Partition of Fe, Mn, Al, K, Mg, Cu and Zn between Particulate Organic Matter and Minerals, and its Dependence on Total Concentrations of Suspended Matter

  1. S.-D. Nio,
  2. R. T. E. Shüttenhelm and
  3. Tj. C. E. Van Weering
  1. Jan C. Duinker

Published Online: 29 JUN 2009

DOI: 10.1002/9781444303759.ch31

Holocene Marine Sedimentation in the North Sea Basin

Holocene Marine Sedimentation in the North Sea Basin

How to Cite

Duinker, J. C. (2009) Partition of Fe, Mn, Al, K, Mg, Cu and Zn between Particulate Organic Matter and Minerals, and its Dependence on Total Concentrations of Suspended Matter, in Holocene Marine Sedimentation in the North Sea Basin (eds S.-D. Nio, R. T. E. Shüttenhelm and Tj. C. E. Van Weering), Blackwell Publishing Ltd., Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781444303759.ch31

Author Information

  1. Netherlands Institute for Sea Research, Texel, the Netherlands

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 29 JUN 2009
  2. Published Print: 23 DEC 1981

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780632008582

Online ISBN: 9781444303759

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Keywords:

  • participate suspended matter samples - Fe, Mn, Al, K, Mg, Cu, Zn and organic C;
  • existence of seston fraction of small, low-density particles;
  • particulate suspended matter;
  • elemental partition;
  • strong correlation between contents of elements and organic C in seston

Summary

Particulate suspended matter samples of the Southern North Sea were analysed for Fe, Mn, Al, K, Mg, Cu, Zn and organic C. It was found that the properties of seston obtained at low seston concentrations are different from properties obtained at high seston concentrations. Evidence is given for the existence of a seston fraction, consisting of small, low-density particles. This fraction resists settling, thus being in suspension continuously. The fraction has higher contents of Mg, Cu, Zn and organic C, and lower contents of Fe, Al and K and higher elemental/Al ratios (for all elements studied here) than a fraction consisting of larger, more dense particles, mainly derived from bottom sediments by resuspension. The varying contribution of the latter fraction results in practically constant elemental contents and elemental/Al ratios at seston concentrations above 10 mg 1−1, elemental/Al ratios being practically identical to those reported for fine-grained sediments. Metals are partitioned over organic matter and mineral components. The higher X/Al ratios at low seston concentrations suggest that specific concentrations in the continuously suspended fraction are determined primarily by organic matter and mineral components such as hydrous oxides of Fe and Mn rather than Al-silicates. It remains unsolved whether some metals (Cu, Zn) are associated with organic matter or with minerals, that co-vary with organic matter. It is suggested that detrital organic matter rather than living phytoplankton should be considered as a potentially significant site for trace metals in the Southern Bight.