Differences in humic acids structure of various soil types studied by DRIFT spectroscopy

https://doi.org/10.17221/76/2017-SWRCitation:Pavlů L., Mühlhanselová M. (2018): Differences in humic acids structure of various soil types studied by DRIFT spectroscopy. Soil & Water Res., 13: 29-35.
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The method of diffuse reflectance infrared spectroscopy (DRIFT) proved to be useful for studying the soil organic matter structure. The aim of this study was to compare DRIFT spectra of humic acids (HAs) separated from various soils and to identify their specific nature. Samples of agricultural soils (Dystric Cambisol, Haplic Chernozem, Greyic Phaeozem, and Haplic Luvisol) were collected from humic (A) horizons. Soil samples of reclaimed dumpsites (Haplic Technosol (molic) and (calcic)) were taken from the upper part of the soil profile. Samples of forest soils were collected from surface organic (H) horizons of Cambisols in spruce (Picea abies L. Karst.) and beech (Fagus silvatica L.) forests. The selected soil types differ in pH, carbon content, texture, and humus quality. An extraction of HAs was performed using a mixture of 0.5 M NaOH and 0.1 M Na4P2O7. The separated HAs were freeze-dried and analyzed using a DRIFT spectrometer (Thermo Nicolet Nexus) without KBr dilution. There were found differences in relative aromaticity among the agricultural soils HAs. The most aromatic character was observed in HAs from Chernozems and the least in Cambisols. Preservation of the natural structure of Chernozem HAs during the reclamation process was documented on the HAs spectra from Haplic Technosols (molic). By using the DRIFT spectra of HAs of forest H horizons, it is possible to identify the fragments of decomposed material (gymnosperms or angiosperms). HAs isolated from these horizons represent a certain interstage between lignin and the matured soil humic acids.

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