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   Science & Technology Review
2017, Vol.35, No. 6
28 March 2017

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Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 0-0.
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Abstract ( 135 )

Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 1-1.
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News Focus

Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 7-7.
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News Around

Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 9-9.
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Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 11-12.
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Special lssues

Characteristics of natural environment of the Tibetan Plateau

ZHENG Du, ZHAO Dongsheng
Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 13-22. ;  doi: 10.3981/j.issn.1000-7857.2017.06.001
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Abstract ( 241 )
Based on integrated scientific expeditions to the Tibetan Plateau since the 1950s, this study analyzes the basic characteristics of the natural environment of the Tibetan Plateau (TP). It is shown that the TP is the highest in the three major landform ladders of China, with an average elevation of more than 4000 m above the sea level. Therefore, the TP is called the "roof of the world". The TP covers a vast land with a total area of 2.5×106 km2, accounting for a quarter of the total territory of China. Because of strong uplifting since the Neogene, the TP has unique natural environmental characteristics distinctive from other regions in the world, including the high landform, the cold climate, the strong solar radiation, numerous rivers and lakes, the extensive glacier and permafrost and the abundant biodiversity. Owing to its gigantic area, the TP also enjoys a great variety of the natural environment in its interior, with a certain regional differentiation regulation. According to the principle and the methodology of the physio-geographical regionalization of the plateau, the TP could be divided into 10 physio-geographical regions of similar terrains, climates, and vegetation types, which are the Guoluo-Naqu Plateau mountain alpine shrub-meadow region, the Southern Qinghai Plateau and wide valley alpine meadow-steppe region, the Qiangtang Plateau lake basin alpine steppe region, the Kunlun high mountain and plateau alpine desert region, the Western Sichuan and Eastern Xizang high mountain and deep valley coniferous forest region, the Qilian mountains of eastern Qinghai high mountain and basin coniferous forest and steppe region, the Southern Xizang high mountain and valley shrub-steppe region, the Qaidam Basin desert region, the North Kunlun mountain desert region, and the Ngali mountain desert region.

Observations of land surface processes of the Tibetan Plateau based on the field stations network

PENG Ping, ZHU Liping
Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 97-102. ;  doi: 10.3981/j.issn.1000-7857.2017.06.012
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Abstract ( 94 )
Due to the complexity of topography and geomorphology, the worldwide research focus is now on the surface processes of the Qinghai Tibet Plateau and its adjacent areas. The High-cold Region Observation and Research Network for Land Surface Processes & Environment of China (HORN) has gradually formed. It integrates 17 stations of Chinese Academy of Sciences, for long term observations and researches of the land surface processes, including glaciers, permafrost, lakes, alpine ecosystem in the high-cold regions of China. Through the construction of the standard observation index system, the coordination of the observation instruments, the integration and the sharing of the observation data, the HORN has significantly promoted the station-level observation abilities, and played important supporting roles in the studies of the earth system, the resources and the environment sciences on the Tibetan Plateau. Some scientific results of international level have been achieved based upon the station observation data, e.g., it was found that the precipitation of the Tibetan Plateau has 3 modes, the westerly wind, the monsoon and their transition zone. These data has also provided reliable scientific basis for the decision-making of the regional economic and social development. In the future, the field observation station will co-ordinate the long-term observation and the limited objectives, and construct the alpine network of scientific data platform to better serve and support the country's major scientific and technological tasks and strategic needs.
Spescial Issues

Some scientific problems in the study of the formation and the evolution of the Tibet Plateau

ZHAO Wenjin, SONG Yang
Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 23-35. ;  doi: 10.3981/j.issn.1000-7857.2017.06.002
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Abstract ( 212 )
The Tibetan Plateau is an ideal experimental site for the study of the continent-continent collision, the orogeny, the crustal thickening mechanism and other basic theoretical problems of continental dynamics. Based on the results of three major projects carried out by the Chinese Academy of Geological Sciences and other related researches, this paper reviews the research progress from fifteen aspects and pinpoints some scientific problems to be further explored. Nine of them are related to the crust and the upper mantle, and six are related with mineral resources and seismic problems.

