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New bathymetric studies published: the submarine cone is at 130 m depth

Friday Jan 20, 2012 09:11 AM | BY: T

Bathymetry of the new submarine cone
Bathymetry of the new submarine cone
A long-awaited press release of the Spanish Government and the Oceanographic Institute was now published and presents the results of the latest bathymetric survey conducted last week by the crew on board Ramon Margalef , including the new bathymetric map of the new submarine volcano: the vent is now a depth of 130 m.
Compared to the latest survey in November, when it had a depth of 150 m, this means that the cone has only grown about 20 m and most of the material erupted was used to build up the circumference and sediments around it. If the eruption continues at the rate it has been over the past months, it will probably take several years to breach the surface.

The latest surveys of Ramon Margalef also estimated that 145 million cubic meters of material was deposited on the seabed. The bathymetric surveys were carried out during 10-11 January. They have also allowed to see a significant increase in volume, both of the the cone itself and the deposits around it and inside the submarine valley.
The new deposits cover almost the entire western part of the submarine canyon where the vents are located. These deposits extend down to a depth of about 2,000 meters and are piled up in a narrow section of the canyon at 950 m water depth, which acts as a lock between 2 storage areas, the upper and lower submarine fan with coarser and fine-grained materials.
The scientists on board of the Ramon Margalef have estimated that the total deposits reached 57 million cubic meters of alluvial fan to a volume of 88 million cubic meters, which is 145 million cubic meters of material deposited.
As for the evolution of the volcanic cone, the Ramon Margalef found that the earlier split vent does not exist anymore and that the volcano displayed again a single peak at coordinates: 27º 37.18' N, 17º 59. 58' W.
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