Skip to main content
×
×
Home

Features of the glacial history of the Transantarctic Mountains inferred from cosmogenic 26Al, 10Be and 21Ne concentrations in bedrock surfaces

  • Greg Balco (a1), John O.H. Stone (a2), Maciej G. Sliwinski (a2) (a3) and Claire Todd (a4)
Abstract

This paper describes measurements of concentrations of cosmogenic 26Al, 10Be and 21Ne in quartz from bedrock surfaces in the Transantarctic Mountains where stratigraphic and geomorphic evidence shows that the surfaces were covered by ice in the past, but were not glacially eroded during periods of ice cover. It then explores to what extent this information can be used to learn about past ice sheet change. First, cosmogenic nuclide concentrations in sandstone bedrock surfaces at two sites in the McMurdo Dry Valleys near 77°S are consistent with an equilibrium between nuclide production and loss by surface erosion and radioactive decay. They are most easily explained by a scenario in which: i) sites more than c. 100 m above the present ice surface were almost never ice-covered and eroded steadily at 0.5–1.5 m Ma-1, and ii) sites near the present ice margin experienced similar erosion rates when ice-free, but have been covered by cold-based, non-erosive glacier ice as much as half of the time during the past several million years. Nuclide concentrations in granite bedrock at a site in the Quartz Hills near 85°S, on the other hand, have not reached production-erosion equilibrium, thus retaining evidence of the time they were first exposed to the cosmic ray flux. Nuclide concentrations at these sites are most easily explained by 4–6 Ma exposure, extremely low erosion rates of 5–10 cm Ma-1 during periods of exposure, and only very short periods of cold-based, non-erosive ice cover.

  • View HTML
    • Send article to Kindle

      To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@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. 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.

      Features of the glacial history of the Transantarctic Mountains inferred from cosmogenic 26Al, 10Be and 21Ne concentrations in bedrock surfaces
      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 <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

      Features of the glacial history of the Transantarctic Mountains inferred from cosmogenic 26Al, 10Be and 21Ne concentrations in bedrock surfaces
      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 <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

