Professor Mark Bateman
Department of Geography
Professor in Palaeoenvironmental Reconstruction
+44 114 222 7929
Full contact details
Department of Geography
Geography and Planning Building
Mark Bateman received a First Class BSc in Geography from the University of London in 1991 and a DPhil from Sussex University in 1995.
In 1995 he joined the Sheffield Geography department as a PDRA to set up and run the luminescence laboratory for the Sheffield Centre for International Drylands Research.
In 1998, Mark Bateman was appointed Lecturer in Physical Geography, promoted to Senior Lecturer (2004), Reader in Palaeoenvironmental Reconstruction (2006), and awarded a Chair in 2011.
- BSc in Geography
- DPhil in Geography
- Research interests
My high profile collaborative research focuses on sandscapes as an archive for understanding past depositional processes and environmental changes which have shapes the landscape we live in.
Three themes are centred around this:
- Quaternary palaeoenvironments
- Warm and cold-climate aeolian sands
- Luminescence dating
- The Holocene humid period in the Nefud Desert: Hunters and herders in the Jebel Oraf palaeolake basin, Saudi Arabia. Journal of Arid Environments, 178.
- Long-term sediment decline causes ongoing shrinkage of the Mekong megadelta, Vietnam. Scientific Reports, 10(1).
- Pattern, style and timing of British–Irish Ice Sheet retreat : Shetland and northern North Sea sector. Journal of Quaternary Science. View this article in WRRO
- Minjiwarra : archaeological evidence of human occupation of Australia’s northern Kimberley by 50,000 BP. Australian Archaeology, 85(2), 115-125.
- Mid-Devensian climate and landscape in England : new data from Finningley, South Yorkshire. Royal Society Open Science, 6(7). View this article in WRRO
- Testing the mid-Holocene relative sea-level highstand hypothesis in North Wales, UK. The Holocene. View this article in WRRO
- The mixed‐bed glacial landform imprint of the North Sea Lobe in the western North Sea. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms, 44(6), 1233-1258. View this article in WRRO
- A low-cost bench-top research device for turbidity measurement by radially distributed illumination intensity sensing at multiple wavelengths. HardwareX, 5. View this article in WRRO
- Historical evolution and controls on mega-blowouts in northeastern Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau, China. Geomorphology, 329, 17-31. View this article in WRRO
- OSL dating of sediments samples from Karun river traces in Khuzestan, SW Iran. Journal of the Earth and Space Physics, 45(2), 299-312.
- First evidence for onshore marine isotope stage 3 aeolianite formation on the southern Cape coastline of South Africa. Marine Geology, 407, 1-15. View this article in WRRO
- Response to the discussion by Van Vliet-Lanoë et al. of the paper ‘Features caused by ground ice growth and decay in Late Pleistocene fluvial deposits, Paris Basin, France’ (Bertran et al., 2018, Geomorphology 310, 84–101). Geomorphology, 327, 629-633.
- First chronostratigraphic framework of fluvial terrace systems in the eastern Cantabrian margin (Bay of Biscay, Spain). Quaternary Geochronology, 49, 108-114.
- Late Holocene landscape instability in the Breckland (England) drift sands. Geomorphology, 323, 123-134. View this article in WRRO
- A Pleistocene Thrust Fault in Anorthosite of the Rustenburg Layered Suite near Mooinooi, North West Province, South Africa: Neotectonic Implications. South African Journal of Geology, 121(4), 421-430.
