Definition of asthenosphere in English:

asthenosphere

Syllabification: as·then·o·sphere
Pronunciation: /asˈTHenəˌsfi(ə)r
 
/

noun

Geology
  • The upper layer of the earth’s mantle, below the lithosphere, in which there is relatively low resistance to plastic flow and convection is thought to occur.
    More example sentences
    • Because the downgoing slab of lithosphere is heavier than the plastic asthenosphere below, it tends to sink passively; and the older the lithosphere, the steeper the dip.
    • The models consist of a two-layered brittle-ductile system representing the overriding continental lithosphere, overlying a low-viscosity layer simulating the asthenosphere to provide isostatic support.
    • Scientists believe that below the lithosphere is a relatively narrow, mobile zone in the mantle called the asthenosphere.

Derivatives

asthenospheric

Pronunciation: /asˌTHenəˈsfi(ə)rik, -ˈsferik/
adjective
More example sentences
  • They are interpreted to have been derived from subduction modified lithospheric and asthenospheric mantle sources.
  • We attribute the rapid return to subsidence in the basin to the confinement of abnormally hot asthenospheric mantle in the zone of continental break-up to the NW as sea-floor spreading commenced.
  • Given the lack of evidence for significant magmatism in the area, the likely heat sources are either radiogenic, or elevated heat flux from asthenospheric mantle emplaced at a relatively shallow level beneath the orogen.

Origin

early 20th century: from Greek asthenēs 'weak' + sphere.

More definitions of asthenosphere

Definition of asthenosphere in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove ads and access premium resources

Word of the day astrogation
Pronunciation: ˌastrəˈgāSHən
noun
(in science fiction) navigation in outer space