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Sensitivity of seafloor bathymetry to climate-driven fluctuations in mid-ocean ridge magma supply
Olive, J.-A.; Behn, M.D.; Ito, G.; Buck, W.R.; Escartin, J.; Howell, S. (2015). Sensitivity of seafloor bathymetry to climate-driven fluctuations in mid-ocean ridge magma supply . Science (Wash.) 350(6258): 310-313 . hdl.handle.net/10.1126/science.aad0715
In: Science (Washington). American Association for the Advancement of Science: New York, N.Y. ISSN 0036-8075; e-ISSN 1095-9203, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Keyword
    Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Olive, J.-A.
  • Behn, M.D.
  • Ito, G.
  • Buck, W.R.
  • Escartin, J.
  • Howell, S.

Abstract
    Recent studies have proposed that the bathymetric fabric of the seafloor formed at mid-ocean ridges records rapid (23,000 to 100,000 years) fluctuations in ridge magma supply caused by sealevel changes that modulate melt production in the underlying mantle. Using quantitative models of faulting and magma emplacement, we demonstrate that, in fact, seafloor-shaping processes act as a low-pass filter on variations in magma supply, strongly damping fluctuations shorter than about 100,000 years. We show that the systematic decrease in dominant seafloor wavelengths with increasing spreading rate is best explained by a model of fault growth and abandonment under a steady magma input. This provides a robust framework for deciphering the footprint of mantle melting in the fabric of abyssal hills, the most common topographic feature on Earth.

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