The Cyclostratigraphy Intercomparison Project (CIP): consistency, merits and pitfalls

Matthias Sinnesael, David De Vleeschouwer, Christian Zeeden, Sietske J. Batenburg, Anne Christine Da Silva, Niels J. de Winter, Jaume Dinarès-Turell, Anna Joy Drury, Gabriele Gambacorta, Frederik J. Hilgen, Linda A. Hinnov, Alexander J.L. Hudson, David B. Kemp, Margriet L. Lantink, Jiří Laurin, Mingsong Li, Diederik Liebrand, Chao Ma, Stephen R. Meyers, Johannes MonkenbuschAlessandro Montanari, Theresa Nohl, Heiko Pälike, Damien Pas, Micha Ruhl, Nicolas Thibault, Maximilian Vahlenkamp, Luis Valero, Sébastien Wouters, Huaichun Wu, Philippe Claeys

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

Cyclostratigraphy is an important tool for understanding astronomical climate forcing and reading geological time in sedimentary sequences, provided that an imprint of insolation variations caused by Earth's orbital eccentricity, obliquity and/or precession is preserved (Milankovitch forcing). Numerous stratigraphic and paleoclimate studies have applied cyclostratigraphy, but the robustness of the methodology and its dependence on the investigator have not been systematically evaluated. We developed the Cyclostratigraphy Intercomparison Project (CIP) to assess the robustness of cyclostratigraphic methods using an experimental design of three artificial cyclostratigraphic case studies with known input parameters. Each case study is designed to address specific challenges that are relevant to cyclostratigraphy. Case 1 represents an offshore research vessel environment, as only a drill-core photo and the approximate position of a late Miocene stage boundary are available for analysis. In Case 2, the Pleistocene proxy record displays clear nonlinear cyclical patterns and the interpretation is complicated by the presence of a hiatus. Case 3 represents a Late Devonian proxy record with a low signal-to-noise ratio with no specific theoretical astronomical solution available for this age. Each case was analyzed by a test group of 17-20 participants, with varying experience levels, methodological preferences and dedicated analysis time. During the CIP 2018 meeting in Brussels, Belgium, the ensuing analyses and discussion demonstrated that most participants did not arrive at a perfect solution, which may be partly explained by the limited amount of time spent on the exercises (∼4.5 hours per case). However, in all three cases, the median solution of all submitted analyses accurately approached the correct result and several participants obtained the exact correct answers. Interestingly, systematically better performances were obtained for cases that represented the data type and stratigraphic age that were closest to the individual participants’ experience. This experiment demonstrates that cyclostratigraphy is a powerful tool for deciphering time in sedimentary successions and, importantly, that it is a trainable skill. Finally, we emphasize the importance of an integrated stratigraphic approach and provide flexible guidelines on what good practices in cyclostratigraphy should include. Our case studies provide valuable insight into current common practices in cyclostratigraphy, their potential merits and pitfalls. Our work does not provide a quantitative measure of reliability and uncertainty of cyclostratigraphy, but rather constitutes a starting point for further discussions on how to move the maturing field of cyclostratigraphy forward.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number102965
JournalEarth-Science Reviews
Volume199
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2019

Fingerprint

cyclostratigraphy
project
research vessel
climate forcing
geological time
obliquity
hiatus
precession
insolation
sedimentary sequence
paleoclimate
eccentricity
experimental design
signal-to-noise ratio
Miocene

