Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute
MBARI Research
Marine Geology research at MBARI

Marine geologists at MBARI study geologic processes and geologic features that occur in the ocean.

Some specific areas of research include:


Undersea volcanoes and seamounts

MBARI geologist David Clague studies undersea volcanoes, trying to find out how they evolve over time and where their lava comes from.
    MBARI lead researcher in this field:
    David Clague (Geologist)

Undersea hydrothermal vents

MBARI geologist David Clague studies the geologic and chemical processes that occur around deep-sea hydrothermal vents, where superheated water flows out of the seafloor.
    MBARI lead researcher in this field:
    David Clague (Geologist)

Methane in seafloor sediment

MBARI geologist Charles Paull studies how methane (natural gas) forms and moves within seafloor sediments.
Arctic permafrost and gas hydrate

MBARI geologist Charles Paull studies the stability of permafrost and methane hydrates (solidfied mixtures of water and natural gas) along the Arctic shelf.
Submarine canyons

MBARI geologist Charles Paull studies submarine canyons, trying to figure out how they form, and how much sediment and organic material they carry into the deep sea.
Undersea faults and earthquakes
Some MBARI geologists study undersea geologic faults—places where rocks in the Earth's crust slide past one another. Sometimes this sliding produces undersea earthquakes, which damage structures on land and can also cause tsunamis (popularly known as "tidal waves").
Undersea landslides

Although infrequent, undersea landslides can cause large tsunamis that pose a serious hazard to many coastal areas.
    MBARI lead researchers in this field:
    David Clague (Geologist)
Last updated: Oct. 02, 2013