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Journal Articles PLoS ONE Year : 2020

No increasing risk of a limnic eruption at Lake Kivu: Intercomparison study reveals gas concentrations close to steady state

Fabian Bärenbold
  • Function : Author
Bertram Boehrer
  • Function : Author
Ange Mugisha
  • Function : Author
Wolf von Tümpling
  • Function : Author
Augusta Umutoni
  • Function : Author
Martin Schmid
  • Function : Author

Abstract

Lake Kivu, East Africa, is well known for its huge reservoir of dissolved methane (CH 4) and carbon dioxide (CO 2) in the stratified deep waters (below 250 m). The methane concentrations of up to~20 mmol/l are sufficiently high for commercial gas extraction and power production. In view of the projected extraction capacity of up to several hundred MW in the next decades, reliable and accurate gas measurement techniques are required to closely monitor the evolution of gas concentrations. For this purpose, an intercomparison campaign for dissolved gas measurements was planned and conducted in March 2018. The applied measurement techniques included on-site mass spectrometry of continuously pumped sample water, gas chromatography of in-situ filled gas bags, an in-situ membrane inlet laser spectrometer sensor and a prototype sensor for total dissolved gas pressure (TDGP). We present the results of three datasets for CH 4 , two for CO 2 and one for TDGP. The resulting methane profiles show a good agreement within a range of around 5-10% in the deep water. We also observe that TDGP measurements in the deep waters are systematically around 5 to 10% lower than TDGP computed from gas concentrations. Part of this difference may be attributed to the non-trivial conversion of concentration to partial pressure in gasrich Lake Kivu. When comparing our data to past measurements, we cannot verify the previously suggested increase in methane concentrations since 1974. We therefore conclude that the methane and carbon dioxide concentrations in Lake Kivu are currently close to a steady state.
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Dates and versions

hal-03042605 , version 1 (06-12-2020)

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Fabian Bärenbold, Bertram Boehrer, Roberto Grilli, Ange Mugisha, Wolf von Tümpling, et al.. No increasing risk of a limnic eruption at Lake Kivu: Intercomparison study reveals gas concentrations close to steady state. PLoS ONE, 2020, 15 (8), pp.e0237836. ⟨10.1371/journal.pone.0237836⟩. ⟨hal-03042605⟩
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