Environmental Geochemistry of Damodar River Basin, East Coast of India (1999)

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Water and bed sediment samples collected from the Damodar River and its tributaries were analysed to study elemental chemistry and suspended load characteristics of the river basin. Na and Ca are the dominant cations and HCO3 is the dominant anion. The water chemistry of the Damodar River basin strongly reflects the dominance of continental weathering aided by atmospheric and anthropogenic activities in the catchment area. High concentrations of SO4 and PO4 at some sites indicate the mining and anthropogenic impact on water quality. The high concentration of dissolved silica, relatively high (Na+K)/TZ+ ratio (0.2–0.4) and low equivalent ratio of (Ca+Mg)/(Na+K) indicate that dissolved ions contribute significantly to the weathering of aluminosilicate minerals of crystalline rocks. The seasonal data show a minimum ionic concentration in the monsoon season, reflecting the influence of atmospheric precipitation on total dissolved solids contents. The suspended sediments show a positive correlation with discharge and both discharge and suspended load reach their maximum value during the monsoon season. Kaolinite is the mineral that is possibly in equilibrium with the water. This implies that the chemistry of the Damodar River water favours kaolinite formation. The concentration of heavy metals in the finer size fraction (<37 μ m) is significantly higher than the bulk composition. The geoaccumulation index values calculated for Fe, Mn, Zn, Ni and Cr are well below zero, suggesting that there is no pollution from these metals in Damodar River sediments.
Year: 1999
Language: English
In: Environmental Geology, 37 (1-2): 124-136 p.

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 Record created 2014-02-05, last modified 2014-02-05