New research from the University of Missouri indicates that Atlantic Ocean temperatures during the greenhouse climate of the Late Cretaceous Epoch were influenced by circulation in the deep ocean. These changes in circulation patterns 70 million years ago could help scientists understand the consequences of modern increases in greenhouse gases.
Doing some detective work, biologists and earth scientists surveyed 18 coasts worldwide, evaluating contamination by small particles of plastic. Based on the size and shape of the particles, they concluded that fibers loosened during a typical laundry cycle in a washing machine could be the primary source for this swiftly growing form of pollution.
Earth's largest mass extinction event eradicated an estimated 90% of Earth's marine life. To better understand the cause of this "mother of all mass extinctions," researchers from Arizona State University and the University of Cincinnati used a new geochemical technique to discover something new: the relative change in anoxia conditions in the ocean.
A technology commonly used to map the bottom of the deep ocean can also detect gas seeps in the water column with remarkably high fidelity, according to scientists from the University of New Hampshire and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
The Deepwater Horizon spill contained a large amount of natural gas, which immediately became food for bacteria. In a new study, scientists explain how they used DNA to identify the microbes present in the Gulf of Mexico during the spill, and how temperature played a role the microbes' ability to consume the gas.
At the end of the last Ice Age, atmospheric carbon dioxide levels rose rapidly as the planet warmed; scientists have long hypothesized that the source was carbon dioxide released from the deep ocean. But a new study using detailed radiocarbon dating of foraminifera found in a sediment core from the Gorda Ridge off Oregon reveals that the Northeast Pacific was not an important reservoir of carbon during glacial times.
Using both legacy data and imagery collected by the satellite observatory Aquarius after it went operation on Aug. 25, NASA has put together the first complete map of salinity distribution in the world’s oceans. Salinity patterns revealed by the map has already surprised researchers.
Farms of 'underwater windmills' could affect how sand moves around our coastal seas, affecting beaches, sand banks, and ultimately the risk of flooding, according to Bangor University oceanographer Simon Neill. Writing in Planet Earth , Neill explains how tidal energy farms are like roadworks.
Often called the Graveyard of the Atlantic or Torpedo Junction, the seas off the coast of North Carolina during World War II were the site of a devastating period for the United States, during which dozens of ships—mostly merchant vessels—were sunk by German U Boats. Researchers have joined forces and technologies to conduct a large-scale marine archaeology project of the area.
With the help of billions of data points captured by European, Japanese and Canadian satellites to weed out cloud cover, solar glare and other blocking features, NASA-funded researchers have created the first complete map of the speed and direction of ice flow in Antarctica.
New research from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) suggests dioxygen may have been made on Earth hundreds of millions of years before its debut in the atmosphere, keeping a low profile in "oxygen oases" in the oceans.
Scattered across the world's largest island, as big as Alaska and California combined and 80% covered by ice, small bands of specialists are searching for signs of how quickly the glaciers the are melting, and what that might mean for the world’s sea level.
New findings, resulting from a decade of research, show striking recurring patterns of marine virioplankton dynamics in the open sea, which have implications regarding our understanding of cycling of nutrients in the world's oceans.
According to the latest studies of volcanic samples, rock of the oceanic crust, which sinks deep into the earth due to the movement of tectonic plates, reemerges through volcanic eruptions after around 500 million years. Geologists had thought this process would take about 2 billion years.
Located about 250 miles off the Oregon coast, the volcanic Axial Seamount was recently found to have erupted, fulfilling the predictions of two scientists five years earlier. The feat is the first successful forecast of an undersea volcanic eruption.
The Tohoku Tsunami triggered by a major earthquake in northern Japan this spring did more than devastate northern Japan. It also freed massive icebergs from Sulzberger Ice Shelf. Scientists just published the first study that directly observes this type of connection.
Since the early 2000s a dozen experimental floating test platforms called Carbon Explorers have produced detailed information on the carbon cycle in the world’s oceans. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s next-generation platform, the Carbon Flux Explorer, survived a brief three-day test in a stormy gale and will soon fully deploy.
Robert Ballard, who discovered the Titanic wreck in 1985, is aiming to find far older sunken vessels in the Black, Aegean and Mediterranean seas. His research vessel, the E/V Nautilus, has launched on a four-month voyage to comb grounds covered by sailors of ancient history.
Researchers have found that melting ice sheets contributed much more to rising sea levels than thermal expansion of warming ocean waters during the Last Interglacial Period. The results further suggest that ocean levels continue to rise long after warming of the atmosphere levels off.
Driven away by Somali pirates, international scientists are asking the Australian and U.S. navies for a favor: deploy 19 robotic instruments in the Indian Ocean to record critical data on climate and monsoon.
Researchers at the University of Illinois have become the first to record an airglow signature in the upper atmosphere produced by a tsunami using a camera system based in Maui, Hawaii. It preceded the tsunami by one hour, suggesting that the technology could be used as an early-warning system in the future.
As the world focused on the ongoing crisis in the Gulf of Mexico after the blowout of BP’s Deepwater Horizon Macondo well, Berkeley Lab researchers dropped everything to estimate how much oil was flowing from the mangled wellhead. Computational modeling generated a relatively accurate measurement within days, and their has prompted new discoveries about flow based on reservoir permeability and other factors.
Scientists who study tectonic motions have known for decades that the ongoing "pull" and "push" movements of the plates are responsible for sculpting continental features around the planet. Now, evidence has been presented to support the idea that hot spots of magma plumes from deep in the Earth could propel plate motions around the globe.
The drilling team from the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP) have pushed Hole 1256D, a deep scientific borehole, more than 1,500 m below the seafloor and into the Pacific Ocean's igneous crust. They are now encountering metamorphic rocks that is sometimes even tougher than the most resilient of hard formation drilling and coring bits.
The Northwest Passage, the route through the frigid archipelago from Alaska across northern Canada, has been ice-free from one end to the other only twice in recorded history, in 1998 and 2007. But the ice pack is retreating farther and more frequently during the summers.