Seamount and guyot
Winterer, Edward L. Geological Research Division, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, La Jolla, California.
- Additional Readings
A seamount is a mountain that rises from the ocean floor; a submerged flat-topped seamount is termed a guyot. By arbitrary definition, seamounts must be at least 3000 ft (about 900 m) high, but in fact there is a continuum of smaller undersea mounts, down to heights of only about 300 ft (100 m). Some seamounts are high enough temporarily to form oceanic islands, which ultimately subside beneath sea level. There are on the order of 10,000 seamounts in the world ocean, arranged in chains (for example, the Hawaiian chain in the North Pacific) or as isolated features. In some chains, seamounts are packed closely to form ridges (for example, the Walvis Ridge in the South Atlantic). Very large oceanic volcanic constructions, hundreds of kilometers across, are called oceanic plateaus (for example, the Manihiki Plateau in the South Pacific). See also: Oceanic islands
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