Soil moisture monitoring solutions

20 October 2022


Sample image from IrriMAX for reference.

When it comes to measuring soil moisture, our supplier Sentek offer some of the best solutions available today.  Sentek is an Australian company that design, develop, manufacture, support and globally distribute best-in-class technologies for measuring and managing soil moisture, salinity and temperature.

So, what are the benefits of measuring soil moisture?  Simply put, by managing irrigation, customers save on input costs (water, fertilizer and power), increase yields and quality and ensure long-term sustainability. If you know your soil moisture levels, you will understand when further inputs are needed.

Measuring soil moisture is of benefit in many applications including irrigation and rainfed agriculture, research projects, parks, gardens, mining and environmental management. For instance, think of crops such as potatoes, almonds, brussels sprouts and vines – all benefit greatly from targeted irrigation. Other diverse applications include managing treated water from mining to managing turf irrigation in parks. A recent application we came across involved managing moisture levels in a landfill cap.

There are two key components to a soil moisture monitoring system:

  1. The sensor in the ground – Sentek’s range includes Drill and Drop probes, EnviroSCAN probes and Diviner 2000 probes.
  2. The software for displaying and managing the dataSentek’s IrriMAX software is the interface to the end user and enables them to readily visualise the ever-changing soil water and solute dynamics and make instant and informed management decisions.

What can we learn from this display?  The top panel is showing us the soil water content from six sensors at 10cm, 20cm, 30cm, 40cm, 50cm and 60cm depths. The peaks indicate irrigation or rainfall events and the impact they have on soil water content. The lower panel is displaying the total soil water content. Budget lines have been added to this display to show the Stress Point and Full Point for this crop. So very quickly you can determine whether additional irrigation is needed or not.

Interested in learning more about soil moisture monitoring?  Please contact HydroTerra today.