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CEG1603 : Sedimentology and Stratigraphy

  • Offered for Year: 2020/21
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Cees van der Land
  • Lecturer: Dr Sanem Acikalin Cartigny
  • Owning School: Natural and Environmental Sciences
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 2 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0


Rocks record time and processes: the structure of different rock units and their composition provide you with an archive about the conditions that prevailed when the rocks were formed and about the events that happened after the formation of these rocks. In ISR, we will focus on how to decipher this information from the sedimentary record. To make such interpretations, you will use information collected at the surface of the Earth, in particular using geological maps and outcrop material. Students will be introduced to the physical, chemical, and biological processes typical of modern sedimentary depositional environments and be able to identify the geological products of these processes in terms of the textures, structures, and mineral composition in ancient sedimentary strata. Students will be able to interpret and predict the complex material, time, and space relationships of sedimentary strata as revealed by lithologic, fossil, relative time, radiometric, and geometric features preserved in the sedimentary record.

Outline Of Syllabus

This course introduces the concepts that are employed in the interpretation of the depositional environments of ancient sedimentary rocks. To give you the skills and knowledge necessary to use surface information to image the subsurface and reconstruct the geological history of an area, ISR builds on a combination of lectures, practical and field work, building on skills developed in the “Geological structures and mapping” and “Residential field course” modules. Lectures will introduce you to the basic principles of reconstructing ancient depositional environments, stratigraphy and structure. The lectures will be complemented with practicals using rock samples, maps and case studies which will illustrate the topics addressed during the lectures.

Lectures and tutorials (1 hour each).
Examples of subjects: Introduction to stratigraphy and mapping interpretation techniques, sediment textures (microscopic to outcrop to satellite scale), sediment transport – Physics of sedimentation, introduction to fluid dynamics, siliciclastic and carbonate rocks – modern and ancient environments, paleontology – significance of the fossil record, depositional environments (and sea level change), facies associations and sequence stratigraphy, sedimentary basins and fossil fuels

Practicals (2 hours each).
Classification and interpretation of modern and ancient sedimentary rocks (microscopy), sedimentary structures, case study integrating core observations (recognition of textures, interpretation of depositional environment, etc.) across a typical sedimentary basin.

2 one day field trips visiting key sedimentary sequences in the NE of England.

Teaching Methods

Module leaders are revising this content in light of the Covid 19 restrictions.
Revised and approved detail information will be available by 17 August.

Assessment Methods

Module leaders are revising this content in light of the Covid 19 restrictions.
Revised and approved detail information will be available by 17 August.

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