Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Schwertmannite In Wet, Acid, And Oxic Microenvironments Beneath Polar And Polythermal Glaciers

Date:
May 5, 2009
Source:
The Geological Society of America
Summary:
Chemical conditions beneath glaciers are difficult to observe and are usually studied by sampling meltwaters emerging from glacial oulets or drill holes. These waters average chemical signals over a large area and cannot record small-scale spatial and temporal variability.

Chemical conditions beneath glaciers are difficult to observe and are usually studied by sampling meltwaters emerging from glacial oulets or drill holes. These waters average chemical signals over a large area and cannot record small-scale spatial and temporal variability.

By contrast, subglacial sediments contain minute (nanometer-sized) particles of iron oxides that can only have formed in transient geochemical "hotspots." Raiswell et al. have found minute crystals of schwertmannite, an iron hydroxy-sulfate mineral, in glaciers from the Antarctic and Arctic.

Schwertmannite is typically found in acid mine drainage, where it forms by the oxidation of pyrite at low pH. These conditions can also be created in subglacial environments, but only in minute hotspots or "microenvironments."

There, schwertmannite forms rapidly but is very unstable, and its survival requires freezing into ice within 100 years. So, frozen nanoparticle schwertmannite indicates the presence of transient geochemically active microenvironments deep within glacial ice.

The formation, preservation, and delivery of nanoparticles of schwertmannite (and iron oxides) into the Southern Ocean may partially relieve iron-limited photosynthesis and assist in the removal of manmade carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

This study, "Schwertmannite in wet, acid, and oxic microenvironments beneath polar and polythermal glaciers," by R. Raiswell et al. was published in the May 2009 edition of Geology.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by The Geological Society of America. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

The Geological Society of America. "Schwertmannite In Wet, Acid, And Oxic Microenvironments Beneath Polar And Polythermal Glaciers." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 May 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090505061830.htm>.
The Geological Society of America. (2009, May 5). Schwertmannite In Wet, Acid, And Oxic Microenvironments Beneath Polar And Polythermal Glaciers. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090505061830.htm
The Geological Society of America. "Schwertmannite In Wet, Acid, And Oxic Microenvironments Beneath Polar And Polythermal Glaciers." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090505061830.htm (accessed August 22, 2014).

Share This




More Earth & Climate News

Friday, August 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Airlines on Iceland Volcano Alert

Airlines on Iceland Volcano Alert

Reuters - Business Video Online (Aug. 22, 2014) Iceland evacuates an area north of the country's Bardarbunga volcano, as the country's civil protection agency says it cannot rule out an eruption. Authorities have already warned airlines. As Joel Flynn reports, ash from the eruption of the Eyjafjallajokull volcano in 2010 shut down much of Europe's airspace for six days. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Endangered Red Wolves Face Uncertain Future

Endangered Red Wolves Face Uncertain Future

AP (Aug. 22, 2014) A federal judge temporarily banned coyote hunting to save endangered red wolves, but local hunters say that the wolf preservation program does more harm than good. Meanwhile federal officials are reviewing its wolf program in North Carolina. (Aug. 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Coal Gas Boom in China Holds Climate Risks

Coal Gas Boom in China Holds Climate Risks

AP (Aug. 22, 2014) China's energy revolution could do more harm than good for the environment, despite the country's commitment to reducing pollution and curbing its carbon emissions. (Aug. 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Microbrewery Chooses Special Can for Its Beer

Microbrewery Chooses Special Can for Its Beer

AP (Aug. 22, 2014) Aluminum giant, Novelis, has partnered with Red Hare Brewing Company to introduce the first certified high-content recycled beverage can. (Aug. 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins