- The MOSS research group (Host group).
MOSS (material orgánica en suelos y sedimentos) research Group, at the IRNAS-CSIC is composed of Prof. Heike Knicker (project supervisor and head of the group), Prof. Dr. Francisco Gonzalez-Vila, Dr. José Antonio González Pérez (researcher), María López Martín (PhD-student), Marta Velasco (technician), Marina Paneque (PhD student), Nicasio Jiménez (PhD student), Reyes de Celis (Master Thesis Student) and the fellow Dr. José M. De la Rosa, contracted in March 2012 by IRNAS-CSIC as post-doc researcher.
MOSS group owns 3 laboratories at IRNAS-CSIC devoted to: 1) pre-treatment and conditioning of samples, 2) acid digestion and extraction with organic solvents and 3) isotopic and elemental analyses. In addition, a 400 Mhz solid state NMR spectrometer is installed at the Universidad Pablo de Olavide. Biocharisma project is actually running some experiments at the Green house and at the experimental field station, both from IRNAS-CSIC.
JMR and Prof. Heike Knicker are actively participating since 2012 in the international COST action called “Biochar as option for sustainable resource management”. This activity includes cooperation with leading groups all over Europe in the field of biochar (i.e. School of Geosciences, University of Edinburgh, UK; CESAM, Portugal; “Institut für Agrar- und Ernährungswissenschaften”, Martin-Luther Universität Halle). JMR carried out a short stay at the Reckenholz-Tanikom research Station (Switzerland) to improve the methodology of the assessment of PAHs in biochar amended soils under the supervision of Prof. Thomas Bücheli. In addition, he visited the Leibniz Institute for Agricultural Engineering in Potsdam (ATB, Germany) during September of 2014, under the supervision of Prof. Jurgen Kern. This short stay permitted him to acquire the knowledge required for the use of pyrolytic reactors which produce biochar from organic waste and organic vegetation residues. Collaborations with both institutions are still running, they will be involved in the discussion of results for future publications related with the topics of both short stays. Finally, a collaboration with Prof. Pellegrino Conte (Palermo University) is being developed. This collaboration is pursuing the use of NMR relaxometry to explain the effects of biochars concerning water retention and specific surface area in soils. The CENTA foundation and its manager, Carlos Aragón, cooperate with biocharisma since the beginning of the project with the goal of determining how sewage sludge can be applied as an alternative biomass useful to improve Mediterranean soils.
- Other remarkable collaborations with researchers and companies:
-Gonzalo Almendros, MNCN-CSIC, Madrid. Collaboration due to comparable research interests, enabling access to elemental analysis and gas-chromatography analysis
-CITIUS Institute, Seville: Access to a solid-state NMR spectrometer.
-Deborah Pinheiro Dick, Universidad Federal do Rio Grande do Sur, Porto Alegre, Brazil. Exchange of expertise in the field of soil organic nitrogen and impact of pyrogenic carbon on soil organic matter dynamics. Exchange of students. Joint studies on the N cycling in manure derived biochars.
-Bruno Glaser, Universität Halle, Germany. Close collaboration during characterization of the chars.
-Claudia Kammann, Universität Geisenheim, Germany. Exchange of students and study of greenhouse gas production.
-Hans-Peter Schmidt. Ithaka Institute, Switzerland. Chazacterization of biochar and application at field studies.
-José M. Colmenero. IRNAS-CSIC, Spain. Analysis of the effects of biochar amendment on plant physiology.
-Ana Z. Miller. IST-Lisbon, Portugal and IRNAS-CSIC, Spain. Analysis of surficial properties of biochars by SEM-EDS.
-J.M. Murillo. IRNAS-CSIC, Spain.
-eBRN European Biochar Research Network & COST Action TD1107 “Biochar as option for sustainable resource management”.
-Pyreg GmbH, Dörth, Germany.
-AMC Chemicals S.L., Seville, Spain.
-Fertiormont, TIMAC AGRO Spain.