The mineralogy of paleosols in the Marília Formation and their importance in the environmental evolution of the Maastrichtian of the Bauru Basin in southeastern Brazil

<div><p>ABSTRACT: Soils and paleosols reflect the complex interplay between sedimentation, erosion and non-deposition. An analysis of the mineralogical components of paleosols is critical for the reconstitution of the factors, processes and environments in which they were formed. The recognition of mineralogical assemblages can reveal the environmental conditions during pedogenesis and through quantitative analysis it is possible to identify a vertical variation in mineral concentration or leaching over the paleosol profiles, indirectly pointing to environmental processes that dominated during the pedogenetic evolution. The objective of this study is to discuss the significance of mineral phases and to quantify the environmental evolution and degree of development of paleosols of the Marília Formation, Maastrichtian of Bauru Basin. Three sections have been described (A1, A2, A3) in the Marília Formation. The mineralogy was determined by x-ray diffraction, and mineral quantification was obtained through the Rietveld refinement method. The calcretes of the Marília Formation are pedogenic, mostly authigenic minerals. The variation of quartz, calcite, palygorskite and smectite, the micromorphology, and the diversity of subsurface horizons (Bkm, Btkm, Bt) indicate that the studied paleosols did develop in semi-arid conditions, with episodes of higher rainfall rates, humidity, leaching and desilication.</p></div>