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Magma genesis, plate tectonics, and chemical differentiation of the Earth

Wyllie, Peter J. (1988) Magma genesis, plate tectonics, and chemical differentiation of the Earth. Reviews of Geophysics, 26 (3). pp. 370-404. ISSN 8755-1209. doi:10.1029/RG026i003p00370.

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Magma genesis, migration, and eruption have played prominent roles in the chemical differentiation of the Earth. Plate tectonics has provided the framework of tectonic environments for different suites of igneous rocks and the dynamic mechanisms for moving masses of rock into melting regions. Petrology is rooted in geophysics. Petrological and geophysical processes are calibrated by the phase equilibria of the materials. The geochemistry of basalts and mantle xenoliths demonstrates that the mantle is heterogeneous. The geochemical reservoirs are related to mantle convection, with interpretation of a mantle layered or stratified or peppered with blobs. Seismic tomography is beginning to reveal the density distribution of the mantle in three dimensions, and together with fluid mechanical models and interpretation of the geoid, closer limits are being placed on mantle convection. Petrological cross sections constructed for various tectonic environments by transferring phase boundaries for source rocks onto assumed thermal structures provide physical frameworks for consideration of magmatic and metasomatic events, with examples being given for basalts, andesites, and granites at ocean-continent convergent plate boundaries, basalts and nephelinites from a thermal plume beneath Hawaii, kimberlites in cratons, nephelinites from continental rifts, and anorogenic granites. The fluid dynamics of rock-melt-vapor systems exerts strong control on igneous processes and chemical differentiation. Unravelling the processes during subduction remains one of the major problems for understanding mantle heterogeneities and the evolution of continents.

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Additional Information:Copyright 1988 by the American Geophysical Union. (Received December 9, 1987; accepted March 17, 1988.) Paper number 8R0242. This research was supported by the Earth Sciences section of the U.S. National Science Foundation, grants EAR84-16583 and EAR85-06857. For preprints and comments, I thank C. J. Allègre, D. L. Anderson, R. W. Clayton, B. H. Hager, and T. Tanimoto. California Institute of Technology Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences contribution 4565. The Editor thanks J. Longhi for his assistance in evaluating this paper.
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Caltech Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences4565
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Official Citation:Wyllie, P. J. (1988), Magma genesis, plate tectonics, and chemical differentiation of the Earth, Rev. Geophys., 26(3), 370–404, doi:10.1029/RG026i003p00370.
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:51278
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:05 Nov 2014 18:32
Last Modified:10 Nov 2021 19:08

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