Middle Miocene to present sediment transport and deposits in the southeastern Weddell Sea, Antarctica

Xiaoxia.Huang [ at ] awi.de


Understanding the transport and deposition of sediments along the Antarctic continental shelves helps to provide constraints on past ice sheet dynamics. Seismic stratigraphic and scientific drilling data from the Antarctic continental margins have provided much direct evidence concerning ice sheet evolution and sedimentation history. In this study, we describe a series of sedimentary features along the continental margin of the southeastern Weddell Sea to constrain glacial-influenced sedimentation processes from the Middle Miocene to the present. The Crary Trough Mouth Fan (CTMF), channel systems, Mix-system turbidity-contourites are investigated by using seismic reflection, sub-bottom profiler, and results from ODP Site 693. The sinuous, NE-SW-oriented turbidity-contourites are characterized by bathymetric highs that are more than 150 km wide, 700 km long, and have a sediment thickness of up to 2 km. The unique sedimentation environment of the southeastern Weddell Sea is controlled by a large catchment area and its fast (paleo-) ice streams feeding the Filchner Ronne Ice Shelf, turbidity/bottom currents as well as sea level changes. A remarkable increase in mass transport deposits (MTDs) in the Late Miocene and Early Pliocene strata has been related to, ice sheet loading, eustatic sea level fall, earthquakes, and overpressure of rapid sediment accumulation. Our seismic records also imply that fluctuations of East Antarctic ice sheet similar to those that occurred during the last glacial cycle might have been typical for southeastern Weddell Sea during glacial periods since the Late Miocene or even earlier.

Item Type
Primary Division
Primary Topic
Peer revision
ISI/Scopus peer-reviewed
Publication Status
Eprint ID
DOI 10.1016/j.gloplacha.2016.03.002

Cite as
Huang, X. and Jokat, W. (2016): Middle Miocene to present sediment transport and deposits in the southeastern Weddell Sea, Antarctica , Global and Planetary Change, 139 , pp. 211-225 . doi: 10.1016/j.gloplacha.2016.03.002



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