Aquatic environment

Distribution of heavy metals in the water column, suspended particulate matters and the sediment under hydrodynamic conditions using an annular flume

Jianzhi Huang , Xiaopeng Ge , Dongsheng Wang


Received February 13, 2012,Revised August 22, 2012, Accepted , Available online December 07, 2012

Volume 24,2012,Pages 2051-2059

Sediment resuspension plays an important role in the transport and fate of heavy metals in the aquatic environment. In the present study, the release and binding forms of Cr, Cu, Zn, Pb under hydrodynamic conditions were investigated using an annular flume. Two sediments located at YLZ and GBD from Liangshui River, Beijing were resuspended for 10 hr at 0.159 and 0.267 m/sec, respectively. The concentrations of suspended particulate matters of YLZ were higher than those of GBD during resuspension, indicating that the former sediment is more sensitive to the velocity. Cr in the dissolved phase stayed nearly constant at about 2.25 and 1.84 μg/L for YLZ and GBD, respectively, due to the high percentage of its stable binding fractions in both sediments, while Cu, Zn, and Pb showed a fast release in the initial period of time. However, their concentrations in SPM generally decreased with time and were higher at the lower velocity of 0.159 m/sec, which resulted from the entrainment and depressing effect of larger size particles with lower heavy metal content, commonly referred to as the "particle concentration effect". In addition, the binding form and heavy metal fractions were also found to vary during the resuspension event. A decrease in the sulphide/organic matters bounded form in GBD sediment was observed, whereas no visible changes were perceived in YLZ site samples. This phenomenon is due to the oxidation of heavy metal-sulphide binding forms, which originated from its high acid volatile sulphide content in GBD sediment.

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