- A chronology for North Sea Lobe advance and recession on the Lincolnshire and Norfolk coasts during MIS 2 and 6. Proceedings of the Geologists Association. View this article in WRRO
- Ice marginal dynamics of the last British-Irish Ice Sheet in the southern North Sea: Ice limits, timing and the influence of the Dogger Bank. Quaternary Science Reviews, 198, 181-207. View this article in WRRO
- Mega-blowouts in Qinghai–Tibet Plateau: Morphology, distribution and initiation. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms. View this article in WRRO
- Sedimentation during Marine Isotope Stage 3 at the eastern margins of the Glacial Lake Humber basin, England. Journal of Quaternary Science. View this article in WRRO
- Sedimentary records of coastal storm surges: Evidence of the 1953 North Sea event. Marine Geology, 403, 262-270. View this article in WRRO
- Features caused by ground ice growth and decay in Late Pleistocene fluvial deposits, Paris Basin, France. Geomorphology, 310, 84-101. View this article in WRRO
- Can glacial shearing of sediment reset the signal used for luminescence dating?. Geomorphology, 306, 90-101. View this article in WRRO
- Using a portable luminescence reader for rapid age assessment of aeolian sediments for reconstructing dunefield landscape evolution in southern Africa. Quaternary Geochronology. View this article in WRRO
- The chronology of Late Pleistocene thermal contraction cracking derived from sand wedge OSL dating in central and southern France. Global and Planetary Change, 162, 84-100. View this article in WRRO
- Late Quaternary coastal evolution and aeolian sedimentation in the tectonically-active southern Atacama Desert, Chile. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 490, 546-562. View this article in WRRO
- Can sand dunes be used to study historic storm events?. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms. View this article in WRRO
- BRITICE Glacial Map, version 2: a map and GIS database of glacial landforms of the last British–Irish Ice Sheet. Boreas. View this article in WRRO
- The timing and consequences of the blockage of the Humber Gap by the last British−Irish Ice Sheet. Boreas. View this article in WRRO
- Early to mid Wisconsin Fluvial Deposits and Palaeoenvironment of the Kidluit Formation, Tuktoyaktuk Coastlands, Western Arctic Canada. Permafrost and Periglacial Processes. View this article in WRRO
- Book Review. Proceedings of the Geologists' Association, 128(2), 296-297.
- Glacial Lake Pickering: stratigraphy and chronology of a proglacial lake dammed by the North Sea Lobe of the British–Irish Ice Sheet. Journal of Quaternary Science, 32(2), 295-310. View this article in WRRO
- Persistence of Middle Stone Age technology to the Pleistocene/Holocene transition supports a complex hominin evolutionary scenario in West Africa. Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports, 11, 639-646. View this article in WRRO
- New age constraints for the limit of the British–Irish Ice Sheet on the Isles of Scilly. Journal of Quaternary Science, 32(1), 48-62. View this article in WRRO
- Devising quality assurance procedures for assessment of legacy geochronological data relating to deglaciation of the last British-Irish Ice Sheet. Earth-Science Reviews, 164, 232-250. View this article in WRRO
- View this article in WRRO The 'Lindholme Advance' and the extent of the Last Glacial Maximum in the Vale of York. Mercian Geologist, 19(1), 18-25.
- Early modern human fossils: A tale of earthquakes and cannibalism. Quaternary International, 404, 212-212.
- Vegetation and climate dynamics during the last glacial period in the fynbos-afrotemperate forest ecotone, southern Cape, South Africa. Quaternary International, 404, 136-149.
- Reconstruction and Modelling of Past Permafrost and Periglacial Environments. Permafrost and Periglacial Processes, 27(1), 3-5.
- Late Holocene aeolian sedimentation in the Tottori coastal dune field, Japan Sea, affected by the East Asian winter monsoon. Quaternary International, 397, 147-158.
- A new multi-stage recession model for Proglacial Lake Humber during the retreat of the last British-Irish Ice Sheet. Boreas, 45(1), 133-151. View this article in WRRO
- Last glacial dynamics of the Vale of York and North Sea lobes of the British and Irish Ice Sheet. Proceedings of the Geologists' Association, 126(6), 712-730. View this article in WRRO
- A late Pleistocene-Holocene multi-proxy record of palaeoenvironmental change from Still Bay, southern Cape Coast, South Africa. Journal of Quaternary Science, 30(8), 870-885.
