppermost oceanic layer. Here we use 2D marine long-offset multi-channel seismic (MCS) reflection data collected offshore of the Alaska Peninsula during the ALEUT Program. The dataset was acquired aboard the R/V Marcus Langseth with a 636-channels, 8-km long streamer. We present initial results from three 140 km long profiles across the 52-56Myr old incoming Pacific oceanic crust formed at fast spreading rate: two perpendicular margin and one parallel margin profiles. Those profiles are located outboard of the Shumagin gaps. Outboard of this subduction zone segment, abundant bending related normal faults are imaged and concentrated within 50-60 km of the trench. Long-offset MCS data exhibit a prominent triplication that includes postcritical reflections and turning waves within the upper crust at offsets larger than 3 km. The triplication suggests the presence of a velocity discontinuity within the upper oceanic crust. We follow a systematic and uniform approach to extract upper crustal post-critical reflections and add them to them to the vertical incidence MCS images. Images reveal small-scale variations in the thickness of the Layer 2A and the strength of its base along the profiles. The second step consists of the downward continuation followed by travel

  6. Anomalous Structure of Oceanic Lithosphere in the North Atlantic and Arctic Oceans: A Preliminary Analysis Based on Bathymetry, Gravity and Crustal Structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barantsrva, O.

    2014-12-01

    We present a preliminary analysis of the crustal and upper mantle structure for off-shore regions in the North Atlantic and Arctic oceans. These regions have anomalous oceanic lithosphere: the upper mantle of the North Atlantic ocean is affected by the Iceland plume, while the Arctic ocean has some of the slowest spreading rates. Our specific goal is to constrain the density structure of the upper mantle in order to understand the links between the deep lithosphere dynamics, ocean spreading, ocean floor bathymetry, heat flow and structure of the oceanic lithosphere in the regions where classical models of evolution of the oceanic lithosphere may not be valid. The major focus is on the oceanic lithosphere, but the Arctic shelves with a sufficient data coverage are also included into the analysis. Out major interest is the density structure of the upper mantle, and the analysis is based on the interpretation of GOCE satellite gravity data. To separate gravity anomalies caused by subcrustal anomalous masses, the gravitational effect of water, crust and the deep mantle is removed from the observed gravity field. For bathymetry we use the global NOAA database ETOPO1. The crustal correction to gravity is based on two crustal models: (1) global model CRUST1.0 (Laske, 2013) and, for a comparison, (2) a regional seismic model EUNAseis (Artemieva and Thybo, 2013). The crustal density structure required for the crustal correction is constrained from Vp data. Previous studies have shown that a large range of density values corresponds to any Vp value. To overcome this problem and to reduce uncertainty associated with the velocity-density conversion, we account for regional tectonic variations in the Northern Atlantics as constrained by numerous published seismic profiles and potential-field models across the Norwegian off-shore crust (e.g. Breivik et al., 2005, 2007), and apply different Vp-density conversions for different parts of the region. We present preliminary results

  7. Lithospheric structure of southern Indian shield and adjoining oceans: integrated modelling of topography, gravity, geoid and heat flow data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Niraj; Zeyen, H.; Singh, A. P.; Singh, B.

    2013-07-01

    For the present 2-D lithospheric density modelling, we selected three geotransects of more than 1000 km in length each crossing the southern Indian shield, south of 16°N, in N-S and E-W directions. The model is based on the assumption of local isostatic equilibrium and is constrained by the topography, gravity and geoid anomalies, by geothermal data, and where available by seismic data. Our integrated modelling approach reveals a crustal configuration with the Moho depth varying from ˜40 km beneath the Dharwar Craton, and ˜39 km beneath the Southern Granulite Terrane to about 15-20 km beneath the adjoining oceans. The lithospheric thickness varies significantly along the three profiles from ˜70-100 km under the adjoining oceans to ˜130-135 km under the southern block of Southern Granulite Terrane including Sri Lanka and increasing gradually to ˜165-180 km beneath the northern block of Southern Granulite Terrane and the Dharwar Craton. This step-like lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB) structure indicates a normal lithospheric thickness beneath the adjoining oceans, the northern block of Southern Granulite Terrane and the Dharwar Craton. The thin lithosphere below the southern block of Southern Granulite Terrane including Sri Lanka is, however, atypical considering its age. Our results suggest that the southern Indian shield as a whole cannot be supported isostatically only by thickened crust; a thin and hot lithosphere beneath the southern block of Southern Granulite Terrane including Sri Lanka is required to explain the high topography, gravity, geoid and crustal temperatures. The widespread thermal perturbation during Pan-African (550 Ma) metamorphism and the breakup of Gondwana during late Cretaceous are proposed as twin cause mechanism for the stretching and/or convective removal of the lower part of lithospheric mantle and its replacement by hotter and lighter asthenosphere in the southern block of Southern Granulite Terrane including Sri Lanka

  8. A record of spontaneous subduction initiation in the Izu-Bonin-Mariana arc

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arculus, Richard J.; Ishizuka, Osamu; Bogus, Kara A.; Gurnis, Michael; Hickey-Vargas, Rosemary; Aljahdali, Mohammed H.; Bandini-Maeder, Alexandre N.; Barth, Andrew P.; Brandl, Philipp A.; Drab, Laureen; Do Monte Guerra, Rodrigo; Hamada, Morihisa; Jiang, Fuqing; Kanayama, Kyoko; Kender, Sev; Kusano, Yuki; Li, He; Loudin, Lorne C.; Maffione, Marco; Marsaglia, Kathleen M.; McCarthy, Anders; Meffre, Sebastién; Morris, Antony; Neuhaus, Martin; Savov, Ivan P.; Sena, Clara; Tepley, Frank J., III; van der Land, Cees; Yogodzinski, Gene M.; Zhang, Zhaohui

    2015-09-01

    The initiation of tectonic plate subduction into the mantle is poorly understood. If subduction is induced by the push of a distant mid-ocean ridge or subducted slab pull, we expect compression and uplift of the overriding plate. In contrast, spontaneous subduction initiation, driven by subsidence of dense lithosphere along faults adjacent to buoyant lithosphere, would result in extension and magmatism. The rock record of subduction initiation is typically obscured by younger deposits, so evaluating these possibilities has proved elusive. Here we analyse the geochemical characteristics of igneous basement rocks and overlying sediments, sampled from the Amami Sankaku Basin in the northwest Philippine Sea. The uppermost basement rocks are areally widespread and supplied via dykes. They are similar in composition and age--as constrained by the biostratigraphy of the overlying sediments--to the 52-48-million-year-old basalts in the adjacent Izu-Bonin-Mariana fore-arc. The geochemical characteristics of the basement lavas indicate that a component of subducted lithosphere was involved in their genesis, and the lavas were derived from mantle source rocks that were more melt-depleted than those tapped at mid-ocean ridges. We propose that the basement lavas formed during the inception of Izu-Bonin-Mariana subduction in a mode consistent with the spontaneous initiation of subduction.

  9. Peridotites and mafic igneous rocks at the foot of the Galicia Margin: an oceanic or continental lithosphere? A discussion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Korprobst, J.; Chazot, G.

    2016-10-01

    An ultramafic/mafic complex is exposed on the sea floor at the foot of the Galicia Margin (Spain and Portugal). It comprises various types of peridotites and pyroxenites, as well as amphibole-diorites, gabbros, dolerites and basalts. For chronological and structural reasons (gabbros were emplaced within peridotites before the continental break-up) this unit cannot be assigned to the Atlantic oceanic crust. The compilation of all available petrological and geochemical data suggests that peridotites are derived from the sub-continental lithospheric mantle, deeply transformed during Cretaceous rifting. Thus, websterite dykes extracted from the depleted MORB mantle reservoir (DMM), were emplaced early within the lithospheric harzburgites; subsequent boudinage and tectonic dispersion of these dykes in the peridotites, during deformation stages at the beginning of rifting, resulted in the formation of fertile but isotopically depleted lherzolites. Sterile but isotopically enriched websterites, would represent melting residues in the peridotites, after significant partial melting and melt extraction related to the thermal erosion of the lithosphere. The latter melts are probably the source of brown amphibole metasomatic crystallization in some peridotites, as well as of the emplacement of amphibole-diorite dykes. Melts directly extracted from the asthenosphere were emplaced as gabbro within the sub-continental mantle. Mixing these DMM melts together with the enriched melts extracted from the lithosphere, provided the intermediate isotopic melt-compositions - in between the DMM and Oceanic Islands Basalts reservoir - observed for the dolerites and basalts, none of which are characterized by a genuine N-MORB signature. An enriched lithospheric mantle, present prior to rifting of the Galicia margin, is in good agreement with data from the Messejana dyke (Portugal) and more generally, with those of all continental tholeiites of the Central Atlantic Magmatic Province (CAMP

  10. Modification of an ancient subcontinental lithospheric mantle by continental subduction: Insight from the Maowu garnet peridotites in the Dabie UHP belt, eastern China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yi; Su, Bin; Chu, Zhuyin

    2017-05-01

    Orogenic mantle-derived peridotites commonly originate from the subcontinental lithospheric mantle (SCLM) and thus provide a key target to investigate the modification of the SCLM by a subducting slab. The Maowu ultramafic rocks from the Dabie ultrahigh-pressure (UHP) metamorphic belt have formerly been debated as representing cumulates or mantle-derived peridotites. Detailed petrological and geochemical data presented in this study provide new constraints on the origin and formation of the peridotites involving melt depletion in the ancient SCLM and deep crustal metasomatism. The Maowu garnet dunites have refractory bulk compositions characterized by high Mg# (91.9-92.0) and Ni (2537-2892 ppm) values and low Al2O3 (0.26-0.76 wt.%), CaO (0.05-0.32 wt.%), TiO2 (China craton. Many garnet orthopyroxenite veins crosscutting the Maowu dunites preserve abundant metasomatic textures and show variable enrichment in incompatible elements. Mineral and whole-rock chemistry indicate that these veins represent metasomatic products between the wall dunites and silica-rich hydrous melts under UHP conditions. The veins show large variations in platinum-group element (PGE) signatures and Re-Os isotopes. The garnet-poor orthopyroxenite veins are characterized by low Al2O3 ( 6 wt.%) and S (99-306 ppm) contents and show melt-like PGE patterns and high 187Os/188Os ratios (up to 0.36910). These features, combined with the occurrence of interstitial sulfides in the garnet-rich orthopyroxenite veins, suggest that crust-derived sulfur-saturated silicate melts may have significantly modified the PGE signature and destroyed the Re-Os systematics of the SCLM. However, when the crust-derived silicate melts became sulfur-depleted, such melts would not significantly modify the PGE patterns, radiogenic Os-isotope compositions or the Re-depletion model ages of the SCLM. Consequently, deep crust-mantle interactions in continental subduction zones could induce high degrees of Os isotopic

  11. Stacking and metamorphism of continuous segments of subducted lithosphere in a high-pressure wedge: The example of Alpine Corsica (France)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vitale Brovarone, Alberto; Beyssac, Olivier; Malavieille, Jacques; Molli, Giancarlo; Beltrando, Marco; Compagnoni, Roberto

    2013-01-01

    homogeneous in metamorphism, laterally continuous and have characteristic lithostratigraphic features. This study also suggests a direct link between the pre-orogenic extensional setting and the present-day compressional structure of Alpine Corsica, indicating that large sections of subducted lithosphere were subducted and exhumed as coherent domains. These features provide important insight on the mechanism of stacking and exhumation of HP rocks, and make Alpine Corsica a unique reference for mountain-building processes in Tethyan-type orogens.

  12. Large scale deformation of the oceanic lithosphere: insights from numerical modeling of the Indo-Australian intraplate deformation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Royer, J.; Brandon, V.

    2011-12-01

    The large-scale deformation observed in the Indo-Australian plate seems to challenge tenets of plate tectonics: plate rigidity and narrow oceanic plate boundaries. Its distribution along with kinematic data inversions however suggest that the Indo-Australian plate can be viewed as a composite plate made of three rigid component plates - India, Capricorn, Australia - separated by wide and diffuse boundaries either extensional or compressional. We tested this model using the SHELLS numerical code (Kong & Bird, 1995) where the Indo-Australian plate was meshed into 5281 spherical triangular finite elements. Model boundary conditions are defined only by the plate velocities of the rigid parts of the Indo-Australian plate relative to their neighboring plates. Different plate velocity models were tested. From these boundary conditions, and taking into account the age of the lithosphere, seafloor topography, and assumptions on the rheology of the oceanic lithosphere, SHELLS predicts strain rates within the plate. We also tested the role of fossil fracture zones as potential lithospheric weaknesses. In a first step, we considered different component plate pairs (India/Capricorn, Capricorn/Australia, India/Australia). Since the limits of their respective diffuse boundary (i.e. the limits of the rigid component plates) are not known, we let the corresponding edge free. In a second step, we merged the previous meshes to consider the whole Indo-Australian plate. In this case, the velocities on the model boundaries are all fully defined and were set relative to the Capricorn plate. Our models predict deformation patterns very consistent with that observed. Pre-existing structures of the lithosphere play an important role in the intraplate deformation and its distribution. The Chagos Bank focuses the extensional deformation between the Indian and Capricorn plates. Reactivation of fossil fracture zones may accommodate large part of the deformation both in extensional areas, off

  13. Magma explains low estimates of lithospheric strength based on flexure of ocean island loads

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buck, W. Roger; Lavier, Luc L.; Choi, Eunseo

    2015-04-01

    One of the best ways to constrain the strength of the Earth's lithosphere is to measure the deformation caused by large, well-defined loads. The largest, simple vertical load is that of the Hawaiian volcanic island chain. An impressively detailed recent analysis of the 3D response to that load by Zhong and Watts (2013) considers the depth range of seismicity below Hawaii and the seismically determined geometry of lithospheric deflection. These authors find that the friction coefficient for the lithosphere must be in the normal range measured for rocks, but conclude that the ductile flow strength has to be far weaker than laboratory measurements suggest. Specifically, Zhong and Watts (2013) find that stress differences in the mantle lithosphere below the island chain are less than about 200 MPa. Standard rheologic models suggest that for the ~50 km thick lithosphere inferred to exist below Hawaii yielding will occur at stress differences of about 1 GPa. Here we suggest that magmatic accommodation of flexural extension may explain Hawaiian lithospheric deflection even with standard mantle flow laws. Flexural stresses are extensional in the deeper part of the lithosphere below a linear island load (i.e. horizontal stresses orthogonal to the line load are lower than vertical stresses). Magma can accommodate lithospheric extension at smaller stress differences than brittle and ductile rock yielding. Dikes opening parallel to an island chain would allow easier downflexing than a continuous plate, but wound not produce a freely broken plate. The extensional stress needed to open dikes at depth depends on the density contrast between magma and lithosphere, assuming magma has an open pathway to the surface. For a uniform lithospheric density ρL and magma density ρM the stress difference to allow dikes to accommodate extension is: Δσxx (z) = g z (ρM - gρL), where g is the acceleration of gravity and z is depth below the surface. For reasonable density values (i.e.

  14. Constraining the hydration of the subducting Nazca plate beneath Northern Chile using subduction zone guided waves

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garth, Tom; Rietbrock, Andreas

    2017-09-01

    Guided wave dispersion is observed from earthquakes at 180-280 km depth recorded at stations in the fore-arc of Northern Chile, where the 44 Ma Nazca plate subducts beneath South America. Characteristic P-wave dispersion is observed at several stations in the Chilean fore-arc with high frequency energy (>5 Hz) arriving up to 3 s after low frequency (accounted for if dipping low velocity fault zones are included within the subducting lithospheric mantle. A grid search over possible LVL and faults zone parameters (width, velocity contrast and separation distance) was carried out to constrain the best fitting model parameters. Our results imply that fault zone structures of 0.5-1.0 km thickness, and 5-10 km spacing, consistent with observations at the outer rise are present within the subducted slab at intermediate depths. We propose that these low velocity fault zone structures represent the hydrated structure within the lithospheric mantle. They may be formed initially by normal faults at the outer rise, which act as a pathway for fluids to penetrate the deeper slab due to the bending and unbending stresses within the subducting plate. Our observations suggest that the lithospheric mantle is 5-15% serpentinised, and therefore may transport approximately 13-42 Tg/Myr of water per meter of arc. The guided wave observations also suggest that a thin LVL (∼1 km thick) interpreted as un-eclogitised subducted oceanic crust persists to depths of at least 220 km. Comparison of the inferred seismic velocities with those predicted for various MORB assemblages suggest that this thin LVL may be accounted for by low velocity lawsonite-bearing assemblages, suggesting that some mineral-bound water within the oceanic crust may be transported well beyond the volcanic arc. While older subducting slabs may carry more water per metre of arc, approximately one third of the oceanic material subducted globally is of a similar age to the Nazca plate. This suggests that subducting oceanic

  15. Supra-subduction and mid-ocean ridge peridotites from the Piranshahr area, NW Iran

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hajialioghli, Robab; Moazzen, Mohssen

    2014-11-01

    The Piranshahr metaperidotites in the northwestern end of the Zagros orogen were emplaced following the closure of the Neotethys ocean. The ophiolitic rocks were emplaced onto the passive margin of the northern edge of the Arabian plate as a result of northeastward subduction and subsequent accretion of the continental fragments. The metaperidotites have compositions ranging from low-clinopyroxene lherzolite to harzburgite and dunite. They are mantle residues with distinct geochemical signatures of both mid-ocean ridge and supra subduction zone (SSZ) affinities. The abyssal peridotites are characterized by high Al2O3 and Cr2O3 contents and low Mg-number in pyroxenes. The Cr-number in the coexisting spinel is also low. The SSZ mantle peridotites are characterized by low Al2O3 contents in pyroxenes as well as low Al2O3 and high Cr-number in spinel. Mineral chemical data indicate that the MOR- and SSZ-type peridotites are the residues from ∼15-20% and ∼30-35% of mantle melting, respectively. Considering petrography, mineralogy and textural evidence, the petrological history of the Piranshahr metaperidotites can be interpreted in three stages: mantle stable stage, serpentinization and metamorphism. The temperature conditions in the mantle are estimated using the Ca-in-orthopyroxene thermometer as 1210 ± 26 °C. The rocks have experienced serpentinization. Based on the textural observations, olivine and pyroxene transformed into lizardite and/or chrysotile with pseudomorphic textures at temperatures below 300 °C during the initial stage of serpentinization. Subsequent orogenic metamorphism affected the rocks at temperatures lower than 600 °C under lower-amphibolite facies metamorphism.

  16. Noble gases recycled into the mantle through cold subduction zones

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smye, Andrew J.; Jackson, Colin R. M.; Konrad-Schmolke, Matthias; Hesse, Marc A.; Parman, Steve W.; Shuster, David L.; Ballentine, Chris J.

    2017-08-01

    Subduction of hydrous and carbonated oceanic lithosphere replenishes the mantle volatile inventory. Substantial uncertainties exist on the magnitudes of the recycled volatile fluxes and it is unclear whether Earth surface reservoirs are undergoing net-loss or net-gain of H2O and CO2. Here, we use noble gases as tracers for deep volatile cycling. Specifically, we construct and apply a kinetic model to estimate the effect of subduction zone metamorphism on the elemental composition of noble gases in amphibole - a common constituent of altered oceanic crust. We show that progressive dehydration of the slab leads to the extraction of noble gases, linking noble gas recycling to H2O. Noble gases are strongly fractionated within hot subduction zones, whereas minimal fractionation occurs along colder subduction geotherms. In the context of our modelling, this implies that the mantle heavy noble gas inventory is dominated by the injection of noble gases through cold subduction zones. For cold subduction zones, we estimate a present-day bulk recycling efficiency, past the depth of amphibole breakdown, of 5-35% and 60-80% for 36Ar and H2O bound within oceanic crust, respectively. Given that hotter subduction dominates over geologic history, this result highlights the importance of cooler subduction zones in regassing the mantle and in affecting the modern volatile budget of Earth's interior.

  17. SPECIFIC FEATURES OF DEFORMATION OF THE CONTINENTAL AND OCEANIC LITHOSPHERE AS A RESULT OF THE EARTH CORE NORTHERN DRIFT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mikhail A. Goncharov

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Drifting and submeridional compression of the continental and oceanic lithosphere, both with the northward vector (Figure 1 are revealed at the background of various directions of horizontal displacement combined with deformations of horizontal extension, compression and shear of the lithosphere (Figures 7–14. Among various structural forms and their paragenezises, indicators of such compression, the north vergence thrusts play the leading role (Figures 15–17, 19, and 22–24. This process was discontinuous, manifested discretely in time, and superimposed on processes of collisional orogenesis and platform deformations of the continental lithosphere and accretion of the oceanic lithosphere in spreading zones. Three main stages of submeridional compression of the oceanic lithosphere are distinguished as follows: Late Jurassic-Late Cretaceous, Late Miocene, and the contemporary stages.Based on the concept of balanced tectonic flow in the Earth’s body, a model of meridional convection (Figure 25 is proposed. In this case, meridional convection is considered as an integral element of the overglobal convective geodynamic system of the largest-scale rank, which also includes the western component of the lithosphere drift (Figure 6 and the Earth’s ‘wrenching’. At the background of this system, geodynamic systems of smaller scale ranks are functioning (Table 1; Figures 2, and 3. The latters are responsible for the periodic creation and break-up of supercontinents, plate tectonics and regional geodynamical processes; they also produce the ‘structural background’, in the presence of which it is challenging to reveal the above mentioned submeridional compression structures. Formation of such structures is caused by the upper horizontal flow of meridional convection.Meridional convection occurs due to drifting of the Earth core towards the North Pole (which is detected by a number of independent methods and resistance of the mantle to

  18. Amphibious Shear Velocity Structure of the Cascadia Subduction Zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janiszewski, H. A.; Gaherty, J. B.; Abers, G. A.; Gao, H.

    2017-12-01

    The amphibious Cascadia Initiative crosses the coastline of the Cascadia subduction zone (CSZ) deploying seismometers from the Juan de Fuca ridge offshore to beyond the volcanic arc onshore. This allows unprecedented seismic imaging of the CSZ, enabling examination of both the evolution of the Juan de Fuca plate prior to and during subduction as well as the along strike variability of the subduction system. Here we present new results from an amphibious shear velocity model for the crust and upper mantle across the Cascadia subduction zone. The primary data used in this inversion are surface-wave phase velocities derived from ambient-noise Rayleigh-wave data in the 10 - 20 s period band, and teleseismic earthquake Rayleigh wave phase velocities in the 20 - 160 s period band. Phase velocity maps from these data reflect major tectonic structures including the transition from oceanic to continental lithosphere, Juan de Fuca lithosphere that is faster than observations in the Pacific for oceanic crust of its age, slow velocities associated with the accretionary prism, the front of the fast subducting slab, and the Cascades volcanic arc which is associated with slower velocities in the south than in the north. Crustal structures are constrained by receiver functions in the offshore forearc and onshore regions, and by active source constraints on the Juan de Fuca plate prior to subduction. The shear-wave velocities are interpreted in their relationships to temperature, presence of melt or hydrous alteration, and compositional variation of the CSZ.

  19. Tearing, segmentation, and backstepping of subduction in the Aegean: New insights from seismicity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bocchini, G. M.; Brüstle, A.; Becker, D.; Meier, T.; van Keken, P. E.; Ruscic, M.; Papadopoulos, G. A.; Rische, M.; Friederich, W.

    2018-06-01

    This study revisits subduction processes at the Hellenic Subduction Zone (HSZ) including tearing, segmentation, and backstepping, by refining the geometry of the Nubian slab down to 150-180 km depth using well-located hypocentres from global and local seismicity catalogues. At the western termination of the HSZ, the Kefalonia Transform Fault marks the transition between oceanic and continental lithosphere subducting to the south and to the north of it, respectively. A discontinuity is suggested to exist between the two slabs at shallow depths. The Kefalonia Transform Fault is interpreted as an active Subduction-Transform-Edge-Propagator-fault formed as consequence of faster trench retreat induced by the subduction of oceanic lithosphere to the south of it. A model reconstructing the evolution of the subduction system in the area of Peloponnese since 34 Ma, involving the backstepping of the subduction to the back-side of Adria, provides seismological evidence that supports the single-slab model for the HSZ and suggests the correlation between the downdip limit of the seismicity to the amount of subducted oceanic lithosphere. In the area of Rhodes, earthquake hypocentres indicate the presence of a NW dipping subducting slab that rules out the presence of a NE-SW striking Subduction-Transform-Edge-Propagator-fault in the Pliny-Strabo trenches region. Earthquake hypocentres also allow refining the slab tear beneath southwestern Anatolia down to 150-180 km depth. Furthermore, the distribution of microseismicity shows a first-order slab segmentation in the region between Crete and Karpathos, with a less steep and laterally wider slab segment to the west and a steeper and narrower slab segment to the east. Thermal models indicate the presence of a colder slab beneath the southeastern Aegean that leads to deepening of the intermediate-depth seismicity. Slab segmentation affects the upper plate deformation that is stronger above the eastern slab segment and the seismicity

  20. The electrical conductivity of the upper mantle and lithosphere from satellite magnetic signal due to ocean tidal flow

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schnepf, N. R.; Kuvshinov, A. V.; Grayver, A.; Sabaka, T. J.; Olsen, N.

    2015-12-01

    Global electromagnetic (EM) studies provide information on mantle electrical conductivity with the ultimate aim of understanding the composition, structure, and dynamics of Earth's interior. There is great much interest in mapping the global conductivity of the lithosphere and upper mantle (i.e., depths of 10-400 km) because recent laboratory experiments demonstrate that the electrical conductivity of minerals in these regions are greatly affected by small amounts of water or by partial melt. For decades, studies of lithospheric/mantle conductivity were based on interpretation of magnetic data from a global network of observatories. The recent expansion in magnetic data from low-Earth orbiting satellite missions (Ørsted, CHAMP, SAC-C, and Swarm) has led to a rising interest in probing Earth from space. The largest benefit of using satellite data is much improved spatial coverage. Additionally, and in contrast to ground-based data, satellite data are overall uniform and very high quality. Probing the conductivity of the lithosphere and upper mantle requires EM variations with periods of a few hours. This is a challenging period range for global EM studies since the ionospheric (Sq) source dominates these periods and has a much more complex spatial structure compared to the magnetospheric ring current. Moreover, satellite-based EM induction studies in principle cannot use Sq data since the satellites fly above the Sq source causing the signals to be seen by the satellite as a purely internal source, thus precluding the separation of satellite Sq signals into internal and external parts. Lastly, magnetospheric and ionospheric sources interact inductively with Earth's conducting interior. Fortunately, there exists an alternative EM source in the Sq period range: electric currents generated by oceanic tides. Tides instead interact galvanically with the lithosphere (i.e. by direct coupling of the source currents in the ocean with the underlying substrate), enabling

  1. Oceanization of the lithospheric mantle: the study case of the spinel peridotites from Monte Maggiore (Corsica, France).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piccardo, G. B.

    2009-04-01

    (Rampone, 2004; Rampone et al., 2008; 2009) provide reliable geochronological informations (i.e. Sm-Nd cpx-plg-wr isochron ages and Sm-Nd model ages) and evidence that the whole mafic and ultramafic rocks show an overall Sm/Nd isotopic homogeneity. Cpx-plg-wr data from gabbroic dykes define internal isochrones yielding Jurassic ages (162+/-10 Ma and 159+/-15 Ma, respectively). The plg-cpx(-wr) isochrons for impregnated plagioclase peridotites yields age of 155+/-6 Ma. The initial ɛNd values (8.9-9.7) are indicative of a MORB affinity. Calculated DM model ages for both spinel and plagioclase peridotites point to a Late Jurassic age (150 Ma). Isotope ratios of cpx from spinel and plagioclase peridotites conform to the linear array defined by overall gabbroic rocks. The isotopic evidence from the melt-percolated, reactive and impregnated peridotites indicates that the pristine lithospheric mantle protoliths were isotopically homogenized by the melt-rock interaction during percolation/impregnation processes which erased any pre-existing isotopic signature. Moreover, the overall Sm/Nd isotopic homogeneity indicates that the asthenospheric mantle sources of the infiltrating melts were isotopically homogeneous. Accordingly, it is plausible that percolation and intrusion were operated by similar and coeval Late Jurassic MORB-type melts. In conclusion, petrologic and isotopic data allow to recognize that the extending sub-continental lithospheric mantle was infiltrated by Late Jurassic MORB melts, formed by asthenospheric decompression-induced partial melting during continental extension and rifting. Melt-peridotite interaction modified the compositional features of the lithospheric mantle and caused its isotopic resetting. Accordingly, the sub-continental lithospheric mantle underwent an "oceanization" process (i.e. isotope resetting to "oceanic" MORB signatures) during Late Jurassic times operated by asthenospheric MORB melts. Depending on the melt composition, the lithospheric

  2. Continental basalts record the crust-mantle interaction in oceanic subduction channel: A geochemical case study from eastern China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Zheng; Zheng, Yong-Fei

    2017-09-01

    Continental basalts, erupted in either flood or rift mode, usually show oceanic island basalts (OIB)-like geochemical compositions. Although their depletion in Sr-Nd isotope compositions is normally ascribed to contributions from the asthenospheric mantle, their enrichment in large ion lithophile elements (LILE) and light rare earth elements (LREE) is generally associated with variable enrichments in the Sr-Nd isotope compositions. This indicates significant contributions from crustal components such as igneous oceanic crust, lower continental crust and seafloor sediment. Nevertheless, these crustal components were not incorporated into the mantle sources of continental basalts in the form of solidus rocks. Instead they were processed into metasomatic agents through low-degree partial melting in order to have the geochemical fractionation of the largest extent to achieve the enrichment of LILE and LREE in the metasomatic agents. Therefore, the mantle sources of continental basalts were generated by metasomatic reaction of the depleted mid-ocean ridge basalts (MORB) mantle with hydrous felsic melts. Nevertheless, mass balance considerations indicate differential contributions from the mantle and crustal components to the basalts. While the depleted MORB mantle predominates the budget of major elements, the crustal components predominate the budget of melt-mobile incompatible trace elements and their pertinent radiogenic isotopes. These considerations are verified by model calculations that are composed of four steps in an ancient oceanic subduction channel: (1) dehydration of the subducting crustal rocks at subarc depths, (2) anataxis of the dehydrated rocks at postarc depths, (3) metasomatic reaction of the depleted MORB mantle peridotite with the felsic melts to generate ultramafic metasomatites in the lower part of the mantle wedge, and (4) partial melting of the metasomatites for basaltic magmatism. The composition of metasomatites is quantitatively dictated by

  3. Slab melting beneath the Cascades Arc driven by dehydration of altered oceanic peridotite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walowski, Kristina J; Wallace, Paul J.; Hauri, E.H.; Wada, I.; Clynne, Michael A.

    2015-01-01

    Water is returned to Earth’s interior at subduction zones. However, the processes and pathways by which water leaves the subducting plate and causes melting beneath volcanic arcs are complex; the source of the water—subducting sediment, altered oceanic crust, or hydrated mantle in the downgoing plate—is debated; and the role of slab temperature is unclear. Here we analyse the hydrogen-isotope and trace-element signature of melt inclusions in ash samples from the Cascade Arc, where young, hot lithosphere subducts. Comparing these data with published analyses, we find that fluids in the Cascade magmas are sourced from deeper parts of the subducting slab—hydrated mantle peridotite in the slab interior—compared with fluids in magmas from the Marianas Arc, where older, colder lithosphere subducts. We use geodynamic modelling to show that, in the hotter subduction zone, the upper crust of the subducting slab rapidly dehydrates at shallow depths. With continued subduction, fluids released from the deeper plate interior migrate into the dehydrated parts, causing those to melt. These melts in turn migrate into the overlying mantle wedge, where they trigger further melting. Our results provide a physical model to explain melting of the subducted plate and mass transfer from the slab to the mantle beneath arcs where relatively young oceanic lithosphere is subducted.

  4. Large volume recycling of oceanic lithosphere over short time scales: geochemical constraints from the Caribbean Large Igneous Province

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hauff, F.; Hoernle, K.; Tilton, G.; Graham, D. W.; Kerr, A. C.

    2000-01-01

    Oceanic flood basalts are poorly understood, short-term expressions of highly increased heat flux and mass flow within the convecting mantle. The uniqueness of the Caribbean Large Igneous Province (CLIP, 92-74 Ma) with respect to other Cretaceous oceanic plateaus is its extensive sub-aerial exposures, providing an excellent basis to investigate the temporal and compositional relationships within a starting plume head. We present major element, trace element and initial Sr-Nd-Pb isotope composition of 40 extrusive rocks from the Caribbean Plateau, including onland sections in Costa Rica, Colombia and Curaçao as well as DSDP Sites in the Central Caribbean. Even though the lavas were erupted over an area of ˜3×10 6 km 2, the majority have strikingly uniform incompatible element patterns (La/Yb=0.96±0.16, n=64 out of 79 samples, 2σ) and initial Nd-Pb isotopic compositions (e.g. 143Nd/ 144Nd in=0.51291±3, ɛNdi=7.3±0.6, 206Pb/ 204Pb in=18.86±0.12, n=54 out of 66, 2σ). Lavas with endmember compositions have only been sampled at the DSDP Sites, Gorgona Island (Colombia) and the 65-60 Ma accreted Quepos and Osa igneous complexes (Costa Rica) of the subsequent hotspot track. Despite the relatively uniform composition of most lavas, linear correlations exist between isotope ratios and between isotope and highly incompatible trace element ratios. The Sr-Nd-Pb isotope and trace element signatures of the chemically enriched lavas are compatible with derivation from recycled oceanic crust, while the depleted lavas are derived from a highly residual source. This source could represent either oceanic lithospheric mantle left after ocean crust formation or gabbros with interlayered ultramafic cumulates of the lower oceanic crust. High 3He/ 4He in olivines of enriched picrites at Quepos are ˜12 times higher than the atmospheric ratio suggesting that the enriched component may have once resided in the lower mantle. Evaluation of the Sm-Nd and U-Pb isotope systematics on

  5. Structural context and variation of ocean plate stratigraphy, Franciscan Complex, California: insight into mélange origins and subduction-accretion processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wakabayashi, John

    2017-12-01

    The transfer (accretion) of materials from a subducting oceanic plate to a subduction-accretionary complex has produced rock assemblages recording the history of the subducted oceanic plate from formation to arrival at the trench. These rock assemblages, comprising oceanic igneous rocks progressively overlain by pelagic sedimentary rocks (chert and/or limestone) and trench-fill clastic sedimentary rocks (mostly sandstone, shale/mudstone), have been called ocean plate stratigraphy (OPS). During accretion of OPS, megathrust slip is accommodated by imbricate faults and penetrative strain, shortening the unit and leading to tectonic repetition of the OPS sequence, whereas OPS accreted at different times are separated by non-accretionary megathrust horizons. The Franciscan subduction complex of California accreted episodically over a period of over 150 million years and incorporated OPS units with a variety of characteristics separated by non-accretionary megathrust horizons. Most Franciscan OPS comprises MORB (mid-ocean-ridge basalt) progressively overlain by chert and trench-fill clastic sedimentary rocks that are composed of variable proportions of turbidites and siliciclastic and serpentinite-matrix olistostromes (sedimentary mélanges). Volumetrically, the trench-fill component predominates in most Franciscan OPS, but some units have a significant component of igneous and pelagic rocks. Ocean island basalt (OIB) overlain by limestone is less common than MORB-chert assemblages, as are abyssal serpentinized peridotite slabs. The earliest accreted OPS comprises metabasite of supra-subduction zone affinity imbricated with smaller amounts of metaultramafic rocks and metachert, but lacking a clastic component. Most deformation of Franciscan OPS is localized along discrete faults rather than being distributed in the form of penetrative strain. This deformation locally results in block-in-matrix tectonic mélanges, in contrast to the sedimentary mélanges making up part of

  6. Metallogeny of subduction zones

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sorokhtin N. O.

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available The paper deals with the multistage mechanism of the Earth's crust enrichment in ore elements in underthrust zones. The processes of metamorphism and the formation of hydrothermal solutions at pulling of the watered oceanic lithospheric plate into the subduction zone have been described. Some physical and chemical transformation regularities of structural-material complexes in these areas and mechanisms of the formation of ore deposits have been discussed. Spatio-temporal patterns of the localization of a number of endogenetic and exogenetic deposits have been described using metallogeny of the Ural and the Verkhoyansk-Kolyma Fold Belts as an example. It has been shown that in nature there are several effective mechanisms of the enrichment of the crust in ore minerals. One of them is the process of pulling into subduction zone of metalliferous sediments and ferromanganese crusts as well as seabed nodules, their metamorphic transformation, partial melting and transition of ore components into magmatic melts and mineralized fluids. In the future this leads to the release of ore material by magmas and hydrothermal solutions into the folded formations of island-arc and Andean types and the formation of igneous, metasomatic and hydrothermal deposits. Another, yet no less powerful natural mechanism of a conveyor enrichment of the crust in ore elements is the process of destruction and sedimentation of mineral deposits formed in the folded areas as well as the formation of placers and their transfer to the marginal parts of the continent. Later, during the collision of active and passive margins of two lithospheric plates, such as the collision of the Kolyma Massif with the eastern part of the Siberian craton in the middle of the Mesozoic there was a thrusting of a younger lithospheric plate over a more ancient one. As a result, the sedimentary sequences of the passive margin of the Siberian plate were submerged and partially melted by the basic magmas

  7. The continental lithosphere

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Artemieva, Irina

    2009-01-01

    The goal of the present study is to extract non-thermal signal from seismic tomography models in order to distinguish compositional variations in the continental lithosphere and to examine if geochemical and petrologic constraints on global-scale compositional variations in the mantle...... are consistent with modern geophysical data. In the lithospheric mantle of the continents, seismic velocity variations of a non-thermal origin (calculated from global Vs seismic tomography data [Grand S.P., 2002. Mantle shear-wave tomography and the fate of subducted slabs. Philosophical Transactions...... and evolution of Precambrian lithosphere: A global study. Journal of Geophysical Research 106, 16387–16414.] show strong correlation with tectono-thermal ages and with regional variations in lithospheric thickness constrained by surface heat flow data and seismic velocities. In agreement with xenolith data...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-06-01

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

  9. Magnesium Isotopic Evidence for Ancient Subducted Oceanic Crust in LOMU-Like Potassium-Rich Volcanic Rocks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Yang; Teng, Fang-Zhen; Ying, Ji-Feng; Su, Ben-Xun; Hu, Yan; Fan, Qi-Cheng; Zhou, Xin-Hua

    2017-10-01

    To evaluate the role of subducted oceanic crust in the genesis of potassium-rich magmas, we report high-precision Mg isotopic data for a set of Cenozoic volcanic rocks from Northeast China. These rocks overall are lighter in Mg isotopic composition than the normal mantle and display considerable Mg isotopic variations, with δ26Mg ranging from -0.61 to -0.23. The covariation of δ26Mg with TiO2 in these rocks suggests that their light Mg isotopic compositions were derived from recycled oceanic crust in the form of carbonated eclogite in the source region. The strong correlations between δ26Mg and (Gd/Yb)N ratio as well as Sr-Pb isotopes further indicate a multicomponent and multistage origin of these rocks. Magnesium isotopes may thus be used as a novel tracer of recycled oceanic crust in the source region of mantle-derived magmas.

  10. A viscoplastic shear-zone model for episodic slow slip events in oceanic subduction zones

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, A.; Meng, L.

    2016-12-01

    Episodic slow slip events occur widely along oceanic subduction zones at the brittle-ductile transition depths ( 20-50 km). Although efforts have been devoted to unravel their mechanical origins, it remains unclear about the physical controls on the wide range of their recurrence intervals and slip durations. In this study we present a simple mechanical model that attempts to account for the observed temporal evolution of slow slip events. In our model we assume that slow slip events occur in a viscoplastic shear zone (i.e., Bingham material), which has an upper static and a lower dynamic plastic yield strength. We further assume that the hanging wall deformation is approximated as an elastic spring. We envision the shear zone to be initially locked during forward/landward motion but is subsequently unlocked when the elastic and gravity-induced stress exceeds the static yield strength of the shear zone. This leads to backward/trenchward motion damped by viscous shear-zone deformation. As the elastic spring progressively loosens, the hanging wall velocity evolves with time and the viscous shear stress eventually reaches the dynamic yield strength. This is followed by the termination of the trenchward motion when the elastic stress is balanced by the dynamic yield strength of the shear zone and the gravity. In order to account for the zig-saw slip-history pattern of typical repeated slow slip events, we assume that the shear zone progressively strengthens after each slow slip cycle, possibly caused by dilatancy as commonly assumed or by progressive fault healing through solution-transport mechanisms. We quantify our conceptual model by obtaining simple analytical solutions. Our model results suggest that the duration of the landward motion increases with the down-dip length and the static yield strength of the shear zone, but decreases with the ambient loading velocity and the elastic modulus of the hanging wall. The duration of the backward/trenchward motion depends

  11. Metamorphic Perspectives of Subduction Zone Volatiles Cycling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bebout, G. E.

    2008-12-01

    Field study of HP/UHP metamorphic rocks provides "ground-truthing" for experimental and theoretical petrologic studies estimating extents of deep volatiles subduction, and provides information regarding devolatilization and deep subduction-zone fluid flow that can be used to reconcile estimates of subduction inputs and arc volcanic outputs for volatiles such as H2O, N, and C. Considerable attention has been paid to H2O subduction in various bulk compositions, and, based on calculated phase assemblages, it is thought that a large fraction of the initially structurally bound H2O is subducted to, and beyond, subarc regions in most modern subduction zones (Hacker, 2008, G-cubed). Field studies of HP/UHP mafic and sedimentary rocks demonstrate the impressive retention of volatiles (and fluid-mobile elements) to depths approaching those beneath arcs. At the slab-mantle interface, high-variance lithologies containing hydrous phases such as mica, amphibole, talc, and chlorite could further stabilize H2O to great depth. Trench hydration in sub-crustal parts of oceanic lithosphere could profoundly increase subduction inputs of particularly H2O, and massive flux of H2O-rich fluids from these regions into the slab-mantle interface could lead to extensive metasomatism. Consideration of sedimentary N concentrations and δ15N at ODP Site 1039 (Li and Bebout, 2005, JGR), together with estimates of the N concentration of subducting altered oceanic crust (AOC), indicates that ~42% of the N subducting beneath Nicaragua is returned in the corresponding volcanic arc (Elkins et al., 2006, GCA). Study of N in HP/UHP sedimentary and basaltic rocks indicates that much of the N initially subducted in these lithologies would be retained to depths approaching 100 km and thus available for addition to arcs. The more altered upper part of subducting oceanic crust most likely to contribute to arcs has sediment-like δ15NAir (0 to +10 per mil; Li et al., 2007, GCA), and study of HP/UHP eclogites

  12. Subduction of the Tethys Oceans reconstructed from plate kinematics and mantle tomography

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hafkenscheid, Edith

    2004-01-01

    This thesis is concerned with the large-scale history of subduction within the Tethyan region, the Alpine-Himalayan mountain chain that stretches from the Mediterranean to the Indonesian archipelago. We investigate whether we can contribute to a better understanding of the Tethyan evolution by

  13. Reconciling plate kinematic and seismic estimates of lithospheric convergence in the central Indian Ocean

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Bull, J.M.; DeMets, C.; Krishna, K.S.; Sanderson, D.J.; Merkouriev, S.

    The far-field signature of the India-Asia collision and history of uplift in Tibet are recorded by sediment input into the Indian Ocean and the strain accumulation history across the diffuse plate boundary between the Indian and Capricorn plates. We...

  14. Seismic imaging of lithospheric discontinuities and continental evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bostock, M. G.

    1999-09-01

    Discontinuities in physical properties within the continental lithosphere reflect a range of processes that have contributed to craton stabilization and evolution. A survey of recent seismological studies concerning lithospheric discontinuities is made in an attempt to document their essential characteristics. Results from long-period seismology are inconsistent with the presence of continuous, laterally invariant, isotropic boundaries within the upper mantle at the global scale. At regional scales, two well-defined interfaces termed H (˜60 km depth) and L (˜200 km depth) of continental affinity are identified, with the latter boundary generally exhibiting an anisotropic character. Long-range refraction profiles are frequently characterized by subcontinental mantle that exhibits a complex stratification within the top 200 km. The shallow layering of this package can behave as an imperfect waveguide giving rise to the so-called teleseismic Pn phase, while the L-discontinuity may define its lower base as the culmination of a low velocity zone. High-resolution, seismic reflection profiling provides sufficient detail in a number of cases to document the merging of mantle interfaces into lower continental crust below former collisional sutures and magmatic arcs, thus unambiguously identifying some lithospheric discontinuities with thrust faults and subducted oceanic lithosphere. Collectively, these and other seismic observations point to a continental lithosphere whose internal structure is dominated by a laterally variable, subhorizontal layering. This stratigraphy appears to be more pronounced at shallower lithospheric levels, includes dense, anisotropic layers of order 10 km in thickness, and exhibits horizontal correlation lengths comparable to the lateral dimensions of overlying crustal blocks. A model of craton evolution which relies on shallow subduction as a principal agent of craton stabilization is shown to be broadly compatible with these characteristics.

  15. Diamond Growth in the Subduction Factory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bureau, H.; Frost, D. J.; Bolfan-Casanova, N.; Leroy, C.; Estève, I.

    2014-12-01

    Natural diamonds are fabulous probes of the deep Earth Interior. They are the evidence of the deep storage of volatile elements, carbon at first, but also hydrogen and chlorine trapped as hydrous fluids in inclusions. The study of diamond growth processes in the lithosphere and mantle helps for our understanding of volatile elements cycling between deep reservoirs. We know now that inclusion-bearing diamonds similar to diamonds found in nature (i.e. polycrystalline, fibrous and coated diamonds) can grow in hydrous fluids or melts (Bureau et al., GCA 77, 202-214, 2012). Therefore, we propose that the best environment to promote such diamonds is the subduction factory, where highly hydrous fluids or melts are present. When oceanic plates are subducted in the lithosphere, they carry an oceanic crust soaked with seawater. While the slabs are traveling en route to the mantle, dehydration processes generate saline fluids highly concentrated in NaCl. In the present study we have experimentally shown that diamonds can grow from the saline fluids (up to 30 g/l NaCl in water) generated in subducted slabs. We have performed multi-anvil press experiments at 6-7 GPa and from 1300 to 1400°C during 6:00 hours to 30:00 hours. We observed large areas of new diamond grown in epitaxy on pure diamond seeds in salty hydrous carbonated melts, forming coated gems. The new rims are containing multi-component primary inclusions. Detailed characterizations of the diamonds and their inclusions have been performed and will be presented. These experimental results suggest that multi-component salty fluids of supercritical nature migrate with the slabs, down to the deep mantle. Such fluids may insure the first stage of the deep Earth's volatiles cycling (C, H, halogen elements) en route to the transition zone and the lower mantle. We suggest that the subduction factory may also be a diamond factory.

  16. Heterogeneity of the North Atlantic oceanic lithosphere based on integrated analysis of GOCE satellite gravity and geological data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barantseva, Olga; Artemieva, Irina; Thybo, Hans; Herceg, Matija

    2015-04-01

    constrained by numerous published seismic profiles and potential-field models across the Norwegian off-shore crust (e.g. Breivik et al., 2005, 2007). The results demonstrate the presence of strong gravity and density heterogeneity of the upper mantle in the North Atlantic region. In particular, there is a sharp contrast at the continent-ocean transition, which also allows for recognising mantle gravity anomalies associated with continental fragments and with anomalous oceanic lithosphere.

  17. Reconstructing the paleogeography and subduction geodynamics of Greater India: how to apply Ockham's Razor?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Hinsbergen, D. J. J.; Li, S.; Lippert, P. C.; Huang, W.; Advokaat, E. L.; Spakman, W.

    2017-12-01

    -collisional continental and young Greater India basin lithosphere did not, inciting the rapid India-Asia convergence deceleration 8 Myr after collision. Subsequent absolute northward trench migration and slab overturning terminated Gangdese arc activity despite ongoing oceanic subduction.

  18. Investigating the 3-D Subduction Initiation Processes at Transform Faults and Passive Margins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, H.; Leng, W.

    2017-12-01

    Studying the processes of subduction initiation is a key for understanding the Wilson cycle and improving the theory of plate tectonics. Previous studies investigated subduction initiation with geological synthesis and geodynamic modeling methods, discovering that subduction intends to initiate at the transform faults close to oceanic arcs, and that its evolutionary processes and surface volcanic expressions are controlled by plate strength. However, these studies are mainly conducted with 2-D models, which cannot deal with lateral heterogeneities of crustal thickness and strength along the plate interfaces. Here we extend the 2-D model to a 3-D parallel subduction model with high computational efficiency. With the new model, we study the dynamic controlling factors, morphology evolutionary processes and surface expressions for subduction initiation with lateral heterogeneities of material properties along transform faults and passive margins. We find that lateral lithospheric heterogeneities control the starting point of the subduction initiation along the newly formed trenches and the propagation speed for the trench formation. New subduction tends to firstly initiate at the property changing point along the transform faults or passive margins. Such finds may be applied to explain the formation process of the Izu-Bonin-Mariana (IBM) subduction zone in the western Pacific and the Scotia subduction zone at the south end of the South America. Our results enhance our understanding for the formation of new trenches and help to provide geodynamic modeling explanations for the observed remnant slabs in the upper mantle and the surface volcanic expressions.

  19. Plume-stagnant slab-lithosphere interactions: Origin of the late Cenozoic intra-plate basalts on the East Eurasia margin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kimura, Jun-Ichi; Sakuyama, Tetsuya; Miyazaki, Takashi; Vaglarov, Bogdan S.; Fukao, Yoshio; Stern, Robert J.

    2018-02-01

    Intra-plate basalts of 35-0 Ma in East Eurasia formed in a broad backarc region above the stagnant Pacific Plate slab in the mantle transition zone. These basalts show regional-scale variations in Nd-Hf isotopes. The basalts with the most radiogenic Nd-Hf center on the Shandong Peninsula with intermediate Nd-Hf at Hainan and Datong. The least radiogenic basalts occur in the perimeters underlain by the thick continental lithosphere. Shandong basalts possess isotopic signatures of the young igneous oceanic crust of the subducted Pacific Plate. Hainan and Datong basalts have isotopic signatures of recycled subduction materials with billions of years of storage in the mantle. The perimeter basalts have isotopic signatures similar to pyroxenite xenoliths from the subcontinental lithospheric mantle beneath East Eurasia. Hainan basalts exhibit the highest mantle potential temperature (Tp), while the Shandong basalts have the lowest Tp. We infer that a deep high-Tp plume interacted with the subducted Pacific Plate slab in the mantle transition zone to form a local low-Tp plume by entraining colder igneous oceanic lithosphere. We infer that the subducted Izanagi Plate slab, once a part of the Pacific Plate mosaic, broke off from the Pacific Plate slab at 35 Ma to sink into the lower mantle. The sinking Izanagi slab triggered the plume that interacted with the stagnant Pacific slab and caused subcontinental lithospheric melting. This coincided with formation of the western Pacific backarc marginal basins due to Pacific Plate slab rollback and stagnation.

  20. Segmentation of Slow Slip Events in South Central Alaska Possibly Controlled by a Subducted Oceanic Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Haotian; Wei, Meng; Li, Duo; Liu, Yajing; Kim, YoungHee; Zhou, Shiyong

    2018-01-01

    Recent GPS observations show that slow slip events in south central Alaska are segmented along strike. Here we review several mechanisms that might contribute to this segmentation and focus on two: along-strike variation of slab geometry and effective normal stress. We then test them by running numerical simulations in the framework of rate-and-state friction with a nonplanar fault geometry. Results show that the segmentation is most likely related to the along-strike variation of the effective normal stress on the fault plane caused by the Yakutat Plateau. The Yakutat Plateau could affect the effective normal stress by either lowering the pore pressure in Upper Cook Inlet due to less fluids release or increasing the normal stress due to the extra buoyancy caused by the subducted Yakutat Plateau. We prefer the latter explanation because it is consistent with the relative amplitudes of the effective normal stress in Upper and Lower Cook Inlet and there is very little along-strike variation in Vp/Vs ratio in the fault zone from receiver function analysis. However, we cannot exclude the possibility that the difference in effective normal stress results from along-strike variation of pore pressure due to the uncertainties in the Vp/Vs estimates. Our work implies that a structural anomaly can have a long-lived effect on the subduction zone slip behavior and might be a driving factor on along-strike segmentation of slow slip events.

  1. Updated Reference Model for Heat Generation in the Lithosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wipperfurth, S. A.; Sramek, O.; Roskovec, B.; Mantovani, F.; McDonough, W. F.

    2017-12-01

    Models integrating geophysics and geochemistry allow for characterization of the Earth's heat budget and geochemical evolution. Global lithospheric geophysical models are now constrained by surface and body wave data and are classified into several unique tectonic types. Global lithospheric geochemical models have evolved from petrological characterization of layers to a combination of petrologic and seismic constraints. Because of these advances regarding our knowledge of the lithosphere, it is necessary to create an updated chemical and physical reference model. We are developing a global lithospheric reference model based on LITHO1.0 (segmented into 1°lon x 1°lat x 9-layers) and seismological-geochemical relationships. Uncertainty assignments and correlations are assessed for its physical attributes, including layer thickness, Vp and Vs, and density. This approach yields uncertainties for the masses of the crust and lithospheric mantle. Heat producing element abundances (HPE: U, Th, and K) are ascribed to each volume element. These chemical attributes are based upon the composition of subducting sediment (sediment layers), composition of surface rocks (upper crust), a combination of petrologic and seismic correlations (middle and lower crust), and a compilation of xenolith data (lithospheric mantle). The HPE abundances are correlated within each voxel, but not vertically between layers. Efforts to provide correlation of abundances horizontally between each voxel are discussed. These models are used further to critically evaluate the bulk lithosphere heat production in the continents and the oceans. Cross-checks between our model and results from: 1) heat flux (Artemieva, 2006; Davies, 2013; Cammarano and Guerri, 2017), 2) gravity (Reguzzoni and Sampietro, 2015), and 3) geochemical and petrological models (Rudnick and Gao, 2014; Hacker et al. 2015) are performed.

  2. Beginning the Modern Regime of Subduction Tectonics in Neoproterozoic time: Inferences from Ophiolites of the Arabian-Nubian Shield

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, R.

    2003-04-01

    It is now clear that the motive force for plate tectonics is provided by the sinking of dense lithosphere in subduction zones. Correspondingly, the modern tectonic regime is more aptly called ``subduction tectonics" than plate tectonics, which only describes the way Earth's thermal boundary layer adjusts to subduction. The absence of subduction tectonics on Mars and Venus implies that special circumstances are required for subduction to occur on a silicate planet. This begs the question: When did Earth's oceanic lithosphere cool sufficiently for subduction to began? This must be inferred from indirect lines of evidence; the focus here is on the temporal distribution of ophiolites. Well-preserved ophiolites with ``supra-subduction zone" (SSZ) affinities are increasingly regarded as forming when subduction initiates as a result of lithospheric collapse (± a nudge to get it started), and the formation of ophiolitic lithosphere in evolving forearcs favors their emplacement and preservation. The question now is what percentage of ophiolites with ``supra-subduction zone" (SSZ) chemical signatures formed in forearcs during subduction initiation events? Most of the large, well-preserved ophiolites (e.g., Oman, Cyprus, California, Newfoundland) may have this origin. If so, the distribution in space and time of such ophiolites can be used to identify ``subduction initiation" events, which are important events in the evolution of plate tectonics. Such events first occurred at the end of the Archean (˜2.5Ga) and again in the Paleoproterozoic (˜1.8 Ga), but ophiolites become uncommon after this. Well-preserved ophiolites become abundant in Neoproterozoic time, at about 800±50 Ma. Ophiolites of this age are common and well-preserved in the Arabian-Nubian Shield (ANS) of Egypt, Sudan, Ethiopia, Eritrea, and Saudi Arabia. ANS ophiolites mostly contain spinels with high Cr#, indicating SSZ affinities. Limited trace element data on pillowed lavas supports this interpretation

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-12-01

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

  4. Tectonics and geology of spreading ridge subduction at the Chile Triple Junction: a synthesis of results from Leg 141 of the Ocean Drilling Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Behrmann, J.H.; Lewis, S.D.; Cande, S.C.

    1994-01-01

    An active oceanic spreading ridge is being subducted beneath the South American continent at the Chile Triple Junction. This process has played a major part in the evolution of most of the continental margins that border the Pacific Ocean basin. A combination of high resolution swath bathymetric maps, seismic reflection profiles and drillhole and core data from five sites drilled during Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Leg 141 provide important data that define the tectonic, structural and stratigraphic effects of this modern example of spreading ridge subduction. A change from subduction accretion to subduction erosion occurs along-strike of the South American forearc. This change is prominently expressed by normal faulting, forearc subsidence, oversteepening of topographic slopes and intensive sedimentary mass wasting, overprinted on older signatures of sediment accretion, overthrusting and uplift processes in the forearc. Data from drill sites north of the triple junction (Sites 859-861) show that after an important phase of forearc building in the early to late Pliocene, subduction accretion had ceased in the late Pliocene. Since that time sediment on the downgoing oceanic Nazca plate has been subducted. Site 863 was drilled into the forearc in the immediate vicinity of the triple junction above the subducted spreading ridge axis. Here, thick and intensely folded and faulted trench slope sediments of Pleistocene age are currently involved in the frontal deformation of the forearc. Early faults with thrust and reverse kinematics are overprinted by later normal faults. The Chile Triple Junction is also the site of apparent ophiolite emplacement into the South American forearc. Drilling at Site 862 on the Taitao Ridge revealed an offshore volcanic sequence of Plio-Pleistocene age associated with the Taitao Fracture Zone, adjacent to exposures of the Pliocene-aged Taitao ophiolite onshore. Despite the large-scale loss of material from the forearc at the triple junction

  5. Synthetic Analysis of the Effective Elastic Thickness of the Lithosphere in China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Z.; Li, C.

    2017-12-01

    Effective elastic thickness (Te) represents the response of the lithosphere to a long-term (larger than 105 years) geological loading and reflects the deformation mechanism of plate and its thermodynamic state. Temperature and composition of the lithosphere, coupling between crust and lithospheric mantle, and lithospheric structures affect Te. Regional geology in China is quite complex, influenced by the subduction of the Pacific and Philippine Sea plates in the east and the collision of the Eurasia plate with the India-Australia plate in the southwest. Te can help understand the evolution and strength of the lithospheres in different areas and tectonic units. Here we apply the multitaper coherence method to estimate Te in China using the topography (ETOPO1) and Bouguer gravity anomalies (WGM2012) , at different window sizes (600km*600km, 800km*800km, 1000km*1000km) and moving steps. The lateral variation of Te in China coincides well with the geology. The old stable cratons or basins always correspond to larger Te, whereas the oceanic lithosphere or active orogen blocks tend to get smaller Te. We further correlate Te to curie-point depths (Zb) and heat flow to understand how temperature influences the strength of the lithosphere. Despite of a complex correlation between Te and Zb, good positive correlations are found in the North China Block, Tarim Basin, and Lower Yangtze, showing strong influence of temperature on lithospheric strength. Conversely, the Tibetan Plateau, Upper and Middle Yangtze, and East China Sea Basin even show negative correlation, suggesting that lithospheric structures and compositions play more important roles than temperature in these blocks. We also find that earthquakes tend to occur preferably in a certain range of Te. Deeper earthquakes are more likely to occur where the lithosphere is stronger with larger Te. Crust with a larger Te may also have a deeper ductile-brittle boundary, along which deep large earthquakes tend to cluster.

  6. A numerical reference model for themomechanical subduction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Quinquis, Matthieu; Chemia, Zurab; Tosi, Nicola

    2010-01-01

    Building an advanced numerical model of subduction requires choosing values for various geometrical parameters and material properties, among others, the initial lithosphere thicknesses, representative lithological types and their mechanical and thermal properties, rheologies, initial temperature...

  7. The magma ocean as an impediment to lunar plate tectonics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warren, Paul H.

    1993-01-01

    The primary impediment to plate tectonics on the moon was probably the great thickness of its crust and particularly its high crust/lithosphere thickness ratio. This in turn can be attributed to the preponderance of low-density feldspar over all other Al-compatible phases in the lunar interior. During the magma ocean epoch, the moon's crust/lithosphere thickness ratio was at the maximum theoretical value, approximately 1, and it remained high for a long time afterwards. A few large regions of thin crust were produced by basin-scale cratering approximately contemporaneous with the demise of the magma ocean. However, these regions probably also tend to have uncommonly thin lithosphere, since they were directly heated and indirectly enriched in K, Th, and U by the same cratering process. Thus, plate tectonics on the moon in the form of systematic lithosphere subduction was impeded by the magma ocean.

  8. The lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary beneath the Korean Peninsula from S receiver functions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, S. H.; Rhie, J.

