Articles | Volume 8, issue 1
Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 8, 2–7, 2004
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-8-2-2004

Special issue: Young Scientist Outstanding Poster Paper Award

Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 8, 2–7, 2004
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-8-2-2004

  29 Feb 2004

29 Feb 2004

Direct measurement of the soil water retention curve using X-ray absorption

A. Bayer, H.-J. Vogel, and K. Roth A. Bayer et al.
  • Institute of Environmental Physics, INF 229, University of Heidelberg, D-69120 Heidelberg, Germany
  • E-mail for corresponding author: andreas.bayer@iup.uni-heidelberg.de

Abstract. X-ray absorption measurements have been explored as a fast experimental approach to determine soil hydraulic properties and to study rapid dynamic processes. As examples, the pressure-saturation relation θ(Ψ) for a uniform sand column has been considered as has capillary rise in an initially dry sintered glass column. The θ(Ψ)-relation is in reasonable agreement with that obtained by inverting a traditional multi-step outflow experiment. Monitoring the initial phase of capillary rise reveals behaviour that deviates qualitatively from the single-phase, local-equilibrium regime described by Richards’ equation.

Keywords: X-ray absorption, soil hydraulic properties, soil water dynamics, Richards’ equation