Salt-forming periods in the Qaidam Basin and their correlation with Quaternary glaciations and tectonic movements on the Tibetan Plateau

CHEN Andong, ZHENG Mianping
Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 36-41. ;  doi: 10.3981/j.issn.1000-7857.2017.06.003
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Abstract ( 192 )
The thick late Cenozoic sediments and the abundant mineral resources in the Qaidam Basin provide an ideal place for the research of the palaeo-climate, the tectonic movement, the basin evolution, and the salt mineralization theory. This paper reviews the saltforming dating results recorded in the drilling cores and sections in the Qaidam Basin, and compares them with the tectonic movement periods and the Quaternary glaciations on the Tibetan Plateau. The comparison results indicate that there are certain correlations between the salt forming periods and the tectonic movement periods and the Quaternary glaciations. In the salt lakes and playas one usually observes preserved salt deposits formed in the Penultimate Glaciation and the Last Glaciation, and in some places there are salt deposits formed in the Xixiabangma Glaciation, the Wangkun Glaciation and the Zhonglianggan Glaciation; in the Qarhan Salt Lake in the eastern Qaidam Basin there are only salt deposits formed since the Last Glaciation. The dry and cold climate and the expansion of glacier during the glacial environment reduce the water supply in the salt lakes, which is favourable for the salt deposits.

Phased uplift of the Tibetan Plateau

FANG Xiaomin
Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 42-50. ;  doi: 10.3981/j.issn.1000-7857.2017.06.004
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Abstract ( 312 )
The uplift of the Tibetan Plateau is the result of the collision of the India-Asia Plates with the result of the geodynamic process of the earth's lithosphere, and has profound impacts on the global and Asian climate changes, the Asian geomorphology and surface environment, and the abundant surface and underground mineral resources. Thus, the study of the uplift history of the Tibetan Plateau can not only solve the major scientific problems mentioned above, but also provide a theoretical basis for the plateau regional environmental resource exploitation and sustainable development. In this paper, we briefly review the main progresses of recent studies concerning the uplift of the Tibetan Plateau. It is shown that the Tibetan Plateau has experienced uplift processes of multiple stages and episodes, quasisynchronous but with different amplitudes, which are accelerated in a later period.
The uplift processes can be divided into three main uplift stages, those during 55~30 Ma, 25~30 Ma, and 8~0 Ma, respectively. The early uplift mainly happens in the Qiangtang and Lhasa terrains of the central-southern Tibetan Plateau during 55~30 Ma, which might be close to the modern plateau elevation and is called the "Proto-Tibetan Plateau"; they are deformation uplifts in the peripheral area, quasisynchronous but with different amplitudes. The second stage uplift mainly occurs in the Himalaya and Hoh Xil-Kunlun Mountains in the north and south of the "Proto-Tibetan Plateau" during 25~10 Ma. The "Proto-Tibetan Plateau" may have first reached its present elevation and started to squeeze its materials out to both E-W sides, resulting in the N-S extensional rifts, accompanied by a widespread deformation and uplift of the northern part of the plateau, but with limited magnitudes. Since~8 Ma, the Himalayas and NE Tibetan Plateau in the southern and northern margins of the major plateau begins to experience an accelerated uplift, manifesting as a set of episodic short intense tectonic deformation events, and finally develops into its present configuration.

Geological features, the formation and the evolution of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau

WANG Zhentao
Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 51-58. ;  doi: 10.3981/j.issn.1000-7857.2017.06.005
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Abstract ( 253 )
With its special place in the Earth, the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau is always a research hotspot to attract worldwide attentions. However, there remain many contentious issues to be further explored. This paper focuses on the analysis and the discussion of the uplift process, the geological evidences, and the formation and evolution process of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. This plateau is an unique geological unit, and has a strips-blocks interphase tectonic framework with crust of huge thickness. The geological evidences for the uplift of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau can be found in the paleontology, the sedimentology, the paleogeomorphology, the karstology and the paleomagnetism. However, these specific details of the uplift process might have different interpretations. Great progress has been made in detecting fine structures of the earth's crust and mantle. Now, some consensus has been reached among the academic circles on the location, the geometry and the movement direction of the subduction beneath the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau.

