Dr. John Hall and Early Arctic Ocean Bottom Photos

 In 1957, the first photos of the Arctic Ocean bottom were taken from a scientific outpost, Drifting Station Alpha, and were published by Hunkins et.al. in 1960.  Dr. John Hall was on another drifting scientific station, T-3 (also known as Fletcher’s Ice Island) several years (1966, 1967, 1968).  The outpost was named T-3 because it was the third largest radar target seen by weather B-29′s in the Arctic during the late 1940′s into the early 1950′s.  The scientific outpost drifted freely on ice in the Arctic Ocean for many years.  As a graduate student working on his dissertation, Dr. Hall and other scientists took photographs and piston cores from T-3.  The photographs below were taken in the 1960′s near the area where the Healy is located this summer.  

The photographs revealed tracks and trails of worms and other sea life, brittle stars, and, a rare crinoid attached to manganese nodules.  Although crinoids were abundant in the ocean millions of years ago during the Paleozoic Era, there are only a few species living today.  According to Arctic Ocean biodiversity (ArcOD),  four species of crinoids are known to live in the Arctic Ocean. 

Tracks and trails on the Arctic Ocean bottom, 1963. Photograph courtesy of John Hall.

A rare crinoid attached to manganese nodules on the Arctic Ocean Bottom, 1967. Photograph courtesy of John Hall.

Track line of the Healy in Dark Red and Track Line of T-3 is the bright red squiggly line.

Map of the Track line of the Healy (dark red) with the Track line of T-3 (bright red). The photo of the manganese nodules was East of the ship on the photo.

Brittle stars on the Arctic Ocean Bottom, 1967. Photograph courtesy of John Hall.

Map of Healy (dark red) track line and T-3 (bright red) track line.

Dr. John Hall photograph courtesy of Kelley Brumley

Dr. John K. Hall is retired from the Geological Survey of Israel. He remains interested in the Arctic and is the proud owner of the research hovercraft R/H Sabvabaa which is on its way back from the Gakkel Ridge at this moment,having just passed 84N. He is also working with Dale Chayes and others to develop the first bathymetric buoys that can be employed in the Arctic and other oceans.

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