Environmental Geology

, Volume 1, Issue 3, pp 171–180 | Cite as

Electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy: A suggested approach to trace metal analysis in marine environments

  • Bruce A. Burgess
  • N. Dennis Chasteen
  • Henri E. Gaudette


Electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy analysis of marine samples from different environments appears to differentiate between adsorbed and structural Mn (II) and Fe (III) sites in the sediment. This suggests that EPR may provide a means of distinguishing different environmental influences on sediment. Acid extract solutions from sediment samples exhibit clearly defined EPR spectra due to Mn(II), Ti(III), Fe(III), and VO(IV), which are amenable to qualitative and quantitative analysis at concentrations below one part per million. Spectra of several shellfish vary considerably, both between species, and within a species, depending on sampling localities. Resonances from Mn(II), Mo(V), and Fe(III) can be obtained. Mn(II) is substituted for Ca(II) in the calcite structure of some shells.

The low detection limits, small sample size, required and identification of oxidation states by EPR complement other analytical techniques and may prove useful in marine systems.


Electron Paramagnetic Resonance Electron Paramagnetic Resonance Signal Sorbed Metal Broad Electron Paramagnetic Resonance Balanus Balanoides 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Angel, B. R., and P. L. Hall, 1972, Electron spin resonance studies of kaolins: Proc. Internat. Clay Conf., Madrid, June 1972, p. 47–60.Google Scholar
  2. Angino, E. E., R. Hathaway, and J. Worman, 1971, Identification of manganese in water solutions by electron spin resonance,in Nonequilibrium systems in natural water chemistry: Advances in Chemistry, Ser. No. 106, 299–308.Google Scholar
  3. Angino, E. E., Y. P. Virmani, and E. J. Zeller, 1972, Use of electron spin resonance in fingerprinting crude oils: Geol. Soc. America, Prog. with Abstracts, v. 4, no. 7, p. 435.Google Scholar
  4. Bertine, K. K., and E. D. Goldberg, 1972. Trace elements in clams, mussels, and shrimp: Limnology and Oceanography, v. 17, p. 877–884.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Brooks, R. R., and M. G. Rumsby, 1965, The biogeochemistry of trace element uptake by some New Zealand bivalves: Limnology and Oceanography, v. 10, p. 521–527.Google Scholar
  6. Burgess, B. A., 1974, Applications of electron paramagnetic resonance to the marine environment: Univ. New Hampshire, unpub. M.S. thesis, 113 p.Google Scholar
  7. Clementz, D. M., M. M. Mortland, and T. J. Pinnavaia, 1974, Properties of reduced charge montmorillonites: hydrated Cu(II) ions as a spectroscopic probe: Clays and Clay Minerals, v. 22, p. 49–57.Google Scholar
  8. Clementz, D. M., T. J. Pinnavaia, and M. M. Mortland, 1973, Stereochemistry of hydrated copper(II) ions on the interlamellar surfaces of layer silicates: an electron spin resonance study: Jour. Physical Chemistry, v. 77, p. 196–200.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Friedlander, H. Z., C. R. Frink, and J. Saldick, 1963, Electron spin resonance in various clay minerals: Nature, v. 199, p. 61–62.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Goodman, B. A., J. B. Raynor, 1970, Electron spin resonance of transition metal complexes,in Advances in inorganic chemistry and radiochemistry: New York, Academic Press, Inc., v. 13, p. 135–362.Google Scholar
  11. Griscom, D. L., and C. L. Marquardt, 1972, Evidence of lunar surface oxidation processes: electron spin resonance of lunar materials and simulated lunar materials: Proc. Third Lunar Sci. Conf., v. 3, p. 2397–2415.Google Scholar
