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Soil Science Society of America Journal Abstract -

Effect of pH and Redox on Predicted Heavy Metal-Chelate Equilibria in Soils1


This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 43 No. 1, p. 39-47
    Received: Feb 21, 1978
    Accepted: Oct 11, 1978

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  1. L. E. Sommers and
  2. W. L. Lindsay2



Metal-chelate stability diagrams were developed as a function of pH and redox to predict the behavior of DTPA, EDTA, CDTA, EGTA, and HEDTA in soils. The metals evaluated include H+, Fe3+, Fe2+, Al3+, Mn2+, Ca2+, Mg2+, Zn3+, Cu2+, Cd2+, Pb2+, and Ni2+. In acid systems, Ni2+ at 10−5 to 10−7M was the predominant ligand species for all chelating agents. Similar results were obtained in alkaline systems when NiCO3 controlled Ni2+ solubility. In the absence of Ni2+, either Cd2+ or Pb2+ ligand species dominated at alkaline pH for all chelating agents. In acid systems, Cu, Pb, Fe, and Zn are the major chelated species.

In acid soils, the chelating agents EDTA, EGTA, and HEDTA deserve further study as extractants for metals and as reagents for determining metal ion activities through competitive equilibria. The results identify ligands which may be useful in determining various metal ion activities in soils. The DTPA soil test appears to have a sound theoretical basis for evaluating plant available Pb, Cd, and Ni in soils.

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