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Bay of Bengal seabed to be drilled in Himalaya research(Japan News)

U.S. drillship Joides Resolution

U.S. drillship Joides Resolution

Japan, the United States and other countries will start a large-scale exploration at the bottom of the Bay of Bengal in February to try to find clues behind the origin of the Himalayas, which are often called “the roof of the world.”

The sediment at the bottom of the bay will be examined as it is believed to have flowed into the sea when the mountains were uplifted.

Drillships are set to sail from Singapore soon.

The project is part of the International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) in which 26 nations are participating. The Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC) will take part in the project.

The Himalayas are believed to date back about 50 million years ago, when the Indian subcontinent collided with Eurasia. The collision lifted the land, which created the Himalayan range. It is believed that sediment then poured into the Bay of Bengal and accumulated there.


In this investigation, the project team will drill to depths from 0.3 kilometers to 1.5 kilometers at six points on the sea bottom about 500 kilometers off the east coast of Sri Lanka using a U.S. drillship and other vessels.

The project team consists of about 30 researchers, included researchers and graduate students from Shinshu University and Shimane University.

A JAMSTEC official said: “Sediment about 50 million years old will be extracted from the sea bottom and examined, which should lead to new revelations about the process and period in which the mountain range was created. Fossil remains [to be discovered] should give us an idea of the climate at the time.”Speech

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