A preliminary evaluation of volcanic rock powder for application in agriculture as soil a remineralizer

Claudete G Ramos, Xavier Querol, Marcos L S Oliveira, Karen Pires, Rubens M Kautzmann, Luis F S Oliveira


Mineralogical and geochemical characteristics of volcanic rock residue, from a crushing plant in the Nova Prata Mining District, State of Rio Grande do Sul (RS), Brazil, in this work named rock powder, were investigated in view of its potential application as soil ammendment in agriculture.  Abaut 52,400 m3 of mining waste is generated annually in the city of Nova Prata without a proper disposal. The nutrients potentially available to plants were evaluated through leaching laboratory tests.

Nutrient leaching tests were performed in Milli-Q water; citric acid solution 1% and 2% (AC); and oxalic acid solution 1% and 5% (AO). The bulk and leachable contents of 57 elements were determined by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) and inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectroscopy (ICP-AES).Mining waste were made up by CaO, K2O, SiO2,Al2O3,Fe2O3,andP2O5. The analysis by X-ray diffraction (XRD)showed the major occurence of quartz, anorthite, cristobalite, sanidine, and augite. The water leachable concentrations of all elements studied were lower than 1.0 mg/kg, indicating their low solubility. Leaching tests in acidic media yield larger leachable fractions for all elements being studied are in the leachate of the AO 1%.These date usefulness of volcanic rock powder as potential natural fertilizer in agriculture in the mining district in Nova Prata, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil to reduce the use of chemical fertilizers


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