Project information

  • Project: Development of numerical tools for thermochronological predictions associated with glacial erosion of landscapes.              
  • Project date: 01 January 2021- 31 December 2022
  • Postdoctoral Researcher : Maxime Bernard  

Project Highlight

  • Sample-specific thermochronological predicitions from a thermo-kinematic model (Pecube)
  • Development of a graphic user interface (Pecube)
  • Coupling of codes: iSOSIA & Pecube

Modelling project detail

My contribution within the COOLER project focuses on the development of numerical tools to aid interpretation of low-temperature thermochronological data from glacial settings.

To reach that goal, I aim to redesign the widely used Pecube software (Braun, 2003; Braun et al., 2012), a thermo-kinematic model designed to predict the thermochronological ages resulting from a 3D computation of the thermal structure of a crust with an evolving surface topography. The main improvements will consider implementation of the following into Pecube:
  • Radiation damage accumulation and annealing models for the apatite and zircon (U-Th)/He systems
  • Prediction of degassing ratios for 4He/3He thermochronology
  • Apatite and zircon fission-track with multi-kinetic models
  • The possibility for sample-specific thermochronometer predictions
  • The design of a user interface allowing to simply create input files for Pecube and plotting results
The redesigning will also include a more realistic thermal structure with depth-dependent heat production, variable basal heat flow, and inclusion of magmatic heating and cooling. In parallel, I will work on improving the coupling of the glacial landscape evolution model, iSOSIA (Egholm et al., 2011) with Pecube, by allowing the user to run iSOSIA models with output files that can be directly imported into Pecube. This framework will facilitate the production of numerical models that will be used as guides for field studies and sample collection. The overall goal is to test hypotheses and concepts, including (1) spatial and temporal variations in erosion rates in response to climate change (i.e. cooling), and (2) the effect of uplift rate on relief change and erosion patterns as recorded by low-temperature thermochronology.