Sedimentary property and the geological significance of travertines in Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau

NIU Xinsheng, ZHENG Mianping, LIU Xifang, QI Lujing
Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 59-64. ;  doi: 10.3981/j.issn.1000-7857.2017.06.006
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Abstract ( 150 )
The Travertines may be divided into two groups, the meteogene travertines and the thermogene travertines, with not only a landscape value, but also a scientific research value. We have a wide distribution of the travertines in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau, mainly in springs and in the lacustrine environment. The formation of travertines is related with the hydrothermal activity in the interior of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau, controlled by the crust extensional activity caused by the subduction of the Indian continent and the strike-slip pull-apart process of regional faults. The travertines provide records of the paleoclimatic information and the ore-forming processes of the saline lake deposits. However, a good interpretation of the information of travetines remains a research issue. Generally, the carrier CO2 of the thermogene travertines originates from the thermal processes or even from the processes below the Earth' crust. The genetic mechanism of the thermogene travertines is related with the time and the location and is more complex than that of the meteogene travertines. Not all travertines keep records of the paleoclimatic information. So, it is on the basis of understanding the genetic mechanism of the travertines that one may rebuild the information of the paleoclimate and the lake deposits.

Lake sediments and environmental changes on the Tibetan Plateau

ZHU Liping, GUO Yun
Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 65-70. ;  doi: 10.3981/j.issn.1000-7857.2017.06.007
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Abstract ( 134 )
The study of historical environmental changes is important for understanding the general trends of climatic and environmental changes, objectively evaluating the present environment in the context of the climatic and environmental history. It provides scientific test tools for predicting future climatic and environmental changes. This paper reviews the studies of the relations between the lake sediment proxies and the climatic factors, and the reconstruction of the environmental change history in the last 20 thousand years, based upon the lake sediments, to elucidate the sensitive response of the lake sediments to the climatic changes on the Tibetan Plateau.

Research progresses on magnetostratigraphy of saline lake deposit in Qaidam Basin

SHI Linfeng, ZHENG Mianping, WANG Hailei, HOU Xianhua, QI Lujing
Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 71-76. ;  doi: 10.3981/j.issn.1000-7857.2017.06.008
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Abstract ( 179 )
Because of its thick Cenozoic saline lake sediments, the Qaidam Basin has become a hotspot of studies of the uplift of the Tibet Plateau, the paleolake evolution, the climate change and the salt resource exploration. The magnetostratigraphy is an essential dating method for such long scale lacustrine sediments. This paper reviews the early magnetostratigraphic results in the deposit centers of the Qaidam Basin, and the new three magnetostratigraphic results of kilometer-scale drill holes in detail, including the cores ZK02 and ZK05 in the Dalangtan playa, the core SG-1 in the Chahansilatu playa. Based on the new magnetostratigraphic results, the Quaternary boundary is redefined in the deposit center of the western Qaidam Basin, which provides accurate age constraints of the Quaternary climate change in the Qaidam Basin, the stepwise uplift of the Tibet Plateau, and the new brine in the sandy gravel.

