Journal of Applied and Natural Science 4(2):310-324(2012)
Nanoparticles in the soil environment and their behaviour: An overview
Rakesh Kumar, Kishan Singh Rawat and Anil Kumar Mishra
1Division of Agricultural Physics, Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi–110012, INDIA 2Water Technology Centre, Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi–110012, INDIA *Corresponding author. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Received: March 29, 2012; Revised received: June 5, 2012; Accepted: July 7, 2012
Abstract : The increasing use of nanoparticles (NPs) in industries, soil and water remediation technologies, potential agricultural uses (e.g. fertilizers) and unintentional releases via air, water and sewage sludge application to the land likely leads to the release of such materials into the environment. The unique properties of NPs, such as high specific surface area, abundant reactive sites on the surface as a consequence of a large fraction of atoms located on the exterior rather than in the interior of NPs, as well as their mobility, could cause environmental hazards or potentially harm soil health. It could be assumed that NPs may not have a direct influence on plant growth but may be responsible for the influence through indirect mechanisms. Light microscopy of root sections showed that the ZnO particles adsorbed into root tissues and cells and damaged the root tissues. Results from ecotoxicological studies show that certain NPs have effects on organisms under environmental conditions, though mostly at elevated concentrations. Nanominerals and mineral NPs in the environment have been present throughout the evolutionary development of hominids, and our exposure to these through inhalation, ingestion are important foci of nanotoxicology and environmental sciences. The more research on occurrence, characteristics of NPs and their behaviour in environment is needed towards a logical conclusion of the effects of NPs on environment.
Keywords : Nanoparticle, Nanoparticle behaviour, Occurrence, Soil environment