Ice stratigraphy at the Pâkitsoq ice margin, West Greenland, derived from gas records

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Abstract:

Horizontal ice-core sites, where ancient ice is exposed at the glacier surface, offer unique opportunities for paleo-studies of trace components requiring large sample volumes. Following previous work at the Pâkitsoq ice margin in West Greenland, we use a combination of geochemical parameters measured in the ice matrix (18Oice) and air occlusions (18Oatm, 15N of N2 and methane concentration) to date ice layers from specific climatic intervals. The data presented here expand our understanding of the stratigraphy and three-dimensional structure of ice layers outcropping at Pâkitsoq. Sections containing ice from every distinct climatic interval during Termination I, including Last Glacial Maximum, Bølling/Allerød, Younger Dryas and the early Holocene, are identified. In the early Holocene, we find evidence for climatic fluctuations similar to signals found in deep ice cores from Greenland. A second glacial–interglacial transition exposed at the extreme margin of the ice is identified as another outcrop of Termination I (rather than the onset of the Eemian interglacial as postulated in earlier work). Consequently, the main structural feature at Pâkitsoq is a large-scale anticline with accordion-type folding in both exposed sequences of the glacial–Holocene transition, leading to multiple layer duplications and age reversals.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3189/002214309788816704

Publication date: June 1, 2009

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  • The Journal of Glaciology is published six times per year. It accepts submissions from any discipline related to the study of snow and ice. All articles are peer reviewed. The Journal is included in the ISI Science Citation Index.
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