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Title: Dual carbonate clumped isotope (Δ47-Δ48) measurements constrain different sources of kinetic isotope effects and quasi-equilibrium signatures in cave carbonates
Cave carbonate minerals are an important terrestrial paleoclimate archive. A few studies have explored the potential for applying carbonate clumped isotope thermometry to speleothems as a tool for constraining past temperatures. To date, most papers utilizing this method have focused on mass-47 clumped isotope values (Δ47) at a single location and reported that cave carbonate minerals rarely achieve isotopic equilibrium, with kinetic isotope effects (KIEs) attributed to CO2 degassing. More recently, studies have shown that mass-47 and mass-48 CO2 from acid digested carbonate minerals (Δ47 and Δ48) can be used together to assess equilibrium and probe KIEs. Here, we examined 44 natural and synthetic modern cave carbonate mineral samples from 13 localities with varying environmental conditions (ventilation, water level, pCO2, temperature) for (dis)equilibrium using Δ47-Δ48 values, in concert with traditional stable carbon (δ13C) and oxygen (δ18O) isotope ratios. Data showed that 19 of 44 samples exhibited Δ47-Δ48 values indistinguishable from isotopic equilibrium, and 18 (95 %) of these samples yield Δ47-predicted temperatures within error of measured modern temperatures. Conversely, 25 samples exhibited isotopic disequilibria, 13 of which yield erroneous temperature estimates. Within some speleothemsamples, we find Δ47-Δ48 values consistent with CO2 degassing effects, however, the majority of sampleswith KIEs are consistent with other processes being dominant. We hypothesize that these values reflect isotopicbuffering effects on clumped isotopes that can be considerable and cannot be overlooked. Using a Raleigh Distillation Model, we examined carbon and oxygen isotope exchange trajectories and their relationships with dual clumped isotope disequilibria. Carbon isotope exchange is associated with depletion of both Δ47 and Δ48 relative to equilibrium, while oxygen isotope exchange is associated with enrichment of both Δ47 and Δ48 relative to equilibrium. Cave rafts collected from proximate locations in Mexico exhibit the largest averagedepartures from equilibrium (ΔΔ47 = − 0.032 ± 0.007, ΔΔ48 = − 0.104 ± 0.035, where ΔΔi is the measured value – the equilibrium value). This study shows how the Δ47-Δ48 dual carbonate clumped isotope framework can be applied to a variety of tcave carbonate mineral samples, enabling identification of isotopic equilibria and therefore quantitative application of clumped isotope thermometry for paleoclimate reconstruction, or alternatively, constraining the mechanisms of kinetic effects.  more » « less
Award ID(s):
1804262 1806090 2103129
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ;
Publisher / Repository:
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta
Page Range / eLocation ID:
95 to 112
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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