EGU22-3357
https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu22-3357
EGU General Assembly 2022
© Author(s) 2022. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

High concentrations of environmentally persistent free radicals in fire derived pyrogenic organic matter

Gabriel Sigmund1, Cristina Santin Nuno2, Marc Pignitter3, Nathalie Tepe1, Stefan Helmut Doerr4, and Thilo Hofmann1
Gabriel Sigmund et al.
  • 1EDGE, Centre for Microbiology and Environmental Systems Science, Vienna, Austria (gabriel.sigmund@univie.ac.at)
  • 2Research Unit of Biodiversity, Spanish National Research Council (CSIC), Mieres, Spain; Department of Biosciences, Swansea University, Swansea, U.K.
  • 3Department of Physiological Chemistry, Faculty of Chemistry, University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria
  • 4Department of Geography, Swansea University, Swansea, UK

Fire derived pyrogenic organic matter / charcoal is a source of environmentally persistent free radicals, which are precursors of potentially harmful reactive oxygen species. We analyzed charcoal samples from ten wildfires, including crown as well as surface fires in boreal, temperate, subtropical and tropical climate regions. Concentrations of environmentally persistent free radicals in these samples were orders of magnitude higher than those found in soils or other “background” matrices, as measured via electron spin resonance spectroscopy. The highest concentrations were measured in woody charcoals that were highly carbonized. We also found that environmentally persistent free radicals remained unexpectedly stable in the field for at least 5 years.

More details can be found in our recently published article: https://www.nature.com/articles/s43247-021-00138-2

How to cite: Sigmund, G., Santin Nuno, C., Pignitter, M., Tepe, N., Doerr, S. H., and Hofmann, T.: High concentrations of environmentally persistent free radicals in fire derived pyrogenic organic matter, EGU General Assembly 2022, Vienna, Austria, 23–27 May 2022, EGU22-3357, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu22-3357, 2022.