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Soil Science Society of America Journal Abstract -

Derivation of Soil Properties Using a Soil Land Inference Model (SoLIM)


This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 61 No. 2, p. 523-533
    Received: July 31, 1995

    * Corresponding author(s): azhu@geography.wisc.edu
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  1. A-Xing Zhu ,
  2. Lawrence Band,
  3. Robert Vertessy and
  4. Barry Dutton
  1. Dep. of Geography, Univ. of Wisconsin, 550 North Park Street, Madison, WI 53706-1491
    Dep. of Geography, Univ. of Toronto, 100 St. George Street, Toronto, ON, Canada M5S 1A1
    CRC for Catchment Hydrology, CSIRO Division of Water Resources, Canberra, ACT 2601, Australia
    Land & Water Consulting Inc., P.O. Box 8254, Missoula, MT 59807



SoLIM (Soil Land Inference Model) is a fuzzy inference scheme for estimating and representing the spatial distribution of soil types in a landscape. This study developed the inference method a step further to derive continuous soil property maps through two case studies. The first case illustrates the derivation of soil A horizon depth in a mountainous area in western Montana. It was found that the inferred depths are a closer fit to observed depths than those derived from the conventional soil map at both spatial and attribute levels. The second case shows the derivation of soil transmissivity values across a small catchment with a gentle environmental variation in Tumut, NSW, Australia. This case shows that the derived soil transmissivity map is comparable to the results from systematic field survey over a small area. SoLIM works well in an area where there is a good understanding of the relationships between soils and their formative environment and where the soil formative environment can be characterised using current geographical information system techniques. However, we experienced difficulty with the methodology when it was applied in an area where the environmental gradient is gentle and the soil formative environment cannot be very well described using the primitive environmental indices currently employed in SoLIM.

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