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Soil Science Society of America Journal Abstract -

Electro-Optic Detection of Liquid in Translucent Porous Material


This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 53 No. 5, p. 1591-1595
    Received: Oct 17, 1988

    * Corresponding author(s):
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  1. J. W. Cary ,
  2. J. F. McBride and
  3. C. S. Simmons
  1. Pacific Northwest Lab., Richland, WA 99352



The amount of light transmitted through translucent porous materials can be accurately and inexpensively measured with a phototransistor or a CdS resistance cell. The results presented here suggest that light attenuation measurements in fritted glass or fibrous filters may be more easily calibrated to soil-water content than the electrical resistance blocks that are commercially available because of reduced sensitivity to salt concentration. Light attenuation measurement in porous polyethylene offers a practical and inexpensive way to detect an organic liquid in the vadose zone or on the surface of the groundwater table. Light attenuation measurements also correlate with changes in water content in plant leaves.

Contribution from the Pacific Northwest Lab., Richland, WA 99352, operated for the U.S. Dep. of Energy by Battelle Memorial Inst. This research was supported by the Ecological Res. Division, Office of Health and Environmental Res. (OHER), U.S. Dep. of Energy, under Contract DE-AC06-76RIO 1830, as part of OHER's Subsurface Science Program.

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