LDEO Research Blogs

  • Off the U.S. Pacific Northwest coast, the 680-mile-long Cascadia subduction zone has produced giant earthquakes and tsunamis like the one that ravaged Japan last year--the most recent, in 1700. These quakes are thought to come every several hundred years; to help understand subduction processes along this zone, scientists at sea and on land are conducting the first-ever imaging of an entire plate-the Juan de Fuca-from the ridge where it is growing, to the trench where is diving under North America.

  • Tiny plants beneath northern sea ice feed all marine life. But warming temperatures and shrinking ice cover are changing the timing of spring phytoplankton blooms and causing some species to thrive while others decline. Aboard the R/V Oscar Dyson, scientists will study this spring’s sea-ice retreat and phytoplankton bloom in the Bering Sea off Alaska. Follow Lamont plankton ecologist Beth Stauffer as she blogs from the field.

  • The El Niño weather pattern in the tropical Pacific influences weather across the planet. As the planet warms, it is unclear if El Niño will grow stronger, bringing more extreme floods and droughts to some regions, or if El Niño will slacken, creating more uniform weather. Scientists aboard the Lamont-Doherty ship, R/V Langseth, will sample ancient sediments from the central Pacific Ocean to see how El Niño and climate varied in the past, and how they may change again in the future.

  • The 2011 Fall Meeting of the American Geophysical Union, from December 5-9 in San Francisco, is the world's largest gathering of earth and space scientists. Scores of researchers from the Earth Institute will give presentations. Read about it here.

  • From a ship in remote Pacific waters, a team of researchers is plumbing the mysteries of what drives and defines the giant tectonic plates that make up the ocean floors and continents. Join Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory seismologist James Gaherty aboard the R/V Marcus G. Langseth, as he and colleagues peer up to 400 kilometers beneath one of earth’s oldest, deepest sections of seafloor.