Climate Dynamics

, Volume 25, Issue 2–3, pp 329–336 | Cite as

Distinct modes of bidecadal and multidecadal variability in a climate reconstruction of the last centuries from a South Pacific coral

  • Mihai DimaEmail author
  • Thomas Felis
  • Gerrit Lohmann
  • Norel Rimbu


The Rarotonga coral Sr/Ca time series (Linsley et al. in Science 290:1145–1148, 2000) provides a near-monthly resolved proxy record of South Pacific climate variability over the last ~300 years. Here we show that two distinct interdecadal, quasi-periodic time components with periods of ~80 and ~25 years can be identified in this time series by Singular Spectrum Analysis. Their associated spatial patterns in the global sea surface temperature (SST) field show notable differences. Whereas the multidecadal component is associated with a global SST pattern that was recently associated with solar forcing on multidecadal timescales, the bidecadal component is associated with a well known pattern of Pacific decadal to interdecadal SST variability.


Empirical Orthogonal Function Singular Spectrum Analysis Empirical Orthogonal Function Analysis Interdecadal Variability Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation 
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.



We thank B.K. Linsley for making the Rarotonga coral Sr/Ca data available through the World Data Center for Paleoclimatology and for providing a manuscript prior to publication, and two anonymous reviewers for constructive comments that significantly improved the manuscript. MD acknowledges support of the ‘Access to Research Infrastructures’ program of the European Commission through ‘Paleostudies’ at Bremen University and of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. Funded by Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung through DEKLIM and by Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft through DFG-Research Center for Ocean Margins at Bremen University, contribution No. RCOM0281 and AWI-4711.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mihai Dima
    • 1
    • 3
    Email author
  • Thomas Felis
    • 2
  • Gerrit Lohmann
    • 3
  • Norel Rimbu
    • 1
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of GeosciencesUniversity of BremenBremenGermany
  2. 2.DFG-Research Center for Ocean MarginsUniversity of BremenBremenGermany
  3. 3.Alfred Wegener-Institute for Polar and Marine ResearchBremerhavenGermany

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