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Climate of the Past An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/cp-2019-66
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/cp-2019-66
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 19 Jun 2019

Submitted as: research article | 19 Jun 2019

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Climate of the Past (CP).

Advection (non-climate) impact on the South Pole Ice Core

Tyler J. Fudge1, David A. Lilien1,2, Michelle Koutnik1, Howard Conway1, C. Max Stevens1, Edwin D. Waddington1, Eric J. Steig1, and Andrew J. Schauer1 Tyler J. Fudge et al.
  • 1Earth and Space Sciences;University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195
  • 2Physics of Ice, Climate, and Earth;Niels Bohr Institute, Copenhagen, Denmark

Abstract. The South Pole Ice Core (SPICEcore), which spans the past 54,300 years, was drilled far from an ice divide such that ice recovered at depth originated at a location upstream of the current core site. If the climate is different upstream, the climate history recovered from the core will be a combination of the upstream conditions advected to the core site and the temporal changes we seek to recover. Here, we evaluate the impact of ice advection on two fundamental records from SPICEcore: accumulation rate and water isotopes. We determined the past locations of ice deposition based on GPS measurements of the modern velocity field spanning 100 km upstream where ice of ~ 20 ka age would likely have originated. Beyond 100 km, there are no velocity measurements, but ice likely originates from Titan Dome, an additional 90 km distant. Shallow radar measurements extending 100 km upstream from the core site reveal large (~ 20 %) variations in accumulation but no significant trend. Water isotope ratios, measured at 12.5 km intervals for the first 100 km of the flowline, show a decrease with elevation (and distance upstream) of -0.008 ‰ m−1 for δ18O. Advection therefore adds approximately 1 ‰ for δ18O to the LGM-to-modern change. Assuming a lapse rate of 10 °C per km of elevation, the LGM-to-modern temperature change is ~ 1.5 °C greater than if the ice had been deposited at a fixed location.

Tyler J. Fudge et al.
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Short summary
A 1750 m ice core at South Pole was recently drilled. The oldest ice is about 55,000 years old. Because ice at South Pole is flowing at 10 m per year, the ice in the core originated upstream where the climate is different. We made measurements of the ice flow, snow accumulation, and temperature upstream. We determined the ice came from ~ 150 km away near Titan Dome where the accumulation rate was similar but the temperature was colder. These measurements improve the interpretation of the ice core.
A 1750 m ice core at South Pole was recently drilled. The oldest ice is about 55,000 years old....
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