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Proceedings Paper

Spatial and temporal variation of 10-cm background soil moisture
Author(s): Rae Melloh; George Mason; Chris Berini; Ronald Bailey
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Paper Abstract

Soil moisture affects soil thermal and dielectric properties and may cause false alarms in detecting manmade objects when dielectric or thermal discontinuities exist in the soil. The spatial variability of soil moisture changes with time and it is important to understand this behavior because it is relevant for detection of small targets, and for modeling background moisture and temperature. Surface moisture of the top 6 cm of soil was sampled on regular grids with an impedance probe at a 0.1-m interval during wetting and drying events, both four days in duration. Maximum variances for data collected in August 2004 increased with decreasing mean moisture, as soil dried following a soaking rainfall. Maximum variances in June 2005 decreased over several days of intermittent rain as the soil rewetted following a prolonged drought. Spatially dependent ranges of approximately 0.5-m lag distance and exponential model fits were consistent among all the data sets, despite changes in moisture, moisture trend, and sample variance. The procession of spatial variation is described by variograms that transition from high to low maximum variances (sills) for wetting events, and from low to high maximum variances for drying events. A linear relationship between the maximum variance and mean of square root of ε was consistent for both years, except when the soil was incompletely wetted after a drought. The highest spatial variance in moisture that produced the most variable background for small target detection occurred as a consequence of the incomplete or uneven wetting following a drought.

Paper Details

Date Published: 18 May 2006
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 6217, Detection and Remediation Technologies for Mines and Minelike Targets XI, 62171T (18 May 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.666221
Show Author Affiliations
Rae Melloh, U.S. Army ERDC-CRREL (United States)
George Mason, U.S. Army ERDC-GSL (United States)
Chris Berini, U.S. Army ERDC-CRREL (United States)
Ronald Bailey, U.S. Army ERDC-CRREL (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6217:
Detection and Remediation Technologies for Mines and Minelike Targets XI
J. Thomas Broach; Russell S. Harmon; John H. Holloway, Editor(s)

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