Mapping bathymetry : From measurement to applications

Sammanfattning: Surface elevation is likely the most fundamental property of our planet. In contrast to land topography, bathymetry, its underwater equivalent, remains uncertain in many parts of the World ocean. Bathymetry is relevant for a wide range of research topics and for a variety of societal needs. Examples, where knowing the exact water depth or the morphology of the seafloor is vital include marine geology, physical oceanography, the propagation of tsunamis and documenting marine habitats. Decisions made at administrative level based on bathymetric data include safety of maritime navigation, spatial planning along the coast, environmental protection and the exploration of the marine resources.This thesis covers different aspects of ocean mapping from the collection of echo sounding data to the application of Digital Bathymetric Models (DBMs) in Quaternary marine geology and physical oceanography. Methods related to DBM compilation are developed, namely a flexible handling and storage solution for heterogeneous sounding data and a method for the interpolation of such data onto a regular lattice. The use of bathymetric data is analyzed in detail for the Baltic Sea. With the wide range of applications found, the needs of the users are varying. However, most applications would benefit from better depth data than what is presently available. Based on glaciogenic landforms found in the Arctic Ocean seafloor morphology, a possible scenario for Quaternary Arctic Ocean glaciation is developed. Our findings suggest large ice shelves around parts of the Arctic Ocean during Marine Isotope Stage 6, 130–200 ka. Steered by bathymetry, deep water from the Amerasian Basin of the Arctic Ocean flows over the central Lomonosov Ridge into the Eurasian Basin. This water mass is traced on its continuing way towards Greenland and the Fram Strait. At the Morris Jesup Rise, bathymetry plays an important role in the partial re-circulation of the water into the Amerasian Basin.