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MAIN PAGE > Journal "Arctic and Antarctica" > Contents of Issue № 01/2017
Contents of Issue № 01/2017
Natural resources of the Arctic and Antarctica
Budantseva N.A., Vasil'chuk Yu.K. - Geochemical composition of Holocene ice wedge casts of the Southern and Central Yamal Peninsula pp. 1-22


Abstract: The authors study the Holocene syngenetic ice wedge casts of five regions of the Yamal Peninsula: within the thick peat bogs in the Shchuchya River valley and near the Seyakha settlement, in the floodplain of the Erkutayakha and Lakkatoso Rivers and within floodplain sediments of the Ob Bay in vicinity of the Mys Kamenny settlement in eastern coast of Yamal Peninsula. The width of the top of ice wedges in peatlands varies from 0.5 to 1.6 m, their height is from 2 to 5 m, the width of the ice wedges in the floodplain and marsh and swamp also varies from 0.5 to 1.8 m, the visible height is not more than 2 meters. Samples of ice were taken from ice wedges vertically and horizontally. To study the genesis of the water that participated in the formation of Holocene ice wedge casts and ice lenses from the enclosing sediments, the author analyze the content of trace elements and heavy metals. The analysis of trace elements and heavy metals is based on atomic absorption spectrophotometer (AAS-3) at the V.V. Dokuchaev Soil Science Institute. The mineralization and chemical composition of water-soluble salts in segregated and ice wedges are determined in the same place. The radiocarbon dating of the surrounding sediments aging of the ice wedges is carried out at the Geological Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences. Holocene ice wedges are ultra-fresh and fresh, their mineralization varies from 20 to 200 mg / l, hydrocarbonates and calcium dominate in the ion composition. Participation of chlorides in the ice wedges on terraces indicates the influence of marine aerosols, the same for the ice wedges on the floodplain means the direct participation water of Ob Bay in their formation. The increasing of iron ions in some fragments of ice wedges, comparable to their content in segregated ice in the peat bog, may indicate a periodic participation of swamp waters in the formation of ice wedges.
Vasil'chuk Yu.K., Budantseva N.A., Vasil'chuk D.Yu. - Heavy metals and trace elements in the Late Pleistocene ice-wedge casts of Northern Yakutia pp. 23-34


Abstract: The subject of the study is the content of trace elements (heavy metals and metalloids) in the Late Pleistocene ice-wedge casts of three yedoma blocks of Northern Yakutia: Kular, Bison and Duvanny Yar. Yedoma deposits of Duvanny Yar are exposed on the right bank in the lower course of the Kolyma River, near the Duvanny riffle, in the Kolyma Lowland. It is drained by the northward flowing Kolyma River, the sixth largest river flowing into the Arctic Ocean. The lowland is bordered by the North Anyuy Range to the east, the Yukagir Plateau to the south, the Alazeya Plateau to the southwest and the Ulakhan-Sis Ridge to the northwest. The Late Pleistocene Bison yedoma complex is located on the right bank of the Kolyma River, in the mouth of the Lakeevskaya Channel 15 km below the Duvanny riffle. Yedoma near the Kular village in the foothills of the Kular range is located on the mild slope of southern aspect in the valley of the Burguaat creek in the form of an inclined slope extending over a slope of more than 1 km. The main reseacrh method is atomic absorption spectroscopy, performed in the V.V. Dokuchaev Soil Science Institute. Samples of ice wedges were sampled in the field in polyethylene bags, melted at a temperature not higher than 15 °C and poured into chemically inert plastic bottles. The main conclusions of the study are as follows: a) in the late Pleistocene ice-wedge casts of the Bison and Duvanny Yar sections, lithophile elements (Mn, Sr) are significantly distinguished in comparison with the Kular section; b) the content of Sr in the ice of the Bison section is below the world’s average for surface water; c) Mn and Fe, highly mobile in gley reducting medium, are represented in the ice of the Duvanny Yar and Bison sections in much larger quantities than in the Kular section; it can be connected with different redox conditions during the formation of ice wedges. Probably in Kular the conditions were oxidative (for a long time) or more alkaline than in other sections, and in Duvanny Yar and Bison – mostly gley reducing and acid.
Chizhova Yu.N., Budantseva N.A., Vasil'chuk Yu.K. - Heavy metals of the Polar Urals and the Caucasus glaciers pp. 35-46


