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From spatial-continuous electrical resistivity measurements to the soil hydraulic functioning at the field scale

Abstract : The aim of this article is to present a strategy to interpret the hydraulic functioning of a small field area by using measurements of the soil electrical resistivity. The spatial soil electrical resistivity was recorded at a high resolution on a 2ha area by the MultiContinous Electrical Profiling (MuCEP) device at two dates. These apparent electrical resistivity measurements were firstly interpreted in terms of local electrical resistivity by 1D inverse modelling to estimate the real resistivity of the soil. These interpreted electrical resistivity data were then transformed into soil water content values and soil water potential values by the use of independent punctual data of water content and the use of the water retention curve determined by laboratory data. Our analysis has permitted us to describe the spatial variability and temporal evolution of the hydraulic functioning at high resolution from electrical resistivity data. The interpretation of the water content and matric potential maps demonstrated that some soil hydraulic processes, such as lateral overland flow, can occur in the studied zone. They would never have been detected by local measurements of soil characteristics or by the use of the soil map.
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Isabelle Cousin, Arlène Besson, Hocine Bourennane, Catherine Pasquier, Bernard Nicoullaud, et al.. From spatial-continuous electrical resistivity measurements to the soil hydraulic functioning at the field scale. Comptes Rendus Géoscience, Elsevier Masson, 2009, 341 (10-11), pp.859-867. ⟨10.1016/j.crte.2009.07.011⟩. ⟨hal-02662218⟩

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