Scientists to Embark on Australia Cretaceous Climate and Tectonics Expedition

The International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) will begin expedition 369, “Australia Cretaceous Climate and Tectonics – Tectonic, paleoclimate, and paleoceanographic history of the Mentelle Basin and Naturaliste Plateau at southern high latitudes during the Cretaceous” using the vessel JOIDES Resolution on September 26, 2017.

This scientfic expediction will collect data and core samples from drilling sites in the Great Australian Bight and the Mentelle Basin.

It aims to investigate the timing and causes for the rise and collapse of the Cretaceous hothouse and how this climate mode affected the climate-ocean system and oceanic biota; determine the relative roles of productivity, ocean temperature, and ocean circulation at high southern latitudes during Cretaceous oceanic anoxic events; 3) identify the main source regions for deep- and intermediate water masses in the southeast Indian Ocean and how these changed during Gondwana breakup; characterize how oceanographic conditions changed at the Naturaliste Plateau during the Cenozoic opening of the Tasman Passage and restriction of the Indonesian Gatewa; and resolve questions on the volcanic and sedimentary origins of the basin and provide vital strati graphic control on the age and nature of the pre-breakup succession.

A total of 31 participating members include three scientists from Japan, and those from the U.S., European countries, Brazil, China, India and Australia.

IODP is a multinational cooperative project that started in October 2013. The scientific drilling vessel D/V Chikyu, operated by Japan, and the JOIDES Resolution, operated by the U.S., are utilized for expeditions.

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