Preliminary study on the mineral magnetic properties of sediments from Kůlna Cave (Moravian Karst), Czech Republic

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Department of Geological and Mining Engineering and Sciences


Magnetic property variations in marine, lacustrine and loess-paleosol sequences have proved to be useful proxies in climate change studies. However in order to correctly interpret the record of the magnetic property variations it is absolutely necessary to have a good understanding of the cause of the observed variations. Most of the ambiguity in loess-paleosol studies is in distinguishing the role of pedogenesis from other climatic factors. Studying the mineral magnetic properties of the protected cave sediments which have not undergone pedogenesis allows us to determine the degree to which detrital input is climatically driven. These results will help us better understand the variations observed in the surficial loess-paleosol sequences. This study reports mineral magnetic data collected from entrance facies sediments deposited during the early Wurmian glacial stage in the Kůlna Cave. The entrance facies sediments consist of loess-like silts with varying amount of talus. The magnetic susceptibility record from these sediments shows higher values in layers originating in colder climates which is different to that commonly observed in surficial loess deposits. Higher values of magnetic susceptibility in Kůlna sediments are probably due to higher concentrations of ferromagnetic minerals (magnetite and maghemite) and due to an increased proportion of superparamagnetic grains. The magnetic mineralogy and the grainsize distribution (grains larger than superparamagnetic) appear not to change throughout the studied profiles. Higher magnetic susceptibility accompanied by an increase in the superparamagnetic fraction observed in the sediments deposited during colder periods can be explained by an increased input from a pedogenic source when the vegetation cover was reduced and the erosion rate increased.

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© 1996 StudiaGeo s.r.o. Publisher’s version of record: https://doi.org/10.1007/BF02300745

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Studia Geophysica et Geodaetica