Sign up to receive an email update when a new issue of Sound Waves is available.

close window

Link to USGS home page
Sound Waves Monthly Newsletter - Coastal Science and Research News from Across the USGS
Home || Sections: Cover Stories | Fieldwork | Research | Outreach | Meetings | Awards | Staff & Center News | Publications || Archives

 

Publications

Comprehensive Geologic Mapping of the Inner Continental Shelf off the Delmarva Peninsula



in this issue:
 previous story | next story

The USGS has collected about 10,000 kilometers of new geophysical data and 258 seafloor grab samples along with video footage at more than 200 bottom video stations to portray the geology and seafloor characteristics on the inner continental shelf off the Delmarva Peninsula.

The USGS conducted surveys on the inner continental shelf of the Delmarva Peninsula to complement related datasets previously collected in the area by partners NOAA and BOEM.
Above: The USGS conducted surveys on the inner continental shelf of the Delmarva Peninsula (shown in green) to complement related datasets previously collected in the area by partners NOAA and BOEM. The inset map shows location of the study area. Image credit: USGS. [larger version]

Additionally, the USGS has acquired and repurposed existing NOAA hydrographic data and Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) Wind Energy Area geophysical data to optimize the design of this extensive survey to produce one of the most data-rich and aerially extensive (about 5,100 square kilometers) inner continental shelf studies on the U.S. Atlantic Coast.

The Delmarva Peninsula is a 220-kilometer-long headland, spit, and barrier-island complex located off the mid-Atlantic states of Delaware, Maryland, and Virginia that was substantially affected by Hurricane Sandy. In response to Hurricane Sandy, the U.S. Department of the Interior funded an initiative to define the geologic framework of the Delmarva inner continental shelf and its role in coastal-sediment flux and vulnerability through geophysical mapping of its offshore areas. The Delmarva project provides baseline datasets and derivative interpretive maps that offer a geospatial framework for scientific research and provide critical information to planners and decision-makers who oversee the management of resources and mitigation of hazards in the coastal ocean. Bathymetric data are critical for developing surge models, whereas sub-sea floor data inform structural and geologic understanding.

Hill-shaded bathymetric, backscatter, and photographic data collected by NOAA and the USGS
Above: Hill-shaded bathymetric, backscatter, and photographic data collected by NOAA and the USGS. Backscatter data give indications of seafloor character. In general, low-backscatter intensity (blue) corresponds to finer-grained material, whereas high-backscatter intensity (orange) corresponds to coarser substrate. Off the coast of Virginia, zones of low backscatter indicate a smoother, sandy sea floor (inset A), whereas zones of high backscatter often indicate a sea floor with abundant carbonate (shell hash) (inset B). Image credit: Laura Brothers, USGS. [larger version]

These data and mapping products are needed for:

  • Identifying sand and cultural resources;
  • Delineating benthic habitat;
  • Identifying shallow geohazards, such as natural gas and structurally weak sediment units;
  • Evaluating and selecting optimal sites for offshore infrastructure placement; and
  • Locating sites for offshore development and general marine planning.

These datasets will also contribute to improving our ability to identify coastal areas in the region that are most susceptible to effects of large storms and sea-level rise.  

High-Resolution Geophysical data releases:
https://doi.org/10.5066/F7MW2F60
https://doi.org/10.5066/F7P55KK3
https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20141262

Read more about the Delmarva project at https://woodshole.er.usgs.gov/project-pages/delmarva/.

Related Sound Waves Stories
"Team Delmarva" Completes Second Comprehensive Seafloor Mapping off the Delmarva Peninsula
October / November 2015
USGS Scientists Conduct Comprehensive Seafloor Mapping off the Delmarva Peninsula
September / October 2014

Related Websites
Hurricane Sandy Response – Linking the Delmarva Peninsula’s Geologic Framework to Coastal Vulnerability
USGS
High-resolution geophysical data collected along the Delmarva Peninsula 2014, U.S. Geological Survey Field Activity 2014-002-FA
USGS data release
High-resolution geophysical data collected along the Delmarva Peninsula in 2015, U.S. Geological Survey Field Activity 2015-001-FA
USGS data release
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Hydrographic Survey Data Used in a U.S. Geological Survey Regional Geologic Framework Study Along the Delmarva Peninsula
USGS Open-File Report 2014–1262

 previous story | next story

 

print this issue print this issue

in this issue:

Cover Story
Coastal Flooding Could Double in Decades

News Briefs
News Briefs

Field Work
Recent Fieldwork

Meetings
Massachusetts Senate Visits Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center

Awards
Richard Signell Receives the CDI Leadership and Innovation Award

Cassandra Ladino Receives CDI Leadership and Innovation Award

Staff amd Center News
Jenna Hill Joins the Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center

Publications
Comprehensive Geologic Mapping of Delmarva’s Inner Continental Shelf

June/July Publications

Accessibility FOIA Privacy Policies and Notices

Take Pride in America logo USA.gov logo U.S. Department of the Interior | U.S. Geological Survey
URL: http://soundwaves.usgs.gov/2017/07/pubs.html
Page Contact Information: Feedback
Page Last Modified: August 18, 2017 @ 11:58 AM