USGS Coastal and Marine Geology Program

Coastal & Marine Geology Program

Field Activity Details for field activity 1982-032-FA

Other ID: AST 82-3

Status: Completed

Organization(s): USGS, Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center

Funding Program(s):

Principal Investigator(s): Sally Needell

Affiliate Investigator(s): Ralph Lewis - Geologist, Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection

Information Specialist(s):

Data Type(s): Location-Elevation: Navigation, Seismics: Boomer, Sonar: Sidescan

Scientific Purpose/Goals: (1) Define the geology and shallow structure of eastern Long Island Sound; (2) determine the geologic framework and Quaternary development of the study area; (3) identify and map potential geologic hazards; and (4) test the 300 J pressurized minisparker across Block Island Sound and compare records with Uniboom records from ASTERIAS 81-2, Block Island Sound cruise, September 1982.


Start Date: 1982-09-08

Start Port/Location:

End Date: 1982-09-19

End Port/Location:

Equipment Used: EG&G 234, Edo Western Sidescan and 2.5 kHz sub-bottom system, Loran-C, Single channel hydrophone

Information to be Derived: Sea floor map; Morphology;

Summary of Activity and Data Gathered: Despite numerous equipment failures during the first 4 days of the survey, the Uniboom data were very good (excellent resolution and good penetration) except in areas underlain by gas which attenuated the signal. Sidescan sonar records were satisfactory. Records collected in Block Island Sound using the minisparker system were compared to former Uniboom records. The sparker records were found to be inferior in resolution and penetration. Minisparker: 43 km; Uniboom: 677 km; Sidescan sonar: 511 km.

Staff: Jack Connell, Sally Needell

Affiliate Staff:
Ralph Lewis
Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection

Notes: Original Center People field contained: Sally Wood Needell, Chief Scientist; Jack Connell, Electronics Technician. Original Submitted By field contained: Sally Wood Needell.
Project = New England Coastal Geology, New England Coastal Geology


Block Island Sound;

North: 41.2 South: 41 West: -72.75 East: -71.5


photo of Asterias


Poppe, L.J., Williams, S. J., Moser, M. S., Forfinski, N. A., Stewart, H. F., and Doran, E. F., 2008, Quaternary geology and sedimentary processes in the vicinity of Six Mile Reef, eastern Long Island Sound: Journal of Coastal Research, v. 24 no. 1, doi: 10.2112/06-0743.1.

Poppe, L.J., Denny, J.F., Williams, S.J., Moser, M.S., Forfinski, N.A., Stewart, H.F., and Doran, E.F., 2007, The geology of Six Mile Reef, Eastern Long Island Sound: URL:

Poppe, L.J., Paskevich, V.F., Lewis, R.S., and DiGiacomo-Cohen, M.L., 2002, Geological framework data from Long Island Sound, 1981-1990; a digital data release: URL:


Data Acquired

Survey EquipmentSurvey InfoData Type(s)Data Collected
EG&G 234 --- Boomer
Edo Western Sidescan and 2.5 kHz sub-bottom system --- Sub Bottom Profiler
1982-032-FA-SO-002 ( microfilm of )
1982-032-FA-SO-001 ( Collection of paper record displays of sidescan sonar data for lines )
Loran-C --- Navigation
1982-032-FA-LN-002-01 ( Navigation data)
1982-032-FA-LN-001 ( Navigation trackline plot for field activity 82032)
Single channel hydrophone --- Air Gun / Water Gun
Bubble Gun
Sub Bottom Profiler
1982-032-FA-SE-002-01 ( Scanned seismic record sections)
1982-032-FA-SE-001 ( microfilm of )