Mineralization and Gaseous Loss of Nitrogen in Soil-Applied Liquid Sewage Sludge1
- Larry D. King2
Because of the current interest in land disposal of sewage sludge, experiments were conducted to determine the rate of N mineralization in sludges. Sludge applications can then be adjusted to supply adequate N for maximum crop production but prevent excessive applications which would lead to NO3-N pollution of ground water.
A 2.5-inch depth of liquid sewage sludge was either surface applied or incorporated with a quantity of soil and incubated under laboratory conditions. At the end of 18 weeks, NO3-N accumulation was 22% of the applied N when the sludge was applied to the soil surface and 38% when the sludge was incorporated with the soil. Gaseous N losses ranged from 16 to 22% of the applied N in the incorporated treatment and 21 to 36% in the surface-applied treatment. Only a small part of the gaseous N loss resulted from NH3 volatilization.Please view the pdf by using the Full Text (PDF) link under 'View' to the left.
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