Advances in Earth Science ›› 2021, Vol. 36 ›› Issue (12): 1258-1271. doi: 10.11867/j.issn.1001-8166.2021.112

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Alkenones-specific Radiocarbon Analysis:A Review of Approaches and Implications

Rui XIAO 1 , 2 , 3( ), Rui BAO 1 , 2 , 3( ), Lei XING 1 , 2   

  1. 1.Frontiers Science Center for Deep Ocean Multispheres and Earth System,Key Laboratory of Marine Chemistry Theory and Technology,Ministry of Education,Ocean University of China,Qingdao 266100,China
    2.Marine Ecology and Environmental Science Laboratory,Pilot National Laboratory for Marine Science and Technology (Qingdao),Qingdao 266071,China
    3.Southern Marine Science and Engineering Guangdong Laboratory (Guangzhou),Guangzhou 511458,China
  • Received:2021-07-27 Revised:2021-10-22 Online:2021-12-10 Published:2022-01-20
  • Contact: Rui BAO;
  • About author:XIAO Rui (1994-), female, Qingdao City, Shandong Province, Ph. D student. Research areas include marine organic geochemistry. E-mail:
  • Supported by:
    the National Natural Science Foundation of China "Investigating transformation, distribution and burial of sedimentary organic carbon in marginal seas: insight from compound specific radiocarbon analysis"(42076037);The Key Special Project for Introduced Talents Team of Southern Marine Science and Engineering Guangdong Laboratory (Guangzhou) "The environmental evolution of the coastline and tidal flat wetlands in the Guangdong-Hongkong-Macao Greater Bay area on a millennium to ten-year scale"(GML2019ZD0209)

Rui XIAO, Rui BAO, Lei XING. Alkenones-specific Radiocarbon Analysis:A Review of Approaches and Implications[J]. Advances in Earth Science, 2021, 36(12): 1258-1271.

Biomarkers are important organic geochemical fingerprints in studying paleoceanography and oceanic elemental cycles. Isotope compositions of biomarkers have significant meanings in investigating the paleoenvironmental reconstruction and carbon cycles in marine realm. Radiocarbon age of Long-Chain Alkenones (LCAs) has greatly scientific significance in constraining age models for establishing marine environmental changes, and studying oceanic carbon cycles at a molecular level, setting an important dimension for the future researches in compound-specific radiocarbon analysis. It thus is necessary to summarize systematically the approaches and implications of Alkenones-Specific Radiocarbon Analysis (ASRA). The separation and purification technologies of LCAs, radiocarbon calculation methods, and blank correction are summarized here. The significant implications of ASRA are proposed as follows: ASRA ①indicates indirectly transportation and deposition processes on sedimentary organic matter, ② can be used to trace marine carbon pool, and ③ to improve chronology and paleoenvironmental indicators in the ocean. The foreground of the development and application of ASRA are also demonstrated. We suggest that systematically summarizing the technical characteristics and typical applications of ASRA is of significance in carbon cycles and paleoenvironment reconstruction in marine system, especially for marine biogeochemical studies in China marginal seas.

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