Research in the Department include issues related to physical chemistry of bio and geo environmental processes, mainly in the soil and root system of plants. It should be noted agricultural adsorbents, such as soil, clay minerals and organic matter (humus) are complex both in terms of chemical composition, structure (for example organo-mineral compounds and the porous structure. Contamination of soils with heavy metals is a significant risk of contamination of crops, especially in the acidic soils. From the physico-chemical side processes of sorption by root and ion transport are influenced mainly by veriable surface charge. Anatomical and biochemical changes caused by stress factors lead to changes in physical and chemical characteristics of the root.
The main research areas include:
- Physical chemistry of the surface of agricultural materials (soils, clay minerals, other inorganic adsorbents, organic matter, plant roots, peats and other organic adsorbents);
- The use of research methods and theoretical description of the phenomena and processes at the solid / gas and solid / liquid system to describe the soil and the nature, behavior and the role of soil as a living environment for plants;
- Adsorption of water vapor, nitrogen and ions;
- Properties of porous solids – surface area, the heterogeneity of solid surfaces, such as energy (distribution of energetic centers, the average energy of adsorption) and geometry (fractal dimension);
- Porosity of solids;
- hydrophilicity / hydrophobicity of the solids, the surface wettability of the solid phase of soil, and its effect on the migration of contaminants and nutrients;
- Transformation of organic matter in soils, physico-chemical and surface properties of colloidal humic acids and organo-mineral combinations;
- Chemical degradation of soil material and the impact of chemical stress on the root system and evaluation of the susceptibility of plants on chemical stress on the base of surface properties of their roots – acidification, alkalinization, heavy metals, salinity;
- Factors affecting the release of organic compounds from soil and fertilizer to the environment;
- Role of the rubble in the availability and migration of heavy metals in the soil;
- decontamination of polluted soil and improve its structure (eg, soil conditioners);
- Sorption surface and structural characteristics, of food products such as extrudates, bulk products, etc. (sorption of water vapor and nitrogen, the study of the microstructure by mercury porosimetry).