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Phosphorus adsorption and sedimentation by suspended sediments from Zhushan Bay, Taihu Lake

Wang, Peifang, Hu, Bin, Wang, Chao, Lei, Yang
Environmental science and pollution research international 2015 v.22 no.9 pp. 6559-6569
adsorption, aluminum, ammonium oxalate, dissolved oxygen, fractionation, iron, iron oxides, lakes, oxides, particulates, phosphorus, sediments, suspended sediment, water quality
The process of phosphorus (P) transformation in particulate matter during sediment resuspension and sedimentation was studied. The P-binding forms in resuspended particles (RP) and settled particles (SP) were analyzed by sequential fractionation (modified Psenner method) and an extended extraction with ammonium oxalate. Water quality data and P fractions were used to estimate P release and uptake by the resuspended and settling sediment particles. Results of 8-h resuspension experiments showed increases of dissolved oxygen, pH, total phosphorus, and particulate phosphorus in overlying water, but no change in soluble reactive phosphorus (SRP). P fractions extracted with common sequential fractionation showed that the increase of total P in RP was mainly due to increases of redox-sensitive bound P BD (BD-SRP) and P bound to Al and Fe oxides (NaOH-SRP) (36–52 % and 30–36 % of total increased P, respectively). Comparisons between two sequential fractionations indicated that inorganic P extracted with ammonium oxalate consisted of P bound to amorphous Fe/Al oxy-hydroxides and partially of carbonate-bound P (HCl-SRP) and that increased P in RP was mainly caused by increases in P bound to amorphous oxides. It is concluded that the formation of amorphous oxides and subsequent adsorption of P lead to the increase of P in RP. However, P adsorbed by amorphous oxy-hydroxides in RP is unstable and may be released under sedimentation conditions. Meanwhile, increases in HCl-SRP, refractory P, and crystalline Fe-P were found in SP compared with RP. NaOH-SRP in SP increased gradually under sedimentation conditions. It is suggested that, during sedimentation, mobile P can be transformed to non-mobile P forms that provide long-term P retention. The findings contribute to the understanding of P cycling in particulate matter during sediment resuspension and sedimentation.