Seismic stratigraphical record of Lake Levinson-Lessing, Taymyr Peninsula: evidence for ice-sheet dynamics and lake-level fluctuations since the Early Weichselian

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Abstract

A multi-channel, high-resolution seismic reflection survey using a Micro-GI airgun was carried out in the framework of the Russian-German project PLOT (Paleolimnological Transect) on Lake Levinson-Lessing, Taymyr Peninsula, in 2016. In total, ~70 km of seismic reflection profiles revealed in unprecedented detail the glacial and postglacial sedimentary infill of the lake basin. Five main seismic units have been recognized and interpreted as glacial (Unit V), subglacial and proglacial (Unit IV), marine (Unit III), fluvial-lacustrine (Unit II) and lacustrine (Unit I) sediments. Of particular significance are imbricated, south-orientated structures present in the southernmost part of the lake basin within Unit V and a large topographic ridge recognized in front of those structures. We interpret these structures as push moraines and an end moraine, respectively, left by the glacier after its retreat. The depositional pattern of the units above the moraines documents past lake-level fluctuations. We interpret Unit IV, Unit III and Unit I as highstand deposits, and Unit II as lowstand deposits. Gas-charged sediments dominate the northern part of the lake basin, whilst they occur only sporadically and in limited spatial extent in the central and southern parts of the lake. In the latter areas, the seismic and echo-sounder data suggest recent tectonic activity. Our study contributes to the reconstruction of environmental conditions in the Taymyr Peninsula directly following the Early Weichselian deglaciation and shows that deep tectonic lake basins affected by several glaciations can preserve important palaeoenvironmental records, which contributes significantly to our understanding of palaeoenvironmental changes in the Taymyr Peninsula and the central Russian Arctic.

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Lebas, E., Krastel, S., Wagner, B., Gromig, R., Fedorov, G., Baumer, M., … Haflidason, H. (2019). Seismic stratigraphical record of Lake Levinson-Lessing, Taymyr Peninsula: evidence for ice-sheet dynamics and lake-level fluctuations since the Early Weichselian. Boreas, 48(2), 470–487. https://doi.org/10.1111/bor.12381

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