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Published 2007 | public
Book Section - Chapter

Ridge-crossing seamount chains: A nonthermal approach


In this article we examine whether it is viable to form an age-progressive ridge-crossing seamount chain using a nonplume mechanism. Nonthermal melt sources considered include fertile mantle blobs and subsolidus mantle while lithospheric stresses generated at the ridge and at ridge-transform intersections (RTIs) are tapped to bring the mantle to the surface. Finite element models, analog models, and an analysis of the Tristan de Cunha chain all show that ridge-crossing seamount chains may be created using these mechanisms. Essentially, as a ridge migrates or reorganizes, excess magmatism may appear to switch sides of the ridge as areas of extensional stress at the RTI migrate with the ridge.

Additional Information

© 2007 The Geological Society of America. Manuscript accepted by the Society 31 January 2007. Many thanks to Jeff Karson and David Naar for their extremely helpful reviews, much appreciated. Also thanks to Norm Sleep for pointing out some pertinent literature. The editors, Gillian Foulger and Donna Jurdy, were also very helpful in the preparation of the manuscript.

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