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Soil Moisture Sensors

Soil Moisture Monitoringt

When to Irrigate?
How many hours?

Bloques de YesoThe gypsum blocks are soil moisture tension sensors. Soil moisture tension is a measure of the energy a plant must apply to the soil in order to extract available moisture. Soil moisture content provides information about how much water is in the soil. Soil is a porous medium, like a sponge, and the pores hold either air or water. As water content increases, air is displaced, and as the soil dries out due to evaporation, drainage or transpiration, air moves back into the soil. In sandy soils, the pores are large and open and water moves easily into and out of the soil. Plants draw down the water with ease but the water holding capacity of sand is limited. Water applied to dry sand to the point of saturation will drain readily under the force of gravity. Soil moisture is readily available to plants growing in sandy soil and soil moisture tension is low. By comparison, particles and pores in clay soils are very small and water is bound to the clay particles. Soil moisture content in clay can be high but plants have to work much harder to extract it. Soil moisture tension in clay soils tends to be high. The gypsum blocks are used to measure soil moisture tension and can be used in sand or clay soils and have a range from 10 to 200 kPa. It is supplied with a two metre cable.

Sensors are installed by augering a 25 mm diameter hole using an auger.

The GBug is a low cost data logger which records up to four sensors.

GBug Soil Moisture Logger

Medidor Bloques de YesoThe soil moisture loggers are a low cost, continuously recording, soil moisture monitoring system. The system is simple to use and incorporates all the functionality needed for soil moisture monitoring. The data logger is used with the Retriever to capture soil moisture data from up to four sensors, without the need for expensive cable or telemetry systems. Readings can be collected in the field in a matter of seconds. The data can be analysed on the spot and taken back to the office for interpretation on a computer.

Readings of soil moisture are taken every two hours and stored on a memory inside the data logger. Memory capacity is 20 days of data.

The readings are transferred to the Retriever by wireles connection. To download data, hold the Retriever within a metre of the Bug, tap it to wake it up and the data is automatically transferred.

Medidor Bloques de YesoThe Retriever display will show the current readings, confirming that the transfer has been successful. In the field assessments can be made without the use of a laptop computer. Scroll back through the data on the Retriever display to see changes in soil moisture tension over time.

The Retriever can download up to 100 sites.

The data stored in the memory of the Retriever is then downloaded to a Windows compatible PC using the software program provided. Soil moisture data can be viewed in graph or tabular form. Full and refill points can be set for the soil moisture values and data can be exported easily to other programs. The sensors are connected by low cost Scotchloks which are supplied with every datalogger. Power for the datalogger comes from a 9V alkaline battery.

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Soil Mosture Sensors
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