Segment tip geometry of sheet intrusions, II: Field observations of tip geometries and a model for evolving emplacement mechanisms

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Tara Stephens
https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1435-5198
Richard Walker
https://orcid.org/0000-0002-8541-1639
David Healy
https://orcid.org/0000-0003-2685-1498
Alodie Bubeck
https://orcid.org/0000-0002-6506-6831

Abstract

Igneous sheet intrusions are segmented across several orders of magnitude, with segment tip geometry commonly considered indicative of the propagation mechanism (brittle or non-brittle). Proposed propagation mechanisms are inferred to represent host rock mechanical properties during initial magma emplacement; typically, these models do not account for segment sets that show a range of tip geometries within the same lithology. We present a detailed structural characterization of basaltic sill segments and their associated host rock deformation from the Little Minch Sill Complex, Isle of Skye, UK, and a broader comparison with segment geometries in three additional intrusive suites (Utah, USA; and Mull and Orkney, UK).  Each separate host lithology shows multiple tip geometries and styles of host rock deformation, from elastic-brittle fracture, to viscous indentation and fluidisation. We attribute this range of host rock deformations to evolving conditions that occur at the tips both during sheet growth and arrest.  

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How to Cite
Stephens, T., Walker, R., Healy, D. and Bubeck, A. (2021) “Segment tip geometry of sheet intrusions, II: Field observations of tip geometries and a model for evolving emplacement mechanisms ”, Volcanica, 4(2), pp. 203–225. doi: 10.30909/vol.04.02.203225.
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