Mantle Transition Zone Structure Beneath Southeastern China and its Implications for Stagnant Slab and Water Transportation in the Mantle
We determined depth variation of the 410- and 660-km discontinuities beneath southeastern China by common-converted-point stacking of -wave receiver functions of 121 permanent Chinese seismic stations. We then combined the results with seismic velocity variation to estimate temperature and water content variations in the mantle transition zone of the region. Previous tomographic studies have shown a stagnant slab in the mantle transition zone in eastern Asia that is connected to subduction of the western Pacific. Temperature variations obtained clearly outline the shape of the stagnant slab, with its western edge at 113.5E and the southern edge at 28.5N. The correlation between the location of the stagnant slab and surface tectonics suggests that the Cenozoic extension in eastern China is closely associated with the subduction of the western Pacific and its eastward migration. The water content of the stagnant slab is lower than in surrounding slabs, suggesting that the water has already been released from the subducting slab into the upper mantle.