Environmental Geochemistry and Health

, Volume 20, Issue 2, pp 77–86 | Cite as

Seasonal Variations and Chemical Forms of Heavy Metals in Soils and Dusts from the Satellite Cities of Seoul, Korea

  • Hyo-Taek Chon
  • Joo-Sung Ahn
  • Myung Chae Jung


This research investigated heavy metal pollution of soils and dusts in two representative satellite cities of Seoul, Korea and studied the seasonal variations in metal concentrations through the rainy season and the chemical forms of metals using a sequential extraction analysis. The metal dispersion pattern was illustrated to match with urban structure. Soil and dust samples were collected from the cities of Uijeongbu and Koyang, which are the northern and northwestern satellite cities of Seoul (the capital), before and after rainy season. Concentrations of Cu, Pb and Zn were higher than those of the world averages for soils, and their levels decreased after rain, particularly in highly contaminated samples. Relatively high pH values were found in roadside soils, but no seasonal variation was found after the rainy season. The three metals (Cu, Pb and Zn) in soils and dusts were associated with various chemical fractions of soils and dusts as distinguished by the sequential extraction scheme, and a strong similarity of metal association between soils and dusts was found, which indicates that airborne dust may be a principle source of soil contamination. Copper is uniformly distributed, and Pb is largely associated with the reducible phase. There is an appreciable proportion of total Zn in the exchangeable/water-acid soluble fraction. After the rainy season, the most soluble fractions in soils and dusts were leached away. In terms of mobility and bioavailability of metals in soils and dusts, the order Zn >> Cu > Pb is suggested. Geographical variations of total metals corresponded well with urbanised areas of cities, especially the industrial complex and major motorways.

Satellite cities of Seoul Korea Heavy metal pollution seasonal variations chemical forms 


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Copyright information

© Chapman & Hall 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hyo-Taek Chon
    • 1
  • Joo-Sung Ahn
    • 1
  • Myung Chae Jung
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Mineral and Petroleum Engineering, College of EngineeringSeoul National UniversitySeoulKorea
  2. 2.Department of Earth Resources and Environmental Geotechnics EngineeringSemyung UniversityJecheonKorea

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