Reconstruction of east–west deep water exchange in the low latitude Atlantic Ocean over the past 25,000 years

Howe, Jacob N. W. and Piotrowski, Alexander M. and Hu, Rong and Bory, Aloys (2017) Reconstruction of east–west deep water exchange in the low latitude Atlantic Ocean over the past 25,000 years. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 458. pp. 327-336. ISSN 0012-821X DOI

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Radiogenic neodymium isotopes have been used as a water mass mixing proxy to investigate past changes in ocean circulation. Here we present a new depth transect of deglacial neodymium isotope records measured on uncleaned planktic foraminifera from five cores spanning from 3300 to 4900 m on the Mauritanian margin, in the tropical eastern Atlantic as well as an additional record from 4000 m on the Ceara Rise in the equatorial western Atlantic. Despite being located under the Saharan dust plume, the eastern Atlantic records differ from the composition of detrital inputs through time and exhibit similar values to the western Atlantic foraminiferal Nd across the deglaciation. Therefore we interpret the foraminiferal values as recording deep water Nd isotope changes. All six cores shift to less radiogenic values across the deglaciation, indicating that they were bathed by a lower proportion of North Atlantic Deep Water during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) relative to the Holocene. The eastern Atlantic records also show that a neodymium isotope gradient was present during the LGM and during the deglaciation, with more radiogenic values observed at the deepest sites. A homogeneous water mass observed below 3750 m in the deepest eastern Atlantic during the LGM is attributed to the mixing of deep water by rough topography as it passes from the western Atlantic through the fracture zones in the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. This implies that during the LGM the low latitude deep eastern Atlantic was ventilated from the western Atlantic via advection through fracture zones in the same manner as occurs in the modern ocean. Comparison with carbon isotopes indicates there was more respired carbon in the deep eastern than deep western Atlantic during the LGM, as is also seen in the modern Atlantic Ocean.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: 2016AREP; IA71
Subjects: 01 - Climate Change and Earth-Ocean Atmosphere Systems
Divisions: 01 - Climate Change and Earth-Ocean Atmosphere Systems
07 - Gold Open Access
12 - PhD
Journal or Publication Title: Earth and Planetary Science Letters
Volume: 458
Page Range: pp. 327-336
Identification Number:
Depositing User: Sarah Humbert
Date Deposited: 12 Apr 2017 21:50
Last Modified: 08 Jan 2019 12:44

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