Igneous Rock Compositions and Plate Tectonics
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This page first made public: Oct 20, 2006
Department of Geological Sciences, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC
Kent Ratajeski, email@example.com
Department of Earth Sciences, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT
Published July 28, 2005.
In this exercise, students use whole-rock major- and trace-element compositions of igneous rocks from a variety of tectonic settings and locations to explore the importance of plate setting in determining magma compositions. Students are split into groups and assigned different tectonic settings to examine and compare with other groups. Datasets are obtained from the GEOROC database, imported into Excel spreadsheets, and graphed to learn how igneous rock compositions are a function of plate tectonic setting.