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Singlet Oxygen Photogeneration in Coastal Seawater: Prospect of Large-Scale Modeling in Seawater Surface and Its Environmental Significance

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posted on 28.04.2020, 12:34 authored by Michael O. Sunday, Kazuhiko Takeda, Hiroshi Sakugawa
Chromophoric-dissolved organic matter (CDOM) acts as the precursor to singlet oxygen (1O2) in natural waters, while water acts as the main scavenger. In this study, we showed that 1O2 in coastal seawater can be successfully predicted from CDOM parameters. The 1O2 steady-state concentration [1O2]ss and photoformation rate (R1O2) varied by a factor of 6 across 13 sampling stations in the Seto Inland Sea, Japan, ranging from 1.2 to 8.2 × 10–14 M and 3.32 to 22.7 × 10–9 M s–1, respectively. Investigation of CDOM optical properties revealed that CDOM abundance measured as the absorption coefficient at 300 nm (a300) had the strongest correlation (r = 0.96, p < 0.001) with [1O2]ss, while parameters indicative of CDOM quality (e.g., spectral slope) did not influence [1O2]ss. A linear relationship between [1O2]ss and a300, normalized to a sunlight intensity of 0.91 kW/m2, was derived as [1O2]ss (10–14 M) = 2.12­(a300) + 0.48. This was then used to predict [1O2]ss using a300 values from a subsequent, independent sampling exercise conducted 2 years after the first sampling. There was a good agreement (r = 0.93, p < 0.001) between the predicted values and the experimentally determined values based on a 95% prediction interval plot. Kinetic estimations using [1O2]ss suggest that 1O2 mediates the degradation of tetrabromobisphenol A in surface seawater (t1/2 = 0.63 days) while also contributing to the indirect photolysis of methyl mercury. The findings from this study suggest that large-scale modeling of 1O2 generation in surface seawater from CDOM parameters is possible with useful environmental significance for determining the fate of pollutants.

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