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

Cite this

Sinnesael, M., De Vleeschouwer, D., Zeeden, C., Batenburg, S. J., Da Silva, A. C., de Winter, N. J., ... Claeys, P. (2019). The Cyclostratigraphy Intercomparison Project (CIP): consistency, merits and pitfalls. Earth-Science Reviews, 199, [102965]. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.earscirev.2019.102965
Sinnesael, Matthias ; De Vleeschouwer, David ; Zeeden, Christian ; Batenburg, Sietske J. ; Da Silva, Anne Christine ; de Winter, Niels J. ; Dinarès-Turell, Jaume ; Drury, Anna Joy ; Gambacorta, Gabriele ; Hilgen, Frederik J. ; Hinnov, Linda A. ; Hudson, Alexander J.L. ; Kemp, David B. ; Lantink, Margriet L. ; Laurin, Jiří ; Li, Mingsong ; Liebrand, Diederik ; Ma, Chao ; Meyers, Stephen R. ; Monkenbusch, Johannes ; Montanari, Alessandro ; Nohl, Theresa ; Pälike, Heiko ; Pas, Damien ; Ruhl, Micha ; Thibault, Nicolas ; Vahlenkamp, Maximilian ; Valero, Luis ; Wouters, Sébastien ; Wu, Huaichun ; Claeys, Philippe. / The Cyclostratigraphy Intercomparison Project (CIP) : consistency, merits and pitfalls. In: Earth-Science Reviews. 2019 ; Vol. 199.
@article{c74629acb9864adbb54c9d4dc6de6322,
title = "The Cyclostratigraphy Intercomparison Project (CIP): consistency, merits and pitfalls",
abstract = "Cyclostratigraphy is an important tool for understanding astronomical climate forcing and reading geological time in sedimentary sequences, provided that an imprint of insolation variations caused by Earth's orbital eccentricity, obliquity and/or precession is preserved (Milankovitch forcing). Numerous stratigraphic and paleoclimate studies have applied cyclostratigraphy, but the robustness of the methodology and its dependence on the investigator have not been systematically evaluated. We developed the Cyclostratigraphy Intercomparison Project (CIP) to assess the robustness of cyclostratigraphic methods using an experimental design of three artificial cyclostratigraphic case studies with known input parameters. Each case study is designed to address specific challenges that are relevant to cyclostratigraphy. Case 1 represents an offshore research vessel environment, as only a drill-core photo and the approximate position of a late Miocene stage boundary are available for analysis. In Case 2, the Pleistocene proxy record displays clear nonlinear cyclical patterns and the interpretation is complicated by the presence of a hiatus. Case 3 represents a Late Devonian proxy record with a low signal-to-noise ratio with no specific theoretical astronomical solution available for this age. Each case was analyzed by a test group of 17-20 participants, with varying experience levels, methodological preferences and dedicated analysis time. During the CIP 2018 meeting in Brussels, Belgium, the ensuing analyses and discussion demonstrated that most participants did not arrive at a perfect solution, which may be partly explained by the limited amount of time spent on the exercises (∼4.5 hours per case). However, in all three cases, the median solution of all submitted analyses accurately approached the correct result and several participants obtained the exact correct answers. Interestingly, systematically better performances were obtained for cases that represented the data type and stratigraphic age that were closest to the individual participants’ experience. This experiment demonstrates that cyclostratigraphy is a powerful tool for deciphering time in sedimentary successions and, importantly, that it is a trainable skill. Finally, we emphasize the importance of an integrated stratigraphic approach and provide flexible guidelines on what good practices in cyclostratigraphy should include. Our case studies provide valuable insight into current common practices in cyclostratigraphy, their potential merits and pitfalls. Our work does not provide a quantitative measure of reliability and uncertainty of cyclostratigraphy, but rather constitutes a starting point for further discussions on how to move the maturing field of cyclostratigraphy forward.",
author = "Matthias Sinnesael and {De Vleeschouwer}, David and Christian Zeeden and Batenburg, {Sietske J.} and {Da Silva}, {Anne Christine} and {de Winter}, {Niels J.} and Jaume Dinar{\`e}s-Turell and Drury, {Anna Joy} and Gabriele Gambacorta and Hilgen, {Frederik J.} and Hinnov, {Linda A.} and Hudson, {Alexander J.L.} and Kemp, {David B.} and Lantink, {Margriet L.} and Jiř{\'i} Laurin and Mingsong Li and Diederik Liebrand and Chao Ma and Meyers, {Stephen R.} and Johannes Monkenbusch and Alessandro Montanari and Theresa Nohl and Heiko P{\"a}like and Damien Pas and Micha Ruhl and Nicolas Thibault and Maximilian Vahlenkamp and Luis Valero and S{\'e}bastien Wouters and Huaichun Wu and Philippe Claeys",
year = "2019",
month = "12",
doi = "10.1016/j.earscirev.2019.102965",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "199",
journal = "Earth-Science Reviews",
issn = "0012-8252",
publisher = "Elsevier",

