Environmental Earth Sciences

, 78:684 | Cite as

Sequential extraction analysis of U, Sr, V, Ni, Cr, B, and Mo in sediments from the Al-Batin Alluvial Fan, Southern Iraq

  • Majid AlkinaniEmail author
  • Oliver Wiche
  • Wael Kanoua
  • Broder Merkel
Original Article


The distribution of U, Sr, V, Ni, Cr, B, and Mo in sediments of the Al-Batin Alluvial Fan in southern Iraq was investigated. A total of 18 sediment samples were collected in the study area and the clay and silt fraction was analyzed using a six-step sequential extraction method. Results of the sequential extraction were used to evaluate the potential origin and environmental impacts of the selected elements. Except for Sr, the highest average concentration of the investigated trace elements is mainly in the residual fraction with the following descending order: Cr > V > B > Ni > Mo > U. This suggests a geogenic origin of these trace elements. Sr occurs mainly in the acid soluble fraction due to its authigenic formation from the underlying carbonate beds. Anthropogenic pollution in the study area is restricted to agricultural activities and fertilizer application which adds B and Mo to the soil in some cases. The Sr elevation and fractionation within the sediments suggests a possibility of Sr accumulation in cultivated crops, and thus a potential risk to infants and children. High concentrations and fractionation pattern of U in three samples shows a considerable risk to the environment in certain areas.


Trace elements Mobility Fractionation Potential risk to the environment 



This work was funded by the Iraqi Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research, and the IRAQ Geological Survey (GEOSURV-IRAQ). The authors especially thanks Dr. Sascha Kummer, Christin Moschner and Katja Winkler for their help in the laboratory analyses. In addition, the first author is grateful to Dr. Jawdat Al-Hamdani for all his hints and useful suggestions.


