Articles | Volume 17, issue 4
09 Jul 2021
Research article | 09 Jul 2021
Precise timing of MIS 7 substages from the Austrian Alps
Kathleen A. Wendt et al.
No articles found.
Maria Wind, Friedrich Obleitner, Tanguy Racine, and Christoph Spötl
The Cryosphere Discuss.,
Preprint under review for TCShort summary
We present a thorough analysis of the thermal conditions of a sag-type ice cave in the Austrian Alps using temperature measurements for the period 2008–2021. Apart from a long-term increasing temperature trend, we find strong inter-annual and spatial variations as well as a characteristic seasonal pattern. Increasing temperatures further led to a drastic decrease of cave ice. A first attempt to model ablation based on temperature shows promising results.
Paul Töchterle, Simon Steidle, R. Lawrence Edwards, Yuri Dublyansky, Christoph Spötl, Xianglei Li, John Gunn, and Gina E. Moseley
Preprint under review for GChronShort summary
Cryogenic cave carbonates (CCCs) provide a marker for past permafrost conditions. Their formation age is determined by 230Th/U dating. However, samples can be contaminated with small amounts of 230Th at formation, which can cause inaccurate ages and requires correction. We analysed multiple CCCs and found that varying degrees of contamination can cause an apparent spread of ages, when really all samples formed within a single freezing event. A statistical correction method is presented.
Jan Pfeiffer, Thomas Zieher, Jan Schmieder, Thom Bogaard, Martin Rutzinger, and Christoph Spötl
Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci. Discuss.,
Preprint under review for NHESSShort summary
The activity of slow-moving deep-seated landslides is commonly governed by pore pressure variations within the shear zone. Groundwater recharge as a consequence of precipitation therefore is a process regulating the activity of landslides. In this context, we present a highly automated geo-statistical approach to spatially assess groundwater recharge controlling the velocity of a deep-seated landslide in Tyrol, Austria.
Caroline Welte, Jens Fohlmeister, Melina Wertnik, Lukas Wacker, Bodo Hattendorf, Timothy I. Eglinton, and Christoph Spötl
Clim. Past, 17, 2165–2177,Short summary
Stalagmites are valuable climate archives, but unlike other proxies the use of stable carbon isotopes (δ13C) is still difficult. A stalagmite from the Austrian Alps was analyzed using a new laser ablation method for fast radiocarbon (14C) analysis. This allowed 14C and δ13C to be combined, showing that besides soil and bedrock a third source is contributing during periods of warm, wet climate: old organic matter.
Gabriella Koltai, Christoph Spötl, Alexander H. Jarosch, and Hai Cheng
Clim. Past, 17, 775–789,Short summary
This paper utilises a novel palaeoclimate archive from caves, cryogenic cave carbonates, which allow for precisely constraining permafrost thawing events in the past. Our study provides new insights into the climate of the Younger Dryas (12 800 to 11 700 years BP) in mid-Europe from the perspective of a high-elevation cave sensitive to permafrost development. We quantify seasonal temperature and precipitation changes by using a heat conduction model.
Chao-Jun Chen, Dao-Xian Yuan, Jun-Yun Li, Xian-Feng Wang, Hai Cheng, You-Feng Ning, R. Lawrence Edwards, Yao Wu, Si-Ya Xiao, Yu-Zhen Xu, Yang-Yang Huang, Hai-Ying Qiu, Jian Zhang, Ming-Qiang Liang, and Ting-Yong Li
Clim. Past Discuss.,
Manuscript not accepted for further review
Xianglei Li, Kathleen A. Wendt, Yuri Dublyansky, Gina E. Moseley, Christoph Spötl, and R. Lawrence Edwards
Geochronology, 3, 49–58,Short summary
In this study, we built a statistical model to determine the initial δ234U in submerged calcite crusts that coat the walls of Devils Hole 2 (DH2) cave (Nevada, USA) and, using a 234U–238U dating method, extended the chronology of the calcite deposition beyond previous well-established 230Th ages and determined the oldest calcite deposited in this cave, a time marker for cave genesis. The novel method presented here may be used in future speleothem studies in similar hydrogeological settings.
Ole Valk, Michiel M. Rutgers van der Loeff, Walter Geibert, Sandra Gdaniec, S. Bradley Moran, Kate Lepore, Robert Lawrence Edwards, Yanbin Lu, Viena Puigcorbé, Nuria Casacuberta, Ronja Paffrath, William Smethie, and Matthieu Roy-Barman
Ocean Sci., 16, 221–234,Short summary
After 2007 230Th decreased significantly in the central Amundsen Basin. This decrease is accompanied by a circulation change, indicated by changes in salinity. Ventilation of waters is most likely not the reason for the observed depletion in 230Th as atmospherically derived tracers do not reveal an increase in ventilation rate. It is suggested that these interior waters have undergone enhanced scavenging of Th during transit from Fram Strait and the Barents Sea to the central Amundsen Basin.
