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Stratigraphic features of sediment formation of the Clarion-Clipperton Province (the East Equatorial Pacific) (In Russian). Стратиграфические особенности осадочных образований провинции Кларион-Клиппертон (восточная Экваториальная Пацифика).



The area is characterized by regional stratigraphic hiatus from the Early Miocene up to the Quaternary. Numerous manganese nodules mostly of the Oligocene age are located on a bottom surface on Tertiary or Quaternary deposits. Detailed micropaleontological research of a block of ancient dense clay covered by the manganese crust is carried out. Radiolarian and diatom complexes have shown, that the crust was formed in the Quaternary on an eroded surface of the late Oligocene clay. Neogene sediments were eroded and washed away in the Quaternary by near-bottom currents. It is likely that the erosion started about 0.9-0.7 million years ago at the beginning of the “Glacial Pleistocene” when the ocean circulation became more active. The erosion of Tertiary deposits by near-bottom currents could be initiated by an effect of strong earthquakes in tectonically active zones of subduction. The seismic superficial waves of these earthquakes can propagate over thousands of kilometers and cause a seismic vibration effect on the surface sediment layer. They must disintegrate and stir up the sediments which are then carried away by the bottom current. Large-size components of the sediment including manganese nodules form residual deposits. The same vibration effect causes ancient nudules to float up onto the surface of the sediments. Thus, this hypothesis suggests one and the same reason and time interval for the peculiarities of the Clarion-Clipperton zone, that is, the regional stratigraphic hiatus, the formation of the residual nodule fields, and floating up of ancient nodules to the surface of the Quaternary deposits.
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