Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-2021-162
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-2021-162

  29 Jun 2021

29 Jun 2021

Review status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal TC.

Deep ice as a geochemical reactor: insights from iron speciation and mineralogy of dust in the Talos Dome ice core (East Antarctica)

Giovanni Baccolo1,2, Barbara Delmonte1, Elena Di Stefano1,2,3, Giannantonio Cibin4, Ilaria Crotti5,6, Massimo Frezzotti7, Dariush Hampai8, Yoshinori Iizuka9, Augusto Marcelli8,10, and Valter Maggi1,2 Giovanni Baccolo et al.
  • 1Environmental and Earth Science Department, University Milano-Bicocca, Italy
  • 2Istituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucleare, section of Milano-Bicocca, Milan, Italy
  • 3Department of Physical, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Siena, Italy
  • 4Diamond Light Source, Harwell Science and Innovation Campus, Didcot, UK
  • 5Department of Environmental Sciences, Informatics and Statistics, Ca’ Foscari University of Venice, Italy
  • 6Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l’Environnement IPSL/CEA-CNRS-UVSQ UMR, Gif-sur-Yvette, France
  • 7Department of Science, University Roma Tre, Italy
  • 8Istituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucleare, Laboratori Nazionali di Frascati, Frascati, Italy
  • 9Institute of Low Temperature Science, Hokkaido University, Sapporo, Japan
  • 10Rome International Center for Materials Science - Superstripes, Rome, Italy

Abstract. Thanks to its insolubility, mineral dust is considered a stable proxy in polar ice cores. With this study we show that below an ice-depth of 1000 m, the Talos Dome ice core (Ross Sea sector of East Antarctica) presents evident and progressive signs of post-depositional processes affecting the mineral dust records. We applied a suite of established and cutting edge techniques to investigate the properties of dust present in the Talos Dome ice core, ranging from concentration and grain-size to elemental-composition and Fe-mineralogy. Results show that through acidic/oxidative weathering, the conditions of deep ice at Talos Dome promote the dissolution of specific minerals and the englacial formation of others, deeply affecting dust primitive features. The expulsion of acidic atmospheric species from ice-grains and their concentration in localized environments is likely the main process responsible for englacial reactions and is related with ice re-crystallization. Deep ice can be seen as a "geochemical reactor" capable of fostering complex reactions which involve both soluble and insoluble impurities. Fe-bearing minerals can efficiently be used to explore such transformations.

Giovanni Baccolo et al.

Status: open (until 24 Aug 2021)

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Giovanni Baccolo et al.

Giovanni Baccolo et al.

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Short summary
Ice is typically seen as a static matrix capable of preserving information for hundreds of thousands of years. Scientists are working to obtain an ice core covering the last 1.5 million years. To interpret such an ancient core, it will be essential to distinguish the original climatic signals from changes produced by post-depositional processes. This study focuses on this, it shows that deep ice promotes complex geochemical reactions that alter the properties of mineral dust trapped into ice.