A tidal-influenced hydrothermal system temporarily cooled by a tropical storm

Chen, Xue-Gang, Yu, Ming-Zhen, Loh, Pei Sun, Garbe-Schönberg, Dieter, Qiu, Zhongyan, Schmidt, Mark, Zhang, Hai-Yan, Chen, Chen-Tung Arthur, Zheng, Hao and Ye, Ying (2020) A tidal-influenced hydrothermal system temporarily cooled by a tropical storm Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research, 393 (Article number 106792). DOI 10.1016/j.jvolgeores.2020.106792.

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Supplementary data:



• The vent fluids discharged from the Lutao hydrothermal field experienced low-degree subcritical phase separation.
• The temperature and chemical compositions of the vent fluids were modulated by tides.
• The time delay between tides and the response of hydrothermal system was about 3 h.
• The typhoon “Fung-wong” cooled the reaction zone and decreased the degree of phase separation.
• The hydrothermal system began to recover after the typhoon passed by.


The Lutao hydrothermal field is an intertidal arc-volcanic system located offshore southeast Taiwan, hosting a Zhudanqu (ZDQ) vent and a Huwaichi (HWC) spring with strongly contrasting fluid chemistry. Low Mg, moderately enriched Cl, and H+ with respect to seawater indicate that the ZDQ endmember was derived from the brine phase that was formed during low-degree subcritical phase separation. In contrast, the endmember for the HWC vent fluids is related to the vapor phase. Temperature and pressure of the phase separation were estimated as ~150 °C and ~7 bar, respectively. The water/rock ratio was roughly calculated as about 2.

The Lutao hydrothermal system was slightly affected by semi-diurnal tides, by some combination of tidal loading and tidal currents. The time delay between tides and the response of the hydrothermal system was about 3 h. While freshwater was almost absent in the HWC vent fluids at normal conditions, the typhoon “Fung-wong” on Sep 21st, 2014, led to intrusions of freshwater into the vent fluids with a percentage of ~16%. Both the ZDQ and the HWC endmember compositions showed some changes after the typhoon event, suggesting a cooling of the reaction zone. After the typhoon passed by, the hydrothermal system began to recover, evidenced by increasing percentages of the HWC endmember and decreasing freshwater contributions. The flux of the HWC endmember was estimated as 460–560 L h−1 based on these observations. This study, for the first time, reports a shallow-depth tidal-influenced hydrothermal system that was temporarily cooled by a tropical storm.

Document Type: Article
Keywords: Hydrothermal vent, Tide, Typhoon Phase separation, Fluid chemistry
Research affiliation: OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB2 Marine Biogeochemistry > FB2-MG Marine Geosystems
Kiel University
Refereed: Yes
DOI etc.: 10.1016/j.jvolgeores.2020.106792
ISSN: 0377-0273
Projects: COMRA
Date Deposited: 28 Jan 2020 09:08
Last Modified: 28 Jan 2020 09:08
URI: http://eprints.uni-kiel.de/id/eprint/48867

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