Quantitative Analysis of Water Infiltration in Soil Cores Using X-Ray

Vadose Zone Journal. 2018;17(1) DOI 10.2136/vzj2016.12.0136


Journal Homepage

Journal Title: Vadose Zone Journal

ISSN: 1539-1663 (Online)

Publisher: Soil Science Society of America

LCC Subject Category: Geography. Anthropology. Recreation: Environmental sciences | Science: Geology

Country of publisher: United States

Language of fulltext: English

Full-text formats available: PDF, HTML



Ulrich Weller
Frederic Leuther
Steffen Schlüter
Hans-Jörg Vogel


Blind peer review

Editorial Board

Instructions for authors

Time From Submission to Publication: 11 weeks


Abstract | Full Text

X-ray radiography is a suitable approach to study water dynamics in undisturbed soil. However, beam hardening impairs the deduction of soil moisture changes from X-ray attenuation, especially when studying infiltration of water into cylindrical soil columns. We developed a calibration protocol to correct for beam hardening effects that enables the quantitative determination of changing average water content in two-dimensional projections. The method works for a broad range of materials and is easy to implement. Moreover, we studied the drift of X-ray attenuation values due to the detector latency and eliminated its contribution to the quantitative analysis. Finally we could visualize the dynamics of infiltrating water into undisturbed cylindrical soil samples.