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Dhofar Adventure and Exploration Team finds Dhalkut underwater thermal vents

18 Dec 2023 Dhofar Adventure and Exploration Team finds Dhalkut underwater thermal vents By MOHAMMED TAHA

Muscat – The Dhofar Adventure and Exploration Team, in collaboration with Environment Authority (EA) and Bluefin Diving Centre, embarked on a mission recently to unravel the enigma of circular currents in the Arabian Sea off Dhalkut in Dhofar governorate. 

Abdul Hakim Amer al Ma’ashani, leader of the team, informed of the findings from their dives conducted from November 21 to November 23 for a coral reef cleaning campaign organised by EA.

Ma’ashani explained that the team’s dives led to the source of hot water springs near Dhalkut beach, known locally as ‘Hamwa Yadwar’. Shrouded in mystery and reputed to be deadly, these circular currents have been a subject of curiosity for centuries.

“The team’s divers reached the source to find hot water springs at a depth of 18m, approximately 5,850m from the port of Dhalkut and 290m from the coast.”

The divers discovered multiple thermal vents where the water temperature rose to near-boiling levels. “Samples of water and rocks were collected for further analysis by specialists,” informed Ma’ashani. 

According to geologist Dr Ali Faraj al Kathiri, hot springs are typically formed by magma heating water beneath the Earth’s surface, which then flow out as fountains. 

“However,” he pointed out, “the Dhalkut hot springs might have a different origin. The presence of deep faults allows water to descend to hot rock reservoirs deep underground, where it gets heated and rises back to the surface as hot springs or steam. This theory aligns with Dhalkut’s geological features, particularly the convergence of three faults near the documented hot springs area.”

The findings of Dhofar Adventure and Exploration Team not only demystify the circular currents but also contribute significantly to the understanding of the region’s geothermal activity. These findings highlight the need for further research and exploration in the area, promising exciting scope of study of geothermal phenomena.

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