Constraints on Melt Movement Beneath the East Pacific Rise From 230Th-238U Disequilibrium

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Science  04 Jan 2002:
Vol. 295, Issue 5552, pp. 107-110
DOI: 10.1126/science.1064295

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We report 230Th-238U disequilibrium data on mid-ocean ridge basalts recovered 5 to 40 kilometers off the ridge axis near 9°30′N of the East Pacific Rise. These data indicate near-symmetrical eruptions of normal mid-ocean ridge basalts (NMORBs) and incompatible element–enriched mid-ocean ridge basalts (EMORBs) as far as 20 kilometers off axis. Our results suggest large-scale subsurface lateral transport of NMORB melt at 19 to 21 centimeters per year and also provide constraints on the petrogenesis of EMORBs of off-axis origin.

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