HAL will be down for maintenance from Friday, June 10 at 4pm through Monday, June 13 at 9am. More information
Skip to Main content Skip to Navigation
Journal articles

The remarkable longevity of submarine plumes: Implications for the hydrothermal input of iron to the deep-ocean

Abstract : The longevity of submarine plumes generated at sea-floor hydrothermal systems constrains the hydrothermal input of chemical species into the deep-ocean. Decades of observations of episodic “event plumes” suggest that a key process governing the dynamics of an hydrothermal cloud spreading out laterally from a buoyant rising plume is the production of internal layering. Here, we use analog experiments on turbulent, hot particle-laden plumes and clouds to show that this layering occurs where particle diffusive convection driven by the differential diffusion of heat and small mineral precipitates gives rise to a large scale double diffusive instability. Where hydrothermal clouds are enriched in fine minerals, this “particle diffusive convection” can extend the longevity of an event plume to 2 yr after its emplacement. The very long residence time imposed by diffusive convective effects enables complete dissolution of fine sulfide and sulfate minerals. We develop a new theoretical model that includes both sedimentation and dissolution processes to quantify the potential amount of iron produced by the dissolution of iron-sulfide minerals settling through the cloud by diffusive convection. A key prediction is that the concentration of dissolved iron in hydrothermal clouds can reach up to 19±3 nM, which represents about 5% of the global hydrothermal discharge. If these results are representative of all hydrothermal vent fields, hydrothermal systems could provide 75% of the global budget of dissolved iron in the deep-ocean. Regionally, this flux is expected to scale in magnitude with mid-ocean ridge heat flow, consistent with observations and global ocean models.
Document type :
Journal articles
Complete list of metadata

https://hal-insu.archives-ouvertes.fr/insu-03581757
Contributor : Nathalie Pothier Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Sunday, February 20, 2022 - 3:24:13 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, February 22, 2022 - 3:36:01 AM

Identifiers

Citation

G. Carazzo, A. M. Jellinek, A. V. Turchyn. The remarkable longevity of submarine plumes: Implications for the hydrothermal input of iron to the deep-ocean. EARTH AND PLANETARY SCIENCE LETTERS, 2013, 382, pp.66-76. ⟨10.1016/j.epsl.2013.09.008⟩. ⟨insu-03581757⟩

Share

Metrics

Record views

4