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Chemistry for Sustainable Development

2012 year, number 6

Role of Volcanic Factor in Enhancing Springtime Ozone Anomalies over Antarctica

Institute of Monitoring of Climatic and Ecological Systems, Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences,
Pr. Akademicheskiy 10/3, Tomsk 634055 (Russia)
Keywords: Antarctic ozone hole, volcanoes, Mount Erebus, Volcanic Explosivity Index VEI, sulphuric acid aerosol, chloronitrate, hydrogen chloride, polar vortex, polar stratospheric cloud, condensation nuclei
Pages: 687–692


A predominant role of volcanic factor in strengthening the springtime ozone anomalies over Antarctica has been demonstrated. Correlation analysis was performed concerning the average data for September and October with respect to the areas of polar stratospheric clouds and the ozone hole over Antarctica as well as with respect to minimum temperature values in the stratosphere at an altitude of 18 km, during three 11-year period from 1979 to 2011. It is demonstrated that the accelerated growth of the ozone hole in the early 1980s coincided with the maximum gas emissions of the Antarctic volcano Mount Erebus. Within the subsequent 11-year period, increasing the area of the ozone hole was caused by an abrupt increase in the content of sulphuric acid aerosol in the stratosphere over Antarctica associated with powerful volcanic eruptions of Mount Pinatubo and Hudson Cerro in 1991.