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dc.contributor.authorBaccolo, G
dc.contributor.authorŁokas, E
dc.contributor.authorGaca, P
dc.contributor.authorMassabò, D
dc.contributor.authorAmbrosini, R
dc.contributor.authorAzzoni, RS
dc.contributor.authorClason, C
dc.contributor.authorDi Mauro, B
dc.contributor.authorFranzetti, A
dc.contributor.authorNastasi, M
dc.contributor.authorPrata, M
dc.contributor.authorPrati, P
dc.contributor.authorPrevitali, E
dc.contributor.authorDelmonte, B
dc.contributor.authorMaggi, V

<jats:p>Abstract. Cryoconite is rich in natural and artificial radioactivity, but a discussion about its ability to accumulate radionuclides is lacking. A characterization of cryoconite from two Alpine glaciers is presented here. Results confirm that cryoconite is significantly more radioactive than the matrices usually adopted for the environmental monitoring of radioactivity, such as lichens and mosses, with activity concentrations exceeding 10 000 Bq kg−1 for single radionuclides. This makes cryoconite an ideal matrix to investigate the deposition and occurrence of radioactive species in glacial environments. In addition, cryoconite can be used to track environmental radioactivity sources. We have exploited atomic and activity ratios of artificial radionuclides to identify the sources of the anthropogenic radioactivity accumulated in our samples. The signature of cryoconite from different Alpine glaciers is compatible with the stratospheric global fallout and Chernobyl accident products. Differences are found when considering other geographic contexts. A comparison with data from literature shows that Alpine cryoconite is strongly influenced by the Chernobyl fallout, while cryoconite from other regions is more impacted by events such as nuclear test explosions and satellite reentries. To explain the accumulation of radionuclides in cryoconite, the glacial environment as a whole must be considered, and particularly the interaction between ice, meltwater, cryoconite and atmospheric deposition. We hypothesize that the impurities originally preserved into ice and mobilized with meltwater during summer, including radionuclides, are accumulated in cryoconite because of their affinity for organic matter, which is abundant in cryoconite. In relation to these processes, we have explored the possibility of exploiting radioactivity to date cryoconite. </jats:p>

dc.publisherCopernicus GmbH
dc.subject37 Earth Sciences
dc.subject3709 Physical Geography and Environmental Geoscience
dc.subject14 Life Below Water
dc.titleCryoconite: an efficient accumulator of radioactive fallout in glacial environments
plymouth.publication-statusPublished online
plymouth.journalThe Cryosphere
plymouth.organisational-group/Plymouth/Faculty of Science and Engineering
plymouth.organisational-group/Plymouth/Faculty of Science and Engineering/School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences
plymouth.organisational-group/Plymouth/REF 2021 Researchers by UoA
plymouth.organisational-group/Plymouth/REF 2021 Researchers by UoA/UoA14 Geography and Environmental Studies
plymouth.organisational-group/Plymouth/Research Groups
plymouth.organisational-group/Plymouth/Research Groups/Centre for Research in Environment and Society (CeRES)
plymouth.organisational-group/Plymouth/Research Groups/Centre for Research in Environment and Society (CeRES)/CeRES (Reporting)
plymouth.organisational-group/Plymouth/Users by role
plymouth.organisational-group/Plymouth/Users by role/Academics
plymouth.organisational-group/Plymouth/Users by role/Researchers in ResearchFish submission
dc.rights.embargoperiodNot known
rioxxterms.typeJournal Article/Review

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