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Magnetic susceptibility mapping of the Sudbury area, Ontario, Canada: evaluating pollution distributions decades later
  • A. Yurtseven-Sandker
  • Maria Cioppa, University of Windsor
This study evaluates the use of magnetic susceptibility and magnetic parameter measurements in assessing spatial and temporal variations of pollutants that emanated from mining industries in and around Sudbury, Ontario, Canada. For this purpose, in situ magnetic susceptibility (kappa(in situ)) was measured at 106 sites on a grid of 10 km x 10 km and 5 km x 5 km. The kappa(in situ) values ranged from 2 x 10(-5) to 149 x 10(-5) SI, and the highest kappa(in situ) values were observed near the active (Copper Cliff) and inactive (Coniston) mining sites. The lowest kappa(in situ) values were measured at increased distances from possible pollution sources; therefore, mapping of in situ magnetic susceptibility values is a proxy to polluted areas in and around Sudbury. To evaluate potential anthropogenic and (or) lithogenic input to kappa(in situ), low-frequency mass specific magnetic susceptibility (chi(lf)) variations with depth were classified into four different types of profiles. For further investigation of magnetic minerals in the samples, laboratory measurements of magnetic susceptibility, frequency dependence of magnetic susceptibility, hysteresis properties, thermosusceptibility curves, anhysteretic and isothermal magnetizations, and scanning electron microscopy - energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (SEM-EDS) were also conducted on the soil samples. Laboratory measurements indicated that ferrimagnetic minerals (e.g., magnetite) of variable grain size were the dominant magnetic minerals, with the exception of one site that contained an iron sulfide (greigite) phase near a mine waste site. Magnetic spherules observed in SEM micrographs are of variable sizes (6-60 mu m), suggesting that suspended particulate matter (PM10) is present, and may be a health concern. At some sites, EDS analysis showed that heavy metals (Co, Al, and Ni), which threaten human health, are also present in the study area.
Publication Date
May, 2016
Citation Information
A. Yurtseven-Sandker and Maria Cioppa. "Magnetic susceptibility mapping of the Sudbury area, Ontario, Canada: evaluating pollution distributions decades later" CANADIAN JOURNAL OF EARTH SCIENCES Vol. 53 Iss. 5 (2016) p. 466 - 484 ISSN: 0008-4077
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