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Climate of the Past An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
Clim. Past, 9, 1221-1232, 2013
© Author(s) 2013. This work is distributed
under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Research Article
13 Jun 2013
Greenland ice core evidence of the 79 AD Vesuvius eruption
C. Barbante1,2,*, N. M. Kehrwald2,*, P. Marianelli3, B. M. Vinther4, J. P. Steffensen4, G. Cozzi1, C. U. Hammer4, H. B. Clausen4, and M.-L. Siggaard-Andersen4
1Institute for the Dynamics of the Environmental Processes, CNR, University of Venice, 30123 Venice, Italy
2Department of Environmental Sciences, Informatics and Statistics, University of Venice, Ca' Foscari, 30123 Venice, Italy
3Department of Earth Sciences, University of Pisa, 56126 Pisa, Italy
4Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen, 2100 Copenhagen, Denmark
*These authors contributed equally to this work.

Abstract. Volcanic tephra are independent age horizons and can synchronize strata of various paleoclimate records including ice and sediment cores. The Holocene section of the Greenland Ice Core Project (GRIP) ice core is dated by multi-parameter annual layer counting, and contains peaks in acidity, SO42− and microparticle concentrations at a depth of 429.1 to 429.3 m, which have not previously been definitively ascribed to a volcanic eruption. Here, we identify tephra particles and determine that volcanic shards extracted from a depth of 429.3 m in the GRIP ice core are likely due to the 79 AD Vesuvius eruption. The chemical composition of the tephra particles is consistent with the K-phonolitic composition of the Vesuvius juvenile ejecta and differs from the chemical composition of other major eruptions (≥ VEI 4) between 50–100 AD.

Citation: Barbante, C., Kehrwald, N. M., Marianelli, P., Vinther, B. M., Steffensen, J. P., Cozzi, G., Hammer, C. U., Clausen, H. B., and Siggaard-Andersen, M.-L.: Greenland ice core evidence of the 79 AD Vesuvius eruption, Clim. Past, 9, 1221-1232, doi:10.5194/cp-9-1221-2013, 2013.
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