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  • Print publication year: 2017
  • Online publication date: May 2017

11 - The Stratigraphy and Chronology of the Samra Formation

from Part II: - Palaeoclimates


Sediments constituting the Samra Formation were deposited in Lake Samra, which occupied the Dead Sea basin between ~135 to 75 ka BP. Stratigraphic considerations based on specific lithological markers, allow dividing the formation into five main stratigraphic sequences, in which each represents a different lake level stage. Combining the sedimentary information with U/Th dating of primary aragonites a relative lake level curve has been created. It serves as a regional palaeohydrological monitor. The lake stood at an elevation of ~340 m mean sea level (MBMSL) during most of the last interglacial. At ~120 and ~85 ka BP the lake rose to ~320 MBMSL to later dropped to levels lower than ~380 MBMSL and at ca. ~135 and ~75 ka BP. While low stands are correlated with warm intervals in the Northern Hemisphere, minor lake rises are probably related to the development of cold episodes. The detritus dominance during the last interglacial interval suggests intense pluvial conditions and possible contribution of southern sources of wetness to the region.
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