Release of 137Cs from plant mass in course of biodegradation
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This investigation was focused on the role of humic acid-like compounds during the biodegradation of plant mass contaminated with 137Cs. The experiments were set up to distinguish cases of external and internal contamination. The results showed that 137Cs was associated with humic acid-like compounds in eluates from biomass and especially with their lighter fraction. The 137Cs in detritus was markedly mobile and only minor amounts were retained in biomass. These two variants differed in the rate of 137Cs release: while in the internally contaminated biomass the rate decreased during composting, in the externally contaminated biomass the rate increased.
KeywordsRadiocesium Humic acids Biodegradation Plant biomass
C2TN/IST authors gratefully acknowledge the FCT support through the ID/Multi/04349/2013 project.
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