During August 1995, the vertical concentration profile of dissolved and particulate uranium exhibited strong non-conservative characteristics in the upper 30 m of Framvaren Fjord. There was a pronounced peak in both particulate (> 0.2 ??m; 1.09 nM) and dissolved (< 0.2 ??m; 17.06 nM) uranium in the finely stratified waters at the O2/H2S interface which is positioned well within the euphotic zone at about 20-21 m. Such concentration maxima at the redox boundary are also observed for dissolved organic carbon (DEC), Sr and Ba. Dissolved U levels seen in the water column from 18 m down to 30 m exceeded the high salinity (salinity = 35) U concentrations (13.63 ?? 0.84 nM; Chen, J.H., Edwards, R.L., Wasserburg, G.L., 1986. 238U, 234U and 232Th in seawater. Earth Planet Sci. Lett. 80, 241-251.) observed uniformly in the open ocean. A prolific population of S microbes (e.g., Chromatium, Chlorobium sp.) flourishes at the O2/H2S interface. The source of elevated U at the redox boundary must be due to microbial uptake and subsequent release processes rather than dilution from oceanic uranium. Uranium oxidation state determinations in waters from 1, 22 and 30 m depth reveal that reduced U(IV) is not present in significant abundance, and that the chemical and/or biological reduction of hexavalent uranium is largely inhibited. Our results suggest that U and other trace constituents such as DOC, Sr, Ba, Fe(II), Mn(II) are greatly modified by direct and indirect microbial transformation reactions which are most concentrated across the redox transition zone in Framvaren Fjord.
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Uranium biogeochemistry across the redox transition zone of a permanently stratified fjord: Framvaren, Norway