student profile: Mr Shamim Mia


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Thesis work

Thesis title: Biochar mediated N and P availability: mechanisms and controlling factors

Supervisors: Feike DIJKSTRA , Balwant SINGH

Thesis abstract:

Biochar is receiving increased attention for its multifaceted benefits including carbon sequestration in soil and crop productivity improvement. However, the long term biochar effects on nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) dynamics are yet to be explored. In the present project, biochar will be artificially aged by chemical oxidation with H2O2. Oxidized material will be characterized using chemical and spectroscopic techniques including Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS).  The fresh and aged biochar will be used to look into BNF, N recovery and N transformations in soil using 15N tracer. Phosphorus bio-availability and uptake will also be investigated. In a separate batch experiment, the effects of biochar aging on phosphate and ammonium adsorption will be studied. This project will provide important information about long-term effects of biochar on soil N and P dynamics, and ultimately will guide the decision making of applying N and P fertilizers in agricultural systems.

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