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Sample records for thick oceanic crust

  1. Predicting Sediment Thickness on Vanished Ocean Crust Since 200 Ma

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    Dutkiewicz, A.; Müller, R. D.; Wang, X.; O'Callaghan, S.; Cannon, J.; Wright, N. M.

    2017-12-01

    Tracing sedimentation through time on existing and vanished seafloor is imperative for constraining long-term eustasy and for calculating volumes of subducted deep-sea sediments that contribute to global geochemical cycles. We present regression algorithms that incorporate the age of the ocean crust and the mean distance to the nearest passive margin to predict sediment thicknesses and long-term decompacted sedimentation rates since 200 Ma. The mean sediment thickness decreases from ˜220 m at 200 Ma to a minimum of ˜140 m at 130 Ma, reflecting the replacement of old Panthalassic ocean floor with young sediment-poor mid-ocean ridges, followed by an increase to ˜365 m at present-day. This increase reflects the accumulation of sediments on ageing abyssal plains proximal to passive margins, coupled with a decrease in the mean distance of any parcel of ocean crust to the nearest passive margin by over 700 km, and a doubling of the total passive margin length at present-day. Mean long-term sedimentation rates increase from ˜0.5 cm/ky at 160 Ma to over 0.8 cm/ky today, caused by enhanced terrigenous sediment influx along lengthened passive margins, superimposed by the onset of ocean-wide carbonate sedimentation. Our predictive algorithms, coupled to a plate tectonic model, provide a framework for constraining the seafloor sediment-driven eustatic sea-level component, which has grown from ˜80 to 210 m since 120 Ma. This implies a long-term sea-level rise component of 130 m, partly counteracting the contemporaneous increase in ocean basin depth due to progressive crustal ageing.

  2. Effect of thicker oceanic crust in the Archaean on the growth of continental crust through time

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wilks, M.E.

    1988-01-01

    Present crustal evolution models fail to account for the generation of the large volume of continental crust in the required time intervals. All Archaean plate tectonic models, whether invoking faster spreading rates, similar to today's spreading rates, or longer ridge lengths, essentially propose that continental crust has grown by island arc accretion due to the subduction of oceanic crust. The petrological differences that characterize the Archaean from later terrains result from the subduction of hotter oceanic crust into a hotter mantle. If the oceanic crust was appreciably thicker in the Archaean, as geothermal models would indicate, this thicker crust is surely going to have an effect on tectonic processes. A more valid approach is to compare the possible styles of convergence of thick oceanic crust with modern convergence zones. The best modern analog occurs where thick continental crust is colliding with thick continental crust. Oceanic crustal collision on the scale of the present-day Himalayan continental collision zone may have been a frequent occurrence in the Archaean, resulting in extensive partial melting of the hydrous underthrust oceanic crust to produce voluminous tonalite melts, leaving a depleted stabilized basic residuum. Present-day island arc accretion may not have been the dominant mechanism for the growth of the early Archaean crust

  3. Structural Evolution of Transform Fault Zones in Thick Oceanic Crust of Iceland

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    Karson, J. A.; Brandsdottir, B.; Horst, A. J.; Farrell, J.

    2017-12-01

    Spreading centers in Iceland are offset from the regional trend of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge by the Tjörnes Fracture Zone (TFZ) in the north and the South Iceland Seismic Zone (SISZ) in the south. Rift propagation away from the center of the Iceland hotspot, has resulted in migration of these transform faults to the N and S, respectively. As they migrate, new transform faults develop in older crust between offset spreading centers. Active transform faults, and abandoned transform structures left in their wakes, show features that reflect different amounts (and durations) of slip that can be viewed as a series of snapshots of different stages of transform fault evolution in thick, oceanic crust. This crust has a highly anisotropic, spreading fabric with pervasive zones of weakness created by spreading-related normal faults, fissures and dike margins oriented parallel to the spreading centers where they formed. These structures have a strong influence on the mechanical properties of the crust. By integrating available data, we suggest a series of stages of transform development: 1) Formation of an oblique rift (or leaky transform) with magmatic centers, linked by bookshelf fault zones (antithetic strike-slip faults at a high angle to the spreading direction) (Grimsey Fault Zone, youngest part of the TFZ); 2) broad zone of conjugate faulting (tens of km) (Hreppar Block N of the SISZ); 3) narrower ( 20 km) zone of bookshelf faulting aligned with the spreading direction (SISZ); 4) mature, narrow ( 1 km) through-going transform fault zone bounded by deformation (bookshelf faulting and block rotations) distributed over 10 km to either side (Húsavík-Flatey Fault Zone in the TFZ). With progressive slip, the transform zone becomes progressively narrower and more closely aligned with the spreading direction. The transform and non-transform (beyond spreading centers) domains may be truncated by renewed propagation and separated by subsequent spreading. This perspective

  4. Magma Supply of Southwest Indian Ocean: Implication from Crustal Thickness Anomalies

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    Chiheng, L.; Jianghai, L.; Huatian, Z.; Qingkai, F.

    2017-12-01

    The Southwest Indian Ridge (SWIR) is one of the world's slowest spreading ridges with a full spreading rate of 14mm a-1, belonging to ultraslow spreading ridge, which are a novel class of spreading centers symbolized by non-uniform magma supply and crustal accretion. Therefore, the crustal thickness of Southwest Indian Ocean is a way to explore the magmatic and tectonic process of SWIR and the hotspots around it. Our paper uses Residual Mantle Bouguer Anomaly processed with the latest global public data to invert the relative crustal thickness and correct it according to seismic achievements. Gravity-derived crustal thickness model reveals a huge range of crustal thickness in Southwest Indian Ocean from 0.04km to 24km, 7.5km of average crustal thickness, and 3.5km of standard deviation. In addition, statistics data of crustal thickness reveal the frequency has a bimodal mixed skewed distribution, which indicates the crustal accretion by ridge and ridge-plume interaction. Base on the crustal thickness model, we divide three types of crustal thickness in Southwest Indian Ocean. About 20.31% of oceanic crust is 9.8km thick as thick crust. Furthermore, Prominent thin crust anomalies are associated with the trend of most transform faults, but thick crust anomalies presents to northeast of Andrew Bain transform fault. Cold and depleted mantle are also the key factors to form the thin crust. The thick crust anomalies are constrained by hotspots, which provide abundant heat to the mantle beneath mid-ocean ridge or ocean basin. Finally, we roughly delineate the range of ridge-plume interaction and transform fault effect.

  5. Forearc oceanic crust in the Izu-Bonin arc - new insights from active-source seismic survey -

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    Kodaira, S.; Noguchi, N.; Takahashi, N.; Ishizuka, O.; Kaneda, Y.

    2009-12-01

    Petrological studies have suggested that oceanic crust is formed in forearc areas during the initial stage of subduction. However, there is little geophysical evidence for the formation of oceanic crust in those regions. In order to examine crustal formation process associated with a subduction initiation process, we conducted an active-source seismic survey at a forearc region in the Izu-Bonin intra-oceanic arc. The resultant seismic image shows a remarkably thin crust (less than 10 km) at the northern half of the Bonin ridge (at the north of the Chichi-jima) and abrupt thickening the crust (~ 20 km thick) toward the south (at the Haha-jima). Comparison of velocity-depth profiles of the thin forearc crust of the Bonin ridge with those of typical oceanic crusts showed them to be seismologically identical. The observed structural variation also well corresponds to magmatic activities along the forearc. Boninitic magmatism is evident in the area of thin crust and tholeiitic-calcalkaline andesitic volcanism in the area of thick crust. Based on high precision dating studies of those volcanic rocks, we interpreted that the oceanic-type thin crust associated with boninitic volcanism has been created soon after the initiation of subduction (45-48 Ma) and and that the nonoceanic thick crust was created by tholeiitic-calcalkaline andesitic magmatism after the boninitic magmatism was ceased. The above seismological evidences strongly support the idea of forearc oceanic crust (or phiolite) created by forearc spreading in the initial stage of subduction along the intra-oceanic arc.

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

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    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.

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

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    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

  8. Mid-ocean ridges produced thicker crust in the Jurassic than in Recent times

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    Van Avendonk, H. J.; Harding, J.; Davis, J. K.; Lawver, L. A.

    2016-12-01

    We present a compilation of published marine seismic refraction data to show that oceanic crust was 1.7 km thicker on average in the mid-Jurassic (170 Ma) than along the present-day mid-ocean ridge system. Plate reconstructions in a fixed hotspot framework show that the thickness of oceanic crust does not correlate with proximity to mantle hotspots, so it is likely that mid-plate volcanism is not the cause of this global trend. We propose that more melt was extracted from the upper mantle beneath mid-ocean ridges in the Jurassic than in recent times. Numerical studies show that temperature increase of 1 degree C in the mantle can lead to approximately 50-70 m thicker crust, so the upper mantle may have cooled 15-20 degrees C/100 Myr since 170 Ma. This average temperature decrease is larger than the secular cooling rate of the Earth's mantle, which is roughly 10 degrees C/100 Myr since the Archean. Apparently, the present-day configuration and dynamics of continental and oceanic plates removes heat more efficiently from the Earth's mantle than in its earlier history. The increase of ocean crustal thickness with plate age is also stronger in the Indian and Atlantic oceans than in the Pacific Ocean basin. This confirms that thermal insulation by the supercontinent Pangaea raised the temperature of the underlying asthenospheric mantle, which in turn led to more magmatic output at the Jurassic mid-ocean ridges of the Indian and Atlantic oceans.

  9. Physical properties and seismic structure of Izu-Bonin-Mariana fore-arc crust: Results from IODP Expedition 352 and comparison with oceanic crust

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    Christeson, G. L.; Morgan, S.; Kodaira, S.; Yamashita, M.; Almeev, R. R.; Michibayashi, K.; Sakuyama, T.; Ferré, E. C.; Kurz, W.

    2016-12-01

    Most of the well-preserved ophiolite complexes are believed to form in suprasubduction zone (SSZ) settings. We compare physical properties and seismic structure of SSZ crust at the Izu-Bonin-Mariana (IBM) fore arc with oceanic crust drilled at Holes 504B and 1256D to evaluate the similarities of SSZ and oceanic crust. Expedition 352 basement consists of fore-arc basalt (FAB) and boninite lavas and dikes. P-wave sonic log velocities are substantially lower for the IBM fore arc (mean values 3.1-3.4 km/s) compared to Holes 504B and 1256D (mean values 5.0-5.2 km/s) at depths of 0-300 m below the sediment-basement interface. For similar porosities, lower P-wave sonic log velocities are observed at the IBM fore arc than at Holes 504B and 1256D. We use a theoretical asperity compression model to calculate the fractional area of asperity contact Af across cracks. Af values are 0.021-0.025 at the IBM fore arc and 0.074-0.080 at Holes 504B and 1256D for similar depth intervals (0-300 m within basement). The Af values indicate more open (but not necessarily wider) cracks in the IBM fore arc than for the oceanic crust at Holes 504B and 1256D, which is consistent with observations of fracturing and alteration at the Expedition 352 sites. Seismic refraction data constrain a crustal thickness of 10-15 km along the IBM fore arc. Implications and inferences are that crust-composing ophiolites formed at SSZ settings could be thick and modified after accretion, and these processes should be considered when using ophiolites as an analog for oceanic crust.

  10. Magnetization of lower oceanic crust and upper mantle

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    Kikawa, E.

    2004-05-01

    The location of the magnetized rocks of the oceanic crust that are responsible for sea-floor spreading magnetic anomalies has been a long-standing problem in geophysics. The recognition of these anomalies was a key stone in the development of the theory of plate tectonics. Our present concept of oceanic crustal magnetization is much more complex than the original, uniformly magnetized model of Vine-Matthews-Morley Hypothesis. Magnetic inversion studies indicated that the upper oceanic extrusive layer (Layer 2A of 0.5km thick) was the only magnetic layer and that it was not necessary to postulate any contribution from deeper parts of oceanic crust. Direct measurements of the magnetic properties of the rocks recovered from the sea floor, however, have shown that the magnetization of Layer 2A, together with the observations that this layer could record geomagnetic field reversals within a vertical section, is insufficient to give the required size of observed magnetic anomalies and that some contribution from lower intrusive rocks is necessary. Magnetization of oceanic intrusive rocks were observed to be reasonably high enough to contribute to sea-floor spreading magnetic anomalies, but were considered somewhat equivocal until late 1980Os, in part because studies had been conducted on unoriented dredged and ophiolite samples and on intermittent DSDP/ODP cores. Since ODP Leg 118 that cored and recovered continuous 500m of oceanic intrusive layer at Site 735B, Southwest Indian Ridge with an extremely high recovery of 87 percent, there have been several ODP Legs (legs 147, 153, 176, 179 and 209) that were devoted to drilling gabbroic rocks and peridotites. In terms of the magnetization intensities, all of the results obtained from these ODP Legs were supportive of the model that a significant contribution must come from gabbros and peridotites and the source of the lineated magnetic anomalies must reside in most of the oceanic crust as well as crust-mantle boundary

  11. Kinetics of the crust thickness development of bread during baking.

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    Soleimani Pour-Damanab, Alireza; Jafary, A; Rafiee, Sh

    2014-11-01

    The development of crust thickness of bread during baking is an important aspect of bread quality and shelf-life. Computer vision system was used for measuring the crust thickness via colorimetric properties of bread surface during baking process. Crust thickness had a negative and positive relationship with Lightness (L (*) ) and total color change (E (*) ) of bread surface, respectively. A linear negative trend was found between crust thickness and moisture ratio of bread samples. A simple mathematical model was proposed to predict the development of crust thickness of bread during baking, where the crust thickness was depended on moisture ratio that was described by the Page moisture losing model. The independent variables of the model were baking conditions, i.e. oven temperature and air velocity, and baking time. Consequently, the proposed model had well prediction ability, as the mean absolute estimation error of the model was 7.93 %.

  12. Controls on ferromanganese crust composition and reconnaissance resource potential, Ninetyeast Ridge, Indian Ocean

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    Hein, James; Conrad, Tracey A.; Mizell, Kira; Banakar, Virupaxa K.; Frey, Frederick A.; Sager, William W.

    2016-01-01

    A reconnaissance survey of Fe-Mn crusts from the 5000 km long (~31°S to 10°N) Ninetyeast Ridge (NER) in the Indian Ocean shows their widespread occurrence along the ridge as well as with water depth on the ridge flanks. The crusts are hydrogenetic based in growth rates and discrimination plots. Twenty samples from 12 crusts from 9 locations along the ridge were analyzed for chemical and mineralogical compositions, growth rates, and statistical relationships (Q-mode factor analysis, correlation coefficients) were calculated. The crusts collected are relatively thin (maximum 40 mm), and those analyzed varied from 4 mm to 32 mm. However, crusts as thick as 80 mm can be expected to occur based on the age of rocks that comprise the NER and the growth rates calculated here. Growth rates of the crusts increase to the north along the NER and with water depth. The increase to the north resulted from an increased supply of Mn from the oxygen minimum zone (OMZ) to depths below the OMZ combined with an increased supply of Fe at depth from the dissolution of biogenic carbonate and from deep-sourced hydrothermal Fe. These increased supplies of Fe increased growth rates of the deeper-water crusts along the entire NER. Because of the huge terrigenous (rivers, eolian, pyroclastic) and hydrothermal (three spreading centers) inputs to the Indian Ocean, and the history of primary productivity, Fe-Mn crust compositions vary from those analyzed from open-ocean locations in the Pacific.

  13. Continental Growth and Recycling in Convergent Orogens with Large Turbidite Fans on Oceanic Crust

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    Ben D. Goscombe

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Convergent plate margins where large turbidite fans with slivers of oceanic basement are accreted to continents represent important sites of continental crustal growth and recycling. Crust accreted in these settings is dominated by an upper layer of recycled crustal and arc detritus (turbidites underlain by a layer of tectonically imbricated upper oceanic crust and/or thinned continental crust. When oceanic crust is converted to lower continental crust it represents a juvenile addition to the continental growth budget. This two-tiered accreted crust is often the same thickness as average continental crustal and is isostatically balanced near sea level. The Paleozoic Lachlan Orogen of eastern Australia is the archetypical example of a tubidite-dominated accretionary orogeny. The Neoproterozoic-Cambrian Damaran Orogen of SW Africa is similar to the Lachlan Orogen except that it was incorporated into Gondwana via a continent-continent collision. The Mesozoic Rangitatan Orogen of New Zealand illustrates the transition of convergent margin from a Lachlan-type to more typical accretionary wedge type orogen. The spatial and temporal variations in deformation, metamorphism, and magmatism across these orogens illustrate how large volumes of turbidite and their relict oceanic basement eventually become stable continental crust. The timing of deformation and metamorphism recorded in these rocks reflects the crustal thickening phase, whereas post-tectonic magmatism constrains the timing of chemical maturation and cratonization. Cratonization of continental crust is fostered because turbidites represent fertile sources for felsic magmatism. Recognition of similar orogens in the Proterozoic and Archean is important for the evaluation of crustal growth models, particularly for those based on detrital zircon age patterns, because crustal growth by accretion of upper oceanic crust or mafic underplating does not readily result in the addition of voluminous zircon

  14. Millennial-scale ocean acidification and late Quaternary decline of cryptic bacterial crusts in tropical reefs.

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    Riding, R; Liang, L; Braga, J C

    2014-09-01

    Ocean acidification by atmospheric carbon dioxide has increased almost continuously since the last glacial maximum (LGM), 21,000 years ago. It is expected to impair tropical reef development, but effects on reefs at the present day and in the recent past have proved difficult to evaluate. We present evidence that acidification has already significantly reduced the formation of calcified bacterial crusts in tropical reefs. Unlike major reef builders such as coralline algae and corals that more closely control their calcification, bacterial calcification is very sensitive to ambient changes in carbonate chemistry. Bacterial crusts in reef cavities have declined in thickness over the past 14,000 years with largest reduction occurring 12,000-10,000 years ago. We interpret this as an early effect of deglacial ocean acidification on reef calcification and infer that similar crusts were likely to have been thicker when seawater carbonate saturation was increased during earlier glacial intervals, and thinner during interglacials. These changes in crust thickness could have substantially affected reef development over glacial cycles, as rigid crusts significantly strengthen framework and their reduction would have increased the susceptibility of reefs to biological and physical erosion. Bacterial crust decline reveals previously unrecognized millennial-scale acidification effects on tropical reefs. This directs attention to the role of crusts in reef formation and the ability of bioinduced calcification to reflect changes in seawater chemistry. It also provides a long-term context for assessing anticipated anthropogenic effects. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. Structural evolution of preexisting oceanic crust through intraplate igneous activities in the Marcus-Wake seamount chain

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    Kaneda, Kentaro; Kodaira, Shuichi; Nishizawa, Azusa; Morishita, Taisei; Takahashi, Narumi

    2010-10-01

    Multichannel seismic reflection studies and seismic refraction surveys with ocean bottom seismographs in the Marcus-Wake seamount chain in the northwestern Pacific Ocean reveal P wave velocity structures of hot spot-origin seamounts and adjacent oceanic crust. Inside the seamounts are central high-velocity (>6.5 km/s) structures extending nearly to the top that may indicate intrusive cores. Thick sediment layers (up to 4 km) with P wave velocities of 4-5 km/s have accumulated on seafloor that predates seamount formation. Downward crustal thickening of up to 2 km was documented beneath a large seamount cluster, but thickening was not confirmed below a small seamount cluster. Volume ratios of an intrusive core to a seamount body are 15-20%, indicating that most of the supplied magma was consumed in forming the thick sedimentary and volcaniclastic layer constituting the seamount flanks. Underplating and downward crustal thickening may tend to occur when second or later intrusive cores are formed in a seamount. P wave velocities in the lowest crust and in the uppermost mantle below the seamount chain are 0.1-0.2 km/s higher and 0.3-0.5 km/s lower, respectively, than velocities below oceanic crust. We explain this difference as a result of sill-like intrusion of magma into the lower crust and uppermost mantle. Reflected waves observed at offsets >200 km are from mantle reflectors at depths of 30-45 km and 55-70 km. The shallower reflectors may indicate structures formed by intraplate igneous activities, and the deeper reflectors may correspond to the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary.

  16. Oceanographer transform fault structure compared to that of surrounding oceanic crust: Results from seismic refraction data analysis

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    Ambos, E. L.; Hussong, D. M.

    1986-02-01

    A high quality seismic refraction data set was collected near the intersection of the tranform portion of the Oceanographer Fracture Zone (OFZ) with the adjacent northern limb of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge spreading center (MAR). One seismic line was shot down the axis of the transform valley. Another was shot parallel to the spreading center, crossing from normal oceanic crust into the transform valley, and out again. This latter line was recorded by four Ocean Bottom Seismometers (OBSs) spaced along its length, providing complete reversed coverage over the crucial transform valley zone. Findings indicate that whereas the crust of the transform valley is only slightly thinner (4.5 km) compared to normal oceanic crust (5-8 km), the structure is different. Velocities in the range of 6.9 to 7.7. km/sec, which are characteristics of seismic layer 3B, are absent, although a substantial thickness (approximately 3 km) of 6.1-6.8 km/sec material does appear to be present. The upper crust, some 2 km in thickness, is characterized by a high velocity gradient (1.5 sec -1) in which veloxity increases from 2.7 km/sec at the seafloor to 5.8 km/sec at the base of the section. A centrally-located deep of the transform valley has thinner crust (1-2 km), whereas the crust gradually thickens past the transform valley-spreading center intersection. Analysis of the seismic line crossing sub-perpendicular to the transform valley demonstrates abrupt thinning of the upper crustal section, and thickening of the lower crust outside of the trasform valley. In addition, high-velocity material seems to occur under the valley flanks, particularly the southern flanking ridge. This ridge, which is on the side of the transform opposite to the intersection of spreading ridge and transform, may be an expression of uplifted, partially serpentinized upper mantle rocks.

  17. Growth of the continental crust: a planetary-mantle perspective

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Warren, P.H.

    1988-01-01

    The lack of earth rocks older than about 3.8 Ga is frequently interpreted as evidence that the earth formed little or no subduction-resistant continental crust during the first 700 My of its history. Such models obviously imply that the pre-3.8 Ga earth was covered entirely or almost entirely by smoothly subducting oceanic crust. On the other hand, the thermal regime of the early earth probably tended to cause the oceanic crust at this time to be comparatively thin and comparatively mafic. The present earth is covered by about 50 percent oceanic crust, averaging about 7 km in thickness, and 41 percent continental crust, averaging roughly 40 km in thickness. Thus continentless-early-earth models would seem to imply a total mass of crust less than 1/3 that of the present day earth. Possible explanations are examined

  18. The Imaging and Evolution of Seismic Layer 2A Thickness from a 0-70 Ma Oceanic Crustal Transect in the South Atlantic

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    Estep, J. D.; Reece, R.; Kardell, D. A.; Christeson, G. L.; Carlson, R. L.

    2017-12-01

    Seismic layer 2A, the uppermost igneous portion of oceanic crust, is commonly used to refer to the seismic velocities of upper crust that are bounded below by a steep vertical velocity gradient. Layer 2A velocities are known to increase with crustal age, from 2.5 km/s in crust 15 Ma. Thickness of layer 2A has been shown to increase by a factor of 2 within 1 Ma at fast spreading ridges and then remain relatively constant, while layer 2A maintains a fairly consistent thickness, irrespective of age, at slow-intermediate spreading ridges. Layer 2A thickness and velocity evolution studies to date have been largely focused on young oceanic crust very proximal to a spreading center with little investigation of changes (or lack thereof) that occur at crustal ages >10 Ma. We utilize a multichannel seismic dataset collected at 30° S in the western South Atlantic that continuously images 0 - 70 Ma oceanic crust along a single flowline generated at the slow-intermediate spreading Mid-Atlantic Ridge. We follow the methods of previous studies by processing the data to image the layer 2A event, which is then used for calculating thickness. 1D travel time forward modeling at regularly spaced age intervals across the transect provides for the conversion of time to depth thickness, and for determining the evolution of velocities with age. Our results show layer 2A in 20 Ma crust is roughly double the thickness of that in crust 0-5 Ma (830 vs. 440 m), but thickness does not appear to change beyond 20 Ma. The layer 2A event is readily observable in crust 0-50 Ma, is nearly completely absent in crust 50-65 Ma, and then reappears with anomalously high amplitude and lateral continuity in crust 65-70 Ma. Our results suggest that layer 2A thickens with age at the slow-intermediate spreading southern Mid-Atlantic Ridge, and that layer 2A either continues to evolve at the older crustal ages, well beyond the expected 10-15 Ma "mature age", or that external factors have altered the crust at

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

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    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

  20. Magnetization of the oceanic crust: TRM or CRM?

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    Raymond, C. A.; Labrecque, J. L.

    1987-01-01

    A model was proposed in which chemical remanent magnetization (CRM) acquired within the first 20 Ma of crustal evolution may account for 80% of the bulk natural remanent magnetization (NRM) of older basalts. The CRM of the crust is acquired as the original thermoremanent magnetization (TRM) is lost through low temperature alteration. The CRM intensity and direction are controlled by the post-emplacement polarity history. This model explains several independent observations concerning the magnetization of the oceanic crust. The model accounts for amplitude and skewness discrepancies observed in both the intermediate wavelength satellite field and the short wavelength sea surface magnetic anomaly pattern. It also explains the decay of magnetization away from the spreading axis, and the enhanced magnetization of the Cretaceous Quiet Zones while predicting other systematic variations with age in the bulk magnetization of the oceanic crust. The model also explains discrepancies in the anomaly skewness parameter observed for anomalies of Cretaceous age. Further studies indicate varying rates of TRM decay in very young crust which depicts the advance of low temperature alteration through the magnetized layer.

  1. 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

  2. The Atlantis Bank Gabbro Massif, SW Indian Ridge: the Largest Know Exposure of the Lower Crust in the Oceans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dick, H. J.; Kvassnes, A. J.; Kinoshita, H.; MacLeod, C. J.; Robinson, P. T.

    2017-12-01

    Until the discovery of oceanic core complexes little was known and much inferred about the lower ocean crust at slow-spreading ridges. Their study shows the ocean crust isn't simply a uniform layer-cake of pillow lavas, sheeted dikes and gabbros, but is highly variable in thickness, composition and architecture, and even absent over large regions. The 660 km2 Atlantis Bank Gabbro Massif in the rift-mountains of the SW Indian Ridge flanking the Atlantis II Transform is the magmatic end member for ocean core complexes, and best approximates `average' slow-spread crust. Thus it has been a focus for drilling since its discovery in 1986, leading to the current attempt to drill to Moho there (Project SloMo). There are 3 ODP and IODP drill holes on its crest: 1508-m deep Hole 735B, 158-m deep Hole 1105A, and 809.4-m deep Hole U1473. These provide a 200 Kyr view of lower crustal accretion at a slow-spread ocean ridge. Here we extend this view to 2.7 Myr. Mapping and sampling shows the gabbro massif extends nearly the length of a single 2nd order magmatic ridge segment. With numerous inliers of the dike-gabbro transition at numerous locations, and a crust-mantle boundary, traced for 30-km along the transform wall, it would appear to represent a full section of the lower crust. As Moho is at 5.5 ± 1 km mbsf near Hole 735B, and 4.5 km beneath the transform, it is likely a serpentinization front. The crust-mantle boundary was crossed by dives at 4 locations. In each case gabbros at the base of the crust crystallized from melt that had previously fractionated 50% or more from a likely parent. Thus the gabbro massif must be laterally zoned, and the parental mantle melts had to have been emplaced at the center of the paleo-ridge segment, before intruding laterally to the distal end of the complex. Gabbros on a lithospheric flow line down the center of the massif closely resemble those from the drill holes. This shows that while lateral variations in crustal composition and

  3. A deep hydrothermal fault zone in the lower oceanic crust, Samail ophiolite Oman

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zihlmann, B.; Mueller, S.; Koepke, J.; Teagle, D. A. H.

    2017-12-01

    Hydrothermal circulation is a key process for the exchange of chemical elements between the oceans and the solid Earth and for the extraction of heat from newly accreted crust at mid-ocean ridges. However, due to a dearth of samples from intact oceanic crust, or continuous samples from ophiolites, there remain major short comings in our understanding of hydrothermal circulation in the oceanic crust, especially in the deeper parts. In particular, it is unknown whether fluid recharge and discharge occurs pervasively or if it is mainly channeled within discrete zones such as faults. Here, we present a description of a hydrothermal fault zone that crops out in Wadi Gideah in the layered gabbro section of the Samail ophiolite of Oman. Field observations reveal a one meter thick chlorite-epidote normal fault with disseminated pyrite and chalcopyrite and heavily altered gabbro clasts at its core. In both, the hanging and the footwall the gabbro is altered and abundantly veined with amphibole, epidote, prehnite and zeolite. Whole rock mass balance calculations show enrichments in Fe, Mn, Sc, V, Co, Cu, Rb, Zr, Nb, Th and U and depletions of Si, Ca, Na, Cr, Zn, Sr, Ba and Pb concentrations in the fault rock compared to fresh layered gabbros. Gabbro clasts within the fault zone as well as altered rock from the hanging wall show enrichments in Na, Sc, V, Co, Rb, Zr, Nb and depletion of Cr, Ni, Cu, Zn, Sr and Pb. Strontium isotope whole rock data of the fault rock yield 87Sr/86Sr ratios of 0.7046, which is considerably more radiogenic than fresh layered gabbro from this locality (87Sr/86Sr = 0.7030 - 0.7034), and similar to black smoker hydrothermal signatures based on epidote, measured elsewhere in the ophiolite. Altered gabbro clasts within the fault zone show similar values with 87Sr/86Sr ratios of 0.7045 - 0.7050, whereas hanging wall and foot wall display values only slightly more radiogenic than fresh layered gabbro.The secondary mineral assemblages and strontium isotope

  4. Extent and impact of Cretaceous magmatism on the formation and evolution of Jurassic oceanic crust in the western Pacific

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, H.; Lizarralde, D.; Tominaga, M.; Hart, L.; Tivey, M.; Swift, S. A.

    2015-12-01

    Multi-channel seismic (MCS) images and wide-angle sonobuoy data acquired during a 2011 cruise on the R/V Thomas G. Thompson (TN272) show widespread emplacement of igneous sills and broadly thickened oceanic Layer 2 through hundreds of kilometers of oceanic crust in one of the oldest ocean basins in the western Pacific, a region known as the Jurassic Quiet Zone (JQZ). Oceanic crust from the JQZ has grown through at least two main magmatic phases: It was formed by mid-ocean ridge processes in the Jurassic (at ~170 Ma), and then it was added to by a substantial Cretaceous magmatic event (at ~75-125 Ma). The scale of Cretaceous magmatism is exemplified by massive seafloor features such as the Ontong Java Plateau, Mid-Pacific Mountains, Marshall-Gilbert Islands, Marcus-Wake Seamount Chain, and numerous guyots, seamounts, and volcaniclastic flows observed throughout the region. We use seismic data to image heavily intruded and modified oceanic crust along an 800-km-long transect through the JQZ in order to examine how processes of secondary crustal growth - including magmatic emplacement, transport, and distribution - are expressed in the structure of modified oceanic crust. We also model gravity anomalies to constrain crustal thickness and depth to the Moho. Our observations suggest that western Pacific crust was modified via the following modes of emplacement: (a) extrusive seafloor flows that may or may not have grown into seamounts, (b) seamounts formed through intrusive diking that pushed older sediments aside during their formation, and (c) igneous sills that intruded sediments at varying depths. Emplacement modes (a) and (b) tend to imply a focused, pipe-like mechanism for melt transport through the lithosphere. Such a mechanism does not explain the observed broadly distributed intrusive emplacement of mode (c) however, which may entail successive sill emplacement between igneous basement and sediments thickening oceanic Layer 2 along ~400 km of our seismic line

  5. The effects of post-accretion sedimentation on the magnetization of oceanic crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dyment, J.; Granot, R.

    2016-12-01

    The presence of marine magnetic anomalies related to seafloor spreading is often considered a key evidence to locate the continent-ocean boundary (COB) at passive margins. Conversely, thermal demagnetization is also advocated to explain the poor shape of such oceanic anomalies under thick sedimentary cover. To investigate the effects of post-accretion sedimentation on marine magnetic anomalies, we focus our study on two conjugate regions of the southern South Atlantic Ocean (Anomalies M4 to M0) that, although formed at the same time and along the same spreading segments, reveal contrasting characters. The anomalies exhibit strong amplitudes (>400 nT) and a well-marked shape off South Africa, where the sediments are less than 3 km-thick, but become weaker ( 200 nT) and much smoother off northern Argentina, where the sedimentary cover is thicker than 5 km. We interpret this observation as reflecting thermal demagnetization of the extrusive layer and its low Curie temperature titanomagnetite. We perform a series of thermo-magnetic models (Dyment and Arkani-Hamed, Geophys. J. Int., 1995, modified to include the sedimentary cover) to simulate the acquisition and loss of remanent magnetization in the oceanic lithosphere. We assume that most of the sediments accumulated shortly after crustal accretion. We investigate a range of possible thermal demagnetization temperatures for the extrusive layer and find that 200°C to 280ºC best explains the observations, in reasonable agreement with Curie temperatures of titanomagnetite, suggesting that most of the extrusive layer may be demagnetized under sediments thicker than 5 km. Thermal demagnetization should therefore be considered while interpreting marine magnetic anomalies for the age and nature of the crust (i.e., continental versus oceanic) in regions with thick sedimentary cover.

  6. Contraction or expansion of the Moon's crust during magma ocean freezing?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elkins-Tanton, Linda T; Bercovici, David

    2014-09-13

    The lack of contraction features on the Moon has been used to argue that the Moon underwent limited secular cooling, and thus had a relatively cool initial state. A cool early state in turn limits the depth of the lunar magma ocean. Recent GRAIL gravity measurements, however, suggest that dikes were emplaced in the lower crust, requiring global lunar expansion. Starting from the magma ocean state, we show that solidification of the lunar magma ocean would most likely result in expansion of the young lunar crust, and that viscous relaxation of the crust would prevent early tectonic features of contraction or expansion from being recorded permanently. The most likely process for creating the expansion recorded by the dikes is melting during cumulate overturn of the newly solidified lunar mantle. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  7. Deformation and rupture of the oceanic crust may control growth of Hawaiian volcanoes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Got, Jean-Luc; Monteiller, Vadim; Monteux, Julien; Hassani, Riad; Okubo, Paul

    2008-01-24

    Hawaiian volcanoes are formed by the eruption of large quantities of basaltic magma related to hot-spot activity below the Pacific Plate. Despite the apparent simplicity of the parent process--emission of magma onto the oceanic crust--the resulting edifices display some topographic complexity. Certain features, such as rift zones and large flank slides, are common to all Hawaiian volcanoes, indicating similarities in their genesis; however, the underlying mechanism controlling this process remains unknown. Here we use seismological investigations and finite-element mechanical modelling to show that the load exerted by large Hawaiian volcanoes can be sufficient to rupture the oceanic crust. This intense deformation, combined with the accelerated subsidence of the oceanic crust and the weakness of the volcanic edifice/oceanic crust interface, may control the surface morphology of Hawaiian volcanoes, especially the existence of their giant flank instabilities. Further studies are needed to determine whether such processes occur in other active intraplate volcanoes.

  8. Testing Predictions of Continental Insulation using Oceanic Crustal Thicknesses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoggard, Mark; Shorttle, Oliver; White, Nicky

    2016-04-01

    The thermal blanketing effect of continental crust has been predicted to lead to elevated temperatures within the upper mantle beneath supercontinents. Initial break-up is associated with increased magmatism and the generation of flood basalts. Continued rifting and sea-floor spreading lead to a steady reduction of this thermal anomaly. Recently, evidence in support of this behaviour has come from the major element geochemistry of mid-ocean ridge basalts, which suggest excess rifting temperatures of ˜ 150 °C that decay over ˜ 100 Ma. We have collated a global inventory of ˜ 1000 seismic reflection profiles and ˜ 500 wide-angle refraction experiments from the oceanic realm. Data are predominantly located along passive margins, but there are also multiple surveys in the centres of the major oceanic basins. Oceanic crustal thickness has been mapped, taking care to avoid areas of secondary magmatic thickening near seamounts or later thinning such as across transform faults. These crustal thicknesses are a proxy for mantle potential temperature at the time of melt formation beneath a mid-ocean ridge system, allowing us to quantify the amplitude and duration of thermal anomalies generated beneath supercontinents. The Jurassic break-up of the Central Atlantic and the Cretaceous rifting that formed the South Atlantic Ocean are both associated with excess temperatures of ˜ 50 °C that have e-folding times of ˜ 50 Ma. In addition to this background trend, excess temperatures reach > 150 °C around the region of the Rio Grande Rise, associated with the present-day Tristan hotspot. The e-folding time of this more local event is ˜ 10 Ma, which mirrors results obtained for the North Atlantic Ocean south of Iceland. In contrast, crustal thicknesses from the Pacific Ocean reveal approximately constant potential temperature through time. This observation is in agreement with predictions, as the western Pacific was formed by rifting of an oceanic plate. In summary

  9. High-velocity basal sediment package atop oceanic crust, offshore Cascadia: Impacts on plate boundary processes and fluid migration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, D. E.; Keranen, K. M.

    2017-12-01

    Differences in fluid pressure and mechanical properties at megathrust boundaries in subduction zones have been proposed to create varying seismogenic behavior. In Cascadia, where large ruptures are possible but little seismicity occurs presently, new seismic transects across the deformation front (COAST cruise; Holbrook et al., 2012) image an unusually high-wavespeed sedimentary unit directly overlying oceanic crust. Wavespeed increases before sediments reach the deformation front, and the well-laminated unit, consistently of 1 km thickness, can be traced for 50 km beneath the accretionary prism before imaging quality declines. Wavespeed is modeled via iterative prestack time migration (PSTM) imaging and increases from 3.5 km/sec on the seaward end of the profile to >5.0 km/s near the deformation front. Landward of the deformation front, wavespeed is low along seaward-dipping thrust faults in the Quaternary accretionary prism, indicative of rapid dewatering along faults. The observed wavespeed of 5.5 km/sec just above subducting crust is consistent with porosity intersects the plate boundary at an oblique angle and changes the degree of hydration of the oceanic plate as it subducts within our area. Fluid flow out of oceanic crust is likely impeded by the low-porosity basal sediment package except along the focused thrust faults. Decollements are present at the top of oceanic basement, at the top of the high-wavespeed basal unit, and within sedimentary strata at higher levels; the decollement at the top of oceanic crust is active at the toe of the deformation front. The basal sedimentary unit appears to be mechanically strong, similar to observations from offshore Sumatra, where strongly consolidated sediments at the deformation front are interpreted to facilitate megathrust rupture to the trench (Hupers et al., 2017). A uniformly strong plate interface at Cascadia may inhibit microseismicity while building stress that is released in great earthquakes.

  10. 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

  11. Deep Drilling Results in the Atlantic Ocean: Ocean Crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    1979-01-01

    the volcano Agua de Pau. //i ( ,.which nas eruted 5 tir-es in tile past 4.600 / ye,.rs, the last in 1563. Xumerous not springs S/ o3220 an’ soradic...complex. In a study layered structure and physical properties to of ophiolite complexes in southern Chile , de Wit ce those of oceanic crust...Spooner et al, 1977) and and Govett, 1973). A large lens, for example that S. Chile (Stern et al, 1976). Zeolite to amphib- at Skouriotissa, had a

  12. A comparison of chemical compositions of reported altered oceanic crusts and global MORB data set: implication for isotopic heterogeneity of recycled materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shimoda, G.; Kogiso, T.

    2017-12-01

    Chemical composition of altered oceanic crust is one of important constraints to delineate chemical heterogeneity of the mantle. Accordingly, many researchers have been studied to determine bulk chemical composition of altered oceanic crust mainly based on chemical compositions of old oceanic crusts at Site 801 and Site 417/418, and young crust at Site 504 (e.g., Staudigel et al., 1996; Bach et al. 2003; Kuo et al., 2016). Their careful estimation provided reliable bulk chemical compositions of these Sites and revealed common geochemical feature of alteration. To assess effect of recycling of altered oceanic crust on chemical evolution of the mantle, it might be meaningful to discuss whether the reported chemical compositions of altered oceanic crusts can represent chemical composition of globally subducted oceanic crusts. Reported chemical compositions of fresh glass or less altered samples from Site 801, 417/418 and 504 were highly depleted compared to that of global MORB reported by Gale et al. (2013), suggesting that there might be sampling bias. Hence, it could be important to consider chemical difference between oceanic crusts of these three Sites and global MORB to discuss effect of recycling of oceanic crust on isotopic heterogeneity of the mantle. It has been suggested that one of controlling factors of chemical variation of oceanic crust is crustal spreading rate because different degree of partial melting affects chemical composition of magmas produced at a mid-ocean ridge. Crustal spreading rate could also affect intensity of alteration. Namely, oceanic crusts produced at slow-spreading ridges may prone to be altered due to existence of larger displacement faults compared to fast spreading ridges which have relatively smooth topography. Thus, it might be significant to evaluate isotopic evolution of oceanic crusts those were produced at different spreading rates. In this presentation, we will provide a possible chemical variation of altered oceanic

  13. Ocean Sediment Thickness Contours

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Ocean sediment thickness contours in 200 meter intervals for water depths ranging from 0 - 18,000 meters. These contours were derived from a global sediment...

  14. Preface for Discussion on Mid-Ocean Ridges: dynamics of processes associated with creation of new ocean crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cann, J. R.; Elderfield, H.; Laughton, A.

    Preface for Discussion on Mid-Ocean Ridges: dynamics of processes associated with creation of new ocean crust. A Discussion held at the Royal Society on 6th and 7th March 1996. Organized and edited by J. R. Cann, H. Elderfield and A. Laughton.

  15. Physical Properties and Seismic Structure of Izu-Bonin-Mariana Fore Arc crust: Results From IODP Expedition 352 and Comparison with Oceanic Crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christeson, G. L.; Morgan, S.; Kodaira, S.; Yamashita, M.

    2015-12-01

    Most of the well-preserved ophiolite complexes are believed to form in supra-subduction zone settings. One of the goals of IODP Expedition 352 was to test the supra-subduction zone ophiolite model by drilling forearc crust at the northern Izu-Bonin-Mariana (IBM) system. IBM forearc drilling successfully cored 1.22 km of volcanic lavas and underlying dikes at four sites. A surprising observation is that basement compressional velocities measured from downhole logging average ~3.0 km/s, compared to values of 5 km/s at similar basement depths at oceanic crust sites 504B and 1256D. Typically there is an inverse relationship in extrusive lavas between velocity and porosity, but downhole logging shows similar porosities for the IBM and oceanic crust sites, despite the large difference in measured compressional velocities. These observations can be explained by a difference in crack morphologies between IBM forearc and oceanic crust, with a smaller fractional area of asperity contact across cracks at EXP 352 sites than at sites 504B and 1256D. Seismic profiles at the IBM forearc image many faults, which may be related to the crack population.

  16. Statistical averaging of marine magnetic anomalies and the aging of oceanic crust.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blakely, R.J.

    1983-01-01

    Visual comparison of Mesozoic and Cenozoic magnetic anomalies in the North Pacific suggests that older anomalies contain less short-wavelength information than younger anomalies in this area. To test this observation, magnetic profiles from the North Pacific are examined from crust of three ages: 0-2.1, 29.3-33.1, and 64.9-70.3Ma. For each time period, at least nine profiles were analyzed by 1) calculating the power density spectrum of each profile, 2) averaging the spectra together, and 3) computing a 'recording filter' for each time period by assuming a hypothetical seafloor model. The model assumes that the top of the source is acoustic basement, the source thickness is 0.5km, and the time scale of geomagnetic reversals is according to Ness et al. (1980). The calculated power density spectra of the three recording filters are complex in shape but show an increase of attenuation of short-wavelength information as the crust ages. These results are interpreted using a multilayer model for marine magnetic anomalies in which the upper layer, corresponding to pillow basalt of seismic layer 2A, acts as a source of noise to the magnetic anomalies. As the ocean crust ages, this noisy contribution by the pillow basalts becomes less significant to the anomalies. Consequently, magnetic sources below layer 2A must be faithful recorders of geomagnetic reversals.-AuthorPacific power density spectrum

  17. Thickness, Composition and Physical Properties of Crust in Iceland's Neovolcanic Zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelley, D. F.; Barton, M.

    2005-12-01

    We report the results of an ongoing effort to use petrologic data to estimate the thickness, composition and physical properties of crust in the neovolcanic zone of Iceland. The objectives are to constrain the depths of magma chambers, calculate geothermal gradients, and resolve discrepancies in the interpretation of geophysical data (primarily gravity and seismic). 1788 whole rock analyses and 170 glass analyses of erupted Icelandic lavas from the neovolcanic zone have been compiled from published papers. Variation diagrams indicate that Icelandic magmas evolved primarily by crystallization of Ol-Cpx-Plag, whereas the most primitive magmas evolved by crystallization of Ol alone. Phase equilibrium constraints were used to quantitatively estimate the pressure of crystallization along the Ol-Cpx-Plag cotectic and hence the depths of the magma chambers. The latter occur at 20±6.2 km, and the average temperature of magma in the chambers is 1207±26°C (also estimated from phase equilibrium constraints). The results suggest magma chambers located at the base of the crust indicating that the latter is ~20 km thick along the neovolcanic zone in agreement with estimates based on geophysical studies. It is argued that the average composition of erupted lavas provides an accurate estimate of crustal composition because magma evolution occurs in sub-crustal chambers. A representative geothermal gradient was calculated using the average crust composition and surface heat flow measurements. The calculated gradient is consistent with the periodic presence of shallow intracrustal magma chambers at ~5 km depth that have been detected seismically, with hydrothermal circulation in the uppermost 3 km of the crust, and with temperatures of ~1200°C at the base of the crust. The geotherm was used to calculate a density-depth profile for average crust. Densities decrease with depth if a low-pressure mineralogy is used for the crust. This density inversion can be avoided by assuming

  18. Crust and mantle of the gulf of Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, G.W.

    1972-01-01

    A SEEMING paradox has puzzled investigators of the crustal structure of the Gulf of Mexico since Ewing et al.1 calculated that a unit area of the rather thick crust in the gulf contains less mass than does a combination of the crust and enough of the upper mantle to make a comparable thickness in the Atlantic Ocean. They also noted that the free-air gravity of the gulf is essentially normal and fails by a large factor to be low enough to reflect the mass difference that they calculated. We propose a solution to this problem. ?? 1972 Nature Publishing Group.

  19. 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.

  20. Variations of Oceanic Crust in the Northeastern Gulf of Mexico From Integrated Geophysical Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, M.; Filina, I.

    2017-12-01

    Tectonic history of the Gulf of Mexico remains a subject of debate due to structural complexity of the area and lack of geological constraints. In this study, we focus our investigation on oceanic domain of the northeastern Gulf of Mexico to characterize the crustal distribution and structures. We use published satellite derived potential fields (gravity and magnetics), seismic refraction data (GUMBO3 and GUMBO4) and well logs to build the subsurface models that honor all available datasets. In the previous study, we have applied filters to potential fields grids and mapped the segments of an extinct mid-ocean ridge, ocean-continent boundary (OCB) and several transform faults in our study area. We also developed the 2D potential fields model for seismic profile GUMBO3 (Eddy et al., 2014). The objectives of this study are: 1) to develop a similar model for another seismic profile GUMBO 4 (Christeson, 2014) and derive subsurface properties (densities and magnetic susceptibilities), 2) to compare and contrast the two models, 3) to establish spatial relationship between the two crustal domains. Interpreted seismic velocities for the profiles GUMBO 3 and GUMBO 4 show significant differences, suggesting that these two profiles cross different segments of oceanic crust. The total crustal thickness along GUMBO 3 is much thicker (up to 10 km) than the one for GUMBO 4 (5.7 km). The upper crustal velocity along GUMBO 4 (6.0-6.7 km/s) is significantly higher than the one for GUMBO 3 ( 5.8 km/s). Based our 2D potential fields models along both of the GUMBO lines, we summarize physical properties (seismic velocities, densities and magnetic susceptibilities) for different crustal segments, which are proxies for lithologies. We use our filtered potential fields grids to establish the spatial relationship between these two segments of oceanic crust. The results of our integrated geophysical analysis will be used as additional constraints for the future tectonic reconstruction of

  1. 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.

  2. Rock Magnetic Characterization Through an Intact Sequence of Oceanic Crust, IODP Hole 1256D

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Herrero-Bervera, E.; Acton, G.; Krasá, D.; Rodriguez, S.; Dekkers, M.J.

    2011-01-01

    Coring at Site 1256 (6.736◦N, 91.934◦W, 3635 m water depth) during Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Leg 206 and Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP) Expeditions 309 and 312 successfully sampled a complete section of in situ oceanic crust, including sediments of Seismic Layer 1, lavas and dikes of

  3. Himalayan sedimentary pulses recorded by silicate detritus within a ferromanganese crust from the Central Indian Ocean

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Banakar, V.K.; Galy, A.; Sukumaran, N.P.; Parthiban, G.; Volvaiker, A.Y.

    A Central Indian Ocean deep-water seamount hydrogenous ferromanganese crust (SS663-Crust) contains variable (7-23%) amounts of detrital material (silicate-detritus). Taking into account the growth rate of the authigenic component, the accumulation...

  4. 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.

  5. Structure of young oceanic crust at 13°N on the East Pacific Rise from expanding spread profiles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harding, A. J.; Orcutt, J. A.; Kappus, M. E.; Vera, E. E.; Mutter, J. C.; Buhl, P.; Detrick, R. S.; Brocher, T. M.

    1989-09-01

    We present the results of the analysis of expanding spread profiles (ESPs) collected on and near the axis of the East Pacific Rise at 13°N. These profiles were collected at 0, 1.1, 2.1, 3.6, and 9.5 km from the rise axis, and all but the most distant profile show a distinct low-velocity zone (LVZ) located within layer 3 of the oceanic crust. At the ridge crest, the top of the magma chamber is at the base of layer 2, while 3.6 km off axis, the roof of the LVZ is 1.1 km below the top of layer 3. The profile farthest from the ridge could possibly have a residual LVZ confined to the lower 1.5 km of the crust. The total width of the LVZ, as determined from the ESP data, is at least 6 km, and possibly much greater. This wide LVZ apparently contradicts multichannel seismic data which show cross-axis reflections from the magma chamber with a width of <5 km. We suggest that a resolution of this apparent contradiction lies in a model of the rise axis with a small and transient central magma chamber of high partial melt fraction surrounded by a much larger and permanent region of hot rock with only isolated pockets of partial melt. The ESP data are sensitive to this larger region, while the reflection data accurately map the presence or absence of the central magma chamber with its high impedance contrast. We identify the presence of a layer at the top of the oceanic crust with initial P wave velocities between 2.35 and 2.6 km/s, while the S wave velocity is estimated as being ≤0.8 km/s. The layer thickness lies between 100 and 200 m. These velocities are consistent with previous estimates for the Pacific and recent results for the Atlantic. The thickness of this layer is consistent with that of layer 2A determined from geophysical measurements at Deep Sea Drilling Project hole 504B.

  6. Cerium anomaly variations in ferromanganese nodules and crusts from the Indian Ocean

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Nath, B.N.; Roelandts, I.; Sudhakar, M.; Pluger, W.L.; Balaram, V.

    Fifty analyses of rare earth elements as well as mineralogical studies have been carried out on a suite of manganese nodules and crusts from the Central Indian Basin and the Western Indian Ocean. The aim was to identify the processes controlling...

  7. Pliocene granodioritic knoll with continental crust affinities discovered in the intra-oceanic Izu-Bonin-Mariana Arc: Syntectonic granitic crust formation during back-arc rifting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tani, Kenichiro; Dunkley, Daniel J.; Chang, Qing; Nichols, Alexander R. L.; Shukuno, Hiroshi; Hirahara, Yuka; Ishizuka, Osamu; Arima, Makoto; Tatsumi, Yoshiyuki

    2015-08-01

    A widely held hypothesis is that modern continental crust of an intermediate (i.e. andesitic) bulk composition forms at intra-oceanic arcs through subduction zone magmatism. However, there is a critical paradox in this hypothesis: to date, the dominant granitic rocks discovered in these arcs are tonalite, rocks that are significantly depleted in incompatible (i.e. magma-preferred) elements and do not geochemically and petrographically represent those of the continents. Here we describe the discovery of a submarine knoll, the Daisan-West Sumisu Knoll, situated in the rear-arc region of the intra-oceanic Izu-Bonin-Mariana Arc. Remotely-operated vehicle surveys reveal that this knoll is made up entirely of a 2.6 million year old porphyritic to equigranular granodiorite intrusion with a geochemical signature typical of continental crust. We present a model of granodiorite magma formation that involves partial remelting of enriched mafic rear-arc crust during the initial phase of back-arc rifting, which is supported by the preservation of relic cores inherited from initial rear-arc source rocks within magmatic zircon crystals. The strong extensional tectonic regime at the time of intrusion may have allowed the granodioritic magma to be emplaced at an extremely shallow level, with later erosion of sediment and volcanic covers exposing the internal plutonic body. These findings suggest that rear-arc regions could be the potential sites of continental crust formation in intra-oceanic convergent margins.

  8. Lunar Magma Ocean Crystallization: Constraints from Fractional Crystallization Experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rapp, J. F.; Draper, D. S.

    2015-01-01

    The currently accepted paradigm of lunar formation is that of accretion from the ejecta of a giant impact, followed by crystallization of a global scale magma ocean. This model accounts for the formation of the anorthosite highlands crust, which is globally distributed and old, and the formation of the younger mare basalts which are derived from a source region that has experienced plagioclase extraction. Several attempts at modelling the crystallization of such a lunar magma ocean (LMO) have been made, but our ever-increasing knowledge of the lunar samples and surface have raised as many questions as these models have answered. Geodynamic models of lunar accretion suggest that shortly following accretion the bulk of the lunar mass was hot, likely at least above the solidus]. Models of LMO crystallization that assume a deep magma ocean are therefore geodynamically favorable, but they have been difficult to reconcile with a thick plagioclase-rich crust. A refractory element enriched bulk composition, a shallow magma ocean, or a combination of the two have been suggested as a way to produce enough plagioclase to account for the assumed thickness of the crust. Recently however, geophysical data from the GRAIL mission have indicated that the lunar anorthositic crust is not as thick as was initially estimated, which allows for both a deeper magma ocean and a bulk composition more similar to the terrestrial upper mantle. We report on experimental simulations of the fractional crystallization of a deep (approximately 100km) LMO with a terrestrial upper mantle-like (LPUM) bulk composition. Our experimental results will help to define the composition of the lunar crust and mantle cumulates, and allow us to consider important questions such as source regions of the mare basalts and Mg-suite, the role of mantle overturn after magma ocean crystallization and the nature of KREEP

  9. Structures within the oceanic crust of the central South China Sea basin and their implications for oceanic accretionary processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ding, Weiwei; Sun, Zhen; Dadd, Kelsie; Fang, Yinxia; Li, Jiabiao

    2018-04-01

    Internal structures in mature oceanic crust can elucidate understanding of the processes and mechanism of crustal accretion. In this study, we present two multi-channel seismic (MCS) transects across the northern flank of the South China Sea basin to reveal the internal structures related to Cenozoic tectono-magmatic processes during seafloor spreading. Bright reflectors within the oceanic crust, including the Moho, upper crustal reflectors, and lower crustal reflectors, are clearly imaged in these two transects. The Moho reflection displays varied character in continuity, shape and amplitude from the continental slope area to the abyssal basin, and becomes absent in the central part of the basin where abundant seamounts and seamount chains formed after the cessation of seafloor spreading. Dipping reflectors are distinct in most parts of the MCS data but generally confined to the lower crust above the Moho reflection. These lower crustal reflectors merge downward into the Moho without offsetting it, probably arising from shear zones between the crust and mantle characterized by interstitial melt, although we cannot exclude other possibilities such as brittle faulting or magmatic layering in the local area. A notable feature of these lower crustal reflector events is their opposite inclinations. We suggest the two groups of conjugate lower crustal reflector events observed between magnetic anomalies C11 and C8 were associated with two unusual accretionary processes arising from plate reorganizations with southward ridge jumps.

  10. The OSCAR experiment: using full-waveform inversion in the analysis of young oceanic crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silverton, Akela; Morgan, Joanna; Wilson, Dean; Hobbs, Richard

    2017-04-01

    The OSCAR experiment aims to derive an integrated model to better explain the effects of heat loss and alteration by hydrothermal fluids, associated with the cooling of young oceanic crust at an axial ridge. High-resolution seismic imaging of the sediments and basaltic basement can be used to map fluid flow pathways between the oceanic crust and the surrounding ocean. To obtain these high-resolution images, we undertake full-waveform inversion (FWI), an advanced seismic imaging technique capable of resolving velocity heterogeneities at a wide range of length scales, from background trends to fine-scale geological/crustal detail, in a fully data-driven automated manner. This technology is widely used within the petroleum sector due to its potential to obtain high-resolution P-wave velocity models that lead to improvements in migrated seismic images of the subsurface. Here, we use the P-wave velocity model obtained from travel-time tomography as the starting model in the application of acoustic, time-domain FWI to a multichannel streamer field dataset acquired in the east Pacific along a profile between the Costa Rica spreading centre and the Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) borehole 504B, where the crust is approximately six million years old. FWI iteratively improves the velocity model by minimizing the misfit between the predicted data and the field data. It seeks to find a high-fidelity velocity model that is capable of matching individual seismic waveforms of the original raw field dataset, with an initial focus on matching the low-frequency components of the early arriving energy. Quality assurance methods adopted during the inversion ensure convergence in the direction of the global minimum. We demonstrate that FWI is able to recover fine-scale, high-resolution velocity heterogeneities within the young oceanic crust along the profile. The highly resolved FWI velocity model is useful in the identification of the layer 2A/2B interface and low-velocity layers that

  11. The strontium isotopic composition of seawater, and seawater-oceanic crust interaction

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Spooner, E.T.C.

    1976-01-01

    The 87 Sr/ 86 Sr ratio of seawater strontium (0.7091) is less than the 87 Sr/ 86 Sr ratio of dissolved strontium delivered to the oceans by continental run-off (approximately 0.716). Isotope exchange with strontium isotopically lighter oceanic crust during hydrothermal convection within spreading oceanic ridges can explain this observation. In quantitative terms, the current 87 Sr/ 86 Sr ratio of seawater (0.7091) may be maintained by balancing the continental run-off flux of strontium (0.59 x 10 12 g/yr) against a hydrothermal recirculation flux of 3.6 x 10 12 g/yr, during which the 87 Sr/ 86 Sr ratio of seawater drops by 0.0011. A concomitant mean increase in the 87 Sr/ 86 Sr ratio of the upper 4.5 km of oceanic crust of 0.0010 (0.7029-0.7039) should be produced. This required 87 Sr enrichment has been observed in hydrothermally metamorphosed ophiolitic rocks from the Troodos Massif, Cyprus. The post-Upper Cretaceous increase in the strontium isotopic composition of seawater (approximately 0.7075-0.7091) covaries smoothly with inferred increase in land area. This suggests that during this period the main factor which has caused variability in the 87 Sr/ 86 Sr ratio of seawater strontium could have been variation in the magnitude of the continental run-off flux caused by variation in land area. Variations in land area may themselves have been partly a consequence of variations in global mean sea-floor spreading rate. (Auth.)

  12. Low-Temperature Alteration of the Seafloor: Impacts on Ocean Chemistry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coogan, Laurence A.; Gillis, Kathryn M.

    2018-05-01

    Over 50% of Earth is covered by oceanic crust, the uppermost portion of which is a high-permeability layer of basaltic lavas through which seawater continuously circulates. Fluid flow is driven by heat lost from the oceanic lithosphere; the global fluid flux is dependent on plate creation rates and the thickness and distribution of overlying sediment, which acts as a low-permeability layer impeding seawater access to the crust. Fluid-rock reactions in the crust, and global chemical fluxes, depend on the average temperature in the aquifer, the fluid flux, and the composition of seawater. The average temperature in the aquifer depends largely on bottom water temperature and, to a lesser extent, on the average seafloor sediment thickness. Feedbacks between off-axis chemical fluxes and their controls may play an important role in modulating ocean chemistry and planetary climate on long timescales, but more work is needed to quantify these feedbacks.

  13. Costa Rica Rift Revisited: Constraints on Shallow and Deep Hydrothermal Circulation in Oceanic Crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, E. E.; Becker, K.; He, J.

    2002-12-01

    New heat-flow observations made along two seismic reflection profiles on 6 Ma crust of the Costa Rica Rift flank show an inverse correlation between heat flow and sediment thickness similar to that observed on other sedimented ridges and young ridge flanks. Extrapolation of the seafloor heat-flow values to the top of the igneous crust - justified by comparing seafloor and borehole determinations where observations are colocated - show the surface of the igneous crust to be of uniform temperature despite large local sediment thickness variations. This is consistent with observations made at DSDP/ODP Holes 504B and 896A where basement temperatures are observed to be nearly identical, also despite contrasting sediment thicknesses. Efficient lateral heat exchange via vigorous crustal hydrothermal circulation is required to create the degree of uniformity inferred and observed. Permeability measurements at the two drill sites show that this vigorous circulation may be restricted to as little as the uppermost tens of m of the crust. Permeability determined deeper in Hole 504B is too low to permit thermally significant flow, although temperature logs suggest that thermally significant flow extends throughout the 2 km section penetrated at Site 504, presumably via pathways not intersected by the borehole. The laterally uniform temperatures in the uppermost igneous crust here and elsewhere are remarkable given the small apparent depth-extent of the circulation that so efficiently distributes heat. While certainly not as vigorous, the circulation at depth suggested by the temperature logs at Site 504 is also noteworthy; unfortunately the observation cannot be generalized because of the lack of other deep crustal holes that could permit direct observations, and the lack of a method for inferring deep hydrothermal structure.

  14. Composition, characteristics and genesis of the ferromanganese crusts and nodules from the Indian and Pacific oceans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, S.; Peng, X.

    2017-12-01

    Ferromanganese crusts and nodules are considered to be one of the most important players in the geochemical cycling of the oceans. However, the lack of integrated studies affects our explicit understanding of the mineralization, characteristics and genesis of the crusts and nodules. In this study, the mineralogy, geochemistry and molecular biology in ferromanganese crusts and nodules obtained from various oceans were explored. The crusts/nodules are composed predominantly of vernadite (δ-MnO2) and amorphous Fe oxides/hydroxides. The shale normalized negative Ce-anomalies, characteristic of hydrothermal oxides, are retained in JL and TVG6. In hydrogenous oxides, the positive Ce-anomalies were found in 21V-S7 and DY119-4. The iron isotopic compositions range between -0.543 and -0.002‰ in δ56Fe IRMM14. Using molecular 16S rRNA gene techniques (clone libraries, real-time PCR) we show that nodules (JL-B and TVG6) provide a suitable habitat for prokaryotes with an abundant and diverse prokaryotic community dominated by Mn(II)-oxidizing bacteria (Pseudomonas putida GB-1). These bacteria were not detected in the crust samples (21V-S7 and DY119-4). The results suggest that a biologically driven Manganese cycle inside the nodule that may be relevant to their formation.

  15. 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.

  16. Gravity anomalies and associated tectonic features over the Indian Peninsular Shield and adjoining ocean basins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mishra, D. C.; Arora, K.; Tiwari, V. M.

    2004-02-01

    A combined gravity map over the Indian Peninsular Shield (IPS) and adjoining oceans brings out well the inter-relationships between the older tectonic features of the continent and the adjoining younger oceanic features. The NW-SE, NE-SW and N-S Precambrian trends of the IPS are reflected in the structural trends of the Arabian Sea and the Bay of Bengal suggesting their probable reactivation. The Simple Bouguer anomaly map shows consistent increase in gravity value from the continent to the deep ocean basins, which is attributed to isostatic compensation due to variations in the crustal thickness. A crustal density model computed along a profile across this region suggests a thick crust of 35-40 km under the continent, which reduces to 22/20-24 km under the Bay of Bengal with thick sediments of 8-10 km underlain by crustal layers of density 2720 and 2900/2840 kg/m 3. Large crustal thickness and trends of the gravity anomalies may suggest a transitional crust in the Bay of Bengal up to 150-200 km from the east coast. The crustal thickness under the Laxmi ridge and east of it in the Arabian Sea is 20 and 14 km, respectively, with 5-6 km thick Tertiary and Mesozoic sediments separated by a thin layer of Deccan Trap. Crustal layers of densities 2750 and 2950 kg/m 3 underlie sediments. The crustal density model in this part of the Arabian Sea (east of Laxmi ridge) and the structural trends similar to the Indian Peninsular Shield suggest a continent-ocean transitional crust (COTC). The COTC may represent down dropped and submerged parts of the Indian crust evolved at the time of break-up along the west coast of India and passage of Reunion hotspot over India during late Cretaceous. The crustal model under this part also shows an underplated lower crust and a low density upper mantle, extending over the continent across the west coast of India, which appears to be related to the Deccan volcanism. The crustal thickness under the western Arabian Sea (west of the Laxmi ridge

  17. S-to-P Conversions from Mid-mantle Slow Scatterers in Slab Regions: Observations of Deep/Stagnated Oceanic Crust?

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Xiaobo; Zheng, Yixian

    2018-02-01

    The fate of a subducted slab is a key ingredient in the context of plate tectonics, yet it remains enigmatic especially in terms of its crustal component. In this study, our efforts are devoted to resolve slab-related structures in the mid-mantle below eastern Indonesia, the Izu-Bonin region, and the Peru area by employing seismic array analysing techniques on high-frequency waveform data from F-net in Japan and the Alaska regional network and the USArray in North America. A pronounced arrival after the direct P wave is observed in the recordings of four deep earthquakes (depths greater than 400 km) from three subduction systems including the Philippines, the Izu-Bonin, and the Peru. This later arrival displays a slightly lower slowness compared to the direct P wave and its back-azimuth deviates somewhat from the great-circle direction. We explain it as an S-to-P conversion at a deep scatterer below the sources in the source region. In total, five scatterers are seen at depths ranging from 930 to 1500 km. Those scatterers appear to be characterised by an 7 km-thick low-velocity layer compared to the ambient mantle. Combined evidence from published mineral physical analysis suggests that past subducted oceanic crust, possibly fragmented, is most likely responsible for these thin-layer compositional heterogeneities trapped in the mid-mantle beneath the study regions. Our observations give a clue to the potential fate of subducted oceanic crust.

  18. In-situ detection of microbial life in the deep biosphere in igneous ocean crust

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Everett Cosio Salas

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available The deep biosphere is a major frontier to science. Recent studies have shown the presence and activity of cells in deep marine sediments and in the continental deep biosphere. Volcanic lavas in the deep ocean subsurface, through which substantial fluid flow occurs, present another potentially massive deep biosphere. We present results from the deployment of a novel in-situ logging tool designed to detect microbial life harbored in a deep, native, borehole environment within igneous oceanic crust, using deep ultraviolet native fluorescence spectroscopy. Results demonstrate the predominance of microbial-like signatures within the borehole environment, with densities in the range of 105 cells/mL. Based on transport and flux models, we estimate that such a concentration of microbial cells could not be supported by transport through the crust, suggesting in situ growth of these communities.

