In this work, a reddish biocolonization composed mainly by Trentepohlia algae affecting a synthetic building material from a modern building from the 90s located in the Bizkaia Science and Technology Park (Zamudio, North of Spain) was characterized and its ability to accumulate metals coming from the surrounding atmosphere was evaluated. To asses if these biofilms can act as bioindicators of the surrounding metal pollution, a fast non-invasive in situ methodology based on the use of hand-held energy dispersive X-ray fluorescence (HH-ED-XRF) was used. In order to corroborate the in situ obtained conclusions, some fragments from the affected material were taken to analyze the metal distribution by means of micro-energy dispersive X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy (μ-ED-XRF) and to confirm the presence of metal particles deposited on it using Scanning Electron Microscopy coupled to an Energy Dispersive Spectrometer (SEM-EDS). In order to confirm if Trentepohlia algae biofilms growing on the surface of building materials could be a fast way to in situ provide information about the surrounding metal pollution, a second Trentepohlia algae biofilm growing on a different kind of material (sandstone) was analyzed from an older historical building, La Galea Fortress (Getxo, North of Spain).
Science of the Total Environment – Elsevier
Published: Jun 1, 2018
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