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Strontium isotopes as tracers of water-rocks interactions, mixing processes and residence time indicator of groundwater within the granite-carbonate coastal aquifer of Bonifacio (Corsica, France)

Abstract : This study aims at identifying the water-rock interactions and mixing rates within a complex granite-carbonate coastal aquifer under high touristic pressure. Investigations have been carried out within the coastal aquifer of Bonifacio (southern Corsica, France) mainly composed of continental granitic weathering products and marine calcarenite sediments filling a granitic depression. A multi-tracer approach combining physico-chemical parameters, major ions, selected trace elements, stable isotopes of the water molecule and 87Sr/86Sr ratios measurements is undertaken for 20 groundwater samples during the low water period in November 2014. 5 rock samples of the sedimentary deposits and surrounding granites are also analysed. First, the water-rock interactions processes governing the groundwater mineralization are described in order to fix the hydrogeochemical background. Secondly, the flow conditions are refined through the quantification of inter aquifer levels mixing, and thirdly, the kinetics of water-rock interaction based on groundwater residence time from a previous study using CFCs and SF6 are quantified for the two main flow lines. A regional contrast in the groundwater recharge altitude allowed the oxygene-18 to be useful combinedwith the 87Sr/86Sr ratios to differentiate the groundwater origins and to compute the mixing rates, revealing the real extension of the watershed and the availability of the resource. The results also highlight a very good correlation between the groundwater residence time and the spatial evolution of 87Sr/86Sr ratios, allowingwater-rock interaction kinetics to be defined empirically for the two main flowlines through the calcarenites. These results demonstrate the efficiency of strontiumisotopes as tracers of water-rock interaction kinetics and by extension their relevance as a proxy of groundwater residence time, fundamental parameter documenting the long term sustainability of the hydrosystem.
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https://hal-insu.archives-ouvertes.fr/insu-01355392
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Submitted on : Tuesday, August 23, 2016 - 11:07:04 AM
Last modification on : Thursday, September 17, 2020 - 8:36:05 AM

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Sébastien Santoni, Frederic Huneau, Emilie Garel, Luc Aquilina, Virginie Vergnaud-Ayraud, et al.. Strontium isotopes as tracers of water-rocks interactions, mixing processes and residence time indicator of groundwater within the granite-carbonate coastal aquifer of Bonifacio (Corsica, France). Science of the Total Environment, Elsevier, 2016, 573, pp.233-246. ⟨10.1016/j.scitotenv.2016.08.087⟩. ⟨insu-01355392⟩

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