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Soil Science Society of America Journal Abstract -

Improved Method for Separating Light- and Heavy-Fraction Organic Material from Soil1


This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 51 No. 5, p. 1390-1393
    Received: Feb 17, 1987

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  1. T. C. Strickland and
  2. P. Sollins2



An improved method is presented for separating whole soil into a mineral-free organic fraction (light fraction) and an organomineral fraction (heavy fraction) by flotation in a dense inorganic salt solution. In the existing method, the heavy fraction is settled by centrifugation and the light fraction decanted. In the improved method, the light fraction is aspirated from the solution surface by suction after the soil suspension is allowed to settle. The improved method costs less, is more reproducible, and is practical in coarse-textured soils where heavy fractions do not form stable pellets during centrifugation.

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