F. Javier Hernández-Molina

F. Javier Hernández-Molina
Royal Holloway, University of London | RHUL · Department of Earth Sciences

Professor

About

638
Publications
110,172
Reads
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10,195
Citations
Citations since 2016
133 Research Items
6140 Citations
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Introduction
Dr. Hernández-Molina is currently Professor by the University of London ascribed to the Department of Earth Sciences at Royal Holloway Univ. London (RHUL). He is a specialist in seismic stratigraphy, sedimentary processes and basin analysis, and is experienced in general core description and sediment structures identification. His research focuses on the influence of bottom-current circulation along continental margins as well as the study of Contourite Depositional Systems (CDSs).

Publications

Publications (638)
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Oceanic gateways have influenced the global oceanic circulation and climate since ancient times. During the Mesozoic, the breakup of Pangea, and most importantly of Laurasia (which began with the separation of North America from Eurasia at ~215-175 Ma in the Late Triassic to Early Jurassic and which lasted until ~56 Ma in the Paleocene) and Gondwan...
Article
Full-text available
Numerous bottom current-controlled depositional and erosional features, which together form Contourite Depositional Systems (CDS), have been recognized in deep-water settings over the past decade. Most of these systems are described based on two-dimensional (2D) seismic data, whereas only a few CDS have been characterised from high-resolution 3D da...
Article
Bottom current deposits (contourites) form in association with modern-day or ancient oceanic gateways. A paucity of examples in the ancient record and the lack of consensus on diagnostic criteria for differentiating them from other deepwater deposits limit our understanding of how they may record past global oceanic circulation, tectonic events and...
Article
The Bransfield Strait (Antarctica) is an important region for evaluating changes in Weddell Sea shelf waters on geological time scales because of its restricted connections to the surrounding ocean. However, the detailed oceanographic consequences of the opening of the strait remain unclear. We present bottom-current-related sedimentary features in...
Article
Full-text available
Despite the rise in published evidence of deep‐marine bottom current processes and associated deposits there are still very few documented outcrop examples. Herein are reported results of a contourite channel system related to the late Miocene palaeo‐Mediterranean Outflow Water in the Rifian Corridor, Morocco. This work aims to unravel the sediment...
Chapter
Deepwater environments tend to collect sedimentary deposits in discrete events in a bed-by-bed fashion, which is markedly different from terrestrial and shallow marine settings that are more commonly affected by persistent reworking of the bed. Deepwater sedimentation units, or beds, contain myriad sedimentary structures and bed fabrics that reflec...
Chapter
Along-slope bottom currents and a series of secondary oceanographic processes interact at different scales to form sedimentary deposits referred to as contourite and mixed (turbidite-contourite) depositional systems. The recent proliferation of both academic and industry research on deep-marine sedimentation documents significant advances in the un...
Chapter
While most of the current human activity offshore is military, shipping, leisure and oil and gas, many other industries are looking to the deepwater for potential development. Renewables are moving forward in shallow water, offshore carbon dioxide storage projects are underway and there are a number of potential future opportunities for the deepwat...
Chapter
Deepwater sedimentary processes are highly variable and range from very high-energy events to passive background sedimentation. Coarse sediment, including sand and gravel, is primarily transported to deepwater via fall, slide, slump and flow, in which gravity acts on the grains to pull a mixture of sediment and water downslope. Finer sediment, incl...
Book
Deepwater Sedimentary Systems: Science, Discovery and Applications helps readers identify, understand and interpret deepwater sedimentary systems at various scales – both onshore and offshore. This book describes the best practices in the integration of geology, geophysics, engineering, technology and economics used to inform smart business decisio...
Article
Full-text available
We appreciate the comments by G. Shanmugam on the paper “A new classification system for mixed (turbidite-contourite) depositional systems: Examples, conceptual models and diagnostic criteria for modern and ancient records” by S. Rodrigues, F.J. Hernández-Molina, M. Fonnesu, E. Miramontes, M. Rebesco, D. C. Campbell [Earth-Science Reviews (2022), 1...