    2017-12-01

    The shallow lithosphere in the Eastern Asia at the east of the North-South Gravity Lineament is well published. The reactivation of the upper asthenosphere induced by the subducting plates is regarded as a dominant source of the lithosphere thinning. Additionally, assemblage of various tectonic blocks resulted in complex variation of the lithosphere thickness in the Eastern Asia. Because, the Korean Peninsula located at the margin of the Erasian Plate in close vicinity to the trench of subducting oceanic plate, significant reactivation of the upper asthenosphere is expected. For the study of the tectonic history surrounding the Korean Peninsula, we determined the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB) beneath the Korean Peninsula using common conversion point stacking method with S receiver functions. The depth of the LAB beneath the Korean Peninsula ranges from 60 km to 100 km and confirmed to be shallower than that expected for Cambrian blocks as previous global studies. The depth of the LAB is getting shallower to the south, 95 km at the north and 60 km at the south. And rapid change of the LAB depth is observed between 36°N and 37°N. The depth change of the LAB getting shallower to the south implies that the source of the lithosphere thinning is a hot mantle upwelling induced by the northward subduction of the oceanic plates since Mesozoic. Unfortunately, existing tectonic models can hardly explain the different LAB depth in the north and in the south as well as the rapid change of the LAB depth.

  9. Geochemistry of subduction zone serpentinites: A review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deschamps, Fabien; Godard, Marguerite; Guillot, Stéphane; Hattori, Kéiko

    2013-09-01

    Over the last decades, numerous studies have emphasized the role of serpentinites in the subduction zone geodynamics. Their presence and role in subduction environments are recognized through geophysical, geochemical and field observations of modern and ancient subduction zones and large amounts of geochemical database of serpentinites have been created. Here, we present a review of the geochemistry of serpentinites, based on the compilation of ~ 900 geochemical data of abyssal, mantle wedge and exhumed serpentinites after subduction. The aim was to better understand the geochemical evolution of these rocks during their subduction as well as their impact in the global geochemical cycle. When studying serpentinites, it is essential to determine their protoliths and their geological history before serpentinization. The geochemical data of serpentinites shows little mobility of compatible and rare earth elements (REE) at the scale of hand-specimen during their serpentinization. Thus, REE abundance can be used to identify the protolith for serpentinites, as well as magmatic processes such as melt/rock interactions before serpentinization. In the case of subducted serpentinites, the interpretation of trace element data is difficult due to the enrichments of light REE, independent of the nature of the protolith. We propose that enrichments are probably not related to serpentinization itself, but mostly due to (sedimentary-derived) fluid/rock interactions within the subduction channel after the serpentinization. It is also possible that the enrichment reflects the geochemical signature of the mantle protolith itself which could derive from the less refractory continental lithosphere exhumed at the ocean-continent transition. Additionally, during the last ten years, numerous analyses have been carried out, notably using in situ approaches, to better constrain the behavior of fluid-mobile elements (FME; e.g. B, Li, Cl, As, Sb, U, Th, Sr) incorporated in serpentine phases

  10. Structure of the oceanic lithosphere and upper mantle north of the Gloria Fault in the eastern mid-Atlantic by receiver function analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hannemann, Katrin; Krüger, Frank; Dahm, Torsten; Lange, Dietrich

    2017-10-01

    Receiver functions (RF) have been used for several decades to study structures beneath seismic stations. Although most available stations are deployed on shore, the number of ocean bottom station (OBS) experiments has increased in recent years. Almost all OBSs have to deal with higher noise levels and a limited deployment time (˜1 year), resulting in a small number of usable records of teleseismic earthquakes. Here we use OBSs deployed as midaperture array in the deep ocean (4.5-5.5 km water depth) of the eastern mid-Atlantic. We use evaluation criteria for OBS data and beamforming to enhance the quality of the RFs. Although some stations show reverberations caused by sedimentary cover, we are able to identify the Moho signal, indicating a normal thickness (5-8 km) of oceanic crust. Observations at single stations with thin sediments (300-400 m) indicate that a probable sharp lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB) might exist at a depth of ˜70-80 km which is in line with LAB depth estimates for similar lithospheric ages in the Pacific. The mantle discontinuities at ˜410 km and ˜660 km are clearly identifiable. Their delay times are in agreement with PREM. Overall the usage of beam-formed earthquake recordings for OBS RF analysis is an excellent way to increase the signal quality and the number of usable events.

  11. Subduction and volcanism in the Iberia-North Africa collision zone from tomographic images of the upper mantle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villaseñor, Antonio; Chevrot, Sébastien; Harnafi, Mimoun; Gallart, Josep; Pazos, Antonio; Serrano, Inmaculada; Córdoba, Diego; Pulgar, Javier A.; Ibarra, Pedro

    2015-11-01

    New tomographic images of the upper mantle beneath the westernmost Mediterranean suggest that the evolution of the region experienced two subduction-related episodes. First subduction of oceanic and/or extended continental lithosphere, now located mainly beneath the Betics at depths greater than 400 km, took place on a NW-SE oriented subduction zone. This was followed by a slab-tear process that initiated in the east and propagated to the west, leading to westward slab rollback and possibly lower crustal delamination. The current position of the slab tear is located approximately at 4°W, and to the west of this location the subducted lithosphere is still attached to the surface along the Gibraltar Arc. Our new P-wave velocity model is able to image the attached subducted lithosphere as a narrow high-velocity body extending to shallow depths, coinciding with the region of maximum curvature of the Gibraltar Arc, the occurrence of intermediate-depth earthquakes, and anomalously thick crust. This thick crust has a large influence in the measured teleseismic travel time residuals and therefore in the obtained P-wave tomographic model. We show that removing the effects of the thick crust significantly improves the shallow images of the slab and therefore the interpretations based on the seismic structure.

  12. The Indian Ocean lithosphere

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Rao, D.G.; Yanshin, A

    stream_size 6 stream_content_type text/plain stream_name Mem_Geol_Soc_India_39_1.pdf.txt stream_source_info Mem_Geol_Soc_India_39_1.pdf.txt Content-Encoding ISO-8859-1 Content-Type text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1 ...

  13. Two-phase southward subduction of the Mongol-Okhotsk oceanic plate constrained by Permian-Jurassic granitoids in the Erguna and Xing'an massifs (NE China)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Huichuan; Li, Yinglei; He, Hongyun; Huangfu, Pengpeng; Liu, Yongzheng

    2018-04-01

    Geodynamics of the Mongol-Okhotsk oceanic plate southward subduction are still pending problems. This paper presents new zircon LA-ICP-MS U-Pb age and whole-rock geochemical data for the middle Permian to Middle Jurassic granitoids in the western Erguna and central Xing'an massifs. 267-264 Ma, 241 Ma and 173 Ma I-type granites, and 216 Ma A-type granites were identified in the Erguna and Xing'an massifs (NE China). The I-type granites were produced by partial melting of the lower mafic crust. The 216 Ma A-type granites were derived from partial melting of crustal materials with tonalitic to granodioritic compositions. The 267-264 Ma and 241 Ma I-type granites were generated in an Andean-type arc setting, wheras the 216 Ma A-type and 173 Ma granites were formed in supra subduction extensional setting. We summarized previous age data of the middle Permian to Middle Jurassic magmtaic rocks in the Erguna and Xing'an Massifs and identified two isolated phases of magmatic activity including the ca. 267-225 Ma and ca. 215-165 Ma periods, with a significant magmatic gap at ca. 225-215 Ma. These middle Permian to Middle Jurassic magmatic rocks are closely related to the southward subduction of the Mongol-Okhotsk ocean. A two-stage tectonic evolutionary model was proposed to account for these geological observations in the Erguna and Xing'an massifs, involving Permian to Middle Triassic continuous southward subduction of the Mongol-Okhotsk oceanic plate and Late Triassic to Jurassic slab-rollback and supra subduction extension.

  14. Implications for metal and volatile cycles from the pH of subduction zone fluids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galvez, Matthieu E.; Connolly, James A. D.; Manning, Craig E.

    2016-11-01

    The chemistry of aqueous fluids controls the transport and exchange—the cycles—of metals and volatile elements on Earth. Subduction zones, where oceanic plates sink into the Earth’s interior, are the most important geodynamic setting for this fluid-mediated chemical exchange. Characterizing the ionic speciation and pH of fluids equilibrated with rocks at subduction zone conditions has long been a major challenge in Earth science. Here we report thermodynamic predictions of fluid-rock equilibria that tie together models of the thermal structure, mineralogy and fluid speciation of subduction zones. We find that the pH of fluids in subducted crustal lithologies is confined to a mildly alkaline range, modulated by rock volatile and chlorine contents. Cold subduction typical of the Phanerozoic eon favours the preservation of oxidized carbon in subducting slabs. In contrast, the pH of mantle wedge fluids is very sensitive to minor variations in rock composition. These variations may be caused by intramantle differentiation, or by infiltration of fluids enriched in alkali components extracted from the subducted crust. The sensitivity of pH to soluble elements in low abundance in the host rocks, such as carbon, alkali metals and halogens, illustrates a feedback between the chemistry of the Earth’s atmosphere-ocean system and the speciation of subduction zone fluids via the composition of the seawater-altered oceanic lithosphere. Our findings provide a perspective on the controlling reactions that have coupled metal and volatile cycles in subduction zones for more than 3 billion years7.

  15. Temperature, salinity, pressure, and other data from current meter and CTD casts in the NE Atlantic Ocean as part of the Subduction Accelerated Research Initiative (ARI) project, from 1991-05-18 to 1993-06-14 (NODC Accession 9700245)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The overall objective of the Subduction Accelerated Research Initiative (ARI) was to bring together several techniques to address the formation and evolution of...

  16. Imaging Canary Island hotspot material beneath the lithosphere of Morocco and southern Spain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Meghan S.; O'Driscoll, Leland J.; Butcher, Amber J.; Thomas, Christine

    2015-12-01

    The westernmost Mediterranean has developed into its present day tectonic configuration as a result of complex interactions between late stage subduction of the Neo-Tethys Ocean, continental collision of Africa and Eurasia, and the Canary Island mantle plume. This study utilizes S receiver functions (SRFs) from over 360 broadband seismic stations to seismically image the lithosphere and uppermost mantle from southern Spain through Morocco and the Canary Islands. The lithospheric thickness ranges from ∼65 km beneath the Atlas Mountains and the active volcanic islands to over ∼210 km beneath the cratonic lithosphere in southern Morocco. The common conversion point (CCP) volume of the SRFs indicates that thinned lithosphere extends from beneath the Canary Islands offshore southwestern Morocco, to beneath the continental lithosphere of the Atlas Mountains, and then thickens abruptly at the West African craton. Beneath thin lithosphere between the Canary hot spot and southern Spain, including below the Atlas Mountains and the Alboran Sea, there are distinct pockets of low velocity material, as inferred from high amplitude positive, sub-lithospheric conversions in the SRFs. These regions of low seismic velocity at the base of the lithosphere extend beneath the areas of Pliocene-Quaternary magmatism, which has been linked to a Canary hotspot source via geochemical signatures. However, we find that this volume of low velocity material is discontinuous along strike and occurs only in areas of recent volcanism and where asthenospheric mantle flow is identified with shear wave splitting analyses. We propose that the low velocity structure beneath the lithosphere is material flowing sub-horizontally northeastwards beneath Morocco from the tilted Canary Island plume, and the small, localized volcanoes are the result of small-scale upwellings from this material.

  17. Peeling back the lithosphere: Controlling parameters, surface expressions and the future directions in delamination modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Göğüş, Oğuz H.; Ueda, Kosuke

    2018-06-01

    Geodynamical models investigate the rheological and physical properties of the lithosphere that peels back (delaminates) from the upper-middle crust. Meanwhile, model predictions are used to relate to a set of observations in the geological context to the test the validity of delamination. Here, we review numerical and analogue models of delamination from these perspectives and provide a number of first-order topics which future modeling studies may address. Models suggest that the presence of the weak lower crust that resides between the strong mantle lithosphere (at least 100 times more viscous/stronger) and the strong upper crust is necessary to develop delamination. Lower crustal weakening may be induced by melt infiltration, shear heating or it naturally occurs through the jelly sandwich type strength profile of the continental lithosphere. The negative buoyancy of the lithosphere required to facilitate the delamination is induced by the pre-existing ocean subduction and/or the lower crustal eclogitization. Surface expression of the peeling back lithosphere has a distinct transient and migratory imprint on the crust, resulting in rapid surface uplift/subsidence, magmatism, heating and shortening/extension. New generation of geodynamical experiments can explain how different types of melting (e.g hydrated, dry melting) occurs with delamination. Reformation of the lithosphere after removal, three dimensional aspects, and the termination of the process are key investigation areas for future research. The robust model predictions, as with other geodynamic modeling studies should be reconciled with observations.

  18. Suitability of Open-Ocean Instrumentation for Use in Near-Field Tsunami Early Warning Along Seismically Active Subduction Zones

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williamson, Amy L.; Newman, Andrew V.

    2018-05-01

    Over the past decade, the number of open-ocean gauges capable of parsing information about a passing tsunami has steadily increased, particularly through national cable networks and international buoyed efforts such as the Deep-ocean Assessment and Reporting of Tsunami (DART). This information is analyzed to disseminate tsunami warnings to affected regions. However, most current warnings that incorporate tsunami are directed at mid- and far-field localities. In this study, we analyze the region surrounding four seismically active subduction zones, Cascadia, Japan, Chile, and Java, for their potential to facilitate local tsunami early warning using such systems. We assess which locations currently have instrumentation in the right locations for direct tsunami observations with enough time to provide useful warning to the nearest affected coastline—and which are poorly suited for such systems. Our primary findings are that while some regions are ill-suited for this type of early warning, such as the coastlines of Chile, other localities, like Java, Indonesia, could incorporate direct tsunami observations into their hazard forecasts with enough lead time to be effective for coastal community emergency response. We take into account the effect of tsunami propagation with regard to shallow bathymetry on the fore-arc as well as the effect of earthquake source placement. While it is impossible to account for every type of off-shore tsunamigenic event in these locales, this study aims to characterize a typical large tsunamigenic event occurring in the shallow part of the megathrust as a guide in what is feasible with early tsunami warning.

  19. Distribution of shallow very low frequency earthquakes in the eastern Nankai trough influenced by a subducted oceanic ridge: Results from cluster analysis applied to ocean bottom seismographs

    Science.gov (United States)

    To, A.; Obana, K.; Araki, E.

    2016-12-01

    The activity of very low frequency earthquakes (VLFEs) in the shallow accretionary prism of the eastern Nankai trough has been observed frequently in the past. In this study, we investigated the distribution of VLFEs that occurred in October 2015, which were recorded by an array of broadband ocean bottom seismometers (BBOBSs) of DONET1 network. The size of the network is much wider (>80 km) compared to previous BBOBS networks that were used for close-in observations of VLFEs; therefore the new dataset provides a broader overview of the VLFE distribution of this region. We first located the detected events using conventional methods such as the envelope correlation method. However, the results seemed to be largely scattered due to noise and the effect of 3D structures that could not be properly handled. Then, we introduced hierarchal clustering analysis, based on measured travel time patterns among stations obtained for each event. The analyses enabled the assessment of relative locations among events. Finally, the locations of event-clusters were estimated, instead of individual events, so that the obtained locations seemed less scattered. The obtained results indicate that the VLFE distribution is strongly influenced by a subducted ridge (Park et al., 2003) that exists beneath the northeastern side of the DONET1 network. Though the VLFEs are distributed from an area near the outer ridge toward the trench axis in the region with a smooth plate boundary, they are clustered at a shallow depth near the outer ridge in the region of the rough plate boundary. The VLFEs are clustered on the landward side of the peak of the subducted ridge; this could be explained by an elevated pore pressure in the region caused by the low-permeability oceanic ridge that may clog the up-dip pathway of the fluid along the decollement zone. The along-strike variation of the stress state, inferred from the VLFE distribution, should be an important factor in assessing the strain release

  20. Dynamics of interplate domain in subduction zones: influence of rheological parameters and subducting plate age

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Arcay

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available The properties of the subduction interplate domain are likely to affect not only the seismogenic potential of the subduction area but also the overall subduction process, as it influences its viability. Numerical simulations are performed to model the long-term equilibrium state of the subduction interplate when the diving lithosphere interacts with both the overriding plate and the surrounding convective mantle. The thermomechanical model combines a non-Newtonian viscous rheology and a pseudo-brittle rheology. Rock strength here depends on depth, temperature and stress, for both oceanic crust and mantle rocks. I study the evolution through time of, on one hand, the brittle-ductile transition (BDT depth, zBDT, and, on the other hand, of the kinematic decoupling depth, zdec, simulated along the subduction interplate. The results show that both a high friction and a low ductile strength at the asthenospheric wedge tip shallow zBDT. The influence of the weak material activation energy is of second order but not negligible. zBDT becomes dependent on the ductile strength increase with depth (activation volume if the BDT occurs at the interplate decoupling depth. Regarding the interplate decoupling depth, it is shallowed (1 significantly if mantle viscosity at asthenospheric wedge tip is low, (2 if the difference in mantle and interplate activation energy is weak, and (3 if the activation volume is increased. Very low friction coefficients and/or low asthenospheric viscosities promote zBDT = zdec. I then present how the subducting lithosphere age affects the brittle-ductile transition depth and the kinematic decoupling depth in this model. Simulations show that a rheological model in which the respective activation energies of mantle and interplate material are too close hinders the mechanical decoupling at the down-dip extent of the interplate

  1. Modelling guided waves in the Alaskan-Aleutian subduction zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coulson, Sophie; Garth, Thomas; Reitbrock, Andreas

    2016-04-01

    . The velocity structure of this relatively young subducting plate is compared to the velocity structure resolved in the older oceanic lithosphere subducted beneath Northern Japan. We also use guided wave observations to investigate the thickness and low velocity structure of the subducting Yakutat terrain. Additionally we discuss the dependence of the inferred slab geometry on the earthquake catalogues that are used.

  2. A geophysical potential field study to image the Makran subduction zone in SE of Iran

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abedi, Maysam; Bahroudi, Abbas

    2016-10-01

    The Makran subduction wedge as one of the largest subduction complexes has been forming due to the Arabian oceanic lithosphere subducting beneath the Lut and the Afghan rigid block microplates. To better visualize the subducting oceanic crust in this region, a geophysical model of magnetic susceptibility from an airborne magnetic survey (line spacing about 7.5 km) over the Makran zone located at southeast of Iran is created to image various structural units in Iran plate. The constructed geophysical model from the 3D inverse modeling of the airborne magnetic data indicates a thin subducting slab to the north of the Makran structural zone. It is demonstrated that the thickness of sedimentary units varies approximately at an interval of 7.5-11 km from north to south of this zone in the Iranian plate, meanwhile the curie depth is also estimated approximately basement, while such intensity reduces over the Makran. The directional derivatives of the magnetic field data have subtle changes in the Makran, but strongly increase in the Jazmurian by enhancing and separating different structural boundaries in this region. In addition, the density variations of the subsurface geological layers were determined by 3D inversion of the ground-based gravity data over the whole study area, where the constructed density model was in good agreement with the magnetic one. According to the outputs of the magnetic susceptibility and the density contrast, the Arabian plate subducts to the north under the Eurasia with a very low dip angle in the Makran structural zone.

  3. Lead transport in intra-oceanic subduction zones: 2D geochemical-thermo-mechanical modeling of isotopic signatures

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Baitsch-Ghirardello, B.; Stracke, A.; Connolly, J.A.D.; Nikolaeva, K.M.; Gerya, T.V.

    2014-01-01

    Understanding the physical-chemical mechanisms and pathways of geochemical transport in subduction zones remains a long-standing goal of subduction-related research. In this study, we perform fully coupled geochemical-thermo-mechanical (GcTM) numerical simulations to investigate Pb isotopic

  4. Fossil intermediate-depth earthquakes in subducting slabs linked to differential stress release

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scambelluri, Marco; Pennacchioni, Giorgio; Gilio, Mattia; Bestmann, Michel; Plümper, Oliver; Nestola, Fabrizio

    2017-12-01

    The cause of intermediate-depth (50-300 km) seismicity in subduction zones is uncertain. It is typically attributed either to rock embrittlement associated with fluid pressurization, or to thermal runaway instabilities. Here we document glassy pseudotachylyte fault rocks—the products of frictional melting during coseismic faulting—in the Lanzo Massif ophiolite in the Italian Western Alps. These pseudotachylytes formed at subduction-zone depths of 60-70 km in poorly hydrated to dry oceanic gabbro and mantle peridotite. This rock suite is a fossil analogue to an oceanic lithospheric mantle that undergoes present-day subduction. The pseudotachylytes locally preserve high-pressure minerals that indicate an intermediate-depth seismic environment. These pseudotachylytes are important because they are hosted in a near-anhydrous lithosphere free of coeval ductile deformation, which excludes an origin by dehydration embrittlement or thermal runaway processes. Instead, our observations indicate that seismicity in cold subducting slabs can be explained by the release of differential stresses accumulated in strong dry metastable rocks.

  5. Early Cretaceous MORB-type basalt and A-type rhyolite in northern Tibet: Evidence for ridge subduction in the Bangong-Nujiang Tethyan Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Jian-Jun; Li, Cai; Sun, Zhen-Ming; Xu, Wei; Wang, Ming; Xie, Chao-Ming

    2018-04-01

    New zircon U-Pb ages, major- and trace-element data, and Hf isotopic compositions are presented for bimodal volcanic rocks of the Zhaga Formation (ZF) in the western-middle segment of the Bangong-Nujiang suture zone (BNSZ), northern Tibet. The genesis of these rocks is described, and implications for late-stage evolution of the Bangong-Nujiang Tethyan Ocean (BNTO) are considered. Detailed studies show that the ZF bimodal rocks, which occur as layers within a typical bathyal to abyssal flysch deposit, comprise MORB-type basalt that formed at a mid-ocean ridge, and low-K calc-alkaline A-type rhyolite derived from juvenile crust. The combination of MORB-type basalt, calc-alkaline A-type rhyolite, and bathyal to abyssal flysch deposits in the ZF leads us to propose that they formed as a result of ridge subduction. The A-type ZF rhyolites yield LA-ICP-MS zircon U-Pb ages of 118-112 Ma, indicating formation during the Early Cretaceous. Data from the present study, combined with regional geological data, indicate that the BNTO underwent conversion from ocean opening to ocean closure during the Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous. The eastern segment of the BNTO closed during this period, while the western and western-middle segments were still at least partially open and active during the Early Cretaceous, accompanied by ridge subduction within the Bangong-Nujiang Tethyan Ocean.

  6. The behavior of iron and zinc stable isotopes accompanying the subduction of mafic oceanic crust: A case study from Western Alpine ophiolites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inglis, Edward C.; Debret, Baptiste; Burton, Kevin W.; Millet, Marc-Alban; Pons, Marie-Laure; Dale, Christopher W.; Bouilhol, Pierre; Cooper, Matthew; Nowell, Geoff M.; McCoy-West, Alex J.; Williams, Helen M.

    2017-07-01

    Arc lavas display elevated Fe3+/ΣFe ratios relative to MORB. One mechanism to explain this is the mobilization and transfer of oxidized or oxidizing components from the subducting slab to the mantle wedge. Here we use iron and zinc isotopes, which are fractionated upon complexation by sulfide, chloride, and carbonate ligands, to remark on the chemistry and oxidation state of fluids released during prograde metamorphism of subducted oceanic crust. We present data for metagabbros and metabasalts from the Chenaillet massif, Queyras complex, and the Zermatt-Saas ophiolite (Western European Alps), which have been metamorphosed at typical subduction zone P-T conditions and preserve their prograde metamorphic history. There is no systematic, detectable fractionation of either Fe or Zn isotopes across metamorphic facies, rather the isotope composition of the eclogites overlaps with published data for MORB. The lack of resolvable Fe isotope fractionation with increasing prograde metamorphism likely reflects the mass balance of the system, and in this scenario Fe mobility is not traceable with Fe isotopes. Given that Zn isotopes are fractionated by S-bearing and C-bearing fluids, this suggests that relatively small amounts of Zn are mobilized from the mafic lithologies in within these types of dehydration fluids. Conversely, metagabbros from the Queyras that are in proximity to metasediments display a significant Fe isotope fractionation. The covariation of δ56Fe of these samples with selected fluid mobile elements suggests the infiltration of sediment derived fluids with an isotopically light signature during subduction.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-04-01

    The thermal structure of subduction zones plays a key role on mechanical and chemical processes taking place along the slab-mantle interface. Until now, changes through time of this thermal structure have been explored mostly by the means of numerical simulations. However, both "warm" (i.e., epidote-bearing), and "cold" (i.e., lawsonite-bearing) HP oceanic rocks have been reported in some fossil subduction complexes exposed at the Earth's surface (e.g., Franciscan Complex, California; Rio San Juan Complex, Hispañola; Halilbağı Unit, Central Anatolia). These a-priori "incompatible" rocks witness different thermal stages of ancient subduction zones and their study might provide complementary constraints to numerical models. To decipher the meaning of these contrasting metamorphic rocks in the Halilbağı Unit, we are carrying out Lu-Hf geochronology on garnet (grt) and lws from a variety of HP oceanic rocks, as well as the metamorphic sole of the overlying ophiolite. We selected five samples that are representative of the variety of metamorphic evolutions (i.e. peak conditions and P-T paths) encountered in this area. Preliminary analyses yielded 110 Ma (grt-hbl isochron) for a sub-ophiolitic grt amphibolite; 92 Ma (grt-omp) for an eclogite with prograde and retrograde ep; 90 Ma (grt-omp) for an eclogitic metabasite with prograde ep and retrograde ep+lws; 87 Ma (grt-gln) for a lws eclogite with prograde ep; and 86 Ma (grt-gln) for a blueschist with prograde and retrograde lws. These ages are mainly two-point isochrons. Further-refined data will be presented at the EGU General Assembly 2015, in Vienna. The consistent younging trend from "warm" to "cold" metamorphic rocks revealed by these first-order results points to metamorphic-sole formation during the initiation of intra-oceanic subduction at ~110 Ma, and subsequent cooling of the slab-mantle interface between 92 and 86 Ma. Therefore, the contrasting metamorphic evolutions encountered in the Halilbağı Unit

  8. 3D Density Structure of Oceanic Lithosphere Affected by A Plume: A Case Study from the Greater Jan Mayen-East Greenland Region (NE Atlantic)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, P.; Sippel, J.; Breivik, A. J.; Scheck-Wenderoth, M.; Meeßen, C.

    2017-12-01

    Unraveling the density structure of the oceanic lithosphere north of Iceland is key for understanding the effects of the Iceland Plume on the mid-ocean ridges of the greater Jan Mayen-East Greenland Region. We use a data-integrative approach for 3D gravity modeling to develop new insights into the crust and upper mantle density structure of this region. First, we obtain the 3D density structure of the sediments and crust from interpretations of regional reflection and refraction seismic lines. Then, the temperature and density structure of the mantle between 50 and 250 km are derived from a published shear-wave velocity (Vs) tomography model. To assess the density configuration between the Moho and 50 km depth, we follow a combined forward and inverse 3D gravity modeling approach. The Vs tomography and derived density of the deeper mantle (>50 km depth) reveal that the low-density anomaly related to the Iceland plume gets weaker with increasing distance from the plume, i.e. from the strongly influenced Middle Kolbeinsey Ridge (MKR) to the Mohn's Ridge. The West Jan Mayen Fracture Zone is identified as a main mantle density contrast, indicative of differences in the thermal evolution of the ridge systems it separates. Beneath the MKR region, the low-density anomaly at depths of >50 km continues upwards into the uppermost mantle, where its lateral dimensions narrow considerably. This elongated density anomaly is consistent with a basement high and indicates a channelization of the Iceland plume effects. The NE-SW elongated mantle anomaly does not, however, coincide with the topographical NNE-SSW striking ridge axis. Thus, the modelled plume-affected oceanic lithosphere reveals discrepancies with the half-space cooling model. We discuss the 3D density model in terms of such spatial relations between deeper mantle anomalies and the shallow crustal structure.

  9. Stress Drops for Oceanic Crust and Mantle Intraplate Earthquakes in the Subduction Zone of Northeastern Japan Inferred from the Spectral Inversion Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Si, H.; Ishikawa, K.; Arai, T.; Ibrahim, R.

    2017-12-01

    Understanding stress drop related to intraplate earthquakes in the subducting plate is very important for seismic hazard mitigation. In previous studies, Kita et al. (2015) analyzed stress drops for intraplate earthquakes under Hokkaido, Northern Japan, using S-coda wave spectral ratio analysis methods, and found that the stress drop for events occurring more than 10 km beneath the upper surface of the subducting plate (within the oceanic mantle) was larger than the stress drop for events occurring within 10 km of the upper surface of the subducting plate (in the oceanic crust). In this study, we focus on intraplate earthquakes that occur under Tohoku, Northeastern Japan, to determine whether similar stress drop differences may exist between earthquakes occurring within the upper 10 km of the subducting plate (within the oceanic crust) and those occurring deeper than 10 km (within the oceanic mantle), based on spectral inversion analysis of seismic waveforms recorded during the earthquakes. We selected 64 earthquakes with focal depths between 49-76 km and Mw 3.5-5.0 that occurred in the source area of the 2003 Miyagi-ken-oki earthquake (Mw 7.0) (region 1), and 82 earthquakes with focal depths between 49-67 km and Mw 3.5-5.5 in the source area of the 2011 Miyagi- ken-oki earthquake (Mw 7.1) (region 2). Records from the target earthquakes at 24 stations in region 1 and 21 stations in region 2 were used in the analysis. A 5-sec time window following S-wave onset was used for each station record. Borehole records of KiK-net station (MYGH04) was used as a reference station for both regions 1 and 2. We applied the spectral inversion analysis method of Matsunami et al. (2003) separately to regions 1 and 2. Our results show that stress drop generally increases with focal depth and that the stress drop for events occurring deeper than 10 km in the plate (within the oceanic mantle) were larger than the stress drop for events occurring within 10 km of the upper surface of the

  10. The extending lithosphere (Arthur Holmes Medal Lecture)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brun, Jean-Pierre

    2017-04-01

    Extension of the lithosphere gives birth to a wide range of structures, with characteristic widths between 10 and 1000 km, which includes continental rifts, passive margins, oceanic rifts, core complexes, or back-arc basins. Because the rheology of rocks strongly depends on temperature, this variety of extensional structures falls in two broad categories of extending lithospheres according to the initial Moho temperature TM. "Cold extending systems", with TM 750°C and crustal-dominated strength, lead, depending on strain rate, to either wide rifts or metamorphic core complexes. A much less quoted product of extension is the exhumation of high-pressure (HP ) metamorphic rocks occurring in domains of back-arc extension driven by slab rollback (e.g. Aegean; Appennines-Calabrian) or when the subduction upper plate undergoes extension for plate kinematics reasons (e.g. Norwegian Caledonides; Papua New Guinea). In these tectonic environments, well-documented pressure-temperature-time (P - T - t) paths of HP rocks show a two-stage retrogression path whose the first part corresponds to an isothermal large pressure drop ΔP proportional to the maximum pressure Pmax recorded by the rocks. This linear relation between ΔP and Pmax, which likely results from a stress switch between compression and extension at the onset of exhumation, is in fact observed in all HP metamorphism provinces worldwide, suggesting that the exhumation of HP rocks in extension is a general process rather than an uncommon case. In summary, the modes and products of extension are so diverse that, taken all together, they constitute a very versatile natural laboratory to decipher the rheological complexities of the continental lithosphere and their mechanical implications.

  11. Field and geochemical characterisitics of the Mesoarchean (~3075 ma) Ivisaartoq greenstone belt, southern West Greenland: Evidence for seafloor hydrothermal alteration in a supra-subduction oceanic crust

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Polat, A.; Appel, P.W.U.; Frei, Robert

    2006-01-01

    -enriched, near-flat HREE, and HFSE (especially Nb)-depleted trace element patterns, indicating a subduction zone geochemical signature. Ultramafic pillows and cumulates display large positive initial eNd values of + 1.3 to + 5.0, consistent with a strongly depleted mantle source. Given the geological...... similarities between the Ivisaartoq greenstone belt and Phanerozoic forearc ophiolites, we suggest that the Ivisaartoq greenstone belt represents Mesoarchean supra-subduction zone oceanic crust....... assemblage is interpreted as relict epidosite. The stage II metasomatic assemblage occurs as concordant discontinuous layered calc-silicate bodies to discordant calc-silicate veins commonly associated with shear zones. The stage II metasomatic assemblage consists mainly of diopside...

  12. Structure of the Cascadia Subduction Zone Imaged Using Surface Wave Tomography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaeffer, A. J.; Audet, P.

    2017-12-01

    Studies of the complete structure of the Cascadia subduction zone from the ridge to the arc have historically been limited by the lack of offshore ocean bottom seismograph (OBS) infrastructure. On land, numerous dense seismic deployments have illuminated detailed structures and dynamics associated with the interaction between the subducting oceanic plate and the overriding continental plate, including cycling of fluids, serpentinization of the overlying forearc mantle wedge, and the location of the upper surface of the Juan de Fuca plate as it subducts beneath the Pacific Northwest. In the last half-decade, the Cascadia Initiative (CI), along with Neptune (ONC) and several other OBS initiatives, have instrumented both the continental shelf and abyssal plains off shore of the Cascadia subduction zone, facilitating the construction of a complete picture of the subduction zone from ridge to trench and volcanic arc. In this study, we present a preliminary azimuthally anisotropic surface-wave phase-velocity based model of the complete system, capturing both the young, unaltered Juan de Fuca plate from the ridge, to its alteration as it enters the subduction zone, in addition to the overlying continent. This model is constructed from a combination of ambient noise cross-correlations and teleseismic two station interferometry, and combines together concurrently running offshore OBS and onshore stations. We furthermore perform a number of representative 1D depth inversions for shear velocity to categorize the pristine oceanic, subducted oceanic, and continental crust and lithospheric structure. In the future the dispersion dataset will be jointly inverted with receiver functions to constrain a 3D shear-velocity model of the complete region.

  13. Continental crust melting induced by subduction initiation of the South Tianshan Ocean: Insight from the Latest Devonian granitic magmatism in the southern Yili Block, NW China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bao, Zihe; Cai, Keda; Sun, Min; Xiao, Wenjiao; Wan, Bo; Wang, Yannan; Wang, Xiangsong; Xia, Xiaoping

    2018-03-01

    The Tianshan belt of the southwestern Central Asian Orogenic Belt was generated by Paleozoic multi-stage subduction and final closure of several extinct oceans, including the South Tianshan Ocean between the Kazakhstan-Yili and Tarim blocks. However, the subduction initiation and polarity of the South Tianshan Ocean remain issues of highly debated. This study presents new zircon U-Pb ages, geochemical compositions and Sr-Nd isotopes, as well as zircon Hf isotopic data of the Latest Devonian to Early Carboniferous granitic rocks in the Wusun Mountain of the Yili Paleozoic convergent margin, which, together with the spatial-temporal distributions of regional magmatic rocks, are applied to elucidate their petrogenesis and tectonic linkage to the northward subduction initiation of the South Tianshan Ocean. Our zircon U-Pb dating results reveal that these granites were emplaced at the time interval of 362.0 ± 1.2-360.3 ± 1.9 Ma, suggesting a marked partial melting event of the continental crust in the Latest Devonian to Early Carboniferous. These granites, based on their mineral compositions and textures, can be categorized as monzogranites and K-feldspar granites. Geochemically, both monzogranites and K-feldspar granites have characters of I-type granites with high K2O contents (4.64-4.83 wt.%), and the K-feldspar granites are highly fractionated I-type granites, while the monzogranites have features of unfractionated I-type granites. Whole-rock Sr-Nd isotopic modeling results suggest that ca. 20-40% mantle-derived magmas may be involved in magma mixing with continental crust partial melts to generate the parental magmas of the granites. The mantle-derived basaltic magmas was inferred not only to be a major component of magma mixture but also as an important heat source to fuse the continental crust in an extensional setting, which is evidenced by the high zircon saturation temperatures (713-727 °C and 760-782 °C) of the studied granites. The Latest Devonian to

  14. Early Carboniferous adakite-like and I-type granites in central Qiangtang, northern Tibet: Implications for intra-oceanic subduction and back-arc basin formation within the Paleo-Tethys Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Jin-Heng; Xie, Chao-Ming; Li, Cai; Wang, Ming; Wu, Hao; Li, Xing-Kui; Liu, Yi-Ming; Zhang, Tian-Yu

    2018-01-01

    Recent studies have proposed that the Late Devonian ophiolites in the central Qiangtang region of northern Tibet were formed in an oceanic back-arc basin setting, which has led to controversy over the subduction setting of the Longmucuo-Shuanghu-Lancangjiang Suture Zone (LSLSZ) during the Late Devonian to Early Carboniferous. In this paper we present new data about a suite of granite plutons that intrude into ophiolite in central Qiangtang. Our aim was to identify the type of subduction and to clarify the existence of an intra-oceanic back-arc basin in the LSLSZ during the Late Devonian to Early Carboniferous. The suite of granites consists of monzogranites, syenogranites, and granodiorites. Our laser ablation-inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry zircon U-Pb data yielded Early Carboniferous crystallization ages of 357.2 Ma, 357.4 Ma and 351.1 Ma. We subsequently investigated the petrogenesis and tectonic setting of these granites based on their geochemical and Hf isotopic characteristics. First, we divided the granites into high Sr/Y (HSG) and low Sr/Y granites (LSG). The HSG group contains monzogranites and granodiorites that have similar geochemical characteristics to adakites (i.e., high Sr/Y and La/Yb ratios, low MgO, Y, and Yb contents, and no pronounced negative Eu anomaly), although they have slightly lower Sr and Al2O3 contents, caused by crystal fractionation during late magmatic evolution. Therefore, we define the HSG group as adakite-like granites. The study of the HSG shows that they are adakite-like granites formed by partial melting of oceanic crust and experience fractional crystallization process during late evolution. However, some differences between the monzogranites and granodiorites indicate that there are varying degree contributions of subducted sediments during diagenesis. The LSG group contains syenogranites that have distinct negative correlations between their P2O5 and SiO2 contents, and Y and Th contents have significant positive

  15. Origin of ophiolite complexes related to intra-oceanic subduction initiation: implications of IODP Expedition 352 (Izu-Bonin fore arc)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robertson, Alastair; Avery, Aaron; Carvallo, Claire; Christeson, Gail; Ferré, Eric; Kurz, Walter; Kutterolf, Steffen; Morgan, Sally; Pearce, Julian; Reagan, Mark; Sager, William; Shervais, John; Whattam, Scott; International Ocean Discovery Program Expedition 352 (Izu-Bonin-Mariana Fore Arc), the Scientific Party of

    2015-04-01

    Ophiolites, representing oceanic crust exposed on land (by whatever means), are central to the interpretation of many orogenic belts (e.g. E Mediterranean). Based mostly on geochemical evidence, ophiolites are widely interpreted, in many but by no means all cases, as having formed within intra-oceanic settings above subduction zones (e.g. Troodos ophiolite, Cyprus). Following land geological, dredging and submersible studies, fore arcs of the SW Pacific region became recognised as likely settings of supra-subduction zone ophiolite genesis. This hypothesis was tested by recent drilling of the Izu-Bonin fore arc. Four sites were drilled, two on the outer fore arc and two on the upper trench slope. Site survey seismic data, combined with borehole data, indicate that three of the sites are located in fault-controlled sediment ponds that formed in response to dominantly down-to the-west extensional faulting (with hints of preceding top-to-the-east compressional thrusting). The sediments overlying the igneous basement, of maximum Late Eocene to Recent age, document ash and aeolian input, together with mass wasting of the fault-bounded sediment ponds. At the two more trenchward sites (U1440 and U1441), mostly tholeiitic basalts were drilled, including massive and pillowed lavas and hyaloclastite. Geochemically, these extrusives are of near mid-oceanic ridge basalt composition (fore arc basalts). Subtle chemical deviation from normal MORB can be explained by weakly fluid-influenced melting during decompression melting in the earliest stages of supra-subduction zone spreading (not as 'trapped' older MORB). The remaining two sites, c. 6 km to the west (U1439 and U1442), penetrated dominantly high-magnesian andesites, known as boninites, largely as fragmental material. Their formation implies the extraction of highly depleted magmas from previously depleted, refractory upper mantle in a supra-subduction zone setting. Following supra-subduction zone spreading, the active

  16. Paleomagnetism of Cretaceous Oceanic Red Beds (CORBs) from Gyangze, northern Tethys Himalaya: Evidence for Intra-oceanic Subduction System and Southern Paleolatitute Limit for the Lhasa Block

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Xiaodong

    2016-04-01

    indicate a paleolatitude of 10±2 degree north, ~2000 km distance from the southern Tethys Himalaya. Therefore, the formation is not deposited near the greater Indian continental margins. Based on recent plate tectonic reconstruction, the CORBs are very likely formed within a back-arc basin between the equatorial intra-oceanic subduction system and the Asian continental margin. Due to coeval development of abundant red beds in the Lhasa block, the characteristic pigments of hematite born in the CORBs are likely of terrestrial origin. In addition, the new data indicate that the Lhasa block is unlikely to be at low paleolatitude in the Late Cretaceous and Tertiary as some of the paleomagnetic results show.

  17. The lithosphere-asthenosphere: Italy and surroundings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Panza, G.F.; Aoudia, A.; Pontevivo, A.; Chimera, G.; Raykova, R.

    2003-02-01

    The velocity-depth distribution of the lithosphere-asthenosphere in the Italian region and surroundings is imaged, with a lateral resolution of about 100 km, by surface wave velocity tomography and non-linear inversion. Maps of the Moho depth, of the thickness of the lithosphere and of the shear-wave velocities, down to depths of 200 km and more, are constructed. A mantle wedge, identified in the uppermost mantle along the Apennines and the Calabrian Arc, underlies the principal recent volcanoes, and partial melting can be relevant in this part of the uppermost mantle. In Calabria a lithospheric doubling is seen, in connection with the subduction of the Ionian lithosphere. The asthenosphere is shallow in the Southern Tyrrhenian Sea. High velocity bodies, cutting the asthenosphere, outline the Adria-lonian subduction in the Tyrrhenian Sea and the deep-reaching lithospheric root in the Western Alps. Less deep lithospheric roots are seen in the Central Apennines. The lithosphere-asthenosphere properties delineate a differentiation between the northern and the southern sectors of the Adriatic Sea, likely attesting the fragmentation of Adria. (author)

  18. The lithosphere-asthenosphere Italy and surroundings

    CERN Document Server

    Panza, G F; Chimera, G; Pontevivo, A; Raykova, R

    2003-01-01

    The velocity-depth distribution of the lithosphere-asthenosphere in the Italian region and surroundings is imaged, with a lateral resolution of about 100 km, by surface wave velocity tomography and non-linear inversion. Maps of the Moho depth, of the thickness of the lithosphere and of the shear-wave velocities, down to depths of 200 km and more, are constructed. A mantle wedge, identified in the uppermost mantle along the Apennines and the Calabrian Arc, underlies the principal recent volcanoes, and partial melting can be relevant in this part of the uppermost mantle. In Calabria a lithospheric doubling is seen, in connection with the subduction of the Ionian lithosphere. The asthenosphere is shallow in the Southern Tyrrhenian Sea. High velocity bodies, cutting the asthenosphere, outline the Adria-lonian subduction in the Tyrrhenian Sea and the deep-reaching lithospheric root in the Western Alps. Less deep lithospheric roots are seen in the Central Apennines. The lithosphere-asthenosphere properties delineat...

  19. High-pressure metamorphic age and significance of eclogite-facies continental fragments associated with oceanic lithosphere in the Western Alps (Etirol-Levaz Slice, Valtournenche, Italy)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fassmer, Kathrin; Obermüller, Gerrit; Nagel, Thorsten J.; Kirst, Frederik; Froitzheim, Nikolaus; Sandmann, Sascha; Miladinova, Irena; Fonseca, Raúl O. C.; Münker, Carsten

    2016-05-01

    The Etirol-Levaz Slice in the Penninic Alps (Valtournenche, Italy) is a piece of eclogite-facies continental basement sandwiched between two oceanic units, the blueschist-facies Combin Zone in the hanging wall and the eclogite-facies Zermatt-Saas Zone in the footwall. It has been interpreted as an extensional allochthon from the continental margin of Adria, emplaced onto ultramafic and mafic basement of the future Zermatt-Saas Zone by Jurassic, rifting-related detachment faulting, and later subducted together with the future Zermatt-Saas Zone. Alternatively, the Etirol-Levaz Slice could be derived from a different paleogeographic domain and be separated from the Zermatt-Saas Zone by an Alpine shear zone. We present Lu-Hf whole rock-garnet ages of two eclogite samples, one from the center of the unit and one from the border to the Zermatt-Saas Zone below. These data are accompanied by a new geological map of the Etirol-Levaz Slice and the surrounding area, as well as detailed petrology of these two samples. Assemblages, mineral compositions and garnet zoning in both samples indicate a clockwise PT-path and peak-metamorphic conditions of about 550-600 °C/20-25 kbar, similar to conditions proposed for the underlying Zermatt-Saas Zone. Prograde garnet ages of the two samples are 61.8 ± 1.8 Ma and 52.4 ± 2.1 Ma and reflect different timing of subduction. One of these is significantly older than published ages of eclogite-facies metamorphism in the Zermatt-Saas Zone and thus contradicts the hypothesis of Mesozoic emplacement. The occurrence of serpentinite and metagabbro bodies possibly derived from the Zermatt-Saas Zone inside the Etirol-Levaz Slice suggests that the latter is a tectonic composite. The basement slivers forming the Etirol-Levaz Slice and other continental fragments were subducted earlier than the Zermatt-Saas Zone, but nonetheless experienced similar pressure-temperature histories. Our results support the hypothesis that the Zermatt-Saas Zone and the

  20. Dynamics of subduction, accretion, exhumation and slab roll-back: Mediterranean scenarios

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tirel, C.; Brun, J.; Burov, E. B.; Wortel, M. J.; Lebedev, S.

    2010-12-01

    A dynamic orogen reveals various tectonic processes brought about by subduction: accretion of oceanic and continental crust, exhumation of UHP-HP rocks, and often, back-arc extension. In the Mediterranean, orogeny is strongly affected by slab retreat, as in the Aegean and Tyrrhenian Seas. In order to examine the different dynamic processes in a self-consistent manner, we perform a parametric study using the fully coupled thermo-mechanical numerical code PARAFLAM. The experiments reproduce a subduction zone in a slab pull mode, with accretion of one (the Tyrrhenian case) and two continental blocks (the Aegean case) that undergo, in sequence, thrusting, burial and exhumation. The modeling shows that despite differences in structure between the two cases, the deformation mechanisms are fundamentally similar and can be described as follows. The accretion of a continental block at the trench beneath the suture zone begins with its burial to UHP-HP conditions and thrusting. Then the continental block is delaminated from its subducting lithosphere. During the subduction-accretion process, the angle of the subducting slab increases due to the buoyancy of the continental block. When the oceanic subduction resumes, the angle of the slab decreases to reach a steady-state position. The Aegean and Tyrrhenian scenarios diverge at this stage, due naturally to the differences of their accretion history. When continental accretion is followed by oceanic subduction only, the continental block that has been accreted and detached stays at close to the trench and does not undergo further deformation, despite the continuing rollback. The extensional deformation is located further within the overriding plate, resulting in continental breakup and the development of an oceanic basin, as in the Tyrrhenian domain. When the continental accretion is followed first by oceanic subduction and then by accretion of another continental block, however, the evolution of the subduction zone is

  1. Latest Cretaceous "A2-type" granites in the Sakarya Zone, NE Turkey: Partial melting of mafic lower crust in response to roll-back of Neo-Tethyan oceanic lithosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karsli, Orhan; Aydin, Faruk; Uysal, Ibrahim; Dokuz, Abdurrahman; Kumral, Mustafa; Kandemir, Raif; Budakoglu, Murat; Ketenci, Murat

    2018-03-01

    -derived magma followed by subsequent limited fractional crystallization to generate a variety of rock types. From integrating all available data with the regional tectonic evolution in the Sakarya Zone and adjacent regions, we attribute generation of aluminous A2-type granites to a back-arc extension in the subduction zone, which is induced by the roll-back of the Neo-Tethyan oceanic slab around 72 Ma. Consequently, we conclude that these A-type granites were related to intensive extension tectonic, which peaked during the late Cretaceous (Maastrichtian) in response to the roll-back of the Neo-Tethyan oceanic slab, which is indicative of the final-stage subduction-related magmatism in the Sakarya Zone.

  2. Preliminary three-dimensional model of mantle convection with deformable, mobile continental lithosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoshida, Masaki

    2010-06-01

    Characteristic tectonic structures such as young orogenic belts and suture zones in a continent are expected to be mechanically weaker than the stable part of the continental lithosphere with the cratonic root (or cratonic lithosphere) and yield lateral viscosity variations in the continental lithosphere. In the present-day Earth's lithosphere, the pre-existing, mechanically weak zones emerge as a diffuse plate boundary. However, the dynamic role of a weak (low-viscosity) continental margin (WCM) in the stability of continental lithosphere has not been understood in terms of geophysics. Here, a new numerical simulation model of mantle convection with a compositionally and rheologically heterogeneous, deformable, mobile continental lithosphere is presented for the first time by using three-dimensional regional spherical-shell geometry. A compositionally buoyant and highly viscous continental assemblage with pre-existing WCMs, analogous to the past supercontinent, is modeled and imposed on well-developed mantle convection whose vigor of convection, internal heating rate, and rheological parameters are appropriate for the Earth's mantle. The visco-plastic oceanic lithosphere and the associated subduction of oceanic plates are incorporated. The time integration of the advection of continental materials with zero chemical diffusion is performed by a tracer particle method. The time evolution of mantle convection after setting the model supercontinent is followed over 800 Myr. Earth-like continental drift is successfully reproduced, and the characteristic thermal interaction between the mantle and the continent/supercontinent is observed in my new numerical model. Results reveal that the WCM protects the cratonic lithosphere from being stretched by the convecting mantle and may play a significant role in the stability of the cratonic lithosphere during the geological timescale because it acts as a buffer that prevents the cratonic lithosphere from undergoing global

  3. Discovery of the early Jurassic Gajia mélange in the Bangong-Nujiang suture zone: Southward subduction of the Bangong-Nujiang Ocean?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lai, Wen; Hu, Xiumian; Zhu, Dicheng; An, Wei; Ma, Anlin

    2017-06-01

    Mélange records a series of geological processes associated with oceanic subduction and continental collision. This paper reports for the first time the presence of Early Jurassic mélange from NW Nagqu in the southern margin of the Bangong-Nujiang suture zone, termed as the Gajia mélange. It shows typically blocks-in-matrix structure with matrix of black shale and siliceous mudstone, and several centimeters to several meters sized blocks of sandstone, silicalite, limestone and basalt. The sandstone blocks consist of homologous sandstone and two types of exotic sandstone, with different modal compositions. The Group 1 of exotic sandstone blocks consists of mainly of feldspar and quartz, whereas the Group 2 is rich in volcanic detritus. The Group 3 of homologous sandstone blocks is rich in feldspar and volcanic detritus with rare occurrence of quartz. U-Pb age data and in situ Hf isotopic compositions of detrital zircons from sandstone blocks are similar to those from the Lhasa terrane, suggesting that the sandstone blocks in the Gajia mélange most probably came from the Lhasa terrane. The YC1σ(2+) age of homologous sandstone blocks is 177 ± 2.4 Ma, suggesting an Early Jurassic depositional age for the sandstones within the Gajia mélange. The Gajia mélange likely records the southward subduction of the Bangong-Nujiang Ocean during the Early Jurassic.

  4. Diapir versus along-channel ascent of crustal material during plate convergence: constrained by the thermal structure of subduction zones

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, M. Q.; Li, Z. H.

    2017-12-01

    Crustal rocks can be subducted to mantle depths, interact with the mantle wedge, and then exhume to the crustal depth again, which is generally considered as the mechanism for the formation of ultrahigh-pressure metamorphic rocks in nature. The crustal rocks undergo dehydration and melting at subarc depths, giving rise to fluids that metasomatize and weaken the overlying mantle wedge. There are generally two ways for the material ascent from subarc depths: one is along subduction channel; the other is through the mantle wedge by diapir. In order to study the conditions and dynamics of these contrasting material ascent modes, systematic petrological-thermo-mechanical numerical models are constructed with variable thicknesses of the overriding and subducting continental plates, ages of the subducting oceanic plate, as well as the plate convergence rates. The model results suggest that the thermal structures of subduction zones control the thermal condition and fluid/melt activity at the slab-mantle interface in subcontinental subduction channels, which further strongly affect the material transportation and ascent mode. Thick overriding continental plate and low-angle subduction style induced by young subducting oceanic plate both contribute to the formation of relatively cold subduction channels with strong overriding mantle wedge, where the along-channel exhumation occurs exclusively to result in the exhumation of HP-UHP metamorphic rocks. In contrast, thin overriding lithosphere and steep subduction style induced by old subducting oceanic plate are the favorable conditions for hot subduction channels, which lead to significant hydration and metasomatism, melting and weakening of the overriding mantle wedge and thus cause the ascent of mantle wedge-derived melts by diapir through the mantle wedge. This may corresponds to the origination of continental arc volcanism from mafic to ultramafic metasomatites in the bottom of the mantle wedge. In addition, the plate

  5. Lithospheric electrical structure of the middle Lhasa terrane in the south Tibetan plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, Hongda; Jin, Sheng; Wei, Wenbo; Gao, Rui; Ye, Gaofeng; Zhang, Letian; Yin, Yaotian; Lu, Zhanwu

    2018-04-01

    The Lhasa terrane in southern Tibetan plateau is a huge tectono-magmatic belt and an important metallogenic belt. Its formation evolution process and mineralization are affected by the subduction of oceanic plate and subsequent continental collision. However, the evolution of Lhasa terrane has been a subject of much debate for a long time. The Lithospheric structure records the deep processes of the subduction of oceanic plate and continental collision. The magnetotelluric (MT) method can probe the sub-surface electrical conductivity, newly dense broadband and long period magnetotelluric data were collected along a south-north trending profile that across the Lhasa terrane at 88°-89°E. Dimensionality analyses demonstrated that the MT data can be interpreted using two-dimensional approaches, and the regional strike direction was determined as N110°E.Based on data analysis results, a two-dimensional (2-D) resistivity model of crust and upper mantle was derived from inversion of the transverse electric mode, transverse magnetic mode and vertical magnetic field data. Inversion model shows a large north-dipping resistor that extended from the upper crust to upper mantle beneath the Himalaya and the south of Lhasa Terrane, which may represent the subducting Indian continental lithosphere. The 31°N may be an important boundary in the Lhasa Terrane, the south performs a prominent high-conductivity anomaly from the lower crust to upper mantle which indicates the existence of asthenosphere upwelling, while the north performs a higher resistivity and may have a reworking ancient basement. The formation of the ore deposits in the study area may be related to the upwelling of the mantle material triggered by slab tearing and/or breaking off of the Indian lithosphere, and the mantle material input also contributed the total thickness of the present-day Tibetan crust. The results provide helpful constrains to understand the mechanism of the continent-continent collision and

  6. Searching for conditions of observation of subduction seismogenic zone transients on Ocean Bottom Seismometers deployed at the Lesser Antilles submerged fore-arc

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bécel, Anne; Laigle, Mireille; Diaz, Jordi; Hirn, Alfred; Flueh, Ernst; Charvis, Philippe

    2010-05-01

    In the frame of the European Union « THALES WAS RIGHT » and French ANR CATTELL SUBSISMANTI funding, an unprecedented array of 80 OBS, Ocean Bottom Seismometers of Géoazur Nice, INSU/IPGP Paris, IfM-GEOMAR Kiel, AWI Bremerhaven could gathered. They have been deployed for continuous recording over four months on the fore-arc domain of the Lesser Antilles subduction zone offshore Martinique, Dominica, Guadeloupe and Antigua Islands, by scientific cruises of N/O ATALANTE, F/S M. A. MERIAN and N/O ANTEA. One of the aims of this OBS array was the feasibility study of detecting at sea-bottom the seismological part of recently discovered phenomena such as NVT non-volcanic tremors and LP, for Long-Period events. The ability of detecting such transient signals is of importance, since they are possibly related to potential mega-thrust earthquakes and their preparation zone. At the Lesser Antilles subduction zone, the fore-arc domain overlying the seismogenic part of the interplate is located offshore, covered by as much as 4000 m of water. In this case, transient signals can be accessible only from OBS observations. Hence, there is a major difference, in the sense of the instrumental and logistical effort, with the subductions under NW US-Canada and under Central Japan where these signals have been discovered. There, the subduction zones have an emerged fore-arc that has allowed the chance discovery of those phenomena by regular instrument maintained routinely on land. Over 20 of the instruments were BB-OBS, with broadband seismic sensors, possibly the largest such gathering at the time of the experiment among the OBS types. Among those broadband OBS designed or used by different Institutions, there were at least three different seismometer brands and acoustical sensors, as well as different mechanical mounting and technical solutions for coupling them to ground. This did not facilitate data recovery and processing, but on the other hand, as planned by interweaving the

  7. Geochemistry of serpentinites in subduction zones: A review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deschamps, Fabien; Godard, Marguerite; Guillot, Stéphane; Hattori, Kéiko

    2013-04-01

    Over the last decades, numerous studies have emphasized the role of serpentinites in the subduction zones geodynamics. Their presence and effective role in this environment is acknowledged notably by geophysical, geochemical and field observations of (paleo-) subduction zones. In this context, with the increasing amount of studies concerning serpentinites in subduction environments, a huge geochemical database was created. Here, we present a review of the geochemistry of serpentinites, based on the compilation of ~ 900 geochemical analyses of abyssal, mantle wedge and subducted serpentinites. The aim was to better understand the geochemical evolution of these rocks during their subduction history as well as their impact in the global geochemical cycle. When studying serpentinites, it is often a challenge to determine the nature of the protolith and their geological history before serpentinisation. The present-day (increasing) geochemical database for serpentinites indicates little to no mobility of incompatible elements at the scale of the hand-sample in most serpentinized peridotites. Thus, Rare Earth Elements (REE) distribution can be used to identify the initial protolith for abyssal and mantle wedge serpentinites, as well as magmatic processes such as melt/rock interactions taking place before serpentinisation. In the case of subducted serpentinites, the interpretation of trace element data is more difficult due to secondary enrichments independent of the nature of the protolith, notably in (L)REE. We propose that these enrichments reflect complex interactions probably not related to serpentinisation itself, but mostly to fluid/rock or sediment/rock interactions within the subduction channel, as well as intrinsic feature of the mantle protolith which could derive from the continental lithosphere exhumed at the ocean-continent transition. Additionally, during the last ten years, numerous studies have been carried out, notably using in situ approaches, to better

  8. Lithospheric processes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Baldridge, W. [and others

    2000-12-01

    The authors used geophysical, geochemical, and numerical modeling to study selected problems related to Earth's lithosphere. We interpreted seismic waves to better characterize the thickness and properties of the crust and lithosphere. In the southwestern US and Tien Shari, crust of high elevation is dynamically supported above buoyant mantle. In California, mineral fabric in the mantle correlate with regional strain history. Although plumes of buoyant mantle may explain surface deformation and magmatism, our geochemical work does not support this mechanism for Iberia. Generation and ascent of magmas remains puzzling. Our work in Hawaii constrains the residence of magma beneath Hualalai to be a few hundred to about 1000 years. In the crust, heat drives fluid and mass transport. Numerical modeling yielded robust and accurate predictions of these processes. This work is important fundamental science, and applies to mitigation of volcanic and earthquake hazards, Test Ban Treaties, nuclear waste storage, environmental remediation, and hydrothermal energy.

