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Soil Science Society of America Journal Abstract - DIVISION S-1-SOIL PHYSICS

Improved evaluation procedure for heat-pulse soil water flux density method


This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 65 No. 2, p. 320-323
    Received: Mar 20, 2000

    * Corresponding author(s): gjk@ksu.edu
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  1. G.J. Kluitenberg *a and
  2. A.W. Warrickb
  1. a Dep. of Agronomy, Kansas State Univ., Manhattan, KS 66506
    b Dep. of Soil, Water and Environ. Sci., Univ. of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85721


Analytical solutions of the heat equation must be evaluated in order to implement the heat-pulse method for measuring soil water flux density. We developed an improved procedure for evaluating the integrals in these solutions by recognizing that they can be reduced to a single function, W, known as the well function for leaky aquifers The evaluation procedure was improved further by developing an efficient method to approximate W This method, which involves summing the first few terms of an infinite series, also provides a simple means of determining the approximation error. For a wide range of input parameters, at most two terms of the series are needed to approximate W with error less than 10−4 in absolute value. Thus, numerical integration is not required in order to implement the heat-pulse method for measuring soil water flux density. Our results regarding the evaluation of W are relevant to other problems in soil science and groundwater hydrology in which the function W appears.

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Copyright © 2001. Soil Science SocietyPublished in Soil Sci. Soc. Am. J.65:320–323.