NAO signal recorded in the stable isotopes of Greenland ice cores

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Abstract

[1] The winter δ18O signal is extracted from 7 Greenland ice cores covering the past ∼700 years. To filter out noise and local variations in the 7 isotope records a principal component analysis is carried out on the ice core data. A comparison between the time series of the first principal component (PC1) with 67 years of winter (December to March) temperature measurements from 3 southern Greenland synoptic stations shows highly significant correlations. Southern Greenland winter temperatures are known to be greatly influenced by the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO). A good proxy for southern Greenland temperatures is therefore expected to reveal at least parts of the NAO signal. It is shown that the PC1 time series indeed is significantly correlated to the NAO during the winter months. The inclusion of ice core winter season δ18O time series in future multiproxy NAO reconstructions is therefore recommended.

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