Comparative Analysis of Ancient and Modern Carbonate Deposition

This topic submitted by Karen Immel ( at 12:19 PM on 3/31/04.

A sobering view of a Two-toed Sloth as it makes its way along utility lines on our way to Monteverde Preserve. This is what can happen to animals faced with disappearing habitat.

Tropical Field Courses -Western Program-Miami University

The Delaware Basin of New Mexico and Texas is one of the most studied ancient shallow marine carbonate environments. In order to understand the types of sedimentary processes that occur in this ancient setting, parallels can be drawn from observing the modern carbonate depositional environment of the Bahama Bank.

I. Introduction: What Similarities are there in the structure and settings of the Delaware Basin of New Mexico and the Modern Bahama Bank?

II. Stratigrafic Problems and Resemblances
A. Location
B. Preservation Potential
C. Lack of Clastic Imput
D. Shallow Marine Environments

III. Tectonic Controls
A. Closing Intracratonic Basin
B. Tong of the Ocean

IV. Striking Similarities
A. Climates
B. Reef Structures and Slopes
C. Turbidites and Debris Flows
D. Ooids
E. Beach Rock and Pisolites

V. Conclusion: How do these similarities and differences help reconstruct environments of deposition?

Curran, H. Allen and Brian White. Terrestrial and Shallow Marine Geology of the Bahamas and Bermuda. Special Paper: Geological Society of America, 1995.
Scholle, Peter A. A Color Illustrated Guide To Carbonate Rock Constituents, Textures, Cements and Porosities. The American Association of Petroleum Geologists, 1978.
Matthews, Robert K. Dynamic Stratigraphy: An Introduction to Sedimentation and Stratigraphy. Prentice-Hall Inc., 1984
Harris, Paul M. and Grover, George A. “Subsurface and Outcrop Examination of the Capitan Shelf Margin, Northern Delaware Basin.” SEPM Core Workshop No. 13, April 23, 1989.
Hardie, Lawrence A. Sedimentation on the Modern Carbonate Tidal Flats of Northwest Andros Island, Bahamas. Johns Hopkins University Studies in Geology; no 22, 1977.
Tucker, Maurice E. and Paul V. Wright Carbonate Sedimentology. Blackwell Science Ltd., 1990.
Rohr, David M. “The Cibolo Reef Block Revisited.” Abstracts with Programs: Geological Society of America, March 2002, Vol. 34, Issue 3, pp. 34.
Harris, Paul M. “The Enigma of Prograding Steep, High relief Carbonate platform Margins.” Abstract with Programs: Geological Society of America, November 2001, Vol. 33, Issue 6, pp. 409.


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