The browser you are using is not supported by this website. All versions of Internet Explorer are no longer supported, either by us or Microsoft (read more here:

Please use a modern browser to fully experience our website, such as the newest versions of Edge, Chrome, Firefox or Safari etc.

Svante Björck

Svante Björck

Professor emeritus

Svante Björck

Sand drift events and surface winds in south-central Sweden : From the deglaciation to the present


  • Martin Bernhardson
  • Helena Alexanderson
  • Svante Björck
  • Florian Adolphi

Summary, in English

During the transition from the last glacial into the Holocene interglacial, the atmospheric circulation in the North Atlantic area changed from a glacial mode, influenced by the presence of large ice sheets, into a system more similar to that of the present day. This change had implications for wind, temperature and precipitation patterns that can be traced in geological archives. Here, we focus on reconstructing past wind directions over southern Scandinavia, as inferred from the net sediment transport direction of inland dunes in south-central Sweden. We analysed single dunes and dune fields along a 540-km-long S-N transect with LiDAR (Light detection and ranging) derived DEMs (digital elevation models) to determine their geomorphological type and the directional mode of the wind that led to their formation. Luminescence ages of sand drift and dune formation were compiled from previous studies, allowing us to build a chronology of sand drift after the deglaciation of south-central Sweden. The majority of the dunes appear to have been formed by westerly or northwesterly winds and stabilised ∼10.5–9.0 ka. Although this is rather close in time to the local deglaciation for the northern sites, it is long after the disappearance of ice from the more southern sites. The coeval dune stabilisation over such a large geographical area suggests that regional environmental conditions played an important role. It is likely that an unstable climate in conjunction with low groundwater tables during the early Holocene locally delayed vegetation from stabilising the dunes.


  • Quaternary Sciences
  • MERGE: ModElling the Regional and Global Earth system

Publishing year







Quaternary Science Reviews



Document type

Journal article




  • Geology


  • Aeolian
  • Geomorphology
  • GIS
  • Holocene
  • Luminescence dating
  • Palaeoclimatology
  • Remote sensing
  • Sand drift
  • Sand dunes
  • Scandinavia
  • Sweden




  • Aeolian activity in Sweden: an unexplored environmental archive


  • ISSN: 0277-3791