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 CWEEE  Vol.5 No.1 , January 2016
Factor-Cluster Analysis and Effect of Particle Size on Total Recoverable Metal Concentration in Sediments of the Lower Tennessee River Basin
Abstract: Total recoverable concentration of five elements of concern: Aluminum, Iron, Manganese, Arsenic and Lead (Al, Fe, Mn, As, Pb) were measured by inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectrometry, and mass spectrometry. The results show that sediment texture plays a controlling role in the concentrations and their spatial distribution. Principal Component Analysis and Cluster Analysis were used to analyze the grain sizes of the sediments. Result of texture analysis classified the samples into three main components in percentages: sand, silt, and clay. Significant differences among the element concentrations in the three groups were observed, and the concentrations of the elements in each group are reported in this study. Most of the elements have their highest concentrations in the fine-grained samples with clay playing an important role, in comparison with the sand component of the soil/sediment samples. There appears to be a strong correlation between samples with high silt, and clay content with the areas of elevated concentrations for Al, Fe, and Mn. There was a strong correlation between aluminum and lead with clay; lead with silt; and sand with manganese, aluminum, and lead. However, there was no strong relationship between the soil textures and iron or arsenic. All elements measured were statistically significant (at P ≤ 0.05) by watershed. The upland areas, and depositional areas’ spatial variation of element concentrations in the sediments were also observed, which was in line with the spatial distribution of the grain size and was thought to be related to the watersheds hydrological dynamics.
Cite this paper: Okweye, P. , Garner, K. , Overton, A. and Moss, E. (2016) Factor-Cluster Analysis and Effect of Particle Size on Total Recoverable Metal Concentration in Sediments of the Lower Tennessee River Basin. Computational Water, Energy, and Environmental Engineering, 5, 10-26. doi: 10.4236/cweee.2016.51002.
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