Larger benthic foraminifera are one of the important carbonate producers of the Cenozoic shallow-water subtropical and tropical marine regions. During the Eocene, a possible model period for various global warming scenarios, the most widespread LBF genus was the Nummulites. This very divers and rapidly evolving genus was the most important carbonate factory of the Eocene, and formed large carbonate accumulations, which are excellent hydrocarbon reservoirs in some regions. However, the origin and genesis of these accumulations is still not well understood, because they are not currently produced in modern environments and the fossil ones present a large variety of facies and architecture. In Romania most of the Eocene nummulitic accumulations are exposed in the Transylvanian Basin. Here these are either related to Nummulites perforatus (Bartonian), or to N. fabianii (Priabonian). Despite of the fact that both accumulations could be hypothetically related to two different Eocene global warming events e.g. the MECO, and a small short warming respectively, they are still poorly known in details e.g. species diversity, biofabrics, microfacies, architecture, and paleoenvironment Therefore, we propose multiproxy-method based on micropaleontology and microfacies studies to better constrain the characteristic sedimentary facies, architecture, and paleoenvironments of the nummulitic accumulations in the Transylvanian Basin, and to decipher its depositional environment and geologic evolution. Although these accumulations do not present economic interest in the Transylvanian Basin yet, but our working methods and models developed based on surface studies in this basin could be potentially applied to understand the significance of the subsurface reservoir and cap rock forming nummulitic formations from the West Black Sea.


  • O1. Determine the species diversity of the nummulitic accumulations (larger and smaller benthic foraminifera, and other microfossils
  • O2 Identification and description of sedimentary facies (biofabrics and microfacies)
  • O3. Paleoenvironmental interpretations (depositional model)

Estimated outcomes

The project will increase our understanding of the factors which controlled the formation of the nummulitic accumulations, giving rise to new scientific ideas and could open up new research directions. It would also help to strengthen the collaboration between the academic institute and industry. We intend to publish our results in high quality international journals (ISI and BDI) and presented on at least three scientific events. The project will also contribute considerably to the academic development, since it will make possible to create a Micropaleontology Workgroup at the Babeș-Bolyai University, the only formal one of its type in the country.