Physics of Ice Core Records / edited by Takeo Hondoh;Proceedings


Air bubbles and air-hydrate crystals in the Vostok ice core

Lipenkov, Vladimir Ya.

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The geometrical properties of air-bubble and air-hydrate ensembles in the 3310-m deep Vostok core and in other ice cores were studied. The principle results are the following: 1) the size and abundance of air bubbles in polar ice depend on the temperature and accumulation rate prevailing over the time of the snow-ice transformation, 2) the climate signal imposed on the bubble properties at pore close-off is only slightly modified in the course of the bubble-hydrate transition (500–1250 m at present time at Vostok) and in the first, transient, phase of air-hydrate crystal growth (1150–1500 m); as a consequence, the last four glacial-interglacial cycles are resolved in variations of the number and size of air inclusions along the Vostok ice core, and 3) the air-bubble and air-hydrate records from polar ice cores can provide an independent experimental constraint on the temperature-accumulation relations in the past.