Photo album:

Examining the Geology of Ancient Seamounts of the Line Islands North of Kingman Reef

Examining the structure of the seafloor gives us clues into the history of our ocean and planet. While perhaps less colorful than the deep sea life, the geologic shapes of the seafloor are a key part of exploring the deep. Read on to see some of the different landscapes revealed by ROV Hercules during fifteen dives exploring ancient seamounts north of Kingman Reef in the Central Pacific. Diving on these conical (pointy) and guyot (flat-topped) seamounts revealed a wide diversity of lava flow shapes, sizes, and rock types. Geologists continue to use these clues to attempt to understand how these features formed over the last estimated 80-100 million years.

Album created by Science Communication Fellows Daniel Price, Annie Haleck, and Katie Doyle