Fluorescence indices and their interpretation

Rachel Gabor, Andy Baker, Diane M. McKnight, Matthew Miller

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


In aquatic ecosystems and soil interstitial waters, dissolved organic material (DOM) is comprised of a heterogeneous mixture of organic compounds derived from plant and soil decomposition and leachate, degradation of microbial biomass, and microbial exudates. Organic material present in the solid phase of soils and sediments (SOM) is similarly complex, with variations not only in chemical composition, but also in the extent to which organic molecules are bound to minerals. The chemical characteristics and distribution of classes of organic compounds within DOM can be dynamic. For example, DOM quality can change seasonally with hydrologic drivers, such as snowmelt, or due to summertime algal blooms in lakes and streams. In contrast, changes in SOM may occur more slowly as soils and sediments age, a process historically referred to as humification.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAquatic Organic Matter Fluorescence
EditorsPaula Coble, Jamie Lead, Andy Baker, Darren Reynolds, Robert Spencer
Place of PublicationCambridge
PublisherCambridge University Press
Number of pages35
ISBN (Print)9780521764612
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Publication series

NameCambridge Environmental Chemistry Series
PublisherCambridge University Press


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