Aldehydes are common in a variety of geologic environments and are derived from a number of sources, both natural and anthropogenic. Experimental data for aqueous aldehydes were taken from the literature and used, along with parameters for the revised Helgeson-Kirkham-Flowers (HKF) equations of state, to estimate standard partial molal thermodynamic data for aqueous straight-chain alkyl aldehydes at high temperatures and pressures. Examples of calculations involving aldehydes in geological environments are given, and the stability of aldehydes relative to carboxylic acids is evaluated. These calculations indicate that aldehydes may be intermediates in the formation of carboxylic acids from hydrocarbons in sedimentary basin brines and hydrothermal systems like they are in the atmosphere. The data and parameters summarized here allow evaluation of the role of aldehydes in the formation of prebiotic precursors, such as amino acids and hydroxy acids on the early Earth and in carbonaceous chondrite parent bodies.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Geochemistry and Petrology