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Sci Rep. 2019 Aug 27;9(1):12378. doi: 10.1038/s41598-019-48801-1.

Homogeneous sulfur isotope signature in East Antarctica and implication for sulfur source shifts through the last glacial-interglacial cycle.

Author information

1
Department of Chemical Science and Engineering, School of Materials and Chemical Technology, Tokyo Institute of Technology, 226-8502, Yokohama, Japan. ishino.sakiko@nipr.ac.jp.
2
National Institute of Polar Research, 190-8518, Tokyo, Japan. ishino.sakiko@nipr.ac.jp.
3
Department of Chemical Science and Engineering, School of Materials and Chemical Technology, Tokyo Institute of Technology, 226-8502, Yokohama, Japan. hattori.s.ab@m.titech.ac.jp.
4
Institut des Geoscience de l'Environnement, Université Grenoble Alpes/CNRS, G-INP, IRD, 38000, Grenoble, France.
5
Ecole Normale Supérieure (LGL-TPE), 69364, Lyon, France.
6
Department of Chemical Science and Engineering, School of Materials and Chemical Technology, Tokyo Institute of Technology, 226-8502, Yokohama, Japan.
7
Earth-Life Science Institute, Tokyo Institute of Technology, 152-8551, Tokyo, Japan.

Abstract

Sulfate aerosol (SO42-) preserved in Antarctic ice cores is discussed in the light of interactions between marine biological activity and climate since it is mainly sourced from biogenic emissions from the surface ocean and scatters solar radiation during traveling in the atmosphere. However, there has been a paradox between the ice core record and the marine sediment record; the former shows constant non-sea-salt (nss-) SO42- flux throughout the glacial-interglacial changes, and the latter shows a decrease in biogenic productivity during glacial periods compared to interglacial periods. Here, by ensuring the homogeneity of sulfur isotopic compositions of atmospheric nss-SO42-34Snss) over East Antarctica, we established the applicability of the signature as a robust tool for distinguishing marine biogenic and nonmarine biogenic SO42-. Our findings, in conjunction with existing records of nss-SO42- flux and δ34Snss in Antarctic ice cores, provide an estimate of the relative importance of marine biogenic SO42- during the last glacial period to be 48 ± 10% of nss-SO42-, slightly lower than 59 ± 11% during the interglacial periods. Thus, our results tend to reconcile the ice core and sediment records, with both suggesting the decrease in marine productivity around Southern Ocean under the cold climate.

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