Millard Coffin

Millard Coffin
University of Tasmania · Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies (IMAS)

PhD

About

308
Publications
43,546
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Introduction
Skills and Expertise
Additional affiliations
September 2001 - December 2007
The University of Tokyo
Position
  • Professor (Full)

Publications

Publications (308)
Article
Our crew braved rough Southern Ocean seas, endured pandemic precautions, and adapted plans on the fly for the chance to observe a possible subduction zone in the making below the Macquarie Ridge.
Article
Full-text available
Abstract Bubble emission mechanisms from submerged large igneous provinces remains enigmatic. The Kerguelen Plateau, a large igneous province in the southern Indian Ocean, has a long sustained history of active volcanism and glacial/interglacial cycles of sedimentation, both of which may cause seafloor bubble production. We present the results of h...
Chapter
The Indian Ocean contains ~ 2000 islands (sensu lato) of diverse origins, sizes, topographies, and geologies. Ranging from the equator to subpolar regions, some have a continental origin, some are oceanic, and the origin of many is enigmatic. Sizes span a range from < 1 to > 7000 km², and elevations vary from sea level to 3070 m. The vast majority...
Article
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Australian–New Zealand IODP Consortium Ocean Planet Workshop; Canberra, Australia, 14–16 April 2019
Article
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An International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) workshop was held at Sydney University, Australia, from 13 to 16 June 2017 and was attended by 97 scientists from 12 countries. The aim of the workshop was to investigate future drilling opportunities in the eastern Indian Ocean, southwestern Pacific Ocean, and the Indian and Pacific sectors of the So...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
An International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) workshop was held at Sydney University, Australia, from 13 to 16 June 2017 and was attended by 97 scientists from 12 countries. The aim of the workshop was to investigate future drilling opportunities in the eastern Indian Ocean, southwestern Pacific Ocean, and the Indian and Pacific sectors of the So...
Article
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A compilation of foraminiferal stable isotope measurements from southern high latitude (SHL) deep-sea sites provides a novel perspective important for understanding Earth's paleotemperature and paleoceanographic changes across the rise and fall of the Cretaceous Hot Greenhouse climate and the subsequent Paleogene climatic optimum. Both new and prev...
Article
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A high-resolution multibeam echosounder (MBES) dataset covering over 279,000 km² was acquired in the southeastern Indian Ocean to assist the search for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 (MH370) that disappeared on 8 March 2014. The data provided an essential geospatial framework for the search and is the first large-scale coverage of MBES data in this r...
Article
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Volcanism associated with the Kerguelen Large Igneous Province is found scattered in southwestern Australia (the ~136 to ~130 Ma Bunbury Basalts, and ~124 Ma Wallaby Plateau), India (~118 Ma Rajmahal Traps and Cona Basalts), and Tibet (the ~132 Ma Comei basalts), but apart from the ~70,000 km2 Wallaby Plateau, these examples are spatially minor. He...
Conference Paper
McDonald Islands, located in the southern Indian Ocean atop the submarine Kerguelen Plateau, were discovered in 1854 ~43 km west of Heard Island. They originally comprised three islands: McDonald Island, Meyer Rock, and Flat Island (Stephenson et al 2005). In 1980, the sole geological expedition to McDonald Islands collected phonolitic rocks (Clark...
Article
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Ontong Java and Nukumanu atolls sit atop Earth's largest oceanic plateau – the Ontong Java Plateau – in the western equatorial Pacific Ocean. In 2014, scientists aboard the Schmidt Ocean Institute's RV Falkor mapped the seafloor surrounding Ontong Java Atoll (Solomon Islands) and Nukumanu Atoll (Papua New Guinea) for the first time using multibeam...
Article
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A rich trove of marine geophysical data acquired in the search for missing flight MH370 is yielding knowledge of ocean floor processes at a level of detail rare in the deep ocean. https://doi.org/10.1029/2017EO069015
Article
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We report new age determinations and compositions for rocks from 18 dredge hauls collected from eight submarine areas across Central Kerguelen Plateau (CKP). Sea knolls and volcanic fields with multiple small cones were targeted over a ∼125 000 km² region that includes Heard and McDonald Islands. Large early Miocene (22–16 Ma) sea knolls rise from...
Chapter
Full-text available
Definition Intraplate magmatism constitutes igneous activity distal from the boundaries of the tectonic plates and is thus considered to be unrelated to the processes of seafloor spreading, subduction, and transform faulting.
