New tephrostratigraphical and tephrochronological data on a thick tephra layer from the Wood Bay area (Antarctica)

Tephra in marine sequences, similarly to those recovered in ice archives, represent invaluable isochrons for dating and correlating the records and the synchronization of climate proxy records. These correlations are fundamental for understanding the nature of connections and coupling processes between atmospheric, icesheets, ocean dynamics, marine sedimentary systems and climate changes. This paper reports the results of tephrostratigraphy and tephrochronology studies carried out on a thick tephra layer identified in four sediment cores recovered from the Wood Bay area (Aviator basin) in the Ross Sea (Antarctica). The study includes textural, mineralogical and geochemical information, and geochronological constraints on the eruption deposits, using multicollector 40Ar-39Ar data for the tephra and 14C dates from the host sediments. Results strongly suggests that the Aviator Tephra unequivocally represent the product of a large-magnitude, possibly caldera-forming, early-Holocene (~11 ka) eruption in northern Victoria Land. It constitutes a potential marker for time-stratigraphic correlation between marine archives of the Ross Sea, thus facilitating the synchronization of marine archives with continental ice Archives.

Reference: Di Roberto A., P.G. Albert P.G., Colizza E., Del Carlo P., Di Vincenzo G., Gallerani A., Giglio F., Kuhn G., Macrì P., Manning C.J., R. Melis R., Miserocchi S., Scateni B., Smith V.C., Torricella F., Winkler A., 2020. Evidence for a large-magnitude Holocene eruption of Mount Rittmann (Antarctica): A volcanological reconstruction using the marine tephra record. Quaternary Science Reviews, 250, 106629.

The work is available at the link:

 For further information please contact Gianfranco Di Vincenzo, CNR-IGG (gianfranco.divincenzo(at)igg.cnr(dot)it).