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Atmospheric Measurement Techniques An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union

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https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2017-387
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
Research article
09 Jan 2018
Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. A revision of the manuscript is under review for the journal Atmospheric Measurement Techniques (AMT).
Calculating uncertainty for the RICE ice core continuous flow analysis water isotope record
Elizabeth D. Keller1, W. Troy Baisden1,a, Nancy A. N. Bertler1,2, B. Daniel Emanuelsson1,2, Silvia Canessa1, and Andy Phillips1 1National Isotope Centre, GNS Science, Lower Hutt, New Zealand
2Antarctic Research Centre, Victoria University of Wellington, Wellington, New Zealand
anow at: University of Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand
Abstract. We describe a novel approach to the calibration and uncertainty estimation of a high-resolution continuous flow analysis (CFA) water isotope (δ2H, δ18O) record from the Roosevelt Island Climate Evolution (RICE) Antarctic ice core. Our method establishes robust uncertainty estimates for CFA δ2H and δ18O measurements, comparable to those reported for discrete sample δ2H and δ18O analysis. Data were calibrated using a time-weighted two-point linear calibration with two standards measured both before and after continuously melting three or four meters of ice core. The error at each data point was calculated as the quadrature sum of three factors: Allan variance, scatter over the averaging interval, and general calibration accuracy. Final mean total error for the entire record is δ2H = 0.74 ‰ and δ18O = 0.21 ‰. The quality over the length of the dataset is variable, likely due to a combination of poorer ice quality at lower depths, interruptions in the CFA measurements due to ice breaks and equipment failure, the build-up over time of residual drill fluid, and leaks or valve degradation in the system. Despite the somewhat uneven system performance, this represents a significant achievement in precision of high-resolution CFA water isotope measurement.
Citation: Keller, E. D., Baisden, W. T., Bertler, N. A. N., Emanuelsson, B. D., Canessa, S., and Phillips, A.: Calculating uncertainty for the RICE ice core continuous flow analysis water isotope record, Atmos. Meas. Tech. Discuss., https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2017-387, in review, 2018.
Elizabeth D. Keller et al.
Elizabeth D. Keller et al.
Elizabeth D. Keller et al.

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Short summary
We describe a novel approach for robust uncertainty estimation of a high-resolution continuous flow analysis (CFA) water isotope (δ2H, δ18O) record from the Roosevelt Island Climate Evolution (RICE) Antarctic ice core. The error at each data point was calculated as the quadrature sum of three factors: Allan variance, scatter over the averaging interval, and general calibration accuracy. The resulting mean total error over the entire record is δ2H = 0.74 ‰ and δ18O = 0.21 ‰.
We describe a novel approach for robust uncertainty estimation of a high-resolution continuous...
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