Crypto-Magma Chambers Beneath Mt Fuji

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Journal Article: Crypto-Magma Chambers Beneath Mt Fuji

Mt. Fuji consists dominantly of basalt. A study of olivine-hosted melt-inclusions from layers of air-fall scoria, however, shows clear evidence of andesitic liquids. Whole rock compositions show a narrow range of SiO2, but a wide range of FeO*/MgO and incompatible elements. Phenocrystic plagioclase generally shows bi-modal distributions in compositional frequency, while most olivine phenocrysts show uni-modal distribution with reverse zoning and often contain andesitic melt-inclusions. These suggest that magmas erupted from Fuji are generated through mixing between basaltic and more SiO2-rich (often andesitic) end-members. We propose that Fuji's magmatic plumbing system consists of at least two magma chambers: a relatively deep (~20 km) basaltic one and a relatively shallow (~ 8-9 km) and more SiO2-rich one. Evolved basalts with wide compositional ranges of incompatible elements are generated in the deep basaltic magma chamber by prevalent fractional crystallization of pyroxenes with olivine and calcic plagioclase at high pressure. Meanwhile basaltic magma left behind by the previous eruption in the conduit accumulates in a shallow magma chamber, and is differentiated to more SiO2-rich composition by fractional crystallization of olivine, less-calcic plagioclase, and clinopyroxene. Shortly before a new eruption, a large amount of evolved basaltic magma containing calcic plagioclase rises from the deeper magma chamber and is mixed with the more SiO2-rich magma in the shallow chamber, to generate the hybrid basaltic magma.

Takayuki Kaneko, Atsushi Yasuda, Toshitsugu Fujii and Mitsuhiro Yoshimoto

Published Journal 
Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research, 2010

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Takayuki Kaneko,Atsushi Yasuda,Toshitsugu Fujii,Mitsuhiro Yoshimoto. 2010. Crypto-Magma Chambers Beneath Mt Fuji. Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research. (!) .