Connections between pleistocene millennial climate and sediment variability in the pacific sub-arctic

The 2009 Integrated Ocean Drilling Program Expedition 323 (Exp 323) to the Bering Sea recovered the first continuous sediment cores of the Pleistocene glacial cycles from sites throughout the marginal sea. Sediments in this region are dominated by diatom ooze showing different degrees of preservation and secondarily clay minerals and coarser siliciclastic material. Down core lithologic variability is prominent at both glacial/interglacial and millennial scales, which is reflected by variability in physical properties (e.g. bulk density). This thesis will characterize the lithologic expressions of the various scales of climate events from sediment cores from both the open ocean and ocean margin environments in the Bering Sea. The sedimentologic analysis uses an improved smear slide method combined with other independent methods to characterize the sediment (e.g., laser particle size analysis, scanning electron microscopy, physical properties). This novel methodological approach offers new insights on the links between changes in sedimentation and oceanography at different scales of climate variability in the Bering Sea and potentially in other similar high latitude basins.