Ross map: Geological Map of the Ross Sea

2008 - 2010

Funder: Foundation for Research, Science and Technology
Contact: Stuart Henrys

What feedback controls are there between tectonics, landscape and climate in the Ross Sea sector of Antarctica?


ROSSMAP is a multidisciplinary international project involving scientists from 5 nations, and over 10 institutions. The ROSSMAP team have agreed on a distribution of effort to answer the above question - New Zealand’s task is mainly concentrated in the western Ross Sea.

We will use all available geophysical and drill hole data to help establish a geological record of spatial and temporal patterns of advances of ice sheets across the Ross Sea continental shelf, determine vertical motion and initiation of marine sedimentary basins, and constrain the timing and extent of crustal extension.

Outputs and Outcomes

  • a new bathymetry map of the Ross Dependency
  • a new series of digital seismic stratigraphic and structural maps for the Ross Sea region
  • reconstructions of past sedimentary volumes and paleo-bathymetry to help identify tectonic and climate feedbacks
  • define targets for future drilling initiatives in the Ross Sea region
  • delineation of the continental shelf in the Ross Dependency
  • improved knowledge of proxies of the ice/ocean/sediment/tectonic system
  • provide a legacy of web-based electronic databases for other researchers and the public