Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Smart Polymer For The Lawn

04.08.2003


Researchers of the Bochvara All-Russian Scientific Research Institute for Inorganic Materials, supported by the International Scientific and Technical Center have developed new tilth technology, which allows to get rid of radioactive or poisonous dust, to transform dust-forming slag-heaps into green lawn and even to grow forest in the desert.



The technology is based on the polyelectrolytes developed by chemists of the Lomonosov Moscow State University. The polyelectrolytes are polymers, the chains of which carry different charges. “When the polymers contact, they combine strongly with each other, explains Academician Kabanov, one of the authors of the development. This is their first advantage, and the second one is that they are capable of joining to any specks of dust, as the specks’ surface always carries electric charge. If the soil is tilled by polyelectrolytes, they will form a solid crust”. The crust will contain nubbins of soil, grains of sand, and various small and fine specks of dust get combined together by adhesive polymeric filaments resembling the spider’’s web. Such crust lets the air through excellently and it is even capable of accumulating moisture, that is why the seeds contained in the crust get into microhotbed conditions and germinate well.

The major challenge in developing the technology is that polyelectrolytes, when located in the same solution, react immediately and precipitate. That is why the soil is to be initially tilled by the solution of the first polymer and then by the solution of the second one. “This technology cannot be applied when large areas are tilled from helicopters, says Sergei Mikheikin, leader of the effort. The task was set up as follows: create one-pass tillage technology. We have succeeded in finding the way out – some salt was added to the solution”.


As a matter of fact, the ions, into which the salt molecule dissociates, combine with electric charges of polyelectrolyte chains and block them. When diluted, for instance, after the first rain, ions of salt get washed out, and the crust sets solid. Now the technology looks extremely simple: first, nitrate is dissolved in a barrel of water (nitrate will also serve as fertilizer for the plants vegetating from the crust), and then the powder of two polymers is dissolved in the barrel. After the lot of soil is watered by this solution, no dust will flow up out of it – this is important for dust-forming slag-heaps at the mining and chemical plants, and for areas of radio-active contamination. Similarly, a sand-dune will be stopped in the desert. The technology has been tried at the Chernobyl accident location, in the salt desert in place of the Aral Sea, where the researchers transplanted saxauls at the experimental allotments, and also in the areas of terrestrial nuclear weapons tests in the USA.

Contact: Victor Kabanov, kabanov@genebee.msu.ru

Sergey Komarov | Informnauka Agency

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht Back to Nature: Palm oil plantations are being turned back into protected rainforest
21.03.2019 | Forschungsverbund Berlin e.V.

nachricht The inner struggle of the evening primrose: Chloroplasts are caught up in an evolutionary arms race
14.03.2019 | Max-Planck-Institut für Molekulare Pflanzenphysiologie

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Quantum gas turns supersolid

Researchers led by Francesca Ferlaino from the University of Innsbruck and the Austrian Academy of Sciences report in Physical Review X on the observation of supersolid behavior in dipolar quantum gases of erbium and dysprosium. In the dysprosium gas these properties are unprecedentedly long-lived. This sets the stage for future investigations into the nature of this exotic phase of matter.

Supersolidity is a paradoxical state where the matter is both crystallized and superfluid. Predicted 50 years ago, such a counter-intuitive phase, featuring...

Im Focus: Explosion on Jupiter-sized star 10 times more powerful than ever seen on our sun

A stellar flare 10 times more powerful than anything seen on our sun has burst from an ultracool star almost the same size as Jupiter

  • Coolest and smallest star to produce a superflare found
  • Star is a tenth of the radius of our Sun
  • Researchers led by University of Warwick could only see...

Im Focus: Quantum simulation more stable than expected

A localization phenomenon boosts the accuracy of solving quantum many-body problems with quantum computers which are otherwise challenging for conventional computers. This brings such digital quantum simulation within reach on quantum devices available today.

Quantum computers promise to solve certain computational problems exponentially faster than any classical machine. “A particularly promising application is the...

Im Focus: Largest, fastest array of microscopic 'traffic cops' for optical communications

The technology could revolutionize how information travels through data centers and artificial intelligence networks

Engineers at the University of California, Berkeley have built a new photonic switch that can control the direction of light passing through optical fibers...

Im Focus: A long-distance relationship in femtoseconds

Physicists observe how electron-hole pairs drift apart at ultrafast speed, but still remain strongly bound.

Modern electronics relies on ultrafast charge motion on ever shorter length scales. Physicists from Regensburg and Gothenburg have now succeeded in resolving a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Revered mathematicians and computer scientists converge with 200 young researchers in Heidelberg!

17.04.2019 | Event News

First dust conference in the Central Asian part of the earth’s dust belt

15.04.2019 | Event News

Fraunhofer FHR at the IEEE Radar Conference 2019 in Boston, USA

09.04.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

Scientists propose new theory on Alzheimer's, amyloid connection

23.04.2019 | Life Sciences

Research on TGN1412 – Fc:Fcγ receptor interaction: Strong binding does not mean strong effect

23.04.2019 | Life Sciences

Bacteria use their enemy -- phage -- for 'self-recognition'

23.04.2019 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>