Abstract: The authors of the present work consider heavy metals content in the snow cover and glacial ice of the Polar Urals and the vicinity of the Mt. Elbrus region (Central Caucasus). In order to define the background hydrochemical constitution of the snow cover of the Polar Ural region in 1999, the authors study three snowfields, near the Polar Ural village, 2.5 km and 5 km from it; in the winter of 2003 near the Polarny settlement the authors explored the structure of the snow layer in the trial pit. In 2000, a small glacier (Glacier No.1) located in the on the slope of the southern aspect, was studied on the slope of the Small Paipudynsky ridge. In the Central Caucasus, studies were carried out on the glacier of Garabashi in the southern slope of Elbrus, the snow layers were studied during the summer and winter seasons: in the summer of 1998, in January 2001 and in June 2001. Glacier ice of the Greater Azau glacier was also studied. Analytic measurements of the trace elements content (Fe, Zn, Cu, Mn) were performed by atomic absorption spectroscopy at the V.V.Dokuchaev Soil Science Institute. The concentrations of trace elements in snow and glacial ice of the Polar Urals are small, averaging 0.005 to 0.02 mg / l, among the measured Fe, Zn, Cu, Mn, the highest concentrations are typical for Mn (up to 0.05 mg / l). An insignificant increase in the concentrations of heavy metals in the winter snow-summer snow-glacial ice series was noted. Dependences of the concentration of heavy metals on the morphological species of ice were not detected. For the snow cover and the glacial ice of Garabashi glacier and the adjacent slope there is also a certain tendency of increasing concentrations in the winter snow series to summer surface snow and to infiltration ice. The main minor elements in the snow and ice of the Garabashi glacier in the Caucasus are zinc and iron, the concentrations of which range from less than 0.02 to 0.6 mg / l (iron in infiltration ice) and from 0.01 to 0.22 in ice. The maximum content of heavy metals is confined to the horizons of infiltration ice. In seasonal winter and summer snow, the concentrations of almost all measured trace elements range from less than 0.01 to 0.03 mg / l. In the ice of the Big Azau glacier in the Elbrus region, the concentrations of trace elements are extremely low (less than 0.005 mg / l).
Climates of the Arctic and Antarctica
Surkova G.V., Krylov A.A. - Changes of hydrothermal climate resources of the Arctic in the context of global warming of the 21st century pp. 47-61


Abstract: The author studies the change of climate resources of the Arctic in the context of global warming, forecast in the 21st century. The authors pay special attention to the values of climate resources, calculated on the base of temperature and precipitation values. The article studies daily points of extremum of surface air temperature, yearly amounts of air temperatures in different ranges and the longevity of periods with such temperatures, fuel performance index, amount and type of precipitations at different air temperatures, and the number of days with such precipitations. Climate resources are calculated on the base of a climate forecast of a group of climate models of the CMIP5 project for the RCP8.5. scenario. To estimate climate resources, the authors use daily model data about air temperature and precipitation total for the period of 1950-2100. in latitudinal zone of 60-90 degrees of north latitude. The authors of the present study are the first to acquire the results of a complex forecast of climate resources of the Arctic. The study shows that, in the context of global warming, the spatial heterogeneity of the forecast anomalies of climate resources is well-defined. The most vivid changes of hydrothermal climate resources by the end of the 21st century are expected above the Northern Atlantic, the seas of Western Europe, the Barents and the Chukchi seas. The least significant changes are expected above Greenland. 
Permafrost and ground ice of the Arctic
Vasil'chuk Yu.K. - Cyclocryostratigraphy of yedoma. Part 1. pp. 62-83


Abstract: The author formulates a new line of research of permafrost and, in particular, homogeneous yedoma, - cyclocryostratigraphy. Cyclo-cryostratigraphy studies the rotation of different vertical frozen soil units of permafrost sediments in yedoma sections. The study demonstrates the cyclicity in the flysch formations in pre-Quaternary and Quaternary sediments on the Black Sea coast, near the Novomikhailovskoye settlement., in the Berriasian-Valanginian exposure near the village of Konakhkend, Azerbaijan, in the Eocene sediments of the Navagir range, the northwestern spurs of the Caucasus, the Abrau peninsula, in interstratifying sands and sandy loams in the Nagym section in the mouth of the Olenyok channel. The cyclicity in the vertical arrangement of pseudomorphs and subterranean veins outside the permafrost zone has been investigated. The main research methods are lithological, cryostratigraphical, radiocarbon, isotope, geochemical. The author detects cyclicity during the field research, and verifies its parameters with analytical determinations. The main results of the study include the successive transition from flysch cycles to the cyclicity of clays and cyclostratigraphic features of paleo-sections with pseudomorphs and ground vein. The author analyzes mesocyclic bedding of ground veins and pseudomorphs in the sections of Western Europe: Aschersleben in Germany, Kesselt, Remicourt and Harmignies in Belgium. The author analyzes stratification of pseudomorphs in the Late Pleistocene stratum in the Grove section in the north of the Netherlands. In the north of Italy, in the valley of the Po river, a multi-tier complex of pseudomorphs in loess strata is considered. A scheme for stratification of pseudomorphs in the Kotkino area on the left bank of the Soyma River, the tributary of the Pechora River, is considered.
Vasil'chuk A.K. - Palynospectra and chronology of Holocene polygonal wedge ices of Yamal Peninsula pp. 84-109


