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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Auburn, Alabama » Soil Dynamics Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #384120

Research Project: Enhancing Production and Ecosystem Services of Horticultural and Agricultural Systems in the Southeastern United States

Location: Soil Dynamics Research

Title: Neutron-gamma analysis of soil elements

item Kavetskiy, Aleksandr
item Yakubova, Galina
item SARGSYAN, NIKOLAY - Auburn University
item Prior, Stephen - Steve
item Torbert, Henry - Allen

Submitted to: Encyclopedia of Soils in the Environment
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/8/2021
Publication Date: 2/17/2022
Citation: Kavetskiy, A.G., Yakubova, G.N., Sargsyan, N., Prior, S.A., Torbert III, H.A. 2022. Neutron-gamma analysis of soil elements. In Staunton S., Xing, B., editors. Encyclopedia of Soils in the Environment: Reference Module in Earth Systems and Environmental Sciences. 2nd Edition. Amsterdam, Netherlands: Elsevier.

Interpretive Summary: The book chapter summarizes the use of neutron stimulated gamma rays analysis for in situ determination of elements distributed in soil without the requirement of destructive soil sampling. This will include a list of element which can be determined, detectable levels, time needed for measurement, and creation of field maps. Application of this method for soil carbon mapping can be useful for assessing modern agricultural practices and carbon credit estimates.

Technical Abstract: The article is devoted to the application of neutron-gamma methods, mainly pulsed fast thermal neutron analysis (PFTNA), for soil elemental measurement and mapping. Herein, we provide a description of general PFTNA principles, main components and configurations of a PFTNA field system, and procedures for primary data (gamma spectra) acquisition for determining soil elemental content. In addition, methodology of field PFTNA measurements and the creation of soil elemental maps will be discussed. Soil elemental maps plotted on the basis of PFTNA measurements is useful in soil science and assessing modern agricultural practices. Results of PFTNA can provide soil carbon content in 30 cm field layer and such information can useful for carbon credit estimates.