Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Chemistry and Pharmacology
Abstract Simultaneous measurements of soluble and insoluble impurities were made on the 950 m deep Vostok (78°30′S, 106°54′E, 3420 m a.s.l.) ice core, spanning roughly 50000 yr, using various analytical techniques. We observed higher continental (×37) and marine (×5.1) inputs during the last glacial age than during the Holocene stage. A study of microparticle compositions and of volcanic indicators (Zn, H2SO4), shows that the high observed crustal input is not due to enhanced volcanism, but is rather of continental eolian origin. For the first time, the ionic balance along a deep ice core is established, mainly used in discussing the evolution of the Cl to Na ratio over central East Antarctica with changing climatic conditions: the presence of relatively high amounts of Na2SO4 in the marine aerosol at the Vostok site during the Holocene is demonstrated. Comparison with the Dome C (74°39′S, 124°10′E, 3040 m a.s.l.) results confirms the chronology of the major events: (i) maximum terrestrial input around the last glacial maximum (∼18 ka BP); (ii) end of the high continental flux over Antarctica near 13 ka BP; (iii) marine input varying in an opposing manner to isotopic fluctuations with rather high concentrations beginning to decrease when isotopic values increase and reaching Holocene values at the end of the transition between cold and warmer climate conditions. Detailed comparison with results provided by deep ice cores from other sites which are probably more influenced by oceanic air masses seems to indicate that most of the aerosol reaching central East Antarctica travel over large distance probably at rather high altitude through the troposphere. We can consider that central East Antarctica is well representative of the upper part of the troposphere (higher than i.e., 3000 m) and should, therefore, provide valuable data for global and Antarctic paleoclimatological models.
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