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Studies of cadmium, copper and zinc interactions by marine fulvic and humic materials in seawater using anodic stripping voltammetry.

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Humic and fulvic acids isolated from seawater were found to interact with Cd, Cu and Zn in different ways at natural levels of these elements and natural pH in seawater. Fulvic acids exhibit strong interaction with Zn while Cd and Cu have little or no interaction on the time scale of the diurnal cycles of plankton or bacteria. The Zn-fulvic acid interactions in surface waters probably occur as part of a steady-state cycle of less than 40 hrs duration controlled by photooxidation and bacterial processes. The interaction of Cd, Cu and Zn with humic acids is much more complex. It appears that the natural association of metals and dissolved humic and fulvic acids is so dynamic that once a seawater sample is taken into a closed container for analysis, natural productive and destructive equilibria slow and finally cease. Thus, our perception of how metal-organic interactions occur in the ocean depends upon how quickly samples can be analyzed because true oceanic conditions cannot be duplicated. The use of synthetic complexers to study trace metal chemistry in seawater is discouraged.


Abstract only. Full-text chapter is available only through licensed access provided by the publisher. Published in C.S. Wong, et al. (Eds.), Trace Metals in Seawater (pp.699-717). New York: Plenum Publishing Co.




Plenum Publishing Co.

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