PerspectiveClimate

The smoking gun of the ice ages

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Science  09 Dec 2016:
Vol. 354, Issue 6317, pp. 1235-1236
DOI: 10.1126/science.aal4111

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Summary

Forty years ago, Hays, Imbrie, and Shackleton in a paper in Science tested the hypothesis that small changes in Earth's orbital geometry—namely precession, obliquity, and eccentricity—were responsible for the waxing and waning of the great continental ice sheets during the Quaternary period, which began about 2.58 million years ago (1). The paper is considered to be the “smoking gun” in support of the astronomical hypothesis of the Ice Ages, which is over a century old and most often ascribed to Milutin Milankovitch (2).