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Northern Eurasian Margin and Lomonosov Ridge


NEMLOR targets some of the least known, most inaccessible crust on Earth - the Lomonosov Ridge. It seeks to understand the processes controlling the rupturing, rifting and separation of a thin sliver (up to 150 km wide and 1500 km long) of continental crust (Lomonosova) from the Eurasian margin. It concerns the mechanisms behind the development of passive continental margins. NEMLOR has importance for understanding the origin of the Arctic basin, in general, and the occurrence of natural resources, particularly hydrocarbons, in this inhospitable environment beneath the Arctic ice.
NEMLOR science is broken down into seven sub-projects targeting different segments of the high Arctic lithosphere - the Lomonosov Ridge, the Makarov Basin and Alpha-Mendeleev ridges, the Eurasian Basin and the Eurasian continental shelf. The work involves collaborative (east-west), reprocessing and reinterpretation of unpublished and published data on geophysics, geology and geochemistry. Field expeditions, financed by other sources (e.g. Swedish Polar Research Secretariat), will provide new data both geological and geophysical. The prime ambition of this three year project is that the new work will result in a large number of multi-author papers in major international journals, initially on the sub-project targets (first year), subsequently on the integration of closely related sub-projects (second year) and finally, in book form, in a major volume on the evolution of the 'Eurasian high Arctic'. The latter will include syntheses of the lithospheric segments, palinspastic reconstructions for the Mesozoic and Cenozoic, and interpretations of the rifting mechanisms controlling the separation of Lomonosova from Eurasia.
The NEMLOR project is complementary to two other major projects of the coming years. The most ambitious is the ODP (IODP) plan to sample sections through the Lomonosov Ridge in year 2004. This, top priority multi-ship drilling operation, will revolutionise our knowledge about the Earth's crust below the North Pole and relationships of Lomonosova to the Eurasian margin. The other major project is a European Science Foundation EUROCORES Euromargins initiative for the high Arctic, with the participation of ten western European institutes. This Euromargins project has the same ambitions as NEMLOR. With so much of our knowledge of the Eurasian high Arctic based on the experience of our Russian colleagues (e.g. the Lomonosov Ridge was discovered by scientists of the former Soviet Union), NEMLOR is a key element in establishing the scientific platform for the new operations. NEMLOR will contribute significantly to other initiatives, e.g. in the high Arctic geological expeditions, but it is of particular importance for the Lomonosov investigations.
The NEMLOR teams are all highly experienced in high Arctic research. Three, from the west, are from the Euromargins consortium, chosen for their experience in the science, international collaborative operations and INTAS projects. The four Russian organisations, two from the Academy (Moscow and Novosibirsk) and two from the Ministry (St Petersburg-Lomonosov and St Petersburg) are teams from key institutes that have contributed to the Arctic knowledge base over many years. Funds received (20%) for western partners will be largely used to support geoscientists from other Russian institutes whose expertise will benefit the project.

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Uppsala University


Villavagen 16
752 36 Uppsala


Administrative Contact

David G. GEE (Professor)

Participants (6)

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All Russian Institute of Geology and Mineral Resources of the World Ocean


Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources


Institute of the Lithosphere of Marginal Seas


Polar Marine Geological Expedition


United Institute of Geology, Geophysics & Mineralogy


University of Cambridge

United Kingdom

Project information

Grant agreement ID: INTAS-2001-00762

  • Start date

    1 September 2002

  • End date

    31 August 2005

Funded under:


Coordinated by:

Uppsala University