New findings regarding the Saksunarvatn Ash in Germany


Correspondence: C. W. F. Bramham-Law, as above.



The Saksunarvatn Ash is an important tephra layer for the correlation of Early Holocene environmental records in northern Europe, the North Atlantic and Greenland. The Saksunarvatn Ash is believed to have been produced by eruptions of the Grimsvötn volcanic system ∼10.3 ka BP, which had two axes of dispersal, one plume in a north-west direction over northern Iceland and into Greenland, and a second southerly plume covering the Faroe Isles, Shetland Isles, western Norway and northern Germany. Here we present data from Potremser Moor, north-east Germany, extending the easterly margin of the ash fallout zone. We also present single grain trace element data from the type site at Saksunarvatn as well as from Potremser Moor. The Saksunarvatn Ash is indistinguishable between Potremser Moor and Saksunarvatn, suggesting the two tephras were produced by the same eruption. Trace element compositions from both sites are similar to data from the North Atlantic marine core (LINK 14:185), but different from the GRIP ice core (GRIP 1528.61 m), indicating that the south-east and north-west plumes may have arisen from separate eruption events. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.