Minimum distribution of subsea ice-bearing permafrost on the U.S. Beaufort Sea continental shelf


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dc.contributor.author Brothers, Laura L.
dc.contributor.author Hart, Patrick E.
dc.contributor.author Ruppel, Carolyn D.
dc.date.accessioned 2012-09-21T13:58:41Z
dc.date.available 2012-09-21T13:58:41Z
dc.date.issued 2012-08-07
dc.identifier.citation Geophysical Research Letters 39 (2012): L15501 en_US
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/1912/5375
dc.description This paper is not subject to U.S. copyright. The definitive version was published in Geophysical Research Letters 39 (2012): L15501, doi:10.1029/2012GL052222. en_US
dc.description.abstract Starting in Late Pleistocene time (~19 ka), sea level rise inundated coastal zones worldwide. On some parts of the present-day circum-Arctic continental shelf, this led to flooding and thawing of formerly subaerial permafrost and probable dissociation of associated gas hydrates. Relict permafrost has never been systematically mapped along the 700-km-long U.S. Beaufort Sea continental shelf and is often assumed to extend to ~120 m water depth, the approximate amount of sea level rise since the Late Pleistocene. Here, 5,000 km of multichannel seismic (MCS) data acquired between 1977 and 1992 were examined for high-velocity (>2.3 km s−1) refractions consistent with ice-bearing, coarse-grained sediments. Permafrost refractions were identified along <5% of the tracklines at depths of ~5 to 470 m below the seafloor. The resulting map reveals the minimum extent of subsea ice-bearing permafrost, which does not extend seaward of 30 km offshore or beyond the 20 m isobath. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship This research was sponsored by DOE-USGS Interagency Agreement DE-FE0002911. L.B. was supported by a DOE NETL/NRC Methane Hydrate Fellowship under DE-FC26-05NT42248. en_US
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.publisher American Geophysical Union en_US
dc.relation.uri http://dx.doi.org/10.1029/2012GL052222
dc.subject Beaufort Sea
dc.subject Climate change
dc.subject Methane hydrates
dc.subject Refraction
dc.subject Sea level
dc.subject Subsea permafrost
dc.title Minimum distribution of subsea ice-bearing permafrost on the U.S. Beaufort Sea continental shelf en_US
dc.type Article en_US
dc.identifier.doi 10.1029/2012GL052222

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