Institute of Geophysics of the CAS, v. v. i.


Sedimentary basins

Study of sedimentary basin fills

Sedimentary basins form where the Earth’s crust undergoes subsidence, and represent unique layered archives or information about the Earth’s evolution. Sedimentary rocks that fill basins record the interactions of lithospheric processes with the atmosphere and hydrosphere dynamics. Both ancient and present-day sedimentary basins contain most of the world’s hydrocarbons, as well as significant reserves of drinking water. The types of sedimentary successions in basins, their geometries and stratigraphic history provide clues to the tectonic and thermal regimes of the lithospheric plates in which they occur, as well as to the climatic conditions and their variations in time and space. The study of sedimentary basins necessarily requires a multi-disciplinary approach that involves collaboration of geologists with geophysicists, geochemists, palaeontologists, and, in industrial applications, with engineers. Our research is focused on the following main aspects of the basin studies: (i) evolution of depositional systems as clues to the tectono-sedimentary evolution of basins, studied by means of sequence stratigraphy and stratigraphic forward modelling; (ii) the history of past climatic, oceanographic, and sea-level changes based on their record in rocks, including modelling of the sedimentary record of orbitally driven sea-level changes.

The succession of Jurassic, Cretaceous, and Cenozoic strata, exposed in southern Utah, records important parts of tectonic history of North America as well as global oceanographic and climatic events. The Dakota Formation (Cretaceous) in the centre of the image has been a subject of study of our department members (Uličný 1999)

Current research topics:

Hydrodynamic conditions and relative sea-level changes in an epeiric seaway: the Bohemian Cretaceous Basin, Central Europe 
Depositional distortions of periodic climate signals: insights from numerical modelling
Tectonic processes and sea-level change during inception of an intracontinental basin: Cenomanian of the Bohemian Cretaceous Basin
Tectono-sedimentary history of the Eger Graben as part of the European Cenozoic Rift System
Research team: David Uličný
 Lenka Špičáková
 Jiří Laurin