The stratigraphic filter and bias in measurement of geologic rates

Geophysical Research Letters
By: , and 

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Abstract

Erosion and deposition rates estimated from the stratigraphic record frequently exhibit a power-law dependence on measurement interval. This dependence can result from a power-law distribution of stratigraphic hiatuses. By representing the stratigraphic filter as a stochastic process called a reverse ascending ladder, we describe a likely origin of power-law hiatuses, and thus, rate scaling. While power-law hiatuses in certain environments can be a direct result of power-law periods of stasis (no deposition or erosion), they are more generally the result of randomness in surface fluctuations irrespective of mean subsidence or uplift. Autocorrelation in fluctuations can make hiatuses more or less heavy-tailed, but still exhibit power-law characteristics. In addition we show that by passing stratigraphic data backward through the filter, certain statistics of surface kinematics from their formative environments can be inferred.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title The stratigraphic filter and bias in measurement of geologic rates
Series title Geophysical Research Letters
DOI 10.1029/2011GL047118
Volume 38
Year Published 2011
Language English
Publisher American Geophysical Union
Publisher location Washington, D.C.
Contributing office(s) Columbia Environmental Research Center
Description Article L11405; 4 p.
First page 1
Last page 4
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