Haiwei Zhang, Hai Cheng, Yanjun Cai, Christoph Spötl, Ashish Sinha, Gayatri Kathayat, and Hanying Li
Clim. Past, 16, 211–225,Short summary
Few studies have paid attention to the important effect of nonsummer monsoon (NSM) precipitation on the speleothem δ18O in SE China. We find the summer monsoon precipitation is equivalent to NSM precipitation amount in the area of spring persistent rain in SE China, and we discuss the relationships between seasonal precipitation amount, moisture source, δ18O, and ENSO. Characterizing the spatial differences in seasonal precipitation is key to interpreting the speleothem δ18O record.
Gina E. Moseley, Christoph Spötl, Susanne Brandstätter, Tobias Erhardt, Marc Luetscher, and R. Lawrence Edwards
Clim. Past, 16, 29–50,Short summary
Abrupt climate change during the last ice age can be used to provide important insights into the timescales on which the climate is capable of changing and the mechanisms that drive those changes. In this study, we construct climate records for the period 60 to 120 ka using stalagmites that formed in caves along the northern rim of the European Alps and find good agreement with the timing of climate changes in Greenland and the Asian monsoon.
Mike Rogerson, Yuri Dublyansky, Dirk L. Hoffmann, Marc Luetscher, Paul Töchterle, and Christoph Spötl
Clim. Past, 15, 1757–1769,Short summary
Rainfall in North Africa is known to vary through time and is likely to change as global climate warms. Here, we provide a new level of understanding about past rainfall in North Africa by looking at a stalagmite which formed within northeastern Libya between 67 and 30 thousand years ago. We find that at times more rain falls, and the associated moisture is mostly derived from the western Mediterranean during winter storms. Sometimes, water comes from the eastern Mediterranean.
Hanying Li, Hai Cheng, Ashish Sinha, Gayatri Kathayat, Christoph Spötl, Aurèle Anquetil André, Arnaud Meunier, Jayant Biswas, Pengzhen Duan, Youfeng Ning, and Richard Lawrence Edwards
Clim. Past, 14, 1881–1891,Short summary
4.2 ka eventbetween 4.2 and 3.9 ka has been widely discussed in the Northern Hemsiphere but less reported in the Southern Hemisphere. Here, we use speleothem records from Rodrigues in the southwestern Indian Ocean spanning from 6000 to 3000 years ago to investigate the regional hydro-climatic variability. Our records show no evidence for an unusual climate anomaly between 4.2 and 3.9 ka. Instead, it shows a multi-centennial drought between 3.9 and 3.5 ka.
Gayatri Kathayat, Hai Cheng, Ashish Sinha, Max Berkelhammer, Haiwei Zhang, Pengzhen Duan, Hanying Li, Xianglei Li, Youfeng Ning, and R. Lawrence Edwards
Clim. Past, 14, 1869–1879,Short summary
The 4.2 ka event is generally characterized as an approximately 300-year period of major global climate anomaly. However, the climatic manifestation of this event remains unclear in the Indian monsoon domain. Our high-resolution and precisely dated speleothem record from Meghalaya, India, characterizes the event as consisting of a series of multi-decadal droughts between 3.9 and 4.0 ka rather than a singular pulse of multi-centennial drought as previously thought.
Haiwei Zhang, Hai Cheng, Yanjun Cai, Christoph Spötl, Gayatri Kathayat, Ashish Sinha, R. Lawrence Edwards, and Liangcheng Tan
Clim. Past, 14, 1805–1817,Short summary
The collapses of several Neolithic cultures in China are considered to have been associated with abrupt climate change during the 4.2 ka BP event; however, the hydroclimate of this event in China is still poorly known. Based on stalagmite records from monsoonal China, we found that north China was dry but south China was wet during this event. We propose that the rain belt remained longer at its southern position, giving rise to a pronounced humidity gradient between north and south China.
Florian Adolphi, Christopher Bronk Ramsey, Tobias Erhardt, R. Lawrence Edwards, Hai Cheng, Chris S. M. Turney, Alan Cooper, Anders Svensson, Sune O. Rasmussen, Hubertus Fischer, and Raimund Muscheler
Clim. Past, 14, 1755–1781,Short summary
The last glacial period was characterized by a number of rapid climate changes seen, for example, as abrupt warmings in Greenland and changes in monsoon rainfall intensity. However, due to chronological uncertainties it is challenging to know how tightly coupled these changes were. Here we exploit cosmogenic signals caused by changes in the Sun and Earth magnetic fields to link different climate archives and improve our understanding of the dynamics of abrupt climate change.
Gabriella Koltai, Hai Cheng, and Christoph Spötl
Clim. Past, 14, 369–381,Short summary
Here we present a multi-proxy study of flowstones in fractures of crystalline rocks with the aim of assessing the palaeoclimate significance of this new type of speleothem archive. Our results indicate a high degree of spatial heterogeneity, whereby changes in speleothem mineralogy and carbon isotope composition are likely governed by aquifer-internal processes. In contrast, the oxygen isotope composition reflects first-order climate variability.
