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Conferences and conference papers


15th International Conference on Luminescence Dating and Electron Spin Resonance, Cape Town, South Africa, 11-15 September

Abi Stone presented work that further develops the utility of the portable luminescence reader as a tool to help obtain quick estimates of sediment depositional age out in the field. Her paper was ‘ Using a portable luminescence reader for rapid age assessment of aeolian sediments across southern Africa.’

PAGES 5th Open Science Meeting, Zaragoza, Spain, 9-13 May

Will Fletcher and Abi Stone attended this meeting. Will co-convened a session ‘From the Mediterranean to the Caspian: palaeoclimate variability, environmental responses and human adaptive strategies’ and presented papers on ‘Atlantic forcing of Western Mediterranean winter rain minima during the last 12,000 years’ and ‘ Biotic response to centennial-scale climate variability in Northwest Africa: Were there Holocene analogues for current Cedrus atlantica dieback?’ as well as presented in Spanish an overview of current IPCC science at a Town Hall event and appearing on Aragon radio during the conference. Abi co-convened a session ‘Climate variability signals in groundwater (and unsaturated zone) archives’ and presented ‘Origin and fate of nitrate in the unsaturated zone of the Stampriet Basin’ and ‘Can we produce records of precipitation variation in the southern Kalahari?’.


AGU (American Geophysical Union), San Fransisco, California, USA, 12-16 December, 2016

Abi Stone co-convened a session ‘Climate variability and change in subsurface hydrology: impacts, mitigating measures and predictions’ and gave a paper ‘Palaeoclimate Records in Dryland Dunes: Progress and Remaining Challenges Utilizing the Unsaturated Zone’. During this visit she also attended a workshop on palaeosignals in groundwater, hosted by Jason Gurdak at San Francisco State University.

International Geological Congress, Cape Town, 27 August - 4 September 2016

Phil Gibbard (Cambridge) and Phil Hughes have a paper entitled “Global glaciation during glacial cycles: assessing the fine-scale division of glacial stages” at the IGC 2016. Abstract: Glaciers are known to have reached their maximum extents at a variety of times during the last glacial cycle. Some reached their maximum in Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 2 (Weichselian/Wisconsinan Stage, etc.) close to the global last glacial maximum (LGM) when global sea levels were at their lowest. Some sectors of the largest mid-latitude ice sheets in the northern hemisphere (Laurentide, British-Irish, SE Fennoscandian) appear to have reached their maximum extent around this time and these ice sheets probably dominated the global sea-level signal at the LGM.

Other ice sheets and large ice caps reached their maximum extent before this. Many reached their maximum in MIS 3, 4 or earlier (New Zealand, Patagonia, East Antarctica, Himalaya-Tibet, Cordilleran, Alaska, SW Fennoscandia). In northern Eurasia, the Barents-Kara ice sheet reached its maximum extent early in the last glacial cycle (late MIS 5). Mountain glaciers in many parts of the world advanced close to the global LGM. However, many also reached their maximum extents earlier in the last glacial cycle. The pattern of ice build-up, advances and retreats can be linked to glacier size, proximity to the major oceans (continentality) and also to changes in global solar radiation receipt at different latitudes. Improvements in geochronology offer the opportunity to assess these variations and to compare them with earlier,  Middle Pleistocene glaciations, which were the largest recorded in the Quaternary.   

UK Luminescence and ESR Meeting, 11-13 July, 2016 University of Liverpool

Dr Abi Stone will be giving an oral presentation “Using a portable luminescence reader for rapid age assessment in the Kalahari” and an poster that presents “Initial results of 3D spectral measurements on handpicked quartz grains with diverse OSL behaviours’.

Ioannina International Workshop, Ioannina , Greece 24-27 April 2016

Phil Hughes gave a talk on glaciation in Greece at a meeting on the Ioannina sediment sequence. The meeting was organised by Chronis Tzedakis (UCL) and attended by Vasiliki margari (UCL), Ian Lawson (St Andrews), Katy Roucoux (St Andrews), Graham Wilson (Chester), Jane Reed (Hull), Mick Frogley (Sussex), Richard Preece (Cambridge), Nena Galanidou (Crete) and Russell Drysdale (Melbourne). The group also went down Perama Cave to inspect the potential for speleothem studies to link with the lake sediment record.

