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This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 75 No. 2, p. 746-759
    Received: Apr 20, 2010

    * Corresponding author(s): pimstein@uc.cl
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Performance of Three Identical Spectrometers in Retrieving Soil Reflectance under Laboratory Conditions

  1. Agustin Pimstein *a,
  2. Gila Notescob and
  3. Eyal Ben-Dorb
  1. a Facultad de Agronomía e Ingeniería, Forestal of the Pontificia Universidad, Catolica de Chile
    b Dep. of Geography and Human Environment, Tel-Aviv Univ., P.O.B. 39040, Ramat Aviv 69978, Israel


A wide range of electronic and mechanical noise factors can affect soil spectra when using different instruments or even when repeating a specific sample's measurements with the same spectrometer. In soil samples where very weak spectral features are monitored for chemometric purposes, alterations in wavelength location, peak absorption shape, or albedo intensity can limit the use of previously developed spectral models. To quantify this alteration and propose a standardization method, 12 soil samples and three different materials for internal standards (sand, glass and polyethylene) were analyzed. This population was concurrently measured with three identical spectrometers using a strict measurement protocol, and then by different operators with different protocols. Significant changes in the soil spectra were found when different operators performed the measurements, being reduced >50% when the strict protocol was applied. Sand was found to be the ideal internal standard for correcting the spectra to a reference spectrometer, even when different measuring protocols were used. This standardization also showed an improvement in the prediction of soil properties when applying chemometric spectral models even with different instruments, concluding that the use of an internal standard and a strict protocol must be applied for soil spectral measurements. As the measuring factors described in this research also affect any infrared diffuse reflectance spectroscopy measurements, the proposed method should be applicable to any instrumentation and configuration being used. This is crucial to enabling spectral comparisons between different spectrometers or, more importantly, to establishing robust chemometric models and to exchange soil spectral information.

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