  19. In situ Detection of Microbial Life in the Deep Biosphere in Igneous Ocean Crust.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salas, Everett C; Bhartia, Rohit; Anderson, Louise; Hug, William F; Reid, Ray D; Iturrino, Gerardo; Edwards, Katrina J

    2015-01-01

    The deep biosphere is a major frontier to science. Recent studies have shown the presence and activity of cells in deep marine sediments and in the continental deep biosphere. Volcanic lavas in the deep ocean subsurface, through which substantial fluid flow occurs, present another potentially massive deep biosphere. We present results from the deployment of a novel in situ logging tool designed to detect microbial life harbored in a deep, native, borehole environment within igneous oceanic crust, using deep ultraviolet native fluorescence spectroscopy. Results demonstrate the predominance of microbial-like signatures within the borehole environment, with densities in the range of 10(5) cells/mL. Based on transport and flux models, we estimate that such a concentration of microbial cells could not be supported by transport through the crust, suggesting in situ growth of these communities.

  20. Porosity, Fracturing and Alteration of Young Oceanic Crust: New Seismic Analyses at Borehole 504B

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregory, E. P. M.; Hobbs, R. W.; Peirce, C.; Wilson, D. J.

    2017-12-01

    DSDP/ODP borehole 504B, drilled 2111 m into 6.9 Ma oceanic crust, provides in-situ core and logging measurements of the lithology, fracturing and porosity of crust originally formed at the Costa Rica Rift and its subsequent alteration by hydrothermal fluids. A recent active seismic survey over the borehole and surrounding area reveals wider spatial variations in velocity that can be related to this porosity and fracturing. Over 10,000 airgun shots were fired in a 30 x 30 km grid over the borehole region, using both high-frequency and low-frequency airgun arrays. The shots were recorded on a 4.5 km-long streamer and 24 ocean-bottom seismographs, each equipped with a three-component geophone and an hydrophone. A vertical hydrophone array recorded the downgoing source wavelet, and underway gravity, magnetic field and multibeam bathymetry data were also recorded. This combined dataset enables the most comprehensive geophysical analysis of this area of crust to date, while the ground-truthing provided by 504B enables us to address the questions of what do the seismic oceanic crustal layers represent and what controls their characteristics as the crust ages? Wide-angle seismic modelling with a Monte Carlo based uncertainty analysis reveals new 2D and 3D Vp and Vs models of the area, which show relatively homogeneous crust around borehole 504B, and place the seismic layer 2B/2C, and seismic layer 2/3 boundaries coincident with fracturing and alteration fronts rather than the lithological boundaries between lavas and dykes, and dykes and gabbros, respectively. Analysis of Poisson's ratio, seismic anisotropy and particle motions reveal patterns in fracturing and porosity across the survey area, and locate possible fossilised hydrothermal circulation cells. These cells appear to have influenced the porosity of the crust through alteration and mineralisation processes, with faults inherited from initial crustal accretion influencing basement topographic highs and providing

  1. Transformation of juvenile Izu-Bonin-Mariana oceanic arc into mature continental crust: An example from the Neogene Izu collision zone granitoid plutons, Central Japan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saito, Satoshi; Tani, Kenichiro

    2017-04-01

    Granitic rocks (sensulato) are major constituents of upper continental crust. Recent reviews reveal that the average composition of Phanerozoic upper continental crust is granodioritic. Although oceanic arcs are regarded as a site producing continental crust material in an oceanic setting, intermediate to felsic igneous rocks occurring in modern oceanic arcs are dominantly tonalitic to trondhjemitic in composition and have lower incompatible element contents than the average upper continental crust. Therefore, juvenile oceanic arcs require additional processes in order to get transformed into mature continental crust enriched in incompatible elements. Neogene granitoid plutons are widely exposed in the Izu Collision Zone in central Japan, where the northern end of the Izu-Bonin-Mariana (IBM) arc (juvenile oceanic arc) has been colliding with the Honshu arc (mature island arc) since Middle Miocene. The plutons in this area are composed of various types of granitoids ranging from tonalite to trondhjemite, granodiorite, monzogranite and granite. Three main granitoid plutons are distributed in this area: Tanzawa plutonic complex, Kofu granitic complex, and Kaikomagatake granitoid pluton. Tanzawa plutonic complex is dominantly composed of tonalite and trondhjemite and characterized by low concentration of incompatible elements and shows geochemical similarity with modern juvenile oceanic arcs. In contrast, Kofu granitic complex and Kaikomagatake granitoid pluton consists mainly of granodiorite, monzogranite and granite and their incompatible element abundances are comparable to the average upper continental crust. Previous petrogenetic studies on these plutons suggested that (1) the Tanzawa plutonic complex formed by lower crustal anatexis of juvenile basaltic rocks occurring in the IBM arc, (2) the Kofu granitic complex formed by anatexis of 'hybrid lower crust' comprising of both basaltic rocks of the IBM arc and metasedimentary rocks of the Honshu arc, and (3) the

  2. Sulfide enrichment at an oceanic crust-mantle transition zone: Kane Megamullion (23°N, MAR)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ciazela, Jakub; Koepke, Juergen; Dick, Henry J. B.; Botcharnikov, Roman; Muszynski, Andrzej; Lazarov, Marina; Schuth, Stephan; Pieterek, Bartosz; Kuhn, Thomas

    2018-06-01

    The Kane Megamullion oceanic core complex located along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge (23°30‧N, 45°20‧W) exposes lower crust and upper mantle directly on the ocean floor. We studied chalcophile elements and sulfides in the ultramafic and mafic rocks of the crust-mantle transition and the mantle underneath. We determined mineralogical and elemental composition and the Cu isotope composition of the respective sulfides along with the mineralogical and elemental composition of the respective serpentines. The rocks of the crust-mantle transition zone (i.e., plagioclase harzburgite, peridotite-gabbro contacts, and dunite) overlaid by troctolites are by one order of magnitude enriched in several chalcophile elements with respect to the spinel harzburgites of the mantle beneath. Whereas the range of Cu concentrations in spinel harzburgites is 7-69 ppm, the Cu concentrations are highly elevated in plagioclase harzburgites with a range of 90-209 ppm. The zones of the peridotite-gabbro contacts are even more enriched, exhibiting up to 305 ppm Cu and highly elevated concentrations of As, Zn, Ga, Sb and Tl. High Cu concentrations show pronounced correlation with bulk S concentrations at the crust-mantle transition zone implying an enrichment process in this horizon of the oceanic lithosphere. We interpret this enrichment as related to melt-mantle reaction, which is extensive in crust-mantle transition zones. In spite of the ubiquitous serpentinization of primary rocks, we found magmatic chalcopyrites [CuFeS2] as inclusions in plagioclase as well as associated with pentlandite [(Fe,Ni)9S8] and pyrrhotite [Fe1-xS] in polysulfide grains. These chalcopyrites show a primary magmatic δ65Cu signature ranging from -0.04 to +0.29 ‰. Other chalcopyrites have been dissolved during serpentinization. Due to the low temperature (enrichment, increased sulfide modes, and potentially formation of small sulfide deposits could be expected globally along the petrological Moho.

  3. 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.

  4. Millennial-scale ocean acidification and late Quaternary

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Riding, Dr Robert E [University of Tennessee (UT); Liang, Liyuan [ORNL; Braga, Dr Juan Carlos [Universidad de Granada, Departamento de Estratigrafıa y Paleontologıa, Granada, Spain

    2014-01-01

    Ocean acidification by atmospheric carbon dioxide has increased almost continuously since the last glacial maximum (LGM), 21 000 years ago. It is expected to impair tropical reef development, but effects on reefs at the present day and in the recent past have proved difficult to evaluate. We present evidence that acidification has already significantly reduced the formation of calcified bacterial crusts in tropical reefs. Unlike major reef builders such as coralline algae and corals that more closely control their calcification, bacterial calcification is very sensitive to ambient changes in carbonate chemistry. Bacterial crusts in reef cavities have declined in thickness over the past 14 000 years with largest reduction occurring 12 000 10 000 years ago. We interpret this as an early effect of deglacial ocean acidification on reef calcification and infer that similar crusts were likely to have been thicker when seawater carbonate saturation was increased during earlier glacial intervals, and thinner during interglacials. These changes in crust thickness could have substantially affected reef development over glacial cycles, as rigid crusts significantly strengthen framework and their reduction would have increased the susceptibility of reefs to biological and physical erosion. Bacterial crust decline reveals previously unrecognized millennial-scale acidification effects on tropical reefs. This directs attention to the role of crusts in reef formation and the ability of bioinduced calcification to reflect changes in seawater chemistry. It also provides a long-term context for assessing anticipated anthropogenic effects.

  5. Microbial decomposition of marine dissolved organic matter in cool oceanic crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shah Walter, Sunita R.; Jaekel, Ulrike; Osterholz, Helena; Fisher, Andrew T.; Huber, Julie A.; Pearson, Ann; Dittmar, Thorsten; Girguis, Peter R.

    2018-05-01

    Marine dissolved organic carbon (DOC) is one of the largest active reservoirs of reduced carbon on Earth. In the deep ocean, DOC has been described as biologically recalcitrant and has a radiocarbon age of 4,000 to 6,000 years, which far exceeds the timescale of ocean overturning. However, abiotic removal mechanisms cannot account for the full magnitude of deep-ocean DOC loss. Deep-ocean water circulates at low temperatures through volcanic crust on ridge flanks, but little is known about the associated biogeochemical processes and carbon cycling. Here we present analyses of DOC in fluids from two borehole observatories installed in crustal rocks west of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, and show that deep-ocean DOC is removed from these cool circulating fluids. The removal mechanism is isotopically selective and causes a shift in specific features of molecular composition, consistent with microbe-mediated oxidation. We suggest organic molecules with an average radiocarbon age of 3,200 years are bioavailable to crustal microbes, and that this removal mechanism may account for at least 5% of the global loss of DOC in the deep ocean. Cool crustal circulation probably contributes to maintaining the deep ocean as a reservoir of `aged' and refractory DOC by discharging the surviving organic carbon constituents that are molecularly degraded and depleted in 14C and 13C into the deep ocean.

  6. Structure and Geochemistry of the Continental-Oceanic Crust Boundary of the Red Sea and the Rifted Margin of Western Arabia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dilek, Y.; Furnes, H.; Schoenberg, R.

    2009-12-01

    The continental-oceanic crust boundary and an incipient oceanic crust of the Red Sea opening are exposed within the Arabian plate along a narrow zone of the Tihama Asir coastal plain in SW Saudi Arabia. Dike swarms, layered gabbros, granophyres and basalts of the 22 Ma Tihama Asir (TA) continental margin ophiolite represent products of magmatic differentiation formed during the initial stages of rifting between the African and Arabian plates. Nearly 4-km-wide zone of NW-trending sheeted dikes are the first products of mafic magmatism associated with incipient oceanic crust formation following the initial continental breakup. Gabbro intrusions are composed of cpx-ol-gabbro, cpx-gabbro, and norite/troctolite, and are crosscut by fine-grained basaltic dikes. Granophyre bodies intrude the sheeted dike swarms and are locally intrusive into the gabbros. Regional Bouger gravity anomalies suggest that the Miocene mafic crust represented by the TA complex extends westward beneath the coastal plain sedimentary rocks and the main trough of the Red Sea. The TA complex marks an incipient Red Sea oceanic crust that was accreted to the NE side of the newly formed continental rift in the earliest stages of seafloor spreading. Its basaltic to trachyandesitic lavas and dikes straddle the subalkaline-mildly alkaline boundary. Incompatible trace element relationships (e.g. Zr-Ti, Zr-P) indicate two distinct populations. The REE concentrations show an overall enrichment compared to N-MORB; light REEs are enriched over the heavy ones ((La/Yb)n > 1), pointing to an E-MORB influence. Nd-isotope data show ɛNd values ranging from +4 to +8, supporting an E-MORB melt source. The relatively large variations in ɛNd values also suggest various degrees of involvement of continental crust during ascent and emplacement, or by mixing of another mantle source.

  7. First investigation of the microbiology of the deepest layer of ocean crust.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olivia U Mason

    Full Text Available The gabbroic layer comprises the majority of ocean crust. Opportunities to sample this expansive crustal environment are rare because of the technological demands of deep ocean drilling; thus, gabbroic microbial communities have not yet been studied. During the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program Expeditions 304 and 305, igneous rock samples were collected from 0.45-1391.01 meters below seafloor at Hole 1309D, located on the Atlantis Massif (30 °N, 42 °W. Microbial diversity in the rocks was analyzed by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis and sequencing (Expedition 304, and terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism, cloning and sequencing, and functional gene microarray analysis (Expedition 305. The gabbroic microbial community was relatively depauperate, consisting of a low diversity of proteobacterial lineages closely related to Bacteria from hydrocarbon-dominated environments and to known hydrocarbon degraders, and there was little evidence of Archaea. Functional gene diversity in the gabbroic samples was analyzed with a microarray for metabolic genes ("GeoChip", producing further evidence of genomic potential for hydrocarbon degradation--genes for aerobic methane and toluene oxidation. Genes coding for anaerobic respirations, such as nitrate reduction, sulfate reduction, and metal reduction, as well as genes for carbon fixation, nitrogen fixation, and ammonium-oxidation, were also present. Our results suggest that the gabbroic layer hosts a microbial community that can degrade hydrocarbons and fix carbon and nitrogen, and has the potential to employ a diversity of non-oxygen electron acceptors. This rare glimpse of the gabbroic ecosystem provides further support for the recent finding of hydrocarbons in deep ocean gabbro from Hole 1309D. It has been hypothesized that these hydrocarbons might originate abiotically from serpentinization reactions that are occurring deep in the Earth's crust, raising the possibility that the lithic

  8. Intermediate crust (IC); its construction at continent edges, distinctive epeirogenic behaviour and identification as sedimentary basins within continents: new light on pre-oceanic plate motions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osmaston, Miles F.

    2014-05-01

    Introduction. The plate tectonics paradigm currently posits that the Earth has only two kinds of crust - continental and oceanic - and that the former may be stretched to form sedimentary basins or the latter may be modified by arc or collision until it looks continental. But global analysis of the dynamics of actual plate motions for the past 150 Ma indicates [1 - 3] that continental tectospheres must be immensely thicker and rheologically stiffer than previously thought; almost certainly too thick to be stretched with the forces available. In the extreme case of cratons, these tectospheric keels evidently extend to 600 km or more [2, 3]. This thick-plate behaviour is attributable, not to cooling but to a petrological 'stiffening' effect, associated with a loss of water-weakening of the mineral crystals, which also applies to the hitherto supposedly mobile LVZ below MORs [4, 5]. The corresponding thick-plate version of the mid-ocean ridge (MOR) process [6 - 8], replacing the divergent mantle flow model, has a deep, narrow wall-accreting axial crack which not only provides the seismic anisotropy beneath the flanks but also brings two outstanding additional benefits:- (i) why, at medium to fast spreading rates, MOR axes become straight and orthogonally segmented [6], (ii) not being driven by body forces, it can achieve the sudden jumps of axis, spreading-rate and direction widely present in the ocean-floor record. Furthermore, as we will illustrate, the crack walls push themselves apart at depth by a thermodynamic mechanism, so the plates are not being pulled apart. So the presence of this process at a continental edge would not imply the application of extensional force to the margin. Intermediate Crust (IC). In seeking to resolve the paradox that superficially extensional structures are often seen at margins we will first consider how this MOR process would be affected by the heavy concurrent sedimentation to be expected when splitting a mature continent. I reason

  9. Hess Deep Interactive Lab: Exploring the Structure and Formation of the Oceanic Crust through Hands-On Models and Online Tools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurtz, N.; Marks, N.; Cooper, S. K.

    2014-12-01

    Scientific ocean drilling through the International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) has contributed extensively to our knowledge of Earth systems science. However, many of its methods and discoveries can seem abstract and complicated for students. Collaborations between scientists and educators/artists to create accurate yet engaging demonstrations and activities have been crucial to increasing understanding and stimulating interest in fascinating geological topics. One such collaboration, which came out of Expedition 345 to the Hess Deep Rift, resulted in an interactive lab to explore sampling rocks from the usually inacessible lower oceanic crust, offering an insight into the geological processes that form the structure of the Earth's crust. This Hess Deep Interactive Lab aims to explain several significant discoveries made by oceanic drilling utilizing images of actual thin sections and core samples recovered from IODP expeditions. . Participants can interact with a physical model to learn about the coring and drilling processes, and gain an understanding of seafloor structures. The collaboration of this lab developed as a need to explain fundamental notions of the ocean crust formed at fast-spreading ridges. A complementary interactive online lab can be accessed at www.joidesresolution.org for students to engage further with these concepts. This project explores the relationship between physical and on-line models to further understanding, including what we can learn from the pros and cons of each.

  10. Total Sediment Thickness of the World's Oceans & Marginal Seas

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — A digital total-sediment-thickness database for the world's oceans and marginal seas has been compiled by the NOAA National Geophysical Data Center (NGDC). The data...

  11. Pito Deep reveals spatial/temporal variability of accretionary processes in the lower oceanic crust at fast-spread MOR

    Science.gov (United States)

    John, B. E.; Cheadle, M. J.; Gee, J. S.; Coogan, L. A.; Gillis, K. M.

    2017-12-01

    During January and February 2017, the 42-day RV Atlantis PMaG cruise mapped and sampled in-situ fast spread lower crust for 35 km along a flow line at Pito Deep Rift (northeastern Easter microplate). There, ridge-perpendicular escarpments bound Pito Deep and expose up to 3 km sections of crust parallel to the paleo-spreading direction, providing a unique opportunity to test models for the architecture of fast spread lower ocean crust (the plutonic section). Shipboard operations included a >57,000 km2 multi-beam survey; ten Sentry dives over 70 km2 (nominal m-scale resolution) to facilitate acquisition of detailed magnetic and bathymetric data, and optimize Jason II dive siting for rock sampling and geologic mapping; nine Jason II dives in 4 areas, recovering >400 samples of gabbroic lower crust, of which 80% are approximately oriented. Combined Sentry mapping and Jason II sampling and imaging of one area, provides the most detailed documentation of in situ gabbroic crust (>3 km2 of seafloor, over 1000+m vertical section) ever completed. Significantly, the area exposes distinct lateral variation in rock type: in the west 100m of Fe-Ti oxide rich gabbroic rocks overly gabbro and olivine gabbro; however, to the east, exposures of primitive, layered troctolitic rocks extend to within 100m below the dike-gabbro transition. Equivalent troctolitic rocks are found 13 km to the southeast parallel to a flow line, implying shallow primitive rocks are a characteristic feature of EPR lower crust at this location. The high-level position of troctolitic rocks is best explained by construction in a shallow, near steady-state melt lens at a ridge segment center, with some form of gabbro glacier flow active during formation of at least the uppermost lower ocean crust (Perk et al., 2007). Lateral variation in rock type (adjacent oxide gabbro, gabbro, olivine-rich gabbro and troctolite) over short distances taken with complexity in magmatic fabric orientation (mineral and grain size

  12. Opening of the Central Atlantic Ocean: Implications for Geometric Rifting and Asymmetric Initial Seafloor Spreading after Continental Breakup

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klingelhoefer, F.; Biari, Y.; Sahabi, M.; Funck, T.; Benabdellouahed, M.; Schnabel, M.; Reichert, C. J.; Gutscher, M. A.; Bronner, A.; Austin, J. A., Jr.

    2017-12-01

    The structure of conjugate passive margins provides information about rifting styles, the initial phases of the opening of an ocean and the formation of its associated sedimentary basins. The study of the deep structure of conjugate passive continental margins combined with precise plate kinematic reconstructions can provide constraints on the mechanisms of rifting and formation of initial oceanic crust. In this study the Central Atlantic conjugate margins are compared, based on compilation of wide-angle seismic profiles from the NW-Africa Nova Scotian and US passive margins. Plate cinematic reconstructions were used to place the profiles in the position at opening and at the M25 magnetic anomaly. The patterns of volcanism, crustal thickness, geometry, and seismic velocities in the transition zone. suggest symmetric rifting followed by asymmetric oceanic crustal accretion. Conjugate profiles in the southern Central Atlantic image differences in the continental crustal thickness. While profiles on the eastern US margin are characterized by thick layers of magmatic underplating, no such underplate was imaged along the NW-African continental margin. It has been proposed that these volcanic products form part of the CAMP (Central Atlantic Magmatic Province). In the north, two wide-angle seismic profiles acquired in exactly conjugate positions show that the crustal geometry of the unthinned continental crust and the necking zone are nearly symmetric. A region including seismic velocities too high to be explained by either continental or oceanic crust is imaged along the Nova Scotia margin off Eastern Canada, corresponding on the African side to an oceanic crust with slightly elevated velocities. These might result from asymmetric spreading creating seafloor by faulting the existing lithosphere on the Canadian side and the emplacement of magmatic oceanic crust including pockets of serpentinite on the Moroccan margin. A slightly elevated crustal thickness along the

  13. A Low Viscosity Lunar Magma Ocean Forms a Stratified Anorthitic Flotation Crust With Mafic Poor and Rich Units: Lunar Magma Ocean Viscosity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dygert, Nick [Department of Geological Sciences, Jackson School of Geosciences, University of Texas at Austin, Austin TX USA; Planetary Geosciences Institute, Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Knoxville TN USA; Lin, Jung-Fu [Department of Geological Sciences, Jackson School of Geosciences, University of Texas at Austin, Austin TX USA; Marshall, Edward W. [Department of Geological Sciences, Jackson School of Geosciences, University of Texas at Austin, Austin TX USA; Kono, Yoshio [HPCAT, Geophysical Laboratory, Carnegie Institution of Washington, Argonne IL USA; Gardner, James E. [Department of Geological Sciences, Jackson School of Geosciences, University of Texas at Austin, Austin TX USA

    2017-11-21

    Much of the lunar crust is monomineralic, comprising >98% plagioclase. The prevailing model argues the crust accumulated as plagioclase floated to the surface of a solidifying lunar magma ocean (LMO). Whether >98% pure anorthosites can form in a flotation scenario is debated. An important determinant of the efficiency of plagioclase fractionation is the viscosity of the LMO liquid, which was unconstrained. Here we present results from new experiments conducted on a late LMO-relevant ferrobasaltic melt. The liquid has an exceptionally low viscosity of 0.22 $+0.11\\atop{-0.19}$to 1.45 $+0.46\\atop{-0.82}$ Pa s at experimental conditions (1,300–1,600°C; 0.1–4.4 GPa) and can be modeled by an Arrhenius relation. Extrapolating to LMO-relevant temperatures, our analysis suggests a low viscosity LMO would form a stratified flotation crust, with the oldest units containing a mafic component and with very pure younger units. Old, impure crust may have been buried by lower crustal diapirs of pure anorthosite in a serial magmatism scenario.

  14. Seismic Velocity Variation and Evolution of the Upper Oceanic Crust across the Mid-Atlantic Ridge at 1.3°S

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jian, H.; Singh, S. C.

    2017-12-01

    The oceanic crust that covers >70% of the solid earth is formed at mid-ocean ridges, but get modified as it ages. Understanding the evolution of oceanic crust requires investigations of crustal structures that extend from zero-age on the ridge axis to old crust. In this study, we analyze a part of a 2000-km-long seismic transect that crosses the Mid-Atlantic Ridge segment at 1.3°S, south of the Chain transform fault. The seismic data were acquired using a 12-km-long multi-sensor streamer and dense air-gun shots. Using a combination of downward continuation and seismic tomography methods, we have derived a high-resolution upper crustal velocity structure down to 2-2.5 km depth below the seafloor, from the ridge axis to 3.5 Ma on both sides of the ridge axis. The results demonstrate that velocities increase at all depths in the upper crust as the crust ages, suggesting that hydrothermal precipitations seal the upper crustal pore spaces. This effect is most significant in layer 2A, causing a velocity increase of 0.5-1 km/s after 1-1.5 Ma, beyond which the velocity increase is very small. Furthermore, the results exhibit a significant decrease in both the frequency and amplitude of the low-velocity anomalies associated with faults beyond 1-1.5 Ma, when faults become inactive, suggesting a linkage between the sealing of fault space and the extinction of hydrothermal activity. Besides, the off-axis velocities are systematically higher on the eastern side of the ridge axis compared to on the western side, suggesting that a higher hydrothermal activity should exist on the outside-corner ridge flank than on the inside-corner flank. While the tomography results shown here cover 0-3.5 Ma crust, the ongoing research will further extend the study area to older crust and also incorporating pre-stack migration and full waveform inversion methods to improve the seismic structure.

  15. Metabolic Activity and Biosignatures of Microbes in the Lower Ocean Crust of Atlantis Bank, IODP Expedition 360

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wee, S. Y.; Edgcomb, V. P.; Burgaud, G.; Klein, F.; Schubotz, F.; Yvon-Lewis, S. A.; Sylvan, J. B.

    2017-12-01

    International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) Expedition 360 represents the first leg of a multi-phase drilling program, SloMo, aimed at investigating the nature of the lower crust and Moho at slow spreading ridges. The goal of Expedition 360 was to recover a representative transect of the lower oceanic crust formed at Atlantis Bank, an oceanic core complex on the SW Indian Ridge. Recovered cores were primarily gabbro and olivine gabbro, which may potentially host serpentinization reactions and associated microbial life. Our goal was to sample this subseafloor environment and determine quantity, diversity and metabolic capabilities of any resident microbial life. Hole U1473A was drilled during Expedition 360 down to 790 m below seafloor and samples for detection of microbial communities and microbial biosignatures were collected throughout. We present here quantification of microbial biomass via fluorescence microscopy, preliminary analysis of nutrient addition experiments, data from sequencing of microbial 16S rRNA genes, analysis of microbial lipids, and data from Raman spectra of subsurface isolates. We initiated and sampled 12 nutrient addition experiments from 71-745 mbsf by adding sampled rocks to artificial seawater with no additions, added ammonium, added ammonium plus phosphate, and added organic acids. In nearly all of the experiment bottles, methane was detected when samples were collected at six months and again after one year of incubation. Phosphate in the incubations was drawn down, indicating active microbial metabolism, and archaeal lipids from in situ samples indicate the presence of methanogens, corroborating the likelihood of methanogens as the source of detected methane in the nutrient addition incubations. Altogether, the interdisciplinary approach used here provides a peek into life in the subseafloor upper ocean crust.

  16. Controls on thallium uptake during hydrothermal alteration of the upper ocean crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coggon, Rosalind M.; Rehkämper, Mark; Atteck, Charlotte; Teagle, Damon A. H.; Alt, Jeffrey C.; Cooper, Matthew J.

    2014-11-01

    Hydrothermal circulation is a fundamental component of global biogeochemical cycles. However, the magnitude of the high temperature axial hydrothermal fluid flux remains disputed, and the lower temperature ridge flank fluid flux is difficult to quantify. Thallium (Tl) isotopes behave differently in axial compared to ridge flank systems, with Tl near-quantitatively stripped from the intrusive crust by high temperature hydrothermal reactions, but added to the lavas during low temperature reaction with seawater. This contrasting behavior provides a unique approach to determine the fluid fluxes associated with axial and ridge flank environments. Unfortunately, our understanding of the Tl isotopic mass balance is hindered by poor knowledge of the mineralogical, physical and chemical controls on Tl-uptake by the ocean crust. Here we use analyses of basaltic volcanic upper crust from Integrated Ocean Drilling Program Hole U1301B on the Juan de Fuca Ridge flank, combined with published analyses of dredged seafloor basalts and upper crustal basalts from Holes 504B and 896A, to investigate the controls on Tl-uptake by mid-ocean ridge basalts and evaluate when in the evolution of the ridge flank hydrothermal system Tl-uptake occurs. Seafloor basalts indicate an association between basaltic uptake of Tl from cold seawater and uptake of Cs and Rb, which are known to partition into K-rich phases. Although there is no clear relationship between Tl and K contents of seafloor basalts, the data do not rule out the incorporation of at least some Tl into the same minerals as the alkali elements. In contrast, we find no relationship between the Tl content and either the abundance of secondary phyllosilicate minerals, or the K, Cs or Rb contents in upper crustal basalts. We conclude that the uptake of Tl and alkali elements during hydrothermal alteration of the upper crust involves different processes and/or mineral phases compared to those that govern seafloor weathering. Furthermore

  17. The extent of continental crust beneath the Seychelles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammond, J. O. S.; Kendall, J.-M.; Collier, J. S.; Rümpker, G.

    2013-11-01

    The granitic islands of the Seychelles Plateau have long been recognised to overlie continental crust, isolated from Madagascar and India during the formation of the Indian Ocean. However, to date the extent of continental crust beneath the Seychelles region remains unknown. This is particularly true beneath the Mascarene Basin between the Seychelles Plateau and Madagascar and beneath the Amirante Arc. Constraining the size and shape of the Seychelles continental fragment is needed for accurate plate reconstructions of the breakup of Gondwana and has implications for the processes of continental breakup in general. Here we present new estimates of crustal thickness and VP/VS from H-κ stacking of receiver functions from a year long deployment of seismic stations across the Seychelles covering the topographic plateau, the Amirante Ridge and the northern Mascarene Basin. These results, combined with gravity modelling of historical ship track data, confirm that continental crust is present beneath the Seychelles Plateau. This is ˜30-33 km thick, but with a relatively high velocity lower crustal layer. This layer thins southwards from ˜10 km to ˜1 km over a distance of ˜50 km, which is consistent with the Seychelles being at the edge of the Deccan plume prior to its separation from India. In contrast, the majority of the Seychelles Islands away from the topographic plateau show no direct evidence for continental crust. The exception to this is the island of Desroche on the northern Amirante Ridge, where thicker low density crust, consistent with a block of continental material is present. We suggest that the northern Amirantes are likely continental in nature and that small fragments of continental material are a common feature of plume affected continental breakup.

  18. The effect of Rayleigh-Taylor instabilities on the thickness of undifferentiated crust on Kuiper Belt Objects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rubin, Mark E.; Desch, Steven J.; Neveu, Marc

    2014-07-01

    Previous calculations of the internal structure and thermal evolution of Kuiper Belt Objects (KBOs) by Desch et al. (Desch, S.J., Cook, J.C., Doggett, T.C., Porter, S.B. [2009]. Icarus 202, 694-714) have predicted that KBOs should only partially differentiate, with rock and ice separating into a rocky core and icy mantle, below an undifferentiated crust of ice and rock. This crust is thermally insulating and enhances the ability of subsurface liquid to persist within KBOs. A dense rock/ice layer resting on an icy mantle is gravitationally unstable and prone to Rayleigh-Taylor (RT) instabilities, and may potentially overturn. Here we calculate the ability of RT instabilities to act in KBOs, and determine the thickness of undifferentiated crusts. We have used previously calculated growth rates of the RT instability to determine the critical viscosity of ice needed for the RT instability to operate. We calculate the viscosity of ice at the cold temperatures and long timescales relevant to KBOs. We find that crustal overturn is only possible where the temperature exceeds about 150 K, and that RT instabilities cannot act on geological timescales within about 60 km of the surfaces of a KBO like Charon. Although this crustal thickness is less than the 85 km previously calculated by Desch et al. (Desch, S.J., Cook, J.C., Doggett, T.C., Porter, S.B. [2009]. Icarus 202, 694-714), it is still significant, representing ≈25% of the mass of the KBO. We conclude that while RT instabilities may act in KBOs, they do not completely overturn their crusts. We calculate that Saturn’s moon Rhea should only partially differentiate, resulting in a moment of inertia C/MR2≈0.38.

  19. 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.

  20. Platinum group elements and gold in ferromanganese crusts from Afanasiy-Nikitin seamount, equatorial Indian Ocean: Sources and fractionation

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Banakar, V.K.; Hein, J.R.; Rajani, R.P.; Chodankar, A.R.

    The major element relationships in ferromanganese (Fe–Mn) crusts from Afanasiy–Nikitin seamount (ANS), eastern equatorial Indian Ocean, appear to be atypical. High positive correlations (r = 0.99) between Mn/Co and Fe/Co ratios, and lack...

  1. Enceladus's crust as a non-uniform thin shell: I tidal deformations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beuthe, Mikael

    2018-03-01

    The geologic activity at Enceladus's south pole remains unexplained, though tidal deformations are probably the ultimate cause. Recent gravity and libration data indicate that Enceladus's icy crust floats on a global ocean, is rather thin, and has a strongly non-uniform thickness. Tidal effects are enhanced by crustal thinning at the south pole, so that realistic models of tidal tectonics and dissipation should take into account the lateral variations of shell structure. I construct here the theory of non-uniform viscoelastic thin shells, allowing for depth-dependent rheology and large lateral variations of shell thickness and rheology. Coupling to tides yields two 2D linear partial differential equations of the fourth order on the sphere which take into account self-gravity, density stratification below the shell, and core viscoelasticity. If the shell is laterally uniform, the solution agrees with analytical formulas for tidal Love numbers; errors on displacements and stresses are less than 5% and 15%, respectively, if the thickness is less than 10% of the radius. If the shell is non-uniform, the tidal thin shell equations are solved as a system of coupled linear equations in a spherical harmonic basis. Compared to finite element models, thin shell predictions are similar for the deformations due to Enceladus's pressurized ocean, but differ for the tides of Ganymede. If Enceladus's shell is conductive with isostatic thickness variations, surface stresses are approximately inversely proportional to the local shell thickness. The radial tide is only moderately enhanced at the south pole. The combination of crustal thinning and convection below the poles can amplify south polar stresses by a factor of 10, but it cannot explain the apparent time lag between the maximum plume brightness and the opening of tiger stripes. In a second paper, I will study the impact of a non-uniform crust on tidal dissipation.

  2. Partial melting of lower oceanic crust gabbro: Constraints from poikilitic clinopyroxene primocrysts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leuthold, Julien; Lissenberg, C. Johan; O'Driscoll, Brian; Karakas, Ozge; Falloon, Trevor; Klimentyeva, Dina N.; Ulmer, Peter

    2018-03-01

    Successive magma batches underplate, ascend, stall and erupt along spreading ridges, building the oceanic crust. It is therefore important to understand the processes and conditions under which magma differentiates at mid ocean ridges. Although fractional crystallization is considered to be the dominant mechanism for magma differentiation, open-system igneous complexes also experience Melting-Assimilation-Storage-Hybridization (MASH, Hildreth and Moorbath, 1988) processes. Here, we examine crystal-scale records of partial melting in lower crustal gabbroic cumulates from the slow-spreading Atlantic oceanic ridge (Kane Megamullion; collected with Jason ROV) and the fast-spreading East Pacific Rise (Hess Deep; IODP expedition 345). Clinopyroxene oikocrysts in these gabbros preserve marked intra-crystal geochemical variations that point to crystallization-dissolution episodes of the gabbro eutectic assemblage. Kane Megamullion and Hess Deep clinopyroxene core1 primocrysts and their plagioclase inclusions indicate crystallization from high temperature basalt (>1160 and >1200°C, respectively), close to clinopyroxene saturation temperature (fundamental mechanisms for generating the wide compositional variation observed in mid-ocean ridge basalts. We furthermore propose that such processes operate at both slow- and fast-spreading ocean ridges. Thermal numerical modelling shows that the degree of lower crustal partial melting at slow-spreading ridges can locally increase up to 50%, but the overall crustal melt volume is low (less than ca. 5% of total mantle-derived and crustal melts; ca. 20% in fast-spreading ridges).

  3. Chemical Composition of Ferromanganese Crusts in the World Ocean: A Review and Comprehensive Database. U.S. Geological Survey.

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The USGS Ferromanganese Crust data set was compiled by F.T. Manheim and C.M. Lane-Bostwick of the U.S. Geological Survey, Woods Hole, MA. The data set consists of...

  4. OESbathy version 1.0: a method for reconstructing ocean bathymetry with realistic continental shelf-slope-rise structures

    OpenAIRE

    A. Goswami; P. L. Olson; L. A. Hinnov; A. Gnanadesikan

    2015-01-01

    We present a method for reconstructing global ocean bathymetry that uses a plate cooling model for the oceanic lithosphere, the age distribution of the oceanic crust, global oceanic sediment thicknesses, plus shelf-slope-rise structures calibrated at modern active and passive continental margins. Our motivation is to reconstruct realistic ocean bathymetry based on parameterized relationships of present-day variables that can be applied to global oceans in th...

  5. GEOPHYSICAL INVESTIGATIONS OF THE STRUCTURE OF THE EARTH’S CRUST IN THE ATLANTIC OCEAN REGION,

    Science.gov (United States)

    50--100 mgal and then increase to +50--70mgal. The Bouguer isoanomaly lines are denser in the transition zone and a considerable gravity gradient...data has also become more abundent. Investigations to determine relation between Bouguer gravity anomalies and the thickness of the earth’s crust

  6. Total Sediment Thickness of the World's Oceans & Marginal Seas, Version 2

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — NGDC's global ocean sediment thickness grid (Divins, 2003) has been updated for the Australian-Antarctic region (60?? -155?? E, 30?? -70?? S). New seismic reflection...

  7. From magma-poor Ocean Continent Transitions to steady state oceanic spreading: the balance between tectonic and magmatic processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillard, Morgane; Manatschal, Gianreto; Autin, Julia; Decarlis, Alessandro; Sauter, Daniel

    2016-04-01

    The evolution of magma-poor rifted margins is linked to the development of a transition zone whose basement is neither clearly continental nor oceanic. The development of this Ocean-Continent Transition (OCT) is generally associated to the exhumation of serpentinized mantle along one or several detachment faults. That model is supported by numerous observations (IODP wells, dredges, fossil margins) and by numerical modelling. However, if the initiation of detachment faults in a magma-poor setting tends to be better understood by numerous studies in various area, the transition with the first steady state oceanic crust and the associated processes remain enigmatic and poorly studied. Indeed, this latest stage of evolution appears to be extremely gradual and involves strong interactions between tectonic processes and magmatism. Contrary to the proximal part of the exhumed domain where we can observe magmatic activity linked to the exhumation process (exhumation of gabbros, small amount of basalts above the exhumed mantle), in the most distal part the magmatic system appears to be independent and more active. In particular, we can observe large amounts of extrusive material above a previously exhumed and faulted basement (e.g. Alps, Australia-Antarctica margins). It seems that some faults can play the role of feeder systems for the magma in this area. Magmatic underplating is also important, as suggested by basement uplift and anomalously thick crust (e.g. East Indian margin). It results that the transition with the first steady state oceanic crust is marked by the presence of a hybrid basement, composed by exhumed mantle and magmatic material, whose formation is linked to several tectonic and magmatic events. One could argue that this basement is not clearly different from an oceanic basement. However, we consider that true, steady state oceanic crust only exists, if the entire rock association forming the crust is created during a single event, at a localized

  8. The morphostructure of the atlantic ocean floor its development in the meso-cenozoic

    CERN Document Server

    Litvin, V M

    1984-01-01

    The study of the topography and structure of the ocean floor is one of the most important stages in ascertaining the geological structure and history of development of the Earth's oceanic crust. This, in its turn, provides a means for purposeful, scientifically-substantiated prospecting, exploration and development of the mineral resources of the ocean. The Atlantic Ocean has been geologically and geophysically studied to a great extent and many years of investigating its floor have revealed the laws governing the structure of the major forms of its submarine relief (e. g. , the continental shelf, the continental slope, the transition zones, the ocean bed, and the Mid-Oceanic Ridge). The basic features of the Earth's oceanic crust structure, anomalous geophysical fields, and the thickness and structure of its sedimentary cover have also been studied. Based on the investigations of the Atlantic Ocean floor and its surrounding continents, the presently prevalent concept of new global tectonics has appeared. A g...

  9. Toward an Integrated Model for the Composition, Structure, and Physical Properties of the Crust in Icelandic Rift Zones

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelley, D. F.; Panero, W. R.; Barton, M.

    2009-05-01

    The rift zones that extend across Iceland roughly southwest to northeast are the only portion of the mid-Atlantic Ridge that is exposed above sea level. This reflects anomalously high melt productivity in the mantle leading to anomalously thick oceanic crust. There are 30 active volcanic centers in the rift zones. Petrologic studies of the 30 volcanic centers in the active rift zones show that, magmas pond at a mid-crustal level as well as at the base of the crust prior to eruption. The depth of magma chambers at the base of the crust provides an estimate of crustal thickness of (20 ± 2.5 km) in these zones. Melts erupting to the surface directly from chambers at the base of the crust provide one constraint on the composition of the crust because any compositional variations within the crust must be the result of differentiation of these melts. However, the glass compositions indicate that relatively evolved magmas erupted from the deep chambers, suggesting that crystallization of compositionally more primitive magmas also occurred at the base of the crust. Knowledge of crustal thickness, the temperature of melts at the base of the crust, and the compositions of these melts allows development of comprehensive models of the composition, structure and properties of crust within the rift zones. We have developed two end member models: one with variation of mineralogy with depth in the crust due to metamorphism, and one with variation of crustal composition with depth due to fractionation processes. We have also considered models that are plausible combinations of these two end member models. We have calculated well constrained geothermal gradients and used these to predict variations in density, seismic velocity, and bulk modulus with depth. These models which include petrologic and geochemical data are consistent with published geophysical data, therefore provide important constraints on interpretation of geophysical data. In particular, results of this work provide

  10. Mid-Ocean Ridge Melt Supply and Glacial Cycles: A 3D EPR Study of Crustal Thickness, Layer 2A, and Bathymetry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boulahanis, B.; Aghaei, O.; Carbotte, S. M.; Huybers, P. J.; Langmuir, C. H.; Nedimovic, M. R.; Carton, H. D.; Canales, J. P.

    2017-12-01

    Recent studies suggest that eustatic sea level fluctuations induced by glacial cycles in the Pleistocene may influence mantle-melting and volcanic eruptions at mid-ocean ridges (MOR), with models predicting variation in oceanic crustal thickness linked to sea level change. Previous analyses of seafloor bathymetry as a proxy for crustal thickness show significant spectral energy at frequencies linked to Milankovitch cycles of 1/23, 1/41, and 1/100 ky-1, however the effects of faulting in seafloor relief and its spectral characteristics are difficult to separate from climatic signals. Here we investigate the hypothesis of climate driven periodicity in MOR magmatism through spectral analysis, time series comparisons, and statistical characterization of bathymetry data, seismic layer 2A thickness (as a proxy for extrusive volcanism), and seafloor-to-Moho thickness (as a proxy for total magma production). We utilize information from a three-dimensional multichannel seismic study of the East Pacific Rise and its flanks from 9°36`N to 9°57`N. We compare these datasets to the paleoclimate "LR04" benthic δ18O stack. The seismic dataset covers 770 km2 and provides resolution of Moho for 92% of the imaged region. This is the only existing high-resolution 3-D image across oceanic crust, making it ideal for assessing the possibility that glacial cycles modulate magma supply at fast spreading MORs. The layer 2A grid extends 9 km (170 ky) from the ridge axis, while Moho imaging extends to a maximum of 16 km (310 ky). Initial results from the East Pacific Rise show a relationship between sea level and both crustal thickness and sea floor depth, consistent with the hypothesis that magma supply to MORs may be modulated by glacial cycles. Analysis of crustal thickness and bathymetry data reveals spectral peaks at Milankovitch frequencies of 1/100 ky-1 and 1/41 ky-1 where datasets extend sufficiently far from the ridge. The layer 2A grid does not extend sufficiently far from the

  11. Two new ways of mapping sea ice thickness using ocean waves

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wadhams, P.

    2010-12-01

    TWO NEW METHODS OF MAPPING SEA ICE THICKNESS USING OCEAN WAVES. P. Wadhams (1,2), Martin Doble (1,2) and F. Parmiggiani (3) (1) Dept. of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, University of Cambridge, Cambridge CB3 0WA, UK. (2) Laboratoire d’Océanographie de Villefranche, Université Pierre et Marie Curie, 06234 Villefranche-sur-Mer, France (2) ISAC-CNR, Bologna, Italy Two new methods of mapping ice thickness have been recently developed and tested, both making use of the dispersion relation of ocean waves in ice of radically different types. In frazil-pancake ice, a young ice type in which cakes less than 5 m across float in a suspension of individual ice crystals, the propagation of waves has been successfully modelled by treating the ice layer as a highly viscous fluid. The model predicts a shortening of wavelengths within the ice. Two-dimensional Fourier analysis of successive SAR subscenes to track the directional spectrum of a wave field as it enters an ice edge shows that waves do indeed shorten within the ice, and the change has been successfully used to predict the thickness of the frazil-pancake layer. Concurrent shipborne sampling in the Antarctic has shown that the method is accurate, and we now propose its use throughout the important frazil-pancake regimes in the world ocean (Antarctic circumpolar ice edge zone, Greenland Sea, Bering Sea and others). A radically different type of dispersion occurs when ocean waves enter the continuous icefields of the central Arctic, when they couple with the elastic ice cover to propagate as a flexural-gravity wave. A two-axis tiltmeter array has been used to measure the resulting change in the dispersion relation for long ocean swell (15-30 s) originating from storms in the Greenland Sea. The dispersion relation is slightly different from swell in the open ocean, so if two such arrays are placed a substantial distance (100s of km) apart and used to observe the changing wave period of arrivals from a given

  12. A Crystallization-Temperature Profile Through Paleo-Oceanic Crust (Wadi Gideah Transect, Oman Ophiolite): Application of the REE-in-Plagioclase-Clinopyroxene Partitioning Thermometer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, S.; Hasenclever, J.; Garbe-Schönberg, D.; Koepke, J.; Hoernle, K.

    2017-12-01

    The accretion mechanisms forming oceanic crust at fast spreading ridges are still under controversial discussion. Thermal, petrological, and geochemical observations predict different end-member models, i.e., the gabbro glacier and the sheeted sill model. They all bear implications for heat transport, temperature distribution, mode of crystallization and hydrothermal heat removal over crustal depth. In a typical MOR setting, temperature is the key factor driving partitioning of incompatible elements during crystallization. LA-ICP-MS data for co-genetic plagioclase and clinopyroxene in gabbros along a transect through the plutonic section of paleo-oceanic crust (Wadi Gideah Transect, Oman ophiolite) reveal that REE partitioning coefficients are relatively constant in the layered gabbro section but increase for the overlying foliated gabbros, with an enhanced offset towards HREEs. Along with a systematic enrichment of REE's with crustal height, these trends are consistent with a system dominated by in-situ crystallization for the lower gabbros and a change in crystallization mode for the upper gabbros. Sun and Liang (2017) used experimental REE partitioning data for calibrating a new REE-in-plagioclase-clinopyroxene thermometer that we used here for establishing the first crystallization-temperature depth profile through oceanic crust that facilitates a direct comparison with thermal models of crustal accretion. Our results indicate crystallization temperatures of about 1220±8°C for the layered gabbros and lower temperatures of 1175±8°C for the foliated gabbros and a thermal minimum above the layered-to-foliated gabbro transition. Our findings are consistent with a hybrid accretion model for the oceanic crust. The thermal minimum is assumed to represent a zone where the descending crystal mushes originating from the axial melt lens meet with mushes that have crystallized in situ. These results can be used to verify and test thermal models (e.g., Maclennan et al

  13. Rifting-to-drifting transition of the South China Sea: Moho reflection characteristics in continental-ocean transition zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wen, Y.; Li, C.

    2017-12-01

    Dispute remains on the process of continental rifting to subsequent seafloor spreading in the South China Sea (SCS). Several crust-scale multi-channel seismic reflection profiles acquired in the continent-ocean transition zone (COT) of the SCS provide a detailed overview of Moho and deep crustal reflectors and give key information on rifting-to-drifting transition of the area. Moho has strong but discontinuous seismic reflection in COT. These discontinuities are mainly located in the landward side of continent-ocean boundary (COB), and may own to upwelling of lower crustal materials during initial continental extension, leading to numerous volcanic edifices and volcanic ridges. The continental crust in COT shows discontinuous Moho reflections at 11-8.5 s in two-way travel time (twtt), and thins from 18-20.5 km under the uppermost slope to 6-7 km under the lower slope, assuming an average crustal velocity of 6.0 km/s. The oceanic crust has Moho reflections of moderate to high continuity mostly at 1.8-2.2 s twtt below the top of the igneous basement, which means that the crustal thickness excluding sediment layer in COT is 5.4-6.6 km. Subhorizontal Moho reflections are often abruptly interrupted by large seaward dipping normal faults in southern COT but are more continuous compared with the fluctuant and very discontinuous Moho reflections in northern COT. The thickness of thinned continental crust (4.2-4.8 km) is smaller than that of oceanic crust (5.4-6.0 km) near southern COB, indicating that the continental crust has experienced a long period of rifting before seafloor spreading started. The smaller width of northern COT (0-40 km) than in southern COT (0-60 km), and thinner continental crust in southern COT, all indicate that the continental margin rifting and extension was asymmetric. The COT width in the SCS is narrower than that found in other magma-poor continental margins, indicating a swift transition from the final stage of rifting to the inception of

  14. Ocean acidification and temperature increase impact mussel shell shape and thickness: problematic for protection?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fitzer, Susan C; Vittert, Liberty; Bowman, Adrian; Kamenos, Nicholas A; Phoenix, Vernon R; Cusack, Maggie

    2015-11-01

    Ocean acidification threatens organisms that produce calcium carbonate shells by potentially generating an under-saturated carbonate environment. Resultant reduced calcification and growth, and subsequent dissolution of exoskeletons, would raise concerns over the ability of the shell to provide protection for the marine organism under ocean acidification and increased temperatures. We examined the impact of combined ocean acidification and temperature increase on shell formation of the economically important edible mussel Mytilus edulis. Shell growth and thickness along with a shell thickness index and shape analysis were determined. The ability of M. edulis to produce a functional protective shell after 9 months of experimental culture under ocean acidification and increasing temperatures (380, 550, 750, 1000 μatm pCO 2, and 750, 1000 μatm pCO 2 + 2°C) was assessed. Mussel shells grown under ocean acidification conditions displayed significant reductions in shell aragonite thickness, shell thickness index, and changes to shell shape (750, 1000 μatm pCO 2) compared to those shells grown under ambient conditions (380 μatm pCO 2). Ocean acidification resulted in rounder, flatter mussel shells with thinner aragonite layers likely to be more vulnerable to fracture under changing environments and predation. The changes in shape presented here could present a compensatory mechanism to enhance protection against predators and changing environments under ocean acidification when mussels are unable to grow thicker shells. Here, we present the first assessment of mussel shell shape to determine implications for functional protection under ocean acidification.

  15. 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.

  16. Determination of a Critical Sea Ice Thickness Threshold for the Central Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ford, V.; Frauenfeld, O. W.; Nowotarski, C. J.

    2017-12-01

    While sea ice extent is readily measurable from satellite observations and can be used to assess the overall survivability of the Arctic sea ice pack, determining the spatial variability of sea ice thickness remains a challenge. Turbulent and conductive heat fluxes are extremely sensitive to ice thickness but are dominated by the sensible heat flux, with energy exchange expected to increase with thinner ice cover. Fluxes over open water are strongest and have the greatest influence on the atmosphere, while fluxes over thick sea ice are minimal as heat conduction from the ocean through thick ice cannot reach the atmosphere. We know that turbulent energy fluxes are strongest over open ocean, but is there a "critical thickness of ice" where fluxes are considered non-negligible? Through polar-optimized Weather Research and Forecasting model simulations, this study assesses how the wintertime Arctic surface boundary layer, via sensible heat flux exchange and surface air temperature, responds to sea ice thinning. The region immediately north of Franz Josef Land is characterized by a thickness gradient where sea ice transitions from the thickest multi-year ice to the very thin marginal ice seas. This provides an ideal location to simulate how the diminishing Arctic sea ice interacts with a warming atmosphere. Scenarios include both fixed sea surface temperature domains for idealized thickness variability, and fixed ice fields to detect changes in the ocean-ice-atmosphere energy exchange. Results indicate that a critical thickness threshold exists below 1 meter. The threshold is between 0.4-1 meters thinner than the critical thickness for melt season survival - the difference between first year and multi-year ice. Turbulent heat fluxes and surface air temperature increase as sea ice thickness transitions from perennial ice to seasonal ice. While models predict a sea ice free Arctic at the end of the warm season in future decades, sea ice will continue to transform

  17. Effect of surface wave propagation in a four-layered oceanic crust model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paul, Pasupati; Kundu, Santimoy; Mandal, Dinbandhu

    2017-12-01

    Dispersion of Rayleigh type surface wave propagation has been discussed in four-layered oceanic crust. It includes a sandy layer over a crystalline elastic half-space and over it there are two more layers—on the top inhomogeneous liquid layer and under it a liquid-saturated porous layer. Frequency equation is obtained in the form of determinant. The effects of the width of different layers as well as the inhomogeneity of liquid layer, sandiness of sandy layer on surface waves are depicted and shown graphically by considering all possible case of the particular model. Some special cases have been deduced, few special cases give the dispersion equation of Scholte wave and Stoneley wave, some of which have already been discussed elsewhere.

  18. Characteristics and management options of crusting soils in a ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... to control the crusting. The relationship between crust thickness and soil physical and chemical properties and management practices were assessed using stepwise regression analysis. Soil crusting was largely related to soil aggregation, infiltration, fine sand fraction, cotton monocropping and crop residue incorporation.

  19. Formation of fast-spreading lower oceanic crust as revealed by a new Mg-REE coupled geospeedometer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Chenguang; Lissenberg, C. Johan

    2018-04-01

    A new geospeedometer is developed based on the differential closures of Mg and rare earth element (REE) bulk-diffusion between coexisting plagioclase and clinopyroxene. By coupling the two elements with distinct bulk closure temperatures, this speedometer can numerically solve the initial temperatures and cooling rates for individual rock samples. As the existing Mg-exchange thermometer was calibrated for a narrow temperature range and strongly relies on model-dependent silica activities, a new thermometer is developed using literature experimental data. When the bulk closure temperatures of Mg and REE are determined, respectively, using this new Mg-exchange thermometer and the existing REE-exchange thermometer, this speedometer can be implemented for a wide range of compositions, mineral modes, and grain sizes. Applications of this new geospeedometer to oceanic gabbros from the fast-spreading East Pacific Rise at Hess Deep reveal that the lower oceanic crust crystallized at temperatures of 998-1353 °C with cooling rates of 0.003-10.2 °C/yr. Stratigraphic variations of the cooling rates and crystallization temperatures support deep hydrothermal circulations and in situ solidification of various replenished magma bodies. Together with existing petrological, geochemical and geophysical evidence, results from this new speedometry suggest that the lower crust formation at fast-spreading mid-ocean ridges involves emplacement of primary mantle melts in the deep section of the crystal mush zone coupled with efficient heat removal by crustal-scale hydrothermal circulations. The replenished melts become chemically and thermally evolved, accumulate as small magma bodies at various depths, feed the shallow axial magma chamber, and may also escape from the mush zone to generate off-axial magma lenses.

  20. On the Arctic Ocean ice thickness response to changes in the external forcing

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stranne, Christian; Bjoerk, Goeran [University of Gothenburg, Department of Earth Sciences, Box 460, Goeteborg (Sweden)

    2012-12-15

    Submarine and satellite observations show that the Arctic Ocean ice cover has undergone a large thickness reduction and a decrease in the areal extent during the last decades. Here the response of the Arctic Ocean ice cover to changes in the poleward atmospheric energy transport, F{sub wall}, is investigated using coupled atmosphere-ice-ocean column models. Two models with highly different complexity are used in order to illustrate the importance of different internal processes and the results highlight the dramatic effects of the negative ice thickness - ice volume export feedback and the positive surface albedo feedback. The steady state ice thickness as a function of F{sub wall} is determined for various model setups and defines what we call ice thickness response curves. When a variable surface albedo and snow precipitation is included, a complex response curve appears with two distinct regimes: a perennial ice cover regime with a fairly linear response and a less responsive seasonal ice cover regime. The two regimes are separated by a steep transition associated with surface albedo feedback. The associated hysteresis is however small, indicating that the Arctic climate system does not have an irreversible tipping point behaviour related to the surface albedo feedback. The results are discussed in the context of the recent reduction of the Arctic sea ice cover. A new mechanism related to regional and temporal variations of the ice divergence within the Arctic Ocean is presented as an explanation for the observed regional variation of the ice thickness reduction. Our results further suggest that the recent reduction in areal ice extent and loss of multiyear ice is related to the albedo dependent transition between seasonal and perennial ice i.e. large areas of the Arctic Ocean that has previously been dominated by multiyear ice might have been pushed below a critical mean ice thickness, corresponding to the above mentioned transition, and into a state dominated

  1. Magmatic intrusions in the lunar crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michaut, C.; Thorey, C.

    2015-10-01

    The lunar highlands are very old, with ages covering a timespan between 4.5 to 4.2 Gyr, and probably formed by flotation of light plagioclase minerals on top of the lunar magma ocean. The lunar crust provides thus an invaluable evidence of the geological and magmatic processes occurring in the first times of the terrestrial planets history. According to the last estimates from the GRAIL mission, the lunar primary crust is particularly light and relatively thick [1] This low-density crust acted as a barrier for the dense primary mantle melts. This is particularly evident in the fact that subsequent mare basalts erupted primarily within large impact basin: at least part of the crust must have been removed for the magma to reach the surface. However, the trajectory of the magma from the mantle to the surface is unknown. Using a model of magma emplacement below an elastic overlying layer with a flexural wavelength Λ, we characterize the surface deformations induced by the presence of shallow magmatic intrusions. We demonstrate that, depending on its size, the intrusion can show two different shapes: a bell shape when its radius is smaller than 4 times Λ or a flat top with small bended edges if its radius is larger than 4 times Λ[2]. These characteristic shapes for the intrusion result in characteristic deformations at the surface that also depend on the topography of the layer overlying the intrusion [3].Using this model we provide evidence of the presence of intrusions within the crust of the Moon as surface deformations in the form of low-slope lunar domes and floor-fractured craters. All these geological features have morphologies consistent with models of magma spreading at depth and deforming an overlying elastic layer. Further more,at floor-fractured craters, the deformation is contained within the crater interior, suggesting that the overpressure at the origin of magma ascent and intrusion was less than the pressure due to the weight of the crust removed by

  2. What governs the enrichment of Pb in the continental crust? An answer from the Mexican Volcanic Belt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldstein, S. L.; Lagatta, A.; Langmuir, C. H.; Straub, S. M.; Martin-Del-Pozzo, A.

    2009-12-01

    hydrothermal sediments. The Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt data confirm the two-step process of Pb enrichment in the arc lavas (and more generally in the continental crust). In the first step, hydrothermal processes at the East Pacific Rise preferentially transport Pb from the basaltic oceanic crust to surface sediments. In the second step, during subduction, these sediments are the main source of asthenospheric mantle-derived Pb to the lavas. Our data also confirm the importance of subduction contributions to the Quaternary Mexican arc, despite the >40 km thick continental crust. Ref: Hofmann et al. (1986) EPSL 79 p. 33-45.

  3. Effect of bend faulting on the hydration state of oceanic crust: Electromagnetic constraints from the Middle America Trench

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-12-01

    In Northern Central America, the portion of the incoming Cocos oceanic plate formed at the East Pacific Rise has a seafloor spreading fabric that is oriented nearly parallel to the trench axis, whereby flexural bending at the outer rise reactivates a dense network of dormant abyssal hill faults. If bending-induced normal faults behave as fluid pathways they may promote extensive mantle hydration and significantly raise the flux of fluids into the subduction system. Multi-channel seismic reflection data imaged bend faults that extend several kilometers beneath the Moho offshore Nicaragua, coincident with seismic refraction data showing significant P-wave velocity reductions in both the crust and uppermost mantle. Ignoring the effect of fracture porosity, the observed mantle velocity reduction is equivalent to an upper bound of 15-20% serpentinization (or 2.0-2.5 wt% H2O). Yet the impact of bend faulting on porosity structure and crustal hydration are not well known. Here, we present results on the electrical resistivity structure of the incoming Cocos plate offshore Nicaragua, the first controlled-source electromagnetic (CSEM) experiment at a subduction zone. The CSEM data imaged several sub-vertical conductive channels extending beneath fault scarps to 5.5 km below seafloor, providing independent evidence for fluid infiltration into the oceanic crust via bending faults. We applied Archie's Law to estimate porosity from the resistivity observations: the dike and gabbro layers increase from 2.7% and 0.7% porosity at 100 km to 4.8% and 1.7% within 20 km of the trench, respectively. In contrast the resistivity, and hence porosity, remain relatively unchanged at sub-Moho depths. Therefore, either the faults do not provide an additional flux of free water to the mantle or, in light of the reduced seismic velocities, the volumetric expansion resulting from mantle serpentinization rapidly consumes any fault-generated porosity. Since our crustal porosity estimates seaward

  4. Petrologic Constraints on Iceland's Lower Crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelley, D. F.; Leftwich, T. E.; Barton, M.

    2005-05-01

    Iceland is an area of relatively thick ocean crust that straddles the spreading MAR. Iceland was created by seafloor spreading originating about 55 Ma above abnormally hot mantle. The high temperatures resulted in greater melt volumes that enhanced crustal thickening. Geophysical investigations provide fundamental insight on crustal features, but results are contradictory. Early seismic, magneto-telluric, and resistivity studies predicted thin crust with partial melt regions at depths of 10-15 km beneath the neovolcanic zones. Reinterpretations based on recent seismic studies suggest thicker and cooler crust. These studies have shown magma lenses at shallow depths beneath volcanic centers, but cannot confirm their presence in the lower crust. Knowledge of the depth of magma chambers is critical to constrain the geothermal gradients in Icelandic crust and to resolve discrepancies in interpretation of geophysical data. Analyses of glasses in Icelandic lavas erupted from 11 volcanic centers throughout the rift zones have been compiled. The pressures of equilibration of these liquids with ol, high-Ca pyx, and plag were estimated qualitatively from projections into the pseudoternary system Ol-Di-Qtz. The results (ca. 0.6 GPa) indicate crystallization in magma chambers located at about 20 km depth. Equilibrium pressures also have been calculated quantitatively. These results (0.6±0.2 GPa) indicate magma chambers at 19.8±6.5 km depth beneath the volcanic centers. Magma chamber at these depths are located in the lower crust inferring that it must be relatively warm. Geothermal gradients have been calculated using the depths of the sourcing magma chambers and any shallow seismically detected magma chambers at each location. An average crustal composition has been calculated from the compiled geochemical data and was used to calculate density variations and seismic velocities along the geotherms. The distribution of sample locations in this study provides sufficient data

  5. USArray Imaging of Continental Crust in the Conterminous United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Xiaofei; Lowry, Anthony R.

    2017-12-01

    The thickness and bulk composition of continental crust provide important constraints on the evolution and dynamics of continents. Crustal mineralogy and thickness both may influence gravity anomalies, topographic elevation, and lithospheric strength, but prior to the inception of EarthScope's USArray, seismic measurements of crustal thickness and properties useful for inferring lithology are sparse. Here we improve upon a previously published methodology for joint inversion of Bouguer gravity anomalies and seismic receiver functions by using parameter space stacking of cross correlations of modeled synthetic and observed receiver functions instead of standard H-κ amplitude stacking. The new method is applied to estimation of thickness and bulk seismic velocity ratio, vP/vS, of continental crust in the conterminous United States using USArray and other broadband network data. Crustal thickness variations are reasonably consistent with those found in other studies and show interesting relationships to the history of North American continental formation. Seismic velocity ratios derived in this study are more robust than in other analyses and hint at large-scale variations in composition of continental crust. To interpret the results, we model the pressure-/temperature-dependent thermodynamics of mineral formation for various crustal chemistries, with and without volatile constituents. Our results suggest that hydration lowers bulk crustal vP/vS and density and releases heat in the shallow crust but absorbs heat in the lowermost crust (where plagioclase breaks down to pyroxene and garnet resulting in higher seismic velocity). Hence, vP/vS variations may provide a useful proxy for hydration state in the crust.

  6. Role of hydrology in the formation of Co-rich Mn crusts from the equatorial N Pacific, equatorial S Indian Ocean and the NE Atlantic Ocean

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Glasby, G.P.; Mountain, B.; Vineesh, T.C.; Banakar, V.K.; Rajani, R.; Ren, X.

    , the distribution of oxygen in seawater is taken from Profile PO3 which is an E-W Profile in the Equa- torial Pacific Ocean at 25°N (http://www.ewoce.org/ gallery/P3_OXYGEN.gif; Fig. 4). This profile is 4–6 degrees of latitude north of the transect from Horizon... in the Indian Ocean at 80°E (http://www. ewoce.org/gallery/18_OXYGEN.gif; Fig. 5). From this profile, it can be seen that the OMZ at ANS occurs at a water depth of ~900 m and has an oxygen content of ~45 mmol kg -1 . The Co-rich Mn crust was taken at water depth...

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. Global Ocean Sedimentation Patterns: Plate Tectonic History Versus Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goswami, A.; Reynolds, E.; Olson, P.; Hinnov, L. A.; Gnanadesikan, A.

    2014-12-01

    Global sediment data (Whittaker et al., 2013) and carbonate content data (Archer, 1996) allows examination of ocean sedimentation evolution with respect to age of the underlying ocean crust (Müller et al., 2008). From these data, we construct time series of ocean sediment thickness and carbonate deposition rate for the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian ocean basins for the past 120 Ma. These time series are unique to each basin and reflect an integrated response to plate tectonics and climate change. The goal is to parameterize ocean sedimentation tied to crustal age for paleoclimate studies. For each basin, total sediment thickness and carbonate deposition rate from 0.1 x 0.1 degree cells are binned according to basement crustal age; area-corrected moments (mean, variance, etc.) are calculated for each bin. Segmented linear fits identify trends in present-day carbonate deposition rates and changes in ocean sedimentation from 0 to 120 Ma. In the North and South Atlantic and Indian oceans, mean sediment thickness versus crustal age is well represented by three linear segments, with the slope of each segment increasing with increasing crustal age. However, the transition age between linear segments varies among the three basins. In contrast, mean sediment thickness in the North and South Pacific oceans are numerically smaller and well represented by two linear segments with slopes that decrease with increasing crustal age. These opposing trends are more consistent with the plate tectonic history of each basin being the controlling factor in sedimentation rates, rather than climate change. Unlike total sediment thickness, carbonate deposition rates decrease smoothly with crustal age in all basins, with the primary controls being ocean chemistry and water column depth.References: Archer, D., 1996, Global Biogeochem. Cycles 10, 159-174.Müller, R.D., et al., 2008, Science, 319, 1357-1362.Whittaker, J., et al., 2013, Geochem., Geophys., Geosyst. DOI: 10.1002/ggge.20181

  10. Oceanic-type accretion may begin before complete continental break-up

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geoffroy, L.; Zalan, P. V.; Viana, A. R.

    2011-12-01

    Oceanic accretion is thought to be the process of oceanic crust (and lithosphere) edification through adiabatic melting of shallow convecting mantle at oceanic spreading ridges. It is usually considered as a post-breakup diagnostic process following continents rupturing. However, this is not always correct. The structure of volcanic passive margins (representing more than 50% of passive continental margins) outlines that the continental lithosphere is progressively changed into oceanic-type lithosphere during the stage of continental extension. This is clear at least, at crustal level. The continental crust is 'changed' from the earliest stages of extension into a typical -however thicker- oceanic crust with the typical oceanic magmatic layers (from top to bottom: lava flows/tuffs, sheeted dyke complexes, dominantly (sill-like) mafic intrusions in the lower crust). The Q-rich continental crust is highly extended and increases in volume (due to the magma) during the extensional process. At the continent-ocean transition there is, finally, no seismic difference between this highly transformed continental crust and the oceanic crust. Using a large range of data (including deep seismic reflection profiles), we discuss the mantle mechanisms that governs the process of mantle-assisted continental extension. We outline the large similarity between those mantle processes and those acting at purely-oceanic spreading axis and discuss the effects of the inherited continental lithosphere in the pattern of new mafic crust edification.

