3D seismic evidence of internal structure within Tampen Slide deposits on the North Sea Fan: are chaotic deposits that chaotic?

J. Gafeira, D. Long, R. Scrutton, D. Evans

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The seismic character of slide deposits is typically described as structureless or chaotic. However, 3D seismic data from the northern flank of the North Sea Fan reveal recognizable internal, penetrative structures within the Tampen Slide deposits. The study of its seismic attributes allowed an integrated characterization of the slide deposits and has shown distinctive acoustic fabrics, both at the top and base of the slide deposit, which are interpreted to be the expression of internal deformation structures. Based on their geometry, four main seismic fabric types have been defined: anastomosing, curvilinear, rectilinear and wispy. The spatial distribution of the fabric was mainly controlled by a topographic high present on the sea-bed at the time of the gravitational collapse, which influenced the transport of material. Areas of distinct fabrics are thought to reflect different flow behaviour during the latest stages of the mass movement and could be considered kinematic indicators. The results give new insights into the transport and deformation processes of submarine mass movements and highlight the potential of detailed analysis of 3D seismic data.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)605-616
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of the Geological Society
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - May 2010

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