The proposed MagellanPlus workshop IO:DIP "Indian Ocean: Delving Into the Past" intends to gather resources and ideas to identify critical knowledge gaps and discuss the next phase of Indian Ocean scientific drilling. IO:DIP will achieve this by bringing together the "next generation" of Indian Ocean researchers with experienced IODP veterans. With this in mind, we designed IO:DIP as a forum to discuss and push the current state-of-the-art knowledge of Indian Ocean research based on data obtained from DSDP, ODP, and IODP cruises in the region over the last 52 years of ocean drilling.
Our workshop will build on the outcome of several recent Indian Ocean workshops (e.g., the 2020 Chapman Conference "On the Evolution of the Monsoon, Biosphere and Mountain Building in Cenozoic Asia"; the 2018 SPADE Workshop in Goa; the 2017 workshop "Land-Ocean Interactions Across the Indian Ocean: Toward Regional Integration of Recent Drilling Results" in Rhode Island; and the 2017 "Australasian IODP Regional Planning Workshop" in Sydney). Together with results from past IODP Expeditions in the region (EXPs 353 – 356, 359, 360 – 363, 369, and 371), these workshops have highlighted how little we know about the interior of the Indian Ocean basin, its link to the continental systems as well as the long term evolution of intermediate- and deep-water circulation. These currently unresolved factors are directly linked to how Indian Ocean water masses interrelate with the Asian Monsoon system, global climatic and tectonic changes, and thus, fundamentally, with the Indian Oceans connectivity to other basins through the global ocean circulation and the "super gyre" concept (Ridgway and Dunn, 2007; Geophys. Res. Lett., 34), or the contribution and role in AAIW on marine nutrient cycling (Laufkötter and Gruber, 2018; Science, 356). Answering these questions – which are at the core of the new IODP science plan – conclusively, however, is beyond the scope of stand-alone IODP expeditions as it requires a multi-expedition effort that runs complementary to individual expedition goals. IO:DIP will thus be a community-driven initiative to tackle open questions underpinning the Indian Ocean ocean-atmospheric circulation system's history.
Participants will define research questions in the Indian Ocean that contribute to the new IODP science plan's strategic objectives and discuss integrating existing proposal goals by defining research strategies. These strategies provide the basis to elucidate the relationship between climatically (Di Nezio et al., 2018; Sci. Adv., 12; Bialik et al., 2020; Paleoceanogr. Paleoclimatol., 35) and tectonically driven changes (Christensen et al., 2017; Geophys. Res. Lett., 44) in Indian Ocean circulation and on the influence, they have on the marine nutrient cycle (Laufkötter and Gruber, 2018), but also the history of the Indian Ocean oxygen minimum zone (Betzler et al., 2016; Sci. Adv., 6). The strategies defined in IO:DIP will thus link future IODP flagship initiatives 1 (Ground Truthing Future Climate Change) and 4 (Diagnosing Ocean Health). To achieve these goals IO:DIP will build upon recent data and model-driven studies (see above) and the framework of submitted pre-proposals to strategically tackle areas of interest in the Indian Ocean and integrate these with proposals in preparation.
The Indian Ocean has a paucity of high-resolution marine data, hampering our understanding of several critical aspects of the Indian Ocean circulation system, even though it represents an integral part of the global thermohaline circulation. Furthermore, there is no high-resolution data on how the closure and opening of critical oceanic gateways may have affected oceanic and atmospheric (i.e., Monsoonal) circulation patterns. The paucity of Data in the Indian Ocean thus leaves several key questions about the Indian Ocean as of yet unanswered.
IO:DIP aims to define a set of community goals and directions that advance our understanding of the Indian Ocean's role in the global ocean and atmospheric circulation system and as an integral "switchboard" in the late Mesozoic (Cretaceous) to Cenozoic evolution of the earth's climate. These goals will be achieved by the definition of overarching community-driven research goals for the Indian Ocean region. These research goals will directly link to the new IODP Science Plan and serve as a guideline to strategically strengthen forthcoming Indian Ocean drilling proposals. The workshop thus expressly aims to:
The workshop Indian Ocean: Delving Into the Past aims to bring together experienced researchers with Early Career Scientists (ECS) in order to generate networks and teams capable of shaping the future of ship-based Indian Ocean drilling within ECORD member countries, with a focus on Cenozoic to late Mesozoic Indian Ocean paleoceanography, paleoclimatology, sedimentology, stratigraphy. In particular, we hope to gather contributions/ideas as scientific posters to stimulate discussion during IO:DIP. The posters, detailing past achievements and fresh ideas for future Indian Ocean drilling and research, will be displayed for the workshop's duration.
Gerald Auer1, Sietske J. Batenburg2, David De Vleeschouwer3, Anna Joy Drury4, Beth A. Christensen5