Modeling Earth Systems and Environment

, Volume 5, Issue 4, pp 1743–1750 | Cite as

Efficacy of magnetic susceptibility technique to estimate metal concentration in some igneous rocks

  • Shamsollah AyoubiEmail author
  • Vali Adman
  • Maryam Yousefifard
Original Article


The present study was conducted to explore the relationships between magnetic measures and some heavy metals in some igneous rocks in north-western Iran. For this purpose, four major rocks including ultrabasic, basalt, granite and andesite were selected and totally 60 samples were collected. The collected samples were analyzed for magnetic measurements (\( \chi_{\text{lf}} \), \( \chi_{\text{hf}} \), \( \chi_{\text{fd}} \)) and heavy metals concentration (Fe, Cr, Cu, Zn, Co, Mn and Ni) by atomic absorption spectroscopy. Some samples were analyzed by XRD for iron mineral characterization. The results indicated that the highest and lowest \( \chi_{\text{lf}} \) and all measured heavy metals were found in ultrabasic (as a basic rock) and in granite (as an acidic rock), respectively. X-ray analysis confirmed the higher presence of magnetite/maghemite in basic rocks. Positive and significant correlations were found between magnetic susceptibility at low frequency and all heavy metals’ concentration except for Ni. Overall, magnetic susceptibility serves as a preliminary assessment of rock samples, providing rapid, non-destructive, economical and easy information about heavy metal concentration in igneous rocks in the study area.


