Three-dimensional seismic structure of a Mid-Atlantic Ridge segment characterized by active detachment faulting (Trans-Atlantic Geotraverse, 25°55′N-26°20′N)
MetadataShow full item record
We use air gun shots recorded by ocean bottom seismometers (OBSs) to generate a three-dimensional (3D) P-wave tomographic velocity model of the Trans-Atlantic Geotraverse (TAG) segment of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, and to search for evidence of reflections from a shallow crustal fault interface. Near-vertical reflections were observed in some of the seismic records from OBSs deployed within the active seismicity zone defined by microearthquake hypocenters. Forward modeling of synthetic seismograms indicates that these reflections are consistent with a fault interface dipping at a low angle toward the ridge axis. Our observations suggest that the fault zone may extend beneath the volcanic blocks forming the eastern valley wall. Our 3D tomographic results show that the across-axis structural asymmetry associated with detachment faulting extends at least 15 km to the east of the ridge axis, indicating that detachment faulting and uplifting of deep lithologies has been occurring at the TAG segment for at least the last ∼1.35 Myr. The velocity model contains a 5 km by 8 km velocity anomaly within the detachment footwall. This anomaly, which is present beneath the active TAG hydrothermal mound, is characterized by a velocity inversion at 1.5–2.0 km below seafloor underlain by reduced P-wave velocities (∼6.2–6.5 km/s compared to surrounding areas ∼7.0–7.2 km/s) extending down to 3.5 km below seafloor. The velocity anomaly likely results from some combination of thermal and/or hydrothermal processes, and in either case our results suggest that hydrothermal fluids circulate within the upper section of the detachment footwall beneath the active mound.
Author Posting. © American Geophysical Union, 2012. This article is posted here by permission of American Geophysical Union for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Geochemistry Geophysics Geosystems 13 (2012): Q0AG13, doi:10.1029/2012GC004454.
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
Collins, John A.; Smith, Deborah K.; McGuire, Jeffrey J. (American Geophysical Union, 2012-10-09)At the oceanic core complex that forms the Atlantis Massif at 30°N on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, slip along the detachment fault for the last 1.5–2 Ma has brought lower crust and mantle rocks to the seafloor. Hydroacoustic ...
Crustal structure of the Trans-Atlantic Geotraverse (TAG) segment (Mid-Atlantic Ridge, 26°10′N) : implications for the nature of hydrothermal circulation and detachment faulting at slow spreading ridges Canales, J. Pablo; Sohn, Robert A.; deMartin, Brian J. (American Geophysical Union, 2007-08-09)New seismic refraction data reveal that hydrothermal circulation at the Trans-Atlantic Geotraverse (TAG) hydrothermal field on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge at 26°10′N is not driven by energy extracted from shallow or mid-crustal ...
Heterogeneous seismic velocity structure of the upper lithosphere at Kane oceanic core complex, Mid-Atlantic Ridge Xu, Min; Canales, J. Pablo; Tucholke, Brian E.; DuBois, David L. (American Geophysical Union, 2009-10-10)The Kane oceanic core complex (OCC) is a large, corrugated megamullion that was formed by a long-lived detachment fault at the axis of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge adjacent to Kane Fracture Zone between 2.1 and 3.3 Ma. We use ...