Subsidence, Tilting, Sedimentation, and Oligocene-middle Miocene paleo-depth of Ross Sea
This project will produce a new compilation of Ross Sea seismic stratigraphy, including new interpretations, that can be used to provide boundary conditions on the tectonic and glacial evolution of West Antarctica and the Ross Sea. The principal goals include compilation of, and interpretation of, all available existing seismic reflection data for the Western Ross Sea, coupled with geophysical modeling to produce paleo-bathymetric reconstructions for the entire 800 km-wide Ross Sea. Specific tasks will include: extending existing work on mapping travel time to reflectors, identifying relations in the seismic data that indicate subsidence through sea level, constructing velocity models for converting travel time to thickness, and using the velocity models to estimate density and porosity of sediments for backstripping analysis. Modeling/backstripping efforts will be used to constrain past bathymetry. Digital interpretations and stratigraphic grids will be provided as supplements to publications. In that way the results of this study can be used in thermal subsidence modeling and restoration of eroded rock to other parts of Ross Embayment and Marie Byrd Land by others. Digital products may be provided in advance of publication to modelers in a way that will not hurt publication chances.
The results of this work will be important for paleo-geographic reconstructions of Antarctica and will therefore be of use to a broad range of researchers, particularly those working in the Ross Sea region. The digital products can be used to test models for the past fluctuations of West Antarctic ice sheets, and in planning for future sediment drilling projects. Two undergraduates to be chosen from applicants will be involved in summer internships held at the University of Rhode Island. Outreach will also include a new website and one or more Wikipedia entries related to Ross Sea sub-sea floor characteristics. The project includes an international collaboration with Dr. Chiara Sauli and others at Instituto Nazionale di Oceanografia e di Geofisica Sperimentale (OGS) in Italy.
AMD - DIF Record(s)
Data Management Plan
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Platforms and Instruments
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