ProjectStabilisotopenverhältnisse von Wasserstoff in Bodenbestandteilen: neue Einblicke in die Bildung von organischer…

Basic data

Stabilisotopenverhältnisse von Wasserstoff in Bodenbestandteilen: neue Einblicke in die Bildung von organischer Substanz und Tonmineralen
01/08/2016 to 31/07/2019
Abstract / short description:
The use of stable hydrogen isotope ratios (2H values) in soils has up to now been limited, because part of the H pool in soil exchanges with ambient moisture and does not carry a meaningful isotope signal. This part needs to be separated from the nonexchangeable part which contains source and process information. For soil organic matter (SOM), steam equilibration of demineralized SOM with waters of known H isotope composition can be used while for clay minerals degassing at ca. 200°C under vacuum is common to separate exchangeable and nonexchangeable H. Previous work has suggested that SOM may be rapidly processed through the microorganisms during which C-bound H is exchanged in the glycolytic metabolism. Clay minerals conserve the 2H value of ambient water at the time of formation in structural OH. We propose to study (i) the incorporation of ambient water H into the nonexchangeable H fraction (C-H bonds) in SOM and the associated isotopic fractionation during decomposition (ii) whether the soil clay fraction can be used to determine the origin of a soil sample and for relative dating of argillic B (Bt) horizons of recent soils and palaeosols. We will conduct laboratory and field incubations, establish steam equilibration for clay fractions, analyze clay fractions of a global set of soils and of partly dated palaeo Bt horizons.

Involved staff


Faculty of Science
University of Tübingen
Geography Research Area
Department of Geoscience, Faculty of Science

Local organizational units

Geography Research Area
Department of Geoscience
Faculty of Science


Bonn, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany

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