Article
The thick sequence of mid‐late Cenozoic sediments preserved within the Enderby Basin of the East Antarctica margin contains key information regarding glacial history and palaeo‐oceanographic conditions during the last 34 My. The interplay between glacial processes and ocean circulation can be reconstructed from seismic stratigraphic studies. Here,...
Conference Paper
The southwestern margin of Iberian (SWIM) underwent a complex tectonic evolution, related to its proximity to the plate boundary between Africa and Europe, and the Betic-Rif Orogeny. The Algarve, Doñana, Sanlucar and Cadiz Basins developed on the Betics' foreland since the late Miocene, and their sedimentary infill is composed of deep-water turbidi...
Article
Full-text available
Mixed turbidite–contourite depositional systems are commonly found on continental margins, but their bedforms and associated sedimentary processes have not been studied in depth. In this work, we used multibeam echo-sounder, sub-bottom profiling, and multichannel seismic data from the continental rise of the Cosmonaut Sea, East Antarctica, to (1) i...
Article
The Gulf of Cadiz Contourite Depositional System (GCCS) developed due to the interaction of the Mediterranean Outflow Water (MOW) with the middle continental slope of the SW Iberian continental margin. The GCCS evolved in a complex tectonic setting within the foreland of the Betic Orogeny and near the Nubia-Eurasia plate boundary. This study used t...
Article
Full-text available
Foreland basins are normally dominated by turbidite deposits in the early stages of their evolution. In this work, we show evidences of bottom current influence in the Algarve basin, which evolved as a foredeep basin of the Betic-Rif orogeny, during which the paleo-Mediterranean Outflow Water (MOW) was active through the Betic and Rifian corridors....
Article
Full-text available
Interactions between along-slope bottom currents and down-slope turbidity flows can create a myriad of features and deposits. Despite numerous efforts to differentiate contourites from turbidites and mixed features, reliable diagnostic criteria are still lacking from the stratigraphic and sedimentological viewpoints. The main aim of this study is t...
Article
Full-text available
Clinoforms and clinothems are ubiquitous in shallow marine and shelf margin environments, where they show remarkable seaward progradation trends. Consensus holds that these features do not form in deepwater settings. This study describes an example of a large, asymmetric mounded deposit formed in Upper Jurassic to Lower Cretaceous sediments along t...
Article
Full-text available
The identification of several Cretaceous to Paleogene mixed turbidite-contourite systems along the upper to middle continental slope of Nova Scotia provides a unique opportunity to investigate the spatial and temporal variability of their morphological elements. The mixed systems were studied using 3D seismic reflection data and well-established ch...
Article
Full-text available
Interplay of deep‐water sedimentary processes is responsible for building a myriad of features and deposits across mixed turbidite–contourite systems, from <5 cm beds to >200 km long sedimentary drifts. Investigations of the spatial and temporal variability of their sedimentary facies and facies associations is crucial to reveal the dynamics betwee...
Article
Full-text available
Mixed (turbidite-contourite) depositional systems are formed by a complex interplay of deep-water processes. An evaluation of their morphological elements and their lateral and spatial distribution is crucial to better understand the interplay of transport and depositional processes, involving along-slope bottom currents and down-slope turbidity cu...
Chapter
The past three decades have seen a sustained and coordinated effort to refine the seismic stratigraphic framework of the Antarctic margin that has underpinned the development of numerous geological drilling expeditions from the continental shelf and beyond. Integration of these offshore drilling datasets covering the Cenozoic era with Antarctic inl...
Article
Full-text available
Palaeoceanographic studies of abyssal bottom currents are often complicated by low current speeds and sedimentation rates, resulting in sediment condensation or erosion. However, increased rates of erosion and deposition may occur where bottom current velocities change as they pass through deep marine gaps and gateways. Despite this, the deposition...
