Archive for the ‘Physical geography’ category

Homo erectus skull dating with cosmogenic nuclides in Denizli

January 21, 2014

Newly  obtained cosmogenic ages challenge our current knowledge of the Anatolian Homo erectus dispersal. A new discovery within a travertine quarry from Denizli was made by Cihat Alçiçek from Pamukkale University and his colloquies, Lebatard et al. (published in EPSL vol. 390). The burial ages determined on pebbles from conglomeratic levels framing travertine unit that bears the fossil. “The actual age of the fossils is likely to be in the 1.1–1.3 Ma range”, they report. This date is in close agreement with the paleoanthropological conclusions based on morphometric comparisons. The Turkish Homo erectus belongs to the Chinese and African fossil groups, and is different from Middle and Upper Pleistocene specimens. It attests to the antiquity of human occupation of the Anatolian Peninsula. please refer to http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.epsl.2013.12.031 for more information.

Screen shot 2014-01-21 at 11.55.58skull

Late autumn–winter precipitation in northeast Turkey

January 27, 2012

Jex et al. published a short paper in Quaternary Research about speleothem-derived reconstruction of late autumn–winter precipitation in Gümüşhane, northeast Turkey. The observation goes back to ~ AD 1500 leading to the first long winter precipitation reconstruction for this region. Please refer to http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.yqres.2011.01.005 for more information.

Source: Ansto

Remarkably extensive glaciation in Turkey near the Pleistocene-Holocene boundary

December 26, 2011

A new paper was published in GSA’s Journal of Geology by Zreda and others in November 2011. This is their media paragraph published in the journal’s web site: “Looking at how climate changed in the geological past can provide a useful perspective for studying modern climate change and for predicting climate changes in the next century. Dr Marek Zreda of the University of Arizona and his colleagues used mountain moraines to reconstruct the former glaciers and to determine climatic changes in Turkey at the beginning of the Holocene, the current interglacial epoch. They found that the glaciers were unusually large for that time, with snow lines lower than today by more than 1400 meters, implying a temperature 9°C lower than modern long-term average temperature. The main glacier melting phase lasted 500 years during which the ice margin retreated at the average rate of 1700 m per century, which is higher than modern gracier retreat rates computed over comparable time. This corresponds to the temperature increase at the rate of 1.4°C per century, which exceeds the global warming trend of the past century, 0.6°C, showing that natural causes can lead to fast and large climate changes, and that the magnitude and the rate of climate change observed in the past century are not unprecedented.” Please see more details and the paper here doi:10.1130/G32097.1

Ground-base LIDAR on the North Anatolian Fault

December 25, 2011

Copyright CSIRO 2003 ©

Karabacak et al. have published a study of the surface creep along the North Anatolian Fault in the EPSL. They used a ground-based light detection and ranging (LIDAR) system on an unreported site where three manmade walls across the fault were monitored for 3 yrs between 2007 and 2009. They found that 50–70% of the yearly slip accumulates on the faults creep section. Please find more info here doi:10.1016/j.epsl.2011.01.017

Holocene climate change in central Turkey

December 25, 2011

Last 6000 years climate record from Tecer Lake in central Turkey were published in Holoceneby Kuzucuoğlu et al. According to the mineralogy and grain-size distribution of lake sediments, during the mid-Holocene transition, intense droughts occured at the end of the sixth, fifth and fourth millennia BP. The characteristics of some climatic phases at Tecer seem specific to the location of the sequence which, when compared with other sites in the eastern Mediterranean, may record variations in the extent of different climatic systems. Please refer to doi: 10.1177/0959683610384163

Earthquakes cycles recorded in calcite veins

February 8, 2011

Uysal et al. 2011 have published a new study about long term seismic cycles recorded in southwest Anatolian calcite veins. The study appeared in the Journal of Earth and Planetary Science Letters. They conducted high-resolution micro-sampling, high-precision U-series dating and micro- chemical analysis on an extensional vein system in a tectonically active area. U/Th ages of the vein system is in between 23.9±0.2 ka and 11.8±0.2ka. Their study offers an innovative means of constraining the absolute timing of late Quaternary seismic and inter-seismic events in Anatolia, Turkey. For more information, please refer to doi:10.1016/j.epsl.2010.12.039

From Uysal et al. (2011) © 2010 Elsevier

Bronze age vegetation in the Middle East

August 22, 2010

by George Perfors

Deckers and Pessin have published a paper in the Quaternary Research about the Bronze age vegetation changes in the Middle Euphrates and Upper Jazirah (Syria and Turkey) based on more than 51,000 charcoal fragments of more than 380 samples from nine Bronze Age sites. Human impacts first took place within the riverine forests, and followed by land clearing within the woodland steppe. Local wood supplies at that time were still available despite the increased deforestation. For details, doi:10.1016/j.yqres.2010.07.007