Thursday, 13 April 2017

New research from Indonesia on low temp. biochar & N

Biochar as a Carrier for Nitrogen Plant Nutrition: The Release of Nitrogen from Biochar Enriched with Ammonium Sulfate and Nitrate Acid

E. I. Wisnubroto 1) , W.H. Utomo 2) and H.T. Soelistyari 1)
1)University Tribhuwana Tunggadewi, Malang, Indonesia.
2)International Research Centre for Management of Degraded and Mining Lands, University of Brawijaya, Malang, Indonesia.


An experiment was conducted to study the characteristics and stability of biochar enriched with ammonium sulfate and nitrate acid. Two feedstuffs of biochar (namely poultry litter and corn-cobs) were enriched with ammonium sulfate and nitrate acid. To investigate the release of nitrogen from the enriched biochar, a lysimeter study was carried out. The results showed that either ammonium sulfate or nitrate acid was good enough to be used as the materials for enriching biochar. However, ammonium sulfate yielded a relative better enriched biochar compared to the nitrate acid enriched biochar. Nitrogen in ammonium enriched biochar was relatively more stable compared to that of nitrogen in nitrate enriched biochar. Until 120 days of incubation, nitrogen content in a soil applied with ammonium enriched biochar made from corn-cobs was 0,13 %, 0.15 %, and 0.14 % for acid, neutral and calcareous soil respectively. These were higher compared to nitrogen content applied with the same biochar feedstuffs enriched with nitrate, i.e.: 0.012 %; 0.11%; and 0.11 % in acid, neutral and calcareous soil. Biochar with diameter size of less than 0.5 mm was good enough used for enrichment.

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