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Nat Commun. 2017 Oct 23;8(1):1097. doi: 10.1038/s41467-017-01256-2.

The effect of giant lateral collapses on magma pathways and the location of volcanism.

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German Research Centre for Geosciences (GFZ), Potsdam, 14473, Germany.
German Research Centre for Geosciences (GFZ), Potsdam, 14473, Germany.


Flank instability and lateral collapse are recurrent processes during the structural evolution of volcanic edifices, and they affect and are affected by magmatic activity. It is known that dyke intrusions have the potential to destabilise the flanks of a volcano, and that lateral collapses may change the style of volcanism and the arrangement of shallow dykes. However, the effect of a large lateral collapse on the location of a new eruptive centre remains unclear. Here, we use a numerical approach to simulate the pathways of magmatic intrusions underneath the volcanic edifice, after the stress redistribution resulting from a large lateral collapse. Our simulations are quantitatively validated against the observations at Fogo volcano, Cabo Verde. The results reveal that a lateral collapse can trigger a significant deflection of deep magma pathways in the crust, favouring the formation of a new eruptive centre within the collapse embayment. Our results have implications for the long-term evolution of intraplate volcanic ocean islands.

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