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I will review patterns of deep-water channel fill stratigraphy, based largely on outcrop investigations of Upper Cretaceous units in southern Chile (Tres Pasos Formation, Magallanes Basin). Linking observations from Chile to those from many other basins around the world, I will identify a series of channel fill characteristics that have been unsatisfactorily explained to date. To demonstrate a relatively poorly established link between sedimentary processes and stratigraphic products in deep-water channel systems, I will compare deep-water channels and their deposits to the more comprehensive meandering river facies model. I will then introduce observations of the modern Bute Inlet submarine channel system (British Columbia, Canada), including time-lapse bathymetry data, which reveals that upstream migrating knickpoints are the most important mechanism of deep-water channel maintenance. These observations inspire reinterpretation of the stratigraphic record in Chile, providing a unique opportunity to link sedimentary processes to products. In addition to the fundamental relevance of this work to understanding deep-water sedimentary systems, the outcomes of the analyses are useful for multi-scale predictions of connectivity in subsurface reservoirs.
Steve Hubbard joined the faculty in the Department of Geoscience at the University of Calgary in 2006, shortly after completing his PhD at Stanford University. Prior to his PhD he obtained BSc and MSc degrees at the University of Alberta and worked as a geologist at Shell Canada. His research, teaching, and student mentorship is focused on topics in siliciclastic sedimentology and stratigraphy, as well as applications to petroleum geology. He specializes in the processes and products of channelized depositional systems.
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