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Carbonaceous particles reduce marine microgel formation
Shiu, R.-F.; Chin, W.-C.; Lee, C.-L. (2014). Carbonaceous particles reduce marine microgel formation. NPG Scientific Reports 4(5856): 6 pp.
In: Scientific Reports (Nature Publishing Group). Nature Publishing Group: London. ISSN 2045-2322, more
Peer reviewed article  

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  • Shiu, R.-F.
  • Chin, W.-C.
  • Lee, C.-L.

    An increase in ambient carbonaceous particle (CNP) levels has been found, potentially leading to significant environmental/health hazards. These particles will ultimately enter the oceanic environment and interact with dissolved organic carbon. However, a detailed mechanistic understanding of their behavior, transport, and fate in marine systems is still much needed. This study, using carbon black (CB, 14 nm) nanoparticles as a model, aimed to investigate the impact of CNPs on marine microgel formation, a critical shunt between DOC and particulate organic carbon that potentially represents a ~70-Gt organic carbon flux. We found that CB can enhance the stability of DOC polymers and reduce microgel equilibrium sizes in concentration as low as 1 µgL-1 CB, possibly due to negative surface charges on CB that decrease cross-linking bridges through Ca2+ bonds. The reduction of marine microgel formation induced by CB could lead to a decrease in the downward transportation of microbial substrates and nutrients, and therefore, could have a significant impact on the carbon cycle and the marine ecosystem.

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