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  • 1
    Publication Date: 2015-01-23
    Description: Fast revegetation by means of sowing seed mixture of shrub and herbaceous species is a measure to prevent bare soils from wind and water erosion. Field experiment was used to test the effect of species selection and the ratio of shrub to herbaceous species on vegetation formation and shrub growth. Results showed that herbaceous species hastened cover formation and maintained a high coverage for longer period. However, the growth of shrubs was hindered. In North China Plain or where the soil and climate are similar, the ratio of shrub to herbaceous seeds is proposed to be 6:4–7:3 (weight ratio). Among the herbaceous species tested, Festuca arundinacea Schreb. grows relatively slow so it should be mixed with other fast-growing species in the practice of rapid revegetation, and a seeding density lower than 6 g m−2 is proposed when applied; Orychophragmus violaceus O. E. Schulz. wilts when the seeds are ripe, leading to a significant decrease of coverage, so other species with different phenology should be involved when it is applied; Viola philippica Car. is a good ground cover plant, which grows fast and maintains a stable coverage form July to October, and a seeding density of 1.5 g m−2 is proposed for rapid revegetation.
    Electronic ISSN: 1869-9537
    Topics: Geosciences
    Published by Copernicus on behalf of European Geosciences Union (EGU).
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  • 2
    Publication Date: 2015-08-07
    Description: TEX86 (TetraEther indeX of glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraethers (GDGTs) with 86 carbon atoms) has been widely applied to reconstruct (paleo-) sea surface temperature (SST). While Marine Group I (MG I) Thaumarchaeota have been commonly believed to be the source for GDGTs, Marine Group II (MG II Euryarchaeota) have recently been suggested to contribute significantly to the GDGT pool in the ocean. However, little is known how the MG II Euryarchaeota-derived GDGTs may influence TEX86 in marine sediment record. In this study, we characterize MG II Euryarchaeota-produced GDGTs and assess the likely effect of these tetraether lipids on TEX86. Analyses of core lipid (CL-) and intact polar lipid (IPL-) based GDGTs, 454 sequencing and quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) targeting MG II Euryarchaeota were performed on suspended particulate matter (SPM) and surface sediments collected along a salinity gradient from the lower Pearl River (river water) and its estuary (mixing water) to the coastal South China Sea (seawater). The results showed that the community composition varied along the salinity gradient with MG II Euryarchaeota as the second dominant group in the mixing water and seawater. qPCR data indicated that the abundance of MG II Euryarchaeota in the mixing water was three to four orders of magnitude higher than the river water and seawater. Significant linear correlations were observed between the gene abundance ratio of MG II Euryarchaeota vs. total archaea and the relative abundance of GDGTs-1, -2, -3, or -4 as well as the ring index based on these compounds, which collectively suggest that MG II Euryarchaeota may actively produce GDGTs in the water column. These results also show strong evidence that MG II Euryarchaeota synthesizing GDGTs with 1–4 cyclopentane moieties may bias TEX86 in the water column and sediments. This study highlights that valid interpretation of TEX86 in sediment record, particularly in coastal oceans, needs to consider the contribution from MG II Euryarchaeota.
    Print ISSN: 1810-6277
    Electronic ISSN: 1810-6285
    Topics: Biology , Geosciences
    Published by Copernicus on behalf of European Geosciences Union (EGU).
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  • 3
    Publication Date: 2015-11-03
    Description: Iron oxide compounds constitute an important component of mineral dust aerosols. Several previous studies have shown that these minerals are strong absorbers at visible wavelengths and thus that they play a critical role in the overall climate perturbation caused by dust aerosols. When compiling a database of complex refractive indices of possible mineral species of iron oxides to study their optical properties, we found that uniformly continuous optical constants for a single type of iron oxide in the wavelength range between 0.2 and 50 μm are very scarce, and that the use of hematite to represent all molecular or mineral iron-oxides types is a popular hypothesis. However, the crucial problem is that three continuous data sets for complex refractive indices of hematite are employed in climate models, but there are significant differences between them. Thus, the real role of iron oxides in the optical properties of dust aerosols becomes a key scientific question, and we address this problem by considering different refractive indices, size distributions and more logical weight fractions and mixing states of hematite. Based on the microscopic observations, a semi-external mixture that employs an external mixture between Fe aggregates and other minerals and partly internal mixing between iron oxides and aluminosilicate particles is advised as the optimal approximation. The simulations demonstrate that hematite with a spectral refractive index from Longtin et al. (1988) shows approximately equal absorbing capacity to the mineral illite over the whole wavelength region from 0.55 to 2.5 μm, and only enhances the optical absorption of aerosol mixture at λ 〈 0.55 μm. Using the data set from Querry (1985) may overestimate the optical absorption of hematite at both visible and near-infrared wavelengths. More laboratory measurements of the refractive index of iron oxides, especially for hematite and goethite in the visible spectrum, should therefore be taken into account when assessing the effect of mineral dust on climate forcing.
