Small-sized platinum nanoparticles in soil organic matter: Influence on water holding capacity, evaporation and structural rigidity

Pellegrino Conte, Jan Žídek, Michal Berka, Marta Jemelková, Veronika Řezáčová, Renata Komendová, Jiří Kučerík

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Engineered and anthropogenic nanoparticles represent a new type of pollutants. Up until now, many studies have reported its adverse effect on biota, but the potential influence on the properties and functions of environmental compartments has largely been ignored. In this work, the effect of Pt nanoparticles on the functions and properties of model soil organic matter has been studied. Using differential scanning calorimetry and molecular modeling, the effect of a wide range of 3 nm Pt nanoparticles concentrations on water holding capacity, the strength of water binding, the stability of water molecule bridges and the content of aliphatic crystallites was studied. It was found that strong hydration of the nanoparticles influences the 3D water structural network and acts as kosmotropic agents (structure-forming) in water bridges and as chaotropic agents (i.e. water destructuring) in larger water volumes. Contrarily, the interaction with soil organic matter moieties partially eliminates these effects. As a result, the 3 nm Pt nanoparticles decreased the evaporation enthalpy of water in soil organic matter and supported soil desiccation. They also increased the strength of water molecule bridges and increased the soil structural rigidity even at low concentrations. Additionally, at high concentrations, they decreased the water content in soil organic matter and induced the aliphatic moieties' crystallization. It is concluded that the small-sized Pt nanoparticles, and perhaps other types as well, may affect the local physicochemical processes in soils and may consequently contribute to enhanced evapotranspiration and deterioration of soil functions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Publication statusPublished - 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution


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