This study investigates Ionian Sea seismo-turbidite (ST) deposits that we interpret to be triggered by major historic earthquakes and tsunamis in the Calabrian Arc. ST beds can be correlated with the AD 1908 Mw 7.24 Messina, AD 1693 Mw 7.41 Catania, and AD 1169 Mw 6.6 Eastern Sicily earthquakes while two previously unknown turbidites might have been generated by the AD 1818 Mw 6.23 Catania and AD 1542 Mw 6.77 Siracusa earthquakes. Textural, micropaleontological, geochemical and mineralogical signatures of STs reveal cyclic patterns of STa, STb, STc and STd sedimentary units for each earthquake with an associated tsunami. The STa unit contains multiple ST stacks with different mineralogy, geochemistry foraminiferal assemblages and sedimentary structures that are deposited from synchronous multiple slope failures and turbidity currents. The STb homogenite graded mud unit overlying the STa unit is deposited by the waning flows of the multiple turbidity currents that are trapped in the Ionian Sea confined basin. The STc laminated and marine-sourced unit results from seiching of the confined water mass that appears to be generated by earthquake ruptures combined with tsunami waves. The STd unit is a tsunamite cap deposited by the slow settling suspension cloud created by tsunami wave backwash erosion of the shoreline and continental shelf. This tsunami process interpretation is based on the textural gradation of the upper unit and a more continental source of the tsunamite cap which includes C/N >10 and the presence of inner shelf foraminifera with a lack of abyssal species. This interpretation is in agreement with the lack of a tsunamite cap for the turbidite likely linked to the AD 1542 historic earthquake that is not associated with a tsunami. The new sedimentologic criteria identifies the final seiche and tsunamite cap deposits of STs and provides a model that can now be tested in other locations to better understand the different depositional processes of seismo-turbidites in confined basins.

A depositional model for seismo-turbidites in confined basins based on Ionian Sea deposits

COLIZZA, ESTER;
2016

Abstract

This study investigates Ionian Sea seismo-turbidite (ST) deposits that we interpret to be triggered by major historic earthquakes and tsunamis in the Calabrian Arc. ST beds can be correlated with the AD 1908 Mw 7.24 Messina, AD 1693 Mw 7.41 Catania, and AD 1169 Mw 6.6 Eastern Sicily earthquakes while two previously unknown turbidites might have been generated by the AD 1818 Mw 6.23 Catania and AD 1542 Mw 6.77 Siracusa earthquakes. Textural, micropaleontological, geochemical and mineralogical signatures of STs reveal cyclic patterns of STa, STb, STc and STd sedimentary units for each earthquake with an associated tsunami. The STa unit contains multiple ST stacks with different mineralogy, geochemistry foraminiferal assemblages and sedimentary structures that are deposited from synchronous multiple slope failures and turbidity currents. The STb homogenite graded mud unit overlying the STa unit is deposited by the waning flows of the multiple turbidity currents that are trapped in the Ionian Sea confined basin. The STc laminated and marine-sourced unit results from seiching of the confined water mass that appears to be generated by earthquake ruptures combined with tsunami waves. The STd unit is a tsunamite cap deposited by the slow settling suspension cloud created by tsunami wave backwash erosion of the shoreline and continental shelf. This tsunami process interpretation is based on the textural gradation of the upper unit and a more continental source of the tsunamite cap which includes C/N >10 and the presence of inner shelf foraminifera with a lack of abyssal species. This interpretation is in agreement with the lack of a tsunamite cap for the turbidite likely linked to the AD 1542 historic earthquake that is not associated with a tsunami. The new sedimentologic criteria identifies the final seiche and tsunamite cap deposits of STs and provides a model that can now be tested in other locations to better understand the different depositional processes of seismo-turbidites in confined basins.
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http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/journal/00253227
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11368/2905836
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