The late Cenozoic stratigraphic record and hiatuses of the northeast Pacific; Results from the Deep Sea Drilling Project
John A. Barron, 1989. "The late Cenozoic stratigraphic record and hiatuses of the northeast Pacific; Results from the Deep Sea Drilling Project", The Eastern Pacific Ocean and Hawaii, E. L. Winterer, Donald M. Hussong, Robert W. Decker
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The northeast Pacific between the equator and 60°N includes equatorial, subtropical, temperate, and subarctic waters (Sverdrup and others, 1946). Within the equatorial Pacific, upwelling is induced by winds and by the interaction of the Equatorial Countercurrent with both the North and South Equatorial Currents. Surface waters are enriched in nutrients, forming the highly fertile equatorial high productivity zone (Wyrtki, 1966; Theyer and others, this volume).
The dominant oceanographic feature of the temperate to subarctic northeastern Pacific is the Subarctic Front, which separates fertile subarctic waters from warmer (>20°C in the summer), less fertile waters of the subtropical gyre. The Subarctic Front is maintained at about 40°N between the eastward-flowing West Wind Drift and North Pacific Current (Dodimead and others, 1963). As the West Wind Drift approaches the North American coast, it is deflected southward to become the California Current (Dodimead and others, 1963). To the north, the Aleutian Current is deflected northward into the Gulf of Alaska to form the counterclockwise Alaska Gyre (Dodimead and others, 1963). The California Current dominates the eastern margin of the northeast Pacific, where it transports cool, fertile waters as far south as the tip of Baja California (23°N) (Sverdrup and others, 1946).
Within the fertile regions of the northeast Pacific, sediment is enriched by the carbonate and siliceous skeletons of foraminifers, nannofossils, diatoms, and radiolarians. Mixed carbonate and siliceous biogenic oozes are found beneath the equatorial high productivity zone, where the Calcite Compensation Depth (CCD) is depressed (van Andel and others, 1975; Theyer and others, this volume).
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This new synthesis includes a section on plate kinematics, documenting the basis for a new interpretation of the magnetic anomaly patterns. It also includes: six chapters on various aspects of tectonics, petrologic characteristics, and hydrothermal processes of active ridges from the Galapagos Rift to the Juan de Fuca Ridge; a section on mid-plate volcanism, including the Hawaii-Emperor chain; five chapters on various aspects of northeastern Pacific sedimentary regimes; and nine chapters on the geology of the Pacific continental margin from the Aleutians to Guatemala, seen from the perspective of marine geology. Three separate oversize plates illustrate the bathymetry of the northeast Pacific; two more on the same base show distribution of sediment samples and types and magnetic anomaly data and tectonic interpretations; and others include a synthesis of the geology and bathymetry of the Hawaiian Islands, details of bathymetry along parts of the East Pacific Rise, and a major seismic profile across the Pacific margin of Guatemala.