Off-rift volcanism in rift zones determined by crustal unloading (23.03.2014)
Francesco Maccaferri, Eleonora Rivalta, Derek Keir, Valerio Acocella
Volcanoes often occur in rift valleys, within the rift itself or on the rift flanks as e.g. in East Africa. A team of scientists from the GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences, University of Southampton and University Roma Tre (Italy) have shown that the pattern of stresses in the crust changes when the crust thins due to stretching and becomes gravitationally unloaded. As a consequence of this stress pattern, the path of the magma pockets ascending from the ponding zone is deviated diagonally to the sides of the rift.