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Paleo Slide Set: Polar Ice Cores
Summer and winter core layers
There are two primary sources for this dust. During the dry northern summer, particulates from Arctic Canada and coastal Greenland are carried by wind currents and deposited on the Greenland ice sheet. In addition to this seasonal influx of dust, gigantic volcanic eruptions anywhere on the globe can also spew enormous quantities of dust into the atmosphere. Eventually, if atmospheric conditions are right, some of this dust may find its way onto the Greenland ice sheet. These dust layers are extremely important because they have allowed scientists to date the GISP2 core more accurately than most previous cores.

Photo Credits:
Anthony Gow
United States Army Corps of Engineers, Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory.
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Last Modified: 12 October 2001

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