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Ten years of studies on Maryland's inner Continental Margin and coastal bays

Marine Georesources and Geotechnology

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, , and
DOI: 10.1080/106411999273792

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Abstract

During the past ten years of the Association of American State Geologists-Mineral Management Service Continental Margins Program, the Maryland Geological Survey investigated the sedimentological, paleontological, stratigraphical and geophysical character of Maryland's inner continental shelf. Based on seismic records and sedimentological analyses completed during the first four years, a late Quaternary stratigraphic model was developed. Five distinct stratigraphic units were identified and described on the Maryland inner shelf. These units represent late Pleistocene interglacial deposits, the oldest of which corresponds to pre-Illinoian (oxygen-isotope stages 7 and/or 9) transgressive shelf sands. Overlying the Q1 unit, the Q2 unit is a 6-meter thick mud sequence of oxygen-isotope stage 5 (128-75 ka) age. Units Q3 and Q4 representing fluvial and leading edge estuarine deposits (oxygen-isotope stages 4, 3 and 2) filled numerous paleochannels that were incised into units Q2 and Q1. Modern trailing-edge transgressive shelf shoals (Unit Q5) discontinuously cap the sequence. The 5th and 6th years studies reported on the economic minerals of surficial and cored sediments. Vibracores collected off the Maryland's shelf during previous studies were analyzed for mineral types and abundances, weight percent of general size fractions, and heavy mineral (HM) content. Mineralogic maturity indices were compiled to correlate the THM and economic heavy minerals (EHM) abundances with position offshore, sediment type, and the indices themselves. For the 7th year, the Maryland Geological Survey re-examined geophysical records and lithological data originally collected by the Army Corps of Engineers to locate and assess beach fill borrow areas for the Ocean City Beach Replenishment Project. Data from 163 vibracores and over 300 kilometers of high-resolution seismic profile records collected off Ocean City, Maryland, supported the stratigraphic model developed by MGS during the first four years of the AASG-MMS program. The Maryland coastal bays became the focus of study during the 8th and 9th years during which seismic records, cores and surficial sediment were collected in Isle of Wight and Assawoman Bays. Shallow pretransgression surface was mapped, relating the existing streams to offshore paleochannels. The tenth year study focused on developing a repository for vibracores collected on Maryland's inner continental shelf.During the past ten years of the Association of American State Geologists-Mineral Management Service Continental Margins Program, the Maryland Geological Survey investigated the sedimentological, paleontological, stratigraphical and geophysical character of Maryland's inner continental shelf. Based on seismic records and sedimentological analysis completed during the first four years, a late quaternary stratigraphic model was developed. Five distinct stratigraphic units were identified and described on the Maryland inner shelf. These units represent late Pleistocene interglacial deposits, the oldest of which corresponds to pre-Illinoian transgressive shelf sands.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Ten years of studies on Maryland's inner Continental Margin and coastal bays
Series title:
Marine Georesources and Geotechnology
DOI:
10.1080/106411999273792
Volume
17
Issue:
2-3
Year Published:
1999
Language:
English
Publisher:
Taylor & Francis Ltd
Publisher location:
London, United Kingdom
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
Marine Georesources and Geotechnology
First page:
127
Last page:
137
Number of Pages:
11