Project Title

Synthesis and Characterization of Slow-Release Urea Fertilizer

Academic department under which the project should be listed

CSM - Chemistry and Biochemistry

Faculty Sponsor Name

Mohammad A. Halim

Abstract (300 words maximum)

Fertilizers are used to assist plant growth. The more they are used the faster the plants grow, but how much of the fertilizer ends up being used? For example, urea breaks down into ammonia in a matter of minutes and this process is accelerated when it is introduced to water. Usually, plants end up using only part of urea, the majority breaks down into ammonia faster than plants can use it, and seeps into ground water, which can lead to sudden spikes in ammonia and even algae blooms. If urea is coated with polymer or other molecules, urea can end up breaking down slowly and at a rate that plants can absorb, increasing productivity of plants, and decreasing the need for so much fertilizer. In this experiment, slow releasing urea was synthesized using choline chloride and polyethylene glycol (PEG400). Infrared Spectroscopy was used to characterize these compounds. The two notable NH stretching peaks for urea were detected at 3330 and 3429 cm-1, however, such peaks were significantly shifted for Urea-ChCl and Urea-PEG400. In Urea-ChCl, NH stretching is noticeably board and detected at 3318 and 3188 cm-1. In Urea-PEG400, the NH stretching is stayed same as urea. The characteristics C=O stretching is observed at 1674 cm-1 in urea; however, this peak is shifted to 1660 cm-1 in Urea-ChCl and remained same at 1672 cm-1 for Urea-ChCl. The characteristics NCN stretching is noticed at 1460 cm-1 in urea. Bonding of urea to ChCl and PEG400 through the N−H environments is also reflected as shifts in the NCN stretching at 1434 cm-1 and 1451 cm-1, respectively. To investigate the release behavior, Urea, Urea-ChCl and Urea-PEG400 were placed in a column and then distilled water was pumped and collected for analyzing using FT-IR to monitor the characteristic urea NCN stretching peak in each sample.

Disciplines

Analytical Chemistry | Environmental Chemistry | Natural Resources and Conservation

Project Type

Poster

How will this be presented?

Yes, in person

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Synthesis and Characterization of Slow-Release Urea Fertilizer

Fertilizers are used to assist plant growth. The more they are used the faster the plants grow, but how much of the fertilizer ends up being used? For example, urea breaks down into ammonia in a matter of minutes and this process is accelerated when it is introduced to water. Usually, plants end up using only part of urea, the majority breaks down into ammonia faster than plants can use it, and seeps into ground water, which can lead to sudden spikes in ammonia and even algae blooms. If urea is coated with polymer or other molecules, urea can end up breaking down slowly and at a rate that plants can absorb, increasing productivity of plants, and decreasing the need for so much fertilizer. In this experiment, slow releasing urea was synthesized using choline chloride and polyethylene glycol (PEG400). Infrared Spectroscopy was used to characterize these compounds. The two notable NH stretching peaks for urea were detected at 3330 and 3429 cm-1, however, such peaks were significantly shifted for Urea-ChCl and Urea-PEG400. In Urea-ChCl, NH stretching is noticeably board and detected at 3318 and 3188 cm-1. In Urea-PEG400, the NH stretching is stayed same as urea. The characteristics C=O stretching is observed at 1674 cm-1 in urea; however, this peak is shifted to 1660 cm-1 in Urea-ChCl and remained same at 1672 cm-1 for Urea-ChCl. The characteristics NCN stretching is noticed at 1460 cm-1 in urea. Bonding of urea to ChCl and PEG400 through the N−H environments is also reflected as shifts in the NCN stretching at 1434 cm-1 and 1451 cm-1, respectively. To investigate the release behavior, Urea, Urea-ChCl and Urea-PEG400 were placed in a column and then distilled water was pumped and collected for analyzing using FT-IR to monitor the characteristic urea NCN stretching peak in each sample.

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