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This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 31 No. 6, p. 752-756
    Received: May 29, 1967
    Accepted: July 19, 1967

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The Significance of Apatite Inclusions in Soil Phosphorus Studies1

  1. J. K. Syers,
  2. J. D. H. Williams,
  3. A. S. Campbell and
  4. T. W. Walker2



Apatite inclusions have been identified in several primary minerals, and their abundance and morphology have been described. A comparison of several methods used for the determination of total P in soils showed that Na2CO3 fusion is the most reliable method for samples which contain apatite inclusions and that the effectiveness of extraction was usually in the order: Na2CO3 fusion > HF digestion > HClO4 digestion > N H2SO4 extraction following ignition. Included apatite was identified using a petrological microscope in residues after digestion with 60% HClO4. This form was also extracted much more slowly by 0.5N HCl than was nonincluded apatite. Included apatite resistant to attack by 1N HCl was determined as “residual inorganic P” in fractionation studies on weakly weathered materials, and the influence of fineness of grinding on the ratio of “acid-extractable Ca-P” to residual inorganic P indicated the likely dimensions of the inclusions in different minerals.

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