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Lookup NU author(s): Dr Anne-Sophie Meriaux
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The interaction between mantle plumes and subducting slabs is well accepted, but the influence of slabs on plumes has more often been portrayed than the reverse. Here we present three-dimensional upper mantle laboratory models in which a compositional plume rises underneath a subducting plate. Slab/plume buoyancy flux ratios ranged between 7 and 18. The models exhibit a two-way interaction. While the plume conduit increasingly tilts away from the trench as a result of slab rollback-induced toroidal mantle flow, the slab subduction rate decreases as a function of the amount of plume buoyancy opposing that of the slab, which gets subducted beneath the slab. We propose that our models apply to the Hainan/Manila system and explain the recently imaged tilt of the Hainan plume by the Manila slab-induced mantle return flow. The Hainan plume could lessen the Manila subduction rate from 8 Ma into the future.
Author(s): Meriaux CA, Duarte JC, Wouter PS, Meriaux AS
Publication type: Article
Publication status: Published
Journal: Geophysical Research Letters
Print publication date: 28/07/2015
Online publication date: 23/07/2015
Acceptance date: 03/06/2015
ISSN (print): 0094-8276
ISSN (electronic): 1944-8007
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell Publishnig, Inc.
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