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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Distribution of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in soil-water system containing a nonionic surfactant.

The effect of a nonionic surfactant, Triton X-100 (TX100), on the distribution of four representative polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), phenanthrene, fluorene, acenaphthene and naphthalene, in soil-water system was studied on a natural soil. The apparent soil-water distribution coefficient with surfactant (Kd*) for these compounds increased when TX100 equilibrium concentration from zero to around the critical micelle concentration (CMC), followed by a decrease in Kd* at TX100 equilibrium concentration greater than CMC. This is a direct result of surfactant sorption onto soil followed by PAHs partitioning to the sorbed surfactant. The values of carbon-normalized solute distribution coefficient (Kss) with the sorbed TX100 are greater than the corresponding partition coefficients with soil organic matter (Koc), which indicates the soil-sorbed nonionic surfactant is more effective per unit mass as a partitioning medium than the native soil organic matter for PAHs. When Kd* = Kd the corresponding initial concentration of surfactant was defined as critical washing concentration (CWC). Depending on the surfactant initial concentration below or above the CWC, the addition of nonionic surfactant can enhance the retardation of soil for PAHs or promote the removal of PAHs from soil, respectively. The values of Kd* and CWC can be predicted by a model, which correlates them with the compounds' octanol-water partition coefficients (Kow), soil property and the amount of soil-sorbed surfactant.[1]


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