Articles | Volume 4, issue 4
The Cryosphere, 4, 561–568, 2010

Special issue: Ice and climate change: a view from the south

The Cryosphere, 4, 561–568, 2010

Research article 08 Dec 2010

Research article | 08 Dec 2010

Influence of the Tungurahua eruption on the ice core records of Chimborazo, Ecuador

P. Ginot1,2, U. Schotterer3, W. Stichler4, M. A. Godoi5,6, B. Francou7, and M. Schwikowski5 P. Ginot et al.
  • 1Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (IRD), UMS222 OSUG, France
  • 2Laboratoire de Glaciologie et Géophysique de l'Environnement (LGGE), UMR5183, St Martin d'Hères, France
  • 3Division of Climate and Environmental Physics, University of Berne, Switzerland
  • 4HZM-Institute for Groundwater Ecology, Neuherberg, Germany
  • 5Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI), Villigen, Switzerland
  • 6Dirección de Programas Antárticos, Instituto de la Patagonia, Universidad de Magallanes, Punta Arenas, Chile
  • 7Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (IRD), UMR012 LTHE, Ecuador

Abstract. The comparison of two shallow ice cores recovered in 1999 and 2000 from the same place on the Chimborazo summit glacier revealed the influence of the coincident Tungurahua volcanic eruption on their stable isotope and chemical records. The surface snow melting and water percolation induced from the ash deposition caused a preferential elution and re-localization of certain ionic species, while the stable isotope records were not affected. Additionally, the comparison of the ionic amount and some selected ion ratios preserved along the ice core column reports under which processes the chemical species are introduced in the snow pack, as snow flake condensation nuclei, by atmospheric scavenging or by dry deposition. This preliminary study is essential for the interpretation of the deep Chimborazo ice core, or for other sites where surrounding volcanic activity influences the glaciochemical records.