US International Trans Antarctic Scientific Expedition (US ITASE) Glaciochemical Data, Version 2

This data set contains sub-annually resolved ice core chemistry data from various sites on the Antarctic Ice Sheet during the US International Trans-Antarctic Scientific Expedition (US ITASE) deployments. Researchers conducted experiments approximately every 30 - 300 km looking for clues representing climatic conditions over the past 200-1000+ years. Ice cores obtained for the glaciochemical component of the US ITASE research were analyzed for soluble major ion content and in some cases trace elements. Extreme events, such as volcanic eruptions, provide absolute age horizons within each core that are easily identified in chemical profiles. The chemical analysis is also useful for quantifying anthropogenic impact, biogeochemical cycling, and for reconstructing past atmospheric circulation patterns.

Table of Contents

  1. Contacts and Acknowledgments
  2. Detailed Data Description
  3. Data Access and Tools
  4. Data Acquisition and Processing
  5. References and Related Publications
  6. Document Information

Citing These Data

We kindly request that you cite the use of this data set in a publication using the following citation. For more information, see our Use and Copyright Web page.

Mayewski, P. A. and D. A. Dixon. 2013. US International Trans-Antarctic Scientific Expedition (US ITASE) Glaciochemical Data. Version 2. [indicate subset used]. Boulder, Colorado USA: National Snow and Ice Data Center. http://dx.doi.org/10.7265/N51V5BXR.

Overview

Sensor

Continuous Melter System
Ion Chromatograph (IC) Instrument
Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometer
Stable Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometer

Spatial Coverage

Data were collected on the Western Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) and the Eastern Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS). For exact core/pit locations, see the US ITASE Snow Core/Pit Site Map.

Southernmost Latitude: -90.0° S
Northernmost Latitude: -77.68° S
Westernmost Longitude: -76.1° W
Easternmost Longitude: 152.37° E

Spatial Resolution

Each core was sampled approximately every 2 cm.

Temporal Coverage

Data were collected from 1999 to 2008.

Temporal Resolution

Data were collected seasonally during the Antarctic summers.

Parameters

  • Ion Concentrations of Na+, Ca2+, Mg2+, K+, NH4+, Cl-, NO3-, SO42- (sea salt and non-sea salt), and CH3SO3- (methyl sulfonate) (µg/L)
  • Trace Elements of Sr, Cd, Sb, Cs, Ba, La, Ce, Pr, Nd, Pb, Bi, As, Tl, Ti, V, Cr, Mn, Co, Cu, Zn, Li (ng/L)
    Sm, Eu, Gd, Tb, Dy, Ho, Er, Tm, Yb, Lu, U (pg/L)
    Al, S, Ca, Fe, Na, Mg, K (µg/L)
  • Snow Water Equivalent (cm)

Data Format

Data are provided in the following formats:

  • Comma-separated Value (CSV)
  • Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet (.xlsx)
  • Tag Image File (.tif) formats.

Metadata Access

View Metadata Record

Version History

The current version of this data set is V2. For information regarding Version 1 data, see the Version 1 Documentation.

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1. Contacts and Acknowledgments

Investigator(s) Name and Title

Paul A Mayewski
Climate Change Institute
Global Science Center, University of Maine
Orono, ME, USA

Daniel A Dixon
Climate Change Institute
Global Science Center, University of Maine
Orono, ME, USA

Technical Contact

NSIDC User Services
National Snow and Ice Data Center
CIRES, 449 UCB
University of Colorado
Boulder, CO 80309-0449  USA
phone: +1 303.492.6199
fax: +1 303.492.2468
form: Contact NSIDC User Services
e-mail: nsidc@nsidc.org

Acknowledgements

This grant was supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) Office of Polar Programs (OPP) award OPP-9725057 and OPP-0837883.

2. Detailed Data Description

At each core/pit site, a 3-inch diameter (7.6 cm) ice core was drilled up to a depth of 120 m and sampling was taken between 50 m and 70 m. Surface snow samples were collected every 10 - 40 km. High-resolution chemical analysis (up to 75 measurements per meter) was used to define each core-chemistry year based on peaks in Na+, Ca2+, Mg2+, K+, NH4+, Cl-, NO3-, SO42- (sea salt and non-sea salt), and CH3SO3- (methyl sulfonate), and in some cases trace elements.

