Environmental Geochemistry and Health

, Volume 40, Issue 5, pp 1919–1929 | Cite as

Simultaneous measurements of arsenic and sulfide using diffusive gradients in thin films technique (DGT)

  • Lv Xu
  • Qin Sun
  • Shiming DingEmail author
  • Mengdan Gong
  • Chaosheng Zhang
Original Paper


Diffusive gradients in thin films technique (DGT) is a dynamically passive sampling technique which has been applied increasingly to the environmental monitoring field. In the preliminary period, the DGT with zirconium hydroxide-silver iodide as the binding phase (ZrO-AgI DGT) has been developed for the determination of sulfide (S(II)). On this basis, this paper developed its determination method for inorganic arsenite (As(III)) to further realize the simultaneous and high-resolution measurements of labile inorganic As and S(II) in sediments. ZrO-AgI binding gel had a strong ability in adsorbing and fixing As(III), showing a linear increase in the initial 12.5 min. After saturation of S(II) on ZrO-AgI binding gel, the adsorption rate and adsorption capacity of As(III) reduced by 8 and 14%, respectively. A stable elution rate (89.1 ± 2.2%) was obtained by extraction of As(III) on the binding gel using a mixture solution of 1.0 M NaOH and 1.0 M H2O2 (1:1). The DGT capacity of As(III) determined by the ZrO-AgI DGT was 23.6 μg cm−2. DGT uptakes of As(III) were independent of pH (4.0–9.0) and ionic strength (0.01–100 mM), and they did not interfere with each other during the uptake process. Simultaneous measurements of labile As and S(II) in four sediment cores of Taihu Lake (China) with ZrO-AgI DGT showed that they had similarly vertical distributions in the top 16-mm layer in one core and in the whole profile up to the 35 mm depth in two cores. It likely reflected a simultaneous release of As and S(II) in sediments by synchronous reduction of As-hosted oxidized iron and sulfate, respectively. The simultaneous decreases of labile As and S(II) from their co-precipitation (e.g., As2S3) were not obvious in deeper sediment layer through the measurement with ZrO-AgI DGT.


Arsenic Sulfide Diffusive gradients in thin films technique (DGT) Sediment Simultaneous measurement 



This study was jointly sponsored by the National Scientific Foundation of China (41571465, 51479068, 41621002, 41322011), a fund from the Priority Academic Program Development of Jiangsu Higher Education Institutions (PAPD).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lv Xu
    • 1
  • Qin Sun
    • 1
  • Shiming Ding
    • 2
    Email author
  • Mengdan Gong
    • 2
  • Chaosheng Zhang
    • 3
  1. 1.Key Laboratory of Integrated Regulation and Resource Development on Shallow Lakes, Ministry of Education, College of EnvironmentHohai UniversityNanjingChina
  2. 2.State Key Laboratory of Lake Science and Environment, Nanjing Institute of Geography and LimnologyChinese Academy of SciencesNanjingChina
  3. 3.International Network for Environment and HealthNational University of IrelandGalwayIreland

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