What is clay mineral and soil structure?

Clay mineralogy and soil structure is a soil structure having clay minerals particles which is formed with the two fundamental unit of soil structure unit silica tetrahedral unit and octahedral unit that resulting 15 types of clay minerals formed, here we discussed about three main clay mineralogy and soil structure …

What is clay and clay minerals?

Definition: Clay minerals are the characteristic minerals of the earths near surface environments. They form in soils and sediments, and by diagenetic and hydrothermal alteration of rocks. Water is essential for clay mineral formation and most clay minerals are described as hydrous alumino silicates.

What is the soil structure of clay soil?

Structure. Because of the small particle size of clay soils, the structure of clay-heavy soil tends to be very dense. The particles typically bond together, creating a mass of clay that can be hard for plant roots to penetrate.

What is the structure of clay minerals?

The atomic structure of the clay minerals consists of two basic units, an octahedral sheet and a tetrahedral sheet. The octahedral sheet is comprised of closely packed oxygens and hydroxyls in which aluminum, iron, and magnesium atoms are arranged in octahedral coordination (Fig. 1).

What is meant by soil structure?

Soil structure is defined by the way individual particles of sand, silt, and clay are assembled. Single particles when assembled appear as larger particles. These are called aggregates . Aggregation of soil particles can occur in different patterns, resulting in different soil structures.

What are the types of soil structure and explain each of them?

The main four types of soil structure are columns, blocky, granular and plate-like. Soil structure is based on the shape that is takes from its chemical and physical properties.

What minerals are in clay soil?

Clay minerals are composed essentially of silica, alumina or magnesia or both, and water, but iron substitutes for aluminum and magnesium in varying degrees, and appreciable quantities of potassium, sodium, and calcium are frequently present as well.

What are characteristics of clay soil?

Characteristics. Clay soils feel very sticky and rolls like plasticine when wet. They can hold more total water than most other soil types and, although only about half of this is available to plants, crops seldom suffer from drought.

What are the properties of clay minerals?

The small size of the particles and their unique crystal structures give clay materials special properties. These properties include: cation exchange capabilities, plastic behaviour when wet, catalytic abilities, swelling behaviour, and low permeability.

What is the importance of the soil structure?

A good soil structure is important to allow air and water into the soil which are vital for healthy plant growth. It will improve drainage and reduce soil erosion caused by excess surface run-off. Without structure, soils will suffer from anaerobism, waterlogging and nutrient lock-up and, ultimately, plants will die!