Article
Full-text available
Contourite features are increasingly identified in seismic data, but the mechanisms controlling their evolution remain poorly understood. Using 2D multichannel reflection seismic and well data, this study describes large Oligocene- to middle Miocene-aged sedimentary bodies that show prominent lateral migration along the base of the Argentine slope....
Article
The deep-water sedimentary processes and morphological features offshore Madeira Island, located in the Central-NE Atlantic have been scantly studied. The analysis of new multibeam bathymetry, echo-sounder profiles and few multichannel seismic reflection profiles allowed us to identify the main geomorphologies, geomorphic processes and their interp...
Article
Full-text available
A Correction to this paper has been published: https://doi.org/10.1007/s00367-021–00,703-w
Article
Full-text available
Late Miocene contourite deposits related to the paleo-Mediterranean Outflow Water (MOW) were identified in the Betic and Rifian corridors prior to the restriction of the Mediterranean-Atlantic gateway during the latest Miocene. In this study, we identified for the first time their downstream continuation in the Gulf of Cádiz through seismic stratig...
Article
Multibeam bathymetric imagery and acoustic sub-bottom profiles are used to reveal distribution patterns of sub-surface sedimentation in Dove Basin (Scotia Sea). The goals of the study are to determine the imprint of the inflow of deep Antarctic water masses from the Weddell Sea into the Scotia Sea, to establish the factors driving the styles of con...
Article
Full-text available
Plastered drifts are a complex type of contouritic drift, very common along continental slopes, although their precise sedimentary stacking pattern and long-term evolution are not well understood. In this work we used 3D and 2D multichannel reflection seismic and well datasets to characterize a Paleogene plastered drift along the Uruguayan continen...
Article
Full-text available
The Mediterranean-Atlantic water-mass exchange provides the ideal setting for deciphering the role of gateway evolution in ocean circulation. However, the dynamics of Mediterranean Outflow Water (MOW) during closure of the Late Miocene Mediterranean-Atlantic gateways are poorly understood. Here, we define the sedimentary evolution of Neogene basins...
Article
Full-text available
Sediment deposits formed mainly under the influence of bottom currents (contourites) are widely used as high-resolution archives for reconstructing past ocean conditions. However, the driving processes of Contourite Depositional Systems (CDS) are not entirely understood. The aim of this study is to establish a clearer link between contourite featur...
Preprint
Plastic pollution is widespread throughout the marine environments representing a risk for ecosystems and human health when plastic enters the food chain. Understanding factors and processes controlling plastic distribution and accumulation is crucial to identify plastic hotspots. Gateways and straits can play an important role on transferring plas...
Article
Full-text available
The Antarctic Peninsula’s Pacific margin is one of the best studied sectors of the Antarctic continental margin. Since the 1990s, several research cruises have targeted the continental rise with geophysical surveys, conventional coring and deep-sea drilling. The previous studies highlighted the potential of large sediment drifts on the rise as high...
Article
Full-text available
Idealized facies of bottom current deposits (contourites) have been established for fine‐grained contourite drifts in modern deep‐marine sedimentary environments. Their equivalent facies in the ancient record however are only scarcely recognized due to the weathered nature of most fine‐grained deposits in outcrop. Facies related to the erosional el...
Article
The purpose of this study is to differentiate and characterise contouritic sands in two different locations with variable sediment compositions (siliciclastic and bioclastic) based on a multiproxy approach that includes the analysis of sedimentary texture, semi-quantitative geochemistry, microfacies and ichnological information, as well as a Princi...
Article
Plastic pollution is widespread throughout the marine environment representing a risk for ecosystems and human health when plastic enters the food chain. Understanding factors and processes controlling plastic distribution and accumulation is crucial to identify plastic hotspots. Gateways and straits can play an important role on transferring plast...
