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On the beginnings of palaeoceanography: Foraminifera, pioneers and the Albatross Expedition

By
Wolfgang H. Berger
Wolfgang H. Berger
Geosciences Research Division, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego, California 92093–0244, USA (e-mail: wberger@ucsd.edu)
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Published:
January 01, 2013

Abstract

The field of studies labelled palaeoceanography integrates research on foraminifers and other microfossils within their environment on deep-sea sediments raised by cores taken from ships. The first large-scale project deserving the label was the Swedish Deep-Sea Expedition, which used the sailing vessel Albatross and the then newly developed Kullenberg coring machine to raise hundreds of long cores from around the world during 1947–1948. Thus, just as the Challenger Expedition (1872–1876) serves as a marker point for the beginnings of oceanography, the Albatross represents the beginnings of palaeoceanography. The unique defining element – the link of micropalaeontology to ocean circulation and climate – came to dominate discussions in the 1950s with the reports by Gustaf Arrhenius and Cesare Emiliani. At the same time, important steps in the evolution of the new field depended on the expansion of the inventory of cores by major oceanographic institutions (especially Lamont Geological Observatory in Palisades, New York), and on the introduction of new dating methods. Subsequently, the field benefited from the increased use of various statistical techniques, as well as of numerical modelling, all of which profited greatly from the rapid growth of computing power.

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Contents

The Micropalaeontological Society, Special Publications

Landmarks in Foraminiferal Micropalaeontology: History and Development

A. J. Bowden
A. J. Bowden
National Museums Liverpool, UK
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F. J. Gregory
F. J. Gregory
PetroStrat Ltd, UK
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A. S. Henderson
A. S. Henderson
Robertson (UK) Ltd, UK
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Geological Society of London
Volume
6
ISBN electronic:
9781862396517
Publication date:
January 01, 2013

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