The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

A new model for turbidity current behavior based on integration of flow monitoring and precision coring in a submarine canyon

A new model for turbidity current behavior based on integration of flow monitoring and precision coring in a submarine canyon
A new model for turbidity current behavior based on integration of flow monitoring and precision coring in a submarine canyon
Submarine turbidity currents create some of the largest sediment accumulations on Earth, yet there are few direct measurements of these flows. Instead, most of our understanding of turbidity currents results from analyzing their deposits in the sedimentary record. However, the lack of direct flow measurements means that there is considerable debate regarding how to interpret flow properties from ancient deposits. This novel study combines detailed flow monitoring with unusually precisely located cores at different heights, and multiple locations, within the Monterey submarine canyon, offshore California, USA. Dating demonstrates that the cores include the time interval that flows were monitored in the canyon, albeit individual layers cannot be tied to specific flows. There is good correlation between grain sizes collected by traps within the flow and grain sizes measured in cores from similar heights on the canyon walls. Synthesis of flow and deposit data suggests that turbidity currents sourced from the upper reaches of Monterey Canyon comprise three flow phases. Initially, a thin (38–50 m) powerful flow in the upper canyon can transport, tilt, and break the most proximal moorings and deposit chaotic sands and gravel on the canyon floor. The initially thin flow front then thickens and deposits interbedded sands and silty muds on the canyon walls as much as 62 m above the canyon floor. Finally, the flow thickens along its length, thus lofting silty mud and depositing it at greater altitudes than the previous deposits and in excess of 70 m altitude.
0091-7613
367-370
Symons, William O.
57c58604-e967-4cba-8ab3-fd690c1f5635
Sumner, Esther J.
dbba4b92-89cc-45d9-888e-d0e87e5c10ac
Paull, Charles K.
be22c67a-494d-487c-9e5e-a2d16d7a4050
Cartigny, Matthieu J.B.
bda1b79b-7e11-4790-8238-b86d80a88bb3
Xu, J.P.
b524dd58-f11c-462c-a9c1-b9654b3dd543
Maier, Katherine L.
96e5d36e-78b7-415f-845b-8061a1ef5b81
Lorenson, Thomas D.
10939fce-ebc8-40c7-a9fa-5c0a65959b36
Talling, Peter J.
cda7fee6-bdff-4987-b203-450d1ce01179
Symons, William O.
57c58604-e967-4cba-8ab3-fd690c1f5635
Sumner, Esther J.
dbba4b92-89cc-45d9-888e-d0e87e5c10ac
Paull, Charles K.
be22c67a-494d-487c-9e5e-a2d16d7a4050
Cartigny, Matthieu J.B.
bda1b79b-7e11-4790-8238-b86d80a88bb3
Xu, J.P.
b524dd58-f11c-462c-a9c1-b9654b3dd543
Maier, Katherine L.
96e5d36e-78b7-415f-845b-8061a1ef5b81
Lorenson, Thomas D.
10939fce-ebc8-40c7-a9fa-5c0a65959b36
Talling, Peter J.
cda7fee6-bdff-4987-b203-450d1ce01179

Symons, William O., Sumner, Esther J., Paull, Charles K., Cartigny, Matthieu J.B., Xu, J.P., Maier, Katherine L., Lorenson, Thomas D. and Talling, Peter J. (2017) A new model for turbidity current behavior based on integration of flow monitoring and precision coring in a submarine canyon. Geology, 45 (4), 367-370. (doi:10.1130/G38764.1).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Submarine turbidity currents create some of the largest sediment accumulations on Earth, yet there are few direct measurements of these flows. Instead, most of our understanding of turbidity currents results from analyzing their deposits in the sedimentary record. However, the lack of direct flow measurements means that there is considerable debate regarding how to interpret flow properties from ancient deposits. This novel study combines detailed flow monitoring with unusually precisely located cores at different heights, and multiple locations, within the Monterey submarine canyon, offshore California, USA. Dating demonstrates that the cores include the time interval that flows were monitored in the canyon, albeit individual layers cannot be tied to specific flows. There is good correlation between grain sizes collected by traps within the flow and grain sizes measured in cores from similar heights on the canyon walls. Synthesis of flow and deposit data suggests that turbidity currents sourced from the upper reaches of Monterey Canyon comprise three flow phases. Initially, a thin (38–50 m) powerful flow in the upper canyon can transport, tilt, and break the most proximal moorings and deposit chaotic sands and gravel on the canyon floor. The initially thin flow front then thickens and deposits interbedded sands and silty muds on the canyon walls as much as 62 m above the canyon floor. Finally, the flow thickens along its length, thus lofting silty mud and depositing it at greater altitudes than the previous deposits and in excess of 70 m altitude.

Text
Symons_ G38764_v1_proof.pdf - Accepted Manuscript
Restricted to Repository staff only
Request a copy
Text
367.full - Version of Record
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.
Download (614kB)

More information

Accepted/In Press date: 28 December 2016
e-pub ahead of print date: 13 February 2017
Published date: 1 April 2017
Additional Information: Funded by NERC: NOC-2013-DTG Funding 6 Studentships (NE/L501657/1)
Organisations: Ocean and Earth Science, Geology & Geophysics, Marine Geoscience

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 405616
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/405616
ISSN: 0091-7613
PURE UUID: 1229c78b-b5c9-436e-a1e7-863547a55306

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 08 Feb 2017 09:43
Last modified: 27 Apr 2022 08:44

Export record

Altmetrics

Contributors

Author: William O. Symons
Author: Charles K. Paull
Author: Matthieu J.B. Cartigny
Author: J.P. Xu
Author: Katherine L. Maier
Author: Thomas D. Lorenson
Author: Peter J. Talling

Download statistics

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics

Atom RSS 1.0 RSS 2.0

Contact ePrints Soton: eprints@soton.ac.uk

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/cgi/oai2

This repository has been built using EPrints software, developed at the University of Southampton, but available to everyone to use.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.

×