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Journal Article

H2S events in the Peruvian oxygen minimum zone facilitate enhanced dissolved Fe concentrations


Lavik,  Gaute
Department of Biogeochemistry, Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology, Max Planck Society;

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Schlosser, C., Streu, P., Frank, M., Lavik, G., Croot, P. L., Dengler, M., et al. (2018). H2S events in the Peruvian oxygen minimum zone facilitate enhanced dissolved Fe concentrations. SCIENTIFIC REPORTS, 8: 12642. doi:10.1038/s41598-018-30580-w.

Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0003-B8A1-7
Dissolved iron (DFe) concentrations in oxygen minimum zones (OMZs) of Eastern Boundary Upwelling Systems are enhanced as a result of high supply rates from anoxic sediments. However, pronounced variations in DFe concentrations in anoxic coastal waters of the Peruvian OMZ indicate that there are factors in addition to dissolved oxygen concentrations (O-2) that control Fe cycling. Our study demonstrates that sediment-derived reduced Fe (Fe(II)) forms the main DFe fraction in the anoxic/euxinic water column off Peru, which is responsible for DFe accumulations of up to 200 nmol L-1. Lowest DFe values were observed in anoxic shelf waters in the presence of nitrate and nitrite. This reflects oxidation of sediment-sourced Fe(II) associated with nitrate/nitrite reduction and subsequent removal as particulate Fe(III) oxyhydroxides. Unexpectedly, the highest DFe levels were observed in waters with elevated concentrations of hydrogen sulfide (up to 4 mu mol L-1) and correspondingly depleted nitrate/nitrite concentrations (< 0.18 mu mol L-1). Under these conditions, Fe removal was reduced through stabilization of Fe(II) as aqueous iron sulfide (FeSaqu) which comprises complexes (e.g., FeSH+) and clusters (e.g., Fe2S2|4H(2)O). Sulfidic events on the Peruvian shelf consequently enhance Fe availability, and may increase in frequency in future due to projected expansion and intensification of OMZs.