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REF NO.: 214

SUBJECT: Memorial University’s Oil and Gas Partnership Lecture Series continues with study on continental drift

DATE: Aug. 29

Memorial University's Oil and Gas Development Partnership (OGDP) lecture series continues on Monday, Sept. 8, 2003, with a lecture titled Drilling results from the deep sedimentary basin east of the Grand Banks. The lecture will be given by Dr. Brian Tucholke, the Henry Bryant Bigelow Chair for Excellence in Oceanography, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Massachusetts.

The lecture takes place at 5 p.m. in the Engineering Lecture Theatre, EN-2006, located in the S.J. Carew (Engineering) Building, Arctic Avenue, just off the Prince Philip Parkway. Parking is available in Lot 16. Admission is free and all are welcome to attend.

Dr. Tucholke will be arriving on the D/V JOIDES Resolution, a sophisticated ocean-going research drill ship and floating laboratory used by the international Ocean Drilling Program (ODP). The ship will visit St. Johns Sept. 6-9, 2003. The port call comes after the final ODP expedition, where scientists are attempting to drill a hole 2200 meters below the seafloor in the central Newfoundland Basin the deepest ever drilled during the 20-year program.

When it arrives in St. Johns, the ship and its crew of 50 scientists and technicians from around the world will have just completed a two month cruise, known as Leg 210, that studied the structure and evolution of non-volcanic rifted margins. One of Memorial Universitys faculty members, Dr. Rick Hiscott is the chair of the Canada ODP Council and a scientist on Leg 210.

The voyage is devoted to drilling into the ocean floor about 360 miles east of Newfoundland and to recovering cores of deeply buried sediments for scientific study.

The prime site for this project (Site 1276) is in a water depth of 4560 meters. Cores recovered extend to depths of more than 1500 meters below the seafloor. The scientific program is designed to study the geological and oceanographic history of this ocean basin, which began more than 130 million years ago when the Grand Banks and the Iberia peninsula were part of a single continent. These landmasses subsequently rifted apart, forming a gateway to oceans that opened progressively northward to the Arctic Ocean. The rocks recovered at Site 1276 are the deep-water equivalents of sedimentary deposits in the Jeanne dArc and other rift basins on the Grand Banks.

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