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Agronomy 2016, 6(2), 25;

Emerging and Established Technologies to Increase Nitrogen Use Efficiency of Cereals

Agroscope. Route de Duillier 50, Nyon 1260, Switzerland
Instituto de Investigaciones en Biociencias Agrícolas y Ambientales (INBA-CONICET), Facultad de Agronomía, Universidad de Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires C1417DSE, Argentina
United States Department of Agriculture, Fort Collins, CO 80526, USA
Chemical Research Center, Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Hidalgo, Hidalgo 42076, Mexico
Doctoral programme in Agricultural Chemistry, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Madrid 28049, Spain
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Francesco Montemurro and Mariangela Diacono
Received: 31 January 2016 / Revised: 12 April 2016 / Accepted: 13 April 2016 / Published: 19 April 2016
Full-Text   |   PDF [537 KB, uploaded 19 April 2016]   |  


Nitrogen (N) fertilizers are one of the most expensive inputs in agricultural settings. Additionally, the loss of N increases costs, contributes to soil acidification, and causes off-site pollution of the air, groundwater and waterways. This study reviews current knowledge about technologies for N fertilization with potential to increase N use efficiency and reduce its negative effects on the environment. Classic inorganic sources such as urea and ammonium sulfate are the major sources utilized, while controlled N release fertilizers have not been significantly adopted for cereals and oil crops. Microorganisms, with the exception of Rhizobium sp. in soybeans, are also not widely used nowadays (e.g., plant growth-promoting bacteria and cynobacteria). The interest in implementing new N fertilization knowledge is stimulating the development of sensors to diagnose the N status and decision support systems for integrating several variables to optimize sources, rates and methods of application. Among potential new technologies we identified the incipient development of nanofertilizers, nutrient formulations to coat seeds, and recycled nutrients. Furthermore, increasing concern about the environmental consequences of N may facilitate the implementation of innovations outside the farm such as more effective regulations to guide N fertilization and methods to manufacture N fertilizers that are more energy-efficient and less CO2 equivalent emitting. View Full-Text
Keywords: nitrogen use efficiency; nanofertilizers; recycled fertilizers; slow N released fertilizers nitrogen use efficiency; nanofertilizers; recycled fertilizers; slow N released fertilizers

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Herrera, J.M.; Rubio, G.; Häner, L.L.; Delgado, J.A.; Lucho-Constantino, C.A.; Islas-Valdez, S.; Pellet, D. Emerging and Established Technologies to Increase Nitrogen Use Efficiency of Cereals. Agronomy 2016, 6, 25.

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