Story: Sea floor geology

Drilling the floor

Drilling the floor

The ocean current known as the Ocean Conveyor flows through all the world’s oceans and helps distribute heat around the planet. Scientists believe that studying how this current flowed in the past may help predict the effects of climate change. Thick mud deposits were drilled in 1998, at seven sites below where the current passes New Zealand. The drill ship Joides Resolution recovered 3.6 kilometres of sediment cores. Their composition and fossil plankton were analysed on board. The study showed that the Ocean Conveyor has strongly influenced past climates, in particular the onset of ice ages.

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NIWA – National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research

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How to cite this page:

Keith Lewis, Scott D. Nodder and Lionel Carter, 'Sea floor geology - Exploring the sea bed', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/photograph/5631/drilling-the-floor (accessed 7 August 2020)

Story by Keith Lewis, Scott D. Nodder and Lionel Carter, published 12 Jun 2006