New depth map of the Arctic Ocean

News | 21-07-2020




An international team of researchers has published the most detailed submarine map of the Artic Ocean. The study, which counts on the participation of the experts Miquel Canals, José Luis Casamor and David Amblàs, from the Consolidated Research Group on Marine Geosciences of the UB, has been published in Nature’s journal Scientific Data.

The map is the 4.0 version of the International Bathymetric Chart of the Arctic Ocean (IBCAO), an initiative that was created in 1997 in Saint Petersburg (Russia) in order to map the depths of the Arctic floors. Published in digital format, the new chart expands up to 19.6% the submarine surface mapped in previous versions. 

Since 2018, the team of the UB has contributed to the 4.0 IBCAO map with data mainly obtained through the multibeam bathymetry in oceanographic campaigns in the Arctic, specially in the western area in the Barents Sea, “a volunteering collaboration to benefit science and knowledge”, as Miquel Canals states. In its different editions, the IBCAO maps received thousands of downloads over the years and are widely used by governments, companies and researchers with scientific interest and activities in the Arctic.

Within the frame of the international effort to study the Arctic marine floors, the Consolidated Research Group on Marine Geosciences of the UB is one of the teams that take part in the Nippon Foundation-GEBCO Seabed 2030, the most ambitious global project to complete a great task in marine geosciences: high-resolution submarine bathymetry in all oceans worldwide.