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Sequence Stratigraphy Template for “ Conceptual Models ” Used to Interpret Depositional Systems - beauty but not truth ? -. Christopher G. St. C. Kendall University of South Carolina kendall@sc.edu 803 978 7523. Why codify ‘rules’ for sequence stratigraphic nomenclature?.

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Sequence Stratigraphy Template for “ Conceptual Models ” Used to Interpret Depositional Systems - beauty but not tr


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    1. Sequence Stratigraphy Template for “Conceptual Models” Used to Interpret Depositional Systems - beauty butnot truth? - Christopher G. St. C. Kendall University of South Carolina kendall@sc.edu 803 978 7523 Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    2. Why codify ‘rules’ for sequence stratigraphic nomenclature? • We use common terms and know their meaning • Have a standard hierarchy of subdivisions • Have a uniform methodology • Guidance for revision • Teaching resource: each new generation of students & practitioners have a common understanding Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    3. Sequence Stratigraphy A framework of genetically related stratigraphic facies geometries and their bounding surfaces used to determine depositional setting Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    4. Sequence Stratigraphy – Terminology Stratigraphers have a position on terminology similar to the of Humpty Dumpty's from Lewis Carroll’s Through the Looking Glass • "When I use a word, it means just what I choose it to mean - nothing more nor less". Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    5. Talk Organization • Sedimentary Analysis & Sequence Stratigraphy • History of Sequence Stratigraphy • Sequence Stratigraphy Analysis Defined • Geometries & Stacking Patterns • System Tracts & Relative Sea Level • Bounding Surfaces • Conceptual Models • Terminology That Should be Defined • Conclusions Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    6. Sequence Stratigraphy – The process • Interpretation of the Sedimentary section involves: • From oldest to youngest, identify the subdividing surfaces that envelope & enclose the discrete geometric bodies of sediment of the sedimentary section & build a template • Backstrip these geometries & then use the template of surfaces to reassemble them in order of their accumulation • The subdividing surfaces, geometry, lithofacies & fauna are input to a conceptual model to determine the evolving character of the depositional setting • ‘‘Each stratal unit is defined and identified only by physical relationships of the strata, including lateral continuity and geometry of the surfaces bounding the units, vertical stacking patterns, and lateral geometry of the strata within the units." (Van Wagoner et al., 1990). Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    7. 'Depositional' sequence Vail et al 1971 Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    8. SB mfs TS Establish a framework of genetically related stratigraphic facies geometries and their bounding surfaces to determine depositional setting Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    9. CoastTypes Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    10. Sedimentary Analysis • Potential flow of interpretation • Scheme used • to characterize depositional systems so they can be compared data data interpretation interpretation interpretation Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    11. Power of Sequence Stratigraphy Determines depositional setting by: • Establishing the order in which strata were laid down in • Explains the geometric hierarchy of sedimentary strata & the elements they form • Uses the major surfaces marking breaks in the character of sedimentary section as a template for conceptual depositional models, independent of time (relative ages) Geologic time derived from: • Radiometric markers • Biostratigraphic markers Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    12. Building Block Sedimentary Fill Hierarchy Sediment body characterization in order of decreasing complexity • Complex Set • Complex • Story • Element • Bed These are the fundamental components of Sequences and System tracts Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    13. Fluvial - Architectural Elements Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    14. Deepwater - Architectural Elements Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    15. Deepwater - Architectural Elements Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    16. Deepwater - Architectural Elements Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    17. SHELF COMPLEX MARGIN COMPLEX STACKEDBEDCYCLES BED, LITHOLOGY, SEDIMENTARY STRUCTURES FAUNA ALLOCHEMS CEMENTATION & DIAGENESIS Hierarchy of Carbonate Shelf Architectural Elements PROGRADING MARGIN ONLAPPING MARGIN PROGRADING MARGIN PROGRADING MARGIN Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    18. Elements – Sequence Building Blocks Definition of element hierarchy • Framework for systematic description & comparison of deposits of a depositional setting (fluvial, deltaic, deepwater etc) • Based on physical organization of strata (geometry) & the surfaces bounding them • Genetically-related stratigraphic elements form the hierarchy • Independent of type of setting • Applicable at all scales & to all sedimentary systems Purpose • Analysis & comparison of the elements of similar depositional systems • Provide the detailed character of a sequence and/or system tract • Net to-gross, aspect ratio, & connectivity • Lithofacies type & aquifer/reservoir quality • Application • Better defined depositional geometries and so depositional models • More accurate aquifer/resource assessment • Optimize strategy for depletion of aquifer/resource Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    19. History of Sequence Stratigraphy • Sloss recognized intercontinental-unconformities & related them to eustasy • Vail extrapolated eustatic signals to seismic sequence boundaries • Jervey’s simulations showed seismic sequences product of cyclic sea level (base level) change • Van Wagoner & Posamentier related unconformities, transgressive surfaces & maximum flooding surfaces to boundaries of system tracts in depositional sequences responding to sea level change • Hydrocarbon exploration models & production reservoir models use bounding surfaces, facies assemblages & system tracts as templates for depositional models & lithofacies geometry predictions Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    20. Sloss Unconformities & Eustasy After Lowell Thwaite Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    21. 