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Authors: Kahl, M.* 
Chakraborty, S.* 
Costa, F.* 
Pompilio, M.* 
Title: Dynamic plumbing system beneath volcanoes revealed by kinetic modeling, and the connection to monitoring data: An example from Mt. Etna
Issue Date: 1-Aug-2011
Series/Report no.: 1-2/308(2011)
DOI: 10.1016/j.epsl.2011.05.008
Keywords: Etna
plumbing system
Subject Classification04. Solid Earth::04.04. Geology::04.04.05. Mineralogy and petrology 
04. Solid Earth::04.08. Volcanology::04.08.03. Magmas 
04. Solid Earth::04.08. Volcanology::04.08.05. Volcanic rocks 
Abstract: Our ability to monitor volcanoes (using seismic signals, ground deformation, gas fluxes, or other ground and satellite based observations) as well as our understanding of melt reservoirs that feed eruptions have evolved tremendously in recent years. The complex plumbing systems that are thought to feed eruptions are, however, difficult to relate to the monitoring signals. Here we show that the record preserved in compositional zoning of erupted minerals may be used to reconstruct sections of the plumbing system. Kinetic modeling of such zoning can yield information on the residence time of magma in different segments of the plumbing systems. This allows a more nuanced evaluation of the link between observed monitoring signals or eruption styles and the magmatic processes and movement of batches of melts at depth. The approach is illustrated through a study of the compositional zoning recorded in olivine crystals from the 1991–1993 SE-flank eruption products of Mt. Etna (Sicily). The zoning patterns in crystals reveal that the plumbing system of the volcano consisted of at least three different magmatic environments between which magma was transported and mixed in the year or two preceding the start of eruption. Quantification of this history indicates that two main pathways of melt migration and three timescales dominated the dynamics of the system. Combination of this information with the timing of observation of various monitoring signals allows a reconstruction of the dynamic evolution of this section of the plumbing system during the early stages of the 1991–1993 eruption. It is seen, for example, how the migration of melt through the same sections of the plumbing system can cause pre-eruptive triggering, enhance Strombolian activity, and through the ensuing eruption cleanse and flush the plumbing system. Different kinds of mixing occur simultaneously at different sections of the plumbing system on different timescales (a few days up to two years).
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