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The effectivity of various extraction agents to release mercury from anthropogenically contaminated soils

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Year of publication 2012
Type Article in Proceedings
Conference Book of Proceedings - 5th International Symposium on Biosorption and Bioremediation
Keywords mercury, contaminated soil, single extraction, inductively coupled plasma mass spectroscopy, Advanced Mercury Analyzer AMA-254
Description The potential bioavailability of the Hg from the soil might by characterized by variety of chemical processes, differing in the extraction agent, its concentration, the sample weight or the time of extraction. In this study, a comparative analysis of several extraction methods, commonly used for obtaining the mobile phase of the mercury from anthropogenically contaminated soils, was carried out. The aim was to estimate the rate of mercury sorption by soil, especially by its organic matter. Concentrated HNO3, 0.01 M Na2S2O3, 0.05 M EDTA and 0.11 M CH3COOH were used as extraction agents. The inductively coupled plasma mass spectroscopy (ICP-MS) was used to estimate the mobile phase of the mercury within each extract and the Advanced Mercury Analyzer (AMA-254) for the determination of total Hg, respectively. The results showed that even strong acid HNO3 is unable to release the mercury tightly bound to the soil matrix. This particular method with microwave digestion is commonly used for the estimation of this type of anthropogenic pollution. Conversely, the lowest mercury yield was obtained using the acetic acid. In all experiments, the concentrations were below 0.15 % of the total Hg content, which is a proportion generally defined as biologically available to plants.
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