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Amending soils with biochar can have multiple environmental benefits, including improvement in soil physicochemical properties, carbon sequestration, reduction in leaching losses of essential nutrients, and reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. This study was conducted to determine the effect of enriched biochar amendments on leaching losses of(More)
A new UV spectrophotometry based method for determining the concentration and carbon content of carbohydrate solution was developed. This method depends on the inherent UV absorption potential of hydrolysis byproducts of carbohydrates formed by reaction with concentrated sulfuric acid (furfural derivatives). The proposed method is a major improvement over(More)
Soil compaction represents one of the most ubiquitous environmental impacts of human development, decreasing bulk-scale soil porosity and hydraulic conductivity, thereby reducing soil productivity and fertility. At the aggregate-scale however, this study shows that natural root-induced compaction increases contact areas between aggregates, leading to an(More)
Wetting-drying cycles are important environmental processes known to enhance aggregation. However, very little attention has been given to drying as a process that transports mucilage to inter-particle contacts where it is deposited and serves as binding glue. The objective of this study was to formulate and test conceptual and mathematical models that(More)
The rhizosphere, the soil immediately surrounding roots, provides a critical bridge for water and nutrient uptake. The rhizosphere is influenced by various forms of root–soil interactions of which mechanical deformation due to root growth and its effects on the hydraulics of the rhizosphere are the least studied. In this work, we focus on developing new(More)
Soil structure degradation by fire is usually attributed to qualitative and quantitative change of organic and inorganic binding agents, especially in high severity burns (>300 °C) that last for prolonged periods (> 1 hour). In contrast, controlled burns are typically managed to be low in intensity and severity. Such burns are considered benign to soil(More)
Evaporation from the surface of a porous medium is a complex process, governed by interplay between (1) coupled liquid and vapor flow in the porous medium, and (2) relative humidity, temperature, and aerodynamic conditions in the surrounding air. In order to avoid the computational expense of explicitly simulating liquid, gas, and heat flow in the porous(More)
Interpreting observations of seepage into underground openings is often complicated by evaporative potentials created by the necessity to ventilate the openings. Evaporation removes liquid from the seep-age face. By doing so, it reduces both the likelihood of seepage onset and the seepage flux, and thus can enhance the perceived effectiveness of the(More)
By the end of the 20th century, the onset of spring in the Sierra Nevada mountain range of California has been occurring on average three weeks earlier than historic records. Superimposed on this trend is an increase in the presence of highly anomalous "extreme" years, where spring arrives either significantly late or early. The timing of the onset of(More)
The shrink-swell behavior of active clays in response to changes in physicochemical conditions creates great challenges for construction of geotechnical barriers for hazardous waste isolation, and is of significant importance for management of agricultural and natural resources. Initiation and evolution of desiccation cracks in active clays are strongly(More)