Clay-mineral composition and biogenic opal content of Late Neogene to Quaternary sediments of the Antarctic Peninsula region, supplement to: Hillenbrand, Claus-Dieter; Ehrmann, Werner (2005): Late Neogene to Quaternary environmental changes in the Antarctic Peninsula region: evidence from drift sediments. Global and Planetary Change, 45, 165-191


Clay-mineral composition and biogenic opal content in upper Miocene to Quaternary drift sediments recovered at two Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) sites from the continental rise in the Bellingshausen Sea had been analyzed in order to reconstruct the climatic and glacial history of the Antarctic Peninsula. The clay mineral composition at both sites is dominated by smectite, illite, and chlorite, and alternates between a smectite-enriched and a chlorite-enriched assemblage throughout the last 9.3 my. The spatial distribution of clay minerals in Holocene sediments west of the Antarctic Peninsula facilitates the identification of particular source areas, and thus the reconstruction of transport pathways. The similarity to clay mineral variations reported from upper Quaternary sequences suggests that the short-term clay-mineralogical fluctuations in the ODP cores reflect glacial-interglacial cyclicity. Thus, repeated ice advances and retreats in response to a varying size of the Antarctic Peninsula ice cap are likely to have occurred throughout the late Neogene and Quaternary. The clay minerals in the drift sediments exhibit only slight long-term variations, which are caused by local changes in glacial erosion and in supply of source rocks, rather than by major climatic changes.

Metadata Access
Creator Hillenbrand, Claus-Dieter;Ehrmann, Werner
Publisher PANGAEA - Data Publisher for Earth & Environmental Science
Publication Year 2005
Rights Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported (CC-BY)
Language English
Resource Type Supplementary Collection of Datasets
Format application/zip
Discipline Earth System Research
Spatial Coverage (69S-64S,78W-31E)
Temporal Point 1986-04-08T11:59:59Z