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Sources and fluxes of atmospheric trace elements to the Gulf of Aqaba, Red Sea Public Deposited

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  • We present the first comprehensive investigation of the concentrations, fluxes and sources of aerosol trace elements over the Gulf of Aqaba. We found that the mean atmospheric concentrations of crustally derived elements such as Al, Fe and Mn (1081, 683, and 16.7 ng m¯³) are about 2–3 times higher than those reported for the neighboring Mediterranean area. This is indicative of the dominance of the mineral dust component in aerosols over the Gulf. Anthropogenic impact was lower in comparison to the more heavily populated areas of the Mediterranean. During the majority of time (69%) the air masses over the Gulf originated from Europe or Mediterranean Sea areas delivering anthropogenic components such as Cu, Cd, Ni, Zn, and P. Airflows derived from North Africa in contrast contained the highest concentrations of Al, Fe, and Sr but generally lower Cu, Cd, Ni, Zn, and P. Relatively high Pb, Ni, and V were found in the local and Arabian airflows suggesting a greater influence of local emission of fuel burning. We used the data and the measured trace metal seawater concentrations to calculate residence times of dissolved trace elements in the upper 50 m surface water of the Gulf (with respect to atmospheric input) and found that the residence times for most elements are in the range of 5–37 years while Cd and V residence times are longer.
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  • Chen, Y., A. Paytan, Z. Chase, C. Measures, A. J. Beck, S. A. San˜udo-Wilhelmy, and A. F. Post (2008), Sources and fluxes of atmospheric trace elements to the Gulf of Aqaba, Red Sea, J. Geophys. Res., 113, D05306.
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