Accession Number:



Snowpack Measurements Suggest Role for Multi-Year Sea Ice Regions in Arctic Atmospheric Bromine and Chlorine Chemistry

Descriptive Note:

Journal Article - Open Access

Corporate Author:

Report Date:


Pagination or Media Count:



As sources of reactive halogens, snowpacks in sea ice regions control the oxidative capacity of the Arctic atmosphere. However, measurements of snowpack halide concentrations remain sparse, particularly in the high Arctic, limiting our understanding of and ability to parameterize snowpack participation in tropospheric halogen chemistry. To address this gap, we measured concentrations of chloride, bromide, and sodium in snow samples collected during polar spring above remote multi-year sea ice MYI and first-year sea ice FYI north of Greenland and Alaska, as well as in the central Arctic, and compared these measurements to a larger dataset collected in the Alaskan coastal Arctic by Krnavek et al. 2012. Regardless of sea ice region, these surface snow samples generally featured lower salinities, compared to coastal snow. Surface snow in FYI regions was typically enriched in bromide and chloride compared to seawater, indicating snowpack deposition of bromine and chlorine-containing trace gases and an ability of the snowpack to participate further in bromine and chlorine activation processes.

Subject Categories:

  • Snow, Ice and Permafrost
  • Inorganic Chemistry

Distribution Statement: