History of Anvers-Hugo Trough, western Antarctic Peninsula shelf, since the Last Glacial Maximum. Part I: Deglacial history based on new sedimentological and chronological data

Reconstructing the advance and retreat of past ice sheets provides important long-term context for recent change(s) and enables us to better understand ice sheet responses to forcing mechanisms and external boundary conditions that regulate grounding line retreat. This study applies various radiocarbon dating techniques, guided by a detailed sedimentological analyses, to reconstruct the glacial history of Anvers-Hugo Trough (AHT), one of the largest bathymetric troughs on the western Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) shelf. Existing records from AHT indicate that the expanded Antarctic Peninsula Ice Sheet (APIS) advanced to, or close to, the continental shelf edge during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM; 23-19 cal kyr BP [ = calibrated kiloyears before present]), with deglaciation of the outer shelf after ∼16.3 cal kyr BP. Our new chronological data show that the APIS had retreated to the middle shelf by ∼15.7 cal kyr BP. Over this 600-year interval, two large grounding-zone wedges (GZW) were deposited across the middle (GZW2) and inner shelf (GZW3), suggesting that their formation occurred on centennial rather than millennial timescales. Expanded sequences of sub-ice shelf sediments occur seaward of the inner GZW3, which suggests that the grounding line remained stationary for a prolonged period over the middle shelf. Grounding-line retreat rates indicate faster retreat across the outer to middle shelf compared to retreat across the middle to inner shelf. We suggest that variable retreat rates relate to the broad-scale morphology of the trough, which is characterised by a relatively smooth, retrograde seabed on the outer to middle shelf and rugged morphology with a locally landward shallowing bed and deep basin on the inner shelf. A slowdown in retreat rate could also have been promoted by convergent ice flow over the inner shelf and the availability of pinning points associated with bathymetric highs around Anvers Island and Hugo Island.


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Authors: Roseby, Zoë A. ORCIDORCID record for Zoë A. Roseby, Smith, James A. ORCIDORCID record for James A. Smith, Hillenbrand, Claus-Dieter ORCIDORCID record for Claus-Dieter Hillenbrand, Cartigny, Matthieu J.B., Rosenheim, Brad E., Hogan, Kelly A. ORCIDORCID record for Kelly A. Hogan, Allen, Claire S. ORCIDORCID record for Claire S. Allen, Leventer, Amy, Kuhn, Gerhard, Ehrmann, Werner, Larter, Robert D. ORCIDORCID record for Robert D. Larter

On this site: Claire Allen, Claus-Dieter Hillenbrand, James Smith, Kelly Hogan, Robert Larter, Zoe Roseby
1 September, 2022
Quaternary Science Reviews / 291
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