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A community-based geological reconstruction of Antarctic Ice Sheet deglaciation since the Last Glacial Maximum

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Bethan DaviesORCiD



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


A robust understanding of Antarctic Ice Sheet deglacial history since the Last Glacial Maximum is important in order to constrain ice sheet and glacial-isostatic adjustment models, and to explore the forcing mechanisms responsible for ice sheet retreat. Such understanding can be derived from a broad range of geological and glaciological datasets and recent decades have seen an upsurge in such data gathering around the continent and Sub-Antarctic islands. Here, we report a new synthesis of those datasets, based on an accompanying series of reviews of the geological data, organised by sector. We present a series of timeslice maps for 20ka, 15ka, 10ka and 5ka, including grounding line position and ice sheet thickness changes, along with a clear assessment of levels of confidence. The reconstruction shows that the Antarctic Ice sheet did not everywhere reach the continental shelf edge at its maximum, that initial retreat was asynchronous, and that the spatial pattern of deglaciation was highly variable, particularly on the inner shelf. The deglacial reconstruction is consistent with a moderate overall excess ice volume and with a relatively small Antarctic contribution to meltwater pulse 1a. We discuss key areas of uncertainty both around the continent and by time interval, and we highlight potential priorit. © 2014 The Authors.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Bentley MJ, Ocofaigh C, Anderson JB, Conway H, Davies B, Graham AGC, Hillenbrand C-D, Hodgson DA, Jamieson SSR, Larter RD, Mackintosh A, Smith JA, Verleyen E, Ackert RP, Bart PJ, Berg S, Brunstein D, Canals M, Colhoun EA, Crosta X, Dickens WA, Domack E, Dowdeswell JA, Dunbar R, Ehrmann W, Evans J, Favier V, Fink D, Fogwill CJ, Glasser NF, Gohl K, Golledge NR, Goodwin I, Gore DB, Greenwood SL, Hall BL, Hall K, Hedding DW, Hein AS, Hocking EP, Jakobsson M, Johnson JS, Jomelli V, Jones RS, Klages JP, Kristoffersen Y, Kuhn G, Leventer A, Licht K, Lilly K, Lindow J, Livingstone SJ, Masse G, McGlone MS, McKay RM, Melles M, Miura H, Mulvaney R, Nel W, Nitsche FO, O'Brien PE, Post AL, Roberts SJ, Saunders KM, Selkirk PM, Simms AR, Spiegel C, Stolldorf TD, Sugden DE, van der Putten N, van Ommen T, Verfaillie D, Vyverman W, Wagner B, White DA, Witus AE, Zwartz D

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Quaternary Science Reviews

Year: 2014

Volume: 100

Pages: 1-9

Print publication date: 15/09/2014

Online publication date: 22/07/2014

Acceptance date: 18/06/2014

Date deposited: 22/08/2022

ISSN (print): 0277-3791

ISSN (electronic): 1873-457X

Publisher: Elsevier Ltd


DOI: 10.1016/j.quascirev.2014.06.025


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