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Delayed maximum and recession of an East Antarctic outlet glacier

Courtney King, Brenda Hall, Trevor Hillebrand and John Stone
Delayed maximum and recession of an East Antarctic outlet glacier
Geology (Boulder) (April 2020) 48 (6): 630-634


During the last glaciation, East Antarctic outlet glaciers contributed to a grounded ice sheet in the Ross Embayment. The timing of maximum ice extent, as well as of subsequent deglaciation of these outlets, has implications for the behavior of the Antarctic Ice Sheet (AIS) and its impact on global sea level. We present 45 radiocarbon ages of lacustrine cyanobacteria from the Lake Wellman region alongside Hatherton Glacier, which are the first terrestrial data to both record advance of an Antarctic glacier to its maximum position as well as document a high-resolution chronology of subsequent retreat. Seventeen new exposure ages are widely scattered, but the youngest four are in broad agreement with the radiocarbon data. Hatherton Glacier slowly thickened from 13,000 to 9500 yr B.P. and then thinned steadily until at least ca. 2800 yr B.P. Our work affords evidence of both a delayed maximum and recession of an East Antarctic outlet glacier compared to the global Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) and supports growing evidence of a time-transgressive local LGM within the Ross Sea sector of the ice sheet. Both observations are consistent with the idea that the timing of outlet glacier expansion and timing of recession are controlled by the balance between dynamic thinning from ocean forcing and increased accumulation due to atmospheric warming.

ISSN: 0091-7613
EISSN: 1943-2682
Serial Title: Geology (Boulder)
Serial Volume: 48
Serial Issue: 6
Title: Delayed maximum and recession of an East Antarctic outlet glacier
Affiliation: University of Maine, School of Earth and Climate Sciences and Climate Change Institute, Orono, ME, United States
Pages: 630-634
Published: 20200413
Text Language: English
Publisher: Geological Society of America (GSA), Boulder, CO, United States
References: 21
Accession Number: 2020-039368
Categories: Quaternary geologyGeochronology
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Annotation: GSA Data Repository item 2020185
Illustration Description: illus. incl. geol. sketch map
S90°00'00" - S65°00'00", W40°00'00" - E171°00'00"
Secondary Affiliation: University of Washington, USA, United States
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2020, American Geosciences Institute. Reference includes data from GeoScienceWorld, Alexandria, VA, United States. Reference includes data supplied by the Geological Society of America, Boulder, CO, United States
Update Code: 202025
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