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《Quaternary Sciences》 2007-02
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AEOLIAN ORIGIN OF THE RED EARTH FORMATION IN THE CHENGDU PLAIN

Qiao Yansong① Zhao Zhizhong① Li Zengyue② Wang Yan① Fu Jianli①Wang Shubing① Li Chaozhu① Yao Haitao① Jiang Fuchu①(①Institute of Geomechanics,Chinese Academy of Geological Sciences,Beijing 100081; ②Geological Data Center for Cores and Samples,Ministry of Land and Resources,Sanhe 065201)  
The Red Earth Formation is an important pedo-stratigraphical unit in Southern China. This formation is among the best Quaternary climatic records in the tropical and subtropical China. The red earth sections in the Chengdu Plain mostly consist of the uppermost Chengdu Clay,the middle vermiculated red soil (VRS) and the underlying fluvial deposits.In this study,grain size,morphology of quartz grains and rare-earth element (REE) geochemistry were analyzed for the samples taken from the Shengli section at Shuangliu County. The results were compared with the typical Quaternary loess from Ganzi County of west Sichuan Province. Grain-size distribution was determined with a Malvern Mastersizer 2000 particle analyzer with a precision less than 1%. Scanning electronic microscopy (SEM) analyses and REE measurements were carried out in the Analysis and Measurement Center,China University of Geosciences,Wuhan. The grain size analytical results indicate that the Chengdu Clay and VRS in the Shengli section consist of fine uniform particles. The distributions are bimodal,with the dominant grain-size fraction of 5~50μm,and the 63μm fraction occupies only a small amount. These are essentially similar to the grain-size distributions of the Ganzi loess samples,but differ from the multimodal patterns of the fluvial deposits underlying the VRS in this section. The grain size parameters of the Chengdu Clay and VRS are also similar to those of the Ganzi loess samples. The mean grain-sizes of the Chengdu Clay and VRS are about 7.2(6.8μm) and 7.0(7.8μm) respectively,close to those of the Ganzi loess samples,but differ from the fluvial deposits underlying the VRS. The mean square deviation values of the Chengdu Clay,VRS and Ganzi loess are similar,which are smaller than the fluvial samples,indicating a much better sorting and relatively stable depositional dynamics. The Chengdu Clay,VRS and Ganzi loess samples are positively skewed,but the fluvial samples underlying the VRS are negatively skewed. The kurtosis values of the Chengdu Clay and VRS samples are close to the Ganzi loess,which are bigger than those of the fluvial samples. SEM observations show that a majority of the quartz grains from the Chengdu Clay and VRS have irregular and angular shapes and many are characterized by sharp edges. These grain-morphology features are highly similar to those of the Quaternary eolian deposits in West Sichuan Province and Northern China,which are considered as characteristic of eolian dust deposits. The REE patterns of the Chengdu Clay,VRS and Ganzi loess samples also show extreme homogeneity,suggesting the same origin of these deposits. The results in this paper combined with the previous studies indicate that the climatic condition along the Yangtze River had a change in the Middle Quaternary,marked by the decreased vegetation cover in the glacial periods. This climatic change may be the effect of the Tibet Plateau uplift.
【Fund】: 中国地质调查局地调项目(批准号:1212010541401);; 国家自然科学基金项目(批准号:40472088)资助
【CateGory Index】: P642.132
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