skip to main content
DOE PAGES title logo U.S. Department of Energy
Office of Scientific and Technical Information

Title: Asynchronous warming and δ 18O evolution of deep Atlantic water masses during the last deglaciation

Abstract

The large-scale reorganization of deep ocean circulation in the Atlantic involving changes in North Atlantic Deep Water (NADW) and Antarctic Bottom Water (AABW) played a critical role in regulating hemispheric and global climate during the last deglaciation. However, changes in the relative contributions of NADW and AABW and their properties are poorly constrained by marine records, including δ 18O of benthic foraminiferal calcite (δ 18Oc). Here in this study, we use an isotope-enabled ocean general circulation model with realistic geometry and forcing conditions to simulate the deglacial water mass and δ 18O evolution. Model results suggest that, in response to North Atlantic freshwater forcing during the early phase of the last deglaciation, NADW nearly collapses, while AABW mildly weakens. Rather than reflecting changes in NADW or AABW properties caused by freshwater input as suggested previously, the observed phasing difference of deep δ 18O c likely reflects early warming of the deep northern North Atlantic by ~1.4 °C, while deep Southern Ocean temperature remains largely unchanged. We propose a thermodynamic mechanism to explain the early warming in the North Atlantic, featuring a strong middepth warming and enhanced downward heat flux via vertical mixing. Our results emphasize that the way that oceanmore » circulation affects heat, a dynamic tracer, is considerably different from how it affects passive tracers, like δ 18O, and call for caution when inferring water mass changes from δ 18O c records while assuming uniform changes in deep temperatures.« less

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1];  [2];  [3]; ORCiD logo [4];  [5]; ORCiD logo [6];  [7];  [3]
  1. Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States). Center for Climatic Research; Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States). Dept. of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences; Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
  2. Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States). Center for Climatic Research; Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States). Dept. of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences; The Ohio State Univ., Columbus, OH (United States). Dept. of Geography, Atmospheric Science Program
  3. National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, CO (United States). Climate and Global Dynamics Division
  4. Woods Hole Oceanographic Inst., Woods Hole, MA (United States). Dept. of Geology and Geophysics
  5. Oregon State Univ., Corvallis, OR (United States). College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences
  6. Univ. of Colorado, Boulder, CO (United States). Dept. of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences; Univ. of Colorado, Boulder, CO (United States). Inst. of Arctic and Alpine Research
  7. Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States). Dept. of Geoscience
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC); National Science Foundation (NSF); USDOE Laboratory Directed Research and Development (LDRD) Program
OSTI Identifier:
1412877
Report Number(s):
LA-UR-17-28261
Journal ID: ISSN 0027-8424
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC52-06NA25396; SC0006744; 41630527
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 114; Journal Issue: 42; Journal ID: ISSN 0027-8424
Publisher:
National Academy of Sciences, Washington, DC (United States)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; Earth Sciences; Atlantic water masses; last deglaciation; oxygen isotopes; deep ocean warming

Citation Formats

Zhang, Jiaxu, Liu, Zhengyu, Brady, Esther C., Oppo, Delia W., Clark, Peter U., Jahn, Alexandra, Marcott, Shaun A., and Lindsay, Keith. Asynchronous warming and δ18O evolution of deep Atlantic water masses during the last deglaciation. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.1073/pnas.1704512114.
Zhang, Jiaxu, Liu, Zhengyu, Brady, Esther C., Oppo, Delia W., Clark, Peter U., Jahn, Alexandra, Marcott, Shaun A., & Lindsay, Keith. Asynchronous warming and δ18O evolution of deep Atlantic water masses during the last deglaciation. United States. doi:10.1073/pnas.1704512114.
Zhang, Jiaxu, Liu, Zhengyu, Brady, Esther C., Oppo, Delia W., Clark, Peter U., Jahn, Alexandra, Marcott, Shaun A., and Lindsay, Keith. Mon . "Asynchronous warming and δ18O evolution of deep Atlantic water masses during the last deglaciation". United States. doi:10.1073/pnas.1704512114. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1412877.
@article{osti_1412877,
title = {Asynchronous warming and δ18O evolution of deep Atlantic water masses during the last deglaciation},
author = {Zhang, Jiaxu and Liu, Zhengyu and Brady, Esther C. and Oppo, Delia W. and Clark, Peter U. and Jahn, Alexandra and Marcott, Shaun A. and Lindsay, Keith},
abstractNote = {The large-scale reorganization of deep ocean circulation in the Atlantic involving changes in North Atlantic Deep Water (NADW) and Antarctic Bottom Water (AABW) played a critical role in regulating hemispheric and global climate during the last deglaciation. However, changes in the relative contributions of NADW and AABW and their properties are poorly constrained by marine records, including δ18O of benthic foraminiferal calcite (δ18Oc). Here in this study, we use an isotope-enabled ocean general circulation model with realistic geometry and forcing conditions to simulate the deglacial water mass and δ18O evolution. Model results suggest that, in response to North Atlantic freshwater forcing during the early phase of the last deglaciation, NADW nearly collapses, while AABW mildly weakens. Rather than reflecting changes in NADW or AABW properties caused by freshwater input as suggested previously, the observed phasing difference of deep δ18Oc likely reflects early warming of the deep northern North Atlantic by ~1.4 °C, while deep Southern Ocean temperature remains largely unchanged. We propose a thermodynamic mechanism to explain the early warming in the North Atlantic, featuring a strong middepth warming and enhanced downward heat flux via vertical mixing. Our results emphasize that the way that ocean circulation affects heat, a dynamic tracer, is considerably different from how it affects passive tracers, like δ18O, and call for caution when inferring water mass changes from δ18Oc records while assuming uniform changes in deep temperatures.},
doi = {10.1073/pnas.1704512114},
journal = {Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America},
number = 42,
volume = 114,
place = {United States},
year = {2017},
month = {10}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record

