Researchers at an Aberdeen university have used the latest imaging technology and techniques to reveal a hidden underwater volcanic landscape.
University of Aberdeen researchers discovered the “Tolkienesque” landscape deep beneath the sea off southern Australia.
A team made up of researchers from the University of Adelaide, University of Aberdeen and Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) used newly acquired 3D seismic reflection data to map the landscape, which is buried deep underneath sediment on the sea floor.
They found 26 ancient, buried lava flows measuring up to 34km in length and 15km wide, along with ancient volcanoes.
These were created as a result of volcanic eruptions that took place under the sea around 35 million years ago. The data is now being used to improve understanding of how volcanoes evolve when they erupt underwater.