  1. Afaj A, Schüth Ch, Kallioras A, Hassan H, Thejeel S (2015) Spatial variation of boron in groundwater in South Iraq. Int J Environ Stud 72(4):696–712. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Agnieszka J, Barbara G (2012) Chromium, nickel and vanadium mobility in soils derived from fluvioglacial sands. J Hazard Mater 30(237–238):315–322. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Al-Bassam K, Yousif M (2014) Geochemical distribution and background values of some minor and trace elements in Iraqi soils and recent sediments. Iraqi Bull Geol Min 10(2):109–156Google Scholar
  4. Alkinani M, Merkel B (2017) Hydrochemical and isotopic investigation of groundwater of Al-Batin alluvial fan aquifer, Southern Iraq. Environ Earth Sci 76:301. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Alkinani M, Merkel B (2018) Geochemistry of sediments of the Al-Batin alluvial fan, Southern Iraq. Environ Earth Sci 77:282. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Alkinani M, Kanoua W, Merkel B (2016) Uranium in groundwater of the Al-Batin Alluvial Fan aquifer, south Iraq. Environ Earth Sci 75:869. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Al-Muslih S (2012) Hydrogeological and hydrochemical study of Al-Basrah quadrangle (NH-38-8) and Abadan quadrangle (NH-39-5) scale 1:250,000. Iraq-GEOSURV, international report no. 3402 (unpublished) Google Scholar
  8. Al-Sharbati F, Ma’ala K (1983) Report on the regional geological mapping of west Zubair area. Iraq-GEOSURV, international report no. 1345 (unpublished) Google Scholar
  9. Atiaa A, Al-Aboodi A (2006) Simulation of flow regime of Dibdibba Dandy aquifer in Safwan-Zubair Area, South of Iraq. Iraqi J Sci 47(1):119–137Google Scholar
  10. ATSDR (2004) Toxicological profile for strontium. Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, AtlantaGoogle Scholar
  11. ATSDR (2012) Toxicological profile for vanadium. Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, AtlantaGoogle Scholar
  12. Baes C, Garten C, Taylor F, Witherspoon J (1986) Long-term environmental problems of radioactively contaminated land. Environ Int 12:545–553CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Baran A, Tarnawski M (2015) Assessment of heavy metals mobility and toxicity in contaminated sediments by sequential extraction and a battery of bioassays. Ecotoxicology 24:1279–1293. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Beltrán R, Rosa J, Santos J, Beltrán M, Gómez-Ariza L (2010) Heavy metal mobility assessment in sediments from the Odiel River (Iberian Pyritic Belt) using sequential extraction. Environ Earth Sci 61:1493. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Datta S, Rattan R, Suribabu K, Datta S (2002) Fractionation and colorimetric determination of boron in soils. J Plant Nutr Soil Sci 165:179–184.;2-Q CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Domergue F, Védy J (1992) Mobility of heavy metals in soil profiles. Int J Environ Anal Chem 46:13–23. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. EPA (2007) Drinking water standards and health advisories table. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Bruce Macler, Drinking Water OfficeGoogle Scholar
  18. Fischer R, Ohl J (1970) Bibliography on the geology and resources of vanadium to 1968. Geological Survey Bulletin 1316. Library of congress catalog-card no. 73-606274Google Scholar
  19. Gale R, Gale S, Winchester H (2006) Inorganic pollution of the sediments of the River Torrens, South Australia. Environ Geol 50:62–75CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. He Q, Ren Y, Mohamed I, Ali M, Hassan W, Zeng F (2013) Assessment of trace and heavy metal distribution by four sequential extraction procedures in a contaminated soil. Soil Water Res 8:71–76CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Hou J, Evans L, Spiers G (1994) Boron fractionation in soils. Commun Soil Sci Plant Anal 25:1841–1853. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. IPCS (1998) Environmental health criteria 204, Boron. International Programme on Chemical Safety (IPCS), World Health Organization GenevaGoogle Scholar
  23. Jassim R, Al-Jiburi B (2009) Geology of Iraqi Southern Desert, stratigraphy. Iraqi Bull Geol Min Spec Issue 2:53–76Google Scholar
  24. Jena V, Gupta S, Dhundhel R, Matic N, Bilinski S, Devic N (2013) Determination of total heavy metal by sequential extraction from soil. Int J Res Environ Sci Technol 3(1):35–38Google Scholar
  25. Kabata-Pendias A (2011) Trace elements in soil and plants (4th edition). CRC Press, Boca Raton, p 520Google Scholar
  26. Konradi E, Frentiu T, Ponta M, Cordos E (2005) Use of sequential extraction to assess metal fractionation in soils from Bozanta Mare, Romania. Acta Universitatis Cibiniensis Seria F Chemia 8(2):5–12Google Scholar
  27. Kotoky P, Bora B, Baruah N, Baruah J, Baruah P, Borah G (2003) Chemical fractionation of heavy metals in soils around oil installations, Assam. Chem Speciat Bioavailab 15(4):115–126. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Krachler M, Mohl C, Emons H, Shotyk W (2002) Analytical procedures for the determination of selected trace elements in peat and plant samples by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. Spectrochim Acta Part B 57:1277–1289. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Larsson M (2014) Vanadium in soils, chemistry and ecotoxicity. PhD thesis, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences Uppsala (unpublished)Google Scholar
