Quantifying the correlation between mobile continents and elevated temperatures in the subcontinental mantle
Jain, C.; Rozel, A.B.; Tackley, P.J.
Continents influence the mantle's convective wavelength and the heat flow escaping from the planet's surface. Over the last few decades, many numerical and analytical studies have contributed to the debate about whether the continents can warm up the subcontinental mantle or not and if they do, then to what extent? However, a consensus regarding the exact nature and magnitude of this correlation between continents and elevated temperatures in the subcontinental mantle remains to be achieved. By conducting a systematic parameter study using 2‐D global mantle convection simulations with mobile continents, we provide qualitative and quantitative observations on the nature of this correlation. In our incompressible and compressible convection models, we observe the general processes of downwellings bringing cold material into the mantle along continental margins and a subsequent buildup of warm thermal anomalies underneath the continents. We compute the amplitude and degree of this correlation using spectral decomposition of the temperature and composition fields. The dominant degree of correlation evolves with time and changes with continental configuration. Using simple empirical fits, we observe that this correlation decreases with increasing core temperature, number of continents, internal heating, or decreasing reference viscosity. We also report simple regressions of the time dependence of this correlation. Additionally, we show that decompression melting as a result of a mantle upwelling or small‐scale sublithospheric convection leads to voluminous volcanism. The emplacement of this dense basalt‐eclogite material breaks the continents apart and destroys the correlation.
Jain, C., Rozel, A., & Tackley, P. (2019). Quantifying the correlation between mobile continents and elevated temperatures in the subcontinental mantle. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 20(3), 1358-1386. https://doi.org/10.1029/2018gc007586
|Journal Article Type||Article|
|Acceptance Date||Jan 25, 2019|
|Online Publication Date||Mar 10, 2019|
|Publication Date||Mar 31, 2019|
|Deposit Date||Mar 14, 2019|
|Publicly Available Date||Sep 11, 2019|
|Journal||Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems|
|Publisher||American Geophysical Union|
|Peer Reviewed||Peer Reviewed|
Published Journal Article
Jain, C., Rozel, A. B. & Tackley, P. J. (2019). Quantifying the correlation between mobile continents and elevated temperatures in the subcontinental mantle. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems 20(3): 1358-1386. 10.1029/2018GC007586. To view the published open abstract, go to https://doi.org/ and enter the DOI.
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