The ions, Na+, Ca2+, Mg2+, K+, NH4+, Cl-, NO3-, SO42-, and CH3SO3-, either individually or in combinations, indicate many different processes occurring in, around, or over Antarctica. By looking at these ion concentrations down ice cores, researchers can obtain accurately dated, sub-annual records of Antarctic meteorological and glaciochemical processes hundreds, or sometimes thousands of years into the past.

Format

Data are provided in the following formats:

  • Comma-separated Value (CSV)
  • Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet (.xlsx)
  • Tag Image File (.tif).

File and Directory Structure

Data are available on the FTP site in the ftp://sidads.colorado.edu/pub/DATASETS/AGDC/nsidc0273_dixon_v2/ directory. Within this directory, there are 66 files with three different file formats. The file formats dictate the type of data in that file. For example:

  • Chemistry data are in Comma-separated Value (CSV) format
  • Accumulation data are in a Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet (.xlsx) format
  • Core location map is in Tag Image File (.tif) format.

File Naming Convention

File names correspond to the year each core was extracted, along with individual core/pit locations where the data were collected.

Central West Antarctic Data Files

This section explains the file naming convention used for the Central West Antarctic data files.

Example File Name: CWA_a_2013.csv

CWA_x_2013.csv

Refer to Table 1 for the valid values for the file name variables listed above.

Where:

Table 1. Central West Antarctic File Naming Convention
Variable Description
CWA Central West Antarctic
x a = 1st core of the field season
d = 4th core of the field season
2013 Year the files were updated
.csv Comma-separated Value Format

Ross Ice Drainage System Data Files

This section explains the file naming convention used for the Ross Ice Drainage System data files.

Example File Name: RIDS95A_2013.csv

RIDS95x_2013.csv

Refer to Table 2 for the valid values for the file name variables listed above.

Where:

Table 2. Ross Ice Drainage System File Naming Convention
Variable Description
RIDS Ross Ice Drainage System
95 Data obtained in 1995
x A = 1st core of the field season
B = 2nd core of the field season
C = 3rd core of the field season
2013 Year the files were updated
.csv Comma-separated Value Format

Kamb Ice Stream Data Files

This section explains the file naming convention used for the Kamb Ice Stream data files. Note: This ice stream use to be called Ice Stream C.

Example File Name: UpC_2013.csv

Refer to Table 3 for the valid values for the file name variables listed above.

Where:

Table 3. Kamb Ice Stream File Naming Convention
Variable Description
UpC Kamb Ice Stream
2013 Year the files were updated
.csv Comma-separated Value Format

Siple Dome Data Files

This section explains the file naming convention used for the Siple Dome data files.

Example File Name: SDM1994_2013.csv

Refer to Table 4 for the valid values for the file name variables listed above.

Where:

Table 4. Siple Dome File Naming Convention
Variable Description
SDM Siple Dome
1994 Data obtained in 1994
2013 Year the files were updated
.csv Comma-separated Value Format

South Pole Data Files

This section explains the file naming convention used for the South Pole data files.

Example File Name: SouthPole1995_2013.csv

Refer to Table 5 for the valid values for the file name variables listed above.

Where:

Table 5. South Pole File Naming Convention
Variable Description
SouthPole South Pole
1995 Data obtained in 1995
2013 Year the files were updated
.csv Comma-separated Value Format

US_ITASE Data Files

This section explains the file naming convention used for the US_ITASE data files.

Example File Name: US_ITASE-00-1_2013.csv

US_ITASE-xx-y_2013.csv

Refer to Table 6 for the valid values for the file name variables listed above.

Where:

Table 6. US_ITASE File Naming Convention
Variable Description
US_ITASE US International Trans-Antarctic Scientific Expedition
xx Year the core was drilled. For example, 99 = 1999-2000 field season; 00 = 2000-2001 field season; etc.
y Core number for each season. For example, 00-1 = 1st core drilled during the 2000-2001 field season; 01-5 = 5th core of the 2001-2002 field season; etc.
2013 Year the files were updated
.csv Comma-separated Value Format

Example File Name: US_ITASE_Core Info-SWE-Density_2013.xlsx

Refer to Table 7 for the valid values for the file name variables listed above.

