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Latest Integrated Ocean Drilling Program Stories

Iberian Coast Ocean Drilling Expedition Reports Early Findings
2012-01-23 12:10:57

Underwater river of mud and sand tells tale of climate change and ocean gateways, new oil and gas exploration possibilities Mediterranean bottom currents and the sediment deposits they leave behind offer new insights into global climate change, the opening and closing of ocean circulation gateways and locations where hydrocarbon deposits may lie buried under the sea. A team of 35 scientists from 14 countries recently returned from an expedition off the southwest coast of Iberia and the...

Image 1 - Microbes Could Help Scientists Unlock Earth's Deep Secrets
2012-01-09 11:05:22

To find answers, oceanographers install observatories beneath remote seafloor Of all the habitable parts of our planet, one ecosystem still remains largely unexplored and unknown to science: the igneous ocean crust. This rocky realm of hard volcanic lava exists beneath ocean sediments that lie at the bottom of much of the world's oceans. While scientists have estimated that microbes living in deep ocean sediments may represent as much as one-third of Earth's total biomass, the...

2011-09-02 12:00:14

Unleash your inner explorer and accompany USC geobiologist Katrina Edwards as she embarks on an ocean adventure this month – by reading her blog. The blog´s first post can be found online at the Scientific American website at http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/expeditions/2011/08/30/introducing-expedition-336-at-north-pond/. Edwards and her colleague Wolfgang Bach of Bremen University will co-lead a team of more than 100 scientists and support crew for the Center for Dark...

2011-06-30 17:43:43

Heavy Metal Meets Hard Rock: Battling through the Ocean Crust's Hardest Rocks to Capture the Boundary Between Magma and Water Scientists and drillers recovered a remarkable suite of heat-tempered basalts that provide a detailed picture of the rarely seen boundary between magma and seawater. These samples were collected during a return to ODP Hole 1256D, one of the deepest "hard rock" penetration sites of scientific ocean drilling. ODP Hole 1256D has been stabilized, cleared to its full depth,...

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2011-06-30 09:15:29

Samples of rock, sediment from beneath the sea-floor help explain quakes like Japan's New samples of rock and sediment from the depths of the eastern Pacific Ocean may help explain the cause of large, destructive earthquakes similar to the Tohoku Earthquake that struck Japan in mid-March. Nearly 1,500 meters (almost one mile) of sediment cores collected from the ocean floor off the coast of Costa Rica reveal detailed records of some two million years of tectonic activity along a seismic plate...

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2011-05-30 08:29:58

Thirty-eight million years ago, tropical jungles thrived in what are now the cornfields of the American Midwest and furry marsupials wandered temperate forests in what is now the frozen Antarctic. The temperature differences of that era, known as the late Eocene, between the equator and Antarctica were half what they are today. A debate has been ongoing in the scientific community about what changes in our global climate system led to such a major shift from the more tropical, greenhouse...

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2011-04-06 07:25:00

The Chicxulub crater in Mexico, the site of the asteroid strike that brought the dinosaurs to extinction 65 million years ago, is among the highlights of ocean drilling projects proposed for the next decade, reports BBC News. The Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP) plans to study the crater by drilling about a mile into the sea bed. IODP is also planning expeditions to study earthquakes, ancient climates and a long-term aim to penetrate the Earth's mantle for the first time. IODP...

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2011-02-27 07:33:33

Scientists are unraveling the environmental changes that took place around the Arctic during an exceptional episode of ancient global warming. Newly published results from a high-resolution study of sediments collected on Spitsbergen represent a significant contribution to this endeavor. The study was led by Dr Ian Harding and Prof John Marshall of the University of Southampton's School of Ocean and Earth Science (SOES), based at the National Oceanography Centre, Southampton. Around 56...

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2011-02-16 11:20:00

Nearly half a mile of rock retrieved from beneath the seafloor is yielding new clues about how underwater volcanoes are created and whether the hotspots that led to their formation have moved over time. Geoscientists have just completed an expedition to a string of underwater volcanoes, or seamounts, in the Pacific Ocean known as the Louisville Seamount Trail. There they collected samples of sediments, basalt lava flows and other volcanic eruption materials to piece together the history of...

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2010-12-13 11:45:00

Deep sediment cores retrieved from the Bering Sea floor indicate that the region was ice-free all year and biological productivity was high during the last major warm period in Earth's climate history. Christina Ravelo, professor of ocean sciences at the University of California, Santa Cruz, will present the new findings in a talk on December 13 at the fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union (AGU) in San Francisco. Ravelo and co-chief scientist Kozo Takahashi of Kyushu University,...