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Ciencia del suelo

versión On-line ISSN 1850-2067


MASCH, Federico Rafael et al. On-the-go sensor with embedded load cells for measuring soil mechanical resistance. Cienc. suelo [online]. 2020, vol.38, n.1, pp.21-28. ISSN 1850-2067.

Soil compaction is an important degradation phenomenon that can affect root growth, and consequently crop yield. Therefore it becomes relevant to have soil compaction data for future improvements on precision agriculture management. A traditional on-the-field data related to soil compaction is cone index obtained using a penetrometer; however, this methodology is time consuming for a high density data. Therefore, on-the-go sensors have been developed to continually estimate the variable of interest. This work proposes an on-the-go sensor to estimate the soil horizontal resistance at different depths. The main design concept is based on embedded load cells at three different depths, resulting in a robust sensor with high sensitivity. The prototype was first tested and calibrated in laboratory, and then, it was tested in the field. The calculated horizontal resistance index (HRI) at the three depths was correlated with the cone index (CI) using a cone penetrometer, showing that this sensor can replace the penetrometer data, allowing the possibility of taking continuous data on the field.

Palabras clave : soil compaction; on-the-go sensor; soil mechanical resistance.

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