Recycled arc mantle recovered from the Mid-Atlantic Ridge
Urann, Benjamin M.
Dick, Henry J. B.
Casey, John F.
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Plate tectonics and mantle dynamics necessitate mantle recycling throughout Earth’s history, yet direct geochemical evidence for mantle reprocessing remains elusive. Here we present evidence of recycled supra-subduction zone mantle wedge peridotite dredged from the Mid-Atlantic Ridge near 16°30′N. Peridotite trace-element characteristics are inconsistent with fractional anhydrous melting typically associated with a mid-ocean ridge setting. Instead, the samples are best explained by hydrous flux melting which changed the melting reactions such that clinopyroxene was not exhausted at high degrees of melting and was retained in the residuum. Based on along-axis ridge depth variations, this buoyant refractory arc mantle is likely compensated at depth by denser, likely garnet-rich, lithologies within the mantle column. Our results suggest that highly refractory arc mantle relicts are entrained in the upper mantle and may constitute >60% of the upper mantle by volume. These highly refractory mantle domains, which contribute little to mantle melting, are under-represented in compilations of mantle composition that rely on inverted basalt compositions alone.
© The Author(s), 2020. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License. The definitive version was published in Urann, B. M., Dick, H. J. B., Parnell-Turner, R., & Casey, J. F. Recycled arc mantle recovered from the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. Nature Communications, 11(1), (2020): 3887, doi:10.1038/s41467-020-17604-8.
Suggested CitationUrann, B. M., Dick, H. J. B., Parnell-Turner, R., & Casey, J. F. (2020). Recycled arc mantle recovered from the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. Nature Communications, 11(1), 3887.
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