EGU General Assembly 2023
© Author(s) 2023. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Astronomically-paced changes in paleoproductivity, winnowing, and mineral flux over Broken Ridge (Indian Ocean) since the Early Miocene

Jing Lyu1, Sofía Bar­ra­gán-Mon­til­la2, Gerald Auer3, Or Bialik1, Beth Christensen4, and David De Vleeschouwer1
Jing Lyu et al.
  • 1Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität (WWU) Münster, Geology and Paleontology , Germany
  • 2MARUM–Center for Marine Environmental Sciences, University of Bremen, Bremen, Germany
  • 3Institute of Earth Sciences (Geology and Paleontology), University of Graz, Graz, Austria
  • 4Department of Environmental Science, School of Earth and Environment, Rowan University, Glassboro, NJ, USA

Earth’s climate during the Neogene period changed in several steps from a planet with unipolar ice sheets to today’s bipolar configuration. Yet, time-continuous and well-preserved sedimentary archives from this time interval are scarce. This is especially true for those records that can be used for tracing the role of astronomical climate forcing. Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Site 752 was drilled on Broken Ridge (Indian Ocean) and provides a time-continuous sedimentation history since the early Miocene in its upper portion.  To date, no astronomical-scale paleoclimate research has been conducted on this legacy ODP site. Here, we use X-ray fluorescence (XRF) core scanning data and benthic foraminifera (BF) taxonomic and quantitative analyses to reconstruct the paleoceanographic changes in the Indian Ocean since 23 Ma. Productivity-related elements from the XRF dataset, show higher productivity during the early Miocene and late Pliocene/early Pleistocene. Moreover, we found strong 405-kyr and ~110-kyr eccentricity imprints in the spectral analysis result of this XRF-derived paleoproductivity proxy. Although the precession signal is also quite remarkable in the spectral analysis results, the 4-cm resolution may not be adequate to further test the precession contribution. Bottom water oxygenation reconstructed using BF, suggest no oxygen minimum zone conditions for the late Miocene on site 752. Dissolved oxygen concentrations (DOC) indicate low oxic conditions (⁓ 2 ml/L) during this time, and relatively low stress species distribution (< 32%) along with abundant oxic species like H. boueana, C. mundulus, L. pauperata and Gyroidinoides spp. suggest predominantly high oxic conditions during the late Miocene (DOC > 2 ml/L). Meanwhile, the grain size (> 425µm) record shows an increasing trend at ~5 Ma, which indicates more current winnowing. Therefore, we argue that the drop in Mn is the result of the increase in the current winnowing, instead of the OMZ expansion. On the other hand, high-amplitude changes in Fe content from the lower Miocene to the middle Miocene, cannot be explained by eolian input, suggesting the source might be the neighbor-distanced Amsterdam-St. Paul hot spot. The source of Fe might be the neighbor-distanced Amsterdam-St. Paul hot spot. We conclude that the legacy ODP Site 752 constitutes an excellent paleoceanographic archive that allows us to reconstruct Indian Ocean dynamics since the early Miocene. New drillings on Broken Ridge with state-of-the-art scientific ocean drilling techniques will provide more detailed information and be highly beneficial for paleoclimatic and paleoceanographic research.

How to cite: Lyu, J., Bar­ra­gán-Mon­til­la, S., Auer, G., Bialik, O., Christensen, B., and De Vleeschouwer, D.: Astronomically-paced changes in paleoproductivity, winnowing, and mineral flux over Broken Ridge (Indian Ocean) since the Early Miocene, EGU General Assembly 2023, Vienna, Austria, 24–28 Apr 2023, EGU23-5655,, 2023.