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Effects of ENSO on the major ion record of a Qomolangma (Mount Everest) ice core

  • Hao Xu (a1) (a2), Shugui Hou (a1), Hongxi Pang (a1) and Chaomin Wang (a1)


Correlations between a 1000 year record of the major ions in a 108.83 m ice core from East Rongbuk Glacier (28°01’N, 86°58’E; 6518ma.s.l.) on the northeast slope of Qomolangma (Mount Everest) and the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) were examined to investigate possible links between the ice-core records of the southern Tibetan Plateau (TP) and El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO). The results show that years with the highest crustal ion concentrations and lowest marine ion concentrations corresponded with a low SOI, and vice versa. Cross wavelet and wavelet coherence analysis between major ion time series and the SOI indicated that there were significant sections with high common power between the major ion time series and the SOI, suggesting a correlation between the ion records of the Qomolangma ice core and ENSO. Further investigation indicated that the higher SOI years corresponded with weaker continental air masses and stronger south Asian monsoons over the southern TP, leading to increased marine ions and decreased continental ions transported to the southern TP. The in-phase surface pressure anomalies of the southern TP and Darwin, Australia, link ENSO and ion transport over the southern TP, and thus suggest a link between aerosol transport over the southern TP and ENSO.

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This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution licence (, which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Corresponding author

Correspondence: Shugui Hou <>


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Effects of ENSO on the major ion record of a Qomolangma (Mount Everest) ice core

  • Hao Xu (a1) (a2), Shugui Hou (a1), Hongxi Pang (a1) and Chaomin Wang (a1)


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