The origin of Volatiles in the Earth's Mantle. / Hier-Majumder, Saswata; Hirschmann, Marc.

In: Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 18.08.2017.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Published

Documents

Abstract

The Earth's deep interior contains significant reservoirs of volatiles such as H, C, and N. Due to the incompatible nature of these volatile species, it has been difficult to reconcile their storage in the residual mantle immediately following crystallization of the terrestrial magma ocean (MO). As the magma ocean freezes, it is commonly assumed that very small amounts of melt are retained in the residual mantle, limiting the trapped volatile concentration in the primordial mantle. In this article, we show that inefficient melt drainage out of the freezing front can retain large amounts of volatiles hosted in the trapped melt in the residual mantle while creating a thick early atmosphere. Using a two-phase flow model, we demonstrate that compaction within the moving freezing front is inefficient over time scales characteristic of magma ocean solidification. We employ a scaling relation between the trapped melt fraction, the rate of compaction, and the rate of freezing in our magma ocean evolution model. For cosmochemically plausible fractions of volatiles delivered during the later stages of accretion, our calculations suggest that up to 77% of total H2O and 12% of CO2 could have been trapped in the mantle during magma ocean crystallization. The assumption of a constant trapped melt fraction underestimates the mass of volatiles in the residual mantle by more than an order of magnitude.
Original languageEnglish
JournalGeochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems
DOIs
StatePublished - 18 Aug 2017
This open access research output is licenced under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

ID: 27080486