The main aims of my PhD research are to: develop methods for identifying organically-bound species in soil solution, investigate whether plant uptake is active or passive and to improve the model assessing the dynamic relationship of iodine in soils.
So far…I am becoming familiar with relevant literature and developing laboratory skills that will be required throughout the course of my PhD. I have been conducting microwave TMAH iodine extractions on vegetation samples collected from Tanzania and plan to measure total iodine concentrations in these samples using ICP-MS.
In order to accomplish the aims of this research project, a comprehensive array of laboratory experiments are required: pot trials, using a wide range of English soils, will be spiked with iodide and iodate in a variety of inputs methods, including (i) progressive addition in irrigation and (ii) initial addition. Grass will also be grown and I-129 isotopic labelling techniques used to distinguish the dynamics processes controlling iodine mobility and plant uptake.
The results of these experiments will ultimately lead to a better understanding of iodine geodynamics and will be used to develop a variety of practices to help improve iodine concentrations in food therefore reducing the number of people suffering from IDD.
More blogs when I get some data!
PhD is supervised by Dr Scott Young, Dr Liz Bailey and Professor Neil Crout (University of Nottingham) and Dr Michael Watts and Dr Louise Ander (BGS)