DOI: 10.1111/ter.12661 ISSN: 0954-4879

Predictable time preservation on passive continental margins revealed from forward stratigraphic models

Sarah E. Baumgardner, Andrew S. Madof, Ashley D. Harris, Alicia C. M. Kahn
  • Geology


Although the majority of the world's sedimentary basins are located along passive continental margins, the link between their stratigraphy and time architecture has not been fully investigated in three dimensions. Here, using a 3D numerical forward stratigraphic model, we report a previously unidentified trend: an increase in temporal completeness from the shelf to the upper slope and a reduction towards the basin floor. Sedimentation rates from our results are consistent with those measured from a global dataset; our results are also consistent with a chronostratigraphically well‐constrained subsurface example: the Eocene of the Santos Basin, offshore Brazil. Because our results reproduce both globally and locally observed time‐preservation trends, we suggest the use of such models to inform time architecture in the context of surface and subsurface accumulations. Applying these concepts will not only provide a spatiotemporal framework for passive‐margin settings but will provide a more complete understanding of the inherently incomplete geological record.

More from our Archive