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Open-File Report 01-190

The STRATAFORM Project: U.S. Geological Survey Geotechnical Studies

By Diane L. Minasian, Homa J. Lee, Jaques Locat, Kevin M. Orzech, Gregory R. Martz, and Kenneth Israel

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This report presents physical property logs of core samples from an offshore area near Eureka, CA. The cores were obtained as part of the STRATAFORM Program (Nittrouer and Kravitz, 1995, 1996), a study investigating how present sedimentation and sediment transport processes influence long-term stratigraphic sequences preserved in the geologic record. The core samples were collected during four separate research cruises to the northern California study area, and data shown in the logs of the cores were collected using a multi-sensor whole core logger. The physical properties collected are useful in identifying stratigraphic units, ground-truthing acoustic imagery and sub-bottom profiles, and in understanding mass movement processes.

STRATA FORmation on Margins was initiated in 1994 by the Office of Naval Research, Marine Geology and Geophysics Department as a coordinated multi-investigator study of continental-margin sediment transport processes and stratigraphy (Nittrouer and Kravitz, 1996). The program is investigating the stratigraphic signature of the shelf and slope parts of the continental margins, and is designed to provide a better understanding of the sedimentary record and a better prediction of strata. Specifically, the goals of the STRATAFORM Program are to (Nittrouer and Kravitz, 1995):

  • determine the geological relevance of short-term physical processes that erode, transport, and deposit particles and those processes that subsequently rework the seabed over time scales more than 100 years.
  • improve capabilities for identifying the processes that form the strata observed within the upper ~100 m of the seabed commonly representing 104-106 years of sedimentation.
  • synthesize this knowledge and bridge the gap between time scales of sedimentary processes and those of sequence stratigraphy.

The STRATAFORM Program is divided into studies of the continental shelf and the continental slope; the geotechnical group within the U.S. Geological Survey provides support to both parts of the project.

First posted July 20, 2003

For additional information, contact:
Contact Information, Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center
U.S. Geological Survey
Pacific Science Center
400 Natural Bridges Drive
Santa Cruz, CA 95060

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Suggested citation:

Minasian, Diane L., Lee, Homa J., Locat, Jaques, Orzech, Kevin M., Martz, Gregory R., Israel, Kenneth, 2001, The STRATAFORM Project: U.S. Geological Survey Geotechnical Studies: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 01-190,

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