Structural Control of the São Francisco River Delta from the Aeromagnetic Data, Brazil

Main Article Content

Alana Aderne dos Santos
Alanna Costa Dutra
José M. Landim Dominguez


The São Francisco River delta is a Quaternary sandy plain built on a structural low of the Sergipe-Alagoas Basin, known as the São Francisco Low. The inner limit of the São Francisco River delta is defined by rectilinear cliffs between the delta plain and the Barreiras Formation, which coincide with important faults delimiting the São Francisco Low. Moreover, on the continental shelf, the deltaic clinoform developed over a topographic low limited by rectilinear scarps that present compatible orientation with the Sergipe-Alagoas structural framework. Thus, based on a theoretical background that indicates the existence of structural control over the formation of delta systems in general, and previous knowledge of this area, it is possible that the Sergipe-Alagoas Basin structure has influenced the delta. This relationship can be inferred using adequate methodology. Magnetometric data was integrated in the present study with the geological information on the area. The main objective was to evaluate the existing structural controls over the formation of the São Francisco delta and neighboring areas. The first stage of the present study consisted of a thorough bibliographic review and the search for pre-existing geophysical data in the region.

Delta, San Francisco, aeromagnetic data, edge detection

Article Details

How to Cite
Santos, A. A., Dutra, A., & Dominguez, J. M. (2019). Structural Control of the São Francisco River Delta from the Aeromagnetic Data, Brazil. Journal of Geography, Environment and Earth Science International, 22(2), 1-12.
Short Research Article


Bittencourt ACSP, Dominguez JML, Fontes LCS, Sousa DL, Silva IR, Silva FR. Wave refraction, river damming, and episodes of severe shoreline erosion: The São Francisco river mouth, northeastern Brazil. Journal of Coastal Research. 2007; 23(4):930-938.

Bhattacharya JP, Giosan L. Wave-influenced deltas: Geomorphological implications for facies reconstruction. Sedimentology. 2003;50:187-210.

Guimarães JK. Evolução do delta do rio São Francisco – estratigrafia do Quaternário e relações morfodinâmicas. Tese (Doutorado em Geologia) - Universidade Federal da Bahia. Instituto de Geociências. Orientador: José Maria Landim Dominguez. 2010;127.

Souza-Lima W. Litoestratigrafia e evolução tectono-sedimentar da bacia de Sergipe-Alagoas, introdução. Fundação Paleonto-lógica Phoenix. Aracaju. Ano. 2006;8(89).

Bhattacharya JP, Walker RG. Deltas. In: Walker RG, James NP. (eds.): Facies Models - Response to sea level change. Toronto. Geological Association of Canada. 1992;157-178.

Dominguez JML. Delta dominados por ondas: Críticas às idéias atuais com referência particular ao modelo de Coleman & Wright. Revista Brasileira de Geociências. 1990;20(1-4):352-361.

Dominguez JML. The São Francisco strand plain: A paradigm for wave-dominated deltas. Geological Society Special Publication. 1996;117:217-231.

Dominguez JML, Bittencourt ACSP, Martin L. O papel da deriva litorânea de sedimentos arenosos na construção das planícies costeiras associadas às desembocaduras dos rios São Francisco (SE-AL), Jequitinhonha (BA), Doce (ES) e Paraíba do Sul (RJ). Revista Brasileira de Geociências. 1981;13(2):98-105.

Goodbred SL, Jr. Kuehl SA, Steckler MS, Sarker MH. Controls on facies distribution and stratigraphic preservation in the Ganges-Brahmaputra delta sequence: Sedimentary Geology. 2003;155:301–316.

Carminati E, Martinelli G, Severi P. Influence of glacial cycles and tectonics on natural subsidence in the Po Plain (Northern Italy): Insights from 14C ages: Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems. 2003;4:1082.

Armstrong C, Mohrig D, Hess T, George T, Straub KM. Influence of growth faults on coastal fluvial systems: Examples from the late Miocene to Recent Mississippi River Delta, Sedimentary Geology. 2014;301: 120–132.

Stanley DJ. Subsidence in the north-eastern Nile delta: Rapid rates, possible causes, and consequences: Science. 1988;240:497–500.

Lima CU, Bezerra HR, Nogueira CC, Rubson P, Souza OL. Quaternary fault control on the coastal sedimentation and morphology of the São Francisco coastal plain, Brazil. Tectonophysics. 2014;633: 98-114.

CPRM. Projeto aerogeofísico borda leste do planalto da borborema, CPRM (Programa Geologia do Brasil); 2008.

Hood PJ, Teskey DJ. Aeromagnetic gradiometer program of the Geological Survey of Canada. Geophysics. 1989; 54(8):1012–1022.

Ferreira FJF, de Souza J, de Barros A, Bongiolo S, de Castro LG, Romeiro MAT. Realce do gradiente horizontal total de anomalias magnéticas usando a inclinação do sinal analítico. parte i-aplicação a dados sintéticos, In:IV Simpósio Brasileiro de Geofísica; 2010.

Gunn PJ. Quantitative methods for inter-preting aeromagnetic data: A subjective review. Journal of Australian Geology & Geophysics. 1997;17(2):105-113.

Nabighian MN. The analytic signal of two-dimensional magnetic bodies with poly-gonal cross-section: Its properties and use for automated anomaly interpretation, Geophysics. 1972;37(1):507-517.

Thurston JB, Smith RS. Automatic conversion of magnetic data to depth, dip, and susceptibility contrast using the SPI (tm) method, Geophysics. 1997;62(3): 807.

Ponte FC. Estudo Morfo-Estrutural da Bacia Alagoas-Sergipe – Bol. Tec. Petrobras. 1969;12(4):439-474.