Seismic Evidence for a Mantle Transition Zone Origin of the Wudalianchi and Halaha Volcanoes in Northeast China

Wei Wei, James O.S. Hammond, Dapeng Zhao, Jiandong Xu, Qian Liu, Yaning Gu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Citations (Scopus)


There exists much debate about origins of Cretaceous to present volcanism in northeast (NE) China. Here we present high-resolution seismic images of the upper mantle beneath NE China obtained by inverting P wave traveltime data recorded by two dense linear arrays. The inclusion of the new data set has greatly improved sampling of the upper mantle beneath the study region, providing tight constraints on the seismic structure under the intraplate Wudalianchi and Halaha volcanoes. Local-scale low P wave velocity (low-Vp) anomalies are revealed in the shallow mantle beneath the two volcanoes, whereas a large-scale high-Vp zone is imaged in the mantle transition zone. These new results suggest that the two volcanoes, though located at different sites above the stagnant Pacific slab in the mantle transition zone, are likely related to the deep subduction and dehydration of the Pacific slab, possibly through hot and wet upwelling in the big mantle wedge beneath Wudalianchi and through deeper hydrous upwelling related to slab avalanche beneath Halaha. Our results also reveal other striking features, such as high-Vp anomalies resting atop the 410-km discontinuity beneath the Great Xing'an Range and the Songliao Basin, which are attributed to detached continental lithosphere. The delamination most likely occurred in the Cretaceous, which induced widespread magmatism in NE China.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)398-416
Number of pages19
JournalGeochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Jan


  • Halaha volcano
  • Pacific slab
  • Wudalianchi volcano
  • lithospheric delamination
  • mantle transition zone
  • seismic tomography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Geochemistry and Petrology


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