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A major change in precipitation gradient on the Chinese Loess Plateau at the Pliocene-Quaternary boundary
Peng, Wenbin1; Nie, Junsheng1; Wang, Zhao1; Qiang, Xiaoke2; Garzanti, Eduardo3; Pfaff, Katharina4; Song, Yougui2; Stevens, Thomas5
AbstractSpatiotemporal variations in East Asian Monsoon (EAM) precipitation during the Quaternary have been intensively studied. However, spatial variations in pre-Quaternary EAM precipitation remain largely uninvestigated, preventing a clear understanding of monsoon dynamics during a warmer climatic period. Here we compare the spatial differences in heavy mineral assemblages between Quaternary loess and pre-Quaternary Red Clay on the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP) to analyze spatial patterns in weathering. Prior studies have revealed that unstable hornblende is the dominant (similar to 50%) heavy mineral in Chinese loess deposited over the past 500 ka, whereas hornblende content decreases to < 10% in strata older than similar to 1 Ma in the central CLP because of diagenesis. In the present study we found that hornblende is the dominant heavy mineral in 2-2.7 Ma loess on the northeastern CLP (at Jiaxian), which today receives little precipitation. Conversely, hornblende content in the upper Miocene-Pliocene Red Clay at Jiaxian is < 10%, as in the central CLP. The early Quaternary abundance of hornblende at Jiaxian indicates that the current northwestward-decreasing precipitation pattern and consequent dry climate at Jiaxian must have been initiated since 2.7 Ma, preventing hornblende dissolution to amounts < 10% as observed in the central CLP. By contrast, the 7 Ma and 3 Ma Jiaxian Red Clay hornblende content is significantly less than that of the Xifeng samples, despite the fact that today Xifeng receives more precipitation than Jiaxian, with expected enhanced hornblende weathering. This suggests that the northeastern CLP received more precipitation during the Late Miocene-Pliocene than at Xifeng, indicating that the precipitation gradient on the CLP was more east west during the Late Miocene-Pliocene rather than northwest southeast as it was in the Quaternary. A comparison of magnetic susceptibility records for these sections confirms this inference. We attribute this major change in climatic patterns at 2.7 Ma to decreased northward moisture transportation associated with Northern Hemisphere glaciation and cooling in the Quaternary. This study therefore demonstrates the potential usefulness of employing heavy mineral analysis in both paleoclimatic and paleooceanographic reconstructions.
KeywordHeavy Mineral Qemscan Loess Red Clay Precipitation Quaternary Pliocene Hornblende Weathering
WOS HeadingsScience & Technology ; Physical Sciences
Indexed BySCI
WOS Research AreaGeology
WOS SubjectGeosciences, Multidisciplinary
WOS IDWOS:000428006300011
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Cited Times:5[WOS]   [WOS Record]     [Related Records in WOS]
Document Type期刊论文
Affiliation1.Lanzhou Univ, Coll Earth & Environm Sci, Minist Educ, Key Lab Western Chinas Environm Syst, Lanzhou 730000, Gansu, Peoples R China
2.Chinese Acad Sci, Inst Earth Environm, SKLLQG, Xian 710075, Shaanxi, Peoples R China
3.Univ Milano Bicocca, Dept Earth & Environm Sci, Piazza Sci 4, I-20126 Milan, Italy
4.Colorado Sch Mines, Dept Geol & Geol Engn, 1516 Illinois St, Golden, CO 80401 USA
5.Uppsala Univ, Dept Earth Sci, Villavagan 16, S-75123 Uppsala, Sweden
Recommended Citation
GB/T 7714
Peng, Wenbin,Nie, Junsheng,Wang, Zhao,et al. A major change in precipitation gradient on the Chinese Loess Plateau at the Pliocene-Quaternary boundary[J]. JOURNAL OF ASIAN EARTH SCIENCES,2018,155(2018):134-138.
APA Peng, Wenbin.,Nie, Junsheng.,Wang, Zhao.,Qiang, Xiaoke.,Garzanti, Eduardo.,...&Stevens, Thomas.(2018).A major change in precipitation gradient on the Chinese Loess Plateau at the Pliocene-Quaternary boundary.JOURNAL OF ASIAN EARTH SCIENCES,155(2018),134-138.
MLA Peng, Wenbin,et al."A major change in precipitation gradient on the Chinese Loess Plateau at the Pliocene-Quaternary boundary".JOURNAL OF ASIAN EARTH SCIENCES 155.2018(2018):134-138.
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