This study reviews the thickness statistics of non-channelized turbidites from four tertiary basins of Central Northern Apennines (Italy), where bed geometry and sedimentary character have been previously assessed. Though very different in terms of size and, arguably, character of feeder system, these basins share a common stratigraphic evolution consisting in transition from an early ponded to a late unconfined setting of deposition. Based on comparison of thickness subsets from diverse locations and stratigraphic heights within the studied turbidite fills, this paper seeks to answer the following questions: i) how data collection procedures and field operational constraints (e.g. measure location, outcrop quality, use of thicknesses data from single vs. multiple correlative sections, stratigraphic thickness of the study interval) can affect statistics of sample data? ii) how depositional controls of confined vs. unconfined turbidite basins can result in different thickness-frequency distributions?; and iii) is there in thickness statistics a 'flow confinement' signature which can be used to distinguish between confined and unconfined turbidites? Results suggest that: i) best practices of data collection are crucial to a meaningful interpretation of sample data statistics, especially in presence of stratigraphic and spatial trends of turbidite bed thickness; ii) a systematic bias against cm-thick Tcd Bouma sequence turbidites exists in sample data, which can result in the low-end tail of empirical thickness-frequency distributions to depart significantly from the actual distribution of turbidite thickness; and iii) thickness statistics of beds starting with a basal Ta/Tb Bouma division bear a coherent relationship to the transition from ponded to unconfined depositional settings, consisting in reduction of variance and mean and, consequently, parameters, or even type, of best fit model distribution. This research highlights the role of flow stripping, sediment by-pass and bed geometry in altering the initial thickness distribution of ponded turbidites and suggests how fully ponded mini-basins represent the ideal setting for further research linking turbidite thickness statistics and frequency distribution of parent flow volumes. (C) 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

The thick-bedded tail of turbidite thickness distribution as a proxy for flow confinement: Examples from tertiary basins of central and northern Apennines (Italy)

Patacci M
2016-01-01

Abstract

This study reviews the thickness statistics of non-channelized turbidites from four tertiary basins of Central Northern Apennines (Italy), where bed geometry and sedimentary character have been previously assessed. Though very different in terms of size and, arguably, character of feeder system, these basins share a common stratigraphic evolution consisting in transition from an early ponded to a late unconfined setting of deposition. Based on comparison of thickness subsets from diverse locations and stratigraphic heights within the studied turbidite fills, this paper seeks to answer the following questions: i) how data collection procedures and field operational constraints (e.g. measure location, outcrop quality, use of thicknesses data from single vs. multiple correlative sections, stratigraphic thickness of the study interval) can affect statistics of sample data? ii) how depositional controls of confined vs. unconfined turbidite basins can result in different thickness-frequency distributions?; and iii) is there in thickness statistics a 'flow confinement' signature which can be used to distinguish between confined and unconfined turbidites? Results suggest that: i) best practices of data collection are crucial to a meaningful interpretation of sample data statistics, especially in presence of stratigraphic and spatial trends of turbidite bed thickness; ii) a systematic bias against cm-thick Tcd Bouma sequence turbidites exists in sample data, which can result in the low-end tail of empirical thickness-frequency distributions to depart significantly from the actual distribution of turbidite thickness; and iii) thickness statistics of beds starting with a basal Ta/Tb Bouma division bear a coherent relationship to the transition from ponded to unconfined depositional settings, consisting in reduction of variance and mean and, consequently, parameters, or even type, of best fit model distribution. This research highlights the role of flow stripping, sediment by-pass and bed geometry in altering the initial thickness distribution of ponded turbidites and suggests how fully ponded mini-basins represent the ideal setting for further research linking turbidite thickness statistics and frequency distribution of parent flow volumes. (C) 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11697/220352
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