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bbThermodynamic quantities and Urmia Sea water evaporation

Author(s): Heidari Nosrat | Roudgar Mina | Ebrahimpour Neda

Journal: Saline Systems
ISSN 1746-1448

Volume: 6;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 3;
Date: 2010;
Original page

Abstract The relation between climatic parameters (relative air humidity) and the water activity of the Urmia Sea water determines the possible maximum evaporation of the lake. Using the Pitzer thermodynamic approach, the activity of the Urmia Lake water during evaporation was calculated and compared to the present relative air humidity above the water. Present climatic conditions allow the Urmia Sea water to evaporate down to water with activity of 0.55, corresponding to the lowest air humidity measured over the lake. This water activity falls in the range of halite precipitation, while carnalite precipitation starts at somewhat lower (a H2O = 0.499) point. Our dynamic model predicts that for air humidity as low as 55% (reflecting present climate conditions), the Urmia Sea level may drop to as low as 1270 m (i. e., 1270 m above mean sea level). At that point, the lake water volume will have a volume of 11 km3. For the sake of comparison, at the beginning of 1990, the level of the lake was 1275 m, its volume was 25 km3, and its surface area was 5145 km2.

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