The origin of centennial- to millennial-scale chronological gaps in storm emplaced beach ridge plains

Nott, Jonathan, Forsyth, Anthony, Rhodes, Edward, and O'Grady, Damien (2015) The origin of centennial- to millennial-scale chronological gaps in storm emplaced beach ridge plains. Marine Geology, 367. pp. 83-93.

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Abstract

Recent studies of tropical cyclone surge andwave emplaced beach ridge plains have shown that these sequences often contain centennial to millennial scale gaps in their chronologies. Two explanations for the gaps exist—they are due to erosion, or alternatively a cessation or substantial slowing of depositional processes suggestive of a quieter phase in intense storm activity. Differentiating between the two is important for uncovering reliable long-term storm histories from these sequences. We use landform morphology, sediment texture and luminescence chronology to determine the origin of substantial chronological gaps in a plain containing more than 100 shore-parallel ridges composed of fine-grained sand located in northeast Australia. We identify and describe the characteristics associated with both erosional and non-erosional gaps. The erosional gaps are associated with changes in orientation between ridge sets and often a high ridge with hummocky topography that appears to have been disturbed by aeolian activity. River floods likely caused the partial erosion of ridge sets. Nonerosional gaps do not display these morphological characteristics and are likely associated with quiescence in severe tropical cyclone activity. These geomorphic and chronological signatures can be used to identify different sorts of gaps in other ridge plains and are an important tool in the reconstruction of long-term storm histories from these coastal landforms. The data also suggests that fine-grained ridges can, like their coarse-grained counterparts, be predominantly deposited by storm waves and surge and their texture need not necessarily be indicative of the processes responsible for ridge development.

Item ID: 40265
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1872-6151
Keywords: cyclones, North Queensland, beach ridges, chronological gaps, fine-grained sand storm deposit, Palaeo-tropical cyclone record
Date Deposited: 25 Aug 2015 01:22
FoR Codes: 04 EARTH SCIENCES > 0406 Physical Geography and Environmental Geoscience > 040601 Geomorphology and Regolith and Landscape Evolution @ 50%
04 EARTH SCIENCES > 0406 Physical Geography and Environmental Geoscience > 040606 Quaternary Environments @ 50%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9610 Natural Hazards > 961002 Natural Hazards in Coastal and Estuarine Environments @ 100%
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