Testing a mechanistic model. X. The effect of pH and electrolyte concentration on borate sorption by a soil

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Abstract

Borate sorption by a soil was measured with 0.01, 0.1, or 1.0 M sodium chloride as background electrolyte and samples of soil with a range of pH values achieved by incubating with either calcium carbonate or hydrochloric acid for 24 h at 60°C. Borate sorption generally increased with increasing pH. The more concentrated the electrolyte, the steeper the increase. At low pH, increasing the salt concentration decreased borate sorption; at high pH, it increased sorption. There was an intermediate pH at which salt had no effect on borate sorption. The point of zero salt effect on borate sorption was at a higher pH than the point of zero salt effect on pH. This result was explained by a mechanism in which borate ions react with variable charge surfaces which are heterogeneous and for which part of the heterogeneity is in the electric potential of the surfaces. It cannot be explained by mechanisms which do not take into account the effects of the electric potential of the reacting surfaces on the reaction with borate ions. Although the behaviour of borate was broadly consistent with that of other anions, it differed in that about half of the heterogeneity had to be allocated to the binding constant for borate ions. It was suggested that this was because reaction with organic matter was more important for borate than for other anions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)427-435
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Soil Science
Volume40
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1989

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