Biochar for water retention

WATERAGRI will assess the addition of biochar to soil for water retention. Biochar has been used in a variety of solutions from laboratory to full scale and has shown to increase both soil water holding capacity and available water capacity. It’s efficiency however differs vastly depending on its production conditions including raw material, pyrolysis conditions, activation and modifications as well as application conditions such as the soil texture and soil fertility. 

These findings will be investigated in relevant environments, by applying biochar in a field-scale bioengineered filter system for agricultural run-off. It will be assessed how the biochar supports the water holding capacity of the system as well as its influence on water evaporation by plants. The performance will be evaluated both from the technological and economical point of view in the different demonstration sites. Our WVSI-WRC model will be used to characterise the performance of the biochar’s efficiency. This will result in a quantified assessment of adsorption and soil water holding capacity. Such an assessment can guide the improvement of current product design and manufacturing processes.

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