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Kinetics of zinc release from ground tire rubber and rubber ash in a calcareous soil as alternatives to Zn fertilizers

Taheri, Soraya, Khoshgoftarmanesh, Amir Hossein, Shariatmadari, Hossein, Chaney, Rufus L.
Plant and soil 2011 v.341 no.1-2 pp. 89-97
Zea mays, application rate, byproducts, calcareous soils, corn, fertilizers, lead, models, planting, roots, rubber, shoots, tires, wheat, zinc, zinc sulfate, Iran
Ground rubber contains 15-20 g Zn kg⁻¹ but very low levels of Cd and could serve as an inexpensive byproduct Zn fertilizer. The aim of this investigation was to test Zn release in a soil treated with ground tire rubber and rubber ash compared with commercial Zn fertilizer and a laboratory grade zinc sulfate. A Zn-deficient soil was chosen from wheat fields in Isfahan province, central Iran, and the ground rubber, rubber ash and fertilizer-Zn and laboratory ZnSO₄ were added at 0.5 and 2 mg Zn kg⁻¹; 0.5 kg ha⁻¹ would usually correct Zn deficiency in such pot tests. The soil DTPA-extractable Zn was then measured with time and the results were described examining first order, Elovich, power function and parabolic diffusion kinetics models. In the pot experiment, corn (Zea mays L.) plants were exposed to three rates of Zn (0, 20, 40 mg Zn kg⁻¹) from two different sources (ZnSO₄ and ground rubber). Ground rubber was applied as 2-3 mm and <1 mm diameter particles. Zinc treatments were mixed with the soils before planting. At harvest, concentrations of Zn, Pb, and Cd in roots and shoots of corn were measured. Results showed that ground rubber and rubber ash significantly increased the concentration of DTPA-Zn in the soil and this increase was higher than achieved with the commercial Zn fertilizer. At the lower Zn application rate, Zn release followed parabolic diffusion, while at the higher rate the kinetics of release followed power function and Elovich models. There was an increase in Zn concentration of corn shoot and roots by adding of Zn regardless the source of applied Zn. With increase in the rate of rubber used, the shoot Zn uptake increased. The Pb concentration of shoot and Cd concentrations of shoot and roots were low (less than 0.02 mg kg⁻¹) in all treatments. The results showed that the soil DTPA Zn decreases over time if the soil is amended with a soluble form of Zn whereas the reverse was observed if the Zn is added as ground rubber which only gradually transforms. Thus ground rubber and rubber ash offer strong value as Zn fertilizer for Zn deficient soils.