My science/technology-related thoughts, sometimes controversial, sometimes can be based on limited knowledge base, logic can be non-perfect as well. I develop my vision in iterations. Don't take this blog as an attempt to convince anybody in anything.
Each post in this blog reflects my level of understanding of Tectonics of the Earth at the time the post was written; so, some posts may not necessarily be correct now.

07 July, 2011

Static volume of hotter magma under the crust is likely to be the effect of the process in the above crust.

   One of the next posts will be on Basalt Flows. The post is expected to be somewhat lengthy. To make it shorter let one concept to occupy separate (this) post. The concept relates to the previous post "Ridge Push, Or Bridge Over Troubled Magma." ( http://divergent-boundaries.blogspot.com/2011/05/ridge-push-or-bridge-over-troubled.html ). Basically it's about what's the cause and what's the effect - static hotspot or the processes in the crust.

   Traditional Plate Tectonics tells us that basalt flows are the products of the mantle plumes (hot spots). As for me, there are some issues with the concept. Should some hot (and therefore less dense) plume occur in the mantle depth, it wont be upwelling by shortest path. Instead, as the Earth is rotating, the Coriolis effect would make the path to be very curvy, and as the velocity within the stream varies greatly, the stream would get "blurred", that is, it would have to get mixed with the magma it penetrates through.

   In other words the plume stream (should it occur) has to mix with magma it gets through, and the length of the affected area has to be comparable to the distance the stream had made, that is it has to stretch by thousands kilometers. The temperature within the volume will be only slightly higher than the temperature of the neighboring magma. And, instead of trying to penetrate the crust, the volume would rather keep on its movement.

   In other words, if the volume is not moving, then the hot spot's nature has nothing to do with magma depths. Its nature belongs to processes that are taking place right in its ceiling - oceanic crust. Again, in other words, static volume of hotter magma is unlikely to be the cause of what's happening with crust, rather the static volume of hotter magma is likely to be the effect of the process in the above crust.

    I think, more practical research should be held on the hot spots. The articles below, as for me, cast some doubts on Hawaiian volcanoes to be the effect of a mantle hotspot.
MIT News, "Hotspot in the hot seat. New seismic imaging alters the picture beneath Hawaii" by Jennifer Chu, MIT News Office, May 27, 2011. ( http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/2011/hawaii-hotspot-0527.html )
Science, "Another Look Beneath Hawaii Knocks Islands Off Their Riser Pipe" by Richard A. Kerr, 26 May 2011. ( http://news.sciencemag.org/sciencenow/2011/05/another-look-beneath-hawaii-knoc.html )


   The assumption that "static volume of hotter magma under the crust is likely to be the effect of the process in the above crust" is crucial in many Plate Tectonics topics, to name a few: the mechanism behind the diverging boundaries, intraplate diverging processes, basalt flows, some types of calderas (Yellowstone), etc.
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reposted from http://sukhotinsky.blogspot.com/

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edited: Aug-17, 2011

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