Magnetic and Geochemical Properties of Andic Soils from the Massif Central, France
Abstract:Ferrimagnetic iron oxides are the key magnetic minerals responsible for enhancement of the magnetic susceptibility in soils. Soils with andic properties contain high amount of Fe-oxides, but only few attempts were made to characterize these soils using magnetic methods. Magnetic susceptibility is in particular suitable for its sensitivity and fast measurement; the presence of Fe-oxides can be easily identified directly in the field. The aim of our study is to describe main magnetic and geochemical properties of soils rich in Fe oxides derived from strongly magnetic volcanic basement.
The studied sites are located at the basalt parent rock formed during Pleistocene, Pliocene and Miocene. Investigated soils are exposed to the mountainous climate with the perudic soil moisture regime and cryic temperature soil regime. Seven basalt soil profiles with typical andic properties were analyzed down to parent rock by a set of magnetic and geochemical methods. The magnetic susceptibility was measured in situ and in laboratory using the Bartington MS2D and AGICO MFK1. Its temperature dependence was measured in order to assess phase transformations of magnetic minerals using the KLY4. Magnetic data were completed by the hysteresis, IRM and DCD measurements using ADE EV9 VSM. Geochemical data include soil reaction (pH), organic carbon, cations exchange capacity, and extractable iron and aluminium in the soil extracted by a dithionite-citrate, acid-ammonium oxalate and a pyrophosphate solution. Scanning electron microscopy was done for top/sub-soil and rock samples.
Geochemical soil properties reflecting iron oxide stability correlate well with mass-specific magnetic susceptibility. Well pronounced relationship was observed between magnetic grain size, precipitation and soil pH, second group is reflecting concentration of feri-magnetic particles and age of parent rock, and the third group reflects degree of weathering and the thermomagnetic indices expressing changes in magneto-mineralogy along the soil profiles. Influence of the weathering processes on all the measured parameters is discussed. Soil genesis is influenced by several factors, where the moisture is more important than the age of the parent material.
Acknowledgement: This study was supported by Czech Science Foundation through grant No 13-10775S.