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Open Access Sulfur Profiles of the Twentieth Century in Peat Bogs of the Swiss Midlands Measured by ICP-OES and by IC

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The growth rates of ombrotrophic peat bogs are controlled solely by the atmospheric input of nutrients. Such systems serve as archives for the emission of anthropogenic pollutants close to urban centers. Goal of the present investigation was to unravel the history of the deposition of sulfur during the twentieth century. In two peat bogs of the Swiss Midlands peat cores were collected and dated using the lead isotope 210Pb. After a wet digestion of the sample material in pressure bombs by microwave excitation the resulting solutions were measured for their S concentrations by ICP-OES or by IC.

The S concentrations vary between 1–5 g/kg of dry sample mass. The comparison with the estimated total sulfur emissions for Switzerland from the BUWAL shows an excellent correlation with two maximal values around the years 1960 and 1980, respectively. The fact that the same deposited amount of pollutant is determined in the two peat bogs situated 50 km apart indicates that the measured signals are not controlled by local sources.

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Keywords: ARCHIVES; DATING BY 210PB; MICROWAVE WET DIGESTION; PEAT BOGS; SULFUR

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 2001

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  • International Journal for Chemistry and Official Membership Journal of the Swiss Chemical Society (SCS) and its Divisions

    CHIMIA, a scientific journal for chemistry in the broadest sense, is published 10 times a year and covers the interests of a wide and diverse readership. Contributions from all fields of chemistry and related areas are considered for publication in the form of Review Articles and Notes. A characteristic feature of CHIMIA are the thematic issues, each devoted to an area of great current significance.

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