Microtextural analysis of quartz grains of tsunami and non-tsunami deposits – a case study from Tirúa (Chile)

Bellanova, P. and Bahlburg, H. and Nentwig, V. and Spiske, M.. (2016) Microtextural analysis of quartz grains of tsunami and non-tsunami deposits – a case study from Tirúa (Chile). Sedimentary Geology, 343. 72–84.

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Official URL: https://edoc.unibas.ch/63479/

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In order to estimate the tsunami hazard it is essential to reliably identify and differentiate tsunami deposits from other high-energy events like storms. Recently, the microtextural analysis of quartz grain surfaces was introduced as a method to differentiate between tsunami and other deposits. Using tsunami deposits sampled from a bank profile of the Tirua river (central Chile), an area that was significantly affected by the 2010 and 1960 Chile tsunamis, we tested the microtextural analysis method for its capability to identify tsunami deposits. A total of 815 quartz grain surfaces of two tsunami layers, two non-tsunami marsh sediment samples, and three reference samples from nearby beach, dune and river were analyzed using scanning electron microscopy (SEM). We grouped the detected microtexture features into five microtextural families: angularity, fresh surfaces, percussion marks, adhering particles and dissolution features. Both the tsunami deposits and reference samples reveal high numbers of fresh surfaces and percussion marks. Thus, there are no statistically significant differences between tsunami, beach, dune and river deposits in characteristics and abundances in all microtextural families. Our study indicates that the microtextural analysis of quartz grains may not be a suitable method to identify tsunami deposits in Tirua (Chile), due to local factors such as high numbers of inherited microtextures and the possible effects of the high amount of heavy minerals.
Faculties and Departments:05 Faculty of Science > Departement Umweltwissenschaften > Ehemalige Einheiten Umweltwissenschaften > Sedimentology (Wetzel)
UniBasel Contributors:Spiske, Michaela
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
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Last Modified:19 May 2020 11:31
Deposited On:19 May 2020 11:31

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