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New Book on Soil Analysis Methods Destined to Become a Classic

"Never before have we had such a technologically advanced set of tools for addressing the needs of humanity and the earth. This work will undoubtedly join the ranks of the internationally successful soil methods monographs and become a standard item on the bookshelves of soil and earth scientists" - John W. Doran, past president, Soil Science Society of America, in the Foreword of Methods of Soil Analysis, Part 4, Physical Methods
Collecting Soil-Pit Samples for a Collaborative Study with the U.s. Army Near Yuma, Arizona
U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists collecting soil-pit samples for a collaborative study with the U.S. Army near Yuma, Arizona. Samples were used to determine physical properties and moisture conditions of the soil.

U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists contributed to an innovative new book on methods to study soils, “Methods of Soil Analysis, Part 4, Physical Methods”. This book, published in 2002 by the Soil Science Society of America (SSSA), will serve as a valuable resource for the ever-growing group of scientists, engineers, and resource managers concerned with the movement of water and transport of chemicals in soils and sediments. The book gives exhaustive information on the latest methods for determining the parameters that control the fate and transport of fluids and chemicals in soils. USGS scientists contributed eleven sections to the book.

USGS Contributions to the Book

  • Particle density, Flint, A.L., and Flint, L.E., p. 229-240.
  • Porosity, Flint, L.E., and Flint, A.L., p. 241-254.
  • Aggregate stability and size distribution, Nimmo, J.R.*, and Perkins, K.J.*, p. 317-328.
  • Thermocouple psychrometry, Andraski, B.J.*, and Scanlon, B.R.*, p. 609-642.
  • Miscellaneous methods for measuring matric or water potential, Scanlon, B.R.*, Andraski, B.J.*, and Bilskie, Jim, p. 643-670.
  • Controlled liquid-volume [water retention and storage], Winfield, K.A.*, and Nimmo, J.R.*, p. 698-703, 717-720.
  • Miscellaneous methods [water retention and storage], Nimmo, J.R.*, and Winfield, K.A.*, p. 710-714, 717-720.
  • Guidelines for method selection [water retention and storage], Nimmo, J.R.*, p. 716-720.
  • Property-transfer models, Haverkamp, Randel, Nimmo, J.R.*, and Reggiani, Paolo, p. 759-761.
  • Property transfer from particle and aggregate size to water retention [property-transfer models], Nimmo, J.R.*, p. 777-782.
  • Steady-state centrifuge [simultaneous determination of water transmission and retention properties--direct methods--laboratory], Nimmo, J.R.*, Perkins, K.J.*, and Lewis, A.M.*, p. 903-916.

* = Author is from the USGS Toxic Substances Hydrology Program’s Amargosa Desert Research Site, Nevada, research team.


Dane, J.H., and Topp, G.C., eds., 2002, Methods of Soil Analysis, Part 4, Physical Methods: Madison, WI, Soil Science Society of America, Soil Science Society of America Book Series Number 5, ISBN 0-89118-810-X, 1692 p.

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