Publications

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2016
Harding, AJ, Arnulf AF, Blackman DK.  2016.  Velocity structure near IODP Hole U1309D, Atlantis Massif, from waveform inversion of streamer data and borehole measurements. Geochemistry Geophysics Geosystems. 17:1990-2014.   10.1002/2016gc006312   AbstractWebsite

Seismic full waveform inversion (FWI) is a promising method for determining the detailed velocity structure of the igneous oceanic crust, especially for locations such as the Mid-Atlantic Ridge with significant lateral heterogeneity and seafloor topography. We examine the accuracy of FWI by inverting, after downward continuation to datum just above the seafloor, a multichannel seismic (MCS) profile from Atlantis Massif oceanic core complex at 30 degrees N that passes close to Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP) Hole U1309D and comparing the results against borehole measurements and existing on-bottom refraction data. The comparisons include the results of IODP Expedition 340T, which extended the sonic logging and vertical seismic profiling to the bottom of the borehole at 1400 m below seafloor. Compared to travel time tomography, the refinement in velocity and velocity gradient produced by FWI significantly improves the overall match to the borehole measurements, and allows the multilevel pattern of deformation and alteration of the detachment footwall seen in Hole U1309D to be extrapolated across the Central Dome. Prestack depth migration of the profile using the FWI velocities reveals the top and edges of the high-velocity, gabbroic core of the massif. It also indicates that the comparatively uniform gabbroic rocks drilled at Hole U1309D extend to approximate to 2.5 km below seafloor but overlie an extended, approximate to 2 km thick, mantle transition zone.

2015
Greene, JA, Tominaga M, Blackman DK.  2015.  Geologic implications of seafloor character and carbonate lithification imaged on the domal core of Atlantis Massif. Deep-Sea Research Part Ii-Topical Studies in Oceanography. 121:246-255.   10.1016/j.dsr2.2015.06.020   AbstractWebsite

We document the seafloor character on Atlantis Massif, an ocean core complex located at 30 degrees N on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, with an emphasis on the distribution of carbonate features. Seafloor imagery, near-bottom backscatter, and bathymetry were analyzed on the Central Dome and the Western Shoulder of the exposed footwall to the detachment, and on the Eastern Block, a hanging wall to the fault. We merged Argo II still images to produce photo-mosaics and evaluated these together with video imagery, acoustic reflectivity, and basic rock composition. The seafloor was classified as unconsolidated sediment, lithified carbonate crust, consolidated carbonate cap, exposed basement, or rubble, and the spatial distribution of each type was assessed. Unconsolidated sediment, exposed basement, and rubble were documented in all three regions studied. Lithified carbonate crust was also present on the Western Shoulder and eastern Central Dome. Consolidated carbonate cap was found on the Eastern Block. The formation of the carbonate rock is interpreted to reflect precipitation and/or sediment cementation via fluids derived from serpentinization. Both processes occur at the nearby Lost City Hydrothermal Field. The newly documented locations of seafloor carbonate lithification therefore mark pathways of past, possibly recent, fluid flux from subsurface water-rock reaction zones and represent an additional constituent of the carbon cycling hosted by oceanic lithosphere. (C) 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

2011
Blackman, DK, Ildefonse B, John BE, Ohara Y, Miller DJ, Abe N, Abratis M, Andal ES, Andreani M, Awaji S, Beard JS, Brunelli D, Charney AB, Christie DM, Collins J, Delacour AG, Delius H, Drouin M, Einaudi F, Escartin J, Frost BR, Fruh-Green G, Fryer PB, Gee JS, Godard M, Grimes CB, Halfpenny A, Hansen HE, Harris AC, Tamura A, Hayman NW, Hellebrand E, Hirose T, Hirth JG, Ishimaru S, Johnson KTM, Karner GD, Linek M, MacLeod CJ, Maeda J, Mason OU, McCaig AM, Michibayashi K, Morris A, Nakagawa T, Nozaka T, Rosner M, Searle RC, Suhr G, Tominaga M, von der Handt A, Yamasaki T, Zhao X.  2011.  Drilling constraints on lithospheric accretion and evolution at Atlantis Massif, Mid-Atlantic Ridge 30°N. Journal of Geophysical Research-Solid Earth. 116   10.1029/2010jb007931   AbstractWebsite

Expeditions 304 and 305 of the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program cored and logged a 1.4 km section of the domal core of Atlantis Massif. Postdrilling research results summarized here constrain the structure and lithology of the Central Dome of this oceanic core complex. The dominantly gabbroic sequence recovered contrasts with predrilling predictions; application of the ground truth in subsequent geophysical processing has produced self-consistent models for the Central Dome. The presence of many thin interfingered petrologic units indicates that the intrusions forming the domal core were emplaced over a minimum of 100-220 kyr, and not as a single magma pulse. Isotopic and mineralogical alteration is intense in the upper 100 m but decreases in intensity with depth. Below 800 m, alteration is restricted to narrow zones surrounding faults, veins, igneous contacts, and to an interval of locally intense serpentinization in olivine-rich troctolite. Hydration of the lithosphere occurred over the complete range of temperature conditions from granulite to zeolite facies, but was predominantly in the amphibolite and greenschist range. Deformation of the sequence was remarkably localized, despite paleomagnetic indications that the dome has undergone at least 45 degrees rotation, presumably during unroofing via detachment faulting. Both the deformation pattern and the lithology contrast with what is known from seafloor studies on the adjacent Southern Ridge of the massif. There, the detachment capping the domal core deformed a 100 m thick zone and serpentinized peridotite comprises similar to 70% of recovered samples. We develop a working model of the evolution of Atlantis Massif over the past 2 Myr, outlining several stages that could explain the observed similarities and differences between the Central Dome and the Southern Ridge.

2008
Blackman, DK, Karner GD, Searle RC.  2008.  Three-dimensional structure of oceanic core complexes: Effects on gravity signature and ridge flank morphology, Mid-Atlantic Ridge, 30°N. Geochemistry Geophysics Geosystems. 9   10.1029/2008gc001951   AbstractWebsite

Our gravity modeling of oceanic core complexes formed at the Mid-Atlantic Ridge near 30 degrees N suggests that their shallow, domal "cores'' could be dominated by mafic intrusive rocks, consistent with recent drilling results at Atlantis Massif. The three-dimensional gravity analysis incorporates additional underway geophysics data in a new compilation and uses a higher-resolution bathymetry model to remove the gravity contribution of seafloor topography. The additional detail is required in order to confidently relate few-kilometer-scale gravity anomalies to specific morphologic/tectonic blocks. Different models of subseafloor core complex structure and density are tested to determine which minimizes the local gravity anomaly. A 3-D core with density 2900 kg/m(3), as measured in the gabbroic section drilled at the central dome, and juxtaposed 3-D hanging wall of fractured basalt, density similar to 2600 kg/m(3), satisfactorily explains most of the Bouguer gravity anomaly at Atlantis Massif. The capping detachment fault terminates or plunges northward beneath the seafloor at the northern limit of the central dome. The southwest shoulder of the massif has lower density, consistent with an upper crustal section similar to 1 km thick, whereas the summit and southeastern shoulder have overall density similar to the central dome. The older core complexes distributed along Atlantis fracture zone are similar in size, depth, and distance of their summit from the transform fault. However, weathering/alteration probably has reduced their density somewhat compared to Atlantis Massif. Bathymetric embayments occur adjacent to the fracture zone in several places on the ridge flanks and are consistently associated with core complexes.