  9. Lithospheric processes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Baldridge, W.S.

    2000-01-01

    The authors used geophysical, geochemical, and numerical modeling to study selected problems related to Earth's lithosphere. We interpreted seismic waves to better characterize the thickness and properties of the crust and lithosphere. In the southwestern US and Tien Shari, crust of high elevation is dynamically supported above buoyant mantle. In California, mineral fabric in the mantle correlate with regional strain history. Although plumes of buoyant mantle may explain surface deformation and magmatism, our geochemical work does not support this mechanism for Iberia. Generation and ascent of magmas remains puzzling. Our work in Hawaii constrains the residence of magma beneath Hualalai to be a few hundred to about 1000 years. In the crust, heat drives fluid and mass transport. Numerical modeling yielded robust and accurate predictions of these processes. This work is important fundamental science, and applies to mitigation of volcanic and earthquake hazards, Test Ban Treaties, nuclear waste storage, environmental remediation, and hydrothermal energy

  10. Teaching Marine Geoscience at Sea: Integrated Ocean Drilling Program's School of Rock Explores Cascadia Subduction Zone - Cores, Logs, and ACORKs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reagan, M.; Collins, J.; Ludwig, K. A.; Slough, S.; Delaney, M. L.; Hovan, S. A.; Expedition 328 Scientists

    2010-12-01

    For twelve days this past September, seventeen formal and informal educators from the US, UK, and France joined six instructors and a small science party on the scientific drillship JOIDES Resolution for the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP)’s Cascadia ACORK Expedition. The educators were part of the annual “School of Rock (SOR)” education program. SOR is coordinated by the U.S. Implementing Organization (USIO) of IODP and is designed to engage participants in seagoing Earth systems research and education workshops onboard the JOIDES Resolution and on shore at the Gulf Coast Core Repository in Texas. The scientific objective of the Cascadia ACORK expedition was to install a new permanent hydrologic observatory at ODP Site 889 to provide long-term monitoring of the pressure at the frontal part of the Cascadia accretionary prism. This year’s SOR workshop focused on how cores, logs, and ACORKs shed light on the hydrology and geology of the Cascadia subduction zone in the Northeast Pacific. In addition to observing the deployment of the ACORK, the SOR participants conducted daily hands-on analyses of archived sediment and hard-rock cores with scientists and technicians who specialize in IODP research using the lab facilities on the ship. Throughout the expedition, participants engaged in different activities and lessons designed to explore the deep biosphere, methane hydrates, paleoceanography, sedimentology, biostratigraphy, seafloor spreading, and drilling technology. The workshop also provided participants with “C3” time; time to communicate their experience using the successful joidesresolution.org website and other tools, make connections to their prior knowledge and expertise, and to be creative in developing and planning new education and outreach activities based on their new knowledge and research. As part of participating in the expedition, participants committed to further developing and testing their education and outreach products after

  11. The subduction-accretion history of the Bangong-Nujiang Ocean: Constraints from provenance and geochronology of the Mesozoic strata near Gaize, central Tibet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Shun; Ding, Lin; Guilmette, Carl; Fu, Jiajun; Xu, Qiang; Yue, Yahui; Henrique-Pinto, Renato

    2017-04-01

    The Mesozoic strata, within the Bangong-Nujiang suture zone in central Tibet, recorded critical information about the subduction-accretion processes of the Bangong-Nujiang Ocean prior to the Lhasa-Qiangtang collision. This paper reports detailed field observations, petrographic descriptions, sandstone detrital zircon U-Pb ages and Hf isotopic analyses from an accretionary complex (preserved as Mugagangri Group) and the unconformably overlying Shamuluo Formation near Gaize. The youngest detrital zircon ages, together with other age constraints from literature, suggest that the Mugagangri Group was deposited during late Triassic-early Jurassic, while the Shamuluo Formation was deposited during late Jurassic-early Cretaceous. Based on the differences in lithology, age and provenance, the Mugagangri Group is subdivided into the upper, middle and lower subunits. These units are younging structurally downward/southward, consistent with models of progressive off-scrapping and accretion in a southward-facing subduction complex. The upper subunit, comprising mainly quartz-sandstone and siliceous mud/shale, was deposited in abyssal plain environment close to the Qiangtang passive margin during late Triassic, with sediments derived from the southern Qiangtang block. The middle and lower subunits comprise mainly lithic-quartz-sandstone and mud/shale, containing abundant ultramafic/ophiolitic fragments. The middle subunit, of late Triassic-early Jurassic age, records a transition in tectono-depositional setting from abyssal plain to trench-wedge basin, with sudden influx of sediments sourced from the central Qiangtang metamorphic belt and northern Qiangtang magmatic belt. The appearance of ultramafic/ophiolitic fragments in the middle subunit reflects the subduction initiation. The lower subunit was deposited in a trench-wedge basin during early Jurassic, with influx of Jurassic-aged zircons originating from the newly active southern Qiangtang magmatic arc. The lower subunit

  12. Using thermal and compositional modeling to assess the role of water in Alaskan flat slab subduction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinson, S. E.; Porter, R. C.; Hoisch, T. D.

    2017-12-01

    Although plate tectonic theory is well established in the geosciences, the mechanisms and details of various plate-tectonics related phenomena are not always well understood. In some ( 10%) convergent plate boundaries, subduction of downgoing oceanic plates is characterized by low angle geometries and is termed "flat slab subduction." The mechanism(s) driving this form of subduction are not well understood. The goal of this study is to explore the role that water plays in these flat slab subduction settings. This is important for a better understanding of the behavior of these systems and for assessing volcanic hazards associated with subduction and slab rollback. In southern Alaska, the Pacific Plate is subducting beneath the North American plate at a shallow angle. This low-angle subduction within the region is often attributed to the subduction of the Yakutat block, a terrane accreting to the south-central coast of Alaska. This flat slab region is bounded by the Aleution arc to the west and the strike-slip Queen Charlotte fault to the east. Temperature and compositional models for a 500-km transect across this subduction zone in Alaska were run for ten million years (the length of time that flat slab subduction has been ongoing in Alaska) and allow for interpretation of present-day conditions at depth. This allows for an evaluation of two hypotheses regarding the role of water in flat-slab regions: (1) slab hydration and dehydration help control slab buoyancy which influences whether flat slab subduction will be maintained or ended. (2) slab hydration/dehydration of the overlying lithosphere impacts deformation within the upper plate as water encourages plate deformation. Preliminary results from thermal modeling using Thermod8 show that cooling of the mantle to 500 °C is predicted down to 100 km depth at 10 million years after the onset of low-angle subduction (representing present-day). Results from compositional modeling in Perple_X show the maximum amount

  13. Earth's evolving subcontinental lithospheric mantle: inferences from LIP continental flood basalt geochemistry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greenough, John D.; McDivitt, Jordan A.

    2018-04-01

    Archean and Proterozoic subcontinental lithospheric mantle (SLM) is compared using 83 similarly incompatible element ratios (SIER; minimally affected by % melting or differentiation, e.g., Rb/Ba, Nb/Pb, Ti/Y) for >3700 basalts from ten continental flood basalt (CFB) provinces representing nine large igneous provinces (LIPs). Nine transition metals (TM; Fe, Mn, Sc, V, Cr, Co, Ni, Cu, Zn) in 102 primitive basalts (Mg# = 0.69-0.72) from nine provinces yield additional SLM information. An iterative evaluation of SIER values indicates that, regardless of age, CFB transecting Archean lithosphere are enriched in Rb, K, Pb, Th and heavy REE(?); whereas P, Ti, Nb, Ta and light REE(?) are higher in Proterozoic-and-younger SLM sources. This suggests efficient transfer of alkali metals and Pb to the continental lithosphere perhaps in association with melting of subducted ocean floor to form Archean tonalite-trondhjemite-granodiorite terranes. Titanium, Nb and Ta were not efficiently transferred, perhaps due to the stabilization of oxide phases (e.g., rutile or ilmenite) in down-going Archean slabs. CFB transecting Archean lithosphere have EM1-like SIER that are more extreme than seen in oceanic island basalts (OIB) suggesting an Archean SLM origin for OIB-enriched mantle 1 (EM1). In contrast, OIB high U/Pb (HIMU) sources have more extreme SIER than seen in CFB provinces. HIMU may represent subduction-processed ocean floor recycled directly to the convecting mantle, but to avoid convective homogenization and produce its unique Pb isotopic signature may require long-term isolation and incubation in SLM. Based on all TM, CFB transecting Proterozoic lithosphere are distinct from those cutting Archean lithosphere. There is a tendency for lower Sc, Cr, Ni and Cu, and higher Zn, in the sources for Archean-cutting CFB and EM1 OIB, than Proterozoic-cutting CFB and HIMU OIB. All CFB have SiO2 (pressure proxy)-Nb/Y (% melting proxy) relationships supporting low pressure, high % melting

  14. Spatial variations of effective elastic thickness of the Lithosphere in the Southeast Asia regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Xiaobin; Kirby, Jon; Yu, Chuanhai; Swain, Chris; Zhao, Junfeng

    2016-04-01

    The effective elastic thickness Te corresponds to the thickness of an idealized elastic beam that would bend similarly to the actual lithosphere under the same applied loads, and could provide important insight into rheology and state of stress. Thus, it is helpful to improve our understanding of the relationship between tectonic styles, distribution of earthquakes and lithospheric rheology in various tectonic settings. The Southeast Asia, located in the southeastern part of the Eurasian Plate, comprises a complex collage of continental fragments, volcanic arcs, and suture zones and marginal oceanic basins, and is surrounded by tectonically active margins which exhibit intense seismicity and volcanism. The Cenozoic southeastward extrusion of the rigid Indochina Block due to the Indo-Asian collision resulted in the drastic surface deformation in the western area. Therefore, a high resolution spatial variation map of Te might be a useful tool for the complex Southeast Asia area to examine the relationships between surface deformation, earthquakes, lithospheric structure and mantle dynamics. In this study, we present a high-resolution map of spatial variations of Te in the Southeast Asia area using the wavelet method, which convolves a range of scaled wavelets with the two data sets of Bouguer gravity anomaly and topography. The topography and bathymetry grid data was extracted from the GEBCO_08 Grid of GEBCO digital atlas. The pattern of Te variations agrees well with the tectonic provinces in the study area. On the whole, low lithosphere strength characterizes the oceanic basins, such as the South China Sea, the Banda sea area, the Celebes Sea, the Sulu Sea and the Andaman Sea. Unlike the oceanic basins, the continental fragments show a complex pattern of Te variations. The Khorat plateau and its adjacent area show strong lithosphere characteristics with a Te range of 20-50 km, suggesting that the Khorat plateau is the strong core of the Indochina Block. The West

  15. From opening to subduction of an oceanic domain constrained by LA-ICP-MS U-Pb zircon dating (Variscan belt, Southern Armorican Massif, France)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paquette, J.-L.; Ballèvre, M.; Peucat, J.-J.; Cornen, G.

    2017-12-01

    In the Variscan belt of Western Europe, the lifetime and evolution of the oceanic domain is poorly constrained by sparse, outdated and unreliable multigrain ID-TIMS U-Pb zircon dating. In this article, we present a complete in situ LA-ICP-MS dataset of about 300 U-Pb zircon analyses obtained on most of the ophiolitic and eclogitic outcrops of Southern Brittany, comprising new dating of previously published zircon populations and newly discovered rock samples. In situ dating and cathodo-luminescence imaging of each zircon grain yields new absolute time-constraints on the evolution of the Galicia-Moldanubian Ocean. The new results confirm that the opening of this oceanic domain is well defined at about 490 Ma. In contrast, the generally-quoted 400-410 Ma-age for the high-pressure event related to the subduction of the oceanic crust is definitely not recorded in the zircons of the eclogites. In light of these new data, we propose that the obduction of oceanic rocks occurred at about 370-380 Ma while the high-pressure event is recorded at 355 Ma in only a few zircon grains of some eclogite samples. Additionally, this large scale dating project demonstrates that the zircons from eclogites do not systematically recrystallise during the high pressure event and consequently their U-Pb systems do not record that metamorphism systematically. These zircons rather preserve the isotopic memory of the magmatic crystallization of their igneous protolith. Another example of an eclogite sample from the French Massif Central illustrates the frequent mistake in the interpretation of the ages of the early hydrothermal alteration of zircons in the oceanic crust versus partial or complete recrystallization during eclogite facies metamorphism.

  16. The Correlation Between Porosity, Density and Degree of Serpentinization in Ophiolites from Point Sal, California: Implications for Strength of Oceanic Lithosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karrasch, A. K.; Farough, A.; Lowell, R. P.

    2017-12-01

    Hydration and serpentinization of oceanic lithosphere influences its strength and behavior under stress. Serpentine content is the limiting factor in deformation and the correlation between crustal strength and the degree of serpentinization is not linear. Escartin et al., [2001] shows that the presence of only 10% serpentine results in a nominally non-dilatant mode of brittle deformation and reduces the strength of peridotites dramatically. In this study, we measured density and porosity of ophiolite samples from Point Sal, CA that had various degrees of serpentinization. The densities ranged between 2500- 3000 kg/m3 and porosities ranged between 2.1-4.8%. The degree of serpentinization was estimated from mineralogical analysis, and these data were combined with that of 4 other samples analyzed by Farough et al., [2016], which were obtained from various localities. The degree of serpentinization varied between 0.6 and 40%. We found that degree of serpentinization was inversely correlated with density with a slope of 7.25 (kg/m3)/%. Using Horen et al., [1996] models, estimated P-wave velocity of the samples ranged between 6.75-7.90 km/s and S-wave velocity ranged between 3.58-4.35 km/s. There were no distinguishable difference in the results between olivine-rich or pyroxene-rich samples. These results, along with correlations to strength and deformation style, can be used as a reference for mechanical properties of the crust at depth, analysis of deep drill cores and to estimate the rate of weakening of the oceanic crust after the onset of serpentinization reactions.

  17. Craton Heterogeneity in the South American Lithosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lloyd, S.; Van der Lee, S.; Assumpcao, M.; Feng, M.; Franca, G. S.

    2012-04-01

    We investigate structure of the lithosphere beneath South America using receiver functions, surface wave dispersion analysis, and seismic tomography. The data used include recordings from 20 temporary broadband seismic stations deployed across eastern Brazil (BLSP02) and from the Chile Ridge Subduction Project seismic array in southern Chile (CRSP). By jointly inverting Moho point constraints, Rayleigh wave group velocities, and regional S and Rayleigh wave forms we obtain a continuous map of Moho depth. The new tomographic Moho map suggests that Moho depth and Moho relief vary slightly with age within the Precambrian crust. Whether or not a correlation between crustal thickness and geologic age can be derived from the pre-interpolation point constraints depends strongly on the selected subset of receiver functions. This implies that using only pre-interpolation point constraints (receiver functions) inadequately samples the spatial variation in geologic age. We also invert for S velocity structure and estimate the depth of the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB) in Precambrian South America. The new model reveals a relatively thin lithosphere throughout most of Precambrian South America (< 140 km). Comparing LAB depth with lithospheric age shows they are overall positively correlated, whereby the thickest lithosphere occurs in the relatively small Saõ Francisco craton (200 km). However, within the larger Amazonian craton the younger lithosphere is thicker, indicating that locally even larger cratons are not protected from erosion or reworking of the lithosphere.

  18. A numerical model of mantle convection with deformable, mobile continental lithosphere within three-dimensional spherical geometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoshida, M.

    2010-12-01

    A new numerical simulation model of mantle convection with a compositionally and rheologically heterogeneous, deformable, mobile continental lithosphere is presented for the first time by using three-dimensional regional spherical-shell geometry (Yoshida, 2010, Earth Planet. Sci. Lett.). The numerical results revealed that one of major factor that realizes the supercontinental breakup and subsequent continental drift is a pre-existing, weak (low-viscosity) continental margin (WCM) in the supercontinent. Characteristic tectonic structures such as young orogenic belts and suture zones in a continent are expected to be mechanically weaker than the stable part of the continental lithosphere with the cratonic root (or cratonic lithosphere) and yield lateral viscosity variations in the continental lithosphere. In the present-day Earth's lithosphere, the pre-existing, mechanically weak zones emerge as a diffuse plate boundary. However, the dynamic role of the WCM in the stability of continental lithosphere has not been understood in terms of geophysics. In my numerical model, a compositionally buoyant and highly viscous continental assemblage with pre-existing WCMs, analogous to the past supercontinent, is modeled and imposed on well-developed mantle convection whose vigor of convection, internal heating rate, and rheological parameters are appropriate for the Earth's mantle. The visco-plastic oceanic lithosphere and the associated subduction of oceanic plates are incorporated. The time integration of the advection of continental materials with zero chemical diffusion is performed by a tracer particle method. The time evolution of mantle convection after setting the model supercontinent is followed over 800 Myr. Earth-like continental drift is successfully reproduced, and the characteristic thermal interaction between the mantle and the continent/supercontinent is observed in my new numerical model. Results reveal that the WCM protects the cratonic lithosphere from being

  19. The effect of a realistic thermal diffusivity on numerical model of a subducting slab

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maierova, P.; Steinle-Neumann, G.; Cadek, O.

    2010-12-01

    A number of numerical studies of subducting slab assume simplified (constant or only depth-dependent) models of thermal conductivity. The available mineral physics data indicate, however, that thermal diffusivity is strongly temperature- and pressure-dependent and may also vary among different mantle materials. In the present study, we examine the influence of realistic thermal properties of mantle materials on the thermal state of the upper mantle and the dynamics of subducting slabs. On the basis of the data published in mineral physics literature we compile analytical relationships that approximate the pressure and temperature dependence of thermal diffusivity for major mineral phases of the mantle (olivine, wadsleyite, ringwoodite, garnet, clinopyroxenes, stishovite and perovskite). We propose a simplified composition of mineral assemblages predominating in the subducting slab and the surrounding mantle (pyrolite, mid-ocean ridge basalt, harzburgite) and we estimate their thermal diffusivity using the Hashin-Shtrikman bounds. The resulting complex formula for the diffusivity of each aggregate is then approximated by a simpler analytical relationship that is used in our numerical model as an input parameter. For the numerical modeling we use the Elmer software (open source finite element software for multiphysical problems, see http://www.csc.fi/english/pages/elmer). We set up a 2D Cartesian thermo-mechanical steady-state model of a subducting slab. The model is partly kinematic as the flow is driven by a boundary condition on velocity that is prescribed on the top of the subducting lithospheric plate. Reology of the material is non-linear and is coupled with the thermal equation. Using the realistic relationship for thermal diffusivity of mantle materials, we compute the thermal and flow fields for different input velocity and age of the subducting plate and we compare the results against the models assuming a constant thermal diffusivity. The importance of the

  20. Numerical simulations of the mantle lithosphere delamination

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morency, C.; Doin, M.-P.

    2004-03-01

    overriding lithosphere of subduction zones.

  1. Seismic evidence of the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary beneath Izu-Bonin area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cui, H.; Gao, Y.; Zhou, Y.

    2016-12-01

    The lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB), separating the rigid lithosphere and the ductile asthenosphere layers, is the seismic discontinuity with the negative velocity contrast of the Earth's interior [Fischer et al., 2010]. The LAB has been also termed the Gutenberg (G) discontinuity that defines the top of the low velocity zone in the upper mantle [Gutenberg, 1959; Revenaugh and Jordan, 1991]. The seismic velocity, viscosity, resistivity and other physical parameters change rapidly with the depths across the boundary [Eaton et al., 2009]. Seismic detections on the LAB in subduction zone regions are of great help to understand the interactions between the lithosphere and asthenosphere layers and the geodynamic processes related with the slab subductions. In this study, the vertical broadband waveforms are collected from three deep earthquake events occurring from 2000 to 2014 with the focal depths of 400 600 km beneath the Izu-Bonin area. The waveform data is processed with the linear slant stack method [Zang and Zhou, 2002] to obtain the vespagrams in the relative travel-time to slowness domain and the stacked waveforms. The sP precursors reflected on the LAB (sLABP), which have the negative polarities with the amplitude ratios of 0.17 0.21 relative to the sP phases, are successfully extracted. Based on the one-dimensional modified velocity model (IASP91-IB), we obtain the distributions for six reflected points of the sLABP phases near the source region. Our results reveal that the LAB depths range between 58 and 65 km beneath the Izu-Bonin Arc, with the average depth of 62 km and the small topography of 7 km. Compared with the results of the tectonic stable areas in Philippine Sea [Kawakatsu et al., 2009; Kumar and Kawakatsu, 2011], the oceanic lithosphere beneath the Izu-Bonin Arc shows the obvious thinning phenomena. We infer that the lithospheric thinning is closely related with the partial melting, which is caused by the volatiles continuously released

  2. The Lithosphere-asthenosphere Boundary beneath the South Island of New Zealand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hua, J.; Fischer, K. M.; Savage, M. K.

    2017-12-01

    Lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB) properties beneath the South Island of New Zealand have been imaged by Sp receiver function common-conversion point stacking. In this transpressional boundary between the Australian and Pacific plates, dextral offset on the Alpine fault and convergence have occurred for the past 20 My, with the Alpine fault now bounded by Australian plate subduction to the south and Pacific plate subduction to the north. This study takes advantage of the long-duration and high-density seismometer networks deployed on or near the South Island, especially 29 broadband stations of the New Zealand permanent seismic network (GeoNet). We obtained 24,980 individual receiver functions by extended-time multi-taper deconvolution, mapping to three-dimensional space using a Fresnel zone approximation. Pervasive strong positive Sp phases are observed in the LAB depth range indicated by surface wave tomography (Ball et al., 2015) and geochemical studies. These phases are interpreted as conversions from a velocity decrease across the LAB. In the central South Island, the LAB is observed to be deeper and broader to the west of the Alpine fault. The deeper LAB to the west of the Alpine fault is consistent with oceanic lithosphere attached to the Australian plate that was partially subducted while also translating parallel to the Alpine fault (e.g. Sutherland, 2000). However, models in which the Pacific lithosphere has been underthrust to the west past the Alpine fault cannot be ruled out. Further north, a zone of thin lithosphere with a strong and vertically localized LAB velocity gradient occurs to the west of the fault, juxtaposed against a region of anomalously weak LAB conversions to the east of the fault. This structure, similar to results of Sp imaging beneath the central segment of the San Andreas fault (Ford et al., 2014), also suggests that lithospheric blocks with contrasting LAB properties meet beneath the Alpine fault. The observed variations in

  3. Asthenospheric and lithospheric sources for Mesozoic dolerites from Liberia (Africa): Trace element and isotopic evidence

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dupuy, C.; Marsh, J.

    1988-01-01

    Combined elemental, and Sr and Nd isotopic data are presented for Mesozoic dolerite dikes of Liberia (Africa) which are related to the initial stage of opening of the Atlantic Ocean. The large scatter of both trace element and isotopic data allows the identification of five groups of dolerites which cannot be related to each other by simple processes of mineral fractionation from a common source. On the contrary, the observed chemical and isotopic variation within some dolerites (Groups I and II) may result either from variable degrees of melting of an isotopically heterogeneous source or mixing between enriched and depleted oceanic type mantle. For the other dolerites (Groups III-V) mixing with a third mantle source with more radiogenic Sr and with element ratios characteristic of subduction environments is suggested. This third source is probably the subcontinental lithospheric mantle. Finally, no significant modification by interaction with continental crust is apparent in most of the analyzed samples. (orig.)

  4. Zircon Lu-Hf isotope systematics and U-Pb geochronology, whole-rock Sr-Nd isotopes and geochemistry of the early Jurassic Gokcedere pluton, Sakarya Zone-NE Turkey: a magmatic response to roll-back of the Paleo-Tethyan oceanic lithosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karsli, Orhan; Dokuz, Abdurrahman; Kandemir, Raif

    2017-05-01

    mantle material was supplied by the ascendance of a hot asthenosphere triggered by the roll-back of the Paleo-Tethyan oceanic lithosphere. The rising melts were accompanied by fractional crystallization and encountered no or minor crustal contamination en route to the surface. Taking into account these geochemical data and integrating them with regional geological evidence, we propose a slab roll-back model; this model suggests that the Gokcedere gabbroic pluton originated in a back-arc extensional environment associated with the southward subduction of the Paleo-Tethyan oceanic lithosphere during the early Jurassic period. Such an extensional event led to the opening of the northern branch of the Neotethys as a back-arc basin. Consequently, we conclude that the gabbroic pluton was related to intensive extensional tectonic events, which peaked during the early Jurassic in response to the roll-back of Paleo-Tethyan oceanic slab in the final stage of oceanic closure.

  5. Mantle hydration and Cl-rich fluids in the subduction forearc

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynard, Bruno

    2016-12-01

    In the forearc region, aqueous fluids are released from the subducting slab at a rate depending on its thermal state. Escaping fluids tend to rise vertically unless they meet permeability barriers such as the deformed plate interface or the Moho of the overriding plate. Channeling of fluids along the plate interface and Moho may result in fluid overpressure in the oceanic crust, precipitation of quartz from fluids, and low Poisson ratio areas associated with tremors. Above the subducting plate, the forearc mantle wedge is the place of intense reactions between dehydration fluids from the subducting slab and ultramafic rocks leading to extensive serpentinization. The plate interface is mechanically decoupled, most likely in relation to serpentinization, thereby isolating the forearc mantle wedge from convection as a cold, potentially serpentinized and buoyant, body. Geophysical studies are unique probes to the interactions between fluids and rocks in the forearc mantle, and experimental constrains on rock properties allow inferring fluid migration and fluid-rock reactions from geophysical data. Seismic velocities reveal a high degree of serpentinization of the forearc mantle in hot subduction zones, and little serpentinization in the coldest subduction zones because the warmer the subduction zone, the higher the amount of water released by dehydration of hydrothermally altered oceanic lithosphere. Interpretation of seismic data from petrophysical constrain is limited by complex effects due to anisotropy that needs to be assessed both in the analysis and interpretation of seismic data. Electrical conductivity increases with increasing fluid content and temperature of the subduction. However, the forearc mantle of Northern Cascadia, the hottest subduction zone where extensive serpentinization was first demonstrated, shows only modest electrical conductivity. Electrical conductivity may vary not only with the thermal state of the subduction zone, but also with time for

  6. The Lithosphere in Italy: Structure and Seismicity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brandmayr, Enrico; Blagoeva Raykova, Reneta; Zuri, Marco; Romanelli, Fabio; Doglioni, Carlo; Panza, Giuliano Francesco

    2010-07-01

    We propose a structural model for the lithosphere-asthenosphere system for the Italic region by means of the S-wave velocity (V S ) distribution with depth. To obtain the velocity structure the following methods are used in the sequence: frequency-time analysis (FTAN); 2D tomography (plotted on a grid 1 o x 1 o ); non-linear inversion; smoothing optimization method. The 3D V S structure (and its uncertainties) of the study region is assembled as a juxtaposition of the selected representative cellular models. The distribution of seismicity and heat flow is used as an independent constraint for the definition of the crustal and lithospheric thickness. The moment tensor inversion of recent damaging earthquakes which occurred in the Italic region is performed through a powerful non-linear technique and it is related to the different rheologic-mechanic properties of the crust and uppermost mantle. The obtained picture of the lithosphere-asthenosphere system for the Italic region confirms a mantle extremely vertically stratified and laterally strongly heterogeneous. The lateral variability in the mantle is interpreted in terms of subduction zones, slab dehydration, inherited mantle chemical anisotropies, asthenospheric upwellings, and so on. The western Alps and the Dinarides have slabs with low dip, whereas the Apennines show a steeper subduction. No evidence for any type of mantle plume is observed. The asymmetric expansion of the Tyrrhenian Sea, which may be interpreted as related to a relative eastward mantle flow with respect to the overlying lithosphere, is confirmed. (author)

  7. Numerical model of the transition from continental rifting to oceanization: the case study of the Ligure-Piemontese ocean.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roda, M.; Marotta, A. M.; Conte, K.; Spalla, M. I.

    2015-12-01

    The transition from continental rifting to oceanization has been investigated by mean of a 2D thermo-mechanical numerical model in which the formation of oceanic crust by mantle serpentinization, due to the hydration of the uprising peridotite, as been implemented. Model predictions have been compared with natural data related to the Permian-Triassic thinning affecting the continental lithosphere of the Alpine domain, in order to identify which portions of the present Alpine-Apennine system, preserving the imprints of Permian-Triassic high temperature (HT) metamorphism, is compatible, in terms of lithostratigraphy and tectono-metamorphic evolution, with a lithospheric extension preceding the opening of the Ligure-Piemontese oceanic basin. At this purpose age, petrological and structural data from the Alpine and Apennine ophiolite complexes are compared with model predictions from the oceanization stage. Our comparative analysis supports the thesis that the lithospheric extension preceding the opening of the Alpine Tethys did not start on a stable continental lithosphere, but developed by recycling part of the old Variscan collisional suture. The HT Permian-Triassic metamorphic re-equilibration overprints an inherited tectonic and metamorphic setting consequent to the Variscan subduction and collision, making the Alps a key case history to explore mechanisms responsible for the re-activation of orogenic scars.

  8. Continental lithospheric evolution: Constraints from the geochemistry of felsic volcanic rocks in the Dharwar Craton, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manikyamba, C.; Ganguly, Sohini; Saha, Abhishek; Santosh, M.; Rajanikanta Singh, M.; Subba Rao, D. V.

    2014-12-01

    Felsic magmatism associated with ocean-ocean and ocean-continent subduction processes provide important evidence for distinct episodes of crust-generation and continental lithospheric evolution. Rhyolites constitute an integral component of the tholeiitic to calc-alkaline basalt-andesite-dacite-rhyolite (BADR) association and contribute to crustal growth processes at convergent plate margins. The evolution of the Dharwar Craton of southern peninsular India during Meso- to Neoarchean times was marked by extensive development of greenstone belts. These granite-greenstone terranes have distinct volcano-sedimentary associations consistent with their geodynamic setting. The present study deals with geochemistry of rhyolites from the Chitradurga-Shimoga greenstone belts of western (WDC) and the Gadwal-Kadiri greenstone belts of eastern (EDC) sectors of Dharwar Craton to compare and evaluate their petrogenesis and geodynamic setting and their control on the continental lithospheric evolution of the Dharwar Craton. At a similar range of SiO2, Al2O3, Fe2O3, the rhyolites of WDC are more potassic, whereas the EDC rhyolites are more sodic and less magnesian with slight increase in TiO2. Minor increase in MgO content of WDC rhyolites reflects their ferromagnesian trace elements which are comparatively lower in the rhyolites of EDC. The relative enrichment in LILE (K, Rb) and depletion in HFSE (Nb, Ta, Zr, Hf) marked by negative Nb-Ta, Zr-Hf and Ti anomalies endorse the convergent margin processes for the generation of rhyolites of both the sectors of Dharwar Craton. The high silica potassic rhyolites of Shimoga and Chitradurga greenstone belts of WDC showing prominent negative Eu and Ti anomalies, flat HREE patterns correspond to Type 3 rhyolites and clearly point towards their generation and emplacement in an active continental margin environment. The geochemical characteristics of Gadwal and Kadiri rhyolites from eastern Dharwar Craton marked by aluminous compositions with

  9. Subduction zone guided waves in Northern Chile

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garth, Thomas; Rietbrock, Andreas

    2016-04-01

    Guided wave dispersion is observed in subduction zones as high frequency energy is retained and delayed by low velocity structure in the subducting slab, while lower frequency energy is able to travel at the faster velocities associated with the surrounding mantle material. As subduction zone guided waves spend longer interacting with the low velocity structure of the slab than any other seismic phase, they have a unique capability to resolve these low velocity structures. In Northern Chile, guided wave arrivals are clearly observed on two stations in the Chilean fore-arc on permanent stations of the IPOC network. High frequency (> 5 Hz) P-wave arrivals are delayed by approximately 2 seconds compared to the low frequency (young subducting lithosphere also has the potential to carry much larger amounts of water to the mantle than has previously been appreciated.

  10. Geodynamic inversion to constrain the non-linear rheology of the lithosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baumann, T. S.; Kaus, Boris J. P.

    2015-08-01

    One of the main methods to determine the strength of the lithosphere is by estimating it's effective elastic thickness. This method assumes that the lithosphere is a thin elastic plate that floats on the mantle and uses both topography and gravity anomalies to estimate the plate thickness. Whereas this seems to work well for oceanic plates, it has given controversial results in continental collision zones. For most of these locations, additional geophysical data sets such as receiver functions and seismic tomography exist that constrain the geometry of the lithosphere and often show that it is rather complex. Yet, lithospheric geometry by itself is insufficient to understand the dynamics of the lithosphere as this also requires knowledge of the rheology of the lithosphere. Laboratory experiments suggest that rocks deform in a viscous manner if temperatures are high and stresses low, or in a plastic/brittle manner if the yield stress is exceeded. Yet, the experimental results show significant variability between various rock types and there are large uncertainties in extrapolating laboratory values to nature, which leaves room for speculation. An independent method is thus required to better understand the rheology and dynamics of the lithosphere in collision zones. The goal of this paper is to discuss such an approach. Our method relies on performing numerical thermomechanical forward models of the present-day lithosphere with an initial geometry that is constructed from geophysical data sets. We employ experimentally determined creep-laws for the various parts of the lithosphere, but assume that the parameters of these creep-laws as well as the temperature structure of the lithosphere are uncertain. This is used as a priori information to formulate a Bayesian inverse problem that employs topography, gravity, horizontal and vertical surface velocities to invert for the unknown material parameters and temperature structure. In order to test the general methodology

  11. Teleseismic P-wave tomography of the Sunda-Banda Arc subduction zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, C. W.; Miller, M. S.; Widiyantoro, S.; Supendi, P.; O'Driscoll, L.; Roosmawati, N.; Porritt, R.

    2017-12-01

    The Sunda-Banda Arc is the site of multiple ongoing tectonic deformation processes and is perhaps the best example of the transition from subduction of oceanic lithosphere to an active arc-continent collision. Investigating the mantle structure that has resulted from the collision of continental Australia, as well as the concurrent phenomena of continental subduction, slab-rollback, lithospheric tearing, and subduction polarity reversal is possible through seismic tomography. While both regional scale and global tomographic models have previously been constructed to study the tectonics this region, here we use 250 seismic stations that span the length of this convergent margin to invert for P-wave velocity perturbations in the upper mantle. We combine data from a temporary deployment of 30 broadband instruments as part of the NSF-funded Banda Arc Project, along with data from permanent broadband stations maintained by the Meteorological, Climatological, and Geophysical Agency of Indonesia (BMKG) to image mantle structure, in particular the subducted Indo-Australian plate. The BMKG dataset spans 2009-2017 and includes >200 broadband seismometers. The Banda Arc array (network YS) adds coverage and resolution to southeastern Indonesia and Timor-Leste, where few permanent seismometers are located but the Australian continent-Banda Arc collision is most advanced. The preliminary model was computed using 50,000 teleseismic P-wave travel-time residuals and 3D finite frequency sensitivity kernels. Results from the inversion of the combined dataset are presented as well as resolution tests to assess the quality of the model. The velocity model shows an arcuate Sunda-Banda slab with morphological changes along strike that correlate with the tectonic collision. The model also features the double-sided Molucca Sea slab and regions of high velocity below the bottom of the transition zone. The resolution added by the targeted USC deployment is clear when comparing models that

  12. Probing the Cypriot Lithosphere: Insights from Broadband Seismology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ogden, C. S.; Bastow, I. D.; Pilidou, S.; Dimitriadis, I.; Iosif, P.; Constantinou, C.; Kounoudis, R.

    2017-12-01

    Cyprus, an island in the eastern Mediterranean Sea, is an ideal study locale for understanding both the final stages of subduction, and the internal structure of so-called `ophiolites' - rare, on-land exposures of oceanic crust. The Troodos ophiolite offers an excellent opportunity to interrogate a complete ophiolite sequence from mantle rocks to pillow lavas. However, determining its internal architecture, and that of the subducting African plate deep below it, cannot be easily achieved using traditional field geology. To address this issue, we have built a new network of five broadband seismograph stations across the island. These, along with existing permanent stations, record both local and teleseismic earthquakes that we are now using to image Cyprus' crust and mantle seismic structure. Receiver functions are time series, computed from three-component seismograms, which contain information about lithospheric seismic discontinuities. When a P-wave strikes a velocity discontinuity such as the Moho, energy is converted to S-waves (direct Ps phase). The widely-used H-K Stacking technique utilises this arrival, and subsequent crustal reverberations (PpPs and PsPs+PpSs), to calculate crustal thickness (H) and bulk-crustal Vp/Vs ratio (K). Central to the method is the assumption that the Moho produces the largest amplitude conversions, after the direct P-arrival, which is valid where the Moho is sharp. Where the Moho is gradational or upper crustal discontinuities are present, the Moho signals are weakened and masked by shallow crustal conversions, potentially rendering the H-K stacking method unreliable. Using a combination of synthetic and observed seismograms, we explore Cyprus' crustal structure and, specifically, the reliability of the H-K method in constraining it. Data quality is excellent across the island, but the receiver function Ps phase amplitude is low, and crustal reverberations are almost non-existent. Therefore, a simple, abrupt wavespeed jump at the

  13. Early Cretaceous Na-rich granitoids and their enclaves in the Tengchong Block, SW China: Magmatism in relation to subduction of the Bangong-Nujiang Tethys ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Ren-Zhi; Lai, Shao-Cong; Santosh, M.; Qin, Jiang-Feng; Zhao, Shao-Wei

    2017-08-01

    The Na-rich intermediate-to-felsic granitic rocks provide insights into the generation of magmas in subduction zones. This paper presents zircon LA-ICP-MS U-Pb ages as well as whole-rock geochemical, mineral chemical, and in situ zircon Hf isotopic data on Na-rich granitic rocks from the Tengchong Block, SW China. The granodiorites and associated mafic magmatic enclaves (MMEs) from the Menglian batholith yield zircon U-Pb ages of 116.1 ± 0.8 to 117.8 ± 0.6 Ma and 117.7 ± 0.7 Ma, respectively. Both host granodiorites and enclaves show calc-alkaline and sodium-rich nature, enrichment in large-ion lithophile elements (LILEs), and variable depletion in zircon Hf isotopic compositions. Euhedral amphiboles in both granodiorites and associated enclaves are magnesian-hornblende with high Mg and Ca and contain euhedral plagioclase inclusions of labradorite to andesine (An36-57) composition. The granodiorite was most likely derived through the mixing of partial melts derived from juvenile basaltic lower crust and a minor evolved component of ancient crustal sources. The quartz monzodiorite-granodiorites and associated MMEs from the Xiaotang-Mangdong batholith yield zircon U-Pb ages of 120.3 ± 1.3 to 122.6 ± 0.8 Ma and 120.7 ± 1.5 Ma. These rocks are also sodium-rich and show calc-alkaline trend with negative zircon Hf isotopic compositions (- 5.55 to + 0.58). The MMEs in the host intrusions are monzogabbro with variable and depleted zircon Hf isotopic compositions. The amphiboles in the both host intrusions and the enclaves show Al-rich ferro-tschermakite composition. We infer that the quartz monzodiorite-granodiorites were derived from magmas generated by the melting of ancient basaltic rocks in the lower arc crust induced by the underplating of mantle-derived mafic magmas. The formation of the different types of Na-rich granitic rocks is correlated to the subduction of Bangong-Nujiang Tethyan ocean. A comparison with magmatism in the northern magmatic belt suggests

  14. S-Wave's Velocities of the Lithosphere-Asthenosphere System in the Caribbean Region

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gonzalez, O'Leary; Alvarez, Jose Leonardo; Moreno, Bladimir; Panza, Giuliano F.

    2010-06-01

    An overview of the S-wave velocity (Vs) structural model of the Caribbean is presented with a resolution of 2 o x2 o . As a result of the frequency time analysis (FTAN) of more than 400 trajectories epicenter-stations in this region, new tomographic maps of Rayleigh waves group velocity dispersion at periods ranging from 10 s to 40 s have been determined. For each 2 o x2 o cell, group velocity dispersion curves were determined and extended to 150 s adding data from a larger scale tomographic study (Vdovin et al., 1999). Using, as independent a priori information, the available geological and geophysical data of the region, each dispersion curve has been mapped, by non-linear inversion, into a set of Vs vs. depth models in the depth range from 0 km to 300 km. Due to the non-uniqueness of the solutions for each cell a Local Smoothness Optimization (LSO) has been applied to the whole region to identify a tridimensional model of Vs vs. depth in cells of 2 o x2 o , thus satisfying the Occam razor concept. Through these models some main features of the lithosphere and asthenosphere are evidenced, such as: the west directed subduction zone of the eastern Caribbean region with a clear mantle wedge between the Caribbean lithosphere and the subducted slab; the complex and asymmetric behavior of the crustal and lithospheric thickness in the Cayman ridge; the diffused presence of oceanic crust in the region; the presence of continental type crust in the South America, Central America and North America plates, as well as the bottom of the upper asthenosphere that gets shallower going from west to east. (author)

  15. Extreme Hf-Os Isotope Compositions in Hawaiian Peridotite Xenoliths: Evidence for an Ancient Recycled Lithosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bizimis, M.; Lassiter, J. C.; Salters, V. J.; Sen, G.; Griselin, M.

    2004-12-01

    ) melt depletion event recorded by both the low 187Os/186Os and high 176Hf/177Hf ratios in the SLC peridotites can be explained with two different scenarios. First, the SLC peridotites may represent ancient depleted lithosphere that survived subduction, remained "rafting" in the upper mantle and is now sampled beneath Oahu. However, the lack of such unradiogenic Os isotopes in both MORBs and abyssal peridotites suggests that such peridotites are rare in the upper mantle and makes their exclusive presence under Oahu a rather fortuitous coincidence. Alternatively, the SLC peridotites may represent ancient depleted recycled lithosphere brought up by the Hawaiian plume. A recycled oceanic crust origin has been previously invoked for the Koolau shield lavas. It is then conceivable that fragments of the lithospheric portion of that subducted package have remained coupled with the oceanic crust and are being brought up by the plume from the deep, but because they were previously depleted, these peridotites contribute minimally, if at all, to Hawaiian volcanism. The presence of microdiamonds and majoritic garnets in some SLC pyroxenites also corroborates a deep origin. In this case, the SLC peridotites represent the first-ever direct evidence that subducted material actually makes it back on the surface, essentially closing the subduction cycle.

  16. Magma-derived CO2 emissions in the Tengchong volcanic field, SE Tibet: Implications for deep carbon cycle at intra-continent subduction zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Maoliang; Guo, Zhengfu; Sano, Yuji; Zhang, Lihong; Sun, Yutao; Cheng, Zhihui; Yang, Tsanyao Frank

    2016-09-01

    Active volcanoes at oceanic subduction zone have long been regard as important pathways for deep carbon degassed from Earth's interior, whereas those at continental subduction zone remain poorly constrained. Large-scale active volcanoes, together with significant modern hydrothermal activities, are widely distributed in the Tengchong volcanic field (TVF) on convergent boundary between the Indian and Eurasian plates. They provide an important opportunity for studying deep carbon cycle at the ongoing intra-continent subduction zone. Soil microseepage survey based on accumulation chamber method reveals an average soil CO2 flux of ca. 280 g m-2 d-1 in wet season for the Rehai geothermal park (RGP). Combined with average soil CO2 flux in dry season (ca. 875 g m-2 d-1), total soil CO2 output of the RGP and adjacent region (ca. 3 km2) would be about 6.30 × 105 t a-1. Additionally, we conclude that total flux of outgassing CO2 from the TVF would range in (4.48-7.05) × 106 t a-1, if CO2 fluxes from hot springs and soil in literature are taken into account. Both hot spring and soil gases from the TVF exhibit enrichment in CO2 (>85%) and remarkable contribution from mantle components, as indicated by their elevated 3He/4He ratios (1.85-5.30 RA) and δ13C-CO2 values (-9.00‰ to -2.07‰). He-C isotope coupling model suggests involvement of recycled organic metasediments and limestones from subducted Indian continental lithosphere in formation of the enriched mantle wedge (EMW), which has been recognized as source region of the TVF parental magmas. Contamination by crustal limestone is the first-order control on variations in He-CO2 systematics of volatiles released by the EMW-derived melts. Depleted mantle and recycled crustal materials from subducted Indian continental lithosphere contribute about 45-85% of the total carbon inventory, while the rest carbon (about 15-55%) is accounted by limestones in continental crust. As indicated by origin and evolution of the TVF

  17. MODELING OF MOVING DEFORMABLE CONTINENTS BY ACTIVE TRACERS: CLOSING AND OPENING OF OCEANS, RECIRCULATION OF OCEANIC CRUST

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. V. Bobrov

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The evolution of the ‘mantle – moving deformable continents’ system has been studied by numerical experiments. The continents move self-consistently with the mantle flows of thermo-compositional convection. Our model (two-dimensional mantle convection, non-Newtonian rheology, the presence of deformable continents demonstrates the main features of global geodynamics: convergence and divergence of continents; appearance and disappearance of subduction zones; backrolling of subduction zones; restructuring of mantle flows; stretching, breakup and divergence of continents; opening and closing of oceans; oceanic crust recirculation in the mantle, and overriding of hot mantle plumes by continents. In our study, the continental crust is modeled by active markers which transfer additional viscosity and buoyancy, while the continental lithosphere is marked only by increased viscosity with neutral buoyancy. The oceanic crust, in its turn, is modeled by active markers that have only an additional buoyancy. The principal result of our modeling is a consistency between the numerical calculations and the bimodal dynamics of the real Earth: the oceanic crust, despite its positive buoyancy near the surface, submerges in subduction zones and sinks deep into the mantle. (Some part of the oceanic crust remains attached to the continental margins for a long time. In contrast to the oceanic crust, the continental crust does not sink in subduction zones. The continental lithosphere, despite its neutral buoyancy, also remains on the surface due to its viscosity and coupling with the continental crust. It should be noted that when a continent overrides a subduction zone, the subduction zone disappears, and the flows in the mantle are locally reorganized. The effect of basalt-eclogite transition in the oceanic crust on the mantle flow pattern and on the motion of continents has been studied. Our numerical experiments show that the inclusion of this effect in the

  18. The influence of tectonic inheritance on crustal extension style following failed subduction of continental crust: applications to metamorphic core complexes in Papua New Guinea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biemiller, J.; Ellis, S. M.; Little, T.; Mizera, M.; Wallace, L. M.; Lavier, L.

    2017-12-01

    The structural, mechanical and geometric evolution of rifted continental crust depends on the lithospheric conditions in the region prior to the onset of extension. In areas where tectonic activity preceded rift initiation, structural and physical properties of the previous tectonic regime may be inherited by the rift and influence its development. Many continental rifts form and exhume metamorphic core complexes (MCCs), coherent exposures of deep crustal rocks which typically surface as arched or domed structures. MCCs are exhumed in regions where the faulted upper crust is displaced laterally from upwelling ductile material along a weak detachment fault. Some MCCs form during extensional inversion of a subduction thrust following failed subduction of continental crust, but the degree to which lithospheric conditions inherited from the preceding subduction phase control the extensional style in these systems remains unclear. For example, the Dayman Dome in Southeastern Papua New Guinea exposes prehnite-pumpellyite to greenschist facies rocks in a smooth 3 km-high dome exhumed with at least 24 km of slip along one main detachment normal fault, the Mai'iu Fault, which dips 21° at the surface. The extension driving this exhumation is associated with the cessation of northward subduction of Australian continental crust beneath the oceanic lithosphere of the Woodlark Plate. We use geodynamic models to explore the effect of pre-existing crustal structures inherited from the preceding subduction phase on the style of rifting. We show that different geometries and strengths of inherited subduction shear zones predict three distinct modes of subsequent rift development: 1) symmetric rifting by newly formed high-angle normal faults; 2) asymmetric rifting along a weak low-angle detachment fault extending from the surface to the brittle-ductile transition; and 3) extension along a rolling-hinge structure which exhumes deep crustal rocks in coherent rounded exposures. We

  19. Blueschist facies fault tectonites from the western margin of the Siberian Craton: Implications for subduction and exhumation associated with early stages of the Paleo-Asian Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Likhanov, Igor I.; Régnier, Jean-Luc; Santosh, M.

    2018-04-01

    The tectonic evolution of the Siberian Cratonic margins offers important clues for global paleogeographic reconstructions, particularly with regard to the complex geological history of Central Asia. The Yenisey Ridge fold-and-thrust belt at the western margin of the Siberian Craton forms part of the Central Asian Orogenic Belt (CAOB) and is a key to understand the Precambrian tectonic evolution of the Siberian Craton and crustal growth in the CAOB, the world's largest Phanerozoic accretionary orogenic belt. Here we report for the first time, the occurrence of glaucophane schist relics in tectonites within the Yenisey shear zone which provides insights on Chilean-type convergent boundary. We present results from isotope geochronology (SHRIMP zircon analysis and mica 40Ar/39Ar dating), coupled with P-T calculations derived from conventional geothermobarometry and pseudosections in the system NCKFMASH that suggest two superimposed metamorphic events. During the first stage, glaucophane schists formed at around 640-620 Ma at P-T conditions of 8-10 kbar and 400-450 °C. In the second stage, the rocks experienced dynamic metamorphism (c. 600 Ma) at 11-15 kbar/550-640 °C. The differences in P-T parameters between weakly deformed rocks and intensely deformed tectonites and P-T paths suggest distinct tectonic processes. Geochemical features of the mafic tectonites suggest N-MORB and E-MORB affinity, and the zircon U-Pb ages suggest formation of the protoliths at 701.6 ± 8.4. The sequence of spreading, subduction and shear deformation identified in our study correlate with the early stages of development of the Paleo-Asian Ocean at the western margin of the Siberian Craton and supports the spatial proximity of Siberia and Laurentia at 700-600 Ma, as proposed for the Late Neoproterozoic paleogeographic reconstructions and as robustly constrained from large igneous province (LIP) record.

  20. Magmatic tectonic effects of high thermal regime at the site of active ridge subduction: the Chile Triple Junction model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lagabrielle, Yves; Guivel, Christèle; Maury, René C.; Bourgois, Jacques; Fourcade, Serge; Martin, Hervé

    2000-11-01

    High thermal gradients are expected to be found at sites of subduction of very young oceanic lithosphere and more particularly at ridge-trench-trench (RTT) triple junctions, where active oceanic spreading ridges enter a subduction zone. Active tectonics, associated with the emplacement of two main types of volcanic products, (1) MORB-type magmas, and (2) calc-alkaline acidic magmas in the forearc, also characterize these plate junction domains. In this context, MORB-type magmas are generally thought to derive from the buried active spreading center subducted at shallow depths, whereas the origin of calc-alkaline acidic magmas is more problematic. One of the best constrained examples of ridge-trench interaction is the Chile Triple Junction (CTJ) located southwest of the South American plate at 46°12'S, where the active Chile spreading center enters the subduction zone. In this area, there is a clear correlation between the emplacement of magmatic products and the migration of the triple junction along the active margin. The CTJ lava population is bimodal, with mafic to intermediate lavas (48-56% SiO 2) and acidic lavas ranging from dacites to rhyolites (66-73% SiO 2). Previous models have shown that partial melting of oceanic crust plus 10-20% of sediments, leaving an amphibole- and plagioclase-rich residue, is the only process that may account for the genesis of acidic magmas. Due to special plate geometry in the CTJ area, a given section of the margin may be successively affected by the passage of several ridge segments. We emphasize that repeated passages will lead to the development of very high thermal gradients allowing melting of rocks of oceanic origin at temperatures of 800-900°C and low pressures, corresponding to depths of 10-20 km depth only. In addition, the structure of the CTJ forearc domain is dominated by horizontal displacements and tilting of crustal blocks along a network of strike-slip faults. The occurrence of such a deformed domain implies

  1. Using natural laboratories and modeling to decipher lithospheric rheology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sobolev, Stephan

    2013-04-01

    observations for the DSB can be explained within the classical pull-apart model assuming that (1) the lithosphere has been thermally eroded at about 20 Ma, just before the active faulting at the DST, and (2) the uppermost mantle in the region have relatively weak rheology consistent with the experimental data for wet olivine or pyroxenite. Another example is modeling of the collision of India and Eurasia in Tibet. Our recent thermo-mechanical model (see abstract by Tympel et al) reproduce well many important features of this orogeny, including observed convergence and distance of underthrusting of Indian lithosphere beneath Tibet, if long-term friction at India-Eurasia interface is about 0.04- 0.05, which is typical for oceanic subduction zones, but is unexpected low for continental setting.

  2. Mesozoic strike-slip movement of the Dunhua-Mishan Fault Zone in NE China: A response to oceanic plate subduction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Cheng; Zhu, Guang; Zhang, Shuai; Gu, Chengchuan; Li, Yunjian; Su, Nan; Xiao, Shiye

    2018-01-01

    The NE-striking Dunhua-Mishan Fault Zone (DMFZ) is one of two branches of the continental-scale sinistral Tan-Lu Fault Zone in NE China. The field data presented here indicate that the ca. 1000 km long DMFZ records two phases of sinistral faulting. The structures produced by these two phases of faulting include NE-SW-striking ductile shear belts and brittle faults, respectively. Mylonite-hosted microstructures and quartz c-axis fabrics suggest deformation temperatures of 450 °C-500 °C for the ductile shear belts. Combining new zircon U-Pb dates for 14 igneous rock samples analyzed during this study with the geology of this region indicates these shear belts formed during the earliest Early Cretaceous. This phase of sinistral displacement represents the initial formation of the DMFZ in response to the northward propagation of the Tan-Lu Fault Zone into NE China. A phase of Early Cretaceous rifting was followed by a second phase of sinistral faulting at 102-96 Ma, as evidenced by our new U-Pb ages for associated igneous rocks. Combining our new data with the results of previous research indicates that the DFMZ records a four-stage Cretaceous evolutionary history, where initial sinistral faulting at the beginning of the Early Cretaceous gave way to rifting during the rest of the Early Cretaceous. This was followed by a second phase of sinistral faulting at the beginning of the Late Cretaceous and a second phase of local rifting during the rest of the Late Cretaceous. The Cretaceous evolution of the DMFZ records the synchronous tectonic evolution of the NE China continent bordering the Pacific Ocean. Two phases of regional N-S compression generated the two phases of sinistral faulting within the DMFZ, whereas two-stage regional extension generated the two phases of rifting. The two compressive events were the result of the rapid low-angle subduction of the Izanagi and Pacific plates, whereas the two-stage extension was caused by the roll-back of these respective

  3. Neogene subduction beneath Java, Indonesia: Slab tearing and changes in magmatism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cottam, Michael; Hall, Robert; Cross, Lanu; Clements, Benjamin; Spakman, Wim

    2010-05-01

    Java is a Neogene calc-alkaline volcanic island arc formed by the northwards subduction of the Indo-Australian Plate beneath Sundaland, the continental core of SE Asia. The island has a complex history of volcanism and displays unusual subduction characteristics. These characteristics are consistent with the subduction of a hole in the down going slab that was formed by the arrival of a buoyant oceanic plateau at the trench. Subduction beneath Java began in the Eocene. However, the position and character of the calc-alkaline arc has changed over time. An older Paleogene arc ceased activity in the Early Miocene. Volcanic activity resumed in the Late Miocene producing a younger arc to the north of the older arc, and continues to the present day. An episode of Late Miocene thrusting at about 7 Ma is observed throughout Java and appears to be linked to northward movement of the arc. Arc rocks display typical calc-alkaline characteristics and reflect melting of the mantle wedge and subducted sediments associated with high fluid fluxes. Between West Java and Bali the present arc-trench gap is unusually wide at about 300 km. Seismicity identifies subducted Indian Ocean lithosphere that dips north at about 20° between the trench and the arc and then dips more steeply at about 60-70° from 100 to 600 km depth. In East Java there is gap in seismicity between about 250 and 500 km. Seismic tomography shows that this gap is not an aseismic section of the subduction zone but a hole in the slab. East Java is also unusual in the presence of K-rich volcanoes, now inactive, to the north of the calc-alkaline volcanoes of the active arc. In contrast to the calc-alkaline volcanism of the main arc, these K-rich melts imply lower fluid fluxes and a different mantle source. We suggest that all these observations can be explained by the tearing of the subducting slab when a buoyant oceanic plateau arrived at the trench south of East Java at about 8 Ma. With the slab unable to subduct

  4. Global thermal models of the lithosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cammarano, F.; Guerri, M.

    2017-12-01

    Unraveling the thermal structure of the outermost shell of our planet is key for understanding its evolution. We obtain temperatures from interpretation of global shear-velocity (VS) models. Long-wavelength thermal structure is well determined by seismic models and only slightly affected by compositional effects and uncertainties in mineral-physics properties. Absolute temperatures and gradients with depth, however, are not well constrained. Adding constraints from petrology, heat-flow observations and thermal evolution of oceanic lithosphere help to better estimate absolute temperatures in the top part of the lithosphere. We produce global thermal models of the lithosphere at different spatial resolution, up to spherical-harmonics degree 24, and provide estimated standard deviations. We provide purely seismic thermal (TS) model and hybrid models where temperatures are corrected with steady-state conductive geotherms on continents and cooling model temperatures on oceanic regions. All relevant physical properties, with the exception of thermal conductivity, are based on a self-consistent thermodynamical modelling approach. Our global thermal models also include density and compressional-wave velocities (VP) as obtained either assuming no lateral variations in composition or a simple reference 3-D compositional structure, which takes into account a chemically depleted continental lithosphere. We found that seismically-derived temperatures in continental lithosphere fit well, overall, with continental geotherms, but a large variation in radiogenic heat is required to reconcile them with heat flow (long wavelength) observations. Oceanic shallow lithosphere below mid-oceanic ridges and young oceans is colder than expected, confirming the possible presence of a dehydration boundary around 80 km depth already suggested in previous studies. The global thermal models should serve as the basis to move at a smaller spatial scale, where additional thermo-chemical variations

  5. A tectonic model reconciling evidence for the collisions between India, Eurasia and intra-oceanic arcs of the central-eastern Tethys

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Gibbons, A.D.; Zahirovic, S.; Müller, R.D.; Whittaker, J.M.; Yatheesh, V.

    , the Shyok and Khardung volcanics (Thakur, 1990) and the overlying Saltoro flysch, which contains upper Cretaceous to Eocene fossils (Bhutani et al., 2009). Strike-slip motion along the Karakoram Fault transported the Shyok Volcanics southward and adjacent..., possibly developing after subduction of a NeoTethyan spreading centre, following India’s rapid northward motion in the mid Cretaceous (Rolland et al., 2002). A weak zone of transitional crust between oceanic and continental lithosphere may have initiated...

  6. a New Animation of Subduction Processes for Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, R. J.; Lieu, W. K.; Mantey, A.; Ward, A.; Todd, F.; Farrar, E.; Sean, M.; Windler, J.

    2015-12-01

    The subduction of oceanic lithosphere beneath convergent plate margins is a fundamental plate tectonic concept and an important Earth process. It is responsible for some of Earth's most dangerous natural hazards including earthquakes and volcanic eruptions but also produced the continental crust and important mineral deposits. A range of geoscientific efforts including NSF MARGINS and GeoPRISMS initiatives have advanced our understanding of subduction zone processes. In spite the importance of subduction zones and our advancing understanding of how these function, there are few animations that clearly explain the subduction process to non-expert audiences. This deficiency reflects the disparate expertises between geoscientists who know the science but have weak animation skills and digital artists and animators who have strong skills in showing objects in motion but are not experts in natural processes like plate tectonics. This transdisciplinary gap can and should be bridged. With a small grant from NSF (DUE-1444954) we set about to generate a realistic subduction zone animation aimed at the university undergraduate audience by first working within our university to rough out a draft animation and then contract a professional to use this to construct the final version. UTD Geosciences faculty (Stern) and graduate student (Lieu) teamed up with faculty from UTD School of Arts, Technology, and Emerging Communication (ATEC)(Farrar, Fechter, and McComber) to identify and recruit talented ATEC undergraduate students (Mantey, Ward) to work on the project. Geoscientists assembled a storyboard and met weekly with ATEC undergraduates to generate a first draft of the animation, which guided development of an accompanying narrative. The draft animation with voice-over was then handed off to professional animator Windler (Archistration CG) to generate the final animation. We plan to show both the student-generated draft version and the final animation during our presentation

  7. A record of spontaneous subduction initiation in the Izu-Bonin-Mariana arc

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Arculus, Richard J.; Ishizuka, Osamu; Bogus, Kara A.; Gurnis, Michael; Hickey-Vargas, Rosemary; Aljahdali, Mohammed H.; Bandini-Maeder, Alexandre N.; Barth, Andrew P.; Brandl, Philipp A.; Drab, Laureen; Do Monte Guerra, Rodrigo; Hamada, Morihisa; Jiang, Fuqing; Kanayama, Kyoko; Kender, Sev; Kusano, Yuki; Li, He; Loudin, Lorne C.; Maffione, Marco; Marsaglia, Kathleen M.; McCarthy, Anders; Meffre, Sebastién; Morris, Antony; Neuhaus, Martin; Savov, Ivan P.; Sena, Clara; Tepley, Frank J.; Van Der Land, Cees; Yogodzinski, Gene M.; Zhang, Zhaohui

    2015-01-01

    The initiation of tectonic plate subduction into the mantle is poorly understood. If subduction is induced by the push of a distant mid-ocean ridge or subducted slab pull, we expect compression and uplift of the overriding plate. In contrast, spontaneous subduction initiation, driven by subsidence

  8. From continental to oceanic rifting in the Gulf of California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrari, Luca; Bonini, Marco; Martín, Arturo

    2017-11-01

    The continental margin of northwestern Mexico is the youngest example of the transition from a convergent plate boundary to an oblique divergent margin that formed the Gulf of California rift. Subduction of the Farallon oceanic plate during the Cenozoic progressively brought the East Pacific Rise (EPR) toward the North America trench. In this process increasingly younger and buoyant oceanic lithosphere entered the subduction zone until subduction ended just before most of the EPR could collide with the North America continental lithosphere. The EPR segments bounding the unsubducted parts of the Farallón plate remnants (Guadalupe and Magdalena microplates) also ceased spreading (Lonsdale, 1991) and a belt of the North American plate (California and Baja California Peninsula) became coupled with the Pacific Plate and started moving northwestward forming the modern Gulf of California oblique rift (Nicholson et al., 1994; Bohannon and Parsons, 1995). The timing of the change from plate convergence to oblique divergence off western Mexico has been constrained at the middle Miocene (15-12.5 Ma) by ocean floor morphology and magnetic anomalies as well as plate tectonic reconstructions (Atwater and Severinghaus, 1989; Stock and Hodges, 1989; Lonsdale, 1991), although the onset of transtensional deformation and the amount of right lateral displacement within the Gulf region are still being studied (Oskin et al., 2001; Fletcher et al., 2007; Bennett and Oskin, 2014). Other aspects of the formation of the Gulf of California remain not well understood. At present the Gulf of California straddles the transition from continental transtension in the north to oceanic spreading in the south. Seismic reflection-refraction data indicate asymmetric continent-ocean transition across conjugate margins of rift segments (González-Fernández et al., 2005; Lizarralde et al., 2007; Miller and Lizarralde, 2013; Martín-Barajas et al., 2013). The asymmetry may be related to crustal

  9. Slab Geometry and Segmentation on Seismogenic Subduction Zone; Insight from gravity gradients

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saraswati, A. T.; Mazzotti, S.; Cattin, R.; Cadio, C.