Article
Full-text available
The North Pacific subtropical gyre (NPSG) plays a major role in present global ocean circulation. At times, the gyre has coursed through the South China Sea, but its role in the evolutionary development of that Sea remains uncertain. This work systematically describes a major shift in NPSG paleo-circulation evident from sedimentary features observe...
Article
Over the past decades, contourite drifts have been widely identified in the deep ocean with their classification constantly being improved. Some contourite drift types, however, are not yet well constrained. The present study investigates contourite drifts in the southern South China Sea for the first time based on high-resolution reflection seismi...
Article
Overflows through oceanic gateways govern the exchange of water masses in the world's ocean basins. These exchanges also involve energy, salinity, nutrients, and carbon. As such, the physical features that control overflow can exert a strong influence on regional and global climate. Here, we present the first description of sedimentary processes ge...
Article
The Sines Contourite Depositional System, located in the Southwest Portuguese Margin, is a central segment of the Iberian Contourite Depositional Complex, built under the influence of the Mediterranean Outflow Water (MOW). This work presents the onset and evolution of this system using multibeam bathymetry, multichannel seismic reflection lines, se...
Article
Full-text available
The Late Cretaceous record offshore Argentina comprises an extensive hybrid/mixed (turbidite-contourite) depositional system over 280,000 km2. This offers a key site to investigate complex assemblages of morphosedimentary features and their depositional processes during one of the major tectonic events in the southern hemisphere: the breakup of Gon...
Article
Full-text available
Despite numerous efforts to properly differentiate between contourites and other deep-water deposits in cores and outcrops, reliable diagnostic criteria are still lacking. The co-occurrence of downslope and along-slope sedimen-tary processes makes it particularly difficult to differentiate these relatively homogeneous deposits. The main aim of this...
Article
Full-text available
To investigate past changes in the Mediterranean Overflow Water (MOW) to the Atlantic, we analyzed the strength of the MOW and benthic δ13C along the last 250 kyr at Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP) Site U1389 in the Gulf of Cadiz, near the Strait of Gibraltar. Both the strength of the MOW and the benthic δ13C were mainly driven by precessi...
Article
Interbedded contourites, turbidites and pelagites are commonplace in many deep‐water slope environments. However, the distinction between these different facies remains a source of controversy. This detailed study of calcareous contourites and associated deep‐marine facies from an Eocene–Miocene sedimentary succession on Cyprus clearly documents th...
Article
Full-text available
Paleoceanographic information from submarine overflows in the vicinity of oceanic gate- ways is of major importance for resolving the role of ocean circulation in modulating Earth’s climate. Earth system models are currently the favored way to study the impact of gateways on global-scale processes, but studies on overflow-related deposits are more...
Article
A morphological and seismic-stratigraphic analysis of the Gulf of Cadiz area near the Strait of Gibraltar is presented in this work, focused on the sedimentary evolution of the upper and proximal middle-continental slope since the Mid-Pleistocene. Based on the analysis of seismic reflection profiles and swath bathymetry data, this work analyses the...
Article
Full-text available
The differentiation of pure turbidites and contourites from mixed deposits —as the bottom current reworked sands (BCRS) — in sedimentary cores and outcrops from the modern or ancient records is still challenging. An accurate evaluation of facies associations calls for detailed understanding of processes controlling these deep-water systems and how...
Article
The evolution of the Le Danois contourite depositional systems (CDS) during the Pliocene and Quaternary was investigated based on high-resolution seismic reflection data. From old to young, six seismic units (U1–U6) bounded by major discontinuities (H1–H6) were identified. Regarding variations of the bottom-current circulation, four evolution stage...
Article
Full-text available
The hydrocarbon exploration of oceanic depositional systems demands a better understanding of the role of bottom currents and their implications for petroleum systems such as reservoir and sealing rocks. Deep-marine bottom-current reworked sands (sandy contourites) have been recognized in hydrocarbon-bearing sands of the Kwanza Basin. Such understa...