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The pH dependence of phosphate sorption and desorption in Swedish agricultural soils
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630).ORCID iD: 0000-0001-8771-7941
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630).
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630).
2012 (English)In: Geoderma, ISSN 0016-7061, E-ISSN 1872-6259, Vol. 189, 304-311 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

A number of previous studies have reported the existence of a minimum in phosphate solubility between pH 5.5 and 7 in non-calcareous soils. Different hypotheses have been forwarded to explain this phenomenon. In this study, ten soil samples with varying textures and phosphorus status were subjected to batch experiments in which dissolved phosphate was measured as a function of pH and phosphate load. Soil samples with more than 20% clay all had a minimum phosphate solubility between pH 6 and 7, whereas for samples with <10% clay, no such minimum was observed. Further experiments involving additions of phosphate and arsenate showed an increasing adsorption of these anions with decreasing pH also below pH 6 in clay soils, suggesting that the pH dependence on adsorption and desorption in short-term experiments was not the same. Kinetic experiments showed that the increased phosphate desorption at lower pH values in non-calcareous clay soils was a quick process, which is consistent with adsorption/desorption being the most important mechanism governing the retention and release of inorganic P. Moreover, by comparing extraction results with batch experiment results for samples from a long-term fertility experiment, it was concluded that more than 60% of the accumulated phosphate was occluded, i.e. not reactive within 6 days. Additional evidence for an important role of occluded phosphate comes from an analysis of the Freundlich sorption isotherms for the studied soils. It is hypothesized that interlayered hydroxy-Al and hydroxy-Fe polymers in clay minerals may be important for P dynamics in clay soils by trapping some of the P in an occluded form. The results also suggest that improved knowledge on the speciation and dynamics of phosphorus in soils is required for consistent mechanistically based modeling of phosphate sorption/desorption reactions.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2012. Vol. 189, 304-311 p.
Keyword [en]
Phosphate, Arsenate, Desorption, Fertility experiment, Clay soils, Sorption
National Category
Soil Science Other Environmental Engineering
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-116738DOI: 10.1016/j.geoderma.2012.05.014ISI: 000311875900035ScopusID: 2-s2.0-84865048416OAI: diva2:600756

QC 20130125

Available from: 2013-01-25 Created: 2013-01-25 Last updated: 2015-03-24Bibliographically approved

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Gustafsson, Jon PetterMwamila, Luhuvilo B.Kergoat, Kevin
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