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Northern European Loess belt in Germany: Distribution, similarities and differences

Abstract

Pleistocene loess and loess derivates are distributed along the mountain front of the Central European Mountain Belt in northern and central Germany. The geographical distribution of aeolian sediments is characterized and controlled by different topographical situations, tectonic settings, climate, the distance to large river systems, the distance to the Scandinavian ice sheet and the distance to the shelf of the North Sea. The distribution of loess shows an increasing elevation southwards whereas sandy loess displays a characteristic elevation below 200 m. A new loess map from Germany indicates that geomorphological features like mountain ranges, valleys and graben structures variously act as barriers or sinks for loess accumulation. These features and the distribution of the aeolian sediments as well as their potential source areas, allow conclusions about the paleogeographical conditions in Germany. Such conditions could have been suitable for Paleolithic hunter and gatherer communities. In addition, examples from two regions, the Lower Rhine Embayment (LRE) and the Northern foreland of the Harz Mountains (FHM) show differences in the development of the loess-paleosol sequences (LPS). In the more humid and oceanic LRE higher humidity enhanced the periglacial processes which increased erosion, but also led to preservation of the sediments in accumulative positions. In contrast, in the more continental FHM the sediments were affected by less intensive periglacial processes and not such strong solifluction features can be detected. Finally, a synthesis of typical sediment sequences for both regions is given as an example of paleoenvironmental (landscape) development in northern Central Europe.

Resources

Bibliography

Lehmkuhl, F. (2019): Northern European Loess belt in Germany: Distribution, similarities and differences. 20th Congress of the International Union for Quaternary Research (INQUA), 25.07-31.07.2019, Dublin, Ireland

Authors Lehmkuhl, F.
Type poster
Title Northern European Loess belt in Germany: Distribution, similarities and differences
Year 2019
Organization 20th Congress of the International Union for Quaternary Research (INQUA), 25.07-31.07.2019, Dublin, Ireland
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