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GRAVEL

ISSN 1678-5975

Novembro - 2005

N 3

59-70

Porto Alegre

Sand-Gravel Marine Deposits and Grain-Size Properties


L. R. Martins1,2 & E. G. Barboza2
1
2

COMAR- South West Atlantic Coastal and Marine Geology Group;


Centro de Estudos de Geologia Costeira e Ocenica CECO/IG/UFRGS.

RESUMO
A plataforma continental Atlntica do Rio Grande do Sul e Uruguai
foi utilizada como laboratrio natural para testar as relaes entre propriedades
de tamanho de gro e ambiente sedimentar.
A evoluo Pleistoceno/Holoceno da regio foi intensamente
estudada atravs de um mapeamento detalhado, e de estudos sedimentolgicos
e estratigrficos, oferecendo, dessa forma, uma excelente oportunidade para
esse tipo de trabalho.
Acumulaes de areia e cascalho, vinculadas a nveis de estabilizao
identificados da transgresso Holocnica, localizados nas isbatas de 110-120
e 20-30 metros, fornecem elementos confiveis relacionados com a fonte,
transporte e nvel de energia de deposio e podem ser utilizados como linhas
de evidencias na interpretao ambiental.
ABSTRACT
The Atlantic Rio Grande do Sul (Brazil) and Uruguay inner
continental shelf was used as a natural laboratory to test the relationship
between grain-size properties and sedimentary environment.
The Pleistocene/Holocene evolution of the region was intensively
studied through detailed mapping, sedimentological and stratigraphic research
thus offering an excellent opportunity of developing this type of work.
Sand and gravel deposits linked with identified stillstands of the
Holocene transgression located at 110-120 and 20-30 meters isobath provided
elements related to the source, transport and depositional energy level and can
be used as a tool for environmental interpretation.

Keywords: marine deposits, grain-size, sand-gravel, Holocene.

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Sand-Gravel Marine Deposits and Grain-Size Properties

INTRODUCTION
During
the
last
four
decades,
sedimentologists from of all over world have been
interested in obtaining environmental information
from grain-size analysis of sand and gravel mainly
related with coastal areas. For a partial list of
references (see MARTINS et al., 1997 and
MARTINS, 2003).
Grain-size
distribution
reflects
depositional processes and combined with other
lines of evidence (roundness, sphericity, grain
surface texture, detrital light and heavy minerals,
biogenic components, syngenic minerals etc) could
be
used
for
sedimentary
environment
identification.
Erosion, progradation and reworking of
sediments are important shore and nearshore
processes, and it is necessary to understand the
changes produced near the modern shoreline in
order to interpret the origin and depositional
aspects of the preserved sediments.
The size distribution of sand or sandstone
is one of its fundamental properties, because it
largely determines porosity and permeability,
provides insight to transport processes and has
been used by geologists to determine the
environment of deposition of ancient sandstones. It
is also closely related to the geotechnical properties
of sand.
Our interest is to test in marine modern
sands how well the size distribution properties can
discriminate between old riverine, eolian, beach
sands and gravels occurring along the continental
shelf, as it was studied on the actual adjacent
coastal plain (MARTINS, 1962, 1965, 1967, 2003
and MARTINS et al., 1997).
The data set of CECO/IG/UFRGS is
exceptionally adequate for such a study and offers
promising discrimination for at least five reasons:
a) all the analyzed modern terrigenous sands
were derived from a nearby source of
Pre-Cambrian and Phanerozoic rocks
rather than from multiple, distant sources;
b) the carbonate bioclastic sand and gravel
components are autochtonous;
c) the inner shelf and the coastal area have
been mapped in detail, so that the
environments of deposition of the
sampling area are known with precision
and carefully delimited;
d) these environments were sampled using
closely spaced sites, through the method
of suite samples rather than only few

e)

samples as it is typical in many past


studies;
the laboratory methods of analysis are all
the same, with uniform development at
the CECO/IG/UFRGS laboratories.

