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  • 1
    ISSN: 1365-2389
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Geosciences , Agriculture, Forestry, Horticulture, Fishery, Domestic Science, Nutrition
    Notes: The weakest link between particles or aggregates determines the strength of soil. We have re-examined the theory and, as a result, have re-defined friability, F, as the coefficient of variation of soil tensile strength. The formal relationship between the parameter 1/α of the weakest link theory of strength, which has previously been used as a measure of friability, and the newly defined measure, F, is described by a simple equation which has an accuracy of within 2% over the range of interest. The quantity F is used to show that friability reaches maximum at water contents around the lower plastic limit, that mechanical disturbance of wet soil by tillage reduces the friability, and that friability is strongly positively correlated with the organic carbon content of the soil. These results show the merit of measuring friability for determining the optimum water content for tillage, for quantifying the damage done by different tillage practices, and as a theoretically based index of soil physical quality.
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  • 2
    ISSN: 1365-2389
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Geosciences , Agriculture, Forestry, Horticulture, Fishery, Domestic Science, Nutrition
    Notes: The adsorption of oxalate and fulvate and the competition for surface-adsorption sites between SO42–-oxalate and SO42–-fulvate on goethite and on a soil material from a podzol B horizon were studied in batch titration experiments. The adsorption and competition processes were evaluated with surface complexation modelling using the diffuse-layer model (DLM). Two different adsorption reactions were tested for oxalate and fulvate adsorption and the reaction giving the largest charge neutralization at the surface gave the best description of experimental data. In the soil solution an Al-oxalate complex induced a substantial decrease in oxalate adsorption when the pH fell below 4.5. No such effect was found in the soil-fulvate system. Adsorption constants obtained from binary systems (oxide-ligand) were used to model adsorption and competition in the two ternary systems oxide-SO42–-oxalate and oxide-SO42–-fulvate. Experimental data showed that oxalate and fulvate competed with SO42– for adsorption sites. The DLM produced acceptable descriptions of experimental data, although the model slightly underpredicted SO42– adsorption in ternary systems. The competition between adsorbates was attributed mainly to charge neutralization at the surface induced by adsorption of the ligands.
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  • 3
    ISSN: 1365-2389
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Geosciences , Agriculture, Forestry, Horticulture, Fishery, Domestic Science, Nutrition
    Notes: With annual incorporation of straw, soil N mineralization is expected to increase whereby requirements for fertilizer N inputs may be reduced. Samples of whole soil, clay (〈 2 μm), silt (2–20 μm) and sand (20–2000 μm) sized organomineral separates from three soils with annual additions of straw ranging from 0 to 12 t ha–1 were leached after 0, 1, 2, 4, 8, 12 and 16 weeks of incubation at 20°C, to determine the content of NH4 + NO3. A three-pool model using first order kinetics and fixed rate constants (N1, k1 = 0.231 day–1; N2, k2 = 0.00693 day–1; N3, k3 = 0) was fitted to the mineralization data.The mineralizability of whole soil N (mg N g–1 N) differed among soil types. Straw generally increased the fast N1 and the passive N3 pool while the medium-term N2 pool was reduced in size. The N1, N2 and N3 averaged 0.8, 2.6 and 96.6% of the whole soil N, respectively.The N mineralizability increased in the order: sand 〈 silt 〈 clay. The lability of N in a given size separate was almost similar across soil types and straw managements. The active N pools (N1 + N2) averaged 7.1% of the clay N and 2.2% of the silt N. The main difference was related to the N2 pool, which accounted for 5.5% in clay and 1.2% in silt.Mineral N produced during incubation ranged from 63 to 105 kg N ha–1. Effects of straw disposal were small (〈 11 kg N ha–1). Maximum response was at 4 t straw ha–1; adding more straw diminished mineralization of N.Long-term annual incorporation of cereal straw contributes mainly soil N with a slow turnover.
