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Multi-scale slope instabilities along the Nile deep-sea fan, Egyptian margin: A general overview

Abstract : The Nile deep-sea fan (NDSF), turbiditic system reaching a size of about 90,000 km2, has been investigated since 1998 by several geophysical methods (multibeam bathymetry, backscatter imagery, seismic data, 3–5 kHz echo-sounding). The analysis of this important data set evidenced that the NDSF is the locus of numerous multi-scale slope instabilities. Three main types of instabilities have been defined, mainly on the basis of their size or origin. (1) First type of instabilities related to the generalized gravity spreading of the Plio-Quaternary deep-sea fan on Messinian salt layers. This global spreading is accommodated by numerous localized slides. (2) Second type of instabilities correspond to giant mass movements probably triggered either by earthquakes, fluids, or climate and eustatic oscillations. Finally, (3) third type of instabilities correspond either to localized levee liquefactions or to thin-skinned slides on the steep slopes of the Eratosthenes seamount. The deposits generated by these slope movements greatly participate in the building of the NDSF. The characterization of these different instabilities, in a petroleum province as the NDSF, has important implications in terms of risk assessments when considering drilling operations.
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Submitted on : Friday, July 3, 2009 - 5:46:37 PM
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Lies Loncke, Virginie Gaullier, Laurence Droz, Emmanuelle Ducassou, Sébastien Migeon, et al.. Multi-scale slope instabilities along the Nile deep-sea fan, Egyptian margin: A general overview. Marine and Petroleum Geology, Elsevier, 2009, 26 (5), pp.633-646. ⟨10.1016/j.marpetgeo.2008.03.010⟩. ⟨insu-00401679⟩



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