TitleHistory of pore pressure build up and slope instability in mud-dominated sediments of Ursa Basin, Gulf of Mexico continental slope
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2010
AuthorsUrgeles R., Locat J., Sawyer D.E, Flemings P.B, Dugan B., Binh N.TT
Conference NameSubmarine Mass Movements and Their Consequences - 4th International Symposium
PublisherKluwer Academic Publishers
ISBN Number9789048130702
KeywordsBasin modeling, Pore pressure, Scientific drilling, Slope instability, Submarine landslides
AbstractThe Ursa Basin, at ∼1, 000 m depth on the Gulf of Mexico continental slope, contains numerous Mass Transport Deposits (MTDs) of Pleistocene to Holocene age. IODP Expedition 308 drilled three sites through several of these MTDs and encompassing sediments. Logs, sedimentological and geotechnical data were collected at these sites and are used in this study for input to basin numerical models. The objective of this investigation was to understand how sedimentation history, margin architecture and sediment properties couple to control pore pressure build-up and slope instability at Ursa. Measurements of porosity and stress state indicate that fluid overpressure is similar at the different sites (in the range of 0.5-0.7) despite elevated differences in sedimentation rates. Modeling results indicate that this results from pore pressure being transferred from regions of higher to lower overburden along an underlying more permeable unit: the Blue Unit. Overpressure started to develop at ∼53 ka, which induced a significant decrease in FoS from 45ka, especially where overburden is lower. © Springer Science + Business Media B.V. 2010.