Tsunami deposits in the Geological Record

Alastair George Dawson, Iain Stewart

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286 Citations (Scopus)


A review is presented here of tsunami deposits in the geological record. It begins with a discussion of the relationships between the processes of tsunami generation and propagation and the sedimentary responses. This is followed by a consideration of the sedimentary processes associated with the passage of tsunami waves across coastlines. Attention is also given to the sedimentary processes associated with tsunami-triggered gravity backwash flows and comparisons are made with turbidity current action. We observe that despite sedimentary evidence for recent tsunarmiites, geological research on ancient tsunamis has not identified stratigraphic units associated with onshore tsunami sedimentation. Equally, it is noted that nearly all published studies of sedimentary processes associated with modem tsunamis have not considered patterns of sediment transport and deposition in the offshore zone.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)166-183
Number of pages18
JournalSedimentary Geology
Issue number3-4
Early online date18 Jan 2007
Publication statusPublished - 15 Aug 2007


  • tsunami deposits
  • geology
  • offshore
  • sedimentation
  • run-up
  • cretaceous-tertiary boundary
  • aleutian fore-arc
  • 1 april 1946
  • gulf-of-Mexico
  • great tsunami
  • central Japan
  • deep-water
  • northeastern Mexico
  • generated tsunami
  • asteroid impact


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