Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary Geologic Mapping

Science Center Objects

These field activity data releases, publications, and maps are part of the combined effort by the U.S. Geological Survey and NOAA’s Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary to map the geologic substrates of Stellwagen Bank and to study the ecology of fish and invertebrate species that inhabit the bank’s sandy substrates off Boston, Massachusetts.

The goal of the USGS is to develop high-resolution (1:25,000) interpretive maps based on seabed sampling and previously-collected multibeam sonar data that show the bank’s surficial geology and seabed sediment dynamics. Cruises were conducted using the Sanctuary's research vessel R/V Auk based in Scituate, Massachusetts. Data was collected to a water depth of approximately 50 meters using the USGS’ customized Van Veen grab sampler (SEABOSS). The sampler was equipped with a video camera and a CTD and was deployed in drift mode to collect sediment for grain-size analysis, video imagery of the seabed, and measurements of water column properties.


SEABed Observation and Sampling System (SeaBOSS) operations were conducted near Stellwagen Bank offshore of Massachusetts in cooperation with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary aboard the sanctuary's research vessel, the R/V Auk. 

(Public domain.)