CHEN Jie, TAO Chunhui, LIANG Jin, LIAO Shili, DONG Chuanwan, LI Huaiming, LI Wei, WANG Yuan, YUE Xihe, HE Yonghua. Newly discovered hydrothermal fields along the ultraslow-spreading Southwest Indian Ridge around 63°E[J]. Acta Oceanologica Sinica, 2018, 37(11): 61-67. doi: 10.1007/s13131-018-1333-y
Citation: CHEN Jie, TAO Chunhui, LIANG Jin, LIAO Shili, DONG Chuanwan, LI Huaiming, LI Wei, WANG Yuan, YUE Xihe, HE Yonghua. Newly discovered hydrothermal fields along the ultraslow-spreading Southwest Indian Ridge around 63°E[J]. Acta Oceanologica Sinica, 2018, 37(11): 61-67. doi: 10.1007/s13131-018-1333-y

Newly discovered hydrothermal fields along the ultraslow-spreading Southwest Indian Ridge around 63°E

doi: 10.1007/s13131-018-1333-y
  • Received Date: 2018-05-05
  • The ultraslow-spreading Southwest Indian Ridge (SWIR) to the east of the Melville fracture zone is characterized by very low melt supply and intensive tectonic activity. Due to its weak thermal budget and extremely slow spreading rate, the easternmost SWIR was considered to be devoid of hydrothermal activity until the discovery of the inactive Mt. Jourdanne hydrothermal field (27°51'S, 63°56'E) in 1998. During the COMRA DY115-20 cruise in 2009, two additional hydrothermal fields (i.e., the Tiancheng (27°51'S, 63°55'E) and Tianzuo (27°57'S, 63°32'E) fields) were discovered. Further detailed investigations of these two hydrothermal sites were conducted by Chinese manned submersible Jiaolong in 2014-2015. The Tiancheng filed can be characterized as a low-temperature (up to 13.2℃) diffuse flow hydrothermal field, and is hosted by fractured basalts with hydrothermal fauna widespread on the seafloor. The Tianzuo hydrothermal field is an inactive sulfide field, which is hosted by ultramafic rocks and controlled by detachment fault. The discovery of the three hydrothermal fields around Segment #11 which receives more melt than the regional average, provided evidence for local enhanced magmatism providing heat source to drive hydrothermal circulation. We further imply that hydrothermal activity and sulfide deposits may be rather promising along the easternmost SWIR.
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