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Gas hydrate crystals may help build reefs
Henriet, J.-P.; De Mol, B.; Pillen, S.; Vanneste, M.; Van Rooij, D.; Versteeg, W.; Croker, P.F.; Shannon, P.M.; Unnithan, V.; Bouriak, S.; Chachkine, P. (1998). Gas hydrate crystals may help build reefs. Nature (Lond.) 391: 648-649
In: Nature: International Weekly Journal of Science. Nature Publishing Group: London. ISSN 0028-0836, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in  Authors 
    VLIZ: Open Repository 21295 [ OMA ]

Keywords
    Crystallization; Gas hydrates; Reefs; ANE, Porcupine Abyssal Plain [Marine Regions]; Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Henriet, J.-P., more
  • De Mol, B., more
  • Pillen, S.
  • Vanneste, M.
  • Van Rooij, D., more
  • Versteeg, W., more
  • Croker, P.F.
  • Shannon, P.M.
  • Unnithan, V.
  • Bouriak, S.
  • Chachkine, P.

Abstract
    During a recent cruise in the Porcupine Basin, off southwest Ireland, we discovered two extensive and hitherto largely unsuspected deep-water reef provinces, including a giant cluster of hundreds of buried mounds. The ring shapes of many reefs suggest that they are caused by an axial fluid expulsion at the sea bed, a transient flow well confined in space and time. We are exploring various hypotheses, but a stimulating avenue for research is opened by a glacially controlled growth pulse and subsequent decay of a shallow layer of gas hydrates as a methane buffer and probably indirectly as a ground for overlying biological communities.

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