Natural hydrocarbon seepage in the continental slope to the east of Mississippi Canyon in the northern Gulf of Mexico

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Talukder, Asrar ORCID ID icon; Ross, Andrew; Crooke, Emma; Stalvies, Charlotte ORCID ID icon; Trefry, Christine; Qi, Xiubin; Fuentes, David; Armand, Stephane; Revill, Andy ORCID ID icon


2013-06


Journal Article


Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems : G3


14


6


1940-1956


In the aftermath of the 2010 BP Deepwater Horizon incident in the Gulf of Mexico, a four month multidisciplinary marine survey was undertaken by scientists from the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) in Australia. The primary objective of the survey was the continuous monitoring of hydrocarbon abundance from the sea surface to a maximum depth of 120 m. Compound abundances were inferred using a CSIRO-developed hydrocarbon sensor array with associated vertical cast system. In order to better understand the potential inputs from natural seepage in the vicinity of the spill, a Simrad EK 60 high resolution echo-sounder, operated at 38 kHz, was included in the survey. During the period 7th of July to 15th of September 2010 three seep sites characterised by hydro-acoustic plumes were discovered on the continental slope east of Mississippi Canyon, at water depths between ca. 430 m and 1400 m. These seep sites were associated with extensive cold seep systems. The repeated survey at two of the sites suggest that the cold seep systems here were active, with vigorous fluxes of hydrocarbons, at least during the periods of our acoustic surveys. Multiple lines of evidence gathered during the survey point to the suggestion that the observed hydro-acoustic plumes at the three sites identified consist of oily bubble streams of gases of thermogenic origin. However, direct observation and sampling are required to reveal the true nature of the plumes.


American Geophysical Union


natural seepage; Deepwater Horizon; Gulf of Mexico


Marine Geoscience


https://doi.org/10.1002/ggge.20130


Link to Publisher's Version


© 2013. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.


EP122581


Journal article - Refereed


English


Talukder, Asrar; Ross, Andrew; Crooke, Emma; Stalvies, Charlotte; Trefry, Christine; Qi, Xiubin; Fuentes, David; Armand, Stephane; Revill, Andy. Natural hydrocarbon seepage in the continental slope to the east of Mississippi Canyon in the northern Gulf of Mexico. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems : G3. 2013; 14(6):1940-1956. https://doi.org/10.1002/ggge.20130



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