DISCUSSION
A large part of published papers is
devoted to understand how riverine, eolian, beach,
lagoon and lake processes transform the grain size
distribution of sand.
In the present exercise, the method
applied to characterize coastal sands and gravels
(beach, dune) are employed on sandy and gravelly
deposits of the inner and outer continental shelf of
southern Rio Grande do Sul (Brazil) and Uruguay
in the influence area of Rio de La Plata, in an
attempt to learn how they fit in similar shallow
marine deposits.
CRONAN (1972) working on polymodal
sediments from the Irish Sea consisting of varying
mixtures of gravel, sand, silt and clay, discussed
the usefulness of the grain-size parameters in
characterizing sedimentary processes.
Zones of positive and negative skewness
alternate in the basin and this behavior can be
largely explained in terms of variations in the
proportions of the various grain-size populations in
the sediments. The strongly positively skewed
sediments consist of sandy gravels in wich the
gravel mode is predominant. As the proportion of
sand increases the sediment becomes less
positively skewed, passes through a zone of zero,
where the gravel and sand modes are subequal and
become negatively skewed as the sand mode
becomes predominant.
Variations in kurtosis can largely be
related to the degree of polymodality of the
sediments. MARTINS (1962) discussed the several
aspects of this statistical measures and established
that the grade of peakness of a grain-size
distribution reveals the relation of the sorting of the
central part of the curve in relation with the coarse
and the fine tail.
When both gravel and sand populations
are present in the sediment in more or less
subequal proportions, the kurtosis value is low
(platicurtic). With the increase of the sand
population, kurtosis value rises and then falls to
near normal as the sand approach unimodality.
According to CRONAN (1972) the interrelations between grain-size parameters found by
FOLK & WARD (1957) in fluvial and by

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Martins & Barboza

MARTINS (1965) in beach/dune environments


also occur in the marine milieu.
In strongly polymodal sediments the
prime influence on skewness is the proportion in
which the various grain-size populations in the
sediments are mixed, and this nature and degree of
the polymodality should be taken into account. In
other words, the alternating negative and positive
skewness reflect the proportions in which the
different modal populations in the sediment are
mixed.
The importance of the grain-size
properties in the sedimentary processes was
responsible for the establishment, in 1964,
(TANNER, 1969) of the Grain Size Study
Committee by the Society of Economic
Paleontologists
and
Mineralogists-SEPM
(currently Society for Sedimentary Geology), that
has been responsible, since then, for the
development of a large amount of discussions and
contributions carried out so far (SIVITSKI, 1991;
BASILIE et al., 2002, 2003; TIPPER, 2003 and
WELLS, 2003).
Several questions arised about the
validity of the available methods to characterize or
discriminate sedimentary processes using grainsize and other textural properties.
SHEA (1974) discussed the allegated
gaps (deficiencies) on clastic particles distributions
and concluded after the analysis of 11.212 samples
from different environments (glacial, fluvial,
eolian, beach, lacustrine, estuarine and marine)
that: a) only a small number of data sets from a
relative few environments and locations have been
considered, b) some data sets have been
misinterpreted, c) a large body of contrary
evidence has been ignored and d) statistically
rigorous techniques were not used.
MARTINS et al. (1997) and MARTINS
(2003) aggregate other field/laboratory reasons for
the failure of a successful interpretation: 1)
inadequate sampling, not representative of the
sedimentary body, 2) inappropriate splitting of the
representative original sample, 3) mechanical
analysis routine without the recommended points
of reference, 4) technicians not well trained to
develop a sometimes exhaustive type of work 5)
erroneous draft of the cumulative curve or other
graphic device and 6) reduced number of samples
to give an overall picture of the studied
sedimentary body.
METHODS
Graphic and moment measures (mean,
standard deviation, skewness, kurtosis) were

61

calculated in detail for each sample, average values


for each environment were computed and Q or R
mode factor analysis was applied to the results.
Mc BRIDE (1971) established that grainsize analysis was developed for one or more of the
following reasons: a) to describe samples in terms
of statistical measures, b) to correlate samples from
similar depositional environments or stratigraphic
units, c) to determine the agent (wind, river, wave,
tide) of transportation and deposition, d) to study
the processes (suspension, traction) of final
deposition and e) to characterize the environment
of deposition (channel, beach, dune, flood plain,
marine).
Special attention was given to the fine
and coarse tails of the size distribution, which is
widely believed to be its environmentally sensitive
part.
Several questions were raised and
examples of these questions include: How well
does the less than 62 micron fraction discriminate
between all environments? Which environments
are most distinct and which overlap the most?
What are the best bivariate combinations of
parameters to distinguish the environments? How
well if all do the results from the studied area
compare with those of other parts of the world?
This type of work is always based on a
large volume of samples to get objective answers
about the environment.
In the region, all the previous studies
regarding grain-size parameters and environment
were developed on modern beach, dune and river
sands occurring along the coastal zone.
The present exercise was developed on
continental shelf sediments related with an
extensive old Pleistocene coastal plain (and its
associated environments) drowned by the
Holocene transgression and somehow submitted
until now to modern hydraulic conditions.

