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UCL Home  /  Geography  /  News & Events  /  News  /  News Archive  /  March 2013  /  Refining the map of the oceans

Refining the map of the oceans

Matt’s research discovers new feature

Refining the map of the oceans

While undertaking research on the western British continental margin Matt Owen has helped GEBCO, The General Bathymetric Chart of the Oceans, to improve its bathymetric map of the North Atlantic.

 Matt’s doctoral research is concerned with landslides on the Barra-Donegal Fan (Indicated in the Figure), west of Scotland. This project cross-references a number of different geophysical resources and it became apparent that a very large elevated mound, indicated in the GEBCO dataset was not visible in 2D seismic data acquired by the British Geological Survey (BGS) during 1985.

 To investigate this more accurately Matt interpolated a 60 second bathymetric grid from the BGS data and subtracted these from the 30 second GEBCO bathymetry.

 The results reveal a mound covering an area of some 780 km2 with a relief of some 400 m. in comparison to the neighbouring seabed (see inset).

 As a result of these findings GEBCO checked their database and identified erroneous data. The next release of the GEBCO grid will be updated to reflect this work in UCL Geography.


Image

The British continental margin


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