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GEOREF RECORD

Middle to late Pleistocene stability of the central East Antarctic ice sheet at the head of Law Glacier

M. R. Kaplan, K. J. Licht, G. Winckler, J. M. Schaefer, N. Bader, C. Mathieson, M. Roberts, C. M. Kassab, R. Schwartz and Joseph A. Graly
Middle to late Pleistocene stability of the central East Antarctic ice sheet at the head of Law Glacier
Geology (Boulder) (November 2017) 45 (11): 963-966

Abstract

Past behavior of outlet glaciers draining the East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS) remains unresolved prior to Marine Isotope Stage 2 (MIS2). Study of blue ice moraines provides a relatively untapped approach to understand former EAIS activity. We focus on a blue ice moraine near Mount Achernar in the central Transantarctic Mountains, at the edge of the polar plateau. The well-preserved moraine consists of quasi-continuous or hummocky sediment ridges that form on top of upward-flowing, sublimating ice along the margin of Law Glacier. (super 10) Be, (super 26) Al, and (super 3) He cosmogenic nuclide ages on boulders from the ridges are coherent and in general are progressively older with distance from the relatively clean ice of the Law Glacier margin. Moraines closest to the Law Glacier margin postdate MIS2; farther away, they date to the last glacial cycle, and with more distance they are hundreds of thousands of years old. We conclude that cosmogenic dating of some blue ice moraines can provide age limits for changes at the heads of outlet glaciers that drain the central East Antarctic Ice Sheet, including prior to MIS2. Furthermore, the geomorphological, cosmogenic nuclide, and sedimentological evidence imply that the East Antarctic polar plateau adjacent to the central Transantarctic Mountains has been relatively stable for at least 200 k.y.


ISSN: 0091-7613
EISSN: 1943-2682
Coden: GLGYBA
Serial Title: Geology (Boulder)
Serial Volume: 45
Serial Issue: 11
Title: Middle to late Pleistocene stability of the central East Antarctic ice sheet at the head of Law Glacier
Affiliation: Columbia University, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Palisades, NY, United States
Pages: 963-966
Published: 201711
Text Language: English
Publisher: Geological Society of America (GSA), Boulder, CO, United States
References: 25
Accession Number: 2018-024411
Categories: Quaternary geologyGeochronology
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Annotation: GSA Data Repository item 2017324
Illustration Description: illus. incl. sketch map
S84°12'00" - S84°12'00", E160°55'60" - E160°55'60"
Secondary Affiliation: Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, USA, United States
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2018, American Geosciences Institute.
Update Code: 201806
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