Ritsema, J; Xu, WB; Stixrude, L; Lithgow-Bertelloni, C; (2009) Estimates of the transition zone temperature in a mechanically mixed upper mantle. EARTH PLANET SC LETT , 277 (1-2) 244 - 252. 10.1016/j.epsl.2008.10.024.
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Partial melting of mantle peridotite generates a physically and chemically layered oceanic lithosphere that is cycled back into the mantle in subduction zones. Stirring times of the mantle are too long to allow for complete re-homogenization of subducted basalt and harzburgite, given the low chemical diffusivity of the solid mantle. This Suggests that the Earth's mantle is a mechanical mixture of basaltic and harzburgitic components. Using a recently developed thermodynamic formulism we determine the phase equilibria and the seismic properties of a mantle comprised of a mechanical mixture of basalt and harzburgite (MM) and a homogeneous mantle (EA) with identical pyrolitic bulk chemistry. We use the theoretical shear velocity profiles as a new thermometer of the mantle below the magma-genetic zone by modeling the difference Delta T410-660 between traveltimes of shear wave reflections off the 410-km and 660-km with the potential temperature T-p. Delta T410-660 are measured from waveform stacks. They indicate that, over 1000+ km wave lengths, the temperature varies by about 200 K. Lowest and highest temperatures are resolved for the western Pacific subduction zones and the central Pacific, respectively. This variation is similar for the EA and MM and is in excellent agreement with estimates of transition zone thickness and shear velocity variations. The median value of T-p for the EA is 1720 K. It is about 1625 K for the MM, a value that is in better agreement with the Normal-MORB values of 1610 +/- 40 K inferred from olivine-liquid equilibria given that our sampling region encompasses the Western Pacific subduction zones and the oldest parts of the Pacific Plate. We argue therefore that a mechanical mixed mantle. with generally higher velocities and steeper velocities gradients, represents a better physical reference model than a model based on a fully equilibrated assemblage. (C) 2008 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
|Title:||Estimates of the transition zone temperature in a mechanically mixed upper mantle|
|Keywords:||mantle, mechanical mixing, mineral physics, travel times, temperature, DISCONTINUITY TOPOGRAPHY, CHEMICAL HETEROGENEITY, 520-KM DISCONTINUITY, CONVECTING MANTLE, OCEANIC-CRUST, EARTHS MANTLE, CONSTRAINTS, PRECURSORS, EVOLUTION, VELOCITY|
|UCL classification:||UCL > School of BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences > Earth Sciences|
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