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(2020) Elevated Concentrations of Gaseous Elemental Mercury in Air and Surface Soil in the Historical Silver Mining Region, Guanajuato, Mexico
Loria A, Ramos Arroyo YR, Rocha D, Cruz-Jiménez G, Alfaro de la Torre C, Guerrero S & Wang F
The author has not provided any additional details.
13h: Room 4, View in program
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Hi Loria Very interesting presentation, I find the sharp increases and decreases in GEM upon excavation particularly interesting! Did you collect any samples from the profiles and performed Hg speciation analysis on those (e.g. thermal desorption)? Would you expect that the sampling disturbance releases most/all of the formed GEM or would you expect more Hg(0) in the soil/sediment/tailing samples? If you disturbe these materials a second time do you see another increase in GEM? Cheers, Lorenz
Dear Lorenz, thank you for your interest and for the question. We did collect solid samples and mercury speciation analysis is, in fact, the next step in this project. We discussed the possibility of doing thermal desorption analysis, but due to time constraints and limited access to the lab, I will instead prioritize a Hg(I) analysis as a speciation analysis (using a recently published method by Wang et al. 2020, https://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.estlett.0c00329) to probe specifically whether there is calomel within (the primary objective of my thesis). The sampling disturbance likely only releases the GEM held within or in proximity to the material that is being removed. To illustrate more clearly, at a given site, the GEM releases are reproducible if another hole is dug, for example, 1 meter a part from the initial hole. This implies that there is very likely a large amount of GEM remaining within these tailings/sediments/soils. Best, Ainsleigh
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