  11. Temperature of the Icelandic crust: Inferred from electrical conductivity, temperature surface gradient, and maximum depth of earthquakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Björnsson, Axel

    2008-02-01

    Two different models of the structure of the Icelandic crust have been presented. One is the thin-crust model with a 10-15 km thick crust beneath the axial rift zones, with an intermediate layer of partially molten basalt at the base of the crust and on the top of an up-domed asthenosphere. The thick-crust model assumes a 40 km thick and relatively cold crust beneath central Iceland. The most important and crucial parameter to distinguish between these different models is the temperature distribution with depth. Three methods are used to estimate the temperature distribution with depth. First, the surface temperature gradient measured in shallow wells drilled outside geothermal areas. Second, the thickness of the seismogenic zone which is associated with a 750 °C isothermal surface. Third, the depth to a layer with high electrical conductivity which is associated with partially molten basalt with temperature around 1100 °C at the base of the crust. Combination of these data shows that the temperature gradient can be assumed to be nearly linear from the surface down to the base of the crust. These results are strongly in favour of the thin-crust model. The scattered deep seismic reflectors interpreted as Moho in the thick-crust model could be caused by phase transitions or reflections from melt pockets in the mantle.

  12. Crust-mantle contribution to Andean magmatism

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ruiz, J; Hildreth, W; Chesley, J

    2001-01-01

    There has long been great interest in quantifying the contributions of the continental crust to continental arc magmas, such as those of the Andes using osmium isotopes (Alves et al., 1999; Borg et al., 2000; Brandon et al., 1996; McInnes et al., 1999). In general, Andean volcanic rocks of all compositions show relatively low Sr-isotope ratios and positive to mildly negative epsilon Nd values. Nonetheless, in the Southern Volcanic Zone of central Chile, basalt-andesite-dacite volcanoes along the Quaternary volcanic front were shown (by Hildreth and Moorbath, 1988) to have latitudinally systematic chemical variations, as well as a monotonic increase in 87Sr/Sr86 from ca. 0.7035 to 0.7055 and a decrease in epsilon Nd values from ca. +3 to -1. The isotopic variations correlate with basement elevation of the volcanic edifices and with Bouguer gravity anomalies, both of which are thought to reflect along-arc variations in thickness and average age of the underlying crust. Volcanoes with the most evolved isotopic signatures were fed through the thickest crust. Correlation of chemical and isotopic variations with crustal thickness was interpreted to be caused by Melting (of deep-crustal host rocks), Assimilation, Storage, and Homogenization (MASH) of mantle-derived magmas in long-lived lower-crustal reservoirs beneath each center prior to eruption. We have now determined Os-isotope ratios for a sample suite from these volcanoes (33-36 S lat.), representing a range of crustal thickness from ca. 60-35 km. The samples range in MgO from ca. 8-4% and in SiO2 from 51-57%. The most evolved eruptive products occur above the thickest crust and have 87Sr/86Sr ratios of 0.7054 and epsilon Nd values of -1.5. The 187Os/188Os ratios correlate with the other isotopic systems and with crustal thickness. Volcanoes on the thinnest crust have 187Os/188Os ratios of 0.18-0.21. Those on the thickest crust have 187Os/188Os ratios as high as 0.64. All the Os values are much too radiogenic to

  13. OESbathy version 1.0: a method for reconstructing ocean bathymetry with realistic continental shelf-slope-rise structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goswami, A.; Olson, P. L.; Hinnov, L. A.; Gnanadesikan, A.

    2015-04-01

    We present a method for reconstructing global ocean bathymetry that uses a plate cooling model for the oceanic lithosphere, the age distribution of the oceanic crust, global oceanic sediment thicknesses, plus shelf-slope-rise structures calibrated at modern active and passive continental margins. Our motivation is to reconstruct realistic ocean bathymetry based on parameterized relationships of present-day variables that can be applied to global oceans in the geologic past, and to isolate locations where anomalous processes such as mantle convection may affect bathymetry. Parameters of the plate cooling model are combined with ocean crustal age to calculate depth-to-basement. To the depth-to-basement we add an isostatically adjusted, multicomponent sediment layer, constrained by sediment thickness in the modern oceans and marginal seas. A continental shelf-slope-rise structure completes the bathymetry reconstruction, extending from the ocean crust to the coastlines. Shelf-slope-rise structures at active and passive margins are parameterized using modern ocean bathymetry at locations where a complete history of seafloor spreading is preserved. This includes the coastal regions of the North, South, and Central Atlantic Ocean, the Southern Ocean between Australia and Antarctica, and the Pacific Ocean off the west coast of South America. The final products are global maps at 0.1° × 0.1° resolution of depth-to-basement, ocean bathymetry with an isostatically adjusted, multicomponent sediment layer, and ocean bathymetry with reconstructed continental shelf-slope-rise structures. Our reconstructed bathymetry agrees with the measured ETOPO1 bathymetry at most passive margins, including the east coast of North America, north coast of the Arabian Sea, and northeast and southeast coasts of South America. There is disagreement at margins with anomalous continental shelf-slope-rise structures, such as around the Arctic Ocean, the Falkland Islands, and Indonesia.

  14. The age and emplacement of obducted oceanic crust in the Urals from Sm-Nd and Rb-Sr systematics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Edwards, R.L.; Wasserburg, G.J.

    1985-01-01

    The Urals contain a 2000 km belt of mafic-ultramafic bodies. The Sm-Nd and Rb-Sr systematics of two of these bodies, the Kempersai Massif in the South Ural Mountains and the Voykar-Syninsky Ophiolite Complex in the Polar Ural Mountains have been examined. These data confirm the hypothesis that these bodies represent fragments of pre-collision oceanic crust and establish constraints on the nature and timing of events in the Uralian Orogeny. Two Kempersai gabbros define Sm-Nd internal isochrons of 397 +- 20 My and 396 +- 33 My with epsilonsub(Nd)(T) = +8.7 -+ 0.6 and +8.4 -+ 1.3, respectively. Whole rock samples of pillow basalt, diabase, gabbros, troctolite, and a metasediment give Sm-Nd values which lie on this isochron indicating that these rocks are genetically related and have an igneous crystallization age of 397 My. Whole rock samples of Voykar-Syninsky diabase, gabbros, and clinopyroxenite give Sm-Nd values which lie on or within proportional 1 epsilon-unit of this isochron indicating an age and epsilonsub(Nd)(T) virtually identical to those of Kempersai. epsilonsub(Nd)(T) for the Kempersai and Voykar-Syninsky mafic samples range from +7.3 to +9.0 with an average value of +8.4. This indicates that the Urals ophiolites are derived from an ancient depleted mantle source and are most plausibly pieces of the oceanic crust and lithosphere. The fact that a metasediment has the same epsilonsub(Nd)(397 My) as the other samples indicates derivation from an oceanic source with negligible continental input. epsilonsub(Nd)(T) for the massifs is proportional 1.5 epsilon-units lower than the average for modern MORBs. (orig./HSI)

  15. OESbathy version 1.0: a method for reconstructing ocean bathymetry with generalized continental shelf-slope-rise structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goswami, A.; Olson, P. L.; Hinnov, L. A.; Gnanadesikan, A.

    2015-09-01

    We present a method for reconstructing global ocean bathymetry that combines a standard plate cooling model for the oceanic lithosphere based on the age of the oceanic crust, global oceanic sediment thicknesses, plus generalized shelf-slope-rise structures calibrated at modern active and passive continental margins. Our motivation is to develop a methodology for reconstructing ocean bathymetry in the geologic past that includes heterogeneous continental margins in addition to abyssal ocean floor. First, the plate cooling model is applied to maps of ocean crustal age to calculate depth to basement. To the depth to basement we add an isostatically adjusted, multicomponent sediment layer constrained by sediment thickness in the modern oceans and marginal seas. A three-parameter continental shelf-slope-rise structure completes the bathymetry reconstruction, extending from the ocean crust to the coastlines. Parameters of the shelf-slope-rise structures at active and passive margins are determined from modern ocean bathymetry at locations where a complete history of seafloor spreading is preserved. This includes the coastal regions of the North, South, and central Atlantic, the Southern Ocean between Australia and Antarctica, and the Pacific Ocean off the west coast of South America. The final products are global maps at 0.1° × 0.1° resolution of depth to basement, ocean bathymetry with an isostatically adjusted multicomponent sediment layer, and ocean bathymetry with reconstructed continental shelf-slope-rise structures. Our reconstructed bathymetry agrees with the measured ETOPO1 bathymetry at most passive margins, including the east coast of North America, north coast of the Arabian Sea, and northeast and southeast coasts of South America. There is disagreement at margins with anomalous continental shelf-slope-rise structures, such as around the Arctic Ocean, the Falkland Islands, and Indonesia.

  16. Central Atlantic Break-up: A competition between CAMP Hotspot and thinning rate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sapin, F.; Maurin, T.

    2017-12-01

    The break-up of the Central Atlantic is known to have ended at about 190Myrs while the CAMP (Central Atlantic Magmatic Province) was still active. Several seismic lines, acquired recently in the deep offshore Senegal and Mauritanian domain, provide detailed images of continent-ocean transition and the oceanic crust architecture. Their interpretation is the opportunity to describe the progressive interaction between the hot spot activity, the architecture and timing of break up and the oceanic crust production. In the North, seismic data and gravity/magnetic inversions suggest an extremely thinned continental crust with possible mantle exhumation. In the South, the continental crust is thick and the transition to oceanic crust is sharp. In addition, three oceanic crust facies were described along the margin in an extremely slow spreading ridge setting ( 0.8cm/yr during the first 20Myrs): facies (1) with a poorly imaged Moho and a strongly faulted thin oceanic crust or exhumed mantle; facies (2) with an extensively faulted 6km thick oceanic crust; facies (3) with abnormally thick (9km) oceanic crust marked by SDR-type reflections. They are diachronous from North to South and the two first one disappear southwards and (facies 3) being younger toward the North. Only a single very thick oceanic crust (12-14km) remains in front of the Guinea Plateau. We concluded that, in the South, the break-up had been forced through a thick or thickened continental crust due to the remnant activity of the CAMP Hotspot. In the North, the magmatic pulse arrived far after the break-up during the spreading and the thinning of the continental crust could lead to hyper extension. This evolution emphasizes that the architecture, and thus processes leading to the break-up can vary a lot considering the influence of thermal vertical forces (mantle dynamics/hotspot/magmatism) and mechanical horizontal forces (plate movement/faulting/spreading), both of them being necessary for a rift to succeed.

  17. A Reference Section through the Lower Fast-spreading Oceanic Crust in the Wadi Gideah (Sumail ophiolite, Sultanate Oman): Drill Sites GT1A and GT2A within the ICDP Oman Drilling Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, S.; Koepke, J.; Garbe-Schoenberg, C. D.; Müller, T.; Mock, D.; Strauss, H.; Schuth, S.; Ildefonse, B.

    2017-12-01

    In the absence of a complete profile through fast-spreading oceanic crust in modern oceans, we established a reference profile through the whole paleocrust of the Sumail Ophiolite (Oman), which is regarded as the best analogue for fast-spreading oceanic crust on land. For establishing a coherent data set, we sampled the Wadi Gideah in the Wadi-Tayin massif from the mantle section up to the pillow basalts and performed different analytical and structural investigations on the same suite of samples (pool sample concept). The whole sample set contains about 400 samples focusing on both primary magmatic rocks and hydrothermal fault zones to characterize initial formation processes and cooling of the crust. The Wadi Gideah hosts the sites GT1A (lower crust) and GT2A (foliated / layered gabbro transition) where 400 m long cores have been drilled in the frame of the ICDP Oman Drilling Project (OmanDP). Thus, the Wadi Gideah crustal transect is well-suited for providing a reference frame for these two drill cores. Major and trace element data on minerals and rocks reveal in-situ crystallization in the deep crust, thus strongly supporting a hybrid accretion model that is characterized by sheeted sill intrusion in the lower part of the plutonic crust and gabbro glacier features in the upper section. This hybrid model is also supported by results on crystallographic preferred orientations (CPO) of the minerals within the gabbros, which call for distinct formation mechanisms in the upper and lower gabbro sections. A requirement for our hybrid model is significant hydrothermal cooling in the lower crust for the consumption of the latent heat of crystallization. This was facilitated by channelled hydrothermal flow zones, preserved today in faulted zones of extensively altered gabbro cutting both layered and foliated gabbros. These gabbros show higher Sr87/Sr86 ratios if compared to the background gabbro, the presence of late stage minerals (amphibole, oxides, orthopyroxene

  18. 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

  19. Incipient boninitic arc crust built on denudated mantle: the Khantaishir ophiolite (western Mongolia)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gianola, Omar; Schmidt, Max W.; Jagoutz, Oliver; Sambuu, Oyungerel

    2017-12-01

    The 570 Ma old Khantaishir ophiolite is built by up to 4 km harzburgitic mantle with abundant pyroxenites and dunites followed by 2 km of hornblende-gabbros and gabbronorites and by a 2.5 km thick volcanic unit composed of a dyke + sill complex capped by pillow lavas and some volcanoclastics. The volcanics are mainly basaltic andesites and andesites (or boninites) with an average of 58.2 ± 1.0 wt% SiO2, X Mg = 0.61 ± 0.03 ( X Mg = molar MgO/(MgO + FeOtot), TiO2 = 0.4 ± 0.1 wt% and CaO = 7.5 ± 0.6 wt% (errors as 2 σ). Normalized trace element patterns show positive anomalies for Pb and Sr, a negative Nb-anomaly, large ion lithophile elements (LILE) concentrations between N- and E-MORB and distinctly depleted HREE. These characteristics indicate that the Khantaishir volcanics were derived from a refractory mantle source modified by a moderate slab-component, similar to boninites erupted along the Izu-Bonin-Mariana subduction system and to the Troodos and Betts Cove ophiolites. Most strikingly and despite almost complete outcrops over 260 km2, there is no remnant of any pre-existing MORB crust, suggesting that the magmatic suite of this ophiolite formed on completely denudated mantle, most likely upon subduction initiation. The architecture of this 4-5 km thick early arc crust resembles oceanic crust formed at mid ocean ridges, but lacks a sheeted dyke complex; volcanic edifices are not observed. Nevertheless, low melting pressures combined with moderate H2O-contents resulted in high-Si primitive melts, in abundant hornblende-gabbros and in a fast enrichment in bulk SiO2. Fractional crystallization modeling starting from the observed primitive melts (56.6 wt% SiO2) suggests that 25 wt% pyroxene + plagioclase fractionation is sufficient to form the average Khantaishir volcanic crust. Most of the fractionation happened in the mantle, the observed pyroxenite lenses and layers in and at the top of the harzburgites account for the required cumulate volumes. Finally

  20. The structure of the crust and uppermost mantle beneath Madagascar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andriampenomanana, Fenitra; Nyblade, Andrew A.; Wysession, Michael E.; Durrheim, Raymond J.; Tilmann, Frederik; Julià, Jordi; Pratt, Martin J.; Rambolamanana, Gérard; Aleqabi, Ghassan; Shore, Patrick J.; Rakotondraibe, Tsiriandrimanana

    2017-09-01

    The lithosphere of Madagascar was initially amalgamated during the Pan-African events in the Neoproterozoic. It has subsequently been reshaped by extensional processes associated with the separation from Africa and India in the Jurassic and Cretaceous, respectively, and been subjected to several magmatic events in the late Cretaceous and the Cenozoic. In this study, the crust and uppermost mantle have been investigated to gain insights into the present-day structure and tectonic evolution of Madagascar. We analysed receiver functions, computed from data recorded on 37 broad-band seismic stations, using the H-κ stacking method and a joint inversion with Rayleigh-wave phase-velocity measurements. The thickness of the Malagasy crust ranges between 18 and 46 km. It is generally thick beneath the spine of mountains in the centre part (up to 46 km thick) and decreases in thickness towards the edges of the island. The shallowest Moho is found beneath the western sedimentary basins (18 km thick), which formed during both the Permo-Triassic Karro rifting in Gondwana and the Jurassic rifting of Madagascar from eastern Africa. The crust below the sedimentary basin thickens towards the north and east, reflecting the progressive development of the basins. In contrast, in the east there was no major rifting episode. Instead, the slight thinning of the crust along the east coast (31-36 km thick) may have been caused by crustal uplift and erosion when Madagascar moved over the Marion hotspot and India broke away from it. The parameters describing the crustal structure of Archean and Proterozoic terranes, including average thickness (40 km versus 35 km), Poisson's ratio (0.25 versus 0.26), average shear-wave velocity (both 3.7 km s-1), and thickness of mafic lower crust (7 km versus 4 km), show weak evidence of secular variation. The uppermost mantle beneath Madagascar is generally characterized by shear-wave velocities typical of stable lithosphere (∼4.5 km s-1). However

  1. Does seismic activity control carbon exchanges between transform-faults in old ocean crust and the deep sea? A hypothesis examined by the EU COST network FLOWS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lever, M. A.

    2014-12-01

    The European Cooperation in Science and Technology (COST)-Action FLOWS (http://www.cost.eu/domains_actions/essem/Actions/ES1301) was initiated on the 25th of October 2013. It is a consortium formed by members of currently 14 COST countries and external partners striving to better understand the interplay between earthquakes and fluid flow at transform-faults in old oceanic crust. The recent occurrence of large earthquakes and discovery of deep fluid seepage calls for a revision of the postulated hydrogeological inactivity and low seismic activity of old oceanic transform-type plate boundaries, and indicates that earthquakes and fluid flow are intrinsically associated. This Action merges the expertise of a large number of research groups and supports the development of multidisciplinary knowledge on how seep fluid (bio)chemistry relates to seismicity. It aims to identify (bio)geochemical proxies for the detection of precursory seismic signals and to develop innovative physico-chemical sensors for deep-ocean seismogenic faults. National efforts are coordinated through Working Groups (WGs) focused on 1) geophysical and (bio)geochemical data acquisition; 2) modelling of structure and seismicity of faults; 3) engineering of deep-ocean physico-chemical seismic sensors; and 4) integration and dissemination. This poster will illustrate the overarching goals of the FLOWS Group, with special focus to research goals concerning the role of seismic activity in controlling the release of carbon from the old ocean crust into the deep ocean.

  2. Heat Flow Variation along the Nankai Trough Floor Correlated with the Structure of the Shikoku Basin Oceanic Crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamano, M.; Kawada, Y.; Gao, X.

    2016-12-01

    Surface heat flow observed on the floor of the Nankai Trough, near the trench axis, is highly variable and does not well correspond to the seafloor age of the incoming Philippine Sea plate (Shikoku Basin). Recent detailed measurements between 133.5°E and 137°E revealed that heat flow on the trough floor significantly varies along the trough. The most conspicuous variation is found around 136°E. Heat flow is extremely high and variable between 135°E and 136°E, much higher than the value estimated from the age. On the east of 136°E, heat flow gradually decreases eastward over 50 km to the value nearly consistent with the age with no appreciable scatter. Elevated heat flow on the trough floor can be attributed to vigorous fluid circulation in a permeable layer (aquifer) in the subducted oceanic crust, which efficiently transports heat upward along the plate interface (Spinelli and Wang, 2008). The heat flow variation around 136°E may therefore arise from variation in the permeability structure of the crustal aquifer. A probable cause of the heterogeneity in the aquifer permeability is a structure boundary in the incoming Shikoku Basin, the boundary between the younger part on the west formed by spreading in NE-SW direction and the older part on the east formed by E-W spreading. It is located around 136°E, about the same place as the heat flow distribution boundary. A possible additional source of variation in the permeability structure is the geometry of the subducted Philippine Sea plate. A prominent bend in the subducted plate between 135°E and 136°E, which corresponds to the high heat flow area on the trough floor, may have fractured the oceanic crust and enhanced the aquifer permeability. We evaluated the influence of variations in the aquifer permeability on the thermal structure through 3D numerical modelling using a high thermal-conductivity proxy for heat transport by fluid flow. A sharp along-strike change in the permeability of the subducted

  3. Crust-mantle density distribution in the eastern Qinghai-Tibet Plateau revealed by satellite-derived gravity gradients

    Science.gov (United States)

    LI, Honglei; Fang, Jian; Braitenberg, Carla; Wang, Xinsheng

    2015-04-01

    As the highest, largest and most active plateau on Earth, the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau has a complex crust-mantle structure, especially in its eastern part. In response to the subduction of the lithospheric mantle of the Indian plate, large-scale crustal motion occurs in this area. Despite the many previous studies, geodynamic processes at depth remain unclear. Knowledge of crust and upper mantle density distribution allows a better definition of the deeper geological structure and thus provides critically needed information for understanding of the underlying geodynamic processes. With an unprecedented precision of 1-2 mGal and a spatial resolution better than 100 km, GOCE (Gravity field and steady-state Ocean Circulation Explorer) mission products can be used to constrain the crust-mantle density distribution. Here we used GOCE gravitational gradients at an altitude of 10km after reducing the effects of terrain, sediment thickness variations, and Moho undulations to image the density structures of eastern Tibet up to 200 km depths. We inverted the residual satellite gravitational gradients using a least square approach. The initial density model for the inversion is based on seismic velocities from the tomography. The model is composed of rectangular blocks, having a uniform density, with widths of about 100 km and variable thickness and depths. The thickness of the rectangular cells changes from10 to 60km in accordance with the seismic model. Our results reveal some large-scale, structurally controlled density variations at depths. The lithospheric root defined by higher-density contrast features from southwest to northeast, with shallowing in the central part: base of lithosphere reaches a depth of180 km, less than 100km, and 200 km underneath the Lhasa, Songpan-Ganzi, and Ordos crustal blocks, respectively. However, these depth values only represent a first-order parameterization because they depend on model discretization inherited from the original seismic

  4. 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

  5. On the dynamics and the geochemical mechanism of the evolution of the continental crust. 1

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wetzel, K.

    1983-01-01

    An investigation of the isotopic composition of oxygen in the continental crust, in the oceans, in the oceanic crust and in the upper mantle shows the dynamics of plate tectonics and continental growthto be more or less constant during the last three or four aeons independent on the geochemical mechanism of continental growth. (author)

  6. Barium isotope composition of altered oceanic crust from the IODP Site 1256 at the East Pacific Rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nan, X.; Yu, H.; Gao, Y.

    2017-12-01

    To understand the behavior of Ba isotopes in the oceanic crust during seawater alteration, we analyzed Ba isotopes for altered oceanic crust (AOC) from the IODP Site 1256 at the East Pacific Rise (EPR). The samples include 33 basalts, 5 gabbros, and 1 gabbronorite. This drill profile has four sections from top to bottom, including the volcanic section, transition zone, sheeted dyke complex, and plutonic complex. They display various degrees of alteration with obviously variable temperatures and water/rock ratios (Gao et al., 2012). The volcanic section is slightly to moderately altered by seawater at 100 to 250°; the transition zone is a mixing zone between upwelling hydrothermal fluids and downwelling seawater; and the sheeted dyke complex and plutonic complex are highly altered by hydrothermal fluids (˜250°). Ba isotopes were analyzed on a Neptune Plus MC-ICP-MS at the University of Science and Technology of China. The long-term precision of δ137/134Ba is better than 0.04‰ (2SD). The δ137/134Ba of the volcanic section and the top of the transition zone range between -0.01 and 0.30‰, higher than the δ137/134Ba of fresh MORB and upper mantle (0.020 ± 0.021‰, 2SE, Huang et al., 2015). Similarly, the δ137/134Ba of the sheeted dyke complex ranges from 0.05 to 0.28‰. The plutonic section has δ137/134Ba from -0.17 to -0.05‰, which is lower than the upper mantle, with one exception that has δ137/134Ba of 0.19‰. No correlation exists between Ba contents and δ137/134Ba. The weighted average δ137/134Ba of the AOC samples is 0.13±0.04‰ (2SE), significantly higher than that of the upper mantle. In all, our AOC data reveal obvious Ba isotopic fractionation, reflecting alteration of the AOC by hydrothermal fluids and seawater. The obvious difference of Ba isotope composition between the AOC and the upper mantle further indicates that recycling of the AOC could result in Ba isotope heterogeneity of the mantle. References: Gao Y, Vils F, Cooper K M, et

  7. Structure of the crust beneath Cameroon, West Africa, from the joint inversion of Rayleigh wave group velocities and receiver functions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tokam, Alain-Pierre K.; Tabod, Charles T.; Nyblade, Andrew A.; Julià, Jordi; Wiens, Douglas A.; Pasyanos, Michael E.

    2010-11-01

    The Cameroon Volcanic Line (CVL) consists of a linear chain of Tertiary to Recent, generally alkaline, volcanoes that do not exhibit an age progression. Here we study crustal structure beneath the CVL and adjacent regions in Cameroon using 1-D shear wave velocity models obtained from the joint inversion of Rayleigh wave group velocities and P-receiver functions for 32 broad-band seismic stations deployed between 2005 January and 2007 February. We find that (1) crustal thickness (35-39km) and velocity structure is similar beneath the CVL and the Pan African Oubanguides Belt to the south of the CVL, (2) crust is thicker (43-48km) under the northern margin of the Congo Craton and is characterized by shear wave velocities >=4.0kms-1 in its lower part and (3) crust is thinner (26-31km) under the Garoua rift and the coastal plain. In addition, a fast velocity layer (Vs of 3.6-3.8kms-1) in the upper crust is found beneath many of the seismic stations. Crustal structure beneath the CVL and the Oubanguides Belt is very similar to Pan African crustal structure in the Mozambique Belt, and therefore it appears not to have been modified significantly by the magmatic activity associated with the CVL. The crust beneath the coastal plain was probably thinned during the opening of the southern Atlantic Ocean, while the crust beneath the Garoua rift was likely thinned during the formation of the Benue Trough in the early Cretaceous. We suggest that the thickened crust and the thick mafic lower crustal layer beneath the northern margin of the Congo Craton may be relict features from a continent-continent collision along this margin during the formation of Gondwana.

  8. Revisiting Seafloor-Spreading in the Red Sea: Basement Nature, Transforms and Ocean-Continent Boundary

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tapponnier, P.; Dyment, J.; Zinger, M. A.; Franken, D.; Afifi, A. M.; Wyllie, A.; Ali, H. G.; Hanbal, I.

    2013-12-01

    A new marine geophysical survey on the Saudi Arabian side of the Red Sea confirms early inferences that ~ 2/3 of the eastern Red Sea is floored by oceanic crust. Most seismic profiles south of 24°N show a strongly reflective, landward-deepening volcanic basement up to ~ 100 km east of the axial ridge, beneath thick evaporitic deposits. This position of the Ocean-Continent Boundary (OCB) is consistent with gravity measurements. The low amplitudes and long wavelengths of magnetic anomalies older than Chrons 1-3 can be accounted for by low-pass filtering due to thick sediments. Seafloor-spreading throughout the Red Sea started around 15 Ma, as in the western Gulf of Aden. Its onset was coeval with the activation of the Aqaba/Levant transform and short-cutting of the Gulf of Suez. The main difference between the southern and northern Red Sea lies not in the nature of the crust but in the direction and modulus of the plate motion rate. The ~ 30° counterclockwise strike change and halving of the spreading rate (~ 16 to ~ 8 mm/yr) between the Hermil (17°N) and Suez triple junctions results in a shift from slow (≈ North Atlantic) to highly oblique, ultra-slow (≈ Southwest Indian) ridge type. The obliquity of spreading in the central and northern basins is taken up by transform discontinuities that stop ~ 40 km short of the coastline, at the OCB. Three large transform fault systems (Jeddah, Zabargad, El Akhawein) nucleated as continental transfer faults reactivating NNE-trending Proterozoic shear zones. The former two systems divide the Red Sea into three main basins. Between ~15 and ~5 Ma, for about 10 million years, thick evaporites were deposited directly on top of oceanic crust in deep water, as the depositional environment, modulated by climate, became restricted by the Suez and Afar/Bab-el-Mandeb volcano-tectonic 'flood-gates.' The presence of these thick deposits (up to ~ 8 km) suffices to account for the difference between the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden

  9. Estimating susceptibility and magnetization within the Earth's continental crust: Petrophysical and Satellite approaches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Purucker, M. E.; McEnroe, S. A.

    2014-12-01

    Magnetic models (Xchaos) made from Champ and Orsted data are used to place constraints on the average magnetic susceptibility and its variability in the continental crust. Estimates of magnetic crustal thickness are made in a two-step process. The first step uses a recent seismic model (Crust1.0) to estimate the thickness of crystalline crust above the Moho, modified in the Andes and the Himalayas to account for the non-magnetic lower crust there. The second step calculates the magnetic field expected from such a layer of crystalline rock assuming the magnetization is solely induced in the earth's main field by rock of constant magnetic susceptibility, and modifies the starting crustal thickness to bring it into agreement with the Xchaos model. This global model removes spherical harmonic degrees less than 15 to account for the core field mask. We restrict our attention to the continental crust, in particular to Australia, western North America, and Scandinavia. Petrophysical and petrological data from Scandinavian rocks that have been deep in the crust help place limits on susceptibility values. Our simulations use two susceptibilities, 0.02 and 0.04 SI. The mean crystalline crustal thickness from the seismic model is 42 and 37 km in western North America and Australia, respectively, and the modification with the magnetic data makes little change to the mean crustal thickness, irrespective of whether the susceptibility is 0.02 or 0.04 SI. However, the modification with the magnetic data does make a significant difference to the standard deviation of the crustal thickness, increasing it by a factor of two in the case of a susceptibility of 0.04, and by a factor of four in the case of a susceptibility of 0.02. The changes to the standard deviation of the crustal thickness are also evident in the Scandinavian data, but the mean crystalline crustal thickness of 45 km is significantly larger than that found from either magnetic model (33 and 30 km). The differences

  10. Hafnium isotope stratigraphy of ferromanganese crusts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee; Halliday; Hein; Burton; Christensen; Gunther

    1999-08-13

    A Cenozoic record of hafnium isotopic compositions of central Pacific deep water has been obtained from two ferromanganese crusts. The crusts are separated by more than 3000 kilometers but display similar secular variations. Significant fluctuations in hafnium isotopic composition occurred in the Eocene and Oligocene, possibly related to direct advection from the Indian and Atlantic oceans. Hafnium isotopic compositions have remained approximately uniform for the past 20 million years, probably reflecting increased isolation of the central Pacific. The mechanisms responsible for the increase in (87)Sr/(86)Sr in seawater through the Cenozoic apparently had no effect on central Pacific deep-water hafnium.

  11. Subsurface Ocean Tides in Enceladus and Other Icy Moons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beuthe, M.

    2016-12-01

    Could tidal dissipation within Enceladus' subsurface ocean account for the observed heat flow? Earthlike models of dynamical tides give no definitive answer because they neglect the influence of the crust. I propose here the first model of dissipative tides in a subsurface ocean, by combining the Laplace Tidal Equations with the membrane approach. For the first time, it is possible to compute tidal dissipation rates within the crust, ocean, and mantle in one go. I show that oceanic dissipation is strongly reduced by the crustal constraint, and thus contributes little to Enceladus' present heat budget. Tidal resonances could have played a role in a forming or freezing ocean less than 100 meters deep. The model is general: it applies to all icy satellites with a thin crust and a shallow or stratified ocean. Scaling rules relate the resonances and dissipation rate of a subsurface ocean to the ones of a surface ocean. If the ocean has low viscosity, the westward obliquity tide does not move the crust. Therefore, crustal dissipation due to dynamical obliquity tides can differ from the static prediction by up to a factor of two.

  12. Deep-Ocean Crusts as Telescopes: Using Live Radioisotopes to Probe Supernova Nucleosynthesis

    CERN Document Server

    Fields, B D; Ellis, Jonathan Richard; Fields, Brian D.; Hochmuth, Kathrin A.; Ellis, John

    2005-01-01

    Live 60Fe has recently been detected in a deep-ocean ferromanganese crust, isolated in layers dating from about 3 Myr ago. Since 60Fe has a mean life of 2.2 Myr, a near-Earth supernova is the only likely source for such a signal, and we explore here the consequences of a supernova origin. We combine the 60Fe data with several supernova nucleosynthesis models to calculate the supernova distance as a function of progenitor mass, finding an allowed range of 15-120 pc. We also predict the signals expected for several other radioisotopes, which are independent of the supernova distance. Species likely to be present near or above background levels are 10Be, 26Al, 53Mn, 182Hf and 244Pu. Of these, 182Hf and 244Pu are nearly background-free, presenting the best opportunities to provide strong confirmation of the supernova origin of the 60Fe signal, and to demonstrate that at least some supernovae are the source for the r-process. The accuracies of our predictions are hampered by large uncertainties in the predicted 60...

  13. New constraints on the sources and behavior of neodymium and hafnium in seawater from Pacific Ocean ferromanganese crusts

    Science.gov (United States)

    van de Flierdt, T.; Frank, M.; Lee, D.-C.; Halliday, A.N.; Reynolds, B.C.; Hein, J.R.

    2004-01-01

    The behavior of dissolved Hf in the marine environment is not well understood due to the lack of direct seawater measurements of Hf isotopes and the limited number of Hf isotope time-series obtained from ferromanganese crusts. In order to place better constraints on input sources and develop further applications, a combined Nd-Hf isotope time-series study of five Pacific ferromanganese crusts was carried out. The samples cover the past 38 Myr and their locations range from sites at the margin of the ocean to remote areas, sites from previously unstudied North and South Pacific areas, and water depths corresponding to deep and bottom waters. For most of the samples a broad coupling of Nd and Hf isotopes is observed. In the Equatorial Pacific ENd and EHf both decrease with water depth. Similarly, ENd and EHf both increase from the South to the North Pacific. These data indicate that the Hf isotopic composition is, in general terms, a suitable tracer for ocean circulation, since inflow and progressive admixture of bottom water is clearly identifiable. The time-series data indicate that inputs and outputs have been balanced throughout much of the late Cenozoic. A simple box model can constrain the relative importance of potential input sources to the North Pacific. Assuming steady state, the model implies significant contributions of radiogenic Nd and Hf from young circum-Pacific arcs and a subordinate role of dust inputs from the Asian continent for the dissolved Nd and Hf budget of the North Pacific. Some changes in ocean circulation that are clearly recognizable in Nd isotopes do not appear to be reflected by Hf isotopic compositions. At two locations within the Pacific Ocean a decoupling of Nd and Hf isotopes is found, indicating limited potential for Hf isotopes as a stand-alone oceanographic tracer and providing evidence of additional local processes that govern the Hf isotopic composition of deep water masses. In the case of the Southwest Pacific there is

  14. Birth of an oceanic spreading center at a magma-poor rift system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillard, Morgane; Sauter, Daniel; Tugend, Julie; Tomasi, Simon; Epin, Marie-Eva; Manatschal, Gianreto

    2017-11-08

    Oceanic crust is continuously created at mid-oceanic ridges and seafloor spreading represents one of the main processes of plate tectonics. However, if oceanic crust architecture, composition and formation at present-day oceanic ridges are largely described, the processes governing the birth of a spreading center remain enigmatic. Understanding the transition between inherited continental and new oceanic domains is a prerequisite to constrain one of the last major unsolved problems of plate tectonics, namely the formation of a stable divergent plate boundary. In this paper, we present newly released high-resolution seismic reflection profiles that image the complete transition from unambiguous continental to oceanic crusts in the Gulf of Guinea. Based on these high-resolution seismic sections we show that onset of oceanic seafloor spreading is associated with the formation of a hybrid crust in which thinned continental crust and/or exhumed mantle is sandwiched between magmatic intrusive and extrusive bodies. This crust results from a polyphase evolution showing a gradual transition from tectonic-driven to magmatic-driven processes. The results presented in this paper provide a characterization of the domain in which lithospheric breakup occurs and enable to define the processes controlling formation of a new plate boundary.

  15. Russian Federation Snow Depth and Ice Crust Surveys

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Russian Federation Snow Depth and Ice Crust Surveys, dataset DSI-9808, contains routine snow surveys that run throughout the cold season every 10 days (every five...

  16. Global maps of the CRUST 2.0 crustal components stripped gravity disturbances

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tenzer, R.; Hamayun, K.; Vajda, P.

    2009-01-01

    We use the CRUST 2.0 crustal model and the EGM08 geopotential model to compile global maps of the gravity disturbances corrected for the gravitational effects (attractions) of the topography and of the density contrasts of the oceans, sediments, ice, and the remaining crust down to the Moho

  17. Lithium isotope as a proxy for water/rock interaction between hydrothermal fluids and oceanic crust at Milos, Greece

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lou, U.-Lat; You, Chen-Feng; Wu, Shein-Fu; Chung, Chuan-Hsiung

    2014-05-01

    Hydrothermal activity at Milos in the Aegean island (Greece) is mainly located at rather shallow depth (about 5 m). It is interesting to compare these chemical compositions and the evolution processes of the hydrothermal fluids at deep sea hydrothermal vents in Mid-ocean Ridge (MOR). Lithium (Li) is a highly mobile element and its isotopic composition varies at different geological settings. Therefore, Li and its isotope could be used as an indicator for many geochemical processes. Since 6Li preferential retained in the mineral phase where 7Li is leached into fluid phase during basalt alteration, the Li isotopic fractionation between the rocks and the fluids reflect sensitively the degree of water-rock interaction. In this study, Bio-Rad AG-50W X8 cation exchange resin was used for purifying the hydrothermal fluids to separate Li from other matrix elements. The Li isotopic composition (δ7Li) was determined by Multi-collector Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (MC-ICP-MS) with precision better than 0.2‰ (2σ, n=20). The Li concentration in the hydrothermal fluids falls between 0.02 to 10.31 mM. The δ7Li values vary from +1.9 to +29.7‰, indicating significant seawater contamination have occurred. These hydrothermal fluids fit well with seawater and brine two end-member binary mixing model. During phase separation, lithium, boron, chlorine, iodine, bromine, sodium and potassium were enriched in the brine phase. On the other hand, aluminum, sulphur and iron were enriched in the vapor phase. There is no significant isotope fractionation between the two phases. The water/rock ratio (W/R) calculated is low (about 1.5 to 1.8) for the Milos fluids, restricted seawater recharge into the oceanic crust. Moreover, the oceanic crust in the region becomes less altered since the W/R is low. The δ7Li value of the hydrothermal fluids can be used as a sensitive tool for studying water-rock interaction.

  18. Basalts and picrites from a plume-type ophiolite in the South Qilian Accretionary Belt, Qilian Orogen: Accretion of a Cambrian Oceanic Plateau?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yuqi; Song, Shuguang; Yang, Liming; Su, Li; Niu, Yaoling; Allen, Mark B.; Xu, Xin

    2017-05-01

    Oceanic plateaus with high-Mg rocks in the present-day oceanic crust have attracted much attention for their proposed mantle-plume origins and abnormally high mantle potential temperatures (Tp). However, equivalent rocks in ancient oceanic environments are usually poorly preserved because of deformation and metamorphism. Here we present petrological, geochronological and geochemical data for pillow lavas from Cambrian ophiolites in the Lajishan and Yongjing regions of the South Qilian Accretionary Belt (SQAB), from the southern part of the Qilian Orogen, northern China. Three rock groups can be identified geochemically: (1) sub-alkaline basalts with enriched mid- ocean ridge basalt (E-MORB) affinity; (2) alkaline basalts with oceanic island basalt (OIB) features, probably derived from partial melting of an enriched mantle source; and (3) picrites with MgO (18-22 wt%). Cr-numbers [Cr# = Cr/(Cr + Al)] of spinels from the picrites suggest 18-21% degree of partial melting at the estimated mantle potential temperature (Tp) of 1489-1600 °C, equivalent to values of Cenozoic Hawaiian picrites (1500-1600 °C). Zircons from one gabbro sample yielded a U-Pb Concordia age of 525 ± 3 Ma, suggesting the oceanic crust formed in the Cambrian. Available evidence suggests that Cambrian mantle plume activity is preserved in the South Qilian Accretionary Belt, and influenced the regional tectonics: "jamming" of the trench by thick oceanic crust explains the emplacement and preservation of the oceanic plateau, and gave rise to the generation of concomitant Ordovician inner-oceanic island arc basalts via re-organisation of the subduction zones in the region.

  19. Uranium isotopic compositions of the crust and ocean: Age corrections, U budget and global extent of modern anoxia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tissot, François L. H.; Dauphas, Nicolas

    2015-10-01

    The 238U/235U isotopic composition of uranium in seawater can provide important insights into the modern U budget of the oceans. Using the double spike technique and a new data reduction method, we analyzed an array of seawater samples and 41 geostandards covering a broad range of geological settings relevant to low and high temperature geochemistry. Analyses of 18 seawater samples from geographically diverse sites from the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, Mediterranean Sea, Gulf of Mexico, Persian Gulf, and English Channel, together with literature data (n = 17), yield a δ238U value for modern seawater of -0.392 ± 0.005‰ relative to CRM-112a. Measurements of the uranium isotopic compositions of river water, lake water, evaporites, modern coral, shales, and various igneous rocks (n = 64), together with compilations of literature data (n = 380), allow us to estimate the uranium isotopic compositions of the various reservoirs involved in the modern oceanic uranium budget, as well as the fractionation factors associated with U incorporation into those reservoirs. Because the incorporation of U into anoxic/euxinic sediments is accompanied by large isotopic fractionation (ΔAnoxic/Euxinic-SW = +0.6‰), the size of the anoxic/euxinic sink strongly influences the δ238U value of seawater. Keeping all other fluxes constant, the flux of uranium in the anoxic/euxinic sink is constrained to be 7.0 ± 3.1 Mmol/yr (or 14 ± 3% of the total flux out of the ocean). This translates into an areal extent of anoxia into the modern ocean of 0.21 ± 0.09% of the total seafloor. This agrees with independent estimates and rules out a recent uranium budget estimate by Henderson and Anderson (2003). Using the mass fractions and isotopic compositions of various rock types in Earth's crust, we further calculate an average δ238U isotopic composition for the continental crust of -0.29 ± 0.03‰ corresponding to a 238U/235U isotopic ratio of 137.797 ± 0.005. We discuss the implications of

  20. Cobalt- and platinum-rich ferromanganese crusts and associated substrate rocks from the Marshall Islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hein, J.R.; Schwab, W.C.; Davis, A.

    1988-01-01

    Ferromanganese crusts cover most hard substrates on seafloor edifices in the central Pacific basin. Crust samples and their associated substrates from seven volcanic edifices of Cretaceous age along the Ratak chain of the Marshall Islands are discussed. The two most abundant substrate lithologies recovered were limestone, dominantly fore-reef slope deposits, and volcanic breccia composed primarily of differentiated alkalic basalt and hawaiite clasts in a phosphatized carbonate matrix. The degree of mass wasting on the slopes of these seamounts is inversely correlated with the thickness of crusts. Crusts are generally thin on limestone substrate. Away from areas of active mass-wasting processes, and large atolls, crusts may be as thick as 10 cm maximum. The dominant crystalline phase in the Marshall Islands crusts is ??-MnO2 (vernadite). High concentrations of cobalt, platinum and rhodium strongly suggest that the Marshall Islands crusts are a viable source for these important metals. Many metals and the rare earth elements vary significantly on a fine scale through most crusts, thus reflecting the abundances of different host mineral phases in the crusts and changes in seawater composition with time. High concentrations of cobalt, nickel, titanium, zinc, lead, cerium and platinum result from a combination of their substitution in the iron and manganese phases and their oxidation potential. ?? 1988.

  1. 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

  2. Magnetic crustal thickness in Greenland from CHAMP and Ørsted data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Maule, Cathrine Fox; Purucker, Michael E.; Olsen, Nils

    2005-01-01

    and observatory data. After correcting for the remanent magnetization, we determine the vertically integrated magnetization of the crust. Making some simplifying assumptions about the susceptibility, the thickness of the magnetic crust is determined by iteratively improving an initial crustal thickness model...

  3. Deep Crustal Melting and the Survival of Continental Crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitney, D.; Teyssier, C. P.; Rey, P. F.; Korchinski, M.

    2017-12-01

    Plate convergence involving continental lithosphere leads to crustal melting, which ultimately stabilizes the crust because it drives rapid upward flow of hot deep crust, followed by rapid cooling at shallow levels. Collision drives partial melting during crustal thickening (at 40-75 km) and/or continental subduction (at 75-100 km). These depths are not typically exceeded by crustal rocks that are exhumed in each setting because partial melting significantly decreases viscosity, facilitating upward flow of deep crust. Results from numerical models and nature indicate that deep crust moves laterally and then vertically, crystallizing at depths as shallow as 2 km. Deep crust flows en masse, without significant segregation of melt into magmatic bodies, over 10s of kms of vertical transport. This is a major mechanism by which deep crust is exhumed and is therefore a significant process of heat and mass transfer in continental evolution. The result of vertical flow of deep, partially molten crust is a migmatite dome. When lithosphere is under extension or transtension, the deep crust is solicited by faulting of the brittle upper crust, and the flow of deep crust in migmatite domes traverses nearly the entire thickness of orogenic crust in Recognition of the importance of migmatite (gneiss) domes as archives of orogenic deep crust is applicable to determining the chemical and physical properties of continental crust, as well as mechanisms and timescales of crustal differentiation.

  4. Consequences of the low density of the lunar primary crust on its magmatic history (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michaut, C.; Thorey, C.

    2013-12-01

    The lunar highlands are very old, with ages covering a timespan between 4.5 to 4.2 Gyr, and probably formed by flotation of light plagioclase minerals on top of the lunar magma ocean. The lunar crust provides thus an invaluable evidence of the geological and magmatic processes occurring in the first times of the terrestrial planets history. According to the last estimates from the GRAIL mission, the lunar primary crust is particularly light and relatively thick. This low-density crust acted as a barrier for the dense primary mantle melts. This is particularly evident in the fact that subsequent mare basalts erupted primarily within large impact basins: at least part of the crust must have been removed for the magma to reach the surface. However, the trajectory of the magma from the mantle to the surface is unknown. Here, we provide evidence of intrusions within the crust of the Moon as surface deformations in the form of low-slope lunar domes and floor-fractured craters. All these geological features have morphologies consistent with models of magma spreading at depth and deforming an overlying elastic layer. Furthermore, at floor-fractured craters, the deformation is contained within the crater interior, suggesting that the overpressure at the origin of magma ascent and intrusion was less than the pressure due to the weight of the crust removed by impact. The pressure release due to material removal by impact is significant over a depth equivalent to the crater radius. Because many of these floor-fractured craters are relatively small, i.e. less than 20 to 30 km in radius, this observation suggests that the magma at the origin of the intrusion was already stored within or just below the crust, in deeper intrusions. Thus, a large fraction of the mantle melt might have stored at depth below or within the light primary crust before reaching shallower layers. And hence, magma intrusions must have had a large influence on the thermal and geological evolution of the

  5. Magnetically-driven oceans on Jovian satellites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gissinger, C.; Petitdemange, L.

    2017-12-01

    During the last decade, data from Galileo space missions have added strong support for the existence of subsurface liquid oceans on several moons of Jupiter. For instance, it is now commonly accepted that an electrically conducting fluid beneath the icy crust of Europa's surface may explain the variations of the induced field measured near the satellite. These observations have raised many questions regarding the size and the salinity of such subsurface ocean, or how and why the water remains liquid. In addition, the hydrodynamics of such oceans is mostly unknown. These questions are of primary importance since Europa is often considered as a good candidate for the presence of life beyond the Earth. Here, we present the first numerical modeling of the rapidly-rotating magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) flow generated in Europa's interior: due to Jupiter's rotation with respect to Europa, we show that the Lorentz force induced by the time-varying Jovian magnetic field is able to generate an oceanic flow of a few km/h. Our results are understood in the framework of a simple theoretical model and we obtain a scaling law for the prediction of the mean oceanic velocity and the total heating generated inside the ocean of Europa. Finally, by comparing our simulations to Galileo observations, we make predictions on both the thickness and the electrical conductivity of the ocean of different Jovian's satellites.

  6. Definition of the continent-ocean boundary of India and the surrounding oceanic regions from Magsat data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, B. P.; Rajaram, Mita; Bapat, V. J.

    1991-06-01

    Magsat studies over the Indian region and adjoining areas show that the continental-oceanic contrasts appear more distinctly in the equivalent magnetization solution than in the anomaly maps. The vertical component ( Z) is found to be more useful for the equatorial regions. It is also noted that, in general, the continental crust has a higher magnetization than the oceanic crust. Further, the continental crust seems to extend into the Arabian Sea across a part of the west coast. A similar continuation is seen in the northern part of the Bay of Bengal. The west coast result is corroborated using land and marine Bouguer gravity anomalies.

  7. Stress analysis and scaling studies of corium crusts

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Feng, Z.; Engelstad, R.L.; Lovell, E.G.; Corradini, M.L.

    1992-01-01

    In the event of a severe accident in a LWR, water may be input to cool the molten mixture of fuel and concrete. A number of structural models are developed and used to predict whether a crust will be formed and remain stable between the melt and water. Bending stresses and membrane stresses due to pressure loadings and the temperature differential are considered in the analyses to investigate the stability of the crust as a function of the time, thickness and span. The results from parametric studies show the conditions under which a crust could develop, and how such structural models could be used to determine scaling effects and provide correlations to prototypic accident situations. (orig.)

  8. Structural variation of the oceanic Moho in the Pacific plate revealed by active-source seismic data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohira, Akane; Kodaira, Shuichi; Nakamura, Yasuyuki; Fujie, Gou; Arai, Ryuta; Miura, Seiichi

    2017-10-01

    The characteristics of the oceanic Moho are known to depend on various factors, such as seafloor spreading rate, crustal age, and accretionary processes at a ridge. However, the effect of local magmatic activities on the seismic signature of the Moho is poorly understood. Here an active-source reflection and refraction survey is used to investigate crustal structure and Moho characteristics along a >1000-km-long profile southeast of the Shatsky Rise in a Pacific Ocean basin formed from the Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous and spanning the onset of Shatsky Rise volcanism. Although the seismic velocity structure estimated from the refraction data showed typical characteristics of the oceanic crust of the old Pacific plate, the appearance of the Moho reflections was spatially variable. We observed clear Moho reflections such as those to be expected where the spreading rate is fast to intermediate only at the southwestern end of the profile, whereas Moho reflections were diffuse, weak, or absent along other parts of the profile. The poor Moho reflections can be explained by the presence of a thick crust-mantle transition layer, which is temporally coincident with the formation of the Shatsky Rise. We inferred that the crust-mantle transition layer was formed by changes in on-axis accretion process or modification of the primary Moho by off-axis magmatism, induced by magmatic activity of the Shatsky Rise.

  9. [Development and succession of artificial biological soil crusts and water holding characteristics of topsoil].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Li; Chen, Xiao-Guo; Zhang, Gao-Ke; Lan, Shu-Bin; Zhang, De-Lu; Hu, Chun-Xiang

    2014-03-01

    In order to understand the improving effects of cyanobacterial inoculation on water retention of topsoil in desert regions, this work focused on the development and succession of biological soil crusts and water holding characteristics of topsoil after cyanobacterial inoculation in Qubqi Desert. The results showed that after the artificial inoculation of desert cyanobacteria, algal crusts were quickly formed, and in some microenvironments direct succession of the algal crusts to moss crusts occurred after 2-3 years. With the development and succession of biological soil crusts, the topsoil biomass, polysaccharides content, crust thickness and porosity increased, while the soil bulk density decreased. At the same time, with crust development and succession, the topsoil texture became finer and the percents of fine soil particles including silt and clay contents increased, while the percents of coarse soil particles (sand content) decreased proportionately. In addition, it was found that with crust development and succession, the water holding capacity and water content of topsoil showed an increasing trend, namely: moss crust > algal crusts > shifting sand. The water content (or water holding capacity) in algal and moss crusts were 1.1-1.3 and 1.8-2.2 times of those in shifting sand, respectively. Correlation analysis showed that the water holding capacity and water content of topsoil were positively correlated with the crust biomass, polysaccharides content, thickness, bulk density, silt and clay content; while negatively correlated with the porosity and sand content. Furthermore, stepwise regression analysis showed that the main factor affecting water content was the clay content, while that affecting water holding capacity was the porosity.

  10. Phosphatization Associated Features of Ferromanganese Crusts at Lemkein Seamount, Marshall Islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, J.; Lee, I.; Park, B. K.; Kim, J.

    2014-12-01

    Old layers of ferromanganese crusts, especially in the Pacific Ocean, have been affected by phosphatization. Ferromanganese crusts on Lemkein seamount in Marshall Islands also are phosphatized (3.3 to 4.2 wt % of P concentration). Furthermore, they have characteristic features that are different from other ferromanganese crusts. These features occur near the phosphorite, which were thought to fill the pore spaces of ferromanganese crusts. Inside the features, ferromanganese crusts are botryoidally precipitated from the round-boundary. The features of the phosphatized lower crusts of Lemkein seamount are observed using microscope and SEM. Elemental compositions of the selected samples were analyzed by SEM-EDS. Based on the observation and analysis of samples, three characteristic structures are identified: (1) phosphate-filled circles, (2) tongue-shaped framboidal crust, and (3) massive framboidal crust. The phosphate-filled circles are mostly composed of phosphorite, and they include trace fossils such as foraminifera. Phosphatized ferromanganese crusts exist at the boundary of this structure. The tongue-shaped crust is connected with the lips downward, and ferromanganese crusts inside the tongue show distinct growth rim. The massive framboidal crust is located below the tongue. Ferromanganese crusts in the massive framboidal crust are enveloped by phosphate, and some of the crusts are phosphatized. Around the structures, Mn oxide phase is concentrated as a shape of corona on BSE image. All of the structures are in the phosphatized crusts that show columnar growth of ferromanganese crusts and have sub-parallel lamination. These observation and chemical analysis of the ferromanganese crusts can provide a clue of diagenetic processes during the formation of ferromanganese crusts.

  11. A Geochemical View on the Interplay Between Earth's Mantle and Crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chauvel, C.

    2017-12-01

    Over most of Earth history, oceanic and continental crust was created and destroyed. The formation of both types of crust involves the crystallization and differentiation of magmas producing by mantle melting. Their destruction proceeds by mechanical erosion and weathering above sea level, chemical alteration on the seafloor, and bulk recycling in subduction zones. All these processes enrich of some chemical element and deplete others but each process has its own effect on chemical elements. While the flux of material from mantle to crust is well understood, the return flux is much more complex. In contrast to mantle processes, erosion, weathering, chemical alteration and sedimentary processes strongly decouple elements such as the rare earths and high-field strength elements due to their different solubilities in surface fluids and mineralogical sorting during transport. Soluble elements such as strontium or uranium are quantitatively transported to the ocean by rivers and decoupled from less soluble elements. Over geological time, such decoupling significantly influences the extent to which chemical elements remain at the Earth's surface or find their way back to the mantle through subduction zones. For example, elements like Hf or Nd are retained in heavy minerals on continents whereas U and Sr are transported to the oceans and then in subduction zones to the mantle. The consequence is that different radiogenic isotopic systems give disparate age estimates for the continental crust; e.g, Hf ages could be too old. In subduction zones, chemical elements are also decoupled, due to contrasting behavior during dehydration or melting in subducting slabs. The material sent back into the mantle is generally enriched in non-soluble elements while most fluid-mobile elements return to the crust. This, in turn, affects the relationship between the Rb-Sr, Sm-Nd, Lu-Hf and U-Th-Pb isotopic systems and creates correlations unlike those based on magmatic processes. By

  12. 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

  13. Investigation of acrylamide formation on bakery products using a crust-like model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Açar, Ozge C; Gökmen, Vural

    2009-12-01

    Baking is a complex process where a temperature gradient occurs within the product as a result of simultaneous heat and mass transfers. This behaviour makes the physical parameters (baking temperature and product dimensions) as effective as the chemical parameters on the rate of acrylamide formation in bakery foods. In this study, the change of temperature in different locations of the sample was shown as influenced by the product thickness. The temperature values were close to each other in the sample having thickness of 1 mm (crust model). The product temperature rapidly increased to the oven temperature. A temperature gradient was recorded in the sample having a thickness of 10 mm. As a result, the product temperature did not exceed 100 degrees C within a baking time of 30 min. The product thickness significantly influenced the rate of acrylamide formation during baking. Acrylamide concentration rapidly increased to 411+/-49 ng/g within 8 min in the crust model sample. However, no acrylamide was detected in the thicker sample within 15 min under the same conditions, because the moisture content was still above 10%. The crust model was considered useful to test the effectiveness of different mitigation strategies in bakery foods.

  14. High Temperature Logging and Monitoring Instruments to Explore and Drill Deep into Hot Oceanic Crust.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Denchik, N.; Pezard, P. A.; Ragnar, A.; Jean-Luc, D.; Jan, H.

    2014-12-01

    Drilling an entire section of the oceanic crust and through the Moho has been a goal of the scientific community for more than half of a century. On the basis of ODP and IODP experience and data, this will require instruments and strategies working at temperature far above 200°C (reached, for example, at the bottom of DSDP/ODP Hole 504B), and possibly beyond 300°C. Concerning logging and monitoring instruments, progress were made over the past ten years in the context of the HiTI ("High Temperature Instruments") project funded by the european community for deep drilling in hot Icelandic geothermal holes where supercritical conditions and a highly corrosive environment are expected at depth (with temperatures above 374 °C and pressures exceeding 22 MPa). For example, a slickline tool (memory tool) tolerating up to 400°C and wireline tools up to 300°C were developed and tested in Icelandic high-temperature geothermal fields. The temperature limitation of logging tools was defined to comply with the present limitation in wireline cables (320°C). As part of this new set of downhole tools, temperature, pressure, fluid flow and casing collar location might be measured up to 400°C from a single multisensor tool. Natural gamma radiation spectrum, borehole wall ultrasonic images signal, and fiber optic cables (using distributed temperature sensing methods) were also developed for wireline deployment up to 300°C and tested in the field. A wireline, dual laterolog electrical resistivity tool was also developed but could not be field tested as part of HiTI. This new set of tools constitutes a basis for the deep exploration of the oceanic crust in the future. In addition, new strategies including the real-time integration of drilling parameters with modeling of the thermo-mechanical status of the borehole could be developed, using time-lapse logging of temperature (for heat flow determination) and borehole wall images (for hole stability and in-situ stress determination

  15. Density Sorting During the Evolution of Continental Crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelemen, P. B.; Behn, M. D.; Hacker, B. R.

    2015-12-01

    , while buoyant lithologies accumulate in thickening crust. Mantle return flow and radioactive heating in thick, felsic crust maintains high T. The crustal volume in this region grows at 760 m3/yr/m of strike length. Moho-depth earthquakes may be due to localized deformation and thermal runaway in weak layers and diapir margins.

  16. Crustal control of dissipative ocean tides in Enceladus and other icy moons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beuthe, Mikael

    2016-12-01

    Could tidal dissipation within Enceladus' subsurface ocean account for the observed heat flow? Earthlike models of dynamical tides give no definitive answer because they neglect the influence of the crust. I propose here the first model of dissipative tides in a subsurface ocean, by combining the Laplace Tidal Equations with the membrane approach. For the first time, it is possible to compute tidal dissipation rates within the crust, ocean, and mantle in one go. I show that oceanic dissipation is strongly reduced by the crustal constraint, and thus contributes little to Enceladus' present heat budget. Tidal resonances could have played a role in a forming or freezing ocean less than 100 m deep. The model is general: it applies to all icy satellites with a thin crust and a shallow ocean. Scaling rules relate the resonances and dissipation rate of a subsurface ocean to the ones of a surface ocean. If the ocean has low viscosity, the westward obliquity tide does not move the crust. Therefore, crustal dissipation due to dynamical obliquity tides can differ from the static prediction by up to a factor of two.

  17. Asymmetric Post-Magma Ocean Crust-Building on the Lunar Nearside

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elardo, S. M.; Laneuville, M.; McCubbin, F. M.; Shearer, C. K.

    2018-05-01

    Our experiments show that the KREEP reservoir on the lunar nearside reduces the melting temperature of Mg-suite source rocks, leading to asymmetric crust-building magmatism independent of any contribution from radiogenic heating.

  18. Molybdenum Cycling During Crust Formation and Destruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greaney, A. T.; Rudnick, R. L.

    2016-12-01

    Molybdenum geochemistry has become an important tool for tracking the redox state of the early atmosphere and oceans as well as the emergence and sustainability of Mo-cofactored enzymes. However, in order for Mo to be enriched in the oceans, it must first be weathered out of the crust. Sulfides that weather in the presence of atmospheric O2have historically been deemed the predominant crustal source of Mo. Here, we test this assumption by determining the mineralogical hosts of Mo in Archean, Proterozoic, and Phanerozoic upper crustal rocks, using LA-ICP-MS. We also investigate Mo behavior during igneous differentiation and continental crust formation. We find that molybdenite, MoS2, is a weatherable sulfide source of Mo, but common igneous sulfides are not because their Mo concentrations are too low. However, molybdenite is uncommon in the upper continental crust. By contrast, volcanic glass is much more abundant and is a significant weatherable source of Mo that readily breaks down to release oxidized, soluble Mo whether or not atmospheric O2is present. Other common crustal mineral hosts of Mo are Ti-bearing phases like titanite, ilmenite, magnetite, and rutile that are resistant to weathering. Significant Mo depletion (relative to Ce and Pr) is observed in nearly every granitic rock analyzed in our study, but is not observed in OIB or MORB (Jenner and O'Neill, 2012). There are two possible reasons for this: 1) Mo is removed from cooling plutons during fluid expulsion, or 2) Mo is fractionated during igneous differentiation. The first scenario is a likely explanation given the solubility of oxidized Mo. However, correlations between Mo/Ce and Nb/La in several plutonic suites suggest a fractionating phase like rutile may sequester Mo in the lower crust. Additionally, a correlation between Mo/Ce and inferred tectonic setting (enrichments observed in rift-related plutons) suggest an overall tectonic influence on the availability of Mo in the upper crust.

  19. Crustal Stretching Style and Lower Crust Flow of the South China Sea Northern Margin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bai, Y.; Dong, D.; Runlin, D.

    2017-12-01

    There is a controversy about crustal stretching style of the South China Sea (SCS) northern margin mainly due to considerable uncertainty of stretching factor estimation, for example, as much as 40% of upper crust extension (Walsh et al., 1991) would be lost by seismic profiles due to poor resolution. To discover and understand crustal stretching style and lower crustal flow on the whole, we map the Moho and Conrad geometries based on gravity inversion constrained by deep seismic profiles, then according to the assumption of upper and lower crust initial thickness, upper and lower crust stretching factors are estimated. According to the comparison between upper and lower crust stretching factors, the SCS northern margin could be segmented into three parts, (1) sediment basins where upper crust is stretched more than lower crust, (2) COT regions where lower crust is stretched more than upper crust, (3) other regions where the two layers have similar stretching factors. Stretching factor map shows that lower crust flow happened in both of COT and sediment basin regions where upper crust decouples with lower crust due to high temperature. Pressure contrast by sediment loading in basins and erosion in sediment-source regions will lead to lower crust flow away from sediment sink to source. Decoupled and fractured upper crust is stretched further by sediment loading and the following compensation would result in relatively thick lower crust than upper crust. In COT regions with thin sediment coverage, low-viscosity lower crust is easier to thin in extensional environment, also the lower crust tends to flow away induced by magma upwelling. Therefore, continental crust on the margin is not stretching in a constant way but varies with the tectonic setting changes. This work is supported by National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 41506055, 41476042) and Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities China (No.17CX02003A).

  20. Assessing the Nature of Crust in the Central Red Sea Using Potential Fields and Seismic Reflection Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, W.; Mitchell, N. C.; Kalnins, L. M.; A Y, I.

    2017-12-01

    The Red Sea is considered an important example of a rifted continental shield proceeding to a seafloor spreading stage of development, and the transition of crustal types there from stretched continental to oceanic should mark the onset of significant mantle melting. However, whether the crust in the central Red Sea is continental or oceanic has been controversial. To contribute to this debate, we assessed the geometry of the basement from potential fields and seismic reflection data. Prior interpretations of basement in deep seismic reflection profiles were first verified using Werner deconvolution of marine magnetic data. The seismic depths were then used to reconstruct basement depth corrected for evaporite and other sediment loading. We found that the basement deepening with distance is similar to that of oceanic crust near mantle plumes such as the Reykjanes Ridge. In both cases, the data show a 35-80 km wide axial plateau followed by a steep 0.4-1.7 km deepening over 30-50 km distance. It has also been suggested that the variability of free-air anomalies observed in lines parallel to the axis is due to crossing oceanic short-offset fracture zones. We assessed this idea by inverting the gravity anomalies for basement relief. Using densities appropriate for oceanic crust and a modified slab formula, we found values for root-mean square (RMS) relief that are comparable to those of weakly sedimented regions of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. Forward calculations using 2D modelling revealed that the errors in RMS basement relief caused by the slab approximation are 30%, leaving true RMS basement relief still within the range of values for oceanic crust. While these observations by themselves do not rule out an extremely extended continental crust interpretation, combined with previous analysis of refraction velocities, which are oceanic-like, they are supportive of an oceanic crustal interpretation. Additionally, the RMS values and the cross-axis basement relief both

  1. Crust formation and its effect on the molten pool coolability

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Park, R.J.; Lee, S.J.; Sim, S.K. [Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute, Taejon (Korea, Republic of)

    1995-09-01

    Experimental and analytical studies of the crust formation and its effect on the molten pool coolability have been performed to examine the crust formation process as a function of boundary temperatures as well as to investigate heat transfer characteristics between molten pool and overlying water in order to evaluate coolability of the molten pool. The experimental test results have shown that the surface temperature of the bottom plate is a dominant parameter in the crust formation process of the molten pool. It is also found that the crust thickness of the case with direct coolant injection into the molten pool is greater than that of the case with a heat exchanger. Increasing mass flow rate of direct coolant injection to the molten pool does not affect the temperature of molten pool after the crust has been formed in the molten pool because the crust behaves as a thermal barrier. The Nusselt number between the molten pool and the coolant of the case with no crust formation is greater than that of the case with crust formation. The results of FLOW-3D analyses have shown that the temperature distribution contributes to the crust formation process due to Rayleigh-Benard natural convection flow.

  2. Microbial Life of North Pacific Oceanic Crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schumann, G.; Koos, R.; Manz, W.; Reitner, J.