- Instant luminescence chronologies? High resolution luminescence profiles using a portable luminescence reader. Quaternary Geochronology, 30, 141-146. View this article in WRRO
- The Quaternary coversands of southwest France. Quaternary Science Reviews, 124, 84-105.
- Palaeoenvironmental Interpretation of Yedoma Silt (Ice Complex) Deposition as Cold‐Climate Loess, Duvanny Yar, Northeast Siberia. Permafrost and Periglacial Processes, 26(3), 208-288. View this article in WRRO
- Discriminating between subglacial and proglacial lake sediments: an example from the Dänischer Wohld Peninsula, northern Germany. Quaternary Science Reviews, 112, 86-108. View this article in WRRO
- Rapid age assessment in the Namib Sand Sea using a portable luminescence reader. Quaternary Geochronology, 30, 134-140.
- Late Quaternary sea-level changes of the Persian Gulf. Quaternary Research, 84(1), 69-81.
- Understanding Late Quaternary change at the land–ocean interface: a synthesis of the evolution of the Wilderness coastline, South Africa. Quaternary Science Reviews, 99, 210-223. View this article in WRRO
- A prospectus for future geomorphological investigation of the Namib Sand Sea. Transactions of the Royal Society of South Africa, 69(3), 151-156.
- The evolution of periglacial patterned ground in East Anglia, UK. Journal of Quaternary Science, 29(4), 301-317. View this article in WRRO
- The aeolian sand record in the Trent valley. Mercian Geologist, 18(2), 108-118.
- The Landes de Gascogne (southwest France): Periglacial desert and cultural frontier during the Palaeolithic. Journal of Archaeological Science, 40(5), 2274-2285.
- Chronologies and the Quaternary record - Introduction. BOREAS, 42(2), 257-258.
- Aeolian Processes in Periglacial Environments, 8, 416-429.
- Investigating the effects of glacial shearing of sediment on luminescence. Quaternary Geochronology, 10, 230-236.
- Origin and evolution of interdistributary delta plains; insights from Mekong River delta. GEOLOGY, 40(4), 303-306.
- On the formation of sand ramps: A case study from the Mojave Desert. Geomorphology, 161-162, 93-109. View this article in WRRO
- Evidence for land degradation from aeolian sediment in the west-central free state province, South Africa. Land Degradation and Development, 23(6), 601-610.
- Luminescence dating of beach ridges for characterizing multi-decadal to centennial deltaic shoreline changes during Late Holocene, Mekong River delta. Marine Geology, 326-328, 140-153.
- Juxtaposed beach ridges and foredunes within a ridge plain - Wonga Beach, northeast Australia. Marine Geology, 307-310, 111-116.
- New evidence for large earthquakes on the Central Iran plateau: Palaeoseismology of the Anar fault. Geophysical Journal International, 189(1), 6-18.
- Evidence of Saharan dust in upper Pleistocene reworked palaeosols of North-west Sardinia, Italy: Palaeoenvironmental implications. Sedimentology, 59(3), 917-938.
- Building of shore-oblique transverse dune ridges revealed by ground-penetrating radar and optical dating over the last 500 years on Tottori coast, Japan Sea. Geomorphology.
- Coastal barrier dune construction during sea-level highstands in MIS 3 and 5a on Tottori coast-line, Japan. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology.
- Regional and global context of the Late Cenozoic Langebaanweg (LBW) palaeontological site: West Coast of South Africa. Earth-Science Reviews.
- Inland aeolian deposits of south-west France: Facies, stratigraphy and chronology. Journal of Quaternary Science.
- Dating inset terraces and offset fans along the Dehshir Fault (Iran) combining cosmogenic and OSL methods. Geophysical Journal International.
- Re-evaluation of the Last Glacial Maximum typesite at Dimlington, UK. Boreas.
- The evolution of coastal barrier systems: A case study of the Middle-Late Pleistocene Wilderness barriers, South Africa. Quaternary Science Reviews, 30(1-2), 63-81.
- Guest Editorial: Sheffield 2009-From Landscape to Laboratory and Back Again. GEOARCHAEOLOGY, 25(6), 671-674.
