Abstract— The uptake of silver from silver nanoparticles in soil was investigated in the presence of increasing concentrations of Vermiculite, typical 2:1 clay. Two insect species, Acheta domesticus and Tenebrio molitor, and two plant species, Helianthus annuus and Sorghum vulgare, were exposed to silver nanoparticles in the presence of increasing concentrations of Vermiculite in soil. Silver nanoparticles were characterized using techniques including transmission electron microscopy, dynamic light scattering, and powder X-ray diffraction. The levels of silver in test species exposed to silver nanoparticles were measured using an inductively coupled plasma-optical emission spectrometer. An increase in the cation exchange capacity of soil was observed with the increase in the concentration of vermiculite in soil. The results suggested a decrease in the uptake of silver from silver nanoparticles in soil by Acheta domesticus as a function of increasing concentrations of Vermiculite in soil. No apparent trend was observed in the remaining species. Both plant species were found to accumulate silver in their roots. The translocation of silver to stems and leaves was observed in the case of Helianthus annuus. Results from this study suggest that the presence of Vermiculite in soil could possibly decrease the uptake of silver from silver nanoparticles.
Keywords— Silver nanoparticles, Acheta domesticus, Tenebrio molitor, Helianthus annus, Sorghum vulgare, inductively coupled plasma-optical emission spectrometer, Cation exchange capacity.
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