Soil formation on the territory of ice-free oasis of the continental Antarctica was studied on example of Untersee Valley, Queen Maud Land (QML), Eastern Antarctica. Soils of the Lake Untersee surroundings were characterized in terms of morphology and main chemical and physical properties for the first time. Dominating soils are basically characterized by a poorly differentiated soil profile, with a horizon Cryic type located directly on the parent material. The predominant parent material types of the Untersee Valley are the glacial, fluvioglacial sandy loams and gravels with a large content of differently sized fragments, as well as glacial-lacustrine sandy-loams and loamy-clays. A characteristic feature of glacial and fluvioglacial deposits is their sorting as a consequence of the cryoturbation process. The main meso-relief forms of the Valley include terminal type complexes of moraine hills and ridges, eskers, drumlins, sandurs, patterned grounds, and pingo. The investigated soils are characterized by a low content of organic matter and low intensity of weathering processes in parent material as a function of low biogenic and abiogenic interactions in severe bioclimatic conditions of the Antarctic intercontinental oases.
Shamilishvili, G., Abakumov, E. V., & Andersen, D. (2020). Biogenic-abiogenic interactions and soil formation in extreme conditions of untersee oasis, surroundings of lake untersee, central queen maud land, East Antarctica. In Lecture Notes in Earth System Sciences (pp. 457–479). Springer International Publishing. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-21614-6_25