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Field Calibration of TDR to Assess the Soil Moisture of Drained Peatland Surface Layers

1
Department of Environmental Improvement, Faculty of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Warsaw University of Life Sciences—SGGW, Nowoursynowska159, 02-776 Warsaw, Poland
2
Department of Agronomy, Faculty of Agriculture and Biology, Warsaw University of Life Sciences—SGGW, Nowoursynowska159, 02-776 Warsaw, Poland
3
Laboratory Water Center, Faculty of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Warsaw University of Life Sciences—SGGW, Nowoursynowska159, 02-776 Warsaw, Poland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Water 2018, 10(12), 1842; https://doi.org/10.3390/w10121842
Received: 8 October 2018 / Revised: 29 November 2018 / Accepted: 29 November 2018 / Published: 13 December 2018
(This article belongs to the Section Hydrology)
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Abstract

The proper monitoring of soil moisture content is important to understand water-related processes in peatland ecosystems. Time domain reflectometry (TDR) is a popular method used for soil moisture content measurements, the applicability of which is still challenging in field studies due to requirements regarding the calibration curve which converts the dielectric constant into the soil moisture content. The main objective of this study was to develop a general calibration equation for the TDR method based on simultaneous field measurements of the dielectric constant and gravimetric water content in the surface layers of degraded peatlands. Data were collected during field campaigns conducted temporarily between the years 2006 and 2016 at the drained peatland Kuwasy located in the north-east area of Poland. Based on the data analysis, a two-slopes linear calibration equation was developed as a general broken-line model (GBLM). A site-specific calibration model (SSM-D) for the TDR method was obtained in the form of a two-slopes equation describing the relationship between the soil moisture content and the dielectric constant and introducing the bioindices as covariates relating to plant species biodiversity and the state of the habitats. The root mean squared error for the GBLM and SSM-D models were equal, respectively, at 0.04 and 0.035 cm3 cm−3. View Full-Text
Keywords: degraded peat soils; dielectric constant; TDR calibration curve; broken-line model; bioindices of habitats degraded peat soils; dielectric constant; TDR calibration curve; broken-line model; bioindices of habitats
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Gnatowski, T.; Szatyłowicz, J.; Pawluśkiewicz, B.; Oleszczuk, R.; Janicka, M.; Papierowska, E.; Szejba, D. Field Calibration of TDR to Assess the Soil Moisture of Drained Peatland Surface Layers. Water 2018, 10, 1842.

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