Laurentian fan

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The Laurentian fan or 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 fan is a product of glaciation and water currents from the Saint Lawrence River.[2] It is part of the Laurentian cone region, bound by the Laurentian Channel and the Sohm Abyssal Plain.

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

The approximate coordinates are 43°40′N 56°10′W / 43.667°N 56.167°W / 43.667; -56.167Coordinates: 43°40′N 56°10′W / 43.667°N 56.167°W / 43.667; -56.167.

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.
  • The Laurentian Abyss was mentioned in the conclusion 2007 film Transformers as the location where the remains of the dead Decepticons were to be dumped. It was incorrectly described as "the deepest part of our planet" with a depth of 7 miles, which is actually the depth of the Mariana Trench.

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.