An influx of rapidly moving, sediment-laden water down a slope into a larger body of water; also called a density current because the suspended sediment results in the current having a higher density than the clearer water into which it flows. Such currents can occur in lakes and oceans, in some cases as by-products of earthquakes or mass movements such as slumps. The sedimentary deposits that form as the current loses energy are called turbidites and can be preserved as Bouma sequences. Turbidity currents are characteristic of trench slopes of convergent plate margins and continental slopes of passive margins.

Related Terms:

Bouma sequence
passive margin