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Submarine Slope Systems I

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Published:
January 01, 1984

Abstract

Submarine slopes are characterized by their relatively steep declivity. Although the angle of the slope is commonly less than 5 in active depositional slopes, this is sufficient to result in considerable instability. The upper slope in particular is a zone of sediment instability and bypass, and is a focus of erosional processes. Sediment remobilization and transport are dominated by gravity mass-transport and density underflow processes. Mass-transport processes include:

  1. Slumping along discrete glide planes

  2. Debris flows of viscous sediment-water mixtures

Because gravitational potential energy is the principal driving mechanism for down-slope transport, slope systems are distinguished by their inherent tendency to deposit coarsest sediment at the base of the depositional sequence in bathymetric lows (fig. 1). Sand, though present as a part of the resedimented material, is unlikely to be deposited at the crest of bathymetric highs, as shown by core results from the Quaternary

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Contents

AAPG Continuing Education Course Notes Series

Structural and Depositional Styles of Gulf Coast Tertiary Continental Margins: Application to Hydrocarbon Exploration

Martin P.A. Jackson
Martin P.A. Jackson
Bureau of Economic Geology, The University of Texas at Austin
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William E. Galloway
William E. Galloway
Bureau of Economic Geology, The University of Texas at Austin
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American Association of Petroleum Geologists
Volume
25
ISBN electronic:
9781629811543
Publication date:
January 01, 1984

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