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Veronique Erens
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Mrs. V. Erens
Paleomagnetic Laboratory
Fort Hoofddijk
Department of Earth Sciences, 
Utrecht University 
Budapestlaan 17
3584 CD Utrecht 
The Netherlands 

Phone +31 30 253 1361
Fax +31 30 243 1677


Research of Veronique Erens

Magnetostratigraphic record of tectonic-climate interactions in the Siwalik sediments of the Eastern Himalayas, Bhutan
The history of the topography in the Himalaya orogen remains a major unresolved question with important implication for understanding the erosional processes, the tectonic history and the evolution of the climate during the uplift of the Himalaya. Successful research requires a multidisciplinary approach involving geologic tools as varied as structural geology, geochronology, geomorphology, geochemistry, paleoclimatology, palynology, sedimentology and paleomagnetism. 
Despite the numerous geological investigations previously performed on the Himalayas, there are still some important unresolved questions, especially on the eastern side of the Himalaya region, in the remote kingdom of Bhutan. The eastern Himalayas provide a unique opportunity to test the effect of climate on mountain uplift. 

The late Miocene uplift of the Shillong plateau located to the south of Bhutan, in India, has created a rain shadow shielding the eastern Himalayas from monsoonal precipitation and resulting in a totally different exhumation and erosion history of this part of the Himalayas (Grujic et al., 2006). This change has likely been recorded in the Siwalik sediments that have been deposited during the formation of the Himalayas. 

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Veronique in the field
The aim of this project - which is supervised by Guillaume Dupont-Nivet, as part of his NWO VENI project - is to understand the tectonic-climatic interactions in the Siwalik sediments of the Eastern Himalayas (Buthan).
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Within a team of international geoscientists studying the Siwalik sediments in Bhutan, the aim of this research project is to date the sediments - using magnetostratigraphy - to provide the age framework for all other aspects of the project. The new paleomagnetic data of the Siwalik group in Buthan will add to previous paleomagnetic results of the Siwalik group in Pakistan and in Nepal (Ohja et al., 2000; Gautam et al., 1999, 2000), providing the first complete regional description and time frame of the detrital record of the Himalayas. 
The study section is the Siwalik group exposed in the Southwest of Bhutan, deposited during the uplift of the Himalayan foreland basin (Ojha et al., 2000) and consisting of a 2423 m thick siltstone sequence. Earlier paleomagnetic studies proved that this section is suitable for obtainig good paleomagnetic results. These will contribute to the tectonic history in the eastern part of the Himalaya orogen during the uplift.

publications Publications of Veronique Erens
  • Dupont-Nivet, G., Dai, S., Fang, X., Krijgsman, W., Erens, V., Reitsma, M. and Langereis, C.G. (2008). Timing and distribution of tectonic rotations in the northeastern Tibetan plateau, In: Burchfiel, C. and Wang, E. (eds.), Investigations into the Tectonics of the Tibetan Plateau, The Geological Society of America Special Paper 444, 7387, (doi: 10.1130/2008.2444).