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Early evolution of the crust-mantle systemNd isotopic data indicate that most Archean igneous rocks including compositions ranging from komatiite to tonalite are derived from undepleted or depleted upper mantle sources. If sampling is representative, only a few require enriched sources. A major unresolved question is the fate of the material removed from the upper mantle leaving early depleted sources as residue. One possibility is that widespread depletion of the early mantle resulted from a period of early degassing and magmatism. Rare gas isotopic data, in particular 129Xe/130Xe ratios, seem to demand that the upper mantle was extensively degassed at or before 4.4 b.y. and this led to rapid growth of the atmosphere and oceans. The lower mantle, however, was not significantly degassed during this event. It is likely that such widespread degassing and magmatism of the upper mantle transferred significant quantities of incompatible elements into the uppermost mantle or crust. Once formed, such an enriched fraction should resist recycling into the mantle and collect at or near the Earth's surface. One possibility is that it collects chiefly in a zone of partial melting, analogous to the present low-velocity zone at the base of the lithosphere.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Condie, K. C. (New Mexico Inst. of Mining and Technology Socorro, NM, United States)
Date Acquired
August 12, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 1985
Publication Information
Publication: Lunar and Planetary Inst. Workshop on the Early Earth: The Interval from Accretion to the Older Archean
Subject Category
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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IDRelationTitle19850024749Analytic PrimaryWorkshop on the Early Earth: The Interval from Accretion to the Older Archean