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Neodymium isotopic characterization of Ross Sea Bottom Water and its advection through the southern South Pacific

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Basak,  Chandranath
Max Planck Research Group Marine Isotope Geochemistry, Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology, Max Planck Society;

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Pahnke,  Katharina
Max Planck Research Group Marine Isotope Geochemistry, Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology, Max Planck Society;

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Basak, C., Pahnke, K., Frank, M., Lamy, F., & Gersonde, R. (2015). Neodymium isotopic characterization of Ross Sea Bottom Water and its advection through the southern South Pacific. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 419: 1, pp. 211-221.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0001-C433-8
Abstract
Since the inception of the international GEOTRACES program, studies investigating the distribution of trace elements and their isotopes in the global ocean have significantly increased. In spite of this large-scale effort, the distribution of neodymium isotopes (143Nd/144Nd, εNdεNd) and concentrations ([Nd]) in the high latitude South Pacific is still understudied, specifically north of the Antarctic Polar Front (APF). Here we report dissolved Nd isotopes and concentrations from 11 vertical water column profiles from the South Pacific between South America and New Zealand and across the Antarctic frontal system. Results confirm that Ross Sea Bottom Water (RSBW) is represented by an εNdεNd value of View the MathML source∼−7, and for the first time show that these Nd characteristics can be traced into the Southeast Pacific until progressive mixing with ambient Lower Circumpolar Deep Water (LCDW) dilutes this signal north of the APF. That is, εNdεNd behaves conservatively in RSBW, opening a path for studies of past RSBW behavior. Neodymium concentrations show low surface concentrations and a linear increase with depth north of the APF. South of the APF, surface [Nd] is high and increases with depth but remains almost constant below ∼1000 m. This vertical and spatial [Nd] pattern follows the southward shoaling density surfaces of the Southern Ocean and hence suggests supply of Nd to the upper ocean through upwelling of Nd-rich deep water. Low particle abundance due to reduced opal production and seasonal sea ice cover likely contributes to the maintenance of the high upper ocean [Nd] south of the APF. This suggests a dominant lateral transport component on [Nd] and a reduced vertical control on Nd concentrations in the South Pacific south of the APF.