    2017-12-01

    Slab geometry is a key parameter to improve seismic hazard assessment in subduction zones. In many cases, information about structures beneath subduction are obtained from geophysical dedicated studies, including geodetic and seismic measurements. However, due to the lack of global information, both geometry and segmentation in seismogenic zone of many subductions remain badly-constrained. Here we propose an alternative approach based on satellite gravity observations. The GOCE (Gravity field and steady-state Ocean Circulation Explorer) mission enables to probe Earth deep mass structures from gravity gradients, which are more sensitive to spatial structure geometry and directional properties than classical gravitational data. Gravity gradients forward modeling of modeled slab is performed by using horizontal and vertical gravity gradient components to better determine slab geophysical model rather than vertical gradient only. Using polyhedron method, topography correction on gravity gradient signal is undertaken to enhance the anomaly signal of lithospheric structures. Afterward, we compare residual gravity gradients with the calculated signals associated with slab geometry. In this preliminary study, straightforward models are used to better understand the characteristic of gravity gradient signals due to deep mass sources. We pay a special attention to the delineation of slab borders and dip angle variations.

  10. How large is the subducted water flux? New constraints on mantle regassing rates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parai, R.; Mukhopadhyay, S.

    2012-02-01

    Estimates of the subducted water (H2O) flux have been used to discuss the regassing of the mantle over Earth history. However, these estimates vary widely, and some are large enough to have reduced the volume of water in the global ocean by a factor of two over the Phanerozoic. In light of uncertainties in the hydration state of subducting slabs, magma production rates and mantle source water contents, we use a Monte Carlo simulation to set limits on long-term global water cycling and the return flux of water to the deep Earth. Estimates of magma production rates and water contents in primary magmas generated at ocean islands, mid-ocean ridges, arcs and back-arcs are paired with estimates of water entering trenches via subducting oceanic slab in order to construct a model of the deep Earth water cycle. The simulation is constrained by reconstructions of Phanerozoic sea level change, which suggest that ocean volume is near steady-state, though a sea level decrease of up to 360 m may be supported. We provide limits on the return flux of water to the deep Earth over the Phanerozoic corresponding to a near steady-state exosphere (0-100 meter sea level decrease) and a maximum sea level decrease of 360 m. For the near steady-state exosphere, the return flux is 1.4 - 2.0- 0.3+ 0.4 × 1013 mol/yr, corresponding to 2-3% serpentinization in 10 km of lithospheric mantle. The return flux that generates the maximum sea level decrease over the Phanerozoic is 3.5- 0.3+ 0.4 × 1013 mol/yr, corresponding to 5% serpentinization in 10 km of lithospheric mantle. Our estimates of the return flux of water to the mantle are up to 7 times lower than previously suggested. The imbalance between our estimates of the return flux and mantle output flux leads to a low rate of increase in bulk mantle water content of up to 24 ppm/Ga.

  11. Seismic tomographic constraints on plate-tectonic reconstructions of Nazca subduction under South America since late Cretaceous (˜80 Ma)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Y. W.; Wu, J.; Suppe, J.

    2017-12-01

    within the Nazca slab. These intra-slab velocity anomalies provide the most complete tomographic evidence to date in support the classic, but still controversial hypothesis of subducted, relatively buoyant oceanic lithosphere features along the Andean margin.

  12. Evolution of passive continental margins and initiation of subduction zones

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cloetingh, Sierd

    1982-01-01

    The initiation of subduction is a key element in plate tectonic schemes for the evolution of the Earth's lithosphere. Nevertheless, up to present, the underlying mechanism has not been very well understood (e.g. Dickinson and Seely, 1979; Hager, 1980; Kanamori, 1980). The insight into the initiation

  13. Evolution of passive continental margins and initiation of subduction zones

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cloetingh, S.A.P.L.

    1982-01-01

    The initiation of subduction is a key element in plate tectonic schemes for the evolution of the Earth's lithosphere. Nevertheless, up to present, the underlying mechanism has not been very well understood (e.g. Dickinson and Seely, 1979; Hager, 1980; Kanamori, 1980). The insight into the

  14. S-wave velocities of the lithosphere-asthenosphere system in the Lesser Antilles from the joint inversion of surface wave dispersion and receiver function analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    González, O'Leary; Clouard, Valerie; Tait, Stephen; Panza, Giuliano F.

    2018-06-01

    We present an overview of S-wave velocities (Vs) within the crust and upper mantle of the Lesser Antilles as determined with 19 seismic broadband stations. Receiver functions (RF) have been computed from teleseismic recordings of earthquakes, and Rayleigh wave group velocity dispersion relations have been taken from earlier surface wave tomographic studies in the Caribbean area. Local smoothness optimization (LSO) procedure has been applied, combined with an H-K stacking method, the spatial distribution of hypocenters of local earthquakes and of the energy they released, in order to identify an optimum 1D model of Vs below each station. Several features of the Caribbean plate and its interaction with the Atlantic subducting slab are visible in the resulting models: (a) relatively thick oceanic crust below these stations ranges from 21 km to 33 km, being slight thinner in the middle of the island arc; (b) crustal low velocity zones are present below stations SABA, SEUS, SKI, SMRT, CBE, DSD, GCMP and TDBA; (c) lithospheric thickness range from 40 km to 105 km but lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary was not straightforward to correlate between stations; (d) the aseismic mantle wedge between the Caribbean seismic lithosphere and the subducted slab varies in thickness as well as Vs values which are, in general, lower below the West of Martinique than below the West of Guadeloupe; (e) the depth of the subducted slab beneath the volcanic arc, appears to be greater to the North, and relatively shallower below some stations (e.g. DLPL, SAM, BIM and FDF) than was estimated in previous studies based on the depth-distribution of seismicity; f) the WBZ is >10-15 km deeper than the top of the slab below the Central Lesser Antilles (Martinique and Dominica) where the presence of partial melt in the mantle wedge seems also to be more evident.

  15. Nature of the basement of the East Anatolian plateau: Implications for the lithospheric foundering processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Topuz, G.; Candan, O.; Zack, T.; Yılmaz, A.

    2017-12-01

    The East Anatolian Plateau (Turkey) is characterized by (1) an extensive volcanic-sedimentary cover of Neogene to Quaternary age, (2) crustal thicknesses of 42-50 km, and (3) an extremely thinned lithospheric mantle. Its basement beneath the young cover is thought to consist of oceanic accretionary complexes of Late Cretaceous to Oligocene age. The attenuated state of the lithospheric mantle and the causes of the young volcanism are accounted for by slab steepening and subsequent break-off. We present field geological, petrological and geochronological data on three basement inliers (Taşlıçay, Akdağ and Ilıca) in the region. These areas are made up of amphibolite- to granulite-facies rocks, comprising marble, amphibolite, metapelite, quartzite and metagranite. The granulite-facies domain is equilibrated at 0.7 GPa and 800 ˚C at 83 ± 2 Ma (2σ). The metamorphic rocks are intruded by subduction-related coeval gabbroic, quartz monzonitic to tonalitic rocks. Both the metamorphic rocks and the intrusions are tectonically overlain by ophiolitic rocks. All these crystalline rocks are unconformably overlain by lower Maastrichtien clastic rocks and reefal limestone, suggesting that the exhumation at the earth's surface and juxtaposition with ophiolitic rocks occurred by early Maastrichtien. U-Pb dating on igneous zircon from metagranite yielded a protolith age of 445 ± 10 Ma (2σ). The detrital zircons from a metaquartzite point to Neoproterozoic to Early Paleozoic provenance. All these data favor a more or less continuous continental substrate to the allochthonous ophiolitic rocks beneath the young volcanic-sedimentary cover. The metamorphism and coeval magmatism can be regarded as the middle- to lower-crustal root of the Late Cretaceous magmatic arc that developed due to northward subduction along the Bitlis-Zagros suture. The presence of a continental basement beneath the young cover requires that the loss of the lithospheric mantle from beneath the East

  16. The Subduction of an Exhumed and Serpentinized Magma-Poor Basement Beneath the Northern Lesser Antilles Reveals the Early Tectonic Fabric at Slow-Spreading Mid-Oceanic Ridges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marcaillou, B.; Klingelhoefer, F.; Laurencin, M.; Biari, Y.; Graindorge, D.; Jean-Frederic, L.; Laigle, M.; Lallemand, S.

    2017-12-01

    Multichannel and wide-angle seismic data as well as heat-flow measurements (ANTITHESIS cruise, 2016) reveal a 200x200km patch of magma-poor oceanic basement in the trench and beneath the outer fore-arc offshore of Antigua to Saint Martin in the Northern Lesser Antilles. These data highlight an oceanic basement with the following features: 1/ Absence of any reflection at typical Moho depth and layer2/layer3 limit depths. 2/ High Velocity Vp at the top (>5.5 km/s), low velocity gradient with depth (serpentinized at the slow-spreading mid-Atlantic Ridge 80 Myr ago, is currently subducting beneath the Northern Lesser Antilles. During the exhumation, early extension triggers penetrative shear zones sub-parallel to the ridge and to the transform fault. Eventually, this early extension generates sliding along the so-called detachment fault, while the other proto-detachment abort. Approaching the trench, the plate bending reactivates these weak zones in normal faults and fluid pathways promoting deep serpentinisation and localizing tectonic deformation at the plate interface. These subducting fluid-rich mechanically weak mantle rocks rise questions about their relation to the faster slab deepening, the lower seismic activity and the pervasive tectonic partitioning in this margin segment.

  17. A tale of two arcs? Plate tectonics of the Izu-Bonin-Mariana (IBM) arc using subducted slab constraints

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, J. E.; Suppe, J.; Renqi, L.; Kanda, R. V. S.

    2014-12-01

    Published plate reconstructions typically show the Izu-Bonin Marianas arc (IBM) forming as a result of long-lived ~50 Ma Pacific subduction beneath the Philippine Sea. These reconstructions rely on the critical assumption that the Philippine Sea was continuously coupled to the Pacific during the lifetime of the IBM arc. Because of this assumption, significant (up to 1500 km) Pacific trench retreat is required to accommodate the 2000 km of Philippine Sea/IBM northward motion since the Eocene that is constrained by paleomagnetic data. In this study, we have mapped subducted slabs of mantle lithosphere from MITP08 global seismic tomography (Li et al., 2008) and restored them to a model Earth surface to constrain plate tectonic reconstructions. Here we present two subducted slab constraints that call into question current IBM arc reconstructions: 1) The northern and central Marianas slabs form a sub-vertical 'slab wall' down to maximum 1500 km depths in the lower mantle. This slab geometry is best explained by a near-stationary Marianas trench that has remained +/- 250 km E-W of its present-day position since ~45 Ma, and does not support any significant Pacific slab retreat. 2) A vanished ocean is revealed by an extensive swath of sub-horizontal slabs at 700 to 1000 km depths in the lower mantle below present-day Philippine Sea to Papua New Guinea. We call this vanished ocean the 'East Asian Sea'. When placed in an Eocene plate reconstruction, the East Asian Sea fits west of the reconstructed Marianas Pacific trench position and north of the Philippine Sea plate. This implies that the Philippine Sea and Pacific were not adjacent at IBM initiation, but were in fact separated by a lost ocean. Here we propose a new IBM arc reconstruction constrained by subducted slabs mapped under East Asia. At ~50 Ma, the present-day IBM arc initiated at equatorial latitudes from East Asian Sea subduction below the Philippine Sea. A separate arc was formed from Pacific subduction below

  18. Testing the effects of basic numerical implementations of water migration on models of subduction dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quinquis, M. E. T.; Buiter, S. J. H.

    2014-06-01

    Subduction of oceanic lithosphere brings water into the Earth's upper mantle. Previous numerical studies have shown how slab dehydration and mantle hydration can impact the dynamics of a subduction system by allowing a more vigorous mantle flow and promoting localisation of deformation in the lithosphere and mantle. The depths at which dehydration reactions occur in the hydrated portions of the slab are well constrained in these models by thermodynamic calculations. However, computational models use different numerical schemes to simulate the migration of free water. We aim to show the influence of the numerical scheme of free water migration on the dynamics of the upper mantle and more specifically the mantle wedge. We investigate the following three simple migration schemes with a finite-element model: (1) element-wise vertical migration of free water, occurring independent of the flow of the solid phase; (2) an imposed vertical free water velocity; and (3) a Darcy velocity, where the free water velocity is a function of the pressure gradient caused by the difference in density between water and the surrounding rocks. In addition, the flow of the solid material field also moves the free water in the imposed vertical velocity and Darcy schemes. We first test the influence of the water migration scheme using a simple model that simulates the sinking of a cold, hydrated cylinder into a dry, warm mantle. We find that the free water migration scheme has only a limited impact on the water distribution after 1 Myr in these models. We next investigate slab dehydration and mantle hydration with a thermomechanical subduction model that includes brittle behaviour and viscous water-dependent creep flow laws. Our models demonstrate that the bound water distribution is not greatly influenced by the water migration scheme whereas the free water distribution is. We find that a bound water-dependent creep flow law results in a broader area of hydration in the mantle wedge, which

  19. Testing the effects of the numerical implementation of water migration on models of subduction dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quinquis, M. E. T.; Buiter, S. J. H.

    2013-10-01

    Subduction of oceanic lithosphere brings water into Earth's upper mantle. Previous numerical studies have shown how slab dehydration and mantle hydration can impact the dynamics of a subduction system by allowing a more vigorous mantle flow and promoting localisation of deformation in lithosphere and mantle. The depths at which dehydration reactions occur in the hydrated portions of the slab are well constrained in these models by thermodynamic calculations. However, the mechanism by which free water migrates in the mantle is incompletely known. Therefore, models use different numerical schemes to model the migration of free water. We aim to show the influence of the numerical scheme of free water migration on the dynamics of the upper mantle and more specifically the mantle wedge. We investigate the following three migration schemes with a finite-element model: (1) element-wise vertical migration of free water, occurring independent of the material flow; (2) an imposed vertical free water velocity; and (3) a Darcy velocity, where the free water velocity is calculated as a function of the pressure gradient between water and the surrounding rocks. In addition, the material flow field also moves the free water in the imposed vertical velocity and Darcy schemes. We first test the influence of the water migration scheme using a simple Stokes flow model that simulates the sinking of a cold hydrated cylinder into a hot dry mantle. We find that the free water migration scheme has only a limited impact on the water distribution after 1 Myr in these models. We next investigate slab dehydration and mantle hydration with a thermomechanical subduction model that includes brittle behaviour and viscous water-dependent creep flow laws. Our models show how the bound water distribution is not greatly influenced by the water migration scheme whereas the free water distribution is. We find that a water-dependent creep flow law results in a broader area of hydration in the mantle

  20. Subduction and exhumation of a continental margin in the Scandinavian Caledonides: Insights from ultrahigh pressure metamorphism, late orogenic basins and 3D numerical modelling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuthbert, Simon

    2017-04-01

    The Scandinavian Caledonides (SC) represents a plate collision zone of Himalayan style and scale. Three fundamental characteristics of this orogen are: (1) early foreland-directed, tectonic transport and stacking of nappes; (2) late, wholesale reversal of tectonic transport; (3) ultrahigh pressure metamorphism of felsic crust derived from the underthrusting plate at several levels in the orogenic wedge and below the main thrust surface, indicating subduction of continental crust into the mantle. The significance of this for crustal evolution is the profound remodeling of continental crust, direct geochemical interaction of such crust and the mantle and the opening of accommodation space trapping large volumes of clastic detritus within the orogen. The orogenic wedge of the SC was derived from the upper crust of the Baltica continental margin (a hyper-extended passive margin), plus terranes derived from an assemblage of outboard arcs and intra-oceanic basins and, at the highest structural level, elements of the Laurentian margin. Nappe emplacement was driven by Scandian ( 430Ma) collision of Baltica with Laurentia, but emerging Middle Ordovician ages for diamond-facies metamorphism for the most outboard (or rifted) elements of Baltica suggest prior collision with an arc or microcontinent. Nappes derived from Baltica continental crust were subducted, in some cases to depths sufficient to form diamond. These then detached from the upper part of the down-going plate along major thrust faults, at which time they ceased to descend and possibly rose along the subduction channel. Subduction of the remaining continental margin continued below these nappes, possibly driven by slab-pull of the previously subducted Iapetus oceanic lithosphere and metamorphic densification of subducted felsic continental margin. 3D numerical modelling based upon a Caledonide-like plate scenario shows that if a continental corner or promontory enters the subduction zone, the continental margin

  1. 3-D subduction dynamics in the western Pacific: Mantle pressure, plate kinematics, and dynamic topography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holt, A. F.; Royden, L.; Becker, T. W.; Faccenna, C.

    2017-12-01

    While it is well established that the slab pull of negatively buoyant oceanic plates is the primary driving force of plate tectonics, the dynamic "details" of subduction have proved difficult to pin down. We use the Philippine Sea Plate region of the western Pacific as a site to explore links between kinematic observables (e.g. topography and plate motions) and the dynamics of the subduction system (e.g. mantle flow, mantle pressure). To first order, the Philippine Sea Plate can be considered to be the central plate of a double slab system containing two slabs that dip in the same direction, to the west. This subduction configuration presents the opportunity to explore subduction dynamics in a setting where two closely spaced slabs interact via subduction-induced mantle flow and stresses transmitted through the intervening plate. We use a 3-D numerical approach (e.g. Holt et al., 2017), augmented by semi-analytical models (e.g. Jagoutz et al., 2017), to develop relationships between dynamic processes and kinematic properties, including plate velocities, lithospheric stress state, slab dip angles, and topography. When combined with subduction zone observables, this allows us to isolate the first order dynamic processes that are in operation in the Philippine Sea Plate region. Our results suggest that positive pressure build-up occurs in the asthenosphere between the two slabs (Izu-Bonin-Mariana and Ryukyu-Nankai), and that this is responsible for producing much of the observed kinematic variability in the region, including the steep dip of the Pacific slab at the Izu-Bonin-Mariana trench, as compared to the flat dip of the Pacific slab north of Japan. We then extend our understanding of the role of asthenospheric pressure to examine the forces responsible for the plate kinematics and dynamic topography of the entire Western Pacific subduction margin(s). References:Holt, A. F., Royden, L. H., Becker, T. W., 2017. Geophys. J. Int., 209, 250-265Jagoutz, O., Royden, L

  2. Permeability Barrier Generation in the Martian Lithosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schools, Joe; Montési, Laurent

    2015-11-01

    Permeability barriers develop when a magma produced in the interior of a planet rises into the cooler lithosphere and crystallizes more rapidly than the lithosphere can deform (Sparks and Parmentier, 1991). Crystallization products may then clog the porous network in which melt is propagating, reducing the permeability to almost zero, i.e., forming a permeability barrier. Subsequent melts cannot cross the barrier. Permeability barriers have been useful to explain variations in crustal thickness at mid-ocean ridges on Earth (Magde et al., 1997; Hebert and Montési, 2011; Montési et al., 2011). We explore here under what conditions permeability barriers may form on Mars.We use the MELTS thermodynamic calculator (Ghiorso and Sack, 1995; Ghiorso et al., 2002; Asimow et al., 2004) in conjunction with estimated Martian mantle compositions (Morgan and Anders, 1979; Wänke and Dreibus, 1994; Lodders and Fegley, 1997; Sanloup et al., 1999; Taylor 2013) to model the formation of permeability barriers in the lithosphere of Mars. In order to represent potential past and present conditions of Mars, we vary the lithospheric thickness, mantle potential temperature (heat flux), oxygen fugacity, and water content.Our results show that permeability layers can develop in the thermal boundary layer of the simulated Martian lithosphere if the mantle potential temperature is higher than ~1500°C. The various Martian mantle compositions yield barriers in the same locations, under matching variable conditions. There is no significant difference in barrier location over the range of accepted Martian oxygen fugacity values. Water content is the most significant influence on barrier development as it reduces the temperature of crystallization, allowing melt to rise further into the lithosphere. Our lower temperature and thicker lithosphere model runs, which are likely the most similar to modern Mars, show no permeability barrier generation. Losing the possibility of having a permeability

  3. Modelling the interplate domain in thermo-mechanical simulations of subduction: Critical effects of resolution and rheology, and consequences on wet mantle melting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arcay, Diane

    2017-08-01

    The present study aims at better deciphering the different mechanisms involved in the functioning of the subduction interplate. A 2D thermo-mechanical model is used to simulate a subduction channel, made of oceanic crust, free to evolve. Convergence at constant rate is imposed under a 100 km thick upper plate. Pseudo-brittle and non-Newtonian behaviours are modelled. The influence of the subduction channel strength, parameterized by the difference in activation energy between crust and mantle (ΔEa) is investigated to examine in detail the variations in depth of the subduction plane down-dip extent, zcoup . First, simulations show that numerical resolution may be responsible for an artificial and significant shallowing of zcoup if the weak crustal layer is not correctly resolved. Second, if the age of the subducting plate is 100 Myr, subduction occurs for any ΔEa . The stiffer the crust is, that is, the lower ΔEa is, the shallower zcoup is (60 km depth if ΔEa = 20 kJ/mol) and the hotter the fore-arc base is. Conversely, imposing a very weak subduction channel (ΔEa > 135 J/mol) leads there to an extreme mantle wedge cooling and inhibits mantle melting in wet conditions. Partial kinematic coupling at the fore-arc base occurs if ΔEa = 145 kJ/mol. If the incoming plate is 20 Myr old, subduction can occur under the conditions that the crust is either stiff and denser than the mantle, or weak and buoyant. In the latter condition, cold crust plumes rise from the subduction channel and ascend through the upper lithosphere, triggering (1) partial kinematic coupling under the fore-arc, (2) fore-arc lithosphere cooling, and (3) partial or complete hindrance of wet mantle melting. zcoup then ranges from 50 to more than 250 km depth and is time-dependent if crust plumes form. Finally, subduction plane dynamics is intimately linked to the regime of subduction-induced corner flow. Two different intervals of ΔEa are underlined: 80-120 kJ/mol to reproduce the range of slab

  4. A Paleozoic Japan-type subduction-accretion system in the Beishan orogenic collage, southern Central Asian Orogenic Belt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Dongfang; Xiao, Wenjiao; Windley, Brian F.; Han, Chunming; Tian, Zhonghua

    2015-05-01

    Magmatic arcs ascribed to oceanic lithosphere subduction played a dominant role in the construction of the accretionary Central Asian Orogenic Belt (CAOB). The Beishan orogenic collage, situated between the Tianshan Orogen to the west and the Inner Mongolia Orogen to the east, is a key area to understanding the subduction and accretionary processes of the southern CAOB. However, the nature of magmatic arcs in the Beishan and the correlation among different tectonic units along the southern CAOB are highly ambiguous. In order to investigate the subduction-accretion history of the Beishan and put a better spatial and temporal relationship among the tectonic belts along the southern CAOB, we carried out detailed field-based structural geology and LA-ICP-MS zircon U-Pb geochronological as well as geochemical studies along four cross-sections across crucial litho-tectonic units in the central segment of the Beishan, mainly focusing on the metamorphic assemblages and associated plutons and volcanic rocks. The results show that both the plutonic and volcanic rocks have geochemical characteristics similar to those of subduction-related rocks, which favors a volcanic arc setting. Zircons from all the plutonic rocks yield Phanerozoic ages and the plutons have crystallization ages ranging from 464 ± 2 Ma to 398 ± 3 Ma. Two volcanic-sedimentary rocks yield zircons with a wide age range from Phanerozoic to Precambrian with the youngest age peaks at 441 Ma and 446 Ma, estimated to be the time of formation of the volcanic rocks. These new results, combined with published data on ophiolitic mélanges from the central segment of the Beishan, favor a Japan-type subduction-accretion system in the Cambrian to Carboniferous in this part of the Paleo-Asian Ocean. The Xichangjing-Niujuanzi ophiolite probably represents a major suture zone separating different tectonic units across the Beishan orogenic collage, while the Xiaohuangshan-Jijitaizi ophiolitic mélange may represent a

  5. Seismic Imaging of the Lesser Antilles Subduction Zone Using S-to-P Receiver Functions: Insights From VoiLA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chichester, B.; Rychert, C.; Harmon, N.; Rietbrock, A.; Collier, J.; Henstock, T.; Goes, S. D. B.; Kendall, J. M.; Krueger, F.

    2017-12-01

    In the Lesser Antilles subduction zone Atlantic oceanic lithosphere, expected to be highly hydrated, is being subducted beneath the Caribbean plate. Water and other volatiles from the down-going plate are released and cause the overlying mantle to melt, feeding volcanoes with magma and hence forming the volcanic island arc. However, the depths and pathways of volatiles and melt within the mantle wedge are not well known. Here, we use S-to-P receiver functions to image seismic velocity contrasts with depth within the subduction zone in order to constrain the release of volatiles and the presence of melt in the mantle wedge, as well as slab structure and arc-lithosphere structure. We use data from 55-80° epicentral distances recorded by 32 recovered broadband ocean-bottom seismometers that were deployed during the 2016-2017 Volatiles in the Lesser Antilles (VoiLA) project for 15 months on the back- and fore-arc. The S-to-P receiver functions are calculated using two methods: extended time multi-taper deconvolution followed by migration to depth to constrain 3-D discontinuity structure of the subduction zone; and simultaneous deconvolution to determine structure beneath single stations. In the south of the island arc, we image a velocity increase with depth associated with the Moho at depths of 32-40 ± 4 km on the fore- and back-arc, consistent with various previous studies. At depths of 65-80 ± 4 km beneath the fore-arc we image a strong velocity decrease with depth that is west-dipping. At 96-120 ± 5 km beneath the fore-arc, we image a velocity increase with depth that is also west-dipping. The dipping negative-positive phase could represent velocity contrasts related to the top of the down-going plate, a feature commonly imaged in subduction zone receiver function studies. The negative phase is strong, so there may also be contributions to the negative velocity discontinuity from slab dehydration and/or mantle wedge serpentinization in the fore-arc.

  6. Lithospheric Contributions to Arc Magmatism: Isotope Variations Along Strike in Volcanoes of Honshu, Japan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kersting; Arculus; Gust

    1996-06-07

    Major chemical exchange between the crust and mantle occurs in subduction zone environments, profoundly affecting the chemical evolution of Earth. The relative contributions of the subducting slab, mantle wedge, and arc lithosphere to the generation of island arc magmas, and ultimately new continental crust, are controversial. Isotopic data for lavas from a transect of volcanoes in a single arc segment of northern Honshu, Japan, have distinct variations coincident with changes in crustal lithology. These data imply that the relatively thin crustal lithosphere is an active geochemical filter for all traversing magmas and is responsible for significant modification of primary mantle melts.

  7. Helium as a tracer for fluids released from Juan de Fuca lithosphere beneath the Cascadia forearc

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCrory, Patricia A.; Constantz, James E.; Hunt, Andrew G.; Blair, James Luke

    2016-01-01

    The ratio between helium isotopes (3He/4He) provides an excellent geochemical tracer for investigating the sources of fluids sampled at the Earth's surface. 3He/4He values observed in 25 mineral springs and wells above the Cascadia forearc document a significant component of mantle-derived helium above Juan de Fuca lithosphere, as well as variability in 3He enrichment across the forearc. Sample sites arcward of the forearc mantle corner (FMC) generally yield significantly higher ratios (1.2-4.0 RA) than those seaward of the corner (0.03-0.7 RA). The highest ratios in the Cascadia forearc coincide with slab depths (40-45 km) where metamorphic dehydration of young oceanic lithosphere is expected to release significant fluid and where tectonic tremor occurs, whereas little fluid is expected to be released from the slab depths (25-30 km) beneath sites seaward of the corner.Tremor (considered a marker for high fluid pressure) and high RA values in the forearc are spatially correlated. The Cascadia tremor band is centered on its FMC, and we tentatively postulate that hydrated forearc mantle beneath Cascadia deflects a significant portion of slab-derived fluids updip along the subduction interface, to vent in the vicinity of its corner. Furthermore, high RA values within the tremor band just arcward of the FMC, suggest that the innermost mantle wedge is relatively permeable.Conceptual models require: (1) a deep fluid source as a medium to transport primordial 3He; (2) conduits through the lithosphere which serve to speed fluid ascent to the surface before significant dilution from radiogenic 4He can occur; and (3) near lithostatic fluid pressure to keep conduits open. Our spatial correlation between high RA values and tectonic tremor provides independent evidence that tremor is associated with deep fluids, and it further suggests that high pore pressures associated with tremor may serve to keep fractures open for 3He migration through ductile upper mantle and lower crust.

  8. Introduction to the structures and processes of subduction zones

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Yong-Fei; Zhao, Zi-Fu

    2017-09-01

    Subduction zones have been the focus of many studies since the advent of plate tectonics in 1960s. Workings within subduction zones beneath volcanic arcs have been of particular interest because they prime the source of arc magmas. The results from magmatic products have been used to decipher the structures and processes of subduction zones. In doing so, many progresses have been made on modern oceanic subduction zones, but less progresses on ancient oceanic subduction zones. On the other hand, continental subduction zones have been studied since findings of coesite in metamorphic rocks of supracrustal origin in 1980s. It turns out that high-pressure to ultrahigh-pressure metamorphic rocks in collisional orogens provide a direct target to investigate the tectonism of subduction zones, whereas oceanic and continental arc volcanic rocks in accretionary orogens provide an indirect target to investigate the geochemistry of subduction zones. Nevertheless, metamorphic dehydration and partial melting at high-pressure to ultrahigh-pressure conditions are tectonically applicable to subduction zone processes at forearc to subarc depths, and crustal metasomatism is the physicochemical mechanism for geochemical transfer from the slab to the mantle in subduction channels. Taken together, these provide us with an excellent opportunity to find how the metamorphic, metasomatic and magmatic products are a function of the structures and processes in both oceanic and continental subduction zones. Because of the change in the thermal structures of subduction zones, different styles of metamorphism, metasomatism and magmatism are produced at convergent plate margins. In addition, juvenile and ancient crustal rocks have often suffered reworking in episodes independent of either accretionary or collisional orogeny, leading to continental rifting metamorphism and thus rifting orogeny for mountain building in intracontinental settings. This brings complexity to distinguish the syn-subduction

  9. Electrical Conductivity Model of the Mantle Lithosphere of the Slave Craton (NW Canada) and its tectonic interpretation in the context of Geochemical Results

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lezaeta, P.; Chave, A.; Evans, R.; Jones, A. G.; Ferguson, I.

    2002-12-01

    The Slave Craton, northwestern Canada, contains the oldest known rocks on Earth, with exposed outcrop over an area of about 600x400 km2. The discovery of economic diamondiferous kimberlite pipes during the early 1990s motivated extensive research in the region. Over the last six years, four types of deep-probing magnetotelluric (MT) surveys were conducted within the framework of diverse geoscientific programs, aimed at determining the regional-scale electrical structures of the craton. Two of the surveys involved novel acquisition; one through frozen lake ice along ice roads during winter, and the second deploying ocean-bottom instrumentation from float planes during summer. The latter surveys required one year of recording between summers, thus allowing long period transfer functions that lead to mantle penetration depths of over 300 km. Two-dimensional modeling of the MT data from along the winter road showed the existence of a high conductivity zone at depths of 80-120 km beneath the central Slave craton. This anomalous region is spatially coincident with an ultradepleted harzburgitic layer in the upper mantle that was interpreted by others to be related to a subducted slab emplaced during the mid-Archean. A 3-D electrical conductivity model of the Slave lithosphere has been obtained, by trial and error, to fit the magnetic transfer and MT response functions from the lake experiments. This 3-D model traces the central Slave conductor as a NE-SW oriented mantle structure. Its NE-SW orientation coincides with that of a late fold belt system, with the first phase of craton-wide plutonism at ca 2630-2590 Ma, three-part subdivision of the craton based on SKS results, and with a G10 (garnet) geochemical mantle boundaries. All of these highlight a NE-SW structural grain to the lithospheric mantle of the craton, in sharp contrast to the N-S grain of the crust. Constraints on the depth range and lateral extension of the electrical conductive structure are obtained

  10. Sandbox Simulations of the Evolution of a Subduction Wedge following Subduction Initiation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brandon, M. T.; Ma, K. F.; DeWolf, W.

    2012-12-01

    Subduction wedges at accreting subduction zones are bounded by a landward dipping pro-shear zone (= subduction thrust) and a seaward-dipping retro-shear zone in the overriding plate. For the Cascadia subduction zone, the surface trace of the retro-shear zone corresponds to the east side of the Coast Ranges of Oregon and Washington and the Insular Mountains of Vancouver Island. This coastal high or forearc high shows clear evidence of long-term uplift and erosion along its entire length, indicating that it is an active part of the Cascadia subduction wedge. The question addressed here is what controls the location of the retro-shear zone? In the popular double-sided wedge model of Willet et al (Geology 1993), the retro-shear zone remains pinned to the S point, which is interpreted to represent where the upper-plate Moho intersects the subduction zone. For this interpretation, the relatively strong mantle is considered to operate as a flat backstop. That model, however. is somewhat artificial in that the two plates collide in a symmetric fashion with equal crustal thicknesses on both sides. Using sandbox experiments, we explore a more realistic configuration where the upper and lower plate are separated by a gentle dipping (10 degree) pro-shear zone, to simulate the initial asymmetric geometry of the subduction thrust immediately after initiation of subduction. The entire lithosphere must fail along some plane for subduction to begin and this failure plane must dip in the direction of subduction. Thus, the initial geometry of the overriding plate is better approximated as a tapered wedge than as a layer of uniform thickness, as represented in the Willett et al models. We demonstrate this model using time-lapse movies of a sand wedge above a mylar subducting plate. We use particle image velocimetry (PIV) to show the evolution of strain and structure within the overriding plate. Material accreted to the tapered end of the overriding plate drives deformation and causes

  11. Estimation of seismic velocity in the subducting crust of the Pacific slab beneath Hokkaido, northern Japan by using guided waves

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shiina, T.; Nakajima, J.; Toyokuni, G.; Kita, S.; Matsuzawa, T.

    2014-12-01

    A subducting crust contains a large amount of water as a form of hydrous minerals (e.g., Hacker et al., 2003), and the crust plays important roles for water transportation and seismogenesis in subduction zones at intermediate depths (e.g., Kirby et al., 1996; Iwamori, 2007). Therefore, the investigation of seismic structure in the crust is important to understand ongoing physical processes with subduction of oceanic lithosphere. A guided wave which propagates in the subducting crust is recorded in seismograms at Hokkaido, northern Japan (Shiina et al., 2014). Here, we estimated P- and S-wave velocity in the crust with guided waves, and obtained P-wave velocity of 6.6-7.3 km/s and S-wave velocity of 3.6-4.2 km/s at depths of 50-90 km. Moreover, Vp/Vs ratio in the crust is calculated to be 1.80-1.85 in that depth range. The obtained P-wave velocity about 6.6km/s at depths of 50-70 km is consistent with those estimated in Tohoku, northeast Japan (Shiina et al., 2013), and this the P-wave velocity is lower than those expected from models of subducting crustal compositions, such as metamorphosed MORB model (Hacker et al., 2003). In contrast, at greater depths (>80 km), the P-wave velocity marks higher velocity than the case of NE Japan and the velocity is roughly comparable to those of the MORB model. The obtained S-wave velocity distribution also shows characteristics similar to P waves. This regional variation may be caused by a small variation in thermal regime of the Pacific slab beneath the two regions as a result of the normal subduction in Tohoku and oblique subduction in Hokkaido. In addition, the effect of seismic anisotropy in the subducting crust would not be ruled out because rays used in the analysis in Hokkaido propagate mostly in the trench-parallel direction, while those in Tohoku are sufficiently criss-crossed.

  12. Hf-Nd Isotopes in West Philippine Basin Basalts: Results from International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) Site U1438 and Implications for the Early History of the Izu-Bonin-Mariana (IBM) Subduction System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yogodzinski, G. M.; Hocking, B.; Bizimis, M.; Hickey-Vargas, R.; Ishizuka, O.; Bogus, K.; Arculus, R. J.

    2015-12-01

    Drilling at IODP Site U1438, located immediately west of Kyushu-Palau Ridge (KPR), the site of IBM subduction initiation, penetrated 1460 m of volcaniclastic sedimentary rock and 150 m of underlying basement. Biostratigraphic controls indicate a probable age for the oldest sedimentary rocks at around 55 Ma (51-64 Ma - Arculus et al., Nat Geosci in-press). This is close to the 48-52 Ma time period of IBM subduction initiation, based on studies in the forearc. There, the first products of volcanism are tholeiitic basalts termed FAB (forearc basalt), which are more depleted than average MORB and show subtle indicators of subduction geochemical enrichment (Reagan et al., 2010 - Geochem Geophy Geosy). Shipboard data indicate that Site U1438 basement basalts share many characteristics with FABs, including primitive major elements (high MgO/FeO*) and strongly depleted incompatible element patterns (Ti, Zr, Ti/V and Zr/Y below those of average MORB). Initial results thus indicate that FAB geochemistry may have been produced not only in the forearc, but also in backarc locations (west of the KPR) at the time of subduction initiation. Hf-Nd isotopes for Site 1438 basement basalts show a significant range of compositions from ɛNd of 7.0 to 9.5 and ɛHf of 14.5 to 19.8 (present-day values). The data define a well-correlated and steep array in Hf-Nd isotope space. Relatively radiogenic Hf compared to Nd indicates an Indian Ocean-type MORB source, but the dominant signature, with ɛHf >16.5, is more radiogenic than most Indian MORB. The pattern through time is from more-to-less radiogenic and more variable Hf-Nd isotopes within the basement section. This pattern culminates in basaltic andesite sills, which intrude the lower parts of the sedimentary section. The sills have the least radiogenic compositions measured so far (ɛNd ~6.6, ɛHf ~13.8), and are similar to those of boninites of the IBM forearc and modern IBM arc and reararc rocks. The pattern within the basement

  13. Decrease in oceanic crustal thickness since the breakup of Pangaea

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Avendonk, Harm J. A.; Davis, Joshua K.; Harding, Jennifer L.; Lawver, Lawrence A.

    2017-01-01

    Earth's mantle has cooled by 6-11 °C every 100 million years since the Archaean, 2.5 billion years ago. In more recent times, the surface heat loss that led to this temperature drop may have been enhanced by plate-tectonic processes, such as continental breakup, the continuous creation of oceanic lithosphere at mid-ocean ridges and subduction at deep-sea trenches. Here we use a compilation of marine seismic refraction data from ocean basins globally to analyse changes in the thickness of oceanic crust over time. We find that oceanic crust formed in the mid-Jurassic, about 170 million years ago, is 1.7 km thicker on average than crust produced along the present-day mid-ocean ridge system. If a higher mantle temperature is the cause of thicker Jurassic ocean crust, the upper mantle may have cooled by 15-20 °C per 100 million years over this time period. The difference between this and the long-term mantle cooling rate indeed suggests that modern plate tectonics coincide with greater mantle heat loss. We also find that the increase of ocean crustal thickness with plate age is stronger in the Indian and Atlantic oceans compared with the Pacific Ocean. This observation supports the idea that upper mantle temperature in the Jurassic was higher in the wake of the fragmented supercontinent Pangaea due to the effect of continental insulation.

  14. Subduction zone forearc serpentinites as incubators for deep microbial life

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Plümper, Oliver|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/37155960X; King, Helen E.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/411261088; Geisler, Thorsten; Liu, Yang|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/411298119; Pabst, Sonja; Savov, Ivan P.; Rost, Detlef; Zack, Thomas

    2017-01-01

    Serpentinization-fueled systems in the cool, hydrated forearc mantle of subduction zones may provide an environment that supports deep chemolithoautotrophic life. Here, we examine serpentinite clasts expelled from mud volcanoes above the Izu–Bonin–Mariana subduction zone forearc (Pacific Ocean) that

  15. 3D absolute hypocentral determination - 13 years of seismicity in Ecuadorian subduction zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Font, Yvonne; Segovia, Monica; Theunissen, Thomas

    2010-05-01

    In Ecuador, the Nazca plate is subducting beneath the North Andean Block. This subduction triggered, during the last century, 4 major earthquakes of magnitude greater than 7.7. Between 1994 and 2007, the Geophysical Institute (Escuela National Politecnica, Quito) recorded about 40 000 events in whole Ecuador ranging from Mb 1.5 to 6.9. Unfortunately, the local network shows great density discrepancy between the Coastal and Andean regions where numerous stations were installed to survey volcanic activity. Consequently, seismicity in and around the interplate seismogenic zone - producer of the most destructive earthquakes and tsunamis - is not well constrained. This study aims to improve the location of 13 years seismicity occurred during an interseismic period in order to better localize the seismic deformation and gaps. The first step consists in the construction of a 3D "georealistic" velocity model. Because local tomography cannot provide satisfactory model, we combined all local crustal/lithospheric information on the geometry and velocity properties of different geological units. Those information cover the oceanic Nazca plate and sedimentary coverture the subducting plate dip angle; the North Andean Block margin composed of accreted oceanic plateaus (the Moho depth is approximated using gravity modeling); the metamorphic volcanic chain (oceanic nature for the occidental cordillera and inter-andean valley, continental one for the oriental cordillera); The continental Guyana shield and sedimentary basins. The resulting 3D velocity model extends from 2°N to 6.5°S and 277°E to 283°E and reaches a depth of 300 km. It is discretized in constant velocity blocks of 12 x 12 x 3 km in x, y and z, respectively. The second step consists in selecting an adequate sub-set of seismic stations in order to correct the effect of station density disequilibrium between coastal and volcanic regions. Consequently, we only keep the most representative volcanic stations in terms

  16. Fate of Subducting Organic Carbon: Evidence from HP/UHP Metasedimentary Suites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kraft, K.; Bebout, G. E.

    2017-12-01

    Community interest in deep-Earth C cycling has focused attention on extents of C release from subducting oceanic lithosphere and sediment and the fate of this released C. Many have suggested that, based on isotopic and other arguments, 20% of the C subducted into the deeper mantle is in reduced form (organic); however, individual margins show large variation in carbonate to organic C ratios. Despite the size of the potentially deeply subducted organic C reservoir, its fate in subducting sections remains largely unexplored, with most attention paid to release of carbonate C. To characterize the forearc behavior of organic C, metamorphosed to P-T as high as that beneath volcanic fronts, we evaluated records of reduced C (RC) contents and isotope compositions in HP/UHP metasediments: 1) Schistes Lustres/Cignana (SLC) suite (Alps; Cook-Kollars et al., 2014, Chem Geol) with abundant carbonate and resembling sediment entering the East Sunda trench; and (2) Franciscan Complex (FC), W. Baja Terrain (WBT), Catalina Schist (CS) metasediments (Sadofsky and Bebout, 2003, G3), largely sandstone-shale sequences containing very little carbonate. In general, more Al-rich samples (shaley) in the terrigenous metasedimentary suites have higher concentrations of RC, which in low-grade units preserves δ13C of its organic protoliths. Carbonate-poor rocks in the SLC suite, and at ODP Site 765, show correlated major element (Al, Mg, Mn, Ti, P) and RC contents (up to 1.2 wt.%) reflecting sandstone-shale mixture. In the FC, WBT, and CS, the more Al-rich samples contain up to 2 wt. % RC. In high-grade Catalina Schist, RC has elevated δ13C due to C loss in CH4 and high-grade Alps rocks show reduced RC wt. % normalized to Al content. We consider processes that could alter contents and isotopic compositions of RC in sediment, e.g., devolatilization, closed-system exchange with carbonate, redox reactions, isotopic exchange with C in externally-derived fluids. It appears that, on modern Earth

  17. Three-dimensional thermal structure and seismogenesis in the Tohoku and Hokkaido subduction system

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Keken, P. E.; Kita, S.; Nakajima, J.; Bengtson, A. K.; Hacker, B. R.; Abers, G. A.

    2010-12-01

    The Northern Japan arc is characterized by fast subduction of old oceanic lithosphere. The high density instrumentation and high seismicity make this an ideal natural laboratory to study the interplay between subduction zone dynamics, dehydration, migration of fluids, and seismogenesis. In this study we use high resolution finite element models to predict the thermal structure of the subduction slab below Tohoku (Northern Honshu) and Hokkaido. These models allow us to predict the pressure, temperature and mineralogy of the subducted crust and mantle. We use these models to predict the (p,T) conditions of earthquakes that are relocated with a precision of around 1 km by double difference techniques. Below Northern Hokkaido and Tohoku we find that the earthquake activity is strong in crust and the uppermost mantle for temperatures seismic moment. The strongest 3D variations in this arc occur below southern Hokkaido. This 200 km wide region is characterized by a change in trench geometry, anomalously low heatflow and an anomalous velocity structure in the mantle wedge. Tomographic imaging suggest that continental crust is subducted to significant depth, thereby insulating the subducting slab from the hot mantle wedge at least at intermediate depths. The thermal insulation is also suggested by the deepening of the earthquakes in the slab (Kita et al., EPSL, 2010). This region may be characterized by active crustal erosion which would lead to a further blanketing of the crust by a sedimentary layer. Further modifications in thermal structure are possible due to the 3D wedge flow that is generated by the along-arc variations in trench geometry. We quantitatively verify the relative importance of these processes using 2D and 3D dynamical models. Without the seismically imaged crustal structure the earthquake temperatures are significantly elevated compared to the Tohoku and (northern) Hokkaido sections. If we take the modified crustal structure into account we find a (p

  18. Quasi-3-D Seismic Reflection Imaging and Wide-Angle Velocity Structure of Nearly Amagmatic Oceanic Lithosphere at the Ultraslow-Spreading Southwest Indian Ridge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Momoh, Ekeabino; Cannat, Mathilde; Watremez, Louise; Leroy, Sylvie; Singh, Satish C.

    2017-12-01

    We present results from 3-D processing of 2-D seismic data shot along 100 m spaced profiles in a 1.8 km wide by 24 km long box during the SISMOSMOOTH 2014 cruise. The study is aimed at understanding the oceanic crust formed at an end-member mid-ocean ridge environment of nearly zero melt supply. Three distinct packages of reflectors are imaged: (1) south facing reflectors, which we propose correspond to the damage zone induced by the active axial detachment fault: reflectors in the damage zone have dips up to 60° and are visible down to 5 km below the seafloor; (2) series of north dipping reflectors in the hanging wall of the detachment fault: these reflectors may correspond to damage zone inherited from a previous, north dipping detachment fault, or small offset recent faults, conjugate from the active detachment fault, that served as conduits for isolated magmatic dykes; and (3) discontinuous but coherent flat-lying reflectors at shallow depths (serpentinization and fracturation of the exhumed mantle-derived peridotites in the footwall of active and past detachment faults.

  19. Heterogeneous coupling along Makran subduction zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zarifi, Z.; Raeesi, M.

    2010-12-01

    The Makran subduction zone, located in the southeast of Iran and southern Pakistan, extends for almost 900 km along the Eurasian-Arabian plate boundary. The seismic activities in the eastern and western Makran exhibit very different patterns. The eastern Makran characterized by infrequent large earthquakes and low level of seismicity. The only large instrumentally recorded earthquake in the eastern Makran, the 27 Nov. 1945 (Mw=8.1) earthquake, was followed by tsunami waves with the maximum run-up height of 13 m and disastrous effects in Pakistan, India, Iran and Oman. The western Makran, however, is apparently quiescent without strong evidence on occurrence of large earthquakes in historical times, which makes it difficult to ascertain whether the slab subducts aseismically or experiences large earthquakes separated by long periods exceeding the historical records. We used seismicity and Trench Parallel Free air and Bouguer Anomalies (TPGA and TPBA) to study the variation in coupling in the slab interface. Using a 3D mechanical Finite Element (FE) model, we show how heterogeneous coupling can influence the rate of deformation in the overriding lithosphere and the state of stress in the outer rise, overriding, and subducting plates within the shortest expected cycle of earthquake. We test the results of FE model against the observed focal mechanism of earthquakes and available GPS measurements in Makran subduction zone.

  20. Late Miocene Pacific plate kinematic change explained with coupled global models of mantle and lithosphere dynamics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stotz, Ingo Leonardo; Iaffaldano, Giampiero; Davies, DR

    2017-01-01

    and the consequent subduction polarity reversal. The uncertainties associated with the timing of this event, however, make it difficult to quantitatively demonstrate a dynamical association. Here, we first reconstruct the Pacific plate's absolute motion since the mid-Miocene (15 Ma), at high-temporal resolution....../lithosphere system to test hypotheses on the dynamics driving this change. These indicate that the arrival of the OJP at the Melanesian arc, between 10 and 5 Ma, followed by a subduction polarity reversal that marked the initiation of subduction of the Australian plate underneath the Pacific realm, were the key...... drivers of this kinematic change....

  1. A Review of Recent Developments in the Study of Regional Lithospheric Electrical Structure of the Asian Continent

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Letian

    2017-09-01

    The Asian continent was formed through the amalgamation of several major continental blocks that were formerly separated by the Paleo-Asian and Tethyan Oceans. During this process, the Asian continent underwent a long period of continental crustal growth and tectonic deformation, making it the largest and youngest continent on Earth. This paper presents a review of the application of geophysical electromagnetic methods, mainly the magnetotelluric (MT) method, in recent investigations of the diverse tectonic features across the Asian continent. The case studies cover the major continental blocks of Asia, the Central Asian orogenic system, the Tethyan orogenic system, as well as the western Pacific subduction system. In summary, most of the major continental blocks of Asia exhibit a three-layer structure with a resistive upper crust and upper mantle and a relatively conductive mid-lower crust. Large-scale conductors in the upper mantle were interpreted as an indication of lithospheric modification at the craton margins. The electrical structure of the Central Asian orogenic system is generally more resistive than the bordering continental blocks, whereas the Tethyan orogenic system displays more conductive, with pervasive conductors in the lower crust and upper mantle. The western Pacific subduction system shows increasing complexity in its electrical structure from its northern extent to its southern extent. In general, the following areas of the Asian continent have increasingly conductive lithospheric electrical structures, which correspond to a transition from the most stable areas to the most active tectonic areas of Asia: the major continental blocks, the accretionary Central Asian orogenic system, the collisional Tethyan orogenic system, and the western Pacific subduction system. As a key part of this review, a three-dimensional (3-D) model of the lithospheric electrical structure of a large portion of the Tibetan Plateau is presented and discussed in detail

  2. Tomographically-imaged subducted slabs and magmatic history of Caribbean and Pacific subduction beneath Colombia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernal-Olaya, R.; Mann, P.; Vargas, C. A.; Koulakov, I.

    2013-12-01

    We define the length and geometry of eastward and southeastward-subducting slabs beneath northwestern South America in Colombia using ~100,000 earthquake events recorded by the Colombian National Seismic Network from 1993 to 2012. Methods include: hypocenter relocation, compilation of focal mechanisms, and P and S wave tomographic calculations performed using LOTOS and Seisan. The margins of Colombia include four distinct subduction zones based on slab dip: 1) in northern Colombia, 12-16-km-thick oceanic crust subducts at a modern GPS rate of 20 mm/yr in a direction of 110 degrees at a shallow angle of 8 degrees; as a result of its low dip, Pliocene-Pleistocene volcanic rocks are present 400 km from the frontal thrust; magmatic arc migration to the east records 800 km of subduction since 58 Ma ago (Paleocene) with shallow subduction of the Caribbean oceanic plateau starting ~24-33 Ma (Miocene); at depths of 90-150 km, the slab exhibits a negative velocity anomaly we associate with pervasive fracturing; 2) in the central Colombia-Panama area, we define an area of 30-km-thick crust of the Panama arc colliding/subducting at a modern 30/mm in a direction of 95 degrees; the length of this slab shows subduction/collision initiated after 20 Ma (Middle Miocene); we call this feature the Panama indenter since it has produced a V-shaped indentation of the Colombian margin and responsible for widespread crustal deformation and topographic uplift in Colombia; an incipient subduction area is forming near the Panama border with intermediate earthquakes at an eastward dip of 70 degrees to depths of ~150 km; this zone is not visible on tomographic images; 3) a 250-km-wide zone of Miocene oceanic crust of the Nazca plate flanking the Panama indenter subducts at a rate of 25 mm/yr in a direction of 55 degrees and at a normal dip of 40 degrees; the length of this slab suggests subduction began at ~5 Ma; 4) the Caldas tear defines a major dip change to the south where a 35 degrees

  3. Tasman frontier subduction initiation and paleogene climate

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sutherland, Rupert; Dickens, Gerald R.; Blum, Peter; Agnini, Claudia; Alegret, Laia; Bhattacharya, Joyeeta; Bordenave, Aurelien; Chang, Liao; Collot, Julien; Cramwinckel, Margot J.; Dallanave, Edoardo; Drake, Michelle K.; Etienne, Samuel J.G.; Giorgioni, Martino; Gurnis, Michael; Harper, Dustin T.; Huang, Huai Hsuan May; Keller, Allison L.; Lam, Adriane R.; Li, He; Matsui, Hiroki; Newsam, Cherry; Park, Yu Hyeon; Pascher, Kristina M.; Pekar, Stephen F.; Penman, Donald E.; Saito, Saneatsu; Stratford, Wanda R.; Westerhold, Thomas; Zhou, Xiaoli

    International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) Expedition 371 drilled six sites in the Tasman Sea of the southwest Pacific between 27 July and 26 September 2017. The primary goal was to understand Tonga-Kermadec subduction initiation through recovery of Paleogene sediment records. Secondary goals

  4. A lithospheric velocity model for the flat slab region of Argentina from joint inversion of Rayleigh-wave dispersion and teleseismic receiver functions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ammirati, J. B.; Alvarado, P. M.; Beck, S. L.

    2014-12-01

    Receiver Function (RF) analyses using teleseismic P waveforms is a technique to isolate P to S conversions from seismic discontinuities in the lithosphere. Using earthquakes with a good azimuthal distribution, RFs recorded at a three-component seismic station can be inverted to obtain detailed lithospheric velocity structures. The technique, however presents a velocity-depth trade-off, which results in a non-unique model because RFs do not depend on the absolute seismic velocities but rather on relative velocity contrasts. Unlike RF, surface wave dispersion is sensitive to the average shear-wave velocity which makes it well suited for studying long period variations of the lithospheric seismic velocities. We performed a joint inversion of RF and Rayleigh-wave phase velocity dispersion to investigate the structure beneath the SIEMBRA network, a 43-broadband-seismic-station array deployed in the Pampean flat slab region of Argentina. Our results indicate: 1) The presence of several mid-crustal discontinuities probably related with terrane accretion; 2) A high seismic velocity in the lower crust suggesting partial eclogitization; 3) A thicker crust (> 50 km) beneath the western Sierras Pampeanas with an abrupt change in the relative timing of the Moho signal indicating a thinner crust to the east; 4) The presence of the subducting oceanic crust lying at ~100 km depth. We then built a 1D regional velocity model for the flat slab region of Argentina and used it for regional moment tensor inversions for local earthquakes. This technique is notably dependent on small-scale variations of Earth structure when modeling higher frequency seismic waveforms. Eighteen regional focal mechanisms have been determined. Our solutions are in good agreement with GCMT source estimations although our solutions for deep earthquakes systematically resulted in shallower focal depths suggesting that the slab seismicity could be concentrated at the top of the subducting Nazca plate. Solutions

  5. Earth's lithospheric magnetic field determined to spherical harmonic degree 90 from CHAMP satellite measurements

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Maus, S.; Rother, M.; Hemant, K.

    2006-01-01

    of the lithospheric field down to an altitude of about 50 km at lower latitudes, with reduced accuracy in the polar regions. Crustal features come out significantly sharper than in previous models. In particular, bands of magnetic anomalies along subduction zones become visible by satellite for the first time....

  6. Electrical conductivity imaging in the western Pacific subduction zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Utada, Hisashi; Baba, Kiyoshi; Shimizu, Hisayoshi

    2010-05-01

    Oceanic plate subduction is an important process for the dynamics and evolution of the Earth's interior, as it is regarded as a typical downward flow of the mantle convection that transports materials from the near surface to the deep mantle. Recent seismological study showed evidence suggesting the transportation of a certain amount of water by subduction of old oceanic plate such as the Pacific plate down to 150-200 km depth into the back arc mantle. However it is not well clarified how deep into the mantle the water can be transported. The electromagnetic induction method to image electrical conductivity distribution is a possible tool to answer this question as it is known to be sensitive to the presence of water. Here we show recent result of observational study from the western Pacific subduction zone to examine the electrical conductivity distribution in the upper mantle and in the mantle transition zone (MTZ), which will provide implications how water distributes in the mantle. We take two kinds of approach for imaging the mantle conductivity, (a) semi-global and (b) regional induction approaches. Result may be summarized as follows: (a) Long (5-30 years) time series records from 8 submarine cables and 13 geomagnetic observatories in the north Pacific region were analyzed and long period magnetotelluric (MT) and geomagnetic deep sounding (GDS) responses were estimated in the period range from 1.7 to 35 days. These frequency dependent response functions were inverted to 3-dimensional conductivity distribution in the depth range between 350 and 850 km. Three major features are suggested in the MTZ depth such as, (1) a high conductivity anomaly beneath the Philippine Sea, (2) a high conductivity anomaly beneath the Hawaiian Islands, and (3) a low conductivity anomaly beneath and in the vicinity of northern Japan. (b) A three-year long deployment of ocean bottom electro-magnetometers (OBEM's) was conducted in the Philippine Sea and west Pacific Ocean from 2005

  7. New Insights on the Structure of the Cascadia Subduction Zone from Amphibious Seismic Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janiszewski, Helen Anne

    A new onshore-offshore seismic dataset from the Cascadia subduction zone was used to characterize mantle lithosphere structure from the ridge to the volcanic arc, and plate interface structure offshore within the seismogenic zone. The Cascadia Initiative (CI) covered the Juan de Fuca plate offshore the northwest coast of the United States with an ocean bottom seismometer (OBS) array for four years; this was complemented by a simultaneous onshore seismic array. Teleseismic data recorded by this array allows the unprecedented imaging of an entire tectonic plate from its creation at the ridge through subduction initiation and back beyond the volcanic arc along the entire strike of the Cascadia subduction zone. Higher frequency active source seismic data also provides constraints on the crustal structure along the plate interface offshore. Two seismic datasets were used to image the plate interface structure along a line extending 100 km offshore central Washington. These are wide-angle reflections from ship-to-shore seismic data from the Ridge-To-Trench seismic cruise and receiver functions calculated from a densely spaced CI OBS focus array in a similar region. Active source seismic observations are consistent with reflections from the plate interface offshore indicating the presence of a P-wave velocity discontinuity. Until recently, there has been limited success in using the receiver function technique on OBS data. I avoid these traditional challenges by using OBS constructed with shielding deployed in shallow water on the continental shelf. These data have quieter horizontals and avoid water- and sediment-multiple contamination at the examined frequencies. The receiver functions are consistently modeled with a velocity structure that has a low velocity zone (LVZ) with elevated P to S-wave velocity ratios at the plate interface. A similar LVZ structure has been observed onshore and interpreted as a combination of elevated pore-fluid pressures or metasediments

  8. Diachronous demise of the Neotethys Ocean as driver for non-cylindrical orogenesis in Anatolia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Hinsbergen, D. J. J.; Gurer, D.

    2017-12-01

    Continent-continent collision drives crustal deformation, topographic rise, and geodynamic change. Africa-Eurasia convergence accommodated in the Eastern Mediterranean involved subduction of the Neotethyan oceanic lithosphere in Anatolia. Subduction was followed by collision of Greater Adria continental crust with Eurasia forming the Izmir-Ankara-Erzincan suture zone. Discerning the effects of this collision from pre-collisional ophiolite obduction-related orogeny of Greater Adria is notoriously difficult, and estimates from Central Anatolia based on a forearc-to-foreland basin transition along the Eurasian margin suggest a 60 Ma initial collision. Here we assess whether this age is also representative for collision in eastern Anatolia across the Cenozoic Sivas basin that straddles the Greater Adria-Europe suture by retro-deforming regional block rotations in the Pontides, Kırşehir and Taurides, building a first-order regional `block circuit' around the Sivas basin. We show that up to 700 km of convergence must have been accommodated after central Anatolian Kırşehir-Pontide collision at 65-60 Ma across the Sivas Basin - an order of magnitude more than estimated crustal shortening. We consequently infer that oceanic subduction continued much longer in eastern Anatolia, perhaps into the Oligocene or beyond, demonstrating the a recently postulated greater paleogeographic width of the Neotethys in eastern Anatolia. Prolonged oceanic subduction likely resulted from a paleogeography with a sharp kink in the former Kırşehir-Tauride passive margin. The strong non-cylindricity of the Anatolian collisional orogen is explained continued slab pull during ongoing oceanic subduction in eastern Anatolia following central Anatolian collision.

