Research Article

Mercury Fractionation in the Sediments of Kongsfjorden, an Arctic Fjord, Svalbard  

Mahesh Mohan1 , Chandini P.K.1 , K.P. Krishnan2 , Gopikrishana V.G.1 , Sajinkumar K.S.3 , Kannan V.M.1
1 School of Environmental Sciences, Mahatma Gandhi University, Kottayam-686560, Kerala, India
2 National Centre for Antarctic and Ocean Research, Ministry of Earth Sciences, Headlad Sada, Goa, India
3 Department of Geology, University of Kerala, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India
Author    Correspondence author
International Journal of Marine Science, 2017, Vol. 7, No. 26   doi: 10.5376/ijms.2017.07.0026
Received: 15 May, 2017    Accepted: 06 Jun., 2017    Published: 23 Jun., 2017
© 2017 BioPublisher Publishing Platform
This is an open access article published under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Preferred citation for this article:

Mohan M., Chandini P.K., Krishnan K.P., Gopikrishna V.G., Sajin K.K.S., and Kannan V.M., 2017, Mercury fractionation in the sediments of Kongsfjorden, an Arctic Fjord, Svalbard, International Journal of Marine Science, 7(26): 260-271 (doi: 10.5376/ijms.2017.07.0026)


The presence of mercury (Hg) is increasing in Arctic region and the Arctic sea will take short time to reflect changes in atmospheric Hg levels. Hence, monitoring of mercury content in the environmental matrices of Arctic is highly significant. The present study assessed the total mercury (THg) as well as various Hg fractions in the sediments of Kongsfjorden, an Arctic Fjord in Svalbard. The Hg toxicity mainly depends on the form which occurs. Fractionation study will help to understand the different forms of Hg in sediment samples. The mean concentration of THg in sediment was 485 ng/gm dry weight. The results of fractionation indicated the mobility of Hg in the Kongsfjord sediments. The highest percentage of Hg was in fourth fraction (F4) followed by the fractions F2, F1, and F3 and final fraction (F5). The high Hg concentration in the initial fractions indicated the availability of Hg for chemical and biological transformations and transport in the Fjord. Hence potential toxic effects are possible in the system.

Pollution; Metal; Bioaccumulation; Sediment; Bioavailability
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International Journal of Marine Science
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