A Mechanistic Treatment of the Dominant Soil Nitrogen Cycling Processes: Model Development, Testing, and Application

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The development and initial application of a mechanistic model (TOUGHREACT-N) designed to characterize soil nitrogen (N) cycling and losses are described. The model couples advective and diffusive nutrient transport, multiple microbial biomass dynamics, and equilibrium and kinetic chemical reactions. TOUGHREACT-N was calibrated and tested against field measurements to assess pathways of N loss as either gas emission or solute leachate following fertilization and irrigation in a Central Valley, California, agricultural field as functions of fertilizer application rate and depth, and irrigation water volume. Our results, relative to the period before plants emerge, show that an increase in fertilizer rate produced ... continued below

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Riley, William; Maggi, F.; Gu, C.; Riley, W.J.; Hornberger, G.M.; Venterea, R.T. et al. May 1, 2008.

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The development and initial application of a mechanistic model (TOUGHREACT-N) designed to characterize soil nitrogen (N) cycling and losses are described. The model couples advective and diffusive nutrient transport, multiple microbial biomass dynamics, and equilibrium and kinetic chemical reactions. TOUGHREACT-N was calibrated and tested against field measurements to assess pathways of N loss as either gas emission or solute leachate following fertilization and irrigation in a Central Valley, California, agricultural field as functions of fertilizer application rate and depth, and irrigation water volume. Our results, relative to the period before plants emerge, show that an increase in fertilizer rate produced a nonlinear response in terms of N losses. An increase of irrigation volume produced NO{sub 2}{sup -} and NO{sub 3}{sup -} leaching, whereas an increase in fertilization depth mainly increased leaching of all N solutes. In addition, nitrifying bacteria largely increased in mass with increasing fertilizer rate. Increases in water application caused nitrifiers and denitrifiers to decrease and increase their mass, respectively, while nitrifiers and denitrifiers reversed their spatial stratification when fertilizer was applied below 15 cm depth. Coupling aqueous advection and diffusion, and gaseous diffusion with biological processes, closely captured actual conditions and, in the system explored here, significantly clarified interpretation of field measurements.

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  • Journal Name: Journal of Geophysical Research-Biogeosciences; Journal Volume: 113; Journal Issue: G02016, doi:10.1029/2007JG000578; Related Information: Journal Publication Date: 2008

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  • Report No.: LBNL-486E
  • Grant Number: DE-AC02-05CH11231
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 934775
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc897548

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) is the Department of Energy (DOE) office that collects, preserves, and disseminates DOE-sponsored research and development (R&D) results that are the outcomes of R&D projects or other funded activities at DOE labs and facilities nationwide and grantees at universities and other institutions.

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  • May 1, 2008

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  • Sept. 27, 2016, 1:39 a.m.

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  • Sept. 29, 2017, 5:55 p.m.

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Riley, William; Maggi, F.; Gu, C.; Riley, W.J.; Hornberger, G.M.; Venterea, R.T. et al. A Mechanistic Treatment of the Dominant Soil Nitrogen Cycling Processes: Model Development, Testing, and Application, article, May 1, 2008; Berkeley, California. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc897548/: accessed April 22, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.