Abrupt climate change due to mode switches
circulation modes of the glacial Atlantic
||Schematic representation of three
modes of operation of the climate system during the Last Ice
The large Earth in the centre shows the stable
"stadial") climate state prevailing during most of the Ice Age.
For a more detailed description of the three
modes, see our
paper: Ganopolski, A. and S.
2001: Simulation of rapid glacial climate changes in a coupled climate
model. Nature, 409, 153-158.
Below it is the situation during a warm
(D/O) event, in which the Atlantic conveyor belt temporarily advances
the Nordic Seas and a strong warm anomaly develops there
The upper globe shows climate during a Heinrich
with collapsed conveyor belt and a cold anomaly over the mid-latitude
The continental ice cover shown is the
of Peltier, prescribed as a boundary condition in the model simulations.
A more popular description is found in our press
This paper is also discussed in a Nature
News & Views by Didier Paillard.
You can watch
a movie of
these events: a D/O event followed by a Heinrich event and another D/O
Mode switches could be caused by an
called 'stochastic resonance'. This is analysed in: Ganopolski,
A. and S. Rahmstorf, 2001: Abrupt glacial climate changes due to
resonance. Phys. Rev. Let., in press.