New Millennium Observatory Project

Project Description
The NeMO Project was conceived as a long-term study of the
interactions between geology, chemistry, and biology on a dynamic part
of the mid-ocean ridge system, using state-of the art technology. The
goal is to make multiple observations at one location over several
years to document changes in interrelated systems. Hence, the need for
a multi-year seafloor observatory.

The site chosen for this observatory effort is called "Axial
Seamount". Axial is an active volcano located on the Juan de Fuca
Ridge, about 250 miles off the coast of Oregon and Washington. The
Juan de Fuca Ridge is a boundary where two of the Earth's tectonic
plates move slowly, but episodically, apart. When the plates move, the
process is accompanied by small earthquakes and, at some times, by
magma intrusions and volcanic eruptions.Axial volcano is seamount at
460N, 1300W, at the intersection of the Juan de Fuca Ridge and the
Cobb seamount chain. It rises 1100 m above the surrounding ocean floor
to a minimum depth of 1400 m below sea level. The Axial volcano was
chosen for the NeMO Project because it is the most volcanically active
site on the Juan de Fuca Ridge.

The NeMO Project also is an opportunity to share this exciting
scientific research with teachers, students, and the general
public. The NeMO cruise will have a teacher at sea this summer and
another teacher working onshore to help make research results
available via the web. Daily updates are planned for the
calendar page describing life at sea and scientific results during the
expedition as well as answers to your questions during the cruise.
A Bathymetric map of the NeMO Observatory at Axial Volcano can be
viewed at:
The Oregon/Washington location map relative to Axial Volcano, NeMO Site
can be viewed at
Refer to the NeMO project web site for additional information.

For more information, contact:

NeMO Project
NOAA/PMEL Vents Program
2115 SE OSU Drive
Newport, OR 97365
Phone: (541)867-0275
FAX: (541)867-3907
Revision_Date: 1999-12-22