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The marine barite saturation state of the world's oceans
Monnin, C.; Jeandel, C.; Cattaldo, T.; Dehairs, F.A. (1999). The marine barite saturation state of the world's oceans. Mar. Chem. 65(3-4): 253-261
In: Marine Chemistry. Elsevier: Amsterdam. ISSN 0304-4203, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in Authors 
    VLIZ: Open Repository 10260 [ OMA ]

    Aqueous solutions; Oceanography; Oceans; Saturation; Thermodynamics; Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Monnin, C.
  • Jeandel, C.
  • Cattaldo, T., more
  • Dehairs, F.A., more

    This paper addresses the question of the eventual control of barium concentration in seawater by an equilibrium with barite. For this, we have used a new thermodynamic model to compute the barite saturation index of ocean waters, mainly from GEOSECS data. Our results show that equilibrium between barite and seawater is reached in a number of places: cold surface waters of the Southern Ocean, waters at intermediate depths (2000-3500 m) in the Pacific, deep waters (2000-3500 m) of the Gulf of Bengal. The only samples for which a slight barite supersaturation is found are the surface waters at GEOSECS station G89 in the Weddell Gyre. Besides these locations, the rest of the world's oceans is undersaturated, as was established by Church and Wolgemuth [Church, T.M., Wolgemuth, K., 1972. Marine barite saturation, Earth Planet. Sci. Lett. 15 35-44.]. There is a return to undersaturation of the water column at depths of about 3500 m in the Pacific and of about 2500 m in the Southern Ocean. The reverse is found for GEOSECS station 446 in the Gulf of Bengal for which the highest Ba concentrations can be found at depth: surface waters are undersaturated and equilibrium is reached below 2000 m. Finally, we briefly discuss the role of biogenic and inorganic processes on barite formation in the ocean as well as the influence of strontium substitution in marine barites.

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