Clay mineralogy of sediment cores from the Arctic Ocean, supplement to: Vogt, Christoph; Knies, Jochen (2008): Sediment dynamics in the Eurasian Arctic Ocean during the last deglaciation - The clay mineral group smectite perspective. Marine Geology, 250(3-4), 211-222


This study focuses on sedimentological investigations of sediment cores recovered during the international Arctic'91, expeditions with the German research ice breaker RV “Polarstern” to the European sector of the Arctic Ocean. Here, we deduce the last glacial/interglacial changes in transport mechanism and sedimentation from the clay mineral group smectite. We choose the smectites as an example of how sediment mineralogy can be linked with particular source regions (the Kara and Laptev seas), distinct transport mechanism (sea ice and surface currents) and sedimentation processes. Smectite contents in Arctic sediments discussed for two time slices, including the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM), and the last deglaciation (Termination I), reveal the highest variability subsequent to the retreat of the Eurasian ice sheets. Our results show that smectite anomalies in the Eurasian Basin are associated with distinct meltwater pulses and occurred around 13.5-13.0 14C ka B.P. Compelling evidence is provided that these anomalies are deduced from sea-ice entrained sediments from the eastern Kara Sea that entered the Arctic Ocean after ice-sheet break-up and eventually flooding of the Kara Sea. We propose that smectite anomalies in sediments of the eastern Arctic Ocean can be utilized to identify deglacial events and to help decipher configurations of the Eurasian ice sheets. The identification of smectite maxima along the modern sea-ice edge in the Eurasian Basin further indicates biologically enhanced sedimentation from melting sea ice allowing the reconstruction of seasonally open water in the region. Hence, considering the poor preservation conditions of primary paleoceanographic proxies in the Arctic Ocean, the clay mineral contents, particularly the smectite group, may be one alternative tool for paleoclimatic reconstruction in the Eurasian Basin.

Related Identifier
Metadata Access
Creator Vogt, Christoph; Knies, Jochen
Publisher PANGAEA - Data Publisher for Earth & Environmental Science
Publication Year 2008
Rights Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported
OpenAccess true
Language English
Resource Type Supplementary Collection of Datasets
Format application/zip
Size 27 datasets
Discipline Earth System Research
Spatial Coverage (0.000W, 81.755S, 159.167E, 90.000N); Svalbard; Nansen Basin; Gakkel Ridge, Arctic Ocean; Amundsen Basin; Lomonosov Ridge, Arctic Ocean; Makarov Basin
Temporal Coverage Begin 1991-08-06T00:00:00Z
Temporal Coverage End 1991-09-10T00:00:00Z