Technical Report
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The Strategic Marine Alliance for Research, Teaching and Training (SMART2) is a contemporary, cross-institutional endeavour to develop and establish a national, postgraduate level, sea-going training programme. The goals are to provide Australian marine postgraduate students with relevant experience and training on the Marine National Facility RV I...
Technical Report
The Full document is available directly from Macquarie University ResearchOnline: http://hdl.handle.net/1959.14/346971. The Executive Summary can be downloaded from Research gate (DOI: 10.13140/RG.2.1.3737.8081)
Article
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The Manihiki Plateau in the western equatorial Pacifi c Ocean is a Cretaceous Large Igneous Province. Several studies have proposed that the Manihiki Plateau was formed by the same mantle plume that formed the Ontong Java and Hikurangi plateaus ca. 125 Ma. Recent multibeam bathymetric surveys of the Manihiki Plateau reveal the morphology of the Dan...
Research Proposal
Full-text available
The unique tectonic and paleoceanographic setting of the Naturaliste Plateau (NP) and Mentelle Basin (MB) offers an outstanding opportunity to investigate a range of scientific issues of global importance with particular relevance to climate change. Drilling of volcanic rocks in different parts of NP will provide detailed information on the timing...
Conference Paper
Heard Island, a sub-Antarctic volcanic island in the southern Indian Ocean, is heavily glaciated and subject to high winds, snow, and wet conditions. It is the southernmost subaerial exposure of the Kerguelen Plateau and the source of its magma is believed to be the Kerguelen plume (Weis et al 2002). Volcanic rock on the island overlies Paleogene L...
Article
An international, multidisciplinary community workshop convened to define scientific projects for the next decade of scientific ocean drilling utilizing unique capabilities afforded by the drilling vessel Chikyu (“Earth” in Japanese). The meeting, attended by 397 participants from 21 countries, featured 10 keynote lectures. Participants in working...
Article
The Indian Ocean exerts a fundamental control on the Earth’s climate and hosts a variety of complex tectonic features. It influences the Indian Monsoon and hosts a major part of the thermohaline conveyor. It has been over a decade since scientific drilling occurred in the Indian Ocean, and as such there are major gaps in geoscientific understanding...
Article
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No abstract available. doi:10.2204/iodp.sd.14.09.2012
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Australia is an island nation with about two thirds of its jurisdiction underwater. On 25 May 2012, Australia instituted the Seas and Submerged Lands (Limits of Continental Shelf) Proclamation 2012, confirming areas of seabed where Australia has exclusive rights to explore and exploit marine resources. This proclamation follows recommendations by t...
Article
Oceanic plateaus result from fundamental processes in the Earth's interior, and have been implicated as instigators of major worldwide environmental changes. Although the plate tectonics paradigm successfully explains volcanic activity on the Earth's surface associated with seafloor spreading and plate subduction, it does not elucidate the massive...
Article
The Ontong Java Plateau (OJP) is one of the largest oceanic plateaus on earth, outlined by 4000-m depth contours (Mahoney et al., 2001), which is equivalent to an area one-third of the contiguous United States (Coffin and Eldholm, 1994). The OJP is believed to have triggered oceanic anoxic event (OAE) 1a, but its formation is not well constrained b...
Article
We present initial isotopic ratios of lead for Early Cretaceous (Barremian–Aptian) sections from Shatsky Rise (Pacific) and Gorgo a Cerbara (Italy). Our Pb isotopic data track an interval representing Oceanic Anoxic Event (OAE)-1a, which is characterized by quasi-global deposition of organic carbon-rich black shale. Pb isotopic compositions of sedi...
Article
We present 40Ar/39Ar age and geochemical (major and trace element and Sr–Nd–Hf–Pb isotope) data from submarine samples recovered from the basement of the Manihiki Plateau during the R/V Sonne research expedition SO193. The samples, predominately tholeiites, with minor occurrences of basaltic andesites and hawaiites, give a mean age of 124.6±1.6Ma f...
Article
Full-text available
The Ontong Java Plateau (OJP; see Figure 1a), in the western equatorial Pacific Ocean, is one of the largest oceanic plateaus on Earth, covering 1.86 million square kilometers---equivalent to roughly one third of the contiguous United States [Coffin and Eldholm, 1994]. This voluminous plateau is thought to have formed about 120 million years ago an...
Data
We present initial isotopic ratios of lead for Early Cretaceous (Barremian-Aptian) sections from Shatsky Rise (Pacific) and Gorgo a Cerbara (Italy). Our Pb isotopic data track an interval representing Oceanic Anoxic Event (OAE)-1a, which is characterized by quasi-global deposition of organic carbon-rich black shale. Pb isotopic compositions of sedi...
