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Terra Latinoamericana

versão On-line ISSN 2395-8030versão impressa ISSN 0187-5779


SHUKLA, Manoj K.  e  MARGEZ, Juan Pedro Flores. Particulate matter menerated during disking and plowing in an agricultural soil of Mesilla Valley, New Mexico. Terra Latinoam [online]. 2014, vol.32, n.3, pp.241-249. ISSN 2395-8030.

Agriculture is an important source of airborne particulate matter (PM). The objectives of this study were to measure PM emissions due to some agricultural operations and relate PM emission to soil physical properties. The agriculture field for the PM emission experiment was located at Plant Sciences Research Center (PSRC) of New Mexico State University about 12 km south of Las Cruces in the Messiah Valley, Dona Ana County of NM along the Rio Grande River (32º 11' 35.84" N and 106º 44' 08.75" W). A field planted to cotton during 2007 was subdivided into six plots 5 m by 20 m, separated by a 5 m × 5 m strip. The plots were disked using a Massey Fergusson disk plow and chiseled by a Johnson plow. The tillage operations were conducted at two speeds with average tractor speeds of 4.8 and 6.5 km h-1, respectively. Three samplers were used to measure the MP dispersed in air at each treatment. All six plots displayed low variability in sand, silt and clay contents, antecedent soil moisture content as well as penetration resistance. In conclusion, under disking conditions the low resistance to penetration and low soil moisture contributed to high MP dispersion. Significant effect on MP dispersion was detected for tillage method and tractor speed and was favored by large amounts of fine soil particles (clay and silt), an intermediate compaction level, and low wind speed. Disk plowing overturns the soil from deeper depths than chisel plowing. The higher concentration of MP (1.272 ± 0.855 mg m-3) was caused by disking at 6.5 km h1 tractor speed followed by the same tillage method at 4.8 km h-1, while the chisel plowing method resulted in lower concentrations. MP dispersion in agricultural soils depends on tractor speed and soil moisture for intermediate soil textures. MP emission can be useful for soil erosion studies during dust storms, or its implications for human health during field workers' exposure to MP dispersed to air.

Palavras-chave : resistance to penetration; dust dispersed; soil preparation; tillage.

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