Micromorphology and OSL dating of the basal part of the loess–paleosol sequence at La Mesada in Tucumán province, Northwest Argentina

Kemp, R.A. and Toms, P.S. and Sayago, J.M. and Derbyshire, E. and King, M. and Wagoner, L. (2003) Micromorphology and OSL dating of the basal part of the loess–paleosol sequence at La Mesada in Tucumán province, Northwest Argentina. Quaternary International, 106. pp. 111-117. ISSN 10406182

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Abstract

The basal part of the 42-m loess–paleosol sequence at La Mesada near Tucumán in NW Argentina reported by Zinck and Sayago (J. S. Am. Earth Sci. 12 (1999) 293; Quat. Int. 78 (2001) 11) is re-examined here using a combination of micromorphology and optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dating. Depth distributions of microstructure, clay coatings and secondary carbonate features enable the development of this part of the sequence to be reconstructed in terms of a series of pedosedimentary stages. Stage one involved accretionary pedogenesis with loess being modified by bioturbation (and possibly leaching) processes as it accumulated. Stage two was marked by a reduction in loess deposition and establishment of a relatively stable surface at which bioturbation, leaching and clay translocation processes were dominant. Stage three represented a return to accretionary pedogenesis followed by establishment of a new relatively stable surface and vertical leaching and clay translocation processes with some welding of secondary carbonate features on the underlying older soil. The three OSL dates, ranging from ca. 150 to Full-size image (<1 K) BP, suggest that the whole sequence is significantly older than indicated by the radiocarbon chronology (Full-size image (<1 K) BP) reported in the works of Zink and Sayago cited above. However, assuming that the pedosedimentary changes reflect alternating periods of dry-cool and moist-warm conditions as suggested in the works of Zink and Sayago cited above the succession still potentially provides the highest resolution proxy climatic record so far reported in Argentina.

Item Type: Article
Article Type: Article
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GB Physical geography
Divisions: Schools and Research Institutes > School of Natural & Social Sciences > Environmental Sciences
Research Priority Areas: Environmental Dynamics & Governance
Depositing User: Phillip Toms
Date Deposited: 13 Nov 2015 09:49
Last Modified: 13 Nov 2015 09:49
URI: http://eprints.glos.ac.uk/id/eprint/2818

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