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I. De Pater, University of California, Berkeley Berkeley, California, USA,
D. P. Hamilton, University of Maryland College Park, Maryland, USA,
M. R. Showalter, SETI Institute Mountain View, California, USA,
H. B. Throop, Planetary Science Institute Tucson, Arizona, USA,
J. A. Burns, Cornell University Ithaca, New York, USA
We obtained radiocarbon (14C) dates with accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) of vascular plant samples and a charcoal sample collected from peat deposits near the prehistoric village site informally designated CR-03 on Carlisle Island in the Islands of Four Mountains group, Alaska, to determine the eruption age of the CR-02 tephra. A fine vitric ash erupted from Okmok caldera, Umnak Island (ca. 2 ka BP) was also discovered in the bog. The ages of the CR-02 tephra and Okmok II ash are estimated to be 1050 and 2000 cal BP, respectively. Because both tephras are distinctive and widespread, these are important chronostratigraphic markers for archaeological sites in this island group. The 14C dates obtained from this bog are 800 years younger than the dates of the charcoal fragments from cultural layers in the Unit 3 of prehistoric village site CR-02 (AMK-0003).
An updated compilation of published and new data of major-ion (Ca, Cl, K, Mg, Na, NO3, SO4) and methylsulfonate (MS) concentrations in snow from 520 Antarctic sites is provided by the national ITASE (International Trans-Antarctic Scientific Expedition) programmes of Australia, Brazil, China, Germany, Italy, Japan, Korea, New Zealand, Norway, the United Kingdom, the United States and the national Antarctic programme of Finland. The comparison shows that snow chemistry concentrations vary by up to four orders of magnitude across Antarctica and exhibit distinct geographical patterns. The Antarctic-wide comparison of glaciochemical records provides a unique opportunity to improve our understanding of the fundamental factors that ultimately control the chemistry of snow or ice samples. This paper aims to initiate data compilation and administration in order to provide a framework for facilitation of Antarctic-wide snow chemistry discussions across all ITASE nations and other contributing groups. The data are made available through the ITASE web page (http://www2.umaine.edu/itase/content/syngroups/snowchem.html) and will be updated with new data as they are provided. In addition, recommendations for future research efforts are summarized.
Bone is frequently dated in archaeological studies and, especially for very old bones (more than 40,000 years old), it is critical to have an accurate and precise measure of the material-specific background value and its associated uncertainty. The SUERC Radiocarbon Laboratory has obtained a mammoth bone as a background bone standard and an appropriate number are now routinely prepared and measured in each AMS batch, resulting in the accumulation of a large number of background bone results over a two-year period. Additionally, information on which of the two accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) instruments was used to make the radiocarbon (14C) measurements, and which sample pretreatment method (modified Longin or modified ultrafiltration) was used to extract and purify the collagen, is recorded for each sample. These data have been used to estimate the laboratory bone background (to be subtracted from each unknown bone sample prepared in the laboratory) and its associated analytical uncertainty. The statistical analysis of the bone results has made use of a linear mixed effects model to examine the variation, and to apportion the overall variation between and within batches on both AMS instruments, and the different pretreatment methods used at SUERC.
We present a new surface-balance and ice-motion dataset derived from high-precision GPS measurements from a network of steel poles within three icefields of the Allan Hills blue-ice area, Antarctica. The surveys were conducted over a 14 year time period. Ice-flow velocities and mass- balance estimates for the main icefield (MIF) are consistent with those from pre-GPS era measurements but have much smaller uncertainties. The current study also extends these measurements through the near-western icefield (NWIF) to the eastern edge of the mid-western icefield (MWIF). The new dataset includes, for the first time, well-constrained evidence of upward motion within the Allan Hills MIF, indicating that old ice should be present at the surface. These data and terrestrial meteorite ages suggest that paleoclimate reconstructions using the surface record within the Allan Hills MIF could potentially extend the ice-core-based record beyond the 800 000 years currently available in the EPICA Dome C core.
The SUERC Radiocarbon Laboratory employs a one-step “background subtraction” method when calculating 14C ages. An interglacial wood (VIRI Sample K) is employed as the non-bone organic background standard, while a mammoth bone (LQH12) from Latton Quarry is used as the bone background standard. Results over several years demonstrate that the bone background is consistently around a factor of two higher and more variable than the wood background. As a result, the uncertainty on routine bone measurements is higher than for other sample types. This study investigates the factors that may contribute to the difference in F14C values and the higher variability. Preparations of collagen using modified Longin or ultrafiltration methods show no significant difference, nor does eliminating the collagen dissolution step. Two bone samples of known infinite age with respect to radiocarbon are compared and again no significant difference is observed. Finally, the quantity and age of the organic matter in the water used during the pretreatment is investigated and it is shown that there is insufficient organic matter in the reverse osmosis water to influence background values significantly. The attention is now on determining if incomplete demineralization could lead to contaminants being retained by the phosphate in the hydroxyapatite.
