Laurentian Abyss

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The Laurentian Abyss is an underwater depression off the eastern coast of Canada in the Atlantic Ocean.[1] Not a trench, but more of an "underwater valley", it is estimated to be at most ~19,685 feet (3.7 miles; 6.0 km) in depth. The Laurentian Abyss is a product of glaciation and water currents from the Saint Lawrence River.[2]

The trench is the site of hydrothermal vents with their own sub ecosystems independent of sunlight.[3]

In popular culture[edit]

  • The Laurentian Abyss was the covert rendezvous point for Soviet and American submarines in the 1990 technothriller film The Hunt for Red October. The location, however, was a departure from the original 1984 novel by Tom Clancy.
  • In the 2007 film Transformers, the bodies of Megatron, Blackout and Brawl are dropped into the abyss. It is stated that the pressure and "sub-freezing" temperatures (presumably meaning below the freezing point of pure water at 1 atmosphere of pressure) at this depth would "crush and entomb" the evil alien robot. The film also erroneously states that the abyss is, at 7 miles (11.3 km) below sea level, and that it is the "deepest point on Earth;" the actual deepest point is Challenger Deep, a section of the Mariana Trench in the Pacific Ocean, which has a depth of slightly less than seven miles. In the film's 2009 sequel, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, the remains are found by at the bottom of the Abyss and Megatron is reactivated. Decepticons are also seen climbing up a destroyed ship sinking into the Abyss waters. The film incorrectly states that the abyss is 9,300 fathoms deep, or about 55,800 feet (10.6 miles; 17.0 km) deep.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Geography of the Ocean and the Structure of Planet Water". The Ocean. 2007-05-21. Retrieved 2007-07-10. 
  2. ^ Information gathered via a phone interview with Dr. Norm Catto of Memorial University - August 15, 2008
  3. ^ Dover, C. L. V. (2000). The Ecology of Deep-Sea Hydrothermal Vents. USA: Princeton University Press. p. 352. ISBN 978-0-691-04929-8.