A Speleothem Proxy Record for Tropical Cyclone Events: Preliminary Results

EPA Grant Number: U915818
Title: A Speleothem Proxy Record for Tropical Cyclone Events: Preliminary Results
Investigators: Frappier, Amy E.
Institution: University of New Hampshire - Main Campus
EPA Project Officer: Michaud, Jayne
Project Period: August 1, 2000 through August 1, 2002
Project Amount: $63,750
RFA: STAR Graduate Fellowships (2000) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Fellowship - Geology , Academic Fellowships , Ecological Indicators/Assessment/Restoration


The objective of this research is to test a potential geologic proxy record for tropical cyclone precipitation events, utilizing very high-resolution stable isotopic analyses of speleothem calcite (cave mineral deposits).


Several stalagmites will be collected from a single cave in Cayo District, Belize for 210-Pb dating and stable isotopic analyses. Using a microdrill system, the researchers expect to recover monthly to weekly sampling resolution over the past 2 decades. The speleothem isotopic data will be correlated with local precipitation records and known tropical cyclone events during the same period to determine whether the speleothems preserve measureable isotopic evidence of individual tropical cyclone event. Microsampling and isotopic analyses will be performed.

Expected Results:

The stalagmites collected will provide data to show past tropical cyclone events.

Supplemental Keywords:

stable isotope, d18O, speleothem, stalagmite, karst, hydrology, groundwater, precipitation, tropical cyclone, hurricane, paleoclimate, global climate, coast, hazard, paleotempestology, North Atlantic, Caribbean, Belize, Yucatan., RFA, Scientific Discipline, Geographic Area, Ecosystem Protection/Environmental Exposure & Risk, Ecosystem/Assessment/Indicators, Ecosystem Protection, Geochemistry, Ecological Effects - Environmental Exposure & Risk, Ecology and Ecosystems, International, Geology, Ecological Indicators, biogeochemical indicators, ecosystem assessment, climate, Belize, ecosystem effects, cyclone events, climate impacts, ecological assessment, ecological impacts, isotopic analysis, precipitation measurement, ecosystem response , ecological research, environmental impact

Progress and Final Reports:

  • 2001
  • Final