High-resolution nitrogen gas profiles in sediment porewaters using a new membrane probe for membrane-inlet mass spectrometry

Hilairy Hartnett, Sybil P. Seitzinger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

17 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A probe inlet for membrane-inlet mass spectrometry (MIMS) was developed to measure dissolved nitrogen and argon gas in sediment porewaters. This technique represents a significant improvement in the measurement of dissolved gas ratios in sediment cores and in small volume samples (<5 ml). The probe is stable, inexpensive and has relatively fast equilibration times (∼ 4-5 min) for dissolved N2/Ar ratio analyses. The membrane probe is mounted at the end of a stainless steel capillary (0.75 mm OD) connected directly to the inlet system of a quadrupole mass spectrometer. The membrane is ∼ 1 mm x 0.5 mm resulting in profiles that have a depth resolution of < 2 mm. Nitrogen/argon ratios measured with the probe inlet have a precision of < 0.2%. Porewater N2/Ar ratios measured in cores collected from Raritan Bay, NJ, indicated that N2 was in equilibrium with the atmosphere in overlying waters and that nitrogen was up to 8% supersaturated by a depth of 1 cm. The increase in N2 is consistent with nitrogen production from denitrification of ∼ 2 mmol N2 m-2 day-1. High-resolution nitrate profiles also provide evidence for denitrification, with nitrate being depleted at the same depth horizon where N2 gas concentrations are increasing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)23-30
Number of pages8
JournalMarine Chemistry
Volume83
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Oct 2003
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Mass spectrometry
porewater
Sediments
Nitrogen
mass spectrometry
Gases
probe
membrane
Membranes
Argon
Denitrification
nitrogen
argon
gas
Nitrates
sediment
denitrification
nitrate
dissolved gas
Stainless Steel

Keywords

  • Denitrification
  • High-resolution nitrogen gas profile
  • Membrane-inlet mass spectrometry
  • Sediment porewater

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Oceanography

Cite this

High-resolution nitrogen gas profiles in sediment porewaters using a new membrane probe for membrane-inlet mass spectrometry. / Hartnett, Hilairy; Seitzinger, Sybil P.

In: Marine Chemistry, Vol. 83, No. 1-2, 10.2003, p. 23-30.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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