Performance of a hydrostatic sampler for collecting samples at the water-sediment interface in lakes

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Fernando PEDROZO
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The water-sediment interface plays a significant role in the determination of the trophic degree of a waterbody. Numerous redox reactions take place there, resulting in the release of contaminants from the sediments to the water column. The aim of the present work was to develop an equipment for collecting samples from the water-sediment interface. Such equipment was to have a simple design, low construction cost, no depth limitations, and high levels of personal safety and to be reliable in the collection of samples. The performance of the hydrostatic sampler thus developed was tested against samples collected either remotely with a corer or directly with syringes by autonomous divers. The hydrostatic sampler permits access to depths where the costs of the traditional diving methodology are expensive, and where working conditions are dangerous for the diver. The hydrostatic sampler provides an additional means of collecting samples from the water-sediment interface, which together with pore-water samples, facilitates the investigation and understanding of chemical mechanisms in lakes, for instance, those that control the P release from sediment to the water column.

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