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Dynamics and Deposition of Sediment-Bearing Multi- Pulsed Flows and Geological Implication

Ho, Viet Luan; Dorrell, Robert M.; Keevil, Gareth M.; Thomas, Robert E.; Burns, Alan D.; Baas, Jaco H.; McCaffrey, William D.


Viet Luan Ho

Gareth M. Keevil

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Dr Robert Thomas
Senior Research Fellow in Geomorphology and Flood Risk

Alan D. Burns

Jaco H. Baas

William D. McCaffrey


Copyright © 2019, SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geology) Previous studies on dilute, multi-pulsed, subaqueous saline flows have demonstrated that pulses will inevitably advect forwards to merge with the flow front. On the assumption that pulse merging occurs in natural-scale turbidity currents, it was suggested that multi-pulsed turbidites that display vertical cycles of coarsening and fining would transition laterally to single-pulsed, normally graded turbidites beyond the point of pulse merging. In this study, experiments of dilute, single- and multi-pulsed sediment-bearing flows (turbidity currents) are conducted to test the linkages between downstream flow evolution and associated deposit structure. Experimental data confirm that pulse merging occurs in laboratory-scale turbidity currents. However, only a weak correspondence was seen between longitudinal variations in the internal flow dynamics and the vertical structure of deposits; multi-pulsed deposits were documented, but transitioned to single-pulsed deposits before the pulse merging point. This early transition is attributed to rapid sedimentation-related depletion of the coarser-grained suspended fraction in the laboratory setting, whose absence may have prevented the distal development of multi-pulsed deposits; this factor complicates estimation of the transition point in natural-scale turbidite systems.


Ho, V. L., Dorrell, R. M., Keevil, G. M., Thomas, R. E., Burns, A. D., Baas, J. H., & McCaffrey, W. D. (2019). Dynamics and Deposition of Sediment-Bearing Multi- Pulsed Flows and Geological Implication. Journal of Sedimentary Research, 8(11), 1127-1139.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Aug 21, 2019
Publication Date Jan 1, 2019
Deposit Date Sep 25, 2019
Publicly Available Date Oct 27, 2022
Journal Journal of Sedimentary Research
Print ISSN 1527-1404
Publisher Society for Sedimentary Geology (SEPM)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 8
Issue 11
Pages 1127-1139
Keywords Multi-pulsed turbidites; Pulsed turbidites; Multi-pulsed flows; Single-pulsed turbidites; Sediment-bearing flows
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©2019 University of Hull

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