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MTS studies on the upper mantle conductivity in China


Based on the data from more than 200 MTS sites distributed within different areas of the Chinese continent, general characteristics of upper mantle conductivity have been described. At least two conductive layers have been found in the upper mantle of some areas. The first is thin with a resistivity of a modicum to few tens Ωm; the second one is thicker with a resistivity of one to Ωm. Nearly 300 heat-flow values indicate that there exists an exponential correspondent relationship between a depth of the upper mantle conductive layer with a thickness and an average value of heat flow. Based on the above results, the top depth map of this upper mantle conductive layer has been outlined for parts of the Chinese continent. This conductive layer is basically consistent with the low velocity zone in the upper mantle, and Cenozoic tectonism and current seismicity are significantly related to the variation of depth of the conductive layer in the upper mantle. The possible origins of the conductive layers in the upper mantle have been discussed here.

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Guodong, L. MTS studies on the upper mantle conductivity in China. PAGEOPH 125, 465–482 (1987).

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Key words

  • Magnetotelluric
  • heat-flow
  • upper mantle conductivity
  • Chinese continent