2,240 research outputs found

    Development and Applications of Synchrotron Radiation Microtomography

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    Development and Applications of Synchrotron Radiation Microtomography

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    Worldwide distribution of continental rock lithology: Implications for the atmospheric/soil CO2 uptake by continental weathering and alkalinity river transport to the oceans

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    The silicate rock weathering followed by the formation of carbonate rocks in the ocean, transfers CO2 from the atmosphere to the lithosphere. This CO2 uptake plays a major role in the regulation of atmospheric CO2 concentrations at the geologic timescale and is mainly controlled by the chemical properties of rocks. This leads us to develop the first world lithological map with a grid resolution of 1 1. This paper analyzes the spatial distribution of the six main rock types by latitude, continents, and ocean drainage basins and for 49 large river basins. Coupling our digital map with the GEM-CO2 model, we have also calculated the amount of atmospheric/soil CO2 consumed by rock weathering and alkalinity river transport to the ocean. Among all silicate rocks, shales and basalts appear to have a significant influence on the amount of CO2 uptake by chemical weatherin

    Enhanced chemical weathering of rocks during the last glacial maximum: a sink for atmospheric CO2?

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    It has been proposed that increased rates of chemical weathering and the related drawdown of atmospheric CO2 on the continents may have at least partly contributed to the low CO2 concentrations during the last glacial maximum LGM.. Variations in continental erosion could thus be one of the driving forces for the glacialrinterglacial climate cycles during Quaternary times. To test such an hypothesis, a global carbon erosion model has been applied to a LGM scenario in order to determine the amount of CO2 consumed by chemical rock weathering during that time. In this model, both the part of atmospheric CO2 coming from silicate weathering and the part coming from carbonate weathering are distinguished. The climatic conditions during LGM were reconstructed on the basis of the output files from a computer simulation with a general circulation model. Only the predicted changes in precipitation and temperature have been used, whereas the changes in continental runoff were determined with an empirical method. It is found that during the LGM, the overall atmospheric CO2 consumption may have been greater than today by about 20%., mainly because of greater carbonate outcrop area related to the lower sea level on the shelves. This does not, however, affect the atmospheric CO2 consumption by silicate weathering, which alone has the potential to alter atmospheric CO2 on the long-term. Silicate weathering and the concomitant atmospheric CO2 consumption decreased together with a global decrease of continental runoff compared to present-day both by about 10%.. Nevertheless, some uncertainty remains because the individual lithologies of the continental shelves as well as their behavior with respect to chemical weathering are probably not well enough known. The values we present refer to the ice-free continental area only, but we tested also whether chemical weathering under the huge ice sheets could have been important for the global budget. Although glacial runoff was considerably increased during LGM, weathering under the ice sheets seems to be of minor importance

    Background levels of heavy metals in surficial sediments of the Gulf of Lions (NW Mediterranean): An approach based on 133Cs normalization and lead isotope measurements

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    This paper presents an attempt to reach natural background levels of heavy metals in surficial sediments of the Gulf of Lions(NW Mediterranean). To correct for the grain-size effect, normalization procedures based on a clay mineral indicator element are commonly used, after a first grain size separation by sieving. In our study, we tested the applicability of this method with respect to commonly used normalizer elements, and found that stable Cs shows the best ability to reflect the fine sediment fraction. Background levels were successfully reached for Co, Cr, Cu, Ni and Pb, compared to various literature references. Nevertheless, in the case of lead, the normalized data depicted a general enrichment in all samples, and the natural levels could only be reached when concentrations were corrected for the atmospheric contribution by analysing lead isotope ratios. Also for Zn, a general enrichment was found in our samples, although less important

    Atmospheric CO2 consumption by continental erosion : present-day controls and implications for the last glacial maximum

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    The export of carbon from land to sea by rivers represents a major link in the global carbon cycle. For all principal carbon forms, the main factors that control the present-day fluxes at the global scale have been determined in order to establish global budgets and to predict regional fluxes. Dissolved organic carbon fluxes are mainly related to drainage intensity, basin slope, and the amount of carbon stored in soils. Particulate organic carbon fluxes are calculated as a function of sediment yields and of drainage intensity. The consumption of atmospheric/soil CO2 by chemical rock weathering depends mainly on the rock type and on the drainage intensity. Our empirical models yield a total of 0.721 Gt of carbon (Gt C) that is exported from the continents to the oceans each year. From this figure, 0.096 Gt C come from carbonate mineral dissolution and the remaining 0.625 Gt C stem from the atmosphere (FCO2). Of this atmospheric carbon, 33% is discharged as dissolved organic carbon, 30% as particulate organic carbon, and 37% as bicarbonate ions. Predicted inorganic carbon fluxes were further compared with observed fluxes for a set of 35 major world rivers, and possible additional climatic effects on the consumption of atmospheric CO2 by rock weathering were investigated in these river basins. Finally, we discuss the implications of our results for the river carbon fluxes and the role of continental erosion in the global carbon cycle during the last glacial maximum
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