There are three major turbidite facies associations: slope, deep-sea fan, and basin-plain (Fig. 9-1). These can be subdivided, from generally most “proximal” to most “distal”, into: (1) upper slope, (2) lower slope, (3) submarine canyon, (4) inter-fan channel, (5) middle-fan channel, (6) levee, (7) interchannel, (8) outer-fan lobe, (9) fan-fringe, and (10) basin plain. In addition to these, the channel-mouth bar, crevasse-splay, and basin-plain superbed facies associations can also be defined.
The Mutti and Ricci Lucchi (1972) model appears to work very well for most ancient deep-sea fan systems. It can be modified slightly to fit other fan systems, but it cannot be used as a satisfactory model for all ancient turbidite systems. It seems to be most applicable to fans fed by a single submarine canyon in which the sediment transported through the feeding canyon consists of a mixture of sand, silt, and clay sizes. In a subsequent section (Chapter 10), I will try to discuss settings and situations in which the Mutti and Ricci Lucchi (1972) model does not apply so well, and some examples of other models that may be more applicable to these systems. Most fundamental to the recognition of various types of turbidite systems, however, is the application of Facies A-G; because the facies are based on descriptive rather than generic characteristics; they are applicable to all models and possibly to future models that can be developed for deep-marine clastics.
The Mutti and Ricci Lucchi (1972) model consists of two major types of deposits, channelized
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Modern and Ancient Deep-Sea Fan Sedimentation
This course of modern and ancient deep-sea fan sedimentation provides the framework for understanding the morphology, physiography, geometry, depositional processes and reservoir potential of deep-sea fan deposits. Focus is chiefly on the principles that control fan sedimentation and the resultant morphology of fans deposited in various types of settings. Through the comparison of modern and ancient examples of deep-sea fan sedimentation, the authors hope to increase understanding of the principal characteristics of fans. The course is divided into four parts (1) the Introduction, which covers the organization of the course and history of fan studies, (2) modern deep-sea fan deposits, (3) ancient deep-sea fan deposits, and (4) the synthesis, in which the results of the separate modern and ancient examinations of deep-sea fan deposits are synthesized into models that may be applicable to petroleum exploration.