World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Gakkel Ridge

Article Id: WHEBN0000271269
Reproduction Date:

Title: Gakkel Ridge  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Mid-Atlantic Ridge, Southwest Indian Ridge, List of Russian explorers, Amundsen Basin, Greenland Plate
Collection: Underwater Ridges of the Arctic Ocean
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Gakkel Ridge

Main bathymetric/topographic features of the Arctic Ocean
Pillow lava from the Gakkel Ridge

The Gakkel Ridge (formerly known as the Nansen Cordillera and Arctic Mid-Ocean Ridge)[1] is a mid-oceanic ridge, a divergent tectonic plate boundary between the North American Plate and the Eurasian Plate.[2] It is located in the Arctic Ocean between Greenland and Siberia, and has a length of about 1,800 kilometers. Geologically, it connects the northern end of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge with the Laptev Sea Rift.

The existence and approximate location of the Gakkel Ridge were predicted by Soviet polar explorer Yakov Yakovlevich Gakkel, and confirmed on Soviet expeditions in the Arctic around 1950. The Ridge is named after him, and the name was recognized in April 1987 by SCUFN (under that body's old name, the Sub-Committee on Geographical Names and Nomenclature of Ocean Bottom Features).[1]

The ridge is the slowest known spreading ridge on earth, with a rate of less than one centimeter per year. Until 1999, it was believed to be non-volcanic; that year, scientists operating from a nuclear submarine discovered active volcanos along it. In 2001 two research icebreakers, the German Polarstern and the American Healy, with several groups of scientists, cruised to the Gakkel Ridge to explore it and collect petrological samples. Among other discoveries, this expedition found evidence of hydrothermal vents. In 2007, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution conducted the "Arctic Gakkel Vents Expedition" (AGAVE), which made some unanticipated discoveries, including the unconsolidated fragmented pyroclastic volcanic deposits that cover the axial valley of the ridge (whose area is greater than 10 km2). These suggest volatile substances in concentrations ten times those in the magmas of normal mid-ocean ridges.[3] The AGAVE expedition also discovered on the Gakkel ridge, using "free-swimming" robotic submersibles, what they called "bizarre 'mats' of microbial communities containing a half dozen or more new species".[4]


  1. ^ a b "IHO-IOC GEBCO Gazetteer" (PDF).  
  2. ^ "GPS Measurements Reveal Imprint of North American Plate in Siberia", Earth Institute at Columbia University, 2003
  3. ^ Robert A. Sohn, et al., Explosive volcanism on the ultraslow-spreading Gakkel ridge, Arctic Ocean, Nature 453, 1236-1238 (26 June 2008) | doi:10.1038/nature07075 (abstract)
  4. ^ The Arctic Gakkel Vents (AGAVE) Expedition: A High–Stakes Technology Gamble Pays Big Dividends Beneath the Arctic Ice Cap, Ridge 2000 Abstracts 2009
  • Evidence of Recent Volcanic Activity Found Along the Slow-Spreading Gakkel RidgeKristen Watson, Mar. 2001,

Further reading

  • Jokat, Wilfried, and Mechita C. Schmidt-Aursch. 2007. "Geophysical Characteristics of the Ultraslow Spreading Gakkel Ridge, Arctic Ocean". Geophysical Journal International. 168, no. 3: 983-998. doi:10.1111/j.1365-246X.2006.03278.x

External links

  • Polar Discovery: Gakkel Ridge

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.