Tag Archives: tectonics

Subducted seawater the source of fluid-rich diamonds


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Subducting oceanic plates that dive hundreds of kilometers beneath Earth’s surface carry with them cargoes of sediment and seawater. As the plate heats up the deeper it sinks, this seawater not only initiates melting in the rock above it, but can also trigger diamond formation, suggest the authors of a new study in Nature. Read more

How the west was made: western North American orogenies


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Western North America is a patchwork is hundreds of terranes, which are crustal pieces or microplates (think of islands), that collided with and attached to North America across hundreds of millions of years -- adding piece-by-piece to the continent's width and building mountains as they produced volcanoes or pushed up sediments and rocks. This posts provides a very simplified timeline of the major orogenies and terranes that affected western North America. For a more in-depth look, see the resources below. Read more

Mount Sinabung, Indonesia October 2014 eruptions


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Mount Sinabung—a 2,460-meter-high Indonesian stratovolcano which has erupted in 2010, 2013, and early 2014—kicked off October with ongoing magnificent eruptions, extruding viscous intermediate lava lobes which collapsed, sending break-neck speed pyroclastic flows as far as 3.5-4 km. Compare this Pelean eruption to last month's devastating phreatic eruption in Japan, another island arc. Read more