RESULTS
These successive movements were
responsible for the migration of a high energy
shallow zone over the continental shelf that allows
the development of stillstands of the sea level and
the concentration of bioclastic carbonate (shells
and shell debris) forming linear shoals parallel to
the coastline. This situation is also favorable to the
development of calciferous sandstone beachrock
(quartzose sand cemented by calcium carbonate)
and coquina calcirudite (shell fragments
cemented by calcium carbonate) and calcarenite
(carbonate sand cemented by calcium carbonate).

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Sand-Gravel Marine Deposits and Grain-Size Properties

The authigenic activity in the area is


represented by the presence of glauconite
(MARTINS & MARTINS, 1985) and the
occurrence of phosphatic concretions (KLEIN et
al., 1992 and HOSANG & ABREU, 2002).
To test the validity of the grain-size
textural parameters, only psephitic and psamitic
sediments were used.
The five sites chosen were submitted
from moderate to high energy level of deposition
and showed depositional clean graded bedding
which is diagnostic of the presence of storm
surges, reflected through storm layers.

Five areas and their sedimentary facies of


the actual marine environment were chosen to
apply the methodology used on the transitional
coastal sediments (Fig. 1):
a) Outer continental shelf
b) Inner continental shelf
c) Carpinteiro shoal
d) Albardo shoal
e) La Plata shoal
The main properties of the sedimentary
facies occurring in the five places are summarized
in Table 1.

Figure 1. Studied areas.


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63

Table 1. Main Characteristics of the five facies chosen to test grain-size parameters and environment.
FACIES

INNER CONTINENTAL
SHELF
(Rio Grande do Sul Uruguay)
<50 m

OUTER CONTINENTAL
SHELF
(Rio Grande-Torres)
Rio Grande do Sul
>100 m

LA PLATA SHOAL
(Argentina)
Uruguay/Argentina
<50 m.

ALBARDO SHOAL
(Rio Grande do Sul)
Brazil
<50 m

CARPINTEIRO SHOAL
(Rio Grande do Sul)
Brazil
<50 m

CHARACTERISTICS
Quartzose sand (unimodal) with shell debris (bimodal), moderate to well
sorted, negatively skewed, meso to leptocurtic. Described as sand facies
(MARTINS, 1972) or Atlantic facies (LABORDE, 1999), cover old
Pleistocene coastal features (beaches, dunes, barriers, beachridges and
erosional steps) as a transgressive Holocene sand blanket related to migratory
coastal zones, of high energy level of sedimentation.
Relict/palimpsest sequence.
References: MARTINS et al. (1967, 1972, 1978, 1997, 1999, 2003);
LABORDE (1999); MARTINS &URIEN (1979).
Quartzose sand and carbonate sand and gravel of shallow waters, moderate to
well sorted, negative skewed. Bioclastic and terrigenous components showing
graded bedding, indicating presence of storm action over shallow waters at the
sea level 110/120 m.
Relict sequence.
References: MARTINS et al. (1967, 1977, 1989); MARTINS & MARTINS
(1985); DILLENBURG (1990).
Quartzose sand and bioclastic sand and gravel. Bioclastic material formed by
entire and fragmented shells and slabs of beachrock. Occurs as elongated
shoals parallel to de bathymetric contours. Relict feature of an old barrier
island, that closes partially the estuary when the sea level was at 20/30 meters.
References: URIEN & MOUZO (1968); URIEN & OTTMANN (1971);
MARTINS & URIEN (1979); URIEN et al. (1980a e b, 1995); MARTINS et
al. (2003).
Quartzose sand and bioclastic sand and gravel. Poor to well sorted, negatively
skewed. Occurs through elongated shoals parallel to subparallel to the
Pleistocene (relict) and its sedimentary material reworked through Holocene
and modern dynamics.
References: MARTINS et al. (1972); CORRA & PONZI (1978); CALLIARI
et al. (1999).
Calcareous shell fragments, sand and gravel of high calcium carbonate content
associated with terrigenous coarse to fine quartzose relict sand. Quartzose fine
sand with bioclastic ash is well sorted. Medium sand with higher content of
bioclastic gravel is moderately sorted. Beachrock pavement is an important
bottom component.
References: CALLIARI et al. (1994); BUCHMANN & TOMAZELLI (2003).

