Essentials of neighboring disciplines
Unraveling Earth history is a core business of geology. However, understanding cause and effect of past events requires input from other disciplines that can study processes directly and do not have to reconstruct them from incom plete historic records. This introductory chapter summarizes a very limited number of concepts from neighboring disciplines that are relevant in this respect. The list is woefully incomplete. I did not try to simply cover the most im portant concepts; rather, I selected those that are highly rele vant for the topic of this book yet not sufficiently important for geology at large to be routinely covered by introductory texts or courses in geology.
Figures & Tables
Sedimentology and stratigraphy are neighbors yet distinctly separate entities within the earth sciences. Sedimentology searches for the common traits of sedimentary rocks regardless of age as it reconstructs environments and processes of deposition and erosion from the sediment record. Stratigraphy, by contrast, concentrates on changes with time, on measuring time and correlating coeval events. Sequence stratigraphy straddles the boundary between the two fields. This book, dedicated to carbonate rocks, approaches sequence stratigraphy from its sedimentologic background. This book attempts to communicate by combining different specialities and different lines of reasoning, and by searching for principles underlying the bewildering diversity of carbonate rocks. It provides enough general background, in introductory chapters and appendices, to be easily digestible for sedimentologists and stratigraphers as well as earth scientists at large.