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Extent and Dynamics of the Scandinavian Ice Sheet during Oxygen Isotope Stage 3 (65,000–25,000 yr B.P.) 1

  • Neil S. Arnold (a1), Tjeerd H. van Andel (a2) and Vidar Valen (a3)

Abstract

The climate of the middle Weichselian Glaciation, Marine Oxygen Isotope Stage 3 (OIS-3), a relatively mild period compared to the glacial maxima of OIS-4 and OIS-2, consisted of long warm interstades punctuated by brief cold excursions that grew colder and more frequent with time. The OIS-4 ice sheet is generally thought to have persisted throughout OIS-3, but evidence from dated OIS-3 interstadial deposits suggests that it was swiftly reduced to small remnants which only briefly expanded and retreated. Only 30,000 years ago the deteriorating climate initiated a sustained ice advance leading toward the final glacial maximum of OIS-2. Dynamic ice-sheet models support the existence of a prolonged ice-free interval during OIS-3 induced, perhaps, by low precipitation due to extensive sea-ice cover offshore.

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1

This contribution is the second of a series of articles reporting the results of the Stage 3 project (van Andel, 2002). See the Stage 3 website for details and databases at http.//www.esc.cam.ac.uk/oistage3/Details/Homepage/html

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