The molybdenum isotopic composition in river water: Constraints from small catchments

Neubert, Nadja; Heri, Alexandra; Vögelin, Andrea; Nägler, Thomas; Schlunegger, Fritz; Villa, Igor Maria (2011). The molybdenum isotopic composition in river water: Constraints from small catchments. Earth and planetary science letters, 340(1-2), pp. 180-190. Amsterdam: Elsevier 10.1016/j.epsl.2011.02.001

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We report molybdenum isotope compositions and concentrations in water samples from a variety of river catchment profiles in order to investigate the influence of anthropogenic contamination, catchment geology, within-river precipitation, and seasonal river flow variations on riverine molybdenum. Our results show that the observed variations in δ98/95Mo from 0‰ to 1.9‰ are primarily controlled by catchment lithology, particularly by weathering of sulfates and sulfides. Erosion in catchments dominated by wet-based glaciers leads to very high dissolved molybdenum concentrations. In contrast, anthropogenic inputs affect neither the concentration nor the isotopic composition of dissolved molybdenum in the rivers studied here. Seasonal variations are also quite muted. The finding that catchment geology exerts the primary control on the delivery of molybdenum to seawater indicates that the flux and isotope composition of molybdenum to seawater has likely varied in the geologic past.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geological Sciences

UniBE Contributor:

Heri, Alexandra, Vögelin, Andrea, Nägler, Frank Thomas, Schlunegger, Fritz, Villa, Igor Maria


500 Science > 550 Earth sciences & geology








Thomas Nägler-Jenni

Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2013 14:28

Last Modified:

02 Mar 2023 23:21

Publisher DOI:


Web of Science ID:


URI: (FactScience: 216445)

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