Environmental scanning electron microscopy application for brackish water irrigation impact on soil
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We investigated soil response to irrigation with slightly brackish water (1200 mg L-1 total dissolved solids on average) in a semiarid environment at the microscopic scale using environmental scanning electron microscopy (ESEM) applied in static and dynamic modes, which allowed comparison between nonirrigated and 3-yr-irrigated soil samples to determine the impact of applied brackish water. Results indicate that (i) there was a change in soil hydrophilic behavior by the continuous accumulation of water-borne salt in the soil matrix, (ii) compared with nonirrigated samples, the wetting process occurred more gradually for the 3-yr-irrigated sample, (iii) the wetting process started at a lower vapor pressure for the 3-yr-irrigated sample, (iv) water vapor pressure in the chamber at full saturation was lower for the 3-yr-irrigated sample, and (v) the presence of heavy metals in the soil was more frequent in irrigated samples. Our results show that ESEM is a useful technique to determine the impacts on soil of irrigation with slightly brackish water.
CitationValdés-Abellán, J. [et al.]. Environmental scanning electron microscopy application for brackish water irrigation impact on soil. "Vadose zone journal", 14 Març 2019, vol. 18, núm. 1, p. 1-9.