  9. Lithospheric thickness jumps at the S-Atlantic continental margins from satellite gravity data and modelled isostatic anomalies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shahraki, Meysam; Schmeling, Harro; Haas, Peter

    2018-01-01

    Isostatic equilibrium is a good approximation for passive continental margins. In these regions, geoid anomalies are proportional to the local dipole moment of density-depth distributions, which can be used to constrain the amount of oceanic to continental lithospheric thickening (lithospheric jumps). We consider a five- or three-layer 1D model for the oceanic and continental lithosphere, respectively, composed of water, a sediment layer (both for the oceanic case), the crust, the mantle lithosphere and the asthenosphere. The mantle lithosphere is defined by a mantle density, which is a function of temperature and composition, due to melt depletion. In addition, a depth-dependent sediment density associated with compaction and ocean floor variation is adopted. We analyzed satellite derived geoid data and, after filtering, extracted typical averaged profiles across the Western and Eastern passive margins of the South Atlantic. They show geoid jumps of 8.1 m and 7.0 m for the Argentinian and African sides, respectively. Together with topography data and an averaged crustal density at the conjugate margins these jumps are interpreted as isostatic geoid anomalies and yield best-fitting crustal and lithospheric thicknesses. In a grid search approach five parameters are systematically varied, namely the thicknesses of the sediment layer, the oceanic and continental crusts and the oceanic and the continental mantle lithosphere. The set of successful models reveals a clear asymmetry between the South Africa and Argentine lithospheres by 15 km. Preferred models predict a sediment layer at the Argentine margin of 3-6 km and at the South Africa margin of 1-2.5 km. Moreover, we derived a linear relationship between, oceanic lithosphere, sediment thickness and lithospheric jumps at the South Atlantic margins. It suggests that the continental lithospheres on the western and eastern South Atlantic are thicker by 45-70 and 60-80 km than the oceanic lithospheres, respectively.

  10. Hafnium at subduction zones: isotopic budget of input and output fluxes; L'hafnium dans les zones de subduction: bilan isotopique des flux entrant et sortant

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Marini, J.Ch

    2004-05-15

    Subduction zones are the primary regions of mass exchanges between continental crust and mantle of Earth through sediment subduction toward the earth's mantle and by supply of mantellic magmas to volcanic arcs. We analyze these mass exchanges using Hafnium and Neodymium isotopes. At the Izu-Mariana subduction zone, subducting sediments have Hf and Nd isotopes equivalent to Pacific seawater. Altered oceanic crust has Hf and Nd isotopic compositions equivalent to the isotopic budget of unaltered Pacific oceanic crust. At Luzon and Java subduction zones, arc lavas present Hf isotopic ratios highly radiogenic in comparison to their Nd isotopic ratios. Such compositions of the Luzon and Java arc lavas are controlled by a contamination of their sources by the subducted oceanic sediments. (author)

  11. Mercury's Lithospheric Magnetization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, C.; Phillips, R. J.; Philpott, L. C.; Al Asad, M.; Plattner, A.; Mast, S.; Kinczyk, M. J.; Prockter, L. M.

    2017-12-01

    Magnetic field data obtained by the MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, and Ranging (MESSENGER) spacecraft have been used to demonstrate the presence of lithospheric magnetization on Mercury. Larger amplitude fields resulting from the core dynamo and the strongly time-varying magnetospheric current systems are first estimated and subtracted from the magnetic field data to isolate lithospheric signals with wavelengths less than 500 km. These signals (hereafter referred to as data) are only observed at spacecraft altitudes less than 120 km, and are typically a few to 10 nT in amplitude. We present and compare equivalent source dipole magnetization models for latitudes 35°N to 75°N obtained from two distinct approaches to constrain the distribution and origin of lithospheric magnetization. First, models that fit either the data or the surface field predicted from a regional spherical harmonic representation of the data (see Plattner & Johnson abstract) and that minimize the root mean square (RMS) value of the magnetization are derived. Second, models in which the spatial distribution of magnetization required to fit the data is minimized are derived using the approach of Parker (1991). As seen previously, the largest amplitudes of lithospheric magnetization are concentrated around the Caloris basin. With this exception, across the northern hemisphere there are no overall correlations of magnetization with surface geology, although higher magnetizations are found in regions with darker surfaces. Similarly, there is no systematic correlation of magnetization signatures with crater materials, although there are specific instances of craters with interiors or ejecta that have magnetizations distinct from the surrounding region. For the latter case, we observe no correlation of the occurrence of these signatures with crater degradation state (a proxy for age). At the lowest spacecraft altitudes (source depths less than O(10 km) are unlikely in most regions

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishikawa, T.; Ide, S.

    2013-12-01

    Since the pioneering study of Uyeda and Kanamori (1979), it has been thought that world's subduction zones can be classified into two types: Chile and Mariana types. Ruff and Kanamori (1980) suggested that the maximum earthquake size within each subduction zone correlates with convergence rate and age of subducting lithosphere. Subduction zones with younger lithosphere and larger convergence rates are associated with great earthquakes (Chile), while subduction zones with older lithosphere and smaller convergence rates have low seismicity (Mariana). However, these correlations are obscured after the 2004 Sumatra earthquake and the 2009 Tohoku earthquake. Furthermore, McCaffrey (2008) pointed out that the history of observation is much shorter than the recurrence times of very large earthquakes, suggesting a possibility that any subduction zone may produce earthquakes larger than magnitude 9. In the present study, we compare world's subduction zones in terms of b-values in the Gutenberg-Richer relation. We divided world's subduction zones into 146 regions, each of which is bordered by a trench section of about 500 km and extends for 200 km from the trench section in the direction of relative plate motion. In each region, earthquakes equal to or larger than M4.5 occurring during 1988-2009 were extracted from ISC catalog. We find a positive correlation between b-values and ages of subducting lithosphere, which is one of the two important variables discussed in Ruff and Kanamori (1980). Subduction zones with younger lithosphere are associated with high b-values and vice versa, while we cannot find a correlation between b-values and convergence rates. We used the ages determined by Müller et al. (2008) and convergence rate calculated using PB2002 (Bird, 2003) for convergence rate. We also found a negative correlation between b-values and the estimates of seismic coupling, which is defined as the ratio of the observed seismic moment release rate to the rate calculated

  13. Are diamond-bearing Cretaceous kimberlites related to shallow-angle subduction beneath western North America?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Currie, C. A.; Beaumont, C.

    2009-05-01

    The origin of deep-seated magmatism (in particular, kimberlites and lamproites) within continental plate interiors remains enigmatic in the context of plate tectonic theory. One hypothesis proposes a relationship between kimberlite occurrence and lithospheric subduction, such that a subducting plate releases fluids below a continental craton, triggering melting of the deep lithosphere and magmatism (Sharp, 1974; McCandless, 1999). This study provides a quantitative evaluation of this hypothesis, focusing on the Late Cretaceous- Eocene (105-50 Ma) kimberlites and lamproites of western North America. These magmas were emplaced along a corridor of Archean and Proterozoic lithosphere, 1000-1500 km inboard of the plate margin separating the subducting Farallon Plate and continental North America Plate. Kimberlite-lamproite magmatism coincides with tectonic events, including the Laramide orogeny, shut-down of the Sierra Nevada arc, and eastward migration of volcanism, that are commonly attributed to a change in Farallon Plate geometry to a shallow-angle trajectory (subduction that places the Farallon Plate beneath the western edge of the cratonic interior of North America. This geometry is consistent with the observed continental dynamic subsidence that lead to the development of the Western Interior Seaway. The models also show that the subducting plate has a cool thermal structure, and subducted hydrous minerals (serpentine, phengite and phlogopite) remain stable to more than 1200 km from the trench, where they may break down and release fluids that infiltrate the overlying craton lithosphere. This is supported by geochemical studies that indicate metasomatism of the Colorado Plateau and Wyoming craton mantle lithosphere by an aqueous fluid and/or silicate melt with a subduction signature. Through Cretaceous shallow-angle subduction, the Farallon Plate was in a position to mechanically and chemically interact with North American craton lithosphere at the time of

  14. Crustal volumes of the continents and of oceanic and continental submarine plateaus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schubert, G.; Sandwell, D.

    1989-01-01

    Using global topographic data and the assumption of Airy isostasy, it is estimated that the crustal volume of the continents is 7182 X 10 to the 6th cu km. The crustal volumes of the oceanic and continental submarine plateaus are calculated at 369 X 10 to the 6th cu km and 242 X 10 to the 6th cu km, respectively. The total continental crustal volume is found to be 7581 X 10 to the 6th cu km, 3.2 percent of which is comprised of continental submarine plateaus on the seafloor. An upper bound on the contintental crust addition rate by the accretion of oceanic plateaus is set at 3.7 cu km/yr. Subduction of continental submarine plateaus with the oceanic lithosphere on a 100 Myr time scale yields an upper bound to the continental crustal subtraction rate of 2.4 cu km/yr.

  15. A New Model of Lithosphere Deformation Beneath the Okinawa Trough Based on Gravity Data

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHAO Lihong; JIANG Xiaodian; ZHANG Weigang

    2002-01-01

    The Ryukyu trench-arc system can be divided into two types according to its subduction model. The normal sub-duction in the northern part of the Philippine Sea plate creates a hinge sedimentary wedge with large deformation at the col-lision front, while the oblique subduction in the southern part gives rise to a smaller accretion with small deformation thanthat in the northern part. The mechanisms that cause the distinction between these two types have been analysed and calcu-lated by using gravity data based on the lithosphere rheology and the stress state of the lithosphere in the subduction bound-ary. The two types of subduction model are associated with the internal extension in the southern Okinawa Trough and thesmall extension in the northern part. The difference of the stress state between the two types of subduction model is alsomanifested in other tectonic features, such as topography, volcanic activity and crust movement. Modeling bathymetric andgravity data from this area suggests that the oblique subduction of low angle, together with smooth geometry of the overlyingplate crust, results in small stress released on the south of the trench by the subduction plate. The intraplate faults in thesouthern Okinawa Trough behind the trench stand in surplus intensive stress. On the other hand, the normal subduction ofhigh angle, together with strong undulation geometry of the overlying crust, results in more intensive stress released in thenorthern Ryukyu Trench than that in the south. The intraplate faults in the northern Okinawa Trough behind the northernRyukyu Trench stand in small stress.

  16. Observations at convergent margins concerning sediment subduction, subduction erosion, and the growth of continental crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Huene, Roland E.; Scholl, D. W.

    1991-01-01

    At ocean margins where two plates converge, the oceanic plate sinks or is subducted beneath an upper one topped by a layer of terrestrial crust. This crust is constructed of continental or island arc material. The subduction process either builds juvenile masses of terrestrial crust through arc volcanism or new areas of crust through the piling up of accretionary masses (prisms) of sedimentary deposits and fragments of thicker crustal bodies scraped off the subducting lower plate. At convergent margins, terrestrial material can also bypass the accretionary prism as a result of sediment subduction, and terrestrial matter can be removed from the upper plate by processes of subduction erosion. Sediment subduction occurs where sediment remains attached to the subducting oceanic plate and underthrusts the seaward position of the upper plate's resistive buttress (backstop) of consolidated sediment and rock. Sediment subduction occurs at two types of convergent margins: type 1 margins where accretionary prisms form and type 2 margins where little net accretion takes place. At type 2 margins (???19,000 km in global length), effectively all incoming sediment is subducted beneath the massif of basement or framework rocks forming the landward trench slope. At accreting or type 1 margins, sediment subduction begins at the seaward position of an active buttress of consolidated accretionary material that accumulated in front of a starting or core buttress of framework rocks. Where small-to-mediumsized prisms have formed (???16,300 km), approximately 20% of the incoming sediment is skimmed off a detachment surface or decollement and frontally accreted to the active buttress. The remaining 80% subducts beneath the buttress and may either underplate older parts of the frontal body or bypass the prism entirely and underthrust the leading edge of the margin's rock framework. At margins bordered by large prisms (???8,200 km), roughly 70% of the incoming trench floor section is

  17. Reduction of nitrogen compounds in oceanic basement and its implications for HCN formation and abiotic organic synthesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holm, Nils G; Neubeck, Anna

    2009-10-22

    Hydrogen cyanide is an excellent organic reagent and is central to most of the reaction pathways leading to abiotic formation of simple organic compounds containing nitrogen, such as amino acids, purines and pyrimidines. Reduced carbon and nitrogen precursor compounds for the synthesis of HCN may be formed under off-axis hydrothermal conditions in oceanic lithosphere in the presence of native Fe and Ni and are adsorbed on authigenic layer silicates and zeolites. The native metals as well as the molecular hydrogen reducing CO2 to CO/CH4 and NO3-/NO2- to NH3/NH4+ are a result of serpentinization of mafic rocks. Oceanic plates are conveyor belts of reduced carbon and nitrogen compounds from the off-axis hydrothermal environments to the subduction zones, where compaction, dehydration, desiccation and diagenetic reactions affect the organic precursors. CO/CH4 and NH3/NH4+ in fluids distilled out of layer silicates and zeolites in the subducting plate at an early stage of subduction will react upon heating and form HCN, which is then available for further organic reactions to, for instance, carbohydrates, nucleosides or even nucleotides, under alkaline conditions in hydrated mantle rocks of the overriding plate. Convergent margins in the initial phase of subduction must, therefore, be considered the most potent sites for prebiotic reactions on Earth. This means that origin of life processes are, perhaps, only possible on planets where some kind of plate tectonics occur.

  18. Reduction of nitrogen compounds in oceanic basement and its implications for HCN formation and abiotic organic synthesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Neubeck Anna

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Hydrogen cyanide is an excellent organic reagent and is central to most of the reaction pathways leading to abiotic formation of simple organic compounds containing nitrogen, such as amino acids, purines and pyrimidines. Reduced carbon and nitrogen precursor compounds for the synthesis of HCN may be formed under off-axis hydrothermal conditions in oceanic lithosphere in the presence of native Fe and Ni and are adsorbed on authigenic layer silicates and zeolites. The native metals as well as the molecular hydrogen reducing CO2 to CO/CH4 and NO3-/NO2- to NH3/NH4+ are a result of serpentinization of mafic rocks. Oceanic plates are conveyor belts of reduced carbon and nitrogen compounds from the off-axis hydrothermal environments to the subduction zones, where compaction, dehydration, desiccation and diagenetic reactions affect the organic precursors. CO/CH4 and NH3/NH4+ in fluids distilled out of layer silicates and zeolites in the subducting plate at an early stage of subduction will react upon heating and form HCN, which is then available for further organic reactions to, for instance, carbohydrates, nucleosides or even nucleotides, under alkaline conditions in hydrated mantle rocks of the overriding plate. Convergent margins in the initial phase of subduction must, therefore, be considered the most potent sites for prebiotic reactions on Earth. This means that origin of life processes are, perhaps, only possible on planets where some kind of plate tectonics occur.

  19. The interplay between subduction and lateral extrusion: A case study for the European Eastern Alps based on analogue models

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Gelder, I. E.; Willingshofer, E.; Sokoutis, D.; Cloetingh, S. A. P. L.

    2017-08-01

    A series of analogue experiments simulating intra-continental subduction contemporaneous with lateral extrusion of the upper plate are performed to study the interference between these two processes at crustal levels and in the lithospheric mantle. The models demonstrate that intra-continental subduction and coeval lateral extrusion of the upper plate are compatible processes leading to similar deformation structures within the extruding region as compared to the classical setup, lithosphere-scale indentation. Strong coupling across the subduction boundary allows for the transfer of stresses to the upper plate, where strain regimes are characterized by crustal thickening near a confined margin and dominated by lateral displacement of material near a weak lateral confinement. The strain regimes propagate laterally during ongoing convergence creating an area of overlap characterized by transpression. When subduction is oblique to the convergence direction, the upper plate is less deformed and as a consequence the amount of lateral extrusion decreases. In addition, strain is partitioned along the oblique plate boundary resulting in less subduction in expense of right lateral displacement close to the weak lateral confinement. Both oblique and orthogonal subduction models have a strong resemblance to lateral extrusion tectonics of the Eastern Alps (Europe), where subduction of the adjacent Adriatic plate beneath the Eastern Alps is debated. Our results imply that subduction of Adria is a valid mechanisms to induce extrusion-type deformation within the Eastern Alps lithosphere. Furthermore, our findings suggest that the Oligocene to Late Miocene structural evolution of the Eastern Alps reflects a phase of oblique subduction followed by a later stage of orthogonal subduction conform a Miocene shift in the plate motion of Adria. Oblique subduction also provides a viable mechanism to explain the rapid decrease in slab length of the Adriatic plate beneath the Eastern Alps

  20. The role of frictional strength on plate coupling at the subduction interface

    KAUST Repository

    Tan, Eh; Lavier, Luc L.; Van Avendonk, Harm J. A.; Heuret, Arnauld

    2012-01-01

    and serpentinized mantle (friction angle 1 to 15, or static friction coefficient 0.017 to 0.27) to control the amount of frictional coupling between the plates. With plastic strain weakening in the lithosphere, our numerical models can attain stable subduction

  1. Hafnium at subduction zones: isotopic budget of input and output fluxes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Marini, J.Ch.

    2004-05-01

    Subduction zones are the primary regions of mass exchanges between continental crust and mantle of Earth through sediment subduction toward the earth's mantle and by supply of mantellic magmas to volcanic arcs. We analyze these mass exchanges using Hafnium and Neodymium isotopes. At the Izu-Mariana subduction zone, subducting sediments have Hf and Nd isotopes equivalent to Pacific seawater. Altered oceanic crust has Hf and Nd isotopic compositions equivalent to the isotopic budget of unaltered Pacific oceanic crust. At Luzon and Java subduction zones, arc lavas present Hf isotopic ratios highly radiogenic in comparison to their Nd isotopic ratios. Such compositions of the Luzon and Java arc lavas are controlled by a contamination of their sources by the subducted oceanic sediments. (author)

  2. The dynamics of double slab subduction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holt, A. F.; Royden, L. H.; Becker, T. W.

    2017-04-01

    We use numerical models to investigate the dynamics of two interacting slabs with parallel trenches. Cases considered are: a single slab reference, outward dipping slabs (out-dip), inward dipping slabs (in-dip) and slabs dipping in the same direction (same-dip). Where trenches converge over time (same-dip and out-dip systems), large positive dynamic pressures in the asthenosphere are generated beneath the middle plate and large trench-normal extensional forces are transmitted through the middle plate. This results in slabs that dip away from the middle plate at depth, independent of trench geometry. The single slab, the front slab in the same-dip case and both out-dip slabs undergo trench retreat and exhibit stable subduction. However, slabs within the other double subduction systems tend to completely overturn at the base of the upper mantle, and exhibit either trench advance (rear slab in same-dip), or near-stationary trenches (in-dip). For all slabs, the net slab-normal dynamic pressure at 330 km depth is nearly equal to the slab-normal force induced by slab buoyancy. For double subduction, the net outward force on the slabs due to dynamic pressure from the asthenosphere is effectively counterbalanced by the net extensional force transmitted through the middle plate. Thus, dynamic pressure at depth, interplate coupling and lithospheric stresses are closely linked and their effects cannot be isolated. Our results provide insights into both the temporal evolution of double slab systems on Earth and, more generally, how the various components of subduction systems, from mantle flow/pressure to interplate coupling, are dynamically linked.

  3. Late Paleozoic-Early Mesozoic tectonic evolution of the Paleo-Asian Ocean: geochronological and geochemical evidence from granitoids in the northern margin of Alxa, Western China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sha, Xin; Wang, Jinrong; Chen, Wanfeng; Liu, Zheng; Zhai, Xinwei; Ma, Jinlong; Wang, Shuhua

    2018-03-01

    The Paleo-Asian Ocean (Southern Mongolian Ocean) ophiolitic belts and massive granitoids are exposed in the Alxa block, in response to oceanic subduction processes. In this work, we report petrographic, geochemical, and zircon U-Pb age data of some granitoid intrusions from the northern Alxa. Zircon U-Pb dating for the quartz diorite, tonalite, monzogranite, and biotite granite yielded weighted mean 206Pb/238U ages of 302±9.2 Ma, 246.5±4.6 Ma, 235±4.4 Ma, and 229.5±5.6 Ma, respectively. The quartz diorites ( 302 Ma) exhibit geochemical similarities to adakites, likely derived from partial melting of the initially subducted Chaganchulu back-arc oceanic slab. The tonalites ( 246.5 Ma) display geochemical affinities of I-type granites. They were probably derived by fractional crystallization of the modified lithospheric mantle-derived basaltic magmas in a volcanic arc setting. The monzogranites ( 235 Ma) are characterized by low Al2O3, but high Y and Yb with notably negative Eu anomalies. In contrast, the biotite granites ( 229.5 Ma) show high Al2O3 but low Y and Yb with steep HREE patterns and the absence of negative Eu anomalies. Elemental data suggested that the biotite granites were likely derived from a thickened lower crust, but the monzogranites originated from a thin crust. Our data suggested that the initial subduction of the Chaganchulu oceanic slab towards the Alxa block occurred at 302 Ma. This subduction process continued to the Early Triassic ( 246 Ma) and the basin was finally closed before the Middle Triassic ( 235 Ma). Subsequently, the break-off of the subducted slab triggered asthenosphere upwelling (240-230 Ma).

  4. Samovar: a thermomechanical code for modeling of geodynamic processes in the lithosphere-application to basin evolution

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Elesin, Y; Gerya, T; Artemieva, Irina

    2010-01-01

    We present a new 2D finite difference code, Samovar, for high-resolution numerical modeling of complex geodynamic processes. Examples are collision of lithospheric plates (including mountain building and subduction) and lithosphere extension (including formation of sedimentary basins, regions...... of extended crust, and rift zones). The code models deformation of the lithosphere with viscoelastoplastic rheology, including erosion/sedimentation processes and formation of shear zones in areas of high stresses. It also models steady-state and transient conductive and advective thermal processes including...... partial melting and magma transport in the lithosphere. The thermal and mechanical parts of the code are tested for a series of physical problems with analytical solutions. We apply the code to geodynamic modeling by examining numerically the processes of lithosphere extension and basin formation...

  5. The Southern Tyrrhenian subduction system: recent evolution and neotectonic implications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Argnani

    2000-06-01

    Full Text Available Geological and geophysical data have been integrated with the aim of presenting a new evolutionary model for the Southern Tyrrhenian and adjacent regions. The Southern Tyrrhenian backarc basin opened within a plate convergence regime because of sinking and rollback of the oceanic Ionian lithosphere. On the basis of seismological observations, I infer that the sinking slab was torn apart on either side in the last 2 Ma and this process controlled the neotectonics of the Southern Apennines - Tyrrhenian region. On the north-eastern side the slab broke off from NW to SE and this process triggered volcanism and NW-SE extension along the Eastern Tyrrhenian margin, and strike-slip tectonics along NW-SE trending faults in Northern Calabria. On the south-western side the slab broke off from W to E along the Aeolian Island alignment, although the tear has currently been reoriented along the NNW-SSE Malta escarpment. During its sinking the subducted slab also detached from the overriding plate, favouring the wedging of the asthenosphere between the two plates and the regional uplift of the Calabrian arc and surroundings. This regional uplift promoted gravitational instability within the orogenic wedge, particularly towards low topography areas; the large-scale sliding of the Calabrian arc towards the Ionian basin can be the cause of CW rotation and graben formation in Calabria. Also the E-dipping extensional faults of the Southern Apennines can be related to accommodation of vertical motions within the fold-and-thrust belt. The pattern of recent seismicity reflects this neotectonics where crustal-scale gravity deformation within the orogenic wedge is responsible for extensional earthquakes in Calabria and the Southern Apennines, whereas Africa plate convergence can account for compressional earthquakes in Sicily.

  6. The lithosphere-asthenosphere system in the Calabrian Arc and surrounding seas

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Panza, G F [Department of Earth Sciences, University of Trieste, Trieste (Italy); [Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics, SAND Group, Trieste (Italy)]. E-mail: panza@dst.univ.trieste.it; Pontevivo, A [Department of Earth Sciences, University of Trieste, Trieste (Italy)

    2002-10-01

    Through the non-linear inversion of Surface-Wave Tomography data, using as a priori constraints seismic data from literature, it has been possible to define a fairly detailed structural model of the lithosphere-asthenosphere system (thickness, S-wave and P-wave velocities of the crust and of the upper mantle layers) in the Calabrian Arc region (Southern Tyrrhenian Sea, Calabria and the Northern-Western part of the Ionian Sea). The main features identified by our study are: (1) a very shallow (less then 10 km deep) crust-mantle transition in the Southern Tyrrhenian Sea and very low S-wave velocities just below a very thin lid in correspondence of the submarine volcanic bodies in the study area; (2) a shallow and very low S-wave velocity layer in the mantle in the areas of Aeolian islands, of Vesuvius, Ischia and Phlegraean Fields, representing their shallow-mantle magma source; (3) a thickened continental crust and lithospheric doubling in Calabria; (4) a crust about 25 km thick and a mantle velocity profile versus depth consistent with the presence of a continental rifled, now thermally relaxed, lithosphere in the investigated part of the Ionian Sea; (5) the subduction of the Ionian lithosphere towards NW below the Tyrrhenian Basin; (6) the subduction of the Adriatic lithosphere underneath the Vesuvius and Phlegraean Fields. (author)

  7. Jurassic-Paleogene intra-oceanic magmatic evolution of the Ankara Mélange, North-Central Anatolia, Turkey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarifakioglu, E.; Dilek, Y.; Sevin, M.

    2013-11-01

    Oceanic rocks in the Ankara Mélange along the Izmir-Ankara-Erzincan suture zone (IAESZ) in North-Central Anatolia include locally coherent ophiolite complexes (~179 Ma and ~80 Ma), seamount or oceanic plateau volcanic units with pelagic and reefal limestones (96.6 ± 1.8 Ma), metamorphic rocks with ages of 187.4 ± 3.7 Ma, 158.4 ± 4.2 Ma, and 83.5 ± 1.2 Ma, and subalkaline to alkaline volcanic and plutonic rocks of an island arc origin (~67-63 Ma). All but the arc rocks occur in a shaly-graywacke and/or serpentinite matrix, and are deformed by south-vergent thrust faults and folds that developed in the Middle to Late Eocene due to continental collisions in the region. Ophiolitic volcanic rocks have mid-ocean ridge (MORB) and island arc tholeiite (IAT) affinities showing moderate to significant LILE enrichment and depletion in Nb, Hf, Ti, Y and Yb, which indicate the influence of subduction-derived fluids in their melt evolution. Seamount/oceanic plateau basalts show ocean island basalt (OIB) affinities. The arc-related volcanic rocks, lamprophyric dikes and syeno-dioritic plutons exhibit high-K shoshonitic to medium-to high-K calc-alkaline compositions with strong enrichment in LILE, REE and Pb, and initial ϵNd values between +1.3 and +1.7. Subalkaline arc volcanic units occur in the northern part of the mélange, whereas the younger alkaline volcanic rocks and intrusions (lamprophyre dikes and syeno-dioritic plutons) in the southern part. The Early to Late Jurassic and Late Cretaceous epidote-actinolite, epidote-chlorite and epidote-glaucophane schists represent the metamorphic units formed in a subduction channel in the Northern Neotethys. The Middle to Upper Triassic neritic limestones spatially associated with the seamount volcanic rocks indicate that the Northern Neotethys was an open ocean with its MORB-type oceanic lithosphere by the Early Triassic. The Latest Cretaceous-Early Paleocene island arc volcanic, dike and plutonic rocks with

  8. Intra-continental subduction and contemporaneous lateral extrusion of the upper plate: insights into Alps-Adria interactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Gelder, Inge; Willingshofer, Ernst; Sokoutis, Dimitrios; Cloetingh, Sierd

    2017-04-01

    A series of physical analogue experiments were performed to simulate intra-continental subduction contemporaneous with lateral extrusion of the upper plate to study the interferences between these two processes at crustal levels and in the lithospheric mantle. The lithospheric-scale models are specifically designed to represent the collision of the Adriatic microplate with the Eastern Alps, simulated by an intra-continental weak zone to initiate subduction and a weak confined margin perpendicular to the direction of convergence in order to allow for extrusion of the lithosphere. The weak confined margin is the analog for the opening of the Pannonian back-arc basin adjacent to the Eastern Alps with the direction of extension perpendicular to the strike of the orogen. The models show that intra-continental subduction and coeval lateral extrusion of the upper plate are compatible processes. The obtained deformation structures within the extruding region are similar compared to the classical setup where lateral extrusion is provoked by lithosphere-scale indentation. In the models a strong coupling across the subduction boundary allows for the transfer of abundant stresses to the upper plate, leading to laterally varying strain regimes that are characterized by crustal thickening near a confined margin and dominated by lateral displacement of material near a weak lateral confinement. During ongoing convergence the strain regimes propagate laterally, thereby creating an area of overlap characterized by transpression. In models with oblique subduction, with respect to the convergence direction, less deformation of the upper plate is observed and as a consequence the amount of lateral extrusion decreases. Additionally, strain is partitioned along the oblique plate boundary leading to less subduction in expense of right lateral displacement close to the weak lateral confinement. Both oblique and orthogonal subduction models have a strong resemblance to lateral extrusion

  9. U enrichment and Th/U fractionation in Archean boninites: Implications for paleo-ocean oxygenation and U cycling at juvenile subduction zones

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manikyamba, C.; Said, Nuru; Santosh, M.; Saha, Abhishek; Ganguly, Sohini; Subramanyam, K. S. V.

    2018-05-01

    Phanerozoic boninites record enrichments of U over Th, giving Th/U: 0.5-1.6, relative to intraoceanic island arc tholeiites (IAT) where Th/U averages 2.6. Uranium enrichment is attributed to incorporation of shallow, oxidized fluids, U-rich but Th-poor, from the slab into the melt column of boninites which form in near-trench to forearc settings of suprasubduction zone ophiolites. Well preserved Archean komatiite-tholeiite, plume-derived, oceanic volcanic sequences have primary magmatic Th/U ratios of 4.4-3.6, and Archean convergent margin IAT volcanic sequences, having REE and HFSE compositions similar to Phanerozoic IAT equivalents, preserve primary Th/U of 4-3.6. The best preserved Archean boninites of the 3.0 Ga Olondo and 2.7 Ga Gadwal greenstone belts, hosted in convergent margin ophiolite sequences, also show relative enrichments of U over Th, with low average Th/U ∼3 relative to coeval IAT, and Phanerozoic counterparts which are devoid of crustal contamination and therefore erupted in an intraoceanic setting, with minimal contemporaneous submarine hydrothermal alteration. Later enrichment of U is unlikely as Th-U-Nb-LREE patterns are coherent in these boninites whereas secondary effects induce dispersion of Th/U ratios. The variation in Th/U ratios from Archean to Phanerozoic boninites of greenstone belts to ophiolitic sequences reflect on genesis of boninitic lavas at different tectono-thermal regimes. Consequently, if the explanation for U enrichment in Phanerozoic boninites also applies to Archean examples, the implication is that U was soluble in oxygenated Archean marine water up to 600 Ma before the proposed great oxygenation event (GOE) at ∼2.4 Ga. This interpretation is consistent with large Ce anomalies in some hydrothermally altered Archean volcanic sequences aged 3.0-2.7 Ga.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riedel, M. R.

    2007-12-01

    ) Grain Boundary Migration in Metals, CRC Press, 385 pp., New York. Riedel MR, Karato S (1997) Grain-Size Evolution in Subducted Oceanic Lithosphere Associated with the Olivine- Spinel Transformation and Its Effects on Rheology. EPSL 148: 27-43. Liou JG, Hacker BR, Zhang RY (2000) Into the forbidden zone. Science 287, 1215-1216.

  11. Lithospheric Structure of the Incoming Nazca Plate Adjacent to the 2014 Iquique Earthquake Rupture Zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myers, E. K.; Trehu, A. M.; Davenport, K. K.; Roland, E. C.

    2017-12-01

    The 2014 Iquique Mw 8.1 earthquake occurred within a 500-km long segment of the Peru-Chile subduction zone that had not experienced a significant earthquake since 1877. This event did not fill the entire seismic gap and details of the deformation, along with local gravity anomalies, point to a geologic control on slip behavior. To better constrain along-strike changes in geologic or morphologic features and the correlation with earthquake rupture, the 2016 PICTURES (Pisagua-Iquique Crustal Tomography to Understand the Region of the Earthquake Source) experiment collected multichannel seismic (MCS) and ocean bottom seismometer (OBS) data from across the deformation front and incoming Nazca plate within the area of the 2014 earthquake. Here, we provide a first look at MCS reflection data from this experiment that images the Nazca plate along an uninterrupted 170 km line perpendicular to the region of greatest slip, acquired using the R/V Langseth's 12.5 km streamer and 6600 cc gun array. We summarize structural features of the incoming oceanic lithosphere and present a preliminary 2D velocity model that spans the Nazca outer rise to the trench along the Iquique Ridge (IR). The IR represents a broad, high oceanic feature (HOF) that roughly spans the entire seismic gap. The source of buoyancy and reduced seismic velocities of the IR swell are thought to be produced by isostatically compensated, overthickened crust or anomalously low density mantle due to heating or serpentinization, and we explore these two hypotheses using our preliminary velocity model. Past outer rise deformation modeling suggests a significant bending moment and vertical force at the trench axis, a source for broad, homogenous coupling as the HOF converges the margin. However, decreased incoming sediment and rough topography associated with numerous large seamounts may also lead to a thin subduction channel, influencing heterogeneous rupture behavior. Seaward of the Iquique 2014 event, our initial

  12. Subduction of a buoyant plateau at the Manila Trench: Tomographic evidence and geodynamic implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Jianke; Zhao, Dapeng; Dong, Dongdong

    2016-02-01

    We determined P-wave tomographic images by inverting a large number of arrival-time data from 2749 local earthquakes and 1462 teleseismic events, which are used to depict the three-dimensional morphology of the subducted Eurasian Plate along the northern segment of the Manila Trench. Dramatic changes in the dip angle of the subducted Eurasian Plate are revealed from the north to the south, being consistent with the partial subduction of a buoyant plateau beneath the Luzon Arc. Slab tears may exist along the edges of the buoyant plateau within the subducted plate induced by the plateau subduction, and the subducted lithosphere may be absent at depths greater than 250 km at ˜19°N and ˜21°N. The subducted buoyant plateau is possibly oriented toward NW-SE, and the subducted plate at ˜21°N is slightly steeper than that at ˜19°N. These results may explain why the western and eastern volcanic chains in the Luzon Arc are separated by ˜50 km at ˜18°N, whereas they converge into a single volcanic chain northward, which may be related to the oblique subduction along the Manila Trench caused by the northwestern movement of the Philippine Sea Plate. A low-velocity zone is revealed at depths of 20-200 km beneath the Manila Accretionary Prism at ˜22°N, suggesting that the subduction along the Manila Trench may stop there and the collision develops northward. The Taiwan Orogeny may originate directly from the subduction of the buoyant plateau, because the initial time of the Taiwan Orogeny is coincident with that of the buoyant plateau subduction.

  13. Fossil plume head beneath the Arabian lithosphere?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stein, Mordechai; Hofmann, Albrecht W.

    1992-12-01

    Phanerozoic alkali basalts from Israel, which have erupted over the past 200 Ma, have isotopic compositions similar to PREMA ("prevalent mantle") with narrow ranges of initial ɛ Nd(T) = +3.9-+5.9; 87Sr/ 86Sr(T)= 0.70292-0.70334; 206Pb/ 204Pb(T)= 18.88-19.99; 207Pb/ 204Pb(T)= 15.58-15.70; and 208Pb/ 204Pb(T)= 38.42-39.57. Their Nb/U(43 ± 9) and Ce/Pb(26 ± 6) ratios are identical to those of normal oceanic basalts, demonstrating that the basalts are essentially free of crustal contamination. Overall, the basalts are chemically and isotopically indistinguishable from many ordinary plume basalts, but no plume track can be identified. We propose that these and other, similar, magmas from the Arabian plate originated from a "fossilized" head of a mantle plume, which was unable to penetrate the continental lithosphere and was therefore trapped and stored beneath it. The plume head was emplaced some time between the late Proterozoic crust formation and the initiation of the Phanerozoic magmatic cycles. Basalts from rift environments in other continental localities show similar geochemistry to that of the Arabian basalts and their sources may also represent fossil plume heads trapped below the continents. We suggest that plume heads are, in general, characterized by the PREMA isotopic mantle signature, because the original plume sources (which may have HIMU or EM-type composition) have been diluted by overlying mantle material, which has been entrained by the plume heads during ascent. On the Arabian plate, rifting and thinning of the lithosphere caused partial melting of the stored plume, which led to periodic volcanism. In the late Cenozoic, the lithosphere broke up and the Red Sea opened. N-MORB tholeiites are now erupting in the central trough of the Red Sea, where the lithosphere has moved apart and the fossil plume has been exhausted, whereas E-MORBs are erupting in the northern and southern troughs, still tapping the plume reservoir. Fossil plumes, which are

  14. Migration Imaging of the Java Subduction Zones

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dokht, Ramin M. H.; Gu, Yu Jeffrey; Sacchi, Mauricio D.

    2018-02-01

    Imaging of tectonically complex regions can greatly benefit from dense network data and resolution enhancement techniques. Conventional methods in the analysis of SS precursors stack the waveforms to obtain an average discontinuity depth, but smearing due to large Fresnel zones can degrade the fine-scale topography on the discontinuity. To provide a partial solution, we introduce a depth migration algorithm based on the common scattering point method while considering nonspecular diffractions from mantle transition zone discontinuities. Our analysis indicates that, beneath the Sunda arc, the depth of the 410 km discontinuity (the 410) is elevated by 30 km and the 660 km discontinuity (the 660) is depressed by 20-40 km; the region of the strongest anticorrelation is correlated with the morphology of the subducting Indo-Australian slab. In eastern Java, a "flat" 410 coincides with a documented slab gap, showing length scales greater than 400 km laterally and 200 km vertically. This observation could be explained by the arrival of a buoyant oceanic plateau at the Java trench at approximately 8 Ma ago, which may have caused a temporary cessation of subduction and formed a tear in the subducting slab. Our results highlight contrasting depths of the 410 and 660 along the shallow-dipping slab below the Banda trench. The 660, however, becomes significantly uplifted beneath the Banda Sea, which is accompanied by enhanced reflection amplitudes. We interpret these observations as evidence for a subslab low-velocity zone, possibly related to the lower mantle upwelling beneath the subducting slab.

  15. Subduction, Extension, and a Mantle Plume in the Pacific Northwest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawley, W. B.; Allen, R. M.; Richards, M. A.

    2016-12-01

    Subduction zones are some of the most important systems that control the dynamics and evolution of the earth. The Cascadia Subduction Zone offers a unique natural laboratory for understanding the subduction process, and how subduction interacts with other large-scale geodynamical phenomena. The small size of the Juan de Fuca (JdF) plate and the proximity of the system to the Yellowstone Hotspot and the extensional Basin and Range province allow for detailed study of the effects these important systems have on each other. We present both a P-wave and an S-wave tomographic model of the Pacific Northwestern United States using regional seismic arrays, including the amphibious Cascadia Initiative. These models share important features, such as the Yellowstone plume, the subducting JdF slab, a gap in the subducting slab, and a low-velocity feature beneath the shallowest portions of the slab. But subtle differences in these features between the models—the size of the gap in the subducting JdF slab and the shape of the Yellowstone plume shaft above the transition zone, for example—provide physical insight into the interpretation of these models. The physics that we infer from our seismic tomography and other studies of the region will refine our understanding of subduction zones worldwide, and will help to identify targets for future amphibious seismic array studies. The discovery of a pronounced low-velocity feature beneath the JdF slab as it subducts beneath the coastal Pacific Northwest is, thus far, the most surprising result from our imaging work, and implies a heretofore unanticipated regime of dynamical interaction between the sublithospheric oceanic asthenosphere and the subduction process. Such discoveries are made possible, and rendered interpretable, by ever-increasing resolution that the Cascadia Initiative affords seismic tomography models.

  16. Philippine Sea Plate inception, evolution, and consumption with special emphasis on the early stages of Izu-Bonin-Mariana subduction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lallemand, Serge

    2016-12-01

    We compiled the most relevant data acquired throughout the Philippine Sea Plate (PSP) from the early expeditions to the most recent. We also analyzed the various explanatory models in light of this updated dataset. The following main conclusions are discussed in this study. (1) The Izanagi slab detachment beneath the East Asia margin around 60-55 Ma likely triggered the Oki-Daito plume occurrence, Mesozoic proto-PSP splitting, shortening and then failure across the paleo-transform boundary between the proto-PSP and the Pacific Plate, Izu-Bonin-Mariana subduction initiation and ultimately PSP inception. (2) The initial splitting phase of the composite proto-PSP under the plume influence at ˜54-48 Ma led to the formation of the long-lived West Philippine Basin and short-lived oceanic basins, part of whose crust has been ambiguously called "fore-arc basalts" (FABs). (3) Shortening across the paleo-transform boundary evolved into thrusting within the Pacific Plate at ˜52-50 Ma, allowing it to subduct beneath the newly formed PSP, which was composed of an alternance of thick Mesozoic terranes and thin oceanic lithosphere. (4) The first magmas rising from the shallow mantle corner, after being hydrated by the subducting Pacific crust beneath the young oceanic crust near the upper plate spreading centers at ˜49-48 Ma were boninites. Both the so-called FABs and the boninites formed at a significant distance from the incipient trench, not in a fore-arc position as previously claimed. The magmas erupted for 15 m.y. in some places, probably near the intersections between back-arc spreading centers and the arc. (5) As the Pacific crust reached greater depths and the oceanic basins cooled and thickened at ˜44-45 Ma, the composition of the lavas evolved into high-Mg andesites and then arc tholeiites and calc-alkaline andesites. (6) Tectonic erosion processes removed about 150-200 km of frontal margin during the Neogene, consuming most or all of the Pacific ophiolite

  17. Outer rise seismicity related to the Maule, Chile 2010 megathrust earthquake and hydration of the incoming oceanic lithosphere Sismicidad 'outer rise' relacionada con el mega terremoto de Maule, Chile en el 2010 e hidratación de la litósfera oceánica subductante

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eduardo Moscoso

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Most of the recent published geodetic models of the 2010 Maule, Chile mega-thrust earthquake (Mw=8.8 show a pronounced slip maximum of 15-20 m offshore Iloca (~35°S, indicating that co-seismic slip was largest north of the epicenter of the earthquake rupture area. A secondary slip maximum 8-10 m appears south of the epicenter west of the Arauco Peninsula. During the first weeks following the main shock and seaward of the main slip maximum, an outer rise seismic cluster of >450 events, mainly extensional, with magnitudes Mw=4-6 was formed. In contrast, the outer rise located seaward of the secondary slip maximum presents little seismicity. This observation suggests that outer rise seismicity following the Maule earthquake is strongly correlated with the heterogeneous coseismic slip distribution of the main megathrust event. In particular, the formation of the outer-rise seismic cluster in the north, which spatially correlates with the main maximum slip, is likely linked to strong extensional stresses transfered from the large slip of the subducting oceanic plate. In addition, high resolution bathymetric data reveals that bending-related faulting is more intense seaward of the main maximum slip, where well developed extensional faults strike parallel to the trench axis. Also published seismic constraints reveal reduced P-wave velocities in the uppermost mantle at the trench-outer rise region (7.5-7.8 km/s, which suggest serpentinization of the uppermost mantle. Seawater percolation up to mantle depths is likely driven by bending related-faulting at the outer rise. Water percolation into the upper mantle is expected to be more efficient during the co-seismic and early post-seismic periods of large megathrust earthquakes when intense extensional faulting of the oceanic lithosphere facilitates water infiltration seaward of the trench.La mayoría de los modelos geodésicos del terremoto de 2010 en la Región del Maule, Chile (Mw=8.8 muestran un

  18. Subduction and Plate Edge Tectonics in the Southern Caribbean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levander, A.; Schmitz, M.; Niu, F.; Bezada, M. J.; Miller, M. S.; Masy, J.; Ave Lallemant, H. G.; Pindell, J. L.; Bolivar Working Group

    2013-05-01

    The southern Caribbean plate boundary consists of a subduction zone at at either end of a complex strike-slip fault system: In the east at the Lesser Antilles subduction zone, the Atlantic part of the South American plate subducts beneath the Caribbean. In the north and west in the Colombia basin, the Caribbean subducts under South America. In a manner of speaking, the two plates subduct beneath each other. Finite-frequency teleseismic P-wave tomography confirms this, imaging the Atlantic and the Caribbean plates subducting steeply in opposite directions to transition zone depths under northern South America (Bezada et al, 2010). The two subduction zones are connected by the El Pilar-San Sebastian strike-slip fault system, a San Andreas scale system that has been cut off at the Bocono fault, the southeastern boundary fault of the Maracaibo block. A variety of seismic probes identify subduction features at either end of the system (Niu et al, 2007; Clark et al., 2008; Miller et al. 2009; Growdon et al., 2009; Huang et al., 2010; Masy et al, 2011). The El Pilar system forms at the southeastern corner of the Antilles subduction zone with the Atlantic plate tearing from South America. The deforming plate edges control mountain building and basin formation at the eastern end of the strike-slip system. Tearing the Atlantic plate from the rest of South America appears to cause further lithospheric instability continentward. In northwestern South America the Caribbean plate very likely also tears, as its southernmost element subducts at shallow angles under northernmost Colombia but then rapidly descends to the transition zone under Lake Maracaibo (Bezada et al., 2010). We believe that the flat slab controls the tectonics of the Neogene Merida Andes, Perija, and Santa Marta ranges. The nonsubducting part of the Caribbean plate also underthrusts northern Venezuela to about the width of the coastal mountains (Miller et al., 2009). We infer that the edge of the underthrust

  19. Lithospheric Structure of the Zagros and Alborz Mountain Belts (Iran) from Seismic Imaging

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paul, A.; Hatzfeld, D.; Kaviani, A.; Tatar, M.

    2008-12-01

    We present a synthesis of the results of two dense temporary passive seismic experiments installed for a few months across Central Zagros for the first one, and from North-western Zagros to Alborz for the second one. On both transects, the receiver function analysis shows that the crust has an average thickness of ~ 43 km beneath the Zagros fold-and-thrust belt and the Iranian plateau. The crust is thicker in the back side of the Main Zagros Reverse Fault (MZRF), with a larger maximum Moho depth in Central Zagros (69 ± 2 km) than in North-western Zagros (56 ± 2 km). To reconcile Bouguer anomaly data and Moho depth profile of Central Zagros, we proposed that the thickening is related to overthrusting of the Arabian margin by Central Iran on the MZRF considered as a major thrust fault rooted at Moho depth. The better-quality receiver functions of NW Zagros display clear conversions on a low-velocity channel which cross-cuts the whole crust from the surface trace of the MZRF to the Moho on 250-km length. Waveform modeling shows that the crustal LVZ is ~ 10-km thick with a S-wave velocity 8-30 % smaller than the average crustal velocity. We interpret the low-velocity channel as the trace of the thrust fault and the suture between the Arabian and the Iranian lithospheres. We favour the hypothesis of the LVZ being due to sediments of the Arabian margin dragged to depth during the subduction of the Neotethyan Ocean. At upper mantle depth, we find shield-like shear-wave velocities in the Arabian upper-mantle, and lower velocities in the Iranian shallow mantle (50-150 km) which are likely due to higher temperature. The lack of a high-velocity anomaly in the mantle northeast of the MZRF suture suggests that the Neotethian oceanic lithosphere is now detached from the Arabian margin. The crust of the Alborz mountain range is not thickened in relation with its high elevations, but its upper mantle has low P-wave velocities.

  20. Interaction between two subducting plates under Tokyo and its possible effects on seismic hazards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Francis; Okaya, David; Sato, Hiroshi; Hirata, Naoshi

    2007-09-01

    Underneath metropolitan Tokyo the Philippine Sea plate (PHS) subducts to the north on top of the westward subducting Pacific plate (PAC). New, relatively high-resolution tomography images the PHS as a well-defined subduction zone under western Kanto Plain. As PAC shoals under eastern Kanto, the PHS lithosphere is being thrusted into an increasingly tighter space of the PAC-Eurasian mantle wedge. As a result, zones of enhanced seismicity appear under eastern Kanto at the top of PHS, internal to PHS and also at its contact with PAC. These zones are located at depths greater than the causative fault of the disastrous 1923 Great Tokyo ``megathrust'' earthquake, in the vicinity of several well-located historical, damaging (M6 and M7) earthquakes. Thus a rather unique interaction between subducting plates under Tokyo may account for additional seismic hazards in metropolitan Tokyo.

  1. Imaging subducted slabs using seismic arrays in the Western Pacific

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bentham, H. L.; Rost, S.

    2010-12-01

    In recent years array seismology has been used extensively to image the small scale structure of the Earth. Such structure likely represents chemical heterogeneity and is therefore essential in our understanding of mantle convection and the composition of the Earth’s deep interior. As subduction is the main source of (re)introducing slab material into the Earth, it is of particular interest to track these heterogeneities. Resolving details of the composition and deformation of subducted lithosphere can help provide constraints on the subduction process, the composition of the mantle and mantle convection. This study uses seismic array techniques to map seismic heterogeneities associated with western Pacfic subduction zones, where a variety of slab geometries have been previously observed. Seismic energy arriving prior to the PP arrival was analysed at Eielson Array (ILAR), Alaska. More than 200 earthquakes were selected with Mw ≥ 6 and with epicentral distances of 90-110deg, giving a good coverage of the PP precursor (P*P) wavefield. Initial findings indicate that the observed P*P arrive out of plane and are likely a result of scattering. These scatterers are linked to the subduction of the Pacific Plate under the Philippine Sea in the Izu-Bonin and Mariana subduction zones. To enable efficient processing of large datasets, a robust automatic coherent (but unpredicted) arrival detector algorithm has been developed to select suitable precursors. Slowness and backazimuth were calculated for each precursor and were used in conjunction with P*P arrival times to back-raytrace the energy from the array to the scatterer location. Processing of the full dataset will help refine models regarding slab deformation as they descend into the mantle as well as unveiling the depth of their descent.

  2. The interplay between subduction and lateral extrusion : A case study for the European Eastern Alps based on analogue models

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Gelder, I. E.; Willingshofer, E.; Sokoutis, D.; Cloetingh, S. A.P.L.

    2017-01-01

    A series of analogue experiments simulating intra-continental subduction contemporaneous with lateral extrusion of the upper plate are performed to study the interference between these two processes at crustal levels and in the lithospheric mantle. The models demonstrate that intra-continental

  3. The potential influence of subduction zone polarity on overriding plate deformation, trench migration and slab dip angle

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schellart, W. P.

    2007-01-01

    A geodynamic model exists, the westward lithospheric drift model, in which the variety of overriding plate deformation, trench migration and slab dip angles is explained by the polarity of subduction zones. The model predicts overriding plate extension, a fixed trench and a steep slab dip for

  4. Geochronological Constraints on the Exhumation and Emplacement of Subcontinental Lithospheric Mantle Peridotites in the Westernmost Mediterranean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garrido, Carlos J.; Hidas, Károly; Marchesi, Claudio; Varas-Reus, María Isabel; Booth-Rea, Guillermo

    2017-04-01

    Exhumation of subcontinental mantle peridotite in the Western Mediterranean has been attributed to different tectonic processes including pure extension, transpression, or alternating contractive and extensional processes related with continental subduction followed by extension, before final their contractive intracrustal emplacement. Any model trying to explain the exhumation and emplacement of subcontinental lithospheric mantle peridotites in the westernmost Mediterranean should take into account the available geochronological constraints, as well as the petrological and geochemical processes that lead to internal tectono-magmatic zoning so characteristic of the Betic and Rif orogenic peridotites. Different studies have suggested a Hercynian, Cenozoic-Mesozoic or an Alpine age for the late tectono-magmatic evolution and intra-crustal emplacement of Betic-Rif peridotites. The pervasive presence of Mesozoic U-Pb zircon ages in Ronda UHP and HP garnet pyroxenites does not support a Hercynian age for the intracrustal emplacement of the peridotite. A hyper-extended margin setting for is in good agreement with the Jurassic extensional event that pervasively affected ALKAPECA terrains (i.e. the Alboran, Kabylides, Peloritani, and Calabria domains) in the western Mediterranean due to the opening of the Piemonte-Ligurian Ocean. However, a Jurassic age and a passive margin tectonic setting do not account, among other observations, for the late Miocene thermochronological ages recorded in zircons rims (U-Pb) and garnets (Lu-Hf) in garnet pyroxenites from the Betic-Rif peridotites, the pervasive Miocene resetting of U-Pb zircon and monazite ages in the overlying Jubrique crustal section, the supra-subduction radiogenic signature of late pyroxenite intrusive dikes in the Ronda peridotite, and the arc tholeiitic affinity of late mantle-derived, gabbroic dykes intruding in the Ronda and Ojen plagioclase lherzolites. These data are more consistent with a supra-subduction

  5. Mineralogy of subducted clay and clay restite in the lower mantle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Armstrong, L.; Skora, S. E.; Walter, M. J.

    2012-12-01

    Seismic tomography indicates that subducting oceanic lithosphere often penetrates the transition zone and eventually the lower mantle [e.g. 1, 2]. While mineralogical changes in the mafic and ultramafic portions of slabs have been well documented experimentally, the phase relations of overlying sediments at pressures above 25 GPa remain poorly studied. This is in part because sediments are expected to partially melt at sub-arc depth (P~2.5-4.5 GPa), and contribute to the genesis of arc magmas. Sediment restites left behind after the extraction of low pressure melts undergo major chemical changes, according to the melting reaction: Coe+Phen+Cpx+H2O = Grt+Ky+Melt [3]. However, sediments may not always melt depending on the thermal regime and volatile availability and composition [3]. Hence, chemically unmodified sediments as well as restites may be entrained to greater depths and contribute to compositional heterogeneity in the deep mantle. Indeed, mineral inclusions with compositions indicative of subducted sedimentary protoliths (CAS-phase; K-hollandite; stishovite) have been reported in 'ultradeep' diamonds and suggest that deep subduction and survival of sediments occurs to at least transition zone depths [4]. With this in mind, we have performed laser heated diamond anvil cell experiments at pressures of 8-80 GPa on two anhydrous glass starting materials: a marine clay and the restite that is left after 50% melt extraction of this clay at 3 GPa and 800 °C [3]. We chose to work with an anhydrous version of the marine clay given that the investigated pressure range exceeds that of phengite stability [5], and phengite is the only hydrous phase in subducted sediments at UHP conditions. The clay was heated along a P-T path representative of a cold subduction geotherm, whereas the clay restite was heated along a hotter subduction geotherm consistent with low pressure melting. Phases were identified by synchrotron X-ray micro-diffraction at beamline I15 of the Diamond

  6. Ocean deformation processes at the Caribbean-North America-South America triple junction: Initial results of the 2007 ANTIPLAC marine survey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benard, F.; Deville, E.; Le Drezen, E.; Loubrieu, B.; Maltese, L.; Patriat, M.; Roest, W.; Thereau, E.; Umber, M.; Vially, R.

    2007-12-01

    Marine geophysical data (multibeam and seismic lines) acquired in 2007 (ANTIPLAC survey) in the North-South Americas-Caribbean triple point (Central Atlantic, Barracuda and Tiburon ridges area), provide information about the structure, the tectonic processes and the timing of the deformation in this large diffuse zone of polyphase deformation. The deformation of the plate boundary between the north and south Americas is distributed on several structures located in the Atlantic plain, at the front of the Barbados accretionary prism. In this area of deformation of the Atlantic oceanic lithosphere, the main depressions and transform troughs are filled by Late Pliocene-Pleistocene turbidite sediments, especially in the Barracuda trough, north of Barracuda ridge. These sediments are not issued from the Lesser Antilles volcanic arc but they are sourced from the East, probably by the Orinoco turbidite distal system, through channels transiting in the Atlantic abyssal plain. These Late Pliocene- Quaternary sediments show locally spectacular evidences of syntectonic deformation. It can be shown notably that Barracuda ridge includes a pre-existing transform fault system which has been folded and uplifted very recently during Pleistocene times. This recent deformation has generate relieves up to 2 km high with associated erosion processes notably along the northern flank the Barracuda ridge. The subduction of these recently deformed ridges induces deformation of earlier structures within the Barbados accretionary prism. These asperities within the Atlantic oceanic lithosphere which is subducted in the Lesser Antilles active margin are correlated with the zone of intense seismic activity below the volcanic arc.

  7. How broad and deep is the region of chemical alteration of oceanic plates at trenches?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ranero, C. R.; Grevemeyer, I.; Barckhausen, U.

    2017-12-01

    Different lines of evidence indicate that oceanic plates are affected by pervasive bending-related deformation approaching ocean trenches. Results from active-seismic work support that deformation provides paths for exchange between hydrosphere and lithosphere, possibly causing chemical alteration of the incoming lithosphere. Much work focused on the potential transformation of peridotite to serpentine in the uppermost mantle of incoming plates, but there is no consensus on the region where it may occur or the intensity of alteration, let alone on limiting factors for the process. Teleseismic (large-great) earthquakes with normal-fault mechanism in the outer rise region have been often called to speculate on the depth of penetration of plate hydration. However, large-great outer-rise earthquakes may be related to stress changes due to slab pull after decoupling along the inter-plate boundary, and not necessarily controlled by bending stresses only. If so, the majority of the time the depth of water percolation may be related to local bending stresses expressed by micro-earthquakes rather than large events. Seismic images and multibeam bathymetry from lithosphere of similar thermal thickness from different trenches display a remarkable variability of the intensity of bending-related deformation along the subduction zones where plate age does not change significantly indicating that the intensity of deformation (not the depth) and perhaps hydration is very variable in space and not controlled by plate age. Seismic images showing hundreds of kilometers perpendicular to the trench into the incoming plate show that the bending-related deformation reaches mantle under the outer rise, well before the lithosphere plunges into the trench and develops the marked bend-faulting fabric observable in bathymetric maps. Thus, alteration occurs in a hundreds-of-km wide area, with deformation intensity related to local characteristics, and deformation depth to plate age.

  8. Lithosphere erosion atop mantle plumes

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-12-01

    Mantle plumes are traditionally proposed to play an important role in lithosphere erosion. Seismic images beneath Hawaii and Cape Verde show a lithosphere-asthenosphere-boundary (LAB) up to 50 km shallower than the surroundings. However, numerical models show that unless the plate is stationary the thermo-mechanical erosion of the lithosphere does not exceed 30 km. We use 2D petrological-thermo-mechanical numerical models based on a finite-difference method on a staggered grid and marker in cell method to study the role of partial melting on the plume-lithosphere interaction. A homogeneous peridotite composition with a Newtonian temperature- and pressure-dependent viscosity is used to simulate both the plate and the convective mantle. A constant velocity, ranging from 5 to 12.5 cm/yr, is imposed at the top of the plate. Plumes are created by imposing a thermal anomaly of 150 to 350 K on a 50 km wide domain at the base of the model (700 km depth); the plate right above the thermal anomaly is 40 Myr old. Partial melting is modeled using batch-melting solidus and liquidus in anhydrous conditions. We model the progressive depletion of peridotite and its effect on partial melting by assuming that the melting degree only strictly increases through time. Melt is accumulated until a porosity threshold is reached and the melt in excess is then extracted. The rheology of the partially molten peridotite is determined using viscous constitutive relationship based on a contiguity model, which enables to take into account the effects of grain-scale melt distribution. Above a threshold of 1%, melt is instantaneously extracted. The density varies as a function of partial melting degree and extraction. Besides, we analyze the kinematics of the plume as it impacts a moving plate, the dynamics of time-dependent small-scale convection (SSC) instabilities developing in the low-viscosity layer formed by spreading of hot plume material at the lithosphere base, and the resulting thermal

  9. Noble gas composition of subcontinental lithospheric mantle: An extensively degassed reservoir beneath Southern Patagonia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jalowitzki, Tiago; Sumino, Hirochika; Conceição, Rommulo V.; Orihashi, Yuji; Nagao, Keisuke; Bertotto, Gustavo W.; Balbinot, Eduardo; Schilling, Manuel E.; Gervasoni, Fernanda

    2016-09-01

    Patagonia, in the Southern Andes, is one of the few locations where interactions between the oceanic and continental lithosphere can be studied due to subduction of an active spreading ridge beneath the continent. In order to characterize the noble gas composition of Patagonian subcontinental lithospheric mantle (SCLM), we present the first noble gas data alongside new lithophile (Sr-Nd-Pb) isotopic data for mantle xenoliths from Pali-Aike Volcanic Field and Gobernador Gregores, Southern Patagonia. Based on noble gas isotopic compositions, Pali-Aike mantle xenoliths represent intrinsic SCLM with higher (U + Th + K)/(3He, 22Ne, 36Ar) ratios than the mid-ocean ridge basalt (MORB) source. This reservoir shows slightly radiogenic helium (3He/4He = 6.84-6.90 RA), coupled with a strongly nucleogenic neon signature (mantle source 21Ne/22Ne = 0.085-0.094). The 40Ar/36Ar ratios vary from a near-atmospheric ratio of 510 up to 17700, with mantle source 40Ar/36Ar between 31100-6800+9400 and 54000-9600+14200. In addition, the 3He/22Ne ratios for the local SCLM endmember, at 12.03 ± 0.15 to 13.66 ± 0.37, are higher than depleted MORBs, at 3He/22Ne = 8.31-9.75. Although asthenospheric mantle upwelling through the Patagonian slab window would result in a MORB-like metasomatism after collision of the South Chile Ridge with the Chile trench ca. 14 Ma, this mantle reservoir could have remained unhomogenized after rapid passage and northward migration of the Chile Triple Junction. The mantle endmember xenon isotopic ratios of Pali-Aike mantle xenoliths, which is first defined for any SCLM-derived samples, show values indistinguishable from the MORB source (129Xe/132Xe =1.0833-0.0053+0.0216 and 136Xe/132Xe =0.3761-0.0034+0.0246). The noble gas component observed in Gobernador Gregores mantle xenoliths is characterized by isotopic compositions in the MORB range in terms of helium (3He/4He = 7.17-7.37 RA), but with slightly nucleogenic neon (mantle source 21Ne/22Ne = 0.065-0.079). We

  10. The role of frictional strength on plate coupling at the subduction interface

    KAUST Repository

    Tan, Eh

    2012-10-01

    At a subduction zone the amount of friction between the incoming plate and the forearc is an important factor in controlling the dip angle of subduction and the structure of the forearc. In this paper, we investigate the role of the frictional strength of sediments and of the serpentinized peridotite on the evolution of convergent margins. In numerical models, we vary thickness of a serpentinized layer in the mantle wedge (15 to 25km) and the frictional strength of both the sediments and serpentinized mantle (friction angle 1 to 15, or static friction coefficient 0.017 to 0.27) to control the amount of frictional coupling between the plates. With plastic strain weakening in the lithosphere, our numerical models can attain stable subduction geometry over millions of years. We find that the frictional strength of the sediments and serpentinized peridotite exerts the largest control on the dip angle of the subduction interface at seismogenic depths. In the case of low sediment and serpentinite friction, the subduction interface has a shallow dip, while the subduction zone develops an accretionary prism, a broad forearc high, a deep forearc basin, and a shallow trench. In the high friction case, the subduction interface is steep, the trench is deeper, and the accretionary prism, forearc high and basin are all absent. The resultant free-air gravity and topographic signature of these subduction zone models are consistent with observations. We believe that the low-friction model produces a geometry and forearc structure similar to that of accretionary margins. Conversely, models with high friction angles in sediments and serpentinite develop characteristics of an erosional convergent margin. We find that the strength of the subduction interface is critical in controlling the amount of coupling at the seismogenic zone and perhaps ultimately the size of the largest earthquakes at subduction zones. © 2012. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.

