Lecture 14 Soil Water (1) Soil Properties Basic Soil Properties Soil Water Storage Soil Water Forces (Potential)
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Lecture 14 Soil Water (1)Soil Properties Basic Soil Properties
Soil Water Storage
Soil Water Forces (Potential)
General Comments Only 0.17% of all fresh water in the world, but very important for plant growth and food production. Short residence time of about 3 months, that effectively quadruples its annual contribution to water cycle.
Hydrological Processes in Soil Capillary Rise Infiltration Percolation Runoff
Basic Soil Physical Properties Soil system: consists of three phases: solid phase comprising the mineral and organic particles of the porous medium gaseous phase of soil air in the poresliquid phase of soil water A. Wild, 1995. Soils and the Environment: An Introduction. Cambridge University Press
Soil Texture Basic Soil Physical PropertiesTexture: size distribution of the mineral particles in the soil. Three basic soil textural types are: clay (small particles), silt (medium particles), sand (large particles) (Figure 2.1 AW) A. Wild, 1995. Soils and the Environment: An Introduction. Cambridge University Press
Terms to RememberBasic Soil Physical PropertiesTexture: size distribution of the mineral particles in the soil. Three basic soil textural types are: clay (small particles), silt (medium particles) and sand (large particles) (Figure 2.1 AW)
Structure: the aggregation of these particles
Porosity: the percentage of pore space occupied by either air of water in the soil. It is determined mostly by soil texture and by structure to some extent. So it can be separated into textural porosity and structural porosity
Permeability: connectedness of pores
Specific surface: particle area per unit volume. Clays have the largest, and sands have the smallest specific area (Table 6.1 WR)
Specific Surface AreaBasic Soil Physical Properties
Soil Water StorageTerms to RememberSoil water content: percentage of volume occupied by water in the soil, usually in units of cm3/cm3
Field capacity: the capacity of soil to hold water under gravity
Wilting point: minimum water content of the soil at which plants can extract water. It depends on texture. Clays have the highest wilting point while sands have the lowest.
Available water capacity: field capacity less wilting point
Water table: depth of soil at which the soil is saturated (Figure 3.1 Jones)
Water Table in a Hydrological System
Soil Water ForcesCapillarity: surface tension at the interface between soil air and soil water
Adsorption: electrostatic forces in which the polar water molecules are attached to charged faces of the solids. They occur only very close to the surface of solids.
Osmosis: forces due to solutes in soil water. Saline water, for example, can have large osmosis that prevents plant roots from extracting the water.
Gravity: vertical forces exerted to water by gravity of the Earth.
Pressure: forces that increase below water table
Soil water potential The potential energy of soil water relative to that of water in a standard state (elevation, purity, atmospheric pressure, temperature) is the total water potential g is gravitational potentialp is pressure potentialo is osmotic potential
Water PotentialWhat is the physical meaning of water potential?It is energy per unit volume.It has the same unit as pressure (bar, mb, Pascal)
Unit of mass: kg (or g)Units of forces: kg m/s2Units of pressure, i.e., force per unit area: (kg m/s2)/m2= kg/(ms2)=Pascal
Units of energy (equivalent to force times distance): J=kg m/s2 m = kg m2/s2Units of energy per unit volume (pressure): (kg m2/s2)/m3=kg/(ms2)