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Dissolved Inorganic Radiocarbon in the Northwest Pacific Continental Margin

  • Tiantian Ge (a1), Xuchen Wang (a1) (a2), Jing Zhang (a3), Chunle Luo (a1) and Yuejun Xue (a1)...

This article presents a modified method for extraction of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) from seawater for radiocarbon measurement by accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS). Standard tests indicate that the extraction efficiencies of DIC are >96%, and the respective precisions of Δ14C-DIC and δ13C-DIC analyses are 6‰ and 0.1‰ or better. Using the method, we report Δ14C-DIC profiles collected from the shelf and slope in the East China Sea (ECS) of the northwest Pacific Ocean. Both the DIC concentration and Δ14C-DIC in the shelf and slope regions seem primarily affected by the Kuroshio Current. It is estimated that 54–65% of the bottom water in the shelf region could be from the intrusion of Kuroshio intermediate water, which carries a high concentration and low Δ14C values of DIC, and which influenced the DIC and its 14C signature on the shelf. Compared with the Δ14C-DIC profiles at other sites in the northwest Pacific reported previously, it appears that the Δ14C-DIC distributions are mainly controlled by the major oceanic currents in the region, and large variations in Δ14C-DIC occurred mostly in the upper 800 m of the water column. The similarity of Δ14C-DIC at depth suggests that the deep-water circulation patterns have been relatively stable in the northwest Pacific Ocean in the last 20 yr.

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