The Indian Summer Monsoon from a Speleothem δ18O Perspective—A Review

Kaushal, Nikita, Breitenbach, Sebastian, Lechleitner, Franziska A., Sinha, Ashish, Tewari, Vinod C., Ahmad, Syed Masood, Berkelhammer, Max, Band, Shraddha, Yadava, Madhusudan, Ramesh, Rengaswamy and Henderson, Gideon M. (2018) The Indian Summer Monsoon from a Speleothem δ18O Perspective—A Review. Quaternary, 1 (3). p. 29. ISSN 2571-550X

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As one of the most prominent seasonally recurring atmospheric circulation patterns, the Asian summer monsoon (ASM) plays a vital role for the life and livelihood of about one-third of the global population. Changes in the strength and seasonality of the ASM significantly affect the ASM region, yet the drivers of change and the varied regional responses of the ASM are not well understood. In the last two decades, there were a number of studies reconstructing the ASM using stalagmite-based proxies such as oxygen isotopes (δ18O). Such reconstructions allow examination of ASM drivers and responses, increasing monsoon predictability. In this review paper, we focus on stalagmite δ18O records from India at the proximal end of the ASM region. Indian stalagmite δ18O records show well-dated, high-amplitude changes in response to the dominant drivers of the ASM on orbital to multi-centennial timescales, and indicate the magnitude of monsoon variability in response to these drivers. We examine Indian stalagmite records collated in the Speleothem Isotope Synthesis and AnaLysis version 1 (SISAL_v1) database ( and support the database with a summary of record quality and regional climatic interpretations of the δ18O record during different climate states. We highlight current debates and suggest the most useful time periods (climatic events) and locations for further work using tools such as data-model comparisons, spectral analysis methods, multi-proxy investigations, and monitoring.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: speleothem, oxygen isotopes, monsoon, paleoclimate, India, SISAL, Indian summer monsoon (ISM), ASM
Subjects: F600 Geology
F700 Ocean Sciences
F800 Physical and Terrestrial Geographical and Environmental Sciences
F900 Others in Physical Sciences
Department: Faculties > Engineering and Environment > Geography and Environmental Sciences
Depositing User: Rachel Branson
Date Deposited: 20 Feb 2020 12:40
Last Modified: 31 Jul 2021 19:47

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