- Understanding geomorphic responses to environmental change: a 19 000-year case study from semi-arid central Texas, USA. J QUATERNARY SCI, 25(6), 889-902.
- New radiometric dating of water management features at the prehistoric Purron Dam Complex, Tehuacan Valley, Puebla, Mexico. J ARCHAEOL SCI, 37(6), 1207-1213.
- Identification of Younger Dryas outburst flood path from Lake Agassiz to the Arctic Ocean. NATURE, 464(7289), 740-743.
- The last interglacial sea-level high stand on the southern Cape coastline of South Africa. QUATERNARY RES, 73(2), 351-363.
- Sediment provenance of the Wilderness barrier dunes, southern Cape coast, South Africa. Terra Nova, 22(6), 417-423.
- New evidence for the age and palaeoecology of the Knysna formation, South Africa. South African Journal of Geology, 113(3), 241-256.
- The Namib Sand Sea digital database of aeolian dunes and key forcing variables. Aeolian Research, 2(2-3), 93-104.
- Beach ridge plain evidence of a variable late-Holocene tropical cyclone climate, North Queensland, Australia. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 297(3-4), 707-716.
- Geomorphic history of low-perched, transgressive dune complexes along the southeastern shore of Lake Michigan. Aeolian Research, 1(3-4), 111-127.
- Luminescence dating indicates radiocarbon age underestimation in late Pleistocene fluvial deposits from eastern England. J QUATERNARY SCI, 24(8), 916-927.
- First evidence for large earthquakes on the Deshir Fault, Central Iran Plateau. TERRA NOVA, 21(6), 417-426.
- Holocene right-slip rate determined by cosmogenic and OSL dating on the Anar fault, Central Iran. GEOPHYS J INT, 179(2), 700-710.
- First evidence for episodic flooding events in the arid interior of central Saudi Arabia over the last 60 ka. J QUATERNARY SCI, 24(2), 198-207.
- West coast dune plumes: Climate driven contrasts in dunefield morphogenesis along the western and southern South African coasts. PALAEOGEOGR PALAEOCL, 271(1-2), 24-38.
- A Holocene-late Pleistocene aeolian record from lunette dunes of the western Free State panfield, South Africa. HOLOCENE, 18(8), 1193-1205.
- A Dating Intercomparison Study on Late Stone Age Coastal Midden Deposits, South Africa. GEOARCHAEOLOGY, 23(6), 715-741.
- Agricultural slope management and soil erosion at La Laguna, Tlaxcala, Mexico. J ARCHAEOL SCI, 35(7), 1854-1866.
- Testing the applicability of a standardized growth curve (SGC) for quartz OSL dating: Kalahari dunes, South African coastal dunes and Florida dune cordons. QUAT GEOCHRONOL, 3(1-2), 137-142.
- Last Interglacial fossil elephant trackways dated by OSL/AAR in coastal aeolianites, Still Bay, South Africa. PALAEOGEOGR PALAEOCL, 257(3), 261-279.
- Luminescence dating of periglacial sediments and structures. BOREAS, 37(4), 574-588.
- The Late-Devensian proglacial Lake Humber: new evidence from littoral deposits at Ferrybridge, Yorkshire, England. BOREAS, 37(2), 195-210.
- The place of aeolian coversands in the geomorphic evolution of the southern Cape coast, South Africa. S AFR J GEOL, 110(1), 125-136.
- Age-estimate evidence for Middle-Late Pleistocene aggradation of River Nene 1st Terrace deposits at Whittlesey, eastern England. P GEOLOGIST ASSOC, 118, 283-300.
- Global environments through the quaternary. GEOGRAPHY, 92, 165-165.
- Syngenetic sand veins and anti-syngenetic sand wedges, Tuktoyaktuk Coastlands, western Arctic Canada. PERMAFROST PERIGLAC, 18(1), 33-47.
