A new method of measuring the layer charge of smectites by IR spectroscopy is proposed based on the integrated intensity measurement of the band assigned to the ammonium fundamental upsilon 4 mode of NH (super +) 4 -exchanged clays. Measurements are made before and after Li fixation (Hofman & Klemen effect). These allow the quantitative determination of the total charge, equivalent to CEC, and tetrahedral and octahedral charge distribution in both dioctahedral and trioctahedral smectites.

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