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J Hazard Mater. 2013 Sep 15;260:483-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2013.06.001. Epub 2013 Jun 10.

Source apportionment of perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) in sediments: using three multivariate factor analysis receptor models.

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  • 1State Key Laboratory of Environmental Criteria and Risk Assessment, Chinese Research Academy of Environmental Sciences, Beijing 100012, China.


Understanding the levels, distribution and sources of perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) in sediments is of great significance for the management of aquatic environments. In this work, 26 sediment samples were collected from Dianchi Lake in China and ten PFCs compounds were measured. The concentrations of the total PFCs (∑PFCs) in the sediments ranged from 0.21 to 2.45 ng g(-1)dw (dry weight), with an average value of 0.95 ng g(-1)dw. PFOS was the most abundant compound among the ten PFCs with the average concentration of 0.33 ng g(-1)dw, followed by PFOA at 0.21 ng g(-1)dw. A two-dimensional HCA (hierarchical cluster analysis) heat map was depicted to analyze the spatial variation of individual PFCs compound and the possible origins in the sediments. Two groups were clustered by HCA, showing the possible source categories (PFOS-cluster and PFOA-cluster). Additionally, PCA-MLR, PMF and Unmix models were employed to quantitatively calculate the contribution of extracted sources. Three models concluded consistent results that PFOS-factor and PFOA-factor were the two main source categories for PFCs in the sediments. The contribution percentages were 43% (PCA-MLR), 48% (PMF) and 46% (Unmix) from the former source, and were 54% (PCA-MLR), 43% (PMF) and 44% (Unmix) from the latter source, respectively. The findings and the approaches used in this work can provide useful information for further study of source apportionment for PFCs in sediments and other environmental compartments.


PCA-MLR; PMF; Perfluorinated compounds; Source apportionment; Unmix

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