a) Outer continental shelf


Two coarse textures, quartzose sand and
bioclastic sand and gravel occurs with different
proportions of mud. The cores obtained in the area
(MARTINS et al., 1985) show repeated small
graded bedding of the coarse components
resembling storm layers of high energy shallow
coastal areas. The absence of fines as a matrix is
one of the main difference with the graded layers
found in the continental slope produced by
gravitational flows (MARTINS et al., 1989).
This very interesting sequence is usually
covered by terrigenous mud that was deposited
during the gradual displacement of the coastline in

direction to the continent and subsequent mud


accumulation.
The sometimes intricate pattern of
occurrence is due to the mixture and reworking of
Pleistocene sediments, through the Holocene
transgression.
b) Inner continental shelf
In this sandy facies it is possible to
identify two main textures: clean quartzose sand
and quartzose sand with bioclastic carbonate. The
modal texture class is sand (>50% of the total
sample) but showing sometimes a fine tail (mud), a
coarse tail (bioclastic) or both (mud and
bioclastic).

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Sand-Gravel Marine Deposits and Grain-Size Properties

c) La Plata shoal
One of the most important concentration
of bioclastic rich sand and bioclastic sand and
gravel, related with and ancient coastal barrier,
linked with sea level fluctuations.
d) Carpinteiro shoal
Through
an
OSNLR-COMEMIR
mission, CALLIARI et al. (1994) identified five
textures: 1) muddy fine sand, 2) fine sand with
bioclastics, 3) shelly gravel, 4) shelly gravel and
relict sand and 5) beachrock outcrops. This
sedimentary cover represents another area of the
presence of material from different sources:

terrigenous (quartzose sand), autochtonous


activities (bioclastic sand and gravel) and syngenic
evolutions (beachrock). In this exercise the textures
2, 3 and 4 were used.
e) Albardo shoal
Two components occur in this facies:
carbonate sand gravel (modal texture class 0 to 2.6)
and carbonate and terrigenous sand (modal textural
class 0-1).
The grain size parameters of the five
marine facies are shown on Table 2. Histograms
showing the number of texture classes, modal
classes and its percentages are shown on Figure 2.

Table 2. Grain-size parameters of the studied facies.


GRAIN-SIZE PARAMETERS
AREA
OUTER
CONTINENTAL
SHELF
INNER
CONTINENTAL
SHELF
LA PLATA
SHOAL

CARPINTEIRO
SHOAL

ALBARDO
SHOAL

FACIES
QUARTZOSE SAND WITH
OR WITHOUT SHELL ASH
BIOCLASTIC SAND AND
GRAVEL
CLEAN QUARTZOSE SAND
QUARTZOSE SAND WITH
BIOCLASTIC MATERIAL
QUARTZOSE SAND WITH
BIOCLASTIC MATERIAL
BIOCLASTIC GRAVEL
BIOCLASTIC GRAVEL AND
RELICT COARSE SAND
QUARTZOSE SAND WITH
BIOCLASTIC MATERIAL
BIOCLASTIC GRAVEL
BIOCLASTIC GRAVEL
WITH RELICT COARSE
SAND
BIOCLASTIC SANDY
GRAVEL
BIOCLASTIC COARSE SAND

The chosen area, Rio Grande do Sul,


(Brazil) and Rio de La Plata (Urugay-Argentina)
continental shelf is a gently inclined submerged
platform from 120 to 170 km wide, covered by
sediments composed of relict, palimpsest sands,
modern and relict muds and bioclastic calcareous
debris. The shelf break ranges in depth from 60 to
100 m. In Rio de La Plata the shelf-slope transition
area presents a step or bench, as a relict of a paleocontinental shelf border of the Late Tertiary-Early
Quaternary age, related to an offlapping paleodeltas, built during low sea level stands and then

Mz

SK1

Kg

2-3

0.35-1.00

Negative

Leptocurtic

-1.50-0.50

1.32-0.88

Negative

2-3 (2.61)

0.30-0.52

Negative

Meso to
Leptocurtic
Leptocurtic

2-3 (2.36)

