Development of a novel myconanomining approach for 2 the recovery of agriculturally important elements from 3 jarosite waste.
In this study, an ecofriendly and economically viable waste management approach have been attempted towards the biosynthesis of agriculturally important nanoparticles from jarosite waste. Aspergillus terreus strain J4 isolated from jarosite (waste from Debari Zinc Smelter, Udaipur, India), showed good leaching efficiency along with nanoparticles (NPs) formation under ambient conditions. Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) confirmed the formation of NPs. Energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX analysis) showed strong signals for zinc, iron, calcium and magnesium, with these materials being leached out. TEM analysis and high resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM) showed semi-quasi spherical particles having average size of 10–50 nm. Thus, a novel biomethodology was developed using fungal cell-free extract for bioleaching and subsequently nanoconversion of the waste materials into nanostructured form. These biosynthesized nanoparticles were tested for their efficacy on seed emergence activity of wheat (Triticum aestivum) seeds and showed enhanced growth at concentration of 20 ppm. These nanomaterials are expected to enhance plant growth properties and being targeted as additives in soil fertility and crop productivity enhancement.