Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Deep magmatic plumbing of mid-ocean ridges revealed

25.08.2005


New images suggest that the Earth’s lower oceanic crust is generated from multiple magma sources

Some of the highest quality images ever taken of the Earth’s lower crust reveal that the upper and lower crust form in two distinctly different ways. A team led by researchers from Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory will publish the results of their work in the August 25 issue of the journal Nature.

The Earth’s oceanic crust is formed from magma bodies located beneath mid-ocean ridges. Although axial magma chambers, magma bodies located in the mid-crust, are known to be responsible for generating the upper oceanic crust, it has so far been unclear if the lower crust is formed from the same source or if it primarily arises from deeper "magma lenses" -- smaller bodies located at or near the base of the crust.



Researchers from Lamont-Doherty as well as the Scripps Institution of Oceanography and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution collected seismic data of the oceanic crust beneath the seafloor off the coast of Washington, Oregon and northern California. To form the images, they analyzed sound waves that bounced off of structures deep in the Earth, a process similar to that of creating an ultrasound image. The resulting images are the first of their kind showing solidified lenses and sills, narrow lateral intrusions of magma, embedded within the crust/mantle boundary known as the Moho transition zone. The presence of such bodies that deep near a mid-ocean ridge suggests that the lower crust is at least partially formed from several smaller sources of magma rather than from a single large source located in the middle of the crust.

"This demonstrates quite strongly that the process of crustal formation is more complex than generally believed," said Mladen Nedimovic, lead author on the study and a Doherty Associate Research Scientist at Lamont-Doherty. "It also favors the emerging view that volcanoes have a complicated plumbing system consisting of many interconnected sills and magma conduits. We obviously still have a lot to learn about what goes on beneath the surface of the Earth."

Ken Kostel | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.columbia.edu
http://www.earth.columbia.edu
http://www.ldeo.columbia.edu

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Unraveling the nature of 'whistlers' from space in the lab

A new study sheds light on how ultralow frequency radio waves and plasmas interact

Scientists at the University of California, Los Angeles present new research on a curious cosmic phenomenon known as "whistlers" -- very low frequency packets...

Im Focus: New interactive machine learning tool makes car designs more aerodynamic

Scientists develop first tool to use machine learning methods to compute flow around interactively designable 3D objects. Tool will be presented at this year’s prestigious SIGGRAPH conference.

When engineers or designers want to test the aerodynamic properties of the newly designed shape of a car, airplane, or other object, they would normally model...

Im Focus: Robots as 'pump attendants': TU Graz develops robot-controlled rapid charging system for e-vehicles

Researchers from TU Graz and their industry partners have unveiled a world first: the prototype of a robot-controlled, high-speed combined charging system (CCS) for electric vehicles that enables series charging of cars in various parking positions.

Global demand for electric vehicles is forecast to rise sharply: by 2025, the number of new vehicle registrations is expected to reach 25 million per year....

Im Focus: The “TRiC” to folding actin

Proteins must be folded correctly to fulfill their molecular functions in cells. Molecular assistants called chaperones help proteins exploit their inbuilt folding potential and reach the correct three-dimensional structure. Researchers at the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry (MPIB) have demonstrated that actin, the most abundant protein in higher developed cells, does not have the inbuilt potential to fold and instead requires special assistance to fold into its active state. The chaperone TRiC uses a previously undescribed mechanism to perform actin folding. The study was recently published in the journal Cell.

Actin is the most abundant protein in highly developed cells and has diverse functions in processes like cell stabilization, cell division and muscle...

Im Focus: Lining up surprising behaviors of superconductor with one of the world's strongest magnets

Scientists have discovered that the electrical resistance of a copper-oxide compound depends on the magnetic field in a very unusual way -- a finding that could help direct the search for materials that can perfectly conduct electricity at room temperatur

What happens when really powerful magnets--capable of producing magnetic fields nearly two million times stronger than Earth's--are applied to materials that...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Within reach of the Universe

08.08.2018 | Event News

A journey through the history of microscopy – new exhibition opens at the MDC

27.07.2018 | Event News

2018 Work Research Conference

25.07.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Staying in Shape

16.08.2018 | Life Sciences

Diving robots find Antarctic seas exhale surprising amounts of carbon dioxide in winter

16.08.2018 | Earth Sciences

Protein droplets keep neurons at the ready and immune system in balance

16.08.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>