Geo-Marine Letters

, Volume 23, Issue 1, pp 64–71 | Cite as

A densely sampled core and climate variable aliasing

  • C. Wunsch
  • D. E. Gunn


Undersampled records are susceptible to aliasing, in which a high frequency appears incorrectly as a lower one. We study the sampling requirements in a core taken from Rockall Trough using bulk density, P-wave velocity, and magnetic susceptibility as measured on an automated system. At 2-cm spacing (approximately 33 years in this core), all variables show a characteristic red-noise behavior, but with a spectral slope that is sufficiently weak so that significant aliasing appears to be present. P-wave velocity shows the largest potential corruption, probably owing to the weaker spatial averaging present in the sensor. Approximately 50% of the apparent low-frequency energy is aliased in all variables at some frequencies in both quiet and active regions of the record. In this core, a sampling interval of 0.2 cm appears to be "safe" in both active and quiet portions of the core, aliasing little or no energy, except in the P-wave record. For cores of different duration, sampling interval, and measurement type, the considerations will be identical, the importance of the problem depending directly upon the shape of the overall spectrum describing the entire frequency (wavenumber) range of physical variability.


Magnetic Susceptibility Spatial Average Aliasing Rockall Trough Power Density Spectral Estimate 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This work was begun while C. Wunsch was a visitor at the Southampton Oceanography Centre and at University College, London. Thanks are owed to E.J.W. Jones for stimulating this study. P. Huybers made some helpful comments.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary SciencesMassachusetts Institute of TechnologyCambridgeUSA
  2. 2.Challenger Division for Seafloor ProcessesSouthampton Oceanography CentreSouthamptonUK

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