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Surficial Geology in Central Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island: Interpretations of Sidescan Sonar and Multibeam Bathymetry


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Figure 1. Map of Narragansett Bay with study area.
Figure 1.Map of Narragansett Bay with study area. Click on figure for larger image.

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) is working cooperatively with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA) to interpret the surficial geology in estuaries along the coast of the northeastern United States. The purpose of our present study is to determine the distributions of surficial sediments and sedimentary environments in two areas of Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island, using sidescan sonar imagery, high-resolution bathymetry, and sediment data. This study provides a framework for future studies on topics such as benthic habitats and oceanographic processes that control the transport and distribution of bottom sediments. This study mapped two separate areas totalling about 33 km² One area lies in West Passage between Plum Point, Quonset Point and Conanicut Island; the other area lies in East Passage around Dyer Island and extends south of Prudence Island (fig. 1).

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