Citation Metrics:
Cited by: 5 works
Citation information provided by
Web of Science

Save / Share:

Works referenced in this record:

Sea level and global ice volumes from the Last Glacial Maximum to the Holocene
journal, October 2014

  • Lambeck, K.; Rouby, H.; Purcell, A.
  • Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 111, Issue 43
  • DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1411762111

Global warming preceded by increasing carbon dioxide concentrations during the last deglaciation
journal, April 2012

  • Shakun, Jeremy D.; Clark, Peter U.; He, Feng
  • Nature, Vol. 484, Issue 7392
  • DOI: 10.1038/nature10915

Ocean oxygen isotope constraints on mechanisms for millennial-scale climate variability: MECHANISMS FOR CLIMATE VARIABILITY
journal, February 2005

  • Olsen, Steffen Malskaer; Shaffer, Gary; Bjerrum, Christian J.
  • Paleoceanography, Vol. 20, Issue 1
  • DOI: 10.1029/2004PA001063

Quantification of factors impacting seawater and calcite δ 18 O during Heinrich Stadials 1 and 4 : δ
journal, July 2015

  • Bagniewski, Witold; Meissner, Katrin J.; Menviel, Laurie
  • Paleoceanography, Vol. 30, Issue 7
  • DOI: 10.1002/2014PA002751

Antarctic sea ice and the control of Pleistocene climate instability
journal, February 2001

  • Keeling, Ralph F.; Stephens, Britton B.
  • Paleoceanography, Vol. 16, Issue 1
  • DOI: 10.1029/2000PA000529

Evolution of South Atlantic density and chemical stratification across the last deglaciation
journal, January 2016

  • Roberts, Jenny; Gottschalk, Julia; Skinner, Luke C.
  • Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 113, Issue 3
  • DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1511252113

Southwest Atlantic water mass evolution during the last deglaciation: DEGLACIAL SOUTHWEST ATLANTIC CIRCULATION
journal, May 2015

  • Lund, D. C.; Tessin, A. C.; Hoffman, J. L.
  • Paleoceanography, Vol. 30, Issue 5
  • DOI: 10.1002/2014PA002657

Ventilation of the Deep Southern Ocean and Deglacial CO2 Rise
journal, May 2010


Greenland temperature response to climate forcing during the last deglaciation
journal, September 2014


Millennial-scale variability of deep-water temperature and δ 18 O dw indicating deep-water source variations in the Northeast Atlantic, 0-34 cal. ka BP : DEEP-WATER TEMPERATURE AND δ
journal, December 2003

  • Skinner, L. C.; Shackleton, N. J.; Elderfield, H.
  • Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, Vol. 4, Issue 12
  • DOI: 10.1029/2003GC000585

Meltwater routing and the Younger Dryas
journal, November 2012

  • Condron, A.; Winsor, P.
  • Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 109, Issue 49
  • DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1207381109

Abrupt pre-Bølling–Allerød warming and circulation changes in the deep ocean
journal, July 2014

  • Thiagarajan, Nivedita; Subhas, Adam V.; Southon, John R.
  • Nature, Vol. 511, Issue 7507
  • DOI: 10.1038/nature13472

The Deep Ocean Buoyancy Budget and Its Temporal Variability
journal, January 2014

  • Palter, Jaime B.; Griffies, Stephen M.; Samuels, Bonita L.
  • Journal of Climate, Vol. 27, Issue 2
  • DOI: 10.1175/JCLI-D-13-00016.1

