Paleomagnetism and astronomically induced cyclicity of the Armantes section; a Miocene continental red sequence in the Calatayud-Daroca basin (Central Sapin)



The Armantes section is a red-bed sequence consisting of a regular altemation (10 m scale) of reddish silts and pink/white limestones.In between these limestones, a smaller-scale bedding (2-3 m scale) is intercalated, characterised by varying carbonate content and related differences in erosion resistance. An earlier correlation of the magnetic polarity sequence of the Armantes section to the geomagnetic polarity time scale (GPTS) suggested a periodicity of 111 kyr for the large-scale cyclicity (Krijgsman et al., 1994b). The carbonate, gamma-ray and susceptibility records indicate that 4 to 5 small-scale cycles are developed in one large-scale cycle, showing that the small-scale cyclicity is related to precession and thus caused by climate forcing. We suggest that the precipitation of the carbonates is most likely related to rising ground-water levels and an increase of evaporation. This implies that the thick limestone beds would correlate to eccentricity maxima and the smaller-scale limestone beds to precession minima. Rock magnetic experiments show that the NRM in the Armantes section results from the presence of hematite and magnetite/maghemite.The relative contribution of hematite is strongly related to the lithology. Hematite is the dominant carrier in the limestones, while in the silts magnetite/maghemite prevail.

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