- The chronostratigraphy of late pleistocene glacial and periglacial aeolian activity in the Tuktoyaktuk Coastlands, NWT, Canada. QUATERNARY SCI REV, 25(19-20), 2552-2568. View this article in WRRO
- Late Quaternary palaeoenvironments of the winter-rainfall zone of southern Africa: Palynological and sedimentological evidence from the Agulhas Plain. PALAEOGEOGR PALAEOCL, 239(1-2), 147-165.
- Climatic and sea level controls on Late Quaternary eolian activity on the Agulhas Plain, South Africa. QUATERNARY RES, 65(2), 252-263.
- Provenance and chronology of the Barcavecchia Tufa, Southwest Etna, Sicily. BOLL SOC GEOL ITAL, 125(3), 265-272.
- Climatic control on Quaternary fluvial sedimentology of a Fenland Basin river, England. SEDIMENTOLOGY, 52(6), 1397-1423.
- Colluvial fan gravels, depositional environments and luminescence dating: A karoo case study. South African Geographical Journal, 87(1), 73-79.
- Map and GIS database of glacial landforms and features related to the last British Ice Sheet. BOREAS, 33(4), 359-375. View this article in WRRO
- Late-Holocene inland dune activity in the UK: a case study from Breckland, East Anglia. HOLOCENE, 14(4), 579-588. View this article in WRRO
- Aeolianite and barrier dune construction spanning the last two glacial-interglacial cycles from the southern Cape coast, South Africa. QUATERNARY SCI REV, 23(14-15), 1681-1698. View this article in WRRO
- Mid- to late-Holocene coastal dune event stratigraphy for the north coast of Northern Ireland. HOLOCENE, 14(3), 406-416.
- The devensian periglacial record on Thanet, Kent, UK. PERMAFROST PERIGLAC, 14(3), 217-246.
- Sedimentology of the Late Quaternary Wadi Hasa Marl Formation of Central Jordan: a record of climate variability. PALAEOGEOGR PALAEOCL, 191(2), 221-242.
- Post-processing of mineral mixture maps for mapping surficial materials: The example of the Matmata loess, southern Tunisia. International Journal of Remote Sensing, 23(15), 3091-3106.
- Book Review. Journal of Arid Environments, 50(3), 523-524.
- Holocene geochronology of a continental-shelf mudbelt off southwestern Africa. HOLOCENE, 12(1), 59-67.
- Environmental conditions and paleowind directions at the end of the Weichselian Late Pleniglacial recorded in aeolian sediments and geomorphology (Twente, Eastern Netherlands). GEOL MIJNBOUW-N J G, 80(2), 1-18.
- Luminescence chronology of river adjustment and incision of Quaternary sediments in the alluvial plain of the Sabarmati River, north Gujarat, India. GEOMORPHOLOGY, 36(3-4), 217-229.
- Dune activity as a record of late Quaternary aridity in the Northern Kalahari: new evidence from northern Namibia interpreted in the context of regional arid and humid chronologies. PALAEOGEOGR PALAEOCL, 156(3-4), 243-259.
- Late Devensian and Holocene depositional environments associated with the coversand around Caistor, north Lincolnshire, UK. BOREAS, 29(1), 1-15.
- Evidence of Late Devensian and early Flandrian processes and environments in the Idle Valley at Tiln, North Nottinghamshire. P YORKS GEOL SOC, 52, 383-393.
- Sedimentology, palaeoecology and geochronology of Last Interglacial deposits from Deeping St James, Lincolnshire, England. J QUATERNARY SCI, 14(5), 411-436.
- The timing of last-glacial periglacial and aeolian events, Twente, eastern Netherlands. J QUATERNARY SCI, 14(3), 277-283.
- Orange River alluvial terraces: is luminescence dating a useful teal?. S AFR J SCI, 95(2), 57-58.
- Thermoluminescence dates and palaeoenvironmental information of the late Quaternary sand deposits, Tierra de Pinares, Central Spain. CATENA, 34(3-4), 277-291.