The Southern Hemisphere VLBI Experiment (or SHEVE) was a joint US-Australian-South African venture with both astronomy and geodesy goals. The principle astronomy goal was to make models or maps of the following sources: at 2.3 GHz (with six antennas and 9 usable baselines) – Centaurus A (the nearest active galaxy), Circinus X-1 (a flaring binary), the VELA pulsar, and 26 other active galactic nuclei and quasars; at 8.4 GHz (only one baseline) – Centaurus A and the galactic center.
Six radio telescopes were operated as the first southern hemisphere VLBI array in April and May 1982. Observations were made at 2.3 and 8.4 Ghz. This array produced VLBI images of 28 southern hemisphere radio sources, high accuracy VLBI geodesy between southern hemisphere sites, and subarcsecond radio astrometry of celestial sources south of declination −45 degrees. This paper discusses only the astrophysical aspects of the experiment.
VLBI observations of the nucleus of Centaurus A were made in April, 1982 at two frequencies with an array of five Australian radio antennas as part of the Southern Hemisphere VLBI Experiment (SHEVE). Observations were undertaken at 2.29 GHz with all five antennas, while only two were operational at 8.42 GHz. The 2.29 GHz data yielded significant information on the structure of the nuclear jet. At 8.42 GHz a compact unresolved core was detected as well.
The Southern Hemisphere VLBI Experiment (SHEVE) program is aimed at producing high-resolution images of southern radio sources. The radio telescopes of the present SHEVE array are described below and some recent results presented.
We describe an X-ray polarimeter which will be flown on the SPECTRUM-X-Gamma mission. The instrument exploits three distinct physical processes to measure polarization: Bragg reflection from a graphite crystal, Thomson scattering from a metallic lithium target, and photoemission from a Cesium Iodide photocathode. These three processes allow polarization measurements over an energy band of 0.3 keV to 12 keV. The polarimeter will make possible sensitive measurements of several hundred known X-ray sources. X-ray polarization measurements will allow us to constrain the geometry of gas flow in X-ray binaries, identify nonthermal emission in supernova remnants, test current models for X-ray emission in radio pulsars, determine the radiation mechanisms in active galactic nuclei, and search for inertial frame dragging (Lense-Thirring effect) around the putative black hole in Cygnus X-1.
Relative sea-level change (RSL), from the Late Glacial through to the late Holocene, is reconstructed for the Assynt region, northwest Scotland, based on bio- and lithostratigraphical analysis. Four new radiocarbon-dated sea-level index points help constrain RSL change for the Late Glacial to the late Holocene. These new data, in addition to published material, capture the RSL fall during the Late Glacial and the rise and fall associated with the mid-Holocene highstand. Two of these index points constrain the Late Glacial RSL history in Assynt for the first time, reconstructing RSL falling from 2.47 ± 0.59 m OD to 0.15 ± 0.59 m OD at c. 14,000–15,000 cal yr BP. These new data test model predictions of glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA), particularly during the early deglacial period which is currently poorly constrained throughout the British Isles. Whilst the empirical data from the mid- to late-Holocene to present matches quite well with the recent GIA model output, there is a relatively poor fit between the timing of the Late Glacial RSL fall and early Holocene RSL rise. This mismatch, also evident elsewhere in northwest Scotland, may result from uncertainties associated with both the global and local ice components of GIA models.
Background: Ependymomas are rare tumors of the central nervous system whose management is controversial. This population-based study of adults and children with ependymoma aims to (1) identify clinical and treatment-related factors that impact survival and (2) determine if postoperative radiotherapy (RT) can improve survival of patients with subtotal resection (STR) to levels similar to patients who had gross total resection (GTR). Methods: This retrospective population-based study evaluated 158 patients with ependymoma diagnosed between 1975-2007 in Alberta, Canada. Results: Younger patients (<7 years of age) were more likely to be diagnosed with grade III tumors compared with adults in whom grade I tumors were more common (p=0.003). Adults were more likely to have spinally located tumors compared to young children whose tumors were typically found in the brain. Overall, young children with ependymoma were more likely to die than older children or adults (p=0.001). An equivalent number of patients underwent GTR as compared with STR (48% vs 45%, respectively). Overall, older age, spinal tumor location, lower grade, and GTR were associated with improved progression free survival but only GTR was associated with significant improvement in overall survival. Median survival after STR and RT was 82 months compared with 122 months in patients who had GTR (p=0.0022). Conclusions: This is the first Canadian population-based analysis of patients with ependymoma including adults and children. Extent of resection appears to be the most important factor determining overall survival. Importantly, the addition of RT to patients initially treated with STR does not improve survival to levels similar to patients receiving GTR.
