Scientists are always interested where hydrothermal vents are located. However, when a new field is discovered with properties not previously seen, the excitement reaches a whole new level.
As ocean temperatures increase, a pressing global challenge in marine science is to better understand the distribution and characteristics of the critical habitats that support mesophotic and deep-water coral communities.
Within Australia’s largest marine reserve, the recently established Coral Sea Marine Park, lies the Queensland Plateau, one of the world’s largest continental margin plateaus at nearly 300,000 square kilometers.
The 1888 Ritter Island (Papua New Guinea) landslide was the largest historical volcanic-island landslide ever recorded and generated a devastating regional tsunami.
Ashmore Reef Marine Park is home to unique coral ecosystems: Mesophotic Coral Ecosystems (MCEs). While the waters of Australia are famous for shallower coral systems such as the Great Barrier Reef, MCEs there (and around the globe) remain largely unknown and undocumented.
Methane is a more potent greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide, but exists at far lower concentrations in the atmosphere. Many think of methane as a free-floating gas so it can be a surprise to learn that nearly one-fifth of the Earth’s methane is stored beneath the ocean’s waters in marine sediments in the form of gas hydrate.
The Gulf of California is a young ocean undergoing changes including active seafloor spreading, early rifting, and large-scale hydrothermal activity. The rare combination of geological dynamics present in the Gulf of California makes it an ideal place to advance our understanding of deep ocean hydrothermal ecosystems.