In 1986, three samples of sulfide-rich sediments, impregnated with hydrothermally derived, asphaltic petroleum, were recovered in a dredge and by submersible from Escanaba Trough, the sediment-covered, southern end of the Gorda Ridge spreading axis, offshore northern California. The molecular distributions of hydrocarbons in the two pyrrhotite-rich samples recovered by submersible are similar and compare well the hydrocarbon composition of the first pyrrhotite-rich samples containing petroleum discovered at a 1985 dredge site about 30 km to the south of the site of the submersible dive. In contrast, the 1986 dredge sample, composed of a polymetallic assemblage of sulfides, containes petroleum in which the distribution of hydrocarbons indicates a slightly higher of maturity relative to the other samples. The observation that petroleum of variable composition occurs with metallic sulfides at two and probably more distinct site indicates that petroleum generation may be a common process in the hydrothermally active Escanaba Trough. ?? 1990.
Additional publication details
Hydrocarbon geochemistry of hydrothermally generated petroleum from Escanaba trough, offshore Californi U.S.A.