Geochemistry in Africa...by Michael Watts, Elliott Hamilton, Belinda Kaninga, Kenneth Maseka and Godfrey Sakala
We met up with Dr Godfrey Sakala (Zambian Agriculture Research Institute or ZARI) and Professor Florence Mtambanengwe (University of Zimbabwe) in Victoria Falls and viewed venues for hosting 150-200 people. The location is ideally suited, with ample accommodation, conference facilities, transport connections, activities, is safe to walk around and of course the spectacle of Victoria Falls, which is a must see and a gentle introduction to Africa for the uninitiated. A video was filmed to begin the promotion of the conference and signpost SEGH 2018 VicFalls which will appear on www.segh.net shortly.
|Krigged geospatial map for chromium to identify locations|
for experimental plots.
Both Elliott and Belinda are using the same location for experimental trials, with Elliott focussing on the control parameters for chromium (Cr) soil-to-crop transfer employing elemental speciation and isotope dilution for pot experiments using soil samples collected on this visit across the range of Cr concentrations and soil pH identified. These experiments will be undertaken at Sutton Bonington campus (University of Nottingham). The processing of samples back in ZARI also allowed us to work with lab staff, review training needs and preparations for our upcoming purchase of Microwave-Plasma Atomic Emission Spectrometers in each of Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Meanwhile, Belinda is investigating a broad panel of metals (Pb, Cu, Zn, Cd, Mn, Al, Ni) and the application of specific Conservation Agriculture methodologies and potential influence on the availability of metals for soil-to-plant uptake. Belinda has conducted pot trials at the ZARI research station in Lusaka, but as mentioned, recently set up her field plots in collaboration with the village chief and local farmers which will run over two seasons.
|Belinda Kaninga and one of her experimental plots.|