Article
The Ontong Java Plateau (OJP) is one of the largest oceanic plateaus and possibly the most voluminous large igneous province (LIP) on Earth, and is thought to have formed by a non-plate tectonic mechanism such as 1) a plume head, 2) a bolide impact, or 3) atypical seafloor spreading. Due to massive magmatism over short durations of geological time,...
Article
The Hikurangi and Manihiki Plateaus, extensively sampled on the SONNE 168 and 193 cruises, have a similar temporal and geochemical evolution. The two plateaus began with a main tholeiitic plateau stage (c. 126-116 Ma) followed by a later (seamount-forming) alkalic stage of volcanism (lasting more than 30 Ma on each plateau). The tholeiitic lavas ha...
Article
The formation of large igneous provinces (LIPs)---continental flood basalts, `volcanic' margins, and oceanic plateaus---may impact the atmosphere, oceans, and biosphere by rapidly releasing huge amounts of particulates, magmatic volatiles (CO2, SO2, Cl, F, etc.), and potentially volatiles (CO2, CH4, SO2, etc.) from intruded sediments (e.g., carbona...
Article
A rich mosaic of disparate crustal types characterizes the Earth beneath the sea, and although `normal' oceanic crust approximately seven kilometers thick is by far the most prevalent, abnormally thick oceanic-type crust of large igneous provinces (LIPs) also forms a significant component of the marine realm. LIPs are massive and rapid crustal empl...
Article
The Ontong Java Plateau (OJP) in the western equatorial Pacific is the largest flood basalt province, or large igneous province (LIP), known in the oceans. Although the bulk of the OJP is believed to have formed in Early Cretaceous time, ca. 122 Ma, ca, 90 Ma basalts have also been recovered from the OJP and obducted OJP sections in the Solomon Isl...
Article
Extensive sampling of the Hikurangi and Manihiki Plateaus, including seamounts on the plateaus, was carried out on the SONNE 168 and 193 cruises. Comparison of age and geochemical data from these plateaus with Ontong Java shows interesting similarities suggesting a similar temporal and geochemical evolution for each of the three plateaus. Each of t...
Article
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The origin of the submarine Naturaliste Plateau off the southwestern coast of Australia is controversial; previous work supports both oceanic and continental affinities for the basement to volcanic and sedimentary sequences. We report the first evidence of reworked Mesoproterozoic (ca. 1230–1190 Ma) continental crust, based on laser ablation–induct...
Article
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Earth’s history has been punctuated over at least the last 3.5 billion years by massive volcanism on a scale unknown in the recent geological past. Largely unknown mechanical and dynamic processes, with unclear relationships to seafloor spreading and subduction, generated voluminous, predominately mafic magmas that were emplaced into the Earth’s li...
Article
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The Early Cretaceous Ontong Java Plateau (OJP) in the western equatorial Pacific, Earth's most voluminous large igneous province (LIP), is characterized by intrabasement seismic reflections. To investigate the nature of such reflections, we have analyzed new and all older multichannel seismic (MCS) reflection data from the OJP using an instantaneou...
Article
Seafloor spreading occurs in two distinct geodynamic environments, major ocean basins and backarc basins. Unusual magma-poor seafloor spreading has been identified at slow- and intermediate-rate spreading centers in major ocean basins, e.g., Mid-Atlantic Ridge, Southwest Indian Ridge, and Australia-Antarctica Discordance. Some of these spreading ce...
Article
A rich mosaic of disparate crustal types characterizes the Earth beneath the sea, and although normal oceanic crust approximately seven kilometers thick is by far the most prevalent, abnormally thick oceanic-type crust of large igneous provinces (LIPs) also forms a significant component of the marine realm. LIPs are massive and rapid crustal emplac...
Article
Full-text available
IODP-MI/JOI Large Igneous Province Workshop; Coleraine, United Kingdom, 22-25 July 2007 Catastrophic massive volcanism and contemporaneous environmental change have punctuated Earth history for at least the past 3.5 billion years. Geodynamic and magmatic processes associated with large igneous province (LIP) formation interact with crustal structur...
Article
Abstract To show the structure of oceanic crust and Moho around the eastern Ogasawara Plateau, we have analyzed industry-standard two-dimensional multichannel seismic reflection data. To obtain improved velocity models, phase information of seismic signals was used for velocity analysis and velocity models for oceanic crust above Moho were determin...
