Oceanography The Official Magazine of
The Oceanography Society
Volume 23 Issue 01

View Issue TOC
Volume 23, No. 1
Pages 176 - 181

Seamounts in the Subduction Factory

Hubert Staudigel Anthony A.P. Koppers Terry A. Plank Barry B. Hanan
Article Abstract

The “Subduction Factory” is a metaphor for the geochemical processing of subducted oceanic crust and sediment into components that are either incorporated into the volcanic arc or recycled into Earth’s mantle. Seamounts may be a significant source of material to the Subduction Factory, in particular, by providing trace elements such as K, Ba, La, Ce, U, Th, Pb, Rb, and Cs. Seamount subduction might also play a role in the global distribution of chemical mantle heterogeneities. Neither one of these effects of seamount subduction is well understood. The Izu-Bonin-Marianas (IBM) volcanic arc is a region where the potential impact of seamount subduction may be explored most effectively. There, sections of the IBM arc and many of the incoming seamounts display unusually high 206Pb/204Pb ratios, which offer a particularly promising geochemical tracer that may help quantify seamount input into the Subduction Factory. Although this process remains to be explored in a quantitative manner, it is apparent that the demise of seamounts in subduction zones offers an exciting research target with important consequences for globally relevant geochemical processes.

Citation

Staudigel, H., A.A.P. Koppers, T.A. Plank, and B.B. Hanan. 2010. Seamounts in the subduction factory. Oceanography 23(1):176–181, https://doi.org/10.5670/oceanog.2010.69.

References

Cogné J.P., and E. Humler. 2004. Temporal variation of oceanic spreading and crustal production rates during the last 180 My. Earth and Planetary Science Letters 227:427–439.

Fisher, A.T., and C.G. Wheat. 2010. Seamounts as conduits for massive fluid, heat, and solute fluxes on ridge flanks. Oceanography 23(1):74–87.

Hanan, B., T. Rooney, A. Pietruszka, L. Tisn, D. Hahm, P. Castillo, D. Hilton, and J. Hawkins. 2008. Hf and Pb isotope constraints on the source origin of Northern Lau Basin back-arc basin basalts. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 72(12):A347. 

Hawkesworth, C.J., S.P. Turner, F. McDermott, D.W. Peate, and P. van Calsteren. 1997. U-Th isotopes in arc magmas: Implications for element transfer from the subducted crust. Science 276:551–555. 

Hoernle, K, D.L. Abt, K.M. Fischer, H. Nichols, F. Hauff, G.A. Abers, P. van den Bogaard, K. Heydolph, G. Alvarado, M. Protti, W. Strauch. 2008. Arc-parallel flow in the mantle wedge beneath Costa Rica and Nicaragua. Nature 451:1.094–1,097, http://10.1038/nature06550.

Ishizuka, O., R.N. Taylor, M. Yuasa, J.A. Milton, R.W. Nesbitt, K. Uto, and I. Sakamoto. 2007. Processes controlling along-arc isotopic variation of the southern Izu-Bonin arc. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems 8, Q06008, http://10.1029/2006GC001475.

Kelley, K.A., T. Plank L. Farr, J. Ludden, and H. Staudigel. 2005. Subduction cycling of U, Th and Pb. Earth and Planetary Science Letters 234:369–383. 

Kneller, E.A., and P.E. van Keken. 2007. Trench-parallel flow and seismic anisotropy in the Mariana and Andean subduction systems. Nature 450(7173):1,222–1,225. 

Konter, J.G., B.B. Hanan, J. Blichert-Toft, A.A.P. Koppers, T. Plank, and H. Staudigel. 2008. One hundred million years of mantle geochemical history suggest the retiring of mantle plumes is premature. Earth and Planetary Science Letters 275:285–295. 

Koppers, A.A.P., H. Staudigel, M.S. Pringle, and J.R. Wijbrans. 2003. Short-lived and discontinuous intraplate volcanism in the South Pacific: Hot spots or extensional volcanism? Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems 4(10), 1089, http://10.1029/2003GC000533

Koppers, A.A.P., and A.B. Watts. 2010. Intraplate seamounts as a window into deep Earth processes. Oceanography 23(1):42–57.

