Skip to main content Accessibility help

Ice record of a 13th century explosive volcanic eruption in northern Victoria Land, East Antarctica

  • Biancamaria Narcisi (a1), Marco Proposito (a1) (a2) and Massimo Frezzotti (a1)


A volcanic event, represented by both coarse ash and a prominent sulphate peak, has been detected at a depth of 85.82 m in a 90 m ice core drilled at Talos Dome, northern Victoria Land. Accurate dating of the core, based on counting annual sulphate and nitrate fluctuations and on comparison with records of major known volcanic eruptions, indicates that the event occurred in 1254 ± 2 AD. The source volcano is most likely to be located within the Ross Sea region. In particular, the glass shards have a trachytic composition similar to rocks from The Pleiades and Mount Rittmann (Melbourne volcanic province), about 200 km from Talos Dome. Sulphate concentration is comparable with that of violent extra-Antarctic explosive events recorded in the same core, but atmospheric perturbation was short-lived and localized, suggesting a negligible impact on regional climate. It is suggested that this eruption may represent the most important volcanic explosion in the Melbourne province during the last eight centuries; thus this event may also represent a valuable chrono-stratigraphical marker on the East Antarctic plateau and in adjoining areas.


Corresponding author

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? *



Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed