The effect of temperature on the release of silicon, iron and manganese into seawater from resuspended sediment particles

Sediments are considered to be refractory materials with limited influences on dissolved iron (dFe) pool in the ocean. However, recent field observations and laboratory experiments suggest that iron released from resuspended sediment particles and transported from continental margins is prone to fertilize large areas of the world ocean. Here we conducted a dissolution experiment to quantify the amount of dFe released from two types of resuspended sediments (silicate and calcite-rich) to open ocean surface seawater under two temperatures (5 and 15 °C). We followed pH, dissolved oxygen (dO2), phosphate, silicate, dissolved Fe and Mn concentrations (dFe and dMn), and bacterial abundance over 250 days. Extremely low and undetectable phosphate concentrations (< 50 pmol kg-1) were measured throughout the duration of the experiment, causing limited bacteria growth and stable pH and dissolved O2 concentrations under all conditions. Silicate and dFe concentrations increased through time and high temperature (15 °C) induced more iron dissolution from the two sediments than low temperature (5 °C). Temperature had no effect on the dissolution of Mn. Our results further show that Fe and Mn are not released concurrently from the sediment source and that their distribution can be very different. Scavenging of Fe likely caused a decrease of dFe observed during the experiment, which was probably linked to the formation of Mn oxides. We also observed elevated dissolved Fe isotope ratios after dissolution, around +0.16 to +0.27 ‰. Isotopically heavy Fe was released from sediments to the dissolved pool during the dissolution but no difference in Fe isotope ratios was observed between the two temperature conditions. The Fe isotope fractionation can likely be attributed to ligand complexation and scavenging of Fe. These two mechanisms can be important factors not only in controlling the amount of Fe released from sediments but also in fractionating Fe isotopes at the sediment-seawater boundary.


Sediment, Fe isotopes, Temperature, GEOTRACES

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Liao Wen-Hsuan, Planquette Helene, Moriceau Brivaela, Lambert Christophe, Desprez de Gesincourt Floriane, Laurenceau-Cornec Emmanuel, Sarthou Geraldine, Gorgues Thomas (2023). The effect of temperature on the release of silicon, iron and manganese into seawater from resuspended sediment particles. Geochimica Et Cosmochimica Acta. 351. 1-13.,

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