Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 562260
Title Deterioration of sandstones: Insights from experimental weathering in acidic, neutral and biotic solutions with Acidithiobacillus thiooxidans
Author(s) Potysz, Anna; Bartz, Wojciech; Zboińska, Katarzyna; Schmidt, Felix; Lenz, Markus
Source Construction and Building Materials 246 (2020). - ISSN 0950-0618
Department(s) Environmental Technology
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2020
Keyword(s) Bacteria - Bio-weathering - Building materials - Deterioration - Quartz arenites - Sandstone

The susceptibility of sandstones to deteriorative factors when used for construction requires detailed experimental evaluation. This study investigated the (bio)weathering behaviour of Lower-Silesian Cretaceous sandstones (quartz arenites) to quantify the deteriorative effect of bacterium Acidithiobacillus thiooxidans. For controls, ultrapure water (in undersaturated conditions) and sterile acidic medium (in abiotic acidic conditions pH 2.5) were used. Sandstone exposure to A. thiooxidans mimicked the extremely acidic conditions (pH up to 0.9) that may develop under long-term weathering, which promote microbial activity and acidic metabolite production. Element release was assessed using triple quadrupole inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (QQQ-ICP-MS) and identifying potential element donor minerals through scanning electron microscopy, coupled with energy dispersive spectrometer (SEM-EDS). The results demonstrated that sandstones were relatively susceptible to weathering, especially when exposed to aggressive acidic conditions, where the presence of bacteria apparently acts as an accelerating factor in deterioration. Based on Si release, sandstone degradation under biotic conditions was 0.27% within 86 days, whereas the dissolution achieved in ultrapure water did not exceed 0.02%. A highly pronounced weathering feature observed on sandstones was the dissolution of goethite and/or kaolinite cement, whereas quartz was less susceptible to weathering under the conditions studied. Bioweathering investigations may help solve deterioration issues in sandstone building materials.

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