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Journal Articles Earth and Planetary Science Letters Year : 2023

Temporal and spatial variation of seafloor spreading at ultraslow spreading ridges: Contribution of marine magnetics

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Abstract

The heterogenous magma supply at ultraslow spreading ridges creates diverse seafloor morphologies and lithospheric structures, which in turn generate a large variability in marine magnetic anomalies. The variability brings difficulties to interpret the evolution of oceanic lithosphere. On the other hand, different magnetic signatures of different seafloors provide an opportunity to identify the modes of seafloor spreading on the ultraslow spreading ridges. Here, we modeled several across-axis magnetic profiles selected from the Gakkel Ridge, Southwest Indian Ridge and Mid-Cayman Spreading Center to explore the lithospheric structure and seafloor spreading processes. Considering conjugate flanks, we observed three modes of seafloor spreading, Magmatic vs Magmatic, Magmatic vs Tectonic, and Tectonic vs Tectonic, on the three ultraslow spreading ridges. These three spreading modes reflect a strong, intermediate, and starved magma supply, respectively. Furthermore, four alternances of the different spreading modes were identified including the Magmatic vs Magmatic to Magmatic vs Tectonic, Magmatic vs Tectonic to Tectonic vs Magmatic, Tectonic vs Tectonic to Magmatic vs Magmatic, and Mixed. These alternances of spreading modes in across-axis direction suggest oscillations of the magma supply at different levels. Variation in the modes of seafloor spreading on four nearby profiles over the Mid-Cayman Spreading Center reveals the evolution of magma supply along the axis of this short ridge.
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Dates and versions

insu-03947010 , version 1 (19-01-2023)

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Fei Zhou, Jérôme Dyment. Temporal and spatial variation of seafloor spreading at ultraslow spreading ridges: Contribution of marine magnetics. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 2023, 602, ⟨10.1016/j.epsl.2022.117957⟩. ⟨insu-03947010⟩
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