Structural geology and tectonic significance of basin-fill sedimentary rocks, of ice-transported boulders therein and of volcanics recovered by ANDRILL cores in the McMurdo Sound region

Implications for the Cenozoic tectonic and clacial/climatic evolution of the Ross Sea region


Dr. Andreas Läufer 
Bundesanstalt für Geowissenschaften und Rohstoffe (BGR)


The ANtarctic DRILLing Program (ANDRILL) will drill a stratigraphic core from a platform located on Ross Island in the McMurdo Ice Shelf (MIS) sector of the Ross Ice Shelf. Drilling is scheduled for the 2006/07 season. Primary target is a 1.2 km thick succession of Plio-Pleistocene glacimarine, terrigenous, volcanic, and biogenic sediments that were deposited in a flexural moat depression formed by loading of the Ross Island volcanic complex. The drill site is located within the Victoria Land Basin of the West Antarctic Rift System. Its western termination is represented by the Transantarctic Mountains front, an asymmetric rift shoulder that is segmented by numerous transverse and oblique faults and has experienced several phases of uplift and denudation since the Cretaceous. The primary goal will be the analysis of natural fractures in the core and the reconstruction of kinematics and dynamics of rifting, the related faulting history, and palaeostress states in the western Ross Sea in Late Neogene-Recent times. Absolute age constraints are expected from dating tephra horizons within the sequence. Additionally, provenance studies of ice-transported basement boulder-to pebble-size clasts in the cores will be done in collaboration with petrology and geo- and thermochronology teams. These studies will provide a tool for correlation with rock types in the hinterland and will help to identify potential directions of ice flow in the past.

DFG-Verfahren: Infrastruktur-Schwerpunktprogramme

Förderung von 2006 - 2007