Microfluidic Leaching of Soil Minerals: Release of K[superscript +] from K Feldspar
Author(s)Ciceri, Davide; Allanore, Antoine
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The rate of K[superscript +] leaching from soil minerals such as K-feldspar is believed to be too slow to provide agronomic benefit. Currently, theories and methods available to interpret kinetics of mineral processes in soil fail to consider its microfluidic nature. In this study, we measure the leaching rate of K[superscript +] ions from a K-feldspar-bearing rock (syenite) in a microfluidic environment, and demonstrate that at the spatial and temporal scales experienced by crop roots, K[superscript +] is available at a faster rate than that measured with conventional apparatuses. We present a device to investigate kinetics of mineral leaching at an unprecedented simultaneous resolution of space (~10[superscript 1]-10[superscript 2] μm), time (~10[superscript 1]-10[superscript 2] min) and fluid volume (~10[superscript 0]-10[superscript 1] mL). Results obtained from such a device challenge the notion that silicate minerals cannot be used as alternative fertilizers for tropical soils.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Materials Processing Center; Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Materials Science and Engineering
Public Library of Science
Ciceri, Davide, and Antoine Allanore. “Microfluidic Leaching of Soil Minerals: Release of K[superscript +] from K Feldspar.” Edited by Arum Han. PLoS ONE 10, no. 10 (October 20, 2015): e0139979.
Final published version