An overview of deformation and erosion phenomena related to advancing ice sheets in lowland Europe

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    The current distribution of northern hemisphere perennial ice (outside glaciated mountain areas) is limited to the Greenland ice sheet and polar sea ice. During the Pleistocene glaciations, the ice mass grew and gave rise to the Fennoscandian ice sheet which covered northern Europe and parts of western Europe. Although the Pleistocene ice sheets have never reached the present-day territory of Belgium and modelling exercises indicate that the ice will never reach Belgium during the next 1 Ma, an ice sheet advance can not be excluded, given the uncertainty of the modelling. The geological record shows that ice sheets may drastically change the surface and subsurface environment with the creation of ice-marginal valleys, subglacial tunnel valleys, glacial basins, and glacio-tectonic deformation of the foreland. In this report, a summary of deformation and erosion phenomena will be given that have been observed in relation to glacial advances over formerly glaciated areas that, as far as the subsurface geometry and constitution is concerned, show strong similarities with the Campine area, i.e., a relatively flat area with sand-dominated Tertiary and Quaternary deposits overlying one or several thick clay layers (such as the Boom Clay).
    Original languageEnglish
    PublisherSCK CEN
    Number of pages31
    StatePublished - Feb 2014

    Publication series

    NameSCK•CEN Reports
    PublisherStudiecentrum voor Kernenergie

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