Field-scale ammonia emissions from surface spreading of dairy slurry in Po Valley

Marco Carozzi, Rossana Monica Ferrara, Mattia Fumagalli, Mattia Sanna, Marcello Chiodini, Alessia Perego, Alessandro Chierichetti, Stefano Brenna, Gianfranco Rana, Marco Acutis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Po Valley (Northern Italy) is one of the major ammonia (NH3) emitting regions of Europe, where the slurry spreading causes high NH3 volatilisation, reducing its agronomic value and becoming a potential cause of environmental concerns. In autumn 2011 a field trial was conducted to estimate the NH3 losses from the application of dairy slurry at rate of 57 m3 ha-1 on bare soil. The emissions were estimated from surface application of dairy slurry by using an inverse dispersion modelling technique associated with long term exposure passive samplers and the measure of the atmospheric turbulence. NH3 emissions levels resulted high within the first 24 hours from the spreading, reaching the 73% of the entire losses, with a maximum value of 163 μg m-2 s-1 after 3 hours and 20 minutes, whereas the 50% of the emissions was achieved after 10 hours. The phenomenon stopped after 168 hours with a total NH3 losses equal to 44% of the total ammoniacal nitrogen (TAN) applied. Results showed and confirmed that surface application involves high NH3 emissions and then alternative low-emission techniques have to be adopted.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)25-34
Number of pages10
JournalItalian Journal of Agrometeorology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Ammonia emissions
  • Inverse dispersion modeling
  • Passive samplers
  • Surface slurry application

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Forestry
  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Atmospheric Science


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