Oakley, A.J., B. Taylor, and G.F. Moore. 2008. Pacific Plate subduction beneath the central Mariana and Izu-Bonin fore arcs: New insights from an old margin. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems 9, Q06003, http://10.1029/2007GC001820.

Pearce, J.A., R.J. Stern, S.H. Bloomer, and P. Fryer. 2005. Geochemical mapping of the Mariana arc-basin system: Implications for the nature and distribution of subduction components. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems 6, Q07006, http://10.1029/2004GC000895.

Peate, D.W., and J.A. Pearce. 1998. Causes of spatial compositional variations in Mariana arc lavas: Trace element evidence. The Island Arc 7:479–495. 

Plank, T., and C.H. Langmuir. 1998. The chemical composition of subducting sediment: Implications for the crust and mantle. Chemical Geology 145:325–394

Pozgay, S.H., D.A. Wiens, J.A. Conder, H. Shiobara, and H. Sugiok. 2007. Complex mantle flow in the Mariana subduction system: Evidence from shear wave splitting. Geophysical Journal International 170(1):371–386.

Staudigel, H., K.-H. Park, M.S. Pringle, J.L. Rubenstone, W.H.F. Smith, and A. Zindler. 1991. The longevity of the south Pacific isotope and thermal anomaly. Earth and Planetary Science Letters 102:24–44.

Staudigel, H., T. Plank, W. White, and H.-U. Schmincke. 1996. Geochemical fluxes during seafloor alteration of the basaltic upper oceanic crust: DSDP Sites 417–418 (Overview). Pp. 19–38 in Subduction Top to Bottom. G.E. Bebout, D.W. Scholl, S.H. Kirby, and J.P. Platt, eds, American Geophysical Union Monograph Series 96, Washington, DC.

Staudigel, H., and D.A. Clague. 2010. The geological history of deep-sea volcanoes: Biosphere, hydrosphere, and lithosphere interactions. Oceanography 23(1):58–71.

Stern, R.J., N.C. Smoot, and M. Rubin. 1984. Unzipping of the volcano arc, Japan. Tectonophysics 102:153–174. 

Stern, R.J., M.C. Jackson, P. Fryer, and E. Ito. 1993. O, Sr, Nd and Pb isotopic composition of the Kasuga cross-chain in the Mariana arc: A new perspective on the K-h relationship. Earth and Planetary Science Letters 119:459–475.

Stern, R.J., E. Kohut, S.H. Bloomer, M. Leybourne, M. Fouch, and J. Vervoot. 2006. Subduction factory processes beneath the Guguan cross-chain, Mariana Arc: No role for sediments, are serpentinites important? Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology 151(2):202–221.

Stern, R.J., M.J. Fouch, and S.L. Klemperer. 2003. An overview of the Izu-Bonin-Mariana subduction factory. Pp. 175–222 in Inside the Subduction Factory. J. Eiler, ed., Geophysical Monograph Series Volume 138, American Geophysical Union, Washington, DC.

Sumino, H., K. Notsua, S. Nakaib, M. Satoa, K. Nagaoa, M. Hosoec, and H. Wakitaa. 2004. Noble gas and carbon isotopes of fumarolic gas from Iwojima Volcano, Izu–Ogasawara arc, Japan: Implications for the origin of unusual arc magmatism. Chemical Geology 209:153–173.

Sun, C-H., and R.J. Stern. 2001. Genesis of Mariana shoshonites: Contribution of the subduction component. Journal of Geophysical Research 106:589–608.

Turner, S., and C. Hawkesworth. 1998. Using geochemistry to map mantle flow beneath the Lau Basin. Geology 26:1,019–1,022.

Tollstrup, D.L., and J.B. Gill. 2005. Hafnium systematics of the Mariana arc: Evidence for sediment melt and residual phases. Geology 33:737–740.

Watts, A.B., A.A.P. Koppers, and D.P. Robinson. 2010. Seamount subduction and earthquakes. Oceanography 23(1):166–173.

Wheat, C.G., P. Fryer, K. Takai, and S. Hulme. 2010. Spotlight 9: South Chamarro Seamount. Oceanography 23(1):174–175.

Williams, D.L., and R.P. von Herzen. 1974. Heat loss from the Earth: new estimate. Geology 2:327–328.

Zindler, A., and S. Hart. 1986. Chemical geodynamics. Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences 14:493–571.