Strain-induced magma degassing: insights from simple-shear experiments on bubble bearing melts
Experiments have been performed to determine the effect of deformation on degassing of bubble-bearing melts. Cylindrical specimens of phonolitic composition, initial water content of 1.5 wt.% and 2 vol.% bubbles, have been deformed in simple-shear (torsional configuration) in an internally heated Paterson-type pressure vessel at temperatures of 798–848 K, 100–180 MPa confining pressure and different final strains. Micro-structural analyses of the samples before and after deformation have been performed in two and three dimensions using optical microscopy, a nanotomography machine and synchrotron tomography. The water content of the glasses before and after deformation has been measured using Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR). In samples strained up to a total of γ ∼ 2 the bubbles record accurately the total strain, whereas at higher strains (γ ∼ 10) the bubbles become very flattened and elongate in the direction of shear. The residual water content of the glasses remains constant up to a strain of γ ∼ 2 and then decreases to about 0.2 wt.% at γ ∼ 10. Results show that strain enhances bubble coalescence and degassing even at low bubble volume-fractions. Noticeably, deformation produced a strongly water under-saturated melt. This suggests that degassing may occur at great depths in the volcanic conduit and may force the magma to become super-cooled early during ascent to the Earth’s surface potentially contributing to the genesis of obsidian.
KeywordsMagma deformation Strain-induced degassing Bubble deformation Obsidian banding
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