Research Division 4: Dynamics of the Ocean Floor

Overview

The Research Division Dynamics of the Ocean Floor has two Research Units: Magmatic and Hydrothermal Systems and Marine Geodynamics.

The research focus is on the geological-geophysical survey of the ocean floor and the margins of the ocean basins. The core topics include processes of formation, development, alteration and subduction of the oceanic lithosphere and the associated effects on the environment, for example on the climate and the emergence of natural hazards.

These research topics are addressed in three geotectonic areas:

  • Divergent plate margins: Formation of the ocean floor and the ocean basins
  • Convergent plate margins: the subduction engine
  • Tectonic and magmatic processes in the intraplate zone: Conversion of oceanic plates

Significant research emphasis is placed on:

  • Marine natural hazards: earthquakes, volcanoes, slope stability, submarine landslides, and tsunamis
  • Seafloor resources: Gas hydrates and polymetallic massive sulphides
  • Introduction of volatiles into the atmosphere and hydrosphere

RD4 News

Four researchers stand at a table and present the memorial stone for Professor Dr Erwin Suess.
18.06.2024

Last honour in 4819 metres depth

Memorial rock for Professor Dr. Erwin Suess placed in the Aleutian Trench off Alaska

A woman enthusiastically gives a presentation in a conference room
06.06.2024

Possible natural hazards in the Aegean Sea

Researchers discussed recommendations for action and measures