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Seismic atlas of the "Messinian Salinity Crisis" markers in the Mediterranean and Black seas – Volume 2

Johanna Lofi

The Messinian Salinity Crisis (MSC) is a huge outstanding succession of events that deeply modified the Mediterranean area within a short time span at the geological scale. In 2011, a seismic atlas of the Messinian markers in the Mediterranean and Black seas has been published (Lofi et al., 2011, Volume 1) (see Editors’ websites: & This collective work summarizes, in one publication with a common format, the most relevant seismic features related to this exceptional event in the offshore domain. It also proposes a new global and consistent terminology for the MSC markers in the entire offshore Mediterranean area in order to avoid nomenclatural problems. Throughout 13 study areas, the seismic facies, geometry and extend of the Messinian markers (bounding surfaces and depositional units) are described. The Atlas however does not provide a complete description of all what is known about the MSC and about the geology of each study area. Accordingly, illustrations in the Atlas should be used for a global description of the offshore imprints of the MSC at a broad scale, or for local information or site-specific general interpretations. Interpreted seismic data were carefully selected according to their quality, position and significance. Raw and interpreted seismic profiles are available on CD-Rom.

Volume 2 is currently being prepared with the objectives : (1) to image MSC seismic markers from margins and basins that have not been illustrated in the first volume and (2) to complete the extension map of the MSC markers in the offshore and onshore domains at the Mediterranean scale. As the first volume, Volume 2 also aims to share the geological interpretation of seismic reflection data imaging MSC markers, to make this information accessible to the non geophysician community and to be a reference work that can be used by teachers and future researchers working on the Messinian event.

This publication project is open to anybody from industry and academia willing to contribute. At the present time, 9 new sites have been selected and several others are under consideration. Publication of the Seismic atlas of the "Messinian Salinity Crisis" markers in the Mediterranean and Black seas – Volume 2 is planned for Fall 2014. For more details, contact Dr Johanna Lofi (atlas coordinator). This contribution has been funded by the Actions Marges French research program.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90161©2013 AAPG European Regional Conference, Barcelona, Spain, 8-10 April 2013