Metallurgical wastes displaying various chemical and mineralogical properties may reveal different behaviour under exposure to weathering conditions. The latter impact the stability of the wastes, which often results in metal release and subsequent pollution problems. The aim of this study was to compare the weathering of two types of metallurgical wastes (i.e., copper slag and lead matte) exposed to artificial root exudates organic solutions and demineralized water. The results of experimental weathering demonstrated that the extent of waste dissolution depends on the composition of weathering solution as well as on the waste properties. Artificial root exudates rich in organic acids were found to enhance elements release from sulphide rich lead matte and copper glassy slag relative to demineralized water control. The release of elements from the wastes exposed to artificial root exudates for 7 weeks reached 17.8% of Pb and 4.97% of Cu, for lead matte and granulated slag respectively. The most leachable elements may result from the dissolution of intermetallic phases hosting these elements. The fraction size ranging from 0.25–0.5 mm to 1–2 mm was found to be a minor factor in elements release under studied conditions.
Samples of historical terrazzo floor from the Jewish Historical Institute in Warsaw, dated back to the thirties of the twentieth century, have been analysed. Investigations by polarised optical microscopy, scanning microscopy, powder X-ray diffraction and simultaneous thermal analysis were preformed. Based on the results obtained, it was concluded that terrazzo tiles were prepared on the basis of ordinary Portland cement and aggregate, dominated with crushed stone (marble, serpentinite, limestone and marl), accompanied by sparse quartz sand grains. The binding mass was colourised with the use of pigments containing iron ions. The occurrence of altered serpentinite and marble grains, the latter clouded and partly replaced with micrite, the presence of portlandite, indicate the terrazzo tiles were subjected to thermal impact. This is related to the fire that took place at the beginning of World War II. Based on this study, repair mortars were formulated, on one hand compatible with the authentic ones, on the other retaining traces of fire.
Long-term regional emissions of air pollutants in the second half of the twentieth century led to strong changes in the quality of surface and groundwater in the Karkonosze Mts. As a result, in the most valuable natural parts of these mountains, protected in the area of the Karkonosze National Park, there was strong deforestation, which assumed the size of an ecological disaster. The various protective activities introduced at the beginning of the 1990s led to the improvement not only of the water quality, but also other ecosystems. Based on the chemical analyses of water sampled in 40 points located in the whole Park, the current state of water quality was assessed. Concentrations of some microelements were higher only in few points compared to the drinking water quality standards, which indicates a significant improvement in water quality.
Monika Ciężka, Maria Kossowska, Piotr Paneth and Maciej Górka
The contribution of C, N and S, as well as the isotopic composition of C and N of atmospheric pollutants, are assumed to be reflected in the organic compounds inbuilt into the lichen thallus. The chemical and isotopic analyses were carried out on lichen Hypogymnia physodes samples gathered from Picea abies and Larix decidua, collected in 13 sampling points located in Karkonoski National Park and its closest vicinity in 2011. The results for %C, %N and %S varied from 43.44 to 46.79%, from 0.86 to 1.85% and from 0.07 to 0.27 %, respectively. The δ13C values ranged from −26.6 to −24.6‰, whereas δ15N values varied from −13.0 to −6.8‰. The ranges in isotope composition suggest different sources of C and N for Karpacz compared to the remaining sampling sites. For Karpacz, the δ13C values suggest (in case the fractionation product-substrate does not exist and Δ=0) that the dominant sources are coal combustion processes, whereas for remaining sampling points, the δ13C values are ambiguous and are masked by many mixed natural and anthropogenic processes. With the same assumption that Δ=0, the δ15N values suggest that transport is not a dominant source of nitrogen within Karpacz city. Moreover, in this study we tested the possible fractionation (Δ) for carbon and nitrogen, assuming that within the investigated area, the source of carbon is probably CO2 and/or DIC (HCO3−) dissolved in precipitation, while the source of nitrogen is NOx and/or NO3− ion. The calculated fractionation factors were: (i) for gaseous carbon compounds ΔCO2-Corg value from −13.4 to −11.4‰, whereas for the ions form ΔHCO3−-Corg value from −16.6 to −14.6‰, (ii) for nitrogen gaseous compounds ΔNOx-Norg value between apx. −17 and −5‰, whereas for the ions form ΔNO3−-Norg value between −9.9 and −3.7‰.