Research progress in uranium-series dating method and application for saline lake of Tibet Plateau

MA Nina, ZHENG Mianping
Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 77-82. ;  doi: 10.3981/j.issn.1000-7857.2017.06.009
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Abstract ( 114 )
The saline lake deposits involve information of environmental changes during various stages of its evolution and are an important research carrier for extreme arid climates. The geochronological study is very important for reconstructing the past climate changes, as recorded in the salt lake.At present, besides the dating based on the 14C, the OSL, the ESR and the paleomagnetism, the uranium-series dating is used widely in the chronology research of the salt lake deposit. With the advancement of the dating technology,the uranium-series dating has experienced several stages:The α spectrometry,the TIMS and the MC-ICP-MS, which have made some contributions to the geochronological study of the Quaternary and the salt lakes on the plateau. And various kinds of saline minerals, such as the carbonate, the halite and the gypsum, can be used as the uranium-series dating materials. With the progress of the mass spectrometry technology, the micro dating in saline minerals becomes possible. But the uranium-series dating on saline minerals remains a research issue. So in the future, the dating researches on saline minerals will be helpful for the applications of the uranium-series dating technology for the saline lake.

Surface area variations of lakes in the Tibetan Plateau and their influencing factors

YAN Lijuan, ZHENG Mianping, QI Lujing
Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 83-88. ;  doi: 10.3981/j.issn.1000-7857.2017.06.010
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Abstract ( 162 )
The levels and the surface areas of lakes are indicators of the climate change and the climate variability. In order to assess the surface area variations of lakes in the Tibetan Plateau and their influencing factors, the surface extent of all lakes in the Tibetan Plateau is extracted from the Landsat remote sensing images of the 1970's, the 1990's, around 2000 and 2010, to develop the lake spatial database based on the RS and GIS technologies. Moreover, the annual average temperature and the annual precipitation from 1961 to 2010 at 47 weather stations are collected. It is shown that the number and the total surface area of the lakes in the Tibetan Plateau increase significantly from 1973 to 2010. The surface area variations of the lakes are mainly influenced by the increasing temperature and precipitation, as well as the decreasing evaporation. Additionally, there are other factors responsible for the changes, i.e., the glaciers, the human activities, the lake basin shape, and the recharge and discharge areas.

Monitoring of the dynamic change of Zabuye Salt Lake: A remote sensing approach

XU Wenning, BU Lingzhong, KONG Weigang, ZHENG Mianping, NIE Zhen
Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 89-96. ;  doi: 10.3981/j.issn.1000-7857.2017.06.011
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Abstract ( 174 )
Monitoring based on remote sensing provides more information as compared to the in situ monitoring from a macroscopical viewpoint. This paper proposes an optimized method for monitoring the lake from the orbit. First, we identify the lake shorelines and obtain the area of the surface brine from OLI Landsat8 satellite data. Then, we compare the lake areas obtained for the year 2014 and three seasons of the year 2015. A subtle decrease is observed from the year 2014 to 2015, in contrast with the general increase trend for Zabuye in the past decades due to the climate change, indicating the influence of the exploitation, which shows that the lithium production should be rational. Besides, the brine depth, the salinity, the lithium and boron concentrations for Zabuye Salt lake are retrieved quantitatively using the GF-1 multispectral data, and the results are in good consistency with those measured in situ, showing the reliability of our methods.

Overview of salt lake stations on Tibetan Plateau

KONG Weigang, BU Lingzhong, ZHENG Mianping, Nie Zhen
Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 103-107. ;  doi: 10.3981/j.issn.1000-7857.2017.06.013
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Abstract ( 100 )
The long term salt lake observation is of great significance in the resource exploitation and the fundamental studies of salinology. This paper reviews the background, the existing infrastructure, the equipments, and the current research progress and prospects of three salt lake stations on the Tibetan Plateau. These salt lake stations are located adjacent to the lake districts Zabuye, Dangxiongcuo, and Bange, respectively, Northern Tibetan Plateau, with rich Li and B deposits. Up to now, these three stations are equipped with instruments for hydrochemical analysis and for the meterologic and hydrographic automatic observations,and the experimental platform for brine evaporation studies is established. Based on the three salt lake stations, we have carried out continuous meterologic and hydrographic observations on the selected salt lake system and the study of the dynamic change of salt lake type Li and B deposits, and the extraction experiments of lake mineral resources, with many meaningful results. In the future, we will compile a large volume of meterologic and hydrographic data observed, and built a database for sharing by public.

