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Regional climate signal vs. local noise: a two-dimensional view of water isotopes in Antarctic firn at Kohnen Station, Dronning Maud Land

  • In low-accumulation regions, the reliability of delta O-18-derived temperature signals from ice cores within the Holocene is unclear, primarily due to the small climate changes relative to the intrinsic noise of the isotopic signal. In order to learn about the representativity of single ice cores and to optimise future ice-core-based climate reconstructions, we studied the stable-water isotope composition of firn at Kohnen Station, Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica. Analysing delta O-18 in two 50m long snow trenches allowed us to create an unprecedented, two-dimensional image characterising the isotopic variations from the centimetre to the 100-metre scale. Our results show seasonal layering of the isotopic composition but also high horizontal isotopic variability caused by local stratigraphic noise. Based on the horizontal and vertical structure of the isotopic variations, we derive a statistical noise model which successfully explains the trench data. The model further allows one to determine an upper bound for the reliability ofIn low-accumulation regions, the reliability of delta O-18-derived temperature signals from ice cores within the Holocene is unclear, primarily due to the small climate changes relative to the intrinsic noise of the isotopic signal. In order to learn about the representativity of single ice cores and to optimise future ice-core-based climate reconstructions, we studied the stable-water isotope composition of firn at Kohnen Station, Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica. Analysing delta O-18 in two 50m long snow trenches allowed us to create an unprecedented, two-dimensional image characterising the isotopic variations from the centimetre to the 100-metre scale. Our results show seasonal layering of the isotopic composition but also high horizontal isotopic variability caused by local stratigraphic noise. Based on the horizontal and vertical structure of the isotopic variations, we derive a statistical noise model which successfully explains the trench data. The model further allows one to determine an upper bound for the reliability of climate reconstructions conducted in our study region at seasonal to annual resolution, depending on the number and the spacing of the cores taken.show moreshow less

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Metadaten
Author:Thomas Münch, Sepp Kipfstuhl, Johannes Freitag, Hanno Meyer, Thomas LaeppleORCiDGND
DOI:https://doi.org/10.5194/cp-12-1565-2016
ISSN:1814-9324
ISSN:1814-9332
Parent Title (English):Climate of the past : an interactive open access journal of the European Geosciences Union
Publisher:Copernicus
Place of publication:Göttingen
Document Type:Article
Language:English
Year of first Publication:2016
Year of Completion:2016
Release Date:2020/03/22
Volume:12
Pagenumber:17
First Page:1565
Last Page:1581
Funder:Initiative and Networking Fund of the Helmholtz Association [VG-NH900]
Organizational units:Mathematisch-Naturwissenschaftliche Fakultät / Institut für Physik und Astronomie
Peer Review:Referiert