Skip to main page content
Access keys NCBI Homepage MyNCBI Homepage Main Content Main Navigation
, 444 (7119), 605-9

Petrology and Thermal Structure of the Hawaiian Plume From Mauna Kea Volcano


Petrology and Thermal Structure of the Hawaiian Plume From Mauna Kea Volcano

Claude Herzberg. Nature.


There is uncertainty about whether the abundant tholeiitic lavas on Hawaii are the product of melt from peridotite or pyroxenite/eclogite rocks. Using a parameterization of melting experiments on peridotite with glass analyses from the Hawaii Scientific Deep Project 2 on Mauna Kea volcano, I show here that a small population of the core samples had fractionated from a peridotite-source primary magma. Most lavas, however, differentiated from magmas that were too deficient in CaO and enriched in NiO (ref. 2) to have formed from a peridotite source. For these, experiments indicate that they were produced by the melting of garnet pyroxenite, a lithology that had formed in a second stage by reaction of peridotite with partial melts of subducted oceanic crust. Samples in the Hawaiian core are therefore consistent with previous suggestions that pyroxenite occurs in a host peridotite, and both contribute to melt production. Primary magma compositions vary down the drill core, and these reveal evidence for temperature variations within the underlying mantle plume. Mauna Kea magmatism is represented in other Hawaiian volcanoes, and provides a key for a general understanding of melt production in lithologically heterogeneous mantle.

Similar articles

See all similar articles

Cited by 2 PubMed Central articles

  • Can We Identify Source Lithology of Basalt?
    ZF Yang et al. Sci Rep 3, 1856. PMID 23676779.
    The nature of source rocks of basaltic magmas plays a fundamental role in understanding the composition, structure and evolution of the solid earth. However, identificati …
  • Petrological Evidence for Secular Cooling in Mantle Plumes
    C Herzberg et al. Nature 458 (7238), 619-22. PMID 19340079.
    Geological mapping and geochronological studies have shown much lower eruption rates for ocean island basalts (OIBs) in comparison with those of lavas from large igneous …

LinkOut - more resources