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Biochar-plant interactions: a study of metal absorption and root development in contaminated soils

Grant number: 13/27010-6
Support Opportunities:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): April 03, 2014
Effective date (End): October 02, 2014
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Agronomy - Soil Science
Principal Investigator:Cleide Aparecida de Abreu
Grantee:Aline Peregrina Puga
Supervisor: Luke Beesley
Host Institution: Instituto Agronômico (IAC). Agência Paulista de Tecnologia dos Agronegócios (APTA). Secretaria de Agricultura e Abastecimento (São Paulo - Estado). Campinas , SP, Brazil
Research place: James Hutton Institute, Scotland  
Associated to the scholarship:12/01799-0 - Effects of biochar in mitigating heavy metals toxicity in multicontaminated soils, BP.DR


Biochar (BC) is one of the materials produced by burning biomass under conditions of minimum oxygen, through the process called pyrolysis. The application of BC in soils is mainly used aiming at carbon sequestration, as well as to improve soil chemical, physical and biological properties. Due to its retention properties biochar has been studied for immobilization of inorganic contaminants in soils. This project has the following aims: i) to evaluate the ability of BC and its raw feedstock at reducing the transfer of heavy metals to soil solution and plants grown in contaminated soils amended with BC; ii) to evaluate the roots of plants grown in soils with BC application and the earthworms avoidance in contaminated soils amended with BC. Three contaminated soils will be incubated in pots with different BC and their raw biomass source and wheat will be sown to such soils. Soil samples, soil solution and plants will be analyzed for heavy metals' contents. Rhizoboxes will receive two contaminated soils and will be incubated with 2 different biochars. Barley seeds will be planted and the roots will be analyzed; III) 3 different inert BC (washed with acid) will be placed in petri dishes and ryegrass seeds will be germinated. A period after germination, the petri dishes will be examined under the microscope to see rooting patterns; IV) earthworm avoidance test will be realized in contaminate soil with BC and without BC. (AU)

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