Speleothem Science: From Process to Past Environments (Blackwell Quaternary Geoscience Series)

Speleothem Science: From Process to Past Environments (Blackwell Quaternary Geoscience Series)

By: Andy Baker (author), Ian J. Fairchild (author)Hardback

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Speleothems (mineral deposits that formed in caves) are currently giving us some of the most exciting insights into environments and climates during the Pleistocene ice ages and the subsequent Holocene rise of civilizations. The book applies system science to Quaternary environments in a new and rigorous way and gives holistic explanations the relations between the properties of speleothems and the climatic and cave setting in which they are found. It is designed as the ideal companion to someone embarking on speleothem research and, since the underlying science is very broad, it will also be invaluable to a wide variety of others. Students and professional scientists interested in carbonate rocks, karst hydrogeology, climatology, aqueous geochemistry, carbonate geochemistry and the calibration of climatic proxies will find up-to-date reviews of these topics here. The book will also be valuable to Quaternary scientists who, up to now, have lacked a thorough overview of these important archives. Additional resources for this book can be found at: www.wiley.com/go/fairchild/speleothem.

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About Author

Ian Fairchild was originally a geologist, then more specifically a sedimentologist, morphing into a physical geographer with leanings to environmental chemistry, before putting more geology back in the mix. Hence, he is now Professor of Geosystems at the University of Birmingham, UK, researching both on modern environments and interpreting those in deep time, with carbonates, waters and climates as linking themes. Andy Baker was trained as a physical geographer, and worked at the interface of geology, physical geography, and environmental engineering. He is currently a Professor at the University of New South Wales and a chief investigator in Australia s National Centre for Groundwater Research and Training.


Preface, xi Acknowledgements, xiii I Scientifi c and geological context, 1 1 Introduction to speleothems and systems, 3 1.1 What is all the fuss about?, 3 1.2 How is this book organized?, 11 1.3 Concepts and approaches of system science, 13 1.4 The speleothem factory within the karst system, 18 2 Carbonate and karst cave geology, 28 2.1 Carbonates in the Earth system over geological time, 28 2.2 Lithologies of carbonate host rocks, 34 2.3 Carbonate diagenesis and eogenetic karst, 47 2.4 Speleogenesis in mesogenetic and telogenetic karst (with contributions from John Gunn and David J Lowe), 55 2.5 Cave infilling, 64 2.6 Conclusion, 71 3 Surface environments: climate, soil and vegetation, 73 3.1 The modern climate system, 73 3.2 Water isotopes in the atmosphere, 84 3.3 Soils of karst regions, 94 3.4 Vegetation of karst regions, 102 3.5 Synthesis: inputs to the incubator, 104 II Transfer processes in karst, 105 4 The speleothem incubator, 107 4.1 Introduction to speleophysiology, 107 4.2 Physical parameters and fl uid behaviour, 109 4.3 Water movement, 114 4.4 Air circulation, 122 4.5 Heat flux (authored by David Dominguez-Villar), 137 4.6 Synthesis: cave climatologies, 145 5 Inorganic water chemistry, 148 5.1 Sampling protocols for water chemistry, 148 5.2 The carbonate system, 152 5.3 Weathering, trace elements and isotopes, 156 5.4 Carbon isotopes, 173 5.5 Evolution of cave water chemistry: modelling sources and environmental signals, 180 6 Biogeochemistry of karstic environments, 187 6.1 Introduction, 187 6.2 Organic macromolecules, 188 6.3 Pollen and spores, 198 6.4 Cave faunal remains, 199 6.5 Synthesis and research gaps, 200 III Speleothem properties, 205 7 The architecture of speleothems, 207 7.1 Introduction, 207 7.2 Theoretical models of stalagmite growth and of stalagmite and stalactite shapes, 207 7.3 Geometrical classifi cation of speleothems, 213 7.4 Mineralogy and petrology, 223 7.5 Synthesis, 241 8 Geochemistry of speleothems, 245 8.1 Analysis and the sources of uncertainty, 245 8.2 The growth interface, 249 8.3 Trace element partitioning, 255 8.4 Oxygen and carbon isotope fractionation, 263 8.5 Evolution of dripwater and speleothem chemistry along water flowlines, 277 8.6 Process models of variability over time, 281 9 Dating of speleothems, 290 9.1 Introduction, 290 9.2 Dating techniques, 291 9.3 Age distance models, 300 9.4 Conclusions, 301 IV Palaeoenvironments, 303 10 The instrumental era: calibration and validation of proxy-environment relationships, 305 10.1 Available instrumental and derived series, 306 10.2 Methodologies, 311 10.3 Case studies of calibrated speleothem proxies, 316 10.4 Questions raised and future directions, 323 11 The Holocene epoch: testing the climate and environmental proxies, 324 11.1 A brief overview of the Holocene, 325 11.2 The past millennium, 327 11.3 Holocene environmental changes: speleothem responses, 334 11.4 Questions raised and future directions, 351 12 The Pleistocene and beyond, 353 12.1 Pleistocene proxy records (ice-age climate fl uctuations defined and drawn), 353 12.2 Insights into pre-Quaternary palaeoenvironments, 361 12.3 Questions raised and looking to the future, 365 APPENDIX 1 Archiving speleothems and speleothem data, 368 References, 371 Index, 421

Product Details

  • publication date: 10/04/2012
  • ISBN13: 9781405196208
  • Format: Hardback
  • Number Of Pages: 450
  • ID: 9781405196208
  • weight: 1176
  • ISBN10: 1405196203

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