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Stratigraphic aliasing and the transient nature of deep-water depositional sequences; revisiting the Mississippi Fan

Andrew S. Madof, Ashley D. Harris, Sarah E. Baumgardner, Peter M. Sadler, Fabien J. Laugier and Nicholas Christie-Blick
Stratigraphic aliasing and the transient nature of deep-water depositional sequences; revisiting the Mississippi Fan
Geology (Boulder) (April 2019) Pre-Issue Publication

Abstract

Sequence stratigraphy remains the foremost methodology used to describe the stratigraphic record and to interpret the controls on deposition; yet, it relies on long-standing assumptions that few studies have sought to validate. Here, we present results from testing hypotheses related to the deep-water depositional sequence model by revisiting the seismic-based type locality: the Mississippi Fan, in the central Gulf of Mexico. By independently testing the relationship between cycles of relative sea-level change and those of sedimentation, we demonstrate that >98% of Neogene-Quaternary deep-water sequences do not accumulate in a manner prescribed by long-held sequence stratigraphic conventions. Instead, over the past 5.5 Myr, sequences show a temporal mismatch in frequency, phase, and amplitude with cycles of relative sea-level change, a concept we refer to as stratigraphic aliasing. Divergences are attributed to variable rates of sedimentation, which were responsible for creating cycle frequencies that were both higher and lower than those of relative sea-level change, and that resulted in two modes of Mississippi Fan accumulation: lower average sedimentation rates in older sediments, and an opposite trend in younger successions. The latter mode occurred approximately 2.2 Myr after the onset of North American glaciation, a period marked by significant continental drainage reorganization and salt-tectonic deformation. Based on our conclusions, we recommend that the future of sequence stratigraphy be rooted firmly in assessing the reproducibility of preexisting spatiotemporal predictions and in the rigorous use of multiple working hypotheses.


ISSN: 0091-7613
EISSN: 1943-2682
Coden: GLGYBA
Serial Title: Geology (Boulder)
Serial Volume: Pre-Issue Publication
Title: Stratigraphic aliasing and the transient nature of deep-water depositional sequences; revisiting the Mississippi Fan
Affiliation: Chevron Energy Technology Company, Houston, TX, United States
Published: 20190416
Text Language: English
Publisher: Geological Society of America (GSA), Boulder, CO, United States
References: 26
Accession Number: 2019-038017
Categories: Stratigraphy
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Annotation: GSA Data Repository item 2019202
Illustration Description: illus.
N23°46'60" - N28°45'00", W91°15'00" - W84°30'00"
Secondary Affiliation: University of California at Riverside, USA, United StatesLamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, USA, United States
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2019, American Geosciences Institute. Reference includes data from GeoScienceWorld, Alexandria, VA, United States. Reference includes data supplied by the Geological Society of America, Boulder, CO, United States
Update Code: 2019
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