Details zur Publikation

Kategorie Textpublikation
Referenztyp Zeitschriften
DOI 10.1002/lno.12046
Lizenz creative commons licence
Titel (primär) Measurement of microplastic settling velocities and implications for residence times in thermally stratified lakes
Autor Elagami, H.; Ahmadi, P.; Fleckenstein, J.H.; Frei, S.; Obst, M.; Agarwal, S.; Gilfedder, B.S.
Journal / Serie Limnology and Oceanography
Erscheinungsjahr 2022
Department HDG
Band/Volume 67
Heft 4
Seite von 934
Seite bis 945
Sprache englisch
Topic T5 Future Landscapes
Abstract Microplastics residence times in lakes are currently poorly understood. In this work, settling experiments with pristine and biofilm-colonized microplastic particles were combined with model calculations to evaluate settling velocities, particle distributions, and residence times in the epilimnion, metalimnion, and hypolimnion of a hypothetical stratified lake broadly based on Upper Lake Constance. Settling velocities of various biodegradable and nonbiodegradable polymers of various shapes, sizes, and biofilm colonization were measured in a settling column. The settling velocities ranged between ~ 0.30 and ~ 50 mm s−1. Particle sizes and polymer densities were identified as primary controls on settling rates. Microplastic particles that had been exposed to a lake environment for up to 30 weeks were colonized by a range of biofilms and associated extracellular polymeric substances; surprisingly, however, the settling velocity did not vary significantly between pristine and colonized microplastic particles. Simulated microplastic residence times in the model lake varied over a wide range of time scales (10−1 to 105 d) and depended mainly on the size of the particles and depth of the lake layer. Long residence times on the order of 105 d (for 1-μm microplastic particles) imply that for small microplastic particles there is a high probability that they will be taken up at some stage by lake organisms. As the lake retention time (~ 4.5 years) is considerably shorter than the residence time of small microplastics, negligible quantities of these microplastic particles should be found in the lake sediment unless some other process increases their settling velocity.
dauerhafte UFZ-Verlinkung
Elagami, H., Ahmadi, P., Fleckenstein, J.H., Frei, S., Obst, M., Agarwal, S., Gilfedder, B.S. (2022):
Measurement of microplastic settling velocities and implications for residence times in thermally stratified lakes
Limnol. Oceanogr. 67 (4), 934 - 945