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A baseline survey of the distribution and origin of platinum group elements in contemporary fluvial sediments of the Kentish Stour, England

A baseline survey of the distribution and origin of platinum group elements in contemporary fluvial sediments of the Kentish Stour, England

de Vos, E., Edwards, S.J., McDonald, I., Wray, D.S. ORCID: 0000-0002-0799-2730 and Carey, P.J. (2002) A baseline survey of the distribution and origin of platinum group elements in contemporary fluvial sediments of the Kentish Stour, England. Applied Geochemistry, 17 (8). pp. 1115-1121. ISSN 0883-2927 (doi:10.1016/S0883-2927(02)00010-0)

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Abstract

The extensive anthropogenic use of the platinum group elements (PGE: Ru, Rh, Pd, Os, Ir and Pt) is the main factor responsible for the widespread dispersion of these elements throughout the environment. Significant quantities of the PGE enter fluvial systems via road runoff, storm drains and wastewater and sewage treatment systems, and may accumulate in fluvial sediments by physical and chemical processes. A baseline survey of contemporary fluvial sediments in the Kentish Stour river, east Kent, England, has been undertaken to document the sources and distribution of anthropogenic PGE in an attempt to constrain some of the physical and chemical parameters that may influence the distribution of these elements. The geology of the catchment of the Kentish Stour is dominated by carbonate and silicate sedimentary rocks, and the river passes through urban and rural land and receives inputs of waste from sewage works. Nine sedimentary rocks, 4 motorway-runoff sediments and 22 river sediments were analysed for PGE by NiS fire assay preconcentration and ICP–MS. The highest element abundances occur in the motorway-runoff sediments (maximum total PGE content of 55 ng/g), whilst the lowest values were recorded in the sedimentary rocks, where some samples contain PGE at concentrations below the limit of detection. The total PGE content of the river sediments ranged from 0.4 to 10.8 ng/g. The distribution and variation in concentrations and ratios of the PGE in the contemporary fluvial sediments of the Kentish Stour correspond strongly with land-use changes (urban versus rural) and with points of discharge from sewage works. The absence of a pure catalytic converter signature in the river sediments, however, indicates that source signatures may be mixed in sewage works or that PGE may chemically fractionate in the fluvial environment.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: platinum group metals, Kentish Stour, sediments
Subjects: Q Science > Q Science (General)
Q Science > QD Chemistry
Pre-2014 Departments: School of Science
Related URLs:
Last Modified: 14 Oct 2016 09:11
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: None
Selected for GREAT 2018: None
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/4222

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