Skip to main content
×
Home
    • Aa
    • Aa

New Quaternary sedimentary records from near the Larsen C and former Larsen B ice shelves; evidence for Holocene stability

  • Philip Curry (a1) and Carol J. Pudsey (a2)
Abstract
Abstract

Glacial and post-glacial shelf sedimentation near the Larsen C and former Larsen B ice shelves is compared to records from ice shelves farther north, which underwent mid-Holocene retreat. A core from Larsen C comprises a lower unit of deformation till, overlain by thick mud interpreted as water lain from suspension under the ice shelf. Iceberg-rafted debris occurs only in the top 50 cm, suggesting that prior to that layer's deposition, the ice shelf had not receded past the site since the last deglaciation. Subsequently the site appears to have been seasonally ice free, and the ice shelf has retreated further and is now 15 km landward of the site. A core from Larsen B also consists of a lower unit, interpreted as sub-glacial lodgement till. The overlying mud is thinner, more poorly sorted, with evidence of powerful winnowing of sediments suggesting strong currents. The absence of iceberg-rafted debris implies that this site was covered by an ice shelf continuously from the last deglaciation until its collapse in 2002. Strong currents could have facilitated basal erosion, contributing to its collapse. The Larsen C shelf is also thinning and historical records show retreat in the last hundred years. With continued rising temperatures, Larsen C may eventually retreat to a point at which it collapses.

  • View HTML
    • Send article to Kindle

      To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

      Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

      Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

      New Quaternary sedimentary records from near the Larsen C and former Larsen B ice shelves; evidence for Holocene stability
      Available formats
      ×
      Send article to Dropbox

      To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Dropbox account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

      New Quaternary sedimentary records from near the Larsen C and former Larsen B ice shelves; evidence for Holocene stability
      Available formats
      ×
      Send article to Google Drive

      To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Google Drive account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

      New Quaternary sedimentary records from near the Larsen C and former Larsen B ice shelves; evidence for Holocene stability
      Available formats
      ×
Copyright
Corresponding author
philipxcurry@yahoo.co.uk
Linked references
Hide All

This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

S. Brachfeld , E. Domack , C. Kissel , C. Laj , A. Leventer , S. Ishman , R. Gilbert , A. Camerlenghi & L.B. Eglinton 2003. Holocene history of the Larsen A ice shelf constrained by geomagnetic palaeointensity dating. Geology, 31, 749752.

A.J. Cook , A.J. Fox , D.G. Vaughan & J.G. Ferrigno 2005. Retreating glacier fronts on the Antarctic Peninsula over the past half-century. Science, 308, 541545.

E.W. Domack , D. Duran , A. Leventer , S. Ishman , S. Doane , S. McCallum , D. Amblas , J. Ring , R. Gilbert & M. Prentice 2005. Stability of the Larsen B ice shelf on the Antarctic Peninsula during the Holocene epoch. Nature, 436, 681685.

A. Elverhøi , O. Lonne & R. Seland 1983. Glacimarine sedimentation in a modern fjord environment. Polar Research, 1, 127149.

J. Evans & C.J. Pudsey 2002. Sediment facies of Antarctic Peninsula ice shelves: implications for palaeoenvironmental reconstructions of glacimarine sediments. Journal of the Geological Society, 159, 233237.

J. Evans , C.J. Pudsey , C. O'Cofaigh , P. Morris & E.W. Domack 2005. Late Quaternary glacial history, flow dynamics and sedimentation along the eastern margin of the Antarctic Peninsula Ice Sheet. Quaternary Science Reviews, 24, 741774.

M.A. Hemer & P.T. Harris 2003. Sediment core from beneath the Amery Ice Shelf, East Antarctica, suggests mid-Holocene ice-shelf retreat. Geology, 31, 127130.

A. Jenkins & C.S.M. Doake 1991. Ice-ocean interaction on Ronne Ice Shelf, Antarctica. Journal of Geophysical Research, 96, 791813.

D.R. MacAyeal , T.A. Scambos , L.C. Hulbe & M. Fahnestock 2003. Catastrophic ice shelf breakup by an ice shelf fragment capsize mechanism. Journal of Glaciology, 49, 2236.

A. Mackensen , H. Grobe , G. Kuhn & D.K. Futterer 1990. Benthic foramineral assemblages from the eastern Weddell Sea between 68 and 73°S: distribution, ecology and fossilisation potential. Marine Micropaleontology, 16, 143.

E.M. Morris & D.G. Vaughan 2003. Spatial and temporal variation of surface temperature on the Antarctic Peninsula and the limit of viability of ice shelves. Antarctic Research Series, 79, 6168.

J.W. Murray & C.J. Pudsey 2005. Living (stained) and dead foraminifera from the newly ice-free Larsen Ice Shelf, Weddell Sea, Antarctica: ecology and taphonomy. Marine Micropaleontology, 53, 6781.

C. O'Cofaigh , J.A. Dowdeswell & H. Grobe 2001. Holocene glacimarine sedimentation, inner Scoresby Sund, East Greenland: the influence of fast-flowing ice-sheet outlet glaciers. Marine Geology, 175, 103129.

R.D. Powell 1984. Glacimarine processes and inductive lithofacies modelling of ice shelf and tidewater glacier sediments based on Quaternary examples. Marine Geology, 57, 152.

R.D. Powell & B.F. Molnia 1989. Glacimarine sedimentary processes, facies and morphology of the south–southeast Alaska shelf and fjords. Marine Geology, 85, 359390.

C.J. Pudsey & J. Evans 2001. First survey of Antarctic sub-ice shelf sediments reveals mid-Holocene ice shelf retreat. Geology, 29, 787790.

E. Scambos , C. Hulbe & M. Fahnestock 2003. Climate induced ice shelf disintegration in the Antarctic Peninsula. Antarctic Research Series, 79, 7992.

A. Shepherd , D. Wingham , T. Payne & P. Skvarca 2003. Larsen Ice Shelf has progressively thinned. Science, 302, 856859.

P. Skvarca & H. De Angelis 2003. Impact assessment of regional climatic warming on glaciers and ice shelves of the north eastern Antarctic Peninsula. Antarctic Research Series, 79, 6978.

P. Skvarca , W. Rack , H. Rott & T. Ibarzabal y Donangelo 1999. Climatic trend and the retreat and disintegration of ice shelves on the Antarctic Peninsula: an overview. Polar Research, 18, 151157.

D.G. Vaughan & C.S.M. Doake 1996. Recent atmospheric warming and retreat of ice shelves on the Antarctic Peninsula. Nature, 379, 328331.

D.G. Vaughan , G.J. Marshall , W.M. Connolley , J.C. King & R. Mulvaney 2001. Devil in the detail. Science, 293, 17771779.

I.A. Zotikov , V.S. Zagorodnov & J.V. Raikovsky 1980. Core drilling through the Ross Ice Shelf (Antarctica) confirmed basal freezing. Science, 207, 14631465.

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Antarctic Science
  • ISSN: 0954-1020
  • EISSN: 1365-2079
  • URL: /core/journals/antarctic-science
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Keywords:

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 5
Total number of PDF views: 181 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 42 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 26th March 2017. This data will be updated every 24 hours.