Lake systems have been targets of extensive research over the past decades, since they contain in their sedimentary infills important records of the origin, development and evolution of lake basins, and of changes in the depositional processes over time. In the framework of the Russian-German project ‘PLOT - Paleolimnological Transect’, extensive fieldwork, including seismic surveys, coring, and hydrological investigations, was carried out on five lakes: Ladoga (NW Russia), Bolshoye-Shchuchye (Polar Urals), Emanda (Verkhoyansk Range), Levinson-Lessing and Taymyr (both Taymyr Peninsula). The project aims at recovering lacustrine sediments along a >6000-km-long longitudinal transect across the Russian Arctic to investigate the Late Quaternary climatic and environmental history, with a special emphasis on recovering preglacial sediments. The records shall be correlated to that of Lake El’gygytgyn (NE Russia), which represents the master record for the Siberian Arctic. The outcome of the PLOT project will be a better understanding of the temporal and spatial variability and development of the Arctic climate.
In the presentation, I will introduce the PLOT project in general and will present the key finding results, with an emphasis on the seismic data of, both, Lake Ladoga (NW Russia) and Lake Levinson-Lessing (Taymyr Peninsula). The sedimentary succession, of both lakes, records a succession of glacial, marine, fluvial and lacustrine sedimentation, allowing reconstruction of periods of ice advances, marine water inundations, lacustrine and purely terrestrial conditions. Our results are important for creating seismic facies models (glacial, marine, fluvial and lacustrine facies) for similar lakes, independently of their locations, and emphasizes the strong potential of investigating deep tectonic lake basins to improve our understanding of palaeoenvironmental changes on the Taymyr Peninsula and in the central Russian Arctic.