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A Compilation of Phanerozoic Sea-Level Change, Coastal Onlaps and Recommended Sequence Designations*

Compiled by John W. Snedden1 and Chengjie Liu2 Search and Discovery Article #40594 (2010)
Posted August 20, 2010 *Received August 12, 2010.
1 2

ExxonMobil Production Deutschland GmbH (john.w.snedden@exxonmobil.com) ExxonMobil Exploration (chengjie.liu@exxonmobil.com)

Introduction Following is a compilation of published information on Phanerozic sea-level change and coastal onlaps. Coastal onlap curves for the Paleozoic are derived from Haq and Schutter (2008) and that for the Mesozoic-Cenozoic are from Hardenbol et al. (1998), with minor revisions to accommodate absolute age revision and redefinition of stages. We also made age recalibrations for the Mesozoic-Cenozoic interval to the 2004/2008 timescale. The sea level trends are derived from Haq et al. (1987). The time scale used here is from 2008; it is the current consensus time scale, but we expect future revisions with improved age data. The magnitudes of sea-level change in this chart follow the estimation of Haq and Schutter (2008) and Hardenbol et al. (1998). However, there is little consensus on the range of sea-level changes, though most believe that the sea-level position during most of the Phanerozoic was within 100 meters of the present-day level. The sequence designations are derived from a combination of abbreviated stage names and a sequential numerical appendix similar to the sequence boundary names of Hardenbol et al. (1998)*. A sequence is designated by the sequence boundary name at its base. These are useful for chronostratigraphic designations of both depositional sequences and sequence stratigraphic surfaces. We thank Jim Ogg and Gabi Ogg at the Purdue University and the International Commission on Stratigraphy for their assistance in age recalibration of the Mesozoic-Cenozoic depositional sequences of Hardenbol et al. (1998) into the 2004/2008 time scale. * Sequence names for 19 Cambrian sequences are temporary because six stages containing these sequences have not yet been ratified by the International Commission on Stratigraphy.

References Haq, B.U. and S.R. Shutter, 2008, A chronology of Paleozoic sea-level changes: Science, v. 322, October 2008, p. 64-68. Haq, B.U. and A.M. Al-Qahtani, 2005, Phanerozoic cycles of sea-level change on the Arabian Platform: GeoArabia, v. 10/2, p. 127-160. Hardenbol, J., J. Thierry, M.B. Farley, T. Jacquin, P.C. de Graciansky, and P. Vail, 1998, Mesozoic and Cenozoic sequence chronostratigraphic framework of European basins, in P.C. Graciansky, et al. (eds) Mesozoic and Cenozoic Sequence Stratigraphy of European Basins: SEPM Special Publication 60, p. 3-13, charts 1-8.

MESOZOIC-CENOZOIC SEA-LEVEL CHANGE AND COASTAL ONLAPS


SYSTEMS SERIES STAGES
INTERNATIONAL STANDARD
IONIAN GELASIAN

PALEOZOIC SEA-LEVEL CHANGE AND COASTAL ONLAPS


SYSTEMS SERIES STAGES
INTERNATIONAL STANDARD COMMON USAGE
245.9 249.5 251.0 253.8

COASTAL ONLAPS*
Sequence Terminology1
Io1 0.78 Cala2 1.81 Cala1 Ge2 2.59 Pia2Ge1 Pia1 3.60 Za2 Za1 5.33 7.25 Tor2 Me2 Me1

SEA-LEVEL CHANGE*
(Meters above PD)
200
0.86 1.39 1.54 2.08 2.5 2.72 3.18 4.04 4.36 5.83 7.16 9.32

COASTAL ONLAPS*
Sequence Terminology1
1.0
In1 Chan3 Chan2 Chan1 Wu2
256

SEA-LEVEL CHANGE*
(Meters above PD)
200
249.85 251.5 252.5 253.8

COMMON USAGE
CALABRIAN PIACENZIAN

Landward Basin-ward
0.5 0.0

Landward Basin-ward
0.5 0.0

Pleist.

1.0

100

-100m

250

TRIASSIC
GUADALUPIAN LOPINGIAN

NEOGENE

MESSINIAN

Upper

Plioc.