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  • 4
    ISSN: 1365-2389
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Geosciences , Agriculture, Forestry, Horticulture, Fishery, Domestic Science, Nutrition
    Notes: Phosphorus (P) from soil can impair the water quality of streams and lakes. We have studied the forms and pathways of its movement from soil to water using 1-ha plot lysimeters, managed as grazed grassland for 12 months in temperate South-west England. The water flow through three pathways, namely (i) surface plus interflow to 30 cm (on undrained soil), (ii) surface plus interflow to 30 cm (on a mole and tile drained soil), and (iii) mole and tile drains (to 85 cm), were gauged. Samples of water from each path were treated with various combinations of 0.45-μm filtration and sulphuric acid-persulphate digestion and molybdate reaction, to determine the different forms of P. The total P (TP) concentration was greatest in the surface plus interflow to 30 cm paths (means 232 and 152 μg l–1), whereas the mean concentration in the drainage to 85 cm was 132 μg l–1. This reflects the substantial enrichment of the Olsen-P extracts from the surface horizons, as extracts from the 0–2 cm layer were 10-fold more than below 45 cm. In all paths, the dissolved P comprised the greatest proportion of the P transferred, with dissolved reactive P being the dominant form. Draining land reduced the transfer of TP by about 30% (≈ 1 kg–1 ha–1 year–1), because it can be sorbed as it flows through soil to drains. All these concentrations could cause eutrophication in surface waters.
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  • 5
    Electronic Resource
    Electronic Resource
    Oxford, UK : Blackwell Science Ltd
    ISSN: 1365-2389
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Geosciences , Agriculture, Forestry, Horticulture, Fishery, Domestic Science, Nutrition
    Notes: Colorimetric and ion exchange methods are commonly used to distinguish and measure Al species in natural waters. Unfortunately they also include weakly complexed Al species in their ‘reactive' or ‘labile' Al fractions and thus are of limited value for the estimation of free Al3+. Capillary electrophoresis (CE) has the potential for direct measurement of Al3+, and its performance has been verified experimentally. The method also detected the stable and positively charged AlOx+ complex formed with oxalic acid. It was compared with a colorimetric and an ion exchange method by analysing artificial solutions containing low molecular weight organic acids as well as soil extracts and seepage waters and was found to be the only method closely matching the theoretically calculated values of free Al3+. In samples from the upper soil horizons of an acid forest soil less than 14% of total Al was present as free Al3+, whereas the colorimetric method found more than 65%, and the ion exchange method more than 80% of total Al in a ‘reactive' or ‘labile' form. The latter methods thus would seriously overestimate Al toxicity, whereas using CE Al toxicity is likely to be only slightly underestimated.
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  • 6
    Electronic Resource
    Electronic Resource
    Oxford, UK : Blackwell Science Ltd
    ISSN: 1365-2389
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Geosciences , Agriculture, Forestry, Horticulture, Fishery, Domestic Science, Nutrition
    Notes: For the survey of saline and alkali soils sampling soil solution in situ is difficult. An alternative is to take soil samples, analyse their extracts and then calculate the chemical composition of the soil solution. A model (EXPRESO) has been designed to calculate both the chemical speciation of electrolyte solution and the exchange equilibrium with an adsorbed phase during simulated dilution and concentration. EXPRESO was validated using reclaimed saline soil samples. Results demonstrated that EXPRESO is a thermodynamically coherent and mass conservative model that allows the calculation of the chemical composition of both the soil solution and the exchange complex over a large range of soil water content (0.250–5 kg water kg–1 soil). EXPRESO enables the estimation of the chemical composition of the in situ soil solution, giving a comprehensive picture of the soil status under different field conditions. Modélisation de la concentration ou de la dilution des systèmes eau-sols salés Résumé
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  • 7
    ISSN: 1365-2389
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Geosciences , Agriculture, Forestry, Horticulture, Fishery, Domestic Science, Nutrition
    Notes: Surface crusting results from aggregate breakdown under raindrop impact. It reduces the infiltration rate and may induce erosion by increasing runoff. Soil crustability and erodibility generally increase as organic carbon content decreases. Samples of topsoil were collected from fields cropped continuously for maize after land clearance at various dates. Organic carbon content ranged 4–30 g kg-1. Aggregate stability was assessed by measuring fragment size distribution after different treatments. Samples were also subjected to simulated rainfall. The size of fragments forming the seal when the rain ceased and the infiltration rate during the rainfall were measured to characterize seal structure and hydraulic properties. Development of the seal and infiltration capacity were related to aggregate stability, which was itself a function of organic carbon content. The relations between aggregate breakdown, crusting and infiltration enabled us to predict soil physical behaviour from measurements of aggregate stability which are easier to make than direct measurements under rainfall. The proposed tests offer the opportunity to evaluate actual or potential soil physical degradation and erosion risks without extensive field measurements.
