Climate Dynamics

, Volume 52, Issue 5–6, pp 3741–3757 | Cite as

Reconstructing the western boundary variability of the Western Pacific Subtropical High over the past 200 years via Chinese cave oxygen isotope records

  • Jingyao Zhao
  • Hai ChengEmail author
  • Yan Yang
  • Liangcheng Tan
  • Christoph Spötl
  • Youfeng Ning
  • Haiwei Zhang
  • Xing Cheng
  • Zhe Sun
  • Xianglei Li
  • Hanying Li
  • Wen Liu
  • R. Lawrence Edwards


Cave oxygen isotope (δ18O) records have been important in characterizing Asian Monsoon variations on a wide range of timescales. The climatic significance of the δ18O proxy of the cave records and its main control factors, however, remain hotly debated, especially with respect to annual to decadal timescales. In particular, while the spatial and intensity variations of the Western Pacific Subtropical High (WPSH) affects the East Asian Monsoon remarkably on annual to decadal timescales, cave records up to present do not show clear evidence of the WPSH signal. Here we report a new high-resolution (average of 1.5 months) δ18O record from Dongshiya Cave, Qinling Mountain, central China. The region is highly sensitive to variations in the position of the WPSH western boundary, which in turn regulates the alternation of dominant moisture sources between the proximal Pacific Ocean and the remote Indian Ocean. Together with another cave record near the WPSH western boundary, we established a new index to reconstruct variations of the WPSH western boundary over the past 200 years. Our new data revealed two significant periodicities, 12 and 2–7 years respectively, that can be causally linked to solar and ENSO variances correspondingly.


Speleothem Oxygen isotopes Asian Monsoon WPSH 



We thank Jie Cao of School of Resource Environment and Earth Science, University of Yunnan, for his constructive comments and thank Tingyong Li of School of Geography Sciences, Southwest University, and Xiuyang Jiang, College of Geography Sciences, Fujian Normal University, for sharing their stalagmite δ18O data. This study was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC) (41731174, 41672160, 41761144069 and 41561144003) and US NSF Grants 1702816. We would also like to thank three anonymous reviewers for their constructive comments.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jingyao Zhao
    • 1
  • Hai Cheng
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Yan Yang
    • 3
  • Liangcheng Tan
    • 1
    • 4
  • Christoph Spötl
    • 5
  • Youfeng Ning
    • 1
  • Haiwei Zhang
    • 1
  • Xing Cheng
    • 4
  • Zhe Sun
    • 3
  • Xianglei Li
    • 1
  • Hanying Li
    • 1
  • Wen Liu
    • 6
  • R. Lawrence Edwards
    • 2
  1. 1.Institute of Global Environmental ChangeXi’an Jiaotong UniversityXi’anChina
  2. 2.Department of Earth SciencesUniversity of MinnesotaMinneapolisUSA
  3. 3.School of Geographical SciencesSouthwest UniversityChongqingChina
  4. 4.State Key Laboratory of Loess and Quaternary Geology, Institute of Earth EnvironmentChinese Academy of SciencesXi’anChina
  5. 5.Institute of GeologyUniversity of InnsbruckInnsbruckAustria
  6. 6.Shandong Provincial Geo-mineral Engineer Exploration InstituteJinanChina

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