Mantle Plume-Lithosphere Interactions Beneath the Emeishan Large Igneous Province

Anqi Zhang, Zhen Guo*, Juan Carlos Afonso, J. Gregory Shellnutt, Yingjie Yang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The formation of large igneous provinces (LIPs) has been widely believed to be linked to mantle plume activity. However, how the plume modifies the overlying lithosphere, particularly its compositional structure, remains uncertain. Here, we characterize the deep thermochemical structure beneath the Emeishan LIP (ELIP), which is a well-known Permian plume-related LIP in China, by taking a multi-observable probabilistic inversion. Our results find a clear correlation between the lithospheric composition with the ELIP's concentric zones. We infer that the fertile feature of the lithospheric mantle in the ELIP's inner zone was caused by the plume-derived fertile magmas which infiltrated into and chemically refertilized the ambient depleted lithosphere. This plume-modified lithospheric compositional structure is likely to be preserved after the plume event, while the present lithospheric thermal structure has been mainly influenced by the subsequent thermal-tectonic activity. Our results improve our understanding of the physicochemical interactions between the lithosphere and ancient plume.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere2023GL106973
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2024 Jan 28


  • Emeishan large igneous province
  • mantle plume-modified lithosphere
  • multi-observable probabilistic inversion
  • thermochemical structure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


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