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Tracking mineral and geochemical characteristics of Holocene lake sediments: the case of Hotagen, west-central Sweden
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-9505-9974
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry.
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Ecology and Environmental Sciences.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2001-5077
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Ecology and Environmental Sciences.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-5634-8602
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2021 (English)In: Journal of Soils and Sediments, ISSN 1439-0108, E-ISSN 1614-7480, Vol. 21, no 9, p. 3150-3168Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose: Intact lake sediments reflect the development of terrestrial ecosystems. This development can be understood by decoding mineral and geochemical information of sedimentary archives. Therefore, we characterized a Holocene lake sediment core and revealed bulk to micro-scale variations via a combination of geochemical techniques and statistical methods.

Methods: A 2.3 m sediment core was collected from Hotagen, a lake in west-central Sweden; a sediment sample was collected every 5 cm. A part of each sediment sample was kept untreated (named bulk) and another part was size-fractionated into < 4, 4–16, 16–64, and > 64 µm subsamples. Characterization was then made with respect to grain size distribution (GSD), physico-chemical parameters, geochemical properties, organic composition, and mineralogy. The sediments were investigated at bulk, micro-, and elemental scales using powder X-ray diffraction (XRD), diffuse reflectance infrared Fourier transform spectroscopy (DRIFT), and scanning electron microscopy coupled to energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (SEM–EDX).

Results: The deepest sediment was identified as glacial till dating back to the Late Pleistocene. The bulk sediments showed a clear distinction between 0–195 cm (unit 1, U1) and 200–225 cm (unit 2, U2) depths. Quartz and feldspar minerals decreased and organic matter and clay minerals increased from the till towards the lower limit of U1. The development in the sedimentary properties marked the transformation of the terrestrial ecosystem from glacier-covered land to vegetated areas. This development was also well reflected by the appearance of X-ray amorphous materials and the formation of distinct organo-mineral aggregates; chlorite was the predominant clay mineral in these aggregates. The geochemical variation between U2 and U1 sediments was further established by resolving the DRIFT spectral components through multivariate curve resolution alternating least square (MCR-ALS). The U1 sediments settled over a period of ~ 7500 years and showed comparable mineral, geochemical, and organic composition. However, the size-fractionated sediments, mainly < 4 µm, showed diverse mineral and geochemical composition. Indeed, these sediments were distinct by containing relatively higher amounts of X-ray amorphous materials and clay minerals, the latter had variable Na, Mg, and K contents.

Conclusion: The combined use of geochemical and statistical approaches used in this study followed the mineral and geochemical development of sediments that had settled during the Late Pleistocene and Early Holocene Epochs. Finally, the U2 sediments marked the terrestrial ecosystem development that occurred during the late glaciation, deglaciation, and post-glaciation periods. Graphical abstract: [Figure not available: see fulltext.]

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer, 2021. Vol. 21, no 9, p. 3150-3168
Keywords [en]
DRIFT, Ecosystem development, Post-glaciation, Sediment core, Size fraction, XRD
National Category
Geochemistry Geology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-186576DOI: 10.1007/s11368-021-03012-yISI: 000679014900001Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85111312144OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-186576DiVA, id: diva2:1584515
Available from: 2021-08-12 Created: 2021-08-12 Last updated: 2022-01-12Bibliographically approved

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Kanbar, Hussein JaafarOlajos, FredrikEnglund, GöranHolmboe, Michael

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