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Compositional heterogeneity near the base of the mantle transition zone beneath Hawaii

Yu, Chunquan and Day, Elizabeth A. and de Hoop, Maarten V. and Campillo, Michel and Goes, Saskia and Blythe, Rachel A. and van der Hilst, Robert D. (2018) Compositional heterogeneity near the base of the mantle transition zone beneath Hawaii. Nature Communications, 9 . Art. No. 1266. ISSN 2041-1723.

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Global seismic discontinuities near 410 and 660 km depth in Earth’s mantle are expressions of solid-state phase transitions. These transitions modulate thermal and material fluxes across the mantle and variations in their depth are often attributed to temperature anomalies. Here we use novel seismic array analysis of SS waves reflecting off the 410 and 660 below the Hawaiian hotspot. We find amplitude–distance trends in reflectivity that imply lateral variations in wavespeed and density contrasts across 660 for which thermodynamic modeling precludes a thermal origin. No such variations are found along the 410. The inferred 660 contrasts can be explained by mantle composition varying from average (pyrolitic) mantle beneath Hawaii to a mixture with more melt-depleted harzburgite southeast of the hotspot. Such compositional segregation was predicted, from petrological and numerical convection studies, to occur near hot deep mantle upwellings like the one often invoked to cause volcanic activity on Hawaii.

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URLURL TypeDescription
Yu, Chunquan0000-0001-8681-8572
Day, Elizabeth A.0000-0003-0432-5817
van der Hilst, Robert D.0000-0003-1650-6818
Additional Information:© 2018 The Author(s). This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit Received: 03 November 2017; Accepted: 02 March 2018; Published online: 28 March 2018. Data availability: All broadband seismic waveforms are retrieved from IRIS-DMC (Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology, Data Management Center). Results obtained in this study are available upon request from the corresponding author. Broadband seismic waveforms were downloaded from IRIS-DMC (Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology, Data Management Center). M.d.H. was supported by the Simons Foundation and NSF-DMS 1559587, S.G. by NERC NE/J008028/1, R.v.d.H. acknowledges a Royal Society Fellowship to support travel to Imperial College, and M.C. is Schlumberger Visiting Professor at MIT. Author Contributions: R.v.d.H., M.d.H. and C.Y. designed the project. C.Y. and E.D. processed the seismic data. C.Y., M.d.H., M.C., and R.v.d.H. conducted the amplitude versus offset analysis. S.G., E.D., and R.B. performed thermodynamic modeling. C.Y., R.v.d.H. and S.G. wrote the paper and all authors contributed to the explanation of the results. The authors declare no competing interests.
Group:Seismological Laboratory
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Simons FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Natural Environment Research Council (NERC)NE/J008028/1
Subject Keywords:Geodynamics; Geophysics; Mineralogy; Seismology
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20180330-075922025
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:85517
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:30 Mar 2018 16:21
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 19:32

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