Dust concentration and flux in ice cores from the Tibetan Plateau over the past few decades

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Wu, Guangjian ; Yao, Tandong ; Xu, Baiqing ; Tian, Lide ; Zhang, Chenglong ; Zhang, Xuelei (2011)

In this paper, we provide the concentrations and fluxes of dust particles (1–30 μm diameter), quantitatively calculated, in several shallow ice cores recovered from the northern (Dunde), western (Muztagata), central (Tanggula) and southern (Dasuopu and Everest) parts of the Tibetan Plateau over the past few decades. Dust concentrations from the northern and western Tibetan Plateau are 2–10 times higher, and from the central Tibetan Plateau is five times higher, respectively, than in the southern part. Dust flux in ice cores is highly dependent on mass concentration, but does not necessarily correlate with accumulation. Dust flux in Dunde (about 798 μg cm-2 a-1) is 10 times higher, and that in Muztagata (342 μg cm-2 a-1) is four times higher, respectively, than the dust flux in the central Himalayas (77–103 μg cm-2 a-1). The quantitative assessment of dust flux in ice cores accords with the aerosol optical depth, and both suggest that the general dust transport route is from northwest to southeast over the Tibetan Plateau. Our results reveal the basic properties of upper level tropospheric dust over the Tibetan Plateau, which is useful for the study of the climatic effects of this dust.DOI: 10.1111/j.1600-0889.2010.00457.x
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