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  • 8
    ISSN: 1365-2389
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Geosciences , Agriculture, Forestry, Horticulture, Fishery, Domestic Science, Nutrition
    Notes: The relation between physical and mechanical responses and the structure of clay has been studied. Deformation in response to mechanical stress was measured on samples of Wyoming mont-morillonite and Saint Austell kaolinite in solutions of NaCl (0·005; 0·05; 0·5 and 5 M). Salt concentration was expressed in terms of osmotic potential of water and loading in terms of envelope pressure potential of water, and deformation was measured precisely under small mechanical stress. During shrinking and swelling, deformation was small and reversible, and consolidation was related to the largest mechanical stress applied previously in its history. The arrangement of the clay at equilibrium depends foremost on the type of clay mineral and physico-chemical properties of the liquid phase. For Na-montmorillonite suspensions, transition between gels with tactoids and rigid media with quasicrystals is abrupt and occurs at a potential of about −2000 J kg−1, whether the stress is osmotic or mechanical. Swelling indexes obtained under osmotic and mechanical stress are of the same order of magnitude. Deformation of smectite results from modifications of interassemblage and intra-assemblage organization.
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  • 9
    ISSN: 1365-2389
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Geosciences , Agriculture, Forestry, Horticulture, Fishery, Domestic Science, Nutrition
    Notes: A critical-state finite element model was used to simulate compaction under single and dual tyres and tracks. The compaction involved deformations at three different scales, from small tyres with a contact area of about 70 cm2 (single tyre) supporting a load of about 50 kg, to large tyres of about 1.2 m2 (dual tyres) supporting a load of about 4500 kg. The predictions were compared with measured values for several different quantities. These included: rut depths; vertical displacement and shear strain: vertical stresses; and, void ratios and precompression stress measured on sampled soil cores. In general, the predictions and measurements agreed reasonably well. However, the agreement between prediction and measurement depended on the precision of measurements, soil disturbance, and the volume of soil involved in a measurement relative to the volume of soil influenced by the tyre or track. This study shows that the critical-state finite element model is useful, offering insight into the compaction process, the dependence of compaction on soil strength and compressibility, and practical implications for soil management.
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  • 10
    Electronic Resource
    Electronic Resource
    Oxford, UK : Blackwell Publishing Ltd
    ISSN: 1365-2389
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Geosciences , Agriculture, Forestry, Horticulture, Fishery, Domestic Science, Nutrition
    Notes: Analytical modelling of the movement of water through porous solids consisting of more than one homogeneous layer is a problem in soil science and in construction engineering. In this paper equations based on the Green and Ampt model describe the absorption of water into a two-layer composite bar for the cases of absorption through a material of large sorptivity into one of smaller sorptivity and vice versa. These predictions are compared with experimental results. There is broad agreement between theory and experiment at all times. We conclude that the absorption of water into a two-layer composite is ultimately controlled by the second material in the absorbing sequence irrespective of whether this material has the larger or the smaller sorptivity.
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