New Seismic Evidence for the Origin of Arc and Back-Arc Magmas

  • Dapeng Zhao
  • Sadato Ueki
  • Yukihisa Nishizono
  • Akira Yamada


We used high-resolution seismic tomography to probe into the arc and back-arc magmatism and volcanism of the Japan subduction zone. Prominent zones with low-velocity, high Poisson’s ratio, high-attenuation and strong seismic anisotropy are revealed in the crust and uppermost mantle beneath the active volcanoes, and they exist in the central portion of the mantle wedge under the volcanic front and back-arc region, roughly parallel with the subducting oceanic plate. The anomalous zones in the mantle wedge are connected with the subducting slab at a depth of 90–150 km, while they also exhibit along-arc variations. These seismological results indicate that the arc and back-arc magmas are caused by a combination of corner flow (convection) in the mantle wedge and fluids resulting from the dehydration process of the subducting oceanic plate.


Mantle Wedge Active Volcano Uppermost Mantle Volcanic Front Corner Flow 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This work was partially supported by grants (Kiban-B 11440134, Kiban-A 17204037) to D. Zhao from Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS). Two anonymous reviewers provided thoughtful review comments which improved the manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dapeng Zhao
    • 1
  • Sadato Ueki
    • 1
  • Yukihisa Nishizono
    • 2
  • Akira Yamada
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of GeophysicsTohoku UniversitySendaiJapan
  2. 2.West Japan Engineering Consultants, Inc.FukuokaJapan
  3. 3.Geodynamics Research CenterEhime UniversityMatsuyamaJapan

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