DESCRIPTION OF COURSES
SSAC 602 SOIL CHEMICAL ENVIRONMENT AND PLANT GROWTH (3L+2P) II
To impart the students knowledge on the latest developments on soil chemical environment, soil – solid solution equilbria, soil solution, nutrient movement to plant roots and their absorption by plants and modeling soil-plant processes
Soil chemical environment – definition and characterization; soil chemical environment - influence of metal toxicity, industrial effluents, sewage, pesticides and fertilizers; radioactive contamination of soil environment; soil factors in relation to greenhouse gases.
Methods of handling solid-solution equilibria in soils; pe+pH – concept and its use for handling the redox systems; solid-solution equilibria of nutrients and pollutant elements – identification of solid phases and influence of pH, redox potential and other soil factors on equilibria operating in the soils.
Concepts of nutrient bioavailability; soil solution – characterization and techniques of extraction, GEOCHEM and related models in chemical speciation; soil solution and plant growth.
Nutrient ion movement – mechanisms and their relative importance, factors affecting; theory of diffusion and mass flow in root zone.
Root CEC – its role in ion uptake; root ion uptake properties – root morphology, root absorbing power, root demand coefficient; ion uptake theories - mechanisms and kinetics, active and passive absorption.
Quantitative models on ion uptake – theoretical developments, boundary conditions, validation and sensitivity analysis.
Adsorption equilibria of phosphorus and sulphur in soil; cation exchange capacity of plant roots; apparent free space of plant roots; diffusion coefficients and buffer power of nutrients in soil; L and E values in soil; Michaelis-Menten parameters of ion absorption by plants; and prediction of the nutrient uptake by Barber-Cushman Model.