}

Sinnesael, M, De Vleeschouwer, D, Zeeden, C, Batenburg, SJ, Da Silva, AC, de Winter, NJ, Dinarès-Turell, J, Drury, AJ, Gambacorta, G, Hilgen, FJ, Hinnov, LA, Hudson, AJL, Kemp, DB, Lantink, ML, Laurin, J, Li, M, Liebrand, D, Ma, C, Meyers, SR, Monkenbusch, J, Montanari, A, Nohl, T, Pälike, H, Pas, D, Ruhl, M, Thibault, N, Vahlenkamp, M, Valero, L, Wouters, S, Wu, H & Claeys, P 2019, 'The Cyclostratigraphy Intercomparison Project (CIP): consistency, merits and pitfalls', Earth-Science Reviews, vol. 199, 102965. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.earscirev.2019.102965

The Cyclostratigraphy Intercomparison Project (CIP) : consistency, merits and pitfalls. / Sinnesael, Matthias; De Vleeschouwer, David; Zeeden, Christian; Batenburg, Sietske J.; Da Silva, Anne Christine; de Winter, Niels J.; Dinarès-Turell, Jaume; Drury, Anna Joy; Gambacorta, Gabriele; Hilgen, Frederik J.; Hinnov, Linda A.; Hudson, Alexander J.L.; Kemp, David B.; Lantink, Margriet L.; Laurin, Jiří; Li, Mingsong; Liebrand, Diederik; Ma, Chao; Meyers, Stephen R.; Monkenbusch, Johannes; Montanari, Alessandro; Nohl, Theresa; Pälike, Heiko; Pas, Damien; Ruhl, Micha; Thibault, Nicolas; Vahlenkamp, Maximilian; Valero, Luis; Wouters, Sébastien; Wu, Huaichun; Claeys, Philippe.

In: Earth-Science Reviews, Vol. 199, 102965, 12.2019.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

TY - JOUR

T1 - The Cyclostratigraphy Intercomparison Project (CIP)

T2 - consistency, merits and pitfalls

AU - Sinnesael, Matthias

AU - De Vleeschouwer, David

AU - Zeeden, Christian

AU - Batenburg, Sietske J.

AU - Da Silva, Anne Christine

AU - de Winter, Niels J.

AU - Dinarès-Turell, Jaume

AU - Drury, Anna Joy

AU - Gambacorta, Gabriele

AU - Hilgen, Frederik J.

AU - Hinnov, Linda A.

AU - Hudson, Alexander J.L.

AU - Kemp, David B.

AU - Lantink, Margriet L.

AU - Laurin, Jiří

AU - Li, Mingsong

AU - Liebrand, Diederik

AU - Ma, Chao

AU - Meyers, Stephen R.

