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Plates Vs Plumes


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Table of Contents

Preface, ix 1 From plate tectonics to plumes, and back again, 1 1.1 Volcanoes, and exceptional volcanoes, 1 1.2 Early beginnings: Continental drift and its rejection, 1 1.3 Emergence of the Plume hypothesis, 6 1.4 Predictions of the Plume hypothesis, 11 1.5 Lists of plumes, 13 1.6 Testing plume predictions, 21 1.7 A quick tour of Hawaii and Iceland, 23 1.8 Moving on: Holism and alternatives, 26 1.9 The Plate hypothesis, 26 1.10 Predictions of the Plate hypothesis, 35 1.11 Testing the Plate hypothesis, 35 1.12 Revisiting Hawaii and Iceland, 36 1.13 Questions and problems, 37 1.14 Exercises for the student, 37 2 Vertical motions, 38 2.1 Introduction, 38 2.2 Predictions of the Plume hypothesis, 39 2.3 Predictions of the Plate hypothesis, 40 2.4 Comparison of the predictions of the Plume and Plate hypotheses, 43 2.5 Observations, 43 2.6 Plume variants, 73 2.7 Discussion, 74 2.8 Exercises for the student, 76 3 Volcanism, 78 3.1 Introduction, 78 3.2 Predictions of the Plume hypothesis, 84 3.3 Predictions of the Plate hypothesis, 86 3.4 Comparison of the predictions of the Plate and Plume hypotheses, 91 3.5 Observations, 92 3.6 Plume variants, 113 3.7 Discussion, 114 3.8 Exercises for the student, 116 4 Time progressions and relative fi xity of melting anomalies, 118 4.1 Introduction, 118 4.2 Methods, 120 4.3 Predictions of the Plume hypothesis, 122 4.4 Predictions of the Plate hypothesis, 122 4.5 Observations, 123 4.6 Hotspot reference frames, 134 4.7 Plume variants, 1370 4.8 Discussion, 140 4.9 Exercises for the student, 141 5 Seismology, 143 5.1 Introduction, 143 5.2 Seismological techniques, 148 5.3 Predictions of the Plume hypothesis, 153 5.4 Predictions of the Plate hypothesis, 154 5.5 Observations, 155 5.6 Global observations, 179 5.7 Plume variants, 184 5.8 Discussion, 185 5.9 Exercises for the student, 188 6 Temperature and heat, 189 6.1 Introduction, 189 6.2 Methods, 195 6.3 Predictions of the Plume hypothesis, 203 6.4 Predictions of the Plate hypothesis, 205 6.5 Observations, 206 6.6 Variants of the Plume hypothesis, 222 6.7 Discussion, 223 6.8 Exercises for the student, 225 7 Petrology and geochemistry, 227 7.1 Introduction, 227 7.2 Some basics, 230 7.3 Predictions of the Plume hypothesis, 245 7.4 Predictions of the Plate hypothesis, 246 7.5 Proposed deep-mantle- and coremantle-boundary tracers, 246 7.6 A few highlights from melting anomalies, 252 7.7 Plume variants, 261 7.8 Discussion, 263 7.9 Exercises for the student, 265 8 Synthesis, 267 8.1 Introduction, 267 8.2 Mantle convection, 275 8.3 An unfalsifi able hypothesis, 277 8.4 Diversity: a smoking gun, 284 8.5 The need for joined-up science, 284 8.6 The future, 286 8.7 Exercises for the student, 287 References, 288 Index, 319 Colour plate section (starting after page 180)

About the Author

Gillian Foulger is Professor of Geophysics at the University of Durham where she has worked since 1985 on earthquake seismology and plate tectonics. She lived and researched in Iceland for seven years, where she acquired a mistrust of theories that do not fit practical observations without contortion. She manages the world-famous website and is widely acclaimed for leading the global debate regarding the existence of mantle plumes. For this she was awarded the prestigious Price Medal by the Royal Astronomical Society in 2005.


Nevertheless I strongly recommend this book both forstudents and researchers. It is ideal for use in classroomdiscussion projects, or in lunch time discussion meetings. It is clearly written and well illustrated and includeshundreds of useful references as recent as 2010. (Bull Volcanol, 3 April 2012) As such, it is a valuable work for advanced undergraduateand graduate students, but also for researchers from manyspecialties in geology, geophysics, geochemistry andgeography. (Pure and Applied Geophysics, 1April 2013) "It is highly recommended to all OUGS members, who couldconsider reading the first and last chapters, together with one ortwo of the main chapters, as a minimum." (Open UniversityGeological Society Journal, 1 November 2011)"In general, I found the book crisply and clearly written, easy toread, and liberally illustrated. It is also a wonderful summary ofa wide range of volcanic provinces in time and space, as well as aprovocative review of what we think we know and don't know ofPlanet Earth and deep mantle dynamics. It will be an invaluableresource for teachers of Earth science, ranging fromgeomorphologists to volcanologists." (Geobulletin, 1 March 2011) "This is knee-deep geophysics, but too fascinating to put down.As the title says, there are conflicting views of how and why theearth recycles itself...very strong views... It goes to greatlengths to explain the theories of continental drift through platetectonics that took half a century to be accepted by mainstreamgeology." (Janet Tanaka, 2011) "This new textbook is ideal for a graduate-level seminar on theongoing controversy over plumes." (, 2011) "I have much pleasure in recommending this book, a distillationof global geodynamics information and ideas by a true leader in thefield, for the libraries of institutions and individuals." (CurrentScience, 1 January 2011) "At the end I may say that this is must read book for igneouspetrologists and students." (Journal of the Geological Society ofIndia, 1 March 2011) "One cannot help being impressed by the breadth of materialpresented in this book ... in concluding this review I have toadmit to being impressed by the book even though my own work comesin for a fair amount of bashing in it. I was struck by theparallels between the plume controversy and the granitecontroversy, which in various ways dominated igneous petrology inthe first half of the twentieth century." (Mantleplumes, 2011) "This text is well written and easy to digest for the educatedreader. Bullet points make it easy to skim read and pick thesections that interest you. It probably best suits advancedundergraduates and postgraduate students and would make a good textfor courses in petrology, geophysics, or basin analysis." (TheObservatory, 1 April 2011) "This new textbook is ideal for agraduate-level seminar on the ongoing controversy over plumes." (Andrew Alden - Andrew's Geology Blog, 18 November 2010) "This text is well written and easy to digest for the educatedreader... it probably best suits advanced undergraduates andpostgraduate students and would make a good text for courses inpetrology, geophysics or basin analysis." (The Observatory -Newsletter of the Royal Astronomical Society, 29 November 2010)

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