10th International Conference on Geomorphology
© Author(s) 2022. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Eolian chronology reveals causal links between tectonics, climate, and erg generation 

Shlomy Vainer1,2,3, Ari Matmon1, Yoav Ben Dor1,5, Eric Verrecchia2, Frank Eckardt6, and Aster Team4,7
Shlomy Vainer et al.
  • 1Institute of Earth Sciences, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, 919040 Jerusalem, Israel
  • 2Institute of Earth Surface Dynamics, University of Lausanne, 1015 Lausanne, Switzerland
  • 3Dead Sea & Arava Science Center, Mitzpe Ramon, Israel
  • 4Aix-Marseille Université, CNRS, Collège de France, IRD, INRA, CEREGE, 13545 Aix-en-Provence, France
  • 5Geological Survey of Israel, 32 Yesha'ayahu Leibowitz, Jerusalem 9692100, Israel
  • 6Dept. Environ. & Geog. Sci., University of Cape Town, Cape Town 7701, South Africa
  • 7Georges Aumaître, Didier L. Bourlès, Karim Keddadouche

Evaluating the impact and implications of eolian repositories that mark large-scale climatic transitions requires knowledge about the timing of their emplacement and the mechanisms responsible for their production, which remain highly uncertain. We apply numerical modeling of cosmogenic nuclide data, measured in the largest continuous terrestrial body of sand on Earth, to determine settings under which the sand was generated, by constraining the timing of sand introduction into the interior of southern Africa. Our findings reveal that major events of sand formation and accumulation in the Kalahari Basin occurred between ~2.2 and 1 Myr ago. The establishment of the Kalahari sand field corresponds to regional, continental, and global scale morphotectonic and climatic changes that contributed to the mass production and widespread dispersion of sand. These changes substantially altered existing habitats, thus constituting a crucial milestone for floral, faunal, and hominin evolution throughout the African continent during the Pleistocene. 


How to cite: Vainer, S., Matmon, A., Ben Dor, Y., Verrecchia, E., Eckardt, F., and Team, A.: Eolian chronology reveals causal links between tectonics, climate, and erg generation , 10th International Conference on Geomorphology, Coimbra, Portugal, 12–16 Sep 2022, ICG2022-21, https://doi.org/10.5194/icg2022-21, 2022.