ABSTRACT Phosphorous (P) is a major contributor to eutrophication of surface waters, yet a complete understanding of the P cycle remains elusive. Inositol hexa-kis phosphate (IHP) is the primary form of organic (PO) in the environment and has been implicated as an important sink in aquatic and terrestrial samples. IHP readily forms complexes in the environment due to the 12 acidic sites on the molecule. Quantification of IHP in environmental samples has typically relied on harsh extraction methods that limit understanding of IHP interactions with potential soil and aquatic complexation partners. The ability to quantify IHP in-situ at the pH of existing soils provides direct access to the role of IHP in the P cycle. Since it is itself a buffer, adjusting the pH correspondingly alters charged species of IHP present in soil. Density Functional Theory (DFT) calculations support the charged species assignments made based pKas associated with the IHP molecule. Raman spectroscopy was used to generate pH dependent spectra of inorganic (PI) and IHP as well as (PO) from IHP and (PI) in soil samples. Electro-spray ionization mass spectroscopy (ESI-MS) was used to quantify IHP-Iron complexes in two soil samples using a neutral aqueous extraction.
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