  11. Geophysical Exploration Technologies for the Deep Lithosphere Research: An Education Materials for High School Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, H.; Xu, C.; Luo, S.; Chen, H.; Qin, R.

    2012-12-01

    important for understanding the large-scale structure of the earth's crust under major geographic features, such as mountain ranges, oceanic ridges and subduction zones. Short wave length residual anomalies are due to shallow anomalous masses that may be of interest for commercial exploitation. The last part is the magnetotellurics (MT), which is an electromagnetic geophysical method of imaging the earth's subsurface by measuring natural variations of electrical and magnetic fields at the Earth's surface. The long-period MT technique is used to exploration deep crustal. MT has been used to investigate the distribution of silicate melts in the Earth's mantle and crust and to better understand the plate-tectonic processes.

  12. Subduction on Venus and Implications for Volatile Cycling, Early Earth and Exoplanets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smrekar, S. E.; Davaille, A.; Mueller, N. T.; Dyar, M. D.; Helbert, J.; Barnes, H.

    2017-12-01

    Plate tectonics plays a key role in long-term climate evolution by cycling volatiles between the interior, surface and atmosphere. Subduction is a critical process. It is the first step in transitioning between a stagnant and a mobile lid, a means for conveying volatiles into the mantle, and a mechanism for creating felsic crust. Laboratory experiments using realistic rheology illuminate the deformation produced by plume-induced subduction (Davaille abstract). Characteristics include internal rifting and volcanism, external rift branches, with a partial arc of subduction creating a trench on the margins of the plume head, and an exterior flexural bulge with small strain extension perpendicular to the trench. These characteristics, along with a consistent gravity signature, occur at the two largest coronae (quasi-circular volcano-tectonic features) on Venus (Davaille et al. Nature Geos. 2017). This interpretation resolves a long-standing debate about the dual plume and subduction characteristics of these features. Numerous coronae also show signs of plume-induced subduction. At Astkhik Planum, subduction appears to have migrated beyond the margins of Selu Corona to create a 1600 km-long, linear subduction zone, along Vaidilute Rupes. The fractures that define Selu Corona merge with the trench to the north and a rift zone to the east, consistent with plume-induced subduction migrating outward from the corona. The lithosphere and crust are much thinner here than in other potential subduction zones. Subduction appears to have generated massive volcanism which could explain the 400 m elevation of the plateau. Within the plateau there are low-viscosity flow sets nearly 1000 km that may be associated with near infrared low emissivity in VIRTIS data. Unusual lava compositions might be indicative of recycling of CO2 or other volatiles into the lithosphere. Little evidence exists to illustrate how plate tectonics initiated on Earth, but Venus' high surface temperature makes

  13. Reconstructing in space and time the closure of the middle and western segments of the Bangong-Nujiang Tethyan Ocean in the Tibetan Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Jian-Jun; Li, Cai; Wang, Ming; Xie, Chao-Ming

    2018-01-01

    When and how the Bangong-Nujiang Tethyan Ocean closed is a highly controversial subject. In this paper, we present a detailed study and review of the Cretaceous ophiolites, ocean islands, and flysch deposits in the middle and western segments of the Bangong-Nujiang suture zone (BNSZ), and the Cretaceous volcanic rocks, late Mesozoic sediments, and unconformities within the BNSZ and surrounding areas. Our aim was to reconstruct the spatial-temporal patterns of the closing of the middle and western segments of the Bangong-Nujiang Tethyan Ocean. Our conclusion is that the closure of the ocean started during the Late Jurassic and was mainly complete by the end of the Early Cretaceous. The closure of the ocean involved both "longitudinal diachronous closure" from north to south and "transverse diachronous closure" from east to west. The spatial-temporal patterns of the closure process can be summarized as follows: the development of the Bangong-Nujiang Tethyan oceanic lithosphere and its subduction started before the Late Jurassic; after the Late Jurassic, the ocean began to close because of the compressional regime surrounding the BNSZ; along the northern margin of the Bangong-Nujiang Tethyan Ocean, collisions involving the arcs, back-arc basins, and marginal basins of a multi-arc basin system first took place during the Late Jurassic-early Early Cretaceous, resulting in regional uplift and the regional unconformity along the northern margin of the ocean and in the Southern Qiangtang Terrane on the northern side of the ocean. However, the closure of the Bangong-Nujiang Tethyan Ocean cannot be attributed to these arc-arc and arc-continent collisions, because subduction and the development of the Bangong-Nujiang Tethyan oceanic lithosphere continued until the late Early Cretaceous. The gradual closure of the middle and western segments of Bangong-Nujiang Tethyan Ocean was diachronous from east to west, starting in the east in the middle Early Cretaceous, and being mainly

  14. Carbonation by fluid-rock interactions at high-pressure conditions: Implications for carbon cycling in subduction zones

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piccoli, Francesca; Vitale Brovarone, Alberto; Beyssac, Olivier; Martinez, Isabelle; Ague, Jay J.; Chaduteau, Carine

    2016-07-01

    Carbonate-bearing lithologies are the main carbon carrier into subduction zones. Their evolution during metamorphism largely controls the fate of carbon, regulating its fluxes between shallow and deep reservoirs. Recent estimates predict that almost all subducted carbon is transferred into the crust and lithospheric mantle during subduction metamorphism via decarbonation and dissolution reactions at high-pressure conditions. Here we report the occurrence of eclogite-facies marbles associated with metasomatic systems in Alpine Corsica (France). The occurrence of these marbles along major fluid-conduits as well as textural, geochemical and isotopic data indicating fluid-mineral reactions are compelling evidence for the precipitation of these carbonate-rich assemblages from carbonic fluids during metamorphism. The discovery of metasomatic marbles brings new insights into the fate of carbonic fluids formed in subducting slabs. We infer that rock carbonation can occur at high-pressure conditions by either vein-injection or chemical replacement mechanisms. This indicates that carbonic fluids produced by decarbonation reactions and carbonate dissolution may not be directly transferred to the mantle wedge, but can interact with slab and mantle-forming rocks. Rock-carbonation by fluid-rock interactions may have an important impact on the residence time of carbon and oxygen in subduction zones and lithospheric mantle reservoirs as well as carbonate isotopic signatures in subduction zones. Furthermore, carbonation may modulate the emission of CO2 at volcanic arcs over geological time scales.

  15. Lithospheric thermal-rheological structure of the Ordos Basin and its geodynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, J.; Huang, F.; He, L.; Wu, Q.

    2015-12-01

    The study on the destruction of the North China Craton has always been one of the hottest issues in earth sciences.Both mechanism and spatial variation are debated fiercely, still unclear.However, geothermal research on the subject is relatively few. Ordos Basin, located in the west of the North China Craton, is a typical intraplate. Based on two-dimensional thermal modeling along a profile across Ordos Basin from east to west, obtained the lithospheric thermal structure and rheology. Mantle heat flow in different regions of Ordos Basin is from 21.2 to 24.5 mW/m2. In the east mantle heat flow is higher while heat flow in western region is relatively low. But mantle heat flow is smooth and low overall, showing a stable thermal background. Ratio of crustal and mantle heat flow is between 1.51 and 1.84, indicating that thermal contribution from shallow crust is lower than that from the mantle. Rheological characteristics along the profile are almost showed as "jelly sandwich" model and stable continental lithosphere structure,which is represent by a weak crust portion but a strong lithospheric mantle portion in vertical strength profile. Based on above , both thermal structure and lithospheric rheology of Ordos Basin illustrate that tectonic dynamics environment in the west of North China Craton is relatively stable. By the study on lithospheric thermal structure, we focus on the disparity in thickness between the thermal lithosphere and seismic lithosphere.The difference in western Ordos Basin is about 140km, which decreases gradually from Fenwei graben in the eastern Ordos Basin to the Bohai Bay Basin.That is to say the difference decreases gradually from the west to the east of North China Craton.The simulation results imply that viscosity of the asthenosphere under North China Craton also decreases gradually from west to east, confirming that dehydration of the Pacific subduction is likely to have great effect on the North China Craton.

  16. Slab-derived components in the subcontinental lithospheric mantle beneath Chilean Patagonia: Geochemistry and Sr-Nd-Pb isotopes of mantle xenoliths and host basalt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jalowitzki, Tiago; Gervasoni, Fernanda; Conceição, Rommulo V.; Orihashi, Yuji; Bertotto, Gustavo W.; Sumino, Hirochika; Schilling, Manuel E.; Nagao, Keisuke; Morata, Diego; Sylvester, Paul

    2017-11-01

    In subduction zones, ultramafic xenoliths hosted in alkaline basalts can yield significant information about the role of potential slab-derived components in the subcontinental lithospheric mantle (SCLM). Chemical and isotopic heterogeneities in such xenoliths are usually interpreted to reflect melt extraction followed by metasomatic re-enrichment. Here we report new whole-rock major, trace element and isotopic (Sr-Nd-Pb) data for a Proterozoic suite of 17 anhydrous spinel-lherzolites and Eocene (new K-Ar data) host alkaline basalt found near Coyhaique ( 46°S), Aysén Region, Chile. These Patagonian nodules are located in a current back-arc position, 100 km east of the present day volcanic arc and 320 km from the Chile Trench. The mantle xenoliths consist of coarse- to medium-grained spinel-lherzolites with trace element compositions characteristic of a subduction zone setting, such as pronounced negative Nb, Ta and Ti anomalies coupled with significant enrichment of LILEs (e.g., U) and chalcophile elements (W, Pb and Sn). Most of them are characterized by flat to depleted light-rare earth element (LREE) patterns (Ce/YbN = 0.6-1.1) coupled with less radiogenic Sr-Pb (87Sr/86Sr = 0.702422-0.703479; 206Pb/204Pb = 18.212-18.539) and more radiogenic Nd isotopic compositions (143Nd/144Nd = 0.512994-0.513242), similar to the depleted mantle component (DMM or PREMA). In contrast, samples with slight LREE enrichment (Ce/YbN = 1.3-1.8) show more radiogenic Sr-Pb (87Sr/86Sr = 0.703791-0.704239; 206Pb/204Pb = 18.572-18.703) and less radiogenic Nd isotopic compositions (143Nd/144Nd = 0.512859-0.512934), similar to the EM-2 reservoir. These new geochemical and isotope data suggest that the Coyhaique spinel-lherzolites are derived from a heterogeneous SCLM resulting from mixing between a depleted mantle component and up to 10% of slab-derived components. The enriched component added to the SCLM represents variable extents of melts of both subducted Chile Trench sediments and

  17. Earthquake nucleation in weak subducted carbonates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurzawski, Robert M.; Stipp, Michael; Niemeijer, André R.; Spiers, Christopher J.; Behrmann, Jan H.

    2016-09-01

    Ocean-floor carbonate- and clay-rich sediments form major inputs to subduction zones, especially at low-latitude convergent plate margins. Therefore, knowledge of their frictional behaviour is fundamental for understanding plate-boundary earthquakes. Here we report results of mechanical tests performed on simulated fault gouges prepared from ocean-floor carbonates and clays, cored during IODP drilling offshore Costa Rica. Clay-rich gouges show internal friction coefficients (that is, the slope of linearized shear stress versus normal stress data) of μint = 0.44 - 0.56, irrespective of temperature and pore-fluid pressure (Pf). By contrast, μint for the carbonate gouge strongly depends on temperature and pore-fluid pressure, with μint decreasing dramatically from 0.84 at room temperature and Pf = 20 MPa to 0.27 at T = 140 °C and Pf = 120 MPa. This effect provides a fundamental mechanism of shear localization and earthquake generation in subduction zones, and makes carbonates likely nucleation sites for plate-boundary earthquakes. Our results imply that rupture nucleation is prompted by a combination of temperature-controlled frictional instability and temperature- and pore-pressure-dependent weakening of calcareous fault gouges.

  18. Lithospheric structure of northwest Africa: Insights into the tectonic history and influence of mantle flow on large-scale deformation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Meghan S.; Becker, Thorsten

    2014-05-01

    Northwest Africa is affected by late stage convergence of Africa with Eurasia, the Canary Island hotspot, and bounded by the Proterozoic-age West African craton. We present seismological evidence from receiver functions and shear-wave splitting along with geodynamic modeling to show how the interactions of these tectonic features resulted in dramatic deformation of the lithosphere. We interpret seismic discontinuities from the receiver functions and find evidence for localized, near vertical-offset deformation of both crust-mantle and lithosphere-asthenosphere interfaces at the flanks of the High Atlas. These offsets coincide with the locations of Jurassic-aged normal faults that have been reactivated during the Cenozoic, further suggesting that inherited, lithospheric-scale zones of weakness were involved in the formation of the Atlas. Another significant step in lithospheric thickness is inferred within the Middle Atlas. Its location corresponds to the source of regional Quaternary alkali volcanism, where the influx of melt induced by the shallow asthenosphere appears restricted to a lithospheric-scale fault on the northern side of the mountain belt. Inferred stretching axes from shear-wave splitting are aligned with the topographic grain in the High Atlas, suggesting along-strike asthenospheric shearing in a mantle channel guided by the lithospheric topography. Isostatic modeling based on our improved lithospheric constraints indicates that lithospheric thinning alone does not explain the anomalous Atlas topography. Instead, an mantle upwelling induced by a hot asthenospheric anomaly appears required, likely guided by the West African craton and perhaps sucked northward by subducted lithosphere beneath the Alboran. This dynamic support scenario for the Atlas also suggests that the timing of uplift is contemporaneous with the recent volcanismin the Middle Atlas.

  19. Controls on intrusion of near-trench magmas of the Sanak-Baranof Belt, Alaska, during Paleogene ridge subduction, and consequences for forearc evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kusky, Timothy M.; Bradley, Dwight C.; Donely, D. Thomas; Rowley, David; Haeussler, Peter J.

    2003-01-01

    have sheeted margins and appear to have intruded along extensional jogs in margin-parallel strike-slip faults, whereas others form significant angles with the main faults and may have been influenced by minor faults of other orientations. Some of the plutons of the Sanak-Baranof belt have their long axes oriented parallel to faults of an orthorhombic fault set, implying that these faults may have provided a conduit for magma emplacement. This orthorhombic set of late faults is interpreted to have initially formed during the ridge subduction event, and continued to be active for a short time after passage of the triple junction. ENE-striking dextral faults of this orthorhombic fault system exhibit mutually crosscutting relationships with Eocene dikes related to ridge subduction, and mineralized strike-slip and normal faults of this system have yielded 40Ar/39Ar ages identical to near-trench intrusives related to ridge subduction. Movement on the orthorhombic fault system accommodated exhumation of deeper levels of the southern Alaska accretionary wedge, which is interpreted as a critical taper adjustment to subduction of younger oceanic lithosphere during ridge subduction. These faults therefore accommodate both deformation of the wedge and assisted emplacement of near-trench plutons. Structures that crosscut the plutons and aureoles include the orthorhombic fault set and dextral strike-slip faults, reflecting a new kinematic regime established after ridge subduction, during underthrusting of the trailing oceanic plate with new dextral-oblique convergence vectors with the overriding plate. The observation that the orthorhombic fault set both cuts and is cut by Eocene intrusives demonstrates the importance of these faults for magma emplacement in the forearc.A younger, ca. 35 Ma suite of plutons intrudes the Chugach terrane in the Prince William Sound region, and their intrusion geometry was strongly influenced by pre-existing faults developed during ridge subduction

  20. Subduction in the Southern Caribbean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levander, A.; Schmitz, M.; Bezada, M.; Masy, J.; Niu, F.; Pindell, J.

    2012-04-01

    The southern Caribbean is bounded at either end by subduction zones: In the east at the Lesser Antilles subduction zone the Atlantic part of the South American plate subducts beneath the Caribbean. In the north and west under the Southern Caribbean Deformed Belt accretionary prism, the Caribbean subducts under South America. In a manner of speaking, the two plates subduct beneath each other. Finite-frequency teleseismic P-wave tomography confirms this, imaging the Atlantic and the Caribbean subducting steeply in opposite directions to transition zone depths under northern South America (Bezada et al, 2010). The two subduction zones are connected by the El Pilar-San Sebastian strike-slip fault system, a San Andreas scale system. A variety of seismic probes identify where the two plates tear as they begin to subduct (Niu et al, 2007; Clark et al., 2008; Miller et al. 2009; Masy et al, 2009). The El Pilar system forms at the southeastern corner of the Antilles subduction zone by the Atlantic tearing from South America. The deforming plate edges control mountain building and basin formation at the eastern end of the strike-slip system. In northwestern South America the Caribbean plate tears, its southernmost element subducting at shallow angles under northernmost Colombia and then rapidly descending to transition zone depths under Lake Maracaibo (Bezada et al., 2010). We believe that the flat slab produces the Merida Andes, the Perija, and the Santa Marta ranges. The southern edge of the nonsubducting Caribbean plate underthrusts northern Venezuela to about the width of the coastal mountains (Miller et al., 2009). We infer that the underthrust Caribbean plate supports the coastal mountains, and controls continuing deformation.

  1. Satellite gravity gradient views help reveal the Antarctic lithosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferraccioli, F.; Ebbing, J.; Pappa, F.; Kern, M.; Forsberg, R.

    2017-12-01

    Here we present and analyse satellite gravity gradient signatures derived from GOCE and superimpose these on tectonic and bedrock topography elements, as well as seismically-derived estimates of crustal thickness for the Antarctic continent. The GIU satellite gravity component images the contrast between the thinner crust and lithosphere underlying the West Antarctic Rift System and the Weddell Sea Rift System and the thicker lithosphere of East Antarctica. The new images also suggest that more distributed wide-mode lithospheric and crustal extension affects both the Ross Sea Embayment and the less well known Ross Ice Shelf segment of the rift system. However, this pattern is less clear towards the Bellingshousen Embayment, indicating that the rift system narrows towards the southern edge of the Antarctic Peninsula. In East Antarctica, the satellite gravity data provides new views into the Archean to Mesoproterozoic Terre Adelie Craton, and clearly shows the contrast wrt to the crust and lithosphere underlying both the Wilkes Subglacial Basin to the east and the Sabrina Subglacial Basin to the west. This finding augments recent interpretations of aeromagnetic and airborne gravity data over the region, suggesting that the Mawson Continent is a composite lithospheric-scale entity, which was affected by several Paleoproterozoic and Mesoproterozoic orogenic events. Thick crust is imaged beneath the Transantarctic Mountains, the Terre Adelie Craton, the Gamburtsev Subglacial Mountains and also Eastern Dronning Maud Land, in particular beneath the recently proposed region of the Tonian Oceanic Arc Superterrane. The GIA and GIU components help delineate the edges of several of these lithospheric provinces. One of the most prominent lithospheric-scale features discovered in East Antarctica from satellite gravity gradient imaging is the Trans East Antarctic Shear Zone that separates the Gamburtsev Province from the Eastern Dronning Maud Land Province and appears to form the

  2. Seismic and Thermal Structure of the Arctic Lithosphere, From Waveform Tomography and Thermodynamic Modelling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lebedev, S.; Schaeffer, A. J.; Fullea, J.; Pease, V.

    2015-12-01

    Thermal structure of the lithosphere is reflected in the values of seismic velocities within it. Our new tomographic models of the crust and upper mantle of the Arctic are constrained by an unprecedentedly large global waveform dataset and provide substantially improved resolution, compared to previous models. The new tomography reveals lateral variations in the temperature and thickness of the lithosphere and defines deep boundaries between tectonic blocks with different lithospheric properties and age. The shape and evolution of the geotherm beneath a tectonic unit depends on both crustal and mantle-lithosphere structure beneath it: the lithospheric thickness and its changes with time (these determine the supply of heat from the deep Earth), the crustal thickness and heat production (the supply of heat from within the crust), and the thickness and thermal conductivity of the sedimentary cover (the insulation). Detailed thermal structure of the basins can be modelled by combining seismic velocities from tomography with data on the crustal structure and heat production, in the framework of computational petrological modelling. The most prominent lateral contrasts across the Arctic are between the cold, thick lithospheres of the cratons (in North America, Greenland and Eurasia) and the warmer, non-cratonic blocks. The lithosphere of the Canada Basin is cold and thick, similar to old oceanic lithosphere elsewhere around the world; its thermal structure offers evidence on its lithospheric age and formation mechanism. At 150-250 km depth, the central Arctic region shows a moderate low-velocity anomaly, cooler than that beneath Iceland and N Atlantic. An extension of N Atlantic low-velocity anomaly into the Arctic through the Fram Strait may indicate an influx of N Atlantic asthenosphere under the currently opening Eurasia Basin.

  3. Contrast of lithospheric dynamics across the southern and eastern margins of the Tibetan Plateau: a numerical study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Yujun; Fan, Taoyuan; Wu, Zhonghai

    2018-05-01

    Both of the southern and eastern margins of the Tibetan Plateau are bounded by the cratonic blocks (Indian plate and Sichuan basin). However, there are many differences in tectonic deformation, lithospheric structure and surface heat flow between these two margins. What dynamics cause these differences? With the constraints of the lithospheric structure and surface heat flow across the southern and eastern margins of Tibetan Plateau, we constructed 2-D thermal-mechanical finite-element models to investigate the dynamics across these two margins. The results show that the delamination of mantle lithosphere beneath the Lhasa terrane in Oligocene and the rheological contrast between the Indian and Tibetan crust are the two main factors that control the subduction of the Indian plate. The dynamics across the eastern margin of the Tibetan Plateau are different from the southern margin. During the lateral expansion of the Tibetan Plateau, pure shear thickening is the main deformation characteristic for the Songpan-Ganzi lithosphere. This thickening results in the reduction of geothermal gradient and surface heat flow. From this study, it can be seen that the delamination of the mantle lithosphere and the rheological contrast between the Tibetan Plateau and its bounding blocks are the two main factors that control the lithospheric deformation and surface heat flow.

  4. Comprehensive analysis of Curie-point depths and lithospheric effective elastic thickness at Arctic Region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Y.; Li, C. F.

    2017-12-01

    Arctic Ocean remains at the forefront of geological exploration. Here we investigate its deep geological structures and geodynamics on the basis of gravity, magnetic and bathymetric data. We estimate Curie-point depth and lithospheric effective elastic thickness to understand deep geothermal structures and Arctic lithospheric evolution. A fractal exponent of 3.0 for the 3D magnetization model is used in the Curie-point depth inversion. The result shows that Curie-point depths are between 5 and 50 km. Curie depths are mostly small near the active mid-ocean ridges, corresponding well to high heat flow and active shallow volcanism. Large curie depths are distributed mainly at continental marginal seas around the Arctic Ocean. We present a map of effective elastic thickness (Te) of the lithosphere using a multitaper coherence technique, and Te are between 5 and 110 km. Te primarily depends on geothermal gradient and composition, as well as structures in the lithosphere. We find that Te and Curie-point depths are often correlated. Large Te are distributed mainly at continental region and small Te are distributed at oceanic region. The Alpha-Mendeleyev Ridge (AMR) and The Svalbard Archipelago (SA) are symmetrical with the mid-ocean ridge. AMR and SA were formed before an early stage of Eurasian basin spreading, and they are considered as conjugate large igneous provinces, which show small Te and Curie-point depths. Novaya Zemlya region has large Curie-point depths and small Te. We consider that fault and fracture near the Novaya Zemlya orogenic belt cause small Te. A series of transform faults connect Arctic mid-ocean ridge with North Atlantic mid-ocean ridge. We can see large Te near transform faults, but small Curie-point depths. We consider that although temperature near transform faults is high, but mechanically the lithosphere near transform faults are strengthened.

  5. Dependence of Subduction Zone seismicity on Strain-Rate-Dependent Critical Homologous Temperature

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, P. M.

    2016-12-01

    Earthquakes mainly occur in crust or mantle that is below a critical temperature for the tectonic strain-rate, such that stress builds up to the breaking point before it can relax due to creep. Then long-range stress correlation gives rise to power law seismicity with large events. The limiting temperature depends on pressure, which is taken into account by finding a critical homologous temperature THc=T/TM above which earthquakes are rarely observed. We find that THc for ocean plates is ˜0.55. For California earthquakes, it is also close to 0.55. The uppermost mantle layer of oceanic plates of thickness ˜50 km is composed of harzburgite and depleted peridotite from which basalt has been removed to form ocean crust. Thus it has a higher melting temperature than the peridotite of the surrounding mantle, or the lower halves of plates. Thicknesses of seismicity in deep subduction zones, determined from 2D polynomial fits to a relocated catalog, are ˜50 km, which suggests that the earthquake channel is confined to this layer. We construct models to find homologous temperatures in slabs, and find that seismicity thicknesses are also, on average, confined to TH ≤ 0.55 ± 0.05. The associated rheology is compared with that obtained from flexure models of ocean lithosphere. The brittle-ductile transition occurs where viscosity drops from high values in the cold cores of slabs to values of 1022 to $1023 Pa s, i.e., where creep strain-rates become comparable to tectonic rates. The cutoff for deep earthquakes is not sharp. However they appear unlikely to occur if homologous temperature is high TH>0.55. Exceptions to the rule are anomalously deep earthquakes such as those beneath the Iceland and the Hawaiian hotspots, and the Newport Inglewood Fault. These are smaller events with short-range stress correlation, and can be explained if strain-rates are 2 to 3 orders of magnitude higher than those associated with earthquakes located where TH ≤0.55. We conclude that the

  6. Topographic and sedimentary features in the Yap subduction zone and their implications for the Caroline Ridge subduction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dong, Dongdong; Zhang, Zhengyi; Bai, Yongliang; Fan, Jianke; Zhang, Guangxu

    2018-01-01

    The Yap subduction zone in the western Pacific presents some unique features compared to normal intra-oceanic subduction zones such as the subduction of an oceanic plateau. However, due to the relative paucity of geophysical data, the detailed structure remains unknown in this area. In this study, we present the latest high-quality swath bathymetry and multi-channel seismic data acquired synchronously in 2015 across the Yap subduction zone. The topographic and sedimentary features are intensively investigated and a modified evolutionary model of the Yap subduction zone is proposed. The two-stage evolution of the Parece Vela Basin (PVB) produced fabrics that are N-S trending and NW-SE trending. Our seismic data clearly reveal landslide deposits at the upper slope break of the forearc, to the north of the Yap Island, which was identified as the fault notch denoting a lithological boundary in previous work. The swath bathymetry and seismic profile reveal detailed horst and graben structures, including a crescent-shaped fault zone near the contact between the Yap Trench and the Caroline Ridge. A simple geometric model is proposed to explain the structure formation, indicating that the higher topography of the Caroline Ridge resulted in enhanced bending-related extension. A seismic angular unconformity (named R1) is identified in the Sorol Trough, marking the onset of rifting in the trough. Based on the sequence thickness and deposition rate by Deep Sea Drilling Project (DSDP), it is deduced that the Sorol Trough formed at 10 Ma or even earlier. A modified model for the Yap subduction zone evolution is proposed, incorporating three major tectonic events: the proto-Yap Arc rupture in the Oligocene, the collision of the Caroline Ridge and the Yap Trench in the late Oligocene or middle Miocene, and the onset of the Sorol Trough rifting in the late Miocene.

  7. THE POTENTIAL OF TSUNAMI GENERATION ALONG THE MAKRAN SUBDUCTION ZONE IN THE NORTHERN ARABIAN SEA. CASE STUDY: THE EARTHQUAKE AND TSUNAMI OF NOVEMBER 28, 1945

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    George Pararas-Carayannis

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Although large earthquakes along the Makran Subduction Zone are infrequent, the potential for the generation of destructive tsunamis in the Northern Arabian Sea cannot be overlooked. It is quite possible that historical tsunamis in this region have not been properly reported or documented. Such past tsunamis must have affected Southern Pakistan, India, Iran, Oman, the Maldives and other countries bordering the Indian Ocean.The best known of the historical tsunamis in the region is the one generated by the great earthquake of November 28, 1945 off Pakistan's Makran Coast (Balochistan in the Northern Arabian Sea. The destructive tsunami killed more than 4,000 people in Southern Pakistan but also caused great loss of life and devastation along the coasts of Western India, Iran, Oman and possibly elsewhere.The seismotectonics of the Makran subduction zone, historical earthquakes in the region, the recent earthquake of October 8, 2005 in Northern Pakistan, and the great tsunamigenic earthquakes of December 26, 2004 and March 28, 2005, are indicative of the active tectonic collision process that is taking place along the entire southern and southeastern boundary of the Eurasian plate as it collides with the Indian plate and adjacent microplates. Tectonic stress transference to other, stress loaded tectonic regions could trigger tsunamigenic earthquakes in the Northern Arabian Sea in the future.The northward movement and subduction of the Oman oceanic lithosphere beneath the Iranian micro-plate at a very shallow angle and at the high rate is responsible for active orogenesis and uplift that has created a belt of highly folded and densely faulted coastal mountain ridges along the coastal region of Makran, in both the Balochistan and Sindh provinces. The same tectonic collision process has created offshore thrust faults. As in the past, large destructive tsunamigenic earthquakes can occur along major faults in the east Makran region, near Karachi, as

  8. The Fairway-Aotea Basin and the New Caledonia Trough, witnesses of the Pacific-Australian plate boundary evolution : from mid-Cretaceous cessation of subduction to Eocene subduction renewal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collot, J.; Geli, L. B.; Lafoy, Y.; Sutherland, R.; Herzer, R. H.; Roest, W. R.

    2009-12-01

    The geodynamical history of the SW Pacific is controlled since the Mesozoic by the evolution of peri-Pacific subduction zones, in a trench retreat by slab roll-back process, which successively occurred along the Eastern Gondwana margin. In this context, most basins which formed after 45 Ma reached a stage of seafloor spreading, have recorded the inversions of the earth's magnetic field and present typical oceanic crust morphologies. By contrast, the New Caledonia and Fairway basins, which are narrower and present thick sedimentary covers have a less known and more controversial origin. Based on a regional geological synthesis and on interpretation of multichannel seismic reflection and refraction data, combined with drill hole data off New Zealand and a compilation of regional potential data, we distinguish 2 phases of the evolution of the Fairway-Aotea Basin (FAB) and the New Caledonia Trough (NCT), which reflect the evolution of the Gondwana-Pacific plate boundary: Phase 1: Mid Cretaceous formation of the FAB in a continental intra- or back- arc position of the Pacific-Gondwana subduction system. The formation of this shallow basin reflects the onset of continental breakup of the Eastern Gondwana margin during Cenomanian which was most probably caused by a dynamic change of the subduction zone through a « verticalization » of the slab. This event may be the result of the 99 Ma kinematic plate reorganization which probably led to subduction cessation along the Gondwana-Pacific plate boundary. A tectonic escape mechanism, in relation with the locking of the subduction zone by the Hikurangi Plateau, could also be responsible of the trench retreat leading to backarc extension. Phase 2: Regional Eocene-Oligocene uplift followed by rapid subsidence (3-4 km) of the system « Lord Howe Rise - FAB - Norfolk Ridge ». The structural style of this deformation leads us to suggest that detachment of the lower crust is the cause of subsidence. We therefore propose a model in

  9. Tracing halogen and B cycling in subduction zones based on obducted, subducted and forearc serpentinites of the Dominican Republic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pagé, Lilianne; Hattori, Keiko

    2017-12-19

    Serpentinites are important reservoirs of fluid-mobile elements in subduction zones, contributing to volatiles in arc magmas and their transport into the Earth's mantle. This paper reports halogen (F, Cl, Br, I) and B abundances of serpentinites from the Dominican Republic, including obducted and subducted abyssal serpentinites and forearc mantle serpentinites. Abyssal serpentinite compositions indicate the incorporation of these elements from seawater and sediments during serpentinization on the seafloor and at slab bending. During their subduction and subsequent lizardite-antigorite transition, F and B are retained in serpentinites, whilst Cl, Br and I are expelled. Forearc mantle serpentinite compositions suggest their hydration by fluids released from subducting altered oceanic crust and abyssal serpentinites, with only minor sediment contribution. This finding is consistent with the minimal subduction of sediments in the Dominican Republic. Forearc mantle serpentinites have F/Cl and B/Cl ratios similar to arc magmas, suggesting the importance of serpentinite dehydration in the generation of arc magmatism in the mantle wedge.

  10. Subduction initiation and recycling of Alboran domain derived crustal components prior to the intra-crustal emplacement of mantle peridotites in the Westernmost Mediterranean: isotopic evidence from the Ronda peridotite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varas-Reus, María Isabel; Garrido, Carlos J.; Bosch, Delphine; Marchesi, Claudio Claudio; Acosta-Vigil, Antonio; Hidas, Károly; Barich, Amel

    2014-05-01

    During Late Oligocene-Early Miocene different domains formed in the region between Iberia and Africa in the westernmost Mediterranean, including thinned continental crust and a Flysch Trough turbiditic deposits likely floored by oceanic crust [1]. At this time, the Ronda peridotite likely constituted the subcontinental lithospheric mantle of the Alboran domain, which mantle lithosphere was undergoing strong thinning and melting [2] [3] coevally with Early Miocene extension in the overlying Alpujárride-Maláguide stacked crust [4, 5]. Intrusive Cr- rich pyroxenites in the Ronda massif records the geochemical processes occurring in the subcontinental mantle of the Alboran domain during the Late Oligocene [6]. Recent isotopic studies of these pyroxenites indicate that their mantle source was contaminated by a subduction component released by detrital crustal sediments [6]. This new data is consistent with a subduction setting for the late evolution of the Alboran lithospheric mantle just prior to its final intracrustal emplacement in the early Miocene Further detailed structural studies of the Ronda plagioclase peridotites-related to the initial stages of ductile emplacement of the peridotite-have led to Hidas et al. [7] to propose a geodynamic model where folding and shearing of an attenuated mantle lithosphere occurred by backarc basin inversion followed by failed subduction initiation that ended into the intracrustal emplacement of peridotite into the Alboran wedge in the earliest Miocene. This hypothesis implies that the crustal component recorded in late, Cr-rich websterite dykes might come from underthrusted crustal rocks from the Flysch and/or Alpujárrides units that might have been involved in the earliest stages of this subduction initiation stage. To investigate the origin of crustal component in the mantle source of this late magmatic event recorded by Cr-pyroxenites, we have carried out a detail Sr-Nd-Pb-Hf isotopic study of a variety of Betic

  11. Thermal effects of variable material properties and metamorphic reactions in a three-component subducting slab

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chemia, Zurab; Dolejš, David; Steinle-Neumann, Gerd

    2015-01-01

    We explore the effects of variable material properties, phase transformations, and metamorphic devolatilization reactions on the thermal structure of a subducting slab using thermodynamic phase equilibrium calculations combined with a thermal evolution model. The subducting slab is divided...... into three layers consisting of oceanic sediments, altered oceanic crust, and partially serpentinized or anhydrous harzburgite. Solid-fluid equilibria and material properties are computed for each layer individually to illustrate distinct thermal consequences when chemical and mechanical homogenization...... indicate that subducting sediments and oceanic crust warm by 40 and 70°C, respectively, before the effect of wedge convection and heating is encountered at 1.7 GPa. Retention of fluid in the slab pore space plays a negligible role in oceanic crust and serpentinized peridotites. By contrast, the large...

  12. Carbonatitic liquids and COH fluids from epidote-dolomite eclogites at 3.7 - 4.6 GPa: new perspectives on carbon transfer at subduction zones

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poli, S.

    2013-12-01

    Current knowledge on the solidus temperature for carbonate-bearing rocks suggests that carbonatitic liquids should not form in a subducted oceanic lithosphere, unless anomalous thermal relaxation occurs. For a mildly warm subduction path, COH-bearing basaltic eclogites are expected to loose all H2O component at epidote breakdown, located at approx. 2.8-3.0 GPa. Above this pressure limit, the solidus is that of a carbonated basaltic eclogite which shows a minimum temperature of 1020 °C at 4.0-4.5 GPa (Dasgupta et al. 2004). However, the oceanic crust includes a range of gabbroic rocks, altered on rifts and transforms, with large amounts of An-rich plagioclase. It has been shown that epidote disappearance with pressure depend on the normative anorthite content of the bulk composition considered (Poli et al. 2009); we therefore expect that altered gabbros might display a much wider pressure range where epidote persists, potentially affecting the solidus relationships. Notably, this applies to epidosite rocks formed in hydrothermal environments at oceanic settings, then recovered in high-pressure and ultra-high pressure terrains. New experimental data from 3.7 to 4.6 GPa, 750°C to 1000 °C are intended to unravel the effect of variable bulk and volatile compositions in model eclogites, enriched in the normative anorthite component (An37 and An45). Experiments are performed in piston cylinder and multianvil machines apparatus, using both single and, buffered, double capsule techniques. Garnet, clinopyroxene and coesite form in all syntheses. Lawsonite was found to persist at 3.7 GPa, 750 °C, with both dolomite and magnesite; at 3.8 GPa, 775-800 °C, fluid saturated conditions, epidote coexists with kyanite, dolomite and magnesite. The anhydrous assemblage garnet, omphacite, aragonite, kyanite is found at 4.2 GPa, 850 °C. At 900 °C, fluid-rich conditions, a silicate fluid/melt of granitoid composition, a carbonatitic melt and Na-carbonate are observed. Close to

  13. Thermal Structure of the Cascadia Subduction Zone on the Washington Margin (AT26-04, EM122)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — We propose to conduct a comprehensive study of the thermal environment of the Cascadia Subduction Zone (CSZ) within the NSF GeoPRISM Corridor off the Washington...

  14. Lithosphere structure and upper mantle characteristics below the Bay of Bengal

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Rao, G.S.; Radhakrishna, M.; Sreejith, K.M.; Krishna, K.S.; Bull, J.M.

    The oceanic lithosphere in the Bay of Bengal (BOB) formed 80-120 Ma following the breakup of eastern Gondwanaland. Since its formation, it has been affected by the emplacement of two long N-S trending linear aseismic ridges (85°E and Ninetyeast...

  15. Can We Probe the Conductivity of the Lithosphere and Upper Mantle Using Satellite Tidal Magnetic Signals?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schnepf, N. R.; Kuvshinov, A.; Sabaka, T.

    2015-01-01

    A few studies convincingly demonstrated that the magnetic fields induced by the lunar semidiurnal (M2) ocean flow can be identified in satellite observations. This result encourages using M2 satellite magnetic data to constrain subsurface electrical conductivity in oceanic regions. Traditional satellite-based induction studies using signals of magnetospheric origin are mostly sensitive to conducting structures because of the inductive coupling between primary and induced sources. In contrast, galvanic coupling from the oceanic tidal signal allows for studying less conductive, shallower structures. We perform global 3-D electromagnetic numerical simulations to investigate the sensitivity of M2 signals to conductivity distributions at different depths. The results of our sensitivity analysis suggest it will be promising to use M2 oceanic signals detected at satellite altitude for probing lithospheric and upper mantle conductivity. Our simulations also suggest that M2 seafloor electric and magnetic field data may provide complementary details to better constrain lithospheric conductivity.

  16. Barium isotope geochemistry of subduction-zone magmas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, H.; Nan, X.; Huang, J.; Wörner, G.; Huang, F.

    2017-12-01

    Subduction zones are crucial tectonic setting to study material exchange between crust and mantle, mantle partial melting with fluid addition, and formation of ore-deposits1-3. The geochemical characteristics of arc lavas from subduction zones are different from magmas erupted at mid-ocean ridges4, because there are addition of fluids/melts from subducted AOC and its overlying sediments into their source regions in the sub-arc mantle4. Ba is highly incompatible during mantle melting5, and it is enriched in crust (456 ppm)6 relative to the mantle (7.0 ppm)7. The subducted sediments are also enriched in Ba (776 ppm of GLOSS)8. Moreover, because Ba is fluid soluble during subduction, it has been used to track contributions of subduction-related fluids to arc magmas9 or recycled sediments to the mantle10-11. To study the Ba isotope fractionation behavior during subduction process, we analyzed well-characterized, chemically-diverse arc lavas from Central American, Kamchatka, Central-Eastern Aleutian, and Southern Lesser Antilles. The δ137/134Ba of Central American arc lavas range from -0.13 to 0.24‰, and have larger variation than the arc samples from other locations. Except one sample from Central-Eastern Aleutian arc with obviously heavy δ137/134Ba values (0.27‰), all other samples from Kamchatka, Central-Eastern Aleutian, Southern Lesser Antilles arcs are within the range of OIB. The δ137/134Ba is not correlated with the distance to trench, partial melting degrees (Mg#), or subducting slab-derived components. The samples enriched with heavy Ba isotopes have low Ba contents, indicating that Ba isotopes can be fractionated at the beginning of dehydration process with small amount of Ba releasing to the mantle wedge. With the dehydration degree increasing, more Ba of the subducted slab can be added to the source of arc lavas, likely homogenizing the Ba isotope signatures. 1. Rudnick, R., 1995 Nature; 2. Tatsumi, Y. & Kogiso, T., 2003; 3. Sun, W., et al., 2015 Ore

  17. Sr-Pb-Nd isotopic evidence that both MORB and OIB sources contribute to oceanic island arc magmas in Fiji

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gill, J.B.

    1984-01-01

    Twenty-eight new Pb, 20 Sr, and 9 Nd isotopic compositions are presented for 32 rocks and one galena from Fiji and the South Fiji (back-arc) Basin. The Fijian rocks range in age from 35 to 143 Nd/ 144 Nd and low 206 Pb/ 204 Pb). Nearly constant 207 Pb/ 204 Pb, and an OIB source component lying within the conventional Sr-Nd-Pb mantle array. In later calc-alkaline and shoshonitic series rocks, these same trace element and isotopic ratios are more like those of OIB. The change was not accompanied by an increase in 207 Pb/ 204 Pb or Cs/K, indeed, 207 Pb/ 204 Pb is closer to the mantle array in these later series. Consequently, the change indicates a greater contribution from OIB sources, rather than from recycled ocean crust. These interpretations require that both MORB and OIB sources coexist in the uppermost mantle above subducted lithosphere. (orig./WB)

  18. Anomalously high porosity in subduction inputs to the Nankai Trough (SW Japan) potentially caused by volcanic ash and pumice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huepers, A.; Ikari, M.; Underwood, M.; Kopf, A.

    2013-12-01

    At convergent margins, the sedimentary section seaward of the trench on the subducting oceanic lithosphere provides the source material for accretionary prisms and eventually becomes the host rock of the plate boundary megathrust. The mechanical properties of the sediments seaward of the subduction zone have therefore a first order control on subduction zone forearc mechanics and hydrogeology. At the Nankai Trough (SW Japan) the majority of sediment approaching the subduction zone is clay-rich. Scientific drilling expeditions in the framework of the Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) and the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP) have revealed an anomalous zone of high porosity in a major lithologic unit known as the Upper Shikoku Basin facies (USB), which is associated with elevated volcanic ash content and high amounts of silica in the interstitial water. The existence of the high porosity zone has previously been associated with advanced silica cementation, driven by the dual diagenetic transition of opal-A to opal-CT, and opal-CT to quartz. However, temperature estimates from recent drilling expeditions offshore the Kii peninsula reveal different in situ temperatures at the proposed diagenetic boundary in the Shikoku Basin. Furthermore, laboratory measurements using core samples from the USB show that cohesive strength is not elevated in the high porosity zone, suggesting that a process other than cementation may be responsible. The USB sediment is characterized by abundant volcanic ash and pumice, therefore the high porosity zone in the USB may be closely linked to the mechanical behavior of this phase. We conducted consolidation tests in the range 0.1 to 8 MPa effective vertical stress on artificial ash-smectite and pumice-smectite mixtures, as well as intact and remolded natural samples from the IODP Sites C0011 and C0012 to investigate the role of the volcanic constituent on porosity loss with progressive burial. Our results show that both remolded and intact

  19. Seismic investigations of the Earth's lithosphere and asthenosphere in two unique convergent margin settings: The Carpathians, Romania, and U.S. Cordillera, Idaho-Oregon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stanciu, Adrian Christian

    Proposed mechanisms for the unusual seismicity ~100 km southeast of the contact between the Transylvanian Basin and the Eastern Carpathians in Romania have included tearing and rollback of a subducted slab of oceanic lithosphere and gravitational instability and delamination of continental lithosphere. We examined the upper mantle fabrics using shear wave splitting of SK(K)S phases recorded at four broadband seismic stations in the Transylvanian Basin. Our results indicate a regional NW-SE splitting trend, with measurements that reflect an abrupt change from this regional flow field in the vicinity of the Vrancea body to a NE-SW trend that is consistent with redirection of mantle flow. Crustal thickness measurements show 28-30 km in the western part of the Transylvanian Basin, 34-39 km at the contact with the Eastern Carpathians, and 40-45 km further east. These results, along with previous estimates, constrain the locus of the inferred Miocene suture between the southeastern-most portion of the Tisza-Dacia terrane and the East European Platform. The second convergent margin system represented here is in the North American Cordillera in Idaho and Oregon, where subduction and accretion of exotic terranes have modified the western margin of North America. We used teleseismic receiver functions from 85 broadband stations to analyze the geometry of the Salmon River suture zone, the western Idaho shear zone, and the Grouse Creek-Farmington zone boundary. Results show a clear break in crustal thickness from ~28 km beneath the accreted terranes to 36 km east of the surface expression of the WISZ. A strong mid-crustal converter at ~20 km depth is consistent with tectonic wedging during accretion of the Blue Mountains terranes. An eastern Moho offset of ~6 km is consistent with the Archean Grouse Creek-Farmington zone boundary. We used deep converted phases generated beneath the study area to image the mantle transition zone. We observe a continuous high amplitude P410s

  20. Subduction factory 1. Theoretical mineralogy, densities, seismic wave speeds, and H2O contents

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hacker, Bradley R.; Abers, Geoffrey A.; Peacock, Simon M.

    2003-01-01

    We present a new compilation of physical properties of minerals relevant to subduction zones and new phase diagrams for mid-ocean ridge basalt, lherzolite, depleted lherzolite, harzburgite, and serpentinite. We use these data to calculate H2O content, density and seismic wave speeds of subduction zone rocks. These calculations provide a new basis for evaluating the subduction factory, including (1) the presence of hydrous phases and the distribution of H2O within a subduction zone; (2) the densification of the subducting slab and resultant effects on measured gravity and slab shape; and (3) the variations in seismic wave speeds resulting from thermal and metamorphic processes at depth. In considering specific examples, we find that for ocean basins worldwide the lower oceanic crust is partially hydrated (measurements. Subducted hydrous crust in cold slabs can persist to several gigapascals at seismic velocities that are several percent slower than the surrounding mantle. Seismic velocities and VP/VS ratios indicate that mantle wedges locally reach 60-80% hydration.

  1. Integrating surface and mantle constraints for palaeo-ocean evolution: a tour of the Arctic and adjacent regions (Arne Richter Award for Outstanding Young Scientists Lecture)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shephard, Grace E.

    2016-04-01

    Plate tectonic reconstructions heavily rely on absolute motions derived from hotspot trails or palaeomagnetic data and ocean-floor magnetic anomaies and fracture-zone geometries to constrain the detailed history of ocean basins. However, as oceanic lithosphere is progressively recycled into the mantle, kinematic data regarding the history of these now extinct-oceans is lost. In order to better understand their evolution, novel workflows, which integrate a wide range of complementary yet independent geological and geophysical datasets from both the surface and deep mantle, must be utilised. In particular, the emergence of time-dependent, semi or self-consistent geodynamic models of ever-increasing temporal and spatial resolution are revealing some critical constraints on the evolution and fate of oceanic slabs. The tectonic evolution of the circum-Arctic is no exception; since the breakup of Pangea, this enigmatic region has seen major plate reorganizations and the opening and closure of several ocean basins. At the surface, a myriad of potential kinematic scenarios including polarity, timing, geometry and location of subduction have emerged, including for systems along continental margins and intra-oceanic settings. Furthermore, recent work has reignited a debate about the origins of 'anchor' slabs, such as the Farallon and Mongol-Okhotsk slabs, which have been used to refine absolute plate motions. Moving to the mantle, seismic tomography models reveal a region peppered with inferred slabs, however assumptions about their affinities and subduction location, timing, geometry and polarity are often made in isolation. Here, by integrating regional plate reconstructions with insights from seismic tomography, satellite derived gravity gradients, slab sinking rates and geochemistry, I explore some Mesozoic examples from the palaeo-Arctic, northern Panthalassa and western margin of North America, including evidence for a discrete and previously undescribed slab under

  2. Sub-Moho Reflectors, Mantle Faults and Lithospheric Rheology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, L. D.

    2013-12-01

    One of the most unexpected and dramatic observations from the early years of deep reflection profiling of the continents using multichannel CMP techniques was the existing of prominent reflections from the upper mantle. The first of these, the Flannan thrust/fault/feature, was traced by marine profiling of the continental margin offshore Britain by the BIRPS program, which soon found them to be but one of several clear sub-crustal discontinuities in that area. Subsequently, similar mantle reflectors have been observed in many areas around the world, most commonly beneath Precambrian cratonic areas. Many, but not all, of these mantle reflections appear to arise from near the overlying Moho or within the lower crust before dipping well into the mantle. Others occur as subhorizontal events at various depths with the mantle, with one suite seeming to cluster at a depth of about 75 km. The dipping events have been variously interpreted as mantle roots of crustal normal faults or the deep extension of crustal thrust faults. The most common interpretation, however, is that these dipping events are the relicts of ancient subduction zones, the stumps of now detached Benioff zones long since reclaimed by the deeper mantle. In addition to the BIRPS reflectors, the best known examples include those beneath Fennoscandia in northern Europe, the Abitibi-Grenville of eastern Canada, and the Slave Province of northwestern Canada (e.g. on the SNORCLE profile). The most recently reported example is from beneath the Sichuan Basin of central China. The preservation of these coherent, and relatively delicate appearing, features beneath older continental crust and presumably within equally old (of not older) mantle lithosphere, has profound implications for the history and rheology of the lithosphere in these areas. If they represent, as widely believe, some form of faulting with the lithosphere, they provide corollary constraints on the nature of faulting in both the lower crust and

  3. Rifting Thick Lithosphere - Canning Basin, Western Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Czarnota, Karol; White, Nicky

    2016-04-01

    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 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. The discrepancy between estimates of lithospheric thickness derived from subsidence data for the western Canning Basin and those derived from shear wave tomography suggests that the latter technique currently is limited in its ability to resolve lithospheric thickness variations at horizontal half-wavelength scales of <300 km.

  4. Interaction Between Downwelling Flow and the Laterally-Varying Thickness of the North American Lithosphere Inferred from Seismic Anisotropy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Behn, M. D.; Conrad, C. P.; Silver, P. G.

    2005-12-01

    Shear flow in the asthenosphere tends to align olivine crystals in the direction of shear, producing a seismically anisotropic asthenosphere that can be detected using a number of seismic techniques (e.g., shear-wave splitting (SWS) and surface waves). In the ocean basins, where the asthenosphere has a relatively uniform thickness and lithospheric anisotropy appears to be small, observed azimuthal anisotropy is well fit by asthenospheric shear flow in global flow models driven by a combination of plate motions and mantle density heterogeneity. In contrast, beneath the continents both the lithospheric ceiling and asthenospheric thickness may vary considerably across cratonic regions and ocean-continent boundaries. To examine the influence of a continental lithosphere with variable thickness on predictions of continental seismic anisotropy, we impose lateral variations in lithospheric viscosity in global models of mantle flow driven by plate motions and mantle density heterogeneity. For the North American continent, the Farallon slab descends beneath a deep cratonic root, producing downwelling flow in the upper mantle and convergent flow beneath the cratonic lithosphere. We evaluate both the orientation of the predicted azimuthal anisotropy and the depth dependence of radial anisotropy for this downwelling flow and find that the inclusion of a strong continental root provides an improved fit to observed SWS observations beneath the North American craton. Thus, we hypothesize that at least some continental anisotropy is associated with sub-lithospheric viscous shear, although fossil anisotropy in the lithospheric layer may also contribute significantly. Although we do not observe significant variations in the direction of predicted anisotropy with depth, we do find that the inclusion of deep continental roots pushes the depth of the anisotropy layer deeper into the upper mantle. We test several different models of laterally-varying lithosphere and asthenosphere

  5. Using crustal thickness and subsidence history on the Iberia-Newfoundland margins to constrain lithosphere deformation modes during continental breakup

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeanniot, Ludovic; Kusznir, Nick; Manatschal, Gianreto; Mohn, Geoffroy

    2014-05-01

    Observations at magma-poor rifted margins such as Iberia-Newfoundland show a complex lithosphere deformation history during continental breakup and seafloor spreading initiation leading to complex OCT architecture with hyper-extended continental crust and lithosphere, exhumed mantle and scattered embryonic oceanic crust and continental slivers. Initiation of seafloor spreading requires both the rupture of the continental crust and lithospheric mantle, and the onset of decompressional melting. Their relative timing controls when mantle exhumation may occur; the presence or absence of exhumed mantle provides useful information on the timing of these events and constraints on lithosphere deformation modes. A single lithosphere deformation mode leading to continental breakup and sea-floor spreading cannot explain observations. We have determined the sequence of lithosphere deformation events for two profiles across the present-day conjugate Iberia-Newfoundland margins, using forward modelling of continental breakup and seafloor spreading initiation calibrated against observations of crustal basement thickness and subsidence. Flow fields, representing a sequence of lithosphere deformation modes, are generated by a 2D finite element viscous flow model (FeMargin), and used to advect lithosphere and asthenosphere temperature and material. FeMargin is kinematically driven by divergent deformation in the upper 15-20 km of the lithosphere inducing passive upwelling beneath that layer; extensional faulting and magmatic intrusions deform the topmost upper lithosphere, consistent with observations of deformation processes occurring at slow spreading ocean ridges (Cannat, 1996). Buoyancy enhanced upwelling, as predicted by Braun et al. (2000) is also kinematically included in the lithosphere deformation model. Melt generation by decompressional melting is predicted using the parameterization and methodology of Katz et al. (2003). The distribution of lithosphere deformation, the

  6. Mapping lithosphere thickness beneath the Southern Caribbean and Venezuela using body wave reflectivity and surface wave tomography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masy, J.; Niu, F.; Levander, A.; Schmitz, M.

    2012-12-01

    lateral resolution (Yang and Forsyth, 2006). The phase velocities were inverted for 1D shear velocity structure on a 0.5 by 0.5 degree grid. Crustal thickness for the starting models was previously determined from BOLIVAR and other wide-angle seismic experiments and receiver function analysis (Schmitz et al., 2001; Niu et al., 2007; Bezada et al., 2007; Clark et al., 2008; Guedez, 2008; Magnani et al., 2009; Bezada et al., 2010a). The resulting 3D shear velocity model was then used to determine the depth of the LAB in conjunction with Ps and Sp receiver functions. LAB depth is approximately 120-140 km beneath the Archean-Proterozoic Guayana Shield, in reasonable agreement with body wave tomography. The lithosphere thins to the west beneath the Barinas Apure Basin to about 90 km, and to the north beneath the Sierra del Interior to 80 to 90 km. Offshore beneath the Cariaco basin the LAB is ~60 km. At depths up to 200 km beneath the Peninsula the Paria, there are high velocities interepreted as the subducting oceanic part of the South American Plate, a result that is consistent with finite-frequency P wave tomography (Bezada et al., 2010b).

  7. Dry Juan de Fuca slab revealed by quantification of water entering Cascadia subduction zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canales, J. P.; Carbotte, S. M.; Nedimovic, M. R.; Carton, H. D.

    2017-12-01

    Water is carried by subducting slabs as a pore fluid and in structurally bound minerals, yet no comprehensive quantification of water content and how it is stored and distributed at depth within incoming plates exists for any segment of the global subduction system. Here we use controlled-source seismic data collected in 2012 as part of the Ridge-to-Trench seismic experiment to quantify the amount of pore and structurally bound water in the Juan de Fuca plate entering the Cascadia subduction zone. We use wide-angle OBS seismic data along a 400-km-long margin-parallel profile 10-15 km seaward from the Cascadia deformation front to obtain P-wave tomography models of the sediments, crust, and uppermost mantle, and effective medium theory combined with a stochastic description of crustal properties (e.g., temperature, alteration assemblages, porosity, pore aspect ratio), to analyze the pore fluid and structurally bound water reservoirs in the sediments, crust and lithospheric mantle, and their variations along the Cascadia margin. Our results demonstrate that the Juan de Fuca lower crust and mantle are much drier than at any other subducting plate, with most of the water stored in the sediments and upper crust. Previously documented, variable but limited bend faulting along the margin, which correlates with degree of plate locking, limits slab access to water, and a warm thermal structure resulting from a thick sediment cover and young plate age prevents significant serpentinization of the mantle. Our results have important implications for a number of subduction processes at Cascadia, such as: (1) the dryness of the lower crust and mantle indicates that fluids that facilitate episodic tremor and slip must be sourced from the subducted upper crust; (2) decompression rather than hydrous melting must dominate arc magmatism in northern-central Cascadia; and (3) dry subducted lower crust and mantle can explain the low levels of intermediate-depth seismicity in the Juan de

  8. Segmented Subduction Across the Juan De Fuca Plate: Challenges in Imaging with an Amphibious Array

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-12-01

    The Cascadia Initiative (CI) is an amphibious array spanning the Juan de Fuca plate from formation at the ridge to the destruction of the slab in the mantle beneath western North America. This ambitions project has occupied over 300 onshore and offshore sites, providing an unprecedented opportunity to understand the dynamics of oceanic plates. The CI project is now in its fourth and final year of deployment. Here we present constraints on the structure of the Juan de Fuca plate and its interaction with western North America. We identify segmentation along the Cascadia subduction zone that can be traced back onto the Juan de Fuca plate prior to subduction. These results give insight into the life cycle of oceanic plates, from their creation at a mid-ocean ridge to their subduction and subsequent recycling into the mantle.

  9. Continents as lithological icebergs: The importance of buoyant lithospheric roots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abbott, D.H.; Drury, R.; Mooney, W.D.

    1997-01-01

    An understanding of the formation of new continental crust provides an important guide to locating the oldest terrestrial rocks and minerals. We evaluated the crustal thicknesses of the thinnest stable continental crust and of an unsubductable oceanic plateau and used the resulting data to estimate the amount of mantle melting which produces permanent continental crust. The lithospheric mantle is sufficiently depleted to produce permanent buoyancy (i.e., the crust is unsubductable) at crustal thicknesses greater than 25-27 km. These unsubductable oceanic plateaus and hotspot island chains are important sources of new continental crust. The newest continental crust (e.g., the Ontong Java plateau) has a basaltic composition, not a granitic one. The observed structure and geochemistry of continents are the result of convergent margin magmatism and metamorphism which modify the nascent basaltic crust into a lowermost basaltic layer overlain by a more silicic upper crust. The definition of a continent should imply only that the lithosphere is unsubductable over ??? 0.25 Ga time periods. Therefore, the search for the oldest crustal rocks should include rocks from lower to mid-crustal levels.

