Late Quaternary chronology of Arctic Ocean sediments

Project leader

Funding source

Swedish Research Council - Vetenskapsrådet (VR)

Project Details

Start date: 01/01/2017
End date: 31/12/2020
Funding: 3457000 SEK


This study will advance our ability to determine the age of Arctic Ocean
sediments, an effort needed to integrate Arctic paleoceanography with
other global paleoclimate data. The Arctic is a critical and sensitive
component of the global climate system. Many climate models predict that
the Arctic may be ice free in summers by the end of this century. At
the other extreme, geological evidence suggests that immense
land-anchored ice shelves covered the Arctic at the peak of some past
glacial periods. These observations highlight an immense scale of
variability in the Arctic system, yet the regularity of these swings on
geological time scales is highly uncertain. This is because we struggle
to date Arctic marine sediments needed to create time series from
increasingly sophisticated environmental proxies. Using an extensive
collection of Arctic marine sediment cores stored at Stockholm
University, the project will target sediments deposited during the last
250,000 years. It will apply absolute (Radiocarbon and Optically
Stimulated Luminescence) and relative (Amino Acid Racemization) dating
methods, and integrate these with more traditional studies on bio-,
litho- and magneto-stratigraphy. The results will improve our ability to
reconstruct changes in the Arctic marine cryosphere during the recent
geologic past. Ultimately this can help determine our position in the
natural cycle of Earth’s climatic swings and evaluate the consequences
and causes of modern changes.

Last updated on 2017-06-10 at 07:31