Evaluation of DualEM-II sensor for soil moisture content estimation in the potato fields of Atlantic Canada

https://doi.org/10.17221/72/2019-PSECitation:Farooque A., Zare M., Zaman Q., Abbas F., Bos M., Esau T., Acharya B., Schumann A. (2019): Evaluation of DualEM-II sensor for soil moisture content estimation in the potato fields of Atlantic Canada. Plant Soil Environ., 65: 290-297.
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The conventional gravimetric methods of estimating soil moisture content (θ) are laborious, time-consuming, and destructive to agricultural fields. We evaluated the performance of DualEM-II sensor in non-destructive way of θ prediction and for predicting θ variations within potato fields in Atlantic Canada. Values of θ were measured from four potato fields in New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island using a pre-calibrated (R2 = 0.98) time domain reflectometry (TDR) from root zone of potato tubers under grid sampling arrangements. Horizontal co-planar (HCP) and perpendicular co-planar (PRP) readings were taken using DualEM-II sensor from the same locations of θ measurements. There was a better correlation between PRP and θ (r: 0.64–0.83) was calculated than between HCP and θ  (r: 0.41–0.79). There was no significant difference (R2: 0.60–0.69; RMSE (root mean square error): 2.32–4.02) between the θ values measured with TDR (θM) and those predicted with DualEM-II (θP) confirming that the use of electromagnetic induction technique, evaluated during this study, is labor saving, quick, non-destructive, and accurate and can be considered a precision agriculture tool for efficiently managing soil water in potato fields.

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