The Epipalaeolithic occupation of the Eastern Sahara – Aspects of a Colonisation Process

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Jan Kuper is a PhD student in project A2 “Late Quaternary High-Resolution Climate Archives in the Sahara” of the CRC 806 “Our Way to Europe”, University of Cologne (Institute of Prehistoric Archaeology). In his PhD project, he focusses on the Epipalaeolithic occupation of the Eastern Sahara.

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This postglacial reoccupation is a convenient case study to examine a migration process of colonising hunter-gatherers at relatively high temporal resolution. A key advantage of this dispersal is the fact that this population movement cannot be disputed as the desert had been uninhabitable due to hyperaridity during the Late Pleistocene for tens of millennia. Besides generic questions of origin and time, the PhD project aims at investigating why and how people spread to new and unfamiliar tracts of land.

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Jan Kuper, Project A2

Tackling these questions might not only illuminate the prehistory of the Eastern Sahara, but also help to better understand general mechanisms of migration, in particular the colonisation of uninhabited landscapes.

Necessary archaeological and environmental information for this investigation derive from both, primary data (lithic analyses of crucial sites and palaeoclimate results obtained in project A2) and a review of relevant literature. This talk will present an initial attempt to integrate these diverse data into a tentative model for the early Holocene colonisation of the Eastern Sahara.

Date, Time: 30/05/2016, 14:00 h – 14:45 h

Location: Room S12, Seminargebäude (Building 106), Universitätsstraße 37 , Cologne

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Geochronological investigation of loess-paleosol sequences in southeastern Europe

banner_bösken_2016Janina Bösken is a PhD-student working within the B project, which deals with the so called eastern trajectory of early modern human migration to Europe.

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Janina Bösken, Project B1

The B1 team from Aachen investigates the paleoenvironmental conditions during this migration and Janina’s focus lies on luminescence dating. She investigates mainly loess-paleosol sequences, but also fluvial sands within an archeological excavation are part of her research. Also, the analysis and visualization with GIS is an important aspect of her PhD.

In this presentation she will elaborate the investigation of the B1 team in Hungary, Serbia and Romania and she will show how geochronology contributes to this. Furthermore, several profiles and their timing will be shown and the challenges and implications will be explained. Finally, some examples of the GIS analysis will be presented.

Event Information:

Date, Time: 02/05/2016, 14:00 h – 14:45 h

Location: Room S12, Seminargebäude (Building 106), Universitätsstraße 37 , Cologne

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Reconstructing Environmental Conditions of the Last Glacial in the Northern Harz Foreland

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Several types of archives are used for reconstructing paleoenvironmental and paleoclimatic conditions during the quaternary. Loess-paleosol-sequences often represent the best accessible archive in terrestrial environments. The accumulation of loess is linked to cold environments whereas soil formation on loess occurs during warmer and moister periods.

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Repeating changes of climatic and environmental conditions result in accumulation and development of loess-paleosol-sequenes. Two loess-paleosol sections in the northern Harz foreland have been investigated within the second phase of the “Collaborative Research Centre 806 (CRC806) – Our Way to Europe

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Lydia Krauß, Project D1

– Culture-Environment Interaction and Human Mobility in the Late Quaternary”. We are aiming towards a better understanding of the paleoenvironmental conditions during the Weichselian in an area close to the Scandinavian ice sheet. To achieve that, a multi-proxy approach is applied. During June 2014 the two profiles Hecklingen and Zilly were cleaned, documented and sampled for sedimentological analyses. Samples were continuously taken in a high resolution of 5 cm for multi-elemental (XRF), CaCO3 content, environmental magnetism, color and grain size distribution measurements.

Event Information:

Date, Time: 02/05/2016, 14:45 h – 15:30 h

Location: Room S12, Seminargebäude (Building 106), Universitätsstraße 37 , Cologne

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Combining geochronological and stratigraphic information for Central European loess sections

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Loess-paleosol sequences (LPS) are the most extensively available archives for the reconstruction of paleoenvironmental conditions in Central Europe. A huge amount of sections were published during the past centuries providing information concerning stratigraphy, geochemical, biological or sedimentological proxy data. Luminescence dating was applied to develop a chronological framework which allows for correlations to other archives and large-scale proxy data such oxygen isotopic stages or Greenland ice core data.

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However, it is hardly possible to date short-time climatic oscillations (e.g. Dansgaar-Oeschger cycles) or transitions only at one location due to local specifics concerning accumulation rates and erosive processes. This phenomenon ends in the observation that very often dates from different localities do not match well. Thus, the integrated perspective of stratigraphy and luminescence dating from different localities could improve the chronological knowledge.

In this study, we focused on the transition from the local LGM in the sense of the maximum extent of glaciation and a following ‘terrestrial LGM’ with a maximum of aridity and coldness.

Jörg Zens

Jörg Zens, Project D1

The associated sediment sequence contains the Eltville Tephra. It was never dated directly but the surrounding sediments were dated 87 times at 15 localities with different luminescence techniques yielding ages between 13.5 and 49.6 ka. These ages were quantitatively combined to calculate a reproducible common age and compared to a new date directly from the tephra. Additionally, further luminescence ages were determined from the remaining units of the transitions zone and finally correlated to independent proxy data and chronologies.  As a result, a more reliable chronology and environmental model is presented.

Event Information:

Date, Time: 02/05/2016, 15:30 h – 16:15 h

Location: Room S12, Seminargebäude (Building 106), Universitätsstraße 37 , Cologne

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In Situ Dose Rate Determination: First Measurements by the Use of BeO OSL Dosimeters within the Purpose of Luminescence Dating

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Franz Hartung is PhD student and research associate at the Cologne Luminescence Laboratory and the project F2 of the CRC 806 “Our way to Europe” and investigates dose rate determination techniques within the context of trapped charge dating methods. Before he came to Cologne, Franz Hartung studied Physics at the TU Dresden and graduated with a diploma degree, whereas the thesis was written in the radiation Physics group (ASP) in the institute of nuclear and particle Physics (IKTP).

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