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Authors: Acocella, V.* 
Neri, M.* 
Title: Dike propagation in volcanic edifices: Overview and possible developments
Issue Date: Jun-2009
Series/Report no.: /471 (2009)
DOI: 10.1016/j.tecto.2008.10.002
Keywords: dikes
tectonic setting
Subject Classification03. Hydrosphere::03.04. Chemical and biological::03.04.02. Carbon cycling 
04. Solid Earth::04.01. Earth Interior::04.01.99. General or miscellaneous 
04. Solid Earth::04.04. Geology::04.04.99. General or miscellaneous 
04. Solid Earth::04.04. Geology::04.04.09. Structural geology 
04. Solid Earth::04.07. Tectonophysics::04.07.99. General or miscellaneous 
04. Solid Earth::04.07. Tectonophysics::04.07.05. Stress 
04. Solid Earth::04.07. Tectonophysics::04.07.07. Tectonics 
04. Solid Earth::04.08. Volcanology::04.08.99. General or miscellaneous 
04. Solid Earth::04.08. Volcanology::04.08.03. Magmas 
04. Solid Earth::04.08. Volcanology::04.08.06. Volcano monitoring 
04. Solid Earth::04.08. Volcanology::04.08.08. Volcanic risk 
05. General::05.02. Data dissemination::05.02.99. General or miscellaneous 
05. General::05.02. Data dissemination::05.02.03. Volcanic eruptions 
05. General::05.08. Risk::05.08.99. General or miscellaneous 
Abstract: Eruptions are fed by dikes; therefore, better knowledge of dike propagation is necessary to improve our understanding of how magma is transferred and extruded at volcanoes. This study presents an overview of dike patterns and the factors controlling dike propagation within volcanic edifices. Largely based on published data, three main types of dikes (regional, circumferential and radial) are illustrated and discussed. Dike pattern data from 25 volcanic edifices in different settings are compared to derive semi-quantitative relationships between the topography (relief, shape, height, and presence of sector collapses) of the volcano, tectonic setting (presence of a regional stress field), and mean composition (SiO2 content). The overview demonstrates how dike propagation in a volcano is not a random process; rather, it depends from the following factors (listed in order of importance): the presence of relief, the shape of the edifice and regional tectonic control. We find that taller volcanoes develop longer radial dikes, whose (mainly lateral) propagation is independent of the composition of magma or the aspect ratio of the edifice. Future research, starting from these preliminary evaluations, should be devoted to identifying dike propagation paths and likely locations of vent formation at specific volcanoes, to better aid hazards assessment.
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