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USGS Coastal and Marine Geology Program

Field Activity Details for field activity 2011-039-FA

Other ID: LSSL2011

Status: Completed

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

Funding Program(s): Law of the Sea - Outer Limits of the US Continental Margins (LQ000FQ)

Principal Investigator(s): Deborah Hutchinson

Affiliate Investigator(s): David Mosher GSC Chief Scientist

Information Specialist(s): Deborah Hutchinson

Data Type(s): Electro-Magnetic: Gravity, Location-Elevation: Navigation, Seismics: Multichannel, Sonar: Single Beam

Scientific Purpose/Goals: To determine the extent of the Extended Continental Shelf in the Arctic Ocean collaboratively with Canada.


Start Port/Location: Kugluktuk, Nunavut, Canada

End Port/Location: Cambridge Bay, Nunavut, Canada

Start Date: 2011-08-18

End Date: 2011-09-29

Equipment Used: GPS (wh), Multichannel seismics, Echosounder, Trimble 4000AX GPS receiver, Bell Aerospace BGM-3 gravimeter

Information to be Derived: sediment velocity, sediment thickness, seismic stratigraphy, tectonic boundaries,

Summary of Activity and Data Gathered: The principal objectives of the 2011 Canadian High Arctic Seismic Expedition were to acquire multichannel seismic reflection, refraction, and bathymetric data along positions that serve to establish sediment thickness, structural and morphologic criteria along Canadian and US western Arctic continental margins. Strategic ship track lines were established to complement existing data to meet UNCLOS Extended Continental Shelf (ECS) sediment thickness, bathymetric and scientific objectives. In addition, the first Autonomous Underwater Vehicle deployment from an icebreaker in the high Arctic was achieved, permitting acquisition of additional bathymetric data in areas of perennial sea ice cover. Ancillary programs included ice observations to groundtruth remotely sensed data, physical oceanographic data were acquired on an opportunistic basis and an Environment Canada O-buoy was deployed. 1437 line-km of high quality multichannel seismic reflection data were acquired in addition to seismic refraction data recorded from 21 sonobuoy deployments. 7848 line-km of single beam bathymetry, subbottom profiler and shipborne gravity data were obtained from the Louis S. St-Laurent over the course of the entire mission, plus 75 helicopter spot soundings. 110 km of bathymetric data were acquired by the AUV and in excess of 4500 line-km of multibeam bathymetric data were acquired from the USCGC Healy.


Affiliate Staff:
Geological Survey of Canada
Canadian Hydrographic Service
DRDC Atlantic

Notes: USGS participation is part of an MOU between the USGS and GSC; Data release is covered by the agreement between USGS and GSC.
Project = Law of the Sea,


Arctic Ocean

North: 88.3 South: 67 West: 179.9 East: 111


photo of Louis S St Laurent
Louis S St Laurent


Hutchinson, D., Houseknecht, D., Mosher, D., Hart, P., Jackson, R., Lebedeva-Ivanova, N., Shimeld, J., and Chian, D., The Chukchi Borderland: a sediment-starved rifted continental margin [abs.]: , 2013 Fall AGU Meeting. San Francisco,CA, December 9-13, 2013.

Lebedeva-Ivanova, N., Hutchinson, D.R., Shimeld, J., Brumley, K., Chian, D., Hart, P., Mosher, D., and Jackson, R., Inferred Mesozoic Origin of the Nautilus Basin, Arctic Ocean [abs.]: , 3P Arctic â The Polar Petroleum Potential Conference and Exhibition. Stavanger, Norway, 15-18 October, 2013.

Mosher, D.C., Shimeld, J. Hutchinson, D., Jackson, R., Chian, D., Lebedeva-Ivanova, N., Oakey, G., Evangelatos, J., Li, Q., Funck, T., Mayer, L., Verhoef, J., and Forbes, S, 2012, Re-evaluating Amerasian Basin tectonics and sedimentation with new geophysical data: , 34th IGC Conference. Brisbane, Australia, August 5-10 2012.

Mosher, D.C., Shimeld, J., Hutchinson, D., Chian, D., Lebedeva-Ivanova, N., and Jackson, R., 2012, Canada Basin Revealed: Arctic Technology Conference.

Shimeld, J., Li, Q., Chian, D., Lebedeva-Ivanova, N., Jackson, R., Mosher, D., and Hutchinson, D., 2016, Seismic velocities within the sedimentary succession of the Canada Basin and southern Alpha-Mendeleev Ridge, Arctic Ocean: Evidence for accelerated porosity reduction: Geophysical Journal International, v. 204, pp. 1–20, doi: 10.1093/gji/ggv416.


Data Acquired

Survey EquipmentSurvey InfoData Type(s)Data Collected
Multichannel seismics --- Multichannel
Echosounder --- Single Beam
Bell Aerospace BGM-3 gravimeter --- Gravity
GPS (wh) --- Navigation
Deborah R. Hutchinson ( Field navigation for multichannel seismic lines (DGPS))
Trimble 4000AX GPS receiver --- Navigation

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