News

Researchers discover 'missing' piece of Hawaii's formation

Posted on Nov. 20, 2020

An oceanic plateau has been observed for the first time in Earth’s lower mantle, pushing Hawaii’s birthplace back to 100 million years.

The Hawaiian-Emperor seamount chain, including the current Hawaiian volcanoes, was created by the Hawaiian mantle plume.

Image Source: Carolina Lithgow-Bertelloni, UCLA

The Hawaiian-Emperor seamount chain, including the current Hawaiian volcanoes, was created by the Hawaiian mantle plume. Researchers discovered an oceanic plateau at ~810 km depth beneath eastern Russia. It was created by the Hawaiian mantle plume head during the initiation stage of the Hawaiian hot spot ~100 million years ago, and subducted into the Kamchatka Trench 20–30 million years ago.

The team of researchers included Songqiao “Shawn” Wei from Michigan State University; Peter M. Shearer from Scripps Institute of Oceanography; Carolina Lithgow-Bertelloni from the University of California, Los Angeles; Lars Stixrude from the University of California, Los Angeles; and Dongdong Tian from MSU.

Read More:
https://science.sciencemag.org/content/370/6519/983

https://msutoday.msu.edu/news/2020/hawaii-pancake-discovery