Springer Nature is making SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 research free. View research | View latest news | Sign up for updates

Identifying paleoflood deposits archived in Zhongba Site, the Three Gorges reservoir region of the Yangtze River, China

  • 85 Accesses

  • 33 Citations

Abstract

Based on the principle that the present is the key to the past, detailed analyses, such as AMS14C dating, grain size, component and morphology of heavy minerals, micro-morphology of zircon, Rb/Sr, magnetic susceptibility and total organic carbon (TOC), were conducted to identify paleoflood sediments archived in Zhongba Site. The results indicate that the plaeoflood sediments bear great similarities with modern flood sediments in the following aspects: (1) probability cumulative curves mainly show a pattern of 3–4 segments; (2) grain-size distribution of suspended matter ranges between 3 and 10Φ; (3) the sediments are well-sorted, most of which are suspended matter (>50%); (4) the same species, quantity and morphology of heavy minerals; (5) scanning electronic microscope images show that shapes of zircon are mainly oval and nearly spheral, rounded due to long-distance transport; (6) higher Rb/Sr values (0.55 –0.66)than those of sediments from cultural layers (0.03 –0.26); (7) magnetic susceptibility values (133.73–433.05 10−6m3/kg) are lower than those of sediments from cultural layers (959.25–2442.44 10−6 m3/kg); (8) TOC (0.14%–0.33%) are lower than those of sediments from cultural layers (1.13%–2.95%). Our results demonstrate that, except for the 1981 flood, there are at least six paleoflood events that occurred during the Qing Dynasty, the middle of Song Dynasty, the early Warring States (400BC–350BC), the West Zhou Dynasty (920BC–900BC), the Xia Dynasty (2070BC–600BC), and the late Neolithic Age (3000BC–2300BC), respectively.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.

References

  1. 1.

    Sun Zhibin, Luo Longhong, Zhonba Site in Zhongxian County, in One Hundred Archaeological Discoveries During a Decade in China (ed. Li Wenru) (in Chinese), Beijing: Cultural Relic Press, 2002, 264–268.

  2. 2.

    Sheffer, N. A., Enzel, Y., Benito, G., Paleofloods in southern France — the Ardeche River, Palaeofloods, historical floods and climatic variability: applications in flood risk assessment, in Proc. of the PHEFRA International Workshop, Barcelona (eds. V. R. Thorndycraft, G. Benito, M. Barriendos, M. C.), 2003, 25–31.

  3. 3.

    Kochel, R. C., Baker, V. R., Paleoflood Hydrology, Science, 1982, 215: 353–361.

  4. 4.

    Sarah, L. B., Paul, R. B., Andrea, L. et al., 10000 yr record of extreme hydrologic events, Geology, 2000, (28)4: 335–338.

  5. 5.

    Gale, A. N., Charles, G. G., The world’s largest floods, past and present: their causes and magnitudes, Geological Survey Circular, U.S. (ed. O’Connor J. E., Costa J. E.), 2004, 1254(13): 1–10.

  6. 6.

    Yang Dayuan, Xie Yuebo, A preliminary study on paleoflood Deposit and is Level in Yellow River Valley near Xiaolangdi Village, Journal of Hohai University (in Chinese), 1997, 25(3): 86–89.

  7. 7.

    Xie Yuebo, Liu Jintao, Shen Qipeng, Paleoflood Deposits on Xiaolangdi Reach of YellowRiver, Journal of Hohai University (in Chinese), 2001, 29(4): 27–30.

  8. 8.

    Xia Zhengkai, Wang Zhanhong, Zhao Qingchun, Extreme flood events and climate change around 3500 aBP in the Central Plains of China, Science in China, Ser. D, 2004, 47(7): 599–606.

  9. 9.

    Pan Fengying, Yuan Ding, Floodwater depositional marks of lake facies deposit in Wujindang lake within Xinhua City, Journal of Nanjing Normal University (Natural Science) (in Chinese), 1996, 19(3): 78–84.

  10. 10.

    Zhu Cheng, Song Jian, You Kunyuan et al., Research on the reasons of culture interruption in Maqiao Site, Chinese Science Bulletin (in Chinese), 1996, 41(2): 148–152.

  11. 11.

    Zhu Cheng, Zheng Chaogui, Ma Chunmei et al., On the Holocene sea-level highstand along the Yangtze Delta and Ningshao Plain, East China, Chinese Science Bulletin, 2003, 48(24): 2672–2683.

  12. 12.

    Zhu Cheng, Yu Shiyong, Shi Wei, Holocene deposits and paleo-floods on the north bank of the Yangtze River, Nanjing area, Geographical Research (in Chinese), 1997, 16(4): 23–30.

  13. 13.

    Zhu Cheng, Yu Shiyong, Lu Chuncheng, Archaeology and extreme flood disaster in the Three Gorges of the Yangtze River, Acta Geographica Sinica (in Chinese), 1997, 52(3): 268–278.

  14. 14.

    Yu Shiyong, Zhu Cheng and Qu Weizheng, Role of climate in the rise and fall of Neolithic cultures on the Yangtze Delta, BOREAS, 2000, 29(2): 157–165.

  15. 15.

    Yu Shiyong, Zhu Cheng and Wang Fubao, Radiocarbon constraints on the Holocene flood deposits of the Ning-Zhen Mountains, Lower Yangtze River area of China, Journal of Quaternary Science, 2003, 18(6): 521–525.

  16. 16.

    Chen Jun, Qiu Gang, Lu Huayu et al., The geochemical evidence of monsoonal changes in Rb, Sr in Loess Plateau since 130kaBP, Chinese Science Bulletin, 1996, 41(21): 1963–1966.

Download references

Author information

Correspondence to Cheng Zhu.

About this article

Cite this article

Zhu, C., Zheng, C., Ma, C. et al. Identifying paleoflood deposits archived in Zhongba Site, the Three Gorges reservoir region of the Yangtze River, China. Chin. Sci. Bull. 50, 2493–2504 (2005). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF03183641

Download citation

Keywords

  • Zhongba Site
  • identification of paleoflood deposits
  • shape of zircon
  • Rb/Sr
  • magnetic susceptibility
  • geochemistry indexes