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This image shows how circulation in the asthenosphere produces upwellings of magma at spreading centers which become oceanic lithosphere. At plate margins, the oceanic lithosphere is subducted beneath continental lithosphere until it reaches sufficient depth for melting to occur. Rising magma from the melting asthenosphere produces volcanism and igneous rocks in the continental lithosphere adjacent to the plate margin. Stresses and heating produced by subduction at the plate margin cause metamorphism of existing rocks in that region. At or near the surface, weathering, transport, and deposition produce sedimentary rocks which blanket the lithosphere.
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