Anatomy of a compound delta from the post-glacial transgressive record in the Adriatic Sea

Type Article
Date 2015-04
Language English
Author(s) Pellegrini Claudio1, 2, Maselli Vittorio1, Cattaneo AntonioORCID3, Piva Andrea4, Ceregato Alessandro1, Trincardi Fabio1
Affiliation(s) 1 : CNR, ISMRA, I-40129 Bologna, Italy.
2 : Univ Bologna, Dipartimento Sci Terra & Geol Ambientali, I-40126 Bologna, Italy.
3 : IFREMER, Geosci Marines Ctr Brest, F-29280 Plouzane, France.
4 : Sedimentol Petrog & Stratig Dept, Eni Explorat & Prod Div, I-20097 San Donato Milanese, Italy.
Source Marine Geology (0025-3227) (Elsevier Science Bv), 2015-04 , Vol. 362 , P. 43-59
DOI 10.1016/j.margeo.2015.01.010
WOS© Times Cited 50
Keyword(s) Compound delta, Mediterranean Sea, Younger Dryas, Subaqueous clinoform, Transgressive deposits
Abstract On the Mediterranean continental shelves the post-glacial transgressive succession is a complex picture composed by seaward progradations, related to sea level stillstands and/or increased sediment supply to the coasts, and minor flooding surfaces, associated to phases of enhanced rates of sea level rise. Among Late Pleistocene examples, major mid-shelf progradations have been related to the short-term climatic reversal of the Younger Dryas event, a period during which the combination of increased sediment supply from rivers and reduced rates of sea level rise promoted the formation of progradations up to tens-meter thick. While the documentation of coastal and subaqueous progradations recording the Younger Dryas interval are widely reported in the literature, the model of compound progradation within transgressive deposits is not proposed so far. Here we present the documentation of a deltaic system where both delta front sands and related fine-grained subaqueous progradations (prodeltaic to shallow marine) have been preserved. The Paleo Gargano Compound Delta (PGCD) formed offshore the modern Gargano Promontory (southern Adriatic Sea), and is composed by a coastal coarse-grained delta of reduced thickness and a muddy subaqueous clinoform, up to 30 meters thick. The PGCD, probably the first worldwide documentation of a compound delta within the transgressive record, provides the opportunity to investigate the processes controlling the formation of a compound delta system during an overall sea level rise and the factors that allowed its preservation. The finding of the PGCD provides the opportunity of a comparison with modern worldwide compound systems.
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