Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/cp-2018-79
https://doi.org/10.5194/cp-2018-79
09 Jul 2018
 | 09 Jul 2018
Status: this preprint was under review for the journal CP but the revision was not accepted.

Instability of Northeast Siberian ice sheet during glacials

Zhongshi Zhang, Qing Yan, Elizabeth J. Farmer, Camille Li, Gilles Ramstein, Terence Hughes, Martin Jakobsson, Matt O'Regan, Ran Zhang, Ning Tan, Camille Contoux, Christophe Dumas, and Chuncheng Guo

Abstract. It has been widely believed that Northeast (NE) Siberia remained ice-free during most Pleistocene Northern Hemisphere (NH) glaciations, while ice sheets extended gradually across North America and Northwest (NW) Eurasia. However, recent fieldwork has provided robust evidence of ice sheets occupying the shallow continental shelf of the East Siberian Sea during several Pleistocene glaciations. The debate surrounding the existence and history of this enigmatic NE Siberian ice sheet highlights fundamental gaps in our current understanding of the mechanisms of glacial climate evolution. Here, we combine climate and ice sheet simulations to demonstrate how ice-vegetation-atmosphere-ocean dynamics can lead to two ice sheet configurations: the well-known Laurentide-Eurasian configuration with large ice sheets over North America and NW Eurasia, and a circum-Arctic configuration with large ice sheets over NE Siberia and the Canadian Rockies. Compared to the Laurentide-Eurasian configuration, formation of the circum-Arctic configuration can occur with an atmospheric stationary wave pattern similar to today's. Once the circum-Arctic configuration is established, it amplifies atmospheric stationary waves, leading to surface warming in the North Pacific, ablation of the NE Siberian ice sheet, and ultimately a swing to the Laurentide-Eurasian configuration. Our simulations highlight the complexity of glacial climates, and may hint towards potential mechanisms for interglacial-glacial transitions.

Publisher's note: Copernicus Publications remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims made in the text, published maps, institutional affiliations, or any other geographical representation in this preprint. The responsibility to include appropriate place names lies with the authors.
Zhongshi Zhang, Qing Yan, Elizabeth J. Farmer, Camille Li, Gilles Ramstein, Terence Hughes, Martin Jakobsson, Matt O'Regan, Ran Zhang, Ning Tan, Camille Contoux, Christophe Dumas, and Chuncheng Guo
 
Status: closed
Status: closed
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment
Printer-friendly Version - Printer-friendly version Supplement - Supplement
 
Status: closed
Status: closed
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment
Printer-friendly Version - Printer-friendly version Supplement - Supplement
Zhongshi Zhang, Qing Yan, Elizabeth J. Farmer, Camille Li, Gilles Ramstein, Terence Hughes, Martin Jakobsson, Matt O'Regan, Ran Zhang, Ning Tan, Camille Contoux, Christophe Dumas, and Chuncheng Guo
Zhongshi Zhang, Qing Yan, Elizabeth J. Farmer, Camille Li, Gilles Ramstein, Terence Hughes, Martin Jakobsson, Matt O'Regan, Ran Zhang, Ning Tan, Camille Contoux, Christophe Dumas, and Chuncheng Guo

Viewed

Total article views: 2,853 (including HTML, PDF, and XML)
HTML PDF XML Total Supplement BibTeX EndNote
2,099 677 77 2,853 186 72 80
  • HTML: 2,099
  • PDF: 677
  • XML: 77
  • Total: 2,853
  • Supplement: 186
  • BibTeX: 72
  • EndNote: 80
Views and downloads (calculated since 09 Jul 2018)
Cumulative views and downloads (calculated since 09 Jul 2018)

Viewed (geographical distribution)

Total article views: 2,679 (including HTML, PDF, and XML) Thereof 2,667 with geography defined and 12 with unknown origin.
Country # Views %
  • 1
1
 
 
 
 

Cited

Latest update: 29 May 2024
Download
Short summary
Our study challenges the widely accepted idea that the Laurentide-Eurasian ice sheets gradually extended across North America and Northwest Eurasia, and suggests the growth of the NH ice sheets is much more complicated. We find climate feedbacks regulate the distribution of the NH ice sheets, producing swings between two distinct ice sheet configurations: the Laurentide-Eurasian and a circum-Arctic configuration, where large ice sheets existed over Northeast Siberia and the Canadian Rockies.