Sedimentation rate and mississippi delta sediment instability

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date



Mississippi Delta platform sediments are incipiently unstable because of extremely high sedimentation rates, relatively steep bottom slopes, and the formation of biogenic methane. Thus sediment failure is easily initiated and large quantities of sediment may be moved down slope en masse. The region is a source of large quantities of oil and gas, however, the recurring mass movements adversely affect recovery of those resources. To better understand these failures and, thereby, improve resource management, a simplified analytical model that treats the failure mechanism as a sedimentation and slope oversteepening process and sediment motion as a propagating kinematic wave is developed. The model allows estimation of sedimentation rates necessary to initiate slope failures for a range of observed depths of basal shear planes along which the failures occur. Model results indicate that slope oversteepening is viable failure mechanism.

Publication Source (Journal or Book title)

Proceedings of the Third (1993) International Offshore and Polar Engineering Conference

First Page


Last Page


This document is currently not available here.