Carbonate budget of a cold-water coral carbonate mound: Propeller Mound, Porcupine Seabight
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High resolution studies from the Propeller Mound, a cold-water coral carbonate mound in the NE Atlantic, show that this mound consists of >50% carbonate justifying the name ‘carbonate mound’. Through the last ~300,000 years approximately one third of the carbonate has been contributed by cold-water corals, namely Lophelia pertusa and Madrepora oculata. This coral bound contribution to the carbonate budget of Propeller Mound is probably accompanied by an unknown portion of sediments buffered from suspension by the corals. However, extended hiatuses in Propeller Mound sequences only allow the calculation of a net carbonate accumulation. Thus, net carbonate accumulation for the last 175 kyr accounts for only <0.3 g/cm2/kyr, which is even less than for the off-mound sediments. These data imply that Propeller Mound faces burial by hemipelagic sediments as has happened to numerous buried carbonate mounds found slightly to the north of the investigated area.
We would like to thank M. Segl for stable isotope analyses and V. Liebetrau for U/Th datings. We also acknowledge N. Nowald for his help with the optical analyses. This study was part of the EU FP5-OMARC project ECOMOUND contract no. EVK3-CT-1999-00013 and was supported by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft as part of the DFG Research Center Ocean Margins of the University of Bremen; No. RCOM0283.
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