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Soil Science Society of America Journal Abstract -

Soil Chemical Changes and Infiltration Rate Reduction Under Sewage Spreading1


This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 30 No. 5, p. 641-646
    Received: Mar 21, 1966
    Accepted: June 9, 1966

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  1. Richard E. Thomas,
  2. Warren A. Schwartz and
  3. Thomas W. Bendixen2



Laboratory and field lysimeters were used to investigate the site and nature of soil-pore clogging under sewage spreading. The site of clogging was located by determining with a seepage meter the impedance profile at 0.5-cm depth intervals. Soil samples were analyzed for sulfide, iron, phosphate, total organic matter, polysaccharide, and polyuronide to evaluate possible causative relationships. The infiltration rate loss exhibited three phases: phase I, a slow reduction under aerobic conditions; phase II, a rapid reduction under anaerobic conditions; and phase III, a further gradual decline under anaerobic conditions. The primary site of clogging was the 0- to 1-cm depth of soil. Although sulfide was an indicator of anaerobic conditions, it was not a primary cause of clogging. Accumulations of the other five measured constituents may contribute to clogging in both phase I and phase II. Organic matter was the only probable clogging agent to decline as the infiltration rate was partially recovered in a rest cycle.

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