AU - Monkenbusch, Johannes

AU - Montanari, Alessandro

AU - Nohl, Theresa

AU - Pälike, Heiko

AU - Pas, Damien

AU - Ruhl, Micha

AU - Thibault, Nicolas

AU - Vahlenkamp, Maximilian

AU - Valero, Luis

AU - Wouters, Sébastien

AU - Wu, Huaichun

AU - Claeys, Philippe

PY - 2019/12

Y1 - 2019/12

N2 - Cyclostratigraphy is an important tool for understanding astronomical climate forcing and reading geological time in sedimentary sequences, provided that an imprint of insolation variations caused by Earth's orbital eccentricity, obliquity and/or precession is preserved (Milankovitch forcing). Numerous stratigraphic and paleoclimate studies have applied cyclostratigraphy, but the robustness of the methodology and its dependence on the investigator have not been systematically evaluated. We developed the Cyclostratigraphy Intercomparison Project (CIP) to assess the robustness of cyclostratigraphic methods using an experimental design of three artificial cyclostratigraphic case studies with known input parameters. Each case study is designed to address specific challenges that are relevant to cyclostratigraphy. Case 1 represents an offshore research vessel environment, as only a drill-core photo and the approximate position of a late Miocene stage boundary are available for analysis. In Case 2, the Pleistocene proxy record displays clear nonlinear cyclical patterns and the interpretation is complicated by the presence of a hiatus. Case 3 represents a Late Devonian proxy record with a low signal-to-noise ratio with no specific theoretical astronomical solution available for this age. Each case was analyzed by a test group of 17-20 participants, with varying experience levels, methodological preferences and dedicated analysis time. During the CIP 2018 meeting in Brussels, Belgium, the ensuing analyses and discussion demonstrated that most participants did not arrive at a perfect solution, which may be partly explained by the limited amount of time spent on the exercises (∼4.5 hours per case). However, in all three cases, the median solution of all submitted analyses accurately approached the correct result and several participants obtained the exact correct answers. Interestingly, systematically better performances were obtained for cases that represented the data type and stratigraphic age that were closest to the individual participants’ experience. This experiment demonstrates that cyclostratigraphy is a powerful tool for deciphering time in sedimentary successions and, importantly, that it is a trainable skill. Finally, we emphasize the importance of an integrated stratigraphic approach and provide flexible guidelines on what good practices in cyclostratigraphy should include. Our case studies provide valuable insight into current common practices in cyclostratigraphy, their potential merits and pitfalls. Our work does not provide a quantitative measure of reliability and uncertainty of cyclostratigraphy, but rather constitutes a starting point for further discussions on how to move the maturing field of cyclostratigraphy forward.

AB - Cyclostratigraphy is an important tool for understanding astronomical climate forcing and reading geological time in sedimentary sequences, provided that an imprint of insolation variations caused by Earth's orbital eccentricity, obliquity and/or precession is preserved (Milankovitch forcing). Numerous stratigraphic and paleoclimate studies have applied cyclostratigraphy, but the robustness of the methodology and its dependence on the investigator have not been systematically evaluated. We developed the Cyclostratigraphy Intercomparison Project (CIP) to assess the robustness of cyclostratigraphic methods using an experimental design of three artificial cyclostratigraphic case studies with known input parameters. Each case study is designed to address specific challenges that are relevant to cyclostratigraphy. Case 1 represents an offshore research vessel environment, as only a drill-core photo and the approximate position of a late Miocene stage boundary are available for analysis. In Case 2, the Pleistocene proxy record displays clear nonlinear cyclical patterns and the interpretation is complicated by the presence of a hiatus. Case 3 represents a Late Devonian proxy record with a low signal-to-noise ratio with no specific theoretical astronomical solution available for this age. Each case was analyzed by a test group of 17-20 participants, with varying experience levels, methodological preferences and dedicated analysis time. During the CIP 2018 meeting in Brussels, Belgium, the ensuing analyses and discussion demonstrated that most participants did not arrive at a perfect solution, which may be partly explained by the limited amount of time spent on the exercises (∼4.5 hours per case). However, in all three cases, the median solution of all submitted analyses accurately approached the correct result and several participants obtained the exact correct answers. Interestingly, systematically better performances were obtained for cases that represented the data type and stratigraphic age that were closest to the individual participants’ experience. This experiment demonstrates that cyclostratigraphy is a powerful tool for deciphering time in sedimentary successions and, importantly, that it is a trainable skill. Finally, we emphasize the importance of an integrated stratigraphic approach and provide flexible guidelines on what good practices in cyclostratigraphy should include. Our case studies provide valuable insight into current common practices in cyclostratigraphy, their potential merits and pitfalls. Our work does not provide a quantitative measure of reliability and uncertainty of cyclostratigraphy, but rather constitutes a starting point for further discussions on how to move the maturing field of cyclostratigraphy forward.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85074386694&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85074386694&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1016/j.earscirev.2019.102965

DO - 10.1016/j.earscirev.2019.102965

M3 - Review article

AN - SCOPUS:85074386694

VL - 199

JO - Earth-Science Reviews

JF - Earth-Science Reviews

SN - 0012-8252

M1 - 102965

ER -

Sinnesael M, De Vleeschouwer D, Zeeden C, Batenburg SJ, Da Silva AC, de Winter NJ et al. The Cyclostratigraphy Intercomparison Project (CIP): consistency, merits and pitfalls. Earth-Science Reviews. 2019 Dec;199. 102965. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.earscirev.2019.102965