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Use of single superphosphate fertiliser produced using Eppawala rock phosphate as a source of phosphorous for rice cultivation

Authors:

CP Udawatte ,

Faculty of Applied Sciences, Sabaragauwa University of Sri Lanka, LK
About CP

Department of Physical Science & Technology

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PVA Panagoda,

Faculty of Engineering, University of Moratuwa, LK
About PVA
Department of Earth Resource Engineering
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WMADB Wickramasinghe,

Natural Resource Management Centre, Ministry of Agriculture, LK
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JDH Wijewardena,

Natural Resource Management Centre, Ministry of Agriculture, LK
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DN Sirisena,

Natural Resource Management Centre, Ministry of Agriculture, LK
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S Emitiyagoda,

Natural Resource Management Centre, Ministry of Agriculture, LK
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HRUD Bandara

Lanka Phosphate Ltd., Eppawala, LK
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Abstract

Sri Lanka is an agricultural country totally depending on imported fertilisers for paddy cultivation. Importation of triple superphosphate fertiliser is a heavy burden on the country’s national economy. Hence, optimum utilisation of the locally available Eppawala phosphate deposit (EPD) will save a significant amount of foreign exchange. The objective of this study was to assess the effectiveness of locally produced Eppawala single superphosphate as a source of phosphate fertiliser for rice in comparison to triple super phosphate. Small tonnage of Eppawala single super phosphate (ESSP) was produced for the purpose of experiments using finely ground Eppawala rock phosphate (ERP: 90% < 150 mm) mixed with 70 % sulphuric acid stoichiometrically, allowing the resulting slurry to solidify. Resulting product granulated after curing for 2-3 weeks was characterised by X-ray fluorescence (XRF), X-Ray powder diffraction (XRD) and the available phosphorus was determined. The available phosphorus was found to be in the range of 20-22 %, which is far in excess of the stipulated requirement of 17 %.  Agronomic effectiveness of ESSP over the imported TSP was tested for rice cultivation in different soil conditions in the dry, wet and intermediate zones of Sri Lanka in five consecutive seasons. The results showed that important parameters such as the grain yield and root dry weight in plots applied with ESSP as a source of phosphate were comparable with that of TSP applied plots. Application of TSP and ESSP showed similar results in dry and intermediate zones of the country.  Therefore, if ESSP is produced in sufficient quantities the importation of TSP could be reduced without much effect on agronomic effectiveness for rice cultivation.

How to Cite: Udawatte, C., Panagoda, P., Wickramasinghe, W., Wijewardena, J., Sirisena, D., Emitiyagoda, S. and Bandara, H., 2020. Use of single superphosphate fertiliser produced using Eppawala rock phosphate as a source of phosphorous for rice cultivation. Journal of the National Science Foundation of Sri Lanka, 48(2).
Published on 21 Jul 2020.
Peer Reviewed

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