Geochemical fractionation of 210 Pb in oxic estuarine sediments of Coatzacoalcos River, Gulf of Mexico

J. F. Ontiveros-Cuadras, J. A. Sanchez-Cabeza, L. H. Pérez-Bernal, A. C. Ruiz-Fernández, L. L. Wee-Kwong

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210 Pb activities were analyzed in surface sediments from the Coatzacoalcos River (Gulf of Mexico) to evaluate its distribution according to sediment grain size and in different geochemical compartments by using sequential extraction techniques. The geochemical fractionation experiments provided compatible results: by using the Tessier's method [1] more than 90% of the 210 Pb activity in the samples was found the residual fraction (primary and secondary minerals) and the remaining (<10%) in the iron and manganese oxides fraction of the sediments; whereas using the Huerta-Diaz and Morse method [2] the 210 Pb content was found in comparative amounts in the reactive, the silicate, and the pyrite fractions (accounting together for >80%), and the rest was found in the residual fraction. The grain size fractionation analyses showed that the 210 Pb activities were mostly retained in the clay fraction, accounting up to 60-70% of the 210 Pb total activity in the sediment sample and therefore, it is concluded that the separation of the clay fraction can be useful to improve the analysis of low 210 Pb content sediments for dating purposes. © 2011 Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest, Hungary.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)947-956
JournalJournal of Radioanalytical and Nuclear Chemistry
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2012


  • 210 Pb
  • Estuarine sediments
  • Grain size
  • Gulf of Mexico
  • Sequential extraction


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