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  • MICROFOSSILS the oceans storytellers

    Copyright 2008 Consortium for Ocean Leadership

    Note about size: These images have been enlarged using various magnifications. The microfos-sils range in actual size from less than 10 microns up to 2 millimeters. 1 micron = 1 x 10-6 meters.

  • Teaching for Science Learning for LifeTM | www.oceanleadership.orgNannofossils Reveal Seafloor Spreading Truth!

    2

    Intr

    od

    uct

    ion

    fo

    r Te

    ach

    erB

    ackg

    rou

    nd

    T

    he g

    oal o

    f the

    Dee

    p S

    ea D

    rillin

    g P

    roje

    ct

    (DS

    DP

    ) w

    as to

    inve

    stig

    ate

    the

    sedi

    men

    ts

    and

    rock

    s be

    neat

    h th

    e de

    ep o

    cean

    s by

    dr

    illin

    g an

    d co

    ring.

    The

    dat

    a fe

    atur

    ed

    in th

    is e

    xerc

    ise

    wer

    e ta

    ken

    from

    cor

    es

    colle

    cted

    by

    the

    Glo

    mar

    Cha

    lleng

    er d

    rill

    ship

    , at s

    even

    site

    s ea

    st a

    nd w

    est o

    f the

    M

    id-A

    tlant

    ic R

    idge

    dur

    ing

    DS

    DP

    Leg

    3, i

    n la

    te 1

    968

    (see

    Fig

    ure

    2). T

    he h

    oles

    wer

    e dr

    illed

    in th

    e S

    outh

    Atla

    ntic

    bet

    wee

    n R

    io

    de J

    anei

    ro, B

    razi

    l and

    Dak

    ar, S

    eneg

    al.

    The

    age

    of t

    he c

    onta

    ct b

    etw

    een

    the

    sedi

    men

    t and

    the

    basa

    lt of

    the

    ocea

    n flo

    or w

    as d

    eter

    min

    ed b

    y id

    entif

    ying

    the

    nann

    ofos

    sils

    foun

    d at

    eac

    h co

    ntac

    t.

    Ob

    ject

    ives

    Stu

    dent

    s w

    ill a

    naly

    ze r

    eal d

    ata

    co

    llect

    ed fr

    om th

    e D

    eep

    Sea

    Dril

    ling

    Pro

    ject

    to d

    isco

    ver

    evid

    ence

    of

    seafl

    oor

    spre

    adin

    g.

    Teaching for Science Learning for LifeTM | www.oceanleadership.orgSecrets of the Sediments - Student Guide

    2

    Teaching for Science Learning for LifeTM | www.deepearthacademy.org

    Teaching for Science Learning for LifeTM | www.deepearthacademy.org

    Teaching for Science Learning for LifeTM | www.oceanleadership.orgSmall Creatures, Big Science

    2

    Teaching for Science Learning for LifeTM | www.deepearthacademy.org

    Secr

    ets o

    f the

    Sed

    imen

    ts - S

    tude

    nt G

    uide

    Using

    Mar

    ine S

    edim

    ents

    to S

    tudy

    Glob

    al Cl

    imat

    e Cha

    nge

    Bef

    ore

    Yo

    u B

    egin

    1. T

    hink

    abo

    ut th

    ese

    ques

    tions

    and

    re

    cord

    you

    r an

    swer

    s on

    you

    r ow

    n pa

    per

    or

    on th

    e ba

    ck o

    f thi

    s pa

    ge.

    a. W

    hat i

    s cl

    imat

    e?

    b. H

    ow w

    ould

    you

    des

    crib

    e th

    e cl

    imat

    e in

    yo

    ur c

    ity, t

    own

    or v

    illag

    e?

    c. D

    oes

    clim

    ate

    have

    any

    dire

    ct e

    ffect

    s on

    yo

    ur li

    fe?

    Doe

    s cl

    imat

    e ch

    ange

    ? Ta

    lk to

    yo

    ur p

    aren

    ts a

    nd g

    rand

    pare

    nts

    abou

    t any

    cl

    imat

    e ch

    ange

    s th

    ey r

    ecal

    l.

    2. B

    rain

    stor

    m a

    nd r

    ecor

    d so

    me

    idea

    s fo

    r th

    is e

    ssen

    tial q

    uest

    ion:

    a.

    How

    can

    we

    stud

    y gl

    obal

    clim

    ate

    chan

    ges?

    b. W

    hat p

    iece

    s of

    evi

    denc

    e ca

    n w

    e lo

    ok

    for

    to s

    ee h

    ow th

    e E

    arth

    s c

    limat

    e ha

    s ch

    ange

    d ov

    er th

    e pl

    anet

    s lo

    ng h

    isto

    ry?

