Central Atlantic Paleo-Oceans and Climates (CAPOC) (part of the PAGEO research program)

CAPOC aims to develop the first integrated and high resolution biostratigraphic and isotopic proxy correlation for key intervals of the Jurassic/Cretaceous across the Central Atlantic conjugate margin. This project will evaluate changes in ocean circulation and climate in the central Atlantic and Tethys through the Middle Jurassic to Early Cretaceous interval during its syn-rift and early post-rift evolution, using two complimentary but independent methodologies: neodymium, carbon and oxygen isotopes proxies, and paleontological analysis integrated with sedimentology, organic geochemistry and regional plate models.

Recognition of changes in the pattern of ocean circulation will have a key impact on understanding source rock depositional settings both spatially and temporally. The knowledge gained from this collaborative research will also be especially relevant with respect to hydrocarbon exploration in the northwest Atlantic/Scotian margin, in terms of building and strengthening our understanding of basin configuration and ocean circulation with a direct impact on prediction of source rock development.


  1. Revised integrated chronology of isotope stratigraphic record and correlations for the Central Atlantic.
  2. Revised integrated biostratigraphy for key type sections and regional correlation charts for the Central Atlantic.
  3. Correlation of isotope data with organic carbon data, sequence stratigraphic and paleobiogeographic data (endemic vs. pandemic faunas, see below) from the Atlantic and West Mediterranean Tethyan(sub-)realms.
  4. Isotopically informed improved age constraint of the sequence-stratigraphic surfaces (unconformities and maximum flooding surfaces), presented as regional correlations and charts.
  5. An exemplar of temporal perturbations in global biogeochemical (Nd, C and O) cycling developed from the Moroccan conjugate margin.
  6. Improve timings of Tethys-Atlantic connections, the opening/closing of migration routes through the Viking and Hispanic corridors. Presented as series of middle Jurassic to early Cretaceous regional structure maps / palaeogeographic / plate reconstructions.
  7. Develop a series of middle Jurassic to early Cretaceous regional palaeogeographic maps, using latest plate reconstructions.
  8. Identify role of endemism vs. pendemism at the interface between the Atlantic, Tethyan and Pacific biogeographic domains.
  9. Implication for developed models for the petroleum system
    • Periods of source development
    • Source rock distribution
    • Comparison of the Nova Scotian and Morocco Conjugate Margin

Principal Investigators: Jonathan Redfern, Rhodri Jerrett, University of Manchester, UK; Gregory Price, University of Plymouth, UK; Luc Bulot, Université Aix-Marseille, France

December 2020 – December 2022