Oxygen consumption rates in subseafloor basaltic crust derived from a reaction transport model

Type Article
Date 2013-09
Language English
Author(s) Orcutt Beth N.1, 2, Wheat C. Geoffrey3, Rouxel OlivierORCID4, Hulme Samuel5, Edwards Katrina J.6, Bach Wolfgang7
Affiliation(s) 1 : Aarhus Univ, Ctr Geomicrobiol, DK-8000 Aarhus, Denmark.
2 : Bigelow Lab Ocean Sci, East Boothbay, ME 04544 USA.
3 : Univ Alaska, Global Undersea Res Unit, Moss Landing, CA 95039 USA.
4 : IFREMER, Ctr Brest, F-29280 Plouzane, France.
5 : Moss Landing Marine Labs, Moss Landing, CA 95039 USA.
6 : Univ So Calif, Dept Biol Sci, Los Angeles, CA 90089 USA.
7 : Univ Bremen, Dept Geosci 5, D-28359 Bremen, Germany.
Source Nature Communications (2041-1723) (Nature Publishing Group), 2013-09 , Vol. 4 , N. 2539 , P. 8p.
DOI 10.1038/ncomms3539
WOS© Times Cited 73
Abstract Oceanic crust is the largest potential habitat for life on Earth and may contain a significant fraction of Earth's total microbial biomass; yet, empirical analysis of reaction rates in basaltic crust is lacking. Here we report the first assessment of oxygen consumption in young (similar to 8 Ma) and cool (<25 degrees C) basaltic crust, which we calculate from modelling dissolved oxygen and strontium pore water gradients in basal sediments collected during Integrated Ocean Drilling Program Expedition 336 to 'North Pond' on the western flank of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. Dissolved oxygen is completely consumed within the upper to middle section of the sediment column, with an increase in concentration towards the sediment-basement interface, indicating an upward supply from oxic fluids circulating within the crust. A parametric reaction transport model of oxygen behaviour in upper basement suggests oxygen consumption rates of 1 nmol cm(-3) ROCK d(-1) or less in young and cool basaltic crust.
Full Text
File Pages Size Access
Publisher's official version 8 583 KB Open access
Top of the page