Wessels, Martin; Fütterer, Dieter K; Grobe, Hannes (1989): Sedimentology on cores off Filchner Shelf Ice, Weddell Sea, Antarctica. doi:10.1594/PANGAEA.701301, Supplement to:Wessels, Martin (1989): Sedimentationsprozesse an der Filchner Schelfeiskante, Antarktis. Diploma Thesis, Institut und Museum für Geologie und Paläontologie der Georg-August-Universität zu Göttingen (in Zusammenarbeit mit dem Alfred-Wegener-Institut), 126 pp, hdl:10013/epic.30827.d001
The sediments of 14 box cores and 7 gravity cores, mainly taken directly in front of the Filchner(-Ronne) ice shelf northwest of Berkner Island (Weddell Sea), allowed to distinguish six sediment types. On the one hand,the retreat of the at first grounded and then floated ice from the last glacial maximum is documented. On the other hand,the sediments give an insight into extensive Holocene sediment deposition and remobilization northwest of Berkner Island.
The ortho till was deposited directly by the grounded ice sheet and is lacking any marine influence. After floating of the ice shelf, partly very weIl stratified, partly unstratified, non-bioturbated paratill is deposited beneath the ice shelf. Lack of IRD-content in the paratill immediately above the orthotill indicates freezing at the bottom of the ice, at least for a short period after the ice became afloat. The orthotill and paratill contain small amounts of fragmented Tertiary diatoms, which allow the conclusion, that glacial-marine sediments in the accumulation area of the Ronne ice shelf will be eroded and later deposited by ice in the investigation area.
Starting of bioturbation and therefore change in sedimentation from paratill to bioturbated paratill,is caused by the retreat of the ice shelf to its actual position. Isostatic uplift of the sea-bed after the Ice Age causes minor water depths with higher current velocities. The fine-fraction is eroding and mean particle-size will increase. Maybe, also isostatic uplift is responsible for repeated great advances of the floated ice shelf as shown in an erosional horizon in some cores containing bioturbated paratill.
Postglacial sediment-thicknesses exceed 3 m. Assuming floating of the ice 15.000 YBP, accumulation rates reach nearly 20cm/lOOO years. Following the theories about sediment input in front of wide ice shelves, this was not expected. In the shallower water depths of Berkner Bank, the oscillations of the ice shelf are recorded in the sediments. Sorting and redistribution by high current velocities from beneath the ice up to the calving line, lead to the deposition of the weIl to very weIl sorted sandy till. In front of the calving line the finer fraction will settle down. Remobilization is possible by bioturbation and increasing current-velocity. According to the intensity of mixing of the sandy till with the fine fraction, modified till or muddy till results.