Wide dispersal and deposition of distal tephra during the Pleistocene ‘Campanian Ignimbrite/Y5’ eruption, Italy

Pyle, D. M. and Ricketts, G. D. and Margari, V. and Van Andel, T. H. and Sinitsyn, A. A. and Praslov, N. D. and Lisitsyn, S. (2006) Wide dispersal and deposition of distal tephra during the Pleistocene ‘Campanian Ignimbrite/Y5’ eruption, Italy. Quaternary Science Reviews, 25 (21-22). pp. 2713-2728. DOI https://doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2006.06.008

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A trachytic volcanic ash layer is widely distributed across south-western Russia, where it is found both in well-characterised archaeological contexts close to the Don River (the Paleolithic sites of Kostenki-Borschevo (51.4°N, 39.0°E), and in undisturbed geological contexts. This ash layer has all of the characteristics of a distal tephra fall deposit: it is fine grained and unimodal with a grain size of 60–170μm, dominated by strongly elongate glass shard fragments. Chemical analysis confirms that this ash layer is a distal equivalent of the deposits of the ca 39.3ka Campanian Ignimbrite eruption of the Phlegrean Fields, Italy, and correlates with the widely recognised Y5 ash layer in marine cores in the south-eastern Mediterranean. This work shows that ash particles can be dispersed over considerable distances (>2500km) and areas (>1.5–3×106km2) during large-magnitude explosive eruptions. The volume of the products associated with this event (31–50km3 of magma erupted as fallout tephra, and a total volume of 105–210km3 of magma, or 2.5–5×1014kg) confirms the Campanian Ignimbrite/Y5 eruption as the most significant known volcanic eruption in Europe of the past 100ka. This correlation places tight constraints on the absolute ages of a number of important archaeological horizons in southern Russia.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: 2006 AREP IA51 IA52 2006 P
Subjects: 01 - Climate Change and Earth-Ocean Atmosphere Systems
Divisions: 01 - Climate Change and Earth-Ocean Atmosphere Systems
Journal or Publication Title: Quaternary Science Reviews
Volume: 25
Page Range: pp. 2713-2728
Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2006.06.008
Depositing User: Sarah Humbert
Date Deposited: 16 Feb 2009 13:03
Last Modified: 23 Jul 2013 10:08
URI: http://eprints.esc.cam.ac.uk/id/eprint/615

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