The Aqueous Geochemistry of the Udden Pit Lake


The Udden pit lake in northern Sweden was studied from June 1998 to February 1999 in order to increase knowledge of the geochemistry in lakes created as a result of decommissioning open pit mines. The vertical water profile in the lake was sampled on 4 different occasions, in June, August, September and February. Water samples were analysed for total concentrations of Fe, As, Cu, Cd, Zn, Pb, Al, Ca, K, Mg, Na, Mn, S, Cl, N and P. Temperature, concentration of dissolved O2, conductivity, pH, and redox potential were measured in situ at different depths. Four layers could be observed in the lake during summer, and 3 layers during winter. A thermocline was observed during summer at a depth of 5 m and on all 4 occasions a halocline was observed at a depth of ~ 20 m, and a redoxcline at ~ 35 m. Oxygen concentration decreased dramatically at a depth of 20 m. pH increased downwards in the lake from 4.8 at the surface to 6.4 at the bottom of the lake. Geochemical processes occurring in the lake, the origins of the layers, the metal concentrations and the anion concentrations are discussed in this article.



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