  12. Guilbault, G. G., and T. Misel, 1969. Determination of mixtures of copper(II) and manganese(II) by electron spin resonance: Analytical Chemistry, v. 41, p. 1100–1103.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. —— 1970, Some selective determinations of iron group elements in the presence of each other by electron spin resonance methods: Analytica Chimica Acta, v. 50, p. 151–156.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Guilbault, G. G., and E. S. Moyer, 1970, The separation and determination of molybdenum by electron paramagnetic resonance: Analytical Letters, v. 3, p. 563–571.Google Scholar
  15. Hall, P. L., B. R. Angel, and J. Braven, 1974, Electron spin resonance and related studies of lignite and ball clay from South Devon, England: Chemical Geology, v. 13, p. 97–113.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Heise, J. J., 1968, Application of electron spin resonance spectroscopy to oceanographic samples: Marine Sciences Instrumentation, v. 4, p. 25–35.Google Scholar
  17. Janzen, E. B., 1972, Electron spin resonance: Analytical Chemistry, v. 44, p. 113R-121R.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Levanon, H., G. Stein, and Z. Luz, 1968, The electron spin resonance spectrum of (FeF63− in aqueous solution: Am. Chemical Soc., Jour. v. 90, p. 5292–5293.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. McBride, M., T. J. Pinnavaia, and M. M. Mortland, 1975, Electron spin relaxation and the mobility of manganese(II) exchange ions in smectites: Am. Mineralogist, v. 60, p. 66–72.Google Scholar
  20. Orton, J. W., 1968, Electron paramagnetic resonance: an introduction to transition group ions: London, Iliffe Books, Ltd., 248 p.Google Scholar
  21. Rupert, J. P., 1973, Electron spin resonance of interlamellar copper(II)—arene complexes on montmorillonite: Jour. Physical Chemistry, v. 77, p. 784–790.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Saraceno, A. J., D. T. Funale, and N. D. Coggeshall, 1961, An electron paramagnetic resonance investigation of vanadium in petroleum oils: Analytical Chemistry, v. 33, p. 500–505.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Tsay, Fun-Dow, S. L. Manatt, D. H. Live, and S. I. Chan, 1973, Metallic Fe phases in Apollo 16 fines: their origin and characteristics as revealed by electron spin resonance studies: Proc. Fourth Lunar Sci. Conf., v. 3, p. 1751–2761.Google Scholar
  24. Viramani, Y. P., and E. J. Zeller, 1974, Analysis of background copper concentrations in sea water by electron spin resonance: Analytical Chemistry, v. 46, p. 324–325.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Wakeman, S., and R. Carpenter, 1973, Electron spin resonance spectra of manganese nodules: Am. Geophys. Union, Abstracts of 54th Mtg. Paper OG74, p. 339.Google Scholar
  26. Wauchope, R. D., and David R. Hague, 1971, ESR in clay minerals: Nature (Physical Science) v. 233, p. 141–142.Google Scholar
  27. Weeks, K. A., 1973, Ferromagnetic phases of lunar fines and breccias: electron magnetic resonance of spectra of Apollo 16 samples: Proc. Fourth Lunar Sci. Conf., v. 3, p. 2763–2781.Google Scholar
  28. Wertz, J. E., and J. R. Bolton, 1972, Electron spin resonance: Elementary theory and practical applications: New York, McGraw-Hill Book Co., 497 p.Google Scholar
  29. Wickman, H. H., M. P. Klein, and D. A. Shirley, 1964, Paramagnetic resonance of Fe3+ in polycrystalline ferrichrome A: Jour. Chemical Physics, v. 42, p. 2113–2117.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Wildeman, T. R., 1970, The distribution of Mn2+ in some carbonates by electron paramagnetic resonance: Chemical Geology, v. 5, p. 167–177.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York Inc. 1975

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bruce A. Burgess
    • 1
  • N. Dennis Chasteen
    • 1
  • Henri E. Gaudette
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of ChemistryUniversity of New HampshireDurhamUSA
  2. 2.Department of Earth SciencesUniversity of New HampshireDurhamUSA

Personalised recommendations