Early diagenesis and isotopic composition of lead in Lake Laisan, northern Sweden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Water column (dissolved/suspended phase, sediment traps) and sediment data (pore-water, solid-phase sediment) were combined with stable Pb and Pb-210 isotope data to trace the early diagenetic behaviour and geochemical cycling of Pb in Lake Laisan, a lake which has received large quantities of anthropogenic Pb since the early 1940s. Early diagenetic remobilisation of Pb is indicated by a subsurface pore-water Pb maximum (120 mug 1(-1)) in the oxic surface layer of the sediment, where the solid-phase Pb concentration is 3400-4600 mug g(-1). The remobilisation of Pb appears to be caused by a pH-controlled desorption of Pb from solid-phase sediment, which is consistent with a model describing surface complexation of Pb(II) on hydrous goethite surfaces. The diffusive Pb flux from the subsurface pore-water maximum towards the sediment surface (36 mug cm(-2) year(-1)) exceeds the depositional Pb flux (8.6 mug cm(-2) year(-1)) by approximately a factor of four, indicating that Pb is highly mobile in the sediment. Stable Pb isotope data and a mass balance calculation suggest that Pb diffusing upwards is, to a large extent, trapped in the surface sediment. Lead that may diffuse into the slightly alkaline lake water appears to be efficiently sorbed to suspended particulate matter, resulting in low dissolved Pb concentrations in the water column (0.040-0.046 mug 1(-1)). Sorption of Pb to suspended particulate matter is consistent with the elevated suspended particulate Pb concentrations in the hypolimnion (3800-4000 mug g(-1)), and the fact that the stable Pb isotopic compositions of suspended matter and pore-water are similar.


  • A Widerlund
  • Per Roos
  • L Gunneriusson
  • J Ingri
  • H Holmstrom
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Radiology, Nuclear Medicine and Medical Imaging


  • pore-water, early diagenesis, lead isotopes, Lake Laisan, Laisvall
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)183-197
JournalChemical Geology
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - 2002
Publication categoryResearch