Apply to Sail: Expedition 390/393 South Atlantic Transect



SPECIAL CALL: The U.S. Science Support Program is issuing a special call for scientists with expertise in sedimentology to apply for Expedition 393 (6 Apr-6Jun 2021). The deadline to apply for this special call is January 3, 2020 at 11:59 PM EST.



The International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) is now accepting applications for scientific participants on Expeditions 390 and 393 South Atlantic Transect 1 and 2, aboard the JOIDES Resolution. To learn more about the scientific objectives of the expedition and how to apply to sail, please join us for a web-based seminar on Thursday, 18 July 2019 at 12:00 PM EDT – click here to register.


South Atlantic Transect Expeditions 390 and 393 are a multidisciplinary and joint scientific ocean drilling project that aims to recover complete sedimentary sections and ~200 m of oceanic crust along a crustal age transect at ~31°S across the South Atlantic Ocean to: (1) investigate the history of low-temperature hydrothermal interactions between the aging ocean crust and the evolving South Atlantic Ocean; (2) quantify past hydrothermal contributions to global geochemical cycles; (3) investigate sediment and basement-hosted microbial community variation with substrate composition and age in the low energy South Atlantic Gyre subseafloor biosphere; and (4) investigate the responses of Atlantic Ocean circulation patterns and the Earth’s climate system to rapid climate change, including elevated CO2 during the Cenozoic.


The South Atlantic Transect expeditions will target six primary sites on 7, 15, 31, 48, and 63 Ma ocean crust. The proposed transect, which follows a Mid-Atlantic Ridge crustal flow-line, will fill critical gaps in our sampling of intact in-situ ocean crust with regards to crustal age, spreading rate, and sediment thickness. The transect traverses the previously unexplored sediment- and basalt-hosted deep biosphere beneath the South Atlantic gyre, samples of which are essential to refine global biomass estimates and investigate microbial ecosystems’ responses to variable conditions in a low energy gyre and aging ocean crust. The transect is located near World Ocean Circulation Experiment line A10, providing access to records of carbonate chemistry and deep-water mass properties across the western South Atlantic through key Cenozoic intervals of elevated atmospheric CO2 and rapid climate change. Reconstruction of the history of the deep western boundary current and deep-water formation in the Atlantic basins will yield crucial data to test hypotheses regarding the role of evolving thermohaline circulation patterns in climate change, and the effects of tectonic gateways and climate on ocean acidification.


The expeditions will take place from 5 October to 5 December 2020 (Expedition 390) and 6 April to 6 June 2021 (Expedition 393).


This is a special call for scientists with expertise in sedimentology to apply for Expedition 393 only. U.S.-affiliated scientists interested in responding to the special call should apply to sail through the U.S. Science Support Program – click here to review the application process and link to the USSSP Application Portal. The deadline to apply is January 3, 2020.


For questions, please email