    Bac

    kgro

    un

    dT

    he J

    OID

    ES

    Res

    olut

    ion

    (JR

    ) is

    a s

    hip

    that

    trav

    els

    the

    wor

    ld c

    orin

    g ro

    ck a

    nd

    sedi

    men

    ts fr

    om th

    e bo

    ttom

    of t

    he o

    cean

    . W

    hen

    sedi

    men

    t cor

    es a

    re r

    emov

    ed fr

    om

    the

    ocea

    n flo

    or, t

    hey

    unde

    rgo

    a va

    riety

    of

    proc

    esse

    s in

    clud

    ing

    visu

    al d

    escr

    iptio

    ns,

    stud

    ies

    of th

    e m

    icro

    foss

    ils, a

    naly

    sis

    for

    pale

    omag

    netis

    m, d

    eter

    min

    atio

    n of

    se

    dim

    enta

    tion

    rate

    s, a

    nd c

    hem

    ical

    stu

    dies

    of

    the

    sedi

    men

    ts in

    clud

    ing

    stab

    le o

    xyge

    n is

    otop

    es a

    nd c

    arbo

    nate

    s.

    Ob

    ject

    ives

    Dur

    ing

    this

    act

    ivity

    , you

    will

    gra

    ph a

    nd

    anal

    yze

    data

    from

    sed

    imen

    ts c

    olle

    cted

    off

    the

    coas

    t of S

    anta

    Bar

    bara

    , Cal

    iforn

    ia to

    de

    term

    ine

    whe

    ther

    this

    info

    rmat

    ion

    can

    be

    used

    to s

    tudy

    his

    toric

    al c

    limat

    e ch

    ange

    .

    Vo

    cab

    ula

    ryst

    able

    isot

    ope

    sedi

    men

    t co

    re

    m

    icro

    foss

    il

    Mat

    eria

    ls1.

    Gra

    ph p

    aper

    2. R

    uler

    s

    Act

    ivit

    ies

    1. I

    soto

    pes

    are

    atom

    s w

    ith th

    e sa

    me

    num

    ber

    of p

    roto

    ns, b

    ut d

    iffer

    ent n

    umbe

    rs

    of n

    eutr

    ons;

    the

    mor

    e ne

    utro

    ns, t

    he

    heav

    ier

    the

    isot

    ope.

    Uns

    tabl

    e is

    otop

    es,

    like

    uran

    ium

    , dec

    ay o

    ver

    time

    and

    geol

    ogis

    ts c

    an u

    se th

    em fo

    r ag

    e de

    term

    inat

    ion

    and

    datin

    g. S

    tabl

    e is

    otop

    es

    do n

    ot d

    ecay

    and

    can

    ther

    efor

    e pr

    ovid

    e in

    dire

    ct r

    ecor

    ds o

    r pr

    oxie

    s of

    pas

    t clim

    ate

    chan

    ge. O

    xyge

    n oc

    curs

    in th

    ree

    stab

    le

    isot

    opes

    : oxy

    gen-

    16 (

    16O

    ), o

    xyge

    n-17

    (1

    7 O),

    and

    oxy

    gen-

    18 (

    18O

    ). W

    hich

    isot

    ope

    is h

    eavi

    er?

    2. W

    ater

    s c

    hem

    ical

    com

    posi

    tion

    is H

    2O.

    The

    oxy

    gen

    in w

    ater

    is u

    sual

    ly 1

    6 O b

    ut

    som

    etim

    es 1

    8 O. 1

    7 O is

    ver

    y ra

    re. I

    n te

    rms

    of th

    e hy

    drol

    ogic

    al c

    ycle

    and

    eva

    pora

    tion,

    w

    hich

    oxy

    gen

    isot

    ope

    wou

    ld e

    vapo

    rate

    fir

    st?

    Why

    ?

    3. C

    alca

    reou

    s m

    icro

    foss

    ils u

    se o

    xyge

    n fr

    om th

    e w

    ater

    as

    one

    com

    pone

    nt o

    f th

    eir

    carb

    onat

    e (C

    aCO

    3) s

    hells

    , and

    are

    a

    good

    indi

    cato

    r of

    the

    oxyg

    en c

    hem

    istr

    y of

    the

    wat

    er w

    hen

    they

    wer

    e al

    ive.

    Tab

    le

    1 sh

    ows

    the

    18O

    :16 O

    rat

    ios

    and

    the

    ages

    of

    mar

    ine

    mic

    rofo

    ssils

    foun

    d in

    the

    San

    ta

    Bar

    bara

    sed

    imen

    t cor

    e. P

    lot t

    he 1

    8 O:1

    6 O

    ratio

    vs.

    sed

    imen

    t age

    and

    con

    nect

    the

    poin

    ts o

    n a

    shee

    t of g

    raph

    pap

    er.

    4. A

    naly

    sis

    a. L

    ook

    at th

    e gr

    aph

    and

    desc

    ribe

    wha

    t y