Dr. Owen Duckworth selected as an RTI University Scholar

Dr Duckworth, an associate professor of soil biogeochemistry in the Crop and Soil sciences department, will join his longtime RTI collaborator, James Harrington in analytical sciences. They will study how minerals produced by microorganisms affect the fate and transport of environmental contaminants, including arsenic and pesticides used to combat the mosquito that carries the Zika virus.

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Study Reveals Soil Influence on Well Water Manganese Levels

mkmanganese1422-992x558Utilizing a wide range of analytic tools, researchers at North Carolina State University have figured out why pockets of the southeastern Piedmont region contain high concentrations of manganese in well water, particularly in more shallow wells. The findings highlight the importance of testing well water to ensure its safety.

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Trading farmland for nitrogen protection

Excess nitrogen from agricultural runoff can enter surface waters with devastating effects. Algal blooms and fish kills are a just a couple of possible consequences. But riparian buffer zones – areas of grasses, perennials, or trees – between farmlands and streams or rivers can help.Trees and switchgrass buffer riparian plots

View of trees and switchgrass buffer plots from the field. The tubes in front are for sampling ground water depth. Photo credit Wes Childres.

“Riparian buffer zones are nature’s hydraulic shock absorbers,” says Deanna Osmond, a soil scientist at North Carolina State University. They can reduce pollution and provide habitat for wildlife. Trees can hold stream banks together and provide food for animals. These buffer zones can also dampen the flow of agricultural runoff. This can lead to lower amounts of nitrogen reaching streams and rivers.

Read Article by Adityarup “Rup” Chakravorty on Dr Osmond’s work