ZANCLEAN

OLENEKIAN INDUAN CHANGHSINGIAN WUCHIAPINGIAN

100

-100m

Miocene

10

TORTONIAN
11.61

Tor1
11.79

Present Day Sea-Level

Present Day Sea-Level

Wu1 260.4
260.4

Middle

SERRAVALLIAN LANGHIAN BURDIGALIAN

13.82 15.97

Ser3 Ser2 Lan2/Ser1 Bur5/Lan1 Bur4 Bur3 Bur2 Bur1 Aq2 Aq1 Ch3

12.76 13.66 14.78 16.38 17.25 18.49 19.19 20.43

260

CAPITANIAN
265.8

Cap3 Cap2 Cap1

262 263

Long-term Trend

20

20.43

23.03

23.03 24.82

270

PERMIAN

AQUITANIAN

21.58

Long-term Trend

WORDIAN ROADIAN KUNGURIAN

Oligocene

Wor3 Wor2 Wor1 268.0 Roa2 Roa1 270.6 Kun4 Kun3 Kun2 Kun1 275.6 Art3

265.8 266.5 267 267.5 268.4 270.6 271.3 272 273.5 275.6

CHATTIAN
28.4

Ch2 Ch1 Ru3 Ru2


32.19 27.27 28.44 29.45

30

RUPELIAN
33.9

Short-term Trend

278

PALEOGENE

Lower

PRIABONIAN
37.2

Ru1 Pr3 Pr2 Pr1 Bart1 Lu4

CISURALIAN

280

ARTINSKIAN
284.4

Art2
281.5

Short-term Trend

33.90 34.77 35.99 37.20 38.56

Art1
284.4

Sak7
286.5

Eocene

40

BARTONIAN
40.4

Sak6

288 289.6 291 292 293.2 294.6 295.8 296.7 297.5 299 300.5 301.8 303.5 304.7 305.5 306.7 308.3 309 311.3 312.3 313.3 314.3 315.6 316 316.7 317.5 319.2 320.5 321.7 323 324 325 326.6 327.4 329.4 330.2 331.6 332.8

41.67

Lu3
42.93

290

SAKMARIAN
294.6

Sak5 Sak4 Sak3 Sak2 Sak1 As4 As3 As2 As1 Gzh3 Gzh2 Gzh1 303.4 Kas3 Kas2 Kas1 Mos3 Mos2 Mos1 311.7 Bas7 Bas6 Bas5 Bas4 Bas3 Bas2 Bas1 Srp8 Srp7 Srp6 Srp5 Srp4 Srp3 Srp2 Srp1 328.3 Vis8 Vis7 Vis6

LUTETIAN
48.6 Yp9

Lu2
45.35

Lu1
47.47

Yp10 Yp8 Yp7 Yp6 Yp5 Yp4 Yp3 Yp2 Yp1 Th6 Th5 Th3 Th4 Th2 Th1 Sel1 Da4 Da3 Da2 Da1 Ma5
51.06

50

49.75 50.12 51.73 52.45 53.55 54.49 54.09 54.89 55.44 56.09 56.52 57.24 57.58 58.23 59.32 61.1 62.15 63.41 64.54 65.12 67.7

