Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Orphan Knoll Dive 3 : 1978 Dredge Location / NE Mound Field

Around forty years ago, mounds on the NE corner of Orphan Knoll were discovered. The theories as to what the mounds were comprised of are various (authigenic carbonate, hydro-thermal activity, up-turned blocks, etc.) but unconfirmed. Dive 3 on Orphan Knoll will hopefully help clear-up the mystery of the mound composition.

The mound field on the NE corner of The Knoll were taken in 1979 and 1980. The data loosely visualizes the surface of The Knoll with a visible swath of ~50 Km. The low resolution black and white imagery, historic depth measurements and 12 KHz and 3.5 KHz seismic profiles are all the data that has been used to identify these mounds. There are roughly 250 mounds, whereby the geological origin remains unknown..........until now.

A hard Scleractinian coral, Desmophyllum dianthus, was found in 1978 by the Geological Society of Canada (GSC), lead by Dr. C. Keen. The fossilized and alive coral suggests that these mounds could be adequate substrate for deep-sea coral growth.

Determining the marine biology of these mounds and the geological composition of these mounds will hopefully end the debate on the origin of these mysterious mounds.

The dive plan attempts to traverse 3 mounds where the 1978 dredge locations were taken.

No comments:

Post a Comment