Fluid flow, methane fluxes, carbonate precipitation and biogeochemical turnover in gas hydrate-bearing sedimenta at Hydrate Ridge, Cascadia Margin: Numerical modeling and mass balances.

Luff, Roger and Wallmann, Klaus J. G. (2003) Fluid flow, methane fluxes, carbonate precipitation and biogeochemical turnover in gas hydrate-bearing sedimenta at Hydrate Ridge, Cascadia Margin: Numerical modeling and mass balances. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 67 (18). pp. 3403-3421. DOI 10.1016/S0016-7037(03)00127-3.

[img] Text
1-s2.0-S0016703703001273-main.pdf - Published Version
Restricted to Registered users only

Download (746Kb) | Contact

Supplementary data:

Abstract

A numerical model was applied to investigate and to quantify biogeochemical processes and methane turnover in gas hydrate-bearing surface sediments from a cold vent site situated at Hydrate Ridge, an accretionary structure located in the Cascadia Margin subduction zone. Steady state simulations were carried out to obtain a comprehensive overview on the activity in these sediments which are covered with bacterial mats and are affected by strong fluid flow from below. The model results underline the dominance of advective fluid flow that forces a large inflow of methane from below (869 mumol cm(-2) a(-1)) inducing high oxidation rates in the surface layers. Anaerobic methane oxidation is the major process, proceeding at a depth-integrated rate of 870 mumol cm(-2) a(-1). A significant fraction (14%) of bicarbonate produced by anaerobic methane oxidation is removed from the fluids by precipitation of authigenic aragonite and calcite. The total rate of carbonate precipitation (120 mumol cm(-2) a(-1)) allows for the build-up of a massive carbonate layer with a thickness of I m over a period of 20,000 years. Aragonite is the major carbonate mineral formed by anaerobic methane oxidation if the flow velocity of methane-charge fluids is high enough ( greater than or equal to10 cm a(-1)) to maintain super-saturation with respect to this highly soluble carbonate phase. It precipitates much faster within the studied surface sediments than previously observed in abiotic laboratory experiments, suggesting microbial catalysis. The investigated station is characterized by high carbon and oxygen turnover rates (approximate to1000 mumol cm(-2) a(-1)) that are well beyond the rates observed at other continental slope sites not affected by fluid venting. This underlines the strong impact of fluid venting on the benthic system, even though the flow velocity of 10 cm a(-1) derived by the model is relative low compared to fluid flow rates found at other cold vent sites. Non-steady state simulations using measured fluid flow velocities as forcing demonstrate a rapid respond of the sediments within a few days to changes in advective flow. Moreover, they reveal that efficient methane oxidation in these sediments prevents methane outflow into the bottom water over a wide range of fluid flow velocities (<80 cm a(-1)). Only at flow rates exceeding approximately 100 cm a(-1), does dissolved methane break through the sediment surface to induce large fluxes of up to 5000 mumol CH4 cm(2) a(-1) into the overlying bottom water.

Document Type: Article
Research affiliation: OceanRep > SFB 574 > A3
OceanRep > SFB 574 > C5
OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB2 Marine Biogeochemistry > FB2-MG Marine Geosystems
OceanRep > SFB 574
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: No
DOI etc.: 10.1016/S0016-7037(03)00127-3
ISSN: 0016-7037
Projects: SFB574, TECFLUX, LOTUS, OMEGA, GEOTECH
Contribution Number:
ProjectNumber
SFB 57425
Expeditions/Models/Experiments:
Date Deposited: 07 Apr 2010 11:50
Last Modified: 08 Sep 2017 08:53
URI: http://oceanrep.geomar.de/id/eprint/3788

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item

Document Downloads

More statistics for this item...