Contourite drift evolution and related coral growth in the eastern Gulf of Mexico and its gateways.

Hübscher, Christian, Dullo, Wolf-Christian , Flögel, Sascha, Titschack, Jürgen and Schönfeld, Joachim (2010) Contourite drift evolution and related coral growth in the eastern Gulf of Mexico and its gateways. International Journal of Earth Sciences, 99, SI . S191-S206. DOI 10.1007/s00531-010-0558-6.

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Abstract

Sediment subbottom profiler and multi-beam data reveal that sediment drifts evolved in various depth intervals between 420 and 650 m water depth in the eastern Golf of Mexico and its gateways. Drift evolution on the western flank of the Yucatan Strait is controlled by the northbound Loop Current down to 800 m and by a countercurrent beneath. On the northern Campeche Bank and the West Florida Slope, drifts evolved in depth of 520–600 m and 420–550 m, respectively. In both instances, the causative contour current represents a counter flow to the Loop Current. The varying depth ranges correlate with an eastward rise of the upper boundary of the Antarctic Intermediate Water. The geometry and reflection pattern of upper slope deposits strongly suggest that the causative bottom current velocities in the eastern Gulf of Mexico varied significantly in space and time. The subbottom profiler data further show peculiar stacked diffraction hyperbolae in depths between 480 and 600 m. Camera and video observations from the seafloor off western Florida imply that the diffraction hyperbolas are formed by boulders and cliffs of sedimentary rock, which are locally colonized by coldwater corals, such as Lophelia pertusa, octocorals and stylasterids.

Document Type: Article
Keywords: Sedimentology; Bottom currents; Contourite drifts; Cold-water corals; Hydroacoustics; Seafloor video observation; Gulf of Mexico
Research affiliation: OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB1 Ocean Circulation and Climate Dynamics > FB1-P-OZ Paleo-Oceanography
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: No
DOI etc.: 10.1007/s00531-010-0558-6
ISSN: 1437-3254
Expeditions/Models/Experiments:
Date Deposited: 25 Aug 2010 08:54
Last Modified: 18 May 2017 12:35
URI: http://oceanrep.geomar.de/id/eprint/8819

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