Proxies and measurement techniques for mineral dust in Antarctic ice cores.


To improve quantitative interpretation of ice core aeolian dust records, a systematic methodological comparison was made. This involved methods for water-insoluble particle counting (Coulter counter and laser-sensing particle detector), soluble ion analysis (ion chromatography and continuous flow analysis), elemental analysis (inductively coupled plasma mass spectroscopy at pH 1 and after full acid digestion), and water-insoluble elemental analysis (proton induced X-ray emission). Antarctic ice core samples covering the last deglaciation from the EPICA Dome C (EDC) and the EPICA Dronning Maud Land (EDML) cores were used. All methods correlate very well among each other, but the ratios of glacial age to Holocene concentrations, which are typically a factor approximately 100, differ between the methods by up to a factor of 2 with insoluble particles showing the largest variability. The recovery of ICP-MS measurements depends on the digestion method and is differentfor different elements and during different climatic periods. EDC and EDML samples have similar dust composition, which suggests a common dust source or a common mixture of sources for the two sites. The analyzed samples further reveal a change of dust composition during the last deglaciation.

5 Figures and Tables

Cite this paper

@article{Ruth2008ProxiesAM, title={Proxies and measurement techniques for mineral dust in Antarctic ice cores.}, author={Urs Ruth and C. Barbante and Matthias Bigler and Barbara Delmonte and Hubertus Fischer and Paolo Gabrielli and V. Gaspari and Patrik Kaufmann and Fabrice Lambert and Valter Maggi and Federica Marino and J. -R. Petit and Roberto Udisti and Dietmar Wagenbach and Anna Wegner and Eric W. Wolff}, journal={Environmental science & technology}, year={2008}, volume={42 15}, pages={5675-81} }