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Geology and geophysics of the Bahamas

By
R. E. Sheridan
R. E. Sheridan
Department of Geology, University of Delaware, Newark, Delaware 19716
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;
H. T. Mullins
H. T. Mullins
Department of Geology, Heroy Geology Laboratory, Syracuse University, Syracuse, New York 13210
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;
J. A. Austin, Jr.
J. A. Austin, Jr.
Institute for Geophysics, University of Texas, Austin, Texas 78751
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;
M. M. Ball
M. M. Ball
Office of Marine Geology, U.S. Geological Survey, Woods Hole, Massachusetts 02543
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;
J. W. Ladd
J. W. Ladd
Lamont-Doherty Geological Observatory of Columbia University, Palisades, New York 10964
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Published:
January 01, 1988

Abstract

The broad, shallow banks and intervening deep water (800-4000 m) channels of the Bahama Platform are unlike any other topography on the larger Atlantic margin (Fig. 1). The Bahama Platform covers roughly an area of 470,000 km2, which is nearly equivalent to the area of the exposed Atlantic coastal plain from Cape Hatteras to Florida. The Bahama Platform is divided into a northwest part and a southeast part by a northeast trending line between Rum Cay bank and Oriente, Cuba (Fig. 1). The northwest part of the Platform is characterized by a larger portion of the area being shallow banks and a lesser portion being deep-water channels and basins with water depths of 800-4000 m. In contrast, the southeast portion of the Platform has a greater portion of the area as deep water channels surrounding smaller isolated banks; the depths of the channels are generally deeper than 2000 m. (Uchupi and others, 1971).

The deep channels and basins segmenting the Bahama Platform are of three different types: 1. open seaways with openings to deeper water at both ends; 2. closed seaways of linear proportions but open to deeper water only at one end; and 3. circular and semi-circular basins. Examples of open seaways are the Florida Straits, the Santaren/Nicholas Channels, the Northwest Providence Channel, the Northeast Providence Channel, and the Old Bahama Channel; Tongue of the Ocean (TOTO) and Exuma Sound are closed seaways; and Columbus Basin and Caicos Basin are semi-circular types.

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Contents

DNAG, Geology of North America

The Atlantic Continental Margin

Robert E. Sheridan
Robert E. Sheridan
Robert E. Sheridan Department of Geological Sciences Busch Campus Rutgers University New Brunswick, New Jersey 08903
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John A. Grow
John A. Grow
U.S. Geological Survey MS 960, Box 25046 Denver Federal Center Denver, Colorado 80225
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Geological Society of America
Volume
I-2
ISBN electronic:
9780813754581
Publication date:
January 01, 1988

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