Records of continental slope sediment flow morphodynamic responses to gradient and active faulting from integrated AUV and ROV data, offshore Palos Verdes, southern California Borderland

Marine Geology
By: , and 

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Abstract

Variations in seabed gradient are widely acknowledged to influence deep-water deposition, but are often difficult to measure in sufficient detail from both modern and ancient examples. On the continental slope offshore Los Angeles, California, autonomous underwater vehicle, remotely operated vehicle, and shipboard methods were used to collect a dense grid of high-resolution multibeam bathymetry, chirp sub-bottom profiles, and targeted sediment core samples that demonstrate the influence of seafloor gradient on sediment accumulation, depositional environment, grain size of deposits, and seafloor morphology. In this setting, restraining and releasing bends along the active right-lateral Palos Verdes Fault create and maintain variations in seafloor gradient. Holocene down-slope flows appear to have been generated by slope failure, primarily on the uppermost slope (~ 100–200 m water depth). Turbidity currents created a low relief (< 10 m) channel, up-slope migrating sediment waves (λ = ~ 100 m, h  2 m), and a series of depocenters that have accumulated up to 4 m of Holocene sediment. Sediment waves increase in wavelength and decrease in wave height with decreasing gradient. Integrated analysis of high-resolution datasets provides quantification of morphodynamic sensitivity to seafloor gradients acting throughout deep-water depositional systems. These results help to bridge gaps in scale between existing deep-sea and experimental datasets and may provide constraints for future numerical modeling studies.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Records of continental slope sediment flow morphodynamic responses to gradient and active faulting from integrated AUV and ROV data, offshore Palos Verdes, southern California Borderland
Series title Marine Geology
DOI 10.1016/j.margeo.2016.10.001
Volume 393
Year Published 2016
Language English
Publisher Elsevier
Contributing office(s) Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center
Description 20 p.
First page 47
Last page 66