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Spatial variations in $$^{3}$$He/$$^{4}$$He ratios along a high strain rate zone, central Japan

Umeda, Koji; Kusano, Tomohiro; Ninomiya, Atsushi*; Asamori, Koichi; Nakajima, Junichi*

A linear zone with high strain rates along the Japan Sea coast, the Niigata-Kobe Tectonic Zone (NKTZ), is considered to be associated with rheological heterogeneities in the lower crust and/or upper mantle. Helium isotope variations along the NKTZ reveal a close association with the geophysical evidence for rheological heterogeneities in the crust and mantle. In the northern NKTZ where two large inland earthquakes occurred recently, there appear to be many samples with $$^{3}$$He/$$^{4}$$He ratios significantly higher than those observed in the fore-arc side of northeast Japan. A plausible source of mantle helium could be attributed to upward mobilization of aqueous fluids generated by dehydration of the subducting Pacific Plate slab.

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