0.98-1.73

Negative

Leptocurtic

>2.0

0.35-1.00

Negative

Leptocurtic

1.0-2.0

0.5-1.00

Negative

Mesocurtic

-3.0-1.0

0.5-1.50

Negative

Platicurtic

3-4

0.35-1.00

Negative

Leptocurtic

-2-2

1.0-2.0

Negative

Meso to
Leptocurtic

0-2

1.0-3.0

Negative

Meso to
Leptocurtic

-4-2

1.0-2.0

Negative

Mesocurtic

-3-3

1.0-2.0

Negative

Mesocurtic

mantled by probably Quaternary and Holocene


prograding sedimentary sequence during the last
lowermost sea level stillstand (URIEN et al.,
1995).
On the modern continental shelf, relicts
of beach ridges, barrier coast and river distributary
channels and deltas are found (URIEN et al.,
1980a e b; MARTINS et al., 1996). Shelf
sediments are predominantly sandy, product of a
succession of Holocene west shifting transgressive
shorelines that form a blanked body. Silty clay

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Martins & Barboza

Figure 2. Representative histograms of the sedimentary facies.

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Sand-Gravel Marine Deposits and Grain-Size Properties

sediments are found, but concentrated to lagoons,


bays and estuaries or inner shelf channels, close to
Rio de La Plata. Shelf lutites are found only on the
Rio Grande do Sul shelf break, as relict of Rio de
La Plata paleochannels into the shelf and
converging to the Rio Grande submarine fan. River
drainage from the nearby Pre-Cambrian plateau,
also with widespread silty sediments onto the outer
continental shelf.
Several fluctuations of the sea level are
presumed to have taken place in the area before
and after the Holocene transgressions, the last
dated around 18,000 BP, which modified
sediments facies distribution and particularly the
topography of the sea bottom with constructive and
destructive features.
The application of this experiment,
obtained through the characterization of the
sediments present in the transitional coastal
environments,
using
grain-size
statistical
parameters in the sedimentary cover of the adjacent
continental shelf, represents a constant challenge
for the sedimentologists devoted to textural
properties of the sedimentary rocks and sediments.
With the increasing knowledge of the Quaternary
evolutive history of the area, an adequate
understanding of the transgressive/regressive
episodes, stillstands sea-level stabilizations and
prevalent sedimentary pattern, many questions
arose like: Which was the behavior of the
transitional sediments environments during the
episodes of subaerial exposition of the actual
continental shelf? Which were the effects caused
by the drowning of these environments in the
properties of the sediments? What fundamental
aspects that the so called relict sediments maintain
in its consequent palimpsest correspondents? Is it
possible to evaluate the depositional energy level
of these deposits through the application of the
traditional statistical techniques? The obtained
results have reliable validity for a wide
application?
In analyzing grain-size frequency
distributions, the most common measures used are
arithmetic mean (or average) and standard
deviation (or degree of scatter about the mean)
while skewness and kurtosis are also used for
special purposes and usually are diagnostic in the
comparison of sediments of different sedimentary
environments, or peculiarities of the sediments
occurring in the same environment (MARTINS,
1967).
Figure 3 shows the graphic significance
of skewness (curves A and B) and kurtosis (curves
C and D) in relation to the normal distribution
(curve E). A normal frequency distribution is a

continuous, bell-shaped curve that is symmetrical,


and its arithmetic mean, mode and median are
numerically equivalent, and is known as a
Gaussian distribution. Geometrically independent
of the sorting grade, it indicates clearly the
tendency of the grain-size distribution to have a
coarse (negative) or a fine tail (positive).
Using phi units, a positive skewness
shows a mode (Mo) smaller than median (Md) and
mean (M). The relation is inverse if millimeters
units are used. In the distribution of curve A the
skewness is positive (fine tail more expressive). In
the curve B, when the relation is M>Md>Mo (in
millimeters values) or M<Md<Mo (in phi units)
the skewness is negative (coarse tail more
expressive).
In relation to kurtosis, the curves show
the flatness (platicurtic-curve C) or the peakness
(leptokurtic-curve D) of a grain-size distribution,
while the normal distribution is mesocurtic (curve
E).
Different from mean size and sorting
(standard deviation), represented in phi units,
skewness and kurtosis are indicated by a pure
number that involves a ratio spread and should not
be expressed with the phi symbol.
In the sedimentology point of view,
skewness is a measure extremely sensitive to the
type of transport and the energy conditions of the
transport/deposition agent. Kurtosis compares the
sorting grade of the curve central part with the two
tails. A normal curve is mesocurtic or the sorting
agent was uniform for the entire grain-size
distribution. Leptokurtic values have a central part
better sorted than the tails while a platicurtic value
indicate tails better sorted than the central portion.
These values are indicators of differences in the
sorting agent for the entire curve.
Using the grain-size parameters obtained
from the sediments of the five diagnostic areas, it
was possible to reach the following clues to
distinguish these areas from the other facies
occurring in the area.
1) The predominantly sandy sequences
showed a mean between 2-4, unimodal and
sometimes bimodal distributions, they had very
well (>0.35) to moderately sorted (<1.00), negative
skewed (more prominent coarse tail) and usually
leptokurtic (better sorted in the central part than the
tails of the curve). The bimodality and increase in
the sorting grade is given by the quantity of
bioclastic carbonate material occurring in a
predominantly quartzose population. This situation
reflects a high energy level of the deposition agent
(near shore) and can be compared with the
sediments of the modern beaches of the area.

