Water, Air, & Soil Pollution

, 225:1792

Geochemistry of Tungsten and Arsenic in Aquifer Systems: A Comparative Study of Groundwaters from West Bengal, India, and Nevada, USA

Authors

  • T. Jade Mohajerin
    • Department of Earth and Environmental SciencesTulane University
  • Andrew W. Neal
    • Department of GeologyKansas State University
  • Katherine Telfeyan
    • Department of Earth and Environmental SciencesTulane University
  • Sankar M. Sasihharan
    • Department of GeologyKansas State University
  • Sophie Ford
    • Department of GeologyKansas State University
  • Ningfang Yang
    • Department of Earth and Environmental SciencesTulane University
  • Darren A. Chevis
    • Department of Earth and Environmental SciencesTulane University
  • Deborah A. Grimm
    • Coordinated Instrumentation FacilityTulane University
  • Saugata Datta
    • Department of GeologyKansas State University
  • Christopher D. White
    • Department of Petroleum EngineeringLouisiana State University
    • Department of Earth and Environmental SciencesTulane University
Article

DOI: 10.1007/s11270-013-1792-x

Cite this article as:
Mohajerin, T.J., Neal, A.W., Telfeyan, K. et al. Water Air Soil Pollut (2014) 225: 1792. doi:10.1007/s11270-013-1792-x

Abstract

Tungsten (W) concentrations were measured along with arsenic (As) in groundwaters from the Murshidabad district of West Bengal, India. Tungsten concentrations range from 0.8 to ~8 nmol kg-1 (0.15–1.5 μg kg-1) in the circumneutral pH (average pH ~ 7.3) Murshidabad groundwaters, and attain concentrations as high as 14 nmol kg-1 (2.5 μg kg-1) in local ponds (n = 2). Total dissolved As concentrations (AsT) range from 0.013 to 53.9 μmol kg-1 (<1 to 4,032 μg kg-1), and As(III) predominates in Murshidabad groundwaters accounting for 70 %, on average, of As in solution. Tungsten concentrations in Murshidabad groundwaters are low compared to alkaline groundwaters (pH > 8) from the Carson Desert in Western Nevada, USA, where W concentrations are reported to reach as high as 4,036 nmol kg-1 (742 μg kg-1). Although W is positively correlated with As in groundwaters from the Carson Desert, it is not correlated with AsT or As(III) in Murshidabad groundwaters, but does exhibit a weak relationship with As(V) in these groundwaters. Surface complexation modeling indicates that pH related adsorption/desorption can explain the geochemical behavior of W in Murshidabad groundwaters. However, the model does not predict the high As concentrations observed in Murshidabad groundwaters. The high As and low W concentrations measured in Murshidabad groundwaters indicate that either As and W originate from different sources or are mobilized by different biogeochemical processes within the Murshidabad aquifers. Mobilization of As in Murshidabad groundwaters is presumed to reflect reductive dissolution of Fe(III) oxides/oxyhydroxides and release of sorbed and/or coprecipitated As to the groundwaters. Multivariate statistical analysis of groundwater composition data indicate that W is associated with Mn and Cl-, which may point to a Mn oxide/oxyhydroxide, clay mineral, and/or apatite source for W in the Murshidabad sediments.

Keywords

Tungsten Arsenic Groundwater West Bengal India Nevada

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013