The karst-fractured medium constitutes a considerable groundwater capacity, as shown on the example of the Kleśnica River basin. The paleozoic crystalline limestones in the research area are good collectors of the groundwater. The Kleśnica River basin, one of the largest crystalline limestone lens, is situated in the Sudety Mountains. Groundwater renewable resources were distinguished with the use of hydrological methods, on the basis of hydrometric measurements of the flow discharge of the Kleśnica River during the low-flow period (2009–2010). The mean module of the groundwater runoff equals 20.79 dm3/s*km2, and includes the study of the river catchments areas with extremely high groundwater runoff. The groundwater renewable resources in the Kleśnica River basin are almost twice higher than in the neighbouring river basins (the Kamienica and Morawka River basins), in which there are no significant outcrops of carbonate rocks. These considerable renewable resources also provide a high runoff in the spring, 7.98 dm3/s*km2. The high values of the runoffs indicate, that the groundwater is coming from the regional circulation system and, on a smaller scale, from the local system. The groundwater from both systems flows into the fractured system through the karst of carbonate massif rocks and their weathering fringes.
The historic bricks from the ducal castle on Ostrów Tumski (Wrocław), one of the first brickwork structures in the Lower Silesia, which dates back to the XII and XIII century, were studied and characterised by a combination of classical petrographic studies (polarising microscopy), scanning microscopy, thermal analysis and X-ray diffraction. The combined results of these methods suggest that the firing temperature ranges from 950°C, through the most common temperatures of 850–900°C, to the infrequent temperatures below 750°C. Most of the bricks were fired under oxidising conditions, occasionally over a sequence of oxidising and reducing steps, resulting in a sandwich structure. The results indicate, that low-calcareous raw materials were used, presumably Miocene-Pliocene ‘flamy clays’, exploited a few kilometres away from the castle and tempered with locally obtained sand from the Odra river. Only small differences have been recognized in: 1) clay to aplastic material ratio, 2) amount of accessory minerals, 3) grain-size distribution of aplastic materials, but no significant changes in the brick technology were observed. The observed variability corresponds well to the different constructing phases, identified previously on the basis of archaeological work. Thus, our work proves that a detailed mineralogical and petrological study may help to identify different construction phases in historic monuments.
Lidia Kasperczyk, Magdalena Modelska and Stanisław Staśko
The article discusses the content and source of mineral nitrogen compounds in groundwater, based on the data collected in two river catchments in two series (spring and autumn 2014). The study area comprises two catchments located in Lower Silesia, Poland - Cicha Woda and Sąsiecznica. Both catchments are characterised agricultural character of development. In the both researched areas, the points of State Environmental Monitoring (SEM) are located but only the Cicha Woda area is classified as nitrate vulnerable zone (NVZ). To analyse and compare the contamination of Quaternary and Neogene aquifers, the concentration of nitrates, nitrites, ammonium and potassium ions was measured primarily. Results showed the exceedance of nitrogen mineral forms of shallow groundwater Quaternary aquifer in both basins. The concentration of nitrates range from 0.08 to 142.12 mgNO3 −−/dm3 (Cicha Woda) and from 2.6 to 137.65 mg NO3 −−/dm3 (Sąsiecznica). The major source of pollution is probably the intensive agriculture activity. It causes a degradation of the shallow groundwater because of nitrate, nitrite, potassium, phosphates and ammonium contents. There was no observed contamination of anthropogenic origin in the deeper Neogene aquifer of Cicha Woda catchment.
Michał Bukała, Katarzyna Zboińska and Mateusz Szadkowski
The following paper presents the field trip through the unique mantle sequence composed of peridotites and exposed along Atalante Geo-Trail in Troodos Geopark, Cyprus. This manuscript briefly summarises data from many papers and presents authors’ own field observations, in order to provide information on evolution of enigmatic Troodos mantle peridotites.
The two-mica granite from Gęsiniec (Strzelin Granitic Massif, SW Poland) consists of quartz, K-feldspar, normally zoned plagioclase (30 ± 7 % An), subordinate biotite and muscovite and magmatic andalusite. Andalusite crystallised before the outer parts of plagioclase grains were formed. Biotite has constant Fe/(Fe + Mg) ratio of approximately 0.81. Five textural types of muscovite occur in the granite: (1) muscovite replacing andalusite, (2) embayed interstitial muscovite, (3) muscovite forming aggregates with biotite, (4) muscovite accompanying biotite and chlorite in microfissures and (5) fine muscovite forming fringes at the contact between larger muscovite plates and K-feldspar. They are commonly associated with albite.
Crystallisation of muscovite started significantly below the granite solidus, mostly by the replacement of andalusite. Formation of muscovite continued during cooling of host rock. The growth of individual plates was initiated at different undercoolings and the plates whose crystallisation was frozen at different stages of growth occur. Those that were formed earlier are richer in titanium and iron relative to the later ones. As the rock contains no Ti and Fe saturating phases, the content of Ti and Mg in muscovite depends on their local availability. The homogeneous Fe/(Fe + Mg) ratio of biotite indicates that it was re-equilibrated at the post-magmatic stage.