  10. Nonlinear viscoplasticity in ASPECT: benchmarking and applications to subduction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glerum, Anne; Thieulot, Cedric; Fraters, Menno; Blom, Constantijn; Spakman, Wim

    2018-03-01

    ASPECT (Advanced Solver for Problems in Earth's ConvecTion) is a massively parallel finite element code originally designed for modeling thermal convection in the mantle with a Newtonian rheology. The code is characterized by modern numerical methods, high-performance parallelism and extensibility. This last characteristic is illustrated in this work: we have extended the use of ASPECT from global thermal convection modeling to upper-mantle-scale applications of subduction.Subduction modeling generally requires the tracking of multiple materials with different properties and with nonlinear viscous and viscoplastic rheologies. To this end, we implemented a frictional plasticity criterion that is combined with a viscous diffusion and dislocation creep rheology. Because ASPECT uses compositional fields to represent different materials, all material parameters are made dependent on a user-specified number of fields.The goal of this paper is primarily to describe and verify our implementations of complex, multi-material rheology by reproducing the results of four well-known two-dimensional benchmarks: the indentor benchmark, the brick experiment, the sandbox experiment and the slab detachment benchmark. Furthermore, we aim to provide hands-on examples for prospective users by demonstrating the use of multi-material viscoplasticity with three-dimensional, thermomechanical models of oceanic subduction, putting ASPECT on the map as a community code for high-resolution, nonlinear rheology subduction modeling.

  11. Dehydration-driven topotaxy in subduction zones

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-05-01

    Mineral replacement reactions play a fundamental role in the chemistry and the strength of the lithosphere. When externally or internally derived fluids are present, interface-coupled dissolution-precipitation is the driving mechanism for such reactions [1]. One of the microstructural features of this process is a 3D arrangement of crystallographic axes across internal interfaces (topotaxy) between reactant and product phases. Dehydration reactions are a special case of mineral replacement reaction that generates a transient fluid-filled porosity. Among others, the dehydration serpentinite is of special relevance in subduction zones because of the amount of fluids involved (potentially up to 13 wt.%). Two topotatic relationships between olivine and antigorite (the serpentine mineral stable at high temperature and pressure) have been reported in partially hydrated mantle wedge xenoliths [2]. Therefore, if precursor antigorite serpentine has a strong crystallographic preferred orientation (CPO) its dehydration might result in prograde peridotite with a strong inherited CPO. However for predicting the importance of topotactic reactions for seismic anisotropy of subduction zones we also need to consider the crystallization orthopyroxene + chlorite in the prograde reaction and, more importantly, the fact that this dehydration reaction produces a transient porosity of ca. 20 % vol. that results in local fluctuations of strain during compaction and fluid migration. We address this issue by a microstructural comparison between the CPO developed in olivine, orthopyroxene and chlorite during high-pressure antigorite dehydration in piston cylinder experiments (at 750ºC and 20 kbar and 1000ºC and 30 kbar, 168 h) and that recorded in natural samples (Cerro del Almirez, Betic Cordillera, Spain). Experimentally developed CPOs are strong. Prograde minerals show a significant inheritance of the former antigorite foliation. Topotactic relations are dominated by (001)atg//(100)ol

  12. Lithium inputs to subduction zones

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bouman, C.; Elliott, T.R.; Vroon, P.Z.

    2004-01-01

    We have studied the sedimentary and basaltic inputs of lithium to subduction zones. Various sediments from DSDP and ODP drill cores in front of the Mariana, South Sandwich, Banda, East Sunda and Lesser Antilles island arcs have been analysed and show highly variable Li contents and δ

  13. Lithospheric Structure of the Yamato Basin Inferred from Trans-dimensional Inversion of Receiver Functions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akuhara, T.; Nakahigashi, K.; Shinohara, M.; Yamada, T.; Yamashita, Y.; Shiobara, H.; Mochizuki, K.

    2017-12-01

    The Yamato Basin, located at the southeast of the Japan Sea, has been formed by the back-arc opening of the Japan Sea. Wide-angle reflection surveys have revealed that the basin has anomalously thickened crust compared with a normal oceanic crust [e.g., Nakahigashi et al., 2013] while deeper lithospheric structure has not known so far. Revealing the lithospheric structure of the Yamato Basin will lead to better understanding of the formation process of the Japan Sea and thus the Japanese island. In this study, as a first step toward understanding the lithospheric structure, we aim to detect the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB) using receiver functions (RFs). We use teleseismic P waveforms recorded by broad-band ocean-bottom seismometers (BBOBS) deployed at the Yamato Basin. We calculated radial-component RFs using the data with the removal of water reverberations from the vertical-component records [Akuhara et al., 2016]. The resultant RFs are more complicated than those calculated at an on-land station, most likely due to sediment-related reverberations. This complexity does not allow either direct detection of a Ps conversion from the LAB or forward modeling by a simple structure composed of a handful number of layers. To overcome this difficulty, we conducted trans-dimensional Markov Chain Monte Carlo inversion of RFs, where we do not need to assume the number of layers in advance [e.g., Bodin et al., 2012; Sambridge et al., 2014]. Our preliminary results show abrupt velocity reduction at 70 km depth, far greater depth than the expected LAB depth from the age of the lithosphere ( 20 Ma, although still debated). If this low-velocity jump truly reflects the LAB, the anomalously thickened lithosphere will provide a new constraint on the complex formation history of the Japan Sea. Further study, however, is required to deny the possibility that the obtained velocity jump is an artificial brought by the overfitting of noisy data.

  14. Subducted slabs and lateral viscosity variations: effects on the long-wavelength geoid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tosi, Nicola; Čadek, Ondřej; Martinec, Zdeněk

    2009-11-01

    The characteristic broad local maxima exhibited by the long-wavelength geoid over subduction zones are investigated with a numerical model of mantle flow. In a spherical axisymmetric geometry, a synthetic model of buoyancy driven subduction is used to test the effects on the geoid caused by the depth of penetration of the lithosphere into the mantle, by the viscosity stratification and by lateral viscosity variations (LVV) in the lithosphere, upper and lower mantle. The presence of anomalous slab density in the lower mantle guarantees geoid amplitudes comparable with the observations, favouring the picture of slabs that penetrate the transition zone and sink into the deep mantle. The viscosity of the lower mantle controls the long-wavelength geoid to the first order, ensuring a clear positive signal when it is at least 30-times greater than the upper-mantle viscosity. The presence of LVV in the lithosphere, in the form of weak plate margins, helps to increase the contribution of the surface topography, causing a pronounced reduction of the geoid. Localized LVV associated with the cold slab play a secondary role if they are in the upper mantle. On the other hand, highly viscous slabs in the lower mantle exert a large influence on the geoid. They cause its amplitude to increase dramatically, way beyond the values typically observed over subduction zones. Long-wavelength flow becomes less vigorous as the slab viscosity increases. Deformation in the upper mantle becomes more localized and power is transferred to short wavelengths, causing the long-wavelength surface topography to diminish and the total geoid to increase. Slabs may be then weakened in the lower mantle or retain their high viscosity while other mechanisms act to lower the geoid. It is shown that a phase change from perovskite to post-perovskite above the core-mantle boundary can cause the geoid to reduce significantly, thereby helping to reconcile models and observations.

  15. Magnetic properties of variably serpentinized peridotites and their implication for the evolution of oceanic core complexes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Maffione, M.; Morris, A.; Plümper, O.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/37155960X; van Hinsbergen, D.J.J.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/269263624

    Serpentinization of ultramafic rocks during hydrothermal alteration at mid-ocean ridges profoundly changes the physical, chemical, rheological, and magnetic properties of the oceanic lithosphere. There is renewed interest in this process following the discovery of widespread exposures of

  16. Life in the lithosphere, kinetics and the prospects for life elsewhere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cockell, Charles S

    2011-02-13

    The global contiguity of life on the Earth today is a result of the high flux of carbon and oxygen from oxygenic photosynthesis over the planetary surface and its use in aerobic respiration. Life's ability to directly use redox couples from components of the planetary lithosphere in a pre-oxygenic photosynthetic world can be investigated by studying the distribution of organisms that use energy sources normally bound within rocks, such as iron. Microbiological data from Iceland and the deep oceans show the kinetic limitations of living directly off igneous rocks in the lithosphere. Using energy directly extracted from rocks the lithosphere will support about six orders of magnitude less productivity than the present-day Earth, and it would be highly localized. Paradoxically, the biologically extreme conditions of the interior of a planet and the inimical conditions of outer space, between which life is trapped, are the locations from which volcanism and impact events, respectively, originate. These processes facilitate the release of redox couples from the planetary lithosphere and might enable it to achieve planetary-scale productivity approximately one to two orders of magnitude lower than that produced by oxygenic photosynthesis. The significance of the detection of extra-terrestrial life is that it will allow us to test these observations elsewhere and establish an understanding of universal relationships between lithospheres and life. These data also show that the search for extra-terrestrial life must be accomplished by 'following the kinetics', which is different from following the water or energy.

  17. The long-term evolution of subduction zones : a modelling study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Olbertz, D.C.

    1997-01-01

    The motion of oceanic and continental lithosphere, volcanic activity, earthquakes, and other tectonic activities are expressions of processes in the Earth's mantle. Nowadays, it is widely accepted that these phenomena are related to convective flow in the mantle, which forms the mechanism to turn

  18. Lithospheric architecture of the South-Western Alps revealed by multiparameter teleseismic full-waveform inversion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beller, S.; Monteiller, V.; Operto, S.; Nolet, G.; Paul, A.; Zhao, L.

    2018-02-01

    The Western Alps, although being intensively investigated, remains elusive when it comes to determining its lithospheric structure. New inferences on the latter are important for the understanding of processes and mechanisms of orogeny needed to unravel the dynamic evolution of the Alps. This situation led to the deployment of the CIFALPS temporary experiment, conducted to address the lack of seismological data amenable to high-resolution seismic imaging of the crust and the upper mantle. We perform a 3-D isotropic full-waveform inversion (FWI) of nine teleseismic events recorded by the CIFALPS experiment to infer 3-D models of both density and P- and S-wave velocities of the Alpine lithosphere. Here, by FWI is meant the inversion of the full seismograms including phase and amplitude effects within a time window following the first arrival up to a frequency of 0.2 Hz. We show that the application of the FWI at the lithospheric scale is able to generate images of the lithosphere with unprecedented resolution and can furnish a reliable density model of the upper lithosphere. In the shallowest part of the crust, we retrieve the shape of the fast/dense Ivrea body anomaly and detect the low velocities of the Po and SE France sedimentary basins. The geometry of the Ivrea body as revealed by our density model is consistent with the Bouguer anomaly. A sharp Moho transition is followed from the external part (30 km depth) to the internal part of the Alps (70-80 km depth), giving clear evidence of a continental subduction event during the formation of the Alpine Belt. A low-velocity zone in the lower lithosphere of the S-wave velocity model supports the hypothesis of a slab detachment in the western part of the Alps that is followed by asthenospheric upwelling. The application of FWI to teleseismic data helps to fill the gap of resolution between traditional imaging techniques, and enables integrated interpretations of both upper and lower lithospheric structures.

  19. Impact of lithospheric rheology on surface topography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liao, K.; Becker, T. W.

    2017-12-01

    The expression of mantle flow such as due to a buoyant plume as surface topography is a classical problem, yet the role of rheological complexities could benefit from further exploration. Here, we investigate the topographic expressions of mantle flow by means of numerical and analytical approaches. In numerical modeling, both conventional, free-slip and more realistic, stress-free boundary conditions are applied. For purely viscous rheology, a high viscosity lithosphere will lead to slight overestimates of topography for certain settings, which can be understood by effectively modified boundary conditions. Under stress-free conditions, numerical and analytical results show that the magnitude of dynamic topography decreases with increasing lithosphere thickness (L) and viscosity (ηL), as L-1 and ηL-3. The wavelength of dynamic topography increases linearly with L and (ηL/ ηM) 1/3. We also explore the time-dependent interactions of a rising plume with the lithosphere. For a layered lithosphere with a decoupling weak lower crust embedded between stronger upper crust and lithospheric mantle, dynamic topography increases with a thinner and weaker lower crust. The dynamic topography saturates when the decoupling viscosity is 3-4 orders lower than the viscosity of upper crust and lithospheric mantle. We further explore the role of visco-elastic and visco-elasto-plastic rheologies.

  20. The viscosity of Earth's lower mantle inferred from sinking speed of subducted lithosphere

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Čížková, H.; van den Berg, A.P.; Spakman, W.; Matyska, C.

    2012-01-01

    The viscosity of the mantle is indispensable for predicting Earth's mechanical behavior at scales ranging from deep mantle material flow to local stress accumulation in earthquakes zones. But, mantle viscosity is not well determined. For the lower mantle, particularly, only few constraints result

  1. Reconciling the shadow of a subduction signature with rift geochemistry and tectonic environment in Eastern Marie Byrd Land, Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    LeMasurier, Wesley E.; Choi, Sung Hi; Hart, Stanley R.; Mukasa, Sam; Rogers, Nick

    2016-09-01

    Basalt-trachyte volcanoes in the Marie Byrd Land (MBL) Cenozoic province lie along the Amundsen Sea coast on the north flank of the West Antarctic rift. Basalts here are characterized by OIB-like geochemistry, restricted ranges of 87Sr/86Sr (0.702535-0.703284) and 143Nd/144Nd (0.512839-0.513008) and a wide range of 206Pb/204Pb (19.357-20.934). Basalts at three MBL volcanoes display two anomalies compared with the above and with all other basalts in West Antarctica. They include 143Nd/144Nd (0.512778-0.512789) values at Mt. Takahe and Mt. Siple that are 2σ lower than other West Antarctic basalts, and Ba/Nb, Ba/La, and Ba/Th values at Mt. Murphy and Mt. Takahe that are 3-8 times higher than normal OIB. Isotope and trace element data do not support crustal and lithospheric mantle contamination, or the presence of residual mantle amphibole or phlogopite as explanations of these anomalies. The apparent coincidence of these anomalies with the site of a pre-Cenozoic convergence zone along the Gondwanaland margin suggests a subduction influence. Major episodes of subduction and granitic plutonism took place in MBL during the Devonian, Permian, and Late Cretaceous. Relicts in the source region, of components from these subducted slabs, provide a credible explanation for the uncoupling of Ba from other large ion lithophile elements (LILE), for its erratic distribution, and for the anomalously low 143Nd/144Nd at Mt. Takahe. The last episode of subduction ended 85 Ma, and was followed by continental break-up, rifting and lithospheric attenuation that produced the West Antarctic rift as we know it today. Thus, the enigmatic geochemical signatures in these three volcanoes seem to have been preserved roughly 61-85 m.y. after subduction ended. New calculations of source melting depth and a new determination of lithospheric thickness suggest that the source of the anomalies resides in a fossil mélange diapir that rose from the Cretaceous subducting slab, became attached to the

  2. Trench Advance By the Subduction of Buoyant Features - Application to the Izu-Bonin-Marianas Arc

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goes, S. D. B.; Fourel, L.; Morra, G.

    2014-12-01

    Most subduction trenches retreat, not only today but throughout the Cenozoic. However, a few trenches clearly advance during part of the evolution, including Izu-Bonin Marianas (IBM) and Kermadec. Trench retreat is well understood as a basic consequence of slab pull, but it is debated what causes trench advance. The IBM trench underwent a complex evolution: right after its initiation, it rotated clockwise, leading to very fast retreat in the north and slow retreat in the south. But since 10-15 Ma, IBM trench motions have switched to advance at the southern end, and since 5 Ma also the northern end is advancing. Based on 2-D subduction models, it has been proposed proposed that the change in age of the subducting plate at the IBM trench (from 40-70 m.y. at the initiation of the trench 45 m.y. ago to 100-140 m.y. lithosphere subducting at the trench today) and its effect on plate strength could explain the transition from trench retreat to trench advance, and that the age gradient (younger in the north and older in the south) could explain the rotation of the trench. However, with new 3-D coupled fluid-solid subduction model where we can include such lateral age gradients, we find that this does not yield the observed behaviour. Instead, we propose an alternative mechanism, involving the subduction of the buoyant Caroline Island Ridge at the southern edge of the Mariana trench and show that it can explain both trench motion history and the current morphology of the IBM slab as imaged by seismic tomography.

  3. Generation of continental rifts, basins, and swells by lithosphere instabilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fourel, Loïc.; Milelli, Laura; Jaupart, Claude; Limare, Angela

    2013-06-01

    Continents may be affected simultaneously by rifting, uplift, volcanic activity, and basin formation in several different locations, suggesting a common driving mechanism that is intrinsic to continents. We describe a new type of convective instability at the base of the lithosphere that leads to a remarkable spatial pattern at the scale of an entire continent. We carried out fluid mechanics laboratory experiments on buoyant blocks of finite size that became unstable due to cooling from above. Dynamical behavior depends on three dimensionless numbers, a Rayleigh number for the unstable block, a buoyancy number that scales the intrinsic density contrast to the thermal one, and the aspect ratio of the block. Within the block, instability develops in two different ways in an outer annulus and in an interior region. In the outer annulus, upwellings and downwellings take the form of periodically spaced radial spokes. The interior region hosts the more familiar convective pattern of polygonal cells. In geological conditions, such instabilities should manifest themselves as linear rifts striking at a right angle to the continent-ocean boundary and an array of domal uplifts, volcanic swells, and basins in the continental interior. Simple scaling laws for the dimensions and spacings of the convective structures are derived. For the subcontinental lithospheric mantle, these dimensions take values in the 500-1000 km range, close to geological examples. The large intrinsic buoyancy of Archean lithospheric roots prevents this type of instability, which explains why the widespread volcanic activity that currently affects Western Africa is confined to post-Archean domains.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-12-01

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

  5. Subduction and vertical coastal motions in the eastern Mediterranean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howell, Andy; Jackson, James; Copley, Alex; McKenzie, Dan; Nissen, Ed

    2017-10-01

    Convergence in the eastern Mediterranean of oceanic Nubia with Anatolia and the Aegean is complex and poorly understood. Large volumes of sediment obscure the shallow structure of the subduction zone, and since much of the convergence is accommodated aseismically, there are limited earthquake data to constrain its kinematics. We present new source models for recent earthquakes, combining these with field observations, published GPS velocities and reflection-seismic data to investigate faulting in three areas: the Florence Rise, SW Turkey and the Pliny and Strabo Trenches. The depths and locations of earthquakes reveal the geometry of the subducting Nubian plate NE of the Florence Rise, a bathymetric high that is probably formed by deformation of sediment at the surface projection of the Anatolia-Nubia subduction interface. In SW Turkey, the presence of a strike-slip shear zone has often been inferred despite an absence of strike-slip earthquakes. We show that the GPS-derived strain-rate field is consistent with extension on the orthogonal systems of normal faults observed in the region and that strike-slip faulting is not required to explain observed GPS velocities. Further SW, the Pliny and Strabo Trenches are also often interpreted as strike-slip shear zones, but almost all nearby earthquakes have either reverse-faulting or normal-faulting focal mechanisms. Oblique convergence across the trenches may be accommodated either by a partitioned system of strike-slip and reverse faults or by oblique slip on the Aegean-Nubia subduction interface. The observed late-Quaternary vertical motions of coastlines close to the subduction zone are influenced by the interplay between: (1) thickening of the material overriding the subduction interface associated with convergence, which promotes coastal uplift; and (2) subsidence due to extension and associated crustal thinning. Long-wavelength gravity data suggest that some of the observed topographic contrasts in the eastern

  6. Seismic Structure of Mantle Transition Zone beneath Northwest Pacific Subduction Zone and its Dynamic Implication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, J.; Guo, G.; WANG, X.; Chen, Q.

    2017-12-01

    The northwest Pacific subduction region is an ideal location to study the interaction between the subducting slab and upper mantle discontinuities. Various and complex geometry of the Pacific subducting slab can be well traced downward from the Kuril, Japan and Izu-Bonin trench using seismicity and tomography images (Fukao and Obayashi, 2013). Due to the sparse distribution of seismic stations in the sea, investigation of the deep mantle structure beneath the broad sea regions is very limited. In this study, we applied the well- developed multiple-ScS reverberations method (Wang et al., 2017) to analyze waveforms recorded by the Chinese Regional Seismic Network, the densely distributed temporary seismic array stations installed in east Asia. A map of the topography of the upper mantle discontinuities beneath the broad oceanic regions in northwest Pacific subduction zone is imaged. We also applied the receiver function analysis to waveforms recorded by stations in northeast China and obtain the detailed topography map beneath east Asia continental regions. We then combine the two kinds of topography of upper mantle discontinuities beneath oceanic and continental regions respectively, which are obtained from totally different methods. A careful image matching and spatial correlation is made in the overlapping study regions to calibrate results with different resolution. This is the first time to show systematically a complete view of the topography of the 410-km and 660-km discontinuities beneath the east Asia "Big mantle wedge" (Zhao and Ohtani, 2009) covering the broad oceanic and continental regions in the Northwestern Pacific Subduction zone. Topography pattern of the 660 and 410 is obtained and discussed. Especially we discovered a broad depression of the 410-km discontinuity covering more than 1000 km in lateral, which seems abnormal in the cold subducting tectonic environment. Based on plate tectonic reconstruction studies and HTHP mineral experiments, we

  7. Assessment of Optimum Value for Dip Angle and Locking Rate Parameters in Makran Subduction Zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Safari, A.; Abolghasem, A. M.; Abedini, N.; Mousavi, Z.

    2017-09-01

    Makran subduction zone is one of the convergent areas that have been studied by spatial geodesy. Makran zone is located in the South Eastern of Iran and South of Pakistan forming the part of Eurasian-Arabian plate's border where oceanic crust in the Arabian plate (or in Oman Sea) subducts under the Eurasian plate ( Farhoudi and Karig, 1977). Due to lack of historical and modern tools in the area, a sampling of sparse measurements of the permanent GPS stations and temporary stations (campaign) has been conducted in the past decade. Makran subduction zone from different perspectives has unusual behaviour: For example, the Eastern and Western parts of the region have very different seismicity and also dip angle of subducted plate is in about 2 to 8 degrees that this value due to the dip angle in other subduction zone is very low. In this study, we want to find the best possible value for parameters that differs Makran subduction zone from other subduction zones. Rigid block modelling method was used to determine these parameters. From the velocity vectors calculated from GPS observations in this area, block model is formed. These observations are obtained from GPS stations that a number of them are located in South Eastern Iran and South Western Pakistan and a station located in North Eastern Oman. According to previous studies in which the locking depth of Makran subduction zone is 38km (Frohling, 2016), in the preparation of this model, parameter value of at least 38 km is considered. With this function, the amount of 2 degree value is the best value for dip angle but for the locking rate there is not any specified amount. Because the proposed model is not sensitive to this parameter. So we can not expect big earthquakes in West of Makran or a low seismicity activity in there but the proposed model definitely shows the Makran subduction layer is locked.

  8. Formation of cratonic lithosphere: An integrated thermal and petrological model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herzberg, Claude; Rudnick, Roberta

    2012-09-01

    The formation of cratonic mantle peridotite of Archean age is examined within the time frame of Earth's thermal history, and how it was expressed by temporal variations in magma and residue petrology. Peridotite residues that occupy the lithospheric mantle are rare owing to the effects of melt-rock reaction, metasomatism, and refertilization. Where they are identified, they are very similar to the predicted harzburgite residues of primary magmas of the dominant basalts in greenstone belts, which formed in a non-arc setting (referred to here as "non-arc basalts"). The compositions of these basalts indicate high temperatures of formation that are well-described by the thermal history model of Korenaga. In this model, peridotite residues of extensive ambient mantle melting had the highest Mg-numbers, lowest FeO contents, and lowest densities at ~ 2.5-3.5 Ga. These results are in good agreement with Re-Os ages of kimberlite-hosted cratonic mantle xenoliths and enclosed sulfides, and provide support for the hypothesis of Jordan that low densities of cratonic mantle are a measure of their high preservation potential. Cratonization of the Earth reached its zenith at ~ 2.5-3.5 Ga when ambient mantle was hot and extensive melting produced oceanic crust 30-45 km thick. However, there is a mass imbalance exhibited by the craton-wide distribution of harzburgite residues and the paucity of their complementary magmas that had compositions like the non-arc basalts. We suggest that the problem of the missing basaltic oceanic crust can be resolved by its hydration, cooling and partial transformation to eclogite, which caused foundering of the entire lithosphere. Some of the oceanic crust partially melted during foundering to produce continental crust composed of tonalite-trondhjemite-granodiorite (TTG). The remaining lithosphere gravitationally separated into 1) residual eclogite that continued its descent, and 2) buoyant harzburgite diapirs that rose to underplate cratonic nuclei

  9. Late Miocene Pacific plate kinematic change explained with coupled global models of mantle and lithosphere dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stotz, I. L.; Iaffaldano, G.; Davies, D. R.

    2017-07-01

    The timing and magnitude of a Pacific plate motion change within the past 10 Ma remains enigmatic, due to the noise associated with finite-rotation data. Nonetheless, it has been hypothesized that this change was driven by the arrival of the Ontong Java Plateau (OJP) at the Melanesian arc and the consequent subduction polarity reversal. The uncertainties associated with the timing of this event, however, make it difficult to quantitatively demonstrate a dynamical association. Here, we first reconstruct the Pacific plate's absolute motion since the mid-Miocene (15 Ma), at high-temporal resolution, building on previous efforts to mitigate the impact of finite-rotation data noise. We find that the largest change in Pacific plate-motion direction occurred between 10 and 5 Ma, with the plate rotating clockwise. We subsequently develop and use coupled global numerical models of the mantle/lithosphere system to test hypotheses on the dynamics driving this change. These indicate that the arrival of the OJP at the Melanesian arc, between 10 and 5 Ma, followed by a subduction polarity reversal that marked the initiation of subduction of the Australian plate underneath the Pacific realm, were the key drivers of this kinematic change.

  10. A New Paradigm for New Oceans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foulger, G. R.; Doré, A. G.; Franke, D.; Geoffroy, L.; Gernigon, L.; Hole, M.; Hoskuldsson, A.; Julian, B. R.; Kusznir, N.; Martinez, F.; Natland, J. H.; Peace, A.; Petersen, K. D.; Schiffer, C.; Stephenson, R.; Stoker, M. S.

    2017-12-01

    The original simple theory of plate tectonics had to be refined to accommodate second-order geological features such as back-arc basins and continental deformation zones. We propose an additional refinement that is required by complexities that form and persist in new oceans when inhomogeneous continental lithosphere/tectosphere disintegrates. Such complexities include continual plate-boundary reorganizations and migrations, distributed continental material in the ocean, propagating and dying ridges, and sagging, flexing and tilting in the oceans and at continent-ocean boundary zones. Reorganizations of stress and motion persist, resulting in variable orientations over short distances, tectonic reactivations, complex plate boundary configurations including multiple triple junctions, and the formation and abandonment of oceanic microplates. Resulting local compressions and extensions are manifest as bathymetric anomalies, vertical motions, and distributed volcanism at various times and places as the new ocean grows. Examples of regions that exhibit some or all of these features include the North Atlantic, the Rio Grande Rise/Walvis Ridge region of the South Atlantic, and the Seychelles-Mauritius region in the Indian Ocean. We suggest that these complexities arise as a result of the formation of new spreading plate boundaries by rifts propagating through continental lithosphere/tectosphere that is anisotropic as a result of inherited structure/composition and/or a sub-lithospheric mantle destabilized by lithospheric-controlled processes. Such scenarios result in complicated disintegration of continents and local persistent dynamic instability in the new ocean.

  11. Xenoliths in Eocene lavas from Central Tibet record carbonated metasomatism of the lithosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goussin, Fanny; Cordier, Carole; Boulvais, Philippe; Guillot, Stéphane; Roperch, Pierrick; Replumaz, Anne

    2017-04-01

    Nanjagbarwa in the Tethyan Himalayas (3.6-5.5 Ma) [Yang and Woolley, 2006]. Considering as such the Nangqian xenocrystic cumulates, Eocene carbonatites preferentially occurred on the three edges of the Songpan-Ganze block, and we propose that their mantellic sources were all affected by an input of subducted carbonates during the Triassic closure of the Songpan-Ganze ocean. Ages and local field relationships furthermore indicate that melting occurred during Eocene-Oligocene compressive events that propagated outward from the Songpan-Ganze block, suggesting renewed subduction of the block margins following the onset of the India-Asia collision. References: Spurlin, M. S., Yin, A., Horton, B. K., Zhou, J., & Wang, J. (2005). Structural evolution of the Yushu-Nangqian region and its relationship to syncollisional igneous activity, east-central Tibet. Geological Society of America Bulletin, 117(9-10), 1293-1317. Xu, Y., Bi, X. W., Hu, R. Z., Chen, Y. W., Liu, H. Q., & Xu, L. L. (2016). Geochronology and geochemistry of Eocene potassic felsic intrusions in the Nangqian basin, eastern Tibet: Tectonic and metallogenic implications. Lithos, 246, 212-227. Yang, Z., & Woolley, A. (2006). Carbonatites in China: a review. Journal of Asian Earth Sciences, 27(5), 559-575.

  12. Geothermics of the Apenninic subduction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Zito

    1997-06-01

    Full Text Available The subduction of the Adriatic microplate is analysed from a geothermal point of view. In particular four main geodynamic units are distinguished: foreland, foredeep and slab, accretionary prism, and back-arc basin. Each of them is examined from a geothermal point of view and the related open question are discussed. The most relevant results are the determination of the undisturbed geothermal gradient in the aquifer of the foreland; the discovery of a « hot » accretionary prism; and a new model of instantaneous extension of the back-arc basins. The main conclusion is that geothermal data are consistent with a westward dipping subduction that migrated eastward producing a sequence of several episodes at the surface.

  13. Coupling of Oceanic and Continental Crust During Eocene Eclogite-Facies Metamorphism: Evidence From the Monte Rosa Nappe, Western Alps, Italy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lapen, T. J.; Johnson, C. M.; Baumgartner, L. P.; Skora, S.; Mahlen, N. J.; Beard, B. L.

    2006-12-01

    Subduction of continental crust to HP-UHP metamorphic conditions requires overcoming density contrasts that are unfavorable to deep burial, whereas exhumation of these rocks can be reasonably explained through buoyancy-assisted transport in the subduction channel to more shallow depths. In the western Alps, both continental and oceanic lithosphere has been subducted to eclogite-facies metamorphic conditions. The burial and exhumation histories of these sections of lithosphere bear directly on the dynamics of subduction and the stacking of units within the subduction channel. We address the burial history of the continental crust with high precision U-Pb rutile and Lu-Hf garnet geochronology of the eclogite-facies Monte Rosa nappe (MR), western Alps, Italy. U-Pb rutile ages from quartz-carbonate-white mica-rutile veins that are hosted within eclogite and schist of the MR, Gressoney Valley, Italy, indicate that it was at eclogite-facies metamorphic conditions at 42.6 +/- 0.6 Ma. The sample area (Indren glacier, Furgg zone; Dal Piaz, 2001) consists of eclogite boudins that are surrounded by micaceous schist. Associated with the eclogite and schist are quartz-carbonate-white mica-rutile veins that formed in tension cracks in the eclogite and along the contact between eclogite and surrounding schist. Intrusion of the veins occurred at eclogite-facies metamorphic conditions (480-570°C, >1.3-1.4 GPa) based on textural relations, oxygen isotope thermometry, and geothermobarometry. Lu-Hf geochronology of garnet from a chloritoid-talc-garnet-phengite-quartz-calcite-pyrite - chalcopyrite bearing boudin within talc-chloritoid whiteschists of the MR, Val d'Ayas, Italy (Chopin and Monie, 1984; Pawlig, 2001) yields an age of 40.54 +/- 0.36 Ma. The talc-chloritoid whiteschists from the area record pressures and temperatures of 1.6-2.4 GPa and 500-530°C (Chopin and Monie, 1984; Le Bayon et al., 2006) indicating near UHP metamorphic conditions. Based on the age, P-T, and textural

  14. Building and Modification of the Continental Lithosphere: the History of the Contiguous U.S. as told by MLDs and LABs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hopper, E.; Fischer, K. M.

    2016-12-01

    The lithosphere preserves a record of past and present tectonic processes in its internal structures and its boundary with the underlying asthenosphere. We use common conversion point stacked Sp converted waves recorded by EarthScope's Transportable Array, as well as other available permanent and temporary broadband stations, to image such structures in the lithospheric mantle of the contiguous U.S. In the tectonically youngest western U.S., a shallow, sharp velocity gradient at the base of the lithosphere suggests a boundary defined by ponded melt. The lithosphere thickens with age of volcanism, implying the lithosphere is a melt-mitigated, conductively cooling thermal boundary layer. Beneath older, colder lithosphere where melt fractions are likely much lower, the velocity gradient at the base of such a layer should be a more diffuse, primarily thermal boundary. This is consistent with observations in the eastern U.S. where the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB) is locally sharp and shallower only in areas of inferred enhanced upwelling - such as ancient hot spot tracks and areas of inferred delamination. In the cratonic interior, the LAB is even more gradual in depth, and is transparent to Sp waves with dominant periods of 10 s. Although seismic imaging only provides a snapshot of the lithosphere as it is today, preserved internal structures extend the utility of this imaging back into deep geological time. Ancient accretion within the cratonic lithospheric mantle is preserved as dipping structures associated with relict subducted slabs from Paleoproterozoic continental accretion, suggesting that lateral accretion was integral to the cratonic mantle root formation process. Metasomatism, melt migration and ponding below a carbonated peridotite solidus explain a sub-horizontal mid-lithospheric discontinuity (MLD) commonly observed at 70-100 km depth. This type of MLD is strongest in Mesoproterozoic and older lithosphere, suggesting that it formed more

  15. Regional Crustal Deformation and Lithosphere Thickness Observed with Geodetic Techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vermeer, M.; Poutanen, M.; Kollo, K.; Koivula, H.; Ahola, J.

    2009-04-01

    The solid Earth, including the lithosphere, interacts in many ways with other components of the Earth system, oceans, atmosphere and climate. Geodesy is a key provider of data needed for global and environmental research. Geodesy provides methods and accurate measurements of contemporary deformation, sea level and gravity change. The importance of the decades-long stability and availability of reference frames must be stressed for such studies. In the future, the need to accurately monitor 3-D crustal motions will grow, both together with increasingly precise GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite System) positioning, demands for better follow-up of global change, and local needs for crustal motions, especially in coastal areas. These demands cannot yet be satisfied. The project described here is a part of a larger entity: Upper Mantle Dynamics and Quaternary Climate in Cratonic Areas, DynaQlim, an International Lithosphere Project (ILP) -sponsored initiative. The aims of DynaQlim are to understand the relations between upper mantle dynamics, mantle composition, physical properties, temperature and rheology, to study the postglacial uplift and ice thickness models, sea level change and isostatic response, Quaternary climate variations and Weichselian (Laurentian and other) glaciations during the late Quaternary. We aim at studying various aspects of lithospheric motion within the Finnish and Fennoscandian area, but within a global perspective, by the newest geodetic techniques in a multidisciplinary setting. The studies involve observations of three-dimensional motions and gravity change in a multidisciplinary context on a range of spatial scales: the whole of Fennoscandia, Finland, a regional test area of Satakunta, and the local test site Olkiluoto. Objectives of the research include improving our insight into the 3-D motion of a thick lithosphere, and into the gravity effect of the uplift, using novel approaches; improving the kinematic 3-D models in the

  16. A rapid method to map the crustal and lithospheric thickness using elevation, geoid anomaly and thermal analysis. Application to the Gibraltar Arc System, Atlas Mountains and adjacent zones

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fullea, J.; Fernàndez, M.; Zeyen, H.; Vergés, J.

    2007-02-01

    We present a method based on the combination of elevation and geoid anomaly data together with thermal field to map crustal and lithospheric thickness. The main assumptions are local isostasy and a four-layered model composed of crust, lithospheric mantle, sea water and the asthenosphere. We consider a linear density gradient for the crust and a temperature dependent density for the lithospheric mantle. We perform sensitivity tests to evaluate the effect of the variation of the model parameters and the influence of RMS error of elevation and geoid anomaly databases. The application of this method to the Gibraltar Arc System, Atlas Mountains and adjacent zones reveals the presence of a lithospheric thinning zone, SW-NE oriented. This zone affects the High and Middle Atlas and extends from the Canary Islands to the eastern Alboran Basin and is probably linked with a similarly trending zone of thick lithosphere constituting the western Betics, eastern Rif, Rharb Basin, and Gulf of Cadiz. A number of different, even mutually opposite, geodynamic models have been proposed to explain the origin and evolution of the study area. Our results suggest that a plausible slab-retreating model should incorporate tear and asymmetric roll-back of the subducting slab to fit the present-day observed lithosphere geometry. In this context, the lithospheric thinning would be caused by lateral asthenospheric flow. An alternative mechanism responsible for lithospheric thinning is the presence of a hot magmatic reservoir derived from a deep ancient plume centred in the Canary Island, and extending as far as Central Europe.

  17. Mission Moho: Rationale for drilling deep through the ocean crust into the upper mantle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ildefonse, B.; Abe, N.; Kelemen, P. B.; Kumagai, H.; Teagle, D. A. H.; Wilson, D. S.; Moho Proponents, Mission

    2009-04-01

    Sampling a complete section of the ocean crust to the Moho was the original inspiration for scientific ocean drilling, and remains the main goal of the 21st Century Mohole Initiative in the IODP Science Plan. Fundamental questions about the composition, structure, and geophysical characteristics of the ocean lithosphere, and about the magnitude of chemical exchanges between the mantle, crust and oceans remain unresolved due to the absence of in-situ samples and measurements. The geological nature of the Mohorovičić discontinuity itself remains poorly constrained. "Mission Moho" is a proposal that was submitted to IODP in April 2007, with the ambition to drill completely through intact oceanic crust formed at a fast spreading rate, across the Moho and into the uppermost mantle. Although, eventually, no long-term mission was approved by IODP, the scientific objectives related to deep drilling in the ocean crust remain essential to our understanding of the Earth. These objectives are to : - Determine the geological meaning of the Moho in different oceanic settings, determine the in situ composition, structure and physical properties of the uppermost mantle, and understand mantle melt migration, - Determine the bulk composition of the oceanic crust to establish the chemical links between erupted lavas and primary mantle melts, understand the extent and intensity of seawater hydrothermal exchange with the lithosphere, and estimate the chemical fluxes returned to the mantle by subduction, - Test competing hypotheses of the ocean crust accretion at fast spreading mid-ocean ridges, and quantify the linkages and feedbacks between magma intrusion, hydrothermal circulation and tectonic activity, - Calibrate regional seismic measurements against recovered cores and borehole measurements, and understand the origin of marine magnetic anomalies, - Establish the limits of life in the ocean lithosphere. The "MoHole" was planned as the final stage of Mission Moho, which requires

  18. Depleted and metasomatized oceanic lithosphere beneath La Palma, Canary Islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janisch, Astrid; Ntaflos, Theodoros

    2017-04-01

    Due to the inaccessibility of Earth's interior, xenoliths became the best possibility to study the chemical composition of the earth mantle as well as its various processes. Three samples out of the sample suite of mantle peridotites from San Antonio Volcano on La Palma, Canary Islands, have been chosen to illustrate three examples of diverse mantle metasomatic events. The first sample, a pyroxene-hornblende-peridotite, was influenced by an alkali-rich, silicic-hydrous undersaturated melt and/or fluid forming a conspicuous cross-cutting amphibole-apatite-dyke with several veins percolating through the rock. Forsterite content in olivine varies between 82.5 - 85.5 and 86.0 - 89.0, suggesting at least two different occurrences of metasomatic overprint. Clinopyroxenes are mostly found in association with amphibole and in textural equilibrium hinting that both minerals may have grown together, while orthopyroxene have only been found as remnant inclusions in olivine. These clinopyroxenes are Cr-Diopsides with En43.40-50.97-Wo43.99-48.64-Fs4.30-8.22 and Mg# between 85.54 and 92.36. Secondary clinopyroxenes are Ti-Augites with En39.86-46.81-Wo46.65-51.98-Fs5.86-8.72 and Mg# of 82.44 - 89.09. The second sample, a sp-dunite, is characterized by haüyne-bearing melt veins which clearly indicate host-basalt infiltration. The haüyne is always in contact with amphibole, spinel and clinopyroxene denoting that they have been formed at the same time because there is no evidence for reaction among these phases. The melt infiltration apparently took place prior to xenolith entrainment in the host basalt. Primary olivine has Fo content of 89.57 - 89.67 with NiO ranging from 0.32 - 0.334, in contrast Fo content in secondary olivine varies from 89.05 - 90.86 and NiO fluctuates between 0.24 - 0.31. Cr-Diopside compositions are in range of En41.63-47.05-Wo47.83-51-90-Fs4.93-6.64 and Mg# between 86.48 - 90.50. The third sample is also a sp-dunite and marked by a network of phlogopite-amphibole veins cutting through pre-existing olivine implying a formation of the veins prior to xenolith entrainment in the host basalt. During ascend melt infiltrated the peridotite mostly along these veins forming a reaction zone causing growth of secondary clinopyroxene and altering contiguous olivine. Amphiboles found in the matrix have a slightly different chemical composition compared to amphiboles forming the veins indicating that these are the result of melt influence. Clinopyroxenes are secondary Ti-Diopsides with En40.82-49.42-Wo45.20-51.63-Fs4.99-7.56 and Mg# of 84.51 - 91.09 within the phlogopite-amphibole veins and secondary Cr-Diopsides with En43.32-49.64-Wo45.85-51.61-Fs4.16-5.55 and Mg# ranging from 88.77 - 92.48 apart from the phlogopite-amphibole-veins. Olivines within the veins show Fo values of 88.18 - 89.68 whereas Fo content in primary olivines is more homogeneous and varies between 90.03 and 90.66. Amphiboles in all three samples are pargasites and kaersutitic pargasites.

  19. Large-scale subduction of continental crust implied by India-Asia mass-balance calculation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ingalls, Miquela; Rowley, David B.; Currie, Brian; Colman, Albert S.

    2016-11-01

    Continental crust is buoyant compared with its oceanic counterpart and resists subduction into the mantle. When two continents collide, the mass balance for the continental crust is therefore assumed to be maintained. Here we use estimates of pre-collisional crustal thickness and convergence history derived from plate kinematic models to calculate the crustal mass balance in the India-Asia collisional system. Using the current best estimates for the timing of the diachronous onset of collision between India and Eurasia, we find that about 50% of the pre-collisional continental crustal mass cannot be accounted for in the crustal reservoir preserved at Earth's surface today--represented by the mass preserved in the thickened crust that makes up the Himalaya, Tibet and much of adjacent Asia, as well as southeast Asian tectonic escape and exported eroded sediments. This implies large-scale subduction of continental crust during the collision, with a mass equivalent to about 15% of the total oceanic crustal subduction flux since 56 million years ago. We suggest that similar contamination of the mantle by direct input of radiogenic continental crustal materials during past continent-continent collisions is reflected in some ocean crust and ocean island basalt geochemistry. The subduction of continental crust may therefore contribute significantly to the evolution of mantle geochemistry.

  20. Are subduction zones invading the atlantic? Evidence from the southwest iberia margin

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Duarte, João C.; Rosas, Filipe M.; Terrinha, Pedro; Schellart, Wouter P.; Boutelier, David; Gutscher, Marc André; Ribeiro, António

    Subduction initiation at passive margins plays a central role in the plate tectonics theory. However, the process by which a passive margin becomes active is not well understood. In this paper we use the southwest Iberia margin (SIM) in the Atlantic Ocean to study the process of passive margin

  1. Highly CO2-supersaturated melts in the Pannonian lithospheric mantle - A transient carbon reservoir?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Créon, Laura; Rouchon, Virgile; Youssef, Souhail; Rosenberg, Elisabeth; Delpech, Guillaume; Szabó, Csaba; Remusat, Laurent; Mostefaoui, Smail; Asimow, Paul D.; Antoshechkina, Paula M.; Ghiorso, Mark S.; Boller, Elodie; Guyot, François

    2017-08-01

    Subduction of carbonated crust is widely believed to generate a flux of carbon into the base of the continental lithospheric mantle, which in turn is the likely source of widespread volcanic and non-volcanic CO2 degassing in active tectonic intracontinental settings such as rifts, continental margin arcs and back-arc domains. However, the magnitude of the carbon flux through the lithosphere and the budget of stored carbon held within the lithospheric reservoir are both poorly known. We provide new constraints on the CO2 budget of the lithospheric mantle below the Pannonian Basin (Central Europe) through the study of a suite of xenoliths from the Bakony-Balaton Highland Volcanic Field. Trails of secondary fluid inclusions, silicate melt inclusions, networks of melt veins, and melt pockets with large and abundant vesicles provide numerous lines of evidence that mantle metasomatism affected the lithosphere beneath this region. We obtain a quantitative estimate of the CO2 budget of the mantle below the Pannonian Basin using a combination of innovative analytical and modeling approaches: (1) synchrotron X-ray microtomography, (2) NanoSIMS, Raman spectroscopy and microthermometry, and (3) thermodynamic models (Rhyolite-MELTS). The three-dimensional volumes reconstructed from synchrotron X-ray microtomography allow us to quantify the proportions of all petrographic phases in the samples and to visualize their textural relationships. The concentration of CO2 in glass veins and pockets ranges from 0.27 to 0.96 wt.%, higher than in typical arc magmas (0-0.25 wt.% CO2), whereas the H2O concentration ranges from 0.54 to 4.25 wt.%, on the low end for estimated primitive arc magmas (1.9-6.3 wt.% H2O). Trapping pressures for vesicles were determined by comparing CO2 concentrations in glass to CO2 saturation as a function of pressure in silicate melts, suggesting pressures between 0.69 to 1.78 GPa. These values are generally higher than trapping pressures for fluid inclusions

  2. What major faults look like, and why this matters for lithospheric dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fagereng, Ake

    2016-04-01

    Earthquakes involve seconds to minutes of frictional sliding on a discontinuity, likely of sub-cm thickness, within a damage zone. Earthquakes are separated by an interseismic period of hundreds to thousands of years, during which a number of healing and weakening processes occur within the fault zone. The next earthquake occurs as shear stress exceeds frictional resistance, on the same or a different discontinuity as the previous event, embedded within the fault damage zone. After incremental damage and healing in multiple earthquake cycles, the fault zone rock assemblage evolves to a structure and composition distinctly different from the host rock(s). This presentation presents field geology evidence from a range of settings, to discuss the interplay between the earthquake cycle, long-term deformation, and lithospheric rheology. Classic fault zone models are based on continental transforms, which generally form discrete faults in the upper crust, and wide, anastomosing shear zones in the lower crust. In oceanic crust, transforms are considered frictionally weak, and appear to exploit dyke margins and joint surfaces, but also locally cross-cut these structures in anastomosing networks. In the oceanic lower crust and upper mantle, serpentinisation significantly alters fault structure. In old continental crust, previous deformation events leave a heterogeneous geology affecting active faulting. For example, the amagmatic, southern East African Rift has long been thought to exploit weak Proterozoic 'mobile belts'. However, detailed look at the Bilila-Mtakataka border fault in Malawi indicates that this fault locally exploits weak foliation in existing deformed zones, but also locally forms a new set of anastomosing fault surfaces cross-cutting existing weak foliation. In exhumed lower crust, the Antarctic Maud Belt provides an example of multiple phases of plastic deformation, where the second event is only visible in localised shear zones, likely inherited from the

  3. Subduction zone forearc serpentinites as incubators for deep microbial life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plümper, Oliver; King, Helen E.; Geisler, Thorsten; Liu, Yang; Pabst, Sonja; Savov, Ivan P.; Rost, Detlef; Zack, Thomas

    2017-04-01

    Serpentinization-fueled systems in the cool, hydrated forearc mantle of subduction zones may provide an environment that supports deep chemolithoautotrophic life. Here, we examine serpentinite clasts expelled from mud volcanoes above the Izu-Bonin-Mariana subduction zone forearc (Pacific Ocean) that contain complex organic matter and nanosized Ni-Fe alloys. Using time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry and Raman spectroscopy, we determined that the organic matter consists of a mixture of aliphatic and aromatic compounds and functional groups such as amides. Although an abiotic or subduction slab-derived fluid origin cannot be excluded, the similarities between the molecular signatures identified in the clasts and those of bacteria-derived biopolymers from other serpentinizing systems hint at the possibility of deep microbial life within the forearc. To test this hypothesis, we coupled the currently known temperature limit for life, 122 °C, with a heat conduction model that predicts a potential depth limit for life within the forearc at ˜10,000 m below the seafloor. This is deeper than the 122 °C isotherm in known oceanic serpentinizing regions and an order of magnitude deeper than the downhole temperature at the serpentinized Atlantis Massif oceanic core complex, Mid-Atlantic Ridge. We suggest that the organic-rich serpentinites may be indicators for microbial life deep within or below the mud volcano. Thus, the hydrated forearc mantle may represent one of Earth’s largest hidden microbial ecosystems. These types of protected ecosystems may have allowed the deep biosphere to thrive, despite violent phases during Earth’s history such as the late heavy bombardment and global mass extinctions.

  4. Subduction zone forearc serpentinites as incubators for deep microbial life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plümper, Oliver; King, Helen E; Geisler, Thorsten; Liu, Yang; Pabst, Sonja; Savov, Ivan P; Rost, Detlef; Zack, Thomas

    2017-04-25

    Serpentinization-fueled systems in the cool, hydrated forearc mantle of subduction zones may provide an environment that supports deep chemolithoautotrophic life. Here, we examine serpentinite clasts expelled from mud volcanoes above the Izu-Bonin-Mariana subduction zone forearc (Pacific Ocean) that contain complex organic matter and nanosized Ni-Fe alloys. Using time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry and Raman spectroscopy, we determined that the organic matter consists of a mixture of aliphatic and aromatic compounds and functional groups such as amides. Although an abiotic or subduction slab-derived fluid origin cannot be excluded, the similarities between the molecular signatures identified in the clasts and those of bacteria-derived biopolymers from other serpentinizing systems hint at the possibility of deep microbial life within the forearc. To test this hypothesis, we coupled the currently known temperature limit for life, 122 °C, with a heat conduction model that predicts a potential depth limit for life within the forearc at ∼10,000 m below the seafloor. This is deeper than the 122 °C isotherm in known oceanic serpentinizing regions and an order of magnitude deeper than the downhole temperature at the serpentinized Atlantis Massif oceanic core complex, Mid-Atlantic Ridge. We suggest that the organic-rich serpentinites may be indicators for microbial life deep within or below the mud volcano. Thus, the hydrated forearc mantle may represent one of Earth's largest hidden microbial ecosystems. These types of protected ecosystems may have allowed the deep biosphere to thrive, despite violent phases during Earth's history such as the late heavy bombardment and global mass extinctions.

  5. The Rise of Oxygen in the Earth's Atmosphere Controlled by the Efficient Subduction of Organic Carbon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duncan, M. S.; Dasgupta, R.

    2017-12-01

    Carbon cycling between the Earth's surface environment, i.e., the ocean-atmosphere system, and the Earth's interior is critical for differentiation, redox evolution, and long-term habitability of the planet. This carbon cycle is influenced heavily by the extent of carbon subduction. While the fate of carbonates during subduction has been discussed in numerous studies [e.g., 1], little is known how organic carbon is quantitatively transferred from the Earth's surface to the interior. Efficient subduction of organic carbon would remove reduced carbon from the surface environment over the long-term (≥100s Myrs) while release at subduction zone arc volcanoes would result in degassing of CO2. Here we conducted high pressure-temperature experiments to determine the carbon carrying capacity of slab derived, rhyolitic melts under graphite-saturated conditions over a range of P (1.5-3.0 GPa) and T (1100-1400 °C) at a fixed melt H2O content (2 wt.%) [2]. Based on our experimental data, we developed a thermodynamic model of CO2 dissolution in C-saturated slab melts, that allows us to quantify the extent of organic carbon mobility as a function of slab P, T, and fO2 during subduction through time. Our experimental data and thermodynamic model suggest that the subduction of graphitized organic C, and graphite/diamond formed by reduction of carbonates with depth [e.g., 3], remained efficient even in ancient, hotter subduction zones - conditions at which subduction of carbonates likely remained limited [1]. Considering the efficiency the subduction of organic C and potential conditions for ancient subduction, we suggest that the lack of remobilization in subduction zones and deep sequestration of organic C in the mantle facilitated the rise and maintenance atmospheric oxygen in the Paleoproterozoic and is causally linked to the Great Oxidation Event (GOE). Our modeling shows that episodic subduction and organic C sequestration pre-GOE may also explain occasional whiffs of

  6. Low Seismic Attenuation in Southern New England Lithosphere Implies Little Heating by the Upwelling Asthenosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lamoureux, J. M.; Menke, W. H.

    2017-12-01

    The Northern Appalachian Anomaly (NAA) is a patch of the asthenosphere in southern New England that is unusually hot given its passive margin setting. Previous research has detected large seismic wave delays that imply a temperature of 770 deg C higher than the mantle below the adjacent craton at the same depth. A key outstanding issue is whether the NAA interacts with the lithosphere above it (e.g. by heating it up). We study this issue using Po and So waves from two magnitude >5.5 earthquakes near the Puerto Rico Trench. These waves, propagating in the cold oceanic lithosphere at near Moho speeds, deliver high frequency energy to the shallow continental lithosphere. We hypothesized that: (1) once within the continental lithosphere, Po and So experience attenuation with distance that can be quantified by a quality factor Q, and that (2) any heating of the lithosphere above the NAA would lead to a higher Q than in regions further north or south along the continental margin. Corresponding Po and So velocities would also be lower. The decay rates of Po and So are estimated using least-squares applied to RMS coda amplitudes measured from digital seismograms from stations in northeastern North America, corrected for instrument response. A roughly log-linear decrease in amplitude is observed, corresponding to P and S wave quality factors in the range of 394-1500 and 727-6847, respectively. Measurements are made for four margin-perpendicular geographical bands, with one band overlapping the NAA. We detect no effect on these amplitudes by the NAA; 95% confidence bounds overlap in every case; Furthermore, all quality factors are much higher than the 100 predicted by lab experiments for near-solidus mantle rocks. These results suggest that the NAA is not causing significant heating of the lithosphere above it. The shear velocities, however, are about 10% slower above the NAA - an effect that may be fossil, reflecting processes that occurred millions of years ago.

  7. Linking plate reconstructions with deforming lithosphere to geodynamic models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Müller, R. D.; Gurnis, M.; Flament, N.; Seton, M.; Spasojevic, S.; Williams, S.; Zahirovic, S.

    2011-12-01

    While global computational models are rapidly advancing in terms of their capabilities, there is an increasing need for assimilating observations into these models and/or ground-truthing model outputs. The open-source and platform independent GPlates software fills this gap. It was originally conceived as a tool to interactively visualize and manipulate classical rigid plate reconstructions and represent them as time-dependent topological networks of editable plate boundaries. The user can export time-dependent plate velocity meshes that can be used either to define initial surface boundary conditions for geodynamic models or alternatively impose plate motions throughout a geodynamic model run. However, tectonic plates are not rigid, and neglecting plate deformation, especially that of the edges of overriding plates, can result in significant misplacing of plate boundaries through time. A new, substantially re-engineered version of GPlates is now being developed that allows an embedding of deforming plates into topological plate boundary networks. We use geophysical and geological data to define the limit between rigid and deforming areas, and the deformation history of non-rigid blocks. The velocity field predicted by these reconstructions can then be used as a time-dependent surface boundary condition in regional or global 3-D geodynamic models, or alternatively as an initial boundary condition for a particular plate configuration at a given time. For time-dependent models with imposed plate motions (e.g. using CitcomS) we incorporate the continental lithosphere by embedding compositionally distinct crust and continental lithosphere within the thermal lithosphere. We define three isostatic columns of different thickness and buoyancy based on the tectonothermal age of the continents: Archean, Proterozoic and Phanerozoic. In the fourth isostatic column, the oceans, the thickness of the thermal lithosphere is assimilated using a half-space cooling model. We also

  8. Water Content in the SW USA Mantle Lithosphere: FTIR Analysis of Dish Hill and Kilbourne Hole Pyroxenites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibler, Robert; Peslier, Anne H.; Schaffer, Lillian Aurora; Brandon, Alan D.

    2014-01-01

    Kilbourne Hole (NM, USA) and Dish Hill (CA, USA) mantle xenoliths sample continental mantle in two different tectonic settings. Kilbourne Hole (KH) is located in the Rio Grande rift. Dish Hill (DH) is located in the southern Mojave province, an area potentially affected by subduction of the Farallon plate beneath North America. FTIR analyses were obtained on well characterized pyroxenite, dunite and wehrlite xenoliths, thought to represent crystallized melts at mantle depths. PUM normalized REE patterns of the KH bulk-rocks are slightly LREE enriched and consistent with those of liquids generated by 6% melting of a spinel peridotite source. Pyroxenite pyroxenes have no detectable water but one DH wehrlite, which bulk-rock is LREE enriched, has 4 ppm H2O in orthopyroxene and 2 Ga. The Farallon subduction appears to have enriched in water the southwestern United States lithospheric mantle further east than DH, beneath the Colorado plateau.

  9. Structure of the Lithosphere-Asthenosphere Boundary Onshore and Offshore the California Continental Margin from Three-Dimensional Seismic Anisotropy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gomez, C. D.; Escobar, L., Sr.; Rathnayaka, S.; Weeraratne, D. S.; Kohler, M. D.

    2016-12-01

    The California continental margin, a major transform plate boundary in continental North America, is the locus of complex tectonic stress fields that are important in interpreting both remnant and ongoing deformational strain. Ancient subduction of the East Pacific Rise spreading center, the rotation and translation of tectonic blocks and inception of the San Andreas fault all contribute to the dynamic stress fields located both onshore and offshore southern California. Data obtained by the ALBACORE (Asthenospheric and Lithospheric Broadband Architecture from the California Offshore Region Experiment) and the CISN (California Integrated Seismic Network) seismic array are analyzed for azimuthal anisotropy of Rayleigh waves from 80 teleseismic events at periods 16 - 78 s. Here we invert Rayleigh wave data for shear wave velocity structure and three-dimensional seismic anisotropy in the thee regions designated within the continental margin including the continent, seafloor and California Borderlands. Preliminary results show that seismic anisotropy is resolved in multiple layers and can be used to determine the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB) in offshore and continental regions. The oldest seafloor in our study at age 25-35 Ma indicates that the anisotropic transition across the LAB occurs at 73 km +/- 25 km with the lithospheric fast direction oriented WNW-ESE, consistent with current Pacific plate motion direction. The continent region west of the San Andreas indicates similar WNW-ESE anisotropy and LAB depth. Regions east of the San Andreas fault indicate NW-SE anisotropy transitioning to a N-S alignment at 80 km depth north of the Garlock fault. The youngest seafloor (15 - 25 Ma) and outer Borderlands indicate a more complex three layer fabric where shallow lithospheric NE-SW fast directions are perpendicular with ancient Farallon subduction arc, a mid-layer with E-W fast directions are perpendicular to remnant fossil fabric, and the deepest layer

  10. Why Archaean TTG cannot be generated by MORB melting in subduction zones

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Hervé; Moyen, Jean-François; Guitreau, Martin; Blichert-Toft, Janne; Le Pennec, Jean-Luc

    2014-06-01

    Until recently it was assumed that the Archaean continental crust (made of TTGs: tonalites, trondhjemites, and granodiorites) was generated through partial melting of MORB-like basalts in hot subduction environments, where the subducted oceanic crust melted at high pressure, leaving a garnet-bearing amphibolitic or eclogitic residue. However, recent geochemical models as well as basalt melting experiments have precluded MORB as a plausible source for TTGs. Rather, geochemical and experimental evidences indicate that formation of TTG required a LILE-enriched source, similar to oceanic plateau basalts. Moreover, subduction is a continuous process, while continental growth is episodic. Several “super-growth events” have been identified at ~ 4.2, ~ 3.8, ~ 3.2, ~ 2.7, ~ 1.8, ~ 1.1, and ~ 0.5 Ga, which is inconsistent with the regular pattern that would be expected from a subduction-driven process. In order to account for this periodicity, it has been proposed that, as subduction proceeds, descending residual slabs accumulate at the 660-km seismic discontinuity. When stored oceanic crust exceeds a certain mass threshold, it rapidly sinks into the mantle as a cold avalanche, which induces the ascent of mantle plumes that in turn produce large amounts of magmas resulting in oceanic plateaus. However, melting at the base of thick oceanic plateaus does not appear to be a realistic process that can account for TTG genesis. Modern oceanic plateaus contain only small volumes (≤ 5%) of felsic magmas generally formed by high degrees of fractional crystallization of basaltic magmas. The composition of these felsic magmas drastically differs from that of TTGs. In Iceland, the interaction between a mantle plume and the mid-Atlantic ridge gives rise to an anomalously (Archaean-like) high geothermal gradient resulting in thick basaltic crust able to melt at shallow depth. Even in this favorable context though, the characteristic Archaean TTG trace element signature is not being

  11. Geochemistry of subduction zone serpentinites: A review

    OpenAIRE

    DESCHAMPS, Fabien; GODARD, Marguerite; GUILLOT, Stéphane; HATTORI, Kéiko

    2013-01-01

    Over the last decades, numerous studies have emphasized the role of serpentinites in the subduction zone geodynamics. Their presence and role in subduction environments are recognized through geophysical, geochemical and field observations of modern and ancient subduction zones and large amounts of geochemical database of serpentinites have been created. Here, we present a review of the geochemistry of serpentinites, based on the compilation of ~ 900 geochemical data of abyssal, mantle wedge ...

