How to determine the CHN content of soils

A NEW application note demonstrating the precise determination of the carbon, hydrogen, and nitrogen (CHN) content of soil samples has been released by Exeter Analytical.

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This useful document includes details of the analytical methodology, used plus data demonstrating the quality of analysis possible using Exeter’s Model 440 elemental analyser.

Organic matter directly influences the productive capacity of soils, being a major contributor of carbon and hydrogen as well as nitrogen, sulphur, and phosphorous.

The determination of CHN content is of particular interest to environmental and agrochemical laboratories worldwide, whose primary interest is to determine carbon and nitrogen content.

Carbon can be determined in both its inorganic and organic forms via acid pre-treatment or temperature differential measurement using an Exeter Analytical Model 440 elemental analyser.

The company says the determination of the N content of soils using the analyser saves considerable time and cost, with no diminishment of data quality compared with the traditional Kjeldahl nitrogen determination method.

The Model 440 is a static combustion CHN elemental analyser, with a horizontal furnace which enables easy removal of sample residue between each analysis.

This means that a single combustion tube can analyse over 1000 soil samples without needing to be removed and cleaned. Other elemental analysers use a vertical furnace, which can require cleaning after as few as 20 samples.

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