Abstract

Research on sedimentogenesis and geochemistry of the Arctic Ocean over the last 10–20 years has allowed direct (in situ) studies to be made for all types of sedimentary matter that mix together and form the bottom deposit. Contrary to common knowledge, river sediment turned out to be insignificant; instead, more important is the dispersed sedimentary matter (suspension) from the atmosphere, cryosphere (snow, ice), marine water, riverine water, biosphere (plankton and benthos), and anthroposphere (all types of pollutants), supplemented by the endogenic mater supplied from spreading zone of the Gakkel Ridge. The mixture is dominated by sedimentary material discharged from sea ice; hence, this type of sedimentogenesis is referred to as the ice-rafted marine sedimentogenesis.

Application of new methods and tools (including satellites, remote hydrooptical, hydrophysical, and hydroacoustic survey, etc.) and in situ analyses produced measurements of content, composition, and characteristics of all types of dispersed sedimentary matter, its fluxes (mg/m2/year), vectors of movement, and rates for different segments of the Arctic Ocean; observations were carried out continuously on different time scale, from hours–days to seasons and dozens of years. It is a new approach to the study of sedimentary matter that opens up new possibility for a 4D quantitative sedimentology.

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