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Published November 14, 1985 | public
Journal Article

Hotspot magmas can form by fractionation and contamination of mid-ocean ridge basalts


Melts ascending from deep reservoirs and trapped beneath thick lithosphere exchange heat with and partially melt the shallow mantle as they crystallize. Basalts erupting through thick lithosphere are more likely to have experienced deep crystal fractionation and contamination than those at mature spreading centres. Geochemical data for ocean island and other hotspot magmas do not require a primitive or lower mantle source.

Additional Information

© 1985 Nature Publishing Group. Received 20 May; accepted 28 August 1985. I thank S. Maaloe, F. Frey and C. Hawkesworth for helpful comments. This work was supported in part by NSF grant EAR 811-5236. Contribution 4151, Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences, CalTech, Pasadena.

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October 26, 2023