Articles | Volume 13, issue 1
01 Sep 1994
 | 01 Sep 1994

Graphic correlation and sequence stratigraphy in the Palaeogene of NW Europe

J. E. Neal, J. A. Stein, and J. H. Gamber

Abstract. A sequence stratigraphic analysis of well log, seismic, and biostratigraphic data has documented a pattern of cyclic sedimentation for the Palaeogene of the Central North Sea. Previously published research has also documented cyclic sedimentation related to sea level changes. Integrating Central North Sea subsurface sections with Palaeogene outcrop from NW Europe, using sequence stratigraphic first principles and the graphic correlation method, has produced a chronostratigraphic framework for the Palaeogene of NW Europe.

Northwestern Europe basins (London–Hampshire, Paris, and Belgian) have shallow marine to nonmarine environments, revealing basinward and landward fades shifts indicating sea level changes. The problem correlating NW Europe with North Sea deposits has been addressed by correlating a biostratigraphy to the deep water deposits outcropping in Denmark. Once a biostratigraphy joining the subsurface and outcrops is built, key bounding surfaces are correlated between basins. We find that: (1) sedimentation in the deep basin occurs as depositional pulses, separated by time-correlative biostratigraphic data terraces (hiatal intervals), which correspond to persistent seismic reflectors; (2) not all sequence boundaries are resolvable by graphic correlation, but the method brackets packages defined by seismic, log interpretation and biostratigraphy; and (3) correlation with outcrops reveals the true significance of the hiatal intervals.