Characterizing Fluids at Depth
Researchers from the Hebrew University’s Institute of Earth Sciences and the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich have conducted experiments to characterize hot fluid activity happening at depths of 120 to 180 kilometers. Their studies have primarily focused on downward plunging plates in subduction zones, examining how much water is stored in the plates, how much dissolved material they contain, and when these fluids are eventually released from the plate.
In order to characterize the fluids participating in every stage of the downward water cycle, the Hebrew University and Swiss researchers developed a novel experimental and analytical laboratory technique by which the composition of a fluid phase can be directly analyzed following high pressure and temperature experiments. Their work focused on determining how much water is stored in the down-going earth plate, how much dissolved matter it contains, and when these fluids are released from the plate and transferred to the mantle.
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