Loess in Hungary

Erzsébet Horváth1
1 Dept. of Physical Geography, University of Eötvös Loránd

V 2.12 in Löss und terrestrische Archive (Fortsetzung)

18.09.2012, 16:40-17:00, H8

Loess in Hungary



The loess-paleosoil sequences in Hungary provide an excellent Pleistocene climate archive for the Carpathian Basin.

The loess stratigraphy of Hungary is based on lithological, sedimentological and pedological parameters, such as intercalated paleosoils, tephra layers, loess and loess derivatives. A generalised stratigraphy was developed for the interglacial/glacial records (Pécsi, 1965, 1986, 1990; Singhvi et al., 1989) using similar soil characteristics and features for the correlation of different sites. The uppermost 30-35 m thick part of this series contains two humus horizons (h1 and h2), which are poorly developed soils, and four mainly forest steppe-like soils or pedocomplexes. These pedocomplexes from the top to bottom are: Mende Upper (MF1 and MF2), Basaharc Double (BD1 and BD2), Basaharc Lower (BA) and the Mende Base (MB1 and MB2). The lower part of the MB is a well developed brown forest soil (Parabraunerde), interpreted by Pécsi (1975, 1979, 1990) as the product of the last interglacial period (MIS 5e). In the light of thermoluminescence dating methods (Zöller 1987; Lu 1991, 1992 in: Pécsi and Richter 1996), Pécsi interpreted the BD1 paleosoil later as the last interglacial paleosoil and according to this opinion the MB soil would represent the penultimate interglacial (Pécsi and Richter 1996).

Two tephra layers of different age are intercalated in the loess-paleosoil sequences of the Carpathian Basin. The older one is intercalated in the loess between the Mende Basis (MB) and Basaharc Lower (BA) paleosoils first described by Kriván (1959) and Kriván and Rózsavölgyi (1964). Based on geochemical characteristics and the size distribution of the clinopyroxenes, the most likely origin of the Bag Tephra is the Roman or the Campanian volcanic fields in Italy, the age of the Bag Tephra is around 350 ka. Paks Tephra, the younger is in the overlying loess of MF1 paleosoil, its age is around 30 ka based on the luminescence ages of the loess, the origin is the same as the Bag Tephra based on the mineralogical and geochemical characteristics (Horváth 2001).


Based on the latest optical luminescence results (Wintle and Packman 1988, Frechen et al. 1997, Novothny et al. 2002, 2009, 2010, 2011) and AAR investigations (Oches and McCoy 1995) and the tephrochronology (Juvigné et al., 1991; Horváth 2001), it is already clear that the lower boundary of the Last-Glacial is shifted from the MB paleosoil towards to the top of the loess series.

The most recent luminescence investigations confirmed the assumption that the Last Interglacial is represented by the MF2 paleosoil in the Hungarian loess series. 


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Letzte Änderung 31.07.2012