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Article

Evidence for Pathways of Concentrated Submarine Groundwater Discharge in East Antarctica from Helicopter-Borne Electrical Resistivity Measurements

1
Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, University of California, Santa Cruz, CA 95061, USA
2
Department of Geoscience, Aarhus University, Aarhus, 8000 Midtjylland, Denmark
3
Geology and Geophysics, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803, USA
4
Department of Microbiology, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37996, USA
5
Center for Limnology, University of Wisconsin - Madison, Madison, WI 53706, USA
6
Environmental Studies Program, Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH 03755, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Hydrology 2019, 6(2), 54; https://doi.org/10.3390/hydrology6020054
Received: 12 March 2019 / Revised: 12 June 2019 / Accepted: 16 June 2019 / Published: 20 June 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Submarine Groundwater Discharge and Its Effects)
The Southern Ocean receives limited liquid surface water input from the Antarctic continent. It has been speculated, however, that significant liquid water may flow from beneath the Antarctic Ice Sheet, and that this subglacial flow carries that water along with dissolved nutrients to the coast. The delivery of solutes, particularly limiting nutrients like bioavailable iron, to the Southern Ocean may contribute to ecosystem processes including primary productivity. Using a helicopter-borne time domain electromagnetic survey along the coastal margins of the McMurdo Dry Valleys region of Southern Victoria Land, Antarctica, we detected subsurface connections between inland lakes, aquifers, and subglacial waters. These waters, which appear as electrically conductive anomalies, are saline and may contain high concentrations of biologically important ions, including iron and silica. Local hydraulic gradients may drive these waters to the coast, where we postulate they emerge as submarine groundwater discharge. This high latitude groundwater system, imaged regionally in the McMurdo Dry Valleys, may be representative of a broader system of Antarctic submarine groundwater discharge that fertilizes the Southern Ocean. In total, it has the potential to deliver tens of gigagrams of bioavailable Fe and Si to the coastal zone. View Full-Text
Keywords: subglacial; Antarctica time-domain electromagnetics; submarine groundwater discharge; resistivity subglacial; Antarctica time-domain electromagnetics; submarine groundwater discharge; resistivity
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MDPI and ACS Style

Foley, N.; Tulaczyk, S.M.; Grombacher, D.; Doran, P.T.; Mikucki, J.; Myers, K.F.; Foged, N.; Dugan, H.; Auken, E.; Virginia, R. Evidence for Pathways of Concentrated Submarine Groundwater Discharge in East Antarctica from Helicopter-Borne Electrical Resistivity Measurements. Hydrology 2019, 6, 54. https://doi.org/10.3390/hydrology6020054

AMA Style

Foley N, Tulaczyk SM, Grombacher D, Doran PT, Mikucki J, Myers KF, Foged N, Dugan H, Auken E, Virginia R. Evidence for Pathways of Concentrated Submarine Groundwater Discharge in East Antarctica from Helicopter-Borne Electrical Resistivity Measurements. Hydrology. 2019; 6(2):54. https://doi.org/10.3390/hydrology6020054

Chicago/Turabian Style

Foley, Neil, Slawek M. Tulaczyk, Denys Grombacher, Peter T. Doran, Jill Mikucki, Krista F. Myers, Nikolaj Foged, Hilary Dugan, Esben Auken, and Ross Virginia. 2019. "Evidence for Pathways of Concentrated Submarine Groundwater Discharge in East Antarctica from Helicopter-Borne Electrical Resistivity Measurements" Hydrology 6, no. 2: 54. https://doi.org/10.3390/hydrology6020054

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