Collaborative Research: Holocene Climatic Changes in the Mongolian Plateau

Project Details


The aim of this collaborative award is to produce Holocene high-resolution records of climate variability across the Mongolian Plateau over the past 2,000 years. The Mongolian Plateau, a region of steep climatic gradients and distinctively zoned vegetation, is influenced by three circulation systems: the Westerlies, the Asian Summer Monsoon, and the Winter Monsoon. Changes in these circulation systems are intricately linked to large-scale oscillations in the global climate system, (i.e., El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO), North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), and North Pacific Oscillation (NPO)).

The research will involve a combination of geophysical proxies (i.e., magnetic granulometry, grain size, gray scale), geochemical proxies (i.e., iron geochemistry, carbon isotopes of organic matter and carbonate), and geobiological proxies (i.e., pollen, diatoms, phytoliths, charcoal) to examine the question of whether the Middle Holocene Climatic Optimum was synchronous across Central Asia. The researchers will use data from existing lacustrine cores and loess/paleosol sections as well as drilling two lakes in the region (i.e., Qigai Nuur, Ulaal Nuur) to develop new data.

This award will enable the collaboration of American scientists with an international group of scientists from developing countries (i.e., China and Mongolia) to enhance partnerships in a global network of paleoclimate research. The research will help establish collaborations among international institutions as well as promote undergraduate and graduate education in US and non-US institutions.

Effective start/end date1/07/0430/06/07


  • National Science Foundation: $147,130.00


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