Abstract: Holocene wedge ices are widespread within laidas, peat bogs and flood plains of lakes and rivers of the Yamal Peninsula. The aim of the paper is to study palynological characteristic of exposures of wedge ices located at different geomorphological levels. The author estimates realibility of radiocarbon dating of polygonal wedge ices of the base of palynological characteristic and considers the possibility of estimating the idiogenousness of wedge ices on the basis of comparison of palinospectra of wedge ices and their deposits. The author detects several stages of vegetation evolution in this region. The main approach to ice wedge complex study is based on the fact that palynospectra of ices and deposits represent different seasons of pollen accumulation. While subfossil palynospectrum is accumulated during the whole vegetation season and consisits both of local and regional peculiarities of land cover, palinospectra of wedge ices are formed of spring pollen rains and reflect mainly regional characteristics. Reliability of the radiocarbon dating is estimated according to the constitution of Pre-Quaternary pollen in the sample, because it indicates the constitution of aicient penecontemporaneous organic material in the sample indirectly. Main stages of vegetation cover development in Holocene are distinguished on the base of these studies.
Soils of Cold Regios
Vasil'chuk D.Yu., Budantseva N.A., Garankina E.V., Shorkunov I.G., Vasil'chuk Yu.K. - Isotopic and geochemical features of histosols of the Bovanenkovo gas field, the Central Yamal Peninsula pp. 110-126


Abstract: Polygonal tundra histosols are among the most widespread soils of the Central Yamal Peninsula (around Bovanenkovo) together with Gleysols and Cryosols. The authors study the trench crossing the peat polygons on the surface of the third terrace near Bovanenkovo village. The authors study the transformation of sub-types of histosols from oligotrophic to eutrophic histic horizons. It is impossible to properly describe the soils of those flat-topped polygonal landscapes, according to the current classification of Russian soils, due to the small variety of organic horizons and strict criteria for their differentiation. The authors assigned Sphagnum horizon to the horizon T, and the underlying layer of eutrophic peat – to the TE horizon. Thus the authors classify such type of soil as eutrophic peat despite the presence of oligotrophic peat components. The age of peat was ascertained using the scintillation radiocarbon methodic. Carbon dioxide emission was measured by a portable gas-analyzer. The content of oxygen, carbon and nitrogen in the peat was measured as well as the composition of carbon stable isotopes . The considered Histosols are aged 2,5 thousand years. At the top of the polygonal mound in the profile the authors trace an increase in sulfur (apparently associated with the darker colored peat layer) and nitrogen content and a decrease in the carbon content. At the same time local maximum of the carbon isotope composition was observed. The carbon content varies in general from 45 to 28%. The carbon isotope composition is from –25.5 to –28 ‰, which is close to the values in organic horizons of soils in the Arctic regions.
Grounds of Cold Regios
Maslakov A.A. - The results of active layer studies near Lorino settlement, Eastern Chukotka pp. 127-139


Abstract: The paper contains the results of active layer studies in Lorino monitoring site (Eastern Chukotka, Russia), conducted in framework of the Circumpolar Active Layer Monitoring (CALM) program during 2010-2015. The study site includes tundra landscapes of Eastern Chukotka coastal lowlands. The main purpose of the paper is to obtain spatial and temporal patterns of seasonal melting distribution and reveal the main natural factors defining active layer depth within study site. The author demonstrates the predominance of thermal forcing in active layer development, which was strongly complicated by local (microrelief, vegetation, soil moisture, etc.) conditions. These factors determined high spatial and temporal variability of active layer thickness within single grid (100×100 m). The study also reveals the lack of statistical data on natural characteristics and the need for further detailed studies of seasonal melting process.
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