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Science. 1996 Jun 7;272(5267):1464-8.

Lithospheric Contributions to Arc Magmatism: Isotope Variations Along Strike in Volcanoes of Honshu, Japan

Author information

A. B. Kersting, Earth Science Division and Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, L-231, Post Office Box 808, Livermore, CA 94551, USA. R. J. Arculus, Key Centre for the Geochemical Evolution and Metallogeny of Continents, Department of Geology, Australian National University, Canberra, ACT 0200, Australia. D. A. Gust, School of Geology, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, QLD 4001, Australia.


Major chemical exchange between the crust and mantle occurs in subduction zone environments, profoundly affecting the chemical evolution of Earth. The relative contributions of the subducting slab, mantle wedge, and arc lithosphere to the generation of island arc magmas, and ultimately new continental crust, are controversial. Isotopic data for lavas from a transect of volcanoes in a single arc segment of northern Honshu, Japan, have distinct variations coincident with changes in crustal lithology. These data imply that the relatively thin crustal lithosphere is an active geochemical filter for all traversing magmas and is responsible for significant modification of primary mantle melts.


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