Millennial-scale sea ice variability in the southern Indian Ocean during the last glacial
Tuesday, 16 December 2014
The Southern Ocean has played an important role in the evolution of the global climate system. Sea ice coverage on sea surface strongly affects the climate of the Southern Hemisphere through its impacts on the energy and gas budget, on the atmospheric circulation, on the hydrological cycle, and on the biological productivity. In this study, we have conducted fundamental analyses of ice-rafted debris (IRD) and diatom assemblage to reveal a rapid change of sea ice distribution in the glacial southern Indian Ocean. Piston cores COR-1bPC and DCR-1PC were collected from the Conrad Rise and Del Caño Rise, Indian sector of the Southern Ocean. Age models of the cores were established by radiocarbon dating and oxygen isotope stratigraphy of planktic and benthic foraminifers. Records of IRD concentration suggest millennial-scale pulses of IRD delivery during the last glacial period. The depositions of rock-fragment IRD excluding volcanic glass and pumice were associated with increasing of sea-ice diatoms, suggesting that the millennial-scale events of cooling and sea-ice expansion were occurred in the southern Indian Ocean during the last glacial period. Provenance study of IRD grains suggest that the source of IRD in the southern Indian Ocean was mainly volcanic arc in the South Atlantic, based on chemical compositions of rock-fragment IRD grains. Thus prominent IRD layers in the glacial Southern Ocean suggest episodes of sea ice expansion and cooling in the Indian sectors of the Southern Ocean.