Synchronous centennial abrupt events in the ocean and atmosphere during the last deglaciation

Tianyu Chen, Laura F. Robinson, Andrea Burke, John Southon, Peter Spooner, Paul J. Morris, Hong Chin Ng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

101 Citations (Scopus)
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Antarctic ice-core data reveal that the atmosphere experienced abrupt centennial increases in CO2 concentration during the last deglaciation (~18-11 thousand years, ka). Establishing the role of ocean circulation in these changes requires high-resolution, accurately-dated marine records. Here we report radiocarbon data from uranium-thorium dated deep-sea corals in the Equatorial Atlantic and Drake Passage over the last 25 ka. Two major deglacial radiocarbon increases occurred in phase with centennial atmospheric CO2 rises at 14.8 ka and 11.7 ka. We interpret these radiocarbon-enriched signals to represent two short-lived (<500 years) ‘overshoot’ events with Atlantic meridional overturning stronger than modern. These results provide compelling evidence for a close coupling of ocean circulation and centennial climate events during the last deglaciation
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1537-1541
Number of pages5
Issue number6255
Publication statusPublished - 25 Sept 2015


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