The asthenosphere () is the mechanically weak and ductile region of the upper mantle of Earth. It lies below the lithosphere, at a depth between ~ below the surface, and extends as deep as . However, the lower boundary of the asthenosphere is not well defined.
The asthenosphere is almost solid, but a slight amount of melting (less than 0.1% of the rock) contributes to its mechanical weakness. More extensive decompression melting of the asthenosphere takes place where it wells upwards, and this is the most important source of magma on Earth. It is the source of mid-ocean ridge basalt (MORB) and of some magmas that erupted above subduction zones or in regions of continental rifting.
The asthenosphere is a part of the upper mantle just below the lithosphere that is involved in plate tectonic movement and isostatic adjustments. It is composed of peridotite, a rock containing mostly the minerals olivine and pyroxene. The lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary i