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A phase of transient subsidence, sediment bypass and deposition of regressive-transgressive cycles during the breakup of Iberia and Newfoundland

Alves, Tiago M. ORCID: and Abreu Cunha, Tiago 2018. A phase of transient subsidence, sediment bypass and deposition of regressive-transgressive cycles during the breakup of Iberia and Newfoundland. Earth and Planetary Science Letters 484 , pp. 168-183. 10.1016/j.epsl.2017.11.054

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Seismic, outcrop and well data from West Iberia and Newfoundland are used to investigate sediment stacking patterns during continental breakup as a function of tectonic subsidence. In West Iberia, two breakup sequences are revealed on seismic data by marked strata offlap oceanwards from the present-day continental shelf. This character is similar to Newfoundland, where correlative strata comprise Lower Cretaceous–Cenomanian coarse-grained siliciclastics accumulated around local sediment-source areas. The interpreted data reveal that the two breakup sequences: 1) materialise sediment bypass onto continental-slope depocentres that experienced important tectonic subsidence during continental breakup, but without showing typical syn-rift growth packages; 2) generate specific forced-regressive stratigraphic intervals that relate to uplift and exhumation of the proximal margin. Subsidence and sediment stacking patterns in both West Iberia and Newfoundland reflect similar continental breakup processes as they evolved from the upper lithosphere- to their mantle-breakup stages. On both margins, coarse-grained siliciclastic units on the proximal margin give rise to thick shaley successions in deep-water basins. This work also confirms that in a setting dominated by a significant sediment influx, yet lacking the burial rates of continental slope basins in Newfoundland, West Iberia comprised accommodation-driven basins during continental breakup, not necessarily sediment starved. As a corollary of our analysis, we classify breakup sequences around the world based on the characteristic lithologies of their regressive–transgressive depositional cycles.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Earth and Environmental Sciences
Additional Information: This is an open access article under the CC BY license.
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0012-821X
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 23 December 2017
Date of Acceptance: 30 November 2017
Last Modified: 05 May 2023 23:04

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