Fate of polydimethylsilicone in biosolids-amended field plots

Samuel J. Traina, Nick J. Fendinger, Drew C. McAvoy, Kathleen M. Kerr, Satish Gupta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


This research examined the fate of polydimethylsilicones (PDMS) in agricultural test plots amended with municipal biosolids. This 4 yr field study involved addition of 0, 15, and 100 Mg ha-1 of municipal biosolids, which contained ambient concentrations of PDMS (1272 mg kg-1 biosolids), to corn and soybean test plots. Soil samples collected at intermittent time intervals were analyzed for soil water, soil organic C, extractable PDMS and PDMS hydrolysis products. Above normal precipitation during the field study maintained soil water levels in excess of 100 g kg-1 for most of the testing period of 1994-1998. Under these conditions half-lives for PDMS (based on field dissipation data) ranged from 876 to 1443 d. When biosolids amended soil samples were brought into the laboratory and subjected to more rapid drying, >80% of the PDMS was transformed to lower molecular weight hydrolysis products within 20 d. No difference in relative PDMS transformation rates were evident for soils that received PDMS in the form of a biosolids amendment or directly dosed to the soil (in the absence of biosolids) indicating little if any effect of direct PDMS-biosolids interactions on PDMS transformation rates. These results support that the overriding factor controlling the fate of PDMS in field soils is the soil moisture content.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)247-255
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Environmental Quality
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2002


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