Late Quaternary sea-level change and evolution of Belfast Lough, Northern Ireland: new offshore evidence and implications for sea-level reconstruction

Ruth Plets, Louise Callard, Andrew Cooper, J. T. Kelley, Daniel Belknap, Robin Edwards, Antony Long, Rory Quinn, DWT Jackson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The interplay of eustatic and isostatic factors causes complex relative sea-level (RSL) histories, particularly in paraglacial settings. In this context the past record of RSL is important in understanding ice-sheet history, earth rheology and resulting glacio-isostatic adjustment. Field data to develop sea-level reconstructions are often limited to shallow depths and uncertainty exists as to the veracity of modelled sea-level curves. We use seismic stratigraphy, 39 vibrocores and 26 radiocarbon dates to investigate the deglacial history of Belfast Lough, Northern Ireland, and reconstruct past RSL. A typical sequence of till, glacimarine and Holocene sediments is preserved. Two sea-level lowstands (both max. −40 m) are recorded at c. 13.5 and 11.5k cal a bp. Each is followed by a rapid transgression and subsequent periods of RSL stability. The first transgression coincides temporally with a late stage of Meltwater Pulse 1a and the RSL stability occurred between c. 13.0 and c. 12.2k cal a bp (Younger Dryas). The second still/slowstand occurred between c. 10.3 and c. 11.5k cal a bp. Our data provide constraints on the direction and timing of RSL change during deglaciation. Application of the Depth of Closure concept adds an error term to sea-level reconstructions based on seismic stratigraphic reconstructions.

LanguageEnglish
Pages285-298
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Quaternary Science
Volume34
Issue number4-5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 28 Jun 2019

Fingerprint

sea level change
sea level
transgression
history
Northern Ireland
Sea-level Change
Belfast
Sea Level
seismic stratigraphy
lowstand
Younger Dryas
deglaciation
rheology
meltwater
ice sheet
Holocene
sediment
History

Keywords

  • post-glacial relative sea-level change
  • high-resolution seismics
  • glacio-isostatic adjustment (GIA)
  • stillstand/slowstand
  • Younger Dryas

Cite this

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title = "Late Quaternary sea-level change and evolution of Belfast Lough, Northern Ireland: new offshore evidence and implications for sea-level reconstruction",
abstract = "The interplay of eustatic and isostatic factors causes complex relative sea-level (RSL) histories, particularly in paraglacial settings. In this context the past record of RSL is important in understanding ice-sheet history, earth rheology and resulting glacio-isostatic adjustment. Field data to develop sea-level reconstructions are often limited to shallow depths and uncertainty exists as to the veracity of modelled sea-level curves. We use seismic stratigraphy, 39 vibrocores and 26 radiocarbon dates to investigate the deglacial history of Belfast Lough, Northern Ireland, and reconstruct past RSL. A typical sequence of till, glacimarine and Holocene sediments is preserved. Two sea-level lowstands (both max. −40 m) are recorded at c. 13.5 and 11.5k cal a bp. Each is followed by a rapid transgression and subsequent periods of RSL stability. The first transgression coincides temporally with a late stage of Meltwater Pulse 1a and the RSL stability occurred between c. 13.0 and c. 12.2k cal a bp (Younger Dryas). The second still/slowstand occurred between c. 10.3 and c. 11.5k cal a bp. Our data provide constraints on the direction and timing of RSL change during deglaciation. Application of the Depth of Closure concept adds an error term to sea-level reconstructions based on seismic stratigraphic reconstructions.",
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Late Quaternary sea-level change and evolution of Belfast Lough, Northern Ireland : new offshore evidence and implications for sea-level reconstruction. / Plets, Ruth; Callard, Louise; Cooper, Andrew; Kelley, J. T.; Belknap, Daniel; Edwards, Robin; Long, Antony; Quinn, Rory; Jackson, DWT.

In: Journal of Quaternary Science, Vol. 34, No. 4-5, 28.06.2019, p. 285-298.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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AU - Quinn, Rory

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