ASSELIAN
299.0

Lower Mid. Upper

YPRESIAN
55.8

300

THANETIAN SELANDIAN DANIAN

Pennsylvanian

GZHELIAN KASIMOVIAN MOSCOVIAN BASHKIRIAN


318.1 307.2

Paleocene

58.7 61.1

60

310

65.5

MAASTRICHTIAN
70
70.6

Ma2

70.07

70.78 73.14

Upper Cretaceous

Cam8

Upper

Cam9

320

CARBONIFEROUS

Ma4 Ma3 Ma1

68.96 69.47

CAMPANIAN

Cam7 Cam6 Cam5 Cam4 Cam3 Cam2 Cam1 Sa3 Sa2 Sa1 Co1 Tu4
81.57

75.61 76.69 77.31 79.81 80.33 81.04 83.1 83.99 84.62 85.55 86.96

SERPUKHOVIAN

80

330

83.5

85.8 88.6

Mississippian

Middle

SANTONIAN CONIACIAN TURONIAN

Vis5 Vis4

90

89.54

VISEAN
Vis3 Vis2

336

Tu3 Tu2 Tu1 93.6 Ce5 Ce4 Ce3 Ce2 Ce1 Al11 Al10 Al9 Al8

90.89

91.21 92.6 94.7 95.37 96.28 97.96 98.24 99.69

339.2

340

CRETACEOUS

343

CENOMANIAN
99.6

Vis1 345.3
344.5

Tou5
345.7

100

Tou4
348.5

100.94

Lower

102.31

350

Tou3
351

105.05

TOURNAISIAN

Tou2
353.3

ALBIAN

Al7 Al6 Al5 Al4 Al3


108.18

106.42 107.94 109.21

Tou1

Cretaceous

110

Al2 112.0 Ap6

Al1

110.97

110.48 111.36 112.4

359.2

359.2

360

Fam8 Fam7

361

Ap5
117.85

363.4

Fam6

Upper

120

APTIAN

Ap4
121

FAMENNIAN

Fam5 Fam4 Fam3

365.7 366.4 367.5

Ap3

370
123.97 124.58 125 126.2 127.75 128.35 128.63 129.12 129.64 130.07 130.27 130.4 131.61 132.47 133.13 133.64 134.17 134.75 135.23 135.89 136.43 138.23 140.18 140.95 141.33 141.55 141.93 142.96 143.48 144.44 145.46 146.04 146.96 147.66 148.61 150.37 151.07 152.49 153.16 154.2 155.35 156.09 157.04 158.06 159.28 160.77 162.01 163.2 163.71 164.23 164.93 164.74 165.52 166.21 166.7 167.09 167.97 169.05 169.84 170.62 171.6 173.38 160.06 161.21 162.69 158.53 153.77

370

Fam2
372

Lower

125.0

Ap2 Ap1 Barr6

Fam1 374.5 Fra8 Fra7 Fra6 Fra5


374.5 375.2 376 377.6 379 380.8 382 384 385.9 385.5 386.2 387.5 388.4 390 391.6 392.8 391 392.3 393.3 395 395.4 397.5

BARREMIAN HAUTERIVIAN VALANGINIAN

130

DEVONIAN

Barr5 Barr4 Barr2 Barr3 Barr1 130.0 Ha6 Ha7 Ha5 Ha4 Ha3 Ha2 Ha1 133.9 Va7 Va6 Va5 Va4 Va3 Va2 Va1 140.2 Be8 Be7Be6 Be5 Be4 Be3 Be2 Be1 145.5 Ti5 Ti4 Ti3 Ti2 150.8 Ti1 Kim5 Kim4 Kim3 Kim2 Kim1 Kim0 Ox7 Ox6 Ox5 Ox4 Ox3 Ox2 Ox1 Ox0

380

FRASNIAN
385.3

Fra4 Fra3 Fra2 Fra1 Giv7 Giv6 Giv5 Giv4 Giv3 Giv2 Giv1 Eif6 Eif5 Eif4 Eif3 Eif2 Eif1 397.5 Ems5

Middle

140

BERRIASIAN

390

GIVETIAN
391.8

Mid. Jurassic Upper Jurassic

EIFELIAN

TITHONIAN KIMMERIDGIAN

150

400

399.5

Ems4

401.2

155.6

Lower

EMSIAN
407.0

Ems3
404

Ems2 Ems1 Prg1


410 406 407

OXFORDIAN
161.2

160

JURASSIC

CALLOVIAN BATHONIAN BAJOCIAN AALENIAN

Mid. Upper

170

Call5 Call4 Call2 Call3 Call1 164.7 Call0 Bat5 Bat4 Bat3 Bat2 Bj5 Bat1 167.7 Bj4 Bj3 Bj2 Bj1 171.6 Aa2 Aa1 175.6 Toa7 Toa6

410

PRAGIAN
411.2

Loc4 Loc3

411.5 413.5 414.5 415.5 417.5

LOCHKOVIAN
416.0

Loc2 Loc1 Pri1 Lud3 Lud2 Lud1 Gor1 Hom2 Hom1 Sh1 Tely4 Tely3

PRIDOLIAN
LUDLOW WENLOCK

418.7

419 420.5 421 423 425 426 427.5 429 430.5

420

174.93 176.09 178.3

180

TOARCIAN

Toa5 Toa4 Toa3 Toa2 183.0 Toa1 Pl8 Pl7 Pl6 Pl5 Pl2 Pl1 Si5 Si4 Si3 Si2 Si1 He3 He2 199.6 He1 Rh2 Rh1 No2 Pl3
180.95 182.85

