Rock mass loss on a nunatak in Western Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica

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dc.contributor.author Hedding, D.W. (David William)
dc.contributor.author Hansen, C.D.
dc.contributor.author Nel, W.
dc.contributor.author Loubser, M.J. (Michael John)
dc.contributor.author Meiklejohn, K.I. (Ian)
dc.date.accessioned 2016-10-19T07:40:21Z
dc.date.available 2016-10-19T07:40:21Z
dc.date.issued 2016-02
dc.description.abstract This paper presents the first rock mass loss data for uncut clasts from continental Antarctica. A rock mass loss experiment using doleritic rock samples was conducted over a seven-year period, between 2008 and 2014, at the Vesleskarvet nunataks, Western Dronning Maud Land. The data show that approximately 10% of clasts suffered a mass loss that is an order of magnitude greater than the remaining 90% of clasts. Thus, the observed rock mass loss is suggested to occur in a series of events that are impossible to predict in terms of frequency and/or magnitude. However, extrapolating from the data obtained during the seven-year period indicates that rates of mass loss are slow and of the order of 1% per 100 years. Direct erosion by wind (including abrasion) as well as mechanical and chemical weathering are suggested to be responsible for rock mass loss. Rock properties, the weathering environment, and a lack of available moisture may be contributing factors to the slow rate of rock decay. This paper suggests that in this area of Antarctica, the slow rate of rock mass loss increases the longevity of existing periglacial landforms such as patterned ground and blockfields, but inhibits development of new patterned ground through the slow production of fines. en_ZA
dc.description.department Geography, Geoinformatics and Meteorology en_ZA
dc.description.librarian hb2016 en_ZA
dc.description.sponsorship The Department of Environmental Affairs and the National Research Foundation are gratefully acknowledged for logistical and financial support. This work is published under the NRF/SANAP project : Landscape and climate interactions in a changing sub-Antarctic environment (Grant no 93075). en_ZA
dc.description.uri http://instaar.colorado.edu/AAAR/index.php en_ZA
dc.identifier.citation Hedding, DW, Hansen, CD, Nel, W, Loubser, M, Le Roux, JJ & Meiklejohn, KI 2016, 'Rock mass loss on a nunatak in Western Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica', Arctic, Antarctic, and Alpine Research, vol. 48, no. 1, pp. 1-8. en_ZA
dc.identifier.issn 1523-0430 (print)
dc.identifier.issn 1938-4246 (online)
dc.identifier.other 10.1657/AAAR0015-005
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/2263/57358
dc.language.iso en en_ZA
dc.publisher Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research and Allen Press en_ZA
dc.rights © 2016 Regents of the University of Colorado en_ZA
dc.subject Antarctica en_ZA
dc.subject Rock mass loss en_ZA
dc.subject Weathering en_ZA
dc.subject Vesleskarvet en_ZA
dc.subject Western Dronning Maud Land en_ZA
dc.title Rock mass loss on a nunatak in Western Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica en_ZA
dc.type Postprint Article en_ZA


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