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Published 1970 | Published
Book Section - Chapter Open

Petrology of the mantle


Recent seismic results indicate a series of transition regions or "discontinuities" in the mantle. These can be interpreted in terms of phase changes in olivine, pyroxene, and garnet. The low-velocity zone is due to partial melting, and it may also be enriched in heavy elements relative to adjacent regions of the mantle. Free oscillation interpretations indicate that the upper mantle has a density of at least 3.5 gm/cm^3. Seismic data for the lower mantle combined with shock wave data suggest that the lower mantle is richer in FeO than previously supposed. The lower mantle is closer to pyroxene in composition than to olivine.

Additional Information

© 1970 Mineralogical Society of America. Last updated 2012-06-06. Contribution No. 1708, Division of Geological Sciences, California Institute of Technology. The author benefitted from discussions with E. Gaffney and A. E. Ringwood. G. Davies kindly recalculated the densities of the high pressure shock phases given in Table 1. M. Smith, T. Jordan, and F. Klein were involved in various aspects of the research reported in this paper. This research was supported by National Science Foundation Grant GA 12703. An open access publication of the Mineralogical Society of America.

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August 19, 2023
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