Clays and Clay Minerals

, Volume 23, Issue 2, pp 85–89 | Cite as

A Quantitative Method for the Determination of Montmorillonite in Soils

  • Rachel Levy
  • C. W. Francis


A quantitative method for determination of montmorillonite in the soil clay fraction, using X-ray spectrometry, is proposed. The method is based on the fact that polyvinylpyrrolidone (PVP) is adsorbed on the interlayer surfaces of montmorillonite, giving a first order c-axis spacing of 26 Å, while it is not adsorbed on other swelling clays. The experimental conditions to obtain a maximum height of the X-ray diffraction peak, and the effect of the mass adsorption coefficient of vermiculite on the intensity of montmorillonite, were investigated. Soil montmorillonite was determined by the method of known additions, measuring the intensity of the X-ray diffraction peak before and after the addition of small and known amounts of Wyoming montmorillonite.


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Copyright information

© The Clay Minerals Society 1975

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rachel Levy
    • 1
  • C. W. Francis
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Agricultural Research OrganizationThe Volcani CenterBet DaganIsrael
  2. 2.Soil Scientist, A.R.O., The Volcani Center, Bet Dagan, Israel and Environmental Sciences Div.ORNLOak RidgeUSA

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