Oceanography The Official Magazine of
The Oceanography Society
Volume 20 Issue 01

View Issue TOC
Volume 20, No. 1
Pages 102 - 115


Ridge-Hotspot Interactions: What Mid-Ocean Ridges Tell Us About Deep Earth Processes

By Jérôme Dyment , Jian Lin, and Edward T. Baker 
Jump to
Citation Copyright & Usage
First Paragraph

Earth is a thermal engine that dissipates its internal heat primarily through convection. The buoyant rise of hot material transports heat to the surface from the deep interior while colder material sinks at subduction zones. Mid-ocean ridges and hotspots are major expressions of heat dissipation at Earth’s surface, as evidenced by their abundant volcanic activity. Ridges and hotspots, however, could differ significantly in their origins. Ridges are linear features that wind more than 60,000 km around the globe, constituting the major diverging boundaries of Earth’s tectonic plates. Hotspots, on the other hand, are localized regions of abnormally robust magmatism and distinctive geochemical anomalies (Figure 1).


Dyment, J., J. Lin, and E.T. Baker. 2007. Ridge-hotspot interactions: What mid-ocean ridges tell us about deep Earth processes. Oceanography 20(1):102–115, https://doi.org/10.5670/oceanog.2007.84.

Copyright & Usage

This is an open access article made available under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution, and reproduction in any medium or format as long as users cite the materials appropriately, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate the changes that were made to the original content. Images, animations, videos, or other third-party material used in articles are included in the Creative Commons license unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If the material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission directly from the license holder to reproduce the material.