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A rolling mill effect in asthenosphere beneath oceanic spreading centers
Rabinowicz, M.; Nicolas, A.; Vigneresse, J.L. (1984). A rolling mill effect in asthenosphere beneath oceanic spreading centers. Earth Planet. Sci. Lett. 67(1): 97-108
In: Earth and Planetary Science Letters. Elsevier: Amsterdam. ISSN 0012-821X, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in  Authors 

Keywords
    Asthenosphere; Crustal structure; Kinematics; Oceanic crust; Spreading centres; Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Rabinowicz, M.
  • Nicolas, A.
  • Vigneresse, J.L.

Abstract
    From structural studies in seventeen ophiolite massifs, information has been drawn about the activity of the asthenosphere beneath oceanic spreading centers. This information, together with geophysical data pertaining to oceanic ridges, has been integrated into a numerical model. It is inferred that for a last-spreading ridge (>5 cm/yr) a local diapiric uprise of melted peridodite is superimposed to the main circulation driven by the lithosphere drifting. As a result, the upward flow splits, at a depth of 35 km, into a 10-20 km wide axial jet and a horizontal flow diverging away from the ridge. The small diapir channels upward most of the periodotites. Magmatic activity in the crust is thus constrained to an area of similar horizontal extension, in agreement with ophiolitic and oceanic data.

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