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Pleistocene variations of beryllium isotopes in central Arctic Ocean sediment cores
Responsible organisation
2009 (English)In: Global and Planetary Change, ISSN 0921-8181, E-ISSN 1872-6364, Vol. 68, no 1-2, SI, 38-47 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Neogene marine sediments can be dated via decay of the cosmogenic radionuclide Be-10. Two cores from the Alpha and Mendeleev Ridges in the Arctic Ocean have been analyzed for seawater-derived beryllium (Be) isotopes in order to date the sediments and to calculate sedimentation rates. The decrease of Be-10 concentration in the cores was used to calculate first order sedimentation rates. To eliminate the dilution effect of beryllium caused by short-term changes in sedimentation rate and grain size, the Be-10 concentrations were normalized to the terrigenous stable isotope Be-9 determined in the same sample aliquot. The measured Be-10 concentrations yield low average sedimentation rates for the Alpha and Mendeleev Ridges of 2.3 mm ka(-1) and 2.7 mm ka(-1), respectively. Sedimentation rates calculated from the Be-10/Be-9 ratios result in similarly low values, ranging from 0.2 to 6.8 mm ka(-1) for the Alpha Ridge core and from 1.9 to 6.9 mm ka(-1) for the Mendeleev Ridge core. However, amino acid racemization dating for the past 150 ka of a core adjacent to the Mendeleev Ridge core studied here indicates significantly higher sedimentation rates than calculated from the downcore decrease of Be-10 and Be-10/Be-9. If such higher rates also prevailed at the locations of our cores, for which there is biostratigraphic evidence, either the supply of Be-10 was much lower than assumed or that of Be-9 was much higher. This could imply that the signature of the deep waters in this part of the Arctic Ocean compared to today was largely different for most of the past approximately one million years with a significantly lower Be-10/Be-9 ratio. Our study also addresses the variability of beryllium isotopes in sediment cores across the Arctic Ocean through a comparison of previously published results. Calculated Be-10 fluxes reveal low values in the Amerasian Basin and highest values in the Eurasian Basin, near the Fram. Strait. The decrease of Be isotopes in the two studied Amerasian Basin cores may thus have been caused by environmental factors such as significantly reduced inflow of Atlantic waters in the past, reduced input of Be-10 and/or increased input of Be-9 from the shelves, combined with a more efficient sea ice shielding in this part of the Arctic Ocean. (C) 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2009. Vol. 68, no 1-2, SI, 38-47 p.
Keyword [en]
beryllium isotopes; Arctic Ocean; sedimentation rates; fluxes
National Category
Natural Sciences
Research subject
SWEDARCTIC 2005, Beringia 2005; SWEDARCTIC, SWEDARCTIC 2005
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:polar:diva-3103DOI: 10.1016/j.gloplacha.2009.03.024OAI: oai:DiVA.org:polar-3103DiVA: diva2:1044909
Available from: 2016-11-07 Created: 2016-10-27 Last updated: 2016-11-07

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