The acheulian site at Boxgrove contains one of the most extensive areas of in situ fauna and flintwork yet discovered in Britain. This material is found in a complex sequence of sediments which represent depositional conditions from a 42 m sea level rise to the onset of a full periglacial climate. Excavation of the archaeological horizon has been accompanied by a programme of multidisciplinary research examining site formation processes, palaeolandscape and palaeoecological development, using sedimentological and environmental reconstruction techniques. Dating of the site is tentative as no absolute dates are available at present. However, comparative analysis with other British sites would suggest a position for the Boxgrove sequence within the Middle Pleistocene. The archaeological horizon is interpreted as being deposited towards the latter part of an interglacial or an interstadial period.
Experiments in the system NaAlSiO4(Ne)−KAlSiO4(Ks)−SiO2(Qz)−H2O at 100 MPa show that the maximum content of NaAlSi2O6 in leucite is ∼4 wt.% and that analcime is close to the stoichiometric composition (NaAlSi2O6.H2O). Analcime forms metastably on quenching the higher-temperature experiments; it is secondary after leucite in experiments quenched from 780°C, while from 850°C it forms by alteration of leucite, and by devitrification of water-saturated glass. Both processes involve reaction with Na-rich aqueous fluids. Stable analcime forms at 500°C, well below the solidus, and cannot form as phenocrysts in shallow volcanic systems. New data for natural analcime macrocrysts in blairmorites are presented for the Crowsnest volcanics, Alberta, Canada. Other researchers have suggested that primary analcime occurs as yellow-brown, glassy, analcime phenocrysts. Our microprobe analyses show that such primary analcime is close to stoichiometric, with very low K2O (<0.1 wt.%), minor Fe2O3 (0.5−0.8 wt.%) and CaO (∼0.5 wt.%). An extrapolation of published experimental data for Ne−Ks−Qz at >500 MPa PH2O, where Anl + melt coexist, suggests that at >800 MPa two invariant points are present: (1) a reaction point involving Kf + Ab + Anl + melt + vapour; and (2) a eutectic with Kf + Anl + Ne + melt + vapour. We suggest that the nepheline-free equilibrium mineral assemblage for Crowsnest samples is controlled by reaction point (1). In contrast, blairmorites from Lupata Gorge, Mozambique, form at eutectic (2), consistent with the presence of nepheline phenocrysts. Our conclusions, based on high- vs. low-pressure experiments, confirm the suggestion made by other authors, that Crowsnest volcanic rocks must have been erupted explosively to preserve glassy analcime phenocrysts during very rapid, upward transport from deep in the crust (H2O pressures ≫500 MPa). Only rare examples survived the deuteric and hydrothermal alteration that occurred during and after eruption.
The Ballantrae complex has yielded its oldest yet determined age of 576 ± 32 Ma from an Sm–Nd internal isochron for a block ‘eclogite’ interpreted as being a component of the mélange-olistostrome unit at Knockormal. This unit is possibly older than the main ophiolitic part of the complex and the ‘eclogite’ block provides evidence for the existence of oceanic crust older than c. 575 Ma on the southern margin of the Laurentian shield.
An Sm–Nd internal isochron from a high-grade metapyroxenite in the metamorphic aureole beneath an obducted slab of mantle peridotite at Laigh Knocklaugh yields an age of 505 ± 11 Ma. This is interpreted as close to the age of metamorphism and is older than the K–Ar age of 478 ± 8 Ma determined for the amphibolites of the aureole which underlie the metapyroxenite. The metapyroxenite had a provenance deeper in the oceanic crust than the amphibolite and the former has been structurally detached and justaposed against the latter in this telescoped metamorphic sequence.
We demonstrate the novel use of CV simulation to determine the level of charge at each interface in multilayer GaAs/AlGaAs heterostructures. The gettering of charged centres at the earliest grown interfaces is quantitatively appraised and the parallel application of PL decay lifetime measurements determines their effectiveness as recombination centres. A direct relationship is found between the magnitude of the charged states and the recombination velocity. Estimates of a 1eV activation energy and a hole capture cross section of 10−15 cm2 were also obtained. This suggests that the dominant recombination centre could be observed as a hole trap.