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Closed Access item Growth patterns of a proximal terrigenous margin offshore the Guadalfeo River, northern Alboran Sea (SW Mediterranean Sea): glacio-eustatic control and disturbing tectonic factors

Authors:Lobo, F. J.
Maldonado, Andrés
Hernández-Molina, Francisco J.
Fernández-Salas, L. M.
Ercilla, Gemma
Alonso, Belén
Keywords:Alboran Sea, Pliocene, Quaternary, Proximal margin evolution, Seismic stratigraphy, Sequence stratigraphy
Issue Date:Sep-2008
Publisher:Springer
Citation:Marine Geophysical Researches 29(3): 195-216 (2008)
Abstract:The shelf-upper slope stratigraphy offshore and around the Guadalfeo River on the northern continental margin of the Alboran Sea, Western Mediterranean Basin, has been defined through the interpretation of a grid of Sparker seismic profiles. We tried to identify evolutionary trends in shelf growth, as well as to determine the regional/local factors that may modify the influence of glacio-eustatic fluctuations. Four major depositional sequences are identified in the sedimentary record by a detailed seismic interpretation, which defines three significant intervals of shelf-upper slope progradation, dominated by deposition of shelf-margin wedges, which resulted in uniform patterns of shelf-margin growth in response to significant sea-level falls. In contrast, the record of transgressive intervals is more variable, mainly as the result of distinct patterns of regressive-to-transgressive transitions. Major progradational wedges are internally composed of seaward-prograding, landward-thinning wedges, interpreted to represent shelf-margin deltaic deposits. In contrast, the last aggradational interval is composed of shelf-prograding wedges that show distinct characteristics, in terms of seismic facies, morphology and distribution when compared with previous shelf-margin wedges. These shelf wedges are thought to represent the particular case of Regressive Systems or Shelf Margin Systems Tracts, and their development seems to be controlled by a drastic change in main depocenter location, which moved from the upper slope to the shelf during the Pleistocene. The stacking pattern of seismic units, the shallowness of the acoustic basement and the migration of the shelf break are used to infer spatial and temporal changes in tectonic subsidence-uplift rates, which interact with low-order glacio-eustatic changes. For much of the Pliocene-Quaternary, uplifted sectors alternated laterally with sectors experiencing more subsidence. Subsequently, a significant change from lateral outgrowth to vertical accretion is recognised. This stratigraphic change could be related to the combined influence of increased subsidence rates on the shelf and the onset of higher-frequency glacio-eustatic cyclicity after the Mid Pleistocene Revolution that occurred around 1 Ma.
Description:22 pages, 17 figures, 1 table.
Publisher version (URL):http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11001-008-9058-5
URI:http://hdl.handle.net/10261/18315
ISSN:0091-0627
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