A connection between geomagnetic intensity and climatic anomalies recorded in Chinese loess

Jiasheng Chen*, Xiuming Liu

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    1 Citation (Scopus)


    Quaternary climate change recorded by Chinese loess closely parallels fluctuations in the benthic δ18O record. However, there are also some unique climate anomalies in and around the Asian inland Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP), where the climate was unusually humid during MIS 3 and 13, and extremely cold during MIS 22 and 38. Most explanations involve modifications to atmospheric circulation, but there is no single answer for such anomalies. Here, we compare relative geomagnetic paleointensity with benthic δ18O, and find that all anomalies occur when paleointensity negatively correlates with δ18O. The reason for this is not yet clear. Milankovitch theory fundamentally explains Quaternary climatic cycles by external forcing. Our results suggest that changes in the Earth's deep interior, especially geomagnetic field intensity, may play a significant role in some non-linear climate changes in mid-latitude long-term Quaternary climate change. We are currently pursuing the idea that fluctuations in global climatic background (δ18O record) and cosmic ray influx, which is controlled by the strength of the geomagnetic field, may from time to time act in concert to create regional anomalies such as those seen on the CLP.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)151-155
    Number of pages5
    JournalQuaternary International
    Publication statusPublished - 18 Apr 2016


    • Chinese loess
    • Climate anomalies
    • Geomagnetic intensity
    • Non-linear climate changes


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