Aeolian sources of rare earth elements to the Western Pacific Ocean Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • Rare earth element (REE) determinations have been made on 25 surface seawater samples on a longitudinal transect from Asia to North America within a latitudinal band of 24-32 degree N. REE concentrations are significantly higher close to Asia and decrease to the lowest recorded for surface waters in the world's oceans at the 180 degree International Dateline. REE patterns also vary systematically and near Asia are similar to patterns for Chinese Loess. Thus, contrary to previous inferences based on Nd isotopes, atmospheric deposition of mineral dust from the Asian continent significantly affects the REE composition of western Pacific Ocean sea water.

publication date

  • December 1999