High resolution measurements of snow accumulation in Central Greenland: Present – 86,000 years BP. Search for possible solar and climatic effects
Swanson, Ian Richard
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We used laser light scattering (LLS) data of dust concentration in polar ice to calculate the annual layer thickness in Greenland Ice Sheet Project 2 (GISP2) ice (Ram and Illing, 1994; Ram et al. 1995). Since changes in annual layer thickness is an accepted method for determining changes in snow accumulation (Meese et al. 1994), we calculated annual layer thickness for multiple sections of the ice core with each section containing 400-500 years of data. From these measurements, we were able to discern a quasi-periodic 3-7 year signal (average period of ~3.8 years). No known phenomenon has such a varying period with an average of 4 years except the El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) (Phillander, 2003; Mann et al. 2000). Even though ENSO originates in the equatorial Pacific, it is known to have global atmospheric teleconnections affecting areas like India & North America (Glantz, 2001). We use our high resolution measurements of snow accumulation in Greenland with a quasi periodic signal ranging from 3-7 years as a basis for identifying ENSO and its teleconnections to Greenland going as far back in the past as 86,000 years.