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Distribution of the Platinum Group Elements in Peat Deposit Near a Historic Lead and Silver Mining District


Concentrations of platinum group elements (PGE) and Ag were studied in a minerotrophic peat deposit near a historic Pb–Ag mining district (Příbram, Czech Republic). The PGE determinations were performed by quadrupole ICP-MS after NiS fire assay procedure. In the individual peat layers (dated by measurement of 210Pb activity) the PGE concentrations were low and ranged from 0.015 ng g−1 (Ir) to 11.8 ng g−1 (Pt). The enrichment of PGE (especially Pt) compared to the Earth crust contents were observed during two periods. The peak in the second half of 19th century was explained by massive increase of ore mining and affinity of PGE to concentrate in molten lead during Pb processing. The recent PGE enrichment in peat layers might be explained by automobile (with catalytic converters) exhaust fumes or processing of computer electronic parts by the smelter.

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We wish to thank M. Fayadová for her help with the pre-concentration procedures. Financial support from Charles University (GAUK 274/2006) and from ASCR (KJB 300130612) and from the Ministry of Education (MSM 0021620855) is gratefully acknowledged. The ICP-MS facility at Charles University was funded by a PHARE Project.

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Correspondence to Ladislav Strnad.

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Strnad, L., Mihaljevič, M., Ettler, V. et al. Distribution of the Platinum Group Elements in Peat Deposit Near a Historic Lead and Silver Mining District. Bull Environ Contam Toxicol 81, 159–163 (2008).

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  • PGE (platinum group elements)
  • Peat
  • Mining/smelting
  • Příbram