    2003-12-01

    Information on the microbiology of the deep subsurface is necessary in order to understand the factors controlling the rate and extent of the microbially catalyzed reactions that influence the geophysical properties of these environments. Drilling into 45-Ma oceanic basaltic crust in a deepwater environment during ODP Leg 200 provided a promising opportunity to explore the abundance, diversity and activity of micro-organisms. The combined use of culture-independent molecular phylogenetic analyses and enrichment culture techniques is an advantageous approach in investigating subsurface microbial ecosystems. Enrichment culture methods allow the evaluation of potential activities and functions. Microbiological investigations revealed few aerobic cultivable, in part hitherto unknown, micro-organisms in deep submarine sediments and basaltic lava flows. 16S rDNA sequencing of isolates from sediment revealed the next relatives to be members of the genera Halomonas, Pseudomonas, and Lactobacillus. Within the Pseudomonadaceae the closest relative is Acinetobacter sp., which was isolated from a deep subsurface environment. The next phylogenetical relatives within the Halomonadaceae are bacteria typically isolated from Soda lakes, which are considered as model of early life conditions. Interestingly, not only sediment bacteria could be obtained in pure culture. Aerobic strains could also be successfully isolated from the massive tholeiitic basalt layer at a depth of 76.16 mbsf (46 m below the sediment/basement contact). These particular isolates are gram-positive with low G+C content of DNA, phylogenetically affiliated to the phylum Firmicutes. The closest neighbors are e.g. a marine Bacillus isolated from the Gulf of Mexico and a low G+C gram-positive bacterium, which belongs to the microbial flora in the deepest sea mud of the Mariana Trench, isolated from a depth of 10,897 m. Based on the similarity values, the isolates represent hitherto undescribed species of the deep

  3. Comparison of publically available Moho depth and crustal thickness grids with newly derived grids by 3D gravity inversion for the High Arctic region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lebedeva-Ivanova, Nina; Gaina, Carmen; Minakov, Alexander; Kashubin, Sergey

    2016-04-01

    We derived Moho depth and crustal thickness for the High Arctic region by 3D forward and inverse gravity modelling method in the spectral domain (Minakov et al. 2012) using lithosphere thermal gravity anomaly correction (Alvey et al., 2008); a vertical density variation for the sedimentary layer and lateral crustal variation density. Recently updated grids of bathymetry (Jakobsson et al., 2012), gravity anomaly (Gaina et al, 2011) and dynamic topography (Spasojevic & Gurnis, 2012) were used as input data for the algorithm. TeMAr sedimentary thickness grid (Petrov et al., 2013) was modified according to the most recently published seismic data, and was re-gridded and utilized as input data. Other input parameters for the algorithm were calibrated using seismic crustal scale profiles. The results are numerically compared with publically available grids of the Moho depth and crustal thickness for the High Arctic region (CRUST 1 and GEMMA global grids; the deep Arctic Ocean grids by Glebovsky et al., 2013) and seismic crustal scale profiles. The global grids provide coarser resolution of 0.5-1.0 geographic degrees and not focused on the High Arctic region. Our grids better capture all main features of the region and show smaller error in relation to the seismic crustal profiles compare to CRUST 1 and GEMMA grids. Results of 3D gravity modelling by Glebovsky et al. (2013) with separated geostructures approach show also good fit with seismic profiles; however these grids cover the deep part of the Arctic Ocean only. Alvey A, Gaina C, Kusznir NJ, Torsvik TH (2008). Integrated crustal thickness mapping and plate recon-structions for the high Arctic. Earth Planet Sci Lett 274:310-321. Gaina C, Werner SC, Saltus R, Maus S (2011). Circum-Arctic mapping project: new magnetic and gravity anomaly maps of the Arctic. Geol Soc Lond Mem 35, 39-48. Glebovsky V.Yu., Astafurova E.G., Chernykh A.A., Korneva M.A., Kaminsky V.D., Poselov V.A. (2013). Thickness of the Earth's crust in the

  4. The Impact of Fe-Ti Oxide Concentration on the Structural Rigidity of the Lower Oceanic Crust, Atlantis Bank, Southwest Indian Ridge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deans, J. R.; Winkler, D. A.

    2017-12-01

    Fe-Ti oxides are important components of oceanic core complexes (OCC) formed at slow-spreading ridges, since Fe-Ti oxide phases form throughout the crustal column and are weaker than silicate phases. This study investigated the predicted relationship between the presence and concentration of Fe-Ti oxides and the presence/intensity of crystal-plastic deformation in samples from Atlantis Bank, Southwest Indian Ridge (SWIR). Atlantis Bank is an OCC that formed through the exhumation of lower oceanic crust along a detachment shear zone/fault. OCCs form along slow-spreading ridges and are characterized by the complex interactions between magmatism and crustal extension, thus, making them more susceptible to crystal-plastic deformation at higher temperatures and for weaker phases like Fe-Ti oxides to preferentially partition strain. Atlantis Bank has been the focus of many scientific expeditions to various sites including; Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Holes 735B and 1105A, and the International Oceanic Discovery Program (IODP) Hole U1473A. A total of 589 thin sections from all three holes were analyzed using the software package Fiji to calculate the Fe-Ti oxide concentration within the thin sections. The Fe-Ti oxide percentage was correlated with the crystal-plastic fabric (CPF) intensity, from 0-5 (no foliation - ultramylonite), for each thin section using the statistical software R. All three holes show a positive correlation between the abundance of Fe-Ti oxides and the CPF intensity. Specifically, 76.3% of samples with a concentration of 5% or more Fe-Ti oxides have a corresponding CPF intensity value of 2 or more (porphyroclastic foliation - ultramylonitic). The positive correlation may be explained by the Fe-Ti oxides preferentially partitioning strain, especially at temperatures below where dry plagioclase can recrystallize. This allows for a mechanism of continued slip along the shear zone or form new shear zones at amphibolite grade conditions while the lower

  5. Ferromanganese crusts as indicators for paleoceanographic events in the NE Atlantic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koschinsky, A.; Halbach, P.; Hein, J. R.; Mangini, A.

    Hydrogenetic ferromanganese crusts reflect the chemical conditions of the seawater from which they formed. Fine-scale geochemical analysis of crust layers in combination with age determinations can therefore be used to investigate paleoceanographic changes which are recorded in geochemical gradients in the crusts. At Tropic seamount (off northwest Africa), uniform crust growth influenced by terrigenous input from the African continent occurred during approximately the past 12Ma. Phosphatization of these crusts is minor. In contrast, crusts from Lion seamount, located between Madeira and the Portuguese coast, display a much more variable growth history. A pronounced increase in Ni, Cu, and Zn is observed in some intervals of the crusts, which probably reflects increased surface productivity. A thick older phosphatized generation occurs in many samples. Hydrographic profiles indicate that Mediterranean outflow water (MOW) may play an important role in the composition of these crusts. 10Be dating of one sample confirms that the interruption of the MOW during the Messinian salinity crisis (6.2-5Ma ago) resulted in changes in element composition. Sr-isotope dating of the apatite phase of the old crust generation has been carried out to obtain a minimum age for the older generation of Atlantic crusts and to determine whether crust phosphatization in the Atlantic can be related to phosphatization episodes recorded in Pacific crusts. The preliminary data show that the old phosphatized crust generation might be as old as approximately 30-40Ma.

  6. Processes of formation of ferromanganese manganese nodules and crusts

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Nath, B.N.

    oceanic cycling assume importance in view of the fact that it is the tenth most abundant element in the Earth’s crust. It occurs in two valency states whose stability lies within the limits of the natural importance. Oxides of manganese also have high... cations. Thus, both can migrate under the influence of redox gradients. Fractionation between this pair can probably occur in anoxic and high temperature conditions. In balancing the Mn between different oceanic reservoirs, Goldschmidt in 1954 has...

  7. Four billion years of ophiolites reveal secular trends in oceanic crust formation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Harald Furnes

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available We combine a geological, geochemical and tectonic dataset from 118 ophiolite complexes of the major global Phanerozoic orogenic belts with similar datasets of ophiolites from 111 Precambrian greenstone belts to construct an overview of oceanic crust generation over 4 billion years. Geochemical discrimination systematics built on immobile trace elements reveal that the basaltic units of the Phanerozoic ophiolites are dominantly subduction-related (75%, linked to backarc processes and characterized by a strong MORB component, similar to ophiolites in Precambrian greenstone sequences (85%. The remaining 25% Phanerozoic subduction-unrelated ophiolites are mainly (74% of Mid-Ocean-Ridge type (MORB type, in contrast to the equal proportion of Rift/Continental Margin, Plume, and MORB type ophiolites in the Precambrian greenstone belts. Throughout the Phanerozoic there are large geochemical variations in major and trace elements, but for average element values calculated in 5 bins of 100 million year intervals there are no obvious secular trends. By contrast, basaltic units in the ophiolites of the Precambrian greenstones (calculated in 12 bins of 250 million years intervals, starting in late Paleo- to early Mesoproterozoic (ca. 2.0–1.8 Ga, exhibit an apparent decrease in the average values of incompatible elements such as Ti, P, Zr, Y and Nb, and an increase in the compatible elements Ni and Cr with deeper time to the end of the Archean and into the Hadean. These changes can be attributed to decreasing degrees of partial melting of the upper mantle from Hadean/Archean to Present. The onset of geochemical changes coincide with the timing of detectible changes in the structural architecture of the ophiolites such as greater volumes of gabbro and more common sheeted dyke complexes, and lesser occurrences of ocelli (varioles in the pillow lavas in ophiolites younger than 2 Ga. The global data from the Precambrian ophiolites, representative of nearly 50

  8. Crustal thickness of Antarctica estimated using data from gravimetric satellites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Llubes, Muriel; Seoane, Lucia; Bruinsma, Sean; Rémy, Frédérique

    2018-04-01

    Computing a better crustal thickness model is still a necessary improvement in Antarctica. In this remote continent where almost all the bedrock is covered by the ice sheet, seismic investigations do not reach a sufficient spatial resolution for geological and geophysical purposes. Here, we present a global map of Antarctic crustal thickness computed from space gravity observations. The DIR5 gravity field model, built from GOCE and GRACE gravimetric data, is inverted with the Parker-Oldenburg iterative algorithm. The BEDMAP products are used to estimate the gravity effect of the ice and the rocky surface. Our result is compared to crustal thickness calculated from seismological studies and the CRUST1.0 and AN1 models. Although the CRUST1.0 model shows a very good agreement with ours, its spatial resolution is larger than the one we obtain with gravimetric data. Finally, we compute a model in which the crust-mantle density contrast is adjusted to fit the Moho depth from the CRUST1.0 model. In East Antarctica, the resulting density contrast clearly shows higher values than in West Antarctica.

  9. Changes in Ocean Circulation with an Ice-Free Arctic: Reconstructing Early Holocene Arctic Ocean Circulation Using Geochemical Signals from Individual Neogloboquadrina pachyderma (sinistral) Shells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Livsey, C.; Spero, H. J.; Kozdon, R.

    2016-12-01

    The impacts of sea ice decrease and consequent hydrologic changes in the Arctic Ocean will be experienced globally as ocean and atmospheric temperatures continue to rise, though it is not evident to what extent. Understanding the structure of the Arctic water column during the early/mid Holocene sea ice minimum ( 6-10 kya), a post-glacial analogue of a seasonally ice-free Arctic, will help us to predict what the changes we can expect as the Earth warms over the next century. Neogloboquadrina pachyderma (sinistral; Nps) is a species of planktonic foraminifera that dominates assemblages in the polar oceans. This species grows its chambers (ontogenetic calcite) in the surface waters and subsequently descends through the water column to below the mixed layer where it quickly adds a thick crust of calcite (Kohfeld et al., 1996). Therefore, geochemical signals from both the surface waters and sub-mixed layer depths are captured within single Nps shells. We were able to target ion mass spectrometry (SIMS), therefore capturing signals from both the ontogenetic and crust calcite in single Nps shells. This data was combined with laser ablation- inductively coupled mass spectrometry (LA-ICPMS) Mg/Ca profiles of trace metals through the two layers of calcite of the same shells, to determine the thermal structure of the water column. Combining δ18O, temperature, and salinity gradients from locations across the Arctic basin allow us to reconstruct the hydrography of the early Holocene Arctic sea ice minimum. These results will be compared with modern Arctic water column characteristics in order to develop a conceptual model of Arctic Ocean oceanographic change due to global warming. Kohfeld, K.E., Fairbanks, R.G., Smith, S.L., Walsh, I.D., 1996. Neogloboquadrina pachyderma(sinistral coiling) as paleoceanographic tracers in polar oceans: Evidence from northeast water polynya plankton tows, sediment traps, and surface sediments. Paleoceanography 11, 679-699.

  10. Moho vs crust-mantle boundary: Evolution of an idea

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Reilly, Suzanne Y.; Griffin, W. L.

    2013-12-01

    The concept that the Mohorovicic Discontinuity (Moho) does not necessarily coincide with the base of the continental crust as defined by rock-type compositions was introduced in the early 1980s. This had an important impact on understanding the nature of the crust-mantle boundary using information from seismology and from deep-seated samples brought to the surface as xenoliths in magmas, or as tectonic terranes. The use of empirically-constrained P-T estimates to plot the locus of temperature vs depth for xenoliths defined a variety of geotherms depending on tectonic environment. The xenolith geotherms provided a framework for constructing lithological sections through the deep lithosphere, and revealed that the crust-mantle boundary in off-craton regions commonly is transitional over a depth range of about 5-20 km. Early seismic-reflection data showed common layering near the Moho, correlating with the petrological observation of multiple episodes of basaltic intrusion around the crust-mantle boundary. Developments in seismology, petrophysics and experimental petrology have refined interpretation of lithospheric domains. The expansion of in situ geochronology (especially zircon U-Pb ages and Hf-isotopes; Os isotopes of mantle sulfides) has defined tectonic events that affected whole crust-mantle sections, and revealed that the crust-mantle boundary can change in depth through time. However, the nature of the crust-mantle boundary in cratonic regions remains enigmatic, mainly due to lack of key xenoliths or exposed sections. The observation that the Moho may lie significantly deeper than the crust-mantle boundary has important implications for modeling the volume of the crust. Mapping the crust using seismic techniques alone, without consideration of the petrological problems, may lead to an overestimation of crustal thickness by 15-30%. This will propagate to large uncertainties in the calculation of elemental mass balances relevant to crust-formation processes

  11. Compositional variation and genesis of ferromanganese crusts of the Afanasiy-Nikitin Seamount, Equatorial Indian Ocean

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Rajani, R.P.; Banakar, V.K.; Parthiban, G.; Mudholkar, A.V.; Chodankar, A.R.

    Eight ferromanganese crusts (Fe-Mn crusts) with igneous and sedimentary substrates collected at different water depths from the Afanasiy-Nikitin Seamount are studied for their bulk major, minor and rare earth element composition. The Mn/Fe ratios...

  12. Analysis of natural convection heat transfer with crust formation in the molten metal pool using CONV-2 and 3D computer codes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Park, R. J.; Kang, K. H.; Kim, S. B.; Kim, H. D.; Choi, S. M.

    1998-01-01

    Analytical studies have been performed on natural convection heat transfer with crust formation in a molten metal pool to validate and evaluate experimental data using the CONV-2 and 3D computer codes. Two types of steady state tests, a low and high geometric aspect ratio case in the molten metal pool, were performed to investigate crust thickness as a function of boundary conditions. The CONV-2 and 3D computer codes were developed under the OECD/NEA RASPLAV project to simulate two- and three-dimensional natural convection heat transfer with crust formation, respectively. The Rayleigh-Benard flow patterns in the molten metal pool contribute to the temperature distribution, which affects non-uniform crust formation. The CONV-2D results on crust thickness are a little higher than the experimental data because of heat loss during the test. In comparison of the CONV-3D results with the CONV-2D results on crust thickness, the three-dimensional results are higher than the two-dimensional results, because of three dimensional natural convection flow and wall effect

  13. Global validation of two-channel AVHRR aerosol optical thickness retrievals over the oceans

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liu Li; Mishchenko, Michael I.; Geogdzhayev, Igor; Smirnov, Alexander; Sakerin, Sergey M.; Kabanov, Dmitry M.; Ershov, Oleg A.

    2004-01-01

    The paper presents validation results for the aerosol optical thickness derived by applying a two-channel retrieval algorithm to Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) radiance data. The satellite retrievals are compared with ship-borne sun-photometer results. The comparison of spatial and temporal statistics of the AVHRR results and the ship measurements shows a strong correlation. The satellite retrieval results obtained with the original algorithm for a wavelength of 0.55μm are systematically higher than the sun-photometer measurements in the cases of low aerosol loads. The ensemble averaged satellite-retrieved optical thickness overestimates the ensemble averaged sun-photometer data by about 11% with a random error of about 0.04. Increasing the diffuse component of the ocean surface reflectance from 0.002 to 0.004 in the AVHRR algorithm produces a better match, with the ensemble-averaged AVHRR-retrieved optical thickness differing by only about 3.6% from the sun-photometer truth and having a small offset of 0.03

  14. Crust and upper-mantle structure of Wanganui Basin and southern Hikurangi margin, North Island, New Zealand as revealed by active source seismic data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tozer, B.; Stern, T. A.; Lamb, S. L.; Henrys, S. A.

    2017-11-01

    Wide-angle reflection and refraction data recorded during the Seismic Array HiKurangi Experiment (SAHKE) are used to constrain the crustal P-wave velocity (Vp) structure along two profiles spanning the length and width of Wanganui Basin, located landwards of the southern Hikurangi subduction margin, New Zealand. These models provide high-resolution constraints on the structure and crustal thickness of the overlying Australian and subducted Pacific plates and plate interface geometry. Wide-angle reflections are modelled to show that the subducted oceanic Pacific plate crust is anomalously thick (∼10 km) below southern North Island and is overlain by a ∼1.5-4.0 km thick, low Vp (4.8-5.4 km s-1) layer, interpreted as a channel of sedimentary material, that persists landwards at least as far as Kapiti Island. Distinct near vertical reflections from onshore shots identify a ∼4 km high mound of low-velocity sedimentary material that appears to underplate the overlying Australian plate crust and is likely to contribute to local rock uplift along the Axial ranges. The overriding Australian plate Moho beneath Wanganui Basin is imaged as deepening southwards and reaches a depth of at least 36.4 km. The Moho shape approximately mirrors the thickening of the basin sediments, suggestive of crustal downwarping. However, the observed crustal thickness variation is insufficient to explain the large negative Bouguer gravity anomaly (-160 mGal) centred over the basin. Partial serpentinization within the upper mantle with a concomitant density decrease is one possible way of reconciling this anomaly.

  15. New Crustal Thickness for Djibouti, Afar, Using Seismic Techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dugda, Mulugeta; Bililign, Solomon

    2008-10-01

    Crustal thickness and Poisson's ratio for the seismic station ATD in Djibouti, Afar, has been investigated using two seismic techniques (H-κ stacking of receiver functions and a joint inversion of receiver functions and surface wave group velocities). Both techniques give consistent results of crustal thickness 23±1.5 km and Poisson's ratio 0.31±0.02. We also determined a mean P-wave velocity (Vp) of ˜6.2 km/s but ˜6.9-7.0 km/s below a 2 - 5 km thick low velocity layer at the surface. Previous studies of crustal structure for Djibouti reported that the crust is 6 to 11 km thick while our study shows that the crust beneath Djibouti is between 20 and 25 km. This study argues that the crustal thickness values reported for Djibouti for the last 3 decades were not consistent with the reports for the other neighboring region in central and eastern Afar. Our results for ATD in Djibouti, however, are consistent with the reports of crustal thickness in many other parts of central and eastern Afar. We attribute this difference to how the Moho (the crust-mantle discontinuity) is defined (an increase of Vp to 7.4 km/s in this study vs. 6.9 km/s in previous studies).

  16. 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

  17. Precambrian U-Pb zircon ages in eclogites and garnet pyroxenites from South Brittany (France): an old oceanic crust in the West European Hercynian belt?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peucat, J. J.; Vidal, Ph.; Godard, G.; Postaire, B.

    1982-08-01

    U-Pb zircon ages have been determined for two eclogites from the Vendée and for two garnet pyroxenites from the Baie d'Audierne. In an episodic Pb loss model, the two discordia would give upper intercept ages around 1300-1250 Ma and lower intercepts ages of 436-384 Ma. Two interpretations are proposed: (1) The 1250-1300 Ma ages may reflect an unspecified upper mantle event or process; the Paleozoic ages correspond to the tectonic emplacement of an eclogitic mantle fragment into the continental crust. (2) The protolith may have been extracted from the upper mantle 1250-1300 Ma ago and stored in a crustal environment until it was metamorphosed under high-pressure conditions around 400 Ma ago. This latter model is favoured by available geologic and isotopic data. Consequently, we propose that a 1300 Ma old oceanic crust was tectonicly incorporated into a sialic basement during the Proterozoic. This mixture was subsequently subducted during the Paleozoic.

  18. The Mafic Lower Crust of Neoproterozoic age beneath Western Arabia: Implications for Understanding African Lower Crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, R. J.; Mooney, W. D.

    2011-12-01

    We review evidence that the lower crust of Arabia - and by implication, that beneath much of Africa was formed at the same time as the upper crust, rather than being a product of Cenozoic magmatic underplating. Arabia is a recent orphan of Africa, separated by opening of the Red Sea ~20 Ma, so our understanding of its lower crust provides insights into that of Africa. Arabian Shield (exposed in W. Arabia) is mostly Neoproterozoic (880-540 Ma) reflecting a 300-million year process of continental crustal growth due to amalgamated juvenile magmatic arcs welded together by granitoid intrusions that make up as much as 50% of the Shield's surface. Seismic refraction studies of SW Arabia (Mooney et al., 1985) reveal two layers, each ~20 km thick, separated by a well-defined Conrad discontinuity. The upper crust has average Vp ~6.3 km/sec whereas the lower crust has average Vp ~7.0 km/sec, corresponding to a granitic upper crust and gabbroic lower crust. Neogene (<30 ma) lava fields in Arabia (harrats) extend over 2500 km, from Yemen to Syria. Many of these lavas contain xenoliths, providing a remarkable glimpse of the lower-crustal and upper-mantle lithosphere beneath W. Arabia. Lower crustal xenoliths brought up in 8 harrats in Saudi Arabia, Jordan, and Syria are mostly 2-pyroxene granulites of igneous (gabbroic, anorthositic, and dioritic) origin. They contain plagioclase, orthopyroxene, and clinopyroxene, and a few contain garnet and rare amphibole and yield mineral-equilibrium temperatures of 700-900°C. Pyroxene-rich and plagioclase-rich suites have mean Al2O3 contents of 13% and 19%, respectively: otherwise the two groups have similar elemental compositions, with ~50% SiO2 and ~1% TiO2, with low K2O (<0.5%) and Na2O (1-3%). Both groups show tholeiitic affinities, unrelated to their alkali basalt hosts. Mean pyroxene-rich and plagioclase-rich suites show distinct mean MgO contents (11% vs. 7%), Mg# (67 vs. 55), and contents of compatible elements Ni (169 vs. 66 ppm

  19. The crustal thickness of Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clitheroe, G.; Gudmundsson, O.; Kennett, B.L.N.

    2000-01-01

    We investigate the crustal structure of the Australian continent using the temporary broadband stations of the Skippy and Kimba projects and permanent broadband stations. We isolate near-receiver information, in the form of crustal P-to-S conversions, using the receiver function technique. Stacked receiver functions are inverted for S velocity structure using a Genetic Algorithm approach to Receiver Function Inversion (GARFI). From the resulting velocity models we are able to determine the Moho depth and to classify the width of the crust-mantle transition for 65 broadband stations. Using these results and 51 independent estimates of crustal thickness from refraction and reflection profiles, we present a new, improved, map of Moho depth for the Australian continent. The thinnest crust (25 km) occurs in the Archean Yilgarn Craton in Western Australia; the thickest crust (61 km) occurs in Proterozoic central Australia. The average crustal thickness is 38.8 km (standard deviation 6.2 km). Interpolation error estimates are made using kriging and fall into the range 2.5-7.0 km. We find generally good agreement between the depth to the seismologically defined Moho and xenolith-derived estimates of crustal thickness beneath northeastern Australia. However, beneath the Lachlan Fold Belt the estimates are not in agreement, and it is possible that the two techniques are mapping differing parts of a broad Moho transition zone. The Archean cratons of Western Australia appear to have remained largely stable since cratonization, reflected in only slight variation of Moho depth. The largely Proterozoic center of Australia shows relatively thicker crust overall as well as major Moho offsets. We see evidence of the margin of the contact between the Precambrian craton and the Tasman Orogen, referred to as the Tasman Line. Copyright 2000 by the American Geophysical Union.

  20. Age and isotope evidence for the evolution of continental crust

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Moorbath, S.

    1978-01-01

    Irreversible chemical differentiation of the mantle's essentially infinite reservoir for at least the past 3800 Ma has produced new continental, sialic crust during several relatively short (ca. 100-300 Ma) episodes which were widely separated in time and may have been of global extent. During each episode (termed 'accretion-differentiation superevent'), juvenile sial underwent profound igneous, metamorphic and geochemical differentiation, resulting in thick (ca. 25-40 km), stable, compositionally gradational, largely indestructible, continental crust exhibiting close grouping of isotopic ages of rock formation, as well as mantle-type initial Sr and Pb isotopic ratios for all major constituents. Isotopic evidence suggests that within most accretion-differentiation superevents - and especially during the earlier ones - continental growth predominated over reworking of older sialic crust. Reworking of older sialic crust can occur in several types of geological environment and appears to have become more prevalent with the passage of geological time. It is usually clearly distinguishable from continental growth, by application of appropriate age and isotope data. (author)

  1. Detailed seamount-scale studies of ferromanganese crusts reveal new insights into their formation and resource assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murton, B. J.; Lusty, P.; Yeo, I. A.; Howarth, S.

    2017-12-01

    The seafloor hosts abundant mineral deposits critical for low-carbon economies and emerging technologies. These include ferromanganese crusts (FeMnC) that grow on seamounts. While the broad distribution of FeMnC is known, local controls on growth, composition and formation are not. Here, we describe a detailed study of a gyot in the NE Atlantic (Tropic Seamount) that explores the controls, from the surface to the seafloor, exerted on FeMnC growth from current energy, surface productivity, sediment distribution, seafloor morphology, substrate lithology, sediments mobility and thickness, and seamount subsidence. During cruise JC142 (2016), we mapped the seamount with EM120 multibeam, mapped the 400km2 summit with AUV multibeam, sidescan sonar, sub-bottom profiler and 361,644 photographs. During 28 ROV dives we drilled 58 core and collected 344 individual rock samples. We found FeMnC at all depths, with the thickest (nucleolus for crusts up to 10cm thick, with growth into the sediment. Many substrates are found to comprise semi-consolidated sediment. The presence of thick crusts at the base of the seamount contradicts accepted understanding of FeMnC deposition just below the oxygen minimum zone (OMZ). In areas on the eastern and western spurs, between 2500m and 1000m, where current energy is greatest, sessile fauna are most abundant. Dense coral debris at these locations appears to inhibit crust formation and coral and sponge `gardens' are frequent on near vertical cliffs. The observation that crusts have grown downwards into and over soft sediment is enigmatic since present understanding requires hard substrates to be exposed to seawater for crusts to grow, and any burial would inhibit such growth. Plume tracking shows reduction to background within 1000m. Our study challenges the view that ferromanganese crusts form at the base of the OMZ and grow upwards on solid substrates. Instead, we see an interplay between crust precipitation, the morphological evolution of

  2. Seismic velocity model of the crust and upper mantle along profile PANCAKE across the Carpathians between the Pannonian Basin and the East European Craton

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Starostenko, V.; Janik, T.; Kolomiyets, K.

    2013-01-01

    the Transcarpathian Depression and the Carpathian Foredeep; and the south-western part of the EEC, including the Trans European Suture Zone (TESZ). Seismic data support a robust model of the Vp velocity structure of the crust. In the PB, the 22-23km thick crust consists of a 2-5km thick sedimentary layer (Vp=2......Results are presented of a seismic wide-angle reflection/refraction survey along a profile between the Pannonian Basin (PB) and the East European Craton (EEC) called PANCAKE. The P- and S-wave velocity model derived can be divided into three sectors: the PB; the Carpathians, including.......4-3.7km/s), 17-20km thick upper crystalline crust (5.9-6.3km/s) and an up to 3km thick lower crustal layer (Vp=6.4km/s). In the central part of the Carpathians, a 10-24km thick uppermost part of the crust with Vp≤6.0km/s may correspond to sedimentary rocks of different ages; several high velocity bodies...

  3. Shear velocities in the oceanic crust at the East Pacific Rise 9° 18' N to 10° 30' N from compliance measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nooner, S. L.; Webb, S. C.; Crawford, W. C.

    2007-12-01

    Compliance was measured at 21 sites along the East Pacific Rise (EPR) from 9° 18' N to 10° 30' N during the MADCAP (Melt And Diking from Compliance And Pressure) experiment on the R/V Atlantis from February 13 to March 19, 2007. Measurements at 10° 30' N across the ridge segment 22 km north of the Clipperton transform fault show a stiff lower crust, which suggests that there is little crustal melt. This is consistent with previous descriptions of this segment as "magmatically starved" based on its morphology. Most of the compliance measurements were made on the EPR segment south of the Clipperton transform fault. At the northern end of this ridge segment, a compliance transect at 10° 2' N spans the ridge axis and continues to a seamount 16 km east. These measurements indicate that shear velocities are low beneath the ridge axis but increase rapidly off axis to the east, suggesting no magmatic connection between the ridge axis and the Watchstander seamount chain. Shear velocities beneath the nearest (and most recently active) seamount are similar to other off axis sites, suggesting that there is little or no crustal melt there. A 26 km long compliance transect across the ridge axis near 9° 20' N suggests that the region of low crustal shear velocities is constrained to within 3-4 km of the ridge axis. The compliance measurements preclude the existence of a melt body 18-20 km east of the ridge axis as had been inferred from an apparent mid-crustal reflector observed in a recent OBS experiment. The compliance over that site show low shear velocities only in the uppermost crust associated with a thick layer 2A. A final compliance transect stretches northward along the ridge axis and across the Clipperton ridge-transform intersection (RTI). Measurements made north of where the ridge crosses the inferred location of the RTI show lower crustal shear velocities than normal for off-axis crust, but this observation is consistent with previous refraction work that

  4. Uranium abundance of the oceanic crust

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fisher, D.E.

    1979-01-01

    Uranium contents of 67 oceanic basalts have been measured by fission track analysis. Average value for ridge and intraplate basalts is approximately 78 ppb, for the Easter Hot Line it is approximately 1600 ppb. Estimates of mantle concentrations derived from the ridge and intraplate samples are insufficient to account for the observed surface heat flow. The whole-Earth concentration of U is > 8 ppb, and < 33 ppb if all heat generated within the Earth reaches the surface. (author)

  5. 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

  6. Source to Sink Tectonic Fate of Large Oceanic Turbidite Systems and the Rupturing of Great and Giant Megathrust Earthquakes (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scholl, D. W.; Kirby, S. H.; von Huene, R.

    2010-12-01

    OCEAN FLOOR OBSERVATIONS: Oceanic turbidite systems accumulate above igneous oceanic crust and are commonly huge in areal and volumetric dimensions. For example, the volume of the Zodiac fan of the Gulf of Alaska is roughly 300,000 cubic km. Other large oceanic systems construct the Amazon cone, flood the Bay of Bengal abyss, and accumulate along trench axes to thickness of 1 to 7 km and lengths of 1000 to 3000 km, e.g., the Aleutian-Alaska, Sumatra-Andaman, Makran, and south central Chile Trenches. THE ROCK RECORD: Despite the large dimensions of oceanic turbidite systems, they are poorly preserved in the rock record. This includes oceanic systems deposited in passive-margin oceans, e.g., the Paleozoic Iapetus and Rheric oceans of the Atlantic realm, This circumstance does not apply to Cretaceous and E. Tertiary rock sequences of the north Pacific rim where oceanic turbidite deposits are preserved as accretionary complexes, e.g., the Catalina-Pelona-Orocopia-Rand schist of California and the Chugach-Kodiak complex of Alaska. These rock bodies are exhumed crustal underplates of once deeply (15-30 km) subducted oceanic turbidite systems. PATH FROM SOURCE TO TECTONIC SINK: The fate of most oceanic turbidite systems is to be removed from the sea floor and, ultimately, destroyed. This circumstance is unavoidable because most of them are deposited on lower plate crust destined for destruction in a subduction zone. During the past 4-5 myr alone a volume of 1-1.5 million cubic km of sediment sourced from the glaciated drainages of the Gulf of Alaska flooded the 3000-km-long Aleutian-Alaska trench axis. A small part of this volume accumulated tectonically as a narrow, 10-30-km wide accretionary frontal prism. But about 80 percent was subducted and entered the subduction channel separating the two plates. The subduction channel, roughly 1 km thick, conveys the trench turbidite deposits landward down dip along the rupturing width of the seismogenic zone. SEISMIC CONSEQUENCE

  7. Big Impacts and Transient Oceans on Titan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zahnle, K. J.; Korycansky, D. G.; Nixon, C. A.

    2014-01-01

    We have studied the thermal consequences of very big impacts on Titan [1]. Titan's thick atmosphere and volatile-rich surface cause it to respond to big impacts in a somewhat Earth-like manner. Here we construct a simple globally-averaged model that tracks the flow of energy through the environment in the weeks, years, and millenia after a big comet strikes Titan. The model Titan is endowed with 1.4 bars of N2 and 0.07 bars of CH4, methane lakes, a water ice crust, and enough methane underground to saturate the regolith to the surface. We assume that half of the impact energy is immediately available to the atmosphere and surface while the other half is buried at the site of the crater and is unavailable on time scales of interest. The atmosphere and surface are treated as isothermal. We make the simplifying assumptions that the crust is everywhere as methane saturated as it was at the Huygens landing site, that the concentration of methane in the regolith is the same as it is at the surface, and that the crust is made of water ice. Heat flow into and out of the crust is approximated by step-functions. If the impact is great enough, ice melts. The meltwater oceans cool to the atmosphere conductively through an ice lid while at the base melting their way into the interior, driven down in part through Rayleigh-Taylor instabilities between the dense water and the warm ice. Topography, CO2, and hydrocarbons other than methane are ignored. Methane and ethane clathrate hydrates are discussed quantitatively but not fully incorporated into the model.

  8. Moho depth variations over the Maldive Ridge and adjoining Arabian and Central Indian Basins, Western Indian Ocean, from three dimensional inversion of gravity anomalies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kunnummal, Priyesh; Anand, S. P.; Haritha, C.; Rama Rao, P.

    2018-05-01

    Analysis of high resolution satellite derived free air gravity data has been undertaken in the Greater Maldive Ridge (GMR) (Maldive Ridge, Deep Sea Channel, northern limit of Chagos Bank) segment of the Chagos Laccadive Ridge and the adjoining Arabian and Central Indian Basins. A Complete Bouguer Anomaly (CBA) map was generated from the Indian Ocean Geoidal Low removed Free Air Gravity (hereinafter referred to as "FAG-IOGL") data by incorporating Bullard A, B and C corrections. Using the Parker method, Moho topography was initially computed by inverting the CBA data. From the CBA the Mantle Residual Gravity Anomalies (MRGA) were computed by incorporating gravity effects of sediments and lithospheric temperature and pressure induced anomalies. Further, the MRGA was inverted to get Moho undulations from which the crustal thickness was also estimated. It was found that incorporating the lithospheric thermal and pressure anomaly correction has provided substantial improvement in the computed Moho depths especially in the oceanic areas. But along the GMR, there was not much variation in the Moho thickness computed with and without the thermal and pressure gravity correction implying that the crustal thickness of the ridge does not depend on the oceanic isochrones used for the thermal corrections. The estimated Moho depths in the study area ranges from 7 km to 28 km and the crustal thickness from 2 km to 27 km. The Moho depths are shallower in regions closer to Central Indian Ridge in the Arabian Basin i.e., the region to the west of the GMR is thinner compared to the region in the east (Central Indian Basin). The thickest crust and the deepest Moho are found below the N-S trending GMR segment of the Chagos-Laccadive Ridge. Along the GMR the crustal thickness decreases from north to south with thickness of 27 km below the Maldives Ridge reducing to ∼9 km at 3°S and further increasing towards Chagos Bank. Even though there are similarities in crustal thickness between

  9. Structure of the Crust beneath Cameroon, West Africa, from the Joint Inversion of Rayleigh Wave Group Velocities and Receiver Functions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tokam, A K; Tabod, C T; Nyblade, A A; Julia, J; Wiens, D A; Pasyanos, M E

    2010-02-18

    The Cameroon Volcanic Line (CVL) is a major geologic feature that cuts across Cameroon from the south west to the north east. It is a unique volcanic lineament which has both an oceanic and a continental sector and consists of a chain of Tertiary to Recent, generally alkaline volcanoes stretching from the Atlantic island of Pagalu to the interior of the African continent. The oceanic sector includes the islands of Bioko (formerly Fernando Po) and Sao Tome and Principe while the continental sector includes the Etinde, Cameroon, Manengouba, Bamboutos, Oku and Mandara mountains, as well as the Adamawa and Biu Plateaus. In addition to the CVL, three other major tectonic features characterize the region: the Benue Trough located northwest of the CVL, the Central African Shear Zone (CASZ), trending N70 degrees E, roughly parallel to the CVL, and the Congo Craton in southern Cameroon. The origin of the CVL is still the subject of considerable debate, with both plume and non-plume models invoked by many authors (e.g., Deruelle et al., 2007; Ngako et al, 2006; Ritsema and Allen, 2003; Burke, 2001; Ebinger and Sleep, 1998; Lee et al, 1994; Dorbath et al., 1986; Fairhead and Binks, 1991; King and Ritsema, 2000; Reusch et al., 2010). Crustal structure beneath Cameroon has been investigated previously using active (Stuart et al, 1985) and passive (Dorbath et al., 1986; Tabod, 1991; Tabod et al, 1992; Plomerova et al, 1993) source seismic data, revealing a crust about 33 km thick at the south-western end of the continental portion of the CVL (Tabod, 1991) and the Adamawa Plateau, and thinner crust (23 km thick) beneath the Garoua Rift in the north (Stuart et al, 1985) (Figure 1). Estimates of crustal thickness obtained using gravity data show similar variations between the Garoua rift, Adamawa Plateau, and southern part of the CVL (Poudjom et al., 1995; Nnange et al., 2000). In this study, we investigate further crustal structure beneath the CVL and the adjacent regions in

  10. Thick-shelled, grazer-protected diatoms decouple ocean carbon and silicon cycles in the iron-limited Antarctic Circumpolar Current

    Science.gov (United States)

    Assmy, Philipp; Smetacek, Victor; Montresor, Marina; Klaas, Christine; Henjes, Joachim; Strass, Volker H.; Arrieta, Jesús M.; Bathmann, Ulrich; Berg, Gry M.; Breitbarth, Eike; Cisewski, Boris; Friedrichs, Lars; Fuchs, Nike; Herndl, Gerhard J.; Jansen, Sandra; Krägefsky, Sören; Latasa, Mikel; Peeken, Ilka; Röttgers, Rüdiger; Scharek, Renate; Schüller, Susanne E.; Steigenberger, Sebastian; Webb, Adrian; Wolf-Gladrow, Dieter

    2013-01-01

    Diatoms of the iron-replete continental margins and North Atlantic are key exporters of organic carbon. In contrast, diatoms of the iron-limited Antarctic Circumpolar Current sequester silicon, but comparatively little carbon, in the underlying deep ocean and sediments. Because the Southern Ocean is the major hub of oceanic nutrient distribution, selective silicon sequestration there limits diatom blooms elsewhere and consequently the biotic carbon sequestration potential of the entire ocean. We investigated this paradox in an in situ iron fertilization experiment by comparing accumulation and sinking of diatom populations inside and outside the iron-fertilized patch over 5 wk. A bloom comprising various thin- and thick-shelled diatom species developed inside the patch despite the presence of large grazer populations. After the third week, most of the thinner-shelled diatom species underwent mass mortality, formed large, mucous aggregates, and sank out en masse (carbon sinkers). In contrast, thicker-shelled species, in particular Fragilariopsis kerguelensis, persisted in the surface layers, sank mainly empty shells continuously, and reduced silicate concentrations to similar levels both inside and outside the patch (silica sinkers). These patterns imply that thick-shelled, hence grazer-protected, diatom species evolved in response to heavy copepod grazing pressure in the presence of an abundant silicate supply. The ecology of these silica-sinking species decouples silicon and carbon cycles in the iron-limited Southern Ocean, whereas carbon-sinking species, when stimulated by iron fertilization, export more carbon per silicon. Our results suggest that large-scale iron fertilization of the silicate-rich Southern Ocean will not change silicon sequestration but will add carbon to the sinking silica flux. PMID:24248337

  11. The End of Monterey Submarine Canyon Incision and Potential River Source Areas-Os, Nd, and Pb Isotope Constraints from Hydrogenetic Fe-Mn Crusts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conrad, T. A.; Nielsen, S.; Ehrenbrink, B. P. E.; Blusztajn, J.; Hein, J. R.; Paytan, A.

    2015-12-01

    The Monterey Canyon off central California is the largest submarine canyon off North America and is comparable in scale to the Grand Canyon. The age and history of the Monterey Canyon are poorly constrained due to thick sediment cover and sediment disruption from turbidity currents. To address this deficit we analyzed isotopic proxies (Os, Pb, Nd) from hydrogenetic ferromanganese (Fe-Mn) crusts, which grow over millions of years on elevated rock surfaces by precipitation of metals from seawater. Fe-Mn crusts were studied from Davidson Seamount near the base of the Monterey submarine fan, the Taney Seamount Chain, and from Hoss Seamount, which serves as a regional control (Fig.). Fe-Mn crusts were dated using Os isotope ratios compared to those that define the Cenozoic Os isotope seawater curve. Four Fe-Mn crust samples from Davidson and Taney Seamounts deviate from the Os isotopic seawater curve towards radiogenic values after 4.5±1 Ma. Osmium is well mixed in the global ocean and is not subject to significant diffusive reequilibration in Fe-Mn crusts. We therefore attribute deviations from the Os isotope seawater curve to large-scale terrestrial input that ended about 4.5±1 Ma. The two Davidson samples also show more radiogenic Nd isotope values from about 4.5±1 Ma. Lead isotopes in one Davidson Seamount crust, measured by LA-ICPMS, deviate from regional values after 4.5±1 Ma for about 500 ka towards terrestrial sources. The Taney Seamount Fe-Mn crust does not deviate from regional Nd nor Pb isotope values due to its greater distance from Monterey Canyon and the shorter marine residence times of Nd and Pb. Isotope plots of our crust data and compiled data for potential source rocks indicate that the river that carved Monterey Canyon carried sediment with values closer to the Sierra Nevada than to a Colorado Plateau source, with cessation of major riverine input occurring approximately 4.5±1 Ma, an age that we interpret as the end of the Monterey Canyon

  12. Detailed seismic velocity structure of the ultra-slow spread crust at the Mid-Cayman Spreading Center from travel-time tomography and synthetic seismograms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harding, J.; Van Avendonk, H. J.; Hayman, N. W.; Grevemeyer, I.; Peirce, C.

    2017-12-01

    The Mid-Cayman Spreading Center (MCSC), an ultraslow-spreading center in the Caribbean Sea, has formed highly variable oceanic crust. Seafloor dredges have recovered extrusive basalts in the axial deeps as well as gabbro on bathymetric highs and exhumed mantle peridotite along the only 110 km MCSC. Wide-angle refraction data were collected with active-source ocean bottom seismometers in April, 2015, along lines parallel and across the MCSC. Travel-time tomography produces relatively smooth 2-D tomographic models of compressional wave velocity. These velocity models reveal large along- and across-axis variations in seismic velocity, indicating possible changes in crustal thickness, composition, faulting, and magmatism. It is difficult, however, to differentiate between competing interpretations of seismic velocity using these tomographic models alone. For example, in some areas the seismic velocities may be explained by either thin igneous crust or exhumed, serpentinized mantle. Distinguishing between these two interpretations is important as we explore the relationships between magmatism, faulting, and hydrothermal venting at ultraslow-spreading centers. We therefore improved our constraints on the shallow seismic velocity structure of the MCSC by modeling the amplitude of seismic refractions in the wide-angle data set. Synthetic seismograms were calculated with a finite-difference method for a range of models with different vertical velocity gradients. Small-scale features in the velocity models, such as steep velocity gradients and Moho boundaries, were explored systematically to best fit the real data. With this approach, we have improved our understanding of the compressional velocity structure of the MCSC along with the geological interpretations that are consistent with three seismic refraction profiles. Line P01 shows a variation in the thinness of lower seismic velocities along the axis, indicating two segment centers, while across-axis lines P02 and P03

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guan, Huixin; Werner, Philippe; Geoffroy, Laurent

    2016-04-01

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

  14. Crystallization Age and Impact Resetting of Ancient Lunar Crust from the Descartes Terrane

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norman, M. D.; Borg, L. E.; Nyquist, L. E.; Bogard, D. D.

    2002-01-01

    Lunar ferroan anorthosites (FANs) are relics of an ancient, primary feldspathic crust that is widely believed to have crystallized from a global magma ocean. Compositions and ages of FANs provide fundamental information about the origin and magmatic evolution of the Moon, while the petrology and thermal history of lunar FANs illustrate the structure and impact history of the lunar crust. Here we report petrologic, geochemical, and isotopic (Nd-Sr-Ar) studies of a ferroan noritic anorthosite clast from lunar breccia 67215 to improve our understanding of the composition, age, and thermal history of the Moon.

  15. The Origin of Silicic Arc Crust - Insights from the Northern Pacific Volcanic Arcs through Space and Time

    Science.gov (United States)

    Straub, S. M.; Kelemen, P. B.

    2016-12-01

    The remarkable compositional similarities of andesitic crust at modern convergent margins and the continental crust has long evoked the hypothesis of similar origins. Key to understanding either genesis is understanding the mode of silica enrichment. Silicic crust cannot be directly extracted from the upper mantle. Hence, in modern arcs, numerous studies - observant of the pervasive and irrefutable evidence of melt mixing - proposed that arc andesites formed by mixing of mantle-derived basaltic melts and fusible silicic material from the overlying crust. Mass balance requires the amount of silicic crust in such hybrid andesites to be on the order to tens of percent, implying that their composition to be perceptibly influenced by the various crustal basements. In order to test this hypothesis, major and trace element compositions of mafic and silicic arc magmas with arc-typical low Ce/PbMexico) were combined with Pb isotope ratios. Pb isotope ratios are considered highly sensitive to crustal contamination, and hence should reflect the variable composition of the oceanic and continental basement on which these arcs are constructed. In particular, in thick-crust continental arcs where the basement is isotopically different from the mantle and crustal assimilation thought to be most prevalent, silicic magmas must be expected to be distinct from those of the associated mafic melts. However, in a given arc, the Pb isotope ratios are constant with increasing melt silica regardless of the nature of the basement. This observation argues against a melt origin of silicic melts from the crustal basement and suggest them to be controlled by the same slab flux as their co-eval mafic counterparts. This inference is validated by the spatial and temporal pattern of arc Pb isotope ratios along the Northern Pacific margins and throughout the 50 million years of Cenozoic evolution of the Izu Bonin Mariana arc/trench system that are can be related to with systematic, `real

  16. Uranium-series growth history of a Quaternary phosphatic crust from the Peruvian continental margin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Kee Hyun; Burnett, W.C.

    1986-01-01

    A 20-mm-thick oriented phosphatic crust recovered together with its overlying (14 cm) and underlying (4 cm) associated sediment from the Peruvian sea floor has been analyzed in detail for uranium-series radionuclides in an attempt to determine its rate and direction of growth. Growth curves based upon 226 Ra and 230 Th ages show that this crust grew upward toward the sediment-water interface. Calculated growth rates in the range of 12-13 mm ka -1 are slightly higher but comparable to values previously reported. Crystallographical analyses of this phosphatic crust show a trend of decreasing unit-cell dimension a with sample age. The upward growth of a buried crust toward the sediment-water interface is consistent with results from recent pore-water studies of fluoride and phosphate in Peru shelf sediments. (orig.)

  17. 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.

  18. EUNAseis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Artemieva, Irina; Thybo, Hans

    2013-01-01

    ; (4) The thickness ratio between upper-middle (Vp b 6.8 km/s) and lower (Vp N 6.8 km/s) crystalline crust is indicative of crustal origin: oceanic, transitional, platform, or extended crust; (5) Continental rifting generally thins the upper-middle crust significantly without changing Vp. Lower crust...... experiences less thinning, also without changing Vp, suggesting a complex interplay of magmatic underplating, gabbro-eclogite phase transition and delamination; (6) Crustal structure of the Barents Sea shelf differs from rifted continental crust; and (7) Most of the North Atlantic Ocean north of 55°N has...

  19. Airborne dust transport to the eastern Pacific Ocean off southern California: Evidence from San Clemente Island

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muhs, D.R.; Budahn, J.; Reheis, M.; Beann, J.; Skipp, G.; Fisher, E.

    2007-01-01

    Islands are natural dust traps, and San Clemente Island, California, is a good example. Soils on marine terraces cut into Miocene andesite on this island are clay-rich Vertisols or Alfisols with vertic properties. These soils are overlain by silt-rich mantles, 5-20 cm thick, that contrast sharply with the underlying clay-rich subsoils. The silt mantles have a mineralogy that is distinct from the island bedrock. Silt mantles are rich in quartz, which is rare in the island andesite. The clay fraction of the silt mantles is dominated by mica, also absent from local andesite, and contrasts with the subsoils, dominated by smectite. Ternary plots of immobile trace elements (Sc-Th-La and Ta-Nd-Cr) show that the island andesite has a composition intermediate between average upper continental crust and average oceanic crust. In contrast, the silt and, to a lesser extent, clay fractions of the silt mantles have compositions closer to average upper continental crust. The silt mantles have particle size distributions similar to loess and Mojave Desert dust, but are coarser than long-range-transported Asian dust. We infer from these observations that the silt mantles are derived from airborne dust from the North American mainland, probably river valleys in the coastal mountains of southern California and/or the Mojave Desert. Although average winds are from the northwest in coastal California, easterly winds occur numerous times of the year when "Santa Ana" conditions prevail, caused by a high-pressure cell centered over the Great Basin. Examination of satellite imagery shows that easterly Santa Ana winds carry abundant dust to the eastern Pacific Ocean and the California Channel Islands. Airborne dust from mainland North America may be an important component of the offshore sediment budget in the easternmost Pacific Ocean, a finding of potential biogeochemical and climatic significance.

  20. Estimating the formation age distribution of continental crust by unmixing zircon ages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korenaga, Jun

    2018-01-01

    Continental crust provides first-order control on Earth's surface environment, enabling the presence of stable dry landmasses surrounded by deep oceans. The evolution of continental crust is important for atmospheric evolution, because continental crust is an essential component of deep carbon cycle and is likely to have played a critical role in the oxygenation of the atmosphere. Geochemical information stored in the mineral zircon, known for its resilience to diagenesis and metamorphism, has been central to ongoing debates on the genesis and evolution of continental crust. However, correction for crustal reworking, which is the most critical step when estimating original formation ages, has been incorrectly formulated, undermining the significance of previous estimates. Here I suggest a simple yet promising approach for reworking correction using the global compilation of zircon data. The present-day distribution of crustal formation age estimated by the new "unmixing" method serves as the lower bound to the true crustal growth, and large deviations from growth models based on mantle depletion imply the important role of crustal recycling through the Earth history.

  1. Determination of the crust thickness in the active margin of the Antarctic region; Determinacao da estrutura crustal na margem ativa da regiao antartica

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Torres, Luiz Carlos; Gamboa, Luiz Antonio Pierantoni [Universidade Federal Fluminense, Niteroi, RJ (Brazil). Lagemar; Gomes, Benedito Souza [PETROBRAS, Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil)

    1997-07-01

    Seismic multichannel, gravity and magnetometry measurements were carried out in the region of West coast of the Antarctic Peninsula, Bransfield Strait, South Shetland Islands and South Shetland Trench, by Brazilian Antarctic Program during the summers of 1987 and 1988. The present work, using a continue seismic and gravity and gravity data profile crossing the area, intends to present a two-dimensional model of the crust thickness in this region. By this model, the Moho discontinuity would lie at a depth of 14.5 km below the axis of the Bransfield trough. This anomalous behaviour in addition to compressional processes identified in the accretionary prism and trench, was interpreted as an evidence of the continued opening of the Bransfield basin. (author)

  2. Internal time marker (Q1) of the Cretaceous super chron in the Bay of Bengal - a new age constraint for the oceanic crust evolved between India and Elan Bank

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krishna, K. S.; Ismaiel, M.; Karlapati, S.; Saha, D.; Mishra, J.

    2014-12-01

    Analysis of marine magnetic data of the Bay of Bengal (BOB) led to suggest two different tectonic models for the evolution of lithosphere between India and East Antarctica. The first model explains the presence of M-series (M11 to M0) magnetic anomalies in BOB with a small room leaving for accommodating the crust evolved during the long Cretaceous Magnetic Quiet Period. Second model explains in other way that most part of the crust in BOB was evolved during the quite period together with the possible presence of oldest magnetic chron M1/ M0 in close vicinity of ECMI. It is with this perspective we have reinvestigated the existing and recently acquired magnetic data together with regional magnetic model of BOB for identification of new tectonic constraints, thereby to better understand the evolution of lithosphere. Analysis of magnetic data revealed the presence of spreading anomalies C33 and C34 in the vicinity of 8°N, and internal time marker (Q1) corresponding to the age 92 Ma at 12°N in a corridor between 85°E and Ninetyeast ridges. The new time marker and its location, indeed, become a point of reference and benchmark in BOB for estimating the age of oceanic crust towards ECMI. The magnetic model further reveals the presence of network of fracture zones (FZs) with different orientations. Between 85°E and Ninetyeast ridges, two near N-S FZs, approximately followed 87°E and 89.5°E are found to extend into BOB up to 12°N, from there the FZs reorient in N60°W direction and reach to the continental margin region. Along ECMI two sets of FZs are identified with a northern set oriented in N60°W and southern one in N40°W direction. This suggests that both north and south segments of the ECMI were evolved in two different tectonic settings. The bend in FZs marks the timing (92 Ma) of occurrence of first major plate reorganisation of the Indian Ocean and becomes a very critical constraint for understanding the plate tectonic process in early opening of the

  3. Analysis of crustal thickness and off-axis low-velocity zones at the Endeavour segment of the Juan de Fuca Ridge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wells, A. E.; Hooft, E. E.; Toomey, D. R.; Wilcock, W. S.; Weekly, R. T.

    2010-12-01

    Construction of the oceanic crust is often thought to occur by delivery of melt from the mantle to the ridge axis that is both segment-centered and rise-centered. However, recent seismic studies at the fast-spreading East Pacific Rise show that mantle melt delivery can be skewed relative to the rise leading to off-axis delivery of melt. Furthermore foci of mantle melt delivery occur on a length-scale shorter than that of a ridge segment and the region of greater melt supply, as measured by crustal thickness, does not correspond to the segment center. We use seismic data from the intermediate-spreading Endeavour segment of the Juan de Fuca Ridge to investigate the spatial and temporal pattern of melt supply in this setting and whether off-axis delivery and transport of melt is a common occurrence. The Juan de Fuca Ridge has a transitional morphology characterized by fault-bounded ridges that parallel the spreading center. Previous models of the Endeavour segment inferred that the off-axis ridges are constructed during periods of enhanced magmatism and that these are separated by the remains of rift valleys generated during periods of reduced magmatism. This model may imply that crustal thickness should vary rapidly, with thicker crust beneath the off-axis ridges and thinner crust in between. Alternatively, on the basis of recent seismic reflection images of crustal magma bodies along the Juan de Fuca ridge this topography is thought to reflect magma-induced deformation resulting from feedbacks between the rheology of the crust above the magma sill and dike intrusion. In this case, short wavelength crustal thickness variations may not be present. The melting anomalies associated with various nearby seamount chains also influence processes along the Juan de Fuca Ridge. The seismic reflection work indicates that there is a ~40-km-wide plateau of greater crustal thickness (~0.5-1.0 km) at the center of the Endeavour segment that began forming about 0.7 Ma. The plateau

  4. Crustal thickness of Antarctica estimated using data from gravimetric satellites

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Llubes

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Computing a better crustal thickness model is still a necessary improvement in Antarctica. In this remote continent where almost all the bedrock is covered by the ice sheet, seismic investigations do not reach a sufficient spatial resolution for geological and geophysical purposes. Here, we present a global map of Antarctic crustal thickness computed from space gravity observations. The DIR5 gravity field model, built from GOCE and GRACE gravimetric data, is inverted with the Parker–Oldenburg iterative algorithm. The BEDMAP products are used to estimate the gravity effect of the ice and the rocky surface. Our result is compared to crustal thickness calculated from seismological studies and the CRUST1.0 and AN1 models. Although the CRUST1.0 model shows a very good agreement with ours, its spatial resolution is larger than the one we obtain with gravimetric data. Finally, we compute a model in which the crust–mantle density contrast is adjusted to fit the Moho depth from the CRUST1.0 model. In East Antarctica, the resulting density contrast clearly shows higher values than in West Antarctica.

  5. 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

  6. Seismic Investigations of the Crust and Upper Mantle Structure in Antarctica and Madagascar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramirez, Cristo

    In the three studies that form this dissertation, seismic data from Antarctica and Madagascar have been analyzed to obtain new insights into crustal structure and mantle flow. Until recently, there have been little seismic data available from these areas for interrogating Earth structure and processes. In Antarctica, I analyzed datasets from temporary deployments of broadband seismic stations in both East and West Antarctica. In Madagascar, I analyzed data from a temporary network of broadband stations, along with data from three permanent stations. The seismic data have been processed and modeled using a wide range of techniques to characterize crust and mantle structure. Crustal structure in the East Antarctic Craton resembles Precambrian terrains around the world in its thickness and shear wave velocities. The West Antarctic Rift System has thinner crust, consistent with crustal thickness beneath other Cretaceous rifts. The Transantarctic Mountains show thickening of the crust from the costal regions towards the interior of the mountain range, and high velocities in the lower crust at several locations, possibly resulting from the Ferrar magmatic event. Ross Island and Marie Byrd Land Dome have elevated crustal Vp/Vs ratios, suggesting the presence of partial melt and/or volcaniclastic material within the crust. The pattern of seismic anisotropy in Madagascar is complex and cannot arise solely due to mantle flow from the African superplume, as previously proposed. To explain the complex pattern of anisotropy, a combination of mechanisms needs to be invoked, including mantle flow from the African superplume, mantle flow from the Comoros hotspot, small scale upwelling in the mantle induced by lithospheric delamination, and fossil anisotropy in the lithospheric mantle along Precambrian shear zones.

  7. Timing of Crystallisation of the Lunar Magma Ocean Constrained by the Oldest Zircon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nemchin, A.; Timms, N.; Pidgeon, R.; Geisler, T.; Reddy, S.; Meyer, C.

    2009-01-01

    The presently favoured concept for the early evolution of the Moon involves consolidation of debris from a giant impact of a Mars sized body with Earth forming a primitive Moon with a thick global layer of melt referred to as the Lunar Magma Ocean1 . It is widely accepted that many significant features observed on the Moon today are the result of crystallisation of this magma ocean. However, controversy exists over the precise timing and duration of the crystallisation process. Resolution of this problem depends on the establishment of precise and robust key crystallisation time points. We report a 4417 6 Myr old zircon in lunar breccia sample 72215,195, which provides a precisely determined younger limit for the solidification of the Lunar Magma Ocean. A model based on these data, together with the age of the Moon forming giant impact, defines an exponential time frame for crystallisation and suggests formation of anorthositic crust after about 80-85% of the magma ocean was solidified. In combination with other zircon ages the 4417 +/- 6 Myr age also suggests that the very small (less than a few per cent) residual portion of the magma ocean continued to solidify during the following 300-500 m.y.

  8. Starquakes, Heating Anomalies, and Nuclear Reactions in the Neutron Star Crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deibel, Alex Thomas

    When the most massive stars perish, their cores may remain intact in the form of extremely dense and compact stars. These stellar remnants, called neutron stars, are on the cusp of becoming black holes and reach mass densities greater than an atomic nucleus in their centers. Although the interiors of neutron stars were difficult to investigate at the time of their discovery, the advent of modern space-based telescopes (e.g., Chandra X-ray Observatory) has pushed our understanding of the neutron star interior into exciting new realms. It has been shown that the neutron star interior spans an enormous range of densities and contains many phases of matter, and further theoretical progress must rely on numerical calculations of neutron star phenomena built with detailed nuclear physics input. To further investigate the properties of the neutron star interior, this dissertation constructs numerical models of neutron stars, applies models to various observations of neutron star high-energy phenomena, and draws new conclusions about the neutron star interior from these analyses. In particular, we model the neutron star's outermost ? 1 km that encompasses the neutron star's envelope, ocean, and crust. The model must implement detailed nuclear physics to properly simulate the hydrostatic and thermal structure of the neutron star. We then apply our model to phenomena that occur in these layers, such as: thermonuclear bursts in the envelope, g-modes in the ocean, torsional oscillations of the crust, and crust cooling of neutron star transients. A comparison of models to observations provides new insights on the properties of dense matter that are often difficult to probe through terrestrial experiments. For example, models of the quiescent cooling of neutron stars, such as the accreting transient MAXI J0556-332, at late times into quiescence probe the thermal transport properties of the deep neutron star crust. This modeling provides independent data from astronomical

  9. Controls on ferromanganese crust composition and reconnaissance resource potential, Ninetyeast Ridge, Indian Ocean

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Hein, J.R.; Conrad, T.; Mizell, K.; Banakar, V.K.; Frey, F.A.; Sager, W.W.

    adsorbed on the Fe oxyhydroxide. The enrichment of Ni, Zn, and Cu in the phosphatized crust reflects preferential adsorption into the tunnel structure of todorokite. The rare earth element plus yttrium (REY) patterns indicate a lower oxidation potential...

  10. 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

  11. Partially molten magma ocean model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shirley, D.N.

    1983-01-01

    The properties of the lunar crust and upper mantle can be explained if the outer 300-400 km of the moon was initially only partially molten rather than fully molten. The top of the partially molten region contained about 20% melt and decreased to 0% at 300-400 km depth. Nuclei of anorthositic crust formed over localized bodies of magma segregated from the partial melt, then grew peripherally until they coverd the moon. Throughout most of its growth period the anorthosite crust floated on a layer of magma a few km thick. The thickness of this layer is regulated by the opposing forces of loss of material by fractional crystallization and addition of magma from the partial melt below. Concentrations of Sr, Eu, and Sm in pristine ferroan anorthosites are found to be consistent with this model, as are trends for the ferroan anorthosites and Mg-rich suites on a diagram of An in plagioclase vs. mg in mafics. Clustering of Eu, Sr, and mg values found among pristine ferroan anorthosites are predicted by this model

  12. 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

  13. Australasian microtektites in a substrate: A new constraint on ferromanganese crust accumulation rates

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    ShyamPrasad, M.

    composition. The ferromanganese crust has a thickness range of 6-17 mm, and its chemistry and mineralogy indicate hydrogenic accretion. Because the Australasian strewn field has an age of approximately 0.77 Ma, this finding implies that the overlying Fe...

  14. Earth's oldest stable crust in the Pilbara Craton formed by cyclic gravitational overturns

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiemer, Daniel; Schrank, Christoph E.; Murphy, David T.; Wenham, Lana; Allen, Charlotte M.

    2018-05-01

    During the early Archaean, the Earth was too hot to sustain rigid lithospheric plates subject to Wilson Cycle-style plate tectonics. Yet by that time, up to 50% of the present-day continental crust was generated. Preserved continental fragments from the early Archaean have distinct granite-dome/greenstone-keel crust that is interpreted to be the result of a gravitationally unstable stratification of felsic proto-crust overlain by denser mafic volcanic rocks, subject to reorganization by Rayleigh-Taylor flow. Here we provide age constraints on the duration of gravitational overturn in the East Pilbara Terrane. Our U-Pb ages indicate the emplacement of 3,600-3,460-million-year-old granitoid rocks, and their uplift during an overturn event ceasing about 3,413 million years ago. Exhumation and erosion of this felsic proto-crust accompanied crustal reorganization. Petrology and thermodynamic modelling suggest that the early felsic magmas were derived from the base of thick ( 43 km) basaltic proto-crust. Combining our data with regional geochronological studies unveils characteristic growth cycles on the order of 100 million years. We propose that maturation of the early crust over three of these cycles was required before a stable, differentiated continent emerged with sufficient rigidity for plate-like behaviour.

  15. Late Cretaceous and Cenozoic seafloor and oceanic basement roughness: Spreading rate, crustal age and sediment thickness correlations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bird, Robert T.; Pockalny, Robert A.

    1994-05-01

    Single-channel seismic data from the South Australian Basin and Argentine Basin, and bathymetry data from the flanks of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, East Pacific Rise and Southwest Indian Ridge are analysed to determine the root-mean-square (RMS) roughness of the seafloor and oceanic basement created at seafloor spreading rates ranging from 3 to 80 km/Ma (half-rate). For these data, crustal ages range from near zero to 85 Ma and sediment thicknesses range from near zero to over 2 km. Our results are consistent with a negative correlation of basement roughness and spreading rate where roughness decreases dramatically through the slow-spreading regime (oceanic basement roughness and spreading rate appears to have existed since the late Cretaceous for slow and intermediate spreading rates, suggesting that the fundamental processes creating abyssal hill topography may have remained the same for this time period. Basement roughness does not appear to decrease (smooth) with increasing crustal age, and therefore off-ridge degradation of abyssal hill topography by mass wasting is not detected by our data. Seismic data reveal that sediment thickness increases with increasing crustal age in the South Australian Basin and Argentine Basin, but not monotonically and with significant regional variation. We show that minor accumulations of sediment can affect roughness significantly. Average sediment accumulations of less that 50 m (for our 100 km long sample seismic profiles and half-spreading rates ocean ridges.

  16. NOAA Climate Data Record (CDR) of AVHRR Daily and Monthly Aerosol Optical Thickness (AOT) over Global Oceans, Version 3.0

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The product is the aerosol optical thickness (AOT) at 0.63 micron, which is retrieved from NOAA PATMOS-x level-2B orbital radinace and cloud CDR products. The...

  17. Asymmetric Early Crust-Building Magmatism on the Lunar Nearside Due to KREEP-Induced Melting Point Depression

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elardo, S. M.; Shearer, C. K.; McCuddin, F. M.

    2018-01-01

    The lunar magnesian-suite, or Mg-suite, is a series of ancient plutonic rocks from the lunar crust with ages and compositions indicating that they represent crust-building magmatism occurring immediately after the end of magma ocean crystallization. Samples of the Mg-suite were found at every Apollo landing site except 11 and ubiquitously have geochemical characteristics indicating the involvement of KREEP in their petrogenesis. This observation has led to the suggestion that the presence of the KREEP reservoir under the lunar nearside was responsible for this episode of crust building. The lack of any readily identifiable Mg-suite rocks in meteoritic regolith breccias sourced from outside the Procellarum KREEP Terrane (PKT) seemingly supports this interpretation.

  18. Crustal structure variations along the NW-African continental margin: A comparison of new and existing models from wide-angle and reflection seismic data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klingelhoefer, Frauke; Biari, Youssef; Sahabi, Mohamed; Aslanian, Daniel; Schnabel, Michael; Matias, Luis; Benabdellouahed, Massinissa; Funck, Thomas; Gutscher, Marc-André; Reichert, Christian; Austin, James A.

    2016-04-01

    Deep seismic data represent a key to understand the geometry and mechanism of continental rifting. The passive continental margin of NW-Africa is one of the oldest on earth, formed during the Upper Triassic-Lower Liassic rifting of the central Atlantic Ocean over 200 Ma. We present new and existing wide-angle and reflection seismic data from four study regions along the margin located in the south offshore DAKHLA, on the central continental margin offshore Safi, in the northern Moroccan salt basin, and in the Gulf of Cadiz. The thickness of unthinned continental crust decreases from 36 km in the North to about 27 km in the South. Crustal thinning takes place over a region of 150 km in the north and only 70 km in the south. The North Moroccan Basin is underlain by highly thinned continental crust of only 6-8 km thickness. The ocean-continent transition zone shows a variable width between 40 and 70 km and is characterized by seismic velocities in between those of typical oceanic and thinned continental crust. The neighbouring oceanic crust is characterized by a thickness of 7-8 km along the complete margin. Relatively high velocities of up to 7.5 km/s have been imaged between magnetic anomalies S1 and M25, and are probably related to changes in the spreading velocities at the time of the Kimmeridgian/Tithonian plate reorganization. Volcanic activity seems to be mostly confined to the region next to the Canary Islands, and is thus not related to the initial opening of the ocean, which was associated to only weak volcanism. Comparison with the conjugate margin off Nova Scotia shows comparable continental crustal structures, but 2-3 km thinner oceanic crust on the American side than on the African margin.

  19. Age, spreading rates, and spreading asymmetry of the world's ocean crust

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The authors present four companion digital models of the age, age uncertainty, spreading rates and spreading asymmetries of the world's ocean basins as geographic...

  20. 3D Gravimetric Modeling of the Spreading System North and Southeast of the Rodriguez Triple Junction (Indian Ocean)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heyde, I.; Girolami, C.; Barckhausen, U.; Freitag, R.

