Continental shelves are submerged extensions of the continents, where flat reliefs of an essentially sedimentary nature predominate. They play an important role in the carbon cycle, stand out for the important economic activities that can be carried out in the region and act as an environmental compartment integrating nutrients and potentially polluting substances. Most of the continental shelves are characterized by the presence of mud deposits, which have individual three-dimensional geometrics and sedimentary characteristics. Mudbelt is a type of elongated and confined mud depocentre, and its formation pattern is related to sea-level history, regional climate, type and intensity of river sediment input, shelf hydrodynamics among other controlling factors. Anthropogenic substances such as, organic and inorganic pollutants can be found adsorbed onto the fine particles of the sediment of these mudbelts. Thus, these depocentres are very important archives of anthropogenic influences and environmental changes. In the southern Brazilian shelf, there are several occurrences of depocentres of mudbelt type and several studies in progress, although none with the main goal of describing the metal distribution in the region. Thus, the aim of this project is to perform a geochemical characterization of major and trace metals in the mudbelts of southern Brazil, using X-ray fluorescence (XRF) and inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectrometry (ICP-OES) and then, an environmental assessment through the use of statistical analysis.
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