In the post below, Glen wrote: "An onshore landslide simply mixes things
up with little sorting."
I don't think this is correct. See R.M. Iverson, The physics of debris
flows, Rev. Geophys. v35 pp245-296 August 1997. This is not my field so
I'm sure there is a better reference but this one should suffice.
The observation, as I understand it, is that coarser grained material
sorts to the edges of both landside and debris flow runouts. I guess it
probably works just like the big nuts in the mixed nuts can floating to
From: email@example.com [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] On
Behalf Of Glenn Morton
Sent: Sunday, February 10, 2002 6:22 PM
To: Allen Roy; email@example.com
Subject: RE: New Guinea tsunami information.
>From: firstname.lastname@example.org [mailto:email@example.com]On
>Behalf Of Allen Roy
>Sent: Sunday, February 10, 2002 8:47 AM
>There is a simularity with the Haymond deposits in that the tsunami
>deposited consisted of two layers: the bottom one of sand, the top one
>clay/silt. To be sure the quantites of each are certainly different
>the Haymond deposits.
Yes, there are several differences. As you note, the quantities of sand
shale are different in the tsunami deposit. There is the lack of marine
burrows in the tsunami deposit which exist in the Haymond. And most
importantly, the Haymond consistes of 15,000 layers, the tsunami
one pair with very, very little shale. NOw, if the tsunami had deposited
15,000 layers of sand and shale then you might have a case. As it is,
will have to wait several hundred years for the next tsunami at that
The tsunami simply is not analogical to the Haymond.
>The article also makes the following points:
>1. "The recently deposited tsunami sand is believed to have come from
>offshore of the beach as numerous sand dollars were found near the
>of the deposit."
But no burrows.
>2. "Another common characteristic of recently deposited tsunami sand
>normal grading (a decrease in the size of the sand grains from the
>the top in the deposit)"
typical hydrodynamic sorting according to Stoke's Law. This is nothing
>3. "The deposit fined landward (near the shore the sand particles were
>larger than the sand farther inland)."
Once again, this is what Stokes law would predict.
>Lets start with point 1.
>In this case, as the tsunami swept ashore it picked up beach sand
>simultaneously deposited it as it swept inland. What if, instead
>of a sandy
>beach, the wave had swept across a muddy delta? What would be the
>load carried by the wave? What would be the major deposition?
True, but most of it would have remained suspended in the draining
Stoke's law would not let it settle as rapidly as you require for a
>The point being that tsunami deposition reflects the compsition of
>across which the tsunami came as it swept ashore. So it could consist
>lots of sand/little clay, or some sand/some clay, or little sand/lots
There are several tsunami's per year. Find one with little sand and lots
clay. I don't think you can.
>One of the major means of identifying turbidite deposition is the fact
>it has normal grading (although reverse grading is sometime noted),
>sand through silt to clay. At the New Guinea tsunami depsition site
>deposit displays "normal grading" (including clay/silt on top). This
>confirms an off hand statement from a non-creationary geologist I
>who said that tsunami and turbidite depositions were nearly
Unamed sources, like with newspapers, are untrustworthy. Sources please.
>The tsunami deposition also display landward fining. It is curios to
>that ALL Grand Canyon formations display horizontal fining in one
>or another. I wonder if anyone has checked to see if the Haymond
>layers graded horzontally. I would not be the least bit surpried to
>that they do grade horizontally.
Of course they grade. Almost all clastic beds do. That doesn't mean that
Haymond was a tsunami deposit. Your tsunami deposit has little shale and
>> Thirdly, this is a tsunami deposit which is above sea level which
>> shale-containing water to flow down through the porous sand as noted
>> Below sea level, this won't happen. The water will not flow through
>> like it does on land.
>This is a good point. I like it! It makes deposition of clay/silt
>faster than I had thought. It is still note worthy that the clay/silt
>there because the tsunami picked it up and carried it into place.
Don't jump on it for a marine deposit, which is what the Haymond is.
Landslides on land don't sort th way that turbidites do. In the water,
turbulence separates the shale from the sand with the sand flowing close
the water bottom and the shale going into suspension and depositing over
vastly larger area. Only over a long time can shale be deposited on top
the sand in a marine environment. An onshore landslide simply mixes
up with little sorting.
>> So, this has nothing to do with a turbidite.
>If it is true that turbidite and tsunami deposits are nearly
>indistinguishable, then whos to say that the Haymond deposits are not
>tsunami rather than turbidite deposits?
Tsunami's and turbidites are distinguishable. You are depending upon
some unnamed, unreferenced, unknown and possibly non-existent person is
supposed or claimed to have said, in order to support your argument.
Geologists can tell the difference between marine and land deposits and
between tsunamis and turbidites.
This is from R. Peters et al, ITS 2001 proceedings "An Overview of
Deposits along the Cascadia Margin," p. 479
"Tsunami deposits may be distinguished from river deposits by disntinct
biological markers, spatial distribution, sediment characteristics, and
geochemistry. Tsunami deposits contain marine or brackish water
microfossils while fossils in river deposits, if present, would be fresh
water varieties. Tsunami deposits fine landward, while river deposits
generally fine seaward. The composition texture of the sand grains can
used to determine a coastal or upriver source. Geochemical indicators,
as bromine enrichment, may indicate a marine source."
Turbites and tsunami's fine in opposite directions. Turbidites fine
the sea, tsunamis fine toward the land. Turbidites show burrows and
ichnotraces in the shale above the sand which is thick and tsunami's
as the shale is too thin.
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