Biocalcarenite and mixed cool-water prograding bodies of the Mediterranean Pliocene and Pleistocene: architecture, depositional setting and forcing factors
Published:January 01, 2006
F. Massari, F. Chiocci, 2006. "Biocalcarenite and mixed cool-water prograding bodies of the Mediterranean Pliocene and Pleistocene: architecture, depositional setting and forcing factors", Cool-Water Carbonates: Depositional Systems and Palaeoenvironmental Controls, H. M. Pedley, G. Carannante
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Plio-Quaternary basinward-prograding heterozoan carbonate wedges with seaward-dipping, steep clinoforms and significant along-strike extension, are common both on land and along the submerged margins of the Mediterranean area. They developed as distally steepened ramps on storm-dominated, relatively steep-gradient margins, commonly controlled by tectonics. Dispersal of the skeletal hash was mainly due to storm-driven downwelling and geostrophic currents, changing into gravity flows down the clinoformed ramp margin. Due to active winnowing and bypass in the shallow-water settings, biocalcarenite ramps were entirely detached from the shoreline. Sequence-stratigraphic architecture of cropping out prograding bodies indicates the presence of internal unconformity surfaces bounding shingled units with sigmoidal to oblique clinoforms. Similar wedges identified by seismic survey on the margins of the Tyrrhenian Sea generally show a back-stepping pattern, with the deeper-located wedges related to the last lowstand and the subsequent wedges reflecting episodic stillstands during sea-level rise. A critical role in determining the efficiency of the carbonate factory is thought to have been played by the increase in the strength of atmospheric and marine circulation which accompanied the long-term climatic change affecting the Mediterranean area since 3.1 Ma, especially during cooler to colder stages.
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Cool-Water Carbonates: Depositional Systems and Palaeoenvironmental Controls
During the past decade, work on cool water carbonates has expanded to become a mainstream research area. Studies on modern and Quaternary deposits will continue to be important; however, there is increasing momentum towards unravelling sediment processes, biota-sediment interactions and diagenetic products in Cenozoic and older cool-water carbonates.
Many contributions in this book document Cenozoic and Quaternary carbonates from landlocked (microtidal) water-bodies. These carbonates display important differences in biota and fabric distributions when compared with world ocean examples. Consequently, the scientific community is now better placed to reinterpret pre-Tertiary carbonates where there is a suspicion that they have developed under microtidal conditions. Some papers in the book provide new approaches to interpreting environmental change within macrotidal regimes and others lay firm foundations for future cool-water carbonate diagenetic research
The aim of the book is to illustrate recent international contributions to cool-water carbonates research, with an emphasis on Neogene and Recent case studies. Contributions are divided into three sections: microtidal carbonates from the Mediterranean realm; macrotidal examples from New Zealand, Australia and Mexico; and early diagenetic fabrics.