Island arcs

  • Marjorie Wilson


The oceanic island arcs represent the sites of subduction of one oceanic lithospheric plate beneath another (Fig. 6.1). Their characteristic features are linear or arcuate chains of islands forming the volcanic front, often flanked by marginal basins formed by seafloor spreading type processes behind the arc (Ch. 8). Sediments forming the upper layer of the oceanic crust are frequently scraped off the subducting plate as it descends, and form an accretionary wedge in the forearc region.


Partial Melting Oceanic Crust Mantle Wedge Primary Magma Overlie Mantle Wedge 
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Further reading

  1. Best, M.G. 1982. Igneous and metamorphic petrology. New York: W.H. Freeman; see Chapter 3.Google Scholar
  2. Gill, J.B. 1981. Orogenic andesites and plate tectonics. Berlin: Springer-Verlag.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Hughes, C.J. 1982. Igneous petrology. Amsterdam: Elsevier; see Chapter 11.Google Scholar
  4. Thorpe, R.S. (ed.) 1982. Andesites. Chichester: Wiley.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marjorie Wilson
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Earth SciencesUniversity of LeedsLeedsUK

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