Grant: $281,109 - National Science Foundation - Jun. 4, 2009
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Award Description: Observations of decadal-to-multidecadal climate variability challenge an understanding of climate dynamics. The North Pacific region reflects some of the most promininent expressions of such variability, yet an understanding of it remains in its infancy. Instrumental records from the North Pacific are too short, and many availabale paleoclimate proxy records are at too low resolutions, or too complex in interpretation, to serve as quantitative target data sets for model-based hypothesis testing or develoment of theory. Ice core records of snow accumulation have great potential to contribute to improved understanding of Norht Pacific climate variability, on timescales ranging from decadal to centennial. We propose to obtain new ice core accumulation records from Combatant Col, Mt. Waddington, in southwestern British Columbia (BC), Canada. In addition to obtaining new ice core data, we will work with WC2N researchers to use state-of-the-art climaate downscaling results to investigate relationships between the local ice core accumulation records and variability in the large-scale atmospheric circulation. The Combatant Col record, in combination with other existing records of precipitaation variability along the western margin of North America, will be used to develop an updated and improved reconstruction of precipitation variability in this region over the last 200-1000 years, to address fundamental questions about Pacific decadal scale variability. The proposed research integrates both research and educational components to further the synthesis of paleoclimate data with modern climate observations and modeling. The accumulation time series we produce will serve as an important validation target for high resolution climate modeling and climate downscaling, and as input for the development of paleoclimate data assimilation methods.
Project Description: The overarching goal of our grant is to contribute to the characterization and understanding of past Pacific climate variability, with a focus on decadal to multi-decadal timescale variability in precipitation. We will make this contribution by 1) obtaining and analyzing ice cores from Combatant Col, British Columbia, covering the last 200-1000 years, 2) using these records to establish a time series of ice annual layer thickness, 3) using ice flow modeling to convert this record into a record of snow accumulation variability; 4) investigating the relationship between large-scale atmospheric circulation and snow accumulation at this and other ice core sites and 5) using our results to develop a reconstruction of past western North American precipitation variability, to improve overall understanding of decadal-scale climate variability in this region.
Jobs Summary: None to report (Total jobs reported: 0)
Project Status: Less Than 50% Completed
This award's data was last updated on Jun. 4, 2009. Help expand these official descriptions using the wiki below.