179.62 181.13 182.3 183.1

SILURIAN

Jurassic

LUDFORDIAN 421.3 GORSTIAN 422.9 HOMERIAN 426.2 SHEINWOODIAN 428.2

430

LLANDOVERY

184.81 186.03 186.85 187.08 187.43 188.41 189.2 190.01 191.63

Lower

TELYCHIAN
436.0

Tely2 Tely1

432

PLIENSBACHIAN
189.6

Pl4

435

Aer2
436.8

190

Lower

AERONIAN RHUDDANIAN

Aer1 439.0 Rhu1 443.7


443.7 439

SINEMURIAN
196.5

193.35 194.47 195.49 196.85 198.25 199.3 200.65 201.77

440

HETTANGIAN
200

HIRNANTIAN
450

445.6

ASHGILL

Upper

RHAETIAN
203.6

Hir1 Kat7 Kat6 Kat5 Kat4 Kat3 Kat2

445.7 446.3 447.3 448 449 450 452

KATIAN
455.8

Triassic

205.56

Kat1

ORDOVICIAN

No1

CARADOC

San3 San2

455.5 456.2 458.2

210

NORIAN
211.48

SANDBIAN
460.9

460

San1 Dar4 Dar3 Dar2 Dar1


467 460.9 461.8 462.8 464

Middle

Car4

Upper

TRIASSIC

216.5
218.13

DARRIWILIAN
468.1

LLANVIRN

220

Car3

CARNIAN

221.39

Car2
224.13

470

DAPINGIAN
471.8

Dap2

ARENIG

Dap1 Flo4 Flo3

471 471.8 473 475 476 477

Car1 228.7
227.96 229.64

FLOIAN

Lopingian Low. Middle Triassic

230

Lower

Lad3 Lad2

Flo2 Flo1 478.6 Tre4

LADINIAN
237.0

232.51

480

Lad1
234.25

481

An4
238.75

TREMADOCIAN
488.3

Tre3
483.8

Tre2
486.8

ANISIAN
An2 An1 245.9

241.56 243.94 245.05 246.64 247.64

Series 3 Furongian

240

An3

WERENDIAN
DATSONIAN

490

STAGE 10
492.0

PAYNTONIAN IVERIAN

Tre1 10Cam4 10Cam3 10Cam2 10Cam1 9Cam1

488.3 489 489.8 491.2 492

250

OLENEKIAN INDUAN
CHANGHSINGIAN WUCHIAPINGIAN

Ol4 Ol3

STAGE 9
496.0

Ol2

495

247.9 249.3 249.85 251.5 252.5 253.8 256

249.5 251.0 253.8

Upper PERMIAN

Ol1 In1 Chan3 Chan2 Chan1 Wu2 Wu1

PAIBIAN

499.0

IDAMEAN

Pai1
499

500

GUZHANGIAN MINDYALLAN
503.0

Guz2 Guz1 Dru2


504 501 502

DRUMIAN
506.5

MAYAN AMAGAN TOYONIAN BOTOMIAN ATDABANIAN


521.0

Dru1 5Cam3 5Cam2 5Cam1 4Cam2


511.5 506 507 507.5 509

CAMBRIAN

260
1

260.4

260.4

200

100

-100m

STAGE 5
510.0

Series 2

Sequence terminology is derived from combination of abbreviated stage names and a sequential numerical appendix similar to the sequence boundary names of Hadenbol et al. (1998). Coastal onlap curves of Paleozoic are from Haq and Shutter (2008) and that for the Mesozoic-Cenozoic are from Hardenbol et al. (1998) with minor revision. Major relative sea-level change* (>75 m) Medium relative sea-level change (25-75 m) Minor relative sea-level change (<25 m) * The magnitudes of sea-level change in this chart follow the estimation of Haq and Shutter (2008), and Hardenbol and others (1998). However, there is little consensus on the range of sea-level changes though it is a general belief that the sea-level during most of the Phanerozoic has been less than 100 meters of the present day level.

510

STAGE 4
515.0

4Cam1
514

3Cam5
515.5

STAGE 3

3Cam4 3Cam3 3Cam2 3Cam1

517 517.8 518.8 521

520

TOMMOTIAN

2Cam2
524

Terreneuvian

STAGE 2
528.0

2Cam1
528

REFERENCES
Haq, B. U. and Shutter, S. R., 2008. A chronology of Paleozoic sea-level changes. Science, Vol. 322, October 2008, p. 64-68. Haq, B. U. and Al-Qahtani, A. M., 2005. Phanerozoic cycles of sea-level change on the Arabian Platform. GeoArabia, Vol. 10 (2), p. 127-160. Hardenbol, J., Thierry, J., Farley, M. B., Jacquin, T., de Graciansky, P. C., and Vail, P., 1998. Mesozoic and Cenozoic sequence chronostratigraphic framework of European basins, in Graciansky, P. C. et al. (eds.), Mesozoic and Cenozoic Sequence Stratigraphy of European Basins, SEPM Special Pub. #60, p. 3-13, charts 1-8.

530

For6

FORTUNIAN

NEMAKITDALDYNIAN

533

For5 For4 For3


538 535 536

For2

540
542.0

540

For1
542

Contact information for this file: John W. Snedden, Ph.D. ExxonMobil Production Deutschland GmbH (john.w.snedden@exxonmobil.com Chengjie Liu, Ph.D., ExxonMobil Exploration (chengjie.liu@exxonmobil.com)
550

Ven4
544

Ven3

EDIACARAN

545.5

Ven2 Ven1
548 549

200

100

-100m