EARTH Magazine: The Question of Mantle Plumes

EARTH Magazine

From EARTH Magazine, 12/22/2015  --  Do mantle plumes exist? EARTH Magazine explores one of the most hotly debated topics within the geoscience community. From the origin of plate tectonic theory to the results of the most recent experiments using techniques like isotope geochemistry and seismic tomography,  the results of mantle studies are often contradictory, giving rise to the longstanding debate. 

It is not just the lack of clarity in the data that opponents of the mantle plume hypothesis find frustrating, but the fact that plumes are taught, as early as  grade school, as a settled scientific fact about how the planet's mantle functions. Explore how today's faculty broach the subject, read about new ways these data are being interpreted and what improved supercomputing technology can bring to this debate in the January issue of EARTH Magazine:

EARTH Magazine starts off 2016 with some of the most exciting stories from around the geoscience community, like in-depth coverage of the excavation of "Snowmastodon" fossil site in Colorado, and research news like the role meteorites played in the formation of Earth's earliest continents and how oceanographers identified the source of a mysterious beach explosion in New England. EARTH continues to bring you interviews with prominent geoscientists in its "Down to EARTH" series as well as fun features such as the "Where on EARTH?" photo contest and a monthly crossword puzzle or word jumble. For more information and the science behind the headlines go to


Keep up to date with the latest happenings in Earth, energy and environment news with EARTH Magazine online at: Published by the American Geosciences Institute, EARTH is your source for the science behind the headlines.