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Science Briefing

Continental shelf may reach farther

September 12, 2009|Times Wire Reports

For the last two months, ships from the U.S. and Canada have ventured north in icy areas of the Arctic to find how far the continental shelf extends. The farther out the shelf, the more ocean floor -- thought to be rich with oil and gas -- the countries could claim.

Early indications show more sediment buildup on the northern edges, hinting that the shelf -- and thus the countries' borders -- extend farther. The effort also found a mountain, about 700 miles from Alaska, that's almost 24 miles wide.

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