Encyclopedia of Paleoclimatology and Ancient Environments

2009 Edition
| Editors: Vivien Gornitz

Monsoons: Pre-Quaternary

  • Pinxian Wang
  • Qianyu Li
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-4411-3_144

Monsoon circulation has existed throughout geological history whenever the tropics were occupied by both land and sea. Pre-Quaternary monsoons, however, are poorly understood because paleo-monsoon studies have been heavily biased toward variations of the Quaternary monsoon on the orbital and suborbital time scales. Pre-Quaternary monsoon systems are often considered over a much longer time span, so they show more significant variations in responding to tectonically-induced geographic and topographic changes. Pre-Quaternary monsoons have so far only sporadically been mentioned in the literature for most of the geological periods, except for two better studied intervals: the Permian and Triassic where a “megamonsoon” developed on the megacontinent Pangaea, and the late Cenozoic, which led to the establishment of the modern monsoon system.

Megamonsoon of the megacontinent

As monsoons are caused by land-sea contrast in the heating rate, the ideal conditions for a monsoon system to develop...
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© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Pinxian Wang
  • Qianyu Li

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