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Isotopes Environ Health Stud. 2013;49(4):542-54. doi: 10.1080/10256016.2013.835809.

Stable isotopes in river waters in the Tajik Pamirs: regional and temporal characteristics.

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a Department Catchment Hydrology , Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research GmbH - UFZ , Halle/Saale , Germany.


The Gunt River catchment in the Central Pamirs is a representative of the headwater catchments of the Aral Sea Basin. It covers 14,000 km(2), spanning altitudes between 2000 and 6700 m a.s.l. In a monitoring network, water samples were taken at 30 sampling points every month and analysed for the stable water isotopes ((18)O and (2)H). Our first results show δ(2)H values in the range from-131.2 to-94.9 ‰ and δ(18)O values from-18.0 to-14.0 ‰. The stable isotope patterns in the catchment seem to follow a systematic way, dominated by an altitude effect with a mean Δ δ(2)H=-3.6 ‰/100 m. The observed seasonal variations can be explained by geographical aspects such as the influence of different wind systems as well as melting processes.

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