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Assessment of Physico-Chemical and Mineralogical Properties of Alluvial Soil

S. Kumar, S. Chaudhuri, S.K. Maiti


The Raniganj Coalfield (RCF) is the oldest coalfield in India that has been continuously and extensively mined since the late eighteenth century. The present study was conducted to evaluate the physico-chemical and mineralogical properties of deeper alluvial horizon (>1m depth) of Sonepur-Bazari OCP in the eastern part of Raniganj Coalfield. To determine the physical, chemical and mineralogical properties of alluvial soils under different depth profile was studied upto 10 m depth. The study revealed that the alluvial soil is porous in nature with having pore size of average 51 % and water holding capacity of 41.6. The bulk density and particle density of alluvial soil varied from topsoil horizon to lower depth profile and found to be suitable for plants growth. The soil texture class varied from loamy to sandy loam from surface to lower depth profile. Bulk mineralogy of alluvial soils was dominated by quartz, kaolinite, illite and smectite. The content of available Nitrogen (Av. N), Organic Carbon (OC %), available Phosphorous (Av. P) and exchangeable Potassium (K) content were found to be higher in surface horizons (0-0.15m) and exhibited a strong trend of decreasing nutrient content with depth. Results of the study indicate that soils in the eastern part of Raniganj Coalfield lower depth profiles beyond the 0-0.15m depth onwards, have sufficient and adequate amounts of macro and micro nutrients content which can support growth of different plants species for biological reclamation as well as for agronomic use.


Raniganj Coalfield, alluvial soil, clay mineralogy, macronutrients, mining reclamation.

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