A Cretaceous carbonate delta drift in the Montagna della Maiella, Italy

Eberli, Gregor P.; Bernoulli, Daniel; Vecsei, Adam; Sekti, Rizky; Grasmueck, Mark; Lüdmann, Thomas; Anselmetti, Flavio; Mutti, Maria; Porta, Giovanna Della (2019). A Cretaceous carbonate delta drift in the Montagna della Maiella, Italy. Sedimentology, 66(4), pp. 1266-1301. Wiley 10.1111/sed.12590

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The Upper Cretaceous (Campanian–Maastrichtian) bioclastic wedge of the Orfento Formation in the Montagna della Maiella, Italy, is compared to newly discovered contourite drifts in the Maldives. Like the drift deposits in the Maldives, the Orfento Formation fills a channel and builds a Miocene delta-shaped and mounded sedimentary body in the basin that is similar in size to the approximately 350 km2 large coarse-grained bioclastic Miocene delta drifts in the Maldives. The composition of the bioclastic wedge of the Orfento Formation is also exclusively bioclastic debris sourced from the shallow-water areas and reworked clasts of the Orfento Formation itself. In the near mud-free succession, age-diagnostic fossils are sparse. The deposi- tional textures vary from wackestone to float-rudstone and breccia/conglom- erates, but rocks with grainstone and rudstone textures are the most common facies. In the channel, lensoid convex-upward breccias, cross-cut- ting channelized beds and thick grainstone lobes with abundant scours indi- cate alternating erosion and deposition from a high-energy current. In the basin, the mounded sedimentary body contains lobes with a divergent progradational geometry. The lobes are built by decametre thick composite megabeds consisting of sigmoidal clinoforms that typically have a channel- ized topset, a grainy foreset and a fine-grained bottomset with abundant irregular angular clasts. Up to 30 m thick channels filled with intraforma- tional breccias and coarse grainstones pinch out downslope between the megabeds. In the distal portion of the wedge, stacked grainstone beds with foresets and reworked intraclasts document continuous sediment reworking and migration. The bioclastic wedge of the Orfento Formation has been vari- ously interpreted as a succession of sea-level controlled slope deposits, a shoaling shoreface complex, or a carbonate tidal delta. Current-controlled delta drifts in the Maldives, however, offer a new interpretation because of their similarity in architecture and composition. These similarities include:(i) a feeder channel opening into the basin; (ii) an excavation moat at the exit of the channel; (iii) an overall mounded geometry with an apex that is in shallower water depth than the source channel; (iv) progradation of stacked lobes; (v) channels that pinch out in a basinward direction; and (vi) smaller channelized intervals that are arranged in a radial pattern. As a result, the Upper Cretaceous (Campanian–Maastrichtian) bioclastic wedge of the Orfento Formation in the Montagna della Maiella, Italy, is here interpreted as a carbonate delta drift.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geological Sciences
08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geological Sciences > Quaternary Geology

UniBE Contributor:

Anselmetti, Flavio

Subjects:

500 Science > 550 Earth sciences & geology

ISSN:

0037-0746

Publisher:

Wiley

Language:

English

Submitter:

Flavio Anselmetti

Date Deposited:

31 Jul 2019 10:45

Last Modified:

22 Oct 2019 19:38

Publisher DOI:

10.1111/sed.12590

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.132096

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/132096

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