Isotopic fractionation of dissolved ammonium at the oxygen-hydrogen sulfide interface in anoxic waters

D. J. Velinsky, M. L. Fogel, J. F. Todd, Bradley Tebo

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Abstract

The δ15N of dissolved ammonium was determined in three anoxic marine basins: Black Sea, Saanich Inlet, B.C., Canada, and Framvaren Fjord, Norway. In each basin, the δ15N-NH4 + was greatest near the O2/H2S interface, with δ15N as high as +21‰. The depth distributions of NH4 + and δ15N-NH4 + for Black Sea and Framvaren Fjord were examined with a one-dimensional, steady-state, vertical advection-diffusion model to calculate the isotope fraction during the consumption of NH4 + by bacteria. Isotope enrichments, ε, for Black Sea were between 5 and 15‰, whereas in Framvaren Fjord ε ranged from 20 to 30‰. These differences are related mainly to the ambient concentration of NH4 +. Biosynthetic uptake of NH4 + rather than nitrification was responsible for the fractionation. The δ15N-NH4 + in Saanich Inlet appears related to in situ regeneration of NH4 + with little isotopic fractionation between dissolved and particulate nitrogen (PN). -Authors

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)649-652
Number of pages4
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Volume18
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1991
Externally publishedYes

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Black Sea
hydrogen sulfide
isotopic fractionation
fjord
fractionation
ammonium
oxygen
isotopes
isotope
water
Norway
advection
regeneration
Canada
basin
bacteria
particulates
nitrification
vertical distribution
nitrogen

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)

Cite this

Isotopic fractionation of dissolved ammonium at the oxygen-hydrogen sulfide interface in anoxic waters. / Velinsky, D. J.; Fogel, M. L.; Todd, J. F.; Tebo, Bradley.

In: Geophysical Research Letters, Vol. 18, No. 4, 1991, p. 649-652.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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AU - Tebo, Bradley

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N2 - The δ15N of dissolved ammonium was determined in three anoxic marine basins: Black Sea, Saanich Inlet, B.C., Canada, and Framvaren Fjord, Norway. In each basin, the δ15N-NH4 + was greatest near the O2/H2S interface, with δ15N as high as +21‰. The depth distributions of NH4 + and δ15N-NH4 + for Black Sea and Framvaren Fjord were examined with a one-dimensional, steady-state, vertical advection-diffusion model to calculate the isotope fraction during the consumption of NH4 + by bacteria. Isotope enrichments, ε, for Black Sea were between 5 and 15‰, whereas in Framvaren Fjord ε ranged from 20 to 30‰. These differences are related mainly to the ambient concentration of NH4 +. Biosynthetic uptake of NH4 + rather than nitrification was responsible for the fractionation. The δ15N-NH4 + in Saanich Inlet appears related to in situ regeneration of NH4 + with little isotopic fractionation between dissolved and particulate nitrogen (PN). -Authors

AB - The δ15N of dissolved ammonium was determined in three anoxic marine basins: Black Sea, Saanich Inlet, B.C., Canada, and Framvaren Fjord, Norway. In each basin, the δ15N-NH4 + was greatest near the O2/H2S interface, with δ15N as high as +21‰. The depth distributions of NH4 + and δ15N-NH4 + for Black Sea and Framvaren Fjord were examined with a one-dimensional, steady-state, vertical advection-diffusion model to calculate the isotope fraction during the consumption of NH4 + by bacteria. Isotope enrichments, ε, for Black Sea were between 5 and 15‰, whereas in Framvaren Fjord ε ranged from 20 to 30‰. These differences are related mainly to the ambient concentration of NH4 +. Biosynthetic uptake of NH4 + rather than nitrification was responsible for the fractionation. The δ15N-NH4 + in Saanich Inlet appears related to in situ regeneration of NH4 + with little isotopic fractionation between dissolved and particulate nitrogen (PN). -Authors

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