X- ray diffraction Magnetite Maghemite Ferrimagnetic minerals Metals 



  1. Ajayi A, Kamson OF (1983) Determination of lead in roadside dust in Lagos city by atomic absorption spectrophotometry. Environ Int 9:397–400Google Scholar
  2. Alloway BJ (1990) Heavy metals in soil. Blackie and Son, GlasgrowGoogle Scholar
  3. Aydin A, Ferre C, Aslan Z (2007) The magnetic susceptibility of granitic rocks as a proxy for geochemical composition: example from the Saruhan granitoids, NE Turkey. Tectonophysics 441:85–95Google Scholar
  4. Ayoubi S, Karami M (2019) Pedotransfer functions for predicting heavy metals in natural soils using magnetic measures and soil properties. J Geochem Explor 197:212–219Google Scholar
  5. Ayoubi S, Ahmadi M, Abdi MR, Abbaszadeh Afshar F (2012) Relationships of 137Cs inventory with magnetic measures of calcareous soils of hilly region in Iran. J Environ Radioact 112:45–51Google Scholar
  6. Ayoubi S, Amiri S, Tajik S (2014) Lithogenic and anthropogenic impacts on soil surface magnetic susceptibility in an arid region of central Iran. Arch Agron Soil Sci 60:1467–1483Google Scholar
  7. Ayoubi S, Adman Vali, Yousefifard M (2018a) Use of magnetic susceptibility to assess metals concentration in soils developed on a range of parent materials. Ecotoxicol Environ Saf 168:138–145Google Scholar
  8. Ayoubi S, Soltani Z, Khademi H (2018b) Particle size distribution of heavy metals and magnetic susceptibility in an industrial site. Bull Environ Contam Toxicol 100:708–714Google Scholar
  9. Ayoubi S, Jababri M, Khademi H (2018c) Multiple linear modeling between soil properties, magnetic susceptibility and heavy metals in various landuses. Model Earth Syst Environ 4:579–589Google Scholar
  10. Bityukova L, Scholger R, Birke M (1999) Magnetic susceptibility as indicator of environmental pollution of soil in Tallinn. Phys Chem Earth 24:829–835Google Scholar
  11. Campy M, Macaire JJ (1989) Géologie des formations superficielles: Géodynamique–faciès–utilisation, Paris, Masson, 433 p.Google Scholar
  12. Carlson L, Schwertmann U (1981) Natural ferrihydrites in surface deposits from Finland and their association witca. Geochim Cosmochim Acta 45:421–429Google Scholar
  13. Cervi EC, Da Costa ACS, Junior IGDS (2014) Magnetic susceptibility and the spatial variability of heavy metal in soils developed on basalt. J Appl Geophys 111:377–383Google Scholar
  14. Chen T, Liu X, Li X, Zhao K, Zhang J, Xu J, Shi J, Dahlgren RA (2009) Heavy metal sources identification and sampling uncertainty analysis in a filed scale vegetable of Hangzhou, China. Environ Pollut 157:1003–1010Google Scholar
  15. Costa ACS, Bigham JM, Rhoton FE, Traina SJ (1999) Quantification and characterization of maghemite in soils derived from volcanic rocks in southern Brazil. Clay Miner 47:466–473Google Scholar
  16. Dankoub Z, Ayoubi S, Khademi H, Sheng Gao Lu (2012) Spatial Distribution of Magnetic Properties and Selected Heavy Metals as Affected by Land Use in Calcareous Soils of the Isfahan Region, Central Iran. Pedosphere 22:33–47Google Scholar
  17. Dearing JA, Hay KL, Balsan SMJ, Huddleston AS, Wellington EMH, Loveland PJ (1996a) Magnetic susceptibility of soil: an evaluation of contributing theories using a national data set. J Geophys J Intern 127:728–734Google Scholar
  18. Dearing JA, Dann RJL, Hay K, Lees JA, Loveland PJ, Maher BA, O‘Grady K (1996b) Frequency-dependent susceptibility measurements of environmental materials. Geophys J Int 124:228–240. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Facchinelli A, Sacchi E, Mallen L (2001) Multivariate statistical and GIS-based approach to identify heavy metal sources in soils. Environ Pollut 114:313–324Google Scholar
  20. Fergusson JE (1990) Heavy elements: chemistry, environmental impact and health effects. Pergamon, OxfordGoogle Scholar
  21. Fine P, Singer MJ, Verso KL (1992) Use of magnetic susceptibility measurements in assessing soil uniformity in chronosequence studies. Soil Sci Soc Am J 56:1195–1199Google Scholar
  22. Galan E, Fernandez-Caliani JC, Gonzalez I, Aparicio P, Romero A (2008) Influence of geological setting on geochemical baselines of trace elements in soils. Application to soils of South-West Spain. J Geochem Explor 98:89–106Google Scholar
  23. Gholamzadeh M, Ayoubi S, Sheikhi Shahrivar F (2019) Using magnetic susceptibility measurements to differentiate soil drainage classes in central Iran. Studia Geophysica et Geodaetica. (in press) CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Hrouda F (2011) Models of frequency-dependent susceptibility of rocks and soils revisited and broadened. Geophys J Int 187:1259–1269. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Kabata-Pendias A (2001) Trace elements in soils and plants, 3rd edn. CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL, USAGoogle Scholar
  26. Karimi R, Ayoubi S, Jalalian A, Sheikh- Hosseini AR, Afyuni M (2011) Relationships between magnetic susceptibility and heavy metals in urban topsails in the arid region of Isfahan, central Iran. J Appl Geophys 74:1–7Google Scholar
  27. Karimi A, Gh H, Haghnia S, Ayoubi T Safari (2017) Impacts of geology and land use on magnetic susceptibility and selected heavy metals in surface soils of Mashhad plain, northeastern Iran. J Appl Geophys 138:127–134Google Scholar
  28. Kodama K (2013) Application of broadband alternating current magnetic susceptibility to the characterization of magnetic nanoparticles in natural materials. J Geophys Res 118:1–12. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Le Borgne E (1955) Susceptibility magnetique anomale du sol superficial. Annales de Geophys 11:399–419Google Scholar
  30. Liu L, Zhang K, Zhang Z, Qiu Q (2015) Identifying soil redistribution patterns by magnetic susceptibility on the black soil farmland in Northeast China. CATENA 129:103–111Google Scholar
  31. Lu SG, Bai SQ, Fu LX (2008) Magnetic properties as indicators of Cu and Zn contamination in soils. Pedosphere 18:479–485Google Scholar
  32. Maher BA (1998) Magnetic properties of modern soils and Quaternary loessic paleosols: paleoclimatic implications. Palaeogeogr, Palaeoclimatol, Palaeoecol 137:25–54Google Scholar
  33. Maher BA, Thompson R (1995) Paleorainfall reconstructions from pedogenic magnetic susceptibility variations in the Chinese loess and paleosols. Quatern Res 44:383–391Google Scholar
  34. Mathe V, Leveque F (2003) High resolution magnetic survey for soil monitoring: detection of drainage and soil tillage effects. Earth Planet Sci Lett 212:241–251Google Scholar
  35. Marwick B (2005) Element concentrations and magnetic susceptibility of anthrosols: indicators of prehistoric human occupation in the inland Pilbara, Western Australia. J Archeol Sci 32:1357–1368Google Scholar
  36. Mico C, Recatala L, Peris M, Sanchez J (2006) Assessing heavy metal sources in agricultural soils of an European Mediterranean area by multivariate analysis. Chemosphere 65:863–872Google Scholar
  37. Mokhtari Karchegani P, Ayoubi S, Lu SG, Honarju N (2011) Use of magnetic measures to assess soil redistribution following deforestation in hilly region. J Appl Geophys 75:227–236Google Scholar
  38. Mooney HM, Bleifuss R (1953) Magnetic susceptibility measurements in Minnesota. Part 11: Analysis of field results. Ibid. 18:383–394Google Scholar
  39. Mullins CE (1977) Magnetic susceptibility of the soil and its significance in soil science a review. J Soil-Sci 28:223–246Google Scholar
  40. Naimi S, Ayoubi S (2013) Vertical and horizontal distribution of magnetic susceptibility and metal contents in an industrial district of central Iran. J Appl Geophys 96:55–66Google Scholar
  41. Obiora SC, Chukwu A, Davies TC (2016) Heavy metals and health risk assessment of arable soils and food crops around Pb-Zn mining localities in Enyigba, southeastern Nigeria. J Afr Earth Sci 116:182–189Google Scholar
  42. Petrovsky E, Kapicka A, Jordanova N, Knab M, Hoffmann V (2000) Low-field magnetic susceptibility: a proxy method of estimating increased pollution of different environmental systems. Environ Geol 39:312–318Google Scholar
  43. Poggio L, Vrsˇcˇaj B, Schulin R, Hepperle E, Ajmone Marsan F (2009) Metals pollution and human bioaccessibility of topsoils in Grugliasco (Italy). Environ Pollut 157:680–689Google Scholar
  44. Rahimi MRS, Ayoubi, Abdi MR (2013) Magnetic susceptibility and Cs-137 inventory as influenced by land use change and slope position in a hilly, semiarid region of west-central Iran. J Appl Geophys 89(68):75Google Scholar
  45. Rodríguez Martín J, Carbonell Martín G, López Arias M, Grau Corbí J (2009) Mercury content in topsoils, and geostatistical methods to identify anthropogenic input in the Ebro basin (Spain). Span J Agric Res 7:107–118Google Scholar
  46. Sawyerr HO, Raimi M, Adeolu AT, Odipe OE (2019) Measures of harm from heavy metal pollution in battery technician within Ilorin Metropolis, Kwara State. Nigeria. Commun Soc 2(2):1–17Google Scholar
  47. Singer MJ, Verosub KL, Fine P, Tenpas J (1996) A conceptual model for the enhancement of magnetic susceptibility in soils. Qual Int 34–36:243–248Google Scholar
  48. Staff Soil Survey (2014) Keys to Soil Taxonomy, twelfth edn. USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, USAGoogle Scholar
  49. Strzyszcz Z, Magiera T (1998) Magnetic susceptibility and heavy metals contamination in soils of Southern Poland. Phys Chem Earth 23(9–10):1127–1131Google Scholar
  50. Swan ARH, Sandilands M (1995) Introduction to geological data analysis. Blackwell Science, University of Portsmouth, OxfordGoogle Scholar
  51. Thompson R, Oldfield F (1986) Enviromental magnetism. Allen and Unwin, London, p 227pGoogle Scholar
  52. Valaee M, Ayoubi S, Khormali F, Gao Lu S, Karimzadeh HR (2016) Using magnetic susceptibility to discriminate between soil moisture regimes in selected loess and loess-like soils in northern Iran. J Appl Geophys 127:23–30Google Scholar
  53. Whitting LD, Allardice WR (1986) X-ray diffraction techniques. In: Klute A (ed) Methods of soil analysis. Part I. Physical and mineralogical methods, 2nd edn. American Society of Agronomy, MadisonGoogle Scholar
  54. Zhang C (2006) Using multivariate analyses and GIS to identify pollutants and their spatial patterns in urban soils in Galway, Ireland. Environ Pollut 142:501–511Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shamsollah Ayoubi
    • 1
    Email author
  • Vali Adman
    • 1
  • Maryam Yousefifard
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Soil Science, College of AgricultureIsfahan University of TechnologyIsfahanIran
  2. 2.Department of Agricultural Engineering and TechnologyPayame Noor UniversityTehranIran

Personalised recommendations