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Quaternary Loesses, Loess-like Sediments, Soils and Climate Change in Iran

Series: Relief, Boden, Paläoklima Volume: 24

By: Martin Kehl(Author)

210 pages, 48 b/w photos and b/w illustrations, 80 tables

Schweizerbart Science Publishers

Paperback | Jan 2010 | #206523 | ISBN-13: 9783443090241
Availability: Usually dispatched within 1-2 weeks Details
NHBS Price: £56.99 $73/€63 approx

About this book

Language: English

The author of Quaternary Loesses, Loess-like Sediments, Soils and Climate Change in Iran has studied sediment-soil sections in Iran in great detail in order to reconstruct and depict Middle to Upper Quaternary climate change and landscape evolution in this region.

Following a comprehensive review of loess occurrences in Iran and adjacent countries, in fact, Western Asia, the study concentrates in detail on the soil sedimentology and pedology of loess reference sections of the Caspian lowlands (Northern Iran) and on loess-like sediments of the Persepolis Basin (Southern Iran). Both sections are characterized by sub-humid to semi-arid climates and present ideal laboratories for studying past climate changes and their effects on sediment deposition and soil formation.

The sedimentological/paleopedological analyses presented here include detailed profile descriptions and copious micromorphological, geochemical and mineralogical data. Based on pedostratigraphic correlations and systematic luminescence- and radiocarbon dating, a new chronostratigrapic framework of sediment deposition and soil formation in Iran is described.

The framework developed in Quaternary Loesses, Loess-like Sediments, Soils and Climate Change in Iran is subsequently used to correlate the studied sections with sediment-soil sequences of West and Central Asia and Eastern Europe. The synthesis chapter describes how paleoclimatic conditions affect loess accumulation, soil formation and geomorphodynamics during the formation of sediment-soil sequences, considering the importance of human impact on the geomorphodynamic settings.

Quaternary Loesses, Loess-like Sediments, Soils and Climate Change in Iran is of interest to pedologists, paleopedologists all researchers interested in loess, soils, climatic controls of their formation in the Quaternary.


1 Introduction 4 

2 Research context 7 

2.1 Loesses and loess-like sediments - some definitions 7 
2.2 Loesses in Iran and adjacent countries 10 
2.2.1 Iran, Iraq and Afghanistan 10 
2.2.2 Central Asia 13 
2.2.3 Arabian Peninsula 16 
2.2.4 Israel/Palestine 17 
2.2.5 Syria and Turkey 18 
2.2.6 Conclusions 18 

3 Study areas 20 

3.1 The southern Caspian lowland and adjacent areas 20 
3.2 The Basin of Persepolis 24 

4 Methods 31 

4.1 Sedimentological and pedological analysis 31 
4.2 Luminescence and radiocarbon dating 33 

5 Mid to Late Quaternary loesses in Northern Iran 35 

5.1 Loess-soil sequences in the Sefid-Rud valley 35 
5.1.1 Section at Rustamabad 35 
5.1.2 Sections at Saravan and Barrage Tarik 39 
5.1.3 Modern soils 42 
5.1.4 Geochronological results 43 
5.2 Loess-soil sequences at Neka, Now Deh and Agh Band 44 
5.2.1 Section at Neka 44 
5.2.2 Section at Now Deh 51 
5.2.3 Section at Agh Band 60 
5.2.4 Mineralogy and geochemistry of loesses and soil horizons 67 
5.2.5 Modern soils 75 
5.2.6 Geochronological results 76 
5.3 Discussion 81 
5.3.1 Lithology and source areas of Northern Iranian loesses 81 
5.3.2 Geochronology of Northern Iranian loesses and correlation 
with eastern European and Central Asian loesses 85 
5.3.3 Paleoclimatic implications and conclusions for landscape evolution 91
5.4 Summary 97 

6 Late Quaternary loess and loess-like sediments in the Basin of Persepolis 99 

6.1 Late Quaternary sediments, paleosols and modern soils 99 
6.1.1 Upper Marvdasht and high valleys of Kamfiruz and Aspas 99 Sediment-soil sequences 99 Modern soils of the plains 113 Past and modern soils on limestone slopes and 
coarse-textured slope deposits 117 
6.1.2 Sivand river catchment 118 
6.1.3 Lower Marvdasht and Lake Neyriz 122 Sediment-soil sequences 123 Soils at the present land surface 128 Sand ramps and lake sediments 129 
6.1.4 Summary of geochemical and micromorphological characteristics 132 
6.1.5 Summary of luminescence and radiocarbon age estimates 134 
6.2 Discussion 136 
6.2.1 Eolian and fluvial basin-fill deposits 136 
6.2.2 Chronological framework of sediment deposition and soil 
formation in the Basin of Persepolis 138 
6.2.3 Paleoclimatic implications and correlation with phases of 
landscape evolution in Northern Iran and in the Middle East 141 
6.3 Summary 144 

7 Climate change, soil formation and geomorphogenesis 146 

8 Summary 153

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