  30. Liu Y, Luan F, Burgos W (2014) Redox-driven dissolution of clay minerals by uranium under high pressure CO2 conditions. Chem Geol 383:100–106. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Ma L, Rao G (1997) Chemical fractionation of cadmium, copper, nickel, and zinc in contaminated soils. J Environ Qual 26(1):259–264. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Maiz I, Arambarri I, Garcia R, Millan E (2000) Evaluation of heavy metal availability in polluted soils by two sequential extraction procedures using factor analysis. Environ Pollut 110(1):3–9CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. MHRA (2014) Medicines and healthcare products regulatory agency. Strontium ranelate: cardiovascular risk, GOV.UKGoogle Scholar
  34. Okoro H, Fatoki O, Adekola F, Ximba B, Snyman R (2012) A review of sequential extraction procedures for heavy metals speciation in soil and sediments. Open Access Sci Rep 1(3):1–9. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Oze C, Bird D, Fendorf S (2007) Genesis of hexavalent chromium from natural sources in soil and groundwater. PNAS 104:6544–6549. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Padbhushan R, Kumar D (2017) Crops and soils review fractions of soil boron: a review. J Agric Sci. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Salbu B, Krekling T, Oughton D (1998) Characterization of radioactive particles in the environment. Analyst 123:843–849CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Shaheena S, Rinklebe J (2014) Geochemical fractions of chromium, copper, and zinc and their vertical distribution in floodplain soil profiles along the Central Elbe River, Germany. Geoderma 228–229:142–159. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Silveira M, Alleoni L, O’Connor G, Chang A (2006) Heavy metal sequential extraction methods—a modification for tropical soils. Chemosphere 64:1929–1938CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Smedley P, Cooper D, Ander E, Milne C, Lapworth D (2014) Occurrence of molybdenum in British surface water and groundwater: distributions, controls and implication for water supply. Appl Geochem 40:144–154. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Sungur A, Soylak M, Ozcan H (2016) Chemical fractionation, mobility and environmental impacts of heavy metals in greenhouse soils from Çanakkale, Turkey. Environ Earth Sci 75:334. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Sungur A, Soylak M, Ozcan H (2019) Fractionation, source identification and risk assessments for heavy metals in soils near a small-scale industrial area (Çanakkale-Turkey). Soil Sediment Contam Int J 28(2):213–227. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Tashakor M, Yaacob W, Mohamad H, Abdul Ghani A, Saadati N (2014) Assessment of selected sequential extraction and the toxicity characteristic leaching test as indices of metal mobility in serpentinite soils. Chem Speciat Bioavailab 26(3):139–147. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Tessier A, Campbell P, Bisson M (1979) Sequential extraction procedure for the speciation of particulate trace metals. Anal Chem 51:844–851CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Ure A, Quevauviller P, Muntau H, Griepink B (1993) Speciation of heavy metals in soils and sediments. An account of the improvement and harmonization of extraction techniques undertaken under the auspices of the BCR of the commission of the European communities. Int J Environ Anal Chem 51:135–151Google Scholar
  46. Vandenhove H, Vanhoudt N, Duquène L, Antunes K, Wannijn J (2014) Comparison of two sequential extraction procedures for uranium fractionation in contaminated soils. J Environ Radioact. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Venkatramanan S, Ramkumar T, Anithamary I, Jonathan M (2013) Speciation of selected heavy metals geochemistry in surface sediments from Tirumalairajan river estuary, east coast of India. Environ Monit Assess 185:6563–6578. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Wisawapipat W, Kretzschmar R (2017) Solid phase speciation and solubility of vanadium in highly weathered soils. Environ Sci Technol 51(15):8254–8262. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Xu Y, Huang J, Brandl H (2016) An optimised sequential extraction scheme for evaluation of vanadium mobility in soils. J Environ Sci. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Yacoub S (1992) The geology of Al-Basrah, Abadan and Bubyian quadrangle sheets NH-38-8, NH-39-5 and NH-39-9 (GM 38, 39 and 43) Scale 1:250,000. Iraq-GEOSURV, international report no. 2259 (unpublished) Google Scholar
  51. Yacoub S (2011) Stratigraphy of the Mesopotamia Plain. Iraqi Bull Geol Min Spec Issue Geol Mesop Plain 4:47–82Google Scholar
  52. Yutong Z, Qing X, Shenggao L (2016) Chemical fraction, leachability, and bioaccessibility of heavy metals in contaminated soils, Northeast China. Environ Sci Pollut Res 23:24107–24114. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Zimmerman A, Weindorf D (2010) Heavy metal and trace metal analysis in soil by sequential extraction: a review of procedures. Int J Anal Chem. (Article ID 387803) CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Iraq Geological SurveyBaghdadIraq
  2. 2.Biology/Ecology Unit, Institute of BiosciencesTU Bergakademie FreibergFreibergGermany
  3. 3.Department of Petroleum Engineering, Chemical and Petroleum Engineering FacultyAl-Baath UniversityHomsSyria
  4. 4.Geology InstituteTU Bergakademie FreibergFreibergGermany

Personalised recommendations