To collect comprehensive information on the characteristics and sources of water-soluble ions in the atmospheric aerosol in Qingdao, samples of total suspended particles (TSP) were collected from January to December 2008, and the concentrations of the major water-soluble inorganic ions were analyzed using ion chromatography. The results showed that SO4(2-), NO3-, NH4+ and Cl- were the dominant water-soluble ions in TSP, the sum of the four accounting for 86.9% of water-soluble ions in mass concentration. TSP and water-soluble inorganic ions showed obvious seasonal variations and there were a variety of sources. The mass concentrations of Na+, NH4+, Ca2+, F- and Mg2+ were highest in winter and lowest in summer. The concentrations of K+ and PO4(3-) were highest in autumn and lowest in summer. NO3-, Cl- and SO4(2-) concentrations had the highest values in spring, winter, and spring, respectively. Different weather conditions had great influence on the concentrations of TSP and water-soluble ions. The mass concentrations of TSP were highest in dust weather followed by haze, smog, fog and sunny days. The average mass concentrations of Na+ , Mg2+, Ca2+, F- , Cl- and PO4(3-) were highest in smog days while the other ions in haze days.