QRA 6-8 January 2016

Dr Abi Stone and Dr Christine Lane represented the QEG research group at the Annual Discussion Meeting of the Quaternary Research Association (held at Royal Holloway University). Abi gave a presentation entitled: “Hydrostratigraphies in dryland sediments: three timescales of Quaternary Climatic change recorded in the unsaturated zone” and Christine chaired a topical session on “Interglacials”.


XIX INQUA Congress 2015, 26 July – 2 August 2015

Will Fletcher, Phil Hughes, Christine Lane , Abi Stone and PhD students Jennifer Campbell and Joanne Eagan from the QEG research group attended, presented at, convened sessions and hosted meetings during the 19th congress of the International Union for Quaternary Research. Held in Nagoya, Japan from 26th July to 2nd August, the conference theme was “Quaternary Perspectives on Climate Change, Natural Hazards and Civilisation”.

Congratulations to Joanne Eagan, who received a well-deserved prize for her poster on “Aquatic and terrestrial impacts of the mid-Holocene Mount Mazama Eruption, NW North America”.

Here’s what we all presented:

Jennifer Campbell

Oral, “A palaeoecological reconstruction of early anthropogenic impacts on the mid- to late-Holocene landscape of the Middle Atlas Mountains, Morocco”

Poster, “Holocene environmental change at a terrestrial bog, Col du Zad, in the Middle Atlas Mountains, Morocco: a multi-proxy palaeoecological approach”

Joanne Egan

Poster, “Aquatic and terrestrial impacts of the mid-Holocene Mount Mazama Eruption, NW North America”

Poster, “A revised age estimate of the Holocene Plinian eruption of Mount Mazama, Oregon using Bayesian statistical modelling”

Will Fletcher

Session Convenor, “Environmental and climatic changes in the Mediterranean” with Steffen Mischke (Reykjavik) and Christoph Zielhofer (Leipzig).

Oral, “Past interglacial vegetation and climate dynamics in the eastern Mediterranean: the case study of the third climatic cycle (Marine Isotope Stages 9 and 8) at Tenaghi Philippon”

Phil Hughes

Session Convenor, “MIS 3 Glaciation”

Invited Speaker, “Global glacier dynamics during glacial cycles: the influence of glacier size, continentality and solar radiation”

Poster, “Little Ice Age glaciers in the circum-Adriatic mountains: implications for Pleistocene glacier inception and expansion”

Christine Lane

Session Convener, “Tephras and cryptotephras and their use in studies of natural hazards and archaeology”

Invited Speaker, “Toward a Late Quaternary tephrostratigraphic framework for connecting East African palaeoenvironmental archives”

Oral, “The INTIMATE Network: INTegrating Ice core, Marine and TErrestrial records to understand abrupt climate changes”

Abi Stone

Oral, “Unsaturated zones as archives of past climates: a review of progress in providing a novel proxy for dryland continental regions”

Poster, “Rapid age assessment in the Namib Sand Sea using a portable luminescence reader”

UK Luminescence and ESR Meeting, 8-10 July, 2015 University of Glasgow

Abi Stone gave an oral presentation “Rapid preliminary age assessment in the Namib Sand Sea using a portable luminescence reader.”

3rd Oxford Deserts Conference, 16-17 April, 2015, Oxford, UK

Abi Stone gave an oral presentation “Unsaturated zones as archives of past climates: a review of progress in providing a novel approach for dryland continental regions.”

The African Quaternary (AFQUA) conference 30 January – 7th February 2015, Cape Town, South Africa.

Abi Stone and Christine Lane convened a session on “Dating and correlation of African archives of environmental change and archaeology’ and presented: ‘Rapid assessment of luminescence ages: Testing a portable luminescence reader against full OSL dating” (Abi Stone – poster presentation) and “Toward a late Quaternary tephrostratigraphic framework for connecting East African  palaeoenvironmental archives” (Christine Lane – poster presentation).


Workshop on The Nitrogen Cycle and the Anthropocene, 29 October 2014, British Geological Survey, Keyworth.

Abi Stone presented a poster “Naturally-high nitrate in unsaturated zone sand dunes above the Stampriet Basin Namibia.”

20th Windy Day Meeting, 8 October, University of Oxford

Abi Stone gave an oral presentation “Rapid assessment of luminescence ages: Testing a portable luminescence reader against full OSL dating procedures.”

14thInternational Conference on Luminescence and Electron Spin Resonance Dating, 7-11 July, Montreal, Canada

Abi Stone presented a poster “Dating large linear dunes in the southern Namib using OSL: use of portable reader and the SAR protocol.”