Global chronostratigraphical correlation table for the last 2.7 million years v.2019 (Poster version)

Published: 31 Jan 2020 | Version 3 | DOI: 10.17632/dtsn3xn3n6.3

Description of this data

This is a 2020-updated poster version of Figure 1 of the Quaternary International 500 article. The Figure 2 inset is also included here, for completeness.
Cohen, K.M. & Gibbard, P.L. 2019 Global chronostratigraphical correlation table for the last 2.7 million years.
Quaternary International vol. 500. Fig. 1.

See abstract and full text of the linked paper for details, research history and citations/references to materials included in the chart: it makes extensive use of published data sets and schemes, all cited in the main text, many of which have data repositories.

The 2020 update comprised the ratification of a GSSP for the Middle Pleistocene (introducing the Chibanian Stage), the splitting of the Subseries and Stages column and the way the GSSPs are indicated, and the lowering of the provisional numeric age for the Late Pleistocene Subseries/Stage from 0.129 to 0.126 (affecting the dashed horizontal line that serves as a left-right guide across the chart). Otherwise, the undivided poster version only differs from the 3-page spread figure in the QI paper in placement and font size of title and version, placement of logotypes, inclusion of Utrecht University and University of Cambridge logo's on the poster (continued from earlier releases of the chart), reference to the Quaternary International v-500 2019 paper.
All data featured on the chart, is referenced in brief in the text below, and referenced in full and documented in brief in the 2019 paper.

The 2019 QI-500 paper publication followed up the Episodes 2008 Gibbard & Cohen paper.
The 2020 edition of the chart follows up editions in 2019 (QI-500/INQUA-Dublin) and the 2016 IUGS' Cape town IGC version (web-released).

The release of the poster version via, cross-referenced from the QI paper, was coordinated with the QI journal management (Elsevier) and editorship (INQUA).
Use of the IUGS-ICS and INQUA logo's was coordinated with the respective organisations (and is continued from earlier releases of the chart).

The PDF files contain scale-able vector graphics only and therefore should suit reproductions to mini-poster (A4, A3) and poster size (e.g. A1) formats alike.
Before seeking far zoomed in usage of the chart: take notice of the discussion in the QI paper of chosen graphical resolution, versus achievable geological and chronometric correlation accuracy limits.

Experiment data files

Steps to reproduce

The chart makes extensive use of published data sets and schemes, all cited in the main text.

The graphic summarizes and replots data, and was manually created: For curves: re-plotting data from downloaded from data repositories, and email-obtained original data files, manually labeling; for schemes: taken over from tables and graphs in source publications; for ages of events and boundaries: taken over from text, tables and labeling in figures from source publications. Our made-graphic versions are not new data.

From left to right, key references (the main paper cites many more) per grouped column are:

Cohen et al. 2013, updated 2020/01 (ICS chronostratigraphic chart / )
Suganuma et al. 2019/2020 (Middle Pleistocene)
* Version 2 on includes the Chibanian GSSP (Middle Pleistocene), and split the Subseries/Stages column into two, but kept base Late Pleistocene to 0.126. It has version number 2020.
* Version 3 on includes the Chibanian GSSP (Middle Pleistocene), has the numeric age for base Late Pleistocene lowered to 0.129 Ma. The dashed horizontal lines guiding this boundary are also lowered. It has version number 2020b.
Gibbard & Head 2010 (base Pleistocene)
Head & Gibbard 2015 (Pleistocene subdivision)
Rasmussen et al. 2006 (base Holocene)
Walker et al. 2018 (Holocene subdivision)

Channell et al. 2016 (Paleomagnetic intenstity curve ; ages events)
Lisiecki & Raymo 2005 (stacked d18O ; ages MIS boundaries)
Berggren et al. 1995 (biozonations)

Petit et al. 1999 (Vostok)
EPICA members 2004 (EPICA Dome-C)
Ding et al. 2005 (Chinese Loess curve/timescale)
Prokopenko et al. 2006 (Baikal biogenic silica)

Sources as in Gibbard & Cohen 2008 (Britain, NW Europe, North America, New Zealand), corrections, revisions and additions (Russian and Ukraine schemes): Shik et al. 2015; Van Kolfschoten & Gerasimenko 2006.

Walker et al. 2018 (Holocene subdivision)
Shackleton et al. 2003 (MD95-2042 benthic d18O)
Voelker and de Abreu, 2011 (Heinrich events)
Rasmussen et al. 2014 (Greenland ice stadial/interstadial scheme)
Reimer et al. 2013 (IntCal13 age calibration / 14C production variability)

Related links

Latest version

  • Version 3


    Published: 2020-01-31

    DOI: 10.17632/dtsn3xn3n6.3

    Cite this dataset

    Cohen, Kim; Gibbard, Phil (2020), “Global chronostratigraphical correlation table for the last 2.7 million years v.2019 (Poster version)”, Mendeley Data, v3


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Universiteit Utrecht Faculteit Geowetenschappen, University of Cambridge Scott Polar Research Institute


Geology, Stratigraphy, Quaternary Period, Geochronology, Quaternary Stratigraphy, Holocene, Pleistocene, Palaeoclimate


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