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Spatial and glacial-interglacial variations in provenance of the Chinese Loess Plateau

Abstract : The Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP) covers an extensive area over 440,000 km2 and provides an unprecedented terrestrial record of Neogene climate. However, it is still unclear whether the provenance of these loess deposits is uniform or contains spatial and temporal differences. Here this is addressed by comparing detrital-zircon age spectra of typical loess and paleosol samples from three distant sites located at the western, middle, and southeastern parts of the CLP. Our results reveal that the zircon age spectra not only change between loess and paleosol layers but also vary from the western to the eastern CLP, at least during the last glacial cycle. The discrepancies of the zircon age spectra among different sites suggest that the loess provenance of CLP is heterogeneous and spatially variable, although it has been suggested that the mineralogical, elemental and isotopic compositions of loess deposits on CLP are highly homogenous spatially and in glacial-interglacial cycles.
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Guoqiao Xiao, Keqing Zong, Gaojun Li, Zhaochu Hu, Guillaume Dupont-Nivet, et al.. Spatial and glacial-interglacial variations in provenance of the Chinese Loess Plateau. Geophysical Research Letters, American Geophysical Union, 2012, 39, pp.B20715. ⟨10.1029/2012GL053304⟩. ⟨insu-00771314⟩



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