Original paper

3D modelling of the Holocene succession in the southern Po Delta (Italy): from geology to applications

Calabrese, Lorenzo; Perini, Luisa; Lorito, Samantha; Luciani, Paolo; Martini, Alberto; Severi, Paolo; Correggiari, Annamaria; Remia, Alessandro


The paper presents the results of three-dimensional modelling of an area extending over approximately 800 square kilometres along the southern margin of the Po Delta. The geological model describes the Holocene sequence, here approximately 35–40 m thick. Developed on a framework of existing knowledge, it allows a more in-depth analysis of the subsurface stratigraphy of this sector of the Emilia-Romagna plain, identifying five units (including the Pleistocene substrate) that record the transgressive-regressive sedimentary cycle of the last 10 000 years. The geological model is used as base structure for developing 3D thematic mapping by processing cone penetration tests (CPT) data, their derived parameters and data related to the water quality of the coastal aquifer. Integration and correlation of the onshore geological data with marine geophysics and seabed core drillings has enabled the creation of a detailed model of recent deltaic and littoral morpho-depositional elements. This study shows that 3D modelling yields suitable tools for the insight and representation of the subsurface architecture and affords a better understanding of processes such as subsidence, saltwater intrusion into aquifers and the dynamics of coastal sands, processes, which are currently a matter of concern for the Emilia-Romagna regional government.


technical applicationscpt datacoastal model3d geological modelholocene successionsouthern po deltagroundwater data