Articles | Volume 17, issue 5
Research article
13 Oct 2010
Research article |  | 13 Oct 2010

A simple conceptual model to interpret the 100 000 years dynamics of paleo-climate records

C. S. Quiroga Lombard, P. Balenzuela, H. Braun, and D. R. Chialvo

Abstract. Spectral analyses performed on records of cosmogenic nuclides reveal a group of dominant spectral components during the Holocene period. Only a few of them are related to known solar cycles, i.e., the De Vries/Suess, Gleissberg and Hallstatt cycles. The origin of the others remains uncertain. On the other hand, time series of North Atlantic atmospheric/sea surface temperatures during the last ice age display the existence of repeated large-scale warming events, called Dansgaard-Oeschger (DO) events, spaced around multiples of 1470 years. The De Vries/Suess and Gleissberg cycles with periods close to 1470/7 (~210) and 1470/17 (~86.5) years have been proposed to explain these observations. In this work we found that a conceptual bistable model forced with the De Vries/Suess and Gleissberg cycles plus noise displays a group of dominant frequencies similar to those obtained in the Fourier spectra from paleo-climate during the Holocene. Moreover, we show that simply changing the noise amplitude in the model we obtain similar power spectra to those corresponding to GISP2 δ18O (Greenland Ice Sheet Project 2) during the last ice age. These results give a general dynamical framework which allows us to interpret the main characteristic of paleoclimate records from the last 100 000 years.