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Location map of seven sediment cores from the North Atlantic and western Mediterranean Sea

Location map of seven sediment cores from the North Atlantic and western Mediterranean Sea

SST Variations

Holocene SST reconstructions are more spatially complete sopra the North Atlantic compared to other oceans, although still primarily limited esatto high sediment-accumulation-rate, near-shore basins. Pioneering research seeking to identify a long-term tendenza sopra upper ocean temperatures focused on reconstructing SSTs for 9 and 6 ka, using planktonic foraminiferal assemblages ( Ruddiman and Mix, 1993 ). Calibration studies con the 1950s and 1960s had demonstrated that insecable groupings of planktonic Foraminifera are highly correlated sicuro SST, con addition sicuro salinity and scodella-column nutrients ( Morey et al., 2005 ). Ruddiman and Mix (1993) found mai discernible pattern of past SST variability per the North Atlantic and questioned both the methodology used for quantitative reconstructions and the age control associated with variable sediment-accumulation rates.

Per subsequent study of reconstructed summer SST for 6 ka, using per variety of methods (diatom assemblages, marine mollusks, and dinoflagellate cysts), found that warmer conditions (+ 1–4 °C incomplete puro today) inundated the Norwegian Sea, Hudson Bay, Baffin Bay, Nares Strait, Davis Strait, Labrador Sea, and Greenland Sea during per time when summertime insolation was approximately 7% higher than today ( Kerwin et al. (1999) , and references therein). This andamento of warmer-than-present SSTs during the early puro middle Holocene is perhaps best illustrated sopra core MD952011 ( Calvo et al nome utente apex., 2002 ) from the Norwegian Sea where maximum SST warming (+ 2 ° C divisee preciso today) accompanied the Holocene Thermal Maximum between 8.6 and 5.5 ka, followed by verso gradual cooling to today’s temperatures.

A major breakthrough in Holocene paleoceanography was made with the development of alkenone paleothermometry in the 1980s ( Brassell et al., 1986 ). Alkenones are long-chained ketones synthesized as membrane lipids by certain kinds of algae that are well preserved in marine sediments (see Alkenone Paleothermometry Based on the Haptophyte Algae ). The alkenone unsaturation index U K 37 is considered to be a robust proxy for SST because the algal organisms synthesizing alkenones must live in the photic zone, where their growth temperature is closely tied to SST. By measuring the alkenone unsaturation ratio preserved in a wide array of marine-sediment cores, a detailed picture of past surface ocean conditions ).

Alkenone-based SST reconstructions from seven high-accumulation sediment cores con the North Atlantic (north of 35 ° N) and the western Mediterranean Sea show verso cooling trend of 0.15–0.27 ° C per thousand years over the past 10 ka ( ). These records are significant durante that they span verso large area of the NE North Atlantic from 36° onesto 74 ° N latitude ( Figure 6 ). This surface ocean cooling tendenza is also apparent per three non-alkenone reconstructions from the Labrador Sea and Iceland Basin ( Figure 7 ). Isotopic analyses (? 18 O) on two foraminiferal species, mediante combination with dinocyst assemblage scadenza, suggest that SSTs have been cooling steadily since the early Holocene ( Solignac et al., 2004 ). These ? 18 O records each show more high-frequency variability than the alkenone-derived records, likely because of the sensitivity of isotopes puro changes mediante sea-surface salinity as well as surface temperature ( Solignac et al., 2004 ).

PALEOCEANOGRAPHY, RECORDS | Postglacial North Atlantic

From ) Apparent long-term cooling of the sea surface durante the northeast Atlantic and Mediterranean during the Holocene. Quaternary Science Reviews 21: 455–583.

From Solignac S, de Vernal A, and Hillaire-) Holocene sea-surface conditions durante the North Atlantic – contrasted trends and regimes mediante the western and eastern sectors (Labrador Sea vs. Iceland Basin). Quaternary Science Reviews 23: 319–334.