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Research articles

ScienceAsia 37 (2011): 262-267 |doi: 10.2306/scienceasia1513-1874.2011.37.262

Stalagmite grey level as a proxy of the palaeoclimate in northwestern Thailand

Chotika Muangsonga,b, Nathsuda Pumijumnonga,*, Binggui Caic,d, Ming Tanc

ABSTRACT:     Stalagmite grey level provides limited information about palaeoclima as its interpretation depends on numerous factors. One of the best approaches entails calibrating grey level sequences with instrumental climate data. In this study, grey level variation covering a 105-year span was analysed in a lamina stalagmite, known as Namjang1 (NJ1), from Namjang cave (98° 12′ 12′′ E, 19° 40′ 30′′ N), in north-western Thailand. The grey level time series positively correlated with the five-year running average of rainfall in October (r=0.22, p<0.05), the five-year running average of ratio of August to October to May to July rainfall (r=0.38, p<0.01), and the five-year running average of ratio of August to October and May to October rainfall (r=0.35, p<0.01). This indicates that the calibrated grey level record can provide a high resolution proxy of rainfall in the late monsoon season. The observed correlation between grey level and rainfall in the late monsoon season is consistent with our previous study on the same stalagmite that used δ18O and growth rate parameters (Cai B, Pumijumnong N, Tan M, Muangsong C, Kong X, Jiang X, Nan S, J Geophys Res, 115, D21104), which further demonstrates that this stalagmite is a robust proxy of rainfall in the late monsoon season in north-western Thailand.

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a Faculty of Environment and Resource Studies, Mahidol University, Nakhon Pathom 73170, Thailand
b Faculty of Earth Sciences, China University of Geosciences, Wuhan 430074, China
c Key Laboratory of Cenozoic Geology Environment, Institute of Geology and Geophysics, Chinese Academy of Science, Beijing 100029, China
d National Research Centre for Geoanalysis, Beijing 100037, China

* Corresponding author, E-mail: grnpm@mahidol.ac.th

Received 10 Jun 2010, Accepted 27 May 2011