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Measurement of volatile organic compounds in sediments of the Scheldt estuary and the southern North Sea
Roose, P.; Dewulf, J.; Brinkman, U.A.Th.; Van Langenhove, H. (2005). Measurement of volatile organic compounds in sediments of the Scheldt estuary and the southern North Sea, in: Roose, P. Volatile organic compounds and related microcontaminants in the Scheldt estuary and the southern North Sea: method development and monitoring. pp. 163-182
In: Roose, P. (2005). Volatile organic compounds and related microcontaminants in the Scheldt estuary and the southern North Sea: method development and monitoring. PhD Thesis. Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam: Amsterdam. 254 pp., more

Also published as
  • Roose, P.; Dewulf, J.; Brinkman, U.A.Th.; Van Langenhove, H. (2001). Measurement of volatile organic compounds in sediments of the Scheldt estuary and the southern North Sea. Wat. Res. 35(6): 1478-1488. hdl.handle.net/10.1016/S0043-1354(00)00410-3, more

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Keywords
    Measurement; Sediments; Volatile organic compounds; ANE, North Sea, Southern Bight [Marine Regions]; Belgium, Zeeschelde [Marine Regions]; Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Roose, P., more
  • Dewulf, J., more
  • Brinkman, U.A.Th., more
  • Van Langenhove, H., more

Abstract
    The concentrations and distribution of 13 priority volatile organic compounds (VOCs) were determined in sediments of the Scheldt estuary and the Belgian continental shelf, using a modified Tekmar LSC 2000 purge-and-trap system coupled to GC-MS. The method allows a sample intake of up to 50 g wet weight and detection limits are between 0.003 ng/g (tetrachloromethane) and 0.16 ng/g (m- and p-xylene). The repeatability (n = 5) varied between 4% (benzene) and 17% (toluene) and the recoveries ranged from 59% (1,1-dichloroethane) to 99% (tetrachloromethane). Because of the nature of the contaminants, special attention was paid to analyte losses and contamination of the samples during storage aboard the research vessel. Spiked sediment samples were prepared in the laboratory and stored aboard under the same conditions as the environmental samples. The recoveries for these samples varied between 94 and 130%, which suggests that storage had no adverse effect on the samples. No detectable VOC concentrations were found for most of the sampling stations. However, in the Antwerp harbour area, significant concentrations of VOCs were found. The sorption behaviour as predicted from laboratory equilibrium partitioning experiments gives an indication of the in situ partitioning behaviour of VOCs. Although VOCs in sediments should, in general, not be regarded as a major problem in the marine environment, high local concentrations may be a cause of concern.

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