- Late Quaternary dunes at Twigmoor Woods, Lincolnshire, UK: A preliminary investigation. Zeitschrift fur Geomorphologie, Supplementband, 116, 131-146.
- The origin and age of coversand in north Lincolnshire, UK. PERMAFROST PERIGLAC, 9(4), 313-325.
- Reconstructing quaternary environments, 2nd edition. APPL GEOGR, 18(2), 193-193.
- Museums: A palliative or solution for declining historical mines?. EPISODES, 21(1), 32-36.
- Development and environmental significance of an eolian sand ramp of last-glacial age, central Iran. QUATERNARY RES, 48(2), 155-161.
- The dating of linear banks found at Tiln, North Northamptonshire, using thermoluminescence. East Midland Geographer, 20(1-2), 42-49.
- An absolute chronology for the raised beach and associated deposits at Sewerby, East Yorkshire, England. J QUATERNARY SCI, 11(5), 389-395.
- Tsunami sedimentation associated with the Lisbon earthquake of 1 November AD 1755: Boca do Rio, Algarve, Portugal. The Holocene, 5(2), 209-215.
- The evolution of the terrestrial-terminating Irish Sea glacier during the last glaciation.
- The application of luminescence dating in sea-level studies In Shennan I, Long AJ & Horton BP (Ed.), Handbook of Sea-Level Research (pp. 404-417). Chichester: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd..
- 8.25 Aeolian Processes in Periglacial Environments, Treatise on Geomorphology (pp. 416-429).
- Sandy coasts, Quaternary Environmental Change in Southern Africa (pp. 203-218). Cambridge University Press
Conference proceedings papers
- View this article in WRRO Late Wisconsin glaciation of Hadwen and Summer islands, Tuktoyaktuk Coastlands, NWT, Canada. GeoQuebec 2015 (pp 1-6), 20 September 2015 - 23 September 2015.
- The source of D-e variability in periglacial sand wedges: Depositional processes versus measurement issues. QUATERNARY GEOCHRONOLOGY, Vol. 5(2-3) (pp 250-256)
- Refining the OSL age of the last earthquake on the Dheshir fault, Central Iran. QUATERNARY GEOCHRONOLOGY, Vol. 5(2-3) (pp 286-292)
- Preserving the palaeoenvironmental record in Drylands: Bioturbation and its significance for luminescence-derived chronologies. SEDIMENTARY GEOLOGY, Vol. 195(1-2) (pp 5-19) View this article in WRRO
- Detecting post-depositional sediment disturbance in sandy deposits using optical luminescence. Quaternary Geochronology, Vol. 2(1-4) (pp 57-64)
- Developing a 150 ka luminescence chronology for the barrier dunes of the southern Cape, South Africa. QUATERNARY GEOCHRONOLOGY, Vol. 2(1-4) (pp 110-116)
- Developing a protocol for selecting and dating sandy sites in East Central Texas: Preliminary results. QUATERNARY GEOCHRONOLOGY, Vol. 2(1-4) (pp 45-50)
- Investigations into the potential effects of pedoturbation on luminescence dating. QUATERNARY SCIENCE REVIEWS, Vol. 22(10-13) (pp 1169-1176) View this article in WRRO
- Late Pleistocene wetting and drying in the NW Kalahari: an integrated study from the Tsodilo Hills, Botswana. Quaternary International, Vol. 104(1) (pp 53-67)
- Holocene fluctuations of Lake Ngami, Middle Kalahari: chronology and responses to climatic change. QUATERNARY INTERNATIONAL, Vol. 111 (pp 23-35)
- Extending the aridity record of the Southwest Kalahari: current problems and future perspectives. QUATERNARY INTERNATIONAL, Vol. 111 (pp 37-49) View this article in WRRO
- Evidence for eolian deposition in the sandy uplands of east texas and the implications for archaeological site integrity. GEOARCHAEOLOGY-AN INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL, Vol. 17(2) (pp 191-217)
- Geomorphic evidence for late Quaternary environmental change from the eastern Great Karoo margin, South Africa. QUATERNARY INTERNATIONAL, Vol. 89 (pp 151-164)
- Luminescence dating of loess-palaeosol sequences and coversands: methodological aspects and palaeoclimatic implications. EARTH-SCIENCE REVIEWS, Vol. 54(1-3) (pp 193-211)
- The timing and relation of aeolian sand deposition in central Spain to the aeolian sand record of NW Europe. QUATERNARY SCIENCE REVIEWS, Vol. 20(5-9) (pp 779-782)