    2017-12-01

    Hydrothermal vent fields along mid-ocean ridges can be metal-rich and thus of great importance for the industries in the future. By order of the German Federal Ministry of Economics and in coordination with the International Seabed Authority (ISA), BGR explores potential areas of the active spreading system in the Indian Ocean. A main goal is the identification of inactive seafloor massive sulfides (SMS) with the aid of modern exploration techniques. Important contributions could be expected from bathymetric, magnetic, and gravity datasets, which can be acquired simultaneously time from the sea surface within relatively short ship time. The area of interest is located between 21°S and 28°S and includes the southern Central Indian Ridge (CIR) and the northern Southeast Indian Ridge (SEIR). In this study we analyzed the marine gravity and bathymetric data acquired during six research cruises. The profiles running perpendicular to the ridge axis have a mean length of 60 km. Magnetic studies reveal that the parts of the ridges covered are geologically very young with the oldest crust dating back to about 1 Ma. To extend the area outside the ridges, the shipboard data were complemented with data derived from satellite radar altimeter measurements. We analyzed the gravity anomalies along sections which cross particular geologic features (uplifted areas, accommodation zones, hydrothermal fields, and areas with hints for extensional processes e.g. oceanic core complexes) to establish a correlation between the gravity anomalies and the surface geology. Subsequently, for both ridge segments 3D density models were developed. We started with simple horizontally layered models, which, however, do not explain the measured anomalies satisfyingly. The density values of the crust and the upper mantle in the ridge areas had to be reduced. Finally, the models show the lateral heterogeneity and the variations in the thickness of the oceanic crust. There are areas characterized by

  1. A thin, dense crust for Mercury

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sori, Michael M.

    2018-05-01

    Crustal thickness is a crucial geophysical parameter in understanding the geology and geochemistry of terrestrial planets. Recent development of mathematical techniques suggests that previous studies based on assumptions of isostasy overestimated crustal thickness on some of the solid bodies of the solar system, leading to a need to revisit those analyses. Here, I apply these techniques to Mercury. Using MESSENGER-derived elemental abundances, I calculate a map of grain density (average 2974 ± 89 kg/m3) which shows that Pratt isostasy is unlikely to be a major compensation mechanism of Mercury's topography. Assuming Airy isostasy, I find the best fit value for Mercury's mean crustal thickness is 26 ± 11 km, 25% lower than the most recently reported and previously thinnest number. Several geological implications follow from this relatively low value for crustal thickness, including showing that the largest impacts very likely excavated mantle material onto Mercury's surface. The new results also show that Mercury and the Moon have a similar proportion of their rocky silicates composing their crusts, and thus Mercury is not uniquely efficient at crustal production amongst terrestrial bodies. Higher resolution topography and gravity data, especially for the southern hemisphere, will be necessary to refine Mercury's crustal parameters further.

  2. Magnetic Fields Induced in the Solid Earth and Oceans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kuvshinov, Alexei; Olsen, Nils

    , utilizing realistic 3-D conductivity models of the oceans, crust and mantle. In addition to these improvements in the prediction of 3-D induction effects, much attention has been paid to identifying magnetic signals of oceanic origin in observatory and satellite data. During the talk we will present...

  3. Microstructure, texture and colour development during crust formation on whole muscle chicken fillets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barbut, S

    2013-01-01

    1. The development of crust during a 22-min period was evaluated in an oven, and in previously cooked-in-bag products (no crust) placed in an oven for 10 min. The oven-roasted products started to develop a thin (2-4 μm) crust layer after 4 min. At that point, the colour of the fillets turned white but no browning was observed. As roasting time increased, crust thickness and shear force increased, the product turned brown and eventually black at certain spots. 2. Light microscopy revealed the shrinking of muscle fibres close to the surface, as they also lost water. At a certain point, tears between the different layers started to appear. The inner muscle fibres also progressively shrank and the spaces between them increased. Microscopy of cook-in-bag products revealed no crust formation during heating. Upon moving to the oven, crust started to form but was much faster compared with the other products. 3. Cook-in-the-bag samples showed a higher rate of cook loss during the first 12 min (to internal 70°C) compared with oven heating. This could have been due to the fast heating rate in water and/or no crust formation. 4. White colour was fully formed on water-cooked fillets within 2 min (L* = 83), while it was gradually forming on oven-roasted samples (max L* of 79 after 12 min). 5. Shear force measurements showed an increase in both treatments up to 18 min, with a decrease thereafter (when dry crust started to crack).

  4. Experimental Simulations of Lunar Magma Ocean Crystallization: The Plot (But Not the Crust) Thickens

    Science.gov (United States)

    Draper, D. S.; Rapp, J. F.; Elardo, S. M.; Shearer, C. K., Jr.; Neal, C. R.

    2016-01-01

    Numerical models of differentiation of a global-scale lunar magma ocean (LMO) have raised as many questions as they have answered. Recent orbital missions and sample studies have provided new context for a large range of lithologies, from the comparatively magnesian "purest anorthosite" reported by to Si-rich domes and spinel-rich clasts with widespread areal distributions. In addition, the GRAIL mission provided strong constraints on lunar crustal density and average thickness. Can this increasingly complex geology be accounted for via the formation and evolution of the LMO? We have in recent years been conducting extensive sets of petrologic experiments designed to fully simulate LMO crystallization, which had not been attempted previously. Here we review the key results from these experiments, which show that LMO differentiation is more complex than initial models suggested. Several important features expected from LMO crystallization models have yet to be reproduced experimentally; combined modelling and experimental work by our group is ongoing.

  5. A rapid method for creating qualitative images indicative of thick oil emulsion on the ocean's surface from imaging spectrometer data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kokaly, Raymond F.; Hoefen, Todd M.; Livo, K. Eric; Swayze, Gregg A.; Leifer, Ira; McCubbin, Ian B.; Eastwood, Michael L.; Green, Robert O.; Lundeen, Sarah R.; Sarture, Charles M.; Steele, Denis; Ryan, Thomas; Bradley, Eliza S.; Roberts, Dar A.; ,

    2010-01-01

    This report describes a method to create color-composite images indicative of thick oil:water emulsions on the surface of clear, deep ocean water by using normalized difference ratios derived from remotely sensed data collected by an imaging spectrometer. The spectral bands used in the normalized difference ratios are located in wavelength regions where the spectra of thick oil:water emulsions on the ocean's surface have a distinct shape compared to clear water and clouds. In contrast to quantitative analyses, which require rigorous conversion to reflectance, the method described is easily computed and can be applied rapidly to radiance data or data that have been atmospherically corrected or ground-calibrated to reflectance. Examples are shown of the method applied to Airborne Visible/Infrared Imaging Spectrometer data collected May 17 and May 19, 2010, over the oil spill from the Deepwater Horizon offshore oil drilling platform in the Gulf of Mexico.

  6. Effect of crust increase on natural convection heat transfer in the molten metal pool

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Park, Rae Joon; Kim, Sang Baik; Kim, Hee Dong; Choi, Sang Min

    1999-01-01

    An experimental study has been performed on natural convection heat transfer with a rapid crust formation in the molten metal pool of a low Prandtl number fluid. Two types of steady state tests, a low and high geometric aspect ratio cases in the molten metal pool, were performed. The crust thickness by solidification was measured as a function of boundary surface temperatures. The experimental results on the relationship between the Nusselt number and Rayleigh number in the molten metal pool with a crust formation were compared with existing correlations. The experimental study has shown that the bottom surface temperature of the molten metal layer, in all experiments, is the major influential parameter in the crust formation, due to the natural convection flow. The Nusselt number of the case without a crust formation in the molten metal pool is greater than that of the case with the crust formation at the same Rayleigh number. The present experimental results on the relationship between the Nusselt number and Rayleigh number in the molten metal pool match well with Globe and Dropkin's correlation. From the experimental results, a new correlation between the Nusselt number and Rayleigh number in the molten metal pool with the crust formation was developed as Nu=0.0923 (Ra) 0.0923 (2 X 10 4 7 ). (author)

  7. MEDICIS(ASTEC-V2) sensitivity calculations for investigation of the crust formation in VB-U5 and VB-U6 VULCANO tests

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stefanova, A.; Grudev, P.; Gencheva, R.

    2011-01-01

    This paper presents the results from sensitivity calculations made with MEDICIS(ASTECv2) for investigation of the crust formation during the Molten Corium-Concrete Interaction(MCCI) in VB-U5 and VB-U6 VULCANO tests. All calculations are made with MEDICIS computer code. The main goal of these analyses is to assess how the assumptions for crust formation or not formation influence over the concrete ablation. Three calculations have been done for each one of the experiments with different crust thickness and lock of crust formation at the bottom, side and upper surface. (authors)

  8. The Relation Between Plate Spreading Rate, Crustal Thickness and Axial Relief at Mid-Ocean Ridges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Z.; Buck, W. R.

    2017-12-01

    Variations in axial valley relief and in faulting at plate spreading centers are clearly related to magma supply and axial lithospheric structure. Previous models that consider the interaction of magmatic dikes with lithospheric stretching do not successfully reproduce both of these trends. We present the first model that reproduces these trends by making simple assumptions about the partitioning of magma between dikes, gabbros and extrusives. A key concept is that dikes open not only in the brittle axial lithosphere but also into the underlying ductile crust, where they cool to form gabbro. The amount of gabbro so intruded depends on magma pressure that is related to axial relief. The deeper the valley the less magma goes into gabbros and the more magma is available for dikes to accommodate plate separation. We define the fraction of plate separation rate accommodated by dikes as M. If Mreasonable. Finally, we describe themo-mechanical models that allow us to relate plate spreading rate and crustal thickness and to axial valley depth.

  9. 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...

  10. Isotope composition and volume of Earth´s early oceans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pope, Emily Catherine; Bird, Dennis K.; Rosing, Minik Thorleif

    2012-01-01

    Oxygen and hydrogen isotope compositions of Earth´s seawater are controlled by volatile fluxes among mantle, lithospheric (oceanic and continental crust), and atmospheric reservoirs. Throughout geologic time the oxygen mass budget was likely conserved within these Earth system reservoirs, but hyd...... in Earth´s oceans. Our calculations predict that the oceans of early Earth were up to 26% more voluminous, and atmospheric CH4 and CO2 concentrations determined from limits on hydrogen escape to space are consistent with clement conditions on Archaean Earth.......Oxygen and hydrogen isotope compositions of Earth´s seawater are controlled by volatile fluxes among mantle, lithospheric (oceanic and continental crust), and atmospheric reservoirs. Throughout geologic time the oxygen mass budget was likely conserved within these Earth system reservoirs......, but hydrogen´s was not, as it can escape to space. Isotopic properties of serpentine from the approximately 3.8 Ga Isua Supracrustal Belt in West Greenland are used to characterize hydrogen and oxygen isotope compositions of ancient seawater. Archaean oceans were depleted in deuterium [expressed as Î...

  11. Development of continental margins of the Atlantic Ocean and successive breakup of the Pangaea-3 supercontinent

    Science.gov (United States)

    Melankholina, E. N.; Sushchevskaya, N. M.

    2017-01-01

    Comparative tectonic analysis of passive margins of the Atlantic Ocean has been performed. Tectonotypes of both volcanic and nonvolcanic margins are described, and their comparison with other passive Atlantic margins is given. The structural features of margins, peculiarities of magmatism, its sources and reasons for geochemical enrichment of melts are discussed. The important role of melting of the continental lithosphere in the development of magmatism is demonstrated. Enriched EM I and EM II sources are determined for the lower parts of the volcanic section, and a depleted or poorly enriched source is determined for the upper parts of the volcanic section based on isotope data. The conclusions of the paper relate to tectonic settings of the initial occurrence of magmatism and rifting and breakup during the period of opening of the Mesozoic Ocean. It was found out that breakup and magmatism at proximal margins led only to insignificant structural transformations and reduction of the thickness of the ancient continental crust, while very important magmatic events happened later in the distal zone. New growth of magmatic crust at the stage of continental breakup is determined as a typical feature of distal zones of the margins under study. The relationship of development of margins with the impact of deep plumes as the source of magmatic material or a heat source only is discussed. Progradation of the zone of extension and breakup into the areas of cold lithosphere of the Atlantic and the formation of a single tectonomagmatic system of the ocean are under consideration.

  12. Thick deltaic sedimentation and detachment faulting delay the onset of continental rupture in the Northern Gulf of California: Analysis of seismic reflection profiles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, A.; González-Escobar, M.; Fletcher, J. M.; Pacheco, M.; Oskin, M. E.; Dorsey, R. J.

    2013-12-01

    The transition from distributed continental extension to the rupture of continental lithosphere is imaged in the northern Gulf of California across the obliquely conjugate Tiburón-Upper Delfín basin segment. Structural mapping on a 5-20 km grid of seismic reflection lines of Petroleos Mexicanos (PEMEX) demonstrates that ~1000% extension is accommodated on a series of NNE-striking listric-normal faults that merge at depth into a detachment fault. The detachment juxtaposes a late-Neogene marine sequence over thinned continental crust and contains an intrabasinal divide due to footwall uplift. Two northwest striking, dextral-oblique faults bound both ends of the detachment and shear the continental crust parallel to the tectonic transport. A regional unconformity in the upper 0.5 seconds (TWTT) and crest erosion of rollover anticlines above the detachment indicates inversion and footwall uplift during the lithospheric rupture in the Upper Delfin and Lower Delfin basins. The maximum length of new crust in both Delfin basins is less than 40 km based on the lack of an acoustic basement and the absence of a lower sedimentary sequence beneath a wedge shaped upper sequence that reaches >5 km in thickness. A fundamental difference exists between the Tiburón-Delfin segment and the Guaymas segment to the south in terms of presence of low angle normal faults and amount of new oceanic lithosphere, which we attribute to thermal insulation, diffuse upper-plate extension, and slip on low angle normal faults engendered by a thick sedimentary lid.

  13. Crust-mantle branch of the global carbon cycle and origin of deep-seated hydrocarbons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sorokhtin N. O.

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available The processes of multi-stage and polycyclic transformation and transfer of carbon in the crust and mantle have been described. The sediments drawn in the plate underthrust zones break down, become transformed and altered by metamorphic events, and part of the newly formed carbon compounds is transferred by the mantle convective currents to rift zones of the mid-oceanic ridges and carried up to the surface as hydrocarbons of various composition and carbon dioxide. This material becomes re-deposited on the sea floor as sediments forming carbonaceous and carbon-bearing units. As a result of multi-stage mechanism of physical and chemical transformations in the crust-mantle areas of the Earth hydrocarbon compounds acquire features of abiogenic origin remaining, in fact, exogenic. The revealed crust-mantle carbon cycle represents part of a global process for the cyclic carbon transfer from the atmosphere to the mantle and back. The scale of its manifestation is likely not so wide, and numerous small (mm and portions of millimeters particles of exogenic substance and dispersed carbon drawn in the plate underthrust zones form a stable geochemical tail of the crustal direction in the mantle propagating in the plane of convective currents motion. The scale of this process may be indirectly suggested by the volumes of hydrocarbon and carbon dioxide de-gassing and hydrogen in the rift systems of the Earth crust. The amount of generated hydrocarbon gases with deep-seated origin cannot form large gas and oil-and-gas fields since their significant part is transferred to the atmosphere. Just some portion of compounds may be deposited in oceanic sediments and generate gas-hydrate pools.

  14. Crustal characteristic variation in the central Yamato Basin, Japan Sea back-arc basin, deduced from seismic survey results

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sato, Takeshi; No, Tetsuo; Miura, Seiichi; Kodaira, Shuichi

    2018-02-01

    The crustal structure of the Yamato Bank, the central Yamato Basin, and the continental shelf in the southern Japan Sea back-arc basin is obtained based on a seismic survey using ocean bottom seismographs and seismic shot to elucidate the back-arc basin formation processes. The central Yamato Basin can be divided into three domains based on the crustal structure: the deep basin, the seamount, and the transition domains. In the deep basin domain, the crust without the sedimentary layer is about 12-13 km thick. Very few units have P-wave velocity of 5.4-6.0 km/s, which corresponds to the continental upper crust. In the seamount and transition domains, the crust without the sedimentary layer is about 12-16 km thick. The P-wave velocities of the upper and lower crusts differs among the deep basin, the seamount, and the transition domains. These results indicate that the central Yamato Basin displays crustal variability in different domains. The crust of the deep basin domain is oceanic in nature and suggests advanced back-arc basin development. The seamount domain might have been affected by volcanic activity after basin opening. In the transition domain, the crust comprises mixed characters of continental and oceanic crust. This crustal variation might represent the influence of different processes in the central Yamato Basin, suggesting that crustal development was influenced not only by back-arc opening processes but also by later volcanic activity. In the Yamato Bank and continental shelf, the upper crust has thickness of about 17-18 km and P-wave velocities of 3.3-4.1 to 6.6 km/s. The Yamato Bank and the continental shelf suggest a continental crustal character.

  15. Seismofocal zones and mid-ocean ridges - look outside of the plate paradigm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anokhin, Vladimir; Kholmianskii, Mikhail

    2014-05-01

    Seismofocal zones and mid-ocean ridges - look outside of the plate paradigm Vladimir M. Anokhin, Mikhail A. Kholmianskii Configuration of the seismofocal zones (SFZ), visible in a real position of the focuses of earthquakes, has a significant step component (jagged) expressed by the presence of several sub-horizontal "seismoplanes", which concentrates focuses of earthquakes (depths 10, 35 km and other). Orientation of seismolines inside of SFZ tends to 4 main directions: 0-5 dgr, 120-145 dgr, 40-55 dgr, 85-90 dgr. These facts suggest significantly block, a terraced structure of the body of Benioff zone. The borders of blocks have orientation according directions regmatic net of the Earth. In accordance with this, SFZ can be presented as the most active segments of the border of the crossing: «continent-ocean», having the following properties: - block (terraced) structure; - in some sites - dive under the continental crust (in present time); - prevailing compression (in present time), perhaps, as the period of the oscillatory cycle; Infinite "subduction" in SFZ is unlikely. One of the areas where there is proof of concept of far "spreading" is the southernmost tip of the mid-oceanic Gakkel ridge in the Laptev sea (Arctic ocean). Here active "spreading" ridge normal approaches to the boundary of the continental crust - the shelf of the Laptev sea. On the shelf there are a number of subparallel NW grabens. NE fault zone Charlie, controlling the continental slope is established stepped fault without shift component. This means that the amount of extending of the offshore grabens does not significantly differ from the scale of spreading in the Gakkel ridge. However, the total spreads grabens (50-100 km) 6-10 times less than the width of the oceanic crust (600 km) in the surrounding area. Conclusion: the oceanic crust in the Laptev sea was formed mainly not due to "spreading". It is very likely that here was sinking and the processing of continental crust in the ocean

  16. Biological Soil Crust Web Site

    Science.gov (United States)

    www.soilcrust.org Crust 101 Advanced Gallery References CCERS site Links Biological Soil Crusts Textbook Corrections Level of Development Index Biological soil crusts are the community of organisms , mosses, liverworts and lichens. A Field Guide to Biological Soil Crusts of Western U.S. Drylands: Common

  17. Detrital Zircon Geochronology of Sedimentary Rocks of the 3.6 - 3.2 Ga Barberton Greenstone Belt: No Evidence for Older Continental Crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drabon, N.; Lowe, D. R.; Byerly, G. R.; Harrington, J.

    2017-12-01

    The crustal setting of early Archean greenstone belts and whether they formed on or associated with blocks of older continental crust or in more oceanic settings remains a major issue in Archean geology. We report detrital zircon U-Pb age data from sandstones of the 3.26-3.20 Ga Fig Tree and Moodies Groups and from 3.47 to 3.23 Ga meteorite impact-related deposits in the 3.55-3.20 Ga Barberton greenstone belt (BGB), South Africa. The provenance signatures of these sediments are characterized by zircon age peaks at 3.54, 3.46, 3.40, 3.30, and 3.25 Ga. These clusters are coincident either with the ages of major episodes of felsic to intermediate igneous activity within and around the belt or with the ages of thin felsic tuffs reflecting distant volcanic activity. Only 15 of the reported 3410 grains (old zircons could represent felsic rocks in older, unexposed parts of the BGB sequence, but are too few to provide evidence for a continental source. This finding offers further evidence that the large, thick, high-standing, highly evolved blocks of continental crust with an andesitic bulk composition that characterize the Earth during younger geologic times were scarce in the early Archean.

  18. The Taitao Granites: I-type granites formed by subduction of the Chile Ridge and its implication in growth of continental crusts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anma, Ryo

    2016-04-01

    Late Miocene to Early Pliocene granite plutons are exposed at the tip of the Taitao peninsula, the westernmost promontory of the Chilean coast, together with a contemporaneous ophiolite with a Penrose-type stratigraphy. Namely, the Taitao granites and the Taitao ohiolite, respectively, are located at ~30 km southeast of the Chile triple junction, where a spreading center of the Chile ridge system is subducting underneath the South America plate. This unique tectonic setting provides an excellent opportunity to study the generation processes of granitic magmas at a ridge subduction environment, and the complex magmatic interactions between the subducting ridge, overlying crust and sediments, and mantle. This paper reviews previous studies on the Taitao ophiolite/granite complex and use geochemical data and U-Pb age distributions of zircons separated from igneous and sedimentary rocks from the area to discuss the mechanism that formed juvenile magma of calc-alkaline I-type granites during ridge subduction. Our model implies that the magmas of the Taitao granites formed mainly due to partial melting of hot oceanic crust adjacent to the subducting mid-oceanic ridge that has been under influence of deep crustal contamination and/or metasomatized sub-arc mantle through slab window. The partial melting took place under garnet-free-amphibolite conditions. The juvenile magmas then incorporated a different amount of subducted sediments to form the I-type granites with various compositions. The Taitao granites provide an ideal case study field that shows the processes to develop continental crusts out of oceanic crusts through ridge subduction.

  19. Crustal accretion along the global mid-ocean ridge system based on basaltic glass and olivine-hosted melt inclusion compositions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wanless, V. D.; Behn, M. D.

    2015-12-01

    The depth and distribution of crystallization at mid-ocean ridges controls the overall architecture of the oceanic crust, influences hydrothermal circulation, and determines geothermal gradients in the crust and uppermost mantle. Despite this, there is no overall consensus on how crystallization is distributed within the crust/upper mantle or how this varies with spreading rate. Here, we examine crustal accretion at mid-ocean ridges by combining crystallization pressures calculated from major element barometers on mid-ocean ridge basalt (MORB) glasses with vapor-saturation pressures from melt inclusions to produce a detailed map of crystallization depths and distributions along the global ridge system. We calculate pressures of crystallization from >11,500 MORB glasses from the global ridge system using two established major element barometers (1,2). Additionally, we use vapor-saturation pressures from >400 olivine-hosted melt inclusions from five ridges with variable spreading rates to constrain pressures and distributions of crystallization along the global ridge system. We show that (i) crystallization depths from MORB glasses increase and become less focused with decreasing spreading rate, (ii) maximum glass pressures are greater than the maximum melt inclusion pressure, which indicates that the melt inclusions do not record the deepest crystallization at mid-ocean ridges, and (iii) crystallization occurs in the lower crust/upper mantle at all ridges, indicating accretion is distributed throughout the crust at all spreading rates, including those with a steady-state magma lens. Finally, we suggest that the remarkably similar maximum vapor-saturation pressures (~ 3000 bars) in melt inclusion from all spreading rates reflects the CO2 content of the depleted upper mantle feeding the global mid-ocean ridge system. (1) Michael, P. & W. Cornell (1998), Journal of Geophysical Research, 103(B8), 18325-18356; (2) Herzberg, C. (2004), Journal of Petrology, 45(12), 2389.

  20. Self-Consistent Generation of Primordial Continental Crust in Global Mantle Convection Models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jain, C.; Rozel, A.; Tackley, P. J.

    2017-12-01

    We present the generation of primordial continental crust (TTG rocks) using self-consistent and evolutionary thermochemical mantle convection models (Tackley, PEPI 2008). Numerical modelling commonly shows that mantle convection and continents have strong feedbacks on each other. However in most studies, continents are inserted a priori while basaltic (oceanic) crust is generated self-consistently in some models (Lourenco et al., EPSL 2016). Formation of primordial continental crust happened by fractional melting and crystallisation in episodes of relatively rapid growth from late Archean to late Proterozoic eras (3-1 Ga) (Hawkesworth & Kemp, Nature 2006) and it has also been linked to the onset of plate tectonics around 3 Ga. It takes several stages of differentiation to generate Tonalite-Trondhjemite-Granodiorite (TTG) rocks or proto-continents. First, the basaltic magma is extracted from the pyrolitic mantle which is both erupted at the surface and intruded at the base of the crust. Second, it goes through eclogitic transformation and then partially melts to form TTGs (Rudnick, Nature 1995; Herzberg & Rudnick, Lithos 2012). TTGs account for the majority of the Archean continental crust. Based on the melting conditions proposed by Moyen (Lithos 2011), the feasibility of generating TTG rocks in numerical simulations has already been demonstrated by Rozel et al. (Nature, 2017). Here, we have developed the code further by parameterising TTG formation. We vary the ratio of intrusive (plutonic) and extrusive (volcanic) magmatism (Crisp, Volcanol. Geotherm. 1984) to study the relative volumes of three petrological TTG compositions as reported from field data (Moyen, Lithos 2011). Furthermore, we systematically vary parameters such as friction coefficient, initial core temperature and composition-dependent viscosity to investigate the global tectonic regime of early Earth. Continental crust can also be destroyed by subduction or delamination. We will investigate

  1. DaMaSCUS-CRUST: Dark Matter Simulation Code for Underground Scatterings - Crust Edition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emken, Timon; Kouvaris, Chris

    2018-03-01

    DaMaSCUS-CRUST determines the critical cross-section for strongly interacting DM for various direct detection experiments systematically and precisely using Monte Carlo simulations of DM trajectories inside the Earth's crust, atmosphere, or any kind of shielding. Above a critical dark matter-nucleus scattering cross section, any terrestrial direct detection experiment loses sensitivity to dark matter, since the Earth crust, atmosphere, and potential shielding layers start to block off the dark matter particles. This critical cross section is commonly determined by describing the average energy loss of the dark matter particles analytically. However, this treatment overestimates the stopping power of the Earth crust; therefore, the obtained bounds should be considered as conservative. DaMaSCUS-CRUST is a modified version of DaMaSCUS (ascl:1706.003) that accounts for shielding effects and returns a precise exclusion band.

  2. Nanocalorimetric characterization of microbial activity in deep subsurface oceanic crustal fluids

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alberto eRobador

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Although fluids within the upper oceanic basaltic crust harbor a substantial fraction of the total prokaryotic cells on Earth, the energy needs of this microbial population are unknown. In this study, a nanocalorimeter (sensitivity down to 4.3 x 10-3 mJ h-1 ml-1 was used to measure the enthalpy of microbially catalyzed reactions as a function of temperature in samples from two distinct crustal fluid aquifers. Microorganisms in unamended, warm (63 °C and geochemically altered anoxic fluids taken from 292 meters sub-basement (msb near the Juan de Fuca Ridge produced 267.3 mJ of heat over the course of 97 hours during a step-wise isothermal scan from 35.5 to 85.0 °C. Most of this heat signal likely stems from the germination of thermophilic endospores (6.66 x 104 cells ml-1FLUID and their subsequent metabolic activity at temperatures greater than 50 °C. The average cellular energy consumption (1.79 x 10-7 kJ h-1 cell-1 reveals the high metabolic potential of a dormant community transported by fluids circulating through the ocean crust. By contrast, samples taken from 293 msb from cooler (3.8 °C, relatively unaltered oxic fluids, produced 12.8 mJ of heat over the course of 14 hours as temperature ramped from 34.8 to 43.0 °C. Corresponding cell-specific energy turnover rates (0.18 pW cell-1 were converted to oxygen uptake rates of 24.5 nmol O2 ml-1FLUID d-1, validating previous model predictions of microbial activity in this environment. Given that the investigated fluids are characteristic of expansive areas of the upper oceanic crust, the measured metabolic heat rates can be used to constrain boundaries of habitability and microbial activity in the oceanic crust.

  3. Growth response of a deep-water ferromanganese crust to evolution of the Neogene Indian Ocean

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Banakar, V.K.; Hein, J.R.

    of crust accretion. PSsPleistocene; PLsPliocene; LMsLate Miocene; MMsMiddle Miocene; EMsEarly Miocene; LOsLate Oligocene; EOsEarly Oligocene; LEsLate Eocene; MEsMiddle Eocene; EEsEarly Eocene; and PsPalaeocene. High carbonate accumulation due to substantial...

  4. Crust and uppermost-mantle structure of Greenland and the Northwest Atlantic from Rayleigh wave group velocity tomography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darbyshire, Fiona A.; Dahl-Jensen, Trine; Larsen, Tine B.; Voss, Peter H.; Joyal, Guillaume

    2018-03-01

    The Greenland landmass preserves ˜4 billion years of tectonic history, but much of the continent is inaccessible to geological study due to the extensive inland ice cap. We map out, for the first time, the 3-D crustal structure of Greenland and the NW Atlantic ocean, using Rayleigh wave anisotropic group velocity tomography, in the period range 10-80 s, from regional earthquakes and the ongoing GLATIS/GLISN seismograph networks. 1-D inversion gives a pseudo-3-D model of shear wave velocity structure to depths of ˜100 km with a horizontal resolution of ˜200 km. Crustal thickness across mainland Greenland ranges from ˜25 km to over 50 km, and the velocity structure shows considerable heterogeneity. The large sedimentary basins on the continental shelf are clearly visible as low velocities in the upper ˜5-15 km. Within the upper continental basement, velocities are systematically lower in northern Greenland than in the south, and exhibit a broadly NW-SE trend. The thinning of the crust at the continental margins is also clearly imaged. Upper-mantle velocities show a clear distinction between typical fast cratonic lithosphere (Vs ≥4.6 km s-1) beneath Greenland and its NE margin and anomalously slow oceanic mantle (Vs ˜4.3-4.4 km s-1) beneath the NW Atlantic. We do not observe any sign of pervasive lithospheric modification across Greenland in the regions associated with the presumed Iceland hotspot track, though the average crustal velocity in this region is higher than that of areas to the north and south. Crustal anisotropy beneath Greenland is strong and complex, likely reflecting numerous episodes of tectonic deformation. Beneath the North Atlantic and Baffin Bay, the dominant anisotropy directions are perpendicular to the active and extinct spreading centres. Anisotropy in the subcontinental lithosphere is weaker than that of the crust, but still significant, consistent with cratonic lithosphere worldwide.

  5. The effects of thick sediment upon continental breakup: seismic imaging and thermal modeling of the Salton Trough, southern California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, L.; Hole, J. A.; Lowell, R. P.; Stock, J. M.; Fuis, G. S.; Driscoll, N. W.; Kell, A. M.; Kent, G. M.; Harding, A. J.; Gonzalez-Fernandez, A.; Lázaro-Mancilla, O.

    2015-12-01

    Continental rifting ultimately creates a deep accommodation space for sediment. When a major river flows into a late-stage rift, thick deltaic sediment can change the thermal regime and alter the mechanisms of extension and continental breakup. The Salton Trough, the northernmost rift segment of the Gulf of California plate boundary, has experienced the same extension as the rest of the Gulf, but is filled to sea level by sediment from the Colorado River. Unlike the southern Gulf, seafloor spreading has not initiated. Instead, seismicity, high heat flow, and minor volcanoes attest to ongoing rifting of thin, transitional crust. Recently acquired controlled-source seismic refraction and wide-angle reflection data in the Salton Trough provide constraints upon crustal architecture and active rift processes. The crust in the central Salton Trough is only 17-18 km thick, with a strongly layered but relatively one-dimensional structure for ~100 km in the direction of plate motion. The upper crust includes 2-4 km of Colorado River sediment. Crystalline rock below the sediment is interpreted to be similar sediment metamorphosed by the high heat flow and geothermal activity. Meta-sediment extends to at least 9 km depth. A 4-5 km thick layer in the middle crust is either additional meta-sediment or stretched pre-existing continental crust. The lowermost 4-5 km of the crust is rift-related mafic magmatic intrusion or underplating from partial melting in the hot upper mantle. North American lithosphere in the Salton Trough has been almost or completely rifted apart. The gap has been filled by ~100 km of new transitional crust created by magmatism from below and sedimentation from above. These processes create strong lithologic, thermal, and rheologic layering. While heat flow in the rift is very high, rapid sedimentation cools the upper crust as compared to a linear geotherm. Brittle extension occurs within new meta-sedimentary rock. The lower crust, in comparison, is

  6. Arctic deep-water ferromanganese-oxide deposits reflect the unique characteristics of the Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hein, James; Konstantinova, Natalia; Mikesell, Mariah; Mizell, Kira; Fitzsimmons, Jessica N.; Lam, Phoebe; Jensen, Laramie T.; Xiang, Yang; Gartman, Amy; Cherkashov, Georgy; Hutchinson, Deborah; Till, Claire P.

    2017-01-01

    Little is known about marine mineral deposits in the Arctic Ocean, an ocean dominated by continental shelf and basins semi-closed to deep-water circulation. Here, we present data for ferromanganese crusts and nodules collected from the Amerasia Arctic Ocean in 2008, 2009, and 2012 (HLY0805, HLY0905, HLY1202). We determined mineral and chemical compositions of the crusts and nodules and the onset of their formation. Water column samples from the GEOTRACES program were analyzed for dissolved and particulate scandium concentrations, an element uniquely enriched in these deposits.The Arctic crusts and nodules are characterized by unique mineral and chemical compositions with atypically high growth rates, detrital contents, Fe/Mn ratios, and low Si/Al ratios, compared to deposits found elsewhere. High detritus reflects erosion of submarine outcrops and North America and Siberia cratons, transport by rivers and glaciers to the sea, and distribution by sea ice, brines, and currents. Uniquely high Fe/Mn ratios are attributed to expansive continental shelves, where diagenetic cycling releases Fe to bottom waters, and density flows transport shelf bottom water to the open Arctic Ocean. Low Mn contents reflect the lack of a mid-water oxygen minimum zone that would act as a reservoir for dissolved Mn. The potential host phases and sources for elements with uniquely high contents are discussed with an emphasis on scandium. Scandium sorption onto Fe oxyhydroxides and Sc-rich detritus account for atypically high scandium contents. The opening of Fram Strait in the Miocene and ventilation of the deep basins initiated Fe-Mn crust growth ∼15 Myr ago.

  7. A heat pipe mechanism for volcanism and tectonics on Venus

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Turcotte, D.L.

    1989-01-01

    A heat pipe mechanism is proposed for the transport of heat through the lithosphere on Venus. This mechanism allows the crust and lithosphere on Venus to be greater than 150 km thick. A thick crust and thick lithosphere can explain the high observed topography and large associated gravity anomalies. For a 150-km-thick lithosphere the required volcanic flux on Venus is 200 km 3 /yr; this is compared with a flux of 17 km 3 /yr associated with the formation of the oceanic crust on Earth. A thick basaltic crust on Venus is expected to transform to eclogite at a depth of 60 to 80 km; the dense eclogite would contribute the lithospheric delamination that returns the crust to the interior of the planet completing the heat pipe cycle. Topography and the associated gravity anomalies can be explained by Airy compensation of the thick crust. The principal observation that is contrary to this hypothesis is the mean age of the surface that is inferred from crater statistics; the minimum mean age is about 130 Ma, and this implies an upper limit of 2 km 3 /yr for the surface volcanic flux. If the heat pipe mechanism was applicable on Earth in the Archean, it would provide the thick lithosphere implied by isotopic data from diamonds

  8. Tides on Europa: The membrane paradigm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beuthe, Mikael

    2015-03-01

    Jupiter's moon Europa has a thin icy crust which is decoupled from the mantle by a subsurface ocean. The crust thus responds to tidal forcing as a deformed membrane, cold at the top and near melting point at the bottom. In this paper I develop the membrane theory of viscoelastic shells with depth-dependent rheology with the dual goal of predicting tidal tectonics and computing tidal dissipation. Two parameters characterize the tidal response of the membrane: the effective Poisson's ratio ν bar and the membrane spring constant Λ, the latter being proportional to the crust thickness and effective shear modulus. I solve membrane theory in terms of tidal Love numbers, for which I derive analytical formulas depending on Λ, ν bar , the ocean-to-bulk density ratio and the number k2∘ representing the influence of the deep interior. Membrane formulas predict h2 and k2 with an accuracy of a few tenths of percent if the crust thickness is less than one hundred kilometers, whereas the error on l2 is a few percents. Benchmarking with the thick-shell software SatStress leads to the discovery of an error in the original, uncorrected version of the code that changes stress components by up to 40%. Regarding tectonics, I show that different stress-free states account for the conflicting predictions of thin and thick shell models about the magnitude of tensile stresses due to nonsynchronous rotation. Regarding dissipation, I prove that tidal heating in the crust is proportional to Im (Λ) and that it is equal to the global heat flow (proportional to Im (k2)) minus the core-mantle heat flow (proportional to Im (k2∘)). As an illustration, I compute the equilibrium thickness of a convecting crust. More generally, membrane formulas are useful in any application involving tidal Love numbers such as crust thickness estimates, despinning tectonics or true polar wander.

  9. Experimental Fractional Crystallization of the Lunar Magma Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rapp, J. F.; Draper, D. S.

    2012-01-01

    The current paradigm for lunar evolution is of crystallization of a global scale magma ocean, giving rise to the anorthositic crust and mafic cumulate interior. It is thought that all other lunar rocks have arisen from this differentiated interior. However, until recently this paradigm has remained untested experimentally. Presented here are the first experimental results of fractional crystallization of a Lunar Magma Ocean (LMO) using the Taylor Whole Moon (TWM) bulk lunar composition [1].

  10. Shear velocity structure of the laterally heterogeneous crust and uppermost mantle beneath the Indian region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohan, G.; Rai, S. S.; Panza, G. F.

    1997-08-01

    The shear velocity structure of the Indian lithosphere is mapped by inverting regionalized Rayleigh wave group velocities in time periods of 15-60 s. The regionalized maps are used to subdivide the Indian plate into several geologic units and determine the variation of velocity with depth in each unit. The Hedgehog Monte Carlo technique is used to obtain the shear wave velocity structure for each geologic unit, revealing distinct velocity variations in the lower crust and uppermost mantle. The Indian shield has a high-velocity (4.4-4.6 km/s) upper mantle which, however, is slower than other shields in the world. The central Indian platform comprised of Proterozoic basins and cratons is marked by a distinct low-velocity (4.0-4.2 km/s) upper mantle. Lower crustal velocities in the Indian lithosphere generally range between 3.8 and 4.0 km/s with the oceanic segments and the sedimentary basins marked by marginally higher and lower velocities, respectively. A remarkable contrast is observed in upper mantle velocities between the northern and eastern convergence fronts of the Indian plate. The South Bruma region along the eastern subduction front of the Indian oceanic lithosphere shows significant velocity enhancement in the lower crust and upper mantle. High velocities (≈4.8 km/s) are also observed in the upper mantle beneath the Ninetyeast ridge in the northeastern Indian Ocean.

  11. Discovery of the mineral brucite (magnesium hydroxide) in the tropical calcifying alga Polystrata dura (Peyssonneliales, Rhodophyta).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nash, Merinda C; Russell, Bayden D; Dixon, Kyatt R; Liu, Minglu; Xu, Huifang

    2015-06-01

    Red algae of the family Peyssonneliaceae typically form thin crusts impregnated with aragonite. Here, we report the first discovery of brucite in a thick red algal crust (~1 cm) formed by the peyssonnelioid species Polystrata dura from Papua New Guinea. Cells of P. dura were found to be infilled by the magnesium-rich mineral brucite [Mg(OH)2 ]; minor amounts of magnesite and calcite were also detected. We propose that cell infill may be associated with the development of thick (> ~5 mm) calcified red algal crusts, integral components of tropical biotic reefs. If brucite infill within the P. dura crust enhances resistance to dissolution similarly to crustose coralline algae that infill with dolomite, then these crusts would be more resilient to future ocean acidification than crusts without infill. © 2015 Phycological Society of America.

  12. Dew formation on the surface of biological soil crusts in central European sand ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Fischer

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Dew formation was investigated in three developmental stages of biological soil crusts (BSC, which were collected along a catena of an inland dune and in the initial substrate. The Penman equation, which was developed for saturated surfaces, was modified for unsaturated surfaces and used for prediction of dewfall rates. The levels of surface saturation required for this approach were predicted using the water retention functions and the thicknesses of the BSCs. During a first field campaign (2–3 August 2011, dewfall increased from 0.042 kg m−2 for the initial sandy substrate to 0.058, 0.143 and 0.178 kg m−2 for crusts 1 to 3, respectively. During a second field campaign (17–18 August 2011, where dew formation was recorded in 1.5 to 2.75-h intervals after installation at 21:30 CEST, dewfall increased from 0.011 kg m−2 for the initial sandy substrate to 0.013, 0.028 and 0.055 kg m−2 for crusts 1 to 3, respectively. Dewfall rates remained on low levels for the substrate and for crust 1, and decreased overnight for crusts 2 and 3 (with crust 3 > crust 2 > crust 1 throughout the campaign. Dew formation was well reflected by the model response. The suggested mechanism of dew formation involves a delay in water saturation in near-surface soil pores and extracellular polymeric substances (EPS where the crusts were thicker and where the water capacity was high, resulting in elevated vapor flux towards the surface. The results also indicate that the amount of dewfall was too low to saturate the BSCs and to observe water flow into deeper soil. Analysis of the soil water retention curves revealed that, despite the sandy mineral matrix, moist crusts clogged by swollen EPS pores exhibited a clay-like behavior. It is hypothesized that BSCs gain double benefit from suppressing their competitors by runoff generation and from improving their water supply by dew collection. Despite higher amounts of dew, the

  13. Gravity inversion of deep-crust and mantle interfaces in the Three Gorges area

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wang Jian

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available To better understand the heterogeneity of deep-crust and mantle interfaces in the region of the Three Gorges, China, we used the Parker-Oldenburg iterative inversion method to invert existing Bouguer gravity data from the Three Gorges area (1 : 500000, a new gravity map of the Three Gorges Dam (1 : 200000, and the results of deep seismic soundings. The inversion results show a Moho depth of 42 km between Badong and Zigui and the depth of the B2 lower-crustal interface beneath the Jianghan Plain and surrounding areas at 21–25 km. The morphology of crustal interfaces and the surface geology present an overpass structure. The mid-crust beneath the Three Gorges Dam is approximately 9 km thick, which is the thinnest in the Three Gorges area and may be related to the shallow low-density body near the Huangling anticline. The upper crust is seismogenic, and there is a close relationship between seismicity and the deep-crust and mantle interfaces. For example, the M5. 1 Zigui earthquake occurred where the gradients of the Moho and the B2 interface are the steepest, showing that deep structure has a very important effect on regional seismicity.

  14. 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.

  15. Evolution of Planetary Ice-Ocean Systems: Effects of Salinity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allu Peddinti, D.; McNamara, A. K.

    2015-12-01

    Planetary oceanography is enjoying renewed attention thanks to not only the detection of several exoplanetary ocean worlds but also due to the expanding family of ocean worlds within our own star system. Our solar system is now believed to host about nine ocean worlds including Earth, some dwarf planets and few moons of Jupiter and Saturn. Amongst them, Europa, like Earth is thought to have an ice Ih-liquid water system. However, the thickness of the Europan ice-ocean system is much larger than that of the Earth. The evolution of this system would determine the individual thicknesses of the ice shell and the ocean. In turn, these thicknesses can alter the course of evolution of the system. In a pure H2O system, the thickness of the ice shell would govern if heat loss occurs entirely by conduction or if the shell begins to convect as it attains a threshold thickness. This switch between conduction-convection regimes could determine the longevity of the subsurface ocean and hence define the astrobiological potential of the planetary body at any given time. In reality, however, the system is not pure water ice. The detected induced magnetic field infers a saline ocean layer. Salts are expected to act as an anti-freeze allowing a subsurface ocean to persist over long periods but the amount of salts would determine the extent of that effect. In our current study, we use geodynamic models to examine the effect of salinity on the evolution of ice-ocean system. An initial ocean with different salinities is allowed to evolve. The effect of salinity on thickness of the two layers at any time is examined. We also track how salinity controls the switch between conductive-convective modes. The study shows that for a given time period, larger salinities can maintain a thick vigorously convecting ocean while the smaller salinities behave similar to a pure H2O system leading to a thick convecting ice-shell. A range of salinities identified can potentially predict the current state

  16. Two stage melt-rock interaction in the lower oceanic crust of the Parece Vela basin (Philippine sea), evidence from the primitive troctolites from the Godzilla Megamullion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanfilippo, A.; Dick, H. J.; Ohara, Y.

    2011-12-01

    Godzilla Megamullion is a giant oceanic core complex exposed in an extinct slow- to intermediate-spreading segment of the Parece Vela Basin (Philippine sea) [1; 2]. It exposes lower crust and mantle rocks on the sea-floor, offering a unique opportunity to unravel the architecture and the composition of the lower oceanic lithosphere of an extinct back arc basin. Here we present data on primitive troctolites and associated olivine-gabbros from the breakaway area of the Godzilla Megamullion. On the basis of the olivine/plagioclase volume ratio, the troctolites are subdivided into Ol-troctolites (Ol/Pl >1) and Pl-troctolites (Ol/Plthe olivine and a melt crystallizing plagioclase and clinopyroxene. We interpret these rocks as reaction products of a dunite matrix with transient basaltic melts [e.g. 3; 4]. Pl-troctolites have euhedral plagioclase and poikilitic olivine and clinopyroxene. Irregular shapes and inverse zoning of the plagioclase chadacrysts within the olivine indicate disequilibrium between existing plagioclase and an olivine-clinopyroxene saturated melt. The occurrence of plagioclase chadacrysts within clinopyroxene ranging from irregular to euhedral in shape suggests crystallization of new lower-Na plagioclase with the clinopyroxene. Olivine oikocrysts in the Pl-troctolites have low-NiO olivine in equilibrium with a high-MgO melt. The Pl-troctolites, then, may be the product of reaction between a plagioclase cumulate and a basaltic melt produced by mixing the high-MgO melt residual to the formation of the Ol-troctolites with new magma. The effect of melt-rock reaction in the Pl- and Ol- troctolites explains the sharp decrease in plagioclase An with respect to Mg# in clinopyroxene and olivine. Furthermore, the melt is shifted towards lower Na, which is consistent with the low Na8 values of the associated MORB glasses (2.4-2.7 wt %). Our results, then, show that melt-rock interaction was a process active in the lower oceanic crust of the Parece Vela basin and

  17. Crustal rifting and magmatic underplating in the Izu-Ogasawara (Bonin) intra-oceanic arc detected by active source seismic studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takahashi, N.; Kodaira, S.; Yamashita, M.; Miura, S.; Sato, T.; No, T.; Tatsumi, Y.; Kaneda, Y.

    2009-12-01

    Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC) has carried out seismic experiments using a multichannel reflection system and ocean bottom seismographs (OBSs) in the Izu-Ogasawara (Bonin)-Mariana (IBM) arc region since 2002 to understand growth process of continental crust. The source was an airgun array with a total capacity of 12,000 cubic inches and the OBSs as the receiver were deployed with an interval of 5 km for all seismic refraction experiments. As the results, we obtained crustal structures across the whole IBM arc with an interval of 50 km and detected the structural characteristics showing the crustal growth process. The IBM arc is one of typical oceanic island arc, which crustal growth started from subduction of an oceanic crust beneath the other oceanic crust. The arc crust has developed through repeatedly magmatic accretion from subduction slab and backarc opening. The volcanism has activated in Eocene, Oligocene, Miocene and Quaternary (e.g., Taylor, 1992), however, these detailed locations of past volcanic arc has been remained as one of unknown issues. In addition, a role of crustal rifting for the crustal growth has also been still unknown issue yet. Our seismic structures show three rows of past volcanic arc crusts except current arc. A rear arc and a forearc side have one and two, respectively. The first one, which was already reported by Kodaira et al. (2008), distributes in northern side from 27 N of the rear arc region. The second one, which develops in the forearc region next to the recent volcanic front, distributes in whole of the Izu-Ogasawara arc having crustal variation along arc direction. Ones of them sometimes have thicker crust than that beneath current volcanic front and no clear topographic high. Last one in the forearc connects to the Ogasawara Ridge. However, thickest crust is not always located beneath these volcanic arcs. The initial rifting region like the northern end of the Mariana Trough and the Sumisu

  18. Ductile extension of syn-magmatic lower crusts, with application to volcanic passive margins: the Ivrea Zone (Southern Alps, Italy)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bidault, Marie; Geoffroy, Laurent; Arbaret, Laurent; Aubourg, Charles

    2017-04-01

    Deep seismic reflection profiles of present-day volcanic passive margins often show a 2-layered lower crust, from top to bottom: an apparently ductile 12 km-thick middle-lower layer (LC1) of strong folded reflectors and a 4 km-thick supra-Moho layer (LC2) of horizontal and parallel reflectors. Those layers appear to be structurally disconnected and to develop at the early stages of margins evolution. A magmatic origin has been suggested by several studies to explain those strong reflectors, favoring mafic sills intrusion hypothesis. Overlying mafic and acidic extrusives (Seaward Dipping Reflectors sequences) are bounded by continentward-dipping detachment faults rooting in, and co-structurated with, the ductile part of the lower crust (LC1). Consequently the syn-rift to post-rift evolution of volcanic passive margins (and passive margins in general) largely depends on the nature and the properties of the lower crust, yet poorly understood. We propose to investigate the properties and rheology of a magma-injected extensional lower crust with a field analogue, the Ivrea Zone (Southern Alps, Italy). The Ivrea Zone displays a complete back-thrusted section of a Variscan continental lower crust that first underwent gravitational collapse, and then lithospheric extension. This Late Paleozoic extension was apparently associated with the continuous intrusion of a large volume of mafic to acid magma. Both the magma timing and volume, and the structure of the Ivrea lower crust suggest that this section represents an adequate analogue of a syn-magmatic in-extension mafic rift zone which aborted at the end of the Permian. Notably, we may recognize the 2 layers LC1 and LC2. From a number of tectonic observations, we reconstitute the whole tectonic history of the area, focusing on the strain field evolution with time, in connection with mafic magma injection. We compare those results with available data from extensional mafic lower crusts at rifts and margins.

  19. COMPLEX GEOLOGICAL–GEOPHYSICAL 3D MODEL OF THE CRUST IN THE SOUTHEASTERN FENNOSCANDIAN SHIELD: NATURE OF DENSITY LAYERING OF THE CRUST AND THE CRUST–MANTLE BOUNDARY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. N. Glaznev

    2015-01-01

    combinations of crustal thickness and temperature at the level of Moho discontinuity, the crust in a platform region can be transformed into eclogites. In this case, the crust–mantle boundary is determined by quantitative proportions of the rocks that underwent eclogitization or escaped this process and by corresponding density and velocity values. (5 High compaction of rocks in the crust under lithostatic loading cannot be explained by «simple» concepts of metamorphism and/or rock compaction, which are based on laboratory studies of rock samples and mathematical simulations; this is an evidence of the existence of additional, quite strong mechanisms providing for reversible changes of the rocks.

  20. Deep seismic studies of conjugate profiles from the Nova Scotia - Moroccan and the Liguro-Provencal margin pairs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klingelhoefer, F.; Biari, Y.; Sahabi, M.; Aslanian, D.; Philippe, S.; Schnabel, M.; Moulin, M.; Louden, K. E.; Funck, T.; Reichert, C. J.

    2014-12-01

    The structure of conjugate passive margins provides information about rifting styles, opening of an ocean and formation of it's associated sedimentary basins. In order to distinguish between tectonic inheritance and structures directly related to rifting of passive margins conjugate profiles have to be acquired on margins on diverse locations and different ages. In this study we use new and existing reflection and wide-angle seismic data from two margin pairs, the 200 Ma year old Nova-Scotia - Morocco margin pair and the only 20 Ma Gulf of Lions - Sardinia margin pair. On both margin pairs wide-angle seismic data combined with reflection seismic data were acquired on conjugate profiles on sea and extended on land. Forward modelling of the deep crustal structure along the four transects indicates that a high velocity zone (HVZ) (> 7.2 km/s) is present at the base of the lower crust on all four margins along the ocean-continental transition zone (OCT). This may represent either exhumed upper mantle material or injection of upper mantle material into proto-oceanic crust at the onset of sea-floor spreading. However the width of the HVZ might strongly differ between conjugates, which may be the result of tectonic inheritance, for example the presence of ancient subduction zones or orogens. Both margin pairs show a similar unthinned continental crustal thickness. Crustal thinning and upper-to-lower crustal thickness vary between margin pairs, but remain nearly symmetric on conjugate profiles and might therefore depend on the structure and mechanical properties of the original continental crust. For the Mediterranean margin pair, the oceanic crust is similar on both sides, with a thickness of only 4-5 km. For the Atlantic margin pair, oceanic crustal thickness is higher on the Moroccan Margin, a fact that can be explained by either asymmetric spreading or by the volcanic underplating, possibly originating from the Canary Hot Spot.

  1. El Hierro's floating stones as messengers of crust-magma interaction at depth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burchardt, S.; Troll, V. R.; Schmeling, H.; Koyi, H.; Blythe, L. S.; Longpré, M. A.; Deegan, F. M.

    2012-04-01

    During the early stages of the submarine eruption that started on October 10 2011 south of El Hierro, Canary Islands, Spain, peculiar eruption products were found floating on the sea surface. These centimetre- to decimetre-sized "bombs" have been termed "restingolites" after the nearby village La Restinga and consist of a basaltic rind and a white to light grey core that resembles pumice in texture. According to Troll et al. (2011; see also Troll et al. EGU 2012 Abstracts), this material consists of a glassy matrix hosting extensive vesicle networks, which results in extremely low densities allowing these rocks to float on sea water. Mineralogical and geochemical analyses reveal that the "restingolites" originate from the sedimentary rocks (sand-, silt-, and mudstones) that form layer 1 of the oceanic crust beneath El Hierro. During the onset and early stages of the eruption, magma ponded at the base of this sedimentary sequence, breaking its way through the sedimentary rocks to the ocean floor. The textures of the "restingolites" reveal that crust-magma interaction during fragmentation and transport of the xenoliths involved rapid partial melting and volatile exsolution. Xenoliths strikingly similar to those from El Hierro are known from eruptions on other Canary Islands (e.g. La Palma, Gran Canaria, and Lanzarote). In fact, they resemble in texture xenoliths of various protoliths from volcanic areas worldwide (e.g. Krakatao, Indonesia, Cerro Quemado, Guatemala, Laacher See, Germany). This indicates that the process of partial melting and volatile exsolution, which the "restingolites" bear witness of, is probably occurring frequently during shallow crustal magma emplacement. Thermomechanical numerical models of the effect of the density decrease associated with the formation of vesicle networks in partially molten xenoliths show that xenoliths of crustal rocks initially sink in a magma chamber, but may start to float to the chamber roof once they start to heat up

  2. Collisional stripping of planetary crusts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carter, Philip J.; Leinhardt, Zoë M.; Elliott, Tim; Stewart, Sarah T.; Walter, Michael J.

    2018-02-01

    Geochemical studies of planetary accretion and evolution have invoked various degrees of collisional erosion to explain differences in bulk composition between planets and chondrites. Here we undertake a full, dynamical evaluation of 'crustal stripping' during accretion and its key geochemical consequences. Crusts are expected to contain a significant fraction of planetary budgets of incompatible elements, which include the major heat producing nuclides. We present smoothed particle hydrodynamics simulations of collisions between differentiated rocky planetesimals and planetary embryos. We find that the crust is preferentially lost relative to the mantle during impacts, and we have developed a scaling law based on these simulations that approximates the mass of crust that remains in the largest remnant. Using this scaling law and a recent set of N-body simulations of terrestrial planet formation, we have estimated the maximum effect of crustal stripping on incompatible element abundances during the accretion of planetary embryos. We find that on average approximately one third of the initial crust is stripped from embryos as they accrete, which leads to a reduction of ∼20% in the budgets of the heat producing elements if the stripped crust does not reaccrete. Erosion of crusts can lead to non-chondritic ratios of incompatible elements, but the magnitude of this effect depends sensitively on the details of the crust-forming melting process on the planetesimals. The Lu/Hf system is fractionated for a wide range of crustal formation scenarios. Using eucrites (the products of planetesimal silicate melting, thought to represent the crust of Vesta) as a guide to the Lu/Hf of planetesimal crust partially lost during accretion, we predict the Earth could evolve to a superchondritic 176Hf/177Hf (3-5 parts per ten thousand) at present day. Such values are in keeping with compositional estimates of the bulk Earth. Stripping of planetary crusts during accretion can lead to

  3. Quantitative tectonic reconstructions of Zealandia based on crustal thickness estimates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grobys, Jan W. G.; Gohl, Karsten; Eagles, Graeme

    2008-01-01

    Zealandia is a key piece in the plate reconstruction of Gondwana. The positions of its submarine plateaus are major constraints on the best fit and breakup involving New Zealand, Australia, Antarctica, and associated microplates. As the submarine plateaus surrounding New Zealand consist of extended and highly extended continental crust, classic plate tectonic reconstructions assuming rigid plates and narrow plate boundaries fail to reconstruct these areas correctly. However, if the early breakup history shall be reconstructed, it is crucial to consider crustal stretching in a plate-tectonic reconstruction. We present a reconstruction of the basins around New Zealand (Great South Basin, Bounty Trough, and New Caledonia Basin) based on crustal balancing, an approach that takes into account the rifting and thinning processes affecting continental crust. In a first step, we computed a crustal thickness map of Zealandia using seismic, seismological, and gravity data. The crustal thickness map shows the submarine plateaus to have a uniform crustal thickness of 20-24 km and the basins to have a thickness of 12-16 km. We assumed that a reconstruction of Zealandia should close the basins and lead to a most uniform crustal thickness. We used the standard deviation of the reconstructed crustal thickness as a measure of uniformity. The reconstruction of the Campbell Plateau area shows that the amount of extension in the Bounty Trough and the Great South Basin is far smaller than previously thought. Our results indicate that the extension of the Bounty Trough and Great South Basin occurred simultaneously.

  4. Tidal dissipation in the subsurface ocean of Enceladus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matsuyama, I.; Hay, H.; Nimmo, F.; Kamata, S.

    2017-12-01

    Icy satellites of the outer solar system have emerged as potential habitable worlds due to the presence of subsurface oceans. As a long-term energy source, tidal heating in these oceans can influence the survivability of subsurface oceans, and the thermal, rotational, and orbital evolution of these satellites. Additionally, the spatial and temporal variation of tidal heating has implications for the interior structure and spacecraft observations. Previous models for dissipation in thin oceans are not generally applicable to icy satellites because either they ignore the presence of an overlying solid shell or use a thin shell membrane approximation. We present a new theoretical treatment for tidal dissipation in thin oceans with overlying shells of arbitrary thickness and apply it to Enceladus. The shell's resistance to ocean tides increases with shell thickness, reducing tidal dissipation as expected. Both the magnitude of energy dissipation and the resonant ocean thicknesses decrease as the overlying shell thickness increases, as previously shown using a membrane approximation. In contrast to previous work based on the traditional definition of the tidal quality factor, Q, our new definition is consistent with higher energy dissipation for smaller Q, and introduces a lower limit on Q. The dissipated power and tides are not in phase with the forcing tidal potential due to the delayed ocean response. The phase lag depends on the Rayleigh friction coefficient and ocean and shell thicknesses, which implies that phase lag observations can be used to constrain these parameters. Eccentricity heating produces higher dissipation near the poles, while obliquity heating produces higher dissipation near the equator, in contrast to the dissipation patterns in the shell. The time-averaged surface distribution of tidal heating can generate lateral shell thickness variations, providing an additional constraint on the Rayleigh friction coefficient. Explaining the endogenic power

  5. Thermal Coupling Between the Ocean and Mantle of Europa: Implications for Ocean Convection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soderlund, Krista M.; Schmidt, Britney E.; Wicht, Johannes; Blankenship, Donald D.

    2015-11-01

    Magnetic induction signatures at Europa indicate the presence of a subsurface ocean beneath the cold icy crust. The underlying mantle is heated by radioactive decay and tidal dissipation, leading to a thermal contrast sufficient to drive convection and active dynamics within the ocean. Radiogenic heat sources may be distributed uniformly in the interior, while tidal heating varies spatially with a pattern that depends on whether eccentricity or obliquity tides are dominant. The distribution of mantle heat flow along the seafloor may therefore be heterogeneous and impact the regional vigor of ocean convection. Here, we use numerical simulations of thermal convection in a global, Europa-like ocean to test the sensitivity of ocean dynamics to variations in mantle heat flow patterns. Towards this end, three end-member cases are considered: an isothermal seafloor associated with dominant radiogenic heating, enhanced seafloor temperatures at high latitudes associated with eccentricity tides, and enhanced equatorial seafloor temperatures associated with obliquity tides. Our analyses will focus on convective heat transfer since the heat flux pattern along the ice-ocean interface can directly impact the ice shell and the potential for geologic activity within it.

  6. Geochemical and lead isotope evidence for a mid-ocean ridge type mineralization within a polymetamorphic ophiolite complex (Monte del Forno, North Italy/Switzerland)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Peretti, A; Koeppel, V

    1986-11-01

    Major, trace element and Pb isotope investigations show the presence of a mid-ocean ridge-type mineralization within the polymetamorphic Monte del Forno Unit. Detailed analysis of the lithostratigraphy of the amphibolites demonstrates a close similarity to recent oceanic crust: a dyke zone at the bottom, a hydrothermally altered zone with a stockwork-type Fe-Cu-Zn mineralization and a pillow zone at the top. Effects of hydrothermal seafloor alteration are restricted to an approximately 50 m thick horizon. Sulfide mineralization is accompanied by Ca and Sr depletion and Mn and minor Na and Mg enrichments. Mineralogically the horizon distinguishes itself from the unmineralized amphibolites by the presence of chlorite and contact metamorphic magnesio-cummingtonite. The chemical imprint of the hydrothermal seafloor alteration survived a regional greenschist and an upper amphibolite facies contact metamorphism. The MORB signature of the Pb isotopes is preserved in the central parts of the approximately 300 m thick amphibolite sequence. During the regional greenschist facies metamorphism the isotope characteristics of the amphibolites were almost completely changed at the contact to the metasediments. The contact metamorphism of the Bregaglia Intrusion produced no obvious Pb contamination even within amphibolite xenoliths in the granodiorite.

  7. Tectonic History and Deep Structure of the Demerara Plateau from Combined Wide-Angle and Reflection Seismic Data and Plate Kinematic Reconstructions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klingelhoefer, F.; Museur, T.; Roest, W. R.; Graindorge, D.; Chauvet, F.; Loncke, L.; Basile, C.; Poetisi, E.; Deverchere, J.; Lebrun, J. F.; Perrot, J.; Heuret, A.

    2017-12-01

    Many transform margins have associated intermediate depth marginal plateaus, which are commonly located between two oceanic basins. The Demerara plateau is located offshore Surinam and French Guiana. Plate kinematic reconstructions show that the plateau is located between the central and equatorial Atlantic in a position conjugate to the Guinean Plateau. In the fall of 2016, the MARGATS cruise acquired geophysical data along the 400 km wide Demerara plateau. The main objective of the cruise was to image the deep structure of the Demerara plateau and to study its tectonic history. A set of 4 combined wide-angle and reflection seismic profiles was acquired along the plateau, using 80 ocean-bottom seismometers, a 3 km long seismic streamer and a 8000 cu inch tuned airgun array. Forward modelling of the wide-angle seismic data on a profile, located in the eastern part of the plateau and oriented in a NE-SW direction, images the crustal structure of the plateau, the transition zone and the neighbouring crust of oceanic origin, up to a depth of 40 km. The plateau itself is characterised by a crust of 30 km thickness, subdivided into three distinct layers. However, the velocities and velocity gradients do not fit typical continental crust, with a lower crustal layer showing untypically high velocities and an upper layer having a steep velocity gradient. From this model we propose that the lowermost layer is probably formed from volcanic underplated material and that the upper crustal layer likely consists of the corresponding extrusive volcanic material, forming thick seaward-dipping reflector sequences on the plateau. A basement high is imaged at the foot of the slope and forms the ocean-continent transition zone. Further oceanward, a 5-6 km thick crust is imaged with velocities and velocity gradients corresponding to a thin oceanic crust. A compilation of magnetic data from the MARGATS and 3 previous cruises shows a high amplitude magnetic anomaly along the northern

  8. Circum-Pacific accretion of oceanic terranes to continental blocks: accretion of the Early Permian Dun Mountain ophiolite to the E Gondwana continental margin, South Island, New Zealand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robertson, Alastair

    2016-04-01

    Accretionary orogens, in part, grow as a result of the accretion of oceanic terranes to pre-existing continental blocks, as in the circum-Pacific and central Asian regions. However, the accretionary processes involved remain poorly understood. Here, we consider settings in which oceanic crust formed in a supra-subduction zone setting and later accreted to continental terranes (some, themselves of accretionary origin). Good examples include some Late Cretaceous ophiolites in SE Turkey, the Jurassic Coast Range ophiolite, W USA and the Early Permian Dun Mountain ophiolite of South Island, New Zealand. In the last two cases, the ophiolites are depositionally overlain by coarse clastic sedimentary rocks (e.g. Permian Upukerora Formation of South Island, NZ) that then pass upwards into very thick continental margin fore-arc basin sequences (Great Valley sequence, California; Matai sequence, South Island, NZ). Field observations, together with petrographical and geochemical studies in South Island, NZ, summarised here, provide evidence of terrane accretion processes. In a proposed tectonic model, the Early Permian Dun Mountain ophiolite was created by supra-subduction zone spreading above a W-dipping subduction zone (comparable to the present-day Izu-Bonin arc and fore arc, W Pacific). The SSZ oceanic crust in the New Zealand example is inferred to have included an intra-oceanic magmatic arc, which is no longer exposed (other than within a melange unit in Southland), but which is documented by petrographic and geochemical evidence. An additional subduction zone is likely to have dipped westwards beneath the E Gondwana margin during the Permian. As a result, relatively buoyant Early Permian supra-subduction zone oceanic crust was able to dock with the E Gondwana continental margin, terminating intra-oceanic subduction (although the exact timing is debatable). The amalgamation ('soft collision') was accompanied by crustal extension of the newly accreted oceanic slab, and

  9. Araxa Group in the type-area: A fragment of Neoproterozoic oceanic crust in the Brasilia Fold Belt

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Seer, Hildor Jose; Brod, Jose Affonso; Fuck, Reinhardt Adolfo; Pimentel, Marcio Martins; Boaventura, Geraldo Resende; Dardenne, Marcel Auguste

    2001-01-01

    This study reviews the geological characteristics and puts forward a new evolution model for the Araxa Group in its type-area, the southern segment of the Neo proterozoic Brasilia Belt, Minas Gerais, Brazil. The Araxa Group is confined within a thrust sheet belonging to a syn formal regional fold, the Araxa Syn form, overlying two other thrust sheets made of the Ibia and Canastra Groups. The Araxa Group is described as a tectono stratigraphic terrane in the sense of Howell (1993). It comprises an igneous mafic sequence, with fine and coarse grained amphibolites, associated with pelitic meta sedimentary rocks, and subordinate psanmites. All rocks were metamorphosed to amphibolite facies at ca. 630 Ma ago and were intruded by collisional granites. The amphibolites represent original basaltic and gabbroic rocks, with minor ultramafic (serpentinite/ amphibole-talc schist). The basalts are similar to high Fe O tholeiites, with REE signatures that resemble E-MORB and ε Nd(T) =+ 1.1. The meta sedimentary rocks are interpreted as the result of a marine deep-water sedimentation. They have Sm-Nd model ages of 1,9 Ga, and ε Nd(T) = -10.21. The amphibolites and metasediments could represent a fragment of back-arc oceanic crust. The data presented here differ significantly from the original definition of Barbosa et al. (1970) who describe the Araxa Group as a pelitic/psanmitic sequence and the collisional granites as a basement complex. (author)

  10. Corium crust strength measurements

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lomperski, S. [Argonne National Laboratory, 9700 S. Cass Avenue, Argonne, IL 60439-4840 (United States)], E-mail: lomperski@anl.gov; Farmer, M.T. [Argonne National Laboratory, 9700 S. Cass Avenue, Argonne, IL 60439-4840 (United States)], E-mail: farmer@anl.gov

    2009-11-15

    Corium strength is of interest in the context of a severe reactor accident in which molten core material melts through the reactor vessel and collects on the containment basemat. Some accident management strategies involve pouring water over the melt to solidify it and halt corium/concrete interactions. The effectiveness of this method could be influenced by the strength of the corium crust at the interface between the melt and coolant. A strong, coherent crust anchored to the containment walls could allow the yet-molten corium to fall away from the crust as it erodes the basemat, thereby thermally decoupling the melt from the coolant and sharply reducing the cooling rate. This paper presents a diverse collection of measurements of the mechanical strength of corium. The data is based on load tests of corium samples in three different contexts: (1) small blocks cut from the debris of the large-scale MACE experiments, (2) 30 cm-diameter, 75 kg ingots produced by SSWICS quench tests, and (3) high temperature crusts loaded during large-scale corium/concrete interaction (CCI) tests. In every case the corium consisted of varying proportions of UO{sub 2}, ZrO{sub 2}, and the constituents of concrete to represent a LWR melt at different stages of a molten core/concrete interaction. The collection of data was used to assess the strength and stability of an anchored, plant-scale crust. The results indicate that such a crust is likely to be too weak to support itself above the melt. It is therefore improbable that an anchored crust configuration could persist and the melt become thermally decoupled from the water layer to restrict cooling and prolong an attack of the reactor cavity concrete.