The Effects of Mesoscale Eddies on the Stratification and Transport of an Ocean with a Circumpolar Channel
journal, May 2005

  • Henning, Cara C.; Vallis, Geoffrey K.
  • Journal of Physical Oceanography, Vol. 35, Issue 5
  • DOI: 10.1175/JPO2727.1

Atlantic Subsurface Temperatures: Response to a Shutdown of the Overturning Circulation and Consequences for Its Recovery
journal, October 2007

  • Mignot, J.; Ganopolski, A.; Levermann, A.
  • Journal of Climate, Vol. 20, Issue 19
  • DOI: 10.1175/JCLI4280.1

The last glacial cycle: transient simulations with an AOGCM
journal, January 2012


Radiocarbon evidence for alternating northern and southern sources of ventilation of the deep Atlantic carbon pool during the last deglaciation
journal, March 2014

  • Skinner, L. C.; Waelbroeck, C.; Scrivner, A. E.
  • Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 111, Issue 15
  • DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1400668111

Thermohaline Oscillations Induced by Strong Steady Salinity Forcing of Ocean General Circulation Models
journal, July 1993


On the nature of lead–lag relationships during glacial–interglacial climate transitions
journal, December 2009


Chinese cave records and the East Asia Summer Monsoon
journal, January 2014


Deconstructing Terminations I and II: revisiting the glacioeustatic paradigm based on deep-water temperature estimates
journal, December 2006


Global climate evolution during the last deglaciation
journal, February 2012

  • Clark, P. U.; Shakun, J. D.; Baker, P. A.
  • Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 109, Issue 19
  • DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1116619109

Termination 1 timing in radiocarbon-dated regional benthic δ 18 O stacks : Regional benthic δ18O stacks
journal, December 2014

  • Stern, Joseph V.; Lisiecki, Lorraine E.
  • Paleoceanography, Vol. 29, Issue 12
  • DOI: 10.1002/2014PA002700

What do benthic δ 13 C and δ 18 O data tell us about Atlantic circulation during Heinrich Stadial 1?
journal, April 2015

  • Oppo, Delia W.; Curry, William B.; McManus, Jerry F.
  • Paleoceanography, Vol. 30, Issue 4
  • DOI: 10.1002/2014PA002667

Synchronous Deglacial Overturning and Water Mass Source Changes
journal, December 2009


LGM hosing approach to Heinrich Event 1: results and perspectives from data–model integration using water isotopes
journal, December 2014


Early deglacial Atlantic overturning decline and its role in atmospheric CO 2 rise inferred from carbon isotopes (δ 13 C)
journal, January 2015


Improved oxygen isotope temperature calibrations for cosmopolitan benthic foraminifera
journal, April 2014

  • Marchitto, T. M.; Curry, W. B.; Lynch-Stieglitz, J.
  • Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, Vol. 130
  • DOI: 10.1016/j.gca.2013.12.034

Transient Simulation of Last Deglaciation with a New Mechanism for Bolling-Allerod Warming
journal, July 2009


Carbon isotopes in the ocean model of the Community Earth System Model (CESM1)
journal, January 2015


Ice-shelf collapse from subsurface warming as a trigger for Heinrich events
journal, August 2011

  • Marcott, S. A.; Clark, P. U.; Padman, L.
  • Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 108, Issue 33
  • DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1104772108

The timing of deglacial circulation changes in the Atlantic: ATLANTIC DEGLACIAL CIRCULATION CHANGES
journal, August 2011

  • Waelbroeck, C.; Skinner, L. C.; Labeyrie, L.
  • Paleoceanography, Vol. 26, Issue 3
  • DOI: 10.1029/2010PA002007

Paleocean circulation during the Last Deglaciation: A bipolar seesaw?
journal, April 1998


Intermediate and deep water paleoceanography of the northern North Atlantic over the past 21,000 years: N ATLANTIC DEEPWATER PAST 21 KA
journal, March 2010

  • Thornalley, David J. R.; Elderfield, Harry; McCave, I. Nick
  • Paleoceanography, Vol. 25, Issue 1
  • DOI: 10.1029/2009PA001833

The oxygen isotopic composition of seawater during the Last Glacial Maximum
journal, January 2002


Collapse and rapid resumption of Atlantic meridional circulation linked to deglacial climate changes
journal, April 2004

  • McManus, J. F.; Francois, R.; Gherardi, J. -M.
  • Nature, Vol. 428, Issue 6985
  • DOI: 10.1038/nature02494

The polar ocean and glacial cycles in atmospheric CO2 concentration
journal, July 2010

  • Sigman, Daniel M.; Hain, Mathis P.; Haug, Gerald H.
  • Nature, Vol. 466, Issue 7302
  • DOI: 10.1038/nature09149