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Fe(II) oxidation kinetics were studied in seawater and in seawater enriched with exudates excreted by Phaeodactylum tricornutum as an organic ligand model. The exudates produced after 2, 4, and 8 days of culture at 6.21 × 107, 2.29 × 108, and 4.98 × 108 cell L–1 were selected. The effects of pH (7.2–8.2), temperature (5–35 ºC), and salinity (10–36.72) on the Fe(II) oxidation rate were studied. All the data were compared with the results for seawater without exudates (control). The Fe(II) rate constant decreased as a function of culture time and cell concentration in the culture at different pH, temperature, and salinity. All the experimental data obtained in this study were fitted to a polynomial function in order to quantify the fractional contribution of the organic exudates from the diatoms to the Fe(II) oxidation rate in natural seawater. Experimental results showed that the organic exudates excreted by P. tricornutum affect Fe(II) oxidation, increasing the lifetime of Fe(II) in seawater. A kinetic model approach was carried out to account for the speciation of each Fe(II) type together with its contribution to the overall rate.
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