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Grain size distributions in airborne dust, river-suspended loads, and marine sediments from southeastern Turkey (NE Mediterranean Sea)

Ediger, Vedat
Between February 2001 and January 2002, near the coast of Erdemli, southeastern Turkey, 7 airborne dust samples, 7 coastal river-suspended sediment samples, and 3 marine sediment cores were collected. The main objective of this study was to understand the interrelationships among the multisources, multitransportation paths, and changing depositional conditions around the continental shelf of the Lamas River delta. In addition to a detailed study of satellite photos to track atmospheric dust in the region, grain size analyses were conducted on airborne dust, riverine suspensions, and marine sediment (cores), and the results were interpreted using statistical data, such as mean, mode, sorting, skewness, and kurtosis. The bimodal grain size distributions of the airborne dust indicated higher rates of clayey silt accumulation between April and August when compared to the silt and sandy silt concentrations that occurred between September and March. This was explained by the presence of 2 different type source regions of Africa, although the transport mechanism was similar. Similarly, clayey silt was the dominant sedimentary material of the riverine suspensions and no major differences in the data were obtained. Grain size distribution in the 3 marine core samples reflected the presence of a modern deltaic system, where sandy silt and silty sand sediments of the inner shelf graded to clayey silt of the delta front on the midshelf, and further offshore, clayey silt sediments occurred on the outer shelf to form prodeltaic deposits. Grain size changes within the cores were explained in terms the varying source, transportation, and depositional conditions over time. As a result of this research, the contribution of atmosphere and stream sediment inputs to the Cilician Basin budget was investigated. It was thought that the results obtained in this study will contribute significantly to the different research (sedimentological, mineralogical, geochemical, etc.) to be conducted in the Eastern Mediterranean.