- Palaeoclimate records from OIS 8.0-5.4 recorded in loess-palaeosol sequences on the Matmata Plateau, southern Tunisia, based on mineral magnetism and new luminescence dating. QUATERNARY INTERNATIONAL, Vol. 76-7 (pp 43-56)
- Thermoluminescence dating of the British coversand deposits. QUATERNARY SCIENCE REVIEWS, Vol. 14(7-8) (pp 791-798)
- Teaching interests
The undergraduate and postgraduate teaching I specialise in relates to understanding past changes in climate and environment which have shaped the landscape we live in. This covers the fields of geomorphology, sedimentology and Quaternary Science with the modules I contribute to trying to make inter-disciplinary linkages between these fields as well as giving student the skills required to understand the preserved record.
I have particular interests in periglacial and desert environments and each year supervise students projects in these areas.
My teaching interests reflect my research interests so I can keep students up-to-date on current developments. The style of my teachng varies from teaching out and about on fieldclasses, in the laboratory and through lectures and small group tutorials.
- Additional research projects
- Understanding former periglacial and glacial environments
During much of the Quaternary, NW Europe experienced cold, non-glacial conditions.
A legacy of these periods are the periglacial structures found in the stratigraphic record, many of which contain wind-blown material.
Unfortunately, the reconstruction of the conditions responsible for these features has been hindered both by a limited understanding of cryogenic processes and structures, and by the fragmentary nature of terrestrial Quaternary sequences.
Recent progress in understanding contemporary features indicates that the cryostratigraphical record may hold key information on the rates of climatic amelioration.
Investigations are currently being carried out to date and characterise such structures in Arctic Canada and relate them to relict evidence in NW Europe.
The work is partly funded by The Royal Society and NERC. Over 25 publications have come from this work so far.
- Erosion of dune systems in the McKenzie Delta have been dated and tied to Lake Aggassiz outburst floods which may have caused the Younger Dryas event (Nature paper)
- Work on Brecklands, UK has shown all patterned ground related to last glacial-interglacial cycle although within this features are poly-cyclic.
- The Northsea icelobe of the last British and Irish Icesheet reached its maximum limites very late within the glacial stage and was dynamic ponding up significan pro-glacail Lakes Humber and Pickering
Possible route of outburst floods from pro-glacial Lake Aggassiz. Work in McKenzie Delta showed for the first time evidence for the Northern route at just before the start of the Younger Dryas (Murton et al 2010).
A series of time slices showing the advance, dynamics and retreat of the Vale of York and North sea icelobes of the last British and Irish Icesheet (Bateman et al 2015).
Full publication list, abstracts and links for download can be found at Google Scholar
- Late Quaternary aeolian activity
Within both the winter and summer rainfall zones of Southern Africa are a range of geomorphic features indicative of aeolian activity, many of which are not presently active.
Establishing the timing and regional significance of phases of activity will inform debates about the timing and extent of major Late Quaternary rainfall zone shifts, coastline reconfigurations and environments associated with the emergence of modern humans.
This work has formed the basis of over 40 printed journal articles with past funding from Leverhulme Trust.
- An understanding of sediment 'memory' and dune dynamic responses to climate changes is critical for the extension of palaeoenvironmental records to incorporate multiple phases of aridity within specific regions.
- That complex environmental responses of dunes to climate can only be understood through the integration of humid-arid palaeorecords using detailed site investigations and lacustrine/marine - aeolian sedimentary interfaces.
