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A High-Resolution Absolute-Dated Late Pleistocene Monsoon Record from Hulu Cave, China

Fig.2 partial, 10-13KYrBP.  d18O of Hulu stalagmites.   
Click for full figure. A High-Resolution Absolute-Dated Late Pleistocene Monsoon Record from Hulu Cave, China
Vol. 294, pp. 2345, 14 December 2001

Y. J. Wang,1,3 H. Cheng,2 R. L. Edwards,2* Z.S. An,3 J. Y. Wu,4 C.-C. Shen,5 J. A. Dorale6
1College of Geography Science, Nanjing Normal University, Nanjing 210097, China.
2Department of Geology and Geophysics, University of Minnesota, MN 55455, USA.
3State Key Laboratory of Loess and Quaternary Geology, Institute of Earth Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xían 710054, China.
4State Key Laboratory for Mineral Deposits Research, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210008, China.
5Department of Earth Sciences, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan, China.
6Department of Geological Sciences, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO, USA.
*Corresponding author

Figure 2. (Click image for full figure).
Fig. 2. d18O of Hulu stalagmites (purple, black, and blue) and Greenland Ice (dark blue shows 20-year averages; gray shows 3-year averages) versus time. Yellow bands indicate the timing and duration of the YD and the transition into the BA (t-BA); the BA is the interval between the yellow bands. 230Th ages and errors are color-coded by stalagmite. The chronology of YT and most of the chronology of H82 are fixed by annual banding. As YT and H82 are more precisely and continuously dated than PD, we adjusted the time scale of PD between 17 and 14 ka to match the major d18O features. The slight adjustment is well within the errors of the PD time scale. The thin d18O trace in this interval depicts the PD record based solely on its own 230Th dates. The average number of years per d18O analysis is 60 for PD, 9 for YT, and 7 for H82.

Oxygen isotope records of five stalagmites from Hulu Cave near Nanjing bear a remarkable resemblance to oxygen isotope records from Greenland ice cores, suggesting that East Asian Monsoon intensity changed in concert with Greenland temperature between 11,000 and 75,000 years before the present (yr. B.P.). Between 11,000 and 30,000 yr. B.P., the timing of changes in the monsoon, as established with 230Th dates, generally agrees with the timing of temperature changes from the Greenland Ice Sheet Project Two (GISP2) core, which supports GISP2's chronology in this interval. Our record links North Atlantic climate with the meridional transport of heat and moisture from the warmest part of the ocean where the summer East Asian Monsoon originates.
Fig. 1. d18O of Hulu Cave stalagmites ( purple, green, and red) and Greenland Ice (dark blue) and insolation at 33°N averaged over the months of June, July, and August (black) versus time. 230Th ages and errors are color-coded by stalagmite. Numbers indicate GISs and correlated events at Hulu Cave. The YD and Heinrich events are depicted with vertical bars. The brown and blue bars indicate two possible correlations to H5. The average number of years per d18O analysis is 130 for MSD and 140 for MSL. The d18O scales are reversed for Hulu (increasing down) as compared with Greenland (increasing up).
To read or view the full study, please visit the Science website.
It was published in Science, Vol. 294, pp. 2345, 14 December 2001

Download the Data from the WDC Paleo archive.

The Hulu Cave stalagmite record shows the broad geographic impact of the abrupt climate changes during the last glacial period. This record reveals climatic impacts in China synchronous with the Heinrich events from the North Atlantic Ocean, as seen in ice cores from Greenland (Figure 1). It also reveals the impacts of the Younger Dryas period, again compared with the GISP2 core (Figure 2). The precise dating of the Hulu Cave stalagmites may help to more precisely date the Younger Dryas event.

The Greenland Ice Sheet Project Two (GISP2) core data is also available on the WDC Paleo website.

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10 May 2004