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This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 27 No. 3, p. 679-687
    Received: Aug 28, 1996

    * Corresponding author(s): oswald.vancleemput@rug.ac.be
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Interaction between Nitrous Oxide Formation and Methane Oxidation in Soils: Influence of Cation Exchange Phenomena

  1. Alex De Visscher,
  2. Pascal Boeckx and
  3. Oswald Van Cleemput *
  1. Laboratory of Applied Physical Chemistry, Faculty of Agricultural and Applied Biological Sciences; Univ. of Ghent, Coupure Links 653, B-9000 Gent, Belgium.



Ammonium (NH+) inhibits the microbial oxidation of methane (CH4), and gives rise to the formation of nitrous oxide (N2O) in aerobic soils. However, the NH+4 concentration in the soil water is not necessarily proportional to the total NH+4 concentration in the soil, due to cation exchange or fixation phenomena. It was found that introducing the concept of ion exchange or fixation in kinetic models on CH4 consumption and N2O formation can increase our knowledge on these processes in soils. A fit of these kinetic models with experimental data showed a standard deviation of slightly more than 10%. The effects of NH+4 on CH4 oxidation and N2O formation can only be compared in soils with the same cation exchange capacity (CEC).

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