  12. Oppositely directed pairs of propagating rifts in back-arc basins: Double saloon door seafloor spreading during subduction rollback

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, A. K.

    2006-06-01

    When a continent breaks up into two plates, which then separate from each other about a rotation pole, it can be shown that if initial movement is taken up by lithospheric extension, asthenospheric breakthrough and oceanic accretion propagate toward the pole of rotation. Such a propagating rift model is then applied to an embryonic centrally located rift which evolves into two rifts propagating in opposite directions. The resultant rhombic shape of the modeled basin, initially underlain entirely by thinned continental crust, is very similar to the Oligocene to Burdigalian back-arc evolution of the Valencia Trough and the Liguro-Provencal Basin in the western Mediterranean. Existing well and seismic stratigraphic data confirm that a rift did initiate in the Gulf of Lion and propagated southwest into the Valencia Trough. Similarly, seismic refraction, gravity, and heat flow data demonstrate that maximum extension within the Valencia Trough/Liguro-Provencal Basin occurred in an axial position close to the North Balearic Fracture Zone. The same model of oppositely propagating rifts, when applied to the Burdigalian/Langhian episode of back-arc oceanic accretion within the Liguro-Provencal and Algerian basins, predicts a number of features which are borne out by existing geological and geophysical, particularly magnetic data. These include the orientation of subparallel magnetic anomalies, presumed to be seafloor spreading isochrons, in both basins; concave-to-the-west fracture zones southwest of the North Balearic Fracture Zone, and concave-to-the-east fracture zones to its northeast; a spherical triangular area of NW oriented seafloor spreading isochrons southwest of Sardinia; the greater NW extension of the central (youngest?) magnetic anomaly within this triangular area, in agreement with the model-predicted northwestward propagation of a rift in this zone; successively more central (younger) magnetic anomalies abutting thinned continental crust nearer to the pole of

  13. Oxygen isotopes in garnet and accessory minerals to constrain fluids in subducted crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rubatto, Daniela; Gauthiez-Putallaz, Laure; Regis, Daniele; Rosa Scicchitano, Maria; Vho, Alice; Williams, Morgan

    2017-04-01

    Fluids are considered a fundamental agent for chemical exchanges between different rock types in the subduction system. Constraints on the sources and pathways of subduction fluids thus provide crucial information to reconstruct subduction processes. Garnet and U-Pb accessory minerals constitute some of the most robust and ubiquitous minerals in subducted crust and can preserve multiple growth zones that track the metamorphic evolution of the sample they are hosted in. Microbeam investigation of the chemical (major and trace elements) and isotopic composition (oxygen and U-Pb) of garnet and accessory minerals is used to track significant fluid-rock interaction at different stages of the subduction system. This approach requires consideration of the diffusivity of oxygen isotopes particularly in garnet, which has been investigated experimentally. The nature of the protolith and ocean floor alteration is preserved in relict accessory phases within eclogites that have been fully modified at HP conditions (e.g. Monviso and Dora Maira units in the Western Alps). Minerals in the lawsonite-blueschists of the Tavsanli zone in Turkey record pervasive fluid exchange between mafic and sedimentary blocks at the early stage of subduction. High pressure shear zones and lithological boundaries show evidence of intense fluid metasomatism at depth along discontinuities in Monviso and Corsica. In the UHP oceanic crust of the Zermatt-Saas Zone, garnet oxygen isotopes and tourmaline boron isotopes indicate multistage fluid infiltration during prograde metamorphism. Localized exchanges of aqueous fluids are also observed in the subducted continental crust of the Sesia-Lanzo Zone. In most cases analyses of distinct mineral zones enable identification of multiple pulses of fluids during the rock evolution.

  14. Mantle Noble Gas Contents Controlled by Subduction of Serpentinite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krantz, J. A.; Parman, S. W.; Kelley, S. P.; Smye, A.; Jackson, C.

    2017-12-01

    Geochemical analyses of exhumed subduction zone material1, well gases2, MORB, and OIBs3 indicate that noble gases are being recycled from the surface of the earth into the mantle. However, the path taken by these noble gases is unclear. To estimate the distribution and quantity of Ar, Kr, and Xe in subducting slabs, a model consisting of layers of sediments, altered oceanic crust (AOC), and serpentinite (hydrously altered mantle) has been developed. The noble gas contents of sediments and AOC were calculated using the least air-like and most gas-rich analyses from natural systems4,5, while serpentinite was modelled using both data from natural systems1 and experimentally determined solubilities. Layer thicknesses were assessed over a range of values: 1 to 12 km of sediments, 5 to 9 km of AOC, and 1 to 30 km of serpentinite. In all cases, the serpentinite layer contains at least an order of magnitude more Ar and Kr than the other layers. For realistic layer thicknesses (1 km of sediments, 6 km of AOC, and 3 km of serpentinite), Xe is distributed roughly equally between the three layers. By incorporating global subduction rates6, fluxes of the heavy noble gases into the mantle have been calculated as 4 · 1012 mol/Ma for 36Ar, 6 · 1011 mol/Ma for 84Kr, and 8 · 109 mol/Ma for 130Xe. These fluxes are equivalent to the total 84Kr and 130Xe contents of the depleted and bulk mantle over 1 and 10 Ma7. Similarly, the flux of 36Ar is equivalent over 1 and 100 Ma. Since the Kr and Xe have not been completely overprinted by recycling, the large majority of subducted noble gases must escape in the subduction zone. However, even the small amounts that are subducted deeper have affected the mantle as measured in both MORB and OIBs. 1. Kendrick, M.A. et al., Nature Geoscience, 4, 807-812, 2011 2. Holland, G. and Ballentine, C.J., Nature, 441, 186-191, 2006 3. Parai, R. and Mukhopadhyay, S., G3, 16, 719-735, 2015 4. Matsuda, J. and Nagao, K., Geochemical Journal, 20, 71-80, 1986

  15. Multi-stage mixing in subduction zone: Application to Merapi volcano, Indonesia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Debaille, V.; Doucelance, R.; Weis, D.; Schiano, P.

    2003-04-01

    Basalts sampling subduction zone volcanism (IAB) often show binary mixing relationship in classical Sr-Nd, Pb-Pb, Sr-Pb isotopic diagrams, generally interpreted as reflecting the involvement of two components in their source. However, several authors have highlighted the presence of minimum three components in such a geodynamical context: mantle wedge, subducted and altered oceanic crust and subducted sediments. The overlying continental crust can also contribute by contamination and assimilation in magma chambers and/or during magma ascent. Here we present a multi-stage model to obtain a two end-member mixing from three components (mantle wedge, altered oceanic crust and sediments). The first stage of the model considers the metasomatism of the mantle wedge by fluids and/or melts released by subducted materials (altered oceanic crust and associated sediments), considering mobility and partition coefficient of trace elements in hydrated fluids and silicate melts. This results in the generation of two distinct end-members, reducing the number of components (mantle wedge, oceanic crust, sediments) from three to two. The second stage of the model concerns the binary mixing of the two end-members thus defined: mantle wedge metasomatized by slab-derived fluids and mantle wedge metasomatized by sediment-derived fluids. This model has been applied on a new isotopic data set (Sr, Nd and Pb, analyzed by TIMS and MC-ICP-MS) of Merapi volcano (Java island, Indonesia). Previous studies have suggested three distinct components in the source of indonesian lavas: mantle wedge, subducted sediments and altered oceanic crust. Moreover, it has been shown that crustal contamination does not significantly affect isotopic ratios of lavas. The multi-stage model proposed here is able to reproduce the binary mixing observed in lavas of Merapi, and a set of numerical values of bulk partition coefficient is given that accounts for the genesis of lavas.

  16. Teleseismic P and S wave attenuation constraints on temperature and melt of the upper mantle in the Alaska Subduction Zone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soto Castaneda, R. A.; Abers, G. A.; Eilon, Z.; Christensen, D. H.

    2017-12-01

    Recent broadband deployments in Alaska provide an excellent opportunity to advance our understanding of the Alaska-Aleutians subduction system, with implications for subduction processes worldwide. Seismic attenuation, measured from teleseismic body waves, provides a strong constraint on thermal structure as well as an indirect indication of ground shaking expected from large intermediate-depth earthquakes. We measure P and S wave attenuation from pairwise amplitude and phase spectral ratios for teleseisms recorded at 204 Transportable Array, Alaska Regional, and Alaska Volcano Observatory, SALMON (Southern Alaska Lithosphere & Mantle Observation Network) and WVLF (Wrangell Volcanics & subducting Lithosphere Fate) stations in central Alaska. The spectral ratios are inverted in a least squares sense for differential t* (path-averaged attenuation operator) and travel time anomalies at every station. Our preliminary results indicate a zone of low attenuation across the forearc and strong attenuation beneath arc and backarc in the Cook Inlet-Kenai region where the Aleutian-Yakutat slab subducts, similar to other subduction zones. This attenuation differential is observed in both the volcanic Cook Inlet segment and amagmatic Denali segments of the Aleutian subduction zone. By comparison, preliminary results for the Wrangell-St. Elias region past the eastern edge of the Aleutian slab show strong attenuation beneath the Wrangell Volcanic Field, as well as much further south than in the Cook Inlet-Kenai region. This pattern of attenuation seems to indicate a short slab fragment in the east of the subduction zone, though the picture is complex. Results also suggest the slab may focus or transmit energy with minimal attenuation, adding to the complexity. To image the critical transition between the Alaska-Aleutian slab and the region to its east, we plan to incorporate new broadband data from the WVLF array, an ongoing deployment of 37 PASSCAL instruments installed in 2016

  17. Vizualization Challenges of a Subduction Simulation Using One Billion Markers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rudolph, M. L.; Gerya, T. V.; Yuen, D. A.

    2004-12-01

    Recent advances in supercomputing technology have permitted us to study the multiscale, multicomponent fluid dynamics of subduction zones at unprecedented resolutions down to about the length of a football field. We have performed numerical simulations using one billion tracers over a grid of about 80 thousand points in two dimensions. These runs have been performed using a thermal-chemical simulation that accounts for hydration and partial melting in the thermal, mechanical, petrological, and rheological domains. From these runs, we have observed several geophysically interesting phenomena including the development of plumes with unmixed mantle composition as well as plumes with mixed mantle/crust components. Unmixed plumes form at depths greater than 100km (5-10 km above the upper interface of subducting slab) and consist of partially molten wet peridotite. Mixed plumes form at lesser depth directly from the subducting slab and contain partially molten hydrated oceanic crust and sediments. These high resolution simulations have also spurred the development of new visualization methods. We have created a new web-based interface to data from our subduction simulation and other high-resolution 2D data that uses an hierarchical data format to achieve response times of less than one second when accessing data files on the order of 3GB. This interface, WEB-IS4, uses a Javascript and HTML frontend coupled with a C and PHP backend and allows the user to perform region of interest zooming, real-time colormap selection, and can return relevant statistics relating to the data in the region of interest.

  18. The 2010 Southern California Ocean Bottom Seismometer Deployment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Booth, C. M.; Kohler, M. D.; Weeraratne, D. S.

    2010-12-01

    Subduction, mid-ocean ridge spreading, and transpressional deformation are all processes that played important roles in the evolution of the diffuse Pacific-North America plate boundary offshore Southern California. Existing seismic data for the boundary typically end at the coastline due to the fact that onshore data collection is easier and more feasible. As a result, current models for plate boundary deformation and mantle flow lack data from nearly half the plate boundary offshore. In August 2010, twenty-four broadband and ten short period ocean bottom seismometers (OBS) were deployed on a research cruise as part of a year-long passive OBS experiment off the coast of Southern California. The Asthenospheric and Lithospheric Broadband Architecture from the California Offshore Region Experiment (ALBACORE) will study local seismicity, and crustal and upper mantle seismic structure. Studies using onshore data have shown a high velocity anomaly that exists in the region of convergence under the Transverse Ranges. The Transverse Ranges belong to a large crustal block that experienced clockwise rotation of at least ninety degrees. Geologic studies indicate that the entire Channel Islands on the western end belongs to the region of convergence and have been a part of this rotation. In anticipation of OBS data analysis, a hypothetical velocity model is being developed for the crust and uppermost mantle for the region under the Channel Islands. P-wave arrival times are predicted by propagating teleseismic waves through the model. Different possible P-wave arrival patterns are explored by varying the lithospheric thickness. The long-term goal for developing this model will be to compare it with the actual OBS travel-time residual data to assess the best-fitting model. In preparation for the ALBACORE cruise, existing gravity data near the Channel Island region were examined for correlations with geologic features. Gravity data collected during the ALBACORE cruise will help

  19. Using crustal thickness, subsidence and P-T-t history on the Iberia-Newfoundland & Alpine Tethys margins to constrain lithosphere deformation modes during continental breakup

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeanniot, L.; Kusznir, N. J.; Manatschal, G.; Mohn, G.; Beltrando, M.

    2013-12-01

    Observations at magma-poor rifted margins such as Iberia-Newfoundland show a complex lithosphere deformation history and OCT architecture, resulting in hyper-extended continental crust and lithosphere, exhumed mantle and scattered embryonic oceanic crust before continental breakup and seafloor spreading. Initiation of seafloor spreading requires both the rupture of the continental crust and lithospheric mantle, and the onset of decompressional melting. Their relative timing controls when mantle exhumation may occur; the presence or absence of exhumed mantle provides useful information on the timing of these events and constraints on lithosphere deformation modes. A single kinematic lithosphere deformation mode leading to continental breakup and sea-floor spreading cannot explain observations. We have determined the sequence of lithosphere deformation events, using forward modelling of crustal thickness, subsidence and P-T-t history calibrated against observations on the present-day Iberia-Newfoundland and the fossil analogue Alpine Tethys margins. Lithosphere deformation modes, represented by flow fields, are generated by a 2D finite element viscous flow model (FeMargin), and used to advect lithosphere and asthenosphere temperature and material. FeMargin is kinematically driven by divergent deformation in the topmost upper lithosphere inducing passive upwelling beneath that layer; the upper lithosphere is assumed to deform by extensional faulting and magmatic intrusions, consistent with observations of deformation processes occurring at slow spreading ocean ridges (Cannat, 1996). Buoyancy enhanced upwelling is also included in the kinematic model as predicted by Braun et al (2000). We predict melt generation by decompressional melting using the parameterization and methodology of Katz et al., 2003. We use a series of numerical experiments, tested and calibrated against crustal thicknesses and subsidence observations, to determine the distribution of lithosphere

  20. Three-Dimensional Rheological Structure of North China Craton Determined by Integration of Multiple observations: Controlling Role for Lithospheric Rifting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiong, X.; Shan, B.; Li, Y.

    2017-12-01

    The North China Craton (NCC) has undergone significant lithospheric rejuvenation in late Mesozoic and Cenozoic, one feature of which is the widespread extension and rifting. The extension is distinct between the two parts of NCC: widespread rifting in the eastern NCC and localized narrow rifting in the west. The mechanism being responsible for this difference is uncertain and highly debated. Since lithospheric deformation can be regarded as the response of lithosphere to various dynamic actions, the rheological properties of lithosphere must have a fundamental influence on its tectonics and deformation behavior. In this study, we investigated the 3D thermal and rheological structure of NCC by developing a model integrating several geophysical observables (such as surface heatflow, regional elevation, gravity and geoid anomalies, and seismic tomography models). The results exhibit obvious lateral variation in rheological structure between the eastern and western NCC. The overall lithospheric strength is higher in the western NCC than in the east. Despite of such difference in rheology, both parts of NCC are characterized by mantle dominated strength regime, which facilitates the development of narrow rifting. Using ancient heatflow derived from mantle xenoliths studies, and taking the subduction-related dehydration reactions during Mesozoic into account, we constructed the thermal and rheological structure of NCC in Ordovician, early Cretaceous and early Cenozoic. Combining the evidence from numerical simulations, we proposed an evolution path of the rifting in NCC. The lithosphere of NCC in Ordovician was characterized by a normal craton features: low geotherm, high strength and mantle dominated regime. During Jurassic and Cretaceous, the mantle lithosphere in the eastern NCC was hydrated by fluid released by the suduction of the Pacific plate, resulting in weakening of the lithosphere and a transition from mantle dominated to crust dominated regime, which

  1. Abnormal lithium isotope composition from the ancient lithospheric mantle beneath the North China Craton.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tang, Yan-Jie; Zhang, Hong-Fu; Deloule, Etienne; Su, Ben-Xun; Ying, Ji-Feng; Santosh, M; Xiao, Yan

    2014-03-04

    Lithium elemental and isotopic compositions of olivines in peridotite xenoliths from Hebi in the North China Craton provide direct evidence for the highly variable δ(7)Li in Archean lithospheric mantle. The δ(7)Li in the cores of olivines from the Hebi high-Mg# peridotites (Fo > 91) show extreme variation from -27 to +21, in marked deviation from the δ(7)Li range of fresh MORB (+1.6 to +5.6) although the Li abundances of the olivines are within the range of normal mantle (1-2 ppm). The Li abundances and δ(7)Li characteristics of the Hebi olivines could not have been produced by recent diffusive-driven isotopic fractionation of Li and therefore the δ(7)Li in the cores of these olivines record the isotopic signature of the subcontinental lithospheric mantle. Our data demonstrate that abnormal δ(7)Li may be preserved in the ancient lithospheric mantle as observed in our study from the central North China Craton, which suggest that the subcontinental lithospheric mantle has experienced modification of fluid/melt derived from recycled oceanic crust.

  2. Delamination of lithospheric mantle evidenced by Cenozoic potassic rocks in Yunnan, SW China: A contribution to uplift of the Eastern Tibetan Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Bei; Long, Xiaoping; Wilde, Simon A.; Yuan, Chao; Wang, Qiang; Xia, Xiaoping; Zhang, Zhaofeng

    2017-07-01

    ) suggest that they were generated by partial melting of an ancient K-rich crust. The petrogenesis of the potassic intrusive rocks with their uniform Nd model ages (TDM = 968-1168 Ma) indicates that the lithospheric mantle beneath Yunnan was enriched by metasomatism related to ancient oceanic subduction. Considering the widespread and coeval nature of potassium-rich rocks in Eastern Tibet, we consider that delamination of metasomatized lithospheric mantle beneath Yunnan in the Eocene was a result of the India-Asia collision, which triggered partial melting of both the lithospheric mantle and the K-rich crust, and contributes to uplift of the Eastern Tibetan Plateau.

  3. Positive geothermal anomalies in oceanic crust of Cretaceous age offshore Kamchatka

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Delisle

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Heat flow measurements were carried out in 2009 offshore Kamchatka during the German-Russian joint-expedition KALMAR. An area with elevated heat flow in oceanic crust of Cretaceous age – detected ~30 yr ago in the course of several Russian heat flow surveys – was revisited. One previous interpretation postulated anomalous lithospheric conditions or a connection between a postulated mantle plume at great depth (>200 km as the source for the observed high heat flow. However, the positive heat flow anomaly – as our bathymetric data show – is closely associated with the fragmentation of the western flank of the Meiji Seamount into a horst and graben structure initiated during descent of the oceanic crust into the subduction zone offshore Kamchatka. This paper offers an alternative interpretation, which connects high heat flow primarily with natural convection of fluids in the fragmented rock mass and, as a potential additional factor, high rates of erosion, for which evidence is available from our collected bathymetric image. Given high erosion rates, warm rock material at depth rises to nearer the sea floor, where it cools and causes temporary elevated heat flow.

  4. The lithospheric mantle below southern West Greenland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sand, Karina Krarup; Waight, Tod Earle; Pearson, D. Graham

    2009-01-01

    Geothermobarometry of primarily garnet lherzolitic xenoliths from several localities in southern West Greenland is applied to address the diamond potential, pressure and temperature distribution and the stratigraphy of the subcontinental lithospheric mantle ~600 Ma ago. The samples are from kimbe...... into the reworked Archean North of the Naqssugtoqidian deformation front....

  5. The continental lithosphere: a geochemical perspective

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hawkesworth, C.J.; Person, G.; Turner, S.P.; Calsteren, P. Van; Gallagher, K.

    1993-01-01

    The lithosphere is the cool strong outler layer of the Earth that is effectively a boundary layer to the convecting interior. The evidence from mantle xenoliths and continental basalts is that the lower continental crust and uppermost mantle are different beneath Archaen and proterozoic areas. Mantle xenoliths from Archaen terrains, principally the Kaapvaal craton in southern Africa, are significantly depleted in Fe and other major elements which are concentrated in basalts. Nd and Os isotope data on inclusions in diamonds and peridoties respectively, indicate that such mantle is as old as the overlying Archaen crust. Since it appears to have been coupled to the overlying crust, and to have been isolated from the homogenising effects of convection for long periods of time, it is inferred to be within the continental lithosphere. The mantle lithosphere beneath Proterozoic and younger areas is less depleted in major elements, and so it is more fertile, less buoyant, and therefore thinner, than the Archaen mantle lithosphere. (author). 136 refs, 14 figs

  6. Lithosphere/asthenosphere interaction during continental breakup: preliminary isotopic date on the passive Galicia margin (North-Atlantic)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Charpentier, S.; Kornprobst, J.; Chazot, G.; Cornen, G.

    1998-01-01

    The Galicia Margin ultramafic ridge has been cross-cut by diorites, pyroxenites and gabbros before the end of the rifting stage, and then by dolerites, after the continental break-full; it has been further overlaid by basaltic lava flows. The younger the rocks, the higher the initial ξ Nd (2.2-8.8). This evolution would be the result of the contamination of liquids extracted from the asthenosphere, by the enriched (ξ Ndi =4.0) and partially melted previous continental lithosphere. Time-decreasing contamination is related to progressive lithospheric thinning from the end to the beginning of oceanic spreading. (authors)

  7. Carbonate metasomatism and CO2 lithosphere-asthenosphere degassing beneath the western Mediterranean: An integrated model arising from petrological and geophysical data

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Frezzotti, Maria Luce; Peccerillo, Angelo; Panza, Giuliano

    2009-03-01

    We present an integrated petrological, geochemical, and geophysical model that offers an explanation for the present-day anomalously high non-volcanic deep (mantle derived) CO 2 emission in the Tyrrhenian region. We investigate how decarbonation or melting of carbonate-rich lithologies from a subducted lithosphere may affect the efficiency of carbon release in the lithosphere-asthenosphere system. We propose that melting of sediments and/or continental crust of the subducted Adriatic-Ionian (African) lithosphere at pressure greater than 4 GPa (130 km) may represent an efficient mean for carbon cycling into the upper mantle and into the exosphere in the Western Mediterranean area. Melting of carbonated lithologies, induced by the progressive rise of mantle temperatures behind the eastward retreating Adriatic-Ionian subducting plate, generates low fractions of carbonate-rich (hydrous-silicate) melts. Due to their low density and viscosity, such melts can migrate upward through the mantle, forming a carbonated partially molten CO 2 -rich mantle recorded by tomographic images in the depth range from 130 to 60 km. Upwelling in the mantle of carbonate-rich melts to depths less than 60 - 70 km, induces massive outgassing of CO 2 . Buoyancy forces, probably favored by fluid overpressures, are able to allow migration of CO 2 from the mantle to the surface, through deep lithospheric faults, and its accumulation beneath the Moho and within the lower crust. The present model may also explain CO 2 enrichment of the Etna active volcano. Deep CO 2 cycling is tentatively quantified in terms of conservative carbon mantle flux in the investigated area. (author)

  8. Antarctic Lithosphere Studies: Progress, Problems and Promise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalziel, I. W. D.; Wilson, T. J.

    2017-12-01

    In the sixty years since the International Geophysical Year, studies of the Antarctic lithosphere have progressed from basic geological observations and sparse geophysical measurements to continental-scale datasets of radiometric dates, ice thickness, bedrock topography and characteristics, seismic imaging and potential fields. These have been augmented by data from increasingly dense broadband seismic and geodetic networks. The Antarctic lithosphere is known to have been an integral part, indeed a "keystone" of the Pangea ( 250-185Ma) and Gondwanaland ( 540-180 Ma) supercontinents. It is widely believed to have been part of hypothetical earlier supercontinents Rodinia ( 1.0-0.75 Ga) and Columbia (Nuna) ( 2.0-1.5 Ga). Despite the paucity of exposure in East Antarctica, the new potential field datasets have emboldened workers to extrapolate Precambrian geological provinces and structures from neighboring continents into Antarctica. Hence models of the configuration of Columbia and its evolution into Rodinia and Gondwana have been proposed, and rift-flank uplift superimposed on a Proterozoic orogenic root has been hypothesized to explain the Gamburtsev Subglacial Mountains. Mesozoic-Cenozoic rifting has imparted a strong imprint on the West Antarctic lithosphere. Seismic tomographic evidence reveals lateral variation in lithospheric thickness, with the thinnest zones within the West Antarctic rift system and underlying the Amundsen Sea Embayment. Upper mantle low velocity zones are extensive, with a deeper mantle velocity anomaly underlying Marie Byrd Land marking a possible mantle plume. Misfits between crustal motions measured by GPS and GIA model predictions can, in part, be linked with the changes in lithosphere thickness and mantle rheology. Unusually high uplift rates measured by GPS in the Amundsen region can be interpreted as the response of regions with thin lithosphere and weak mantle to late Holocene ice mass loss. Horizontal displacements across the TAM

  9. Lithospheric Structure across the Alaskan Cordillera from Surface Waves and Receiver Functions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ward, K. M.; Lin, F. C.

    2017-12-01

    The long awaited Transportable Array (TA) deployment in Alaska and western Canada is nearing its final deployment stage. With only one more deployment season, most of the TA station locations have been occupied and begun providing data. These TA stations combined with upgraded existing locations have provided enough high-quality data to begin investigating the crustal and upper mantle structure across the entire Alaskan Cordillera. From a tectonic standpoint, many interesting questions remain unanswered. For example, how does the transition from oceanic-oceanic subduction to continental-oceanic normal subduction to continental-oceanic "flat-slab" subduction to strike-slip conservative plate motion affect the deformation/uplift of the overriding plate and mantle geodynamic characteristics? How does the long and completed terrene accretion process partition stress/strain in the crust? On more local scales, are there any significant mid-crustal magmatic systems as observed in other sections of the American Cordillera, and if so, what is there role in uplift and crustal deformation? Our approach to investigating these questions is though surface wave imaging from ambient noise and earthquake generated sources along with Rayleigh wave ellipticity paired with Ps receiver functions. Our preliminary tomography results agree with previous studies but expand the spatial coverage showing additional detail. Our ellipticity results show a heterogeneous but spatially consistent anisotropic shallow crust. Although the complete TA data set has not yet been collected, we have jointly inverted surface waves with receiver functions for a 3-D shear-wave velocity model across the entire Alaskan Cordillera. Key features of our velocity model include a high-velocity feature in the upper mantle associated with the subducting Pacific plate that extends north of the seismicity used to contour the geometry of the slab and mid-crustal low-velocity zones associated with the active volcanics in

  10. How weak is the subduction zone interface?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Duarte, João C.; Schellart, Wouter P.; Cruden, Alexander R.

    2015-01-01

    Several lines of evidence suggest that subduction zones are weak and that the unique availability of water on Earth is a critical factor in the weakening process. We have evaluated the strength of subduction zone interfaces using two approaches: (i) from empirical relationships between shear stress

  11. Estimating lithospheric properties at Atla Regio, Venus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, Roger J.

    1994-01-01

    Magellan spehrical harmonic gravity and topography models are used to estimate lithospheric properties at Alta Regio, Venus, a proposed hotspot with dynamic support from mantle plume(s). Global spherical harmonic and local representations of the gravity field share common properties in the Atla region interms of their spectral behavior over a wavelength band from approximately 2100 to approximately 700 km. The estimated free-air admittance spectrum displays a rather featureless long-wavelength portion followed by a sharp rise at wavelengths shorter than about 1000 km. This sharp rise requires significant flexural support of short-wavelength structures. The Bouguer coherence also displays a sharp drop in this wavelength band, indicating a finite flexural rigidity of the lithosphere. A simple model for lithospheric loading from above and below is introduced (D. W. Forsyth, 1985) with four parameters: f, the ratio of bottom loading to top loading; z(sub m), crustal thickness; z(sub l) depth to bottom loading source; and T(sub e) elastic lithosphere thickness. A dual-mode compensation model is introduced in which the shorter wavelengths (lambda approximately less than 1000 km) might be explained best by a predominance of top loading by the large shield volcanoes Maat Mons, Ozza Mons, and Sapas Mons, and the longer wavelengths (lambda approximately greater than 1500 km) might be explained best by a deep depth of compensation, possibly representing bottom loading by a dynamic source. A Monte Carlo inversion technique is introduced to thoroughly search out the four-space of the model parameters and to examine parameter correlation in the solutions. Venus either is a considerabe deficient in heat sources relative to Earth, or the thermal lithosphere is overthickened in response to an earlier episode of significant heat loss from the planet.

  12. Ejecta from Ocean Impacts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kyte, Frank T.

    2003-01-01

    Numerical simulations of deep-ocean impact provide some limits on the size of a projectile that will not mix with the ocean floor during a deep-ocean impact. For a vertical impact at asteroidal velocities (approx. 20 km/s), mixing is only likely when the projectile diameter is greater than 112 of the water depth. For oblique impacts, even larger projectiles will not mix with ocean floor silicates. Given the typical water depths of 4 to 5 km in deep-ocean basins, asteroidal projectiles with diameters as large as 2 or 3 km may commonly produce silicate ejecta that is composed only of meteoritic materials and seawater salts. However, the compressed water column beneath the projectile can still disrupt and shock metamorphose the ocean floor. Therefore, production of a separate, terrestrial ejecta component is not ruled out in the most extreme case. With increasing projectile size (or energy) relative to water depths, there must be a gradation between oceanic impacts and more conventional continental impacts. Given that 60% of the Earth's surface is covered by oceanic lithosphere and 500 m projectiles impact the Earth on 10(exp 5) y timescales, there must be hundreds of oceanic impact deposits in the sediment record awaiting discovery.

  13. Formation of ridges in a stable lithosphere in mantle convection models with a viscoplastic rheology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rozel, A; Golabek, G J; Näf, R; Tackley, P J

    2015-06-28

    Numerical simulations of mantle convection with a viscoplastic rheology usually display mobile, episodic or stagnant lid regimes. In this study, we report a new convective regime in which a ridge can form without destabilizing the surrounding lithosphere or forming subduction zones. Using simulations in 2-D spherical annulus geometry, we show that a depth-dependent yield stress is sufficient to reach this ridge only regime. This regime occurs when the friction coefficient is close to the critical value between mobile lid and stagnant lid regimes. Maps of convective regime as a function of the parameters friction coefficients and depth dependence of viscosity are provided for both basal heating and mixed heating situations. The ridge only regime appears for both pure basal heating and mixed heating mode. For basal heating, this regime can occur for all vertical viscosity contrasts, while for mixed heating, a highly viscous deep mantle is required.

  14. Solubility of Aragonite in Subduction Water-Rich Fluids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daniel, I.; Facq, S.; Petitgirard, S.; Cardon, H.; Sverjensky, D. A.

    2017-12-01

    Carbonate dissolution in subduction zone fluids is critical to the carbon budget in subduction zones. Depending on the solubility of carbonate minerals in aqueous fluids, the subducting lithosphere may be either strongly depleted and the mantle metasomatized if the solubility is high, as recently suggested by natural samples or transport carbon deeper into the Earth's mantle if the solubility is low enough [1, 2]. Dissolution of carbonate minerals strongly depends on pressure and temperature as well as on the chemistry of the fluid, leading to a highly variable speciation of aqueous carbon. Thanks to recent advances in theoretical aqueous geochemistry [3, 4], combined experimental and theoretical efforts now allow the investigation of speciation and solubility of carbonate minerals in aqueous fluids at PT conditions higher than previously feasible [4, 5]. In this study, we present new in situ X-ray fluorescence measurements of aragonite dissolution up to 5 GPa and 500°C and the subsequent thermodynamic model of aragonite solubility in aqueous fluids thanks to the Deep Earth Water model. The amount of dissolved aragonite in the fluid was calculated from challenging and unprecedented measurements of the Ca fluorescence K-lines at low-energy. Experiments were performed at the ESRF, beamline ID27 using a dedicated design of an externally-heated diamond anvil cell and an incident high-flux and highly focused monochromatic X-Ray beam at 20 keV. The results show a spectacularly high solubility of aragonite at HP-HT in water, further enhanced in presence of NaCl and silica in the solution. [1] Frezzotti, M. L. et al. (2011) doi:10.1038/ngeo1246. [2] Ague, J. J. and Nicolescu, S. (2014) doi:10.1038/ngeo2143. [3] Pan, D. et al. (2013) doi: 10.1073/pnas.1221581110. [4] Sverjensky, D. A et al. (2014) doi: 10.1016/j.gca.2013.12.019. [5] Facq, S. et al. (2014) doi: 10.1016/j.gca.2014.01.030.

  15. Subduction to the lower mantle – a comparison between geodynamic and tomographic models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. W. Becker

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available It is generally believed that subduction of lithospheric slabs is a major contribution to thermal heterogeneity in Earth's entire mantle and provides a main driving force for mantle flow. Mantle structure can, on the one hand, be inferred from plate tectonic models of subduction history and geodynamic models of mantle flow. On the other hand, seismic tomography models provide important information on mantle heterogeneity. Yet, the two kinds of models are only similar on the largest (1000 s of km scales and are quite different in their detailed structure. Here, we provide a quantitative assessment how good a fit can be currently achieved with a simple viscous flow geodynamic model. The discrepancy between geodynamic and tomography models can indicate where further model refinement could possibly yield an improved fit. Our geodynamical model is based on 300 Myr of subduction history inferred from a global plate reconstruction. Density anomalies are inserted into the upper mantle beneath subduction zones, and flow and advection of these anomalies is calculated with a spherical harmonic code for a radial viscosity structure constrained by mineral physics and surface observations. Model viscosities in the upper mantle beneath the lithosphere are ~1020 Pas, and viscosity increases to ~1023 Pas in the lower mantle above D". Comparison with tomography models is assessed in terms of correlation, both overall and as a function of depth and spherical harmonic degree. We find that, compared to previous geodynamic and tomography models, correlation is improved, presumably because of advances in both plate reconstructions and mantle flow computations. However, high correlation is still limited to lowest spherical harmonic degrees. An important ingredient to achieve high correlation – in particular at spherical harmonic degree two – is a basal chemical layer. Subduction shapes this layer into two rather stable hot but chemically dense "piles

  16. The thermal effects of steady-state slab-driven mantle flow above a subducting plate: the Cascadia subduction zone and backarc

    Science.gov (United States)

    Currie, C. A.; Wang, K.; Hyndman, Roy D.; He, Jiangheng

    2004-06-01

    At subduction zones, geophysical and geochemical observations indicate that the arc and backarc regions are hot, in spite of the cooling effects of a subducting plate. At the well-studied Cascadia subduction zone, high mantle temperatures persist for over 500 km into the backarc, with little lateral variation. These high temperatures are even more surprising due to the juxtaposition of the hot Cascadia backarc against the thick, cold North America craton lithosphere. Given that local heat sources appear to be negligible, mantle flow is required to transport heat into the wedge and backarc. We have examined the thermal effects of mantle flow induced by traction along the top of the subducting plate. Through systematic tests of the backarc model boundary, we have shown that the model thermal structure of the wedge is primarily determined by the assumed temperatures along this boundary. To get high temperatures in the wedge, it is necessary for flow to mine heat from depth, either by using a temperature-dependent rheology, or by introducing a deep cold boundary through a thick adjacent lithosphere, consistent with the presence of a craton. Regardless of the thermal conditions along the backarc boundary, flow within an isoviscous wedge is too slow to transport a significant amount of heat into the wedge corner. With a more realistic stress- and temperature-dependent wedge rheology, flow is focused into the wedge corner, resulting in rapid flow upward toward the corner and enhanced temperatures below the arc, compatible with temperatures required for arc magma generation. However, this strong flow focusing produces a nearly stagnant region further landward in the shallow backarc mantle, where model temperatures and heat flow are much lower than observed. Observations of high backarc temperatures, particularly in areas that have not undergone recent extension, provide an important constraint on wedge dynamics. None of the models of simple traction-driven flow were able

  17. Continental Subduction: Mass Fluxes and Interactions with the Wider Earth System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuthbert, S. J.

    2011-12-01

    Substantial parts of ultra-high pressure (UHP) terrains probably represent subducted passive continental margins (PCM). This contribution reviews and synthesises research on processes operating in such systems and their implication for the wider Earth system. PCM sediments are large repositories of volatiles including hydrates, nitrogen species, carbonates and hydrocarbons. Sediments and upper/ mid-crustal basement are rich in incompatible elements and are fertile for melting. Lower crust may be more mafic and refractory. Juvenile rift-related mafic rocks also have the potential to generate substantial volumes of granitoid melts, especially if they have been hydrated. Exposed UHP terrains demonstrate the return of continental crust from mantle depths, show evidence for substantial fluxes of aqueous fluid, anatexis and, in entrained orogenic peridotites, metasomatism of mantle rocks by crust- derived C-O-H fluids. However, substantial bodies of continental material may never return to the surface as coherent masses of rock, but remain sequestered in the mantle where they melt or become entrained in the deeper mantle circulation. Hence during subduction, PCM's become partitioned by a range of mechanisms. Mechanical partitioning strips away weaker sediment and middle/upper crust, which circulate back up the subduction channel, while denser, stronger transitional pro-crust and lower crust may "stall" near the base of the lithosphere or be irreversibly subducted to join the global mantle circulation. Under certain conditions sediment and upper crustal basement may reach depths for UHPM. Further partitioning takes place by anatexis, which either aids stripping and exhumation of the more melt-prone rock-masses through mechanical softening, or separates melt from residuum so that melt escapes and is accreted to the upper plate leading to "undercrusting", late-orogenic magmatism and further refinement of the crust. Melt that traverses sections of mantle will interact with

  18. The thermochemical, two-phase dynamics of subduction zones: results from new, fully coupled models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rees Jones, D. W.; Katz, R. F.; May, D.; Tian, M.; Rudge, J. F.

    2017-12-01

    Subduction zones are responsible for most of Earth's subaerial volcanism. However, previous geodynamic modelling of subduction zones has largely neglected magmatism. We previously showed that magmatism has a significant thermal impact, by advecting sensible heat into the lithosphere beneath arc volcanos [1]. Inclusion of this effect helps reconcile subduction zone models with petrological and heat flow observations. Many important questions remain, including how magma-mantle dynamics of subduction zones affects the position of arc volcanos and the character of their lavas. In this presentation, we employ a fully coupled, thermochemical, two-phase flow theory to investigate the dynamics of subduction zones. We present the first results from our new software (SubFUSc), which solves the coupled equations governing conservation of mass, momentum, energy and chemical species. The presence and migration of partial melts affect permeability and mantle viscosity (both directly and through their thermal impact); these, in turn, feed back on the magma-mantle flow. Thus our fully coupled modelling improves upon previous two-phase models that decoupled the governing equations and fixed the thermal structure [2]. To capture phase change, we use a novel, simplified model of the mantle melting in the presence of volatile species. As in the natural system, volatiles are associated with low-degree melting at temperatures beneath the anhydrous solidus; dehydration reactions in the slab supply volatiles into the wedge, triggering silicic melting. We simulate the migration of melts under buoyancy forces and dynamic pressure gradients. We thereby demonstrate the dynamical controls on the pattern of subduction-zone volcanism (particularly its location, magnitude, and chemical composition). We build on our previous study of the thermal consequences of magma genesis and segregation. We address the question of what controls the location of arc volcanoes themselves [3]. [1] Rees Jones, D. W

  19. Craton stability and continental lithosphere dynamics during plume-plate interaction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, H.; Van Hunen, J.; Pearson, D.

    2013-12-01

    Survival of thick cratonic roots in a vigorously convecting mantle system for billions of years has long been studied by the geodynamical community. A high cratonic root strength is generally considered to be the most important factor. We first perform and discuss new numerical models to investigate craton stability in both Newtonian and non-Newtonian rheology in the stagnant lid regime. The results show that only a modest compositional rheological factor of Δη=10 with non-Newtonian rheology is required for the survival of cratonic roots in a stagnant lid regime. A larger rheological factor (100 or more) is needed to maintain similar craton longevity in a Newtonian rheology environment. Furthermore, chemical buoyancy plays an important role on craton stability and its evolution, but could only work with suitable compositional rheology. During their long lifespan, cratons experienced a suite of dynamic, tectonothermal events, such as nearby subduction and mantle plume activity. Cratonic nuclei are embedded in shorter-lived, more vulnerable continental areas of different thickness, composition and rheology, which would influence the lithosphere dynamic when tectonothermal events happen nearby. South Africa provides a very good example to investigate such dynamic processes as it hosts several cratons and there are many episodic thermal events since the Mesozoic as indicated by a spectrum of magmatic activity. We numerically investigate such an integrated system using the topographic evolution of cratons and surrounding lithosphere as a diagnostic observable. The post-70Ma thinning of pericratonic lithosphere by ~50km around Kaapvaal craton (Mather et al., 2011) is also investigated through our numerical models. The results show that the pericratonic lithosphere cools and grows faster than cratons do, but is also more likely to be effected by episodic thermal events. This leads to surface topography change that is significantly larger around the craton than within

  20. COMPOSITIONAL AND THERMAL DIFFERENCES BETWEEN LITHOSPHERIC AND ASTHENOSPHERIC MANTLE AND THEIR INFLUENCE ON CONTINENTAL DELAMINATION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. I. Kiselev

    2015-01-01

    . Density inversion occurs if one assumes the presence of the asthenosphereic material in the composition similar to that of the primitive mantle or lherzolite KH in amounts no less than 1.40 and 0.83 wt. %, respectively, of the conventionally neutral fluid. This amount of the fluid seems to be overestimated and thus does not fully correlate with the current estimates of the fluid content in the mantle. Therefore, the most appropriate material for delamination of the thickened lithosphere is only the fluid-bearing asthenosphere which composition corresponds to that of the depleted mantle of middle-ocean ridges (DMM being the reservoir existing from the Precambrian. In our model, abyssal peridotite is most similar to DMM as compared with other more fertile compositions of the lithosphere. Heat advection due to uplift of fluid-bearing plumes that occurred much time after collisional events may initiate repeated delamination of gravitationally instable parts of the orogenic and cratonic lithosphere

  1. Ocean Ridges and Oxygen

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langmuir, C. H.

    2014-12-01

    The history of oxygen and the fluxes and feedbacks that lead to its evolution through time remain poorly constrained. It is not clear whether oxygen has had discrete steady state levels at different times in Earth's history, or whether oxygen evolution is more progressive, with trigger points that lead to discrete changes in markers such as mass independent sulfur isotopes. Whatever this history may have been, ocean ridges play an important and poorly recognized part in the overall mass balance of oxidants and reductants that contribute to electron mass balance and the oxygen budget. One example is the current steady state O2 in the atmosphere. The carbon isotope data suggest that the fraction of carbon has increased in the Phanerozoic, and CO2 outgassing followed by organic matter burial should continually supply more O2 to the surface reservoirs. Why is O2 not then increasing? A traditional answer to this question would relate to variations in the fraction of burial of organic matter, but this fraction appears to have been relatively high throughout the Phanerozoic. Furthermore, subduction of carbon in the 1/5 organic/carbonate proportions would contribute further to an increasingly oxidized surface. What is needed is a flux of oxidized material out of the system. One solution would be a modern oxidized flux to the mantle. The current outgassing flux of CO2 is ~3.4*1012 moles per year. If 20% of that becomes stored organic carbon, that is a flux of .68*1012 moles per year of reduced carbon. The current flux of oxidized iron in subducting ocean crust is ~2*1012 moles per year of O2 equivalents, based on the Fe3+/Fe2+ ratios in old ocean crust compared to fresh basalts at the ridge axis. This flux more than accounts for the incremental oxidizing power produced by modern life. It also suggests a possible feedback through oxygenation of the ocean. A reduced deep ocean would inhibit oxidation of ocean crust, in which case there would be no subduction flux of oxidized

  2. Effect of the lithospheric thermal state on the Moho interface: A case study in South America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bagherbandi, Mohammad; Bai, Yongliang; Sjöberg, Lars E.; Tenzer, Robert; Abrehdary, Majid; Miranda, Silvia; Alcacer Sanchez, Juan M.

    2017-07-01

    Gravimetric methods applied for Moho recovery in areas with sparse and irregular distribution of seismic data often assume only a constant crustal density. Results of latest studies, however, indicate that corrections for crustal density heterogeneities could improve the gravimetric result, especially in regions with a complex geologic/tectonic structure. Moreover, the isostatic mass balance reflects also the density structure within the lithosphere. The gravimetric methods should therefore incorporate an additional correction for the lithospheric mantle as well as deeper mantle density heterogeneities. Following this principle, we solve the Vening Meinesz-Moritz (VMM) inverse problem of isostasy constrained by seismic data to determine the Moho depth of the South American tectonic plate including surrounding oceans, while taking into consideration the crustal and mantle density heterogeneities. Our numerical result confirms that contribution of sediments significantly modifies the estimation of the Moho geometry especially along the continental margins with large sediment deposits. To account for the mantle density heterogeneities we develop and apply a method in order to correct the Moho geometry for the contribution of the lithospheric thermal state (i.e., the lithospheric thermal-pressure correction). In addition, the misfit between the isostatic and seismic Moho models, attributed mainly to deep mantle density heterogeneities and other geophysical phenomena, is corrected for by applying the non-isostatic correction. The results reveal that the application of the lithospheric thermal-pressure correction improves the RMS fit of the VMM gravimetric Moho solution to the CRUST1.0 (improves ∼ 1.9 km) and GEMMA (∼1.1 km) models and the point-wise seismic data (∼0.7 km) in South America.

  3. Lithospheric flexure beneath the Freyja Montes Foredeep, Venus: Constraints on lithospheric thermal gradient and heat flow

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Solomon, S.C.; Head, J.W.

    1990-01-01

    Analysis of Venera 15 and 16 radar images and topographic data from the Freyja Montes region on Venus suggest that this mountain belt formed as a result of a sequence of underthrusts of the lithosphere of the North Polar Plains beneath the highlands of Ishtar Terra. The Freyja Montes deformation zone consists, south to north, of a linear orogenic belt, an adjacent plateau, a steep scarp separating the plateau from the North Polar Plains, a linear depression at the base of the scarp, and an outer rise. The topographic profile of the depression and outer rise are remarkably similar to that of a foreland deep and rise formed by the flexure of the underthrusting plate beneath a terrestrial mountain range. The authors test the lithospheric flexure hypothesis and they estimate the effective thickness T e of the elastic lithosphere of the underthrusting portion of the North Polar Plains by fitting individual topographic profiles to deflection curves for a broken elastic plate. The theoretical curves fit the observed topographic profiles to within measurement error for values of flexural rigidity D in the range (0.8-3) x 10 22 N m, equivalent to T e in the range 11-18 km. Under the assumption that the base of the mechanical lithosphere is limited by the creep strength of olivine, the mean lithospheric thermal gradient is 14-23 K/km. That the inferred thermal gradient is similar to the value expected for the global mean gradient on the basis of scaling from Earth provides support for the hypothesis that simple conduction dominates lithospheric heat transport on Venus relative to lithospheric recycling and volcanism

  4. Does the "mantle" helium signature provide useful information about lithospheric architecture of Tibet/Himalaya?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klemperer, S. L.; Liu, T.; Hilton, D. R.; Karlstrom, K. E.; Crossey, L. J.; Zhao, P.

    2015-12-01

    Measurements of 3He/4He > 0.1*Ra (where Ra = 3He/4He in Earth's atmosphere) in geothermal fluids are conventionally taken to represent derivation from a mantle source. 3He/4He values 0.1*Ra may still be argued to result from mantle-derived 3He previously stored in the crust. However, our growing regional database of widely spaced observations of 3He/4He > 0.1*Ra, from the Karakoram Fault in the west to the Sangri-Cona rift and Yalaxiangbo Dome in the east, and from south of the Yarlung-Zangbo suture (YZS) to north of the Banggong-Nujiang suture, makes such special pleading increasingly implausible. The observation of 3He/4He > 0.1*Ra at the YZS and even within the Tethyan Himalaya south of the YZS cannot represent melting of Indian mantle close to the Moho unless existing thermal models are grossly in error. The source of 3He close to the YZS is likely either asthenosphere accessed by faults and shear zones that cut through subducting Indian lithospheric mantle; or incipient melt of Asian lithospheric mantle at the Moho north of the northern edge of underthrust India (the "mantle suture") which must therefore lie close to the YZS. Thus far we have barely tapped the rich potential that helium-isotope data offer for understanding transit of mantle volatiles through some of Earth's thickest (and ductilely flowing) crust.

  5. Lithospheric expression of geological units in central and eastern North America from full waveform tomography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Huaiyu; French, Scott; Cupillard, Paul; Romanowicz, Barbara

    2014-09-01

    The EarthScope TA deployment has provided dense array coverage throughout the continental US and with it, the opportunity for high resolution 3D seismic velocity imaging of both lithosphere and asthenosphere in the continent. Building upon our previous long-period waveform tomographic modeling in North America, we present a higher resolution 3D isotropic and radially anisotropic shear wave velocity model of the North American lithospheric mantle, constructed tomographically using the spectral element method for wavefield computations and waveform data down to 40 s period. The new model exhibits pronounced spatial correlation between lateral variations in seismic velocity and anisotropy and major tectonic units as defined from surface geology. In the center of the continent, the North American craton exhibits uniformly thick lithosphere down to 200-250 km, while major tectonic sutures of Proterozoic age visible in the surface geology extend down to 100-150 km as relatively narrow zones of distinct radial anisotropy, with Vsv >Vsh. Notably, the upper mantle low velocity zone is present everywhere under the craton between 200 and 300 km depth. East of the continental rift margin, the lithosphere is broken up into a series of large, somewhat thinner (150 km) high velocity blocks, which extend laterally 200-300 km offshore into the Atlantic Ocean. Between the craton and these deep-rooted blocks, we find a prominent narrow band of low velocities that roughly follows the southern and eastern Laurentia rift margin and extends into New England. We suggest that the lithosphere along this band of low velocities may be thinned due to the combined effects of repeated rifting processes and northward extension of the hotspot related Bermuda low-velocity channel across the New England region. We propose that the deep rooted high velocity blocks east of the Laurentia margin represent the Proterozoic Gondwanian terranes of pan-African affinity, which were captured during the Rodinia

  6. Trace element characteristics of mafic and ultramafic meta-igneous rocks from the 3.5 Ga. Warrawoona group: evidence for plume-lithosphere interaction beneath Archaean continental crust

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bolhar, R.; Hergt, J.; Woodhead, J.

    1999-01-01

    Full text: Magnesian- to Fe-rich tholeiitic basalts represent the dominant lithology in the Marble Bar Greenstone Belt, E-Pilbara Craton, and are locally associated with komatiitic basalts and rare komatiitic cumulates. Based on trace element characteristics, the extrusive and intrusive rocks from all three major stratigraphic units can be subdivided into LREE enriched and unfractionated to weakly LREE depleted groups. The former group is characterized by La/Sm pm = 1.7-4.6, Gd/Yb pm = 1.23.2 and Nb/Th pm 0.1-0.5, while the latter rocks possess ratios of La/Sm pm = 0.5-1.7, Gd/Yb pm = 0.8-1.9 and Nb/Th pm = 0.4-1.3. Nb/La -Nb/Th relationships in the LREE enriched samples indicate 7-28% contamination by crustal material similar in composition to Pilbara granitoids. LREE enrichment and strong negative HFSE anomalies, along with MgO = 2.2-22.0 wt% and SiO 2 = 39.2-63.5 wt%, have been observed in numerous Archaean greenstone belts, and can be successfully modeled in this study by AFC processes. In contrast, strong HFSE depletion combined with unfractionated to slightly depleted LREE in rocks of the latter group require different processes. Melting of mantle material previously depleted by melt extraction, enrichment of LILE and LREE relative to the HFSE in an arc-like environment and HFSE fractionation as a result of garnet retention in the melting source cannot account for negative Nb, Ta, Ti, P and strong positive Pb anomalies. Introduction of small amounts of crustal material into a depleted or primitive mantle, as possibly indicated by Nb/Ta ratios between 12 and 18, also fails to reproduce the trace element abundances of the second group of rocks. Recycling of oceanic crust previously processed through a subduction zone (low Th/Nb, La/Nb) and sub-arc lithospheric mantle (high Th/Nb, La/Nb), and subsequent mixing into the Archaean mantle has been recently invoked by several workers (e.g. Kerrich et al., EPSL, 168, 101-115; 1999) to explain the origin of

  7. Thermal classification of lithospheric discontinuities beneath USArray

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansen, Steven M.; Dueker, Ken; Schmandt, Brandon

    2015-12-01

    Broadband seismic data from the United States were processed into Ps and Sp receiver function image volumes for the purpose of constraining negative velocity gradients (NVG) at depths between the Moho and 200 km. Moho depth picks from the two independent datasets are in good agreement, however, large discrepancies in NVG picks occur and are attributed to free-surface multiples which obscure deep NVG arrivals in the Ps data. From the Sp data, shallow NVG are found west of the Rockies and in the central US while deep and sporadic NVG are observed beneath the Great Plains and northern Rockies. To aid the interpretation of the observed NVG arrivals, the mantle thermal field is estimated by mapping surface wave tomography velocities to temperature assuming an anelastic olivine model. The distribution of temperature versus NVG depth is bi-modal and displays two distinct thermal populations that are interpreted to represent both the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary (LAB) and mid-lithosphere discontinuities (MLD). LAB arrivals occur in the western US at 60-85 km and 1200-1400 °C depth suggesting that they manifest partial melt near the base of the thermal plate. MLD arrivals primarily occur at 70-110 km depth and 700-900 °C and we hypothesize that these arrivals are caused by a low-velocity metasomatic layer containing phlogopite resulting from magma crystallization products that accumulate within long-lived thick lithosphere.

  8. Subduction and Restratification Along an Eddy Edge: The Role of Ekman Dynamics and Submesoscale Processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lucas, A.; Sengupta, D.; D'Asaro, E. A.; Nash, J. D.; Shroyer, E.; Mahadevan, A.; Tandon, A.; MacKinnon, J. A.; Pinkel, R.

    2016-02-01

    The exchange of heat between the atmosphere and ocean depends sensitively on the structure and extent of the oceanic boundary layer. Heat fluxes into and out of the ocean in turn influence atmospheric processes, and, in the northern Indian Ocean, impact the dominant regional weather pattern (the southwest Monsoon). In late 2015, measurements of the physical structure of the oceanic boundary layer were collected from a pair of research vessels and an array of autonomous assets in the Bay of Bengal as part of an India-U.S. scientific collaboration. Repeated CTD casts by a specialized shipboard system to 200m with a repeat rate of sampling acoustic current profilers, showed how on the edge of an oceanic mesoscale eddy, the interaction of the mesoscale strain field, Ekman dynamics, and nonlinear submesoscale processes acted to subduct relative saline water under a very thin layer of fresher water derived from riverine sources. Our detailed surveys of the front between the overriding thin, fresh layer, and subducting adjacent more saline water demonstrated the important of small-scale physical dynamics to frontal slumping and the resulting re-stratification processes. These processes were strongly 3-dimensional and time-dependent. Such dynamics ultimately influence air-sea interactions by creating strongly stratified and very thin oceanic boundary layers in the Bay of Bengal, and allow the development of strong, persistent subsurface temperature maxima.

  9. Imaging Lithospheric-scale Structure Beneath Northern Altiplano in Southern Peru and Northern Bolivia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, A.; Wagner, L. S.; Beck, S. L.; Zandt, G.; Long, M. D.

    2014-12-01

    The northern Altiplano plateau of southern Peru and northern Bolivia is one of the highest topographic features on the Earth, flanked by Western and Eastern Cordillera along its margin. It has strongly influenced the local and far field lithospheric deformation since the early Miocene (Masek et al., 1994). Previous studies have emphasized the importance of both the crust and upper mantle in the evolution of Altiplano plateau (McQuarrie et al., 2005). Early tomographic and receiver function studies, south of 16° S, show significant variations in the crust and upper mantle properties in both perpendicular and along strike direction of the Altiplano plateau (Dorbath et. al., 1993; Myers et al., 1998; Beck and Zandt, 2002). In order to investigate the nature of subsurface lithospheric structure below the northern Altiplano, between 15-18° S, we have determined three-dimensional seismic tomography models for Vp and Vs using P and S-wave travel time data from two recently deployed local seismic networks of CAUGHT and PULSE. We also used data from 8 stations from the PERUSE network (PERU Subduction Experiment). Our preliminary tomographic models show a complex variation in the upper mantle velocity structure with depth, northwest and southeast of lake Titicaca. We see the following trend, at ~85 km depth, northwest of lake Titicaca: low Vp and Vs beneath the Western Cordillera, high Vs beneath the Altiplano and low Vp and Vs beneath the Eastern Cordillera. This low velocity anomaly, beneath Eastern Cordillera, seems to coincide with Kimsachata, a Holocene volcano in southern Peru. At depth greater than ~85 km: we find high velocity anomaly beneath the Western Cordillera and low Vs beneath the Altiplano. This high velocity anomaly, beneath Western Cordillera, coincides with the well-located Wadati-Benioff zone seismicity and perhaps represents the subducting Nazca slab. On the southeast of lake Titicaca, in northern Bolivia, we see a consistently high velocity anomaly

  10. Effect of 3-D heterogeneous-earth on rheology inference of postseismic model following the 2012 Indian Ocean earthquake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pratama, C.; Ito, T.; Sasajima, R.; Tabei, T.; Kimata, F.; Gunawan, E.; Ohta, Y.; Yamashina, T.; Ismail, N.; Muksin, U.; Maulida, P.; Meilano, I.; Nurdin, I.; Sugiyanto, D.; Efendi, J.

    2017-12-01

    Postseismic deformation following the 2012 Indian Ocean earthquake has been modeled by several studies (Han et al. 2015, Hu et al. 2016, Masuti et al. 2016). Although each study used different method and dataset, the previous studies constructed a significant difference of earth structure. Han et al. (2015) ignored subducting slab beneath Sumatra while Masuti et al. (2016) neglect sphericity of the earth. Hu et al. (2016) incorporated elastic slab and spherical earth but used uniform rigidity in each layer of the model. As a result, Han et al. (2015) model estimated one order higher Maxwell viscosity than the Hu et al. (2016) and half order lower Kelvin viscosity than the Masuti et al. (2016) model predicted. In the present study, we conduct a quantitative analysis of each heterogeneous geometry and parameter effect on rheology inference. We develop heterogeneous three-dimensional spherical-earth finite element models. We investigate the effect of subducting slab, spherical earth, and three-dimensional earth rigidity on estimated lithosphere-asthenosphere rheology beneath the Indian Ocean. A wide range of viscosity structure from time constant rheology to time dependent rheology was chosen as previous studies have been modeled. In order to evaluate actual displacement, we compared the model to the Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) observation. We incorporate the GNSS data from previous studies and introduce new GNSS site as a part of the Indonesian Continuously Operating Reference Stations (InaCORS) located in Sumatra that has not been used in the last analysis. As a preliminary result, we obtained the effect of the spherical earth and elastic slab when we assumed burgers rheology. The model that incorporates the sphericity of the earth needs a one third order lower viscosity than the model that neglects earth curvature. The model that includes elastic slab needs half order lower viscosity than the model that excluding the elastic slab.

  11. Numerical modeling of the deformations associated with large subduction earthquakes through the seismic cycle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fleitout, L.; Trubienko, O.; Garaud, J.; Vigny, C.; Cailletaud, G.; Simons, W. J.; Satirapod, C.; Shestakov, N.

    2012-12-01

    A 3D finite element code (Zebulon-Zset) is used to model deformations through the seismic cycle in the areas surrounding the last three large subduction earthquakes: Sumatra, Japan and Chile. The mesh featuring a broad spherical shell portion with a viscoelastic asthenosphere is refined close to the subduction zones. The model is constrained by 6 years of postseismic data in Sumatra area and over a year of data for Japan and Chile plus preseismic data in the three areas. The coseismic displacements on the subduction plane are inverted from the coseismic displacements using the finite element program and provide the initial stresses. The predicted horizontal postseismic displacements depend upon the thicknesses of the elastic plate and of the low viscosity asthenosphere. Non-dimensionalized by the coseismic displacements, they present an almost uniform value between 500km and 1500km from the trench for elastic plates 80km thick. The time evolution of the velocities is function of the creep law (Maxwell, Burger or power-law creep). Moreover, the forward models predict a sizable far-field subsidence, also with a spatial distribution which varies with the geometry of the asthenosphere and lithosphere. Slip on the subduction interface does not induce such a subsidence. The observed horizontal velocities, divided by the coseismic displacement, present a similar pattern as function of time and distance from trench for the three areas, indicative of similar lithospheric and asthenospheric thicknesses and asthenospheric viscosity. This pattern cannot be fitted with power-law creep in the asthenosphere but indicates a lithosphere 60 to 90km thick and an asthenosphere of thickness of the order of 100km with a burger rheology represented by a Kelvin-Voigt element with a viscosity of 3.1018Pas and μKelvin=μelastic/3. A second Kelvin-Voigt element with very limited amplitude may explain some char