      Features of the glacial history of the Transantarctic Mountains inferred from cosmogenic 26Al, 10Be and 21Ne concentrations in bedrock surfaces
      Available formats
      ×
Copyright
This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution licence (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/), which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Corresponding author
balcs@bgc.org
References
Hide All
Balco, G., Shuster, D.L., Blard, P.-H., Zimmermann, L. & Stone, J.O.H. 2011. Cosmogenic Ne-21 production systematics in quartz inferred from a 25-meter sandstone core. Mineralogical Magazine, 75, 473.
Balco, G., Briner, J., Finkel, R.C., Rayburn, J.A., Ridge, J.C. & Schaefer, J.M. 2009. Regional beryllium-10 production rate calibration for late-glacial northeastern North America. Quaternary Geochronology, 4, 93107.
Balco, G. & Shuster, D.L. 2009a. Production rate of cosmogenic 21Ne in quartz estimated from 10Be, 26Al, and 21Ne concentrations in slowly eroding Antarctic bedrock surfaces. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 281, 4858.
Balco, G. & Shuster, D. 2009b. 26Al–10Be–21Ne burial dating. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 286, 570575.
Balco, G., Stone, J.O., Lifton, N.A. & Dunai, T.J. 2008. A complete and easily accessible means of calculating surface exposure ages or erosion rates from 10Be and 26Al measurements. Quaternary Geochronology, 3, 174195.
Bierman, P., Marsella, K., Patterson, C., Davis, P. & Caffee, M. 1999. Mid-Pleistocene cosmogenic minimum-age limits for pre-Wisconsinan glacial surfaces in southwestern Minnesota and southern Baffin Island: a multiple nuclide approach. Geomorphology, 27, 2539.
Bromley, G.R.M., Hall, B.L., Stone, J.O., Conway, H. & Todd, C.E. 2010. Late Cenozoic deposits at Reedy Glacier, Transantarctic Mountains: implications for former thickness of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet. Quaternary Science Reviews, 29, 384398.
Brook, E.J. & Kurz, M.D. 1993. Surface-exposure chronology using in situ cosmogenic 3He in Antarctic quartz sandstone boulders. Quaternary Research, 39, 110.
Chmeleff, J., von Blanckenburg, F., Kossert, K. & Jakob, D. 2009. Determination of the 10Be half-life by multicollector ICP-MS and liquid scintillation counting. Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research - Beam Interactions with Materials and Atoms, 268B, 192199.
Fernandez-Mosquera, D., Hahm, D. & Marti, K. 2010. Calculated rates of cosmic ray muon-produced Ne in subsurface quartz. Geophysical Research Letters, 37, 10.1029/2010GL044106.
Granger, D.E. 2006. A review of burial dating methods using 26Al and 10Be. Geological Society of America Special Paper, 415, 116.
Heisinger, B., Lal, D., Jull, A.J.T., Kubik, P., Ivy-Ochs, S., Knie, K. & Nolte, E. 2002a. Production of selected cosmogenic radionuclides by muons: 2. Capture of negative muons. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 200, 357369.
Heisinger, B., Lal, D., Jull, A.J.T., Kubik, P., Ivy-Ochs, S., Neumaier, S., Knie, K., Lazarev, V. & Nolte, E. 2002b. Production of selected cosmogenic radionuclides by muons: 1. Fast muons. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 200, 345355.
Higgins, S.H., Hendy, C.H. & Denton, G.H. 2000. Geochronology of Bonney Drift, Taylor Valley, Antarctica: evidence for interglacial expansions of Taylor Glacier. Geografiska Annaler - Physical Geography, 82A, 391409.
Klein, J., Giegengack, R., Middleton, R., Sharma, P., Underwood, J.R. & Weeks, R.A. 1986. Revealing histories of exposures using in situ produced 26Al and 10Be in Libyan desert glass. Radiocarbon, 28, 547555.
Korschinek, G., & 13 others. 2010. A new value for the half-life of Be-10 by heavy-ion recoil detection and liquid scintillation counting. Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research B - Beam Interactions with Materials and Atoms, 268, 10.1016/j.nimb.2009.09.020.
Lal, D. 1991. Cosmic ray labeling of erosion surfaces: in situ nuclide production rates and erosion models. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 104, 424439.
Liu, H., Jezek, K., Li, B. & Zhao, Z. 2001. Radarsat Antarctic mapping project digital elevation model version 2. Technical Report. Boulder, CO: National Snow and Ice Data Center.
Mercer, J.H. 1968. Glacial geology of the Reedy Glacier area, Antarctica. Geological Society of America Bulletin, 79, 471486.
Middleton, J.L., Ackert, R.P. & Mukhopadhyay, S. 2012. Pothole and channel system formation in the McMurdo Dry Valleys of Antarctica: new insights from cosmogenic nuclides. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 355–356, 341350.
Mukhopadhyay, S., Ackert, R.D., Pope, A.E., Pollard, D. & DeConto, R.M. 2012. Miocene to recent ice elevation variations from the interior of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet: constraints from geologic observations, cosmogenic nuclides and ice sheet modeling. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 337–338, 243251.
Niedermann, S., Graf, T. & Marti, K. 1993. Mass spectrometric identification of cosmic-ray-produced neon in terrestrial rocks with multiple neon components. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 118, 6573.
Nishiizumi, K. 2004. Preparation of 26Al AMS standards. Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research - Beam Interactions with Materials and Atoms, 223–224B, 388392.
Nishiizumi, K., Lal, D., Klein, J., Middleton, R. & Arnold, J.R. 1986. Production of 10Be and 26Al by cosmic rays in terrestrial quartz in situ and implications for erosion rates. Nature, 319, 134136.
Stone, J. 2001. Extraction of Al and Be from quartz for isotopic analysis. Seattle, WA: UW Cosmogenic Nuclide Lab Methods and Procedures, Available at: http://depts.washington.edu/cosmolab/chem/Al-26_Be-10.pdf.
Sugden, D. & Denton, G. 2004. Cenozoic landscape evolution of the Convoy Range to Mackay Glacier area, Transantarctic Mountains: onshore to offshore synthesis. Geological Society of America Bulletin, 116, 840857.
Sugden, D.E., Balco, G., Cowdery, S.G., Stone, J.O. & Sass, L.C. 2005. Selective glacial erosion and weathering zones in the coastal mountains of Marie Byrd Land, Antarctica. Geomorphology, 67, 317334.
Sugden, D.E., Summerfield, M.A., Denton, G.H., Wilch, T.I., McIntosh, W.C., Marchant, D.R. & Rutford, R.H. 1999. Landscape development in the Royal Society Range, southern Victoria Land, Antarctica: stability since the mid-Miocene. Geomorphology, 28, 181200.
Todd, C., Stone, J., Conway, H., Hall, B. & Bromley, G. 2010. Late Quaternary evolution of Reedy Glacier, Antarctica. Quaternary Science Reviews, 29, 13281341.
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

Type Description Title
EXCEL
Supplementary materials

Balco et al. supllementary material
Supplementary data

 Excel (75 KB)
75 KB

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 5
Total number of PDF views: 112 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 165 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 20th July 2018. This data will be updated every 24 hours.