Davison, W. and Grime, G. W. and Woof, C. (1992) Characterization of lacustrine iron sulfide particles with proton-induced X-ray emission. Limnology and Oceanography, 37 (8). pp. 1770-1777.
Black particles, collected by filtration (1.2~pm pore size) from the anoxic waters of a soft-water lake, were examined by a scanning proton microprobe which permitted quantitative elemental analysis by proton-induced X-ray emission (PIXE) and Rutherford backscattering(RBS). There was a uniform distribution of sulfur across the filter, but Fe, and to a lesser extent, Mn, was localized in -5-pm diameter clusters. Elemental analysis with 1 -pm-diameter beams revealed that the Fe clusters were mainly comprised of iron oxides. Iron sulfide material not in the Fe clusters had stoichiometric proportions of Fel.oSo.60Po.60Cao.~~~.A1l4th. ough a purely biogenie origin for P, Ca, and K cannot be ruled out, the composition is consistent with the particles originating as authigenic iron oxides which react with sulfide as they sink through the water column. The iron sulfide particles are richer in Cu (4,000 ppm) and Zn (6,000 ppm) than the iron oxides, suggesting that these elements are also concentrated as their insoluble sulfides. The coexistence of iron oxides and sulfides indicates that either the supply of sulfide is limiting or that some iron oxide particles are unreactive.
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