Oxygen and hydrogen isotopes in the hydrologic cycle

J. R. Gat

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1823 Scopus citations


Changes of the isotopic composition of water within the water cycle provide a recognizable signature, relating such water to the different phases of the cycle. The isotope fractionations that accompany the evaporation from the ocean and other surface waters and the reverse process of rain formation account for the most notable changes. The changes of the isotope composition in atmospheric waters, surface water, soil, and groundwaters, as well as in the biosphere, are applied in the characterization of hydrological system as well as indicators of paleo-climatological conditions in proxy materials in climatic archives, such as ice, lake sediments, or organic materials.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)225-262
Number of pages38
JournalAnnual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences
StatePublished - 1 Jan 1996
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science


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