Gas bubble are present in sediments covering approximately 30% of the main stem of Chesapeake Bay, with bubbles occurring at the sediment-water interface in 18% of the main stem sediments. This biogenic gas is found either in the sediments in the lower salinity reaches of the Bay, or confined to sediments which overline infilled palaeodrainage channels formed during the Wisconsinan low sea level stand (approximately 18 ka). Gas associated with the old drainage network does not correlate with present bathymetry or sedimentological patterns. Some differences between the gas-charged and gas-free sediments are: (1) gas-charged sediments have water contents 10-20% higher than comparable gas-free cores; (2) organic matter is better presented with depth in the gas-charged sediments (upwards of 60% more at one depth); (3 monosulphides are dominant sulphide mineral phase within the gas-charged sediments, comprising over 40% of the total sulphur. Within the gas-free sediments monosulphides are significant only near the sediment-water interface and rapidly become negligible with depth, and; (4) cores of gas-charged sediments are highly colour-banded due to preservation of sulphide mineral variations, while gas-free cores are diagenetically altered to pyrite. ?? 1992.
Additional Publication Details
Distribution and effects of shallow gas on bulk estuarine sediment properties