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International Journal of Soil Science
  Year: 2010 | Volume: 5 | Issue: 1 | Page No.: 19-25
DOI: 10.3923/ijss.2010.19.25
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Porous Ceramic Cups: Preparation and Installation of Samplers for Measuring Nitrate Leaching

E.M. Curley, M.G. O`Flynn and K.P. McDonnell

Ceramic cup samplers are widely used in agriculture to obtain samples of soil pore water for nitrate analysis. This method has become well developed over the past 30 years; however, it is not fully clear what preparation and installation procedure gives the most reliable results or what factor could limit the validity of their use. This study describes the design and use of these samplers including modifications made during large-scale experimental work, on heavy soils in the East of Ireland. Ceramic cup samplers must be installed carefully to avoid preferential flow through the disturbed soil around them and to maximize contact between cup and soil. Furthermore, if samplers are not prepared adequately prior to installation, the cup material may release contaminants into the collected samples resulting in prejudice study results. Newly installed ceramic cups were used at University College Dublin (UCD), Ireland, in 2008 to determine the degree of nitrate leaching from various crops post-fertilization with organic manures. The ceramic cups were cleaned using a dilute acid and repeatedly rinsed with deionized water. During the installation process sodium bentonite and silica flour were used to minimize preferential flow and ensure good hydraulic contact between the sampler and the soil.
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  •    Phosphorus Loss in Subsurface Flow from Agricultural Lands after Manure Application to Miscanthus x giganteus-Impacts on Groundwater Quality
  •    The use of Porous Ceramic Cups for Sampling Soil Pore Water from the Unsaturated Zone
How to cite this article:

E.M. Curley, M.G. O`Flynn and K.P. McDonnell, 2010. Porous Ceramic Cups: Preparation and Installation of Samplers for Measuring Nitrate Leaching. International Journal of Soil Science, 5: 19-25.

DOI: 10.3923/ijss.2010.19.25






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