Ammonium occurrence in a salinized lowland coastal aquifer (Ferrara, Italy)
Article first published online: 9 AUG 2012
Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Volume 27, Issue 24, pages 3495–3501, 29 November 2013
How to Cite
Mastrocicco, M., Giambastiani, B.M.S. and Colombani, N. (2013), Ammonium occurrence in a salinized lowland coastal aquifer (Ferrara, Italy). Hydrol. Process., 27: 3495–3501. doi: 10.1002/hyp.9467
- Issue published online: 23 OCT 2013
- Article first published online: 9 AUG 2012
- Accepted manuscript online: 3 JUL 2012 12:33PM EST
- Manuscript Accepted: 19 JUN 2012
- Manuscript Received: 6 FEB 2012
- coastal aquifer;
- groundwater quality;
- seawater intrusion
To understand the spatial distribution and the possible sources of high ammonium concentration in the unconfined coastal aquifer of the Po River Delta lowland (Italy), a detailed characterization of inorganic nitrogen species was completed. A total of 59 boreholes were drilled to collect core samples and groundwater samples of the aquifer. Among them, four piezometers, located along a representative flow line, were chosen to monitor the inorganic nitrogen concentrations with depth. Ammonium is the prevalent nitrogen inorganic species in groundwater, and its concentration increases with depth and salinity. Very high ammonium concentrations are found in coincidence with peaty sediments in the salinized anoxic aquifer and in the low-lying aquitard. In particular, the elevated ammonium concentration derives from mineralization of organic matter present in fine sediments deposited in paleo-marsh environments. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.