Aquatic natural organic matter (NOM) is composed of a large variety of compounds. In this study, NOM from Uzquiza Reservoir in Burgos (Spain) was fractionated using a resin adsorption procedure, and three humic substances - natural fulvic and humic acids (NFA and NHA, respectively) extracted from the mentioned reservoir and a commercially supplied humic acid (CHA) - were characterized by molecular weight (MW) distribution, elemental composition, organic acidity and ultraviolet and infrared spectroscopy. The results indicate that Uzquiza Reservoir NOM is mainly composed of fulvic acids (45%) and low MW hydrophilic acids (27%). MWs obtained are in the following order: CHA (4500Da)>NHA (2500Da)>NFA (1000Da). Both humic acids (CHA and NHA) have the highest specific UV absorbance values (SUVA, an aromaticity indicator) whereas NFA shows a higher total and carboxylic acidity, which is in accordance with its higher solubility in water. Infrared spectra confirm these results. (copyright) 2009 The Authors. Water and Environment Journal (copyright) 2009 CIWEM.
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