Article
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The rupture of continents and creation of new oceans is a fundamental yet primitively understood aspect of the plate tectonic cycle. Building upon past achievements by ocean drilling and geophysical and geologic studies, we propose “The Continental Breakup and Birth of Oceans Mission (COBBOOM)” as the next major phase of discovery, for which sampli...
Article
Full-text available
Numerous large igneous provinces formed in the Pacific Ocean during Early Cretaceous time, but their origins and relations are poorly understood. We present new geochronological and geochemical data on rocks from the Manihiki Plateau and compare these results to those for other Cretaceous Pacific plateaus. A dredged Manihiki basalt gives an 40Ar-39...
Article
Full-text available
Oceanic Anoxic Events (OAEs) are geological time intervals characterized by extremely high burial rates of organic carbon that led to deposition of organic-rich “black shales” in the global ocean. It has been proposed that oceanic anoxic events are ultimately caused by massive volcanism associated with formation of large igneous provinces (LIPs) be...
Article
The Manihiki Plateau represents a Cretaceous Large Igneous Province (LIP) in the SW-Pacific. In May/June 2007, R/V Sonne cruise SO193 conducted ~4,700 nm of bathymetric mapping in key areas of the Manihiki Plateau region, and the first hard rock sampling of all major geomorphological units of the plateau as well as of seamounts on adjacent oceanic...
Article
Standing several kilometers above surrounding seafloor, the submarine Manihiki Plateau, an oceanic large igneous province (LIP), encompasses ~800,000 km2 of seafloor in the western equatorial Pacific Ocean. Of Early Cretaceous (~120 Ma) age, the plateau comprises three major structural highs. The High Plateau to the east contains several islands, i...
Data
Numerous large igneous provinces formed in the Pacific Ocean during Early Cretaceous time, but their origins and relations are poorly understood. We present new geochronological and geochemical data on rocks from the Manihiki Plateau and compare these results to those for other Cretaceous Pacific plateaus. A dredged Manihiki basalt gives an 40Ar-39...
Article
The Ontong Java Plateau (OJP) in the western equatorial Pacific is the largest flood basalt province, or large igneous province (LIP), known in the oceans. Of controversial origin, the ca. 122 Ma OJP is flanked by ocean basins that are either demonstrably (Nauru and East Mariana) or presumably (Lyra) older, or presumably younger (Stewart and Ellice...
Article
Full-text available
A rich mosaic of disparate crustal types characterizes the Earth beneath the sea. Although “normal” oceanic crust approximately 7-km thick is by far the most prevalent, abnormally thick oceanic-type crust of large igneous provinces (LIPs) also forms a signifi cant component of the marine realm (e.g., Coffi n and Eldholm, 1994; Mahoney and Coffin, 1...
Article
Full-text available
Earth history is punctuated by continents breaking apart and births of oceans, phenomena occurring today in places such as the high Arctic, East Africa/Red Sea, the Gulf of California, and the western Pacific near Papua New Guinea.
Article
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Large igneous provinces (LIPs) constitute voluminous accumulations of predominantly iron- and magnesium-rich rock that are emplaced in a relatively short geological interval of a few million years or less. Formed by processes unexplained to date by the plate tectonics paradigm, LIPs include oceanic plateaus, volcanic divergent margins, and continen...
Article
Full-text available
Imaging structures within oceanic crust and Moho geometry using multichannel seismic reflection data has been difficult because of challenges in determining accurate velocities within oceanic crust. To obtain improved velocity models, we apply seismic attribute analysis to Common Mid Point (CMP) gathers. We calculate the instantaneous phase from th...
Article
The Ontong Java Plateau (OJP) in the western equatorial Pacific is Earth's most voluminous large igneous province (LIP). It encompasses an area of approximately 2.0×106 km2, and its maximum crustal thickness exceeds 30 km. Emplacement of the OJP at approximately 122 Ma represents a significant transfer of mass and energy from the mantle to the crus...
Article
Full-text available
The Mesozoic Nauru Basin in the western Pacific was created by seafloor spreading in late Jurassic and early Cretaceous time, and was subsequently affected by Early Cretaceous flood volcanism approximately contemporaneous with emplacement of the nearby ~120 Ma Ontong Java Plateau (OJP). To investigate structure and stratigraphy of the basin, we com...
Article
The development of faulting and topography resulting from initial convergence within oceanic lithosphere is largely unknown. We explore relationships among convergence, structural development, and topography along ˜1500 km of the submarine Australian-Pacific plate boundary south of New Zealand, the Macquarie Ridge Complex (MRC). Due to the variable...