Architecture and Facies of Confined Deep-water Clastics in the Grand Coyer Remnant, Grès d’Annot, France
Julian Clark, David Stanbrook, Andy Gardiner, 2008. "Architecture and Facies of Confined Deep-water Clastics in the Grand Coyer Remnant, Grès d’Annot, France", Atlas of Deep-Water Outcrops, Tor H. Nilsen, Roger D. Shew, Gary S. Steffens, Joseph R. J. Studlick
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The Grand Coyer area provides a well-exposed remnant of the Grès d’Annot deep-water sandstones, which were deposited in the southern Alpine foreland basin during the Eocene and Oligocene. The Grès d’Annot has been extensively studied by many researchers; it provides an important analog for the stratigraphic and depositional architecture of deep-water elastics deposited in confined and ponded basins (for a full summary of recent work, see Joseph and Lomas, 2004).
The Grès d’Annot is preserved in a series of largely synclinal outliers in the Alps of southeast France and parts of Italy. During deposition, sediment was delivered from the southeast, draining the Maures-Esterel and Corsica-Sardinia massifs. Linked depocen-ters and troughs developed on top of early Alpine thrust systems of the southern sub-Alpine chains.
The Grand Coyer basin remnant (Figure 1) is a significant set of outcrops that allow us to link the paleogeography from the more proximal Annot town remnant in the south to the downdip basin remnants in the north. The north face of Grand Coyer exposes an extensive outcrop of the Grès d’Annot with a variety of depositional facies and stratigraphic architectures (Figures 2–11). The lower part of the exposed section comprises amalgamated sheet sandstones and conglomerates, interpreted to have been deposited in a highly confined basin setting. These are overlain by a distinctive interval comprising shale-rich intervals and sandstone packages with erosive bases interpreted as channel fills (Figures 5–10). The shale-rich intervals are characterized by
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Tor H. Nilsen, a red-haired Scandinavian who stood more than six feet tall, died October 9, 2005, at his San Carlos, California, home. This was after a valiant five-year fight with melanoma cancer. He was 63. His ashes were scattered at his family plot in Norway in 2006.
He was born in New York City on November 29, 1941, to Mollie Abrahamson and Nils Marius Nilsen of Mandal, Norway, and was the first of their children to be born in the United States. After graduating from Brooklyn Tech, he earned his B.S. in geology from City College of New York in 1962. While there, his prowess on the basketball court impressed a scout from the New York Knicks, but Tor went on to graduate school and earned his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in geology from the University of Wisconsin at Madison in 1964 and 1967, respectively. His M.S. thesis was a study of Precambrian metasedimentary deposits in the Lake Superior area, and his Ph.D. thesis was a study of Devonian alluvial-fan deposits of the Old Red Sandstone in western Norway.
Dr. Nilsen’s principal expertise was in depositional systems analysis, stratigraphic analysis, and the relationships among tectonics, eustasy, and sedimentation. He began his industry career in 1967 as a research geologist with the Shell Development Company in Houston, Texas, and Ventura, California, where he worked on the tectonics and sedimentation of Tertiary shelf systems of coastal California. He subsequently spent two years with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers as the Military