Ny Riavo Gilbertinie Voarintsoa, Loren Bruce Railsback, George Albert Brook, Lixin Wang, Gayatri Kathayat, Hai Cheng, Xianglei Li, Richard Lawrence Edwards, Amos Fety Michel Rakotondrazafy, and Marie Olga Madison Razanatseheno
Clim. Past, 13, 1771–1790,Short summary
This research has been an investigation of two stalagmites from two caves in NW Madagascar to reconstruct the region's paleoenvironmental changes, and to understand the linkage of such changes to the dynamics of the ITCZ. Stable isotopes, mineralogy, and petrography suggest wetter climate conditions than today during the early and late Holocene, when the mean ITCZ was south, and drier during the mid-Holocene when the ITCZ was north.
Stef Vansteenberge, Sophie Verheyden, Hai Cheng, R. Lawrence Edwards, Eddy Keppens, and Philippe Claeys
Clim. Past, 12, 1445–1458,Short summary
The use of stalagmites for last interglacial continental climate reconstructions in Europe has been successful in the past; however to expand the geographical coverage, additional data from Belgium is presented. It has been shown that stalagmite growth, morphology and stable isotope content reflect regional and local climate conditions, with Eemian optimum climate occurring between 125.3 and 117.3 ka. The start the Weichselian is expressed by a stop of growth caused by a drying climate.
C. Spötl and H. Cheng
Clim. Past, 10, 1349–1362,
M. Luetscher, M. Borreguero, G. E. Moseley, C. Spötl, and R. L. Edwards
The Cryosphere, 7, 1073–1081,
V. E. Johnston, A. Borsato, C. Spötl, S. Frisia, and R. Miorandi
Clim. Past, 9, 99–118,
Related subject area
Subject: Atmospheric Dynamics | Archive: Terrestrial Archives | Timescale: PleistocenePast climate and continentality inferred from ice wedges at Batagay megaslump in the Northern Hemisphere's most continental region, Yana Highlands, interior YakutiaEolian dust dispersal patterns since the last glacial period in eastern Central Asia: insights from a loess-paleosol sequence in the Ili BasinGround-ice stable isotopes and cryostratigraphy reflect late Quaternary palaeoclimate in the Northeast Siberian Arctic (Oyogos Yar coast, Dmitry Laptev Strait)Early last glacial maximum in the southern Central Andes reveals northward shift of the westerlies at ~39 kaThe MIS 11 – MIS 1 analogy, southern European vegetation, atmospheric methane and the "early anthropogenic hypothesis"
Thomas Opel, Julian B. Murton, Sebastian Wetterich, Hanno Meyer, Kseniia Ashastina, Frank Günther, Hendrik Grotheer, Gesine Mollenhauer, Petr P. Danilov, Vasily Boeskorov, Grigoriy N. Savvinov, and Lutz Schirrmeister
Clim. Past, 15, 1443–1461,Short summary
To reconstruct past winter climate, we studied ice wedges at two sites in the Yana Highlands, interior Yakutia (Russia), the most continental region of the Northern Hemisphere. Our ice wedges of the upper ice complex unit of the Batagay megaslump and a river terrace show much more depleted stable-isotope compositions than other study sites in coastal and central Yakutia, reflecting lower winter temperatures and a higher continentality of the study region during Marine Isotope Stages 3 and 1.
Yue Li, Yougui Song, Kathryn E. Fitzsimmons, Hong Chang, Rustam Orozbaev, and Xinxin Li
Clim. Past, 14, 271–286,Short summary
This paper finds a close tie between loess magnetic susceptibility and wind strength in the Ili Basin, eastern Central Asia, and identifies three distinct aerodynamic environments with end-member modeling analysis of grain size. The Siberian High is the dominant influence on wind dynamics, resulting in loess deposition, and acts as a teleconnection between the climatic systems of the North Atlantic and East Asia in the high northern latitudes, but not for the mid-latitude westerlies.
Thomas Opel, Sebastian Wetterich, Hanno Meyer, Alexander Y. Dereviagin, Margret C. Fuchs, and Lutz Schirrmeister
Clim. Past, 13, 587–611,Short summary
We studied late Quaternary permafrost at the Oyogos Yar coast (Dmitry Laptev Strait) to reconstruct palaeoclimate and palaeonvironmental conditions in the Northeast Siberian Arctic. Our ice-wedge stable isotope record, combined with data from Bol'shoy Lyakhovsky Island, indicates coldest winter temperatures during MIS5 and MIS2, warmest conditions during the Holocene, i.e. today, and non-stable winter climate during MIS3. New IRSL ages reveal high climate variability during MIS5.
R. Zech, J. Zech, Ch. Kull, P. W. Kubik, and H. Veit
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In this study, we tested the upper limits of U–Th dating precision by analyzing three stalagmites from the Austrian Alps that have high U concentrations. The composite record spans the penultimate interglacial (MIS 7) with an average 2σ age uncertainty of 400 years. This unprecedented age control allows us to constrain the timing of temperature shifts in the Alps during MIS 7 while offering new insight into millennial-scale changes in the North Atlantic leading up to Terminations III and IIIa.
In this study, we tested the upper limits of U–Th dating precision by analyzing three...