Sabtu, 21 Februari 2009



The efforts to improve soil properties by using numerous materials as soil amendment have attracted a good deal of public attention. Among such soil materials, zeolite show excellent chemical properties, especially in cation exchange capacity (CEC) and capability to capture ammonium ions. The elucidation of the properties of zeolites my lead to applying them to improve soil productivity. As deposits of relatively high purity, clinoptilolite and mordenite are two kinds of zeolites that are distributed widely in the world including in Japan and Indonesia. More than 100 sedimentary zeolite deposits have been recognized in Japan. About 10 of them are worked as zeolite mines and about 100.000 tons of crushed zeolites are produced every year. Zeolites are used as soil amendment, as a deodorizer and dehydration materials for animal wastes, as mixing materials of diet for domestic animal and for paper manufacturing. Zeolites are also used to remove ammonia from water and to enhance the nutrients in animal manure. In Indonesia, more than 47 zeolite deposits have been identified distributing mainly in Sumatera, Java, Nusa Tenggara, and Maluku. Although the application of zeolites on a large scale is just limited to removing ammonia from shrimp ponds, the application of zeolites as soil amendment has been increasing. Natural zeolite occur from the deposits in different geological environments of various ages derived from volcanic and volcanoclactic rocks, sediments, lava vesicules, deuteric altered plutonic rocks and hydrothermal system. Sometimes, zeolites contain significant quantities of volcanic glass quartz, feldspar, smectite, illite, calcite and others. In addition , these minerals vary from place in mineralogical composition and chemical properties. Investigation and utilization of natural zeolites have been developed in several countries, particularly in Japan and the United State. The results of natural zeolite application for agriculture, industry and others depends on the properties of zeolites. This paper will discuss the quality of zeolites from Japan and Indonesia, their properties as well as their effects on plant growth.

by Suwardi, Itsuo Goto, and M. Ninaki (1994)


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