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Selected Publication:

Zimmermann, M; Leifeld, J; Conen, F; Bird, MI; Meir, P.
(2012): Can composition and physical protection of soil organic matter explain soil respiration temperature sensitivity?
BIOGEOCHEMISTRY. 2012; 107(1-3): 423-436. FullText FullText_BOKU

The importance of soil organic matter (SOM) in the global carbon (C) cycle has been highlighted by many studies, but the way in which SOM stabilization processes and chemical composition affect decomposition rates under natural climatic conditions is not yet well understood. To relate the temperature sensitivity of heterotrophic soil respiration to the decomposition potential of SOM, we compared temperature sensitivities of respiration rates from a 2-year long soil translocation experiment from four elevations along a similar to 3000 m tropical forest gradient. We determined SOM stabilization mechanisms and the molecular structure of soil C from different horizons collected before and after the translocation. Soil samples were analysed by physical fractionation procedures, (13)C nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). The temperature sensitivity (Q (10)) of heterotrophic soil respiration at the four sites along the elevation transect did not correlate with either the available amount of SOM or its chemical structure. Only the relative distribution of C into physical soil fractions correlated with Q (10) values. We therefore conclude that physical fractionation of soil samples is the most appropriate way to assess the temperature sensitivity of SOM.
Authors BOKU Wien:
Zimmermann Michael

Find related publications in this database (Keywords)
Soil organic matter
(13)C Nuclear magnetic resonance
Differential scanning calorimetry

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