Persistent link between solar activity and Greenland climate during the Last Glacial Maximum

Florian Adolphi, Raimund Muscheler, Anders Svensson, Ala Aldahan, Göran Possnert, Jürg Beer, Jesper Sjolte, Svante Björck, Katja Matthes, Rémi Thiéblemont

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

73 Citations (Scopus)


Changes in solar activity have previously been proposed to cause decadal- to millennial-scale fluctuations in both the modern and Holocene climates. Direct observational records of solar activity, such as sunspot numbers, exist for only the past few hundred years, so solar variability for earlier periods is typically reconstructed from measurements of cosmogenic radionuclides such as 10 Be and 14 C from ice cores and tree rings. Here we present a high-resolution 10 Be record from the ice core collected from central Greenland by the Greenland Ice Core Project (GRIP). The record spans from 22,500 to 10,000 years ago, and is based on new and compiled data. Using 14 C records to control for climate-related influences on 10 Be deposition, we reconstruct centennial changes in solar activity. We find that during the Last Glacial Maximum, solar minima correlate with more negative 18 O values of ice and are accompanied by increased snow accumulation and sea-salt input over central Greenland. We suggest that solar minima could have induced changes in the stratosphere that favour the development of high-pressure blocking systems located to the south of Greenland, as has been found in observations and model simulations for recent climate. We conclude that the mechanism behind solar forcing of regional climate change may have been similar under both modern and Last Glacial Maximum climate conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)662-666
Number of pages5
JournalNature Geoscience
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)


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