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B. H. Jacobsen

Deciphering the Glacial-Interglacial Landscape History in Greenland Based on Markov Chain Monte Carlo Inversion of Existing 10Be-26Al Data

Research output: Contribution to conferencePosterResearch

Surface exposure dating with cosmogenic nuclides is a dating method under continuous development. It is particularly useful for dating ice-sheet fluctuations in glacial environments, which is essential to increase our understanding of past climate fluctuations and glacial dynamics. Constraining the landscape history in previously glaciated terrains may be difficult, however, due to unknown erosion rates and the presence of inherited nuclides. The potential use of cosmogenic nuclides in landscapes with a complex history of exposure and erosion is therefore often quite limited. In this study, we investigate the landscape history in eastern and western Greenland by applying a novel Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) inversion approach to the existing 10Be-26Al data from these regions. The new MCMC approach allows us to constrain the most likely landscape history based on comparisons between simulated and measured cosmogenic nuclide concentrations. It is a fundamental assumption of the model approach that the exposure history at the site/location can
be divided into two distinct regimes: i) interglacial periods characterized by zero shielding due to overlying ice and a uniform interglacial erosion rate, and ii) glacial periods characterized by 100 % shielding and a uniform glacial erosion rate. We incorporate the exposure/burial history in the model framework by applying a threshold value to the global marine benthic d18O record and include the threshold value as a free model parameter, hereby taking into account global changes in climate. The other free parameters include the glacial and interglacial erosion rates as well as
the timing of the Holocene deglaciation. The model essentially simulates numerous different landscape scenarios based on these four parameters and zooms in on the most plausible combination of model parameters.
Here, we apply the MCMC-model to the concentrations of 10Be and 26Al measured in three previous studies of glacial fluctuations in Greenland (Upernavik, Sisimiut, and Jameson Land) and delineate the most likely exposure/burial history in these areas over the last 106 years. The results allow for comparison of glacial and interglacial erosion rates and exposure/burial history in similar landscape settings across different regions of Greenland.
Original languageEnglish
Publication year2015
Publication statusPublished - 2015
EventAGU Fall Meeting 2015 - San Francisco, United States
Duration: 14 Dec 201518 Dec 2015


ConferenceAGU Fall Meeting 2015
CountryUnited States
CitySan Francisco

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