Most publications claim that a massive northern hemisphere glaciation started around 3 Ma. In the case of Greenland there are evidences that the large ice sheet existed prior to this period. New seismic data off East Greenland combined with results from ODP legs indicate a pronounced middle Miocene unconformity along the entire shelf between 72°N and 80°N. The stratigraphic interpretation does not allow to distinguish between glacial and non-glacial sediments. However, the change in depositional style to strongly prograding units might be an indication for the influence of glaciers on the sedimentation of the East Greenland shelf. The unconformity might be a consequence of sea level changes, glacial erosion or both.Glacial sequences were analysed along the entire East Greenland margin and show differences between north and south. A strong prograding character of glacial sediments is visible north of the Jan-Mayen Fracture zone. Dominating aggradational sequences south of 72°N let assume the glaciation and glacial erosion was more massive in the north. By means of the varying geometry of glacial sediments on the shelf we can subdivide the sediments into different layers and ages. Results from detailed analyses of glacial sediments along the East Greenland margin will be introduced.
Helmholtz Research Programs > MARCOPOLI (2004-2008) > MAR2-Palaeo Climate Mechanisms and Variability