Where:

Table 7. US_ITASE_Core Info-SWE-Density File Naming Convention
Variable Description
US_ITASE_ US International Trans-Antarctic Scientific Expedition
Core Info-SWE-Density This spreadsheet has three worksheets:

US ITASE Core Locations - contains various information for each ice core such as location, elevation, and depth

US ITASE SWE - contains annual accumulation data in snow water equivalent units

US ITASE Density - ice core density profiles calculated from field measurements
2013 Year the files were updated
.xlsx Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet Format

Example File Name: US_ITASE_Core Map_2013.tif

Refer to Table 8 for the valid values for the file name variables listed above.

Where:

Table 8. US_ITASE Core Map File Naming Convention
Variable Description
US_ITASE_Core US International Trans-Antarctic Scientific Expedition
Map US ITASE Snow Core/Pit Site Map
2013 Year the files were updated
.tif Tag Image File Format

Example File Name: US_ITASE_Surface Snow_02_IC_2013.csv

US_ITASE_Surface Snow_xx_IC_2013.csv

Refer to Table 9 for the valid values for the file name variables listed above.

Where:

Table 9. US_ITASE Surface Snow IC File Naming Convention
Variable Description
US_ITASE US International Trans-Antarctic Scientific Expedition
Surface Snow Indicates that this file contains various data types from the surface snow samples/sites
xx Field season in which the surface snow sample was collected. For example, 02 = the 2002-2003 field season
IC Surface snow major-ion data measured using an Ion Chromatograph
2013 Year the files were updated
.csv Comma-separated Value Format

Example File Name: US_ITASE_Surface Snow_02_ICPMS_2013.csv

US_ITASE_Surface Snow_xx_ICPMS_2013.csv

Refer to Table 10 for the valid values for the file name variables listed above.

Where:

Table 10. US_ITASE Surface Snow ICPMS File Naming Convention
Variable Description
US_ITASE US International Trans-Antarctic Scientific Expedition
Surface Snow Indicates that this file contains various data types from the surface snow samples/sites
xx Field season in which the surface snow sample was collected. For example, 02 = the 2002-2003 field season
ICPMS Surface snow trace-element data measured using an Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometer
2013 Year the files were updated
.csv Comma-separated Value Format

Example File Name: US_ITASE_Surface Snow_02_Physical Parameters_2013.csv

US_ITASE_Surface Snow_xx_Physical Parameters_2013.csv

Refer to Table 11 for the valid values for the file name variables listed above.

Where:

Table 11. US_ITASE Surface Snow Physical Parameters File Naming Convention
Variable Description
US_ITASE US International Trans-Antarctic Scientific Expedition
Surface Snow Indicates that this file contains various data types from the surface snow samples/sites
xx Field season in which the surface snow sample was collected. For example, 02 = the 2002-2003 field season.
Physical Parameters Various physical and isotopic surface snow data types. See Dixon et al., 2013 for detailed info.
2013 Year the files were updated
.csv Comma-separated Value Format

Example File Name: US_ITASE-02-1_ICPMS_2013.csv

US_ITASE-xx-y_ICPMS_2013.csv

Refer to Table 12 for the valid values for the file name variables listed above.

Where:

Table 12. US_ITASE ICPMS File Naming Convention
Variable Description
US_ITASE US International Trans-Antarctic Scientific Expedition
xx Field season in which the surface snow sample was collected. For example, 00 = the 2000-2001 field season
y Core number for each season. For example, 00-1 = 1st core drilled during the 2000-2001 field season; 01-5 = 5th core of the 2001-2002 field season; etc.
ICPMS Surface snow trace-element data measured using an Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometer
2013 Year the files were updated
.csv Comma-separated Value Format

Example File Name: US_ITASE-02_BYRD_2013.csv

Refer to Table 13 for the valid values for the file name variables listed above.

