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Environmental changes in southeastern Europe over the last 450 ka: Magnetic and pedologic study of a loess-paleosol profile from Kaolinovo (Bulgaria)

Abstract : Magnetic properties are sensitive paleoenvironmental proxies frequently used in studies of loess paleosol profiles. Understanding precisely the magnetic recording of soil responses to environmental and climatic changes needs combining pedologic data and geophysical proxies. Here we present a new high-resolution study of a 450 ka old loess-paleosol profile from low Danube loess area at Kaolinovo (NE Bulgaria). The profile consists of Holocene soil S0 on top, three paleosol units (S1, S2, S3-S4) and the intercalated loess horizons L1 to L4. Mineral magnetic and rock magnetic data together with pedological parameters (particle size distribution, total, crystalline and amorphous iron, soil organic carbon, total nitrogen, cation exchange capacity, carbonate content) show systematic variations in response to environmental changes. Principal component analyses carried out separately on magnetic mineralogy, rock magnetic and pedological variables reveal the complex response of loess - paleosol sediments to changes in source material and climate. The observed sharp shift in coercivity of mineral magnetic carriers at depth of the third loess L3 marks the change from low-coercivity mineral assemblages in older units to higher coercivity in the last three loess paleosol couplets (L1-S0, L2-S1, L3 - S2). This boundary is related to both dust source change and increased climate aridity. The observed spikes in concentration-dependent magnetic parameters in the lowermost part of the profile and particular magnetic and pedologic signature of the oldest deposits (S3-S4 pedocomplex) suggest that it may result from tephra additions in the studied loess-paleosol sequence, tentatively correlated to cryptotephra layers in other terrestrial archives in the region like Tenaghi Philippon and lake Ohrid sedimentary sequences. This work demonstrated that using PCA tool for studying the significance and objective inter-relationships of multiple mineralogical, mineral magnetic and pedological characteristics along depth of loess - paleosol profiles is an exemplary approach for revealing the underlying sedimentary and environmental processes.
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Submitted on : Friday, October 21, 2022 - 4:44:06 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, November 22, 2022 - 2:26:16 PM

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D. Jordanova, Q. Simon, S. Balescu, N. Jordanova, D. Ishlyamski, et al.. Environmental changes in southeastern Europe over the last 450 ka: Magnetic and pedologic study of a loess-paleosol profile from Kaolinovo (Bulgaria). Quaternary Science Reviews, 2022, 292, ⟨10.1016/j.quascirev.2022.107671⟩. ⟨insu-03824750⟩

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