- In the southern Cape coastal area there is the potential to integrate aeolian dynamics into the wider regional climatic and the archaeological record of early modern people.
- Past sea-level fluctuations and coastal reconfigurations have had a major impact on dune dynamics in the southern Cape coastline of South africa over at least two glacial-interglacial cycles.
Schematic model of the Mid-Late Quaternary evolution of the Wilderness barriers found in the southern cape South Africa (Bateman et al 2011).
- Bateman, M.D., Bryant, R.G., Foster, I.D.L., Livingstone, I., Parsons, A.J. (2012). On the formation of sand ramps: A case study from the Mojave Desert. Geomorphology, 161–162, 93–109.[pdf available click here]
- Bateman, M.D., Carr, A.S., Dunajko, A., Holmes, P.J., Roberts, D.L., McLaren, S.J., Bryant, R.G., Marker, M.E. and Murray-Wallace, C.V. (2011). The evolution of coastal barrier systems: A case study of the Middle-Late Pleistocene Wilderness barriers, South Africa. Quaternary Science Reviews, 30, 63-81.
- Cawthra, H.C., Bateman, M.D., Carr, A.S., Compton, J.S. and Holmes, P.J. (2014). Understanding Late Quaternary Change at the Land-Ocean Interface: A Synthesis of the evolution of the Wilderness Coastline, South Africa. Quaternary Science Reviews, 99, 210-223.
- Carr, A.S., Bateman, M.D., Roberts, D.L., Murray-Wallace, C.V., Jacobs, Z. and Holmes, P.J. (2010). The last interglacial sea-level high-stand on the southern Cape Coastline of South Africa: Optically Stimulated Luminescence and Amino Acid Racemization chronologies. Quaternary Research 73, 351-363
- Advances in luminescence
The time dimension is fundamental to most Quaternary studies. Although vast advancing in dating have been made methods all require laboratory-based protocols that are not available during field sampling.
Until recently, instantly derived chronologies remained largely aspirational. It is now possible to make in field measurements of luminescence intensity which give a first order approximation for sediment age.
Research I have undertaken (funded by WHITE ROSE and RGS) has shown in the context of coastal dunes this signal can be dominated by differences in age and provide key temporal information.
Research using portable luminescence in the Namibian Sand sea has also allowed calibration of the portable luminescence single in terms of age allowing rapid evaluation of age in the field.
A separate project (funded by DFF) has be undertaking laboratory experiments to replicate conditions in the shearing zone under a glacier to see if such conditions can cause luminescence signals to reset without the need for light exposure.
- It is possible to rapidly generate accurate, high resolution down core OSL data using a portable OSL reader.
- While they do not provide an instant chronology, down core POSL profiles do provide high resolution relative age profiles to enable differentiation of older from the younger sediments, identify phases of sedimentation and temporal hiatuses.
- Conditions within the shearing zone under glaciers do hold the potential to reset the OSL signal of some grains.
High resolution portable luminescence results down two dune profiles from Holkham, Norfolk (from Bateman et al 2015).
Convertion of portable luminescence measurements to age applied to dunes of the Namib sand sea (from Stone et al 2015)
- Bateman, M.D., S. Stein, R.A. Ashurst, K. Selby (2015). Instant Luminescence Chronologies? High resolution luminescence profiles using a portable luminescence reader. Quaternary Geochronology 30, 141-146. doi:10.1016/j.quageo.2014.12.007 [pdf available click here]
- Bateman, M.D., Swift, D.A., Piotrowski, J.A. and Sanderson, D.C.W. (2012). Investigating the effects of glacial shearing of sediment on luminescence. Quaternary Geochronology, 10, 230-236.
- Stone, A.E.C., Bateman, M.D. and Thomas, D.S.G. (2015). Rapid age assessment in the Namib Sand Sea using a portable luminescence reader. Quaternary Geochronology 30, 134-140. doi:10.1016/j.quageo.2015.02.002