Dynamics and timing of the Hinlopen/Yermak Megaslide north of Spitsbergen, Arctic Ocean Academic Article uri icon


  • Integrated interpretation of multi-beam bathymetric, sediment-penetrating acoustic (PARASOUND) and seismic data show a multiple slope failure on the northern European continental margin, north of Spitsbergen. The first slide event occurred during MIS 3 around 30cal. ka BP and was characterised by highly dynamic and rapid evacuation of ca. 1250km 3 of sediment from the lower to the upper part of the continental slope. During this event, headwalls up to 1600m high were created and ca. 1150km 3 material from hemi-pelagic sediments and from the lower pre-existing trough mouth fan has been entrained and transported into the semi-enclosed Sophia Basin. This megaslide event was followed by a secondary evacuation of material to the Nansen Basin by funnelling of the debris through the channel between Polarstern Seamount and the adjacent continental slope. The main slide debris is overlain by a set of fining-upward sequences as evidence for the associated suspension cloud and following minor failure events. Subsequent adjustment of the eastern headwalls led to failure of rather soft sediments and creation of smaller debris flows that followed the main slide surficial topography. Discharge of the Hinlopen ice stream during the Last Glacial Maximum and the following deglaciation draped the central headwalls and created a fan deposit of glacigenic debris flows. 2007 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Winkelmann, D., Geissler, W., Schneider, J., & Stein, R.

citation count

  • 30

complete list of authors

  • Winkelmann, Daniel||Geissler, Wolfram||Schneider, Julia||Stein, Ruediger

publication date

  • April 2008