A simplified three-dimensional model for the island of Hawai'i, based on 3300 gravity measurements, provides new insights on magma pathways within the basaltic volcanoes. Gravity anomalies define dense cumulates and intrusions beneath the summits and known rift zones of every volcano. Linear gravity anomalies project southeast from Kohala and Mauna Kea summits and south from Huala??lai and Mauna Loa; these presumably express dense cores of previously unrecognized rift zones lacking surface expression. The gravity-modeled dense cores probably define tholeiitic shield-stage structures of the older volcanoes that are now veneered by late alkalic lavas. The three-dimensional gravity method is valuable for characterizing the magmatic systems of basaltic oceanic volcanoes and for defining structures related to landslide and seismic hazards.
Additional publication details
Deep magmatic structures of Hawaiian volcanoes, imaged by three-dimensional gravity models