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Abrupt climate change: ice sheets and oceans in action

Dokken, T., Andrews, J.T., Hemming, S., Stokes, C.R. and Jansen, E. (2003) Abrupt climate change: ice sheets and oceans in action. EOS, TRANSACTIONS AMERICAN GEOPHYSICAL UNION, 84 (20). 189, 193.

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1029/2003EO200006


Large temperature variations on land, in the air, and at the ocean surface, and highly variable flux of ice-rafted debris (IRD) delivered to the North Atlantic Ocean show that rapid climate fluctuations took place during the last glacial period. These quasi-periodic, high-amplitude climate variations followed a sequence of events recognized as a rapid warming, followed by a phase of gradual cooling, and terminating with more rapid cooling and increased flux of IRD to the north Atlantic Ocean. Each cycle lasted ˜1500 years, and was followed by an almost identical sequence. These cycles are referred to as Dansgaard/Oechger cycles (D/O cycles), and approximately every fourth cycle culminated in a more pronounced cooling with a massive discharge of IRD into the north Atlantic Ocean over an interval of ˜500 years. These massive discharges of IRD are known as Heinrich layers. “Heinrich events” are thus characterized as a rapid transfer of IRD from a “source,” the bed of the Laurentide Ice Sheet (LIS), to a “sink,” the North Atlantic.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Science > School of Archaeology, Geography and Environmental Science
ID Code:3479
Uncontrolled Keywords:9950 Meetings; 3022 Marine Geology and Geophysics: Marine sediments—processes and transport; 4540 Oceanography: Physical: Ice mechanics and air/sea/ice exchange processes
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