Scientific basis and the strategy of sustainable development in Tibetan Plateau

XU Zengrang, ZHANG Yili, CHENG Shengkui, ZHENG Du
Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 108-114. ;  doi: 10.3981/j.issn.1000-7857.2017.06.014
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Abstract ( 184 )
This paper reviews the resources development, the industrial development, and the ecological conservation of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. Based on the discussion of the regional characteristics and the sustainability of the development in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau, the driving factors of the sustainable development are identified and the strategy of the sustainable development of the Tibetan Plateau is put forward. The conclusions include:1) The Tibetan plateau is a special highland with rich natural resources but a fragile ecosystem, with a unique culture but underdeveloped economy. 2) The sustainability of the development in the Tibetan Plateau is improving in the last 30 years. However,with the accelerated population and economical growth, the relations between the human and the environment, as well as between the human and the wildlife become a serious issue. 3) The sustainable development of the Tibetan Plateau serves an important ecological protection barrier for China and Asia, with a long history and a cultural diversity in the ethnic community area, and with Plateau's distinctive characteristics in the ecological economic zone. 4) The strategy to promote the sustainable development of the Tibetan Plateau includes the regional development led by the eco-civilization construction, driven by the scientific-technology innovation, based on a good environment protection, enhanced by the moderate density economical and social development characterized and supported by the agricultural and pastoral harmonization.

Strategy and countermeasures of ecological environment protection in Qaidam Basin

YANG Rongjin, SHU Jianmin, LI Xiuhong, SUN Meiying, MENG Wei
Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 115-119. ;  doi: 10.3981/j.issn.1000-7857.2017.06.015
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Abstract ( 113 )
The Qaidam Basin has important ecological functions, with rich light and heat resources and mineral resources, but a fragile ecological environment with shortage of water resources. The pressure of the ecological environment will increase with the implementation of the Overall Planning of the Qaidam Circular Economy Pilot Area. The effective coordination of the regional social, economical and industrial development and the ecological environment protection is an important measure to promote the construction of an ecological civilization in the Qaidam Basin. Based on the analysis of the eco-environmental pressure from the economical and industrial development and the situation of the regional ecological environment, the regional ecological environment protection strategies are put forward with "ecological priority", "green development concept" and "scientific and technological innovation drives".

Accounting system for products in the ecosystem of the Three-River Headwater Area

LI Fen, ZHANG Linbo, SHU Jianmin, MENG Wei
Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 120-124. ;  doi: 10.3981/j.issn.1000-7857.2017.06.016
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Abstract ( 158 )
The natural resource assessment is the basis of the assessment of the ecological civilization construction and the ecological compensation and performance. The Three-River Headwater Area of China is chosen as an example to define clearly the concepts and to quantify the methods for measuring the economic value of the products in the ecosystem. The classification and its connotation of the products in the ecosystem are analyzed. The accounting methods for the assessment indicators of the ecosystem products are established based on the point of view of the material production and the economic value. The products of the ecosystem are evaluated by using the methods of the market price and the alternative cost. It is shown that the total value of ecosystem products for the Three-River Headwaters Area is 198.643 billion RMB in 2012, which is 8.27 times of the GDP, and the per ha value of the ecosystem products provided by the natural ecosystems is 5093 RMB. The economic value of the agricultural products in the Three-River Headwaters Area is 32.75 billion RMB in 2012. The value of the clean water is 109.856 billion RMB. The value of the fresh air is 56.037 billion RMB. The ecosystem products play an important role in the natural resource assets for the Three-River Headwaters Area and its economic value far exceeds the value of the economic production. It is important to the establishment of the evaluation mechanism for the ecological protection and the outgoing audit system of the natural resource assets to include the value of the ecosystem products in the system of the national economic accounting and to build up a new performance evaluation mechanism based on ecosystem product accounting.
Scientific Community Promotion

Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 125-125.
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Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 126-126.
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Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 127-127.
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Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 128-128.
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Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 5-6.
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Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 8-8.
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Science & Technology Review. 2017, 35 (6): 10-10.
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