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Russian scientists create artificial soil to be used for revegetation

September 29, 15:36 UTC+3

Russian scientists have developed artificial soil, dubbed biomat, which may be used effectively in restoring degraded soil, that is in revegetation

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© Sergei Zhukov, Alexandr Chumichev/TASS

KRASNOYARSK, September 29. /TASS/. Scientists from the Siberian Federal University in Krasnoyarsk have developed artificial soil, dubbed biomat, which may be used effectively in restoring degraded soil, that is in revegetation, the University’s press service said.

“In a laboratory, the university’s scientists created a top fertile soil layer – biomat – which would make it much easier and quicker to restore land stricken by soil degradation, particularly in the northern areas, where revegetation is especially complicated, because those areas are saddled with a severe climate and located in remote areas difficult to get to,” the press service said.

Biomat is made of natural fiber that is saturated with a special solution, which keeps the material durable for a long time. Onto that base, scientists apply organic fillings, which contain biologically active and binding natural substances.

When needed, Biomat may be filled with highly-swelling hydrogel, which boosts the artificial soil’s ability to retain water, necessary for young plants.

“Biomat decomposes within four-five years, and the decayed products turn into the soil’s humus, which plants use for growing,” the press service quoted one of the authors, Alena Burnova as saying. “The artificial soil greatly resembles a carpet, it is light and it may be laid practically anywhere.” 

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