Centennial-scale Asian monsoon variability during the mid-Younger Dryas from Qingtian Cave, central China

Dianbing Liu, Yongjin Wang, Hai Cheng, Xinggong Kong, Shitao Chen

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34 Scopus citations


The regional climate correlation within the Northern Hemisphere in the cold/dry mid-Younger Dryas event (YD) remains elusive. A key to unraveling this issue is sufficient knowledge of the detailed climate variability at the low latitudes. Here we present a high-resolution (3-yr) δ18O record of an annually laminated stalagmite from central China that reveals a detailed Asian monsoon (AM) history from 13.36 to 10.99ka. The YD in this record is expressed as three phases, characterized by gradual onsets but rapid ends. During the mid-YD, the AM variability exhibited an increasing trend superimposed by three centennial oscillations, well-correlated to changes in Greenland temperatures. These warming/wetting fluctuations show a periodicity of ~200yr, generally in agreement with centennial changes in cosmogenic nuclides indicated by the 10Be flux from the Greenland ice. This relationship implies that centennial-scale climate changes during the mid-YD are probably caused by solar output and rapidly transported over broad regions through atmosphere reorganization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)199-206
Number of pages8
JournalQuaternary Research (United States)
Issue number2
StatePublished - Sep 2013

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We are grateful to C. Spötl for his generous technical comments on an early version of the manuscript. Thanks are also given to an anonymous reviewer for his/her critical and instructive comments. This work was supported by grants of National Nature Science Foundation of China (No. 41172148 , 41130210 , 41072126 ), and the Priority Academic Program Development of Jiangsu Higher Education Institutions (PAPD) .


  • Annually laminated stalagmite
  • Asian monsoon Younger Dryas
  • Qingtian Cave
  • Sub-millennial oscillations


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