Pedosphere 29(3): 334--343, 2019
ISSN 1002-0160/CN 32-1315/P
©2019 Soil Science Society of China
Published by Elsevier B.V. and Science Press
Scanning Mode Application of Neutron-Gamma Analysis for Soil Carbon Mapping
Aleksandr KAVETSKIY1, Galina YAKUBOVA1, Nikolay SARGSYAN2, Clyde WIKLE2, Stephen A. PRIOR1, Henry Allen TORBERT1, Bryan A. CHIN2
1United States Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service(USDA-ARS), National Soil Dynamics Laboratory, Auburn AL 36832(USA)
2Auburn University Detection and Food Safety Center, Samuel Ginn College of Engineering, Auburn AL 36849(USA)
ABSTRACT
      Soil carbon mapping is extremely useful in assessing the effect of land management practices on soil carbon storage. Applications of neutron-gamma analysis in scanning mode for mapping of soil carbon are discussed. A Global Positioning System (GPS) device and softwares required to simultaneously acquire gamma signals and geographical positions during scanning operations were added to an existing measurement system. The reliability of soil carbon measurements in scanning mode was demonstrated to be in agreement with results acquired from static mode. The error analysis indicated that scanning measurements can be conducted with the same accuracy as static measurements in approximately one fourth the time. To obtain results suitable for mapping analogous to traditional chemical analyses (i.e., ±0.5 in weight percent or ±0.5 w%), scanning time over a given site should be ca. 15 min using the current measurement system configuration. Based on this measurement time, a reasonable towing speed of 3-5 km h-1, the necessity for complete site coverage during scanning, the number of sites (within the surveyed field), and the required total measurement time can be estimated. Soil carbon measurements for 28 field sites (total area ca. 2.5 ha) were conducted in ca. 8 h. Based on acquired data, a soil carbon distribution map was constructed utilizing various softwares. The surveyed field area included an asphalt road that had carbon readings higher than the surrounding land. The clarity with which these carbon-rich zones were delineated on the constructed map represents evidence supporting the veracity of this method. Neutron-gamma analysis technology can greatly facilitate timely construction of soil carbon maps.
Key Words:  ArcGIS,Google Earth Pro,IGOR,scanning technology,soil carbon distribution map,soil carbon storage
Citation: Kavetskiy A, Yakubova G, Sargsyan N, Wikle C, Prior S A, Torbert H A, Chin B A. 2019. Scanning mode application of neutron-gamma analysis for soil carbon mapping. Pedosphere. 29(3):334-343.
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