  11. Low-pressure evolution of arc magmas in thickened crust: The San Pedro-Linzor volcanic chain, Central Andes, Northern Chile

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godoy, Benigno; Wörner, Gerhard; Kojima, Shoji; Aguilera, Felipe; Simon, Klaus; Hartmann, Gerald

    2014-07-01

    Magmatism at Andean Central Volcanic Zone (CVZ), or Central Andes, is strongly influenced by differentiation and assimilation at high pressures that occurred at lower levels of the thick continental crust. This is typically shown by high light to heavy rare earth element ratios (LREE/HREE) of the erupted lavas at this volcanic zone. Increase of these ratios with time is interpreted as a change to magma evolution in the presence of garnet during evolution of Central Andes. Such geochemical signals could be introduced into the magmas be high-pressure fractionation with garnet on the liquidus and/or assimilation from crustal rocks with a garnet-bearing residue. However, lavas erupted at San Pedro-Linzor volcanic chain show no evidence of garnet fractionation in their trace element patterns. This volcanic chain is located in the active volcanic arc, between 22°00‧S and 22°30‧S, over a continental crust ˜70 km thick. Sampled lavas show Sr/Y and Sm/Yb ratios Chile. We relate our geochemical observations to shallow crustal evolution of primitive magmas involving a high degree of assimilation of upper continental crust. We emphasize that low pressure AFC- (Assimilation Fractional Crystallization) type evolution of the San Pedro-Linzor volcanic chain reflects storage, fractionation, and contamination of mantle-derived magmas at the upper felsic crust (<40 km depth). The ascent of mantle-derived magmas to mid-crustal levels is related with the extensional regime that has existed in this zone of arc-front offset since Late-Miocene age, and the relatively thin portion of mafic lower crust observed below the volcanic chain.

  12. Magnetic anomalies across the transitional crust of the passive conjugate margins of the North Atlantic: Iberian Abyssal Plain/Northern Newfoundland Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Srivastava, S.; Sibuet, J.; Manatschal, G.

    2005-12-01

    The magma starved Iberia Abyssal Plain (IAP) margin off Iberia is probably one of the most studied non-volcanic continental margin in the world. Numerous multi-channel seismic cruises, detailed refraction surveys, and ODP drilling (Legs 149 and 173) have been carried out across it. Yet serious disagreement exists about the nature and mode of emplacement of the transitional crust which lies between true continental and true oceanic crusts in this region. One group regards this crust to be excessively thinned continental crust through which mantle was exhumed while the other group regards it to be oceanic crust, a mixture of basalt and mantle material, formed during ultraslow seafloor spreading. However, neither the drilling, which was carried out only on the basement highs and recovered serpentinized peridotites together with some gabbroic material, nor the detailed refraction measurements have been of much help in solving this dispute because the velocity values in this region neither correspond to true volcanic materials nor to true continental rocks. Similarly the magnetic anomalies in this region have been also interpreted differently by the two groups. One group negates the existence of any seafloor spreading type anomalies over the transition zone. On the other hand, examination of surface and deep-tow magnetic data from conjugate sections of the margins across this part of the North Atlantic shows a good correlation between them. The prime reason for such differences in the interpretation of magnetic data lies in the low amplitude of the surface magnetic anomalies forming the M sequence anomalies in this region compared to those of similar age present in the Central Atlantic. We demonstrate here that the symmetrical magnetic anomalies identified within the transitional zones between Iberia and North America, and across passive margins in general where separation between plates has been very slow, are caused by the serpentinization of the exhumed mantle rocks

  13. Shyok Suture Zone, N Pakistan: late Mesozoic Tertiary evolution of a critical suture separating the oceanic Ladakh Arc from the Asian continental margin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robertson, Alastair H. F.; Collins, Alan S.

    2002-02-01

    The Shyok Suture Zone (Northern Suture) of North Pakistan is an important Cretaceous-Tertiary suture separating the Asian continent (Karakoram) from the Cretaceous Kohistan-Ladakh oceanic arc to the south. In previously published interpretations, the Shyok Suture Zone marks either the site of subduction of a wide Tethyan ocean, or represents an Early Cretaceous intra-continental marginal basin along the southern margin of Asia. To shed light on alternative hypotheses, a sedimentological, structural and igneous geochemical study was made of a well-exposed traverse in North Pakistan, in the Skardu area (Baltistan). To the south of the Shyok Suture Zone in this area is the Ladakh Arc and its Late Cretaceous, mainly volcanogenic, sedimentary cover (Burje-La Formation). The Shyok Suture Zone extends northwards (ca. 30 km) to the late Tertiary Main Karakoram Thrust that transported Asian, mainly high-grade metamorphic rocks southwards over the suture zone. The Shyok Suture Zone is dominated by four contrasting units separated by thrusts, as follows: (1). The lowermost, Askore amphibolite, is mainly amphibolite facies meta-basites and turbiditic meta-sediments interpreted as early marginal basin rift products, or trapped Tethyan oceanic crust, metamorphosed during later arc rifting. (2). The overlying Pakora Formation is a very thick (ca. 7 km in outcrop) succession of greenschist facies volcaniclastic sandstones, redeposited limestones and subordinate basaltic-andesitic extrusives and flow breccias of at least partly Early Cretaceous age. The Pakora Formation lacks terrigenous continental detritus and is interpreted as a proximal base-of-slope apron related to rifting of the oceanic Ladakh Arc; (3). The Tectonic Melange (ocean ridge-type volcanics and recrystallised radiolarian cherts, interpreted as accreted oceanic crust. (4). The Bauma-Harel Group (structurally highest) is a thick succession (several km) of Ordovician and Carboniferous to Permian-Triassic, low

  14. Measurements of diffusive sublayer thicknesses in the ocean by alabaster dissolution, and their implications for the measurements of benthic fluxes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santschi, Peter H.; Anderson, Robert F.; Fleisher, Martin Q.; Bowles, Walter

    1991-06-01

    Fluxes of reactive chemical species across the sediment-water interface can profoundly influence the dominant biogeochemical cycles in the worlds ocean. However, reliable in-situ measurements of benthic fluxes of many reactive species cannot be carried out without adjustment of stirring rates inside benthic flux chambers to match boundary layer conditions prevailing outside. A simple method to compare flow levels consists of measurements of gypsum dissolution rates inside benthic chambers and on the seafloor. The measurement of the diffusion-controlled dissolution rate of gypsum allows the estimation of the diffusive sublayer thickness and the time-averaged bottom stress on the seafloor. This method had previously been intercalibrated with the stress sensor method in flumes and inside benthic chambers. We describe here free-vehicle deployments of alabaster plates on the bottom of the ocean which gave results consistent with hydrodynamic theory. Errors in the calculated diffusive sublayer thicknesses were estimated to be about 10-15% for typical deployment conditions in the ocean. Current velocities 5 m off the bottom, which were measured concurrently during two deployments, allowed for comparisons with hydrodynamic predictions of diffusive sublayer thicknesses. The values obtained this way agreed within 15%. The measured mass transfer velocity was found to correlate with the plate dimension L, to the power of ⅓. This confirms the theoretical procedure for extrapolating to infinite plate size when calculating the sublayer impedance of solute fluxes from sediments (where L is large). Typical values of diffusive sublayer thicknesses, corrected to infinite plate size, were 1200 μm for current velocities, U100, of 2 cm s-1, and 500 μm at 8 cm s-1. Furthermore, values of friction velocities calculated from alabaster dissolution were compared with those using stress sensors. Gypsum plate values of u* were 0 and 30% lower than skin friction values of u*, at u* values

  15. Qinghai-Tibet Plateau crustal thickness derived from EGM2008 and CRSUT2.0

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhou Hao

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Qinghai-Tibet Plateau is the most complex region for crustal thickness inversion, while high-resolution earth gravity model (EGM makes it possible to obtain high precision gravity anomaly, which is a key parameter to depict the Earth’s inner structure in geodesy domain. On the basis of this principle, we calculated the Bouguer gravity anomalies in Qinghai-Tibet Plateau with EGM2008 and SRTM6. 0 by efficient high-degree spherical harmonic synthesis algorithm. In order to obtain the gravity anomaly caused by Moho density mutant, the noises caused by the topography was removed by wavelet details. Then, the crustal thickness was corrected on the basis of CRUST 2. 0 with the deep-large-scale single density interface formula. The inversion result indicates that the crustal thickness in Qinghai-Tibet Plateau is between 50 km and 75 km, which is in correspondence with the recent science research result. Compared with the 2 degree CRUST 2. 0 model, the spatial resolution of crustal thickness in our research can reach 40 arc minutes. In addition, there is a positive relationship between the inversed crustal thickness and topography, which can prove the effectiveness of Airy-Heiskanen isostatic model in gravity reduction.

  16. Influence of mid-crustal rheology on the deformation behavior of continental crust in the continental subduction zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Fucheng; Sun, Zhen; Zhang, Jiangyang

    2018-06-01

    Although the presence of low-viscosity middle crustal layer in the continental crust has been detected by both geophysical and geochemical studies, its influence on the deformation behavior of continental crust during subduction remains poorly investigated. To illustrate the crustal deformation associated with layered crust during continental subduction, we conducted a suite of 2-D thermo-mechanical numerical studies with visco-brittle/plastic rheology based on finite-differences and marker-in-cell techniques. In the experiments, we established a three-layer crustal model with a quartz-rich middle crustal layer embedded between the upper and lower continental crust. Results show that the middle crustal layer determines the amount of the accreted upper crust, maximum subduction depth, and exhumation path of the subducted upper crust. By varying the initial effective viscosity and thickness of the middle crustal layer, the further effects can be summarized as: (1) a rheologically weaker and/or thicker middle crustal layer results in a larger percentage of the upper crust detaching from the underlying slab and accreting at the trench zone, thereby leading to more serious crustal deformation. The rest of the upper crust only subducts into the depths of high pressure (HP) conditions, causing the absence of ultra-high pressure (UHP) metamorphic rocks; (2) a rheologically stronger and/or thinner middle crustal layer favors the stable subduction of the continental crust, dragging the upper crust to a maximum depth of ∼100 km and forming UHP rocks; (3) the middle crustal layer flows in a ductile way and acts as an exhumation channel for the HP-UHP rocks in both situations. In addition, the higher convergence velocity decreases the amount of subducted upper crust. A detailed comparison of our modeling results with the Himalayan collisional belt are conducted. Our work suggests that the presence of low-viscosity middle crustal layer may be another possible mechanism for

  17. Magmatic Diversity of the Wehrlitic Intrusions in the Oceanic Lower Crust of the Northern Oman Ophiolite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaneko, R.; Adachi, Y.; Miyashita, S.

    2014-12-01

    The Oman ophiolite extends along the east coast of Oman, and is the world's largest and best-preserved slice of obducted oceanic lithosphere. The magmatic history of this ophiolite is complex and is generally regarded as having occurred in three stages (MOR magmatism, subduction magmatism and intraplate magmatism). Wehrlitic intrusions constitute an important element of oceanic lower crust of the ophiolite, and numerous intrusions cut gabbro units in the northern Salahi block of this ophiolite. In this study area, we identified two different types of wehrlitic intrusions. One type of the intrusions mainly consists of dunite, plagioclase (Pl) wehrlite and mela-olivine (Ol) gabbro, in which the crystallization sequence is Ol followed by the contemporaneous crystallization of Pl and clinopyroxene (Cpx). This type is called "ordinary" wehrlitic intrusions and has similar mineral compositions to host gabbros (Adachi and Miyashita 2003; Kaneko et al. 2014). Another type of the intrusions is a single intrusion that crops out in an area 250 m × 150 m along Wadi Salahi. This intrusion consists of Pl-free "true" wehrlite, in which the crystallization sequence is Ol and then Cpx. The forsterite contents (Fo%) of Ol from the "ordinary" wehrlitic intrusions and "true" wehrlitic intrusions have ranges of 90.8-87.0 (NiO = 0.36-0.13 wt%) and 84.7 (NiO = 0.31 wt%), respectively. Cr numbers (Cr#) of Cr-spinel from the "true" wehrlitic intrusions show higher Cr# value of 0.85 than those of the "ordinary" wehrlitic intrusions (0.48-0.64). But the former is characterized by very high Fe3+ values (YFe3+ = 0.49-0.68). Kaneko et al. (2014) showed that the "ordinary" ubiquitous type has similar features to MOR magmatism and the depleted type in the Fizh block (Adachi and Miyashita 2003) links to subduction magmatism. These types are distinguished by their mineral chemistries (TiO2 and Na2O contents of Cpx). The TiO2 and Na2O contents of Cpx from the "true" wehrlitic intrusions have 0

  18. Seismic studies of crustal structure and tectonic evolution across the central California margin and the Colorado Plateau margin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howie, John Mark

    This thesis presents results from two integrated deep-crustal seismic-reflection and wide-angle-reflection/refraction studies that improve our understanding of crustal structure and tectonic evolution in two tectonically active areas of the western United States. A multi-faceted approach to the study of crustal structure includes the use of compressional and shear wave seismic data. Supplementing the controlled source seismic observations with seismicity, gravity, heat flow, laboratory measurements and available geologic information allows a much improved understanding of crustal structure and tectonic evolution than would be available from the seismic data alone. Chapter 1 introduces the data integration strategy applied to the studies completed. In Chapter 2, an integrated crustal-velocity model across the south-central California margin west of the San Adreas fault is presented. The crustal structure defines tectonostratigraphic terranes 15 to 20 km thick underlain by a 6-km-thick high-velocity layer (6.8-7.0 km/s) interpreted as tectonically underplated oceanic crust. Structures defined in the oceanic crust indicate significant compressional and strike-slip deformation within the oceanic crust that probably formed during the final stages of subduction from 24-16 Ma. In Chapter 3, the crustal model from Chapter 2 is used as a constraint for models of the tectonic evolution of the Pacific-North American transform plate boundary. By combining the crustal structure with thermal models for asthenospheric upwelling associated with a slab-free window, I find that the mantle lithosphere east of the coast beneath south-central California probably delaminated from the oceanic crust, stranding the oceanic crust beneath the margin. In Chapter 4, results from a high-resolution reflection experiment in central Arizona across the southwestern edge of the Colorado Plateau address the relationship between strength of the crust and localization of extensional tectonism. A low

  19. Lithium in Jack Hills zircons: Evidence for extensive weathering of Earth's earliest crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ushikubo, Takayuki; Kita, Noriko T.; Cavosie, Aaron J.; Wilde, Simon A.; Rudnick, Roberta L.; Valley, John W.

    2008-08-01

    In situ Li analyses of 4348 to 3362 Ma detrital zircons from the Jack Hills, Western Australia by SIMS reveal that the Li abundances (typically 10 to 60 ppm) are commonly over 10,000 times higher than in zircons crystallized from mantle-derived magmas and in mantle-derived zircon megacrysts (typically Jack Hills zircons also have fractionated lithium isotope ratios ( δ7Li = - 19 to + 13‰) about five times more variable than those recorded in primitive ocean floor basalts (2 to 8‰), but similar to continental crust and its weathering products. Values of δ7Li below - 10‰ are found in zircons that formed as early as 4300 Ma. The high Li compositions indicate that primitive magmas were not the source of Jack Hills zircons and the fractionated values of δ7Li suggest that highly weathered regolith was sampled by these early Archean magmas. These new Li data provide evidence that the parent magmas of ancient zircons from Jack Hills incorporated materials from the surface of the Earth that interacted at low temperature with liquid water. These data support the hypothesis that continental-type crust and oceans existed by 4300 Ma, within 250 million years of the formation of Earth and the low values of δ7Li suggest that weathering was extensive in the early Archean.

  20. A study regarding the stability of the primordial crust of asteroid Ceres

    Science.gov (United States)

    Formisano, Michelangelo; Federico, Costanzo; De Sanctis, Maria Cristina; De Angelis, Simone

    2016-04-01

    Ceres is a particular object of the solar system, since it is a "transition body" between the icy satellites of the outer solar system and the rocky bodies of the inner part. Probably it is differentiated [1,2], i.e. it has a core made of "rock" (silicates) with a weak presence of metals, a large icy mantle and a rocky crust. In particular, it has been proposed the existence on the surface of the ammoniated phyllosilicates, compatible with an outer solar system origin [3]. Also water in clay minerals, brucite, and iron-rich serpentine have been proposed to exist on the surface [4]. Ice directly on the surface regolith seems to be very unstable: numerical simulations of [5] indicate that it can last for very few orbits. A crust made of a mixture of ice and rock is potentially unstable. In the solar system, for example, Callisto has such a crust but its surface temperature is below the critical temperature for the Rayleigh-Taylor instability [6]: this seems not to be the case of Ceres. In this work, we verify the stability of the primordial crust, by assuming a certain initial composition (ice and rock) and thickness. We assume a post-differentiation Ceres, made of three layers (rocky core, icy mantle and crust). The key role is played by the viscosity of the layers, which influenced the survival or not of the primordial crust. We applied the method of the parametrized thermal convection widely diffused in literature. [1] McCord, T.B. and Sotin, C., 2005, JGR 110 [2] Castillo-Rogez, J.C., and McCord, T.B., 2010, Icarus 205, 443-459 [3] De Sanctis, M.C. et al., 2015, doi:10.1038/nature16172 [4] Rivkin, A.S., et al., 2014, Space Sci Rev, 95-116, 163, doi 10.1007/s11214-010-9677-4 [5] Formisano, M., et al., 2016, MRAS 455, 1892-1904 [6] Shoji, D. and Kurita, K., 2014, doi:10.1002/2014JE004695.

  1. Variable crustal thickness beneath Thwaites Glacier revealed from airborne gravimetry, possible implications for geothermal heat flux in West Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Damiani, Theresa M.; Jordan, Tom A.; Ferraccioli, Fausto; Young, Duncan A.; Blankenship, Donald D.

    2014-12-01

    Thwaites Glacier has one of the largest glacial catchments in West Antarctica. The future stability of Thwaites Glacier's catchment is of great concern, as this part of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet has recently been hypothesized to already be en route towards collapse. Although an oceanic trigger is thought to be responsible for current change at the grounding line of Thwaites Glacier, in order to determine the effects of this coastal change further in the interior of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet it is essential to also better constrain basal conditions that control the dynamics of fast glacial flow within the catchment itself. One major contributor to fast glacial flow is the presence of subglacial water, the production of which is a result of both glaciological shear heating and geothermal heat flux. The primary goal of our study is to investigate the crustal thickness beneath Thwaites Glacier, which is an important contributor to regional-scale geothermal heat flux patterns. Crustal structure is an indicator of past tectonic events and hence provides a geophysical proxy for the thermal status of the crust and mantle. Terrain-corrected Bouguer gravity disturbances are used here to estimate depths to the Moho and mid-crustal boundary. The thin continental crust we reveal beneath Thwaites Glacier supports the hypothesis that the West Antarctic Rift System underlies the region and is expressed topographically as the Byrd Subglacial Basin. This rifted crust is of similar thickness to that calculated from airborne gravity data beneath neighboring Pine Island Glacier, and is more extended than crust in the adjacent Siple Coast sector of the Ross Sea Embayment. A zone of thinner crust is also identified near the area's subaerial volcanoes lending support to a recent interpretation predicting that this part of Marie Byrd Land is a major volcanic dome, likely within the West Antarctic Rift System itself. Near-zero Bouguer gravity disturbances for the subglacial highlands

  2. Evidence for Slab Melt Contributions to the Mexican Volcanic Belt and Other Young Hot Slab Arcs from Lu-Hf Isotopes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldstein, S. L.; Cai, Y. M.; Langmuir, C. H.; Lagatta, A.; Straub, S. M.; Gomez-Tuena, A.; Martin Del Pozzo, A.

    2007-12-01

    Despite major advances in delineating the processes that govern magma generation at convergent margins, the problem persists of distinguishing slab, mantle wedge, and crustal contributions. A corrollary question is whether there is significant melting of subducted ocean crust. Especially in thick crust regions, the importance of crustal versus mantle contributions to lavas represents a long-standing fundamental issue in arc magma geochemistry. We show that frontal arc magmas from the Central Mexican Volcanic Belt (CMVB), including the large andesitic stratovolcanoes Popocatepetl and Nevado de Toluca, display negligible crustal contamination, and contain substantial contributions from melting of subducted Pacific ocean crust. Despite ca. 50 km thick continental crust, the CMVB erupts near primitive lavas including "high-Nb" alkaline basalts that show negligible "subduction signatures" in their trace element patterns. These "high-Nb" basalts define the regional mantle wedge composition in isotope-trace element space. The "normal" calcalkaline lavas form a negative correlation between Hf isotopes and Lu/Hf. One endmember is like the high Nb basalts representing the regional mantle wedge. The other endmember has higher Hf isotopes (approaching values of Pacific MORB) and very low Lu/Hf of less than 0.04 (e.g. compared to typical values of ca. 0.2 in Pacific MORB). The low Lu/Hf values require low degree partial melting of a source rich in garnet. The high Hf isotopes require a depleted mantle source with isotopes like Pacific MORB. Together the Lu-Hf data indicate a substantial component derived from melting of eclogitic Pacific ocean crust. A key feature of the data is that the stratovolcano lavas showing the largest slab melt signature also show the highest Hf isotope ratios and thus are more "depleted mantle-like" than the regional mantle wedge. Thus, the integrated data allow us to clearly distinguish between mantle and crustal sources in the CMVB and point to

  3. GRAVITY ANOMALIES OF THE CRUST AND UPPER MANTLE FOR CENTRAL AND SOUTH ASIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. N. Senachin

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Studying the density of both the crust and mantle is one of the topical problems in modern geophysics. Gravity modeling in combination with seismic tomography is an important tool for detecting density inhomogeneities in the crust and mantle, which can cause stresses and thus significantly impact the regional tectonics [Pogorelov, Baranov, 2010], especially in zones wherein continental margins actively interact with subducting oceanic plates and the entire depth of the tectonosphere is subject to stresses. Associated processes lead to considerable horizontal and vertical stresses that often cause catastrophic events on a global scale. The challenge of studying the global tectonic processes in the Earth’s tectonosphere can be addressed by gravity modeling in combination with seismic surveying.Data from previous studies. I.L. Nersesov et al. [1975] pioneered in calculating the spatial pattern of mantle density inhomogeneities in Central Asia. Although the accuracy of their estimations was not high due to the limited database, their study yielded significant results considering the structure of the crust. Numerous subsequent geophysical projects have researched the crust to a level sufficient to develop regional models, that can give quite adequate information on the depths of external and internal boundaries of the crust and suggest the distribution patterns of seismic velocities and density values. With reference to such data, mantle density inhomogeneities can be studied with higher accuracy.This paper reports on the estimations of gravity anomalies in the crust and upper mantle in Central and South Asia. The study region represents the full range of crust thicknesses and ages, as well a variety of crust formation types [Christensen, Mooney, 1995]. We used the 3D gravity modeling software package 3SGravity developed by Senachin [2015a, 2015b] that considers the spherical shape of the Earth's surface, and estimated gravitional anomalies using

  4. Crust and upper mantle structure in the Caribbean region by group velocity tomography and regionalization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    O'Leary, Gonzalez; Alvarez, L.; Chimera, G.; Panza, G.F.

    2004-04-01

    An overview of the crust and upper mantle structure of the Central America and Caribbean region is presented as a result of the processing of more than 200 seismograms recorded by digital broadband stations from SSSN and GSN seismic networks. By FTAN analysis of the fundamental mode of the Rayleigh waves, group velocity dispersion curves are obtained in the period range from 10 s to 40 s; the error of these measurements varies from 0.06 and 0.10 km/s. From the dispersion curves, seven tomographic maps at different periods and with average spatial resolution of 500 km are obtained. Using the logical combinatorial classification techniques, eight main groups of dispersion curves are determined from the tomographic maps and eleven main regions, each one characterized by one kind of dispersion curves, are identified. The average dispersion curves obtained for each region are extended to 150 s by adding data from the tomographic study of and inverted using a non-linear procedure. As a result of the inversion process, a set of models of the S-wave velocity vs. depth in the crust and upper mantle are found. In six regions, we identify a typically oceanic crust and upper mantle structure, while in the other two the models are consistent with the presence of a continental structure. Two regions, located over the major geological zones of the accretionary crust of the Caribbean region, are characterized by a peculiar crust and upper mantle structure, indicating the presence of lithospheric roots reaching, at least, about 200 km of depth. (author)

  5. A global reference model of Moho depths based on WGM2012

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, D.; Li, C.

    2017-12-01

    The crust-mantle boundary (Moho discontinuity) represents the largest density contrast in the lithosphere, which can be detected by Bouguer gravity anomaly. We present our recent inversion of global Moho depths from World Gravity Map 2012. Because oceanic lithospheres increase in density as they cool, we perform thermal correction based on the plate cooling model. We adopt a temperature Tm=1300°C at the bottom of lithosphere. The plate thickness is tested by varying by 5 km from 90 to 140 km, and taken as 130 km that gives a best-fit crustal thickness constrained by seismic crustal thickness profiles. We obtain the residual Bouguer gravity anomalies by subtracting the thermal correction from WGM2012, and then estimate Moho depths based on the Parker-Oldenburg algorithm. Taking the global model Crust1.0 as a priori constraint, we adopt Moho density contrasts of 0.43 and 0.4 g/cm3 , and initial mean Moho depths of 37 and 20 km in the continental and oceanic domains, respectively. The number of iterations in the inversion is set to be 150, which is large enough to obtain an error lower than a pre-assigned convergence criterion. The estimated Moho depths range between 0 76 km, and are averaged at 36 and 15 km in continental and oceanic domain, respectively. Our results correlate very well with Crust1.0 with differences mostly within ±5.0 km. Compared to the low resolution of Crust1.0 in oceanic domain, our results have a much larger depth range reflecting diverse structures such as ridges, seamounts, volcanic chains and subduction zones. Base on this model, we find that young(95mm/yr) we observe relatively thicker crust. Conductive cooling of lithosphere may constrain the melting of the mantle at ultraslow spreading centers. Lower mantle temperatures indicated by deeper Curie depths at slow and fast spreading ridges may decrease the volume of magmatism and crustal thickness. This new global model of gravity-derived Moho depth, combined with geochemical and Curie

  6. Evolution of Fractal Parameters through Development Stage of Soil Crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ospina, Abelardo; Florentino, Adriana; Tarquis, Ana Maria

    2016-04-01

    Soil surface characteristics are subjected to changes driven by several interactions between water, air, biotic and abiotic components. One of the examples of such interactions is provided through biological soil crusts (BSC) in arid and semi-arid environments. BSC are communities composed of cyanobacteria, fungi, mosses, lichens, algae and liverworts covering the soil surface and play an important role in ecosystem functioning. The characteristics and formation of these BSC influence the soil hydrological balance, control the mass of eroded sediment, increase stability of soil surface, and influence plant productivity through the modification of nitrogen and carbon cycle. The site of this work is located at Quibor and Ojo de Agua (Lara state, Venezuela). The Quibor Depression in Venezuela is a major agricultural area being at semi-arid conditions and limited drainage favor the natural process of salinization. Additionally, the extension and intensification of agriculture has led to over-exploitation of groundwater in the past 30 years (Méndoza et al., 2013). The soil microbial crust develops initially on physical crusts which are mainly generated since wetting and drying, being a recurrent feature in the Quíbor arid zone. The microbiotic crust is organic, composed of macro organisms (bryophytes and lichens) and microorganisms (cyanobacteria, fungi algae, etc.); growing on the ground, forming a thickness no greater than 3 mm. For further details see Toledo and Florentino (2009). This study focus on characterize the development stage of the BSC based on image analysis. To this end, grayscale images of different types of biological soil crust at different stages where taken, each image corresponding to an area of 12.96 cm2 with a resolution of 1024x1024 pixels (Ospina et al., 2015). For each image lacunarity and fractal dimension through the differential box counting method were calculated. These were made with the software ImageJ/Fraclac (Karperien, 2013

  7. The gravity field of the Red Sea and East Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Makris, Jannis; Henke, Christian H.; Egloff, Frank; Akamaluk, Thomas

    1991-11-01

    Reevaluation of all gravity data from the Red Sea, the Gulf of Aden and East Africa permitted the compilation of a new Bouguer anomaly map. The intensity of the gravity field and its regional pattern correlate closely with the topographic features of the region. The maximum Bouguer values (> + 100 mGal) are located over the median troughs of the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden. Dense juvenile oceanic crust in these rifts and intruding magmas in stretched continental areas produce excess mass responsible for the anomaly highs. In the Red Sea the orientation of the gravity highs is NW-SE in the south, turning to NE-SW in the north, almost parallel to the Aqaba-Dead Sea strike. This pattern reveals that the present basin axis is not identical with that which formed the Tertiary coastal margins and the pre-Red Sea zones of crustal weakness. In the Gulf of Aden, new oceanic crust along the Tadjura Trench and its eastward extension is also expressed in the Bouguer anomaly map by gravity highs and a sharp bending of the isolines. A maximum of approx. +150 mGal is located over the central section of the Sheba Ridge. Bouguer gravity values over the East African and Yemen Plateaus are of the order of -180 to -240 mGal, indicating significant crustal thickening. On the Somali Plateau, the Marda Fault also has a strong gravity signature that can be traced towards Somalia. By constraining crustal thickness and structure with seismic data and density values from the velocity distribution by means of the Nafe-Drake and Birch relationships, we computed density models for the crust and upper mantle. The crustal thickness is of the order of 40 km beneath the plateaus and only 5 to 6 km at the oceanized parts in the central and southern portions of the Red Sea median trough. The flanks of the southern Red Sea and the corresponding Arabian side are underlain by 12 to 16 km thick stretched continental type crust. Oceanization offshore Sudan and Egypt is asymmetrical. The continental crust

  8. 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

  9. Ocean basin volume constraints on global sea level since the Jurassic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seton, M.; Müller, R. D.

    2011-12-01

    Changes in the volume of the ocean basins, predominately via changes in the age-area distribution of oceanic lithosphere, have been suggested as the main driver for long-term eustatic sea-level change. As ocean lithosphere cools and thickens, ocean depth increases. The balance between the abundance of hot and buoyant crust along mid ocean ridges relative to abyssal plains is the primary driving force of long-term sea level changes. The emplacement of volcanic plateaus and chains as well as sedimentation contribute to raising eustatic sea level. Quantifying the average ocean basin depth through time primarily relies on the present day preserved seafloor spreading record, an analysis of the spatio-temporal record of plate boundary processes recorded on the continental margins adjacent to ocean basins as well as a consideration of the rules of plate tectonics, to reconstruct the history of seafloor spreading in the oceanic basins through time. This approach has been successfully applied to predict the magnitude and pattern of eustatic sea-level change since the Cretaceous (Müller et. al. 2008) but uncertainties in reconstructing mid ocean ridges and flanks increase back through time, given that we mainly depend on information preserved in preserved ocean crust. We have reconstructed the age-area distribution of oceanic lithosphere and the plate boundary configurations back to the Jurassic (200 Ma) in order to assess long-term sea-level change from amalgamation to dispersal of Pangaea. We follow the methodology presented in Müller et. al. (2008) but incorporate a new absolute plate motion model derived from Steinberger and Torsvik (2008) prior to 100 Ma, a merged Wessel et. al. (2006) and Wessel and Kroenke (2008) fixed Pacific hotspot reference frame, and a revised model for the formation of Panthalassa and the Cretaceous Pacific. Importantly, we incorporate a model for the break-up of the Ontong Java-Manihiki-Hikurangi plateaus between 120-86 Ma. We extend a

  10. Platinum stable isotopes in ferromanganese crust and nodules

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corcoran, Loretta; Seward, Terry; Handler, Monica R.

    2015-04-01

    Hydrogenetic ferromanganese (Fe-Mn) crust and nodules are slow-growing chemical sediments that form by direct precipitation from seawater, resulting in a record of changing seawater chemistry. These sediments are the primary sink for platinum in the modern oxic marine environment, hosting well-documented enrichments over other platinum-group elements (PGEs): the Pt anomaly [1]. Platinum is a non-bio-essential, highly siderophile, transition metal with six stable isotopes (190Pt, 192Pt, 194Pt, 195Pt, 196Pt, and 198Pt) with several oxidation states (Pt0, Pt2+ and Pt4+). Platinum is generally considered to exist in the hydrosphere as Pt2+ although its behaviour in the marine environment is poorly constrained, and Pt4+may also be present. Variations in ocean redox state, together with changes in source fluxes to the oceans, may therefore lead to small variations (Leaching experiments conducted on platinum rich terrestrial materials underwent platinum stable isotopic measurement as an analogue for the Pt isotopic fractionation associated with continental weathering. [1] Hodge, V.F. et al. (1985) Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 72, 158-162. [2] Creech, J. et al. (2013) Journal of Analytical Atomic Spectrometry, 28. 853-865.

  11. Constraints on Moho Depth and Crustal Thickness in the Liguro-Provençal Basin from a 3d Gravity Inversion : Geodynamic Implications Contraintes sur la profondeur du moho et l'épaisseur crustale dans le bassin liguro-provençal à partir de l'inversion 3D de données gravimétriques : implications géodynamiques

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gaulier J. M.

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available 3D gravity modelling is combined with seismic refraction and reflection data to constrain a new Moho depth map in the Liguro-Provençal Basin (Western Mediterranean Sea. At seismically controlled points, the misfit between the gravimetric solution and the seismic data is about 2 km for a range of Moho depth between 12 km (deep basin and 30 km (mainlands. The oceanic crust thickness in the deep basin (5 km is smaller than the average oceanic crust thickness reported in open oceans (7 km, pointing to a potential mantle temperature 30°C to 50°C below normal and/or very slow oceanic spreading rate. Oceanic crust thickness is decreasing towards the Ligurian Sea and towards the continent-ocean boundary to values as small as 2 km. Poor magma supply is a result of low potential mantle temperature at depth, lateral thermal conduction towards unextended continental margin, and decrease of the oceanic spreading rate close to the pole of opening in the Ligurian Sea. Re-examination of magnetic data (paleomagnetic data and magnetic lineations indicates that opening of the Liguro-Provençal Basin may have ceased as late as Late Burdigalian (16. 5 Ma or even later. The absence of significant time gap between cessation of opening in the Liguro-Provençal Basin and rifting of the Tyrrhenian domain favours a continuous extension mechanism since Upper Oligocene driven by the African trench retreat. Ce rapport présente un travail commun avec le Laboratoire de géodynamique de l'École normale supérieure (ENS. Ce travail doit être resitué dans son contexte : l'étude régionale du golfe du Lion a été possible dans le cadre du projet européen Integrated Basin Studies. Le développement du code d'inversion 3D avait fait l'objet de conventions avec l'ENS pendant les années précédentes. La mise en Suvre d'une telle inversion est désormais possible à l'IFP. Il n'y a pas d'interface pour ce calculateur. L'aide des collègues de l'ENS est souhaitable pour la

  12. Crustal thickness and Vp/Vs beneath the southeastern United States: Constraints from receiver function stacking

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Q.; Gao, S. S.; Liu, K. H.

    2017-12-01

    To provide new constraints on crustal structure and evolution models beneath a collage of tectonic provinces in the southeastern United States, a total of 10,753 teleseismic receiver functions recorded by 125 USArray and other seismic stations are used to compute crustal thickness and Vp/Vs values. The resulting crustal thicknesses range from 25 km at the coast to 51 km beneath the peak of the southern Appalachians with an average of 36.2 km ± 5.5 km. The resulting crustal thicknesses correlate well with surface elevation and Bouguer gravity anomalies. Beneath the Atlantic Coastal Plain, the crustal thicknesses show a clear eastward thinning with a magnitude of 10 km, from about 40 km beneath the western margin to 30 km beneath the coast. The Vp/Vs values for the entire study area range from 1.71 to 1.90 with a mean value of 1.80 ± 0.04. The mean Vp/Vs value is 1.82±0.035 in the southern Appalachian Mountain. The slightly larger than normal crustal Vp/Vs for this area might be the result of significant erosion of the felsic upper crust over the past 300 million years. Alternatively, it could also suggest the existence of pervasive magmatic intrusion into the Appalachian crust. The Vp/Vs measurements in the Atlantic Coastal Plain increase toward the east, ranging from 1.75 to 1.82, probably indicating a gradual increase of mafic magmatic intrusion into thinner crust during the development of the passive continental margin.

  13. Unusually thickened crust beneath the Emeishan large igneous province detected by virtual deep seismic sounding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Zhen; Tian, Xiaobo; Chen, Yun; Xu, Tao; Bai, Zhiming; Liang, Xiaofeng; Iqbal, Javed; Xu, Yigang

    2017-11-01

    The Emeishan Large Igneous Province (ELIP) in southwest China represents the erosional remnant of a vast basalt field emplaced during the Permian Period. Spanning 0.25 million km2, the ELIP occupies a relatively small area relative to other Large Igneous Provinces (LIPs) such as the Siberian Traps and Ontong Java Plateau. The original volume of an ancient LIP can be constrained from estimates of its intrusive component. We used virtual deep seismic sounding (VDSS) to detect the boundary between the crust and the upper mantle (Moho) beneath the ELIP. A strong set of reflections from depths of 60-70 km indicate an unusually thick crust having a P-wave velocity of 7.0-7.4 km/s located beneath the inner zone of the ELIP. A high-velocity lower crustal body (HVLCB) of this thickness may have been formed by ponding magmas derived from the Emeishan mantle plume and associated fractionated materials. Combined images of crustal structure allow re-estimation of Emeishan magmatic volume. With a total estimated volume of 1.76-3.2 × 106 km3, the ELIP appears to have been a typical sized plume-generated LIP relative to other global examples.

  14. How biological crusts are stabilizing the soil surface? The devolpment of organo-mineral interactions in the initial phase

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fischer, T.; Veste, M.; Wiehe, W.; Lange, P.

    2009-04-01

    First colonizers of new land surfaces are cryptogames which often form biological soil crusts (BSC) covering the first millimetre of the top soil in many ecosystems from polar to desert ecosystems. These BSC are assemblages of cyanobacteria, green algae, mosses, liverworts, fungi and/or lichens. The development of soil surface crusts plays a major role for the further vegetation pattern through changes to the physico-chemical conditions and influencing various ecosystem processes. We studied the development of BSC on quaternary substrate of an initial artificial water catchment in Lusatia, Germany. Due to lack of organic matter in the geological substrate, photoautotrophic organisms like green algae and cyanobacteria dominated the initial phases of ecosystem development and, hence, of organo-mineral ineractions. We combined SEM/EDX and FTIR microscopy to study the contact zone of extracellular polymeric substances (EPS) of green algae and cyanobacteria with quartz, spars and mica on a >40 µm scale in undisturbed biological soil crusts, which had a maximum thickness of approx. 2 mm. SEM/EDX microscopy was used to determine the spatial distribution of S, Ca, Fe, Al, Si and K in the profiles, organic compounds were identified using FTIR microscopy. Exudates of crust organisms served as cementing material between sand particles. The crust could be subdivided into two horizontal layers. The upper layer, which had a thickness of approx. 200 µm, is characterized by accumulation of Al and K, but absence of Fe in microbial derived organic matter, indicating capture of weathering products of feldspars and mica by microbial exudates. The pore space between mineral particles was entirely filled with organic matter here. The underlying layer can be characterized by empty pores and organo-mineral bridges between the sand particles. Contrarily to the upper layer of the crust, Fe, Al and Si were associated with organic matter here but K was absent. Highest similarity of the FTIR

  15. Results of the first Seismometer to Investigate Ice and Ocean Structure (SIIOS) Analogue Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Della-Giustina, Daniella; Bray, Veronica; "Hop" Bailey, Samuel; Pettit, Erin; Schmerr, Nicholas; Dahl, Peter; Avenson, Brad; Byrne, Shane; SIIOS Team

    2017-10-01

    The icy moons of Europa and Enceladus are thought to have global subsurface oceans in contact with mineral-rich interiors, likely providing the ingredients needed for life as we know it. The possibility of life forming in the ocean or in melt pockets, relies on the presence of a source of energy and chemistry for biological molecule formation. A thick, stagnant ice crust would likely prevent transfer of oxidants from the surface to the water, halting the development of life. The ice thickness and structure is therefore one of the most important and controversial topics in astrobiology.The best way to access an icy moon’s interior structure is with a lander-based seismometer. Our team has identified a commercial-off-the-shelf device as a flight-candidate for operation in the extreme environment of the icy moons. Based on estimates of Europan seismicity, the flight candidate device is sensitive enough to detect the ice-water boundary and pockets of liquid within the ice. Its low mass and low power enables deployment of multiple seismometers in a short-baseline array on a lander. The performance, mass, and volume of this device meet or exceed flight requirements identified in lander studies making a field test of these seismometers highly representative of a flight unit developed for an Ocean Worlds mission.We report the results of the first field campaign for the SIIOS Analogue Mission Program (AMP), which has evaluates the performance of the flight candidate seismometer in Ocean World terrestrial analogue environments. In particular, the first SIIOS AMP field exercise is performed at Gulkana Glacier, Alaska. During the summer melt season Gulkana provides kilometer-scale regions of coexisting ice, water, and silicate material, thereby providing areas with the desired analogue seismic contrasts. During this first mission, we have demonstrated device sensitivity to the detection of seismicity from high frequency (> 50 Hz) active and passive sources, the depth of ice

  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

    We present the results from modelling the gravity and density structure of the upper mantle for the off-shore area of the North Atlantic region. The crust and upper mantle of the region is expected to be anomalous: Part of the region affected by the Icelandic plume has an anomalously shallow bathymetry, whereas the northern part of the region is characterized by ultraslow spreading. In order to understand the links between deep geodynamical processes that control the spreading rate, on one hand, and their manifestations such as oceanic floor bathymetry and heat flow, on the other hand, we model the gravity and density structure of the upper mantle from satellite gravity data. The calculations are based on interpretation of GOCE gravity satellite data for the North Atlantics. To separate the gravity signal responsible for density anomalies within the crust and upper mantle, we subtract the lower harmonics caused by deep density structure of the Earth (the core and the lower mantle). The gravity effect of the upper mantle is calculated by subtracting the gravity effect of the crust for two crustal models. We use a recent regional seismic model for the crustal structure (Artemieva and Thybo, 2013) based om seismic data together with borehole data for sediments. For comparison, similar results are presented for the global CRUST 1.0 model as well (Laske, 2013). The conversion of seismic velocity data for the crustal structure to crustal density structure is crucial for the final results. We use a combination of Vp-to-density conversion based on published laboratory measurements for the crystalline basement (Ludwig, Nafe, Drake, 1970; Christensen and Mooney, 1995) and for oceanic sediments and oceanic crust based on laboratory measurements for serpentinites and gabbros from the Mid-Atlantic Ridge (Kelemen et al., 2004). Also, to overcome the high degree of uncertainty in Vp-to-density conversion, we account for regional tectonic variations in the Northern Atlantics as

  17. CHIC - Coupling Habitability, Interior and Crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noack, Lena; Labbe, Francois; Boiveau, Thomas; Rivoldini, Attilio; Van Hoolst, Tim

    2014-05-01

    We present a new code developed for simulating convection in terrestrial planets and icy moons. The code CHIC is written in Fortran and employs the finite volume method and finite difference method for solving energy, mass and momentum equations in either silicate or icy mantles. The code uses either Cartesian (2D and 3D box) or spherical coordinates (2D cylinder or annulus). It furthermore contains a 1D parametrised model to obtain temperature profiles in specific regions, for example in the iron core or in the silicate mantle (solving only the energy equation). The 2D/3D convection model uses the same input parameters as the 1D model, which allows for comparison of the different models and adaptation of the 1D model, if needed. The code has already been benchmarked for the following aspects: - viscosity-dependent rheology (Blankenbach et al., 1989) - pseudo-plastic deformation (Tosi et al., in preparation phase) - subduction mechanism and plastic deformation (Quinquis et al., in preparation phase) New features that are currently developed and benchmarked include: - compressibility (following King et al., 2009 and Leng and Zhong, 2008) - different melt modules (Plesa et al., in preparation phase) - freezing of an inner core (comparison with GAIA code, Huettig and Stemmer, 2008) - build-up of oceanic and continental crust (Noack et al., in preparation phase) The code represents a useful tool to couple the interior with the surface of a planet (e.g. via build-up and erosion of crust) and it's atmosphere (via outgassing on the one hand and subduction of hydrated crust and carbonates back into the mantle). It will be applied to investigate several factors that might influence the habitability of a terrestrial planet, and will also be used to simulate icy bodies with high-pressure ice phases. References: Blankenbach et al. (1989). A benchmark comparison for mantle convection codes. GJI 98, 23-38. Huettig and Stemmer (2008). Finite volume discretization for dynamic

  18. Seismic structure of the crust and upper mantle in central-eastern Greenland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kraft, Helene Anja

    Geophysical and geological knowledge of the interior of Greenland is very limited. The lack of knowledge arises mainly due to the logistical challenges related to conducting geophysical fieldwork on the up to 3400 m thick ice sheet, which covers around 80% of the land area. This PhD thesis is based...... on the very first regional passive seismic study in central-Eastern Greenland, focusing on the area between Scoresby Sund and Summit. The study aims to image the structure of subsurface Greenland starting from the crust and down to the mantle transition zone. Furthermore, the thesis links these observations....... The receiver functions were jointly inverted for the velocity structure of the crust and delay times, and shapes of signals originating at the mantle transition zone discontinuities, P410s and P660s, were analysed. The crustal models show a deepening of the Moho from east to west from less than 20 km depth...

  19. Evolution of the Late Cretaceous crust in the equatorial region of the Northern Indian Ocean and its implication in understanding the plate kinematics

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Desa, M.; Ramana, M.V.; Ramprasad, T.

    history of the Late Cretaceous crust characterized by anomaly 34 through 31 (83.5-68.7Ma) under complex tectonic settings. Seafloor spreading model studies suggest that the crust, particularly between the chrons 33R and 33 (79.0-73.6 Ma), was formed...

  20. Channelized lava flows at the East Pacific Rise crest 9°-10°N: the importance of off-axis lava transport in developing the architecture of young oceanic crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soule, S.A.; Fornari, D.J.; Perfit, M.R.; Tivey, M.A.; Ridley, W.I.; Schouten, Hans

    2005-01-01

     Submarine lava flows are the building blocks of young oceanic crust. Lava erupted at the ridge axis is transported across the ridge crest in a manner dictated by the rheology of the lava, the characteristics of the eruption, and the topography it encounters. The resulting lava flows can vary dramatically in form and consequently in their impact on the physical characteristics of the seafloor and the architecture of the upper 50–500 m of the oceanic crust. We have mapped and measured numerous submarine channelized lava flows at the East Pacific Rise (EPR) crest 9°–10°N that reflect the high-effusion-rate and high-flow-velocity end-member of lava eruption and transport at mid-ocean ridges. Channel systems composed of identifiable segments 50–1000 m in length extend up to 3 km from the axial summit trough (AST) and have widths of 10–50 m and depths of 2–3 m. Samples collected within the channels are N-MORB with Mg# indicating eruption from the AST. We produce detailed maps of lava surface morphology across the channel surface from mosaics of digital images that show lineated or flat sheets at the channel center bounded by brecciated lava at the channel margins. Modeled velocity profiles across the channel surface allow us to determine flux through the channels from 0.4 to 4.7 × 103m3/s, and modeled shear rates help explain the surface morphology variation. We suggest that channelized lava flows are a primary mechanism by which lava accumulates in the off-axis region (1–3 km) and produces the layer 2A thickening that is observed at fast and superfast spreading ridges. In addition, the rapid, high-volume-flux eruptions necessary to produce channelized flows may act as an indicator of the local magma budget along the EPR. We find that high concentrations of channelized lava flows correlate with local, across-axis ridge morphology indicative of an elevated magma budget. Additionally, in locations where channelized flows are located dominantly to the east

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  2. Lunar feldspathic meteorites: Constraints on the geology of the lunar highlands, and the origin of the lunar crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gross, Juliane; Treiman, Allan H.; Mercer, Celestine N.

    2014-02-01

    The composition of the lunar crust provides clues about the processes that formed it and hence contains information on the origin and evolution of the Moon. Current understanding of lunar evolution is built on the Lunar Magma Ocean hypothesis that early in its history, the Moon was wholly or mostly molten. This hypothesis is based on analyses of Apollo samples of ferroan anorthosites (>90% plagioclase; molar Mg/(Mg+Fe)=Mg#Moon's surface, and remote sensing data, show that ferroan anorthosites are not globally distributed and that the Apollo highland samples, used as a basis for the model, are influenced by ejecta from the Imbrium basin. In this study we evaluate anorthosites from all currently available adequately described lunar highland meteorites, representing a more widespread sampling of the lunar highlands than Apollo samples alone, and find that ∼80% of them are significantly more magnesian than Apollo ferroan anorthosites. Interestingly, Luna mission anorthosites, collected outside the continuous Imbrium ejecta, are also highly magnesian. If the lunar highland crust consists dominantly of magnesian anorthosites, as suggested by their abundance in samples sourced outside Imbrium ejecta, a reevaluation of the Lunar Magma Ocean model is a sensible step forward in the endeavor to understand lunar evolution. Our results demonstrate that lunar anorthosites are more similar in their chemical trends and mineral abundance to terrestrial massif anorthosites than to anorthosites predicted in a Lunar Magma Ocean. This analysis does not invalidate the idea of a Lunar Magma Ocean, which seems a necessity under the giant impact hypothesis for the origin of the moon. However, it does indicate that most rocks now seen at the Moon's surface are not primary products of a magma ocean alone, but are products of more complex crustal processes.

  3. Crustal basement controls granitoid magmatism, and implications for generation of continental crust in subduction zones: A Sr-Nd-Hf-O isotopic study from the Paleozoic Tongbai orogen, central China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Hao; Wu, Yuan-Bao; Yang, Jin-Hui; Qin, Zheng-Wei; Duan, Rui-Chun; Zhou, Lian; Yang, Sai-Hong

    2017-06-01

    Ascertaining the petrogenesis of granitoid rocks in subduction zones holds the key for understanding the processes of how continental crust is produced. The synchronous Taoyuan and Huanggang plutons occur in two different geological units of the Paleozoic Tongbai orogen of central China. They provide an optimal opportunity for a study to address the role of the crustal basement in generating voluminous granitoid magmatism in subduction zones. The Taoyuan and Huanggang plutons have identical U-Pb zircon crystallization ages of 440-444 Ma, which are temporally related to northward subduction of the Paleotethyan Ocean. The Taoyuan samples show high SiO2 (73.36-79.16%) and low Al2O3 (12.00-13.45%) contents, Mg numbers (20.6-38.2), and Sr/Y (2.04-10.1) and (La/Yb)N (2.34-7.32) ratios with negative Eu anomalies (Eu/Eu* = 0.33-0.93). They yielded positive εNd(t) (+ 3.0 to + 6.7) and εHf(t) (+ 11.8 to + 13.2) values, elevated initial Sr isotopic ratios (0.7040-0.7057) and relatively low zircon δ18O values of 4.62-5.39‰. These suggest that they were produced through partial melting of hydrothermally altered lower crust of the accreted Erlangping oceanic arc. In contrast, the Huanggang samples exhibit variable whole-rock geochemical and isotopic compositions with SiO2 contents of 57.01-64.42 wt.%, initial Sr isotopic ratios of 0.7065-0.7078, and εNd(t) values of - 5.7 to - 9.4. Additionally, they have high zircon δ18O values of 7.57-8.45‰ and strongly negative zircon εHf(t) values of - 14.4 to - 10.5. They were suggested to have been mainly derived from ancient continental crust of the Kuanping crustal unit with the addition of 20-40% juvenile, mantle-derived material. Accordingly, the granitoids in both oceanic and continental arcs are likely to be mainly derived from intracrustal melting of their crustal basement. It is revealed by the Huanggang pluton that little net continental crust growth occurs in continental arcs, and addition of new volume of continental

  4. Dynamics of a Snowball Earth ocean.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ashkenazy, Yosef; Gildor, Hezi; Losch, Martin; Macdonald, Francis A; Schrag, Daniel P; Tziperman, Eli

    2013-03-07

    Geological evidence suggests that marine ice extended to the Equator at least twice during the Neoproterozoic era (about 750 to 635 million years ago), inspiring the Snowball Earth hypothesis that the Earth was globally ice-covered. In a possible Snowball Earth climate, ocean circulation and mixing processes would have set the melting and freezing rates that determine ice thickness, would have influenced the survival of photosynthetic life, and may provide important constraints for the interpretation of geochemical and sedimentological observations. Here we show that in a Snowball Earth, the ocean would have been well mixed and characterized by a dynamic circulation, with vigorous equatorial meridional overturning circulation, zonal equatorial jets, a well developed eddy field, strong coastal upwelling and convective mixing. This is in contrast to the sluggish ocean often expected in a Snowball Earth scenario owing to the insulation of the ocean from atmospheric forcing by the thick ice cover. As a result of vigorous convective mixing, the ocean temperature, salinity and density were either uniform in the vertical direction or weakly stratified in a few locations. Our results are based on a model that couples ice flow and ocean circulation, and is driven by a weak geothermal heat flux under a global ice cover about a kilometre thick. Compared with the modern ocean, the Snowball Earth ocean had far larger vertical mixing rates, and comparable horizontal mixing by ocean eddies. The strong circulation and coastal upwelling resulted in melting rates near continents as much as ten times larger than previously estimated. Although we cannot resolve the debate over the existence of global ice cover, we discuss the implications for the nutrient supply of photosynthetic activity and for banded iron formations. Our insights and constraints on ocean dynamics may help resolve the Snowball Earth controversy when combined with future geochemical and geological observations.

  5. From a collage of microplates to stable continental crust - an example from Precambrian Europe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korja, Annakaisa

    2013-04-01

    of spreading. Close to the original ocean-continent plate boundary, in the core of the Svecofennian orogen, the thickened accretionary crust carries pervasive stretching lineations at surface and seismic vp-velocity anisotropy in the crust. The direction of spreading and crustal flow seems to be diverted by shapes of the pre-existing boundaries. It is concluded that lateral spreading and midcrustal flow not only rearrange the bedrock architecture but also stabilize the young accreted continental crust in emerging internal orogenic systems. Pre-existing microplate/terrane boundaries will affect the final architecture of the orogenic belt.

  6. Seismic velocity structure of the crust in NW Namibia: Impact of rifting and mantle plume activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer, K.; Heit, B.; Muksin, U.; Yuan, X.

    2017-12-01

    The continental crust in northwestern Namibiamainly was formed during to the Neoproterozoic assembly of Gondwana. The collision of old African and South American cratonic coressuch as the Congo, Kalahari and Rio de la Plata cratons led tothe development of the Pan-African Damara orogen. The fold systemconsists of an intracratonic branch in northern central Namibia (named Damara Belt), and two coast-parallel branches, the Kaoko Belt in northern Namibia and the Gariep Belt in the border region between Namibia and theRepublic of South Africa. During the Early Cretaceous opening of the South Atlantic ocean, the crust in NW Namibia was prominently affected by the Tristan da Cunha mantle plume, as evidenced by the emplacement of the Etendeka continental flood basalts.A local earthquake tomography was carried out in NW Namibia to investigateif and to what degree the deeper continental crust was modified by the magmaticactivity during rifting and the impingement of the Tristan da Cunhamantle plume. We analyzed data from 28 onshore stations of the temporaryWALPASS seismic network. Stations were covering the continental marginaround the landfall of the Walvis Ridge, parts of the Kaoko Belt and Damara Belt,and marginally the southwestern edges of the Congo craton.First arrivals of P and S waves were identified and travel times werepicked manually. 1D inversion was carried out with VELEST to derivestarting models and the initial seismicity distribution, and SIMUL2000was used for the subsequent 3D tomographic inversion. The resultingseismicity distribution mainly follows the structures of the Pan-Africanorogenic belts. The majority of events was localized in the upper crust,but additional seismicity was also found in the deeper crust.An anomaly of increased P velocities is revealed in the deep crust under the Etendekaflood basalt province. Increased P velocities can be explained by mafic and ultra-maficmaterial which intruded in the lower crust. The anomaly appears to be rather

  7. Massive Hydrothermal Flows of Fluids and Heat: Earth Constraints and Ocean World Considerations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fisher, A. T.

    2018-05-01

    This presentation reviews the hydrogeologic nature of Earth's ocean crust and evidence for massive flows of low-temperature (≤70°C), seafloor hydrothermal circulation through ridge flanks, including the influence of crustal relief and crustal faults.

  8. Influence of substrate rocks on Fe-Mn crust composition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hein, J.R.; Morgan, C.L.

    1999-01-01

    Principal Component and other statistical analyses of chemical and mineralogical data of Fe-Mn oxyhydroxide crusts and their underlying rock substrates in the central Pacific indicate that substrate rocks do not influence crust composition. Two ridges near Johnston Atoll were dredged repetitively and up to seven substrate rock types were recovered from small areas of similar water depths. Crusts were analyzed mineralogically and chemically for 24 elements, and substrates were analyzed mineralogically and chemically for the 10 major oxides. Compositions of crusts on phosphatized substrates are distinctly different from crusts on substrates containing no phosphorite. However, that relationship only indicates that the episodes of phosphatization that mineralized the substrate rocks also mineralized the crusts that grew on them. A two-fold increase in copper contents in crusts that grew on phosphatized clastic substrate rocks, relative to crusts on other substrate rock types, is also associated with phosphatization and must have resulted from chemical reorganization during diagenesis. Phosphatized crusts show increases in Sr, Zn, Ca, Ba, Cu, Ce, V, and Mo contents and decreases in Fe, Si, and As contents relative to non-phosphatized crusts. Our statistical results support previous studies which show that crust compositions reflect predominantly direct precipitation from seawater (hydrogenetic), and to lesser extents reflect detrital input and diagenetic replacement of parts of the older crust generation by carbonate fluorapatite.

  9. Oceanic Sub-Moho Reflectors in and Around the Segmentation Boundary Between the Tonankai-Nankai Earthquake Area, the Central Nankai Trough

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakanishi, A.; Kodaira, S.; Miura, S.; Ito, A.; Sato, T.; Park, J.; Obana, K.; Kaneda, Y.

    2006-12-01

    The Nankai Trough is a unique subduction zone because the recurrence intervals of M8 class earthquakes and the segmentation of rupture zones are well documented on the basis of geophysical, geological and historic data. In 2004, large intraslab earthquake (Mw7.5) occurred southeast off the Kii Peninsula, the central Nankai Trough. Recent ocean bottom seismograph observation off the Kii Peninsula shows seismicity concentrated in the oceanic crust and the uppermost mantle. To understand the genesis of such intraslab earthquakes and its relation to large interplate earthquakes as well as to obtain an entire structural image of Nankai Trough subduction seismogenic zone, a wide-angle reflection/refraction survey across the coseismic rupture zone of the Tonankai earthquake was conducted in 2004. This research is part of "Structure research on plate dynamics of the presumed rupture zone of the Tonankai-Nankai Earthquakes" funded by Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology. The result of structural image shows a bit thicker oceanic crust (>8km) subducting landward, and the existence of oceanic sub-Moho reflectors in the uppermost mantle. The aftershocks of the 2004 off Kii Peninsula earthquake are distributed within the oceanic crust and the uppermantle, which is not consistent with the estimated fault plane of main shock. Comparing the structural image with this aftershock distribution and usual seismicity in the uppermost mantle, the depth of the oceanic sub-Moho reflectors and the intraslab events within the uppermantle are both distributed around 20km. We consider that such sub-Moho reflectors may become a seismic fault of intraslab earthquakes.

  10. Isotope composition and volume of Earth's early oceans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pope, Emily C; Bird, Dennis K; Rosing, Minik T

    2012-03-20

    Oxygen and hydrogen isotope compositions of Earth's seawater are controlled by volatile fluxes among mantle, lithospheric (oceanic and continental crust), and atmospheric reservoirs. Throughout geologic time the oxygen mass budget was likely conserved within these Earth system reservoirs, but hydrogen's was not, as it can escape to space. Isotopic properties of serpentine from the approximately 3.8 Ga Isua Supracrustal Belt in West Greenland are used to characterize hydrogen and oxygen isotope compositions of ancient seawater. Archaean oceans were depleted in deuterium [expressed as δD relative to Vienna standard mean ocean water (VSMOW)] by at most 25 ± 5‰, but oxygen isotope ratios were comparable to modern oceans. Mass balance of the global hydrogen budget constrains the contribution of continental growth and planetary hydrogen loss to the secular evolution of hydrogen isotope ratios in Earth's oceans. Our calculations predict that the oceans of early Earth were up to 26% more voluminous, and atmospheric CH(4) and CO(2) concentrations determined from limits on hydrogen escape to space are consistent with clement conditions on Archaean Earth.

  11. TELLUS_OCEAN_GIF_CSR_RL05:1

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The images were generated from the monthly ocean mass grids, which contain ocean water mass given as equivalent water thickness derived from the Center of Space...

  12. Study on 3-D velocity structure of crust and upper mantle in Sichuan-yunnan region, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, C.; Mooney, W.D.; Wang, X.; Wu, J.; Lou, H.; Wang, F.

    2002-01-01

    Based on the first arrival P and S data of 4 625 regional earthquakes recorded at 174 stations dispersed in the Yunnan and Sichuan Provinces, the 3-D velocity structure of crust and upper mantle in the region is determined, incorporating with previous deep geophysical data. In the upper crust, a positive anomaly velocity zone exists in the Sichuan basin, whereas a negative anomaly velocity zone exists in the western Sichuan plateau. The boundary between the positive and negative anomaly zones is the Longmenshan fault zone. The images of lower crust and upper mantle in the Longmenshan fault, Xianshuihe fault, Honghe fault and others appear the characteristic of tectonic boundary, indicating that the faults litely penetrate the Moho discontinuity. The negative velocity anomalies at the depth of 50 km in the Tengchong volcanic area and the Panxi tectonic zone appear to be associated with the temperature and composition variations in the upper mantle. The overall features of the crustal and the upper mantle structures in the Sichuan-Yunnan region are the lower average velocity in both crust and uppermost mantle, the large crustal thickness variations, and the existence of high conductivity layer in the crust or/and upper mantle, and higher geothermal value. All these features are closely related to the collision between the Indian and the Asian plates. The crustal velocity in the Sichuan-Yunnan rhombic block generally shows normal.value or positive anomaly, while the negative anomaly exists in the area along the large strike-slip faults as the block boundary. It is conducive to the crustal block side-pressing out along the faults. In the major seismic zones, the seismicity is relative to the negative anomaly velocity. Most strong earthquakes occurred in the upper-mid crust with positive anomaly or normal velocity, where the negative anomaly zone generally exists below.

  13. First Report on Hawaiian Carbonatites

    OpenAIRE

    A. Rocholl; K. P. Jochum; B. Plessen; D. Rhede; R. L. Romer; R. Wirth

    2015-01-01

    Carbonatites are common in continental settings but have, so far, only been identified at two oceanic localities, the Cape Verde and Canary Islands, both resting on > 130 Ma old, thick and cool oceanic crust. Here, we report on the first carbonatites observed in a hotter and younger mid-ocean setting, occuring as xenolithic fragments in nephelinitic tuffs at Salt Lake Crater (SLC), Oahu, Hawaii. The existence of Hawaiian carbonatites has been hypothesized before from ...

  14. Russian River Ice Thickness and Duration

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set consists of river ice thickness measurements, and beginning and ending dates for river freeze-up events from fifty stations in northern Russia. The...

  15. Constraining formation of the Eggvin Bank (West of Jan Mayen, N. Atlantic) from OBS data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, P.; Breivik, A. J.; Mjelde, R.; Azuma, R.

    2015-12-01

    The anomalously high magma flux in the Eggvin Bank area has triggered new research efforts to better understand the crustal development in this area. The Eggvin Bank is located between the Jan Mayen Island and the west coast of Greenland. Some proposed origins of the Eggvin Bank are: a distinct plume located beneath Jan Mayen; an extension of the Iceland plume; minor spreading or leakage along West Jan Mayen Fracture Zone (WJMFZ); intruded continental crust extending from Jan Mayen Microcontinent (JMMC); and rifted Greenland sub-continental lithospheric mantle. In this first modern refraction seismic study of the Eggvin Bank, we present a 2D velocity model based on OBS data. The OBSs were deployed approx. N-S over the Eggvin Bank with good data quality constrained by 4 OBSs. The air-gun array used during OBS shooting produced good quality reflection data. Three distinct seamounts are observed along the profile: the northern seamount (water depth 730m), has a flat top with a thin sedimentary veneer on top, which indicates it has been eroded at sea surface; while the southern two seamounts, one (water depth 550m) is less flat with around 100m thick sedimentary units on top, another one is rounded with tiny sedimentary veneer on top having the shallowest water depth (460m). This could suggest that the southern seamounts are younger, since they are shallower but without obvious signs that they were subaerially exposed. However, increased cooling of the lithosphere across the WJMFZ in the north may also contribute to depth differences. A normal fault offsetting sedimentary strata (~300 m) in the Greenland Basin indicates recent tectonic activity north of the Eggvin Bank. The velocity modeling shows crustal thickness with large variations, ranging from 8 km to 14 km, where crustal thickness changes of 4-5 km are associated with 20-30 km wide segments with thick crust under the seamounts. The crust consists of three oceanic crustal layers: upper crust (2.8km/s-4.8km

  16. Variability in Rock Thermal Properties in the Late Archean Crust of the Kapuskasing Structural Zone and Implications for its Thermal Structure and Metamorphic History.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merriman, J. D.; Whittington, A. G.; Hofmeister, A. M.

