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The Pacific Ocean is the largest and the deepest ocean. Most submersible dives follow a similar pattern, emphasizing bottom transecting, collecting and photographing specimens. To understand our ocean floor exploration, you must first know something about the ocean floor. Follow along below as I summarize the parts of the ocean floor.
Alvin is a three-person, self-propelling capsule-like submarine nearly eight meters long. Since the introduction of Alvin, other manned submersibles have been built and used successfully to explore the deep ocean floor. Now for the ocean floor, the continental margin is the ocean floor.
It is located between the shoreline and the deep-ocean bottom. The deep ocean basin is a depression in the ocean floor that varies in depth and includes all of the deep parts of the ocean between the continents.
The continental shelf regions also contain the highest amount of plants and animals that live on the ocean floor. It begins at the continental shelf break, or where the bottom sharply drops off into a steep slope.
The continental slope together with the continental shelf is called the continental margin. Past the continental slope, we find the continental rise. As currents flow along the continental shelf and down the continental slope, they pick up and carry sediments and deposit them just below the continental slope.
These sediments gather to form the large, gentle slope of the continental rise. The abyssal plain is the flat, deep ocean floor. It is almost featureless because a thick layer of sediment covers the hills and valleys of the ocean floor below it.
Deep-sea trenches are the deepest parts of the ocean. We have reached the mid-ocean ridge which is two chains of mountains separated by a large depression that forms where two plates are drifting apart.
Iceland, along the mid-Atlantic Ridge, is an example of this. In the rift valley new oceanic crust is being made. Lots of seismic activity is happening in this area. Here you will find the hydrothermal vents.
Coming up are the seamounts. Most seamounts began life as volcanoes formed over hot spots in the ocean floor. After the crust moves off the hot spot, the volcanic activity stops. Seamounts whose peaks have eroded and become a flat surface are called guyots.
Coral reefs sometimes grow around seamounts that rise above the ocean waters.
As the seamount sinks or its peak erodes, the seamount will disappear beneath the water leaving the coral ring. This is called an atoll.
Now that the homework is over, we are ready to dive. Day One — When we began this project, I thought the ocean floor would be similar to a big sandy beach.
Boy was I wrong! The ocean floor is actually irregular with mountains, plains, volcanoes, valleys, and ridges. Using the manned submersible Alvin, we will venture to the bottom of the ocean.
Initially, I was challenged with learning the ropes of life on a ship. There were many changes requiring my adjustment. Sleeping in small bunks, eating at odd times, and understanding military time are just three of the challenges. Conquering my fear of diving is probably the biggest challenge.
Although life on the sea is exciting, after a while it becomes boring. Life on the ocean involves waking up at the same time, working at the same time, eating at the same time, and relaxing at the same time.
Today we are using a multi-beam bathymetry which will allow us to see the shape of the ocean floor. By taking these pictures scientists will have a very accurate water depth and terrain models.Published: Mon, 5 Dec Coastal erosion is a natural process in which sand and rocks are dislodged from the shoreline by various eroding agents.
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