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Sensors 2017, 17(5), 1094; doi:10.3390/s17051094

Autonomous Sensors for Measuring Continuously the Moisture and Salinity of a Porous Medium

Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris, University Paris Diderot, Sorbonne Paris Cité, UMR 7154 CNRS, Case postale 7011-F75205 Paris CEDEX 13, France
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Jesús M. Corres and Francisco J. Arregui
Received: 28 February 2017 / Revised: 4 May 2017 / Accepted: 7 May 2017 / Published: 11 May 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Humidity Sensors)
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Abstract

The article describes a new field sensor to monitor continuously in situ moisture and salinity of a porous medium via measurements of its dielectric permittivity, conductivity and temperature. It intends to overcome difficulties and biases encountered with sensors based on the same sensitivity principle. Permittivity and conductivity are determined simultaneously by a self-balanced bridge, which measures directly the admittance of sensor electrodes in medium. All electric biases are reduced and their residuals taken into account by a physical model of the instrument, calibrated against reference fluids. Geometry electrode is optimized to obtain a well representative sample of the medium. The sensor also permits acquiring a large amount of data at high frequency (six points every hour, and even more) and to access it rapidly, even in real time, owing to autonomy capabilities and wireless communication. Ongoing developments intend to simplify and standardize present sensors. Results of field trials of prototypes in different environments are presented. View Full-Text
Keywords: profile of soil moisture, salinity and temperature; permittivity measurement; self-balanced bridge; electrode admittance; sample volume; autonomous sensors; wireless network; vadose zone profile of soil moisture, salinity and temperature; permittivity measurement; self-balanced bridge; electrode admittance; sample volume; autonomous sensors; wireless network; vadose zone
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Chavanne, X.; Frangi, J.-P. Autonomous Sensors for Measuring Continuously the Moisture and Salinity of a Porous Medium. Sensors 2017, 17, 1094.

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