Environmental Pollution, July 2018, Vol.238, pp.1027-1034
Undisturbed outdoor lysimeters containing arable loamy sand soil were used to examine the influence of either heavy rain events (high frequency of high rain intensity), steady rain (continuous rainfall of low rain intensity), and natural rainfall on the transport and retention of surfactant-stabilized silver nanoparticles (AgNP). In addition, the AgNP soil associations within the A horizon were analyzed by means of particle-size fractionation, asymmetrical flow field-flow fractionation coupled with UV/Vis-detection and inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer (AF4-UV/Vis-ICP-MS), and transmission electron microscopy coupled to an energy-dispersive X-ray (TEM-EDX) analyzer. The results showed that AgNP breakthrough for all rain events was less than 0.1% of the total AgNP mass applied, highlighting that nearly all AgNP were retained in the soil. Heavy rain treatment and natural rainfall revealed enhanced AgNP transport within the A horizon, which was attributed to the high pore water flow velocities and to the mobilization of AgNP–soil colloid associations. Particle-size fractionation of the soil revealed that AgNP were present in each size fraction and therefore indicated strong associations between AgNP and soil. In particular, water-dispersible colloids (WDC) in the size range of 0.45–0.1 μm were found to exhibit high potential for AgNP attachment. The AF4-UV/Vis-ICP-MS and TEM-EDX analyses of the WDC fraction confirmed that AgNP were persistent in soil and associated to soil colloids (mainly composed of Al, Fe, Si, and organic matter). These results confirm the particularly important role of soil colloids in the retention and remobilization of AgNP in soil. Furthermore, AF4-UV/Vis-ICP-MS results indicated the presence of single, homo-aggregated, and small AgNP probably due to dissolution.
Silver Nanoparticles ; Transport ; Retention ; Rain Events ; Soil Colloids ; Engineering ; Environmental Sciences ; Anatomy & Physiology
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