The mantle beneath volcanic arcs

A broad theme of my research is understanding the role of the deep lithosphere beneath subduction zones.  Often, the only way to access this part of the Earth is by looking at xenoliths – fragments of the mantle erupted in volcanoes.  Because xenoliths are brought to the surface rapidly, they preserve chemical signatures of their deep origin, allowing us to decipher processes at work in the lithospheric mantle.