Abstract

A systematic technique for sequential restoration of salt-related extensional structures incorporates Airy isostasy to quantify both the loading subsidence and the change in water depth during any time interval. The results are used to generate paleo-sea-floor templates for restoration and to reconstruct evolving salt and sediment geometries. Paleobathymetries calculated by the restoration technique are compatible with paleobathymetric environments derived from biofacies analysis of benthic foraminifers sampled in five wells along a reflection seismic profile from western Eugene Island, offshore Louisiana, northern Gulf of Mexico. Furthermore, both aggradation and progradation rates measured from the restorations are consistent with regional depositional patterns. The results demonstrate that the restoration method adequately determines paleobathymetry and sea-floor paleotopography. Restoration of multiple sections can provide a framework for the estimation of sediment transport and deposition geometries and facies development.

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