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30,000 Years of Cosmic Dust in Antarctic Ice

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Science  28 Jul 2006:
Vol. 313, Issue 5786, pp. 491
DOI: 10.1126/science.1127469

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Abstract

Polar ice provides an archive for the influx of cosmic dust. Here, we present a high-resolution, glacial-to-interglacial record of cosmic dust using helium isotope analysis of the European Project for Ice Coring in Antarctica (EPICA) ice core drilled in Dronning Maud Land. We obtained a relatively constant 3He flux over the past 30,000 years. This finding excludes 3He as a pacemaker of late Pleistocene glacial cycles. Rather, it supports 3He as a constant flux parameter in paleoclimatic studies. A last glacial-to-Holocene shift of the 4He/non‐sea salt Ca2+ ratio appears to indicate a glacial-to-interglacial change in the terrestrial dust source.

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