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Theses

Atomic-scale study of pesticide interaction with soil mineral matter

Abstract : Pesticides are widely employed molecules for crop protection in France and all over the world. When these substances are spread an important quantity reaches soils. In the present thesis, pesticide fate is under study. For this purpose, three pesticides have been selected: atrazine, metamitron and fenhexamid ; and the most abundant smectite clay type, montmorillonite, has been chosen. The computational simulations conducted in this thesis use the Density Functional Theory (DFT) formalism. The first part of this thesis treats a static study of atrazine interaction with pyrophyllite and montmorillonite. In the following chapters, Car-Parrinello Molecular Dynamics through DFT is used. This study begins with isolated pesticides, metamitron and fenhexamid, then their complexes with one or two Na+ and Ca2+. Finally, the adsorption of these entities, in the presence of water or not, onto a montmorillonite surface, is considered using periodic calculations. Within the second chapter of the present work, results from geometry optimisations in gas phase are presented. The third part develops the obtained results on the adsorption of metamitron and fenhexamid over the chosen clay model. In the last chapter of this thesis, some of the most stable structures of each adsorbed pesticide onto the surface have been solvated and a study of fenhexamid desorption from the montmorillonite surface using Umbrella Sampling has been done. This work allowed to quantify theoretically the free energy barrier to overcome to desorb fenhexamid from the hydrated montmorillonite.
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Bastien Belzunces. Atomic-scale study of pesticide interaction with soil mineral matter. Inorganic chemistry. Université Paul Sabatier - Toulouse III, 2017. English. ⟨NNT : 2017TOU30352⟩. ⟨tel-02004348⟩

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