An integrated model of extrusive sand injectites in cohesionless sediments

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Abstract

Clastic injection and surface expression of subsurface sediment remobilization is a phenomenon which is becoming increasingly recognized. However, understanding of the physical mechanisms that control these features remains limited, dominated by inference from outcrop and seismic studies. Here, this limitation is addressed through a set of experiments focused on the development and evolution of fluidization features in non-cohesive bedded sequences. Fluidization and the onset of piping are shown to occur progressively through a sequence of discrete phases, with initial void formation, development of infiltration horizons, rupture and finally pipe formation. Critically, the style of piping, the stability of piping and the temporal evolution of venting are shown to exhibit considerable variability. In particular, pipes may either be stable or very mobile, migrating laterally over large distances; these produce deposits that are typically interpreted in outcrop as being the product of en masse liquefaction rather than localized, dynamic fluidization. These differing elements are synthesized to produce a model of sand extrudites. In addition, the implications of this model are explored.

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