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Decomposition and nitrogen transformations in digested sewage sludge applied to mine tailings

effects of temperature, soil moisture, pH and plants

Wennman, Pär (2004). Decomposition and nitrogen transformations in digested sewage sludge applied to mine tailings. Uppsala : Sveriges lantbruksuniv. , Reports from the Department of Soil Sciences, 1652-4748 ; 34
ISBN 91-576-6628-8
[Licentiate thesis]

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Applying sewage sludge to mine tailings to encourage growth of vegetation in order to prevent environmental problems such as erosion and leaching of metals began around 1970. Use of sewage sludge for mine land reclamation is today an acceptable area of application and is in many cases preferable to spreading sludge as an organic fertilizer on agricultural land, since many sludges contain metals and pathogens. The sludge has been shown to be favourable compared to other additives that do not contain organic matter with respect to improved soil properties and nutrient cycling. The present work was conducted to clarify the importance of temperature and soil moisture in an incubation experiment on the dynamics of decomposition and nitrogen (N) mineralization in digested sewage sludge mixed with pyrite mine tailings from the Aitik copper mine, Gällivare, Sweden. The data were fitted to a first order two-compartment model. The importance of pH and plants, barley (Hordeum vulgare) and red fescue (Festuca rubra)was studied in a greenhouse experiment. The experimental conditions (temperature, moisture and pH), were chosen to represent situations occurring under field conditions. Temperature and soil moisture had clear effects on microbial activity in the tailings-sludge mixture and explained 93% of the variance in respiration rate constants. The proportions of carbon and nitrogen mineralized from the substrate during approximately 100 days, measured in the incubation and the pot experiment, were between 20 and 30% and 15 and 35% respectively. The C:N ratio was roughly constant (8-10) throughout the experimental periods. From these data, good estimates of the amounts mineralized during the first season under different climatic conditions can be obtained. Interestingly, the amounts mineralized N (net) in the pots were much lower than the determined changes in organic N, suggesting that large amounts were lost as gas, most likely via denitrification.

Authors/Creators:Wennman, Pär
Title:Decomposition and nitrogen transformations in digested sewage sludge applied to mine tailings
Subtitle:effects of temperature, soil moisture, pH and plants
Series Name/Journal:Reports from the Department of Soil Sciences
Year of publishing :September 2004
Number of Pages:25
ALLI. The effect of moisture and temperature on C and N mineralization in mine tailings mixed with sewage sludge in a long-term incubation experiment. (manuscript) II. Nitrogen transformations in sewage sludge mixed into mine tailings. (manuscript)
Place of Publication:Uppsala
ISBN for printed version:91-576-6628-8
Publication Type:Licentiate thesis
Full Text Status:Public
Agris subject categories.:P Natural resources > P35 Soil fertility
P Natural resources > P34 Soil biology
Subjects:Not in use, please see Agris categories
Agrovoc terms:mineralization, reclamation, sewage sludge, nitrogen, soil temperature, ph, nutrient uptake
Keywords:reclamation, mine tailings, sewage sludge, decomposition, nitrogen, temperature, moisture, model, pH and plants
Permanent URL:
ID Code:548
Department:(NL, NJ) > Dept. of Soil Sciences (until 081001)
Deposited By: Pär Wennman
Deposited On:22 Sep 2004 00:00
Metadata Last Modified:02 Dec 2014 10:05

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