Where:

Table 13. US_ITASE BYRD File Naming Convention
Variable Description
US_ITASE US International Trans-Antarctic Scientific Expedition
xx Field season in which the surface snow sample was collected. For example, 00 = the 2000-2001 field season
BYRD Test core drilled at Byrd Station. See core info table for more info.
2013 Year the files were updated
.csv Comma-separated Value Format

File Size

Files sizes range from 16 KB to 2693 KB.

Volume

The entire data set is approximately 8.5 MB.

Spatial Coverage

Data were collected on the Western Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) and the Eastern Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS). For exact core/pit locations, see the US ITASE Snow Core/Pit Site Map.

Southernmost Latitude: -90.0° S
Northernmost Latitude: -77.68° S
Westernmost Longitude: -76.1° W
Easternmost Longitude: 152.37° E

Temporal Coverage

These US ITASE data were collected during the Antarctic summer from 1999 to 2008. See the core info table for more detailed info. These data were used for reconstruction of sub-annual scale climate variability and changes in the chemistry of the atmosphere over the last 200+ years. Refer to Figure 1.

Parameter or Variable

  • Ion Concentrations of Na+, Ca2+, Mg2+, K+, NH4+, Cl-, NO3-, SO42- (sea salt and non-sea salt), and CH3SO3- (methyl sulfonate) (µg/L)
  • Trace Elements of Sr, Cd, Sb, Cs, Ba, La, Ce, Pr, Nd, Pb, Bi, As, Tl, Ti, V, Cr, Mn, Co, Cu, Zn, Li (ng/L)
    Sm, Eu, Gd, Tb, Dy, Ho, Er, Tm, Yb, Lu, U (pg/L)
    Al, S, Ca, Fe, Na, Mg, K (µg/L)
  • Snow Water Equivalent (cm)

Parameter Description

The researchers analyzed a glaciochemical series of ion concentrations including Na+, Ca2+, Mg2+, K+, NH4+, Cl-, NO3-, SO42- (sea salt and non-sea salt), and CH3SO3- (methyl sulfonate). They studied annual accumulation rates by using Snow Water Equivalents (SWE). They reported concentrations of the ions Na+, Cl-, SO42-, Ca2+, Mg2+, K+, NH4+, NO3- (sea salt and non-sea salt), and CH3SO3- (methyl sulfonate), and in some cases trace elements (Sr, Cd, Sb, Cs, Ba, La, Ce, Pr, Nd, Sm, Eu, Gd, Tb, Dy, Ho, Er, Tm, Yb, Lu, Pb, Bi, U, As, Tl, Al, S, Ca, Ti, V, Cr, Mn, Fe, Co, Cu, Zn, Li, Na, Mg, K). The ionic composition of polar ice cores provides a stratigraphic tool for relative dating that can be extremely effective on the Western Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS). It also allows researchers to document changes in chemical species source emissions and to characterize the major atmospheric circulation systems affecting WAIS. Refer to Tables 14 and 15 for a listing of the Periodic Element Names.

Table 14. Ion Concentrations Studied in the Data Set
Element Symbol
Element Name
Na+
Sodium Ion
Ca2+
Calcium Ion
Mg2+
Magnesium Ion
K+
Potassium Ion
NH4+
Ammonium Ion
Cl-
Chlorine Ion
NO3-
Nitrate Ion
SO42-
Sulfate Ion
CH3SO3-
Methyl sulfonate
Table 15. Trace Elements Studied in the Data Set
Element Symbol
Element Name
Sr
Strontium
Cd
Cadmium
Sb
Antimony
Cs
Caesium
Ba
Barium
La
Lanthanum
Ce
Cerium
Pr
Praseodymium
Nd
Neodymium
Sm
Samarium
Eu
Europium
Gd
Gadolinium
Tb
Terbium
Dy
Dysprosium
Ho
Holmium
Er
Erbium
Tm
Thulium
Yb
Ytterbium
Lu
Lutetium
Pb
Lead
Bi
Bismuth
U
Uranium
As
Arsenic
TI
Thallium
AI
Thallium
S
Sulfur
CA
Calcium
Ti
Titanium
V
Vanadium
Cr
Chromium
Mn
Manganese
Fe
Iron
Co
Iron
Cu
Copper
Zn
Zinc
Li
Lithium
Na
Sodium
Mg
Magnesium
K
Potassium

Sample Data Record

Figure 1 is a sample record of the SouthPole1995_2013.csv data file. There are several different types of data files in this data set.

sample data record

Figure 1. Sample Data Record of the SouthPole1995_2013.csv Data File

3. Data Access and Tools

Get Data

Data are available via FTP.

