An internally consistent dataset of δ13C-DIC in the North Atlantic Ocean – NAC13v1

Becker, Meike; Andersen, Nils; Erlenkeuser, Helmut; Humphreys, Matthew P.; Tanhua, Toste; Körtzinger, Arne

The stable carbon isotope composition of dissolved inorganic carbon ( δ13C-DIC) can be used to quantify fluxes within the carbon system. For example, knowing the δ13C signature of the inorganic carbon pool can help in describing the amount of anthropogenic carbon in the water column. The measurements can also be used for evaluating modeled carbon fluxes, for making basin-wide estimates of anthropogenic carbon, and for studying seasonal and interannual variability or decadal trends in interior ocean biogeochemistry. For all these purposes, it is not only important to have a sufficient amount of data, but these data must also be internally consistent and of high quality.

In this study, we present a δ13C-DIC dataset for the North Atlantic which has undergone secondary quality control. The data originate from oceanographic research cruises between 1981 and 2014. During a primary quality control step based on simple range tests, obviously bad data were flagged. In a second quality control step, biases between measurements from different cruises were quantified through a crossover analysis using nearby data of the respective cruises, and values of biased cruises were adjusted in the data product. The crossover analysis was possible for 24 of the 32 cruises in our dataset, and adjustments were applied to 11 cruises. The internal accuracy of this dataset is 0.017 ‰.

The dataset is available via the Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center (CDIAC) at,



Becker, Meike / Andersen, Nils / Erlenkeuser, Helmut / et al: An internally consistent dataset of δ13C-DIC in the North Atlantic Ocean – NAC13v1. 2016. Copernicus Publications.


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