Lateglacial evolution of the Brenno glacier (Southern Swiss Alps) : preliminary results


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Lateglacial evolution of the Brenno glacier (Southern Swiss Alps) : preliminary results
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CH-QUAT bi-annual meeting on Geo&Archaeology, Bern, Switzerland, 24 January 2009, Programme and Abstracts
Scapozza Cristian, Fontana Georgia, Lambiel Christophe, Reynard Emmanuel
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The Lateglacial evolution of the Ticino glacier and tributaries is poorly known because of the lack of research by Quaternary geomorphologists during the last decades. In spite of the interest for the cryosphere reactions during the Lateglacial climate warming, only few scientific studies were carried out about the history of the northern valleys of the Ticino Alps during the deglaciation (e.g. Seiffert 1953, Renner 1982, Hantke 1983). Within the framework of geomorphological investigations on the Lateglacial and Holocene glacier/permafrost evolution in the Ticino Alps, the history of the Brenno glacier (Blenio Valley, Eastern Ticino Alps) during the end of the Pleistocene has been studied. The deglaciation sequence of the Blenio Valley is still not complete (Scapozza et al. 2009). Only the first glacial stadial of the Brenno glacier and the last Lateglacial stadials of the Greina region (northern Blenio valley, see Fontana et al. 2008) and of the upper Malvaglia Valley (eastern Blenio Valley, see Scapozza et al. 2008) have been unequivocally defined. For every stadial, the surface of the palaeoglacier and the depression of the Equilibrium Line Altitude (ELA) have been reconstructed on the base of geomorphological mapping.
The first individual glacial stadial of the Brenno glacier corresponds to the Biasca stadial of the Ticino glacier defined by Hantke (1983). The ELA depression of 1100-1200 meters and its morphological and glaciological characteristics allow us to correlate this stadial with the Weissbad stadial defined by Keller (1988).
In the Greina region, three stadials corresponding to the end of the Lateglacial have been identified, with an ELA depression of 110, 210 and 310-350 meters (Fontana et al. 2008).
In the upper Malvaglia Valley, three stadials corresponding to the end of the Oldest Dryas and the Younger Dryas have been identified for the Orino glacier, with an ELA depression of 290, 400-420 and 470-560 meters (Scapozza et al. 2008).
If we consider the other (fragmentary) glacial deposits of the Blenio Valley, it is possible to define a regression sequence of the Brenno glacier with 8 stadials, from the Biasca stadial to the end of the Younger Dryas. An attempt of correlation with the model "Gothard" developed by Renner (1982) and Hantke (1983) and with the model "Eastern Swiss Alps" developed by Maisch (1982) is proposed in Table 1. The following chronological conclusions are, therefore, proposed: (1) the Biasca stadial is probably the first stadial after the transition Pleniglacial - Lateglacial; (2) the stadials BRE 7 to BRE 3 are positioned between the beginning of the Lateglacial and the Bølling-Allerød interstadial; (3) the stadials BRE 2 and BRE 1 are assumed to be related to the Younger Dryas event.
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26/01/2009 10:19
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20/08/2019 16:20
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