The Great Sandy Region of south east Queensland is home to Fraser Island, the world’s largest sand island and the adjacent Cooloola Sand Mass.  Together these large, Pleistocene aged coastal sand barriers form the terminus of the longest downdrift sediment system on the planet.  At Cooloola, several phases of dune building, stabilisation and erosion have resulted in the development of stacked dune sequences that form a chronosequence moving east to west.

Previous work in the region has focused on the surface morphology and soil development along the chronosequence and there has been extensive work carried out on the biology and hydrology of the area.  Comparatively little work has been conducted on the timing of dune emplacement and evolution of the dunefield over the Quaternary however.  This study aims to develop a robust chronostratigraphic framework for the Cooloola Sand Mass using optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dating.  With the development of a high resolution chronology for the Cooloola dunefield I aim to provide a long term record of environmental history for the region over the late Quaternary.

Funding: APA (Australian Postgraduate Award)
Advisors: Prof Jamie ShulmeisterDr Kevin WelshDr Tammy Rittenour

Project members

Daniel Ellerton

Daniel ELLERTON

PhD Candidate