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Multidisciplinary study Of Continental/ocean Climate dynamics using High-resolution records from the eastern mediterraneAn (MOCCHA): Part 2

English title Multidisciplinary study Of Continental/ocean Climate dynamics using High-resolution records from the eastern mediterraneAn (MOCCHA): Part 2
Applicant Bernasconi Stefano
Number 134987
Funding scheme Project funding
Research institution Geologisches Institut ETH Zürich
Institution of higher education ETH Zurich - ETHZ
Main discipline Geochemistry
Start/End 01.04.2011 - 31.03.2012
Approved amount 58'884.00
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All Disciplines (2)

Discipline
Geochemistry
Geology

Keywords (8)

mediterranean; Foraminifera; Paleoclimate; Clumped isotopes; palaeoceanography; isotope geochemistry; climate change; holocene

Lay Summary (English)

Lead
Lay summary
The Mediterranean sea is located at a strategic position between low and mid-latitude borderlands, and between monsoonal and North Atlantic-influenced climate systems. Therefore, it is an important and sensitive site to obtain continuous high-resolution paleoclimate records over at least one Glacial-Interglacial interval. Such records are rare but vital for our understanding of causes and consequences of climate and environmental change at decadal to millennial time scales. High-resolution records are extremely difficult to obtain in marine settings because of bioturbation, degradation, and low sedimentation rates. However, one coring site that is being studied in detail during this project, is characterized by high sedimentation rates and is very sensitive to climate variation and is providing climate reconstructions with sub-decadal resolution.At this near-coastal site in the Gulf of Taranto we have obtained a multi-proxy record of climate combining organic geochemical temperature proxies (TEX86 and Alkenones) with oxygen isotopes in foraminifera and the novel method of "Clumped Isotopes thermometry" which is being used for the first time to reconstruct paleoclimate at high resolution. This project aims at assessing the origin and mechanisms of the observed climatic variations, and to provide a basis to evaluate their potential functioning in more remote time periods such as may be recovered using IODP drilling.
Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 21.02.2013

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Publications

Publication
Clumped-isotope geochemistry of carbonates: A new tool for the reconstruction of temperature and oxygen isotope composition of seawater
Bernasconi SM, Schmid TW, Grauel AL (2011), Clumped-isotope geochemistry of carbonates: A new tool for the reconstruction of temperature and oxygen isotope composition of seawater, in Mutterlose, J, 26, 26.
Core-top calibration of delta O-18 and delta C-13 of G. ruber (white) and U. mediterranea along the southern Adriatic coast of Italy
Grauel AL, Bernasconi SM (2010), Core-top calibration of delta O-18 and delta C-13 of G. ruber (white) and U. mediterranea along the southern Adriatic coast of Italy, in MARINE MICROPALEONTOLOGY, 77(3-4), 175-186.

Scientific events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Title of article or contribution Date Place Persons involved
Ocean Science Meeting 2012 20.02.2012 Salt lake City, USA
9th Swiss Geoscience Meeting, 11.11.2011 Zürich, Switzerland
Invited talk, Seminare der Goethe Universität Frankfurt am Main 30.09.2011 Frankfurt am Main, Deutschland
2nd international workshop on clumped isotopes 10.08.2011 London, UK
EGU General Assembly 2011 03.04.2011 Vienna, Austria


Self-organised

Title Date Place
25th International Meeting on Organic Geochemistry (IMOG) 18.09.2011 Interlaken, Switzerland

Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
139701 CenoClump: Cenozoic ocean temperature reconstruction based on clumped isotopes 01.02.2012 Marie Heim-Voegtlin grants
160046 Clumped Isotope Thermometry in burial diagenetic systems - part 2: new constraints on the kinetics of 13C-18O bond reordering from contact metamorphic aureoles of magmatic intrusions 01.04.2015 Project funding
160377 Glacial-interglacial temperature changes based on clumped isotopes in foraminifera from the Mediterranean Sea. 01.01.2015 International short research visits
115934 Multidisciplinary study of continental/ocean climate dynamics using high-resolution records from the eastern mediterranean (MOCCHA) 01.04.2008 Project funding (special)
147139 Swiss participation in the International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) through membership in the European Consortium for Ocean Research Drilling (ECORD) 01.01.2014 Research Infrastructure
143485 Application of Clumped Isotope Thermometry to burial diagenetic and low temperature hydrothermal systems. 01.02.2013 Project funding
132646 STALCLIM - Multi-proxy climatic and environmental reconstructions from stalagmites from Switzerland, Turkey, Arabia and India 01.01.2011 Sinergia
154501 4th International Workshop on Clumped Isotopes 01.08.2014 Scientific Conferences

Abstract

The eastern Mediterranean Sea is a climatologically sensitive area between monsoonal and NAO-influenced climate systems. As a transition area between the subtropical high pressure belt and the mid-latitude westerlies (Trigo et al. 1998), the Mediterranean region can be used to identify changes in the intensity and extent of global-scale climate patterns, such as NAO, ENSO and the Asian Monsoon (Lionello et al. 2006). The MOCCHA project, a “Multidisciplinary study Of Continental/ocean Climate dynamics using High-resolution records from the eastern MediterrAnean", is part of the EUROCORES-EUROMARGIN program. It aims at calibrating and validating new marine and terrestrial paleoclimate proxies and apply to reconstruction climate from sediment cores from the Gulf of Taranto and is a collaboration between G. De Lange (Utrecht University), K. Zonneveld (University of Bremen) and G. Versteegh (University of Bremen) and the PI at ETH Zurich. With this proposal we request funding for one year salary for the PhD student A-L. Grauel to complete ongoing measurements to obtain a complete climate record.A-L Grauel is reconstructing the climate evolution of the last 2500 years at subdecadal resolution based on isotope analysis of planktonic foraminifera. In addition, she is testing and calibrating the ‘clumped isotope’ thermometer (Ghosh et al. 2006) for the foraminifera G. ruber (white). This new technique provides the opportunity to determine the temperature of the precipitation of the calcite via the abundance of 13C- 18O bonds in carbonate and at the same time to calculate the d18O of sea water in which the organism lived. We are using a newly developed technique, which allows for the first time to measure sediment cores at high-resolution. To date, clumped-isotopes have been measured on samples covering the time intervals from 2005AD to 1400AD and from 1200AD to 200BC. We find that in the last 50 years the obtained clumped-isotope temperatures are in good agreement with measured sea surface temperatures with an accuracy of ± 2°C or better. Thus we show that this new method is a robust new tool for reconstructing changes in temperature and d18O of seawater, and thus of salinity, on exactly the same sample. This work shows that this method has the potential to solve many paleoceanographic questions.We observed that SST’s did not change significantly over the last 2000 years, but that changes in salinity on the order of 1-2 PSU are not uncommon, suggesting changes in circulation and freshwater runoff. Additional analyses core top samples, however, will be necessary to improve our calibration of the clumped-isotope signatures of G. ruber (white). Furthermore the main goal of the next year is to close the gap between the short and the long core (1200AD to 1400 AD) to get a continuous climate record over the last 2500 years.
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