Snow-pit record from a coastal Antarctic site and its preservation of meteorological features

Yalalt Nyamgerel, Sang Bum Hong, Yeongcheol Han, Songyi Kim, Jeonghoon Lee, Soon Do Hur

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Polar snow pits or ice cores preserve valuable information derived from the atmosphere on past climate and environment changes. A 1.57-m snow-pit record from the coastal site (Styx Glacier) in eastern Antarctica covering the period from January 2011 to January 2015 was discussed and compared with meteorological variables. The dominant contribution of the deposition of sea-salt aerosols due to the proximity of the site to the ocean and processes of sea ice formation was revealed in the ionic concentrations. Consistent seasonal peaks in δ18O, δD, MSA, nssSO2- 4, and NO- 3 indicate the strong enhancement of their source during warm periods, whereas the sea-salt ions (Na+, K+, Mg2+, Ca2+, Cl-, and totSO2-4) exhibit a distinct distribution. Monthly mean d18O positively correlates with the air temperature record from an automatic weather station (AWS) located in the main wind direction. Despite the shortness of the record, we suspect that the slight depletion of the isotopic composition and lowering of the snow accumulation could be related to the cooler air temperature with the decrease of open sea area. Consistency with previous studies and the positive correlation of sea-salt ions in the snow pit indicate the relatively good preservation of snow layers with noticeable climate and environmental signals [e.g., changes in sea ice extent (SIE) or sea surface temperature]. We report a new snow-pit record, which would be comparative and supportive to understand similar signals preserved in deeper ice cores in this location.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)108-118
Number of pages11
JournalEarth Interactions
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2021

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  • Antarctica
  • Sea ice
  • Snow


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