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© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 19 Jun 2019

Submitted as: research article | 19 Jun 2019

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This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP).

Diurnal cycle of iodine and mercury concentrations in Svalbard surface snow

Andrea Spolaor1, Elena Barbaro1, David Cappelletti2, Clara Turetta1, Mauro Mazzola3, Fabio Giardi4, Mats P. Björkman5, Federico Lucchetta6, Federico Dallo1, Katrine Aspmo Pfaffhuber7, Hélène Angot8, Aurelien Dommergue9, Marion Maturilli10, Alfonso Saiz-Lopez11, Carlo Barbante6,1, and Warren R. L. Cairns1 Andrea Spolaor et al.
  • 1Institute for the Dynamics of Environmental Processes, IDPA-CNR, Campus Scientifico Via Torino 155, 30172 Mestre, Venice, Italy
  • 2Dipartimento di Chimica, Biologia e Biotecnologie, Università degli Studi di Perugia I-06123 Perugia, Italy
  • 3National Research Council, Institute of Atmospheric Sciences and Climate, CNR-ISAC, Via P. Gobetti 101, Bologna, Italy
  • 4Chemistry Department – Analytical Chemistry, Scientific Pole, University of Florence, Via della Lastruccia 3, I-50019 Sesto Fiorentino (Florence), Italy
  • 5University of Gothenburg, Department of Earth Sciences, Box 460, 40530 Göteborg, Sweden
  • 6Ca' Foscari University of Venice, Department of Environmental Sciences, Informatics and Statistics, Santa Marta – Dorsoduro 2137, 30123 Venice, Italy
  • 7NILU – Norwegian Institute for Air Research, Kjeller, Norway
  • 8Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research (INSTAAR), University of Colorado, Boulder, USA
  • 9Institut des Géosciences de l'Environnement, Univ. Grenoble Alpes/CNRS, F 38041 Grenoble, France
  • 10Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research, Potsdam, Germany
  • 11Department of Atmospheric Chemistry and Climate, Institute of Physical Chemistry Rocasolano, CSIC, Madrid, Spain

Abstract. Sunlit snow is highly photochemically active and plays an important role in the exchange of gas-phase species between the cryosphere to the atmosphere. Here, we investigate the behaviour of two selected species in surface snow: mercury (Hg) and iodine (I). Hg can deposit year-round and accumulate in the snowpack. However, photo-induced re-emission of gas phase Hg from the surface has been widely reported. Iodine is active in atmosphere new particle formation, especially in the marine boundary layer, and in the destruction of atmospheric ozone. It can also undergo photochemical re-emission. Although previous studies indicate possible post-depositional processes, little is known about the diurnal behaviour of these two species and their interaction in surface snow. The mechanisms are still poorly constrained and no field experiments have been performed in different seasons to investigate the magnitude of re-emission processes. Three high temporal resolution (hourly samples) 3 days long sampling campaign were carried out near Ny-Ålesund (Svalbard) to study the behaviour of mercury and iodine in surface snow under different sunlight and environmental conditions (24 h-darkness, 24 h-sunlight and day/night cycles). Our results indicate a clearly different behaviour of Hg and I in surface snow during the different campaign. The day/night experiments demonstrate the existence of a diurnal cycle in surface snow for Hg and iodine, indicating that these species are indeed influenced by the daily solar radiation cycle. Differently bromine did not show any diurnal cycle. The diurnal cycle disappeared also for Hg and iodine during the 24 h-sunlight period and during 24 h-darkness experiments supporting the idea of the occurrence (absence) of a continuous recycling/exchange at the snow-air interface. These results demonstrate that this surface snow recycling is seasonally dependent, through sunlight. They also highlight the non-negligible role that snowpack emissions have on ambient air concentrations and potentially on iodine-induced atmospheric nucleation processes.

Andrea Spolaor et al.
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Status: final response (author comments only)
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Andrea Spolaor et al.
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