Software and Tools

The user will need a text editor and spreadsheet software in order to view the data.

4. Data Acquisition and Processing

Data Acquisition Methods

The US ITASE field season involved drilling numerous ice cores and collecting snow pit samples along several traverse segments. Refer to Figure 2. At each core/pit site, a 3-inch diameter (7.6 cm) ice core was drilled up to a depth of 120 m and sampling was taken between 50 m and 70 m. Workers wearing non-particulating suits, polyethylene gloves, and particle masks sampled snow pits and processed ice cores. Samples were stored in precleaned polyethylene containers and stored below -20° C until melting immediately prior to chemical analysis. Major ions were analyzed using ion chromatography. High-resolution chemical analysis requiring 30 to 50 measurements per meter was used to define each core-chemistry year based on peaks in Na+, Ca2+, Mg2+, K+, NH4+, Cl-, NO3-, SO42- (sea salt and non-sea salt), and CH3SO3- (methyl sulfonate).

drill site map

Figure 2. US ITASE Snow Core/Pit Site Map

Sensor or Instrument Description

Data were generated using the University of Maine's continuous melter (UMCoM) system, an Ion Chromatograph (IC) and an Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometer (ICPMS). The data consist of dissolved major ion concentrations and total elemental concentrations at sub-annual resolution. The UMCoM system is housed in a dedicated clean room with HEPA filtered air. Standard clean room procedures are employed during melting. A Wagenbach-style melter head was modified to include a pure Nickel disk that can be easily dismantled for thorough cleaning. The system allows ice and firn to melt without wicking the meltwater into unmelted core. Unlike continuous-flow melter systems in which the meltwater is directly channeled to online instruments for analyses, the UMCoM system collects discrete samples under ultra-clean conditions.

5. References and Related Publications

Bertler, N., Mayewski, P. A., Alberto Aristarain, P. Barrett, S. Becagli, Ronaldo Torma Bernardo, Xiao Cunde, M. Curran, Qin Dahe, D. Dixon, Francisco Adolfo Ferron, H. Fischer, Markus Frey, M. Frezzotti, F. Fundel, Christophe Genthon, R. Gragani, G. Hamilton, M. Handley, Sungmin Hong, E. Isaksson, Ren Jiawen, Kokichi Kamiyama, Satoru Kanamori, Eija Karkas, L. Karlˆf, S. Kaspari, K. Kreutz, A. Kurbatov, E. Meyerson, Hideaki Motoyama, R. Mulvaney, Zhang Mingjun, H .Oerter, E .Osterberg, M. Proposito, A. Pyne, U. Ruth, Jefferson Cardia Simoes, B. Smith, S. Sneed, Kimmo Teinila, F. Traufetter, R. Udisti, Aki Virkkula, Okitsugu Watanabe, B. Williamson, E. Wolff, Li Zhongqin. 2006. Snow Chemistry Across Antarctica. Annals of Glaciology 41, 167-179.

Dixon, D., Mayewski, P. A., Kaspari, S., Sneed, S., and Handley, M. 2004. A 200 Year Sub-annual Record of Sulfate in West Antarctica, from 16 Ice Cores. Annals of Glaciology 39, 545-556.

Dixon, D. A., P .A. Mayewski, I. D. Goodwin, G. J. Marshall, R. Freeman, K. A. Maasch, S. B. Sneed. 2012. An Ice Core Poxy for Northerly Air Mass Incursions into West Antarctica. Int. J. Climatology, 32, 10, 1455-1465. doi:10.1002/joc.2371.

Dixon, D., Mayewski, P. A., Kaspari, S., Sneed, S. and Handley, M. 2005. A 200 Year Sulfate Record from 16 Antarctic Ice Cores and Associations with Southern Ocean Sea-ice Extent. Annals of Glaciology 41, 55-156.

Dixon, D. A., P. A. Mayewski, E. Korotkikh, S. B. Sneed, M. J. Handley, D. S. Introne, T. A. Scambos. 2013. Variations in Snow and Firn Chemistry Along US ITASE Traverses and the Effect of Surface Glazing. The Cryosphere, 7, 2, 515-535. doi:10.5194/tc-7-515-2013.

Kaspari, S., Mayewski, P.A., Dixon, D., Spikes, V.B., Sneed, S.B., Handley, M.J., and Hamilton. 2004. Climate Variability in West Antarctica Derived from Annual Accumulation Rate Records from ITASE Firn/Ice Cores. Annals of Glaciology 39, 585-594.

Kaspari, S., Mayewski, P. A., Dixon, D., Sneed, S. B., and Handley, M. J. 2005. Sources and Transport Pathways for Marine Aerosol Species into West Antarctica. Annals of Glaciology 42, 1-9.

Mayewski, P. A., K. A. Maasch, J. W. C. White, E. Meyerson, I. Goodwin, V. I. Morgan., T. Van Ommen, M. A. J. Curran, J. Souney, and K. Kreutz. 2005. A 700 Year Record of Southern Hemisphere Extra-tropical Climate Variability. Annals of Glaciology 39, 127-132.

Mayewski, P. A., Frezzotti, M., Bertler, N., Van Ommen, T., Hamilton, G. H., Jacka, J., Welch, B., Frey, M., Dahe, Q., Ren, J., Simoes, J., Fily, M., Oerter, H., Nishio, F., Iasaksson, E., Mulvaney, R., Holmund, P., Lipenkov, V. and Goodwin, I. 2006. The International Trans-Antarctic Scientific Expedition (ITASE) - An Overview. Annals of Glaciology 41, 180-185.

Mayewski, P. A., Maasch, K., Yan, Y., Kang, S., Meyerson, E., Sneed, S., Kaspari, S., Dixon, D., Morgan, V., Van Ommen, T., and Curran, M. 2006. Solar Forcing of the Polar Atmosphere. Annals of Glaciology 41, 147-154.

Mayewski, P. A. and Maasch, K. 2006. Recent Warming Inconsistent with Natural Association between Temperature and Atmospheric Circulation Over the Last 2000 Years. Climate of the Past (Discussions), on line: http://www.copernicus.org/EGU/cp/cpd/2/327/cpd-2-327.htm.

Sneed, S. B., P. A. Mayewski and D. A. Dixon. 2011. An Emerging Technique: Multi-ice-core Multi-parameter Correlations with Antarctic Sea-ice Extent.Annals of Glaciology 52, 57, 347-354. doi: 10.3189/172756411795931822.

Steig, E. J., P. A. Mayewski, D. Dixon, S. Kaspari, M. Frey, D. P. Schneider, S. A. Arcone, G. Hamilton, B. Spikes, M. R. Albert, D. A. Meese, A. Gow, C. A. Shuman, J. White, S. Sneed, J. Flaherty, M. Wumkes and US ITASE Project Members. 2006. High-resolution Ice Cores from US ITASE (West Antarctica): Development and Validation of Chronologies and Determination of Precision and Accuracy. Annals of Glaciology 41, 77-84.

Yan, Y., Mayewski, P. A., Kang, S., and Meyerson, E. 2005. An Ice Core Proxy for Antarctic Circumpolar Wind intensity. Annals of Glaciology 41, 121-130.

Related Data Collections

6. Document Information

Acronyms and Abbreviations

The acronyms used in this document are listed in Table 1.

Table 1. Acronyms and Abbreviations
Acronym Description
cm Centimeters
CWA Central West Antarctic
ITASE International Trans Antarctic Scientific Expedition
µg/L Micrograms per Liter
RIDS Ross Ice Drainage System
SWE Snow Water Equivalent
US ITASE US International Trans-Antarctic Scientific Expedition
WAIS Western Antarctic Ice Sheet

Document Creation Date

July 2013

Document Revision Date

.....

Document URL

http://nsidc.org/data/docs/agdc/nsidc0273_mayewski/index.html