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Water 2013, 5(2), 617-628; doi:10.3390/w5020617
Article

Air Masses Origin and Isotopic Tracers: A Study Case of the Oceanic and Mediterranean Rainfall Southwest of France

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Received: 18 March 2013 / Revised: 8 May 2013 / Accepted: 8 May 2013 / Published: 17 May 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmental Tracers)
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Abstract

Aquifers recharge mainly by local rainfall, which depend on the air mass humidity and orographic lifting, causing rain. The stable isotopes of the water molecule, i.e., oxygen-18 and deuterium, are useful tracers to determine the water source origin. Moreover, the calculation of the deuterium excess enables one to differentiate between the air masses from the Atlantic Ocean or the Mediterranean Sea. A transect from one coast to the other one and going through the city of Toulouse have been made to sample the groundwater and determine their isotopic characteristic. A monthly rainfall sampling has also been done over one year, close to the city Toulouse, to see how the d-excess values range over the season. The discussion replaces these results in available isotopic data.
Keywords: rainfall; stable isotopes; Mediterranean climate rainfall; stable isotopes; Mediterranean climate
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Lambs, L.; Moussa, I.; Brunet, F. Air Masses Origin and Isotopic Tracers: A Study Case of the Oceanic and Mediterranean Rainfall Southwest of France. Water 2013, 5, 617-628.

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