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Storm-reworked shallow-marine fans in the Middle Triassic Baise area, South China

Wang, Jiahao, Xie, Xinong, Pang, Xiong, Liu, Baojun
Sedimentary geology 2017 v.349 pp. 33-45
Crinoidea, fossils, gravity, sand, sandstone, storms, China
Shallow-marine fans have been analyzed for sedimentary characteristics and genetic mechanisms far less commonly than deep-marine fans. Based on outcrop observations, this study reveals that large-scale submarine fans in the Middle Triassic Baise area, south China, consisted of a braided channel-levee facies complex in the inner fans; sinuous channel-levee facies complex, overbank facies and crevasse splay facies in the medial fans; and sand sheet facies in the outer fans, which present different lithology assemblages and depositional successions. The lithofacies of dominant massive sandstone, secondary graded sandstone and laminated sandstone from bottom to top is similar to the Bouma sequence, indicative of gravity flow processes. However, the laminated sandstones mostly bear sedimentary structures of gutter casts, wave-generated ripple marks, hummocky cross-bedding, wave-generated cross-bedding and ripple bedding, and were thus attributed to frequent storm reworking processes. Moreover, discontinuous deposition recorded by abrupt sediment grain-size changes, distinct interfaces and divergent paleocurrent orientations occurred between the laminated sandstones and the underlying massive (or graded) sandstones. Accordingly, storm reworking processes together with abundant fossils of Daonella, Ammonite and Crinoidea indicate a shallow-marine paleo-environment. As a whole, this study provides a good example of large-scale shallow-marine fans and laminated sandstones resulted from storm reworking.