Glacial sediment-landform associations and palaeoclimate during the last glaciation, Strait of Magellan, Chile

Douglas Iain Benn, CM Clapperton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Glacial sediments and landforms preserved beside the Strait of Magellan record repeated advances of an outlet of the Patagonian Icefield during and following the last glacial maximum (LGM; similar to 25,000-14,000 C-14 yr B.P,). Ice-marginal landform assemblages consist of thrust moraine complexes, kame and kettle topography, and lateral meltwater channels, very similar to those found at the margins of modern subpolar glaciers. Taken together with other forms of paleoenvironmental evidence, the landform assemblages show that, during the LGM and late-glacial time, permafrost occurred near sea lever in southernmost South America. This finding implies that mean annual temperatures were similar to 7-8 degrees C lower than at present, somewhat lower than those reconstructed by current glacier-climatic models. Comparison,vith precipitation-temperature relationships for modern glaciers suggests, in addition, that precipitation levels were lower than today. Reduced glacial-age precipitation may have resulted from a precipitation shadow induced by the Patagonian Icefield, an equatorward migration of the average position of westerly cyclonic storm tracks in the southern midlatitudes, or both these factors. (C) 2000 University of Washington.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13-23
Number of pages11
JournalQuaternary Research
Volume54
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2000

Keywords

  • South America
  • Chile
  • paleoclimate
  • glacier reconstruction
  • last glacial maximum
  • LATE PLEISTOCENE
  • ARCTIC CANADA
  • ICE SHELF
  • PATAGONIA
  • CLIMATE
  • POLLEN
  • BEETLE
  • DEFORMATION
  • VEGETATION
  • EXAMPLES

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