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  1. Aqueous fluids are critical agents in the geochemical evolution of Earth’s interior. Fluid circulation and fluid–rock reactions in the Earth take place at temperatures ranging from ambient to magmatic, at pressures from ambient to extreme, and involve fluids that range from nearly pure H2O through to complex, multicomponent solutions. Consequently, the physical and chemical properties of hydrothermal fluids vary widely as functions of geologic setting; this variation strongly impacts fluid-driven processes. This issue will focus on the nature of geologic fluids at hydrothermal conditions and how such fluids affect geologic processes in some major settings.
  2. Fluids are essential to the physical and chemical processes in subduction zones. Two types of subduction-zone fluids can be distinguished. First, shallow fluids, which are relatively dilute and water rich and that have properties that vary between subduction zones depending on the local thermal regime. Second, deep fluids, which possess higher proportions of dissolved silicate, salts and non-polar gases relative to water content, and have properties that are broadly similar in most subduction systems, regardless of the local thermal structure. We review key physical and chemical properties of fluids in two key subduction-zone contexts—along the slab top and beneath the volcanic front—to illustrate the distinct properties of shallow and deep subduction-zone fluids.
  3. Understanding the viscosity of mantle-derived magmas is needed to model their migration mechanisms and ascent rate from the source rock to the surface. High pressure–temperature experimental data are now available on the viscosity of synthetic melts, pure carbonatitic to carbonate–silicate compositions, anhydrous basalts, dacites and rhyolites. However, the viscosity of volatile-bearing melilititic melts, among the most plausible carriers of deep carbon, has not been investigated. In this study, we experimentally determined the viscosity of synthetic liquids with ~31 and ~39 wt% SiO2, 1.60 and 1.42 wt% CO2 and 5.7 and 1 wt% H2O, respectively, at pressures from 1 to 4.7 GPa and temperatures between 1265 and 1755 °C, using the falling-sphere technique combined with in situ X-ray radiography. Our results show viscosities between 0.1044 and 2.1221 Pa·s, with a clear dependence on temperature and SiO2 content. The atomic structure of both melt compositions was also determined at high pressure and temperature, using in situ multi-angle energy-dispersive X-ray diffraction supported by ex situ microFTIR and microRaman spectroscopic measurements. Our results yield evidence that the T–T and T–O (T = Si,Al) interatomic distances of ultrabasic melts are higher than those for basaltic melts known from similar recent studies. Based on our experimentalmore »data, melilititic melts are expected to migrate at a rate ~from 2 to 57 km·yr−1 in the present-day or the Archaean mantle, respectively.« less