1st Seismic Sequence Interpretation Vail et al, 1976 Mesozoic through Tertiary of Offshore Morocco Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    22. 'Depositional' sequence Vail Jervey Posmentier Van Wagoner Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    23. Sequence stratigraphy • Analytical protocol marries rules of thumb (heuristics) to conceptual models • Interprets general depositional setting of layered clastic & carbonate sedimentary strata • Models developed to interpret variety of datasets • Work best with combination of outcrop, core, well log, & seismic data • May work with two or more of these data sources but are least reliable for a single data source • Local differences in depositional processes, topography, and tectonics and, base level position, mean a model more appropriate to one setting, than others? Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    24. Sequence Stratigraphy’s Fuzzy Rules • Lithofacies geometries & confining surfaces transgress time • Different geometries for a specific time interval • Local variations in rates & direction of tectonic movement • Local rates of sediment supply & accumulation • Not all erosional or depositional surfaces are product of base level change Depositional models successfully predict lithofacies geometry for exploration & reservoirs Depositional model is refined as data base grows Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    25. Sequence stratigraphic analysis Fundamental to sequence stratigraphic analysis: • Strata deposited in order • Surfaces subdivide strata into packages of beds with common depositional origin • Geometric arrangement of strata & packages of strata reflect • Basin filling • Erosional events • Commonly sequence stratigraphiy applied to sediment accumulation at basin margins in continental, marginal marine, and/or down-slope settings • Fill accumulates either as: • Unconfined fill over these settings • Confined within erosional down-cut topography Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    26. Unconfined geometric architecture Stacked layers tend to have three basic patterns: • Aggrading (lie above one another vertically) • Prograding (inclined in order over and beside one another in a seaward direction) • Retrograding (inclined in order over & beside one another in a landward direction) Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    27. Stacking Patterns - Unconfined After Van Wagoner Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    28. Confined geometric architecture Fill post erosional down-cutting expressed by a geometric architecture of stacked layers in either succession of: • Organized offset bodies and/or • Randomly ordered disorganized offset bodies Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    29. Confined Sedimentary Fill - Channels Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    30. Stacking Pattern Rules & Problems • End member stratal stacking patterns reflect interplay of accommodation (space available for sediments to fill) & rates of sediment accumulation • Local vagaries in • Depositional processes • Topography • Tectonics & so base level position mean stacking styles of geometry may merge with one another but are tied to system tracts Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    31. Stacking, Surfaces & System tracts! Geometric architecture of stacked layers are inferred to be related to eustatic events: • Lowstand - Progradation-to-aggradational (PA) • Transgression - Retrogradational geometries (R), • Highstand - Aggradational-to-progradation geometries (AP) system tracts (Van Wagoner et al., 1988; Neil and Abreu, 2008) As many as five system tracts recognized but above three are most commonly used Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    32. System Tracts - Reviewed Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    33. System Tracts - Unconfined 3-D facies assemblages of common genetic origin with unconfined geometric architecture are interpreted to form during phases of relative sea-level cycle (Posamentier, et al, 1988) • System tracts defined by: • Bounding surfaces • Position within a sequence • Geometric stacking pattern • Lowstand - Progradation-to-aggradational (PA) • Transgression - Retrogradational geometries (R), • Highstand - Aggradational-to-progradation geometries (AP) system tracts (Van Wagoner et al., 1988; Neil and Abreu, 2008) As many as five system tracts recognized but above three are most commonly used Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    34. Surfaces, System tracts & Sequences Role of conceptual depositional models: System tracts are inferred to be related to accommodation generation and fill. This relationship is explained using conceptual models Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    35. Bounding Surfaces Identification & interpretation of bounding surfaces that separate layered clastic and carbonate sedimentary strata into genetically related packages, system tracts, a key to Sequence Stratigraphy • Maximum Flooding Surfaces (MFS) • Transgressive Surfaces (TS) (maximum regressive surfaces & transgressive ravinement surfaces) • Sequence Boundaries (SB) (subaerial unconformities, regressive surfaces of marine erosion & correlative conformities). Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    36. Conceptual Models Three conceptual models commonly used in sequence stratigraphy are separated from each other on basis of bounding & subdividing boundaries of system tracts: • 'Depositional' sequence of Vail et al 1971 • 'Genetic Stratigraphic' sequence model of Galloway, 1989 • 'Transgressive-Regressive' (T-R) sequence model of Embry and Johannessen, 1992 Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    37. 'Depositional' Sequence (Vail et al 1971) • Bounded by subaerial unconformities & marine correlative conformities • Bounding surface assumed genetically connected with stratigraphic hiatus associated with subaerial unconformity that is progressively younger in seaward direction • No matter systems-tract terminology used bounding surfaces of this sequence enclose: • Forced regressive • Normal regressive (lowstand and highstand) • Transgressive sedimentary packages Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    38. 'Genetic Stratigraphic' Sequence Galloway, 1989 • Bounded by maximum flooding surfaces. • These surfaces interpreted to form as sea level rises rapidly, sediment supply slows & organic matter accumulates sequestering radioactive materials • Sequence encloses • Forced regressive deposits • Normal regressive (lowstand and highstand) deposits • Transgressive deposits Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    39. 'Transgressive-Regressive' (T-R) sequence (Embry & Johannessen, 1992) • Composite sequence boundary includes subaerial unconformity & marine portion of maximum regressive surface • ‘Normal' & 'forced' regressive deposits are included within the 'regressive systems tract' Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    40. Boundaries & Conceptual Models After Catuneanu, 2007 Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    41. SequenceStratigraphyModelTree After Catuneanu, 2002 Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    42. Application & nomenclature of conceptual models subject to debate • Nomenclature of systems tracts & sequence stratigraphic surfaces • Surfaces that should be ranked as 'sequence boundary‘ • Framework of surfaces, systems tracts, selection of sequence boundaries may vary with approach, available data sets, & depositional setting Good news!! • Sequence stratigraphic method determines depositional setting of section • Identification of genetic units & bounding surfaces mostly model independent. • For both non-marine and marine systems, no matter characterization of 'sequence boundary', these boundaries envelope sedimentary section as through-going physical surface from basin margin to depocenter Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    43. Caveats • Sequence stratigraphic surfaces serve, at least in part, as boundaries between different genetic types of deposit • Not all data lend themselves to identification of all sequence stratigraphic surfaces • Not all sequence stratigraphic surfaces are present in every depositional section • Depositional settings of nearshore to just offshore generate an array of depositional and erosional surfaces, many of incorporated into sequence stratigraphy • In contrast, within either fluvial and/or deep-water systems, conditions favor formation of fewer key bounding sequence stratigraphic surfaces Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    44. Why codify ‘rules’ for sequence stratigraphic nomenclature? • We use common terms and know their meaning • Have a standard hierarchy of subdivisions • Have a uniform methodology • Guidance for revision • Teaching resource: each new generation of students & practitioners have a common understanding Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    45. Terms to Define • Surfaces Separate layered clastic and carbonate sedimentary strata into genetically related packages, system tracts • System Tract Specific three-dimensional facies assemblages of common genetic origin, associated with unconfined geometric architecture & interpreted as formed during phases of a relative sea-level cycle • Conceptual Models Explains configuration of surfaces and geometries that occur in layered sedimentary record in terms of: • Basinal setting • Rates of sediment supply & erosion (accumulation) • Eustasy • Tectonic movement Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    46. Terms to Define - Surfaces Separate layered clastic & carbonate sedimentary strata into genetically related packages, or system tracts • Subaerial unconformity • Correlative conformity (sensu Posamentier, and sensu Hunt and Tucker; the former have renamend Posamentier’s CC as the “basal surface of forced regression”). (Two different surfaces). • Regressive surface of marine erosion • Maximum regressive surface • Maximum flooding surface • Transgressive ravinement surfaces Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    47. Terms to Define – Systems Tracts Specific three-dimensional facies assemblages of common genetic origin, associated with unconfined geometric architecture & interpreted as formed during phases of a relative sea-level cycle • Falling Stage Systems Tract (FSST) • Lowstand Systems Tract (LST) • Transgressive Systems Tract (TST) • Highstand Systems Tract (HST) • Regressive System Tract • Low-accommodation systems Tract • High-accommodation Systems Tract • Forced regression • Normal regression • Transgression Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    48. Terms to Define – Conceptual Models Models that explain surfaces & geometries of layered sediments in terms of basinal setting, rates of supply & erosion (accumulation), eustasy, and tectonics • Depositional sequence model • Genetic Stratigraphic sequence model • Transgressive-Regressive sequence model Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    49. Definitions – Points to consider • Definition • Alternate terms • Origin of Feature • Absolute time or Fuzzy time significance if any? Sequence Stratigraphy Defined

    50. "What's in a name? That which we call a rose. By any other name would smell as sweet.“Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet (II, ii, 1-2) WHAT, YOU THINK I’M AN IDIOT? OF COURSE I WROTE DOWN WHAT WENT WHERE. OH….. WAIT…… IS THAT AN “H” OR AN “I” Sequence Stratigraphy Defined