Isolating the role of shore-parallel sediment transport in continental shelf build-up

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While the role of shore-parallel transport is extensively documented, its contribution to source-to-sink and provenance studies is often overshadowed by tectonic variations, sediment influx, and sea-level change. To isolate the sedimentary contribution of shore-parallel transport, this study examines the central Levant continental margin (easternmost Mediterranean), where the other three factors are well constrained. New high-resolution multibeam and seismic reflection data collected in a dedicated cruise aboard the RV Bat Galim are used for analyzing current-indicating morphologies formed since the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM). Results show six different current indicators, which attest to the ongoing shore-parallel Levant Jet System (LJS) flow. Throughout the post-LGM transgression and coastal retreat, the LJS shifted landward to flow over the submerged shelf and upper slope. This shift, along with periodic/seasonal alterations in the flow intensity, regulated the sediment transport, distribution and erosion, along and across the margin, during the lowstand, transgression, and highstand conditions. This case study emphasizes the central role of shore-parallel currents in regulating the sedimentary budget. It provides a reference case for continental margins where the shore-parallel role is obscured by more dominant tectonic-eustatic-sedimentation factors.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104480
JournalContinental Shelf Research
StatePublished - 1 Aug 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Elsevier Ltd


  • Comet structures
  • Continental margin
  • Langmuir circulation
  • Mediterranean
  • Seafloor currents
  • Sediment waves
  • Sedimentation
  • Shore-parallel transport

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oceanography
  • Aquatic Science
  • Geology


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