Rainfall, groundwater, and surface water isotope data from extreme tropical cyclones (2016-2019) within the Caribbean Sea and Atlantic Ocean basins

Published: 11-03-2020| Version 1 | DOI: 10.17632/vwgffx5cv3.1
Contributors:
Ricardo Sanchez-Murillo,
Kristen Welsh

Description

This data set contains novel surface rainfall isotope compositions (δ18O, δ2H, and d-excess in ‰) of tropical cyclones Otto (Costa Rica, 2016), Nate (Costa Rica, 2017), Irma and María (Cuba and The Bahamas, 2017), and Dorian (The Bahamas, 2019). Unique high frequency tempestology sampling of rainfall enabled δ18O and δ2H isotope analysis. In total, 161 surface rainfall samples were collected in passive devices with event-based and daily frequencies, resulting in the first surface TC isotopic anatomy across the Caribbean Sea and Atlantic Ocean basins to date. Our data also provides spring (N=338) and surface water (N=334) isotope compositions after the impact of Hurricane Otto and Tropical Storm Nate in central Costa Rica. Our data may improve the current understanding of key processes governing rainfall isotope ratios in the Caribbean Sea and Atlantic Ocean basins during continental and maritime TC tracks, with applications to the interpretation of paleo-hydroclimate and groundwater recharge processes across the tropics.

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Rainfall samples (N=161) were collected using passive funnel devices in Costa Rica (Lat: 10.0945, Long: -84.0587, elevation: 1,949 m asl), Cuba (Lat: 22.0657, Long: -80.4832, elevation: 35 m asl), and The Bahamas (Lat: 25.0739, Long: -77.4138, elevation: 11 m asl) with discrete time intervals (i.e., event-based and daily) prior to, during, and after hurricane landfalls or passages. Spring (Pacific slope of central Costa Rica) (N=338) and surface water (Caribbean slope of central Costa Rica) (N=334) samples were collected on daily/weekly (regular sampling frequency) and 6-hourly basis (during the influence of hurricane Otto) using an automated peristaltic sampler AS950 (Hach Company, Colorado, USA). Samples were transferred and stored in airtight 30 mL borosilicate containers at 5C until analysis. Samples were immediately transferred and stored in airtight 30 mL HDPE bottles at 5°C until analysis. Hurricane Otto samples were analyzed at the Stable Isotope Laboratory of the Northern Rivers Institute at the University of Aberdeen (Aberdeen, Scotland) using a DLT-100 laser analyzer (Los Gatos Research, Inc., California, USA) with a precision of 0.6‰ for δ2H and 0.1‰ for δ18O (1 sigma). Hurricane Irma, María, and Dorian samples were analyzed at the Stable Isotopes Research Group laboratory at the Universidad Nacional (Heredia, Costa Rica) using a IWA-45EP water analyzer (Los Gatos Research, Inc., California, USA) with a precision of 0.5‰ for δ2H and 0.1‰ for δ18O (1 sigma). Spring and surface water samples were analyzed at the Stable Isotopes Research Group laboratory at the Universidad Nacional (Heredia, Costa Rica) using a IWA-45EP water analyzer (Los Gatos Research, Inc., California, USA) and a L2120-I water analyzer (Picarro Inc., California, USA) with a precision of 0.5‰ for δ2H and 0.1‰ for δ18O (1 sigma) in both instruments. Stable isotope compositions are expressed as δ18O or δ2H = (Rs/Rstd - 1)·1000, where R is the 18O/16O or 2H/1H ratio in a sample (s) or standard (std) and reported in the delta-notation (‰) relative to V-SMOW/SLAP scale. Instruments accuracy was assessed with a combination of in-house and external water standards (SMOW and SLAP). Deuterium excess was calculated as d-excess = δ2H - 8·δ18O. Please do not hesitate to contact Ricardo Sánchez-Murillo (ricardo.sanchez.murillo@una.cr) (Universidad Nacional, Heredia, Costa Rica) and Kristen Welsh (kristen.unwala@ub.bs.edu) (University of The Bahamas) for further information regarding this data collection.