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Sea-Floor Sunday #42: Faulted sea floor, Ionian Sea

March 15, 2009

The majority of Sea-Floor Sunday images I show are maps of sea-floor topography (or bathymetry), so this week I am instead going to show a cross section image of the sea floor and shallow subsurface.

Last year I posted about the online seismic-reflection image collection website Virtual Seismic Atlas. They now have 410 individual images and are always getting more (in fact, if you have access to images that could be released to the public, they are always looking for data donors).

They have several fantastic images from a survey in the Ionian Sea (south of Italy). The first one below is about 25 km across (click on image to go to page on VSA).

Faulted foredeep and outer rise, Calabrian trench (credit: Rob Butler, seismicatlas.org)

Faulted foredeep and outer rise, Calabrian trench (credit: Rob Butler, seismicatlas.org)

The next image below zooms in a bit more to show the detail.

Calabrian trench (credit: seismicatlas.org)

Calabrian trench (credit: seismicatlas.org)

The image below is the same as above but with some annotation explaining the features.

Calabrian trench with annotation (credit: Rob Butler, seismicatlas.org)

Calabrian trench with annotation (credit: Rob Butler, seismicatlas.org)

And, zoomed in a bit.

Calabrian trench with annotation (credit: Rob Butler, seismicatlas.org)

Calabrian trench with annotation (credit: Rob Butler, seismicatlas.org)

The high-resolution images of both the interpreted and uninterpreted profiles can be found here.

What’s great about the Virtual Seismic Atlas site is that many of the images are of sufficient resolution and quality that they could be used for teaching (e.g., a tectonics and sedimentation class).


To learn more about the tectonic evolution of this area, check out this page from Columbia University’s Earth Institute.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. TheRamblingPoet permalink
    January 10, 2010 12:01 pm

    I need to know are there 3 volcanoes in the Ionian region two larger and one considerably smaller I am trying to research the possibility of a dream I had coming true that 3 volcanoes were getting ready to erupt possibly starting with the smaller ones activity setting off the other two.

  2. January 10, 2010 12:20 pm

    Sorry RamblingPoet, but you’re gonna have to do your own research on that one :)

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