    2017-12-01

    The thermal properties of rocks such as internal heat production and thermal diffusivity (α) play a key role in determining the thermal structure of the lithosphere, and consequently, the rates and styles of metamorphism within the crust. Over the last decade, measurements of α using the method laser flash analysis have shown the ability of a rock to conduct heat can vary by as much as a factor of 5 between common rock types, and decrease by up to a factor of 10 for the same rock between 25-1000°C. Here we present a preliminary model for the variability in rock throughout the crust based on measurements of the α of a suite of 100 samples from late Archean crust exposed in and around the Kapuskasing Structural Zone in Ontario, Canada. Preliminary results suggest that α is controlled primarily by mineralogy, and can vary not only between different rock types as described above, but also within the same rock by a factor of 1.5 (or more). Thermal diffusivity results were combined with heat producing element concentrations measured with ICP-MS to create a thermal model of the Kapuskasing Structural Zone prior its uplift and exposure. To provide additional constraints for P-T conditions within the pre-uplift KSZ crust, a combination of trace-element and pseudosection thermobarometry was used to estimate metamorphic temperatures during an extended period of crustal stability at the end of the Archean. Preliminary results were compared to finite-difference numerical models of the steady-state geothermal gradient using heat production back-calculated to 2.6 Ga. Results suggest a minimum thickness of the continental lithosphere during the late Archean of at least 150 km. To test the response of the crust to the effects of large thermal events such as pluton emplacement, we also performed time-dependent models of the thermal structure of the pre-uplift KSZ crust. These models suggest that heat from thermal events in the upper and middle crust result in a more insulating

  17. Palaeoceanographic conditions during the formation of ferromanganese crust from the Afanasiy Nikitin seamount, north central Indian Ocean: geochemical evidence

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Banakar, V.K.; Pattan, J.N.; Mudholkar, A.V.

    A ferromanganese crust dredged from the summit of the Afanasiy-Nikitin seamount in the composed of fresh-water phreatic calcite cement, Terebratulinae casts, rounded and ferruginised basalt clasts and weathered coralline algal fragments suggesting...

  18. Transdomes sampling of lower and middle crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teyssier, C. P.; Whitney, D. L.; Roger, F.; Rey, P. F.

    2015-12-01

    Migmatite transdomes are formed by lateral and upward flow of partially molten crust in transtension zones (pull-apart structures). In order to understand the flow leading to this type of domes, 3D numerical models were set-up to simulate the general case of an extensional domain located between two strike-slip faults (pull-apart or dilational bridge). Results show that upper crust extension induces flow of the deep, low-viscosity crust, with rapid upward movement of transdome material when extension becomes localized. At this point a rolling hinge detachment allows rapid removal of upper crust. The internal structure of transdomes includes a subvertical high strain zone located beneath the zone of localized upper crust extension; this shear zone separates two elongate subdomes of foliation that show refolded/sheath folds. Lineation tends to be oriented dominantly subhorizontal when the amount of strike-slip motion is greater than the amount of upward flow of dome rocks. Models also predict nearly isothermal decompression of transdome material and rapid transfer of ~50 km deep rocks to the near surface. These model results are compared to the structural and metamorphic history of several transdomes, and in particular the Variscan Montagne Noire dome (French Massif Central) that consists of two domes separated by a complex high strain zone. The Montagne Noire dome contains ~315 Ma eclogite bodies (U-Pb zircon age) that record 1.4 GPa peak pressure. The eclogite bodies are wrapped in highly sheared migmatite that yield 314-310 Ma monazite ages interpreted as the metamorphism and deformation age. Based on these relations we conclude that the Montagne Noire transdome developed a channel of partially molten crust that likely entrained eclogite bodies from the deep crust (~50 km) before ascending to the near-surface. One implication of this work is that the flowing crust was deeply seated in the orogen although it remained a poor recorder of peak pressure of metamorphism

  19. Physics of Neutron Star Crusts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chamel Nicolas

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available The physics of neutron star crusts is vast, involving many different research fields, from nuclear and condensed matter physics to general relativity. This review summarizes the progress, which has been achieved over the last few years, in modeling neutron star crusts, both at the microscopic and macroscopic levels. The confrontation of these theoretical models with observations is also briefly discussed.

  20. Biological Soil Crusts: Webs of Life in the Desert

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belnap, Jayne

    2001-01-01

    Although the soil surface may look like dirt to you, it is full of living organisms that are a vital part of desert ecosystems. This veneer of life is called a biological soil crust. These crusts are found throughout the world, from hot deserts to polar regions. Crusts generally cover all soil spaces not occupied by green plants. In many areas, they comprise over 70% of the living ground cover and are key in reducing erosion, increasing water retention, and increasing soil fertility. In most dry regions, these crusts are dominated by cyanobacteria (previously called blue-green algae), which are one of the oldest known life forms. Communities of soil crusts also include lichens, mosses, microfungi, bacteria, and green algae. These living organisms and their by-products create a continuous crust on the soil surface. The general color, surface appearance, and amount of coverage of these crusts vary depending on climate and disturbance patterns. Immature crusts are generally flat and the color of the soil, which makes them difficult to distinguish from bare ground. Mature crusts, in contrast, are usually bumpy and dark-colored due to the presence of lichens, mosses, and high densities of cyanobacteria and other organisms.

  1. Resolving the crustal composition paradox by 3.8 billion years of slab failure magmatism and collisional recycling of continental crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hildebrand, Robert S.; Whalen, Joseph B.; Bowring, Samuel A.

    2018-06-01

    In the standard paradigm, continental crust is formed mainly by arc magmatism, but because the compositions of magma rising from the mantle are basaltic and continental crust is estimated to contain about 60% SiO2 and much less MgO than basalt, the two do not match. To resolve this paradox, most researchers argue that large amounts of magmatic fractionation produce residual cumulates at the base of the crust, which because arcs are inferred to have magmatically thickened crust, form eclogites that ultimately founder and sink into the mantle. Not only are there problems with the contrasting bulk compositions, but the standard model also fails because prior to collision most modern arcs do not have thick crust, as documented by their eruption close to sea level, and in cases of ancient arc sequences, their intercalation with marine sedimentary rocks. Our study of Cretaceous batholiths in the North American Cordillera resolves the crustal composition paradox because we find that most are not arc-derived as commonly believed; but instead formed during the waning stages of collision and consequent slab failure. Because the batholiths typically have silica contents >60% and are derived directly from the mantle, we argue that they are the missing link in the formation of continental crust. Slab failure magmas worldwide are compositionally similar to tonalite-trondhjemite-granodiorite suites as old as 3.8 Ga, which points to their collective formation by slab failure and long-lived plate tectonics. Our model also provides (1) an alternative solution to interpret compiled detrital zircon arrays, because episodic peaks that coincide with periods of supercontinent amalgamation are easily interpreted to represent collisions with formation of new crust by slab failure; and (2) that models of early whole-earth differentiation are more reasonable than those invoking progressive growth of continental crust.

  2. Crustal thickness and Moho sharpness beneath the Midcontinent rift from receiver functions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Moikwathai Moidaki

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available The Mesoproterozoic Midcontinent rift (MCR in the central US is an approximately 2000 km long, 100 km wide structure from Kansas to Michigan. During the 20-40 million years of rifting, a thick (up to 20 km layer of basaltic lava was deposited in the rift valleys. Quantifying the effects of the rifting and associated volcanic eruptions on the structure and composition of the crust and mantle beneath the MCR is important for the understanding of the evolution of continental lithosphere. In this study we measure the crustal thickness (H, and the sharpness of the Moho (R at about 24 portable and permanent stations in Iowa, Kansas, and South Dakota by stacking Pto- S converted waves (PmS and their multiples (PPmS and PSmS. Under the assumption that the crustal mean velocity in the study area is the same as the IASP91 earth model, we find a significantly thickened crust beneath the MCR of about 53 km. The crustal Vp/Vs ratios increases from about 1.80 off rift to as large as 1.95 within the rift, which corresponds to an increase of Poisson’s ratio from 0.28 to 0.32, suggesting a more mafic crust beneath the MCR. The R measurements are spatially variable and are relatively small in the vicinity of the MCR, indicating the disturbance of the original sharp Moho by the rifting and magmatic intrusion and volcanic eruption.

  3. Ophiolitic basement to the Great Valley forearc basin, California, from seismic and gravity data: Implications for crustal growth at the North American continental margin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godfrey, N.J.; Beaudoin, B.C.; Klemperer, S.L.; Levander, A.; Luetgert, J.; Meltzer, A.; Mooney, W.; Tréhu, A.

    1997-01-01

    The nature of the Great Valley basement, whether oceanic or continental, has long been a source of controversy. A velocity model (derived from a 200-km-long east-west reflection-refraction profile collected south of the Mendocino triple junction, northern California, in 1993), further constrained by density and magnetic models, reveals an ophiolite underlying the Great Valley (Great Valley ophiolite), which in turn is underlain by a westward extension of lower-density continental crust (Sierran affinity material). We used an integrated modeling philosophy, first modeling the seismic-refraction data to obtain a final velocity model, and then modeling the long-wavelength features of the gravity data to obtain a final density model that is constrained in the upper crust by our velocity model. The crustal section of Great Valley ophiolite is 7-8 km thick, and the Great Valley ophiolite relict oceanic Moho is at 11-16 km depth. The Great Valley ophiolite does not extend west beneath the Coast Ranges, but only as far as the western margin of the Great Valley, where the 5-7-km-thick Great Valley ophiolite mantle section dips west into the present-day mantle. There are 16-18 km of lower-density Sierran affinity material beneath the Great Valley ophiolite mantle section, such that a second, deeper, "present-day" continental Moho is at about 34 km depth. At mid-crustal depths, the boundary between the eastern extent of the Great Valley ophiolite and the western extent of Sierran affinity material is a near-vertical velocity and density discontinuity about 80 km east of the western margin of the Great Valley. Our model has important implications for crustal growth at the North American continental margin. We suggest that a thick ophiolite sequence was obducted onto continental material, probably during the Jurassic Nevadan orogeny, so that the Great Valley basement is oceanic crust above oceanic mantle vertically stacked above continental crust and continental mantle.

  4. Depths of Intraplate Indian Ocean Earthquakes from Waveform Modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baca, A. J.; Polet, J.

    2014-12-01

    The Indian Ocean is a region of complex tectonics and anomalous seismicity. The ocean floor in this region exhibits many bathymetric features, most notably the multiple inactive fracture zones within the Wharton Basin and the Ninetyeast Ridge. The 11 April 2012 MW 8.7 and 8.2 strike-slip events that took place in this area are unique because their rupture appears to have extended to a depth where brittle failure, and thus seismic activity, was considered to be impossible. We analyze multiple intraplate earthquakes that have occurred throughout the Indian Ocean to better constrain their focal depths in order to enhance our understanding of how deep intraplate events are occurring and more importantly determine if the ruptures are originating within a ductile regime. Selected events are located within the Indian Ocean away from major plate boundaries. A majority are within the deforming Indo-Australian tectonic plate. Events primarily display thrust mechanisms with some strike-slip or a combination of the two. All events are between MW5.5-6.5. Event selections were handled this way in order to facilitate the analysis of teleseismic waveforms using a point source approximation. From these criteria we gathered a suite of 15 intraplate events. Synthetic seismograms of direct P-waves and depth phases are computed using a 1-D propagator matrix approach and compared with global teleseismic waveform data to determine a best depth for each event. To generate our synthetic seismograms we utilized the CRUST1.0 software, a global crustal model that generates velocity values at the hypocenter of our events. Our waveform analysis results reveal that our depths diverge from the Global Centroid Moment Tensor (GCMT) depths, which underestimate our deep lithosphere events and overestimate our shallow depths by as much as 17 km. We determined a depth of 45km for our deepest event. We will show a comparison of our final earthquake depths with the lithospheric thickness based on

  5. Chemistry and possible resource potential of cobalt rich ferromanganese crust from Afanasiy-Nikitin seamount in the Indian Ocean

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Parthiban, G.; Banakar, V.K.

    , Ni, Co, Zn and V and found to be rich in Co (upto 0.88%) mineralogically, the studied Fe-Mn crust samples contain poorly crystalline d-MnO sub(2) and minor amount of Carbonate Fluorapatite (CFA) and feldspars. The low Mn/Fe ratios (less than 2), d...

  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. Crustal growth of the Izu-Ogasawara arc estimated from structural characteristics of Oligocene arc

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takahashi, N.; Yamashita, M.; Kodaira, S.; Miura, S.; Sato, T.; No, T.; Tatsumi, Y.

    2011-12-01

    Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC) carried out seismic surveys using a multichannel reflection system and ocean bottom seismographs, and we have clarified crustal structures of whole Izu-Ogasawara (Bonin)-Marina (IBM) arc since 2002. These refection images and velocity structures suggest that the crustal evolution in the intra-oceanic island arc accompanies with much interaction of materials between crust and mantle. Slow mantle velocity identified beneath the thick arc crusts suggests that dense crustal materials transformed into the mantle. On the other hand, high velocity lower crust can be seen around the bottom of the crust beneath the rifted region, and it suggests that underplating of mafic materials occurs there. Average crustal production rate of the entire arc is larger than expected one and approximately 200 km3/km/Ma. The production rate of basaltic magmas corresponds to that of oceanic ridge. Repeated crustal differentiation is indispensable to produce much light materials like continental materials, however, the real process cannot still be resolved yet. We, therefore, submitted drilling proposals to obtain in-situ middle crust with P-wave velocity of 6 km/s. In the growth history of the IBM arc, it is known by many papers that boninitic volcanisms preceded current bimodal volcanisms based on basaltic magmas. The current volcanisms accompanied with basaltic magmas have been occurred since Oligocene age, however, the tectonic differences to develop crustal architecture between Oligocene and present are not understood yet. We obtained new refraction/reflection data along an arc strike of N-S in fore-arc region. Then, we estimate crustal structure with severe change of the crustal thickness from refraction data, which are similar to that along the volcanic front. Interval for location of the thick arc crust along N-S is very similar to that along the volcanic front. The refection image indicates that the basement of the fore

  8. Ethane ocean on Titan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lunine, J. I.; Stevenson, D. J.; Yung, Y.L.

    1983-01-01

    Voyager I radio occultation data is employed to develop a qualitative model of an ethane ocean on Titan. It is suggested that the ocean contains 25 percent CH4 and that the ocean is in dynamic equilibrium with an N2 atmosphere. Previous models of a CH4 ocean are discounted due to photolysis rates of CH4 gas. Tidal damping of Titan's orbital eccentricity is taken as evidence for an ocean layer approximately 1 km deep, with the ocean floor being covered with a solid C2H2 layer 100 to 200 m thick. The photolytic process disrupting the CH4, if the estimates of the oceanic content of CH4 are correct, could continue for at least one billion years. Verification of the model is dependent on detecting CH4 clouds in the lower atmosphere, finding C2H6 saturation in the lower troposphere, or obtaining evidence of a global ocean.

  9. Permeability of crust is key to crispness retention

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hirte, A.; Hamer, R.J.; Meinders, M.B.J.; Primo-Martin, C.

    2010-01-01

    Bread loses crispness rapidly after baking because water originating from the wet crumb accumulates in the dry crust. This water accumulation might be increased by the dense and low permeable character of the bread crust. Our objective was to investigate the influence of permeability of the crust on

  10. Seismic Structure of the Oceanic Plate Entering the Central Part of the Japan Trench Obtained from Ocean-Bottom Seismic Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohira, A.; Kodaira, S.; Fujie, G.; No, T.; Nakamura, Y.; Miura, S.

    2017-12-01

    In trench-outer rise regions, the normal faults develop due to the bending of the incoming plate, which cause numerous normal-faulting earthquakes and systematic structural variations toward trenches. In addition to the effects on the bend-related normal fault, structural variations which are interpreted to be attributed to pseudofaults, a fracture zone, and petit-spot volcanic activities are observed in the oceanic plate entering the central part of the Japan Trench, off Miyagi. In May-June 2017, to understand detail structural variations and systematic structural changes of the oceanic plate toward the trench, we conducted an active-source seismic survey off Miyagi using R/V Kaimei, a new research vessel of JAMSTEC. Along a 100 km-long seismic profile which is approximately perpendicular to the trench axis, we deployed 40 ocean-bottom seismometers at intervals of 2 km and fired a large airgun array (total volume 10,600 cubic inches) with 100 m shooting intervals. Multi-channel seismic reflection data were also collected along the profile. On OBS records we observed refractions from the sedimentary layer and the oceanic crust (Pg), wide-angle reflections from the crust-mantle boundary (PmP), and refractions from the uppermost mantle (Pn). Pg is typically observed clearly at near offsets (approximately 20 km) but it highly attenuates at far offsets (> 20 km). A triplication of Pg-PmP-Pn with strong amplitudes is observed at ranges from 30 km to 60 km offsets. Pn is typically weak and its apparent velocity is approximately 8 km/sec. High attenuation of Pg and weak Pn may indicate the complex crustal structure related to petit-spot volcanic activities and/or a fracture zone, which are recognized in bathymetry data around the profile.

  11. Exploring the plutonic crust at a fast-spreading ridge:new drilling at Hess Deep

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gillis, Kathryn M. [Univ. of Victoria, BC (Canada). School of Earth and Ocean Sciences; Snow, Jonathan E. [Univ. of Houston, Houston, TX (United States). Earth & Atmospheric Sciences; Klaus, Adam [Texas A & M Univ., College Station, TX (United States). Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP). United States Implementing Organization.; Guerin, Gilles [Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia Univ., Palisades, NY (United States). Borehole Research Group; Abe, Natsue [Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC), Yokosuka (Japan). Inst. for Research on Earth Evolution (IFREE); Akizawa, Norikatsu [Kanazawa Univ. (Japan). Dept. of Earth Sciences; Ceuleneer, Georges [Univ. Paul Sabatier, Toulouse (France). Observatoire Midi-Pyrenees (UMS 831), CNRS; Cheadle, Michael J. [Univ. of Wyoming, Laramie, WY (United States). Dept. of Geology and Geophysics; Adriao, Alden de Brito [Federal Univ. of Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre (Brazil). Geology Inst. (IGEO); Faak, Kathrin [Ruhr Univ., Bochum (Germany). Geological Inst.; Falloon, Trevor J. [Univ. of Tasmania, Hobart, TAS (Australia). Inst. for Marine and Antarctic Studies; Friedman, Sarah A. [Southern Illinois Univ., Carbondale, IL (United States). Dept. of Geology; Godard, Marguerite M. [Univ. Montpellier II (France). Geosciences Montpellier-UMR 5243; Harigane, Yumiko [National Inst. of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Tsukuba (Japan). Marine Geology Dept.; Horst, Andrew J. [Syracuse Univ., NY (United States). Dept. of Earth Science; Hoshide, Takashi [Tohoku Univ., Sendai (Japan). Graduate School of Science; Ildefonse, Benoit [Univ. Montpellier II (France). Lab. de Tectonophysique; Jean, Marlon M. [Northern Illinois Univ., DeKalb, IL (United States). Dept. of Geology and Environmental Geosciences; John, Barbara E. [Univ. of Wyoming, Laramie, WY (United States). Dept. of Geology and Geophysics; Koepke, Juergen H. [Univ. of Hannover (Germany). Inst. of Mineralogy; Machi, Sumiaki [Kanazawa Univ. (Japan). Dept. of Earth Sciences; Maeda, Jinichiro [Hokkaido Univ., Sapporo (Japan). Dept. of Natural History Sciences; Marks, Naomi E. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States). Chemistry and Material Sciences Dept.; McCaig, Andrew M. [Univ. of Leeds (United Kingdom). School of Earth and Environment; Meyer, Romain [Univ. of Bergen (Norway). Dept. of Earth Science and Centre for Geobiology; Morris, Antony [Univ. of Plymouth (United Kingdom). School of Earth, Ocean & Environmental Sciences; Nozaka, Toshio [Okayama Univ. (Japan). Dept. of Earth Sciences; Python, Marie [Hokkaido Univ., Sapporo (Japan). Dept. of Earth and Planetary Sciences; Saha, Abhishek [Indian Inst. of Science (IISC), Bangalore (India). Centre for Earth Sciences; Wintsch, Robert P. [Indiana Univ., Bloomington, IN (United States). Dept. of Geological Sciences

    2013-02-28

    Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP) Hess Deep Expedition 345 was designed to sample lower crustal primitive gabbroic rocks that formed at the fast-spreading East Pacific Rise (EPR) in order to test models of magmatic accretion and the intensity of hydrothermal cooling at depth. The Hess Deep Rift was selected to exploit tectonic exposures of young EPR plutonic crust, building upon results from ODP Leg 147 as well as more recent submersible, remotely operated vehicle, and near-bottom surveys. The primary goal was to acquire the observations required to test end-member crustal accretion models that were in large part based on relationships from ophiolites, in combination with mid-ocean ridge geophysical studies. This goal was achieved with the recovery of primitive layered olivine gabbros and troctolites with many unexpected mineralogical and textural relationships, such as the abundance of orthopyroxene and the preservation of delicate skeletal olivine textures.

  12. Mars - Crustal structure inferred from Bouguer gravity anomalies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, R. J.; Saunders, R. S.; Conel, J. E.

    1973-01-01

    Bouguer gravity has been computed for the equatorial region of Mars by differencing free air gravity and the gravity predicted from topographic variations. The free air gravity was generated from an eighth-order set of spherical harmonic coefficients. The gravity from topographic variations was generated by integrating a two-dimensional Green's function over each contour level. The Bouguer gravity indicates crustal inhomogeneities on Mars that are postulated to be variations in crustal thickness. The Tharsis ridge is a region of thick continental type crust. The gravity data, structural patterns, topography, and surface geology of this region lead to the interpretation of the Tharsis topographic high as a broad crustal upwarp possibly associated with local formation of lower-density crustal material and subsequent rise of a thicker crust. The Amazonis region is one of several basins of relatively thin crust, analogous to terrestrial ocean basins. The Libya and Hellas basins, which are probable impact features, are also underlain by thin crust and are possible regions of mantle upwelling.

  13. Turf algal epiphytes metabolically induce local pH increase, with implications for underlying coralline algae under ocean acidification

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Short, J.A.; Pedersen, Ole; Kendrick, G.A.

    2015-01-01

    The presence of epiphytic turf algae may modify the effects of ocean acidification on coralline algal calcification rates by altering seawater chemistry within the diffusive boundary layer (DBL) above coralline algal crusts. We used microelectrodes to measure the effects of turf algal epiphytes...... on seawater pH and the partial pressure of oxygen (pO2) within the DBL at the surface of Hydrolithoideae coralline algal crusts under ambient (36 Pa) CO2 and an ocean acidification scenario with elevated CO2 (200 Pa). Turf algae significantly increased the mean diel amplitude of pH and pO2, and this effect...... was more pronounced under elevated CO2. We suggest that increases in seawater CO2 under ocean acidification conditions may drive an increase in the abundance of epiphytic turf algae, consequently modifying the chemistry within the DBL. Thus, the effect of epiphytic turf algae on microscale pH is striking...

  14. Effect of nano-silver hydrogel coating film on deep partial thickness scald model of rabbit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xi, Peng; Li, Yan; Ge, Xiaojin; Liu, Dandan; Miao, Mingsan

    2018-05-01

    Observing the effect of nano-silver hydrogel coating film on deep partial thickness scald model of rabbit. We prepared boiling water scalded rabbits with deep II degree scald models and applied high, medium and low doses of nano-silver hydrogel coating film for different time and area. Then we compared the difference of burned paper weight before administration and after administration model burns, burn local skin irritation points infection, skin crusting and scabs from the time, and the impact of local skin tissue morphology. Rabbits deep II degree burn model successful modeling; on day 12, 18, high, medium and low doses of nano-silver hydrogel coating film significantly reduced skin irritation of rabbits infected with the integral value ( P  film group significantly decreased skin irritation, infection integral value ( P  film significantly reduced film rabbits' scalded skin crusting time ( P  film on the deep partial thickness burns has a significant therapeutic effect; external use has a significant role in wound healing.

  15. A relatively reduced Hadean continental crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Xiaozhi; Gaillard, Fabrice; Scaillet, Bruno

    2014-05-01

    Among the physical and chemical parameters used to characterize the Earth, oxidation state, as reflected by its prevailing oxygen fugacity (fO2), is a particularly important one. It controls many physicochemical properties and geological processes of the Earth's different reservoirs, and affects the partitioning of elements between coexisting phases and the speciation of degassed volatiles in melts. In the past decades, numerous studies have been conducted to document the evolution of mantle and atmospheric oxidation state with time and in particular the possible transition from an early reduced state to the present oxidized conditions. So far, it has been established that the oxidation state of the uppermost mantle is within ±2 log units of the quartz-fayalite-magnetite (QFM) buffer, probably back to ~4.4 billion years ago (Ga) based on trace-elements studies of mantle-derived komatiites, kimberlites, basalts, volcanics and zircons, and that the O2 levels of atmosphere were initially low and rose markedly ~2.3 Ga known as the Great Oxidation Event (GOE), progressively reaching its present oxidation state of ~10 log units above QFM. In contrast, the secular evolution of oxidation state of the continental crust, an important boundary separating the underlying upper mantle from the surrounding atmosphere and buffering the exchanges and interactions between the Earth's interior and exterior, has rarely been addressed, although the presence of evolved crustal materials on the Earth can be traced back to ~4.4 Ga, e.g. by detrital zircons. Zircon is a common accessory mineral in nature, occurring in a wide variety of igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic rocks, and is almost ubiquitous in crustal rocks. The physical and chemical durability of zircons makes them widely used in geochemical studies in terms of trace-elements, isotopes, ages and melt/mineral inclusions; in particular, zircons are persistent under most crustal conditions and can survive many secondary

  16. A three-dimensional geophysical model of the crust in the Barents Sea region: Model construction and basement characterization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ritzmann, O.; Maercklin, N.; Inge, Faleide J.; Bungum, H.; Mooney, W.D.; Detweiler, S.T.

    2007-01-01

    BARENTS50, a new 3-D geophysical model of the crust in the Barents Sea Region has been developed by the University of Oslo, NORSAR and the U.S. Geological Survey. The target region comprises northern Norway and Finland, parts of the Kola Peninsula and the East European lowlands. Novaya Zemlya, the Kara Sea and Franz-Josef Land terminate the region to the east, while the Norwegian-Greenland Sea marks the western boundary. In total, 680 1-D seismic velocity profiles were compiled, mostly by sampling 2-D seismic velocity transects, from seismic refraction profiles. Seismic reflection data in the western Barents Sea were further used for density modelling and subsequent density-to-velocity conversion. Velocities from these profiles were binned into two sedimentary and three crystalline crustal layers. The first step of the compilation comprised the layer-wise interpolation of the velocities and thicknesses. Within the different geological provinces of the study region, linear relationships between the thickness of the sedimentary rocks and the thickness of the remaining crystalline crust are observed. We therefore, used the separately compiled (area-wide) sediment thickness data to adjust the total crystalline crustal thickness according to the total sedimentary thickness where no constraints from 1-D velocity profiles existed. The BARENTS50 model is based on an equidistant hexagonal grid with a node spacing of 50 km. The P-wave velocity model was used for gravity modelling to obtain 3-D density structure. A better fit to the observed gravity was achieved using a grid search algorithm which focussed on the density contrast of the sediment-basement interface. An improvement compared to older geophysical models is the high resolution of 50 km. Velocity transects through the 3-D model illustrate geological features of the European Arctic. The possible petrology of the crystalline basement in western and eastern Barents Sea is discussed on the basis of the observed seismic

  17. IODP Expedition 301 Installs Three Borehole Crustal Observatories, Prepares for Three-Dimensional, Cross-Hole Experiments in the Northeastern Pacific Ocean

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam Klaus

    2005-09-01

    Full Text Available Introduction and Goals The basaltic upper oceanic crust comprises the largestaquifer on Earth, containing a volume of water about equalto that currently stored in ice sheets and glaciers. Annualfluid fluxes through the upper oceanic crust are at leastas large as the global river flux to the ocean. Much of theseafloor is hydrogeologically active, but the majority ofthe fluid flow within oceanic crust occurs on ridge flanks,regions located kilometers or more from active seafloorspreading centers. Fluid circulation in these areas is drivenmainly by lithospheric heat rising from deep within theplate but is influenced by seafloor and basement topography,seismic and tectonic events, and tides.Subseaf loor f luid f low on ridge f lanks inf luences adiverse array of processes and properties, including thethermal state and evolution of oceanic plates, alteration ofthe lithosphere and crustal pore waters, establishment andmaintenance of vast subseaf loor microbial ecosystems,and diagenetic, seismic, and magmatic activity along plateboundaryfaults. Although numerous drilling expeditionsand surface and submersible surveys over the last severaldecades have focused on hydrogeologic phenomena, we stillknow relatively little about driving forces, property distributions,scales of flow, rates of flow, extent of compartmentalizationor isolation of distinct fluid-rock systems, or linksbetween hydrogeologic, geochemical, microbiological, andgeophysical processes. Progress through drilling has beenlimited in the past by the perturbing effects of boreholecreation on subseafloor thermal, pressure, chemical, andbiological conditions. Subseafloor observatories addressthis challenge by allowing the formation to recover fromdrilling perturbations, and also allow scientists to runpassive and active experiments for years to decades.IODP Expedition 301 was part of a multi-disciplinaryprogram designed to evaluate the formation-scale hydrogeologicproperties within oceanic crust

  18. Dacite petrogenesis on mid-ocean ridges: Evidence for oceanic crustal melting and assimilation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wanless, V.D.; Perfit, M.R.; Ridley, W.I.; Klein, E.

    2010-01-01

    Whereas the majority of eruptions at oceanic spreading centers produce lavas with relatively homogeneous mid-ocean ridge basalt (MORB) compositions, the formation of tholeiitic andesites and dacites at mid-ocean ridges (MORs) is a petrological enigma. Eruptions of MOR high-silica lavas are typically associated with ridge discontinuities and have produced regionally significant volumes of lava. Andesites and dacites have been observed and sampled at several locations along the global MOR system; these include propagating ridge tips at ridge-transform intersections on the Juan de Fuca Ridge and eastern Gal??pagos spreading center, and at the 9??N overlapping spreading center on the East Pacific Rise. Despite the formation of these lavas at various ridges, MOR dacites show remarkably similar major element trends and incompatible trace element enrichments, suggesting that similar processes are controlling their chemistry. Although most geochemical variability in MOR basalts is consistent with low-pressure fractional crystallization of various mantle-derived parental melts, our geochemical data for MOR dacitic glasses suggest that contamination from a seawater-altered component is important in their petrogenesis. MOR dacites are characterized by elevated U, Th, Zr, and Hf, low Nb and Ta concentrations relative to rare earth elements (REE), and Al2O3, K2O, and Cl concentrations that are higher than expected from low-pressure fractional crystallization alone. Petrological modeling of MOR dacites suggests that partial melting and assimilation are both integral to their petrogenesis. Extensive fractional crystallization of a MORB parent combined with partial melting and assimilation of amphibole-bearing altered crust produces a magma with a geochemical signature similar to a MOR dacite. This supports the hypothesis that crustal assimilation is an important process in the formation of highly evolved MOR lavas and may be significant in the generation of evolved MORB in

  19. Formation and Thermal Infrared Spectroscopy of Halite Crusts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baldridge, A. M.; Christensen, P. R.

    2003-12-01

    Efflorescent salt crusts form as groundwater evaporates from capillary updraw of brine through sediment. Salts precipitate at the surface, coating and cementing the upper few layers of sediment. If enough brine is present to completely saturate and pond on top of the surface, halite will precipitate at the surface of the brine and settle out as layers of crystalline salt on top of the sediment. In playa environments, salts such as sulfates, carbonates and halides, and forms such crusts. In remote sensing studies of such surfaces, it is important to understand how the presence of salt crusts affects the spectral features of the surrounding sediment. This is especially true when the crusts form from a non-absorbing salt such as halite. Halite has been observed to exhibit unusual spectral properties in the thermal infrared. Specifically, granular mixtures of minerals with halite produced spectra in which the spectral features inverted form reflectivity, shifted to shorter wavelengths and the spectral contrast increased near absorption bands. However, in crusted surfaces, in which the halite cements, coats or overlays the mineral grains, the presence of halite has a different affect on the spectra. This work will examine the precipitation of halite and the formation of salt crusts for several sediment and brine mixtures. Laboratory measurements of thermal emission spectra for the crusts will be compared to previous studies for particulate mixtures of halite with minerals and well as to natural surface crusts. Detailed knowledge of such surfaces will allow for their discrimination and identification in terrestrial playa settings as well as in paleo-environments on Mars.

  20. Heat-flow and lateral seismic-velocity heterogeneities near Deep Sea Drilling Project-Ocean Drilling Program Site 504

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lowell, Robert P.; Stephen, Ralph A.

    1991-11-01

    Both conductive heat-flow and seismic-velocity data contain information relating to the permeability of the oceanic crust. Deep Sea Drilling Project-Ocean Drilling Program Site 504 is the only place where both detailed heat-flow and seismic-velocity field studies have been conducted at the same scale. In this paper we examine the correlation between heat flow and lateral heterogeneities in seismic velocity near Site 504. Observed heterogeneities in seismic velocity, which are thought to be related to variations in crack density in the upper 500 m of the basaltic crust, show little correlation with the heat-flow pattern. This lack of correlation highlights some of the current difficulties in using seismic-velocity data to infer details of spatial variations in permeability that are significant in controlling hydrothermal circulation.

  1. The ``Perrier Oceans'' Of Europa And Enceladus (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matson, D.; Johnson, T. V.; Lunine, J. I.; Castillo, J. C.

    2010-12-01

    Icy satellites of the outer solar system can have subsurface oceans that contain significant amounts of dissolved gases. Crawford and Stevenson in their 1988 study of Europa introduced the term “Perrier Ocean” as a descriptive appellation for such situations. When pressure is reduced, for example as a consequence of faulting, over water from a Perrier ocean, gas comes out of solution in the form of bubbles. The density of the liquid is immediately reduced, and if the bubble volume is sufficient the fluid can become buoyant with respect to the icy crust. If so, the seawater-bubble mixture can rise to the surface or very near to the surface. Europa and Enceladus may represent the end-member examples of Perrier oceans. Today, Europa appears passive whereas Enceladus is erupting. Some characteristics seen at Enceladus that may be indicative of an active Perrier ocean are eruptive plumes and localized, relatively warm (“hot-spot”) thermal anomalies of significantly high heat flow (i.e., >15 GW of integrated power over Enceladus’ South Polar Region). Since Enceladus is smaller than Europa it is easier for it to erupt because less work has to be done against gravity to bring water to the surface. Crawford and Stevenson found that under today’s conditions eruptions at Europa would be difficult but not necessarily impossible. However, in the past, when the icy crust was thinner, the interior warmer, eruption of liquid to the surface regions could have been easier. Morphological evidence for past eruptions from a Perrier ocean is not necessarily unambiguous in that it may admit alternate interpretations. However, the best evidence for relatively recent activity may be some sort of thermal signature. Such anomalies may be observable to depths of tens of meters in relatively clean ice by space-borne high-precision microwave radiometry and ground-penetrating radar. This work was conducted at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology under

  2. Paleomagnetism continents and oceans

    CERN Document Server

    McElhinny, Michael W; Dmowska, Renata; Holton, James R; Rossby, H Thomas

    1999-01-01

    Paleomagnetism is the study of the fossil magnetism in rocks. It has been paramount in determining that the continents have drifted over the surface of the Earth throughout geological time. The fossil magnetism preserved in the ocean floor has demonstrated how continental drift takes place through the process of sea-floor spreading. The methods and techniques used in paleomagnetic studies of continental rocks and of the ocean floor are described and then applied to determining horizontal movements of the Earth''s crust over geological time. An up-to-date review of global paleomagnetic data enables 1000 millionyears of Earth history to be summarized in terms of the drift of the major crustal blocks over the surface of the Earth. The first edition of McElhinny''s book was heralded as a "classic and definitive text." It thoroughly discussed the theory of geomagnetism, the geologicreversals of the Earth''s magnetic field, and the shifting of magnetic poles. In the 25 years since the highly successful first editio...

  3. Oceanic crustal velocities from laboratory and logging measurements of Integrated Ocean Drilling Program Hole 1256D

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilbert, Lisa A.; Salisbury, Matthew H.

    2011-09-01

    Drilling and logging of Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP) Hole 1256D have provided a unique opportunity for systematically studying a fundamental problem in marine geophysics: What influences the seismic structure of oceanic crust, porosity or composition? Compressional wave velocities (Vp) logged in open hole or from regional refraction measurements integrate both the host rock and cracks in the crust. To determine the influence of cracks on Vp at several scales, we first need an accurate ground truth in the form of laboratory Vp on crack-free, or nearly crack-free samples. We measured Vp on 46 water-saturated samples at in situ pressures to determine the baseline velocities of the host rock. These new results match or exceed Vp logs throughout most of the hole, especially in the lower dikes and gabbros, where porosities are low. In contrast, samples measured at sea under ambient laboratory conditions, had consistently lower Vp than the Vp logs, even after correction to in situ pressures. Crack-free Vp calculated from simple models of logging and laboratory porosity data for different lithologies and facies suggest that crustal velocities in the lavas and upper dikes are controlled by porosity. In particular, the models demonstrate significant large-scale porosity in the lavas, especially in the sections identified as fractured flows and breccias. However, crustal velocities in the lower dikes and gabbros are increasingly controlled by petrology as the layer 2-3 boundary is approached.

  4. 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

  5. Late Precambrian Balkan-Carpathian ophiolite — a slice of the Pan-African ocean crust?: geochemical and tectonic insights from the Tcherni Vrah and Deli Jovan massifs, Bulgaria and Serbia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Savov, Ivan; Ryan, Jeff; Haydoutov, Ivan; Schijf, Johan

    2001-10-01

    The Balkan-Carpathian ophiolite (BCO), which outcrops in Bulgaria, Serbia and Romania, is a Late Precambrian (563 Ma) mafic/ultramafic complex unique in that it has not been strongly deformed or metamorphosed, as have most other basement sequences in Alpine Europe. Samples collected for study from the Tcherni Vrah and Deli Jovan segments of BCO include cumulate dunites, troctolites, wehrlites and plagioclase wehrlites; olivine and amphibole-bearing gabbros; anorthosites; diabases and microgabbros; and basalts representing massive flows, dikes, and pillow lavas, as well as hyaloclastites and umbers (preserved sedimentary cover). Relict Ol, Cpx and Hbl in cumulate peridotites indicate original orthocumulate textures. Plagioclase in troctolites and anorthosites range from An60 to An70. Cumulate gabbro textures range from ophitic to poikilitic, with an inferred crystallization order of Ol-(Plag+Cpx)-Hbl. The extrusive rocks exhibit poikilitic, ophitic and intersertal textures, with Cpx and/or Plag (Oligoclase-Andesine) phenocrysts. The major opaques are Ti-Magnetite and Ilmenite. The metamorphic paragenesis in the mafic samples is Chl-Trem-Ep, whereas the ultramafic rocks show variable degrees of serpentinization, with lizardite and antigorite as dominant phases. Our samples are compositionally and geochemically similar to modern oceanic crust. Major element, trace element and rare earth element (REE) signatures in BCO basalts are comparable to those of MORB. In terms of basalt and dike composition, the BCO is a 'high-Ti' or 'oceanic' ophiolite, based on the classification scheme of Serri [Earth Planet. Sci. Lett. 52 (1981) 203]. Our petrologic and geochemical results, combined with the tectonic position of the BCO massifs (overlain by and in contact with Late Cambrian island arc and back-arc sequences), suggest that the BCO may have formed in a mid-ocean ridge setting. If the BCO records the existence of a Precambrian ocean basin, then there may be a relationship

  6. New ichthyoliths from ferromanganese crusts and nodules from the Central Indian Ocean Basin

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Gupta, S.M.

    Ferromanganese encrusted hardgrounds, their intraclasts and the nuclei of manganese nodules collected from the Central Indian Ocean basin have yielded plentiful numbers of ichthyoliths. Forty well-knon ichthyoliths, one new type and 35 new subtypes...

  7. Crustal structure of the southeast Greenland margin from joint refraction and reflection seismic tomography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korenaga, J.; Holbrook, W. S.; Kent, G. M.; Kelemen, P. B.; Detrick, R. S.; Larsen, H.-C.; Hopper, J. R.; Dahl-Jensen, T.

    2000-09-01

    We present results from a combined multichannel seismic reflection (MCS) and wideangle onshore/offshore seismic experiment conducted in 1996 across the southeast Greenland continental margin. A new seismic tomographic method is developed to jointly invert refraction and reflection travel times for a two-dimensional velocity structure. We employ a hybrid ray-tracing scheme based on the graph method and the local ray-bending refinement to efficiently obtain an accurate forward solution, and we employ smoothing and optional damping constraints to regularize an iterative inversion. We invert 2318 Pg and 2078 PmP travel times to construct a compressional velocity model for the 350-km-long transect, and a long-wavelength structure with strong lateral heterogeneity is recovered, including (1) ˜30-km-thick, undeformed continental crust with a velocity of 6.0 to 7.0 km/s near the landward end, (2) 30- to 15-km-thick igneous crust within a 150-km-wide continent-ocean transition zone, and (3) 15- to 9-km-thick oceanic crust toward the seaward end. The thickness of the igneous upper crust characterized by a high-velocity gradient also varies from 6 km within the transition zone to ˜3 km seaward. The bottom half of the lower crust generally has a velocity higher than 7.0 km/s, reaching a maximum of 7.2 to 7.5 km/s at the Moho. A nonlinear Monte Carlo uncertainty analysis is performed to estimate the a posteriori model variance, showing that most velocity and depth nodes are well determined with one standard deviation of 0.05-0.10 km/s and 0.25-1.5 km, respectively. Despite significant variation in crustal thickness, the mean velocity of the igneous crust, which serves as a proxy for the bulk crustal composition, is surprisingly constant (˜7.0 km/s) along the transect. On the basis of a mantle melting model incorporating the effect of active mantle upwelling, this velocity-thickness relationship is used to constrain the mantle melting process during the breakup of Greenland

  8. Black manganese-rich crusts on a Gothic cathedral

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macholdt, Dorothea S.; Herrmann, Siegfried; Jochum, Klaus Peter; Kilcoyne, A. L. David; Laubscher, Thomas; Pfisterer, Jonas H. K.; Pöhlker, Christopher; Schwager, Beate; Weber, Bettina; Weigand, Markus; Domke, Katrin F.; Andreae, Meinrat O.

    2017-12-01

    Black manganese-rich crusts are found worldwide on the façades of historical buildings. In this study, they were studied exemplarily on the façade of the Freiburger Münster (Freiburg Minster), Germany, and measured in-situ by portable X-ray fluorescence (XRF). The XRF was calibrated to allow the conversion from apparent mass fractions to Mn surface density (Mn mass per area), to compensate for the fact that portable XRF mass fraction measurements from thin layers violate the assumption of a homogeneous measurement volume. Additionally, 200-nm femtosecond laser ablation-inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (fs LA-ICP-MS) measurements, scanning transmission X-ray microscopy-near edge X-ray absorption fine structure spectroscopy (STXM-NEXAFS), Raman spectroscopy, and imaging by light microscopy were conducted to obtain further insight into the crust material, such as potential biogenic contributions, element distributions, trace element compositions, and organic functional groups. While black crusts of various types are present at many places on the minster's facade, crusts rich in Mn (with a Mn surface density >150 μg cm-2) are restricted to a maximum height of about 7 m. The only exceptions are those developed on the Renaissance-Vorhalle (Renaissance Portico) at a height of about 8 m. This part of the façade had been cleaned and treated with a silicon resin as recently as 2003. These crusts thus accumulated over a period of only 12 years. Yet, they are exceptionally Mn-rich with a surface density of 1200 μg cm-2, and therefore require an accumulation rate of about 100 μg cm-2 Mn per year. Trace element analyses support the theory that vehicle emissions are responsible for most of the Mn supply. Lead, barium, and zinc correlate with manganese, indicating that tire material, brake pads, and resuspended road dust are likely to be the element sources. Microscopic investigations show no organisms on or in the Mn-rich crusts. In contrast, Mn-free black

  9. An Approach to the Crustal Thickness Inversion Problem

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Marchi, F.; Di Achille, G.

    2017-12-01

    We describe a method to estimate the crustal thickness of a planet and we apply it to Venus. As in the method of (Parker, 1972), modified by (Wieczorek & Phillips, 1998), the gravity field anomalies of a planet are assumed to be due to the combined effect of topography and relief on the crust-mantle interface. No assumptions on isostasy are necessary. In our case, rather than using the expansion of the powers of the relief in Taylor series, we model the gravitational field of topography/relief by means of a large number of prism-shaped masses covering the whole surface of the planet. Under the hypothesis that crustal and mantle densities are the same everywhere, we solve for the relief depths on the crust-mantle interface by imposing that observed and modeled gravity field at a certain reference spherical surface (external to the planet) must be equal. This method can be extended to the case of non-uniform densities. Finally, we calculate a map of the crustal thickness of Venus and compare our results with those predicted by previous work and with the global distribution of main geological features (e.g. rift zones, tesserae, coronae). We discuss the agremeent between our results and the main geodynamical and crustal models put forth to explain the origin of such features and the applicability of this method in the context of the mission VOX (Venus Origins Explore), proposed for NASA's NF4 call.

  10. A ~400 ka supra-Milankovitch cycle in the Na, Mg, Pb, Ni, and Co records of a ferromanganese crust from the Vityaz fracture zone, central Indian ridge.

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Banerjee, R.; Gupta, S.M.; Miura, H.; Borole, D.V.

    A approx. 400 ka (kilo years) supra-Milankovitch cycle, recorded in the sodium, magnesium, lead, nickel and cobalt contents of a 32mm thick ferromanganese crust from Vityaz fracture zone, central Indian ridge is reported here. To arrive...

  11. Using Deep-Sea Scientific Drilling to Enhance Ocean Science Literacy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Passow, Michael; Cooper, Sharon; Kurtz, Nicole; Burgio, Marion; Cicconi, Alessia

    2017-04-01

    International Ocean Discovery Program continues to offer annual School of Rock professional development workshops to which educators can apply for participation. During these all-expense paid experiences, they learn about IODP science and develop new activities for their audiences. Cicconi and Passow will describe their experiences during some of these programs. European teachers have also participated in "teacher-at-sea" programs sponsored by ECORD aboard the JOIDES Resolution. Burgio participated in Expedition 360 from December 2015 to the end of January 2016 (http://joidesresolution.org/node/4253). This cruise focused on the global effort to drill to the Moho through the Southwest Indian Ridge. As they drilled down to the Moho, scientists obtained new discoveries about life in the crust, interactions between water and rocks, and magmatic processes that build the oceanic crust at very slow spreading ridges. The Education Officers team used a panel of strategies to communicate during the efforts during their two months onboard. She used social media and live-streaming to share the last discoveries about the oceanic crust with students all over the world. Additional materials have been created by teachers and other non-science participants from many countries across the globe. Educational outreach programs associated with scientific ocean drilling provide effective opportunities to enhance Ocean Science Literacy.

  12. Global model for the lithospheric strength and effective elastic thickness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tesauro, Magdala; Kaban, Mikhail K.; Cloetingh, Sierd A. P. L.

    2013-08-01

    Global distribution of the strength and effective elastic thickness (Te) of the lithosphere are estimated using physical parameters from recent crustal and lithospheric models. For the Te estimation we apply a new approach, which provides a possibility to take into account variations of Young modulus (E) within the lithosphere. In view of the large uncertainties affecting strength estimates, we evaluate global strength and Te distributions for possible end-member 'hard' (HRM) and a 'soft' (SRM) rheology models of the continental crust. Temperature within the lithosphere has been estimated using a recent tomography model of Ritsema et al. (2011), which has much higher horizontal resolution than previous global models. Most of the strength is localized in the crust for the HRM and in the mantle for the SRM. These results contribute to the long debates on applicability of the "crème brulée" or "jelly-sandwich" model for the lithosphere structure. Changing from the SRM to HRM turns most of the continental areas from the totally decoupled mode to the fully coupled mode of the lithospheric layers. However, in the areas characterized by a high thermal regime and thick crust, the layers remain decoupled even for the HRM. At the same time, for the inner part of the cratons the lithospheric layers are coupled in both models. Therefore, rheological variations lead to large changes in the integrated strength and Te distribution in the regions characterized by intermediate thermal conditions. In these areas temperature uncertainties have a greater effect, since this parameter principally determines rheological behavior. Comparison of the Te estimates for both models with those determined from the flexural loading and spectral analysis shows that the 'hard' rheology is likely applicable for cratonic areas, whereas the 'soft' rheology is more representative for young orogens.

  13. Magnetic field effects on the crust structure of neutron stars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franzon, B.; Negreiros, R.; Schramm, S.

    2017-12-01

    We study the effects of high magnetic fields on the structure and on the geometry of the crust in neutron stars. We find that the crust geometry is substantially modified by the magnetic field inside the star. We build stationary and axis-symmetric magnetized stellar models by using well-known equations of state to describe the neutron star crust, namely, the Skyrme model for the inner crust and the Baym-Pethick-Sutherland equation of state for the outer crust. We show that the magnetic field has a dual role, contributing to the crust deformation via the electromagnetic interaction (manifested in this case as the Lorentz force) and by contributing to curvature due to the energy stored in it. We also study a direct consequence of the crust deformation due to the magnetic field: the thermal relaxation time. This quantity, which is of great importance to the thermal evolution of neutron stars, is sensitive to the crust properties, and, as such, we show that it may be strongly affected by the magnetic field.

  14. Crustal structure variations along the NW-African continental margin: a comparison of new and existing models from wide angle and reflection seismic data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biari, Y.; Klingelhoefer, F.; Sahabi, M.; Aslanian, D.; Philippe, S.; Louden, K. E.; Berglar, K.; Moulin, M.; Mehdi, K.; Graindorge, D.; Evain, M.; Benabellouahed, M.; Reichert, C. J.

    2014-12-01

    Deep seismic data represent a key to understand the geometry and mechanism of continental rifting. The passive continental margin of NW-Africa is one of the oldest on earth, formed during the Upper Triassic-Lower Liassic rifting of the central Atlantic Ocean over 200 Ma. We present new and existing wide-angle and reflection seismic data from three study regions along the margin located in the North Moroccan salt basin, on the central continental margin offshore Safi and in the south, offshore Dakhla. In each of the study areas several combined wide-angle and reflection seismic profiles perpendicular and parallel to the margin have been acquired and forward modelled using comparable methods. The thickness of unthinned continental crust decreases from 36 km in the North to about 27 km in the South. In the North Moroccan Basin continental crust thins from originally 36 km to about 8 km in a 150 km wide zone. The basin itself is underlain by highly thinned continental crust. Offshore safi thinning of the continental crust is confined to a 130 km wide zone with no neighboring sedimentary basin underlain by continental crust. In both areas the zone of crustal thinning is characterised by the presence of large blocks and abundant salt diapirs. In the south crustal thinning is more rapid in a zone of 90 km and asymmetric with the upper crust thinning more closely to the continent than the lower crust, probably due to depth-dependent stretching and the presence of the precambrian Reguibat Ridge on land. Oceanic crust is characterised by a thickness of 7-8 km along the complete margin. Relatively high velocities of up to 7.5 km/s have been imaged between magnetic anomalies S1 and M25, and are probably related to changes in the spreading velocities at the time of the Kimmeridgian/Tithonian plate reorganisation. Volcanic activity seems to be confined to the region next to the Canary Islands, and is thus not related to the initial opening of the oceanic, which was related to no

  15. The potential roles of biological soil crusts in dryland hydrologic cycles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belnap, J.

    2006-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs) are the dominant living cover in many drylands of the world. They possess many features that can influence different aspects of local hydrologic cycles, including soil porosity, absorptivity, roughness, aggregate stability, texture, pore formation, and water retention. The influence of biological soil crusts on these factors depends on their internal and external structure, which varies with climate, soil, and disturbance history. This paper presents the different types of biological soil crusts, discusses how crust type likely influences various aspects of the hydrologic cycle, and reviews what is known and not known about the influence of biological crusts on sediment production and water infiltration versus runoff in various drylands around the world. Most studies examining the effect of biological soil crusts on local hydrology are done by comparing undisturbed sites with those recently disturbed by the researchers. Unfortunately, this greatly complicates interpretation of the results. Applied disturbances alter many soil features such as soil texture, roughness, aggregate stability, physical crusting, porosity, and bulk density in ways that would not necessarily be the same if crusts were not naturally present. Combined, these studies show little agreement on how biological crusts affect water infiltration or runoff. However, when studies are separated by biological crust type and utilize naturally occurring differences among these types, results indicate that biological crusts in hyperarid regions reduce infiltration and increase runoff, have mixed effects in and regions, and increase infiltration and reduce runoff in semiarid cool and cold drylands. However, more studies are needed before broad generalizations can be made on how biological crusts affect infiltration and runoff. We especially need studies that control for sub-surface soil features such as bulk density, micro- and macropores, and biological crust structure. Unlike

  16. Europa the ocean moon : search for an alien biosphere

    CERN Document Server

    Greenberg, Richard

    2004-01-01

    Europa - The Ocean Moon tells the story of the Galileo spacecraft probe to Jupiter's moon, Europa. It provides a detailed description of the physical processes, including the dominating tidal forces that operate on Europa, and includes a comprehensive tour of Europa using images taken by Galileo's camera. The book reviews and evaluates the interpretative work carried out to date, providing a philosophical discussion of the scientific process of analyzing results and the pitfalls that accompany it. It also examines the astrobiological constraints on this possible biosphere, and implications for future research, exploration and planetary biological protection. Europa - The Ocean Moon provides a unique understanding of the Galileo images of Europa, discusses the theory of tidal processes that govern its icy ridged and disrupted surface, and examines in detail the physical setting that might sustain extra-terrestrial life in Europa's ocean and icy crust.

  17. Thin Crust and High Crustal Vp/Vs beneath the Central Armenia Plateau of the Lesser Caucasus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tseng, T. L.; Lin, C. M.; Huang, B. S.; Karakhanyan, A.

    2017-12-01

    Armenia volcanic highland is part of the Lesser Caucasus directly connected with the East Anatolian Plateau to the west and Iranian Plateau to the east. Abundant Quaternary volcanoes in Armenia are the youngest among those associated with post-collision of Arabia-Eurasian since Miocene ( 11 Ma). In this study, teleseismic receiver functions were analyzed from a temporary array to constrain the crustal structures under Armenia and the vicinity. The results show that the Moho depth is shallowest beneath central Armenia where the estimated crustal thickness is 32 km with high averaged crustal Vp/Vs of 1.8-2.0 using H-κ technique. The high crustal Vp/Vs is distributed in a wider area but thin crust is confined more locally around stratovolcano Aragats, whose last eruption was about 0.5 Ma. High crustal Vp/Vs value approaching to 2.1 is found near East of volcano Ghegam complex and NW of volcano Ararat with last dated ages of 0.5 and <0.1 Ma, respectively. Such high Vp/Vs (2.0) cannot be explained without high mafic content and the presence of partial melt in the crust. The 1-D velocity models inverted demonstrate that the partial melt is more likely in the low-velocity layer of the lower crust. To support the unusually thin crust in central Armenia, it requires additional thermal buoyancy in the uppermost mantle which is consistent with regionally low Pn velocity found in previous studies. We propose that the volcanism here is facilitated by the stretches of lithosphere.

  18. Arc-continent collision and the formation of continental crust: A new geochemical and isotopic record from the Ordovician Tyrone Igneous Complex, Ireland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Draut, Amy E.; Clift, Peter D.; Amato, Jeffrey M.; Blusztajn, Jerzy; Schouten, Hans

    2009-01-01

    Collisions between oceanic island-arc terranes and passive continental margins are thought to have been important in the formation of continental crust throughout much of Earth's history. Magmatic evolution during this stage of the plate-tectonic cycle is evident in several areas of the Ordovician Grampian-Taconic orogen, as we demonstrate in the first detailed geochemical study of the Tyrone Igneous Complex, Ireland. New U-Pb zircon dating yields ages of 493 2 Ma from a primitive mafic intrusion, indicating intra-oceanic subduction in Tremadoc time, and 475 10 Ma from a light rare earth element (LREE)-enriched tonalite intrusion that incorporated Laurentian continental material by early Arenig time (Early Ordovician, Stage 2) during arc-continent collision. Notably, LREE enrichment in volcanism and silicic intrusions of the Tyrone Igneous Complex exceeds that of average Dalradian (Laurentian) continental material that would have been thrust under the colliding forearc and potentially recycled into arc magmatism. This implies that crystal fractionation, in addition to magmatic mixing and assimilation, was important to the formation of new crust in the Grampian-Taconic orogeny. Because similar super-enrichment of orogenic melts occurred elsewhere in the Caledonides in the British Isles and Newfoundland, the addition of new, highly enriched melt to this accreted arc terrane was apparently widespread spatially and temporally. Such super-enrichment of magmatism, especially if accompanied by loss of corresponding lower crustal residues, supports the theory that arc-continent collision plays an important role in altering bulk crustal composition toward typical values for ancient continental crust. ?? 2009 Geological Society of London.

  19. 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.

  20. Temporal Evolution of the Upper Continental Crust: Implications for the Mode of Crustal Growth and the Evolution of the Hydrosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rudnick, R. L.; Gaschnig, R. M.; Li, S.; Tang, M.; Qiu, L.; Valley, J. W.; Zurkowski, C.; McDonough, W. F.

    2014-12-01

    The upper continental crust (UCC), the interface between the atmosphere and solid Earth, is the site of weathering that produces sedimentary rocks, influences ocean chemistry through runoff of soluble elements, and affects climate through CO2 draw-down. The UCC also contains more than 50% of the crust's highly incompatible element budget (including K, Th, and U). Therefore, understanding its composition and evolution provides insight into how continents have formed, evolved, and interacted with the hydrosphere. New major and trace element compositions of >100 glacial diamictites and >100 Archean shales, plus δ7Li and δ18O for a subset of these samples, combined with data from the literature, show that the average composition of the UCC has changed through time, reflecting both the rise of atmospheric oxygen and its attendant effects on weathering, as well as the mode of crust formation and differentiation. Some changes that occur as a step function near the Archean/Proterozoic boundary (increased Th/U, decreased Mo/Pr, V/Lu) reflect the rise of oxygen at the great oxidation event (GOE) and its influence on chemical weathering signatures in the UCC. Other changes are more gradual with time (e.g., higher Th/Sc and δ18O, lower Ni/Co, La/Nb, Eu/Eu* and transition metal abundances) and reflect an UCC that has transitioned from a more mafic to a more felsic bulk composition, and which experienced increased interaction with the hydrosphere with time. The gradual nature of these compositional changes likely reflects the waning heat production of the Earth, rather than an abrupt change in tectonics or style of crust formation. These more gradual changes in crust composition, which contrast with the abrupt changes associated with the GOE, suggest that a fundamental change in the nature of crust differentiation is unlikely to be responsible for the rise of atmospheric oxygen (cf. Keller and Schoene, 2012). Indeed, it appears that the opposite may be true: that the rise of

  1. Basinal seamounts and seamount chains of the Central Indian Ocean: Probable near-axis origin from a fast-spreading ridge

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Mukhopadhyay, R.; Batiza, R.

    Hydrosweep mapping of crust in the Central Indian Ocean Basin reveals abundant volcanoes occurring both as isolated seamounts and linear seamount chains parallel to flow lines. Their shapes, sizes and overall style of occurrence...

  2. The Stratigraphy and Evolution of the Lunar Crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCallum, I. Stewart

    1998-01-01

    Reconstruction of stratigraphic relationships in the ancient lunar crust has proved to be a formidable task. The intense bombardment during the first 700 m.y. of lunar history has severely perturbed the original stratigraphy and destroyed the primary textures of all but a few nonmare rocks. However, a knowledge of the crustal stratigraphy as it existed prior to the cataclysmic bombardment about 3.9 Ga is essential to test the major models proposed for crustal origin, i.e., crystal fractionation in a global magmasphere or serial magmatism in a large number of smaller bodies. Despite the large difference in scale implicit in these two models, both require an efficient separation of plagioclase and mafic minerals to form the anorthositic crust and the mafic mantle. Despite the havoc wreaked by the large body impactors, these same impact processes have brought to the lunar surface crystalline samples derived from at least the upper half of the lunar crust, thereby providing an opportunity to reconstruct the stratigraphy in areas sampled by the Apollo missions. As noted, ejecta from the large multiring basins are dominantly, or even exclusively, of crustal origin. Given the most recent determinations of crustal thicknesses, this implies an upper limit to the depth of excavation of about 60 km. Of all the lunar samples studied, a small set has been recognized as "pristine", and within this pristine group, a small fraction have retained some vestiges of primary features formed during the earliest stages of crystallization or recrystallization prior to 4.0 Ga. We have examined a number of these samples that have retained some record of primary crystallization to deduce thermal histories from an analysis of structural, textural, and compositional features in minerals from these samples. Specifically, by quantitative modeling of (1) the growth rate and development of compositional profiles of exsolution lamellae in pyroxenes and (2) the rate of Fe-Mg ordering in

  3. Spreading continents kick-started plate tectonics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rey, Patrice F; Coltice, Nicolas; Flament, Nicolas

    2014-09-18

    Stresses acting on cold, thick and negatively buoyant oceanic lithosphere are thought to be crucial to the initiation of subduction and the operation of plate tectonics, which characterizes the present-day geodynamics of the Earth. Because the Earth's interior was hotter in the Archaean eon, the oceanic crust may have been thicker, thereby making the oceanic lithosphere more buoyant than at present, and whether subduction and plate tectonics occurred during this time is ambiguous, both in the geological record and in geodynamic models. Here we show that because the oceanic crust was thick and buoyant, early continents may have produced intra-lithospheric gravitational stresses large enough to drive their gravitational spreading, to initiate subduction at their margins and to trigger episodes of subduction. Our model predicts the co-occurrence of deep to progressively shallower mafic volcanics and arc magmatism within continents in a self-consistent geodynamic framework, explaining the enigmatic multimodal volcanism and tectonic record of Archaean cratons. Moreover, our model predicts a petrological stratification and tectonic structure of the sub-continental lithospheric mantle, two predictions that are consistent with xenolith and seismic studies, respectively, and consistent with the existence of a mid-lithospheric seismic discontinuity. The slow gravitational collapse of early continents could have kick-started transient episodes of plate tectonics until, as the Earth's interior cooled and oceanic lithosphere became heavier, plate tectonics became self-sustaining.

  4. The interpretation of geochemical logs from the oceanic basement: mineral modelling in Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Hole 735B

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Harvey, P.K.; Lovell, M.A.; Bristow, J.F.

    1991-01-01

    Leg 118 of the Ocean Drilling Program was carried out in the vicinity of the Southwest Indian Ridge. Of the boreholes drilled, by far the most important and scientifically spectacular is Hole 735B which was located on a shallow platform adjacent to the Atlantis II Transform. This hole penetrates some 500 m of gabbroic rocks representing Layer 3 of the oceanic crust. The recovered gabbros show considerable variation both in mineralogy and in the degree of deformation. Core recovery averages 87% and there is excellent control and correlation between the core and the wide range of logs obtained. Mineralogy logs are derived and presented using both core sample data and downhole geochemical logs for Hole 735B. The problems of transforming these data for the particular mineralogy encountered are discussed. (Author)

  5. Seismic Wave Propagation in Icy Ocean Worlds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stähler, Simon C.; Panning, Mark P.; Vance, Steven D.; Lorenz, Ralph D.; van Driel, Martin; Nissen-Meyer, Tarje; Kedar, Sharon

    2018-01-01

    Seismology was developed on Earth and shaped our model of the Earth's interior over the twentieth century. With the exception of the Philae lander, all in situ extraterrestrial seismological effort to date was limited to other terrestrial planets. All have in common a rigid crust above a solid mantle. The coming years may see the installation of seismometers on Europa, Titan, and Enceladus, so it is necessary to adapt seismological concepts to the setting of worlds with global oceans covered in ice. Here we use waveform analyses to identify and classify wave types, developing a lexicon for icy ocean world seismology intended to be useful to both seismologists and planetary scientists. We use results from spectral-element simulations of broadband seismic wavefields to adapt seismological concepts to icy ocean worlds. We present a concise naming scheme for seismic waves and an overview of the features of the seismic wavefield on Europa, Titan, Ganymede, and Enceladus. In close connection with geophysical interior models, we analyze simulated seismic measurements of Europa and Titan that might be used to constrain geochemical parameters governing the habitability of a sub-ice ocean.

  6. Crust formation in drying colloidal suspensions

    KAUST Repository

    Style, R. W.

    2010-06-30

    During the drying of colloidal suspensions, the desiccation process causes the suspension near the air interface to consolidate into a connected porous matrix or crust. Fluid transport in the porous medium is governed by Darcy\\'s law and the equations of poroelasticity, while the equations of colloid physics govern processes in the suspension. We derive new equations describing this process, including unique boundary conditions coupling the two regions, yielding a moving-boundary model of the concentration and stress profiles during drying. A solution is found for the steady-state growth of a nedimensional crust during constant evaporation rate from the surface. The solution is used to demonstrate the importance of the system boundary conditions on stress profiles and diffusivity in a drying crust. © 2011 The Royal Society.

  7. Palaeomagnetism and the continental crust

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Piper, J.D.A.

    1987-01-01

    This book is an introduction to palaeomagnetism offering treatment of theory and practice. It analyzes the palaeomagnetic record over the whole of geological time, from the Archaean to the Cenozoic, and goes on to examine the impact of past geometries and movements of the continental crust at each geological stage. Topics covered include theory of rock and mineral magnetism, field and laboratory methods, growth and consolidation of the continental crust in Archaean and Proterozoic times, Palaeozoic palaeomagnetism and the formation of Pangaea, the geomagnetic fields, continental movements, configurations and mantle convection.

  8. 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.

  9. Pseudofaults and associated seamounts in the conjugate Arabian and Eastern Somali basins, NW Indian Ocean - New constraints from high-resolution satellite-derived gravity data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sreejith, K. M.; Chaubey, A. K.; Mishra, Akhil; Kumar, Shravan; Rajawat, A. S.

    2016-12-01

    Marine gravity data derived from satellite altimeters are effective tools in mapping fine-scale tectonic features of the ocean basins such as pseudofaults, fracture zones and seamounts, particularly when the ocean basins are carpeted with thick sediments. We use high-resolution satellite-generated gravity and seismic reflection data to map boundaries of pseudofaults and transferred crust related to the Paleocene spreading ridge propagation in the Arabian and its conjugate Eastern Somali basins. The study has provided refinement in the position of previously reported pseudofaults and their spatial extensions in the conjugate basins. It is observed that the transferred crustal block bounded by inner pseudofault and failed spreading ridge is characterized by a gravity low and rugged basement. The refined satellite gravity image of the Arabian Basin also revealed three seamounts in close proximity to the pseudofaults, which were not reported earlier. In the Eastern Somali Basin, seamounts are aligned along NE-SW direction forming ∼300 km long seamount chain. Admittance analysis and Flexural model studies indicated that the seamount chain is isostatically compensated locally with Effective Elastic Thickness (Te) of 3-4 km. Based on the present results and published plate tectonic models, we interpret that the seamounts in the Arabian Basin are formed by spreading ridge propagation and are associated with pseudofaults, whereas the seamount chain in the Eastern Somali Basin might have probably originated due to melting and upwelling of upper mantle heterogeneities in advance of migrating/propagating paleo Carlsberg Ridge.

  10. Can Fractional Crystallization of a Lunar Magma Ocean Produce the Lunar Crust?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rapp, Jennifer F.; Draper, David S.

