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Decarbonation and preservation method for the analysis of organic C and N contents and stable isotope ratios of low-carbonated suspended particulate material
Lorrain, A.; Savoye, N.; Chauvaud, L.; Paulet, Y.-M.; Naulet, N. (2003). Decarbonation and preservation method for the analysis of organic C and N contents and stable isotope ratios of low-carbonated suspended particulate material. Anal. Chim. Acta 491(2): 125-133. dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0003-2670(03)00815-8
In: Analytica Chimica Acta. Elsevier: New York; Amsterdam. ISSN 0003-2670, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in  Authors 
    VLIZ: Open Repository 103882 [ OMA ]

Keyword
    Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Lorrain, A.
  • Savoye, N., more
  • Chauvaud, L.
  • Paulet, Y.-M.
  • Naulet, N.

Abstract
    The aim of this study was to determine a simple routine procedure to preserve, decarbonate and analyse low-carbonated filters of suspended particulate organic matter (POM) for particulate organic carbon and nitrogen content, δ13C and δ15N. Our goal was to analyse these four parameters from a single and entire filter of POM without altering the organic material. First, freezing (−20 °C) versus oven-drying (60 °C) were compared as the initial preservation step. Afterwards, non-acidified samples were compared to acid-treated samples using 0.12N HCl (diluted HCl rinsing at the end of the filtration) or 12N HCl (filters exposed to HCl fumes for 4 h in a dessicator). Regarding the preservation methods, our results indicate that freezing increases the uncertainty of δ15N measurements and, in combination with concentrated HCl treatment, leads to a loss of particulate nitrogen and an alteration of the δ15N signature. Consequently, we recommend drying to preserve filter samples. Regarding acid treatments, we found that (i) diluted HCl would not be sufficient to fully remove the carbonate from our samples, (ii) in contrast, a 4 h exposure of the filters to the HCl fumes was enough to remove all the inorganic carbon, and (iii) the concentrated HCl treatment did not alter the nitrogen measurements (only when drying without freezing is used to preserve the filters). Consequently, we propose that low-carbonated POM filters are preserved by drying and carbonates are removed by exposing the filters to HCl fumes (4 h) for the analysis of particulate organic C and N content and isotope ratios.

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