Millions of Years of Greenland Ice Sheet History Recorded in Ocean Sediments

Jørn Thiede, Catherine Jessen, Paul Knutz, Antoon Kuijpers, Naja Mikkelsen, Niels Nørgaard-Pedersen, Robert F. Spielhagen

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review


Geological records from Tertiary and Quaternary terrestrial and
oceanic sections have documented the presence of ice caps and sea ice covers
both in the Southern and the Northern hemispheres since Eocene times,
approximately since 45 Ma. In this paper focussing on Greenland we mainly
use the occurrences of coarse ice-rafted debris (IRD) in Quaternary and
Tertiary ocean sediment cores to conclude on age and origin of the glaciers/ice
sheets, which once produced the icebergs transporting this material into the
adjacent ocean. Deep-sea sediment cores with their records of ice-rafting from
off NE Greenland, Fram Strait and to the south of Greenland suggest the more
or less continuous existence of the Greenland ice sheet since 18 Ma, maybe
much longer, and hence far beyond the stratigraphic extent of the Greenland
ice cores. The timing of onset of glaciation on Greenland and whether it has
been glaciated continuously since, are wide open questions of its long-term
history. We also urgently need new scientific drilling programs in the waters
around Greenland, in particular in the segment of the Arctic Ocean to the
north of Greenland.
Udgave nummer3
Sider (fra-til)141-159
StatusUdgivet - 2011
Udgivet eksterntJa