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Filters: Tags: Deep Sea Research Part A, Oceanographic Research Papers (X)

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Analyses of samples from a 14-year series of sediment-trap deployments in the deep Sargasso Sea reveal a significant trend in the ratio of the sinking fluxes of biogenic calcium carbonate and silica. Although there are pronounced seasonal cycles for both flux components, the overall opal/CaCO3 ratio changed by 50% from 1978 to 1991 (largely due to a decrease of opal flux), while total flux had no significant trend. These results suggest that plankton communities respond rapidly to subtle climate change, such as is evident in regional variations of wind speed, precipitation, wintertime ventilation and midwater temperatures. If the trends we observe in the makeup of sinking particulate matter occur on a large scale,...
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The combination of high-resolution siliceous biostratigraphy and radiocarbon dating provides a mechanism for detailed assessment of the depositional history in late Pleistocene sediments from the Bering Sea where average accumulation rates are uncharacteristically high compared to rates calculated for most other ocean basins. Vital to the development of this stratigraphy was the recognition that the abundance pattern of the radiolarian species Cycladophora davisiana in Bering Sea cores is quite similar to this species' previously correlated abundance curve in a late Pleistocene/Holocene record from the northwest Pacific. Comparison of this high-resolution stratigraphy with other recently developed floral and lithologic...
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A deep-towed photographic system with completely self-contained recording instrumentation and power can obtain color-video and still-photographic transects along rough terrane without need for a long electrically conducting cable. Both the video- and still-camera systems utilize relatively inexpensive and proven off-the-shelf hardware adapted for deep-water environments. The small instrument frame makes the towed sled an ideal photographic tool for use on ship or small-boat operations. The system includes a temperature probe and altimeter that relay data acoustically from the sled to the surface ship. This relay enables the operator to monitor simultaneously water temperature and the precise height off the bottom....
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Spectral analysis of 46 days of record from a current meter deployed above the summit of Cross Seamount (approximately 300 km west of the Hawaiian Islands) indicates that the strongest current fluctuations were driven by the semidiurnal tide. The tides accounted for 28% of the variance in the current spectrum, were mainly baroclinic in character, and were propagated towards the west-northwest. The amplitude of the S2 current flowing parallel to the major axis of the current ellipse ranged between 4 and 9 cm-1 s. The S2 current was 1.5 times larger than the M2 current. This ratio is 4 times larger than is expected for this region of the Pacific and is not a general characteristics of flows over seamounts. Instantaneous...
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Unusually high abundances of sponges and gorgonian corals, covering as much as 25% of the bottom, occur at depths greater than 3.5 km on the Blake Spur, a rocky cliff-dominated feature on the western Atlantic continental margin. This is the first report of such high abundances of megafauna from a non-hydrothermal or otherwise chemosynthetically enriched site in abyssal depths. Animal densities at other steep rocky sites at similar depths are usually lower by more than an order of magnitude. The deep slope of the Blake Spur is exposed to the vigorous Western Boundary Undercurrent, with local flow speeds that may exceed 100 cm s-1. Currents can control this anomalous animal abundance by removing sediments and by enhancing...
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Scleractinian corals create three-dimensional reefs that provide sheltered refuges, facilitate sediment accumulation, and enhance colonization of encrusting fauna. While heterogeneous coral habitats can harbor high levels of biodiversity, their effect on the community composition within nearby sediments remains unclear, particularly in the deep sea. Sediment macrofauna from deep-sea coral habitats (Lophelia pertusa) and non-coral, background sediments were examined at three sites in the northern Gulf of Mexico (VK826, VK906, MC751, 350–500 m depth) to determine whether macrofaunal abundance, diversity, and community composition near corals differed from background soft-sediments. Macrofaunal densities ranged from...
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General paradigms of species extinction risk are urgently needed as global habitat loss and rapid climate change threaten Earth with what could be its sixth mass extinction. Using the stony coral Lophelia pertusa as a model organism with the potential for wide larval dispersal, we investigated how the global ocean conveyor drove an unprecedented post-glacial range expansion in Earth׳s largest biome, the deep sea. We compiled a unique ocean-scale dataset of published radiocarbon and uranium-series dates of fossil corals, the sedimentary protactinium–thorium record of Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (AMOC) strength, authigenic neodymium and lead isotopic ratios of circulation pathways, and coral biogeography,...
