Seismic velocities in mantle minerals and the mineralogy of the upper mantle

T. S. Duffy, D. L. Anderson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

494 Scopus citations


Comparison of seismic velocities in mantle minerals, under mantle conditions, with seismic data is a first step toward constraining mantle chemistry. A new approach to elasticity estimation is used in this study to produce estimates of unknown quantities, primarily pressure and temperature derivatives of elastic moduli, from the structural and chemical trends evident in the large amount of elasticity data now available. Both compressional and shear seismic profiles are well-matched by a mineralogy dominated by clinopyroxene and garnet and with an olivine content of approximately 40% by volume. Between 670 and 1000km, perovskite alone provides a good fit to the seismic velocities. Combining seismic velocities with recent phase equilibria data for a hypothetical pure olivine mantle suggests that a mineralogy with a maximum of 35% olivine (shear profile) or 40-53% olivine (compressional profile) by volume can satisfy the constraint imposed by the 400km discontinuity. -from Authors

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1895-1912
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research
Issue numberB2
StatePublished - 1989
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geophysics
  • Forestry
  • Oceanography
  • Aquatic Science
  • Ecology
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Soil Science
  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Earth-Surface Processes
  • Atmospheric Science
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Palaeontology


Dive into the research topics of 'Seismic velocities in mantle minerals and the mineralogy of the upper mantle'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this