Physical oceanography and water masses in the Cretaceous Western Interior Seaway.

Hay, William W., Eicher, D. L. and Diner, R. (1993) Physical oceanography and water masses in the Cretaceous Western Interior Seaway. In: Evolution of the Western Interior Basin. , ed. by Caldwell, William Glen Elliot. Geological Association of Canada Special Paper, 39 . Geological Association of Canada, St. John's, pp. 297-318.

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Abstract

The Cretaceous Western Interior seaway provided a wide, relatively shallow connection between the polar ocean and the subtropical ocean, both of which invaded the comparatively shallow western Interior Seaway and left distinctive faunal and floral records. Water masses from these very different climatic regions may have had similar densities but very different salinities and temperatures. Mixing of such disparate water masses could have produced a third water mass with a density greater than one or both of them, and this mechanism may have caused the Western Interior Seaway to become a significant source of intermediate water to the world ocean. The abrupt change in environmental conditions at the oceanic front where mixing occurred would probably have killed the plankton and introduced large amounts of organic matter into the descending, third water mass, leading to the development of an intense oxygen minimum. -from Authors

Document Type: Book chapter
Keywords: Physical oceanography, water masses, Cretaceous, Western Interior Seaway
Research affiliation: OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB1 Ocean Circulation and Climate Dynamics > FB1-P-OZ Paleo-Oceanography
Open Access Journal?: No
Date Deposited: 10 Jan 2017 07:44
Last Modified: 06 Feb 2018 13:23
URI: http://oceanrep.geomar.de/id/eprint/35539

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