18 Oct 2023
 | 18 Oct 2023
Status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal ESSD.

Spatial and temporal stable water isotope data from the upper snowpack at the EastGRIP camp site, NE Greenland sampled in summer 2018

Alexandra M. Zuhr, Sonja Wahl, Hans Christian Steen-Larsen, Maria Hörhold, Hanno Meyer, Vasileios Gkinis, and Thomas Laepple

Abstract. Stable water isotopes stored in snow, firn and ice are used to reconstruct environmental parameters. The imprint of these parameters at the snow surface as well as their preservation in the upper snowpack is determined by a number of processes influencing the recording of the environmental signal.

Here, we present a dataset of approximately 3,800 snow samples analysed for their stable water isotope composition which were obtained during the summer season at the deep drilling site of the East Greenland Ice Core Project in northeast Greenland. Sampling was carried out every third day between 14 May and 3 August 2018 along a 39 m long transect. Three depth intervals in the top 10 cm were sampled on 30 positions with a higher resolution closer to the surface (0–1 cm and 1–4 cm depth vs. 4–10 cm). The sample analysis was carried out at two renowned stable water isotope laboratories and produced isotope data with an overall highest uncertainty of 0.09 ‰ for δ18O and 0.8 ‰ for δD.

This unique dataset shows strongest δ18O variability closest to the surface, damped and delayed variations in the lowest layer and a trend towards increasing homogeneity towards the end of the season, especially in the deepest layer. Additional information on the snow height and its temporal changes suggests a non-uniform spatial imprint of the seasonal climatic information in this area potentially following the stratigraphic noise of the surface.

The data can be used to study the relation between snow height (changes) as well as the imprint and preservation of the isotopic composition at a site with 10–14 cm w.eq. yr-1 accumulation. The high temporal resolution sampling allows additional analyses on (post-)depositional processes, such as vapour-snow exchange. The data can be accessed at (Zuhr et al., 2023).

Alexandra M. Zuhr et al.

Status: open (until 02 Jan 2024)

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  • RC1: 'Comment on essd-2023-136', Anonymous Referee #1, 27 Nov 2023 reply

Alexandra M. Zuhr et al.

Data sets

Stable water isotopes in snow from a regular sampling of the upper 10 cm at the EastGRIP deep drilling site during the 2018 summer season Alexandra Zuhr, Sonja Wahl, Hans Christian Steen-Larsen, Anne-Katrine Faber, Melanie Behrens, Tobias Zolles, Hanno Meyer, Vasileios Gkinis, Mikaela Weiner, Sina Sporr, and Thomas Laepple

Alexandra M. Zuhr et al.


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Short summary
We present stable water isotope data from the accumulation zone of the Greenland ice sheet. A spatial sampling scheme covering 39 m and three depth layers was carried out between 14 May and 3 August 2018. The data suggest spatial and temporal variability related to meteorological conditions, such as wind-driven snow redistribution and vapour-snow exchange processes. The data can be used to study the formation of the stable water isotopes signal, which is seen as a climate proxy.