Ferromanganese Deposits of the South Pacific Ocean, Drake Passage, and Scotia Sea

  1. Joseph L. Reid
  1. H. G. Goodell,
  2. M. A. Meylan and
  3. B. Grant

Published Online: 21 MAR 2013

DOI: 10.1029/AR015p0027

Antarctic Oceanology I

Antarctic Oceanology I

How to Cite

Goodell, H. G., Meylan, M. A. and Grant, B. (1971) Ferromanganese Deposits of the South Pacific Ocean, Drake Passage, and Scotia Sea, in Antarctic Oceanology I (ed J. L. Reid), American Geophysical Union, Washington, D. C.. doi: 10.1029/AR015p0027

Author Information

  1. Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida 32306

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 21 MAR 2013
  2. Published Print: 1 JAN 1971

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780875901152

Online ISBN: 9781118664438



  • Bathymetry and circulation;
  • Ferromanganese concretions;
  • Morphology and mineralogy;
  • Radioelements;
  • Rates of deposition;
  • Sediment-water system


Bottom photography, dredging, and coring by the Eltanin have established the distribution, nature, and chemical and mineralogical character of fields of ferromanganese concretions in the South Pacific Ocean, Drake Passage, and the Scotia Sea (Southern Ocean). A continuous belt of ferromanganese concretions lies beneath the Antarctic Convergence at 60°S latitude on all types of sediment and in all depths of water. This field, and others north and south of it, is associated with volcanics and evidence of bottom currents. Concretion morphology is dependent on the number and arrangement of nucleation sites, proximity to element sources, and currents. The principal Mn mineral is todorokite with minor birnessite; Fe occurs in large part as amorphous or cryptocrystalline hydrated ferric oxide with Ininor goethite and maghemite. Concretion-incorporated detrital minerals that increase in importance toward Antarctica consist principally of quartz, feldspar, ferromagnesian, and clay minerals. A Mn- (chalcophile) related suite of elements consisting of Ni, Mo, Cu, Co, and Sn delineates a geochemical province in the Southwest Pacific Basin. An Fe-(lithophile) related suite of elements that consists of Ti, V, Zn, Co, Ba, and Sr dominates the Albatross Cordillera (Pacific-Antarctic Ridge). Both suites are found along the Albatross Cordillera and Chile Rise. Except for Zr, which is clearly derived from the Antarctic Continent, the elements comprising the concretions are derived principally from volcanic sources and moved by bottom currents, coprecipitating en route. Their formation probably exceeds 60 mm per 1000 yr.