    Print ISSN: 1680-7316
    Electronic ISSN: 1680-7324
    Topics: Geosciences
    Published by Copernicus on behalf of European Geosciences Union (EGU).
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  • 4
    Publication Date: 2014-12-08
    Description: The use of branched glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraethers (bGDGTs) in loess–palaeosol sequences (LPSs) has shown promises in continental palaeotemperature reconstructions. Thus far, however, little is known about the effect of soil moisture on their distributions in the water-limited Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP). In this study, the relationships between environmental variables and the cyclization of branched tetraethers (CBT) were investigated in arid–subhumid China using 97 surface soils in the CLP and its vicinity, as well as 78 soils with pH 〉 7 which have been previously published. We find that CBT correlates best with soil water content (SWC) or mean annual precipitation (MAP) for the overall data set. This indicates that CBT is mainly controlled by soil moisture instead of soil pH in alkaline soils from arid–subhumid regions, where water availability is a limiting factor for the producers of bGDGTs. Therefore, we suggest that CBT can potentially be used as a palaeorainfall proxy on the alkaline CLP. According to the preliminary CBT–MAP relationship for modern CLP soils (CBT = −0.0021 × MAP + 1.7, n = 37, r = −0.93), palaeorainfall history was reconstructed from three LPSs (Yuanbao, Lantian, and Mangshan) with published bGDGT data spanning the past 70 ka. The CBT-derived MAP records of the three sites consistently show precession-driven variation resembling the monsoon record based on speleothem δ18O, supporting CBT as a reasonable proxy for palaeorainfall reconstruction in LPS. The direct application of CBT as a palaeorainfall proxy in corroboration with the bGDGT-based temperature proxy may enable us to further assess the temperature/hydrological association for palaeoclimate studies on the CLP.
    Print ISSN: 1726-4170
    Electronic ISSN: 1726-4189
    Topics: Biology , Geosciences
    Published by Copernicus on behalf of European Geosciences Union (EGU).
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  • 5
    Publication Date: 2014-06-27
    Description: Branched glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraethers (bGDGTs) have been show promising for continental paleotemperature studies in loess-paleosol sequences (LPSs). Thus far, however, little is known about the effect of soil moisture on their distributions on the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP). In this study, the relationships between environmental variables and the cyclization of bGDGTs (the so called CBT index) were investigated in a comprehensive set of surface soils in the CLP and its adjacent arid/semi-arid areas. We find that CBT correlates best with soil water content (SWC) or mean annual precipitation (MAP) for the total sample set. Particularly for the CLP soils, there is a significant positive relationship between CBT and MAP (CBT = −0.0021 · MAP + 1.7, n = 37, R2 = 0.87; MAP range: 210–680 mm). This indicates that CBT is mainly controlled by soil moisture in the alkalescent soils (pH 〉 7) in arid/semi-arid regions, where it is not sensitive to soil pH. Therefore, we suggest that CBT can potentially be used as a palaeorainfall proxy on the CLP. According to the preliminary CBT–MAP relationship for modern CLP soils, palaeorainfall history was reconstructed from three LPSs (Yuanbao, Lantian, and Mangshan) with published bGDGT data spanning the past 70 ka. The CBT-derived MAP records of the three sites consistently show precession-driven variations resembling the speleothem δ18O monsoon record, and are also in general accord with the fluctuations of the respective magnetic susceptibility (MS) record, supporting CBT as a reasonable proxy for palaeorainfall reconstruction in LPS studies. Moreover, the comparison of CBT-derived MAP and bGDGT-derived temperature may enable us to further assess the relative timing and magnitude of hydrological and thermal changes on the CLP, independent of chronology.
    Print ISSN: 1810-6277
    Electronic ISSN: 1810-6285
    Topics: Biology , Geosciences
    Published by Copernicus on behalf of European Geosciences Union (EGU).
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