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Sediment reworking rates in deep sediments of the Mediterranean Sea

TitleSediment reworking rates in deep sediments of the Mediterranean Sea
Publication TypeArticolo su Rivista peer-reviewed
Year of Publication2011
AuthorsBarsanti, Mattia, Delbono Ivana, Schirone Antonio, Langone L., Miserocchi S., Salvi S., and Delfanti Roberta
JournalScience of the Total Environment
KeywordsBioturbation coefficients Db, Mediterranean Sea, Sediment Mixing Layer SML, Sediments

Different pelagic areas of the Mediterranean Sea have been investigated in order to quantify physical and biological mixing processes in deep sea sediments. Herein, results of eleven sediment cores sampled at different deep areas (>2000 m) of the Western and Eastern Mediterranean Sea are presented.210Pbxs and 137Cs vertical profiles, together with 14C dating, are used to identify the main processes characterising the different areas and, finally, controlling mixing depths (SML) and bioturbation coefficients (Db). Radionuclide vertical profiles and inventories indicate that bioturbation processes are the dominant processes responsible for sediment reworking in deep sea environments.Results show significant differences in sediment mixing depths and bioturbation coefficients among areas of the Mediterranean Sea characterised by different trophic regimes. In particular, in the Oran Rise area, where the Almeria-Oran Front induces frequent phytoplankton blooms, we calculate the highest values of sediment mixing layers (13cm) and bioturbation coefficients (0.187cm2yr-1), and the highest values of 210Pbxs and 137Cs inventories. Intermediate values of SML and Db ( 6cm and 0.040cm2yr-1, respectively) characterise the mesothrophic Algero-Balearic basin, while in the Southern Tyrrhenian Sea mixing parameters (SML of 3cm and Db of 0.011cm2yr-1) are similar to those calculated for the oligotrophic Eastern Mediterranean (SML of 2cm and Db of 0.005cm2yr-1). © 2011 Elsevier B.V.


cited By 14

Citation KeyBarsanti2011a
PubMed ID21561644