Haiti-Drill: an amphibious drilling project workshop

Type Article
Date 2020-12
Language English
Author(s) Aiken Chastity1, Wessels Richard2, Cormier Marie-Hélène3, Klingelhoefer Frauke1, Battani Anne4, Rolandone Frédérique5, Roest Walter1, Boisson Dominique6, Guerrier Kelly6, Momplaisir Roberte6, Ellouz-Zimmerman Nadine7
Affiliation(s) 1 : Institut Français de Recherche pour l'Exploitation de la Mer (IFREMER), Géosciences Marines, Laboratoire Aléas géologiques et Dynamique sédimentaire (LAD), 29280 Plouzané, France
2 : Faculty of Geosciences, Utrecht University, 3512 Utrecht, the Netherlands
3 : Graduate School of Oceanography, University of Rhode Island, Narragansett, 02882 Rhode Island, USA
4 : Isotope Geoscience Unit, SUERC, G75 0QF East Kilbride, UK
5 : CNRS-INSU, ISTeP UMR 7193, Sorbonne Université, 75005 Paris, France
6 : Unité de Recherche en Géosciences, Faculté des Sciences, Université d'Etat d'Haïti, HT 6110 Port-au-Prince, Haiti
7 : French Institute of Petroleum, Energies Nouvelles (IFPEN) – Direction Géosciences, 92500 Rueil-Malmaison, France
Source Scientific Drilling (1816-8957) (Scientific Drilling), 2020-12 , Vol. 28 , P. 49-62
DOI 10.5194/sd-28-49-2020

The Haiti region – bounded by two strike-slip faults expressed both onshore and offshore – offers a unique opportunity for an amphibious drilling project. The east–west (EW)-striking, left lateral strike-slip Oriente–Septentrional fault zone and Enriquillo–Plantain Garden fault zone bounding Haiti have similar slip rates and also define the northern and southern boundaries of the Gonâve Microplate. However, it remains unclear how these fault systems terminate at the eastern boundary of that microplate. From a plate tectonic perspective, the Enriquillo–Plantain Garden fault zone can be expected to act as an inactive fracture zone bounding the Cayman spreading system, but, surprisingly, this fault has been quite active during the last 500 years. Overall, little is understood in terms of past and present seismic and tsunami hazards along the Oriente–Septentrional fault zone and Enriquillo–Plantain Garden fault zone, their relative ages, maturity, lithology, and evolution – not even the origin of fluids escaping through the crust is known. Given these unknowns, the Haiti-Drill workshop was held in May 2019 to further develop an amphibious drilling project in the Haiti region on the basis of preproposals submitted in 2015 and their reviews. The workshop aimed to complete the following four tasks: (1) identify significant research questions; (2) discuss potential drilling scenarios and sites; (3) identify data, analyses, additional experts, and surveys needed; and (4) produce timelines for developing a full proposal. Two key scientific goals have been set, namely to understand the nature of young fault zones and the evolution of transpressional boundaries. Given these goals, drilling targets were then rationalized, creating a focus point for research and/or survey needs prior to drilling. Our most recent efforts are to find collaborators, analyze existing data, and to obtain sources of funding for the survey work that is needed.

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Aiken Chastity, Wessels Richard, Cormier Marie-Hélène, Klingelhoefer Frauke, Battani Anne, Rolandone Frédérique, Roest Walter, Boisson Dominique, Guerrier Kelly, Momplaisir Roberte, Ellouz-Zimmerman Nadine (2020). Haiti-Drill: an amphibious drilling project workshop. Scientific Drilling, 28, 49-62. Publisher's official version : https://doi.org/10.5194/sd-28-49-2020 , Open Access version : https://archimer.ifremer.fr/doc/00662/77402/