Hydrogeochemistry of Meltwater of the Chaturangi Glacier, Garhwal Himalaya, India

  • Virendra Bahadur Singh
  • AL. Ramanathan
  • Jose George Pottakkal
  • Manoj Kumar
Research Article


A hydrochemical analysis of meltwater draining from Chaturangi glacier was conducted to determine the dissolved ions chemistry and to evaluate the geochemical processes controlling major ions chemistry of the study area. Ca2+, Mg2+ and SO4 2− are the dominant ions in the glacier meltwater. The ratio of (Ca + Mg) versus TZ+ varied from 0.79 to 0.86 with an average value of 0.82 ± 0.02 indicating larger contribution of Ca and Mg to the total cations. (Ca + Mg)/(Na + K) ratio is also high, varying from 3.77 to 6.33 with an average value of 4.77 ± 0.79. This shows the dominancy of carbonate weathering in the study area. The scatter diagram between (Ca + Mg) versus SO4 2− shows a linear trend throughout the range of data, indicating the dissolution of sulphate minerals as one of the possible source of SO4 2− in the Chaturangi glacier meltwater. The C-ratio of meltwater of the study area shows that sulphide oxidation is the major proton producing mechanism. Correlation matrix and principal component analysis (factor analysis) were applied for identification of various processes controlling solute acquisition in the Chaturangi glacier meltwater.


Hydrogeochemistry Rock weathering Statistical analysis Chaturangi glacier Garhwal Himalaya 



This study has been financed by the Department of Science and Technology, Govt. of India. The authors are thankful to Mr. Vikas for his contribution in the preparation of map of the study area.


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Copyright information

© The National Academy of Sciences, India 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Virendra Bahadur Singh
    • 1
  • AL. Ramanathan
    • 1
  • Jose George Pottakkal
    • 1
  • Manoj Kumar
    • 1
  1. 1.Glaciology, Hydrogeochemistry & Biogeochemistry Laboratory, School of Environmental SciencesJawaharlal Nehru UniversityNew DelhiIndia

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