A systematic regional trend in helium isotopes across the northernbasin and range province, Western North America

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An extensive study of helium isotopes in fluids collectedfrom surface springs, fumaroles and wells across the northern Basin andRange Province reveals a systematic trend of decreasing 3He/4He ratiosfrom west to east. The western margin of the Basin and Range ischaracterized by mantle-like ratios (6-8 Ra) associated with active orrecently active crustal magma systems (e.g., Coso, Long Valley,Steamboat, and the Cascade volcanic complex). Moving towards the east,the ratios decline systematically to a background value of ~;0.1 Ra. Theregional trend is consistent with extensive mantle melting concentratedalong the western margin and is coincident with an east-to-west increasein the magnitude of northwest strain. ... continued below

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Kennedy, B. Mack & van Soest, Matthijs C. May 1, 2006.

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An extensive study of helium isotopes in fluids collectedfrom surface springs, fumaroles and wells across the northern Basin andRange Province reveals a systematic trend of decreasing 3He/4He ratiosfrom west to east. The western margin of the Basin and Range ischaracterized by mantle-like ratios (6-8 Ra) associated with active orrecently active crustal magma systems (e.g., Coso, Long Valley,Steamboat, and the Cascade volcanic complex). Moving towards the east,the ratios decline systematically to a background value of ~;0.1 Ra. Theregional trend is consistent with extensive mantle melting concentratedalong the western margin and is coincident with an east-to-west increasein the magnitude of northwest strain. The increase in shear strainenhances crustal permeability resulting in high vertical fluid flow ratesthat preserve the high helium isotope ratios at the surface. Superimposedon the regional trend are "helium spikes," local anomalies in the heliumisotope composition. These "spikes" reflect either local zones of mantlemelting or locally enhanced crustal permeability. In the case of theDixie Valley hydrothermal system, it appears to be a combination ofboth.

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  • Annual Meeting of the Geothermal ResourcesCouncil, San Diego, California, 10-13 September2006

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  • Report No.: LBNL--61338
  • Grant Number: DE-AC02-05CH11231
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 919013
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc891102

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  • May 1, 2006

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  • Sept. 22, 2016, 2:13 a.m.

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  • Sept. 30, 2016, 2:37 p.m.

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Kennedy, B. Mack & van Soest, Matthijs C. A systematic regional trend in helium isotopes across the northernbasin and range province, Western North America, article, May 1, 2006; Berkeley, California. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc891102/: accessed August 21, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.