CORDIS - EU research results

Awash Baringo Correlation and Cyclostratigraphy: Human evolution and paleoclimate


Age control is central in the study of human evolution as most if not all major hypotheses in palaeoanthropology and archaeology critically depend on it. It is further generally assumed that adaptation to new environments was the catalyst to key biological and cultural innovations in our ancestral lineage. However, in most cases, a high-resolution temporal framework to test whether human evolution is driven by environmental and climate change is lacking. However, such a framework can be provided by astronomical dating or tuning.
ABCCycle (Awash Baringo Correlation and Cyclostratigraphy) therefore aims to i) construct a high-resolution astronomically-tuned age model for two key paleontological and archaeological localities in East Africa, using a novel combination of relative paleo-intensity (RPI) and rockmagnetic cyclostratigraphy in order to ii) critically test if climate and environmental change controlled the distribution and evolution of hominins in the East African Rift Valley.
This project builds upon the magnetostratigraphic expertise developed by Mark Jan Sier (MJS) during his PhD and postdoc as well as his privileged access to the drilled sediment cores of several localities from the East African Rift Valley, including Baringo/Tugen Hills Barsemoi and North Awash Region. MJS will provide entirely new approaches to the chronological and environmental control of this region by applying an integrated cyclostratigraphic approach for geological dating and correlation as has been developed at the department of Earth Sciences of Utrecht University.


Net EU contribution
€ 203 464,32
3584 CS Utrecht

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West-Nederland Utrecht Utrecht
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Total cost
No data