    2013-01-01

    New techniques enable the study of Apollo samples and lunar meteorites in unprecedented detail, and recent orbital spectral data reveal more about the lunar farside than ever before, raising new questions about the supposed simplicity of lunar geology. Nevertheless, crystallization of a global-scale magma ocean remains the best model to account for known lunar lithologies. Crystallization of a lunar magma ocean (LMO) is modeled to proceed by two end-member processes - fractional crystallization from (mostly) the bottom up, or initial equilibrium crystallization as the magma is vigorously convecting and crystals remain entrained, followed by crystal settling and a final period of fractional crystallization [1]. Physical models of magma viscosity and convection at this scale suggest that both processes are possible. We have been carrying out high-fidelity experimental simulations of LMO crystallization using two bulk compositions that can be regarded as end-members in the likely relevant range: Taylor Whole Moon (TWM) [2] and Lunar Primitive Upper Mantle (LPUM) [3]. TWM is enriched in refractory elements by 1.5 times relative to Earth, whereas LPUM is similar to the terrestrial primitive upper mantle, with adjustments made for the depletion of volatile alkalis observed on the Moon. Here we extend our earlier equilibrium-crystallization experiments [4] with runs simulating full fractional crystallization

  11. Investigation of thallium fluxes from subaerial volcanism-Implications for the present and past mass balance of thallium in the oceans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, R.G.A.; Rehkamper, M.; Hinkley, T.K.; Nielsen, S.G.; Toutain, J.P.

    2009-01-01

    A suite of 34 volcanic gas condensates and particulates from Kilauea (Hawaii), Mt. Etna and Vulcano (Italy), Mt. Merapi (Indonesia), White Island and Mt. Nguaruhoe (New Zealand) were analysed for both Tl isotope compositions and Tl/Pb ratios. When considered together with published Tl-Pb abundance data, the measurements provide globally representative best estimates of Tl/Pb = 0.46 ?? 0.25 and ??205Tl = -1.7 ?? 2.0 for the emissions of subaerial volcanism to the atmosphere and oceans (??205Tl is the deviation of the 205Tl/203Tl isotope ratio from NIST SRM 997 isotope standard in parts per 10,000). Compared to igneous rocks of the crust and mantle, volcanic gases were found to have (i) Tl/Pb ratios that are typically about an order of magnitude higher, and (ii) significantly more variable Tl isotope compositions but a mean ??205Tl value that is indistinguishable from estimates for the Earth's mantle and continental crust. The first observation can be explained by the more volatile nature of Tl compared to Pb during the production of volcanic gases, whilst the second reflects the contrasting and approximately balanced isotope fractionation effects that are generated by partial evaporation of Tl during magma degassing and partial Tl condensation as a result of the cooling and differentiation of volcanic gases. Mass balance calculations, based on results from this and other recent Tl isotope studies, were carried out to investigate whether temporal changes in the volcanic Tl fluxes could be responsible for the dramatic shift in the ??205Tl value of the oceans at ???55 Ma, which has been inferred from Tl isotope time series data for ferromanganese crusts. The calculations demonstrate that even large changes in the marine Tl input fluxes from volcanism and other sources are unable to significantly alter the Tl isotope composition of the oceans. Based on modelling, it is shown that the large inferred change in the ??205Tl value of seawater is best explained if the oceans

  12. Chronological evidence that the Moon is either young or did not have a global magma ocean.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borg, Lars E; Connelly, James N; Boyet, Maud; Carlson, Richard W

    2011-08-17

    Chemical evolution of planetary bodies, ranging from asteroids to the large rocky planets, is thought to begin with differentiation through solidification of magma oceans many hundreds of kilometres in depth. The Earth's Moon is the archetypical example of this type of differentiation. Evidence for a lunar magma ocean is derived largely from the widespread distribution, compositional and mineralogical characteristics, and ancient ages inferred for the ferroan anorthosite (FAN) suite of lunar crustal rocks. The FANs are considered to be primary lunar flotation-cumulate crust that crystallized in the latter stages of magma ocean solidification. According to this theory, FANs represent the oldest lunar crustal rock type. Attempts to date this rock suite have yielded ambiguous results, however, because individual isochron measurements are typically incompatible with the geochemical make-up of the samples, and have not been confirmed by additional isotopic systems. By making improvements to the standard isotopic techniques, we report here the age of crystallization of FAN 60025 using the (207)Pb-(206)Pb, (147)Sm-(143)Nd and (146)Sm-(142)Nd isotopic systems to be 4,360 ± 3 million years. This extraordinarily young age requires that either the Moon solidified significantly later than most previous estimates or the long-held assumption that FANs are flotation cumulates of a primordial magma ocean is incorrect. If the latter is correct, then much of the lunar crust may have been produced by non-magma-ocean processes, such as serial magmatism.

  13. Implications of Nb/U, Th/U and Sm/Nd in plume magmas for the relationship between continental and oceanic crust formation and the development of the depleted mantle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, Ian H.

    2002-05-01

    The Nb/U and Th/U of the primitive mantle are 34 and 4.04 respectively, which compare with 9.7 and 3.96 for the continental crust. Extraction of continental crust from the mantle therefore has a profound influence on its Nb/U but little influence on its Th/U. Conversely, extraction of midocean ridge-type basalts lowers the Th/U of the mantle residue but has little influence on its Nb/U. As a consequence, variations in Th/U and Nb/U with Sm/Nd can be used to evaluate the relative importance of continental and basaltic crust extraction in the formation of the depleted (Sm/Nd enriched) mantle reservoir. This study evaluates Nb/U, Th/U, and Sm/Nd variations in suites of komatiites, picrites, and their associated basalts, of various ages, to determine whether basalt and/or continental crust have been extracted from their source region. Emphasis is placed on komatiites and picrites because they formed at high degrees of partial melting and are expected to have Nb/U, Th/U, and Sm/Nd that are essentially the same as the mantle that melted to produce them. The results show that all of the studied suites, with the exception of the Barberton, have had both continental crust and basaltic crust extracted from their mantle source region. The high Sm/Nd of the Gorgona and Munro komatiites require the elevated ratios seen in these suites to be due primarily to extraction of basaltic crust from their source regions, whereas basaltic and continental crust extraction are of subequal importance in the source regions of the Yilgarn and Belingwe komatiites. The Sm/Nd of modern midocean ridge basalts lies above the crustal extraction curve on a plot of Sm/Nd against Nb/U, which requires the upper mantle to have had both basaltic and continental crust extracted from it. It is suggested that the extraction of the basaltic reservoir from the mantle occurs at midocean ridges and that the basaltic crust, together with its complementary depleted mantle residue, is subducted to the core

  14. Global Paleobathymetry Reconstruction with Realistic Shelf-Slope and Sediment Wedge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goswami, A.; Hinnov, L. A.; Gnanadesikan, A.; Olson, P.

    2013-12-01

    bathymetry, starting with age of the oceanic crust. We then reconstructed paleobathymetry for PETM (55 Ma) and Cenomanian-Turonian (90 Ma) times. For each case, the final products are: a) a global depth to basement measurement map based on plate model and EarthByte published age of the ocean crust for modern world; b) global oceanic crust bathymetry maps with a multilayer sediment layer (two versions with two types of sediment layers based on: i) observed total sediment thickness of the modern oceans and marginal seas, and ii) EarthByte-estimated global sediment data for 00 Ma); c) global oceanic bathymetry maps (two versions with two types of sediment layers) with reconstructed shelf and slope; and d) global elevation-bathymetry maps (two versions with two types of sediment layers) with continental elevations (PALEOMAP) and ocean bathymetry. Similar maps for other geological times can be produced using this method provided that ocean crustal age is known.

  15. Terrestrial aftermath of the Moon-forming impact.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sleep, Norman H; Zahnle, Kevin J; Lupu, Roxana E

    2014-09-13

    Much of the Earth's mantle was melted in the Moon-forming impact. Gases that were not partially soluble in the melt, such as water and CO2, formed a thick, deep atmosphere surrounding the post-impact Earth. This atmosphere was opaque to thermal radiation, allowing heat to escape to space only at the runaway greenhouse threshold of approximately 100 W m(-2). The duration of this runaway greenhouse stage was limited to approximately 10 Myr by the internal energy and tidal heating, ending with a partially crystalline uppermost mantle and a solid deep mantle. At this point, the crust was able to cool efficiently and solidified at the surface. After the condensation of the water ocean, approximately 100 bar of CO2 remained in the atmosphere, creating a solar-heated greenhouse, while the surface cooled to approximately 500 K. Almost all this CO2 had to be sequestered by subduction into the mantle by 3.8 Ga, when the geological record indicates the presence of life and hence a habitable environment. The deep CO2 sequestration into the mantle could be explained by a rapid subduction of the old oceanic crust, such that the top of the crust would remain cold and retain its CO2. Kinematically, these episodes would be required to have both fast subduction (and hence seafloor spreading) and old crust. Hadean oceanic crust that formed from hot mantle would have been thicker than modern crust, and therefore only old crust underlain by cool mantle lithosphere could subduct. Once subduction started, the basaltic crust would turn into dense eclogite, increasing the rate of subduction. The rapid subduction would stop when the young partially frozen crust from the rapidly spreading ridge entered the subduction zone. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  16. 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.

  17. Evaluating Complex Magma Mixing via Polytopic Vector Analysis (PVA in the Papagayo Tuff, Northern Costa Rica: Processes that Form Continental Crust

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guillermo E. Alvarado

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Over the last forty years, research has revealed the importance of magma mixing as a trigger for volcanic eruptions, as well as its role in creating the diversity of magma compositions in arcs. Sensitive isotopic and microchemical techniques can reveal subtle evidence of magma mixing in igneous rocks, but more robust statistical techniques for bulk chemical data can help evaluate complex mixing relationships. Polytopic vector analysis (PVA is a multivariate technique that can be used to evaluate suites of samples that are produced by mixing of two or more magma batches. The Papagayo Tuff of the Miocene-Pleistocene Bagaces Formation in northern Costa Rica is associated with a segment of the Central American Volcanic Arc. While this segment of the arc is located on oceanic plateau, recent (<8 Ma ignimbrites bear the chemical signatures of upper continental crust, marking the transition from oceanic to continental crust. The Papagayo Tuff contains banded pumice fragments consistent with one or more episodes of mixing/mingling to produce a single volcanic deposit. The PVA solution for the sample set is consistent with observations from bulk chemistry, microchemistry and petrographic data from the rocks. However, without PVA, the unequivocal identification of the three end-member solution would not have been possible.

  18. Growth of continental crust: Clues from Nd isotopes and Nb-Th relationships in mantle-derived magmas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arndt, N.T.; Chauvel, C.; Jochum, K.P.; Gruau, G.; Hofmann, A.W.

    1988-01-01

    Isotope and trace element geochemistry of Precambrian mantle derived rocks and implications for the formation of the continental crust is discussed. Epsilon Nd values of Archean komatiites are variable, but range up to at least +5, suggesting that the Archean mantle was heterogeneous and, in part, very depleted as far back as 3.4 to 3.5 Ga. This may be taken as evidence for separation of continental crust very early in Earth history. If these komatiite sources were allowed to evolve in a closed system, they would produce modern day reservoirs with much higher epsilon Nd values than is observed. This implies recycling of some sort of enriched material, perhaps subducted sediments, although other possibilities exist. Archean volcanics show lower Nb/Th than modern volcanics, suggesting a more primitive mantle source than that observed nowadays. However, Cretaceous komatiites from Gorgona island have similar Nb/Th to Archean volcanics, indicating either the Archean mantle source was indeed more primitive, or Archean magmas were derived from a deep ocean island source like that proposed for Gorgona

  19. Growth of continental crust: Clues from Nd isotopes and Nb-Th relationships in mantle-derived magmas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arndt, N. T.; Chauvel, C.; Jochum, K.-P.; Gruau, G.; Hofmann, A. W.

    1988-01-01

    Isotope and trace element geochemistry of Precambrian mantle derived rocks and implications for the formation of the continental crust is discussed. Epsilon Nd values of Archean komatiites are variable, but range up to at least +5, suggesting that the Archean mantle was heterogeneous and, in part, very depleted as far back as 3.4 to 3.5 Ga. This may be taken as evidence for separation of continental crust very early in Earth history. If these komatiite sources were allowed to evolve in a closed system, they would produce modern day reservoirs with much higher epsilon Nd values than is observed. This implies recycling of some sort of enriched material, perhaps subducted sediments, although other possibilities exist. Archean volcanics show lower Nb/Th than modern volcanics, suggesting a more primitive mantle source than that observed nowadays. However, Cretaceous komatiites from Gorgona island have similar Nb/Th to Archean volcanics, indicating either the Archean mantle source was indeed more primitive, or Archean magmas were derived from a deep ocean island source like that proposed for Gorgona.

  20. Growth of continental crust: Clues from Nd isotopes and Nb-Th relationships in mantle-derived magmas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arndt, N. T.; Chauvel, C.; Jochum, K.-P.; Gruau, G.; Hofmann, A. W.

    Isotope and trace element geochemistry of Precambrian mantle derived rocks and implications for the formation of the continental crust is discussed. Epsilon Nd values of Archean komatiites are variable, but range up to at least +5, suggesting that the Archean mantle was heterogeneous and, in part, very depleted as far back as 3.4 to 3.5 Ga. This may be taken as evidence for separation of continental crust very early in Earth history. If these komatiite sources were allowed to evolve in a closed system, they would produce modern day reservoirs with much higher epsilon Nd values than is observed. This implies recycling of some sort of enriched material, perhaps subducted sediments, although other possibilities exist. Archean volcanics show lower Nb/Th than modern volcanics, suggesting a more primitive mantle source than that observed nowadays. However, Cretaceous komatiites from Gorgona island have similar Nb/Th to Archean volcanics, indicating either the Archean mantle source was indeed more primitive, or Archean magmas were derived from a deep ocean island source like that proposed for Gorgona.

  1. Continental crustal formation and recycling: Evidence from oceanic basalts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saunders, A. D.; Tarney, J.; Norry, M. J.

    1988-01-01

    Despite the wealth of geochemical data for subduction-related magma types, and the clear importance of such magmas in the creation of continental crust, there is still no concensus about the relative magnitudes of crustal creation versus crustal destruction (i.e., recycling of crust into the mantle). The role of subducted sediment in the formation of the arc magmas is now well documented; but what proportion of sediment is taken into the deeper mantle? Integrated isotopic and trace element studies of magmas erupted far from presently active subduction zones, in particular basaltic rocks erupted in the ocean basins, are providing important information about the role of crustal recycling. By identifying potential chemical tracers, it is impossible to monitor the effects of crustal recycling, and produce models predicting the mass of material recycled into the mantle throughout long periods of geological time.

  2. Modes and implications of mantle and lower-crust denudation at slow-spreading mid-ocean ridges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schroeder, Timothy John

    Slow-spreading mid-ocean ridges (Cann, 1993, Cannat, 1993). Extension at mid-ocean ridges is most commonly manifested by slip on high angle (˜60°) normal faults that dip into, and define the rift valley walls (Smith and Cann, 1993). Less commonly, extension occurs by long periods of slip along low-angle normal faults that penetrate to structurally deep levels of oceanic lithosphere and denude gabbro and/or pendotite to the seafloor in domal massifs termed "oceanic core complexes" (Dick et al., 1981; Dick et al., 1991; Tucholke et al., 1998; Mutter and Karson, 1992; Cann et al., 1997; MacLeod et al., 2002). This dissertation addresses processes and implications of tectonic extension at two oceanic core complexes. Atlantis Massif (30°N, Mid-Atlantic Ridge) is formed dominantly of serpentinized peridotite with lesser gabbro, and Atlantis Bank (57°E, Southwest Indian Ridge) is dominated by gabbro. Localization of brittle strain at Atlantis Massif occurred by reaction-softening processes associated with metasomatic alteration of peridotite and serpentmite to amphibole-, chlorite- and talc-bearing assemblages. Ductile strain at Atlantis Massif and Atlantis Bank is localized into intervals of highly-fractionated, oxide-rich gabbro. Two-oxide geothermometry of gabbro indicates that it was not penetratively deformed below ˜500°C. Denuded peridotite at Atlantis Massif is host to hydrothermal circulation driven in part by exothermic serpentinization reactions. Serpentinization decreases the seismic velocity of peridotite and leads to acquisition of a magnetic signature. Venting of highly-alkaline, methane- and hydrogen-rich serpentinization-derived fluids leads to lithification of seafloor carbonate ooze by precipitation of carbonate cement in a zone of mixing with "normal" seawater. This process may be the primary depositional mechanism of ophicalcite deposits and likely occurs wherever peridotite is exposed near the Earth's surface and is fractured to permit water

  3. Mechanical analysis of the thin- versus thick-skin tectonics in the Molasse basin and Jura thrust belt (Swiss Alps)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maillot, Bertrand; Caer, Typhaine; Souloumiac, Pauline; Nussbaum, Christophe

    2014-05-01

    The Jura fold-and-thrust belt is classically interpreted as a thin-skin belt developed over a triasic décollement, which is itself topping Permo-carboniferous E-W transpressive grabens delimited by N-S strike-slip faults. These faults have been reactivated in eo-oligocene times as normal faults. Today, the basement is seismically active, suggesting that the Jura belt involves some amount of basement deformation. We tested both thin and thick-skin hypotheses using a simple rheological prototype with two potential décollements : a Triassic horizon extending below Jura and Molasse basin, and the upper-lower crust interface rooted deep south of the Alpine front close to the Penninic nappes region. Using the theory of limit analysis combined with automatic adaptive meshing, we demonstrate that the main Jura Triassic décollement can be activated with the present day topography, if its friction angle is below 5°, a counter-intuitive result, that was not foreseen by sand box models. In contrast, a thick-skin deformation involving all the upper crust is possible either only south of the Jura below the topographic depression of the Molasse basin if the upper-lower crust interface has an equivalent friction angle above 4.6°, or far beyond it towards the North, if it is weaker. Active thick-skin thrusting within the Jura belt requires further assumptions on the existence of weak zones, for which a good candidate could be the inherited eo-oligocene normal faults as previously suggested in the litterature. We also demonstrated the potential major role of the topographic depression of the Molasse basin in conveying deformation from the Alps to the Jura, and in localising thick-skin thrusting.

  4. View of an intact oceanic arc, from surficial to mesozonal levels: Cretaceous Alisitos arc, Baja California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Busby, Cathy; Fackler Adams, Benjamin; Mattinson, James; Deoreo, Stephen

    2006-01-01

    suspensions that mixed completely with water. In contrast, gentler slopes on the opposite flank allowed pyroclastic flows to enter the sea with integrity, and supported extensive buildups of bioherms. Caldera collapse on the major subaerial edifice ponded the tuff of Aguajito to a thickness of at least 3 km. The outflow ignimbrite forms a marker in nonmarine to shallow marine sections, and in deepwater sections it occurs as blocks up to 150 m long in a debris-avalanche deposit. These welded ignimbrite blocks were deposited hot enough to deform plastically and form peperite with the debris-avalanche matrix. The debris avalanche was likely triggered by injection of feeder dikes along the basin-bounding fault zone during the caldera-forming eruption. Intra-arc extension controlled very high subsidence rates, followed shortly thereafter by accretion through back-arc basin closure by 105 Ma. Accretion of the oceanic arc may have been accomplished by detachment of the upper crust along a still hot, thick middle crustal tonalitic layer, during subduction of mafic-ultramafic substrate.

  5. 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

  6. Serpentinization and carbonation of pristine continental ultramafic rocks and applications to the oceanic crust; H2O-CO2 alteration of dunites and re-distribution of Ni-Cu-PGE in sulphide deposits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grant, Thomas; McEnroe, Suzanne; Eske Sørensen, Bjørn; Larsen, Rune; Pastore, Zeudia; Rune Grannes, Kim; Nikolaisen, Even

    2017-04-01

    Here, we document carbonation and serpentinization within a suite of ultramafic rocks from a continental setting. These ultramafic rocks vary from pristine dunites to varying degrees of serpentinization which locally penetrates the ultramafic complex. Hence, it allows us to observe a number of delicate serpentinization and carbonation reactions, otherwise lost during more extensive alteration or tectonic events. We use a multi-disciplinary approach using petrographic, EPMA, thermodynamic modelling and geophysical data to reveal how the initial stages of serpentization and carbonation in dunites affects the distribution of economic to sub-economic deposits of Ni-Cu and PGE. The data can then be applied to oceanic crust. The samples are dunites and poikilitic wehrlites from the Reinfjord Ultramafic complex, Seiland Igneous Province Northern Norway. The complex formed through crystallization of picritic melts in the lower continental crust. The dunites contain small amounts of interstitial clinopyroxene, sulphides and spinel, with local enrichments in Ni, Cu and PGE. Late magmatic CO2-H2O-S fluids reacted with the dunite forming clots of amphibole + dolomite + sulphides + enstatite, reaction rims of enstatite + dolomite, and inclusions trails of dolomite + enstatite + magnetite + CO2 fluid. Thermodynamic modelling reveals that these textures formed at pressures of >12 kbar and temperatures 850-950 °C, which would be consistent with the late magmatic history of the Reinfjord complex. The clots and reactions have local association with enrichments in gold-rich PGMs. A second stage of alteration involved H2O-dominated fluids. These formed predominantly lizardite serpentinization, as is often concentrated within highly localized fracture zones. Thermodynamic modelling shows that these formed serpentinization interacted with the earlier formed carbonate bearing assemblages leading to the formation of serpentinite, native copper and symplectites of brucite + calcite. The

  7. Structural Response of the Earth's Crust to an Extra-Terrestrial Source of Stress by Identifying its Characteristic Pattern

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dasgupta, B.

    2016-12-01

    The earth's crust is a geodynamic realm, which is constantly evolving. Due to its dynamic nature, the crust is constantly being subjected to remodelling. The earth's crustal response to stress is a result of isostatic compensation. The crust is also a living proof of yesteryears' dynamics. Extra-terrestrial agents of deformation refers to meteorites, asteroids etc. These are catastrophic events that influence a larger area (considering larger impact bodies). They effect the crust from outside, hence leave behind very specific structural signatures.Consider an extra-terrestrial object impacting the earth's crust. The problem can be broken down into 3 parts: Pre Impact (kinematics of the object and nature of surface of impact); Syn Impact (dissipation of energy and formation of crater); and Post Impact (structural response, geophysical anomalies and effect on biota)Upon impact, the projectile penetrates the earth's crust to a depth of twice its diameter. Shock waves generated due impact propagate in all possible directions. The reflected waves cause complete melting and vaporization of the impact body. At the same time, increased internal energy of the system melts the target rock. Depending on the thickness and density of crustal matter, its' interaction with the mantle is determined. Data collection from such impact sites is the first step towards its theoretical modeling. Integrating geophysical (seismic, magnetic), paleomagnetic, geochemical and geo-chronological data one can determine the kinematic parameters that governed the event. A working model that illustrates the crustal responses to extraterrestrial stress of extreme magnitude cannot be qualitative. Hence the most fundamental thing at this point is quantification of these parameters. The variables form a `mass-energy equation', a simple theorem in Classical Physics. This project is directed to give the equation its shape. The equation will be the foundation on which the simulation model will rest. Mass

  8. Layered crust-mantle transition zone below a large crustal intrusion in the Norwegian-Danish basin

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sandrin, Alessandro; Nielsen, Lars; Thybo, Hans

    2009-01-01

    the lowermost crust (7.7 km/s) and the uppermost mantle (7.9-8.0 km/s). The seismic data show a "ringing" Moho below the western part of the intrusion. The coda trailing the main PmP reflection is about 1.0 s long and is composed of 4-5 wavelets. We demonstrate that this feature may be explained by a layered......The crust and uppermost mantle below the large positive gravity anomaly in the central part of the Norwegian-Danish Basin, the Silkeborg Gravity High (SGH), is investigated using controlled source seismic data. A more than 80 km long and ~ 20 km thick intrusion is interpreted. The seismic velocity...... transition zone between 30 and 35 km depth, where high-velocity layers of mantle affinity (7.9-8.05 km/s) alternate with layers of typical lower crustal velocity (6.7-7.3 km/s). The characteristics of this layering, which causes thePmP coda, are modelled by matching synthetic seismograms to the observed data...

  9. Crust-Lithosphere-Asthenosphere Dynamics in Mantle Plume Provinces with Emphasis on the Galapagos =

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orellana, Felipe

    Hotspot tracks, which most geoscientists attribute to the effects of mantle plumes on the overlying lithospheric plates, are characterized by distinct bathymetry, gravity signatures, structural geology, volcanology, petrology, and geochemistry; motivating us to try to understand the dynamics behind the space-time-histories of these systems. Making use of classical geodynamic paradigms, such as highly-viscous fluids (Stokes flow, for the mantle and/or lithosphere), elastic plate behavior, and heat flow, we develop conceptual frameworks to explain a number of distinct hotspot track features, and present quantitative models aimed at elucidating their origins. There is much diversity among the population of mantle plume hotspot tracks on the Earth's oceanic crust. For example, there are marked differences in the style of their bathymetry, as well as in their gravimetric signals, and also in the isotopic signature of extruded lavas. At the same time, important underlying differences are given by the age of the lithospheric plates under which the mantle plumes are impinging, lithospheric elastic thickness, the heat (or buoyancy) flux of individual mantle plumes, their melt production, crustal thickening, the proximity of spreading centers, etc. In the first chapter of this dissertation, making use of scaling theory, we show that for most oceanic hotspot tracks, the character of bathymetric expression (primarily rough vs. smooth topography) can be explained by three independent primary underlying factors - plate thickness, or equivalently plate age; plate speed; and plume buoyancy flux - combined into a single parameter, R, the ratio of plume heat flux to the effective thermal capacity of the moving plate overlying the plume. The Galapagos archipelago (off the west coast of equatorial South America), part of a >20 Ma old hotspot track formed by the underlying Galapagos mantle plume, currently exhibits a broad geographic distribution of volcanic centers of surprisingly

  10. Preliminary study of crust-upper mantle structure of the Tibetan Plateau by using broadband teleseismic body waveforms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Lu-Pei; Zeng, Rong-Sheng; Wu, Francis T.; Owens, Thomas J.; Randall, George E.

    1993-05-01

    As part of a joint Sino-U.S. research project to study the deep structure of the Tibetan Plateau, 11 broadband digital seismic recorders were deployed on the Plateau for one year of passive seismic recording. In this report we use teleseimic P waveforms to study the seismic velocity structure of crust and upper mantle under three stations by receiver function inversion. The receiver function is obtained by first rotating two horizontal components of seismic records into radial and tangential components and then deconvolving the vertical component from them. The receiver function depends only on the structure near the station because the source and path effects have been removed by the deconvolution. To suppress noise, receiver functions calculated from events clustered in a small range of back-azimuths and epicentral distances are stacked. Using a matrix formalism describing the propagation of elastic waves in laterally homogeneous stratified medium, a synthetic receiver function and differential receiver functions for the parameters in each layer can be calculated to establish a linearized inversion for one-dimensional velocity structure. Preliminary results of three stations, Wen-quan, Golmud and Xigatze (Coded as WNDO, TUNL and XIGA), located in central, northern and southern Plateau are given in this paper. The receiver functions of all three stations show clear P-S converted phases. The time delays of these converted phases relative to direct P arrivals are: WNDO 7.9s (for NE direction) and 8.3s (for SE direction), TUNL 8.2s, XIGA 9.0s. Such long time delays indicate the great thickness of crust under the Plateau. The differences between receiver function of these three station shows the tectonic difference between southern and north-central Plateau. The waveforms of the receiver functions for WNDO and TUNL are very simple, while the receiver function of XIGA has an additional midcrustal converted phase. The S wave velocity structures at these three stations

  11. Plutonic rocks in the Mineoka-Setogawa ophiolitic mélange, central Japan: Fragments of middle to lower crust of the Izu-Bonin-Mariana Arc?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ichiyama, Yuji; Ito, Hisatoshi; Hokanishi, Natsumi; Tamura, Akihiro; Arai, Shoji

    2017-06-01

    A Paleogene accretionary complex, the Mineoka-Setogawa Belt, is distributed around the Izu Collision Zone, central Japan. Plutonic rocks of gabbro, diorite and tonalite compositions are included as fragments and dykes in an ophiolitic mélange in this belt. Zircon U-Pb dating of the plutonic rocks indicates that they were formed at ca. 35 Ma simultaneously. These ages are consistent with Eocene-Oligocene tholeiite and calc-alkaline arc magmatism in the Izu-Bonin-Mariana (IBM) Arc and exclude several previous models for the origin of the Mineoka-Setogawa ophiolitic rocks. The geochemical characteristics of these plutonic rocks are similar to those of the Eocene-Oligocene IBM tholeiite and calc-alkaline volcanic rocks as well as to the accreted middle crust of the IBM Arc, the Tanzawa Plutonic Complex. Moreover, their lithology is consistent with those of the middle and lower crust of the IBM Arc estimated from the seismic velocity structure. These lines of evidence strongly indicate that the plutonic rocks in the Mineoka-Setogawa ophiolitic mélange are fragments of the middle to lower crust of the IBM Arc. Additionally, the presence of the Mineoka-Setogawa intermediate to felsic plutonic rocks supports the hypothesis that intermediate magma can form continental crust in intra-oceanic arcs.

  12. Sunda-Banda Arc Transition: Marine Wide-Angle Seismic Modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shulgin, A.; Planert, L.; Kopp, H.; Mueller, C.; Lueschen, E.; Engels, M.; Flueh, E.; Djajadihardja, Y.; Sindbad Working Group, T

    2008-12-01

    The Sunda-Banda Arc transition is the region of active convergence and collision of the Indo-Australian and Eurasian Plates. The style of subduction changes from an oceanic-island arc subduction to a continental- island arc collision. The character of the incoming plate varies from the rough topography of the Roo Rise, to the smooth seafloor of the Abyssal Plain off Bali, Sumbawa. Forearc structures include well-developed forearc basins and an accretionary prism/outer forearc high of variable size and shape. To quantify the variability of structure of the lower plate and the effects on the upper plate a refraction seismic survey was carried during cruise SO190-2. A total of 245 ocean bottom seismometers were deployed along 1020 nm of wide-angle seismic profiles in four major north-south oriented corridors. To assess the velocity structure we used a tomographic method which jointly inverts for refracted and reflected phases. The sedimentary layers of the models, obtained by the analysis of high-resolution MCS data (see Lueschen et al), were incorporated into the starting model. The obtained models exhibit strong changes of the incoming oceanic crust for the different portions of the margin: The westernmost profile off eastern Java shows a crustal thickness of more than 15 km, most likely related to the presence of an oceanic plateau. Profiles off Lombok reveal an oceanic crust of 8-9 km average thickness in the Argo Abyssal Plain. Crustal and upper mantle velocities are slightly decreased within an area of about 50-60 km seaward of the trench, indicating fracturing and related serpentinization due to bending of the oceanic crust and associated normal faulting. The outer forearc high is characterized by velocities of 2.5-5.5 km/s. For the Lombok Basin, the profiles show a sedimentary infill of up to 3.5 km thick and typical sediment velocities of 1.75-3.0 km/s. A reflector at 16 km depth and velocity values of 7.4-7.8 km/s beneath it suggest the presence of a shallow

  13. Continental crust formation: Numerical modelling of chemical evolution and geological implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walzer, U.; Hendel, R.

    2017-05-01

    Oceanic plateaus develop by decompression melting of mantle plumes and have contributed to the growth of the continental crust throughout Earth's evolution. Occasional large-scale partial melting events of parts of the asthenosphere during the Archean produced large domains of precursor crustal material. The fractionation of arc-related crust during the Proterozoic and Phanerozoic contributed to the growth of continental crust. However, it remains unclear whether the continents or their precursors formed during episodic events or whether the gaps in zircon age records are a function of varying preservation potential. This study demonstrates that the formation of the continental crust was intrinsically tied to the thermoconvective evolution of the Earth's mantle. Our numerical solutions for the full set of physical balance equations of convection in a spherical shell mantle, combined with simplified equations of chemical continent-mantle differentiation, demonstrate that the actual rate of continental growth is not uniform through time. The kinetic energy of solid-state mantle creep (Ekin) slowly decreases with superposed episodic but not periodic maxima. In addition, laterally averaged surface heat flow (qob) behaves similarly but shows peaks that lag by 15-30 Ma compared with the Ekin peaks. Peak values of continental growth are delayed by 75-100 Ma relative to the qob maxima. The calculated present-day qob and total continental mass values agree well with observed values. Each episode of continental growth is separated from the next by an interval of quiescence that is not the result of variations in mantle creep velocity but instead reflects the fact that the peridotite solidus is not only a function of pressure but also of local water abundance. A period of differentiation results in a reduction in regional water concentrations, thereby increasing the temperature of the peridotite solidus and the regional viscosity of the mantle. By plausibly varying the

  14. Isotopic data bearing on the origin of Mesozoic and Tertiary granitic rocks in the western United States

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    DePaolo, D.J.; Farmer, G.L.

    1984-01-01

    A regional survey of initial Nd and Sr isotopic compositions has been done on Mesozoic and Tertiary granitic rocks from a 500 000 km 2 area in California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona, and Colorado. The plutons, which range in composition from quartz diorite to monzogranite, are intruded into accreted oceanic geosynclinal terrains in the west and north and into Precambrian basement in the east. Broad geographic coverage allows the data to be interpreted in the context of the regional pre-Mesozoic crustal structure. Initial Nd isotopic compositions exhibit a huge range, encompassing values typical of oceanic magmatic arcs and Archean basement. The sources of the magmas can be inferred from the systematic geographic variability of Nd isotopic compositions. The plutons in the accreted terrains represent mantle-derived magma that assimilated crust while differentiating at deep levels. Those emplaced into Precambrian basement are mainly derived from the crust. The regional patterns can be understood in terms of: (1) the flux of mantle magma entering the crust; (2) crustal thickness; and (3) crustal age. The mantle magma flux apparently decreased inland; in the main batholith belts purely crustal granitic rocks are not observed because the flux was too large. Inland, crustal granite is common because mantle magma was scarce and the crust was thick, and hot enough to melt. The epsilonsub(Nd) values of peraluminous granite formed by melting of the Precambrian basement depend on the age of the local basement source. (author)

  15. GLERL Great Lakes Ice Thickness Data Base, 1966-1979

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — During the winters of 1965/66 through 1976/77, NOAA/Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory (GLERL) collected weekly ice thickness and stratigraphy data at up...

  16. 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.

  17. Persistence of deeply sourced iron in the Pacific Ocean.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horner, Tristan J; Williams, Helen M; Hein, James R; Saito, Mak A; Burton, Kevin W; Halliday, Alex N; Nielsen, Sune G

    2015-02-03

    Biological carbon fixation is limited by the supply of Fe in vast regions of the global ocean. Dissolved Fe in seawater is primarily sourced from continental mineral dust, submarine hydrothermalism, and sediment dissolution along continental margins. However, the relative contributions of these three sources to the Fe budget of the open ocean remains contentious. By exploiting the Fe stable isotopic fingerprints of these sources, it is possible to trace distinct Fe pools through marine environments, and through time using sedimentary records. We present a reconstruction of deep-sea Fe isotopic compositions from a Pacific Fe-Mn crust spanning the past 76 My. We find that there have been large and systematic changes in the Fe isotopic composition of seawater over the Cenozoic that reflect the influence of several, distinct Fe sources to the central Pacific Ocean. Given that deeply sourced Fe from hydrothermalism and marginal sediment dissolution exhibit the largest Fe isotopic variations in modern oceanic settings, the record requires that these deep Fe sources have exerted a major control over the Fe inventory of the Pacific for the past 76 My. The persistence of deeply sourced Fe in the Pacific Ocean illustrates that multiple sources contribute to the total Fe budget of the ocean and highlights the importance of oceanic circulation in determining if deeply sourced Fe is ever ventilated at the surface.

  18. [Effects of soil crusts on surface hydrology in the semiarid Loess hilly area].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Wei; Wen, Zhi; Chen, Li-Ding; Chen, Jin; Wu, Dong-Ping

    2012-11-01

    Soil crusts are distributed extensively in the Chinese Loess Plateau and play key roles in surface hydrological processes. In this study, a typical loess hilly region in Anjiagou catchment, Dingxi city, Gansu province was selected as the study region, and soil crusts in the catchment were investigated. Then, the hydrological effect of soil crusts was studied by using multi-sampling and hydrological monitoring experiments. Several key results were shown as follows. Firstly, compared with bared soil without crust cover, soil crusts can greatly reduce the bulk density, improve the porosity of soil, and raise the holding capacity of soil moisture which ranges from 1.4 to 1.9 times of that of bared soil. Secondly, the role of soil crust on rainfall interception was very significant. Moss crust was found to be strongest on rainfall interception, followed by synantectic crusts and lichen crusts. Bared soil without covering crusts was poorest in resisting rainfall splash. Thirdly, hydrological simulation experiments indicate that soil crusts play a certain positive role in promoting the water infiltration capacity, and the mean infiltration rate of the crusted soil was 2 times higher than that of the no-crust covered soils. While the accumulated infiltrated water amounts was also far higher than that of the bared soil.

  19. Did the Chicxulub meteorite impact trigger eruptions at mid-ocean ridges globally?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Byrnes, J. S.; Karlstrom, L.

    2017-12-01

    Are there causal links between the eruption of large igneous provinces, meteorite impacts, and mass extinctions? Recent dating suggests that state shifts in Deccan Traps eruptions, including erupted volumes, feeder dike orientations, and magma chemistry, occurred shortly after the Chicxulub impact. A proposed explanation for this observation is an increase in upper mantle permeability following the Chicxulub impact that accelerated the pace of Deccan volcanism [Richards et al., 2015]. If such triggering occurred, at global distances not associated with the impact antipode, it is reasonable to hypothesize that other reservoirs of stored melt may have been perturbed as well. We present evidence that mid-ocean ridge activity increased globally following the impact. Anomalously concentrated free-air gravity and sea-floor topographic roughness suggest volumes of excess oceanic ridge magmatism in the range of 2 x 105 to 106 km3 within 1 Myrs of the Chicxulub impact. This signal is only clearly observed for half-spreading rates above 35 mm/yr, possibly because crust formed at slower spreading rates is too complex to preserve the signal. Because similar anomalies are observed separately in the Indian and Pacific Oceans, and because the timing of the signal does not clearly align with changes in spreading rates, we do not favor plume activity as an explanation. Widespread mobilization of existing mantle melt by post-impact seismic radiation, and subsequent emplacement of melt as crustal intrusions and eruptions, can explain the volume and distribution of anomalous crust without invoking impact-induced melt production. Although the mechanism for increasing permeability is not clear at either Deccan or mid-ocean ridges, these results support the hypothesis that the causes and consequences of the Deccan Traps, Chicxulub impact, and K-Pg mass extinction should not be considered in isolation. We conclude by discussing several enigmatic observations from K-Pg time that heightened

  20. Growth of the continental crust: constraints from radiogenic isotope geochemistry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Taylor, P.N.

    1988-01-01

    Most models for evolution of continental crust are expressed in the form of a diagram illustrating the cumulative crustal mass (normalized relative to the present crustal mass) as a function of time. Thus, geochronological data inevitably play a major role in either constructing or testing crustal growth models. For all models, determining the start-time for effective crustal accretion is of vital importance. To this end, the continuing search for, and reliable characterization of, the most ancient crustal rock-units remains a worthy enterprise. Another important role for geochronology and radiogenic isotope geochemistry is to assess the status of major geological events as period either of new crust generation or of reworking of earlier formed continental crust. For age characterization of major geological provinces, using the critieria outined, the mass (or volume) of crust surviving to the present day should be determinable as a function of crust formation age. More recent developments, however, appear to set severe limitations on recycling of crust, at least by the process of sediment subduction. In modeling crustal growth without recycling, valuable constaints on growth rate variations through time can be provided if variations in the average age of the continental crust can be monitored through geological history. The question of the average age of the exposed continental crust was addressed by determining Sm-Nd crustal residence model ages (T-CR) for fine-grained sediment loads of many of the world's major rivers

  1. Assessing the distribution and abundance of seabed minerals from seafloor photographic data in the Central Indian Ocean Basin

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Sharma, R.; Khadge, N.H.; JaiSankar, S.

    Distribution characteristics of deep-sea mineral resources such as polymetallic nodules and ferromanganese crusts are often influenced by local seafloor features such as the topographic undulations and sediment thickness. Qualitative as well as semi...

  2. 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.

  3. Lava flooding of ancient planetary crusts: geometry, thickness, and volumes of flooded lunar impact basins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Head, J.W.

    1982-01-01

    Estimates of lava volumes on planetary surfaces provide important data on the lava flooding history and thermal evolution of a planet. Lack of information concerning the configuration of the topography prior to volcanic flooding requires the use of a variety of techniques to estimate lava thicknesses and volumes. A technique is described and developed which provides volume estimates by artificially flooding unflooded lunar topography characteristic of certain geological environments, and tracking the area covered, lava thicknesses, and lava volumes. Comparisons of map patterns of incompletely buried topography in these artificially flooded areas are then made to lava-flooded topography on the Moon in order to estimate the actual lava volumes. This technique is applied to two areas related to lunar impact basins; the relatively unflooded Orientale basin, and the Archimedes-Apennine Bench region of the Imbrium basin. (Auth.)

  4. Towards understanding how surface life can affect interior geological processes: a non-equilibrium thermodynamics approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. G. Dyke

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Life has significantly altered the Earth's atmosphere, oceans and crust. To what extent has it also affected interior geological processes? To address this question, three models of geological processes are formulated: mantle convection, continental crust uplift and erosion and oceanic crust recycling. These processes are characterised as non-equilibrium thermodynamic systems. Their states of disequilibrium are maintained by the power generated from the dissipation of energy from the interior of the Earth. Altering the thickness of continental crust via weathering and erosion affects the upper mantle temperature which leads to changes in rates of oceanic crust recycling and consequently rates of outgassing of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Estimates for the power generated by various elements in the Earth system are shown. This includes, inter alia, surface life generation of 264 TW of power, much greater than those of geological processes such as mantle convection at 12 TW. This high power results from life's ability to harvest energy directly from the sun. Life need only utilise a small fraction of the generated free chemical energy for geochemical transformations at the surface, such as affecting rates of weathering and erosion of continental rocks, in order to affect interior, geological processes. Consequently when assessing the effects of life on Earth, and potentially any planet with a significant biosphere, dynamical models may be required that better capture the coupled nature of biologically-mediated surface and interior processes.

  5. Magma-poor vs. magma-rich continental rifting and breakup in the Labrador Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gouiza, M.; Paton, D.

    2017-12-01

    Magma-poor and magma-rich rifted margins show distinct structural and stratigraphic geometries during the rift to breakup period. In magma-poor margins, crustal stretching is accommodated mainly by brittle faulting and the formation of wide rift basins shaped by numerous graben and half-graben structures. Continental breakup and oceanic crust accretion are often preceded by a localised phase of (hyper-) extension where the upper mantle is embrittled, serpentinized, and exhumed to the surface. In magma-rich margins, the rift basin is narrow and extension is accompanied by a large magmatic supply. Continental breakup and oceanic crust accretion is preceded by the emplacement of a thick volcanic crust juxtaposing and underplating a moderately thinned continental crust. Both magma-poor and magma-rich rifting occur in response to lithospheric extension but the driving forces and processes are believed to be different. In the former extension is assumed to be driven by plate boundary forces, while in the latter extension is supposed to be controlled by sublithospheric mantle dynamics. However, this view fails in explaining observations from many Atlantic conjugate margins where magma-poor and magma-rich segments alternate in a relatively abrupt fashion. This is the case of the Labrador margin where the northern segment shows major magmatic supply during most of the syn-rift phase which culminate in the emplacement of a thick volcanic crust in the transitional domain along with high density bodies underplating the thinned continental crust; while the southern segment is characterized mainly by brittle extension, mantle seprentinization and exhumation prior to continental breakup. In this work, we use seismic and potential field data to describe the crustal and structural architectures of the Labrador margin, and investigate the tectonic and mechanical processes of rifting that may have controlled the magmatic supply in the different segments of the margin.

  6. Seismic characteristics of central Brazil crust and upper mantle: A deep seismic refraction study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soares, J.E.; Berrocal, J.; Fuck, R.A.; Mooney, W.D.; Ventura, D.B.R.

    2006-01-01

    A two-dimensional model of the Brazilian central crust and upper mantle was obtained from the traveltime interpretation of deep seismic refraction data from the Porangatu and Cavalcante lines, each approximately 300 km long. When the lines were deployed, they overlapped by 50 km, forming an E-W transect approximately 530 km long across the Tocantins Province and western Sa??o Francisco Craton. The Tocantins Province formed during the Neoproterozoic when the Sa??o Francisco, the Paranapanema, and the Amazon cratons collided, following the subduction of the former Goia??s ocean basin. Average crustal VP and VP/VS ratios, Moho topography, and lateral discontinuities within crustal layers suggest that the crust beneath central Brazil can be associated with major geological domains recognized at the surface. The Moho is an irregular interface, between 36 and 44 km deep, that shows evidences of first-order tectonic structures. The 8.05 and 8.23 km s-1 P wave velocities identify the upper mantle beneath the Porangatu and Cavalcante lines, respectively. The observed seismic features allow for the identification of (1) the crust has largely felsic composition in the studied region, (2) the absence of the mafic-ultramafic root beneath the Goia??s magmatic arc, and (3) block tectonics in the foreland fold-and-thrust belt of the northern Brasi??lia Belt during the Neoproterozoic. Seismic data also suggested that the Bouguer gravimetric discontinuities are mainly compensated by differences in mass distribution within the lithospheric mantle. Finally, the Goia??s-Tocantins seismic belt can be interpreted as a natural seismic alignment related to the Neoproterozoic mantle domain. Copyright 2006 by the American Geophysical Union.

  7. Rapid cooling rates at an active mid-ocean ridge from zircon thermochronology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmitt, Axel K.; Perfit, Michael R.; Rubin, Kenneth H.; Stockli, Daniel F.; Smith, Matthew C.; Cotsonika, Laurie A.; Zellmer, Georg F.; Ridley, W. Ian

    2011-01-01

    Oceanic spreading ridges are Earth's most productive crust generating environment, but mechanisms and rates of crustal accretion and heat loss are debated. Existing observations on cooling rates are ambiguous regarding the prevalence of conductive vs. convective cooling of lower oceanic crust. Here, we report the discovery and dating of zircon in mid-ocean ridge dacite lavas that constrain magmatic differentiation and cooling rates at an active spreading center. Dacitic lavas erupted on the southern Cleft segment of the Juan de Fuca ridge, an intermediate-rate spreading center, near the intersection with the Blanco transform fault. Their U–Th zircon crystallization ages (29.3-4.6+4.8 ka; 1δ standard error s.e.) overlap with the (U–Th)/He zircon eruption age (32.7 ± 1.6 ka) within uncertainty. Based on similar 238U-230Th disequilibria between southern Cleft dacite glass separates and young mid-ocean ridge basalt (MORB) erupted nearby, differentiation must have occurred rapidly, within ~ 10–20 ka at most. Ti-in-zircon thermometry indicates crystallization at 850–900 °C and pressures > 70–150 MPa are calculated from H2O solubility models. These time-temperature constraints translate into a magma cooling rate of ~ 2 × 10-2 °C/a. This rate is at least one order-of-magnitude faster than those calculated for zircon-bearing plutonic rocks from slow spreading ridges. Such short intervals for differentiation and cooling can only be resolved through uranium-series (238U–230Th) decay in young lavas, and are best explained by dissipating heat convectively at high crustal permeability.

  8. The structure of 0- to 0.2-m.y.-old oceanic crust at 9°N on the East Pacific Rise from expanded spread profiles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vera, E. E.; Mutter, J. C.; Buhl, P.; Orcutt, J. A.; Harding, A. J.; Kappus, M. E.; Detrick, R. S.; Brocher, T. M.

    1990-09-01

    LVZ is deeper, and the LVZ is less pronounced. The bottom of the LVZ is probably located near the bottom of the crust and above the Moho. Moho arrivals are observed in the profiles at zero and at 10 km from the rise axis. Rather than a single discontinuity, these arrivals indicate an approximately 1-km-thick Moho transition zone.

  9. Conductivity structure of crust and mantle in the northeastern Japan prospected by MT and GEMIT method. 1. ; East to west section along 40[degree]40'N traverse

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nabetani, S; Maekawa, K; Uchida, K [Hirosaki Univ., Aomori (Japan). Faculty of Science

    1992-08-31

    In order to investigate geophysical structure, especially conductivity structure, of the crust and the mantle in the northeastern Japan, exploration was carried out by MT and GEMIT method. The GEMIT is an electromagnetic prospecting method recently developed, which means geo-electromagnetic induction tomography. This report concerns the first traverse carried out on the above-mentioned area in 1990. Thirty six observation points were located at latitude 40[degree]35 to 45'N from the sea of Japan to the Pacific Ocean. Three components of geomagnetic field and two horizontal components of electric field were measured at each point. Geomagnetic and differential electric fields detected by a system of three induction magnetometers and two sets of differential electrodes were recorded by 14-bit digital recorder. Planar and sectional distribution of resistivity in the crust and the mantle was profiled been on these data. In this paper, these profiles are shown and structure of the upper and lower crust and the mantle is discussed. 6 refs., 5 figs.

  10. Uptake of elements from seawater by ferromanganese crusts: Solid-phase associations and seawater speciation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koschinsky, A.; Hein, J.R.

    2003-01-01

    Marine Fe-Mn oxyhydroxide crusts form by precipitation of dissolved components from seawater. Three hydrogenetic crust samples (one phosphatized) and two hydrothermal Mn-oxide samples were subjected to a sequential-leaching procedure in order to determine the host phases of 40 elements. Those host-phase associations are discussed with respect to element speciation in seawater. The partitioning of elements between the two major phases, Mn oxide and Fe oxyhydroxide, can in a first-order approximation be explained by a simple sorption model related to the inorganic speciation of the elements in seawater, as has been proposed in earlier models. Free and weakly complexed cations, such as alkali and alkaline earth metals, Mn, Co, Ni, Zn, T1(I), and partly Y, are sorbed preferentially on the negatively charged surface of the MnO2 in hydrogenetic crusts. The driving force is a strong coulombic interaction. All neutral or negatively charged chloro (Cd, Hg, T1), carbonate (Cu, Y, Pb, and U), and hydroxide (Be, Sc, Ti, Fe, Zr, Nb, In, Sn, Sb, Te, Hf, Ta, Bi, Th, and T1(III)) complexes and oxyanions (V, Cr, As, Se, Mo, and W) bind to the slightly positively charged surface of the amorphous FeOOH phase. While coulombic interaction can explain the sorption of the negatively charged species, the binding of neutral species is based on specific chemical interaction. Organic complexation of elements in deep-ocean water seems to be at most of minor importance. Surface oxidation can explain some strong metal associations, e.g. of Co and T1 with the MnO2 and Te with the FeOOH. Sorption reactions initially driven by coulombic forces are often followed by the formation of specific bonds between the adsorbate and the atoms of the oxide surface. Differences in the associations of some metals between the non-phosphatized and phosphatized hydrogenetic crusts and between the hydrogenetic and the hydrothermal samples reflect the different physico-chemical environments of formation and

  11. Snow and Ice Crust Changes over Northern Eurasia since 1966

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bulygina, O.; Groisman, P. Y.; Razuvaev, V.; Radionov, V.

    2009-12-01

    When temperature of snow cover reaches zero Celsius first time since its establishment, snowmelt starts. In many parts of the world this process can be lengthy. The initial amount of heat that “arrives” to the snowpack might be insufficient for complete snowmelt, during the colder nights re-freeze of the melted snow may occur (thus creating the ice crust layers), and a new cold front (or the departure of the warm front that initiated melt) can decrease temperatures below the freezing point again and stop the snowmelt completely. It well can be that first such snowmelt occurs in winter (thaw day) and for several months thereafter snowpack stays on the ground. However, even the first such melt initiates a process of snow metamorphosis on its surface changing snow albedo and generating snow crust as well as on its bottom generating ice crust. Once emerged, the crusts will not disappear until the complete snowmelt. Furthermore, these crusts have numerous pathways of impact on the wild birds and animals in the Arctic environment as well as on domesticated reindeers. In extreme cases, the crusts may kill some wild species and prevent reindeers’ migration and feeding. Ongoing warming in high latitudes created situations when in the western half of Eurasian continent days with thaw became more frequent. Keeping in mind potential detrimental impacts of winter thaws and associated with them snow/ice crust development, it is worthwhile to study directly what are the major features of snow and ice crust over Eurasia and what is their dynamics. For the purpose of this study, we employed the national snow survey data set archived at the Russian Institute for Hydrometeorological Information. The dataset has routine snow surveys run throughout the cold season each decade (during the intense snowmelt, each 5 days) at all meteorological stations of the former USSR, thereafter, in Russia since 1966. Prior to 1966 snow surveys are also available but the methodology of

  12. Syn-collisional felsic magmatism and continental crust growth: A case study from the North Qilian Orogenic Belt at the northern margin of the Tibetan Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Shuo; Niu, Yaoling; Xue, Qiqi

    2018-05-01

    The abundant syn-collisional granitoids produced and preserved at the northern Tibetan Plateau margin provide a prime case for studying the felsic magmatism as well as continental crust growth in response to continental collision. Here we present the results from a systematic study of the syn-collisional granitoids and their mafic magmatic enclaves (MMEs) in the Laohushan (LHS) and Machangshan (MCS) plutons from the North Qilian Orogenic Belt (NQOB). Two types of MMEs from the LHS pluton exhibit identical crystallization age ( 430 Ma) and bulk-rock isotopic compositions to their host granitoids, indicating their genetic link. The phase equilibrium constraints and pressure estimates for amphiboles from the LHS pluton together with the whole rock data suggest that the two types of MMEs represent two evolution products of the same hydrous andesitic magmas. In combination with the data on NQOB syn-collisional granitoids elsewhere, we suggest that the syn-collisional granitoids in the NQOB are material evidence of melting of ocean crust and sediment. The remarkable compositional similarity between the LHS granitoids and the model bulk continental crust in terms of major elements, trace elements, and some key element ratios indicates that the syn-collisional magmatism in the NQOB contributes to net continental crust growth, and that the way of continental crust growth in the Phanerozoic through syn-collisional felsic magmatism (production and preservation) is a straightforward process without the need of petrologically and physically complex processes.

  13. Cyanobacterial crust induction using two non-previously tested cyanobacterial inoculants: crusting capability and role of EPSs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mugnai, Gianmarco; Rossi, Federico; De Philippis, Roberto

    2017-04-01

    The use of cyanobacteria as soil improvers and bio-conditioners (a technique often referred to as algalization) has been studied for decades. Several studies proved that cyanobacteria are feasible eco-friendly candidates to trigger soil fertilization and enrichment from agricultural to arid and hyper-arid systems. This approach can be successful to achieve stabilization and rehabilitation of degraded environments. Much of the effectiveness of algalization is due to the productivity and the characteristics of extracellular polysaccharides (EPSs) which, among their features, embed soil particles and promote the development of a first stable organo-mineral layer (cyanobacterial crusts). In natural settings, cyanobacterial crust induction represents a first step of a succession that may lead to the formation of mature biological soil crusts (Lan et al., 2014). The aim of this research was to investigate the crusting capabilities, and the characteristics of excreted EPSs by two newly tested non-heterocystous cyanobacterial inoculants, in microcosm experiments carried out using oligothrophic sand collected from sand dunes in Negev Desert, Israel. The cyanobacteria tested were Schizothrix AMPL1601, originally isolated from biocrusts collected in Hobq Desert, Inner Mongolia (China) and Leptolyngbia ohadii, originally isolated from biocrusts collected in Negev Desert, Israel. Inoculated microcosms were maintained at 30 °C in a growth chamber under continuous illumination and minimal water availability. Under such stressing conditions, and for a three-months incubation time, the growth and the colonization of the strains in the microcosms were monitored. At the same time, EPSs production and their chemical and macromolecular characteristics were determined by applying a methodology optimized for the purpose. Notably, EPSs were analyzed in two operationally-defined fractions, one more dispersed in the crust matrix (loosely bound EPSs, LB-EPSs) and one more condensed and

  14. 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

  15. Effects of crust and cracks on simulated catchment discharge and soil loss

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stolte, J.; Ritsema, C.J.; Roo, de A.P.J.

    1997-01-01

    Sealing, crusting and cracking of crusts of the soil surface has been observed in many parts of the world in areas with sandy, silty and loamy soils. Sealing and crust formation occurs under the influence of rain storm and drying weather. With prolonged drying, surface crusts might crack, leading to

  16. Exploring the interaction network of the Bacillus subtilis outer coat and crust proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krajčíková, Daniela; Forgáč, Vladimír; Szabo, Adam; Barák, Imrich

    2017-11-01

    Bacillus subtilis spores, representatives of an exceptionally resistant dormant cell type, are encircled by a thick proteinaceous layer called the spore coat. More than 80 proteins assemble into four distinct coat layers: a basement layer, an inner coat, an outer coat and a crust. As the spore develops inside the mother cell, spore coat proteins synthesized in the cytoplasm are gradually deposited onto the prespore surface. A small set of morphogenetic proteins necessary for spore coat morphogenesis are thought to form a scaffold to which the rest of the coat proteins are attached. Extensive localization and proteomic studies using wild type and mutant spores have revealed the arrangement of individual proteins within the spore coat layers. In this study we examined the interactions between the proteins localized to the outer coat and crust using a bacterial two hybrid system. These two layers are composed of at least 25 components. Self-interactions were observed for most proteins and numerous novel interactions were identified. The most interesting contacts are those made with the morphogenetic proteins CotE, CotY and CotZ; these could serve as a basis for understanding the specific roles of particular proteins in spore coat morphogenesis. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  17. The helium flux from the continents and ubiquity of low-3He/4He recycled crust and lithosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Day, James M. D.; Barry, Peter H.; Hilton, David R.; Burgess, Ray; Pearson, D. Graham; Taylor, Lawrence A.

    2015-03-01

    low-3He/4He values of these reservoirs and their distinctive compositions make them probable end-members to explain the compositions of some low-3He/4He OIB, and provide an explanation for the low-3He/4He measured in most HIMU lavas. Continental lithospheric mantle and recycled oceanic crust protoliths are not reservoirs for high-3He/4He and so alternative, volumetrically significant, He-rich reservoirs, such as less-degassed (lower?) mantle, are required to explain high-3He/4He signatures measured in some intraplate lavas. Recycling of oceanic crust represents a fundamental process for the generation of radiogenic noble gases in the mantle, and can therefore be used effectively as tracers for volatile recycling.

  18. A new tectono-magmatic model for the Lofoten/Vesterålen Margin at the outer limit of the Iceland Plume influence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breivik, Asbjørn Johan; Faleide, Jan Inge; Mjelde, Rolf; Flueh, Ernst R.; Murai, Yoshio

    2017-10-01

    The Early Eocene continental breakup was magma-rich and formed part of the North Atlantic Igneous Province. Extrusive and intrusive magmatism was abundant on the continental side, and a thick oceanic crust was produced up to a few m.y. after breakup. However, the extensive magmatism at the Vøring Plateau off mid-Norway died down rapidly northeastwards towards the Lofoten/Vesterålen Margin. In 2003 an Ocean Bottom Seismometer profile was collected from mainland Norway, across Lofoten, and into the deep ocean. Forward/inverse velocity modeling by raytracing reveals a continental margin transitional between magma-rich and magma-poor rifting. For the first time a distinct lower-crustal body typical for volcanic margins has been identified at this outer margin segment, up to 3.5 km thick and ∼50 km wide. On the other hand, expected extrusive magmatism could not be clearly identified here. Strong reflections earlier interpreted as the top of extensive lavas may at least partly represent high-velocity sediments derived from the shelf, and/or fault surfaces. Early post-breakup oceanic crust is moderately thickened (∼8 km), but is reduced to 6 km after 1 m.y. The adjacent continental crystalline crust is extended down to a minimum of 4.5 km thickness. Early plate spreading rates derived from the Norway Basin and the northern Vøring Plateau were used to calculate synthetic magnetic seafloor anomalies, and compared to our ship magnetic profile. It appears that continental breakup took place at ∼53.1 Ma, ∼1 m.y. later than on the Vøring Plateau, consistent with late strong crustal extension. The low interaction between extension and magmatism indicates that mantle plume material was not present at the Lofoten Margin during initial rifting, and that the observed excess magmatism was created by late lateral transport from a nearby pool of plume material into the lithospheric rift zone at breakup time.

  19. Subduction Contributions in the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt: Implications from Lava Chemistry and Hf-Nd-Pb Isotopes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cai, Y.; Goldstein, S. L.; Langmuir, C. H.; Gómez-Tuena, A.; Lagatta, A.; Straub, S. M.; Martín Del Pozzo, A.

    2007-05-01

    Despite thick continental crust, near primitive lavas erupt throughout the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt (TMVB). In order to distinguish and better constrain subduction contributions and effects of crustal contamination, we analyzed samples representing subducting sediments from DSDP Site 487, and Quaternary lavas from stratovolcanoes and cinder cones, including alkaline "high-Nb" lavas from the Sierra Chichinautzin Volcanic Field (SCVF) showing negligible subduction signature in its trace element chemistry and representing melts of the mantle wedge. Our primary observations and implications are: (1) The high-Nb SCVF `intraplate' lavas define a linear trend along the "Nd-Hf mantle-crust array", defining the composition of the mantle wedge. (2) Popocatepetl and Nevado de Toluca stratovolcanoes show the highest Nd and Hf isotope ratios, higher than the `intraplate' lavas, indicating their sources are more "depleted mantle-like" than the regional mantle wedge. (3) The Popo and Toluca chemical and isotopic trends sharply contrast with Pico de Orizaba, which shows classic indications of crustal contamination (e.g. high 207Pb/204Pb, low Nd-Hf isotope ratios), consistent with contamination by local Precambrian crust. (4) Higher Nd-Hf isotopes in Popo and Toluca lavas also correlate with lower Pb isotope ratios, and lower Lu/Hf and Zr/Hf. Together, these data indicate contributions from subducted Pacific oceanic crust and hydrothermal sediment. (5) Popo and Toluca are also enriched in Th/LREE compared with `intraplate' lavas, reflecting subducted sediment contributions. (6) Nd-Hf isotope ratios of hydrothermal sediment from DSDP Site 487 lie on the "seawater array", with high Hf isotope ratios compared to the "mantle-crust array". Popo and Toluca Nd-Hf isotopes display a shallower slope than the "intraplate lava Nd-Hf array", reflecting contributions from hydrothermal sediment. Popocatepetl and Toluca lavas therefore avoid substantial crustal contamination of mantle wedge

  20. Microbe-mediated transformations of marine dissolved organic matter during 2,100 years of natural incubation in the cold, oxic crust of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shah Walter, S. R.; Jaekel, U.; Huber, J. A.; Dittmar, T.; Girguis, P. R.

    2015-12-01

    On the western flank of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, oxic seawater from the deep ocean is downwelled into the basaltic crust, supplying the crustal aquifer with an initial inoculum of organic matter and electron acceptors. Studies have shown that fluids circulating within the crust are minimally altered from original seawater, making this subsurface environment a unique natural experiment in which the fate of marine organic matter and the limitations of microbial adaptability in the context of reduced carbon supply can be examined. To make the subsurface crustal aquifer accessible, two CORK (Circulation Obviation Retrofit Kit) observatories have been installed at North Pond, a sediment-filled depression beneath the oligotrophic Sargasso Sea. Radiocarbon analysis of dissolved inorganic (DIC) and organic carbon (DOC) in samples recovered from these observatories show uncoupled aging between DOC and DIC with Δ14C values of DOC as low as -933‰ despite isolation from the open ocean for, at most, 2,100 years. This extreme value is part of a general trend of decreasing DOC δ13C and Δ14C values with increasing incubation time within the aquifer. Combined with reduced concentrations of DOC, our results argue for selective microbial oxidation of the youngest, most 13C-enriched components of downwelled DOC, possibly identifying these as characteristics of the more bioavailable fractions of deep-ocean dissolved organic matter. They also suggest that microbial oxidation during low-temperature hydrothermal circulation could be an important sink for aged marine dissolved organic matter.

  1. The crustal thickness and lithospheric structure of active and inactive volcanic arc terrains in Fiji and Tonga

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, J.; Wiens, D.; Wei, S. S.; Zha, Y.; Julià, J.; Cai, C.; Chen, Y. J.

    2015-12-01

    In order to investigate the crustal thickness and lithospheric structure beneath active and inactive volcanic arcs in Fiji and Tonga, we analyzed receiver functions from teleseismic P waves as well as Rayleigh waves from teleseismic earthquakes and ambient noise. The data were recorded by stations from three previous temporary seismic arrays deployed on the islands during 1993-1995, 2001-2002, and 2009-2010. Receiver functions were calculated with an iterative deconvolution in the time domain. We used an H-k stacking method to get preliminary Moho depth estimates under the island arcs, after assuming constant seismic average crustal P velocity. We also determined the shear wave velocity structure beneath each station from a 1-D combined inversion of receiver functions and Rayleigh wave phase velocity dispersion curves from ambient noise cross correlation at 8s - 20s and teleseismic surface waves at 20s-90s. The joint inversion models reveal that the Moho beneath the main islands of the Fiji plateau is 26-31 km deep, whereas the crust under the outer islands - including the Lau Ridge - is generally thinner, with Moho depths of 21-23.5 km. The thinnest crust (16 km) is found beneath Moala Island located between the Fiji Platform and the Lau Ridge. Crustal thickness beneath several Tonga islands is about 18-20 km. A relatively high velocity lithosphere (Vs of 4.4 - 4.5 km/s) extends to only about 60 km depth beneath the outer Fiji Islands and Lau Ridge, but to depths of 90 km underneath the main islands of the Fiji Plateau. The much thicker crust and lithosphere of the Fiji plateau relative to the Lau Ridge and Tonga Arc reflects its much longer geological history of arc crust building, going back to the early Miocene.

  2. Chronology of early lunar crust

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dasch, E.J.; Nyquist, L.E.; Ryder, G.

    1988-01-01

    The chronology of lunar rocks is summarized. The oldest pristine (i.e., lacking meteoritic contamination of admixed components) lunar rock, recently dated with Sm-Nd by Lugmair, is a ferroan anorthosite, with an age of 4.44 + 0.02 Ga. Ages of Mg-suite rocks (4.1 to 4.5 Ga) have large uncertainties, so that age differences between lunar plutonic rock suites cannot yet be resolved. Most mare basalts crystallized between 3.1 and 3.9 Ga. The vast bulk of the lunar crust, therefore, formed before the oldest preserved terrestrial rocks. If the Moon accreted at 4.56 Ga, then 120 Ma may have elapsed before lunar crust was formed

  3. Thick or Thin Ice Shell on Europa?

    Science.gov (United States)

    2007-01-01

    Scientists are all but certain that Europa has an ocean underneath its icy surface, but they do not know how thick this ice might be. This artist concept illustrates two possible cut-away views through Europa's ice shell. In both, heat escapes, possibly volcanically, from Europa's rocky mantle and is carried upward by buoyant oceanic currents. If the heat from below is intense and the ice shell is thin enough (left), the ice shell can directly melt, causing what are called 'chaos' on Europa, regions of what appear to be broken, rotated and tilted ice blocks. On the other hand, if the ice shell is sufficiently thick (right), the less intense interior heat will be transferred to the warmer ice at the bottom of the shell, and additional heat is generated by tidal squeezing of the warmer ice. This warmer ice will slowly rise, flowing as glaciers do on Earth, and the slow but steady motion may also disrupt the extremely cold, brittle ice at the surface. Europa is no larger than Earth's moon, and its internal heating stems from its eccentric orbit about Jupiter, seen in the distance. As