BONGIOVANNI guillermina Azucena
congresos y reuniones científicas
EDXRF multielemental analysis as a valuable tool to study the influence of volcanism on the biota
BONGIOVANNI, GUILLERMINA A.; LAMELA, PAULA A.; SOTOMAYOR, VERÓNICA; PEREZ, CARLOS A; QUERALT, IGNASI
Conferencia; European Conference on X-Ray Spectrometry, EXRS 2014; 2014
Alma Mater Studiorum University of Bologna
From the recent volcanic activity of Cordon Caulle fissure (Puyehue-Cordón Caulle Volcanic Complex - PCCVC) and Copahue volcano, since 2011 to 2013, millions tons of ashes, sand and pumice rained on Argentinian Patagonia [1, 2]. This region produces up to 80% of the national production of some fruits (apples and pears) and around 70% of sheep meat production, also being one of the most important international touristic destinations in Argentina. Therefore, the transfer of some potentially toxic elements from the ashes to the biota may affect economic activities and could have consequences for environmental and human health. In order to study the transference of volcanic elements from ashes to biota, a multielemental analysis was performed in Patagonian vegetation. Leafs and seeds from 11 vegetable species and 3 animal species were collected between the years 2009 to 2013 to compare their elemental composition before and after volcanic eruptions. Elemental characterizations of samples, as well as ashes, were performed by EDXRF (Energy Dispersive X-ray Fluorescence) using bench-top spectrometer and synchrotron (SR-µXRF). Al, Si, K, Ca, Ti, and Fe are the major components in ashes, while toxic elements as V, Mn, Zn, As, Br, Cd and Pb are present at trace level. When elemental pattern of vegetation samples was compared, a significant increase in the concentration of Al, Si, K, Ca, Mn, Zn and Br was observed in several samples after ashes exposure while elements as P were decreased in some of them. In the minority, As concentration also increased. The results suggest that several elements are being transferred from ashes to biota. Since the analyzed species serve as food to animals and/or humans, or are used as medicinal plants, EDXRF provides a good tool detecting the influence of volcanism along food chain, allowing a better assessment of the environmental impacts of this phenomenon.