Related topics: volcano

Study reveals intense CO2 degassing process in magmas

The Okinawa Trough is a newly formed back-arc basin located in the outer margin of the continental shelf of the East China Sea. The submarine hydrothermal activities are widely developed in the Okinawa Trough. A typical feature ...

Was plate tectonics occurring when life first formed on Earth?

Earth is a dynamic and constantly changing planet. From the formation of mountains and oceans to the eruption of volcanoes, the surface of our planet is in a constant state of flux. At the heart of these changes lies the ...

Surprise magma chamber growing under Mediterranean volcano

Using a novel imaging technique for volcanoes that produces high-resolution pictures of seismic wave properties, a new study reveals a large, previously undetected body of mobile magma underneath Kolumbo, an active submarine ...

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Magma is molten rock that is found beneath the surface of the Earth, and may also exist on other terrestrial planets. Besides molten rock, magma may also contain suspended crystals and gas bubbles. Magma often collects in a magma chamber inside a volcano. Magma is capable of intrusion into adjacent rocks, extrusion onto the surface as lava, and explosive ejection as tephra to form pyroclastic rock.

Magma is a complex high-temperature fluid substance. Temperatures of most magmas are in the range 700°C to 1300°C (or 1292°F to 2372°F), but very rare carbonatite melts may be as cool as 600°C, and komatiite melts may have been as hot as 1600°C. Most are silicate solutions.

Environments of magma formation and compositions are commonly correlated. Environments include subduction zones, continental rift zones, mid-oceanic ridges, and hotspots, some of which are interpreted as mantle plumes. Despite being found in such widespread locales, the bulk of the Earth's crust and mantle is not molten. Rather, most of the Earth takes the form of a rheid, a form of solid that can move or deform under pressure. Magma, as liquid, preferentially forms in high temperature, low pressure environments within several kilometers of the Earth's surface.

Magma compositions may evolve after formation by fractional crystallization, contamination, and magma mixing. By definition, all igneous rock is formed from magma.

While the study of magma has historically relied on observing magma in the form of lava outflows, magma was discovered in situ for the first time in 2008.

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