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The stable isotopes of carbon and sulfur in a major marine sedimentary phosphate deposit from the northwestern United States (the Phosphoria Formation of Permian age) characterize the chemical properties of the depositional environment. The δ34S and δ13C analyses suggest deposition under conditions of variable redox from a solution the acidity of which was controlled by reaction with carbonate rocks and exchange with seawater. The δ18O concentration of apetite indicates phosphatization in a shallow sea, during three glacial and intervening interglacial stages. These data tend to corroborate the interpretation of field studies by others, that the apatite formed on a continental shelf in an area of intense oceanic...
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Alvin dives and camera tows within the "meander area" of the Monterey and Ascension Fan Valleys have located nine chemosynthetic communities over depths ranging from 3000 to 3600 m over a distance of 55 km. Most of the observed communities consist largely of Calyptogena phaseoliformis, but Solemya (species unknown) and a pogonophoran (genus Polybrachia), have also been identified. The ??13C values (-35.0 to -33.6 per mil) and the presence of APS reductase and ATP sulfurylase in the C. phaseoliformis tissue is consistent with sulfur chemoautotrophy. Two reduced organic matter sources for the H2S are proposed: (1) older beds exposed by the deep erosion (up to 400 m) of the fan valleys and (2) concentrations of anaerobically...
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DOMES Site A, in the equatorial North Pacific, was surveyed in detail in an attempt to relate the distribution of nodules to sedimentation. The sea floor is characterized by a broad east-west-trending valley defined by strongly dissected highlands to the north and south. Sediment recovered from the highlands and from the north margin of the valley is late Quaternary. The associated nodules are small, often polynucleated, have smooth surface textures, and the dominant mineral is ??-MnO2. By contrast, cores along the south margin of the valley contain early Tertiary sediment; the nodules usually are large, discoidal in shape, all have a granular surface texture, and the dominant mineral is todorokite. Cores from the...
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Near-bottom currents were measured for several days at three sites on the summits of Fieberling Guyot (32??26???N, 127??46???W) and Horizon Guyot (19??15???N, 160??00???W). Three moorings comprised of two current meters were deployed on each summit; two moorings were deployed on opposite sides of the rim of the summit and one mooring was deployed near the center of the summit. The observed currents were strong, with maximum speeds of 48 and 24 cm s-1 on Fieberling and Horizon, respectively. The currents at specific frequencies were enhanced relative to those in the surrounding ocean. Diurnal currents were the dominant component of the current field on Fieberling Guyot. They accounted for 39-68% of the energy and...
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Radiolarians from the surface sediments of the Navarin Basin geologic province in the western part of the Bering Sea are more diverse and abundant than previous reports indicate. The shelf is dominated by two spongy radiolarian species groups (Stylochlamydium venustum and Spongotrochus glacialis groups), while the slope has more diversity. The distributions can in part be explained by present oceanographic conditions. Studies of five cores along the slope show that there is a faunal change within the top 5 m of sediment. The spongy radiolarians are more abundant in recent sediments but gradually decrease downcore as Cycladophora davisiana becomes the dominant species, which probably reflects an environmental change....
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Mass movement and erosion have been identified on the pelagic sediment cap of Horizon Guyot, a seamount in the Mid-Pacific Mountains. Trends in the size, shape and preservation of bedforms and sediment textural trends on the pelagic cap indicate that bottom-current-generated sediment transport direction is upslope. Slumping of the sediment cap occurred on and that the net bedload transport direction is upslope. Slumping of the sediment cap occurred on the northwest side of the guyot on a 1.6?? to 2.0?? slope in the zone of enhanced bottom-current activity. Submersible investigations of these slump blocks show them to be discrete and to have a relief of 6-15 m, with nodular chert beds cropping out along the headwall...


    map background search result map search result map Biodiversity and community composition of sediment macrofauna associated with deep-sea <i>Lophelia pertusa</i> habitats in the Gulf of Mexico Biodiversity and community composition of sediment macrofauna associated with deep-sea <i>Lophelia pertusa</i> habitats in the Gulf of Mexico