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67

Figure 3. Graphical significance of the statistical measures (according to Martins, 1966).


2) The carbonate bioclastic components
showed a mean between -4 to 3, they had unimodal
or bimodal distributions, with a large range of
sorting values (from moderately to very poorly
sorted) a predominant negative indices for the
skewness and lepto (unimodal distributions) to
platicurtic (bimodal distribution).
Even the sediments are coarser than the
sandy facies, these sediments are also sensibilized
by the high energy present in a shallow marine area
(nearshore). A comparison with the modern
bioclastic sand beaches like Albardo (south
Brazil) confirms this assertion.
As much as the sandy sequences of outer
& inner continental shelf, the bioclastic sequence,
storm generated graded bedding were identified
produced mainly during the Wisconsin sea-level
confirming the presence of an high energy level
environment. In fact, graded sequences in
quartzose sand with bioclastic material and
bioclastic conglomeratic sand, both related to
storm layers, were identified along the inner and
outer Rio Grande do Sul continental shelf by
MARTINS et al. (1977, 1985, 1989) and
MARTINS & MARTINS (1985).

3) These petrographic attributes were


developed
through
ancient
shorelines
(Pleistocene/Holocene) like the 110-120 and 30-20
m. The so called relict sediments are representative
of shallow water energy parameters. The
reworking of these sediments through the
drowning of these environments did not change
these properties found in the palimpsest sediments.
On the other hand, the shallow modern
hydrodynamic usually reinforces the acquired
attributes, as it occurs with the Albardo shoal
sediments.
Outside the studied area, in the southern
Argentina continental shelf, URIEN et al. (1993)
identified relict glaciomarine sandy gravel linked
with glacial sediments (moraines) that reached the
old Pleistocene coastal plain. Prior to these
findings URIEN & OTTMANN (1971) described
the presence of relict sediments in the continental
shelf adjacent to Rio de la Plata, as MARTINS et
al. (1967) did in relation to Rio Grande do Sul
(Brazil).
4) These use of the grain-size statistical
parameters to identify and characterize coarse
(sand and gravel) marine sediments is a useful tool
to be applied to other similar sequences, provided

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Sand-Gravel Marine Deposits and Grain-Size Properties

they are based on a trustful data, as suggested by


MARTINS (1967), SYVISTKY et al. (1991) and
MARTINS et al. (1997 and 2003).
5) Answering the questions that arose
during the discussion proposed in the development
of this paper, we can summarize:
a) the grain-size smaller than 62 micron is
quite important when you have a predominant
coarse distribution and a fine tail reveals its
sensivity in relation with energy level of the
environment;
b) in the studied area, the old beaches
(Pleistocene) show usually similar properties to
those modern beaches (Holocene). Sometimes
beach and dune overlaps in old correspondents;
c) the published literature confirms
similarities of the obtained data of the present
study when compared with other careful studies on
grain-size analysis;
d) the drowning effect of the Holocene
transgression had little effect over the grain-size
properties, except for the stillstands stops that
reworked these deposits;
e) usually, the palimpsest sequences did
not erase the relict properties (negative skewness,
for instance) and sometimes the third statistical
moment was strengthened by removal of the fine
components of the distribution;
f) the results obtained with the
application of the statistical devices confirm that it
is a reliable technique, especially when used with
other grain attributes, and it has a wide distribution
when the field/laboratory procedures are well
conducted.

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BALSILLIE, J. H.; DONOGHUE, J. F.; BUTLER,
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