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Underwater Antarctic Volcanoes Discovered In The Southern Ocean; 'There Is So Much That We Don't Understand'

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EDINBURGH, Scotland -- Scientists from British Antarctic Survey (BAS) have discovered previously unknown volcanoes in the ocean waters around the remote South Sandwich Islands. Using ship-borne sea-floor mapping technology during research cruises onboard the RRS James Clark Ross, the scientists found 12 volcanoes beneath the sea surface some up to 3km high. They found 5km diameter craters left by collapsing volcanoes and 7 active volcanoes visible above the sea as a chain of islands.

The research is important also for understanding what happens when volcanoes erupt or collapse underwater and their potential for creating serious hazards such as tsunamis. Also this sub-sea landscape, with its waters warmed by volcanic activity creates a rich habitat for many species of wildlife and adds valuable new insight about life on earth.

Speaking at the International Symposium on Antarctic Earth Sciences in Edinburgh Dr Phil Leat from British Antarctic Survey said,

"There is so much that we don't understand about volcanic activity beneath the sea it's likely that volcanoes are erupting or collapsing all the time. The technologies that scientists can now use from ships not only give us an opportunity to piece together the story of the evolution of our earth, but they also help shed new light on the development of natural events that pose hazards for people living in more populated regions on the planet."

Views expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect those of UnderwaterTimes.com, its staff or its advertisers.

Reader Comments

6 people have commented so far. cloud add your comment

A Great Discovery.This is one of the creation of God.
   comment# 1   - Grace Marohomsalic · Philippines · Jul 16, 2011 @ 8:52pm

I predict that the ice age was caused by a great volcanic eruption and I also think it will happen again. The land under the glaciers is covered with plants just waiting for the sun to shine again. There is no such thing as global warming, it is nothing more than the melting of snow and ice that did not belong there anyway.
   comment# 2   - earl fincher · Brandon, Ms. · Jul 17, 2011 @ 6:38pm

please dont mess it up.......
   comment# 3   - otis ross · columbus ohio usa. · Jul 17, 2011 @ 7:26pm

This humbles us about the sovereignty of God.
   comment# 4   - Joseph Adotey · Accra, Ghana · Jul 18, 2011 @ 11:35am

i think we shal find a lot more surprizes in the yearsahead. Things are revield to us as we are able to understand them I think.
   comment# 5   - john peters · eastbank,wv.usa · Jul 18, 2011 @ 12:08pm

I think the reason our world has not went the way of Mars is becouse it keeps renueing itself. Mabe; we should try that on our selves instead of puting so mutch poison into our selves try to renue the body, and se how long we may last !
   comment# 6   - john peters · east bank,wv.usa. · Jul 18, 2011 @ 12:20pm
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