The Fram Strait between Svalbard and Greenland is the only deep water connection between the Arctic Ocean and the northern North Atlantic. A detailed understanding of this region, however, is difficult due to the absence of clear marine magnetic and other geophysical data. Within the last years the Alfred-Wegener-Institute conducted several geophysical data sets in order to solve some of the remaining problems in the Fram Strait and the adjacent basins (Molloy and Boreas Basin).In this contribution we present a new aeromagnetic data grid, new seismic reflection data and existing gravimetric data that provide new insights into the geodynamic evolution of this area. These data are the basis for estimations of initial opening scenarios, and palaeobathymetric maps. Seismic reflection lines crossing the entire Molloy and Boreas basins show rough basement topography and a deep axial valley. Roughness calculations also indicate ultra-slow spreading rates in the whole area. Using the age information of the aeromagnetic data, the thermal subsidence for oceanic crust corrected for the sediment load fits the observed basement depth reasonably well in the Boreas and Molloy basins. A compilation of additional seismic lines in this area contributes the basement depth and sediment distribution. Combining all information of the seismic data, the aeromagnetic data and the gravity data, a model of the evolution of the northern North Atlantic is created. The latest results of this palaeobathymetric study for the Fram Strait and its subsequent basins are shown.
Helmholtz Research Programs > MARCOPOLI (2004-2008) > MAR2-Palaeo Climate Mechanisms and Variability